Archive for July, 2012
Recently researchers found a connection between the major diseases and obesity in our population; it is inflammation. Alzheimer’s, diabetes, heart disease, COPD, arthritis and a host of other ailments that Americans seem to be suffering from with greater numbers than our European counterparts, are chronic inflammation. Obesity and the ever enlargement of the US populations waistlines seems to be at the center of the condition.
Inflammation is often the body’s first response to adversity. Whether bruising from direct impact, or injury from outside irritants like swollen sinus passages caused by inhaled particles like pollen, are inflammation. Chronic inflammation is when the body can no longer regulate how it is dealing with the irritants and maintains a state of swollenness.
Researchers have been looking at the auto immune response of types of cell called cytokines. Cells, local to injury secrete Cytokines in the immune system. They are a type of message that sets up the chain of events that becomes inflammation. Think of them as the warrant that allows the police to search your house or arrest you. Once you are served, action begins.
Collaboration between Boston University, Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard found that fat cells produce cytokines. Before this, fat cells were look at as sedate storage units. Now researchers are finding out that they act, or can instigate behaviors in cells surrounding them. Researches discovered that fat cells, especially those abdominal deposits on both the muscle and organs actually instigate an inflammatory response.
While it was common belief that obesity increases your risk of diseases like heart disease and diabetes, the connection was more centered around the fat content of the food you ingest and its effect on the body. Medical studies now show that fat, causes inflammation, which looks like more fat. The new research reinforces the need to make weight management a goal for everyone.
When it comes to getting a health insurance
Whether you have the opportunity to enroll in a group or individual health insurance plan your body mass is now a predictor of ailments you may develop. If you are 20 or more pounds overweight or BMI (Body mass index) is 25 to 29, take the time to review your diet, make the necessary adjustments to both your food intake, and exercise regime. If you BMI is over 30, then you are obese and should consider seeking the assistance of your doctor to help get your weight under control.
p>In both Europe and the US the law is very clear. A manufacturer cannot make false advertising claims if its products has not completed the correct regulatory approval process. In theory, this means we are not swamped with ads claiming products will give us perfect skin, stop our hair from falling out and make us as slim as some of these models we see in magazines. In practice, the regulators play wack-a-mole. A company springs into life making outrageous claims for Product A with magic ingredient X which forces hair to regrow faster than the grass in your yard. The regulators notice some months later and issue a notice. When it comes to enforcement, the company has dissolved and a new company has rebranded the product with a new miracle ingredient.
A classic example of this is currently being played out in Europe. Nutrilinks is a Swiss company it is has been claiming that some of its products reinforce hair strength and contribute to reducing hair loss. The European Food Safety Authority asked for evidence of this claim, it found the replies unsatisfactory. It is now forcing the company to stop the advertising claims. This is the latest in a long-running saga with new claims continually made for different “new” ingredients.
You should only ever buy a product that has been through the drug testing regimes if you want to protect yourself properly. This involves supervised clinical trials involving thousands of participants. Only when the drugs are found to deliver provable benefits are they allowed on the market. Obviously, this is an expensive process and inconveniently can prove the products are useless. So many manufacturers prefer to game the system and hope to get enough sales relying on false or misleading ads. In reality, propecia has been approved by the FDA and, when you read its marketing copy claiming that it stops hair loss, this carries a government-backed guarantee. Not one of the health, herbal or other products that claim to stop hair loss have any evidence to support their claims. Only Propecia pills which are also sold as Finasteride pills can legally make the claim.
Rheumatoid arthritis is one of the more unpleasant of the non-fatal diseases because it produces a painful condition and there’s no long-term cure. This leads to both physical incapacity and depression. It’s difficult to stay positive when you know there’s no end in sight. This puts pressure on the medical researchers to come up with ways in which the quality of life can be improved. One of the more common difficulties is the stiffness that affects everyone when they wake. There are two factors contributing to this phenomenon. The first is the slow build-up of inflammation overnight. Given that Prednisone is one of the standard treatments to relieve inflammation, the research has focused on how to get the best results. The second is the lack of physical mobility during sleep. Even though it’s often quite painful to move around, the more you exercise, the greater the degree of mobility you will enjoy. The less you move, the more stiff you will become.
The CAPRA-1 trial compared the results of taking an immediate-release Prednisone tablet on waking, and using a modified-release tablet to delay the release of the active chemicals into the bloodstream for four hours. The idea under test was whether matching the deployment of the drug to the circadian rhythms of the body gave a better outcome. This way, if you sleep for about seven hours, the drug will be at maximum effectiveness when you are due to wake.
This was a twelve week, double-blind trial with almost 300 participants and the results confirm the delayed release of Prednisone was convenient and more effective, allowing patients to move with relative freedom immediately they awoke. Although the immediate-release format did allow the joints to begin moving reasonably quickly, there was still that initial period of stiffness to deal with. Since there was no difference in the incidence of side effects between the two formats of tablet, the researchers concluded people who experience morning stiffness would benefit from switching over to the delayed-release format. If in doubt, talk to your regular physician about whether this is likely to help you.