What Will It Take for America to Eat Its Vegetables?
First lady Michele Obama has written a new gardening book. Called "American Grown," the book extols the virtues of sustainable local agriculture, school gardens and childhood nutrition.
What's the Latest Development?
First lady Michelle Obama's new book, "American Grown," is another effort in her quest to make Americans more aware of the food they eat and help the nation shake its obesity epidemic. "Obesity rates have climbed dramatically over the past two to three decades. More than two-thirds of adults are overweight or obese. Almost a third of children are overweight or obese, and seven out of 10 overweight youths will become overweight or obese as adults, according to government data." The center of her food manifesto has become the White House vegetable garden, where issues of sustainable local agriculture, national farm policy, school gardens and, most of all, childhood nutrition come to a head.
What's the Big Idea?
Perhaps the most tragic effect of our nation's nutrition ignorance is in our children's schools. Fewer children than ever walk to school, physical education classes are being cut and kids constantly snack on sugary, energy-dense foods. Margo Wootan, director of nutrition policy at the Center for Science in the Public Interest, says: "Right now, the food environment is almost perfectly designed to make us fat. Eating well is like swimming upstream. You can do it but it takes a lot of effort." Beyond the first lady's personal quest, the government has a substantial financial interest in maintaining a healthy population. Health-care costs directly related to obesity have been estimated at as much as $150 billion annually.
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Upstreamism advocate Rishi Manchanda calls us to understand health not as a "personal responsibility" but a "common good."
- Upstreamism tasks health care professionals to combat unhealthy social and cultural influences that exist outside — or upstream — of medical facilities.
- Patients from low-income neighborhoods are most at risk of negative health impacts.
- Thankfully, health care professionals are not alone. Upstreamism is increasingly part of our cultural consciousness.
The Bajau people's nomadic lifestyle has given them remarkable adaptions, enabling them to stay underwater for unbelievable periods of time. Their lifestyle, however, is quickly disappearing.
- The Bajau people travel in small flotillas throughout the Phillipines, Malaysia, and Indonesia, hunting fish underwater for food.
- Over the years, practicing this lifestyle has given the Bajau unique adaptations to swimming underwater. Many find it straightforward to dive up to 13 minutes 200 feet below the surface of the ocean.
- Unfortunately, many disparate factors are erasing the traditional Bajau way of life.
We explore the history of blood types and how they are classified to find out what makes the Rh-null type important to science and dangerous for those who live with it.
- Fewer than 50 people worldwide have 'golden blood' — or Rh-null.
- Blood is considered Rh-null if it lacks all of the 61 possible antigens in the Rh system.
- It's also very dangerous to live with this blood type, as so few people have it.
An innovation may lead to lifelike evolving machines.
- Scientists at Cornell University devise a material with 3 key traits of life.
- The goal for the researchers is not to create life but lifelike machines.
- The researchers were able to program metabolism into the material's DNA.
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