Pacific Standard

In Some States, Almost 30% of Children Don't Get Enough to Eat

Last month, the Hamilton Project, a policy initiative spinoff of the Brookings Institution, hosted a conversation with United States’ Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack on food insecurity. The event was accompanied by the Hamilton Project’s new report on the topic, which makes for mostly grim reading. The report finds that, though food insecurity, which increased sharply during the Great Recession, has declined, it still hasn’t returned to pre-recession levels. In fact, in states with particularly high levels of food insecurity, almost 30 percent of children live in a food-insecure household.

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How Peer Pressure Can Really Make People Save Water

After four years of drought, California governor Jerry Brown announced that the state is imposing a mandatory 25 percent cut in water use for the vast majority of the state's water districts. This is the first time in California history officials have mandated people use less water.

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How Being Lazy Can Help You Lose Weight

Social critics fret that Americans are growing fat and lazy. Well, newly published research suggests we may be able to combat our obesity problem by tapping into our inherent unwillingness to get up off of our butts.

It finds choosing a healthy or unhealthy snack may come down to which of them is nearest to our fingertips. St. Bonaventure University researchers Gregory Privitera and Faris Zuraikat report that, if placed within easy reach, people will eat more of a low-calorie treat, “even in a competitive food environment in which a preferred, higher calorie food is also made available.”

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Hate Kills: How Homophobia Takes Years Off of Your Life

This article originally appeared at Pacific Standard, and is reprinted here with their permission.

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Scientists Say There Are Messages Wafting in the Smells of Your B.O.

We, people, typically think of ourselves as people. It can be jarring to remember that we're also mammals who, like most other mammalian species, unconsciously send odor signals to each other carrying information about our gender, our health, ourreproductive state, our mood, and even our potential to be a compatible mate. If the idea that your secretions say something about you creeps you out, then you won't welcome the news that the revealing scent signals we emit may actually be the end-products of microbial fermentations carried out in our bodies' damp, low-oxygen creases. A recent study of scent signals in hyenas presents the best evidence to date that bacteria are responsible for producing pheromones in a mammalian species. The implication of these results is that the bacteria in our underarms may have a surprisingly complex role in our social lives.

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Losing Weight? That May Not Mean You’re Any Healthier

Why do we go on diets, anyway? Two answers immediately come to mind: To look better, and to be in better health.

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Eerie and Depressing -- Why Ordering a Big Mac Comes With a Side of Impatience

Are you feeling impatient right now? Do you find it difficult to slow down long enough to enjoy life’s simple pleasures, such as a sunset or a beautiful piece of music?

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Is Your Neighborhood Red or Blue? Americans Are Increasingly Segregating Themselves in Ideological Enclaves

This piece originally appeared on Pacific Standard.

Pacific StandardDoes your next-door neighbor vote the same way you do? How about the couple who live across the street, or your friends on the next block?

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Everything You've Been Told About How to Eat Is Wrong

If you go to the National Institute of Health’s website today, you will find a section on a “Healthy Eating Plan.” That plan recommends a diet “low in saturated fats, trans fat, cholesterol, salt, and added sugars, and controls portion sizes.” These recommendations may well have been copied and pasted from 1977.

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