What’s for Dinner?

Japanese 4-course Dinner

The Menu

Matsutake and Shrimp Chawanmushi

Pork Cutlet

Wakyu Beef Rice

Trio-dessert Combo

Moroccan-style Spicy Salmon


4 salmon fillets, skin on, abut 6 oz each
3 tbsp olive oil.
2 tbsp Za’atar spice blend
1/4 tsp Kosher salt.
freshly ground black pepper

Cucumber Yogurt Sauce

2/3 cup chopped English cucumber
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1/4 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves
2 tsp seeded and chopped jalapeno pepper
1 small chopped garlic clove
1/3 tsp Kosher salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper


  1. To make the sauce, process all ingredients in a blender until smooth. Makes about 1-1/4 cups.
  2. Preheat grill to 350°F to 400°F (medium-high) heat.
  3. Brush fish with oil, and sprinkle with next 3 ingredients. Grill, covered with grill lid, 3 minutes on each side (medium-rare) or to desired degree of doneness.
  4. Serve with Cucumber Yogurt Sauce and Fettoush, a Middle Eastern salad or any salad of your choice.

Makes 4 servings.


Za’atar is a Middle Eastern spice blend that can be found in most Middle Eastern markets.

Source: Cooking in Everyday English

Infographic: Why Seafood Rocks?

See large image . . . . .

Source: Slap Fish Restaurant

Happiness Doesn’t Bring Good Health, Study Finds

Denise Gradydec wrote . . . . .

Go ahead and sulk. Unhappiness won’t kill you.

A study published on Wednesday in The Lancet, following one million middle-aged women in Britain for 10 years, finds that the widely held view that happiness enhances health and longevity is unfounded.

“Happiness and related measures of well-being do not appear to have any direct effect on mortality,” the researchers concluded.

“Good news for the grumpy” is one way to interpret the findings, said Sir Richard Peto, an author of the study and a professor of medical statistics and epidemiology at the University of Oxford.

He and his fellow researchers decided to look into the subject because, he said, there is a widespread belief that stress and unhappiness cause disease.

Such beliefs can fuel a tendency to blame the sick for bringing ailments on themselves by being negative, and to warn the well to cheer up or else.

“Believing things that aren’t true isn’t a good idea,” Professor Peto said in an interview. “There are enough scare stories about health.”

The new study says earlier research confused cause and effect, suggesting that unhappiness made people ill when it is actually the other way around.

The results come from the so-called Million Women Study, which recruited women ages 50 to 69 from 1996 to 2001, and tracked them with questionnaires and official records of deaths and hospital admissions. The questionnaires asked how often the women felt happy, in control, relaxed and stressed, and also instructed them to rate their health and list ailments like high blood pressure, diabetes, asthma, arthritis and depression or anxiety.

The researchers included questions about happiness “because it’s something a lot of people were interested in,” Professor Peto said.

When the answers were analyzed statistically, unhappiness and stress were not associated with an increased risk of death. It is not clear whether the findings apply to men.

Professor Peto said particularly important data came from 500,000 women who reported on their baseline surveys that they were in good health, with no history of heart disease, cancer, stroke or emphysema.

A “substantial minority” of these healthy women said they were stressed or unhappy, he said, but over the next decade they were no more likely to die than were the women who were generally happy.

“This finding refutes the large effects of unhappiness and stress on mortality that others have claimed,” Dr. Peto said.

Unhappiness itself may not affect health directly, but it can do harm in other ways, by driving people to suicide, alcoholism or other dangerous behaviors, he warned.

This study seems to have motivated poking fun and responding with clever comebacks, many of which are highly entertaining. My own belief,…

This type of study, which depends on participants’ self-assessments, is not considered as reliable as a rigorously designed experiment in which subjects are picked at random and assigned to a treatment or control group. But the huge number of people in this study gives it power.

Still, some observers noted that measuring emotions is more nuanced and complex than simply declaring happiness or unhappiness.

“I would have liked to see more discussion of how people translate these complicated feelings into a self-report of happiness,” said Baruch Fischhoff, a psychologist at Carnegie Mellon University who studies decision-making, who was not involved in the study. “Think about everything that’s going on in your life and tell me how happy you are. Happiness is a squishy measure.”

The results of earlier studies have been mixed, with some finding that unhappiness causes illness and others showing no link, Dr. Fischhoff said.

“It looks to me like people have collected a lot of data without finding a clear signal,” he said. “So if there is some correlation out there, it’s not very big.”

An editorial accompanying the study in The Lancet noted that it had “the largest population so far in happiness studies,” and praised its statistical methods. But it also said more research was needed.

Professor Peto said he doubted that the new study would change many minds because beliefs about the perils of unhappiness are so ingrained.

“People are still going to believe that stress causes heart attacks,” he said.

Source: New York Times

Survival Rates for Patients with Prostate Cancer Better with Surgery than Radiotherapy

A rigorous evaluation of survival rates has shown that cancer patients with localised prostate cancer — the most common form of prostate cancer — have a better chance of survival if treated by surgery than by radiotherapy. These findings hold true even after accounting for type of radiation and the aggressiveness of cancer. This is the most robust analysis (meta-analysis) to date of published literature comparing surgery and radiotherapy for localised prostate cancer. The study is published in the peer-reviewed journal, European Urology1.

According to senior author, Dr Robert Nam (Odette Cancer Centre, Sunnybrook Research Institute, University of Toronto, Canada):

“In the past, studies that have compared the success rates of surgery or radiation have been confusing because of their methods. We have evaluated all the good-quality data comparing surgery and radiotherapy, and the results are pretty conclusive; in general, surgery results in better mortality rates than radiotherapy. Nevertheless, there are times when radiotherapy may be more appropriate than surgery, so it is important that a patient discusses treatment options with his clinician”.

Localised prostate cancer — where the cancer is confined to the prostate — accounts for around 80% of prostate cancers. Around 400,000 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer each year in Europe, meaning that around 320,000 will suffer from localised prostate cancer2. The most common way of treating localised prostate cancers are either with radiotherapy, or with surgery. The choice of radiotherapy or surgery varies according to country. For example, in England and Wales, radiotherapy is used more often than surgery3.

The researchers conducted a meta-analysis (a ‘study of studies’) which compared 19 studies including up to 118,830 patients who had undergone treatment with either surgery or radiation.

The analysis had to consider a variety of studies which compared different parameters (such as duration of the study). Fifteen of the studies compared patients who died of prostate cancer after surgery or radiation; they found that over the duration of the studies, patients were twice as likely to die from prostate cancer after being treated with radiation, compared to surgery, (Hazard Ratio 2.08, 95% confidence interval 1.76-2.47, p < 0.00001).

Ten of the studies also looked at overall mortality (where the cause of death was not necessarily from prostate cancer), and found that patients treated with radiation were about one and half times more likely to die sooner than patients who had surgery (HR 1.63, 95% confidence interval 1.54-1.73, p < 0.00001)

"Both treatment approaches should be discussed with patients prior to the start of therapy," says Dr Robert Nam, "the important thing about this research is that it gives physicians and patients additional, information to consider when making the decision about how to treat localised prostate cancer.

Commenting Professor Nicolas Mottet (St Étienne, France) Chairman of the European Association of Urology Prostate Guideline Panel said:

"This systematic review suggests that survival is better after surgery compared to various forms of radiotherapy. It deserves attention, as it is based on the best available data. However, definitive proof needs a large well-conducted randomized control trial, such as the upcoming PROTECT trial which is due to report next year. So we certainly need to take this analysis into account, but it doesn't yet give us a definitive answer as to the best treatment. Although this paper should not change clinical practice, I agree with the authors, this analysis gives us important, additional information".

Source: EurekAlert!

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