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7 Things You Need To Know Today (January 23)

Lindsay Kellner
Contributing Wellness & Beauty Editor By Lindsay Kellner
Contributing Wellness & Beauty Editor
Lindsay is a freelance writer and certified yoga instructor based in Brooklyn, NY. She holds a journalism and psychology degree from New York University. Kellner is the co-author of “The Spirit Almanac: A Modern Guide to Ancient Self Care,” with mbg Sustainability Editor Emma Loewe.
7 Things You Need To Know Today (January 23)

1. What fish can pregnant women eat safely? The answer is more complicated than you might think.

The FDA edited its previous guidelines on safe seafood consumption for pregnant women to list more than 60 species in a chart that ranks fish as a "best choice," "good choice," and "choices to avoid." This simpler way of presenting the information was meant to give expecting moms more confidence in their food choices, but some nutritionists argue that the new rulings are too muddled and confusing. (NPR)

2. Your tasteless jokes actually mean you're smart, according to science.

According to a new study, making "dark" jokes (think jokes about death, disease, or warfare) may actually be a sign of intelligence. So the next time someone rolls their eyes at your sense of humor, blame it on your IQ. (Science of Us)


3. French people know how to keep work at work. And that might be why their kids don't have ADHD.

A new law giving French employees the right to disconnect from work on evenings and weekends adds one more protection to the balanced lifestyle already enjoyed by the country's citizens. (Mandated 35-hour workweek, anyone?) How does having fully present parents affect French kids? It teaches them the importance of quality time—and it might be a reason ADHD is 20 times more common in American kids than French ones. (Psychology Today)

4. One-third of asthmatics probably don't have asthma.

A new study put physician-diagnosed asthma patients through a series of drug challenges and breathing tests. The results revealed that over 33 percent of them did not show any signs of the disease. This is huge because about 25 million people in America have asthma. (NYT)

5. Climate change may soon jeopardize your dinner plate.

Using climate predictions, scientists now estimate that rising temperatures will cause crops of wheat, soybeans, and corn to fall by 22 to 49 percent, mostly due to water stress. "At very high temperatures, there can be direct damage to leaves and other organs of the plant — typically called wilting," says study co-author Joshua Elliott. (Scientific American)


6. Staying indoors too much could make you nearsighted.

Increasing rates of myopia have been correlated with the growing amount of time we spend in front of screens. But it might not just be our laptops that are to blame. It's the lack of sunlight that results from so much time indoors as well. A study showed that teens who got the most sun were 25 percent less likely to develop myopia by middle age. One more reason to get that vitamin D naturally. (NYT)

7. This new, antibiotic-resistant superbug is bad news.

A new superbug has emerged, contributing to the death of a woman in her 70s. The bacterium, called Klebsiella pneumonaiae, has thus far proved resistant to all FDA-approved antibiotics. While there are a few ways to fight these bugs, including dosing the patient with multiple kinds of antibiotics, the Nevada woman's death magnifies the increasing need to develop new antibiotics and stop overprescribing those that we have. (ABCnews)

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