Feeling depressed? Drink some coffee!

Coffee: The new antidepressant. Antioxidant 101. Produce your own larvae.

September 12, 2013 Video not working?


Does coffee really help with depression?  A new study by the Harvard School of Public Health states that drinking several cups of coffee daily appears to reduce the risk of suicide in men and women by about 50%! Researchers examined data from three large U.S studies; 43,599 men enrolled in the Health Professionals Follow-up Study (1988–2008), 73,820 women in the Nurses’ Health Study (1992–2008), and 91,005 women in the Nurses’ Health Study II (1993–2007). Caffeine, coffee, and decaffeinated coffee intake was assessed every four years by questionnaires. Results found that the risk of suicide for adults who drank two to four cups of caffeinated coffee per day was about half that of those who drank decaffeinated coffee or very little or no coffee. According to researchers, caffeine not only stimulates the central nervous system but may act as a mild antidepressant by boosting the production of neurotransmitters in the brain like serotonin, dopamine, and noradrenaline.  So, does this mean we should all be upping our caffeine intake now? Probably not, especially if you're already having a few cups of coffee a day anyway. The authors of the study are quoted as saying, “Overall, our results suggest that there is little further benefit for consumption above 2-3 cups/day or 400 mg of caffeine/day.”


We've all seen the advertisements about antioxidants; we know that foods full of blueberries, or tomatoes or nuts are rich in these 'healthy antioxidants', and we know that we should probably be eating them. BUT… how many of us really know what antioxidants are? And how many of us even know what their health benefits are?!  The nutritional products company MonaVie, released the results of a study conducted by Wakefield Research. The survey showed 92% of respondents could not accurately describe what an antioxidant is, and 91% could not recognize one or more foods rich in antioxidants, even though 75% say they actively try to eat such foods.  So, seems like it's time for a reminder. What is an antioxidant? An antioxidant is a vitamin, mineral, or other nutrient that can protect and repair cells in the body against damage caused by free radicals. Free radicals can occur for many reasons, including exposure to pollution, tobacco smoke, chemicals, or an unhealthy diet. Different antioxidants are found in different foods, for example, beta carotene and other carotenoids are found in anything from sweet potato to tomatoes to pink grapefruit.  Vitamin C is found in many berries, oranges, broccoli, peppers. Zinc in red meat, nuts and means…to name just a few and Selenium can be found, for example in tuna  fortified breads, other grain products. If you want to brush up on you Antioxidant knowledge, check out our website, supermarket guru dot com


And finally, if you're looking for a few more ways to get your nutrients in, what about larvae….from Black Soldier flies! Thanks to graduate designer, Katharina Unger you can produce edible fly larvae in your home. How? "Farm 432", the table top insect breeding farm. The soldier flies are dropped into a chamber at the top of the appliance, where they develop into adult flies and move to a larger chamber. Here they mate and produce larvae, which fall down into a "kindergarten" area, mature and become trapped in a harvesting pot, ready for consumption. A few of the harvested larvae are selected to be dropped back into the top of the machine and start the cycle again. Now, the bigger question might be..why on earth would you want to eat Larvae from Black Soldier Flies? Designer Katharina Unger, told the architecture and design blog; "Dezeen" that "Black soldier fly larvae are one of the most efficient protein converters in insects, containing up to 42% of protein, a lot of calcium and amino acids," her goal? To encourage a new lifestyle of insect eating and providing an alternative protein source to meat.  Her favorite recipe? Larvae and tomato risotto!

That’s all for this week’s edition of Food News Today.  Don’t forget to check out our website at SupermarketGuru dot com or send us a message on Facebook and twitter! Food News Today is sponsored by Con Agra Foods, who shares with me the desire to provide the most current, interesting and unbiased food news. Thanks for tuning in and see you next week!

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