There are people in this country eating too much red meat. They should cut back. There are people eating too many carbs. They should cut back on those. There are also people eating too much fat, and the same advice applies to them, too.
What’s getting harder to justify, though, is a focus on any one nutrient as a culprit for everyone.
As with other bad guys in the food wars, the warnings against red meat are louder and more forceful than they need to be.
Americans are more overweight and obese than they pretty much have ever been. There’s also no question that we are eating more meat than in previous eras. But we’ve actually been reducing our red meat consumption for the last decade or so. This hasn’t led to a huge decrease in obesity rates or to arguments from experts that it is the reason for fewer deaths from cardiovascular disease.
Aaron E. Carroll, New York Times, March 30, 2015
Scientists have long been unable to find exoplanets—planets outside the solar system—beyond the confines of the Milky Way. After all, our galaxy is a warped disc about a hundred thousand light-years across and a thousand light-years thick, so it’s incredibly difficult to see beyond that. But now, a new study is saying there could be extragalactic exoplanets.
The study, published February 2 in The Astrophysical Journal Letters, gives the first evidence that more than a trillion exoplanets could exist beyond the Milky Way.
Beyond Our Galaxy
Using information from NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory and a planet detection technique called microlensing to study a distant quasar galaxy , scientists at the University of Oklahoma found evidence that there are approximately 2,000 extragalactic planets for every one star beyond the Milky Way. Some of these exoplanets are as (relatively) small as the moon, while others are as massive as Jupiter. Unlike Earth, most of the exoplanets are not tightly bound to stars, so they’re actually wandering through space or loosely orbiting between stars.
Elaina Zachos, National Geographic, February 5, 2018
The tree lobster, one of the rarest insects on Earth, has lived a rather twisted life story.
Scientifically known as Dryococelus australis, this six-inch-long stick bug with a lobster-esque exoskeleton once occupied Lord Howe Island in the Tasman Sea, between Australia and New Zealand.
In 1918, rats escaping a capsized steamship swam ashore. The tree lobsters became rat chow. Two years later, all tree lobsters seemed to have vanished, and by 1960 they were declared extinct.
But in the latest chapter for what has also been called the Lord Howe stick insect, scientists compared the genomes of living stick bugs from a small island nearby to those of museum specimens, revealing that they are indeed the same species.
Joanna Klein, New York Times, October 6, 2017
SHIPS spewing soot into the pristine ocean air are causing extra lightning strikes along busy maritime routes. It is a bizarre example of how human activities can change the weather.
When Joel Thornton at the University of Washington in Seattle and his colleagues looked at records of lightning strikes between 2005 and 2016 from the World Wide Lightning Location Network, they noticed there were significantly more strikes in certain regions of the east Indian Ocean and the South China Sea, compared with the surrounding areas. Unusually, they occurred along two straight lines in the open ocean, which coincided with two of the busiest shipping lanes in the world. Along these paths there were twice as many lightning strikes as in nearby areas.
Lakshmi Supriya, New Scientist, September 19, 2017