Trees and bushes near highways improve air quality
“Anyone who’s endured rush-hour bumper-to-bumper traffic knows how unpleasant the air can get. Between fumes, dust, and all those exhaust pipes, it’s definitely not a nature lover’s paradise. But what if those trees and bushes lining our highways weren’t just there for decoration? What if they were secretly cleaning the air you breathe? Well, a new study from Georgia State University says they just might be.”

Is It Time to Address the Fiscal Reality of the Cancer Care Model and Consider Alternatives?
“This commentary begins with the poignant words of the great American philosopher Yogi Berra, who is reported to have declared: “You can observe a lot by watching.” So, we note 2 recent items in the medical world that, if interpreted correctly, should send chills down the spines of those considering the possible—and perhaps even likely— financial future of oncology care in the United States.”

‘Winners and losers’: The world of coffee is being reordered by EU laws to stop cutting of forests
“Farmer Le Van Tam tends coffee plants at a coffee farm in Dak Lak province, Vietnam on Feb. 1, 2024. New European Union rules aimed at stopping deforestation are reordering supply chains. An expert said that there are going to be “winners and losers” since these rules require companies to provide detailed evidence showing that the coffee isn’t linked to land where forests had been cleared.”

New method paves the way for clearer dietary guidelines on brain health
“In a recent study published in the journal Frontiers in Nutrition, researchers developed a method to retrospectively harmonize data on the association between dietary patterns and cognitive health from individual studies that vary widely in the methodologies and results.”

New research suggests intermittent fasting increases the risk of dying from heart disease. But the evidence is mixed
“Intermittent fasting has gained popularity in recent years as a dietary approach with potential health benefits. So you might have been surprised to see headlines last week suggesting the practice could increase a person’s risk of death from heart disease.”

‘Forever chemicals’ prompt new, stricter advice for eating fish from Mississippi
“Concerns about pollutants including “forever chemicals” have prompted state health officials to issue new guidelines for eating fish from a stretch of the Mississippi River between St. Paul and Wabasha.”

Ultraprocessed Foods Linked With 32 Types of Health Problems
“Ultraprocessed foods include ready-to-eat meals, snacks, and sugary drinks that contain a long list of ingredients and additives designed to make the food sellable or palatable. Now these foods have been associated with more than 30 health conditions, a review of 45 meta-analyses involving about 9.9 million participants found.”

Eating an avocado every day can add years to your life
“Scientists have discovered a fascinating connection between eating one avocado every day and an overall enhanced diet quality and healthier life. Spearheaded by Associate Professor Kristina Petersen and the esteemed retired Professor Penny Kris-Etherton from Penn State University’s Department of Nutritional Sciences, this study delves into how incorporating a single avocado into one’s daily diet can lead to significant nutritional benefits.”

Chronic diseases do not reduce the benefits of exercise, finds study
“A recent study shows exercise is also beneficial and safe for older people with multiple chronic conditions or risk factors. Exercise can improve physical fitness despite chronic diseases. However, exercise should be started safely and at an intensity appropriate for your starting level.”

Spotlight On: Obesity Matters
“Priti Chawla knows the pain that can come with weight bias and discrimination all too well. Growing up in India, she was often ridiculed for her body size. “I was the chubbiest girl in my class,” she recalls. “My classmates had no filter. I was always the one who was never asked for a dance. The bias and discrimination was both implicit and explicit.”

Medicare Part D to cover cost of Wegovy when used to reduce risks of heart conditions
“Medicare Part D will pay for the antiobesity drug Wegovy (semaglutide) when prescribed to cut risks of heart disease. The U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services this week issued guidance that current Medicare Part D and Medicaid coverage rules apply to the drug making headlines for its health effects including weight loss.”