Articles on Food and nutrition

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Researchers can now explain exactly how Popeye got superhuman strength from spinach. Marius Watz

Popeye vindicated – why spinach is good for you

Researchers have finally caught up with the wisdom of mothers, who, for decades have been coaxing their children to eat spinach. We know this leafy green is a good source of folate, a very important B…
The star scheme is yet to undergo consumer testing to see if it helps guide healthier food choices. Bruce A Stockwell

Out with traffic lights, in with stars – next steps for food labelling

The federal government is likely to introduce a star system for food packages next year to help consumers make healthier food choices, ABC’s Lateline reported last week. Much like the energy star rating…
There is no evidence to support the claim that eating peanuts or peanut butter during pregnancy will make your child allergic to peanuts. Image from shutterstock.com

Monday’s medical myth: peanuts in pregnancy cause allergies

Anyone else have the feeling something radical has happened with peanut allergy in the past 30 years? I don’t recall knowing anyone allergic to peanuts or peanut butter as a child in the 1980s, yet today…
Swimming isn’t the best way to settle that full stomach but it’s unlikely to cause you to drown. Jaypeg

Monday’s medical myth: wait 30 minutes after eating before you swim

The old saying that you should wait at least 30 minutes after eating before you swim is based on the idea that after a big meal, blood will be diverted away from your arms and legs, towards your stomach’s…
The move to end the tax appears to be a political one. Sam Howzit

Denmark scraps fat tax in another Big Food victory

Denmark has scrapped the world’s first “fat tax”, which was charged on foods high in saturated fats, after just one year. Plans to introduce a tax on sugar have also been abandoned. In making the announcement…
Breathing through your mouth or chewing gum has no effect: the tear stimulus is in your eyes, not your nose or mouth. Flickr/tarale

Monday’s medical myth: chewing gum stops onion tears

The cultivated onion, Allium cepa, is a savoury staple of cuisines around the world. Yet slicing up onions all too often leads to tears: you peel off the papery outer skin, start chopping and before long…
Detox diets may do little harm, except to your bank balance, but neither do they do a lot of good. katstan

Monday’s medical myth: detox diets cleanse your body

Detox diets make amazing promises of dramatic weight loss and more energy – all achieved by flushing toxins from the body. Toxins have very little to do with it; detox diets “work” because of the very…
Unless you’re up to date with the healthy food guidelines, don’t preach to fat people about what they should eat. Stocky Bodies (Isaac Brown)

Doctor, don’t make assumptions about your fat patients

A couple of weeks back I awoke with a swollen and painful knee. I’ve had problem knees since high school and figured that this was just another chapter in the saga. Some days later I was fed up – my knee…
New York City’s health board is cracking down on sugary soft drinks, but Australian health experts say more is required to address the obesity epidemic. AAP

Plain packaging for junk food? Health experts call for govt intervention

Australia should consider a healthy food rebate, tax on sugary drinks, and regulated portion sizes argue health experts…
Apples with Elmo stickers were found to be more attractive to children. AAP

Branding drives children to make healthy choices too: study

Branding that’s targeted at children can make healthy food a more attractive option than unhealthy food, according to a new…
Health claims are commonly exploited to promote the consumption of highly processed foods. Flickr / ajleon

Health claims on food products: ministers put marketers in control

Australian and New Zealand ministers responsible for food regulation last week bowed to lobbying from processed food manufacturers and agreed to permit them to market products with general level health…
Samples of Lipton teas in China contained up to 13 pesticides, including banned substances. Paul Watson

Storm in a teacup: China’s Lipton contamination scare

Anyone care for a cup of Methomyl? A recent investigation by Greenpeace East Asia has uncovered a catalog of banned and highly dangerous pesticides in Lipton tea products sold on Beijing supermarket shelves…
Men generally prefer higher concentrations of sweet compared with women. Ethan

Monday’s medical myth: blame it on my sweet tooth

My wife says she has a sweet tooth. But doesn’t everyone? It’s universal to the human condition (as well as the human palate) to like something sweet. It may even be an evolutionary advantage to seek out…
One in four Australians are now obese. But when – and how – did we gain this weight? Kyle May

Mapping Australia’s collective weight gain

OBESE NATION: It’s time to admit it - Australia is becoming an obese nation. Today we launch a series looking at how this has happened and, more importantly, what we can do to stop the obesity epidemic…
There’s no evidence to show chocolate causes acne but milk may play a role. anjuli ayer

Monday’s medical myth: chocolate causes acne

Outbreaks of pimples, blackheads and cysts are a cause of enormous anxiety and embarrassment among teens and young adults. If you’re part of the 20% of Australians who have experienced severe acne, you’ve…
When cooked food falls below 60°C, it’s in the temperature danger zone. riebschlager

Monday’s medical myth: leave leftovers to cool before refrigerating

Food poisoning doesn’t just come from dodgy kebabs, under-cooked chicken and restaurants with poor hygiene practices – it can also occur in the home. And anyone who has suffered a bout of food poisoning…
Feeding the world is entirely feasible, but food distribution remains a significant challenge. edwin van buuringen

Meat consumption offers food for thought on global poverty

The Economist has its critics, but it still delivers lots of interesting data. I just found this table (published by EconomistDailyChart) of annual meat consumption per person by country. The data set…

Salmonella’s hypervirulent strains

New strains of salmonella that act like a Trojan Horse have been found, giving researchers a better chance at preventing…

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