School Girl’s Science Project Changed Real Science


Our Monday green news brings you the latest on nutrition, good causes and child education:

school science projects, lionfish research

Photo courtesy of Jonathan Donovan via Flickr

  • School girl’s science project changed the way scientists see lionfish:  As part of a sixth grade science project, twelve-year old Lauren from Florida wanted to examine whether a dead lionfish’s spikes would still be venomous. Lionfish had been seen in Florida since 2010 and have since spread to many of its waters, becoming very common in the area. The daughter of two scientists started investigating how the lionfish survives in river conditions being an ocean fish. Lauren had discovered that lionfish can survive in freshwater, which is a significant discovery since scientists had not studied the dangerous predator in freshwater areas until now. This completely human-caused threat to the ecosystem and commercial fishing is now much greater than previously believed. The results of her experiment ended up being published in the science journal Environmental Biology of Fishes and changed the way scientists are dealing with the pervasive lionfish invasion in non-native waters.
  • Foods types to be better avoided for a good health: According to Dr. Oz and Dr. Roizen of the Cleveland Clinic, the following six food types should not be part of a healthy diet: Number one are Trans fats being the worst food type of them all that should be completely avoided. Second are saturated fats, which unlike artificially created trans fats, occur in food naturally. However saturated fats deteriorate arteries by causing inflammation , which changes the buildup of fatty tissue on their inner linings. A safe amount is only 4 grams in an hour, which equals to about 4-ounce portion of lean pork tenderloin, as an example. Added sugar is number 3 on the list: extra sugar decreases functionality of the proteins in our body resulting directly in aging of the immune and arterial systems and also joints. Use no more than 4 grams of added sugar per hour. Syrups are number 4: the best known high-fructose corn syrup, which contributes to obesity and metabolic syndrome is a serious nutritional no-no. However any artificially-produced syrup counts for added sugar and should be avoided. Number 5 are all bleached flour products: when consuming these products such as breads and pastas made with enriched, bleached, unbleached, semolina or durum flour, our body quickly converts this carbohydrate to sugar in our bloodstream causing the same health issues as added sugars. Lastly, cold cuts and cured meats: if you enjoy meats in your diet, skip the salami, bologna, pastrami, roast beef and hot dogs and opt for lean ham and lean pork (tenderloin), which contains lower amounts of salt and less saturated fat.
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