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THE GOOD AND BAD SIDE OF SUGAR

THE GOOD & BAD SIDE OF SUGAR 

"Those who fail to take the time to be healthy will ultimately have to take the time to be sick." ~ Dr. James Chappell 

BEWARE OF SUGAR 

There's the old saying that sugar is poison. After reading Lick the Sugar Habit by Nancy Appleton (PhD), you'll be convinced of that. Most people in the world each consume more than 50 – 80 kilos of sugar and related sweeteners each year. Before you doubt it, consider that there are about 17 teaspoons of sugar in a single can of Coke. Author Nancy Appleton (PhD) delineates how over-consumption of sugar wreaks havoc with the immune and endocrine systems, leading to chronic conditions including arthritis, osteoporosis, diabetes, asthma, and hypoglycemia, along with the usual suspects such as cavities and periodontal disease. Appleton admits that she herself used to be a sugar addict, preferring to take her sweets in the form of chocolate, and consequently suffered from numerous allergies, plus bronchitis, pneumonia, and even a chest tumor that turned out to be a huge calcium deposit that resulted from her body's inability to process the pounds of sugar she consumed. In addition to throwing off the body's homeostasis, excess sugar may result in a number of other significant consequences. 

WHAT IS SUGAR? 

The term sugar has been used over time as a loose referral to refined or processed sugars available in different forms – cubes, granules, liquids. Scientifically, however, sugar is a generalized name for sweet soluble carbohydrates consisting of linked carbon, hydrogen and oxygen atoms, the most common of which are glucose, fructose, sucrose and lactose. Sugars are primarily ingested in the form of carbohydrates which as we know are primary sources of energy in diets. But what is it that makes these sugars able to act as a sustaining energy source? The answer is glucose. Glucose on its own is a simple sugar; after we digest various carbohydrates, glucose is the end product which is converted by the body to provide energy. The importance of glucose can neither be overlooked nor overemphasized. As a primary energy source, glucose is required to keep your body active, healthy and energized. The brain most importantly is the largest consumer of glucose as 75% of glucose generated from carbohydrates (and indeed other substances) is used by the brain. Sugar (glucose) is brain food; it is the fundamental fuel needed by the brain. If you have ever experienced a bout of dizziness after skipping a few meals, watch it; most likely your brain has used up its store of glucose. Another goodie about sugar: it aids in the healing of wounds; sugar dries the wound, thus preventing the growth of bacteria.  Other classes of food also act as sources of glucose. For example, proteins and fats can be converted to glucose in cases where carbohydrate consumption is too low to replenish glucose stores. The conversion process is known as “gluconeogenesis” and it accounts for phenomena such as weight loss or muscle wasting in malnourished children who are unable to include carbohydrates in their diets. Muscle begins to break down and fat in the adipose tissues is converted to glucose to provide energy. It is thus difficult to overlook how important glucose is. 

There are various types of sugars which are widely consumed.  Refined sugars (sucrose sugars) are the most common sweetening agents used on a daily basis. They are processed sugars which undergo several stages of processing to give cubes, granules, syrups and so on.  Their metabolic by-product is glucose and thus they provide the same benefits as naturally occurring glucose but have several potential side effects and dangers associated with them. Better then to consume sugar from natural foods than to load your pap, tea, oats, cornflakes, etc with refined sugar or senselessly drink soft drinks laden with sugar. No matter your age, watch what you do with these sugars, but especially if you have crossed forty. Fruit sugars are obtained from fruits as the name implies. Fruits are known to be good and healthy sources of glucose since eating fruits helps to improve one's health and immunity. Therefore, eating fruits is advisable especially to reduce refined sugar intake. Sugar substitutes are chemicals which were developed as alternatives to processed sugars. Sugar substitutes pose less risk for patients with diabetes; some of them occur naturally but are less sweet than sucrose. Examples are xylitol, aspartame and sorbitol.  Xylitol, for instance, is an all-natural sweetener.  It is not only a safe, natural sweetener without the bad side effects of sugar and artificial substitutes, it's also good for your teeth, stabilises insulin and hormone levels and promotes good health. It is wise to check each substitute for negative effects before using.

"GOODS" AND "BADS" OF SUGAR

Now that we know the different and most popularly consumed forms of sugar, let us look a little closer at the health side. Sugar
can have many positive effects on metabolism and life. These effects include: 
  • Sugars have a high calorie content that instantly provide energy when needed. They give us the required boost to carry out daily tasks without wearing out. 
  • Sugars have a by-product called glycolic acid which helps in the maintenance of healthy looking skin. The glycolic acid helps to eliminate blemishes and restore the balance in the skin's oils.  
  • For sugars that are obtained naturally, there are certain minerals which are passed to them from their natural sources. Elements like phosphorus, iron, calcium, and potassium are carried along in the glucose structure when natural sources of glucose are consumed.  
  • Sugars act as a quick source of glucose in patients that are severely hypoglycaemic. Sugar cubes are given to diabetic patients who tend to become hypoglycaemic after taking their medication without subsequently consuming food. The sugar instantly causes a surge in glucose levels and insulin levels increase, causing the glucose to be moved into the cells where it is required to defeat the effects of hypoglycaemia.
  • Sugars also come with negative effects for which reasons many people avoid sugar consumption. Dr Fredric Brandt, popularly known as 'The Baron of Botox' has said, "In a nutshell, sugar hastens the degradation of elastin and collagen, both key skin proteins. In other words, it actively ages you." He believes that by simply reducing your sugar intake, you can turn back the clock by ten years and improve the texture, tone and radiance of your skin. 
Some of sugar's negative effects are:

  • Sugars provide just pure energy and do not contain any other essential nutrients. When people eat up to 10 to 20% of calories as sugar, this generally causes major problems and contributes to deficiency of other nutrients.
  • Processed sugar are bad for the teeth and general oral hygiene. Because sugars are easy to digest, bacteria in the mouth digest the sugars and produce gases which cause tooth decay and bad breath, both of which are undesirable. 
  • Sugars that are not naturally occurring, when consumed in large amounts, cause the liver to be overloaded with fructose. This excess fructose is converted to fat which leads to fatty liver and other serious health related problems. Of course, fruits are high in fructose but the amount of fructose in fruits can never be enough to overload the liver as processed sugars do. 
  • Sugars can cause cells to be insulin-resistant. Insulin is an important hormone in the body. Its job is to permit the entry of glucose into the cells for the provision of energy, as well as instructing the cells to start burning glucose instead of fat. Consumption of too much sugar causes insulin to fail in its responsibility to move glucose into the cells (insulin resistance) and this phenomenon is responsible for many diseases including obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular diseases such as stroke.  
  • Because sugars cause insulin levels to become elevated, many scientists have implicated high sugar consumption in cancer. Cancer is one of the leading causes of death worldwide and is characterised by growth and multiplication of cells at an uncontrolled rate. Insulin is an important hormone in the regulation of cells growth and as a result it is believed that an increase in insulin can contribute to cancer.
In conclusion, the effects of sugar on our bodies depend on the nature of the sugars we consume, the amount we take in daily and our physical fitness which will enable us to burn the sugar. To maintain a healthy body, we must endeavour to consume sugar in moderation and have daily exercise routines to keep fit and avoid the problems which are associated with sugar. [GB/Nkiru Ibeanu]

REFERENCES: 

  1. AUTHORITY NUTRITION:
  • https://authoritynutrition.com/10-disturbing-reasons-why-sugar-isbad/
  • http://www.onegreenplanet.org/vegan-food/sugar-and-your-health-thegood-the-bad-and-the-ugly/
      2. SUGAR HISTORY:
  • http://www.sugarhistory.net/sugarfacts/health-benefits-of-sugar/ 
      3. Sweet by Nature: See www.sugar.org/

SOURCE: GLOBAL BULLETIN - Published monthly by Munnad Interfirm Consultants: EAST: 23, University Road, Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria. NORTH CENTRAL: 8, Low Cost Road, G.R.A, Akwanga, Nasarawa State, Nigeria. GSM: 07032095995; 08111589509. E-mail: munnadglobalbulletin@gmail.com, amunnadi@yahoo.com, amunnadi@gmail.com

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THE CRIME OF MONEY LAUNDERING

THE CRIME OF MONEY LAUNDERING


Money laundering is the practice of disguising the origins of illegally obtained money. That is, it is the process of creating the appearance that large amounts of money obtained from serious crimes, such as drug trafficking or terrorist activity, originated from a legitimate source. In the past, the term was applied only to financial transactions related to organized crime. Today its
definition is expanded by government and international regulators to mean any financial transaction which generates an asset
or a value as the result of an illegal act, which may involve actions such as tax evasion or false accounting. In the UK, it does not even need to involve money, but any economic good. Money laundering is in itself a tool to catch other crimes – whether it be drug trafficking, human trafficking, or illegal arms sales. It covers money laundering committed by private individuals, drug dealers, businesses, corrupt officials, members of criminal organizations such as the Mafia, and even states. The rationale for criminalizing the offence is that it is wrong for individuals and organisations to assist criminals to benefit from the proceeds of their criminal activity or to facilitate the commission of such crimes by providing financial services to them.

THE CRIME PROCESS

There are three steps involved in the process of laundering money: placement, layering, and integration.  Placement refers to the act of introducing "dirty money" (money obtained through illegitimate, criminal means) into the financial system in some way; "layering" is the act of concealing the source of that money by way of a series of complex transactions and bookkeeping gymnastics (the money is 'washed' and its ownership and source is disguised); and integration refers to the act of acquiring that money in purportedly legitimate means (that is, the 'laundered' money is reintroduced into the legitimate economy). One of the more common ways that laundering takes place is  when a criminal organization funnels their illegally obtained cash through
a normal cash-based business e.g. channeling sales from illicit drugs through a series of car-wash businesses. They may use the money earned from illegal activities to buy things (like gold and silver, shares or casino chips, and then selling those items to get the money back. If a criminal buys and sells things many times it is hard for the police to find out where the criminal got the
money. They hide their actions through a series of steps that make it look like the money was earned legitimately.

Other common forms of money laundering include smurfing, where a person breaks up large chunks of cash and deposits them over an extended period of time in a financial institution, or simply smuggles large amounts of cash across borders to deposit them in offshore accounts where money laundering enforcement is less strict. A smurf is a colloquial term for a money launderer, or one who seeks to evade scrutiny from government agencies by breaking up a transaction involving a large amount of money
into smaller transactions below the reporting threshold. A smurf deposits illegally gained money into bank accounts for transfer in the near future. Therefore, a criminal group with $50,000 in cash for laundering may use several smurfs for depositing anywhere from $5,000 to $9,000 in a number of accounts geographically dispersed.

GLOBAL WAR AGAINST MONEY LAUNDERING

As financial crime has become more complex, so "Financial Intelligence" has become more recognized in combating international
crime and terrorism. Anti-money laundering (AML) refers to a set of procedures, laws or regulations designed to stop the practice of generating income through illegal actions. Though AML laws cover only a relatively limited number of transactions and criminal behaviours, their implications are extremely far reaching. For example, AML regulations require institutions issuing credit or allowing customers open accounts to complete due-diligence procedures to ensure that these institutions are not aiding in money laundering activities. The onus to perform these procedures is on the institutions, not on the criminals or the government.  AML laws and regulations target activities that include market manipulation, trade of illegal goods, corruption of public funds and evasion of tax, as well as all activities that aim to conceal these deeds. Financial institutions are expected to comply with AML laws, make sure that clients are aware of these laws and guide them.  Although the act of money laundering itself is a victimless white-collar crime, it is often connected to serious and sometimes violent crime. Being able to stop money laundering is, in effect, being able to stop the cash flows of international organized crime. In 1989, the G-7 countries formed an international committee called the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) in an attempt to fight money laundering on an international scale. It is headquartered in Paris. 

The FATF is an intergovernmental organization that designs and promotes policies and standards to combat money laundering.
Recommendations created by the FATF target money laundering, terrorist financing, and other threats to the global financial system. In the beginning of the 2000's it was expanded to combating the financing of terrorism. Since 9/11, anti money
laundering and combating terrorism financing have become intertwined. International terrorism is a serious problem which has a strong money laundering component, hence the additional international scrutiny.

The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, FinCEN, is a network administered by the United States Department of the Treasury whose goal it is to prevent and punish criminals and criminal networks that participate in money laundering. FinCEN operates
domestically and internationally, and it consists of three major players: law enforcement agencies, the regulatory community and the financial-services community. By researching mandatory disclosures imposed on financial institutions, FinCEN tracks suspicious persons, their assets and their activities to make sure that money laundering is not occurring. FinCEN tracks
everything from very complicated electronically based transactions to simple smuggling operations that involve cash. As money laundering is such a complicated crime, FinCEN seeks to fight it by bringing different parties together. The United Nations and
the World Bank also maintain processes against money laundering.


SOURCE: Global Bulletin. Published monthly by Munnad Interfirm Consultants: EAST: 23, University Road, Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria. NORTH CENTRAL: 8, Low Cost Road, G.R.A, Akwanga, Nasarawa State, Nigeria. GSM: 07032095995; 08111589509. E-mail: munnadglobalbulletin@gmail.com, amunnadi@yahoo.com, amunnadi@gmail.com

Original Sources:  Investopedia, 2016.  Wikipedia, 2016. Horowitz, Richard (2010). The Global Anti-Money Laundering Regime – A Short Overview. Cayman Free Press Ltd.

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THE BENEFIT OF HINDSIGHT

THE BENEFIT OF HINDSIGHT

Throughout history, mankind has never failed to repeat the same mistakes. The rise of each empire or civilization has always been phenomenal but each plummeted just when they reached their peak. The reason is that man is selfish and cannot manage power and moral. He lives in a finite earth which he plunders to his benefit, and everyone wants a sustainable share, or even all the share. Frank Buchman (1878- 1961) said, “there is enough in the world for everyone's need, but not enough for everyone's greed.” Since existence depends on a finite earth and its endowments, clash is inevitable and war cannot be ruled out, so long as equity and mutuality cannot be peacefully achieved. Olden civilizations – Chinese, Egyptian, Assyrian, Babylonian, the Medo-Persian, the Greek, and the Roman – all crumbled at the feet of mismanagement of power and moral. In early Twentieth Century, nineteen hundred years after the Roman Caesars, the imperative of war and unilateral hegemony was reset by President Teddy Roosevelt of America when he said, "We'll speak loudly and carry a big stick." 

Of course, America buoyed by its enormous economic and military power, has been the world's policeman ever since. And, to its credit, it has been the best haven of all nationalities in the world. However, while the Cold War with Soviet Union lasted, several irrepressible fractions developed across the world in different countries, some religious, some ethnic or tribal, some political, and some even anti- America. By the time the Cold War ended in 1989, the world was full of bleeding sores of wars, of warlords and of war machines. With the breakup of the Soviet Union into several republics in 1991, and with the “fall” of communism and the triumph and ascendancy of capitalism, America's international pre-eminence became incontestable. Unfortunately, the years 1990 to 2000 witnessed the rise of many other “powers” and major globalizing developments. There was, and still continues, a fast-paced globalization of culture, trade, travel, and democracy, all powered by the pervasive information and telecommunications technology. The Internet became the global 'village' arena for both the good and the obnoxious. Inter-continental communications and multi-country operations became extremely easy. Both good and evil utilized these enormous technologies. This is the period that witnessed terrors in the moulds of El Salvador's, Somalia's, Rwanda massacre, Afghanistan's Taliban, Northern Ireland, Hamas versus Israel, Albanians versus the Serbians, to say nothing of many other mushrooming local conflicts. It is a wonder the world did not enter a World War III before Year 2000. The Twentieth Century began with war and ended with war. Though it has the highest achievements in science and technology, including several trips to the moon, it is also the bloodiest century in human history – very modern but very bloody! Unfortunately this new century started with war and terrorism and who knows the end! Sleep with two eyes closed is getting harder. 

THE RECENT DISORDERS

World events since 2001 show indeed that the world remains as fractional as ever but now 'disordered' in other ways. A complete century of tremendous human progress since 1900 has been negated with unfathomable regression in character, social order, economic equity and natural environmental peace. The global landscape is being reconfigured in several (strange) ways, besides politically or militarily. Civilization or nationhood is not all about military and economic independence. What carries and sustains any civilization is the moral strength and character of its people. Several civilizations on earth have been perpetuated through the moral ruggedness of their people. Unfortunately, the moral gene of mankind has deteriorated terribly in the last one hundred years. According to Mahatma Gandhi, the great Indian patriot who died in 1948, the seven social sins are “politics without principles, wealth without work, pleasure without conscience, education without character, commerce without morality, worship without sacrifice, and science without humanity.” 

Today we glory on these evils. Street prostitutes in the 1930s in Europe had shame – they wore long gowns with elbow-length sleeves like saintly women (Bernard, 1999). Today, supposed decent ladies and girls are all but stripped in their Western-style clothing and have not the slightest shame. Everywhere you look and everywhere you go, you will see a woman or a girl that is half-naked. Every receptionist or female bank teller has to be a painted, breast-showing Hollywood look-alike! Womanhood is the backbone of any nation but with this degradation the world has entered an irreversible plunge to cultural and moral disaster. Then to complete this act of reprobation, same-sex marriage is now law in many countries. Adultery, if done for business purposes, is also legal in some countries. Man-animal marriages are now old news! The most celebrated was the man who wedded a dog in San Francisco, USA, in February 2014. 

What has cultural life to do with global disorder? Everything! If our human value is lost, we will probably wind up with animal value and animal sense. Nature itself is revolting against man's intransigence: witness the unrelenting level of earthquakes, tsunamis, wild fires, climate change, drought, acid rain, nameless diseases, etc. What about unending air and road disasters, frauds, robberies, kidnapping, assassinations, nuclear plant disasters, child abuse, bombing, protests, etc? Bad news come every minute and who can sleep? 

CONCLUSION

Man is plural in worldview, besides being selfish and self-preserving. The new world order of globalization, facilitated by the advances in ICT, has brought mankind into a closer struggle for the resources of a finite earth. Economic and military Darwinism is the name of the game. Unfortunately, man over time has proven that he lacks the virtues needed to manage power and competition. This lack in character is now compounded with moral depravity institutionalized. Right is wrong and wrong is right. That is the latest disorder. Man's power of moral reasoning is diminishing. There is no more audacity in his spine to uphold nobility. So what is next? 

Albert Einstein, the founder of the law of relativity, the greatest scientist in all history, said in 1946, after World War Two, “The unleashed power of the atom has changed everything save our modes of thinking and we thus drift towards unparalleled catastrophe.” Governments and lawmakers all over the world should look again at their plans and decisions. We are not just a permissive society; we are permitting our common and mutual destruction.

SOURCE:  Global Bulletin - Published monthly by Munnad Interfirm Consultants: EAST: 23, University Road, Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria. NORTH CENTRAL: 8, Low Cost Road, G.R.A, Akwanga, Nasarawa State, Nigeria. GSM: +2347032095995; +2348111589509. E-mail: munnadglobalbulletin@gmail.com, amunnadi@yahoo.com, amunnadi@gmail.com

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NEW WORLD DISORDER

NEW WORLD DISORDER 

HAS THE WORLD MURDERED SLEEP? 

There is so much bombardment of chaos in the world today that many fear that doomsday may be near. And the jabs are more neural than ever because the world is globally connected in a complex web. It is like the clinical complications of the overly sick, with every succeeding prescription losing efficacy! Has the world murdered sleep? Kingdoms rise and fall; civilizations are built and quashed again. This is the recurring law of history. Our world seems to have come to a head. All efforts of the United Nations in 72 years have virtually produced more divided nations. We seem to be sailing in a sea of opinions but no anchor. Was there some world order before now? And what is the new order or disorder? 

No doubt, the world is under a siege. It is almost indefinable. Clarity and confusion follow each other; order and disorder lock horns; and Darwinism stands ever tall. A hundred years ago people went to bed with two eyes closed. There was peace. There was tranquility. You and your neighbour were sure of each other. But today people are not even sure of their own shadow. There is uncertainty and everybody is nervous – restless. What is it? The global cosmos has merged and the diverse players are in every neighbourhood: money launderers, drug abusers, mafias, warlords, dictators, kidnappers, baby sellers, government treasury looters, financial meltdowners, 419ners, computer virus injectors, fakes of all sorts, death-fearless terrorists, humanity-bereft scientists, atomic bomb manufacturers, climate change moaners, same-sex couples, feminists, gene cloners, gender exchangers, boogie-woogie idlers, one-world religion enthusiasts, porno promoters, rule-of-law violators, environmental upheavals, and of course restless journalists who tell. 

It all started a century ago. After the World War I ended in 1918, the world knew peace for exactly eighteen years before the Italian dictator, Benito Mussolini, decided that war was better than peace. He invaded Ethiopia in 1936 and barely three years later Adolf Hitler of Germany took the baton and led the world into a devastating war. The world has never known peace since Mussolini and Hitler. And it is neither safer today than in 1945, despite all the leagues and unions in the world. With a galloping global population, and atomization of resources, endless clashes of beliefs and cultures, political tensions, bombs and guns in every corner, social recklessness, and daily reports of disasters from around the globe, the very idea of world peace may have breathed its last. If this is true, we are in a new world disorder. All the efforts of the United Nations in seventy-two years have only produced more divided nations. There is so much disarray today that many now fear a real doomsday. And the jabs of disasters are more neural than ever because the world has been globally networked in a complex web.

SOURCE:  Global Bulletin - Published monthly by Munnad Interfirm Consultants: EAST: 23, University Road, Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria. NORTH CENTRAL: 8, Low Cost Road, G.R.A, Akwanga, Nasarawa State, Nigeria. GSM: +2347032095995; +2348111589509. E-mail: munnadglobalbulletin@gmail.com, amunnadi@yahoo.com, amunnadi@gmail.com

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THE DEATH OF GOVERNANCE

THE DEATH OF GOVERNANCE 

How did Pharaoh, Nebuchadnezzar, Darius, Ahasuerus, Artaxerxes, Alexander the Great, Mansa Musa, and many others rule worldwide kingdoms so easily? And they did so without telephone, without internet or any automobile. And, lately, how did colonial powers, like Britain and France, rule and control vast national territories from India to the Americas, in recent memory? And we can't rule one nation today, and sometimes even one area in a nation. Every nation under the sun today is fighting the fight of their life to govern their people. What is the cause? John Adams, the second President of USA, who ruled from 1797-1801, has a word. After their presidential terms ended, John Adams and Thomas Jefferson carried on a lengthy correspondence until both died on the same day, July 4, 1826, the 50th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence. In a letter dated July 9, 1813, Adams told Jefferson: "While all other sciences have advanced, that of government is at a standstill; little better understood; little better practiced now, than three or four thousand years ago. What is the reason? I say, parties and factions will not suffer, or permit improvements to be made. "As soon as one man hints at an improvement, his rival opposes it. No sooner has one party discovered or invented an amelioration of the condition of man, or the order of society, than the opposite party belies it, misconstrues it, misrepresents it, ridicules it, insults it, and persecutes it" (quoted by Norman Cousins, In God We Trust, 1958, p.231). 

This is the Achilles' heel of democratic governance - rife with party spirit and strife. Opposition parties focus mainly on replacing the incumbent and his colleagues in power rather than helping them rule wisely. It is like tackling your team member who has got the ball and is gearing to score. You tackle him because you'll rather be the one to score or there should be no score at all. Why is this so? Selfishness, greed, vainglory, high-horse pride, opportunism, triumphalism, no true fear of God, a know-it-all mindset and not being ready to learn… Even we followers do the same: let a trader realize that he alone has those goods and he will hike his price immediately to bleed his fellowman. He will blame his action on price of fuel or exchange rate or Christmas season! 

Wars ought to be fought for principles and just purposes, not just for the sake of being in opposition. Government of the people, by the people, for the people, with sensible watch-dog opposition, is dying out fast. In fact, true governance must be dead now, or else how do you explain the piling up of bombs across the world in place of bread and clean water. US President Dwight D. Eisenhower in his farewell address in 1960 said: Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired, signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children. Almost sixty years after that insight, the world has done nothing less – only destroying its own resources by bombs, greed, and wrong priorities. Example: billions are spent to build Olympic-size stadia everywhere and there is no factory to employ youths or water at the taps for drinking. 

Is governance alive? According to intelligent observers of the global scene, the tragedies afflicting this world multiply with every passing year and the options for humanity are narrowing sharply. Our civilization is hanging on too many uncertain variables for its continuance. Leaders and followers must therefore think fast! Global Bulletin will help to raise this consciousness.

SOURCE:  Global Bulletin - Published monthly by Munnad Interfirm Consultants: EAST: 23, University Road, Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria. NORTH CENTRAL: 8, Low Cost Road, G.R.A, Akwanga, Nasarawa State, Nigeria. GSM: +2347032095995; +2348111589509. E-mail: munnadglobalbulletin@gmail.com, amunnadi@yahoo.com, amunnadi@gmail.com

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BASIC FOOD INTELLIGENCE (Part 1)

The ABCs of Food Literacy 


YOU LOVE FOOD BUT … 
Everybody loves food, or at least some types of food. But most people don't know the connection between food and wellbeing. Wrong food is more of an injurer than you realize. People are falling on themselves to become computer literate. But what about being food literate? Food literacy or food intelligence is the ability to forge an alliance between food and good health. Other than genetics and environment, what determines the way you look and feel, more than what you eat? Your body is like a car. It requires maintenance. But it has little or no spare parts. If you feed it the wrong fuel and cause damage, you can't simply install a new engine. You are stuck with only one body given you at birth. Proper fuel (the right food) and good maintenance (general care) are essential to high performance and long-term use of your body. Good feeding entails combining the science of food with the art of food (that is, nutritional knowledge with actual preparation and utilization). 

People may be classified into three by their eating habits and appetites. There are those who eat until they are belly full – they eat simply because living things must eat; in other words, 'man must wack.' What they 'wack' is not important. Then there are those who aim to eat the so-called balanced diet by looking at what they perceive as quality and quantity. Many times they are wrong because they only concentrate on mere combination for 'balance' instead of looking at inherent value of each food. Finally we have those who are food literate who combine nutrition and gastronomy – variety, value, form and delivery. Even animals demonstrate food 'literacy' by discriminating in what they eat? How much more should humans be food 'literate'? Good feeding is not exactly about enough money to afford quality and quantity. One can be rich and still spend the money on the 'wrong' food. Both rich and poor suffer heart disease, high blood pressure, low blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, lack of blood, excess gas, stomach rumble, heartburn, ulcer, constipation, allergy, fatigue, and general sickly feeling. Food literacy is about smart eating, the ABCs of which are able to make you eat well, feel well, look well and remain well. You need to know which foods are the best for you and which ones are potentially detrimental to your health and looks. 

You Are What You Eat. 

Our body runs on the fuel of food. But it is essential to learn the best possible fueling strategy for best performance. God the Creator has given us a wide variety of food fuels but man can excessively 'tamper' with these foods through processing, cooking, and myopic selection. Food intelligence is not about 'dieting' and self-denial. It is about versatility with sensible discrimination. Balanced diet simply expresses the need to feed from the various categories of food. But intelligent feeding is about a discriminating assessment of the potential values and dangers of various foods with respect to actual effects on general well-being, vigour, weight, and physical looks. If a 'balanced' diet ends up giving you obesity or heart disease, then you have been eating the wrong 'balance'. You must know what each type of food would do to you, not just the taste in the mouth or the feeling of being filled or satisfied. 

Food Intelligence is Simple

There are only three kinds of food, and there are only four sources of calories. Yes, we shall be using some technical terms and concepts. Let's go! Various foods produce varying levels of energy and the measuring unit for food energy is known as calorie. First, let us look at the three food types and their characteristics. They are carbohydrates, proteins and fats. 

Carbohydrates: These are our best sources of energy because they burn faster and more efficiently than either protein or fat. There are two groups of carbohydrates: complex carbohydrates, often described as starches, and simple carbohydrates, usually known as sugars. The former include all grain products and vegetables, such as bread, cereals, pastas, corn, rice, yam, cassava, carrots, tomatoes, and potatoes, and all leafy greens such as lettuce, cabbage and spinach. These complex carbohydrates have their varying levels of vitamins, minerals, and fibre. Simple carbohydrates (or sugars for short) include refined sugars, such as cane, beet and brown sugars, and syrups, such as honey, maple syrup, and molasses. Also included in this category are foods high in these concentrated sweets, such as candies, jams, jellies, and sweetened carbonated beverages (soft drinks, etc). Naturally occurring simple carbohydrates include both fresh and dried fruits and fruit juices, such as banana, apricot, pineapple, apple, and orange. Also included is milk, which is naturally high in lactose or milk sugar. Any ingredient ending in “-ose” such as sucrose (ordinary table sugar), lactose, fructose, glucose, dextrose and maltose are all sugars or simple carbohydrates. Now, we haven't said anything against carbohydrates (or sugars for that matter). We have only mentioned their sources. The blog on the Good and Bad Side of Sugar will tackle that (check this edition). 

Proteins: Yes, we need protein. It helps build, maintain, and repair just about every part of our bodies. For good hair, nails, skin , cartilage and tendons, get yourself some protein! Protein is primarily a body builder and the building blocks are known as amino acids. Protein-rich foods don't provide energy as quickly as carbohydrate-rich foods. Their main work is the growth, maintenance, and repair of body cells. There are two sources of food protein: animal and plant protein. Animal protein, which is any protein of animal origin, including fish [don't forget shellfish, salmon, tuna, shrimp, lobster]; poultry (chicken, turkey, duck, guinea fowl, etc); meat (beef, pork, mutton, goat, bush meat, etc); dairy products (milk, cream, cheese, and yogurt), and eggs of all types.

Fish is very good because it is lower in fat than poultry or meat. But poultry when eaten without the skin is lower in fat than most meat. In fact, avoid that outer skin of poultry! 

Meat (such as beef) is in three grades – prime, choice, and select – determined by its marbling, that is, that streak of fat running through the red muscle of the meat. Prime grade contains the most marbling, followed by choice, and then select. Select contains the least amount of fat and is the best. 

Dairy products [milk and co] are categorized by the amount of butterfat they contain. Milk has three categories: non-fat or skim milk, low fat milk and whole milk. Whole milk has the highest butterfat. Non-fat or skim milk has more calcium and vitamins per volume than low-fat and whole milk because the fat in the latter displace other nutrients. Skim milk is also lower in cholesterol and calories than these. When buying dairy products, always look for reduced-fat-content on labels. Egg whites are pure protein, even though the taste is not as good as the yolk. Egg yolks contain both cholesterol and saturated fat. Heart health authorities [e.g. American Heart Association] say you shouldn't consume more than 300 milligrams of cholesterol per day and one egg contains two-thirds of it! Now, that's probably for the USA, where they have more than enough of these. In Africa, nutrition experts recommend an egg a day, especially for children. In any case, note that foods rich in animal protein contain varying amounts of fat and cholesterol. 

Plant protein is found in all unrefined plant foods, of which the good sources include legumes (all dried beans and peas), beans, soybeans, black-eyed beans, kidney beans, peanuts, etc and products made from them. There is no cholesterol in any food of plant origin. Animal protein contains all nine of the essential amino acids which the body needs and cannot manufacture but must get from food. These essential amino acids are also found in plants, but not all in the same plant; this necessitates the combination of variety of plants to take advantage of the varying amino acids. This is why legumes and grains complement each other so well. Together they give the full range of amino acids. Examples of this combination are beans and rice, beans and pap, beans soup and tuwo (swallow), peas and cornbread, peanut butter and whole wheat bread, etc. Nuts and seeds are also good sources of plant protein; however, they contain too much fat to be used as a regular source of vegetable protein. They are in fact classified as fats and should be used mainly for flavour and texture. 

Fats are greasy substances (solid or liquid) found in foods from both plants and animals. Fats enable us to absorb vitamins that are not water soluble (Vitamins A, D, E, and K: Vitamins B and C dissolve in water). But you don't need to eat fats to get fat. Your body manufactures fat from the protein and carbohydrate-rich foods you eat whenever you consume more than you need. This 'extra' fat is stored to be used for energy whenever carbohydrates are not available, but it does not offer the same quick energy as 'normal' energy from carbohydrates because of slow digestion and release. There are three classes of fats, identified by the predominant type of fatty acid they contain: saturated fats, poly-saturated fats, and mono-unsaturated fats. All fats are in fact a mix of these three acids but their proportions vary, therefore they are classified by the predominant fatty acid. 

To be continued...

Source: GLOBAL BULLETING: Published monthly by Munnad Interfirm Consultants: EAST: 23, University Road, Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria. NORTH CENTRAL: 8, Low Cost Road, G.R.A, Akwanga, Nasarawa State, Nigeria. GSM: +2347032095995; +2348111589509. E-mail: munnadglobalbulletin@gmail.com;  amunnadi@yahoo.com;  amunnadi@gmail.com

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