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Mindconnection eNL, 2004-03-01

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In this issue:

  1. Product Highlights
  2. Brainpower tip
  3. Time tip
  1. Finance tip
  2. Security tips
  3. Health tip/Fitness tip
  4. Thought for the day

1. Product Highlights

Bone strength, breast cancer
Supplementary soy protein is something I started eating in 1981. Been a while, hasn't it? Soy has some interesting properties.

In women, it causes an estrogen rise--which helps prevent breast cancer. In men, it doesn't affect estrogen because men don't have as many estrogen receptors--but, it does cause a slight rise in testosterone (which is good for men who want to be lean and strong).

Removed, 2015

What's this about bone strength? Many people think that if they go down to their local Costco and buy El Cheapo brand calcium supplements that their bones will be strong. That is wrong. First of all, your body can't absorb much of that elemental calcium--most of it just goes out in your urine. It's much  less expensive per gram of calcium actually used to get your calcium from a good source. My mom and her sister are both taking this, after learning the hard way.

But, calcium supplements don't tell the whole story. You also need weight-bearing exercise to retain calcium Do lots of walking on stairs and inclines, and you will probably be OK. You also need protein for the retention of calcium, so taking protein with a calcium supplement will give you the materials for building dense bones.

But, again, we don't yet have the whole story. Bone strength depends on more than bone density (which is a function of calcium retention). Bone strength depends on the shape of bone cells. Your body lays down new bone cells every day, eventually replacing your entire skeleton every ten years. These cells need a particular shape for maximum strength, and they form part of a latticework that supports enormous stresses. If you look at these cells under an electron microscope, you see they lose their shape as people get older. And, the bones get weaker.

We don't have any studies to show us how to prevent this cell deformation, but common sense dictates the following:

  1. Get the right nutrients for bone density, so you aren't putting so much stress on the latticework.

  2. Get weight-bearing exercise regularly, so your body gets signals to strengthen the latticework.

  3. Engage in activities that help you train for balance, so you are less likely to have a bone-breaking fall. Martial arts, climbing, dancing, and skating all come to mind. Skating carries increased fall hazards, so you may not want to do that. Keep in mind that most people fall from one foot to the other, rather than walk. You want to work on your footwork, with the idea of keeping your center of gravity in the right place rather than the normal "falling forward" position. You should be able to walk on ice without falling. If you fall, it's because you did not have your center of gravity in the right place.

Well, that's a nice tutorial for what is supposed to be a product ad. I don't know if I'll ever get rich by putting so much free advice in our product promo section, but what the heck. Let's be careful out there. Preparation is the key.

Hey, and don't forget. If you are traveling outside the country you will definitely want one of our electronic language translators!



2. Brainpower tip

Have you noticed that, often when you say "X" the other person hears "Y?" We often attribute this to the "fact" that the other person is an idiot. Well, that may be true. But, it might not be the reason why they "didn't get it." Usually, the cause is information overload. You explained too much.

But, this isn't about "those idiots out there." It's about you. If people who are reasonably intelligent come across like idiots to you, how might you be coming across to them? Chances are, other people tell you the important points, but also bury them in quite a bit of irrelevant commentary.


Todd: John, I have a problem. Fido is shedding in the house, so I take him for walks. I really like 4th Street, because of all the pretty flowers. I don't like 5th Street, because a mean boy lives there and he lets his Pit Bull out when we come by. So, I have to walk up the hill at 6th, cross over to Main, and come back down 4th. Fido really gets a workout, and he does what dogs do. There's a doggy-doo ordinance, and I have been using plastic bags to pick it up. I find this inconvenient. Do you have any suggestions?

John: I would carry a stick with a nail on the end of it.

Todd: For the doggy-doo?

John: No, for the Pit Bull.

Todd: I'm not picking up after the Pit Bull. Are you stupid or something?

What just happened here is John tried to pick out Todd's problem. He thought it was the Pit Bull. Todd was concerned about the doggy-doo. Todd was talking X, John was hearing Y.

What should John have done? He should have said something like, "That's very interesting, Todd. Before I make suggestions, I need to ask you which part of this multi-faceted problem you want suggestions about."

This example is a simplification, but it illustrates an important point. Before you can solve a problem, you must first define what that problem is.

We see the obverse of this all the time. People complain to their Congressman about the IRS, pointing out this or that violation of statute, this or that violation of Civil Rights, this or that abuse, this or that overtly criminal action. They get back a letter promising tax relief. The issue wasn't taxes, it was terrorism!

When you are asking for help, make your request succinctly. Todd could have said, "Do you have any suggestions on how I can more easily clean up after Fido?" Someone asking for help with IRS abuses might ask, "Can you please ask the IRS to show me the law that allows them to garnish my wages to pay someone else's tax bill?"

When you are helping someone else, restate the problem succinctly. John might say, "So, are you asking me to tell you how to keep Fido from shedding, how to cope with the shedding, or how to handle some other problem you just illusrated?" A Congressman might say, "So, are you asking me to take on a powerful criminal cartel, rather than spend your hard-earned tax dollars buying votes so I can continue to live the life of luxury?"

3. Time tip

Just say no. This is hard for some of us. Often, saying no slams a door in your face. The people you say no to won't ask again. Or, will they?

It all depends on how you say no. Suppose your schedule is full, and someone asks you to take on an additional task. Suppose it's to be on the board of an organization. But, you don't have time. Your first answer should be, "This sounds very exciting. Before I say yes, I need to look at my other commitments. The last thing I want to do is come on board and not contribute. Can I get back to you tomorrow?"

Then, make an honest appraisal of where you are. Do you have the time to take on this additional commitment? If not, what can you change so you do? If you have other commitments, which ones can you drop--and when?

Your reply can then be an unqualified Yes. Or, it may go like this. "I am too committed to other things right now to take that position. But, I do have some time I could commit over the next six months, with the goal of taking the next similar position that opens up. Is there a supporting role I could play, just to stay in consideration for a larger role when I am able to commit?"

Just saying, "No, thank you. I'm too busy." sends the wrong message. But, showing you have a sense of commitment and want to be part of the organization sends a strong message that you are a person of character and substance. Interestingly, you can even take this approach with a tax audit! (You have to be more timely than six months, though....).


4. Finance tip

Refinancing your mortgage or car may sound attractive, but be cautious. Getting a lower rate with longer terms can be a very expensive mistake. Look at the total cost of the loan.

To avoid problems many people get themselves into, don't allow yourself to be seduced by the "need" to replace your fuel-efficient car with a bloated gas-guzzling SUV. Buy the vehicle that is right for your needs, rather than the one that is right for your ego or the profits of the car companies. Ditto for your home. Whether it's house or an apartment, how much space do you really need to pay for?

If you are refinancing because of financial difficulty, consider selling the asset and buying a cheaper one. Corporations do this with their employees all the time. It's called downsizing. You may need to do this with your home or car.

Don't think of excessive spending in these areas as a sign of success. Think of it as a sign of being easily manipulated.

5. Security tip

Do you have deadbolt locks on all of your doors? If not, stop right now and call a locksmith. Get those doors fixed!

To ensure your doors are up to par for the type of neighborhood you live in, ask a locksmith to give you a security appraisal. They will often do this for free. You might need an extra jamb plate or whatever, but you aren't likely to know that. Your locksmith will be able to recommend and install the right equipment.

Remember, the purpose of all this security isn't to keep the bad guys out. It's to delay them long enough for you to retrieve your weapon, ensure it's loaded, put on your safety glasses, and be ready for when they enter.

Once you're armed, call 911--just don't make that your first priority. Your first priority is to protect yourself and a phone doesn't offer the same protection a pump-action shotgun does. Have you ever heard of phone-proof vests? I didn't think so. The fact you called the cops means nothing to someone who just broke in. And the cops aren't going to get there for several minutes unless you live next door to the local Krispy Kreme.

OK, so you delayed entry with a stout lock. Now, you have the bad guys at gunpoint. Unless they are incredibly stupid, they aren't going to give you any trouble. Once the police arrive, you can let them take over. And you have resolved a bad situation safely. But, only because those locks bought you time..


6. Health tip/Fitness tips

Don't stretch before lifting weights or running. Stretching, while good, weakens joint stabilizer muscles (temporarily). If running, you are going to need maximum stability, not maximum movement in your joints. When lifting weights, you want to maximize muscle contraction. It makes no sense to lengthen muscles before contracting them.

The time to stretch is after exercise. The stretching will help move lactic acid and other wastes out of the muscles and nutrients in. Plus, the muscles are now warm and primed for stretching. One of the problems with pre-exercise stretching is you are trying to stretch cold muscles--this leads to micro-tears and scarring.

7. Thought for the Day

Enthusiasm works wonders. When you answer the phone, how do you sound? People key into your positive energy or lack of it. Think of how you do this on the job or in personal relationships.


Wishing you the best,

Mark Lamendola


The views expressed in this e-newsletter are generally not shared by criminals, zombies, or brainwashed individuals.

Except where noted, this e-newsletter is entirely the work of Mark Lamendola. Anything presented as fact can be independently verified. Often, sources are given; but where not given, they are readily available to anyone who makes the effort.

Mark provides information from either research or his own areas of established expertise. Sometimes, what appears to be a personal opinion is the only possibility when applying sound logic--reason it out before judging! (That said, some personal opinions do appear on occasion).

The purpose of this publication is to inform and empower its readers (and save you money!).

Personal note from Mark: I value each and every one of you, and I hope that shows in the diligent effort I put into writing this e-newsletter. Thank you for being a faithful reader.

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