Sitting in a booth in a corner may be romantic but can also have a down side. Researchers at Cornell University’s Food and Brand Lab discovered that patrons who sat on high stools or seated themselves by a window tended to make healthier food choices. They also tended to skip dessert and alcohol compared with those seated in a booth. More visibility to prying eyes and seated in an upright position seemed to make people more aware of what were better options on a menu.
(Source-Muscle and Performance Magazine)
“Pilot Light” is a Chicago based food education program centered around children. It conducted its sessions in some 1,500 schools and found that 95% of the students enjoyed their learning sessions. Most of the students interviewed after the course said that.
1) They know how food choices can affect their future
2) It is important to know ingredients.
3) They enjoyed trying new foods
4) The importance of where the food originated from
5) That they are now able to make healthy choices
Efforts are now being made by “Chartwells K2”, the largest school food service company, to expand the program by launching a Mobile Teaching Kitchen which would include chefs, dietitians and demonstrations
(Source-Amazing Wellness Magazine)
Chicago has now built what is considered “the Greenest Street in America.It is a two mile stretch In an industrial neighborhood of Pilsen. Bike paths and parking lanes are paved with smog eating concrete, sidewalks are made of recycled material and streetlights are wind and sun powered. “Bioswales” drains remove silt and pollution from runoff water with the aid of dense, drought tolerant foliage. This combination of a vegetation and drainage system diverts storm water from over-powering city drains. The road in turn uses 42% less energy to operate.
At present we have dark, milk and white (which is actually made from cocoa butter) chocolate. Now it seems there is a new flavor and color chocolate that is about to enter the market. A Switzerland based company is unveiling a “ruby chocolate” that is derived from the ruby bean native to Ecuador, Brazil and the Ivory coast. It is said to be a totally new experience with an emphasis on a berry-fruitiness taste. Its pink color has absolutely no red coloring or artificial berry flavoring involved in the process. The source of the new chocolate is said to come from a species that is genetically close to the cocoa plant that we are presently familiar with. It is scheduled to hit the market in about 18 months. Sorry to keep you chocolate lovers waiting.
Why do some people become jittery after one cup of coffee whereas others are able to drink it continuously without the slightest negative effect? The answer it seems may lie in your genes. A certain enzyme CYPIA2 may be responsible for how quickly our bodies break down caffeine. One variant of this gene causes the liver to metabolize caffeine at a faster rate. If this particular gene is inherited from both parents it can in turn increase the metabolism of caffeine by as much as four times. A study was funded by The National Institute of Health in which there were 4,000 participants. Those that were fast metabolizes were able to clear caffeine from their systems rapidly allowing the antioxidants and polyphenols to kick in without any negative effects of caffeine. There may be multiple genes that are responsible but more research is now underway on how caffeine and the CYPIA2 gene can affect an athlete”s performance.
Is it possible that your mood can affect the potency of a vaccine? British researchers tested older adults ages 65-85. They recorded mood, stress level, negative thoughts, sleep patterns, and diet before administering a vaccine. Afterwards they followed with blood tests from 4 to 16 weeks. Only those who had exhibited a positive mood before the vaccine was administered, had higher levels of the antibodies to resist HINI, a potentially dangerous flu strain. It seems your mood on the day of being vaccinated has the most to do with how effective the outcome will be.
There are approximately 43 million households in America that have one or more dogs as part of the family bringing the total up to some 73 million dogs. Some fall into the Service Dog category in which they provide assistance to the blind, disabled veterans and help with mental disabilities such as autism. Programs have even been adopted in prisons where inmates are given the responsibility of training a puppy. But what makes dogs so responsive to our needs? Does it have to do strictly with being devoted to the hand that feeds them or does it go deeper. Dr. Gregory Berns a neuroscientist at the Emory University in Atlanta has been scanning the brains of dogs to find out how exactly they think and what is their motivation. The process of using an M.R.I. was difficult because of the hearing sensitivity. When the process of getting a dog into an M.R.I. scanner was finally mastered some 90 dogs were scanned to see if their brains functioned along the lines of a human. The tests proved that dogs use the corresponding parts of their brain to solve tasks. About 25% of the dogs responded more to praise rather then to food. It was also discovered the dogs have the capability of responding to a photo of someone that they have an extreme devotion to. Could understanding a dog’s brain lead to solving why certain animals tend to be aggressive? If so, would it eventually help us in discovering the key to understanding aggressive behavior in humans?
Millet is one of the earliest cultivated crops. It is often classified as one of the Ancient grains along with Quinoa and Buckwheat. Most people often think of millet as bird food since it is a major part of commercial bird feed. It is extremely high in protein, great for those who are gluten intolerant and can be grown in extremely arid conditions. Millet can also be a substitute for couscous since it is a whole grain. Along with its supply of protein, it contains an abundance of important nutrients such as calcium, magnesium, and potassium. It is slowly gaining popularity in the western diet.
Excessive exposure to artificial light can take a toll on your muscles. People who work on computers or hospital workers can spend long hours under these conditions. Researchers at the Leiden University Medical Center in the Netherlands tested rats by placing one group in continuous light. The control group was placed in 12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness (normal conditions). The group in continuous artificial light lost muscle strength, showed signs of osteoporosis, gained weight and their immune system suffered. Returning the rats to a normal light schedule however, reversed the symptoms. More testing has to be done but it seems the mind as well as the body need a period of complete darkness to revitalize.