Nutrition: January 2007 Archives

Cauliflower Gene Eyed as Nutrition Booster

cauliflowerWashington - Can a gene from an orange cauliflower found three decades ago be the key to making food crops more nutritious?

Quite possibly, according to Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientist Li Li. She's using cauliflower to identify genes and define molecular mechanisms that regulate nutrients in plant-based foods.

Li, a molecular biologist at the ARS U.S. Plant, Soil and Nutrition Laboratory (PSNL) in Ithaca, N.Y., is making significant headway using this gene--dubbed "Or" for the color orange--to induce high levels of beta-carotene in food crops. She and colleagues at Cornell University isolated the gene last year.

nestle ZURICH (AFX) - Nestle SA said it aims for 10 pct annual organic growth in its nutrition segment while also seeking acquisitions, citing Novartis AG's Gerber unit as a potential target.

'We are aiming for 10 pct organic growth in the nutrition business,' a spokesman for the Swiss food giant said.

He added that Nestle was still seeking acquisitions and that the group might well be interested in Novartis (nyse: NVS)' Gerber unit, should the pharma group put Gerber up for sale.

soft drinksNutrition studies of beverages funded solely by industry are four to eight times more likely to report favourable conclusions for the sponsors than studies with no industry funding, say researchers from the US.

The results, published on-line in the journal Public Library of Science – Medicine, are based on a review of 206 review and research articles that focussed on studies using soft drinks, fruit juices, and milk with health-related outcomes. 

“The main finding of this study is that scientific articles about commonly consumed beverages funded entirely by industry were approximately four to eight times more likely to be favourable to the financial interests of the sponsors than articles without industry-related funding,” wrote lead author Lenard Lesser from the Children 's Hospital, Boston.

EUFood industry and consumer groups are poles apart over the question of mandatory nutrition labelling, according to the results of a public consultation conducted last year, with government opinion somewhere between the two.

Nutrition labelling for the bloc is governed by the Council Directive 90/496/EC, and a subsequent amendment in 2003. In November 2004 the EC published an impact assessment on the topic conducted by European Advisory Services on the mandatory nutrition labelling for pre-packaged food products.

The findings of the consultation industry are in line with those of EAS: while most consumer and health NGOs said they were in favour of a mandatory approach, the food industry continues to press for a voluntary approach.

American Heart AssociationDALLAS, Texas (AP) -- With an eye on Americans who spend too much time sitting behind computer screens and not enough time getting exercise, the American Heart Association is pitching fitness with an online nutrition tracker.

The group hopes its new free Start! program will inspire Americans to follow through on those resolutions to get in shape. With its online fitness and nutrition tracker, participants can enter what they eat each day and how much exercise they get, then get a summary of calories in and calories out.

"I think we all know that as a nation, we are not active enough," said Dr. Raymond J. Gibbons, president of the heart association, which announced its campaign Monday.

omega-2 fatty acids in fish 04/01/2007- Ocean Nutrition Canada (ONC) is looking beyond its current focus of omega-3 ingredients, investigating marine microbial species to produce carotenoids and co-enzyme Q10.

Despite having successfully built up its Meg-3 branded ingredient over the past couple of years, ONC is not ignoring the potential of other marine-sourced nutrients. It recently published research results for its Thraustochytrid strain ONC-T18, currently used as a source of DHA, with a new area of research revolving around potential carotenoid and co-enzyme Q10 production.

Dr. Colin Barrow, ONC’s vice president of research and development and co-author of the study, told that this organism or others currently being studied could lead to “value added DHA”, which is to say DHA plus carotenoids.

healthy shoppingAs 2006 slips deeper into the past, as resolutions are committed to paper and we look into the formless ether of the coming year, what everybody wants to know, of course, is, what's next?

Edible trends, especially, are slippery devils to predict, which is why futurists and prognosticators are paid bucks deluxe to consult with restaurant groups and food manufacturers to give them a leg up on the competition. Still, their foresight may only be as good as the next bend in the path, since growing cycles and ingredient procurement can make quick turns difficult when it comes to what ends up on your plate.

About this Archive

This page is a archive of entries in the Nutrition category from January 2007.

Nutrition: December 2006 is the previous archive.

Nutrition: February 2007 is the next archive.

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