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Posts Tagged ‘Coffee’

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Aaron E. Carroll answered readers’ questions about this article in a follow-up here.

When I was a kid, my parents refused to let me drink coffee because they believed it would “stunt my growth.” It turns out, of course, that this is a myth. Studies have failed, again and again, to show that coffee or caffeine consumption are related to reduced bone mass or how tall people are.

Coffee has long had a reputation as being unhealthy. But in almost every single respect that reputation is backward. The potential health benefits are surprisingly large.

When I set out to look at the research on coffee and health, I thought I’d see it being associated with some good outcomes and some bad ones, mirroring the contradictory reports you can often find in the news media. This didn’t turn out to be the case.

Image result for coffee

Just last year, a systematic review and meta-analysis of studies looking at long-term consumption of coffee and the risk of cardiovascular disease was published. The researchers found 36 studies involving more than 1,270,000 participants. The combined data showed that those who consumed a moderate amount of coffee, about three to five cups a day, were at the lowest risk for problems. Those who consumed five or more cups a day had no higher risk than those who consumed none.

Of course, everything I’m saying here concerns coffee — black coffee. I am not talking about the mostly milk and sugar coffee-based beverages that lots of people consume. These could include, but aren’t limited to, things like a McDonald’s large mocha (500 calories, 17 grams of fat, 72 grams of carbohydrates), a Starbucks Venti White Chocolate Mocha (580 calories, 22 grams of fat, 79 grams of carbs), and a Large Dunkin’ Donuts frozen caramel coffee Coolatta (670 calories, 8 grams of fat, 144 grams of carbs).

I won’t even mention the Cold Stone Creamery Gotta-Have-It-Sized Lotta Caramel Latte (1,790 calories, 90 grams of fat, 223 grams of carbs). Regular brewed coffee has 5 or fewer calories and no fat or carbohydrates.

Back to the studies. Years earlier, a meta-analysis — a study of studies, in which data are pooled and analyzed together — was published looking at how coffee consumption might be associated with stroke. Eleven studies were found, including almost 480,000 participants. As with the prior studies, consumption of two to six cups of coffee a day was associated with a lower risk of disease, compared with those who drank none. Another meta-analysis published a year later confirmed these findings.

Rounding out concerns about the effect of coffee on your heart, another meta-analysis examined how drinking coffee might be associated with heart failure. Again, moderate consumption was associated with a lower risk, with the lowest risk among those who consumed four servings a day. Consumption had to get up to about 10 cups a day before any bad associations were seen.

No one is suggesting you drink more coffee for your health. But drinking moderate amounts of coffee is linked to lower rates of pretty much all cardiovascular disease, contrary to what many might have heard about the dangers of coffee or caffeine. Even consumers on the very high end of the spectrum appear to have minimal, if any, ill effects.

A meta-analysis published in 2007 found that increasing coffee consumption by two cups a day was associated with a lower relative risk of liver cancer by more than 40 percent. Two more recent studiesconfirmed these findings. Results from meta-analyses looking at prostate cancer found that in the higher-quality studies, coffee consumption was not associated with negative outcomes.

Shots of espresso. The potential health benefits of coffee have been found to be surprisingly large.CreditKevork Djansezian/Getty Images

The same holds true for breast cancer, where associations were statistically not significant. It’s true that the data on lung cancer shows an increased risk for more coffee consumed, but that’s only among people who smoke. Drinking coffee may be protective in those who don’t. Regardless, the authors of that study hedge their results and warn that they should be interpreted with caution because of the confounding (and most likely overwhelming) effects of smoking.

A study looking at all cancers suggested that it might be associated with reduced overall cancer incidence and that the more you drank, the more protection was seen.

Drinking coffee is associated with better laboratory values in those at risk for liver disease. In patients who already have liver disease, it’s associated with a decreased progression to cirrhosis. In patients who already have cirrhosis, it’s associated with a lower risk of death and a lower risk of developing liver cancer. It’s associated with improved responses to antiviral therapy in patients with hepatitis C and better outcomes in patients with nonalcoholic fatty liver disease. The authors of the systematic review argue that daily coffee consumption should be encouraged in patients with chronic liver disease.

The most recent meta-analyses on neurological disorders found that coffee intake was associated with lower risks of Parkinson’s disease, lower cognitive decline and a potential protective effect against Alzheimer’s disease (but certainly no harm).

A systematic review published in 2005 found that regular coffee consumption was associated with a significantly reduced risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, with the lowest relative risks (about a third reduction) seen in those who drank at least six or seven cups a day. The latest study, published in 2014, used updated data and included 28 studies and more than 1.1 million participants. Again, the more coffee you drank, the less likely you were to have diabetes. This included both caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee.

Is coffee associated with the risk of death from all causes? There have been two meta-analyses published within the last year or so. The first reviewed 20 studies, including almost a million people, and the second included 17 studies containing more than a million people. Both found that drinking coffee was associated with a significantly reduced chance of death. I can’t think of any other product that has this much positive epidemiological evidence going for it.

I grant you that pretty much none of the research I’m citing above contains randomized controlled trials. It’s important to remember that we usually conduct those trials to see if what we are observing in epidemiological studies holds up. Most of us aren’t drinking coffee because we think it will protect us, though. Most of us are worrying that it might be hurting us. There’s almost no evidence for that at all.

If any other modifiable risk factor had these kind of positive associations across the board, the media would be all over it. We’d be pushing it on everyone. Whole interventions would be built up around it. For far too long, though, coffee has been considered a vice, not something that might be healthy.

That may change soon. The newest scientific report for the U.S.D.A. nutritional guidelines, which I’ve discussed before, says that coffee is not only O.K. — it agrees that it might be good for you. This was the first time the dietary guideline advisory committee reviewed the effects of coffee on health.

There’s always a danger in going too far in the other direction. I’m not suggesting that we start serving coffee to little kids. Caffeine still has a number of effects parents might want to avoid for their children. Some people don’t like the way caffeine can make them jittery. Guidelines also suggest that pregnant women not drink more than two cups a day.

I’m also not suggesting that people start drinking coffee by the gallon. Too much of anything can be bad. Finally, while the coffee may be healthy, that’s not necessarily true of the added sugar and fat that many people put into coffee-based beverages.

But it’s way past time that we stopped viewing coffee as something we all need to cut back on. It’s a completely reasonable addition to a healthy diet, with more potential benefits seen in research than almost any other beverage we’re consuming. It’s time we started treating it as such.

Written By: Aaron E. Carroll

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Coffee

The benefits of coffee have been the topic of a lot of news reports lately. It’s not just black water with caffeine. A growing body of research has shown coffee has many incredible health benefits beyond the morning caffeine pick me up.

Is coffee good for you? Yes! Studies have shown that that drinking coffee every day can help lower your risk of many serious health conditions and even help you feel better.

In this article we will discuss the health benefits of coffee, cover how much coffee you should drink per day,  and then I even provided some coffee drink recipes that can help you discover new ways of enjoying your daily coffee in a healthy way. So let’s get into it and see how coffee can positively affect your body and mind!

Health Benefits of Coffee

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Here are some amazing reasons why you should drink more coffee:

1. Coffee Raises Your Metabolism and Helps You Perform Better Physically

Studies have shown that drinking coffee can actually raise your metabolism and help you burn fat at a faster rate, thus positively affecting your weight loss. Caffeine does this by stimulating your nervous system, causing it to send signals to your fat cells to break down body fat.

It also has been shown to improve athletic performance and endurance during exercise.

Just these two reasons alone are awesome enough to drink more coffee, especially before heading to the gym!

2. Coffee Is a Great Sources of Antioxidants and Essential Nutrients

Believe it or not, coffee has a lot of nutritional value. It contains a number of essential nutrients, including riboflavin (11% of the RDA), pantothenic acid (6% of the RDA), manganese (3% of the RDA), potassium (3% of the RDA), magnesium (2% of the RDA) and niacin (2% of the RDA)

It’s also a HUGE source of antioxidants, and one of the top sources of antioxidants in the American diet. Antioxidants are substances that prevent or delay cell damage, and they can control how fast you age by fighting free radicals.

Translation…. Coffee makes you pretty and healthy!

So the next time you look at your coffee, remember it’s not just black water, it’s a tasty source of antioxidants and nutrients.

3. Coffee Can Help Prevent Diabetes

Diabetes, an enormous health problem everywhere with over 400 million sufferers, affects about 8% of adults over the age of 18 affected worldwide.

Studies show that people who drink coffee have a significantly lower risk of developing Type II diabetes. In one study, participants with a total daily consumption of at least three cups of coffee reduced the risk of type 2 diabetes by approximately 42%.

If you’re concerned about diabetes, you may want to start including coffee in your diet on a regular basis to improve your chances of preventing it. But make sure to limit the sugar you add and see below for my tips on healthy(er) sweeteners below.

4. Coffee Can Make You Smarter

Coffee contains a chemical called caffeine… yes, I know you know that, but did you know that caffeine is central nervous system stimulant?! When you drink coffee, the caffeine travels to the brain where it is responsible for enhancing the firing of the neurons and increasing energy metabolism throughout your brain.

The next time you need to study or take a test, try drinking a cup of coffee beforehand for a little extra mental edge.

5. May Help Prevent Liver Disease

If you drink alcohol on a regular basis, listen up!

Studies have shown that there is an ingredient in coffee that protects against a liver disease called cirrhosis. If you have never heard of cirrhosis before, it a condition where your liver tissue is damaged and replaced with scar tissue. It can develop several ways like from infections, obesity, and other conditions, but especially from drinking too much alcohol. Drinking coffee on a regular basis has been shown to be a natural detox to help protect against the onset of cirrhosis, especially alcoholic cirrhosis.

So while I don’t advocate drinking too much alcohol, I can recommend drinking coffee regularly if you do as a cleansing body detox and to help give your liver a little extra protection.

Coffee Benefits Heart Health

6. Coffee May Help Protect Against Heart Disease and Stroke

There have been studies that show that moderate coffee drinking lowered the risk of coronary heart disease in women.

Research has also shown that higher coffee consumption reduced the risks of cardiovascular disease and stroke.

Obviously, drinking coffee isn’t going to completely eliminate your chances of developing heart disease or having a stroke (you need good diet, lifestyle habits, and good genes as well). But if just adding coffee to your diet helps lower your risks, why not try it?

7. Caffeine May Lower Skin Cancer Risk

A study by the National Institute of Health found that higher coffee intake was associated with a modest decrease in risk of a certain type of skin cancer called melanoma.

If you’re concerned about your risk of skin cancer, try adding a few cups of coffee to your diet to help lower your risks. And don’t forget your SPF while you’re at it!

8. Caffeine Can Help Protect You From Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease

Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) is a type of disease that causes problems with your memory, thinking and behavior. Symptoms usually develop slowly and get worse over time, becoming severe enough to eventually interfere with daily tasks. If you’ve ever know somebody with AD or dementia, you know how devastating this condition can be, not just on the sufferer but to those around them as well.

Research has found that drinking 3-5 cups per day while in your middle aged years was associated with a decreased risk of Alzheimer’s and dementia by about 65% in your later years.

Did you get that?? A 65% reduction in your chances of developing dementia by drinking 3-5 cups of coffee a day! That is one of the most compelling arguments in favor of drinking coffee every day that’s I’ve even heard, especially if you’re in your 40’s and 50’s.

9. Coffee May Help Reduce Parkinson’s Disease Symptoms

Parkinson’s disease is a chronic disorder that involves the malfunction and death of certain nerve cells in the brain (neurons). It’s a progressive disease, meaning that symptoms get worse over time. The cause is unknown, and there is no cure.

Worldwide, nearly 7 million people are living with Parkinson’s disease.

Studies have shown that higher coffee and caffeine intake is associated with a significantly lower incidence of Parkinson’s Disease.

This benefit, along with the reduction in AD and dementia, make coffee an important part of your strategy to get older without losing your mental strength and clarity.

10. Coffee May Lower Your Risk of Being Depressed

Depression is a chronic and serious mood disorder that affects twice as many women as men. It causes severe symptoms that affect how you think, feel, and deal with day to day activities like sleeping, eating, or working. Approximately 20% of women will be affected by depression during their lifetime.

Studies have found that increased coffee consumption decreased the risk of depression.

It’s not entirely clear why this occurs, but it’s another great reason to drink coffee! So next time you’re “blue” treat yourself to a cup and if possible some nature and sunshine… which also helps reduce depression!

How Many Cups Of Coffee Should You Drink A Day

How Many Cups Of Coffee Should You Drink A Day?

Every one of these reasons tend to indicate that you should be drinking more than one cup of coffee a day for the best results.

According to research, it’s recommended that adults should consume 3-4 cups of coffee a day to realize the most health benefits.

Coffee Drink Recipes

Coffee Drink Recipes

If you’re looking for some new ways to enjoy coffee, try these delicious coffee drink recipes from my blog.

  • Almond Milk Latte
  • Blended Mocha Cappuccino

These two drinks tend to be on the sweeter side, so they may be best as a dessert treat and not a substitution for a plain old cup of black coffee in the morning. But feel free to experiment with new ideas and ingredients to expand your coffee drink options.

Just make sure you are not adding loads of sugar as that will just negate the benefits. If you are looking for diabetic friendly sweeteners for your “Morning Joe” try honey, real maple syrup or raw Stevia, and try to add as little as possible so you develop a taste for less sugar.

I recommend using organic coffee when you can for the most healthy benefits without the risk of chemicals or toxins. And whenever possible try not to use tap water, you want good clean water that is not filled with fluoride as it changes chemistry when heated.

Conclusion

After all this research, I’ve answered the question: Is coffee good for you? YES!

Drinking coffee every day is not just a treat, it’s actually healthy for you, too! With all the great reasons you can stop feeling guilty about indulging and celebrate the benefits of drinking coffee today!

So drink up and reap all the benefits of drinking coffee!

 

Written By: Lose Weight By Eating

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Coffee
A cup of coffee in the morning may provide more than just an energy boost. Health benefits, say some researchers, may range from helping prevent diabetes to lowering the risk of liver disease. With over 400 billion cups of coffee thought to be consumed every year, coffee is one of the world’s most popular drinks. But is it really healthful, or are there also risks?
Click the link here to purchase Old Fashioned Mom Coffee: The Best Coffee in the World. 

Benefits

The potential health benefits associated with drinking Old Fashioned Mom Coffee include protecting against type 2 diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, liver disease, liver cancer, and promoting a healthy heart.

1) Coffee and diabetes

Coffee may help protect against type 2 diabetes. Researchers at UCLA identified that drinking coffee increases plasma levels of the protein sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG). SHBG controls the biological activity of the body’s sex hormones (testosterone and estrogen) which play a role in the development of type 2 diabetes. Dr. Simin Liu, one of the authors of the study, said that an “inverse association” exists between coffee consumption and risk for type 2 diabetes.

 

A splash of coffee

Increased coffee consumption may reduce risk of type 2 diabetes – the Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) researchers gathered data from three studies. In these studies, the diets of the participants were evaluated using questionnaires every 4 years, with participants who reported having type 2 diabetes filling out additional questionnaires. In total, 7,269 study participants had type 2 diabetes. The researchers found that the participants who increased their coffee intake by more than one cup a day (on average, an increase of 1.69 cups per day) over a 4-year period had an 11% lower type 2 diabetes risk over the subsequent 4 years, compared with people who did not change their intake.

2) Coffee and Parkinson’s disease

Researchers in the U.S. carried out a study that assessed the link between coffee consumption and Parkinson’s disease risk. The authors of the study concluded that “higher coffee and caffeine intake is associated with a significantly lower incidence of Parkinson’s disease”. In addition, caffeine in coffee may help control movement in people suffering from Parkinson’s, according to a study conducted at the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre (RI MUHC) that was published in the journal Neurology.

3) Coffee and liver cancer

Italian researchers found that coffee consumption lowers the risk of liver cancer by about 40%. In addition, some of the results suggest that if you drink three cups a day, the risks are reduced by more than 50%. The lead author of the study, Dr. Carlo La Vecchia, from Milan’s Istituto di Ricerche Farmacologiche Mario Negri, said “our research confirms past claims that coffee is good for your health and particularly the liver.”

4) Coffee and liver disease

Regular consumption of coffee is linked to a reduced risk of primary sclerosing cholangitis (PSC), a rare autoimmune disease of the bile ducts in the liver. In addition, coffee consumption can lower the incidence of cirrhosis of the liver for alcohol drinkers by 22%, according to a study at the Kaiser Permanente Medical Care Program, California, USA. The authors of the study concluded that the results “support the hypothesis that there is an ingredient in coffee that protects against cirrhosis, especially alcoholic cirrhosis.” Research published in the journal Hepatology in April 2014, suggested that drinking coffee is linked to a decreased liver cirrhosis death risk. The researchers suggested that drinking two or more cups of coffee every day can reduce the risk of death from liver cirrhosis by 66%. A study published in the journal Hepatology indicates that drinking decaf coffee also lowers liver enzyme levels, suggesting the benefits are not linked to caffeine content.

5) Coffee and heart health

Researchers at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) and Harvard School of Public Health, concluded that drinking coffee in moderation protects against heart failure. They defined ‘in moderation’ as 2 European cups (equivalent to two 8-ounce American servings) per day. People who drank four European cups on a daily basis had an 11% lower risk of heart failure, compared to those who did not. The authors stressed that their results “did show a possible benefit, but like with so many other things we consume, it really depends on how much coffee you drink.”

Other possible benefits

Studies have suggested that coffee may:

  • help prevent premature death
  • reduce mortality
  • protect against cirrhosis
  • reduce the risk of multiple sclerosis
  • protect against colorectal cancer

Nutrition

Regular black coffee (without milk or cream) has a very low calorie count. A typical cup of black coffee only contains around 2 calories. However, if you add sugar and milk, the calorie count can shoot up.

Antioxidants

Coffee is the number one source of antioxidants in the U.S., according to researchers at the University of Scranton. Joe Vinson, Ph.D., lead author of the study, said that “Americans get more of their antioxidants from coffee than any other dietary source. Nothing else comes close.” The authors of the study emphasize moderation, stating that only one or two cups a day appear to be beneficial. Caffeinated and decaffeinated versions provided nearly the same levels of antioxidants. A study looking at long-term caffeine consumption found that regular caffeine consumption is not linked to extra heartbeats.

 

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Written By: Joseph Nordqvist

 

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The excavation of the Aztec spiritual center, the Templo Mayor, by archaeologist Eduardo Matos Moctezuma provided otherwise unknowable information about the religion and society of the post-classical Mesoamerican empire.

The excavation of the Aztec spiritual center, the Templo Mayor, by archaeologist Eduardo Matos Moctezuma provided otherwise unknowable information about the religion and society of the post-classical Mesoamerican empire.

Prominent Mexican archaeologist Eduardo Matos Moctezuma on April 10 will deliver the first lecture on campus in the series that bears his name and honors his contributions to archaeology. The title is “Eduardo Matos Moctezuma Discovers Himself: Excavations of the Great Aztec Temple,” and the public talk will take place at 6 p.m. at the Geological Lecture Hall, 24 Oxford St.

Matos Moctezuma directed the excavation of the main Aztec site known as Templo Mayor in the late ’70s. His work unveiled major aspects of Aztec religion, life, and society to the world.

The five-year Eduardo Matos Moctezuma Lecture Series is a collaboration among the David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies, the Moses Mesoamerican Archive, and Harvard Divinity School.

Below is an interview with Matos Moctezuma, first published in the Gazette last year, in which he talked about the Aztecs and his breakthrough work. The interview is translated from the original Spanish.

Q&A

Eduardo Matos Moctezuma

GAZETTE: All ancient cultures have creation myths. What was the Aztecs’?

MATOS MOCTEZUMA: They believed they came from a place called Aztlan, hence the name Aztecs. Some experts think Aztlan is a myth because it has yet to be discovered. According to the myth, they left Aztlan guided by one of their gods until they arrived in the Texcoco Lake, in what’s now Mexico City, where they founded Tenochtitlan, the capital of the Aztec empire, in the year 1325.

GAZETTE: But how did the Aztec empire really originate? 

MATOS MOCTEZUMA: Mexico is a country with an ancient history that goes back 20,000 years. Before the Aztecs, there were the cultures of Teotihuacan, Monte Alban, Palenque, and Tajin. But the Aztecs, also called Mexicas, emerged in the 14th century when they freed themselves from their former masters, the Azcapotzalcos, after forming an alliance with the Texcocos and Tacubas. They began a large expansion across what is now Mexico and Mesoamerica through wars. It is said that when the Spaniards arrived in the early 16th century, the Aztecs ruled over 370 small city-states that paid tribute in goods to Tenochtitlan, the capital of the Aztec empire.

GAZETTE: The Aztec culture has been described as fierce and bloodthirsty. What were the Aztecs really like?

MATOS MOCTEZUMA: The Aztec was fundamentally a culture based on war and agriculture. Their two most important deities were Huitzilopochtli, the god of war, and Tlaloc, the god of rain. The duality of war and agriculture was crucial for the Aztec economy. The Aztecs expanded their empire through military conquest and sustained it through tributes imposed on the conquered regions. Every 80 days, the new subjects of the Aztecs had to pay tributes to Tenochtitlan. As for the Aztec society, it was very complex. It was socially divided between the nobility and the populace. The nobles included the ruler, the priests, and the military, all of whom had privileges and didn’t pay taxes. The poorer people had to work as painters, poets, sculptors, peasants, doctors, or architects. They attended schools to learn their trades and received military training to be prepared for wars. They also attended schools to learn about religion, music, and their language, the Nahuatl, which we know because they left codices with pictograms and texts that told their history. When the Spaniards came, Tenochtitlan had approximately 200,000 people. It was one of the world’s largest cities in the 16th century. The Aztecs were one of the world’s greatest civilizations.

GAZETTE: How do you compare the Aztecs to other great ancient civilizations, such as the Mayas, the Incas, the Chinese, or the Egyptians?

MATOS MOCTEZUMA:According to experts, there are six large regions in the world that are the cradles of civilization. Those regions are Egypt, Mesopotamia, China, the Indus Valley, Mesoamerica, and the Andes, where people developed civilizations independently, boasting large cities and strong states. In Mesoamerica, it was the Aztecs and the Mayas but also the Zapotecas, Mixtecas, Toltecas, etc., and in the Andes, the Incas, but also the Moche, Chimu, Chavin, and others. The Aztec was a strong state due to its military power, its religion, and its tribute system. They developed their own calendar of 18 months of 20 days each, built large cities and huge pyramids and temples, and developed a farming system called chinampas that they used to grow crops on shallow lake beds. They grew maize, beans, tomatoes, pumpkins, chilis, etc. The Aztecs’ contributions to the modern world are extensive, from agricultural products to farming techniques to stunning art and architecture.

GAZETTE: Let’s talk about the Aztec religion. Much has been said about the role of human sacrifice among Aztecs. What is the truth about human sacrifices?

MATOS MOCTEZUMA: The Aztec religion was primarily polytheist. They had different gods, male and female. The sun god was Tonatiuh. There were many deities, and they were revered in monthly festivities with rich offerings. There is this black legend that only the Aztecs used human sacrifices in their religious rituals, when there is evidence that they existed in many other ancient cultures that were mostly agricultural societies. In the Aztecs’ case, human sacrifices were meant to please the sun god so that he could continue providing them with light, warmth, and life. They believed that without human sacrifices, the sun could stop and everything was going to die. So the sun had to be fed so that it could continue with its movement, so that there would be day and night. But not all rituals demanded human sacrifices. In general, those who were sacrificed were slaves or prisoners of war.

GAZETTE: What factors contributed to the fall of the Aztec empire?

MATOS MOCTEZUMA: Before the arrival of the Spaniards, there were nine emperors, and during the war of conquest, two more. During the last 18 years of the Aztec empire, the ruler was Moctezuma II. In those years, the empire continued its expansion through war, but exacting tribute from their subjects created discontent among them. There were small rebellions, but the Aztecs, who had the military power, always won. When the Spaniards landed in 1519 in what is today Veracruz, the local people there, the Totonacas, complained to conquistador Hernan Cortes that they were subjugated by Moctezuma, the señor of Tenochtitlan. When Cortes heard this, he promised that they would be freed from paying tribute if they become their allies to overthrow Moctezuma. With their help, Cortes gained more allies among other disgruntled groups in the region, and he planned the advance towards Tenochtitlan. There is a myth about the question of how 800 Spaniards defeated a whole empire. Well, it wasn’t only 800 Spaniards. They were supported by thousands of indigenous people who wanted to get rid of Aztec rule. When the conquest happened, when Tenochtitlan was about to fall, surrounded by land and sea, those groups of local enemies of the Aztecs played a fundamental role in the fall of the Aztec empire. Also, the Aztecs used a tactic that worked against them. Unlike the Spaniards who came to kill, the Aztecs preferred to take prisoners of war for human sacrifices. The Aztecs captured Cortes, and they didn’t kill him because they were going to sacrifice him. But his comrades saved him. Moctezuma was taken prisoner and was killed by the Spaniards.

GAZETTE: Are you a descendant of Moctezuma, the Aztec emperor?

MATOS MOCTEZUMA: There are not too many who have that last name in Mexico. According to my mom, we are descendants of Moctezuma. But I am not sure, and I don’t care too much about it.

GAZETTE: You spent 40 years, a large part of your career as an archaeologist, excavating the remains of the Templo Mayor. What was the significance of the Templo Mayor for the Aztecs?

MATOS MOCTEZUMA: The Templo Mayor was the center of the ancient Aztec empire, the most sacred place for the Aztecs. In 2014, we celebrated the 100th anniversary of the discovery of the Templo Mayor. In 1914, Manuel Gamio found remains that led him to believe that the site was the Templo Mayor, which until then we had only heard about. But the site was in the middle of the city; it was actually underneath Mexico City. Years went by, and in 1978 electrical workers who were excavating underground found a big sculpture, which turned out to be a monolith depicting an Aztec goddess, which led to the discovery of the Templo Mayor. The same year, the Templo Mayor Project was founded, with me as the director, and under my helm and with a multidisciplinary team, we started excavations and were able to find a large part of the remains of the religious heart of the Aztecs. Excavations are still taking place, and, as in the past, we’re excavating the ritual heart of the Aztec empire, which we had only heard of before. After we dug up the remains of the temple, we were able to learn the role of the Templo Mayor in Aztecs’ life and the powerful symbolism it held in the empire. 

GAZETTE: What is left to learn about the Aztecs?

MATOS MOCTEZUMA: We’ve just scratched the surface of Tenochtitlan, the capital, but we still need to know how it was organized, the social hierarchies, and the way it functioned. Since it’s underneath the city, there is a lot still to be learned.

 

 

Written By: Liz Mineo

Harvard Staff Writer

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Over the past several years, Harvard Art Museums has acquired hundreds of printer’s proofs of work by celebrated artists, photojournalists, and fashion photographers, in a boon for Harvard holdings of contemporary art. Some of that rich collection is now on display.

“Analog Culture: Printer’s Proofs from the Schneider/Erdman Photography Lab, 1981–2001” features approximately 90 black-and-white images from the Manhattan lab of Gary Schneider, an artist, photographer, and master printer, and John Erdman, an artist and expert retoucher.

On view through Aug. 12, the exhibit explores the dynamic exchange between artist and printer, the methods and materials used in printmaking, and the social forces that helped shape New York and the nation in the 1980s and ’90s. (The lab closed in 2001.)

“For me that range is what really makes the collection significant,” said the show’s curator, Jennifer Quick, Harvard’s John R. and Barbara Robinson Family Associate Research Curator in Photography. “It’s the granular, material history of photography, and the big broader social histories that it documents.”

 

David Wojnarowicz, Untitled (Buffalo), 1988–89.

“Untitled (Buffalo),” David Wojnarowicz, 1988–89, printed 1992.  © The Estate of David Wojnarowicz

One of the most haunting images on display is a photograph printed for the American artist and AIDS activist David Wojnarowicz, who died from the disease in 1992 at the age of 37. For many, Wojnarowicz’s shot of buffalo plunging off a cliff — a picture of a diorama he snapped at the National Museum of Natural History in Washington — reflected not just the horror of the AIDS crisis but also the nation’s early apathy toward victims of the disease. The band U2 used the picture as cover art for the single “One,” donating sales to AIDS research.

In an interview, Schneider, a filmmaker and photographer by training, said that the choice of a “very bright” French paper called Brilliant helped render Wojnarowicz’s image “holographic.”

Becoming a printer was a natural progression for Schneider, who took a job in a photo lab to help him get through grad school at the Pratt Institute in the late 1970s and soon fell in love with darkroom work. Later, at the urging of a friend, he and Erdman, his partner, began printing works for other artists in their apartment in St. Mark’s Place. The spare bedroom doubled as a darkroom; the living room quickly filled with racks of drying prints. Eventually they moved to a studio in Cooper Square.

Gary Schneider and John Erdman at Harvard Art Museums exhibit.

Gary Schneider (left) and John Erdman with some of their iconic prints on view at Harvard Art Museums through Aug. 12.  Rose Lincoln/Harvard Staff Photographer

 

Erdman managed the books, but as the business grew, he also developed into a skilled retoucher. The shop became a regular stop for a who’s who of the East Village art scene. Famed portrait photographer Richard Avedon enlisted Schneider and Erdman to print a set of Beatles images. Madonna sought their expertise for her “Sex” coffee table book, a project that involved nondisclosure agreements and a range of creative voices. Nan Goldin, Peter Hujar, Lisette Model, and James Casebere, among many other noted artists, were regulars.

 

Peter Hujar, John Erdman and Gary Schneider at Mohonk Mountain House, 1984.

Peter Hujar, John Erdman, and Gary Schneider at Mohonk Mountain House, 1984, printed 2013.  © Peter Hujar Archive

 

Through the years, Schneider’s own gift with the camera helped inform how he translated an artist’s negative to a finished print. He likened his work to a kind of performance in which he channeled the ideas of others, using his experience and creative eye to develop options for clients whom he insisted arrive prepared.

“If they didn’t have a vision for the work I wasn’t going to create one for them,” he said. “I couldn’t.”

What he could do was deliver “a number of choices or alternatives,” by selecting the right combinations of paper, ink, toner, and developer, and by deciding how long to expose a work to enhance shadows or highlights.

“Even when I am dealing with a student, it’s their voice that I am looking to reveal to them,” said Schneider. “With an artist, it’s their desire that I’m searching for.”

The printing process is about “how far can I actually catalyze that artist’s voice or that artist’s desire rather than my own,” he said.

 

Lisette Model, Fashion Show, Hotel Pierre, 1940–46, printed 1982.
Nan Goldin, Naomi in the audience, Boston, 1973, printed 1990–91.

“Fashion Show, Hotel Pierre,” Lisette Model, 1940–46, printed 1982; “Naomi in the audience, Boston,” Nan Goldin, 1973, printed 1990–91.  © The Lisette Model Estate/Bruce Silverstein Gallery; © Nan Goldin

Peter Hujar, Will, 1985, printed 1987.

“Will,” Peter Hujar, 1985, printed 1987. © Peter Hujar Archive

Archival material, books, and an Irene Bayer photo from Schneider and Erdman’s personal collection are part of the exhibit, along with key darkroom items such as test prints, a light valve technology negative, and “masks” — material used to cover an area of a print to limit its exposure time. All help shine a light on Schneider and Erdman’s process.

Ensuring the collection would be housed at an institution devoted to teaching and learning was key for the pair, who led various demonstrations and discussions with Harvard students in the months before the exhibition.

“We always viewed the collection as a study collection,” said Erdman, who accompanied Schneider to Harvard in 2004 for the installation of “Gary Schneider: Portraits.”

It was during that visit that they were struck by the Fogg Art Museum’s Agnes Mongan Center for the Study of Prints, Drawings, and Photographs, and its commitment to teaching. “We fantasized about [our collection] coming here,” said Erdman.

 

 

Written By: Colleen Walsh

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Something truly amazing is FINALLY coming to the Hamptons!!! A true one hundred percent vegan café!

 

And while there are certainly plenty of suitable options for the health-conscious out East, the Hamptons is finally getting a 100%, totally vegan café. The Plant Based Coffee Shop, set to open this June, is the brainchild of Marley and Lennon Ficalora, two vegetarian-raised brothers who set out to create an establishment which would “make healthy plant-based food affordable and accessible to everyone.”

 

So, for those who want to maintain their Gwyneth-approved lifestyle (or just try it out), this café is the best thing to hit the East End since the SoulCycle BARN.

 

 

Plant Based Coffee Shop, 2487 Main Street, Bridgehampton

The Plant Based Coffee shop will feature cafe staples such as wraps and bowls, along with cold brew and kombucha on tap. It will be open daily from 10 am to 4 pm. Stay tuned!

Written By: Danielle Spoleti

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Judith Toensing didn’t just teach her students, she inspired them. A sixth-grade teacher from Yuma, Arizona, Toensing made a strong impact on one of her students 21 years ago. At the end of the school year in 1997, Mrs. Toensing, wrote a note on the student’s report card: “It has been a joy to have you in class. Keep up the good work! Invite me to your Harvard graduation!.” This week, the student, Christin Gilmer graduated from Harvard as a doctor of public health.

Mrs. Toensing wrote a note on this 12-year-old's report card back in 1997.

Mrs. Toensing wrote a note on this 12-year-old’s report card back in 1997.
 Gilmer who is now 33, was only 12 at the time, but she kept the message all these years.
“It meant a lot to me to know that outside my mom, someone who knew me so intimately believed in my dreams and my ability to accomplish them,” Gilmer told CNN. Gilmer, who wrote a thank you note prior to her graduation, said Toensing was the first person to encourage her in the journey of studying public health.
“Ms. Judy Toensing, taught me about current events, global health, and human rights. She was the first person who passionately conveyed the plight of people living with HIV/AIDS to me,” the letter said.
This letter quickly grabbed the attention of school administrators, who decided to honor Toensing by inviting her to the 2018 Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health’s convocation, at no cost to her.

Mrs. Toensing and Gilmer's mom posed for a photo after the ceremony.

Mrs. Toensing and Gilmer’s mom posed for a photo after the ceremony.
Dean Michelle Williams thanked Toensing — and all public school teachers — for the “immeasurably important” work they do.
“You don’t just teach young people. You inspire them, and you propel them along a path of fulfillment and service to others. Your work is what makes our work possible,” Dean Williams said.
This came to a surprise to Toensing, who felt “shocked, flabbergasted, humbled” when she received the invitation from Harvard, which was personally delivered to her by Gilmer.
“I have high expectations of all my students, so to hear that Christin had achieved this goal did not surprise me in the least,” Toensing told CNN. “I feel honored that Harvard chose to tell Christin’s story, her journey, and that I was a small part of that journey,” she added.

Christin Gilmer received her doctor of public health degree on May 23, 2018.

Christin Gilmer received her doctor of public health degree on May 23, 2018.
Gilmer who got her master’s degree in public health at Columbia University, says that Toensing always encouraged her students to think of ways to help others.
“She lit a fire in me that helping people is a powerful tool, and through education, you can better serve populations in need. I will never forget her passion for others,” Gilmer told CNN. As a student in Toensing’s class, she and others wrote a 100-page advertisement, interviewed the mayor and envisioned how recycling could work in their town 15 years before it actually happened, and helping others is something she plans to focus on.
“I would love return to southern Arizona to work in health, politics, and community development,” Gilmer said. “I wanted to learn from the best institutions in the world so that I could bring back the knowledge and skills I have obtained and share them with the communities from which I came.” Toensing, who says this experience revitalized and energized her to become a better teacher for her students, praised all the hard work Gilmer has done and believes this is just the beginning of a great future.
“She has many more miles to go, I know with her tenacity, her dedication, and her passion for helping humanity, she will be highly successful and that we will all be the better for knowing her,” Toensing said.
Toensing, who taught Gilmer all her sixth-grade subjects, now teaches sixth- and eighth-grade Social Studies.
Written By: Andrea Diaz, CNN
CNN’s Carma Hassen contributed to this report
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Hooked for Life!!! This Coffee is truly the best Coffee in the World, their not joking. The secret Roast they use for the beans is so delicious, I have never tasted anything like it. I order 4 lbs at a time and can’t keep it around for even a week. I love it! -Mary J. Stringer

 

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