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Coastal US Climate Changes Impact Human Health

Posted Mar 01 2013 10:24pm
Posted on March 1, 2013, 6 a.m. in Environment Healthcare and Public Policy

The US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and US Geological Sur vey (USGS) warn that the effects of climate change will continue to threaten the health and vitality of US coastal communities' social, economic and natural systems. “Coastal Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerabilities: a technical input to the 2013 National Climate Assessment” emphasizes the need for increased coordination and planning to ensure U.S. coastal communities are resilient against the effects of climate change.  A key finding in the report is that all US coasts are highly vulnerable to the effects of climate change such as sea-level rise, erosion, storms and flooding, especially in the more populated low-lying parts of the US coast along the Gulf of Mexico, Mid-Atlantic, northern Alaska, Hawaii, and island territories. The study authors also emphasize that storm surge flooding and sea-level rise pose significant threats to public and private infrastructure that provides energy, sewage treatment, clean water and transportation of people and goods. These factors increase threats to public health, safety, and employment in the coastal zone.

“Climate  Coastal Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerabilities: a technical input to the 2013 National Climate Assessment.”US Global Change Research Program, January 28, 2013.

  
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Tip #129 - Carrots Count
Carrots are rich in beta carotene, a free-radical fighting compound shown to protect against ultraviolet damage and help to enhance the immune system.

Harvard Medical School (Massachusetts, USA) researchers reported long-term benefits relating to general cognition and verbal memory, among men taking beta carotene supplements (50 mg every other day) for fifteen or more years. Because beta carotene is converted into vitamin A in the body, the team suggests that beta carotenes exert their protective benefits on cognition by preventing the build-up of plaques associated with beta-amyloid deposits, which are associated with loss of cognitive function and an increased risk of Alzheimer’s Disease.

As well, carrots may help promote cardiovascular health. In a study involving 559 men followed for fifteen years, a team from Wageningen University (The Netherlands) found that an increased consumption of alpha- and beta-carotene in the diet significantly reduced the risks of heart disease deaths. Specifically, the team found that the increased intake of carrots, rich in alpha- and beta-carotene, corresponded to a 17% reduction in the risk of cardiovascular-related death.

Crunchy and colorful, carrots are a smart choice for a mid-day snack or featured in a salad or side dish for dinner.
 
 
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