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Egg Farm in Salmonella Outbreak Identified

FDA says there was unacceptable rodent and insect activity!

FDA inspectors found an egg farm in North Carolina that is responsible for an outbreak of salmonella illness that sickened at least 35 people in a several state area. Upon inspection, dozens of live and dead rodents were found inside the hen houses and insects hovered throughout the farm. Employees were seen touching contaminated body parts and dirty surfaces while handling food.

PositiveTip: If you use eggs, they should be cooked thoroughly--and chosen from high-quality producers. (Discard any egg cartons with the plant numbers P-1065 or P-1359D)

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Frequent Consumption of Fruit Improves Female Fertility

Frequent fast food consumption increases risk of infertility!

Women who ate fruit less than 3 times per day, when compared to those who consumed 3 or more servings, had a significantly increased risk of infertility. This retrospective study from Australia also found women who consumed no fast food had a 41% reduced risk of infertility. Interestingly, consumption of green leafy vegetables seemingly had no impact on fertility.

PositiveTip: Women of childbearing age who desire to concieve, should lay off the fast foods and eat at least 3 servings of fresh fruit daily.

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5 Lifestyle Factors Can Add 10+ Years to Life Expectancy

Make positive lifestyle choices and live longer!

The evidence continues to accumulate--a healthy lifestyle in middle-age improves the length and quality of life. Using data from two very large cohorts, researchers looked at the associations between five low-risk lifestyle factors and mortality over 30 years. A healthy diet, never smoking, moderate-to-vigorous physical activity for 30 minutes/day or more, a healthy weight, and no excessive alcohol consumption resulted in a 74% reduced mortality risk.

PositiveTip: These 5 factors can increase average life expectancy at age 50 by 14 years for women and 12 years in men!

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Too Good to be True

The Mediterranean diet does not protect against consuming junk food!

A large, geographically diverse study using a simple food frequency questionnaire found those consuming more Mediterranean foods experienced a lower risk of major adverse cardiovascular events than those reporting fewer such foods. However, contrary to many headlines, the Mediterranean dietary pattern did not protect against eating a lot of junk food!

PositiveTip: If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is--even in nutrition and health.

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Be Careful of the Romaine Lettuce You Purchase

Romaine lettuce grown in the Yuma area under investigation for causing E. coli infections.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) suspects romaine lettuce from the Yuma, AZ area may be contaminated with E. coli O157:H7. The number of infections has climbed to 98 from 232 states--with nearly 50% of the patients being hospitalized. So far there have been no deaths.

PositiveTip: Consumers should avoid eating romaine lettuce unless they confirm it is not grown in the Yuma region.

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Fresh Fruit Daily Lowers Cardiovascular Risk

Reach for the fruit bowl instead of that bag of your favorite chips.

Researchers in China followed almost a half-million people for seven years finding when they consumed more fresh fruit they had lower risk of heart attack and stroke. Cardiovascular deaths were 40% lower in those who consumed fresh fruit daily compared to those who never or rarely did. Because the Chinese typically eat little fresh fruit, this study highlights the value of adding just 1-2 servings per day.

PositiveTip: Replace calorie-rich snacks and food items with fresh fruit to help lower your risk of cardiovascular disease.

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Underage Tobacco Sales Promoted on Facebook

The tobacco industry is exploiting Facebook's stated policies.

Although Facebook bars all paid tobacco ads, Stanford University researchers have found more than 100 unpaid brand and online vendor pages which promote leading brands of tobacco products. More than half of the identified pages included "shop now" instructions, and less than half of these included an "age gate" discouraging minors from visiting. Nearly all the sites identified included images of the products being promoted.

PositiveTip: Encourage Facebook to remove these tobacco-promoting pages--it will be a win for your children, and for Facebook, too.

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Cardiovascular Disease is Not All in the Genes

The benefits of physical fitness extend to those at high genetic risk of CVD.

A study in the U.K. followed almost 500,000 adults for an average of 6 years. At baseline participant's physical fitness was determined by a variety of tests. Researchers found patients with high cardiovascular fitness had a 49% lower risk for cardiovascular disease (CVD) when compared with those who had low fitness--even when they carried a high genetic risk for CVD.

PositiveTip: Maintain a high level of physical fitness to compensate for genetic risks of CVD!

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Overweight Boys Can Lower Risk of Diabetes

Childhood overweight at age 7 raises diabetes risk if it persists into puberty.

A study of about 63,000 Danish boys measured their BMI at ages 7 and 13. By the time they reached age 30, 11% had developed type 2 diabetes. When overweight boys lost weight between ages 7 and 13 and maintained healthy weight into early adulthood, their risk was very similar to those who were never overweight

PositiveTip: It is never too early to achieve and maintain a healthy body weight!

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Artificial Sweeteners Not So Sweet

Sucralose may cause inflammation and fat formation.

Sucralose is a popular non-caloric artificial sweetener thought to be safe. In a small, early study, researchers have shown its use may predispose people to metabolic syndrome. Dr. S. Sen, a senior study author, said, "The only part that's not there is the calories--it's not adding the calories, but it's doing everything else that glucose does." A larger study is now underway to assess other types of artificial sweeteners.

PositiveTip: Choose to enjoy less intensely sweet foods by lowering your intake of sweetened and artificially-sweetened foods.