August 29, 2009 at 1:14 am (Health and wellness)
Source: Washington Post, April 27, 2009
U.S. law requires nutritional labels on retail groceries, but not on restaurant meals, so when former U.S. Food and Drug Administration Commissioner David A. Kessler asked to see the nutritional labels for foods he likes at Chili’s restaurant, Chili’s refused. An inveterate researcher, Kessler resorted to late-night dumpster-diving to obtain them. He discovered that a single serving of Chili’s Southwestern Eggrolls contains a whopping 910 calories, 57 grams of fat and 1,960 milligrams of sodium. The labels mention salt eight different times, and sugars five times. After leading efforts at FDA in the 1990s to regulate nicotine as a drug, Dr. Kessler is exploring the phenomenon of American overeating and the reasons behind the skyrocketing weight gain among the general U.S. population over the last three decades. Dr. Kessler, who has struggled with his own weight over his adult life, discovered that the combination of salt, sugar and fat in foods triggers a chemical change in people’s brains that makes them crave more foods containing that same combination. Dr. Kessler sees a parallel between the food industry and the tobacco industry, in that that the food industry manipulates this special salt-sugar-fat combination to induce this neurological response. In his new book, The End of Overeating: Taking Control of the Insatiable American Appetite, Dr. Kessler describes how the food industry tries to "hijack" peoples’ brains to sell more food.
August 25, 2009 at 7:33 am (Health and wellness)
Your brain needs exercise just like a muscle. If you use it often and in the right ways, you will become a more skilled thinker and increase your ability to focus. Here are 5 simple techniques to exercise your brain.
- Minimize Television Watching — Watching television doesn’t use your mental capacity OR allow it to recharge. When you feel like relaxing, try reading a book instead. If you’re too tired, listen to some music. When you’re with your friends or family, leave the tube off and have a conversation.
- Exercise – Time spent exercising always leads to greater learning because it improves productivity during the time afterwards. Using your body clears your head and creates a wave of energy.
- Read Challenging Books – If you want to improve your thinking and writing ability you should read books that make you focus. Reading a classic novel can change your view of the world and will make you think in more precise, elegant English.
- Early to Bed, Early to Rise – Nothing makes it harder to concentrate than sleep deprivation. You’ll be most rejuvenated if you go to bed early and don’t sleep more than 8 hours.
- Take Time to Reflect – Spending some time alone in reflection gives you a chance organize your thoughts and prioritize your responsibilities. Afterwards, you’ll have a better understanding of what’s important and what isn’t.
August 22, 2009 at 9:10 pm (Health and wellness)
Bromides are a common endocrine disruptor. Because bromide is also a halide, it competes for the same receptors that are used in the thyroid gland (among other places) to capture iodine. This will inhibit thyroid hormone production resulting in a low thyroid state.
Iodine is essential for your body, and is detected in every organ and tissue. There is increasing evidence that low iodine is related to numerous diseases, including cancer. Various clinicians and researchers have found iodine effective with everything from goiter to constipation.
Bromide can be found in several forms. Methyl Bromide is a pesticide used mainly on strawberries, found predominantly in the California areas. Brominated Vegetable Oil (BVO) is added to citrus drinks to help suspend the flavoring in the liquid.
Potassium Bromate is a dough conditioner found in commercial bakery products and some flours.
August 21, 2009 at 11:56 pm (Health and wellness)
EWG – Environmental Working Group
August 20, 2009 at 12:28 am (Health and wellness)
Doctors pass it out like candy to kids these days. I’m sure you know someone — a child or grandchild — who takes it every single day.
That’s why it’s so important for you to learn about the results of a new FDA study. It showed that Ritalin and other ADHD drugs may increase the risk of SUDDEN in children by a staggering 600%!
Let that sink in: A 600% increase in sudden, unexplained death… in children! From the FDA’s OWN study.
So why wasn’t this the biggest story on every major news channel? Why didn’t the government immediately ban these ADHD drugs to protect our children?
You won’t believe the answers — they’re beyond immoral, practically criminal. I’ve seen a lot of FDA cover-ups… and I’m still absolutely shocked and infuriated by this one.
HSI Director Jenny Thompson tells the full, outrageous story in this new video. If you have children or grandchildren on Ritalin, please watch it right now. It’s just a couple of minutes long… but the information it contains could save thousands of young lives. And please send it to everyone you know who has a child taking Ritalin or other ADHD drugs.
August 19, 2009 at 8:22 pm (Health and wellness)
Toll House Cookie Dough Returns With Warning
Home » Food and Health » Food Safety
You may recall the recall of Nestle’s Toll House cookie dough in mid-June. Approximately 72 people became ill after eating the cookie dough raw rather than cooked from E. coli contamination.
With the return of the refrigerated cookie dough to U.S. supermarket shelves comes a warning not to eat cookie dough raw.
Nestle is adding a label to the new shipments of cookie dough which will state they are a “New Batch” and the warning statement “Do not consume raw cookie dough.
Signs and symptoms of E. coli infections typically begin three or four days after exposure to the bacteria, but can occur as soon as one day afterward to more than a week later. Signs and symptoms include diarrhea, abdominal cramping, pain or tenderness, and nausea and vomiting.
The best prevention of E. coli infections includes washing your hands thoroughly after using the bathroom and before preparing or eating food. It is important to cook meats thoroughly and to avoid raw milk and unpasteurized dairy products. Don’t eat raw cookie dough.
For suggestions on how to use the Toll House cookie dough visit Nestle’s web site at www.verybestbaking.com.
Nestle USA Press Release
Center for Disease Control and Prevention
Ramona Bates MD
August 13, 2009 at 4:00 pm (Food and drink)
This morning I found Tip Jar community online, which is powered by Google and offers parents and individuals tips on how to save money on food, kids, family and shopping. It also provides money saving tips in other categories ranging from finance to travel. Some of the tips that I saw on Tip Jar related food were actually very healthy.
For example, one tip says drink water instead of buying soda drinks. Here we have an obvious healthy tip from Tip Jar that also saves money. Zen Habits writes. ""Drink water. Often we drink lots of calories through sodas, coffee, alcohol, juices, tea, etc. And that costs a lot too. Drink water, save money, save calories. Here are some tips for forming the water habit." Apparently if you drink a big glass of water before each meal, you won’t eat as much, saving on the food bill.
Here is another good tip from Tip Jar that not only saves money, but also may fight obesity. This tip is from choosetosave.org and says "don’t grocery shop on an empty stomach or you may end up buying more than you need."
I read several tips at Tip Jar about the health and financial benefits of eating breakfast. "Eat breakfast. Eating a healthy breakfast fills you up with energy for the day and also decreases your desire to eat a big lunch in the middle of the day. Not only that, breakfast can be very healthy, quick, and inexpensive."
Another good tip is about eating out less. "Eat out less. The average person spends well over $2,000 a year on eating out. Restaurants are expensive, including fast-food. It’s much cheaper to cook your own food," writes again Zen Habits. Indeed, instead of eating out, parents are encouraged to buy healthy food and make home cooking a fun event for children. I do involve my children in cooking and encourage them to participate in the process. Not only I save on restaurants (nothing wrong against healthy restaurants), but also develope healthy eating habits in them, teaching how to cook vegetables and follow good diet habits.
Written by Armen Hareyan
Materials from Tip Jar are used in this report.
Tip Jar Food
August 12, 2009 at 12:14 am (Health and wellness)
Fit Way: Wash your car with a sponge and a bucket of suds.
Fit Way: Cook dinner yourself.
Fast Way: Dry your clothes in the dryer.
Fit Way: Go for a hike together.
Fit Way: Hang your laundry out to dry.
READ FULL ARTICLE CLICK HERE
Fit Way: Jump into your self-raked leaf pile.
August 11, 2009 at 9:18 pm (Health and wellness)
The four-acre urban Alemany Farm in San Francisco (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)
No, urban farming is not the name of some cool sounding store that will become the next fad like froyo and cupcakes. It’s just what it is–farming and gardening for yourself at home at in local gardens for the community. Up in San Francisco, Mayor Gavin Newsom wants community gardens on vacant and underutilized city-owned lots. At the White House, First Lady Michelle Obama has planted a garden on the south lawn. Although the garden on White House Place in Los Angeles is threatened and the South Central farm is now over a hundred miles away in the Central Valley, the urban farming efforts found in Silver Lake, South Pasadena, Altadena and elsewhere seem to be growing in popularity.
Last week, a post for apartment dwellers on maintaining basil was one of the most popular on LAist. And earlier this month U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack proclaimed that we have a National Community Gardening Week, which will take place in two weeks.
This has us thinking. Is growing your own food going to become the next big thing? We cannot complain if it becomes a reality–it’s certainly healthier and more sustainable than the frozen yogurt and cupcake trends. And per usual with anything that swoons in popularity and plateaus, the habits formed stick around. What do you think? Are we ready for a homegrown revolution?