Posts in "Moms, Kids,Teens"

Diane Gold 2017 Boca Raton World Tai Chi Day


By Diane Gold


by Diane Gold

WHAT: Diane Gold’s Boca Raton World Tai Chi Day 2017

WHERE: Red Reef Park, in the Wedding Pavilion, map , facebook event
1400 N. Ocean Blvd.
Boca Raton, Florida 33432

A1A, .8 miles north of Palmetto, east (ocean) side, your right

A1A, 2.2 miles south of Spanish River, east (ocean) side, your left

WHEN: Saturday, 10 AM-11:30 AM, APRIL 29, 2017


PARKING FEE: WAIVED – In through the gate, bear right to the South side of the parking lot. Look East and see the Wedding Pavilion. Or just ask Ira at the gate.


Tai chi is a life enhancing, life extending, life saving work of moving art. Heal thyself, medicate thyself with goodness, meditate. Get powerful. Increase good energy. It is as improvisational as we are. We learn some basic, foundational movements that teach us to move everything at once. We balance our breathing (which, after the start of shortness of breath, I can tell you loads about). There is no need to work on breathing; once our movements are unstinted, smooth, pure; our breathing will match automatically – part of the tai chi magic.

Chi kung note: When I say tai chi, I am referring to tai chi and chi kung, together. They are one.

When we are sick (oy vey!), when we are well (hallellujah!); tai chi is a systematic approach of moving all body parts, inner and outer, at the same time. We are focusing. And the big kahuna gift is we are doing ONE THING AT A TIME, until we become doing no thing at a time. One-pointed focus. Do it!

WHO: Everyone.

Tai chi is good for everyone, every age, every mind set. The only requirement is that we be human. And that is only for this example, because, as people give their pets acupuncture, massage and other medicine; some also do tai chi with their beloved pets.

Let’s bring our anxiety, our anger, our grief, our power, our love, our hate, our ADHD, our sickness, our health, our poverty, our riches. Tai chi will turn it all into peace. It’s not a mind thing; it’s evidence-based and studied medicine. When we move the body, we produce chemicals, hormones spurt, electrical impulses pulse. When we tai chi, we are focusing on just that one thing. In order to focus, we work it. This leaves no time for pinball mind, emotional roller coaster. This balances the body functions. Thus, positive results turn the ever present dis-ease into ease.


Repetition. To become familiar. This familiarity develops a habit, as with any habit. This habit allows us the fluidity of tai chi.


April 29, 2017, 10 AM, come on down to Diane Gold’s Boca Raton World Tai Chi Day event in Red Reef Park at the Wedding Pavilion. Have some fun. Make some friends. See some friends. Build a peace bridge. Do some Trance Tai Chi, too (mellow electronic dance music and tai chi). Free & Parking Fee Waived when you say Boca Raton World Tai Chi Day. More details at

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Diane Gold, Founder of Warriors of Weight, Turning Habits Into Health, has been a mentor in tai chi, kung fu and meditation, has been a music, fitness and stress expert, dedicated mom, studying peaceful conflict resolution, habit replacement and has been certified in plant-based nutrition.

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Dear Organic Produce Retailer


By Diane Gold

Dear Organic Produce Retailer,

I wanted to ask if you could be of service to me and to do me, 5,000,000 vegans and anyone who has a food allergy to beeswax, propolis or lac beetle.

When I come in to your store, which is very often daily; my main buy is organic produce. Sometimes, when I am lazy, I will buy a non-GMO food item in a package with organic ingredients. It is never a great idea to buy things in packages, so I am not promoting this action.

Organic Produce RetailerSo, back to the produce aisle. I go to the organic fruit or veggies. When I see something I wish to eat, I need to find out what kind of wax coating is on it. The FDA (Food and Drug Administration) has a very biased and inferior regulation about how wax coating has to be labeled. It is not adequate or useful for me. Here, in Title 21 of the Code of Food Regulations 101.4, it says,

“(22) Wax and resin ingredients on fresh produce when such produce is held for retail sale, or when held for other than retail sale by packers or repackers shall be declared collectively by the phrase “coated with food-grade animal-based wax, to maintain freshness” or the phrase “coated with food-grade vegetable-, petroleum-, beeswax-, and/or shellac-based wax or resin, to maintain freshness” as appropriate. The terms “food-grade” and “to maintain freshness” are optional. The term lac-resin may be substituted for the term shellac.”

We, the consumer, rarely see these signs. They are required to be on the produce boxes which may not be on display. Or, if they are on display, many times, because of exemption or display configuration or some nebulous reason I don’t know, the information is missing or hidden. So, that is not helpful and, often times, breaks a regulation, and may put the consumer in danger.


That is not the worst for me, though. As you can read above, food grade vegetable wax is grouped together with petroleum wax, beeswax, and lac beetle resin. If I can consume products with food grade vegetable wax, I ¬am OK. I might even opt for petroleum wax even though it’s not good for me, but it’s not put on organic produce. To consume beeswax or lac beetle resin would not be good for me. I could become terribly sick.


My real focus is killing less, so, if it is not necessary, I do not choose to use product that uses bees or beetles.


So, here’s the issue with every organic produce retailer I have ever seen: the retailer doesn’t list the FDA’s basic, useless verbiage quoted above from Title 21. This is because only the finisher (packer) has to put it on the box – sometimes. What this means is that when I go into my organic produce retailer and want to buy food, I have to look at the name of the farm that supplied the particular produce (many times by having to ask rather than by seeing it on display) and contact the farm before making a purchase. I have to ask whether the farm uses beeswax or lac beetle in the wax.

Sometimes, these companies say,

“We don’t know. You have to call the product distributor/finisher/packer;”

sometimes they say,

“We don’t know at all; you will have to call back when so-and-so is here;”

sometimes they say,

“We have someone who knows that, but s/he is not here now;”

and rarely they say,

“Yes, we know that,”

and give me an answer on the spot.

Of course, in order to make the original phone call, I have to look up the phone number of the farm. This means internet searching while shopping or asking the store manager to look it up. Then, the farm has to be open for business at the time I want to call, and the person who knows answers has to be available.


What is so complicated about this, and doesn’t have to be, is that the organic produce retailer changes the product it buys on an almost daily basis, based on season, price, availability and demand. So, after calling a farm about a particular type of produce that is available at retailer 123, the next day when I visit retailer 123; I will probably have to call a new farm for the same type of produce, since one order of produce lasts only so long. And the retailer buys only as much as it can sell without its going bad. And if I move on to organic produce retailer 456, a different crop from a different farm may be available.

Growers only grow so much, so retailers may buy from one farm one day and another farm the next day. This complication causes me to have to make phone calls every day in order to find out which organic produce has vegetable wax only on it. If the retailer has enough of this product, I might be able to buy the same type of produce supplied by the same farm for a week. With repeat buys of produce from a farm I have called, I am in luck. I don’t have to call again for a good 6 months – to see whether the farm has changed its waxing policy.

But, so often I have to call, at least, one company per visit to a store. And, 9 out of 10 times, I will have to leave the produce and wait for a call back from the farm or the finishing company. When I finally get the call a day or two later (or not at all as is common), it will be too late to buy the particular farm’s produce because the retailer will be sold out.


What if my dear organic produce retailer had a list, a list of all the ingredients in every wax that was on every piece of produce? It would be easy to get for the big retailer. As part of the buying arrangement with the farm and/or a finisher:

1) the retailer could require the farm and finisher to disclose the type of wax IN WRITING WITH DATE that is on each type of produce from that particular farm or finisher, including, and most importantly, the source of the ingredients that make up the wax, before the retailer makes a buy.

How much easier would it be for the retailer to add that stipulation into a purchase agreement than it would be for lots of individual consumers to have to, on a daily basis, or as long as retailers change farms, take the following steps:

0) find the phone number of the farm that grew the produce I want
1) call the new farm of the day (since retailers change farms so often)
2) wait on hold
3) find out that the farm is not the finisher (packer)
4) have to look up the number of the finisher
5) call the finisher
6) wait on hold
7) find that the finisher does not know the source of the item being used because it is manufactured by another company
8) get a company name that actually makes the wax
9) look up the number of the actual manufacturer
10) call the company that makes the wax
11) wait on hold and have to be called back
12) wonder when a call back will come
13) then have to call again when no call back comes
14) explain what I want again
15) wait on hold and have to be called back
16) wonder when a call back will come
17) get a call back
18) find out the person who called doesn’t know the source information because their company buys some of the ingredients from separate suppliers
19) get the names of all the external suppliers
20) look up the numbers of these externals
21) call the external suppliers, one by one

Etc., Etc. Etc.


Dear Organic Produce Retailer,

Organic Produce Retailer Wax ListPlease hear me and arrange to carry a source list of wax. You are large and powerful, so your farms and finishers will want your business and will do what you ask. I would help you if you asked. What if I am allergic to lac beetle and don’t see the sign that says the word “shellac,” made from lac beetle because it is on the box in the back, out of sight?

Or what if I don’t know that shellac is lac beetle? It could become catastrophic. Or what if the beeswax contains propolis (bee glue, which it usually does) and I stopped breathing from an allergic reaction?

The FDA will only change regulations if I can prove that thousands of people are allergic to something. Much easier for you to help by making a list.

And what about my peace of mind? The FDA does not base its decisions on philosophy, only medical study. So, the psychological wellness of 5,000,000 actual vegans is not the FDA’s criteria. Nor is it the FDA’s way to change regulations for the allergy of one individual person. But why? Isn’t it my FDA? Doesn’t it serve me?

Dear Organic Produce Retailer, since you have at your fingertips the ability to make the quality of all of our lives considerably more excellent, please do it. We will love you more for it. Thanks.



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Diane Gold, Founder of Warriors of Weight, Turning Habits Into Health, has been a mentor in tai chi, kung fu and meditation, has been a music, fitness and stress expert, dedicated mom, studying peaceful conflict resolution, habit replacement and has been certified in plant-based nutrition.

She believes retailers have a responsibility to provide us with knowledge as well as food. She says,

“Please ask your organic produce retailer to start compiling a list of wax and sources of wax on organic produce. We might be able to motivate our retailer because the “other” organic produce retailer already has a list.

“Most people in produce departments were raised in the era where they are not teachers. Let’s help them become teachers by asking them to get the information for us. Then they can teach future generations to supply this information and give us what we deserve.

“As always, let’s take overall good care of each other and ourselves – including loving ourselves and our fellow beings at all costs – because we are all always worth it.”

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What’s On Your Produce – Part II


By Diane Gold


What's On Your ProduceWhether we are parents, teachers, concerned friends; we have to be knowledgeable about what’s on your produce, that is, our produce. In order to be knowledgeable, we have to have knowledge.

It is clear that we don’t get the full picture from a very young age on which we can build as we understand more. This is absurd, and only we can change this by mentioning it.

So I am mentioning it. I have previously talked about this subject in
What’s On Your Produce – Part I in Issue 147, September 23, 2014. Here’s Part II.

Let’s consider ethics in the food business, not just that raising animals means killing animals; but that being the nurturer of the soil to produce plant food means not using toxins that will inevitably poison the people who eat the food, the land on which it’s grown and the water that we drink or our waterways that sustain life.


It is imperative that we talk about these important things and that we discuss these facts with our preschoolers. Here, we focus on what’s on your produce.

1) In order to grow food, we must properly prepare the soil so that predatory bugs and microbes will not come to eat our crop.

2) To end up with great plants that do not have questionably toxic pesticides on them, we have to plan several years ahead to get soil in workable condition so that the wrong bugs don’t come, or we can plan ahead and begin our vertical farms which may require NO SOIL which means NO BUGS.

3) Since we have limited funds, we want to save money up front, not thinking that the cost of pesticides later will equal the cost of preparing the soil up front. It seems more expensive up front, so we don’t prepare the soil. Then, when insects and micro-organisms do appear, we go into debt by spending huge amounts of money on pesticides that may be toxic to our health, rather than fixing our soil at that time.

4) New farmers, whether they be single farmers or agricultural giants, do not learn from the mistakes of their foreparents because no one is teaching it. This keeps the pesticide cycle going and going.


Myth: organic produce is pesticide free.
Organic produce is not pesticide free. Its pesticides are made without synthetics. That means, unless we grow it ourselves, it has pesticides on it, except in rare cases. Sadly, I just read a blog article that would seem to have been researched, even though there are only a few references to actual studies. In it, it states that organic produce is pesticide free. With people putting info out there incorrectly, we have to work twice as hard to output what’s correct.

5) Giant pesticide companies can double as seed producers. These companies genetically alter seeds to be used with their pesticides. These GMO seed companies teach us that we need pesticide products to control our crop. Apparently, there are some ground breaking, ethical farmers who have proven this to be untrue.


Why is it that we are not taught the cycle of soil and seeds and successful growth without pesticides? We need to know about this as children so that we can question the use of pesticides and make changes to the way we produce produce.

There is a favorite website of mine called It is quite shocking to see that some of the seemingly healthiest crops in the world have tragically high amounts of pesticide on them. Even if this pesticide imbalance continues, shouldn’t we know about this from an early age? Is it ethical that there is a term called,

“pesticide tolerance?”

What's On Your Produce - Protect Our WaterwaysAre we lab rats for which assessment must be made that if pesticides on a food rise beyond our tolerance level, we will die? Or should we protect ourselves should we protect our waterways which means, ultimately, our drinking water?

Wouldn’t a better solution be not to use pesticides but to work together with nature?


1) STUDY how some farmers do not need pesticides.

2) GROW one edible plant in a pot with no fertilizer or GROW one edible plant in the nature of a vertical farm, with no soil.

3) TELL one young person about the fact that pesticides are not clearly discussed early enough in school and have a discussion. Hopefully, the youngster will have had a progressive teacher and be able to teach you some things.

4) MENTION the idea that we don’t learn about pesticides when we are young to your friends.

5) KNOW more about what’s on your produce.

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If you wish to share your story, leave it as a comment under an article at or even better, write your own article and put it up on a free wordpress site (, or post it on a social media site. Share yourself.

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Know that you can reach out to a fellow human, probably to the person right next to you. If that interaction works out poorly, do it again. It’s worth it, since most people are nice and want to connect with you.

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Diane Gold, Founder of Warriors of Weight, Turning Habits Into Health, has been a mentor in tai chi, kung fu and meditation, has been a music, fitness and stress expert, dedicated mom, studying peaceful conflict resolution, habit replacement and has been certified in plant-based nutrition.

She believes we deserve to know what’s in and on our food. Thus, Part II of What’s On Your Produce arrives. She says,

“My modus operandi is always to save animals from death by human, my first and foremost reason to be vegan. But that doesn’t include the what’s in it for me scenario. So here it is: eat plants because they are better for the body and mind and eliminate many, if not most, chronic diseases.

“That being said, when we eat our plant food, we must be educated as to what is normal and what is not. It is not enough to think that buying organic plants saves us from pesticides. It does not. Organics use substances that are the same or similar to the chemical products. They are not from person-made substances, but they are similar. And, on produce, in particular, as the Part I, Issue 147 article emphasizes, so much of our produce is coated with a wax-like substance to keep moisture in for travel, including organics (which might be more likely to abuse bees to acquire this substance because they use beeswax coating on most citrus fruits).

“Whatever we think, it is crucial that we teach our children about what’s on your produce, that is, our produce. This is so they can know it’s not normal to choose to eat chemicals, harvested from nature or synthetic, if we can opt to have food that has none, and so they can change it.

“Check out the Vertical Farms article for the perfect way to grow produce with no sprays, chemicals or wax.

“And, in doing so, we get to take overall good care of each other and ourselves – including loving ourselves and our fellow beings at all costs – because we are all always worth it.”

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Learning How To Learn: Our Biggest Mistake


By Diane Gold

Learning How To LearnI can’t stress enough the importance of learning how to learn and how important it is to teach this from the start. Whether we are raised through education at home or by going to public or private school, one thing stands out: we each see through a different set of eyes. And our biggest mistake is not making first learners aware so they can decide for themselves the bias of their lessons. Learning How To Learn


When we teach young people or mature folks for the first time, we sometimes throw information at them without orienting them to the process of learning. This process includes understanding how learning works. As first time learners, we trust everything we are given, unless we are taught to look at the educational provider. It is crucial that each elementary teacher ingrain in each student the idea that everyone, including teachers, judges, parents and ourselves, sees with new eyes. We give information with the color of what we believe to be correct and true. And, it’s hard to teach this because we want first learners to trust us.

The process of learning I refer to is the understanding that not every bit of what we are taught is correct, honest and offered with benevolence. Sometimes, teachers, judges, parents want us to think a certain way, so we teach the subject as if there is only one set of information possible. Most of us reach full adulthood before we understand the dangers of blind faith.


Learning How To Learn - Just BornI am the first one to have blind faith and that most of us are good, nurturing and positive. The faith I would blindly follow, though is the understanding that we are all human, and humans, sometimes, without even knowing it, have internal agendas. When we are just born, we have not been influenced enough to be deceitful. After that, we can trust that the human spirit can be fickle. We can be blindly faithful in knowing that we all do our best to pass on the lesson, although doing our best usually includes our being influenced by how we have chosen to perceive the world.


The very purpose of martial arts training is to learn how to learn. It is usually appropriate to say relearn how to learn because the sad truth is most of us have to figure this out after we are grown, never having been exposed to this process of learning by most teachers’ being more concerned with disseminating their version of material than with the process of how to look at learning. We can use this martial arts systematic approach when learning everything.

So, the first thing we say in the martial classroom is,
Learning How To Learn - Become Empty

“Become empty. Place any preconceived notions, movements, feelings outside the door.”

This is done so that the student begins the lesson with as little coloration or influence from knowledge we already have or think we have. Executing this directive allows us to remove some of the bias that may arise from old information. And, herein is the crux of learning (or relearning) how to learn.


Learning How To Learn - Have All Views PresentLet’s say we are going to hear a panel on whether it’s a good idea to genetically modify foods. As at any debate, we would hope to have all views present. In this case, the head speaker is the director of genetically modified foods industry, one panelist is in that person’s pocket and the third panelist is known not to speak out about GMOs.

The listeners of this panel would think that, if this panel is at a large convention that is known for being socially conscious, all sides would be represented. If we are learning about GMOs for the first time, whatever is said on that panel would sway our understanding. And there will never be a sign saying,

“This panel does not represent all sides of this discussion.”

If we understand the process of learning as part of our repertoire, we will be informed, not manipulated because we will consider the bias that is built into the discussion.


Another example occurs when the teacher asks the students to close their eyes as they are standing on a boardwalk, low to the sand. S/he then removes two wooden boards right in front of them, which means, if they step forward, will land them on their butts in the sand. Because the students’ eyes are closed, they cannot see this board removal. The teacher then says that, for this exercise, the words “move forward” will represent the concept “stay still.”

The teacher then says,

“Move forward.”

All the students stay still, remembering the phrase “move forward” as meaning “stay still,” except one. This one student was busy daydreaming during the initial “move forward” instruction, and he loses his footing and lands in the sand.

Straying from focus, being distracted has caused this one student to falter.


Learning How To Learn - A Great RecipeIn order to work this idea of emptying ourselves so that we can fill ourselves with knowledge, a basic learning how to learn principal; we must come up with some trust system by which we live. The one I live by is that we blindly believe that we all do our best, but we are not perfect and show understanding when someone else is not or when we, ourselves, are not.

Here is what I believe is a great recipe for learning how to learn or relearning how to learn:

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Diane Gold, Founder of Warriors of Weight, Turning Habits Into Health, is a mentor in tai chi, kung fu and meditation, a music, fitness and stress expert, dedicated mom, studying peaceful conflict resolution and habit replacement, certified in Whole-Foods Plant-Based Nutrition.

She believes that the most important thing we can learn is that we all look from our own eyes, and we are taught by people who are looking through their eyes. She says,

“It’s hugely important for first learners to realize that can trust people to be human. We will all tell our own story. And, though it’s paramount that children trust teachers, we have to find a way to teach them about their own view and the joy of questioning ours.

“Our goal is not to repress but to make thriving, thinking, creating scientists and social scientists. So, it should be our pleasure to spell out the art of learning how to learn. It also should be our thrill to be part of the art of relearning how to learn.

“In the meantime, let us all take good care of ourselves, because we are so worth it!”

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Nut Milk Made Easily


By Diane Gold

Nut milk made easily is a fantastic discover. It is tasty, full of nutrients and loaded with fiber and phytochemicals. Yum.


Nut Milk Made EasilyNut milk is one of the most delicious, nutritious foods I have ever had the pleasure of ingesting, and, of late, of preparing. Until about a week ago, I had always bought nut milk: almond milk, flax milk, soy milk. The process began when I no longer chose to drink flax milk that was not organic. I had been happily buying this wonderful flax milk whose manufacturers promised they were working on putting out an organic version.

So, I switched to organic almond milk. Through researching the gum ingredients present in both the old flax milk and the new organic almond milk, I came to a conclusion. I no longer wanted to eat xantham gum and gellan gum. More than these gums’ being genetically modified, they were made from bacteria which I no longer chose to buy in my food. (True, when I go out to eat, I get all sorts of GMOs, bacteria and non-organics. But the socialization is worth it!)


As with anything to succeed, we have to take one step, only one. With this in mind, I went back to the health food store representative who had talked to me about the ease of making nut milk. She was from that health food store that carries (on average) 70% genetically modified products but has many organics and fair trade principles and is one of not too many choices for consistent organics, some non-GMO certification and fair trade.

The rep I spoke with was raised as a plant-based, raw food eater and makes her own nut milk. She reiterated how easy it was to make it and said that a good proportion of filtered water to nuts or seeds is probably 4:1, that is, 4 measures of water to 1 measure of nuts or seeds. I had a framework and a simple instruction of what to do.

Nut Milk - Organic Cotton The instruction included the use of some type of straining cloth as for tofu or gauze which I didn’t have so I haven’t been using, plus my smoothies are always very thick and full of seed fiber. Another interesting thing is that it is not very common to find organic cotton tofu cloth. This means the alternative would somewhat defeat the idea of using organically grown, non-GMO, nuts or seeds, since most cotton is genetically modified and would have the distinction of being certified non-GMO if it were organic. So I had hesitated in the past.

But, since my morning breakfast consists of whole seeds, ground seeds and liquid; I have a very un-smooth smoothie and decided straining was unnecessary. And so, I was ready.

By the way, there are phytochemicals in the skin of some nuts that help the body with many functions; therefore, straining them out may reduce their effect.

Nut Milk - My Ratio Of 4 To 1 For Nut MilkI put 2 cups of filtered water in a glass with a little more than a half cup of almonds, fulfilling my ratio of 4 to 1 for nut milk. I found some chlorine-free parchment paper and covered the glass. I still haven’t figured out a way to stabilize the covering, but I put the glass in the refrigerator overnight. The next morning, I put the water and the almonds in the blender and blended for about a minute. What I got was thicker than the store bought variety nut milk, was a lovely organic, perfectly fresh nut milk and did not contain any of the gums or supplements possibly made from the synthetics that are allowed by the Organic Board. And, look, Mom and Dad, I made it myself.

I was excited, and I hope you are getting excited. Because nut milk is easy. And, if we use vanilla, cacao, raspberry or any other plant flavors, we can make it exciting for flavor buffs, newcomers and kids.


Nut Milk - We Love Ourselves And Care About Our HealthThere’s one great reason to drink nut milk: we love ourselves and care about our health. According to the Physicians Committee For Responsible Medicine, 75% of the world (25% in the US) is lactose intolerant. This is true because most of us lose our lactase enzyme (present in babies and toddlers) which allows us to successfully break down milk for use by the bloodstream. So, some of us, after age 3, cannot break down milk and notice difficulty in drinking it.


(For my mental health, I prefer not to enslave cows, when we have alternate sources of food.)

There’s a lot of research done on the association of the protein in cow’s milk, casein, and the development of cancer. According to T. Colin Campbell’s The China Study and other research by other academic, dietary and cancer institutions; a modest level of casein can activate cancer cells that might otherwise have just lived quietly in our body til the end of time.


Nut Milk - I Can Make Nut MilkAside from the health aspects, nut milk made easily is a supreme convenience for me. It means I can make nut milk as long as I have nuts and a blender.

If we use flax seeds, we can extend our money by 3 times the store bought variety, and there is no organic flax milk I know of without those gums about we spoke. Although I wanted to learn how to make flax milk, I switched from almonds so that I didn’t use up all my money. To make organic almond milk from my rough calculation and dependent upon where we shop the organic almonds) costs about the same as the store bought variety or 25% more, but the almond milk tastes amazing and fresh.

I am going to calculate the cost of flax milk, since that is what I’ve been drinking. I’m using a ratio of 5:1 since flax is thick.

1 bag of organic golden flax seeds costs $4.29 and contains 24 oz, 48 tbsp.

I use 1/2 cup of seeds, which has been turning out to be about 5 tbsp. to my 2.5 cups of water.

If I keep it very rough for math ease, this means I get (almost) 10 servings per bag. (It would be exact if I had 50 tbsp.)

Each serving is 20 oz. (2.5 cups of water).

A container of flax milk (or organic almond milk) at 64 oz. is about $4.29.

Again being rough for math ease, that means I get 3 1/4 servings from the store container.

But I get just under 200 oz. (20 X 10) with my home-made variety. That’s equivalent to just under 3 X the amount of milk.

For people who are watching wallets (and that’s most people), flax milk is the way.


Nut Milk - I Soak Flax Seeds OvernightI soak flax seeds overnight, and then, I grind them to break open the hulls. This is a mess. But, I like it. It’s less money than buying the high speed machine that devours every part of every food so grinding is not needed.

The reason that grinding wet flax seeds is messy is because their consistency turns into gelatinous substance. Fascinating, but it’s hard to clean out the grinder.




1) Get some organic nuts or seeds.

2) Soak them overnight to break down their walls for easier absorption and to rid them of their natural toxins.

3) If they have hard hulls, grind them first. Then, after grinding or for those hulls that don’t need grinding; put them in the blender, along with their water.

4) Strain the solids out and/or drink them with the milk.

5) Enjoy!

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Diane Gold, Founder of Warriors of Weight, Turning Habits Into Health, is a mentor in tai chi, kung fu and meditation, a music, fitness and stress expert, dedicated mom, studying plant-based nutrition in certificate course, peaceful conflict resolution and habit replacement.

She finally took a step toward nut milk. She says,

“I am always talking about talking one step. I have been considering making nut milk and finally took the one step. I have only made flax seed milk and almond milk, but I am excited about making more. I also drank the water that was left from cooking my organic chick peas. Because of its deliciousness, I am being stimulated to do more experimenting with foods.

“Many things come from just one step. I will keep everyone posted on the nut milks, and I hope I hear about your adventures, too.

“Finally, let us all take good care of ourselves, because we are so worth it!”

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Turmeric In The Modern World


By Diane Gold


Turmeric BenefitsTurmeric benefits have been known in India for thousands of years. This spice has been used by many tribes, throughout many cultures with a myriad of applications. It spread from India to China to the East Indies (it’s naturalized in Jamaica now), to Polynesia, Hawaii, East Africa, West Africa and is a staple in many kitchens and medicine chests.


Turmeric is not the only healing spice, but it does have superior applications. It is generally known as an anti-inflammatory, aiding with pain in the joints.

According to a 6-month study of 226 subjects, a double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial in Thailand, published Nov., 2013, in the Journal Of Nutritional Biochemistry; subjects in the non-placebo group reduced body weight, glucose and bad cholesterol (LDL-C) while increasing good cholesterol (HDL-C). The improvement was slight, but it was an improvement. Also, ALT levels lowered, indicating improved liver function.

Turmeric Showed An Increase In AdiponectinIn the abstract of the study reported in Journal Of Nutritional Biochemistry, it states that this 6-month use of turmeric showed an increase in adiponectin levels increased and a decrease in leptin levels. These hormones, in the reported measures, are distinctly connected with lowered appetite, indicating a possible reason for lowered weight with the use of turmeric in Type 2 diabetics.

Also published in Journal Of Nutritional Biochemistry, January 5, 2012, is a study that shows where curcumin, the main ingredient in turmeric, protects against thioacetamide-induced hepatic fibrosis (liver scarring). The administration of curcumin to mice, in the study, induced apoptosis (cell death) in the damaged liver cells, probably due to curcumin’s ability to suppress inflammation.

Curcumin And Alzheimer's PatientsTurmeric, or its main ingredient, curcumin, may positively affect brain function in Alzheimer’s patients. The NIH abstract from a study published in Annals of Indian Academy Of Neurology, Jan-Mar, 2008, ( says,

“…oxidative stress, free radicals, beta amyloid, cerebral deregulation caused by bio-metal toxicity and abnormal inflammatory reactions contribute to the key event in Alzheimer’s disease pathology. Due to various effects of curcumin, such as decreased Beta-amyloid plaques, delayed degradation of neurons, metal-chelation, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and decreased microglia formation, the overall memory in patients with AD has improved.”

This is a huge statement and deserves tremendous attention.

In an almost insignificant study (except for the 3 people in it), published in Vol. 33, Issue 4, of Ayu, a quarterly journal on Ayurvedic Medicine, 3 Alzheimer’s patients improved their behavioral and psychological symptoms after taking 3 months of 763 mg of turmeric powder daily in pill form. Each could recognize her/his family after one year, although there is no concrete proof that this phenomenon was caused by the turmeric.

There are many studies that show this type of immune response on cancer cells, others that focus on digestive improvements, anti-oxidant qualities, National Institutes of Health, ( states that turmeric can cause slow clotting of blood, but much research is still needed with larger human subject populations.


Turmeric Is Not PatentableVery important for turmeric’s survival as a NON-PHARMACEUTICAL substance, is the United States patent that was given to University of Mississippi in 1995 for wound healing that, in 1997, due to a piracy complaint by The Council for Industrial Research stating that turmeric had been in use for thousands of years in India, was REVOKED.

According to a simple interpretation of Diamond vs. Chakrabarty, 447 U.S. 303 (1980) (, the Supreme Court ruling,

“Living things are not patentable subject matter under 101,”

although this is not a complete statement. According to the Patent Website, at, Section 101, referred to in the quote, speaks about human intervention as the clear indicator of whether a living thing is patentable.

It would seem how very liberal the language actually is and how easy it would be for a brilliant pharmaceutical attorney to create a patentable circumstance for any living thing, based upon language. Scary.

Make Lots Of Money After The Clinical TrialThe only way a drug company would output the median amount per drug development, $350 million (according to Forbes’ Aug. 11, 2013, article citing Innothink Center For Research In Biomedical Innovation with the statistic) for a substance to be approved by the FDA (Food And Drug Administration) to market would be if the outcoming drug were patentable.

This drug or substance would have to go through multi-phased clinical trials and rigorous company work which often ends up costing $802 million (statistic at up to $5 billion (, August 11, 2013). Only if a company can make lots of money after the clinical trial is over to recover the research money spent to develop the drug will a company go ahead.

Since turmeric is currently available as a naturally occurring substance and shown not to be patentable, it’s not being developed for prescription. Therefore, the big drug companies don’t study turmeric for all its benefits (and its main ingredient, curcumin) because huge profit after the expensive study would only be possible if the formulation carried a high price tag, only possible with patentability.


Let’s get those turmeric benefits. There are so many applications for healing and in food. Since I am not a cook, although I am acquiring limited cooking and rawing skills, there are many wonderful places turmeric belongs in food. When using it from the raw ingredient, as always, we get the most nutrient for our effort. It’s no wonder that its introduction was welcomed in so many places throughout the world. from India to China to East Indies (it’s naturalized in Jamaica) to Polynesia, Hawaii, East Africa, West Africa.

Organic turmeric has no pesticides, however, the soil where much turmeric is grown may still contain lead. It can come from industrial emissions, auto emissions (if you’re in Algeria (phaseout by 2014), Iraq (phaseout by 2015), Myanmar, North Korea, Yemen that still allow lead gas), plumbing pipes, paint. Just be aware of the possibility of lead, and eat some cilantro paste for a week to clear it out.

Grate My TurmericAll in all, turmeric is great. I eat it every day. It’s one of the few veggies I eat that I will buy even if it’s not organic – because turmeric is good for me and even though, in 2008, the Hungarian Food Safety Office reported a crop of Thai turmeric to contain over 10 times their acceptable level of the pesticides methomyl and thiobicarb.

I’m always on the lookout for organic, so I can grate my turmeric and put it in my hemp protein breakfast. I’m certain the turmeric may be acting as an anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, anti-cancer substance in my body. It’s certainly good for my mind to think so, anyway, especially with all those small, but promising, studies available, past and present.


1) Get some organic turmeric, grate about 1/2 an inch, and put it in a smoothie. Enjoy.

2) Find a cool recipe that includes turmeric, and make it.

3) Notice whether you have mercury in your teeth, work around lead or whether your soil has lead in it. If you don’t have lead in the soil, plant a seed of something to eat. If you do, grow something to eat in an inside terrarium.

That’s it. Now, be healthy, you are already spiritually wealthy and be wiser than you were a moment ago.

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Diane Gold, Founder of Warriors of Weight, Turning Habits Into Health, is a mentor in tai chi, kung fu and meditation, a music, fitness and stress expert, dedicated mom, studying plant-based nutrition, conflict resolution and habit change.

She believes that she is learning more about nutrition on a daily basis. She says,

“It is such a privilege to be researching the food I eat and to be able to eat the food I eat. I find out how polluted are so many food items that I hadn’t considered: lead in farm soil, heavy metals in salt, we never know when our turmeric is tested for lead, even the organic kind.

“I have gone over lots of material that shows great benefits from turmeric. I am certain it is one of the reasons I am feeling strong, and it’s probably giving me a daily detox which lead me to work more efficiently on peaceful conflict resolution.

“Thank you to everyone for giving me a reason to do this research. It’s fascinating, and the food is just mahvelous!

“Finally, let us all take good care of ourselves because we are so worth it!”

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Patient Rights vs. Doctor’s Orders


By Diane Gold

Patient rights vs. doctor’s orders is an issue very much ignored. We have been raised with the habit of accepting doctor’s orders, to believe ethics are important to our doctor and that s/he believes in patient’s rights. Growing up in the New York Metropolitan area, I was raised that way. But, that was 50 years ago.

Through the years, though, I now know it is my duty to myself and others to gather my own information about my health, including recommendations from qualified doctors and many other sources.

VIOLATION OF PATIENT RIGHTSViolation Of Patient's Rights

So, here I am, in 2014, being all sophisticated and thinking I am completely prepared to make my own choices about what drugs I allow into my system, what tests I consent to have, what health care providers and process I choose for my ultimate health care.

So I choose to go to a breathing specialist because I had what felt like phlegm (sorry, gross) somewhere around my vocal cords, and my vocal range (how high and low I can sing) had seriously diminished (which could be from age). So I walk into the doctor’s office to have a breath test because the previous week, I had consented to it with this specialist.

So, the tech directed me to sit in a booth where we go to breathe into a machine to measure lung capacity, and the technician asked me to blow into something outside the machine. No explanation of anything we were about to do.

I did not have my glasses on so did not see that I could have been about to blow into something with drugs in it. My fault, absolutely, since I know no one will advocate for my patient’s rights as well as I will. I stuck my head outside the booth and breathed into what the tech had in her hand and immediately felt dizzy. I asked if I had just inhaled a drug and received the answer,


I asked which drug to which I got the reply,


I objected that I had not been given the choice to inhale a drug or not before I got it and stated my objection and surprise.

Heart's RacingI finished the test with no major reactions and went on my merry way, although I felt violated. Almost immediately after leaving the medical office, I started feeling speedy. And then more speedy, and then more speedy, to the point where I was sweating with my heart’s racing; I knew I was sick and was having a reaction to albuterol.

I researched whether albuterol was close in structure to epinephrine to which I am allergic. Although it’s not, it causes similar issues, especially in people with sensitivities, like me. Somewhere, in the back of my mind, I recall being informed and refusing any drug for a similar test 3 years ago, although this refusal is not in my chart. Be it in there or not, this time, I was not informed that the test involved administration of a drug or that blowing into a hand-held device would administer the drug.

Unfortunately for me, the tech forgot to look at the epinephrine allergy in my chart and mistakenly administered this drug. But, the worst part was not being given the choice, even though the allergy note was sitting on the top of my chart waving a flag.

I had the good old American reaction to sue, sue, sue the doctor’s office. According to my attorney, the only way to sue for loss of work, pain and suffering, the actual few hundred dollars I might have lost for the day, not being able to work, or the sick time which I can never get back; would have been if I had had a heart attack, a major cardiovascular event like a stroke in response to the drug or died.


SolutionsSince I lived, my mind started to run away with me, and I thought about running to get my medical records for the attorney. I calmed down and realized a much better solution instead of pointing fingers, blaming and taking to the legal system I so revere.

My solution was to tell the doctor that I would agree not to write an expose, only a helpful article, and I would not call the county health commissioner or the doctor board or the AMA with complaints. I would also refrain from going to one of the health care rating websites to tell my tale since we are all human, and we all must recognize it’s our job to be diligent about making sure that doctors and staff read our charts and give us choices. It shouldn’t be our job to teach this; medical schools should make this ironclad. Because we have allowed doctors’ egos to forget us and dictate our care; they have been taught to give orders, and we have taken them. We all must change this.

I was pleased with my solution, much more lasting for many future patients, than an attempt to defame people who have worked hard for so many years and may learn their errors from this experience. I also requested to be placed on the local Hospital Ethics Committee with the doctor in this story, for which I await a response.


Doctor's Orders


Many of us believe the doctor and go with the doctor’s advice, because this is the habit with which we have been raised – trust the doctor, doctor knows best, the doctor is the expert, and doctors have the impressive answers. Some of us ask the doctor to proceed without explanation. Others of us listen to explanations and put them in our folder along with other advice. Some don’t have enough money to go to the doctor, although the Patient Protection And Affordable Care Act in the United States has had a positive impact.


Seduction Of The EgoAlthough the Hippocratic Oath, taken by every MD, includes keeping oneself away from seduction; the biggest seduction and the one most difficult to see as we are being seduced is the seduction of the ego, thinking we are the skilled, the almighty and the awakener with a better solution than the patient. The Osteopathic Oath mentions retaining the respect of the patient. If we are filled with ego and if we disrespect our patient’s rights, how are we fulfilling our oath?


It comes down to our taking responsibility for ourselves. Doctors can guide us and make us aware of the latest research studies, new pharma and their favorite integrated medical technique. But, we are truly the responsible party when it comes to our health. Who better than we can advocate for us?


Plant MedicineIn conclusion, it’s important to be aware that the doctor is a consultant from whom we can hear expert opinion. S/he has studied hard to be able to evaluate a certain brand and branch of medicine. Unfortunately, the doctor who has studied Eastern medicine, Western medicine, Native American medicine, Latin American plant medicine and international tribal medicine is in the best position to give medical guidance; but  I don’t know of any who have all this training.

The bottom line for all these medicines is that accepting doctor’s orders is only valid once each of us has done our research through reading or second or third opinions of other specialists. Since most of us don’t have the time, money or lifespan to live with the dis-ease; we usually go with the first doctor’s advice. That’s all well and good as long as we are given full and transparent information, time and encouragement in researching the recommendation and our other treatment choices and all choices are offered by a doctor or researcher with ethics and value for patient rights.


Here are several questions to ask your doctor that may help you evaluate whether your patient’s rights are important to your doctor. Any doctor who is not open to discussing the below may not be thinking enough about patient’s rights and you or your family member.

1)   I want to get a second opinion since you just gave me yours. How does this make you feel?

Any doctor who would feel slighted or annoyed at this very important right is suffering from ego seduction and needs to be advised so, whether by you or by someone. Make sure you do not suffer because of it since it is a patient’s right to explore as many options as s/he sees fit.

2)   I have found a health benefit from this nutritional strategy. Do you feel comfortable discussing it and do you value this type of medical strategy as much as your suggestions that are non-nutritional?Nutritional Strategy

3)   How much direct coursework, if any, were you required to do on nutrition in medical school? Did you do any nutritional coursework on your own?



Plant-Based Food IndustryWouldn’t it be nice if the plant based food industry were a cooperative in itself and could get a direct benefit from creating such a course for medical professionals the way pharmaceutical companies benefit directly from courses they give on their new drugs as solutions for specific diagnoses.



4)   Is your opinion more important than the patient and can you explain your answer?

5)   Would you give a patient who seemed to completely disagreed with you time to explain why s/he felt the way s/he did, or would you just write in the chart, “Patient refused treatment,” and move on to someone who was cooperative?

What feelings would the fact that the patient disagreed stir up in you?

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Diane Gold, Founder of Warriors of Weight, Turning Habits Into Health, is a mentor in tai chi, kung fu and meditation, a music, fitness and stress expert, dedicated mom, studying plant-based nutrition, conflict resolution and habit change.

She believes it is crucial to maintain personal ethics and that the more powerful we become, the stronger we must display our ethical stance. She says,

“While we are struggling to develop a work environment that feeds and clothes us as well as our families, we are busy finding our way. But, once we have passed this level, as I see it, if we choose to rise up as higher humans, it is our duty to humanity as a whole to demonstrate ethics in our daily decisions.

“As usual, I am not suggesting that we do nothing but pro bono work, nor am I suggesting we not make wonderful profits. I am saying that it is not sporting, that is, in good, ethical fashion, to prey upon those who are ignorant of their own rights. Prey upon someone who understands the preying field.

“What I’m saying is that it’s our duty to show right from wrong, even when circumstance, technicality or ignorance could have led to our easily taking advantage of someone with less or no knowledge.

“Living well within ourselves is the way. Let’s do it.

“Finally, let us all take good care of ourselves because we are so worth it!”

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The Habit Of Eating Meat May Be Hurting Us (And Our World)

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By Diane Gold

The Habit Of Eating MeatThe habit of eating meat is passed down from one generation to another, in most societies. Throughout the years, a symbol of abundance has become the finest steak dinner, so much so that, at one point, the overproduction of uric acid crystals between the joints known as gout, got the nickname “disease of the rich” because wealth often meant increased intake of animal proteins.


Plant-Based NutritionWhat is now becoming common knowledge, or is such to the Millenial generation and after, is that hunger and thirst could be contained if we increased our plant-based nutrition consumption; we could reduce many chronic diseases if we reduced or removed meat from our diet; our water footprint to farm livestock for food is sending the world economies on a downward spiral of water emergencies; especially in the latest generation, people are questioning whether it is ethical to eat meat (which could includes but is not limited to beef, pork, lamb, chicken, fish, bees).

This article looks at this global habit in relation to agribusiness, the pharmaceutical industry and education.


What would happen if the money spent on livestock feed were spent on growing extra food for people who needed food?

According to PETA:

1) Using an acre of land to raise cattle for slaughter produces 20 pounds of meat. This same acre could produce 365 pounds of soybeans, 17 times more food.

2) The resource to produce 1 pound of meat would produce 13 pounds of grain. That would feed an entire community, rather than 1 family.

Help Hunger By Replacing Our Meat Habit3) This year, 7100 children will die from a hunger-related disease per day. That’s 2.6 million for the year. We can help hunger by replacing our meat habit with some form of plant-based nutrition.



The use of antibiotics in livestock production has created highly resistant strains of bacteria (super bugs) which pass by touch to workers, from water supply contaminated by infected animal feces and from uncooked infected meat.

Because of the power of the food and pharmaceutical industries, the Food And Drug Administration (FDA), unlike the European Union, has never banned antibiotic use in animal production. It did, however, implement a regulation that asked the farm industry voluntarily to phase out the use of certain antibiotics.

Antibiotics Are Used In Animal FeedFor those not calculating, if antibiotics are used in animal feed, the drug companies get paid for their drugs and farmers get to fatten up their livestock more quickly from the antibiotics so they reduce feeding expense. This translates to a less healthy environment, chemically altered food and reduced health.


It is important to note that most super bugs that affect humans are obtained from overuse of antibiotics in humans.


There is much evidence that plant-based eating reduces obesity, diabetes, heart disease, cholesterol. Therefore, what about replacing the meat habit with plant-based foods for health and environment?

Check out more interesting facts here:


The statistics around the amount of water used to produce food are so unreliable since circumstances are always changing and it is a very tricky subject. It is true that the amount of water used for vegetables and livestock vary from one measure to another.

To produce 1 head of broccoli, 5.4 gallons of water are needed.

To produce 1 tomato, 3 gallons are needed.

According to the journal, Ecosystems, a study by M. Mekonnen and A. Hoekstra from U of Twente, Netherlands, beef uses 4 million gallons of water per ton. That means just under 40,000 gallons for a pound of meat. To break it down further, the study looked at the amount of “blue” water used. For veggies, 5.6 gallons of blue water is used to produce a pound. 20 gallons is used to produce a pound of fruit. And about 72 gallons are used to produce a pound of beef. These figures vary greatly, depending on the further breakdown within the category.

According to, the Department of Animal and Range Sciences at the South Dakota University measured that 1 cow may yield 84 pounds of steak quality meat, which means, more or less, 225 6 oz. meals or 336 4 oz. meals. The same amount of water produces 23,000,000 heads of broccoli.

And 70% of the water used in livestock industry is to grow animal feed; in California, this means alfalfa for cows. The sad thing is that, even though California is experiencing a water shortage, farmers are exporting alfalfa hay to Asia. (Show me the money!)

According to the Food And Agriculture Organization Of The United Nations, 70% of land that has been deforested in Latin America, which means, in part, the Amazon, is used for livestock grazing. The expense of the food for livestock is what makes the least sustainable sense.


I have had lively debate with a local doctor. He talks about how plants have feelings, or certainly, that they react to stimuli; and I talk about how I believe plants yield to us but should be thanked for their sacrifice. Certainly, we both agree that hurting animals is wrong.Plants Have Feelings

In my opinion, if vegan food is available to me; it is my duty to eat it. Were I in a North country with limited vegetation, would I eat fish or four-legged animals? I would, because it’s my duty to self-sustain; I would give thanks for the animal’s life I used for mine, the way I do with the plants I eat.

A fascinating fact is that Inuits in Greenland have low heart disease. They eat primarily proteins and fats from salmon, whale and seal with no sugars and no carbs. This statistic may come from their Omega-3 to Omega-6 ratio, which is balanced at 1:1, unlike in the West where we are Omega-6 (inflammatory) rich.


The habit of eating meat is like any other repetitive pattern we have. When we think about it, we may choose to change it in order to enhance our health, eat in a way that will help stop hunger, be examples of saving water so there will be some left for our grandchildren and modify our ethical actions.

Grateful For Whatever Food You EatInstead of blindly consuming food, just because it tastes good to us, we might want to consider the consequences of our actions. Not following in the footsteps of the past generations, we might want to evaluate the newest scientific evidence about food and nutrition. We might choose to realize that the dairy and meet industries have vast sums of money to promote the idea of eating meat or consuming dairy. Big media are friends with big dairy, big meat, big poultry and big pharma. These relationships may be cause for us to do our own research on whether the habit of eating meat needs a complete turnaround in 2014.


Here are several action steps that may serve all of us.

1) Check out the amount of Omega-6 and Omega-3 fatty acids you consume on an average day, shooting for 4 (Omega-6) : 1(Omega-3). The National Institute Of Science recommends a ratio of 10:1 in the United States. In my opinion, that’s because they are friends with agribusiness producers who make vegetable oils, sugars and other foods that imbalance the ratio. Other countries typically say 4:1 is OK, new evidence points to 1:1 being ideal.

2) Research a few hunger statistics, and consider replacing 1 meat meal weekly with a plant-based meal. You can go to the PETA website at, about half way down to the slider showing the ratio of elimination of eating animals to the amount of hunger that would go away.

Grateful For Whatever Food You Eat 23) Be grateful for whatever food you eat. This will bring positive feelings to the world, which may, in turn, create happier circumstances for all animals and plants, including ourselves.

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Diane Gold, Founder of Warriors of Weight, Turning Habits Into Health, is a mentor in tai chi, kung fu and meditation, a music, fitness and stress expert, dedicated mom, studying plant-based nutrition and habit change.

She is slowly realizing the importance of early education to impact environment when it comes to animal farming and proper nutrition. She says,

“Teachers have the absolute privilege of connecting the dots for young children to understand the world and how it works. What can be taught now to elementary school children is things like producing meat can use 10 times as much blue water as producing vegetables. And reducing meat consumption can reduce hunger.

“These real-life scenarios can help children to understand what most adults don’t due to lack of connecting the dots: that greed or over-consumption can keep the world out of balance and that a little self-control in each of us can heal the world one hungry child at a time. Our thoughtful actions can also create health in ourselves.

“With this knowledge, the youth, who are the change makers of the world, will be able to take meaningful actions based on seeing the full picture. But, will the education system – walking on tiptoes to maintain its funding – allow such teaching; and will the community – walking on tiptoes so that the major corporations lend a hand to sponsor local projects so local politicians look good – allow the open teaching that is needed? It will require patient work on the part of local educators. But, it’s worth it to educate students about the habit of eating meat and what issues surround it.”

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Food Labels-Next Generation In Nutritional Data

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By Diane Gold

Food LabelsFood labels, the next generation in nutritional data, is being proposed by the Food And Drug Administration. The changes to the nutritional label would help consumers identify food facts more easily, get a more realistic and up-to-date version of what a portion of food in the present day represents and know what sugars in a product are added and not part of the inherent make-up of the food.


I have been researching ingredients and labels since 1971 when I started querying manufacturers about from what source enzymes, lecithin, mono- and di- glycerides,  and the myriad of hard-to-pronounce substances. I wanted to know whether they came from an animal, vegetable, mineral, synthetic process. Back in those days, similar to now, many manufacturers did not know that information because they used whatever their suppliers supplied them based upon what was cheapest on the day of purchase.

1970s. The first labels came in the early 1970s when some companies began putting food information on the packaging.

1990. In 1990 came the Nutrition Labeling And Education Act, which required macronutrients on the label: protein, carbohydrates, fats and other data.

1996. The Food Quality Protection Act came in 1996 which regulated some of the pesticides in our food.

2011. The Federal Food, Drug And Cosmetic Act came with more regulation on pesticides, which came from updated reports of the harmful effects these pesticides had on humans and animals through the food they ate.

2014. The Food And Drug Administration has a proposal to upgrade food labels once again. After reading about the changes,


Go here to comment, agree, add, disagree:!docketDetail;D=FDA-2012-N-1210

and leave a comment. When we take action, change happens.



Serving Size Changes What we used to eat 20 years ago that was listed by FDA as one serving is being recognized as obsolete and totally inaccurate. Due to our larger servings or mislabeling originally, the portion size on the label is being increased. So, if we ate ice cream before the label changes, 1 serving would be 200 calories, half a cup, with 4 servings in the pint.

The proposed change would list 1 serving as 400 calories, 1 cup, with 2 servings per pint. If I were eating ice cream, which I do infrequently to curb the repercussions from this occurrence, my single serving could be 2 cups, 800 calories, 1 pint. And that’s not including any additional nuts, syrupy fruit, caramel or fresh, ice cream store ice cream.

With the proposed changed, the well-known brand of store-bought designer ice cream I just checked would go from serving size 1/2 cup to 1 cup, since most people don’t eat 1/2 cup.

It’s also possible the FDA will include a dual column label which would allot for accuracy of 2 different sized portions, like 1 cup serving or 2 cups (whole container for a pint) or, with soda, 12 oz. or 24 oz.


Dual Column Food LabelsThe term cup is helpful because it’s something we can measure. The term container keeps is nebulous since containers range in sizes.


Food labels have a column for sugars. What they don’t say is from where that sugar is derived. They don’t say whether it is from the natural orange in the ingredients or from some additional sugar, added during manufacturing. The FDA proposal asks for a sub-heading called Added Sugars. I believe it will be a percentage so that we will be left to figure out which are natural ingredients and which are added. This would mean we have to be aware that agave, agave nectar, barley malt syrup, beet sugar, brown rice syrup, brown sugar, cane or cane juice crystals, cane sugar, coconut sugar, coconut palm sugar, corn sweetener, corn syrup, corn syrup solids, dehydrated cane juice, dextrin, dextrose, evaporated cane juice, fructose, fruit juice concentrate, glucose, high-fructose corn syrup, honey, invert sugar, lactose, maltodextrin, malt syrup, maltose, maple syrup, molasses, palm sugar, raw sugar, rice syrup, saccharose syrup, sorghum syrup, stevia, sucrose, syrup, treacle, turbinado sugar, xylose are added sugars and sorbitol and maltitol are sugar alcohols.

Why do we care about added sugars?

The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 78 (suppl) 827s, 2003 said,
” … excess energy intake from added sugars can potentially lead to nutrient shortcomings, due to displacement of more nutrient-dense foods/beverages, and to weight.”

To clarify nutrient density, here’s Clemson University, South Carolina, Cooperative Extension Service’s definition,

“Foods that supply generous amounts of one or more nutrients compared to the number of calories they supply are called nutrient dense.”

So, if we’re gorging down sweetened soda, we are not ingesting glorious veggie juice, hydrating water or other healthy food that is not reaching us because we are full from nutritionless soda.

It’s important to be aware of ingredients that are sugar. If a product has more than one of these, the split in “actual sugar,” that is, a substance that turns carbs into glucose, gets lower on the label of ingredients since the highest percentage ingredients go first.


Calcium, Iron stay. Potassium, Vitamin D are added. Vitamins A and C will no longer required.


The amounts of nutrients needed per day will be updated to match the current scientific information we have.

Proposed FDA Food Label Changes


The daily values will be on the left side, more visible to the eye, and the serving size and calories will be bigger and bolder so that we become more aware of what our serving size actually is.

Personally, I would like to see every package show the total calories per package, like 1217 calories for a bag of 8 oz. fried, unsalted potato chips, so that when I buy them and eat them in one sitting, I am completely aware of the 79 grams of fat (25g of which is saturated) I consume. Calories are great since they give energy to the body; it’s where they come from that matters. And this one bag exceeds the amount of fat and saturated fat recommended for 1 person in 1 entire day.



Potato ChipsEating an entire bag of chips, on my part, is possible. It’s similar to my addictive ways with any substance. If I indulge in it once, I will want to indulge again the next day and will have to put forth a concerted effort to replace the potato chip buying behavior with another for, at least, a month, until, if I am lucky, the urge will go dormant again. When I do it, I usually buy baked (reducing the fat grams to 24 greasy grams), since fried will make me feel sick and the craving for grease will require more will power to replace.


What are not included in the proposed changes are the following:

1)   PROHIBITING NON-SCIENTIFIC VERBIAGE LIKE “NATURAL” AND “FRESH,” words that are meaningless and mislead the uneducated consumer to think these foods are better or organic. We depend upon it to regulate food and drugs, and, thus, should require scientifically founded language only with asterisk to the report on which it is based so that our health knowledge is never based on which company has the best marketing.

2)   REQUIRING HARVESTED AND MANUFACTURING DATE AND STATEMENT THAT SAYS SAFE IF USED BY, including the report on which this “use by” info is based. Currently, we have no way to know whether produce is left in a refrigerator for a year or not. With manufacturing, each decides on the length of time after completion date that is safe for a consumer. Therefore, we have no way to know on what data each farmer or manufacturer uses. We have a right to know and for it all to be consistently monitored.

3)   LISTING INGREDIENT SOURCES USED IN MANUFACTURING, gathering, packaging process and whether they are animal, plant, part-animal or -plant or synthetic, including defined guidelines for the words animal, vegetable, part and synthetic.
Take isinglass or other animal derivative finings in beer or wine which clears out cloudiness from yeast. There are also glycerol monostearate used for foam on the beer and honey or lactose for flavor. Since these additives exist, every manufacturer should be required to define whether or not its product contains any of these or other ingredients.

4)   LISTING THE SOURCE, for ingredients that typically have multiple sources. An example of this would be lecithin, without the word animal, soy or plant-based next to it. When the labels says lecithin, we are guessing at its source.  Another very common ingredient is mono-glycerides or mono-and di-glycerides, as they are commonly used together. These emulsifiers can come from animal, plant or synthesized process. If a product lists animal mono-glycerides, there would be no question as to its source, and people could make informed decisions without calling the manufacturer. As it is now, manufacturers only list the details of ingredients to avoid law suits from allergic reactions or if their profits come from a particular religious group that requires it. I would change the regulation to require producer disclosure on  all packaging.

5)   DISCLOSURE OF WAX AND POLISH, such as waxes on produce or polishing on vitamins tablets. Each manufacturer or produce finisher (the company that sprays wax on fruit before it goes to market) should be required to list the source of the ingredients that are used. Of course, this means that manufacturers would have to keep an up-to-date database of the sources of the ingredients from their suppliers.

Many people are not aware that apples, avocados, peppers are waxed. The wax may be plant-based, bee-based, petroleum-based or synthetic. We deserve to go to the store or market and get our food without having to call the food’s producer before eating it. The food industry is concerned with safety, as it should be. It would do well also to care about informing us of what we consume because we trust them.


We depend upon food labels all the time. Their accuracy is crucial for our education and that of children. Eating nutritionally is the one action that can maximize our health, more than any other act. The FDA has the ability to educate us with the nutritional data they approve on packages.


It’s great that there is an update coming on food labels. Let’s make some comments at:!docketDetail;D=FDA-2012-N-1210

to be personally involved, to make a difference and to speak out for what we believe.

There is a finite window for these comments before the proposal goes for a vote. So, let’s make them count toward the next generation of food labels.

If you wish to share your story, please hit reply in your email program to be contacted.

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Diane Gold, Founder of Warriors of Weight, Turning Habits Into Health, is a mentor in tai chi, kung fu and meditation, a music, fitness and stress expert, dedicated mom, studying plant-based nutrition and habit change.

She has been working with food manufacturers for 40 years, inquiring about information not shown on food labels. She says,

“I believe it is the food industry’s job to educate us: not at the expense of profit but, also, not at the expense of foregoing the latest science. The food labeling system should provide for more frequent label updates as the science comes in.

“The manufacturer and the farmer are our teachers in nutritional data. Let us use them wisely in this educational regard.
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Quitting A Habit!

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By Diane Gold

Quitting a habit! Quitting is such a simple word. It has two very different connotations, although they both mean the same thing. It means the act of stopping doing something. But, in our minds, it usually refers to stopping our current job or ceasing our current habit. We will focus on the habit.


When we use the word “quitting” for the cessation of a habit, it conjures up the image of life being sucked out of our bodies. Even thinking about stopping a habit feels as if we are going to lose something instead of gain something. Psychologically, these concepts direct our actions, so they are not just semantic observations that only have intellectual use. When we see we are going to get something; it can cause pleasure, and we are more likely to move toward it. On the other hand, when we are going to lose something; it can cause pain and we avoid it.

That’s why it’s much more advantageous for us to use the correct word and one that is more pleasing to our psyche: replacing. When we replace something, we maintain a feeling of abundance. This keeps us balanced and happy.


The truth is this:


This is not a bad thing, so please, let’s hold onto our hats and rejoice! It’s a reality that when we respond to an urge for something over and over again, it becomes a habit.

And, once we have learned it, we usually do not unlearn it. What we do accomplish is we replace it. And this is the interesting fact.


Replacing A HabitSo, here’s this task we have for ourselves. We have a habit, and we want to replace it.

One of the online dictionary’s defines replace as,

“Take the place of” and

“Put back in a previous position.”

I would edit the second definition to be,

“Put in position,”

merely because where the “something” is placed could be in an old or new area of our lives.


When it comes to habits, replacing and quitting are like opposite sides of the yin-yang symbol, where opposing forces make the whole.

Half Empty Or Half FullConsider the glass’ being half empty or half full concept. When the glass is full, we think of richness. The empty term, in Western terms, can speak to barrenness, although, in the Eastern way, emptiness is the way to abundance.

Deleting the term “quitting,” when it comes to habit change is a freeing experience. So many people are anxiety ridden when they think they have to quit something. Many fewer people are troubled when they think about replacing or doing a new behavior and keeping the attention on that new behavior.

In fact, the idea of focus comes into play. When we focus on quitting our old behavior, our mind is filled with all the old memories that go with the behavior. When we focus on replacing our behavior with the new one, we walk in the new direction, which is where we want to go.

There’s all that talk about keeping the eye on the target, the goal, the ball. It’s true that if we keep focused on the new behavior as if it comes naturally, eventually, with repetition, the replacement behavior will become natural, and we will have a new habit. Or, at least, we will get good at replacing it.


BoredomBe careful of the feeling of boredom. It can act as a built-in excuse for doing a certain behavior that is not good for us. We might think that if we had excitement rather than stagnation in our lives, we would not act out the behavior we wanted to change. We might even create the boredom to delude ourselves.

Boredom, in many cases, is the actual trigger that causes our over and over again behavior that becomes a habit. Rather than knowing there are an infinite amount of things we can do to lead full lives, it’s important to pre-plan one or two of them. That way, we will be armed against even the most common cues like boredom.


So, let’s get started and see how it feels.


1)   Pick one thing you wish to “put in position.” This means pick any habit you would like to replace, such as eating desserts or sleeping too much.

Urge To Eat DessertLet’s say we always get the urge to eat dessert. We can change our reaction to this trigger by planning another behavior in its stead, such as going jogging as soon as that urge is felt. This will begin the process of replacement. Repeating this behavior will turn it into a habit. By behaving consistently by jogging and not dessert eating, we will have replaced our old with the new behavior. Although this certainly is quitting acting out the old behavior from the sheer repetition of the act; it’s easier to accomplish by using the concept of “replace.”


2)   Keep a record of what time the urge occurs, what time you start the new behavior (like jogging) and how long you do the new behavior and each time this occurs for a week. If this is accomplished for a week, continue the process for another week, another week and another week.


3)   Promise yourself you will not judge whether it is just as difficult to do the new behavior a month later as it was on the first day. This feeling is not important. It just exists and doesn’t work only one way. For some people, it becomes easier with time to be automatic about doing your new behavior. For others, you will have to be deliberate in directing yourself to do your new behavior.

Just keep replacing. Each time you do, it’s OK to give yourself a high five in the mirror.


Think about quitting a habit. It reminds me of wrenching something from life. We have to do without which causes pain.

Now think about replacing a habit. Ever more gentle it is, causing some growing pains, yet not attacking our psyche in the same way.

Easiest PathOf course, when we want to do something new in place of some old habit, we want to give ourselves the easiest path to follow. That path involves planning one simple action that will be repeated over and over again. It also requires saying “replace” instead of “quit.”

Armed with these tools, we have every opportunity to have a pain-free experience of moving from one habit to another.

If you wish to share your story, please hit reply in your email program to be contacted.

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We value your feedback very much. Please leave  a comment below.

Please LIKE us on the website and at WarriorsOfWeight on Facebook. Thanks.
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Diane Gold, Founder of Warriors of Weight, Turning Habits Into Health, is a mentor in tai chi, kung fu and meditation, a music, fitness and stress expert, dedicated mom, studying plant-based nutrition and habit change.

She believes “replacing a habit” is a more nurturing way of the phrase “quitting a habit.” She says,

“How we are treated by others is really important. How we treat ourselves is crucial.

“We have the opportunity to be nurturing to ourselves. Making it easy for ourselves is one such way to nurture. This includes speaking of ourselves fondly and setting up the user friendliest situations. For habit change, this means using the word ‘replace’ and not ‘quit.’ It’s similar to the difference between exercising on a rocky field or exercising on a flat cushy matted floor. One is easier than the other.

“Be nice to thyself whenever possible. This will facilitate us in any habit change endeavor.”

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