About the Author

Denis Gingras

Denis Gingras has worked for several years on the borderline between science and literature, his two childhood passions. The holder of a doctorate in physiology from the Université de Montréal (1993) and a post-doctoral degree from McGill University (1996), for fifteen years he was a researcher specializing in oncology in the Hemato-oncology Service at Hôpital Sainte-Justine.

Books by this Author
Cooking with Foods That Fight Cancer

Beef with lemongrass

4 servings
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Difficulty: easy

Beef with lemongrass is delicious with perfumed steamed rice seasoned with fish sauce.

175 ml (3/4 cup) vegetable oil
160 g (1 cup) onions, finely sliced
2 tsp garlic, minced
2 tbsp lemongrass, chopped
2 tsp fresh ginger, minced
160 g (1 cup) green onions, finely sliced
500 g (1 lb) beef, Chinese fondue cut
60 ml (1/4 cup) fish sauce (nuoc-­mâm or nam pla)
2 tsp sugar
2 tbsp sesame seeds, toasted
Salt and freshly ground pepper
Several leaves of fresh coriander

Heat the wok over high heat, add the oil and cook the onions, garlic, lemongrass, ginger, green onions, and beef over medium-­high heat for 1 to 2 minutes.
Add the fish sauce, sugar, and sesame seeds. Season with salt and pepper to taste, and cook for 1 to 2 minutes over medium-­high heat.
Serve immediately, garnishing with the coriander leaves.

Yves Moscato, chefco-proprietor of 48 St-Paul, Cuisine_monde in Quebec

Oat and ginger shortbread cookies

24 cookies
Preparation time: 1 h 15
Difficulty: average

70 g (3/4 cup) rolled oats
240 g (1 cup) butter
240 g (1 cup) brown sugar
1 tsp ground ginger
225 g (1 3/4 cups) all-­purpose unbleached flour
30 to 60 g (1/2 to 1 cup) crystallized ginger, finely chopped

Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F).
Chop the rolled oats in a food processor and set aside.
Mix the butter and brown sugar together until creamy.
Add the ground ginger, rolled oats, flour, and crystallized ginger.
Pack the mixture into a large rectangular 30 x 25 cm (12 x 10 in) cake pan with your hands.
Using a knife, make incisions in the form of squares, diamonds, triangles, or rectangles on the surface of the mixture.
Bake in the oven for 30 to 35 minutes, until the top is golden.
Cut the bars along the incision marks while still hot, set aside and let cool completely before serving.

Susan Sylvester, Chef-Instructor at the École hôtelière de la Capitale in Quebec

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The Scientific Facts to Help Us Understand It Better
tagged : death & dying
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Eating Well, Living Well

Eating Well, Living Well

An Everyday Guide for Optimum Health
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Chapter 1
When Diet Leads to Illness
A child born today in an industrialized country can hope to live on average for nearly 80 years, a remarkable statistic considering that for the greater part of our history, life expectancy has been no more than 20 to 30 years (Figure 1). Only in the second half of the nineteenth century did life expectancy signifi cantly improve, continuing upward thanks to the amazing breakthroughs achieved by medical science during the twentieth century (Figure 2). In particular, the development of numerous antibiotics, vaccines, drugs, surgical procedures, and other medical achievements over the past 50 years has considerably reduced the toll taken by serious diseases, particularly those of the infectious kind. Barely a century has passed since tuberculosis, pneumonia, and diarrhea alone were responsible for one third of all deaths in the United States. These diseases today represent only a small percentage of deaths, well behind mortalities from "new diseases" such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, and other chronic conditions like Type-2 diabetes and neurodegenerative diseases (Figure 3). These illnesses therefore constitute the principal challenge faced by medicine today, well ahead of certain risk factors that often make headlines but whose real impact on public health is much less signifi cant (Figure 4).
Even though longer life expectancy has clearly played a role in the soaring mortality rates from chronic diseases, it is nonetheless worrisome that these diseases also strike people in their prime, considerably diminishing the duration and quality of life. For example, the World Health Organization (WHO) states that a person who lives for 95 years will lose an average of almost ten years of good health as a result of one or more of these chronic diseases. It goes without saying that the loss of independence and suffering resulting from the treatment of these diseases (surgery, chemotherapy, dialysis, etc.) represent a substantial loss of the benefi ts that should derive from a longer life span. Although the continued increase in life expectancy we have seen over the last 150 years suggests that average life spans could reach 90 or even 95 years in a few decades from now, this high incidence of serious chronic diseases threatens not only to halt the trend, but also to undermine the main reason for living longer: staying in good health for as many years as possible.

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Foods That Fight Cancer

Foods That Fight Cancer

Preventing Cancer through Diet
also available: Paperback
tagged : cancer
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Cancer prevention facts to add to your diet
-Approximately one third of all cancers are directly related to diet.

-A diet containing three or four weekly servings of broccoli, nothing too excessive, was shown to be sufficient to protect individuals from colon polyps.

-Cruciferous vegetables (brussel sprouts, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, kale) should be lightly cooked and thoroughly chewed when eaten in order to fully benefit from their anti-cancer potential. Chewing releases the active molecules.

-Freshly crushed garlic is by far the best source of anti-cancer compounds and should be preferred over supplements.

-The key to benefiting from the anti-cancer effects of soy lies in consuming about 50 grams per day of the whole food, such as raw (edamame) or dry roasted soybeans. Supplements containing isoflavones are not an acceptable alternative to the whole food and should be avoided.

-Colon cancer appears to be one of the cancers on which curcumin may have the greatest positive impact. The daily addition of a teaspoon of turmeric to soups, salad dressings, or pasta dishes is a simple way of providing curcumin intake sufficient to prevent the development if cancer.

-Green Tea contains large amounts of catechins, compounds that boast many anti-cancer properties. To maximize the preventative effects afforded by tea, select Japanese green teas, allow for an eight-to-ten minute brewing period and always drink freshly brewed tea, and avoiding Thermoses.

-Eating cranberries should be preferred over drinking cranberry juice.

-The best way to increase omega-3 levels in diet is to eat fatty fish (wild salmon, sardines, and mackerel) once or twice a week or add one tablespoon of freshly-milled flax seeds to your breakfast cereal.

-Eating two tomato sauce-based meals per week may lower your risk of developing prostate cancer by up to 25%.

-Citrus fruits are essential foods in cancer prevention: for their capacity to act directly on cancerous cells as well as their potential for enhancing the anti-cancer effects of other phytochemical compounds present in diet.

-The resveratrol present in red wine possesses powerful anti-cancer activity which may be responsible for the beneficial effects of wine on the prevention of certain cancers. Grape juice and cranberry juice contains resveratrol but at levels ten times less than red wine.

-The daily consumption of 40 grams of dark chocolate (chocolate containing 70% cocoa mass) may have definite health benefits and should replace or reduce that of sugar- and fat-filled candies with no phytochemical content.

-Many herbs and spices used as seasonings, in particular ginger contain large quantities of molecules that act as anti-inflammatory compounds, which also reduce the risks of developing certain chronic diseases.

-Instead of replacing butter with margarine, use olive oil as much as possible as a source of dietary fat; you will benefit from its healthful lipids knowing that it also possesses anti-cancer properties of its own.

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From Suffering to Feeling Better
also available: Paperback
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