- How breakfast jam was used to scare the enemy
- The amazing health benefits of bilberries
- Find out how this fermented remedy can cure your horse!
My Dad likes to tell an unusual story about my grandma’s visit to a department store in the ’80s…
While on the escalator between floors, she was startled by the sight of a woman descending on an opposite escalator.
She waved at the woman, and the woman waved back.
‘Ooooh,’ she said, ‘I think I know this lady.’
‘Of course you do,’ cried my Dad, ‘It’s YOU!’
It turns out that my grandma was waving at her own reflection in an enormous mirror.
To this day, I don’t know whether she didn’t recognise herself, or whether the confusion was down to her eyesight.
I’ve always liked to boast about my 20/20 vision (you’ve got to have something to laud over your four-eyed friends!) but I know that this won’t last forever.
Inevitably, all eyes degenerate with age. And for me, it certainly runs in the family.
There is some hope, though, and it comes in the form of an amazing berry…
What World War II taught us about jam
Here’s another of my extraordinary facts for you to enjoy…
In World War II, British Royal Air Force pilots discovered that during their nightly bombing runs, their sight was much better if they’d been eating bilberry jam.
‘I say,’ muttered Air Marshall Smith, ‘Our breakfast could be the key to winning this war!’
These claims led to a great deal of research into the effects of bilberry fruit extracts on the eyes until, in the 1960s, scientists at last realised why the jam was so beneficial.
Bilberries contain anthocyanosides, chemicals that improve blood circulation and protect fragile capillaries in the eyes.
These enzymes are crucial to vision and to the eye’s ability to adapt to the dark.
In the 1980s, Italian researchers reported that 76% of their test subjects reported a strong improvement in their shortsightedness after being given 150mg per day of a blueberry extract, plus vitamin A, for 15 days.
Further research has found that bilberry may also reduce chronic eye fatigue, severe nearsightedness, and day blindness.
Dr. Mark Stengler, author of ‘A Handbook of Natural Remedies’ says:
‘Most people notice their eyes feel much better after they take bilberry. Patients tell me their vision improves, their eyes get less tired and bloodshot, and they are less prone to headaches.’
If you are a heavy computer user, operate machinery, or fly bombing missions over Germany, then bilberry jam for breakfast every day could the answer.
Fight cataracts with jam
You could also help prevent the onset of cataracts with bilberries.
In one case study, when treated with a combination of bilberry and vitamin E, the progression of cataract formation was halted in 97% of patients.
This is because Bilberry is packed with antioxidant vitamins, A and C.
Many experts now believe that people suffering early stage cataracts could avoid surgery if they use bilberry and vitamin E supplements.
The most popular bilberry supplements are extracts consisting of 15% to 25% of ‘anthocyanosides’. You usually take 240-480 mg each day.
Bilberry extract is nontoxic, with no reported side effects… but, as always, ask for some advice before you take supplements.
A better way to up your intake might be to do as our World War II heroes did… and eat some jam every day.
Because of its rich juice, the Bilberry is the fruit that needs the least amount of sugar when turning it into jam – just half a pound to sugar to a pound of berries.
To make bilberry jam, put 3 lb. of clean, fresh bilberries in a preserving pan with 1 1/2 lb. of sugar and about one cupful of water.
Bring to the boil for 40 minutes, cool and then store in screw-top jars.
And there you have it… health-on-toast.
Remember these remedies all feature European Bilberries not Blueberries which won’t have the same effect, even though they are similar species…
…if you don’t like jam or just want a simpler daily routine to protect your eyes try this.
Why your horse loves Kombucha
I recently received an email from Good Lifer, Lorraine, who wrote to tell me that she brews Kombucha tea for her family… and her horses!
‘My health has improved,’ she writes, ‘and I have used it on cuts, both human and horses.’
Although my humble garden’s a bit small for a horse, I thought you might like to know a bit about Kombucha.
Kombucha is a fermented drink made from sweet tea and a type of mushroom (or ‘culture’), created from a combination of bacteria and yeasts.
The culture looks like a beige or white rubbery pancake, but when you add it to black or green tea and turns a bowl full of sweet tea into a bowl full of vitamins, minerals, enzymes and health-giving organic acids.
Surprisingly, it tastes like apple cider or wine, depending on how you brew it.
Like yoghurt, the bacteria are a great source of nutrition, including fluorides and anti-carcinogens. In addition, Kombucha contains the range of B vitamins, particularly B1, B2, B6 and B12.
Users claim that it’s a great detoxifier, energiser and immune booster.
It’s also an anti-inflammatory, which is why Lorraine has found it useful for cuts.
If you use this remedy, why not drop me an email and tell of any interesting results – good or bad.
If you’re a horse, you may find the computer keyboard tricky to use because of hooves – so I would suggest writing a letter.
I can’t promise to answer your emails directly, but I always take our feedback, ideas and comments into account when creating the Good Life Letter.
P.S. If you want to detox on the run up to the festive season why not try the exclusive herbal detox tea blend which is freshly blended by a registered medical herbalist – this proves very popular and sells out quickly, so don’t delay if you want to try it.