Weight loss: what is the glycemic index of potato chips?

Self-tutoring about weight loss and health: the tutor gets specific about the GI of one of his guilty favourites.

Potato chips: glycemic index (GI): approx 54

In my post from June 16, 2017 I mention that a rating of ≤55 is low.

Apparently, potato chips have low glycemic index:)



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

Weight loss: does dietary fat help burn fat?

Self-tutoring about diet and weight loss: the tutor investigates the idea that eating fat helps burn fat.

Although the idea that eating fat helps fat loss might seem surprising, it’s apparently valid, provided the eater subtracts carbohydrates to accommodate increased fat intake.

A few reasons are proposed for why eating fat (rather than carbohydrates) can help lose fat:

  1. Eating fat can increase the rate at which the body burns calories.
  2. Eating fat for energy, rather than carbohydrates, decreases insulin levels. Higher insulin levels prevent fat burning, while low levels of it promote fat burning.
  3. Your predominant energy food becomes the one your body predominantly runs on. If it’s fat, your body’s hormones adjust to use it – both incoming and stored.

It could be mentioned here that some fats are better than others. I’ve come to believe that trans fats are to be avoided. (I also try to avoid processed snacks.) However, whether fat is dairy or vegetable oil matters little to me. Some people have more specific opinions.




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

Lifestyle: Parksville

Self-tutoring about traveling on Vancouver Island: the tutor comments on his stay in Parksville.

Parksville has given me a wonderful week.

I find the people here friendly and considerate. Last night, I was crossing at a corner. Someone was waiting behind me to make a left turn. They did not enter the intersection until I was on the sidewalk at the other side. Such politeness might be surprising, but not in Parksville.

Wherever I go here, the people I meet say “Hello” and wish me a good day.

The other night, walking home, I saw a business all lit up as if it were open. Yet I was sure it wasn’t, given the lateness of the hour. I looked inside. Two men were playing a board game after closing up shop. Making hand gestures, they were absorbed in conversation as they set up the game. It might have been a sight from another era…unless you’re here.

Everywhere in Parksville, the people have buoyed me during a very busy week. It will be tempting to return here….

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

Holidays: why is Black Friday Nov 23, 2018 (and not Nov 30)?

Self-tutoring about holidays: the tutor checks the answer to a question he’s wondered about.

I would have said that Black Friday is typically later than Nov 23. Furthermore, I believed it was the last Friday of November. While most years I’d probably be right, Black Friday is not defined that way. Rather, it’s defined as the Friday after Thanksgiving (US), which is defined as the fourth Thursday in November.

November 2018 began on Thursday, so it has five, its fourth being November 22 and Thanksgiving in the US. Black Friday 2018 must then be November 23, the Friday following United States Thanksgiving.




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

Cooking: buttermilk pancakes

Self-tutoring about cooking: the tutor shares a recipe he found for a celebrated breakfast.

Today, for my kids and their friends, is a day off from school. Therefore, last night, they each had a friend sleep over.

My tutoring business is in-house, so I don’t leave in the morning. However, my wife does, so I got up with her and went through the morning routine. Over coffee, she mentioned a few ideas for the kids’ breakfast, then left for work.

I approached the kids around 9am, asking if they were hungry. They answered yes, so I offered bagel and cream cheese, which would be ready in 5 minutes. They declared they were willing to wait – for pancakes.

Last Sunday my wife noticed a quart of buttermilk for $1. It was a great price, to be sure, so we took one. This morning I decided to make the kids pancakes, putting the buttermilk to use.

Here’s the recipe I used – it’s easy to follow. The kids seemed to like the pancakes – all four sat down to breakfast together and shared a lively conversation in which the pancakes were never mentioned. So often, no news is good news:)

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

Lifestyle: my low-GI habit

Self-tutoring about weight loss: the tutor shares a great find about milk chocolate.

I mention glycemic index (GI) in my posts here and here. It measures the rise in blood sugar a certain food may cause, relative to glucose (for glucose, GI=100). Generally speaking, low GI foods are recommended over high ones. Low GI means less than or equal to 55.

Believe it or not, milk chocolate is low GI, landing below 50.

Interesting, eh?




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

Lifestyle: Halloween reflections, 2018

Self-tutoring about Halloween and holidays: the tutor examines special occasions such as Halloween.

Halloween examines the dead and the supernatural – what might lurk beyond what we can see. It stimulates the imagination. The decorations and costumes are appealing and exciting, but why?

Likely, most people don’t believe in witches, ghosts, etc – or if they do, they don’t fear them. I love Halloween, but sometimes I wonder why we are all willing to get caught up in its theme, only to abandon it the next day, and for the rest of the year.

Perhaps Halloween helps people learn more about those around them. For instance, suppose you work with George, who’s okay at the job. However, at Halloween, he really amazes you with his costume.

People can do that – they can seem ordinary, yet show surprising inspiration and creativity at occasions such as Halloween. When you see them do it, you realize they have hidden talents. Next, I’m left wondering what other qualities people have that I just don’t notice.

Looking at people’s jack-o-lanterns and decorated houses, you get the privilege of seeing something they’ve taken time and effort to show. In day-to-day life, people don’t often try to be spectacular, even if they can be. At Halloween, they might put in that bit extra to reveal their artistic, creative side that they probably think nobody will appreciate any other time.

Happy Halloween:)

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

Yard work: October reflections

Self-tutoring about yard work: the tutor follows a family tradition.

Although I’m trying to reform, I haven’t done much yard work these past few years. Perhaps absurdly, I did much more ten years ago, when we didn’t even have a garden. Now we have one, yet I do much less.

When you’re not involved with something every day, you can lose your place, so have trouble knowing where to start. Today I mowed the back yard first, then looked at the leaves out front, under both ours and the neighbours’ oak trees.

I’ve beheld those fallen oak leaves for many days; we haven’t had a powerful south wind that would blow them away. I decided to rake them, then till them into the garden patches in the back yard.

Collecting the leaves into the wheelbarrow, then walking them to the back yard, next digging them in, took about two hours. While doing so, I reflected about my father doing the same in our family garden back in the Annapolis Valley in the early ’80s (see my post here). There, we had maple and oak trees, and others: autumn leaves were plentiful. Much as I did today, Dad would collect them, then till them into the soil. There’s one main difference: he used a rototiller, whereas I use a shovel.

Dad observed next fall, when he dug the soil to bury that year’s leaves, the buried leaves from the previous fall were gone. He even recalled that, when planting in the spring, the buried leaves had been noticeably reduced. During the winter, organisms in the soil, including earthworms, perhaps, consumed much of them. He acknowledged the idea to be surprising, since we were in the Annapolis Valley, where winter is typically cold for a few months, and very cold for a few weeks. Somehow, while the soil seemed locked in frost, decomposition continued. He mused that perhaps, under the soil’s surface, the decomposition of the leaves produced enough heat to be self-sustaining through winter.

Like any gardener, I patiently await the soil’s development this winter:)

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

Lifestyle: garter snake in the garden

Self-tutoring about garter snakes and gardening: the tutor shares about garter snakes.

Until 2012, I used to see snakes fairly often in the yard. Since, I’ve wondered where they’ve gone. After all, reptiles are sensitive creatures whose presence usually suggests environmental health. Furthermore, to my knowledge, we have no poisonous snakes on Vancouver Island. Therefore, a snake here is never a worry:)

A couple weeks back, I finally encountered a garter snake in the garden, to my relief. Maybe they’ve been here all along, but hiding? Perhaps we’ve just been missing each other. Anyway, there it was, alarmed at first, but soon much less timid.

The snake might have been 45cm, brown with red stripes down its sides; I suspect it to be northwestern garter snake.

I decided to research what benefits, etc, accompany snake presence in the garden. Apparently they eat anything they can – rodents (which would have to be very small for the snake I saw), grasshoppers, slugs, etc. Early last evening I observed slugs emerging: I hope that snake is taking notice:)





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

Composting: putting rhubarb leaves in the compost

Self-tutoring about composting: the tutor shares a find about composting rhubarb leaves.

Rhubarb leaves are poisonous. Yet, can they be composted? The other day I noticed someone advising not to.

I had assumed rhubarb leaves are compostable, and I’ve found several sources that agree.





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