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Blueberry is a flowering plant that originates from North America, but it can be found on almost all continents today. Blueberry plants prefer a colder climate and they grow on sandy, acidic soil. Wild species of blueberry tolerate drought and fire. Certain types of blueberries produce more fruit after forest fires. According to some studies, blueberries have been part of the human diet for 13,000 years.
Blueberries contain iron, phosphorous, calcium, magnesium, manganese, zinc, and vitamin K. Each of these is a component of bone. Adequate intake of these minerals and vitamins contributes to building and maintaining bone structure and strength. Iron and zinc fulfil crucial roles in maintaining the strength and elasticity of bones and joints. Low intakes of vitamin K have been linked to a higher risk of bone fracture.
Shepherds discovered coffee in Ethiopia circa 800 A.D. Legend has it that 9th century goat herders noticed the effect caffeine had on their goats, who appeared to dance after eating coffee berries. A local monk then made a drink with coffee berries and found that it kept him awake at night, thus the original cup of coffee was born. Coffee is the second most traded commodity on earth. According to the Global Exchange, there are approximately 25 million farmers in over 50 countries involved in producing coffee. The number one commodity? Oil.
Beer is the worlds most widely consumed alcoholic beverage and the third-most popular drink overall (after water and tea). Beer is one of the world's oldest prepared beverages, possibly dating back to the early Neolithic or 9500 BC. It was the accepted practice in Babylon, 4,000 years ago, that for a month after the wedding, the brides father would supply his son-in law with all the mead he could drink. Mead is a honey beer, and because their calendar was lunar based, this period was called the honey month, or what we know today as the honeymoon.
Speaking of spaghetti...and meatballs: the Italians only ate meat a few times a month. So, when they came to America, where meat was so plentiful, they incorporated meat into their cooking more often, making meatballs an American invention. Thomas Jefferson is credited with introducing macaroni to the United States. It seems that he fell in love with a certain dish he sampled in Naples, while serving as the U.S. Ambassador to France.
The record for the worlds largest pizza depends on how you slice it. According to Guinness World Records, the record for the worlds largest circular pizza was set at Norwood Hypermarket in South Africa in 1990. The gigantic pie measured 122 feet 8 inches across, weighed 26,883 pounds, and contained 9,920 pounds of flour, 3,968 pounds of cheese, and 1,984 pounds of sauce. In 2005, the record for the worlds largest rectangular pizza was set in Iowa Falls, Iowa. Pizza restaurant owner Bill Bahr and a team of 200 helpers created the 129 X 98.6-foot pizza from 4,000 pounds of cheese.