Reading List: Soda Linked To Early Death, BPA Ban Faces Resistance and More People Going Organic
In this week’s nutrition news: Study compares mercury levels in supermarket and restaurant sushi, NYC mayor Bloomberg encourages companies to slash salt and soda (diet and regular) linked to early death.
New York mayor and health advocate Michael Bloomberg has banned smoking and trans fat, plus passed a law requiring restaurants to post calorie counts. Now, he's on to a new initiative: cutting salt. Instead of having the government mandate how much salt should be in foods, Bloomberg is urging food companies countrywide to voluntarily reduce it. Companies like Starbucks, Au Bon Pain, Kraft, Subway, and Fresh Direct (a New York-based food delivery service) have all vowed to cut the salt.
Despite the steep cost, a recent survey shows many folks are spending a more of their on organic produce. Sales of organic fruit and veggies increased 11.4 percent in the past year. Over the past 10 years, sales have skyrocketed from $2.55 billion to a whopping $9.5 billion a year. If you’re looking to start buying organic or want to know when it really makes the most sense, check out our list of the most (and least) contaminated produce.
Mercury Watch: Supermarket Sushi vs. Restaurant Sushi
Taking in too much mercury has been linked to neurological damage, especially in young kids and unborn babies. So if you're springing for sushi, which varieties have more mercury? Well, a report published in mid-April analyzed sushi samples from restaurants and supermarkets in New York, New Jersey and Colorado. The findings: sushi-grade tuna from restaurants may have higher amounts of mercury than sushi from the supermarket. That's becuase supermarkets tend to sell yellowfin tuna, which contains less mercury than other tuna species like bigeye and bluefin. How much mercury is too much? The FDA suggests that pregnant women and women of childbearing age limit their fish consumption to 12 ounces per week and avoid high mercury fish like shark, tilefish, swordfish and king mackerel.
It’s easier to make conscious decisions if you know which type of tuna you are buying. Read more on how to choose the right tuna in our previous post.
Toby Amidor, MS, RD, CDN, is a registered dietitian and consultant who specializes in food safety and culinary nutrition. See Toby's full bio »