After Failing With Worm Burgers, Norwegian Grocery Chain to Launch Cricket Burgers

Paul Joseph Watson wrote . . . . . . . . .

After failing to convince consumers to buy worm burgers, a Norwegian grocery chain is trying to market burgers made from ground up crickets.

Supermarket Meny scrapped the idea of worm burgers after insufficient demand but seem convinced that they can stir up enthusiasm for people to chomp down on insects.

“It is difficult to see whether Norwegian consumers are more open to insects in a burger than bread, but the link to testing alternative protein sources, such as insects, is probably more closely linked to a burger,” communications manager of Meny, Nina Horn Hynne, told E24.

According to the article, office staff at Meny were asked to try the cricket burger and they found it very appetizing.

“It tastes good,” says one employee. “Crunchy but with a little unusual taste.”

Thomas Rognstad, chairman of Urban Food in Norway, said the burgers, which are made by grounding down the crickets and adding flour, were easy to produce because crickets don’t need much space, water or food and they contain 60 per cent protein.

Judging by some of the respondents to the article, the cricket burgers are probably going to be as unpopular as the worm burgers.

“There no chance in hell I would eat this,” said one.

“No boycott is needed because there won’t even be any sale,” added another.

However, when cricket burgers were launched at a Mexican restaurant in Soho, New York, they were apparently a “surprise hit.”

Eating bugs has been heavily promoted by cultural institutions and the media over the past year because people are being readied to accept drastically lower standards of living under disastrous global ‘Green New Deal’ programs that will make normal meat production vastly more expensive.

Source: Summit News

Whole-Wheat Cranberry Muffins

Ingredients

Cooking spray (optional)
3/4 cup uncooked, quick-cooking oatmeal
1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
1/2 cup all-purpose all-purpose flour
1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup sweetened, dried cranberries
1/4 cup toasted wheat germ
2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 cup pineapple juice
1 large egg
1 tablespoon canola oil
2 tablespoon unsalted sunflower seeds

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Lightly spray a 12-cup muffin pan with cooking spray or put paper muffin cups in the pan.
  2. In a medium bowl, stir together the oatmeal, flours, brown sugar, cranberries, wheat germ, baking powder, and baking soda. Make a well in the center. Pour the pineapple juice, egg, and oil into the well, stirring until just moistened. Do not overmix; the batter should be slightly lumpy. Spoon the batter evenly into the muffin cups. Sprinkle with the sunflower seeds.
  3. Bake for 11 to 12 minutes, or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean. These muffins don’t need a cooling time before removing from the pan.

Makes 4 muffins.

Source: American Heart Association

Amazon Opens No-cashier Grocery Store

Joseph Pisani wrote . . . . . . . . .

Amazon wants to kill the supermarket checkout line.

The online retailing giant is opening its first cashier-less supermarket, where shoppers can grab milk or eggs and walk out without waiting in line or ever opening their wallets. It’s the latest sign that Amazon is serious about shaking up the US$800 billion grocery industry.

At the new store, which opened Tuesday in Amazon’s hometown of Seattle, shoppers scan a smartphone app to enter the store. Cameras and sensors track what’s taken off shelves. Items are charged to an Amazon account after leaving.

“I love the convenience of literally grabbing and going” said Art Kuniyuki, a payroll and benefits manager from Seattle, who spent US$15 on Barilla pasta, Dove chocolate and other groceries shortly after the store opened.

Called Amazon Go Grocery, the new store is an expansion of its two-year-old chain of 25 Amazon Go convenience stores. It’s 10,400 square feet — more than five times the size of the convenience stores — and stocks much more beyond the sodas and sandwiches found at Amazon Go.

Cameron Janes, who helps oversee Amazon’s physical stores, said the technology had to be tweaked to account for how people squeeze tomatoes to test for ripeness or rummage through avocados to find just the right one. Nothing at the store is weighed. One blood orange goes for 53 cents; a banana is 19 cents.

Amazon is not new to groceries. It made a splash in 2017 when it bought Whole Foods and its 500 stores. It’s also been expanding its online grocery delivery service. But it’s still far behind rival Walmart, the nation’s largest grocer, which has more than 4,700 stores. Walmart’s online grocery service has also been popular with customers, who buy online and then drive to a store to pick up their order.

Amazon also plans to open another type of grocery store in Los Angeles sometime this year, but the company said it won’t use the cashier-less technology at that location and has kept other details under wraps. The company declined to say if it plans to open more Amazon Go Grocery stores, and said there are no plans to bring the technology to Whole Foods stores.

Much of the fruits and vegetables come from the same suppliers at Whole Foods, Janes said. And it has products from the Whole Foods store brand 365, such as organic oatmeal and bagged baby carrots. But it also sells Oreos, Cheez-Its and other stuff banned from the natural grocer.

Families can shop together with just one phone scanning everyone in. Anything they grab and leave the store with will be added to the tab of the person who signed them in. But shoppers shouldn’t help out a stranger reaching for the top shelf: Amazon warns that grabbing an item for someone else means you’ll be charged for it.

Hoping to catch up to Amazon, other retailers and startups are racing to bring similar cashierless technology to stores. Earlier this month, 7-Eleven said it is testing a cashier-less store for employees inside its offices in Irving, Texas.

But cashier-less stores have come under scrutiny from lawmakers and advocates who say they discriminate against low-income people who may not have a credit card or bank account. Amazon has since let customers pay with cash at its convenience stores, and the company said shoppers can do the same at the grocery store by alerting a worker to let them in through the turnstile.

The stores also eliminates the job of cashiers. Janes declined to say exactly how many people the store employs, only saying it is “several dozen.” Workers greet customers and walk around aisles restocking shelves. One employee stands by the alcohol section, checking IDs of shoppers who want wine or beer.

While cashier-less stores remove the annoyance of waiting in line to pay, it also kills some joys of the supermarket. There’s no one to bag groceries. Instead, Amazon gives out reusable bags so shoppers can fill them as they shop. And there’s no deli counter, butcher or fishmonger. Instead, sliced ham, steaks and salmon fillets are already packaged and found in refrigerated shelves.

“Just walk out technology is kind of cool, in theory,” said David Bishop, a partner at retail consultancy Brick Meets Click, but shoppers decide where to shop based on other factors besides how quickly they can get in and out of the store.

He said those who want thinly sliced ham may skip Amazon Go Grocery and walk two blocks away to the Kroger-owned QFC supermarket, which is about five times the size.

Still, Bishop said, it’s hard for the grocery industry to ignore Amazon, which has the cash and technology to experiment with groceries. “They’re not giving up,” he said of Amazon.

Source : Winnipeg Free Press

Gene Tests for Heart Disease Risk Have Limited Benefit

Genetic tests to predict a person’s risk of heart disease and heart attack have limited benefit over conventional testing.

This is the finding from scientists at Imperial College London, who devised a highly sophisticated test analysing thousands of so-called genetic variants linked to heart health.

The results of the test, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, revealed only modest improvement over the standard method doctors currently use to measure heart disease and heart attack risk – using factors such as cholesterol, blood pressure, smoking habits and presence of diabetes.

The scientists stressed the study doesn’t contradict previous findings that heart disease runs in families, or that a person’s genes may place them at higher risk of the condition. Rather, the findings suggest that, at present, genetic data adds only modestly to the information we currently gain using conventional testing. This may change in the future as our knowledge of genes affecting heart disease risk improves.

Dr Ioanna Tzoulaki, lead author of the study from Imperial’s School of Public Health, said: “Genetic tests to predict a person’s risk of developing a condition are becoming cheaper and cheaper, and will soon become part of routine patient care.

Therefore we needed to evaluate whether these tests can add information to our existing tools of predicting who is at high risk of developing heart disease. Our research suggests that for heart disease these tests do not add much to the information we can gather from assessing factors such as cholesterol levels and blood pressure.”

Heart disease is a leading cause of death worldwide and is responsible for around 64,000 deaths in the UK each year. The condition is caused by narrowing of the blood vessels supplying the heart due to the build-up of fatty substances, which then leads to heart attacks.

At the moment, in the UK when doctors want to assess a person’s risk of heart disease, they calculate a score called QRISK. This involves analysing factors such as age, sex, cholesterol levels, blood pressure, diabetes and whether a person smokes, to calculate risk of developing heart disease within the next 10 years. If the risk is calculated as above 10 per cent, a patient is recommended treatment such as statins to lower cholesterol.

The researchers behind the current study wanted to see if analysing a person’s genetic information could enhance the predictive power of the QRISK score, and a similar score used in the USA.

The team analysed clinical and genetic information from over 350,000 people included in the UK Biobank study. The individuals had no history of cardiovascular disease, and an average age of 55 years old.

The group were tracked for eight years, during which time any heart disease diagnoses or heart attacks were recorded (6,272 of these events occurred in this time frame).

The team then sifted through the genetic data for small DNA changes called single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). These occur when a single nucleotide (building block of DNA) is replaced with another. These changes may cause disease, and the study team used all known SNPs associated with heart disease risk – over one million in total.

The team found that when the genetic results were combined with a patient’s QRISK score, approximately 4% of individuals had a more accurate risk assessment compared to QRISK alone, although for some people the prediction was less accurate.

The researchers explained the genetic information was mainly from individuals with European ancestry aged 40-69, and further analyses are required to confirm the findings among people of different ages and ethnicities.

Dr Joshua Elliott, first author of the research explained: “Our study suggests that easy-to-collect information such as age, sex, blood pressure and cholesterol levels are still the most powerful tools we have for peering into the future and predicting your risk of heart disease and heart attack.”

Source: EurekAlert!

Variety and Consistency are Essential to Keep the Mind Healthy

For many adults, the mid-30’s is a busy time. There’s often career advancement, the start of a new family and associated responsibilities. It’s also a critical time for how we diversify our days in order to stay up to speed. A new study from the University of South Florida (USF) finds a key piece to maintaining cognitive function throughout adulthood is to engage in diverse activities regularly.

Researchers focused on seven common daily activities: paid work, time with children, chores, leisure, physical activity, volunteering, and giving informal help. They reviewed two sets of data from 732 people ranging between the ages of 34 and 84 that was collected by the National Survey of Daily Experiences. Every day for eight consecutive days, each participant was asked if they partook in those activities and scored on an activity diversity score that captures both the breadth (variety) and evenness (consistency) of activity participation. The same group was queried ten years later. The study published in the Journal of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences found those who increased activity diversity over the decade exhibited higher levels of cognitive functioning than those who maintained lower or decreased activity diversity.

Their cognitive functioning was assessed using the Brief Test of Adult Cognition by Telephone (BTACT) battery, which measures multiple dimensions of cognition, including working memory span, verbal fluency, attention, speed of processing, reasoning and verbal memory. Previous studies have examined how activity variety and frequency impact cognition. This is the first study to prove activity consistency is also essential, regardless of age.

“Results support the adage to ‘use it or lose it’ and may inform future interventions targeting the promotion of active lifestyles to include a wide variety of activities for their participants,” said Soomi Lee, PhD, assistant professor in the USF College of Behavioral and Community Sciences. “Findings suggest that active and engaged lifestyles with diverse and regular activities are essential for our cognitive health.”

Daily engagement results in greater accumulation of intellectual and social repertoires. Life experiences, such as educational attainment or leisure activities, can help compensate for progressing Alzheimer’s Disease. Conversely, a lack of activities or passive behavior, like binge watching TV, is associated with cognitive decline. While participants did keep their minds sharp, Lee says she did not find a correlation between activity diversity and episodic memory, which is known to decline with age. A previous study by Lee also shows that activity diversity is important for psychological well-being, especially for older adults. The current study shows that activity diversity matters for cognitive health across age groups and an active lifestyle is important for different domains of health.

Source: University of South Florida


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