16 Things You Need To Know Today (March 4)
1. Brandi Chastain plans to donate her brain to CTE research.
The retired soccer player agreed to donate her brain to Boston University, leaders in the study of concussions and chronic traumatic encephalopathy. (NY Times)
2. There's been a big drop in unintended pregnancies.
A new report finds that the rate of accidental pregnancies in America declined 18 percent between 2008 and 2011, reaching its lowest level in 30 years. The researchers suggest that a big increase in contraception use, especially the IUD, led to the decline. (NBC)
3. Oregon will phase out coal by 2035.
The state just passed a historic bill that will eliminate its coal power and double down on its renewable energy over the next 20 years. (EcoWatch)
4. This may just be the scariest global warming stat yet ...
Climate change could kill half a million people by 2050, according to a new study on global warming's effects on the global food system. (Bloomberg)
5. More muscular men are seen as better leaders.
When asked to rank people's status and leadership qualities based solely on pictures, participants in a new study overwhelmingly associated men's physical strength with higher skills. There was no link between women and strength. (HealthDay)
6. Inducing labor may be safer than originally thought.
A new study of older women pregnant with their first baby who were randomly assigned either to be induced at 39 weeks or let Mother Nature take its course, found that the C-section rate in both groups was identical, and there were no health problems associated with induction. (U.S. News & World Report)
7. Nike launched a new shoe yesterday — and it's totally different from every other running shoe.
First of all, there's a sock-like part that comes up to your ankle and the laces are tied into "flywire." (Runner's World)
8. Officials of the International Olympic Committee met this week to discuss the Rio Olympics.
The conclusion: the games are still on, even if fewer people show up. (NY Times)
9. Could ancient art tell us more about the Paleo diet?
One of the world's oldest known works of art, the Venus of Willendorf, was long thought to be an over-accentuated symbol of fertility, but some scholars think that it suggests that the original Paleos could have been what we would consider obese. (WP)
10. San Francisco just raised the smoking age to 21.
The new law includes cigarettes and e-cigarettes. (Gizmodo)
11. A compromise on GMO labeling is being offered by Senate Democrats.
It would require manufacturers to disclose GMOs on a product's Nutrition Fact Panel. However, manufacturers would have a choice in how they comply. (The Hill)
12. Good news: the levels of toxic chemicals found in humans are declining.
This is encouraging proof that citizen action against hazardous chemicals can actually protect public health. (EWG)
13. Are wool sneakers the next big eco-fashion trend?
Maybe! Wool is durable, lightweight, tough, breathable, antimicrobial, and, of course, green. (Bloomberg)
14. Your furniture may soon come packed in mushrooms.
Well, sort of. IKEA is developing new packaging from mycelium (aka mushroom roots) to replace its standard nonbiodegradable polystyrene material. (Gizmodo)
15. This new dining club lets toddlers and parents eat high-end cuisine together.
Called Nibble + Squeak, it aims to make Michelin-caliber restaurants more accessible to children (and the adults who have to chase them around). New parents who want fancy food will no longer have to pay for a babysitter or rush through the meal to avoid temper tantrums. (Grub Street)
16. Ashley Graham now has her own clothing line.
Not only is she the face of Swimsuits for All and a Sports Illustrated cover girl — she's now launching her own size-inclusive clothing line with Dressbarn. The dresses are all priced under $70. (Elle)