For decades, fizzy drinks have dominated the bottled refreshment market. Visit any store refrigerator or cafe, and you’ll see shelves upon shelves of cola, lemonade, and sodas. However, the times, they are a changing! 2016 saw an explosion in the bottled water market, with varieties such as vitamin infused, coconut, flavoured, and medical water, and the consumers are paying attention. Between July 2016 and July 2017, bottled water sales in the UK outstripped cola sales, with 1.77 billion litres of bottled water being purchased, in comparison to 1.72 billion litres of cola, this is the first time in refreshment history that this has happened, and is the fourth consecutive year of double digit growth for the bottled water industry in the UK.
Employees must provide workers with an adequate source of drinking water, this should be free from contamination, and ready accessible, due to the Workplace (Health, Safety, and Welfare) Regulations, 1992. So, we know that we must hydrate our workers – but what benefit does this provide us? Continue reading “Why keep your workplace hydrated?”
As any good cat owner knows, cats are obligate carnivores, meaning that their diet must consist of meat. Similarly to their big cat cousins, domestic cats have a biological need to consume the tissue of other animals to sustain their life.
It’s pretty much a given that competitive eating is a gross, over-indulgence of food, one that’s better heard about than witnessed first-hand. Who wants to see a human bloat themselves beyond measure? Dripping with food-muddied water and abandoning every last shred of dignity in the name of Major League Eating, champions of the competitive eating scene have found a way to go against the pre-programmed fail-safes of their bodies. If you’re in the mood for distended stomachs, suppressing the natural gag reflex, and disregarding the body’s vital messages, then buckle in because we’re going down the gullet hole for this one.
Gurgitators, competitive eaters, fight against their bodies to perform incredible eating feats. Using water training (drinking a gallon of water in 30 seconds), or simply by consuming large meals regularly, competitors stretch their stomachs in an effort to condition their bodies to accept large intake quantities.
For the average person, nausea is triggered after consuming more than 1 litre of food. According to ESPN, gurgitators can surpass this standard by 3 litres or more! Aside from that, the calories consumed in one competition can range from 4,000 calories (18-25 hot dogs) to 12,500 calories (50 hot dogs), thoroughly trumping the recommended intake for the day, 2,300 calories on average for adults.
After the competition, some gurgitators will purge themselves in what has been labelled a “Roman incident” by the International Federation of Competitive Eating, or the IFOCE. Mitigating these events is the IFOCE, who have been drawing up rules, regulations, qualifying contests, and safety measures for this bizarre sport since its formation in 1997.
The accepted technique for gorging oneself is to dip food in water, thereby lubricating the food to make chewing and swallowing it easier. Virtually any liquid can be used to soften the food, but calorie-free water is the best choice considering the abhorrent amount of calories otherwise consumed. Past that, consumption methods are dependent on preference; breaking food into smaller pieces in order to fit more in the mouth for example, or eating different parts of the food separately.
Eating competitions, while entertaining, are unhealthy and potentially dangerous for competitors. Repeated purging will damage tooth enamel and the oesophagus while stretching of the stomach may eventually require surgery to retain normal functioning. Overall, I’d say to steer clear of this strange sport.
If you’ve ever bought a bottle of drinking water (and statistically, you definitely have), you might have noticed that much like almost any other consumable product out there, they have an expiration date printed on them. You might have just ignored this, or brushed it off, but at some point or another, if you did pay it any mind, a simple question probably came next – why?
It’s considered commonplace advice when planning a foreign holiday to avoid the local tap water lest you become the victim of illness. This also extends as far as not using the water to brush your teeth and avoiding ice cubes in your drink. But we all manage to drink water at home with no such issues, so why is it different abroad?
This is a question that has long been debated online. While we all agree that water is tremendously good for us, is there any advantage to drinking warm or room temperature water rather than cold, and vice-versa? As it turns out, there are arguments for and against both, and most of them are perfectly valid. So, what are the pros and cons?
- Cold water tastes better – Not only does cold water seem to be much more refreshing, particularly on a hot day, it is widely agreed upon that it does actually taste better. This could be down to the temperature stimulating the mouth and suppressing other sensations, therefore effectively drowning out some of the more undesirable tastes, but that shouldn’t be taken as fact.
- Cold water can raise your metabolism – This may have the knock on effect of giving you more energy, rather than relaxing you as warmer water tends to. Not only will you be more active, this could be helpful for those aiming to lose weight.
- Cold water can help you lose weight – When we drink cold water our body immediately attempts to normalise the temperature, working hard to warm up the water. This makes your body burn more calories, and some swear by the notion that this boost weight loss. It’s unlikely to have a massive effect as far as I can tell, but it may help to some extent.
- Warms water aids digestion – One often-stated downside to cold water is that cold constricts things, pretty much universally. The same will apply to your own body and the substances found within it. Cold water is said to harden consumed fat, therefore making it harder to digest. Warm water actually has the opposite effect, promoting a healthy digestive system by loosening any fatty deposits.
- Warm water can relive pain and discomfort from cramping –It’s a common solution to apply a hot water bottle to common aches and pains. Drinking warm water can have a very similar effect, loosening muscles and reliving discomfort as it passes through your body.
- Warm water helps you detox – If you are attempting to flush toxins from your body, any kind of water will of course help. By choosing warm water, however, you boost the effectiveness by promoting sweating, removing even more toxins from your system in the process. Drink it with a slice of lemon to get a healthy dose of vitamins, promoting organ health.
- Cold water can actually raise your temperature – We touched on this point briefly earlier, but when you drink cold water your body desperately strives to regulate temperature. This can raise your body temperature as your body works hard to adjust.
- Cold water can worsen pains such as tooth sensitivity and headaches – Cold drinks can be torture for those with sensitive teeth, and can cause significant discomfort if you suffer from frequent headaches or migraines. For obvious reasons, you will want to avoid this.
Infused waters take on the taste of fruits, vegetables or herbs of your choice. A combination of different elements can create distinct flavour profiles when overlaid with the nearly non-existent taste of water. Ingredients used to flavour will leech nutrients and antioxidants into water without adding calories or fructose to the finished product. A great way to supercharge your antioxidant intake for the day is to add chamomile or green tea to an infusion.
Once an infusion is done, fruits generally shouldn’t be reused since they lose most of their flavour in the process. If you want more out of your fruit, refill the pitcher once it’s half empty to mix richly-flavoured water with new water. The rinds of fruits should be excluded from infusions since they can leave a bitter taste. In the case of non-organic produce, the skins can contain pesticide residue and should definitely be omitted from recipes.
Naturally-flavoured water, in this case, does not refer to the zero-calorie concoctions replete with added vitamins, minerals, sugar, and artificial flavours (along with associated downsides). These drinks can contain unwanted additives like caffeine, colouring, and preservatives.