Playing outside can help kids — and their parents — maintain a healthy weight.
January 29, 2014 Overweight kindergartners are much more likely to be obese by eighth grade compared to their normal-weight peers, a study finds. The solution may be for women to avoid gaining too much weight during pregnancy, researchers say, as well as helping kids get exercise and eat healthy foods.
<iframe src="http://www.npr.org/player/embed/267829554/268404423" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no">
January 21, 2014 Scientists are celebrating after receiving a signal from a spacecraft on a long journey. The Rosetta is studying a comet in more detail than ever before. The spacecraft's call home means the robot has successfully awakened itself from a long hibernation.
<iframe src="http://www.npr.org/player/embed/264399871/264399874" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no">
You tried burping. You tried bouncing. You tried swaddling. Now what?
January 20, 2014 As many as 15 percent of babies have colic, which can cause bouts of inconsolable crying. Researchers are testing probiotics to see if these good bacteria can help. But they don't know how the supplements work, or how they may affect children's health long term.
<iframe src="http://www.npr.org/player/embed/263487578/264092800" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no">
January 7, 2014 Lawyers for thousands of patients who had to have their defective hip replacements removed have reached a settlement with the company that made the faulty device. Many patients, however, aren't satisfied, and consumer advocates say the case illustrates what's wrong with how the government regulates implantable medical devices.
<iframe src="http://www.npr.org/player/embed/260409045/260409047" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no">
December 31, 2013 The Food and Drug Administration is considering restricting or even possibly banning menthol cigarettes. Public health advocates are pushing for this, saying menthol makes cigarettes more addictive and makes it easier for young people to start smoking. But opponents argue there's no evidence that menthol is bad and even some evidence it may be less risky. They also worry about creating a dangerous black market for menthol cigarettes, especially in African American communities, where menthol is most popular.
<iframe src="http://www.npr.org/player/embed/258671720/258889932" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no">
November 26, 2013 The Food and Drug Administration has issued a warning letter to the company 23andMe. It wants the company to stop selling its $99 saliva test to detect a person's genetic predisposition to various diseases.
<iframe src="http://www.npr.org/player/embed/247297852/247297833" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no">
November 25, 2013 The Food and Drug Administration has sent a warning letter to the company 23andMe demanding that its saliva test be taken off the market. The company claims the test can detect the genetic likelihood of more than a hundred diseases — a claim the FDA says the company has not proved sufficiently.
<iframe src="http://www.npr.org/player/embed/247220418/247220426" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no">
November 18, 2013 Princeton University is trying to stop an outbreak of an unusual form of bacterial meningitis, which has already struck seven students. Princeton's trustees decided Monday to start offering students a vaccine that the federal government has approved specifically to help protect students.
<iframe src="http://www.npr.org/player/embed/246015701/246015718" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no">
November 18, 2013 Anxious mice calm down when they get an infusion of gut microbes from mellow mice. That has scientists wondering if gut microbes play a role in the human brain, too. Research on that is only just beginning. But it's intriguing to think there could be a real truth to the phrase "gut feelings."
<iframe src="http://www.npr.org/player/embed/244526773/245913171" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no">
He's not just getting a cold. He's building his microbiome.
November 6, 2013 Parents of new babies know they get sick a lot. That may be because infants deliberately suppress their immune systems so that essential microbes have a chance to settle in. An immune suppression system in the blood of newborn babies could be key to building a healthy microbiome.
November 4, 2013 Bacteria aren't all bad for you. In fact, they may well be the reason you're healthy.
Say hello to your microbiome, Rob Stein. Our intrepid correspondent decided to get his gut bacteria analyzed. Now he's wondering if he needs to eat more garlic and onions.
November 4, 2013 Scientists are asking people to contribute samples of their gut microbes to help figure out how those microbes affect human health. But ethicists say sharing that information, as well as the personal health data that make it useful to researchers, poses risks. That's especially true for children.
<iframe src="http://www.npr.org/player/embed/240278593/242910372" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no">
Hydrocodone, sold as Vicodin and other brand names, may face tighter restrictions on prescribing and use.
October 24, 2013 The painkiller OxyContin is already classified as a Schedule II drug because of the "severe" risk of addiction. Now the Food and Drug Administration wants to move Vicodin and other painkillers containing hydrocodone to Schedule II as well, citing soaring rates of addiction and overdose deaths.
This micrograph shows a single mitochondrion (yellow), one of many little energy factories inside a cell.
Keith R. Porter/Science Source
October 9, 2013 The treatment would allow doctors to replace the genetic glitches in one human egg with healthy DNA from a donor egg. Ethicists are concerned because any changes to eggs or sperm could be passed on for generations to come.
<iframe src="http://www.npr.org/player/embed/229167219/230639900" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no">
Knight (left) and Bucheli take soil samples from beneath one of the decomposing bodies.
Katie Hayes Luke for NPR
September 23, 2013 Long after we die, many of the microscopic creatures living in and on us continue to thrive. In field experiments, forensic scientists are tracking changes in communities of microbes on human remains that could one day serve as clues.
<iframe src="http://www.npr.org/player/embed/219375086/225480542" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no">
NPR thanks our sponsors
Become an NPR sponsor