Health

Widespread weight loss may reap health benefits
October 9, 2007 06:22 PM -

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - If a large swath of the population cut down on calories and took up exercise, the resulting health benefits could be extensive, a new study suggests.

The findings are based on an analysis of the economic crisis in Cuba from 1989 to 2000. While the circumstances were dire, and Cuban citizens' health suffered in certain ways, researchers found that significant health benefits also emerged.

Specifically, people's overall calorie intake declined, while their physical activity levels climbed -- mainly as a result of walking or biking instead of paying for public transportation.

Shopping cart goes high-tech
October 9, 2007 05:34 PM -

LONDON (Reuters) - Supermarket shoppers may soon be cruising the aisles with "intelligent" shopping carts that warn them if they're buying too much junk food, technology experts say.

While many would be happy enough if they could simply get their trolley to go in a straight line, the high-tech model will be fitted with a computer screen and barcode scanner.

It will read each product's individual code to give customers information about calories, nutrition, ethical sourcing and the environment.

National Mall To Test "Green" Lawn Care
October 9, 2007 04:57 PM -

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Attempting to prove to the nation that organic lawn care techniques are safe and effective, one of the highest profile lawns in the world is about to try a massive 'green' makeover.

The two-week project involves plowing a section of existing lawn at the National Mall in Washington, D.C., adding compost, other natural soil amendments and fertilizers before reseeding the area. The project was organized by SafeLawns.org. Representatives from the natural lawn care company will return to the Nation’s Capitol frequently in the next two years to continue an organic maintenance program on the area that measures more than four acres.

Study: Bad Relationship Can Cause Heart Attack
October 9, 2007 10:09 AM - Michael Kahn

LONDON (Reuters) - It has been the stuff of great romantic novels and blockbuster films. Doctors have long suspected it. A study of 9,000 British civil servants has at last established it is possible to die of a 'broken heart'.

The study, reported in the Archives of Internal Medicine, found the stress and anxiety of hostile, angry relationships can boost the risk of developing heart disease. Chances of a heart attack or chest pain rose by 34 percent compared to people on good terms with a spouse or partner.

"A person's heart condition seems to be influenced by negative intimate relationships," researchers wrote. "We showed that the negative aspects of close relationships...are associated with coronary heart disease."

New Study Shows Genetically Engineered Corn Could Pollute Aquatic Ecosystems
October 8, 2007 06:56 PM -

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- A study by an Indiana University environmental science professor and several colleagues suggests a widely planted variety of genetically engineered corn has the potential to harm aquatic ecosystems. The study is being published this week by the journal Proceedings of the National Academies of Sciences.

Researchers, including Todd V. Royer, an assistant professor in the IU School of Public and Environmental Affairs, established that pollen and other plant parts containing toxins from genetically engineered Bt corn are washing into streams near cornfields.

They also conducted laboratory trials that found consumption of Bt corn byproducts produced increased mortality and reduced growth in caddisflies, aquatic insects that are related to the pests targeted by the toxin in Bt corn.

Scientists create “interspecies” animal using embryonic stem cells
October 8, 2007 06:37 PM - Paul Schaefer, ENN

Liverpool, UK - Embrionic stem (ES) cells from a wood mouse into the early embryo of a house mouse, an international team of scientists has produced normal healthy animals made up a mixture of cells from each the two distantly related species. This is the first time that stem cells from one mammalian species have been shown to contribute extensively to development when introduced into the embryo of another, very different species.

Poll: Majority See Organic Food As Safer, Tastier, Better for Environment, Healthier, More Expensive
October 8, 2007 03:00 PM -

ROCHESTER, N.Y.- It costs more, but it's worth it, and it's better for the environment and safer. And while those who buy organic food regularly are still a minority, their numbers are growing bigger all the time. Most organic food buyers overwhelmingly believe it tastes better and is worth the extra cost.

These are some of the findings of a Harris Poll of 2,392 adults surveyed online between September 11 and 18, 2007 by Harris Interactive®.

Vaccine-derived polio spreads in Nigeria
October 8, 2007 09:48 AM - , SciDevNet

Sixty-nine children in Nigeria have been partially paralysed after weakened viruses from polio vaccines were inadvertently transmitted to people in unvaccinated regions in the north of the country.

Festus Adu, director of the WHO's polio laboratory in Ibadan, Nigeria, told SciDev.Net that this polio outbreak is only appearing in areas where people are refusing to be vaccinated or where there is not enough oral polio vaccine.

"Designer mice" pioneers win Nobel for medicine
October 8, 2007 08:57 AM - Reuters

The researchers who pioneered the creation of "designer mice" to track the role of different genes in human development and disease have won the 2007 Nobel medicine prize, Sweden's Karolinska Institute said on Monday.

The prestigious 10 million Swedish crown ($1.54 million) prize recognized Mario Capecchi, Martin Evans and Oliver Smithies for helping discover "the roles of numerous genes in embryonic development, adult physiology, aging and disease".

Seven dead in Wisconsin after deputy opens fire
October 7, 2007 07:46 PM - Reuters

CHICAGO (Reuters) - A sheriff's deputy shot and killed six young people in the northern Wisconsin town of Crandon before being killed himself after a manhunt, a local TV station reported on Sunday, quoting police and witnesses.

The Forest County Sheriff's Department said seven people were dead, including the deputy, Tyler Peterson, according to a report on the WJFW-TV Web site.

The sheriff's department would not confirm details.

 

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