Most foods targeted at children contain high-fructose corn syrup, which is monstrously unhealthy even without the poisonous metallic liquid.
This news doesn't change my previous ongoing advice, which is to read the labels and never, ever eat foods or drink beverages that contain high-fructose corn syrup.
According to an article in today's Washington Post, "the debate arose because arachidonic acid, a component of omega-6 fatty acids, is a building block for some inflammation-related molecules, and there have been fears that it might increase the risk of heart disease." But according to William S. Harris, director of the Metabolism and Nutrition Research Center of the University of South Dakota Sanford School of Medicine:
"That reflects a rather naive understanding of the biochemistry. Omega-6 fatty acids give rise to both pro-inflammatory compounds and anti-inflammatory compounds. To say that they are bad because they produce pro-inflammatory compounds ignores the fact that they give rise to anti-inflammatory compounds as well."Are Omega-6 Fatty Acids good for you? Of course they are!
I couldn't have said it better myself. We call diabetes a preventable disease because it is caused by the absence of healthy foods and daily exercise, which what our bodies are designed for. And it doesn't happen overnight. Our bodies resist for many years, but there is only so much abuse they can take. It's a disease of choice. We choose it every time we decide to eat processed industrial food laden with unhealthy pesticides, fats and additives, void of real nutrients and cooked in a way that is toxic.
The good news is that even people who have diabetes can control it and even reverse it by adopting a healthy diet and lifestyle. The body is an amazing machine and very rewarding when given what it needs to do its job as it's meant to do.
Consumer Reports posted some findings from a report on the health benefits -- or lack thereof -- of industrial breakfast cereals. Here's the good, the bad and the ugly about their report.
The good: Consumer Reports does a nice job on two fronts. First, they highlight how extreme the sugar content is in some cereals. Two major brands are more than half sugar, and nine brands are more than 40% sugar. Obviously, this is candy, not breakfast. The other good thing about the report is that they actually prove that printed serving size is on average different from the serving sizes people actually eat. They found that, on average, children served themselves over 50% more than the serving size printed on the box.
The bad: Consumer Reports then goes on to essentially recommend several cereals because they have a little less sugar and a little more fiber. They recommend Cheerios, Kix, Honey Nut Cheerios, and Life cereals, despite the fact that all contain white sugar or corn syrup, most or all are made with genetically modified grains and all are processed beyond recognition.
The ugly: Consumer Reports completely failed to even mention that healthy cereals exist at all, or that you could easily make your own healthy cereals. Are industrial, processed, genetically modified breakfast cereals really the only choice?
This is why you should never rely on a publication like Consumer Reports for health information. They tend to point you toward middle of the road between health and sickness.
Why not point you toward total health?
Now, if you'll excuse me. I'm going to go have breakfast now. Cheerios? Don't think so. Never going to happen. I'm making myself a whole grain muesli of organic oats, dried organic fruit bits and raw walnuts from my local farmer's market, organic sunflower seeds, organic ground flax seeds, sliced organic bananas and freshly made raw cashew milk. It will have zero sugar, massive amounts of dietary fiber, phytochemicals, natural vitamins and minerals -- and it will taste far better than any cereal you could buy in a box. (Picture shows this morning's breakfast.)
I'm a big advocate of walking for exercise, stress release, mental stimulation, feeling invigorated and generally healing what ails you. I've talked and written extensively about how practicing a healthy and active lifestyle is key to health and happiness. Now, a major and large-scale 25-year study of 77,782 women by the Harvard School of Public Health shows that leading a healthy lifestyle, including keeping your waistline in check, exercising, avoiding smoking and eating healthy food do, in fact, keep you from dying prematurely. Essentially, doing what we've been designed to do instead of living an artificial life full of artificial ingredients, junk foods and remaining out of touch with the world of physical activity what causes chronic illnesses and early death. According to researchers, "Even modest lifestyle changes such as 30 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity (e.g., brisk walking) per day significantly reduced risk of premature death."
Your mom was right: eating your fruits and veggies is good for you. Researchers agree that flavonoids found in fruits and vegetables help protect health. In a recent study conducted by scientists in Italy, results show that flavonoids (antioxidants compounds found in plant foods) may reduce the risk of ovarian cancer.
Some 21,000 American women will be diagnosed with ovarian cancer this year. Only about 6,000 will survive five years or more.
There is no question that whole plant foods such as fruits, vegetables, beans, grains, nuts and seeds are good for us. The question is: Why are we eating processed and adulterated foods instead of fresh, raw, whole organic produce when we know that one causes cancer and the other protects us from cancer?
What this really means is that our bodies are designed to be sustained by a diet consisting of mostly plant-based whole foods. The conspicuous absence of healthy foods makes us sick.
Put another way, eating 8 to 10 servings of fruits and veggies along with beans, whole grains, nuts and seeds will give your body what it expects to receive to its job defending itself from constant attacks from toxins and free radicals responsible for causing cancer and other illnesses. Add daily exercise into the equation and you' are not only equipped with a strong immune system but also with overall optimum health.
Your mother was right. Broccoli is good for you. Researchers at the University of Warwick have found that sulforaphane, a compound found in Broccoli, helps repair heart blood vessels damaged by diabetes. Diabetics are five times more susceptible to heart attacks and strokes due to damaged blood vessels caused high levels of glucose. Sulfuraphane promotes increased production of enzymes, which protect blood vessels against radicals called Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) reducing them in the body by 73%. The study also found that sulforaphane activates a protein called nrf2, which in turn activates beneficial antioxidants and detoxifying enzymes that protect cells and tissues in the body. What we should take from this we are designed to eat vegetables in plentiful amounts. Each vegetable we eat is a power house of nutrients we don't fully understand. Without a healthy diet, the body suffers. By all means, eat broccoli, but the larger message is to eat a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, along with grains, beans, nuts and seeds--all plant foods full of whole nutrients of the diet that Mother Nature intended for us to eat.
What are the benefits of eating a natural, organic vegetarian diet? One way to find out is to read the volumes of scientific data about how organic plant foods benefit health. Another way is to see how people who "walk the walk" get sick -- or don't get sick.
Monks on the Greece's Mount Athos eat vegan for most of the year, and for the remainder are mostly vegetarian. They eat wild fish and octopus very occasionally.
The produce they eat isn't from the industrialized food system, but from their own gardens.
So how are they doing health-wise? It's astonishing, really. A major study of their health revealed that, even though monks often live beyond 100 years of age, they have zero incidents of the following diseases:
2. lung bowel and bladder cancer
And they have almost no heart disease, cardiac arrests or strokes.
In fact, they're among the most healthy populations on Earth. Read more about it on my other blog, The Spartan Diet blog.
Everybody knows that organic foods are better for you, but conventional produce is cheaper, right?
Well, not so fast. It depends on what you're buying. There's no question that conventional produce is, on average, cheaper per pound than organic alternatives, and probably contains more calories-per-dollar.
However, research in the past few years has shown dramatically higher concentrations of health-boosting nutrients in organic foods, including anti-oxidants, vitamins and substances that enable the body to process nutrients.
So when you pay for produce, what is it that you're buying? Are you looking for calories? Or nutrition? It's just possible that on a nutritional basis, you get more for your money with organic.
Plus, avoiding the toxins in conventional produce is priceless.
Read all about this in my brand-new column at Environmental Living!
It's well known that blueberries are, nutritiously speaking, a power-house fruit. But a recent study conducted by Rutgers University in collaboration with the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) shows that organic blueberries contain higher values of ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) than conventionally grown blueberries. In other words, organic blueberries are better at protecting against nasty radicals that cause damage at a cellular level, including cancer. Although researchers try to warn against making sweeping conclusions (and why wouldn't they given that the USDA is involved) it's clear that food grown and eaten in its most natural state and without the use of artificial fertilizers and pesticides are better for you. When a fruit or vegetable plant is allowed to grow in its most wild form without genetic modification and it's allowed to develop it's own natural defenses, without pesticides, the most nutritious and better for you such plant will be.
A new study commissioned by Organic Consumers Association finds that some leading "organic" brand personal care products that are not USDA certified contain the carcinogenic 1,4-dioxane. Although 1,4-dioxane is commonly used in conventionally produced personal care products, the USDA National Organic Program prohibits the use of Dioxane in organic products seeking certification by the USDA. The study found that many well known "organic" brand name companies' personal care products including shampoos, body washers and lotions make use of the toxic practice known as ethoxylation. Some unscrupulous "organic companies" use Ethoxylation as an easy way to make harsh chemicals feel soft.
This shameful practice involves using the cancer-causing petrochemical Ethylene Oxide, which produces Dioxane as a by-product. Dioxane not only causes cancer as well as kidney, neurological and respiratory damage but it is also a major groundwater contaminant according to the California Environmental Protection Agency. For a complete list of tested products and test results click on link here.
What Can You Do About It?
Boycott deceitful "organic" companies that have betrayed our trust in their products--they have been poisoning us and the environment. It's unforgivable how some companies are exploiting unsuspecting consumers who pay a premium for products they believe are free of harmful chemicals that can cause cancer and pollute the environment. It's time to take action; use your purchasing power and boycott unscrupulous companies who use toxics out of greed and at the expense of our health and that of the environment. Reward companies who are true to the organic movement and truthful in their claims about the products they make.
The best way to ensure that products have been produced in accordance to the USDA National Organic Program is by purchasing only products emblazoned with the USDA certified organic label. As Ronnie Cummins, Executive Director of the OCA, said in a statement: "The practice of ethoxylating ingredients or using other petroleum compounds must end for natural personal care, and is that much more outrageous in so-called 'organics' brand products." The OCA recommends avoiding products with unfamiliar and unpronounceable ingredients. Read labels carefully and avoid buying products that contain ingredients with words such as “myreth,” “oleth,” “laureth,” “ceteareth,” or other words ending in “eth” (which implies the ethoxylation process that generates 1,4-Dioxane).
Shame on companies deceiving consumers and selling products containing carcinogenics. Boycott these decietful companies until they publicly commit to stop using toxicants in their products that poison consumers and the environment:
Nature's Gate Organics
Giovanni Organic Cosmetics
Kiss My Face
365* Everyday Value by Whole Foods
Circle of Friends
A new study counters the myth that people who are obese and people who smoke cost more to treat for healthcare than thin non-smokers do. The study, conducted by the Netherlands' National Institute for Public Health and the Environment, found that unhealthy people are cheaper to treat because they die younger, and dead people don't need healthcare. What this ridiculous study didn't take into account was that dead people don't also don't contribute to the economy or pay taxes.
New research suggests that some of the differences between humans and chimpanzees thought to be genetic may in fact be diet related. In a study by German and Chinese scientists, four groups of mice were fed, respectively: 1) normal lab-mice pellets; 2) the same diet as zoo chimpanzees (fruits, vegetables and yogurt); 3) food from the scientist's cafeteria; and 4) all McDonald's diet. The most surprising finding is that mice expressed various genes differently depending on diet; and in the case of some genes showed some of the differences between human and chimpanzee genes thought to be determined by DNA rather than diet. Another likely take-away: The expression of genes, especially in the liver, of vegetarians is likely to differ from the expression of genes in the livers of people who eat a standard American diet. In other news, zoos feed yogurt to Chimpanzees. ; )
Newsweek reports on recent testing that shows humans carry around potentially toxic chemicals in our bodies that come from ordinary household cleaners and objects. From the article: "Hundreds of animal and test-tube studies suggest that low-dose exposures, particularly during gestation, may later lead to breast and prostate cancer, abnormalities in the reproductive tract and behavioral problems, among other things."
Researchers have found that a diet rich in protein is more effective at preventing hunger pangs than diets rich in carbs and fats. The study revealed that protein suppresses hunger by regulating the secretion of a hunger-producing hormone called ghrelin, which is secreted in the stomach to stimulate hunger. When protein is consumed, the body secretes less ghrelin, which otherwise produces feelings of hunger. Fat was found to be the least effective in suppressing hunger. The take-away here is that it's important to eat a well balanced diet at every meal, consisting of real food rich in protein but also good fats and carbohydrates. Eating only protein or too much of it is not the answer to losing weight -- eating a healthy balanced diet and exercising everyday is. Both fat and carbohydrates are essential for other bodily functions.
New studies from both Sweden and India show that regular yoga provides the following benefits: lower blood sugar; reduction in weight; lower triglycerides; higher "good" cholesterol; reduction in anxiety, stress and depression; higher optimism; increase in antioxidants; and lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol.
Yet another round of research is proving the link between eating fruits and vegetables and avoiding cancer. Two sets of researchers tested broccoli, cabbage and "dark berries," and the effect these foods had on likelihood of cancer. However, the take-away on this one was this: "Cooking can reduce 60 to 90 percent of ITCs, (isothiocyanates)," which is one of the cancer-fighting properties of many fruits and vegetables. So eat foods as whole and raw as possible. Also: Scientists also continue to falsely spin their findings as "fruits and vegetables reduce cancer risk," when, in reality, the more accurate way to communicate these findings is that the unnatural absence of plentiful fruits and vegetables in the diet is a leading CAUSE of cancer.
Yet another study shows whole foods cut the risk of cancer. In this case, researchers at the University of California, San Francisco, found "reduced risk among adults who ate two or more servings of whole grains each day compared with those who ate less than one serving a day. They also noted about a 35 percent reduction in risk among individuals who ate the highest amount of fiber (26.5 grams per day or more) compared with those who ate the least (15.6 grams per day or less)."
A new book called Generation Digital: Politics, Commerce and Childhood in the Age of the Internet by Kathryn C. Montgomery (an expert on children, teens, media and online marketing at American University’s School of Communication) claims that online and in-game advertising by junk food companies are partly to blame for the childhood obesity epidemic. Children have become a "coveted consumer demographic" by advertisers, she says. "Kids are constantly exposed to [junk food] ads and pester their parents into buying the unhealthy foods or, having money of their own, kids completely bypass their parents and purchase the items themselves."
In the biggest study of its kind ever conducted, scientists have discovered that foods "contain up to 40 per cent more nutrients if they are grown without chemical fertilizers and pesticides." The study, which was conducted at Newcastle University and funded by the European Union and food companies, found that the "health benefits were so striking that moving to organic food was the equivalent of eating an extra portion of fruit and vegetables every day."
New research shows that eating garlic is effective for lowering high blood pressure and protecting against cardiovascular disesase. The health benefits from eating garlic result when garlic is metabolized by the body and compounds in garlic enter the cardiovascular system, interacting with red blood cells. This interaction triggers a release of hydrogen sulfide (H2S), a toxic compound that smells like rotten eggs, which help relax arteries. As we get older, our bodies produce less H2S. The study was conducted by the Univerity of Alabama Birmingham and funded by the American Heart Association and the National Institutes of Health. But keep in mind that researchers used fresh raw garlic equivalent to two cloves. Forget garlic pills, they don't work. Make some hummus with fresh extra raw garlic or dressings with fresh garlic and you'll get enough H2S to keep your heart content.
A compound called lupeol, which is found in mangoes, grapes, strawberries, vegetables, olive seed, figs and saw palmeto, has been found to slow or kill the growth of cancer cells in the nose, oral cavity, throat, voice box, thyroid and salivary glands, according to research at the University of Hong Kong. Such cancers are typically caused by "smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, chewing betel nut and diets rich in preserved foods, like salted fish," according to a Reuters article.
According to a recent survey by Scarborough Research, San Francisco and Seattle have the highest percentage of organic consumers with 35 and 32 percent, respectively. Not surprisingly, the survey also found that, "organics consumers are 272 percent more likely than the average consumer to have shopped at Whole Foods during the past week. By contrast, they are 21 percent less likely to have shopped Wal-Mart Supercenter during this timeframe." To find out how other cities rank check out the above link.
An Ohio State University study suggests that powerful anthocyanins, responsible for the deep dark blue, purple and red colors in fruits and vegetables, may lower the risk of colon cancer. These potent compounds found in cherries, grapes, blueberries, blackberries, purple corn, elderberries, eggplants and other red and purple produce, were found to slow the growth of cancer in rats and human colon cancer cells. According to the researchers, “all fruits and vegetables that are rich in anthocyanins have compounds that can slow down the growth of colon cancer cells, whether in experiments in laboratory dishes or inside the body.”
A study of almost 1,800 children by the University of Colorado and University of Florida finds that a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids lowers risk of developing diabetes by preventing inflammation in the pancreatic insulin-producing cells. Omega 3 fatty acids keep the body from attacking the cells responsible for insulin production such as in an autoimmune response. According to the study, the amount of omega-3s in foods today is significantly less than the amount found in food a century ago; "the foods we are eating now are qualitatively much different than those produced on a 1900s-era farm." The scientists add that "animals commercially raised today, are often fed grains rich in omega-6 fatty acids, which can promote inflammation." Previous research studies on animals have shown that the inflammation in the insulin-producing cells triggers diabetes.
A new study by Kasier Permanente found that the correlation of alcohol consumption and breast cancer is linked to the quantity of alcohol, and not affected by the source -- hard liquor, beer or wine. The study of 70,033 multi-ethnic women, who received health examinations between 1978 and 1985, shows that 2,829 of them developed breast cancer by 2004. Researchers found that drinking three or more alcoholic beverages a day increases breast cancer risk as much as smoking an entire packet of cigarettes or more per day.
When you go to the store, conventional foods are on average cheaper than organic. But when you weigh all costs associated with foods -- farm energy use, tax-funded subsidies for non-organic, etc. -- organic is cheaper for the public overall. One study noted, for example, that if U.S. organic food consumption grows by just 10 percent by 2010, we will eliminate the need to pay for, import, then later breathe, 2.9 billion barrels of oil per year.
Junk science degrades the public's ability to sort out facts from falsehoods. A recent study published by the New England Journal of Medicine found that fat people are the cause of the obesity epidemic. That's right, the "researchers" from the highly acclaimed Harvard Medical School and the University of California found that fat people, not poor diet and sedentary lifestyle are to be blamed for making others fat. A recent article by Mike Adams of News Target.com perfectly illustrates the facts behind junk science and talks about how a manufacturer of aspartame funded its own research to show that aspartame is safe for consumption.
The United States spends more on heath care than any other Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) country, according to a new study by the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Princeton University. Another study by the Kaiser Family Foundation reports that health care premiums have gone up by 79% since 2001.
Americans spend 15.3% of our gross domestic product on health care. The tragic irony is that both high health care costs and poor health result from overconsumption of junk food, which many people buy because it's cheaper. Here's an oversimplified summary of the problem:
1. U.S. taxpayers pay for subsidies to food companies (including farmers) that make the most unhealthy food much cheaper than healthy food.
2. In order to save money, the public eats cheap, subsidized junk food.
3. All this junk food creates an epidemic of preventable diseases, including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer and others.
4. These tens of millions of people, sick from bad food, overburden our health care system and needlessly drive costs through the roof
5. Meanwhile, doctors radically overemphasize drugs and technolgy, while neglecting advice about diet and excercise.
6. The end result is an unhealthy nation that spends more than anyone else on "health."
We have robots that assist surgery, incredible advances in drugs and probably more MRI machines than the rest of the world combined. But we don't have enough doctors qualified to advise patients on how to stop eating themselves to death.
My column for today's issue of the Vegetarian Organic Blog newsletter, about the dangers of common food additives, pointed to recent research in Britain about the dangers of -- and widespread overconsumption of -- these chemicals and substances lurking in our food supply. What I didn't mention was our own government's total failure to protect Americans from additives. An FDA Q&A page reveals how lax the government is about this vital health issue:
"Do color additives in food cause hyperactivity?
Although this theory was popularized in the 1970's, well-controlled studies conducted since then have produced no evidence that food color additives cause hyperactivity or learning disabilities in children. A Consensus Development Panel of the National Institutes of Health concluded in 1982 that there was no scientific evidence to support the claim that colorings or other food additives cause hyperactivity. The panel said that elimination diets should not be used universally to treat childhood hyperactivity, since there is no scientific evidence to predict which children may benefit."
This is yet another reason why you cannot trust the FDA. While the UK government is funding new research and discovering the facts about additives available in the supermarkets today, the U.S. government points to inadequate studies conducted a quarter of a century ago to support it's claim that additives are OK.
A research project carried out for the past 27 years, which compares two side-by-side fields -- one organic, one conventional -- has found that organic fields out-produce conventional ones, and are nearly drought-proof as well. The project, supervised by Dr. Paul Hepperly, research director of the Rodale Institute in Kutztown, Pennsylvania, found that an organic field with identical crops catches up with the conventional field in five years, and dramatically out-produces it in ten years. Best of all, the organic field becomes nearly drought resistant, while the conventional field remains vulnerable.
Researchers at Mayo Clinic have found that eating flaxseed can provide relief to postmenopausal women who don't take estrogen and experience hot flashes. Participants who completed the trial showed on average a 57% decrease in the frequency of hot flashes.
A food coloring called Red 2G, used to color hamburger meat and breakfast sausages, has been found by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) to cause cancer by disrupting the genetic materials of cells.
A 10-year study found that levels of the flavonoids quercetin and kaempferol were between 79 and 97 per cent higher in organic tomatoes compared with conventionally grown -- that's almost twice the antioxidants.
The American College of Nutrition has found that vegetables were healthier in the 1950s than today. The decline in the nutritional value of common vegetables is due largely to the development of crop strains that provide higher and ever higher yields. The short-term solution: Buy as much of your produce as possible at farmer's markets -- or grow it yourself.
A dramatic increase in childhood food allergies in the U.S. may be linked to genetically modified foods. Since 1996, food scientists have been inserting bacteria, virus and other genes into to the DNA of soy, corn, cottonseed and canola plants, and allergies have risen dramatically since then.
The image of the America food and beverage industry is declining rapidly as consumers increasingly make the link between unhealthy foods and the industry that knowingly makes it unhealthy in order to boost revenue. A recent I-Rep, Ipsos’ biannual survey on perceptions of leading industries and large companies found that "trans-fats, obesity and poor nutritional value" are increasingly associated with the industry that sells it all to us.
New research in Britain has found that a food preservative called sodium benzoate -- commonly used in sodas like Fanta, Pepsi Max, Sprite, Oasis and Dr Pepper, as well as thousands of canned and jar food products -- can actually "switch off" important functions of DNA, leading to cirrhosis of the liver, Parkinson's and other diseases. Sodium benzoate mixed with vitamin C has previously been found to cause cancer. So now the list of diseases cause by soft drinks looks like this:
* cirrhosis of the liver
Millions of people drink soda every day. In addition to causing all these diseases, soda displaces water in the diet, which of course is needed for healthy functioning of all human organs.
Children conceived during summer (June through August) tend to score lower on math and language tests. The likely reason: Seasonal pesticide use.
NewScientist reports that "record levels of synthetic fragrances from everyday cleaning, deodorising and beauty products have been found in the breast milk of American women." The report is based on study conducted by Kurunthachalam Kannan of New York state's Department of Health. He found that levels of artificial chemicals called polycyclic musks, which may cause developmental and reproductive problems, are five times higher in American women today than levels in European women studied almost ten years ago. This high concentration is almost certainly the result of the widespread use of these chemicals in everyday household products.
Bristol University researchers have found that high blood pressure, or hypertension, is triggered by problems in the brain, not the heart as previously believed. For researchers, their finding suggests new areas for drug research that would enable people to survive toxic diets longer. For you and me, nothing has changed: Avoid hypertension by eating well and exercising regularly.
A study in the UK has found that children with higher IQs are more likely to grow up to be vegetarians. They do not know if the link exists because smart people choose vegetarianism, or if other factors (such as childhood affluence and education) increases the chances of both intelligence and inclination to go veggie. Either way, vegetarianism is a smart choice!
Two new studies reveal a link between health problems and very low levels of exposure to toxic chemicals. One study found a link between exposure to Bisphenol-A, which is found in some plastic drinking bottles and food cans, can promote prostate cancer. Another study revealed tiny amounts of pesticides (found, of course, in non-organic foods) can trigger allergies, including asthma. Take action: Avoid drinking out of polycarbonate plastic "sports" bottles and avoid canned foods (fresh is better tasting, and better for you anyway). And choose organic whenever you can!
With pancreatic cancer having high mortality rates and patients surviving only an average of one year, this discovery may play a significant role in future cancer treatments. Researchers were able to identify the process of how normal stem cells in the pancreas become cancerous. When a person smokes, chemicals called plycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are released, which in turn prevent communication between the cells in the body. For the first time, this research pinpoints how these toxic PAH chemicals cause cancer not by initiating it but by promoting it. In other words, these carcinogenic PAH compounds don't mutate healthy cells but rather trigger existing mutated cells to grow and multiply.
It is estimated that 37,000 Americans will be diagonosed with pancreatic cancer in 2007 making these findings important for the discovery of treatments, including dietary changes, to effectively fight and even reverse cancer of the pancreas.
It's also important to note that harmful PAHs can form when substances with certain proteins, including food, are burned. This is especially relevant when cooking foods that contain proteins and even more relevant when grilling or frying meat.
According to experts at the UT Southwestern Medical Center, traditions of "eating" and "sitting down" too much during the holidays may pose a health threat for the six million Americans who are unaware they have diabetes but have not been diagnosed. Binge eating and a conspicuous lack of physical activity during the holidays can be deadly for those are afflicted but undiagnosed. Experts recommend those who are older, obese and with a family history of diabetes to see doctor for diabetes test.
Experiencing stress and anxiety makes people prone to developing Alzheimers's Disease according a study in mice conducted by David Holtzman at Washington University in St Louis, Missouri. Holtzman states that stress may cause a sharp increase in brain proteins called amyloid associated with the illness. Other studies have shown correlation between increased levels of amyloid beta peptide and risk of dementia in people. Stress is the underlying cause of many illnesses. It's crucial to find ways to manage stress and learn to stay relaxed.
A "study of more than 5,000 Norwegian 15- and 16-year-olds showed a clear and direct association between soft drink intake and hyperactivity, and a more complex link with other mental and behavioral disorders."
One group of people with type-2 diabetes was put on a vegan diet, and another group was put on a conventional lowfat American Diabetes Association diet. The vegan dieters lowered their blood sugar more and lost more weight, lowered their cholesterol more and ended up with better kidney function, according to the report published in Diabetes Care, a journal published by the American Diabetes Association. Participants said the vegan diet was easier to stay on because they didn't have to limit their portions or count calories. After 22 weeks on the diet, 43 percent of those on the vegan diet were able to stop taking their diabetes drugs or reduce doses, compared with 26 percent of those on the standard diet.
Hormones given to cows, then ingested by women as meat and dairy products, may radically increase the likelihood of conceiving twins, according to a new study, which shows that vegan women are one-fifth as likely as cows-milk drinking women to have twins.
Fatty foods like pork pies and clotted cream predispose the English to lifestyle diseases like diabetes and heart disease. But traditional English fare can't hold a candle to American junk food when it comes to destroying the human body. Although in both countries the wealthy tend to be healthier than the poor, the richest Americans are sicker than the poorest English, according to a new study. The reason? What else? Too much junk food and not enough exercise.
"Playing video games can give boys a physical workout that raises their blood pressure and heart rate and burn as many calories as brisk walking or cycling, US researchers say."
Fat levels in junk food at McDonald's and KFC VARIES WILDLY from country to country, city to city and store to store, and the use of deadly trans fats -- which kills up to 75,000 Americans per year -- varies as well, according to a new international study. A KFC meal in some countries, for example, contains 19 grams of trans fats, but only one gram of trans fats in Germany for the very same meal. It appears that the junk food giants use trans fats wherever they can get away with it -- where local education levels about food and health are lower -- because it costs much less.
University of Mississippi researchers have shown how moderate alcohol consumption leads to the growth of tumors. The researchers gave mice the equivalent to 2-4 glasses of alcohol per day and found that the alcohol dramatically increases "microvessels" -- tiny blood vessels too small to be seen with the naked eye -- which feeds tumors and leads to rapid and sustained tumor growth. Alcohol was already known to increase the risk and virulency of cancer, but this study shows how.
Researchers have discovered that when meat is charred at high temperatures during barbecuing, a chemical compound called PhIP is formed that has been found to encourage the growth of prostate cancer in rats. Their study was presented at a meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research.
A new study published in the April, 2006, issue of Nutrition Reviews reviewed data from 87 previous studies and found that vegetarian diets definitely lead to weight loss for those who switch to vegetarianism -- up to one pound per week -- and that vegetarian foods are more efficiently burned than meat is (meaning that it's not so easily converted to fat).
Raspberries may contain as much as 10 times more antioxidants than tomatoes or broccoli and have some antioxidants found in almost no other foods, according to a recent study.
Drinking alcohol increases the risk of cancer of the mouth, larynx, oesophagus, liver, colon and breast. It may also be linked with pancreas and lung cancers, according to a report at CNN.com. The researchers advised people to drink moderately, rather than giving it up, based on the belief that alcohol protects against cardiovascular disease. However, this only makes sense in a culture (like ours) where people aren't getting antioxidants from fruits and vegies. Our advice: Ban alcohol completely, and load up on organic vegetarian foods. You'll minimize your chances of getting cancer -- and cardiovascular disease -- and you get the added benefit of not killing someone in a car or forming a painful, lifelong addiction.
A new study of French adults provides new details about the link between high fiber and low heart disease risk. Researchers found that whole grains are linked to lower body mass index (BMI), blood pressure and levels of a blood protein called homocysteine, which is connected to heart disease risk. Fruit fiber is associated with lower blood pressure and less abdominal fat. Fiber from vegetables appears to lower the risk of high blood pressure and high homocysteine concentrations. And fiber from nuts, dried fruit and seeds is linked to a lower BMI, a lesser risk of abdominal obesity and lower blood sugar levels. As is common with scientific findings, the information is expressed as "increased fiber lowers heart risk." The reality is that high fiber is natural to humans and has been part of our diet for millions of years. The unnatural reduction of fiber is very, very recent to humans and causes heart disease.
The slow stretches and meditations of yoga don't burn calories like a run on the treadmill. But a new study suggests it might help people keep weight off in middle age. Researchers found that overweight people in their 50s who regularly practiced yoga lost about five pounds over 10 years, while a group in the same age range gained about 13 1/2 pounds over the same period. Middle-aged people of normal weight generally put on pounds over 10 years, but those who did yoga gained less weight than those who didn't practice yoga.
Women with breast cancer who walk at least an hour a week have a better chance of beating the disease than those who don't exercise at all, researchers said on Tuesday.
If your youngster is sassy, squirmy, or just plan hyperactive, caffeinated cola drinks could be to blame, a new study suggests.
Two out of three Americans with type-2 diabetes do not have their disease under control and risk early deaths from stroke, heart attack or kidney failure as well as blindness and limb loss, according to a report published on Wednesday.
Eating a low-fat diet packed with vegetables, fruit, beans and whole grains reduces levels of "bad" cholesterol twice as much as eating a low-fat diet that's heavy on processed foods, a small study has found.
Diets too low in fat may be responsible for stubborn bulges on bellies, thighs and butts, according to a new study. Dieters trying slim down by following extremely low-fat diets may be causing the exact opposite results, according to new research from the University of Washington at St. Louis. Eating at least small amounts of dietary fats, such as fish oils, might be a better way to kick-start fat-burning, say researchers.
Researchers from Harvard Medical School and the Harvard School of Public Health have examined the effect of eating nuts on cardiovascular health, reports the Harvard Men’s Health Watch. "Their work shows that nuts really are healthy, especially for men at risk for heart disease," says Dr. Harvey B. Simon, editor.
While sports and energy drinks help athletes re-hydrate after a long workout, if consumed on a regular basis they can damage teeth. These beverages may cause irreversible damage to dental enamel, potentially resulting in severe tooth decay according to a study reported in the January/February issue of General Dentistry, the Academy of General Dentistry ’s clinical, peer-reviewed journal. Dental enamel is the thin, outer layer of hard tissue that helps maintain the tooth structure and shape, while protecting it from decay.
Caffeine intake makes insulin more resistant to changes in blood sugar levels, Canadian researchers report. This effect was observed both in patients with and those without diabetes and could not be reversed with regular exercise or weight.
A compound used by blueberries and grapes to fight off fungal infections could help lower cholesterol, U.S. researchers reported on Tuesday. The compound, called pterostilbene, also helps regulate blood sugar and might help fight type-2 diabetes, the researchers told a meeting of the American Chemical Society in Philadelphia. The finding adds to a growing list of reasons to eat colorful fruit, especially blueberries, which are rich in compounds known as antioxidants. These molecules battle cell and DNA damage involved in cancer, heart disease, diabetes and perhaps also brain degeneration.
Nearly a third of American adults have high blood pressure, putting them at greater risk of stroke, heart attack, kidney failure and other problems, according to a new government analysis. The obesity epidemic and an aging population are to blame, experts say. Just over a decade ago, closer to one in four Americans had high blood pressure, and two decades ago the rate actually was declining.
Heart disease and diabetes get all the attention, but expanding waistlines increase the risk for at least nine types of cancer, too. And with the obesity epidemic showing no signs of waning, specialists say they need to better understand how fat cells fuels cancer growth so they might fight back.
Isolated soy protein added to the diets of 14 men, all military veterans under treatment for advanced stages of type 2 diabetes, significantly lowered unwanted proteins in their urine and slightly raised desired HDL cholesterol levels in their blood, researchers say. The two improved areas are linked to kidney disease and coronary heart disease, respectively, in patients with type 2 diabetes.
A new report on American eating habits reveals that almost a quarter of the calories we consume come from nutrient-poor selections – better known as “junk food.” This surprising fact clashes with the advice of many nutrition experts on how to eat more healthfully and control weight. To counteract the effect of escalating portion sizes, many experts recommend decreasing the amounts of the foods we eat.
Rats fed artificial sweeteners ate three times the calories of rats given sugar, a finding the study's authors said suggests sugar-free foods may play a role in the nation's obesity epidemic.
Choosing a diet soft drink over a regular, sugar-packed beverage may not be the best way to fight obesity, according to new research from Purdue University. But the researchers said this doesn't mean you should grab a regularly sweetened soft drink instead. Professor Terry Davidson and associate professor Susan Swithers, both in the Department of Psychological Sciences, found that artificial sweeteners may disrupt the body's natural ability to "count" calories based on foods' sweetness. This finding may explain why increasing numbers of people in the United States lack the natural ability to regulate food intake and body weight.
High-protein diets of the kind popularised by Robert Atkins may reduce a woman's chance of conceiving, according to a study presented at a fertility conference. The research -- conducted on mice -- found that a diet containing 25 percent protein disrupted the normal genetic imprinting pattern in early embryos. It also had an impact on embryos that were transferred to other uteruses.
Italian researchers found children denied access to television for just one week experienced a 30% jump in their melatonin levels. The hormone is thought to prevent the early onset of puberty. If confirmed, this would be the first sign of a direct physiological impact on television watching upon the young.
Chugging more than one sugar-sweetened soft drink a day appears to significantly increase a woman's chances of developing diabetes, says a Harvard study that found the extra sugar does more than just add pounds. Women in the study who drank at least one sugar-sweetened soda a day were 85 percent more likely to develop type 2 diabetes than those who drank less, said Matthias B. Schulze, who presented the Harvard School of Public Health research at the American Diabetes Association's 64th scientific sessions.
Junk foods such as sugary sodas and chips make up nearly one-third of calories in the U.S. diet, researchers said on Tuesday. A study of 4,700 adults showed that, despite the increased popularity of low-carbohydrate diets, soft drinks and pastries pile on more calories in the daily diet than anything else. Reuters
UCSF scientists are publishing sweet results of a study examining chocolate’s effects on blood vessel function in healthy people. The team reports that small daily doses of flavonoid-rich dark chocolate consumed over a two-week period improved blood vessels’ ability to dilate, or expand. They also report that a particular flavonoid thought to be beneficial for blood vessel function, epicatechin, was absorbed at high levels in the blood. Press Release
School programs discouraging carbonated drinks appear to be effective in reducing obesity among children, a new study suggests -- the first research to document that such programs work. Associated Press
People who say they are addicted to chocolate or pizza may not be exaggerating, U.S.-based scientists said on Tuesday. A brain scan study of normal, hungry people showed their brains lit up when they saw and smelled their favorite foods in much the same way as the brains of cocaine addicts when they think about their next snort. Reuters
Leptin, a hormone that affects weight and appetite, apparently helps wire the brain in ways that might set an animal on a lifetime path to slenderness or obesity, two teams of U.S. researchers said on Thursday. Reuters
Nine out of 10 toddlers are allowed to eat junk food. The survey of 2,000 parents by Mother and Baby magazine and Cow & Gate found children's favourite foods include chocolate and crisps. Eight out of 10 parents admitted their children had worse diets than they had at that age. But few thought they were to blame. BBC
Like most everything else, sleep is best done in moderation. Spending too many hours in bed each night can cause as many problems as getting too few hours of sack time, according to a University of California, San Diego study in the journal Psychosomatic Medicine. The study found people who sleep more than eight hours a night (long sleepers) and people who get less than seven hours of slumber both report more sleep complaints than people who get just the right amount of shuteye -- between seven and eight hours per night. HealthDay
Even doctors need medical help once in a while, and that's how Dr. Richard Usatine discovered yoga. The former UCLA medical school professor suffered a back injury in a car accident. After a year of failed attempts to get rid of the pain, Usatine was willing to try anything. He went to see a friend and colleague who specialized in physical medicine. The prescription came as a surprise. Try yoga, the friend said. Yoga worked so well that Usatine now recommends the ancient practice to patients who complain about stress-related conditions. He also researched yoga and its potential benefits for 20 health conditions in a book called "Yoga Rx." The book, which recommends yoga for a range of problems from asthma to back pain to irritable bowel syndrome, was published last year with yoga therapist Larry Payne. Los Angeles Daily News
Researchers say they've found more evidence of a link between a rapid rise in obesity and a corn product used to sweeten soft drinks and food since the 1970s. The researchers examined consumption records from the U.S. Department of Agriculture for 1967-2000 and combined that with previous research and their own analyses. The data showed an increase in the use of high-fructose corn sweeteners in the late 1970s and 1980s "coincidental with the epidemic of obesity," said one of the researchers, Dr. George Bray, a longtime obesity scientist with Louisiana State University System's Pennington Biomedical Research Center. Associated Press
Acupuncture is a useful, cost-effective treatment for patients who suffer from chronic headaches or migraine, American researchers said on Monday. In one of the largest randomized studies to assess the effectiveness of the ancient Chinese treatment, scientists found it worked better than just conventional treatments alone. Reuters
Fizzy drinks are the major cause of tooth erosion in British teenagers but many parents are not aware of the problem, researchers said on Friday. The sodas and pop drunk by up to 92 percent of UK 14-year-olds wear away the enamel protective coating on teeth. Dental erosion weakens teeth and can cause thinning or chipping of the tooth edges. Reuters
Americans are sitting around and eating themselves to death, with obesity closing in on tobacco as the nation's No. 1 underlying preventable killer. Associated Press
Americans are eating more fat and cholesterol as "low-carb" diets grow in popularity, but people do not seem to be losing weight and they are putting their health at risk, U.S. researchers said on Friday. Reuters
Extracts of sage and lemon balm may help to improve memory and behavioral problems in people with Alzheimer's disease and other types of dementia, scientists said Friday. Reuters
An anthropological autopsy of 70 gladiators found the Romans to be overweight vegetarians who fought barefoot, according to University of Vienna scientists. The Washington Times
Anti-bacterial soaps do not deliver the type of protection from common health ailments that consumers expect, according to a study. NewsDay
Gaining weight may be a serious risk factor for breast cancer, the American Cancer Society said on Wednesday. Reuters
Excessive television watching and fat-laden fast food menus are working together to make U.S. children fatter and fatter, two separate reports said on Tuesday. Reuters
Madison Avenue was challenged again yesterday over the way it markets food to children, as a new report was released suggesting that advertising contributes to childhood obesity. The New York Times
Eating at least three apples a day or other sources of dietary fiber such as cereals significantly cuts the risk of death from heart disease, researchers said on Monday. Reuters
Eating a meat-free, vegetarian diet may reduce the risk of colorectal cancer, new research suggests. Reuters
Eating a diet rich in antioxidants, such as vitamin E, appears to ward off diabetes, new research reports. Reuters
The use of antibiotics appears to be associated with an increased risk of breast cancer and fatal breast cancer, according to the results of a new study reported in this week's issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association. Reuters
People who consume plenty of whole-grain foods, particularly fiber-rich cereals, may be less likely to develop health conditions that put them at increased risk of diabetes, new research suggests. Reuters
A long-awaited nutrition report calls for a major drop in how much salt Americans eat every day, even though the average person already consumes far more than is recommended. Associated Press
Smoking damages almost all aspects of sexual, reproductive and child health, reveals a "shocking" new report. NewScientist
Infants who experience fevers before their first birthday are less likely to develop allergies by ages six or seven, according to a new study funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The study, published today in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, lends support to the well-known "hygiene hypothesis," which contends that early exposure to infections might protect children against allergic diseases in later years. ScienceDaily
The immune response of animals exposed to acute stress – about two hours of restraint – was two to four times higher compared to non-stressed animals. This was true when the animals' skin was treated with chemical or protein antigens immediately after a stressful event. An antigen is any substance that the immune system reacts to by producing cells and antibodies. ScienceDaily
Researchers at the Sleep/Wake Research Centre at Massey University have found a short afternoon nap at work can significantly improve workers' alertness and productivity. Stuff
Feelings of depression and low self-esteem plague children as they advance through middle school because they get increasingly less sleep, according to a new study of 2,259 Illinois students. "Sleep clearly played a significant role in predicting depressive symptoms and self-esteem during adolescence," says psychologist Jean Rhodes, Ph.D., of the University of Massachusetts, Boston. The research appears in the January-February issue of Child Development. Press Release
The longer white infants from low-income families are breast-fed, the less likely they will be overweight as young children, researchers said on Monday. Reuters
Minor manipulations of a mother's diet can hugely affect the lifespan of her children, suggests a new study of mice. "At the two extremes we looked at, the dietary changes increased the difference in lifespan by more than 50 per cent," says Susan Ozanne, who performed the research with Nicholas Hales at Cambridge University, UK. "In humans, this could equate to the difference between reaching 50 and living to be 75 years old," she says. The research joins existing evidence that maternal diets in humans can have a life-long impact. NewScientist
Farmed salmon contains far more toxic chemicals than wild salmon -- high enough to suggest that fish-eaters limit how much they eat, U.S. researchers said on Thursday. Reuters
Male sperm counts have fallen by almost a third since 1989, with factors such as drinking and obesity possibly to blame, according to a British study. AFP
Just half a teaspoon of cinnamon a day significantly reduces blood sugar levels in diabetics, a new study has found. The effect, which can be produced even by soaking a cinnamon stick your tea, could also benefit millions of non-diabetics who have blood sugar problem but are unaware of it. NewScientist.com
Early signs of heart disease have been found in US children. About one in seven US schoolchildren has three or more risk factors of "metabolic syndrome" - a precursor to heart disease and diabetes. Girls were particularly at risk, being 50 per cent more likely to have three risk factors. And over half of the children participating in the new study had at least one of the risk factors predisposing them to deadly cardiovascular conditions. NewScientist
Exercise fanatics may be right -- getting out and moving increases blood flow in the brain, U.S. researchers said on Saturday. Reuters
Eating certain foods can help protect you from heart disease, some types of cancers and other illnesses. But can your diet also help protect your brain if you should suffer a stroke or accidental head injury? Or keep your thinking and memory skills strong as you age? Some scientists believe it might. Society for Neuroscience
There's sweet news about hot cocoa: Researchers at Cornell University have shown that the popular winter beverage contains more antioxidants per cup than a similar serving of red wine or tea and may be a healthier choice. The study adds to growing evidence of the health benefits of cocoa and points to a tasty alternative in the quest to maintain a diet rich in healthy antioxidants, chemicals that have been shown to fight cancer, heart disease and aging, the researchers say. ScienceDaily
Canadian men who consume comparatively high amounts of dairy products have an increased risk of testicular cancer, according to a new study. Reuters
Experts at the Medical Research Council found most fast food is very dense in calories - you only need a small amount to bump up your calorific intake. They found that these "energy dense" foods can fool people into consuming more calories than the body needs. The research is published in the journal Obesity Reviews. A typical fast food meal has a very high energy density. It is more than one and a half times higher than an average traditional British meal and two and a half times higher than a traditional African meal. The researchers concluded that a diet high in fast foods will increase a person's risk of weight gain and obesity - even though they may feel that they are eating no more than they would if they ate an average meal. BBC
The world's biggest scientific experiment into the environmental impact of genetically-modified crops, conducted on British farms, has shown that GM rapeseed and sugar beet are more harmful to wildlife than conventionally grown plants. Financial Times
Researchers at the Rodale Institute in Kutztown, Pa., say a long-term study has shown organic farming practices help retain carbon in the soil, improving soil quality and helping to prevent global warming. But two outside researchers, including one from Hawaii, have questioned the institute's findings, saying that conventional farming practices also can achieve "carbon sequestration" and that the numbers cited in the report far exceed those from other published studies. Dow Jones
Participating in regular physical "recreational" activity, even for just a few hours a week, may significantly lower a woman's risk of developing early, localized breast cancer, what doctors call breast carcinoma in situ. Reuters
Diabetes rates are shooting up in the United States, with a 27 percent increase between 1997 and 2002, according to official government statistics. The annual snapshot of the nation's health, put together by the National Center for Health Statistics, also shows that nearly a third of Americans are obese and two-thirds overweight. Reuters
A good night's sleep may help you fight cancer, says a Stanford University Medical Center study. Previous research found that people with cancer who have a strong social support network or who take part in group therapy fare better than people with weaker social support. This new study suggests that a person's sleep/wake cycle may explain how such psychosocial factors can have an impact on cancer. HealthDay
Babies given antibiotics during the first six months of their lives are far more likely to develop asthma, according to a US study. Why is not clear, but the team claims antibiotics might be partly responsible for the steady rise in asthma cases in western countries. NewScientist.com
A non-human molecule found in red meat and milk makes its way into the human system when eaten -- and seems to build up especially in tumors, U.S. researchers reported on Monday. The compound, called sialic acid, is found on the surfaces of animal cells but is not found in people, and may be one reason why animal-to-human organ and tissue transplants do not work well. Animals have a version called Neu5Gc, while humans carry Neu5Ac. But researchers at the University of California San Diego found it does show up in the human body, and showed it can be absorbed from eating red meat and milk. Reuters
Television ads for junk food do encourage children to eat unhealthily, according to a report. While the link has long been suspected, researchers at the University of Strathclyde say they now have evidence that it exists. They analysed over 30,000 pieces of research and found that TV ads are responsible for children eating too much sugar, fat and salt. The Food Standards Agency called for a debate on the merits of TV food ads. BBC
Brain activity linking negative emotions to a lower immune response against disease has been revealed for the first time, claim researchers. Many previous studies have shown that emotions and stress can adversely affect the immune system. But this effect had not been directly correlated with activity in the brain, says study leader Richard Davidson, at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, in the US. The part of the brain the team studied, the prefrontal cortex (PFC), is associated with depression. People who had the greatest activity in the right PFC when asked to dwell on distressing episodes in their life had a markedly lower antibody levels after an influenza vaccination. In contrast, those showing exceptional activity in the left PFC when recalling happy times developed high antibody levels. NewScientist
A study indicates American youngsters walk less than those in other countries. Researchers say this helps explain why a greater proportion of American kids are overweight. And other experts say kids would walk more if parents didn't have to shuttle them around so much. The researchers gave pedometers to 1,954 children, ages 6-12, in the United States, Sweden and Australia. The number of steps shown on the pedometer was compared with the child's body-mass index — an estimate of body fat based on height and weight. "In general, the Swedish children were significantly more active than the Australian and American children, and the American children were significantly heavier than the Australian and Swedish children," the study said. Associated Press
Two sweeping studies released today appear to explode the long-held myth that half of heart attacks result from bad genes or bad luck. The studies, focusing on different populations totaling about half a million people, indicate that about 90% of people with severe heart disease have one or more of four classic risk factors: smoking, diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure. That means the vast majority of the 650,000 new heart attacks each year could be prevented or delayed for decades by quitting smoking, reducing cholesterol and controlling hypertension and diabetes. USA TODAY
A new study offers an additional reason for men to exercise: It could add years to their sex lives. Researchers hope men will learn from this, and exercise to protect their potency even if they haven’t exercised to protect their hearts. Men over 50 who kept physically active had a 30 percent lower risk of impotence than men who were inactive, the study found. MSNBC
A dietary supplement used by many athletes to boost muscle power can also increase brain power, at least in vegetarians. New research shows that non-meat eaters taking the supplement, called creatine, perform better in various memory tests than those taking a placebo. However, it is not yet clear if the benefits would apply to meat-eaters, as they already gain creatine from their diet. It is also uncertain whether the effects persist for as long as people continue taking the supplement, or whether it diminishes after a few months. NewScientist.com
What mothers eat during pregancy could have a fundamental and lifelong effect on the genes of their children, suggests an intriguing new study in mice. Researchers found they could change the coat colour of baby mice by feeding their mothers different levels of four common nutrients during pregnancy. These altered how the pups' cells read their genes. As a result the mice were also less prone to obesity and diabetes than genetically identical mice whose mothers received no supplement. The work establishes the tightest link yet between diet and a strange form of inheritance known as epigenetics. Unlike a mutation which changes the DNA sequence of genes, epigenetic factors can alter how a gene is used, while leaving the DNA sequence unchanged. NewScientist
A study led by researchers at the San Francisco VA Medical Center (SFVAMC) has found that the lower the level of vitamin C in the blood the more likely a person will become infected by Helicobacter pylori, the bacteria that can cause peptic ulcers and stomach cancer. ScienceDaily
A study by the French environmental campaigning group Robin des Bois found that a typical two-hour barbecue can release the same level of dioxins as up to 220,000 cigarettes. BBC
Mild to moderate levels of depression symptoms combined with feelings of hostility in healthy men may raise their levels of a protein that is associated with clogged arteries and a greater risk of heart attack, according to new research in Psychosomatic Medicine. Center for the Advancement of Health
Happy people are three times less likely to get a cold, according to researchers who squirted cold virus up the noses of volunteers. Psychologist Sheldon Cohen and his colleagues at Carnegie Mellon University, Pennsylvania, also found that the positive thinkers who do develop symptoms complain about them less. NewScientist.com
Scientists study it. Doctors recommend it. Millions of Americans—many of whom don't even own crystals—practice it every day. Why? Because meditation works. TIME Magazine
Eating a diet similar to that of our ape ancestors can have as much of an effect on cholesterol levels as modern medicine does, a new study suggests. Results published today in the Journal of the American Medical Association indicate that a strict, low-fat vegetarian diet high in specific plant products can lower levels of bad cholesterol as much as widely prescribed statin drugs can. Scientific American
Victoria's 300 certified organic farmers have long claimed they are 100 per cent organic, but now they have the science to prove it. In the first study of its type in Australia, more than 300 different types of organic fruit and vegetables were tested for pesticide residue by the Victorian Government; with the results coming back 100 per cent clean. ABC News
Young women who eat more red meat and full-fat dairy products such as cheese may be raising their risk of breast cancer, researchers reported on Tuesday. They said their study, published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, provides yet another incentive for women to shun fatty foods and consume fresh fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Reuters
New research found that foods high in fat and sugar can cause significant changes in brain biochemistry similar to drugs such as heroin and cocaine. Researchers believe once people are hooked, many find it impossible to switch back to a healthy diet, often leading to obesity. The evidence is to be taken up by lawyers preparing multi-million dollar claims from people who allege their that addiction to fast foods has damaged their health. Scotsman.com