IFA News and Opinion
Issue Date:  September 1, 2011

Tangy tenderloin tempts tasters

Pork tenderloin has become one of the better meat buys at the grocery store.

You can roast the whole loin, grill loin cuts, use them in casseroles, or bread and deep fry them.

Popular in both Indiana and Iowa, many experts credit the birth of the pork tenderloin sandwich (snowbirds come home just to get one) to Nicholas Freinstein, known as the father of this tenderized heartland creation. He opened Nick's Kitchen in Huntington, Indiana, in1908 after years of peddling his sandwiches on the street.

If you're tired of the breaded variety, exhausted your recipes and want something new, try this one which incorporates a glaze of peppery barbecue sauce.

Tangy Pork Tenderloin

4 half-inch thick pork loin cuts
1 cup chopped sweet or red onion
1 1/2 cups vinegar
1/2 cup of commercial barbecue sauce
2 cups brown sugar
10 dashes Louisiana hot sauce
2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
1/2 cup Frank's Sweet Chili Sauce.

Combine all ingredients except the meat and onion in a mixing bowl and stir until well mixed. Chill in the refrigerator overnight.

Braise the tenderloin in a skillet until lightly browned. Transfer to a baking pan.

Stir the sauce again and place two tablespoons on each piece of meat. Spoon onions on each coated piece.

Bake at 350 degrees until the onions caramelized and the sauce solidifies into a thick glaze. A piece of provolone or Swiss cheese may be added.

Serve on sesame seed or onion buns, or on a plate as an entre. The recipe can be doubled for additional diners or double portions.

Fall brings an onslaught of allergies

Autumn is the favorite time of the year for many of us. Colorful foliage abounds. Humidity drops. We open our windows to let in the breeze and spend long hours outdoors hiking or raking up the falling leaves. Unfortunately, unseen allergens lurk in the crisp, dry air and in all those leaves.

Pollen allergies affect nearly 10 percent of our population, approximately 62 million people. They are the fifth ranking chronic disease and cost U.S. businesses and our health care system nearly $8 billion annually.

There's no reason to dread the arrival of autumn, however, if we reduce exposure to pollens and molds, thus lessening our symptoms of sneezing, itchy and watery eyes, dry throat, congestion and runny noses, all of which can impair our ability to perform well at school or work.

Ragweed pollen is one of the most common reasons for fall allergies. But pollen from other plants, trees, and grass can also trigger symptoms, as can mold.

Tips for managing fall allergies:

  • Leave both house and car windows shut.
  • Remove clothing worn outdoors after raking, hiking or mowing.
  • Remove shoes at the door and go barefoot in house or wear slippers.
  • Shower or rinse off exposed skin after being outdoors.
  • Use a saline nasal wash to remove allergens.
  • Use a dehumidifier to decrease indoor humidity.
  • Clean visible mold in showers with a diluted bleach solution.
  • Wear a face mask and goggles when doing yard work.
  • Use an antihistamine to reduce or eliminate the effects of histamine.
  • Drink plenty of water; rehydration effectively eliminates toxins.

    Chuckles Corner

  • FDA's new cigarette warnings:

    New shocking cigarette warnings take aim at the tobacco addiction

    The Food and Drug Administration hopes the new graphic designs on cigarette packs will encourage more people to quit. They include images of corpses, cancer-ridden lungs, and a guy exhaling smoke through a tracheotomy hole in his neck.

    It's the greatest effort since the surgeon general's warning became mandatory on cigarette packaging in 1965. Its goal is to reduce cigarette smoking by 20 percent.

    In 1965, 42.4 percent of adults smoked, 51.9 percent of men and 33.9 percent of women. By 2009, the number of smokers fell to 20.6 percent of all adults, 23.5 percent of men and 17.9 percent of women.

    Health and Human Services secretary Kathleen Sebelius say the images are frank, honest and powerful depictions of the health risks of smoking. Everyone who picks up a cigarette will know exactly what risks they take. The government hopes to cut the percentage of smokers across the USA by 12 percent by 2020. That would reduce the number of deaths caused by tobacco use, which now stands at about 443,000 a year.

    The graphic packages, advocates say, will help children decide not to smoke. Right now, 2,000 children under age 18 start to smoke every day. By grade 12, 25.2 percent of kids are smokers.

    According to the American Lung Association, these methods work best to reduce smoking: tobacco tax increases; smoking bans in public places; toll-free quit lines; and comprehensive educational and prevention programs

    Sweet Imagination: Mind over spoon

    Luscious chocolate sundae. Just thinking about it makes your mouth water.

    New information suggests that the surge of dopamine you get from the photo, is stronger that the sugar blast you get with the spoon.

    In Duke University studies on food addiction, they have found the pleasure release in reward centers of the brain is greater when people anticipate a certain food than when they actually eat it.

    Food addiction and drug use, they say, both result in dopamine release. The dopamine release is similar to the reward anticipated from either one.

    Not many people actually suffer from food addiction. Still, almost everyone has been tempted by a photo of a dinner or treat only to be disappointed after eating it.

    In the study of lean-to-obese people, researchers studied their brain activity in two ways: anticipation in response to food cues, such as viewing a picture of a milk shake, cake or glass of water, and actual consumption of the food pictured. Surprisingly, participants showed greater brain activity in anticipation of something good to eat (the reward) than when eating it. People who didn't qualify as food addicts responded in the same way

    Sugar vs. corn syrup

    A growing number of restaurants are retooling their recipes in order to replace ingredients containing high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS).

    The Mayo Clinic says table sugar and HFCS are chemically similar, but some researchers believe the body reacts differently to the corn syrup.

    In an Environmental Health study, some HFCS samples contained small amounts of potentially harmful mercury. That study was done in 2008, and most HFCS formulas have changed since then. But some HFCS is made outside the U.S.

    Many food and drink makers are taking no chances. In the last two years, brands from Wheat Thins to Pepsi have introduced new recipes or products with sugar instead of HFCS.

    One thing no one questions: both HFCS and sugar have the same number of calories. If you're gaining weight, switching to products containing table sugar won't help.

    'Coming out' not advised in some cases

    For gay, lesbian and bisexual people, keeping their sexual orientation a secret can lower self-esteem and cause depression. In general, coming out to family and friends can be very helpful.

    New studies reported by the Associated Press, however, show that's not always the case. It depends on how supportive the environment is at home, work or school.

    If they have a disapproving family or judgmental co-workers, gay, lesbian and bisexual people did not get the benefits of coming out.

    Study results show that in many cases, keeping sexual orientation a secret from all but a select few may be the healthiest answer.

    Doctors prescribe exercise for osteoarthritis

    In times past, osteoarthritis was considered a problem of old age. Now it's showing up in the joints of people age 40 and younger, because more people are overweight or have sports injuries.

    Doctors at Stanford University point out that each extra pound of body weight adds the equivalent of four pounds of weight to the knees. Even a small loss of weight can cut in half the risk of knee arthritis in women, who are at higher risk than men.
    Studies show combined with exercises aimed at improving joint function and building up muscles to support the joints, can improve health and quality of life, compared to medication alone.

    Osteoarthritis occurs when the cartilage that cushions the spaces between joints wears away.

    Yoga, tai chi, and basic hamstring, shoulder, neck and back stretches are good exercise choices. When stretching, reach for the sky and your toes.

    Aerobic activity such as walking, biking, swimming, and water aerobics are good choices

    Insurers now cover the cost of immunizations

    Beginning this year, health insurers must cover 100 percent of the cost of 10 vaccines recommended for adults by the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention (some existing plans are exempt).

    Adults often miss immunizations that can help keep them healthy. Shots you might need include those for influenza, pneumonia, the booster shot for tetanus, pertussis and diphtheria, and the shot for shingles if you are age 60 or older.

    For a list of covered vaccines, visit cdc.gov/vaccines.

    The wholefood story

    Why is the whole orange better for you than its juice, or the whole apple better than apple sauce? Because whole foods contain a food matrix in which all of the components work together. That means you can absorb all the individual nutrients better.

    Whole grains are a good example. Scientists have found that natural phytonutrients are embedded in the fiber matrix of the grain. They can help lower your risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes and certain types of cancer, according to New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical College.

    New melanoma treatment

    Bristol-Myers Squibb has a new treatment for melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer. The new drug will carry the brand name Yervoy. It's approved by the Food and Drug Administration for treatment of cancer that has spread to other parts of the body.

    The treatment gives new validation to efforts to attack cancer by enlisting the body's own immune system.

    Infusion of the drug is delivered by three intravenous drips.

    'Move Outside' for fun and health

    National Public Lands Day offers every adult and child in the United States a chance to enjoy the outdoors while doing meaningful work. They will be keeping the environment of our public lands safe and healthy.

    Set for Sept. 24 this year, the theme is named "Let's Move Outside," by First Lady Michelle Obama. The program is led by the Department of the Interior, the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers, and the U. S. Department of Agriculture's Forest Service.

    As a special feature of this year's event, 100 water quality testing kits have been issued to site managers for checking sites across the land. The hands-on volunteer effort offers a way to enjoy familyhealthy activities and fun while promoting the stewardship of the lands, which are a sacred trust for all our citizens.

    More than 170,000 volunteers are expected to participate in theclean-up. They will also be planting trees, repairing damaged hiking trails, and improving wildlife habitats and learning more about nature.

    With the growing concern of childhood obesity, it is also a day that can promote exercise and healthy dietary habits.

    Under the direction of site managers, volunteers assist in publicity for recruiting and managing workers as well as educating all concerned. It's satisfying to give something back to the land.

    One special event this year, on September 24 and 25, will be California's Fall Mountain Epic. It will feature the opening of the newly-created Mills Creek Trail in the Lake Basin Recreation Area near Gleneagles. Activities will include trail rides, swimming, working on the lake basin, fly fishing, canoeing and camping.

    If you and your friends are interested in participating in an event, sign up at a local or national park.