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Royal wedding: Meghan Markle wears Princess Diana's aquamarine ring to reception

After Saturday's royal wedding, Meghan Markle honored the late Princess Diana, Prince Harry's mother, with a little "something blue."

>> Royal Wedding photos: The kiss, the ring and more highlights

According to "Today" and Vogue, the Duchess of Sussex wore Diana's emerald-cut aquamarine ring to the couple's evening wedding reception.

>> Harry and Meghan’s new titles: Duke and Duchess of Sussex

>> Read more trending news 

The ring wasn't the only nod to the Princess of Wales. BuzzFeed reported that Markle's wedding bouquet included Diana's favorites, forget-me-nots, which Prince Harry picked from the Kensington Palace gardens. Additionally, two of Diana's diamonds were used to make Markle's engagement ring, "Today" reported.

'Royal wedding guest name' quiz could help scammers get your personal data

A seemingly innocent quiz that has been sweeping social media could help scammers get their hands on your personal data, experts say.

>> Royal Wedding: Meghan Markle, Prince Harry wed

"What's your royal wedding guest name?" the meme, which began circulating ahead of Saturday's royal wedding, asks.

>> Royal Wedding photos: The kiss, the ring and more highlights

One version reads as follows:

"In honor of the royal wedding, use your 'royal wedding guest name' this week. Start with either 'Lord' or 'Lady' – your first name is one of your grandparents' names. Your surname is the name of your first pet, then 'of' followed by the name of the street you grew up on."

>> PHOTOS: Meghan Markle’s wedding dress stuns at royal wedding

So what's the problem? According to WXIX and HuffPost, sharing your "royal name" could reveal the answers to your security questions.

>> PHOTOS: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle marry at Windsor Castle

"If they’re asking you what could be security-rated questions like ‘What’s your mother’s maiden name?' – things that you would get asked that would allow you to perhaps reset a password, login to a system through some alternative approach – they could be taking that information and be attempting to hack into systems with that," Dave Hatter, WXIX's technology expert, told the TV station.

>> PHOTOS: Oprah, Elton John among guests for royal wedding

A computer security expert identified as Snow echoed the sentiment in a message to HuffPost, saying the answers "could be used to gain access to accounts (social media, banking, work email, etc) with potential for identity theft."

Read more here or here.

New autism research could predict whether children as young as 3 months old are at risk

A groundbreaking study is being done at Boston Children's Hospital that researchers say could potentially predict whether a child as young as 3 months old is at-risk for developing autism.

>> Watch the news report here

Right now, most children can't receive a reliable diagnosis until they are at least 1 year old. 

Chase Minicucci and his mother, Hillary Steele Minicucci, regularly go to Boston Children’s to track his development. Chase seems to be a typically developing toddler, and he’s learning to point and use words to express his needs.

>> Could blood and urine test be used to diagnose autism?

However, Chase has been identified as at risk because his older brother, who is 7, has autism.

“We did the testing, and one day after his 4th birthday … the doctor said, ‘so your son has autism,’” said Hillary Steele Minicucci. 

Hillary and her husband also have a 6-year-old daughter who does not have autism, but autism is more prevalent in boys. 

Research shows one in five children whose siblings have autism will also be on the spectrum. Hillary spent the first year of Chase's life watching his behavior closely and worrying.

“I was literally making myself crazy over it,” she said. 

Hillary was able to find a spot for Chase in a study at Boston Children's Cognitive Neuroscience Lab, involving 99 siblings of children with autism.

Infants as young as 3 months old and toddlers up to 36 months old spend only a few minutes wearing a cap with more than 100 sensors. While wearing it, they watch a T.V. showing cartoons, which is also an eye tracker.

Boston Children's Cognitive Neuroscience Lab Director Dr. Charles Nelson said by studying their EEG signals, the electrical activity in the brain, they can predict which infants are likely to develop autism.

“What we've seen is at 3 months of age, we've seen patterns of brain activity that basically predict who, three years later, will develop autism,” said Nelson. 

>> Read more trending news 

One of the big unknowns is when does autism develop, and Nelson said the study is shining light on whether it happens before or after birth. 

“It's very unlikely that brain development was perfectly normal until birth and then something happened. The fact that we see it so early, just at 3 months, makes me think that it started before birth. But what derailed brain development, we don't know,” he said. 

Dr. Nelson stressed the medical community is not at the point yet where a 3-month-old could receive a diagnosis, but the child could be flagged. The next step is developing early intervention strategies for that age group.

As for Chase, his mother said that right now, he doesn't seem to be exhibiting some of the warning signs, which has given her some much-needed reassurance.

“I can start to enjoy my baby now,” she said. 

The study is ongoing and open to three groups of children: 

  • Babies with older siblings with ASD
  • Babies with no family history of autism who failed an autism screening
  • Typically developing babies

Because the EEG caps are relatively inexpensive, Nelson hopes someday soon every local pediatrician's office could have one and all infants could be identified within a critical window of time.

Yanny or Laurel? Shelter names puppies after viral audio clip

Viral sensations are often forgotten about after a few days — the Mannequin Challenge comes to mind — but there’s a new one that a future dog owner or two will remember forever. 

>> See the Facebook post here

>> Yanny or Laurel? Viral audio clip leaves internet divided

The Atlanta Humane Society jumped at the latest trend sweeping the internet by naming one puppy Yanny, the other Laurel. People have been hotly debating which one of those words can be heard in a short audio clip, similar to the great “What Color is this Dress” debate of 2015.

>> On AJC.com: These metro Atlanta dog adoption events won’t be held at shelters

Yanny, formerly known as Irving, is a 2-month-old male Chinese shar-pei mix. Laurel is a 3-month-old beagle mix who used to answer to Lillian. The puppies can be adopted for $295 each from the Howell Mill location. 

>> Yanny or Laurel debate: This is what you heard and why

This isn’t the first time the shelter has seized such an opportunity. The organization once named a puppy after the attention-capturing April the Giraffe.

The post of Yanny and Laurel, thought up by marketing manager Amanda Harris, garnered hundreds of likes in a couple hours. Harris said these kinds of tactics often lead to successful forever homes for the puppies, in addition to boosting awareness about AHS.

>> Read more trending news 

“We love engaging with our social followers and friends with content that is fun and relevant to what’s happening on social media,” Harris said. 

One person joked in the comments: “When you call one, the other will come.”

Chrissy Teigen, John Legend welcome baby boy

Cookbook author and TV personality Chrissy Teigen and singer John Legend have welcomed their second child, a son, People reported

>> Read more trending news 

"Somebody’s herrrrrrre!" Teigen, 32, wrote early Thursday in a tweet that included baby bottle emojis.

The celebrity couple also have a daughter, 2-year-old Luna. 

According to E!, Teigen and Legend, 39, "elected to undergo a frozen embryo transfer in hopes of becoming pregnant again" in 2017. People reported that the couple welcomed their son early. Teigen previously announced that the baby was due in June.

4-year-old girl severely burned by hot grease has special 'graduation' ceremony

A 4-year-old Georgia girl left in a coma after a house fire is back home. 

>> Watch the news report here

Caliyah Ross went home Tuesday after spending weeks at Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta, and staff held an extra-special ceremony for the 4-year-old before her discharge.

>> Read more trending news 

Ross had been looking forward to her pre-K graduation ceremony. She had taken pictures in her cap and gown.

Then, she was burned in a house fire.

Ross suffered third-degree burns to her face and arms after her uncle was discarding a pan of hot fish grease.

It caught fire, and the flames tore into the 4-year-old.

“It was a fire, you know, it was a fire that happened,” said her mother Latoya Heyward.

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The pain was so intense doctors placed her in a medically induced coma. Then she began to get better.

“She just looked like she was in pain but some days I would go to the ICU and ask her if she was in pain and she would shake her head and say, ‘No,’” Heyward said.

After rigorous speech and physical therapy, WSB-TV’s Tom Jones was there when Ross recovered enough to be discharged.

Her family said a higher power made it happen.

“She's been in here for about a month and he literally restored her back to health,” Heyward said.

Before she left on Tuesday, the hospital arranged a special graduation ceremony since Caliyah couldn't make her own.

>> Watch the clip here

The scars remain on her body.

Celebrity painter Antoine Donte painted a mural to remind Ross how beautiful she was and is. He included a scripture.

“It says, ‘For I will restore health to you and I will heal your wounds says the Lord,’” Heyward said.

Ross still has a long road to recovery.

She can't be out in the direct sunlight, so she will have to stay inside this summer.

You can donate to the family here.

Yanny or Laurel? Viral audio clip leaves internet divided

An audio clip on social media has the internet divided

>> Read more trending news 

Twitter user Cloe Feldman tweeted the clip, which repeats a word a number of times, Tuesday.

>> Listen to the clip here

While some people claim to hear the word "Laurel" in the clip, others say they hear "Yanny."

The clip has been shared thousands of times, and people around the world – including celebrities Chrissy Teigen, Mindy Kaling and, of course, Yanni – have weighed in on what they hear. 

The internet debate is similar to other sensations over the last few years, such as the dressthese shoes or this jacket.

So, is it "Yanny" or "Laurel"? Weigh in with our poll.

5 things you should know about Ramadan, Islam’s holy month of fasting

Throughout the holy month of Ramadan, observers fast from sunrise to sunset and partake in nightly feasts.

>> Read more trending news

Here are five things to know about Islam’s sacred month:

What is Ramadan?

Ramadan, the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, is the holy month of fasting, spiritual reflection and prayer for Muslims.

It is believed to be the month in which the Prophet Muhammad revealed the holy book — Quran — to Muslims.

The word “Ramadan” itself is taken from the Arabic word, “ramad,” an adjective describing something scorchingly dry or intensely heated by the sun.

When is Ramadan?

The Islamic calendar is based on the moon’s cycle and not the sun’s (what the Western world uses), so the dates vary year to year.

By the Gregorian solar calendar, Ramadan is 10 to 12 days earlier every year.

In 2018, Ramadan begins on May 15 and last through June 14.

>> Read more trending news 

To determine when exactly the holy month will begin, Muslim-majority countries look to local moon sighters, according to Al Jazeera.

The lunar months last between 29 and 30 days, depending on the sighting of the moon on the 29th night of each month. If the moon is not visible, the month will last 30 days.

What do Muslims do during Ramadan and why?

Ramadan is known as the holy month of fasting, with Muslims abstaining from eating and drinking from sunrise to sunset.

Fasting during the holiday is one of the Five Pillars of Islam, along with the daily prayer, declaration of faith, charity and performing the Hajj pilgrimage in Mecca, Saudi Arabia.

In 2016, according to Al Jazeera, fasting hours around the globe ranged between 11 and 22 hours and in the US, 16 to 18 hours.

The fast is intended to remind Muslims of the suffering of those less fortunate and bring believers closer to God (Allah, in Arabic). 

During the month, Muslims also abstain from habits such as smoking, caffeine, sex and gossip; this is seen as a way to both physically and spiritually purify oneself while practicing self-restraint.

Here’s what a day of fasting during Ramadan is like:

  • Muslims have a predawn meal called the “suhoor.”
  • Then, they fast all day until sunset.
  • At sunset, Muslims break their fast with a sip of water and some dates, the way they believe the Prophet Muhammad broke his fast more than a thousand years ago.
  • After sunset prayers, they gather at event halls, mosques or at home with family and friends in a large feast called “iftar."
How is the end of Ramadan celebrated?

Toward the end of the month, Muslims celebrate Laylat al-Qadr or “the Night of Power/Destiny” — a day observers believe Allah sent the Angel Gabriel to the Prophet Muhammad to reveal the Quran’s first verses.

On this night, which falls on one of the last 10 nights of Ramadan, Muslims practice intense worship as they pray for answers and seek forgiveness for any sins.

To mark the end of Ramadan, determined by the sighting of the moon on the 29th, a 3-day celebration called Eid al-Fitr brings families and friends together in early morning prayers followed by picnics, feasts and fun.

Does every Muslim fast during Ramadan?

According to most interpreters of the Quran, children, the elderly, the ill, pregnant women, women who are nursing or menstruating, and travelers are exempt from fasting.

Some interpreters also consider intense hunger and thirst as well as compulsion (someone threatening another to do something) exceptions.

But as an entirety, whether Muslims fast or not often depends on their ethnicity and country.

Many Muslims in Muslim-majority countries, for example, observe the monthlong fast during Ramadan, according to 2012 data from the Pew Research Center.

In fact, in Saudi Arabia, Muslims and non-Muslims can be fined or jailed for eating in public during the day, according to the Associated Press.

But in the United States and in Europe, many Muslims are accepting of non-observers.

Meghan Markle in 'difficult situation,' palace says after report father will skip royal wedding

Following reports that Thomas Markle won’t attend daughter Meghan’s wedding to Prince Harry on Saturday, royal reps have issued a statement.

>> Royal Wedding: Everything to know before Prince Harry marries Meghan Markle

While not outright confirming the reports, it asked for “understanding,” especially for the American bride-to-be and her father.

>> On AJC.com: TMZ: Meghan Markle’s dad won’t be at the royal wedding on Saturday

“This is a deeply personal moment for Ms. Markle in the days before her wedding,” a Kensington Palace spokesman said Monday. “She and Prince Harry ask again for understanding and respect to be extended to Mr. Markle in this difficult situation.”

>> See the statement here

>> How to watch and stream the royal wedding (plus everything else on TV about Prince Harry and Meghan Markle)

The statement comes on the heels of a TMZ report earlier Monday that Thomas Markle would skip the wedding due to his involvement in posing for photos that were sold for large sums of money. Markle, 73, told TMZ that he’d “meant no harm to Meghan or the royal family.”

>> Read more trending news 

Read more here.

Major depression diagnoses on the rise in the U.S., study finds

Over the past five years, diagnoses of major depression in the United States have risen by at least 33 percent.

>> On AJC.com: People with depression are more likely to use certain words — here’s how they express themselves

That’s according to a new report from the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, for which analysts assessed the BCBS Health Index built from billions of claims for more than 41 million commercially insured Americans annually.

>> Read more trending news 

The index, which quantifies how more than 200 diseases and conditions affect quality of life, showed that major depression is the second most significant condition on overall health in America. The first is hypertension, or high blood pressure.

According to the report, those diagnosed with major depression are nearly 30 percent less healthy on average than those without the condition. Such a decrease in overall health may mean a loss of nearly 10 years of healthy life for both men and women.

>> On AJC.com: Why are Americans so lonely? Massive study finds nearly half of US feels alone, young adults most of all

More than 9 million commercially insured Americans in the index are affected by major depression. The rate of diagnosis in the country is 4.4 percent. But while diagnoses are up 33 percent since 2013 overall, the rate is even higher among teens and young adults − 47 percent. For teen girls, specifically, the rate has risen by 65 percent.

"The high rates for adolescents and millennials could have a substantial health impact for decades to come," Trent Haywood, senior vice president and chief medical officer for BCBSA, said in a statement. "Further education and research is needed to identify methods for both physicians and patients to effectively treat major depression and begin a path to recovery and better overall health." 

Analysts also found that overall, women are more than twice as likely as men to be diagnosed with major depression (6 percent compared to 2.8 percent, respectively).

>> On AJC.com: Depressed? Reduce your symptoms with this type of exercise

Geographically, 49 of the 50 states saw rising diagnosis rates between 2013 and 2016. Hawaii was the only state that experienced a slight decline (a rate of less than 2 percent). Communities in New England, the Pacific Northwest and areas throughout the South and Midwest had higher rates of major depression compared to the rest of the country.

Rhode Island had the highest diagnosis rate with 6 percent. However, the authors noted that differences in efforts to screen for major depression can result in varying diagnoses rates across states.

“While major depression is the second most impactful health condition for the nation, it is complicated by an increased likelihood of overlapping diagnoses of other chronic, behavioral health and pain-related conditions,” authors of the report wrote.

In fact, of the 9 million Americans diagnosed with major depression in 2016, only 15 percent were diagnosed with depression alone. Eighty-five percent, according to the analysis, were diagnosed with an additional health condition.

>> On AJC.com: 5 signs you should ask your doctor about depression

In addition to a lower quality of life, those diagnosed with major depression are more likely to use more healthcare services, resulting in more than twice the spending.

It’s important to note that the report’s findings, based on people with BCBS commercial health insurance, are likely an underestimate. Most Americans are covered by a commercial health plan, but many who report symptoms of depression say they have not been diagnosed or received treatment for the condition.

According to the World Health Organization, more than 300 million people of all ages suffer from depression, and it’s the leading cause of disability worldwide.

>> On AJC.com: The suicide rate for teen girls is the highest it’s been in 40 years — Is social media to blame? 

Additionally, approximately 800,000 people die of suicide each year; that’s one person every 40 seconds. In the U.S., between 1999 and 2014, the suicide rate rose by 24 percent. And, according to recent data released from the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, suicide rates among 15- to 19-year-old girls doubled between 2007 and 2015, reaching a 40-year high.

Read the full Blue Cross Blue Shield report at bcbs.com.

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