Yet Another Saturday News

Once again it is the weekend and yes it comes at the end of every week and so I want to impart some news that could very well change your life (no really but what the Hell)….

A couple of items about people wanting to win the ‘lawsuit lotto’…..

According to the packaging, it takes just 3.5 minutes to prepare Velveeta Shells & Cheese. According to Amanda Ramirez, that’s not true when one accounts for the time it takes to remove the lid, add water, and stir in the cheese sauce (not to mention waiting for that sauce to thicken). Per NPR, the Florida woman has filed a class-action lawsuit against Kraft Heinz to the tune of $5 million on behalf of consumers in 10 states. According to the suit, the multinational food giant relies on “false and misleading representations” to charge a “premium price … higher than it would be sold for absent the misleading representations and omissions.”

In a statement to USA Today, Kraft said it is “aware of this frivolous lawsuit and will strongly defend against the allegations in the complaint.” But according to NPR, Ramirez’s lawyers contend that it’s important to hold corporations to account. “Deceptive advertising is deceptive advertising,” said one lawyer, adding that his firm also “also represents clients in what most would say are more compelling cases … but we don’t feel corporations should get a pass for any deceptive advertising.” Per the Daily Mail, Ramirez’s suit claims that she would not have purchased the Velveeta product if she had known the truth about its prep time.

NPR also notes the presence of Spencer Sheehan on Ramirez’s legal team. Sheehan specializes in suits over misleading advertising and packaging, and he files approximately three per week, a rate that has “almost single-handedly caused a historic spike in the number of class action lawsuits against food and beverage companies—up more than 1000% since 2008.” Many of his lawsuits are settled before they reach court. Sheehan was involved in another recent lawsuit accusing Kellogg’s of misleading advertising in its strawberry Pop-Tarts, which also contain apples and pears. That suit was dismissed by a federal judge on April 1, per Reuters.

Next is the one on cheese sticks…..

A food product labeled “TGI Fridays Mozzarella Sticks Snacks” definitely contains sticks that can be snacked on, but the “TGI Fridays” and “Mozzarella” parts of the name were the focus of a court hearing this week. Federal judge Robert Dow ruled that a class action suit filed by a woman who called the name misleading because the sticks contain no mozzarella cheese could proceed, USA Today reports. But he also granted TGI Fridays’ request to be removed from the lawsuit, saying the restaurant chain had only licensed its trademark to snack maker Inventure Foods, which wasn’t enough to make it liable for alleged false or misleading advertising.

n the lawsuit filed early last year, Illinois resident Amy Joseph said she bought the bagged snack on Amazon, where the ingredients were not listed, and she was surprised to find out from the fine print that they contained cheddar, not mozzarella. She argued that it was “misbranding.” Dow said it was plausible for Joseph to allege that a reasonable consumer would believe “a product labelled ‘Mozzarella Stick Snacks’ with an image of mozzarella sticks would bear some resemblance to mozzarella sticks, which presumably contain some mozzarella cheese,” per Reuters. Inventure argued that no reasonable consumer would believe a “shelf-stable, crunchy snack product” would contain actual mozzarella.

Inventure’s lawyers also questioned Joseph’s motives for buying the product, calling her a “serial class action plaintiff” who has filed at least eight other suits over the last decade. Joseph’s lawyer, Thomas Zimmerman Jr., said they are “pleased with the ruling” and “intend to proceed against Inventure Foods on behalf of the nationwide class of purchasers of TGI Fridays mozzarella sticks.” The court directed attorneys to hold a “preliminary settlement discussion” on Dec. 5, per Reuters.

As we get older we seem to lose some of our mind power….and can it be slowed?

You may have more control than you think over your brain health as you age, specifically when it comes to how your memory functions, if results from a new study are any indication. Research published earlier this month in the journal Neurology has found that individuals who consume more flavonols—a type of plant-based flavonoid compound rich in antioxidants and found in fruits, vegetables, and other edibles—may stave off cognitive decline longer than those who don’t get as many of the phytochemicals in their diet, reports CNN. Scientists surveyed nearly 1,000 older participants between the ages of 60 and 100, with an average age of 81, each year for seven years on how often they chowed down on certain foods, per a release.

The yearly review also asked the study participants to complete cognitive and memory tasks such as recalling lists of words and placing numbers they’d been shown in the proper order. The subjects were divided into five groups based on the amount of flavonols in their diet, with the lowest group consuming about 5mg a day and the highest group taking in about 15mg daily, which is equivalent to about 1 cup of dark leafy greens. Researchers discovered that those who ingested the most flavonols saw their cognitive scores decline at a rate that was 0.4 units per decade slower than scores of people in the group that ingested the least amount of flavonols. The scientists also parsed results based on the ingestion of the four main types of flavonols: quercetin, kaempferol, myricetin, and isorhamnetin, found in a wide variety of fruits, vegetables, herbs, sauces, tea, and wine.

The greatest difference was found with individuals who ate larger quantities of food with kaempferol, found in abundance in onions, kale, beans, spinach, broccoli, and tea. “It’s exciting that our study shows making specific diet choices may lead to a slower rate of cognitive decline,” study author Thomas Holland, of Rush University Medical Center, says in a statement. Holland notes that one theory behind the results points to the flavonols’ antioxidant properties and their ability to reduce inflammation. More research is needed to see if the effects are long-lasting, and whether the flavonols alone are to be credited for the memory retention. Still, Holland notes, in the interim, “something as simple as eating more fruits and vegetables and drinking more tea is an easy way for people to take an active role in maintaining their brain health.”

More health news… you like walking?

Walking doesn’t require any special equipment or gym memberships, and best of all, it’s completely free. For most of us, walking is something we do automatically. It doesn’t require conscious effort, so many of us fail to remember the benefits of walking for health. But what happens if we stop walking on auto-pilot and start challenging our brains and bodies by walking backwards? Not only does this change of direction demand more of our attention, but it may also bring additional health benefits.

Physical activity doesn’t need to be complicated. Whether you’re regularly active or not, even a brisk ten-minute daily walk can deliver a host of health benefits and can count towards the World Health Organization’s recommended minimum of 150 minutes of aerobic activity a week.

Yet walking is more complicated than many of us realise. Remaining upright requires coordination between our visual, vestibular (sensations linked to movements such as twisting, spinning or moving fast) and proprioceptive (awareness of where our bodies are in space) systems. When we walk backwards, it takes longer for our brains to process the extra demands of coordinating these systems. However, this increased level of challenge brings with it increased health benefits.

One of the most well-studied benefits of walking backwards is improving stability and balance. Walking backwards can improve forward gait (how a person walks) and balance for healthy adults and those with knee osteoarthritis. Walking backwards causes us to take shorter, more frequent steps, leading to improved muscular endurance for the muscles of the lower legs while reducing the burden on our joints.

That taps me out.

Enjoy your weekend….Be Well….Be Safe….

“lego ergo scribo”