Don’t Leave Without Breakfast

Yes, lord….the weekend and I can step back from all the mindless clap-trap and enjoy a couple days with my lady and my puppies…..

After a morning of waiting for the rest of the house to awaken I decided to do something I do very little of….watch TV.  Do you know how many times Law and Order:  SVU is on?  Personally I do not like cop shows they are mostly the same….so after trying to find something entertaining on the tube and failing I chose to do what I always do……READ!

When I was growing up it was a sin from my grandma if I did not eat a good breakfast…..we were not very well off but there was always breakfast food…..dinner may have been a bit light but breakfast was gonna be a large meal…..

So when I read this piece I closed my eyes and thanked my grandmother……

Researchers say they’ve found the most conclusive proof to date that a good breakfast translates into better grades for kids. In a large-scale study out of Cardiff University, researchers in Wales asked 5,000 children aged 9 to 11 to record everything they ate over 24 hours, from breakfast on the first day to breakfast on the second, reports the Guardian. The results showed that kids who ate a quality breakfast had twice the chance of receiving above-average scores in standardized assessment tests six to 18 months later, compared to those who skipped. The word “quality” is key: Kids who ate candy or other junk food for breakfast—about 20% reported doing so—saw no boost in scores.

This “offers the strongest evidence yet of links between aspects of what pupils eat and how well they do at school,” says the lead author in a release. While breakfast programs “can be seen as an unwelcome diversion,” they “might also deliver educational improvements,” the researcher adds. The head of one school tells the BBC that teachers can tell which students have skipped breakfast. “By around 10am they start flagging,” she says. “It has an effect on behavior and concentration.” In fact, teachers in the study estimated that kids who come to school hungry lose about two hours of learning a day, notes the International Business Times.

To this day I still cannot function with a good breakfast…..grandma was right….she was always right.

And what goes best with a good breakfast?

A good cup of Joe……

Good news, coffee drinkers: You’re less likely to die than those who steer clear of java. A new Harvard study finds regular coffee consumption not only boosts longevity but reduces your risk of diabetes, heart disease, and suicide. The study—based on surveys of more than 200,000 women and 50,000 men in the US—notes non-smokers who drink three to five cups of coffee daily are 15% less likely to die, reports CNN. Those who drink three cups or less have a 6% to 8% lower risk of death, while those who drink more than five cups have a 12% lower risk. The same applies to those who drink decaf, suggesting caffeine isn’t responsible for the benefits, per NPR. While the lead author notes coffee shouldn’t be used “as a strategy for prevention of the chronic diseases,” coffee is a good source of antioxidants, which fight DNA damage, per NBC News.

Also, “the chlorogenic acid, lignans, quinides, trigonelline, and magnesium in coffee reduce insulin resistance and systematic inflammation,” the authors add. However, “people should also be aware of the amount of added sugar to coffee drinks which can become a problem,” the author notes. Coffee drinkers in general were 10% less likely to die from heart disease, 9% to 27% less likely to die from neurological diseases like Parkinson’s and dementia, and 20% to 36% less likely to die from suicide. Interestingly, those who drank less than a cup of coffee a day had a 36% higher chance of suicide. “The main message is that people who enjoy drinking coffee should not worry about it being harmful for their health,” a researcher says. “Coffee may actually be beneficial to their health.” (Coffee might also clean your arteries.)

Damn!  It is great to see that some of my habits will not kill me…..

Enjoy your Sunday….I know I will…..


Is It Really All That Healthy?

One of the pleasures that I may still indulge myself is food……I enjoy a good wine, fine cheeses and a filet…..yes I eat red meat….I realize that that may not be too damn fashionable these days but screw it!

I you seen this new drink that is in the supermarkets these days….it is green….and not a good green….looks more like pond scum….but it is so healthy that just looking at it will cut your health problems in half (and overstatement but you get the jest)…..

Today skinny is the way….if you are not skin and bones then there is something seriously wrong with you or your eating habits… these people I have one simple statement for them…..BITE ME!

Anyway….there seems to be a growing problem with so-called “clean eating”……

It’s called “orthorexia”—an obsession with healthy, “clean eating”—and as it gains traction in this age of Instagrammed food photos, some think it should be recognized as its own eating disorder. “It’s really a real fixation,” one nutritionist tells NBC News of those who take things too far. “They almost get like a fan club, especially on social media.” Steven Bratman, a doctor who coined the term back in 1997, says it’s time to recognize it as a type of disorder on par with anorexia but distinct—i.e. the objective isn’t weight loss but purity. Still, many in the medical field cite a lack of sufficient research and too much overlap with currently described disorders, from anorexia to obsessive compulsive disorder, to warrant its own classification, reports the Washington Post. “The dietary obsessions that people get into with anorexia often lead into these kinds of concerns with proper nutrition and healthy eating,” says the director of an eating disorders program. “There’s a great deal of overlap.”

Still, while he says “we treat people based on research,” he concedes it isn’t necessarily a bad thing for people to self-identify with orthorexia and seek to obsess a little less. Which is exactly what former vegan blogger Jordan Younger did—revealing on her wildly-popular Instagram page that she had become so anxious about the food she ate it was making her sick, reports Broadly. Once she went public, she says, “a flood of people came forward saying they identified with me.” Karin Kratina, a 30-year veteran therapist focusing on eating disorders, says the rise in orthorexic patients is “serious” and that the problem is “we have moralized eating, weight, food, and exercise. Food has become presented—more and more—as the answer.” The issue is not without precedent. People can, for instance, exercise themselves right into the grave. But for whatever the reason, eating healthily in moderation is for some easier said than done. (Is healthy eating a privilege of the rich?)

The last question is the best question that could have been asked…….

The more people that drink the “pond scum” the more filets there will be for me…..and for that I thank you……

Food Nazi Speaks

A few years ago I started a food blog here on WordPress, The Food Nazi,  and found that trying to keep up with more than one blog was a daunting endeavor… I let it go….I do however from time to time invoke the memory of that blog and post something on food…….

First, for all you heat freaks……I know the hot sauce du jour is that crap from (wherever)….Sriracha……but that is for wimps and posers……you really want heat then sack up and try some Harissa…. you will not be disappointed.

These days there seems to be a diet of some sort for every type of eater….no matter if you are a meat eater or vegan or vegetarian or…well whatever you think is the best food to consume…..but for many years there has been one diet that constantly improves a person health both physical and mental……

Hoping to avoid brain shrinkage, cognitive impairment, and dementia? Gobble up lots of fish, veggies, and nuts. A new study shows those who follow the increasingly well-regarded Mediterranean diet have less brain atrophy than those who don’t. Researchers scanned the brains of 674 Manhattan residents over 80 who showed no signs of dementia, and analyzed their diets based on a questionnaire, reports the Guardian. The patients who kept to a Mediterranean diet had a brain volume that was 13.11 milliliters larger than others, their gray matter volume was 5 milliliters larger, and their white brain matter was 6.41 milliliters larger. Since people’s brains shrink with age, researchers say the difference in brain volume is equal to about five years of aging. This doesn’t mean the Mediterranean diet slows brain aging, but it does show an association.

And with greater brain volume comes more brain cells. “The more brain cells you have available, the more likely you are to be protected against illnesses of the brain related to aging, like Alzheimer’s,” a doctor tells CBS News, adding omega-3 fatty acids found in fish may benefit nerve cells, while B vitamins in fruits and veggies may prevent the buildup of plaque in the brain. “These results are exciting, as they raise the possibility that people may potentially prevent brain shrinking and the effects of aging on the brain simply by following a healthy diet,” lead author Yian Gu says. One aspect of the diet stood out, though. “Eating at least three to five ounces of fish weekly or eating no more than 3.5 ounces of meat daily may provide considerable protection against loss of brain cells equal to about three to four years of aging,” Gu adds. (The diet might also add years to your life.)

Then there are foods that we are addicted to for some reason……like chocolate or burgers or ……..for me it is CHEESE!

It matters not what type….they all have their good qualities and some even have a bad one or maybe two……but for me cheese is very addicting……I wonder why?

Pizza is the most problematic food out there, as far as addictive-like qualities go. So report students who completed the Yale Food Addiction Scale as part of a study by researchers at the University of Michigan. Those researchers published their findings in PLoS ONE earlier this year, and wrote that “though evidence of ‘food addiction’ continues to grow, no previous studies have yet examined which foods or food attributes are likely implicated in addictive-like eating.” So they sought to create a sort of “addictive profile,” and ultimately determined that processed foods that are higher in fat and refined carbohydrates, which have a rapid rate of absorption as indicated by glycemic load, tend to be hardest for we mere mortals to resist. “Processing was a large, positive predictor for whether a food was associated with problematic, addictive-like eating behaviors.”

The common-sense upshot: salmon and cucumbers aren’t problematic; ice cream and chips are. And with pizza atop our gotta-have-it list, Mic this week looks at what may set cheese apart. Cheese contains the protein casein, which releases opiates called casomorphins as the cheese is digested. “[Casomorphins] really play with the dopamine receptors and trigger that addictive element,” registered dietitian Cameron Wells, who was not part of the study, tells Mic. And while it’s present in all dairy products, it’s far more condensed in cheese because it takes 10 pounds of milk to make about a pound of cheese. When it comes to cheese, we’re certainly eating more of it: Americans tripled their cheese consumption between 1970 and 2010, from about 8 pounds per year to 23 pounds, reports the Center for Science in the Public Interest

I’m addicted and I do not care!  I could eat a bowling ball if it has cheese on it…..

My perfect lunch is cheese, fruit, nuts and a nice wine…..

Do you have an addictive food?

Would You Like a Hot Beverage?

So enters the weekend….that magical time when an analytic mind relaxes and enjoys life…….and as usual I will find those unusual topics on which to post…..

I exist on caffeine……coffee keeps the mind going and working at an incredible rate…..I have seen all the studies that say it is bad for a person….also the ones that say it is good and cannot hurt……and now there is a new study……

It’s no news flash that consuming caffeine close to bedtime can interfere with sleep. But scientists at the University of Colorado Boulder report in the journal Science Translational Medicine that caffeine has another physiological impact on sleep by delaying the body’s natural surge in the production of the sleep hormone melatonin, which in turn pushes back the body’s circadian clock. “To our surprise, no one had really tested this question,” one of the researchers tells NPR. “What we’re seeing here now is another way that caffeine impacts our physiology that we didn’t know about before in humans.”

The problem in this case is that the circadian clock is “present in cells throughout our entire body,” says the researcher. “It’s in your fat cells; it’s in your muscle cells.” Messing with it appears to play a role in a wide range of health problems, from obesity to cancer. Many studies have recently suggested that bright light at night, especially the blue light emanating from our screens, impedes melatonin production. Caffeine’s effect is about half what scientists found when exposing volunteers to bright light alone; volunteers who drank a double espresso three hours before bedtime experienced a 40-minute delay of the melatonin surge. Now the researchers plan to study whether caffeine consumption five or six hours before bedtime produces a similar effect.

Sleep?  There is plenty of time for sleep when I crap out!

Next the fad….green tea.  You have seen or heard the claims that green tea can do everything from weight loss to sexual prowess……

I bet there is one that you have not heard…….

A 16-year-old girl in England decided she was going to lose weight by drinking green tea, so she ordered two boxes online, the Telegraph reports. Most of the ingredients were written in Chinese, but the girl spent the next three months drinking three cups a day. According to ABC News, she had lost only a few pounds when she started suffering from nausea and joint and abdominal pains. She would eventually develop jaundice. “I was very scared when I was admitted to hospital and had lots of tests,” the girl says in a report published Wednesday in the British Medical Journal Case Reports. “I didn’t fully understand what was going on at the time.” The initial suspicion was a urinary tract infection, but it turns out she had acute hepatitis.

Doctors gave the girl intravenous fluids and medication—and made her stop drinking the tea—and she recovered quickly, ABC reports. According to the Telegraph, green tea has been rumored to be help everything from depression to breast cancer to dementia, thanks to its antioxidants. The report’s authors even “acknowledge that green tea is predominantly a very safe and healthy drink.” And while they didn’t test the girl’s tea, they believe chemical additives or pesticides were likely the cause of her hepatitis. One expert tells ABC that consumers need to be careful when buying herbal supplements or tea over the Internet. It’s a lesson one 16-year-old girl learned the hard way. “I will never buy any online tea again,” she says in the report

Personally I think green tea is an overrated consumer item….and now I know for damn sure I will not bother with it……

Water! The Biggest Story Of The Week

I will join the parade and post on NASA’s big story…..WATER has been found on Mars…..but as important as that was….it is NOT the big story!

Bear with me for a few moments.

NASA made its much-hyped big announcement today, and what it comes down to is that scientists have found the strongest evidence yet that there’s liquid water on the Red Planet, the Washington Post reports. Last April, using data from the Curiosity rover, researchers noted that perchlorates were present on the planet. Those are a type of salt, and they could make the boiling point of water on Mars—which is extremely low thanks to low pressure on the planet—much higher, which would mean that liquid water containing perchlorates could form during certain parts of the year. It’s been theorized that such water could be responsible for forming the geographic features known as recurring slope lineae (RSL) that have often been seen on Mars. Researchers have been looking at RSL features and found lots of perchlorates that appear to have been getting hydrated.

“We’re going to places where we thought we were seeing the presence of water and finding chemical evidence of perchlorates,” says the lead researcher. And one of the April researchers, who wasn’t involved in this latest study, tells the Post, “[The] flow of liquid salty water is no longer just a possibility; it does actually occur. The results [show] that liquid does indeed flow on Mars today.” But more research is necessary to actually confirm liquid water exists on the planet; the lead researcher says he hopes a rover can someday look closely at the RSL features. If liquid water does exist on Mars, it’s good news for astronauts who might one day travel there. “If we ever go there, we could probably utilize this. We wouldn’t have to bring tons of water,” says the lead researcher. “This stuff seems like science fiction, but in 100 years or so it could be fact.” It could also “boost the notion of life on Mars,” the AP notes.

The water story is a big deal….but SORRY….it is not the big story!

Rush Limbaugh is the bigger story……..

Strong evidence of water on Mars is either an amazing discovery or a leftist plot, depending on whether you’re talking to NASA scientists or Rush Limbaugh. On his radio show yesterday, the latter said that while he’s a “big time” science guy, he’s not buying the latest announcement because “NASA has been corrupted by the current regime” and he believes the discovery “is somehow going to find its way into a technique to advance the leftist agenda,” Politico reports.

Limbaugh said that since NASA has been “making up” temperature data for years, “lying and making up false charts and so forth,” he suspects it’s making up the Mars news as well, probably for “something to do with global warming.” “Maybe there was once an advanced civilization. If they say they found flowing water, next they’re going to find a graveyard,” he said, per Media Matters.

That my friends is the big story!

You have got to love the lack of a mental process from people like Rush……let’s not leave out the people that listen to him for news…..

When mental midgets attack!

Mister, Can You Spare A Butt?

Sunday my last day of no world affairs that can really make me cranky…..

For centuries man has searched high and low for a way to extend his/her life span……I even heard of one Chinese dude who drank pure mercury because it was thought it would make him immortal….I would put that one in the category as a bit extreme……

There is a new study (there is always a study) about a possible link to long life and a habit that some of us cannot seem to break…..

If you smoke for most of your life and still live to a ripe, old age, you might have more than luck on your side. Though smokers can generally expect to live 10 years less than non-smokers, this is by no means a hard and fast rule. Jeanne Calment, for example, smoked every day from the age of 21, yet was the oldest person in the world when she died at age 122 in 1997, reports the Washington Post. To understand such cases, scientists at UCLA carried out a study on long-lived smokers, comparing 90 smokers who lived past 80 with 730 who died before 70. They identified genetic markers that allows some to endure damage from stressors such as cigarette smoke better than the rest of us. In fact, the markers “seem to promote longevity,” study author Morgan Levine says in a release.

“Many of these markers are in pathways that were discovered to be important for aging and lifespan in animal models,” says Levine, noting the genes “may facilitate lifespan extension by increasing cellular maintenance and repair.” When researchers compared those with the gene variants to 6,447 non-smokers, they found the former group was 22% more likely to survive into their 90s, and three times more likely to reach 100, reports UPI. They also had a lesser risk of cancer. Genetic tests might someday allow people to easily learn whether they are among this “biologically distinct” group. Just don’t bet on good news: Levine notes it’s “extremely small,” and “even among those who are genetically predisposed to longevity, smoking cessation is likely still one of the best things they can do for their health.” (Want to live longer? You might try chili peppers.)

I am almost 70 now…maybe there is hope for me yet…..LOL


Your Ancestor Found

It is Sunday and I would like for Summer to just eat crap and finally die!  We have had 100+ temps and NO rain in 2 months……it is not only hot but it sucks too!

For about 200 years people have been combing the global looking for that missing link between man and ape…..they have found early man in Germany, France, Indonesia, Ethiopia ans South Africa….going back some back 100 of thousands of years…..and a new great grandfather to the 100 power may have been located…..

Scientists say it’s a find “unlike anything that we have seen.” Deep within a South African cave, experts claim to have uncovered the remains of a previously unknown human ancestor that stood about 5 feet tall, weighed 100 pounds, used tools, and may have buried its dead—an activity previously thought to be exclusive to modern humans, NBC News reports. Homo naledi, which had a brain the size of an orange, “looks like one of the most primitive members of our genus, but it also has some surprisingly human-like features—enough to warrant placing it in the genus Homo,” an anthropologist says. Researchers found 15 individuals of the species—including infants, children, adults, and seniors—after some rather slender scientists squeezed through a 7- or 8-inch-wide opening in the Rising Star cave near Johannesburg and descended 40 feet to a chamber below, report the Guardian and National Geographic.

Expert Lee Berger—who describes the species as “long-legged,” “pinheaded,” and “gangly”—says anthropologists explored various scenarios to explain why the remains were in such an isolated place, “including mass death, an unknown carnivore, water transport from another location, or accidental death in a death trap, among others.” But “we have, after eliminating all of the probable, come to the conclusion that Homo naledi was utilizing this chamber in a ritualized fashion to deliberately dispose of its dead,” Berger says. Others scientists are skeptical of that conclusion, and of the news that a new species has been found, arguing Homo naledi may only be a primitive Homo erectus, discovered in the 1800s. Dating the bones—which has been delayed because it will likely destroy the fossils—should eventually show where the species falls on the fossil record, and its relation to Homo erectus.

May not be the missing link…..but it is definitely not Bigfoot!  Although I am sure that some weirdo will say it is some sort of alien or worse……a half breed.

Maybe this discovery will help explain the some of the policies that the GOP embraces….ya think?