What Those White Stripes on Chicken Breasts Mean for Your Health

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Chicken has long been marketed as a lighter alternative to red meats like beef, pork, and lamb. But as Thrillist reports, consumers shouldn’t necessarily be so quick to label poultry products as a healthy food. Thanks to modern farming methods, some chicken sold in stores has more than three times the fat it’s supposed to, and this can be observed in the stripes of white tissue running through the meat.

“White striping” occurs when factory farmers breed birds to grow faster and larger, a practice Compassion in World Farming brought to light in a recent video. This can lead to adverse health effects for chickens, including muscular tissue disorders. Sometimes the disorders manifest in white lines that cut through the meat, creating a striped or “wooden” appearance.

The condition isn’t just bad news for chickens. In 2013, scientists from the University of Bologna in Italy reported that chicken with white striping exceeded normal fat content by 224 percent. But that doesn’t mean meat-eaters should drop poultry from their diets for good. Chicken still tends to have less cholesterol and saturated fat than red meat, and products with the muscular disorders are rare.

That being said, shoppers looking to cut extra fat from their meals should learn to spot white striping so they can avoid it at the supermarket. The photo below shows cases that range from normal to extreme.

[h/t Thrillist]

Ground Beef Targeted by Massive Recall Might Still Be in Your Freezer

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More than 132,000 pounds of ground beef produced by Cargill Meat Solutions were recalled on September 19 due to a risk of E. coli O26, according to a news release from the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service. The affected beef was produced and packaged on June 21, so you may want to check your freezer for any burger patties or homemade bolognese sauce you stored away over the summer.

“FSIS is concerned that some product may be frozen and in consumers’ freezers,” the agency said in a statement. “Consumers who have purchased these products are urged not to consume them. These products should be thrown away or returned to the place of purchase.”

Cargill Meat Solutions is based in Colorado, but these products have been shipped across the country. One death and 17 illnesses have been linked to the outbreak so far, with the dates of illness ranging from July 5 to July 25. According to the FSIS, people usually become ill within three to four days of exposure to E. coli O26. Symptoms include diarrhea (often bloody) and vomiting.

The recalled products have the establishment number “EST. 86R” inside the USDA inspection mark on the package. To see the 12 varieties of ground beef that were affected, click the following link [PDF].

The 'Pet First Aid' App From the Red Cross Prepares Pet Parents for Almost Any Situation

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People who have owned a cat or dog for years know intimate facts about their pet's health—like how many pairs of shoes they can eat without getting sick, or how many hours a day they can sleep without warranting a trip to the vet. But pet parents just starting out are often left in the dark when it comes to decoding their fur baby's behaviors. The Red Cross aims to demystify the process of raising a pet with a new app called Pet First Aid.

As Life Hacker reports, the first aid app is designed to prepare pet parents for a range of situations regarding their pet's health. If your dog is panting particularly hard after a long walk, the app will tell you if their breathing rate is normal; if your cat looks dehydrated, it can show you how to test its capillary refill time.

The resource is best used as a study tool, so if a pet health emergency does occur, you'll be prepared for it. After reading up on guides detailing pet CPR and how to treat a pet that's bleeding, you can test your animal-care knowledge with built-in quizzes.

The Red Cross makes it clear that its app is no replacement for a licensed medical professional, and even gives you the option to upload your vet's phone number or search for nearby animal hospitals within the app. Hopefully, the app's features for non-emergency situations, like its pet-friendly hotel locator, will get the most use.

You can download Pet First Aid for free from the Google Play store.

[h/t Life Hacker]

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