News Above the Noise—Week of July 09, 2023
Editor's Note: Every week, The Sunday Paper's team of journalists sifts through the news to make sense of what's happening in the world and provide hope for your week to come. We find what Rises Above the Noise and do our best to highlight what we think matters. If you’d like to read more in-depth, please note that while we do our best to feature articles that are not behind a paywall, some of the news pieces we recommend require their own subscriptions beyond our control.
1. FDA Approves New Alzheimer's Drug
This week, the FDA granted full approval to a new Alzheimer’s drug called lecanemab (sold under the brand name Lequembi)—the first time such a clearance has been granted to a therapy that changes the course of the disease. In a clinical trial, the drug slowed cognitive decline by 27 percent over 18 months compared with a placebo. Yet while only a subset of the 6 million Americans who suffer from Alzheimer’s may benefit from lecanemab, it holds enormous promise. Read more about this newly approved drug and what it might mean for Alzheimer’s patients here.
2. Is Threads Really a 'Twitter Killer'?
Twitter has long ruled the text-based social media space, but Meta’s newly-released challenger, Threads, poses the first significant threat to Twitter’s reign. After Elon Musk took over Twitter in October of last year, the platform underwent some not-so-popular changes leading to apps like Mastadon, Hive Social, and Blue Sky to take their shot, but none had the momentum that threads has had in the days since it launched. Does Threads have what it takes to stick the landing? Find out more here.
3. The WHO is About to Declare Aspartame Can Cause Cancer
This month, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (a branch of the World Health Organization) plans to release the results of new safety data on aspartame, a common artificial sweetener. So, how did this possibly carcinogenic ingredient make it into our food source in the first place? And is this new guidance from the WHO something all of us should take seriously? Click here for the answers to these questions and more.
4. More Americans are Retiring Than Ever Before
It’s no secret that America’s population is aging. While the implications of this on our health care system are widely reported, its impact on our workforce—and the resulting consequences on the economy—is something fewer of us consider. However, as the baby-boomer generation ages and retires, they’re driving the worker-to-retiree ratio lower than ever. The result? Programs such as Social Security and Medicare, both of which support older Americans by taxing current workers—are facing new threats. For more on this story, click here.
5. Feeling Ragey? It Could Be a Sign of Perimenopause
While depression and anxiety are common and well known symptoms of the hormonal transition known as perimenopause, clinicians are increasingly reporting that their patients are complaining of rage. Yet because rage isn’t a clinical symptom (it’s often defined as extreme irritability or anger) many women are left with big, scary emotions they don’t understand. For more on what experts are learning about the rage many women experience during the years leading up to menopause, and how it can be dealt with, click here.