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Jim Liebelt Christian Blog and Commentary

Jim Liebelt

Senior Editor of Publications for HomeWord

What's Hot? 01/30/15

Trending Today on Twitter - 1/30/15
1. #ProjectAlmanac
2. #HappyBirthdayPhil
3. Suge Knight
4. #WingBowl23
5. #NerdierSports
6. #NationalCroissantDay
7. #ScandalHangover
8. Baby Chipotle Burrito
9. Conan
10. Big Sean
Source: Twitter

Hot Searches on Google - 1/30/15
1. Bruce Jenner
2. Suge Knight
3. Scandal
4. Parenthood
5. Ted 2
6. Rasheed Sulaimon
7. Katy Perry
8. Melissa Gilbert
9. Aaron Hernandez
10. Kendra Sunderland
Source: Google

iTunes Top 10 Singles - 1/30/15
1. Uptown Funk (feat. Bruno Mars) - Mark Ronson
2. Thinking Out Loud - Ed Sheeran
3. FourFiveSeconds - Rihanna and Kanye West and Paul McCartney
4. Sugar - Maroon 5
5. Love Me Like You Do - Ellie Goulding
6. Take Me to Church - Hozier
7. Blank Space - Taylor Swift
8. Centuries - Fall Out Boy
9. Lips Are Movin - Meghan Trainor
10. Time of Our Lives - Pitbull & Ne-Yo
Source: iTunes

Top 10 TV Shows in Prime Time - Week Ending 1/25/15
1. Scorpion
3. American Idol - Wed
4. The Big Bang Theory
5. Empire
6. Mom
7. American Idol - Thurs
8. Criminal Minds
9. NCIS: Los Angeles
10. The Mentalist
Source: Nielsen Co.

YouTube Videos Trending Today - 1/30/15
1. Senbonzakura - cover by Lindsey Stirling
2. 2Cellos & Lang Lang - Live and Let Die
3. The Value of Playing Gay in Videogames
4. 3 Time Travel Paradoxes!!
5. Moses Brown - School is Closed
Source: YouTube

Top 5 Movies - Last Weekend
1. American Sniper
2. The Boy Next Door
3. Paddington
4. The Wedding Ringer
5. Taken 3
Source: Rotten Tomatoes

*The following is excerpted from an online article from Yahoo Parenting.

Most kids love soda, it’s true, but we also know that sugary drinks are plain unhealthy. Drinking soda — diet or not — has been linked to a litany of health problems including diabetes, obesity, aggression, high blood pressure, even kidney damage. Now, researchers have added another health hazard to the mix: Girls who drink lots of soda enter puberty earlier than girls who don’t.

Harvard researchers studied 5,600 girls, ages nine to 14, between 1996 and 2001 and discovered that soda drinkers (who drank more than 1.5 servings per day) had their first period 2.7 months earlier than girls who drank two or less of these beverages a week. The study included only non-diet drinks and the results were independent of the girls’ BMI (body mass index), how much food they consumed, or their exercise habits. Girls who drank soda got their periods, on average, by 12.8 years, compared to 13 years for those who drank the least.

Yahoo Parenting couldn’t reach study author Jenny Carwile, a postdoctoral associate in the department of epidemiology at Boston University for comment, however, she said in a press release, "Starting periods early is a risk factor for depression during adolescence and breast cancer during adulthood. Thus, our findings have implications beyond just starting menstruation early.

Carwile added, “This is one more nail in soda’s coffin.”

Sugar is likely the culprit, although the reasons the sweet stuff triggers early puberty are unclear. However, drinks with added sugar cause a boost in insulin, which creates higher concentration of the sex hormones estrogen and progesterone, both of which are associated with earlier periods.

“There are several reasons why early puberty is dangerous for young girls,” Joseph Pinzone, MD., a Santa Monica based internist, tells Yahoo Parenting. “It could lead to the closing of the growth plate — in other words, a growth stunt — and heightened estrogen levels could put girls at risk for breast cancer.” There’s also a psychological downside: Being the only girl with her period can feel isolating and studies show that girls who undergo earlier puberty are sexually active at younger ages.

Source: Yahoo Parenting

Ed note: Researchers are trying to assess the influence of social media on adolescent drug use. The findings of the study below did not connect under-25 pro-marijuana Twitter posts with marijuana use, but the high volume of these messages, and the resulting teen exposure to them gave researchers reason for concern over the potential enticement factor. --JL

*The following is excerpted from an online article from Healio.

Study findings published in the Journal of Adolescent Health indicate the majority of tweets about marijuana were sent and received by Twitter users aged younger than 25 years.

“Many people believe marijuana use is harmless, and social media conversations almost certainly drive some of those opinions, making the drug appear socially acceptable,” study researcher Patricia A. Cavazos-Rehg, PhD, of Washington University’s Institute for Public Health, said in a press release.

Cavazos-Rehg and colleagues conducted a computer search using terms associated with marijuana consumption such as “joint,” “blunt,” and “stoner,” which identified 7.6 million tweets related to marijuana sent during a 1-month period in 2014. Researchers narrowed their search to marijuana-associated tweets sent or received by Twitter accounts with more than 775 followers and Klout scores of at least 44. The final sample had nearly 7,000 tweets.

Seventy-seven percent of tweets were pro-marijuana, 5% were anti-marijuana and 18% were neutral, according to researchers.

Accounts tweeting pro-marijuana tweets had more than 50 million Twitter followers combined, nearly 12-fold the followers who tweeted anti-marijuana messages. The majority of pro-marijuana tweets discussed alleged benefits of marijuana and encouraged its use and legalization.

Most Twitter users sending and receiving marijuana-associated tweets were aged younger than 25 years, and many were teenagers, according to the release.

“Although we cannot yet link pro-pot tweets to actual drug use, we should be worried because many people receiving these messages are at an age when they are most likely to experiment with drugs and develop problems with substance use,” Cavazos-Rehg said in the release.

Source: Healio