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Why Broccoli Sprouts May Be a True Disease-Fighting Super Food

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Broc­coli has long been con­sid­ered a “super food” but it’s sul­foraphane — a con­cen­trated form of the phy­to­chem­i­cals found in broc­coli sprouts — that’s shap­ing up to be the true dis­ease fighter.

A new British study found the com­pound might be an effec­tive treat­ment for osteoarthri­tis, a debil­i­tat­ing con­di­tion char­ac­ter­ized by inflamed, painful joints. Mice given an arti­fi­cial ver­sion of the com­pound showed sig­nif­i­cantly improved bone archi­tec­ture, gait bal­ance and move­ment, researchers from the Royal Vet­eri­nary Col­lege in Lon­don reported at an Inter­na­tional Bone and Min­eral Soci­ety meet­ing in Rot­ter­dam, the Nether­lands, this week.

Mean­while, stud­ies look­ing at the sup­ple­ment for treat­ing and pre­vent­ing can­cer are also promis­ing, said Duxin Sun, a phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal researcher at the Uni­ver­sity of Michi­gan in Ann Arbor.

We have shown that it may stop the growth of can­cer stem cells to inhibit the growth of onco genes and may also induce the pro­duc­tion of detox enzymes to pre­vent can­cer,” Sun told ABC News.

Sun stressed that vir­tu­ally all the tri­als look­ing at sulforaphane’s role in fight­ing can­cer have been done on ani­mals. It’s too soon to say whether humans will get the same ben­e­fits, though pre­lim­i­nary results are excit­ing, he said.

Stud­ies are also look­ing at using sul­foraphane to treat autism, a spec­trum of dis­or­ders that now affects one in 68 chil­dren in the U.S., accord­ing to the Cen­ters for Dis­ease Con­trol and Prevention.

In one small study last year, a group of autis­tic boys given a sul­foraphane sup­ple­ments showed dra­matic improve­ments in behav­ior, said Dr. Andrew Zim­mer­man, one of the study’s lead researchers and a pedi­atric neu­rol­o­gist with the Kennedy Krieger Insti­tute in Maryland.

Out of the 44 given the com­pound, 26 were calmer and more socially relate­able while receiv­ing the sul­foraphane,” he said, adding that the ben­e­fits dis­ap­peared once the sub­jects stopped tak­ing the pill.

The chem­i­cal might mimic some of the symp­toms of fever by stim­u­lat­ing a heat shock response in cells, Zim­mer­man said. This might push the oxygen-producing parts of the cells called mito­chon­dria to per­form at a higher level.

Par­ents of autis­tic chil­dren fre­quently report their behav­ior improves when they are sick with fever, Zim­mer­man said.

How­ever, Zim­mer­man said he cau­tioned par­ents not to rush out and buy sul­foraphane sup­ple­ments, which are unreg­u­lated by any gov­ern­men­tal agency. The osteoarthri­tis study found the com­pound too unsta­ble, at this point, to be turned into a viable medication.

As for con­sum­ing the tree-like veg­gie to get a full dose of the chem­i­cal, the arthri­tis study found it would take about 5.5 pounds of broc­coli to get the same amount of the com­pound con­tained in a pill.

Sun said it would take a lot of broc­coli sprouts to offer some pro­tec­tion against can­cer, as well, but con­sumers might be able to max­i­mize the com­pound with cook­ing methods.

Steam­ing broc­coli sprouts and then dic­ing in fresh radish has been shown to pro­duce the high­est lev­els of sul­foraphane, he noted.

It’s some­thing I eat, myself, all the time,” he said.

Fol­low @ABCNewsRadio
Copy­right © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.



Expert Tips for Healthy Airport Eating this Summer

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Plenty of trav­el­ers plan to shed a few pounds before their sum­mer trips, but that nec­es­sary evil — the air­port — is filled with poten­tial pit­falls for derail­ing your diet just as you embark on your beach vacation.

So what’s a hun­gry sum­mer flier to do?

Most impor­tantly, eat your typ­i­cal, healthy meal before you leave for the air­port. That’s your first line of defense for avoid­ing a food court filled with high-fat, high-calorie fast food.

Brooke Alpert, a nutri­tion expert an author of The Sugar Detox: Lose Weight, Feel Great and Look Years Younger, specif­i­cally focuses on meet­ing the demands of her clients’ busy sched­ules, teach­ing them to eat well with­out feel­ing deprived. She shared with ABC News her top tips for stay­ing healthy at the airport.

  1. Don’t sit and wait. You’re about to be sit­ting for a flight so before you board, don’t sit while you wait. Walk, walk and walk.
  2. Always invest in water once you’ve gone through secu­rity. Noth­ing makes you more likely to make a poor choice than dehydration.
  3. Don’t pur­chase any­thing to eat that you wouldn’t get on a nor­mal non-travel day. Indulge when it’s worth it, not on a pack of Skittles.
  4. Smooth­ies can be your sal­va­tion. So many air­ports have a Smoothie King, get the one with Greek yogurt and you have a sat­is­fy­ing pro­tein filled yummy meal.
  5. If you’re sweet tooth is call­ing, opt for plain dark choco­late. It’s your health­i­est option and pretty much guilt-free as long as you don’t eat the whole bar.
  6. Don’t be fooled by dried fruit. Most dried fruit is loaded with sugar so skip it and opt for a piece of fresh fruit instead.
  7. BYOT, bring your own tea. Teabags can go through secu­rity and are a great way to have a healthy drink while on the plane, just ask for hot water and use your high qual­ity teabag from home.

Fol­low @ABCNewsRadio
Copy­right © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.



Survey Shows Evolving Views of Men's Roles in Society

Stockbyte/Digital Vision/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — What is the Amer­i­can Dream in 2015? For most men, it means being a good hus­band, father, son or friend.

That’s one of the sur­pris­ing find­ings of a sur­vey enti­tled “The Shriver Report Snap­shot: An Insight Into the 21st Cen­tury Man.”

Of the more than 800 men sur­veyed, 60 per­cent said that the real marker of suc­cess is per­sonal achieve­ment at home.  Just under one in four said that finan­cial suc­cess is what rep­re­sents the Amer­i­can Dream.

In terms of how men should exhibit strength, 68 per­cent said the best way of doing so is through strong per­sonal char­ac­ter and a sense of integrity.

The other answers were:

  • Abil­ity to pro­vide finan­cially — 44 percent
  • Con­fi­dence to fol­low one’s own path — 40 percent
  • Emo­tional strength to deal with stress­ful sit­u­a­tions — 37 percent
  • Phys­i­cal strength — 11 percent

The sur­vey had the sup­port of The Cal­i­for­nia Endow­ment and was con­ducted by Hart Research Associates.

Fol­low @ABCNewsRadio
Copy­right © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.



Digital Device Users Getting Younger and Younger and Younger

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Nowa­days, before a child in the U.S. even says his first word, he may actu­ally be play­ing with an elec­tronic device.

Accord­ing to the Ein­stein Health­care Net­work, which sur­veyed 370 par­ents with chil­dren from half-a-year to four years old, more than a third of infants han­dled smart­phones and tablets by the age of six months and one in seven use these gad­gets for an hour a day by the time they turned one.

Also, 52 per­cent of par­ents, who were from a low-income, minor­ity com­mu­nity, reported that before the age of one, their chil­dren had viewed TV while 24 per­cent made a call to some­one, 15 per­cent used apps and 12 per­cent played video games.

Over­all, most kids were using mobile devices by age two, the sur­vey found.

Fol­low @ABCNewsRadio
Copy­right © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.



Study: Teens Texting While Driving Rates Down After State Bans

Onzeg/iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — As many states move to adopt laws ban­ning tex­ting while dri­ving, a new study found teens in states with­out bans texted much more while dri­ving than teens in states with bans.  

Within the states them­selves, the rates of teen tex­ting while dri­ving decreased from 43 per­cent to 30 per­cent in a two year period after laws were imple­mented, accord­ing to a study pub­lished in the Jour­nal of the Amer­i­can Med­ical Asso­ci­a­tion.  

The study used data from the Youth Risk Behav­ior Sur­veil­lance Sur­veys of 2011 and 2013, a nation­wide sur­vey of teen risky behav­iors per­formed by the CDC.  

Researchers specif­i­cally focused on the 14 states with new tex­ting while dri­ving bans.

Even though the drop in teen tex­ting while dri­ving in states with bans was very sig­nif­i­cant, about one-third of teens in those states still reported tex­ting while driving.

Researchers also found that expe­ri­enced teen dri­vers — those more than one year older than the legal dri­ving age limit –  were almost five times more likely to text while dri­ving than less expe­ri­enced teen drivers.

Teen dri­vers rep­re­sent the largest pro­por­tion of dis­tracted dri­vers, with cell­phone tex­ting fre­quently being a major dis­tracter, accord­ing to the study.

Fol­low @ABCNewsRadio
Copy­right © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.



Smiley Faces May Help Kids Eat Healthy

stockerteam/iStock/Thinkstock (CINCINNATI) — Get­ting chil­dren to eat healthy, par­tic­u­larly in school where a larger selec­tion of unhealthy foods is read­ily avail­able, is an ongo­ing challenge.  

Researchers in Cincin­nati tried a sim­ple reward when vis­it­ing an inner-city school.

For 3 months, they placed “Green Smi­ley Faced” emoti­cons near the health­ful foods, accord­ing to a new study pub­lished in the Pedi­atric Aca­d­e­mic Soci­ety.   

Researchers then intro­duced a small prize for chil­dren who selected a “Power Plate” for lunch, which was a well-balanced com­bi­na­tion of food items which cre­ated a healthy meal.  

After 5 months, the num­ber of chil­dren who pur­chased fat free milk increased by 549 per­cent and those who chose the “Power Plate” tripled.  

Fruit and veg­etable con­sump­tion also increased over the study.

Fol­low @ABCNewsRadio
Copy­right © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.



Gender Identity Versus Attraction: 'It's Apples and Oranges' Says Bruce Jenner

ABC News(NEW YORK) — When Bran­don Jen­ner, Bruce Jenner’s son, learned his dad is trans­gen­der, his “biggest ques­tion,” he tells ABC News, was who his father might want to be in a rela­tion­ship with in the future.

I feel like in life we’re all look­ing for love and so many things are done in the world just to try to gain love, you know,” Bran­don says, turn­ing to his dad. “From here on out. … I won­der how your—what your desires are in that regard. If you’re look­ing for­ward to meet­ing somebody.”

When peo­ple come out as trans­gen­der — espe­cially if they choose to tran­si­tion med­ically — one of the most com­mon ques­tions they face is how it affects whom they are attracted to and whom they love. The fact is—for many trans­gen­der people—it sim­ply doesn’t.

As Bruce Jen­ner tells Diane Sawyer, “It’s apples and oranges.”

“Never Been With a Guy”

Jen­ner tells ABC that when it comes to attrac­tion, “No, I’m not gay. I am not gay. I am, as far as I know — heterosexual.”

I’ve never been with a guy — I’ve always been mar­ried, rais­ing kids, doing all that kind of stuff,” Jen­ner adds. “There’s two dif­fer­ent things here. Sex­u­al­ity is who you per­son­ally are attracted to—who turns you on— male or female. But gen­der iden­tity has to do with who you are as a per­son and your soul, and who you iden­tify with inside, okay?”

Endocri­nol­o­gist Dr. Nor­man Spack, the co-director of a spe­cial gen­der man­age­ment clinic at Boston Children’s Hos­pi­tal and an Asso­ciate Clin­i­cal Pro­fes­sor of Pedi­atrics at Har­vard Med­ical School, says that at first—years ago—even he needed a les­son. “I was con­fused about, does this make so-and-so gay? Does this make so-and-so straight?” Spack says.

But after treat­ing 200 trans­gen­der adults, Spack still recites a les­son he learned early on from a mem­ber of the community.

Sex­ual ori­en­ta­tion is who you go to bed with,” Spack tells ABC News, “but gen­der iden­tity is who you go to bed as.”

“A Human Experience”

Jen­nifer Boy­lan, a trans­gen­der woman and author of She’s Not There: a Life in Two Gen­ders, is a par­ent to two boys and a pro­fes­sor at Barnard in New York. Boy­lan remained mar­ried to her wife, Deirdre, through her tran­si­tion. They have been together since 1988, when Boy­lan was liv­ing as a man. They are together still.

Boy­lan under­stands that some peo­ple may be confused.

It is a human expe­ri­ence,” Boy­lan tells Diane Sawyer. “To address this issue, as Bruce Jen­ner is address­ing this now, takes courage. It takes hon­esty. And it takes the sup­port of peo­ple around you who will treat you with love rather than disdain.”

My sense of myself as female was some­thing that never left me,” Boy­lan adds, “But I was always attracted to women. My gen­eral expe­ri­ence is that who­ever you were attracted to before remains who you’re attracted to after.”

There are no hard and fast rules. The impor­tant thing to under­stand is that sex­u­al­ity, who you love, and gen­der iden­tity, who you are, those really are dif­fer­ent things.”

Nick Adams, who works for GLAAD and is also trans­gen­der, urges every­one to remem­ber that sex­ual ori­en­ta­tion isn’t about sex, “It’s about who you love—who you want to fall in love with.” Adams, who tran­si­tioned in his early thir­ties, was ori­ented towards men even before tran­si­tion­ing to male him­self. Today, he has been with his part­ner John since 2001. “I am a gay man,” Adams says.

Jay Brown, of the Human Rights Cam­paign — a trans­gen­der man who iden­ti­fies as straight, may have been labeled a les­bian before his transition.

Take me,” Brown says, “I’m a trans­gen­der man mar­ried to a woman. My gen­der iden­tity is male and my sex­ual ori­en­ta­tion is straight. Trans­gen­der peo­ple can be gay, les­bian, bisex­ual or straight. We’re dads and moms, broth­ers and sis­ters, sons and daugh­ters. We’re your co-workers, and your neigh­bors. We’re 7-year-old chil­dren and 70-year-old grand­par­ents. We’re a diverse com­mu­nity, rep­re­sent­ing all racial and eth­nic back­grounds, as well as faith backgrounds.”

“A Poverty of Our Language”

As Andrew Solomon writes in his book Far from The Tree, “It is a poverty of our lan­guage that we use the word sex to refer both to gen­der and to car­nal acts.” In other words–your sex (whether you are male or female)—has noth­ing to do with, well, sex (as in—sex acts).

Dr. Spack says he has been “delighted” to see part­ners of all gen­ders stand by and sup­port his trans­gen­der patients. “I tried to play a game,” Spack says, “I’d try to guess whether a patient’s part­ner was male, female, or what. I never ask lead­ing ques­tions that would give it away. I could never guess whether — in their affirmed gender—they would be gay, straight, or bi. One thing has absolutely noth­ing to do with the other. And the data shows it.”

Every per­son is dif­fer­ent, every expe­ri­ence is dif­fer­ent,” adds psy­chi­a­trist Dr. Stephen B. Levine, “Every­one is a mosaic.”

So how do we know someone’s gen­der iden­tity? Their ori­en­ta­tion? The answer is we can’t—at least not until they choose to share it.

Fol­low @ABCNewsRadio
Copy­right © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.



Seven Questions Answered About Transgender People

m_a_r_t_i_n/iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — It is believed there have always been peo­ple whose brain and bod­ies are at odds when it comes to their gen­der. In the past two decades, the term “trans­gen­der” has been used to define this population.

As part of Diane Sawyer’s exclu­sive inter­view with Bruce Jen­ner Fri­day on ABC’s 20/20, a few experts offered to help answer ques­tions often asked about the trans­gen­der community.

1. So How Many Peo­ple Are Transgender?

While it’s impos­si­ble to know exactly how many trans­gen­der peo­ple live in the U.S., the most com­monly cited esti­mate is 700,000—more than the pop­u­la­tion of Wash­ing­ton, D.C. Most experts on the trans­gen­der com­mu­nity believe that the num­ber is prob­a­bly higher.

If you’re in a high school of 2,000 kids, you’re prob­a­bly going to have some­where between two and four trans kids in that school at any one time,” says Dr. Nor­man Spack, the co-director of the gen­der man­age­ment clinic at Boston Children’s Hospital.

Dr. Johanna Olson, the med­ical direc­tor of the trans­gen­der clinic at Children’s Hos­pi­tal Los Ange­les notes that it would be help­ful for the gov­ern­ment to col­lect data about the com­mu­nity. “What we really need is a cen­sus bureau ques­tion that says, ‘Does any­one in your house­hold iden­tify as a gen­der dif­fer­ent than the one they were assigned at birth?’” says Olson. “And that would prob­a­bly give us a bet­ter preva­lence num­ber and a more accu­rate reflec­tion of the trans experience.”

2. Is Being a Trans­gen­der Per­son Con­sid­ered a Disorder?

No. And, as Dr. Olson says, “Being trans­gen­der is not a men­tal ill­ness” either. In May 2013, med­ical pro­fes­sion­als removed “Gen­der Iden­tity Dis­or­der” from the Diag­nos­tic and Sta­tis­ti­cal Man­ual of Men­tal Dis­or­ders (DSM-V) — replac­ing it with “Gen­der Dys­pho­ria”. They also changed the cri­te­ria for diagnosis.

Gen­der Dys­pho­ria” is the term med­ical experts use to describe the dis­tress a per­son may feel when their gen­der iden­tity does not match the gen­der they were assigned at birth. There are var­i­ous treat­ment options avail­able to man­age this dis­con­tent includ­ing men­tal health ser­vices, hor­monal treat­ments, and— in some cases— surgery. There is a debate in the med­ical and trans­gen­der com­mu­ni­ties about whether or not “Gen­der Dys­pho­ria” should remain in the DSM. Some believe remov­ing it could limit patients’ access to insur­ance coverage.

3. Are There Trans­gen­der Children?

Yes. Chil­dren can be trans­gen­der, but not all chil­dren who exper­i­ment with gen­der play or exhibit gen­der non­con­form­ing behav­ior will be trans­gen­der adults. Experts say only a small frac­tion of young chil­dren who exhibit gen­der non­com­form­ing behav­ior will go on to be trans­gen­der later in life. In other words, most of these chil­dren will go on to report that their sex assigned at birth aligns with their gen­der identity.

Chil­dren who are diag­nosed with gen­der dys­pho­ria and con­tinue to expe­ri­ence these intense feel­ings through ado­les­cence are referred to as per­sis­ters. Those who do not con­tinue through puberty are desisters.

Think of some­one run­ning a hur­dle,” Dr. Spack says. “The per­sis­ters run over the hur­dle and con­tinue on the path to becom­ing a trans­gen­der adult. The desisters hit a wall and they do not tran­si­tion. The first thing to know is that you can’t define chil­dren for sure until they hit puberty. We don’t have a lit­mus test.”

What we need to under­stand is that in devel­op­ment, all of us get dra­mat­i­cally trans­formed over time,” says psy­chi­a­trist Dr. Stephen B. Levine of Case West­ern Reserve School of Med­i­cine, who has treated hun­dreds of trans­gen­der peo­ple, “by forces we don’t fully understand.”

Dr. Spack agrees, but adds that for that small frac­tion who per­sist, their feel­ings of gen­der dys­pho­ria are a sign of who they will be as adults. “I take care of many chil­dren who lift the sheets before they go to bed and pray that they’ll wake up with a dif­fer­ent body,” Spack says. “And then they lift the sheets when they wake up and say, ‘Why did this hap­pen to me? Why should I feel this way?’”

That’s why Dr. Spack tells con­cerned par­ents to get pro­fes­sional counseling.

If your kid expresses issues around gen­der iden­tity it is so, so impor­tant to take it seri­ously,” Spack says. “It is still all too com­mon for trans­gen­der peo­ple to take their lives. Some­times they don’t know there is treat­ment for them.”

As Jen­ner tells Diane Sawyer, his feel­ing of gen­der dys­pho­ria started in child­hood and “it never, never ever went away.”

4. What Treat­ment Is Given to Children?

Most peo­ple know their gen­der in early child­hood,” says Dr. Olson. So for an ado­les­cent expe­ri­enc­ing intense gen­der dys­pho­ria, the first med­ical option is to take puberty block­ers, which pre­vent phys­i­cal changes such as breast devel­op­ment and facial hair—buying a child time before a surge of unwanted hor­mones. It’s impor­tant to know that puberty block­ers are com­pletely reversible, but are not with­out some risks includ­ing effects on bone devel­op­ment and height. After puberty block­ers, the sec­ond step for a med­ical tran­si­tion is cross-sex hor­mones which have irre­versible effects, such as breast growth from estro­gen and facial hair growth brought on by testosterone.

A small Dutch study —out just last year— of trans­gen­der ado­les­cents who were started on puberty block­ers as chil­dren sug­gests that those who undergo this treat­ment (fol­lowed later by cross-sex hor­mones and/or surgery) turn out just as happy as their peers, avoid­ing the depres­sion that all too often plagues trans­gen­der youth.

Jen­ner notes that when he began hor­mones as an adult, the treat­ment imme­di­ately aided in qual­ity of life. They “take the edge off,” Jen­ner says.

As Dr. Levine tells us, some­times the most impor­tant step before any med­ical inter­ven­tion is under­stand­ing. “I want every par­ent with a gen­der atyp­i­cal child,” Levine tells ABC, “to be fas­ci­nated with that child, to be inter­ested in that child, to pro­tect the child and to help the child under­stand the world.”

5. Do All Trans­gen­der Peo­ple Have Surgery?

No. Not all trans­gen­der peo­ple have surgery—or any med­ical inter­ven­tion. Being trans­gen­der is not about phys­i­cal changes—it is about gen­der iden­tity. For a trans­gen­der per­son, their gen­der iden­tity does not align with their bio­log­i­cal sex.

As Dr. Spack says, “For trans­gen­der peo­ple, their bod­ies below the brain do not define their gen­der status.”

Not all trans­gen­der peo­ple report expe­ri­enc­ing gen­der dys­pho­ria — the term that describes dis­tress related to iden­ti­fy­ing with a gen­der dif­fer­ent from the one assigned at birth. But for those who do, med­ical inter­ven­tion can be a great relief.

There are var­i­ous rea­sons some trans­gen­der peo­ple do not have surgery. For many, the cost is pro­hib­i­tive. For oth­ers, hav­ing surgery is not the most impor­tant way for them to express their gen­der. As Dr. Olson says, “There are some peo­ple that are com­pletely fine—by the way—with the gen­i­tals they have.”

For those who do have surgery, the World Pro­fes­sional Asso­ci­a­tion for Trans­gen­der Health (WPATH) rec­om­mends com­ing to the deci­sion with the guid­ance of men­tal health pro­fes­sion­als who spe­cial­ize in trans­gen­der med­i­cine. They also rec­om­mend liv­ing in the gen­der role a per­son iden­ti­fies with for at least 12 con­tin­u­ous months. As Dr. Levine says, “This is not a cav­a­lier thing.”

6. How Many Trans­gen­der Peo­ple Are Lost to Sui­cide and Murder?

Fol­low­ing the death of Lee­lah Alcorn in late Decem­ber — the trans­gen­der young woman whose sui­cide note ended in the plea “Fix soci­ety. Please” — there have been an addi­tional eight trans­gen­der youth who have died by sui­cide in 2015. Nick Adams, who works for GLAAD and is a trans­gen­der man, says that all of us should be con­cerned about these tragic num­bers. Adams says he believes the num­ber of trans­gen­der peo­ple who com­mit sui­cide isn’t “because trans­gen­der peo­ple are more men­tally unsta­ble than non-transgender people—it’s because we live in a soci­ety that gives us very lit­tle hope that we can be accepted and under­stood as our true selves. The cul­ture needs to change so that trans­gen­der peo­ple can see a future for them­selves and survive.”

As for homi­cides, “In 2015,” Adams adds, “seven trans­gen­der women have been mur­dered in the United States.”

Dr. Olson says that some of these tragic find­ings apply even to her youngest patients, “There’s a lot of self-harm, there’s a lot of cut­ting, there’s a lot of burn­ing, there’s a lot of sui­ci­dal thoughts,” Olson tells ABC News, “There’s a lot of sui­cide attempts even in very young kids. And so it’s a scary time. And it’s a really impor­tant time to be lis­ten­ing if something’s hap­pen­ing like that for a kid.”

I would like to think we can save some lives here,” Jen­ner tells Diane Sawyer.

7. What About the Law? Are Trans­gen­der Peo­ple Protected?

This year, Barack Obama became the first Pres­i­dent to men­tion the com­mu­nity in an offi­cial address. “He actu­ally was the first one to say the actual word, “trans­gen­der,” Jen­ner says. “I will cer­tainly give him credit for that.” And just this past July, Obama signed an Exec­u­tive Order pro­hibit­ing trans­gen­der dis­crim­i­na­tion for fed­eral employ­ees and con­trac­tors. But not every state has a law explic­itly pro­tect­ing all trans­gen­der workers.

Right now in 32 states there is no explicit state law pro­tect­ing peo­ple from being fired for being trans­gen­der. Only 18 states (Cal­i­for­nia, Col­orado, Con­necti­cut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illi­nois, Iowa, Mass­a­chu­setts, Maine, Mary­land, Min­nesota, New Jer­sey, New Mex­ico, Nevada, Ore­gon, Rhode Island, Ver­mont and Wash­ing­ton) and D.C. cur­rently pro­hibit dis­crim­i­na­tion based on gen­der iden­tity. And accord­ing to the Human Rights Cam­paign, while “nearly 91% of For­tune 500 com­pa­nies include sex­ual ori­en­ta­tion in their work­place poli­cies” only “61 per­cent include gen­der identity.”

As Pres­i­dent Obama said when he signed the order, “Today in Amer­ica, mil­lions of our fel­low cit­i­zens wake up and go to work with the aware­ness that they could lose their job, not because of any­thing they do or fail to do, but because of who they are: les­bian, gay, bisex­ual, trans­gen­der. And that’s wrong.”

This video out­lines def­i­n­i­tions for trans­gen­der ter­mi­nol­ogy, along with appro­pri­ate ways to use each word.

 Fol­low @ABCNewsRadio
Copy­right © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.



Heroin Use Continues To Rise Over 10 Years

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -– The num­ber of heroin users has con­tin­ued to increase over the past 10 years.

From 2002 to 2013, the num­ber of heroin users has increased from 404,000 to 681,000, while the num­ber of users under­go­ing treat­ment has increased from 277,000 to 526,000, accord­ing to a sur­vey released Thurs­day by the Sub­stance Abuse and Men­tal Health Ser­vices Administration.

The increase has over­whelmed some sub­stance abuse treat­ment facil­i­ties, with almost one in ten of them work­ing above capac­ity, accord­ing to researchers.

With over 11 mil­lion abusers of pre­scrip­tion pain med­ica­tion, there was increas­ing con­cern that many of them would become heroin users.  

While there is evi­dence that abusers of pre­scrip­tion pain med­ica­tion are at greater risk for becom­ing heroin users com­pared to non-prescription drug abusers, only a small num­ber of them actu­ally make the tran­si­tion, accord­ing to the survey’s authors.  

Heroin users increase in num­ber every year, and while treat­ment pro­grams try to keep pace, researchers say it is an ongo­ing issue that needs to be addressed and monitored.

Fol­low @ABCNewsRadio
Copy­right © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.



Why Botulism Is Found in Canned Foods and How to Keep Your Pantry Safe

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — After a bot­u­lism out­break fol­low­ing a church potluck in Ohio left a woman dead and sick­ened up to 28 oth­ers, health offi­cials say canned food could be to blame.

Offi­cials are look­ing into canned fruits and veg­eta­bles as well as pasta and pota­toes sal­ads and other menu items, accord­ing to Ohio Depart­ment of Health spokes­woman Shan­non Libby.

So, you may be won­der­ing how to keep your pantry safe in time for pic­nic season.

Here’s what you need to know:

What is botulism?

Bot­u­lism is caused by a nerve toxin released by cer­tain bac­te­ria, accord­ing to the U.S. Cen­ters for Dis­ease Con­trol and Prevention.

All forms of bot­u­lism can be fatal and are con­sid­ered med­ical emer­gen­cies,” accord­ing to the CDC. “Food­borne bot­u­lism is a pub­lic health emer­gency because many peo­ple can be poi­soned by eat­ing a con­t­a­m­i­nated food.”

Symp­toms can take between 6 hours and 10 days to arise, and they include dou­ble vision or blurred vision, droop­ing eye­lids, slurred speech, dif­fi­culty swal­low­ing and mus­cle weak­ness, accord­ing to the National Insti­tutes of Health.

How com­mon is it?

Bot­u­lism has vir­tu­ally been elim­i­nated in this coun­try,” said Dr. William Schaffner, chair­man of pre­ven­tive med­i­cine at Van­der­bilt Uni­ver­sity Med­ical Cen­ter in Nashville, Tennessee.

There are about 145 cases a year in the U.S., accord­ing to the CDC. Only 15 per­cent of those are food­borne. The rest are either wound-related or some­thing called infant bot­u­lism, which involves con­sum­ing the spores.

Why is it found in canned goods?

The bac­te­ria Clostrid­ium bot­u­linum releases the toxin that causes bot­u­lism as part of its nat­ural anaer­o­bic process, mean­ing it mul­ti­plies in an oxygen-free envi­ron­ment, like a sealed can, Schaffner said.

Back in the day when there was a lot of home-canning, peo­ple didn’t always metic­u­lously fol­low pro­to­cols,” Schaffner said. “The spores were not killed and given that this was now an envi­ron­ment in a sealed con­tainer, the bac­te­ria could mul­ti­ply and pro­duce the toxin.”

With the advent of com­mer­cial can­ning and bet­ter under­stand­ing of bot­u­lism to put food safety pro­ce­dures in place, he said it’s now rare to have a canned good-related bot­u­lism outbreak.

What can you do to stay safe?

Unless the Ohio potluck inves­ti­ga­tors find that the food that caused the ill­ness was com­mer­cially canned, Schaffner said peo­ple have noth­ing to worry about. But if they see a can that is puffy or dented, dis­card it.

Spoilage of one kind or another likely occurred,” he said. “There’s no rea­son to sub­ject your­self to any kind of chance of get­ting sick.”

Fol­low @ABCNewsRadio
Copy­right © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.