6 Things You Need To Know Today (May 23)
1. Pediatricians put the kibosh on fruit juice in a baby's first year.
The nation’s top pediatricians are advising parents to stop giving fruit juice to children in the first year of life, saying the drink is not as healthful as many parents think. This is the first time the pediatricians’ group has updated its guidelines on fruit juice since 2001. "We primarily are supporting that kids learn how to eat fruit rather than fruit juice," said Dr. Steven Abrams, a lead author of the report and the chairman of pediatrics at the Dell Medical School at the University of Texas at Austin. "I think that comes across more strongly than it has before." (CNN)
2. Nena and Robert Thurman celebrate 50 years of marriage and offer some tips for a spiritual union.
The ex-model and ex-monk, respectively, followed the teachings of the Dalai Lama onto a lifelong path of spiritual seeking. And it's that, Nena says, which makes their relationship work so well: "If you share a spiritual outlook, it’s an area you can return to when you are having your petty struggles, which are nonsense compared to what you really care about." (NYT)
3. The placebo effect is too real.
The placebo effect has long been a fascinating subject for researchers. Patients have historically been relieved of painful symptoms simply because they think they're taking medicine that will cure them, when really they're just taking sugar pills. Even more interesting, some people know they're taking placebo pills and still experience symptom relief, leading scientists to think that sugar pills could play an even more useful role in the world of medicine going forward. (The Guardian)
4. Instagram is a complex, double-edged sword when it comes to the mental health of teens.
Despite it's campaign in alignment with mental health month, new research out of the UK shows that Instagram makes teens and early twentysomethings feel inadequate, anxious, and depressed. But in the same study, Instagram was cited as a helpful tool for self-expression and self-identity. The lines between social media and real life have never been blurrier. (BBC)
5. It's official: Over a million people marched for science this year.
The numbers are in and over 1.1 million people across the country joined this year's March for Science. Why did it take so long for this data to be released? Organizers took their time crunching the numbers, saying, "We really wanted to emphasize that it was a march about science and data and evidence." No complaints here. (Grist)
6. Allergies are more serious than just itchy eyes and a runny nose.
In the United States alone, children lose about 2 million school days a year to pollen allergies. And now, a new study shows that student test scores suffer when pollen levels are high, leading many researchers to ask questions about the possible cognitive effects of allergies and hay fever. (NYT)
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