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The year 2020 has been an eye-opener in many ways. Not only did it lead to introspection in general, but it also changed quite eating habits, fitness, and cooking styles. Cooking food is no longer a scheduled task just about cooking and eating, there is awareness, conscience awakening, and science attached to it today. Right from raw vegetables, meat, and even the oils that are used, consumers today have questions about what they are consuming, the source of raw materials, the formulation, and production.
Oil is an essential ingredient used in Indian cooking be it for frying, stir-frying, shallow frying, pan-frying, grilling, barbequing, baking, kneading there isn’t a component of cooking where oil doesn’t feature, even if it means a slight drizzle. It’s where it all starts and ends. For generations, the traditional mindset in using a particular kind and brand of oil has had a very hand me down’ approach, something that has been followed ritualistically until recently. Sunflower and Groundnut oil have constituted a majority in the cooking oil segment followed closely by Mustard oil.
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Today, there are a variety of cooking oils available in the Indian market and thanks to exposure to international standards and a whole new category of olive oils. Indian consumers are spoilt for choice but are they making the right one? How does one know the oil they’ve been using isn’t doing more harm than benefitting? While there have been a few constants that have proven to be ideal choices for the palate and health, there are others whose properties are second to none but haven’t gained widespread popularity. One such variant is Olive Pomace oil.
Olive oil actually comes in a number of forms, color, taste, and acidity levels along with three variants: Extra-Virgin Olive Oil, Refined Olive Oil, and Olive Pomace Oil. Extra-Virgin Olive Oil is a cold-pressed olive oil with acidity below 0.3 percent. Owing to its aroma and flavor, it is suitable for making salads, dressings, flavorings, or condiments for salads, pasta, rice, vegetables, meat, and fish. It is also rich in antioxidants when eaten in raw/cold form. However, it may not the right choice for typical Indian e high temperature – cooking.
Olive Pomace oil is, however, the right olive oil for Indian cooking. Because of its extraction process, Olive Pomace oil is stable at high temperatures and contains higher Tocopherol and Squalene than even extra virgin olive oil. Tocopherol and Squalene are forms of Vitamin E which have anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties for the body and are great for the skin. Other properties such as its fatty acid profile (eg. mono-unsaturated fatty acid) are the same as that jar of extra virgin olive oil that graces the aisle at the supermarket. In fact, it has the same composition as extra virgin olive oil. What’s more, it is completely neutral in taste, therefore, making Olive Pomace oil liquid gold for healthy Indian Cooking.
Olive Pomace Oil is the perfect companion for desi food. It is a light oil with a neutral taste and flavor. Indian food encompasses a wide variety of regional and traditional cuisines and they all vary significantly from each other. Olive Pomace Oil can be used for all Indian cooking and the taste is quite incredible.
While we face the second wave of the pandemic, it’s prudent to stay fit, eat right and follow a healthy lifestyle. The choice of cooking oil plays a major part in this. Choosing an oil that has the necessary fats and zeroes cholesterol that is helpful for weight loss and maintaining a low-calorie diet is what one needs today. Olive Pomace oil is 80 percent monosaturated that can lower the cholesterol level. Monosaturated fats are healthy fats with a fatty acid profile (high MUFA) like other Olive Oils found in olive oil, avocados, and certain nuts. Olive Pomace oil also brings the additional benefit of Vitamin E for better immunity and tissue repair with Vitamin K for better bone density and health.
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It is a light, neutral in taste, and healthier option than other edible oils, and is stable at high temperatures. This helps beat the myth that Olive oil is not good for Indian cooking. What’s more, the great thing about Olive Pomace oil is that since it is absorbed less by food, it is great for healthy cooking and affordable at the same time, as it will be consumed less.
Apart from its uses in the kitchen, Olive Pomace oil can be used to treat skin problems and hair problems by using a little bit of it on the damaged scalp to treat dryness. Similarly, one can also use it in the bath to rejuvenate dry skin. The Pomace oil is cost-effective in comparison to the other grades of olive oil but when compared to the cost of regular soya bean, sunflower, or peanut oil, it is priced at a premium. So, the next time you go grocery shopping, take a leap of faith and grab that can of Olive Pomace oilet’s a health decision that’s much overdue! (IANS/JC)
BEIJING — Chinese organizers have confirmed participants in next year's Winter Olympics will be strictly isolated from the general population and could face expulsion for violating COVID-19 restrictions.
Vice mayor and Beijing 2022 organizing committee official Zhang Jiandong told reporters Wednesday that those taking part in the games beginning Feb. 4 must remain in a "closed loop" for training, competing, transport, dining and accommodation.
A strict Olympic bubble has long been on the books, but Beijing has now made it official in keeping with its zero-tolerance approach to the pandemic. Athletes and other participants will also be tested regularly for the coronavirus before and during the Games. Family, spectators and sponsors from outside the country will not be allowed to attend.
"All participants of the Games and our Chinese staff and volunteers will implement the same policy," Zhang said. "They will be strictly separated from the external society.
"Those who do not comply with the epidemic prevention regulations may face severe consequences such as warning, temporary or permanent cancellation of registration, temporary or permanent disqualification or expulsion from the competition, and other punishment."
All participants must have been fully vaccinated at least 14 days prior to their departure for China.
China has enforced strict rules on mask wearing, quarantines and contact tracing that have largely succeeded in eliminating the local transmission of COVID-19, but imported cases and domestic infections continue to appear in daily reports.
"Indeed, epidemic prevention and control is the biggest challenge for us to host the Winter Olympic Games," Zhang told a news conference.
Wednesday marked 100 days until the Beijing Games. Organizers have held test events featuring international athletes at Olympic venues under strict conditions.
Japan imposed restrictive rules and an Olympic bubble during the July 23-Aug. 8 Summer Games in Tokyo, which had been postponed by 12 months because of the pandemic. (VOA/RN)
Keywords: China, Winter Olympics, Closed Loop, Epidemic Prevention
A cheap antidepressant reduced the need for hospitalization among high-risk adults with COVID-19 in a study that was looking for existing drugs that could be repurposed to treat coronavirus.
Researchers tested the pill used for depression and obsessive-compulsive disorder because it was known to reduce inflammation and looked promising in smaller studies.
They've shared the results with the U.S. National Institutes of Health, which publishes treatment guidelines, and they hope for a World Health Organization recommendation.
"If WHO recommends this, you will see it widely taken up," said study co-author Dr. Edward Mills of McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, adding that many poor nations have the drug readily available. "We hope it will lead to a lot of lives saved."
The pill, called fluvoxamine, would cost $4 for a course of COVID-19 treatment. By comparison, antibody IV treatments cost about $2,000 and Merck's experimental antiviral pill for COVID-19 is about $700 per course. Some experts predict various treatments eventually will be used in combination to fight the coronavirus.
Researchers tested the antidepressant in nearly 1,500 Brazilians recently infected with coronavirus who were at risk of severe illness because of other health problems, such as diabetes. About half took the antidepressant at home for 10 days, the rest got dummy pills. They were tracked for four weeks to see who landed in the hospital or spent extended time in an emergency room when hospitals were full.
In the group that took the drug, 11% needed hospitalization or an extended ER stay, compared to 16% of those on dummy pills.
The results, published Wednesday in the journal Lancet Global Health, were so strong that independent experts monitoring the study recommended stopping it early because the results were clear.
Questions remain about the best dosing, whether lower risk patients might also benefit and whether the pill should be combined with other treatments.
The larger project looked at eight existing drugs to see if they could work against the pandemic virus. The project is still testing a hepatitis drug, but all the others — including metformin, hydroxychloroquine and ivermectin — haven't panned out.
The cheap generic and Merck's COVID-19 pill work in different ways and "may be complementary," said Dr. Paul Sax of Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, who was not involved in the study. Earlier this month, Merck asked regulators in the U.S. and Europe to authorize its antiviral pill. (VOA/RN)
Keywords: Antidepressant, Early COVID, Pandemic, Testing project
Even one of the world's most powerful tech CEOs can forget to unmute himself during a video chat. For Alphabet and Google CEO Sundar Pichai, one such embarrassing moment came as he began the chat with Kermit The Frog, a character from Muppets, on Google Meet recently. Sharing the two-minute video clip on Twitter on Wednesday, Pichai said: "Always remember to unmute thanks @KermitTheFrog for joining us on @YouTube #DearEarth and chatting about some of our shared interests."
The video was part of YouTube's "Dear Earth" series which aims to address climate challenges. "Hi there, Sundar," said Kermit, a Muppet character created in 1955, to which, Pichai replied but he was inaudible as he was on mute. "Sundar, I think you are on mute. Wow, can't believe I am talking to the CEO of Google, and he is on mute," Kermit said.
At that point, Pichai realised he was on mute. "Sorry, Kermit. I was on mute, and I've done it a few times this year like everyone else. I'm a huge fan of you and the muppets," replied the Google CEO. The video chat went smooth after the opening glitch, and Kermit The Frog and Pichai spoke about climate issues the world is grappling with. (IANS/ MBI)
Keywords: Google CEO Sundar Pichai, google meet, Kermit, dear earth, Alphabet and Google CEO.