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Health Highlights: Dec. 2, 2015

Here are some of the latest health and medical news developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay:

Soft Drinks Removed From Children's Menus at Applebee's and IHOP

Soft drinks are being removed from Applebee's and IHOP children's menus, the owner of the restaurant chains says.

"We believe this is a small step in assisting parents while dining out, as parents are in the best position to determine the appropriate food and beverage choices for their children," DineEquity spokesman Craig Hoffman said in a statement, ABC News reported.

However, soft drinks will still be available for children whose parents order the beverages, the company said.

A growing number of restaurant chains are taking soft drinks off their children's menus, including Burger King, Dairy Queen, McDonald's, and Wendy's, ABC News reported.

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Recall of E. Coli-Linked Celery Includes 150,000 Products

About 150,000 food products that contain celery linked to an E. coli outbreak have been recalled in 18 states, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration says.

The celery was identified as the source of E. coli in Costco chicken salad that sickened 19 people, United Press International reported.

The recall covers products from nearly a dozen retailers -- including Costco, Starbucks, Target and Walmart -- in Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington and Wyoming.

The recalled products include more than 45,000 Starbucks holiday turkey sandwiches in California, Oregon and Nevada, UPI reported.

Despite the recall, the number of E. coli O157:H7 cases linked to the celery is expected to rise in the next several weeks due to the large number of products and stores involved, the FDA said.

"This is a very bad strain," Dr. William Schaffner, a professor of preventive medicine at Vanderbilt University, told CBS News, according to UPI.

"This is one of those strains of E. coli that can result in subsequent kidney failure, especially among children. So it's a much more hazardous strain than the one that involved the Chipotle restaurants," he explained.


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