Quit line calls up as labels debut
Graphic new cigarette warning labels may already be having the desired effect: Calls to a national smoker's quit line more than doubled the day they hit the media. The warning labels won't appear on cigarettes until next year but were unveiled to the media last week. Calls to the national 1-800-QUIT-NOW smoking cessation line surpassed 4,800 that Tuesday and 3,200 the next day. A typical Tuesday or Wednesday in June sees about 2,000 calls. The new labels replace the traditional small, white "Surgeon General's Warning" text strips with graphic photograph warnings that cover the entire top half of each cigarette pack. Versions of the new labels include depictions of diseased lungs and rotting teeth and gums. They also carry the 1-800-QUIT-NOW number, which the old labels did not.
Superbugs linked to poultry
Bacteria on raw poultry meat in the Netherlands may be a source of "superbugs" in people, according to a study that suggests the use of antibiotics in food animals is causing lifesaving drugs to lose their potency. Multidrug-resistant bacteria were found in 80 percent of raw chicken bought from grocery stores in the southern Netherlands. When the researchers compared the germs with specimens collected from hospital patients, they found the predominant resistance genes were identical. The findings were reported in the July edition of the journal Emerging Infectious Diseases and indicate drug-resistant bacteria in food are leading to harder-to-treat infections in people. While human use of antibiotics in the Netherlands is among the lowest in Europe, the country is one of the region's biggest users of the medicines in farm animals, the researchers noted.
Champ's July 4 calories: 20,000
Hot dog eating champion Joey Chestnut estimates he eats about 20,000 calories in one shot at food competitions, but he says his doctor doesn't mind. "I'm really not consuming that many more calories than most people," the four-time Nathan's Famous International Hot Dog Eating Contest champion said Friday at an appearance ahead of the yearly Fourth of July eat-off in New York. "I run. I really try to stay healthy. I count my calories rigorously when I'm not doing the contests." The San Jose, Calif., resident said his doctor has told him not to worry as long as he doesn't gain weight and doesn't develop diabetes. Chestnut is 27 years old, 6'1" and weighs 218 pounds. Active men of his age, weight and height should eat 3,200 calories a day, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.