Here are some of the latest health and medical news
developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay:
Group Urges Hospitals to Evict McDonald's
A U.S. advocacy group is petitioning several hospitals to remove
McDonald's restaurants from their dining areas.
Corporate Accountability International, which fights corporate
abuse, outlined its position in a letter sent to the hospitals,
CBS News reported.
"In your role as a local health leader, you have allowed McDonald's -- a corporation that has disregarded public health in the name of profits -- to operate within an environment devoted to helping our children get well," the letter stated.
"A 2006 study published in
Pediatrics concluded that by allowing a McDonald's store to
operate inside your facility, you are not just affecting hospital
guests' consumption on the day of their visit, but you are
unintentionally boosting your guests' perception of the
'healthfulness' of McDonald's food. In other words, your hospital
is being used as part of McDonald's comprehensive marketing
strategy, a strategy that is clearly inconsistent with your goals
as a health institution."
The group is targeting McDonald's in this effort, but it's not
the only chain that contributes to the problem of unhealthy fast
food in hospitals, according to campaign director Sara Deon.
A 2011 report by the Physicians Committee for Responsible
Medicine said that some hospitals have up to five different fast
food restaurants and serve unhealthy foods such as country fried
steak in their cafeterias,
CBS News reported.
Dementia Cases Worldwide to Triple by 2050: WHO
The number of dementia cases worldwide will more than triple by
2050, according to a World Health Organization report released
Currently, 35.6 million people have dementia. WHO said that
number is expected to double to 66 million by 2030 and 115 million
by 2050, the
Associated Press reported.
The U.N. agency also said the proportion of dementia cases in
low- and middle-income countries will rise to more than 70 percent
as those nations see big increases in their populations of older
The agency noted that only eight countries have national
programs to deal with dementia, and it recommended better support
for caregivers, the
Neighborhood Features Influence Weight: Study
Neighborhood characteristics such as grocery stores and parks
have an influence on children's weight, a new study says.
U.S. researchers examined neighborhoods in King County, Wash.,
and San Diego County, Calif., and rated them in terms of physical
activity and nutrition for children ages 6 to 11,
ABC News reported.
A neighborhood received a high rating if it had good parks,
ample opportunities for children to walk to places such as
libraries and stores, and had numerous food stores that offered
produce and healthy foods. A neighborhood received a poor rating if
it had few good food stores, a large number of fast food
restaurants, and offered children few opportunities to walk or play
in good parks.
"The biggest difference we found in rates of obesity were in the places where the environment was good for both nutrition and physical activity, the rates were less than 8 percent, but if the nutrition and physical activity were not good, the rates went up to 16 percent," said study co-author Brian Saelens, a professor of pediatrics at Seattle Children's Research Institute, ABC News reported.
The study was one of series of related studies published this
week in a special issue of the
American Journal of Preventive Medicine.
Toxins Found in 'Non-Toxic' Nail Polishes at Calif. Salons
Many nail polishes used in salons and advertised as free of
three toxic chemicals actually have high levels of one or more of
the chemicals, California officials say.
The mislabeled nail products could harm thousands of employees
and customers of the more than 48,000 nail salons in the state,
according to the Department of Toxic Substances Control report
released Tuesday, the
Associated Press reported.
Investigators analyzed 25 brands of nail products, including a
number that claimed to be free of the chemicals toluene, dibutyl
phthalate (DBP) and formaldehyde, the so-called "toxic three."
Exposure to large amounts of the chemicals has been linked to
developmental problems, asthma and other illnesses.
Toluene was found in 10 of 12 products that claimed to be free
of the chemical, and four of the products had dangerously high
levels of toluene. Five of seven products that claimed to be free
of the "toxic three" actually had one or more of the chemicals in
significant levels, the
A decision on possible legal action will be made by the state
attorney general's office.
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