Wellness Wednesdays – 4/12/17
Wellness Wednesdays is a new MVMag.net feature that curates the best health & wellness content from around the Valley and around the Web.
Subscribe for free to get it delivered straight to your inbox each week!
WELLNESS TIP OF THE WEEK
Beans, Beans, the Magical Fruit
Did you know that beans naturally contain a substance called phytic acid that makes it more difficult for your body to absorb minerals? This can result in a reduction of the iron and protein that you take in. But don’t throw those canned pintos away just yet — there are a number of ways you can remove phytic acid from your beans before eating them. Soaking the beans in hot water can drastically reduce the phytic acid content, and eating them cooked instead of raw also helps a little bit. If you can bear to trade your beans for sprouts, the latter naturally contain less phytic acid than their unsprouted counterparts, too.
HEALTH IN THE VALLEY
A Fruitful Life: Dr. Vincent Waite of the Greater Lawrence Family Health Center
by Emilie-Noelle Provost (excerpted from a full story in the March/April 2017 print issue)
When asked what made him want to become a doctor, Vincent Waite, a physician at the Greater Lawrence Family Health Center, says, “My main goal for medicine, and for life, was to work with the resource-poor in Africa.”
Waite, 65, grew up in a Roman Catholic family on New York City’s Staten Island. One of the first in his family to go to college, Waite attended the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia and SUNY Upstate Medical University in Syracuse, N.Y. He has dedicated his career to caring for the disadvantaged, initially by practicing medicine in northern Ghana, where he worked from 1983 to 1998. Once back in the U.S., Waite practiced in rural Georgia, where he worked as a primary care provider and at an HIV clinic. Since 2008, he has provided medical care for the Merrimack Valley’s homeless as a staff member at GLFHC.
According to Waite, it’s essential to treat the homeless in place, so he and his colleagues work wherever the homeless are, including at shelters like the Lowell Transitional Living Center and in soup kitchens, including Bread & Roses in Lawrence. “Their priorities are different than yours and mine,” Waite says. “Theirs is to find housing, shelter and food during the day. Health is way down on the list. Getting people to show up at clinics who may have a diagnosis of mental illness or a problem with drug abuse is nearly impossible.”
In spite of the tough conditions, the rewards Waite receives from his work are many. “I find kinship with these people,” he says. “I find individuals who have the same need for meaning in their lives as I do. I found this to be true in Africa and in other places I’ve worked, as well. I don’t have pity for them. Pity and moral outrage are nothing but compassion gone backwards.”
WELLNESS AROUND THE WEB
Thanks to “Clean Eating” Trend, Cabbage is Finally Cool
A new “clean eating” trend in the United Kingdom has people gobbling down cabbage-heavy foods like sauerkraut and kimchi, with sales of the leafy vegetable — and ingredients used to pickle it — reaching unexpected highs. Restaurants are also adding to their menus to meet demand, offering everything from kimchi-topped burgers to confit duck with a side of the pickled veggie. Richard Mobury, vice chairman at the British Brassica Association, suggests the trend is a positive one thanks to cabbage’s nutritional value: “It is very good for you in terms of vitamins and nutrition. Like kale, it is particularly high in vitamin C, vitamin K and anti-carcinogenic properties.” (via The Telegraph)
World’s Healthiest Human Hearts Found by the Amazon River
The healthiest hearts in the world belong to the Amazon Tsimane people of Bolivia, according to researchers for the Lancet medical journal. What’s keeping their blood pumping? Well, if you’re looking for some sort of miracle solution to heart health, you’re going to be disappointed — turns out the Tsimane just lead very active lifestyles, with their main forms of transportation being bikes, canoes… and their own two feet. They also fill up on a starchy diet that leads the vast majority of them to have no clogging whatsoever in their arteries: rice, plantains and corn. It helps to not have access to television! (via NBC News)