WHO Says Cell Phone Use “Possibly Carciongenic:” Using a mobile phone might increase the risk of developing certain types of brain tumors and consumers should consider ways of reducing their exposure, World Health Organization (WHO) cancer experts said on Tuesday. A working group of 31 scientists from 14 countries meeting at the WHO's International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) said a review of all the available scientific evidence suggested cell phone use should be classified as "possibly carcinogenic." Reuters
Cancer Costs Highest for Individually Insured: One of every seven cancer patients spends more than 20 percent of his income on health care and insurance, according to a new study from federal researchers. Among these patients, those who buy private insurance on their own - instead of through an employer - pay the most out-of-pocket for their health care, compared to patients who have other forms of insurance or none at all. Journal of Clinical Oncology, online May 31, 2011
My Plate Replaces Food Pyramid: "My Plate" — a simple circle divided into quadrants that contain fruits, vegetables, protein and grains — will replace USDA's food pyramid, which has been around in various forms since 1992. The new symbol, unveiled Thursday at the department with first lady Michelle Obama in attendance, is simple and gives diners an idea of what should be on their plates when they sit down at the dinner table. Gone are any references to sugars, fats or oils, and what was once a category called "meat and beans" is now simply "proteins." Next to the plate is a blue circle for dairy, which could be a glass of milk or a food such as cheese or yogurt.
Cholesterol Drugs Tied to Lower Prostate Cancer Risk: Men taking cholesterol-lowering medication may be less likely to get prostate cancer than those not on the drugs, suggests a new study. They are also less likely to wind up with aggressive versions of the disease, researchers found. The Journal of Urology, online May 14, 2011.
Omega 3-fats Linked to Lower Diabetes Risk: People who get plenty of omega-3 fatty acids in their diets may have lowered odds of developing type 2 diabetes, two new reports suggest. In one study, of more than 3,000 older U.S. adults, researchers found that those with the highest blood levels of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) -- two omega-3s found in fatty fish -- were about one-third less likely to develop diabetes over the next decade than their counterparts with the lowest levels. In the other, researchers found that among 43,000 Singapore adults, those who got the most alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) in their diets had a decreased diabetes risk. ALA is an omega-3 fat found in certain plant foods, including flaxseed, canola oil and soy. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, online May 18, 2011.
No Cancer Link with Blood Pressure pill: The Food and Drug Administration says there is no link between a popular group of blood pressure medications and cancer, despite a recent paper suggesting a slightly higher risk in patients taking the drugs. In an analysis of 60,000 patients published last summer, experts found a link between people taking medicines known as angiotensin-receptor blockers - Diovan, Micardis and Avapro- and cancer. The drugs are taken by millions of people worldwide for conditions like high blood pressure, heart problems and diabetic kidney disease. Associated Press
US Cancer Patients Face Barriers to Care: For newly diagnosed cancer patients, appointments with an oncologist are hard to come by -- even among those with private health insurance, according to U.S. researchers. The study found that in two-thirds of cases, research assistants posing as new cancer patients were unable to obtain an appointment with an oncologist for an initial exam. The findings, from a team at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, are slated for presentation on Saturday at the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology in Chicago.
Meditation May Help Women Cope with Hot Flashes: An easy-to-learn meditation technique can help ease the hot flashes, night sweats and insomnia of menopause, a new study says. The University of Massachusetts research showed that mindfulness training, based on a Buddhist meditation concept, reduced the distress associated with hot flashes and improved physical, psychosocial and sexual functioning. Menopause June
HHS to Reduce Premiums, Make it Easier for Those with Pre Existing Conditions to Get Health Insurance: Premiums for the Federally-administered Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan (PCIP) will drop as much as 40 percent in 18 States, and eligibility standards will be eased in 23 States and the District of Columbia to ensure more Americans with pre-existing conditions have access to affordable health insurance. The Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan was created under the Affordable Care Act and serves as a bridge to 2014 when insurers will no longer be allowed to deny coverage to people with any pre-existing condition, like cancer, diabetes, and asthma.
Yoga Helps Older Stroke Patients Improve Balance, Endurance: An Indiana University study that exposed older veterans with stroke to yoga produced promising results as researchers explore whether this popular mind-body practice can help stroke victims cope with their increased risk for painful and even deadly falls.
Significant Benefits of Yoga in People with Rheumatoid Arthritis Individuals with rheumatoid arthritis who practice yoga showed statistically significant improvements in disease activity, according to a small study presented at the EULAR 2011 Annual Congress.
Acupuncture of Benefit to Those with Unexplained Symptoms: A study of 80 adults, average age of 50, who had consulted their doctor at least eight times in the past year. Five element acupuncture had a significant and sustained benefit for those with unexplained symptoms. British Journal of General Practice http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110530080513.htm
Many cancer survivors can’t shake pain, fatigue, insomnia, foggy brain: When people finish treatment for cancer, they want to bounce back to their former vital selves as quickly as possible. But a new Northwestern Medicine study -- one of the largest survivor studies ever conducted -- shows many survivors still suffer moderate to severe problems with pain, fatigue, sleep, memory and concentration three to five years after treatment has ended. ScienceDaily.