People who consume high amounts of ultra-processed foods report significantly more adverse mental health symptoms, according to new research published in Public Health Nutrition. Ultra-processed foods consist mostly of manufactured ingredients that have been extracted from foods and usually contain flavorings, colorings and other additives. Ultra-processed foods are often high in sugar, fat, and salt, and they frequently lack important nutrients like fiber and vitamins. A number of studies have found that ultra-processed foods can have negative consequences for physical health, but less is kno...
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Ma Yu launches her makeshift polystyrene boat into a Yangon creek for another day of trawling the filthy waters for plastic and tin cans with her team of "river cleaners".
Around 10 others join her in the dawn light, driven to work the fetid grey-brown murk of Pazundaung creek by the economic crisis that has gripped Myanmar since the 2021 military coup.
They gather recyclable materials to sell to traders, their only source of income since losing their jobs after the putsch that upended the economy and sparked widespread unrest.
"There was no job for me on the land and I'm responsible for my children and my husband's healthcare," the 36-year-old Ma Yu told AFP, her cheeks and forehead daubed with the sandalwood "thanakha" paste popularly used in Myanmar to ward off the blazing sun.
"So I rented some polystyrene sheets and I went onto the creek with my neighbor. On the first day we managed to collect some plastic and cans to sell. We were happy," she said.
Myanmar's economy has been battered by the fallout of the coup, with more than a million people losing their jobs, according to the International Labour Organization.
Ma Ngal, 41, came to the river after losing her job selling vegetables and fish at a Yangon stall, with her carpenter husband also unable to find regular work.
"I didn't tell my parents and family members that we are doing this work," said Ma Ngal.
"But they found out, and I had to explain to them that I'm doing this for my family."
On a good day a picker can find trash worth 30,000 kyat ($10), but more often the take-home pay is around $3.
"Before we started working there was lots of plastic, cans and bottles on the creek," says Kyu Kyu Khine, 39, who used to collect trash from Yangon's streets.
The pickers try to time their working days with the tides -- floating downstream in search of more trash when it ebbs and riding it back upstream at the end of a shift.
But the tidal surges can be treacherous, says Ma Yu, who was knocked off her boat on one of her early forays onto the water.
"Sometimes I think that if something happens to me, I'm all alone here and I can't do anything," she said.
The waters also carry regular reminders of the breakdown of order in Yangon, where residents say crime is surging in the aftermath of the coup.
The pickers regularly see dead bodies floating on the water, said Ma Yu.
"It's not an easy job but... the important thing for me is that my children don't starve," she said.
Her fellow picker Ma Ngal says there are some lighter moments.
"Some people joke with us when they see us working. They say 'here come the municipal team, they know how to clean up the river'."
© 2023 AFP
Speaking to MSNBC's Lawrence O'Donnell, Robert Mueller's senior prosecutor Andrew Weissmann walked through the four major criminal cases Donald Trump now faces in court.
Weissmann said it was "remarkable" that a former president of the United States would be facing so many criminal investigations that are headed toward prosecution at the same time.
"That's worth taking a moment just to realize the breathtaking nature of that inquiry," Weissmann said. "The caveat is, we actually don't know everything that the prosecutors know. We're making educated guesses. But we do have quite a bit of information about some of these investigations."
Putting them in order, he began with the Mar-a-Lago documents case.
It's the "one that we know, probably, the most about, and it seems really strong. What I mean by that is that you are looking for evidence of criminal intent, which is almost always in white-collar cases, you're looking for what is proof of the intent of the defendant. And Donald Trump, through his actions and his statements, has made that case very strong."
He explained that there are always several reasons not to bring a case, but that isn't the legal standard. He said a case should be brought if it is "meritorious" and "righteous, even if there is a risk of loss."
"The Georgia case is also very strong," Weissmann continued. "It's hard to separate the Georgia case from the federal so-called Jan. 6th case because the Georgia case is just one component of that. Except, the Jan. 6 case brings in so much more conduct than what the former president did in Georgia."
He went on to say that it might end up taking more time at the federal level than in Georgia, where things are moving more swiftly.
"We do see some signs of life in the Manhattan District Attorney's Office. I've always been saying that's the sleeper case to keep your eye on, particularly because the state cases can stick. No matter who is president after Joe Biden, if it were to be a Republican, there is no ability to pardon for a state case. So, keeping your eye on Georgia and Manhattan is really key."
Finally, he noted that the hush money payments to Stormy Daniels, which sent Michael Cohen to prison, is another major case.
the 4 criminal cases against Trump www.youtube.com
The Kansas City Star reports that the Urban Christian Academy announced its support for LGBTQ rights last year and, by the end of the year, it had lost 80 percent of its funding.
"Before publicly supporting the LGBTQ community, Urban Christian Academy raised nearly $334,000 in December 2021," the Kansas City Star writes. "This past December, donations dropped to $14,800. All eight churches that helped fund the school withdrew their support."
Urban Christian Academy co-founder Kalie Callaway-George tells the Kansas City Star that she has no regrets about her decision to support LGBTQ rights even though it is forcing her school to close its doors.
“We find ourselves in a season where we are running on very few resources and each time attention is brought to the issue we are bombarded by hate which further distracts from our ability to care for the scholars we have in our care,” she said.
Darnisha Harris, a parent who had children at the school, told the Kansas City Star that she is heartbroken to see the angry backlash.
"They don’t teach our kids anything about sexuality," she said. "The only thing I’ve heard my kids talk about is being kind and treating others with respect and taking accountability. It really, really hurt my feelings that people would be ignorant like that."