Fake Honey

The price difference between corn or rice syrup and honey is big enough that it has attracted fraud. We have heard about this fraud for some time. Recently, we found the evidence that it is actually happening. The website of a manufacturing company in India that produces honey grade invert syrup says this: “Honey grade invert sugar syrup is widely used in honey processing and food processing industry. Chemically, honey is equivalent to invert sugar. It is often mixed with regular honey during packaging… Honey grade invert syrup has similar character to honey… Manufacturers often mix Honey Invert sugar with natural bee honey to keep up with the demand.” http://www.invertsugarsyrup.com/honey.php

Another manufacture of honey grade invert sugar states: “Honey Grade Invert Sugar Syrup offered by is extensively used in food processing and honey processing industry. Chemically, honey is equal to invert sugar and is often mixed with regular honey during packaging. This invert syrup has similar quality to honey…”http://www.tasteagro.com/honey-grade-invert-syrup.html

And a third website states this: “Invert sugar is a golden yellow coloured viscous liquid consisting of equimolecular mixture of glucose and fructose. Being 25% sweeter than regular sugar, this is generally applied as sweetener in food and pharmaceutical industries. This is often known as artificial honey for its composition being nearly the same as real honey… Honey-industry: Because of similar physical and chemical properties like that of natural honey, invert sugars can be mixed with honey for obtaining better texture and flavour. Sometimes, it is also used for bee feeding.” http://feedgradericeprotein.com/invert_syrup.html

Now we know why there has not been a shortage of honey in grocery stores even though honey bees have been dying all across America. Packers are mixing invert sugar, costing only about thirty cents a pound, with honey. The unsuspecting American consumer has been deceived and sold a fraudulent honey diluted with inverted sugar (likely GMO). http://www.gmo-compass.org/eng/database/ingredients/130.invert_sugar_syrup.html

Eating on the Road

One of the difficulties we face, once we start eating good food, is what to do when we leave the comfort of our homes and don’t have access to our kitchens. After you hear about the effects of eating “store-bought” food and find yourself not feeling good when you eat out, McDonald’s just doesn’t seem so attractive anymore!

Last March, I took a trip out to Chicago for a health seminar. I had recently found out about the effects of glyphosate, and the prospect of eating low-quality food for a whole weekend did not appeal to me. I was flying, so I couldn’t take a cooler. I decided to try to pack four days’ worth of food in my suitcase and make all my own meals! Here’s what I took:


Grilled chicken breasts
Breaded beef sandwich steaks
1 dozen hardboiled eggs
Two heads of lettuce
A six-pack of yogurt
Two loaves of homemade bread
Mayonnaise
Sliced cheese
1 lb Heavenly Honey
Peanut butter
Butter
Homemade cookies
Small brown paper bags

You may be amazed that I was able to pack all that in my suitcase and still have room for my clothes. As I list it out here, I am amazed as well! After packing everything I wanted to take, I set the suitcase on the bathroom scales. It weighed 49 pounds–almost over the limit! I took out a few items and got the weight down to 47.5 pounds. Ready to go!

My room at the hotel had a small fridge, so when I arrived, I put the perishable items in the fridge and walked down the street to the nearby Jewel grocery store. I was happy to find that they had a selection of organic food–I wouldn’t have had to pack so much! Oh, well. I bought a bag of baby carrots, a bag of tortilla chips, and some distilled water. I was all set.


Yogurt made an excellent breakfast, along with a hardboiled egg and whatever else I decided to throw in–maybe a peanut butter and honey sandwich. After breakfast, I would spread out my sandwich fixings on the vanity and prepare lunch, which I took along to class.

Back in the hotel in the evening, I made supper. This could be another sandwich, or a salad with chicken breast if I so preferred.


This worked out well for me. I had nutritious, organic food, much of which was homemade. I didn’t have the luxury of hot meals, but that was a small price to pay for eating real food!

Six months later, Dad took us guys on a Dad-and-the-boys trip to Colonial Williamsburg. This time, we were only gone for two days, and we drove to Williamsburg, so we were able to take a cooler and an electric skillet. We had cereal for breakfast, made sandwiches for lunch, and heated up food in the skillet for supper. It worked very well. The hardest part was washing up the skillet in the bathroom sink!

For an extended trip, one strategy is to find health food stores along your route, and “re-stock” as necessary. You may not even need to take much along. You may also be able to find some healthy restaurants to eat at as well.

You don’t have to resort to eating “garbage” whenever you take a trip. With a little planning, preparation and extra baggage, you can eat nutritious food wherever you go.

The Importance of Recycling Energy, Part 2: How to sequester carbon in the soil

This is a continuation of Part 1 in the September Jehovah-Jireh Farm Newsletter on the importance of recycling energy.

Note: Using organic farming methods to sequester carbon in the soil is an important subject that was presented to our government officials several weeks ago. Since I wrote part one, I found out that Mark Smallwood, the director of Rodale Institute, walked from Rodale Institute in Pennsylvania to Washington D.C. to hand deliver a White Paper detailing research proving that regenerative organic agriculture can absorb carbon from the atmosphere and reverse climate change. The White Paper is titled: Regenerative Organic Agriculture and Climate Change, A down-to-earth solution to global warming. The full text of the White Paper can be found at: http://rodaleinstitute.org/regenerative-organic-agriculture-and-climate-change/
Incidentally, Mark Smallwood used to work for MOM’S Organic Market in their main office in Rockville, MD. and also helped us one time to process chickens at our old farm.

 

We today have an important opportunity to make a significant step forward to sequester carbon, build topsoil, control erosion, and feed the world through organic farming. There are many that are greatly concerned that we have irreparably harmed the environment, are destroying life, and leaving future generations with an environmental mess because our excessive use of fossil fuels. Many feel hopeless and that too many people do not care what they are doing to the environment.

There is hope!

Plants to a large extent were the original source of our present day fossil fuels. Plants are also a key element in recycling energy and putting the CO2 gasses back into the soil where they belong.

There are a number of ways to sequester carbon in the soil. What I want to share with you is a simple, easy method that we have used here at Jehovah-Jireh Farm.

In the first seven years here on this farm we have sequestered approximately 325,570 lbs of Soil Organic Carbon on 35 acres. That represents recycling as much CO2 as the yearly output from approximately 146 cars. That was accomplished by increasing the soil organic matter on most of the farmland by almost one percentage point. That is without spreading organic matter or fertilizers other than lime. The only manure was the droppings from chickens when they are on the pasture and from the sheep and cows while they are grazing. The amount of  carbon sequestered is according to soil tests that were taken at the end of 2013. It represents the carbon sequestered in the top six inches of soil, although there has been much more carbon than that sequestered at greater depths in the soil. 

The method that we used to sequester the carbon was letting the grass grow a foot or more tall and then grazing or mowing the grass and letting it decompose into the soil. This is a method that we discovered as we mowed the grass in the American chestnut orchard located here on the farm and observed the significant increased growth of the grass and the increased growth, vigor, health, and blight resistance of the American chestnut trees. Mowing pasture grasses is one of the best, the easiest, and cheapest of fertilizers.

Grasses often have more root mass and depth than the mass and height of grass above the ground. When the grass is mowed from a height of 24″ down to 4″, the roots slough off to correspond to the amount of grass left above the surface. As these roots that sloughed off decompose, they build organic matter in the soil to the depth the roots had been. It is not just the organic matter on the surface of the ground from the mowed grass that contributes to the organic matter of the soil.

Pasture based farming, using rotational grazing and managed mowing, is an important method of sequestering carbon in the soil in a very stable manner. Rodale Institute has proved that the proper organic crop growing methods are also an important carbon sequestering method. It is my opinion from my observations and research that pastures can sequester carbon faster, easier, to a greater depth, and have it more stable in the soil than can be accomplished with organic crop farming methods. That does not mean that sequestering carbon by organic crop farming methods is unimportant; it is important. But what it means is that globally we can sequester much more carbon by raising animals on pasture in pasture based systems rather than growing grain and feeding the animals grain in confinement operations. Plus, the grass-fed meats with higher omega-3 fatty acids are much more healthy for the consumer.  

Typical response of grasses to grazing. Above ground growth is more lateral and roots “die back” to match needs of above ground biomass. Diagram C. Luke 2011 http://www.sonoma.edu/preserves/prairie/management/restoration.shtml

 


http://kansasgraziers.blogspot.com/2013_10_01_archive.html
Up to 90% of a plant’s mass is in its root system. What is below the soil is much more important for sequestering carbon than what is above the soil. The plant on the far right has much more root mass than the mass that is in the grass above the soil level. The grass clump on the far left sloughed off most of its roots when it was cut short. The roots can then decompose and build carbon deep in the soil where it will be stable and stay in the soil for a very long time.

The above illustrations show the importance of managing plant roots by grazing and mowing to build carbon in the soil. The roots below the soil are more important for sequestering carbon than the grasses above the soil. This is significant, because it allows us to utilize the grass for feeding livestock and producing an income from the land while at the same time using the roots to sequester carbon deep in the soil, making the soil more drought resistant, reducing rain run off and erosion, and making the soil more fertile.

The depth that carbon is sequestered in the soil is important. Carbon that is greater than 12″ deep (30cm) is very stable in the soil. The Rodale Institute’s White Paper points out the importance of depth in the sequestering of carbon:
“It is likely that current data sets underestimate soil organic carbon stocks in organically managed systems because soil carbon is often measured at plow depth when recent findings suggest that more than half of the soil organic carbon stocks are likely in the 20-80cm depth. Beyond 30cm in the soil profile, the age of carbon increases continuously, much of it persisting for thousands of years.  How carbon acts in this subsoil range is poorly understood, but increasing rooting depth, application of irrigated compost (compost tea), choosing deep rooted grass-legume cover crops and encouraging earthworm abundance are all promising pathways for introducing carbon to depths where it is likely to remain stable over long periods.” (p. 10)

To get the greatest depth of roots in the soil, it is important that grasses be allowed to grow at least a foot or two in height before grazing or mowing. Grasses in home lawns will not be able to contribute much to carbon sequestering because they are never allowed to grow very tall.

One more plus to mowing pastures in addition to sequestering carbon is that it creates a beautiful manicured farm landscape. Beautiful pastoral farm landscapes do a soul good like a medicine. We need to create more beauty around us.
Our charcoal/biochar kiln experiment at Jehovah-Jireh Farm.

In 2009 we experimented with making charcoal to sequester carbon and to build up our soils. Inside this charcoal kiln were five metal 55 gallon barrels filled with split firewood. We made six batches of charcoal to use in the garden and in the chicken bedding. Making charcoal/biochar is labor intensive. In half of our garden, we applied about an inch and a half of charcoal and incorporated it in the top six inches of soil in a three foot wide by 70 feet strip perpendicular across the various rows of vegetables . Unfortunately, we did not see any improvement in growth, drought resistance, or brix improvement to the plants grown in the charcoal enriched soil in any of the years since then. Five years later, there is no noticeable difference in the color of the soil where the charcoal was applied.

Our experiment with biochar was not successful. It does not mean that charcoal/biochar is an ineffective method of sequestering carbon in the soil. The Terra Preta soils in South America show otherwise. Charcoal/biochar is a method that needs more research. 

There is much more to learn about how to sequester carbon and to build topsoil using atmospheric carbon. We want to experiment with increasing the brix (sugar content) of our pasture grasses. By increasing the photosynthesis of the plant leaves, the sugar (and carbon) content of the plant can be increased. The plant sends these sugars to the roots to feed the roots and microbes in the soil. By increasing the sugars in the plant, we should be able to significantly increase the carbon sequestration in the soil.

There is much more that we would like to experiment with to improve the soil. We thank you for your support of our farm in buying our farm products. Your support is what enables us to do these experiments in our living laboratory (the farm).

What Gives Our Chicken and Turkey Meats Superior Flavor

We hear many compliments about our chicken and turkey meats. But the one that we hear the most is how good they taste. We all know that chickens and turkeys raised on pasture taste better than conventionally raised poultry raised in large chicken houses. The grass and other plants in the pasture are an important part of the flavor, but it was not until this past month that I found out something else that we are doing that significantly contributes to the flavor and health benefits of our chicken that is different than most other pasture-raised chickens.

Last month, Cathy and I and some of our children had the privilege of attending the Mother Earth News Fair at the Seven Springs Resort in Pennsylvania. One of the seminars that I attended was given by a professional butcher who understood the importance of grassfed meats and the science behind it. One of the things that he said was that muscles that have more activity are the meats that have the most flavor. Muscles that have had very little activity, such as beef tenderloin, are the most tender but also have the least amount of flavor.

He said that fat is what gives meat flavor. Muscles that are exercised more have small amounts of fat dispersed throughout the meat because the muscles need the fat stores for energy as they work. It is those small deposits of fat that gives those meats more flavor. Here in America, people have prized tender meats over flavorful meat. Tender meats are achieved by confinement rearing that limits the exercise of the animal or poultry. The result is that conventionally produced chicken, beef and other meats are usually lacking in flavor.

The thing that we are doing that is different than most pastured poultry producers that we allow our chickens to run. Most pastured poultry producers use the “Salatin pull pen” or “chicken tractor” method. It is a method in which 50 to 75 chickens are placed in a small 10 foot by 12 foot bottomless pen on pasture. The chickens probably get less exercise than what chickens do that are raised in large chicken houses because they are limited by the small confining space. I say that from my observations from working on a large confinement poultry operation when I was in college and from when we tried the “pull pen” method. In the large chicken houses, because they are not confined to a small 10′ by 12′ area, the meat birds can move about more.

Not only does the exercise give our chickens more flavor, but the fat that gives it flavor is a good fat. The fat is in a meat that has been able to get omega-3’s from the grass and store those omega-3’s in the fat. The exercise gives the chicken meat a more firm texture, but it is still tender and a good eating experience.

One of the keys to flavorful meats is animals that have been able to get plenty of exercise. In buying meat, ask the farmer how they raise the meat. Unfortunately, there is a growing trend among grassfed producers to move toward confinement on pasture such as mob grazing of beef. In mob grazing, a large number of animals are confined in a small paddock, such as 1/4 acre, on the pasture until all the grass is eaten or trampled into the ground. They are then moved to another small paddock. The cattle are moved three or more times a day, but they are confined in a small space 24/7. Mob grazing is supposed to do great things for the soil, but in my opinion, it is not humane to the animals.


Mob grazing 1000 head of cattle. There is approximately 1.2 million pounds of weight in cattle grazing this strip. http://mobgrazing.blogspot.com/2011_08_01_archive.html
Not all mob grazing is this intensive but the animals do have to be bunched in a “mob” with the equivalent of  200,000 plus pounds of animals per acre so that they consume most of the grass in a short period of time.

The Importance of Recycling Energy, Part 1: The answer to feeding a growing world population

What you are about to read is a different perspective than what you normally hear about our use of fossil fuels. We have within our reach the ability to solve many of the environmental problems that we face today with the use of “non-renewable” energy sources — crude oil, natural gas, and coal. We get the impression from many scientists that our use of fossil fuels that we are removing from the earth is polluting our environment with unnatural toxins that should not be there and that we are creating a big environmental problem with greenhouse gases. But their field of view is too narrow and pessimistic. We have the opportunity of recycling fossil fuel energy back to it original form. In the process, not only can we solve many of these environmental problems, but we can significantly increase food production to feed a growing world population using organic methods. Chemical farming and GMO’s are not the answer for increasing food production to feed the world.

To see the solution, it is necessary to see the bigger picture of what fossil fuel energy really is and how it can be recycled. Fossil fuels are formed from the remains of dead plants and animals that were buried many years ago. In Pennsylvania, layers of coal can range from a few inches to 10 or 12 feet thick. To make coal or oil, plant and animal matter is highly compressed. Now try to imagine how many plants it would take to make a layer of coal that was only one foot thick.  What those layers of coal and oil tell us is that many years ago the soil was highly productive and produced vast amounts of vegetation that in some locations was likely much greater than anything we have seen in modern times.

In physics, The Law of Conservation of Energy states that energy cannot be created or destroyed, but it can change form. Energy is said to be conserved over time. In the case of fossil fuels, when they are burned the energy is not destroyed but rather changes form. A significant portion becomes carbon dioxide. But before we go further, we need to back up and look at where fossil fuels came from in the first place and look at the carbon cycle. First,  in very ancient times there was very fertile topsoil that was rich in carbon. That very fertile soil produced vast amounts of plant matter. The plant matter was buried and over many years was converted into fossil fuels. Today, fossil fuels are being removed from the earth and burned and vast amounts of carbon dioxide are being put into the air. What we need to do is to capture that ancient topsoil that is now floating in the air as carbon dioxide and put it back into our topsoil. If we can accomplish that we have the potential to significantly increase food production.

The bottom line is: gasoline came from topsoil, we burned it in our car and put the “topsoil” in the air. It is interesting that many of the oil rich countries, such as Iraq and Saudi Arabia, are largely desert countries. Their topsoil is buried way below the surface in the form of oil. (It is interesting to note that the Garden of Eden, with its lush vegetation, would have been in their general area.) They are pumping their topsoil out of the ground as oil and selling their topsoil to us to burn in our cars. We are burning their topsoil and using the energy for transportation. In the process we have put their topsoil into the air where it is polluting the environment. Our responsibility and opportunity now is to recycle the topsoil out of the air and put it back in the topsoil where it belongs.

Why it is important to recycle energy back into our topsoil
Why is it important that we recycle carbon out of the atmosphere and put it in the soil? We have a great opportunity to restore soil productivity back to the way it was right before fossil fuels were formed. The carbon dioxide in the air is an important resource that we need to utilize.

The main difference between topsoil and subsoil is the carbon content in the topsoil. The carbon content is usually referred  to as organic matter. By increasing the carbon content of our soils we can increase the depth of the topsoil and make the soil much more productive. Dr. Carey Reams used to say that if he knew how deep the top soil was, he could tell you what the production would be. Research at Michigan State University indicates that a 1 percent increase in organic matter offers a 12 percent increase in crop production potential. (http://www.nrcs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DOCUMENTS/stelprdb1083169.pdf)

Adding carbon to the soil helps make the soil more drought proof. Carbon is like a sponge and can hold about four times its weight in water. Therefore increasing the carbon content of the soil enables the soil to hold water for an extended time after it rains and makes more water available to the plants. High carbon soil can also absorb moisture from the air during times of high humidity, increasing the water available to the plants even though it doesn’t rain.

Carbon in the topsoil makes it more porous so that when it rains the water soaks into the soil and does not run off as quickly. That is important for keeping the water where the plants can use it, but it also is very important in reducing topsoil erosion and flooding. This summer here on the farm we had an inch of rain in less than a half hour. I went to a place where we have often had water running off the pasture in the past. This time there was no run off. The soil had absorbed the entire inch of rain. That was a satisfying result of the work we have done in increasing the soil carbon content of our soils.

Carbon also provides a “hotel” for the microbes and bacteria in the soil. Those microbes and bacteria in the soil are important for making nutrients and minerals available to the plants and converting decayed plant matter into soil carbon.

It is important that we complete the carbon cycle and put the “topsoil” that we burn in our cars back into the soil where it belongs. The real answer to feeding a growing world is in organic farming that sequesters carbon and builds topsoil.

To be continued.

Food Shortage – “It Will NEVER Happen” But if it does, are you ready?

Since I wrote our last newsletter, I attended three different grocery store auctions where the stores closed and they could not find a buyer for the store. The first auction was the grocery store that we went to often when we lived at our old farm before we started eating almost exclusively organic. It was a large store, Selby’s Grocery in Poolesville, Md. I was looking for a large meat grinder for making pet food and I was able to buy it for an incredible price at the second grocery store auction (the store pictured above). One guy accused me of stealing it, it was so cheap.

The prices kept dropping with each auction. By the third grocery store auction, there were only about ten people buying. Most of the freezers, refrigerated cases, and store shelving in that store were sold for scrap because no one had a use for them. Being in a grocery store that couldn’t make it, with only a hand full of bidders, and prices way below where they should have been, had a profound affect on everyone there. It is hard to describe in words.

There are a number of events that are happening that I think are important that we keep in mind as we plan for the rest of the year and the next several years. There is a good possibility that nothing significant will happen and things will continue as they have been. But there also exists a very real possibility of significant food shortages.

One event that could cause a significant food shortage is the drought in California. Statewide, the drought is getting worse. The drought could end at any time, but some scientists are saying that it is likely going to be a prolonged drought. A prolonged drought would have a significant impact on our food supply. According to the California Department of Agriculture website, California produces nearly half of US-grown fruits, nuts and vegetables. http://www.cdfa.ca.gov/statistics/
California produces (as a percentage of all US production for each food item):
Almonds 99%
Apricots 88%
Strawberries 91%
Peaches 73%
Plums 97%
Walnuts 99%
Broccoli 65%
Fresh carrots 81%
Cauliflower 86%
Lettuce 75%
Processing tomatoes 96%
Plus significant quantities of other fruits and vegetables.
http://www.ers.usda.gov/topics/in-the-news/california-drought-2014-farm-and-food-impacts/california-drought-2014-crop-sectors.aspx

Another thing that could cause food shortages is high inflation. Massive amounts of money have been created in recent years without much apparent inflation. Exporting money out of our country has helped keep inflation down. The US dollar is the world reserve currency and it is used by many countries to to buy and sell with other countries. However, in the last month or so, Russia, China, India, France, and others have agreed together to stop using the US dollar for trading between their countries. A significant part of the world ceasing to use the US dollar for trade has the potential to cause higher inflation (not necessarily hyperinflation) here in our country.

High inflation often results in the government imposing price controls on certain items such as food to keep prices from rising. What usually happens then is that those items disappear from store shelves because they cost more to produce than what they can sell for. Just last month, this very thing happened in Panama, which uses the US dollar for their currency. The Panama Post reported July 21:
“During the last couple of weeks, Panama — with expected annual economic growth of 7 percent this year — has faced what hardline socialist nations such as Cuba and Venezuela experience every day: food shortages. As many experts warned, and only 15 days after newly elected President Juan Carlos Varela announced the price-control law, the empty shelves are everywhere.” http://panampost.com/marcela-estrada/2014/07/21/econ-101-for-panama-new-price-controls-bring-rampant-shortages/

Food shortages can also occur when there is high inflation, even if there are not price controls. Items with a very low profit margin such as rice, eggs, chicken, produce, and other basic food items tend to disappear from the stores because there is not enough profit margin to cover the losses from inflation. Costs continue to rise for the producer or manufacturer.

Another event that could cause significant food shortages is Walmart going out of business. The first thought of many is that Walmart will never go out of business. But if we have high inflation, it could potentially put Walmart under. Walmart has put many smaller grocery stores out of business in recent years, such as Selby’s Grocery in Poolesville, as they have expanded their grocery departments. Grocery sales now amount for 55% of all of Walmart’s sales. Forbes magazine reports that Walmart now has 25% of the US grocery store sales. http://www.forbes.com/sites/greatspeculations/2013/05/20/wal-mart-cleans-up-on-poor-america-with-25-of-u-s-grocery-sales/

Walmart’s business model has worked very well for them during periods of low inflation and low interest rates. However, Walmart is currently facing a difficult retail environment. Their same store sales have declined in each of the last five quarters. Their CEO recently stepped down and a new CEO was appointed. Walmart does not have much inventory in warehouses, but buys most of their products just as they need them. Their trucks on the road making deliveries are a significant part of their “warehouse” inventory. Low inventory, coupled with very small profit margins, could be a recipe for disaster for Walmart if high inflation and high interest rates occurred. In other countries that had high inflation, many businesses were able to keep going by using their stockpiled inventory as a hedge against inflation.

What should we do to have food if there is a food shortage?
Don’t become a paranoid “prepper” that has a year or more of freeze dried food stashed around the house. But I do think it would be wise to not have the current “Walmart inventory mentality” in which you have less than six days of food on hand and need to run to the grocery store several times a week for food. Having a month or two worth of food on hand would give you a nice cushion. There is a certain satisfaction knowing that you have food on hand at all times and that you don’t have to run to the store to stock up every time they are calling for a snow storm.

A freezer is a good investment. It is a simple, easy way to stock up on food without it going bad. It is also a way to save money even if there is never a food shortage. For example, you could buy larger quantities of chickens from us at a time and only come to the farm several times a year rather than every month. The savings on trips to our farm and to the store could add up quickly. With a freezer you can also save significant amounts of money by buying in larger quantities and stocking up on items when they are on sale or when you find them at a really good price.

Historically, price controls are put on items sold by large corporations. If that were to happen here, knowing local farmers, such as our farm, could also be an important source of food. We will do all we can to be here for you. Hopefully there will NEVER be a food shortage, but if there is, be ready.

Too Much Recycling

With the heat of summer and trying to stay cool, be careful about too much recycling—recycling your most important food, the air you breathe. Air is our most important food, because without it, we will only live a few minutes. The utility companies, with a singular focus on energy conservation, have been encouraging us to seal up our houses tighter and tighter so that no air will pass through the windows, doors, or other places. They are focusing on energy consumption and not on people’s health needs. The end result is that many people are recycling their air and breathing their own exhaust this summer as they try to stay comfortable in their sealed insulted refrigerator houses and offices.

Carey Reams taught that 80% of the energy that we as human beings need for health and bodily function comes from the air. Only 20% comes from the food we eat. I have not been able to verify that 80% is an accurate figure, but in my research, I have found that it is true that we get significantly more energy from the air than from our food. For example, a person who burns 2000 calories a day in exercise will consume about 2000 calories of food. However, not all of those calories consumed are used by the body. Some of the calories are excreted in the urine and bowels. Therefore, there is more energy being used by the body than is coming from the food. In addition, the human body is putting off infrared light. One person estimated that it took about 2000 calories to produce that infrared light and heat. Those calories had to come from somewhere other than the food.

It is easy to forget about the importance of pure “organic” (chemical free) high quality air for our health because we can’t see air and air is free. In a sealed-up, air conditioned building, there is not only a depletion of oxygen, but there are also chemicals trapped inside. There are chemicals in the air from the carpet, the furniture, the glues in plywood and particle board, the paint, and many other sources. These chemicals are toxic to our bodies. 

One disease in particular, cancer, thrives in an environment where there is little or no oxygen. One of the best defenses against cancer is oxygen.

Our family’s solution
Our family has chosen not to have air conditioning. The heat outside does not seem as hot when we don’t have air conditioning as when we live in air conditioning and then go outside into the heat and the heat hits us in the face. One of the advantages, too, of an older home like ours is that there are fewer chemicals in the materials it is constructed with.

We also sing together in the morning as a family about four times a week. Singing develops the lungs and makes the lungs more efficient in absorbing oxygen.


This picture was in the March 2013 newsletter in the article: “Crazy Farmers Eat Two Breakfasts”. A keyboard, because it is always in tune, is better to sing with than a piano unless the piano is diligently kept in tune. For Christmas I bought Cathy a new Yamaha keyboard that has a much clearer sound than this Casio keyboard. We have been amazed at the difference the clarity of sound from the Yamaha keyboard has made on our singing in the last six months. It has enabled us to tune our voices closer to each other and to make a more tight and beautiful blend of our voices.

We also use hydrogen peroxide in our swimming pool. Swimming in the pool is like an oxygen therapy bath. It cleans the skin and is refreshing. The hydrogen peroxide keeps the water in the pool sparkling clean without chlorine.

Recycling is good and is important unless it is recycling your breath exhaust. Then it is too much recycling! Have a healthful and oxygen filled summer.

For more on the importance of air, read the following two newsletter articles:

Crazy Farmers Eat Two Breakfasts
http://www.jehovahjirehfarm.com/articles/2013/03/07/crazy-farmers-eat-two-breakfasts/

Trying to Stay Healthy Wrapped in Plastic and Living in a Sealed Insulated Box, Starving Ourselves from a Food We Can’t See
http://www.jehovahjirehfarm.com/articles/2010/11/19/trying-to-stay-healthy-wrapped-in-plastic-and-living-in-a-sealed-insulated-box-starving-ourselves-from-a-food-we-cant-see/