Health and Medical News and Resources

General interest items edited by Janice Flahiff

Researcher Finds Life Satisfaction, State Intervention Go Hand In Hand

From the 8 May 2011 Medical News Today article

People living in countries with governments that have a greater number of social services report being more satisfied with life, according to a study by a Baylor University researcher.

Dr. Patrick Flavin, assistant professor of political science at Baylor, said the effect of state intervention into the economy equaled or exceeded marriage when it came to satisfaction. The study is published in the spring issue of the journalPolitics & Policy.

[The abstract of the article is here,

for suggestions on how to get this article for free or at low cost, click here]

Free market capitalism has been championed by leaders such as the late President Ronald Reagan and former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, while left-leaning political parties and labor movements argue for more government intervention into the market. But scholars have paid little empirical attention to the debate in terms of which leads to more satisfaction among citizens, Flavin said. …

…The study measured government intervention into the economy in four ways: government tax revenue as a percentage of its gross domestic product (GDP), government consumption of GDP, generosity of unemployment benefits and a country’s welfare expenditures as a percentage of GDP.

“In many cases, less government intervention can allow for a more efficient economy, but greater economic efficiency doesn’t necessarily translate into greater contentment with one’s life,” Flavin said. “If you get sick and can’t work or lose your job and there are few social protections in place, you’re more likely to be anxious and less satisfied.”

The findings were consistent regardless of whether respondents were rich or poor and regardless of their political views, Flavin said. The findings rule out alternative explanations including individual characteristics — such as personal health, level of education and marital status — and such national factors as gross domestic product and unemployment rate. …

May 9, 2011 Posted by | Public Health | | Leave a comment

New Explanations And Treatment Approaches For Gastrointestinal Disorders Offered By Dietary Research

diagram of a human digestive system

Image via Wikipedia

Excerpts from the 9 May 2011 Medical News Today article

Research being presented at Digestive Disease Week® (DDW) offers further evidence that diet affects gastrointestinal illnesses, such as gallstones and celiac disease, and that some patients who think their digestive problems are caused by lactose intoleranceare actually reacting to a psychological disorder. DDW is the largest international gathering of physicians and researchers in the field of gastroenterology, hepatology, endoscopy and gastrointestinal surgery….


Digestive Disease Week® 2011 (DDW®) is the largest international gathering of physicians, researchers and academics in the fields of gastroenterology, hepatology, endoscopy and gastrointestinal surgery. Jointly sponsored by the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases, the AGA Institute, the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy and the Society for Surgery of the Alimentary Tract, DDW takes place May 7 – May 10, 2011 in Chicago, IL. The meeting showcases more than 5,000 abstracts and hundreds of lectures on the latest advances in GI research, medicine and technology.

The Digestive Disease Week 2011 Web site includes the following which are free to the public

  • Links to YouTube poster presentations (by author, not topic or poster title)
  • Social media links (Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube)
  • Daily News from the meeting
Related Resources

May 9, 2011 Posted by | Consumer Health, Finding Aids/Directories, Health Education (General Public), Medical and Health Research News | | Leave a comment


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