Daily Rounds: Obama On Contraception; Alzheimer's Funding Boost; Inhaled Caffeine; Bread And Salt

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Obama tries to ease ire on contraception rule (The New York Times) "Facing vocal opposition from religious leaders and an escalating political fight, the White House sought on Tuesday to ease mounting objections to a new administration rule that would require health insurance plans — including those offered by Catholic universities and charities — to offer birth control to women free of charge. As the Republican presidential candidates and conservative leaders sought to frame the rule as showing President Obama’s insensitivity to religious beliefs, Mr. Obama’s aides promised to explore ways to make it more palatable to religious-affiliated institutions, perhaps by allowing some employers to make side insurance plans available that are not directly paid for by the institutions." (The New York Times)

Alzheimer's research gets funding boost (Kaiser Health News) - "The Obama administration announced plans Tuesday for a two-year, $156 million cash infusion for Alzheimer’s research and care. The money will help solidify a still-developing national plan to better treat and even prevent the illness by 2025. If approved, the $130 million total would represent a 25-percent increase in NIH investment in research – currently $450 million per year." (Kaiser Health News)

Getting caffeine fix as easy as taking deep breath (AP via Boston Globe) - "Move over, coffee and Red Bull. A Harvard professor thinks the next big thing will be people inhaling their caffeine from a lipstick-sized tube. Critics say the novel product is not without its risks. The product, called AeroShot, went on the market late last month in Massachusetts and New York.  Biomedical engineering professor David Edwards said AeroShot is safe and does not contain common additives, like taurine, used to amplify the caffeine effect in common energy drinks. But Democratic U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer of New York wants the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to review AeroShot." (AP via The Boston Globe)

To hold the salt, it's time to hold the bread (NPR - The Salt) - A report out today from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention unmasks bread and some other sneaky sodium-heavy foods. It turns out that 10 foods — from bread to poultry to cheese to pasta dishes — are responsible for more than 40 percent of people's sodium intake." (NPR - The Salt)

This program aired on February 8, 2012. The audio for this program is not available.