Health & Wellness


Vaccination Propaganda: Measles outbreak hits 127 people in 15 US states

The biggest U.S. outbreak of measles since 1997 has sickened 127 people in 15 states, most of whom were not vaccinated against the highly contagious viral illness, federal health officials said on Wednesday.

The outbreak was driven by travelers who became infected overseas -- 10 countries are implicated -- then returned to the United States ill and infected others, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Thanks to a vaccination program dating to 1963, measles is no longer endemic in the United States, with ongoing transmission of the virus declared eliminated in 2000.

Vaccinations - A Health Hazard?

IN RECENT months health authorities have implored parents to be responsible and vaccinate their children.

As well as whooping cough, diptheria, tetanus, polio and German measles (rubella), vaccines are now urged against hepatitis B and the "new" disease Haemophilis Influenzae b (Hib), which causes a host of invasive infections including the brain disease meningitis.

However, leading doctors and scientists here and overseas are seriously questioning the value of mass vaccination programs and claim vaccinations may in fact be doing more harm than good by sabotaging our natural immune systems.

Stomach infection spreads in East Siberia

A total of 135 people in the Krasnoyarsk Territory in East Siberia have been diagnosed with yersiniosis, a bacterial stomach infection, as of Wednesday morning, a spokeswoman for the local consumer safety regulator said.

Of the 135, thirty four children and four adults remain in hospital.

Yersiniosis is an infection contracted through eating undercooked food or liquids contaminated by the bacteria. The disease, which usually affects young children, typically develops from four to seven days after exposure and may last up to three weeks.

Desk rage spoils workplace for many Americans

Get out of the way, road rage. Here comes desk rage.

Anger in the workplace -- employees and employers who are grumpy, insulting, short-tempered or worse -- is shockingly common and likely growing as Americans cope with woes of rising costs, job uncertainty or overwhelming debt, experts say.

"It runs gamut from just rudeness up to pretty extreme abusive behaviors," said Paul Spector, professor of industrial and organizational psychology at the University of South Florida. "The severe cases of fatal violence get a lot of press but in some ways this is more insidious because it affects millions of people."

Missing facial muscles make some look glum

Scientists may have discovered the reason why some people always look glum.

Limited or very specific facial expressions could be explained by the fact that some humans have fewer muscles in their face than others, research from the University of Portsmouth suggests.

The findings could perhaps explain why certain people, such as the character Victor Meldrew in the television series One Foot in The Grave, seem to have a permanent scowl.

Mum's Vitamin D levels affect baby's dental health

Babies born to women with low levels of vitamin D during pregnancy may be at increased risk for tooth enamel defects and early childhood tooth decay, a Canadian study finds.

Researchers at the University of Manitoba analysed the vitamin D levels of 206 women in their second trimester of pregnancy and found only 21 (10.5 per cent) of the women had adequate vitamin D levels. The women's levels of vitamin D were related to the frequency of milk consumption and prenatal vitamin use.

4 out of 5 sunscreens inadequate, study finds

When temperatures soar past the century mark around the Bay Area, people head for the beach with all of the usual gear in tow. Think towels, Frisbees, coolers, umbrellas. And sunscreen.

Oceans of it.

Americans will spend more than $1.1 billion on sun protection products this year, a market that's grown by an annual rate of 10 percent since 2004.

But is it worth it?

Scientists learn how food affects the brain

In addition to helping protect us from heart disease and cancer, a balanced diet and regular exercise can also protect the brain and ward off mental disorders.

"Food is like a pharmaceutical compound that affects the brain," said Fernando Gómez-Pinilla, a UCLA professor of neurosurgery and physiological science who has spent years studying the effects of food, exercise and sleep on the brain. "Diet, exercise and sleep have the potential to alter our brain health and mental function. This raises the exciting possibility that changes in diet are a viable strategy for enhancing cognitive abilities, protecting the brain from damage and counteracting the effects of aging."

Gómez-Pinilla analyzed more than 160 studies about food's affect on the brain; the results of his analysis appear in the July issue of the journal Nature Reviews Neuroscience and are available online here.

Early-life Nutrition May Be Associated With Adult Intellectual Functioning

Adults who had improved nutrition in early childhood may score better on intellectual tests, regardless of the number of years they attended school, according to a new article.

"Schooling is a key component of the development of literacy, reading comprehension and cognitive functioning, and thus of human capital," the authors write as background information in the article. Research also suggests that poor nutrition in early life is associated with poor performance on cognitive (thinking, learning and memory) tests in adulthood. "Therefore, both nutrition and early-childhood intellectual enrichment are likely to be important determinants of intellectual functioning in adulthood."

US: Epilepsy drugs targeted for black box suicide warning

Federal regulators want the makers of epilepsy drugs to add a black box warning to their labels about their association with suicidal thoughts and behavior. The Food & Drug Administration (FDA) is set to ask an outside advisory panel for its recommendations on the proposed black box at a meeting this Thursday.