The fact is that kidney stones are very common, and the most common kind of kidney stones are calcium oxalate stones. These form when oxalic acid and calcium bind together forming the salt, calcium oxalate. The chemical affinity of these two substances to come together is very strong.

So, it would seem to make sense to avoid oxalic acid as much as you can. However, it’s not easy to do because oxalic acid occurs widely. It’s in practically all fruits and vegetables, though in widely varying amounts. The foods with the highest content of it are spinach and chard. And of the two, you know how popular spinach is. Once they started selling it in plastic bags, pre-washed, it started flying off the shelves. It used to be that you could only buy spinach in bunches that were loaded with dirt and sand. You had to soak and rinse it 3x to get it clean. But, those days are gone, and I don’t miss them.

But, does spinach, because of its high oxalic acid content, cause kidney stones?  The answer is: not usually. I’m sure that if you took a poll of kidney stone patients in the hospital, you would find out that most kidney stone patients eat no more spinach than average and often less than average. There are people who get kidney stones who don’t eat any spinach at all.

So, how do they get them? The body generates oxalic acid as a product of its own metabolism. You might say that it's a waste product. And, the way the body breaks down Vitamin C is to convert it to oxalic acid. Think of all the people who take thousands of milligrams of Vitamin C every day. Yet, you almost never hear of them getting kidney stones.

What I’m saying is that even though there is an epidemic of kidney stones, spinach-eating has very little to do with it, and in many cases, nothing to do with it.

Then, what is going on? I think we need to look at the other side of the equation: the calcium. It takes two to tango. When people have high urinary calcium, they will tend to form calcium oxalate kidney stones. I’m saying that the thing driving it is the calcium.

Many people have high urinary calcium from eating a high protein diet, and particularly a lot of meat. It’s been known for decades that high-meat diets cause high urinary calcium.

It’s easy to test your urine for calcium. Anyone can do it. You get this reagent called Sulcowitch Reagent and add it to the urine. You shake it. Then, you see if the urine turns cloudy. If it does, it indicates high calcium. One of the components of it is oxalic acid.

So, people wind up with high urinary calcium from eating high protein diets. What about talking calcium supplements? Does that contribute to the problem? I don’t have a definitive answer, but I’ll tell you that I don’t take calcium supplements. Unless you are extremely frail with brittle bones, I don’t think it’s worth it to take them. And, the whole idea that I need 1200 or 1500 mgs. of calcium each day to keep my bone strong is nonsense. I suspect I get about 500 mgs a day from my diet, and that’s plenty. I don’t want any more. I'm too aware of how pervasive pathological calcinosis is. And my bones? Like my muscles, they’re strong.  I have no doubt that my  bones are getting all the calcium they need.

So, I really want to emphasize that with normal consumption of spinach and chard, there is nothing to worry about. I buy spinach regularly and eat it several times a week. Chard, I do not buy as often, but I buy it occasionally, and in the fall, I grow swiss chard. I eat it out of my garden from October to April. I find that it’s much easier to grow swiss chard than it is spinach, plus, it’s such a beautiful vegetable. It really brightens up the garden.

However, it would be remiss of me not to point out that there are exceptions. I heard about a woman who went on a green juice fast in which she was drinking copious amounts of spinach juice. She was also taking copious amounts of Vitamin C, and as I told you, it converts to oxalic acid. The result was that she formed so much calcium oxalate, it shut her kidneys down completely, and she had to go on dialysis.

So, at the extremes of spinach consumption, it could be dangerous. Therefore, don’t do it. Don’t make a whole salad out of spinach. Just add a few leaves. And if you include spinach in your vegetable juice cocktail, just use a little spinach.  

Note that when you steam spinach, 30 to 40% of the oxalic acid winds up in the pot liquor, which you should discard.  I eat spinach both cooked and raw. I always add cooked spinach to my pasta, and it’s delicious. It’s so delicious, they even make pasta with spinach infused in it.

So, the idea of avoiding spinach completely because of the oxalic acid, I do not find appealing at all. But, being cognizant of the potential danger, I know I need to be moderate in my spinach consumption, and I am. I have never had a kidney stone, and I have every expectation of getting through my whole life without ever having that problem. 



I am posting an open letter from a Canadian physician about his experience vaccinating his patients in the small town of Lytton, British Columbia.

On the one hand, I applaud him for voicing his concerns and honestly reporting his experience with the Covid vaccine, as a physician. However, much of what he says was known before he started vaccinating his patients. So, I would applaud him even more if he had refused to give the vaccine.  

What is he going to do going forward? Is he going to continue vaccinating people who want it, despite knowing what he does? Is he going to administer second shots to those who got the first shot? Or, is he going to tell them what he knows and what he’s seen and tell them that they will have to go elsewhere if they still want it? I hope it’s the latter, but he doesn’t say.

Despite the high rate of serious adverse effects he reports, including one fatality, I realize that there are many people who have gotten the vaccine and experienced nothing more than a sore arm for a couple days and maybe some brief flu-like symptoms. One should not assume that they are out of the woods. We need to distinguish between immediate adverse effects and long-term adverse effects. The percentage of people who are being harmed by this “vaccine” is very likely 100%. Now, here is his letter:

To Dr. Bonnie Henry, Provincial Health Officer, B.C.

re: Moderna Vaccine Reactions

Dr. Charles D. Hoffe, BSc, MB, BCh, LMCC
Lytton Medical Clinic
Lytton BC

The first dose of the Moderna vaccine has now been administered to some of my patients in the community of Lytton, BC. This began with the First Nations members of our community in mid-January, 2021. 900 doses have now been administered.

I have been quite alarmed at the high rate of serious side-effects from this novel treatment.
From this relatively small number of people vaccinated so far, we have had:

Numerous allergic reactions, with two cases of anaphylaxis.
One (presumed) vaccine induced sudden death, (in a 72 year old patient with COPD. This patient complained of being more short of breath continually after receiving the vaccine, and died very suddenly and unexpectedly on day 24, after the vaccine. He had no history of cardiovascular disease).
Three people with ongoing and disabling neurological deficits, with associated chronic pain, persisting for more than 10 weeks after their first vaccine. These neurological deficits include: continual and disabling dizziness, generalized or localized neuromuscular weakness, with or without sensory loss. The chronic pain in these patients is either generalized or regional, with or without headaches.

So in short, in our small community of Lytton, BC, we have one person dead, and three people who look as though they will be permanently disabled, following their first dose of the Moderna vaccine. The age of those affected ranges from 38 to 82 years of age.

So I have a couple of questions and comments:

Are these considered normal and acceptable long-term side effects for gene modification therapy? Judging by medical reports from around the world, our Lytton experience is not unusual.

Do you have any idea what disease processes may have been initiated, to be producing these ongoing neurological symptoms?

Do you have any suggestions as to how I should treat the vaccine-induced neurological weakness, the dizziness, the sensory loss, and the chronic pain syndromes in these people, or should they be all simply referred to a neurologist? I anticipate that many more will follow, as the vaccine is rolled out. This was only phase one, and the first dose.

In stark contrast to the deleterious effects of this vaccine in our community, we have not had to give any medical care what-so-ever, to anyone with Covid-19. So, in our limited experience, this vaccine is quite clearly more dangerous than Covid-19.

I realize that every medical therapy has a risk/benefit ratio, and that serious disease calls for serious medicine. But we now know that the recovery rate of Covid-19, is similar to the seasonal flu, in every age category.

Furthermore, it is well known that the side effects following a second shot, are significantly worse than the first. So, the worst is still to come.
It must be emphasized that these people were not sick people, being treated for some devastating disease. These were previously healthy people, who were offered an experimental therapy, with unknown long-term side-effects, to protect them against an illness that has the same mortality rate as the flu. Sadly, their lives have now been ruined.

It is normally considered a fundamental principal of medical ethics, to discontinue a clinical trial if significant harm is demonstrated from the treatment under investigation.

So my last question is this: Is it medically ethical to continue this vaccine rollout, in view of the severity of these life-altering side-effects, after just the first shot? In Lytton, BC, we have an incidence of 1 in 225 of severe life altering side effects, from this experimental gene modification therapy.

I have also noticed that these vaccine-induced side effects are going almost entirely unreported, by those responsible for the vaccine rollout. I am aware that this is often a problem, with vaccines in general, and that delayed side-effects after vaccines, are sometimes labelled as being “coincidences”, as causality is often hard to prove. However, in view of the fact that this is an experimental treatment, with no long-term safety data, I think that perhaps this issue should be addressed too.

Furthermore, I have noticed, that the provincial vaccine injury reporting form, which was clearly designed for conventional vaccines, does not even have any place to report vaccine injuries of the nature and severity that we are seeing from this new mRNA therapy.

It is now clearly apparent with medical evidence from around the world, that the side effect profiles of the various gene modification therapies against Covid-19, have been vastly understated by their manufacturers, who were eager to prove their safety.

Thank you for attention to this critically urgent public health matter.

Yours sincerely,

Dr. Charles Hoffe



It was recently reported that when cardiologists met in Washington DC for a long conference- so they were away from their practices, not treating people- that the fatality rate for heart disease fell. And it’s not the first time that’s happened. And it’s happened in other countries besides the U.S., including Israel.

The explanation goes that that the reduction in elective cardiac procedures, which can be fatal, saved lives. But, my take on it is that just about everything that cardiologists do is detrimental, and the world would be better off without them. Seriously.

Now, I realize that it would mean that some individuals would die from lack of care. But, what I’m saying is that a much greater number of people would live from a lack of care; that they kill more than they save.

So, let’s look at Cardiology in the aggregate. First, there is all the cholesterol treating, where they are drugging people just for having a high cholesterol number, and for no other reason, that is, for no other sign of heart disease except a high cholesterol number. Cholesterol is a vital substance with a broad array of functions, and you can’t possibly live without it. The idea that there is anything inherently toxic about having more cholesterol in your blood is ridiculous. But, let’s look at it mathematically. If your total cholesterol is say 210, you’re likely to be put on a statin. If it’s 160, you’re likely to be told that it’s about right. Why should a 25% reduction of the level of cholesterol in your blood make any difference to whether or not plaquing is going on in your arteries? If there is enough cholesterol in your blood to promote plaquing at 210, I guarantee you there’s enough there to promote plaquing at 160. Plaquing is a pathological process that involves inflammation and a lot more cholesterol. The idea that the quantitative level of cholesterol in the blood is what’s driving the pathogenicity is ridiculous. And the statin drugs that they use for it are very harmful. They promote diabetes and dementia, among other things. All this is malpractice on a massive scale.

What about coronary bypass operations? On angiogram, they see a complete blockage in one or more coronary arteries, so immediately they want to get the person under the knife. But wait! If the person is sitting there and not keeling over, and often not even having chest pain, then obviously, the body has found a way to get blood to that part of the heart. It’s called collateral circulation involving small vessels that don’t show up on an angiogram.

The coronary bypass operation is a Frankensteinian procedure where they split your chest open, stop your heart and lungs, where your blood is circulated through a heart/lung machine while the surgeon is operating. However, the lining of the heart/lung machine can’t prevent blood clots as well as the endothelium, and as a result little clots form, a lot of them, which go on to give you strokes.

Put it this way: I would never submit to that operation no matter what was going on with me and no matter what they told me. I would flip them the bird and walk out

Just recently we learned that elective stenting that is done to open blood vessels is a complete waste, that the death rate is as high or higher in those who get stented than in those who don’t get stented. Those who had sham operations did no worse than those who got the real thing.

What about arrhythmias? There are NO good arrhythmia drugs. You are better off living with your arrhythmia than taking any of them. A very common arrhythmia is atrial fibrillation, and that they usually treat with powerful blood thinners. But, keep in mind that it’s just a prophylactic thing. The way the blood swirls when you have a-fib increases the risk of clot formation, which is why they prescribe these blood thinners. However, plenty of people live with a-fib for years without taking blood thinners and without suffering; without having any catastrophes.

I don’t have a-fib, and hopefully, I never will. But, if I did have it, I certainly wouldn’t take any prescription blood thinners. I might take a baby aspirin. I’d be open to that; but nothing stronger. And obviously, I don’t need a doctor to get that. I can just buy it at Walmart for $6. And of course, I would eat a healthy plant-based diet: fruits, vegetables, greens, nuts, beans.  That’s it. The rest of their drugs they can shove.

What about treating high blood pressure? Well, it depends on how high it is. If it’s just say 20 points high, say in the 140s systolic, you don’t need to treat that with drugs. That should be a wake-up call to start living right, with your diet, exercise, weight control, ditching bad habits, etc. The only time to even consider taking drugs for blood pressure is if it is dangerously high, where it’s obvious that the symptomatic person is on the verge of a stroke. That’s just a tiny percentage of the people with hypertension. Most of them can access the lifestyle approach, and it will be much better for them than starting drugs. I’m talking about the middle-aged person for whom hypertension is diagnosed at a routine checkup, where there is no emergency, nothing dire going on, and perhaps nothing at all going on, and yet, the doctor starts the person on anti-hypertensive drugs with the intention of keeping them on them for the rest of their life. I cannot adequately express my outrage at that kind of medical practice.

So, Cardiologists! Take lots of vacations. Retire early. Take up golf. The less you have to do with people the better. Whether you know it or not, you’re a menace. I can live without your miracles. I can live a hell of a lot better with them.


It was announced today that 89 vaccinated people in Minnesota came down with Covid. Right away, of course, damage control set in, and the excuses were hurled. So far, one  them have died, but some are in the hospital.

Now, keep in mind that this is among people who were “fully” vaccinated. What that means is that they received both doses of the vaccine, and two weeks had passed after the second one, to give the body time to make antibodies.

The state director of infectious diseases,  Kris Ehresmann, said that since the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are 95% effective, we should expect to see about 5 cases among every 100 people who are fully vaccinated.  Here is exactly what she said:

"Remember, a 95% effective vaccine still means we could expect to see infections in around 5 of every 100 people who get the vaccine."

But wait! That is ridiculous! It’s ridiculous because it assumes that all 100 people were destined to get Covid. But, that’s not true.

According to the CDC, the latest percent positive rate, which is for last week, was 4.2%. So, that means that out of 100 random people, right around 4 would test positive for Covid. And even before there was any vaccine, the typical percent positive rate was around 5 percent.

In Minnesota, the positivity rate was only 3.5% a month ago, and it has jumped to 4.6%, despite a month of vaccinating.  

Remember: the vast majority of people don’t get Covid- even without a vaccine.

So, if 5 out of every 100 vaccinated people get Covid, that means that it isn’t protecting at all.

A state epidemiologist tried to put the blame on a variant. “A more infectious viral variant known as B.1.1.7 is widespread in Minnesota, threatening to undermine the state's vaccination progress,” said Dr. Ruth Lynfield, state epidemiologist. "At this point, it is a race to vaccinate more people vs. the growth of variant cases."

But, there are many variants, and who is to say that there won’t be more? Do you know about the arcade game Whac-A-Mole? That’s what they’re playing.

Covid hospitalizations have also increased in Minnesota over the last month, despite the vaccination campaign.

We are in the Bizarro World. The Freak Bizarro World. The testing is bogus. The vaccinating is bogus. It is doing nothing but harm. The diagnosing is bogus. They are attributing anything and everything to Covid- a respiratory virus- so long as there’s a positive test result.

This is lunacy. Heaven help us.







Deaths associated with getting the Covid vaccine are being reported to the CDC hotline. I don’t know how many dozen there are so far, but the number is growing. Of course, the CDC has not conceded to any vaccine-caused deaths. They point out that people die every day, and if a person dies after getting the shot, perhaps they were going to die anyway.

Two of those people who died are famous black Americans: Hammering Hank Aaron and Marvelous Marvin Hagler. The media is denying, profusely, that the vaccine was involved in their deaths. However, Aaron got the vaccine in a public spectacle that was intended to persuade black Americans to get it. And he seemed fine at the time. And all they are saying about his death is that it was due to “natural causes.” Well, what were the causes?

More recent is the death of Marvin Hagler. They are denying that the vaccine caused his death, but they are not denying that he got the vaccine. Obviously, he either got it, or he didn’t, and if he didn’t get it, they would say. But, they are not saying, and to me, that is tantamount to admitting that he got it.

There are numerous cases like the one below: a young mother who was seemingly in good health, who got acutely ill right after the 2nd dose of the Moderna vaccine. Then her liver failed, and then she died. Read it yourself, and then try to imagine the CDC denying that her death was vaccine-related.


An autopsy has been ordered after a Utah mom died just four days after receiving the second dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine.

Kassidi Kurill, mother of one, got the vaccine due to her work as a surgical technician for several plastic surgeons.

According to Kurill’s father, her arm was sore after the first shot and she experienced no other side effects, but it was when she received her second dose things went wrong.

Kurill landed in the ER, where “she was very, very sick, and her liver was not functioning.”

 Kurill was transported to a trauma center in Murray where she was reportedly to receive a liver transplant.

She died 30 hours after arriving at the hospital.

An autopsy could identify a cause of death, but the family was unaware of any pre-existing health conditions.

So, what shall we assume in her case? That it’s just a coincidence that this young mother went into liver failure right after getting the second dose of the vaccine?  


I don’t see how these tragic calamities aren't concerning. It’s one thing to say that a temporal association with a vaccine is no guarantee that the vaccine caused the death. But, don’t equate that with a guarantee that the vaccine didn’t cause the death. And in the case of this young mother, it looks EXTREMELY likely that the vaccine caused it because she was young, and there was nothing else wrong with her, that we know of.

We know that in 1976, they called off the Swine Flu Vaccination Campaign because of adverse events, including some deaths.

So, the question is: how many suspicious deaths will it take for them to call off the Covid Vaccination Campaign?

And consider that, so far, it's been mostly older people who have been the ones getting it. And older people are subject to dying. They can have heart attacks, strokes, embolisms; they can get fatal pneumonias, etc. So, when someone as old as Hank Aaron (86) dies, it’s easy to attribute it to his age. After all: the average lifespan for American males is only 77. But, what if when people in their 20s, 30s, and 40s, get vaccinated in droves, and the death rate among them is just as high or nearly as high? What are they going to say then? And what are they going to do then?

But, so far, they haven’t even conceded that the young mother with no pre-existing health conditions died from the vaccine.

So, the bottom line for me is that I don’t think they are going to call it off unless young people are dying by the thousands. Even if it's many hundreds, they won't stop.  Instead, they'll make excuses.  

 And I think it is a big mistake to assume that those who get the vaccine and experience only minimal side effects, or even none, are not being harmed.  

I’ll have more to say about this, but I would sooner leave this country than get the vaccine. And I am not saying that rhetorically. I mean that I would never submit to it, and if they tried to force it on me, I would fight with every ounce of my strength.



I’d like to talk about the two most common age-related eye disorders: macular degeneration and cataracts. But first, I’ll point out that there are myriad eye problems, and some of them are medical emergencies. For instance: detached retina and acute closed-angle glaucoma. You need to see a good ophthalmologist right away in those cases. But, there’s a good chance you’ll go your whole life without either one of those things happening to you.

However, cataracts are universal. If you live long enough, you are going to get them. Ultraviolet light damages the proteins in the lens. It denatures them such that they lose their translucence and become opaque. But, people vary a lot in how rapidly they develop cataracts.

I am 70, and I have been told that I have some mild opacity in my lens. I’m not aware of any visual deficit. And the eye doctor wasn’t concerned.  He said it’s a long way from having to consider surgery. In fact, he said I’m doing better than most 70 year olds he’s seen. I expect it to get worse, but I hope very slowly, so that it’s many years before it becomes a problem.

Now, I don’t want to get cataract surgery. I am not going to do it unless I absolutely have to. For instance, if my cataracts were bad enough to make me feel unsafe to drive at night, but I had no problem driving during the day, I would just not drive at night. I don’t like driving at night anyway. So, if that was the only interference, I just wouldn’t drive at night at all. And if I had to get somewhere at night, I would just Uber there. I could live like that forever. I could do it right now. Of course, if it got to the point that I couldn’t even drive during the day, then I’d have to have surgery. But, I’m no pessimist. I won’t assume the worst. I think it would be cool to get to my 90s with my original lenses, and if not driving at night was the only inconvenience, hallelujah.  But, here is what am I doing to try to prevent or forestall cataracts. First, I eat a high produce diet with lots of colorful fruits and vegetables to get those protective antioxidants. And second, I take 500 mg  Carnosine twice a day. There is good, solid research showing that Carnosine helps prevent cataracts. There are also Carnosine eye-drops sold under the name Can-C.  We don’t sell Can-C drops, but we do offer Carnosine capsules  But, the drops are widely available online. I haven’t felt motivated to start using the drops yet because I’m not having any problem. But, if my cataracts worsened, and the eye doctor told me that I was getting close to needing surgery, I would use them. And I assume that eventually it is going to come to that. So, I figure it’s in my future. But, I am going to put off cataract surgery as long as I can. I know that it oftren goes without a hitch, but I’ve heard horror stories about cataract surgery.  I have a good friend, a retired professor, about my age, and he underwent cataract surgery that went horribly bad. It had to be repeated. And even now, years later, he sends me email in super-large font, and I write back to him the same way since he can't see very well.  I know it's the exception, but still: we're talking about cutting into your eyes.  So, I am only going to do it as a last resort, and I hope I never have to do it at all.

I should point out that I do wear protective eyewear, either sunglasses or regular eyeglasses that become sunglasses outdoors.

Now, macular degeneration is an entirely different story. Unlike cataracts, it is NOT inevitable. My maculas are in excellent shape. My eye doctor, who is a good friend of mine, Dr. David Peters, of Lockhart, Texas, tells me I don’t have the slightest hint of macular degeneration. He says my maculas are so yellow, I’ll probably never get it. And I do consume a lot of lutein. Today, for instance, I hate mango, papaya, kale, swiss chard, and romaine lettuce. And I ate other foods that probably have a little bit of lutein too, such as grapefruit. Macula degeneration is said to be due to a deficiency of lutein, but there is probably more to it than that. There is probably a circulatory component as well. But naturally, I’m doing all I can to protect my arteries as well.

But, I want to make it clear that if a person does have macular degeneration, I think they should have the laser treatment for it because it does help, and it may even keep you from going blind. There are a lot of bad things they do in Medicine, but that is one of the good things. 


So, the score for me, so far, is: no sign of macular degeneration, while mild cataracts are forming, but it’s far from being problematic. I have no sign of glaucoma. My intraocular pressure is low. And I don’t have any floaters.

So, I am satisfied with how it’s going for me visually. And again, my hope and my goal is to go my whole life without needing any drastic interventions for my eyes. But, if I wound up having to get cataract surgery but not until my 90s, I’ll consider that a success too.  


Carotenoids are pigments, produced by plants, that occur as yellow, red, and orange. They serve as sunscreens to the plant, preventing ultra-violet damage, and they do that for us too when we consume them. And they provide other protective effects. But, are they essential nutrients? The answer is: yes and no.

Lutein, which is yellow, certainly is an essential nutrient. Without it, the retinal macula (which literally means yellow spot) would succumb to ultraviolet damage very quickly. So, if vision matters to you, you need lutein. And lutein does good things in your arteries and elsewhere too. But, it’s in your eyes that it’s really crucial. There is another yellow carotenoid that goes along with it, zeaxanthin. But from this point on, I’ll just refer to lutein, though I mean both. 

Lutein occurs in yellow fruits and vegetables, but, it is just as abundant in green leafy vegetables. You don’t see it in the green leaf because the chlorophyll covers it up. But, when the green leaves die in the fall, the chlorophyll breaks down rapidly, exposing the other pigments that were there all along, hence: fall colors.

So, how did people get lutein in ancient times? And remember: they didn’t know they needed it. They got it from whatever green and yellow vegetables they ate and yellow fruits.  As far as animal foods go, the yolk of an egg has lutein, and there is also some in milk which gets concentrated in butter if the cows are grass-fed. Of course, I’m not recommending those foods. But, just knowing that lutein occurs in green leaves, which grow practically everywhere, makes me realize that humans have always had access to lutein.  

But, what about the red carotenoid lycopene? It’s not nearly as well distributed as lutein. It occurs in red foods, but not all red foods are red from lycopene. For instance, strawberries and cherries aren’t red from lycopene. And there are very small amounts of lycopene in non-red foods. For instance, asparagus has a little bit of lycopene, but it isn’t much.

So, the modern and widely available foods with the highest lycopene content are tomatoes, watermelon, and red grapefruit. Reddish varieties of papaya have it too, but it depends how red they are. Red guavas actually have the most, but I don’t consider them to be widely available, do you? It’s not like you can go into any supermarket and find red guavas.  Red cabbage has a little bit of lycopene, but not much, despite being red.

The point is that when you compare the availability of lutein and lycopene, there is no comparison. Lutein is much more widely distributed.

But, let’s go back to those main food sources of lycopene in the modern diet: tomatoes, watermelon, and red grapefruit.

Ruby red grapefruit was developed at Texas A&M University for commercial production in Texas in 1929. Some pink varieties came earlier, but not much earlier. The white grapefruit goes back to the 19th century, but it doesn’t have lycopene.

Watermelon is native to Africa, and it as been grown for 5000 years. But, the original watermelon had no lycopene at all. It had pale green flesh and was immensely bitter. Selective breeding created the watermelon we know of today. So, for most of human existence, watermelon was not a source of lycopene.

Tomatoes are natïve to Southern Mexico and Western South America, essentially the Aztec lands. They weren’t red at first either, and they didn’t begin to spread outside of that area until after Columbus.

So, there were probably billions of people who lived their whole lives with little or no lycopene. And that tells me that lycopene is not an essential nutrient. Lutein is, but lycopene isn’t. It doesn’t mean it’s not useful and beneficial, but it isn’t essential. There is no distinct deficiency disease resulting from not getting lycopene.

But, don’t get me wrong: I am a big fan of lycopene, and I make a point of eating it. I eat watermelon all year long; partly because I like it; but also because I know about the lycopene.  Or course, I eat tomatoes all year long too. And I eat Texas Ruby Red grapefruit for as long as they are in season, which is from October to April. I have all three of those foods in my house right now, and it’s not uncommon for me to ingest all three on a single day. I did today.

The effect that lycopene has on the prostate is what appeals to me the most. There is a ton of research showing that lycopene lowers the risk of prostate cancer.  It lowers the absolute risk of it, and it also lowers the risk of developing aggressive prostate cancer. That is significant because the non-aggressive form of prostate cancer is not very problematic at all. Millions of men get it without even knowing it. It never causes them any problem or any symptom. And treating it aggressively is probably more beneficial to the health of the medical industry than it is to the men. 

I’m 70, and the only thing that would cause me to consider having anything done to my prostate is if I couldn’t urinate. Obviously, I would have to do something then. But, as long as I can urinate freely and I’m not in pain, I am not messing with my prostate, and you have my word about that. 

Am I saying that treating prostate cancer is a racket? Yes, that’s what I’m saying. But, it’s not entirely the fault of doctors. Some men freak out if they’re told that they have some cancer cells in their prostate. Me, I wouldn’t freak out. Of course, no one has ever told me that. But, hypothetically, if someone did, I would not freak out. They say that 80 to 90 percent of men are going to get some cancer cells in their prostate before they die- if they live long enough. So, why should I freak out about it?

But naturally, I’d rather not get prostate cancer, and loading up on lycopene foods is something I do proactively to prevent it.

Just think: here we are in 2021, and there are people who deliberately avoid eating plant foods.  They shun them. There are even doctors who are doing that. It's incredible. How could anybody be that stupid? 

I haven’t mentioned beta-carotene yet, which is the other major carotenoid, and it, of course, is orange. Like lutein, it is widely distributed in plants. Is it essential? If you rely on it for Vitamin A it is. Remember that pre-formed Vitamin A does not occur in plants. But, even if you eat animal foods that have pre-formed Vitamin A, such as cod liver, it would still be beneficial to get some beta-carotene. Fortunately, it is very easy to do.

But, what a fascinating thing that these pigments which make plants colorable and attractive and protect them from oxidative damage, including ultraviolet damage, do the same thing for us. Eat the rainbow diet, meaning, lots of colorful fruits and vegetables. That’s some solid advice. I recommend it, and I do it.



I thought I’d share some practices of mine in the kitchen that may help you.

I’ve mentioned that the quality of melons has gone down. It’s rare that you find a luscious cantaloupe, and the luscious honeydew melons of old are gone completely. Watermelons have held up better, but they still fluctuate in quality. I consider myself good at picking them, but it’s never a sure thing. So, if I wind up with a lackluster watermelon (meaning not very sweet) what I do is chill it and then blend it into a drink. I just blend it in the blender, which has the effect of sweetening it because the sugar gets released and more available to your taste buds. It’s very satisfying that way. If you tried it with a sweet watermelon, it would be too sweet. But, if it’s subpar for regular eating, then this blending trick really does the trick.

Plant-based milks are very popular. It started with soy milk, but it seems like, today, almond milk is the most popular one.  But, I find store-bought almond milk watery, so I make my own. And I use three kinds of nuts in equal proportion: almonds, pecans, and walnuts. I blend them in water using a blender cup. A blender cup is this little cup. I think its capacity is 8 ounces. But, it takes the blade and screw-on top of a blender basin. The contents need to be under pressure to force the nuts into the blade. If you tried it with a big blender receptacle, the nuts would just bounce around.  So, the secret is to put 2 or 3 ounces of nuts and then fill the cup up with cold drinking water, and then blend at high speed until thoroughly liquefied, and it doesn’t take long; maybe 5 seconds. It’s fast! And you get a very nice smooth milk that you can pour over oatmeal or whole grain cereal. And if you don’t use it up at once, you can crew the cap on and put it in the fridge. It will store for a few days without deteriorating.

Dark leafy greens like kale are really good for you, and here’s a fast way to prepare them. I’m eating kale from my garden right now (although I picked all that I had before this deep freeze hit Texas). But, when I don’t have garden kale, I buy it at the supermarket, and it comes pre-cut and pre-washed, organic. And it’s not expensive either. $3 for a big bag? That’s cheap.

So, I take a couple handfuls of kale and steam it until it’s tender but still green. Then I dribble some extra virgin olive oil over it and then sprinkle it liberally with garlic powder. I particularly like the garlic powder they sell at Whole Foods. And that is really tasty. It doesn’t need any salt either.

The best way I know of to eat sweet potatoes is to mix avocado with them. Of course, you should let them cool a little first because you don’t want to melt the avocado. But, it really is delicious when they are good sweet potatoes and good avocadoes.

I make smoothies sometimes with bananas and another fruit, such as berries of some kind or pineapple or even nice ripe pears. Then, I add silken tofu and hempseed hearts.  It makes a very delicious, dairy-less, vegan smoothie.

Besides making nut milk, I also make nut butter using the Champion juicer. I use the same combination of nuts: almonds, pecans, and walnuts. I just run them through the machine. I don’t add anything. One way that I use it is oatmeal. I mash the nut butter with ripe banana and then mix it into the oatmeal. My guests love it.

I hope you know that beans are a very good food. I buy low sodium canned beans, including pinto beans. But, if I’m going to cook them from scratch, I prefer to use the Anasazi beans, which are similar to pinto, but with a sweeter, richer flavor. They don’t sell them in supermarkets, but you may be able to find them at Whole Foods, and if not, you can order them online. They really are tasty.

I hope these tips have been helpful.

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