Monthly Archives: December 2018

Work Done While Eating a Cookie: An Interesting Application of Physics in Day to Day Life

In this article we will take an interesting question on theoretical work done while eating a cookie. We will apply the basic concepts of Physics to answer it. We will see that the answer predicted by Physics varies drastically to what we experience in our daily life. In actuality though, the two answers are not very different. We just need to change our perspective to actually see that they are essentially the same.

Question: How much work is involved in eating a 27-gram cookie, if it can be eaten in 6 bites and the distance from hand to mouth is 24 centimeters? The cookie is raised to the mouth at a 45° angle and is put down after each bite. Assume that each bite of cookie has the same mass. (If you need to eat a cookie in order to visualize this problem better, feel free to do so!)

Answer: Assuming that we move the cookie slowly to our mouth, the force applied by our hand must equal to the weight of the cookie. Whether we are lifting up or moving it down, the force applied by hand is always in the upward direction so as to counter the weight of the cookie. When we are moving up the work done by our hand is positive as the force applied and motion are in the same direction.

When we are moving down, the work done by our hand is negative as the force applied by hand and the motion of cookie is in opposite direction. So we can say that the if we move the cookie to our mouth for the first time; we lifted a mass of m*1=27 grams to a height of h=24cm*sin 45= 17 cm (approx). Our bite was just 27/6=4.5 grams. So the remaining m2=27-4.5= 22.5 grams was shifted downward. So in this first trip of upward and downward motion, the total work done was w= (m1*gh – m2*gh)=(m1 – m2)*g*h= 4.5 grams*9.8m/s^2*17cm=0.0075 Joules. Similarly for the next trip, work done will be same. So when we add all the 6 trips, we will get a net work done of W= 6 times of 0.0075 joules. Hence W= 0.0045 Joules. Here we note that the theoretical net work done is simply m*g*h where m is the total mass of the cookie. So whether we eat it in 6 bites or 60 bites does not make any difference as far as the theoretical work done by the hand is concerned.

In real life though if we eat that cookie in say 60 bites, we feel more tired. The reason is simple. Our hand has to lift its own mass as well so for every trip it does work just to move itself up or down. This work is not useful though. So even though Physics might say that its only the mass of the cookie that matters and not the number of bites, but in real life we need to do more work than simply m*g*h. Here it must be noted that h= perpendicular height of 17cm which was obtained by the formula h= 24*cos 45=17 cm.

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Karabij – A Middle Eastern Cookie

Karabij is a popular Middle Eastern cookie served with Natef. Natef is a special white cream used for dipping with Karabij.

Karabij are one element in the Middle Eastern cookies family, which in turn is a class of Arabic sweets. It is a cookie made of semolina dough, which makes it very delicate and easy to break. It is baked, and it is abundant in pistachio nuts.

While other Middle Eastern cookies like Mamoul and Mamoul-Mad are filled with many types of nuts such as pistachios and walnuts, as well as dates, Karabij on the other hand is always filled with only pistachios. Even though it is perfectly possible to use a walnuts or dates filling with Karabij cookies, it has been the custom not to do so and to use only pistachio nuts filling with Karabij.

Karabij are essentially small pistachios filled Mamoul cookies. They share the same ingredients as Mamoul and are prepared and baked in the same manner. However, Karabij are usually smaller in size than Mamoul because they are intended to be dipped in Natef. Even though Mamoul is made into different sizes, Karabij are always made into a small longitudinal shape easy to use for dipping.

Karabij are great for those who like dipping. It is a favorite dessert to eat while watching a movie for example. It is much healthier than chips or chocolate since it contains healthy pistachio nuts.

Karabij are popular in Arabic countries. Their popularity did not spread much to the western world because they are closely associated with the white Lebanese cream Natef which is not popular in the Western world.

Karabij are small in size, and one can eat couple dozens of them before noticing. They are in general high in calories, just like any other cookies, so people should watch how many they eat.

These small cookies are considered to be in the same category as Mamoul, Mamoul-Mad, and Ghraybeh, which are all under the class of Middle Eastern cookies. However, while Ghraybeh is a sugar cookie, all the rest are semolina based cookies filled with nuts such as pistachio and walnuts and with dates as well.

Middle Eastern cookies are consumed especially during holidays and celebrations in Middle Easter and Arab countries. They are also the preferred gift during religious holidays and celebration.

In summary, Karabij are Middle Eastern cookies exclusively dipped with the white cream Natef and offered for desert.

Why Product Demonstrations Make Better Business Sense

Walk into any store or mall today, whether it is a grocery store or a boutique store, a high-end mall or the shopping center next door, and chances are that you will see a product demonstration going on there. This could be to demonstrate an electrical appliance, such as a kitchen appliance, or it could be to demonstrate a new cosmetic or beauty product, or it could be a food demonstration that gives people a chance to sample the food or beverage that is being marketed. No matter what category of shopping center promotions you see, you can rest assured that there will be a beeline of people eagerly waiting to get a sample or try the new product. This could be just the curious among the shoppers or those who are serious shoppers who are ready to actually buy the product.

Even if the product demonstration is given to 10 people, you can rest assured that at least half of those would be willing to buy the product after trying it out. This is why a product demonstration is such an effective form of marketing for companies across different industries as it gives a much better return on investment than other forms of advertising, while also being cost effective. Unlike print, electronic, and digital media or social media marketing which can tend to get very expensive, a product demonstration is more value for money and delivers results, especially when planned, designed, and implemented by a professional company that has considerable experience and expertise in shopping center promotions.

One of the major areas that shopping center promotions are so successful is in the food and beverage industry. This is because a food demonstration gives people the chance to actually taste, smell, and/or see what the food or beverage product is like. This is a totally different experience, one that allows them to enjoy the product using their five senses. Compared to just reading about the product, or seeing it on television, or seeing it on the supermarket shelf, the experience of actually sampling the product, experiencing what it tastes like, smells like, and looks like, is enough to make most people actually buy the product. This is true even if they have been loyal to a certain brand for many years.

A product demonstration is especially effective in households where the children are the decision makers when it comes to buying food and beverages! Children are known to be notoriously loyal and stick to a favorite brand. Parents do not often want to upset this status quo. So the most effective way that companies can get such a demographic to buy their new brand is to give the children a chance to sample the product! And this is something that most children will love to do, as they are naturally curious. Once they are won over, then winning over their parents is a walk in the park! This is something that a television commercial or a print advertisement cannot achieve, no matter how well made or expensive it may be!

Become a Chocolatier

Do you love chocolate? Do you also love fine foods, baking and cooking? If you are only looking to improve your chocolate skills by making dishes at home, you can start with the many cookbooks on the subject. To be a simple chocolate maker, you can start at home, go to a continuing education class, or attend some classes at a local junior college. But if you are looking to really cash in on your love of chocolate, you may want to become a Chocolatier.

If you are more serious about the art of making chocolate, you can attend a culinary school to learn the trade. Learning how to transform the raw cocoa bean into chocolate is usually the first step of a chocolatier. Chocolate makers take chocolate in its original form, the bean, and then transform it into delicious candies and baked goods. Chocolates will range in sweetness, butter fat content and extra ingredients.

Becoming a Master Chocolatier

You can pursue your chocolate obsession as a chocolate maker, a culinary pastry chef, a confectioner or Master Chocolatier. A chocolate maker might be self-taught, but a culinary chef or Master Chocolatier will require specialized training.

To become a pastry chef, one will need extensive training at one of the many Culinary Institutes around the world. Any university that offers culinary programs or a specialty school will normally have a pastry program. As a pastry chef you will gain knowledge of the entire industry including baking, chocolate making and confections. Some schools offer specialties in chocolate but most are broad based.

Many of the institutions offer programs that run from bachelors degrees in Applied Science to first level certificates of knowledge. Different opportunities will open for those who hold a degree as a Pastry chef. A pastry chef can learn to specialize in chocolate or choose to branch out into other culinary avenues, such as baked goods.

The last phase of learning the skill of chocolate making is to become a Chocolatier. Chocolatiers specialize in chocolate, as well as dishes that have chocolate as one of the main ingredients. Once you achieve this level you will be able to deal with chocolate in all forms!

There are only a handful of schools in the world that focus only on the art of making chocolate. Once you attend such a school you will graduate as a master chocolatier. These schools area scattered all over the world, including Belgium and South Africa. These programs teach every aspect of chocolate making and the chocolate business. In the US, the Arts Institutes of America and American Culinary Institute have pastry chef programs where chocolate making is part of the curriculum.

The Components of the Food We Eat: Minerals and Trace Elements


Most, if not all of the non-organic elements (known as minerals) can be found in the human body. About 15 of them are known to be essential in the diet and might be derived from food. Minerals are classified into major minerals/macro-minerals and micro-minerals/trace elements.

Macro-minerals are those present in the largest amounts in body tissue. They include Calcium, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Sodium, Potassium, Chloride, Iron and Zinc.

Micro-minerals (or trace metals) are equally important but are needed in minute quantities. They include Copper, Selenium, Iodine, Manganese, Chromium, Cobalt, Molybdenum and Fluoride. Although it is difficult to induce a dietary deficiency of these trace metals, most of them can be toxic if taken in excess amounts. Therefore, it is very important for individuals taking supplements to be aware of how much of these elements they are taking, especially if supplements are to be ingested for a long period of time. Nevertheless, the incidence of subclinical deficiency is not uncommon as far as Zinc and Selenium are concerned.


  • The constituents of bone and teeth, e.g. Calcium, Phosphorus and Magnesium.
  • The regulation of body composition and fluid balance e.g. Sodium, Potassium, Chloride, Magnesium and Phosphorus.
  • Essential adjuncts to many enzymes (cofactors) and other protein molecules such as haemoglobin, which are necessary for the release and utilisation of energy. This mainly includes Iron, Zinc, Selenium, Copper and Phosphorus.

As already stated, there are numerous nutrients that are essential to nutritional health and the only way to ensure their supply in the right proportion and the right amount is to consume a varied and balanced diet. Different foods contain a mixture of different nutrients and different nutrients are present in different quantities in different foods. To prevent or manage a disease like Osteoporosis, one should ensure adequate consumption of not only Calcium but also all elements which help in the absorption and metabolism of Calcium i.e. Magnesium, Phosphorus, Silica, Iron, Vitamin K, Vitamin D, etc. This, or satisfying the body’s needs for any other nutrient, can only be achieved by eating a variety of foods from all the main food groups.

Dietary Reference Values for fat and carbohydrate for adults as a percentage of daily total energy intake (percentage of food energy)

Value: /Individual minimum / Population average / Individual maximum /

Saturated fatty acids: / – /10(11)/ – /

Cis-polyunsaturated fatty acids: / – /6(6.5)/10 / – /

Cis-monounsaturated fatty acids: / – /12(13)/ – /

Trans fatty acids: / – /2(2)/ – /

Total fatty acids: / – /30(32.5)/ – /

TOTAL FAT: / – /33(35)/ – /

Non-milk extrinsic sugars: /0/10 (11)/ – /

Intrinsic and milk sugars and starch: / – /37 (39)/ – /

TOTAL CARBOHYDRATE: / – /47(50)/ – /


The average percentage contribution to total energy does not total 100% because figures for protein and alcohol are excluded. Protein intake averages to 15% of total energy, which is above the Reference Nutrient Intakes (RNI)

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Analysis of Tintern Abbey – A Poem Written by William Wordsworth

William Wordsworth, one of the greatest romantic poets that the world has ever seen, pioneered the movement of deliberately breaking away from the established customs. The magic of words that poems weave was previously employed to venerate great heroes or a grand love. The poets preceding Wordsworth often exposed the evils of the higher classes of people. It was Wordsworth who distanced himself from this tradition and began to study ordinary people such as farmers and shepherds. More importantly he was generous in studying and interpreting Nature and daffodils or linnets instead of dealing on the society. The poet’s personal views and feelings also began to impact his poems more strongly than they had done to the earlier versifiers and his lyric genius commenced to come to the fore.

The poem Tintern Abbey clearly testifies to Wordsworth’s love for Nature. From the time of his boyhood, Wordsworth had established a strong bond with Nature and with the passing time the relationship witnessed transformations, maturing his poetic abilities. As a lad he was enamoured by ‘glad animal movements’ while frolicking in the lap of Nature but with the coming of youth, he fell in love with the lovely colour and sounds of the natural scenery of the heavenly Lake district in England. The liaison seemed to pause there for some time. However, more was to come and with his growing older when he equated Nature with God Himself. In other words, both his heart and soul begin to draw sustenance from this tool of God from this point. By particularising Nature with the definite article ‘the’, Wordsworth implies the exclusivity of his guardian angel in the sense that it is her who protects him from the harsh cruelties of other people and strengthens the moral fabric of his character as well. The poet solemnly utters that unlike human beings, Nature never betrays the heart who loves her. Again it is the sublime face of Nature which has taught him how to go closer to human beings. The sad melody of humanity is heard clearly by the poet at this juncture. Being physically present by the side of a beautiful river from where he can see the distant snow-capped mountain tops, his spirit spreads wings and soars into impossible heights, having never been experienced by him before. Going into a trance, the poet feels transported to another world where everything in the universe seems to get connected.

The language of the poem is not very simple because of the deep and enigmatic musing that Wordsworth is engaging in this poem. The poet’s love for Nature as well as his fondness for his sister has both been clearly conveyed in the poem. We are simply won over by the indisputable sentiments articulated in the poem. The negative phrases such as “has not been to me as is a landscape to a blind man’s eye”, “not unborrowed from the eyes” etc. have added vigour and a sense of conviction to the poet’s uttering. The vivid imageries like those of water falling with an “inland murmur” and smoke rising from a vagrant dweller’s hut capture the soft sound made by the river and the smoke that was unexpected in the woods.

The use of diverse figures of speech like alliteration (Still sad music of humanity), metaphor (Half-extinguished thoughts), simile (The sounding cataract haunted me like a passion), and imagery (Green to the very door) have made what the poem is, an unforgettable lyrical verse capable of setting the indeterminate perturbations of the human heart to rest.

Food Brings People Together and at Its Essence is Love, Life and the Heart of Society

Food sustains life, yet it is so much more than something we need to nourish our bodies. Food at its essence is love, life and the heart of society. Food brings people together. It is the shared flavors of friendship and community. We like being with others enjoying the tastes and textures of food. Often through these shared experiences intimacy develops, memories exist and relationships thrive.

We fondly remember childhood food experiences, often wishing to duplicate those tastes that remind of us of home. Food is at the center of our sense of family and relationships. Certain aromas transport us back in time to the people and places we care about. We remember family picnics and food festivals.

No matter who we are or from which culture we come, every society gives careful thought to the daily preparation of meals for family, friends or even strangers. Food means love. This is true whether we are the cook or the one who eats.

Food is at the heart of society. We learn how to behave in society and interact with others in life based on the kind of eating ritual we experienced growing up. We are connected to others near and far through foods. We are interdependent because of global trade and commerce. The food on our tables comes from farmers everywhere throughout our planet.

Food, more than any other element in society, binds us together. Our lives are emotionally impacted by food production around the world. In some countries, people go hungry, while in others, people suffer illness caused by an over abundance of food.

A 13th-century Buddhist leader-philosopher, Nichiren, while in exile, wrote in a letter thanking a follower for sending him food: “Rice is not simply rice, it is life itself.” Food is life itself. It is our link with each other. Food is love, life and at the heart of society. Fittingly, the foods that are best for our bodies are also best for our society.