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Labor Day Party Tips
Labor Day Party Tips
August 30, 2014

Labor Day is here and that means gatherings, picnics, and BBQs to celebrate! SupermarketGuru wants to make sure you are safe this weekend, and so here are a few reminders and tips to celebrate safely.

Outdoor bbqs can often present food safety issues, from cooking meat to the right temperature to keeping your food fresh, there are lots of ways unsafe foods can dampen the party. Here's how to make sure your bbqs are the most delicious and the safest they can be.

When it comes to food safety, cooking meat to the correct temperature is critical. Use a thermometer. There are even apps for this if you can believe it! For instance the iGrill2, a wireless Bluetooth Smart thermometer tells your smartphone when your food is ready. The thermometer connects to your phone through an app, and will give you the real time temperature of your meat. You'll get an alert when your food has reached the desired temperature. Just one of the neat ways to upgrade your bbq experience.

Staying hydrated is key for the grill chef and guests. More of us now are looking for beverages that are both refreshing and healthy without added sugars or artificial sweeteners. This season how about coconut water, iced tea, fresh fruit and veggie juices and garden scented water (think basil and lemon!).

Don't wash the chicken! Research from the UK's Food Standards Agency has found that washing chicken can lead to splashed water droplets that can spread harmful bacteria on to our skin, work surfaces, clothing and cooking equipment. The government's food watchdog has urged consumers to stop washing chicken before they cook it to avoid contaminating their kitchen with Campylobacter. FSA chief executive Catherine Brown said: "Although people tend to follow recommended practice when handling poultry, such as washing hands after touching raw chicken and making sure it is thoroughly cooked, our research has found that washing raw chicken is also common practice (that may not lead to the desired outcome)."

What about mayo? Traditionally, mayo is a blend of oil and egg yolks that is seasoned with vinegar, lemon juice, salt and occasionally mustard. Mayo gets its fragile reputation from the egg yolks which can spoil easily especially in homemade varieties that use unpasteurized eggs if left at room temperature. So, why doesn't commercial mayo spoil? Commercial brands of mayonnaise use pasteurized eggs, or an egg yolk replacement that doesn't spoil, that's also why most varieties of mayo are not refrigerated when you buy them. Moreover, a study from the Food Research Institute of the University of Wisconsin, found that mayonnaise in salads might actually help reduce spoilage. The vinegar, lemon juice, salt and other ingredients make mayo acidic and "preservative like" and therefore likely to protect against spoilage. Remember if you are using homemade mayo you need to be much more careful!

And of course, last but not least: wash your hands thoroughly with hot soapy water before cooking, handling raw foods, and before handling cooked foods. Cross contamination is one of the biggest sources of food safety issues; washing up prevents problems. If you are not near running water you can use a waterless cleaner that kills germs and bacteria instantly. Also, fill a spray bottle with water and one tablespoon of bleach to keep handy to wipe off surfaces and utensils.

SupermarketGuru wishes you a Happy Labor Day Weekend.

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Posted by Ken at 12:00 AM - Link to this entry  |  Share this entry  |  Print

The Top Five Colored Produce Picks
The Top Five Colored Produce Picks
August 30, 2014

Variety is the spice of life, and as it relates to food it means much more than having different foods every day or every so often. It also refers to the colors we eat. Getting a variety of colorful produce in our diet can have an important positive impact on our overall health. So, what are the best options in each color group? While there are no losers produce - all fruits and vegetables are beneficial- there are clear winners. Here are the top winners in five colors.

Blue: Blueberries - Blueberries are delicious, and consumption of blueberries may aid in prevention of cardiovascular disease, diabetes and Parkinson's disease. Additionally, blueberries boost immune function. Choosing frozen isn't a bad thing as they may be just as good or better (and easier on the pocketbook!) as their fresh counterparts.

Green: Watercress - Watercress, is in the cruciferous family, and is a powerful green. It contains lutein for eye health, iodine for metabolism, and is high in chlorophyll, which is great for our blood. Watercress also contains a number of antioxidants that help protect cells from damage.

Orange: Sweet potatoes - Sweet potatoes are special not only because of their naturally sweet taste, but they are packed with nutrients; namely calcium, potassium, copper, niacin, vitamin A, and vitamin C.

Red: Strawberries - Strawberries are bursting with nutrients; they are high in antioxidants, anthocyanin, polyphenols, vitamin C, folate, fiber, and potassium. Health benefits associated with strawberries include: decreased risk of stroke and cancer, lowering blood pressure and alleviating symptoms of allergies and asthma. Still want more... strawberries are being studied for their potential role in preventing age-related memory loss.

White: Popcorn - While not technically in the produce section, pop corn is a whole grain that is a delicious, low-calorie snack that has been shown to contain more antioxidants than fruits and vegetables. And it's packed with fiber.

Even if you don't choose these top colorful picks, SupermarketGuru encourages you to choose vibrant colored produce and include it in every meal.

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Posted by Ken at 12:00 AM - Link to this entry  |  Share this entry  |  Print

Brewer Releases 99-Pack of Beer
Brewer Releases 99-Pack of Beer
August 29, 2014

We all know the saying "Everything is BIG in Texas." But for beer lovers everywhere, this is even cooler than big hats, belt buckles, and barbecue. Actually, this would be ideal with a lot of freshly charred barbecue.

Austin Beerworks has just unveiled a new over-the-top way to get its beer into your gut with a limited-edition 99-pack of brewski. The big box of brew will set you back $99 (or a buck a can), which is pretty good for a can of this Texas good stuff. But don't expect it to fit in your compact car with ease. The packaging is insanely exaggerated at seven feet long. The brewery released the gigantic box as part of a social media campaign for its Peacemaker Anytime Ale.

The 99-pack is only available in Austin, and only for a limited time and in limited quantities. By state law, the brewery is not allowed to ship out of state, so you might have to make the drive. Just drink responsibly, and it will probably last for a while.

Maybe this will inspire people to have house parties called "99-ers."

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Posted by Ken at 1:43 AM - Link to this entry  |  Share this entry  |  Print

Residents Of Almost All-Woman Town Seek Bachelors
Residents Of Almost All-Woman Town Seek Bachelors
August 29, 2014

Life is pretty sweet for the women of Noiva Do Cordeiro.

According to the Telegraph, they have constructed a society in the southeast part of Brazil that is communal, egalitarian and almost all-female.

But some of the women in the town say it would be nice to have a few more dudes in the mix.

"I haven't kissed a man for a long time," Nelma Fernandes, 23, told the Telegraph. "We all dream of falling in love and getting married. But we like living here and don't want to have to leave the town to find a husband. We'd like to get to know men who would leave their own lives and come to be a part of ours. But first they need to agree to do what we say and live according to our rules."

There are a few married women in Noiva Do Cordeiro, but their husbands work in cities no closer than 60 miles away and tend to only live in the town on weekends.

Both the Telegraph story and other outlets portray the desire for more members of the opposite sex in the town as a desperate plea to men to help them "shoulder the burdens" of everyday life.

But judging from what the residents have actually said, that doesn't seem like what's going on.

"There are lots of things that women do better than men," Rosalee Fernandes, 49 said.

"Our town is prettier, more organized, and far more harmonious than if men were in charge. When problems or disputes arise, we resolve them in a woman's way, trying to find consensus rather than conflict."

So it appears more like these women have created a society of anarchist anthropologists' dreams and some of them would like to hang out with guys more, provided they don't tear the town's social fabric to shreds.

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Posted by Ken at 1:43 AM - Link to this entry  |  Share this entry  |  Print

Mother's Facebook post gets her 4-year-old son kicked out of school
Mother's Facebook post gets her 4-year-old son kicked out of school
August 29, 2014

Ashley Habat is angry after a post on her private Facebook page resulted in the expulsion of Will, her 4-year-old son, from Sonshine Christian Academy.

She posted a complaint on her Facebook page saying the school did not notify her about picture day for her son and rhetorically questioned the intelligence of the staff. The post was on her private page, but she made one mistake: she tagged the school in the piece.

The school then expelled Will and accused her of "sowing discord," which Habat promised not to do when she signed a handbook upon Will's enrollment.

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Posted by Ken at 1:43 AM - Link to this entry  |  Share this entry  |  Print

Bruce Springsteen to Release Children's Book
Bruce Springsteen to Release Children's Book
August 29, 2014

Outlaw Pete, which is based on a ballad from Bruce Springsteen's Working on a Dream album, will be published by Simon & Schuster on Nov. 4. The publisher said Thursday that the book will feature Springsteen's lyrics and illustrations by Frank Caruso. Springsteen's song was inspired by the children's book Brave Cowboy Bill, which came out in 1950. Springsteen has said that his mother used to tell him bedtime stories about Cowboy Bill.

Another rock and roll superstar, Keith Richards, has a picture book out this fall. Gus & Me, scheduled for release Sept. 9, is a tribute to Richards' grandfather, musician Gus Dupree.

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Posted by Ken at 1:43 AM - Link to this entry  |  Share this entry  |  Print

There's Very Little in the Michael Brown Shooting Incident Report
There's Very Little in the Michael Brown Shooting Incident Report
August 29, 2014

Nearly two weeks after Michael Brown's death, a police report on the shooting has finally been made public. But the glaring lack of detail is likely to increase widespread criticism that the law-enforcement community is closing ranks around Darren Wilson, the officer who fatally shot Brown on Aug. 9.

The incident report, filed by the St. Louis County police department, contains no new information on the encounter between Brown and Wilson. There are no written details about the event. As a result, the officer's account of what transpired when the two men met just after noon on Aug. 9 remains a mystery.

And it will be for some time, according to Brian Schellman, a spokesman for the St. Louis County police department. Schellman told TIME that the department does not intend to release the "investigative" component of the incident report, the part that details Wilson's version of events.

Schellman said that under the Missouri State "Sunshine" Law, the department was not required to release the information during a pending investigation. As a result, Wilson's account of what happens will remain confidential unless it is presented by a prosecutor, Schellman said.

"We will not release it," said Schellman, who noted that this is the county's normal procedure. "This isn't any different than a typical larceny from a local convenience store."

Wilson never filed a report on the incident, according to the office of the St. Louis County prosecutor. The case was quickly turned over to the county at the request of local police. According to the document, the St. Louis County police entered the incident report on Aug. 19, 10 days after the shooting. It was approved for release the following morning.

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Posted by Ken at 1:43 AM - Link to this entry  |  Share this entry  |  Print

From Tom Kraeutler - How to Pack an Off-to-College Toolbox
From Tom Kraeutler - How to Pack an Off-to-College Toolbox
August 28, 2014

Back-to-school shopping is definitely amped up when college is the destination, and amid all the linens, dorm decor and study supplies, your student should have a trustworthy tool kit.

Freshmen will feel much more at home away from home knowing they're armed for just about any fix they can get into, and upperclassmen who have already learned the hard way will appreciate an organized arsenal of gear with their very own college toolbox.

So, here's a recommended off-to-college toolbox packing list for the dorm room DIYer.

Basic tools
Hammer
Pliers
Screwdrivers (slotted and Phillips) or screwdriver multi-tool
Socket ratchet set
Adjustable wrench
Combo pack of nails and screws
Utility knife
Utility scissors
Tape measure
WD-40
Electrical tape
Fabric-backed duct tape
Power supply
Surge protector
Extension cords in a few different lengths
Extra-long telephone cable

Safety smarts
Flashlight
Battery-operated tap lights
Combination smoke and CO detector
Padlocks


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Posted by Ken at 6:49 PM - Link to this entry  |  Share this entry  |  Print

Tomatoes may reduce prostate cancer risk
Tomatoes may reduce prostate cancer risk
August 28, 2014

Eating tomatoes may lower your risk for prostate cancer by nearly 20 percent, according to a U.K. study.

Scientists from the Universities of Bristol, Cambridge and Oxford assessed the diets and lifestyles of 1,806 prostate cancer patients between the ages of 50 and 69, and compared them to that of 12,005 cancer-free men.

The study, published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention, found that men who ate more than 10 servings a week of tomatoes reduced their risk for prostate cancer by 18 percent. Study authors believe the decreased risk was a result of consuming large amounts of lycopene, a powerful antioxidant found in tomatoes which helps fight off toxins that can cause DNA and cell damage.

"Our findings suggest that tomatoes may be important in prostate cancer prevention," lead researcher, Vanessa Er, said in the release. "However, further studies need to be conducted to confirm our findings, especially through human trials. Men should still eat a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, maintain a healthy weight and stay active."

Researchers also looked at the World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF) and the American Institute for Cancer Research's (AICR) recommendations on physical activity, diet and body weight for cancer prevention and found that for prostate cancer, only the guidelines on eating plant foods - high intake of fruits, vegetables and dietary fiber - were associated with decreased risk.

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Posted by Ken at 4:50 AM - Link to this entry  |  Share this entry  |  Print

Blood Pressure Controlled Best by Patient
Blood Pressure Controlled Best by Patient
August 28, 2014

Patients with hypertension who monitored their own blood pressure at home, and adjusted their medications accordingly, had better blood pressure readings after a year than those who were under the care of their doctor, a new study shows.

Although the patients who cared for themselves weren't completely on their own, they did not have to consult their doctor every time they increased the dosage on their blood pressure drugs if it fell within the doctor's general treatment plan, the Associated Press reported.

Why this was so wasn't clear, but the researchers suggested that these patients might have been more vigilant in their own care than their doctor would have been, the AP reported. The findings were published Aug. 27 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Posted by Ken at 4:50 AM - Link to this entry  |  Share this entry  |  Print

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