Green tea can help beat superbugs according to Egyptian scientists speaking yesterday at the Society for General Microbiology, Edinburgh.

The pharmacy researchers have shown that drinking green tea helps the action of important antibiotics in their fight against resistant superbugs, making them up to three times more effective.

Green tea is a very common beverage in Egypt, and it is quite likely that patients will drink green tea while taking antibiotics. The medical researchers wanted to find out if green tea would interfere with the action of the antibiotics, have no effect, or increase the medicines’ effects.

“We tested green tea in combination with antibiotics against 28 disease causing micro-organisms belonging to two different classes,” says Dr Mervat Kassem from the Faculty of Pharmacy at Alexandria University in Egypt. “In every single case green tea enhanced the bacteria-killing activity of the antibiotics. For example the killing effect of chloramphenicol was 99.99% better when taken with green tea than when taken on its own in some circumstances.” Read the rest of this entry »

  • Rank of shrimp in popularity among all types of seafood Americans eat – #1
  • Pounds of shrimp the average American consumed in 2006 – 4.4
  • Share of shrimp sold in the U.S. that comes from the Southeast U.S. (Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic Ocean), where fisheries and farms are held to stricter standards – 10%
  • Share of shrimp sold in the U.S. that comes largely from Southeast Asia and Latin America, where environmental regulations are sometimes lax and often not enforced – 90%
  • Share of U.S. shrimp imports that come from Thailand, our largest single supplier – 33% Read the rest of this entry »

A vast array of pharmaceuticals — including antibiotics, anti-convulsants, mood stabilizers and sex hormones — have been found in the drinking water supplies of at least 41 million Americans, an Associated Press investigation shows.

To be sure, the concentrations of these pharmaceuticals are tiny, measured in quantities of parts per billion or trillion, far below the levels of a medical dose. Also, utilities insist their water is safe.

But the presence of so many prescription drugs — and over-the-counter medicines like acetaminophen and ibuprofen — in so much of our drinking water is heightening worries among scientists of long-term consequences to human health. Read the rest of this entry »

  • The National School Lunch Program served more than 5 billion lunches in 2007.
  • The average cost of a lunch for the last school year was $1.80.
  • The Department of Agriculture has not changed rules about the nutritional content of federally subsidized school lunches in 30 years.
  • School lunches must meet the applicable recommendations of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, which recommend that no more than 30 percent of an individuals calories come from fat, and less than 10 percent from saturated fat. Fewer than 1/3 of public school lunches meet these standards.
  • Over the last two decades, rates of obesity have tripled in children and adolescents, and only 2% of children eat a diet that is healthy according to U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) criteria.

Read the rest of this entry »

McDonald’s restaurants are in 120 countries and territories around the world and serve nearly 54 million customers each day. They seem to be just about everywhere.

To see just how many McDonald’s are in your town or zip code go to Foodio54 and enter your location, city, state or zip code. They’ll show you how many golden arches are close by and how your location ranks nationally and for your state.

In my area (a suburb of Atlanta) there is one McDonald’s every 7.15 square miles and for every 15,939 people. In Astoria, NY there is a McDonald’s every 0.88 square miles and for every 8,532 people. Read the rest of this entry »

Cooking Light magazine, celebrating its 20th year of publication, embarked on a mission to rank the top major metropolitan areas that best fit their philosophy to eat smart, be fit, and live well.

Rankings were based on the following 15 criteria:

-Does the city have critically acclaimed food professionals? Source: James Beard-nominated restaurants
-How do its restaurants rate? Source: Zagat Survey
-Is organic dining a part of the local dining scene? Source:
-How many chefs work in the city? Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Read the rest of this entry »

Both Senator Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton released statements on the Department of Agriculture’s decision to recall 143 million pounds of frozen beef that came from “downed” animals. The consumption of downed cattle pose a higher risk of contamination from E. coli, salmonella, and mad cow disease. Read the rest of this entry »

The U.S. Department of Agriculture today ordered the recall of 143 million pounds of frozen beef from a California slaughterhouse, the subject of an animal-abuse investigation, that provided meat to school lunch programs.

Officials said it was the largest beef recall in the United States, surpassing a 1999 ban of 35 million pounds of ready-to-eat meats.

The recall will affect beef products dating to Feb. 1, 2006, that came from Chino-based Westland/Hallmark Meat Co., the federal agency said.

Secretary of Agriculture Ed Schafer said his department has evidence that Westland did not routinely contact its veterinarian when cattle became non-ambulatory after passing inspection, violating health regulations.

“Because the cattle did not receive complete and proper inspection, Food Safety and Inspection Service has determined them to be unfit for human food and the company is conducting a recall,” Schafer said in a statement. Read the rest of this entry »

Ingestion of processed free glutamic acid (MSG) is known to produce a variety of adverse reactions in some people. These reactions, although seemingly dissimilar, are no more diverse than reactions found as side effects of certain neurological drugs.

The most common symptoms of MSG sensitivity are headache, flushing, tingling, weakness, and stomachache. After eating meals prepared with MSG, people with MSG sensitivity may have a migraine, visual disturbance, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, weakness, tightness of the chest, difficulty breathing, skin rash, or sensitivity to light, noise, or smells. Read the rest of this entry »