Your very first moments of life can influence your risk of obesity for years, a new study shows. Babies delivered via cesarean section were 15 percent more likely to be obese as kids, teens and young adults than were babies who made the trip through the birth canal, according to the report in JAMA Pediatrics. The risk associated with a C-section was even greater for babies whose mothers had no apparent medical need for the procedure. Compared with babies born vaginally, these babies were 30 percent more likely to be obese between the ages of 9 and 28, the study found.
Acupuncture may ease constipation
Acupuncture to the abdomen, boosted by an electric current, helped relieve severe constipation, a new study found. Chinese researchers studied 1,075 patients with severe functional constipation, which means they were unable to have a complete bowel movement more than twice a week. They were randomly assigned to receive either a form of acupuncture or a sham procedure, according to the report published in Annals of Internal Medicine. During the eight weeks of treatment, 31.3 percent of people in the treatment group showed improvement (measured by three or more bowel movements per week without the need for laxatives) compared with just 12.1 percent in the control group who improved.
Sri Lanka is declared free of malaria
After a long struggle, Sri Lanka, the island nation southeast of India, was declared free of malaria by the World Health Organization. It has been more than three years since the last case. Sri Lanka almost succeeded in eliminating malaria 50 years ago, but its huge effort fell apart. The country became the example most frequently cited by malariologists to show how defeat could be pried from the jaws of victory. “This is a big success story,” said Dr. Pedro Alonso, director of the WHO’s global malaria program. “It’s an example for other countries.”
Tots at highest risk for chemical eye burns
Accidents involving chemicals splashed in the eyes were long regarded as a workplace risk. But toddlers have the highest risk for this potentially blinding injury at home, according to a study published in JAMA Ophthalmology. Before a parent can stop them, curious babies may spray themselves in the face with a household cleaner or squeeze a liquid detergent packet till it explodes. Researchers found that 1- and 2-year-olds had the highest rates of eye injuries from chemicals. Roughly 28 out of 100,000 1-year-olds and 23 out of every 100,000 2-year-olds had chemical eye burns while only 13 out of every 100,000 adults ages 18-64 did.