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In the news...

This section covers current news topics relating to health and research developments. Click on the following links to read articles and listen to voice files. Please note Windows Media files (.wma) can be played on windows media player or i-tunes.

MENTAL ACUITY: Eat more vegetables to stay sharp

Most of us worry that we might lose some of our mental sharpness as we get older. But instead of resorting to crossword puzzles, sudoku challenges and reading the family encyclopedia, we could instead eat lots of vegetables every day.

- The over-65s who eat up to three servings of vegetables a day reduce the decline in their cognitive abilities by up to 40 per cent compared with those who eat almost no vegetables.
- The protective effect didn’t seem to get much better than that, even among those who ate more than four servings of vegetables a day.
The discovery has been made by the Chicago Health and Aging Project (CHAP), which has tracked the health of a group of 3,718 people over a 10-year period.
- Fruit didn’t seem to have the same beneficial effects, even when eaten in high quantities, researchers found.

(Source: Neurology, 2006; 67: 1370-6).

From What Doctors Don’t Tell You.

Bread and the risk of Kidney cancer.

A study of more than 2,300 Italians has shown that high bread consumption significantly raises the risk of renal cell carcinoma, the most common type of kidney cancer.

Pasta and rice may also raise the risk, but eating vegetables could lower it.
The 12-year study examined 767 adults with this kidney cancer and 1534 who did not have the disease. The researchers asked participants to fill out food frequency questionnaires, which gauged the average weekly consumption for 78 different food items.

There was a significant direct association for bread consumption, and to a lesser extent pasta and rice. A decreased risk was associated with consumption of poultry and all vegetables.

The association between grain products and cancer may be due to the high glycemic index of these foods and their association with insulin-like growth factors.

(Source: International Journal of Cancer October 20, 2006)

From Dr. Mercola

Red meat and breast cancer

The New York Times
Published: November 16, 2006

The bad news about red meat emerged from a very large and authoritative study of pre-menopausal nurses by researchers at Harvard University medical institutions, published this week in the Archives of Internal Medicine. The researchers followed more than 90,000 women aged 26-46 for a dozen years to determine if there was a relationship between the amount of red meat they ate and the development of breast cancer…
Read more…

Click for Press Cuttings Food for Life Principal Gareth Edwards is a regular contributor in national press providing comment on nutrition and well being. View some of the cuttings >>>



Drinking ‘raw’ milk could reduce children’s risk of suffering allergy-related conditions such as eczema and hayfever, new research suggests. British academics investigating why farmers’ families suffer fewer allergies than others found that even occasional consumption of raw — unpasteurised — milk had a powerful effect. Read the article >>>

USDA could pour funds into organic research

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) could more than double funding for its organic research program next year, a move that highlights the growing importance of the organic industry. Read more >>>

COX 2 inhibitors and some NSAIDs increase the risk of vascular events

Use of selective COX 2 inhibitors is associated with a 1.4-fold increase in the risk of myocardial infarction, stroke, or vascular death compared with placebo; large doses of diclofenac and ibuprofen are also associated with an increased risk. Read more >>>

Identifying patients' agendas improves consultations

Training doctors to elicit patients' agendas or asking patients to write down what they want from their consultation increases the number of problems identified during the consultation. Both the doctors' education and the agenda form increased the numbers of problems identified and improved patient satisfaction, but they also increased the length of consultations.
Read more >>>

Recent findings about the HIV/AIDS myth >>>

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