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Can We Trust Jim?

In # 10: Communicating food science, Leftovers by Brandon0 Comments

I regularly research information about nutrition optimization and work out plans, so I came across Jim Stoppani a while ago and thought he was very interesting. He is a personal trainer who has his PhD from Yale in cellular and molecular physiology. This would lead me and over a million-other people that follow him to believe his information is accurate and precise. In the video, I watched called “9 Nutrition Rules for Building Muscle” he discussed his rules to maximize muscle gain for his “Shortcut to Strength” 6-week workout plan. He goes in detail about macronutrients and the amount of each to eat per pound of body weight, how often to eat, specific types of proteins to include, a handful of supplements to optimize uptake of vitamins and other nutrients. Personally, being a student of science I have taken classes in nutrition and biology so I had a very clear understanding of everything he said. The information was direct and straight to the point. He never really tried to “dumb” anything down. He speaks very clear and direct, a great …

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Ravioli Ravioli, Give Me the Formuoli

In # 9: Molecular Gastronomy, Leftovers by Trace0 Comments

Molecular gastronomical cooking is one of the newest cooking waves passing over the culinary world. It involves the altering of one of the major components of food: texture, flavor, temperature, or smell. This is accomplished by the use of isolated compounds or chemicals such as emulsifiers and acids, and using these as tools to create exciting new ways of preparing food. In my research I found an incredibly striking example of this technique. Crystal clear Ravioli. This presentation allows the person dining to see exactly what is in their stuffed pasta before they eat it. This incredible feet is accomplished by the use of lecithin, an emulsifier. In this case, it is derived from soybeans, and it is concentrated and formed into a sheet of crystal clear paper called an oblate. The paper is folded in half, crimped using a heat sealer on one edge, and then filled with any filling imaginable, as long as it has a low water content. If the filling were high in water, the film would start to dissolve from the inside out, creating an …

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Nutella… a Spread to a Powder!

In # 9: Molecular Gastronomy, Leftovers by Brandon0 Comments

Ever wanted to make your favorite spread into powder? Well look no further it’s here! With the polysaccharide maltodextrin which is a breakdown of starch from potatoes, corn, wheat, or most commonly tapioca. It is used as a thickener, low-calorie sweetener, and in this case, turn high-fat foods into powder. Maltodextrin absorbs oils and fats in foods which is what makes Nutella from a spread to a powder, by simply whisking 1/3 cup of Nutella with ½ cup of Maltodextrin. Viola! Now you have a simple, and cool molecular gastronomy trick to impress the masses.

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Pro Probiotic/ Prebiotic Labeling

In # 7: Gut health, Leftovers by Brandon1 Comment

The definition of a probiotic is live microorganisms when administered in adequate amounts confer a health benefit to the host. The definition of a prebiotic is a substrate that is selectively utilized by host microorganisms conferring a health benefit. The underlying theme here is that probiotics and prebiotics provide adequate health benefits for people. This is not in question. What is in question is the stringency of the FDA and ESFA when it comes to food labeling of health benefits. The biggest issue with these companies is the intensity in which the health claim needs to be stated. What benefits consumers is the knowledge that there is a benefit to consuming a certain food and that the claim is true.   The FDA and ESFA are right in which there should be very stringent tests on how the probiotic and or prebiotic represent the health claim. The best thing for consumers is that what they read on a label is true. The issue is that what they read doesn’t have to be scientific literature. The ESFA would force companies to …

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Gut Health

In # 7: Gut health, Leftovers by Yixin0 Comments

There are trillions of microorganisms living in the intestinal tract, and these microorganisms gradually reach the balance of species and quantity in the process of reproduction, which is closely related to the normal metabolism of the organism. Studies have shown that the structure and composition of intestinal microbiota affect the host’s immune function, gastrointestinal development, nutrient processing and other important physiological activities. Once the intestinal flora is out of order, a variety of metabolic diseases will follow. So nowadays, the benefits of probiotics and prebiotics to intestinal health are hotly debated. Well, are they really good for intestinal health or being promoted too much by food companies? Probiotics, the concept originated in the Greek, is “for life”. The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization and the WHO have defined probiotics which is a kind of beneficial bacteria that can inhibit the growth of pathogenic bacteria to maintain the balance of intestinal flora. Prebiotics and probiotics can affect the balance of intestinal flora, but they are different in essence: prebiotics are carbohydrates without biological activity, promote the growth and breeding of probiotics, which indirectly play a …

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GMO Friend Not Foe

In # 6: Labeling GMOs, Leftovers by Brandon0 Comments

As our society becomes more educated we like to be more informed on the decisions we make. Even looking back twenty years ago, people would purchase necessities such as food without wondering what the repercussions of how the food was grown/ obtained. Now there is a huge debate on the labeling of genetically modified foods (GMO). The largest issue is that people relate GMOs with pesticides which has been proven to be harmful is inhaled or consumed. The truth is that every GMO that is approved is 100% safe and does not lead to disease. In fact, GMOs can do the same job as pesticides without causing any harm to people. They can also fortify nutrients into foods, making them healthier. Many scientists beg the question that we have been altering the natural selection of plant and animal species ever since people started selective breeding. Now this doesn’t mean I don’t believe that GMOs shouldn’t be labeled. I believe in transparency within companies is what makes companies thrive if they are doing the “right thing”. Looking at GMO labeling from …

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Sustainability: A Three Part Problem?

In # 5: Sustainability, Leftovers by Chloe1 Comment

From an environmental standpoint sustainability is the capacity to endure; the renewal of the environment and it’s resources. As our world population continues to grow, sustainability becomes as increasing concern. Our Earth can only support so many human beings, and already our population is struggling to feed ourselves. Food scientist play a major role in sustainability projects, we can not only create genetically modified organisms, but can also shape the food industry into becoming less damaging to our environment. Major food companies such as, Hershey, ConAgra, General Mills, and many more are starting to realize that they make a huge impact on our world’s consumption, and have started to create sustainability programs. I specifically decided to focus on one of the major beverage producers to see how their green program measured up, PepsiCo. PepsiCo’s sustainability program centers around three main goals: products, planet, and people. PepsiCo is traditionally known for it’s products: Pepsi, Gatorade, Mtn Dew, Lipton, etc. However, recently they have implemented new product goals, “We will continue to refine our food and beverage choices to meet changing consumer …

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Organic Is Not Worth It

In # 3: Organic foods - up close and personal, Leftovers by Elizabeth3 Comments

I have never been one to go shopping for organic goods. I personally have never had any interest in them mainly because they are so expensive and I am so broke right now. My first time going to Whole Foods was my freshman year in college with my close friends. This was actually the first time I had ever even heard of the store. They insisted on getting their groceries there and then eating the salad bar for dinner. I actually hated going there but I just went with them to get the salad bar and see what hot foods were out that day. The salad bar is probably the most reasonably priced thing in the entire store. You can make your own salad and then they weigh it at the checkout. Mine usually came out to be between $5-$6 which isn’t bad. My friends would always buy tons of groceries from there though. I couldn’t help but roll my eyes every time the cashier told them their total. They would barely get any groceries yet it would be so …

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No more, no less, none.

In # 2: Junk Food Dissuasion, Leftovers by Chuan0 Comments

The World Health Organization, WHO stated that the number one cause of death in the world is Ischaemic Heart Disease (WHO, Jan 2017), but what leads the birth of this vicious killing machine? There are many answers, but many of them related to one thing, excessive consumption of junk food. Let’s define junk food. Junk food is a kind of nutrition supplement which provides little or none actual nutritional value or even harms the body when consumed. We come across junk food every day, might have eaten them every day and still little do we know it will kill us one day if we don’t stop practicing this unhealthy habit of eating junk food. Many attempts of dissuading the intake of junk food had been proven useless. Calorie information are often ignored, hardcore fans of pop wouldn’t mind paying more for their favorite guilty pleasure. If all these fail, what else could work? What can the government still do? Let’s pretend we live in a communist governed country. A mandatory exercise session for the citizens to have a healthier lifestyle …

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Grow your food!

In # 2: Junk Food Dissuasion, Leftovers by Justin1 Comment

I would like to approach the issue of the obesity epidemic by proposing a new plan of personal farming. If each person in the United States were to raise their own livestock and grow their own food, the factor of convenience in stores would be replaced by convenience at home. The extra energy spent on growing their own foods would accumulate a good exercise cycle. With this being said, growth and development of naturally grown foods can boost protection of the immune system by reintroducing foreign materials back into the body such as those that cause allergens and disease. Convenience plays a huge role in the obesity factor. As more and more fast food restaurants open, the level of convenience also increases. Being able to grab a hamburger with fries and a soft drink on every street corner rewards those who don’t have time. However, being able to work for your food, being able to grow it yourself, offers healthier alternatives to convenience. For example, a vegetable garden; instead of going to the store and buying ingredients to compose a …

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The Food Network Taught Me

In # 1: You are what you eat, Leftovers by Brandon1 Comment

There are many ways food has influenced my life. Originally food was introduced to me by my mom as she always made the best spaghetti, breakfast for dinner and honey mustard roasted chicken thighs. Throughout the years she has always cooked, and always found a way to keep making new different foods to keep me eating.  Suddenly, my mom is taking night classes to get her master’s degree which meant I would now have to cook dinner for myself, after school, and football and track practice. It’s not like I’ve never cooked before, but I’ve tried a few times and had very little success. The first night she had class she previously made oven roasted turkey leg with bell peppers and onions with a side of rice. The delightful weigh the onions and bell peppers lend all their flavor to the succulent turkey leg was divine. What I didn’t know is that this will be what I cook next week when she has class. The night comes, my mom leaves all the ingredients for me and I begin; boiling water, …

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Never Take Food For Granted

In # 1: You are what you eat, Leftovers by Cade1 Comment

Food is so easy to take for granted when it is always available. Think about it. In the United States, it is rarely unavailable to the average human and we are able to eat theoretically whenever we please. Unless you’re a wrestler. Wrestlers always have this time from October through March when they are “cutting” weight and fasting in order to make their desired weight class. This practice has allowed me to appreciate food on a different level. When something gets taken away from a person, it makes that thing so much more valuable and cherished. When food is taken away from a person, it gets appreciated fully because that person constantly thinks about it. The food a wrestler puts into their body during this fasting time is ever so important. The way they choose their food depends on when the weigh-in is. If the weigh-in is a week away, their diet would be different than if it was two days away. A typical diet a week out could consist of many carbs for a sustained energy source along with …

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Tell Me About It, Spud.

In # 1: You are what you eat, Leftovers by Casey2 Comments

I grew up eating family meals around the kitchen table where enough food was cooked for at least eight people every night. It didn’t matter if someone worked later or had some sort of sports practice, we made it work where we could all eat supper together at night. Most meals were meat and potato (and vegetable, usually something from our garden) type of meals.  It was a rule that everyone had to clear their plate and finish their glass of milk before they could be done and leave the table. We learned manners at the table such as: don’t start eating until everyone has their food, and no elbows on the table. When I was young, my dad did most of the grilling and my mom was the one who cooked most of the meals. She is one of the reasons why I love to cook and bake. When she was a child in her early years of grade school, she was responsible for having supper ready when her seven brothers and sisters and parents came in from working …

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Spaetzle, and Barbeque, and Pizza, Oh My!

In # 1: You are what you eat, Leftovers by Therese3 Comments

My favorite thing about food is its ability to bring people together. Whether eating it or preparing it, food can create connections and a greater sense of community. Sharing in a meal creates such a sense of intimacy because you’re allowing another person or people to be a part of something that keeps you alive. Whether it’s first dates or celebrating holidays with family, the memories made while sharing a meal can last a lifetime. Some of my favorite memories are those made cooking with my family. My dad had four brothers and two sisters and grew up in a very old school, Catholic family. I believe that a lot of that carried over into my family of six — my mom, my dad, my three brothers and I. When I was young, up until around the age of 8, both of my parents worked as doctors, and were understandably very busy. I don’t remember a lot about what meals were like when I was that young, but I do remember that every Wednesday, we ate lunch at the food …

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Authentic or not I love them

In # 1: You are what you eat, Leftovers by Kiera2 Comments

My mouth is already dripping from just thinking about the smell that was wandering throughout my house. I had never smelled this juicy, mouthwatering food before in my life so I jolted myself out of bed to head down to the kitchen. My mom was hovering over the stove while I tried to peak over her shoulder to see what the delicious smell was. After her getting annoyed with my breath tickling her neck she asked me what I wanted. I told her I was curious what she was making. She looked at me and told me that she was making tacos. Tacos was the delightful smell that I kept wanting to breathe in. Yes, I said tacos. I never thought that ground beef and a packet of seasoning could impact my life so greatly. Throughout the years from when I first found out what tacos were (I was 7), I learned how to make them myself. One day while I was making them for lunch, my mom asked me if I knew what culture tacos even came from. Of …

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That eclipse is making me hungry

In Featured Posts, Front page, Leftovers by Prof0 Comments

The food science eclipse-viewing deck party was a big hit.  The eclipse was perfectly visible, and there was lots of great food.  In fact, at first, the partial eclipse had a banana look, and as I was standing next to Dr. Hallen-Adams, our department’s fungi expert, it also looked like a Fusarium mold spore.  The total eclipse may have even reminded you of an Oreo or a Moon Pie.  Any other food look-alike suggestions?