Saturday, September 26, 2009

Does Chocolate Help Migranes? Good News...

More dark chocolate benefits! Organic, gourmet dark chocolate can ease migranes...

Here's some interesting news for those of you that suffer from migranes: chocolate may be a way to keep those pains at bay! Here's more from The Modesto Bee:

"...Researchers from Missouri State University say an animal study shows that dietary supplements of cocoa might repress inflammatory responses in the brain linked to migraines.

The study was presented at the International Headache Society's 14th International Headache Congress in Philadelphia this month. Results from the study indicated that consuming a diet enriched with 10 percent cocoa increased levels of anti-inflammatory compounds in the brain, as well as repressing levels of pro-inflammatory processes.


"It appears that a cocoa-enriched diet in rats can repress the proteins that are associated with the promotion and maintenance of inflammatory responses, such as migraine," said Paul Durham of Missouri State University's Center for Biomedical & Life Sciences, an author of the study."

Read more the rest here!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

1000 Year -Old Chocolate Ritual in New Mexico!

Vitality and dark chocolate? Dark chocolate benefits abound - ask the Inhabitants of Chaco Canyon..

From Science Daily is this wonderful article about how"Inhabitants of Chaco Canyon apparently drank chocolate from cylinders like these about a thousand years ago. " Read more below about the findings from Distinguished Professor of Anthropology Patricia L. Crown and her Collaborator at the Hershey Center of Health and Nutrition W. Jeffrey Hurst.

"....Crown has long been fascinated by ceramic cylinders excavated at Pueblo Bonito in Chaco Canyon excavated in the Hyde Exploring Expedition from 1896-1899 and the National Geographic Society Expedition from 1920 to 1927. Only about 200 of the cylinders exist and most were found in a single room at the site. The cylinders are now housed at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington D.C. and at the American Museum of Natural History.

Photo: University of New Mexico

Archaeologists generally agree the vessels were used for some ritual, but there has been great disagreement about the specific use of the vessels. Crown was thinking about how the Maya drank chocolate from ceramic cylinders, and wondered whether the cylinders found at Chaco might have been used in the same way. It was clear that the Maya used the cylinders for chocolate. Experts could read the glyphs on the vessels that made it clear they were chocolate containers.
From 2004-2007 UNM graduate and undergraduate students had excavated the trash middens directly south of Pueblo Bonito and uncovered thousands of pottery fragments that could be used for analysis. Crown selected sherds that were from cylinders or pitchers. She could tell they were dated between 1000 and 1125 A.D. based on the decorative style. She selected a few sherds and worked with a graduate student to grind off the edges for testing, then sent the material to W. Jeffrey Hurst at the Hershey Center. He tested the powder using an analytical method he had developed and found the presence of theobromine, a marker for Theobroma cacao or chocolate."

Read more about these fascinating findings here.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Detox Your Body Safely & Naturally!

Ethical, organic dark chocolate nurtures the body and soul!

From is are these wonderful steps you can take to rejuvinate and detox your body....and your life! Here's more:

"...Our 12 simple steps will help you detoxify everything from your food to your feet, from your bedroom to your breasts. Purifying your life won’t happen overnight, despite what those detox foot-pad makers promise on late-night television. (PS: They don’t work!) But if you begin today you’ll definitely be a little healthier by the time you get into bed. Here’s how to get started:

1. Protect against pesticides
Washing fruit and veggies is a must-do every time you bring them home. Why? An overload of pesticides in air, food, or water may set the stage for Parkinson’s disease, breast cancer, and possibly Alzheimer’s disease decades down the road, according to research. Apparently the chemicals in pesticides—which find a home on the surface of produce—can damage the energy-producing parts of brain cells. There’s also a pesticide-and-arthritis link. Protect your brain and body by washing fruits and vegetables thoroughly, especially if you aren’t eating organic. (You don’t need to use fancy detergent; plain water should do the trick.)
Also watch out for pesticides in your own yard and garden, because anything you spray outside will likely end up in your home. Defend your greenery, instead, with insects (such as ladybugs) or a natural, safe repellent like neem oil (1 quart, $22.50).

2. It’s curtains for plastic
You know that strong odor emanating from some new plastic shower curtains and mattress covers? Blame the polyvinyl chloride (PVC) used to manufacture them—which releases toxic chemicals that can make you dizzy and drowsy with just a few deep whiffs. Retailers like Target sell curtains made with materials like cotton, polyester, or hemp, which are safer to use and easier to clean."

Read the rest f the steps you can take to live a cleaner, purer life here.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

New Evidence May Show 'Metacognition' In Some Nonhuman Animals!

Here's a fresh and fascinating new article from Science Daily! According to a new study by J. David Smith, Ph.D. at the University at Buffalo, there is growing evidence that "some animals share functional parallels with human conscious metacognition -- that is, they may share humans' ability to reflect upon, monitor or regulate their states of mind."

Here's more from Science Daily:

"....He says "comparative psychologists have studied the question of whether or not non-human animals have knowledge of their own cognitive states by testing a dolphin, pigeons, rats, monkeys and apes using perception, memory and food-concealment paradigms.

Photo: University at Buffalo

"The field offers growing evidence that some animals have functional parallels to humans' consciousness and to humans' cognitive self-awareness," he says. Among these species are dolphins and macaque monkeys (an Old World monkey species).

Smith recounts the original animal-metacognition experiment with Natua the dolphin. "When uncertain, the dolphin clearly hesitated and wavered between his two possible responses," he says, "but when certain, he swam toward his chosen response so fast that his bow wave would soak the researchers' electronic switches."

Read more about this incredible discovery here on Science Daily!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Trees Become Electric? Scientists Bring out the Spark!

From the wonderful Huffington Post is this article about an 'electrifying' (pardon the pun) new discovery! Scientists at The University of Washington have discovered that trees may be a new source of electricity! Here's more from the article:

"...In an experiment that will seem familiar to students of the potato, the scientists stuck one electrode into a bigleaf maple, and another in the ground, and saw that the tree generated a tiny stream of electricity -- a few hundred millivolts. That's not enough electricity to do much ... but run a circuit and get published in the scientific journal Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers' Transactions on Nanotechnology.

Photo: University of Washington

(As of that potato, this experiment is different, the authors said: "The tree-power phenomenon is different from the popular potato or lemon experiment, in which two different metals react with the food to create an electric potential difference that causes a current to flow." The tree experiment uses the same metal for both electrodes.)"

Read the rest here - the future looks bright!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Still in Tip-Top Shape! Richard & Louise Guy....

Dark chocolate truffles and vitality of mind keeps them sharp...

Here's a fabulous story of a spritely couple in their 90's who stay mindfully and physically active with the help of exercise, yoga, chocolate and mathematics.

Richard, who is a professor of mathematics at the University of Calgary says "You just keep moving, keep your mind and your body working all the time." Then there's his wife of 69 years, Louise, who takes in a yoga class as part of her regular weekly regimen. Louise adds, "I do my own housework, because it's such good exercise. My biggest vice is the occasional indulgence of chocolate."

It never ceases to amaze us that certain foods and physical and mental activities terns up so regularly in stories of health, longevity and happiness! Read the full article in the Calgary Herald about this inspiring couple here.

Left: Richard Guy, 92, and his
wife Louise, 90, work out Friday
at the U of C in preparation for
their climb to the top of Calgary
Tower. Photograph by: Grant Black,
Calgary Herald, Calgary Herald

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Jim Walsh to Speak at This Year's Sun Valley Spiritual Film Festival!

Jim Walsh, CEO of the organic, ethical gourmet chocolate company Intentional Chocolate "Cracks the Cosmic Egg"!

As you may know, Jim Walsh is the CEO of HESA Institute and the CEO of Intentional Chocolate.This year, he is one of the speakers at this year’s Sun Valley Spiritual Film Festival! Jim will present the short film, “Cracking the Cosmic Egg” which he describes as being "the new frontier in human energy systems where science, spirituality and nutrition all combine to provide maximum health benefits for mankind".

Here's a lovely clip providing more information about the festival:

The festival is September 18-20, 2009. Visit their website here for more wonderful sights & sounds!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Increased Longevity: Reap the Benefits of Healthy Living!

Time for a dark chocolate gourmet gift basket! Improve your vitality and longevity....

According to a recent article on BBC News' ever-fascinating website, healthy living can add 14 years to your life! We all know that consuming healthy foods and taking excersize are key elements, but let's delve a little deeper into the details, shall we? Here's more on BBC News:

"...Taking exercise, not drinking too much alcohol, eating enough fruit and vegetables and not smoking can add up to 14 years to your life, a study says. Research involving 20,000 people over a decade found those who failed on all criteria were four times more likely to have died than those who succeeded.

The findings held true regardless of how overweight or poor they were. The Public Library of Science Medicine study suggests many could increase their lifespan through simple changes. The research was carried out by the University of Cambridge and the Medical Research Council in the English county of Norfolk between 1993 and 2006. Participants were aged between 45 and 79. They were socially mixed although overwhelmingly white, and as far as they were aware at the time, did not have cancer or any heart problems."

"....A point was awarded for each of the following: not currently smoking, consuming between one and 14 units of alcohol per week (the equivalent of between half a glass and seven glasses of wine), eating five servings of fruit and vegetables each day and not being inactive.

"We've know that individually, measures such as not smoking and exercising can have an impact upon longevity, but this is the first time we have looked at them altogether," said Professor Kay-Tee Khaw, who led the research.

Read the rest of this article here. Treat yourself well - and don't forget your dark chocolate!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Inspiring! 'How Small Farmers Are Saving the World'...

Ethical organic farms are beneficial...

By Julia Moulden at Huffington post comes this wonderful article about small farmers and their siginificant contribution to making our world a better place! Here's more from

"...Tim's family were farmers in Wisconsin, where his childhood intersected with the low point in the history of family farms. While his father lost interest in the whole business and moved on, Tim was bitten. As a student and young man, he worked freelance on farms across the state, heading west to take part in the wheat harvest each fall. By the fall of 1979, when he was ready to try farming on his own, the economics had changed so dramatically that it just wasn't possible. "Money was being handed out to consolidate the industry. Family farms were dying left and right."

Over the next decade, Tim started a horse transportation company, drove truck, and did what he had to do to support his family. But the pull of farming was strong. In the early 90s, he heard about community-supported agriculture (CSA), where a community of individuals pledge support to a farm operation so that the farmland becomes the community's farm, with the growers and consumers providing mutual support and sharing the risks and benefits of food production. He knew it was time to make his move."

Read the rest of this inspiring story here, including ways that you can help!