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✍🏻 2x Female Literacy. US Diabetes Climbs. Healthier Meat Alternatives.

Chart of the Day #60 looks at Global Literacy Rates, Meat Substitutes and Pre-Pregnancy Diabetes.

Bok 🍷

Scientists at Jawaharlal Nehru Centre For Advanced Scientific Research have developed a silk-based hydrogel system mimicking the pancreas, potentially revolutionizing insulin delivery for diabetes treatment. A study published recently found that individuals sleeping less than 6 hours daily had a higher risk of developing Type-2 diabetes compared with those with 7 to 8 hours of sleep.

Today's Topics

  • ✍🏻 Global Literacy. Female literacy rate grows 2x that of males
  • 🍗 Meat Substitutes. US views meat alternatives as healthier
  • 🩸 Pre-Pregnancy Diabetes. Pre-pregnancy diabetes rates increase in US

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✍🏻 Female Literacy Rate Grows 2x That of Males

Women's literacy globally has grown rapidly over the past two decades, at a rate twice that of men. Despite progress in literacy rates, a persistent gap of 6.6% exists between men and women as of 2020. Despite the narrowing gap from the 1990's onwards, women still face unequal access and outcomes in education.

While regions like Western Asia and Northern Africa have made notable progress towards gender parity in literacy, others such as Sub-Saharan Africa and Oceania continue to lag behind. Various factors like poverty, child marriage, and gender-based violence create barriers to girls' education, differing across countries and communities. Often, impoverished families prioritize investing in boys' education.

🍗 US Views Meat Alternatives as Healthier

Two innovative meat substitutes, plant-based and cell-cultured meat, are gaining popularity as sustainable alternatives. Leading brands like Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods have driven the US market to $1.4 billion in 2021, while overall US meat sales have declined.

Long-term, plant-based foods drive growth as US consumers perceive meat substitutes as healthier, with recent taste and quality improvements reinforcing this trend. As the market grows and technology is integrated into production, the cost of producing meat alternatives is also declining. Cell-cultured meat shows promising cost reductions from $1.2 million per pound in 2013 to about $50 per pound in 2020.

🩸 Pre-Pregnancy Diabetes Rates Increase in US

Pregestational diabetes rates have risen, increasing by 27% in 2021 compared to 2016. Pregestational diabetes, where a woman has diabetes before pregnancy, poses risks for both mother and fetus. Driven by poor nutrition and sedentary lifestyles, there's been a 32% increase in diabetes among mothers aged 20–24 between 2016 and 2022.

In 2021, pregestational diabetes rates in the US were lowest among White mothers, slightly higher for Hispanic and Asian mothers, and significantly higher for African Americans, Native Hawaiian/Other Pacific Islander, and American Indian mothers.

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