Saturday, August 22, 2015

American Council on Science and Health

Activism

FOIA as a weapon - If you think climate scientists can't be bought off by fossil fuel companies because they are too ethical but biologists are being bought off by much-smaller Monsanto, you have all the logic you need to work at or financially support groups like Natural Resources Defense Council and USRTK. Read more.

NJ Township to PennEast: None shall Pass! - Hopewell Township, New Jersey has decided to block an expansion of the PennEast Pipeline through the township. What were their reasons to object? The same tired anti-fracking rhetoric that has been spun by activists who have somehow forgotten they lobbied for more natural gas just two decades ago. Read more.

Evidence is soft that condoms cause ED - Humans have used some form of condom as a prevention against pregnancy and infection for centuries. They have been an instrumental tool in the public health arena. However, fears they may cause erectile dysfunction threaten their use. Read more.

Clean Energy: A Juggernaut, Leaving Environmentalists Behind - It used to be that clean energy was something that environmental lobbyists pretended to care about, at least when it came to raising money. Now that clean energy is becoming normalized across the spectrum: will it change the political landscape? Read more.

The Dying Gasp Of Chuck Benbrook's Credibility - A bizarre, rambling diatribe against genetically modified organisms (GMOs) has been published in the New England Journal of Medicine. It really is extraordinary in how random and disjointed and its written by the infamous Charles Benbrook. Read more.

EPA

EPA Earned Its Animas River Backlash - Which organization threatened a man with a $75,000-per-day fine because he built a pond on his own property and declared water a pollutant after encouraging the American Canoe Association to sue them over rapids in a river and then settled by telling one county they had to pay up to $500 million to fix the problem? Read more.

Health

That perennial question — low fat or low carb — addressed - Its the age old question: what’s better for weight loss — low fat or low carb? According to a new, well-controlled study, it may not really matter. But if your goal is to shed some body fat loss there may be a winner. Read more.

FDA adding confusion with “added sugars” label - FDA VS Health Canada: One gets it right on sugars on food labels, the other doesn’t. Guess which is which? The FDA is set to make the Food Label even more confusing for consumers — it won’t help people choose healthier diets. Read more.

Medicine

Privacy rights for the dying? Not on ABC - A show on ABC called NY Med is the latest example of questionable behavior by medical shows. The show aired footage of a man's final moments without receiving consent from the wife or family. The show claims the dead don't have any rights, but the family is devastated. Read more.

Algorithm allows docs to predict septic shock - Sepsis: it’s a little discussed condition that packs a deadly and quick punch. There are currently no good way to predict the condition's onset which can happen in a matter of hours. But scientists believe they have developed an algorithm to solve this issue. Read more.

Pain Management 

Another kind of pain for patients and doctors - Both aspirin and heroin were discovered in the 1800s. Ironically, Bayer developed and marketed heroin as a “less addictive” version of morphine and other opium products. That didn’t work out so well, and by the 1920s, it was banned from use and sale. Read more.

Research

Have we taken the microbiome too far? -The details of science, how to interpret empirical data, are more of a debate than lay people may know and scientists may care to admit, and it is not as cut and dry as the media sometimes present it. This often leads to corruption of trendy topics. One example of this is the microbiome. Read more. 

Freeing Up Money For Science, Without Funding Waste - Congress has decided to boost funding for the National Institutes of Health by $9.3 billion over five years, and that is welcome news to researchers. But there are two ways we could have prevented life sciences researchers from feeling like they were being disrespected by the current White House administration. Read more.

Smoking

Wages Of Sin (Taxes) - A Boost For Smoking Cessation Tools - ACSH has led the nation in efforts to stop people from smoking so it's no surprise we have embraced patches, gums, e-cigarettes and products like "snus" made in Sweden as ways to ease people off of cigarettes, because they replace nicotine. Smoking kills but it is the nicotine that makes people want to smoke. Read more.

British Agency: E-Cigs 95 Percent Less Harmful Than Tobacco - Britain's Department of Health announced electronic cigarettes are around 95 percent less harmful than tobacco and should be promoted smoking cessation device, according to the results of a new study released Wednesday. Read more.

Social Commentary

Green Fatigue – Are People Finally Tired Of Being Scared? - The public has increasingly become jaded about the efforts of anti-science activists to raise money by promoting fear and doubt. Since Rachel Carson first shot to popularity with a book claiming that DDT was ruining the environment no effort has been spared to get a lot of things banned. Read more.

Tell your boss those extra hours may kill you - A large meta-analysis by researchers working in the United Kingdom found what we already knew: stress might be bad for your health. The study, published in The Lancet was a meta-analysis that examined the effects of working long hours on both risk of coronary heart disease and risk for stroke. Read more.

Vaccines

Childhood vaccines: Separating myth from fact - Standing among the greatest achievements in public health, vaccines have had a greater impact on reducing death and disability from infectious diseases than almost any other public health intervention. And yet, lingering fear keeps some parents from vaccinating their children, putting them and others in danger. Read more.

New study confirms the obvious: chickenpox vaccine works- Well this isn’t surprising at all. Since the chickenpox vaccine became available in the US in 1995, there has been a significant reduction in chickenpox cases, according to a new study published in the Journal of the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society. Read more.

Women’s medicine

The little pink pill is approved: Here's The Real Story - A drug called “Female Viagra” had been languishing the clinic since before 2010. Flibanserin is supposed to be a treatment for women who suffer from sexual dysfunction, (mostly lower libidos) as they age. After twice being unanimously rejected by the FDA, they turned around an approved it. Why? Read more.

Female Viagra Stinks a Little More Every Day - The comedian Jerry Seinfeld has a very funny bit about what happens when couples who break up, try to get back together again. Paraphrasing: “Do you ever take milk out of the refrigerator, sniff it and it’s starting to smell sour? So you put it back and think ‘Hmm. Maybe this will smell better tomorrow?’ Read more.

New DCIS Cancer Data Should Ease Womens’ Worry - Ductal Carcinoma In Situ (DCIS) is a cancer we’ve addressed frequently, particularly in recent weeks while tracking the medical developments of Food Network star Sandra Lee. She chose double mastectomy, which we questioned. Now we’re seeing that there’s more data supporting our original position. Read more.

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