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Two Too Many?
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My father could be very silly and, when he was, we kids would react with loud groans. A favorite silly saying was, “Is one enough: is two too many?” This was pronounced when offered a helping of stewed prunes. My mother loved stewed prunes; thus, we had them often. Because my grandmother’s favorite topic seemed to be about our bowels — in homage to her idol, Dr. John Harvey Kellogg — we all knew that prunes were “good for our bowels.

As a kid I never thought about bowels and only occasionally during my mid-life did the subject come up. But as sure as arthritis, problems with elimination appear about the time gray hair and AARP make an appearance. By this time, I’m on more medications than I care to mention and the thought of adding a daily stool softener is not appealing.

There are natural ways to keep regular:
  • Drink plenty of water
  • Exercise
  • Eat fresh fruits and vegetables
But sometimes even those aren’t enough, so it’s time to bring on the prunes – or dried plums as some say. And instead of choosing between one or two, I eat three a day. And it works. The container sits right on my kitchen counter as a daily reminder.

Prunes help with more than irregularity.
  • Researchers from Tufts University rated prunes number one in terms of antioxidant capacity (www.healwithfood.org/health-benefits/prunes.php)
  • Packed with dietary fiber with 100 grams of prunes containing approximately 6.1 grams of fiber
  • May reverse osteoporosis in post-menopausal women according to a Florida State University study (www.healwithfood.org/health-benefits/prunes.php)
  • Has a low glycemic Index rating due to high fiber, fructose, and sorbitol content appears to improve overall blood glucose control in people with diabetes (www.livestrong.com/article/510344-what-are-the-medical-benefits-of-prunes
  • Contains sorbitol, a mild colonic stimulant that helps reduce the transit time of stool
  • Promotes a sense of satisfied fullness after a meal by slowing the rate at which food leaves the stomach
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By Dee Litten Reed. Copyright © 2013 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines.

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