Low Carb / High Fat Diet

I recently read a book by Dr. Aseem Maholtra – “The Pioppi Diet”. In it he explains the science behind his recommended diet: low carb / high fat.

He cites various studies which point to our high intake of refined carbs and sugar being the cause of vascular disease and the diabetes epidemic. He reckons this type of diet will improve your glucose and lipid numbers. Insulin resistance is also reduced.

One reputed adherent of the low refined carb diet is Queen Elizabeth II.  She seems to be in good shape for her age so there might be something in it. (She does like cake though, apparently.)


Simple Bread Recipe

This recipe works with spelt, rye and wholemeal flour. You can hand-knead for 10 minutes or use a stand mixer like I do.

Strong white flour 100g
Rye, wholemeal or spelt flour 400g
Olive oil 50ml
Salt 10g
Instant yeast 10g
Water, lukewarm 300ml

Mix all the ingredients in a stand mixer for 2 minutes at number 2 power setting or hand-knead for about 10 minutes
Cover and leave to prove for an hour at room temperature
Roll the dough into a ball then press down lightly to form a slightly flatter shape (Flour the work surface and your hands first)
Put the dough ball onto a baking tray with some greaseproof paper underneath it
Heat oven to 50°C and put the dough in for an hour
Remove the dough from the oven
Heat oven to 210°C and bake the loaf for 30 minutes
Remove and leave to cool


Antibiotic Resistance / Farming

George Monbiot has a good piece in today’s Guardian about antibiotic resistance and farming in the USA and elsewhere. According to this article, antibiotic use is more prevalent and less strictly regulated there, which is a bad thing for all of us:

Resist a US trade deal. Your life may depend on it | George Monbiot

Resist a US trade deal. Your life may depend on it | George Monbiot

We cannot trust our government to fight America’s disgusting farming practices. Unless we mobilise, US livestock pumped full of antibiotics will harm us all, writes Guardian columnist George Monbiot

Source: www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/feb/14/us-trade-deal-government-farming-practices-livestock-antibiotics




This article in yesterday’s Guardian is largely negative about Quorn and other meat substitutes. The main thrust of their argument seems to be that Quorn is an ultra-processed food and therefore not good. I tend to agree which is why I don’t eat it any more but it’s still better than killing animals:

The Quorn revolution: the rise of ultra-processed fake meat

The Quorn revolution: the rise of ultra-processed fake meat

It was reported last week that Quorn is on course to become a billion-dollar business. It is part of a booming industry of meat alternatives – but many of these products are a far cry from the idea of a natural, plant-based diet

Source: www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2018/feb/12/quorn-revolution-rise-ultra-processed-fake-meat


Easy Sauce for Dal or Chickpea Curry


*Per person*:
Olive oil – quite a bit
1/2 onion
1/2 a pepper
2 cloves garlic
Half-thumb-sized piece of ginger
Salt  to taste
Turmeric – ½ teaspoon
Ground coriander – teaspoon
Cumin powder – ½ teaspoon
Chilli flakes – to taste or omit if you prefer
Passata – about half a mugful
Water to thin sauce
½ a lemon or lime, juiced


Finely chop (Or you can use a MagiMix) the onion, garlic, pepper and grate the ginger, then sautee gently in the oil for 5-10 mins
Stir in all the spices & salt
Add the passatta
Add the water
Simmer for 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally
Add the chickpeas or pre-cooked lentils  & allow to heat if cold
Add the lemon or lime juice


Livestock Farming and Antibiotic Resistance

Some interesting facts in this article on livestock and antibiotic resistance:

  • Pneumonia, tuberculosis, and salmonellosis are already showing increasing resistance to antibiotic treatment
  • It’s estimated that up to 90 percent of antibiotics consumed by animals are excreted
  • Use of antibiotics for livestock greatly exceeds that of uses for humans
  • Antibiotic use in livestock farming is lowest in Norway, and also low in Finland, Sweden and Denmark — high-income nations with effective regulation

Read it yourself here:

How do we reduce antibiotic resistance from livestock? – Our World in Data

How do we reduce antibiotic resistance from livestock? – Our World in Data

This blog post draws on data and research discussed in our entry on Meat and Seafood Production & Consumption.

Source: ourworldindata.org/antibiotic-resistance-from-livestock


Ivory campaigner found dead at home.

Esmond Bradley Martin, 75, was found with a stab wound to his neck at home in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi.

Full story here / Wiki Tribune:

Key figure in fight against ivory trade found dead

Key figure in fight against ivory trade found dead

British man was a colourful and important contributor to preservation of elephants

Source: www.wikitribune.com/story/2018/02/05/africa/kenya/key-figure-in-fight-against-ivory-trade-found-dead/46658/


Amazon Delivering Live Lobsters.

From today’s Sunday Times:
“Amazon is marketing live lobsters for home delivery, meaning the creatures spend days in a box as couriers drive them around the country. The Canadian creatures sell for £46.49 each, including delivery, and arrive up to 12 days after being ordered.

The revelation follows growing concern over the treatment of lobsters, crabs and other large crustaceans that are often kept alive for days or weeks after capture, transported long distances and then boiled alive. The Swiss banned this cooking method last month.

The live lobsters available on Amazon are marketed by Fine Food Specialist, a separate firm based in New Covent Garden, southwest London, and founded by an Old Etonian, Drogo Montagu.

Amazon tried to distance itself from the sales, pointing out that Fine Food Specialist used its platform as an independent vendor, and declined to comment further.

Montagu said he was trying to offer the “highest-quality products”, adding: “In some cases the finest quality is live seafood . . . There is a small market for these products, but it is generally people who love their food and want the very best.”

He said there was “no evidence” to suggest lobsters could feel pain. However, Lynne Sneddon, director of bioveterinary science at Liverpool University, said: “Live transport is likely to cause a stress response due to confinement, deteriorating water quality and possible thermal stress.”

For living marine creatures sent out for delivery, perhaps the worst scenario is if the customer is out when the courier arrives — in which case, Amazon says, they are likely to be returned to a depot, where they will spend more days in confinement.”

Link to original article (Paywall): https://www.thetimes.co.uk/edition/news/amazon-delivers-ordeal-for-lobsters-37j28fwcr


Engineered Meat?

This piece in today’s WikiTribune sheds some light on the future of lab-grown meat. Looks like it has promise:

Lab-grown meat: how can we satisfy future demand?

Lab-grown meat: how can we satisfy future demand?

By 2050 global meat consumption is predicted to double. One scientist thinks he may have the solution

Source: www.wikitribune.com/story/2017/07/18/science/meat-future-demand/995/