Public Health

In the many efforts to prevent people from taking up smoking, most initiatives have focused on kids.  As the consumer advocacy group the American Council on Science and Health has long phrased it, "smoking is a pediatric disease." Prevent uptake in the young, and addiction rarely occurs.

But that has led to governments with a big blind spot about young adults, according to a paper in the Canadian Journal of Public Health by Thierry Gagné, a doctoral student at Université de Montréal's School of Public Health.

It’s widely understood that a key reason why life developed on Earth is because of water.  A common definition of a habitable environment is one in which plenty of liquid water is available to sustain life.  In short, we can’t live without water.


In 2011, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations propose using animals like pigs to study the best way of evaluating protein quality in foods eaten by children.

The researchers behind a new study calculated protein scores for eight sources of protein, derived from both plants and animals. Protein scores compare the amount of digestible amino acids in a food with a "reference protein," a theoretical protein which contains fully digestible amino acids in the proportions required for human nutrition at a particular stage of life.
If you hand food to a child when they are sad, or angry, or anything else, they will begin to associate food with those feelings. As adults, this emotional eating will be a tough habit to break. In youth, it will be even more difficult because kids aren't always aware that good things can be bad for you in excess.
Health care expansion in Massachusetts, which became a model for the controversial Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) caused a surge in surgeries for thyroid cancer.

What that means depends on who is doing the framing. One side can argue that surgeons now had the state government paying for everything, so more were done, while another can argue that people were more likely to go to the doctor.

Thyroid cancer diagnoses have gone up about 5 percent per year over the last decade. Some is over-diganosis, some may be that the effects of lifestyles in previous generations are catching up to people, but few argued it was due to health care expansion. 
Activist groups have continually perpetuated claims about artificial sweeteners, without noting that they are in animal models - and a billion rats have been killed by chemicals found in every food - and that to get similar risk in humans, you would need to drink 7,000 diet sodas per day.

But animal models are not fans of the "natural" sweetener Truvia either. A study tested survival rates of house flies (Musca domestica), on erythritol--the main ingredient in Truvia--compared to natural sugar, agar, and water alone. They found that the flies both strongly preferred high-calorie natural sugar when presented with the choice and, when fed only erythritol, they died no faster than when fed only water or agar.

The headline almost jumps out at you – “BPA Substitute Could Cause Adverse Pregnancy Outcomes.”  That alarming headline appears in an industry publication, but the same story was widely reported in the popular media, which tends to cover science only when they can create scare stories.<

Politicians are arguing with each other about health care. One side is yelling that people have coverage, even if they can't afford to use it and twice as many people will lose than ever got it. Another side claims emergency room visits and pediatric care are a luxury.

What is clear is that something needs to be fixed. 

While advocates for the ACA will say that only 6 to 8 percent of US health care expenditures are primary care, critics argue that we already had the best in the world. What is clear to all is that payment models introduced under the Affordable Care Act raised expectations for patients and doctors, but any gains were modest.
The numerous nutrition guidelines promoted by the U.S. federal government are obeyed by just 2 percent of Americans. If only 2 percent of any population can obey your guidelines, they are a nutritional wishlist created by groups of experts promoting their diet fads, not evidence-based information.

However, one group is constantly criticized by everyone else - pregnant mothers - and a new study shows that no pregnant women in any demographic are able to achieve the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Which means those guidelines are irrelevant, not that expectant moms need even more criticism.