Round-Up of Global News In Health and Complementary Medicine

Monthly Archive

WEEK BEGINNING 22 January 2001

Pop Star Boosts Your Brain, They Say

Teen pop sensation Britney Spears could help your children with their schoolwork, according to a new study. Researchers found that catchy tunes invigorate pupils at the beginning of the day, making them more receptive in the classroom. Katrina Bowes and her colleagues at Strathclyde University also tried other musical greats like Robbie Williams, Kylie Minogue, and J.S. Bach. All had varying effects on academic performance. ‘We have encouraged many teachers to try this out in their classes and all have come back talking about a huge improvement in the concentration levels of their class,’ she said. Eminem will not make the primary school play list, however – rap music was found to have no beneficial effects.

Daily Mail

Midnight Working Harms

Researchers in France have found that night workers face greater health risks than day staff because they burn fewer calories at night. People who work during the night are twice as likely to have a heart attack and could gain an average of two calories a year. The danger is worse for women because of differences in the body’s metabolism. The study found that female nurses working night shifts put on an average of 11lbs over 10 years. This was twice as much as men. But Dr Monique Romon, who led the study, warned that workers should not starve themselves at night. ‘You need a sandwich. But choose one with a chicken filling rather than fatty delicacies,’ he said.

Daily Express

Viagra’s Natural Alternative

The Advertising Standards Authority dismissed claims by Good Health International that their product called Natura-Viga was an herbal alternative to Viagra. The company was ordered to drop claims that Natura-Viga boosted "sexual performance, vigour and vitality." They also admitted that they that breached the Advertising Standards Authority’s rules.

Daily Mail

Cancer Linked To Airports

People who live within a five mile radius of a major airport may have an increased risk of cancer, according to a report by the pressure group Transport 2000. Report author, Professor John Whitelegg said: ‘There is an increased risk of cancer and asthma near airports, partly due to extra pollution from burning fuels. Also, loud noises can cause blood pressure to rise, which can provoke heart attacks.’ American researchers have linked toxic gases produced by aircraft at Chicago-Midway airport to a higher incidence of cancer among people living in the vicinity of the airport.

Daily Express

For more go to Cancer


High Blood Pressure

When Your Head Really Is Swimming

Scientists at Bristol University have found that drinking water at the wrong time can impair mental performance. But those who are genuinely dehydrated can benefit from drinking tap water before undertaking activities, particularly those requiring a fast reaction time.

Sixty volunteers drank either nothing or a cup of chilled water before having their mental performance measured with a standard computer test. Those who drank when they were not thirsty recorded scores 15 per cent lower than those who drank nothing. Those who were thirsty however, performed 10 per cent better if they had a drink.

The study concluded that too much water can affect the ability of people to carry out mentally demanding tasks.

The Daily Telegraph

Big Babes Beat All In Brainpower Stakes

Following published research this week, scientists have revealed that babies born underweight are less intelligent. The study in the British Medical Journal is the first to compare the scores of cognitive tests of normal birth weight babies with those who are below average. The authors of the study, Dr Marcus Richards and colleagues based at University College London, investigated the birth weight, cognitive test scores and educational performance of 3900 men and women born in one week of March in 1946.

The subjects were tested at age eight, 11, 15, 26 and 43. They were split into five birth weight groups, ranging from under 5.5lbs to 10.1lbs. For all ages, except age 43, researchers found an increased birth weight was associated with improved cognition. However, when tested at age 43 they found no significant difference in test scores. When studying the results, factors such as sex, social class and mother’s age were taken into account. Although factors known to affect babies birth weight were not studied to see if they affected cognitive scores, these include nutrition, smoking and alcohol abuse. Researchers found that the most crucial age for cognitive and mental development was between birth and eight. Dr Richards said: ‘It seems clear that birth weight has an influence on cognitive function’.

Daily Express

Stop Smoking If You’re Pregnant

Yvette Cooper, the Public Health minister unveiled a �million program yesterday, that aims to cut smoking amongst pregnant women significantly. Figures show that 24 per cent of women admit to smoking during pregnancy, this amounts to about 55,000 a year. The money will be distributed to 101 health authorities, where it will be used by an appointed counsellor to provide one-to-one sessions for women who are mothers-to-be. In addition, group sessions will be set up for those pregnant women who feel stigmatised by non-smokers mothers-to-be but are too addicted to stop. Women who smoke during pregnancy are more likely to give birth to babies of low birth weight, are more likely to miscarry and have a 30 per cent increased risk of stillbirth.

The Independent

For more go to Pregnancy

Natural Pregnancy Spa Programme

Dog Ends Increasing

Smoking is on the increase for the first time in 25 years. The rise is being blamed on Labour's increasing taxes on cigarettes, creating a black market worth �illion. There has also been an explosion of cheap illegal imports, also believed to have encouraged people to take up the habit. The rise is more noticeable amongst the younger generations as gangs target schools. In some cases gangs are rejecting drug trafficking in favour of cigarettes because the profits are higher. However, Customs has seen an increase in the number of ordinary people importing cheap cigarettes from EU countries. In a bid to reduce this current trend the Government has given Customs �9million to fight the smugglers. The Tobacco Manufacturers’ Association blames the governments tax policy and has suggested a reduction by �in tax on a packet of cigarettes would remove the illegal trade and reduce consumption.

Daily Mail

For more go to Smoking Cessation Q&A

Rice’s Genetic Secrets Revealed

The complete rice genome map was announced yesterday by the Torrey Mesa Research Institute, part of the company Syngenta, and Myriad Genetics Inc in America. With 50,000 different genes, written in about 430 million ‘letters’ of DNA, the rice genome mapping is the second largest genome to be sequenced to date, after that of humans.

It is considered that three billion people each day rely on rice as their staple food. It is vital that production does not fail. Plants breeders can now use the information from the genome to produce better and stronger varieties of rice. For example scientists could create a variety of rice that is rich in vitamin A. A lack of vitamin A can cause to blindness and causes up to a million deaths a year in developing countries. Biotechnologists will be able to identify and transfer individual genes from one variety to another so that GM rice can be made within seven years, which will add fuel to the GM food debate.

The International Rice Genome Sequencing project aims to produce a more detailed genetic sequence by 2005.

The Daily Telegraph, Daily Mail

For more go to Healthy Nutrition series


Monthly Archive

Privacy Statement | Terms & Conditions | Telephone: 020 7243 1968 | Email:
Url: | Designed & Developed by SP Internet Consultancy Ltd

Home | Search | Ailments | Treatments | Practitioners | Health News | Focus | Doctor File | Q & A | Features
Health Spa | Support Groups | About Us | Barefoot Doctor | Events | E-zine | Shop | E-card