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WSJ looks at growing field of chronobiology

BY David Salazar

Your circadian rhythm is turning out to be more important than you might have thought. The Wall Street Journal’s Melinda Beck recently wrote about chronobiology, the emerging study of the body’s internal rhythms that regulate cognitive abilities, your mood on a given day, and various other functions. 
 
Among some of the findings that scientists looking into chronobiology have reported are the typical timings of common health issues. For instance, Beck points to a study that found tourists who have heart attacks in Hawaii tended to have them at a time their body knows as early morning, regardless of local time. Like heart attacks, strokes usually take place in the morning, potentially the result of increased production PAI-1, which aids in blood clotting. 
 
Another study conducted by the Medical Chronobiology Program at Boston’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital found that health issues can occur when the body’s rhythms and behavior don’t correspond. Rats who ate when they typically sleep ended up gaining more weight than those who were fed at normal times. Beck highlights that shift workers whose circadian rhythm don’t correspond with their daily activities will have similar issues—she points to higher obesity, stroke, and other rates among shift workers. Those with mental health issues like bipolar disorder might even be able to point do dysfunction in genes that regulate the body’s internal clock. 
 
A new field—chronotherapy—is emerging as a way to combat the difficulties faced by those whose circadian rhythms and daily activities are out of sync. Though clinical trials still need to be conducted, some solutions might be as easy as taking an acid blocker at night, when stomach acid production increases. All of these, though, are just management, as the best solution seems to be settling into a routine of sleeping, eating and waking at the same time every day. 
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Amazon has top reputation in retail in 2015

BY Dan Berthiaume

For the third year in a row, Amazon has claimed the top spot in the Reputation Institute’s annual survey of America’s 50 most reputable companies in the retail industry.

Amazon is the only company of all the retail companies surveyed to achieve an excellent reputation.

Supermarket chains moved up in the ranking this year, with Publix ranking second and Whole Foods jumping five spots to third place in 2015.

America’s top 10 companies in the retail industry in 2015 are:

  1. Amazon.com
  2. Publix Super Markets Inc.
  3. Whole Foods
  4. Tiffany & Co.
  5. Costco Wholesale
  6. Lowe’s Home Improvement
  7. Home Depot
  8. Ace Hardware
  9. Cabela’s
  10. Ahold

In 2015, four new companies made the top 10 in retail: Tiffany & Co., Ace Hardware, Cabela’s and Ahold.

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Ahold USA names new president, general manager for Peapod

BY Michael Johnsen

CARLISLE, Pa.  – Ahold USA on Thursday announced that Jennifer Carr-Smith has been appointed to president and general manager of Peapod, effective June 15. Carr-Smith replaces Andrew Parkinson who has been appointed to a newly established advisory role.
 
Carr-Smith brings more than 20 years of e-commerce experience to her position with Peapod. Most recently, Carr-Smith served as the COO of J. Crew’s online business, where she led J. Crew’s transformation to a digital retailer with strong e-commerce capabilities. Prior to her role at J. Crew, Carr-Smith served as COO for Giggle, an omni-channel retailer focused on baby gear; chief operating officer for Gilt Groupe, an online shopping company with more than six million members; and in leadership roles in finance, strategy and operations with Polo Ralph Lauren Corporation and Drugstore.com. Carr-Smith holds an M.B.A. from Harvard and a B.S. in Economics from Brown University.
 
In his new role, Parkinson will serve as an advisor to Carr-Smith while pursuing new business development opportunities for Peapod. Parkinson is co-founder of Peapod and has led the company to significantly increased sales each year for 26 years. Most recently, Parkinson led the expansion of Peapod’s online grocery delivery service to meet growing customer needs through the creation of “Pick-Up Points.” He also championed the opening of Peapod Propulsion Labs, a digital innovation center in Chicago.
 
“This is a real success story, and we look forward to welcoming Jennifer as she leverages her deep e-commerce experience to inspire our associates and delight our customers,” said Jan van Dam, EVP marketing, format, supply chain and own brands. “We thank Andrew for his pioneering vision to cultivate technology in order to make grocery shopping easier and more convenient for our customers.”
 
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