street-foodStreet foods comprise of a portion of the average Trini’s diet – shark and bake, doubles and roti to name a few examples… Street foods are not a local phenomenon though – in the U.S. common street foods include hot dogs, pretzels and tacos and in the U.K., kebabs, hamburgers and doughnuts are commonly sold in the streets.

There are several factors that have contributed to the rise in the number of street food vendors in many cities. Population growth has spurred the worldwide escalation of street food vendors. In addition there is a need for quick, ready-to-eat foods with less women having time to prepare meals at home. The increased workforce has also expanded the market for street foods. Street foods are also usually lower in cost compared to restaurant and fast-food meals, making them desirable to consumers. Lastly, street foods usually are cultural/ ethnic foods making them an attractive alternative to home-cooked meals.

We all know the type of cravings chocolate bestows upon us, the indescribable taste it exudes and the feelings it evokes.  Chocolate was, and still is, considered to be the food of the Gods. The ancient Aztecs reserved it for the royalty.  ‘So we are all royalty when we eat chocolate!’

Chocolate in its purest form is called cacao.  Milk chocolate, dark chocolate and other types of chocolates are categorized by the amount of cacao they contain.  The higher the cacao content, the darker the chocolate becomes. 

Chocolate has several health benefits as follows:

  • Heart – Of all known edibles, cacao ranks the highest in beneficial antioxidant polyphenols that curb heart disease, as demonstrated by a study done at the Unversity of California Department of Nutrition.
  • Brain – Cacao with its wealth of mood-modifying elements has a positive effect on the mind.  Cacao also encourages the production of the ‘feel-good’ neurotransmitter, serotonin, which soothes depression, anxiety and irritability.
  • Stress reduction – Ah…this should be known already!   The Swiss scientists have found that when very anxious people eat an ounce and a half of dark chocolate every day for two weeks, their stress hormone levels were significantly reduced.   So, go ahead and have a bite of that dark chocolate after a stressful day.
  • Sun Protection – Dark chocolate is very rich in skin protecting flavonols and the British researchers discovered that participants who consumed nutrient dense cacao over a period of three months had significant reduction in the speed of developing sunburns.
  • Lower BMI – Now this one is a very good reason!   Research published in the Archives of Internal Medicine revealed that out of 1000 Californians between the ages of 20 and 85, those who consumed chocolate on a regular basis had lower body mass index (BMI) ratings.   It is speculated that dark chocolate in particular might help balance the hormones that facilitate the weight control.

    With all these health benefits, it is no wonder why chocolate is considered as the food of the gods.   So do provide your loved ones with chocolate and better yet, dark chocolate.  It will be a set of happy, contented and appreciated “Royals” walking around for Valentines!!!

    If you would like to learn more, contact us at 662-7161 ext. 2172 or you can log on to our website www.cariri.com or like us Facebook at www.facebook.com/caribbeanindustrialresearchinstitute or follow us on Twitter @ cariri_tt.
On the 1st day of Christmas my true love gave to me One Updated Food Regulation christmas-food3

 

 

On the 2nd day of Christmas my true love gave to me Two Calibrated Thermometers
And One Updated Food Regulation
On the 3rd day of Christmas my true love gave to me Three Clean Cutting Boards
Two Calibrated Thermometers
And One Updated Food Regulation

 christmas-food2Food Safety for Christmas? Nah man, the food always good. I never got stomach problems; in fact I have an iron belly. Why waste  my time washing my hands when I could be eating? Who say we have to eat turkey  as soon as it cook and cut up the leftovers an put in the fridge to cool? That is just more work! And beside if you wait, the turkey will be gone by the time everybody goes home!” Those are the common perceptions that people have when the phrase Food Safety is stated in the same sentence with Christmas. This Christmas eat, drink and be merry with these simple home food safety tips from The Caribbean Food Safety Centre (CFSC).

The CFSC is located at the Caribbean Industrial Research Institute (CARIRI) which is located at the UWI Campus, St Augustine knows that everyone is looking forward to scrumptious food such as ham and turkey and pastelles. CARIRI  knows that you want to have a great Christmas and we do too. But we know that there are risks of food poisoning and food-borne illnesses and those can ruin your Christmas celebrations. So take a little extra time and with a little‘know-how’ you can have the Christmas you want without the fear of food poisoning or food-borne illnesses striking you and your family.

bottled-waterThere are several claims that storing plastic bottled water in hot cars can lead to cancer especially breast cancer in humans. The assertion is that the heat in the car causes the plastic bottle to leach certain chemicals into the water, which is then consumed leading to inadvertent ingestion of potential carcinogens!

There has been a lot of speculation surrounding the truth to these claims. Is it really a myth or fact! To determine this there must be supporting information.

A statement from the International Bottled Water Association (IBWA) dated June 8th 2007, entitled “Science proves that plastic bottled water containers are safe under a variety of conditions”, states that there are no studies that prove this theory; instead, these allegations have been perpetuated by emails and media hype that only frighten and confuse consumers.

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