Paris, Jul 21 (AP/UNB) — Swedish teen climate change activist Greta Thunberg has received the first Freedom Prize awarded by France's Normandy region, which last month commemorated the 75th D-Day anniversary.
Thunberg, 16, received the award in Caen on Sunday, posing alongside D-Day veterans Charles Norman Shay and Léon Gautier.
Thunberg said that "I think the least we can do to honor them is to stop destroying that same world that Charles, Leon and their friends and colleagues fought so hard to save."
She sent out a warning that "we are currently on track for a world that could displace billions of people from their homes, taking away even the most basic living conditions ... making areas of the world uninhabitable for parts of the year." But she added, "We can still fix this."
St. Augustine, Jul 21 (AP/UN) — Authorities have arrested a woman in Florida who they say tried to attack another woman with a knife when she was denied a slice of pizza.
The St. Augustine Record reports 22-year-old De’Erica Cooks is accused of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon without intent to kill.
The St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office said Cooks became angry after another woman denied her a pizza slice when she asked for one. An offense report says Cooks told the woman “I’m going to cut you” with a steak knife in her hand, and then tried to attack her. Deputies say a man in the house was able to take the knife away from Cooks.
Cooks told investigators she did not remember much. She remained in jail Friday with no attorneys listed in records.
Sydney, July 19 (Xinhua/UNB) -- Tooth decay and other oral diseases present a major global public health crisis with sugar as the main culprit, according to a Series on oral health published in The Lancet medical journal on Friday.
The Series brought together 13 experts from 10 different countries to explore why oral diseases have persisted globally over the last three decades, despite scientific advancements in the field.
Currently, oral diseases are among the most common in the world, affecting an estimated 3.5 billion people, yet oral health has been largely ignored by the global health community, the experts said.
Co-author, Professor Marco A Peres from Australia's Griffith university joined his colleagues in calling for radically improved global dental care, increased regulation of the sugar industry and more transparency of scientific studies which may be falling victim to conflicts of interest.
"I think that there is a global health challenge regarding oral disease," Peres told Xinhua.
"It's a big challenge and we recognize in the papers that the traditional approach to managing dental disease probably fails."
Peres and his colleagues identify three main determinants, being sugar, tobacco and alcohol, among which sugar is the single greatest contributor to deteriorating oral health worldwide.
While there have been some countries which have adopted a tax on sugar products with promising results, according to Peres in other countries such as Australia, powerful interest groups are exerting their influence to avoid the measure.
"Many public health, academic and consumer groups support a tax on sugar, but political support is limited and there is a strong lobby against the implementation of a sugar tax led by sugary drinks companies," he said.
The Series authors also suggest that oral health be less removed from general health, with dentistry rarely being thought of as a mainstream part of healthcare policy, despite its intrinsic link to health and wellbeing.
"A clear need exists for broader accessibility and integration of dental services into healthcare systems, especially primary care, and for oral health to have more prominence within universal health coverage commitments," said Dr. Jocalyn Clark, an executive editor at The Lancet.
"Everyone who cares about global health should advocate to end the neglect of oral health."
Washington, July 19 (Xinhua/UNB) -- Learning new things can make older people's brains 30 years younger in just six weeks, according to a new research from University of California Riverside (UCR).
Scientists have discovered that taking up several new tasks at the same time boosts mental power and protects people against Alzheimer's disease.
These skills range from studying new languages, using an iPad, writing music to painting.
UCR psychologist Rachel Wu says one important way of staving off cognitive decline is learning new skills as a child would.
She encouraged elder people to be a sponge, which means to seek new skills to learn, maintain motivation as fuel, rely on encouraging mentors to guide you, thrive in an environment where the bar is set high.
Building on lifelong learning research, previous studies have demonstrated the cognitive gains of older people learning new skills. But these skills were learned one at a time, or sequentially.
For Wu's studies, the researchers asked adults aged 58-86 to simultaneously take three to five classes for three months, about 15 hours per week. The course workload is similar to an undergraduate's.
After just six weeks, participants increased their cognitive abilities to levels similar to those of middle-aged adults, 30 years younger. Control group members, who did not take classes, showed no change in their performance.
"The participants in the intervention bridged a 30-year difference in cognitive abilities after just six weeks and maintained these abilities while learning multiple new skills," Wu said.
"The studies provide evidence that intense learning experiences akin to those faced by younger populations are possible in older populations, and may facilitate gains in cognitive abilities," she added.
Worldwide, around 50 million people have dementia, and Alzheimer's disease is the most common form that may contribute to 60 percent to 70 percent of the cases, according to the World Health Organization.
No treatment is currently available to cure dementia or to alter its progressive course.