Gadget: Manual Chopper

K&A Chopper (みじん切り器)

From Coarse to Fine – Number of Turns

The price is 980 yen (plus tax) in Japan.

Golden Syrup Orange Steamed Pudding


40 g reduced-fat margarine
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg
1 egg white
1-1/4 cups self-raising flour
pinch salt
1 tbsp finely grated orange rind
1/4 cup skim milk
1 cup golden syrup


  1. Beat margarine and sugar in small bowl with electric mixer until combined.
  2. Add egg and egg white, one at a time, beat until mixture is pale and fluffy.
  3. Stir in flour, salt, rind and milk.
  4. Lightly grease 6 x 3/4-cup ramekins.
  5. Line each ramekin with 2 tbsp golden syrup. Spoon batter into ramekins, cover tightly with foil.
  6. Place ramekins in large pan of boiling water (water should come halfway up sides of ramekins), cover pan with tight-fitting lid: simmer about 45 minutes.
  7. Turn puddings out onto serving plate. Top with candied orange as pictured, if desired.

Makes 6 servings.

Source: Simply Lite Food

Sugary Drinks Negatively Impact these Two Risk Factors for Heart Disease

There’s no sugarcoating it: Having too many sweet drinks may be linked to increased risk of cardiovascular disease in middle-aged and older adults, according to new research.

Drinking 12 ounces of sugary beverages more than once a day may lower “good” cholesterol and increase triglycerides, fat in the blood that can lead to heart disease.

“Reducing the number of or eliminating sugary drink consumption may be one strategy that could help people keep their triglyceride and good cholesterol at healthier levels,” lead study author Nicola McKeown said in a news release. McKeown is a nutrition epidemiologist at the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University in Boston.

Previous studies have shown added sugars increase heart disease risk. Beverages such as sodas, sports drinks and fruit-flavored drinks are the largest source of added sugar for Americans.

Researchers aimed to find out why and how these added sugars lead to heart disease. They hypothesized it could be a result of an unhealthy imbalance of cholesterol and triglyceride levels, a condition known as dyslipidemia that affects an estimated 40% to 50% of U.S. adults.

The observational study – published Wednesday in the Journal of the American Heart Association – examined medical data of nearly 6,000 people who were followed for an average of 12.5 years. Participants were classified into five groups according to how often they drank the different beverages, ranging from less than one serving per month to more than one serving per day.

The beverages were defined as: 12 ounces of sugary drinks, such as sodas, fruit-flavored drinks, sports drinks, and presweetened coffees and teas; 12 ounces of low-calorie sweetened beverages, including naturally and artificially sweetened “diet” sodas or other flavored drinks; or 8 ounces of 100% fruit juices, including orange, apple, grapefruit and other juices derived from whole fruits, with no added sugars.

Researchers found drinking more than 12 ounces per day of sugary beverages was associated with a 53% higher incidence of high triglycerides and a 98% higher incidence of low “good” cholesterol compared to those who drank less than 12 ounces per month.

Regularly drinking low-calorie sweetened beverages was not associated with increased dyslipidemia risk, nor was 100% fruit juice. However, researchers said more study is needed to back this finding.

“While our study didn’t find negative consequences on blood lipids from drinking low-calorie sweetened drinks, there may be health consequences of consuming these beverages on other risk factors,” McKeown said. “Water remains the preferred and healthiest beverage.”

Source: American Heart Association

Unscrambling the Egg Data: One a Day Looks OK

Go ahead and crack that egg. Eating one a day isn’t likely to increase your risk of heart disease, researchers say.

The three-decade study showed no association between moderate egg consumption and risk of heart disease. The report — led by a team at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health in Boston — should help reassure uneasy egg eaters.

“Recent studies reignited the debate on this controversial topic, but our study provides compelling evidence supporting the lack of an appreciable association between moderate egg consumption and cardiovascular disease,” first author Jean-Philippe Drouin-Chartier, a visiting scientist, said in a Harvard news release. He’s an assistant professor at Laval University in Quebec, Canada.

For the new study, the researchers analyzed data from more than 173,000 women and over 90,000 men in the United States who did not have heart disease, type 2 diabetes or cancer when initially assessed.

The study participants were followed for 32 years, during which their diets and other lifestyle habits were recorded.

The researchers also analyzed 28 studies with up to 1.7 million people. This meta-analysis supported the finding that moderate egg consumption is not associated with increased risk of heart disease in Americans and Europeans.

The investigators also found some evidence suggesting that moderate egg consumption may be associated with lower heart disease risk in Asian populations, but the finding may be affected by their overall dietary habits, according to the authors.

The results were published online in the BMJ.

While not essential, moderate egg consumption can be part of a healthy diet, said study co-author Shilpa Bhupathiraju, a research scientist in the Harvard Chan department of nutrition and an associate epidemiologist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.

“There is a range of other foods that can be included in a healthy breakfast, such as whole grain toasts, plain yogurt and fruits,” Bhupathiraju said.

The link between eggs and heart disease risk has been hotly debated in recent decades. In the past 12 months, three published studies have reported conflicting findings.

One study, published recently in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, also found no heart harms tied to moderate egg consumption.

This new study updates a 1999 one that likewise found no connection between eggs and heart disease risk.

Source: American Heart Association

Sleepy Seniors Have Higher Health Risks

Older people who experience daytime sleepiness may be at risk of developing new medical conditions, including diabetes, cancer and high blood pressure, according to a preliminary study released today that will be presented at the American Academy of Neurology’s 72nd Annual Meeting in Toronto, Canada, April 25 to May 1, 2020.

The condition called hypersomnolence is defined as excessive daytime sleepiness even after having seven or more hours of sleep. It can be debilitating for some people, affecting the way that they perform at work and in other daily activities.

“Paying attention to sleepiness in older adults could help doctors predict and prevent future medical conditions,” said study author Maurice M. Ohayon, M.D., Ph.D., DSc, of Stanford University in Stanford, Calif., and a member of the American Academy of Neurology. “Older adults and their family members may want to take a closer look at sleeping habits to understand the potential risk for developing a more serious medical condition.”

The study involved 10,930 people; 34% of participants were 65 years or older.

Researchers interviewed participants over the phone two times, three years apart. In the first interview, 23% of people over 65 met the criteria for excessive sleepiness. In the second interview, 24% reported excessive sleepiness. Of those, 41% said the sleepiness was a chronic problem.

The study found that people who reported sleepiness in the first phone interview had a 2.3 times greater risk of developing diabetes or high blood pressure three years later than those who did not experience sleepiness. They were also twice as likely to develop cancer. Of the 840 people who reported sleepiness at the first interview, 52 people, or 6.2%, developed diabetes compared to 74 people, or 2.9% of those who were never sleepy during the day. Also, of the 840 people who reported sleepiness, 20 people, or 2.4%, developed cancer compared to 21 people, or 0.8% of those who were never sleepy during the day.

The results remained the same after researchers adjusted for other factors that could affect daytime sleepiness, such as gender and sleep apnea.

People who reported daytime sleepiness during both interviews had a 2.5 times greater risk of developing heart disease.

People who reported sleepiness only in the second interview were 50% more likely to also have diseases of the musculoskeletal system and connective tissue, such as arthritis, tendinitis and lupus, than those who did not have daytime sleepiness.

A limitation of the study was that it relied on participants’ memories, rather than monitoring their sleep length and quality and daytime sleepiness in a sleep clinic.

Source: American Academy of Neurology

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