Sebelius Backs Safety of Vaccine for Swine Flu
The vaccine to protect against the H1N1 flu virus is definitely safe, says U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. Sebelius has been appearing on morning news spots lately to encourage people to get vaccinated, the Associated Press reports. "This H1N1 vaccine is being made exactly the way seasonal flu vaccine has been made year in and year out," Sebelius said on NBC's Today Show. "The adverse effects are minimal compared to what can happen when you get the flu," she said.
[Slide Show: 10 Do's and 10 Don'ts to Protect Yourself From Swine Flu.]
Riskiest Foods: 3 Tips for Protecting Your Family From Illness
With the release of the Center for Science in the Public Interest's list of the top 10 riskiest foods regulated by the Food and Drug Administration, you may be wondering what's left that is safe to eat and what to do to keep your family safe.
According to the report, leafy greens, tomatoes, eggs, tuna, oysters, and ice cream are among the foods accounting for about 40 percent of all food-borne outbreaks traced to FDA-regulated foods since 1990, U.S. News's January Payne reports. The analysis did not include meat products, which are not regulated by the FDA. Ironically, many of the foods on the top 10 list are "the most nutritious foods for us," says Sarah Klein, staff attorney with the food safety program at CSPI. "The problems of food-borne illness are so broad [that] it's not a matter of eliminating foods from diet," Klein notes.
Klein and the folks at CSPI offer 3 tips for protecting your family from getting sick. Among the recommendations is to practice defensive eating by handling your food carefully. Washing produce, while helpful, doesn't completely eliminate the risk of contamination. But it's always a smart precaution to avoid using the same cutting board for your greens as you use for raw meat, they advise. Read more.
[Photo Gallery: 10 Riskiest Foods Regulated by the FDA.] [Read: 4 Harmless Acts That Could Give You Food Poisoning.]
Family Physicians Group Announces a New Partner: Coke?
Nutrition and diet associations have come under fire for their relationships with food companies; most recently, the American Society for Nutrition was criticized for its role in administering the controversial Smart Choices food labeling program, U.S. News's Katherine Hobson writes. Yesterday the American Academy of Family Physicians announced its own corporate partnership program, called the Consumer Alliance, and said that the Coca-Cola Co. will be its first partner.
Under the terms of the arrangement, Coke will provide a grant—which AAFP President-elect Lori Heim says is "in the strong six figures"—annually to the group, which will develop consumer education content on beverages and sweeteners for its consumer-oriented website, FamilyDoctor.org. The AAFP, emphasized Heim, "has total control over editorial materials," which for now is the extent of the arrangement. Coke won't be using an AAFP symbol in marketing its products, for example, though the company's financial assistance will be credited on the site. The alliance shouldn't be perceived as a conflict of interest, Heim says. "The reality is that consumers are drinking sweetened and unsweetened beverages" and want to know how to incorporate them into their diet. Read more.
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