Health and nutrition

Rice husks and stalks are turned into slices

University students in Colombia invented a new use for rice residues, avoiding the burning of these residues and the use of wood in some cases.

In the developed proposal, they used the shell and the stem to create sheets that can be used to make furniture, replacing the wood. According to the student Lina María Gil Rodríguez, from the Agronomic Engineering course at the National University of Colombia (UNAL), “with this product – made from waste – we want to reduce the cutting of trees to generate this type of material, and ideally, so we can replace the wood, ”he said.

Las cáscaras y los tallos de arroz se convierten en láminas

1,976,520 tons of rice waste were produced in the country in the second half of last year. The remains are generally cremated or used as a subsidy. However, as a fertilizer, it is polluting because it releases methane during decomposition and can cause respiratory diseases such as asthma and allergies.

The proposal is to develop with these remains a type of agglomerate that can be used in a sustainable way both as thermal insulation, furniture, products for agriculture and other sectors of the primary economy.

The student team has developed the idea based on local demand, which would like to make better use of the remains of the rice produced. In conclusion, despite the solutions that require the installation of adequate machines, and possibly high cost, alternatives can be sought that offer benefits for both rice producers and the environment.

FUNIBER promotes the Master’s Degree in Environmental Engineering and Technology, which technically addresses different environmental problems, with the study of solutions and good practices, taking into account economic and social factors.

Health and nutrition

Breast milk contributes to the neurological development of the baby

Breast milk contains a substance, called selenoprotein P, that contributes to the neurological development of the baby, according to a study published recently in the journal Food Chemistry .

The researchers of this study developed a new method for analyzing breast milk that was able to quantify the levels of compounds that the baby receives during breastfeeding, discovering for the first time the presence of selenoprotein P.

This substance is involved in the production of hormones, in the immune system and is responsible for transporting selenium to the brain. A deficiency of this protein could be associated with some neurological disorders and other diseases, such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.

The director of the study, Tamara García Barrera, has stated that this discovery of selenium in milk in the form of selenoprotein P “opens up several possibilities for research on the influence of breastfeeding on the neurological development of the baby.”

Leche materna contribuye al desarrollo neurológico del bebé

Until then, the transport of this substance through the umbilical cord and amniotic fluid was known, but it was unknown that this process continued during lactation.

Selenium helps the body function properly and prevents the formation of free radicals that damage cells. Several diseases, such as cancer and infertility, are associated with selenium deficiency.

The results of the study also offer more data on human milk that may contribute to improving formula milk.

FUNIBER promotes the Master’s Degree in Maternal and Child Nutrition, a program for professionals who want to expand their knowledge on aspects related to fertility, nutritional strategies for pediatric diseases and other factors that contribute to normal growth and development in childhood and adolescence.

Health and nutrition

Invest what is collected from taxes on sugary drinks

The collection of taxes on foods that are harmful to health should be used for nutrition awareness campaigns, suggests a Spanish body of dietitians and nutritionists.

One of the strategies most used by governments to promote healthy eating is to tax food products that do not offer many health benefits.

Recently, the Ministry of Consumption of Spain proposed to increase taxes on sugary drinks.

The measure is celebrated by dietitians and nutritionists, however, they point out, it is insufficient. According to the General Council of Official Associations of Dietitians-Nutritionists (CGCODN), the income from these taxes should be used to promote healthy habits, or even to reduce the tax on other basic foods that are considered healthy.

The vice president of CGCODN, Paula Crespo, recalled that many low-income people find it difficult to buy healthy foods that meet their daily nutrient demands. “The childhood obesity rate in families with fewer resources is significantly higher than in the rest,” he says.

Invertir lo que se recauda de los impuestos a las bebidas azucaradas

The president of CGCODN, Luis Morán, has stated that “the important thing is to use this collection to finance mentality campaigns about the dangers of obesity”.

Another necessary issue for the improvement of the population’s diet is the appreciation of nutritionists and dieticians. They must be part of the public health system, and that schools can develop classes on food and nutrition, capable of raising awareness about healthy consumption habits.

FUNIBER promotes studies to train professionals in the area of ​​Nutrition and Dietetics, such as the Master’s Degree in Maternal-Child Nutrition and the Master’s Degree in Nutrition and Food Biotechnology, among others.

Health and nutrition

Microbiome could be linked to risk of developing leukemia

Among those with a genetic predisposition to develop leukemia, the microbiome could act in prevention.

Several studies have already shown indicators of the effects of the microbiome on health, and understanding its association with disease is a growing field of scientific research.

According to a more recent study, gut bacteria may also lower the risk of developing leukemia among those with a genetic predisposition to the disease.

The study was published in the journal Blood, and although the experiment has been carried out in mice, the results may indicate possibilities of preventing the disease in children susceptible to genetic inheritance.

Microbioma podría estar relacionado con el riesgo de desarrollar leucemia

The study highlights that precursor B-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia is the most common among childhood leukemia cases. This type of disease is associated with a combination of genetic factors and some infections that can occur after delivery.

Even with genetic predisposition, many children do not go on to develop the disease. “In rats, it is observed that intestinal microbes are different from those of animals that are not susceptible to the disease,” says one of the study authors, Isidro Sánchez-García, from the Center for Oncological Research (CIC-IBMCC).

To continue their studies, they hope to expand large-scale experiments to find out if a change in the microbiome could be a successful strategy to prevent disease.

FUNIBER promotes studies in the area of ​​food and health, such as the Master’s Degree in Maternal-Child Nutrition and the Doctorate in Nutrition

Health and nutrition

Incorporate buckwheat into your diet

Buckwheat, also called buckwheat, is a plant whose grains are edible. But to be consumed, the shells must be removed through a grinding process. Despite having the name wheat, it is not related to the wheat we eat often.
With the rise of gluten-free diets, these cereals are gaining fame for offering culinary alternatives to wheat. For now, the high price prevents it from being consumed more extensively, but many bakers have opted for buckwheat flour to make gluten-free breads.

According to the United States Department of Agriculture, buckwheat contains nutritional values ​​very similar to wheat. Both provide practically the same amount of calories per 100 grams (340 kcal of wheat flour and 335 kcal of buckwheat flour), almost the same amount of protein and very similar values ​​of vitamins.

Buckwheat has slightly more fat, sugar, and minerals, mainly calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, sodium, and zinc.

Incorporar el trigo sarraceno en la dieta

Because of these qualities, it is believed that this grain can be a great food to offer healthy nutrition, with antioxidant effects. At the moment, there are few studies, but the Instituto Nazionale di Ricerca sugli Alimenti e la Nutrizione has been better analyzing these benefits.

According to the Alimente website, the preparation of this grain is similar to rice, and it is usually consumed with other foods. When using flour to make bread, it is important to consider that buckwheat flour is denser than wheat flour.

Health and nutrition

Neurological aspects that make us gain weight

A network of neurons that connects the brain to the stomach allows visual and olfactory signals to influence, in different ways, people who want to go up or down weight.
A study conducted by researchers at the Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Israel, reports the discovery of a network of neurons connected between the brain and the gastric basal electrical frequency.

This neural connection may be associated with the possibility of gaining and losing weight, because it provides data for a theory that believes that some people receive more stimuli when they see and smell food.

Aspectos neurológicos que nos hacen engordar

Study leader Gidon Levakov said these results suggest that “weight loss is not just a matter of willpower, but is actually related to much more basic visual and olfactory signs,” he says.

The study was carried out with 92 people who followed an 18-month weight loss intervention. These participants were analyzed using data such as waist circumference, age, and abnormal lipid levels, in addition to other behavioral tests and brain imaging.

The study understands that visual information is an important factor that causes food, since it is a meaning widely used by humans. According to the study, this sense is associated with the stomach.

To expand knowledge about food and health, FUNIBER facilitates the training of professionals with the Scholarship program for programs in the area of ​​Nutrition, such as the International Master’s Degree in Nutrition and Dietetics and the Specialization in Overweight and Obesity.

Health and nutrition

Study looks at lifestyle to reduce chronic kidney disease

A lesser known but also shocking disease. It is estimated that around 10% of the world’s population suffers from chronic kidney disease and that in many cases they cause premature deaths.Estudio analiza el estilo de vida para reducir la enfermedad renal crónica

According to a study by international researchers, lifestyle can influence the degree of risk of the disease and there is a lack of clear guidelines for health recommendations.

In this recently published study, researchers evaluated diet, exercise, and alcohol consumption with the development of kidney problems. With the results, the authors concluded that diets with more vegetables and more potassium, in addition to the practice of physical activity and the reduction of alcoholic beverages, salt and cigarettes are the main recommendations to reduce the risk of the disease.

The study has evaluated data from more than 2.5 million healthy people in 16 countries. These recommendations would serve healthy people who may be at risk of developing the disease.

Among people who are already suffering from chronic kidney problems, all the recommendations for habits should be indicated by the health professional who attends the patient.

FUNIBER promotes the Master in Health Promotion and Community Health, a program focused on the actions necessary for the design, implementation and evaluation for the promotion of community health and, thus, generate well-being and quality of life in the populations.

Health and nutrition

FAO messages to prevent food waste

Avoiding food waste is one of the strategies that the World Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has been trying to promote around the world to avoid some global social and environmental problems, such as hunger and climate change.

Mensajes de la FAO para prevenir el desperdicio de alimentos

On September 29, during the celebration of International Food Loss and Waste Awareness Day, FAO has sent some important messages, which, according to Jean Buzby, representative of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), they are:

– Take advantage of the current crisis to rethink the way we produce, manage and waste our food.

– Reducing food and waste losses requires us to strengthen food systems.

– Innovation, technologies and infrastructure are essential to improve the efficiency of food systems and reduce food losses and waste.

Crises offer us opportunities for change. “Together, the food waste of individual stocks, food companies and governments can make a difference,” he said. According to Buzby, the USDA aims to cut food waste in half by 2030.

FUNIBER promotes studies in the area of ​​Nutrition, such as the International Master in Nutrition and Dietetics, aimed at professionals who carry out their activity in positions related to health, industry or companies that want to specialize in the area of ​​food.

Health and nutrition

Studies suggest culinary began in hot springs

There is a clear image of fire as a fundamental element for human development, especially in the field of food. It is almost always imagined that hominids were able to cook when they discovered fire, a behavior that began just over a million years ago.

Los estudios sugieren que la culinaria comenzó en las aguas termales

However, paleoanthropological studies have shown that humans probably already cooked before discovering fire in the communities near the hot springs. The research, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), has analyzed biomarkers in the Olduvai Gorge, Tanzania, known as the Cradle of Humankind.

In this region, previous research has found bones of the first species of Homo habilis, as well as tools used from rock chips with basalt and quartz.

In these more recent studies, they also found the presence of bacteria that are found in very hot aquatic environments, with temperatures above 80 ° C. This bacterium is currently present in hot springs.

The presence of hominid remains near these areas, with the presence of “naturally” cooked remains of dead animals, may suggest that these humans transformed food in these waters. Researchers believe that the first cuisines arose in hot springs.

Possibly. By developing this technique, primitive humans were able to revolutionize the species, avoiding the consumption of potentially harmful bacteria and making better use of the nutrients in the different foods available.

FUNIBER offers several studies in the field of Nutrition for professionals interested in learning more about the field of food and food, for example, the International Master’s in Nutrition and Dietetics, or the Doctorate in Nutrition.

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