Thursday, April 19, 2018

Mormons, Take a Closer Look at Your Church!


Former sister missionary speaks on lawsuit against LDS church over rape allegations
Tech View
Published on Apr 5, 2018

Betrayal At The MTC? The Spirit of Discernment
Thinker Of Thoughts
Streamed live on Mar 23, 2018

Criticism in the Church - From Oaks to Eyring
Thinker Of Thoughts
Published on Mar 14, 2018

Sister Bednar - Staying Humble
Thinker Of Thoughts
Published on Nov 20, 2017
In this Q&A session Elder Bednar was asked to give input on how to stay humble and depend on the Lord and specifically asked for an example from his life of how he dealt with being humble.

LDS CES History

Lynn Kenneth Packer
Published on Jun 29, 2016

Mormon Fraud

Published on Jun 16, 2016

7 False Prophecies from Joseph Smith - Mormons
Jesus Truth
Published on Nov 20, 2015

"The Book of Mormon" (Full Documentary)

Published on Aug 24, 2015

Ida Smith Excommunicated - Reading The Sealed Portion
Marvelous Work and a Wonder
Published on Oct 20, 2013

Exposing the Myth of Mormon Families Forever
Aaron Shafovaloff
Published on Jun 17, 2012
Hundreds march to demand LDS Church end ‘worthiness interviews’ with children
By Ben Winslow
Posted: March 30, 2018
An image from SkyFOX showing hundreds marching through downtown Salt Lake City to protest the LDS Church's practice of "Bishop's worthiness interviews." (Mark Johnson, FOX 13 News)
SALT LAKE CITY — Hundreds marched through downtown Salt Lake City to demand The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints end the practice of one-on-one interviews with youth.
Police estimated more than 800 marched up State Street from the Salt Lake City & County Building to Temple Square on Friday afternoon. Organizers then presented LDS Church officials with a 55,000 signature petition calling for an end to "bishop's worthiness interviews."
"My son is dead because the church will not address this!" said Brian Bresee, who claimed his son committed suicide in the aftermath of one such bishop's interview.
The group Protect LDS Children, which organized Friday's march, said LDS ward bishops have conducted the one-on-one interviews behind closed doors to determine a child's worthiness within the faith to enter into temples or participate in some church services. Some questions have gone beyond simple questions of faith to deeply personal inquisitions about sexuality.
Some have alleged it led to them being abused.
"Let the millstone not be hung around your neck. Don’t let what happened to me happen to children for generations to come," said Robin Day, who asked LDS church representatives to deliver to the church's First Presidency a book of personal stories of people who said they have been harmed by bishop's worthiness interviews.
Irene Caso, a representative of the LDS Church's Public Affairs Office, accepts a petition calling for an end to "bishop's worthiness interviews." (Photo by Ben Winslow, FOX 13 News)
"I'm story No. 489," said Val Christensen as he handed off a book of personal accounts. "I lived this."
The march comes as the LDS Church has faced a sex abuse scandal at its Provo Missionary Training Center. A woman has alleged she was raped by a former MTC president, and the church has said it is looking into whether there is a second potential victim. The LDS Church recently announced some changes to its bishop's interview practices, including allowing another person to be in the room.
LDS sex abuse scandal: Here’s what we know so far
By Jana Riess
March 26, 2018
Two LDS sister missionaries enjoy the fresh air while they study at the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah. ©2017 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved.
Last week, the LDS Church was rocked by an unfolding sex abuse scandal that involved allegations by at least one former missionary against Joseph L. Bishop, the president of the Provo Missionary Training Center in the mid-1980s.
Just to recap, here’s a day-by-day overview of what has come to light:
Monday, March 19: MormonLeaks posts an audio and transcript (without full permission to do so) that seems to show Bishop admitting that he molested a female missionary [Victim 2] during his tenure at the MTC.
The tape, recorded in early December 2017, is of him being confronted by another former sister missionary [Victim 1] who claims he tried to rape her in a basement room of the MTC, a charge he denies. He does, however, admit on the tape that he has a sexual addiction he has struggled with his whole adult life.
Tuesday, March 20: The firestorm begins. RNS posts its initial coverage based on the content of the audio and transcript. The LDS Church issues a statement that it investigated Victim 1’s claims in 2010 and found no evidence for them, and strongly suggests (but does not state outright) that the claims are false.
Joseph Bishop’s son releases documents to the media to contend that Victim 1 has a colorful police history, further casting doubt on her story.
Wednesday, March 21: The BYU police department releases an unredacted report from December 2017, written just a few days after Victim 1 had confronted Bishop and secretly recorded their conversation. The 
Salt Lake Tribune breaks the story that according to what Bishop admitted to the BYU police, several of Victim 1’s accusations appear to be true: Bishop did lead her downstairs at the MTC to a private room, where he asked her to expose her breasts to him.
The county attorney says that from this evidence, he would have prosecuted Bishop, but the statute of limitations had long since expired by the time this came to his attention in 2017.
Thursday, March 22: An LDS bishop who served from 1979 to 1985 affirms that Victim 1 told him in 1984, when he was her bishop, that the MTC president had led her and another female missionary [presumably Victim 2] down to the basement of the MTC and showed them pornography. The local bishop did not give this allegation any credence at the time, he told KUTV, because he “wasn’t going to risk sullying the reputation of someone based on that kind of a report.”
In a separate story, KUTV also reveals that a former employee who worked at the MTC in the early 1980s confirms that the basement room in question did have a bed, a TV, and a VCR, details that were integral to Victim 1’s allegations but were denied by Joseph Bishop.
Friday, March 23: The LDS Church releases a more strongly worded statement, calling sexual abuse “repulsive and sinful” and noting that it is now investigating a second charge against Bishop. Victim 2, it says, received counseling and support from her local LDS leaders in 2010 when she apparently again reported the abuse.
It would seem that Victim 2 reported her abuse in 1984 and in 2010, at least, while Victim 1 reported hers in the mid-1980s, in 2010, and again in 2017. The Church apparently investigated each missionary’s account (though the exact meaning or extent of “investigation” is unclear), and decided not to discipline Bishop.
Saturday, March 24: Victim 1 issues a statement via MormonLeaks to say that even though the original audio was released without her permission, she harbors no ill feelings toward MormonLeaks for moving forward without her consent. She states that she will be filing a lawsuit against the LDS Church, at which time her identity will become part of the public record, and that she looks forward to “sharing more of the story in the coming weeks.”
Meanwhile, her attorney says he believes it is likely there is a third victim.
Sunday, March 25: A day of rest. No new public revelations.
It remains unclear whether these specific charges or the general subject of sexual abuse will be addressed in any capacity at the Church’s worldwide General Conference, which occurs this weekend, March 31 and April 1.
It will be the first Conference under the new leadership of LDS President Russell M. Nelson, who took the reins in January after the death of President Thomas S. Monson.
Rumors have been proliferating on social media that this Conference will feature some kind of interesting change or new revelation that has been received by President Nelson. It would seem, however, that whatever positive change the Church has looked forward to announcing may be overshadowed by this dark story of sexual abuse.
Correction: An earlier version of this story confused the Thursday revelations about the singles ward bishop and a victim. It should be Victim 1, not Victim 2. The error has been corrected.
Related stories:
Thomas S Monson Net Worth: Mormon Church President Had No Salary
By Gayathri Anuradha
The president of the Church of Latter Day Saint, Thomas S. Monson died on Jan.2, 2017 aged 90. Above, Monson waves as he leaves the morning session of the 186th Annual General Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints on April 2, 2016, in Salt Lake City, Utah.  Photo: Getty Images/George Frey 
The president of the Church of Latter-day Saints, Thomas S. Monson died Tuesday aged 90, according to a statement by the church.
The top Mormon leader died of "causes related to his age," while he was with his family, the statement said.
Monson who was also a prophet of the church, had one of the "full-time religious positions available to Mormons," according to his website. Despite a full-time service, Monson and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, the top leaders of the church did not receive any salaries. This was due to fears of priestcraft — the ability to become wealthy doing the work of the church, the website said.
"While most religions pay their ministers and many leaders of popular churches become wealthy, a Mormon leader can only achieve wealth prior to his call to full-time service. No matter how much money the Church makes, leaders do not personally profit from that money," it stated.
The Salt Lake Tribune, however, reported the purported pay stubs for a high-ranking church Mormon official as seen from documents that had leaked online that stated Henry B. Eyring, a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles during the 2000s, earned $83,132.75 from the start of 2000 until the first week of December. The figure was broken down into a living allowance ($2,192.31), parsonage or clergy housing, ($826.92) and a child allowance ($76.92).
In 2014, another memo was leaked, which said the "base living allowance" for all Mormon general authorities was being raised from $116,400 to $120,000. Other additional income or perks including heath care benefits, free cars or book royalties were unclear.
At the time, LDS Church spokesman Eric Hawkins declined to confirm the numbers and said: "General authorities leave their careers when they are called into full-time church service. When they do so, they focus all of their time on serving the church and are given a living allowance. The living allowance is uniform for all general authorities [including First Presidency, Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, First and Second Quorums of the Seventy and Presiding Bishopric]."
Monson's website added that those in the higher positions could not hold outside employment, although had sources of private income. The Net Worth Post estimated Monson’s net worth as $14 million.
According to the Mormon Curtain, a blog that claims to provide aid to former Mormons "who are on the road to recovery," and informs Mormons who are looking for more information on their own religion, the prophet and his apostles were given living arrangements and lived in a 24000-plus square foot condo estimated at a value of $2.8 million. Another blog, Mormon Insider, said he and his wife Frances were the owners of a second home in the upscale Utah town of Midway and its market value in 2013 was estimated at $383,734.
They had an additional property up Provo Canyon in Utah and its value was estimated to be around $216,000.
International Business Times could not independently confirm the numbers given in the reports.
Monson worked in publishing prior to joining the LDS and became associated with the Deseret News in 1948, where he served as an executive in the advertising division. He was later named sales manager of the Deseret News Press and rose to the position of general manager, a position he held at the time of his appointment to the Quorum of the Twelve in 1963 according to the website of the LDS.
He also served as the chairman of the board of Deseret News Publishing Co. and was a former member of the board of directors of Printing Industries of America.
Monson had a wide business background, having served as a member of the College of Business faculty at the University of Utah and later receiving his MBA degree from Brigham Young University.
He served as chairman of the LDS Church Board of Education and Board of Trustees at the time of his death.

His website stated the possibility that he received a stipend but did not give any actual monetary figure. "It is possible he receives a stipend, due to how young he was when he gave up paid employment, but it’s also possible his children and other relatives support him instead. He may even have savings invested that support him. How he supports himself really isn’t important. However he does so, he does not receive a paycheck or a share of the money brought in by the church," the website said.
LDS Church leaders release, excommunicate Elder James J. Hamula
By Tad Walch @tad_walch
Published: August 8, 2017
Elder James J. Hamula speaks during a media event at the Church History Library on Wednesday, Sept. 3, 2014. Elder Hamula was released as a General Authority Seventy. (Ravell Call, Deseret News )
SALT LAKE CITY — Senior LDS Church leaders on Tuesday excommunicated a member of the Quorum of the Seventy who had been serving as the executive director of the church’s Correlation Department, the first such action with a senior church official in nearly three decades.
"This morning, James J. Hamula was released as a General Authority Seventy of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, following church disciplinary action by the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve Apostles," Eric Hawkins, spokesman for the church, said in a prepared release Tuesday.
The announcement came following a disciplinary council comprised of the two senior councils of the church held for Hamula, 59. It is the first excommunication of a high-ranking LDS leader in the age of social media and prompted wide-ranging reaction, including expressions of love and support for Hamula and his family.
Messages left for Hamula on Tuesday were not returned.
Excommunications are unusual among Mormon leaders. Hamula's is the first since another General Authority Seventy, George P. Lee, 28 years ago. A Seventy assists the First Presidency and apostles in preaching and directing the church around the world.
"It's just so rare, especially in 20th- and 21st-century Mormonism, that it really is news," said Patrick Mason, an expert in Mormon Studies at Claremont Graduate University. "For me personally, on one level, it's news. General authorities are public figures. On the other hand, this is someone's private life. This might be a deeply intimate, private matter that should stay between him and his family and church leaders."
The church also confirmed that Tuesday's action was not due to disillusionment or apostasy on the part of Hamula.
"They're sensitive to that and the moment we're in," Mason said of church leaders. "There are people who would love to see general authorities lose their faith."
Many church members took to social media to express love and support for Hamula and his family and to pledge to pray for them. Some expressed hope that he would rejoin the church in the future. Other people kickstarted baseless speculation, unreliable gossip and base jokes.
"You'll find all kinds of reactions ranging from support for him and his family, which is generous and I think the proper response, especially from church members, to people who are happy any time they see bad news about the church," Mason said.
Details of the disciplinary council are private and were not released.
"All church discipline is carried out in complete confidence," according to an article on the church's official Mormon Newsroom website. "Church leaders have a solemn responsibility to keep confidential all information they receive in confessions and interviews. To protect that confidence, the church will not discuss the proceedings of a disciplinary council."
"In rare cases," the article noted, "the decision of a disciplinary council may be shared publicly to prevent others from being harmed through misinformation."
Hamula had been a general authority and member of the Seventy since his call in April 2008. He previously had served as a mission president in Washington, D.C., as the church’s Pacific Area president and as the assistant executive director of the Church History Department, where LDS historian Ron Esplin knew him.
"I'm saddened to hear about this," Esplin said. He has done research on early LDS Church apostles excommunicated and dismissed from the Quorum of the Twelve during the faith's formative years. Those were young, inexperienced men in a rapidly changing church caught up in disagreements about what a modern-day prophet's role should be, for example.
Since then, most excommunications of church leadership positions have not involved apostasy, Esplin said, noting the church has had "very steady leadership."
"We have so many more total general authority leaders than we had then, but it's very, very rare there's a problem at that level," he said. "Luckily, we haven't had to deal with this for quite some time."
Elder M. Russell Ballard, a senior member of the Quorum of the Twelve, described the three purposes of church councils in a 1990 article in the Ensign, the church's official magazine — "to save the soul of the transgressor, to protect the innocent, and to safeguard the Church’s purity, integrity, and good name."
He added that church disciplinary action is not intended to be the end of the process but the beginning of an opportunity to return to full fellowship and to the full blessings of the church.
"The desired result is that the person will make whatever changes are necessary to return fully and completely to be able to receive the marvelous blessings of the church," he said.
In 2014, the Deseret News published an inside look at "How LDS Church disciplinary councils work and change lives."
Six months after his call to become a General Authority Seventy, Hamula addressed the priesthood session of the church’s worldwide general conference in October 2008 in a talk titled, "Winning the War Against Evil."
Hamula spoke at general conference again in October 2014, delivering a talk on "The Sacrament and the Atonement."
He became the executive director of the Correlation Department in 2016, providing priesthood oversight of the department. The correlation department operates under direction of the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. Its role is to ensure unity in church structure, practice and doctrine in a global faith with 15.8 million members.
Hamula earned bachelor’s, master's and juris doctorate degrees from BYU. He practiced law from 1985 until his call to be a general authority in 2008.

Hamula has served in other church callings, including as a full-time missionary in the Germany Munich Mission, bishop, stake president, president of the Washington D.C. South Mission (1994–97) and Area Seventy (2000–08).
Steve Bloor: Former Mormon bishop critical of church accuses it of 'excommunication by the backdoor'
The 51-year-old podiatrist said he was told last week that his name had been removed from the church's records
Cahal Milmo @cahalmilmo
Tuesday, 10 November 2015
Former Mormon Bishop of Helston in Cornwall, Steve Bloor, had his name removed as an LDS member
A former Mormon bishop has accused the church of “excommunication by the backdoor” after it allegedly removed his name from its list of members following his criticism of some of its teachings.
Steve Bloor, who was raised as a member of the Mormon faith, otherwise known as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (LDS), stepped down as a clergyman in 2011 after becoming disillusioned with its record on issues such as homosexuality and the explanation of its origins in 1830s America.
The 51-year-old podiatrist, from Helston, Cornwall, said that despite his differences with the church he wanted to maintain his membership as part of his identity but was told last week that his name had been removed from its records.
Mr Bloor told The Independent that the action, which he only found about after a church official visited his parents, had been taken despite written statements from him that he wished to remain a member. He suspects that the move has been made to circumvent the LDS’s formal excommunication process.
The former bishop said: “Excommunication is the worst punishment that can be handed out within the Mormon faith - it’s reserved for the worst deeds and for a believing Mormon it is seen as a fate worse than death itself. And yet I believe this is effectively what has happened to me - it is excommunication by the backdoor because the church does not want the bad publicity.
“I have repeatedly said that I wished to maintain my membership and I was never informed of any formal proceedings that could lead to excommunication. And yet my name has been removed as a church member.

“I don’t think excommunication should have any place in a modern society. It is a medieval punishment. Mormonism is part of my identity and I don’t think the church should be able to eradicate it just because I have spoken publicly about my differences with its beliefs. The church wants to control people and silence free speech.”
Despite its status as one of the biggest and wealthiest Christian movements in the world, Mormonism remains a source of controversy due to its idiosyncratic origins based on the teachings of its founder, American farm hand Joseph Smith, and some of its historic teachings. Until 1978 it taught that blacks were cursed and barred them from becoming priests.
Adherents speak of the “24/7” nature of the faith, which also asks its members to donate ten per cent of their income to the church as a “tithe”. According to one estimate, the LDS has business and property assets worth $40bn (£26bn) worldwide.
Mr Bloor spent seven years as the Mormon Bishop of Helston before becoming disillusioned with aspects of its teaching and stepping down from his role. He has since become an outspoken critic, setting up a petition calling on the church to formally apologise for its stance on black people and writing a popular blog. He also agreed to appear as a witness for a private prosecution against the church for an allegation of fraud which was later withdrawn.
He said: “When I decided to speak out I was told I would lose all my friends. It is a faith which doesn’t take over only your religious life but also your social life. You don’t have time for other friends. And I’m afraid what I was told has been proved true - of the over 300 Mormons I knew locally only one has contacted me in the last 12 months. It is the ultimate form of tribal shaming.”
The former clergyman, who describes himself as a non-believing Mormon, said he had been invited by church officials last month to an informal meeting to discuss his membership of the church. He said he was given no notice of a formal “Disciplinary Council”, the church body with the power to order an excommunication, and at no time indicated he was leaving the church.
But when he attempted to sign in on the LDS website last week he was denied access with a message reading “You have stated that you are not a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints”. Mr  Bloor said: “This is simply not true.”
The father-of-four has now written to the LDS headquarters in Salt Lake City asking for the removal of his name to be revoked.
The Church confirmed that it had removed Mr Bloor's status as a member but insisted it had correctly followed its procedures.
In a statement, it said: “Choosing one's own spiritual path is a God-given right. However, when a current member of the Church persists in publicly advocating teaching in direct opposition to Church tenets, the member will lose his or her membership.
”We can confirm there has been ample opportunity for Mr Bloor to discuss his concerns with local ministers and that, following internal Church procedures, Mr Bloor is no longer a member of the Church. He is availing himself of the opportunity to ask another Church body for a review.“
Also See:

Sex Abuse In The Mormon Church!

03 April 2018

From a Mormon to an Atheist in Two Days!

30 January 2018

Mormons Leaving Church In Droves!!

26 January 2018

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

If You Know What's Good For You ... (Part 32)

Too Much Sitting Could Raise Brain Risks
Robert Preidt
Monday, April 16, 2018
(HealthDay News) -- There's been lots of research into how too many hours lounging on chairs and sofas can harm the heart. Now, researchers say all that sitting might be bad for your brain, too.
A new study found that too much time spent sitting was correlated with an unhealthy "thinning" of tissue in a key brain area tied to memory.
And it appears that the link isn't simply due to the fact that folks who sit for hours each day aren't exercising -- there was something about the act of sitting itself that seemed to be key, the researchers said.
"We found that sedentary behavior, but not [levels of] physical activity, was associated with less thickness of the medial temporal lobe," a brain region that's crucial to the formation of new memories, explained a team led by Prabha Siddarth.
Siddarth is a biostatistician at the University of California, Los Angeles' Semel Institute of Neuroscience and Human Behavior.
One brain specialist called the research early, but "intriguing."
While the study can't prove that sitting helped cause the brain tissue thinning, the research "bears further exploration," said Dr. Marc Gordon, chair of neurology at Zucker Hillside Hospital in Glen Oaks, N.Y.
In the study, Siddarth's group asked 35 people, aged 45 to 75, about their physical activity levels and the average amount of time they spent sitting each day during the previous week. Each participant also underwent a scan of their medial temporal lobe.
Study participants who spent a lot of time sitting were more likely to have thinning of this brain region, the investigators found. And that included even those people who had relatively high levels of physical activity when they weren't sitting.
As Gordon noted, however, "not all sitting behavior is necessarily equal, and what people are doing while they are seated may have different effects [on brain health]."
Siddarth's team explained that "it is possible that there may be two distinct groups: mentally active sitting and mentally inactive sitting. In mentally active sitting, individuals may be attending to cognitive demanding tasks such as crossword puzzles, documentation, writing, or computer games. In mentally inactive sitting, individuals may be engaging in less demanding, passive tasks such as watching television or movies."
The study authors also noted that a thinning of the medial temporal lobe is suspected of being a forerunner of mental decline and dementia in middle-aged and older adults.
So, it's plausible that reducing the amount of time spent sitting could be a way to improve brain health in people at risk for Alzheimer's disease and other types of dementia, the researchers suggested.
And not only the brain might be helped: Prior research has shown that too much sitting increases the risk of heart diseasediabetes and premature death, the study authors noted.
Siddarth's team said it wants to conduct a long-term study to determine if too much sitting actually helps cause a thinning of the medial temporal lobe.
The findings were reported April 12 in the journal PLOS One.
Eating lentils regularly could prevent the need for several medications: They nourish blood vessels and improve blood flow, pressure, circulation
by: Zoey Sky
Monday, April 16, 2018        
(Natural News) According to a study, lentils can help significantly reduce “dangerous blood pressure levels.”
Additionally, new data also showed that lentils could reverse deteriorating blood vessel health.
The researchers explained that the study, which was conducted on rats, proved that consuming the health-boosting food regularly can effectively prevent the increase in blood pressure which occurs as we grow older.
Based on the findings, eating lentils can also reverse the changes that occur in blood vessels due to high blood pressure.
Dr. Peter Zahradka from the University of Manitoba, the lead investigator for the Canadian study, explained that this is good news because lentils are a “non-pharmacological way of treating diseases associated with blood vessel dysfunction.”
The findings are a continuation of two earlier studies. The first was a clinical trial that showed how eating legumes – particularly a combination of beans, chickpeas, lentils, and peas – could boost blood flow to the legs of patients diagnosed with peripheral artery disease. This condition is connected to coronary heart disease and cerebrovascular disease.
The second study found that lentils could effectively block high blood pressure. (Related: Probiotics for your heart: Eat yogurt twice a week to reduce risk of heart attack in those with high blood pressure by up to 30%.)
Dr. Zahradka added that the most notable finding of the recent study illustrated how lentils could change the physical properties of blood vessels to make them resemble the vessels found in healthy animals. However, human studies are required to confirm these findings. 
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Dr. Julianne CurranPulse Canada’s director of nutrition, scientific, and regulatory affairs, concluded that lentils could be part of a simple, cost-effective dietary strategy that can help address cardiovascular disease. Pulse Canada is the national association that represents the growers, processors, and traders of Canada’s pulse crops.
In 2012, a study from the University of Toronto, led by Dr. David Jenkins, discovered that eating more pulses (e.g., beans, chickpeas, and lentils) helped lower the risk of heart disease by managing a patient’s blood sugar levels.

Foods that can help fight high blood pressure

If you or someone you love has high blood pressure, eat more of the foods below:
  • Bananas – This fruit contains potassium, and fresh produce is a better source of potassium than supplements.
  • Beets – Beets are full of nitric oxide that can help open the blood vessels and lower blood pressure. You can make juice from beets, or you can cook and eat the whole root.
  • Berries – Blueberries are rich in natural compounds called flavonoids. These compounds can help prevent hypertension and lower blood pressure. Other sources of flavonoids include raspberries and strawberries.
  • Dark chocolate – This healthy treat is linked to a lower risk for cardiovascular disease (CVD). Eat at least 100 grams of dark chocolate daily to help lower your risk of CVD.
  • Garlic – Garlic can help minimize hypertension by increasing the amount of nitric oxide in the body.
  • Herbs – Herbs are a healthy substitute for salt if you love eating flavorful dishes. Sources include basil, cinnamon, rosemary, and thyme.
  • Olive oil – Olive oil is a healthy fat, and it is rich in polyphenols, the inflammation-fighting compounds that can help lower blood pressure. Additionally, this healthy fat is an excellent alternative to butter, canola oil, or commercial salad dressing.
  • Pomegranates – According to a study, consuming a cup of pomegranate juice once a day for at least four weeks can help lower blood pressure. However, before you buy pomegranate juice check the packaging. Added sugars can negate the health benefits of pomegranate juice.
  • Leafy greens – Leafy greens are another great source of potassium which helps the kidneys eliminate more sodium through urine. This then lowers your blood pressure. Sources include arugula, beet greens, collard greens, kale, romaine lettuce, spinach, Swiss chard, and turnip greens.
You can read more articles about the health benefits of lentils and other natural remedies at
Sources include:
Everything you need to know about lentils
By Megan Ware RDN LD - Reviewed by Natalie Butler, RD, LD
Last updated   Mon 22 January 2018
Lentils are a high-protein, high-fiber member of the legume family. Like a mini version of a bean, lentils grow in pods and come in red, brown, black, and green varieties.
They are relatively quick and easy to prepare compared with dried beans, and their low cost makes them an accessible form of high-quality protein for many people around the world.
Fast facts on lentils
Here are some key points about lentils. More detail is in the main article.
  • Lentils are an excellent natural source of folate and manganese.
  • They are an economical source of protein.
  • Evidence suggests they protect heart health.
  • Lentils are an easy-to-prepare, versatile, and nutritious ingredient.
Lentils are rich in minerals, protein, and fiber.
Lentils are a highly nutritious food, rich in minerals, protein, and fiber.
100 grams (g) of cooked lentils contains:
  • 116 calories
  • 9.02 g of protein
  • 0.3 g of fat
  • 20.13 g of carbohydrates, including 7.9 g of fiber and 1.8 g of sugar
That same 100 g serving provides the following 
proportion of your daily intake:
  • 45 percent of folate
  • 36 percent of iron
  • 70 percent of manganese
  • 28 percent of phosphorus
  • 58 percent of thiamin
  • 14 percent of potassium
  • 127 percent of vitamin B6
Lentils are also a source of riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, magnesium, zinc, copper, manganese, and selenium.
Consuming plant-based foods of all kinds is associated with a reduced risk of many lifestyle-related health conditions.
Many studies have suggested that increasing consumption of plant foods like lentils decreases the risk of obesitydiabetesheart disease, and overall mortality while promoting a healthy complexion and hair, increased energy, and overall lower weight.
Heart health
Lentils can be highly beneficial for heart health.
The fiber, folic acid, and potassium in lentils all support heart health.
According to the American Heart Association (AHA), increased fiber intake can reduce low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, or "bad" cholesterol levels, beyond what can be achieved by a diet low in saturated and trans fats alone.
Not only is fiber associated with a lower incidence of cardiovascular disease, but also with a slower progression of the disease in high-risk individuals.
Lentils add essential vitamins, minerals, and fiber to the diet, and they provide protein and sustenance that can replace meat in meals.
When meat, a major source of saturated and trans fats in the diet, is replaced with a high-fiber food like lentils, the risk for heart disease is further decreased.
The United States (U.S.) Surgeon General recommends lowering meat consumption by 15 percent.
The potassium, calcium, and magnesium in lentils have been found to decrease blood pressure naturally.
Fewer than 2 percent of US adults currently meet the daily 4,700 mg recommendation for potassium.
Folate is critical for preventing congenital disabilities. It has been shown to cut the chances of early delivery by 50 percent or more if consumed for at least a year before pregnancy.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend that women consume 400 micrograms (mcg) of folic acid every day during their childbearing years.
One cup of lentils provides almost 90 percent of the required folate needs for a day.
Selenium is a mineral found in lentils. It is not present in most other foods.
Selenium prevents inflammation, decreases tumor 
growth rates, and improves immune response to infection by stimulating the production of disease-killing T-cells.
It also plays a role in liver enzyme function and helps detoxify some cancer-causing compounds in the body.
The fiber in lentils is also associated with a lowered risk of colorectal cancer.
Fighting fatigue
Lentils are a great way to keep energy up and combat fatigue.
Iron deficiency is a common cause of fatigue.
Women aged 18 to 50 years are particularly susceptible to iron deficiency. Not getting enough iron in the diet can affect how efficiently the body uses energy.
Lentils are a good non-heme source of iron.
One cup of cooked lentils contains over one-third of daily iron needs.
Non-heme means that the source of iron is not the hemoglobin in the blood. Meat and fish contain heme iron, while plant sources are non-heme.
Non-heme iron is less easy for the body to absorb, but it is valuable for people who do not consume meat for health or other reasons.
Digestion, regularity, and satiety
Adequate fiber intake is commonly recognized as an important factor in weight loss by functioning as a "bulking agent" in the digestive system.
Fiber in the diet helps to increase satiety and reduce appetite, giving a "full" feeling for longer. This can lower the overall calorie intake.
The high fiber in lentils also helps prevent 
constipation and promote regularity for a healthy digestive tract.
There are three main types of lentil in the U.S. These include:
  • Brown lentils: These have a mild, earthy flavor and will become mushy when overcooked. These are best used in soups.
  • French green, or Puy, lentils: These have a peppery taste and are better in salads, due to their crunchy texture.
  • Red lentils: These are common in Middle-Eastern or Indian cuisine and are actually brown Massor lentils that have had their hulls removed. They are most effective in purees and recipe thickeners.

Other types include Beluga lentils, which resemble caviar and are more expensive, and white lentils, which are black lentils that have had the hull removed. Macachiados lentils are another option and have a distinctive strong, nutty taste. They are often used in Mexican dishes.
There are four main types of lentils:
  • Brown lentils are the cheapest and soften the most upon cooking. They are best used in soups and stews.
  • Green lentils have a nuttier flavor. They stay firm when cooked and make good salad or taco toppers.
  • Red lentils have a milder taste. They are used in Indian dals and purees.
  • Black lentils are also known as beluga lentils, as they look like caviar when cooked.

Unlike dried beans, lentils do not require soaking. Rinse away any dirt from the lentils and discard any damaged lentils or foreign material.
Place the lentils into a pot and add 2 cups of water.
Bring to a boil, reduce the heat, and simmer to desired tenderness, typically about 15 to 20 minutes. One cup of dried lentils will swell to 2 cups when cooked.
Quick tips:
Here are some easy and tasty ways to used lentils in cooking:
  • Add lentils to any soup or stew recipe for extra nutrients and fiber
  • Precook lentils and keep them in the refrigerator for a quick protein source
  • Use lentils in place of beans in any recipe
  • Replace half the meat in Bolognese sauce or lasagna with red lentils
  • Make a lentil dip by smashing cooked lentils with a fork and adding garlic, onion, chili powder, and chopped tomatoes
  • Look out for new snacks like lentil-based crackers, chips, or crisps
Consuming large amounts of fiber may cause 
flatulence and constipation.
Anyone who is increasing their fiber intake should:
  • drink plenty of liquids to prevent constipation
  • take in small amounts of fiber at each meal
  • gradually increase intake for 1 or 2 months
These tips can help prevent digestive discomfort as the body adjusts to the change.
Loneliness: A Health Problem That Could Be Deadlier Than Obesity, Study Says
Richard Enos
April 11, 2018
Loneliness can reliably be linked to a significant increase in the risk of early mortality, according to a study at Brigham Young University. Head author, Julianne Holt-Lunstad, notes that “substantial evidence now indicates that individuals lacking social connections (both objective and subjective social isolation) are at risk for premature mortality.”
Holt-Lunstad believes the risks associated with loneliness are already greater than such established dangers as obesity:
Several decades ago scientists who observed widespread dietary and behavior changes raised warnings about obesity and related health problems. The present obesity epidemic had been predicted. Obesity now receives constant coverage in the media and in public health policy. The current status of research on the risks of loneliness and social isolation is similar to that of research on obesity 3 decades ago… Current evidence indicates that heightened risk for mortality from a lack of social relationships is greater than that from obesity.
Furthermore, she warns that “researchers have predicted that loneliness will reach epidemic proportions by 2030 unless action is taken.”
Why Are We So Isolated From Each Other?
From the long view, it can be said that Western civilization as a whole has fostered a gradual disintegration of our physical and social ties. With an emphasis on individual goals and an almost fanatical regard for personal achievement, the traditional institutions of family and community and their capacity to provide their members with a sense of belonging and shared purpose have become significantly fragmented.
The family unit has gone from large generations-linked mutual support systems to small and immediate units, sometimes involving single parents whose necessities make it very difficult to create a stable home environment for their children. Add to that the fact that more and more people are not even building families, and our society has more people living alone than at any other time in history. This includes the elderly, who are less likely to find a ‘fit’ living within their children’s families than ever before.
The decline of the ‘community’ is perhaps as significant as the disintegration of the family unit. In Western-style communities, people work as a collection of individual units interacting by specific functions rather than as an interrelated whole with a significant shared identity. Naturally, attempts are made today to join or build ‘communities’ all the time, but like the Meetup model, they are founded on the gathering of select people with similar interests and purposes, rather than a shared embrace of all people within a certain geographical area.
The Rise of Social Media
I believe the rise in prominence of social media has in part been fuelled by the sense of alienation we have long felt within our modern society. I don’t believe social media is the root cause of our loneliness, as some speculate, but rather a symptom of this much longer-standing social problem. Connecting via chats and web pages is just something that we have gotten into the habit of reaching for since it is so immediately accessible. But like any quick fix, it does not end up fulfilling our deeper needs, either individually or as a society.
If we see that our society has been slowly disintegrating over hundreds of years, then it becomes incumbent upon us as a society (if we can still even identify ourselves with our ‘society’) to take measures to remedy this situation. What those measures might be, though, given how things seem to be trending, is a matter of great conjecture.
On Being Alone 
One approach is to first acknowledge that Western society’s emphasis on the individual is not necessarily a bad thing. In fact, I believe that the development of personal integrity, creativity, and autonomy is a critical step in the evolution of human consciousness. Learning how to be alone with oneself is a part of that process. In his work entitled Pensées, French philosopher Blaise Pascal observed that “All of humanity’s problems stem from man’s inability to sit quietly in a room alone.”
As evidenced by Eastern gurus and mystics, one can be perfectly content in isolation. This can be greatly facilitated by the practice of meditation and other such methods that give us a direct perception of our energetic connectedness not only with other people, but with all things. In this higher state, the damaging emotional impact of loneliness and social isolation are not experienced.
Our Next Step
Still, the life of the yogi remains for the few. The rest of us, it seems, have come to this planet to interact, share, and love. And we have not incarnated into this dense physical world to get better at virtual relationships. At this stage, we have perhaps gotten a bit too accustomed to social isolation for our own good.
Holt-Lunstad notes that “although living alone can offer conveniences and advantages for an individual, this meta-analysis indicates that physical health is not among them.” She also cites another study that “has demonstrated higher survival rates for those who are more socially connected.” And then there is the seminal 75-Year Harvard University study, where “it was universally clear that without loving and supportive relationships, men in the study were not happy.” The message is becoming clear: we need to come together.
We are perhaps at a larger turning point in our development than most of us realize. It seems that we have reached the extreme edge of the exploration of individualism, and we are readying to move into greater balance with a collective identity. This is not a return to traditional ways, but rather a synthesis of our growth as individuals with the shared experience we are now hungering for. This synthesis signifies the next stage of our evolution.
Many cases of “dementia” are actually side effects of prescription drugs or vaccines, according to research
by: Isabelle Z.
Tuesday, February 27, 2018
(Natural News) The “quick facts” provided by the Alzheimer’s Association are pretty concerning: More than five million people in America are living with Alzheimer’s, and that number is projected to reach 16 million by the year 2050. As the sixth leading cause of death in our nation, it kills more Americans than prostate cancer and breast cancer combined. Someone in the U.S. develops Alzheimer’s every 66 seconds; will you be one of them?
With statistics like these, it’s no wonder that people want to do everything they can to reduce their odds. However, it’s also important to note that Alzheimer’s is only one of the potential causes of dementia. While many people use the terms interchangeably, Alzheimer’s is really only responsible for around 50 to 70 percent of dementia cases. The misleading terminology is obscuring one very dark fact about dementia: Many times, it’s being caused not by something scientists are still struggling to understand like Alzheimer’s but rather by things that are masquerading as tools for good health; vaccines and prescription drugs.
In fact, the Alzheimer’s Association that publicizes these statistics is subsidized by Big Pharma. It’s simply good business sense that they want people to believe that every memory-loss patient falls under the Alzheimer’s umbrella because then they can sell you drugs that purportedly address it. Their research has led them to an approach that pays dividends: promoting and destigmatizing what many think of as “mental illnesses,” making them seem unpreventable but manageable with drugs. Many people who work for the Alzheimer’s Association and similar organizations are well-meaning people who want to help and are often unaware of the connection to Big Pharma.
You have more control over “dementia” than you’re being led to believe
It’s no coincidence that dementia cases have been spiking during the same time that children and adults alike are being over-vaccinated (flu shot, anyone?) and the over-prescription of brain-altering drugs like antidepressants is prevalent.
A help guide based on a Harvard University report admits as much. According to the report, “medications are common culprits in mental decline.” As the body ages, the liver’s efficiency when it comes to metabolizing drugs declines, and the kidneys do not eliminate them as quickly as they once did. This causes the drugs to accumulate in the body, which means those who take multiple medications are particularly susceptible to this effect.
Included in the list of drugs published in the guide that cause dementia-like symptoms are antidepressants, anti-anxiety medications, sedatives, corticosteroids, narcotics, antihistamines, cardiovascular drugs, and anticonvulsants. It’s a very broad range of drugs, and many elderly people take medications from one or more of those categories. In fact, you might want to go check your medicine cabinet right now.
A study published in JAMA Internal Medicine correlated the use of popular medications like Benadryl and other anticholinergic drugs with dementia onset. According to the researchers, patients who took these medications for three years or more had a 54 percent higher chance of going on to develop the disorder.
Vaccines are also responsible for causing symptoms mistaken for dementia. People in their 40s are increasingly being diagnosed with “dementia,” and experts believe that environmental factors must be responsible in these cases. Mercury-containing thimerosal was used widely in childhood vaccines until 2001 and remains in some vaccines, including flu shots, to this day. A study published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease found that exposure to mercury could produce many of the changes that are seen in Alzheimer’s patients, including impaired cognitive function and memory as well as confusion.
Researcher Richard Deth stated: “Mercury is clearly contributing to neurological problems, whose rate is increasing in parallel with rising levels of mercury. It seems that the two are tied together.”
Another common ingredient found in vaccines, aluminum, has been linked to dementia as well.
It’s a pretty smart way to keep the profit machine turning for Big Pharma: Convince people they need vaccines or drugs, and when those vaccines or drugs cause further side effects and illnesses, sell them even more drugs to counteract them. And the best part for them is that because mental decline is involved, it reduces the chances that people will wake up to what is really going on here.
Read for more coverage of medical discoveries about the brain.
Sources for this article include:
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