Health & Spirit

Again: Vaccines Don't Cause Autism

Health / Scott LaFee /

Another major study, this one involving more than 650,000 Danish children, has found no link between autism and the vaccine for measles, mumps and rubella. Multiple past studies have also proven no association, and public health experts consider the matter settled science.

The latest study followed children for more than a decade, beginning ...Read more

Being a Great Caregiver

Health / Scott LaFee /

Caring for a spouse with a serious chronic illness often places incredible strain upon a relationship, with divorce rates up to 75%. Experts have lots of advice on how to be a great caregiver for the long term. Here are seven suggestions. (Caution: There are no shortcuts.)

1. Be a good listener. No one understands what's happening better than...Read more

Alone Time

Health / Scott LaFee /

If you're reading this, you're not alone, but you may be lonely. A national poll asked adults 50 to 80 years old about their "health, health behaviors and experiences and feelings related to companionship and social isolation."

One in 3 said they felt a lack of companionship (26% said some of the time; 8% said often), and 27% reported feeling...Read more

Smokeless Dire

Health / Scott LaFee /

E-cigarettes are fueling a rise in the use of tobacco products by young people, says the Centers for Disease Control. A new report finds that, in 2018, 4.9 million middle and high school students reported using a tobacco product in the past month, up from 3.6 million in 2017.

E-cigarettes were actually the only type of tobacco product that ...Read more

Paste Not

Health / Scott LaFee /

The Centers for Disease Control estimates nearly 40 percent of U.S. kids ages 3 to 6 are spreading too much toothpaste on their toothbrushes. The advised amount is roughly a pea-sized blob to avoid swallowing too much fluoride.

Small, unintentional ingestions of fluoride may cause stomach upset, though toothpaste concentrations are quite low,...Read more

Sleep Well

Health / Scott LaFee /

As we age, deep sleep tends to become more of a memory. Older persons tend to sleep less and less well, the latter often due to medications or health issues such as sleep apnea. That has implications for brain health and risk of neurological conditions like Alzheimer's disease.

In a recent study using mice, researchers found that the depth of...Read more

Reach for the Die

Health / Scott LaFee /

Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death and disabilities among drivers 15 to 20 years old. A new study reports that teens who reach for objects while driving, such as food or makeup, increase their risk of crashing nearly seven times.

The National Institutes of Health study also found that teen drivers who manually dial, text or ...Read more

Hedgehog Hygiene Hitch

Health / Scott LaFee /

The CDC is warning the public to be careful about playing with pet hedgehogs. A salmonella outbreak spanning eight states has made 11 people sick, including six kids under age 12. The outbreak's source has not yet been determined.

The health agency offers some cautionary points, so to speak:

-- Always wash your hands thoroughly after ...Read more

Food for Naught

Health / Scott LaFee /

Breakfast is said to be the most important meal of the day. After all, it's when you literally break your overnight fast. And there are lots of good, healthy reasons for having a good, healthy meal in the morning.

Some studies have even suggested that eating breakfast might help promote weight loss, while skipping breakfast ...Read more

Car Giving and Taking Away

Health / Scott LaFee /

At some point, almost everybody becomes too old to drive -- safely. But deciding when is often left to caregivers, as most drivers don't see the end of the road until, well, something bad happens.

It's a fraught time. No one wants to lose the independence that driving provides. According to surveys, adult children say the "car key ...Read more

Extra Credit

Health / Scott LaFee /

Researchers at Leiden University Medical Center in the Netherlands wanted to better understand the pathology of Katayama syndrome, an illness caused by parasitic Schistosoma worms. So they, like scientists everywhere, turned to the most ubiquitous of guinea pigs: graduate students.

Two students agreed to become infected with male worm larvae ...Read more

Medicine Goes to the Dogs, Precisely

Health / Scott LaFee /

Precision or personalized medicine is the mantra these days. It's the idea that medical science can use tools like genetic sequencing to better understand your specific ailment and how best to treat it.

What's good for man is apparently good for his best friend, too. A new company in California's Silicon Valley is touting targeted therapies ...Read more

Nothing to Sneeze At

Health / Scott LaFee /

Millions of people think they have a food allergy, and millions of people actually do -- but maybe not so many as you (or they) think. Writing in the JAMA Network, researchers surveyed more than 40,000 adults about whether they thought they were allergic to particular foods and, if so, what kinds of symptoms they experienced.

They determined ...Read more


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