I like milk. You probably do, too.

I've had good milk, cold milk, thin milk, chunky milk (don't ask), chocolate milk, banana milk, strawberry milk, unpasteurized milk, and even sour milk (to this day, I will not drink milk without smelling it first to make sure it's not sour).

And, at the risk of getting arrested, I've had some bad milk.

And just like that, a warrant for my arrest may be getting processed right now. See, in Utah, it's illegal for milk consumers to “unfairly discriminate” against milk distributors and criticize the grade or quality of the substance.

Yep, they can cuff you for that.

And while there are a handful of pretty good laws taking effect (as of Monday, Jan. 1), it's hard to believe there are still laws in Utah like these:

  • Throwing a snowball could result in a $50 fine in Provo
  • Riding a bike without touching the handlebars could result in fines
  • Hurling missiles (or anything, for that matter) at buses is a third-degree felony (law enforcement is exempt as long as it's within the scope of their duties).
  • While boxing in the Beehive State, no striking of the Adam's apple, groin, eyes, and temple of the head are allowed. Also, no biting.

Fortunately, there are a couple of good laws that just went active in this new year:

  • Dating apps in Utah must have the disclaimer that background checks have not been done.
  • Electric vehicles must now pay a 12.5% tax on charging stations to help pay for road upkeep (a tax usually collected at gas stations when we fill up)
  • Good news here: Utahns will save two cents a gallon at the gas pump until 2028 -- the legislature's effort to help fight inflation
  • More good news for young families: Utahns with kids 3-years old and younger will receive a tax credit of about a thousand bucks per kid to help with childcare expenses

Oh, and Utah's new flag is now official. I like it. What do you think?


How We Can Stop This New Epidemic: Type 2 Diabetes

Photo by Myriam Zilles on Unsplash
Photo by Myriam Zilles on Unsplash

Type 1 diabetes used to be rare ... and it still is.

But Type 2 diabetes, the same blood-sugar disease but with a different cause, is not rare,

In fact, there's a good chance you know someone with Type 2 diabetes and an even better chance that you or someone you love has pre-diabetes and doesn't even know it.

You've probably heard the stories about how Sir. Frederik Banting, a research scientist, discovered insulin and the potential use it had for treating diabetes, how he could have been a millionaire, but flatly refused to patent the cure. His desire was for insulin to be cheap or free for all who suffered from diabetes.

He was later awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts.

He passed away more than 80 years ago and doubtfully never could have seen this modern epidemic of Type 2 diabetes brought on by obesity and sugar consumption. Here are some staggering numbers (from diabetesresearch.org):

  • 37.3 million people, or 11.3% of the U.S. population, have diabetes. An estimated 28.7 million people had diagnosed diabetes. Approximately 8.6 million people have diabetes but have not yet been diagnosed.
  • 26.4 million people aged 65 years or older (48.8%) have prediabetes.
  • Diabetes is the leading cause of new cases of blindness among adults aged 18–64 years.
  • As many as 80 percent of people who have prediabetes don't know they have it.

Perhaps the best news about prediabetes is it's easily detectable with a simple blood test.

The other good news is that you can actually prevent the onset of Type 2 diabetes before it arrives by simply getting in better shape.

"Truthfully, if you are prediabetic and lose just 5- to 7-percent of your body weight, you can stop Type 2 diabetes before it ever arrives," said SWUPHD director Dr. David Blodgett.

That means a person weighing 200 pounds needs to lose just 10 pounds or so to prevent this crippling infirmity.

So that's it, we can find out if we're getting diabetes with an easy test and we can stop it in its tracks with a little bit of diet and exercise.

The link to the prediabetes screening test on the SWUhealth.org website is here.

Some other scary diabetes facts:

  • Diabetes was the seventh leading cause of death in the United States in 2017 based on the 83,564 death certificates in which diabetes was listed as the underlying cause of death.
  • Diabetes was listed as the underlying or contributing cause of death on 270,702 death certificates in 2017.
  • In 2017, the total estimated cost of diagnosed diabetes in the U.S. was $327 billion.
  • Without insulin, the body’s cells would be starved, causing dehydration and destruction of body tissue.
  • Many people with type 2 diabetes can control their blood glucose by following a healthy meal plan and a program of regular physical activity, losing excess weight, and taking medications.

Nartional Diabetes Foundation website

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