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A comic that accurately sums up depression and anxiety and the uphill battle of living with them

Sarah Flanigan has been fighting depression since she was 10 years old and anxiety since she was 16. “I wish everyone knew that depression is not something that people can just ‘snap out of,'” she explains. “I mean, if I could ‘snap out of it,’ I would have by now.”

Depression and anxiety disorders are real illnesses. Mental illnesses are not “in someone’s head,” they’re not something a person can “just get over,” and they affect so many of us over 40 million people in the U.S. alone.

Despite how common they are, it’s still really difficult to explain to people who may have never experienced a mental illness.

Enter: cute, clever illustrations that get the job done.

Nick Seluk, who creates the amazing comics at The Awkward Yeti, heard from reader Sarah Flanigan. She shared her story of depression and anxiety with him. If it could help even one person, she said, it would be worth it.

Nick turned her story into a fantastic comic that perfectly captures the reality of living with depression and anxiety.

“I’ve been through and seen depression and anxiety in action, and thought Sarah’s story was so perfectly simple,” he told me. “We all get sick physically and mentally, but we need to be open to talking (and laughing) about [it].”

I couldn’t agree more, and I think this comic will resonate with a lot of people.

Simple yet powerful, right?

“The hardest part of living with depression and anxiety for me is feeling like I have to hide it,” Sarah said. “I’ve always been known as the happy one in my group of friends. Everyone’s always so shocked when I tell them I have depression or they see the self-harm scars.”

“It’s much harder than it should be to say, ‘Hey, I have depression and I’ve been struggling with self-harm since I was 10 and I just really need your support to get me through tonight,'” Sarah explained.

Let’s all keep working to make it easier for our friends, family members, and ourselves to get support. Let’s keep talking about it.

Read more: http://www.upworthy.com/a-comic-that-accurately-sums-up-depression-and-anxiety-and-the-uphill-battle-of-living-with-them?c=tpstream

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Aldi confirms up to 100% horsemeat in beef products

Supermarket says it is angry with supplier Comigel after tests reveal 30% and 100% horsemeat in withdrawn ready meals

The environment secretary is due to meet the Food Standards Agency, food suppliers and retailers on Saturday to discuss the horsemeat scandal after Aldi became the latest supermarket to confirm its withdrawn beef products contained up to 100% horsemeat.

Owen Paterson said it was unacceptable that consumers were mis-sold products, but that the problems originated overseas.

“We believe that the two particular cases of the frozen burgers from Tesco and the lasagne from Findus are linked to suppliers in Ireland and France respectively. We and the Food Standards Agency are working closely with the authorities in these countries, as well as with Europol, to get to the root of the problem,” he said.

Paterson said he believed the food was safe but urged consumers to return products to the retailers. “The French authorities are saying they are viewing the issue as a case of fraud rather than food safety. Anyone who has these products in their freezer should return them to retailers as a precaution.”.

Findus denied reports that the company first knew there was horsemeat in its products last year.

“Findus want to be absolutely explicit that they were not aware of any issue of contamination with horsemeat last year,” it said in a statement. “They were only made aware of a possible August 2012 date through a letter dated 2 February 2013 from the supplier Comigel. By then Findus was already conducting a full supply chain traceability review and had pro-actively initiated DNA testing.”

The Metropolitan police said in a statement it was not carrying out a criminal investigation. “Although we have met with the FSA we have not started an investigation and will not do so unless it becomes clear there has been any criminality under the jurisdiction of the Metropolitan police service.”

Aldi said it felt “angry and let down” by its French supplier Comigel after tests on Today’s Special frozen beef lasagne and Today’s Special frozen spaghetti bolognese found they contained between 30% and 100% horsemeat.

Comigel, which also produced the contaminated Findus beef lasagnes, has blamed its suppliers. Erick Lehagre said he believed his company was buying French beef from a company called Spanghero but it had since told him it had come from Romania.

A spokesman for Aldi said random tests had shown that the products they had withdrawn contained between 30% and 100% horsemeat.

“This is completely unacceptable and like other affected companies, we feel angry and let down by our supplier. If the label says beef, our customers expect it to be beef. Suppliers are absolutely clear that they are required to meet our stringent specifications and that we do not tolerate any failure to do so,” he said.

The company added that it would test the meals for the veterinary drug phenylbutazone, often referred to as bute, but said it was confident the meals were safe.

Hospitals and education authorities were also checking the food they provide for traces of horsemeat. A spokeswoman for the Local Authority Caterers Association said: “We are as sure as we can be that this is not affecting the school catering area.”

She said there were strict guidelines around food safety and supplying dinners in schools, including transparency and traceability of ingredient provenance, and this was written into contracts.

Food businesses have been told to send test results on all their products to the FSA by Friday but Paterson is expected to tell MPs in a statement on Monday that some suppliers have been complaining to departmental officials that they have come under pressure from supermarket suppliers to cut corners.

As David Cameron indicated that he would have no qualms about eating the sort of processed meat dishes that have been at the heart of the recent scare, authorities insisted there was no evidence that frozen food in general was a risk to human health.

But the FSA advised consumers who had bought affected beef lines from Findus not to eat them. They had not been tested for the presence of phenylbutazone, which is banned in the human food chain. It can cause a serious blood disorder in rare cases.

The Guardian has also established that the FSA has been unable to trace all the horses slaughtered in the UK that tested positive for bute last year. The agency has routinely been testing less than 1% of slaughtered horses for the drug, but found four positives in a sample of 82 carcasses in 2012. It carried out a special additional survey on a further 63 horses last year and found 5% of those contained residues, bringing the total of positives to nine.

The Red Lion abattoir, owned by High Peak Meat Exports, has admitted that two of its slaughtered horses had tested positive for bute “historically” but said this was typical of the industry as a whole and that residue levels were so low as not to be a public health issue. The abattoir is currently under investigation by the FSA for alleged animal welfare abuses, and three of its slaughterers have had their licences to kill horses rescinded. The company said it was the FSA’s responsibility to inspect horses at abattoirs and decide whether they were fit for the human food chain.

The FSA found six of the horses found to contain bute last year had been exported to France, two were still being traced, and one had been allegedly returned to two owners in the north of England for personal consumption. However the family of one of the owners, in Chorley, Lancashire, told officials they had never received the carcass nor expected to receive it.

Some companies have told the Guardian they began testing their own products soon after the first cases were reported in Ireland in mid-January. Full details of the testing requirements will be sent to the industry on Monday, although the agency says companies already have enough information to get on with the job and return results by next Friday.

The agency said evidence of the significant amounts of horsemeat in burgers and lasagne pointed “to either gross negligence or deliberate contamination in the food chain”.

It said two particular cases of horse DNA in frozen burgers from Tesco and the lasagne from Findus were linked to suppliers in Ireland and France respectively. “We are working closely with the authorities in these countries to get to the root of the problem. Our priority remains to protect UK consumers.”

Tesco which withdrew burger lines after one of its products made at an Irish plant had 29% equine DNA and withdrew lasagne made by Comigel said it had already begun testing other beef lines at independent laboratories.

Cow and Gate, one of the UK’s major baby food companies, began testing its 14 lines containing beef in the second half of last month. The results were due soon, it said. The company, part of the French-based multinational Danone, has no production plants in Britain but has factories in France and Spain. It insists it can trace meat back to a specific cow. Heinz said it did not source from Comigel and would be responding to the request for testing.

“We only source beef for our baby food recipes as whole muscle meat. We are continuing to keep the issue under close review with our suppliers as more information becomes available about the incident and root cause.”

Baxters and Bird’s Eye were among other companies who said they had begun their own tests. Both said none of their products came from any suppliers so far implicated. The Food and Drink Federation, which represents the interests of the UK food industry, emphasised the “small number” of products where significant levels of horsemeat had been detected so far and said it was “unlikely” the national testing programme would reveal negligence or fraud by other suppliers.

Meanwhile Findus said it knew there was a potential problem with its lasagnes two days before the products were withdrawn. It was looking into claims by the Labour MP Tom Watson that meat used by Comigel may have been suspect since August last year.

Labour has claimed the loss of 700 trading standards officers in three years has made this type of consumer fraud more widespread.

It also points to FSA’s Meat Hygiene Service suffering cuts of 12m in the four years to 2014, with the result that the amount of food checked in laboratories has gone down by as much as 30%.

Read more: http://www.theguardian.com/business/2013/feb/09/aldi-100-percent-horsemeat-beef-products

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What Depression Actually Is, Because Its More Than Just Being Sad

Depression is doing everything you can to hide it. Because theres nothing glorified about it. Theres nothing beautiful about a bad night as you fall you your knees, in a silent scream, that no one hears because youre alone and you need to be until you get through it.

Its the sleepless nights as you lay awake at 2 am staring at the ceiling.

Its that time of year, you just get a little bit sadder for no reason.

Its the tears you dont tell people you cry because you dont really know why youre crying, you just know you need to.

Its the want and need to be around people but at the same time, you push them away.

Depression is watching across social media, everyones highlight reels and you know its not an accurate depiction of their life yet you still compare yourself to them.

Its the plans canceled last minute because you couldnt muster the strength to get out of bed.

Its your alarm going off in the morning and you just want to go back to sleep.

Depression is that cloud that doesnt seem to go away ever. And even in those happy moments, you cling to, you know its still hovering over you. Depression waits. It creeps and lurks. It waits for the best day of your life and your happiest moment just so the next one can be your worst.

Its the fear of such happiness because you know its bound to fade.

Its every good day, that are few and far between and that’s what you hang onto.

Its the struggle in explaining to people when they ask why are you depressed? You just dont know and you dont know how to fix it. Its just a feeling you cant shake but youre learning to work through.

Depression are toxic habits or people you gravitate towards.

Its drinking the way you do because at least for a moment your pain is numbed. You know the effects lead to being even more depressed the next day. And you know alcohol is a depressant but being numb helps sometimes.

Depression is the constant unbalance of things in your life.

Its either overexercising and being at the gym for hours or staying in bed for weeks immobile.

Its either sleeping too much or too little. But no matter what, youre always tired.

Its eating too much or just never being hungry. Its someone asking, ‘When was the last time you ate?’ And you actually don’t know the answer.

Its weight loss that people commend you for but you know even you couldnt help it.

Depression is people asking if youre okay and you dont respond with Im sad. You simply say, ‘I’m tired.’

Its the envy of looking at others and just wanting to be that happy. So you glamorize your own life so it appears that way.

It’s that really scary moment when you open up to someone about what it is you deal with. And that new level of friendship you reach, when they welcome you with open arms and it almost brings you to tears.

Its loving people unbelievably hard because youre still learning to love yourself.

It’s looking ahead and looking forward to certain days in your life and really appreciating everything.

And even though you might not say it, as often as you should, it’s the love you have for everyone in your life which gives you strength.

Depression is becoming addicted to anything that gives you purpose. Whether its being a perfectionist in academics or becoming a workaholic. Its becoming the most involved in a group or organization because you need something to look forward to. Its excelling in sports because it really helps to have that and a team to fall back on.

Its the need to be busy because if youre not youll spend too much time alone and everything will get worse.

But more than that, depression is the person who would do anything to make others happy because someone elses happiness is their own.

Depression is being overly observant because you know what its like to hide things, so you look for it in others.

Its being the first one willing to help and being the person you wish you had. Knowing well, there’s nothing you can say or do but be there for them and that’s okay.

But more than that, depression is a strength in you because theres nothing harder than overcoming demons within yourself.

Its the trust people have in you, knowing they can turn to you without judgment.

It’s the excitement you bring to others because even though you’re sad, you do love life.

Depression is being the happiest, saddest person, people know but there’s a bit of beauty to someone who knows both emotions at such an extreme level.

Depression is an appreciation and gratitude for life. It’s knowing no matter what happens things will get better.

Depression is hope even in moments that seem hopeless.

It’s not letting this define who you are but rather learning to live through it and being the example others can follow.

Read more: http://thoughtcatalog.com/kirsten-corley/2017/01/what-depression-actually-is-because-its-more-than-just-being-sad/

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Youre Allowed To Leave


“If you ever find yourself in the wrong story, leave. Mo Willems.

Youre allowed to leave any story you dont find yourself in. Youre allowed to leave any story you dont yourself in.

Youre allowed to leave a city that has dimmed your light instead of making you shine brighter, youre allowed to pack all your bags and start over somewhere else and youre allowed to redefine the of your life.

Youre allowed to quit the job you hate even if the world tells you not to and youre allowed to search for something that makes you look forward to tomorrow and to the rest of your life.

Youre allowed to leave someone you love if theyre treating you poorly, youre allowed to put yourself first if youre settling and youre allowed to walk away when youve tried over and over again butnothing has changed.

Youre allowed to let toxic friends go, youre allowed to surround yourself with love, and people who encourage and nurture you. Youre allowed to pick the kind of you need in your life.

Youre allowed to forgive yourself for your biggest and smallestmistakes and youre allowed to be kind to yourself, youre allowed to look in the mirror and actually the person you see.

Youre allowed to set yourself free from your own expectations.

We sometimes look at leaving as a bad thing or associate it with giving up or quitting, but sometimes leaving is the best thing you can do for yourself.

Leaving allows you to change directions, to start over, to rediscover yourself and the world. Leaving sometimes saves you from staying stuck in the wrong place with the wrong people.

Leaving opens a new door for change, growth, opportunities and

You always have thechoice to leave until you find where you belong and what makes you happy.

Youre even allowed to leave the old behind and reinvent yourself.

Rania Naim is a poet and author of the new book , available here.

Read more: http://thoughtcatalog.com/rania-naim/2016/07/youre-allowed-to-leave/

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‘Beer yoga’ is a real thing, now, because of course it is


Hmm, beer.
Image: bieryoga/facebook

Nothing like putting down an icy cold beer. Except, of course, achieving a higher state of being and eventual transcendence of the Self through the practice of yoga.

But what if you could do both, at the same time?

Yes: Beer yoga is here. After being enjoyed by Berlin hipsters, it’s now found its way to Australian shoresa land where beer’s most definitely a religious practice, at least as much as yoga. And not in the best way.

Germany’s BierYoga A.K.A BeerYoga bills itself as the “marriage of two great lovesbeer and yoga. Both are centuries-old therapies for mind, body and soul,” according to its website.

And if you think they’re just being cute, think again.

Image: bieryoga/facebook

“BeerYoga is fun but it’s no joke,” founder and yogi Jhula writes. “We take the philosophies of yoga and pair it with the pleasure of beer-drinking to reach your highest level of consciousness.”

But even Jhula wasn’t the first person to promote enlightenment through yoga under the influence of alcohol. The instructor told Ex Berliner they first saw it done at (American culture festival/desert apocalypse party shitshow) Burning Man.

But wherever it came from, it’s definitely now a thing, and a thing being marketed unironically Down Under.

Two special sessions of beer meets asana will take place in Sydney this weekend, where students can learn yoga poses involving “beer salutations” and balancing beer bottles on one’s headjust watch out for bottle smashes.

The event page assures would-be attendees that no yoga experience is necessary. Just an “open mind and a love of beer.”

And if you think that all this does nothing to curb binge-drinking and/or cheapens a legitimate and sadly oft-perverted spiritual practice, then you can just Namaste away.

[h/t Broadsheet]

BONUS: NBD, just a massive alligator out for a stroll

Read more: http://mashable.com/2017/01/17/beer-yoga-comes-to-australia-of-course/

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Hate To Break It To You But You Are The Reason Your Life Sucks So Much

If you think your life sucks, it probably does. If you think the world is out to get you, it probably is. If you think you deserve more, you probably do.

The only thing in the world holding you back from achieving greatness is in fact you.

If you think the world is out to get you its because you have a shit attitude towards life youre looking at everything the wrong way. Youre using the negatives to fuel you instead of the positives. Youre letting the negatives control your mind and in turn youre allowing them control of your life. Youre letting the bad things win.

You will never amount to any form of greatness if you spend your life working some boring desk job that just drains you of your energy because youre too lazy to get out and search for something more fulfillingthat is no ones fault but your own.

You will never travel the world and see Paris if you keep making excuses for why you cant go. Just buy the plane ticket, pack a bag and go. Let the world shape you and open your eyes. Let it challenge you and frustrate the hell out of you. Struggle with language barriers and get lost. Surrender the control you posses in every day life and just go.

You will never lose weight if you dont change your eating habits. You will never improve your health if you dont eat more vegetables. You will never get smarter or broaden your horizons if youre unwilling to learn from others and read.

You will never be happy if youre constantly looking at the negatives. You will never reach happiness in your life if youre constantly surrounding yourself by people and things that drain you.

You are the reason you are unhappy, you are the reason youre stuck in a rut and your relationships are poor and you’re constantly criticizing others and looking for more. Thats all on you.

Theres no way to sugar coat it. You are your own worst enemy; you are the only one who is standing in the way of your goals and your success.

Life doesnt owe you or anyone else anything, so dont expect it to. Dont expect a million dollars to show up at your door, dont expect to wake up with a rocking body, dont expect to get your dream job if you dont ever put work into it.

If you want something you have to work hard for it. Not a half-assed hard either, I mean you need to work your ass off. You need to make sacrifices and push through even when things get messyand complicated. You need to keep going when everything in you is telling you to give up because thats the only way youll ever amount to anything great.

If you think youre life sucks it probably does, its just like the saying, he who says he cant and he who says he can are both usually right.

Dont stand in the way of your own life, dont give up when things get hard because quitting will never get you anywhere. Instead work harder and work smarter.

Believe in yourself when no one else does so you can look back and say, I told you so.

No one will believe you can do it until you do, so you have to want your own dreams. Others can want your dreams for you but youre the only one who can make them happen and youre the only one who can succeed or fail in reaching them.

Stop doing things that dont fulfill you, stop blaming others for your problems and stop thinking life owes you something because it doesnt. If you want your life to get better than start living like it. Start doing something positive in the right direction and dont give up until you get there, then keep going.

Read more: http://thoughtcatalog.com/becca-martin/2016/12/hate-to-break-it-to-you-but-you-are-the-reason-your-life-sucks-so-much/

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Simon Cowell comes through where Britain’s NHS does not

Just as the case of Charlie Gard drifts out of headlines and his family attempts to find peace after their long battle both with the infants condition and Englands nationalized health service, another somewhat prominent example has gained some attention and it involves none other than famous star searcher and producer Simon Cowell (from “American Idol,” “X Factor” and “Britains Got Talent”).

Enter 15-year-old Julia Carlile, who appeared on Cowells show “Britains Got Talent” along with her interpretive dance group Just Us (renamed MerseyGirls). During on-air introductions shortly before their first performance, Carlile revealed she was born with and suffers from spinal scoliosis (a condition that causes the spine to curve and the body to contort).

She also stated that she was going to need corrective surgery shortly after the performances on the show and the result of such surgery in England would mean her dancing days would be over. Her condition was so severe that her surgery would need to be performed before the end of the year because her spine was crushing into her lung. The surgical option offered through NHS involved fusing metal rods to her spinal column which would have severely limited her bodys natural movements and have a recovery time of up to six months or more.

Cowell and the judges were so impressed by Carliles attitude and her groups performance (to Rachel Plattens “Fight Song”) which worked Carliles scoliosis into the performance, that co-judge Alesha Dixon awarded them the rare Golden Buzzer  which meant the group advances through preliminary competition. The group promised to give Julia the reward money (£250k) for her surgery if they won. They went on to finish 9th for the show. But that wasnt the end of the story for Cowell and Carlile.

But the question remains for kids like Carlile with such limited options and a health care system that is more concerned with panels and cost over care and innovation, the very same system the Democrat party wants to bring to this country.

She revealed to the Liverpool paper, The Echo, that Cowell himself had offered to cover her medical costs for her surgery. She told the paper that Cowell had approached her backstage during the shows finale and told her he would cover the £175,000 bill for her surgery (roughly $220,000).

But her surgery wasnt going to be performed through NHS and she wasnt going to receive fused rods to her spine. Carlile opted for a medical procedure only offered in the United States called vertebral body tethering, which involves the placement of screws, not rods, along her spinal cord. The procedure has a six-week recovery time and is reversible. Furthermore it wont limit Carliles body movements as severely, allowing her to continue to dance.

The procedure, which was performed on Carlile in New Jersey on July 23rd, is not offered through Englands NHS. Its also not offered in Cuba. Or Sweden, or Denmark or anywhere else where nationalized health care is lionized by the political left in this country.

Carlile kept fans and followers on Twitter updated on her status including posting a photo in a dance pose after her first operation. 9 days post op and i’m dancing already, it was a long bumpy road to recovery but i did it! Second op tomorrow #strong #fighter #scoliosis

She also posted an update after her second surgery just two days ago. Second surgery was a success! Now on the road to recovery. Thankyou @SimonCowell she tweeted.

Cowell picking up the tab is an act of generosity that shouldnt ever be forgotten among his famous hard demeanor. But the question still remains for kids like Carlile with such limited options and a health care system that is more concerned with panels and cost over care and innovation, the very same system the Democratic Party wants to bring to this country. And without a GOP health care plan to repeal or replace ObamaCare, they might very well succeed in the near future.

In the meantime, Carlile is expected to make a full recovery. Thats as good a reason as any to dance. 

Stephen L. Miller has written for Heat Street and National Review Online. Follow him on Twitter at @redsteeze.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2017/08/09/simon-cowell-comes-through-where-britains-nhs-does-not.html

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Amid 2020 buzz, Warren urges Democrats to reject centrist policies and move leftward

Atlanta (CNN)In the aftermath of last year’s election, the centrist old guard is out and progressives have won the battle for the soul of the Democratic Party, Elizabeth Warren declared Saturday.

“But, boy, we’ve inherited a hell of a challenge, haven’t we?” she said at an annual gathering here of thousands of progressive activists.
In a speech that outlined Warren’s vision for the party’s future, the Massachusetts senator offered a series of policy prescriptions, calling on Democrats to push for Medicare for all, debt-free college or technical school, universal pre-kindergarten, a $15-an-hour minimum wage and portable benefits.
    She dug in against President Donald Trump, saying Democrats would defend undocumented immigrants brought into the United States as children and that “we’re never, ever going to build your stupid wall.”
    And she celebrated the ascendant progressive wing’s takeover of the party — which has accelerated since November’s election.
    “We don’t have to tip-toe anymore. We don’t have to hedge our bets,” Warren said.
    Through her speech, Warren didn’t shy away from the prospect of a 2020 campaign for the presidency.
    “We’re going to fight to put more women in positions of power,” she said at one point, “from committee rooms to boardrooms to that really nice oval-shaped room at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.”
    The crowd responded with chants of “Warren 2020!” Warren paused and smiled, and then moved on without directly addressing the chants.
    Warren is already seen as one of Democrats’ foremost voices — along with Vermont independent Sen. Bernie Sanders — on progressives’ economic policies.
    So she used her speech in front of about 3,000 attendees at the progressive Netroots Nation conference Saturday to dive into issues of culture, which have split progressive and centrist Democrats since Hillary Clinton’s loss in November.
    In a shot at Bill Clinton-era Democratic policies, Warren said Democrats are not “going back to the days of welfare reform and the crime bill.”
    “We’re not going back to the days of being lukewarm on choice,” she said. “We’re not going back to the days when universal health care was something Democrats talked about on the campaign trail but were too chicken to fight for after they got elected.”
    Warren’s comments came at a crucial moment for the Democratic Party.
    Its base is energized by the fight against Trump, and Democrats were thrilled to see the GOP effort to repeal former President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act fail in late July.
    However, the party is also without a national leader, and its path forward on policy is not yet settled.
    For the first time in decades, Democrats reacted to a national election loss by moving leftward — rather than to the center. The party’s leaders have embraced confrontational tactics against Trump, while a growing list of its top prospects for the 2020 presidential race — including Warren — are embracing Sanders’ call for a “Medicare for all” single-payer health care system.
    But that shift has caused consternation in some quarters. Some leading Democrats — including Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu and Florida Rep. Stephanie Murphy — recently backed the launch of a group called “New Democracy,” aimed at moving Democrats toward positions that can win over moderates, independents and disaffected Republicans.
    Warren pointed to a New York Times op-ed by Mark Penn, a Hillary Clinton 2008 campaign strategist, who called for the party to abandon “identity politics.”
    Warren noted that those calls, after previous election losses, had prevailed.
    “This time, no one cared,” she said. “Big yawn.”
    “In the wake of the last election, I’ve heard people say we need to decide whether we’re the party of the white working class or the party of Black Lives Matter,” Warren said.
    “I say we can care about a dad who’s worried that his kid will have to move away from their factory town to find good work — and we can care about a mom who’s worried that her kid will get shot during a traffic stop,” she said. “The way I see it, those two parents have something deep down in common — the system is rigged against both of them — and against their kids.”
    Warren argued that many of the voters who abandoned Democrats and either fell into Trump’s camp or stayed home in November because they see a “rigged” system and “don’t feel like anyone in politics is doing anything to un-rig it, or it’s too broken to un-rig at all.”
    “So spare me the argument about whether we ought to be trying to bring back folks who voted for Donald Trump or trying to turn out folks who just didn’t vote,” she said. “Because we can’t do either of those things until we can show that things can change — and that we will fight to change them.”
    Warren broke out her biggest applause line mid-speech, saying Democrats don’t need permission from Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell — a reference to a clash between her and the Kentucky Republican earlier this year.
    “He would probably tell me to sit down and shut up,” Warren said. “Nevertheless, I would persist.”

    Read more: http://www.cnn.com/2017/08/12/politics/elizabeth-warren-netroots-nation/index.html

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    Type 2 diabetes rise in children ‘disturbing’ – BBC News

    Image copyright Getty Images

    More than 600 children and teenagers are being treated for type 2 diabetes in England and Wales, and the rise in cases is a “hugely disturbing trend”, local councils are warning.

    The figures come from a report by child health experts which found 110 more cases among under-19s in 2015-16 than two years previously.

    The youngest children affected are aged between five and nine.

    Council leaders said urgent action on childhood obesity was needed.

    The Local Government Association, which represents councils in England and Wales, added that government cuts to public health budgets had affected their ability to tackle the issue.


    Why are children getting type 2 diabetes?

    Being overweight is the biggest risk factor for developing type 2 diabetes, and three-quarters of these children were obese.

    With child obesity rates in England rising – but now by a smaller amount than they have been – it’s no surprise more children are being treated for the condition.

    In primary schools in England, one in 10 children in Reception and one in five children in year 6 were classified as obese in 2015-16.

    Type 2 diabetes in children is a serious condition which can lead to long-term health complications such as heart disease, kidney failure and blindness.


    Who are they?

    Children from Asian and black ethnic backgrounds were particularly affected, and children who lived in deprived areas were more likely to have type 2.

    There were twice as many girls than boys with the condition and most of the cases were among 15-19 year olds.

    Across all children and teenagers, numbers are on the rise – from 507 cases in 2013-14 and 543 in 2014-15 to the current tally of 621.

    But there could be more who are undiagnosed, the report said – these are only the ones being treated by paediatric specialists around the country.


    What should parents do?

    Parents can make an appointment with their family GP if they are concerned about their child’s weight.

    They can then be referred to a paediatrician, weight loss services or a dietician, depending on what is available in the area.

    When children are diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, the whole family will normally be involved in encouraging more physical exercise and a healthier diet, which are crucial to managing the condition.

    Because type 2 diabetes can be more aggressive in children than in adults, it is important to manage the condition carefully in order to prevent any health problems occurring.


    What do experts say?

    Children’s doctors, from the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, say type 2 diabetes is preventable in most cases and more action is need to reverse the trend.

    Dr Justin Warner, from RCPCH, said the sugar tax was “a positive step” towards reducing sugar in diets, but the government should be doing more to ban junk food adverts on TV targeted at children.

    Diabetes UK said there should be moves to reduce the sugar and saturated fat content in food.

    Libby Dowling, senior clinical adviser at the charity, said: “We need to make it as easy as possible for children and their families to lead healthy lives and reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes and its serious complications.”


    What is the government’s plan?

    It published a childhood obesity plan a year ago, which included measures asking the food and drink industry to cut 5% of the sugar in products popular with children, with a target of 20% over four years.

    A Department of Health spokeswoman said this was already delivering results.

    The plan also called on primary schools to deliver at least 30 minutes of physical activity a day and to help parents and carers ensure children got the same amount at home.

    But local councils in England, which now fund public health, want an increased budget to tackle the problem.

    They say more needs to be done to reach out to black and other minority ethnic groups, where a disproportionately high number of children and teenagers have type 2 diabetes.

    Read more: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-40900269

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    Study finds 1 in 8 Americans struggles with alcohol abuse

    (CNN)Americans are drinking more. A lot more. According to a new study published in JAMA Psychiatry, an estimated one out of every eight Americans struggles with an alcohol disorder.

    The study tracked drinking patterns among 40,000 people between the years of 2002 and 2003, and then again from 2012 to 2013 to create a long-term picture of their habits. The results are chilling, especially in light of other substance abuse crises plaguing the country.

    Women, minorities, older people among most affected

      Overall, alcohol use disorders rose by almost 50%, affecting a projected 8.5% of the population during the first research period, and 12.7% during the second. That’s almost 30 million Americans actively struggling with alcohol abuse.
      The numbers are even more grim for certain groups. According to the research, alcohol use disorders have almost doubled (92.8%) among the African American population, and increased nearly 84% among women.
      However, the group that saw the highest increase in alcohol abuse disorders actually wasn’t women or minorities. It was senior citizens. Individuals 65 and older saw a staggering 106.7% increase in alcohol use disorders from 2002/2003 to 2012/2013. For 45- to 65-year-olds, that increase was also high at 81.5%.

      For the JAMA Psychiatry study, researchers used the DSM-IVdefinition laid out by the American Psychiatric Association in 1994. This definition combines factors of alcohol abuse and alcohol dependence like:

      • Drinking interfering with home, family, or job responsibilities
      • Drinking increasing chances of danger or injury
      • Withdrawal symptoms when coming down from intoxication
      • An inability to stop drinking

      Of 11 criteria given, the presence of two or more indicates an alcohol use disorder. Six or more indicates a severe alcohol use disorder.

      It’s not just alcohol abuse

      The study didn’t just track alcohol abuse. It also tracked other patterns like “high risk” drinking, which the study defines as four or more drinks a day for women and five for men, plus a day that exceeds those limits at least once a week.
      “High risk” drinking has increased on pace with alcohol abuse, swelling from 9.7 percent of the population in 2002-2003 to 13.7 percent of the population in 2012-2013.

      A chilling echo

      The study was conducted by researchers from the National Institute on Alcohol and Alcoholism, the New York State Psychiatric Institute and Columbia University, and relied on rigorously controlled self-reporting of drinking habits. While there was no clear reason as to the increases, researchers claimed it constitutes a “public health crisis” on par with the current national opioid crisis.

        It’s ‘chemical warfare’ on our children

      “Most important, the findings…highlight the urgency of educating the public, policymakers, and health care professionals about high-risk drinking and [alcohol use disorders], destigmatizing these conditions and encouraging those who cannot reduce their alcohol consumption on their own..to seek treatment,” the study posits.
      The findings come as President Trump said the ongoing opioid crisis is a national public health emergency. Last week a White House panel, stating that 142 Americans die from drug overdoses every day, urged President Trump to make such a declaration.
      Dr. Marc Schuckit, a professor of psychiatry at the University of California, San Diego, wrote an editorial published with the new study and said the results are an extension of the same crisis.
      “[This study] reminds us that the chilling increases in opioid-related deaths reflect a broader issue regarding additional substance-related problems,” he wrote.
      The Distilled Spirits Council, the trade association of producers and marketers of distilled spirits, issued a response to the study, noting that an annual nationwide survey of about 70,000 people ages 12 and older showed a decline in alcohol use disorders in 2015. That year, the survey found, about 15.7 million people had an alcohol use disorder in the past year, and 7.7million people had an illicit drug use disorder.
      “While any amount of alcohol abuse is too much, the claims published in JAMA Psychiatry do not comport with findings of the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, the federal government’s leading survey that tracks substance use disorders,” Sam Zakhari, the Distilled Spirits Council senior vice president of science, said in a statement.”The NSDUH shows a decline in alcohol use disorders among all age groups.”

      Read more: http://www.cnn.com/2017/08/10/health/drinking-alcoholism-study-trnd/index.html