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Tagged : centers-for-disease-control

Natural and necessary ways to keep West Nile virus at bay

August 10th, 2012

By Barbara Kessler
Green Right Now

Mosquito-borne West Nile virus has spiked this summer, causing more serious illnesses than any year since 2004 — a total of 390 confirmed and presumed cases as of Aug. 7, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

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CDC’s new website helps you assess local environmental hazards

July 14th, 2009

By Barbara Kessler Green Right Now For those of us who are frustrated, daily, by the vast dispersed array of government information on environmental threats to our health, a new website assembled by the Centers for Disease Control may offer some relief. The National Environmental Health Public Tracking Network aims to help us connect to [...]

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Mosquitoes…Have to beat them, should you DEET them?

July 3rd, 2009

By Barbara Kessler
Green Right Now

It comes up every summer, that pesty green quandary: Should you use strong chemicals like DEET to fend off the mosquitoes and ticks that can transmit the insidious Lyme Disease and the potentially deadly West Nile Virus?

We want to use less toxic protection, formulas that are based on natural ingredients or at least those that haven’t been shown to cause neurological damage (albeit in rare cases). Ironically, using DEET (N,N-diethyl-m-toluamide) to protect against West Nile forces you to choose between potential rare neurological side effects. Will you overreact to DEET or be the unlucky one whose case of West Nile runs amok, producing neurological manifestations? Which raises the question — what are the odds?

Turns out you are more likely to get a severe case of West Nile than you are to have a bad reaction to DEET (and you can control that possibility with careful application). The Centers for Disease Control reports that there were 44 fatalities caused by West Nile in the US in 2008 from among the 687 cases in which the virus mushroomed into encephalitis or meningitis (meaning it induced swelling in the brain or spinal cord.)

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Food indulgence in America: How attitudes weigh us down

January 23rd, 2009

By Paula Minahan
Green Right Now

Piles of cracked and broken shells. Gnawed bones pushed aside. Remnants of what tempted with shameless excess. And in the background, a young Army recruit observes, “This is what we fight for, you know. Not so you can waste food, but so you can have plenty.”

It’s just another day at one of Sin City’s copious casino buffets as depicted in the award-winning documentary, Buffet: All You Can Eat Las Vegas. The film, shown on PBS and at indie festivals nationwide, is MIT cultural anthropology professor and filmmaker Dr. Natasha Dow Schüll’s sometimes humorous, often outrageous look at American indulgence.

“Las Vegas is a great exemplification of things that are shared, that are afoot in American culture in a very extreme way,” says Schüll. “All over America, the buffet amplifies things endemic to our society. It doesn’t surprise me this kind of waste, which is celebrated as a public ritual at the buffet, is carrying over to the more private domain of the household. It’s very OK to throw out food.”

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