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A sales assistant presents the “T-back” mooncake, prepared for the mid-Autumn festival in Singapore. The name is a cheeky reference to the 15th day of the eighth lunar month, which in Cantonese is a colloquial euphemism for buttocks. (Edgar Su/Reuters)
A sales assistant presents the “T-back” mooncake, prepared for the mid-Autumn festival in Singapore. The name is a cheeky reference to the 15th day of the eighth lunar month, which in Cantonese is a colloquial euphemism for buttocks. (Edgar Su/Reuters)

Talking points: Risky weight loss in teens, weather and the flu, and what killed the mammoth Add to ...

RISKY WEIGHT LOSS

Today’s teenagers just can’t catch a break. USA Today reports that formerly overweight teens are at risk of developing a serious eating disorder as they drop pounds, but the identification of that condition is often delayed because of their obesity history. A study by the Mayo Clinic of Minnesota focused on two cases in which teens with a history of obesity developed restrictive eating patterns while in the process of losing weight. Despite regular checkups, the disorders went unidentified and untreated for as long as two years.

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A CLOUD OF FLU

Remember how your mother told you to button up your overcoat this time of year? Mom was right. CBC.ca reports that researchers at McMaster University have discovered that coming down with the flu has far more to do with the weather than previously believed. The team studied influenza A breakouts in Canada between 1999 and 2013. Each year, the flu season began earlier in Western provinces and considerably later in Newfoundland. “The difference could be as much as five weeks,” said professor Dalhai He. Researchers likened the flu bug to a large cloud that moves west to east with the fall weather.

WOOLLY AND WARM

Contrary to popular belief, it seems it was climate change and not club-wielding hunters that pushed the woolly mammoth to extinction. A BBC report says new DNA analysis shows the number of mammoths began to decrease much earlier than previously thought, and their eventual demise correlated with global climate change. A recent study by the Swedish Museum of Natural History found the species nearly went extinct 120,000 years ago when Earth heated up, but survived when the planet entered another ice age. Researchers concluded the eventual demise of the creatures began 20,000 years ago.

THOUGHT DU JOUR

“The trouble with music appreciation in general is that people are taught to have too much respect for music; they should be taught to love it instead.”

Igor Stravinsky, Composer (1882-1971)

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