Friday, November 30, 2012

Onions!!

In 1919 when the flu killed 40 million people there was this Doctor that visited the many farmers to see if he could help them combat the flu...
Many of the farmers and their families had contracted it and many died.

The doctor came upon this one farmer and to his surprise, everyone was very healthy. When the doctor asked what the farmer was doing that was different the wife replied that she had placed an unpeeled onion in a dish in the rooms of the home, (probably only two rooms back then). The doctor couldn't believe it and asked if he could have one of the onions and place it under the microscope. She gave him one and when he did this, he did find the flu virus in the onion. It obviously absorbed the bacteria, therefore, keeping the family healthy. 

Now, I heard this story from my hairdresser. She said that several years ago, many of her employees were coming down with the flu, and so were many of her customers. The next year she placed several bowls with onions around in her shop. To her surprise, none of her staff got sick. It must work. Try it and see what happens. We did it last year and we never got the flu. 

Now there is a P. S. to this for I sent it to a friend in Oregon who regularly contributes material to me on health issues. She replied with this most interesting experience about onions: 

Thanks for the reminder. I don't know about the farmer's story...but, I do know that I contacted pneumonia, and, needless to say, I was very ill... I came across an article that said to cut both ends off an onion put it into an empty jar, and place the jar next to the sick patient at night. It said the onion would be black in the morning from the germs...sure enough it happened just like that...the onion was a mess and I began to feel better. 

Another thing I read in the article was that onions and garlic placed around the room saved many from the black plague years ago. They have powerful antibacterial, antiseptic properties. 

This is the other note. Lots of times when we have stomach problems we don't know what to blame. Maybe it's the onions that are to blame. Onions absorb bacteria is the reason they are so good at preventing us from getting colds and flu and is the very reason we shouldn't eat an onion that has been sitting for a time after it has been cut open. 

LEFT OVER ONIONS ARE POISONOUS

I had the wonderful privilege of touring Mullins Food Products, Makers of mayonnaise. Questions about food poisoning came up, and I wanted to share what I learned from a chemist.

Ed, who was our tour guide, is a food chemistry whiz. During the tour, someone asked if we really needed to worry about mayonnaise. People are always worried that mayonnaise will spoil. Ed's answer will surprise you. Ed said that all commercially-made mayo is completely safe.

"It doesn't even have to be refrigerated. No harm in refrigerating it, but it's not really necessary." He explained that the pH in mayonnaise is set at a point that bacteria could not survive in that environment. He then talked about the summer picnic, with the bowl of potato salad sitting on the table, and how everyone blames the mayonnaise when someone gets sick.

Ed says that, when food poisoning is reported, the first thing the officials look for is when the 'victim' last ate ONIONS and where those onions came from (in the potato salad?). Ed says it's not the mayonnaise (as long as it's not homemade mayo) that spoils in the outdoors. It's probably the ONIONS, and if not the onions, it's the POTATOES.

He explained onions are a huge magnet for bacteria, especially uncooked onions. You should never plan to keep a portion of a sliced onion.. He says it's not even safe if you put it in a zip-lock bag and put it in your refrigerator.

It's already contaminated enough just by being cut open and out for a bit, that it can be a danger to you (and doubly watch out for those onions you put in your hotdogs at the baseball park!). Ed says if you take the leftover onion and cook it like crazy you'll probably be okay, but if you slice that leftover onion and put on your sandwich, you're asking for trouble. Both the onions and the moist potato in a potato salad, will attract and grow bacteria faster than any commercial mayonnaise will even begin to break down.

Also, dogs should never eat onions. Their stomachs cannot metabolize onions.

Please remember it is dangerous to cut an onion and try to use it to cook the next day, it becomes highly poisonous for even a single night and creates toxic bacteria which may cause adverse stomach infections because of excess bile secretions and even food poisoning. 

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Tomatoes!!

One of the most common food storage mistakes, made by a large number of people, is keeping tomatoes in the refrigerator. It is wrong to assume that storing tomatoes in refrigerator keeps them fresher for longer; in actual fact, the opposite is true. Refrigeration makes them mealy after only a couple of days and gets rid of their flavor. There are far better ways of storing fresh tomatoes in order 
to keep them tasting fresh and sweet and maintain their firm texture.

If you have bought your tomatoes from the store, the first thing you need to do is remove them from their plastic packaging, as leaving them in their bags will make them rot a lot quicker. Put them in a bowl that you have lined with a paper towel. If you place the tomatoes with the stems at the top, they will stay fresh for longer. The most tender part of the fruit is directly around the stem, making this part most likely to bruise.Temperature is an important factor when storing tomatoes. Room temperature is preferable; additionally, try to maintain the same temperature for as long as possible. Keep your tomatoes away from any major heat sources, such as stove tops and microwaves. They should not be placed in direct sunlight either, unless they need to ripen. If this is the case, line them up on the window sill or place the bowl on the sill if there is enough room. Great way to ensure proper humidity for storing tomatoes is special containers with controlled ventilation and ridges to keep moisture away. Tomatoes need a little light handling to keep them in optimum health. Gently, move them around in the bowl every day. This stops them sitting in the same spot all the time, which can lead to dark spots and bruises. Bruises lead to rotting, which will ruin your tomatoes. Be careful not to drop or squeeze them while you are handling them. Tomatoes stored in the correct way should stay good for up to a week.T

Monday, April 30, 2012

Trials

Connect Group Questions
 
1.  Read 1 Peter 4:12-14 aloud in your group.  In verse 13 why does Peter say we should be glad when we go through trials?  Have you ever experienced a time where you knew God was with you in a difficult time?  How did knowing God was with you affect your ability to get through the trial?
 
“these trials make you partners with Christ in his suffering, so that you will have the wonderful joy of seeing his glory when it is revealed to all the world.”
Peter tells us that going through trials makes us more like Christ and that when we win the battle it brings joy.
 
 
2.  Read 1 Peter 4:15-18 aloud in your group.  Peter identifies two reasons we might suffer.  What are they?  The first step in determining if our trials are a test from God or an attack from Satan is to assess why we are suffering.
 
We might suffer from our own sin, disobeying God’s commands, rebellion against God’s purposes.  When we do stuff that God clearly says will harm us, we have only ourselves to blame.
 
One of my favorite verses in the Bible is
 
Proverbs 19:3 (TEV)  “Some people ruin themselves by their own stupid actions and then blame the LORD.”
 
Ouch!  That hurts doesn’t it – LOL!
 
We might also suffer for being a Christian, for doing the right thing, for following God’s plan and obeying His will.  Peter says we should “praise God” when this is the case.
 
 
3.  What should we do if our suffering is a result of disobeying God’s plan?  Read 1 Peter 3:10-17 for insight.
 
The simple answer is to “REPENT” to turn from our disobedience and follow God’s plans and purposes.
Be sure and read through 1 Peter 3:10-17 for more insight.  Here’s an excerpt from the passage to guide your thoughts.
 
1 Peter 3:10-12 (NLT)
10 For the Scriptures say, “If you want to enjoy life and see many happy days, keep your tongue from speaking evil and your lips from telling lies. 11 Turn away from evil and do good. Search for peace, and work to maintain it. 12 The eyes of the Lord watch over those who do right, and his ears are open to their prayers. But the Lord turns his face against those who do evil.”
4.  Read 1 Peter 4:19 aloud in your group.  What should we do if our suffering is a result of obeying God and doing what is right?  Does it surprise you that Peter says we can “suffer in a manner that pleases God”?
 
19 So if you are suffering in a manner that pleases God, keep on doing what is right, and trust your lives to the God who created you, for he will never fail you.
I’ve also included this verse in the New International Version rendering.  I like the wording “suffer according to God’s will”
I don’t think it very often occurs to us that we can suffer in a way that is “according to God’s will”.  Somehow we’ve adopted the idea that God’s purpose is to always provide us with safety and comfort.  When in fact God is much more interested in our character and our strength for battle.
 
5.  Are you going through a trial right now?  Is it a result of disobeying God or obeying God?  Based on this study, what do you need to do?  Ask the group to pray for you “to do what is right and trust your life to the God who created you…”
 
I hope you are emphasizing the prayer focus each time your group meets.  Now that the group is getting to know each other better, you should encourage people to be real.  Especially when it comes to being honest about our struggles.  Just the other day I was thinking about the power of
 
James 5:16  “Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.”
The flip side of that coin would indicate that when we aren’t in connections where we are real about our sin and confess those sins to others who will pray for us... we don’t get healed.
 
OK, that should give you plenty to chew on as your prepare for your groups this week.  As always, feel free to contact me if you have any questions.
 
Have a great week,
 
Pastor Jim
 
 
1 Peter 4:12-19 (NLT)
12 Dear friends, don’t be surprised at the fiery trials you are going through, as if something strange were happening to you.  13 Instead, be very glad—for these trials make you partners with Christ in his suffering, so that you will have the wonderful joy of seeing his glory when it is revealed to all the world.  14 So be happy when you are insulted for being a Christian, for then the glorious Spirit of God rests upon you.  15 If you suffer, however, it must not be for murder, stealing, making trouble, or prying into other people’s affairs.  16 But it is no shame to suffer for being a Christian. Praise God for the privilege of being called by his name!  17 For the time has come for judgment, and it must begin with God’s household. And if judgment begins with us, what terrible fate awaits those who have never obeyed God’s Good News?  18 And also, “If the righteous are barely saved, what will happen to godless sinners?”  19 So if you are suffering in a manner that pleases God, keep on doing what is right, and trust your lives to the God who created you, for he will never fail you.
 
1 Peter 4:19 (NIV)
So then, those who suffer according to God's will should commit themselves to their faithful Creator and continue to do good.