Round-Up of Global News In Health and Complementary Medicine

Monthly Archive

Week Beginning 17 December 2001

Birth Phobias

Modern medicine and midwifery have made childbirth safer than ever before. However, for a number of women there remains a distinct fear. That is according to new research. It is believed that as many as 20% of women suffer from the so-called tokophobia. Sufferers avoid pregnancy at all costs and if by the remote chance they do so may very readily resort to inducing miscarriage. The reasons such women give for their actions? The fear of pain, potential death (which remains extremely rare) and psychological disorder which may be associated with pregnancy and birth.

The Daily Mail

Boost Your Performance By Relaxing

We all remember those occasions. When the sporting favourites choke their performance and unexpectedly lose to the underdog. Now psychology researchers at the Michigan State University believe they have pinpointed the reason. The favourites are trying far too hard. Instead, the researchers suggest, they should relax more. And by doing so their performance will fulfil its potential. They go on to say that we can use this strategy in our own lives. By concentrating and trying too hard we blight our chances of success in an activity. We should learn to relax when the pressure is on.

The Times

A Little Tipple Could Prevent Strokes

Good news for those who like a little tipple this week. According to the Stroke Association a moderate amount of alcohol – for instance, a small glass or two of wine each day – may protect against one type of stroke, ischaemic stroke. Ischaemic stroke occurs as the result of blood clots becoming trapped in blood vessels in the brain. Alcohol "thins" the blood, therefore reducing the risk of clots.

The Times

Fathers, Pregnancy Makes You Fat!

New dads beware – while your partners are pregnant you are more likely to add on the pounds as well. Are the chaps coming out in sympathy with their suffering other halves? Probably not according to the research team at Flinders Medical Centre in Adelaide, Australia. In their study the team found that first-time partners were likely to put on as much as 2kg. The reason is not what we might expect. It was generally found that during the pregnancy men’s stress levels rose significantly and they tended to resort to food to overcome their anxieties.

The Daily Mail

Heart Disease Predicted By Fat Hormone

Leptin, a hormone produced by fat cells, has been discovered to indicate the risk of a heart attack. The more fat you have the greater the levels of leptin circulating in your body. Scottish medical researchers, based at the Glasgow Royal Infirmary, found in a study of men that those with heart disease had raised leptin levels in their blood. Now they conclude that a quick blood test to measure leptin levels could be used in conjunction with blood pressure measurements and blood cholesterol levels to reliably predict the onset of heart disease in an individual and therefore put in place preventative measures as early as possible.

The Daily Express


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