Criminals watch your diet!

This story is irresistible to a woman who writes so often about the effects of diet on health. What I didn’t realise is that what you eat could also get you banged up! Dr John Bond, a researcher at the University of Leicester and scientific support officer at Northamptonshire Police, is the inventor of a revolutionary forensic fingerprint technique that will help put unhealthy criminals behind bars.

He claims that criminals who eat processed foods are more likely to be discovered by police because their fingerprint sweat corrodes metal – just shows you what fast food does to your stomach if just the sweat can eat away an external surface like that! Apparently the police already love consumers of processed foods as they tend to be leave better fingerprints for the police to identify.

It’s down to the fact that sweaty fingerprint marks made more of a corrosive impression on metal if they had a high salt content – and processed food, fish and chips and burgers tend to be high in salt as a preservative. The body needs to excrete excess salt, which comes out as sweat through the pores in our fingers, and so when you touch a surface it will be high in salt if you eat a lot of processed foods – the higher the salt, the better the corrosion of the metal.

Not sure whether I should be encouraging fast food diets in criminals, to aid their capture, or encourage them to switch to the Mediterranean diet!

Junk food surprise?

Something that is a constant amazement to me is how keen researchers are to prove what we already know – somebody must be giving them grants but in this case I strongly suspect it wasn’t McDonalds or Burger King. This particular study has taken place in Sweden at Linkoping University and made the amazing discovery that just one month of too much junk food and too little exercise can significantly harm the body.

I know we could all have told them that, but they put their volunteers on a diet where they ate fast food twice a day for 30 days and not surprisingly gained 14lb on average, with one volunteer putting on two stones in two weeks.

As a believer in a varied diet, I don’t have a problem with the occasional junk food meal, but how many people eat it twice a day every day? If you know anyone then pass on to them that the biggest initial problem, besides putting on weight, being constipated and prone to spots, all of which are enough to put most people off, then they are also prone to suffer damage to their livers as most of the Swedish study did. Varuna Aluvihare, a consultant hepatologist at King’s College Hospital in London, said that for him the most startling thing about the study is how fast it (liver damage) happens.

McDonalds sponsor school reports

February 7, 2008 by  
Filed under Childrens Health, featured, Food & Nutrition

Given the huge fuss about improving the diet of school children and weaning them off fast and junk food diets, there is disturbing news from the USA where McDonald’s have just paid $1,700 to produce the school reports for Seminole County, in Florida. What do they get out of it? The report cards feature a cover jacket with a coupon featuring their trademark Ronald McDonald. Apparently for ‘good grades and attendance’ (undefined), the coupon can be redeemed for a free Happy Meal.

Sounds a bit like bribery to me and certainly would appear to violate the Children’s Food and Beverage Advertising Initiative, which McDonald’s joined last year which unequivocally states that members are not allowed to advertise at schools and cannot place materials in editorial or entertainment content. It appears that McDonald’s have found a loophole because as the report cards are sent straight to the home they may not be easily classifiable as editorial or entertainment and the school board officials concerned call the report cards a ‘business partnership’ which assist with lack of funding in their school system.

Many parents are unhappy because parents who don’t want their children eating from McDonalds are put under pressure if they won’t take the coupon and the free Happy Meal. The frequent childhood complaint of ‘all my friends are going there’ is being heard and it is hard on parents to feel they are singling their child out of what is seen as a ‘reward’ for doing well at school.

There is certainly no doubt that the type of diet a child has definitely makes a difference to their school performance. A well balanced diet with plenty of fruit, vegetables and whole grains give a child the best chance of developing healthy both physically and mentally.

McDonald’s is no stranger to criticism about the nutritional value of its products and has hit back with high-level advertising and information campaigns scarce on nutritional qualities. McDonald’s defended its Happy Meals, citing that a child could choose a low calorie Happy Meal of Chicken McNuggets, apple dippers, and low fat milk. The combination may be low calorie, but it contains MSG, food colouring, and sodium benzoate.

They have added “healthy” choices to their menus, but who knows a child who goes for the healthy option? The ever popular burger may have traceable-source beef but the bun itself is not a healthy option as McDonald’s still bleaches all of its grains used to create the buns and effectively kills any goodness in the flour. Bleaching most bread creates a poison called alloxon, which has produced diabetes in lab animals so you may want to follow the example of Jack Nicholson in 5 Easy Pieces and tell them to ‘hold the bun.’

Of course an occasional burger will not cause a huge problem, but if you are concerned about what’s in McDonald’s food then you can check the ingredients by typing the words McDonalds ingredients into Google or any search engine and several links will come up to show you exactly what you might be eating.