Here are some of the best food stories we came across this week:
- False Claims of GMO Foods’ Benefits Exposed – In GMO Myths and Truths — a scientific review of health, safety and environmental claims of genetically modified foods — the researchers found that growing GMO crops actually increases use of pesticides, harms soil quality, disrupts ecosystems and reduces biodiversity. They also found that, when consumed, GMO foods can be toxic, allergenic and less nutritious than their natural, unmodified counterparts.
- Experts Determine Top 50 Healthiest Foods – A panel of health and nutrition experts selected by The Huffington Post have compiled a list of the healthiest 50 foods. Some are the usual suspects: Almonds, broccoli, cranberries, cherries, kale, kefir, ginger, salmon and pomegranates. But the list includes some surprises too: Dark chocolate, coffee, red wine (and it’s original red grapes), skim milk, tuna, eggs and water.
- A Primer on a Low Glycemic Diet – A study from Harvard explored the efficacy of a low glycemic diet, which forms the foundation of many popular weight loss programs like Sugar Busters, the Zone and the South Beach diet. The basic premise entails 40% of total calories from carbohydrates (ideally unprocessed and unrefined), 40% from fat and 20% from protein. The glycemic index measures the speed at which a food breaks down in the digestive system to form glucose.
- Drinking Coffee Reduces Colon Cancer Risk – The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition recently published a study from the National Cancer Institute that found coffee drinkers who had up to four cups of coffee every day (whether regular or decaf) lowered their risk of colon cancer by 15%, compared to individuals who didn’t drink any. Scientists also found that tea consumption didn’t impact colon cancer risk in any way.
- Wheat’s Evolution (and Decline) in Modern Diets – Dr. William Davis, the author of Wheat Belly: Lose the Wheat, Lose the Weight and Find Your Path Back to Health, gives a lecture on humanity’s historical relationship to wheat in this engaging video. He addresses the cultural, religious and dietary impact and symbolism of wheat over the last 10,000 years, then explains how modern agricultural practices have stripped the grain of much of its nutrition value.
Photo courtesy of Millions Against Monsanto.