Round-Up of Global News In Health and Complementary Medicine
News Beginning Wk 8 Oct 2001
Energy Drinks Bad News For Teeth
High energy drinks have been heavily criticised this week by leading dentists. In their report published this week, people that face the most risk to their teeth are those that indulge in a liquid energy drink straight after a workout. Heavy exercise can dry out protective saliva in the mouth, leaving teeth more vulnerable to the acids in sugary drinks. A study of 96 soft drinks carried out at Dundee University found that high-energy drink Red Bull was most likely to cause ‘acid attacks’. The British Dental Association has published figures revealing that 60 per cent of children now show distinct evidence of erosion of their teeth. Figures which should worry all of us.
We should all know of the health risks of fast food but now it appears that takeaway food is even more unhealthy for us. In a report published this week in The Health Which? magazine, from the Consumers’ Association, an analysis is revealed of the saturated fat, sugar and salt content of typical meals from Chinese, Indian, Thai and Tex-Mex menus. Chinese food is the most popular form of takeaway, with one in three people saying they had eaten it in the past three months. However, dishes such as sweet and sour pork with egg-fried rice were found to be the unhealthiest takeaway option, containing 60g of fat and 1330 calories. The recommended daily fat allowance for a woman is just 70g. Popular Indian dishes such as chicken tikka massala with pilau rice contains 47g of fat, and Tex-Mex chicken enchiladas typically have around 40g of fat. The Health Which?’s advice is simple but very important: if you want to reduce your fat intake, and still enjoy the odd takeaway, choose plain rice, stir-fried or steamed food.
Big Name Diets A No-No
Forget those celebrity diets, we are warned; they do more harm than good. Those rapid weight-loss diets based on eating high protein and low carbohydrate foods ‘pose potential health threats’ and may be ineffective in the long term. A study by the American Heart Association shows that the diet recommended by the likes of Geri Halliwell and Jennifer Anniston may increase the risk of heart disease. It has found that the diet tends to be high in fat, but missing many vital vitamins and minerals. A report in the association’s journal, Circulation, has also raised questions about the health benefits of such regimes as the Atkins Zone, Protein Power, and Stillman diet. The co-author of the report Dr Robert Eckel warned that most people in America and Britain already eat too much protein, and said a balanced diet combined with exercise was still the most effective way to lose weight. Losing weight effectively and healthily requires careful planning and an emphasis on lifestyle changes not on dieting.
The Daily Telegraph
AA Inundated By Women
Women it seems have caught up with men in the alcohol abuse stakes, and in many cases surpassed them. This is the frightening news announced this week. Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) revealed today that more women than men are seeking help to deal with drink problems. A survey of 2163 calls to the AA’s London office between March and August this year showed that just over half were from women. A spokesperson from the London helpline said: ‘We have also notice that people needing our help are much younger, and there are a lot more women.’ The organisation revealed that 50.2 per cent of callers were female, a third were aged 35 or under, and eight per cent were 25 or younger. The AA also warned that the trend might spread. London tends to set precedence; what happens there usually spreads to the regions shortly after.
The Daily Telegraph,
The Internet Is Bad For Kids
If you want your child to learn at school then carefully monitor the extent of their Internet use. So warns a leading psychologist. Reader in psychology at the University of the West of England in Bristol, Dr Susan Blackmore, announced this week that education would be undermined by the vast array of unregulated information on the Internet. Dr Blackmore, in a debate at the Royal Institution in London, predicted that rapid technological advancements would mean so much information being available at the touch of a button that people would no longer need to gain knowledge by storing information in their own memories. Backing the pro-Internet stance held by other academics during the debate is evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins. Professor Dawkins said the Internet’s power to make information instantly available to millions of people at marginal cost meant it heralded the ‘most radical shift in educational epidemiology’ since the invention of the printing press, ‘and probably since the origin of the language itself’. The debate is likely to go on and on and……..
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