Health

The Two-Way
4:38 pm
Thu May 14, 2015

Calif. Moves Closer To Banning Vaccine 'Personal Belief' Exemptions

A photo from April shows protesters in Sacramento, Calif., rallying against a bill that would require all school-age children to be vaccinated. The state Senate just passed the measure.
Rich Pedroncelli AP

Originally published on Thu May 14, 2015 4:49 pm

California's state Senate has passed a bill to eliminate "personal belief exemptions" that currently allow parents to opt out of having their school-age children vaccinated.

SB 277, sponsored by Democratic Sens. Richard Pan of Sacramento and Ben Allen of Santa Monica, passed 25 to 10 and now advances to the Assembly.

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Shots - Health News
2:24 pm
Thu May 14, 2015

Nurse Visits Help First-Time Moms, Cut Government Costs In Long Run

Symphonie Dawson and her son, Andrew. A visiting nurse program helped Dawson finish school while she was pregnant.
Courtesy of Symphonie Dawson

While studying to become a paralegal and working as a temp, Symphonie Dawson kept feeling sick. She found out it was because she was pregnant.

Living with her mom and two siblings near Dallas, Dawson, then 23, worried about what to expect during pregnancy and what giving birth would be like. She also didn't know how she would juggle having a baby with being in school.

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The Salt
1:24 pm
Thu May 14, 2015

Why A Philadelphia Grocery Chain Is Thriving In Food Deserts

Inside a Brown's Super Store. Brown's operates seven profitable supermarkets in low-income neighborhoods in Philadelphia.
Courtesy of Brown's Super Stores, Inc.

Originally published on Thu May 14, 2015 3:57 pm

When Jeff Brown opened his first grocery store in a low-income neighborhood in Philadelphia back in 2004, it seemed like a long shot.

Most people thought he was crazy to even attempt to make money in a food desert like Southwest Philly, he says. Other grocers had tried and quickly gone out of business.

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Shots - Health News
11:50 am
Thu May 14, 2015

A Fungus Causes More Unexpected Illnesses In Montana

Cough? Check. Fever? Check. But bet you didn't think that this common fungus, Histoplasma capsulatum, could be making you sick.
Science Source

If you go to the doctor with a cough and fever, odds are you're not thinking you could have an unusual fungal infection — and neither is the doctor.

That's why the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention wants to get the word out that they found more people sick with histoplasmosis in Montana and Idaho.

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NPR Ed
7:27 am
Thu May 14, 2015

Vindication For Fidgeters: Movement May Help Students With ADHD Concentrate

Allowing kids with ADHD to move around in class may help them collect their thoughts.
LA Johnson/NPR

Originally published on Thu May 14, 2015 8:46 am

Are you a pen-clicker? A hair-twirler? A knee-bouncer? Did you ever get in trouble for fidgeting in class? Don't hang your head in shame. All that movement may be helping you think.

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Shots - Health News
2:35 am
Thu May 14, 2015

A Database Of All Things Brainy

The Allen Cell Types Database catalogs all sorts of details about each type of brain cell, including its shape and electrical activity. These cells, taken from the visual area of a mouse brain, are colored according to the patterns of electrical activity they produce.
Courtesy of Allen Institute for Brain Science

Originally published on Thu May 14, 2015 11:15 am

When the brain needs to remember a phone number or learn a new dance step, it creates a circuit by connecting different types of neurons.

Scientists still don't know how many types of neurons there are or exactly what each type does.

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Shots - Health News
2:32 am
Thu May 14, 2015

Long-Term Depression May Boost Stroke Risk Long After Mood Improves

Originally published on Thu May 14, 2015 8:51 am

Medical researchers have known for several years that there is some sort of link between long-term depression and an increased risk of stroke. But now scientists are finding that even after such depression eases, the risk of stroke can remain high.

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Shots - Health News
4:58 pm
Wed May 13, 2015

Smokers More Likely To Quit If Their Own Cash Is On The Line

Originally published on Thu May 14, 2015 2:25 pm

A new study finds that employer-based programs to help people stop smoking would work better if they tapped into highly motivating feelings — such as the fear of losing money.

This conclusion flows from a study involving the employees of CVS/Caremark. Some workers got postcards asking them if they wanted a cash reward to quit smoking. One card ended up in the hands of Camelia Escarcega in Rialto, Calif., whose sister works for CVS.

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Shots - Health News
2:19 pm
Wed May 13, 2015

Why Would A Fish Make Its Own Sunscreen?

The lowly zebra fish can make its own sunscreen.
Marrabbio2 Wikimedia Commons

Originally published on Thu May 14, 2015 2:25 pm

Creatures that venture out into the daylight can be damaged by the sun's ultraviolet rays. Humans produce melanin, a dark pigment, to help protect our skin. And now many of us slather on sunscreen, too.

Bacteria, algae and fungi make their own chemicals that sop up UV rays. And there's one called gadusol that's been found in fish and their eggs.

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The Salt
1:29 pm
Wed May 13, 2015

How To Feed A Numbat: Zoo Cookery Aids Endangered Species

Peter Mawson, director of animal health and research at the Perth Zoo in Australia, shows off a Western Swamp Tortoise in the zoo's breeding area (where visitors are not allowed). Like numbats, these tortoises are critically endangered and Mawson and his team are working to breed them in captivity for release back into the wild.
Sujata Gupta for NPR

Originally published on Mon May 18, 2015 1:01 pm

To make the New Numbat Artificial Diet, mix together powdered cat chow, hen's eggs and water. Cook on low heat for 10 minutes and cool. Add calcium carbonate, a vitamin-mineral supplement, cellulose powder, fish oil, Vitamin B12 and crushed termite mound.

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