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US-HEALTH Summary

Sep 5, 2011, 2:12 a.m.

Obama backtracks on smog plan, bows to big business

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama put a stop on Friday to new rules that would limit smog pollution, unexpectedly reversing course on a key policy measure after businesses said it would kill jobs and cost them billions of dollars. Obama said the decision to withdraw the draft Ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standard by the Environmental Protection Agency was part of an effort to reduce regulatory burdens for business.

Court upholds most of South Dakota abortion

CHICAGO (Reuters) - An appeals court on Friday upheld much of a South Dakota law setting out what a pregnant woman should be told 24 hours before an abortion, including that the procedure would "terminate the life of a whole, separate, unique, living human being." The 8th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled against a provision in the 2005 law that would require the doctor to tell the woman about an increased risk of suicide after an abortion -- with the court saying the link was unproven and may not exist.

Obese kids have more asthma flare-ups

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Shaving off extra pounds might help asthmatic kids prevent flare-ups of the disease, according to a study that found obese children have a harder time controlling their symptoms. The work is the first to show that even after taking race and social factors into account, heavier kids use more drugs to control their asthma and curb flare-ups than their slimmer peers.

Folate tied to lower colon cancer risk

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - People who eat plenty of folate had a lower risk of colon and rectal cancers in a new study that examined the effects of folic acid fortification in the United States. In addition, the study did not find any extra cancer-related danger at very high levels of folate -- as some researchers have worried -- over close to a decade.

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