Sunday, September 4, 2011

American Council on Science and Health, 2011: Week 35

The presence of linked articles here are merely a way of showing what is going on, whether I agree or disagree with the positions presented. Rich Kozlovich

FEATURED ARTICLE

GM foods and pesticides pose no danger to health
In one of his most pompous and slanted columns yet, The New York Times' Mark Bittman alleges that the U.S. government is in cahoots with large agricultural biotech companies that sacrifice the environment for profits.

DIET

FDA weighing down efforts to fight obesity
In the past year, the FDA has rejected three weight-loss drugs over safety concerns.

One potato, two potatoes — no potatoes?
We say potato, but the National School Lunch Program is saying potat-no.

The trickier math of weight loss
Losing weight may not be as simple as just cutting a prescribed number of calories, finds a new study published in The Lancet.

Paper presents a worse-case obesity scenario
In a special series on obesity, The Lancet has published four papers, the first of which warns that nearly half of all U.S. men and women will be obese by 2030.

Gout: A weighty problem
That the prevalence of obesity is rising in the U.S. is no secret. However, few people may realize that, among the other obesity-related diseases more commonly cited, such excess body weight puts them at risk for gout.

FACTS AND FALLACIES

Don’t take this news with a grain of salt
What's in a name? Well, when it comes to marketing, most people believe that what's called "sea salt" is healthier than table salt and also packs less sodium.

HEART AND STROKES

Preventive heart meds: Cheap and under-used
Cardiovascular disease affects more than 100 million people worldwide, yet the inexpensive drugs that could lower the risk for recurrence of these life-threatening illnesses are not getting to the majority of patients who need them.

Eat chocolate — because you like it, not for health!
The media are suddenly abuzz with the latest on the putative health benefits of one of our favorite "foods": a study just published in BMJ reports that chocolate may improve cardiovascular health.

Over-screening and under-treating osteoporosis
A new study in the journal Menopause suggests that too many women are being unnecessarily screened for osteoporosis.

New blood-thinning drug offers greater benefits
The findings of a recent worldwide trial show that the new anticoagulant drug apixaban was 21 percent more effective at preventing strokes in patients with atrial fibrilliation than warfarin (Coumadin), the current standard of care.

Precaution warranted against post-C-section clots
C-sections account for nearly one-third of U.S. births, and though the procedure is common enough, many may not know that the operation significantly increases a new mother's risk of blood clots.

HORMONES

Why it’s not hip to halt hormone replacement therapy
A new study in the journal Menopause shows that the benefits of hormone replacement therapy aren't just hypothetical.

Patching up hormone replacement therapy
As we've reported several times, estrogen replacement therapy - either with or without progesterone - is currently the most effective means of treating menopausal symptoms.

REGULATIONS

FDA opines on its new food safety powers
"Large-scale outbreaks of foodborne illness have recently focused attention on the ability of the U.S. food safety system to protect the public health," writes Michael R. Taylor, the Deputy Commissioner for Foods at the FDA.

TOBACCO

Smokers ill-informed about harm reduction
While the FDA is in the process of assessing how it will regulate modified risk tobacco products, a new study in Harm Reduction Journal reports that smokers remain largely misinformed about the relative safety of these products compared to cigarettes.

Smoke and mirrors behind FDA report on e-cigarettes
An FDA-authored analysis of electronic cigarette contents has just appeared in the Journal of Liquid Chromatography and Related Technologies.

If there is a health scare today, the American Council on Science and Health will most likely have the answer by tomorrow; and for members it will appear in your e-mail. No effort on your part, except to read the answer. All that the ACSH is interested in are the facts and they are prepared to follow them wherever they lead. Who can ask for more?  Please Donate Now!

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