Health & WellnessS


Tool detects depression in cancer patients

British researchers have found that one-quarter of patients with advanced cancer have depression that had previously not been diagnosed.

The effects of depression can be as difficult to cope with as the physical symptoms of a terminal illness such as cancer, said lead researcher Mari Lloyd-Williams of the University of Liverpool.


Psychotherapy Quiets Concerns Over Ringing In The Ears

Psychotherapy may help tinnitus suffers cope with the life disturbances that sometimes accompany their condition, according to a new review of studies.

Tinnitus is a sensation of ringing or other noise when there is no external cause for the sound. A counseling method called cognitive behavioral therapy or CBT seems to amplify patients' quality of life, even when the volume of the noise remains the same.

"It's a way of working on beliefs and changing psychological responses to tinnitus," said lead reviewer Pablo Martinez-Devesa. "Usually you'd assess the patient's feelings and perceptions of tinnitus, then introduce education on the possible causes. Then, through several sessions, you would try to change the attitudes of patients toward the tinnitus."


Medium caffeine intake "does not affect pregnancy"

Drinking moderate amounts of caffeine during pregnancy does not lead to premature births or underweight babies, Danish scientists said on Friday.

Up to three cups of coffee a day does not seem to have any negative impact on the baby or the pregnancy.

Earlier studies that looked at the impact of moderate caffeine consumption during pregnancy have produced mixed results. Some showed no difference while others suggested too much caffeine could lower average birth weight by 100-200 grams (3.5-7 ounces).


Brain's 'addiction centre' found

The discovery of individuals with brain damage who give up smoking with ease could point the way to a surgical 'cure' for smoking, US scientists say.

The particular brain area damaged - called the insula - appears to be central to the urge to smoke, a team told the journal Science.

One man had smoked 40 cigarettes a day but quit immediately after his insula was damaged by a stroke.

Surgery on that part of the brain may help beat addictions, they suggest.

Comment: Is it really a surgical "cure" they are trying to find, or rather new methods of enhancing addictions under the mask of cientific research "for the sake of the population"?


Global warming possibly linked to an enhanced risk of suicide: Data from Italy, 1974 - 2003

The global increase in surface temperature (known as global warming) was found to impact on mortality through ill health, particularly among the elderly and in summer. This study sets out to explore the impact of global warming on suicide mortality, using data from Italy.


Fashion chiefs agree to discuss ultra-thin models

The powerful fashion federations of France, Italy, the United States and Britain have decided to address the controversy over ultra-thin models, the French body said Thursday.

The fashion industry has been widely attacked for promoting the kind of stick-thin images which critics say contribute to eating disorders in young women and some countries have taken cautious measures to bring more weight onto the catwalks.

Spain barred models below a certain body mass from Madrid fashion shows in September and organizers of New York's fashion shows this month issued guidelines to tackle the problem, although stopping short of banning them.


Sharp sums in the head aim to blunt impact of TV

A daily dose of mental arithmetic has been placed on the curriculum for primary and even nursery schools in France, under a government scheme to sharpen young minds dulled by television.

Gilles de Robien, the Education Minister, has ordered children to carry out between 15 and 20 minutes of calcul mental every day from the age of 5, when they are in the final year of nursery school, as part of a back-to-basics programme.

He also wants five-year-olds to resume the study of multiplication and division, as well as addition and subtraction, for the first time since the 1970s.


Scientists restore gene to shrink tumors in mice

Reactivating a gene that normally suppresses the growth of tumors may be an effective way to treat cancers, scientists said on Wednesday.

The gene called p53 is a leading tumor suppressor which stops damaged cells from dividing. In the majority of human cancers the gene does not work properly.

But teams of scientists in the United States have shown that reactivating, or restoring the function of the gene, can make certain types of tumors in mice shrink or disappear.


'Altruistic' brain region found

Scientists say they have found the part of the brain that predicts whether a person will be selfish or an altruist.

Altruism - the tendency to help others without obvious benefit to oneself - appears to be linked to an area called the posterior superior temporal sulcus.

Using brain scans, the US investigators found this region related to a person's real-life unselfish behaviour.


Medicare for All: The Only Sound Solution to Our Healthcare Crisis

Contrary to popular conceptions, the average medical bankrupt was a 41-year old woman with children, some college education; over half owned homes and over 80 percent were in the middle or working classes.
Our $2 trillion healthcare industry is not only unhealthy, it is unsustainable. Why universal Medicare is the way to get universal healthcare without collapsing the system.