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I work and write at the intersection of technology, media, and society.

I've been a startup founder, mission-driven VC, engineer, and product lead. Right now I'm Chief Technology Officer at The 19th.

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19thnews.org

 

How our microbiome is shaped by family, friends and even neighbours

“People living in the same household share more than just a roof. Be they family or flatmate, housemates tend to have the same microbes colonizing their bodies, and the longer the cohabitation, the more similar these microbiomes become. The conclusion raises the possibility that diseases linked to microbiome dysfunction, including cancer, diabetes and obesity, could be partly transmissible.”

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Gas stove health concerns add urgency to calls for changes in public housing

“Alarmingly, in a focus group conducted by the Public Health Law Center in Chicago, nearly 100 percent of public housing participants said they have also turned on their gas stoves to stay warm on cold days, which is an added danger for residents.”

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Population Attributable Fraction of Gas Stoves and Childhood Asthma in the United States

“The proportion of childhood asthma that could be theoretically prevented if gas stove use was not present (e.g., state-specific PAFs) varied by state (Illinois = 21.1%; California = 20.1%; New York = 18.8%; Massachusetts = 15.4%; Pennsylvania = 13.5%). Our results quantify the US public health burden attributed to gas stove use and childhood asthma.”

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Lead and Cadmium Could Be in Your Dark Chocolate

“The chocolate industry has been grappling with ways to lower those levels. To see how much of a risk these favorite treats pose, Consumer Reports scientists recently measured the amount of heavy metals in 28 dark chocolate bars. They detected cadmium and lead in all of them.”

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Why colds and flu viruses are more common in winter

“In fact, reducing the temperature inside the nose by as little as 9 degrees Fahrenheit (5 degrees Celsius) kills nearly 50% of the billions of virus and bacteria-fighting cells in the nostrils.” Aside from blocking droplets, masks make you healthier because they’re like “a sweater for your nose”.

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Electric car sales drive toward cleaner air, less mortality

“With fresher air [from EVs], in 27 years greater Los Angeles will have 1,163 fewer premature deaths annually, corresponding to $12.61 billion in improved economic health benefits. Greater New York City could see 576 fewer such deaths annually and have $6.24 billion in associated economic gains and health benefits, while Chicago could have 276 fewer deaths and gain about $3 billion in financial well-being.”

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Brains of post-pandemic teens show signs of faster ageing, study finds

“After matching 64 participants in each group for factors including age and sex, the team found that physical changes in the brain that occurred during adolescence – such as thinning of the cortex and growth of the hippocampus and the amygdala – were greater in the post-lockdown group than in the pre-pandemic group, suggesting such processes had sped up. In other words, their brains had aged faster.”

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Eli Lilly CEO says insulin tweet flap “probably” signals need to bring down cost

“"It probably highlights that we have more work to do to bring down the cost of insulin for more people,” Ricks said of the Twitter fury.” Amazing that this is what they needed.

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Microplastics found in human breast milk for the first time

“We would like to advise pregnant women to pay greater attention to avoiding food and drink packaged in plastic, cosmetics and toothpastes containing microplastics, and clothes made of synthetic fabrics.”

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Hair Straighteners May Pose a Small Risk for Uterine Cancer, Study Finds

“For women in the study who had never used hair straighteners, the risk of developing uterine cancer by the age of 70 was 1.64 percent, the research found, while the rate for frequent users of straighteners was more than doubled at 4.05 percent.”

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Wildfire Smoke May Carry Deadly Fungi Long Distances

“For years now, researchers have understood that wildfire smoke, and the noxious gases and soot particles it carries, isn’t merely an unpleasant experience that forces people to shut windows and herd children indoors. It’s a significant health hazard that not only triggers asthma and breathing problems, but can harm immune systems for years.”

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State abortion bans are preventing cancer patients from getting chemotherapy

““I don’t know anybody that would feel comfortable treating a pregnant patient with cancer because I don’t feel like they’re nearly dead enough,” Zahedi-Spung said. “The threshold that I am holding in order to provide abortion care is basically almost dead to try to avoid being arrested and jailed.””

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I’m a psychologist – and I believe we’ve been told devastating lies about mental health

“If a plant were wilting we wouldn’t diagnose it with “wilting-plant-syndrome” – we would change its conditions. Yet when humans are suffering under unliveable conditions, we’re told something is wrong with us, and expected to keep pushing through. To keep working and producing, without acknowledging our hurt.”

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U.S. life expectancy drops sharply, the second consecutive decline

“American Indian and Alaskan Native people have experienced a particularly precipitous drop in life expectancy since 2019, going from 71.8 to 65.2 years. This kind of loss is similar to the plunge seen for all Americans after the Spanish Flu.”

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Kids Born Near Fracking Sites More Likely to Have Leukemia, Study Says

“Children who are born near fracking sites are as much as three times more likely to be diagnosed with leukemia later on, according to new Yale research.”

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For years, Black trans women have been told their life expectancy is 35 years. That’s false.

“Willis says the statistic once communicated an urgency in the community. Today, she thinks trans people need more complicated stories.”

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Experts debunk monkeypox myths as misinformation spreads

“Can monkeypox spread on the subway? Can it kill like COVID-19? Experts respond to monkeypox myths and misconceptions.”

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