6 Things You Need To Know Today (July 6, 2018)

Photo by Nataša Mandić

1. This surprising food might increase fertility.

A small Spanish study shows the effect of nuts on male fertility. Eating just two handfuls a day helped increase sperm count, motility, and more in a group of healthy young men. It's yet to be seen whether the results can be replicated, or if nuts can help men who have pre-existing fertility problems. (mindbodygreen)

2. The cold truth about air conditioners and climate change.

A study published in PLOS Medicine evaluated the future environmental impact of increasing air-conditioner use in response to warming climates—and the outlook isn’t good. As temperatures continue to rise, researchers predict air-cooling systems will significantly contribute to increased electricity demands and subsequent emissions of pollutants from electric power plants. The resulting health impact of declining air quality due to air-conditioner use could add up to 1,000 deaths per year along the eastern United States. This study adds to the mounting urgency to identify alternative energy sources. (NY Daily News)

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3. Do you know the signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion and heatstroke?

With temperatures hitting record highs in parts of the United States, it is important to know the signs of heat-related illnesses and when to seek medical care. Heat exhaustion and heatstroke can happen to anyone and occur when the body is unable to self-regulate temperature due to excessive heat exposure. The difference between the two is the severity of symptoms, which include fatigue, dizziness, and confusion. Heat exhaustion can be treated by seeking a cool shelter and rehydrating, but if symptoms progress to headache, vomiting, and dry skin, seek immediate medical attention, as it may be heatstroke. (BuzzFeed)

4. If you want healthy kids, do these five things.

A new study from scientists at Harvard University showed that mothers following five healthy habits drastically reduced the risk of their children becoming obese. What are they? Exercising regularly, eating a healthy diet, maintaining a healthy body weight, consuming moderate levels of alcohol, and not smoking. (Newsweek)

5. Stressful day ahead? Don't even think about it.

Seriously. In a new study, researchers at Penn State found that anticipating a stressful day when you wake up actually impairs your cognitive function throughout the day, even if nothing stressful ends up happening. (Talk about a self-fulfilling prophecy.) Just another healthy reminder to embrace positive thinking. (Science Alert)

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6. You've been washing your hands wrong all along.

Hand-washing seems pretty intuitive, but a recent study says that we’re all probably doing it wrong 97 percent of the time. The U.S. Department of Agriculture published a study revealing that most people fail to rub their hands with soap for 20 seconds when washing their hands. Twenty seconds is the amount of time recommended by the CDC to cut down on germ exposure. And if that wasn’t enough, the study also found that poor hand-washing practices led to cross-contamination of food and surfaces. (KSL)

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