Food News Today for Saturday August 9th, 2014

Keep the "work" out of working out. Weird Watermelons.

August 9, 2014


If exercise feels like work to you,  you may end up sinfully snacking more than you should! Why? Well according to Cornell Food and Brand Lab, when exercise is perceived as work, you tend to think you deserve a treat for doing it. So, as a reward for the "work", you compensate with sweet treats which in turn may lead to weight gain. 

Brian Wansink and his colleagues at Cornell conducted studied the habits of two groups of adults taken on a walk. Aguide led one group on a walk framed as "scenic" to enjoy the view of the lake and wildlife. They walked 2 kilometers, or a little more than a mile. The second group was led on the same walk at the same pace. But their guide framed the walk as exercise, as a real workout. Wansink and his colleagues then observed what participants ate for lunch - and as he told NPR's The Salt,  "The group that had framed their walk as exercise ended up taking 35 percent more chocolate pudding than the 'scenic' walk group,". He did a similar exercise with other groups and found the same result. 

This may not be the largest study in the world, but it does offer interesting insights into how people frame exercise in their mind. If you think of  a work out as "work" - it might encourage you to seek reward when completed. Try - if you can - to think of exercise as fun!


If you need a novelty for a summer bbq - how about a square watermelon?!  In Vancouver, Urban Fare stores are again featuring the peculiar fruit for, wait for it…. $199.99!  

So, what is this and where does it come from?  These square watermelons are actually grown in Japan in tempered glass boxes. They were designed to be easier to stack and store than their natural round shape, but because it's such a labour intensive process, only a few hundred are produced in Japan annually. And no, they are not genetically modified.

Urban Fare has actually been importing the fruit to Vancouver for about 10 years, they started at just $99, now they're up to $199.  And in case you're wondering, according to one news report they are harvested before they are really ripe, so don't even taste good!  

Sounds like a case of style over substance.

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