Archive for the tag 'department of health'

Source: New Yorkers for Beverage Choices

If the battle to kill a proposed ban on large sugary drinks were likened to World War II, the Southern Brooklyn coastline played the role of Normandy this weekend.

The soda industry lobby unleashed an all-out assault on the densely packed beach at Coney Island, with dozens of activists on the sand and a banner-carrying plane overhead in an effort to win the public’s hearts, diets and wallets. From there, they established an outpost at the United Artists theater, also jam-packed with movie-goers escaping the brutal heat outside, with clipboard-wielding workers in T-shirts stating, “I picked out my beverage all by myself,” and pro-soda ads screened before every film.

New Yorkers for Beverage Choice, the beverage industry lobby group behind the push, flew this banner over the Coney Island and Rockaway beaches this weekend and on July 4 as part of an effort to educate New Yorkers about the ramifications of Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s ban on large sugary drinks.

Several weeks ago, Bloomberg’s Administration has proposed a ban on beverages like soda in containers larger than 16-ounces in New York City restaurants, movie theaters, sports arenas, coffee shops, delis, pizza shops, and food trucks or carts.

“No one tells us what neighborhood to live in, what team to root for, or what deli to eat at,” said New Yorkers for Beverage Choice in a video on their website, entitled “Where Will it End?”

The goals of New Yorkers for Beverage Choice are to convey to New Yorkers that standing up to the Bloomberg Administration’s ban is about defending their freedom and rights, and to persuade them to sign petitions and submit comments to the Board of Health to ensure their voice is heard.

The city’s Board of Health will decide whether or not to endorse Bloomberg’s proposal after a public hearing on July 24.

Source: Gravitywave/Flickr

It’s summer! Yes, that means nice weather and sunny days at the beach, but it also means nights filled with annoying buzzes, itching and scratching.

It’s mosquito season!

As the weather gets warmer and mosquito season commences, residents of coastal communities surrounding the Jamaica Bay area will be especially susceptible to bites, as the national park is not sprayed with mosquito repellant for environmental reasons.

New York Magazine, which predicts this year to be the worst year in recent history thanks to the mild winter, put all of our thoughts to words when they described mosquitoes: “Biologists call mosquitoes commensals, from the Latin indicating that we share the same table. The table is our lives, in the summer. The meal is our blood.”

Could anyone have put that in a better way?

To avoid those irritating bloodsuckers from taking bites “off your table,” those living around Jamaica Bay should take the proper precautionary steps. You can stop those bites and make this summer a better one than last!

A city Health Department survey cited by the Daily News showed that mosquitoes are attracted to buckets of water left outside, flower pots, and even soda cans.  The survey said that these are the chief mosquito breeding spots on private property. So do yourselves a favor and get rid of those half empty soda cans. Don’t just toss them in your garbage can. That will attract the bugs. Pour the soda out and rinse the can so that when you throw it out, the can is soda free. Also, be sure to keep your buckets of water and pretty flower pots inside. If the flowers are making you sneeze while indoors, its best to avoid them altogether.

Also, those living in Jamaica Bay stay indoors after dark, when mosquitoes are most rampant. Quickly close the doors to your houses when you come and go, so the bugs do not sneak in and make you look and feel like you have the chicken pox again. When late nights outdoors cannot be avoided, make sure to wear long sleeves and pants, and expose as little skin as possible so that you stay protected from those small little biters. It is also recommended that families spray themselves with insect repellant, especially if they plan to spend time outdoors.

And even if you can handle the discomfort that the  bites bring with them, there is another reason why all should remain protected against mosquitoes. Mosquitoes sometimes carry the West Nile Virus, which they can transmit to humans through bites. The first time that this virus was detected in New York was in 1999, which left the Health Department confused and surprised. Since then, the virus returned to New York year after year. Last year, 11 New York City residents were infected, two of whom lost their lives to the virus.

So before those wretched, disease carrying insects invade Brooklyn, prepare yourselves and follow the advice given above. Don’t give them a reason to choose you to be a part of their next meal.

SUGAR! (Source: Uwe Hermann/Flickr)

BETWEEN THE LINES:  Somewhere in TV heaven, Brooklyn icon Ralph Kramden is so annoyed and likely supports the legions of angry New Yorkers, who are upset over Mayor Bloomberg’s latest proposal, that he’s been shouting, “How sweet it ain’t.”

New Yorkers with expanding waistlines have visibly ignored repeated advice from health pros and nutritionists that too much sugar may lead to a variety of health-related issues.

But don’t fret: Mayor Michael Bloomberg, a veteran proponent of healthier lifestyles, is on our case.

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From the New York Times:

New York City plans to enact a far-reaching ban on the sale of large sodas and other sugary drinks at restaurants, movie theaters and street carts, in the most ambitious effort yet by the Bloomberg administration to combat rising obesity.

The proposed ban would affect virtually the entire menu of popular sugary drinks found in delis, fast-food franchises and even sports arenas, from energy drinks to pre-sweetened iced teas. The sale of any cup or bottle of sweetened drink larger than 16 fluid ounces — about the size of a medium coffee, and smaller than a common soda bottle — would be prohibited under the first-in-the-nation plan, which could take effect as soon as next March.

The measure would not apply to diet sodas, fruit juices, dairy-based drinks like milkshakes, or alcoholic beverages; it would not extend to beverages sold in grocery or convenience stores.

… The mayor, who said he occasionally drank a diet soda “on a hot day,” contested the idea that the plan would limit consumers’ choices, saying the option to buy more soda would always be available.

“Your argument, I guess, could be that it’s a little less convenient to have to carry two 16-ounce drinks to your seat in the movie theater rather than one 32 ounce,” Mr. Bloomberg said in a sarcastic tone. “I don’t think you can make the case that we’re taking things away.”

He also said he foresaw no adverse effect on local businesses, and he suggested that restaurants could simply charge more for smaller drinks if their sales were to drop.

It’s really easy to joke about colonoscopies. Like the one about Johnnie Cochran’s first checkup, when, through clenched teeth, he reminded the doc that if the camera don’t fit, he must acquit. Or the guy who asked his doctor to provide a note for his wife making clear that his head was not, in fact, up there. Or… okay, okay, I’ll stop.

So the topic of rectal health may spur on some silly jokes. But it’s still a serious matter. Dead serious.

After all, colon cancer – a preventable and treatable disease – remains the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths, killing approximately 1,400 New Yorkers every year, according to the New York City Department of Health.

And Russian-Americans are lagging far behind other New Yorkers when it comes to colon cancer screening, recent findings show. So the Department of Health, the Health and Hospitals Corporation, Russian-American community leaders announced a new partnership this morning to raise awareness within the Russian-speaking community.

Get the facts – including statistics and an understanding of why regular colon cancer screenings are important – from the press release below.

Protect yourself. Get the facts.

Source: Wikipedia Commons

Oh no! The city’s best pizzeria, Di Fara’s Pizza in Midwood, was shuttered by Department of Health inspectors yesterday after racking up 67 violation points.

Of course, it’s not a surprise to most familiar with the 1424 Avenue J location. The venerable pizzeria makes most fanatics feel torn. On the one hand: what a pizza! On the other: at $5 a slice, couldn’t you gussy the place up a bit?

Apparently the Health Department agreed with the assessment, and it’s not the first time. It was shut down at least two other times as recently as 2007. Here’s the run down of the latest violations.

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Source: talkoftomatoes/Flickr

The Department of Health is cautioning consumers to not buy or eat any kosher chicken liver for the time being, following an outbreak of Salmonella in the New York City metro area.

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A Brighton Beach business leader has had it with legal and illegal vendors competing with brick-and-mortar stores with higher overhead, but attempts to keep them under control is made more difficult by the medley of city agencies tasked with overseeing them.

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Look at this asshole. Why did nature allow this? (Source: kainet/Flickr)

Bensonhurst Bean has picked up a story from NY1, revealing that West Nile Virus has been detected in mosquitoes in Marine Park and Gravesend, among several other Brooklyn neighborhoods.

As the Bensonhurst news blog points out, “The Department of Health is advising residents to take precautions, such as wearing long pants, dumping out or reporting standing water and repairing window screens, in order to avoid mosquito bites.”

Tests by the city have turned up positive for West Nile in Gravesend, Marine Park, Dyker Heights, Bath Beach, Windsor Terrace and Greenwood Heights. No human cases have been reported, but the city is advising residents to clear out any standing water – the breeding grounds for mosquitoes – from their property, and to report any instances elsewhere to 311 and their local community board.

Notice anything weird about this photo of Marmaris, at 3081 Emmons Avenue, taken on Wednesday afternoon? No? Let’s look at one of the other doors.

Hmm. Another tree in front a door. Very strange. What’s going on here? Perhaps we should take a peek behind one of the trees. Maybe there’s a hot wood nymph or something…

Believe me, you want to know what’s going on here. Click to continue…

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