Environmental Health Related Articles & Blog Posts

  • Katrina Cholera?

    Katrina Cholera?

    Watching broadcast images of the devastation caused by the rushing floodwaters of Hurricane Katrina was heartbreaking. But after the fury of the storm had passed, my concern continues to rise. When sanitary water systems and sewage systems are overwhelmed, contaminated water and food can lead to explosive epidemics of cholera.

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  • Second Hand Smoke and the Brain

    Second Hand Smoke and the Brain

    Children who are exposed to even extremely low levels of tobacco smoke in the last 5 days score lower on standardized tests. Their performance on math tests is significantly lower, but lower still on reading tests. Their short-term memory scores appear to be unaffected. These startling results come from an analysis of 4,399 children 6 […]

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  • Autism and Inflammation

    Autism and Inflammation

    Autism and related conditions continue to become more common. Autism is the fastest growing developmental disability, increasing in frequency by more than 10 percent each year; this makes finding its causes and treatments an urgent priority. A new piece of the solution to the autism puzzle appeared online in the Annals of Neurology on November […]

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  • A Huge Idea About Organics

    A Huge Idea About Organics

    Young babies and elderly adults are living at important times of transition. They share some common vulnerabilities and possibilities. For example, the otherwise healthy people most at risk for serious problems from the flu are the very young and the very old. On the positive side, getting omega 3 fatty acids, particularly DHA, in the […]

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  • Pine-fresh Scent: Depressing?!

    Pine-fresh Scent: Depressing?!

    Air fresheners and aerosol sprays can lead to sicker babies, sicker moms, and moms who are depressed, according to an October 19, 2004 announcement from the University of Bristol. This is the latest news from the ‘Children of the 90s’ study (The Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children — ALSPAC, where 14,000 children have […]

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  • Crippling Our Children

    Crippling Our Children

    What can take otherwise vibrant, healthy teens and permanently give them the lung capacities of 50-year-olds? Air pollution! Perhaps spare the air days should be called spare the children days. The air in some cities is so dirty that it hinders normal lung development.

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  • Common Fumes Cause Asthma?

    Common Fumes Cause Asthma?

    Could it be that how you clean or how you decorate your home might influence whether your child develops asthma? Could the smell of new wall-to-wall carpets be linked to asthma risk? A provocative study in the September 2004 issue of Thorax suggests there is a strong connection. Researchers from Australia analyzed air quality inside […]

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  • Healthier Babies and Insect Sprays: A Change That Worked

    Healthier Babies and Insect Sprays: A Change That Worked

    Women who wouldn’t consider smoking while pregnant might not think twice about putting flea collars on their pets or spraying to control cockroaches. Thankfully, somebody did. While revelers were celebrating at midnight on New Year’s Eve 2000, a new federal regulation quietly went into effect banning an insecticide, chlorpyrifos, at least from products that say […]

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  • Baby Waking at Night?

    Baby Waking at Night?

    A SIDS Silver Lining Breastfed babies have longer sleep cycles than formula-fed babies, according to a study in the January 2004 Archives of Diseases in Childhood, but the breastfed babies are also more easily awaken. This might help to prevent SIDS. In the study, researchers used nasal air jets of varying force in an attempt […]

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  • Why Coal is an Issue for Families

    Why Coal is an Issue for Families

    About 630,000 babies are born in the U.S. each year with dangerous levels of mercury in their blood, according to the shocking 2004 figures of the Environmental Protection Agency. In the past, people have often assumed that the blood levels in newborns would be the same as the levels in their mothers. It turns out, […]

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