iStock/ThinkstockBy DR. JENNIFER ASHTON, ABC News Senior Medical Contributor

Boy or girl? If you could choose, would you?

A growing number of couples are deciding to forego the surprise of labor and delivery and actually choose the sex of their baby.

It’s called gender selection and Dr. Jeffrey Steinberg, a director at The Fertility Institutes, says up to 90 percent of his patients come to him because they want to decide whether they have a boy or a girl.

Now, gender selection for non-medical reasons is not without controversy. Ethically, on the side for gender selection, are the concepts of patient autonomy and reproductive liberty. On the opposing side are issues of possible gender discrimination and the inappropriate use of medical resources.

The United States is only one of a handful of countries that allow gender selection.

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iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Are parents taking all the fun out of kids playing sports these days?

That’s exactly what some experts are saying. By taking the competitive edge to the extreme, it could be having negative effects on your child’s desires to play.

A survey by the Sports and Fitness Industry Association has discovered that over a recent five-year span, the number of kids and teens playing team sports declined nearly 4 percent and that participation in all sports in general is down 10 percent. Some experts are placing the majority of the blame on pressure from parents.

“Parents are getting increasingly competitive about showing that their kids are number one in everything and sports is just another example,” Lindsay Powers, editorial director of Yahoo Parenting, told ABC News.

Amanda Joy Visek, an associate professor at George Washington University, surveyed nearly 150 children, asking what they found fun about sports. The results were that kids reacted positively to team dynamics, trying hard and learning. However, on a list of 81 factors contributing to their happiness, they put “winning” all the way down at number 48.

“When there’s such an overemphasis on winning, it really takes away the enjoyment and fun experience from the kids,” Visek, Ph.D., explained.

Lisa Harper, a mother of two, values hard work and discipline in sports.

“It translates into school, it translates into professions,” Harper, of Redwood City, California, said.

So how do we get kids back on the field enjoying athletics again? Experts say a shift in parents’ attitudes and expectations could do the trick.

“Parents should take a step back and really listen to what their kids want,” said Powers. “For overly competitive parents, it’s never too late to make a change.”

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Dan Kitwood/iStock/ThinkStock(NEWPORT, Ky.) — A large python attacked a man at a reptile shop in Newport, Kentucky on Monday.

The shop’s owner, Terry Wilkins, is in critical condition after a 20-foot, 125 pound python attacked and wrapped itself around him, reports ABC News affiliate WCPO-TV.

When police officers arrived at the scene, one of the officers was able to unwrap the snake from Wilkins and was able to get it back into a cage.

Wilkins was unconscious when the officers arrived, but was revived after being transported out of the store and to the hospital, says WCPO-TV.

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Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — General Mills said that it’s recalling some Cheerios cereal products, because some boxes may be mislabeled gluten-free that contain wheat.

The company said Monday that it’s voluntarily recalling Cheerios and Honey Nut Cheerios products made at its facility in Lodi, California, due to an incident that allowed wheat flour to enter its gluten-free oat-based system.

A spokeswoman for General Mills said there have been reports of illness by consumers online and two illness complaints were reported directly to General Mills related to the affected products.

The company asks customers to check the “better if used by” code dates on Honey Nut Cheerios boxes for July 12-25, 2016 with plant code “LD” at the end. For example, “12JUL2016 LD” to “25Jul2016 LD.”
For the yellow boxes of original Cheerios, the dates are July 14-17, 2016:

14JUL2016 LD

15JUL2016 LD

16JUL2016 LD

17JUL2016 LD

The company said this voluntary recall affects products made in four days of the original Cheerios and 13 days of production of Honey Nut Cheerios.

The company, which is transitioning five varieties of Cheerios to gluten-free, said other cereals produced at General Mills’ other facilities are not affected.

“We want to reassure you that this was an isolated incident and we have implemented a solution to ensure that this will not happen again. We’ll also continue to test products and our oat flour supply to ensure our products meet the gluten-free standard. We care about what you and your family eat and we are truly sorry for this mistake. We will work extremely hard to earn back your trust,” according to a statement from the Cheerios Twitter handle.

We’re so sorry to announce we’re recalling some boxes of Cheerios/Honey Nut Cheerios. Please view image below & share

— Cheerios (@cheerios) October 5, 2015

Customers who want refunds or have questions should call General Mills consumer services at 800-775-8370.

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ABC News(NEW YORK) — The survival suits that were on board the cargo ship that is believed to have sunk near the Bahamas during Hurricane Joaquin are more specialized than just normal life jackets.

The immersion suits, dubbed ‘Gumby’ suits after their visual similarities to the claymation character, inflate and are intended to help keep the wearer upright while in the water and prevent hypothermia.

“You can stay warmer a little longer cause even in warm water conditions you are susceptible to hypothermia and there’s only so long you can survive in the ocean,” Coast Guard chief of response Capt. Mark Fedor said at a press conference Monday.

Fedor said that there were 46 suits on board the ship, El Faro, which had 33 crew members at the time that the distress signal was sent out Thursday morning.

The search and rescue teams looked into “multiple reports” of the suits in the water, and they “checked those methodically through the day” on Sunday when conditions permitted an effective search.

Rescue teams saw “less than a handful” of the suits floating in the search zone. There were “human remains” in one of the suits but the body was unidentifiable.

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iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — One little girl’s reaction to a photo taken of herself almost a year ago is priceless.

“[Celia] was thrilled,” mom Katie Furtado of Cranston, Rhode Island, told ABC News on Monday. “When she saw it, she started screaming and pointing to herself. I think the whole world looks at Celia differently now since she doesn’t have any hair and she’s lost a lot of weight, but I was relieved that Celia still sees Celia.”

Celia, 5, who has Down syndrome, was diagnosed with B-cell lymphoblastic lymphoma in April. Furtado said Celia is starting to bounce back from her chemotherapy treatments, which will last two years.

“A lot of her personality was put on hold for quite a few months, but like I said to someone the other day, ‘She’s back,'” said Furtado.

Photographer Laura Kilgus of Providence said she voluntarily snapped photos of Furtado’s children last fall in conjunction with the Down Syndrome Society of Rhode Island — something she said she does for a number of families in the area.

“I have a nephew with Down syndrome and I wanted to do something to raise awareness,” Kilgus said. “I thought it would be cool to do a mini-shoot, so I contacted the director about it and the Furtados were one of the families that took us up on our offer.”

On Oct. 1, Kilgus hosted a gallery for Down Syndrome Awareness Month at the Warwick Public Library, where she displayed her photography, including shots of Celia and her sister Ava.

As the Furtado family arrived at the event, Kilgus took another photo of Celia — this time, capturing her reaction while viewing a portrait of herself.

“She spotted herself right away and she pointed and smiled,” Kilgus said. “The past few months for Celia and her family have been so difficult and exhausting. This was something that could be a little light for them and give them a little hope and showcase some memories that were such fun days.”

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iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — From firming lotions and invasive plastic surgery, some women try many methods to get rid of stubborn cellulite.

Brianne Edwards, of Los Angeles, says she runs up to 6 miles a day and eats right, but she has always struggled with cellulite, especially in her buttocks and thighs.

“I’ve had it, it seems like forever, and I just have not been able to find anything that works,” the 35-year-old said. “When you’re always thinking about it, it kills your confidence.”

Edwards heard about a new treatment called Cellfina. The Food and Drug Administration-cleared, outpatient procedure, available nationwide, promises to improve the appearance of cellulite for at least one year.

Dr. Grant Stevens, a board certified plastic surgeon in Los Angeles, says his patients love the results.

Stevens said he understands that some people might be skeptical. So was he, until he saw the results.

“It’s safe. It’s easy. It’s affordable and it really works,” he said.

Cellfina uses a very small blade to cut through the connective bands that pull down the skin and create a dimpled appearance. Once the fibers are released, Stevens said the skin bounces back and becomes smooth.

Before people spend $3,000 to $6,000 on the procedure, however, critics warn not to expect perfection.

“It’s not going to fix everything,” said Dr. Sharon Giese, a plastic surgeon in New York who said many people have cellulite “all over their butt and thighs.”

For her procedure, Edwards was given a local anesthetic. Then, one by one, Stevens released the fibers using a small blade.

“I can see the dimples actually releasing,” Stevens said.

Edwards even took a selfie during the procedure, which lasted for about 45 minutes. Stevens said Edwards might have some swelling and bruising, but he said she’ll be bikini-ready in just two weeks.

Edwards said the procedure went “really well.” She hopes it will get rid of her cellulite and bring back her confidence.

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Top Photo Group/ThinkstockBy DR. JENNIFER ASHTON, ABC News Senior Medical Contributor

In the battle of the bulge, sometimes will power can wilt. The culprit? It could be stress.

In a recent study published in the journal Neuron, researchers found that participants who experienced even moderate stress were more likely to choose foods that tasted good over healthier options.

Now, when people are under stress, their body actually wants to have glucose. Why? That’s the brain’s preferred source of energy. These foods activate the reward centers in the brain which can make you want more and more.

So what’s the best weapon to beat your brain’s wiring? If you feel like reaching for that cookie, remove yourself from that environment. Go outside or do another activity.

And plan ahead: Make sure you have healthy food choices for a variety of situations.

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Huntstock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — While some may feel their personal trainer’s enthusiasm is phony, some seniors in Singapore know it for a fact: the residents of Lions Befrienders Seniors’ Activity Centre are being kept in shape by a robot.

Asia One reports Robocoach, which was originally developed by students from Ngee Ann Polytechnic, has been leading fitness classes by example, demonstrating moves, and by employing its motion-sensor technology to ensure its trainees are keeping up.

Singapore’s tech-centric Infocomm Development Authority (IDA) wants to deploy the bots at five other facilities by year’s end, in addition to other gadgets meant to improve the lives and health of its aging population, especially those people suffering from Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s.

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(NEW YORK) — A new study published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics found that elderly people who interact with their relatives in person — and not on the phone or by email — are less likely to suffer from depression.

Researchers pored through data on more than 11,000 adults from the national Health and Retirement Survey, and compared those who suffered from symptoms of depression with the method and frequency with which they kept in touch with their friends and family members.

Researchers found those elderly people who got “face time” with their loved ones once or twice a week suffered from fewer instances of depression, while those who primarily communicated via telephone enjoyed no such reduction.

The study also revealed that depression was lessened in people between the ages of 50-70 who had an active social life, while fewer signs of depression were found in people older than 70 who interacted regularly with family as opposed to friends.

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