The Handy Nutrition Answer Book

The Handy Nutrition Answer Book


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The Handy Nutrition Answer Book by Patricia Barnes-Svarney, Thomas E. Svarney

Your fitness, health, and well-being depend on food and proper nutrition. Yet, knowing what is in the foods we eat, understanding the differences between good and bad fat, learning which foods are good sources of vitamins, keeping up on the latest scientific discoveries, or discerning the effectiveness of different diets can be challenging. To help answer these questions there's The Handy Nutrition Answer Book. Additionally, the book scrutinizes the pros, cons, and effectiveness of the biggest, most popular, and trendiest diets on the market today.

This handy reference examines, explains, and traces the basics of nutrition, the value of vitamins, minerals, fats, proteins, the science behind food-processing and the modern food industry. It traces nutrition—and nutritional misconceptions—throughout history. It explains how to read food labels and what to watch for in food additives. From the newsworthy to the practical and from the medical to the historical, this entertaining and informative book brings the complexity of food and healthy nutrition into focus through the well-researched answers to nearly 900 common questions, such as …

How do our muscles obtain energy?
What is a calorie in terms of nutrition?
How are calories measured?
Why do vegetarians need to know about complementary proteins?
How does a person interpret how much fat to eat based on the daily calories they want to consume?
What is omega-9?
How have trans fats in foods changed in the past—and how might they change in the future?
Can dense carbohydrates that are high in fat and calories affect our sleep?
What are some “healthier” natural sweeteners?
What recent study indicated that red wine and dark chocolate are not as healthy as we think?
What are some of the worst ways to cook vegetables that destroy nutrients?
What is the Maillard reaction?
What recent study showed how beer can help grilled foods?
How does human taste work?
Does the percent of water in our system change as we age?
What’s the difference between gluten sensitivity, celiac disease, and wheat intolerance?
What “sugar” can act like a laxative?
What did the ancient Roman soldiers eat?
Why did so many men die from starvation during the American Civil War?
What does the word “natural” mean on a label?
Why will food labels change in the near future?
What are genetically modified organisms (GMOs)?
Is there a controversy concerning farmed fish versus wild-caught fish?
What is irradiation of food?
Why is high fructose corn syrup so controversial?
How can diet help with premenopausal symptoms in women?
Can soy products lower my cholesterol?
Why do some people seem to eat whatever they want—and still lose or maintain their weight?

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781578594849
Publisher: Visible Ink Press
Publication date: 03/17/2015
Series: Handy Answer Book Series
Pages: 384
Product dimensions: 7.13(w) x 9.13(h) x (d)

About the Author

Patricia Barnes-Svarney is a science and science-fiction writer. Over the past few decades, she has written or coauthored more than 35 books, including Visible Ink Press’ The Handy Biology Answer Book, The Handy Math Answer Book, and The Handy Ocean Answer Book. She is the author of When the Earth Moves: Rogue Earthquakes, Tremors, and Aftershocks, and she was also the editor/author of the award-winning New York Public Library Science Desk Reference.

Thomas E. Svarney is a scientist who has written extensively about the natural world. His books, with Patricia Barnes-Svarney, include Visible Ink Press’ The Handy Biology Answer Book, The Handy Math Answer Book, and The Handy Ocean Answer Book, and he is also the author of Skies of Fury: Weather Weirdness around the World and The Oryx Guide to Natural History.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vii

Photo Credits viii

Introduction ix

The Basics of Nutrition: Micronutrients 1

Nutrient Basics 1

Micronutrients 3

The Basics of Nutrition: Macronutrients and Non-Nutrients 39

Macronutrients 1

Proteins 42

Fats and Fatty Acids 45

Carbohydrates 53

Antioxidants 69

Bioflavonoids (Flavonoids) 73

Food Chemistry and Nutrition 77

Foods Defined 77

Inside Meats 78

Inside Vegetables, Fruits, and Legumes 83

Cooking Foods 92

Cooking Vegetables and Legumes 95

Cooking Meat 100

Nutrition in Eating and Drinking Choices 103

The Basics of Eating 103

Seeing, Chewing, and Tasting 104

Digestion 107

Is It Good for You? 116

Herbs, Spices, and Nutrition 121

Beverages and Nutrition 128

Water and Us 137

Food Preservation and Nutrition 141

Early Food Preservation 141

Preserving Foods by Cold Storage and Freezing 143

Preserving Foods by Drying, Smoking, and Salting 147

Preserving Foods by Aging, Fermentation, Yeasts, Pickling, and Curdling 150

Preserving Foods by Canning 157

Other Food Preservation Methods 162

Nutrition and Allergies, Illnesses, and Diseases 167

Nutrition and the Immune System 167

Food Allergies and Intolerances 171

Overweight Problems and Obesity 176

Foodborne Illnesses 180

Digestive Illnesses and Diseases 186

Cancer, Diabetes, and Other Illnesses 190

Nutrition and Your Organs 198

Nutrition and the Mouth 203

Foods and Certain Interactions 205

Nutrition Throughout the Centuries 207

The Food Chain 207

Early Human Ancestors and Food 210

Later Foods and Nutrition 215

Nutrition in Religion and Cultures 219

Nutrition and Crisis 226

Modern Nutrition 233

Food Safety 239

Food Labeling 244

Nutrition, Food, and the Future 253

Controversies with Food, Beverages, and Nutrition 259

Problems with Additives and Drugs in Food 259

Genetic Manipulation and Food 264

Major Controversies with Foods 267

Problems with Beverages 276

Water Controversies 279

Major Problems with Nutrients 281

Problems with Supplements 283

Nutrition Throughout Life 287

General Nutrition 287

Nutrition for Infants and Pregnant and Lactating Women 293

Nutrition for Children, Teens, and Young Adults 299

Nutrition in Adulthood and Older 303

Nutrition and You 309

Your Nutrition, Health, and Numbers 309

You and Supplements 314

Nutrition and Food Myths … or Not 316

How Foods Affect You 322

You, Nutrition, and the Internet 325

Appendix 1 Food Safety Websites 333

Appendix 2 Nutrition Websites 335

Appendix 3 Comparing Diets 337

Further Reading 353

Glossary 355

Index 365

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