Health in the Headlines: February 14, 2017

These daily health updates are provided to you as a courtesy from IPHA member Dennis Brennan and affiliate IPHA member DuPage County Health Department.  We thank them for their contribution.



Happy Valentine’s Day


Health Departments in the News

News Tribune: LaSalle County Schools Ravaged By Flu
Are we in the midst of an epidemic? The La Salle County Health Department has been unable to say. Overlapping cold and flu symptoms aren’t monitored unless they result in hospitalization, making it difficult to say whether 2016-2017 is, statistically, amid an epidemic.



Other Health News

ABC 7 Chicago: Broken Heart Syndrome Is Real, Doctors Can Treat It
The end of a relationship, divorce, the death of a loved one - emotionally charged events can take a toll on one's health, and in extreme cases, on the heart.

AgriNews: Rat virus illustrates a need for unified health approach
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Illinois Department of Public Health have been investigating at least 10 human cases in Wisconsin and Illinois of exposure to Seoul virus, a strain of hantavirus that may cause mild illness and has the potential to cause severe kidney problems — but is distinct from a more lethal hantavirus strain that causes respiratory disease.

CBS News: Flu Season Hitting its Peak in 43 States
“This season we’re seeing a lot of the H3 virus, so this is the one where people get very sick and it normally affects elderly people children and pregnant women,” said Dr. Ben de la Rosa of Holy Name Medical Center in New Jersey. 

CBS 2 Chicago: Illinois registered more than 1400 Opioid deaths in 2015
State lawmakers, other local elected officials, and drug awareness groups gathered Monday morning in Chicago to discuss the state’s growing opioid addiction epidemic — which claimed more than 1,400 lives in 2015.

Chicago Tribune: Woman Claims Popeyes Gave Her Flesh Eating Worms
In a 10-page lawsuit filed last week, Karen Goode of San Antonio claimed that Popeyes and its franchisee Z&H Foods knew or should have known about the parasite when they served her in spring 2015.

CNN News: 52 Overdose Calls In 32 Hours
That was a big jump over the 25 overdose calls received in the same 32-hour time frame last week.

Crain’s Chicago Business: What if you could treat severe pain without narcotics?
The nation's opioid epidemic continues to make grim headlines as it devastates communities in Illinois and around the country. In Illinois, more people die each year of an opioid overdose, whether heroin or prescription painkillers, than of gun-related causes or car crashes, according to the Illinois Department of Public Health.

Daily Southtown: Health Pros Warning---Don’t steak your heart on Valentine’s Day
Valentine's Day often is celebrated with an elaborate meal including lavish steaks, sauces and desserts. But on a day symbolized by heart imagery, perhaps a better way to convey a feeling of love would be to prepare delicious lighter alternatives.

Food Safety News: Don’t Let your Valentine Die For Dinner
According to, “Are oysters really aphrodisiacs or just a Valentine’s Day marketing ploy?” researchers found that oysters and other bivalves, such as clams and mussels, contain rare amino acids that are not commonly found in nature.

Fox Health News: Want To Burn More Fat?  Fast 18 hours a day
A new preliminary study reveals a way to burn more fat—but you have to be willing to restrict all your daily eating to a 6-hour window. Researchers found that participants who took in all their daily calories between 8am and 2pm burned 6% more fat than those who spread out their calorie intake from 8am to 8pm, LiveScience reports.

Health and Fitness Cheat Sheet: Ten Home-Cooked Valentine’s Dinners For 2
Cooking at home benefits both your wallet and your waistline. But sometimes you’re only cooking for two, and you don’t want leftovers. Such is the case when you’re cooking at home for Valentine’s Day. Gourmet meals rarely taste better the next day. And on special occasions, you want to plate your meals, and be done with them.

Health Day: Tiny Babies May Face Mental Health Problems Later
Researchers examined 41 studies conducted from 1990 to 2016. The studies included more than 2,700 extremely low birth weight babies (less than 1,000 grams, or just over 2 pounds) and more than 11,000 normal birth weight babies in the United States, Canada and 10 other countries.

Kaiser Health News: “Death Doesn’t Have To Be So Scary”, wrote the man who is living
Since he watched his mother drop dead, Richard Bridgman’s fear of death has left him emotionally paralyzed.

Live Science:
Tragic Suicide Case Highlights Mental Health Needs of Refugees
The woman was nine weeks pregnant. She and her husband had recently been kicked out of her in-laws' home in the refugee camp where the whole family lived on the Thai-Myanmar border.

Medical Daily: Looking Healthy is More Important than Being Healthy When it Comes to Attraction
If you want to appear more attractive, skip the expensive creams and gym sessions and pick something simpler: carrots. A new study published in Behavioral Ecology found that to attract a mate you don’t actually have to be healthy — you just need someone to think you’re healthy.

Medical News Today: Exploring the role of blood flow during cardiac “events”
Cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of deaths worldwide yet researchers still don't fully understand how blood flows or even which components within blood can lead to cardiac issues.

Network for Public Health Law: Raw Milk Advocates Push for Legalization Despite Health Risks
The movement to legalize the intrastate sale of raw milk continues despite the fact that the FDA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warn that its consumption is a health risk. Raw milk is associated with foodborne illness caused by pathogens including E. coli, Listeria, and Salmonella. In fact, while it is estimated that around three percent of the population consumes raw milk, 82 percent of reported foodborne disease outbreaks from dairy from 1973 to 2009 were caused from raw milk. As a result of this connection to foodborne illness, it is illegal to sell or transport raw milk in interstate commerce under federal law. However, states may choose to allow the sale of raw milk within their borders.

New York Daily News: Sargento Recalls Cheese Due To Listeria
Wisconsin-based cheesemaker Sargento Foods Inc. is recalling a specialty cheese because of possible bacterial contamination.

Palos Patch: Police To Receive Peer Support Mental Health Training
Palos Park Police Commissioner Dan Polk has announced that the Palos Park Police Department will participate in an intensive two-day training program, hosted by Operation Shattered Stars.

STAT News: Why your doctor’s advice to take all your meds may be wrong
You’ve heard it many times before from your doctor: If you’re taking antibiotics, don’t stop taking them until the pill vial is empty, even if you feel better

United Press International: Time to pop the question?  Study finds married people have lower stress hormone levels
A new study from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh has found that people who are married have lower levels of the stress hormone, cortisol, than people who never married or were married and divorced or widowed.

USA Today: Here’s what scientists say is the perfect workweek
The French say employees should work 35 hours a week. Brits tend to be at their desks for 37.5 hours. Meanwhile, Americans typically spend 47 hours a week at work.



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