One Toddler’s Life Changing Diagnosis

NEW YORK—It was 3:30 p.m. on a Friday last April when Angela Clark and her husband, Jim, drove to a MedExpress Urgent Care clinic near their hometown in Bellefonte, Pa. Their blond, bubbly 3-year-old daughter, Raelynn, known for dressing head-to-toe in pink, had been drinking a lot of water and peeing almost uncontrollably.

Photo courtesy of Angela Clark

The doctors tested her for a urinary tract infection, which came back negative. But the results showed that Raelynn had sugar in her urine.

So the Clarks drove quietly to Mount Nittany Medical Center in State College, Pa.

“Raelynn kept asking us for a drink of water in the car,” Angela said. “We had no idea what diagnosis was in front of us.”

Upon arrival at the emergency room, Raelynn had to pee again, so the nurses collected a urine sample.

“Then, the dreaded news came in,” said Angela.

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Is Chewing Gum Causing Cancer?

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services released a report a year ago stating that a widely used food preservative could cause cancer in humans yet the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), an agency within the health department, is still allowing it to be added to foods such as breakfast cereals, packaged snacks and chewing gum.

The preservative, Butylated Hydroxyanisole (BHA), is added to a number of commonly consumed packaged foods to prevent a change in color, flavor or texture. In a report released in October 2014, the Department of Health stated that BHA could be a carcinogen in humans, having caused cancer in experimental animals such as rats, mice and fish. The FDA, a subdivision of the health department, still lists BHA on its Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) Substances database, allowing food corporations to use the additive in foods.

Denise Young, vice president of corporate affairs for the popular candy manufacturer, Wrigley, said her company adds BHA to some of its chewing gum products to prevent oxidation.

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Street Vendors Demand End to Police Ticketing

NEW YORK – Street vendors and representatives of a non-profit organization protested Thursday outside the New York Police Department’s 34th Precinct in Washington Heights calling for an increase in available permits and demanding an end to police ticketing.

In a movement called “Lift the Caps,” organized by the group Street Vendor Project, protesters marched on 183rd Street and Broadway for vendors’ rights. Elise Goldin, senior organizer at the non-profit organization, said the city has put a limit on the number of available permits. Goldin said many of the street vendors present at the protest were put on waiting lists that could last 15 to 20 years. She said there are only 5,000 available permits in the city. Continue reading “Street Vendors Demand End to Police Ticketing”

White Coats, Gray Future


NEW YORK – Denisse Rojas Marquez said without an immigration plan that the Obama administration released three years ago, granting her temporary residential status in the United States, she would not be in medical school today.

Marquez was honored on Sept. 17 at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in the class of 2019’s White Coat Ceremony, a traditional welcoming event in which first-year medical students recite an oath and are given white doctor’s coats by notable members of the school’s faculty. Marquez and her fellow student, Jamil Reja, are the school’s first undocumented students ever to receive white coats. With uncertain futures, Marquez and Reja both say they hope to continue learning and eventually practicing medicine in the U.S. While their stories are unique – as not every undocumented person is able to receive higher education – Marquez and Reja said their upbringings are relatable for the estimated 11.3 million immigrants living in the United States without official citizenship.

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New Report Says Growing Asian Immigrant Population

While presidential candidate Donald Trump leads the Republican polls advocating for the construction of a wall between Mexico and the United States, a new Pew Research Center poll shows that Mexican immigration is actually decreasing while Asian immigration is growing more quickly.

The report shows that since 2007, the U.S. has seen more immigration from Asian countries such as China and India than it has seen from Latin America. By 2065, Asians will make up 16 percent of the population, according to Jeffrey Passel, a senior demographer at the Pew Research Center. While the Hispanic population is projected to still be larger than the Asian population in 2065, Asian immigration will continue to grow more quickly. Passel said Mexican immigration has been decreasing since 2007 while  Asian immigration has been increasing steadily over the last 40 years. Passel said he projects the two will intersect by 2065. Continue reading “New Report Says Growing Asian Immigrant Population”