Tag Archives: foods

A flurry of new studies finds being a vegetarian is good for you

If you’re still not convinced that being a vegetarian is good for you — then this will probably change your mind.

In recent years, more and more studies are showing just how healthy being a vegetarian really is. In fact, it’s reached the point where many health organizations shortlist vegetarianism as one of the few go-to diets. Of course, things are not always straightforward, and eating only plant-based foods doesn’t guarantee that you’re healthy — but it’s certainly a step in the right direction. Now, a new series of studies adds even more weight to that idea.

Study 1: Vegetarianism lowers heart disease risk

Among its main advantages, the vegetarian diet is most praised for its cardiovascular benefits. It’s one of the diets that heart doctors often recommend.

The new study was carried out on nearly 6,000 people in the Netherlands, finding that those who ate more plant protein at the expense of animal-derived protein showed a lower risk of developing coronary heart disease. The study was carried out over 13 years, and results showed a very strong correlation.

The study confirms what others have already found, and solidifies the vegetarian diets as one of the go-to for reducing heart diseases.


Study 2: Replacing animal protein with plant protein associated with less plaque in the arteries

It’s one of the main myths about being a vegetarian: you’re not getting enough protein. But not only is plant protein sufficient to live by, it’s actually better than animal protein for your body. A study of 4,500 Brazilian adults finds that people who regularly consumed more plant-based protein were nearly 60 percent less likely than those consuming more animal-based protein to show evidence of plaque in the heart’s arteries.

Plaque is made up of fat, cholesterol, calcium, and other substances found in the blood and it can slowly build up and stiffen the arteries, with dangerous consequences.


Study 3: Eating plant-based foods associated with less weight gain

Not all vegetarian foods are created equal — some are healthier than others.

Ah yes, the most popular concern about every diet: weight management. A study carried out over 4 years tracked the body weight among more than 125,000 adults. The study found that diets rich in healthy plants (whole-grains, fruits, vegetables, and nuts) were associated with less weight gain. However, unhealthy plant foods (such as sugars, refined grains, and fries) are associated with more weight gain.

Significantly, you don’t need to fully dedicate yourself to vegetarianism — the more healthy plant-based foods, the better, even if you don’t go all the way.


Study 4: Vegetarian diet associated with reduced risk of heart disease and diabetes

I feel like a broken record already: a vegetarian diet reduces your risk of heart diseases — and diabetes. A study on South Asians living in the US found that vegetarians have a lower body mass index, smaller waist circumference and lower amounts of abdominal fat, lower cholesterol, and lower blood sugar compared to people in the same demographic group who ate meat.

This suggests that the vegetarian diet reduces the risk of heart disease in a number of ways, often interconnected.


Study 5: Eating higher quality plant-based foods associated with lower risk of death

Results from this study are even blunter: if you want to live longer, eat more good plants. Analyzing data from 30,000 US adults, researchers found that the quality of plant-based foods in the diet is more important than the quality of animal-based foods. Opting for better plant-based components of the diet lowered mortality by 30 percent while higher quality animal-based components had little effect on mortality.

The effects were strongest on people with chronic health conditions.


These are just a few of the studies which will be presented at flagship meeting of the American Society for Nutrition, called Nutrition 2018. Overall, the scientific evidence showing the keeps piling up, so if you want to stay healthy, focus more on those plants!

The most expensive things you can eat or drink

Gastronomy is becoming more of a science and less of an art with each passing day, but there are some foods which are just downright unreasonably expensive. This is a list of the most extravagant, exorbitant and expensive foods (the list is not exhaustive, so if there’s anything else you think is worth added here, just contact me).

The most expensive caviar

Price: 7-10.000$ / kg
Where can you find it: Caspian region

Caviar is the expensive food by default, but beluga is the caviar among caviar. It can be produced only by a certain type of sturgeon (Huso Huso) that has been around since the time of the dinosaurs, and it’s best served only when the fish it is extracted from is older than 100 years.

The Beluga sturgeon, however, is an endangered species, and therefore numerous countries, including the US, have banned the import and use of it, but it can still be found in most countries from the former USSR, as well as other countries in the Caspian region.

If eating an endangered and banned species won’t stop you, the price probably will; at 7$/gram, a decent taste will cost about 1500$, which is more than your average night out.

Most expensive omelette

Price: 1.000$
Where can you find it: New York

The Le Parker Meridien restaurant serves the world’s most expensive omelette in the world by far; by so far that in the menu, next to it, there is a challenge that reads “Norma dares you to expense this”. It’s not the 10 eggs that are expensive though, but the lobster in the middle and the 200 grams of caviar.

The white truffle

Price: 5-165.000$ / kg
Where can you find it: almost anywhere in the world

The white truffle is by far the rarest and most expensive mushroom in the world.

It originates from a region in Italy, and their price varies widely. You shouldn’t confuse them with black truffles, which are expensive too, but a whole different league.

Truffles can be eaten in many ways, but I wouldn’t know, as I’ve never had one; as a matter of fact, I only know a single person who has.

The record price for white truffles was set in December 2007, when Macau casino owner Stanley Ho paid US $330,000 for a single specimen weighing 1.5 kg. Just think about that, find one single mushroom, and you’re set for life; but finding one is not so easy. Dogs are trained for years before they can successfully locate such a truffle.

The most expensive pizza

Price: 4.200$
Where can you find it: you can’t

Pizza is a regular dish for most Americans and Europeans especially because it’s good food for a small budget. But this isn’t the case here, of course, because chef Domenico Crolla’s “Pizza Royale 007″ has some absolutely amazing ingredients, such as lobster marinated in cognac, caviar soaked in champagne, sunblush tomato sauce, Scottish smoked salmon, venison medallions, prosciutto, and vintage balsamic vinegar. To top it off, it even has some edible 24-carat gold flakes. The pizza was a one time offer, and it was auctioned on eBay.

The most expensive burger

Price: 5.000$
Where can you find it: Las Vegas

If you’re thinking pizza is too expensive, then why not try a burger ? In this case, you should go for the Fleur 5000 Burger, sold in Vegas; the good thing is, you will also get a 1995 Chateau Petrus from Bordeaux to go with it. The bad thing is that bottle is also a reason why it is so expensive, aside from the kobe beef, truffles and foie gras. If you’re still not impressed, you can quench your curiosity by going to the Mandalay Bay hotel in Las Vegas.

The most expensive bagel

Price: 1000$
Where can you find it: New York

The world’s most expensive bagel can also be found in New York, and why shouldn’t it be one thousand dollars, when it’s made with white truffle cream cheese and goji berry infused Riesling jelly with golden leaves ?

The most expensive ice cream

Price: 1000$
Where can you find it: Manhattan

After a fine meal like the ones above, there should definitely be some extra room for desert – and what better dessert can you have than the premium ice cream made by Serendipity 3 from Manhattan ? Made from Tahiti vanilla, Madagascar vanilla, edible gold flakes and one of the most expensive chocolates in the world, this ice cream will definitely cool you off – and your pockets too.

The most expensive chocolates

Price: 2,600 euro / box
Where can you find it: on the internet

If ice cream isn’t your thing, these chocolate truffles will definitely please your senses. You can buy them online, from the Knipschildt site, at about 3.500$. Created after a secret recipe, their cream is made from 70% highest quality cocoa, as well as black truffles. A box weighs slightly under 400 grams.

The most expensive coffee

Price: 10.000$ / kg
Where can you find it: fancy stores

If you feel the need to wake up, the Kopi Luwak coffee might do the trick for you. The most expensive coffee in the world has an interesting story: it is made from coffee beans which have been eaten by a species of civet and then defecated. Aside from being digested in the civet’s body, it is also dried, roasted and brewed, after which it becomes much more aromatic and much less bitter.

The most expensive Rum

Price: 53.000$ / bottle
Where can you find it: unknown


I don’t know about you, but after this kind of prices, I could definitely use a drink – a strong rum, perhaps? It is unknown just how many bottles of Wray & Nephew White Overproof Rum there still are in the world, but there can’t be too many. No one has sold or bought one in ages and considering its price, I would bet no one has drank one in ages too. Made in 1940, this is the most expensive rum in the world, and one of the most expensive drinks, too. It’s not for your average pirate, that’s for sure.

The most expensive cocktail

Price: 18.000$
Where can you find it: Tokyo

It would have been impossible to have a list such as this one without including Japan in it at least once. The Diamonds Are Forever Martini is a supreme luxury in a (small) glass. It comes with a smooth blend of chilled Grey Goose vodka poured over a one carat diamond, some martini, and a twist of lime. Yeah, the good news is you get to keep the diamond; however, only a handful of such cocktails were bought. Don’t forget to get yours when you go to the Ritz-Carlton hotel in Tokyo.

The most expensive beer

Price: 1.000$
Where can you find it: London

But enough of these fancy drinks ! You can always just go out with the boys for a beer or two, right? Well, not in London, at Bierdorme, where a Vielle Bon Secours costs no less than 1.000$ – guaranteed to make your head spin the next day, and probably many more after that.

The most expensive water

Price: 2144$ / gallon
Where can you find it: Hawaii, Japan

If all else fails, you can always just have a glass of water; except when that water is made from desalinated water with a high mineral content found 2,000 feet down off the coast of Hawaii. It is credited with aiding weight loss, skin tone, and a whole lot of other health benefits. It’s supposed to be so good, that you can actually dilute it with … water. Japanese love this water so much that 80.000 bottles get shipped there every day, even though there is a local alternative processed in the same conditions.