Food dyes linked to attention and activity problems in children

"Most consumers have no idea that something that is allowed in the food supply by the FDA could trigger adverse behaviors."

Synthetic dyes used as colorants in many common foods and drinks can negatively affect attention and activity in children, according to a comprehensive review of existing evidence published this month by the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA).

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Credit: Buddy Buddy Indoor Natural

As legal cannabis spreads, growers go organic — and beyond

On a noisy, littered block in southeast San Francisco lined end-to-end with mismatched warehouses, Chris Lu grows organic cannabis for discerning customers in California's legal market.

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Inequality of noise exposures: A portrait of the United States.

Noise pollution has been associated with adverse cardiovascular and neurological outcomes.1 It is also unevenly distributed across cities and landscapes and—like many environmental hazards—tends to disproportionately affect lower-income and nonwhite individuals.2 The authors of a new study in Environmental Health Perspectives provide an initial assessment of socioeconomic inequality in environmental noise exposures across the contiguous United States.2

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Phytoestrogens in soy infant formula: Association with DNA methylation in girls has unknown implications.

For years, parents have contended with conflicting reports1,2,3,4,5 in the media and blogosphere on the safety of soy infant formula. Soybeans contain phytoestrogens, which under some conditions mimic or interfere with the estrogens within the human body.6 However, the National Toxicology Program concluded in 2009, based on the research to that point, that exposures to phytoestrogens in soy formula are of “minimal concern.”7 Research in the field continues apace, with a new study providing evidence of an association between soy formula consumption and differences in gene methylation in baby girls—although any health implications remain unknown.8

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Exploring chemical transport through food: A proposal for a comprehensive approach to predict exposures.

Nate Seltenrich covers science and the environment from Petaluma, CA. His work has appeared in High Country News, Sierra, Yale Environment 360, Earth Island Journal, and other regional and national publications.

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Nicolas Longchamps/flickr

Montreal’s strategy for hot days: Evaluating the effectiveness of one city’s heat action plan.

Nate Seltenrich covers science and the environment from Petaluma, CA. His work has appeared in High Country News, Sierra, Yale Environment 360, Earth Island Journal, and other regional and national publications.

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Pollution’s mental toll: How air, water and climate pollution shape our mental health

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Analysis: 7 things the White House should do to limit PFAS pollution

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