Flavour of the Week


  • Vitamin D scores an A+! It appears that there is a link between lower vitamin D levels in the autumn and winter and increased susceptibility to viral infections during these seasons. Adequate vitamin D may help strengthen the immune system, especially in older populations. Most Canadians should take a supplement providing at least 1000 IU of vitamin D throughout the fall and winter.
  • Feast in fear of famine? New study sheds light on the association between poverty and obesity in the developed world. Household food insecurity may increase risk of overfeeding and subsequent obesity in children.
  • Are your kids on a first name basis with Ronald? Familiarity with fast food advertisting is linked with childhood obesity in a new study. Youths who recognized many fast food ads were more than twice as likely to be obese compared with those who recognized fewer ads.
  • Genetic predisposition to obesity? No problem – just get enough sleep! A study in twins found that those who sleep longer have a lower body mass index AND that the amount of sleep can decrease the role genetics plays in body weight. The authors point out that you can’t “sleep yourself thin” but sufficient sleep may allow for other modifiable, environmental factors to play a larger role in determining body weight.
  • Will fruits and veggies be the newest cosmetics? Turns out the pigments that make those veggies so colourful can also increase your colour and consequently attractiveness. 3.3 portions per day were sufficient to increase attractiveness. Importantly, the study used primarily Caucasian participants. Perhaps not the best reason to eat your fruits and veggies, but we’ll take whatever we can get! The full article is also available open access on-line.

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