Friday, January 16, 2009

Big chill clamps down on upper Midwest

Friday it was -10 in Cleveland, -6 in Detroit and -11 in Chicago
Associated Press

A bone-numbing Arctic blast drove temperatures down Friday to 11 below in parts of the Midwest and Northeast, closing schools to spare children from freezing at bus stops and prompting police to keep a watchful eye out for the homeless.

Forecasters said temperatures in the upper Midwest could turn into the coldest in years as frigid air keeps spilling south from Canada. The cold snap has claimed at least six lives and contributed to dozens of traffic accidents as vehicles slipped and slid on icy roads.

Scores of schools in Michigan, Iowa, Ohio, Illinois and upstate New York canceled classes for Friday as officials feared it would be dangerous for students to walk to school or wait for buses.
"They're waiting 30 minutes at a bus stop; there's the fear of frostbite and hypothermia," said Champaign Assistant Superintendent Beth Shepperd. "We also have more children walking to school without adequate outerwear."

At 5:30 a.m. Friday it was minus 10 in Cleveland, minus 6 in Detroit and minus 11 in Chicago.

In Philadelphia, an alert issued Tuesday remained in effect Friday, calling on residents to report sightings of homeless people. City crews worked to repair a number of water main breaks after pipes ruptured due to the cold.

Elsewhere in Pennsylvania, wind chills as low as 25 below were reported in the greater Pittsburgh area. Forecasters expected 25-below wind chills in parts of northern Pennsylvania through Saturday morning.

See: Big chill clamps down on upper Midwest

Thursday, January 15, 2009

U.S. group sues Coke over VitaminWater health claims

The 33 grams of sugar in each bottle do more to promote obesity than good health
Reuters News Service

A U.S. consumer group said Thursday it filed a class action lawsuit against Coca-Cola Co, accusing the company of making deceptive health claims about its VitaminWater beverages.

The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) said Coke made a range of claims that go beyond those allowed by the Food and Drug Administration.
"Coke markets VitaminWater as a healthful alternative to soda by labeling its several flavors with such health buzz words as 'defense,' 'rescue,' 'energy,' and 'endurance,'" the group said in a statement.

The company also claims the drinks reduce the risk of chronic disease and eye disease, promote healthy joints and support immune function, CSPI said.

"In fact, according to CSPI nutritionists, the 33 grams of sugar in each bottle of VitaminWater do more to promote obesity, diabetes and other health problems than the vitamins in the drinks do to perform the advertised benefits listed on the bottles," the consumer group said.

Coke officials were not immediately available for comment.

Monday, January 12, 2009

First US Count Finds 1 in 200 Kids Vegetarian

By Medical Writer Mike Stobbe,
Ap Medical Writer

Sam Silverman is co-captain of his high school football team — a safety accustomed to bruising collisions. But that's nothing compared with the abuse he gets for being a vegetarian. "I get a lot of flak for it in the locker room," said the 16-year-old junior at Westborough High School in Massachusetts. "All the time, my friends try to get me to eat meat and tell me how good it tastes and how much bigger I would be," said Silverman, who is 5-foot-10 and 170 pounds. "But for me, there's no real temptation."

Silverman may feel like a vegetable vendor at a butchers' convention, but about 367,000 other kids are in the same boat, according to a recent study that provides the government's first estimate of how many children avoid meat. That's about 1 in 200. Other surveys suggest the rate could be four to six times that among older teens who have more control over what they eat than young children do.

Vegetarian diets exclude meat, but the name is sometimes loosely worn. Some self-described vegetarians eat fish or poultry on occasion, while others — called vegans — cut out animal products of any kind, including eggs and dairy products. Anecdotally, adolescent vegetarianism seems to be rising, thanks in part to YouTube animal slaughter videos that shock the developing sensibilities of many U.S. children. But there isn't enough long-term data to prove that, according to government researchers. The new estimate of young vegetarians comes from a recent federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study of alternative medicine based on a survey of thousands of Americans in 2007. Information on children's diet habits was gleaned from about 9,000 parents and other adults speaking on the behalf of those under 18.

Vegetarians say it's animal welfare, not health, that most often causes kids to stop eating meat. "Compassion for animals is the major, major reason," said Richard Schwartz, president of Jewish Vegetarians of North America, an organization with a newsletter mailing list of about 800. "When kids find out the things they are eating are living animals — and if they have a pet...." Case in point is Nicole Nightingale, 14, of Safety Harbor, Fla. In 2007, Nightingale was on the Internet to read about chicken when she came across a video on YouTube that showed the birds being slaughtered. At the end, viewers were invited to go to the Web site — People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals.

Nicole told her parents she was going vegan, prompting her mother to send an angry letter to PETA. But the vegan diet is working out, and now her mother is taking steps to become a vegetarian, too, said Nightingale, an eighth-grader. She believes her experience was typical for a pre-adolescent vegetarian. "A lot more kids are using the Internet. They're curious about stuff and trying to become independent and they're trying to find out who they are," she said.

Eating vegetarian can be very healthy — nutritionists often push kids to eat more fruits and vegetables, of course. For growing children, however, it's important to get sufficient amounts of protein, vitamins B12 and D, iron, calcium and other important nutrients that most people get from meat, eggs and dairy.

Also, vegetarian diets are not necessarily slimming. Some vegetarian kids cut out meat but fill up on doughnuts, french fries, soda or potato chips, experts said. "Vegetarian doesn't mean low-calorie," said Dr. Christopher Bolling, who directs weight management research at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center. He said roughly 10 to 15 percent of the overweight kids who come to his medical center's weight loss program have tried a vegetarian diet at some point before starting the program.

Rayna Middlebrooks, 15, last year started a weight-loss program offered by Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, a nonprofit hospital organization. Although Rayna does a great job of cooking vegetable-rich stir-fried meals for herself, she also loves pasta, soda and sweets. "I have to watch her with the candy," said mother Barbara Middlebrooks, of Decatur.

On the flip side is Silverman, the Boston-area football player. He's pleased with his health and has no problem sticking to his diet. Rather than try to negotiate the school cafeteria line, he brings his lunch to school. It's the same lunch every day — rye bread, some chicken-like tofu, cheese, a clementine and an assortment of Nutrigrain, Cliff, granola and Power Bars. He was raised vegetarian and said it's now so deeply ingrained that the idea of eating meat is nauseating. Recently, he ate something he belatedly realized might contain chicken. "I felt sick the rest of the day, until I threw up," he said.

To view full article, please click here.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Registeration Available Online Now

KOY Renewable Energy & Sustainable Living Summit
KNN-Dept. of Environmental Sciences

Register online now for the KOY Renewable Energy & Sustainable Living Summit to be held in Atlanta, Georgia at the Return to Royalty Banquet Hall (Soul Vegetarian Restaurant Complex-West End).

Please note the correct Summit dates are JANUARY 23-25, 2009

The $75.00 conference fee includes conference packets, divine inner-attainment, vegan meals (free of meat, dairy, animal products & by-products) and workshops. Please see agenda below:

Conference Agenda

Friday, Jan. 23rd 2009
Check-In & Registration, Meet & Greet

Saturday, Jan. 24th 2009:

Morning Session, Conference Overview & Purpose

Topic I: The Future of Water
Topic II: Renewable Energy


Topic III: The Restoration Village
Topic IV: Global Sustainability


Afternoon Breakout Sessions
-Economics-Sar Aytahniel
-Agriculture-Ahk Yaneev
-Architecture-Ahtur Ariel


Resolution Statements (10 mins each)


Keynote Topic: "Sustaining the Yah Idea"



Sunday, Jan. 25th 2009
Closeout Breakfast
Special DVD Presentation - Sar Yadiel (Israel)

Closing Statements

Breath of Life Class

To register online, please click here, or go to, scroll down and click on the globe.

For more information on the Summit, please contact Ahtur Keymah at

We'll see you there!