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Sugar content of most yogurts above recommended limits, study says

Yogurt has long been touted as a healthy alternative to candy or other sweets. 

Studies have found yogurt is a good source of probiotics, protein, calcium, iodine and vitamin B.

>> Read more trending news 

new study in BMJ (formerly the British Medical Journal), however, has determined most supermarket yogurt is not as healthy as people think, because of its sugar content. 

Dietary guidelines in the United States and United Kingdom recommend low-fat, low-sugar dairy products, and researchers wanted to test how well yogurt products adhered to those standards. BMJ especially wanted to look at yogurts marketed to children, because children under age 3 in the U.K. consume more yogurt than any other age group.

To determine “low fat” and “low sugar,” BMJ researchers used European Union regulations: 3 grams of fat per 100 grams or less of yogurt, 1.5 grams or less for drinks, and a maximum of 5 grams of total sugars per 100 grams.

For this study, researchers looked at the nutritional content of 921 supermarket yogurts and yogurt products. The products were then divided in to eight categories: children's; dairy alternatives, such as soy; desserts; drinks; flavored; fruit; natural/Greek; and organic.

The worst offenders were products in the flavored, fruit, organic and children’s categories, which had a median sugar content between 10.8 and 13.1 grams per 100 grams. As Popular Science pointed out, “100 grams is about 3.5 ounces, and a standard yogurt cup in the U.S. is 5 or 5.3 ounces.”

That means one of those tiny yogurt cups is giving you about half your recommended sugar intake for the day. The recommended daily sugar intake is 25 grams for women and 38 grams for men.

The unsweetened, plain yogurts — Greek and natural — contained only 5 grams of sugar per 100 grams of product, which is healthy.

BMJ researchers found that "while yogurt may be less of a concern than soft drinks and fruit juices, the chief sources of free sugars in both children and adults' diets, what is worrisome is that yogurt, as a perceived 'healthy food,' may be an unrecognised source of free/added sugars in the diet."

They concluded that "not all yogurts are as healthy as perhaps consumers perceive them, and reformulation for the reduction of free sugars is warranted."

Popular Science compiled data from U.S. markets as a comparison. The healthiest yogurts in its study were Chobani whole milk plain and Chobani nonfat strawberry, with 5.0 and 5.3 grams of sugar, respectively.

The worst offenders were Brown Cow whole milk strawberry and Dannon lowfat strawberry on the bottom yogurts. Each contained 22 grams of sugar, or nearly an entire day’s recommended intake.

Hello Kitty Cafe opens next week in California

A new Hello Kitty cafe opening in California next week will offer patrons two dining options, the Orange County Register reported.

>> Read more trending news 

The Hello Kitty Grand Café Sanrio opens Sept. 14 at the Irvine Spectrum Center. A casual cafe with seating for 12 will be available for customers to order coffee, blended drinks and sweets, the newspaper reported. Hello Kitty merchandise also will be available.

The Bow Room will offer a more formal dining experience. The reservation-only restaurant will be open from Wednesday through Sunday, the Register reported. The Bow Room will be a tearoom during the day and a cocktail bar at night, the newspaper reported.

The afternoon tea service will cost $55 per person and includes fruit, smoked salmon and other finger foods. Cocktails offered at night will include You Had Me at Hello (Cachaca, aperol, lemon, sherry and pineapple), Dear Daniel (Mezcal, pineapple, lime, spirulina and salted coconut whip) and Matcha Matcha (Japanese whiskey, yogurt, matcha and yuzu).

Hello Kitty wines also will be offered, the Register reported.

Chicken fingers dipped in Coke? US Open fan's food habit sparks debate

It seems like a typical American lunch: crispy chicken fingers paired with an ice-cold Coca-Cola. But one woman's way of combining the two has sparked a heated debate on social media.

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According to Fox News, an unsuspecting tennis fan was caught on camera dipping a chicken tender in her soda cup Monday at the U.S. Open. ESPN posted the video clip on Twitter, where it quickly went viral. 

>> Watch the clip here

The woman, later identified as Alexa Greenfield of New York, explained her food habit in an interview Tuesday.

"My dad started me with [dipping chicken fingers in soda] I think to cool it down, but I just loved the taste and kept going," she told Fox News. "Once I got older, I gave it up for a while, assuming it would be way too weird to bring it into adulthood."

But she eventually decided to bring back the curious combo – and social media users aren't quite sure what to make of it. While some commenters were just confused, others were appalled.

Other Twitter users had Greenfield's back.

One thing's for sure: If the internet can't handle the idea of dipping chicken strips in soda, it definitely isn't ready for the Southern tradition of combining Coke and peanuts

PETA wants to build 5-foot memorial for lobsters killed in truck crash

Animal rights activists with the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) are asking the Maine DOT for permission to put up a five-foot memorial along Route 1 in Brunswick where lobsters died in a crash a week ago.

>> PETA billboard in Baltimore urges patrons to stop eating crabs

Last Wednesday, a truck carrying about 70 crates of live lobsters overturned on the road, killing some of the crustaceans

In PETA's letter to the Department of Transportation, activists said the memorial would urge passing drivers to "try vegan."

"Countless sensitive crustaceans experienced an agonizing death when this truck rolled over and their bodies came crashing down onto the highway," said PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. "PETA hopes to pay tribute to these individuals who didn't want to die with a memorial urging people to help prevent future suffering by keeping lobsters and all other animals off their plates."

>> SEE: Eye-popping rainbow-colored lobster escapes death, now on display at aquarium

PETA said in their letter that "lobsters are intelligent individuals who use complex signals to establish social relationships" and that the practice of boiling them alive without first stunning them has been banned in Switzerland.

The organization hopes that the memorial would motivate others to go vegan and "prevent such tragedies."

>> Read more trending news 

The letter said: "At a time when animal transport accidents are becoming more common, this memorial would be an effective way to remind truck drivers and Brunswick residents of their responsibility to fellow motorists and animals."

According to PETA, "the memorial would be placed at the edge of the right-of-way farthest from the road so that it wouldn't be distracting to drivers."

Snoop Dogg releasing ‘From Crook to Cook’ cookbook this fall

Snoop Dogg continues to do the unexpected -- from a cooking show with Martha Stewart to a No. 1 gospel album to a cookbook.

The California rapper announced the release of his first cookbook, “From Crook to Cook: Platinum Recipes from Tha Boss Dogg's Kitchen,” on social media Thursday.

>> Read more trending news 

People reported that the book will have 50 of Snoop’s favorite recipes, and they are all cannabis-free.

Recipes for baked mac and cheese, chicken and waffles, baby back ribs and more will be in the book, which is organized by meal and occasion with entertaining tips from Snoop, 43,  throughout. 

Us Weekly reported that the book will also have takes on soft flour tacos, orange chicken, lobster and filet mignon.

It wouldn’t be a Snoop cookbook without some mention of the rapper’s favorite munchies, like chewy Starbursts and Frito BBQ twists, and a gin and juice recipe.

“You know it’s blazin’ up in my kitchen,” Snoop said in a news release. “I’m takin’ the cookbook game higher with a dipped and whipped collection of my favorite recipes, ya dig?”

“From Crook to Cook” will be released Oct. 23

BrewDog DogHouse: ‘World's first’ craft beer hotel opens in Ohio this weekend

BrewDog will celebrate the opening of its new “beer-hotel” in Ohio this weekend. 

The brewery said the hotel, named the DogHouse, is the “world’s first craft beer hotel,” according to BrewDog’s website

>> PREVIOUS STORY: World’s first beer-themed hotel may be coming to Ohio

Named the DogHouse, the hotel in Canal Winchester, a city near Columbus, is the first of its kind and features 32 rooms, including eight deluxe suites and a workout facility, according to WBNS.

Other features include a lobby bar with games and activities, a marketplace for takeaway food, international continental breakfast daily and select dog-friendly rooms. Guests also will have views of the brewery throughout in order to watch the brewers work.

All rooms include in-room refrigerators stocked with BrewDog beers, in-shower fridges, in-room taps, 42-inch flat screens and plenty more.

>> Read more trending news 

In addition to the craft beer escape, BrewDog also has unveiled its on-site, interactive beer museum. This 6,000-square-foot space provides a journey through the brewing process, a deep dive into the history of craft beer, and a hands-on experience of "the fundamental four" ingredients that contribute to the creation of a craft beer.

Established in 2007, BrewDog has grown from selling craft beer in the United Kingdom to exporting to 60 countries and 49 bars around the world.

The first night patrons can sleep at the DogHouse hotel will be Aug. 26, according to the website.

Read more here.

Grilling fanatic? Get $10K to eat barbecue as Reynolds' new 'chief grilling officer'

Hungry for a new career? Reynolds Kitchens has a mouthwatering new job opportunity.

According to a post on its website, the company best known for its aluminum foil is hiring a chief grilling officer to help "identify the best grilling techniques and tips" to pass along to Reynolds' fans.

>> 6 tips for safe and fun summer grilling

"As CGO, you won't need a comfy corner office. That's because for two weeks, you'll be too busy sampling and savoring grilled goods from some of the top barbeque cities in the country," the job ad reads.

"Along the way, you'll share tips, techniques and pictures of your travels on the Reynolds Kitchens website and social channels, so that grilling enthusiasts at home can make drool-worthy meals on their own."

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The gig includes a $10,000 stipend and "pre-paid travel and lodging for you and a (very lucky) guest," the listing says.

Ready to dig in? You can apply for the position by sending a 100-word essay about "why you think you would be the ultimate CGO" to ReynoldsCGO@gmail.com. You also must include an original photo of your favorite grilling recipe.

Read more here.

CNN to release final season of Anthony Bourdain's 'Parts Unknown' this fall

CNN will be cobbling together a final seven-episode season of “Parts Unknown” with Anthony Bourdain, who died of suicide in June. It’s set to air this fall. 

Only one episode featuring Bourdain and fellow CNN host W. Kamau Bell in Kenya was fully completed before his death with his signature narration.

>> PHOTOS: Anthony Bourdain through the years

Bourdain’s production company will use pre-existing footage to create four other episodes in Manhattan’s Lower East Side, the Big Bend area of Texas along the border of Mexico, the Asturias region of Spain and Indonesia. Without his post-production narration, the producers will use audio that he shot while on location.

>> Anthony Bourdain: Chef influenced food world with 'Kitchen Confidential', 'Parts Unknown'

Another episode will be focused on outtakes and anecdotes from crew and producers. The final “Parts Unknown” will be more of a tribute from fans and friends. 

“Each one will feel slightly different depending on what’s gathered in the field,” said Amy Entelis, executive vice president of talent and content at CNN who handles original series and films, to the Los Angeles Times. “They will have the full presence of Tony because you’ll see him, you’ll hear him, you’ll watch him. That layer of his narration will be missing, but it will be replaced by other voices of people who are in the episodes.”

>> Anthony Bourdain will filed, leaves bulk of $1.2 million estate to daughter

The network relied on Bourdain’s Emmy-winning show for ratings, especially on Sunday nights, where it regularly propelled the network ahead of Fox News and MSNBC among 25- to 54-year-olds. On CNN since 2013, Bourdain’s show was CNN’s original series calling card, the show that was able to charge the most ad dollars, according to Standard Media Index. The Los Angeles Times story said over a nearly nine-month period through June 14, CNN aired his show 166 times. 

>> Read more trending news 

While Bourdain’s show is in effect irreplaceable, CNN still has other original series options, including Bell’s “United Shades of America,” “This is Life With Lisa Ling,” “The 2000s,” and “The History of Comedy.” And more are in the pipeline, including Atlanta-based Sanjay Gupta’s “Chasing Life,” where he travels the world seeking secrets to living longer, healthier and happier. 

Kudzu is edible: Here's how to eat it

In the Southeast, you’ll find kudzu draping the scenery off the side of the interstate. You’ll find kudzu climbing that abandoned barn in your neighbor’s backyard. And if you sit long enough in one place, you may even find kudzu growing up your leg — the picturesque, prolific creeper vine can grow up to 12 inches in a day.

But one place you’re unlikely to find kudzu is on your plate. Why is that?

>> Back to school: 15 preschool lunch ideas even teens will eat

After all, in today’s culinary climate of favoring locally grown produce, shouldn’t we eat an edible leaf that grows seemingly everywhere?

“I’ve never cooked with or used kudzu, because none of the farmers I source from have ever had it on their lists,” said Jarrett Stieber, an Atlanta chef with a reputation for using local, seasonal ingredients. “But I’m open to cooking with it. I’ve used similar things like sweet potato and pumpkin leaf, which are popular in Southeast Asian and some African cuisines, but never kudzu.”

Regardless of a willingness to try, is eating kudzu even possible? Yes, say experts, as long as you know what you’re doing.

“Kudzu seeds and seed pods aren’t edible, but the leaves, roots, flowers and vine tips are,” said Raleigh Saperstein, senior horticulturist at the Atlanta Botanical Garden. She pointed out that, despite its reputation as an omnipresent nuisance, U.S. Forest Service research has shown that kudzu, whose scientific name is Pueraria montana, only occupies one-tenth of 1 percent of the South’s 200 million acres of forest. Asian privet, by comparison, takes up 14 times the amount of space that kudzu does. Making kudzu edible may be a way to demythologize and destigmatize the plant.

>> Is fruit juice healthy for kids? Expert weighs in

Darryl Wilson is a North Carolina forager and entrepreneur whose business, Carolina Kudzu Crazy, focuses on edible applications of the vine. He started by feeding the leaves to pigs and rabbits before moving on to us humans, avoiding the larger leaves, which can be too tough.

“We use the small leaves in recipes that call for spinach bacon quiche,” said Wilson. Kudzu has a mild spinach-like flavor, and Wilson said that it absorbs other flavors well.

Kudzu flowers may hold the most uses for those looking to get something tasty out of the vine. Yes, kudzu has flowers. They’re small and purple and blossom beneath the leaves, which is why they’re not easily noticed. The vine generally flowers in late July through early September, and hanging vines are more likely to have flowers than those growing along the ground.

Carolina Kudzu Crazy has also developed grilling glazes, stir-fry glazes, both sweet and spicy jellies and a pancake syrup, all using kudzu blossoms that impart a flavor that tastes like a grape-apple combination to some, and a strawberry-apple to others, according to Wilson.

Thinking of testing out your own kudzu recipes? Saperstein cautions against just pulling off the highway with a pair of shears. “Like any foraged food, avoid plants that might have been sprayed with herbicides or are growing alongside major roadways where they could be contaminated with vehicle exhaust,” she said.

>> Hot Cheetos, Takis under fire after mom blames spicy snacks for daughter's gallbladder surgery

Kudzu originates in East Asia. It was first imported to the United States from Japan in 1876, brought over for the Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia. It made its way to the Southeast within a decade. But it wasn’t until farmer, radio personality and Atlanta Constitution columnist Channing Cope exhorted its benefits in the mid-1900s that it began to spread across the region.

So although kudzu has become iconically Southern, perhaps to find an edible application for it, it’s best to look to the culinary traditions from where kudzu is rooted.

“I have cooked with powder of kudzu root when I was in Asia,” said Jason Liang, the sushi chef behind Brush Sushi Izakaya in Decatur, Georgia, and the newly opened Japanese fast-casual spot Momonoki in Midtown Atlanta. “The powder is mixed with water then added to thicken the sauce or soup. It doesn’t have color or taste of its own.”

In addition to kudzu starch’s use as a cooking thickener, Liang noted that dehydrated kudzu root is commonly used in Chinese medicine to relieve hangovers, upset stomachs, headaches and flu symptoms.

And while kudzu is unlikely to be the next locavore craze, Atlanta diners may see some dishes incorporating the vine creep onto menus around town.

>> Read more trending news 

“I’m sure it would go well with other veggies and summer fruits, too, like peach, blueberry and fig,” speculated chef Jarrett Stieber of the pop-up concept Eat Me Speak Me.

And Matt Marcus, the new chef-owner of Watershed, is currently testing culinary applications for kudzu.

“We are making powders, oils, papers, jams and more while trying to figure out the sweet spot between flavor and color,” said Marcus, who’s also playing around with okra-esque kudzu “slime” in his kitchen. “I think most people don’t use kudzu in town because of the stigma it has gotten as an invasive vine. It’s also not easy to manipulate, and the yield is very low for usable raw product without refinement.”

But perhaps the vine just doesn’t have enough going for it to make it worth the trouble. After all, said Jason Liang, “It doesn’t have much taste, and no one seems to care about it. Maybe we all have enough things to eat already.”

Wraps, salads sold at Kroger, Trader Joe's recalled over possible parasite

Have you recently picked up a salad or wrap from the grocery store? It could make you sick, according to a new health alert.

The Food Safety and Inspection Service said Monday that "beef, pork and poultry salad and wrap products" recently distributed by Indianapolis-based Caito Foods may be contaminated with a parasite called cyclospora.

>> On USDA.gov: See the full list of recalled products

The products, produced July 15-18, have "sell by" dates of July 18-23 and were sold at Kroger, Trader Joe's, Walgreens and other retailers across the country, WRTV reported. The recalled items also have an establishment number of EST. 39985 or P-39985, the FSIS said.

>> On USDA. gov: See the labels here

Health officials issued the alert after Caito Foods' lettuce supplier, Fresh Express, said "the chopped romaine that is used to manufacture some of their salads and wraps was being recalled," according to the FSIS.

>> RELATED STORY: Listeria concerns prompt recall of grab-and-go sandwiches in 11 states

Symptoms of cyclospora infection include watery diarrhea with frequent bowel movements, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Its incubation period could last up to 14 days, officials said.

>> Read more trending news 

If you have any of the recalled products, you should throw them away or return them to the store, officials said. If you think you are sick, visit your health care provider.

Read more here.

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