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Grant received for Nutrition Grown research and teaching garden

Please celebrate with me this new grant for Nutrition Farming for Hawaii™. a project of the North Kohala Community Resource Center.  Working together with the Hawaii Institute for Pacific Agriculture, a research and demonstration garden for Nutrition Grown™ foods is being established.  We will have a large variety of vegetable crops in production and track their nutrient content over time as the soil is improved through the analysis and amending process.  Visitors–from school kids to farmers–will be welcomed to learn from the garden.

I hope you can join with us in whatever way you can, such as by participating in the new online Nutrition Grown™ course, Perfect Soil, Ultimate Food, Vibrant Health and True Success.  Sign up for the updates to receive more info on the course or contact us at info@beyondorganicresearch.com.  We are working on a webpage for it currently.

Blessings,  Dr. Jana

Nutrition Farming for Hawaii Research and Demonstration Garden at HIP Agriculture

 

Dr. Bogs Awarded Grant to Study Natural Control of Fireweed

Toxic Fireweed Taking Over Pasture

Toxic Fireweed Taking Over Pasture

Sustainable Kohala recently offered grants for new sustainable projects in the North Kohala community on the Big Island of Hawaii.  Dr. Bogs was awarded one of the grants for her research proposal entitled, Controlling Toxic Fireweed Through Natural and Sustainable Means.

The purpose and goals of the project are to develop practical, natural and sustainable methods of control of Fireweed (Senecio madagascariensis Poiret, also known as Madagascar ragwort), a highly toxic, extremely invasive, yellow-flowering weed which is taking over pastures in North Kohala.  This weed is liver toxic and has resulted in grazing animal deaths.  While animals try to avoid eating the weed, they accidentally consume it while eating grasses intertwined with it.  Fireweed is crowding out good forage, effectively decreasing pasture grass volume.

How does this project meets the criteria of local sustainability?  Grazing animals and, hence, ranchers and other grazing animal owners are at risk from this highly invasive species which was introduced to this island in the 1980’s.  Current methods of control include spraying toxic herbicides and grazing management, neither of which has proven to be very effective or practical.  For their safety, grazing animals must be removed from pastures treated with herbicides for at least several days, creating a hardship for some livestock owners.  Herbicides are persistent in the environment, some for as long as five years.  Even after the recommended waiting period, herbicide residues may be problematic for grazing animals because they are absorbed by all plants that they contact.  Furthermore, these compounds are toxic to fish and may find their way to ground water and our nearby ocean.  Promoted by the extension service, grazing management has proven to be helpful in some situations, but creates a major hardship in that animals must be removed from the land for up to two years to effect a significant change.

Dr. Bogs’ proposed experiment is based on the work of the famous soil microbiologist, Dr. Elaine Ingham.  Dr. Ingham gave a week long course in Kapaau (North Kohala) in July 2012, which Dr. Bogs attended.  The theory is that soil conditions can be changed to favor the growth of desired plant species while discouraging the growth of weeds.  The soil treatment programs are safe for livestock, so horses will be allowed to graze continually.  The ability to treat a pasture without removing livestock is a major benefit.

Work has already begun on the project, which will run through the end of the year, so stay tuned!

KMN article on microgrant 001

The Real Food Campaign

Be a Part of It!!! We’re growing the BEST FOOD EVER!

Check out the following website–

http://realfoodcampaign.org

GREAT Video explaining Nutrient-Rich(TM) Foods

Just click on the “Nutrient Dense” link below–

Nutrient Dense Foods for Consumers, Gardeners, and Farmers from Environmental Leadership Program on Vimeo.

Vision for Sustainable Agriculture

The focus of my research is “Creating Health from the Soil Up”.

Sustainable agriculture encompasses many aspects of raising food, fiber and fuel products. We must care take our soils, water and air while monitoring impacts of methods of production on agricultural workers and consumers. Ideally, we as a global community should be able to produce high quality, abundant agricultural products which enable humans and animals to thrive from generation to generation without damaging our environment. I felt compelled to study the problems in detail in a university setting and build on the work of other researchers in discovering solutions. Research done with appropriate controls and approved methodology is important for broad acceptance.

My research focuses on bridging an understanding from soil health, through plant health to animal and human health. I have been encouraged by various professors and agriculture professionals around our country and the globe who are excited about my research of comparing sustainable organic/biological cultivation systems to conventional systems and testing the effects in humans. My aim is to highlight differences that production management systems have on produce quality, emphasizing nutritional differences and direct effects on human metabolism.

For example, field observations and pilot data suggest that human blood glucose responses differ between fruits of the same cultivar grown under these different methods. It is reported that diabetics can eat high quality, biologically-produced fruit without a large glycemic fluctuation, yet the same cultivar conventionally grown causes a spike in blood glucose. What makes these observations even more intriguing is that the biologically-produced fruits typically have a higher percentage of sugars than the conventional counterparts. In addition, the biologically-produced fruits are reported to taste better and have a much longer shelf life.

The implications of this research are vast. The underlying principles can be applied to any crop.

The roadmap to sustainability starts with soil health, which implies balanced, full-spectrum minerals, active microbial and earthworm populations, and high organic matter content. Some attributes of healthy soil are:

  • Healthy soil supports healthy plant growth. An ideal microbial population helps make nutrients available to the plants.
  • Microbes “glue” soil particles together which decreases erosion and toxic run-off, decreases needed inputs, decreases costs, and saves our top soil. The producers will have good land to pass on to their heirs.
  • Selected microbes trap nitrogen from air which decreases nitrogen inputs, decreases costs, and decreases pollution.
  • Microbial activity keeps the soil temperature more constant (warmer in winter, cooler in summer) which equates to longer growing seasons. More stable ground temperatures may also influence the stability of the air temperature over the land. This may equate to less extreme weather patterns, which would bring better farming and living conditions. Currently, due to extreme weather patterns, some producers are feeling forced to expend large sums of money for greenhouses to protect their crops.
  • Selected microbes clean up toxic conditions, such as “chemically-burned” fields.
  • Microbes and earthworms recycle nutrients in the soil and improve soil tilth.
  • Beneficial microbes and soil organic matter help modulate soil moisture content allowing crops to better withstand fluctuations in moisture.

Moving on to plant health—

Through superior farming practices and wise choices of cultivars, some producers have been able to produce abundant, award-winning crops without harmful chemicals. These truly healthy crops exhibit ideal tissue pH levels, soluble solids concentrations, and mineral balances, along with low nitrates, ammonia, free amino acids and reducing sugars. Fortunately, technology has provided producers with affordable, easy-to-use tools and tests for monitoring soil and plant health. When superior plant health is achieved, then:

  • Insects are less attracted to the plants, so fewer pesticides are needed. This equates to less expense, decreased crop losses, decreased environmental pollution (air, water, soil), and fewer health risks for agricultural workers. Pesticide-free produce may also bring premium prices.
  • Plants are more disease and pest resistant, so fewer sprays will be needed. Again, less expense, decreased crop losses, decreased pollution, and fewer health risks, along with possible premiums.
  • Plants may realize their genetic potential with increased yields (increased profits) and higher quality produce (which brings premiums for the producers, sometimes huge premiums).

Quality produce has:

  • High antioxidant and nutrient density which makes it healthful and satisfying.
  • An exceptionally long shelf life which decreases losses for producers, packers, shippers, and consumers.
  • Superior taste and sensory appeal, which increases consumer demand and, again, brings premium prices.
  • A proud producer who feels good about what he does for the world as he leans against his well-padded wallet. 😉

High quality feedstuffs for animals equate to:

  • Healthier, happier animals resulting in decreased need for medication and decreased losses.
  • Increased production and profits.
  • Healthier animal food products for consumers.

Consumer benefits:

  • Improved food flavor and satisfaction.
  • Better-tasting produce may increase consumption of fruits and vegetables, which may in turn equate to better health.
  • Decreased levels of harmful agricultural chemicals means decreased toxins in food and the environment.
  • Longer shelf life leading to decreased losses after purchasing foods.
  • Full-spectrum nutrition equates to better health. This decreases healthcare costs while increasing human productivity and quality of life.

I see this as a win-win-win-win situation—for producers, animals, human consumers, and the environment. Already, in several parts of the world, some producers are “nutrition farming” and contracting with grocery stores to market their superior products to grateful consumers.

Plans for the future include:

  • expansion of on-farm and university-associated research
  • labeling program for “Nutrient-Rich” foods that have met high standards of quality including nutrient content, sensory perception parameters, shelf-life values and freedom from toxic contaminants
  • establishment of a model farm for educational purposes
  • commercial production of nutrient-rich foods
  • marketing and distribution of these high quality foods
  • involvement with industry and governmental leaders in promoting nutrient-dense sustainable agriculture

My vision is that more educators will share vital crop-improvement information in an effective manner to many producers, who will in turn supply improved nutrition within a sustainable context, making a positive impact on the health of a multitude of people and animals.

For a Healthier World, Jana D. Bogs, PhD

For more information on soil/plant testing and sustainable production practices contact:

Dr. Jana Bogs (located on the Big Island of Hawaii)

What Is Nutrient-Rich(TM) Produce?

Problem: Scientific studies show the nutrient density of fruits and vegetables has significantly decreased since 1940, with nutrient losses as high as 81%.

Solution: Grow and consume Nutrient-RichTM produce. Think of the possibilities! What if one could select and grow a variety of food plants with genetics that produce maximum nutrition, such as vitamins, minerals and antioxidants? Then, what if one could give these plants everything they need to be able to express their genetic potentials? Wow! We could have some truly great food!

Fortunately, this work is beginning to be done. Some produce is being selected on the basis of phytonutrient density. And, yes, we have the technology to test for what the plants need to help them produce optimally. The resulting plants produce huge yields of wonderful tasting, Nutrient-RichTM food. Beyond that, some people have noticed that the produce has an incredibly long shelf life. Also, this is all accomplished in a very environmentally-friendly way.

Now let’s take this produce (which tastes so good that children select it over junk food) and feed it to humans. What are the possibilities? We start with full-spectrum mineral nutrition. Not just the minerals you read about on One-A-Day® and Centrum® bottles, but also many trace elements such as vanadium and strontium—elements often overlooked, but important for optimal health. Vitamin and antioxidant content is also higher in Nutrient-RichTM foods. There are many components to food—thousands of phytonutrients—many of which act as antioxidants, or perform other functions in the body such as assisting with cellular communication. The production of healthful and flavorful food compounds is maximized by the careful process of growing Nutrient-RichTM foods.

One interesting phenomenon shown in field reports and preliminary data is a difference in blood glucose response to fruits grown under the varying cultivation techniques. The fruits from the nutrient-balanced system showed a much flatter glucose response curve than the same cultivar of conventional fruits, which displayed the typical rapid glucose spiking and subsequent fall to a below-baseline hypoglycemic reading. The implications are especially important for people with diabetes and weight problems. One long-time researcher in the field feels that 70% of diseases could be prevented by regular consumption of nutrient-balanced foods.

This is an emerging field, ripe with possibilities! However, the research has only just begun. Funding of detailed, controlled research is needed to move Nutrient-RichTM foods forward into the mainstream so that millions of people and our environment will benefit.

For more information on Nutrient-RichTM foods contact:

Jana Bogs, DN, PhD (located on the Big Island of Hawaii)

Can Nutrient-Rich Foods Influence Weight Loss?

Aloha!

I have been interested in health and fitness since I was young, so I decided to become a nutritionist. After working in that field for a while, I realized that our foods are not as nutritious as they once were (there are several scientific studies proving this). Always being one to optimize, I decided to “go back to the dirt” and learn how to “create health from the soil up”. My thought is–“Perfect Soil, Perfect Food, Perfect Health”. I term my research “Going Beyond Organic to Nutrient-Rich”.

How does this relate to weight loss? My theory is that if the body is ideally nourished, it will be able to function optimally. We will feel great and not crave excessive food because we are nourished!