Thought for Food Blog

Most milk substitutes are low in iodine - here's why it matters

Posted by Shira Rossiter

04-Oct-2017 22:45:00

This post was originally published on The Conversation, and was written by Sarah Bath, a lecturer in Public Health Nutrition and Margaret Rayman, a professor of Nutritional Medicine, both based at the University of Surrey.

Milk and dairy products are the main source of iodine in many diets, and an important iodine source in many countries. However, our latest research found that the iodine concentration of most alternatives to cows’ milk – such as soy and almond “milk” – is very low. This matters because deficiency of iodine, especially during pregnancy, affects brain development and is linked to lower intelligence.

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Topics: milk and milk substitutes, labelling, fish, nutrition, allergies and allergens, seafood, pregnancy, iodine, eggs, soy, dairy, nuts, vitamins and minerals, health, cognitive function, plant-based diets, supplements

Gut Feelings: The gut-brain axis and mental health

Posted by Chris Cattini

01-Sep-2017 12:12:02

Our second brain

We have a second brain in our guts. Known as the enteric nervous system, it consists of a mesh-like network of around 100 million neurons lining the entire gastrointestinal tract. These neurons include a range of cell types operating via a complex system of circuitry largely independent of the central nervous system.

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Topics: zinc, sleep, fish, cereals, seafood, bacteria, fruit, vegetables, eggs, fibre, soy, meat, dairy, immune system, amino acids, neuroscience, fatty acids, nuts, tryptophan, gut health, cognitive function, mental health, central nervous system, fermented foods, supplements

Health Check: can chopping your vegetables boost their nutrients?

Posted by Josh Newport

12-Jun-2017 07:00:00

This post was originally published on The Conversation.

We all know eating vegetables is a good way to improve health. And for many years the focus has been on just eating more vegetables, be it fresh, frozen or tinned. But what if there was a quicker and easier way to get more benefit from our vegetables? Can the way we prepare vegetables boost their nutrition? Does tearing or chopping your lettuce makes any difference? And if we chop, does it matter what type of knife we use?

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Topics: nutrition, nutrients, vegetables, enzymes, vitamins and minerals, food research, health, polyphenols

Edible Insects – The Food of the Future?

Posted by Naomi McGrath

10-May-2017 08:30:00

The eating of insects, or entomophagy, is not a new concept. In fact, insects have been eaten around the world since prehistoric times.

 

A history of insect consumption

Stable carbon isotope analysis of the bones and dental enamel of australopithecines, for example, has shown that they were significantly enriched in isotope 13C, suggesting that the diet of these people was largely composed of animals feeding on grasses, including insects. Termites are reported to have been included into the Plio-Pleistocene hominin diet, and an analysis of fossils from caves in the USA and Mexico showed that coprolites from caves in Mexico contained ants, beetle larvae, lice, ticks and mites, providing further evidence for entomophagy in human history. 

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Topics: zinc, texture, food safety, food security, nutrition, protein, allergies and allergens, pesticides, cholesterol, nutrients, magnesium, amino acids, fatty acids, calcium, enzymes, vitamins and minerals, environment and sustainability, Asia, Africa, consumer behaviour, insect foods, novel foods

Food Trends in India

Posted by Chris Cattini

02-Mar-2017 11:21:53

India is one of the key markets poised for future growth. If the country continues to develop at its current rate, it will become the world’s 5th largest economy by 2025.

The Indian consumer segment is dominated by a large urban mass, including both graduates and blue collar workers, and the country has one of the youngest populations in the world. More than 50% of the consumer base is less than 30 years old, including 440 millennials and 390 million members of generation Z (born after 2000). An increasing number of these young people have higher disposable incomes than their older counterparts and a greater tendency to spend their money rather than save it.

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Topics: rice, labelling, organic, social media, fruit, vegetables, chocolate, alcohol, dairy, food processing, retail and marketing, food production, functional foods, Asia, consumer behaviour, India, fermented foods

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