Egg products found to contain nicarbazin: FDA

Source: Taipei Time (

By Lee I-chia  /  Staff reporter


A Food and Drug Administration (FDA) inspection of meat and poultry products found residues of the chemical nicarbazin in two types of chicken egg products and one type of duck egg product.

The agency conducted the random inspection of 118 meat or poultry products at wholesale markets, egg farms, hyperrmarkets and supermarkets between March and May, testing for 126 types of drugs used on animals.

The products tested included 15 pork products, 20 meatball products, 42 chicken egg products, 16 duck egg products, 20 cow milk products and five goat milk products.

FDA Central Center for Regional Administration official Chen Tzu-ling (陳姿伶) said the affected chicken egg products were from Yu Chuan Farm (宇泉牧場) and Chang Hsiung Farm (章雄畜牧場), both in Pingtung County; and the duck eggs were from Hsing Lung Farm (興隆畜牧場) in Taichung.

Nicarbazin is a legal feed additive that contains a veterinary drug of a low toxicity, but it can cause harm to the kidneys if the concentration is high, the FDA said.

Council of Agriculture regulations stipulate that nicarbazin with a concentration between 100 parts per million (ppm) and 200ppm can be added to chicken feed, but chickens cannot be fed with nicarbazin within five days before products are brought to market and that feed containing nicarbazin cannot be given to egg-producing hens, the FDA said.

Chen said 2,732 eggs containing nicarbazin residue have been recalled and destroyed, and the farms could be fined between NT$60,000 and NT$200 million (US$1,874 and US$624,531), according to the Act Governing Food Safety and Sanitation (食品安全衛生管理法).

The urgency in fighting childhood obesity

Source: Taipei Times


Problems of obesity are not limited to physical illnesses, as obese adolescents were found to have higher rates of depression, with even the label of being overweight turning into a self-fulfilling prophesy, causing obesity further down the road

By Jane Brody  /  NY Times News Service

Life-threatening ailments like heart disease, cancer, stroke and Type 2 diabetes most often afflict adults. However, they are often consequences of childhood obesity.

Two new studies, conducted among more than half a million children in Denmark who were followed for many years, linked a high body mass index (BMI) in children to an increased risk of developing colon cancer and suffering an early stroke as adults.

The studies, presented this spring at the European Obesity Summit in Gothenburg, Sweden, underscore the importance of preventing and reversing undue weight gain in young children and teenagers.

One study, of more than 257,623 people, by Britt Wang Jensen and colleagues at the Institute of Preventive Medicine, in Bispebjerg, Denmark, and Frederiksberg Hospital in Copenhagen, grouped children according to standard deviations from a mean BMI, adjusted for a child’s age and sex.

They found that each unit of increase in being overweight at age 13, generally corresponding to a two to three-point increase in BMI, increased the risk of developing colon cancer 9 percent and rectal cancer 11 percent.

The second study, involving 307,677 Danish people born from 1930 to 1987, used a similar grouping of BMI. The risk of developing a clot-related stroke in early adult life increased by 26 percent in women and 21 percent in men for each unit of increase in being overweight at all stages of childhood, but especially at age 13.

Although neither study proves that excess weight in childhood itself, as opposed to being overweight as an adult, is responsible for the higher rates of cancer and stroke, overweight children are much more likely to become overweight adults — unless they adopt and maintain healthier patterns of eating and exercise.

According to the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, obesity most often develops from ages five to six or during the teen years, and “studies have shown that a child who is obese between the ages of 10 and 13 has an 80 percent chance of becoming an obese adult.”

In a study published in 2014 in The New England Journal of Medicine, Solveig Cunningham and colleagues at Emory University found that “overweight five-year-olds were four times as likely as normal-weight children to become obese by age 14.”

The study, which involved a representative sample of 7,738 kindergartners, found that the risk of becoming obese did not differ by socioeconomic status, race or ethnic group, or birth weight. Rather, it showed that excess weight gain early in life is a risk factor for obesity later in childhood across the entire population.

Children are generally considered obese when their BMI is at or above the 95th percentile for others of the same age and sex. About one-third of US children are overweight or obese. By 2012, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports, 18 percent of children and 21 percent of adolescents were obese.

The adverse effects of excess weight in childhood and adolescence do not necessarily wait to show up later in life.

In a review of complications resulting from youthful obesity, Stephen Daniels, a pediatrician at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and the Children’s Hospital in Denver, found that problems in many organ systems were often apparent long before adulthood. They include high blood pressure; insulin resistance and Type 2 diabetes; high blood levels of heart-damaging triglycerides and low levels of protective high-density lipoprotein cholesterol; nonalcoholic fatty liver disease; obstructive sleep apnea; asthma; and excess stress on the musculoskeletal system resulting in abnormal bone development, knee and hip pain, and difficulty walking.

Problems of youthful obesity go beyond physical ones. Obese adolescents have higher rates of depression, which in itself might foster poor eating and exercise patterns that add to their weight problem and result in a poor quality of life that persists into adulthood.

In a study conducted in Singapore, researchers reported that “individuals who were obese in childhood are more likely to have poor body image and low self-esteem and confidence, even more so than those with adult onset obesity.”

Another study by Jeffrey Schwimmer of the University of California, San Diego, and colleagues found that obese children and adolescents reported a diminished quality of life that was comparable to that of children with cancer.

Taken together, the data speak to the critical importance of preventing undue weight gain in young children, a task that depends largely on parents, who are responsible for what and how much children eat and how much physical activity they engage in.

As researchers from the University Medical Center Groningen in the Netherlands put it: “Early recognition of overweight or obesity in children by their parents is of utmost importance, allowing interventions to start at a young age.”

Yet, they found in a study of the parents of 2,203 five-year-olds, “parents underestimated their overweight child in 85 percent of the cases.”

Though it seems logical that parents who think their children are overweight would make a special effort to assure they would “grow into” their weight as they get older, research has shown the opposite. Such children tend to get even fatter, according to findings from the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children reported in April in the journal Pediatrics by Eric Robinson of the University of Liverpool and Angelina Sutin of Florida State University College of Medicine.

Even being labeled overweight can itself be damaging and make it harder for children to avoid bad habits, the authors suggested.

A 2014 study of girls ages 10 to 19 found that “regardless of actual weight, adolescents who reported having been labeled ‘too fat’ by a family member or peer were more likely to become obese nearly a decade later.”

“I encourage parents to change the environment at home,” Daniels said in an interview. “Without being authoritarian, they should limit high-calorie-dense foods, keep sugar-sweetened beverages out of the house and assure that kids eat the right amount of fruits and vegetables and fewer calorie-dense snacks. Parents also need to be tuned into opportunities for physical activity and set hard-and-fast rules about television and time spent on electronics.”

Following the “5210” daily program endorsed by the American Academy of Pediatrics can help: Aim for five fruits and vegetables a day; keep recreational screen time to two hours or less; include at least one hour of active play; and skip sugar-sweetened beverages and drink water.

Food Safety for Chronic Disease Prevention Through Product Reformulation

This topic was moderated by Hui-Yu Sheu, M.S., R.D. and Angela H. Lu, Ph.D., R.D and featured three lectures.


Elizabeth Dunford, Ph.D., Food Policy Division, The George Institute for Global Health, Australia discussed challenges and opportunities in monitoring changes in the global food supply. In 2010 The Food Monitoring Group established a global branded food composition database to track the nutritional content of foods and make comparisons between countries, food companies and over time in an effort to observe whether companies were adhering to their reformulation commitments. Dr. Dunford shared lessons learned from establishing this database and discussed challenges and opportunities arising from ongoing change in the global food supply. Dr. Dunford noted that data from Australia and the United Kingdom were used to define baseline levels of sodium in major food categories to enable monitoring of changes over time. Comparisons of sodium levels between years exposed the limited progress with sodium reduction in Australia and New Zealand, with data presented at the individual company level.


Wen-Han Pan, Ph.D., Researcher, National Health Research Institutes, Taiwan gave a lecture entitled, “Product Reformulation Embracing Whole Foods and Cultural Needs for Better Health.” Dr. Pan discussed the prevalence of processed foods in the modern diet, and the health-related reasons why processed food products may be reformulated to include higher amounts of whole foods. Dr. Pan shared options for enriching ingredient lists further with the benefits of increased amounts of whole foods, including nuts, seeds, whole grain products, low-fat dairy products, and dairy products supplemented with calcium, fiber, vitamin D, and probiotics.


Rutger Schilpzand, Executive Secretary, Choices International Foundation, Belgium discussed product reformulation driven by front-of-pack logo systems. Mr. Schilpzand shared experiences from the implementation of a front-of-pack logo used in several European countries. The implementation of this logo led to product reformulation in some sectors, and as such has had a positive impact on consumer health and consumer knowledge. Due to its positive effect, this front-of-pack logo has been implemented in several countries and is also being used as a model for the development of national logo systems in others. Mr. Schilpzand cited a study done at VU University of Amsterdam Kroonenburg that found the logo system to have been a strong driver for product reformulation.


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Egg products found to contain nicarbazin: FDA

Egg products found to contain nicarbazin: FDA

Source: Taipei Time ( By Lee I-chia  /  Staff reporter A Food and Drug Administration (FDA)...

The urgency in fighting childhood obesity

The urgency in fighting childhood obesity

Source: Taipei Times ( Problems of obesity are not limited to physical illnesses, as...

Food Safety for Chronic Disease Prevention Through Product Reformulation

Food Safety for Chronic Disease Prevention Through Product Reformulation

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