Science & Food

Astronomy, Particle Physics, Chemistry, Food, Fitness. Everything else that I care about.

Health Benefits of different alcohols.

This seemed like a good topic of research, will help wildly in arguments.

– Wine: Reduces risks of cancer (antioxidants), stroke (natural blood thinner), heart disease (tannins), lowers bad cholesterol (resveratrol).

– Rum: Prevents cold (anti-microbial) and gives warmth, reduced muscle pain, increases bone density

– Vodka: Reduces stress, anesthetic and reduces tooth pain, helps better skin and hair (if applied topically, not internally, but who’s checking!), excellent cleanser.

– Gin: Fights off illness, juniper berries help in expelling mucus, and cough and lung congestion, helps arthritis pains, aid digestion (the herbs increase enzyme excretion), juniper berries are also a diuretic so can flush out systems helping kidneys, may help you lose weight in moderation.

– Whiskey: Reduce chance of Alzheimer and Dementia, good for heart (high antioxidants), anti-stroke, anti-cancerous.

– Tequila: Who thought this guy could make an appearance but guess what, he’s kinda winning at this health shtick. Gluten free, Lowers blood sugar (agavins affect triglycerides, cholesterol and insulin positively), Numbs pain (not because you’re passed out but because it’s a vasodialater), helps in digestion (has probiotics like – move aside Danone!)

PS: Pretty much all alcohol (when not drinking a whole bottle) is heart healthy and a pain reliever due to being a blood thinner.

Different Kinds of Clouds (and what they mean)

Staying in Canada means, there is no rainy season – doesn’t mean it’s always bright and sunny rather, that’s it’s always cloudy and gloomy and you never know when it will start raining, snowing or some combination of them. So here’s a rundown of what the different cloud formations are:

– Cumulus – 1Km: Most common white clouds with some darer bottoms, whispy, photo-like puffs of white/light grey cotton/cauliflower heads with flat bottoms, disappears towards evenings, formed due to hot sun. If too grey, can bring rain else, usually safe.

– Stratus – 2Km:  Light grey that covers the full sky and is featureless, like a fog high up, Bring light drizzle.

– Stratocumulus – 2.4Km: Light Grey lumpy clouds that cover most of the sky but leave bits of blue sky/sun peaking, like of like a spread-out cumulus cloud. Usually formed in lines or waves, caused by weak convection in atmosphere.

– Altocumulus – 6-20Km: Higher than the above clouds and mini puffs of many white/light grey clouds, usually a lot of that means storm later.

– Nimbostratus – around 2K but may be higher or lower: Dark Grey that stretch all over the sky and block out all of the sun and usually always brings steady rain or snow over a widespread area.

– Altostratus – 6-25Km: Blueish-light grey clouds that cover the sky but still lets the sun shine through – albeit dimly. Brings precipitation later on.

– Cirrocumulus – >18Km: White clouds that are arranges in rows, kind of looks like tiny puffs arranged in rows or like a wavy hair stretched out (or scaled on a fish), very patterned. Very common in cold weather and don’t bring rain or snow.

– Cirrostatus – 6-12Km: High, thin sheet like clouds that cover majority of the sky but are not overwhelming. The sun or moon shines through and you can see a halo as ice hits the ice crystals and bends. Indicates moisture high above and warm weather coming. Maybe rain later.

– Cirrus – > 18Km: In Latin means curls of hair, wispy white thin tufts, (like furballs), although they form in far weather, they may be indicative of storms later if it’s cold and humid. Also called “mares tail”.

– Cumulonimbus:  These clouds spans low, mid and high parts of the sky and each of them can be 10Km high. They are nimbus clouds that have grown big and are huge clouds with dark patches and usually always brings a storms, rain, hail, snow, even tornadoes. The tops usually flatten out while the middles bulge like cauliflowers.

Huh, this wasn’t super interesting to research but lets see, maybe this knowledge will make me as accurate as most weathermen!


Salting of Food.

What are the effects of salt (NaCl, not just any salt) on food, outside of adding flavour. And why?

– Pickling: Salt draws the water out of stuff so that bacteria can’t grow in it – bacteria need water to thrive, obv. It also draws the water out of bacterial cells so they dehydrate. Brutal!

– In Legumes: When soaking beans, lentils etc, the salt replaces the magnesium in the skin of the legume (because it’s higher in the periodic table!) and most sodium salts are soluble, so the skin becomes more soluble giving a softer legume and more flavour.

– In Meats: This is most interesting. Meat is always most interesting. When marinating, first salt draws out excess water since it’s hydrophilic. Yeh, salt loves water! Next, the salt reacts with some of the hydrophilic proteins/amino acids and forms a protein solution/gel on the surface that forms the nice brown crust on seared meats. Some of the salt that enters the meat causes it to hang on to extra water making it juicy. (These 2 reasons combined is why Gordon Ramsay keeps chanting: salt your meat). The salt also denatures the proteins causing it to lose shape/texture (sometimes making it softer and easier to digest, at other times making it coagulate such as with eggs). Denaturing of protein is when the protein molecules change their helical structures to become “unwound” due to loss of Hydrogen bonds. Poor proteins.

– There are many other effects of salt but they pretty much boil down to the fact that salt is hydrophilic. I love that word. Also, that salt raises boiling temperature of water. But everyone already knows that.