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Too much calcium bad for the heart, study finds

Calcium supplements. (Media Credit/Ragesoss via Wikimedia Commons)

Too much calcium in one’s diet could raise the risk of a heart attack, new research suggests.

During an 11-year European cancer and nutrition study, Swiss scientists looked at the health of 24,000 participants, MSNBC reports. The results of the study were published Wednesday in Heart, a British cardiology journal.

The study found that in some people calcium protected against heart disease, but that there was an increased number of heart attacks among those who consumed a large amount of calcium.

Dr. Ethel Siris of New York-Presbyterian Columbia told MSNBC that “People think more is better,” but in this case, “more is not better. Enough is enough.”

MSNBC reports that 22 percent of American adults take calcium supplements. The FDA recommends that adults aged 19 to 50 consume 1,000 milligrams (mg) of calcium daily, and that adults over 50 consume 1,200 mg. The FDA says that the average American doesn’t get enough calcium, but warns that more than 2,500 mg of calcium a day is “too much.”

Food News

Day-boat fish available at Boston farmers’ markets

In a nostalgic twist on the outdoor market, Boston’s farmers’ markets will now feature fresh, local, day-boat fish for sale.

Mayor Thomas M. Menino’s Office of Food Initiatives announced the venture Wednesday, as the program began on the City Hall Plaza market and will expand from there. The City Hall market is steps from historic Faneuil Hall, where this type of person-to-person exchange took place in yesteryear.

“For the first time since the original Faneuil Hall Market Place closed its doors in the mid-1900s, Boston residents, workers, and visitors will be able to purchase fresh, healthy day-boat fish in a vibrant urban market setting,” Mayor Menino said. “This is truly an exciting program that expands access to healthy foods and represents a culinary option that is unique to Boston.”

Massachusetts is known for its seafood industry, but consumer-level access to day-boat fish is hard to come by, making the city’s fish pilot program pretty exciting if you’re a foodie.

This pilot program is a partnership between the Mayor’s Office of Food Initiatives, the City’s Inspectional Services Department, the Boston Collaborative for Food & Fitness, Red’s Best Seafood and Cape Cod Fish Share, which will be vending at the various Farmers Market sites.

“Red’s Best is excited about the opportunity to facilitate the connection between local fishermen and the general public through Boston’s Farmers’ Markets. The Mayor and his office have done a wonderful job putting this together and the entire city will benefit,” said Jared Auerbach, Chief Executive Officer of Red’s Best Seafood. “The Boston Farmers’ Markets will allow us to showcase the amazing local seafood that is thriving in our backyard.”

Click here for a list of Farmers’ Market locations that will feature the fish.

Food News Restaurants

French Food Tips from Brasserie JO Executive Chef Nicholas Calias

“Forget about dieting,” advises Brasserie JO’s Executive Chef Nicholas Calias who knows a thing or deux about the French way of cooking and eating. Take a page from the French way of cooking and you can trade diet books for a naturally healthy lifestyle. Here are some tips (with inspiration from The French Women Don’t Get Fat, The Secret of Eating for Pleasure):

1.       Use the best natural, local ingredients:

Allendale Farms, Costa Produce, Domestic Lamb, Grass Fed Beef’

2.       Focus on quality rather than quantity, enjoying one portion of a great dish rather than doubling up on processed foods

Recommended dish: French Lemon Chicken, Couscous, Crispy Almond Wrapped Asparagus (Recipe below)

3.       Eat consciously and slowly, savoring each mouthful

“Turn off the television and phone, and focus on the meal in front of you and your dining partner(s).”

4.       Allow yourself a glass of wine – especially red, which is known for the benefits of the antioxidant reservatrol

Chef’s recommendation: Trimbach Riesling-Alsacian White

5.       Enjoy dessert in small quantity, eating it slowly and enjoying it more

Whole Wheat Crepes, Flambé Strawberries, Yogurt, Toasted Pine Nuts

6.       Eat real cheese and fresh bread, avoiding processed, and it will prevent later snacking (if at a meal) or enjoy it as a healthier alternative to junk food snacks

Cheese Fondue, Crisp,  Fresh, Local Vegetables, Apples, Baguette

7.       Drink plenty of water

“This will aid digestion, speed your metabolism, and promote weight loss,” says Chef Nick.

8.       Forgive your lapses

“Indulge if you must and then return to your healthy way of eating,” Chef Nick allows.

Don’t miss Chef Nick’s recipe for French Lemon Chicken with Couscous and Crispy Almond Filo Wrapped Asparagus!