No. 4 • May • 2009
Studies suggest drinking coffee or tea may reduce the risk of stroke
The Swine Flu: SERVING PALM BEACH COUNTY AND SURROUNDING AREAS
Learn How to Protect Yourself and Your Family
Also in this issue
How to Recognize the Signs of Hearing Loss ...................3
Exercise Reduces Migraine Suffering, Study Finds .........4 The Swine Flu: Learn how to protect yourself and your family ...........................5
Cambridge who’s who names Dr. Jeffrey Bishop executive of the year ...........7
H1N1 (referred to as “swine flu” early on) is a new influenza virus causing illness in people. This new virus was first detected in people in April 2009 in the United States. Other countries, including Mexico and Canada, have reported people sick with this new virus. This virus is spreading from person-toperson, probably in much the same way that regular seasonal influenza viruses spread. PAGE 5
A Night at the Oscars
Dr. Daré Amos brings a world of expertise to South Florida .......................9
Study: lots of meat red increases mortality risk......10
Lower rate of liver disease in african-americans may be explained by difference in fat storage..........................11
What people think about emergin food technology ...12 At Nigth at the Oscars: Stars shone at the Palms West Chamber of Commerce 26th Annual Installation Gala ....13
The Sunnier ride of breakfast............................14 Pet adoption: a lifetime commitment .......15
P.O. Box 542527 Lake Worth, FL 33454-2527
Stars shone at the Palms West Chamber of Commerce 26th Annual Installation Gala
Cambridge Who’s Who Names Dr. Jeffrey M. Bishop Executive of the Year
Presorted Standard US Postage PAID West Palm Beach, FL Permit No. 1340
2 MAY • 2009
Are you prepared for a swine flu? ost of us have been paying attention to news reports of the swine flu, with the recent rise of the swine flu epidemic also labeled as "H1N1". We’re all concerned about the news headlines. Unfortunately the news and information provided can get a little confusing of where to find out the latest news on where the swine flu has been spreading to and the containment efforts the medical community has taken. But the best way to protect yourself and your family’s health isn’t to panic—it’s to get prepared. What you can do to stay healthy: Stay informed. watch your local channel news about updates. If you have access to a computer, go to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's web page at www.cdc.gov/swineflu for basic information on symptoms and updates or other media outlets for breaking news. Influenza is thought to spread mainly person-to-person through coughing or sneezing of infected people. Take everyday actions to stay healthy. Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it. Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze. Alcohol-based hand cleaners are also effective. Stay home if you get sick. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention commends that you stay home from work or school and limit contact with others to keep from infecting them.
Follow public health advice regarding school closures, avoiding crowds and other social distancing measures. Develop a family emergency plan as a precaution. This should include storing a supply of food, medicines, facemasks, alcohol- based hand rubs and other essential supplies. Luckily, there’s a lot you can do right now to prepare in case the worst happens in your area. If the illness becomes widespread, you should limit your exposure to it by staying close to home. That means stocking up on food, water, and other necessary supplies. Much of that is fundamental — the kind of common sense most of us would use with colds or familiar strains of flu. That would include exercising personal responsibility and staying home and away from others if you are sick. That also would mean seeing a doctor and following his or her advice, which likely would include antiviral medicines that officials say are effective and plentiful so far. Palm Beach County public health and public schools officials should be informed and ready — even if that means watching and waiting. We’ll continue to provide updated information as the swine flu situation develops. We hope you’ll take the preparedness recommendations to keep yourself and your family safe and healthy. For now, it's important to stay focused on remaining calm and taking common-sense precautions.
A physician’s story
ow often have we heard kindergartens during circle time say “I want to be a doctor when I grow up”. Well, the feeling often carries through to high school and beyond… and never waivers throughout the school years. Yes, a doctor’s life starts during those early years. The thought process and work ethics are embedded during the early schools years. Being a physician takes a tremendous amount of sacrifice till graduation day and beyond. Excelling in science and math is a must since these are the subjets that assist an individual to obtain the desired scores on standardized medical examinations and finally get admission into the desired universities. Once you have stepped into the threshold of a medical school the daily grind of studying and working begins 7 days of a week… 365 days of the year. A physician has to think and sleep medicine. The examinations are tough and stringent and just passing is not enough… excelling is part of the process. Focus, sacrifice and hard work are part of the game. The responsilibites entrusted to a medical student are of a very high caliber and it takes a lot out of an individual to meet these responsibilites. After about four years of undergraduate school and four years of medical school one has to enter the residency program which is very competitive, and stressful and can often last from 3 to 8 years. During residency, a physician is on call working every minute of the day and night with very little sleep. This tests an individuals mind and body to the limit. Medical residents today, have a different call schedule
than their counterparts in the seventies and eighties who had to encumber a 24-hour call every third day of the week. After 3 years of residency and 2-5 years of a speciality the grind goes on… The tough board examinations follow soon. At this juncture the physician feel that he/she has at last settled down to reap the benefits of studying and working hard. Often this is not the scenario at all. Physicians that think of starting their own practice feels like they are going back to school once again. Raising a family, building a practice and being on call in the emergency room at 3-5 hospitals become the norm. Besides all this, the physician is at the beck and call of patients and their families. It is a myth that doctors are at the golf course, relaxing and making tons of money. Yes, they do play golf and relax and they do make a comfortable living and steady money but remember, all this is the result of their education and knowledge… and yes, knowledge pays!! A physician’s day begins at 7:00 am with either rounds at the hospitals or surgeries to perform depending on the speciality. Then it is to the office to see patients. Physicians often worry about their large overheads - bills from medical schools, the mortgage / rent of the office and medical equipment, the increased cost of medical supplies, payroll for employees. The costs keep rising while the reimbursement for physicians are cut every year. Often patients are reluctant to pay believing that the physician does not ‘need’ the money. This is a false perception that patients have. They fail to realize the
ADVERTISING SALES Sergio Aguilar Phone: (561) 716-5054 firstname.lastname@example.org PUBLIC RELATIONS Ranjita Shar ma Phone: (561) 267-5232 CONTACT US P.O. Box 542527 Lake Worth, FL 33454-2527 Phone: 561-716-5054 email@example.com WEB SITE www.floridahealthnews-online.com CONTRIBUTING ARTICLES U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Contexto Latino, ARA Content, Hispanic PR Wire, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, METRO Editorial Services, Family Features, Florida Health News is a newspaper published every month in Broward, Palm Beach, and surrounding areas. Copyright 2009, all rights reserved by SEA Publications, Inc. Contents may not be reproduced in any form without the written consent of the publisher. The publisher reserves the right to refuse advertising. The publisher accepts not responsibility for advertisement error beyond the cost of the portion of the advertisement occupied by the error within the advertisement itself. The publisher accepts no resposibility for submitted materials. All submitted materials are subject to editing. © SEA PUBLICATIONS, INC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.
By Evelyn Edwards
large overhead that looms around physicians. While seeing patients, physicians receive calls from hospitals (often physicians and nurses need current status on a patient). Sometimes a patient also needs to speak to the physician urgently. This involves time and the physician can be late to see the patients in the examination rooms. Most patients are understanding but there are a few that are belligerent when they have to wait. A patient coming in for one problem may have other issues at the time of the visit that have to be dealt with and often adds to the wait time of patients already in the office. Can physicians charge the insurance company or the patient for their time and emotional stress to save a life? Phone calls to physicians during the day or night are not reimbursed. Can you imagine any other profession such as attorneys, electricians, plumbers, consulting for free? Physicians get a lot of flack from abusive patients who are not grateful and expect the physicians to work magic on them even if they are non compliant. Needless to say physicians work under the “sword of Damocles” with a dark cloud looming around their head due to the frivolous law suits brought forth by patients and attorneys wanting to make quick money from the insurance companies. Yes, we agree that medical mistakes are made but they are few and far between and these definitely warrant legal action. No physician wakes up in the morning with the thought of hurting a patient. Many a time physicians have to leave their families at night and go to the
ER for an emergency. These visits sometimes may or may not get paid by the insurance companies or the patients. Other professions that service clients often charge the moment they leave their home. Physicians get paid at the same rate at night as they would in the daytime. An emergency call at midnight does not mean higher reimbursement. In a way physicians have been abused by the system where they are expected to drop everything be it in the evening or past midnight. At home, a physician’s spouse has to be understanding and not add to their stress. Spouses often find themselves in a supportive and understanding role due to immense pressure undergone by a physician. The comments regarding physicians living in huge homes and driving fancy cars abound. Yes, they deserve every bit of this luxury for what they have to encounter on a daily basis. Physicians carry their stress home with them and their families are not free of this. Even children have to quieten down when calls come through to the home and adjust to the demands of a physician parent or parents. Individuals who choose to be physicians have to display utmost commitment, dedication, a high standard of ethics and love for the profession despite all the drawbacks. After all when physicians take the Hippocratic oath it is to “do no harm” and practice medicine in an ethical manner. Let us all remember that whithout physicians hospitals and nursing homes will be buildings with walls, and without physicians insurance companies will cease to exist and as people our health will definitely be in jeopardy.
MAY â€˘ 2009
How to Recognize the Signs of Hearing Loss
more options than ever for treating hearing loss and protecting your hearing in the future.
If you couldn't hear well, would you wait five to nine years or longer to address the problem? Many people do just that. The average age of first-time hearing aid users is 67, yet the Better Hearing Institute reports that nearly half of all people with hearing loss are younger than 55. Why the delay in seeking help?
Many people with hearing difficulties aren't even aware they have a problem," says Dr. Barry Freeman, an audiologist at Starkey, a global hearing technology company. "Because the change happens over time, treatment may be delayed until the problem is fairly significant. By getting your hearing checked early and regularly, you should be able to treat the problem and find a solution that allows you to enjoy all the sounds of life that you love."
Freeman says the first step in treating hearing loss is to recognize its most common signs. If you or a loved one experiences the following, it might be time to contact a hearing care professional: * Turning up the volume of the TV or radio. * Problems hearing the doorbell or the telephone ringing.
* Difficulty hearing people calling and talking from behind you or in another room.
* Asking people to repeat themselves or saying "what?" frequently.
The Right Solution
Every person has individual hearing needs and should work with a hearing care professional to find the best solution to your hearing problem. A professional can assess your hearing loss and fit you with the best hearing aid for your lifestyle. That means assessing both the style of the hearing aid as well as the technology level, since there are a number of options for both.
* Often cupping hands behind the ears.
A Noisy World
Modern society has created a noisy world. From traffic to lawn equipment to kitchen appliances, a number of different things we hear every day expose our ears to damaging levels of noise. By age 20, we've lost the ability to perceive some of the sounds infants can hear. By the time we reach 30 or 40, subtle but significant losses have begun to occur. Once we reach our 80s, more than half of us suffer from significant hearing loss.
If you have a hearing problem, you aren't alone -- more than 31 million Americans suffer from hearing loss according to the
Exercising Body and Brain
Regular exercise can help prevent or delay type 2 diabetes, heart disease, some cancers and help relieve arthritis pain, anxiety and depression. Mental activity is just as important as physical activity.
Healthy eating can help prevent and control many diseases, such as high blood pressure, heart disease and diabetes, and improve your energy level.
The good news is modern hearing devices are nothing like the hearing aids of your parents' generation. Today's instruments are sleek, sophisticated pieces of equipment scientifically engineered to deliver clear sound without constant manual adjustment or annoying feedback -- the whistling often associated with hearing aids.
* Misunderstanding or "forgetting" what has been said.
Live Longer and Love Every Minute
oday, Americans are living longer than ever before, enjoying more time for travel, family and hobbies. For today's seniors and baby boomers looking to stay healthy and independent for years to come, practicing easy, proven healthy-living strategies can make a difference in their health and wallets.
Staying mentally active may also lower the chances of developing Alzheimer's disease and help offset normal age-related decline in thinking skills.
By getting a regular physical exam, a physician can catch health problems early on, treating them with efficiency and accuracy to maintain overall health. Healthier people spend less money on health care. At age 50 it's important to start annual exams for colorectal cancer, and men should have a prostate exam. Screenings for osteoporosis should start at age 60 for women who are underweight.
More tips on healthy aging can be found in the "American Medical Association Complete Guide to Prevention and Wellness."
Also available to help you to get healthier is AMA's Healthier Life Steps Program with tools and resources to get started on lifestyle improvements. Information and tools can be found at www.ama-assn.org/go/healthierlifesteps.
Better Hearing Institute. Unfortunately, 80 percent of them do not seek help. Take the first step for you or your family member and visit a hearing care professional in your area for a hearing evaluation. You can find a professional near you at starkey.com. Your problem may be as simple as excessive earwax buildup or related to other medical causes. If you are diagnosed with a hearing impairment, you'll find that there are now
For example, Starkey researches and develops hearing aids that are both nearly invisible and effective. These devices offer Active Feedback Intercept, a technology that eliminates feedback. Additionally, Directional Speech Detector helps you hear and understand speech better, even in noisy areas. Hearing is an incredibly important part of communication and quality of life. If you or a loved one is having trouble hearing, depression and frustration can occur. It's important to get help today so you can hear well and enjoy your life. Visit www.starkey.com to take a simple, quick online hearing evaluation and to locate a hearing professional near you who can help you find the best hearing solution for you.
America's Retirees Working to Protect Health Care Benefits They Earned
etirees and baby boomers throughout the nation are wondering with great trepidation, what would happen to them if their health care coverage were simply taken away?
Many fear that the current economic crisis in America will speed up that process. It has already occurred with retirees of some of America's largest corporations, and municipalities are threatening to follow suit. According to Paul Miller, executive director of the national retiree advocacy group, ProtectSeniors.Org, the situation is as dire as the bailout was for the auto industry, Wall Street and America's major banks. "There are currently an estimated 18.5 million American retirees and baby boomers in the United States with health benefits being significantly threatened," Miller says. "If cancelled by the corporations they once worked for, most would be dumped into the federal and state healthcare systems. In effect, this means their former employers would be get-
ting an additional back door federal bailout at the expense of the taxpayer." The health care coverage Miller is referring to is earned retiree benefits that tens of millions of Americans earned and paid for during their working years. He says that for whatever reason, many corporations never socked that money aside and are using the current financial turmoil to threaten the cancellation and further reduction of these benefits.
Much of his organization's hope is placed on a bipartisan legislative proposal- titled the Emergency Retiree Health Benefits Protection Act in the 110th Congress -- which gained the support of 88 bipartisan co-sponsors. The bill would prohibit employers from making post-retirement cancellations or reductions of health benefits that retirees had earned. To find out more about ProtectSeniors.Org advocacy call (202) 434-8193 or visit www.ProtectSeniors.Org.
4 MAY • 2009
Pot-related questions deluge W.H.
By John Ward Anderson
Exercise Reduces Migraine Suffering, Study Finds
By Sean Wagner
hile physical exercise has been shown to trigger migraine headaches among sufferers, a new study describes an exercise program that is well tolerated by patients. The findings show that the program decreased the frequency of headaches and improved quality of life. The study is published in Headache: The Journal of Head and Face Pain.
The study used a sample of migraine sufferers who were examined before, during and after an aerobic exercise intervention. The program was based on indoor cycling (for continuous aerobic exercise) and was designed to improve maximal oxygen uptake without worsening the patients' migraines.
After the treatment period, patients' maximum oxygen uptake increased significantly. There was no worsening of migraine status
at any time during the study period and, during the last month of treatment, there was a significant decrease in the number of migraine attacks, the number of days with migraine per month, headache intensity and amount of headache medication used.
Individuals with headache and migraine typically are less physically active than those without headache. Patients with migraine often avoid exercise, resulting in less aerobic endurance and flexibility. Therefore, well designed studies of exercise in patients with migraine are imperative.
"While the optimal amount of exercise for patients with migraine remains unknown, our evaluated program can now be tested further and compared to pharmacological and non-pharmacological treatments to see if exercise can prevent migraine," says Dr. Emma Varkey, co-author of the study.
hen the White House put out a call for town hall questions, it might not have been expecting this. The more than 92,000 people who responded either have Cheech and Chong senses of humor or there is a deep concern in America — undetected by the media — about the decriminalization of marijuana, its possible use for medicinal purposes and its potential as a new source of tax revenue. Given the opportunity to say what’s really on their minds without going through the filter of the mainstream media, people “buzzed up” a series of questions that seemed to suggest broad interest in legalizing marijuana and taxing it. In this moment of national economic crisis, the top four questions under the heading of “Financial security” concerned marijuana; on the budget, people voted up questions about marijuana to positions 1-4; marijuana was in the first and third positions under “jobs”; people boosted a plug for legalizing marijuana to No. 2 under “health care reform.” And questions about decriminalizing pot occupied spots 1 and 2 under “green jobs and energy.” After taking questions lower on the list, Obama addressed the pot issue head on, noting the huge number of questions about marijuana legalization and remarking with a chuckle, “I don't know what that says about the online audience." "The answer is no, I don't think that is a good strategy to grow our economy," he said, as the audience in the room applauded and joined him in a laugh. It seems part of the popularity of marijuana questions was fueled by NORML, the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, which was urging its members to vote for questions supporting the legalization of cannabis.
US President Barack Obama speaks during an "open for questions" town hall meeting on the economy in the East Room of the White House in Washington, DC. Obama fielded online questions from the public during a live webcast of an event he called an effort to "open up the White House to the American people. (AFP/Mandel Ngan)
“WhiteHouse.gov is once again asking the public to pose questions directly to President Obama via its ‘Open For Questions‘ service.,” the organization said on its website. “The topic of this week’s forum is the national economy, and not surprisingly, many of you have already put forward questions to the president regarding the taxation and regulation of cannabis.” “Please take a moment right now to log on the WhiteHouse.gov/OpenForQuestions and vote for the questions above, as well as others pertaining to the need to regulate cannabis. Let the president know that millions of American voters believe that the time has come to tax and regulate marijuana. Help us send the White House a message our elected leaders can’t ignore,” the statement said.
What is IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome)? What are the Symptoms of IBS? By Christian Nordqvist
BS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome), sometimes called spastic colon, is a functional bowel disorder that affects 30% of us at some time in our lives. 10% of people get it so badly that they need to seek medical help. If you suspect you may have IBS you should seek confirmation from a qualified doctor. Although the exact cause of IBS is unknown, a common theory is that Irritable Bowel Syndrome is a disorder in the interaction between the brain and gastrointestinal tract. However, there may also be abnormalities in the immune system or gut flora that contribute to this condition. The most common symptoms for IBS are: Abdominal pain, stomach cramps Constipation Diarrhea Bloated Stomach Noisy tummy Wind (flatulence) Digestion is too quick or too slow General feeling of being unwell (as a result of a combination of symptoms listed here) Dizziness Sickness (wanting to vomit) Backaches Some people get IBS so badly that they are unable to work. Many complain of not having a social life because of it. Several IBS patients find the ordeal so debilitating that they have to take anti-depressants.
The researchers found that all three therapies were effective IBS treatments compared to placebo or no treatment. In order to prevent IBS symptoms in one patient, 11 people needed to be treated with fiber, 5 with antispasmodics, or 2.5 with peppermint oil. In addition, there were no serious adverse effects associated with the treatments.
There is no cure for IBS; however there are treatments that can help relieve the symptoms. These include psychological interventions, medication and dietary changes. A number of IBS patients have managed to identify the source of their problem as food intolerance (they are allergic to certain foods). Identifying the food(s) can be done in various ways, one of which is with an elimination diet. One of the more common foods seems to be wheat.
Successful IBS Treatment With Peppermint Oil, Antispasmodics, And Fiber
According to a study published on bmj.com, doctors should recommend fiber, antispasmodics, and peppermint oil as firstline treatments for irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Recent proof of the effectiveness of these treatments should also lead to changes in the national guidelines that specify how to manage IBS.
Affecting between 5% and 20% of the population, IBS is a condition that causes abdominal pain and irregular bowel movements. Currently, it is difficult to treat IBS because we do not know exactly what causes it. Usual therapies consist of fiber supplements, probiotics, antidepressants, hypnotherapy, and laxatives. This treatment uncertainty, however, has resulted in the promotion of complementary and alternative treatments by international and national bodies. An example of this is the recently-
published National Institute of Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) guidelines on the management of IBS.
Therapies to treat IBS such as fiber, antispasmodics and peppermint oil have been studied, but their effectiveness has not been proven due to conflicting conclusions and errors in analysis. To further clarify the effects of these treatments, Dr. Alex Ford (McMaster University, Ontario, Canada) and colleagues conducted a review and meta-analysis of randomized trials. The trials - totaling over 2500 adult IBS patients compared fiber, antispasmodics and peppermint oil to placebo or no treatment.
In the twelve papers (591 patients in total) that analyzed fiber, insoluble fiber such as bran was not found to be beneficial while isphaghula husk (soluble fiber) was found to significantly reduce symptoms. There were 22 studies with 1,778 patients that focused on various antispasmodics. The researchers found that hyoscine most successfully prevented IBS symptoms. Hyoscine - extracted from the cork wood tree - is also recommended by the authors to be the first-line antispasmodic therapy in primary care. According to four trials involving 392 patients, peppermint oil appears to be the most effective treatment among the three.
Although these treatments are effective, safe, and available over the counter, they have been overlooked after newer and more expensive drugs were introduced. Since all three treatments have been shown to be potentially effective therapies for IBS, "Current national guidelines for the management of the condition should be updated to include these data," conclude the authors.
MAY â€˘ 2009
What is swine influenza? Swine influenza (swine flu) is a respiratory disease of pigs caused by type A influenza virus that regularly causes outbreaks of influenza in pigs.
wine flu viruses cause high levels of illness and low death rates in pigs. Swine influenza viruses may circulate among swine throughout the year, but most outbreaks occur during the late fall and winter months similar to outbreaks in humans. The classical swine flu virus (an influenza type A H1N1 virus) was first isolated from a pig in 1930.
How many swine flu viruses are there?
Like all influenza viruses, swine flu viruses change constantly. Pigs can be infected by avian influenza and human influenza viruses as well as swine influenza viruses. When influenza viruses from different species infect pigs, the viruses can reassort (i.e. swap genes) and new viruses that are a mix of swine, human and/or avian influenza viruses can emerge. Over the years, different variations of swine flu viruses have emerged. At this time, there are four main influenza type A virus subtypes that have been isolated in pigs: H1N1, H1N2, H3N2, and H3N1. However, most of the recently isolated influenza viruses from pigs have been H1N1 viruses.
The symptoms of swine flu in people are expected to be similar to the symptoms of regular human seasonal influenza and include fever, lethargy, lack of appetite and coughing. Some people with swine flu also have reported runny nose, sore throat, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.
Can people catch swine flu from eating pork?
No. Swine influenza viruses are not transmitted by food. You can not get swine influenza from eating pork or pork products. Eating properly handled and cooked pork and pork products is safe. Cooking pork to an internal temperature of 160Â°F kills the swine flu virus, as it does other bacteria and viruses.
How does swine flu spread?
Influenza viruses can be directly transmitted from pigs to people and from people to pigs. Human infection with flu viruses from pigs are most likely to occur when people are in close proximity to infected pigs, such as in pig barns and livestock exhibits housing pigs at fairs. Human-to-human transmission of swine flu can also occur. This is thought to occur in the same way as seasonal flu occurs in people, which is mainly person-toperson transmission through coughing or sneezing of people infected with the in-
personnel who had contact with the patient developed mild influenza-like illnesses with antibody evidence of swine flu infection.
ter. The swine influenza A virus collected from a Fort Dix soldier was named A/New Jersey/76 (Hsw1N1).
To diagnose swine influenza A infection, a respiratory specimen would generally need to be collected within the first four to five days of illness (when an infected person is most likely to be shedding virus). However, some people, especially children, may shed virus for 10 days or longer. Identification as a swine flu influenza A virus requires sending the specimen to CDC for laboratory testing.
No. The H1N1 swine flu viruses are antigenically very different from human H1N1 viruses and, therefore, vaccines for human seasonal flu would not provide protection from H1N1 swine flu viruses.
How can human infections with swine influenza be diagnosed?
What medications are available to treat swine flu infections in humans?
There are four antiviral drugs that are licensed for use in the United States for the treatment of influenza: amantadine, rimantadine, oseltamivir and zanamivir. While most swine influenza viruses have been susceptible to all four drugs, the most recent swine influenza viruses isolated from humans are resistant to amantadine and rimantadine. At this time, CDC recommends the use of oseltamivir or zanamivir for the treatment and/or prevention of infection with swine influenza viruses.
Can humans catch swine flu?
How common is swine flu infection in humans?
In the past, CDC received reports of approximately one human swine influenza virus infection every one to two years in the United States, but from December 2005 through February 2009, 12 cases of human infection with swine influenza have been reported.
What are the symptoms of swine flu in humans?
What Is a Flu Pandemic?
Every so often, a flu virus emerges that is either new or has not circulated in many years. If it is able to spread easily from person to person, it can quickly travel around the world and cause serious illness and death for millions of people. This is called a flu pandemic. There have been a number of flu pandemics within the last century.
Is the H1N1 swine flu virus the same as human H1N1 viruses?
Swine Flu in Pigs
How does swine flu spread among pigs?
Swine flu viruses are thought to be spread mostly through close contact among pigs and possibly from contaminated objects moving between infected and uninfected pigs. Herds with continuous swine flu infections and herds that are vaccinated against swine flu may have sporadic disease, or may show only mild or no symptoms of infection.
What are signs of swine flu in pigs?
Signs of swine flu in pigs can include sudden onset of fever, depression, coughing (barking), discharge from the nose or eyes, sneezing, breathing difficulties, eye redness or inflammation, and going off feed.
How common is swine flu among pigs?
Swine Flu in Humans
Swine flu viruses do not normally infect humans. However, sporadic human infections with swine flu have occurred. Most commonly, these cases occur in persons with direct exposure to pigs (e.g. children near pigs at a fair or workers in the swine industry). In addition, there have been documented cases of one person spreading swine flu to others. For example, an outbreak of apparent swine flu infection in pigs in Wisconsin in 1988 resulted in multiple human infections, and, although no community outbreak resulted, there was antibody evidence of virus transmission from the patient to health care workers who had close contact with the patient.
fluenza virus. People may become infected by touching something with flu viruses on it and then touching their mouth or nose.
What do we know about humanto-human spread of swine flu?
In September 1988, a previously healthy 32-year-old pregnant woman was hospitalized for pneumonia and died eight days later. A swine H1N1 flu virus was detected. Four days before getting sick, the patient visited a county fair swine exhibition where there was widespread influenza-like illness among the swine.
In follow-up studies, 76% of swine exhibitors tested had antibody evidence of swine flu infection but no serious illnesses were detected among this group. Additional studies suggest that one to three health care
Hand Washing Can Stop The Swine Flu
The simple act of hand-washing has become even more important during the swine flu outbreak, because it can help stop the spread of flu germs. While we now take for granted the importance of hand-washing to prevent colds, the importance of hand-washing was discovered only 150 years ago.
What other examples of swine flu outbreaks are there?
Probably the most well known is an outbreak of swine flu among soldiers in Fort Dix, N.J. in 1976. The virus caused disease with X-ray evidence of pneumonia in at least four soldiers and one death; all of these patients had previously been healthy. The virus was transmitted to close contacts in a basic training environment, with limited transmission outside the basic training group. The virus is thought to have circulated for a month and disappeared. The source of the virus, the exact time of its introduction into Fort Dix, and factors limiting its spread and duration are unknown. The Fort Dix outbreak may have been caused by introduction of an animal virus into a stressed human population in close contact in crowded facilities during the win-
What Causes the Flu?
H1N1 and H3N2 swine flu viruses are endemic among pig populations in the United States and something that the industry deals with routinely. Outbreaks among pigs normally occur in colder weather months (late fall and winter) and sometimes with the introduction of new pigs into susceptible herds. Studies have shown that the swine flu H1N1 is common throughout pig populations worldwide, with 25 percent of animals showing antibody evidence of infection. In the United States studies have shown that 30 percent of the pig population has antibody evidence of having had H1N1 infection.
More specifically, 51 percent of pigs in the north-central United States have been shown to have antibody evidence of infection with swine H1N1. Human infections with swine flu H1N1 viruses are rare. There is currently no way to differentiate antibody produced in response to flu vaccination in pigs from antibody made in response to pig infections with swine H1N1 influenza.
Is there a vaccine for swine flu?
Vaccines are available to be given to pigs to prevent swine influenza. There is no vaccine to protect humans from swine flu. The seasonal influenza vaccine probably will help provide partial protection against swine H3N2, but not swine H1N1 viruses.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that 5 to 20 percent of Americans come down with the flu during each flu season, which typically lasts from November to March. Children are two to three times more likely than adults to get sick with the flu, and children frequently spread the virus to others. Although most people recover from the illness, CDC estimates that in the United States more than 200,000 people are hospitalized and about 36,000 people die from the flu and its complications every year.
Is It the Flu, or Just a Cold?
If you get infected by the flu virus, you will usually feel symptoms one to four days later. You can spread the flu to others before your symptoms start and for three to four days after your symptoms appear.
6 MAY • 2009
ccording to Chinese legend, there once was an old man who lived in the shadow of 2 mountains. He was unable to move about freely, so he resolved to move the mountains. He gathered his sons together, and they inmediately set about digging. His neighbors came by and scoffed at the old man’s folly. The old man replied calmly, “I have sons, and my sons will have sons, and their sons will have sons. Yet, the mountain will never grow higher.” The old man’s determination was felt even in the heavens, and 2 immortals rewarded his by removing the mountains. A Buddhist teaching advises that if one person does a good deed for you, you must repay it with good deeds for 10 others. “Why did you want to become a doctor?” the medical student asked me. I had answered this question many times before. My rather typical answer back during my medical school interviews was that I was interested in science, I looked forward to intellectual challenges, and I wanted to help people. There was mucho more to it, of course. To answer the question of how I became a doctor required going back at least 2 generations to explore my forebears’ greatest hopes and aspirations. My brother and I had an obligation to become physicians to fulfill my grandmother’s American dream. We also had a debt to repay, for the gift of my brother’s life. “How much time do you have? I asked the medical student. “You may have to miss rounds for this.” My grandmother, Jade, was born in rural China in 1896. “Jade” was an appropiate name, for like the stone she was named for, she was both beautiful and strong. Her father was a merchant. Her mother, as was common in those days, was illiterate. China in my grandmothers’s youth was in the last years of the Ching dynasty. The emperors had failed to keep up with the modern world, and thus China was hidebound by obsolete traditions. But Jade’s parents were progressive. Although girls in general were subservient and completely dependent on their families, Jade was unusual in that she had received some schooling. Her father supporteds the movement of Dr. Sun Yat-sen, a physician trained in the West, who spoke tirelessly of overthrowing the Ching dynasty and forming a modern China. Dr. Sun became a hero to Jade. She saw him as an intellectual ideal, a learned man who had the practial skills to heal patients and the idealism to cure society’s ills. She thought more than once how fine it would be if she could become an intellectual, like Dr. Sun. Although the emperor was deposed in 1911, China continued to be politically and economically unstable. Seeing little oportunity for his children in the old country, Jade’s father encouraged each of his children to go to “Gold Mountain” as the Chinese had named America. Although most went to Gold Mountain seeking material wealth, Jade had greater visions. She saw America as a land where
one could become educated and intellectually fulfilled. Eventually, opportunity presented itself. Jade’s parents arranged her marriage to a man named Yuen Doon. Yuen was neither rich nor handsome, but he did promise to bring his new bride to America, and that proved quite enough to complete the bargain. Soon after they married, the couple sailed to California. Jade was filled with excitement and anticipation. Is was not until that first night, when Yuen Doon ushered her into a decrepit old building with boarded-up windows, that she began to experience the harsh realties of life on Gold Mountain. With little knowledge of English and no marketable skills, the couple had to perform the most menial of labors just to schatch out a meager living. Yuen Doon toiled away in a barbershop, while Jade picked tomatoes under the hot California sun. During infrequent breaks, Jade worked on her strategy for providing her as-yet unborn children with college educations. And then she aimed even higher. “Why not?’ she asked herself, wiping her grimy hands. “My son will be a doctor, just like Dr. Sun. He should be skilled and practical enough to cure patients, yet idealistic enoguh to cure society’s ills. She resumed her tomato picking with a fury no one else could compete with. Jade was often frustrated by the couple’s continued poverty. Whatever dreams she had in China of becoming an intellectual were dashed when she realized just how little money she and her husband could realistically earn. However, the arrival of ther first daughter in 1924 changed everything. Now she had a true purpose:
“Why did you want to become a doctor?” the medical student asked me. I had answered this question many times before.
to care for this baby and give her every opportunity in life. As it turned out, Ruth was a sickly child. The young parents decided to consult a traditional herbalist in Nevada known to the Chinese community as “Dr. Wong.” Dr. Wong soon nursed the girl back to health and came to love her so much that he became her godfather. He would continue to play a prominent part in her life. And, according to Buddhist philosophy, the good deed he had done for her would have to be repaid 10-fold in the future. In the early 1930s. the growing family settled in New York’s Chinatown. Jade ketp trying to have a boy, still pursuing the hope that her future son would be a physician, but this never worked exactly according to plan: Although 7 children arrived, all of them were girls. Nonetheless, in an era in which many
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women never even aspired to higher education, she determined that all of her girls would attend college. Life during the Great Depression continued to be difficult for the Wong family. Yuen Doon tried his hand at many different business entreprises, including a hat-cleaning stone and a restaurant, but it was a rough time all around for entrepreneurs. Jade worked long hours in a garment factory, sewing all day in the hot, airless, cluttered building. Then she returned home to cook, clean and do the mending and sewing for her own brood. Yet all during those tedious, dreary days, she continued unwaveringly toward her goal of saving enough money to get her girls through college. By the early 1940s, the older girls, now in their teens, were able to work after school. They dutifully handed over their earnings to Jade, and at last, the family was able to afford a larger flat with some nice furniture. The family’s fortunes were seemingly changing for the better, up until the fatefull day that Ruth came home and announced that she wanted to become a doctor. Ruth had long been aware that her goodfather had nursed her back to health many years before. As she grew older and did exceedingly well in high school and the college, “Dr. Wong” encouraged her to become a physician. This was in an era when few women wen to medical school, and almost none were Asian. The idea had not even occurred to Jade, forwardthinking as she was. However, Ruth boldly embraced the challenge. Yet, this was not just Ruth’s challenge– it was the entire family’s challenge, because
only by having all of the daughters of working-age hand over nearly all of their earnings could that one family member attend medical school. The other daughters did so with mixed feelings, because the knew the were giving up their own time and careers for their sister’s sake. Perhaps the other sisters harbored secret dreams of following in Ruth’s footsteps– but one would ever have the opportunity. Gloria, the youngest daughter, would become a teacher. But that is how a family can move mountains. And that is how Ruth was going to become a physician and pay her debt to her godfather. But there is more. As an infant, my brother nearly died of salmoella infection. Fortunately, my parents consulted Aunt Ruth the pediatrician, and of course she pulled him trough. Over the years, she had pulled lots of children through, first in Chinatown and later in Paterson, New Jersey. She practiced pediatrics for 17 years before becomomg a pediatric psychiatrist. If she had done her community a great service as a pediatrician, she probably did even better work as a psychiatrist. She became a heroine to the social workers, as she always seemed to get the mos difficult cases, always gave completely of ther time and heart, and was better at solving problems than anyone else. And so it was almost inevitable that my brother and I both became physicians. To this day, we continue to live our grandomther’s American dream, while paying our debt to Aunt Ruth for the gift of my brother’s life. It has taken years of sacrifice, but the mountains have been moved at last.
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MAY • 2009
Wellington Regional Medical Center
Providing sophisticated and comprehensive healthcare services to the residents of Palm Beach County Cambridge Who’s Who Names Dr. Jeffrey M. Bishop Executive of the Year
By Dr. Jeffrey M. Bishop Chief Medical Officer and Director of Medical Education at Wellington Regional Medical Center
Wellington Regional Medical Center is a 158 bed community hospital conveniently located on the corner of Forest Hill Boulevard and State Road 7/441. The hospital is accredited by The Joint Commission, and has a cancer program accredited by the American College of Surgeons. Since it opened its doors in 1986, Wellington Regional Medical Center has been committed to providing sophisticated and comprehensive healthcare services to the residents of Palm Beach County. Over the years, we have worked to develop new programs and services to meet the needs of our growing community, all the while committed to hospital-wide philosophy of service excellence. The regional Cancer Center at Wellington, a well-respected outpatient radiation treatment facility located on the campus of the hospital, offers some of the latest modalities in cancer treatment available today. This includes the new Novalis® System by BrainLAB for extremely precise radiaton treatment to target tumors in delicate areas, while preserving healthy tissue. Also, on the cutting edge of radiation treatment, the
Center has recently installed the new Triology by Varian Medical Systems, providing the most avanced form or radiation theraphy currently available.
Other hospitals services include the Center for Wound Care and Hyperbaric Medicine housing four hyperbaric oxygen tanks. Specially trained and experienced physicians and staff offer comprehensive wound care with above national average healing rates. Services at the Center also include a Diabetic Foot Care Program. The Wellington Surgical Weight Loss Center offers Roux-en-Y, LapBAND, Gastric Sleeve and revisional bariatric surgeries. This comprehensive program includes preoperative education, monthly seminars and support groups, an experienced surgical team, privated couseling, dietary and nutritional counseling, physical therapy and a postoperative plan of care and follow-up. An Orthopedic Institute offers a full array of orthopedic specialists as well as a neurosurgery/spine program with a 24-bed unit dedicated to post-op care of the orthopedic patient with well-trained orthopedic nurses and staff. Two dedicated OR suites are designed with laminar airflow to decrease infections. The Outpatient Diagnostic Center at Wellington offers a full array of diagnostic
services including high field MRI, ultrasound nuclear medicine and CT. In addition, to diagnostic procedures, we offer minimally invasive procedures. The Comprehensive Women’s Imaging Center has gone digital, offering screening and diagnostic mammograms, bone densitometry, breast MRI and ultrasound, as well as ultrasound for obstetric, gynecologic and urologic problems. Other services provided include breast biopsy, pre-operative needle localization, sentinel node maping, and a fibroid treatment program. Other services include cardiac catheterization lab, pulmonary function lab. A free physician referral service is available to help find the right physician from a medical staff of over 500 physicians, representing more than 40 specialties. A number of ongoing support groups, education classes, physician lectures and screening are available to the community throughout the year. Also have an Internship and Family Practice, Dermatology, and Internal Medicine Residency programs for the past 20 years and are affiliated with Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine. Also WRMC was just approved by the state as a Level One Adult Interventional cardiology Program and a Primary Stroke Center. You may call 561-798-9880 for more information on the support groups.
New level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Wellington Regional Medical Center
By Dr. Jeffrey M. Bishop Chief Medical Officer and Director of Medical Education at Wellington Regional Medical Center
The Centre for Family Beginnings at Wellington continues to earn its welldeserved reputation for providing high quality medical care and personalized attention. Every one of the nearly 3,000 babies delivered annually is special to us.
Using a fa-mily centered approach, we reconized the importance of the family unit for the growth, development and well-being of each of its members. We strive to provide the most supportive, nurturing enviroment possible.
The maternity unit offers 18 private labor - delivery - recovery suites and 20 beautiful private postpartum and antepartum rooms.
The hospital now offers the services of a beatiful 25 bed, state of the art Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit for babies born prematurely or requiring special medical attention. The NICU provides advanced medical technology for the widest range of newborn conditions provided by neonatologists, who staff the unit 24 hours a day, seven days a week and specially trained NICU nurses and respiratory therapists.
The expertise of Lactation specialists is available daily to provide new mothers with individualized breastfeeding support. A full complement of prenatal classes is available to parents to be, including Lamaze and Infant CPR.
Take a tour of the Centre for Family Beginnings at Wellington Maternity Unit. Call 561-753-2626 to reserve your place.
Dr. Jeffrey M. Bishop, Chief Medical Officer and Director of Medical Education at Wellington Regional Medical Center, has been named Cambridge Who’s Who Executive of the Year in Medical Administration and Education. While inclusion in Cambridge Who’s Who Registry is an honor, only two male and two female members in each discipline are named the Cambridge Who’s Who Executive of the Year. The Cambridge Who’s Who selection committee chooses these special honorees based on their accomplishments, academic achievements, leadership, and service. After dedicating 22 years of service to the Palm Beach community as former owner and practicing physician of Western Communities Family Practice, Dr. Bishop was offered the prestigious role of Chief Medical Officer and Director of Medical Education at Wellington Regional Medical Center where he provides leadership and direction in the formulation of overall medical policy governing treatment, utilization and development of medical quality assurance programs. He also fosters relationships among the hospital's medical staff, providing centralized support services in credentialing and continuing medical education. Dr. Bishop is the Director of Medical Education overseeing the Family Practice, Internal Medicine and Dermatology Residency Programs. He continues to serve as an adjunct professor for the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine and enjoys consulting physicians and local businesses about his experiences in the medical business world. Dr. Bishop, a board-certified family physician, earned his medical degree from the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine. Over the years, Dr. Bishop has held various positions at Wellington Regional Medical Center including Chairman of the Family Practice Department, Vice Chief and Chief of Staff and program director for the Family Residency Program. He has also served as Wellington Regional's Chairman of the Board of Governors. Dr. Bishop is a Diplomat of the National Board of Osteopathic Physicians and Surgeons and is member of many professional organizations including the Florida Academy of Osteopathy, Florida Osteopathic Medical Association, Florida Society of American College of General Practitioners, American Osteopathic Association, and many others. Dr. Bishop remains active in community service and is a strong supporter of hospital charities and local sports teams. In 2007, he was awarded a proclamation for his contributions to the community of Wellington, Florida. Dr. Bishop served in the U.S. Navy as one of the youngest physician assistants in the early 1970s. He considers perseverance and integrity to be the driving forces behind his success.
8 MAY • 2009
Drink a Little Wine, Live a Little Longer
By Kathleen Doheny
en who regularly drank up to a half a glass of wine each day boosted their life expectancy by five years, Dutch researchers report.
Light, long-term alcohol consumption of all types of beverages, whether wine, spirits or beer, increased life by 2.5 years among men compared with abstention, the researchers found. By "light," they meant up to 20 grams, or about 0.7 ounces a day. While numerous other studies have found similar benefits, study author Martinette Streppel, of the division of human nutrition at Wageningen University in the Netherlands, said 40 years of follow-up is noteworthy for many reasons. "The main strength of our study was the collection of detailed information on the consumption of different alcohol beverages at each of seven measurement rounds," Streppel said.
The long-term, regular follow-up, Streppel added, enabled the researchers to study the effect of long-term alcohol intake on mortality. The study is published online in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.
The Dutch researchers evaluated 1,373 men, all part of the Zutphen Study, started in
1960 and named for an industrial town in the Netherlands. The researchers followed them from 1960 to 2000, tracking weight, diet, cigarette smoking, the diagnosis of serious illness and other data, along with their drinking habits.
Over the follow-up period, 1,130 of the men died, half from cardiovascular disease.
The proportion of men who drank alcohol nearly doubled from 45 percent of the men in 1960 to 86 percent in 2000. Those drinking wine rose even more dramatically -from just 2 percent to 44 percent.
The findings in more detail: All long-term light alcohol drinking boosted life expectancy by about 2.5 years in comparison to abstainers. Drinking more than 0.7 ounces a day extended life expectancy by nearly two years compared with nondrinkers.
Wine drinkers who averaged just 0.7 ounces a day had a 2.5 year-longer life expectancy at age 50 compared to those who drank beer or spirits. And their life expectancy was nearly five years longer than nondrinkers. Drinking moderately was linked with lower death risk, and drinking wine was strongly linked with a lower risk of dying from heart disease, stroke or other causes. Streppel couldn't say if the findings apply to women, but suspects the polyphenolic com-
Study finds half a glass each day boosts men's life expectancy by five years. pounds found in wine, especially red wine, produce the heart-healthy effects. The study adds to the literature of the health benefits of alcohol, but has both strengths and weaknesses, said Dr. Arthur Klatsky, a long-time investigator on the health benefits of alcohol. "Once again, it shows that people who drink [moderately] do a lot better than people who don't in terms of survival," he said.
However, as with other research, Klatsky wondered if it's the pattern of drinking or something related to the wine drinking -such as wine drinkers being more likely to exercise or eat a healthy diet -- that is the real link. In the new Dutch study, he says, alcohol from spirits contributes the most to the total alcohol intake, more than wine or beer. "It's a little hard to think that a little bit of wine is what is responsible for extending their life," Klatsky said.
The finding, like similar ones, applies more to middle-aged people than younger ones, he said. "People over 50 are the ones most likely to have health benefits from light drinking anyways."
Much more important in reducing heart disease risk, he said, is not smoking, exercising regularly, eating healthfully and maintaining a healthy weight.
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Pyrosis or heartburn Local Neurosurgeon
Burning sensation in the chest and throat
Brings A World Of Expertise To South Florida
One of the most commonly asked questions in my practice deals with pyrosis, also known as heartburn. It consists of sensations of fullness burning or warmth. hese feelings are located behind the sternum, the mid region of the chest, or upper abdomen. Common causes include gastroesophageal reflux disease which is often seen in hiatal hernia. In this case heartburn is caused by the reflux of stomach acid into the esophagus which leads to irritation of the lining of the esophagus. Ingestion of certain foods and drugs as aspirin, antiarthritic medications, or alcohol may be responsible.
MAY • 2009
Most of us would never consider the need of a neurosurgeon, after all most of us do not need surgery on our brain. But the truth of the matter is, if you suffer from back or neck pain a neurosurgeon could be your best chance of relief.
Shekhar V. Sharma M.D. Board Certified in Internal Medicine
Infrequently, it may be the result of aerophagia, the swallowing of air in excess, wich can be attributed to psychological factors. Heartburn may move up and down the chest like a wave or may also radiate when severe to the sides of the chest, neck and angles of the jaw. What many people fail to recognize is that heartburn may be an indication of something more serious such as angina, which is impaired blood supply to the heart muscle. Left improperly diagnosed or treated, this may lead to heart attack. The lay man might believe the appropiate treatment for heartburn to be over the counter antiacids. However, though this may be correct in some cases, those who have risk factors for heart disease should immediately consult their physician for proper diagnosis.
Often times, patients come to me terrified by just the thought of surgery.” Traditionally brain and spine surgery would require large open incisions and lengthy recovery periods. However, with new minimally invasive techniques Dr. Daré offers, amazing results can be accomplished with extremely small incisions and minimal trauma to the body allowing patients to leave the same day. “All too often, however, patients are unable to take advantage of these new developments, because they are not being treated by specialists who have been trained in these advanced techniques”. Dr. Amos Daré is a graduate of Yale University School of Medicine in New Haven, Connecticut. He completed his surgical internship and residency in Neurological Surgery at New York University Hospitals and the State University of New York, Buffalo. He received his fellowship training at the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas. Dr. Daré is a member of the American
Association of Neurological Surgeons, the American Medical Association and the Palm Beach County Medical Association. Dr. Daré is a board certified neurological surgeon. With such an extensive background and training, Dr. Daré has earned the respect of fellow surgeons as well as the community. “I have had the pleasure of assisting Dr. Daré in the operating room; he is one of the most finesse and skilled surgeons in Florida.” Rajen Naidoo, M.D., Assistant Professor Orthopedic Surgery, Mt. Sinai School of Medicine, NY. “Dr. Daré, thank you so very much for giving me a second chance of living a life pain free and more importantly a better quality of life in which I can stand tall and walk! You made a difference and changed my life. Thank you for your professional, caring, supportive and patient demeanor throughout my surgery and recovery.” Patient
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Study: Lots of red meat increases mortality risk 10 MAY â€˘ 2009
By CARLA K. JOHNSON, AP Medical Writer
CHICAGO â€“ The largest study of its kind finds that older Americans who eat large amounts of red meat and processed meats face a greater risk of death from heart disease and cancer. The federal study of more than half a million men and women bolsters prior evidence of the health risks of diets laden with red meat like hamburger and processed meats like hot dogs, bacon and cold cuts. Calling the increased risk modest, lead author Rashmi Sinha of the National Cancer Institute said the findings support the advice of several health groups to limit red and processed meat intake to decrease cancer risk. Over 10 years, eating the equivalent of a quarter-pound hamburger daily gave men in the study a 22 percent higher risk of dying of cancer and a 27 percent higher risk of dying of heart disease. That's compared to those who ate the least red meat, just 5 ounces per week.
Women who ate large amounts of red meat had a 20 percent higher risk of dying of cancer and a 50 percent higher risk of dying of heart disease than women who ate less. For processed meats, the increased risks for large quantities were slightly lower overall than for red meat. The researchers compared deaths in the people with the highest intakes to deaths in people with the lowest to calculate the increased risk. People whose diets contained more white meat like chicken and fish had lower risks of death. The researchers surveyed more than 545,000 people, ages 50 to 71 years old, on their eating habits, then followed them for 10 years. There were more than 70,000 deaths during that time. Study subjects were recruited from AARP members, a group that's healthier than other similarly aged Americans. That means the findings may not apply to all groups, Sinha said. The study relied on people's memory of what they ate, which can be faulty. In the analysis, the researchers took into account other risk factors such as smoking,
family history of cancer and high body mass index. In an accompanying editorial, Barry Popkin, director of the Interdisciplinary Obesity Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, wrote that reducing meat intake would have benefits beyond improved health. Livestock increase greenhouse gas emissions, contributing to global warming, he wrote, and nations should reevaluate farm
Studies suggest drinking coffee or tea may reduce the risk of stroke By JOHN FAUBER Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
MILVWAUKEE- The role coffee and tea play in a person's risk of having a stroke got a little clearer recently as two large observational studies found that the beverages may actually provide a modest amount of protection. For coffee, the more that was consumed -up to a point -- the lower the risk. In a study that followed 83,000 women for 24 years, researchers found that those who drank four or more cups of coffee a day were 20 percent less likely to have a stroke than those who drank less than one cup a month. Those who drank two to three cups a day had a 19 percent reduced risk and those who drank five to seven cups a week had a 12 percent reduction in risk, according to the Nurses' Health Study published last month in the journal Stroke. The reduced risk was more than double in those who did not smoke. Non-smokers who drank four or more cups of coffee a day were 43 percent less likely to have a stroke, but among smokers the risk reduction was only 3 percent. The researchers warned that any beneficial effects of coffee cannot counterbalance the ill effects of smoking. They added that the effects can be applied only to healthy people. Coffee can worsen conditions such as insomnia, anxiety and high blood pressure, so patients should talk to their doctor about how coffee might affect those health problems, the researchers said. And they said people should not take up drinking coffee as a way to reduce their risk of stroke. "If people want to reduce their stroke risk, they should prioritize other lifestyle changes: quitting smoking, increasing physical activity and eating a diet centered
around whole grains and fruits and vegetables," said senior author Rob van Dam, an assistant professor of medicine at the Harvard School of Public Health and Brigham and Women's Hospital. He said more study is needed to prove that coffee protects against stroke, "but results are reassuring in that coffee consumption does not seem harmful for stroke risk." Other caffeinated beverages such as tea, as well as decaffeinated coffee, were not associated with a reduction in risk. However, a separate analysis published in January in the journal Circulation found that both green and black tea consumption seemed to protect against stroke. The article was a review of nine studies involving 195,000 people. It found that those who drank three or more cups of tea a day had a 21 percent reduction in stroke risk compared with those who drank less than one cup a day. Because it is such a popular drink, coffee and its effect on health, especially heart disease, have received a great deal of attention.
Studies have produced mixed results, but a 2006 article that studied 128,000 men and women for up to 20 years found no evidence that drinking coffee increased the risk of coronary heart disease. In fact, those who drank more than six cups a day had a reduced risk of heart disease, according to the study published in Circulation, although researchers cautioned that unfiltered coffee may raise cholesterol. Some large observational studies also found that drinking coffee might reduce the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. Tea, on the other hand, has been associated with a reduction in heart disease risk. A 2001 analysis of seven studies found that for every three cups of tea consumed a day, the risk of a heart attack declined by 11 percent. Diane Book, an associate professor of neurology at the Medical College of Wisconsin, said that more research is pointing to a possible stroke benefit from drinking tea and coffee but that it has not reached the point of being proof.
subsidies that distort prices and encourage meat-based diets. "We've promoted a diet that has added excessively to global warming," Popkin said in an interview. Successfully shifting away from red meat can be as easy as increasing fruits and vegetables in the diet, said Elisabetta Politi of the Duke Diet and Fitness Center in Durham, N.C. "I'm not saying everybody should turn into vegetarians," Politi said. "Meat should be a supporting actor on the plate, not the main character." The National Pork Board and National Cattlemen's Beef Association questioned the findings. Dietitian Ceci Snyder said in a statement for the pork board that the study "attempts to indict all red meat consumption by looking at extremes in meat consumption, as opposed to what most Americans eat." Lean meat as part of a balanced diet can prevent chronic disease, along with exercise and avoiding smoking, said Shalene McNeill, dietitian for the beef group.
What's That Smell? Ask a Woman, Not a Man
(HealthDay News) -- Women's noses can penetrate fancy colognes and detect male body odor, but men don't have the same ability, say U.S. researchers. And they speculate that women may be more sensitive to biologically relevant information in sweat that might, in fact, help them select a mate. "It is quite difficult to block a woman's awareness of body odor. In contrast, it seems rather easy to do so in men," Charles J. Wysocki, a behavioral neuroscientist at the Monell Chemical Senses Center in Philadelphia and the study's lead author, said in a news release from the center. In the study, male and female volunteers rated the strength of underarm odor, both alone and in conjunction with various fragrances. Underarm odors alone smelled equally strong to women and men. But when fragrances were introduced, only two of 32 fragrances blocked underarm odor when women were doing the sniffing, compared with 19 fragrances that blocked the odor for men. The study was published online in Flavour and Fragrance Journal. The results "indicate that human sweat conveys information that is of particular importance to females," Wysocki said. "This may explain why it is so difficult to block women's perception of sweat odors." Wysocki's co-leader, George Preti, an analytical organic chemist at Monell, further explained the different perceptions of body odor among men and women. "Women are more aware of underarm odor, and they appear to be detecting differences in odor quality," Preti said.
MAY • 2009
Lower Rate Of Liver Disease In African-Americans May Be Explained By Difference In Fat Storage Where different ethnic groups store fat in their bodies may account for differences in the likelihood they'll develop insulin resistance and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center have found.
ccording to research reported in the online edition and the March issue of Hepatology, AfricanAmericans with insulin resistance might harbor factors that protect them from this form of metabolic liver disease.
Despite similarly high rates of associated risk factors such as insulin resistance, obesity and diabetes among African-Americans and Hispanics, African-Americans are less likely than Hispanics to develop non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, or NAFLD. The disease is characterized by high levels of triglycerides in the liver and affects as many as one-third of American adults.
"If we can identify the factors that protect African-Americans from this liver disease, we may be able to extrapolate those to other populations and perhaps develop targeted therapies to help populations prone to NAFLD," said Dr. Jeffrey Browning, assistant professor of internal medicine in the UT Southwestern Advanced Imaging Research Center and the study's senior author. Previous research has shown that when African-Americans do develop NAFLD, they're less likely to reach the later stages of liver disease. Prior work by Dr. Browning and other UT Southwestern scientists has revealed that NAFLD is more prevalent among Hispanics than African-Americans or Caucasians.
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The study found that African-Americans and Hispanics both have obesity rates of about 48 percent among their respective populations, as well as diabetes rates of about 21 percent. Only 23 percent of African-Americans, however, have NAFLD, compared with 45 percent of Hispanics.
Similarly, African-Americans are less likely to have high levels of triglycerides and abdominal fat - both characteristics of insulin resistance - when compared with Hispanics or Caucasians, even though overall rates of insulin resistance among all groups are the same, researchers found.
"This presents something of a paradox," Dr. Browning said. The explanation might lie in where different ethnic groups typically store fat.
Obese Hispanics tend to deposit fat in the liver and visceral adipose tissue - the area around the belly. Obese African-Americans deposit fat predominantly in subcutaneous adipose tissues - the area around the hips and thighs, Dr. Browning said.
"This may be protective," Dr. Browning said. "In animal studies, if subcutaneous fat is increased as opposed to visceral fat, you can actually reverse fatty liver disease." Scientists aren't sure why the location of fat storage matters.
"This seems to argue that there is a fundamental difference in the lipid metabolism between African-Americans and Hispanics or Caucasians, and this difference is maintained even when insulin resistance is present," Dr. Browning said.
In a tough economy, everyone needs to cut back on unnecessary expenses and save money wherever possible. Healthcare is often one of the largest expenses a family faces, but there are ways to cut healthcare costs without shortchanging your health.
* Don't ditch your gym membership. While it may seem like an easy cost to cut, losing the membership to the gym can be counterproductive. Ask about freeze and cancellation policies. Inquire about value-added services that may come free with your membership. Snap Fitness, for example, offers their members a host of online tools like meal planning, workout tracking and health and wellness coaching. Check with your health plan to find out if you can be reimbursed for all or part of your membership costs. Visit SnapFitness.com to find cost-effective special offers for new members.
Small Changes Can Mean Big Savings on Healthcare Costs
* When a doctor prescribes something for you, ask about the generic equivalent.
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For the current study, Dr. Browning and his colleagues analyzed data gathered in the multi-ethnic, population-based Dallas Heart Study. Starting in the year 2000, more than 2,100 participants provided blood samples and underwent multiple body scans with magnetic resonance imaging and computed tomography to examine the liver, heart and other organs. Body composition, including fat distribution, also was scrutinized.
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What People Think About Emerging Food Technology
12 MAY â€˘ 2009
Source: Food Standards Agency
People remain cautious about the emergence of new food technologies according to a review of existing research, published by the Food Standards Agency.
he report, which looks at research since 1999, brings together knowledge from the UK and beyond, on public opinion about up-and-coming food technologies, such as nanotechnologies and cloning. The findings will help to shape the FSA's future work on emerging technologies. According to the research, GM and animal cloning remain the areas of most concern for people. However, the review also showed that food technologies tended not to be a burning issue for the vast majority of people and often did not generate strong opinions.
Clair Baynton, Head of Novel Foods, Additives and Supplements at the Agency, said: 'Our top priority is to ensure the food on the shelves is as safe as it possibly can be, but we also need to be aware of how people feel about new technologies. Because so little tends to be known about emerging food technologies, attitudes towards them are frequently driven by emotions rather than facts. Understandably, people are wary when they're not sure about the benefits and risks. 'The FSA is working with Government departments and Europe to assess information and potential hazards in relation to the future use of technologies in the food sector.'
The research looked at public opinion concerning:
- nanotechnologies - functional foods - synthetic biology - GM food and crops - cloning - irradiation - novel food processes
The science behind the story
Nanotechnology is the manufacture and use of materials and structures at the nanometre scale (a nanometre is one millionth of a millimetre). There is some interest in using nanometre scale materials in food packaging, which could keep food fresher for longer, or monitor the quality of the food. Nanotechnologies can also be applied to food to help better absorption of vitamins or to help reduce fat or salt content of our food.
This is a loosely defined marketing term that is applied to foods containing added ingredients that have a supposed health benefit. Examples might be probiotic yoghurts, or cholesterol-lowering spreads.
Synthetic biology is a developing area of science, where it may be possible to build completely new organisms or biological systems by assembling genes in a laboratory. This is very much at the experimental stage and there are no current or proposed food applications.
Genetically modified (GM) food
Genetic modification involves altering a plant, animal or micro-organism's genes or inserting genes from another organism - that is, a living thing. Genes carry the instructions for all the characteristics that an organism inherits. They are made up of DNA. A number of GM foods have been cleared for use in the EU, although the use of these GM foods is not widespread in the UK.
Cloning involves the creation of an
animal (the clone) that is an exact genetic copy of another (the donor). Clones occur in nature and many plants, such as strawberries, reproduce in this way. Some animals also clone themselves, such as amoeba (a microscopic single-celled organism) and some insects, such as greenfly. There is no cloning of animals for food production in the UK and marketing of food from cloned animals would require authorisation under the novel foods law.
Irradiation can be used to kill the bacteria that cause food poisoning. It can also delay fruit ripening, help stop vegetables such as potatoes and onions from sprouting and delay other deterioration. It is a process that produces a similar effect to pasteurisation, cooking or other forms of heat treatment, but irradiation only raises the temperature of food by a few degrees and so there is less impact on taste, look and texture.
Novel food processes
This is a general term that applies to new ways of processing foods. Examples from the recent past include the use of microwave ovens to heat and cook foods, and the use of high pressure processing as a low-temperature alternative to pasteurisation e.g. for 'fresh-tasting' long life orange juice.
A Night at the Oscars
MAY • 2009
Tensy Caine, Jess Santamaria and Jaene Miranda.
he Palms West Chamber of Commerce rolled out the red carpet for local supporters at the 26th anniversary installation gala, themed “A Nigth at the Oscars”, on Friday April 24th at the International Polo Club in Wellington. The event celebrated contributions made by Chamber and community members in 2008. These heroes went above and beyond in their support. The community heroes were given token Oscar awards at the gala, which featured the installation of the new slate of Palms West Chamber of Commerce officers and directors, including incoming Chairman Kevin DiLallo. Musical entertaiment, a silent auction, reception and dinner made this event memorable.
Tensy Caine, Ira Greenbaum and Jaene Miranda.
Darell and Sherry Bowen.
Heidi Harland, Ranjita Sharma, Nirmala Tripuraneni, Seema Dass and friend.
Dr. Kishore Dass, Dr. Martin Harland, Dr. Shekhar Sharma and Dr. Krishna Tripuraneni.
Incoming Chairman Kevin DiLallo, CEO of Wellington Regional Medical Center and Ben Boynton.
Mike Nelson and Kathy Foster.
Tensy Caine, Dr. Veronica Pedro, Dr. Mike Mikalozcs, Jaene Miranda and friends.
Tensy Caine, Joanne Stanley, Carmine Priore III, Pat Eboli, Marc Seagrare and Jaene Miranda.
Tensy Caine, Sheriff Ric Bradshaw and Jaene Miranda.
Tensy Caine, Denise Smith and Jaene Miranda.
Several objets for the Silent Auction.
Tensy Caine, Mike O’Dell, David Albright, Susan Giddings and Jaene Miranda.
14 MAY • 2009
Easy Brunch Focaccia
Simple substitutions make a healthier morning meal
t’s been said that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. In addition to providing the necessary energy to get-up-and-go, studies have shown that those who eat a healthy breakfast have better overall diets, improved concentration and performance during the day, and more strength and endurance for physical activity. Unfortunately, the traditional hot breakfast — eggs, meat and potatoes — can add fat and calories to your plate. But, there’s good news for breakfast lovers who’ve resolved to eat better this year: with a few simple substitutions, you can still enjoy a hearty, satisfying morning meal without some of the guilt. To start, substitute a slice of whole grain toast for traditional white bread. If your morning beverage of choice is coffee with cream and sugar, try adding skim milk and a sugar substitute instead. A side of fresh fruit can be an easy way to increase your daily intake of fruits and vegetables while adding a smidgen of something sweet to your plate. For the main dish, toss a few vegetables into your eggs for added fiber and flavor. This Italian Frittata recipe is a hearty blend of broccoli, bell peppers, mushrooms, spices, cheese and veggie sausage links — all in one dish! By swapping out sausage for a veggie alternative, you’re skipping some of the unnecessary calories and saturated fat. Speaking of substituting meat, the new Morningstar Farms Maple Flavored Veggie Sausage Patties are a sweetand-savory alternative to traditional pre-cooked pork sausage, with 76 percent less fat. You can enjoy them alongside a serving of eggs or crumbled into any recipe that calls for maple-flavored sausage. In fact, they’re the main ingredient in this Easy Brunch Focaccia recipe — a delicious “breakfast pizza” that will have everyone around the table saying, “That’s amore!” For more recipes and fun food ideas, visit www.SeeVeggiesDifferently.com.
Easy Brunch Focaccia
Prep Time: 20 minutes Time to Table: 35 minutes 4 Morningstar Farms Maple Flavored Veggie Sausage Patties, thawed 1 tube (13.8 ounces) refrigerated pizza dough 3/4 cup finely chopped onion 2 teaspoons vegetable oil 1 teaspoon dried sage leaves 1/4 teaspoon pepper 1 cup finely chopped fresh pineapple or 1 can (8 ounces) pineapple tidbits (juice pack), drained 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded mozzarella cheese or cheddar cheese Cut the maple-flavored veggie sausage patties into bite-size pieces. Set aside. Unroll dough onto baking sheet coated with nonstick cooking spray. Press dough into 14 x 10-inch rectangle.
Prep Time: 20 minutes Time to Table: 30 minutes 1 cup refrigerated egg substitute 1 tablespoon fat-free milk 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano leaves 1/8 teaspoon garlic powder 1/8 teaspoon salt 1/8 teaspoon black pepper 1/4 cup chopped red bell pepper 1/4 cup chopped broccoli florets 4 ounces Morningstar Farms Veggie Breakfast Sausage Links, thawed 1/4 cup canned sliced mushrooms, drained 1/2 cup shredded fat-free cheddar cheese or reduced-fat cheddar cheese (2 ounces) In medium bowl, whisk together egg substitute, milk, oregano, garlic powder, salt and pepper. In small nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray, cook bell pepper, broccoli and veggie breakfast sausage links over medium heat until vegetables are tender. Remove from skillet. Set aside. In same skillet, cook egg mixture over medium-low heat until set. Top with vegetable mixture and mushrooms. Sprinkle with cheese. Tightly cover. Let stand for 3 to 5 minutes or until cheese melts. Yield: 2 servings
In small nonstick skillet cook onion in oil over medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes or until tender and beginning to brown, stirring occasionally. Stir in sage and pepper. Spread over dough. Arrange veggie sausage patty pieces and pineapple on top of onion mixture. Bake at 425°F for 8 to 10 minutes or until edges are brown.
Sprinkle with cheese. Bake at 425°F for 5 to 6 minutes more or until cheese melts and crust is golden brown. Cut into rectangles to serve. Serve warm. Yield: 6 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes Time to Table: 15 minutes 6 frozen Kellogg’s Eggo Nutri-Grain Pancakes or Kellogg’s Eggo Buttermilk Pancakes 3 Morningstar Farms Maple Flavored Veggie Sausage Patties 1 tablespoon apple, cherry or strawberry preserves Prepare pancakes according to package directions. Cook maple-flavored veggie sausage patties according to package directions. Cut each patty in half.
Spread preserves on warm pancakes. Top each with veggie sausage patty half. Fold pancakes around veggie sausage patties. Serve immediately. Yield: 6 sandwiches; 3 servings
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ow much will owning a pet cost? How much time do I really need to devote to a pet? These are questions potential pet owners should ask prior to adopting. However, not everyone takes the time to assess the responsibilities and requirements associated with pet ownership, increasing the likelihood a pet will be surrendered to an animal welfare organization. Sometimes a pet is given up for hardship reasons such as displacement after a natural disaster or home foreclosure. But one of the biggest and more controllable factors affecting pet relinquishment is a lack of knowledge on the owner’s part. The good news is pet relinquishment is often preventable through education. Potential pet adopters who truly evaluate their situations and get answers to important questions before bringing pets into their homes can increase their chances of a permanent pet adoption. Adopt-A-Pet.com is North America’s largest non-profit pet adoption Web site, with more than 5,766 public and private animal welfare organizations posting information on adoptable pets. Their vast resource of shelter and rescue organizations provides thousands of pets with loving homes each year. These organizations serve as local experts to anyone in search of the perfect furry friend. Recently, Purina Pets for Pet People surveyed more than 180 Adopt-A-Pet animal welfare organizations nationwide to develop a “Permanent Pet Adoption” checklist of the Top 10 most important things pet adopters should consider to ensure they have a successful adoption experience. Making a lifetime commitment is key
According to the survey, the number one thing a prospective pet owner should consider to ensure a permanent adoption is whether they’re ready to make a real commitment to care for the new pet for its entire life, just as they would with a child. Another important factor to consider is that a pet affects other parts of their lives, such as housing and travel, for as long as they have the pet, up to 15 years for dogs and 20 years for cats. More tips from the “Permanent Pet Adoption” checklist can be found at Adopt-A-Pet.com. Victoria Stilwell, a respected dog trainer, author and host of the television pro-
MAY • 2009
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gram “It’s Me or the Dog,” believes that potential pet owners need to ask the right questions prior to adopting, so they are prepared for the rewards and challenges that come with pet ownership. “Education prior to adoption is one of the best ways to reduce the number of pets surrendered by their owners,” says Stilwell. “Prospective pet owners need to clearly understand how a pet will fit into their lives for the long term, and whether or not it’s a good fit before they adopt. It’s my goal to keep as many deserving dogs and cats in forever homes as possible, and it starts with proper education.”
Deserving of a permanent home
The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) estimates that 5 to 7 million pets enter shelters every year. They are not typically bad pets, but often victims of unfortunate circumstances or a lack of education on the part of their former owners. The solution for keeping pets in forever homes lies in education, and the “Permanent Pet Adoption” checklist can be a valuable resource for potential pet adopters. The National Council on Pet Population Study and Policy cites proactive educational efforts as essential to reducing the number of pets that are relinquished to shelters and rescue organizations. “Selfless animal welfare organization workers are extremely knowledgeable on the pets in their care,” says Brenda Bax of Purina Pets for People. “Whether they’re mixed or breed-specific organizations, they can offer advice, resources and valuable information to anyone interested in adopting a dog or cat.
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