Friday, 31 January 2014

Wednesday, 22 January 2014

Butter Wars

It looks like butter has won the war with margarine (H/T Melissa McEwan):
  • “For the last 20 years or so, we have been too obsessed, overly obsessed on the fact that butter was opposed to margarine,” Antoine Bernard de Saint-Affrique, the head of Unilever’s Food division, told investors last month. “I’m happy to say that this time is over and we have changed. And we have changed in a very significant way.”
My advice remains the same; "avoid any food that can change its nutritional stripes to reflect the dietary wisdom of the day."

Monday, 20 January 2014

The Minnesota Starvation Experiment

The BBC magazine carried an article and podcast on this famous experiment:

  • During World War Two, conscientious objectors in the US and the UK were asked to volunteer for medical research. In one project in the US, young men were starved for six months to help experts decide how to treat victims of mass starvation in Europe.
    In 1944, 26-year-old Marshall Sutton was a young idealist who wanted to change the world for the better. As a conscientious objector and Quaker, he refused to fight in the war but he still craved the chance to help his country.
    "I wanted to identify with the suffering in the world at that time," he says. "I wanted to do something for society. I wanted to put myself in a little danger."

The podcast is available here.

Saturday, 18 January 2014

David Harris

The false dichotomy implicit in most discussions on HG and the ills of settled agriculture are neatly illustrated in the opening paragraphs of David Harris's obituary:
  • While travelling in a dugout canoe to a particularly remote part of the upper Orinoco, he was able to observe and record the sophisticated forest management practised by the Waika Indians.
    Root crops and fruit trees were inter-planted within clearings that merged with the forest ecosystem, in a way of life that integrated cropping, fishing and hunting with the use of the forest resources. That experience led David to question the conventional idea of a simple split between hunter-gatherers and farmers, and to challenge it in a series of publications.

Saturday, 11 January 2014

Processed Food: Behind the Advert

Yoni Freedhoff does some sterling work here!

You Are Never Alone

The Gut Bacteria Living Inside You (INFOGRAPHIC)

Thursday, 9 January 2014

Fructose: The Bittersweet Sugar

A very interesting discussion on fructose from BBC Radio 4's Inside Health:
  • If you believe the headlines fructose is "addictive as cocaine" , a "toxic additive" or a "metabolic danger". So how has a simple sugar in fruit got such a bad name and is there any evidence behind the accusations that it has caused the obesity epidemic? Meanwhile, a new health claim approved by the European Union promoting the benefits of fructose containing foods or drinks, comes into force in the New Year. So where does the truth lie? Dr Mark Porter talks to leading world experts to sift through the evidence.