Is your gas stove making you sick?
Natural gas stoves have become the latest flashpoint in America’s increasingly volatile political culture, after a top federal regulator publicly mulled over banning the appliances.
“This is a hidden hazard,” the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) commissioner, Richard Trumka Jr., said in an interview. “Any option is on the table. Products that can’t be made safe can be banned.”
Trumka quickly walked back that statement, saying that the agency wants to assess the hazards posed by indoor gas stove emissions but has no plans to ban gas stoves.
But the question now is on the front burner — to what extent do gas stoves pose a health hazard to the average American?
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About 1 in 3 Americans has an allergy
If it seems as though everyone you know struggles with some sort of allergy, new research suggests you are not mistaken.
As many as 1 in 3 adults and 1 in 4 kids suffers from a seasonal allergy, a food allergy or eczema, the latest government data shows.
Caused by a reaction to plant pollen, seasonal allergies were most common type of allergy in both kids and adults. Symptoms include sniffling, sneezing, coughing and itchy eyes.
The study wasn’t designed to see if allergies are on the rise. Still, these conditions have become more prevalent according to previous reports, said study author Benjamin Zablotsky, a health statistician at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
About 19% of children and nearly 26% of adults were diagnosed with a seasonal allergy in 2021.
Should you eat seafood during pregnancy?
Pregnant women hear a lot of “Do this” and “Don’t do that” advice about what is safe to eat.
But one recommendation that’s particularly important involves seafood: During pregnancy, women need to eat enough seafood to gain the health benefits, but not so much to raise the risk of some significant consequences. They also need to be careful about how the fish they eat is prepared.
“Fish is an important source of nutrients, and its consumption should not be avoided,” said Dr. Vaia Lida Chatzi, an associate professor of preventive medicine at the Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California (USC), who led a study published in the journal JAMA Network Open.
“But pregnant women should stick to one to three servings of fish a week as recommended, and not eat more, because of the potential contamination of fish by mercury and other persistent organic pollutants,” Chatzi advised.
Why cancer in one breast could develop in the other
Some women with cancer in one breast may have a greater risk of developing cancer in the other breast, new research suggests.
Those who carry a specific genetic change — a germline BRCA1, BRCA2 or CHEK2 mutation — have at least a twofold increased risk of cancer in both breasts, also called contralateral breast cancer, according to researchers at the Mayo Clinic Comprehensive Cancer Center in Rochester, Minn.
The study of 15,000 women also found that those with germline ATM mutations did not have a significantly elevated risk of cancer in both breasts.
For some carriers of the PALB2 gene, the risk was dependent on other factors. They had a significantly elevated risk of cancer in both breasts if they had estrogen receptor-negative disease, the investigators found.
Medicaid extends coverage to prison inmates
Some inmates in California could begin getting certain limited health services, including substance abuse treatment and mental health diagnoses, using Medicaid funds.
Typically, inmates lose Medicaid coverage while in the prison, jail or juvenile justice system.
This change will be the first time ever that Medicaid has provided some coverage for inmates, the Associated Press reported.
The U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) is allowing this only in California for now, in a program that could become a model for other states.
Care would begin 90 days before someone is scheduled to be released, offering supports that don’t now exist.
Could UV light from nail polish dryers cause cancer?
Getting a gel manicure may be less safe than many think.
Researchers say the nail polish dryers that use ultraviolet (UV) light to cure the gel polish emit possibly dangerous rays. These rays might lead to cell death and cancer-causing mutations in human cells, they noted.
Maria Zhivagui, a researcher at the University of California, San Diego, has sworn off gel manicures after seeing results in the lab.
When she was doing her PhD, she was intrigued by gel manicures, which last longer than normal polish. “I started using gel manicures periodically for several years,” Zhivagui said in a university news release.
How many daily steps do you need to lose weight?
It’s clear that staying active is key to being healthy, and fitness trackers and smartwatches have become popular tools for tracking activity.
But just how many steps does someone need to take to lose weight?
That’s not such a simple a question.
While evidence is limited on exactly how many steps a day it takes to lose weight, experts say to get about 150 to 300 minutes of moderate- to vigorous-intensity exercise weekly, said Amanda Paluch, an assistant professor in the department of kinesiology and Institute for Applied Life Sciences at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.
That’s about an average of 22 minutes per day on the low end and 45 minutes on the high end, Paluch said.
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