Lance Armstrong in interview with Oprah Winfrey
The Healthy Flap: my links for January 4th through January 18th:
- Lance Armstrong’s doping drugs -Lance Armstrong admitted to using performance-enhancing drugs in an interview with Oprah Winfrey that aired Thursday night.Did he use EPO? Testosterone? Cortisone? Human growth hormone? Illegal blood transfusions and other blood doping? Armstrong answered “yes” on all counts.In October, the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency released more than 1,000 pages of evidence in doping allegations against Armstrong and his teammates. He was stripped of his seven Tour de France titles in the scandal. On Thursday, the International Olympic Committee demanded that he give back the bronze medal he won in 2000.
- Kids’ dental care at risk -California’s Medi-Cal program will soon be responsible for the dental care of half the state’s children. But advocates say the program is not prepared for the big increase in demand that will come with the closure of the Healthy Families insurance program and the implementation of the federal Affordable Care Act. This report from the Children’s Partnership explains the problem and offers some recommendations for ensuring that kids get the care they need.
- Cheesecake Factory pasta on list of caloric “food porn” -A Cheesecake Factory pasta dish with more than 3,000 calories – or more than a day and a half of the recommended caloric intake for an average adult – is among the headliners on this year’s Xtreme Eating list of the most unhealthy dishes at U.S. chain restaurants.The Center for Science in the Public Interest, a consumer-focused nonprofit group that promotes healthier eating, compiles an annual list of “food porn” to alert consumers to menu items with eye-popping levels of calories, saturated fat, sugar and/or sodium.
- Poll: Few people know obesity can cause more harm to health than just heart disease, diabetes -Heart disease and diabetes get all the attention, but what about the many other ways obesity can damage your health?Carrying too many pounds may lead to or worsen some types of cancer, arthritis, sleep apnea, even infertility. But a new poll suggests few Americans realize the links.Only about one-quarter of people think it’s possible for someone to be very overweight and still healthy, according to the poll by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research.Ask about the most serious consequences, and more than 7 in 10 Americans can correctly tick off heart disease and diabetes. Heart disease is the nation’s leading killer, and diabetes and obesity are twin epidemics, as rates of both have climbed in recent years.
- Eat, drink and pump it out: new weight loss gadget sucks food straight out of the stomach -Who would have thought that the future of weight loss might lie in the hands of the inventor of the Segway? Dean Kamen, creator of the two-wheeled wonder, along with a team from Aspire Bariatrics, of Philadelphia, has applied for a patent for a pump that can suck food and drink straight out of the stomach.Users are able to stuff their face before draining their stomach by connecting the pump to a valve surgically installed in their abdominal wall. The makers hope to use it to treat the morbidly obese, and to provide an alternative to a gastric bypass.
- Early flu season accelerates; no peak yet, CDC says -The nation’s early flu season continued to grow in the U.S. this week, with no sign yet of a peak in the spread of coughing, achy, feverish illness, health officials said Friday.”I think we’re still accelerating,” said Tom Skinner, a CDC spokesman.Twenty-nine states and New York City reported high levels of flu activity, up from 16 states and NYC the previous week. Flu was widespread in 41 states, up from 31 states, according to the latest figures from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
These are my links for November 3rd from 15:40 to 15:45:
- Thousands of lives could be saved if rest of UK adopted average diet in England, study concludes-“Around 4,000 deaths could be prevented every year if the UK population adopted the average diet eaten in England, concludes research published in BMJ Open.”
Death rates for cardiovascular disease and cancer are higher in Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland than they are in England, and it is well known that these diseases are associated with a poor diet that is high in saturated fats and salt and low in fibre, fruits and vegetables.
The researchers therefore looked at mortality data for coronary heart disease, stroke, and 10 cancers associated with diet, including those of the gullet, bowel, and stomach, in all four UK countries for the years 2007 to 2009 inclusive.
And they estimated average intake of 10 dietary components, including energy intake, in each of the four countries, drawn from national representative data from the Family Food Survey for the same period.
These data showed that people in Scotland and Northern Ireland consistently ate more saturated fat and salt and fewer fruits and vegetables every day than their English cousins, while the differences between Wales and England were less consistent over the three years.
The authors then calculated what differences in death rates could be expected from population changes in average dietary quality, using the DIETRON model — a conceptual mathematical model that calculates the impact of food consumption on health outcomes.
- Pete Rose Sued By Dentist — He Charlie Hustled Me!!-“Baseball won’t have him back … and now, Pete Rose’s dentist is pissed at him too … claiming the MLB legend has refused to pay for almost $3k in dental services.
Dr. Armen Terteryan is drillin’ Rose for $2,915.00 for “dental services rendered and not paid for” back in 2010.
According to the lawsuit, filed in small claims court in L.A., the doc claims Rose agreed to the fees before “starting treatment” … though it’s unclear which procedures were performed on the baseball star.
A small claims showdown has been scheduled for December 14th.”
- Overweight Teens Don’t Seem to Grasp Weight Loss Rules –-“Obese teens who want to lose weight may not be going about it in the most healthy or effective ways, according to new research.
Simply put, the researchers said, teens trying to drop the pounds don’t seem to fully understand the link between exercise and calories. The analysis of nearly 44,000 adolescents who participated in the Philadelphia Youth Risk Behavioral Survey showed that, among the obese, girls who exercised still drank soda and boys didn’t exercise at all.
In addition, three-quarters of the obese teens said they were trying to lose weight, but these were also the teens more likely to smoke, possibly as a weight loss aid, the study suggested.
U.S. childhood obesity rates have tripled over the past three decades, and nearly one in three children in America is overweight or obese today. The new study, slated for presentation at the American Public Health Association’s annual meeting in Washington, D.C., sheds some light on why reducing these rates is such an uphill battle.”
- NYU team gets $2.2M grant to ID caries-causing bacteria-“A New York University (NYU) dental research team has received a four-year, $2.2 million grant from the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research to use whole genome sequencing to identify the strains of lactobacilli bacteria that contribute to the development of severe early childhood caries.
Severe early childhood caries can destroy most of a child’s teeth by age 3 and disproportionately affects underserved populations, including American Indians and Alaskan natives, NYU stated in a press release. Although the link between lactobacilli bacteria and severe early childhood caries has been known for almost a century, progress in delineating which of 140 species of this bacteria are responsible for the disease has remained elusive.
The study’s principal investigators, Page Caufield, DDS, PhD, aprofessor of cariology and comprehensive care, and Yihong Li, DDS, a professor of basic science and craniofacial biology, will analyze several hundred bacteria samples from children with severe early childhood caries and their parents, and from caries-free children and their parents. Sampling and collection will take place at Bellevue Hospital Center in New York City.”
These are Flap’s Health Headlines for October 26th.
- From 234 pounds to the Miss America pageant –“Every Friday, Bree Boyce dreaded her high school gym class. Students had to run a mile under 11 minutes, and those who couldn’t finish in time would have to walk around the track for the rest of the period.
Weighing 234 pounds, Boyce never made it in time.
“There were a few times I tried to run because I was so embarrassed and afraid of what other kids might say. After many failed attempts, I gave up hope,” said Boyce.
Every day, Boyce wore a baggy T-shirt and a pair of faded, size 18 jeans to school. She ducked and dodged anytime someone tried to take her picture. She deflected attention from her weight by cracking jokes.
Five years later and 112 pounds lighter, Boyce is no longer the camera-shy girl hiding inside saggy, shapeless tees.
She struts onstage in body-hugging evening gowns and swimsuits. She embraces the spotlight as the reigning Miss South Carolina. And she has been a guest co-host on “The View,” chatting openly about her weight.”
- China arrests 18 in illegal transplant crackdown-“Police in eastern China have arrested 18 people after a raid on two clinics offering illegal organ transplants, state news agency Xinhua reported on Wednesday.
The clinics in Jinan, Shandong’s provincial capital, were raided on Sunday as doctors were preparing a kidney transplant, Xinhua cited local police as saying.
“Police were tipped off earlier this month, and then launched a probe with the city’s health bureau against the two clinics. They found that vehicles and people regularly shuttled between the two clinics, which were not far away from each other,” the report said.
China in 2007 banned organ transplants from living donors, except spouses, blood relatives and step or adopted family members, but launched a national system to coordinate donations after death in 2009. The organ shortage has driven a trade in illegal organ trafficking in the country.
“Reports about illegal transplants indicate there appears to be a large underground network profiting from the country’s demand for donor organs,” Xinhua added.
Police this month arrested three doctors for “illegally harvesting human organs” in northern Hebei province, it said. The doctors were all from Shandong.
Nearly 1.5 million people in China need organ transplants each year, but only 10,000 can get one, according to the Health Ministry.”
- High fizzy soft drink consumption linked to violence among teens-“Teens who drink more than five cans of non-diet, fizzy soft drinks every week are significantly more likely to behave aggressively, suggests research published online in Injury Prevention. This includes carrying a weapon and perpetrating violence against peers and siblings.”
US lawyers have successfully argued in the past that a defendant accused of murder had diminished capacity as a result of switching to a junk food diet, a legal precedent that subsequently became known as the “Twinkie Defense” — a twinkie being a packaged snack cake with a creamy filling.
Responses were assessed in the light of factors likely to influence the results, including age and gender, alcohol consumption, and average amount of sleep on a school night.
Those who drank 5 or more cans of soft drinks every week were significantly more likely to have drunk alcohol and smoked at least once in the previous month.
But even after controlling for these and other factors, heavy use of carbonated non-diet soft drinks was significantly associated with carrying a gun or knife, and violence towards peers, family members and partners.
When the findings were divided into four categories of consumption, the results showed a clear dose-response relationship across all four measures.
Just over 23% of those drinking one or no cans of soft drink a week carried a gun/knife, rising to just under 43% among those drinking 14 or more cans. The proportions of those perpetrating violence towards a partner rose from 15% in those drinking one or no cans a week to just short of 27% among those drinking 14 or more.
Similarly, violence towards peers rose from 35% to more than 58%, while violence towards siblings rose from 25.4% to over 43%.
In all, for those teens who were heavy consumers of non-diet carbonated soft drinks, the probability of aggressive behaviour was 9 to 15 percentage points higher — the same magnitude as the impact of alcohol or tobacco — the findings showed. “There may be a direct cause-and-effect-relationship, perhaps due to the sugar or caffeine content of soft drinks, or there may be other factors, unaccounted for in our analyses, that cause both high soft drink consumption and aggression,” conclude the authors.
- U.K. dentist alleges ‘porcelain pornography’-“Patients who come in for cosmetic work are often seeking the perfect smile. But some dentists are compromising sound enamel and dentin to give patients unnecessary porcelain crowns and veneers, according to Martin Kelleher, BDS, MSc, a consultant in restorative dentistry at the King’s College London Dental Institute.
In an editorial published this summer in Faculty Dental Journal (July 2011, Vol. 2:3, pp. 134-141), Dr. Kelleher discussed the dangers of aggressive, expensive, and at times unnecessary treatment of minor cosmetic problems with brittle porcelain.
In fact, Dr. Kelleher has coined a new term for this phenomenon: “porcelain pornography.”
It is increasingly common to see patients who have received restorative treatment that was probably of more benefit to the profits of the dentists than to the patients’ long-term dental health, he stated in the editorial.
“In my view, many of these unfortunate patients are being robbed twice — first of their money and again of their (even more precious) sound tooth structure,” he wrote. “I call this ‘double mugging.’ ”
According to Dr. Kelleher, the overuse of porcelain crowns and veneers originated in the U.S. to produce the “very even, very white look” Hollywood look, and various factors may have contributed to the growth of this trend.
Some possible reasons could be patient demand from a largely superficial and image-obsessed society, Dr. Kelleher told DrBicuspid.com. “Payment systems, a fix-it culture, money, or speed could also be factors in some specific circumstances,” he said.”
These are my links for October 23rd from 22:36 to 22:47:
- Dentists, patients feel economy’s bite in Sacramento area –
Douglas Lott sees it in the faces of many young people sitting in his Sacramento dentist's chair.
"I have more people unable to pay for treatment," Lott said. "The hardest hit are the younger kids, who … don't have a steady job, or insurance, or are in college. When you tell them they need a root canal or crown for $2,500, they have a look on their face like it's not real."
But Sacramento's double-digit jobless rate and bleak economic conditions are all too real, and they're affecting dentists along with their patients. Like many small businesses, Sacramento area dental practices are getting drilled by the economy, state budget cuts and insurance plan changes.
Dentists in the Sacramento region are reporting that business dropped by as much as 25 to 30 percent in the last three years, said Cathy Levering, executive director of Sacramento District Dental Society. That number is about even with the statewide figures for decreased dental business, she said.
Dentists are also struggling with lost retirement funds in the stock market, which is delaying retirement and making it tough for younger dentists to move into practices. Meanwhile, cuts to Denti-Cal, the lack of free dental clinics and decreasing insurance coverage over the last decade are chipping away at dentists' profits.
Because of state budget shortfalls, the state's Denti-Cal program eliminated adults from its program in 2009, making only children and pregnant women eligible for subsidized dental care and further reducing patient loads.
- Young vegetarians: Getting the nutrition they need –
Niki Gianni was 11 or 12 when she found a video on YouTube called "Meet Your Meat." Saddened and disgusted by the footage from a slaughterhouse, the Chicago girl announced she was no longer going to eat meat. Her parents were less than thrilled.
"When she first said she wanted to be a vegetarian, we were just looking at each other and we said, 'We can't be switching meals for you. You are not going to get your protein.' We were not educated in the health benefits," said Gianni's mother, Julie Gianni.
While many parents worry whether their vegetarian or vegan children will receive adequate nutrition for their growing bodies, the American Dietetic Association says such diets, as long as they are well-planned, are appropriate for all phases of life, including childhood and adolescence. "Appropriately planned" vegetarian or vegan diets are healthful, nutritionally adequate and may provide health benefits in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases, the dietetic association says.
- Healthy Halloween Advice for Children With Diabetes –
While there are challenges, Halloween can still be fun for children with diabetes, an expert says.
"They can enjoy Halloween and enjoy some of the sweets the holiday offers — within reason," Dr. Kenneth McCormick, a pediatric endocrinologist and senior scientist at the University of Alabama at Birmingham Comprehensive Diabetes Center, said in a university news release.
"We give parents and kids three options and let them decide how they want to handle Halloween and the sweets that come with it," he explained.
The first option is to count carbohydrates. A child tracks how many carbohydrates he or she consumes and takes, for example, one unit of insulin for every 15 to 20 grams of carbs.
These are my links for June 27th through October 23rd:
- Oral Bacteria May Signal Pneumonia Risk-Oral bacteria may signal which patients are likely to develop healthcare-associated pneumonia, a researcher said here.
In a small study, there was a sharp divergence between the composition of oral bacteria of ventilated intensive care patients who developed healthcare-associated pneumonia and those who did not, according to Samit Joshi, DO, of Yale University in New Haven, Conn.
The shift occurred in the days before the patients developed the infection and was characterized by a decline in some forms of bacteria and increases in others, Joshi told reporters at the annual meeting of the Infectious Diseases Society of America.
The finding has “implications for how we prevent pneumonia in the future,” Joshi said, and may also hold the seeds of new approaches to treatment if it turns out that bacterial changes actually cause the healthcare-associated pneumonia.
But he cautioned that the genetic method used in the study — a technique called 16S rRNA gene pyrosequencing — can’t currently be employed at the bedside, so that clinical applications of the findings will not be immediate.
It had long been known that the bacteria of the mouth play a role in dental caries and other dental diseases, Joshi said, but recently there has been a suggestion that they may also play a role in healthcare-associated pneumonia.
- Botox, dermal fillers can enhance implant outcomes-When placing dental implants, practitioners should consider using Botox and dermal filler agents for patients who need facial volume restorations, according to a presentation at the American Academy of Implant Dentistry (AAID) annual meeting in Las Vegas, October 19-22.
“Besides creating beautiful smiles, we like to create harmony between the dentofacial complex by addressing the deep lines and wrinkles in the face that can prevent our patients from looking their best,” said Pankaj Singh, DDS, in an AAID press release.
For older dental implant patients with facial aging, the corners the mouth begin to turn down and wrinkles appear around the lips. Botox can relax affected muscles to raise mouth corners and smooth wrinkles to ensure successful and satisfying outcomes, according to Dr. Singh.
In addition, dermal filler agents treat fat and collagen volume that causes static lines to develop. “As we age, our body’s production of hyaluronic acid, the body’s natural filler, decreases, which causes facial lines to appear,” Dr. Singh said.
It takes about two weeks for dermal filler agents to show results, he added, and some patients experience side effects, such as localized pain, infection, bleeding, swelling, redness, bruising, and tenderness in and near the injection site. In addition, results are not permanent, and injections will need to be repeated periodically to maintain the cosmetic improvement.