Bacteria That Make You Thin

The species of bacteria that dominate our guts may strongly affect whether we’re thin or fat. Researchers at Washington University collected samples of gut bacteria from pairs of twins in which one was obese and the other thin. Then they transplanted the bacteria into mice. The mice that received the bacteria from the obese twins became obese; the mice that […]

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Qatar’s weighty problem

The emirate isn’t just the world’s richest country, it’s also one of the fattest. Half of adults and a third of children are obese, and almost 17 percent of the native population suffers from diabetes. By comparison, about a third of Americans are obese, and 8 percent diabetic. The problem is that Qataris are so rich that they don’t need […]

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Nature’s cure for anxiety

People tormented by a neverending flow of negative thoughts can greatly benefit from an alternative to expensive psychotherapy or medications: a walk in the woods. Psychologists at Stanford University found that walking outdoors in natural settings can ward off the human tendency to harp on that breakup, layoff, or family problem. The study involved 38 city participants, some of which […]

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A bad year for bees

Colony collapse disorder, the mysterious scourge that has been killing off honeybees since 2005, has suddenly become a lot more deadly. This past winter, as many as half of all hives succumbed to the disorder—up from one third annually in recent years, and between 5 and 10 percent when hives were healthy. “It is a catastrophe in progress,” beekeeper Steve […]

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The pill and prostate cancer

Hormones found in birth control pills could be polluting the water supply and increasing men’s risk of prostate cancer. That’s the suspicion of Canadian researchers who found that countries that have the highest percentage of women using oral contraceptives also have the highest rates of men with prostate cancer. Women who take birth control pills excrete estrogen from the medication […]

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