• Air Quality Awareness Week Focuses on Reducing Exposure to Ozone, Particle Pollution / Keep your eye on the AQI

    WASHINGTON – EPA, state and local air agencies across the country are marking Air Quality Awareness Week by reminding Americans to stay "Air Aware" to reduce their exposure – and their contribution – to air pollution. By following recommendations of the Air Quality Index (AQI), people can take simple steps to reduce the amount of pollution they breathe in. The AQI is EPA’s color-coded tool for reporting daily air quality and forecasts for common air pollutants, including ozone (smog) and particle pollution. >> Read the Full Article
  • Science Closing in on Mystery of Age-Related Memory Loss, Says UAB Neurobiologist

    BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - The world's scientific community may be one step closer to understanding age-related memory loss, and to developing a drug that might help boost memory. In an editorial published May 7 in Science, J. David Sweatt, Ph.D., chair of the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) Department of Neurobiology, says that drugs known as histone deacetylase inhibitors are showing great promise in stopping memory loss - and even in boosting the formation of memory in animal models. >> Read the Full Article
  • Stronger evidence pollution damages the heart

    The evidence is stronger than ever that pollution from industry, traffic and power generation causes strokes and heart attacks, and people should avoid breathing in smog, the American Heart Association said on Monday. Fine particulate matter from burning fossil fuels such as gasoline, coal and oil is the clearest offender, the group said. "Particulate matter appears to directly increase risk by triggering events in susceptible individuals within hours to days of an increased level of exposure, even among those who otherwise may have been healthy for years," said Dr. Robert Brook of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, who headed the group writing the report. >> Read the Full Article
  • Gaining Weight and Having Type 2 Diabetes

    Have you ever wondered how can you possibly gain so much weight when somebody else eats even more and gains less? Obviously, some of the answer is how much exercise one does. Another part of the answer is shown in the first study of its type by Australian researchers. Healthy people with a genetic predisposition to Type 2 diabetes gain more weight overeating over the short term than their non-genetically prone counterparts. >> Read the Full Article
  • Surprising Skin Cancer Risk: Too Much Driving

    Long hours behind the wheel may increase the risk of skin cancer, according to a surprising new study. Facial skin cancers were found to occur more often on the left-side — the side that's next to the window while driving — among a group of about 1,050 patients in Saint Louis. The findings were most significant for men. While the results show only an association (not a cause-effect link) and would need to be replicated in a larger population to be viewed as firm, they call attention to what might be overlooked by otherwise sun-conscious citizens — exposure to UV rays through the car window. >> Read the Full Article
  • Surprising New Diet Tip: Lose Weight Quickly

    The key to long-term weight loss and maintenance might be to lose weight quickly rather than gradually, at least in the initial stages of dieting, a new study suggests. More research is needed to determine the best approach, however. >> Read the Full Article
  • Environmental Cancer Risk

    There is a body of evidence linking general environmental exposures to cancer. A report was released today by the President's Cancer Panel which finds that the true burden of environmentally induced cancer is underestimated. The Panel's report, "Reducing Environmental Cancer Risk: What We Can Do Now," concludes that while environmental exposure is not a new front on the war on cancer, the harm from this group of carcinogens has not been addressed adequately by the National Cancer Program. >> Read the Full Article
  • Tom’s of Maine: 40 Years of Success and Innovation

    With all the talk and shtick over "green" products, it’s easy to forgot that Tom's of Maine has long been a leader in natural consumer products and sustainable business practices. Started in 1970 with a $5000 loan, the company's products now take shelf space at 40,000 retail outlets, including Trader Joe's and Whole Foods. From its beginnings, with its groovy ClearLake Laundry Detergent, Tom's has still shown product innovation, most recently with its new line of toothpaste. Colgate-Palmolive bought 84% of the company in 2006, but one important stipulation of the deal allowed Tom's of Maine to continue its good-for-the-earth business practices without interference from above. >> Read the Full Article
  • New EPA Regulations Target Mercury and Other Toxic Emissions from Boilers and Solid Waste Incinerators

    The US Environmental Protection Agengy (EPA) is currently issuing a new proposal to cut mercury emissions by more than half as well as other pollutants from boilers, process heaters, and solid waste incinerators. Toxic air emissions have been shown to cause cancer and other serious health problems for affected people. The main purpose of this proposal would be to reduce health and environmental risk in a cost-effective way. The EPA estimates that the new rules would yield more than $5 in health savings for every dollar spent in implementing the rules. >> Read the Full Article
  • Fishing off the Coast of Louisana

    The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is restricting fishing for a minimum of ten days in federal waters most affected by the BP oil spill, largely between Louisiana state waters at the mouth of the Mississippi River to waters off Florida’s Pensacola Bay. The closure is effective immediately. The off shore fisheries provide food and a number of jobs. The questions of testing and monitoring seafood quality will be watched carefully by NOAA, local state agencies and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. >> Read the Full Article