When is a fresh cracked egg not exactly a fresh cracked egg?

7288777_GWhen it comes from McDonald’s, of course.

As part of their transparency campaign, McDonald’s included a call to action on their website. It reads “Do we use fresh cracked eggs?” Unfortunately, FoodFacts.com found that when you click on it, it brings you to the nutrition facts and ingredients for the McMuffin. USDA Fresh Grade A Eggs are listed as the ingredients.

Perhaps that’s enough to satisfy some. But you need to keep reading to the section prefaced with the words “Prepared with.” Let’s take a look:

Prepared with Liquid Margarine: Liquid Soybean Oil and Hydrogenated Cottonseed and Soybean Oils, Water, Partially Hydrogenated Soybean Oil, Salt, Soy Lecithin, Mono and Diglycerides, Sodium Benzoate and Potassium Sorbate (Preservatives), Artificial Flavor, Citric Acid, Vitamin A Palmitate, Beta Carotene (Color).

We’re pretty sure that when any member of our community prepares eggs at home, those eggs are being prepared with butter. This “liquid margarine” McDonald’s is using is certainly compromising the integrity of those fresh cracked eggs. This “liquid margarine” is adding some unfortunate ingredients to your meal — partially hydrogenated oil, sodium benzoate and artificial flavor. Why does the preparation of fresh cracked eggs require artificial flavor? If they’re attempting to mimic the flavor of butter, it would be easier and healthier to use actual butter. The eggs themselves have enough flavor to carry themselves.

This isn’t liquid margarine. It’s a combination of oils with other ingredients that try to fool consumers into thinking it’s butter. This ingredient is ruining the integrity of any eggs they use.

Don’t be fooled. McDonald’s “Liquid Margarine” IS an ingredient in your morning eggs. While they’re trying to sway consumers into the idea that it’s not an ingredient — as evidenced by the separation of the “Prepared with” line. Those 14 other ingredients are actually in those fresh cracked eggs.

Is McDonald’s being transparent here? FoodFacts.com doesn’t think so.

http://www.mcdonalds.com/us/en/food/product_nutrition.breakfast.46.egg-mcmuffin.html

Pretzel rolls on a roll … Dunkin’s new Pretzel Roll Chicken Sandwich

1426143986252Pretzel rolls are one of the newest fast food trends.  After making it big at Wendy’s, Dunkin Donuts is the latest fast food chains to add a pretzel roll sandwich to their menu.

So, if you like pretzel roll sandwiches you may be interested in how the new Dunkin version stacks up for your dietary requirements.  Let’s take a look at what you can expect.

Nutrition Facts:

Calories:                          640
Fat:                                   25 grams
Saturated Fat:                8 grams
Cholesterol:                    70 mg
Sodium:                          1560 grams

That’s quite a chicken sandwich!  If we didn’t know any better, FoodFacts.com might think these were the nutrition facts for a fast food burger.   At 65% of your daily recommended allowance for sodium, this is one especially salty sandwich.  So even before we take a good look at the ingredients, we’re not off to a good start with this one!

Here are the ingredients:

Pretzel Roll: Roll: Enriched Wheat Flour (Wheat Flour, Malted Barley Flour, Niacin, Iron, Thiamin Mononitrate, Riboflavin, Folic Acid),Water, Sugar, Nonfat Dry Milk, Yeast, Palm Oil, Salt, Dough Conditioner (Wheat Flour, DATEM, Contains 2% or less of: Soybean Oil, Enzymes, Ascorbic Acid, L-Cysteine Hydrochloride, Azodicarbonamide), Wheat Gluten, Shelf Life Extender (Wheat Flour, Monoglycerides, Wheat Gluten, Corn Syrup Solids, Contains 2% or less of: Silicon Dioxide to prevent caking, Soybean Oil, Enzymes, Calcium Sulfate, Salt), Natural Pretzel Flavor (Glycerin, Natural Flavor, Water), Calcium Propionate (Preservative), Azodicarbonamide, Ascorbic Acid; Contains traces of Egg; Lye solution is applied as Surface Finishing Agent, Soy Lecithin added as a Processing Aid; Topping: Pretzel Salt; Chicken: Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breast with Rib Meat, Water, Seasoning (Sugar, Maltodextrin, Salt, Yeast Extract, Spice, Onion Powder, Spice Extractives, Citric Acid, Natural Flavors), Isolated Soy Protein with less than 2% of: Soy Lecithin, Sodium Phosphates. BREADED WITH: Wheat Flour, Sugar, Salt, Leavening (Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate, Sodium Bicarbonate), Dextrose, Spice, Yellow Corn Flour, Spice Extractive, Extractives of Paprika and Turmeric. BATTERED WITH: Water, Wheat Flour, Yellow Corn Flour, Sugar, Modified Corn Starch, Leavening (Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate, Sodium Bicarbonate), Salt, Dextrose, Extractives of Paprika and Turmeric, Spice. PREDUSTED WITH: Wheat Flour, Modified Wheat Starch, Sugar, Wheat Gluten, Salt and Leavening (Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate, Sodium Bicarbonate). Breading Set In Vegetable Oil (Soy and/or Corn and/or Rice Oil); Sliced White Cheddar Cheese: Pasteurized Milk, Cheese Culture, Salt, Enzymes; Bacon: Pork, cured with: Water, Sugar, Salt, Sodium Phosphate, Smoke Flavoring, Sodium Erythorbate, Sodium Nitrite; Honey Mustard Sauce: Sugar, Cider Vinegar, Mustard, Water, Contains less than 2% of: Honey, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Vegetable Oil (Soybean and/or Canola), Salt, Molasses, Spice, Paprika (Color).

A special ingredient list indeed.  The coveted pretzel roll features the same ingredient other fast food chains have committed to removing from their products — azodicarbonamide.  Then we have something called “Natural Pretzel Flavoring”, more azodicarbonamide, more natural flavors and some high fructose corn syrup.

Yet another fast food chicken option that really isn’t a better choice than a burger.  There are still so many fast food consumers who think that ordering a chicken sandwich really is healthier, when it’s really not.  The Dunkin Donuts Pretzel Roll Chicken Sandwich is just like most of the chicken sandwich options available throughout the vast fast food empire masquerading as a better choice.  Trust us, it’s not.

 

http://www.dunkindonuts.com/content/dunkindonuts/en/menu/food/sandwiches/Bakery_Sandwiches/pretzel_roll_chicken_sandwich.html

 

Low-quality carbohydrate consumption linked to weight gain

950341751Losing weight is a difficult proposition for many. It’s also been complicated by the myriad of concepts applying to weight loss that permeate our culture. We’re sure you’ve heard just about all of them — no-carb, low-carb, gluten free, nutritional cleansing, the cabbage soup diet, calorie counting, low-sugar, no-sugar. We could go on and on. The thing is, they don’t always work. And even when they do, folks who’ve been on them would probably tell you they put the weight right back on after they finished. Is there an answer to this? Why is it so difficult for people to achieve long-term weight loss?

A study from the Friedman School of Nutrition Science & Police from the Tufts University led the research concerning the correlation of glycemic index and long term weight. Prior studies proved the association of glycemic index and diabetes but this is the first time long-term weight showed in the equation.

The researchers analyzed 16 years of follow ups from over 120,000 men and women in the continental United States. They particularly observed the types of protein consumed by the participants and its relation to weight gain or loss.

They concluded two things in their search. First thing is that increased consumption of seafood, yoghurt, nuts, skinless chicken and yoghurt has a strong correlation with weight loss. While, increased consumption of red meat- especially processed meat is strongly related to weight gain.

Consumption of dairy products, low-fat or full-fat, did not really affect their weights.

“The fat content of dairy products did not seem to be important for weight gain. In fact, when people consumed more low-fat dairy products, they actually increased their consumption of carbs, which may promote weight gain. This suggests that people compensate, over years, for the lower calories in low-fat dairy by increasing their carb intake”, explained author Dr. Jessica Smith from Friedman.

Variations with food combinations are also expounded. Research suggests that increased consumption of red meat as well as foods with high GL will more likely lead to weight gain than increased red meat consumption while eating more vegetables instead.

Increased consumption of nuts, fishes and other foods that promotes weight loss while eating high-quality carbs with less GL will probably enhance the weight loss effect but increased consumption of low quality carbs with higher GL will still lead to weight gain even if there’s an increased portions of nuts and fishes.

As have mentioned earlier, dairy and poultry products did not seem to affect the weight but research showed that there will still be weight gain if there’s an increased consumption of low-quality carbs.

Researchers recommend more nuts, fishes and other protein-rich foods while avoiding low quality carbs that can be seen from starches, grains and sugars.
Let’s have a short FoodFacts.com refresher course in carbs. Carbohydrates are in just about everything we eat. Low quality carbohydrates are often referred to as simple carbs. They contain smaller molecules of sugar that are easily absorbed by your body. The energy is stored as glycogen in our cells and if not used immediately they are converted into fat. These are generally found in processed foods — things like candy and desserts, sugary cereals, sodas and other sugary beverages and refined breads. These products, and others like them, fall higher on the glycemic index than quality carbs like whole grain breads, unprocessed whole grain cereals, green vegetables and fresh fruits.

We can see again that fresh whole foods are the healthiest, most beneficial dietary choices we can make. As often as possible, preparing foods in our own kitchens gives us the best opportunity for optimal health.

http://www.dailytimesgazette.com/study-finds-low-quality-carbs-culprit-weight-gain/4454/

For women, exposure to pesticides increases the risk of heart disease

epa-to-Even if you’re eating an organic diet, pesticides are sneaking their way into your body. They’re in the environment and, in some areas, unavoidable. In this world of genetically modified crops that are pesticide resistant, their use in agriculture isn’t going away. New research is revealing that even pesticides that have been banned but remain the environment are having real health effects — especially for women.

Pesticide exposure, not obesity alone, can contribute to increased cardiovascular disease risk and inflammation in premenopausal women, according to a new study published in the Endocrine Society’s Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

The study looked at the effects of exposure to polychlorinated pesticides such as DDT. Although DDT was banned in many countries in the 1970s, it remains widespread in the environment and food supply.

DDT was one of the first recognized endocrine-disrupting chemicals, according to the introductory guide to endocrine-disrupting chemicals published by the Endocrine Society and IPEN. DDT and related pesticides are known as environmental estrogens because they can mimic and interfere with the function of the hormone estrogen. Research has found DDT exposure is linked to birth defects, reduced fertility and increased risk of Type 2 diabetes.

“After the body breaks down DDT along with similar pesticides, chemical remnants called metabolites accumulate in women’s fat tissue,” said one of the study’s authors, Diana Teixeira, PhD student of the Faculty of Medicine, University of Porto in Porto, Portugal. “When higher amounts of these environmental estrogens collect in the fat tissue, it can compromise the protective effect the body’s natural estrogen has on a premenopausal woman’s heart health. This leaves women at increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease and inflammation.”

The study analyzed the amount of endocrine-disrupting chemicals in fat tissue and blood samples from 121 obese women who underwent bariatric surgery at S. João Hospital in Porto. Among the participants, 73 were classified as premenopausal and 48 were postmenopausal. The researchers tested the participants’ fasting blood glucose and cholesterol. Using the Framingham risk score, the researchers assessed the women’s 10-year risk of developing cardiovascular disease.

Researchers found that among premenopausal women, women with higher concentrations of environmental estrogens in their visceral fat tissue from the belly were more likely to have higher average blood sugar levels. Among premenopausal women, those with higher levels of environmental estrogens in their blood tended to have more inflammation and faced a greater risk of cardiovascular disease on the Framingham scale.

“Our findings show that endocrine-disrupting chemicals tend to aggravate complications of obesity, including inflammation and cardiovascular disease risk, in premenopausal women,” Teixeira said. “Measuring environmental estrogen levels may help physicians identify women who are at risk of developing cardiovascular and metabolic disease so they can take preventative action.”

FoodFacts.com often finds research like this to be a wake up call to industry. Instead of finding ways to reduce the use of pesticides, manufacturers found a way to make crops resistant to pesticides. You can’t genetically modify people to be resistant though. And, ultimately, people will pay that price. While we can’t avoid environmental estrogen, we can take a stand and advocate for our own health and the health of women worldwide.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/04/150408131329.htm

Eat eggs and reduce your risk of type 2 diabetes

egg1Does anyone remember the “no tat” craze during the 1990s? The grocery store shelves were lined with non-fat products — non-fat cheese, fat-free ice cream, fat-free cookies — even fat free bologna. Statistically, America actually got fatter while this was going on … all the time believing that we were doing the best thing for our health.

One of the biggest taboos during the fat-free era were eggs, or more specifically egg yolks. That’s when the egg white trend started. Long after most of those fat-free products disappeared from the grocery shelves, or at least took a back seat to lower fat or full fat items, the trend against whole fresh eggs continued. It did die down slowly but surely as new research and advice found that whole egg consumption (in moderation) is actually healthy. Today there’s more research showing more health benefits from the incredible, edible egg.

Type 2 diabetes is becoming increasingly widespread throughout the world. Research has shown that lifestyle habits, such as exercise and nutrition, play a crucial role in the development of the disease. In some studies, high-cholesterol diets have been associated with disturbances in glucose metabolism and risk of type 2 diabetes. In contrast, in some experimental studies, the consumption of eggs has led to improved glucose balance, among other things. However, there is no experimental data available on the effects of egg consumption on the incidence of type 2 diabetes. In population-based studies, too, the association between egg consumption and type 2 diabetes has been investigated only scarcely, and the findings have been inconclusive. Egg consumption has either been associated with an elevated risk, or no association has been found.

The dietary habits of 2,332 men aged between 42 and 60 years were assessed at the baseline of the Kuopio Ischaemic Heart Disease Risk Factor Study, KIHD, at the University of Eastern Finland in 1984-1989. During a follow-up of 19.3 years, 432 men were diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.

The study found that egg consumption was associated with a lower risk of type 2 diabetes as well as with lower blood glucose levels. Men who ate approximately four eggs per week had a 37 per cent lower risk of type 2 diabetes than men who only ate approximately one egg per week. This association persisted even after possible confounding factors such as physical activity, body mass index, smoking and consumption of fruits and vegetables were taken into consideration. The consumption of more than four eggs did not bring any significant additional benefits.

A possible explanation is that unlike in many other populations, egg consumption in Finland is not strongly associated with unhealthy lifestyle habits such as smoking, low physical activity or consumption of processed meats. In addition to cholesterol, eggs contain many beneficial nutrients that can have an effect on, for example, glucose metabolism and low-grade inflammation, and thus lower the risk of type 2 diabetes. The study also suggests that the overall health effects of foods are difficult to anticipate based on an individual nutrient such as cholesterol alone. Indeed, instead of focusing on individual nutrients, nutrition research has increasingly focused on the health effects of whole foods and diets over the past few years.

Fresh eggs are real food. FoodFacts.com believes that focusing our diets as much as possible on fresh, whole foods benefits our health. More and more research is released almost daily testifying to the importance of our dietary habits. We strive for balance, moderation and nutritional quality in the foods we choose to consume. We hope you do, too!

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/04/150402081806.htm

Baskin Robbins Whaddaya Say Creme Brulee Ice Cream … what’s inside the unusual new flavor

baskin-robbins1We’re not big fans of Baskin Robbins ice cream. FoodFacts.com is positive when the original 31 flavors debuted, their ingredient lists looked nothing like they do today. And while the tremendous choices offered are a great selling point for the company, they do resemble the fast food version of ice cream. There are just too many questionable ingredients lurking in even the simplest flavor Baskin Robbins offers.

The newest flavor, however, is far from simple. Whaddaya Say Creme Brulee offers the taste of the popular dessert cold in a cone or cup. We’re not entirely sure there are any number of ice cream aficionados clamoring for a creme brulee flavor. But it’s here. Now let’s take a look at what’s actually inside it.

Nutrition Facts for a large 4 ounce serving:

Calories:                     260
Fat:                              11 grams
Saturated Fat:            7 grams
Cholesterol:               55 mg
Sugar:                         31 grams

Fairly average nutrition facts for ice cream. While the sugar content is a bit high, there’s nothing out of the ordinary here. Ice cream is a sweet treat best enjoyed in moderation. It’s made from milk, cream, eggs and sugar with chocolate, caramel, vanilla, nuts or fruits — to name just a few flavor additions that make ice cream so much fun to eat.

What’s used to create Whaddaya Say Creme Brulee?

Cream, Creme Brulee Ribbon (Sugar, Corn Syrup, Water, Caramel Color, Pectin, Natural Flavor, Vanilla Extract), Nonfat Milk, Creme Brulee Candy (Sugar, Corn Syrup), Sugar, Corn Syrup, Creme Brulee Flavored Base (Corn Syrup, Water, Brown Sugar, Caramel Color, Natural Flavor), French Custard Base [Sugar, Sugared Egg Yolk (Egg Yolks, Sugar), Water], Whey Powder, Stabilizer/Emulsifier Blend (Cellulose Gum, Mono and Diglycerides, Guar Gum, Carrageenan, Polysorbate 80).

There are some recognizable ice cream ingredients in here — cream, milk, sugar, egg yolk. But there’s also Caramel Color, Natural Flavor, Carrageenan and Polysorbate 80.

We never really considered turning the hot, creamy, sugary dessert that is creme brulee into an ice cream. Part of the fun of real creme brulee is breaking through the torched sugary crust on the top to reach the custard underneath. Can’t do that with ice cream. But what we really can’t do are those nasty ingredients we try hard to avoid.

Though somewhat less offensive than the ingredient lists of other Baskin Robbins flavors, we’re still saying no to Whaddaya Say Creme Brulee. Not happening here.

https://www.baskinrobbins.com/content/baskinrobbins/en/products/icecream/flavors.html

Dunkin Donuts latest mash-up … the Oreo Cheesecake Square Donut

images (1)Here’s another new fast food offering that had a product developer thinking about “what would happen if …”

This particular if was combining Oreo cheesecake squares with donuts. While we can see how this might make some people excited, FoodFacts.com isn’t particularly thrilled with the concept. Oreo cheesecake squares are a popular, semi-homemade dessert. They’re already nutritionally questionable by themselves. Honestly, every cheesecake is. Anyone attempting a healthy lifestyle is already saving these small gems for special occasions and generally not thinking about them for breakfast — or an afternoon snack for that matter. And then you have donuts. Popular? Yes. Nutritionally beneficial? No.

Leave it to Dunkin to put the two together into one perfectly square morning meal option.

But before we pass judgement, let’s take a look at what’s actually in the new Oreo Cheesecake Square Donuts masterminded by Dunkin.

Nutrition Facts:

Calories:                      370
Fat:                              18 grams
Saturated Fat:            8 grams
Cholesterol:               10 mg
Sugar:                         22 grams

While the facts aren’t good, they do pretty much line up with the rest of Dunkins specialty donuts, give or take a few calories, grams of fat and sugar. That doesn’t make the Oreo Cheesecake Square donuts a good option. But it does make us wonder how they’re made. Cheese cake is notoriously laden with calories and fat — so how did Dunkin manage to put it in a donut and keep the nutrition facts analogous with the rest of their offerings?

Let’s take a look:

Donut: Enriched Wheat Flour (Flour, Malted Barley Flour, Niacin, Reduced Iron, Thiamin Mononitrate, Riboflavin, Folic Acid), Water, Palm Oil, Yeast Donut Concentrate [Soy Flour, Salt, Pregelatinized Wheat Starch, Whey (Milk), Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate, Baking Soda, Nonfat Milk, Gum Blend (Cellulose, Guar, Acacia, Carrageenan, Xanthan), Sodium Caseinate (Milk), Sodium Stearoyl Lactylate, Eggs, Soybean Oil, Soy Lecithin, Natural and Artificial Flavor, Annatto and Turmeric (Colors)], Dextrose, Soybean Oil, Yeast, Mono and Diglycerides; Cream Cheese Filling: Cream Cheese (Pasteurized Milk and Cream, Cheese Culture, Whey Protein Concentrate, Salt, Xanthan and/or Carob Bean Gum), Water, Sugar, Corn Syrup, Modified Food Starch, Contains 2% or less of each of the following: Partially Hydrogenated Soybean Oil with Mono and Diglycerides, Cultured Nonfat Dry Milk, Nonfat Dry Milk, Titanium Dioxide (Color), Salt, Glucono Delta Lactone, Sorbic Acid (Preservative), Artificial Flavor, Yellow 5 and Yellow 6; White Icing: Sugar, Water, Corn Syrup, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Partially Hydrogenated Soybean and/or Cottonseed Oil, Contains 2% or less of: Maltodextrin, Dextrose, Soybean Oil, Corn Starch, Sodium Propionate and Potassium Sorbate (Preservatives), Salt, Titanium Dioxide (Color), Citric Acid, Polyglycerol Esters of Fatty Acids, Agar, Soy Lecithin (Emulsifier), Artificial Flavor; OREO® Crumb Topping: Sugar, Unbleached Enriched Flour (Wheat Flour, Niacin, Reduced Iron, Thiamin Mononitrate, Riboflavin, Folic Acid), High Oleic Canola Oil and/or Palm Oil and/or Canola Oil and/or Soybean Oil, Cocoa processed with alkali, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Cornstarch, Leavening (Baking Soda and/or Calcium Phosphate), Salt, Soy Lecithin (Emulsifier), Vanillin (an Artificial Flavor), Chocolate.

So obviously there’s no real cheesecake filling going on inside the donut. There is cream cheese filling that we could probably liken to cream cheese frosting. It looks like cheesecake filling because of the use of artificial colors. And let’s not forget the artificial flavors used in the creation of the donut, the filling, the icing and the Oreo topping. Throw in a little partially hydrogenated oil, and high fructose corn syrup — and, well, you get the picture.

If you’re craving Oreo cheesecake squares, they’re fairly easy to prepare at home. They aren’t the best nutritional choice you can make. And they still do contain Oreos (which have some problems in and of themselves.) But at least you can be sure what’s in the rest of the squares you’ve prepared.

It’s honestly a better choice. Sorry, Dunkin — we’re not trying this one.

http://www.dunkindonuts.com/content/dunkindonuts/en/menu/food/bakery/donuts/donuts.html?DRP_FLAVOR=OREO+Cheesecake+Square+Donut

Kidney damage from drinking iced tea?

ice-tea-kidney-failureFoodFacts.com is constantly promoting the detrimental health effects of drinking soda and advocating for a different daily beverage of choice. Many people who are avoiding soda turn to iced tea as that beverage. We’re hopeful, of course, that they’re brewing their own tea at home because, honestly, the prepared iced tea available in cans, bottles and jugs in our grocery stores are just as chemically laden as the soda they’re trying to avoid. But that’s not what this story is about. It’s about the detrimental health effects of drinking iced tea like it’s water throughout the day. Read on, especially if you’re an iced tea fan.

Doctors traced an Arkansas man’s kidney failure to an unusual cause — his habit of drinking a gallon of iced tea each day.

They ruled out several potential causes before stumbling on a reason for the 56-year-old man’s kidney problems. He said he drank about 16 8-ounce cups of iced tea every day. Black tea has a chemical known to cause kidney stones or even kidney failure in excessive amounts.

“It was the only reasonable explanation,” said Dr. Umbar Ghaffar of the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in Little Rock. She and two other doctors describe the case in The New England Journal of Medicine.

The unidentified man went to the hospital with nausea, weakness, fatigue and body aches. Doctors determined his kidneys were badly clogged and inflamed by the food chemical called oxalate. The man is on dialysis, perhaps for the rest of his life, Ghaffar said.

Besides black tea, oxalate is found in spinach, rhubarb, nuts, wheat bran and chocolate. In rare cases, too much oxalate can lead to kidney trouble, but often there’s a contributing intestinal problem. That didn’t seem to be the case for the Arkansas man, and he had no family or personal history of kidney disease.

At 16 cups of iced black tea each day, he was taking in three to 10 times more oxalate than the average American, Ghaffar and her colleagues reported.

Federal studies suggest that, on average, U.S. adults drink a total of 10 or 11 cups of beverages per day — that’s water, coffee and all other liquids combined.

Ghaffar didn’t know if the man drank sugar-sweetened iced tea — the way it is usually served in the South. While he’d had diabetes, that did not cause his kidney problems, she said.

The Arkansas case appears to be very unusual, said Dr. Randy Luciano, a Yale School of Medicine kidney specialist who has treated people with kidney damage from too much oxalate.

“I wouldn’t tell people to stop drinking tea,” said Luciano, who was not involved in the research. What the man drank “is a lot of tea.”

Iced tea isn’t soda. And if you’re drinking real tea, you are avoiding the problems inherent in consuming the chemicals that make soda a terrible dietary choice. But it isn’t water either. And while doctors acknowledge that this was a rare case, the man involved was drinking iced tea like it was water, consuming 128 ounces of the beverage daily.

Moderation is important for everything we consume and variety is an important part of a healthy diet. So if you like tea, or any other beverage for that matter, it’s best to make sure it’s not your only daily drink. Negative health effects can arise from the over-consumption of anything — even healthier options.

http://triblive.com/usworld/nation/8113311-74/kidney-tea-iced#ixzz3WoLhBbDB

Ancient food remedy kills MRSA bacteria

re-2Hippocrates really knew what he was talking about. “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be they food.” This astounding information certainly goes a long way in backing up the philosopher’s words.

A 1,000-year-old treatment for eye infections could hold the key to killing antibiotic-resistant superbugs, experts have said.

Scientists recreated a 9th Century Anglo-Saxon remedy using onion, garlic and part of a cow’s stomach.

They were “astonished” to find it almost completely wiped out methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus, otherwise known as MRSA.

Their findings will be presented at a national microbiology conference.

The remedy was found in Bald’s Leechbook – an old English manuscript containing instructions on various treatments held in the British Library.

Anglo-Saxon expert Dr Christina Lee, from the University of Nottingham, translated the recipe for an “eye salve”, which includes garlic, onion or leeks, wine and cow bile.

Experts from the university’s microbiology team recreated the remedy and then tested it on large cultures of MRSA.

The leechbook is one of the earliest examples of what might loosely be called a medical textbook.  It seems Anglo-Saxon physicians may actually have practiced something pretty close to the modern scientific method, with its emphasis on observation and experimentation.

Bald’s Leechbook could hold some important lessons for our modern day battle with anti-microbial resistance.

In each case, they tested the individual ingredients against the bacteria, as well as the remedy and a control solution.

They found the remedy killed up to 90% of MRSA bacteria and believe it is the effect of the recipe rather than one single ingredient.

Dr Freya Harrison said the team thought the eye salve might show a “small amount of antibiotic activity”.

“But we were absolutely blown away by just how effective the combination of ingredients was,” she said.

Dr Lee said there are many similar medieval books with treatments for what appear to be bacterial infections.

She said this could suggest people were carrying out detailed scientific studies centuries before bacteria were discovered.

The team’s findings will be presented at the Annual Conference of the Society for General Microbiology, in Birmingham.

While FoodFacts.com does understand that our ancestors used leeches to “suck out” infections (which was not only nasty,painful, and useless but likely also unsanitary), they also turned to the natural world around them for medication. It’s an idea that scientists and physicians are getting back to in their research. We’re pretty sure modern medicine and science will continue to find more surprising efficacy from old medicine texts like this one.

Hippocrates was definitely on to something. Food medicine can kill MRSA, which is sometimes referred to as a “superbug” because of its drug resistance. What else can it do?

We’re looking forward to finding out!

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-nottinghamshire-32117815

Too much processed packaged food contains too much sodium

KFC_Bandung_Supermall-300x199Just last week we learned that packaged processed foods account for the majority of grocery spending in America. We’re already aware that Americans consume too much sodium. So this new information shouldn’t be too surprising.

According to a recent study conducted by the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) packaged and processed foods contain too much salt. Around 80 percent of the excessive salt intake is caused by the packaged grocery store food.

CDC stated that 77% of the excessive salt consumption was due to restaurant meals and other packaged foods that were all found to contain a very high amount of salt. They found that home cooked food had lesser amount of salt hence good for health.

“Americans consume an average of 3,500 milligrams (mg) of sodium each day (excluding salt added at the table). But the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2010, recommend limiting sodium to less than 2,300 mg a day. About six in 10 adults should further limit sodium to 1,500 mg a day,” states CDC in its official report.

“Although most of the regional differences found did not have a clear direction or contributor, some may relate to regional variations in the popularity of specific types of products within a food category,” CDC said.

“We looked at bread, cold cuts, pizza, poultry, soup, sandwiches, cheese, pasta-mixed dishes, meat-mixed dishes and savory snacks,” she said.

It may become a surprise for many people that bread is actually a high offender when it comes to salt but in fact most of the sodium people intake comes from bread.

“A lot of foods that people don’t think taste salty do actually have a lot of sodium in them. So, we recommend people just read those nutrition labels, make comparisons, try to choose lower sodium options, be sure to eat more fresh fruits, vegetables and meats and cook more at home because that way you have more control over the amount of sodium.”

FoodFacts.com wants to emphasize the idea that America’s salt problem isn’t a result of the salt in their salt shakers. It’s a result of the salt in the processed foods in our grocery stores. Shop carefully. Understand the differences in processed foods and if you can’t eliminate them completely from your diet, stay away from highly processed items. Shop for ingredients you need to prepare meals, not prepared meals. We can get sodium consumption under control with understanding, awareness and action. We’ll all be healthier for it.

http://www.theamericanregister.com/cdc-says-packaged-processed-food-contains-too-much-sodium/10491/