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Chicken Farms Try Oregano as Antibiotic Substitute

Chicken Farms Try Oregano as Antibiotic Substitute | Bon Vivant | Scoop.it
Chicken farms including Bell & Evans in Pennsylvania are using oregano-based products as substitutes for antibiotics, but research on their effectiveness is scant and many remain skeptical.
Alice Ruxton Abler's insight:

Dr. Harry G. Preuss, a professor of physiology and biology at the Georgetown University Medical Center, studied the effectiveness of oregano oil on 18 mice infected with staph bacteria. Six mice were given oregano oil, and half survived for the full 30 days of the treatment. Six received carvacrol, regarded by many experts to be the antibacterial component in oregano, in olive oil, and none of them survived longer than 21 days. Six other mice received only olive oil and died within three days.

The study, which was underwritten by a company, North American Herb and Spice, and presented at a meeting of the American College of Nutrition in 2001, was repeated and all those findings were corroborated, Dr. Preuss said.

Dr. Preuss said he had applied to the National Institutes of Health for financing of a larger study, with no luck so far. “This is really promising, particularly when you consider that we are facing a crisis in our hospitals and health systems with the increasing resistance to antibiotics,” he said.

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Enjoying the journey and finding happiness along the way without losing sight of the destination
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Welcome To World Science U, Where Anyone Can Learn Einstein Online ~ Fast Company

Welcome To World Science U, Where Anyone Can Learn Einstein Online ~ Fast Company | Bon Vivant | Scoop.it

by Ariel Schwartz

 

"At a time when companies and universities that run massive open online courses arestruggling to prove their value, Columbia University professor and physicist Brian Greene thinks he has a new and potentially more effective way to teach students online: World Science U, a science education platform that offers everything from two-minute educational videos to full-fledged university-level classes.

 

"Greene knows a little something about creating science content that's understandable to the masses. In addition to his teaching at Columbia, he is the co-founder of the annual World Science Festival, a host of Nova science documentaries, and author of a number of popular books that explain abstract physics theories to average readers. Instead of using the Internet as a new delivery vehicle for old-fashioned teaching (as many other MOOCs do), Greene explains that his new platform "turns abstract ideas into interactives that people can play with."


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The Unintended (and Deadly) Consequences of Living in the Industrialized World

The Unintended (and Deadly) Consequences of Living in the Industrialized World | Bon Vivant | Scoop.it
Scientists believe dirt could explain why some of the wealthiest countries suffer from afflictions rarely seen in less-developed nations
Alice Ruxton Abler's insight:

The idea that dirt, or the lack of it, might play a role in autoimmune disease and allergy gained support along another border. In the late 1980s, Erika von Mutius was studying asthma in and around Munich. At the time, researchers thought air pollution was the cause. But after years of work, the young German researcher couldn’t clearly link Munich’s pollution and respiratory disease.

On November 9, 1989, an unusual opportunity came along: The Berlin Wall fell. For the first time since the 1940s, West Germans could conduct research in the East. Von Mutius, of Ludwig-Maximilians University Munich, seized the opportunity, expanding her study to include Leipzig, a city of 520,000 deep in East Germany.

The countryside around Leipzig was home to polluting chemical plants and was pocked with open-pit coal mines; many residents heated their apartments with coal-burning ovens. It was a perfect experiment: Two groups of children with similar genetic backgrounds, divided by the Iron Curtain into dramatically different environments. If air pollution caused asthma, Leipzig’s kids should be off the charts.

Working with local doctors, von Mutius studied hundreds of East German schoolchildren. “The results were a complete surprise,” von Mutius says. “In fact, at first we thought we should re-enter the data.” Young Leipzigers had slightly lower rates of asthma than their Bavarian counterparts—and dramatically less hay fever, a pollen allergy.

Puzzling over her results, von Mutius came across a paper by David Strachan, a British physician who had examined the medical records of 17,000 British children for clues to what caused allergies later in life. Strachan found that kids with a lot of older brothers and sisters had lower rates of hay fever and eczema, probably because the siblings brought home colds, flus and other germs.

After learning of Strachan’s study, von Mutius wondered whether air pollution might somehow protect East Germans from respiratory allergies.

Soon, studies from around the world showed similarly surprising results. But it was germ-laden dirt that seemed to matter, not air pollution. The children of full-time farmers in rural Switzerland and Bavaria, for example, had far fewer allergies than their non-farming peers. And a study following more than 1,000 babies in Arizona showed that, unless parents also had asthma, living in houses with dogs reduced the chances of wheezing and allergies later in life. Researchers proposed that the more microbial agents that children are exposed to early in life, the less likely they are to develop allergies and autoimmune diseases later on. Studies also showed that baby mice kept in sterile environments were more likely to face autoimmune disease, seeming to back what came to be called the “hygiene hypothesis.”

“It was so unexpected,” says von Mutius, who now believes air pollution was a red herring. Instead, East German children may have benefited from time spent in daycare.

Think about it this way: At birth, our immune cells make up an aggressive army with no sense of who its enemies are. But the more bad guys the immune system is exposed to during life’s early years, the more discerning it gets. “The immune system is programmed within the first two years of life,” says Knip. “With less early infection, the immune system has too little to do, so it starts looking for other targets.”

Sometimes the immune system overreacts to things it should simply ignore, like cat dander, eggs, peanuts or pollen. Those are allergies. And sometimes the immune system turns on the body itself, attacking the cells we need to produce insulin (Type 1 diabetes) or hair follicles (alopecia) or even targeting the central nervous system (multiple sclerosis). Those are autoimmune disorders.

Both appear to be mostly modern phenomena. A century ago, more people lived on farms or in the countryside. Antibiotics hadn’t been invented yet. Families were larger, and children spent more time outside. Water came straight from wells, lakes and rivers. Kids running barefoot picked up para­sites like hookworms. All these circumstances gave young immune systems a workout, keeping allergy and autoimmune diseases at bay.

In places where living conditions resemble this “pre-hygiene” past—rural parts of Africa, South America and Asia—the disorders remain uncommon. It can be tempting to dismiss the differences as genetic. But disease rates in the industrialized world have risen too fast, up to 3 or 4 percent a year in recent decades, to be explained by evolutionary changes in DNA. “You can see quite clearly in a pre-hygiene situation you don’t see allergic disease,” says Thomas Platts-Mills, an allergy specialist at the University of Virginia. “Move to a hygiene society, and it does not matter your race or ethnicity—allergy rises.”

These findings don’t mean that people should eschew basic hygiene. Its benefits are clear: In the past 60 years or so, our overall life expectancy has continued to rise. The trick for scientists is to determine exactly which early life exposures to germs might matter and identify the biology behind their potentially protective effect.




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Food Politics » Predictions for 2013 in food politics

Food Politics » Predictions for 2013 in food politics | Bon Vivant | Scoop.it

What's ahead for 2013? Approval of genetically modified salmon? GM labelling? Food safety? Menu labelling rules? Marion Nestle gives her annual predictions—and she has usually been spot on in years past. Here's her list for 2013.

Alice Ruxton Abler's insight:

Food politics predictions from Marion Nestle—From 1986-88, she was senior nutrition policy advisor in the Department of Health and Human Services and managing editor of the 1988 Surgeon General’s Report on Nutrition and Health. She has been a member of the FDA Food Advisory Committee and Science Board, the USDA/DHHS Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee, and American Cancer Society committees that issue dietary guidelines for cancer prevention. Her research focuses on how science and society influence dietary advice and practice.

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Alice Ruxton Abler's curator insight, January 22, 2013 9:22 AM

Food politics predictions from Marion Nestle—From 1986-88, she was senior nutrition policy advisor in the Department of Health and Human Services and managing editor of the 1988 Surgeon General’s Report on Nutrition and Health. She has been a member of the FDA Food Advisory Committee and Science Board, the USDA/DHHS Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee, and American Cancer Society committees that issue dietary guidelines for cancer prevention. Her research focuses on how science and society influence dietary advice and practice.

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Top 10 Italian castles turned into hotels

Top 10 Italian castles turned into hotels | Bon Vivant | Scoop.it
The following list includes castles and historic buildings, which have all been beautifully restored and renovated into hotels, while retaining all the features of their original medieval or Renaissance architecture.
Alice Ruxton Abler's insight:

Whether you're planning an actual vacation or just want to enjoy a virtual vacation, here are some pictures and description to get the mind wandering . . .

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'Comfort Dogs' Help Those Grieving in Newtown

'Comfort Dogs' Help Those Grieving in Newtown | Bon Vivant | Scoop.it
Golden retrievers are helping children and adults deal with the pain of the school tragedy
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"At a high school school today the reaction was overwhelming," says Johnston, who hears the tales from her bevy of handlers. "Dogs have the amazing ability to zero in on the person in front of them that has the greatest need. They can have six or seven people sitting there and they go to the one who has the loss. The dogs know; it's amazing to watch." 

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Gina Stepp's comment, December 23, 2012 6:56 PM
Love seeing them using this. Not just a nice idea, but an evidence-based therapy. http://themompsych.com/2012/11/13/pets-more-than-mans-best-friend/
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Mislabeled Foods Find Their Way to Diners’ Tables—Sounds Fishy To Me

Mislabeled Foods Find Their Way to Diners’ Tables—Sounds Fishy To Me | Bon Vivant | Scoop.it
Using genetic testing, an ocean conservation group found that nearly 40 percent of the seafood from 81 grocery stores and restaurants was not what the establishment claimed it was.
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Using genetic testing, the group found tilapia and tilefish posing as red snapper. Farmed salmon was sold as wild. Escolar, which can also legally be called oil fish, was disguised as white tuna, which is an unofficial nickname for albacore tuna.

Every one of 16 sushi bars investigated sold the researchers mislabeled fish. In all, 39 percent of the seafood from 81 grocery stores and restaurants was not what the establishment claimed it was.

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Dan Buettner: How to live to be 100+ | Video on TED.com

TED Talks To find the path to long life and health, Dan Buettner and team study the world's "Blue Zones," communities whose elders live with vim and vigor to record-setting age.
Alice Ruxton Abler's insight:

Observations from populations around the world where longevity is common include moderate consumption of mostly plant-based diets, meat and dairy from grass-fed animals, a weekly day of rest, a sense of purpose and a strong sense of community. Definitely worth watching.

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2012 First Place Winner - Los Angeles | The ReUse People

2012 First Place Winner - Los Angeles | The ReUse People | Bon Vivant | Scoop.it

Salvaged and reused materials can add so much to a project—and take so much off the bottom line. Here's a prize-winning project that used such materials to create a well-loved space full of character. Hoping this may inspire others to stretch their imaginations and try something similar. 

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At Your Convenience: A Short History of Convenience Foods

At Your Convenience: A Short History of Convenience Foods | Bon Vivant | Scoop.it

Food and nutrition. In concept it seems straightforward enough. But the last century saw a revolution in foods and consumption that has taken its toll on our tastebuds as well as our waistlines and our overall health. After several generations of variations on this theme, however, we are seeing the effects of eating foods that are so far removed from their original state. Not only are many diseases linked to poor diet—from certain cancers to diabetes to heart disease—but obesity affects an unprecedented segment of the Western population.

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‘Our Global Kitchen,’ at American Museum of Natural History

‘Our Global Kitchen,’ at American Museum of Natural History | Bon Vivant | Scoop.it
“Our Global Kitchen,” at the American Museum of Natural History, is a show about how cultures transform nature for food, and how, in recent years, those transformations may have gone awry.
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Nathan Myhrvold: How a Geek Grills a Burger – MensJournal.com

Nathan Myhrvold: How a Geek Grills a Burger – MensJournal.com | Bon Vivant | Scoop.it
Since cashing out of Microsoft, software genius Nathan Myhrvold has lived a nerd fantasy – digging up T. rexes, dabbling in Formula One, and creating a cooking bible only a mad scientist could love.

 

Whatever the case, for one evening in Seattle, Myhrvold has an audience oohing and aahing at his wacky creations. A fake quail egg made of passion fruit. A zebra-striped omelet. Creamed spinach with chlorophyll butter. Six hours of eating in all, a kind of endless parade of novelty and exotica. Wine flows, cheeks go ruddy, and laughter, for a while, overtakes the hum of machines in the background. Everyone is jovial, and perhaps no one more so than Myhrvold. A bit ruddy himself, he bounces from table to table, answering any questions posed by the CEO of Viking stoves or Pierre Hermé, the famed French pastry chef, explaining the vacuum-infused vegetables or the cocoa seaweed or the consommé that requires the meat to be juiced using "a hydraulic press that will squeeze with 120 tons – and that gets it real flat!"
"He just wants to have fun," whispers the drunken wife of a top food critic.

 

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'Smitten Kitchen' Takes The Fuss Out Of Cooking : NPR

Blogger and now cookbook author Deb Perelman insists you don't need a big or gourmet kitchen to make good food.
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Vetsch Architektur

Vetsch Architektur | Bon Vivant | Scoop.it

Disillusioned with boxy traditional houses placed on top of the ground? Looking for ideas that reject boring square rooms and angled corners? So was architect Peter Vetsch of Dietikon, Switzerland. He creates dwellings that flow like undulating sculptures, not to live under or in the ground, but with it, says Vetsch.

 

The key element in his “earth house” construction is an imaginative use of non-toxic ferro-cement because of its high strength and durability at low cost. A fine aggregate cement mix is applied over a wire mesh and rebar structure, either by hand, trowel or a high volume cement sprayer, leaving little finishing save for cosmetic effect or critical waterproofing. With the shell completed, dwellings are covered with a deep insulating blanket of earth that covers the undulating roof, making for a very quiet, draft-free, energy-efficient home. Energy saving in a typical earth home is up to 50 per cent.

 

Of course, the structure is protected from at all times from precipitation, wind and temperature variations. Cozy and homey, these homes give a sense of privacy and protection that the inhabitants seem to love. Definitely worth a look.

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Glendale Approves Disney's Grand Central Air Terminal Renovation Plan

Glendale Approves Disney's Grand Central Air Terminal Renovation Plan | Bon Vivant | Scoop.it
Alice Ruxton Abler's insight:

The Grand Central Air Terminal, the elegant but long-neglected centerpiece of Glendale’s role in aviation history, is finally going to get the restoration it deserves. Glendale’s Historic Preservation Commission voted unanimously to approve Disney’s plan for the restoration of Grand Central, which includes extensive structural stabilization and seismic upgrades, restoration of the exterior and rehabilitation of significant interior spaces so the building can be adaptively reused as a visitor center, offices and event space for the surrounding Disney Grand Central Creative Complex. According to the 2000 agreement between Glendale and Disney (pdf link), limited public access is required, probably through a reservation system. There will be a media wall and interpretive displays illuminating the history of Grand Centra

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Five Common Historical Misconceptions Explained

Five Common Historical Misconceptions Explained | Bon Vivant | Scoop.it
Did Viking helmets have horns? Was Napoleon that short? Was the Roman Vomitorium real?
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From the Smithsonian: This entertaining and informative video sets the viewer straight on five common misconceptions. Columbus, Lady Godiva, Napoleon, ancient Roman traditions, Vikings . . . all are addressed in a little under four minutes!

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Architects and Chefs Team Up To Build Fairytale Gingerbread Castles

Alice Ruxton Abler's insight:

Benefiting the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) Northwest Chapter, the 20th Annual competition paired local Seattle architects with chefs to create magical, edible worlds based on the theme Once Upon A Time. Although we strongly recommend that one refrain from ingesting the sugar-overload-inducing creations, the fairytale gingerbread village is worth a virtual look.
 


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Chicken Farms Try Oregano as Antibiotic Substitute

Chicken Farms Try Oregano as Antibiotic Substitute | Bon Vivant | Scoop.it
Chicken farms including Bell & Evans in Pennsylvania are using oregano-based products as substitutes for antibiotics, but research on their effectiveness is scant and many remain skeptical.
Alice Ruxton Abler's insight:

Dr. Harry G. Preuss, a professor of physiology and biology at the Georgetown University Medical Center, studied the effectiveness of oregano oil on 18 mice infected with staph bacteria. Six mice were given oregano oil, and half survived for the full 30 days of the treatment. Six received carvacrol, regarded by many experts to be the antibacterial component in oregano, in olive oil, and none of them survived longer than 21 days. Six other mice received only olive oil and died within three days.

The study, which was underwritten by a company, North American Herb and Spice, and presented at a meeting of the American College of Nutrition in 2001, was repeated and all those findings were corroborated, Dr. Preuss said.

Dr. Preuss said he had applied to the National Institutes of Health for financing of a larger study, with no luck so far. “This is really promising, particularly when you consider that we are facing a crisis in our hospitals and health systems with the increasing resistance to antibiotics,” he said.

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Never Built: Los Angeles

Never Built: Los Angeles explores the “what if” Los Angeles and dares the city to dream big again.
Alice Ruxton Abler's insight:

The exhibition will include buildings from legends like Frank Lloyd Wright, John Lautner, Rudolph Schindler, Frank Gehry and Thom Mayne, as well as master plans, parks, amusements parks and even transportation proposals like subways, monorails, and aerial transport. All could have transformed both the physical reality and the collective perception of the city. The fascinating stories and mesmerizing images surrounding these projects shed light on a reluctant city whose institutions and infrastructure have often undermined inventive, challenging urban schemes from some of the world's greatest architects, engineers and planners. Never Built sets the stage for a renewed interest in visionary projects in Los Angeles and dares the city to dream again. 

 

During two years of research we have unearthed countless untold stories and hundreds of beautiful yet buried images. We have completed the exhibition book, published by Metropolis Books, and worked with one of the nation's most celebrated designers—Clive Wilkinson Architects— to conceive of a show worthy of the topic. The entire museum space will become an alternative version of Los Angeles, with an amazing floor map of the city as a guide.

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Rain gardens capture water before it becomes urban runoff

Rain gardens capture water before it becomes urban runoff | Bon Vivant | Scoop.it
Watching water stream under parked cars and through the gutters every time it rained made Alice Abler cringe.
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On a recent morning Abler stood in her yard and showed off the triangular garden in front of her three-stall barn. She has added a moat made from a salvaged wooden gate and several ornamental features, including a white stone duck and a watering tray where mourning doves come to drink.

 
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Brazil mourns death of architect Niemeyer, the man who built its capital

Brazil mourns death of architect Niemeyer, the man who built its capital | Bon Vivant | Scoop.it
BRASILIA, Brazil — Brazil on Thursday mourned the death of Oscar Niemeyer, the groundbreaking architect who designed Brazil’s futuristic capital and much of the United Nations complex.

 

Niemeyer, 104, died Wednesday night in Rio de Janeiro, the seaside city where he was born and where his remains will be buried after he is honored with a service in Brasilia at the presidential palace he designed.

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The Death of Farmbrain —A Glimpse of Our Grains' Roots

The Death of Farmbrain —A Glimpse of Our Grains' Roots | Bon Vivant | Scoop.it
These days, everyone seems to enjoy tending chickens and eating local. But lifestyles are rarely ways of life, and the grain that goes into our daily bread is still easiest to obtain from giant operations.
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American Raw Milk Cheeses - United States - | Slow Food Presidia | Slow Food Foundation for Biodiversity

American Raw Milk Cheeses - United States - | Slow Food Presidia | Slow Food Foundation for Biodiversity | Bon Vivant | Scoop.it

Beginning in the 17th century, English and Dutch immigrants and later German and Italian arrivals brought their cheesemaking skills to the New World. They produced American cheeses by making raw milk versions of traditional European cheeses.

 

In the United States, the sale of raw milk cheeses that are aged less than 60 days is illegal. Due to the lack of a regional identity, the difficulties in collaboration between different producers (they may be hundreds of miles apart), and uncertain and ever changing health and food safety regulations, establishing production standards for American raw milk cheese has been extremely challenging.

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The Benefits of Occasional Fasting – MensJournal.com

The Benefits of Occasional Fasting – MensJournal.com | Bon Vivant | Scoop.it
How intermittent fasting became the hottest way to lose weight, gain definition, and possibly live longer.
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From the Philippines to Italy: A delegate's experience at the Salone del Gusto and Terra Madre market… | Food For Thought | Slow Food International - Good, Clean and Fair food.

Rushing through all the trappings of modern life, we forget how rich and vivid food tastes like. Everything is fast, often cheap, even easy. But food is so much more than just the food we gobble up. It can be an entire culture and whatever we chose to consume, spells the life or death of animal breeds, seed varieties, or even a small farm or community.

 

Slow Food is a non-profit, eco-gastronomic member-supported organization that was founded in 1989 to counteract fast food and fast life, the disappearance of local food traditions and people‚ where it comes from, how it tastes and how our food...

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International Culinary Center | Classic Culinary Arts with a Farm-to-Table Concentration


Great food begins beyond the four walls of a kitchen. It begins in fields and pastures, the sea, vineyards, and markets. As a chef of the 21st century, you need to know more than culinary technique and kitchen management. You must also understand and personally experience the whole ecosystem of food: how food is grown and raised and what conditions create the best possible ingredients and flavors.

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