Alumni Story: Zaid Abuhouran (SEBS ’12): Eyes on the White House

Zaid Abuhouran

Zaid Abuhouran

Zaid Abuhouran is headed for the White House – but not by way of a political campaign. Starting in July he will be on a six-month rotation with the White House’s Domestic Policy Council in the education office, working with President Obama’s team of close advisors on U.S. educational issues.

This plum assignment is part of Zaid’s internship with the Presidential Management Fellows (PMF) program, a highly competitive two-year training and development opportunity with the federal government. The prestigious program, launched in 1977, seeks “to attract to federal service outstanding citizen-scholars from a variety of academic disciplines and career paths who have a clear interest in, and commitment to, excellence in the leadership and management of public policies and programs,” according to the program’s website. [Read more…]

US Dietary Guidelines Focus on Curtailing Sugar

The latest word from an advisory panel that helps form U.S. dietary guidelines confirms what nutritionists have been saying in recent years: Cholesterol-rich foods like eggs and shrimp aren’t as bad for us as previously believed, but sugars definitely should be curtailed… The fact that too much sugar, particularly delivered through sugar-sweetened beverages, can lead to weight gain and health problems may not be groundbreaking. But the panel’s call for Americans to limit sugar intake to 10 percent of daily calories (about 12 teaspoons a day for adults) is news… Rutgers Today talked with Peggy Policastro, a Rutgers University registered dietician/nutrition specialist and director of the Healthy Dining Team, about her take on the recommended guidelines aimed at fighting rising obesity in the United States, which affects one-third of adults and 17 percent of children, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

Read the entire article at www.medicalxpress.com »

February Among Coldest on Record

If you spent any length of time outside during the month of February, chances are, you felt the bone-chilling cold. In fact, February 2015 will go down as one of the coldest on record… "We have statewide records that go back to 1895, and we are neck and neck right now with 1979 as being the second coldest February during that 121 year period," said Dave Robinson, New Jersey State Climatologist at Rutgers University. "We’re 4 degrees away from February 1934, which was the coldest of any month."… During the morning of February 21, the southern part of the state was exceedingly cold. It was 12 below zero in Berkeley Township, Ocean County and 7 below zero in Woodbine, Cape May County. A few days later, on February 23, Walpack, Sussex County went down to minus 20, Kingwood, Hunterdon County registered at 14 below zero and Hope, Warren County was minus 12.

Read the entire article at www.nj1015.com »

Africa: Could Olive Oil Be Latest Weapon Against Cancer?

Following a Mediterranean diet has long been regarded as the key to a long and healthy life. And now scientists may have found one of the key reasons why… An ingredient in extra virgin olive oil, oleocanthal, kills human cancer cells without harming healthy ones, researchers found… The oleocanthal works by rupturing a part of the cancer cell called the lysosome, which acts as the cell’s waste dump, releasing proteins that cause it to die… "The lysosome is the garbage dump, or the recycling centre, of the cell," said researcher Paul Breslin, from Rutgers University in the U.S. "Once you open one of those things, all hell breaks loose. "The lysosome is isolated in the cell because it’s so toxic. If you rupture the membrane that’s compartmentalising the lysosome, the inside of it leaks out into the cell.

Read the entire article at allafrica.com »

Scientists Transform Lettuce into ‘Superfood’

A team of Rutgers University scientists has developed a lettuce product to compete with the nutritional value of blueberries, quinoa, almonds and kale… According to information provided by Leon Segal, director of Rutgers’ Licensing and Technology Office of Technology Commercialization, the Rutgers lettuce is not that watery, flavorless sandwich topper that constitutes much of the public’s lettuce diet. Instead, the research team used tissue culture technology to create a colorful and nutritionally powerful red leaf plant they call Rutgers Scarlet Lettuce… Most important, it tastes good- at least to Rutgers professor Ilya Raskin, who led the project… With support from the National Institutes of Health, Raskin and his team from the School of Environmental and Biological Sciences set out about three years ago to see how they could boost the health value of the vegetable through "nutritional breeding."

Read the entire article at www.vegetablegrowersnews.com »