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May 4, 2018

Weekend reads: Sorry, 'Swedish' meatballs aren't from Sweden

Daily Briefing

    Ben Palmer's reads

    Saunas could reduce a person's risk for stroke. Going to a sauna multiple times a week could help reduce your risk of stroke, according to a study published in the journal Neurology. For the study, researchers observed over 1,600 men and women ages 53 to 74, all of whom had never had a stroke at the study's outset. The researchers asked them how often they went to a sauna and how long they stayed in the sauna. After following the participants for an average of 15 years, researchers found that people who visited the sauna two to three times a week were 12% less likely to have a stroke than those who visited the sauna just once a week. In addition, those who visited the sauna four to seven times a week had a 62% reduced risk of having a stroke than those who visited the sauna once a week. Jari Laukkanen, a professor of medicine at the University of Eastern Finland and senior author on the study, said that temperature increases can "limit inflammatory processes in the body and reduce arterial stiffness," which could explain the study results.

    Just how strict are those expiration dates on pill bottles? While FDA advises against using expired drugs, experts tell the Associated Press that, aside from aspirin and the antibiotic tetracycline, they don't know of any cases of patients being harmed by expired medicine. Ali Raja, an emergency medicine doctor at Massachusetts General Hospital said, "A year out, I think you're perfectly OK to use the medications." However, experts say that drugs need to be properly stored—storing drugs in areas with high humidity or fluctuating temperatures could cause them to degrade faster and lose their potency. As such, it's best to keep them in a cool, dark places, according to Michael Gaino from the American Society of Healthsystem Pharmacists. Further, experts also say not to take expired liquid medicines like insulin and other drugs that need refrigeration, which they can degrade faster than pills, particularly if they're not kept cold.

    Rachel Schulze's reads

    More like Turkish meatballs. It turns out so-called "Swedish" meatballs are from Turkey. Sweden's official Twitter account, Sweden.Se, last Saturday in a tweet told its follows that the dish is "actually based on a recipe King Charles XII brought home from Turkey in the early 18th century. Let's stick to the facts!" Several Turkish media outlets have characterized the tweet as a "confession" and used it as an opportunity to note other products the king brought from Turkey, according to BBC. Anadoly Agency, a Turkish media outlet, refers to Annie Mattson, a researcher at Sweden's Uppsala University, who says King Charles XII brought coffee beans and cabbage with him as well.

    Meet the high school senior who was accepted to 113 colleges. Jasmine Harrison, a 17-year-old from North Carolina, applied to 115 colleges and received acceptances from 113. On top of that, she was awarded more than $4 million in scholarship offers. Harrison, who has a 4.0, said once acceptance letters and financial offers started arrive, she became more confident and sent out more applications, according to the New York Times. Harrison has chosen to attend Bennett College, in Greensboro, North Carolina, where she wants to major in biology and study to become a neonatal intensive care unit nurse.

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