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Tuesday 27 February 2018

Some Popular Cheeses ...

What Are the Most Popular Cheeses?
People often ask us which cheeses are the most popular. Having done some research, the answer to this question isn’t as straightforward as it first appears, because the answer depends on several different factors.

For example, the most popular cheese in the world is actually deemed to be Cheddar (based on recent worldwide sales). However, if you look at the most popular cheeses in any given country, this brings up a wide range of answers, from Feta to Brie and even Mozzarella. If those living in countries like France, Spain, Italy, Greece and the USA were surveyed to rate their favourite cheeses, it is likely Cheddar wouldn’t even get a look in for a top three position.

Furthermore, the only logical way that people like us can even try to gauge which cheese is the most popular is predominantly based on the reported sales figures each cheese. However, popularity won’t be the only factor to affect sales figures. Availability of cheeses will also have an effect. Cheeses that are produced on a smaller scale by artisan producers (like Gorgonzola or Stilton for example) simply will not produce anywhere near the amounts to rival the production of Cheddar or Parmesan.

Lastly, the most popular cheeses in a particular country is also significantly influenced by the cheeses that that country actually produces. This makes sense as eating cheese that has been made locally to you reduces the travelling time from ‘farmhouse to table, so to speak.

Most Popular Cheeses by Country
As previously mentioned, the most popular cheese in the world appears to be cheddar as it reported the highest sales.

cheddar cheese - image from here

The most commonly eaten cheese in Spain (by sales) is Manchego – again, this is most likely due to a high production and a plentiful availability in shops, unlike different Spanish cheeses from smaller scale producers.

Cheddar is the UK’s most popular cheese, accounting for just over half of all cheese sales for households in Britain. This makes sense too, as Cheddar is made in the UK and has been for centuries.

For the USA – Mozzarella seems to be the most popular cheese based on sales figures, followed by Cheddar and Parmesan. It seems the main use for Mozzarella in the United States is for putting onto Pizzas though! It would be unlikely to see some Mozzarella on a cheese board – no matter where you are in the world!

For France, Camembert style cheeses are most popular, followed by Brie and then Roquefort. Again, these are all cheeses which were created in France and have been produced here for many centuries.

Again, it won’t come as a surprise that Greeks love their feta and it definitely beats out any other cheese for annual sales in Greece.

Generally Popular Cheeses around the World
Here are some of the most popular cheeses across the globe:
Parmigiano Reggiano (Parmesan)
English Cheddar

Above words taken from article here

You may also wish to read the post Cheese Is Good For You ... Some Reasons Why !
You can find it here

I wonder, do you have you a favourite cheese?
Please share in the comments ...

All the best Jan

Sunday 25 February 2018

Type 2 Diabetes Can Begin 20 Years Prior to Diagnosis

Subtle elevations in fasting glucose and triglycerides associated with developing type 2 diabetes.

Risk of developing type 2 diabetes (T2D) is associated with subtle elevations of glucose and lipids more than 20 years before diagnosis, according to a study published online Feb. 5 in Diabetes, Obesity and Metabolism.

The cohort study group consisted of 812,073 individuals, about 95% Caucasians, who went through this study. All the individuals with at least one fasting glucose measurement in the baseline period, and without a documented diagnosis of T2D or a fasting glucose > 126 mg/ the baseline period, and without a documented diagnosis of T2D or a fasting glucose > 126 mg/dL. at the baseline examination (n=14,000) were included in the current study population (n=296,439, 47% women). The first measurement that was taken during the baseline period constituted the index examination. The study population was followed from the index exam until a diagnosis of T2D, death or at end of 2012, whichever came first.

Development of T2D has been associated with subtle elevations of glucose and lipids more than 20 years before diagnosis. This suggests that the diabetes processes tied to chronic insulin resistance operate for decades prior to the development of T2D.

For years we have witnessed that blood sugars and lipids don’t rise overnight, that it could take years to actually become diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.

From a cohort they included about 300,000 individuals with a fasting glucose from a health examination during 1985-96. All the subjects were then followed for development of T2D through 2012. For the incident of T2D, the 20-year T2D risk based on age, sex, body mass index, fasting glucose and triglycerides was estimated for biomedical risk factors of T2D going back more than 20 years before diagnosis. And the difference in fasting glucose increased over time.

28,244 new cases of T2D occurred during the study period with an average 20-year risk of 8.1%. The risk was substantially increased in those who had excess weight or obesity.

Among the new T2D diagnoses, 63% were men and 37% were women. The mean age at diagnosis was 63.4 years. The average time from the index examination to the recorded diagnosis/selection as control was close to 14 years. Low socioeconomic status was more frequent in subjects who had diabetes. T2D cases had higher levels of glucose, lipids, and inflammation biomarkers at the index examination, versus controls.

For both men and women, the estimated 20-year risk of T2D increased markedly with higher BMI and was doubled with triglycerides >124 mg/dL irrespective of BMI and fasting glucose. With a BMi <25 kg/m2, fasting triglycerides <124 mg/dL and fasting glucose <81mg/dL the estimated 20-year risk was 2.2% and 1.3% respectively for men and women ages 40-49 years. The corresponding risk with a BMI>30kg/m2, fasting triglycerides>124mg/dL and a fasting glucose between 100-125mg/dL was 63.5% and 69.6% for men and women respectively. The total, for men and women, 15.58% and 5.8% respectively had a 20% or higher 20-year risk of T2D according to these estimates. Corresponding 10-year risks were in general lower.


Tomato Tricolore Salad : Low Carb

For some of us it's winter, but for those living in the Southern Hemisphere it's summer! Wherever you live if you'd like to enjoy a taste of summer how about this recipe suggestion... the name of the recipe is to reflect the red, white and green of the Italian flag!

Ingredients you will need:

Serves Four
270g Vittoria (or similar) tomatoes
1 extra large ripe and ready avocado
8 slices of buffalo mozzarella
2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
6-8 fresh basil leaves

Here is what you need to do:
1. Remove the tomatoes from the vine and wash. Drain and cut into halves.
2. Slice the avocado into long strips and layer on a large serving dish. Arrange the mozzarella slices around the avocado. Scatter the cherry tomato halves over the plate.
3. To serve, drizzle with olive oil and season. Tear the basil leaves and sprinkle on top of the salad.

Each serving provides:
3.1g carbohydrate 0.2g fibre 6.1g protein 23.0 fat

Original recipe idea from here 

All the best Jan

Saturday 24 February 2018

Lana Del Rey - When The World Was At War We Kept Dancing

Saturday already don't the weeks fly by! Tonight's offering is a new song from Lana, enjoy

We Have All the Time in the World Song By - Louis Armstrong

Does the sun shine on the righteous, or does the devil look after it's own? Around fifteen years ago Jan and I found a place we wanted to retire to. Just before Christmas a home came onto the market in that place, luck was on our side, our offer was accepted and we moved in on the first of February.

I am posting this post via a Dongle, we will have full internet facilities within a week or so, and full service will be resumed, LOL. It's been a tiring few weeks, what with the move, but tonight, we are chilling out, and this music fits the bill. Hopefully, the big man in the sky will grant us some good years to enjoy our retirement. Eddie

Friday 23 February 2018

Mobile health, ketogenic diet reverse type 2 diabetes after one year

Researchers from Purdue University, Indiana University Health Arnett and Virta Health have found the combination of nutritional ketosis and a mobile health application can safely reverse type 2 diabetes. Findings are published in Diabetes Therapy.

As Americans continue facing the obesity epidemic, rates of type 2 diabetes are on the rise. In this study, researcher examined the effects of remote mobile health patient monitoring paired with a high-fat, low-carb, moderate protein diet in preventing or reversing type 2 diabetes.

“We feel that it is really important to support a patient in many different ways,” said the study’s principal investigator, Dr. Sarah Hallberg. “Due to the unique structure of the trial and use of telemedicine, we helped prevent any significant hypoglycemic events. Instead of patients scheduling an office visit, they could log their blood sugar and ketone levels in the app. Then, both the patient and I could track their levels and make adjustments accordingly.”

A total of 349 patients were enrolled in the five-year study, 87 of whom were put in the control group and received usual care while 262 followed the ketogenic diet and were provided connection to a health coach and physician through a mobile app.

In the first year of the study, 83 percent of the original enrollees remained in the study. First-year outcomes showed an average decrease of 1.3 percent in three-month hemoglobin levels and a 12 percent weight loss in the intervention group. Additionally, 94 percent of patients using insulin decreased or eliminated their need for the medication and 60 percent showed three-month hemoglobin levels below the diabetes threshold without the need for medication.

“Our results push against the accepted norm that A1C cannot be improved while taking patients off medication,” Hallberg said. “Our trial shows we did both—sometimes in a matter of weeks—and sustained and even improved results at one year. Establishing the right intervention and remote support resources is critical for our treatment approach.”


Wednesday 21 February 2018

Lemon 'Sponge' Cake Bars : Low Carb and Sugar Free

These sugar free lemon bars from Libby at 'Ditch The Carbs' are so light, tasty and fluffy. They take about ten minutes to prepare, and twenty minutes to cook ... then drizzled with a sweetened lemon glaze just makes them extra special and zesty.
Why not try them and see! 

Makes 10 Bars
Sugar free lemon bars
110 g butter softened
4 tbsp. granulated sweetener of choice or more, to taste
4 eggs - medium
24 g coconut flour
50 g almond meal/flour
80 ml natural yoghurt unsweetened
pinch salt to taste
2 tbsp. lemon juice
1 tbsp. lemon zest
1 tsp vanilla
Lemon drizzle
3 tbsp. lemon juice
4 tbsp. powdered sweetener or more, to taste

Please see Libby's cooking instructions here

... just getting my tea cup and plate!

All the best Jan

Monday 19 February 2018

Chinese Pork with Brussels Sprouts : Take-Away this Low Carb Dish

I'm sure you will find there's no need for a Chinese Take-Away, because this meal delivers all of the flavour of Chinese food, the home cooked low carb way ...
And you will have dinner on the table in no time:-

Serves Four
7g carbs per serving

1 1⁄3 lbs / 600g pork belly
2 tablespoons tamari soy sauce
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
2 garlic cloves
3 oz. / 75g butter or coconut oil
1 lb / 450g Brussels sprouts
½ leek
salt and ground black pepper

If you are looking for a gluten-free and soy-free alternative to soy sauce, try coconut aminos; check the label, but expect about one gram net carbs per teaspoon, so go easy.

About five minutes to prepare (allow time to marinade) and fifteen minutes to cook ...

I hope you may find time to 'Take-Away this Low Carb Dish' to your own recipe lists, please see cooking instructions here

Pork Belly is a boneless cut of fatty meat from the belly of a pig. This dish is considered a delicacy in many parts of the world. Pork belly is immensely popular in Chinese, Korean and Philippine cuisine.


kuài lè yǐn shí

Happy Eating
(with thanks to google translate)

All the best Jan

Friday 16 February 2018

Study reveals how carbohydrate-restricted diet improves metabolism

New details about how a carbohydrate-restricted diet improves metabolism were revealed in a study published today, which could lead to improved treatments for non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD).

A research team in Sweden examined the effects of reduced carbohydrate consumption - without an accompanying reduction in calorie intake - by putting 10 subjects with obesity and high liver fat on a two-week diet. The study, which involved KTH Royal Institute of Technology's SciLifeLab research center, combined clinical and big data analysis to determine the subsequent changes in metabolism and gut bacteria.

By doing so, they identified why the subjects showed "rapid and dramatic" reductions of liver fat and other cardiometabolic risk factors, along with marked decreases in synthesis of hepatic fat. Published today in Cell Metabolism, the work was authored by researchers from KTH, University of Gothenburg and other international collaborators.

Adil Mardinoglu, a systems biology researcher at KTH, says that the subjects were restricted to an isocaloric, low-carbohydrate diet with increased protein content. The researchers found that the metabolism of dangerous hepatic lipids was "strongly linked" to rapid increases in B vitamins and the bacteria that produce folic acid.

This benefit was coupled by a reduction in the expression of genes that are involved in fatty acid synthesis, and an increase in the expression of genes involved in folate-mediated one-carbon metabolism and fatty acid oxidation.

"A carbohydrate-restricted dietary intervention such as the one we used can be an efficient treatment strategy for a severe health problem, as medical science continues the development of new drugs," Mardinoglu says.

The study relied upon a combination of systems medicine and advanced clinical studies, with close interaction between experts in systems medicine, basic scientists, nutritionists and clinicians. Combining forces enabled the team to apply a "multi-omics" approach, which means integrating multiple data sets from the body's omes (genome, proteome, transcriptome, etc.) to identify biomarkers.

"We've moved from an era where scientists could work individually and command - in one laboratory - everything they needed, to a world that's much more interactive," Mardinoglu says.

Lead author Jan Boren, a professor at University of Gothenburg, says: "We found that the diet, independently of weight-loss, induced rapid and dramatic reductions of liver fat and other cardiometabolic risk factors, and revealed hitherto unknown underlying molecular mechanisms.

"It's important, however, to clarify that diets are complicated and that one type of diet does not fit everyone. For example, subjects with hypercholesterolemia should be careful."
Liver fat is the earliest abnormality in the pathogenesis of both NAFLD and alcoholic fatty liver disease (AFLD) due to metabolic risk factors associated with insulin resistance and metabolic syndrome in the presence or absence of alcohol consumption.

Therefore, the strategies the research team identified could be used also for the treatment of AFLD patients, Boren says.


Tuesday 13 February 2018

Fruit and Almond Clafoutis : Low in Carbs and Delicious

This is one of our favourites. A fruit and almond clafoutis, very low carb.

It really fits into the LCHF menu plans very well.

50 grams of ground almonds
1 tablespoon of plain flour
250ml of double cream
2 egg yolks
100 grams of raspberries
100 grams of blueberries
Serves 4-6

Mix the almond flour, plain flour, egg yolks and cream in a bowl or Pyrex jug.
Pour into a non stick baking dish 8" x 1.5" and place the fruit.
Place into a pre heated oven at 190c and cook for twenty-five minutes.
Remove, cover with foil and cook for further twenty minutes.
Allow to stand for 1 hour.

This gorgeous French pudding is sublime. Low-carb and so easy to make.
Serve with double (heavy) cream.

All the best Jan

Sunday 11 February 2018

Cholesterol – is it really a killer ?

Words by Ross Walker

For many years, there has been this unproven suggestion from the medical profession that high cholesterol, especially in older people, is always a major risk factor for heart disease and needs to be treated. The reality is that the evidence is just not there. 

In the British Medical Journal in 2016, a large study of 68,000 people followed for 10 years, showed clearly that there is no link between LDL cholesterol (the so called bad cholesterol) and cardiovascular disease but interestingly, those with the higher LDLs tended to live longer, have less cancer, gastrointestinal disease and infectious disease.

A recent study from the US showed that people without a prior history of existing heart disease, who are treated with statins had a higher death rate than those who were left alone.

So, what is the suggested answer for this seeming paradox? Why is cholesterol probably not the big killer we thought it was, especially in older people? The answer is that not all cholesterol is equal and LDL cholesterol is not bad and HDL cholesterol is not good. Both LDL and HDL are divided into small and large components. Here is where size is important! The larger your LDL and HDL, the more protective this is, not just against heart disease, but also cancer and other common illnesses. The reason that large LDL is protective is that it is clearly linked to building better cell membranes; cell to cell communication; a healthier blood brain barrier; is the basic ring for steroid metabolism and is vitally important for bile salt metabolism along with vitamin D metabolism. Large HDL-cholesterol is involved in what is known as reverse cholesterol transport, removing cholesterol from fatty plaques in the walls of arteries. Therefore, both large LDL and large HDL are protective.

It is, in fact, small, dense LDL cholesterol which is pro-atherogenic and small HDL which is pro-inflammatory i.e. small, dense LDL cholesterol puts fat in the walls of your arteries and small HDL cholesterol inflames your arteries, contributing to the generation of atherosclerosis.

Why then is high cholesterol a lesser risk factor in people over the age of 60? The answer is rather straightforward. If your cholesterol is going to get you in the first place, it is typically small LDL and HDL and it will typically affect you before age 60. Both the small components are major factors in the generation of premature vascular disease. Statin therapy has proven benefits in people with existing vascular disease below the age of 75, but has no place in the management of cholesterol issues if you do not have significant atherosclerosis manifested by you having had a vascular event such as an heart attack, stent or a coronary bypass or one of the vascular equivalents such as a stroke or peripheral vascular disease. The only other circumstance where treating cholesterol is important is if someone has an elevated coronary calcium score that places them in the 25th percentile of risk. As an example, if a 50-year-old male has a coronary calcium score above 50, this is already significant atherosclerosis for such a young age. If a 70 year-old has a coronary calcium score of 150, this is below the normal average for that age and should be ignored.

The bottom line here is that doctors should not be treating cholesterol but rather assessing vascular risk by either establishing a history of existing vascular disease or detecting an elevated coronary calcium. I must stress my usual point that the intravenous CT coronary angiogram is not a screening test for heart disease and has never been proven in any studies of asymptomatic people to have any benefit whatsoever over the less expensive, typically less radiation and totally non-invasive (not requiring any injections) coronary calcium score (despite using the same technology).

Simply put, you don’t treat cholesterol, you treat cardiovascular risk.


Saturday 10 February 2018

Hoseah Partsch - Paper Planes

This is by the runner up on The Voice Australia 2017 good song and a nice vocal

Kovacs - 'I've Seen That Face Before' Live

It's music night again first up a band that's been featured on the blog before, enjoy

Wednesday 7 February 2018

Red Lentil Soup with Lemon Yogurt : Vegetarian

This vegetarian recipe, is not just for vegetarians, it can be enjoyed by many! A thick, spicy red lentil soup cooled by zesty lemon yogurt ... quite yummy! Read on and see what you think ...

Serves Six

16g carb per serving

2 medium garlic cloves
1 medium onion
3 medium tomatoes
1 red hot chili pepper
2 medium carrots
1 tbsp. olive oil
1/2 tsp fresh thyme
1 tsp mustard seed
1/4 cup dried red lentils
5 cups no-salt vegetable broth
4 tbsp. plain whole-milk yogurt
2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1 tsp lemon zest

1. Peel and chop garlic and onions.
2. Dice tomatoes into 1" cubes.
3. Remove stem, seeds, and membranes from hot pepper. Mince.
4. Peel and cut carrots into 1" pieces.
5. In large pan, heat oil over medium. Sauté onion, thyme, and carrots for approximately 3-4 minutes (until vegetables begin to soften).
6. Add garlic, hot pepper, and mustard seeds. Cook for additional 3-4 minutes.
7. Stir in tomatoes, lentils, and broth, and bring to boil.
8. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer gently for 40 minutes, until lentils are tender.
9. Mix together yogurt and half of lemon zest. Set aside.
10. Add lemon juice to soup and season with salt and pepper to taste.
11. Ladle soup into warmed serving bowls, and serve with small spoonful of lemon yogurt and remaining lemon zest.

Original recipe from here
If you need help with weight/measurement conversion use this link here

We bring a variety of recipe ideas to this blog, and not all may be suitable for you. If you may have any food allergies, or underlying health issues these must always be taken into account. If you are a diabetic and not sure how certain foods may affect your blood sugars, test is best, i.e. use your meter.

All the best Jan

Monday 5 February 2018

Pork Casserole Rustic Style ... it's a favourite recipe !

This recipe/meal is in my top five favourite pork casserole recipes.

Serves two
2/3 pork chops (optional remove fat) and cut into small pieces
2 large leeks chopped
a hand-full of button mushrooms
1 large sliced carrot
1 table spoon of dried mixed herbs
Approx. 1 pint of gravy stock
Salt and pepper to taste.

Clean, cut and place all ingredients in a casserole dish or earthenware oven proof pot with lid.

Pour over the stock and cook at 190º C /375º F / Gas Mark 5 for 90 minutes

( I usually stir the casserole every 30 minutes or so ... )

Check food is cooked through, then serve and enjoy

What could be easier, very low-carb, real food and tastes great.

All the best Jan

Saturday 3 February 2018

Jacob Banks - Chainsmoking

Not heard of this guy before enjoy 

Moby - Everloving

Something a bit different for tonight, sit back and enjoy a ride through a snow covered Scandinavian  landscape 

Friday 2 February 2018

Red Peppers : Good Nutrients

There's something cheerful about a red pepper, perhaps that's why it's this blogs logo! Or maybe it's because one cup equals close to 300% of your daily Vitamin C requirement! Why not include red peppers on your shopping list ... or are you already?

All the best Jan

Thursday 1 February 2018

Halle Berry reverses diabetes with a ketogenic diet

From Pilates to plank pulls, Halle Berry has spoken openly about some of the workouts that keep her body in fantastic shape after all of these years. But Berry knows, as the experts have stated, that diet is the biggest part of a good health and wellness regimen. The 51-year-old shared in a new #FitnessFriday post that sticking to a ketogenic diet has helped her reverse her diabetes diagnosis and age backwards.

“Being diabetic most of my life, I have always had to take food very seriously,” the Oscar winner wrote. “So for years, I have been following the keto or ketogenic diet. I hate the word ‘diet’ so while you’ll see the word diet, just know I encourage you to think of it as a lifestyle change NOT A DIET! Keto is a very low-carb food plan which actually forces your body to burn fat like crazy. I also believe it’s been largely responsible for slowing down my aging process.”

“The keto lifestyle offers so many benefits such as weight loss, (moms that’s how we get rid of our baby bellies), appetite control, more energy and better mental performance,” she continued. “If you’re like me, you can possibly reverse type 2 diabetes, you’ll experience better physical endurance, better skin and also less acne if that’s an issue. And it even helps control migraines!”

The diet is a low-carb option that is high in fats and moderate in protein. Instead of burning carbs for energy, when in ketosis, your liver produces ketones, a byproduct of your body breaking down fats for energy, which end up being the main energy source. Ketogenic diets are known for their medical benefits, and have been used for many years to help treat drug-resistant epilepsy in children. There have also been studies that suggest a ketogenic diet can help with neurological disorders and have benefits in the fight against cancer, Alzheimer’s disease and diabetes, as Berry mentioned.

More than 10 years ago, Berry reportedly said that she’d gone from a Type 1 diagnosis to classifying herself as Type 2 after she claims she had moved away from insulin usage. She cited her diet and exercise for helping her control her illness.

“I’ve managed to wean myself off insulin,” she said, “so now I’d like to put myself in the type 2 category.”

The mom of two has spoken in the past about her love for this diet, saying she’s sworn by it for years.

“I swear by the ketogenic diet,” Berry said during a chat with Mamarazzi. “It’s simple. It’s no sugar, no carbs. And what you force your body to do is instead of burning sugar for fuel, you start burning healthy fats like avocado, coconut oil, eggs. You start eating healthy fats. Butter can be a part of your diet. You just eat protein, nuts, legumes. You start teaching your body. Your body begins to burn fat instead of sugar and when you start burning fat, all the fat starts to melt away.”