background preloader


Facebook Twitter


Vegan. We Love Ready Meals … But What Are They Doing To Our Health? Who doesn’t like a ready meal once in a while? People in the UK certainly do: consumption of ready meals and convenience meat products has increased five-fold over the last 40 years, according to the latest National Food Survey on UK food-buying habits. High levels of calories and fat in some of these products can be spotted on the label.

But there are other concerns about the nutritional value of some ready meals – things you won’t find on the label. Lost Nutrients One concern is the way these foods are cooked. Cooking processes can be just as important for our health as the sugar, salt and fat content. Beetroot turning cooking water purple is a vivid example of how nutrients (antioxidants called betalains) can be lost. Labelling on ready meals tends to be limited to fat, sugar and salt.

Some makers of ready meals compromise health by substituting healthy ingredients with less healthy ones. Another example is the way olives are processed. Mmm … ferrous gluconate. Fat vs muscle burn. The world’s oldest oatmeal? Did hunter-gatherers eat oatmeal 25,000 years before the spread of farming? That’s the implication of a new study from this cave in southeastern Italy called Grotta Paglicci, which was occupied by Upper Paleolithic hunter-gatherers about 32,000 years ago. Researchers have found significant traces of oat grains on a stone pestle found in the cave, they report this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. In many other ways, this was a typical cave of the time, complete with wall paintings of horses, human burials, and Stone Age tools. Yet the evidence from oat starch grains left on the pestle shows clearly that its inhabitants made precocious use of plants, a conclusion bolstered by traces of wear on the stone consistent with grinding.

Stefano Ricci Grinding stone from Grotta Paglicci, Italy. What ca, kill you. What Happens To Your Body 60 Minutes After Drinking A Can Of Coke. You’ve seen Coca-Cola mixed with molten lead, dropped into liquid nitrogen and even consumed by a river of molten lava. But what happens to your body after you’ve drunk the sugar-laden beverage? After reading this, you may reconsider picking up a can. This infographic, created by Niraj Naik of The Renegade Pharmacist last month, claims to describe how the sugar, caffeine and other ingredients contained within one can of Coca-Cola affect the body an hour after consumption.

The Renegade Pharmacist. Based on this post by Wade Meredith on Blisstree, the facts seem legitimate - until you focus in on the actual figures used. In fact, without any figures backed up with sources or real data, these claims appear to be a attempt to alarm Coca-Cola drinkers without much substance. [H/T: Huffington Post] AsapSCIENCE. Why Tomatoes are Fruits, and Strawberries Aren't Berries. It seems that the widely accepted categories for fruit and vegetables are sometimes incorrect. While avocados are called vegetables, by definition they're a fruit. And rhubarb is a deliciously sweet addition to any dessert – but it’s a vegetable.

Strawberries, while found in the fruit aisle, aren’t actually a fruit. They are a fleshy receptacle (yes, that’s the actual term) for the seeds, which are the actual fruit of the strawberry. Check out the video below, where SciShow host Hank Green explains what makes a fruit a fruit, a vegetable a vegetable and a capsicum, confusingly, a berry. Read this next: Military Explosions Caused Mass Whale Stranding.

Paleo Diet? Science Has Moved On Since The Stone Age. “Our ancestors didn’t eat like this, so we shouldn’t.” This is the main ethos of many modern diets which advise us to exclude a number of recent additions to our plates because they were not part of our distant predecessors diet. There are many different variations on the theme – from all-encompassing “palaeolithic-style” diets to grain-free or gluten-free regimes – which are all generating a massive boom in specialised shops, products and even restaurants.

The general idea is that for most of our millions of years of evolution we were not exposed to grains, milk, yogurt or cheese, refined carbs, legumes, coffee or alcohol. As they only came into existence with farming around 10,000 years ago, our finely-tuned bodies have not been designed to deal with them efficiently. The belief is that human evolution via survival of the fittest and natural selection is a very slow process and our genes classically take tens of thousands of years to change. We Have Adapted. What Does Spider-Man Eat For Breakfast? While stuck in a hotel room I got sucked into watching the 2002 Spider-Man movie. And it struck me that Peter Parker must have an enormously high-protein diet to generate all that spider silk he goes through.

So being the geek that I am, I wondered what his protein consumption has to be to sustain his villain-beating lifestyle. I think we can work it out with a bit of school-level physics, maths and some basic biochemistry. We will need to work out the strength of Spider-Man’s silk, calculate how much force Spider-Man would exert on the silk and then figure out how much and what kind of protein will be needed to enable Spider-Man to do his stunts. Let’s assume Spider-Man produces silk that has the same characteristics as dragline silk produced by the European garden spider Araneus diadematus.

A piano wire has the tensile strength of 1.1 billion Pascals. According to Marvel’s directory, Spider-Man weighs 75kg. There is about 6g of protein in an egg. 10 +3 Simple Ways to Reduce Your Cancer Risk. Fact: In 2012, there were 14 million new cancer cases worldwide, and 8.2 million cancer related deaths. Fact: About 70% of all cancer deaths occur in low- and middle-income countries. Fact: The number of global cancer cases is expected to rise by 70% in the coming 2 decades. Fact: More than 30% of cancers can be prevented.

Flickr / Counse Cancer is a very scary beast. Today is World Cancer Day and to raise awareness around cancer, the World Cancer Research Fund International has released a short video outlining some simple ways to reduce your cancer risk. Based on up-to-date evidence, their advice is pretty simple. So What Is It? Maintain a healthy weight. Flickr / Eyesplash - What happen In addition to the ten above, most doctors would also recommend: For those in the hotter parts of the globe - remembering to cover up in the sun, apply and reapply sunscreen and wear a hat. World Cancer Research Fund International What’s The Take Home? This Is 200 Calories. Why Most Food Labels Are Wrong About Calories. Food labels seem to provide all the information a thoughtful consumer needs, so counting calories should be simple.

But things get tricky because food labels tell only half the story. Looks so official and definitive….FDA A calorie is a measure of usable energy. Food labels say how many calories a food contains. But what they don’t say is that how many calories you actually get out of your food depends on how highly processed it is. Raw versus cooked – they look different and that’s not all. Waifer X, CC BY Processed food makes you fatter Food-processing includes cooking, blending and mashing, or using refined instead of unrefined flour. For our ancestors, it could have meant the difference between life and death. Potatoes – raw, then cut, then cooked, then mashed. More processed foods are digested more completely Animal experiments show that processing affects calorie gain whether the energy source is carbohydrate, protein or lipid (fats and oils). Softer foods are calorie-saving.