What’s for Dinner?

Home-cooked Asian Dinner

The Menu

Bean Sprout and Japanese Pickled Turnip and Cabbage

Stir-fried Chicken, Lettuce and Celery with Fermented Tofu

Stir-fried Shredded Pork with Green Pepper

Rice Cooked with Taiwanese Tea and Chicken

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Hungarian-style Stew of Shrimp with Cauliflower and Beans

Ingredients

1 onion
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 head cauliflower, about 3/4 pound
1 tablespoon paprika
1 teaspoon caraway seeds
2 bay leaves
1 can (14-1/2 ounces) chopped tomatoes
1-1/2 cups frozen green beans
2/3 pound cooked large shrimp
3/4 cup plain yogurt

Method

  1. Finely chop the onion. Put the oil, onion, and garlic in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook for 5 minutes, or until the onion is beginning to soften.
  2. Break the cauliflower into bite-sized florets and add them to the pan. Stir in the paprika, caraway seeds, and bay leaves. Cover and cook for 2 minutes.
  3. Stir in the chopped tomatoes and 4 tablespoons of boiling water. Return to a boil, reduce the heat slightly, cover, and simmer for 3 minutes, or until the cauliflower is just tender.
  4. Stir in the frozen green beans. Return to a boil, cover, and cook for 2 minutes. Finally, add the shrimp and gently heat through for a minute. Serve topped with a large spoonful of yogurt.

Makes 4 servings.

Cook’s Tip

Tender young cauliflower leaves and stalks are mild and sweet, and are just as nutritious as the florets. Although not used in this recipe, reserve leftover leaves and stalks for another use.

Source: Super Foods Cookbook

Cardiac Arrest? Someday, Drones May Come to Your Rescue

Alan Mozes wrote . . . . . .

Drones have been proposed for some pretty mundane uses, such as delivering pizzas or packages, but new research suggests the high-flying machines could be used to swoop in and save lives.

Swedish researchers think drones can quickly deliver defibrillators to someone whose heart has suddenly stopped beating.

“Each minute that passes after a sudden cardiac arrest decreases the chance of survival by approximately 10 percent,” explained lead investigator Andreas Claesson. He’s a paramedic with the Center for Resuscitation Science at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm.

“In rural areas, a drone carrying an AED [automated external defibrillator] could arrive far ahead — meaning 16 minutes [faster] — of emergency medical services,” he said.

And that, Claesson said, could “potentially save lives through earlier defibrillation as carried out by bystanders onsite.”

When someone in a hospital has a sudden cardiac arrest, trained staff can immediately use a life-saving defibrillator. These machines electrically shock the heart in the hope of restoring a normal beating rhythm.

If sudden cardiac arrest happens outside a hospital, emergency teams must battle traffic and distance to deliver defibrillators to those in need.

But the new study suggests that drones might be able to outpace ambulances by speeding unobstructed over clogged roads and long distances to drop an easy-to-use AED into the hands of people already on location.

Only about 10 percent of cardiac arrest patients pull through. But a super-fast application of CPR can roughly double or even triple a patient’s survival prospects, Claesson said.

The challenge has been connecting patients with trained emergency medical services (EMS) professionals in a timely way, Claesson noted, particularly in rural settings where hospitals and AED equipment are often far-flung. This means that “the people in the vicinity of a cardiac arrest are crucial for survival,” because they’re essentially the first caregivers.

It’s with that scenario in mind that the study set out to see if delivering defibrillators by drone would be effective, according to Claesson.

The U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute noted that AEDs are specially designed to be portable and usable by untrained bystanders.

The devices are often found in public facilities, such as sports venues, malls and airports.

Still, they’re not always in reach. And that means that when a cardiac arrest happens, many Americans — particularly those in remote areas — must call 911.

For the study, the Swedish research team outfitted a Stockholm-area fire station with a drone developed by the Swedish Transportation Agency. The devices were fully equipped with an AED, GPS, autopilot software, and a high-definition camera.

In 2016, investigators conducted 18 remotely operated simulated drone deliveries. The locations were within a roughly 6-mile radius of the fire station. Actual patients had experienced a cardiac arrest at each location sometime between 2006 and 2014.

The drone delivered the AED in just over 5 minutes. That compared with an average standard EMS delivery time of 22 minutes. That meant a delivery savings of almost 16 minutes, according to the report.

The average time to take-off was just 3 seconds after ordering a drone dispatch. For EMS, the average call to dispatch time was 3 minutes, the study found.

Because no actual patients were on hand and there was a second drone pilot on hand at the landing site, Claesson said his team doesn’t know how well the bystanders might interact with the drone or the AED. He also noted that aviation regulations will clearly have to be considered if such a system was ever implemented.

American College of Emergency Physicians spokesperson Dr. Leigh Vinocur serves as medical director of the urgent care division at MedStar Health in Columbia, Md.

She pointed out that the current investigation is “very small,” and didn’t account for real-world variables that could affect drone delivery, such as bad weather.

Yet Vinocur nonetheless views the theoretical prospect of drone-delivered defibrillators as “a great idea with a lot of potential.”

“We know that out-of-hospital cardiac arrest has a high mortality, that improves with both bystander CPR and early defibrillation with AED,” Vinocur said.

But Vinocur said some communities have limited nearby access to AEDs.

“Not only do greater distances have to be traversed to get to patients as well as transport to hospitals, there sometimes might not be enough equipment and personnel to cover multiple calls at once,” she said.

But, “in this study, they did find that in all instances the drone arrived before EMS,” a delivery speed innovation that Vinocur thinks could someday prove to be “clinically significant.”

The study was published as a research letter published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Source: HealthDay

Healthy Diet? That Depends on Your Genes

Joe Schwartz wrote . . . . . . . .

A recently published Cornell University study describes how shifts in the diets of Europeans after the introduction of farming 10,000 years ago led to genetic adaptations that favored the dietary trends of the time.

Before the Neolithic revolution that began around 10,000 years ago, European populations were hunter-gatherers that ate animal-based diets and some seafood. But after the advent of farming in southern Europe around 8,000 years ago, European farmers switched to primarily plant-heavy diets.

The study – the first to separate and compare adaptations that occurred before and after the Neolithic Revolution – reveals that these dietary practices are reflected in the genes of Europeans.

“The study shows what a striking role diet has played in the evolution of human populations,” said Alon Keinan, associate professor of computational and population genomics and the paper’s senior author. Kaixiong Ye, a postdoctoral researcher in Keinan’s lab, is the paper’s lead author.

The study has implications for the growing field of nutritional genomics, called nutrigenomics. Based on one’s ancestry, clinicians may one day tailor each person’s diet to her or his genome to improve health and prevent disease.

The study shows that vegetarian diets of European farmers led to an increased frequency of an allele that encodes cells to produce enzymes that helped farmers metabolize plants. Frequency increased as a result of natural selection, where vegetarian farmers with this allele had health advantages that allowed them to have more children, passing down this genetic variant to their offspring.

The FADS1 gene found in these vegetarian farmers produces enzymes that play a vital role in the biosynthesis of omega-3 and omega-6 long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (LCPUFA). These LCPUFAs are crucial for proper human brain development, controlling inflammation and immune response. While omega-3 and omega-6 LCPUFA can be obtained directly from animal-based diets, they are absent from plant-based diets. Vegetarians require FADS1 enzymes to biosynthesize LCPUFA from short-chain fatty acids found in plants (roots, vegetables and seeds).

Analysis of ancient DNA revealed that prior to humans’ farming, the animal-based diets of European hunter-gatherers predominantly favored the opposite version of the same gene, which limits the activity of FADS1 enzymes and is better suited for people with meat and seafood-based diets.

Analysis of the frequencies of these alleles in Europeans showed that the prevalence of the allele for plant-based diets decreased in Europeans until the Neolithic revolution, after which it rose sharply. Concurrently, the opposite version of the same gene found in hunter-gatherers increased until the advent of farming, after which it declined sharply.

The researchers also found a gradient in the frequencies of these alleles from north to south since the Neolithic Era, including modern-day populations. All farmers relied heavily on plant-based diets, but that reliance was stronger in the south, as compared to northern Europeans – whose farmer ancestors drank more milk and included seafood in their diet.

Plant-based alleles regulate cholesterol levels and have been associated with risk of many diseases, including inflammatory bowel disease, cardiovascular disease, arthritis and bipolar disorder.

“I want to know how different individuals respond differently to the same diet,” Ye said. Future studies will investigate additional links between genetic variation, diets and health, so that “in the future, we can provide dietary recommendations that are personalized to one’s genetic background,” he added.

Source: Cornell University

Low-fat Dairy Intake May Raise Parkinson’s Risk

Kathleen Doheny wrote . . . . . . . .

Though you might think eating low-fat dairy foods is a healthy move, new research suggests the habit is tied to a slight rise in the risk of developing Parkinson’s disease.

Experts who reviewed the study stressed that the findings are preliminary — the effect was a modest one and the research wasn’t designed to prove cause and effect.

In the study, researchers analyzed data on about 130,000 men and women, tracking their dietary habits every four years and the number of people diagnosed with Parkinson’s.

After 25 years, more than 1,000 people developed Parkinson’s, a progressive neurodegenerative illness affecting coordination and movement.

Those who consumed at least three servings of low-fat dairy a day had a 34 percent higher risk of getting the disorder than those who only consumed one serving a day. Looking specifically at milk consumption, the researchers found that drinking more than one serving of low-fat or skim milk daily was also linked with a 39 percent higher chance of developing Parkinson’s. (Low-fat also included nonfat).

No such association was seen with the consumption of full-fat dairy products, such as whole milk.

Even so, the researchers said it was crucial to put the risk in perspective.

“It is important to note that the risk of Parkinson’s disease is still low, even among people in our study who consumed higher amounts of low-fat dairy or milk,” said study author Katherine Hughes, a researcher at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health in Boston.

Of the 5,830 people who ate at least three servings a day of low-fat dairy, only 1 percent (60 people), developed Parkinson’s during the quarter century of follow-up. To compare, of the more than 77,000 who ate less than a serving a day, only 0.6 percent (483 people), received the diagnosis.

While the researchers found a link, the findings didn’t prove that eating dairy products causes Parkinson’s.

“This was an observational study, so like any observational study there is the potential for bias,” Hughes noted. For instance, the risk could actually be due to some third factor related to both dairy intake and disease risk. To rule out that possibility, the researchers did control for other factors that affect risk, such as coffee drinking, which has been linked with lower risk of Parkinson’s.

The researchers also can’t explain the link with certainty. According to Hughes, one possible explanation is that milk protein reduces the blood level of urate, a substance derived from uric acid excreted in the urine. Some research has shown that relatively high levels of urate (but not high enough to cause the condition known as gout) are linked with a lower risk of Parkinson’s.

Contaminants in dairy products, such as pesticides, may also play a role, Hughes added.

The researchers can’t say for sure why they found no link with full-fat dairy, but said it could be that the counter effects of saturated fats in high-fat dairy may help maintain a protective urate level.

The findings do add weight to previous findings from laboratory research, said James Beck, chief scientific officer for the Parkinson’s Foundation. But, he also cautioned that “all they are able to do is draw a correlation,” and not prove cause and effect.

“I would suggest people not alter their diets dramatically,” Beck said. “This is a modest increase in risk for a disease that, when you look at the general population, is still relatively rare.”

Getting enough calcium from dairy products is important for other health reasons, Beck added, such as maintaining bone health.

A dairy industry representative also pointed to the other benefits of dairy, including a reduced risk of both heart disease and type 2 diabetes, and lower blood pressure.

“Given that most people don’t eat enough dairy foods — with the average American only eating 1.8 of the recommended three servings of dairy per day … it’s likely in most people’s interest to eat a balanced, nutrient-rich diet, representative of all food groups — including dairy — while the emerging science unfolds,” said Chris Cifelli. He is vice president of nutrition research at the National Dairy Council.

Cifelli added that “total dairy intake was not significantly associated” with Parkinson’s risk, and that only an association was shown between the two.

The study was funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health and the U.S. Department of Defense. It was published online June 7 in the journal Neurology.

Roughly 1 million people have been diagnosed with Parkinson’s in the United States, according to the Parkinson’s Foundation, and 60,000 new cases are diagnosed annually.

Source: HealthDay


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