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Better Vision Associated With Health Plans Covering Eye Exams.

HealthDay reports, "Working-age adults who have vision insurance have better eyesight than those without insurance," according to a study published online Dec. 10 in the Archives of Ophthalmology. After studying data on "more than 30,000 people, aged 40 to 64, in the United States," researchers found that "people with vision insurance were more likely to report having periodic eye examinations and, on average, those who had such a checkup in the previous year had better eyesight."

MedPage Today points out that even though "periodic eye exams are recommended to detect and treat various conditions that can cause vision impairment or loss, vision coverage is often not part of medical insurance plans, throwing up a potential barrier to screening."

Diet May Impact Sleep Duration.

HealthDay reports that, according to a study published online in Appetite, diet may be linked to sleep duration. Investigators "analyzed data from the 2007-2008 US National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey and found that short sleepers (five to six hours a night) consumed the most calories, followed by normal sleepers (seven to eight hours), very short sleepers (fewer than five hours), and long sleepers (nine or more hours)." Meanwhile, "normal sleepers consumed the most varied diet, and short sleepers consumed the least varied diet." Additionally, the researchers found that "short sleep was associated with lower intake of vitamin C, tap water, selenium (a mineral found in nuts, meat and shellfish) and higher intake of nutrients found in green, leafy vegetables (called lutein and zeaxanthin)." 

Study Examines Association Between High-Fructose Corn Syrup, T2D.

The New York Times reports that a study published yesterday in Global Public Health "found that type 2 diabetes [T2D] occurred 20 percent more often in countries where high-fructose corn syrup was in common use, compared with countries where it was rarely - or never - added to food." The new "study included 43 countries where the availability of high-fructose corn syrup ranged from zero kilos per capita, like in India and 13 other countries, to 24.78 kilos (54.6 pounds) per capita in the United States." However, a copy of the study "reached the Corn Refiners Association, the industry group representing the companies that produce high-fructose corn syrup, which on Monday fired off a rebuttal," further adding to the controversy over the roles sweeteners may play in public health.