Billies Health Connection
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Archive for the ‘Family Health’ Category


What a dilemma!  Things that have sugar in them usually tastes SO good that it is hard not to eat them, isn’t it?  For instance, we went to a new Yogurt Zone last week and had some really awesome yogurt.                                                                                                                   2010-07-06 20.06.11

All those little squares below the name, plus some you can’t see, are different flavors.  Yummy in the tummy!  Then I saw the sign that told me how good yogurt is for me, and I thought, “Great! I’ll have a BIG bowl of chocolate and vanilla swirl.”  Why not?  They said that it was GOOD for me, didn’t they?

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And since you probably can’t read it, it says:

  • can help lower bad cholesterol
  • helps to strengthen and stabilize the immune system
  • a rich source of calcium
  • may reduce the risk of high blood pressure
  • aids in overcoming skin problems & builds clear skin
  • contains active cultures that help improve the digestive system
  • may help prevent osteoporosis
  • aids in healing infections
  • excellent source of protein
  • stimulates the memory

And the picture next to it is all the goodies you can put on top of it. What they failed to mention, which I knew but ignored, is that the ingredient that makes it so delicious is SUGAR, which probably trumps the benefits of Yogurt! I have a list of 78 reasons why it is not good to eat sugar with references from medical journals & other scientific publications. I won’t bore you with all 78 or these reasons, but I will list only a few.  If anyone wants to see the whole list, e-mail me and I’ll send it to you. But here are a few:

In addition to throwing off the body’s homeostasis, excess sugar may result in a number of other significant metabolic consequences, such as:

  • can suppress the immune system
  • can cause hyperactivity, anxiety, concentration difficulties
  • can produce a significant rise in triglycerides
  • can reduce the good cholesterol (HDL) and raise the bad (LDL)
  • can play a big part in one’s getting various cancers….feeds & promotes growth of cancer cells
  • interferes with the absorption of calcium and magnesium
  • can contribute to cardiovascular disease
  • can increase the amount of fat in the liver
  • can cause headaches, including migraines as well as depression
  • can increase the risk of Alzheimers disease
  • can adversely affect the children’s school grades & behavior…..they get sugar highs and then they crash!
  • can cause arthritis and asthma
  • can cause candida (yeast infection)

After recalling all I knew about the evils of eating a lot of white stuff, like sugar, flour, rice, pasta, I sort of regretted eating such a big bowl topped with Heath bar bits, pecans, chocolate & caramel sauce. It was, however, absolutely delicious!  Unfortunately it would do no good to say, “Forgive me for I have sinned”. So I just prayed that I didn’t get close to someone who had some disease I might get with my compromised immune system!

And while we are talking about sugar, did you know that one 12 oz can of soda like Coke contains between 10 to 12 teaspoons of sugar?  Add that to all the HIDDEN sugar that is in just about everything we purchase that’s in a box or a can. Thus you eat several pounds of sugar a year.

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It’s kind of scary, so you switch to “sugar free” things and think you are A Okay.  Guess what……you are merely fooling yourself. From what I have learned from several Nutritionists, your body treats “non sugar” substitutes like it is sugar.  And Aspartane may be the worst! It can be like a hazardous chemical to your body. A long list of chronic illnesses have been linked to the use of aspartane, everything from ADHD to MS, and researchers say that it may be years before the symptoms occur. Splenda and Sweet and Low are not alot better.  The safest powdered natural sweetner you can use is Stevia.  It is a little harder to find, and different brands taste a little different, but it is well worth the effort and incredibly better for your health. You can also use Honey as a safe sweetner. And I want to be sure you understand that your body metabolizes fructose, the sweetner that is in fruits, differently than granulated sugar.

Does all this mean I have given up my Blue Bell ice cream and yogurt from Yogurt Zone and my Dove Chocolates forever?  Well, I wish I could tell you that I am that pure, but I am not. Every now and then I just have to eat that good comfort food, especially dark chocolate. Well, they say that dark chocolate is good for you, too, so I figure that 1 or 2 small pieces of Dove dark chocolates after dinner is okay. But it is a wiser choice to choose a piece of fruit when you want something sweet.  Granted, it may not be as satisfying, but I guess that’s how it goes…….

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The name of the game is probably moderation, if you can’t quit entirely! You might like to know that a food based,BALANCED B Complex with no additives or preservatives, like the Shaklee B Complex, will help curb your sweet tooth.  Really!  More about B Complex next week.  ‘Til then, enjoy those peaches and nectarines while they last.  Our Texas ones are simply delicious!

Our Furry Kids

Since most of our people kids are grown, and some with children of their own, that  makes us great grandparents. We are very proud of all of them and love them “a bushel and a peck and a hug around the neck”,which is what my daddy used to tell me!  And one of these days I’ll introduce you to them.  But today I want to introduce you to our four legged daughters, Stephie and Sophia. They were actually both MY dogs when we got them, however, my husband, Bo, is so kind and loving that he just about spoils everyone. I finally had to acknowledge that I’ll probably never have a dog of my own, because it doesn’t take long for the dogs to attach themselves to Bo.  They are his shadow.  I only get their full attention when he is gone. But then he spoils me, too, so I can fully understand.

Stephanie is a 7 year old Fox Terrier, who is definitely the Alpha Dog and she lets all the cousin and neighbor dogs that come around know it.  She used to play with them a little, but now she merely tolerates them and if they get in her space, she’s not above trying to scare them with a growl and a snap. I don’t know what Sophia thinks is going to happen to her, but she won’t even go past Stephie when she’s asleep on the bed! Sophia is more or less named after her Uncle Steve, who got her for me.  Stephanie is about as close to Steven as we could come!  The first picture is of Stephie taking a nap with her daddy when she was a baby and the next one is about a year later:

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And about 14 # later, when she forgot she was supposed to be a toy,  here she is:
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And in May of 2008, after losing our beloved Yorky, Mandy, our adorable Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Princess Sophia Grace, joined our family.  There has been a bit of sibling rivalry, you might say.  Sophie is very gentle and quite submissive, so all Stephie has to do is stand and glare at her, and Sophie hands over her treat, or her place on the sofa, or whatever Stephie wants.  An sometimes, she growls and shows her teeth and won’t let Sophie on the bed or come in from outside. Sophia is  definitely a wimp around Stephie!  I’ve had dogs all my life, and Sophie maybe be the prettiest, sweetest, most obedient, the funniest, the most loving dog I’ve ever had. And she seems to tell me exactly what she is thinking and what she wants with her beautiful brown eyes and her explicit body language.  It is rather amazing. The book I read about Cavaliers, said that they are definitely lap dogs!  Well, Sophia didn’t read that book because she is definitely NOT a lap dog, & while she adores to be loved, she won’t kiss either! Here’s what she looked like at 4 weeks old and then at 6 months:

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When Sophie was a baby, Stephanie actually played with her.  I don’t think she realized that Sophie was here to stay!
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And here she is today:

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I must bring Sophie’s boyfriend, Reilly,  who lives across the street,  into the picture.  He is an adorable Maltese who is a very “vocal” dog, to be sure.  Sophie and Reilly run miles chasing each other in circles around  the yard every day or two.  Reilly often enjoys sleep-overs when his mom and dad are out of town.  He and Sophie like to snuggle in the bed, and of course all 3 love to go anywhere in the car.  The wind in their face gives them sheer ectasy. These pictures just about tell it all.

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But my girls favorite of all things is to take a nap with their dad every day.  This is a typical afternoon at the Coburn’s for Steph and Soph:

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Now I’m not exactly sure how having and loving these adorable furry animals fits into the health picture, but I am sure they do.  They entertain us greatly and bring such joy and pleasure to us.  They are always overjoyed to see us and offer us unconditional love at all times and always forgive us if we hurt their feelings. And they make us laugh, and laughter is the best medicine of all!  So maybe that is why God has blessed all of  us with these  precious pet kids.  Oh, and they don’t give us nearly as much trouble as our children did!

Before I go, I thought you might like to see Charlie, one of my granddogs, and Dali, one of my great-granddogs when they first met Sophia at the park!

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I am just learning about all the blog ideas like Alphabet Thursdays, Wordless Wednesdays, Pink Saturdays, etc.  And I don’t know how to do those things yet.  But I’d love to have some of you post pictures of your loving pet kids. If I knew how to do this, I’d call it “Wonderful Pet Wednesday” maybe! Have a great, happy, healthy day!

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