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Topic: Alleviate dry eyes with massage and good nutrition

If you are an office worker who sits in front of a computer screen all day, and after work swipes away on your mobile phone, plays on a Nintendo Switch or other electronic devices, you are at risk of “diseases of affluence,” including tired and sore eyes. To avoid dry eye syndrome, in addition to resting your eyes, you can use eye massage techniques and eat nutritious foods to alleviate the symptoms.


Smartphone addicts and office workers glued to screens all day often go for long periods without blinking; this can lead to tiredness, dry eye syndrome and sore eyes. According to ophthalmologist Wang Meng-chi, getting a good night’s sleep and using a steam eye mask can help. However, Wang also recommends massaging acupressure points around the eye area, including the eyebrows, between and at the tips of the eyebrows, the temples, below the eye sockets and the corners of the eyes near the bridge of the nose. Wang advises massaging each of these areas in turn to relieve discomfort.


In addition to massaging the eye area, nutritionist Kao Min-min also recommends eating certain foods, such as seasonal watermelon, which contains 90 percent water, and vegetables such as gherkin, cucumber and winter melon to relieve dry eye syndrome. Kao also recommends eating deep-sea fish such as salmon, tuna, Pacific saury and mackerel, which are rich in fish oils and can reduce inflammation, one to three times a week. Vegetable oil-containing foods such as nuts are also beneficial to eye health, Kao adds.


Kao says a lack of vitamin A can increase the severity of dry eye syndrome so, in addition to taking in more oil-rich foods, she recommends supplementing the diet with starchy foods such as sweet potato or pumpkin, vegetables such as red and yellow peppers, fruits such as papaya, watermelon or cantaloupe melon and berry fruits such as blueberries. All of these foods contain anthocyanin, says Kao, which has antioxidant properties and is excellent at reducing inflammation.


Source article: https://www.taipeitimes.com/News/lang/archives/2020/07/15/2003739918

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Topic: Thai mangosteens a gigantic hit in Taiwan

泰國農業部主任Surmsuk Salakpetch表示,台灣自2003年禁止山竹進口,15年後終於在今年九月開放進口,泰國山竹一進口就在台灣造成轟動,對於泰國水國出口商無疑是一大福音。

It’s the sweet smell of success for Thai fruit exporters: Thai mangosteens have become an instant hit among Taiwanese consumers after the fruit went on sale there for the first time in 15 years, Department of Agriculture director-general Surmsuk Salakpetch said.


“The Taiwanese press reported that consumers queued up to buy mangosteen from Thailand,” she said. “The first lot of 980 kilogrammes was sold out in only 30 minutes.


”Each box of four mangosteens was sold at Bt200 (NT$203),” Surmsuk added.


“The unexpected positive response has proved a good opportunity for Thai exporters,” she said. “Since September 5, Thai entrepreneurs have exported 100,533kg of mangosteens to Taiwan, worth more than Bt20 million.”


According to the director-general, Taiwan’s import standards require Thai mangosteens to undergo a steam treatment for decontamination and eradication of fruit flies – the latter being the reason why Taiwan had been rejecting fruits from Thailand for the past 15 years.


“We have developed a technique to treat mangosteens at 46 degrees Celsius for 58 minutes, which is the optimal temperature and time so the taste of the fruits is not ruined, while meeting the requirements of the Taiwan Plant and Animal Disease Prevention and Quarantine Office,” said Surmsuk.


“I am glad that although Taiwanese people haven’t been able to enjoy Thai mangosteens for 15 years, they still remember the exquisite taste of this ‘queen of fruit’,” she said. “This makes me confident that there’s a bright future ahead for Thai fruit exporters, who are aiming to capture the Taiwanese market.”

Source article: https://chinapost.nownews.com/20190924-761271

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A Race Against the Sun

It was a long, hot summer, like most in the San Joaquin Valley. The pistachio trees planted in orderly rows — and the growers who nurture them — are accustomed to harsh conditions. With their deep roots and tough, gnarly branches, pistachio trees are hardy, tolerant of salty soils and brutal heat waves. Some can live for centuries.


But while sweltering summers are the norm in this part of central California, there’s a new, existential threat to these trees, one that scientists warn could spell the end of the pistachio harvest: warmer winters. Many crops are facing similar threats as agricultural regions across the world experience previously unseen extremes in heat, rain and drought.


Chilly winters are critical to nut and fruit trees, particularly pistachios. To break their slumber and spread their pollen, pistachios need to spend about 850 hours, or five weeks, at temperatures below 45 degrees.


So as the San Joaquin Valley warms and its cooling fogs retreat, growers have found their orchards out of sync: Many male trees are no longer producing pollen when the females need it.


After suffering a billion-dollar loss from a recent warm winter, California pistachio growers don’t need much convincing that their livelihoods are endangered by climate change. Heeding warnings that the industry may not survive past the middle of the century, they are among the world’s earliest adapters. Scientists are wrangling and crossing genes to breed trees that can survive a warmer world, and growers are hedging their bets by planting experimental trees that need fewer chilly days.


“There’s a lot to be said about traditional knowledge. But this is new territory,” said Rebecca Carter of the World Resources Institute, a nonprofit research group that is working with growers around the world to adapt to the threats of climate change, including warmer winters, dried-up aquifers and record-breaking heat waves.


Scientists in 2013 urged “immediate adaptation” by farmers to ensure that they can feed the 10 billion people expected to inhabit the planet by 2050. They warned in a study that world hunger would worsen as crop yields declined, pests and diseases increased, water demand skyrocketed and highly vulnerable crops vanished. “The whole food system needs to change,” according to the report published in the journal Science.


Coping, Carter said, would “require fundamental changes in how food is produced, how land is used, who lives where and what economic activities occur in specific areas.”


Those changes are already happening worldwide. After growing coffee for generations, farmers in parts of Costa Rica are switching to oranges. Kenyan herders, facing intense droughts, are raising camels instead of cattle. In China’s drought-prone Fujian province, farmers who grew wheat and corn have switched to apples.


Source article: https://paper.udn.com/udnpaper/POH0067/345636/web/#2L-15722568L