The “IronCowboy” Completes 50 Ironmans in 50 Days in 50 States!…/iron-cowboy-finishes-50-triath…/…

Truly amazing! Iron Cowboy completes 50 Ironmans in 50 states in 50 days! He wanted to raise awareness for the Jamie Oliver Food Foundation and show the world what people can accomplish when eating real food! Love the part where he talks about following your heart, setting your own limits in life and not letting anyone tell you no! Check out his interview with Fox New by clicking the link above.


Arthritis Pain and Food

Do you know anyone suffering from Arthritis Pain?  IF you do, this is a great article from The Physicians Committee Of Responsible Medicine to share on how to ease the pain by picking certain foods over others.

Foods and Arthritis


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Millions of people suffer from painful and swollen joints associated with arthritis. In the past, many doctors told arthritis patients that dietary changes would not help them. However, this conclusion was based on older research with diets that included dairy products, oil, poultry or meat.  New research shows that foods may be a more frequent contributor to arthritis than is commonly recognized. It is clear that, at least for some people, a healthier menu is the answer.

Different Types of Arthritis

Arthritis is actually a group of different diseases. Osteoarthritis is a gradual loss of cartilage and overgrowth of bone in the joints, especially the knees, hips, spine and fingertips. Over 20 million Americans, mostly over age 45, suffer from osteoarthritis, which seems to be the result of accumulated wear and tear. Although it can cause painful episodes, it is characterized by only transient stiffness and does not cause major interference with the use of the hands.

Rheumatoid arthritis, which affects over 2 million people, is a more aggressive form of the disease. It causes painful, inflamed joints, which sometimes become damaged.

Rheumatoid arthritis is one of medicine’s mysteries. There were no medical reports of the disease until the early 1800s. Some have suspected that a virus or bacterium may play a role, perhaps by setting off an autoimmune reaction. Genetics may also be a factor, in that it may influence susceptibility to the disease.

The Role of Diet

For years, people have suspected that foods are an important factor in the development of rheumatoid arthritis. Many notice an improvement in their condition when they avoid dairy products, citrus fruits, tomatoes, eggplant, and certain other foods.

Initially, the evidence was anecdotal. A woman from the Midwest once suffered from painful arthritis. Today she is a picture of health, thin and athletic, and her arthritis is totally gone. It seemed that dairy products were to blame for her arthritis, for when she eliminated them from her diet, the arthritis disappeared completely.

Another woman, from Wisconsin, also found that her arthritis was clearly linked to dairy products. Although she had been raised on a dairy farm, she learned that staying away from dairy products was the key to relieving her symptoms.

A 1989 survey of over one thousand arthritis patients revealed that the foods most commonly believed to worsen the condition were red meat, sugar, fats, salt, caffeine, and nightshade plants (e.g. tomatoes, eggplant). Once the offending food is eliminated completely, improvement usually comes within a few weeks. Dairy foods are probably one of the principle offenders, and the problem is the dairy protein, rather than the fat, so skim products are as much a problem as whole milk.

An increasing volume of research shows that certain dietary changes do in fact help. For example, polyunsaturated oils and omega-3 supplements have a mild beneficial effect, and researchers have found that vegan diets are beneficial. One 2002 study looked at the influence of a very low fat vegan diet on subjects with moderate to severe RA. After only four weeks on the diet, almost all measures of RA symptoms decreased significantly. The journal Rheumatology published a study that found a gluten-free vegan diet improved the signs and symptoms of RA. An uncooked vegan diet, rich in antioxidants and fiber was shown in another study to decrease joint stiffness and pain in patients with RA. Some research studies have looked at fasting followed by a vegetarian or vegan diet. A review of multiple research studies concluded that this dietary treatment might be useful in the treatment of RA.

Vegan diets dramatically reduce the overall amount of fat in the diet, and alter the composition of fats. This, in turn, can affect the immune processes that influence arthritis. The omega-3 fatty acids in vegetables may be a key factor, along with the near absence of saturated fat. The fact that patients also lose weight on a vegan diet contributes to the improvement.

In addition, vegetables are rich in antioxidants, which can neutralize free radicals. Oxygen free radicals attack many parts of the body, contribute to heart disease and cancer, and intensify the aging processes generally, including of the joints.

Iron acts as a catalyst, encouraging the production of these dangerous molecules. Vitamins C and E, which are plentiful in a diet made of vegetables and grains, help neutralize free radicals. Meats supply an overload of iron, no vitamin C, and very little vitamin E, whereas vegetables contain more controlled amounts of iron, and generous quantities of antioxidant vitamins.

As well as being helpful in preventing arthritis, antioxidants may also have a role in reducing its symptoms.

Some arthritis treatments, including non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, work at least in part by neutralizing free radicals. For the most part, however, vitamins and other antioxidants will be of more use in preventing damage before it occurs, rather than in treating an inflamed joint.

A diet drawn from fruits, vegetables, grains and beans therefore appears to be helpful in preventing and, in some cases, ameliorating arthritis.

The Four-Week Anti-Arthritis Diet (adapted from Foods That Fight Pain, by Neal Barnard, M.D.)

For four weeks, include generous amounts of foods from the pain-safe list in your routine.
At the same time, scrupulously avoid the major triggers. It is important to avoid these foods completely, as even a small amount can cause symptoms.

Foods that are not on either list can be consumed, so long as you are emphasizing the arthritis-safe foods and scrupulously avoiding the major triggers.

You may well experience benefits earlier than four weeks, but for some people it can take this long for chronically inflamed joints to cool down.

It is not recommended to bring meats, dairy products, or eggs back into your diet. Not only are they major triggers, but they also encourage hormone imbalances that may contribute to joint pain and also lead to many other health problems.

Avoid Major Arthritis Triggers

*All dairy products should be avoided: skim or whole cow’s milk, goat’s milk, cheese, yogurt, etc.
**All meats should be avoided: beef, pork, chicken, turkey, fish, etc.

Other Approaches

For some arthritis patients, supplements of certain essential fatty acids have been helpful. They should be thought of as a medicine, rather than a food. A typical regimen would include a tablespoon of flaxseed oil with 500 mg of blackcurrant oil (or 3 capsules of evening primrose oil) twice each day. If it is helpful, it should be reduced to the lowest effective dose. Some people also benefit from an herb called feverfew taken 2-3 times per day. (Caution: Do not take feverfew if you are pregnant.)


Pain-safe foods virtually never contribute to arthritis or other painful conditions. These include:

  •   Brown rice
  •   Cooked or dried fruits: cherries, cranberries, pears, prunes (but not citrus fruits, bananas, peaches or tomatoes)
  •   Cooked green, yellow, and orange vegetables: arti- chokes, asparagus, broccoli, chard, collards, lettuce, spinach, string beans, summer or winter squash, sweet potatoes, tapioca, and taro (poi)
  •   Water: plain water or carbonated forms, such as Perrier, are fine. Other beverages—even herbal teas—can be triggers.
  •   Condiments: modest amounts of salt, maple syrup, and vanilla extract are usually well tolerated.

After four weeks, if your symptoms have improved or disappeared, the next step is to nail down which one or more of the trigger foods has been causing your problem. Simply reintroduce the foods you have eliminated back into your diet one at a time, every two days.

Have a generous amount of each newly reintroduced food, and see whether your joints flare up again. If so, eliminate the food that seems to have caused the problem, and let your joints cool down again. Then continue to reintroduce the other foods. Wait at least two weeks before trying a problem food a second time. Many people have more than one food trigger.


1. Panush RS, Carter RL, Katz P, Kowsari B, Longley S, Finnie S. Diet therapy for rheu- matoid arthritis. Arthritis and Rheumatism 1983;26:462-71.

2. Lithell H, Bruce A, Gustafsson IB, et al. A fasting and vegetarian diet treatment trial on chronic inflammatory disorders. Acta Derm Venereol 1983;63:397-403.

3. Sobel D. Arthritis: What Works. New York, St. Martin’s Press, 1989.

4. Skoldstam L, Larsson L, Lindstrom FD. Effects of fasting and lactovegetarian diet on rheumatoid arthritis. Scand J Rheumatol 1979;8:249-55.

5. Skoldstam L. Fasting and vegan diet in rheumatoid arthritis. Scand J Rheumatol 1986;15:219-23.

6. McDougall J, Bruce B, Spiller G, Westerdahl J, McDougall M. Effects of a very low- fat, vegan diet in subjects with rheumatoid arthritis. J Altern Complement Med. 2002 Feb;8(1):71-5.

7. Hafstrom I, Ringertz B, Spangberg A, et al. A vegan diet free of gluten improves the signs and symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis: the effects on arthritis correlate with a reduction in antibodies to food antigens. Rheumatology (Oxford). 2001 Oct;40(10):1175-9.

8. Hanninen, Kaartinen K, Rauma AL, et al. Antioxidants in vegan diet and rheumatic disorders. Toxicology. 2000 Nov 30;155(1-3):45-53.

9. Muller H, de Toledo FW, Resch KL. Fasting followed by vegetarian diet in patients with rheumatoid arthritis: a systematic review. Scand J Rheumatol. 2001;30(1):1-10. 10. Merry P, Grootveld M, Lunec J, Blake DR. Oxidative damage to lipids within the

inflamed human joint provides evidence of radical-mediated hypoxic-reperfusion injury. Am J Clin Nutr 1991;53:362S-9S.



Lentil Soup Recipe

Need a protein and iron boost? Try this delicious lentil soup!
Here I chopped 1 clove garlic, 2 carrots, 2 stalks celery, 1 onion and 1 cup of spinach. Added 1.5 quarts of veggie broth, 1.5 cups green lentils (pre-soaked) salt, red pepper flakes and a veggie bouillon cube.

Directions: Bring bouillon cube and 1-2 inches of water to a boil in a pot first, then add the veggies for 5 minutes. Add rest of ingredients and Cook for 35 minutes.'s photo.

Today Show Interview with Russell Simmons on Why He is Vegan

Hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons shares secrets of being a ‘happy’ vegan

Lisa Flam


He’s a hip hop star-maker, a fashion mogul and a devout yogi. And for nearly 17 years, Russell Simmons has also been something else: a vegan.

Russell Simmons shows Al Roker the perks of a vegan lifestyle


Simmons, who was an early convert to the diet trend just as it was catching on, sat down with TODAY’s Al Roker recently to discuss his eating style. Roker asked what led Simmons, 57, to go vegan long before it became trendy.

“Well, it started with my yoga practice and you know, the practice of non-harming, ‘ahimsa,’” he told Roker. “So I became a vegan because [of] compassion [for] the animals.”

“The vegan diet was being discussed around me all the time, so finally,” Simmons said, “I just made the choice.”

Gluten-free and juicing: Are these diet trends right for you?

Being vegan, which is not eating any food that comes from an animal, is the subject of Simmons’ book, “The Happy Vegan,” due out this fall. Vegans are vegetarians in the strictest sense — no meat, poultry, fish, dairy, eggs or even things like gelatin and honey.

Experts say veganism has its health rewards.

Make an easy, summery vegan quinoa salad with summer squash, scallions and almonds

“One of the biggest advantages of the vegan diet is that it is low in saturated fat,” NBC News medical contributor Dr. Natalie Azar said on TODAY. “It’s also high in fiber. That’s a very heart-healthy diet.

“So for people who are looking to control their cholesterol, and high blood pressure, and certain cardiovascular risk factors, this could be the diet for you,” she added.

Being a vegan has helped Simmons drop some weight and feel good.

“The first thing I did was lose 20 pounds and I haven’t put that back on,” Simmons said. “Do I feel better than I felt 15, 17 years ago? Yeah I think so. I think I’m in pretty good shape.”

Learn how a trucker lost 65 pounds by cooking vegan meals – and get his recipe for vegan mac ‘n’ cheese

Other bold-faced names like Ellen DeGeneres, Gwyneth Paltrow and Carrie Underwood have all reportedly embraced the vegan way. Even Mike Tyson knocked the meat out of his diet.

But, there are caveats. Azar notes that “certain vitamins such as B12 are only found in animal sources, so they need to be supplemented.”

Only 2 percent of Americans eat vegan, according to a 2012 Gallup poll. To prove that a vegan meal could satisfy a carnivore like Roker, he and Simmons met up for dinner at one of Simmons’ favorite vegan spots in New York City, Red Bamboo.

After a vegan dinner followed by vegan cake and ice cream, the pair was stuffed.

“That’s insane,” Roker said. “Wow!”

“I’m done,” Simmons said. “There are fat vegans. No reason you can’t be a fat vegan.” contributor Lisa A. Flam is a news and lifestyles reporter in New York. Follow her onTwitter.

Best and Worst Foods for Longevity

Notice that the top 10 are all plant foods!

Ten Best and Worst Foods for Health and Longevity

Photo of raw foods

I am often asked for my list of the best foods to eat — the foods that contain the most micronutrients, phytochemicals and other health-promoting compounds. People want to know which high-nutrient foods provide the keys to optimum health and longevity. They are searching for a simple answer to the question, “What should I eat to reach my ideal weight, achieve immunity to disease and feel my best every day?”

It is difficult to squeeze all the nutrient dense, health promoting foods into a list of the ten best. The foods on my list however, are the foods that I believe everyone should include in their diet on a regular basis. They strongly protect against cancer and favor longevity. They contain the most vitamins and minerals and powerful phytochemicals including allium compounds, glucosinolates, aromatase inhibitors, flavonoids and lignans. Of course not all of my favorites could make my top ten and the runners-up include many other vegetables and fruits.

Ten Best Foods

It is almost just as challenging to take all the bad foods in the world and condense them down to the worst of the worst. Foods have the power to heal but also have the power to harm. Our leading causes of death, including cancer, diabetes, and heart disease are primarily the result of the foods we eat. The wrong foods can be as addictive as drugs and alcohol and can cause us to lead lives that provide only a fraction of our potential for health, energy level and physiological well-being.

Foods such as dairy and other animal products are rich in substances that scientific investigations have shown to be associated with cancer and heart disease incidence: animal protein, saturated fat, cholesterol and arachidonic acid.1 The high animal protein content of dairy increases levels of IGF-1 in the blood, which increases cancer risk. The combination of dairy with insulin-raising sugars is even more dangerous when it comes to cancer risk.2Processed foods containing refined white sugar, refined white flour, salt and oil comprise over 60 percent of the calories in the American diet3 but provide little if any of the antioxidant nutrients or phytochemicals that are essential for preventing chronic disease and premature death. Salt consumption has been linked to both stomach cancer and hypertension.4 Needless to say, I advise people to avoid the foods on my “worst” list entirely.

Ten Worst Foods

  • Sweetened Dairy Products (e.g. ice cream, low-fat ice cream, frozen yogurt)
  • Trans Fat Containing Foods (e.g. stick margarine, shortening, fast foods, commercial baked goods)
  • Donuts
  • Sausage, Hot Dogs, and Luncheon Meats
  • Smoked Meat, Barbecued Meat and Conventionally-Raised Red Meat
  • Fried Foods including Potato Chips and French Fries
  • Highly-salted Foods
  • Soda
  • Refined White Sugar
  • Refined White Flour

It is clear that unrefined plant foods should make up the bulk of your diet and that fruits and vegetables score highest on the nutrient density scale in terms of concentration of nutrients per calorie. It is also obvious to anyone who has studied the research and looked at the trends in recent years, that a diet based on refined processed foods and animal products cannot sustain optimum health and protection against disease.


1. Campbell TC, Junshi C. Diet and chronic degenerative diseases: perspective from China. Am J Clin Nutr. 1994;59(suppl 5):-S1153-61; Singh PN, Sabate J, Fraser GE. Does low meat consumption increase life expectance in humans? Am J Clin Nutr. 2003 Sep;78(suppl 3):S526-32; Fraiser, GE. Associations between diet and cancer, ischemic heart disease, and all-cause mortality in non-Hispanic white California Seventh-Day Adventists. Am J Clin Nutr. 1999;70 (suppl 3):S532-38.
2. Kaaks R. Nutrition, insulin, IGF-1 metabolism and cancer risk: a summary of epidemiological evidence. Novartis Found Symp 2004;262:247-260; discussion 260-268.
Qin LQ, He K, Xu JY. Milk consumption and circulating insulin-like growth factor-I level: a systematic literature review. Int J Food Sci Nutr 2009;60 Suppl 7:330-340.
3. USDA Economics Research Service, 2005, Consumption/FoodGuideIndex.htm3calories
4. Tsugane S, Sasazuki S. Diet and the risk of gastric cancer. Gastric Cancer 2007;10(2):75-83;  Strazzullo P, D’Elia L, Ngianga-Bakwin K, Cappucio FP. Salt Intake, stroke, and cardiovascular disease: meta-analysis of prospective studies BMJ. 2009;339:b4567.