Health

Most caregivers of young children lack basic knowledge of potentially toxic household products
May 30, 2008 08:07 AM - Wiley-Blackwell

According to a new study, knowledge of potentially toxic household substances among primary caregivers for young children is alarmingly poor. The results show that less than one-third of primary caregivers for children under the age of six could correctly estimate the toxicity of household poisons. The study is being presented at the Society for Academic Emergency Medicine’s 2008 Annual Meeting.

Experts Admit Food Prices & Mass Hunger for the Poor Will Continue for Next Decade
May 29, 2008 09:09 AM - , Organic Consumers Association

The UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) noted in a press release from yesterday that, "The latest Food Outlook indicates that the food import bill of the Low Income Food Deficit Countries (LIFDCs) is expected to reach US$169 billion in 2008, 40 percent more than in 2007. FAO calls the sustained rise in imported food expenditures for vulnerable country groups 'a worrying development,' and says that by the end of 2008 their annual food import basket could cost four times as much as it did in 2000.

In Vitro Meat, a More Humane Treat
May 27, 2008 07:49 AM - , Global Policy Innovations Program

The ongoing world food crisis has incited riots and protests in more than ten countries over the past several months. In Haiti, seven people were killed in riots that led to the ouster of Prime Minister Jacques Edouard Alexis. Egypt's President Mubarak enlisted the army to produce and distribute bread after several people were killed in bakery clashes. Drought, a declining dollar, and a shift of investment money into commodities have all contributed to bare shelves and empty bellies.

Cocoa Could Be A Healthy Treat For Diabetic Patients
May 27, 2008 07:45 AM - American College of Cardiology

For people with diabetes, sipping a mug of steaming, flavorful cocoa may seem a guilty pleasure. But new research suggests that indulging a craving for cocoa can actually help blood vessels to function better and might soon be considered part of a healthy diet for the prevention of cardiovascular disease. Flavanols, natural plant compounds also found in tea, red wine, and certain fruits and vegetables, are responsible for cocoa's healthful benefits. In fact, according to new research.

Market and Community Approaches to Food Crisis
May 26, 2008 09:12 AM - , Global Policy Innovations Program

The first quarter of this year saw food prices skyrocket, with the World Bank recording a 75 percent increase in its food price index since September 2006. The challenges for policymakers, however, extend beyond the current crisis. Since early 2002, food prices have risen by 140 percent, with the effect falling disproportionately on the poor. Meanwhile, a third of food bought in the United Kingdom is thrown away. There are fundamental problems of distribution and price stability that governments and NGOs must address if we are to repair food production and avoid further crises.

Nonstick Toxicity
May 23, 2008 08:13 AM - , Organic Consumers Association

Chemical promotes cancer development in fish The experiments were fishy. But they appear to have uncovered something that rodent studies missed: a potential cancer risk posed by a compound used to manufacture nonstick coatings. By mimicking the action of estrogen, this chemical, perfluorooctanoic acid, can promote cancer development, researchers report in an upcoming Environmental Health Perspectives.

Group says Herbalife products have too much lead
May 20, 2008 07:52 AM - Reuters

Six dietary supplements sold by Herbalife Ltd contain dangerous amounts of lead if taken in the recommended dosages, according to information posted on Monday on a Web site linked to a long-time critic of the firm. Herbalife disputed the claim, saying its weight-loss and nutritional products met regulatory requirements in all of its markets.

For an All-Organic Formula, Baby, That’s Sweet
May 19, 2008 08:43 AM - Julia Moskin, The New York Times

Amy Chase started feeding Similac Organic infant formula to her second son, Amos, as soon as he was born in November 2006. “When I saw the organic at Publix, I bought it, no questions asked,” said Ms. Chase, a self-described “yoga mom” in Atlanta.

Carbon monoxide aids shift from active infection to a drug-resistant dormant TB infection
May 13, 2008 09:04 AM - University of Alabama at Birmingham

A toxic gas present in air pollution and tobacco smoke plays a significant role in triggering tuberculosis infection, according to a new study from researchers at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). The UAB study focused on carbon monoxide (CO), a colorless, odorless gas present in tobacco smoke, and vehicle and manufacturing plant emissions. Also, CO is produced naturally in brushfires and volcanic gas.

WHO urged to back radical changes in drug R&D
May 12, 2008 08:41 AM - , SciDevNet

An international group of prominent academics — including several Nobel prize winners — has urged WHO member states to support radically new ways to address the lack of research into diseases that affect the poor. In particular, they are seeking a sizeable increase in government support for research into these diseases through an international research and development (R&D) fund, and alternatives to the financial incentives of patents.

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