Meatless Mondays: Knock, Knock…Who’s there? Orange!
Mobile Cuisine Magazine is proud to provide our readers with another article designed to inform them about a multifaceted program that is spreading throughout the country. We have designated our Monday features to help promote the Meatless Monday’s program which not only do we support on the website, but our staff actually has adopted in our Monday dietary lifestyle.
We are always looking for information to share that will entertain, but also educates our readers on reasons why eating meatless (on at least one day of the week) can help to improve your lives. Today we wanted to point out the findings in a 2010 study on the intake of alpha-carotene.
People with high blood levels of alpha-carotene, an antioxidant found in orange fruits and vegetables like carrots, winter squash, oranges and tangerines, live longer and are less likely to die of heart disease and cancer than people who have little or none of it in their bloodstream, the new study reports.
Unfortunately, the study does not prove a cause and effect relationship, but only provides an association between the two. With that said, the study and its findings are very interesting since in the past, other clinical studies haven’t even provided that much.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have researched and analyzed alpha-carotene levels in blood samples from more than 15,000 adults who participated in a follow-up study of the third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, known as Nhanes, from 1988 to 1994.
By 2006, researchers determined, 3,810 of the participants had died. But those with the highest levels of alpha-carotene were more likely to have survived, even after the scientists controlled for variables like age, body mass index and smoking.
Those with the highest concentrations of the antioxidant were almost 40 percent less likely to have died than those with the lowest; those with midrange levels were 27 percent less likely to die than those with the lowest levels.
“It’s pretty dramatic,” said the lead author, Dr. Chaoyang Li, a C.D.C. epidemiologist, whose study was published online on Nov. 22 in the Archives of Internal Medicine. While alpha-carotene may be no more than an indicator of other aspects of a healthy lifestyle, studies have found that it inhibits the growth of cancer cells in the laboratory, he said, adding, “We need more research.”
This study immediately brought to mind my oldest daughter who at one time in her life, spent nearly two hours at the dinner table while I coaxed her into eating a single bite of a carrot. Even though, to date she still despises carrots, I hope this study will help to persuade her to eat them more often than she does now, or at least other orange fruits and vegetables.
So even if you are like my daughter, be sure to go out and eat your carrots or other orange vegetables today. We will be profiling a soup truck in the San Francisco area later today that is sure to have menu options that provide a steady stream of orange veggies to its customers.
Mobile Cuisine Magazine looks forward to continued coverage of Meatless Monday for our readers!