Good evening, ladies and gents. Welcome to tonight's blog. Now that we've dispensed with the pleasantries, let's look at some of today's most interesting health and diet headlines. First up! This article discusses the recent move by John Hancock Insurance company to incentivize its life insurance policyholders to buy healthier foods. Policyholders can earn discounts, cash back, and save on their premiums with John Hancock as part of its "Vitality Program"."It’s designed to recognize that nutrition, and particularly nutrition combined with exercise, is really the best recipe for living a long and healthy life," says Michael Doughty, president of
John Hancock Insurance, who says they are the first life insurance company in the U.S. to give customers perks for choosing healthy foods. It's good for their business, and obviously good for their customers, too. Who doesn't like saving money and living longer? Our next article for today tells you a few ways in which you can make some of your favorite dishes a bit healthier by swapping some of the less healthy ingredients for healthier alternatives. It contains a couple recipes you might enjoy, such as Chicken Parm with Roasted Broccoli, Spinach Taco Burgers, and Black Bean Salsa Spuds. It reminds me of a dish I helped my brother prepare recently, as we made Zuppa Toscana (you know, the delicious soup @ Olive Garden!) but substituted cauliflower for potatoes. It was quite good. Moving on, this one's more of a downer. This article (as well as articles on many websites) looks at a recent study that broke down the diets for approximately 4,400 American children under the age of 2 between the years of 2001-2012. The results: not so good. By age 1, many American babies are being fed brownies and french fries, as the "American Diet" becomes their own. By 1 year of age children "are consuming more than 5 teaspoons of added sugar and more than 1,500 milligrams of sodium a day, which is similar to what many nutritionists recommend as a limit for adults." With dietary habits like these being formed so early, is it any wonder Americans eat so poorly? Lastly, this article tells us of a government agency in the United Kingdom that recommends including "exercise equivalents" on foods' nutrition labels. This isn't so different from having calorie totals on there, but it might be more impactful. If a candy bar said you had to run 2 miles to burn it off, for instance, you might be more apprehensive than reading "200 calories". (BTW, rule of thumb is that a 180 lb person burns approximately 100 calories by walking a mile, in case you were wondering) I hope they enact this measure, just to see how it works. You're still free to pay no mind to the nutritional information, and eat away. Well, I hope this was some "food for thought". Until next time, be healthy, my friends.