Here are some of the best food stories we came across this week:
- Olympic Athletes’ Calorie Consumption Varies Widely – Turns out not all athletes eat alike, even at the Olympic level – and the differences aren’t simply down gender lines. Calorie consumption appears to be largely dictated by the sport itself, with competitors in endurance sports like swimming, cycling and marathons eating up to 8,000 calories a day, while at the other end of the spectrum fencers, wrestlers and light rowers might consume as little as 1,200 calories a day to meet weight requirements.
- Target Opening a Healthy In-Store Restaurant – At Target’s new store in Chicago, instead of the usual pizza, popcorn and macaroni and cheese offerings, there will be a Pret A Manger restaurant. The UK-based chain carries only daily made, fresh foods, including vegan salads, antibiotic-free meats, preservative-free foods and cage-free eggs. It will also carry fresh soups, sandwiches and freshly baked baguettes.
- Climate Change Influencing Salmon Evolution – Salmon DNA records stretching back over 30 years show that nature has increasingly selected for fish that migrate from the ocean earlier in the year. This is one of the first pieces of genetic evidence that climate change is driving the evolution of a species. A study conducted in Alaska and published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B concluded that climate change was actually affecting the population’s genetic diversity.
- USDA Pulls Meatless Monday Post After Beef Industry Complains – As part of its efforts to reduce the environmental impact of its cafeteria, the U.S. Department of Agriculture posted a suggestion on its internal newsletter encouraging employees to choose vegetarian items instead of meat on the first day of the week. The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association put out a press release condemning the statement, which the USDA then removed from its website along with an announcement that it does not support the “Meatless Mondays” movement.
- Willpower for Healthy Eating Highest at Start of the Week – Consumers are most likely to eat salads for lunch on Mondays and occasionally Tuesdays; they’re also most likely to begin a new exercise program, start a diet and quit smoking on a Monday. The most health-related internet searches occur that day also. In contrast, the biggest selling days for hamburgers and fries at lunchtime are on Fridays.
Photo courtesy of p_a_h.