Friday 5: Top 5 Stories of the Week

SUMMARY: This week we find coffee is good and apple juice is bad; laptops can affect sperm production in multiple ways; and just how many times a day we really think about sex.
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Good news for java lovers. This week we reported that “Women Who Drink Coffee Lower Their Risk of Endometrial Cancer.” Harvard researchers have discovered that coffee consumption can cut the risk for developing endometrial cancer by as much as 25 percent. And unlike other studies which have shown the powers of the almighty bean to help protect against a growing number of maladies (including brain tumors, MS, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and type 2 diabetes), decaffeinated coffee also works in reducing risk. Pour me another cup!

Controversy broke out over the internet on this week’s on the topic, “Childhood Obesity Warrants Removal to Foster Care.” Not all were in favor of the social welfare system removing a 200-pound, eight-year-old boy from his Ohio home after his mother failed to get his weight under control. Calling it “medical neglect,” authorities went to court to get an order to place the child in foster care after monitoring the situation for a year. What’s your take on this issue?

Tuesday’s story on “How Many Times a Day We Think About Sex,” is still a hot topic on Google. But then, when is sex not a hot topic? A recent study out of Ohio State University had students track their thoughts over the course of a day for 7 days. Results showed that the average college male thinks about sex 19 times a day, while their female counterparts log an average of 10. Food was a close second, where men had 18 thoughts per day and women 15. Sleep, not a high priority for studying, partying college students, averaged 11 thoughts per day for males and 8 for females. I must say that this is a far cry from the rumored average of thousands of sexual thoughts per day that men are supposed to have.

Apparently, the digital age has left men's nether parts in a squeeze, if you believe the latest science on semen, laptops and wireless connections. In “Laptop Wi-Fi Said to Nuke Sperm,” researchers tested sperm in close proximity to laptops and fond that the electromagnetic radiation generated during wireless communication can kill those swimmers dead in quick fashion. Not the first time we have heard this. We did a slide show in October on “10 Ways Your Computer Is Killing You,” in which we reported that a mere 15 minutes of laptop time can raise the temperature in the scrotum above what is considered safe and can affect sperm production. Watch out, guys…

This week we got a wake-up call about what you would think is a very benign food product: apple juice. In “Daily Diet: Consumer Reports on Arsenic-Contaminated Apple Juice,” we reported that the reputable consumer group found arsenic levels in apple juice up to nearly triple the drinking water limit of 10 parts per billion (ppb), underscoring the need for a standard to be set in juices. In researching this story, I came across the eye-opening fact that two-thirds of our apple juice now comes from China, where regulations of pesticides is significantly lower than in the U.S. The good news is that today came news that the FDA is now considering tightening restrictions for the levels of arsenic in apple juice due to the uproar from consumer groups. (Way to go, people!)

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