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Microplastics in tea

There’s Trouble Brewing with Microplastics in Tea

By Matthew Kadey, MS, RD | May 1, 2020 |

In recent years, plenty of research has shown that a daily tea habit can have some steep health benefits. But if you dunk tea bags in steamy water, you may be drinking microplastics with your brew, say researchers at Quebec’s McGill University. They found that steeping tea bags made with plastic (yes, surprise, many bags are made from plastics like polyethylene terephthalate) at a brewing temperature of 203 degrees Fahrenheit released 11.6 billion microplastics and 3.1 billion nanoplastics into a single cup of tea.

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You Should Be Chicken to Wash Chicken

By Matthew Kadey, MS, RD | January 8, 2020 |

Many home cooks believe you need to wash poultry, but an observational study from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) found that 60% of people who rinsed raw chicken before cooking had potentially harmful bacteria left in their sinks afterward, and 14% had bacteria lingering in the sink even after cleaning it. Perhaps even more worrisome: More than 26% of study participants transferred bacteria from their cleaned bird to nearby lettuce. The USDA says the best practice is not to wash poultry prior to cooking, but instead to make sure you cook the meat to an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit, which will knock out dangerous bugs.

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High-Volume, High-Intensity Exercise Is Safe for Men

By Shirley Archer, JD, MA | October 15, 2019 |

No need for concern about increased death risk from heart disease among experienced middle-aged exercisers who engage in high-intensity activity, at least if they’re male. Findings from a 10-year study of 21,758 generally healthy, very active men—like marathon runners, cyclists and swimmers—showed that even for those with higher coronary-artery calcium levels, athletic pursuits did not elevate risk of death.

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Social Media Influencers Give Inaccurate Health Advice

By Shirley Archer, JD, MA | September 23, 2019 |

Have you been frustrated by bad health and fitness advice doled out by social media influencers? You’re not alone, and if you sense that much of the popular online health information is wrong, you’re right! A recent study of key U.K. social media influencers’ weight management blogs—presented at the European Congress on Obesity in Glasgow, Scotland, in April 2019—showed that most influencers were not reliable weight management resources.

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Pesticides and Produce

By Matthew Kadey, MS, RD | September 13, 2019 |

The eco-minded nonprofit Environ?¡mental Working Group recently released this year’s update to its popular Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce™. Their Dirty Dozen™ list ranks conventionally grown fruits and vegetables that, according to their analysis of available data, tend to contain the highest concentration of pesticides and/or the greatest number of different pesticides. For instance, more than 90% of kale samples had two or more pesticide residues.

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Ouch! What Causes Muscle Cramps?

By Len Kravitz, PhD | September 11, 2019 |

Muscle cramps can stop athletes in their tracks. Although they usually self-extinguish within seconds or minutes, the abrupt, harsh, involuntary muscle contractions can cause mild-to-severe agony and immobility, often accompanied by knotting of the affected muscle (Minetto et al. 2013). And cramps are common; 50%–60% of healthy people suffer muscle cramps during exercise, sleep or pregnancy or after vigorous physical exertion (Giuriato et al. 2018).

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