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2017 Edition

 

Posted August 21, 2016

My Family Fitness/Nutrition

This page was meant to be creative writing, more cynically entertaining and not extreme in actual practice.  This posting was written as an appeal to be understood as moderate and modern. I admittedly eat unusual foods like raw soybeans (edamame), seaweed (nori), beets and beet leaves, raw oatmeal and pure maple syrup, blueberries and mango; and I do not eat food that was unclean in the Bible even before Moses’ Law or Noah’s Flood—not for legal reasons but for discretionary reasons. I list these below. But I want my friends, neighbors, and schoolteachers of my children to see that there is reasonableness behind my dietary choices even though they may seem backward to you if you were raised eating raccoons and possums  in Missouri. I am not into processed health food like tofu, polenta, hummus, and soy milk. I am not a vegetarian—almost but not quite.

I have not had medical insurance for myself or for my dependants in twenty years, until recently through happenstance.  Eating healthfully is less expensive than insurance, medicine, surgery, and care.

I do think that I have found the fountain of youth, or at least the keys to being healthy and raising strong and intelligent children. There are three keys:

(1)

In the final analysis, our bodies store calories (energy) as fat. If we intake greater calories than we burn, we gain weight that day; if we intake fewer calories than we burn, we lose weight that day (so eat less). If we burn greater calories than we intake, we lose weight that day; if we burn few calories than we intake, we gain weight that day (so exercise more). If we lose weight for any reason, our bodies will be hungry. Therefore, we cannot lose weight without being hungry. We will survive being hungry. When I learned this, my weight fell to what it was shortly after I graduated from high school.
 

(2)

Our bodies burn a ratio of calories and oxygen, our heart rates represents the delivery of that oxygen, and our breathing speed represents how much oxygen our hearts are demanding for delivery and therefore how many calories our bodies are burning. We must do whatever we can do to burn calories the fastest. Therefore, we should do whatever makes us breathless. I run. We should run if we can, walk if we can, or type if we can.  Move. And I run in the winter because calories are used for heat, and besides we should exercise beyond summer and the first week after the New Year.
 

(3)

Eat whole food. Eat it the way God created it. Eat it the way that nature created it. Eat it the way that humans have eaten it for thousands of years of natural selection. Any way you cut it, whole foods fit the human body for fitness. This means skipping processed food, refined food, additives, and empty calories. Cargill, Monsanto, Conagra, and ADM could use their corn syrup, corn oil, and corn dogs to fatten up the orphans of Africa and Asia instead of America adults, if charitable people giving food aid created the economic demand.

I recognize that by following the scriptures that we have a promise of health, intelligence, and endurance. I was a director of restaurants for a major hotel company, and love to cook with whole foods—except my sashimi, which I want cut with a sharp knife. My children were raised with a plentiful variety of healthful choices, and were never required to eat anything they did not like, but simply not offered that which was innutritious. They were acculturated to like vegetables and salads, local and exotic fruits, white milk and brown bread instead of brown milk and white bread, 100% everything because I love them 100%, just as the children of any foreign country prefer the food of their parents through imitation like language. My mother bought bulk food from a health food coop, particularly whole grains including oatmeal, rice, and beans. My mother and grandmother always had vegetable gardens. My mother baked heavy bread, and canned fruits and vegetables in our kitchen. My father taught me how to find wild plants to eat in the forest. My grandparents taught me how to fish, fillet a fish, and sauté a fish.

My children and I love French, Spanish, Italian, Mediterranean, Middle Eastern, and Japanese cuisine; and the children love to cook and experiment with me, or eat wherever we can find fresh, gourmet, and ethnic whole foods. We love to shop at health food stores and the City Market. We emphasize moderation in all things; a wide variety of foods filled with known and also yet-unidentified vitamins, minerals, flavenoids, phytochemicals, and antioxidants; and highly diversified food sources and originations to avoid toxins.

We are also an exercising family. We workout together. We all run for fitness. We hike for fitness. We each have a gym membership at 24-Hour Fitness. Each of them participates in other sports. We do recreational activities as a family. Running races was an ancient Biblical activity (Psalms 19:5 and 119:21, Isaiah 40:31, Jeremiah 12:5), and Paul speaks of running races at least a half-dozen times in four different works as allegorical for spiritual races, most notably 1 Corinthians 9:24: “Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain.”

So, I am actually quite moderate and tolerant, giving my children the freedom to enjoy whatever God has created for our use, in purity of form, with thankfulness—often erring through human weakness, but always trying to be stronger.


What we try our best to eat:

Fresh or frozen colorful and organic vegetables, of great variety and diversity:

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Cooked

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Raw

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Soups

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Salads

Cooking vegetables, grains, nuts, and pulse (beans) breaks down the plant cell walls to release minerals, activate vitamins, and amplify antioxidants; and to improve eatability, palatability, and digestion; so does fermentation (saurkraut) and sprouting (bean sprouts and grains).

Fresh fruits (especially vine fruits), or frozen fruits, of great variety and diversity

Fruits have fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants that fruit juices lack.

Whole grains (especially whole wheat, bulgur, and wild rice), great variety and diversity, and low cost.

100% whole wheat bread, not just wheat bread; preferably the kind that you can see the grain and seeds.

Meat in extreme moderation (virtually none in hot weather):

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Beef and buffalo, appropriate for Kansas City and Independence, Missouri.  Of course, preferring grass-fed meat which is free of added hormones and antibiotics. 

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Lamb and goat, as Mediterranean cuisine.

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Deer, moose, elk, antelope, etc., appropriate where I was raised in Minnesota and now living on the prairies of Missouri.

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Any singing birds

I am really not sure if sure whether chickens and domesticated turkeys existed in Bible lands and times, but roosters are known for sounding prettier than hens. Hens and their chickens are a parable for the people of God in the Bible, but many birds are called hens and their young were called chickens, particularly partridges.

Fish (with scales and fins), great variety and diversity, and wide-ranging water sources

My personal favorites are sashimi, ceviche, rare wild-caught salmon, seared ahi tuna, Minnesota walleye, and Lake Michigan whitefish.

Certain shellfish such as clean bivalve mollusks that move in flowing water, like clams and scallops
 

Grass-fed white milk, and organic eggs from free-ranging hens.

“A land that floweth with milk and honey” is an expression throughout the Bible. Butter is repeatedly symbolic of prosperity in the Bible. Jesus spoke a parable about giving an egg to someone who wants one (Luke 11:12). Ten cheeses are also favored in 1 Sam. 17:18 and cow cheese in 2 Sam. 17:29.

Yogurt should have one ingredient—milk—so add your own additives like frozen wild Michigan blueberries.  Yogurt should have active yogurt cultures.  Sour milk is lower in fat than sour cream.

Natural sweeteners:

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Raw honey

Honeycomb and honey are favorites in the Bible, eaten by royal King David who dined on honey, butter, and cheese with his beef steak, wise King Solomon who ate honeycomb and honey together calling them good, prophetic John the Baptist who was clothed in fur and leather while eating gourmet foods like locusts and wild honey, and all-knowing Jesus Christ who ate broiled fish with honeycomb (2 Sam. 17:29, Proverbs 24:13, Song. 5:1, Matthew 3:4, and Luke 24:42).

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Pure maple syrup, from real trees in Palmyra, New York.

There is something authentic about using what God has created  that has been abridged into a concentration of pure nourishment from a true tree.

Raw sugar cane, from a Caribbean island.

God made beets sweet as an incentive to eat the beets, but agribusiness has centrifugally refined sugar from plants, discarding the nutrients and fiber from beets and cane, and they should be beet with a cane.

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Molasses

Sugar is made by spinning off the molasses, because Americans feel purer if they can make white sugar out of black syrup, but the nutrients are spun off and the calories have to be run off.

Sea salt and other gourmet unrefined salts from ancient sea beds that have a naturally occurring proportion of all minerals in addition to sodium chloride.

I believe that salt is essential to maintain proper blood pressure, based on scriptures. Jesus said: “Salt is good: but if the salt have lost his saltness, wherewith will ye season it? Have salt in yourselves, and have peace one with another.” (Luke 14:34).

Cold-pressed extra-virgin olive oil
 

Spring water


What we usually avoid eating or consuming:

Using the Bible as a historic text of what humans have evolved to eat, I generally avoid animals that were considered Biblically unclean as a matter of history among modern humans (before the added law of Moses, see Genesis 7: 2, 8; 8:20; Leviticus 11; and Deuteronomy 14), particularly scavengers.  I am practically a vegetarian (and one of my daughters is a vegan), so I am just listing the meats that are most unappealing to me, fully realizing that among the upper classes many of these meats are considered fine culinary delicacies:
 

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Pigs, hogs, and wild boars

I am nearly a vegetarian. Most meat I just do not eat.  This little essay on pork is meant to be creatively comical, not intense.

Beef is the meat of choice in my center place, at the start of the ox trails of the Sante Fe Trail, the California Trail, and the Oregon Trail; and at Kansas City, the end of the cattle trails from Texas through Kansas; and where the American bison once roamed; this is Kansas City strip steak land, and BBQ beef country.

Most Christians love bacon and ham, which is perplexing.  Jesus, the fulfiller of the Law, still did not speak kindly of swine in Matthew 7:6, 8:32, and Luke 15:15. As Paul said, “All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not.” (1 Corinthians 10:23). Swine carry diseases including the swine flu (which killed 50-100 million people in the pandemic of 1918); they are omnivorous (eating other animals); they are fattening, they oink, and they stink. They make pigpens, and they make lard. They are unclean.

I am not alone in this regard: I am united with Jews, Muslims, Seventh-day Adventists, vegetarians, heart patients, people on low-cholesterol diets, and people who do not like to get their calories from fat. The followers of Moses, and the followers of Abraham (who preceded the Law of Moses), do not eat pork. Pork originated in faithless nations: the Chinese domesticated the wild boar like domesticating a wild bear—but Muslims, Jews, and Christians were supposed to know better when the Chinese introduced the pig snout into Eastern Europe.

Iowa, Missouri, and Arkansas people think that not eating pork is peculiar, because this is pig farmer country. But their local, state, and federal governments subsidize the conspirators (pork councils and pork boards), who have marketed pork as the “other white meat”, which is dishonest since it is a red meat. Dishonest junk mail is called spam, and junk meat is called spam. Fat congressional spending that goes to waste is called pork, and fat meat that goes to your waist is called pork.

This is Kansas City, the BBQ rib center of the world.  And although beef is king, everywhere considered superior to pork, people do serve pork to the unaware for its lower cost.  Here, if a kindergartener asks whether or not a hot dog is pork, the cafeteria worker answers, “No” if it is turkey and pork. If the kindergartener asks whether a pizza contains pork, they answer, “No, it is pepperoni”. They just do not get it—they cannot learn the definition of the word porcine if they cannot learn the definition of the word pork. One restaurant nearby sells only pork ribs and other pork items like those with ham, but the dining room is decorated with western saddles, lariats, and b&w photographs of cowboys on horses. I have never seen anyone lasso a pig on a pig ranch.

Multi-cultural cities like New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, or Dearborn all serve all-beef hotdogs, yet in Kansas City a steakhouse will invariably serve a salad without forewarning that ham or bacon is standard on all salads and vegetables. And the healthier the vegetable, the more ham or bacon its taste requires; so, green beans, cabbage, and spinach are all flavored with pork fat. Vegetarians need more legumes for protein, but KC baked beans have have their token one gram piece of pork fat. Here, if you order a $25 filet mignon, it might be wrapped in a piece of 10¢ bacon. Here, if you order seared $20 ahi tuna, or $15 wild caught salmon, or even $10 vegetarian eggplant parmesan, they will still deliver a salad topped with 10¢ worth of red meat.

Even the pet food aisle of the grocery store aisle demonstrates the inferior quality of pork with its labels of “real beef”, “real lamb”, and “real chicken”, but pork is not fit even to feed to dogs. A hot dog should be dog food, and cat fish should be cat food. Ham needs to be smoked or honey-baked to make it eatable. Most sausage is filled with sugar, salt, spices, and chemical preservatives and chemical flavors because it is otherwise unpalatable or contains bacteria and viruses. Pigskin is kicked around as a football, but the finest books are bound in calf, sheep, or goat (morocco).

So, please understand that I do not want any pork in my house, and that it is not unusual outside of suburban Kansas City where we regularly travel. My reasons are not so much that I think that God forbids it, but matters of intellectualism. You probably do not eat animals like aardvarks, anteaters, or armadillos, and that is just the A-list animals with snouts. I choose not to eat wild boars, which are considered similar in many cultures, if not mine. Each time that a restaurant tries to process it into my salad, vegetables, sandwich, or pasta, my annoyance at cultural naiveté increases.

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Ducks and geese

Incidentally, foie gras is the fattier liver paté of a force-fed and overfed abused duck or goose, a politically incorrect product of France increasingly banned in other renaissance countries.

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Alligators, frogs, turtles, etc.

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Rabbits, kangaroos, and lamas: which do not chew their cud and have divided hooves.

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Squirrels, possums, raccoons, and all of those foods popular from the Appalachians to the Ozarks in the way that pork is popular from Texas to Iowa.

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Catfish, eel, dolphin and other fish without fins and scales.

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Snails (escargot), oysters, and mussels and the filth that they filter from unclean waters .

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Other scavengers generally.

This is easier than a vegetarian diet, and everyone in my family has been a vegetarian at one time or another.

Of course you do not believe in eating all meats, and neither do we. We do not eat “cats or rats, dogs or hogs, horses or porpoises”.

Drugs:

This is a factual list of unhealthy products, essentially just a definitive list of anything addictive, with some cute comments.  I do not believe that any of these items is inherently sinful or against any commandment of God.  Just nature.

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Any addictive substance

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Any mind-altering substance, however mild

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Any behavioral stimulants, however mild

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Ethanol (strong drinks)

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Excessive or nonessential use of medicines or vaccinations, or other drugs with side effects

I know that depression is debilitating for many Americans and I am not insensitive to that fact, or their useful purposes. Seemingly, a quarter of American adults are taking antidepressants. However, I am usually anti-anti-depressants. For most people, depression is a renaming of what people historically called disappointment. Antidepressants have affected my life through the lives of those all around me. Antidepressants make us indifferent and complacent. Antidepressants make us stop tackling our problems and make nothing seem critical or timely. Antidepressants take the highs and lows away from every emotion that God had himself when we were created in his own image—whether love, anger, indignation, wrath, hatred, fury, and revenge (those are in the Bible as attributes of God) and I might add to those both sorrow and joy, and crying and repentance. Antidepressants make us lose connectivity with our families, because they dull our passions and cares while we can still be devoted to the mechanics of family activities. Antidepressants make us stop being depressed about our bills. Antidepressants make us stop worrying about our jobs, and make us lose our jobs. Antidepressants make us procrastinate. Antidepressants make us stop worrying about our future. Once our lives are ruined, we are even more depressed and are given a higher dosage. Antidepressants even make us care too little to bother with researching the side effects of our antidepressants. The last two details are what makes the pharmaceutical companies so successful. Even people at the FDA are taking antidepressants.

Alcohol

I have been a beverage manager, banquet manager, fine dining manager, room service manager, and dance club manager for companies like Hyatt Regency Hotels. I am a historian who knows about wineries, breweries, and distilleries. I know about oak and cork, and I know about barley and hops. I know the difference between port and sherry, between a varietal and a region, and between a vineyard and a vintage. I understand the concept of describing alcohol using ethnicities, heritages, and cultures. I realize that your alcohol comes from a specific region of a certain country with a historical context, soils, botanicals, and herbs. But I also know something about marketing, and all of that science is simply being used for product differentiation, as is using creative recipes, flavors, colors, garnishes, and stemware to make ethanol more appealing. In the end, ethanol is ethanol. Distilling is undoubtedly worse than the essential fermenting of wine or beer as a preservative in ancient times before I owned a refrigerator. Even so, drinking wine for the antioxidants improves your nutrition, but not as much as eating grapes which contain fiber instead of alcohol. Studies on health benefits of wine do not consider that most Americans are merely deficient in the vitamins and other nutrients contained in dark fruits, not deficient in alcohol. Feeding beer to starving children in Darfur would improve their nutrition too, since they lack calories, but nobody would consider giving them beer rather than porridge or polenta. Americans do not need the carbohydrates from beer, they need the fiber and protein from bran and germ. They do not need the alcohol in wine, they need the antioxidants from pomegranates and cherries that could be replanted over vineyards if Americans created the economic demand.

Tobacco

Comment should be unnecessary. Cuban cigars are as sophisticated as Cognac brandy or Kentucky bourbon, used by those who fancy themselves as having discriminating taste. However, real refinement requires enlightenment not lighting up.

Caffeine:
 

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In hot drinks

Coffee (caffeine)

Tea (theophylline)

Hot chocolate (theobromine)
 

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In cold drinks

Iced tea

Iced coffee and iced cappuccino

Coke®

Pepsi®

Mountain Dew®

Many other soft drinks, including some root beer and orange sodas
 

 Some states have now outlawed soft drinks in all schools.
 

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Chocolate

This is America’s romantic drug and the legal drug for your children. Chocolate contains caffeine and other caffeine-like addictive stimulants, mainly theobromine.

Chocolate tastes so good only after the addition of milk and sugar.

They call it devil’s food cake instead of angel food cake for a reason, they call it sinfully delicious for a reason, and they call it decadent chocolate for a reason. The addictive properties are described as your craving, temptation, or obsession. Withdrawal causes temper tantrums in children, and road rage in adults; withdrawal causes irritability, fatigue, inability to concentrate, and migraine headaches. Since most people do not get chocolate in a consistent flow, as do those who get their drugs from coffee, most chocolate eaters are in daily withdrawal for years.

I have heard all of the anti-oxidant arguments about coffee and chocolate, but a handful of almonds or pecans has the same anti-oxidants without the caffeine and instead an increase in fiber, vitamins, and protein.

Hot drinks:
 

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Including all hot drinks, not just caffeinated hot drinks

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Decaffeinated coffee or herb tea

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Postum® (a grain drink, formerly a Post® cereal brand but now a Kraft® brand)

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Hot chocolate

I listed hot chocolate for its temperature alone, assuming that you do not believe that it has caffeine and/or caffeine-like theobromine.

There is more, and it is about coffee shops and chocolate: I already knew spiritually that hot drinks were not for our bodies, which are the temple of the holy ghost (1 Corinthians 3: 16; 6: 13, 19). I already knew scientifically that caffeine, theophylline, and theobromine are carcinogens, addictive stimulants, and mind-altering drugs. I already knew from my marketing education exactly why the Starbucks message is so successful. I already knew from my life experience that world culture must be deeper than drinking from a plastic lid sippy cup on Earth Day simply because your cup is called cozy names like Caffe, Mocha, Latte, or Frappaccino and you are drinking your antioxidants for health while eating their Cinnamon Toffee Crunch Loaf.

But this is the latest for me: I cannot ignore world news reports that 15,000 children are enslaved in the Ivory Coast of Africa. I love the orphans around the world—whether in China, the Pacific Islands, Mexico, or Eastern Europe. Would you whip children into carrying sacks of beans for one hundred hours per week without wages, for a “relaxing” of cappuccino or espresso? How is that relaxing for them? Are you reading this and sitting down comfortably while they are falling down on their knees? Can you support the selling of children and still feel spiritual, cultured, and trendy while drinking at Starbucks and other cafes with your Christian friends?

All of the money spent by Americans on gourmet coffees and in trendy coffee houses probably exceeds the annual food budget of some continents.

Aspartame and Sucralose:

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Sugar substitutes like NutraSweet®, Equal®, and Splenda®

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Children’s toothpaste and vitamins

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Diet soft drinks

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Sugar-free gum and candy

These cause dizziness in airline pilots. My daughter, Samantha, is allergic to and gets dizzy spells from aspartame.

Corn syrup

Corn syrup is one of the great agribusiness deceptions in history, alone accounting for all of the excess calories eaten in the world: added to soda pop, cereal, tomato sauce, salad dressing, and, well, everything. So, the next time that you drink something that is 5% fruit juice, remember that it is 95% theft of your nutrients by the manufacturer and that you need to drink 20 glasses of cocktail/drink to get the same nutrients as one glass of juice. Of course, you have to drink an infinite (literally) amount of soda pop to get any nutrients whatsoever, so soda pop goes completely to waste and waist measurement. Even 100% juice is like eating white bread, having removed the vitamin and antioxidant rich skins and the fiber, but it is incomprehensible that people would accept 5% juice drinks.

Hydrogenated oils or saturated fats :

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Canola oil

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Vegetable oil

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Soybean oil

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Corn oil

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Cottonseed oil

Super-heated oils are difficult to avoid completely unless you eliminate all processed foods and all restaurant foods. Incidentally, olive oil is from olives, peanut oil is from peanuts, but Canola oil is from another plant than its name. Canola oil is made from Canadian rapeseed, a plant with a history of health controversy, which was previously used for industrial lubricants; thus they chose to trademark it as Canola, for Canada oil.

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