Thursday, December 25, 2008

Apples and Health

 Apples and Health
Apples may help reduce cholesterol

By Peggy Trowbridge Filippone,

There is a lot of truth in the old adage, "An apple a day keeps the doctor away."

Apples are rich in pectin, a soluble fiber that has been shown to reduce cholesterol. This pectin also appears to target "bad" cholesterol (LDL) according to recent tests. Eating two apples per day has dropped cholesterol levels in test subject humans by up to 16 percent.

Apples are also good for diabetics as the soluble fiber assists in regulating blood sugar, preventing a sudden increase or drop in serum sugar levels.

Medical studies in health benefits show that a number of components in apples, especially fiber, phytonutrients, and antixoidant flavonoids, have been found to lower blood cholesterol, improve bowel function, and reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, prostate cancer, type II diabetes, lung disease, asthma, and age-related memory loss.

Apples are full of vitamins and minerals. There is no significant variation in the numbers between the different varieties. To get the greatest nutritional benefits, enjoy your apple unpeeled--that's where two-thirds of the fiber and many of the antioxidants are located.

One medium-sized raw, cored, unpeeled apple has only 80 calories

The Americans have a long way to go, however, to meet the "apple-a-day" recommendation. The average U.S. consumer eats just over 19 pounds of fresh apples a year, or about one apple per week, compared to Europeans, who ingest an average of 46 pounds per year. It's time for Americans to take that one-apple-a-day dietary recommendation more seriously.
In Malaysia and others Asian countries apples are considered quite expensive. Not everyone can afford to buy or to have it everyday. But luckly they can replace it with local fruits such as pineapple or guava. In India apples are the most expensive fruit.

Apple Nutrition Facts

· Apples don't have fat, cholesterol or sodium, which may help you maintain heart health and a healthy weight.

· Apples do have lots of fiber - both soluble and insoluble kinds. Fiber may help promote heart health and maintain regularity.

· Apples contain small amounts of potassium, which may promote heart health and help maintain healthy blood pressure.

· Apples rich in many essential vitamins and minerals, including calcium, phosphorus, iron, sodium, potassium, vitamin C, vitamin A, and folate.

Fun Apple Facts
  • Apples are a member of the rose family.
  • Archeologists have found evidence that humans have been enjoying apples since at least 6500 B.C.
  • Hippocrates, the Greek physician considered the father of medicine, was a proponent of nutritional healing. His favorite remedies were apples, dates, and barley mush.
  • Although apples are now considered as American as apple pie, they weren't native to this country. Apples were brought here by the Pilgrims, who found North America's native apple species--crabapples--to be inedible.
  • In colonial times, apples were called "winter banana" or "melt-in-the-mouth."
  • Why do apples float? Because 25% of an apple's volume is air.
  • It takes the energy of 50 leaves to produce just one apple.
  • The whole process of digesting a raw apple takes only 85 minutes, which makes an apple one of the easiest vegetable substances for the stomach to deal with.
  • China is the world's largest apples producer. The United States came second.
  • Approximately one out of every four apples harvested in the United States is exported.
  • Apples have long been associated with love and marriage. In ancient Greece, an apple constituted a marriage proposal. A man would toss an apple to his beloved, and if she caught it, it meant she had accepted his offer. An Irish and Scottish custom called for throwing an apple peel over your shoulder, which, when it landed, would form the initial of your lover's name. Even the tradition of throwing rice (or now, birdseed) at a wedding is rooted in an ancient practice in which apples were thrown at the newlyweds. Rice and birdseed probably result in a lot less bruising...on both the apples and the bridal couple.
  • Apples were one of the foods selected for the first space flight around Earth.
Source: © 2008 Frontier Natural Products Co-op. &   ©2008, a part of The New York Times Company

Eggs in a Healthy Diet

Eggs in a Healthy Diet

By Shereen Jegtvig, Guide to Nutrition since 2004
Thursday October 2, 2008

Eggs were taken off of many people's diet food lists because they contain a lot of cholesterol. That's unfortunate, because eggs also contain lots of important nutrients. Actually, there are plenty of studies showing that eating one egg each day will not raise your cholesterol or lower your HDL, so almost everyone can enjoy eggs as part of a healthy diet.
Eggs are one of nature's near-perfect foods. They contain an easily digestible form of protein, plus loads of other valuable compounds and nutrients. With rare exceptions, there isn't any reason to avoid them, despite what you may have heard.

The reasons dietitians and traditional medical experts have recommended avoiding eggs in the past is because of two substances in eggs that continue to suffer from a terrible reputation: cholesterol and fat. Fat is a subject worth a column all its own, so we'll save that for another time. Right now, let's look closely at cholesterol.

Cholesterol is crucial for every cell in the body, and around 80 percent of cholesterol in the body is produced by the body itself, regardless of how much of it you eat or don't eat.

Most of your body's cholesterol is found within the cells, where it has all kinds of positive effects. Only about 7 percent of the body's store of cholesterol is in the blood, and even then it doesn't do any real damage until it oxidises and begins to stick to our arterial walls. Nature, in her infinite wisdom, also created the egg complete with its own built-in antioxidant. It's called lecithin, and it helps prevent egg cholesterol from becoming a problem. Interestingly, lecithin is found in the yolk, which many people mistakenly discard because it contains cholesterol.

The real point is this: Dietary cholesterol has virtually no effect on serum cholesterol (in our blood). Even Dr. Ancel Keys, author of the famous 'Seven Countries' study that gave rise to the whole fat/cholesterol/heart disease madness in the first place, has said: 'There's no connection whatsoever between cholesterol in food and cholesterol in the bloo d. None. And we've known that all along.'

The points is whatever you take in your diet, you need to do some exercise to maintain your health.

Source: © 2008, a part of The New York Times Company.

© iVillage Limited 2000-2008. All rights reserved.

Yoghurt can benefit bladder cancer

Yoghurt can benefit bladder cancer, say researchers
By Shane Starling, 21-Oct-2008
Related topics: Phytochemicals, plant extracts, Probiotics and prebiotics, Cancer risk reduction, Probiotics

Two servings of yoghurt per day can reduce the risk of developing bladder cancer by up to 40 per cent, say Swedish scientists.

The researchers from the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm concluded those that consumed two yoghurt pots or yoghurt mini drinks were less likely to develop bladder cancer than those that ate no or little yoghurt.

The study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, assessed 82,000 patients over nine years. Participants that had eaten yoghurt were more likely to remain cancer-free than those that hadn?t.

They found yoghurt consumption reduced the risk of cancer in men by 36 per cent and in women by 45 per cent. Other dairy products did not reveal such benefits and the researchers suggested this was down to the inherent functional ity present in many yoghurts and not just those with boosted probiotic levels.

"Cultured milk products, such as yoghurt, contain lactic acid bacteria, which have been shown to suppress bladder cancer in rats," said the researchers. "Our research suggests a high intake may reduce the risk."
?Total dairy intake was not significantly associated with risk of bladder cancer. However, a statistically significant inverse association was observed for the intake of cultured milk (sour milk and yoghurt).?

Healthy lifestyle
The researchers noted people that regularly ate yoghurt were more likely to value and pursue a healthy lifestyle and therefore be less likely to suffer from diseases such as bladder cancer.

The bladder cancer rates in the study may have been co-implicated with other factors such as the fact half of all cases of bladder cancer in men and a third of those in women are caused by smoking.
Around 10,000 people in Britain are diagnosed each year with the cancer that can spread to other parts of the body if it is goes undetected. The annual death rate is about 5000.

Globally, about 336,000 people are diagnosed with bladder cancer, according to the European School of Oncology. It is three times more likely to affect men than women.

Although at 82,000, the sample was large, there are some that question the value of studies based on dietary questionnaires because accurate responses cannot be guaranteed. People forget or are expedient with their responses to conceal dietary waywardness.

Other foods known to benefit bladder health are cruciferous vegetables. Researchers writing in the journal, Cancer Epidemiology Biomarkers & Prevention, found earlier this year that consuming raw cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli could slash the risk of bladder cancer by 36 per cent.

But only raw vegetables carried the benefit, they wrote.
"We found that only intake of raw cruciferous vegetables, but not cooked, fruit or other vegetables, showed a strong and statistically significant inverse association with bladder cancer risk."

That study, published in April, built on a study published earlier in the year that claimed to be the first epidemiological study linking isothiocyanates from cruciferous vegetable to a reduced risk of bladder cancer.

Source: American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 2008 88: Pp 1083-1087
"Cultured milk, yogurt, and dairy intake in relation to bladder cancer risk in a prospective study of Swedish women and men"
Authors: Susanna C Larsson, Swen-Olof Andersson, Jan-Erik Johansson and Alicja Wolk

Magnesium for a brain boost

Keep your mind sharp with magnesium. Research shows that this mineral helps regulate a key brain receptor that plays an important role in learning and memory. Experts believe that magnesium deficiency may result in reduced ability to learn and memorise things, while cognitive function may be improved by an abundance of magnesium.

Take action:

Include at least one portion of a magnesium-rich food, such as green, leafy vegetables or beans in your diet every day. Make sure that you also include calcium-rich foods, such as milk, yoghurt or cheese, in your diet - or else the magnesium won't be absorbed.
Source © Health24 2000-2008. All rights reserved.

Magnesium-rich foods ward off stroke in smokers
Published: Wednesday, March 26
CHICAGO (Reuters) - Diets rich magnesium, found in whole grains and vegetables, could help reduce stroke risk in smokers, researchers reported on Monday.

Their study of 26,000 male smokers in Finland found that those whose diets were high in magnesium had a significantly lower risk of one type of stroke.

While the mechanism is not clear, it may be that magnesium helps reduce high blood pressure, which can lead to stroke if untreated.

Raw broccoli is an excellent source of magnesium. Diets rich in magnesium, found in whole grains and vegetables, could help reduce stroke risk in smokers, researchers reported on Monday.
Raw broccoli is an excellent source of magnesium. Diets rich in magnesium, found in whole grains and vegetables, could help reduce stroke risk in smokers, researchers reported on Monday.
Susanna Larsson and colleagues at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden, said the stroke finding was an offshoot of a study whose main purpose was to look at possible lung cancer therapies.

Cigarette smoking is strongly linked to stroke and it is the leading cause of heart disease and cancer.
The study of 26,556 Finnish men followed for more than 13 years found that those who consumed an average of 589 milligrams of magnesium each day in their diets had a 15 percent lower risk for cerebral infarction -- a stroke that occurs when blood flow to the brain is blocked -- than those who consumed less magnesium.

The effect was stronger for men younger than 60 and the study also found that calcium, potassium and sodium intake were not associated with risk for any type of stroke, the researchers reported in the Archives of Internal Medicine.

The y said it remains to be seen if taking magnesium dietary supplements would produce the same result.
"In addition to lowering blood pressure, magnesium may influence cholesterol concentrations or the body's use of insulin to turn glucose into energy. Either of these mechanisms would affect the risk for cerebral infarction but not hemorrhage (the cause of other types of strokes)," Larsson's team wrote.
Besides whole grains, foods high in magnesium are black beans, broccoli, halibut, peanuts, oysters, rockfish and spinach.

(Editing by Maggie Fox)
Source © Reuters 2008

Good Fish & Bad Fish

F ish is an excellent source of lean protein and omega-3 fatty acids called eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). A diet rich in fish oil may help reduce inflammation and decrease your risk of cardiovascular disease. The omega-3 fatty acids found in fish are also essential for brain and eye development. The American Heart Association suggests that we each eat at least two servings of oily fish each week to help keep our hearts healthy.

So when is fish not so good for your health?
Almost all fish is contaminated with trace amounts of mercury. While most healthy adults have no problem eliminating the mercury from their bodies, children and women who are pregnant or breastfeeding should avoid some types of fish and shellfish to reduce their risk of mercury exposure.

Fish that contain the highest level of mercury are larger and older sharks, swordfish, king mackerel, and tilefish. It is probably a good idea for most people to avoid eating much of these fish. They can be replaced with other fish and shellfish such as shrimp, pollock, canned light tuna, salmon and catfish, which all contain much less mercury.
Most other fish fall somewhere in between. The United States Environmental Protection Agency has a complete listing of the mercury levels in commercial seafood and fish. It is also interesting to note that deep-frying fish may increase the concentration of mercury in fish.

Besides mercury, fish can be a problem if it isn't prepared properly. Deep fried or served with a heavy, fat- and calorie-dense sauce will turn healthy fish into an unhealthy meal fast.

Another potential problem is eating undercooked fish, which may lead to a parasite infection. When cooking fish at home, make sure you cook your fish until it is flaky and tender; the meat should show no signs of translucency. And do not cross contaminate raw fish with uncooked or ready to serve foods; use separate utensils and plates for handling each.
Other Sources of Omega-3 Fatty Acids
If you are concerned about mercury, or if you just don't want to eat fish, you need to get omega-3 fatty acids from other sources. There ar e many plant sources of omega-3 fatty acids, such as canola oil, flax seeds, walnuts and pumpkin seeds.
The type of omega-3 fatty acids found in plants is called alpha linolenic acid. It is not exactly the same as the fats found in fish, but your body has the capability to transform alpha linolenic acid to both EPA and DHA.
What About Fish Oil Supplements?
Most people can get all of the omega-3 fatty acids they need from their diets, but EPA and DHA are also available as dietary supplements. Many people elect to take these supplements with the hope of reducing inflammation and their risk of cardiovascular disease.

DHA supplementation may be the most beneficial for babies. The developing brain accumulates large amounts of DHA during the third trimester of pregnancy through the first three months of infancy. Women can take DHA supplements during their pregnancy and in the initial months of breastfeeding to be sure their babies receive enough DHA for normal cognitive development.

Burger J, Dixon C, Boring CS, Gochfeld M. "Effect of deep-frying fish on risk from mercury." J Toxicol Environ Health A. 2003 May 9;66(9):817-28.

Cetin I, Koletzko B. "Long-chain omega-3 fatty acid supply in pregnancy and lactation." Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care. 2008 May;11(3):297-302.

FDA/Center for Food Safety & Applied Nutrition. "What You Need to Know About Mercury in Fish and Shellfish." Updated February 2005.[/link]

Source: © 2008, a part of The New York Times Company.

Multivitamins and minerals help children's brain function: study

By Stephen Daniells, 05-Nov-2008

Related topics: Products & Marketing

Daily supplements of multivitamins and minerals may improve the brain function of children, says a new study from British and Australian researchers.

Twelve weeks of supplementation with vitamins and minerals was found to boost the attention scores of children, according to results published in the British Journal of Nutrition.
This represents the first observation of acute behavioural effects of vitamins/minerals in human subjects, wrote the researchers, led by Professor David Kennedy from Northumbria University in Newcastle.
Naturally, these observations require replication in larger cohorts, but they do suggest that this matter should be given some priority,? cautioned the researchers.

Study details

The Newcastle-based researchers, in collaboration with scientists from Swinburne University in Australia, and the University of Westminster in London, recruited 81 children (average age 11) to participate in the randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel groups investigation.
The children were reportedly all healthy and free from food allergy. In addition, none of the children used other dietary supplements during the three months prior to the study. Participants were randomly assigned to daily multivitamin and mineral supplements or placebo for 12 weeks. The study used Pharmaton SAs Pharmaton Kiddi blend of multivitamins and minerals. The Swiss company also provided funding for the study.
Cognitive performance was measured using a battery of laboratory assessments. Measures were taken before the study, after one and three hours after the first dose, and after 12 weeks.

Kennedy and his co-workers report that the children in the vitamin/mineral group performed more accurately on two tests of attention. Indeed, the researchers noted the first signs of improvement only three hours after the first dose on the first day.

The most surprising facet of the improvement in attention task performance seen here is that it became evident by three hours post-dose on the first day, they wrote.

To the best of our knowledge, the possibility that vitamins or minerals could exert behavioural effects after a single dose has not been explored, they added.

However, no effects were observed on measures of the children?s mood, they added.

Science behind the claims?
The researchers noted that the study was aimed at testing the claims of the manufacturer that the multivitamin and mineral could improve the physical development and neural performance of the children.

The combination of vitamins, minerals and amino acids present? in the present study does not allow the results presented to be attributed to any one component, wrote the researchers.

Further work in this area could examine the constituent parts of this treatment in more detail, perhaps focusing on attentional measures and including acute, as well as chronic, assessment, they added.

Source: British Journal of Nutrition
November 2008, Volume 100, Pages 1086-1096, doi:10.1017/S0007114508959213
?Cognitive and mood effects in healthy children during 12 weeks' supplementation with multi-vitamin/minerals?
Authors: C.F. Haskell, A.B. Scholey, P.A. Jackson, J.M. Elliott, M.A. Defeyter, J. Greer, B.C. Robertson, T. Buchanan, B. Tiplady, D.O. Kennedy       

Vitamin E may slash lung cancer risk: Study

Increasing intakes of vitamin E may decrease the risk of lung cancer by over 50 per cent, according to a new study from the US.

Researchers from the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center report that intakes of vitamin E in the alpha-tocopherol form were associated with consistent and independent reductions in lung cancer risk. Other forms of the vitamin did not have any effects on their own, they added.

To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study to compare dietary intakes of the different forms of tocopherols (alpha-, beta-, gamma and delta-tocopherol) and lung cancer risk, wrote lead author Somdat Mahabir in the International Journal of Cancer.
Our large lung cancer case-control study adds meaningful data on alpha-, gamma-, beta- and delta-tocopherol to the literature,

There are eight forms of vitamin E: four tocopherols (alpha, beta, gamma, delta) and four tocotrienols (alpha, beta, gamma, delta). Alpha-tocopherol is the main source found in supplements and in the European diet, while gamma-tocopherol is the most common form in the American diet.

Study details

Mahabir and co-workers report results from an ongoing study involving 1,088 patients with lung cancer (average age 61.7) and 1,414 healthy controls (average age 60.8). Dietary intakes were assessed using a modified version of the 135-item National Cancer Institute?s Health Habits and History Questionnaire Food Frequency Questionnaire. Demographic and lifestyle data were also collected, including smoking habits.

The researchers calculated that the highest average intakes of alpha-tocopherol (more than 7.73 mg per day) were associated with a 53 per cent reduction in lung cancer risk, compared to the lowest average intakes (less than 4.13 mg per day). This result took into account the other forms of tocopherols.

When the researchers accounted for the other tocopherols they observed no significant associations on lung cancer risk for beta-, gamma, and delta-tocopherol.

Considering all the tocopherols together, the highest average intake (more than 12.95 mg per day) was associated with a 55 per cent reduction in the risk of lung cancer, compared to the lowest average intakes (less than 6.68 mg per day), said the researchers.

We found consistent independent associations for increased dietary alpha-tocopherol intake and risk reduction but did not find independent associations for gamma-, beta- and delta-tocopherol in lung cancer risk, wrote Mahabir.

Our data should be useful in stimulating additional epidemiologic and basic science research in the relationship of different forms of vitamin E and cancer.

No mechanistic study was performed by the researchers, and they make no discussion of it in their article.
Lung cancer is the most common form of cancer worldwide with over 1.2 million new cases diagnosed annually, according to the European School of Oncology. It has one of the lowest survival rates with only 25 per cent of patients surviving more than one year after diagnosis (England and Wales).
Volume 123, Pages 1173-1180
International Journal of Cancer. Dietary alpha-, beta-, gamma- and delta-tocopherols in lung cancer risk. Authors: S. Mahabir, K. Schendel, Y.Q. Dong, S.L. Barrera, M.R. Spitz, M.R. Forman         

Ubat Tiruan: Murah tapi Merana

Ubat Tiruan: Murah tapi Merana


GERAM rasanya membaca laporan akhbar mengenai rampasan ubat tiruan yang tidak sudah-sudah. Ada saja pihak tidak bertanggungjawab yang mahu untung cepat tanpa memikirkan risiko bakal dialami pesakit apabila memakan ubat tiruan yang diseludup masuk ke negara ini.

Perniagaan ubat tiruan berlaku di seluruh dunia, termasuk negara kita. Ia merangkumi 10 peratus daripada bekalan ubat dunia yang membabitkan RM70.4 bilion dan dianggarkan akan terus berkembang pada kadar 13 peratus setahun jika tiada usaha mengekangnya.

Apa yang dikatakan ubat tiruan? Ubat tiruan mempunyai bentuk dan warna hampir sama dengan ubat asli tetapi berbeza kandungan bahan aktifnya. Ubat tiruan bukan saja merugikan wang pengguna, bahkan boleh mengancam kesihatan dan nyawa.

Menurut Pertubuhan Kesihatan Sedunia (WHO), ubat tiruan ialah ubat yang:

  • Tercemar. Ubat tercemar ialah produk asal yang dicampur dengan bahan lebih rendah mutunya atau tidak diluluskan
  • Mengandungi bahan aktif atau bahan kimia yang salah
  • Tidak mengandungi bahan aktif langsung
  • Jika ada bahan aktif, kuantitinya mungkin tidak tepat, sama ada terlalu sedikit atau banyak
  • Mempunyai rasa, konsistensi, rupa yang berlainan atau memberi tindak balas fizikal berbeza apabila dimakan
  • Dibungkus dalam bungkusan berbeza. Namun dalam kebanyakan kes, perbezaan pembungkusan ubat tiruan sukar dilihat
  • Tidak berdaftar dengan Kementerian Kesihatan

    Bahan aktif ialah formula kimia yang menyebabkan sesuatu ubat itu berkesan. Ubat tiruan boleh membahayakan kesihatan jika ia mengandungi berlebihan bahan aktif atau dicampurkan benda asing yang tidak diketahui kesannya kepada badan.

    Malah pengusaha ubat tiruan mungkin memasukkan bahan beracun ke dalam ubat. Bahan beracun ini boleh menyebabkan penyakit atau keadaan seseorang pesakit bertambah teruk, walaupun mereka mendakwa mengambil ubat secara teratur.

    Sebagai contoh, pesakit tekanan darah tinggi akan tetap mengalami masalah tekanan darah melebihi paras normal jika mengambil ubat tiruan kerana kuantiti bahan aktif di dalam ubat berkenaan tidak cukup untuk memberi kesan.

    Bagaimana untuk mengetahui kita mengambil ubat tiruan? Sama ada ubat diambil tidak berkesan atau pesakit mengalami kesan sampingan yang tidak dijangka, alahan atau penyakit menjadi lebih teruk.

    Sebenarnya payah untuk membezakan antara ubat asli dan tiruan. Pengusaha ubat tiruan sentiasa mengikuti perkembangan dan meniru secermat mungkin pembungkusan ubat asli. Justeru, beli ubat anda daripada farmasi berdaftar, dipercayai dan pakar perubatan saja.

    Jika anda dapati ada perbezaan pada bungkusan, rupa fizikal, rasa dan warna ubat, hubungi pengeluar ubat untuk mengesahkan sama ada mereka mengeluarkan bungkusan baru. Jika tidak, ubat itu mungkin palsu.

    Cara mengelak membeli ubat tiruan:
  • Beli ubat daripada farmasi berdaftar atau pakar perubatan saja
  • Usah terpengaruh jika ada pihak menawarkan produk pada harga murah
  • Usah beli jika bungkusannya mencurigakan atau sudah dibuka
  • Periksa tanda label pada produk
  • Baca dan periksa label pada bungkusan
  • Periksa sebarang perubahan pada bungkusan dengan ubat yang anda sudah beli
  • Jangan sekali-kali beli ubat melalui Internet atau telefon
  • Pastikan ubat berdaftar dengan Kementerian Kesihatan dan mempunyai hologram
  • Usah beli ubat daripada kedai runcit, kedai kopi, kedai ubat tradisional yang tidak berlesen, gerai tepi jalan atau ejen jualan langsung
    Gunakan budi bicara anda. Pilih ubat yang selamat iaitu disokong kajian saintifik, kerana ujian ini dilakukan ke atas ramai pesakit di seluruh dunia dalam pelbagai keadaan. Malah kesan sampingan ubat juga termasuk dalam kajian.

    Waspada jika ada pihak menawarkan ubat ajaib dan boleh menyembuhkan pelbagai penyakit yang hanya disokong oleh testimoni pengguna.

    Ini kerana reaksi setiap orang terhadap sesejenis ubat adalah berbeza. Ubat yang sesuai untuk individu A mungkin boleh mendatangkan bahaya kepada anda, walaupun kedua-duanya mengalami masalah kesihatan sama.

    Untuk meningkatkan kesedaran pengguna terhadap bahaya ubat palsu, Pfizer (Malaysia) Sdn Bhd menerbitkan buku panduan anti-ubat tiruan dalam bahasa Malaysia, Inggeris dan Cina.

    Menurut Pengarah Serantau Keselamatan Global Pfizer, Dave Campbell, buku panduan berkenaan mengandungi banyak maklumat mengenai bahaya ubat tiruan dan langkah berjaga-jaga dalam bentuk soal jawab yang mudah difahami.

    Buku panduan percuma itu boleh diperoleh dari mana-mana klinik dan farmasi. Pembaca juga boleh menghantar e-mel ke untuk mendapatkan satu salinan buku panduan.

    Jika anda curiga pada mana-mana produk atau ada maklumat mengenai ubat tiruan, sila hubungi Jabatan Perkhidmatan Farmaseutikal di talian 03-7968 2200 atau hantar e-mel ke

  • Lelaki bandar gemuk dan berpenyakit!

    KUALA LUMPUR - Lelaki bandar gemuk dan berpenyakit!

    Itulah hasil kajian Persatuan Andrologi Malaysia dan Kajian Penuaan Lelaki (MSASAM) yang mendapati 77 peratus lelaki yang berusia di antara 40 dan 70 tahun mengalami berat badan berlebihan di negara ini.
    Ekoran daripada masalah tersebut juga sebanyak 48 peratus daripada golongan itu menghidapi darah tinggi, kencing manis (28 peratus) penyakit jantung (12 peratus), prostat (30 peratus) dan 59.4 peratus mengalami disfungsi ereksi (ED) atau mati pucuk.

    Menteri Pembangunan Wanita, Keluarga dan Masyarakat, (KPWKM), Datuk Dr. Ng Yen Yen berkata, walaupun kajian tersebut diadakan di Subang dan Kelana Jaya, Selangor, tetapi ia merupakan gambaran sebenar tahap kesihatan lelaki di Malaysia.

    "Ini punca jangka hayat lelaki lebih singkat berbanding wanita iaitu kira-kira lima hingga tujuh tahun dan berdasarkan penyelidikan ini mendapati, sikap kaum lelaki terhadap kepentingan menjaga kesihatan juga menjadi punca kepada masalah itu.

    "Keengganan untuk mendapatkan bantuan dan bimbang dianggap lemah turut menyebabkan tahap kesihatan yang rendah, malah Akademi Pakar Perubatan Keluarga Amerika mengesahkan terdapat 30 sikap yang boleh menyebabkan mereka berisiko mend apat penyakit," katanya.

    Source: Copyright © 2008. KOSMO! Online.

    NEGERI Sembilan: Diabetes, obesiti tertinggi

    NEGERI Sembilan mencatatkan kadar diabetes, kesihatan mental dan obesiti di kalangan dewasa tertinggi di seluruh negara berdasarkan kajian Kesihatan dan Mobiditi Kebangsaan pada 2006 lalu.

    Berdasarkan kajian itu, seramai 15.33 peratus penduduk negeri ini yang berusia 18 tahun ke atas menghidap diabetes, diikuti masalah kesihatan mental (21.10 peratus) dan obesiti (18.60 peratus).

    Pengerusi Jawatankuasa Bertindak Kesihatan, Sains, Teknologi dan Inovasi, Datuk Ismail Taib, berkata peratus bagi tiga penyakit itu meletakkan Negeri Sembilan pada kedudukan pertama berbanding negeri lain seluruh negara.

    Masalah kesihatan mental kanak-kanak dan remaja pada kedudukan kedua seluruh negara iaitu seramai 31.20 peratus dikesan diikuti berat badan berlebihan di kalangan kanak-kanak pada kedudukan ketiga tertinggi berbanding negeri lain,? katanya.

    Beliau berkata demikian bagi menjawab soalan, Datuk Dr Awaluddin Said (BN-Kota) mengenai status kesihatan rakyat negeri ini dalam Persidangan Keempat (Belanjawan) Penggal Pertama Dewan Undangan Negeri (DUN) Negeri Sembilan.

    Source © Hak cipta terpelihara 2008 The New Straits Times Press (M) Berhad   

    Toxic boss or you're just lazy worker's

    Burdened by an overbearing boss? Your heart may pay the price. A Swedish study found that workers' risks for angina, heart attack and death rose along with the reported incompetence of their bosses. Here's how to survive.

    Take action:

    • Accept that the bully has personality problems - anyone who finds it necessary to wield their little bit of power in a way that humiliates those working under him/her, has problems of a deeper nature;
    • Don't take it personally - if you get shouted at for no reason, this is not about you, it's about the bully;
    • Ask for written instructions - in this manner, your boss has to get his/her ducks in a row before tasks are given;
    • Remain polite, but distant - never reveal any personal details to your boss (he/she may just use this information to intimidate you);
    • Learn to say no - a favourite tactic of bullies is to expect the increasingly impossible. < /font>

    Bad bosses hard on heart
    Last updated: Wednesday, November 26, 2008

    Burdened by an overbearing boss? Your heart may pay the price, according to new research.
    The Swedish study found that workers' risks for angina, heart attack and death rose along with the reported incompetence of their bosses.

    "This study is the first to provide evidence of a prospective, dose-response relationship between concrete managerial behaviours and objectively assessed heart disease among employees," said lead researcher Anna Nyberg, from the department of public health sciences at the Karolinska Institute, and Stress Research Institute at Stockholm University.
    "Enhancing managers' skills - regarding providing employees with information, support, power in relation to responsibilities, clarity in expectations, and feedback - could have important stress-reducing effects on employees and enhance the health at workplaces," Nyberg said.

    The report was published in the November 25 online edition of Occupational and Environmental Medicine. According to the researchers, being a good boss includes consideration for employees, setting clear goals, setting realistic expectations, communicating and giving feedback, managing change, including people in decision-making and delegating authority.

    How the study was done
    For the study, Nyberg's team collected data on more than 3 100 Swedish men who participated in the Work, Lipids, and Fibrinogen Stockholm study. The men, 19 to 70 years of age, had their hearts checked at work between 1992 and 1995. The researchers then matched these men with hospital records for heart disease illness and death up to 2003.

    During the follow-up period, there were 74 cases of fatal and nonfatal heart attacks or angina or death from heart disease, the researchers found.

    Nyberg's group found that the more competent the men thought their bosses were, the lower their risk of developing heart disease. In contrast, the poorer men rated their boss's leadership ability, the higher the risk for heart disease. In fact, the risk increased the longer someone worked in the same stressful environment.

    "Stress-related diseases are a large problem in our society," Nyberg said. "The workplace is one area in which stress occurs and thus can be reduced. This study suggests that managers have key roles in determining stress-related factors at work, which means that psychosocial work environment interventions could be directed towards managers in order to reduce stress in employees," she said.

    Dr G regg C. Fonarow is a professor of cardiology at the University of California, Los Angeles. He said a number of studies have suggested that stressful work environments boost workers' risk for cardiovascular events.
    "However, none of these studies have demonstrated causality, and it remains entirely unknown whether making these types of changes in the workplace would produce favourable effects on cardiovascular health," Fonarow said.

    Sick leave for mental health ups early death risk
    A related report - this time in the November 25 online edition of the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health- finds that taking sick leave from your job for mental health raises your risk of an early death.

    "People who take medically certified absence spells of one week or more have a 60 percent excess risk of early death," said lead researcher Jane Ferrie, from the Department of Epidemiology and Public Health at University College London, UK. "This excess risk is associated with some of the commonest diagnoses for sickness absence, in particular mental disorders," she said.

    For the study, Ferrie's group collected data on more than 19 000 French public utility workers, aged 37 to 51, who took part in the Gazel study.
    The researchers found that from 1993 to 2007, 902 people died, 144 of them women. From 1990 to 1992, there were about 12 500 medically certified sick leaves lasting seven or more working days, involving 41 percent of the employees. These employees were 60% more likely to die early, Ferrie noted.

    Women took sick leave more frequently than men. The data showed that, for both men and women, mental ill health and digestive and circulatory diseases in men were associated with the risk of dying early.

    Sick workers=unhappy workers?
    "Workers with medically certified absence for mental diagnoses should be considered a population at a higher risk of fatal disease," Ferrie concluded. "These diagnoses include mental health problems, often viewed as the diagnosis most likely to be used as an excuse for skiving."

    But Dr David L. Katz, director of the Prevention Research Centre at Yale University School of Medicine noted again that this research did not prove causality.
    "It may be that workers who are ill are less apt to be satisfied," Katz said. "But it is not unreasonable that dissatisfaction at work could translate into great risk for ill health, and even premature death," he said.

    It stands to reason that how we interact with others in the workplace is important to our health and quality of life, Katz said. "Given how much time we spend at work, relationships there clearly count. Intervention studies that aim to optimise the interaction between employee and manager, and test for health outcomes, would clearly make sense," he said. ? (HealthDay news, November 2008) 


    Take action:

    Avoid what experts call "sleep bulimia": super-late nights followed by sleep-in weekends. Rather stick to a routine and get enough sleep most nights of the week. Also don't feel guilty for napping - research shows taking a nap may boost a sophisticated kind of memory that helps you see the big picture and get creative.

    Naps good for memory
    Last updated: Tuesday, November 25, 2008
    Just in time for the holidays, some medical advice most people will like: Take a nap. Interrupting sleep seriously disrupts memory-making, compelling new research suggests. But on the flip side, taking a nap may boost a sophisticated kind of memory that helps a person see the big picture and get creative.

    "Not only do we need to remember to sleep, but most certainly we sleep to remember," is how Dr William Fishbein, a cognitive neuroscientist at the City University of New York, put it at a meeting of the Society for Neuroscience last week.
    Good sleep is a casualty of the busy modern world. Surveys suggest few adults attain the recommended seven to eight hours a night. Way too little clearly is dangerous: Sleep deprivation causes not just car crashes but all sorts of other accidents.

    Chronic lack of sleep leads to serious health problems
    Over time, a chronic lack of sleep can erode the body in ways that leave us more vulnerable to heart disease, diabetes and other illnesses. Perhaps more common than insomnia, however, is fragmented sleep, the easy awakening that comes with aging, or, worse, the sleep apnoea that afflicts millions, who repeatedly quit breathing for 30 seconds or so throughout the night.
    Indeed, scientists increasingly are focusing less on sleep duration and more on the quality of sleep, what is called sleep intensity, in studying how sleep helps the brain process memories so they stick. Particularly important is "slow-wave sleep," a period of very deep sleep that comes earlier than better-known REM sleep, or dreaming time.
    Fishbein suspected a more active role for the slow-wave sleep that can emerge even in a short power nap. Maybe the brain keeps working during that time to solve problems and come up with new ideas.

    How the study was done
    So he and graduate student Hiuyan Lau devised a simple test: documenting relational memory, where the brain puts together separately learned facts in new ways. First, they taught 20 English-speaking college students lists of Chinese words spelled with two characters, such as sister, mother, maid.
    Then half the students took a nap, being monitored to be sure they did not move from slow-wave sleep into the REM stage. Upon awakening, they took a multiple-choice t est of Chinese words they never had seen before.
    The nappers did much better at automatically learning that the first of the two-pair characters in the words they had memorized earlier always meant the same thing - female, for example. So they also were more likely than non-nappers to choose that a new word containing that character meant "princess" and not "ape."
    "The nap group has essentially teased out what's going on," Fishbein concludes.
    These students took a 90-minute nap, quite a luxury for most adults. But even a 12-minute nap can boost some forms of memory, adds Dr Robert Stickgold of Harvard Medical School.

    Sleep apnoea suppresses birth of new brain cells
    Conversely, Wisconsin researchers briefly interrupted night-time slow-wave sleep by playing a beep - just loudly enough to disturb sleep but not awaken - and found those people could not remember a task they had learned the day before as well as people whose slow-wave sleep was not disrupted.
    That brings us back to fragmented sleep, whether from ageing or apnoea. It can suppress the birth of new brain cells in the hippocampus, where memory-making begins, enough to hinder learning weeks after sleep returns to normal, warns Dr Dennis McGinty of the University of California, Los Angeles.
    To prove a lasting effect, McGinty mimicked human sleep apnoea in rats. He hooked them to brain monitors and made them sleep on a treadmill. Whenever the monitors detected 30 seconds of sleep, the treadmill briefly switched on.
    After 12 days of this sleep disturbance, McGinty let the rats sleep peacefully for as long as they wanted for the next two weeks.
    The catch-up sleep did not help: Rested rats used room cues to quickly learn the escape hole in a maze. Those with fragmented sleep two weeks earlier could not, only randomly stumbling upon the escape.

    'Get sleep problems sorted'
    None of the new work is enough, yet, to pinpoint the minimum sleep needed for optimal memory. What's needed may vary considerably from person to person.
    "A short sleeper may have a very efficient deep sleep even if they sleep only four hours," notes Dr Chiara Cirellia of the University of Wisconsin, Madison. But altogether, the findings do suggest some practical advice: Get apnoea treated.
    Avoid what Harvard's Stickgold calls "sleep bulimia," super-late nights followed by sleep-in weekends. And don't feel guilty for napping. ? (Sapa, November 2008)