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Mate preferences and mating-related behaviours are hypothesised to change over the menstrual cycle to increase reproductive fitness. Recent large-scale studies suggest that previously reported hormone-linked behavioural changes are not robust. The proposal that women's preference for associating with male kin is down-regulated during the ovulatory (high-fertility) phase of the menstrual cycle to reduce inbreeding has not been tested in large samples. Consequently, we investigated the relationship between longitudinal changes in women's steroid hormone levels and their perceptions of faces experimentally manipulated to possess kinship cues (Study 1). Women viewed faces displaying kinship cues as more attractive and trustworthy, but this effect was not related to hormonal proxies of conception risk. Study 2 employed a daily diary approach and found no evidence that women spent less time with kin generally or with male kin specifically during the fertile phase of the menstrual cycle. Thus, neither study found evidence that inbreeding avoidance is up-regulated during the ovulatory phase of the menstrual cycle.
Fetal and child development are shaped by early life exposures, including maternal health states, nutrition and educational and home environments. We aimed to determine if suboptimal pre-pregnancy maternal body mass index (BMI; underweight, overweight, obese) would associate with poorer cognitive outcomes in children, and whether early life nutritional, educational and home environments modify these relationships. Self-reported data were obtained from mother-infant dyads from the pan-Canadian prospective Maternal-Infant Research on Environmental Chemicals cohort. Relationships between potential risk factors (pre-pregnancy maternal BMI, breastfeeding practices and Home Observation Measurement of the Environment [HOME] score) and child cognitive development at age three (Weschler’s Preschool and Primary Scale of Intelligence, Third Edition scale and its subcategories) were each evaluated using analysis of variance, multivariable regression models and moderating analyses. Amongst the 528 mother−child dyads, increasing maternal pre-pregnancy BMI was negatively associated with scores for child full-scale IQ (β [95% CI]; −2.01 [−3.43, −0.59], p = 0.006), verbal composite (−1.93 [−3.33, −0.53], p = 0.007), and information scale (−0.41 [−0.70, −0.14], p = 0.003) scores. Higher maternal education level or HOME score attenuated the negative association between maternal pre-pregnancy BMI and child cognitive outcome by 30%–41% and 7%–22%, respectively, and accounted for approximately 5%–10% greater variation in male children’s cognitive scores compared to females. Maternal education and higher quality home environment buffer the negative effect of elevated maternal pre-pregnancy BMI on child cognitive outcomes. Findings suggest that relationships between maternal, social and environmental factors must be considered to reveal pathways that shape risk for, and resiliency against, suboptimal cognitive outcomes in early life.
To describe the incidence of systemic overlap and typical coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) symptoms in healthcare personnel (HCP) following COVID-19 vaccination and association of reported symptoms with diagnosis of severe acute respiratory coronavirus virus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection in the context of public health recommendations regarding work exclusion.
This prospective cohort study was conducted between December 16, 2020, and March 14, 2021, with HCP who had received at least 1 dose of either the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine.
Large healthcare system in New England.
HCP were prompted to complete a symptom survey for 3 days after each vaccination. Reported symptoms generated automated guidance regarding symptom management, SARS-CoV-2 testing requirements, and work restrictions. Overlap symptoms (ie, fever, fatigue, myalgias, arthralgias, or headache) were categorized as either lower or higher severity. Typical COVID-19 symptoms included sore throat, cough, nasal congestion or rhinorrhea, shortness of breath, ageusia and anosmia.
Among 64,187 HCP, a postvaccination electronic survey had response rates of 83% after dose 1 and 77% after dose 2. Report of ≥3 lower-severity overlap symptoms, ≥1 higher-severity overlap symptoms, or at least 1 typical COVID-19 symptom after dose 1 was associated with increased likelihood of testing positive. HCP with prior COVID-19 infection were significantly more likely to report severe overlap symptoms after dose 1.
Reported overlap symptoms were common; however, only report of ≥3 low-severity overlap symptoms, at least 1 higher-severity overlap symptom, or any typical COVID-19 symptom were associated with infection. Work-related restrictions for overlap symptoms should be reconsidered.
To compare the cost and affordability of two fortnightly diets (representing the national guidelines and current consumption) across areas containing Australia’s major supermarkets.
The Healthy Diets Australian Standardised Affordability and Pricing protocol was used.
Price data were collected online and via phone calls in fifty-one urban and inner regional locations across Australia.
Healthy diets were consistently less expensive than current (unhealthy) diets. Nonetheless, healthy diets would cost 25–26 % of the disposable income for low-income households and 30–31 % of the poverty line. Differences in gross incomes (the most available income metric which overrepresents disposable income) drove national variations in diet affordability (from 14 % of the median gross household incomes in the Australian Capital Territory and Northern Territory to 25 % of the median gross household income in Tasmania).
In Australian cities and regional areas with major supermarkets, access to affordable diets remains problematic for families receiving low incomes. These findings are likely to be exacerbated in outer regional and remote areas (not included in this study). To make healthy diets economically appealing, policies that reduce the (absolute and relative) costs of healthy diets and increase the incomes of Australians living in poverty are required.
In this chapter, we provide an overview of the theoretical basis of, barriers to, and interventions aimed at improving belonging in schools. Our discussion focuses on interpersonal relations and individual perceptions as fundamental to the sense of belonging. We review research on belonging as a fundamental human motive as well as newer work exploring variability in the experience of belonging. We also address barriers to belonging, illustrating the relational role of peers and teachers. We conclude by highlighting three interventions shown to foster belonging in an educational context, focusing on challenging psychological perceptions of threat (Walton & Cohen, 2011), changing the climate (Walton et al., 2015), and promoting cross-group friendships (Page-Gould, Mendoza-Denton, & Tropp, 2008). Throughout the chapter, we highlight the importance of the roles of the institution, community, and individuals involved.
Low socio-economic groups (SEG) in Australia suffer poorer diet-related health than the rest of the population. Therefore, it is expected that low SEG are less likely to consume diets conforming to Australian Dietary Guidelines (ADG) than higher SEG. However, dietary intake of low SEG in Australia has not been synthesised methodically. This systematic scoping review aims to explore detailed dietary intake of low SEG in Australia in comparison to higher SEG.
A systematic search of peer-reviewed literature and websites, since 1999. Data were extracted, synthesised and analysed in relation to study populations, dietary assessment methods, food groups studied, socio-economic measures and dietary intake.
Persons of any age and gender, differentiated by a socio-economic measure.
Results from thirty-three included studies confirmed that overall dietary nutritional value/quality tended to be lower in low SEG than higher SEG in Australia. However, findings were inconsistent across studies for all food groups or all socio-economic measures. Large variations were found between study metrics, definitions, dietary assessment methods, granularity of results and conclusions. Quantitative intakes of all ADG food groups by SEG were not reported in most studies and, where reported, were not comparable.
The review showed detailed dietary data are lacking to inform policy and practice and help develop targeted interventions to improve diet-related health of Australian low SEG. There is urgent need for regular, granular assessment of population dietary data to enable comparison of intake between SEG in the context of national food-based dietary guidelines in Australia.
To determine the reliability of streamlined data-gathering techniques for examining the price and affordability of a healthy (recommended) and unhealthy (current) diet. We additionally estimated the price and affordability of diets across socio-economic areas and quantified the influence of different pricing scenarios.
Following the Healthy Diets Australian Standardised Affordability and Pricing (ASAP) protocol, we compared a cross-sectional sample of food and beverage pricing data collected using online data and phone calls (lower-resource streamlined techniques) with data collected in-store from the same retailers.
Food and beverage prices were collected from major supermarkets, fast food and alcohol retailers in eight conveniently sampled areas in Victoria, Australia (n 72 stores), stratified by area-level deprivation and remoteness.
This study did not involve human participants.
The biweekly price of a healthy diet was on average 21 % cheaper ($596) than an unhealthy diet ($721) for a four-person family using the streamlined techniques, which was comparable with estimates using in-store data (healthy: $594, unhealthy: $731). The diet price differential did not vary considerably across geographical areas (range: 18–23 %). Both diets were estimated to be unaffordable for families living on indicative low disposable household incomes and below the poverty line. The inclusion of generic brands notably reduced the prices of healthy and unhealthy diets (≥20 %), rendering both affordable against indicative low disposable household incomes. Inclusion of discounted prices marginally reduced diet prices (3 %).
Streamlined data-gathering techniques are a reliable method for regular, flexible and widespread monitoring of the price and affordability of population diets in areas where supermarkets have an online presence.
Why is the #MeToo movement very active in some countries but not in others? What factors encourage the transnational diffusion of digital feminist activism? Although transnational forces are important, we argue that domestic political opportunity structures play a more significant role than transnational influences in the country-level diffusion of #MeToo. We collected 35,211 global tweets and used Bayesian statistical modeling to test the implications of our theory. Our findings support the idea that as a country better protects its citizens’ political and civil rights and civil liberties, individuals in that country are more likely to engage in the #MeToo movement.
This research communication addresses the hypothesis that Southeast dairy producers' self-reported bulk tank somatic cell count (BTSCC) was associated with producers' response to three statements (1) ‘a troublesome thing about mastitis is the worries it causes me,’ (2) ‘a troublesome thing about mastitis is that cows suffer,’ and (3) ‘my broad goals include taking good care of my cows and heifers.’ Surveys were mailed to producers in Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia (29% response rate, N = 596; final analysis N = 574), as part of a larger survey to assess Southeastern dairy producers' opinions related to BTSCC. Surveys contained 34 binomial (n = 9), Likert scale (n = 7), and descriptive (n = 18) statements targeted at producer self-assessment of herd records, management practices, and BTSCC. Statements 1 and 2 were assessed on a 5-point Likert scale from ‘strongly disagree’ to ‘strongly agree.’ Statement 3 was assessed on a 5-point Likert scale from ‘very unimportant’ to ‘very important.’ Reported mean BTSCC for all participants was 254 500 cells/ml. Separate univariable logistic regressions using generalized linear mixed models (SAS 9.4, Cary, NC, USA) with a random effect of farm, were performed to determine if BTSCC was associated with probability for a producer's response to statements. If BTSCC was significant, forward manual addition was performed until no additional variables were significant (P ≤ 0.05), but included BTSCC, regardless of significance. Bulk tank somatic cell count was associated with ‘a troublesome thing about mastitis is the worries it causes me,’ but not with Statements 2 or 3. This demonstrates that >75% of Southeastern dairy producers are concerned with animal care and cow suffering, regardless of BTSCC. Understanding Southeast producers' emphasis on cow care is necessary to create targeted management tools for herds with elevated BTSCC.
Childhood maltreatment robustly predicts adolescent externalizing behaviors (EB; e.g., violence, delinquency, substance use) and may crystalize patterns of EB by influencing sensitivity to the social environment (e.g., parenting, friendships). In a nationally representative sample of 9,421 adolescents, we modeled latent growth curves of EB from age 13 to 32 years. Next, we explored whether maltreated youth differed from nonmaltreated youth in their sensitivity to parental closeness, friendship involvement, and polymorphisms from dopamine genes linked to EB (dopamine receptors D2 and D4, dopamine transporter). Overall, maltreated youth had significantly higher levels of EB across adolescence and adulthood; however, maltreated and nonmaltreated youth showed similar patterns of EB change over time: violent behavior decreased in adolescence before stabilizing in adulthood, whereas nonviolent delinquency and substance use increased in adolescence before decreasing in the transition to adulthood. Maltreatment reduced sensitivity to parental closeness and friendship involvement, although patterns varied based on type of EB outcome. Finally, none of the environmental effects on EB were significantly moderated by the dopamine polygenic risk score after accounting for multiple testing. These findings underline the enduring effects of early maltreatment and implicate that maltreatment may contribute to long-term risk for EB by influencing children's sensitivity to social relationship factors in adolescence.
The current short communication aimed to provide a new conceptualisation of the policy drivers of inequities in healthy eating and to make a call to action to begin populating this framework with evidence of actions that can be taken to reduce the inequities in healthy eating.
The Healthy and Equitable Eating (HE2) Framework derives from a systems-based analytical approach involving expert workshops.
Academics, government officials and non-government organisations in Australia.
The HE2 Framework extends previous conceptualisations of policy responses to healthy eating to include the social determinants of healthy eating and its social distribution, encompassing policy areas including housing, social protection, employment, education, transport, urban planning, plus the food system and environment.
As the burden of non-communicable diseases continues to grow globally, it is important that governments, practitioners and researchers focus attention on the development and implementation of policies beyond the food system and environment that can address the social determinants of inequities in healthy eating.
Take-home naloxone (THN) reduces deaths from opioid overdose. To increase THN distribution to at-risk emergency department (ED) patients, we explored reasons for patients’ refusing or accepting THN.
In an urban teaching hospital ED, we identified high opioid overdose risk patients according to pre-specified criteria. We offered eligible patients THN and participation in researcher-administered surveys, which inquired about reasons to refuse or accept THN and about THN dispensing location preferences. We analyzed refusal and acceptance reasons in open-ended responses, grouped reasons into categories (absolute versus conditional refusals,) then searched for associations between patient characteristics and reasons.
Of 247 patients offered THN, 193 (78.1%) provided reasons for their decision. Of those included, 69 (35.2%) were female, 91 (47.2%) were under age 40, 61 (31.6%) were homeless, 144 (74.6%) reported injection drug use (IDU), and 131 (67.9%) accepted THN. Of 62 patients refusing THN, 19 (30.7%) felt “not at risk” for overdose, while 28 (45.2%) gave conditional refusal reasons: “too sick,” “in a rush,” or preference to get THN elsewhere. Non-IDU was associated with stating “not at risk,” while IDU, homelessness, and age under 40 were associated with conditional refusals. Among acceptances, 86 (65.7%) mentioned saving others as a reason. Most respondents preferred other dispensing locations beside the ED, whether or not they accepted ED THN.
ED patients refusing THN felt “not at risk” for overdose or felt their ED visit was not the right time or place for THN. Most accepting THN wanted to save others.
The objective of this paper is to present a qualitative study of introducing substance misuse screening using the Screening Brief Intervention and Referral to Treatment (SBIRT) model, in primary care in Abu Dhabi.
Substance misuse in the UAE is an increasing problem. However religious beliefs and fear of legal consequences have prevented this topic from being openly discussed, risk levels identified through screening and treatment options offered.
A controlled trial was undertaken which included a qualitative process study which is reported here. Qualitative interviews with primary care physicians from two intervention clinics were undertaken to explore their views, experiences and attitudes towards substance misuse management in their clinic. Physicians were trained on SBIRT and on the research project process and documentation. At completion of the project, 10 months after the training, physicians (n=17) were invited to participate in an interview to explore their experiences of training and implementation of SBIRT. Interviews were recorded and transcribed. Inductive thematic coding was applied.
In total, 11 physicians were interviewed and three main themes emerged: (1) The SBIRT screening project, (2) cultural issues and (3) patient follow-up. Findings revealed a general willingness toward the concept of screening and delivering brief interventions in primary care although increased workload and uncertainties about remuneration for the service may be a barrier to future implementation. There was a perceived problem of substance misuse that was not currently being met and a strong perception that patients were not willing to reveal substance use due cultural barriers and fear of police involvement. In conclusion this qualitative process evaluation provided essential insight into implementing SBIRT in the Middle East. In conclusion, despite physician willingness and a clinical need for a substance misuse care pathway, the reluctance among patients to admit to substance use in this culture needs to be addressed to enable successful implementation.
This project evaluated the effectiveness of screening brief intervention and referral for treatment (SBIRT) in primary care in Abu Dhabi to manage patients with problematic substance use. This study aimed to determine whether: (i) training primary care physicians on the SBIRT model increased the identification of patients using substances at a harmful, hazardous or dependent level; (ii) training improved physicians’ knowledge, attitudes and beliefs in self-efficacy in managing substance use.
Substance use is increasing in the United Arab Emirates yet there has been no formal primary care intervention. SBIRT was considered an appropriate model given its endorsement by the WHO.
A controlled trial (two intervention and two matched control clinics) was undertaken. Intervention physicians (n=17) were trained in SBIRT. Physicians’ attitudes were measured before and after training and eight months after implementation. Target recruitment was 900 patients. Inclusion criteria were: consenting UAE national, ⩾18 years, using the ‘walk-in’ primary care clinic. Patient data was collected by physician-administered questionnaire. Prevalence of drug use was measured through electronic patient records.
A total of 906 patients were screened, aged 18–82 years and 496 (55%) were female. Of these, 5.7% reported use of amphetamine, 3.9% alcohol, 3.3%, sedatives, 1.7% opioids and 1.1% cannabis. In all, 21 people had a moderate/high ASSIST score and received a brief intervention, but did not attend follow-up; three high-risk people were referred for specialist treatment. Physicians’ attitudes towards patients with problematic substance use and providing treatment improved after training, but returned to pre-training levels after eight months. Including the 21 individuals identified from intervention screening, the prevalence of substance use increased to 0.208% (95% CI 0.154–0.274), significantly higher than in control clinics (P<0.001).
In conclusion, physicians were generally positive towards SBIRT and SBIRT increased recorded drug related conditions at a practice level. However, poor patient attendance at follow-up requires investigation.
Convenience and cost impact on people’s meal decisions. Takeaway and pre-prepared foods save preparation time but may contribute to poorer-quality diets. Analysing the impact of time on relative cost differences between meals of varying convenience contributes to understanding the barrier of time to selecting healthy meals.
Six popular New Zealand takeaway meals were identified from two large national surveys and compared with similar, but healthier, home-made and home-assembled meals that met nutrition targets consistent with New Zealand Eating and Activity Guidelines. The cost of each complete meal, cost per kilogram, and confidence intervals of the cost of each meal type were calculated. The time-inclusive cost was calculated by adding waiting or preparation time cost at the minimum wage.
A large urban area in New Zealand.
For five of six popular meals, the mean cost of the home-made and home-assembled meals was cheaper than the takeaway meals. When the cost of time was added, all home-assembled meal options were the cheapest and half of the home-made meals were at least as expensive as the takeaway meals. The home-prepared meals were designed to provide less saturated fat and Na and more vegetables than their takeaway counterparts; however, the home-assembled meals provided more Na than the home-made meals.
Healthier home-made and home-assembled meals were, except one, cheaper options than takeaways. When the cost of time was added, either the home-made or the takeaway meal was the most expensive. This research questions whether takeaways are better value than home-prepared meals.
This research employs an agricultural sector model that links seasonal crop production with disaggregated livestock production sectors, in tandem with observed quarterly data on U.S. drought conditions to assess the long term economic implications of drought for U.S beef cattle producers. Short term impacts show increases in feed costs as well as increases in cattle slaughter resulting from drought-induced culling. The price of live cattle decreases in the short run; however, feed prices remain above baseline levels, and beef cattle breeding inventories decline in the long run, leading to fewer calves moving through the supply chain.
This study reports findings from the administration of a social problem-solving training (SPST) intervention to juvenile detainees in the Connecticut Youth Detainee Program. SPST is a cognitive behavioral intervention that teaches children and youth how to more effectively cope with interpersonal stress and conflict. In the current study, we tested whether SPST could decrease depressive symptoms in a sample of detained adolescent offenders. The study used a randomized-control design with detention staff administering the intervention. The results showed that SPST, as a main effect, was not more effective in reducing depressive symptoms than treatment as usual. However, the effectiveness of SPST was moderated by fluid intelligence. Juvenile detainees with high intelligence scores were most likely to benefit from SPST compared to treatment as usual. It was surprising that, for those with lower intelligence scores, SPST increased depressive symptoms relative to treatment as usual. These results help fill a critical need for intervention effectiveness data on juvenile detainees and indicate that SPST may not be useful for reducing outcomes such as depression.
To undertake a systematic review to determine similarities and differences in metrics and results between recently and/or currently used tools, protocols and methods for monitoring Australian healthy food prices and affordability.
Electronic databases of peer-reviewed literature and online grey literature were systematically searched using the PRISMA approach for articles and reports relating to healthy food and diet price assessment tools, protocols, methods and results that utilised retail pricing.
National, state, regional and local areas of Australia from 1995 to 2015.
Assessment tools, protocols and methods to measure the price of ‘healthy’ foods and diets.
The search identified fifty-nine discrete surveys of ‘healthy’ food pricing incorporating six major food pricing tools (those used in multiple areas and time periods) and five minor food pricing tools (those used in a single survey area or time period). Analysis demonstrated methodological differences regarding: included foods; reference households; use of availability and/or quality measures; household income sources; store sampling methods; data collection protocols; analysis methods; and results.
‘Healthy’ food price assessment methods used in Australia lack comparability across all metrics and most do not fully align with a ‘healthy’ diet as recommended by the current Australian Dietary Guidelines. None have been applied nationally. Assessment of the price, price differential and affordability of healthy (recommended) and current (unhealthy) diets would provide more robust and meaningful data to inform health and fiscal policy in Australia. The INFORMAS ‘optimal’ approach provides a potential framework for development of these methods.