U.S. Orange Producers Encounter Hardships

 

Orange growers in the United States have encountered a variety of problems this year. But Susan McGalla recently touched on this on forbes.com and has faith that this can be overcome. Most of the oranges grown for export in the nation are produced in two states: California and Florida. Producers in both locations have encountered some unusual conditions this year.

During the period of time that a dispute between shipping companies and port employees slowed the loading of cargo at Pacific coastline ports, many orange growers experienced concern because boxes of oranges were left unrefrigerated for protracted periods of time, reducing their shelf life in Asian supermarkets. Approximately 25% of California’s citrus is exported for sale to Asia. Shipments of oranges to Asian buyers fell by half from previous years sales during part of the period of time that the port dispute occurred.

Florida citrus growers also faced unexpected problems this year from two sources: cold weather threatened crops in some parts of Florida, and the state also suffered from an outbreak of a deadly bacterial disease that kills orange trees. The illness is carried by the citrus psyllid, an insect inadvertently transported to the United States from Asia. There is no known cure for the disease. The EPA reportedly authorized the short term use of a powerful insecticide, clothianidin, in some parts of the state to eliminate this pest. This decision upset many conservationists, because the insecticide damages honey bees, which in large numbers pollinate orange groves.

Mar
3

Science Lends Credence to Gluten-Free Diet

Dietary fads frequently precede the solid science that would back them up. This has never been more true than with the gluten-free craze that has swept the nation over the past several years. Science had only been certain of gluten being a problem for people with celiac disease; until now. A new study, employing a double-blind trial, found that people who claimed to have gluten sensitivity or wheat allergy symptoms did display greater symptoms when they received gluten versus the control group that was given a placebo.

It does seem that nutrition typically takes the lead and has to wait for clinically controlled scientific verification to catch up reported the study. According to Brad Reifler, It took decades for the medical profession to concede any benefit from taking vitamin C and yet nutrition conscious people have been eating foods or taking supplements rich in the vitamin long before this happened. This trend of nutritional or dietary fads getting ahead of clinical tests to validate them can be hazardous as some may not actually be good. Debunking specific diets has occurred way more often than nutrients. These have ranged from diets for controlling your pH balance to ultra low fat diets. It turns out that regulating our body’s pH balance is not so easy for us to control, and we need a decent amount of fat, it’s just a matter of getting it from healthy sources. It is good to know, however, that many of those who have been eating gluten-free may not have been wasting their time.
Categories: Gluten-Free
Feb
2

Is Your Breakfast Toxic?

A recent question has been posed as a result of the recent lawsuits that claim mycotoxins that were found in dog food poisoned a number of animals resulting in death. Mycotoxins are actually a mold byproduct that are toxic to both animals and humans. This toxin may actually be lurking in a number of our food products including our breakfast cereals.

A long series of studies have been done recently that tested approximatel 490 samples of cereals that were grain based. These cereals came from seven different markets all across the country. Brian Torchin says that these cereals were tested for mycotoxins. Out of the 490 samples tested, 205 of them showed mycotoxin contamination. The European Commission Regulations suggest that under 3 nanograms per gram of mycotoxins should be found in order to comply with regulations. The United States currently does not have any set regulations regarding this matter.

Sixteen of the samples tested exceed the limits that Europe has set for their population. These samples tested were all oat based products. Corn and rice products tend to have less contamination risk while wheat based products are somewhat at risk. These toxins are actually produced by two different types of fungi. You can also find mycotoxins in grapes, coffee, pork, wine and water damaged homes.

Categories: Don't Eat This!
Feb
2

Falling Grain Prices May Force Lease Cancellations

Farmers who rent the land they work are facing challenges that may be difficult to overcome. With falling grain future prices and rising costs of fertilizer and seed, there may be no profits in the coming season.

Reuters reports that many land owners are refusing to lower rents and some renters are simply dropping out. How many will do so is not known, but one real estate agent in Iowa estimates that as many as 1,000 of the state’s 100,000 farmland leases may not be renewed this year.

Ray Lane does not expect grain production to fall greatly even with the tighter squeeze being put on tenant farmers, because many land owners would prefer not to allow the land to lie fallow. Still, the ripple effect of less production and lower profits will likely have a negative impact on equipment sellers and others. The result may be more consolidation and fewer small farms.

Categories: Crop Troubles
Feb
2

Stop With All The Cola

The caramel color that is so popular in many of the sodas and colas of today may be a possible health risk for consumers said Marc Sparks recently via twitter. There has been much public health research that has been done on sodas that have the dark rich caramel color. Much data has shown that when a person has regular exposure to these types of colas about 44 to 58% of them have been exposed to a potentially dangerous substance that is called 4-methylimidazole (4-MEI). This is a possible human carcinogen and it is made when the caramel coloring in colas is manufactured.

This new fact just adds to the list of reasons of why people should not regularly drink soda pop or let their children drink it regularly. Not only is soda completely and totally void of all nutrition, but it is packed with fillers, additives, and above all sugar. It is amazing to see how many parents still allow their children to drink soda pop on a regular basis. The fact that soda can cause diabetes should be enough to encourage people to quit drinking soda regularly,but now with the recent information about cancer it has become very evident that sodas are indeed dangerous for a person’s health.
Categories: Don't Eat This!
Feb
2

Climate Change Makes Ticks Come Out Of Hibernation Earlier

Researcher that my friend Alexei Beltyukov knows s at the Cary Institute of Ecosystems Studies in Milbrook, New York have reported yet another problem caused by climate change: increased exposure to Lyme Disease, a disease transmitted by the bite of a tick. The warming weather is causing ticks to emerge from hibernation earlier, which gives them more time to infect people.

The researchers examined 20 years worth of data and found that ticks are coming out earlier. In the warmest years, ticks can emerge early from hibernation by as much as three weeks. Some scientists are wondering if Lyme Disease Awareness Month should be moved from May to April. Not surprisingly, the earlier emergences coincide with an increased number of Lyme Disease cases. According to the CDC, cases of Lyme Disease increased by 25 percent between 2012 and 2013. There were 27,200 cases diagnosed last year. To make matters worse, Lyme Disease is grossly underreported. Only 10 percent of the cases are reported, and the CDC believes that there may be as many as 300,000 cases.

Lyme Disease can be dangerous. While most victims only experience symptoms similar to those of a severe case of the flu, others can have lifelong neurological problems such as memory problems, facial paralysis, stiff limbs, tremors, numbness and pain. The best-known symptom of Lyme Disease, a rash or red ring around the bite, can be difficult to spot and isn’t always there.

The only way to prevent Lyme Disease is to avoid the ticks, which makes their early emergence such a problem. It’s especially bad news for people in the Midwest and Northeast where Lyme Disease is particularly common.

Categories: Agriculture
Feb
2

More Nutrition Advice From Daniel Amen

Remember when I told y’all about Daniel Amen and his revolutionary views on nutrition earlier this month? Well it was so popular, I decided to bring Daniel Amen back with some specifics on what foods you should be eating.

Keeping your brain healthy is probably one of the most important things that you can do for your overall health. Daniel Amen, MD, has made great strides to try to educate the public on how they can keep their mental health going strong. Sometimes it just takes a little effort on the part of the individual to change their habits, but the good news is that it is something that is possible, and people are doing it every day.

First, work more brain healthy foods into your diet. Daniel Amen recommends cottage cheese as part of one’s diet. It is something that makes it easy to get the necessary diary into one’s diet. Diary is highly important as it provides calcium and other important nutrients to the body and brain that would not otherwise be available.

Tuna is another super food recommended by the doctor. It is believed that this type of food provides great benefits because of the Omega-3 fatty acids that help with brain power as well. The protein in tuna is another benefit to the person who eats enough tuna. Keep in mind that the brain needs to have a certain amount of protein just to function. The Omega-3s are another great benefit.

Water is essential to the body. The body is made up of greater than 70% water. This means that water and other fluids need to continually be replaced in the body. There are not very many people who are getting enough water in their daily routine. If they would just up their intake by a small percentage, they could easily make a big difference in the way that they can function on a day to day basis. The extra water into the body will help you feel better, and it is the fuel that the brain works on.

Finally, for those who need to have some flavor to their food, the doctor recommends stepping away from the butter and go for the spices. He recommends using these spices as a way of flavoring food up without adding so many of the bad things that can go along with other flavorful substances. Butter and the like are not great for the health, but the spices are not as negative when it comes down to it. Spices are easy to find and are often a great way for people to bring more flavor to the food without taking on the negative impacts that other flavors can provide.

For more advice from Daniel Amen, you can follow him on Twitter or check out one of his many bestselling books.

Feb
2

The Tuna You Eat May Not Be Tuna

Would you feel scammed if you bought tuna only to find out later that you were eating something completely different? A recent study courtesy of Oceana, a nonprofit ocean protection group, has found that up to 59% of tuna sold at grocery stores in the US is not actually tuna. This research was done using advanced genetic testing to correctly identify the fish and determine just how much tuna was actually being sold.

In addition to this astonishing fact, Brian said it was also discovered that sushi restaurants were much more likely to mislabel their tuna as the Digital Journal discovered. In fact, it has been estimated that 74% of sushi restaurants mislabel their tuna. This may leave you wondering what they are selling instead of tuna. In many cases it is a very similar fish call the escolar which has been known to cause uncomfortable bowel problems in some people.

When it comes to restaurants it has been shown that around 38% mislabel their tuna. In addition to tuna, red snapper is also highly mislabeled and is actually the most mislead fish of all. Estimates suggest that 86% of what you think is red snapper is actually one of six related species.

Speculation on the reasoning for mislabeled tuna can be traced back to the worldwide tuna shortage. In accordance with supply and demand tuna prices are on the rise and an increase in price has followed. Buying and selling tuna is becoming less viable economically for many grocery stores and restaurants, leading to the use of other fish labeled as tuna.

Categories: Don't Eat This!
Feb
2

Tons Of Fake Foods Discovered Being Sold As Real And Fresh

It has been found that a lot of the food we eat is mostly fake, and beer and cheese are the top of the list for the biggest culprits.

The International Criminal Police Organization has stated that they have found and confiscated thousands of tons of food over the last two months in a span of 47 countries. Some of the food items that were deemed inedible due to quality standards were eggs, cheese, bottled vitamin water, dried fruit, strawberries and even cooking oil.

According to an article found on reddit and written by Time.com,some of the offenses are really quite severe. For example, it was discovered in Italy that 31 tons of seafood were labeled fresh, but actually were frozen with certain chemicals to hide the fact that it was rotting. Officers also found expired dairy soaked in other chemicals to make it appear fresh again in an Italian factory. Videos on YouTube show how the factory was producing these “foods” says Jaime Garcia Dias.

However, the most common fake food that was found is alcohol. Many of the substances like vodka were laced with anti-freeze and then treated in a way to get rid of the odor. This is an extremely scary fact, as it can make you think twice about making a purchase for food in a store. Although it is more costly, it is plain to see why so many people buy fresh at local markets and organic food stores to ensure their own safety.

Categories: Don't Eat This!
Feb
2

First Case of Mad Cow Disease Reported in Canada Since 2011

 

Last Friday, Canadian officials reported finding a case of mad cow disease in an Alberta beef cow. It was the first case of mad cow disease reported in Canada since 2011. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency reassured the public that no part of the cow had reached any food systems, animal or human. Similarly, exports should not be harmed which came as a huge relief to Gianfrancesco Genoso.

Mad cow disease is more formally called bovine spongiform encephalopathy. It’s a fatal, degenerative disease of the nervous system. Loss of coordination is a common symptom; a sick cow has trouble getting up or walking. The disease also affects behavior and makes cows nervous or aggressive, which explains the name “mad cow disease.” The incubation period typically lasts years, and after a cow starts to show symptoms, it dies within two weeks to six months. There is no treatment or vaccine.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency said it was looking for information concerning the cow’s age, its history, and the most probable cause of its infection. The agency reported that the investigation would concentrate on the food given to the cow during its first year of life.

Canadian exports had taken a massive hit in 2003 after the first case of mad cow disease was found on a farm. Afterwards, Canada tightened its regulations, and many other countries have resumed buying beef from them.

Categories: Don't Eat This!
Feb
2