Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Stacking logs

I have known for some time that some fats are better for us than others, but to be honest, I always believed that a diet low in every type of fat was better for health in the long run. I re read Dr Verburgh's explanation of why unsaturated fat is less of a threat to cardiovascular health. Apparently it's all to do with the way the atoms bond. Saturated and trans fats do not have kinks in their bonds and can nestle up to each other inside our artery walls. They are less likely to be dislodged and can therefore narrow the arteries in a way that can lead to heart attacks or a stroke. It's a bit like piling up logs in a woodpile. Saturated fats give a well constructed deposit inside the artery wall. The unsaturated fat bonds have kinks in them, so they are more difficult to stack up. It's like trying to make a neat wood pile with kinked logs. It's unstable and the logs will easily destabilise. Any accumulation soon disperses and our arteries are soon cleared. Good fats which do not tend to clog our arteries include olive oil, oily fish, walnuts and flax oil (linseed). Omega 3 oils decrease inflammation in the body, which I now know is a good thing.

Incidentally , I have had problems with my Achilles' tendons for around three years. Every morning I have got used to a ten minute slow shuffle until they flex enough for me to walk about unhampered. Running, which I used to enjoy, is now not possible as the Achilles hurt too much and even going on long walks can be a problem. Since I have been drinking ginger tea every morning the problem with my Achilles has improved dramatically. I now get out of bed without a twinge and I can go on long walks with little or no difficulty. If I touch my Achilles they are still sore, but the improvement has been so sudden I can't help thinking it must be down to the anti inflammatory powers of ginger!

I found a recipe for rye sourdough and have begun my rye starter which needs to be fed for a few days before I make the bread. I was and to be honest still am a little concerned about ergot. This is a fungus that grows on rye grains and causes hallucinations. I don't  think breeding yeast in a sourdough starter is any risk, having now read up about it. If anyone else has any info I would be glad to hear it.

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