A coalition of medical groups says, Canadian children under 13 shouldn’t be exposed to marketing of unhealthy foods and beverages.
Calls on food companies to immediately stop marketing foods high in fats, added sugars or sodium to children was made on Thursday’s policy statement from the Canadian Medical Association, Heart and Stroke Foundation, Hypertension Canada, College of Family Physicians of Canada and others.
The proposed advertising restriction includes characters or mascots promoting sugary cereals. (Ryan Remiorz/Canadian Press)
Dr. Norm Campbell, a hypertension specialist at the University of Calgary who led the campaign Federal, provincial and territorial governments have said that protecting the health of children is a priority.
“They had this on their radar and yet absolutely nothing is done, and so this is really a call for action that they do what we already know is going to be effective.”
The groups say that in 1989, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled that “advertisers should not be able to capitalize upon children’s credulity” and “advertising directed at young children is per se manipulative.”
Food companies in Canada, except Quebec, are not obliged by law to restrict unhealthy food and beverage marketing to children.
“Up to 80 per cent of food advertising actually advertises unhealthy food and we know that it has a direct impact on the choices that children make,” Beaulieu said.
Canada hasn’t acted
The World Health Organization released recommendations on the marketing of food and beverages to children and called on governments worldwide to reduce the exposure of children to advertising and to reduce the use of powerful marketing techniques employed by the manufacturers of foods and beverages high in saturated fats, trans-fatty acids, free added sugars or sodium last May 2011.
Canada has not acted on the recommendations, the health groups said.
The group’s statement describes the policy goal this way: “Federal government to immediately begin a legislative process to restrict all marketing targeted to children under the age of 13 of foods and beverages high in saturated fats, trans-fatty acids, free sugars or sodium and that in the interim the food industry immediately ceases marketing of such food to children.”
They intend to use WHO’s suggestions on high content of saturated fats, trans-fatty acids, free sugars or sodium.
“Right now, we have a voluntary ban on marketing of unhealthy foods to children from the food industry,” said Campbell. “The industries that have signed on to that are the worst offenders. What they’ve done is made their own definition.”
If the plan passes, the restrictions would apply to TV, internet, radio, magazines, mobile phones, video and adver-games, brand mascots, product placement, cross-promotions, school or event sponsorships and viral marketing.
The Centre for Science in the Public Interest said on Wednesday night, NDP member of Parliament Libby Davies’s bill to phase in lower sodium levels in prepackaged foods and add simple, standardized labels, failed to pass with a vote of 147 to 122
A coalition of medical groups says, Canadian children under 13 shouldn’t be exposed to marketing of unhealthy foods and beverages.
It is now well-established that cancer is well-linked to smoking. And now according to researchers, cigarettes increase the odds for developing colon cancer, especially for women.
According to the new study, published April 30 in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, women who’ve ever smoked have an almost 20 percent increased risk for colon cancer, compared with women who never smoked.
“Women who smoke even 10 or fewer cigarettes a day increase their risks for colon cancer,” said lead researcher Dr. Inger Gram, a professor in the department of community medicine at the University of Tromso in Norway.
“Because colon cancer is such a common disease, even these moderate smoking accounts for many new cases,” she said. “A lot of colon cancer can be prevented if people don’t smoke — especially women.”
More than 600,000 men and women ages 19 to 67 are involved in the study whereas they were surveyed by the Norwegian Institute of Public Health. Participants answered questions concerning their smoking habits, physical activity and other lifestyle factors.
Over 14 years of follow-up nearly 4,000 people developed colon cancer, and the odds were greatest for smokers, women in particular according to Gram’s team. The risk for colon cancer increased 19 percent among women who smoked and 8 percent for men who smoked, they added.
The researchers said, the more years a woman smoked, the earlier she started smoking, and the more packs of cigarettes smoked a year, the greater her risk of developing colon cancer. Women who smoked for 40 years or more increased their risk for colon cancer almost 50 percent, they added.
Gram noted, their risk was especially high for developing proximal, or right-sided, colon cancer, with a type of tumor specifically related to smoking.
Gram said she was surprised the link between smoking and colon cancer was so much greater for women, and said the reasons aren’t clear.
Although this study shows an association between smoking and colon cancer, it does not establish a cause-and-effect relationship. However, the link between smoking and colon cancer is more than a coincidence, Gram pointed out.
“Colon cancer is a smoking-related cancer,” she said. “That has recently been established by the International Agency for Research on Cancer of the World Health Organization.” Based on a review of prior research, the WHO says long-term smoking appears to double the risk of colon cancer. It also increases risk for bladder and pancreatic cancer, according to the agency.
One expert, Dr. Stephanie Bernik, chief of surgical oncology at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City, doesn’t believe the heightened risk for colon cancer among women is solely related to smoking. Alcohol use, diet and lack of exercise may also play a role, Bernik said.
“Usually, smoking goes along with other bad health habits,” Bernik said. “However, this adds to the growing data that cigarette smoking contributes to the increased risk of colon cancer.”
Another expert offered some advice. “If you smoke, you should quit,” said Dan Jacobsen, from the Center for Tobacco Control at North Shore-LIJ Health System in Great Neck, N.Y. “There are a lot of good methods, programs and resources out there if you want to try to quit smoking,” he added.
“Smoking is just toxic to our bodies,” said Jacobsen. “It’s the number one preventable cause of death and disease.”
“Pursue healthy lifestyle parameters to cut the danger of high blood pressure” – springhill medical
One of the most significant risk factors for cardiovascular disease that leads to an estimated 15 percent of all deaths worldwide each year is hypertension or high blood pressure. Micro-cracks in the inner lining of arterial walls are caused by an excessive blood pressure consequently leads to a series of serious health concerns. Patching materials are hurriedly pulled from blood circulation to fix the cracks; this is in a desperate attempt to prevent a potentially deadly hemorrhage. This may save you today and can continue a life for a while but over the course of several decades, plaque volume increases until blood flow is cut off to the heart and brain, or a clot becomes lodged in a narrowed artery. There are a number of important lifestyle factors according to medical researchers. These factors increase the risk for hypertension. They also found out that blood pressure can be returned to normal without the need for pharmaceuticals that are ineffective and wrought with deadly side-effects by modifying these actions.
Healthy behaviors regarding alcohol, physical activity, vegetable intake and body weight reduce the risk of hypertension by two-thirds; this is according to the research team from Finland reporting to the European Society of Cardiology Congress. Prevention of hypertension is essential to improving health and preventing morbidity and mortality, they further noted. Smoking, alcohol consumption, physical activity, obesity and consumption of vegetables are the five major cardiovascular disease-related lifestyle factors the have identified. Their mission was to verify if correcting abnormalities in these aspects could aid forecasting the potential increase of blood pressure and development of clinical hypertension. They developed a large legion study which includes 9,637 men and 11,430 women, aged 25 to 74 who were free of hypertension during baseline measurements. The study was 20 years in the making. The researchers set parameters for healthy lifestyle factors as follows: Not smoking, Alcohol consumption less than 50g per week, Leisure time physical activity at least three times per week, Daily consumption of vegetables, Normal body weight (BMI lower than 25).
The study authors concluded “The risk of hypertension was only one third among those having all four healthy lifestyle factors compared to those having none… four modifiable lifestyle factors: alcohol consumption, physical activity, consumption of vegetables and keeping normal weight have a remarkable effect on the development of hypertension,” after 709 men and 890 women developed hypertension all through a 16-year follow-up period. Men were more pronounced of lifestyle modifications than women, this is according to the study the team had found out. This is maybe because it’s due to increases in alcohol consumption and a tendency toward obesity found within the male group. The majority of health conscious persons breathe within the lifestyle parameters defined as healthy in this study. Up till now it still acts as an important reminder to stay watchful at all stages of life to thwart hypertension and stay disease-free.
Taco Bell was well-known as one of the purveyor of junk food and they wanted to start erasing that from our memory yet they are not ready to give up the chalupa yet. Wednesday, the chain announced that it’s exploring ways to offer more “balanced choices,” marking just the latest sign that the fast-food industry is trying to adapt to shifting tastes and upend the conventional wisdom that it only offers caloric indulgences.
Taco Bell is testing a “range of products” this year, with national launches planned for 2014. He also said existing menu items could also be reformulated but noted that the chain would remain true to its brand, CEO Greg Creed said. “We’re not going to walk away from who Taco Bell is,” Creed stated.
Taco Bell says, by 2020, 20% of its combo meals will meet nutritional guidelines for calories and fat set out by the federal government. People eat three meals a day, as a general thought, that means a single meal would have about a third of the recommended intake of about 2,000 to 2,500 calories. The company has no idea of what portion of meals currently meet those guidelines. Taco Bell is known for urging people to eat nachos as a “fourth meal” late at night, it is a bit of a contrary to the announcement and it gained a lot of skeptics. However it demonstrates just how much difficulty the broader industry is facing to overturn its greasy-food image as people more and more look out for alternatives they believe are healthier.
The lower-calorie options were a key indicator of growth at restaurant chains between 2006 and 2011 from a report by the Hudson Institute earlier this year. The increase in customer traffic rise by 11 per cent by those chains that expanded while those that didn’t saw traffic fall by 15 per cent, according to the public policy research group. As customer “tastes and needs” evolve, Creed said that offering more balanced choices would be critical in helping Taco Bell reach its growth targets over the next decade.
As such, he said product developers have been given “nutrition guardrails” they need to stay within. He declined to provide details on the new menu offerings that are being developed. Taco Bell’s drive to raise the image of its food pave the way for last year’s introduction of a line of “Cantina” burrito bowls that are seen as being more in line with fast-growing rival Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. Taco Bell claims its lower-calorie “fresco” options, which were introduced in 2005 and come without cheese or sour cream, account for only about 2 per cent of sales. “We’ve gone from the whistle-blowing stage to the higher-expectations stage, and some of those expectations are being met,” Mark Bittman, New York Times writer, wrote in the piece, which argued that the public was ready for a healthy fast-food chain.
Those instances don’t stopped fast-food chains to offer more indulgent creations. Taco Bell rolled out hand-held tortilla-wrapped “griller” snacks; one of the varieties comes stuffed with fried potatoes, a nacho cheese sauce, bacon and sour cream, earlier this year.
Boston Bombing Aftermath
Even if you were thousands of miles away we cannot help but to feel a range of emotions the day after the terror bombing attack at the Boston Marathon. Los Angeles psychologist Emanuel Maidenberg, PhD, says that in the wake of all that horror, it’s understandable that emotions are still raw and intense. “People become vigilant, they look around, they become apprehensive,” says Maidenberg, director of the cognitive behavioral therapy clinic at the UCLA’s David Geffen School of Medicine. He added, empathy for those killed or injured, as well as fear for your own safety and anger at the bomber or bombers, are also common and normal at this time. One hundred fifty and more are reported injured aside from the three people confirmed dead than from two bombs that exploded near the finish line of the marathon Monday afternoon.
“A new study has claimed that listening to live music may boost the health of premature babies who are being treated in the neonatal intensive care unit.”
According to the research, when the premature babies in intensive care listened to live music, they showed measurable improvements in heart rate, sucking behavior, sleep patterns and calorie intake. Adding up, MyHealthNewsDaily reported, music helped parents and babies bond, and relieved the stress of parents. The US study at 11 hospitals was composed of 272 premature infants in neonatal intensive care units, or NICUs. The infants had health issues from breathing problems, bacterial bloodstream infections or down to were small for their age. The researchers examined at preemies` reactions to three types of music therapy. One is an instrument involved a Remo ocean disc that produces a soothing “whoosh” sound. Another one is an intervention involved a gato box, which is a drumlike wooden box that is played softly with the fingers.
“According to the researchers, the ocean disc imitates the sound of the in utero environment and in effect it could have a soothing, sleep-enhancing consequence, whereas the gato box would sound akin to a mother`s heartbeat.”
While in the third intervention, parents sang a lullaby to their baby, what researchers call a “song of kin”, that had a cultural, childhood or religious meaning. But they sang the default tune of “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star” if the parents didn`t have a song of kin.For 10 minutes three times a week for two weeks each baby was exposed to each intervention. Results demonstrated that each music intervention had special various health benefits. In some case, preemies whose parents sang to them had the furthermost boost in activity or alertness.
The whooshing sound of the Remo ocean disc was connected with the utmost development in sleep patterns, and the sounds produced by the gato box amplified babies` sucking behavior, that consequently helped with swallowing and breathing. Comparing both babies who listened to song of kin and “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star”, babies who heard a song of kin consumed more calories than babies who listened to “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star.” Conversely, babies who heard “Twinkle, Twinkle” had to some extent higher levels of oxygen in their blood. Parents who sang to their babies reported feeling much less stress.
“The findings mean musical therapies could be tailored to the specific needs of a preemie,” said study researcher Joanne Loewy, director of the Louis Armstrong Center for Music & Medicine at Beth Israel Medical Center in New York. “Live sounds are the key. When a music therapist teaches parents to entrain with the baby`s vital signs, it can have a therapeutic effect,” Loewy said. The sounds researchers utilized during the study varied from 55 to 65 decibels, alike to the volume of a moderate rainfall or a conversation.
“This study provides some helpful information for medical professionals consulting with parents about treatment options for children with SDB that, although it may remit, there are considerable behavioral risks associated with continued SDB,” said Michelle Perfect, PhD, the study’s lead author and assistant professor in the school psychology program in the department of disability and psychoeducational studies at the University of Arizona in Tucson. “School personnel should also consider the possibility that SDB contributes to difficulties with hyperactivity, learning and behavioral and emotional dysregulation in the classroom.”
Sleep apnea is a common form of sleep-disordered breathing (SDB). A recent study found that obstructive sleep apnea is connected with elevated rates of ADHD-like behavioral problems in children plus other adaptive and learning problems. The journal SLEEP will feature the five-year study in their April issue. This study is utilized data from a longitudinal cohort, the Tucson Children’s Assessment of Sleep Apnea Study (TuCASA). The TuCASA study prospectively examined Hispanic and Caucasian children between 6 and 11 years of age to establish the occurrence and commonness of SDB and its outcomes on neurobehavioral functioning. The outcome of the study shows that 23 children had incident sleep apnea that actualized at some point in the study period, and 21 children had persistent sleep apnea the whole time of the entire study. While 41 children who at first had sleep apnea no longer had breathing problems during sleep at the five-year follow-up. The chances of having behavioral problems were four to five times greater in children with incident sleep apnea and six times higher in children who had persistent sleep apnea.
Children with sleep apnea were more likely to have parent-reported problems in the areas of hyperactivity, attention, disruptive behaviors, communication, social competency and self-care compared to youth who never had SDB. Children with persistent sleep apnea moreover were seven times more probably to have parent-reported learning troubles and three times more likely to have school grades of C or lower. Mind you to have knowledge on fraud prevention because scam watch should always occur to you, there are scams present in every case.
Homemade medicines are a lot cheaper, safer and easy access. It was always been a debate whether or not chemical medications are good for the heath or have no side effects on the body especially on children. Over the years, there have been many recalls on several drugs due to inadequate or worse non-existent testing procedures.
This is a major burden to parents when their children become ill. Little did they know that there are other medications cheaper and safer. Here are some tips:
This is something good for children and adults’ alike, homeopathic medicines can be found at most health food store in quick dissolving tablet form.
· Belladonna- 6C: Best and helpful for fevers that come on unexpectedly, and it is also good for clear runny nose. Belladonna is helpful as well in easing headaches and inflamed red sore throats.
· Pulsatilla-6C: When nasal discharge is thicker and children are acting clingy and weepy try using this because this is good for it. What’s more is it is helpful for earaches that are less intense.
· Chamomilla- 6C: For irritability and digestive issues, this homeopathic remedy is very good for those sicknesses. And also this is a great help to ease severe pain associated with teething, earaches and gas pains.
*these following guidelines are your medicine cabinet’s must haves.
Without alcohol and other additives, onion and honey cough medicine is a wonderful homemade alternative. Be certain to use good honey; local, organic, raw honey is the finest as it will help to prevent allergies too. The benefit of both honey and onion is that it reduces bronchial constriction because both have anti-bacterial properties and onions contain a compound that. Any onion color will do, chop it and place in a jar, and cover the onion bits with honey. The next day, discard the onion pieces and save the liquid.
This next tip has been used to promote health for centuries now. Honey and cinnamon, this mixture can aid at the first sign of cold and has proven to boost the immune system whether separately or together. To get rid of the cold, just mix one teaspoon of honey with a teaspoon of cinnamon, your colds will be gone in couple of days.
This may sound a little unrealistic for some but definitely true, the healing power of touch. This healing power can be in the form of hugs, kisses, cuddles or even light placement of the hands on areas where there is pain and discomfort. Many studies can back-up that healing touch can reduce pain, boost the immune system, lower stress levels and promote relaxation and healing.
Aside from being cost effective and easy to prepare, natural cold and flu remedies have higher success rate. Homeopathic medicines act to cure the imbalances that preceding to sickness and can be used to stop the illness altogether. They are better than the commercial. Over the counter medicines simply mask the symptoms, or antibiotics that are shown to lower the immune system and decrease resistance. It is also a good fraud prevention, no will never get scammed. Go for alternative medicines.
“3-D glasses aid doctors carry through invasive surgery when their hands are hidden from view.”
Now 3D glasses are not for moviegoers alone doctors could make some assistance from it as well. This is suggested by new studies. Doctors preferred to rely on their own experiences having doubts and being skeptic about using the 3D technology but this was all in the past. This may now change; it is all because of the new and improved 3D glasses and even glasses-free systems. The study of 50 surgeons using the new technology showed improvements in surgical precision and speed—funded by industry sponsors. “While the technology still requires some fine-tuning, technology without the need to wear special glasses will increase the popularity of 3D systems in operating rooms,” study leader Ulrich Leiner of the Fraunhofer Heinrich Hertz Institute (HHI) in Berlin said in a statement.
Upgrading screens are lashing advancements in 3D technology and now high-definition screens are already available. According to study co-author Michael Witte of HHI, the next step is ultra-high definition, with a sixteenfold improvement in resolution. To test it and evaluate the new 3D technology, researchers invited surgeons from the Klinikum rechts der Isar’s surgical hospital, they will determine if the technology is ready for hospital applications. A leading endoscope manufacturer and an international display company financed the study. The surgeons tried-and-true four different systems: 2D, 3D with glasses, 3D without glasses and a mirror-based 3D system. The glasses-free model relied on an eye-tracking camera system that delivered separate images to each eye, creating a 3D effect in the brain.
The technology works like this, the images came from endoscopic cameras used in surgery. The doctors practiced a replicated, routine surgical procedure in which they sewed up a wound in a model patient’s stomach using a needle and thread. Just as in a minimally invasive surgery, their hands were covered from view and to see what they were doing they depend on the screen. “The results were astonishing,” Hubertus Feußner, of the Klinikum rechts der Isar university hospital in Munich, said in a statement. The winning surgeon performed the procedure in 15 percent less time and with considerably increased precision, Feußner said. According to the researchers, the most surprising thing was that not only young surgeons benefited, but experienced surgeons also. The doctor that had won and performed best has worked at the hospital for more than 30 years and has conducted thousands of operations.
The surgeons who participated in the study rated the 3D glasses system the highest while the glasses-free system as comparable to the 2D one. Once the technology is widely available, will doctors begin using it? “There’s no doubt that 3D will be a commodity in the future,” Witte said. The study’s results will be forwarded and presented at a congress of the Association of German Surgeons in Berlin in April of this year. However, the findings have not been published in a scientific peer-reviewed journal.
Fact: Before the web about 20 years ago, roughly 4,000 people from 200 companies congregated in San Diego for a conference to talk about the future of health-care information technology. This was long before the technology of the WEB begins, when computers in physicians’ offices were used only for scheduling and billing patients and paper charts bulged out of huge filing cabinets.
It was one of HIMSS’s or Information and Management Systems Society’s first big conferences. Several physicians, technologists, visionaries, engineers and entrepreneurs shared one idealistic goal, a goal to use information systems and technology to fundamentally change health care. The intention was not just to improve the old system but a future that looked a lot like we were being promised throughout the economy as it sped into the Internet era. The aim is for the computers enabling improvements in the practice of medicine to make it safer, higher quality, more affordable and more efficient, all in for one same goal, to make the people healthier. A company that was called Allscripts was then built not long after the said conference. Its focus was electronic prescriptions. The old joke about impossible to read doctor’s handwriting was after all no joke, because according to The Institute of Medicine, about 7,000 Americans were dying each year from paper prescription errors. The first fully electronic prescription using Allscripts system was transmitted by an innovative physician named Azar Korbey of New Hampshire. As of today about 600 million prescriptions out of 1.5 billion in the U.S. are written electronically, this is according to industry source SureScripts. This is a considerable development but there is more to do but it is safe to say electronic prescribing is saving lives.
Rivals have a common goal, Allscripts, Cerner and Epic, to make all physician practices and hospitals digital. So the next phase was electronic health records. These competitors found ways to automate a complicated clinical encounter. The goal seems didn’t seem to be unattainable although putting PCs on every desk was only the first step in the information revolution. And it all started when these PCs were then connected to the Internet and developed “apps”, everything changed. Consider Amara’s Law: “We tend to overestimate the effect of a technology in the short run and underestimate the effect in the long run.”
The whole process has been hard, from zero to getting nearly half a million physicians using electronic records, required a tough effort. Rewording Churchill, this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But is it, perhaps, the end of the beginning of the electronic health revolution. There had been many critics and disbelievers trying to knock the value of the investments in the system, pass judgment on the government’s stimulus, and doubted the return on investment. An open letter to president Obama by David Kibbe, a physician and technology advisor to the American Academy of Family Physicians, says that electronic health records are “notoriously expensive” and “difficult to implement.” Disagreeing about subsidies, Kibbe wrote: “Nor is there conclusive evidence that the use of EHRs improves patient care quality.” More people now understand that making digital records work is critical to fixing health care. The annual HIMSS conference held last week in New Orleans is expecting 35,000 people and 1,000 vendors to focus on that task. “The impact of IT on health care over the past decade has so far been modest,” this is concluded by the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology concluded in a recent report. The key words: so far. Investors and the industry would be wise not to underestimate what’s coming. It is nothing short of an explosion in innovation and creativity, facilitated by open systems and connectivity.
The technology can fix itself; this is was what the council has found out. “The ability to integrate electronic health information about a patient and exchange it among clinical providers remains the exception rather than the rule,” this is what the report saying right now and this is exactly what need the change. The job on getting all the physicians on board is still on going, while the CDC reported in December that 73% of physicians now use electronic health records, up from about a third two years ago. This means a great progress yet there are still many physicians using paper.
Next step is to get all the records connected to each other, this means the industry, through HIMSS and the government, through the Office of the National Coordinator, are pushing for interoperability. For the time being, the existing systems that were already installed needs improvement. This is because they are not user-friendly, and this claim is from someone who spent 15 years developing and selling them. With the development of the new iPad and other mobile apps, this will help the industry to do better and it will. Electronic health records today tend to be “information retrieval” tools and we have to vitally change it. Human health will be improved once records are open, connected, and more user-friendly, we can start to add intelligence to the network that will help doctors, nurses, care coordinators and patients all do a better job.
Health care in next to no time will be overflowing with similarly exciting start-ups producing apps that alter everything. We actually see it is starting to happen; ground-breaking companies like dbMotion are linking dissimilar systems across health care organizations. Other innovators, like Humedica recently acquired by OptumHealth, they are learning how to mine data for insights that will help physicians and care coordinators keep track of large panels of patients.
Medical apps that dial into electronic health records at last are starting to be seen everywhere. This will impact cost and quality in very significant ways like an example is a wireless scale can notify a nurse when a congestive heart failure patient gains weight indicating dangerous fluid retention. Or just look how convenient this will be, wearing a device that allows your vital signs to be remotely monitored all the time, rather than at a once-a-year doctor visit. “Technology, properly applied, is indistinguishable from magic.” It is the “applied” part of that dream we are still working on. But I’m confident we’ll get there. A connected system will help patients take responsibility for their health. Strong teams of physicians, nurses and caregivers will use an intelligent network to make their results better and their jobs easier. It does sound like magic. And we are getting closer each year. Just take a walk around HIMSS and you’ll see the future.—Arthur C. Clarke