The characteristics were studied of risk communication regarding food safety (i.e., two-way, one-way, or not in practice) by local public agencies. The staff in charge of nutrition at public agencies in Japan were surveyed in November 2006 by means of a questionnaire answered anonymously. Answers concerning risk communication practices with residents were classified into three groups: ‘two-way,’ ‘one-way,’ and ‘not in practice.’ A cross-sectional analysis and chi-square test were used to assess each characteristic and differences between the groups for the other questions. Responses on risk communication practices with residents showed 144 (12.4%) responses as ‘two-way,’ 371 (31.9%) as ‘one-way,’ and 613 (52.8%) as ‘not in practice.’ The percentage of the ‘two-way’ group was significantly (p<0.001) high for those respondents being from districts of Tokyo or from a city with its own health care center (37, 38.5%), having the intention (48, 20.0%) and confidence to carry out risk communication (19, 42.2%), and believing it necessary to tell residents that no food is completely safe (42, 25.5%). Most local public agencies did not practice ‘two-way’ risk communication, making it necessary to convert the ‘one-way’ and ‘not in practice’ groups to ‘two-way’ risk communication.
It is well known that milk and dairy products have an effect of controlling the rise of blood sugar level after eating, but the effective ingredients have not previously been analyzed. We compared and analyzed the blood sugar reaction after eating a diet with milk containing different amounts of milk fat. The results show that, by combining rice with milk, the reduction of blood sugar level tended to be more rapid. The insulin response was significantly high with all types of milk. The glycemic index (GI) was significantly decreased in combination with low-fat milk, mixed milk, and high-fat milk, but there was no significant effect in combination with no-fat milk. Although there was a small effect on the fall of GI with no-fat milk, suggesting the participation of an ingredient other than milk fat, it seems that the presence of fat in milk increased the relaxation action of the milk on the blood sugar rise.
The relationship between the bitter food preference and taste sensitivity to PROP (6-n-propylthiouracil) was examined in 108 university students. A taste test indicated that the preference for a straight coffee solution and caffeine fell with higher taste sensitivity to PROP; however, the preference for coffee with added milk and sugar, and for powdered tea (maccha) was not correlated with the taste sensitivity to PROP. The answers to a questionnaire showed that the preference for coffee and beer was not correlated with the taste sensitivity to PROP. These results suggest that the taste sensitivity to PROP may be related to bitter food preferences, but that the correlation may not be strong.
A relationship was identified between the learning, knowledge and skills in providing school lunches for elementary and junior high school students and the improvement of food knowledge, food selection and food environmental setting of agricultural high school students. An agricultural high school, department of nutrition science at a university, and a school lunch center collaboratively developed an educational program. Twenty-five third-graders at a high school produced and presented tomatoes and cheese to the school lunch center which were used in school lunches provided to all elementary and junior high schools in Nayoro city. In addition, the high school students took classes and practical training on food characteristics, the process by which those foods are supplied to students as school lunches, and a balanced diet. The students then prepared school lunch newsletters which were destributed to all the schools. A before-and-after comparison with a self-answered questionnaire was used to evaluate the changes of consumer support and their knowledge, food selection, and food environmental setting in their own dietary habits. Changes in the two evaluation scores and the factors affecting these changes were analyzed. The level of consumer support of nine participants rose. The knowledge and food environmental setting of this elevated group were significantly improved. The effective factors of consumer support were indicators of their dietary habits. A relationship was therefore identified between the consumer support and improved food knowledge and food environmental setting of the agricultural high school students.