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19/02/2020 01:07:54  

After a week on a high fat, high added sugar diet, volunteers scored worse on memory tests

Consuming a western diet for as little as one week can subtly impair brain function and encourage slim and otherwise healthy young people to overeat, scientists claim.

Researchers found that after seven days on a high fat, high added sugar diet, volunteers in their 20s scored worse on memory tests and found junk food more desirable immediately after they had finished a meal.

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18/02/2020 18:52:56  

Many of us have an overflowing kitchen cupboard of plastic containers to store our leftovers. But as awareness grows over the health and environmental pitfalls of plastic, some consumers may be wondering: Is it time to ditch that stash of old deli containers? From a report: Only 9% of all the plastic waste ever created has been recycled. From its contributions to global heating and pollution, to the chemicals and microplastics that migrate into our bodies, the food chain and the environment, the true cost of this cheap material is becoming more apparent. There are thousands of compounds found in plastic products across the food chain, and relatively little is known about most of them. But what we do know of some chemicals contained in plastic is concerning. Phthalates, for example, which are used to make plastic more flexible and are found in food packaging and plastic wrap, have been found by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in measurable levels across the US population (including in the body of Guardian journalist Emily Holden). They have been linked to reproductive dysfunction in animal studies and some researchers have suggested [PDF] links to decreased fertility, neurodevelopmental issues and asthma in humans. BPA, another chemical widely added to food plastics and can linings, has been subject to increasing regulations after studies linked the chemical to neonatal and infant brain and reproductive harm. But BPS and BPF, two common replacements used in products marketed as "BPA-free," may have similar effects to their predecessor: studies out of both the University of Texas and Washington State University found that even at a dose of one part per trillion, BPS could disrupt cell functioning. A 2019 study from New York University linked childhood obesity with BPS and BPF. There are many other chemicals added to plastic during production, and researchers concede that many gaps remain in our understanding of how they affect health and development. But research that is adding to concerns about the "miracle material" is growing.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

18/02/2020 11:53:00  
13/02/2020 00:57:30  

It’s cheap, attractive and convenient, and we eat it every day – it’s difficult not to. But is ultra-processed food making us ill and driving the global obesity crisis?

By Bee Wilson

Nearly three decades ago, when I was an overweight teenager, I sometimes ate six pieces of sliced white toast in a row, each one slathered in butter or jam. I remember the spongy texture of the bread as I took it from its plastic bag. No matter how much of this supermarket toast I ate, I hardly felt sated. It was like eating without really eating. Other days, I would buy a box of Crunchy Nut Cornflakes or a tube of Pringles: sour cream and onion flavour stackable snack chips, which were an exciting novelty at the time, having only arrived in the UK in 1991. Although the carton was big enough to feed a crowd, I could demolish most of it by myself in a sitting. Each chip, with its salty and powdery sour cream coating, sent me back for another one. I loved the way the chips – curved like roof tiles – would dissolve slightly on my tongue.

After one of these binges – because that is what they were – I would speak to myself with self-loathing. “What is wrong with you?” I would say to the tear-stained face in the mirror. I blamed myself for my lack of self-control. But now, all these years later, having mostly lost my taste for sliced bread, sugary cereals and snack chips, I feel I was asking myself the wrong question. It shouldn’t have been “What is wrong with you?” but “What is wrong with this food?”

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12/02/2020 17:48:19  

Unilever, which owns brands such as Twister and Cornetto, says it is responding to rising obesity rates.
11/02/2020 16:52:17  

Experts welcome example of nation once drinking more per head than any other

The world’s toughest controls over the promotion of sugary drinks, brought in by a nation beset by obesity, have cut purchases by nearly a quarter in two years, research has shown.

Instead of a sugar tax, which the UK and other countries have chosen to impose, Chile has banned sales in schools and adopted stark black and white labels aimed at warning and educating families about the health dangers of junk food and drinks for their children.

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02/02/2020 18:50:08  

Michael Bloomberg traded insults with Donald Trump on Sunday, calling the president “a pathological liar who lies about everything: his fake hair, his obesity and his spray-on tan”.

Related: 'My party is a cult': Republican Joe Walsh on his Iowa challenge to Trump

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25/01/2020 08:48:08  

Group calls for warnings to be displayed on items high in fat, salt and sugar to tackle obesity

A fledgling campaign group led by teenagers is calling for traffic light-style front of pack labelling to be made mandatory in the UK.

The Bite Back 2030 campaign said progress on improving child health was stalling and that the move would bring the UK in line with other countries. These include Israel, which this week announced new laws making warning labels compulsory on packaged products high in fat, salt and sugar. Elsewhere, Canada also plans to introduce mandatory warning labels, while Chile introduced them in 2016.

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22/01/2020 10:47:46  

When treating antibiotic-resistant infections, injecting patients with other people’s excrement can be highly effective. Could it be the answer to dementia, anorexia and obesity too?

The man and woman are wearing blue hospital gowns and clear face shields. Dr James Sones and Dr Indu Srinivasan are in a room in the Division of Digestive Diseases at the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson. They are about to create something that has spread through medicine like, well, a shitstorm.

Sones takes a brown gloopy material and spoons it into what looks like a regular kitchen blender. The camera zooms in to a label on it: faecal blender. The brown gloopy stuff is, depending on your profession and level of politeness, faecal matter, stool, excrement or poo. It has been donated by a generous volunteer and it is almost certainly going to transform the life of the person who is going to receive it.

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