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Posts tagged food

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A tick bite can make you allergic to red meat

AP report on some food allergies apparently being spread by ticks in the United States:

The bugs harbor a sugar that humans don’t have, called alpha-gal. The sugar is also is found in red meat - beef, pork, venison, rabbit - and even some dairy products. It’s usually fine when people encounter it through food that gets digested.

But a tick bite triggers an immune system response, and in that high-alert state, the body perceives the sugar the tick transmitted to the victim’s bloodstream and skin as a foreign substance, and makes antibodies to it. That sets the stage for an allergic reaction the next time the person eats red meat and encounters the sugar.

The Wikipedia article for the allergy mentions a replacement heart valve triggering anaphylaxis in someone, which is especially horrifying.

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No link found between saturated fat and heart disease

Sarah Knapton of The Telegraph on a meta-analysis by folks at Cambridge University:

The team, whose results appear in the journal Annals of Internal Medicine, conducted a “meta-analysis” of data from 72 studies involving more than 600,000 participants from 18 countries.

A key finding was that total saturated fat, whether measured in the diet or the bloodstream, showed no association with heart disease.

'Ili: brb eating a stick of butter

Colin: It’s hilarious to me how absolutely little we know about nutrition.

Colin: This is why the question “What can we know and how do we know that we know it?” is important.

'Ili: I liked this part of the article, by the way:

Prof Tom Sanders of King’s College London said: …

"Studies like this just cause a lot of confusion and undermine sensible dietary advice by given in the UK which has had some degree of success in reducing heart disease in the UK.

"Indeed, death rates from cardiovascular disease have fallen by 55 per cent since 1997 despite the increase in obesity so we must be getting something right."

'Ili: THIS META-ANALYSIS IS WRONG BECAUSE REAAASOOOOOOOOOOOOOONS

Colin: That’s not

Colin: This

Colin: DID YOU NOT TAKE STATISTICS

'Ili: If he's a nutritionist, probably not.

Colin: looooool accurate :(

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Lift Labs March Match

In January, I posted the launch video of Liftware, a spoon with stabilizers in it that keep it steady for people who suffer from Parkinson’s and other ailments.

They now have an Indiegogo campaign, not to fund development or anything, but rather to fundraise for people who can’t afford one:

Last fall, Lift Labs introduced Liftware to help people whose hand tremor gets in the way of simple tasks like eating. We started shipping Liftware in December, and we’ve been blown away by the positive response from both Liftware users and the community.

This March, in honor of Essential Tremor awareness month, we are introducing the Lift Labs March Match Tremor Campaign. Through the month of March, you can buy a Liftware (or part of a Liftware device) for someone in need through Indiegogo. Lift Labs will match your contributions, dollar for dollar, up to $50,000.

Fantastic.

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Family hallucinates after eating LSD-tainted meat

Jenn Harris on The Los Angeles Times's Daily Dish blog:

Police are investigating an incident involving a Tampa, Fla., family who reported having hallucinations after eating meat found to be tainted with LSD last week.

After eating the meat last Monday, Ronnie became ill, and shortly after, Rosado and her husband were hospitalized. The two daughters, 6 and 7, said they experienced hallucinations. The family was released from the hospital later in the week.

How in the heck does that happen?

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Marmite and Irn-Bru not banned, but only "Canadian compliant formulations" allowed, says CFIA

Michael Woods, Ottawa Citizen:

Fans of Irn-Bru and Marmite can heave a sigh of relief and stop stockpiling: the popular British food imports aren’t banned in Canada after all, according to the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.

However, only specific formulations of the British favourites that meet Canadian standards are allowed.

The CFIA released a statement Saturday evening in an apparent attempt to quell growing outrage over news food safety officials seized several British food products from a Saskatoon store last week.

Ten years from now, will you remember where you were when the Great Marmite Scare happened?

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In coldest weather, recipe for safer roads goes beyond the usual sprinkling of salt

Carolyn Thompson, AP:

Across the nation’s snow belt, transportation officials are in the market for cheap and environmentally friendly ways to make rock salt work better by keeping it on the roads longer and melting ice at lower temperatures.

In Milwaukee, road crews are experimenting with plentiful cheese brine, a leftover from cheese making. New York and Pennsylvania are among states trying sugar beet juice, while molasses and potato juice are flavoring roads elsewhere.

Molasses-covered tires: a regional delicacy sweeping across state fairs in America like wildfire.

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F.D.A. Restricts Antibiotics Use for Livestock

Sabrina Tavernise, The New York Times:

The Food and Drug Administration on Wednesday put in place a major new policy to phase out the indiscriminate use of antibiotics in cows, pigs and chickens raised for meat, a practice that experts say has endangered human health by fueling the growing epidemic of antibiotic resistance.

The change, which is to take effect over the next three years, will effectively make it illegal for farmers and ranchers to use antibiotics to make animals grow bigger.

Naturally, there are concerns about loopholes and enforcement powers not being strong enough, but this is a pretty big step for us.

Europe has been experimenting with reducing antibiotic use in livestock.

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National Restaurant Chains Expand In Alaska

AP reports on chain restaurants opening up in Alaska:

When Olive Garden opened, people stood in line in the bitter winter to get a table. Buffalo Wild Wings is in the city. Next year, Anchorage will get its first Texas Roadhouse, a Hard Rock Cafe and Krispy Kreme doughnut shops.

"We are foodies in Anchorage, and we are significant consumers," said Bill Popp, president of the Anchorage Economic Development Corp, adding that one reason for the influx is the relative health of the local economy and people having money to spend.

I really like how the author put Popp’s quote declaring Anchorage as a city of foodies right next to the opening of a Krispy Kreme.

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Phytoliths in Pottery Reveal the Use of Spice in European Prehistoric Cuisine

Paper by some European researchers published last week on PLOS ONE:

Here we present evidence of phytoliths preserved in carbonised food deposits on prehistoric pottery from the western Baltic dating from 6,100 cal BP to 5750 cal BP. Based on comparisons to over 120 European and Asian species, our observations are consistent with phytolith morphologies observed in modern garlic mustard seed (Alliaria petiolata (M. Bieb) Cavara & Grande). As this seed has a strong flavour, little nutritional value, and the phytoliths are found in pots along with terrestrial and marine animal residues, these findings are the first direct evidence for the spicing of food in European prehistoric cuisine.

Ker Than summarized the findings for National Geographic and talked with one of the authors, Oliver E. Craig of the University of York.