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over 256 yearsAccording to the 1933 obituaries in both Time Magazine and the New York Times, Li Ching-Yun was reported to have buried 23 wives and fostered 180 descendants by the time he died at the age of 256.

Was he really that old? Could he have forgotten his own birthday or exaggerated his claim? Environmental Graffiti investigates.

"The Secrets to an Interminable Life

"Keep a quiet heart, sit like a tortoise, walk sprightly like a pigeon and sleep like a dog." These were the words of advice Li gave to Wu Pei-fu, the warlord, who took Li into his house to learn the secret of extremely long life.

Li maintained that inward calm and peace of mind were the secrets to incredible longevity. His diet after all, was mainly based on rice and wine.

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Unsurprisingly, not much is known about Li Ching-Yun’s early life. We know he was born in the province of Szechwan in China, where he also died. We also know that by his tenth birthday, Ching-Yun was literate and had travelled to Kansu, Shansi, Tibet, Annam, Siam and Manchuria gathering herbs. After that, it gets a bit fuzzy…

Apparently, for over one hundred years, Li continued selling his own herbs and then subsequently sold herbs collected by others. He also (according to Time) had six-inch long fingernails on his right hand.

You might be thinking that he looked decrepit, shrivelled, leather-like and creepy, however sources at the time were astonished at his youthfulness. Was this suspect? Was Li Ching-Yun as old as he claimed he was, or was his birthday a clerical error or exaggeration?

The idea that our health, longevity and overall life is not confined to any one rule of thought but can be changed in a moment. Through Dr. Ellen Langer's work we see proof of this kind of plasticity. She speaks of mindfulness which is really about being right here right now as opposed to the autopilot nature in which we normally run our lives. She has done experiments that show that by planting and experiencing new things our health, happiness and longevity can be more of what we would like them to be. Dr. Langer shows us what we buy into as a belief along with our absence from being mindful. Her work is fascinating and this video lecture should be watch in its entirety. One’s life can be richer when we learn to be more mindful. Her website is

Friday, 30 November 2012 22:09

The Story of Your Enslavement




Human behavior is at times questionable and in may cases a result of conditions that seem to slip by unnoticed. Daylight Savings Time is one of those conditions. This shift in time change seem like a simple and harmless factor yet its impact on the body can vacillate from mild to extreme according to the individual. The following excerpt is taken from an article by Laura Schocker:

These time changes play out in our body a bit like jet lag might, explained Michael Decker, Ph.D., an associate professor at Georgia State University and spokesman for the American Academy of Sleep Medicine. Springing forward is like flying from west to east -- say from California to Washington, D.C. -- while falling back is like flying from east to west. And as frequent flyers can attest, the eastbound change is much harder to acclimate to than the westbound for most. "The adjustment is much milder in the fall than it is in the springtime," Decker says. And that means we may be experiencing a collective, but mild, jet lag this Sunday, which will clear up in 24 hours or so. Full article

Thursday, 04 October 2012 23:27

Does Gluten free mean healthier foods?


Does Gluten free mean healthier foods?

We live in a trend driven society and because of this important questions are seldom asked. There is confusion for much of the general public in determining what is healthy. It is for this reason that Dr. Oz has become such an overnight sensation. People need to be instructed and prefer to have a more qualified party conduct the research and notify us of our options and in most cases simply narrow our options. The gluten free diet is spreading due to the obvious health issues resulting from gluten foods. There is however a misconception that gluten free means that we are consuming healthy foods. Many of these gluten free products contain ingredients such as corn syrup, dextrose anhydrous, soy lecithin, natural flavors and so many other additives that have no nutritional value.

The Scoop on Gluten

The latest nutrition buzzword appears to be “gluten-free.” Gluten-free foods and dishes have popped up all over grocery stores and restaurants, as more people are eliminating gluten from their diets. But will you win your way to greater health and longevity by jumping on the gluten-free bandwagon? Continue reading to find out more about gluten.

What is gluten?

Gluten is a protein found primarily in wheat and related grains, like rye, barley, and triticale—and numerous food products like bread and pasta. Gluten can be difficult for the body to process and digest, and many people develop a sensitivity to it. READ FULL ARTICLE

Study questions how much better organic food is

1.“Unsure, Stanford University doctors dug through reams of research to find out — and concluded there's little evidence that going organic is much healthier, citing only a few differences involving pesticides and antibiotics.”

vegfruitandjuicejpg 15042010-112057The ongoing attempt to authorize and validate harmful pesticides in conventionally grown foods is offensive. Informing the public of scientific conclusions about organic foods is an attempt to convert our beliefs to an acceptance of conventionally grown foods over organic. Historically farmers have always fought with insect invaders but they used the most natural methods relevant to the times. The increase in modern day pesticides has its roots in the weaponizing of chemical agents. Research for chemical agents was based on specifically targeting certain organisms which ultimately involves both humans and insects.

There remain tremendous confusion about the definition of Organics and GMO’s. Does organic mean that it’s not GMO or what about non-GMO foods grown conventionally…what are the guidelines. Below is a short summary clarifying these guidelines:

What's the difference between non-GMO and organic?

Posted by Neil E. Levin, CCN, DANLA

IP-Certified Organics are produced without GMOs (genetically modified organisms) but are not tested for potential GMO contamination by pollen drift, etc. The IP stands for 'identity preserved"; in other words, there is an audit trail documenting the production and process inputs and a third party certifier overseeing and signing off on the paperwork. All crops and foods produced under this designation meet U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) regulations under its National Organic Program (USDA-NOP) that include allowable and non-allowable agricultural and food production inputs. Such inputs include irradiation (not allowed), agricultural chemicals (only natural source ones allowed), and GMOs (not allowed). There are also lists of allowed/not allowed food additives and rules for making label claims for organics.

IP-non-GMO certification is similar, but this certification is only for processes that exclude introducing GMO substances or seeds. The difference is that there are other restrictions as to what is allowed to be used with organics that don't apply to non-GMO conventional foods. For example, agricultural chemicals, synthetic food additives, etc are allowed with non-GMO but not for certified organics.

Testing is another issue. Testing of such products is not widely done, and studies have shown that there is less GMO contamination of certified organics than conventional crops when neither is supposed to contain GMOs. Exports to Europe may require GMO testing to be done and results must be under a threshold (typically 0.5% maximum). But most certified organic and non-GMO certified ingredients are not tested for residual GMOs that could have gotten in by seed contamination, pollen drift, handling errors, etc. and this is usually not considered to be a significant problem that requires testing.

What is being ignored by those who are bent on promoting conventionally grown foods and GMO foods; are the number of people with increased allergies and the increase in auto immune disorders and other health disorder. There is such an effort to avoid all association between the two. Organizations like Monsanto bank on the absence of common sense in the minds of the general public. Common sense would diktat that the body might object to foreign chemicals/substances and genetically modified foods. What we must rely on is to educate ourselves for it is evident that we cannot rely on governing systems in place to select food and health options that are in our best interest.


  1. 1.Study questions how much better organic food is

  1. 2.What's the difference between non-GMO and organic?

Thursday, 09 August 2012 20:45

How Does Cancer Know its Cancer

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