Lab Cat

23 Nov 2006

Food Fables: Thanksgiving Edition

Filed under: Food, Links — Cat @ 12:00 pm

No more hunger in the US? Just change the name.

Megnut reports that Hellman’s have changed their formula. My immediate reaction was “how?”. Following the links doesn’t help. Checking out Hellman’s doesn’t help either.

Confused about Calories? You are not alone. I do have a minor quibble with this:

Hargrove notes that one common misunderstanding about the Calorie is why it is spelled with an uppercase “C” rather than a lowercase “c.” Owing to the obscure origins of the measure, there was confusion about whether or not a calorie was defined as the amount of heat required to raise one kilogram of water one degree Celsius or one gram of water one degree Celsius. As the Calorie became popular in nutrition, it became more practical to measure the amount of kilograms. To denote this, a capital “C” refers to a kilogram calorie, while a lowercase “c” refers to a gram calorie.

As a nutrition major I learnt that Calorie = kilocalorie. There had never been any confusion, in my mind.

This one had escaped my attention. Possibly because it is in Canada and the west coast at that:

Boil Water Advisory for Greater Vancouver Area – Update

Residents of Vancouver, the City and District of North Vancouver, West Vancouver (unless served by Eagle Lake or Montizambert) and Burnaby are advised to still use boiled or bottled water for drinking, brushing teeth and washing fruits and vegetables. Tap water is safe for dishwashing and bathing.

It turns out that heavy rains contaminated the water supply as they caused landslides. Further rain this weekend means that the silt still hasn’t settled out.

Sort of food related – certainly is related to dietary supplement use – Orac has been doing a series on the introduction of alternative medicine into the medical school curriculum. His latest rant is against Georgetown University Medical School which has introduced the teaching alternative medicine into it curriculum making learning about it mandatory:

… Georgetown’s program is distinct from CAM initiatives in other medical schools in two ways: The school is integrating CAM education into existing course work across all four years of each student’s medical education, and the initiative includes a mind-body class to help students use techniques to manage their own health and improve self-care.

Orac responds:

My retort would be that it’s not necessary to integrate this woo deeply into the curriculum in order to accomplish this. For the vast majority of CAM therapies, a brief overview would be all that is needed. It is not necessary to teach “acupuncture points” in regular anatomy class, particularly when there is no evidence that these points mean anything on a strictly anatomic and physiological basis.

Teaching unproven CAM modalities so extensively in the core medical school curriculum rather than as electives is neither scientifically nor educationally appropriate, as it puts the imprimatur of scientific medicine as represented by medical schools on therapies that are anything but scientific.

One of the commenters gave this link, which is a list of alternative medicine treatments and why they are wrong.

Starbucks prevents the Ethiopian government from trademarking some of its coffee varieties.

A couple of posts on Thanksgiving dinner and why we fall asleep after it. First up Dr Charles, followed by Bora. Neither post explains why the nonvegetarians fall asleep while I stay awake.

Finally Megnut had a Thanksgiving spectacular all of last week.

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