1. theatlantic:

Moderate Marijuana Use Less Damaging Than Tobacco

METHODOLOGY: Researchers led by epidemiologist Mark J. Pletcher used a large national database with more than 5,000 respondents to compare the lung function of marijuana and tobacco smokers over a 20-year period. They looked closely at their use of marijuana and tobacco, and measured for airflow and lung volume at years 0, 2, 5, 10 and 20. (Airflow is the amount of air you can blow out of your lungs in one second while lung volume refers to the total amount of air you can blow out after taking the deepest breath possible.)
RESULTS: Repeated inhalation of tobacco smoke causes loss of airflow and lung volumes. Marijuana smoke, however, had the opposite effect, increasing both airflow rates and capacity.
CONCLUSION: Unlike cigarette smoke, use of marijuana does not result in lasting respiratory harm.


    Moderate Marijuana Use Less Damaging Than Tobacco

    METHODOLOGY: Researchers led by epidemiologist Mark J. Pletcher used a large national database with more than 5,000 respondents to compare the lung function of marijuana and tobacco smokers over a 20-year period. They looked closely at their use of marijuana and tobacco, and measured for airflow and lung volume at years 0, 2, 5, 10 and 20. (Airflow is the amount of air you can blow out of your lungs in one second while lung volume refers to the total amount of air you can blow out after taking the deepest breath possible.)

    RESULTS: Repeated inhalation of tobacco smoke causes loss of airflow and lung volumes. Marijuana smoke, however, had the opposite effect, increasing both airflow rates and capacity.

    CONCLUSION: Unlike cigarette smoke, use of marijuana does not result in lasting respiratory harm.

    (via kateoplis)


     cannabis  health  tobacco 

  2. thisisyourgovernment:

    From the Ottawa Citizen:

    Keon, a lifelong Tory who sat in the federal Senate as a Progressive Conservative before he reached mandatory retirement at 75 last year, praised McGuinty for what he’s done on health, sure (“he’s really been ahead of his time”), but also on education (early and higher). He said McGuinty had “brilliantly managed” the recession and Ontario’s recovery. One sample:

    He’s committed to making Ontario’s publicly funded education system even better, and the link between education and health is enormous. Under his leadership, peace and progress have returned to Ontario’s public school system, children are getting the attention they need through smaller class sizes and more teachers, and now he’s introduced full-day kindergarten for four- and five-year-olds to give kids a wonderful start in life and set them on the road to a long, healthy, productive life.

    via Jordan


     Conservatives  Dalton McGuinty  Ontario  health  education 

  3. robot-heart-politics:

    My lastest call for why I got a denial letter (by jmrexford)

    Jennifer Rexford, who did the last video posted, talking on the phone with a BP representative about her claim. Unbelievable. Or not at all, depending on how you look at it.

    (via )


     BP  oil spill  health 

  4. lagrandefille:ryannxp:

    PLEASE WATCH THIS AND SHARE IF YOU CARE ABOUT YOUR COUNTRY. Do you know all those ads on TV telling you the Gulf Coast is safe? Do you know those BP commercials telling you they care about their employees, that they’ve cleaned up the spill? Well, here’s a video of a woman who was a one of the thousands of clean-up crew members…

    Her body is now degenerating rapidly. She’s lost feeling in her right arm, and severe neurological/nerve damage is starting to cause uncontrollable facial twitching. Her fellow clean-up crew friends are dying. This is heartbreaking and will make you sick to your stomach, but we all need to demand the media and government and BP acknowledge the true horror of this situation. This is your opportunity to use the Internet (and Tumblr) to impact the world. Look at the Middle-East, and think how much more powerful we as Internet-users are in America because of our guaranteed access to these digital tools.

    If EVERY person on Tumblr who saw this (yes, you) reblogged and posted it on facebook, it will become a huge, national news story. The mainstream media will have no choice but to make it one. PLEASE. This is not about getting reblogs or followers or hits, this is about our country, our world, and our race. This is a mother who tried to service our entire country by agreeing to clean-up OUR Gulf Coast, and she is now losing her life as a result. If you don’t give a shit about this, you don’t deserve to live in this country, nor call yourself a human.

    Please spread this around. Everyone needs to be informed. I know tumblr is on top of that ‘spreading the word’ stuff, so this shouldn’t be too difficult for you all. If a stupid .gif of a cat could reach 40k notes, then it shouldn’t be difficult for a video to help save these dying people reach a number near that, right? Do the right thing guys.

    Wow I just… heartbreaking..

    (Source: yalayall, via )


     BP  oil spill  health 

  5. From the New York Times:

    On a warm, sunny afternoon in April, Mr. Yang burst from his home in this rural village near the Vietnamese border, carrying a kitchen cleaver. He encountered three youngsters headed home from school on the dirt path outside. He hacked two primary schoolers, badly wounding both, and slit a second grader’s throat, leaving him dying on the ground. Then he moved on. By the time police officers caught up and subdued him, he had slashed two more people to death.

    The victims’ families have focused their rage on the police. Three days earlier, Mr. Yang had struck a neighbor in the head with an ax, but was not detained.

    “They are completely responsible for this,” said Wu Huanglong, the second grader’s father. “They did not protect us.”

    But Mr. Yang’s doctors see a bigger failing. Despite clear signs of schizophrenia, Mr. Yang had received medical care for just one month in the previous five years.


    Chronic shortages of both doctors and facilities ensure that what care exists is limited. China averages just one psychiatrist for every 83,000 people — one-twelfth the ratio in the United States — and most lack a university degree in any subject, much less mental health, Dr. Ma said.


     China  health 

  6. From AlterNet:

    The new campaign for high fructose corn syrup in which the Corn Refiners Association, reflecting on changing consumer sentiment around high fructose corn syrup, have decided to rebrand and rename their product, petitioning the FDA for a name change, calling high fructose corn syrup “corn sugar.”

    The ad campaign is brilliant.  Worried, they ask?  We are, too, they claim.  Only their concern doesn’t stem from the epidemic rates of obesity, diabetes and corn allergies that we are seeing, but rather their concern stems from a 20 year low in the sale of high fructose corn syrup and the impact it is having on the profitability of members of the Corn Refiners Association .


     food  health  HFCS  labelling  FDA 

  7. From the Toronto Star:

    As with most donated organs, such corneas are in woefully short supply however, and they carry with them dangers of disease transmission and rejection.

    To circumvent these problems, Griffith says she used snips of collagen-producing human DNA inserted into yeast genomes that then generated a transparent resin.

    “Then we simply put this stuff into a contact lens mold and that gives us the shape and size of a normal human cornea,” Griffith says.

    “That was used by a surgeon for transplantation, very much as they would use a normal (donated) cornea.”

    Two years later, the synthetic corneas had not only integrated with the patient’s eyes, but had shown no signs of the rejection that typically occurs with those from human donors.

    For six of the 10 patients, who each had one eye operated on, sight improved significantly, with one achieving 20-20 vision.


     health  science  eyes  cornea  transplants 

  8. wearetheearth:



    A new study for the The American Public Transportation Association finds that people who live in communities with high-quality public transportation generally live longer, healthier lives:

    People who live or work in communities with high quality public transportation tend to drive significantly less and rely more on alternative modes (walking, cycling and public transit) than they would in more automobile-oriented areas. This reduces traffic crashes and pollution emissions, increases physical fitness and mental health, and provides access to medical care and healthy food. These impacts are significant in magnitude compared with other planning objectives, but are often overlooked or undervalued in conventional transport planning.

    The good news:

    [M]any simple, affordable, and often enjoyable lifestyle habits can lead to healthier and happier lives: breath fresh air, avoid dangerous driving, maintain healthy weight, be physically active, eat fresh fruits and vegetables, maintain friendships, and avoid excessive stress.

    The bad news:

    Many people find it difficult to maintain healthy habits. As a result, the U.S. has relatively poor health outcomes compared with peer countries, and according to some projections average U.S. lifespans may actually decline in the future due to growing but avoidable health risks.


    This analysis can help transport and health professionals better coordinate their efforts to create communities where people can live long and prosper…. When all impacts are considered, improving public transit can be one of the most cost effective ways to achieve public health objectives.

    Interesting to consider, then, how transportation planning techniques like Hans Monderman’s — based on the observation that individuals’ behavior in traffic is more positively affected by other people and the built environment of the public space than it is by conventional traffic control devices and regulations — might take part in a predominantly public-transport culture.


    No doubt.


     transportation  health 

  9. From National Geographic:

    People who are paralyzed from the neck down might soon be leading themselves around by the nose—literally. A new electric wheelchair allows the severely disabled to guide their movements by sniffing into tubes.

    Sniffing depends on highly coordinated motions of the back of the roof of the mouth, aka the soft palate. This region receives signals from several nerves that are often unaffected by paralytic injuries and disorders.

    That means some patients with disabilities ranging from quadriplegia to “locked-in syndrome”—where a person is completely paralyzed, save for eyeblinks—retain the ability to sniff with precision.

    Based on this idea, scientists with the Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot, Israel, devised a new sniff controller, which uses tubes placed up the nose to measure sniff-triggered changes in nasal air pressure.

    Related: Brain-controlled wheelchair

    Earplug provides steer-by-tongue control (by detecting changes in ear pressure)

    Steering a wheelchair with tongue movements (and a magnet on the tongue)


     science  health  technology  paralysis  wheelchairs 

  10. From The Globe & Mail:

    While the number of HIV-AIDS cases in Canada have risen back to 1982 levels, the biggest shift is in who and where are most effected.


    AIDS Committee of Toronto

    Ontario AIDS Network

    Toronto People With AIDS Foundation

    Smitherman slams Ford over past AIDS comments (May 2010)

    In 2006, Ford argued against a $1.5-million AIDS prevention strategy, telling council: “It is very preventable. If you are not doing needles and you are not gay, you wouldn’t get AIDS probably, that’s the bottom line.”

    Reducing HIV spread thru safe injection sites:

    On-site heroin urged for chronic addicts - CBC (May 2010)

    Vancouver’s supervised injection site providing a safe place for changing lives (interview w/ Russ Maynard, Insite’s program coordinator) (July 21, 2010)

    Safe drug injection sites reduce HIV spread - CTV (2005)

    Vancouver Coastal Health - Insite - Supervised Injection Site

    Vancouver’s INSITE service and other Supervised injection sites: What has been learned from research? - Final report of the Expert Advisory Committee, Prepared for the Hon. Tony Clement, Minister of Health (March 31, 2008)

    Injection site for Toronto under study - Toronto Star (Aug 2009)

    Do more:

    Register today for the Toronto Scotiabank AIDS Walk for Life or sponsor a walker.


     AIDS  Toronto  Vancouver  heroin  health  public policy  health policy 

  11. From the New York Times:

    Saodat Rakhimbayeva says she wishes she had died with her newborn baby.

    The 24-year-old housewife had a cesarean section in March and gave birth to Ibrohim, a premature boy who died three days later.

    Then came a further devastating blow: She learned that the surgeon had removed part of her uterus during the operation, making her sterile. The doctor told her the hysterectomy was necessary to remove a potentially cancerous cyst, while she believes he sterilized her as part of a state campaign to reduce birthrates.

    ”He never asked for my approval, never ran any checks, just mutilated me as if I were a mute animal,” the pale and fragile Rakhimbayeva said through tears while sitting at a fly-infested cafe in this central Uzbek city. ”I should have just died with Ibrohim.”

    According to rights groups, victims and health officials, Rakhimbayeva is one of hundreds of Uzbek women who have been surgically sterilized without their knowledge or consent in a program designed to prevent overpopulation from fueling unrest.


    Several health workers, who spoke on condition of anonymity also because they feared dismissal or persecution, said the authorities are especially eager to sterilize women with HIV, tuberculosis or a drug addiction. Instruments often are not sterilized properly and can infect other women, they said.

    Inexperienced medical workers can also cause serious health complications. ”Any negligence can do a lot of damage,” said Shakhlo Tursunova, a gynecologist from Tashkent.

    Health workers involved in the campaign are threatened with salary cuts, demotion or dismissal if they do not persuade at least two women a month to be sterilized, a former high-ranking Health Ministry official told the AP on condition of anonymity.


     Uzbekistan  health  women  sterilization 

  12. dominickbrady:


    Speak with Farmers
    Chris Heagle, producer

    Joel Salatin, the farmer featured in this clip (jump to the 4:20 mark) from the 2008 documentary Food, Inc. and owner of Polyface Farms, has found a way to be profitable while staying true to his family’s ideal that nature’s design is still the best pattern for the biological world. After hearing Ellen Davis speak so eloquently about stewardship of land, I couldn’t help but think of his words and Professor Davis’ advice on getting informed about how our food is produced:

    Ms. Tippett: So apparently my senior editor, Trent, is Tweeting this conversation we’re having, and he has had a question come in from a student of yours who loves you …So it is how do city dwellers, urbanites, relate to an agrarian mindset without romanticizing it?

    Prof. Davis: I think the best way to do that is to listen to farmers and to meet farmers. As we’ve been talking about, that’s easy to do now because there probably isn’t an urban area —

    Ms. Tippett: Right. They’re in your city. Right.

    Prof. Davis: Yeah, exactly. They’re in our city. So talk to them and find out what they’re doing, what their hopes are, and also what their struggles are. And I don’t know any farmer who isn’t struggling.

    And it doesn’t matter what model of farming they’re using. If they’re using small farming, trying to get off the grid, or if they are involved in industrial farming, I don’t know any of them who are not struggling and to some degree suffering. So I think that’s the most important thing that we can do in order not to romanticize it. I’d also suggest that you can read some of what is happening in new modes of agricultural research.

    Because some people think that when I or others are talking about agrarianism, we’re sort of talking about going back a hundred years, if not 2,000 years. But it’s not an exercise in nostalgia.


     food  agriculture  health  farmers 

  13. thisisyourgovernment:

    From The Globe & Mail:

    A $2-billion campaign to protect Canadians against an influenza pandemic failed dramatically in parts of Ontario, Manitoba and Alberta, newly obtained figures show, with one of the country’s top doctors acknowledging that public health officials neglected to properly organize a mass immunization program.

    Just over a third of residents in Alberta, Manitoba and Ontario were inoculated against H1N1, with a vaccination rate as low as one in four for residents of Hamilton, Ont., according to local health authorities. Quebec, the Atlantic provinces and the three territories, meanwhile, successfully inoculated more than half of their citizens. Newfoundland vaccinated about 70 per cent of its population.


     Canada  health 

  14. A 10-year Adelaide study has busted the myth that women use abortion as birth control.



    A Flinders University study of 965 women over 30 who used Adelaide’s largest abortion clinic found 62 per cent were using contraception when they became pregnant.

    Nursing and Midwifery researcher Wendy Abigail said the vast majority of the remainder of women also had not wanted to become pregnant.

    She said they were not using contraception for dozens of reasons such as: cultural bans, thinking they could never have children, having been raped or having had what was thought to have been “permanent” birth-control surgery.

    Ms Abigail blamed primarily male politicians for perpetuating the myth that women used termination as a convenience rather than for emotional and medical reasons.

    “People have preconceived ideas which relate to education, what their friends think and what their own values are,” she said.

    “These comments are not based on research but on personal and societal views.

    “There are so many shades of grey, though right-to-life people portray it as a black-and-white issue.”

    Ms Abigail said the finding, which was published in the Australian Journal of Primary Health, added to earlier research that showed 70 per cent of women under 30 were also on contraception when they became pregnant and then sought a termination.

    She said further research was needed to find out how many of the women who were not using contraception also did not want to become pregnant.

    “There are many reasons why women don’t use contraception, for instance domestic violence situations where the man controls what contraception is used,” Ms Abigail said. “Just because women are not using contraception doesn’t mean they want to get pregnant. “That’s what we need the additional research for and hard facts.”

    She said the current research also dispelled the myth that termination was increasingly being used for convenience, with no significant changes in trends of conception used during the study period 1996-2006.

    Ms Abigail said evidence of the failure of birth control used by the women in the study could be used to reduce the number of unwanted pregnancies.

    “Contraception does have a failure rate and with the change in fertility patterns, policies and health promotion activities need to be further developed to address this, particularly for women aged over 30 years,” she said. (emphasis mine)

    (via Adelaide Now)>

    Link to article. Great news, debunking anti-abortion myths is always a good thing. ~ waif

    Fucking expensive method of contraception, if you ask me.


     abortion  health  women 

  15. From the Globe & Mail:

    Canadian researchers from C-crest Laboratories Inc., a pharmaceutical product-testing lab in Montreal, tested nearly a dozen brands of bottled water and discovered that 70 per cent had high levels of heterotrophic bacteria. The findings were presented Tuesday at a meeting of the American Society for Microbiology in San Diego.

    “This amount of bacteria is alarming, as if we are ingesting a cup of culture,” said Sonish Azam, a researcher involved in the study who works at C-crest.

    Health Canada doesn’t have established limits for heterotrophic bacteria in water. But the United States Pharmacopeia, which sets quality, purity and other standards for drugs, food ingredients and other consumer products, says heterotrophic bacteria levels in drinking water should not exceed 500 colony-forming units (CFU) per millilitre.

    The new research found that heterotrophic-bacteria levels exceeded that standard in 70 per cent of bottled-water brands tested. The highest recorded level was 80,000 CFU per millilitre.


    The researchers said they didn’t find pathogenic bacteria in the bottled water they tested. But they said some types of heterotrophic bacteria could be harmful to the young, elderly or pregnant women.


     health  water  Canada