Cissus Quadrangularis— wonder drug or scam?

Written August 8, 2022: In my never ending quest to increase my bone mineral density, Cissus Quadrangularis has become a substance of interest. This is a short review of Cissus Quadrangularis. It's from 2020, and seems to be written by Indian authors. That's not necessarily disqualifying, but it is odd to me that only Indian researchers seem interested in the data about it. I don't recognize the Journal publishing it, but I'm not a medical professional and don't know all the journals.

Cissus Quadrangularis (hereafter abbreviated CQ) is derived from a tropical plant, and it used in India and Thailand as a pharmaceutical for a variety of ailments, including Osteoporosis. The current supplement I am taking includes CQ, along with calcium hydroxyapatite, vitamin K2 and vitamin D. This is a relatively new supplement for me, and I'm reasonably sure that my osteoporosis doctor would not approve of it— if she knew of it. Read the rest.

Adventures in Jackfruitland

Written summer 2022 (over a period of months…): So we bought a jackfruit... an unripe jackfruit (because we don't know jack about jackfruit...) What do you do with an unripe jackfruit? Well, most of it is said to be edible.

That noted, the seeds didn't soften as they should and will need to be boiled again, and the "rags" (the fibrous pith that surrounds the fruit) that I baked in a sh*t ton of spices and oil are basically spiced fiber and not much else (tasty "snacks" was the advertisement of the recipe that was my inspiration). Maybe if I doused it in sauce it would be "meat-like." Perhaps texturally, but not in taste. Do not recommend. The "rags" or pith are trash, truly.

The fruit itself is... unripe, so not as soft as it should be. All the recipes are from vegans creating "pork" or "chicken" in various forms. I think I will try a chile verde.

The chile verde didn't work out because we didn't have beans, so what I did was make a green chile soup with the seeds (which I
think can be eaten. I know ripe seeds can be, but internet varies with unripe seeds.) I added too much chile, but otherwise it's edible— and has not yet killed me. Read the rest.

Finally a statement, but no apology

Lindo Bacon finally posted a response. I'm not going to say much about it. The statement reads as though it was carefully vetted by a lawyer. It doesn't come close to the demands made by the individual that made the accusation, but it was never going to do so. Those demands were/are ludicrous on their face, just as demanding that Bacon allow someone else to completely rewrite her book was ridiculous. Read the (very brief) rest.

HAES Doctors - An oxymoron?

Finished April 3, 2022: The inspiration for these thoughts is this thoughtful posting. The piece calls out "HAES aligned" physicians for their silence regarding the Lindo Bacon food fight. To the extent that HAES (Health at Every Size) organizations have commented, the comments have been formulaic and anodyne.

I note that the author makes some good points. Doctors can't really be HAES aligned or part of fat liberation and should quit pretending to be so. Physicians have to diagnose and treat bodies in line with their training. And fatter bodies are harder to treat, because in addition to whatever condition the fat person has, the body is also compensating for the extra weight. Read the rest.

When your Shibboleths can't save you

Written 3.20.2022: It's been way too long since I published anything here, but I stumbled onto a controversy on which I can't help but opine.

Lindo Bacon (formerly Linda Bacon) high priest of HAES (Health at Every Size) is at the middle of a storm. Lindo is a thin individual (correction, make that thin, white, individual) who popularized the basic tenets of HAES (though did not originate them). Bacon wrote the "bible" and has made a living off that writing for decades at this point.

That Bacon is prickly about being challenged was obvious to anyone who had read Bacon's articles, comments or any interview where Bacon's input about HAES was requested. I certainly noticed it (and commented on it here). Bacon usually made sure to state that while Bacon's work was associated with HAES (Bacon's Twitter handle used to be LindBaconHAES after all before choosing LindoBaconX instead), HAES predated any scholarship associated with Bacon. However, Bacon also relished being the high priest of HAES and the gateway to HAES voices.

For the record, my opinion about HAES is unchanged. HAES is nonsense on stilts. Weight can be changed— in BOTH directions and does affect health. HAES/fat activists don't have issues with people gaining weight, just with choosing to lose it. Losing weight is supposed to be impossible and a form of "self-eradication". Former fatties who lose weight (usually due to health concerns) then maintain that weight loss are excommunicated from the movement. A fact I've also written about here in the past. Read the rest.

Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman

Written 7.25.2021 (or there abouts..): This was on our book shelf, an airport purchase, back when business trips were a thing. NOTE: this book is apparently no longer available through Amazon Prime (which is why there's no link — not that anyone USES the links I occasionally provide here… BUT… ), so if you want the book you'll have to find it elsewhere. And I have zero idea if anyone else is still offering the book. And with that "strong" endorsement… my review:

It’s a very crisply written easy to read book, which is hamstrung by its subject matter. Read the rest.

My Loki Prediction

Written 7.13.2021: Apropos of nothing… considering I never read any Marvel comics and am only recently a convert to the MCU… I am going to hazard a guess as to what the ending of Loki (series on Disney+ that could have been a movie) is going to be. (Continues here.)

Was I right? Not entirely, as you can read here.

The Battle Cry of Freedom:

A condensed history of the Civil War

Published July 6, 2021: This is part of my (admittedly sporadic) series of book reviews as I continue to try and increase the amount of offline reading that I do.

I have owned this book since it was published over 20 years ago. Back then, I fancied myself a scholar and great reader, and so joined a book of the month club. This book was one of the books recommended.

Earlier this year, I picked it up after finishing (finally) Volume I of the Shelby Foote (definitely not condensed) history of the Civil War. That series was purchased as a result of Ken Burns' Civil War series, but again I bought it, but didn't read it. However, my thoughts on that book/series will be a separate entry. I picked up the The Battle Cry of Freedom from my bookshelf after so many years because it was mentioned in a piece online that I was reading. It was highly praised, and that jogged my memory that I had the book. So I began reading.
Read the rest.

Let's talk about collagen

4.20.2021: If my Facebook timeline is to be believed, collagen is having a moment. It would appear that the multi-level marketing firm of Isagenix has come out with an "elixir" that has collagen as a primary ingredient. I'm not linking to the company because I think the whole thing is a scam.

Collagen and its effects, however, are not a scam. Collagen is basically pure (animal) protein and is found in bon broths. The paleo diet followers have been touting bone broth as a magical elixir for years. But Isagenix has upped the volume to 11, and is charging roughly $40 for 10 "elixirs" that each contain 5g of fish protein. So, 50g of protein for $40

In contrast, Amazon is selling Great Lakes canisters of beef derived (kosher, gluten free etc) for about $20. Each canister contains 38 servings of 12g of protein, or 456g (1 pound) of protein for $20. Yes, yes, the "elixir" contains fruit juices and other filler, but the point of the exercise is to ingest collagen.

Does the source of the collagen matter? By which I mean is fish protein inherently better than beef derived protein— I'm assuming that both sources adhere to prevailing health and safety standards. Just for the record, you don't get the kosher credo if you don't.

No, there is no meaningful difference between collagen derived from fish or beef. They are both processed, and the end result is the same. Read the rest.

Nothing Intuitive here…

Published 3.20.2021: It's been awhile since I checked in on the “fat-o-sphere.” So long, that I’m pretty sure that’s not the current term for it. Certainly fat blogging has changed over the years. Many blogs are now moribund, and links to them dead. Were I to go back through the archival pieces at this site I might remove all the dead links, but that’s not likely to happen soon.

Quick aside: Google recently changed their ad policies (again). This time the result is that some older posts might have blank spaces rather than ads now. I don't know, and sadly for reasons unclear to me, the previous RapidWeaver file that was this website no longer works. That means to update, I will have to manually change everything… and that's unlikely to happen, perhaps ever. Not that this will be the only outdated site on the web. People abandon websites/blogs etc all the time. End aside.

Anyway, I’m highlighting this link because I noticed that the average size for women is now considered 18, rather than 12. A few years ago the number was 12. Pretty sure that vanity sizing still occurs, so I guess that’s an indication that Americans are still getting fatter every year? Or maybe it suggests that the 12 number was too small. In any event, it caught my attention.

Keep reading.
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