“Quick & Healthy” offers some highlights from the world of health and wellness that you may have missed this week:
- Please get up and take a quick walk around the block before finishing this article. It could save your life. Every week seems to bring a new study indicating that sitting down at our desks is slowly killing us with diabetes, obesity, heart problems, and so on. A new study suggests that taking even a mere two-minute stroll per hour could mitigate the risks from oversitting, and provide long-term benefits.
- And while you’re out on your walk, perhaps take some time to get yourself screened for cancer. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the majority of adults do not get the recommended number of screenings for colorectal, breast, and cervical cancers. These findings come from the CDC’s weekly Morbidity and Mortality Report, and unfortunately show very little change from previous years’ reports.
- After decades of maintaining a policy that barred gay men from donating blood, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has drafted new recommendations to lift the ban. Beginning in 1985, as a response to the AIDS crisis, the FDA issued recommendations to blood establishments to defer donations from gay men indefinitely, and codified those recommendations in a 1992 memo, which has remained in place ever since. Gay rights advocates have long decried the ban as arbitrary and discriminatory, since HIV — the virus that causes AIDS — can be transmitted through heterosexual intercourse, and we now have advanced blood-screening protocols that were not available in the 1980s and early ’90s.
- The World Health organization (WHO) released its World Health Statistics report Wednesday. Among the good news: If things stay on track, the world will have met global targets for turning around the epidemics of HIV, malaria, and tuberculosis and increasing access to safe drinking water. The work continues, however. Read the complete report here.
Photo: Paolo Margari via Flickr