It’s a morning ritual for millions: a couple of cups of coffee followed by a couple of poops.
Pranjal Mehar of Tech Explorist reports that one study found that 29% of participants needed to use the bathroom within 20 minutes of drinking a cup of coffee.
In the search for the appropriated answer, scientists in Texas fed rats coffee with gut bacteria in Petri dishes. They found that coffee suppressed bacteria and increased muscle motility, regardless of caffeine content.
Scientists additionally examined changes to bacteria when the fecal matter was exposed to coffee in a petri dish, and by studying the composition offeces after rats ingested differing concentrations of coffee over three days. The study also documented changes to smooth muscles in the intestine and colon, and the response of those muscles when exposed directly to coffee.
The study found that growth of bacteria and other microbes in fecal matter in a petri dish was suppressed with a solution of 1.5 percent coffee, and growth of microbes was even lower with a 3 percent solution of coffee. Decaffeinated coffee had a similar effect on the microbiome.
Xuan-Zheng Shi, Ph.D., lead author of the study and associate professor in internal medicine at the University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston said, “When rats were treated with coffee for three days, the ability of the muscles in the small intestine to contract appeared to increase. Interestingly, these effects are caffeine-independent, because caffeine-free coffee had similar effects as regular coffee.”
After the rats were fed coffee for three days, the overall bacteria counts in their feces were decreased. According to scientists, further study isrequired to determine whether these changes favor firmicutes, considered “good” bacteria, or enterobacteria, which are regarded as negative.
Muscles in the lower intestines and colons of the rats showed increased ability to contract after a period of coffee ingestion, and coffee stimulated contractions of the small intestine and colon when muscle tissues were exposed to coffee directly in the lab.
There’s a reason the clones in George Orwell’s 1984 had gin available: Because it’s fucking awful.
According to Maya-Rose Torrao of Briefly, inventors Les Ansley and Professor Paula Ansley (sounds like a lab relationship that shouldn’t be) have created South Africa’s first ever gin made from elephant poop.
The two creators took inspiration from Mzansi’s gentle giants when they noticed that much of what elephants eat passes through their systems undigested
The creators of this unique drink explain, on their website: “The original idea for elephant dung gin came from marrying the love of Africa and its wildlife with the love of gin. We are both scientists—and therefore inclined towards novel ideas and problem solving—so when Paula had the idea we really wanted to see whether it would actually be possible. The more we explored the concept the more it opened up and the more excited we became.”
I loves me the fresh mint for the fish and the lamb, but whenever I grow it in Brisbane the bloody possums eat it.
The cats aren’t as useful as I thought they’d be.
I could put some protection around it, like I do with basil, and it is flourishing, but I’m sorta lazy.
Besides, birds and lizards and apparently fish and who knows what else crap on these things all the time.
Canada Herb is recalling Canada Herb brand Fish Mint from the marketplace due to possible Salmonella contamination. Consumers should not consume the recalled product described: Fish Mint LOT: 1721-0060 13/FEB or all packages sold up to and including February 19, 2019.
We live near the publicly-funded Princess Alexandria hospital in Brisbane.
A helicopter flies over our house a couple of times a day bringing some victim from the outback or the coast.
The state of Queensland is really, really big.
It reminds me of my friend, Jim, and what he went through in the aftermath of the E.coli O157 outbreak in drinking water that killed seven and sickened 2,500 in the town of Walkerton, population 5,000.
Jim knew that every helicopter was someone dead or dying being flown to the medical center in London, Ontario (that’s in Canada, like Walkerton).
I think of Jim and the victims every time a chopper goes past.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control reports a center pivot irrigation system intended to pump livestock waste water onto adjacent farmland in Nebraska malfunctioned, allowing excessive run off to collect in a road ditch near two wells that fed a municipal water supply, sickening 39 persons who consumed untreated city water. The use of culture-independent diagnostic tests facilitated case identification allowing for rapid public health response.
Access to clean water sources continues to be an important public health issue, and public health professionals should consider exposure to untreated water sources as a potential cause for Campylobacter outbreaks.
In March 2017, the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (NDHHS) and the Southwest Nebraska Public Health Department were notified of an apparent cluster of Campylobacter jejuni infections in city A and initiated an investigation. Overall, 39 cases were investigated, including six confirmed and 33 probable. Untreated, unboiled city A tap water (i.e., well water) was the only exposure significantly associated with illness (odds ratio [OR] = 7.84; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.69–36.36). City A is served by four untreated wells and an interconnected distribution system. Onsite investigations identified that a center pivot irrigation system intended to pump livestock wastewater from a nearby concentrated animal feeding operation onto adjacent farmland had malfunctioned, allowing excessive runoff to collect in a road ditch near two wells that supplied water to the city. These wells were promptly removed from service, after which no subsequent cases occurred. This coordinated response rapidly identified an important risk to city A’s municipal water supply and provided the evidence needed to decommission the affected wells, with plans to build a new well to safely serve this community.
On March 10, 2017, NDHHS was notified of five reports of campylobacteriosis in the Southwest Nebraska Public Health Department jurisdiction. Two positive culture reports and three positive culture-independent diagnostic tests, specifically a gastrointestinal polymerase chain reaction (PCR) panel, were received from persons not living together. Campylobacteriosis is a reportable condition in Nebraska, and this number of cases was higher than expected; during 2006–2016, an average of one Campylobacter case was reported in a city A resident every 3 years. Initial questioning of ill persons did not include an assessment of exposure to untreated drinking water and suggested ground beef consumption as a possible shared exposure. The Nebraska Department of Agriculture Food Safety and Consumer Protection obtained distribution records for poultry and ground beef for two local restaurants and one local grocery store. The distribution of poultry and ground beef was evaluated by reviewing the routing records of these products to their source, and no evidence of a shared poultry source was identified. The ground beef was not ground in-house at the grocery store, and the distributors that supplied ground beef to the grocery store and each of the two local restaurants were not shared. Through interviews of city A residents and business owners, investigators were made aware of a report of standing water that “smelled of cattle manure” in a roadside ditch near two municipal water wells.
A collaborative on-site investigation revealed that during the pumping of a large volume of livestock wastewater from a concentrated animal feeding operation through a center pivot irrigation system, the system malfunctioned at an undetermined time. The wastewater was intended to be placed on adjacent farmland. This malfunction allowed excessive runoff to flood a road ditch approximately 15 feet (4.6 m) from two municipal water well houses (3 and 4) that had been operating 6 days before the onset of illness in the first patient. The presence of this standing water was confirmed by city A water operators, who reported seeing water in the ditch for 4 days (February 22–25) (Figure). Pump records indicated that during February 22–27, well 3 was in use, and during February 28–March 7, well 4 was in use (Table 1). During both periods, another well (well 2) was also operating. Wells are rotated in and out of service by city operators as part of regular operations. Water is distributed through the well system without any disinfection or filtration. Routine total coliform and Escherichia coli testing of water from the distribution system was performed on March 8; however, only wells 2 and 5 were operating on that date. As part of the investigation, additional coliform and E. coli testing was performed again on March 16 on direct samples from wells 2, 3, 4, and 5; bacterial culture specifically for Campylobacter was performed on March 20 (wells 4 and 5) and 27 (wells 2 and 3). All samples were negative for coliforms and Campylobacter. No additional pump or testing records were reviewed.
On March 16, Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality and the Department of Agriculture conducted an additional investigation of two concentrated animal feeding operation–certified waste lagoons (a manufactured basin that collects livestock waste and water in an oxygen-deprived setting to promote anaerobic conditions as a way to manage refuse)* and associated use of three pivot irrigation systems. The investigation team observed that water from the waste lagoons had been pumped through a pivot onto an adjacent field, which is a common farming practice for fertilizing farm ground or watering crops. City operators confirmed that on February 24 they had observed flow of livestock wastewater into the road ditch near well 4. They followed the wastewater up the road ditch and reported that it came out of the farmland upstream from the wells. Investigators also obtained details of total well depths, static water levels, and pumping water levels (measured during active pumping). Wells 4 and 3 were relatively shallow, with static water levels of 21 and 22 feet, pumping levels of 25 and 26 feet, and total well depths of 43 and 46 feet, respectively; both began service in the 1930s, similar to the other wells in the system, which were also older.
While details around this event were being clarified and environmental testing was pending, an Internet-based questionnaire was designed to aid case-finding and assess potential exposures. A probable case was defined as a diarrheal illness of ≥2 days’ duration with one or more additional signs or symptoms (nausea, vomiting, fever, chills, or headache) in a city A resident, with onset during February 28–March 23, 2017. A confirmed case was defined as a person meeting the probable case definition with either stool culture or PCR-positive results for Campylobacter, or a laboratory-confirmed probable illness in a nonresident who worked, dined, or shopped for groceries in city A. Among approximately 600 city A residents, 94 (16%) completed a questionnaire to report food consumption history, drinking water source, animal exposures, and symptoms. Among questionnaire respondents, 39 (41%) campylobacteriosis cases (six confirmed and 33 probable) were identified, with illness onset from February 28–March 21 (Figure); 25 (64%) cases occurred in females and 14 (36%) in males. The median age was 34.5 years (range = 1.5–85 years). Twelve (31%) patients sought medical care, and three (8%) were hospitalized; no deaths were reported.
Data analysis indicated a significant association between ill persons and consumption of untreated, unboiled municipal tap water (OR = 7.84; 95% CI = 1.69–36.36) (Table 2). Other exposures were assessed, including unpasteurized milk, animal contact, raw poultry, and ground beef, but none demonstrated a significant association with illness. Notably, no cases were reported among the approximately 28 residents of city A’s only nursing home, which used city water but treated it with a reverse osmosis system.
Public Health Response
Wells 3 and 4 were both permanently removed from service on March 16, and no additional illnesses were reported with onset after March 21. On April 25, NDHHS reclassified these wells to Emergency Status, meaning the well can only be pumped during a case of emergency (e.g., fire, drought, etc.) for nonpotable purposes. Furthermore, meetings were held with area stakeholders to present these findings as evidence to support the award of a planning grant to city A to explore options for a new, higher-volume well to be dug to an acceptable depth in a different location.
This investigation implicates Campylobacter jejuni as the cause of this outbreak, most likely from a municipal water system contaminated by wastewater runoff from an adjacent concentrated animal feeding operation (1). In addition to environmental and statistical findings, this conclusion is consistent with prior investigations that demonstrate Campylobacter outbreaks of similar size are historically associated with contaminated water (2–7). Although laboratory testing of the water in this investigation did not yield any positive results, samples were not taken until long after the contamination event, and test results might have been affected by switches among wells supplying the system over time. These findings also suggest that routine coliform testing might not be a good indicator of the presence of Campylobacter species (8). Further, it is possible that Campylobacter in particular might be viable but not necessarily detectable by culture in water systems (9,10). The use of both culture and culture-independent diagnostic tests (PCR) were needed to detect the initial cluster of cases and early recognition of this outbreak. If culture alone had been used, only two cases would have been reported, one of which did not occur in a city A resident. Of those two culture-confirmed cases, one patient refused the interview and the other had typical Campylobacter exposures, such as live poultry, which might not have prompted such a rapid response. This investigation demonstrates the importance of considering exposure to untreated water sources as a potential cause for Campylobacter outbreaks. Including this risk factor in initial questioning could help to expedite outbreak investigations. Ultimately, early recognition and a coordinated response by several state and local agencies greatly facilitated this successful public health intervention.
Campylobacteriosis outbreak associated with contaminated municipal water supply-Nebraska, 2017
There’s going to be an exhibition that is set to display shit of all shapes and sizes. But most importantly, that shit is going to be cute. Or kawaii as they say in Japanese.
There’s going to be some fun and interactive shit for people of all ages.
Dubbed the Unko Museum (Unko translates to shit in Japanese), the exhibition will run between March 15 to July 15.
Shit Museum. Yeah…
Visitors would be able to find cute cartoonified shit all over the exhibition. There’s even going to be an “Insta-poop area” where coils of poop adorn the four walls – perfect for those of you who’re into such shit.
Pui Fun of World of Buzz writes that cherries are an amazing fruit that has lots of nutrients but eating too much of it isn’t a good idea either, as proven by this 32-year-old lady in Chongqing, China.
According to Sina, the lady surnamed Wang was preparing to go to Wuhan for the Chinese New Year celebrations when she received two boxes of fresh cherries from her relatives and friends. Since there would be no one home during the holidays, she decided to wash the cherries and put them in two big bags so that she could eat them during her journey to Wuhan. Source: Health A few days later, Wang experienced severe stomach discomfort after she got off the plane and rushed to the bathroom in the hotel. She was shocked when she discovered that her poop looked “bloody” and red in colour. Her diarrhoea continued and she had to go to the toilet for more than 20 times in one night. At one point, it got so bad that she even fainted in the bathroom. Her family was worried about her and sent her to the hospital the next morning where the doctor quickly ran some tests on her stools. However, when the results came back, the doctor was surprised to see that there were no big issues with her stools.
The doctor suspected that the “bloody stools” that raised the alarm could actually be caused by red pigments in the food that Wang had eaten and began to question her. It was then that Wang recalled she had eaten 3kg of fresh cherries for five days straight and before she got off the plane to Wuhan, she had eaten about 50 cherries in one go.
Why use scientists? They could have used any one of my five daughters or three grandsons, whom I am sure have all swallowed Lego at one time or another.
James Chrisman of Thrillist writes an article published in The Journal of Pediatrics and Child Health last week states, on average, the amazing journey of a small yellow plastic head through the human body took 1.71 days. One of these vessels never appeared again, though. It could show up at any day now (they, presumably, won’t be looking for it, so we’ll never know) or maybe, as the blog post suggests, “one day many years from now, a gastroenterologist performing a colonoscopy will find it staring back at him.”
(For those following up on my recent colonoscopy, which several readers have in private messages, I can say the doc removed a large polyp and two small ones, all were benign, my prostate seems fine and no Lego was found).
As for the concerns this study was meant to address, with regard to kids swallowing these toys, the paper said: “A toy object quickly passes through adult subjects with no complications. This will reassure parents, and the authors advocate that no parent should be expected to search through their child’s feces to prove object retrieval.”
Some objected to the study on Twitter and asserted, “It’s funny and interesting but wrong patient group, single type of FB, tiny sample size. It’s not EBM [evidence-based medicine] and should not change practice.”
To which the authors retorted: “Of course it’s not, it’s a bit of fun in the run up to Xmas.” Consider that the paper used as metrics the Stool Hardness and Transit (SHAT) score and the Found and Retrieved Time (FART) score.
It’s bad enough to live on Jello – like I had to before my recent colonscopy – but when someone deliberately adds shit, at a hospital, things get worse.
ABC News reports jellies and custards at one of Adelaide’s biggest hospitals, Flinders Medical Centre, were contaminated with a “solid organic” product
Police would not rule out faeces, and said the material was being analysed
Health staff are assisting police with a criminal investigation
“We are satisfied that there are no patients who have been fed the contaminated foodstuffs. No threat or claim has been made in connection with this,” Acting Assistant Commissioner Joanne Shanahan said.
Asked whether it was faeces, and what colour the substance was, Assistant Commissioner Shanahan said she could not comment beyond saying the “matter was being forensically analysed”.
The contaminated items were discovered yesterday on a refrigerator tray in a hospital kitchen, and police were notified this morning.
They have now launched a criminal investigation.
“During a routine food safety inspection yesterday a small number of desserts were identified as contaminated,” said Sue O’Neill, the CEO of the Southern Adelaide Local Health Network.
“Staff were vigilant and isolated the area and raised the alarm. Management then initiated a small assessment team who investigated all other prepared food.”
Ms O’Neill said the contaminant was a “solid, organic-looking product” and was “very obvious”.