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The Physicians Committee



neighborhood McDonald'sOut of Sight, Out of Mind
Children who live closer to cheap burgers and fries are more likely to be obese, according to a study from the College of William & Mary. Even after adjusting for economic status, proximity to fast-food restaurants was tied to obesity and higher body mass indexes.

Rocking Reds
Dave Matthews makes fine music—and now, fine wines. Matthews owns Blenheim Vineyards, just south of Charlottesville, Va., with his family. The vineyard recently hosted an elaborate vegan dinner to celebrate its selection of vegan wines.

poison chickenPoultry Poison
Chickens, turkeys, and other poultry birds are the leading cause of food poisoning outbreaks, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Poultry consumption accounted for 17 percent of foodborne illness outbreaks reported to the government in 2007.

Emotional Intelligence
Like humans, animals have emotions that may tell them how dangerous their world is, according to a new review published online in the Royal Society’s Proceedings B: Biological Sciences. Animals regularly threatened by predators will develop a negative “mood,” researchers found, while the opposite is true of animals in a less-threatening environment.

A Statin a Day?
Researchers from the Imperial College London suggest that fast-food outlets begin handing out cholesterol-lowering drugs alongside the fatty fare. They found that a daily drug would be required to neutralize the cardiovascular risk of an almost half-pound cheeseburger and small milkshake. No word on the dosage needed to counteract a typical American supersized meal.

orangutans play out scenes to communicate with one anotherNot a Charade
A new report looking at 20 years of data on the apes of Borneo, Indonesia, finds that orangutans play out scenes to communicate with one another and to humans. This charadelike behavior was previously thought to be unique to humans.

A Patent Problem
Eli Lilly and Co. stopped final-stage clinical trials of an experimental Alzheimer’s drug after realizing patients’ symptoms worsened after taking the drug. Presumably the drug showed promise in animals and in small-scale human trials, only to fail in large human trials.

Dead Meat
Cows being cloned for breeding stock to boost meat production in the United States are being created from the cells of dead animals. Farmers are looking to clone cows whose meat they consider “exceptional,” which can only be determined from inspecting their carcasses.

Not Making the Grade
Princeton University researchers may have mishandled primates in a research lab. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture inspection report, the animals may have been receiving water at levels below the minimum amounts allowed by the Animal Welfare Act and may not have been given painkillers following surgeries.

maggots on a planeMaggots on a Plane
Passengers on a US Airways flight got a rude welcome on a recent flight from Atlanta: maggots falling from an overhead bin. The maggots originated from a package of spoiled meat that had been brought aboard in carry-on luggage. The plane had to be cleared and cleaned before takeoff.

PCRM ILLUSTRATIONS/DOUG HALL



man reading facts in newspaper


Good Medicine: Pediatricians vs. Junk Food Giants

 
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The Physicians Committee
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