Posts tagged with "Healthy food"

Agriculture illustration by Heather Skovlund for 360 Magazine

USDA Announces Investment

USDA Announces $218 Million Investment in Land and Water Conservation

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced the USDA Forest Service will invest more than $218 million to fund Great American Outdoors Act projects to conserve critical forest and wetland habitat, support rural economic recovery, and increase public access to national forests and grasslands.

Leveraging the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) provided by Congress, this investment will improve public access by funding strategic land acquisitions. Funds will also support work with state agencies to encourage private forest landowners to protect their land through conservation easements or land purchases.

“These investments reflect President Biden’s commitment to supporting locally-led conservation efforts from coast to coast and to honoring and building on the proud private land stewardship traditions of farmers, ranchers, and forest owners,” said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. “The investments will not only protect our natural heritage, but they will also create jobs, expand access to the outdoors, and help tackle climate change.”

The Forest Service administers two LWCF programs: The Forest Legacy Program and the Land Acquisition program. Together, these programs conserve critical and strategic lands across the nation’s forests on both private and public lands. The Forest Service will invest more than $94 million to fund 28 projects under the Forest Legacy Program and $123 million to fund Land Acquisition Program projects, including projects for recreation access and other needs.

Land Acquisition Program highlights include:

  • $6.4 million in FY 2021 to acquire 8,590 acres for the Lolo Trails Project in Montana. This project aims to mitigate the effects of climate change by providing the cold water that federally listed bull trout and other species need to sustain healthy populations in a warming climate.
  • $3.7 million to acquire 1,550 acres in the Yakima River Basin for the Washington Cascades Project. Supported by a wide coalition of public, private and non-profit partners, this project seeks to ensure a long-term water supply in the face of climate change.

Forest Legacy Program highlights include:

  • Protecting 12,500 acres of habitat, water and timber on the Ceylon Forest in Georgia. 2.5 million people depend on the Ceylon for drinking water that flows from and through the forest. As a working forest, the Ceylon supports a local wood-based economy that includes 121 mills, with a $1.69 million payroll impact. Once completed, the area will also become part of a much larger Wildlife Management Area and serve as an ideal hunting and fishing destination for sportsmen across the Southeast.
  • The East Grand-Weston in Maine builds on a century-old tradition of sustainable forestry and expands recreation opportunities over more than 4,300 acres. The property supports a thriving local recreation industry by protecting lands, waters and trails while also providing sustainable wood products to up to 15 mills. The property will remain in private hands while continuing to be managed for public benefits.
  • The second phase of the Kootenai Forestlands Conservation Project will permanently protect nearly 28,000 acres of land in northwest Montana. The project area belongs to the Stimson Lumber Company and contributes to the local economy while allowing free public access as a recreation destination for hunting, fishing, skiing, hiking, snowmobiling and more. The project will also protect the area from further residential development, reducing future firefighting costs by more than half.

Background

The Forest Service has been administering LWCF projects since 1964 along with the Department of the Interior. The fund supports Forest Service-led conservation projects including acquisition of critical non-federal lands within the boundaries of national forests and grasslands. Now, with full and permanent funding through the Dingell Act and the Great American Outdoors Act, the Forest Service is poised to strengthen its conservation program and provide greater recreation access to national forests and grasslands.

The agency worked with partners, considered multiple criteria and used established competitive processes to select projects for fiscal year 2021. During the review, the agency evaluated the environmental, social, and economic benefits of proposed projects and whether they contributed to other conservation initiatives. The Forest Service also considered local recreation access needs, the level of local support for strategic land acquisitions and how likely it would be for project areas to be converted to non-forest uses.

For more information on the Great American Outdoors Act and related projects, visit the website.

USDA touches the lives of all Americans each day in so many positive ways. In the Biden-Harris Administration under Secretary Vilsack, USDA is committed to transforming America’s food system with a greater focus on more resilient local and regional food production, fairer markets for all producers, ensuring access to healthy and nutritious food in all communities, building new markets and streams of income for farmers and producers using climate-smart food and forestry practices, making historic investments in infrastructure and clean energy capabilities in rural America, and committing to equity across the Department by removing systemic barriers and building a workforce more representative of America. To learn more, visit USDA.

Mina Tocalini, 360 Magazine, Sun

Vitamin D

Magnesium is a mineral that is important to our health because it plays several roles in keeping us healthy, including helping with bone heath, heart rhythm and regulating blood pressure. The RDA for magnesium is 400-420 mg/day. Lots of foods contain magnesium, but in smaller amounts. To get a full day’s worth of the recommended amount of magnesium, you could eat 2 ounces of dry roasted almonds, one cup of boiled spinach, 1 cup of soymilk,2 ounces of dry roasted cashews AND 1 cup of black beans.

In comparison, Vitamin D is important to our health in a variety of ways. It helps calcium and phosphorus to be absorbed from the gut. This is important for bone health. Vitamin D is harder to get from food because not as many foods contain it naturally. However, many food products are fortified with Vitamin D. The RDA is 15-20 micrograms/day. You can get that from 4 oz of rainbow trout, OR 1 tablespoon of cod liver oil OR 1 cup of white mushrooms.

You need vitamin D in order for proper immune system functioning. Having a deficiency leaves you immune compromised. Studies show that adults, especially in Northern climates, are at risk for Vitamin D deficiency. This is in part because there is less sunlight in those regions. It is also important to note that Magnesium is needed to help our bodies make vitamin D from sunlight; it also helps to transport vitamin D in supplement from into the body to be used in cells. 

It might be necessary to take a vitamin D supplement if you aren’t getting enough in your diet (which can be tricky since fewer foods contain it). When choosing a supplement, it is best to opt for one that contains Vitamin D 3. There are lots of options for supplements, and if you aren’t a fan of swallowing pills, you could use a gummy, like vitafusion gummies, or a sublingual, like frunutta, which contains no fillers or additives, and dissolves right under your tongue.

Nicole Avena, PhD, is Assistant Professor of Neuroscience at Mount Sinai School of Medicine and Visiting Professor of Health Psychology at Princeton University. She is the author of several books, including Why Diets Fail, and What to Eat When You’re Pregnant. 

Why Whole Grain?

Whole grain can contribute to health by changing intestinal serotonin production

Adults consuming whole grain rye have lower plasma serotonin levels than people eating low-fibre wheat bread, according to a recent study by the University of Eastern Finland and the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC). In the study, the consumption of cereal fibre from rye or wheat was also found to reduce serotonin levels in the colon of mice. In light of the results, the health benefits of whole grain cereals may be linked, at least in part, to the alteration of serotonin production in the intestines, where the majority of the body’s serotonin is produced. The results of were published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

The consumption of whole grain cereals has been associated with a lower risk of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and some cancers, but the underlying mechanisms are still poorly understood. There may be effects on bioactive compounds contained in whole grains, phytochemicals and fibres from which different metabolites are produced by intestinal bacteria.

The new study explored how the consumption of wholegrain rye modulates concentrations of different metabolites in the bloodstream. The study employed untargeted metabolite profiling, also known as metabolomics, which can simultaneously detect numerous metabolites, including those previously unknown.

For the first four weeks of the study, the participants ate 6 to 10 slices a day of low-fibre wheat bread, and then another four weeks the same amount of wholegrain rye bread or wheat bread supplemented with rye fibre. Otherwise, they didn’t change their diet. At the end of both periods, they gave blood samples, which were analysed by a combination of liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry. Their plasma metabolite profiles between the different diet periods were then compared.


The consumption of wholegrain rye led to, among other things, significantly lower serotonin concentrations when compared to consumption of low-fibre wheat bread. The researchers also tested in mice whether the addition of cereal fibre to the diet changes serotonin production in the intestine. The diet of the mice was supplemented for nine weeks with rye bran, wheat bran or cellulose flour. The mice receiving rye or wheat bran had significantly lower serotonin in their colon. For additional information on supplements and how they can modify diets go to website


Serotonin is best known as a neurotransmitter in the brain. However, serotonin produced by the intestines remains separated from the brain, serving various peripheral functions including modulation of gut’s motility. Increased blood serotonin has also been associated with high blood glucose levels.

“Whole grain, on the other hand, is known to reduce the risk of diabetes, and on the basis of these new results, the effect could at least partly be due to a decrease in serotonin levels,” says Academy Research Fellow Kati Hanhineva from the University of Eastern Finland.

The researchers are also interested in the association of serotonin with colorectal cancer.
“Some recent studies have found cancer patients to have higher plasma serotonin levels than healthy controls,” Scientist Pekka Keski-Rahkonen from IARC adds.

The consumption of wholegrain rye bread was also associated with lower plasma concentrations of taurine, glycerophosphocholine and two endogenous glycerophospholipids. In addition, the researchers identified 15 rye phytochemicals whose levels in the bloodstream increased with the consumption of rye fibre.

 

World Peas Peatos on Dr. Oz Show

It’s an exciting time for World Peas Peatos! We will be on Dr. Oz tomorrow, Wed. Nov. 7. Since its launch in March 2018, Peatos has become one of the top-selling pea-based snacks and one of the fastest growing snacks in the produce section.  Tune in to learn more about the meteoric rise of plant-based protein snacks and delicious alternatives in the produce section!

“Consumers have been hungry for a snack that provides the combined taste of “junk -food” with all the benefits of plant-based nutrition, a no compromise snack like Peatos.” Nick Desai, CEO, World Peas Peatos. “Celebrities and influencers have continued to give us praise.”

Peatos are a plant protein-based crunchy, puffed snack made of pulses that has twice the protein (4 grams) and three times the fiber (3 grams) of Cheetos® per serving. Peatos also boasts clean, non-GMO ingredients, has no artificial flavors, no synthetic colors and no added MSG. Striking flavors include the popular Classic Cheese, Fiery Hot, Chili Cheese, and Masala.

Twitter

Peatos: http://twitter.com/WorldPeasPeatos/status/1059938774908461056

West Jeff To-Go

West Jeff To-Go is a to go spot for food lovers in LA. This neighborhood eatery offers healthy, substantial food to-go with a secluded outdoor garden option for patrons to eat in. On their menu they offer salads, bowls, sandwiches, and a refreshing variety of vegan and gluten free options. The restaurant is located at 5162 W. Jefferson Blvd at the intersection of Sycamore Avenue and Jefferson Boulevard.

West Jeff To-Go opened on April 21st 2018 and they are off to a promising start with plenty five-star reviews on Yelp. Menu items consist of healthy and delicious dishes. The new eatery is a collaboration between two long-time film & TV caterers, Chef Teri Portugal-Gooden & Colleen Stewart, cooking out of a 2,000 square foot kitchen located on-site where they have been for over a decade. The branding is sleek, with nods to its feminine roots by way of menu names. “When branding the restaurant, I wanted to celebrate our feminine roots without making things obviously pink, or soft. Incorporating women’s names that were significant to us, and relative to the food has shown to resonate with our patrons. Everyone knows a Maria!” says Bryant Moscote, the driving force behind the restaurant’s marketing and front of the house operations.

The Adriana (bowl) is sliced brisket, charred zucchini, and chimichurri vinaigrette. The Maria bowl consists of pulled pork, golden BBQ sauce, and green slaw. Colleen’s Chili was excellent with carrots, celery, onion, toasted garlic, triple bean, tomato, and served on Brown Rice topped with diced onion and cheese.  All of their bowls are served with Brown Rice & Beans. There is also wide assortment of salads like the Charred Cauliflower, Quinoa Tabouli, and Roasted Potato!

The interior of the restaurant is cozy, making it easy to come in see, sample and order. West Jeff To-Go’s outdoor garden has a relaxing and inviting atmosphere with contemporary canopy lights. The garden is a favorite for guests to mingle with their friends and enjoy a nice meal, or book for a private party.

The staff delivers extraordinary service and will go through the entire menu with their guests. They are currently open from 11am to 5pm Monday through Friday and will eventually be open until 9pm. They are incorporating pop-up events on the weekend like movie nights in September, as well as breakfast!

You can check out their Instagram @westjefftogo for updates and also call West Jeff To-Go (323)935-5333 for their daily specials and catering. Share and Like West Jeff to Go on Facebook here.