January 2015 TBR List

I need to read one book a week to make my goal of 52 books in one year. I figure if I can read during my lunch at work or before I go to bed, this should be an easily accomplished goal. That is as long as I am consistent. Also a few long weekends during the year and I always read a lot during the summer. I like to read while sitting outside. And another thing, as anyone who loves to read can tell you, there are always opportunities to read if you keep a book close at hand. Examples would be during car trips and while waiting on for appointments.

Besides the free Kindle First and free Amazon books, I normally use the online version of my local library. It used to be hard to get books, but now there are a lot. It is just hard to get popular books. But thankfully they have a hold system. Sometimes the hold system takes quite some time due to more than a hundred people waiting on a few copies of the book. No matter to me, except for when I want a book right now to be able to discuss it for a book club selection. Of course you can only check out so many books and they are loaned for 3 weeks at a time.

Since January is the first month, I am going to go with a theme of “first in a series” books. I pass by a lot of authors that have long running series, because it seems too much work to go back and figure out the order of things. And of course, I would have to read them (OCD) from the beginning in order. So to try this out I found some options on my library site – maybe I will find someone new to like!

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Looks like January has the potential to be a very interesting month!
And this doesn’t even include my free Kindle First choice and/or book club choices.

keep coloring outside the lines,

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January 2015 TBR List

The Perfect Human Diet (2012)

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Health is not the absence of disease. I agree with this. When I go to my physical every year, I am declared healthy by a doctor. Yet I don’t feel I am a healthy person. I think this would describe a lot of the people in this country.

The narrator of this movie, C.J. Hunt  “dropped dead” of a heart attack at the age of 24. He started researching.
The information starts with different people’s research on traditional eating. These included people from Australia and Canada and their native traditional ways. Surprisingly, exercise or eating only plants wasn’t a big factor. It was more the local foods that were eaten prior to modern convenience foods, including wildlife meats.
He sought out information from vegetarian and vegan followers. He found contradicting information about whether humans are herbivores vs. carnivores. Abstaining from carbs, which actually is not something new, but something from the 1800’s. In the 1950’s carbs regained a good name and fat became the bad guy. Following just this far in the program, it illustrates how confusing it is to eat right when rules/advice get changed back and forth.

At the end the perfect human diet is a paleo diet. I didn’t agree with a bunch of the things in the documentary, but there were a lot of interesting ideas.

My rating: StarStarStarStarStar 5/10

The Perfect Human Diet (2012)

Movie Review: Food Fight (2008)

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Is picking the best of a pile of tasteless tomatoes really a choice? I so agree with that statement. Sometimes choosing the “good stuff” in a store still isn’t the best thing you can do.

War and agriculture has always been linked. I never thought about this. The US Army K-Ration was the grandfather to the modern day TV dinner. A relation was made between making bombs and fertilizer. In the way we farm now, petroleum is in just about everything. What?!
When it was first introduced in the 1950’s, convenience food was marketed as “like having a maid” to the housewife. Housewives went out into the work force. Flavor went out the door as a priority with the making of convenience foods. In the 1960’s a counterculture who rebelled against the conformists fought to get back to basics.

I found this film very interesting because of the information given regarding how the government has had such a big part in the food that is available and the food that is promoted here in the United States. The layout of a typical store is set up for consumer failure on the way to choosing healthy choices. To get to anything healthy, you must walk through aisles of junk food. I find this to be true wherever I go no matter what store.

I also loved seeing many popular professional chefs in their own kitchens and gardens and most of all at the farmer’s markets. The gardens featured made me want to garden again. I can very much attest to the difference between store tomatoes and ones that you grow yourself.

My rating: StarStarStarStarStarStarStar 7/10

Movie Review: Food Fight (2008)

Movie Review: Chow Down (2010)

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This is a film review for a movie I watched during a food & health movie mini-marathon at the end of 2014 in order to get some information to motivate me for 2015’s health goals.

The film follows 3 people who have potentially chronic diseases and what happens when they use food to treat and turn their conditions around.
Charles and John have heart disease and Garnet has diabetes. Their doctor’s diagnosis and advice isn’t very positive and they each decide to take matters into their own hands. They each decide to take on a plant-based diet to try to reverse their prognosis.

The cartoon graphics aren’t the greatest. And the statistics are a lot older than I would have expected in a 2010 film. But it was interesting to see the regular people on the street and comments they made. I liked that the people who changed their diet admitted what they really thought. Charles made a big commitment, even traveling in a RV on the family vacation so he could bring his own food. Garnet took her own salad to the company picnic. John made a comment about walking around the block, not normally something he would like to do. And no, nothing in the film mentioned exercise. The participants only spoke about how they changed their diet to change their medical outlook.

Something I didn’t like was Charles’ wife stating how expensive it was to eat healthy. I wonder if she is trying to be frugal in her shopping. Fruits and vegetables can be very expensive, depending on what you are buying and the season you are buying them in. So I wonder about that part. My local Aldi’s normally has pretty decent prices on those items compared to meat prices being more expensive. Also food preservation such as freezing and dehydration or canning would cut these costs and not nutrition.

Dr. Esselstyn makes the statement, “we are selling sickness”. He refers to pills and Lipitor is stated to be the most sold drug. I can believe that, as the word Lipitor is not a foreign term to most people I know. Another statement he makes is that heart procedures are nothing but a temporary patch job, they do nothing to stop or reverse the disease. I don’t think people think about that as a reality. Dr. Esselstyn has started treating patients at his own home. Charles and John are two of those patients.

One big thing the film points out over and over with specific examples is the fact that the United States government and big food item companies are and have been instrumental in keeping certain information from the American public. We know about “big tobacco” and how influential those companies have been in advertising for many years because of the amount of money the sale of cigarettes generate. On the fringe of that  are the alcohol companies. Everyone knows tobacco and alcohol are harmful, but you never hear about the food industry as a bad guy. When you think about it, I am sure food companies have forced certain entities to withhold information that would harm their business. How could we ever put a bad face on the fast food choices we all love? In recent years McDonald’s has had a spotlight on it at times, but where I live, I don’t see any drop in kids sitting strapped in their child seats, eating McDonald’s french fries. And even though I don’t have kids, I know the smell of a car that has dropped and forgotten McDonald’s french fries in it. Ick.

My rating: StarStarStarStarStarStar  6/10

Movie Review: Chow Down (2010)