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Coming to a beach near you: The ‘dad bod’

Photo: Don Johnson 395/cc 2.0/

Sometimes it’s hard to fathom how or why some trends ever gain momentum or become popular. The selfie stick? Kylie Jenner Lip Challenge? #YOLO?

Now, a new body image trend known as the ‘dad bod’ is making its way around the Internet and social media. What makes up this unique physical trait?

According to this MSN article, the dad bod is “a nice balance between a beer gut and working out.” And while this trend seems relatively harmless and all in good fun, a recent study in JAMA Internal Medicine found 67.6 million American adults aged 25 and older are obese and an additional 65.2 million are overweight.

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UMN expert: Cancer screenings are best tool we have to lower cancer deaths

Photo: Stephen Dickter/CC 2.0/

According to the American Cancer Society, more than one million people in the United States get cancer each year. Furthermore, two in three people diagnosed with cancer survive at least five years, due in large part to early detection through cancer screening.

Cancer screenings are the best tool we have right now to lower the rates of death from cancer says Timothy Church, Ph.D., professor of environmental health sciences in the School of Public Health and a member of the Masonic Cancer Center, University of Minnesota. Church is also currently a member of the American Cancer Society’s Guideline Development Group.

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What are the implications of King vs. Burwell?

Photo credit: Kaiser Health News

Note: This post was written by Jean Abraham, Ph.D., and Lynn Blewett, Ph.D.

On March 4, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments in the case of King vs. Burwell. The Supreme Court’s decision on this case will have significant implications for the capacity of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) to reduce the number of uninsured persons in the United States. In this brief we provide an overview of the potential impact of this case on the implementation of the ACA.

Background: The ACA’s Coverage Expansion Mechanisms

The ACA expanded access to health insurance coverage through two primary mechanisms. The first mechanism is an expansion of the Medicaid program through the extension of eligibility to individuals with modified adjusted gross income up to 138 percent of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL) (approximately $33,465 for a family of four). The primary beneficiaries of this expansion are low-income childless adults, as Medicaid eligibility for adults historically has been tied to parental status except at the lowest income levels. In 2012, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that states could choose whether or not to expand Medicaid, and 30 states, including the District of Columbia, have done so to date.

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Fulbright-Saastamoinen Foundation Grant helps speed up research on Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis and deep brain stimulation

Shalom Michaeli (right) and Olli Grӧhn (left) during their meeting with Rector Jukka Mӧnkkӧnen (middle), discussed projects conducted at the MRI center in Kuopio campus of the A.I. Virtanen Institute for Molecular Science

A six-month Fulbright-Saastamoinen Foundation Grant provided a collaboration boost between Shalom Michaeli, Ph.D., professor at the Center for Magnetic Resonance Research (CMRR) at the University of Minnesota and Olli Gröhn, Ph.D., professor and director of the magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) unit and vice director of the A.I. Virtanen Institute for Molecular Science at Kuopio Campus at the University of Eastern Finland.

“During my time in Finland, we made significant progress in establishing MRI biomarkers for Parkinson’s disease (PD) and multiple sclerosis (MS),” said Michaeli. “Noninvasive MRI rotating frame relaxation contrasts developed at the CMRR in close collaboration with the Kuopio team are highly sensitive to slow motion, and could probe critically important processes, such as demyelination, and could serve as noninvasive biomarkers for PD and MS.”

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With summer break ahead, U of M expert shares what foods parents should keep in the fridge and pantry

Photo: USDA/CC 2.0/

Summer break is just around the corner and many parents are hoping to keep the fridge stocked with healthy and convenient options – especially for kids.

Health Talk spoke with Jamie Stang, Ph.D., M.P.H, director of the Leadership Education and Training Program in Maternal and Child Health Nutrition and associate professor in the School of Public Health, to learn how parents can still provide healthy food options this summer even if they’re not at home.

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Research snapshot: Large number of people are eligible for special enrollment periods, majority are uninsured

A study released online today in Health Affairs found there is a large number of people who are potentially eligible for special enrollment periods as part of federal and state Marketplace health insurance exchanges, and the majority are uninsured.

The study was led by Lacey Hartman, a senior research fellow at the State Health Access Data Assistance Center (SHADAC) in the School of Public Health at the University of Minnesota.

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