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Biden to Sign Bill That Helps Veterans Exposed to Toxic Burn Pits

President Biden was poised on Wednesday to sign a bill that expands health care benefits for U.S. veterans exposed to toxic burn pits.

Known as the PACT Act, the legislation is the biggest expansion of veterans' health care and benefits in more than 30 years, the White House said in a

  • By Steven Reinberg HealthDay Reporter
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  • August 10, 2022
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  • Climate Change Making 218 Infectious Diseases Even Worse

    Flooding, heat waves and drought have made 58% of infectious diseases worse, a new analysis claims.

    For the review of previous studies, published Aug. 8 in the journal Nature Climate Change, researchers found that 218 of the known 375 infectious diseases have been made worse by climate change, including

    Global Warming Will Mean More Unfit, Unhealthy Kids Worldwide: Study

    Children are not as physically fit as their parents were when they were kids, and this will likely harm them as the Earth warms, new research claims.

    The findings are based on a comprehensive review of more than 150 studies that looked at how children maintain physical activity, exercise and cope with heat, as well as how thi...

    PFAS 'Forever Chemicals' Cost the U.S. Billions

    They are called "forever chemicals" because they linger in the human body and can contribute to the risk of everything from cancer to childhood obesity.

    Now, new research on per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) finds they also exact a huge financial toll, costing the U.S. health system billions every year.

    ...

    It's Hurricane Season, So Get Your Storm Medical Kit Together

    Living in a region where tropical storms, hurricanes or other weather emergencies are likely means being ready for a quick evacuation.

    "Part of preparedness is having a plan," said Dr. James McDeavitt, executive vice president and dean of clinical affairs at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. "You don't want to make that plan as the hurricane is barreling down the coast. You need to <...

    Neighborhood Drop in Violent Crime May Also Boost Heart Health

    Every town wants low crime rates. But a new finding may offer a whole new reason to advocate for the change: Falling crime rates may lower heart disease fatalities.

    An analysis of 2000-2014 data from Chicago illustrated a significant decline in violent crime. Across the city, the drop in total crime was 16%, while simultaneously there was a 13% decrease in

  • By Ellie Quinlan Houghtaling HealthDay Reporter
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  • July 18, 2022
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  • Do You Live in America's Fittest City? Experts Rank Best to Worst

    Want to get fit and stay fit? Arlington, Va., may be the city for you: For the fifth year in a row, it has been named the fittest city in America.

    Meanwhile, the title of the least fit city goes to Oklahoma City, according to the annual fitnes...

    High Heat, Heavy Smog a Deadly Combo: Study

    Heat coupled with smog can be a particularly lethal mix, especially for older adults, a new study finds.

    Unfortunately, both hot temperatures and air pollution are going to increase as the planet warms, and so will deaths, researchers report.

    "We are experiencing more and more frequent wildfires, which cause pollution, and

    Gas Used in Homes Has Links to Cancer; Leaks Often Undetected

    The natural gas being piped into your home contains a wide array of toxic chemicals, including nearly two dozen so harmful they're classified as hazardous air pollutants, a new study says.

    Natural gas samples taken from 69 Boston-area cooking stoves were found to contain at least 21 different hazardous air pollutants, including benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, xylene and hexane, according ...

    Is Politics Creating a 'Mortality Gap' for Americans?

    The sharp political divide in the United States may also be creating a widening gap in death rates between those on opposing sides, new research suggests.

    For the study, researchers at Brigham and Women's Hospital (BWH) in Boston analyzed death rates and federal and state election data for all U.S. counties from 2001 to 2019.

    During that time, deaths rates in Democratic counties fel...

    Making U.S. Cities Greener Could Have Saved Thousands of Lives

    Creating more parks and other green spaces could have prevented tens of thousands of deaths in dozens of large U.S. cities over the past two decades, a new study says.

    "We've known that living in greener areas can have a

    Spring's Double Trouble: Asthma Plus Seasonal Allergies

    If you have both asthma and seasonal allergies, there are ways to reduce the impacts of that double whammy, an expert says.

    People with asthma, a chronic lung condition, should try to control or prevent allergic outbreaks, said Dr. Miranda Curtiss, an assistant professor at the University of Alabama at Birmingham School...

    It's 'Kids to Parks Day': Get Out, Get Active

    It's a good idea to get children outside every day, but especially on Kids to Parks Day, a national day of outdoor play on May 21.

    "Even as the COVID-19 pandemic continues, outdoor time and nature exploration are safe for most kids," pediatrician Dr. Danette Glassy said in an ...

    Global Warming Could Mean Less Sleep for Billions

    Anyone who's tried to sleep on a hot summer night knows how hard it is to nod off when the mercury is rising.

    So it's no surprise that global warming is likely to cost people more and more shut-eye as temperatures around the world rise.

    By the end of this century, individuals could be subjected to at least two weeks of short sleep each year due to high temperatures driven by global ...

    Workers in U.S. Southwest in Peril as Summer Temperatures Rise

    It's getting hotter and hotter outside due to global warming and, as a result, outdoor workers in southwestern states are increasingly vulnerable to heat-related illnesses.

    Making matters worse, many of these workers may not realize their health is in jeopardy.

    This is the main finding of a new study that looked at how extreme heat affects outdoor workers' health in Las Vegas, Los A...

    Pollution Killed 9 Million People Worldwide in 2019

    Pollution from varied sources caused 9 million deaths worldwide in 2019, accounting for 1 in 6 of all deaths, a new study says.

    Of those pollution-related deaths, three-quarters -- close to 7 million -- were caused by outdoor or indoor air pollution. Toxic chemical pollution (including lead) caused 1.8...

    Cutting Pollution From Power Plants, Transport Could Save 50,000 U.S. Lives Each Year

    More than 50,000 premature deaths would be prevented in the United States each year if fine particle air pollution from the burning of fossil fuels were eliminated, researchers say.

    Curbing this source of pollution would also save more than $600 billion a year in health care costs due to related illness and death, their

  • By Robert Preidt HealthDay Reporter
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  • May 17, 2022
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  • Wildfire Survivors Could Face Higher Cancer Risk

    Wildfires, like the one currently raging in New Mexico, are known to cause upticks in breathing issues and heart attacks in their immediate wake for folks who live nearby.

    Now, new Canadian research shows that these fires may also increase risk for lung and brain cancer o...

    Are 'Climate-Friendly' Options on Restaurant Menus Coming Soon?

    Is there a way to make eating out more environmentally friendly? A team of German researchers thinks the answer is a bright green yes.

    They'd like restaurants to offer menus that clearly label the environmental impact -- or "

    Pregnant American Women Are Facing Higher Exposures to Chemicals

    Exposure to potentially harmful chemicals is on the rise among pregnant women in the United States, a new study warns.

    "This is the first time we've been able to measure the amounts of chemicals in such a large and diverse group of pregnant women - not just identify chemicals," ...

    What Long Periods in Space Do to Astronauts' Brains

    Scientists have unearthed new details about how astronauts' brains are affected by extended trips in space.

    "These findings have important implications as we continue space exploration," said study co-author Dr. Juan Piantino. He is an assistant professor of pediatrics (neurology) at Oregon Health & Science University School of Medicine, in Portland. "It also forces you to think about som...

    City Rats May Not Pose Big Pandemic Threat

    Despite what you may have heard, rats and other city wildlife aren't likely to trigger future pandemics in people, according to a new study.

    The COVID-19 pandemic has scientists trying to determine where future outbreaks are most likely to start. It's long been suspected that critters in cities might act as reservoirs for viruses that could cause outbreaks in humans.

    An internationa...

    Your Take-Out Coffee Cup May Shed Trillions of Plastic 'Nanoparticles'

    Maybe you ask the barista for cream with your coffee, and possibly sugar as well.

    But new research shows that paper cup of joe you grab off the coffeehouse counter contains another ingredient, and it's one you might not care for - trillions of tiny plastic particles that leach into your hot java from...

    Dangerous Germs Floating on Microplastics in Ocean Wind Up in Food, Water

    Land parasites that pose a risk to human and wildlife health can hitch rides on the millions of pounds of microplastics that float between oceans, a new study shows.

    "It's easy for people to dismiss plastic problems as something that doesn't matter for them, like, 'I'm not a turtle in the ocean; I won't c...

    Climate Change Will Make Pandemics Like COVID More Likely: Report

    Planet Earth is growing hotter, forcing different animal species to migrate to new areas and interact with other unfamiliar creatures at an increasing rate.

    That phenomenon could have dire consequences to human health, a new study says, raising the odds for new viral illnesses such

  • Dennis Thompson HealthDay Reporter
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  • April 28, 2022
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  • COVID Deaths Cluster in Poorly Vaccinated Communities

    COVID-19 death rates are significantly higher in U.S. counties that remain largely unvaccinated than in those where more people have gotten their shots, according to a new study.

    The findings add to evidence that vaccination ...

    Worsening Allergy Seasons: Is Climate Change to Blame?

    Scientists have long known that as the Earth warms due to climate change, plants produce more pollen, making allergy season longer and more pronounced.

    Now, a new survey finds that hay fever sufferers are increasingly taking notice.

    In a poll of more than 2,000 U.S. adults conducted by the Harris Poll in partnership with HealthDay, only 1 in 3 reported receiving an official...

    Sharp Spike Seen in Air Pollution Levels in Recent Years

    After 23 years of decreases in overall air pollution levels, a new report shows that the United States recorded the highest ever number of "very unhealthy" and "hazardous" air quality days between 2018 and 2020.

    In its State of the Air 2022 report, the American Lung Association said more than 137 million Americans reside in counties with unhealthy air, and the number of people who faced i...

    Western Wildfires Fueling Air Pollution During Summer Months

    Larger and more intense wildfires in the U.S. Pacific Northwest are causing a spike in air pollution across North America that endangers millions of people, a new study warns.

    Wildfire smoke has been linked to significant

  • By Robert Preidt HealthDay Reporter
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  • April 21, 2022
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  • Microplastics Found in Mussels That Humans Eat

    When you eat mussels or other seafood, you might also be getting a serving of microplastics, a new study suggests.

    Demonstrating that plastic trash is everywhere, researchers discovered microplastics from plastic pollution in edible blue mussels from 10 of southern Australia's most popular and more remote...

    Lead Exposure Harms Kids in Many Ways

    New studies add to the extensive body of research showing the many risks that lead poses to youngsters.

    The association between lead exposure and children's IQ is well-documented, but these Univers...

    Humans Bear Blame for Red Tides

    Red tide is a scourge of Southwest Florida, often littering beaches with dead fish and marine life and disrupting plans for boating and bathing.

    But Mother Nature isn't entirely to blame for this blight.

    A new study confirms what some have long suspected - that human activity helps sustain and intensify naturally occurring

    Two-Thirds of U.S. Water Systems Contain Uranium

    Two-thirds of U.S. community water systems have detectable levels of uranium, and the highest levels are in Hispanic communities, according to a new study.

    "Previous studies have found associations between chronic uranium exposure and increased risk of hypertension, cardiovascular disease, kidney damage and lung cancer at high levels of exposure," said researcher Anne Nigra, assistan...

    EPA Proposes to Ban Last Form of Asbestos Used in U.S.

    A proposed rule to ban ongoing uses of the only known form of asbestos imported into the United States has been introduced by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    The ban would apply to chrysotile asbestos, which is known to cause cancer and is found in products like asbestos diaphragms, sheet gaske...

    99% of Planet's Population Breathes Dirty Air: WHO

    Almost no one in the world is breathing good air, according to a new World Health Organization report, which issued a call for reducing the use of fossil fuels.

    Air quality is the worst in WHO's Eastern Mediterranean and Southeast Asia regions, but 99% of the global population breathes air that exceeds ai...

    Want a Healthier Neighborhood? Plant a Tree

    It turns out that trees might be good medicine.

    How so? New research shows that having lots of trees in your neighborhood could improve your health and lower your medical costs.

    "It's time to stop looking at trees simply as an amenity and start recognizing the essential services they provide," said study author Ming Kuo, director of the Landscape and Human Health Lab the University ...

    Good Sense of Direction? Where You Grew Up Is Key

    Your ability to find your way around may be influenced by your childhood surroundings.

    Researchers in the United Kingdom and France have discovered that people raised in the country or suburbs are better navigators than those who grew up in cities, particularly those with grid-pattern streets.

    The study included nearly 400,000 people in 38 countries who played a mobile game called <...

    No Threat From Common Chemicals in Most Face Masks: Study

    Reassuring new research finds that most face masks used by people during the pandemic don't have high levels of chemicals called per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS).

    The chemicals, which have been linked to numerous health harms, are used in many products to re...

    Bong Use at Home Quickly Fills Air With Toxins

    Smoking pot through a bong doesn't protect the nonsmokers in the room from the dangers of secondhand smoke, a new study warns.

    Bongs have been touted as a safe way to protect nonsmokers from secondhand marijuana smoke. But it can expose them to extremely high concentrations of fine particulate matter - five to 1...

    Does Your City Park Make the '25 Happiest' List?

    Taking a stroll through a city park can give your mood a significant boost, but parks in some cities provide a bigger benefit than those in others, researchers say.

    In a new study, investigators measured the

    More Balmy Summer Nights, Higher Heart Death Rate in Men

    Warm summer nights may leave you tossing and turning in bed, but that could be the least of your worries. Just a slight rise in summer nighttime temperatures increases the risk of heart-related death for men in their 60s, a new study shows.

    "Considering the growing likelihood of

  • By Robert Preidt HealthDay Reporter
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  • March 29, 2022
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  • Deer Can Shed Coronavirus for 5 Days After Infection

    White-tailed deer can shed and transmit the COVID-19 virus for up to five days after they're infected, according to a study that also identified where the virus develops and replicates in deer.

    Five days is "a relatively short window of time in which the infected animals are shedding and are able to transmit the virus," said co-author Dr. Diego Diel, director of the Cornell University Vir...

    As Climate Change Worsens Allergy Season, Tips on How to Cope

    Climate change is prompting longer pollen seasons and higher pollen counts, which spells trouble for people with seasonal allergies, allergists warn.

    "Allergy seasons have been changing in North America and across the globe, and we see greater changes the further you get from the equator," explained Dr. Kara Wada, an allergis...

    U.S. Wildfires: Much Bigger, More Frequent Now

    U.S. wildfires have become larger, more frequent and more widespread in the past two decades, and the situation will become even worse in the future, a new study warns.

    "Projected changes in climate, fuel and ignitions suggest that we'll see more and larger fires in the future," said l...

    New Tick-Borne Virus Is Spreading Across U.S.

    The potentially deadly tick-borne Heartland virus is spreading across the United States and has now been found in Georgia, Emory University researchers report.

    First identified in Missouri in 2009, the virus is found in the Southeast and Midwest and is spread by the lone star tick. The genetic fingerprint of the virus found in Georgia differs from that found in other stat...

    Biden Administration Says California Can Set Tough Auto Emission Standards Again

    California will once again be able to set its own car emission standards under a waiver approved Wednesday by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

    The move reverses a Trump administration decision to revoke the state's authority to determine its own limits on auto emissions.

    Under the EPA ...

    EPA Proposes Tougher Emission Standards for Big Trucks

    Tighter restrictions on emissions from big trucks were proposed Monday by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    "Seventy-two million people are estimated to live near truck freight routes in America, and they are more likely to be people of color and those with lower incomes. These overburdened communities are directly exposed to pollution that causes respiratory and cardiovascu...

    Climate Change Bringing More Catastrophic Wildfires: UN Report

    Devastating wildfires around the world will only grow in number in coming decades as climate change further fuels the chances of out-of-control blazes, a landmark report from the United Nations warns.

    "The heating of the planet is turning landscapes into tinderboxes," said the

    Fracking Wastewater Loaded With Toxic Chemicals, Study Shows

    Fracking has already raised the ire of environmentalists for its effects on the planet, but new research sends up another red flag: The wastewater produced by the complicated oil and gas drilling process is loaded with toxic and cancer-causing contaminants that threaten both people and wildlife.

    In fracking, water tha...

    Eagles Are Being Poisoned by Environmental Lead

    The national bird of the United States is facing a deadly threat from within: widespread lead poisoning, largely caused by ingesting fragments of hunters' lead ammunition.

    The poisoning is slowing the population growth of both bald eagles, the nation's symbol since 1782, and golden eagles, whose numbers ...

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