Reduce Your Heart Attack Risk!
OK to eat all the fish you want It has been a
dilemma. Health authorities agree that there are big health benefits to
eating fish. On the other hand, they said we should limit our
consumption of fish because of toxic chemicals.
Now the dilemma is over. The new conclusion is: Eat
all the fish you want.
Two federally funded studies,
one from the Institute of Health, the other from Harvard and Brigham and
Women's Hospital in Boston, have analyzed hundreds of studies. They have
determined that eating more seafood may help reduce the risk of heart
disease in the general population.
Harvard researchers found that people who eat one to
two servings of fish per week, especially fatty fish like wild salmon,
may reduce their risk of death from heart attacks by 36 percent, and the
rate of death in general by 17 percent.
In addition, the reports show that pregnant or
nursing women who eat fish pass similar beneficial effects on to their
infants, including improved visual acuity and cognitive development.
Women who are pregnant or nursing should avoid eating
shark, swordfish, tilefish, and king mackerel. They should limit their
intake of albacore, or white tuna.
Some say new, expensive drugs may not always be
the best treatment. American drug companies are the world leaders in
developing life-saving medications.
Not every drug is a winner, however, according to the
Kaiser Permanente Drug Information Services. When a Merck study showed
that some Vioxx patients were more likely to have a heart attack or
stroke, Vioxx was pulled from the market.
This is not the only case of an FDA-approved drug
being taken off the market. Complications in some drugs may not become
apparent until it has been on the market for some time.
When it comes to prescription drugs, the Public
Citizen Health Research Group recommends that, unless there is no
effective alternative, consumers should avoid taking medications that
have not been on the market for several years.
Authorities at the Group say that if an equally
effective drug with a longer track record is available, why take a
chance of going with the newer competitor? Often, of course, patients
can't wait several years to use a life-saving medication.
A new study by the CDC in the AMA Journal shows that some 700,000
Americans a year are seen in emergency rooms because of bad reactions to
There could be many reasons for bad reactions,
however, including the patient's not following instructions.
OK to get Medicine from Canada
Under pressure from Congress and Sen. Bill Nelson
(D., Fla.) Customs and Border Protection officials discontinued seizing
drugs mailed from Canada. October 9 was the first day of the new policy.
As of mid-July 2006, Customs officials had seized more than 37,000 drug
packages since the November 2005 drug seizure policy went into effect.
Officials won't say how many packages were seized since July.
AIDS Testing for People Age 13 to 64
Federal health officials are recommending that
testing for the AIDS virus should be offered to everyone in every
hospital, doctor's office, and clinic to speed diagnosis and help curb
the AIDS epidemic.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's
recommendations are not binding, but designed to make AIDS testing as
routine as tests for high blood pressure, cholesterol, and diabetes.
About 1 million people in the US are HIV-positive,
but 250,000 of them have not been diagnosed. Timothy Mastro of the CDC
says, "We think that the quarter of a million people who don't know
their infection status account for 70 percent of sexually transmitted
New Class of Diabetes Drugs
A new type of diabetes drug becomes active only when
blood sugar rises. It doesn't cause dangerous drops in sugar levels that
can occur with insulin or other diabetes treatments.
The Food and Drug Administration has approved Merck's
Januvia, the first in a new class of diabetes drugs. When blood sugar
rises after a patient eats, hormones normally bring blood sugar levels
down. In diabetics, however, the hormones are inactivated by the DPP-4
enzyme. Januvia blocks the action of DPP-4. The cost will be $4.86 per
daily pill to treat type 2