Health and Medical News and Resources

General interest items edited by Janice Flahiff

How To Cut Calories With Fast Foods

How To Cut Calories With Fast Foods.

From the 19 December Medical News Today article

Dr. Bartfield’s Fast-Food Tips:

  • “Select grilled rather than fried. A fast-food grilled chicken sandwich has 470 calories and 18 grams of fat while the fried version has 750 calories and 45 grams of fat.
  • Hold off on cheese, mayonnaise and salad dressings unless low-fat options are available. Cheese can add an additional 100 calories or more per serving, as does mayonnaise and, often, you won’t miss the taste when ordering the plainer versions.
  • Order the smallest size available. Go for the single burger rather than the double and for the small fry rather than bonus-size.
  • Skip sugar-sweetened drinks, which are usually absent in nutritional value and don’t make you feel more satisfied. These calories quickly add up leading to excessive calorie consumption, especially at restaurants offering free refills on drinks.
  • Save half of your order for your next meal. You save calories, save time and also save money.”

December 21, 2011 Posted by | Consumer Health, Nutrition | , | Leave a comment

One trait has huge impact on whether alcohol makes you aggressive

One trait has huge impact on whether alcohol makes you aggressive.

From the 19 December 2011 Science Daily article

 Drinking enough alcohol to become intoxicated increases aggression significantly in people who have one particular personality trait, according to new research.

But people without that trait don’t get any more aggressive when drunk than they would when they’re sober.

That trait is the ability to consider the future consequences of current actions.

“People who focus on the here and now, without thinking about the impact on the future, are more aggressive than others when they are sober, but the effect is magnified greatly when they’re drunk,” said Brad Bushman, lead author of the study and professor of communication and psychology at Ohio State University.

“If you carefully consider the consequences of your actions, it is unlikely getting drunk is going to make you any more aggressive than you usually are.”

Peter Giancola, professor of psychology, at the University of Kentucky, co-authored the paper with Bushman and led the experiments used in the study. Other co-authors were Dominic Parrott, associate professor of psychology at of Georgia State University and Robert Roth, associate professor of psychiatry, at Dartmouth Medical School. Their results appear online in theJournal of Experimental Social Psychology  and will be published in a future print edition.

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Bushman said it makes sense that alcohol would make present-focused people more aggressive.

“Alcohol has a myopic effect — it narrows your attention to what is important to you right now. That may be dangerous to someone who already has that tendency to ignore the future consequences of their actions and who is placed in a hostile situation.”……….

December 21, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Lower classes quicker to show compassion in the face of suffering

Lower classes quicker to show compassion in the face of suffering.

(University of California – Berkeley) Emotional differences between the rich and poor, as depicted in such Charles Dickens classics as “A Christmas Carol” and “A Tale of Two Cities,” may have a scientific basis. Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, have found that people in the lower socio-economic classes are more physiologically attuned to suffering, and quicker to express compassion than their more affluent counterparts….

“It’s not that the upper classes are coldhearted,” said UC Berkeley social psychologist Jennifer Stellar, lead author of the study published online on Dec. 12 in the journal, Emotion. “They may just not be as adept at recognizing the cues and signals of suffering because they haven’t had to deal with as many obstacles in their lives.”

Stellar and her colleagues’ findings challenge previous studies that have characterized lower-class people as being more prone to anxiety and hostility in the face of adversity.

“These latest results indicate that there’s a culture of compassion and cooperation among lower-class individuals that may be born out of threats to their wellbeing,” Stellar said….

December 21, 2011 Posted by | Psychology, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

‘Transending Borders Towards Global Health’

From the Eureka News Alert (December 20, 2011) 

Transcending Borders Towards Global Health is a thought stimulating conference, convening leaders, changemakers, and participants from all areas of global health. The conference is set to engage stakeholders through a critical and integrated assessment of the state of global health as well as the policies and actions taken to reduce disparities in global health and unacceptable levels of poor health framed within five key themes: international health, ecohealth, marginalized communities, education, and advocacy and activism.


The conference is sponsored by the Office of Global Health in the Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry at The University of Western Ontario. It takes place April 27-29, 2012 at the London Convention Centre in London, Ontario, Canada.

The agenda, speakers list and registration details can be found at .

December 21, 2011 Posted by | Public Health | , | Leave a comment

How Influenza Evolves – And How To Stop It From Doing So

How Influenza Evolves – And How To Stop It From Doing So.

If you become infected with the flu after getting vaccinated, your body activates an immune response that stops you from becoming ill. Although, this can trigger the virus to change into a slightly different form – one that may be more infectious.

A novel investigation from MIT reveals the mechanism responsible for this phenomenon, known as antigenic drift. The study was funded by the National Institutes of Health and the Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology and appears in the December 19 online edition of Scientific Reports, an open-access journal published by Nature.

December 21, 2011 Posted by | Medical and Health Research News, Uncategorized | , , | Leave a comment

Consumer and Lifestyle App Reviews (Diabetes, Gluten-Free, and Weight Loss Management)

From the Web page of the American Dietetic Association

Thousands of diet and nutrition apps are available for phones and tablets… so many, in fact, that there are apps to find apps. So when searching for the right apps to help you safely manage your health, don’t make your selection based on the same criteria used to rate Angry Birds. Understand which apps are helpful and based on fact, not fad. Turn to the food and nutrition experts—registered dietitians—for science-based reviews of the most popular apps on the market.

Three Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics spokespeople have reviewed top-rated, free iPhone apps for those looking to lose weight, manage their diabetes or eat gluten-free:

  • Marisa Moore, MBA, RD, LD, reviews the 10 top-rated free iPhone apps for managing diabetes.
  • Jessica Crandall, RD, CDE, reviews the 10 top-rated free iPhone apps for gluten-free eating.
  • Sarah Krieger, MPH, RD, LDN, reviews the 10 top-rated free iPhone apps for weight management.

Ratings are on a scale of 1 to 5 stars.

Diabetes Bread Caution Weight Loss Apple
Diabetes App Reviews » Gluten-Free App Reviews » Weight Loss App Reviews »

Related resources and articles

Health and Wellness Information and Tracking Apps(

Health Apps (Health and Medical News and Resources selected by Janice Flahiff)

December 21, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | Leave a comment

The Academy Of Nutrition And Dietetics Advocates For Expanded Nutritional Coverage Under Medicare

From the 21 December Medical News Today article

he Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics has prepared a request to submit to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to expand coverage of medical nutritiontherapy (MNT) for specific diseases, including hypertensionobesity, and cancer, as part of the CMS National Coverage Determination (NCD) Process. Most chronic health conditions can be controlled or treated with medical nutrition therapy, yet Medicare will only reimburse nutrition therapy services provided by a registered dietitian for individuals with diabetes and renal disease. “That’s just not enough if we want to improve the health of the nation and rein in escalating healthcare costs,” says Marsha Schofield, MS, RD, LD, the Academy’s Director of Nutrition Services Coverage.

Under the NCD Process, the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services can expand Medicare coverage for services that are reasonable and necessary for the prevention of an illness. Ms. Schofield explains, “There are an escalating number of baby boomers turning 65 and entering the Medicare system. The majority of Medicare spending is on individuals with chronic conditions, and almost 70% of Medicare beneficiaries suffer from cardiovascular disease. Chronic conditions can be controlled or treated with medical nutrition therapy, so it just makes sense to try to expand the Medicare beneficiary’s access to these important services.”

The Academy’s NCD request is published in the January 2012 issue of the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics …

…The article is “The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics National Coverage Determination Formal Request,” by Prashanthi Rao Raman, Esq, MPH, and Erica Gradwell, MS, RD, in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Volume 112, Issue 1 (January 2012) published by Elsevier.

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Read the entire news article here

December 21, 2011 Posted by | Nutrition | , , , | Leave a comment

Misperceptions about child sex offenders

Trends & issues in crime and criminal justice no.429

Kelly Richards
ISSN 1836-2206
Canberra: Australian Institute of Criminology, September 2011


Sexual offending against children is a highly emotive issue. It is nonetheless important that public policy initiatives to prevent and/or respond to child sexual abuse are based on the available evidence about child sex offenders.

This paper addresses five common misperceptions about the perpetrators of sexual offences against children. Specifically, the issues addressed include whether all child sex offenders are ‘paedophiles’, who sexually abuse children, whether most child sex offenders were victims of sexual abuse themselves, rates of recidivism among child sex offenders and the number of children sex offenders typically abuse before they are detected by police.

The evidence outlined in this paper highlights that there are few black and white answers to these questions. Perpetrators of sexual crimes against children are not, contrary to widespread opinion, a homogenous group. Rather, there are a number of varied offending profiles that characterise child sex offenders. Gaining an understanding of the nuances of this offender population is critical if children are to be protected from sexual abuse…….

Read the entire article here

December 21, 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | Leave a comment


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