Matt Raymond's blog

“Rotten” Documentary a Fresh Opportunity To Talk Food Safety

Much of the country has been in the grip of a bitter, record-setting cold snap so intense that meteorologists have even called it a “bomb.” For a lot of us, that means a little hot cocoa, and a lot of streaming videos.

Ditching Fruit Because of Its Sugar Content? That's Bananas!

A recent video on BuzzFeed compared the relative sugar content in various fruits, the not-so-subtle implication being that "sugar = bad."

Such a message is not only over-simplified—focusing, as so much clickbait does, on demonizing a single ingredient (sugar, in this case)—but its aim is to evoke a kneejerk reaction that could actually end up being worse for your health than the messenger might intend.

How To Eat Out Without Pigging Out

Planning on dining out this Valentine's Day? Then you might want to make your reservations posthaste: The annual day of love is also the second-busiest day of the year for restaurants. (The busiest? Mother's Day.)

Setting the Record Straight on Food Safety

Fad diets and iffy scientific studies occupy so much of the dialogue around food and nutrition issues that it can be easy to lose sight of the things that really count the most—the ones that are truly matters of life and death.

Did you know that about 3,000 Americans die every year from foodborne illnesses? More tragic than the deaths themselves is the realization that they can be prevented, usually just with safe food-handling practices.

"The Case Against Sugar" Is a Weak One

If you came across a book or article about diet and nutrition called “You’re Doing Everything Right,” you probably wouldn’t read it, would you?  Sadly, when it comes to food and health, readers love the simplicity of a good, quick fix, regardless of whether there is any real science behind the story. Unfortunately, Gary Taubes’ The Case Against Sugar is more story than science.   

Try It Tuesday: Low-Carb, Lower Weight?

Let me start by saying that I am not a dietitian, nor am I a scientist, so none of what I am about to tell you should necessarily be taken as “advice.”

According to my own reading of the available science, low-carb diets indeed can be effective for weight loss. The main area of debate is whether such diets are effective or practical in the long run. But like any diet, it’s only as good as your ability to make it part of your lifestyle. (Read more about carbohydrates and sugars here.)

The "Ultimate Smoothie": A Timely Recipe

Just about anywhere you go these days, it seems like smoothies are more and more ubiquitous. The thick, colorful beverages are often a great way to get a hearty dose of nutrients on the go.

But making a healthful smoothie doesn't mean you have to go way out of your way, or break the bank.

Johnny Appleseed, Legend in His Own Time

Most Americans, including myself, grew up hearing the tall tales of fictional characters like the giant lumberjack Paul Bunyan, his blue ox Babe, and Pecos Bill, who “tamed the Wild West.”

And of course, there’s Johnny Appleseed, that mythical man with a tin pot on his head who planted apple trees far and wide—or so you might think. Unlike those other legendary figures, Johnny Appleseed was very much a real person whose real name was Jonathan Chapman. But according to my own unscientific research, very few of us know that he actually existed.

Bill Nye, the Biotech Guy

Bill Nye, "the Science Guy," helped make "geek chic" chic before it was chic. He also made science cool for a generation who grew up watching his eponymous PBS Kids program.

Did Gwyneth Paltrow Just Endorse Non-Organic Food?

Actress Gwyneth Paltrow has stirred up more nutrition-related controversy with a photo she tweeted showing how far $29 a week will go for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) recipients, pledging to eat only that amount of food to bring attention to that federal program.