Food Facts & Lore, Monday Magazine

The Monday Mag – June 1, 2015

In This Edition Of Our Weekly Magazine:

– Wait! Wait! Don’t Compost That Yet!
– Birds Begging At The Table
– Eat Your Way To Better Dreams

Our Favorite Quote Of The Week – “An egg is a chemical process, but it is not a mere chemical process. It is one that is going places – even when, in our world of chance and contingency, it ends up in an omelet.” – John Randall

158 - watermelon

Wait! Wait! Don’t Compost That Yet! – Here in America we compost more than ever. In urban areas some people even sell their compost to neighbors or bring it to farms on the outskirts of town. But in our eagerness to return produce to the earth, we can miss out on attractive and practical second uses. Take stale bread, for example. Run it through the coffee grinder before you take it to the pile. It will clean out old residue and odor. Leftover potato pieces, including the skin, can be used like cucumber slices to sooth puffy eyes. There is evidence that catecholase, an enzyme present in potatoes, may even help reduce light wrinkles. Last, but not least, watermelon. We eat it right down to the rind and stop, as if the sweet, refreshing flesh were suddenly to turn into poison. Truth is, watermelon rind is rich in amino acids that help improve circulation. They can be added to smoothies and even sauteed in a vegetable medley.

158 - birds

Birds Begging At The Table – General consensus is that dogs should not eat human food. Pooch will beg nonetheless because his instinct informs him that there may be something fishy about that rule. Some of us do share table scraps with the dog, staying away from certain foods we know may be hazardous. Then there’s the birds. Seed mixes do not necessarily contain all the carbohydrates and fats birds need for good health, and it is an error to think that their diet is naturally limited. It is not. Here are three foods from your table you may share with feathery friends, if you wish: Crushed egg shell and even cooked eggs. The shells provide the grit they need for digestion. Eggs are a good source of protein that birds can digest. In fact, if you put egg shell on your compost pile you may have noticed birds, particularly Blue Jays, pecking at it. Mild, solid cheeses, such as Cheddar, are very suitable treats. You may also serve cooked rice and pasta. Serve plain and finely chopped, without any sauce or salt.

158 - dreams

Eat Your Way To Better Dreams – You’ve surely noticed how some foods seem to lead to nightmares every time you consume them. You may wave it off as mere coincidence the first couple times, but after this happens repeatedly the connection becomes undeniable. In fact, explain researchers, it is specific nutrients in foods that are responsible for our night-time journeys. Tryptophan, the amino acid found in abundance at the Thanksgiving table and known to promote good sleep, is also a key ingredient to a rich dream experience. Here are six foods to put on your plate to promote deeper dreaming. And there’s something for vegans too: Chicken (it contains more tryptophan than turkey), turkey and tuna. Kidney beans, pumpkin seeds and cheese. Sweet dreams!

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