Sunday, February 5, 2012

Odds and Ends

Mummy Tales - The discovery of prostate cancer in a 2200 year old mummy challenges the lifestyle link for prostate cancer.  Well, we know the mummy wasn't eating the high fat, sugar, calorie Western diet, but we don't know much else. According to the most recent data from the American Cancer Society, there will be about 241,740 new prostate cancer cases this year (USA) and 28,170 deaths.  Interestingly, it is the biggest cancer type for males, with 29% of all cancer diagnosis for men being of the prostate - with lung cancer second at 14%.  HOWEVER, among those types, there is only 9% of death from prostate and 29% death from lung.

NSLP - As I listened to a reporter interviewing some middle/high school students regarding changes to their school lunches, I felt growing frustration.  The students were unhappy and I contribute this displeasure not with a reduction in fat, sugar and calories but with what was actually served that day.  It was some crazy recipe that the children were not used to.  Healthy is not tasteless and tasty - low calorie does not have to equal low volume.  GRRRR: The policy is sound, needed, and health promoting but people can implement it stupidly.

ZAP Baby Preventer - Sure wish I had heard more details. All I have is that applying some amount of electric shock to the testes effects the sperm so that it isn't motile or it dies or something.  This was touted as a possible male birth control method.  I am wondering who in the world was in this experiment.  I bet it was a male animal of non human origin.

Sugar Policy- I cannot do justice to this commentary published in the journal Nature and I am not sure this link to the full article will work for you.  A link is available if you access to a library - journal access. But importantly, from the article by Dr. Robert Lustig, fructose and added sugars made from it (including HFCS and sucrose), DO change metabolic functioning when over consumed. Hence, excessive sugar intake, can lead to hypertension, insulin resistance, impaired aging, some cancers, liver problems and obesity.  Noted in the article, 20% of obese persons do not have metabolic dysfunction and do not have a shortened lifespan.  OF course, what I take from that is that 80% of obese people DO have those problems. However, 40% of normal weight persons also have problems with these metabolic related illnesses (we don't know anything else about them - i.e. do they exercise? is it genetic?).  As I have said though, you can eat crap and not be fat but that does not mean you will be healthy - so there you go.  I also need to know what the researchers are quantifying "excessive" to mean.  I hope you can get to the article and see the world map they have - it shows the average amount of calories per day of added sugar that is consumed per person by country.  The USA is upwards of 600 cals a day in added sugar... Australia and Russia come next.

Belt too Tight? - No worries.  I saw a commercial today for this handy gadget that allows you to easily add another hole at the end of your belt.  Funny because to sell a hole puncher, it would have made just as much sense to ask, "Belt too loose?"  Guess that doesn't happen as often.  BUT -if your belt IS too tight - I suggest some lifestyle changes, not a belt change.

Congratulations to the NY Giants - Super Bowl XLVI - (46) Champions - and my most favorite forever sports team

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