Category Archives: Uncategorized

Black Rice Higher In Antioxidants Than Berries

Move aside berries, black rice has just been shown to be the better source of antioxidants, without all the natural sugar.

Researchers at the Department of Food Science at Louisiana State University Agricultural Center in Baton Rouge, La. reported to the 240th National Meeting of the American Chemical Society (ACS) that the relatively unknown black rice is an excellent source of antioxidants. “Just a spoonful of black rice bran contains more health promoting anthocyanin antioxidants than are found in a spoonful of blueberries, but with less sugar and more fiber and vitamin E antioxidants,” said Zhimin Xu, of  LSU, who reported on the findings. “If berries are used to boost health, why not black rice and black rice bran? Especially, black rice bran would be a unique and economical material to increase consumption of health promoting antioxidants.” Black rice is used in some parts of Asia for pudding, decoration, sushi and noodles. With this new research into the health benefits of black rice, U.S. farmers are likely to start growing and using it as well.

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How Exercise Alters Appetite

A new reason to exercise has just surfaced from the scientific community. Burning calories and triggering endorphins can welcome another very useful benefit from exercise, a more attuned appetite.

In a study led by Brazilian researchers at the University of Campinas that will be published next week in the free access journal PLoS Biology, scientists discovered that exercise restores the body’s sensitivity to being full. The part of the brain the registers satiety (being full) regains its ability to regulate the appropriate amount of food needed by the body. “In obese animals, exercise increased IL-6 and IL-10 protein levels in the hypothalamus, and these molecules were crucial for increasing the sensitivity of the most important hormones, insulin and leptin, which control appetite,” explained José Barreto C. Carvalheira who led the research group. The scientists explained that by restoring the body’s natural ability to regulate appetite, less over eating will occur and all around health will improve as a result.

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Berries Naturally Remove Brain Toxins

Berries have long had the reputation of being an excellent source of antioxidants, but new research is showing that berries also benefit what is being called a “housekeeper” mechanism in the brain. This holds the potential to keep brains healthier longer.

Shibu Poulose, Ph.D. and James Joseph, Ph.D. studied berries and discovered that polyphenols (antioxidants) serve a purpose unique to the brain. Antioxidants in the berries restore the “housekeeper” cells (microglia) in the brain. “But in aging, microglia fail to do their work, and debris builds up,” Poulose explained. “In addition, the microglia become over-activated and actually begin to damage healthy cells in the brain. Our research suggests that the polyphenolics in berries have a rescuing effect. They seem to restore the normal housekeeping function. These findings are the first to show these effects of berries.” Although berries are one of the better sources for antioxidants many vegetables and some nuts are also excellent sources as well.

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Home Brewed vs Bottled Tea

For the first time researchers have measured healthful antioxidant levels in commercially available bottled tea beverages and found that there is a big difference between drinking traditionally home brewed tea and mass produced bottled tea.

Scientists Shiming Li, Ph.D., Professor Chi-Tang Ho and his colleagues reported at the 240th National Meeting of the American Chemical Society (ACS). The researchers explained that some of the commercially available bottled teas contain as low as 1/20th the amount of antioxidants (polyphenols) as tea that is prepared and consumed traditionally. “Consumers understand very well the concept of the health benefits from drinking tea or consuming other tea products,” said Shiming Li. “However, there is a huge gap between the perception that tea consumption is healthy and the actual amount of the healthful nutrients — polyphenols — found in bottled tea beverages. Our analysis of tea beverages found that the polyphenol content is extremely low.” In addition to low polyphenol content, these bottled teas have large sugar content. Li continuted: “Someone would have to drink bottle after bottle of these teas in some cases to receive health benefits,” he said. “I was surprised at the low polyphenol content. I didn’t expect it to be at such a low level.” Tea is the most widely consumed beverage in the world, after water of course.

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ADHD Linked To Food Pesticides

Common pesticides found on fruit and vegetables are being linked to attention disorders in young children who were exposed to the pesticides while in utero.

Research from the University of California, Berkeley has just been published in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives (EHP) explainging the connection between syndromes like ADHD and the widely used pesticides called organophosphates. “It’s known that food is a significant source of pesticide exposure among the general population,” said Brenda Eskenazi, UC Berkeley professor of epidemiology and of maternal and child health. “I would recommend thoroughly washing fruits and vegetables before eating them, especially if you’re pregnant.” The analyst at UC Berkeley’s School of Public Health during the study, Amy Marks, cautioned that “Given that these compounds are designed to attack the nervous system of organisms, there is reason to be cautious, especially in situations where exposure may coincide with critical periods of fetal and child development.” “High levels of the symptoms of ADHD by age 5 are a major contributor to learning and achievement problems in school, accidental injuries at home and in the neighborhood, and a host of problems in peer relationships and other essential competencies,” said UC Berkeley psychology professor Stephen Hinshaw, one of the country’s leading experts on ADHD, who was not part of this study. “Finding preventable risk factors is therefore a major public health concern.”

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Chicken Farm Food Linked To Water Pollution

New research has revealed a troubling connection between chicken farming and water pollution. Arsenic that starts as a common product in large poultry farms has been ending up in agricultural soils and nearby streams and rivers.

According to studies by scientists at the USDA-Agricultural Research Service (ARS), the arsenic originates in a product called roxarsone that poultry farmers feed to their chickens to cause them to bulk up. The arsenic then passes through to the chicken waste, which is then used as a fertilizer around the country.

ARS scientists spent two years measuring arsenic levels in farm field runoffs and seven drainage ditches around the Delmarva Peninsula (Delaware, Maryland, Virginia), an area where large-scale poultry production has been thriving for decades.
Roxarsone, and chicken feed with arsenic in general, is banned in Europe and is being used gradually less as more studies surface about its associated hazards. One of the largest poultry farmers, Tyson, discontinued its use in 2006.
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Pain Killers Linked To Asthma

Scientists are now reporting that acetaminophen,  the active ingredient in pain killers like Tylenol, appears to be the cause of asthma in young teenagers.

“This study has identified that the reported use of acetaminophen in 13- and 14 year old adolescent children was associated with an exposure-dependent increased risk of asthma symptoms,” said the study’s lead author Richard Beasley, M.D., professor of medicine, at the Medical Research Institute of New Zealand. The research was performed on behalf of the International Study of Asthma and Allergies in Childhood (ISAAC). After studying 300,000 13-14 year olds, researchers were able to identify up to a two and a half time increased risk of having asthma from regular use of pain killers containing acetaminophen. “The overall population attributable risks for current symptoms of severe asthma were around 40 percent, suggesting that if the associations were causal, they would be of major public health significance,” said Dr. Beasley. “Randomized controlled trials are now urgently required to investigate this relationship further and to guide the use of antipyretics, not only in children but in pregnancy and adult life.”

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Nitrate Free Cured Meats

In an effort to meet the demand for cured meat that does not contain the chemical preservatives known as nitrates/nitrites, manufacturers have been increasing their output of cured meat that contains natural preservatives.

Naturally cured meats look and taste the same as the hot dogs and sausages that we are used to, only they don’t have the dangerous chemical preservatives. Organic cured meat producers have found the naturally occurring nitrates found in vegetables to be the perfect substitute. According to  Joseph Sebranek, an Iowa State University food science professor, “Consumers can’t tell the difference, except that they’re labeled natural and organic.” Natural/Organic cured meats can be found at stores like Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s or your local health food stores around the U.S. and in many places internationally.

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Cell Phone Radiation: Best & Worst Phones

The debate about whether or not electromagnetic fields (EMF’s), that cell phones radiate, are dangerous continues throughout the country. The answers about cell phone radiation safety may be a long time off and many people want to err on the side of safety.

While waiting for a definitive conclusion about EMF’s please find this list of the ten highest and ten lowest emitting phones currently on the market. Top Ten Lowest Emitting Cell Phones:

  1. Sanyo Katana II
  2. Samsung Rugby (SGH-a837)
  3. Samsung Memoir (SGH-T929)
  4. Samsung (SGH-t229)
  5. Helio Pantech Ocean
  6. Sony Ericsson W518a
  7. Samsung (SGH-a137)
  8. LG Shine II
  9. LG CF369
  10. Samsung Flight (SGH-A797)

Top Ten Highest Emitting Cell Phones:

  1. Motorola W385
  2. Motorola Boost i290
  3. HTC Magic
  4. Kyocera Jax S1300
  5. Motorola i355
  6. Motorola Bosst i335
  7. Blackberry Bold 9700
  8. Motorola Moto VE440
  9. Palm Pixi
  10. Blackberry 8820

For those of you who have an iphone 3GS and want to know where exactly it falls on this list, well it’s just about right in the middle. Cell phone radiation isn’t going away, nor is the debate over it’s safety. Hopefully this information will be helpful.

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GMO Crops Found In The Wild

One of the warnings that GMO opponents have continually issued since the beginning of Genetically Modified crop use is that genes from GMO’s would spread to the wild and reek havoc on natural biodiversity. It appears that they may be right.

Scientists from the University of Arkansas, North Dakota State University, California State University, Fresno and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency have announced their discovery of established populations of genetically modified plants living in the wild, a finding that is sure to stir controversy around an already hot button issue. The researchers collected over 400 canola plants and found that 86% of them contained GMO genes. “There were also two instances of multiple transgenes in single individuals,” explained one of the study’s coauthors Cynthia Sagers, University of Arkansas. “Varieties with multiple transgenic traits have not yet been released commercially, so this finding suggests that feral populations are reproducing and have become established outside of cultivation. These observations have important implications for the ecology and management of native and weedy species, as well as for the management of biotech products in the U.S.” said Sagers. The battle over GMO crops continually rages between those that feel this technology is to dangerous to be used until they are further tested and proven safe, and those that feel that science has already

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