May 21st, 2013
Miles of newly painted bike lanes have New Orleanians leaving their cars at home in favor of two-wheeled vehicles. Trading the truck for the Trek has not gone unnoticed, but the Big Easy is still far down the path to first-class cycling status. At the moment, New Orleans boasts more than 58 miles of bike lanes with ten on the way. This is a huge leap from the meager ten miles of bike lanes available before Katrina. This impressive new number transcends bikes to encompass the tremendous strides the city has made as they rebuild.
Click here to read the full article from NOLA Defender’s website.
April 10th, 2013
Every year sexually transmitted diseases, or STDs, cost the U.S. health care system $17 billion—and cost individuals even more in immediate and long-term health consequences. April is STD Awareness month, an annual observance to call attention to the impact of STDs and promote STD testing across the United States.
A new campaign targeted at Baton Rouge youth is helping to raise awareness about getting tested in Louisiana about these startling statistics. Check it out online here, or on Facebook for more information.
To read the CDC’s full story, click here.
Louisiana’s teen tobacco usage rates remain higher than the national average, with approximately 38.3 percent of high school and 15.6 percent of middle school students in Louisiana use tobacco, according to the 2011 National Youth Tobacco Survey (NYTS).
In light of these startling statistics, youth throughout the state are choosing to Stand UP! against the tobacco industry and its adolescent-targeted direct marketing efforts. Twelve groups across the state were awarded grants from the Louisiana Campaign for Tobacco-Free Living (TFL) to engage and get youth involved with tobacco control and prevention efforts through the Defy the Lies initiative. As part of the grant, Defy teams participated in the point-of-purchase (also known as point-of-sale) project, which focused on tobacco products and advertising in stores where youth are likely to visit on a regular basis, like gas stations, grocery stores, pharmacies, and corner stores in their own communities.
“Reaching out to Louisiana youth, especially during the transition from middle and high school, is crucial,” said Tonia Moore, Associate Director for TFL. “We are continuously working to get local communities involved in TFL’s Defy the Lies initiative, a youth movement that takes down the influence of the tobacco industry, promotes tobacco-free lifestyles, and brings awareness to media and elected officials about what tobacco products are being consumed by and sold to our youth. The time is now to get a better handle on the large number of youth using tobacco products and stand up to the aggressive marketing tactics being used today.”
March 27th, 2013
Researchers reported Tuesday that they have linked 180,000 obesity-related deaths worldwide to sugary drinks, including about 25,000 adult Americans.
Overall, 1 in 100 deaths of obese people globally can be blamed on too many sweetened beverages, according to a study presented at an American Heart Association scientific conference in New Orleans. Mexico leads the 35 largest nations in deaths attributable to over-consumption of sugary drinks, with the United States third. Japan, which has one of the lowest per-capita consumptions of sugary drinks, had the fewest sugar-related deaths.
In New Orleans, the Louisiana Public Health Institute and the Crescent City Beacon Community are striving to reduce obesity and type 2 diabetes through the txt4health program. Txt4health is a mobile health information service designed to help people understand their risk for type 2 diabetes and become more informed about the steps they can take to lead healthy lives.
Click here to read the full story.
New research shows that an age-old recommended stress-buster may actually work for this group of women: yoga.
Pregnant women who were identified as psychiatrically high risk and who participated in a 10-week mindfulness yoga intervention saw significant reductions in depressive symptoms, according to a University of Michigan Health System pilot feasibility study. Mothers-to-be also reported stronger attachment to their babies in the womb.
February 28th, 2013
The Louisiana Public Health Institute (LPHI) and BioDistrict New Orleans recently signed a MOU highlighting a new partnership designed to promote New Orleans as a hub for healthcare innovation.
The healthcare and biosciences industries are rapidly growing in New Orleans, which Dr. James A. Richardson, John Rhea Alumni Professor of Economics and director of the E. J. Ourso College of Business, has estimated to generate 34,000 new or retained jobs and $24 billion in economic activity over the next 20 years. By working together, along with their respective partners, the organizations will strive to improve population health outcomes, accelerate economic growth and employee/labor productivity, provide broader access to quality healthcare, and increase research funding for area Universities through educational training and workforce development opportunities.
February 8th, 2013
While the effects of alcohol abuse are well known, “binge drinking is an important and under-recognized women’s health issue,” according to Tom Frieden, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The recent report looked at the drinking behavior of approximately 278,000 U.S. women aged 18 and older and 7,500 U.S. high school girls, and found that:
- 1 in 8 women and 1 in 5 high school girls report binge drinking;
- half of all high school girls who drink alcohol report binge drinking;
- drinking too much, including binge drinking, causes 23,000 deaths among women and girls in the U.S. each year; and
- 14 million U.S. women binge drink three times a month and consume an average of six drinks per binge.
January 29th, 2013
Household cleaning products may contain toxic substances linked to health problems such as asthma, allergic reactions, and cancer, according to a new report by the Environmental Working Group.
The environmental group rated more than 2,000 household cleaners — from laundry soaps and stain removers to bathroom cleaners and floor care products. Products are graded A to F based on the safety of the ingredients and how well the maker discloses those ingredients.
January 23rd, 2013
You’re right to want to do whatever is in your power to stay flu-free this season, especially given the severity of this year’s outbreak. But before you put your personal flu-prevention plan in action, make sure those methods are actually going to do the trick. Pritish Tosh, M.D., an assistant professor at the Mayo Clinic’s Division of Infectious Diseases, details some of the biggest mistakes people are making when it comes to flu prevention.
January 17th, 2013
The Food and Drug Administration has proposed sweeping rules to curtail food-borne illnesses that kill thousands of Americans annually — and, in the process, to transform itself into an agency that prevents contamination, not one that merely investigates outbreaks.
The rules, drafted with an eye toward strict standards in California and some other states, enable the implementation of the landmark Food Safety Modernization Act that President Obama signed two years ago in response to a string of deadly outbreaks of illness from contaminated spinach, eggs, peanut butter and imported produce.
The first proposed rule would require domestic and overseas producers of food sold in the U.S. to craft a plan to prevent and deal with contamination of their products. The plans would be open to federal audits. The second rule would address contamination of fruit and vegetables during harvesting.
Click here to read more from the LA Times.