Friday, May 30, 2008

Bigger, Stronger, Faster

Sylvester Stallone, Hulk Hogan, Arnold Schwarzenegger. The 1980s saw an explosion of butt-kicking in America, observes Christopher Bell in the raucously funny and surprisingly insightful prologue to his debut documentary, "Bigger, Stronger, Faster*." And as a 12-year-old kid from a loving but undeniably short and doughy family in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., Bell and his brothers were particularly susceptible to the message. As he reminds us, the don't-mess-with-the-U.S. Reagan years were an overheated response to '70s downers such as the Iran hostage crisis. But for the Bell boys, it was simply a call to ripped, bulging arms.

What began simply as a documentary about steroid use in America, "Bigger, Stronger, Faster*" (The asterisk refers to the movie's subtitle: "The Side-Effects of Being American") turns out to be a surprisingly comprehensive and insightful look at a culture predicated on might and obsessed with achieving success at any cost.

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A Dangerous Combination...Energy Drinks and Alcohol

If you enjoy energy drinks there is a dangerous combination medical professionals say you should avoid...adding alcohol to your drink.

Creighton Baird says jager bombs and vodka red bulls are popular drinks at parties he attends. People drink the combination to feel a "high" he says can not be created without both the alcohol and energy drink.

"And so you are hyped up but you are drunk at the same time which makes you feel like you were, I mean you feel like you're superman when you're drunk away, but you feel like when you mix alcohol with an energy drink you feel like you can take on the world," Creighton says.

That feeling of invincibility is what a local doctor says is the energy drink masking the intoxicating effects of the alcohol creating the illusion of being alert.

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Sunday, May 11, 2008

Bodyworks: Photos from the Weird World of Bodybuilding

Popeye biceps, rippling six-packs, and supernaturally dark tans: these pumped-up people have trained for a Scandinavian bodybuilding contest by shaking off every last ounce of fat. But even if you admire their commitment, it is hard not to recoil in confusion at such asexual specimens.

It was this reaction – something between respect and disgust – which prompted the Danish photographer Joachim Ladefoged to photograph this slew of hard-bodies. He took a mixture of black and white and colour photography at the Danish Bodybuilding Championship in 2001 and similar events in the ensuing years, underexposing the subjects to make them appear darker still. The resulting snaps are assembled in a book, Mirror (the title a nod to his models' narcissism), to be published later this year.

To read more of this content at The Independent, click here

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Eastern Europe Fastest Growing Market for Neutraceuticals

Sales of nutraceutical products in Eastern Europe have shot up in the past decade, as the market catches up with the rest of the world, according to an industry veteran.

Peter Zambetti, global business development manager for dietary supplements at Capsugel, said that this is the fastest growing of all global markets, with every area in the region showing "pretty impressive growth".

Overall, sales in the region reached around $1.4bn in 2006, compared to just over $300m in 1997, said Zambetti, who is also in the International Alliance of Dietary/Food Supplement Association's (IADSA) global market affairs department.

To read more of this content at NutraIngredients.Com, click here.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Iron Supplements Might Harm Infants Who Have Enough, Study Suggests

A new study suggests that extra iron for infants who don't need it might delay development -- results that fuel the debate over optimal iron supplement levels and could have huge implications for the baby formula and food industry.

"Our results for 25 years of research show problems with lack of iron. For us to find this result is a big deal, it's really unexpected," said Dr. Betsy Lozoff, University of Michigan research professor at the Center for Human Growth and Development, and the study's principal investigator.

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