It all started with that vegemite stuff

Australian Navy embraces vegetarianism.

It is part of a program called Smart Fuel which was first introduced in corporate canteens. Now, in consultation with the navy, it is being phased in by Serco Sodexho, contracted caterers to the Australian Defence Force. The concept will also be introduced into the army and air force.

Inside the junior mess at HMAS Watson yesterday (with some of the best restaurant harbour views in town) up to 140 sailors paid $3.75 for lunch.

There was a choice of ratatouille with rice or spaghetti with either bolognaise or the vegetarian-friendly provencal sauce.

Meat dishes such as beef topside and stir-fry chicken were also included.

The rest of the week’s vegetarian choices would surely have old-time mess chefs reaching for the rissoles: they included garlic with cumin-tempered lentils with rice, stir-fry garden vegetables in light olive oil with rice and – don’t get defensive, chaps – asparagus vol-au-vents.


I was pretty sure that the Bush African AIDS money would come with strings attached disallowing condom distribution and requiring abstinence-only education, but apparently that’s not the case. It will be interesting to see where the money actually goes.

Food fight!

Health Groups Sour Over New Dairy Campaign.
Copying the National Cancer Institute’s “5 A Day” vegetable campaign, the National Dairy Council has intruduced the “3-A-Day” campaign. The “5 A Day” folks aren’t happy and want the new program ended:

“From a Cancer Society perspective, our biggest issue is probably that they have this campaign going that is not doing much to promote low-fat or fat-free dairy products,” says Colleen Doyle, a registered dietitian who serves as nutrition and physical activity director for the American Cancer Society.

“The recipes on the [3-A-Day] Web site include low-fat and reduced-fat,” she says. “We really don’t have any issue with the fact that they are promoting dairy products, but we wish there had been a [stronger] low-fat message. With cancer and heart disease rates so high, it would have been desirable to see that message as a primary message of the campaign.”

Live long

The Okinawa Way

What’s their secret? In 2001, three specialists published a study of the locals’ longevity in a book called “The Okinawa Program,” which reached American best-seller lists. The authors—Okinawa International University gerontologist Makoto Suzuki, Bradley J. Willcox, a former geriatrics fellow at Harvard Medical School, and his twin brother, D. Craig Willcox, a medical anthropologist—found that elderly Okinawans had remarkably clean arteries and low cholesterol. Heart disease, breast cancer and prostate cancer were rare, which they attributed to the consumption of locally grown vegetables and huge quantities of tofu and seaweed, rigorous activity and a low-stress lifestyle. Suzuki and the Willcox brothers also determined that Okinawans have no genetic predisposition to longevity: when they grow up in other countries, they take on the same arterial disease risk as those in their new home. The authors claim that if Americans lived more like the Okinawans, “80 percent of the nation’s coronary care units, one-third of the cancer wards, and a lot of the nursing homes would be shut down.”

Weight Training May Help Heart

Weight Training May Help Heart
“In the Harvard School of Public Health study, men who engaged in weight training for 30 minutes or more weekly had a 23 percent lower risk of heart disease than men who did not pump iron. The researchers said the benefits may result in part from reductions in blood pressure and body fat achieved through weight training.”

Meat Stinks

From PETA comes MeatStinks, a nice and in-your-face vegetarian propaganda site. I don’t think I’ll ever join PETA, I mean, they advocate banning animal research, but at least they have good grasp of the miriad reasons for vegetarianism and don’t just harp on the animal rights stuff.