Just Over 3% of Americans May Suffer from Food Allergies
A review of nearly three million medical records identified more than 97,000 patients who suffered from one or more food allergies or food intolerance. The researchers found that the most common allergy was to shellfish, such as shrimp and lobster. Other common food allergies included fruits, vegetables, dairy, and peanuts. These food allergies can lead to potentially life-threatening reactions such as hives, anaphylaxis, shortness of breath, wheezing, itching, swelling, or other allergic-like reactions called intolerances. Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, May 2017
Teen Drivers Face Triple the Risk of a Fatal Crash
An analysis of national data found that compared with drivers aged 30-59 years old in the United States, teen drivers are 4.5 times more likely to be involved in a crash and over three times as likely to be in a fatal collision. The investigators say that the three main factors associated with fatal teen crashes are distraction, not buckling up, and speeding. AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, June 2017
Healthy Fats Help Beat High Cholesterol
Saturated fats are commonly found in meat, full-fat dairy products, and tropical oils such as coconut and palm oil. These oils are known to increase bad cholesterol that can cause artery-clogging plaque and cardiovascular disease. Experts from the American Heart Association note that clinical trials have shown that reducing the use of saturated fat in favor of poly-unsaturated vegetable oil can reduce heart disease risk by about 30%, a result similar to statin drug use. Other studies have also found that a lower intake of saturated fat combined with a higher intake of poly-unsaturated and mono- unsaturated fat is linked to lower rates of heart disease. Lead advisory author Dr. Frank Sacks adds, “We want to set the record straight on why well-conducted scientific research overwhelmingly supports limiting saturated fat in the diet to prevent diseases of the heart and blood vessels.” Circulation, June 2017
Do People with Chronic Low Back Pain Sit Differently?
A recent study investigated the sitting characteristics of 46 office workers while they typed at a computer workstation for an hour. The researchers measured average pressure, peak pressure ratio, frequency of postural shift, and perceived discomfort and found that office workers with chronic low back pain sat significantly more asymmetrically than those without low back pain. Additionally, all the workers appeared to assume slumped sitting postures after about 20 minutes of sitting. However, the healthy workers more frequently corrected their posture during the prolonged computer sessions than those with chronic low back pain. Safety and Health at Work, June 2017
Preparing for a Road Trip
Will you be heading out on a long road trip this summer? To be prepared, the United States Department of Transportation suggests the following: take your car in for a checkup to make sure its tires and battery are in good shape and that all fluids are at proper levels and change if needed; pack an emergency kit that includes a cell phone and a charger and a well-stocked first aid kit; and check for any recalls on your vehicle. Department of Transportation, June 2017
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