Food: banana: a good source of fibre?

More lifestyle self-tutoring: the tutor mentions the fibre content of a banana.

A typical banana has around 100 calories, with 2.6g of fibre.

Suggested fibre intake might be 14g per 1000 calories, or 1.4g per 100 calories. The banana offers nearly twice that amount of fibre: I’d call it a good source fibre.


Jack of Oracle Tutoring by Jack and Diane, Campbell River, BC.

Lifestyle, health: sleep: do hours before midnight count for double?

More lifestyle self-tutoring: the tutor begins research about the question of sleep quality before midnight vs after.

I first heard the adage “hours of sleep before midnight count for double” from a judo coach. I trust he’s probably right, though I’ve no specific idea why.

Today I started looking for a reason and encountered, where I read interesting logic that supports the claim of hours slept before midnight counting for double those after.

Olivia’s point is that the functions of sleep – starting with falling into proper sleep – are energy-expensive. Hence, the reason that when overtired, actually falling asleep can be difficult.

Olivia observes, then, that during the hours before midnight, you still have energy “left over” from the day. If you spend that energy in a productive, wakeful activity between 9pm and midnight, your body won’t have it to invest in sleep past midnight.

Olivia’s claim sounds logical to me. I know that going to bed an hour earlier, then waking an hour earlier, seems easier than staying up another hour when I’m tired.

I hope to pursue the sleep-before-midnight concept in future posts:)


Jack of Oracle Tutoring by Jack and Diane, Campbell River, BC.

Biology, nursing: what is blood plasma?

Tutoring biology, you might be asked about blood plasma. The tutor mentions its defintion.

blood plasma:

the liquid that holds the red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. The plasma consists of water and substances suspended or dissolved therein: proteins, salts, etc.

Plasma does not include blood cells or platelets.


Mader, Sylvia S. Inquiry into Life, 9th ed. Toronto: McGraw-Hill, 2000.

Jack of Oracle Tutoring by Jack and Diane, Campbell River, BC.

Health: what is cortisol and what does it do, part 0

Researching the human body can mean continual self-tutoring. The tutor begins about the critical hormone cortisol.

Cortisol is a hormone produced by the adrenal glands. Its release is augmented when the person feels stress. It has many effects; what follows is one mechanism in which it participates. The first two points are necessary background, while the third explains a function of cortisol:

  1. The human body interprets stress as physical danger rather than a social condition.
  2. Neither brain cells nor exercising skeletal muscle cells need insulin for glucose uptake. However, as I understand, fat cells do need insulin to import glucose.
  3. Cortisol increases blood sugar but inhibits insulin secretion and possibly even insulin sensitivity. Doing so channels the glucose (blood sugar) towards use by the muscles and brain, rather than by the fat cells (which would change it to fat for storage). Therefore, under stress, the muscles and brain have access to lots of energy so they can respond.

I hope to talk more about cortisol:)


Jack of Oracle Tutoring by Jack and Diane, Campbell River, BC.

Zinc: supplement?

Fitness and health involve constant self-tutoring. The tutor mentions zinc.

Apparently, zinc is lost in sweat: during athletic performance, therefore, a person might likely lose some.

I take zinc supplement – not every day, but most days. I just take 25mg.


Jack of Oracle Tutoring by Jack and Diane, Campbell River, BC.

Cholesterol: hdl vs ldl

More lifestyle tutoring: the tutor continues to research cholesterol.

Perhaps many of us have heard that HDL is the “good” cholesterol, while LDL is the “bad”. What’s the difference?

HDL: collects cholesterol from the blood and conveys it to the liver, where it will be cleansed from the body.

LDL: conveys cholesterol to an artery, where it may be deposited to form plaque. As a result, the artery wall thickens, while its room for blood passage decreases.


Jack of Oracle Tutoring by Jack and Diane, Campbell River, BC.

Lifestyle, nutrition, health: Fibre battle: apple vs orange

More lifestyle self-tutoring: the tutor researches which fruit – apple or orange – has more fibre.

Just before bed I tend to eat fruits and/or vegetables if I haven’t had enough during the day. One reason to eat fruits/vegetables is for fibre.

I’ve been wondering which fruit has more fibre – apple, or orange?

Apparently, they are dead equal, both averaging 2.4g fibre per 100g.

Oranges can be much easier to eat, though, especially when you’re not hungry but need to consume your daily allotment of produce.


Jack of Oracle Tutoring by Jack and Diane, Campbell River, BC.

Lifestyle, health: MSG (monosodium glutamate): is it best avoided?

Engaging in more lifestyle self-tutoring, the tutor shares his findings about a topic he’s long considered: consumption of MSG.

MSG, I was told as a kid by a cook, can intensify the taste of food. Another kid, sitting at the table as well, said he’d been advised to avoid it.

For decades I’ve followed my old friend’s counsel (although I haven’t seen him for decades): I’ve tried to avoid consuming MSG. Often, one food will have it but a similar food won’t, so I pick the one without.

Today I checked the mayo clinic as well as healthline. To me, they both render the same opinion: MSG has been suspected to cause problems, but there’s no hard evidence it does. Some people may be sensitive to it.

Joe Leech at healthline points out that MSG is often used in processed foods, the likes of which are best consumed sparingly. Someone who eats a good diet, therefore, doesn’t likely consume much MSG, so probably needn’t worry unless they find, in their own case, that they’re sensitive.

Jack of Oracle Tutoring by Jack and Diane, Campbell River, BC.

Health: does zinc help with eczema?

Maintaining health can mean self-tutoring. The tutor shares his own experience with zinc.

About twenty years ago I read a great book about health. I think it was by a doctor from Seattle, but can’t recall the title or his name.

In that book the doctor stated that, from his point of view, Americans often have low zinc. He said much else as well, of course, but low zinc was a recurring theme. He often advised his patients to take a zinc supplement.

As a 47-year veteran of this body, I know I tend to develop eczema in the fall. However, taking zinc seems almost to nullify it. A few weeks back my eczema began in earnest. I bought some zinc and started taking it; within a week the eczema was just a hint.

I wash my hands many times per day, so eczema can hit me hard. However, it’s settled down to just a hint of roughness on the wrists, with no redness or itching. I credit the zinc.

Looking at the Mayo Clinic’s website today, they seem to report unclear scientific evidence that zinc can help eczema. Maybe it doesn’t work for everyone, but it seems to for me.


Jack of Oracle Tutoring by Jack and Diane, Campbell River, BC.

Biology: what is the most contagious disease among humans?

Tutoring biology, diseases are mentioned. The tutor names perhaps the most contagious one.

Measles is potentially the most contagious disease among humans. In particular, all children in a natural, unvaccinated population will catch it.1

When I was a kid, I heard about measles, but didn’t catch it. I believe I was immunized against it at some point. I never hear about it now, likely because children are typically vaccinated.

Measles can be fatal, by complication to pneumonia or swelling of the brain.


1Mader, Sylvia S. Inquiry into Life, 11th ed. Toronto: McGraw Hill, 2006.

Jack of Oracle Tutoring by Jack and Diane, Campbell River, BC.