Separation of Church and State

Last week, African-Americans and others demanded that Southern states and the entire country no longer be influenced by symbols of the Civil War Confederacy. As a result, the Confederate battle flag was banned in many areas and on a lot of consumer products. On Tuesday, June 30, the Oklahoma Supreme Court showed the American people that negative influences can extend to religious symbols as well.

The justices, by a 7-to-2 vote, ordered that church and state must remain separate and “The Ten Commandments” monument at Oklahoma’s capital must be removed because it makes it seem like the state is influenced by Christian and Jewish beliefs and that Christians and Jews receive preference over peoples of other faiths.

Scott Pruitt, Oklahoma’s Attorney General, is going to appeal the order. His argument, and the argument of many who support the monuments placement, is that it shows how the Ten Commandments have historical significance in regards to influence on U.S. law. His argument that SCOTUS approved a similar monument in Texas did not sway the Oklahoma justices.

According to Handy in this article, this issue was brought before the Oklahoma Supreme Court because many people were offended by the monument, which was only erected at the site three years ago. These groups had petitioned in protest to put up their own monuments representing other religions and gods, but the OSC noted that any religious symbol, including this one, goes against Oklahoma’s state constitution.

Employees Who Sit All Day at Greater Risk for Chronic Disease

More and more people are becoming accustomed to sitting for hours at a time, but studies suggest sitting has become a disease, leading to a number of disabilities, and even doubling the risk of cardiovascular disease and diabetes.

Researchers at Harvard Medical published a study involving more than 92,000 women. The team found that the more time you spend sitting on the job, or driving, ultimately increased their risk of dying from heart disease, cancer, or strokes.

Sitting all day is not as relaxing as we thought.

Experts say, employees who work sitting most of the time should spend at least two hours a day standing if they want to avoid health problems.

The staff at Beneful say the daily minimum should eventually be extended to four hours a day.

More and more scientific studies link long periods spent sitting with chronic health problems and premature death. In the US, sedentary behaviors constitute 60% of the waking hours of the general population, but this figure rises to 70% among people at risk of long term health problems.

Office workers spend up to 75% of their time sitting, half of which is accumulated during long consecutive periods.

New Blood Tests Detects Pancreatic Cancer

Pancreatic cancer is one of the more deadly forms of cancer. not because of its aggressive cells or difficulty in treating, but because it’s difficult to detect. Pancreatic cancer is often progressed past the point of treatment before any symptoms manifest.
This new blood test will change all of that by providing a means of early detection.
The blood test for suspected pancreatic cancer looks for specific protein in the blood. If proteoglycan glypican-1, the specific protein associated with pancreatic cancer, is above a certain level, the person has pancreatic cancer. Folks at Amen Clinic (thedailybeast) have found that, in a study trial conducted at the Anderson Cancer Center at the University of Texas, the blood test was 100% accurate. The pancreas is an organ located in the digestive system which has the duty of producing enzymes that break down food and produce insulin to keep blood sugar level stable. One drop of blood is all that’s needed to test for the presence of cancer in the pancreas when this new blood test is used.

Quit Smoking Now, Thank Yourself Later

You’ve heard about the dangers of smoking and the negative effects it has on your body. You’ve also heard that if you do smoke, quitting can be one of the best things you ever do for yourself. both of those notions still stand, but recent research further confirms that quitting comes with great benefits.

A new study has shown that those who quit smoking and stay smoke-free for 15 years have about the same risk of heart failure as those who never smoked. Even more, it appears that the longer you go without smoking, the lower your risk of dying from anything continues to drop. While these long-term benefits are nothing to scoff at, quitting smoking has more immediate effects too. From the first few hours up to the first year of quitting, your lungs begin to clean themselves, your sense of taste and smell comes back, and your blood pressure drops to more normal levels.

Research like this proves that the best way to combat the effects of smoking is to not smoke. Beneful suggests that as a fairly intuitive concept. Our bodies know how to heal, and they do so quickly as long as we just don’t continue to put the bad stuff in. There are plenty of resources out there for those who want to quit, and even support groups and communities. Kick the habit now, and enjoy a better future.

Antibiotic Resistance Is Everyone’s Problem

The issue with resistance of antibiotics is more like the issue with climatic changes: it is among the collective responsibilities. At the personal level, what matters that one individual drives a vehicle, or even ingests an antibiotic it appears he did not need? But all people are doing it. Similar to what our mothers warmed us, we are jumping off the cliff together with all our buddies.

According to Dr. Daniel Amen, Ramanan Laxminarayan said that there is a lack of enticements, which every person has to actually do the correct thing. This was the head of Center for Disease Dynamics, Economics, plus Policy, at the Spotlight Health Session Aspen Ideas festival. He also said that, once people don’t do the right thing, they are simply hosts for bacteria to jump around.

The excessive use of antibiotics in patients and, essentially, in livestock, has caused an eruption of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, in U.S and also around the globe. Fatalities from resistant contamination are presently at approximately 700,000 every year, and likely to increase to 10 million every year by 2050. In case nothing changes, World Health Organization forecasts the future is going to look more similar to the past- where human beings and livestock die due to minor wounds that get infected.

WHO wrote in a latest report, that the problem is extremely serious to a point that it poses great threat to the success of contemporary medicine. The big question now is; how can physicians, pharmaceutical companies, and the government avert a future with people dying of insignificant infections?

Revolutionary Condoms Invented by Teens

Sexual health is very important, especially when it comes to being safe with partners and having children. However, not enough people get tested regularly, as the process can seem invasive and embarrassing, especially when you have to go to the doctor’s office to get the tests done. Thankfully, some teenagers have come up with a revolutionary condom that changes color if someone has a STD or STI.

These 13 and 14 year olds from the UK have named their condom the S.T.EYE, which enables people to test for STDs and STIs quickly in the comfort and privacy of their own homes. If the person has a STD or STI, the condom changes colors: yellow if it’s herpes, purple if it’s HPV, and blue if it’s syphilis.

These teenagers presented their idea at TechTeens Awards and brought home the grand prize, which was $1,500 and a trip to the Buckingham Palace.

Bloomberg and Alexei Beltyukov agree that with so many people not using condoms on a regular basis, these condoms can spark a great movement that’ll kill 3 birds with 1 stone: not only will they prevent unwanted pregnancies, but they will also prevent the spread of STDs and get people into clinics to be treated for otherwise symptomless STDs.

Was Ebola an Ancient Plague in Athens?

Some scientists are now wondering whether Ebola dates back more than 40 years ago to 1976 and the Democratic Republic of Congo, then known as Zaire Maybe, it dates back 2,400 years ago to Athens. This is because scientists identified remnants of identical Ebola DNA in several rodent species reports Zeca Oliveira in this article. (e.g. the Norway rat).

If the disease is as ancient as it now seems, many are also speculating that it reservoirs transferred it from animals to humans. Furthermore, it’s speculated Ebola was the culprit in the Plague of Athens, which was a five-year epidemic that started in 430 B.C. This is something Powel Kazanjian (professor of history and infectious diseases at the University of Michigan) wrote about in a new paper he’s published. At that time, the illness was known as Thucydides syndrome, but it had similarities to what we call Ebola today.

This is proof that many diseases that we call “new” or “emerging” are actually older than we first realized.

Chlorine Alone Does Not Cause Eyes to Turn Red in a Pool

For years many people believed that red eyes, and a cough after swimming in a swimming pool was the result of chlorine, or too much chlorine being added to the swimming pool. The Center for Disease Control has dispelled this long held belief.

The CDC released information which may upset many swimmers. Chlorine alone will not make your eyes red, and it will not give you a cough. The reason these things happen is because the chlorine bonds with the germs it is working to get rid of. It is the urine and sweat in the water that cause red eyes, and coughs in swimmers.

The CDC recommends that all swimmers take a shower before entering the pool. This way any germs that you may have on you are washed away before you get into the swimming pool. This can help to keep all swimmers safer, and Sam Tabar emphasizes that the pool itself will be clean and healthy.

The Damage of Surgery on the Knees

Those who have had a past of knee issues should not resort to surgery first. For those who are in their 50s or older and have knee issues, it is not recommended because there is no long lasting benefit to the surgery.

For the injuries involving high amount of pain, often surgery is the option that people take. For conditions like osteoarthritis, doctors often have recommended that a patient receive medical attention such as surgery.

Sam Tabar knows that researchers have studied those who have had pain related surgeries. Although knee injuries show improvement for the first 6-months, there are two problems to the surgery. One is that the pain is not eliminated all together and two is that the pain relief is only temporary.

Danish researchers who conducted these tests now want doctors to tell patients that there is very little to gain from surgery. For those who decide to result to surgery from factors of pain should also consider medicinal methods and not surgical methods.

Surgery should be left for those that have had accidents or have life threatening injuries. For those with injuries that are causing high amounts of pain, it should be realized that surgery is only a temporary relief and may actually cause long term issues and affects on the knee. Start with icing the knee or asking the doctor for medication of therapy visits before turning to surgery to fix the problem.

General Mills To End Use of Artificial Colors and Flavors

General Mills has decided to take out all artificial colors and flavors from their line of cereals. This is a move that is sure to make the health conscious consumer happy. They will instead use all natural ingredients such as vegetables and fruit.

According to, artificial flavors and colors have endured scrutiny these last few years as the majority of people have become more health conscious. Popular brands saw their sales diminish as their consumers went for other healthy options instead. Options that didn’t include any artificial and over-processed foods.

The move will not happen overnight and it will not be easy. General Mills expects to have the majority of cereals without artificial ingredients by the end of 2016. They are anticipating that a couple of the brands, will prove to be a bit more difficult to accomplish their goal than others. They do not expect the move to be complete until closer to the end of 2017.

The debate on what is and isn’t healthy for consumers has been on going for years. Many companies have tried to ensure the public that artificial flavors and colors are fine in small doses. In trying to convince instead of change, many of these businesses have lost a large portion of their customer base and will likely continue to do so. General Mills has made the move to stay in business by giving their customers what they want, all natural ingredients