🏥 Shocking cancer data 📜 Ancient surgery 🐤 Bird hack

🏥 Shocking cancer data 📜 Ancient surgery 🐤 Bird hack

A new, first-of-its-kind global study found that almost half (44.4% to be exact) of all cancer deaths are caused by preventable risk factors.

The best news, hacks, & facts from the past week!
September 9, 2022
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Hope everyone had a nice Labor Day weekend! I was on the lovely island of Kiawah, SC. It was my *checks calendar* 8th wedding of the summer! What can I say - I love love.

But that's neither here nor there. Back to Labor Day. It's a strange holiday.

No one knows who created it. It was either started by a guy named Matt Maguire or a guy named Peter McGuire. It's sort of rooted in an 1882 NYC union parade, and sort of rooted in an 1886 Chicago bomb explosion.

What I DO know is, according to The National Hot Dog & Sausage Council, LDW marks the end of hot dog season. For a small subset of Americans, that has to be devastating.

As always, please forward IQNEWS to a friend if you're a fan!


Nearly 1/2 of cancer is preventable

image: howstuffworks

A new, first-of-its-kind global study found that almost half (44.4% to be exact) of all cancer deaths are caused by preventable risk factors.

The study's conductors, publishing their work in The Lancet in August, used 2019 data on cancer cases and deaths across 200+ countries. They found excess drinking, smoking, and high body-mass index (BMI) to be the top three avoidable risk factors.

Unhealthy diets, unsafe sex, and workplace exposure to carcinogenic substances like asbestos were also found to meaningfully contribute.

While these findings confirm results from past studies, they do so at a greater scale and with notable added insights...

  • The issue is bigger with men. Over half of all male cancer deaths are preventable versus ~1/3 of all female cancer deaths.
  • The issue is getting worse. From 2010 to 2019, preventable deaths increased by 20%. Excess weight accounted for the largest percentage of increase.
  • COVID's impact here will be mixed. On one hand, preventable cancer deaths will occur due to COVID-related diagnostic delays. On the other hand, work-from-home has reduced workers' exposure to harmful chemicals.

For society, this study is a step in the right direction. The data is useful for policymakers creating cancer-control plans (e.g., tobacco tax structures).

For individuals, cancer epidemiologist Rudolf Kaaks puts it simply and well: “Don’t smoke, don’t get overweight, and don’t drink too much alcohol.”


Ancient surgery, Earth 2.0, moth pheromones...

image: newscientist
Ancient Surgery

A 31,000-year-old child's skeleton was found with the foot cleanly removed. The bones show the child survived for years afterward, making this the earliest known amputation.


Two potentially habitable "super-Earth" planets have been discovered. Both are larger than Earth, and one may be the second most habitable exoplanet ever discovered.

Pot Smokers

A new study has found that, contrary to popular belief, smoking weed doesn’t appear to make people lazy and apathetic. Even the researchers themselves were shocked!

Pest Control

Scientists bioengineered plants to produce moth pheromones for pest control. These cheap pheromones may help the ag industry move away from chemicals like RoundUp.


A new study found that how parents talk to their kids about math is key. Well-meaning comments ultimately hinder children’s math motivation and achievement over time.


Not so fast, bird bandits!

image: reddit

This hack is likely not relevant to 75% of readers. But it's just too clever not to share.

If you have a garden of berries, you're likely annoyed on a regular basis by birds stealing your fruit before you can harvest it.

One strawberry gardener devised an elegant solution. She...

  1. Found rocks that were roughly the same size and shape of strawberries.
  2. Painted the rocks red.
  3. Applied a coat of craft varnish to protect the paint and add some shine.
  4. Scattered the rocks around her strawberry plants in her garden.

The result? Birds saw the brightly-colored rocks, perceived them to be fruit, and started pecking at them. Turns out, birds HATE pecking super hard surfaces.

Thus, the birds made a mental note that her berry crop was a bust, and moved on. This same trick can work with any berry, and likely other garden crops too!

  1. Of all the bodily functions that could be contagious, be thankful it’s a yawn.
  2. Social media has made high school reunions unnecessary.
  3. The human body is incredibly silent for all that’s going on inside of it.
  4. Wild animals can develop mental illnesses, but we just assume they're being wild.
  5. Queen Elizabeth’s birth was announced via a telegram and her death via a Tweet.

Naval Ravikant: “Desire is a contract that you make with yourself to be unhappy until you get what you want.”

Today I learned that dolphins “name” each other by using unique whistles that distinguish between different members within their pod. (more here)

mawkish [ maw-kish ] - adjective
showing emotion or love in an awkward or silly way
The movie lapses into mawkish sentimentality near the end.

Q: Which bird has the fastest landspeed pace in the world?
A: (see below next section)

image: twitter

TRIVIA ANSWER: The Australian Emu.

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