SciAm: “Young Blood” Anti-Aging Mechanism Called into Question.
Discover: Young Blood Heals Fractures in Older Bones.
Vox: Health insurance plans are getting crummier, and these charts prove it.
Deductibles are getting insane for the amount of $ paid. And many don’t allow HSA backup.
Motherboard: Six Men Spent 520 Days Locked in a Room to See If We Could Live on Mars.
Salt balance was a problem.
Guardian.UK: Texas governor stops cities and towns banning hydraulic gas mining.
“The governor of Texas, Greg Abbott, has signed a bill into law that prohibits cities and towns from banning a gas drilling practice known as hydraulic fracking, giving the state sole authority over oil and gas regulation.” Would you expect any less from Texas?
Slate: Pollen in honey cannot desensitize the immune system.
Someone tried to sell me on this a long time ago. Never noticed a darned thing. “You have to do it longer!” Do you know how long a jar of honey lasts in my cabinet? Waste of time and space. So I went back to buying honey I liked the taste of.
SciAm: Highly Contagious, Antibiotic-Resistant Food Poisoning Establishes U.S. Presence.
“Because of the increasing threat of multidrug-resistant shigella, the CDC and other health agencies recommend doctors only prescribe antibiotics for severe cases. Shigellosis can actually clear up on its own with proper hydration and rest.”
ScienceDaily: Drug perks up old muscles and aging brains.
“A new study shows that a drug that blocks TGF-beta1, which is now being tested for its anticancer properties, makes brain and muscle tissue more youthful.” No doubt, the new ‘T-shops’ opening all over the country will be quite interested.
FlowingData: Illegal to collect environmental data in Wyoming.
Reputation more important than public health? Hmmm. The fear of discouraging tourism encourages all kinds of bizarre ethical choices.
King’s College London: Short-sightedness becoming more common across Europe.
Reminds me to step outside and focus on distance occasionally during the day ...
KurzweilAI: Researchers reverse bacterial resistance to antibiotics.
“Managing resistance in any drug environment is extremely difficult, because bacteria evolve so quickly, becoming highly resistant after many mutations. To find optimal cycling strategies, the researchers tested up to six drugs in rotation at a time and found optimal plans for reversing the evolution of drug-resistant bacteria.”
Mashable: Your beard is dirty as a toilet?
Glass half empty? Look on the bright side - grow a beard, give yourself a free fecal transplant. There.
Later: Apparently a bit overblown, in sensationalist style. Your smartphone may worry you more.
BBC: Nepal earthquake, ‘Worst-affected’ village of Langtang.
Wiped out by landslide and avalanche. The video is harrowing.
Guardian.UK: Colorado man first in US to contract plague from a dog, study says.
“The transmission from dog to human is the first known case in the US. Three more patients were also sickened with plague, including two veterinary workers and one of the man’s close associates.” Plague fleas gather at the entrances to burrows. Keep your dogs away from rodent holes, and be sure to use strong, effective flea-preventative. None of this “brewer’s yeast” all-natural hocus-pocus. It doesn’t work.
DDDMag: Strong Link Found Between Dementia, Common Anticholinergic Drugs.
“Three months of taking either daily Benadryl, Advil PM, Tylenol PM, or Motrin PM pills, for example, is associated with an increased risk of Alzheimer’s of 19 percent.” Thanks to the sharp eyes of Dan Hartung [LakeFXDan] on FB.
NY Times: As Human Crisis Takes Priority After Quake, a Nation’s Treasures Become Its Scrap.
Angry Bear: Jeff Jacoby on drug prices.
Analyzing a justification for doubling of drug prices: “Jacoby’s analysis is a classic example that if so many bloggers or public pundits knew half as much as they though they knew, they would be geniuses.”
ArtDaily: New research to shed fresh light on the impact of industrialisation on the human body.
“Modern health trends have seen a shift towards increasing life expectancy but we want to look again at what are often thought of as ‘man-made’ conditions like obesity and cancer. Given today’s more sedentary lifestyles, far removed from the physically active and natural existence of most of our forebears, there are some big questions about the origins of these diseases and how they relate to the modern environment.” Note, scientists are finding cancer in some very old bones.
News.com.AU: Belle Gibson - ‘No, None of it is true’.
“Factitious disorder is self driving and self perpetuating, maintained by the attention that people receive. Sufferers who use social media have a wider audience and therefore a greater propensity to receive the attention they are looking for by pretending to have the illness.” No remorse, endangering real cancer patients’ lives with bad advice. Just a plea of “I’m screwed up. I have Mommy issues. Give me some respect.”
PS Mag: The Debate Over GMOs Is About to Change.
“As GMO foods with benefits aimed at consumers rather than corporate farms, these apples and potatoes have the potential to change our conversation on genetically modified foods. This is because, unlike most GMO foods sold today, they don’t conceal what they are — they deliberately give the power to choose back to the consumer.” If this had been the way GMOs were originally introduced, I suspect nonacceptance/acceptance would have been much different. What happens to the conversation, if these potatoes prove to save lives (lower cancer rates among consumers)?
The New Yorker: Spalding Gray’s Catastrophe.
“One of the special features of Spalding’s monologues was that, onstage at least, he rarely repeated himself; the stories always came out in slightly different ways, with different emphases. He was a gifted inventor of the truth, of whatever seemed true to him at the moment.” I consider myself privileged to have seen him perform live twice, at McCarter Theatre in Princeton. Riveting, both times. Both before his accident. RIP, Spalding. RIP.
JAMA: Autism Occurrence by MMR Vaccine Status Among US Children.
Authority Nutrition: Sugar Alcohols - Good or Bad?
Erythritol for the win, here. If you MUST have teh sweet and want to dodge calories.
Observer: Nootropic Brain Drugs Rise in Popularity for Today’s Cutthroat Corporate Climbers.
Reminds me of salespersons popping Prozac for its ‘mood brightening’ capabilities in the ‘90’s. There was a belief system that grew around it; if you didn’t pop ‘Prozac-Pez’, you couldn’t compete effectively with those who did.
Guardian.UK: Alzheimer’s disease study - caveats aside, the findings are encouraging.
“The latest study suggests that in Alzheimer’s, immune cells that normally protect the brain instead begin to consume a vital nutrient called arginine. By blocking this process with a drug, the team from Duke University in North Carolina were able to prevent the formation of plaques and also halt memory loss in mice.”