Recent Posts

Jan 19, 2011

Why don't polar bears eat penguins?

Despite the fact that the polar bear does eat a lot, there is no possibility that the polar bear could have a penguin as a tasty treat. Although both the polar bear and the penguin are polar mammals, the polar bear inhabits the Arctic and the penguin inhabits the Antarctic living nearly 12,000 kilometres apart! The only place they could meet is at the zoo.


Jan 10, 2011

Why we are not allowed to eat before surgery?

The drugs used for anesthesia are so powerful that they slow or stop your respiratory drive. When you are under general anesthesia a breathing tube is inserted through your mouth and into your airway, (trachea), to help you breathe. The trachea and the esophagus open at nearly the same place in the back of the throat. Under normal conditions a small flap of tissue covers the trachea when we swallow preventing the inhalation of food into the lungs. When you are under general anesthesia this defense mechanism is compromised and contents from the stomach can come up through the esophagus and be inhaled into the lungs. You're also at increased risk of vomiting. These two things can lead to a very dangerous condition called aspiration pneumonia.

The best way to prevent this is to make certain that there is nothing in your stomach that could be inhaled into the lungs. Even small amounts of liquids are dangerous. Smoking, chewing gum, sucking on a mint, or brushing your teeth can cause your stomach to create digestion fluids which can also be inhaled into the lungs. Therefore, it is very important that you follow your doctor or nurses instructions about not eating prior to surgery.


Jan 9, 2011

Is coffee creamer bad for you?

The nutrition label on the powdered coffee creamer in your office or kitchen might list ten calories and just a half a gram of saturated fat. Those sound like healthy low levels. But use a more realistic tablespoon-size serving instead of the miserly teaspoon listed on the nutrition facts label, and you’re looking at 45 calories and three grams of heart-harmful saturated fat. Have three or four servings per day and you’ve unknowingly consumed half a day’s saturated fat.

But the liquid version of these coffee creamers is worse. Instead of using coconut and palm kernel oils, used in the powdered version, the liquid versions use partially hydrogenated soybean or cottonseed oil. Three cups of coffee with that, delivers 1.86 grams of saturated fat, not to mention the 2.76 grams of trans fat, which is more than an entire day’s worth of the kind of fat that raises your bad cholesterol and lowers your good cholesterol.

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