Thursday, August 28, 2014

Fungus Food Draws Ire of CSPI

The Future of Food

Microbiome the Movie

Stress Related Skin?

Anyone who's had a pimple form right before an important event may wonder if stress caused the break out. While commonly linked anecdotally, proving the relationship between stress and inflammatory skin conditions, such as acne, psoriasis and rosacea, is another matter.

The American Academy of Dermatology says experimental data support the idea that the nervous system and stress affect inflammatory skin conditions in humans. Many types of cells in the skin, including immune cells and endothelial cells (cells that line blood vessels), can be regulated by neuropeptides and neurotransmitters, which are chemicals released by the skin's nerve endings. Stress can result in the skin's nerve endings releasing an increased level of these chemicals. When this occurs, it can affect how and at what level our body responds to many important functions, such as sensation and control of blood flow, and can contribute to the symptoms of stress that we feel. In addition, the release of these chemicals can lead to inflammation of the skin.

How does current research impact how people with inflammatory skin conditions are treated? More research needs to be done to further understand the role of the nervous system and stress on inflammatory skin conditions, especially since other factors play a role, including genetics.

You can experiment with stress reduction techniques such as meditation, yoga, or tai chi, but should continue your treatment plan as prescribed by their dermatologist if you have a skin condition.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

High Schoolers Need a Later School Day

Let them sleep!

That's the message from the nation's largest pediatrician group, which, in a new policy statement, says delaying the start of high school and middle school classes to 8:30 a.m. or later is "an effective countermeasure to chronic sleep loss" and the "epidemic" of delayed, insufficient, and erratic sleep patterns among the nation's teens.

Multiple factors, "including biological changes in sleep associated with puberty, lifestyle choices, and academic demands," negatively impact teens' ability to get enough sleep, and pushing back school start times is key to helping them achieve optimal levels of sleep – 8½ to 9½ hours a night, says the American Academy of Pediatrics statement, released Monday and published online in Pediatrics.

Just 1 in 5 adolescents get nine hours of sleep on school nights, and 45% sleep less than eight hours, according to a 2006 poll by the National Sleep Foundation (NSF).

"As adolescents go up in grade, they're less likely with each passing year to get anything resembling sufficient sleep," says Judith Owens, director of sleep medicine at Children's National Medical Center in Washington, D.C., and lead author of the AAP statement. "By the time they're high school seniors, the NSF data showed they were getting less than seven hours of sleep on average."

Chronic sleep loss in children and adolescents "can, without hyperbole, really be called a public health crisis," Owens says.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Risks With Growth Hormone for Short Stature

The use of growth hormone for the treatment of short stature or growth hormone deficiency in childhood may increase the long-term the risk for stroke in young adulthood, hemorrhagic strokes in particular, French registry data show.

Investigators at the University of Lorraine in France found a significantly higher risk for stroke among patients treated with growth hormone in childhood compared with 2 population-based registries used as reference controls.

The excess risk for stroke was mainly attributable to a "very substantially and significantly higher risk" of hemorrhagic stroke, at a standardized incidence ratio (SIR) ranging from 3.5 to 7.0, depending on the registry rates considered.

The study was published online August 13 in Neurology.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Relief for Ragweed Pollen Sufferers

It is the height of ragweed season in the Chicagoland area. If you are allergic to ragweed, you can reduce your symptoms in half by removing food cross-reactors until the season is over (3-6 weeks from now). Here is a complete list of cross-reactors and suggested replacements from our Conquering Allergy and Intolerance Action Plan.

Nut Butter Recall (some of which are Whole Foods and Trader Joes products)

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

The Real Reason We Yawn

Acid Suppression with Medication Raises Infection Risk.

A study published yesterday in JAMA Pediatrics concluded that acid-suppression use results in gastric bacterial overgrowth of Staphylococcus and Streptococcus. Even more shocking is that acid-suppression was associated with greater concentrations of bacteria in the lung. The researchers conclude that, "these results suggest that acid suppression use may need to be limited in patients at risk for infections".

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Young teeth: it's not just the sugar

Dental researchers are warning parents of the dangers of soft drinks, fruit juice, sports drinks and other drinks high in acidity, which form part of a "triple-threat" of permanent damage to young people's teeth.

For the first time, researchers in the Journal of Dentistry have demonstrated that lifelong damage is caused by acidity to the teeth within the first 30 seconds of acid attack.
The researchers say drinks high in acidity combined with night-time tooth grinding and reflux can cause major, irreversible damage to young people's teeth.

Dental erosion can lead to a lifetime of compromised dental health that may require complex and extensive rehabilitation -- but it is also preventable with minimal intervention. Often, children and adolescents grind their teeth at night, and they can have undiagnosed regurgitation or reflux, which brings with it acidity from the stomach. Combined with drinks high in acidity, this creates a triple threat to young people's teeth which can cause long-term damage.

What Is a Certified Nutrition Specialist?

While you may think registered dietitian is the only certification available to those in the nutrition field, think again.

To be a Certified Nutrition Specialist, you must have an advanced degree. This is why you see many doctors, nurses, and other health professionals besides nutritionists seek CNS certifications.

More importantly, the organization is not beholden to Big Food sponsors like the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is.

For more information, go to