Monday, June 15, 2009

Food Bites Edition 3 / April 2009

Note from Editor:
I’m sure this month will be a very stressful and busy month for everyone as the finals are coming closer. However, I do hope that everyone will not forget to have regular meals everyday, and to exercise regularly to release the stress.

In this issue of Food Bites, there is an article on “Food Safety Tips”. Here, we learn to cook our food till a certain temperature to ensure that the food are safe to be eaten. Next up, we have news from The Institute of the Food Technologists, and an article on the reasons why do we have to consume seafood.

A very exciting event coming up this month is the Borneo Mushroom trip on the 11th and 12th April. To those who will be going for the trip, do not be late as the bus will not wait for you!

Last but not least, I would like to take the opportunity to bid farewell to everyone as this will be the last issue for this semester. Don’t forget to look out for Food Bites next semester and all the best to everyone in your finals!


Heat kills germs and exterminates bacteria in food. Cook your meat, poultry, eggs, and seafood until they reach these internal temperatures. Use a good, clean, instant-read thermometer and place its tip in the thickest part of the food. (Don’t forget to wash it each time before you insert it.)

Sources: USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service and FDA Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition

Why Getting Into Seafood?

When the sea breeze is blowing gently on your face, you would probably think of the underwater creatures and then having a seafood buffet would be best while enjoying the gorgeous view on the beach. Feel like eating it already? It’s great if you have the thought of eating seafood than those who choose to stay away from it. Adding a little bit of seafood in your diet just by saying ‘yes’, and you will find out how the wonders of seafood would help you to be back on track to your healthy life.

If you do not like seafood you should start to pick up the habit of eating it. You may wonder why is it beneficial to do so, it’ll be elucidated right off. Have you ever heard of omega-3-fatty acid (O3FA)? This term may sound alien to some of you. It is actually one of the subclasses of fatty acid. One should increase intake of this fatty acid than increasing saturated fats and trans fats which will increase the ‘bad’ cholesterol within the body. The advantages of increasing intake of O3FA are listed below:

· Positive effect on heart rhythm

· Reduce risk of heart disease

· May reduce incidence of most common type of stroke

· May have a role in macular degeneration ( common form of blindness)

· Some other positive influences on: kidney disease, asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, etc.

So what has it to do with seafood? This O3FA is found to be abundant in seafood especially fish, which is one of the primary sources. Some examples include salmon, sardine, tuna and even shellfish. So waste no time and act fast to change your way of eating simply by giving a little space for seafood on your plate. Here are a few handy tips for you to gradually alter your diet to having a twice-weekly seafood diet:

· Sardine or tuna on crackers to chew on in front of the box as snacks.

· Tuna salad sandwich for a quick lunch as it’ll be ready in no time.

· Starts to have fish or other types of shellfish in your meal per week and slowly increasing to two per week.

You will see how the beauty of seafood will be revealed to you as in aiding you to reap for a healthier life!


News From The Institute of the Food Technologists
Gene linked with desire for fattening foods

A study published in The New England Journal of Medicine led by Dr. Colin Palmer at the Univ. of Dundee, Scotland, suggests that the fat mass and obesity-associated (FTO) gene could be associated with a desire for high-calorie foods. The scientists genotyped 2,726 Scottish children, age 4–10, for the FTO variant rs9939609. In addition, their height and weight measurements were taken. Nearly two-thirds of the children had at least one copy of the gene variant.

After confirming the obesity link in the larger group, the researchers examined 97 of the children. They took a number of measurements, including body fat and metabolic rate. The researchers wanted to figure out if the FTO gene also had to do with the eating behavior or whether it involved how the body burns calories. The children were given three meals at school to evaluate their eating behavior. The researchers found that children with the gene variation showed no difference in metabolic rates, levels of physical activity, or the amount of food eaten.

However, they found that the children with the gene variant were eating higher-calorie foods, and consuming, on average, 100 more calories than the children without the gene. The researchers concluded that the presence of the FTO variant “may have a role in the control of food intake and food choice, suggesting a link to a hyperphagic phenotype or a preference for energy-dense foods.”


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