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.
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.
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.
Reflecting upon the many Americans who die from drug overdoses, President Barack Obama used his weekly address Thursday to encourage people to help reduce the number of prescription pain medication abusers by cleaning out their medicine cabinets for National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day.
In a plan released four years ago, the administration outlined a strategy to prevent prescription drug abuse. President Obama said his administration has begun to see successful results through education, drug monitoring programs, proper disposal, and medical enforcement. He asked that people continue to follow these guidelines when dealing with prescription drugs. Continue reading “President Encourages Participation in Take-Back Day”→