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10 Healthy, Natural Phytonutrients that are good for you (and may help you avoid caner)

The Food Revolution Network lists the ten phytochemicals you can get from foods that are good for you.  Apparently, there’s research that it helps prevent cancer, which you can read here.  But if you don’t want to read it and are just curious about some healthy food chemicals, here’s the list below:

  1. Epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG): a green tea extract
  2. Curcumin: the primary polyphenol in turmeric root
  3. Resveratrol: a phytochemical found in grapes, Japanese knotweed, and peanuts
  4. Lycopene: a red carotenoid found in watermelon, red grapefruit, and tomatoes
  5. Pomegranate extracts
  6. Luteolin: a flavinoid found in peppers and green vegetables
  7. Genistein: a phytochemical found in red clover, soy, and coffee
  8. Piperine: a phytochemical found in black pepper
  9. Beta-carotene: an orange carotenoid found in vegetables including carrots
  10. Sulforaphane: a sulfurous phytochemical found in broccoli, bok choy, cabbage, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, and similar vegetables.

In this case, being healthy will involve eating a lot of salad.  Not really different from what it was before, really.


What is it about America?

Here’s a question I’m sure anyone who’s got an advanced degree in this country has asked:

Why isn’t education appreciated in this country?

I mean it.  What is it about certain Americans that makes them not only satisfied with being ignorant, but proud of it?

It’s the twenty-first century, and yet we have the most anti-science Congress in history.  We have climate-change-deniers in charge of both the House and Senate science committees.  Republican senator Thom Tillis of North Carolina even said that restaurant employees shouldn’t be forced to wash their hands before preparing food!

As a science major with a Master’s degree, I don’t just think this is appalling.  To me, this is like a nightmare I can’t wake up from.  It’s as if a group of the most ignorant, superstitious bigots from the Middle Ages got transported, en masse, into the year 2015 and took over the country.

It’s also personal.  My education and accomplishments apparently don’t matter in this society.  I’ve gotten only two job offers, and both were for entry-level labor positions.  It’s clear: U.S. society doesn’t value intelligence, unless it’s used to help a corporation make more money or a politician dodge his or her responsibility.

I went into the field of science because I thought I would have plenty of opportunities to earn a living with a satisfying career, not to mention do some good in the world.

I was wrong.

I might just as well have gone into music performance for all the good my education has done me.  My ultimate fate would have been the same: twenty-seven, unemployed, and living with my parents.  Go ahead and laugh at me and say that I’m useless and worthless.

Society has already made that clear in no uncertain terms.

Foods Banned in Other Countries that are Still Allowed in the U.S.

If you still had any doubts that the current FDA cares only about profits and not your health, those doubts will soon be erased.  Here are 10 foods that are so potentially dangerous for humans that other countries have banned them…and yet they’re still sold in this country.

1. Farm-raised salmon, which is full of antibiotics, drugs, and chemicals, and may be infected with fish viruses.  Banned in Australia, New Zealand, and Russia.

2. Genetically-engineered papaya.  Banned in the European Union.

3. Ractopamine-tainted meat.  Ractopamine is a drug given to livestock to enhance muscles and reduce fat content in meat.  Unfortunately, not only is it linked to loss of reproductive function and increase in disability and death in dairy herds, but it also may cause behavioral changes, chromosome abnormalities, and and hyperactivity in humans.  Banned in 160 European countries (including Russia), mainland China, and Taiwan.

4. Brominated vegetable oil, which was originally patented by chemical companies as a flame retardant.  Now it’s used in citrus-flavored sodas and sports drinks!  It’s also linked to problems in the human body, from rashes and acne to major organ damage, birth defects, and even schizophrenia.  Banned in Japan and 18 European countries.

5. Processed foods with artificial food coloring and dyes.  These foods include macaroni and cheese, Jell-O, and kids’ cereals.  The additives have been linked to behavioral changes, birth defects, cancer, and allergy-like reactions in children.  Banned in Norway and Austria.

6. Arsenic-laced chicken.  Believe it or not, arsenic, the traditional poison of murder mysteries, is used to make drugs that cause growth in chickens, as well as making the meat appear pink and fresh.  I truly wish I was kidding, and I don’t think I need to go into the negative effects here.  Banned in the European Union.

7. Bread enriched with potassium bromate, which commercial baking companies claim makes dough more elastic.  Unfortunately, it’s also been linked to problems in the kidneys, the nervous system, and the thyroid, as well as cancer.  Banned in Canada, China, and the European Union.

8. Olestra/Olean.  This is a fat substitute used in fat-free snacks such as potato chips, and it may cause intestinal problems such as diarrhea and cramps.  Banned in the U.K. and Canada.

9. BHA and BHT, which are preservatives found in beer, breakfast cereal, butter spread, mixed nuts, dehydrated potatoes, and chewing gum.  BHA, known to cause cancer in rats, triggers allergic reactions and hyperactivity in humans.  BHT may result in organ system toxicity.  Banned in the European Union and Japan.

10. Dairy products full of rBGH.  This is a synthetic version of a natural hormone in cattle used to increase milk production.  Not only does it cause adverse health conditions in cattle and contaminate milk, but it’s been linked to cancer in humans.  Banned in Australia, New Zealand, Israel, the European Union, and Canada.

Are you disgusted and outraged?  I know I am.  See the link below for more details:

Eating Vegetables Makes You Happy?

According to a new study published in the British Journal of Health Psychology, eating more fruits and vegetables is associated with more curiosity, happiness, and creativity in daily life, possibly due to high levels of Vitamin C and of antioxidants that reduce inflammation in the body.  Granted, it’s possible that better moods caused higher consumption of vegetables and fruits among the test subjects instead of the other way around, but it’s an interesting study anyway.

See the link below for the abstract of this article:

Anti-Appetite Molecule?

Anti-Appetite Molecule?

You heard right.

Read the article at the link to learn how a diet high in fiber suppresses appetite and may suppress obesity.

What Fuels Salmonella’s Invasion Strategy?

What Fuels Salmonella’s Invasion Strategy?

Once you eat meat, eggs, or vegetables contaminated with Salmonella you get sick; it’s inevitable.  But how exactly does Salmonella make you sick?  What happens to the bacteria when they enter your body?  What is their plan of attack?

This short article traces the pathway of Salmonella infection.  Click on the link to learn about this pathway and what scientists are researching to prevent it.

Dirty Dozen and Clean Fifteen

Dirty Dozen and Clean Fifteen

If you’re worried about chemicals in your fruits and vegetables and want a guide to help you choose pesticide-free produce, this link is a handy place to start.  It lists the conventionally-grown fruits and vegetables that have the most or least pesticides in them.