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Choose Wellness -- June 2010
June 15, 2010
Greetings, best wishes

... and welcome everyone to these mid-year jottings. A special welcome to those of you who have just recently registered to receive this newsletter. Please be sure to pass it on to anyone else you think could be interested.

We are at the moment visiting our home town of Townsville again. The weather here is so pleasant, it's the perfect time to be here. Who would ever guess that this is 'winter'??

It's not always so perfect in the summer as it does get extremely hot then ...and as we then tend to smother ourselves with sunscreen I was interested to read recently, the suggestion that .... maybe your Sunscreen is doing more harm than good!!

We all know that the Vitamin D that sunshine provides is very good for us but those of us who live in the Tropics have to be particularly careful about just how much sun we get. It has been drummed into us since we were very little that we wear a hat and use protective sunscreen, particularly if we are swimming or at the beach.

The ultraviolet rays from the sun can cause skin cancer and we do need to take some simple precautions when we are out in the sun. Click on the following link to get some really helpful tips about protecting yourself from the harmful rays of the sun. ..

... and to learn more about sunscreens and whether they are 'safe', go to: ... where the following topics are discussed.

  1. There’s no consensus on whether sunscreens prevent skin cancer.
  2. There’s some evidence that sunscreens might increase the risk of the deadliest form of skin cancer for some people.
  3. There are more high SPF products than ever before, but no proof that they’re better.
  4. Too little sun might be harmful, reducing the body’s vitamin D levels.
  5. The common sunscreen ingredient vitamin A may speed the development of cancer.
  6. Free radicals and other skin-damaging byproducts of sunscreen.
  7. Pick your sunscreen: nanomaterials or potential hormone disruptors.

" Getting about 10 minutes of sunlight daily has many health benefits. Sunlight increases the production of endorphins, which help instill a sense of well-being and reduces depression."


Do you suffer regularly from hearthburn? If so it may be as well to try the following tips rather than just 'pop a pill' to relieve the situation. Those 'drugs' may just be doing you more harm than good!
  1. Avoid those foods that often trigger heartburn. These will vary, of course, from person to person, but the most common offenders include orange juice, chocolate, tomato sauce, spicy foods, mint, garlic, and vinegar, and, of course, fatty, greasy foods, like cheeseburgers and fries.
  2. Stay upright for a few hours after you eat... or better still, particularly after a large meal, go for a walk.
  3. Don't immediately start an intense exercise workout as this will slow digestion making reflux more likely. Far better to exercise first thing in the morning, or a few hours after a meal, and if you do experience heartburn symptoms after a workout, drink extra water. Staying hydrated helps improve digestion to keep symptoms at bay.
  4. Eat smaller meals more often rather than three large meals a day... The worst thing you can do is eat a large meal right before bed.
  5. Go easy on the caffeine and alcohol — and avoid cigarettes. All three can relax the esophageal sphincter muscle, which normally keeps stomach acid from splashing up into the esophagus. Carbonated beverages can also cause this problem.
  6. Don't eat too quickly. Try chewing slowly and putting your fork down between bites. Hot soups are a good appetizer because they take longer to consume.
  7. Wear looser-fitting clothes. Tight belts, waistbands, and pantyhose constrict the stomach, sometimes triggering reflux.
  8. Find ways to relax. Stress may increase stomach acids, raising the likelihood of heartburn.
  9. Aim to lose a few extra pounds. The pressure of excess weight—especially around the abdomen — increases the chance that stomach acid will backwash into the esophagus.
  10. Try chewing gum. This can boost the production of saliva, which neutralizes stomach acid.

Finally, make sure you have enough digestive enzymes on board by taking a natural probiotic supplement if necessary.

Here's the link to read more:

"Chewing triggers the production and release of saliva, which then mixes with the food, initiating its digestion, preparing the alkalinity of the stomach, killing germs and lubricating the swallowed food for a smoother transit through the esophagus." Alejandro Junger, MD

Recipe - Creamy Peanut Chicken

Just recently, while here in Townsville, we celebrated a very special wedding anniversary (I won't tell you how many years, but it's a lot). It was great to party with longtime friends and close relations - we all had a really good night together at the home of our very good friends Sue & Geoff. We had a buffet meal made up of various curries so thought I would include the recipe here of a very simple but tasty 'Creamy Peanut Chicken', one of those we shared. I make it often and all members of the family seem to enjoy it. It comes from a Thai recipe book put out by the Womens' Weekly many years ago. I've varied the recipe slightly by adding the onions, carrots & celery.


  • 500g diced chicken breast, or thigh meat if you prefer.
  • 1 tab red curry paste
  • 1 tab fish sauce
  • 1 tab brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup peanut paste
  • 1 sm tin coconut cream
  • onion, carrot, celery (optional

Saute the diced (or sliced)onions for a few minutes in a little oil, add the curry paste and continue cooking for a few minutes. Add the chicken pieces and chopped celery and continue cooking gently. Meanwhile parboil the sliced carrots and drain before adding to the pan with the brown sugar, fish sauce and peanut paste. Simmer gently till cooked and then stir in a small tin of coconut cream. Serve with rice and lemon wedges.

How Safe is the Fish we Buy

Being back in Townsville and visiting Magnetic Island (just off the coast) and remembering all the wonderful freshly caught fish that we consumed, I was perturbed to see the following video.

Once upon a time it was not always easy to buy fresh fish and when you did buy 'fish and chips' from the local fish shop, you knew that the fish was 'local'. Nowadays supermarkets are filled with all manner of seafood, obviously much of it imported. This video highlights just how careful we should be when choosing the fish we eat.

Having lived for many years where we were able to 'catch our own' we find it very disconcerting to see whole fish that have not been gutted and cleaned. That was always the first thing we did when we caught a fish! Presumably the fish caught now are immediately snap frozen but one does wonder about the health issues of not cleaning them. All too often in the supermarket or fish market, whole fish are sold 'uncleaned'.

I'll leave you with a couple of photos taken at one of our favourite beaches (Geoffrey Bay) on Magnetic Island where we spent the weekend.

(On the left in the background is Townsville)

...till next time, don't forget that I love to receive your questions, comments or requests and I'd love you to send your favourite recipe or health tip, so please contact me if you have anything you'd like to contribute or any questions.

Until then keep well and remember

'healthy cells = healthy bodies'


'be well ... bHip'


'happy shopping'


PS Don't forget to share this Newsletter with your friends.


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