Beats this week:
1) School vending machines could see a drastic change to their contents in the near future. A provision of the Children Nutrition Act passed by the U.S. Senate would allow for regulation of the food served in the school, as well as the vending machines. Crispy edamame, bananas and flavored organic water could be some of the items available in school vending machines.
2) Over ten days has passed since the Illinois Legislature adjourned without passing a budget for the state. So the question remains, what is left to be debated? Progress Illinois breaks it down for us here.
3) Researchers at Harvard released a study this week that claims exposure to pesticides may increase the occurrence of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) in children. Specifically, the researchers found that relatively low-level exposure to common pesticides –probably from residues on foods – doubles the risk of developing ADHD.
4) The Health section of the New York Times featured a story this week about a physicians group in Philadelphia that provides primary care using a patient and prevention centered model, called patient-centered medical homes. The overall theme of the article: changing the way primary care is provided is difficult and expensive but it is absolutely necessary.
5) The debate on whether cell phones cause cancer still continues this week with the release of a study funded by the United Nations, which had inconclusive results according to most experts. While the study did find a minimal link between cell phone use and a rare form of brain cancer, the researchers concluded that because cancer can take years and decades to develop – sometimes longer than cell phones have been around– it is difficult to completely ascertain all of the risks. And the debate continues…