Just the facts. From the experts.
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Meet Sommer Collier from A Spicy Perspective

12/7/2013

Lately, we’ve been adding a little extra spice to our lives with regular visits to Sommer Collier’s award-winning blog: A Spicy Perspective.

Holidays: A is for Apple

12/4/2013

Did you know that apples are more than just a tasty snack? They are also a historically significant holiday decoration!

Food Expiration Dates – What Do They Mean?

11/19/2013

Confusion about food expiration dates can inadvertently cause unnecessary food waste or food safety issues; so we’ve compiled the definitions of some of the most common food expiration labels, according to the USDA. Tape the list on your refrigerator or cabinet for quick reference. A quick glance could benefit both your wallet and your health.

Do Your Kids Have the Snack Time Blues?

11/19/2013

Is your snack time less than inspired? Check out this video and several easy, delicious and nutrition-packed "Tasty Snack Trio" suggestions from Best Food Facts nutrition advisor Carolyn O'Neil, MS, RD.  

Trans Fats Moving Off the Menu

11/12/2013

Blamed as a key dietary culprit in causing heart disease, trans fats are getting kicked all the way to the curb. Best Food Facts Nutrition Advisor, Carolyn O’Neil, MS RD dishes up insight from nutrition experts on the issue of trans fats.

True? Or Not? "High Fructose Corn Syrup is a major cause of obesity in the United States."

An abundance of confusion has complicated the use of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) since it was introduced as an industrial sweetener - a substitute for sugar - in the 1960s. Some of the controversy derives from the dramatic increase in the prevalence of obesity in the U.S. (and in the rest of the world). The simultaneous occurrence of these two events is striking and it is tempting to relate one to the other.

True? Or Not? "We will experience a bacon shortage in 2013."

When the National Pig Association of the United Kingdom sent out a press release warning of a worldwide pork and bacon shortages in an effort to prepare consumers in the UK for higher pork prices, the story spread quickly on social media in the U.S. prompting dramatic media reports of an impending bacon shortage.

True? Or Not? "Elimination of farm subsidies will reduce obesity and associated health problems."

Many advocates argue that US Department of Agriculture (USDA) policies that establish farm prices for crops, provide subsidies to farmers and provide consumers with access to an abundant and affordable food supply are responsible for the increasing number of adults and children facing the challenges of obesity and diabetes. However, Julian M. Alston, with the University of California-Davis Department of Agriculture and Resource Economics, says his research shows that eliminating farm subsidies would do little to change obesity rates, noting that consumers do not necessarily change food purchase patterns based on cost and that advances in technology and efficiencies on the farm have more to do with the low cost of today’s food than USDA policies and programs.

FOOD FIGHT POLL: Halloween Candy

10/30/2013

Do you indulge in Halloween candy? Take our latest poll!

Inulin: Is This Fiber Source Too Much of a Good Thing?

10/29/2013

We received an inquiry from a Best Food Facts reader about “functional fibers” that are being added to foods. There are reports that inulin, a popular food additive, can cause gastrointestinal discomfort if over-ingested.

We spoke with Dr. Joanne Slavin, a professor in the Department of Food Science and Nutrition at the University of Minnesota, to find out more.

True? Or Not? "Small farms and increased consumer purchases of locally-produced food products better for the future of American agriculture and the environment."

Many consumers are nostalgic for the bucolic scenes associated with the small farms of generations past and have embraced farmers markets and other opportunities to buy their food from "local" producers. Consumers might be surprised to find that this approach may not provide the long-term benefits to agriculture or the environment as they believe.

 

True? Or Not? "Food grown and produced in the U.S. is as safe or safer than food grown outside the U.S."

With the increasing number of recalls in the news, many Americans are wondering if their food is safe. There is still a lot of room for improvement but overall, the U.S. food safety system works as well or better than most countries.

Foods produced and processed in the most industrially developed countries such as the United States, Canada, Australia/New Zealand and the European Union (EU) are similar in quality and safety, but food from developing nations varies widely.

 

Will Garcinia Cambogia Really Help Me Lose Weight?

10/24/2013

Recently, Best Food Facts received a question regarding whether celebrities are using garcinia cambogia to lose weight. We called Stephen Heymsfield, MD, the George A. Bray, Jr. Endowed Super Chair in Nutrition Professor, Pennington Biomedical Research Center, Louisiana State University System, to find out.

Are High-Carb Foods Fattening?

10/23/2013

With the rise of low- and no-carb diets, the word “carb” has taken on a negative connotation. Just as there is no one-size-fits-all diet there is also no one perfect food. A balanced diet includes a wide variety of foods consumed in moderation. But carbohydrates shouldn’t be considered to be “empty” calories. Carbohydrates can be rich sources of fiber such as those found in vegetables, whole grains, fruits and beans, all of which play a role in decreasing the risk of chronic disease. 

True? Or Not? "Organic food is better for your health than non-organic food."

For the average American consumer, the term "organic" has a positive connotation and the beneficial properties of organic foods may be misinterpreted or exaggeratedSurveys indicate many proponents of organic food production look beyond the final product to consider factors such as environmental impacts, worker safety, and economic considerations which are not related to organic production standards. U.S. consumers frequently have the choice between purchasing organic and conventional foods and make food purchasing decisions that reflect their values, concerns, and lifestyles.

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