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Ice cream laws face revamp in the battle against obesity in Ireland

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Irish ice cream laws dating back to 1952 are being revised in an effort to fight national obesity levels.

Health Promotion Minister Marcella Corcoran Kennedy has proposed to revoke the current Food Standards (Ice Cream) Regulations dating from 1952.

The planned changes will revise the content of milk-fat, milk solids and sugar content in ice cream.

One of the stipulations in the 1952 regulations states that ice cream must contain at least 10pc by weight of sugar.

This obviously presents problems for any company wishing to reduce the sugar content of its ice cream products, according to the FSAI.

It says the purpose of the proposed regulations is to revoke these compositional standards as soon as possible.

Having consulted other relevant Government departments and official agencies, it is considered that it is no longer fit for purpose and has largely been superseded by EU legislation, Ms Corcoran Kennedy said.

Recent research found that Ireland has the third highest consumption of ice cream per capita in Europe

Source: Ireland’s ice cream laws face revamp in the battle against obesity – Independent.ie

10 Survival Tips That Kept Your Great-Grandparents Alive

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Unless you are fairly young, chances are your great-grandparents already have passed on. But if they were around in today’s tenuous times, our great-grandparents might have a few words of advice for us.

Survival was something most of our ancestors did well, and a few tips from their success could make a real difference in our lives today.

Our great-grandparents probably survived hard times due to a combination of the right skills and knowledge, the right priorities, and the right attitudes. Here is what they might say to us if they could:

Skills and Knowledge

1. Be able to acquire food by multiple means. Learn to grow vegetables, tend fruit and berry orchards, milk dairy cattle and goats, keep laying hens, raise meat animals, and hunt for wild game.

2. Know how to preserve food for leaner seasons by way of canning, smoking, drying and root-cellaring.

3. Learn to make all of your food from scratch, from bread to butter to noodles to jerky to cheese. Even if you do not do all of it annually, develop and keep up the skills.

4. Be able to repair and maintain what you use. Furniture, buildings, engines, equipment, shoes, toys, kitchen utensils—you name it. It is important to take meticulous care of your belongings and fix whatever needs fixing until it is beyond repair. Buy less, fix more.

5. Know how to treat minor injuries and illnesses at home. Sometimes seeking professional medical advice is the best course, but in a survival situation it is valuable to be able to assess and treat problems yourself if needed…

Written by: Kathy Bernier Extreme Survival [ repost: http://www.offthegridnews.com/extreme-survival/10-survival-tips-that-kept-your-great-grandparents-alive/ ] Unless you are fairly young, chances are your great-grandparents already have passed on. But if they were around in today’s tenuous times, our great-grandparents might have a few words of advice for us. Survival was something most of our ancestors did well, and a few […]

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Sugar is the ‘alcohol of the child’, yet we let it dominate the breakfast table 

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With kids consuming half their sugar quota first thing, it’s no wonder they’re getting diabetes and liver disease. We have to fight corporate interests

Breakfast is considered by most nutrition experts, including Public Health England, to be the most important meal of the day. It gets your brain and your metabolism going, and it suppresses the hunger hormone in your stomach so you won’t overeat at lunch. But in our busy lives, it’s easy to turn to what is quick, cheap, or what you can eat on the go. Cold cereal. Instant oatmeal. For those die-hard “I’m gonna serve something hot for breakfast” types, it’s microwaveable breakfast sandwiches. Gotta get out the door now? Granola bars. Protein bars. Yoghurt smoothies.

Sadly, as the National Diet and Nutrition Survey found, what you’re really doing is giving your children a huge sugar load while sending them on their way: half of their daily intake on average. There’s a reason that the World Health Organisationand the United States Department of Agriculture have provided upper limits of sugar – because dietary sugar fries your kids’ liver and brain; just like alcohol.

Alcohol provides calories (7kcal/g), but not nutrition. There’s no biochemical reaction that requires it. When consumed chronically and in high dose, alcohol is toxic, unrelated to its calories or effects on weight. Not everyone who is exposed gets addicted, but enough do to warrant taxation and restriction of access, especially to children. Clearly, alcohol is not a food – it’s a dangerous drug, because it’s both toxic and abused.

Dietary sugar is composed of two molecules: glucose and fructose. Fructose, while an energy source (4kcal/g), is otherwise vestigial to humans; again, there is no biochemical reaction that requires it. But fructose is metabolised in the liver in exactly the same way as alcohol. And that’s why, when consumed chronically and at a high dose, fructose is similarly toxic and abused, unrelated to its calories or effects on weight. And that’s why our children now get the diseases of alcohol (type 2 diabetes, fatty liver disease), without alcohol. Because sugar is the “alcohol of the child”. Also similar to alcohol, sugared beverages are linked to behavioural problems in children

Source: Sugar is the ‘alcohol of the child’, yet we let it dominate the breakfast table | Robert Lustig | Opinion | The Guardian

iPads in the classroom – transforming education or unnecessary distraction? – BelfastTelegraph.co.uk

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For the past eight months, my teenage son has been required to use an iPad for some schoolwork and much of his homework. And it seems he’s not the only one; tablets are now commonplace in schools and some schools are starting to insist all pupils have one.

But there’s been little debate about this new development. And that’s why the ATL teaching union commissioned a major survey on tablets in the classroom.

A total of 376 parents and teachers from across Northern Ireland responded and there was a clear consensus on a number of issues.

Most (78%) believed tablets do have at least some educational value in the classroom, but there was widespread concern about certain significant potential drawbacks.

Some 82% of respondents were worried about the ‘distraction factor’ if pupils were expected to use tablets for homework; will children diligently do their homework when they can check messages or play games on the same devices?

But perhaps the most alarming finding related to child protection; 64% of teaching staff who had educational experience of using tablets felt there was a risk that pupils might access inappropriate material when the devices were used in the classroom.

Some schools are starting to ask or require parents to pay for tablets or other digital devices. Most respondents (71%) firmly opposed any move to make parents pay on the grounds that not all families can afford the cost.

Indeed, a large majority of respondents (81%) wanted official guidance on the use of tablets in schools – so perhaps that can be one of the first tasks for our incoming Education Minister.

So where do parents and schools stand?

Source: iPads in the classroom – transforming education or unnecessary distraction? – BelfastTelegraph.co.uk

Ireland aims to be coding king of the world with school training scheme – Independent.ie

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Ireland aims to be the world leader in a global computer science programme for school children.

Source: Ireland aims to be coding king of the world with school training scheme – Independent.ie

The Hour of Code is a one-hour introduction to computer science, designed to demystify code and show that anybody can learn the basics.

Taking place from December 7-13, the Hour of Code is being coordinated in this country by its Irish partners, Excited – The Digital Learning Movement, with the Irish Independent as its media partners.

The Hour of Code aims to pass on skills to children by introducing 100m students to computer science.

Former junior education minister Ciaran Cannon is the founder of Excited – The Digital Learning Movement.

The Fine Gael TD says the movement has a specific target in mind this year.

“Last year, Ireland staged the second most Hour of Code events per capita in the world. This year we can be first,” he said.

Facebook Will Now Notify You If It Thinks Your Account Is Being Hacked By The NSA : PERSONAL TECH : Tech Times

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Facebook has announced it will send a notification to users if it believes that suspected attackers working in behalf of a nation-state have compromised their accounts. The company believes these attacks are more dangerous and advanced than others.

Source: Facebook Will Now Notify You If It Thinks Your Account Is Being Hacked By The NSA : PERSONAL TECH : Tech Times

Facebook has incorporated a feature that its users do not really want to see in action: a notification that will alert them if the company believes that suspected attackers working in the interest of a nation-state have gained unauthorized access to their accounts.

A blog post has been shared by Facebook on Oct. 16, saying the protection of its users accounts is more important than anything else, which is why it continuously monitors malevolent activities and provides a multitude of options to safeguard user accounts.

“While we have always taken steps to secure accounts that we believe to have been compromised, we decided to show this additional warning if we have a strong suspicion that an attack could be government-sponsored,” says Alex Stamos, chief security officer at Facebook.

Forest rangers discover 26 elephant carcasses in Zimbabwe | News | DW.COM | 14.10.2015

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Park rangers in Zimbabwe have discovered the bodies of 26 elephants who died of cyanide poisoning. The discovery comes a week after poachers killed 14 elephants using the same method.

Source: Forest rangers discover 26 elephant carcasses in Zimbabwe | News | DW.COM | 14.10.2015

Park rangers in Zimbabwe have discovered the bodies of 26 elephants who died of cyanide poisoning. The discovery comes a week after poachers killed 14 elephants using the same method…

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