Will This Talk You into Flossing?

“Have you been flossing?” my hygienist would ask. She’d ask a moose! I suspect she asks out of habit because only 5 to 10% of people floss daily. OK, that’s more than moose do, but hardly anything to brag about! Maybe she also asks because she can tell by looking that I don’t and she hopes to prod me into doing it.

But when the 6-month cleaning was done with the usual no cavities, I’d strut out of the office smugly thinking, “Hah, who needs to go to all that trouble with these pearly whites!”

Now, as I slink out after 4-month cleanings and extra sessions for cavities and crowns, ol’ Broose is open to the idea of flossing.

Why do dentists string us along?

1. “If you don’t floss your teeth on a daily basis, you might as well start saving up for dentures,” warns Jonathan B. Levine, DMD. So save money on dental bills.

2. Avoid plaque. Fine to have one on your wall for exemplary writing but not on your teeth.

3. Avoid tartar, cavities and gum infection. Who wouldn’t like to do without painful excavations with pickaxe, jackhammer and needles! The crown I want is at the resurrection!

4. This one sounds like scare talk hard to believe: “Extensive research has shown that the bacteria that fluorish in an unhealthy mouth can harm the rest of the body, leading to heart disease [the leading cause of death in the U.S.], diabetes [more than 25 million Americans] and respiratory illness” (“5 Reasons Why Flossing Is Extremely Important” by Matt Cunningham). Another source warns of alzheimer’s, I forget which. But that’s why dentists believe the mouth is the door to the body, and they want us to floss it when in other situations it might be just as advantageous to close it.

5. How could ol’ Broose put this one reason to floss about that last really serious one? This one might be the one that talks you into it! Food dropped between your teeth, even after brushing and mouthwash, sits there and rots, forming sulfur compounds that create a rotten egg smell, isovaleric acid that reeks like sweat, putrescine like rotten meat, skatole like human feces and cadaverine like decomposing bodies. Lovely aroma! Good thing ol’ Broose lives alone.

True confession about why I have shuddered to floss. I have this phobia that the string will get stuck in there and how would I get it out without a visit to the ER. Sometimes the hygienists really had to yank!  Remember from an earlier blog, we committed to no fear?  Perfect loving flossing casts it out!

Peggy Rosen, a dentist, says it’s important to floss immediately after eating. Most dentists will be happy if we rub-a-dub-dub daily. Though it’s hard to believe, flossing daily will add 6 years to our life, writes Dr. Michael Roizen in RealAge.  Just what I want: 6 more years of flossing!

Now, where did I toss that floss into the drawer?

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FUN FACT: Moose have long faces, but not because of sadness over bad breath. A herbivore diet helps prevent halitosis which is not a worry anyway when you live alone and never learned 1,001 ways to cook with garlic.

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Should We Be Eating and Drinking This Stuff?

For a few weeks now I’ve been off Pepsi. That surprises you? What, you thought moose prefer Coke? News in recent years about what an effective toilet bowl cleaner it is shocked me but didn’t stop me: who could afford to waste a good Pepsi on that! Besides, my pipes could probably benefit from a good scouring.

But recent pictures on Facebook with packets of sugar overwhelming the poor soda and warnings about drinking my way to diabetes finally got to me. A 12 oz. bottle of Pepsi contains 41 grams of sugar and 150 calories. Since this exceeds both recommended limits for daily consumption by the American Heart Association — 30 grams per day and 120 calories — stopping should be a no brainer, which suits me just fine. So what are my fellow Americans not using when they choose to eat 4 times as much sugar as we should? We all need more won’t power.

Next morning I was shopping for some pancake syrup. One brand bannered that it contained no High Fructose Corn Syrup. They wanted me to pay 50 cents extra as thanks for them leaving it out. That started me to wondering: should I be eating and drinking that stuff?

No surprise that the top spot on Bing was snagged by the Corn Refiners Association and is replete with experts quoting scientific studies and stating that all complaints against HFCS are myths. “There is no scientific evidence that high fructose corn syrup is to blame for obesity and diabetes.”

Yet many sites claim there are many research studies proving just that. One site written by Holly Klamer, MS, RD notes that “the definition of sugar, or what exactly is added sugar, is not well-defined or consistent in research studies.” That could explain why one study proves a point that another disproves.

Broose as jury of one: I don’t know enough about nutrition and chemistry to tell which research really proves what. But when friends who really dig into these all agree that HFCS is harmful, I am biased in that directionl

The CRA site argues that the 2 commentators who started all the fuss in 2004, Barry Popkin of the University of North Carolina and George Bray of the Pennington Biomedical Research Center, have since realized the error of their claims and now believe that “All sugar you eat is the same…” To prove that, the site gives this chart, which proves that they’re not exactly the same!

— Table sugar = 50% fructose and 50% glucose
— Honey = 52% fructose and 48% glucose
— HFCS-42 = 42% fructose + 58% glucose
— HFCS-55 = 55% fructose + 45% glucose

Thus, David Katz, M.D. claims “The notion that a 5 percent differential in fructose content has much of anything to do with current public health ills is more than a little far-fetched (“Perils of a Sugar-Coated Scapegoat,” Huffington Post, 6/4/2012).

Broose’s jury: When I think about the amazing production of honey by bees, in all its intricate created details, my gut instinct is that is what the healthiest percentages should be. My money should be on honey. Yet I find myself bringing home the pancake syrup, wishing I could afford the 100% maple.

“When high-fructose corn syrup and sugar are absorbed into our bloodstream, the two are indistinguishable by the body” adds Joan Salge Blake, M.S., R.D., L.D.N. on the CRA site.

Not so, say critics of HFCS:

1) “White corn starch processed from genetically modified corns is made to yield glucose under high temperature. The glucose is then converted into fructose. Being a highly processed sweetener, HFCS is synthetic! A Study by Institute of Agriculture and Trade Policy (2009) even revealed that some of this syrup is manufactured using mercury-grade caustic soda.”

2) “Refined HFCS is metabolized by your liver and does not cause the pancreas to release insulin the way the body normally does. Thus it converts to fat more than any other sugar.”

3) HFCS “easily results in overeating because it fails to stimulate leptin, the hormone that triggers chemical signals to tell the brain your stomach is full, like other foods containing regular refined sugar do.”

4) “What is even more disturbing is, when HFCS is heated/cooked, it becomes contaminated with hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF). And when HMF breaks down in the human body, they become even more toxic than HMF itself.”

All myths, the CRA site claims, HFCS “contains no artificial or synthetic ingredients or color additives. It also meets the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s requirements for use of the term ‘natural.’” When we see how games are played with the term “organic” and hear that a manufacturer can claim a product has nothing as long as there is less than 1% of it, I think we all know how reassuring that is!

Broose’s jury: Eat foods as close to their truly natural state and eat them before they spoil. So don’t eat me because I’ve been spoiled a long time!

All agree that we should dramatically cut our sugar intake. Prov. 25:16 advises to eat only a little honey. In addition, I have purposed to avoid products with HFCS. I will have to replace items currently in my frig — ketchup, strawberry preserves, and who knows what else — with healthier choices.

So I’ll drink to that … a tall glass of water.

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Fun Fact: Moose need to consume 9,770 calories per day. Jealous you can’t eat all that without becoming a fat pig? Hah, would you be happy with our diet called herbivore (plants and vegetation)? Our name moose comes from the Algonquian Eastern Abnaki “moz” which literally means “twig eater.” Because of our height we like to dine on tall grasses and shrubs. In winter, grub is shrubs and pinecones, and after clearing away snow with our large hooves, we munch the exposed mosses and lichens. In summer you’ll find us in water slurping up plants both at and below the surface.

“The Word Became Flesh and Dwelt Among Us”

The birth of Jesus Christ was a big event for us all, regardless of when you think he was born, because we all need a Savior.

Thinking about THE UNEXPECTED, consider Mary who I’m sure had entertained no grand idea of bearing the promised Savior, and certainly didn’t think the father of her first child would be someone besides Joseph. I’m also sure she didn’t expect the father to be the Father!

Ironically it was while recently studying about the 5 clues in the Bible that indicate when Jesus was born that I learned something unexpected to share with you. You can study into these 5 clues if interested:

1. No shepherds out in the fields at night during Judean winters. Can I ever relate to that one deep in my bones during Colorado winters!

2. Roman census not conducted when roads treacherous but rather in autumn when harvest completed and convenient for people to travel.

3. John the Baptist’s father Zacharias serving in the temple during the 8th course of Abijah when Gabriel announced his son’s birth.

4. Jesus conceived by Mary during the 6th month of her cousin Elizabeth’s pregnancy.

5. John 1:14 “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.” The Greek word for dwelt (eskenosen) can be translated “tabernacled, pitched tent.”

It’s this 5th clue that I’m sharing with you as THE UNEXPECTED. The Companion Bible (1974 edition, Appendix 179, page 199) explains that John 1:14 is erroneously read as if both phrases are one and refer to His birth. That’s how I was understanding this verse all these years. Not so, says this reference. They are 2 separate Greek clauses, and Jesus became flesh at His conception and tabernacled among us at His birth. It’s interesting that the rest of John 1:14 praises Him as “the only begotten of the Father.”

Good thing nobody believed in abortion back then.

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Fun Fact: Moose are too busy mating in September and October to worry about when Christ was born. You’ll hear us bellowing for female attention!

Don’t Make This Moosetake

Hi everybody!  This is your friend and His, Broose … Broose the Moose!

If “To err is human” then I should have no worries. And I’m determining not to worry about anything anyway because that’s one of the 4 enemies of faith (also doubt, fear and human reason), as you recall from my first blog.

But once when I goofed up, I asked the person to kindly overlook my “moosetake,” a slip of the tongue which of course immediately doubled my downhill spiral. We laughed about it, no harm done.

But it’s no laughing matter when we blind ourselves to really important matters, especially if we don’t even realize we’re doing it — and depriving ourselves.

In the past 2 months I started (harkening back to my first blog) studying into kindness. What a nice surprise when somebody does something really kind for us.

Maybe that explains why in a “Dear Abby” column about seeking popularity, Abby’s advice was “The key to being well-liked by both sexes is: ‘Be kind.’”

In a 2003 University of Texas study of 37 cultures around the world, when 16,000 subjects were asked about their most desired traits in a mate, for both sexes, the first preference was kindness.

Who knew kindness to be so sexy!

But the highest standard of kindness reaches way beyond that all the way to godly. In Gal. 5:22-23 Paul specifies 9 fruits of the Holy Spirit, the fifth one being kindness, which we should ask for daily. These fruits are gifts of the Holy Spirit, not something we can work up by our own human or moosey effort or willpower.

Here’s what I came to see I was really doing wrong: When I came across an article or message about kindness, I would skim it or tune out the speaker. Because I was thinking “That’s nice but I’m already kind.”

Yeah … kind of missing out!

Glen Campell’s 1970 hit song “Try a Little Kindness” included a very perceptive line, “And if you try a little kindness, then you’ll overlook the blindness.” As we have seen, the blindness might be our own! And the loss.

Now weeks later I’ve come to see the error of my ways even more far reaching: I must be on the alert to make sure I’m not thinking “That’s nice but I’m already …” in other areas where change is needed.

May we rid ourselves of such preconceived notions which are worse than a moosetake; they’re delusional blunders that blind us and block personal growth.

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Fun Fact: The gestation period for a cow to have 1 or 2 calves is 8 months. Before you ladies envy the female moose for missing out on that last month of discomfort, of course her last month just comes earlier! The new calf hangs out with Mom for one year and then goes off to live alone, hardly a lifestyle to encourage growth in kindness. Resist the urge to come chat or pet because invading our space brings out the aggressiveness in us.

You Just Have to Start

Hi everybody!  This is your friend and His, Broose … Broose the Moose!

Behold, before your very eyes:  my first blog!

Long before I even knew what a blog is, of course I wanted to write one like everybody and his uncle.  As far as I know I have only one uncle still living, and you’re probably regretting that already.  But only now did I google “blog” and learn that it’s short for “weblog.”  Aren’t typos pathetic?  You won’t find it here.  We blog.  Hey, just having some fun with you.  As we moose like to say, watch out for that log!

I hear you thinking.  OK, I hear you muttering:  “Great, just what we need … another blog by a stupid old moose!”

Actually, with apologies to Yogi, I can say in all humility that I’m smarter than the average moose.  If you’re feeling like your life is barely keeping your head above the murky waters, I’m your man!  That’s my forte.  I’ll leave it up to you what to call it, but I definitely go for stand-up.

Who couldn’t use a little unexpected!

I wasn’t expecting to find the perfect book, free at the library, just at the moment I needed it.  You can call it time and chance, but I look to God to direct my life.  I highly recommend Start by Jon Acuff.

Jon writes:  “No one aims for average.  No one sets out for status quo.  No one longs for ordinary.  But one day you wake up and ask yourself, How did I get here?  You wonder if there’s a way to be more awesome, more often.  A way to punch fear in the face, escape average and do work that matters.”  His answer is the title of this opening blog:  “You just have to start.”

That’s from the jacket.  Do yourself a favor and read the book.  I’m halfway through and already inspired that fear and doubt feed off of yesterday and tomorrow but give way to starting today.   Will you join me in resolving to banish the 4 enemies of faith:  worry, fear, doubt and human reason.  Come to think of it, you’re on your own with that last one.

So against all odds, in spite of all the websites promising how easy it is to start a blog but really wanting me to pay them; in spite of trying out about 100 styles before finding one that basically works; and in spite of having no idea about how to use Widgets to share my blog on Facebook or email, I’ve started.  Hope you’ll come along and bring some friends.

In chess I can’t think more than a move or two ahead, but watch for my next post:  “Don’t Make This Moosetake.”  You’re human, odds are you are.

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Fun Fact:  The natural enemies of moose are bears, wolves, cougars, Siberian tigers and — though hard to believe — killer whales.  You call that fun?  I’ll tell you what’s terrifying:  chocolate moose!  Nobody wants to end up like that!!