High-fat, high-carb meals more harmful to obese
December 28, 2007 02:31 PM - Reuters

By Anne Harding NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Eating a high-fat, high-carb fast food meal produces damaging cellular changes that are greater and longer-lasting in obese people than in normal-weight people, a new study shows. Dr. Paresh Dandona and colleagues from Kaleida Health in Buffalo, New York looked at inflammation and oxidative stress, which occurs when levels of normal byproducts of metabolism known as free radicals exceed the body's ability to neutralize them. In previous research they found that obese individuals have higher levels of oxidative stress and inflammation than normal-weight individuals. They also demonstrated that eating a high-fat, high-carb meal increased oxidative stress and inflammation in normal-weight people. !ADVERTISEMENT! To test whether these increases might be greater in obese people, Dandona and his team had 10 normal-weight and 8 obese people eat a 1,800-calorie meal consisting of a large hamburger, a large serving of fries, a large cola, and a slice of apple pie. Both groups showed increases in oxidative stress two hours after eating the meal. By three hours, oxidative stress had returned to baseline levels in the normal-weight individuals, but it continued to climb in the obese individuals. The same pattern was seen for inflammation.

Testosterone patch has benefits in aging men
December 28, 2007 01:46 PM - Reuters

"Though use of testosterone therapy as a means of defying the aging process is gaining popularity, data from scientific trials have been very limited in this area," study chief Dr. Carolyn Allan, from Prince Henry's Institute in Victoria, Australia, said in a statement.

WHO confirms first human bird flu case in Pakistan
December 28, 2007 09:14 AM - Reuters

Corrects headline, first and seventh paragraph to make clear the WHO did not formally confirm a human-to-human birdflu case in Pakistan, just a human case of H5N1 infection. Also updates death toll in last paragraph. GENEVA (Reuters) - The World Health Organization (WHO) said on Thursday it had established a single case of human infection of the H5N1 bird flu virus in a sick family in Pakistan but there was no apparent risk of it spreading further.

Survey: Green Takes Strong Hold with Architects, Designers
December 27, 2007 04:06 PM - Glen Hasek, Green Lodging News

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Autodesk, Inc. and the American Institute of Architects (AIA) recently announced the results of the 2007 Autodesk/AIA Green Index, an annual survey that measures how AIA member architects in the United States are practicing sustainable design, as well as their opinions about the green building movement. The index shows that green building has taken a firm hold on the industry and has captured the attention of both architects and their clients.

Traditional medicine plants disappearing as demand rises
December 27, 2007 03:22 PM - Carol Campbell, SciDevNet

Johannesburg - A dwindling supply of wild medicinal plants is threatening South Africa's traditional medicine industry, according to new research. In a paper published by the nongovernmental organisation Health Systems Trust this month, researchers found that the demand for traditional medicine is higher than ever — stimulated by HIV/AIDS, unemployment and rapid urbanisation.

EPA, Dow Chemical Negotiate River Cleanups
December 27, 2007 03:06 PM - Paul Schaefer, ENN

CHICAGO - U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 5 today extended a deadline with Dow Chemical to negotiate a settlement to conduct and finance an investigation, a study and interim cleanup actions for dioxin contamination in the Tittabawassee River system. In October the EPA called for negotiations under provisions of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act, or Superfund.

Cholesterol fine-tunes hearing
December 27, 2007 02:04 PM - Baylor University Newswire

HOUSTON - Levels of cholesterol in the membranes of hair cells in the inner ear can affect your hearing, said a consortium of researchers from Baylor College of Medicine, Rice University and Purdue University in a report in today's print edition of The Journal of Biological Chemistry.

Deep-Ocean Drilling Researchers Target Earthquake and Tsunami Zone
December 27, 2007 01:48 PM - National Science Foundation

San Francisco — Researchers fresh from an eight-week scientific drilling expedition off the Pacific coast of Japan today reported their discovery of strong variation in the tectonic stresses in a region notorious for generating devastating earthquakes and tsunamis, the Nankai Trough. The scientists conducted their expedition aboard the new scientific drilling vessel Chikyu, drilling deep into the zone responsible for past and likely future tsunamis, and collecting physical measurements and images made using advanced borehole logging technology.

Menopausal hot flashes worse for heavier women
December 27, 2007 01:36 PM - Reuters

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Contrary to expectations, the higher a woman's percentage of body fat at menopause, the more likely she is to experience symptoms such as hot flashes and night sweats, a new study shows. Such so-called "vasomotor symptoms" had previously been thought to be less common in heavier women at menopause, because body fat can convert male hormones into estrogen, Dr. Rebecca C. Thurston of the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and colleagues note. Fatter women would therefore have a reserve source of estrogen that could shield them from these symptoms.

More young diabetics being hospitalized
December 27, 2007 01:34 PM - Reuters

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - There has been a significant increase in the number of young adults hospitalized with diabetes-related conditions in the United States over the last decade or so, according to a new study. "Studies indicate that the burden of diabetes, type 1 and type 2, is substantial and rising among U.S. children," Dr. Joyce Lee, of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and colleagues write in the medical journal Diabetes Care. "We wished to evaluate national trends in hospitalizations associated with diabetes for children and young adults." The researchers found a 38 percent increase from 1993 to 2004 in the number of hospital stays for people between the ages of 0 and 29 years with a diabetes diagnosis. The trend seemed to be age-dependent. There were significant increases in annual hospitalization rates among patients aged 20 to 29 years, but not among younger subjects.

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