16 Things You Need To Know Today (June 29)

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1. Coffee is more healthy than unhealthy, say scientists once and for all.

The potential benefits of moderate coffee drinking outweigh the risks for most adults, concludes a new study that looked at the drink’s association with heart disease, cancer, neurological disorders, and other health conditions. It’s worth noting that the study was funded by a coffee brand, but the authors declared no conflict of interest. (ScienceDaily)

2. Women’s sports legend Pat Summitt passed away, five years after her early-onset dementia diagnosis.

The winningest coach in Division 1 college basketball passed away yesterday at age 64. Summitt coached for 38 years, won 1,098 games, and led the University of Tennessee to eight national championships. She also played on the first Olympic women’s basketball team in 1976 and coached Team USA to a gold medal in 1984. (NPR)

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3. Should losing weight be part of breast cancer treatment?

A new clinical trial is aiming to find out if prescribing diets and weight loss for women with breast cancer will keep their cancer from coming back. The researchers are hopeful that it might help since obesity is associated with a higher rate of recurrence of breast cancer and a lower likelihood of survival. (NYT)

4. These are the world's most vegan-friendly cities.

CNN ranked the top 10 cities for vegan dining and we're happy to report our home base, New York, made the list. Other destinations include obvious choices like Portland, Oregon, and Los Angeles, while we were pleasantly surprised to see Detroit and Berlin nab spots on the list. (CNN)

5. Caitlyn Jenner just became the first trans person to cover Sports Illustrated.

Forty years after dominating the 1976 Summer Olympics in Montreal and appearing on the magazine's cover, Jenner has returned to the cover post-transition wearing a gold sequin jumpsuit and her gold medal. Regardless of your opinion on her, this cover is certainly a major moment for the trans community and its fight for awareness. And we're so glad that she's finally comfortable in her own skin—because every person deserves that. (mindbodygreen)

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6. Fake soil from Mars can be used to grow vegetables.

Scientists managed to get crops to grow from dirt imported from Mars. They weren't sure if the crops are safe to eat, given the toxic heavy metal levels of the Mars soil, but after testing a few different vegetables, they were given the OK for humans to eat. Not that anyone actually HAS tried them yet. Space food, here we come? (Washington Post)

7. Three world leaders could be teaming up to combat climate change.

President Obama, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, and Mexican President Enrique Nieto are soon expected to announce a joint plan to source 50 percent of their nations' energy from renewable resources by the year 2025. This aggressive goal is a promising sign for the future of clean energy collaborations. (EcoWatch)

8. Chronic fatigue is in your gut, not your head.

Researchers from Cornell University say they've identified biological markers of chronic fatigue syndrome in gut bacteria and inflammatory microbial agents in the blood. They say that their study provides more evidence against the idea that the disease is simply psychological. (ScienceDaily)

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9. Ohioans rejoice—you can now get a box of "ugly" produce delivered right to your door.

Produce delivery service Perfectly Imperfect works with wholesalers to bring "ugly produce" to consumers at a 40 percent discount. It's right at home in its flagship location of Cleveland, where only 25 percent of residents have access to fresh produce within walking distance. (Food Tank)

10. Your next leather handbag could come from a petri dish.

Brooklyn startup Modern Meadow is testing out production of leather that's formed in a lab. By growing animal cells under controlled conditions, it can create a natural leather that's more responsible from an environmental and animal rights perspective. (Fast CoExist)

11. Perdue Farms is overhauling its factories in hopes of raising happier chickens.

The company acquired Coleman Natural, an organic chicken producer and decided to put more effort into humanely raising and killing chickens. Without going into too much detail, the chickens will have much more room to move around and be active during life and will be slaughtered using "dramatically less cruel" methods. (NPR)

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12. Simone Biles vaulted her way into history at the U.S. gymnastics championships.

Gymnast Simone Biles defended her title and won a fourth-straight national championship this weekend, becoming the first woman to do so since 1974. Biles next heads to the Olympic Trials July 8-10. (Team USA)

13. Booming cities threaten our global health.

It's estimated that two-thirds of humanity will live in urban areas by the year 2050—and that's worrying the global health community. Besides the difficulty in controlling infectious diseases in big cities, there are also concerns about the long-term harm of exposure to pollution, including cancer and heart disease. (The Guardian)

14. You can get an "Orange Drink" from Starbucks' secret menu now too.

No, we're not talking about Tang. The drink, named after Orange County, joins the Pink Drink and Purple Drink on Starbucks' secret menu color wheel. The drink includes orange mango juice, vanilla bean powder, ice, and coconut milk. (FoodBeast)

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15. UK policy may be changing in a way that encourages women to have home births.

In 2014, guidance from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence was updated to inform women that midwife-led births are generally safer options for women expected to have low-risk labor than hospitals. The vast majority of UK women are still giving birth in hospital obstetrics units, but the hope is to see 30 to 40 percent of births at home within five years. (Telegraph)

16. This organic grocer wants people to be able to use food stamps online.

As a whole, Americans are eating healthier now more than ever, but the diet divide between the rich and poor is growing larger and larger. One in seven Americans uses food stamps, and they can't use them online—they have to be shopping in person. And only 30 percent of people living under the poverty line have access to a car, whereas 74 percent have access to the internet. That's why Thrive Market, an affordable online grocer that just raised $111 million, has launched a petition to push the USDA to allow people to use their food stamps online. (mindbodygreen)

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