Round-Up of Global News In Health and Complementary Medicine

Monthly Archive

News Beginning Wk 6 Aug 2001

The British Overlook Travel Advice

A latest survey published this week shows the extent to which UK travellers are ignoring the travel health advice of experts – up to 80% of holidaymakers who fall sick whilst away. Thirty percent of travellers to ‘at risk’ areas seeks no advice about vaccinations, half ignore ‘basic health’ advice, half have ice in their drinks, 45 per cent use tap water to clean their teeth, and 28 per cent buy food from street stalls. A blasé attitude increases the risk of contracting malaria, typhoid, yellow fever, rabies and hepatitis as well as less serious conditions such as an upset stomach. A spokesman for the British Travel Health Association said: ‘Nobody thinks it will happen to them, but it does.’

The Daily Telegraph

Shock News Of Pesticides In French Veg

The latest European survey of pesticides in produce has embarrassed the French – up to 50% of their fruit and veg was shown to have pesticide residues. About 8 per cent of these showed potentially dangerous levels of the chemical residue. In the past, France has claimed to be a leader in natural food production in Europe, but it ranked very poorly on the survey, scoring better than only two countries, the Netherlands and Austria. France is the world’s second largest agricultural exporter and the second largest user of pesticides in the world, after the US. The survey noted a steady increase in pesticide residues in Europe, with 4.3 per cent of all samples showing dangerous levels in 1999, up from 3.3 per cent in 1998.

The Independent

How Ladies Detest Their Bodies

If you are a UK woman you will probably already know this. But a survey has now shown the extent to which women loathe their bodies – up to 90% of you!! Furthermore more than two-thirds of women are willing to undergo plastic surgery to put themselves right according to The Female Body Survey of Great Britain 2001, by beauty magazine Top Santé.

The figures were collated after 3000 women, with an average age of 38, were questioned about their shape, size and attitudes towards cosmetic surgery and ageing. The survey also discovered that 85 per cent were unhappy with their shape and 90 per cent felt society discriminated against overweight people. At the top of the list for surgery procedures was liposuction with 55 per cent of women saying they would have it. Forty-seven per cent opted for a tummy tuck and 21 per cent for breast enhancement. Almost half the women questioned were unhappy with their breasts and 39 per cent thought that bigger breasts would improve their love life.

Daily Mail

The Placebo: So That’s How It Works!!

A study of brain action in patients with Parkinson Diseases has provided an insight into the action of placebos; and it now seems they are not all in the mind as many would claim. The brains of Parkinson’s patients produce insufficient dopamine, which facilitates communication between nerve cells. Drug therapy is designed to replace it. The Canadian team studied brain scans from patients when they received pills containing the drug and when they received a placebo. A placebo resembles a normal pill but contains no active substances. The team found that the placebo produced measurable changes in dopamine production. Team leader Dr Jon Stoessl believes the effect may be attributable to the patients’ expectations. Because only one pill in four was a placebo, the patients had come to associate taking it with an improvement in their symptoms. This meant that when a placebo was taken a similar effect resulted. The study is thought to be the first to look at physiological changes in the body as a result of taking placebos.

The Daily Telegraph

Raising UK Babes On Organic

We always want the best for our offspring in Britain. And when it comes to feeding our little ones we know where our bread’s buttered. According to the Soil Association the number of babies being fed organic food is on the rise – and how!!! The Association’s research shows that over a third of infants in this country are being raised on organic food, with the figure rising to over 50 per cent in wealthier areas of the country. The SA recently published a review of 400 scientific studies comparing conventional and organic food, concluding that there was a large body of evidence indicating that the latter was ‘safer and better’. An SA nutritionist, Shane Heaton, explained that about 450 pesticides are permitted in the production of conventional food, at least five of which can be traced in traditional baby food. In comparison, a mere seven pesticides are allowed when growing organic produce. He said: ‘What we are seeing is customers voting with their feet. Organic baby food is one of the fastest growing areas.’ Waitrose confirmed this claim: sales of organic meals now account for 83 per cent of baby food sales, up from 65 per cent last year.

Financial Times


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