Hannah’s Reflection

What interests me about food is the effect of food on society, the economy, and the environment.  I look at food as a part of the greater human connection to other people and the planet.  At MadSciMag, I saw some very interesting scientific videos and blogs that taught me about the importance of presenting science in a way that is funny, artistic, and sensually engaging.  I hope to present my own scientific research in this way.

People are hesitant about citing overeating as a cause of diabetes.  People feel offended by accusations that their medical problems may the fault to their diet ,especially in the weight sensitive American society.  However, overeating is not the same as being overweight although one can lead to the other.  It is possible to be skinny and still overeat.  Overeating is eating more food than is good for your body, or eating a disproportionate amount of certain foods, specifically sugar in the case of diabetes.  In the human body, when blood sugar is too high, a hormone called insulin is released, triggering the body cells to absorb the extra sugar.  Genetic causes are significant in triggering diabetes, especially Type 1 diabetes, which is an autoimmune response.  However, Type 2 diabetes is caused by insulin resistance.  Insulin is a drug that specifically affects your body, and resistance to a drug comes from  being exposed to so much of that drug that it no longer affects you.  That suggests that it is possible to consume so much sugar that you make enough insulin to become resistant to it.  According to the American Heart Association, for a 2,000 calorie a day diet 35g or 9 teaspoons of sugar a day is the health amount to eat.  Most Americans eat 22 teaspoons of sugar a day, more than twice the recommended amount.  Though it not always right to blame people’s medical problems on their lifestyles, diabetes is clearly one of many problems caused by a health diet.

Emily’s Reflection

What interests me about the topic of food is unveiling lies in advertising and letting people know ways to eat food that’s better for you. I also wonder why is there science in food at all… not that there isn’t science naturally in everything, but that there is a science to food production. People alter food so it’s not just natural anymore. It’s more synthetic. It’s more altered by humans. We are getting away from what we’re supposed to eat naturally, and that’s not healthy. And people deserve to know what they’re eating. Today I learned about blogging, and about communicating science. I want to communicate science to the public in an interesting way, not in a boring way. I want to communicate it in a way that makes it easy to connect to and is interesting. After all, science is essentially the study of how stuff works… shouldn’t that be interesting? Wouldn’t you like to know everything? So my goal is to communicate it in a way that makes people want to think, and not in a way that  makes them feel forced to think.

My favorite forms of media communication would probably be videos and blogs. I like videos the best, they’re fun and you can do a lot with them. Blogs you can do a lot with, if you’re not required to follow a technical layout. I want to educate anyone from my age to adults. Teenagers can understand a lot, even if they don’t get credit for it, but I would also want to target an adult audience. I WANT TO EXPOSE MISLEADINGS!

In my own presentations, along with informing people, I want to show people opportunities that are easily accessible to them because I think that one of the best ways to implement change is to show other people how they can change things without making a huge commitment.

Rabia’s Reflection

I learned that diabetes affects every part of your body. I also learned that the drinks that we think are healthy, because they have no fat, are actually really unhealthy because they contain a lot of sugar. Also, on a daily basis people drinks at least 2 sodas a day which is really bad for their health. And we should be careful while we are eating: instead of drinking and eating unhealthy we should try to eat more healthy foods, like vegetables, milk, juices, and fruits.

Zenia’s Reflection

Fruit contains fructose, but as any food pyramid or suggested intake ratios will tell you, fruit is okay. How is that possible if fructose is almost always bad? This is because fruit, in its natural form, contains fiber. Fructose doesn’t provide a satiety alert to let your brain know to tell you to stop eating, but fiber does this to a high degree. This is why you can eat fruit—despite the fructose content—without experiencing the same problems as, say, drinking a sugary soda. This is why fruit can actually be beneficial. The same goes for processed sugar. Sugar doesn’t exist naturally as sparkly white crystals, but as a really tough stick called sugar cane. It isn’t until you process the sugar cane that you lose all the fiber it contains. Without the fiber, you only have the tasty but problematic part of the original food. That’s why processed sugars can cause problems.