Experimental Biology: Where Science Happens

In a textbook or dictionary, science is generally described as being about experiments and observations. But scientists know better than that. They know that science is just as much about sharing data, comparing data, having arguments about data, coming up with theories, and shooting theories down. It’s there that the road to scientific consensus lies and that holds true, especially, in nutrition science. No, scientific consensus in nutritionContinue reading “Experimental Biology: Where Science Happens”

‘The Diet Fix’: How to fix your broken diet… with chocolate

Bariatric physician Dr. Yoni Freedhoff felt so compelled to write a book on dieting that, on a momentous day in 2009, he holed himself up in a 500-square-foot shack in northern Ontario with no Internet, no cable television, and no cell phone reception. Forty-eight hours later he’d written 30,000 words of which he used to craftContinue reading “‘The Diet Fix’: How to fix your broken diet… with chocolate”

A reprisal from the breakfast club

Breakfast is still the most important meal of the day. Excuse me if I’m a little biased. Apparently, I’m not alone. I like to eat breakfast. I’ve long told everyone they should eat breakfast. And I make sure my children eat breakfast every day, often cooking up their favorite sorts of breakfast meals on theContinue reading “A reprisal from the breakfast club”

In defense of better junk food

Not too long ago, I had the luck of joining a small group of food scientists in touring P.F. Chang’s headquarters, in Scottsdale, Ariz. We were led through a maze of test kitchens and that’s where I came to appreciate how the restaurant company decides what ends up on their menus. Our tour guide wasContinue reading “In defense of better junk food”

Review: For God, Country, & Coca-Cola (revised 3rd Edition)

When Mark Pendergrast was a boy, his mother refused to allow Coca-Cola in the house. She told him it would rot his teeth, disturb his sleep, and pollute his body with chemicals. Her warnings backfired, however, only making “something mysterious and enticing about the dark, bubbly liquid.” He’d go on to sneak a sip ofContinue reading “Review: For God, Country, & Coca-Cola (revised 3rd Edition)”

Want to stick it to Monsanto? March for public investment and open data

A while back, I interviewed a plant geneticist who expressed extreme frustration over the measly funds that were available for research into biotechnology. The scientist’s own research was quite exciting in and of itself because of its potential to profoundly improve current agricultural problems across the world by improving yield, while reducing fertilizer overuse. Intrigued,Continue reading “Want to stick it to Monsanto? March for public investment and open data”

Is it time to stop blaming insulin for “fat storage”?

Crack open any physiology textbook and chances are you’ll learn that after eating any normal meal, the release of insulin from the pancreas then signals the shutdown of the release of fatty acids from adipose (body fat) tissue and the increase of fatty acid uptake. Because of this well-known role of insulin, one of theContinue reading “Is it time to stop blaming insulin for “fat storage”?”

When my former girlfriend told me she was dying

  “It’s too late, David. I’m dying,” she told me. “No. No. That’s impossible,” I said. “You’re only 24.” Less than 0.1 percent of all breast cancers occurred in women under 30 years of age from 1975 to 2000, according to the National Cancer Institute. In comparison to older women, those young women who wereContinue reading “When my former girlfriend told me she was dying”

How lutein and zeaxanthin earned the limelight

When light enters the human eye it passes through the cornea, pupil, and lens to focus on an area of light-sensitive tissue called the retina. Near the center of the retina of the eye is a light yellow spot called the macula. It’s here where lutein and zeaxanthin concentrate to form macular pigment to filter out excessContinue reading “How lutein and zeaxanthin earned the limelight”

Roundup of EB2013 highlights from bloggers (and others)

Now that a week of science at Experimental Biology 2013 has ended, I’ve taken a look around to see what others found that I may have missed while I was in Boston. Again, as mentioned in my preview of the conference, the American Society for Nutrition’s Scientific Sessions alone had more than 1,900 abstracts and dozens ofContinue reading “Roundup of EB2013 highlights from bloggers (and others)”