Amazing but true food facts

Published 10:00 pm Thursday, May 19, 2016

One subject that often comes up with clients is food. Today, I’d like share more amazing, but true food facts you might not know.

Here we go…There are more than 7,000 types of apples in the world. An apple is more proficient at waking you in the morning than coffee. Apples belong to the rose family, as do pears and plums.

Eating chocolate before studying or taking tests increases your chance of understanding information. Dark chocolate contains a chemical that our bodies convert to phenyl ethylamine, the same chemical secreted when we fall in love.

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The “ice cream” you see in ice cream ads is usually mashed potatoes, since ice cream would melt during production.

Pound cake got its name from its original recipe which called for a pound each of butter, eggs, sugar, and flour.

Oklahoma’s state vegetable is the watermelon. Watermelon is both a fruit and a vegetable. It’s a fruit because it grows from seed and has a sweet, refreshing taste. It’s a vegetable, because it is harvested and cleared from fields like other vegetables, and is a member of the same family as cucumber, pumpkins, and squash.

The pumpkin originated in Mexico about 9,000 years ago.

Lachanophobia is the fear of vegetables. Fructophobia is the fear of fruits. Arachibutyrobia is the fear of peanut butter sticking to the roof of your mouth.

The twists in pretzels are meant to look like arms crossed in prayer.

Sweet potatoes and yams are not the same thing.

The popsicle was invented by an 11-year-old girl in 1905.

The most popular carrots used to be purple. Carrots have zero fat content. The most expensive pizza in the world costs $12,000 and takes 72 hours to make. An average ear of corn has an even number of rows, usually 16.

Fast food restaurants use yellow, red, and orange because those are the colors that stimulate hunger. The 57 on the Heinz ketchup bottle represents the number of pickle types the company once had.

Lettuce is the second most popular fresh vegetable in the U.S.; tomatoes are number one. There are over 10,000 varieties of tomatoes. The word vegetable has no scientific definition, so its okay to call a tomato a vegetable. Lettuce is a member of the sunflower family.

Onion is Latin for “large pearl.” Onions are great for osteoporosis, because they destroy osteoclasts, bone cells which resorb bone tissue and weaken bones.

Grapefruit, watermelon, berries, celery, Greek yogurt, eggs, fish, coffee, and oatmeal are fat burning foods. Over 100 billion bananas are consumed world-wide each year, making bananas the fourth largest agricultural product in the world following only wheat, rice and corn. Bananas don’t actually grow on trees, but rather from a root structure that produces an above grown stem. A banana plant is an herb and a banana is actually classified as a berry.

For you Clemson fans…the color orange was named after this fruit. The word was adopted from the Spanish word “naaranji” which is derived from the Sanskrit word “narangaa” which means “orange tree.”

Diet or exercise question? Email me at David Crocker of Landrum has been a nutritionist and master personal trainer for 29 years. He served as strength director of the Spartanburg Y.M.C.A., head strength coach for the USC Upstate baseball team, the S.C. state champion girls gymnastic team, and the Converse college equestrian team. He served as a water safety instructor to the United States Marine Corps, lead trainer to L.H. Fields modeling agency, and taught for four semesters at USC Union. David was also a regular guest of the Pam Stone radio show.