Saturday, January 24, 2015

Tell General Mills: Stop hiding high fructose corn syrup | CREDO Action

Tell General Mills: Stop hiding high fructose corn syrup | CREDO Action: "General Mills’ Vanilla, Chocolate and Cinnamon Chex boxes all proudly display a label that should make many health-conscious consumers happy: “no high fructose corn syrup.”

The only problem: it’s not true.

These General Mills products all contain a super-concentrated sweetener that is made from high fructose corn syrup, and within the Big Ag industry is literally called “HFCS-90” or high fructose corn syrup-90.

But then the Corn Refiners Association changed the name to “fructose.”1 And now General Mills is not only disingenuously hiding their corn syrup behind this innocuous alias – the company is bragging that its products don’t contain any!

We deserve to know what we’re eating. Tell General Mills to stop hiding high fructose corn syrup.

The “fructose” label is especially nefarious, since fructose is a naturally occurring fruit sugar, and HFCS-90 is a highly concentrated, highly processed product that is molecularly different from the fructose you would eat in your apple."

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Monday, January 12, 2015

Gardening: Ditch the chemicals and go natural

Gardening: Ditch the chemicals and go natural: "It’s funny how things change. Or, rather, how our attitudes to things change. Take, for example, antibiotics, which only a few short decades ago were considered magic pills for the mildest of ailments, before scientists discovered that their over-use was leading to increased resistance, as well as to the destruction of important “good” bacteria in the human gut, with significant consequences for long-term human health. Cue the growing popularity of probiotics and homemade products such as kefir (a fermented milk drink) that help re-seed or re-inoculate the human gut with a mixture of beneficial live microorganisms."

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Saturday, January 03, 2015

Chinese demand for tiger wine and skins puts wild cats in peril | World news | The Guardian

Chinese demand for tiger wine and skins puts wild cats in peril | World news | The Guardian: "ver since establishing the farms, Chinese wildlife officials have been campaigning for international approval to lift the ban on tiger bone use, arguing that the country has a right to use its “domestic natural resources” as it sees fit, and that tiger bone wine – rice wine in which bones from the big cats have been soaking – is medically effective and part of Chinese culture. They contend that the trade could be regulated effectively to reduce the demand for wild tiger parts.

But even as the rest of the world disagrees, it appears that China has gone ahead anyway. Multiple probes by the EIA and International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) over the past decade, together with The Washington Post’s own investigation, show the tiger bone wine industry has boomed, with support from the SFA.

“After these farms started selling wine, and taxidermists started selling tiger pelts, it really stimulated waning demand from consumers,” said Grace Ge Gabriel of the IFAW.

Xiongshen alone says it houses more than 1,000 tigers – although fewer than 200 are available for tourists to view – and 500 bears, legally farmed to extract their bile for a different wine."

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How I stopped worrying and learned to love the exclamation mark

How I stopped worrying and learned to love the exclamation mark: "My initial resistance to the exclamation mark was down to an intense dislike of their use in journalism. An exclamation mark should only be employed within quotes, and only then when the journalist is sure it was uttered.
Otherwise, seeing an article end in an exclamation mark suggests that the writer has been unable to get the message across adequately in the many words that preceded it. It is, as F Scott Fitzgerald once said, “like laughing at your own joke”.
So, when the moment came to use that exclamation mark in a text, thumb hovering over the key, it felt like a slipping of standards, a crumbling of resistance. It was the breaking of the dam.
Since which, I have learned to love the exclamation mark, to accept it as another shift in the evolution of written communication, allowable in texts, mails, Twitter – but still not journalism. Never in journalism.
But the mass deployment of the exclamation mark in personal communication has fuelled a shift in punctuation, an upward inflection of sorts, one of the new work-arounds that attempts to convey in written communication what would be clear if it were spoken."

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