Legal Hurdles Could Impede HHS Plan To Combat Rising STI Rates
HHS' new national plan includes measures to prevent sexually transmitted infections, increase research, and improve coordination among federal agencies. But Roll Call reports that judicial and legislative obstacles could hinder the effort.
HHS' First National STI Plan Could Face Obstacles
The Biden administration on Thursday issued its new multiagency plan to address rising rates of sexually transmitted infections, but experts see possible legislative and judicial hurdles that could thwart that effort. (Raman, 6/8)
The Washington Post:
An AIDS Epidemic Pamphlet Defied Ronald Reagan, Taught America Sex Ed
Thirty-five years ago, Americans opened their mailboxes during the HIV-AIDS epidemic to discover a sealed package from the U.S. government. The mass mailing came whether they wanted it or not, and it came with a warning: “some of the issues involved in this brochure may not be things you are used to discussing openly.” The 1988 mailer, which came from the U.S. Public Health Service, marked a bold step in sex education, launching a public discussion about HIV-AIDS that was grounded in science, and influenced public health efforts on diseases from covid-19 to mpox. It also caused a firestorm.
In other health and wellness news —
Study Finds Amino Acid Taurine Slows Aging In Mice And Monkeys
The first clue was blind cats. About 50 years ago, K.C. Hayes, a professor of nutrition at the Harvard School of Public Health, took on the mystery of why some cats experienced rapid deterioration of their vision. The problem, Hayes figured out, was that some brands of cat food lacked an amino acid called taurine, something cats don’t produce themselves. (Garde, 6/8)
The New York Times:
Energy Drinks Are Surging. So Are Their Caffeine Levels
It has been more than 25 years since Red Bull hit the market and introduced caffeinated energy drinks to the United States. While the company claimed its beverage would “give you wings,” it never said it was actually good for people. Yet as the energy drink market continues to grow rapidly, companies both new and old are trying to attract health-conscious customers with a wave of no-sugar, low-calorie drinks that claim to boost energy as well as replenish fluids with electrolytes and other ingredients. ... But there are concerns that drinks being pitched as healthy are resulting in children and teenagers consuming caffeine in unhealthy amounts. (Creswell, 6/9)
The Science Behind Teen Girls' Mental Health Crisis
A brain chemical essential to decision-making and managing stress is emerging as another indicator of why teen girls are bearing the worst of the youth mental health crisis. Gamma-aminobutyric acid, or GABA, is a neurotransmitter that plays a role in controlling anxiety and impulses. Low levels of it are associated with addiction and disorders like ADHD, PTSD and depression. GABA levels during puberty are overall lower than they would be for 18-to-22-year-olds, but they're even lower for girls in the weeks leading up to their period, said Marisa Silveri, who leads Harvard's Neurodevelopmental Lab on Addictions and Mental Health at McLean Hospital. (Moreno, 6/9)