Ethel A. Jacobsen First-Graders Harvest Garlic Scapes From Schoolyard Garden

It’s spring harvest time at the Ethel A. Jacobsen Elementary School garden in Surf City. Last week Joanne Kinsey, Family and Community Health Sciences educator at the Cooperative Extension of Ocean and Atlantic Counties, Rutgers New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station, joined the school’s first-graders and teachers Sarah Esarey and Kelly Turner to harvest garlic scapes – for eating and for learning… After experiencing the outdoor classroom firsthand, Kinsey remarked, "The kids were fantastic and really enjoyed working in the garden and tasting the garlic scape pasta. I totally enjoyed the entire experience, the pasta was delicious, and I hope to be invited back again."

Read the entire article at The Sandpaper »

Fight is on against Zika virus although outbreak unlikely

Middlesex, Monmouth and Ocean counties occupy a combined area of nearly 1,500 square miles, yet officials are on the hunt for predators that could fit inside the palm of one’s hand… "We’re working on getting [an answer]… More than likely, an infected person was set upon by mosquitoes in a tropical area. Those mosquitoes then went about spreading it," explained Scott Crans, senior program coordinator at the New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station (NJAES), who also teaches mosquito biology.

Read the entire article at Alanticville News »

When eating can be a life-or-death decision

A 13-year-old Chicago, Ill., student died in 2010 from an allergic reaction to peanuts after a Chinese restaurant cooked meals for a school party and apparently used peanut oil, after saying they would not… "People sometimes aren’t aware of how serious food allergies can be," said Dr. Carol Byrd-Bredbenner, a nutrition researcher at Rutgers. "To them, it may seem like an inconvenience to not put peanut butter sandwiches in their children’s lunch, but there are many other nutritious choices – and leaving the peanut butter at home may save a classmate’s life."

Read the entire article at Hudson Reporter »

Study: Increase in arsenic in well water in Hunterdon County

An analysis of well water tests by the nonprofit environmental watchdog group Raritan Headwaters Association (RHA) has detected a "disturbing increase" in concentrations of arsenic, a known carcinogen, according to a study released on Thursday, June 9… "No law requires that homeowners test their wells except when selling their property to someone else, a requirement to protect the buyer only," noted Daniel Van Abs, associate research professor for Water, Society and Environment at the Rutgers School of Environmental and Biological Sciences. The analysis was peer reviewed by Richard Lathrop, professor of environmental monitoring and restoration ecology at Rutgers University’s School of Environmental and Biological Sciences.

Read the entire article at New Jersey Hills »

Christopher Gunning Recognized as the 2016 Emerging Dietetic Leader for the State of New Jersey

Christopher Gunning receiving award from NJDA president Chesney Blue.

Christopher Gunning receiving award from NJDA president Chesney Blue.

Christopher Gunning, RDN, was recognized as the 2016 Emerging Dietetic Leader for the State of New Jersey by the New Jersey Dietetic Association (NJDA) and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics at NJDA’s 84th Annual Meeting on May 6. This award recognizes the competence and activities of members, regardless of their age, who are at the beginning of their dietetics careers. Members who receive this honor support the promotion of optimal health and nutritional status of the public through demonstrating leadership in legislation, research, education, management, and other areas related to the profession. Only one member of the NJDA is recognized with this award each year.

Gunning currently serves as the clinical nutritionist for Rutgers Student Health Services. He is the program lead for the New Jersey Institute for Food, Nutrition, and Health’s Health Information Technology in the 21st Century (H.I.T. 21) thematic program and the first clinical nutritionist hired jointly by Rutgers Student Health Services and the IFNH. Gunning has helped build the university’s nutrition counseling services, not offered prior to his hiring, and now widely available to undergraduate and graduate students on the Rutgers—New Brunswick campus.

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4 Beverages You Should Never Ever Drink Past The Expiration Date

We’ve all taken a swig out of a milk carton that’s a couple days past its expiration date, with little to no consequences. Which makes us wonder: Do these dates really mean anything? "Expiration dates are something people find confusing and with good reason," says Don Schaffner, a professor of food science at Rutgers University.

Read the entire article at Organic Life »

Top Three Mental Health Benefits of Vitamin D

Vitamin D aka the "sunshine vitamin" is not only the only vitamin made by the human body from-you guessed it-sunshine, but it’s also the only vitamin that is a hormone… Another study done at Rutgers University showed that people over 60 with vitamin D deficiencies are more prone to losing brain power, as professor Joshua Miller observed, "on average people with low vitamin D declined two to three times as fast as those with adequate vitamin D."

Read the entire article at Psych Central »

How saliva determines our food-texture preferences

Most of us like a good crunch and abhor a slimy feel in our food. And most of us think that food texture preference is simply a matter of personal taste, perhaps determined by culture or upbringing… "This is really about oral lubrication, based on the amount of water and proteins in saliva that serve as lubricants," says Paul Breslin, a nutritional sciences professor at Rutgers University in New Jersey. One of the things that he studies is "oral haptics," the scientific name for the sensation of food or liquid coming into contact with your mouth. It’s what food-world people call "mouth feel."

Read the entire article at Globe and Mail »

N.J. therapy program leaves ‘Hoof Prints on the Heart’

Those who have been around horses for years know that they leave hoof prints on the heart, but now individuals working through personal and emotional challenges will learn what horses can do for people therapeutically through the Hoof Prints on the Heart program… Hoof Prints on the Heart’s program is designed for veterans, and adults and children experiencing feelings of depression, anxiety and isolation, according to executive director Jenni Tevlin. Tevlin also developed and teaches a ‘Animal-Assisted Therapy’ class as a part-time lecturer in the Rutgers University undergraduate animal sciences department.

Read the entire article at NJ.com »

Are microwave ovens safe & nutritious? Or just convenient?

Over the last several decades, microwave ovens have become a standard kitchen appliance in many American homes. But for some, doubts remain about their safety and impact on the nutritional value of food cooked in them… This week on "Take Care," food scientist Don Schaffner takes us behind the microwave door to explain how microwave ovens work, and the ways this kind of cooking technology interacts with food. Schaffner is an extension specialist in food science and distinguished professor at Rutgers University. He is a world-renowned expert on food safety and protection and is the co-host of a podcast on microbial food safety.

Read the entire article at WRVO Public Media »