Online 24/7+Friendly Toll Free Service
6-6 Pacific/9-9 Eastern (Monday-Friday)


  • Why is Healthy and Safe Swimming Week Important?

    The week before Memorial Day (May 20–26, 2019) is Healthy and Safe Swimming Week. The goal of this awareness week is to maximize the health benefits of swimming by minimizing the risk of illness and injury. Just 2.5 hours of physical activity every week, including water-based physical activity, can benefit everyone’s health. Each of us plays a role in preventing illnesses and injuries linked to the water we swim, play, relax in, and share. Swimming is a fun, healthy way to stay physically active and spend quality time with family and friends. Healthy and Safe Swimming Week highlights the roles that swimmers, parents of young swimmers, aquatics and beach staff, residential pool owners, and public health officials play in preventing disease outbreaks, drowning, and pool chemical injuries.

    Why Is Healthy and Safe Swimming Week Important?

    Injuries caused by mishandling pool chemicals:
    Pool chemicals are added to maintain water quality (for example, to kill germs). Each year, however, mishandling pool chemicals when treating public or residential/backyard pools, hot tubs/spas, and water playgrounds leads to 3,000–5,000 visits to U.S. emergency departments.
    For more info, visit CDCs Pool Chemical Info.

    Illnesses caused by the germs in pools, hot tubs/spas, and water playgrounds:
    During 2000–2014, nearly 500 outbreaks were linked to pools, hot tubs/spas, and water playgrounds. Most of the outbreaks were caused by germs Cryptosporidium (or “Crypto”), Legionella, or Pseudomonas. Healthy swimming is not just about the steps pool operators and pool inspectors take—so let’s all do our part to help keep ourselves, our families, and our friends healthy.
    For more info, visit CDCs Healthy Swimming Info.

    Each day, two children younger than 14 years old die from drowning. Drowning is a leading cause of death for children 1–4 years old. we want to remind you about drowning prevention. Drowning is the leading cause of accidental injury or death in children under the age of 5. Drowning can be quick and silent. It's a fallacy that the act of drowning is accompanies by screams or splashing, making proactive prevention crucial. To help prevent drownings, please remember to have active adult supervision, never swim alone, make sure your pool is fenced with self-closing/latching gates, and most of all keep a Pool / Lifeguard First Aid Kit on hand.
    For more info, visit CDCs Water Injuries Info.

    Harmful algal blooms:
    Algae can grow in warm, nutrient-rich fresh- and marine water. An abundant growth of algae that harms people or animals is referred to as a harmful algal bloom (HAB). HABs in fresh- and marine water can produce toxins that cause a variety of symptoms including skin irritation, coughing, sneezing, diarrhea, stomach pain, numbness, and dizziness. Symptoms vary depending on the type of HAB toxin and the type of exposure, such as skin contact, ingestion by eating food or drinking water contaminated with HAB toxins, or breathing in tiny droplets or mist contaminated with HAB toxins.
    For more info, visit CDCs HAB Toxin Info

    Naegleria fowleri “the brain-eating ameba”:
    Naegleria fowleri is a microscopic ameba (a singlecelled living organism) that is commonly found in warm freshwater such as in lakes, rivers, and hot springs. If water containing the ameba goes up the nose forcefully, the ameba can invade and cause a rare and devastating infection of the brain called primary amebic meningoencephalitis (PAM).
    For more info, visit CDCs Naegleria Info

  • FDA Warning: Aspirin-Containing Antacid Medicines Can Cause Bleeding

    StomachDrugs containing an antacid and aspirin, and used to treat heartburn, sour stomach, acid indigestion, or upset stomach, can cause serious bleeding, FDA warns.

    Read the Drug Facts label to see if the product you’re using for these conditions has aspirin, especially if you have a risk factor for bleeding.

    The next time you reach for an over-the-counter (OTC) product to treat your upset stomach or heartburn, consider whether you should use one of the many antacids that don’t have aspirin.

    Why? Aspirin-containing medicines to treat heartburn, sour stomach, acid indigestion, or upset stomach can cause stomach or intestinal bleeding, especially in some people, warns the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

    Cases of bleeding are rare. In 2009, FDA issued a warning about serious stomach bleeding risk with aspirin and other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Despite that warning, when FDA reviewed its Adverse Event Reporting System database, it found eight new cases of serious bleeding caused by aspirin-containing antacid products since that 2009 warning. Some of those patients required a blood transfusion.

    Antacids Antacids (aka anti-acids) typically come in two forms - those that absorb or neutralize acids, and those that coat and protect against the acidic discomfort. First Aid Store offers both types of Antacid Remedies, with Pepto Bismol type pink bismuth, and Tums or Maalox type Antacid Tablets available in dispenser boxes and single dose packets. Antacids
    Antacids (aka anti-acids) typically come in two forms - those that absorb or neutralize acids, and those that coat and protect against the acidic discomfort. First Aid Store offers both types of Antacid Remedies, with Pepto Bismol type pink bismuth, and Tums or Maalox type Antacid Tablets available in dispenser boxes and single dose packets.

    “Take a close look at the Drug Facts label, and if the product has aspirin, consider choosing something else for your stomach symptoms,” says Karen Murry Mahoney, MD, Deputy Director of the Division of Nonprescription Drug Products at FDA. “Unless people read the Drug Facts label when they’re looking for stomach symptom relief, they might not even think about the possibility that a stomach medicine could contain aspirin.”

    Mahoney adds: “Today we’re focusing on bleeding risk specifically with antacid-aspirin products used to treat upset stomach or heartburn. We’re not telling people to stop taking aspirin altogether.”

    How will you know what OTC medicine to take to get relief from indigestion? Again, it’s important to read the Drug Facts label. It will tell you if the product contains aspirin, and it lists the risk factors for bleeding. If the medicine has aspirin, consider looking for something else. There are plenty of stomach medicines that don’t contain aspirin.

    pdf icon small Download PDF (233 K)

    On this Subject:


  • Climate Change

    climate-change-2“The Impacts of Climate Change on Human Health in the United States: A Scientific Assessment” is a report by the U.S. Global Change Research Program revealing new assessments of the growing public health threat of climate change.

    Released on April 4, 2016, the report identified the many ways in which climate change is already threatening the health of all Americans and the significant public health challenges it is expected to create.

    Some health threats covered by the report were identified as increases in human risk related to temperature-related death and illness air quality impacts; extreme events such as droughts, floods, and wildfires; vector-borne disease; water-related illnesses; food safety, nutrition, and distribution; and mental health and well-being. One key feature of the report was the identification of individuals and groups, including workers, most likely to experience the effects of climate change on their health and well-being.

    NIOSH contributed to the development of the report as part of a coordinated effort by more than 100 experts from eight federal agencies with different but complementary roles under this mandate. The impacts that climate change will have on workers were highlighted throughout the report and in a special section describing vulnerable occupational groups.

    Climate Change

  • Will you live longer if you are White than if you are Black?

    We recently shared how ethnicity has bearing on lifesaving in our post Racism in Lifesaving. This earlier post considered the likelihood of a bystander being trained and willing to perform CPR in ethnic and lower income neighborhoods versus predominately white higher income neighborhoods.

    We also took a look at how CPR Manikin Manufacturers address racial differences with their CPR Dummy skin tones - as well as the ripple effect this has caused in the way CPR Instructors address the public, differentiating their students by the color of their skin.

    National Geographic made a provocative move in May on this topic, with their controversial cover Will this Baby Live to be 120?, where they sent out (purportedly randomly) four versions of the issue with photos of 4 different ethnic baby images on the cover.

    But the bottom line is: If you are White, you'll live longer than if you are Black. While life expectancy rates are increasing at a higher rate for the Black Population in the US than for the White Population, Blacks started at a much shorter expected life span, and the average age of Death is still much younger than for Whites.

    The trend in U.S. life expectancy since 1900 has been one of gradual improvement. In 2010 life expectancy at birth was 78.7 years, an increase of 11% since 1970. For the white population, life expectancy increased 10%, and for the black population the increase was 17%. Nevertheless, differences in life expectancy by race have been observed and have persisted at least since official estimates have been recorded. Measuring health disparities, including life expectancy at birth, is part of the Healthy People 2020 recommendations. These disparities can be examined by looking at the leading causes of death and how these causes influence life expectancy at birth. In this report, differences in the leading causes of death among black and white populations are examined to determine which causes contributed to the difference in life expectancy between the black and white populations in 2010.

    How Did Cause of Death Contribute to Racial Differences in Life Expectancy in the United States in 2010?May-Babies

    It's not just genetics that determine lifespan, but also lifestyle, with issues like diet and exercise, but overall issues like sickle cell anemia, cholesterol-related health issues and other like matters still have an impact on death rates in the US, and more funding has gone to research and improvement of health care and treatment for illness that affect all races or predominantly Whites than those that focus on Blacks. Read more fascinating information about causes of Death and Life Expectancy in the CDC's How Did Cause of Death Contribute to Racial Differences in Life Expectancy in the United States in 2010? .

  • Government, Healthcare and Insurance

    How do new laws affect you, your health and your coverage?

    • HealthcareInsurancePeople with health insurance get more preventive care and report better physical and mental health.
    • Beginning October 1, Americans will have a new way to find affordable health coverage—including many free preventive services—on the new Health Insurance Marketplace.


    Americans can visit the new website or call 1-800-318-2596 now to ask questions and prepare to enroll.

  • Only half of U.S. youth meet physical activity standards & Few consume recommended daily amounts of fruits and vegetables

    Only half of U.S. youth meet physical activity standards, NIH study shows

    Few consume recommended daily amounts of fruits and vegetables. (Also see The US government shows how to eat your favorite foods to be healthy!)

    Only about half of U.S. adolescents are physically active five or more days of the week, and fewer than 1 in 3 eat fruits and vegetables daily, according to researchers at the National Institutes of Health.

    In a survey of youth in 39 states, NIH researchers questioned nearly 10,000 students between 11 and 16 years old about their activity levels and eating habits. They also asked the students to describe their emotional health, body image, and general satisfaction with life.

    Chart displaying physical activity of US youth

    NIH researchers charted patterns of physical activity, screen time and diet after surveying 10,000 students between 11 and 16 years old. The researchers classified these patterns as typical, unhealthful and healthful.

    “The students showed a surprising variability in eating patterns,” said lead author Ronald J. Iannotti, Ph.D., of the Prevention Research Branch of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), the NIH Institute in which the study was conducted. “But most — about 74 percent — did not have a healthy pattern.”

    Dr. Iannotti conducted the research with NICHD colleague Jing Wang, Ph.D. In addition to NICHD, funding also was provided by the Maternal and Child Health Bureau of the Health Resources and Services Administration.

    Their findings appear in the Journal of Adolescent Health.

    The researchers found that the adolescents’ diet and activity habits could be classified into three general categories. They described the first group as unhealthful. This group accounted for 26 percent of participants. The second group, classified as healthful, accounted for 27 percent. Because it was the largest group — including 47 percent of participants — the researchers classified the third group as typical.

    The researchers surveyed participants about: their daily amount of physical activity, the amount of time they spent in front of a computer screen or other electronic screen, and the amount of healthy and unhealthy foods they consumed. Other questions sought information on symptoms of depression and self-satisfaction with their bodies.

    The analysis of the survey results showed that the typical youth were least likely to exercise five or more days each week or to eat fruits and vegetables at least once a day. They were more likely to spend time watching television, playing video games or on a computer than the healthful group, and less likely to do so than the unhealthful group. They infrequently ate fruits and vegetables but also infrequently ate sweets, chips or fries, or had soft drinks. Youth in this group were more likely than youth in the other two groups to be overweight or obese and to be dissatisfied with the appearance of their bodies.

    The unhealthful group consumed the most sweets, chips, french fries, and soft drinks. They also were more likely than the other groups to report watching TV, playing video games and using a computer more than two hours a day. Despite the caloric foods they consumed, youth in the unhealthful group were more likely to be underweight and to report needing to put on weight. Youth in this group also were more likely to report symptoms of depression and of poor physical health, such as backaches, stomachaches, headaches or feeling dizzy.

    Nearly 65 percent of students in the group that the researchers termed healthful reported exercising five or more days per week — the highest rate of the three groups. These students were least likely to spend time in front of a screen and were most likely to report eating fruits and vegetables at least once a day. Students in this group also were least likely to consume sweets, soft drinks, chips and French fries. They reported the lowest rates of depressive symptoms and the highest life satisfaction ratings.

    All three groups could stand to improve their health habits, Dr. Iannotti said, whether walking or biking between home and school or eating more fresh produce each day.

    According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans External Web Site Policy, children and adolescents should get one hour or more of moderate or vigorous aerobic physical activity a day, including vigorous intensity physical activity at least three days a week.

    About the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD): The NICHD sponsors research on development, before and after birth; maternal, child, and family health; reproductive biology and population issues; and medical rehabilitation. For more information, visit the Institute’s website at

    About the National Institutes of Health (NIH): NIH, the nation's medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit

  • Walking After Meals....

    A new study shows the benefits of walking for 15 minutes after every meal.

    Read about walking for health Read about walking for health @ USA Today


    • Walking after every meal is as beneficial for blood sugar as a 45-minute walk.
    • Taking a 15-minute walk after dinner helps control post-meal blood sugar.
    • The timing of exercise is important, study shows if you're at risk for developing type 2 diabetes, then take a 15-minute walk after every meal.

    A study, out today, shows that moderately-paced walks after meals work as well at regulating overall blood sugar in adults with pre-diabetes as a 45-minute walk once a day.

    And there's an added benefit of walking after every meal, especially dinner: It helps lower post-meal blood sugar for three hours or more, the research found.

    Walking after a meal "really blunts the rise in blood sugar," says the study's lead author Loretta DiPietro, professor and chair of the department of exercise science at the George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services.

    "You eat a meal. You wait a half-hour and then you go for a 15-minute walk, and it has proven effective in controlling blood sugar levels, but you have to do it every day after every meal. This amount of walking is not a prescription for weight loss or cardiovascular fitness — it's a prescription for controlling blood sugar," she says.

    The Italians call the walk after dinner a passeggiata and know it aids in digestion, DiPietro says. "Now we know it also helps the clearance of blood sugar."

    Currently, almost 26 million children and adults (8.3% of the population) in the USA have diabetes, and about 79 million Americans have pre-diabetes. In diabetes, the body does not make enough of the hormone insulin, or it doesn't use it properly. Insulin helps glucose (sugar) get into cells, where it is used for energy. If there's an insulin problem, sugar builds up in the blood, damaging nerves and blood vessels.

    DiPietro and colleagues worked with 10 overweight, sedentary volunteers, who were an average age of 71. All had higher than normal blood sugar levels and were considered pre-diabetic, which means they were at risk for developing type 2 diabetes, the most common type.

    Each participant stayed in a metabolic chamber, a special room that helps researchers track the calories burned by the volunteers, for two days on three separate occasions.The first day on each occasion was considered a control day, and participants did no physical activity.

    On the second day, the participants did one of three things: They walked at an easy to moderate pace (about 3 mph) on a treadmill for 15 minutes — about a half hour after each meal.

    On the other days the participants either walked for 45 minutes at 10:30 a.m. or they walked the same amount of time at 4:30 p.m. Their blood sugar levels were measured continuously throughout the two-day period.

    The research, published in the June issue of Diabetes Care, shows that the timing of walks is important for providing health benefits, DiPietro says.

    Walking is beneficial because the muscle contractions "help to clear blood sugar," she says.

    After dinner is a good time to get up and walk with your partner, a neighbor or your dog, she says. If you can't go outside, then march in place for 15 minutes, she says.

    After lunch, many employees go and sit down for another four hours, but based on these findings, companies and businesses should make it easier for employees to go out and take a walk after lunch, says Tim Church, director of preventive medicine research at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge.

    John Anderson, president of medicine and science for the American Diabetes Association, says it makes sense that a short walk would lower post-meal blood sugar. "What we don't know is if it is going to make a big difference over time in people's progression from prediabetes to diabetes — any more than the standard exercise advice of walking 30 minutes a day five days a week."

    Other research shows that amount of exercise and a weight loss of 5% to 7% helps reduce the risk of developing the disease, Anderson says.

    DiPietro says the results of this study may also apply to pregnant women who are at risk for gestational diabetes, and the findings may also be helpful to people who aren't able to walk for 45 minutes at a time but are able to do 15 minutes.

    The study was sponsored by the National Institute on Aging, part of the National Institutes of Health.

    The government's exercise guidelines recommend that:

    • Adults get at least 2½ hours of moderate-intensity physical activity each week, such as brisk walking, or 1¼ hours of a vigorous-intensity activity, such as jogging or swimming laps, or a combination of the two types, to get the most health benefits from exercise. These aerobic activities should be done in at least 10-minute bouts.

    • To get even more health benefits, people should do five hours of moderate-intensity physical activity each week or 2½ hours of vigorous activity.

    • Adults should do muscle-strengthening (resistance) activities at a moderate- or high-intensity level for all major muscle groups two or more days a week. This should include exercises for the chest, back, shoulders, upper legs, hips, abdomen and lower legs. The exercises can be done with free weights or machines, resistance bands, calisthenics that use body weight for resistance (push-ups, pull-ups, sit-ups), or carrying heavy loads or doing heavy gardening such as digging or hoeing.

  • Restaurant Safety: What You Should Know

    father's day

     If you’re planning on dining out, keep these things in mind when choosing the right restaurant for you and your family.

    Food Safety Rules

    Restaurant First Aid Kits Our Restaurant First Aid Kits are designed to meet OSHA & ANSI guidelines for Commercial Kitchens, Catering & Foodservice. Equipped to handle the burns & other minor injuries common to restaurant workers and patrons.

    The food vendors in your community, like restaurants, delis, grocery stores, and others, must follow local food safety rules. These rules are set by your city, county, district, or state. Each community may have the same or slightly different food safety rules and requirements for food vendors. All food safety rules have similar requirements about

    • Safe source: Food or food ingredients come from a safe source.
    • Safe temperature: Food is held at the correct cold or hot holding temperatures.
    • Proper cooking: Food is cooked properly, especially foods such as meat, poultry, and pork.
    • Proper handling: Food is handled to prevent cross-contamination from the environment (for example, common work areas or common utensils).
    • Proper hand washing: Food handlers know how to prevent contamination, especially food handlers who may be sick with vomiting or diarrhea.


    One of the ways food safety rules protect the public’s health is through food vendor inspections. Each community’s rules may differ on

    • How often food vendor inspections are conducted.
    • The type of inspection form used.
    • The type of grading or scoring system used to rate the safety of food vendors.


    The system to rate food vendors may be a numerical score, a letter-grade score (A, B, C), or a pass/fail rating. These scores are usually shared with the public in some way, including

    • Food vendor publicly posts their full inspection reports, showing all violations and inspector notes as well as the rating.
    • Food vendor publicly posts only their rating and not the full inspection report.
    • Food safety regulatory agency posts food vendors’ full inspection reports along with the rating on the Internet.
    • Food safety regulatory agency posts only food vendors’ ratings on the Internet.

    Talk to your local food safety regulators to find out whether food vendors in your area must display inspection information and what information they must display. You can find the contact information for your local food safety regulators using the Directory of State and Local Officials website. If you can’t find a food vendor’s score or inspection report, ask the manager if you can see the most recent report.

    When speaking to your local food regulatory agency about the inspection report for a particular vendor, ask if they have had any recent food safety rule violations for

    • Unsafe food source.
    • Improper hot-holding or cold-holding of food.
    • Improperly cooked food.
    • Cross contamination.
    • Contamination by sick workers.

    Reporting Foodborne Illness

    Most people don’t report their illness. Public health officials need to know about illnesses that may be caused by food so foodborne outbreaks can be identified and stopped as quickly as possible.

    Report your illness to your local food safety regulator if you think a meal from a food vendor made you sick. It is especially important to report illnesses when more than one person gets sick after eating the same meal.

    For More Information


  • National Women’s Health Week

    What are you doing to recognize National Women's Health Week?
    Take simple steps every day to live a safe and healthy life.  

    It’s National Women’s Health Week, May 12-18, 2013.

    WomenBelow are new resources from the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS):

    Thanks for your interest in and support of women‘s health.

    This service is provided by the CDC/ATSDR Office of Women's Health. Email comments or suggestions to
    For more information about women’s health, visit

  • According to, more than 80% of both adults and adolescents in America don’t get the recommended minimum amount of weekly physical activity.

    Get Moving for a Longer Life

    It’s a shocking statistic: According to, more than 80% of both adults and adolescents in America don’t get the recommended minimum amount of weekly physical activity. And this lack of movement doesn’t just add to weight gain in the short-term, it also affects an individual’s life expectancy.

    While it certainly takes motivation to reverse this trend, you might be surprised to learn that it doesn’t take a lot of effort to improve your wellbeing. In fact, some recreational exercise is better than none! A recent study by PLOS Medicine found that leisure time physical activity adds years to your life, even if you only do the bare minimum.

    How much exercise?
    The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommends that adults ages 18-64 engage in aerobic exercise at moderate intensity for a total of 2.5 hours a week or vigorous intensity for 1.25 hours per week. Moderate intensity exercises include activities like brisk walking and strenuous yard work, and vigorous activities are those during which you can only say a few words without stopping for breath.

    Even if you don’t reach these minimums, any physical activity still improves your life expectancy. A small increase in your weekly leisure time physical activity can result in major health benefits, even if you’re overweight or obese. Plus, a more active lifestyle has other benefits, such as lowering your risk of heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, Type 2 diabetes, colon cancer, breast cancer, and depression.

    And for older adults, increased physical activity could mean fewer falls, which often lead to long hospital stays and further complications.

    Adding years to your life — and life to your years
    The PLOS Medicine study highlights which activities will help you live a longer, fuller life:

    • 75 minutes per week of brisk walking can add 1.8 years to your life.
    • 150 minutes per week of brisk walking can add 3.4-4.5 years to your life.
    • Being active with 150 minutes/week of moderate exercise and being at a normal weight adds as many as 7.2 years to life. This is compared to inactive, class II obese individuals with a BMI of 35 or over.
    • Being inactive but a normal weight resulted in an average of 3.5 fewer years of life, as compared with someone who is class I obese (30 BMI) but active.

    Improving your health starts by adding a little movement to your free-time activities. Enjoy walking in your neighborhood, biking, yard work, exercising with friends or your spouse, hiking, swimming — whatever it takes to get moving. Physical activity can make your life longer and more fun, too!


Items 1 to 10 of 14 total

  1. 1
  2. 2