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‘The Rings of Power’: Who Is That Guy?

Six episodes in, the true identities of several new characters in Amazon’s “Lord of the Rings” series remain unknown. Our resident Tolkienologist speculates.

via NYT > Arts > Television
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Play Every Day update: Want to buy a healthier drink? The claims on the front label don’t always match the facts on the back

Get Out and Play. Every Day.

Want to buy a healthier drink? The claims on the front label don’t always match the facts on the back

AUGUST 24, 2022 — Want to improve your chances of going to the store and buying a healthy drink? Spend more time reading the back of the label than the front. When walking the aisles in a grocery store, all we can see is the front of packaging for foods and drinks. The front labels don’t always have the facts, and instead are likely to show images and words that imply the drink is healthier than it is:
  • The drink includes natural flavors.
  • It has 100% Vitamin C.
  • The front label shows pictures of fruits and vegetables that aren’t actually in the drink.
Look for images or words on front labels that may imply a drink is healthier than it is.
Look for images or words on front labelsthat may imply a drink is healthier than it is. We shop with the best of intentions, but the front of labels can mislead us. Families buy certain drinks because they believe those drinks are healthy based on words or images they see on the labels. Many times, those drinks actually have high amounts of added sugar. Serving these drinks to kids, often every day, can lead to . In 2022, lead authors from the Harvard, Johns Hopkins and University of North Carolina Schools of Public Health that showed most fruit drinks and flavored waters purchased by families with children ages 5 and younger included words or images on the front labels “that may lead consumers to believe the beverages are healthy and natural.” It’s not a common practice for all of us to turn those drinks around (about 40% of Americans say they ). Adding that step in the store, however, will reveal more about a food or drink. The Nutrition Facts label on the back of a drink gives the true list of ingredients and — which can be . “Alaska’s has been creating messages to help Alaska parents spot misleading words and pictures on sugary drinks and then pick healthier drinks for their families, like water and plain milk,” said Katie Reilly, program manager of Alaska’s . “A survey of Alaska mothers shows that about 1 out of 3 preschoolers drinks some type of a sweetened beverage every day. Cutting back on added sugar helps kids prevent cavities and unhealthy weight gain during their early years and type 2 diabetes and heart disease as they grow up.”

Most fruit drink labels have claims that could be misleading

Alaska parents say sweetened fruits drinks are a common type of drink they serve their young children. That includes drinks sold as sweetened powdered mixes or liquids in boxes, bottles, cartons or jugs. The Play Every Day campaign has been creating and to help parents better understand and spot them in stores, and then choose healthier drinks like water or plain milk instead. Here’s what the earlier-mentioned showed after the Schools of Public Health examined claims and images on the front labels of drinks bought by hundreds of households with children ages 5 and younger:
  • Most fruit drinks (73%) made claims about nutrients that could be misleading. One of the most common claims was that the drink contained some amount of Vitamin C.
  • Almost half of fruit drinks (44%) included images or text on the front label that appealed to children.
  • Almost half of fruit drinks (47%) included claims like “contains juice” or “made with whole fruit.”
  • Almost all fruit drinks (94%) showed a picture of a fruit or vegetable on the front label. Most of these drinks, however, did not have fruit or vegetable juice or juice concentrate as a first or second main ingredient.
“Strikingly, 40% of fruit drinks and 88% of flavored waters depicted a fruit/vegetable on the (front of the label) that was not included at all in the ingredient list as a juice or concentrate,” the study said.

Better health comes when you cut back on added sugar

Sugary drinks of all kinds are for most people’s diets – regardless of their age. Limiting added sugar in drinks and foods can improve health, which is why many health organizations recommend cutting back on sugar. agree sugary drinks aren’t recommended for children ages 5 and younger. For the best health, the recommend children younger than 2 have foods and drinks without any added sugar. The healthiest drinks for children ages 1 and older are water, plain white milk or fortified unsweetened soy milk. These national guidelines also recommend that older children and adults limit added sugar to a small amount — less than 10 percent of the total calories they consume every day. That means an adult consuming 2,000 calories a day should limit daily added sugar to 200 calories or 50 grams of sugar —which is the same as 12 ½ teaspoons of sugar. “You can drink 12 1/2 teaspoons of sugar very quickly,” Reilly said. “Just one sugary drink, like a 20-ounce bottle of soda or a fruit drink, can have about 16 teaspoons of added sugar. That’s more sugar than is recommended in an entire day for most of us. Checking the backs of labels and looking for the amount of added sugar can help us choose drinks and foods with no or low amounts of sugar.” Choose foods and drinks without added sweeteners. You’ll know that’s the case if the “Includes Added Sugars” line says 0 grams.Choose foods and drinks without added sweeteners. You’ll know that’s the case if the “Includes Added Sugars” line says 0 grams.

via Stored Xss
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Are You Ready to Be Surveilled Like a Sex Worker?

FOSTA/SESTA laws deplatformed sex workers and set the stage to overturn Roe v. Wade.

via Wired
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Why is English spelling so tricky?

English is like a painting, where the spelling conventions weren’t established all at once, but added on in layers. When you dig into each word, you learn a lot about the language!

via Duolingo Blog
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7 Tips to Work Smarter in Google Docs

Try these productivity tricks and get more done in less time.

via Wired
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Play Every Day update: Getting kids back in the game

Get Out and Play. Every Day.Having trouble viewing this email? .

Getting kids back in the game:

New Alaska program removes cost and other hurdles preventing kids from joining activities

APRIL 27, 2022 — Teachers like Abe Salmon can see when their students need something that’s keeping them out of an activity. The physical education teacher in Wasilla knew kids would be cold when he took them outside for class, given many didn’t have coats. As the wrestling coach at Wasilla’s Redington Sr. Junior and Senior High School, Salmon could see some students were lacking a key piece of gear: special shoes that can cost up to $100. Finding the money to buy the coat or cover those wrestling shoes was too much for many families. “Sometimes even that is a barrier to competing,” Salmon said. “If I can take that barrier out the way, I will.” Salmon wanted to put these kids at ease, help them not worry about the cost. Join the wrestling team, he said, and we’ll figure out the need for shoes once we get rolling. Salmon figured it out by working with a new program in Alaska called the , which is run through Alaska’s nonprofit Healthy Futures. Throughout the year, staff consider and approve to provide scholarships that help children ages 5–18 participate in activities, buy sports equipment, get basic clothing items and more. This winter, Salmon filled out an application to cover the cost of shoes and new protective head gear for his school’s wrestlers. The next month, his application was approved. This year, paying for the cost of shoes wouldn’t prevent a student from joining Salmon’s wrestling team. And that’s the whole point of the Game Changer program: Remove whatever hurdle is blocking a child from participating, and then get them back in the game. A group of two dozen New Halen Runners practice for a cross-country meet.The Basics program provided running shoes to help a rural school host its first cross country running meet.

Creating the Game Changer program

The goal of Game Changer isn’t new in Alaska, but the name is. During the past year, took over a long-running program that was called The Basics and then expanded it, renaming it the Game Changer fund. The Basics was a nonprofit program founded and run for almost a decade by Pam Skogstad. Skogstad, who lives in Hope, is a physical education specialist with about 30 years of experience adapting PE for children of all abilities in Alaska’s public schools. From the beginning, The Basics set out to improve equity in terms of youth participating in healthy physical activities. What could it provide to ensure more kids could participate in activities and sports? Skogstad knew the need was there for a program like The Basics. A nurse at a Mat-Su school let Skogstad know a student got off the bus wearing only socks. Another student wore bags taped around their shoes to keep them from falling off. The Basics worked with school districts and professionals across Alaska, including counselors, teachers and nurses. Those school leaders would hear about a child in need and request help through The Basics. Each time, the request was discreet, minimizing the chance a child would feel singled out or recognized as someone in need of shoes, coats or other items. Five MatSu students line up together in the school gym to show their brightly colored sneakers to the camera.The Basics program sent gym shoes to elementary-age students who needed them in Mat-Su Borough schools. Between 2012 and 2021, The Basics helped 10,000 students in school districts from Dillingham to Kenai to Mat-Su. The Basics was able to fill these needs due to funding and support from partners, including the Mat-Su Health Foundation, ConocoPhillips, GCI, and others. Over the years, The Basics supported so many students that success stories started stacking up. A rural Alaska school needed gear to outfit a cross country running team. If they had that gear, they could compete and host the school’s first invitational cross country meet. The Basics provided the team with shoes and the meet was scheduled. “Being able to put on a meet has immediate and long-term benefits for youth, their families and communities,” said Kayla Williamson, who worked with The Basics. An Alaska wrestling team had enough students to compete, but they couldn’t afford the gear. The team was from a Title 1 high school, which means the school serves a high percentage of students from families with lower incomes. The Basics provided wrestling shoes and gear to the team. “The team went on to win the state championship,” Williamson said. Winning a championship is success enough, but Williamson said that win can lead to other wins for student athletes. It could improve their chances of earning a scholarship for college, building healthy habits and simply boosting confidence. In recent years, The Basics faced challenges staffing its volunteer board. Skogstad and board member Rick Hansen looked for a way to continue the work through another organization. “I couldn’t just walk away from the need,” Skogstad said. Hansen helped connect Skogstad with Healthy Futures. Harlow Robinson, executive director for Healthy Futures and the Alaska Sports Hall of Fame, worked with board members to take over the role of The Basics, believing it fit with the Healthy Futures mission to make it easier for all Alaska children to build the healthy habit of daily physical activity. Then Healthy Futures hired Williamson, who had worked with The Basics and would now oversee the Game Changer program for Healthy Futures.
Healthy Futures Logo: Alaska Sports Hall of Fame

How to apply

Healthy Futures considers Game Changer applications throughout the year. Any adult can apply — a teacher, principal, coach, nurse, or parent — but the scholarship must go toward helping a child ages 5–18. Each request must be $500 or less, Williamson said. , which are then considered by a small group that includes a Healthy Futures staff member, a board member of Alaska Sports Hall of Fame, and a representative from Healthy Futures’s partner on the project – Alaska’s News Source. Each application includes a brief summary of the need, how the scholarship will be used, and academic accomplishments for the students involved. Needs can vary, which means one application may ask for covering the cost of a bus trip to a cross country running meet, and another may ask for help flying a sports team to a competition they otherwise couldn’t afford to attend. Applications could request help to pay for a student to take a class that builds their skills in a physical activity, or could request gear, like shoes and other clothing. Sometimes, just one pair of shoes is all it takes to open up possibilities.

via Stored Xss
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Two simple tricks for remembering what you've learned on Duolingo

Every day, learners answer around 300,000 Review Exercises! Our analysts looked at learner behavior to see what study habits lead to better lesson recall.

via Duolingo Blog
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Why You Gravitate to Puzzles When You’re Depressed

Puzzle games keep our minds occupied, even in our darkest moments. Here’s why they make you feel better, more capable, and more optimistic about life.

via Wired
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Denis Villeneuve on Dune: ‘I Was Really a Maniac’

The director has wanted to adapt Frank Herbert’s book since he was a teenager. Now he’s finished (the first half of) what he hopes will be the ultimate Dune.

via Wired
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The Epic Journey to ‘The Underground Railroad’

The Epic Journey to ‘The Underground Railroad’ How Barry Jenkins and his band of indie filmmakers made television’s most ambitious take on American slavery since “Roots.”

via NYT > Arts > Television
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