Showing posts with label health in news. Show all posts
Showing posts with label health in news. Show all posts

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Six Staggering Diabetes Facts


Diabetes Facts
  • There are about 250 million people with diabetes in the world
  • Type 1 diabetes is growing by 3% per year in children and adolescents.
  • It is estimated that 70,000 children under 15 develop type 1 diabetes each year (200 children a day).
  • Of the estimated 440,000 cases of type 1 diabetes in children worldwide, more than a quarter live in South-East Asia, and more than a fifth in Europe.
  • In the US, it is estimated that type 2 diabetes represents between 8 and 45% of new-onset diabetes cases in children
  • Over a 20-year period, type 2 diabetes has doubled in children in Japan, so that it is now more common than type.
News By Medindia

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Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Soaring BPA Levels Found in People Who Eat Canned Foods

Woman in Shopping Mall
Eating canned food every day may raise the levels of the compound bisphenol A (BPA) in a person's urine more than previously suspected, a new study suggests.

People who ate a serving of canned soup every day for five days had BPA levels of 20.8 micrograms per liter of urine, whereas people who instead ate fresh soup had levels of 1.1 micrograms per liter, according to the study. BPA is found in many canned foods — it is a byproduct of the chemicals used to prevent corrosion.

When the researchers looked at the rise in BPA levels seen in the average participant who ate canned soup compared with those who ate fresh soup, they found a 1,221 percent jump.

"To see an increase in this magnitude was quite surprising," said study leader Karin Michels, an associate professor of epidemiology at the Harvard School of Public Health.

The levels of BPA seen in the study participants "are among the most extreme reported in a nonoccupational setting," the researchers wrote in their study. In the general population, levels have been found to be around 1 to 2 micrograms per liter, Michels said.

The study noted that levels higher than 13 micrograms per liter were found in only the top 5 percent of participants in the National Health and Examination Survey, which is an ongoing study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

"We are concerned about the influence of [hormone-disrupting] chemicals on health in general, and BPA is one of them," Michels told MyHealthNewsDaily.

The study is published online today (Nov. 22) in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Soup for lunch

The study included 75 people, whose average age was 27. One group of participants ate 12 ounces of fresh soup every day at lunchtime, while the other ate the same amount of canned soup each day. Urine samples were collected from the participants on the fourth and fifth days of the study.

BPA was detected in 77 percent of people who ate the fresh soup, and all of the people who ate the canned soup, according to the study.

Only a few studies had previously looked at BPA levels from eating canned foods, and those relied on asking people how much of the food they usually eat comes from cans, Michels said. The new study was the first in which researchers randomized participants to eat a small serving of canned food or fresh food, and measured the resulting difference in their urine BPA levels, she said.

"We've known for a while that drinking beverages that have been stored in certain hard plastics can increase the amount of BPA in your body. This study suggests that canned foods may be an even greater concern, especially given their wide use," said study researcher Jenny Carwile, a doctoral student at Harvard.

BPA and health

A 2008 study of 1,455 people showed that higher urinary BPA levels were linked with higher risks of developing cardiovascular disease and diabetes, and abnormal concentrations of certain liver enzymes, even after factors such as age, body mass index and smoking were taken into account.

And other studies have linked BPA levels in a woman's urine during her pregnancy to health problems in her child.

It is not known how long the levels of BPA might remain high, according to the study. However, it is also not known whether such a spike, even if it isn't sustained for very long, may affect health, the researchers wrote.

The study was limited in that all of the participants were students or staff at one school, and a single soup brand (Progresso) was tested, but the researchers wrote that they expected the results to apply to canned foods with a similar BPA content.

"Reducing canned food consumption may be a good idea, especially for people consuming foods from cans regularly," Michels said. "Maybe manufacturers can take the step of taking BPA out of the lining of cans — some have already done this, but only a few."

The study was funded by the Allen Foundation, which advocates nutrition research.

News by Yahoo

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Thursday, October 27, 2011

The Burmese python, perhaps the key to healthy human heart

Burmese Python
AFP - The Burmese python, one of the largest snakes in the world, could hold the key to new treatments to prevent or combat human heart disease, U.S. researchers hope that the study was published Thursday. This reptile, which can measure up to nine meters long with a weight of 90 pounds, able to swallow a deer or an alligator, secretes fatty acids whose properties seem to work wonders on the heart, the work on show These pythons and mice by researchers at the University of Colorado at Boulder (west). They found that the amounts of triglycerides - the main element forming natural fats and oils - fivefold increase in blood pythons one day after swallowed prey.

Despite the strong increase of fat in the body of snakes, the authors of the study, published in the journal Science dated October 28, found no fatty deposits in their heart. In addition, they measured the increase of an enzyme called superoxide dismutase, well known for its powerful protective effects on cardiac muscle, including humans. After determining the chemical composition of blood plasma (the liquid component of blood) of pythons in full digestion, the researchers injected the liquid or a similar substance reconstituted in pythons that had an empty stomach. After these injections, these snakes have shown a marked increase in the heart and signs of a healthy heart. The researchers repeated the experiment with mice and found the same beneficial effects on the heart of rodents which increased in size.

"We discovered that a certain combination of fatty acids can have beneficial effects on cardiac growth of living organisms," said Cecilia Riquelme, lead author of the study. "Now we try to understand the molecular mechanism behind this process and hope that the results lead to new therapies to better treat human heart disease," she adds. Previous studies have shown that the mass of the heart of Burmese pythons increased by 40% within 24 to 72 hours after a large meal and the activity of their metabolism quadrupled immediately after swallowing their prey. The pythons, which can fast for a year with few adverse effects on their health, their hearts are almost double in size after a meal.

Since this increase in mass of the heart muscle is similar in athletes like cycling champion Lance Armstrong or the swimmer Michael Phelps, explore the heart of pythons could help researchers to improve the heart health of humans, the scientists believe. They note that there are also bad enlarged hearts due to hypertrophy, the leading cause of sudden death in young athletes. If disease can cause thickening of the heart muscle and lower chambers of the heart caused by his work more to pump blood, an expansion resulting from strenuous exercise, however, is a good thing, said Leslie Leinwand, Professor of biology at the University of Colorado who led the work.

"There are many people who are not able to exercise since suffering from heart disease," said the biologist, adding that "it would be" well to develop a treatment capable of inducing growth of cardiac cells "in these patients.