Plumpynut, orthopedic payoff and the bipolar explosion - NewsGrabs 11 November 2007
Health Supreme's NewsGrabs are a selection of alternative health and other underprivileged news. Find what you may have missed in your everyday reading - watch out for NewsGrabs on weekends.
Here is another week's worth of interesting stories collected for you:
Orthopedic Surgeons’ Buck-raking Exposed -
Video: Danger of wi-fi in schools -
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A Life Saver Called "Plumpynut"
You've probably never heard a good news story about malnutrition, but you’re about to. Every year, malnutrition kills five million children -- that's one child every six seconds. But now, the Nobel Prize-winning relief group "Doctors Without Borders" says it finally has something that can save millions of these children. It's cheap, easy to make and even easier to use. What is this miraculous cure?
Plumpynut is a remarkably simple concoction: it is basically made of peanut butter, powdered milk, powdered sugar, and enriched with vitamins and minerals. It tastes like a peanut butter paste. It is very sweet, and because of that kids cannot get enough of it.
Study Shows Vitamin "Pill-Poppers" Are Healthier
New research indicates that NOT taking supplements may be harmful to your health, and that a single daily multi-vitamin is inadequate. A study of hundreds of persons who take a number of different dietary supplements has found that the more supplements they take, the better their health is. The study authors reported that a "greater degree of supplement use was associated with more favorable concentrations of serum homocysteine, C-reactive protein, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and triglycerides, as well as lower risk of prevalent elevated blood pressure and diabetes."
Vitamin D 'may help slow ageing'
A vitamin made when sunlight hits the skin could help slow down the ageing of cells and tissues, say researchers. A King's College London study of more than 2,000 women found those with higher vitamin D levels showed fewer ageing-related changes in their DNA.
We know the sun causes the skin to manufacture vitamin D and all kinds of health-enhancing effects are now being attributed to the vitamin. Could it be however that the sun's rays are benefiting us in other ways as well? I am thinking about photons and energy the human body may be capable of utilizing. The flurry of good news around vitamin D brings to mind a man who claimed he survived on sunlight alone for an extended period of time.
A question for the European Commission: Are carrots and brazil nuts more dangerous than vitamin supplements?
The European Commission is currently in the process of finalising methods for the setting of maximum levels of vitamins and minerals in food supplements. Although it claims that it will be taking a scientific approach to this procedure, the reality is that the maximum level for beta-carotene may be set at a level less than that contained in two carrots, whilst the maximum level for selenium may be set at a level less than that contained in a mere two brazil nuts.
New Zealand: No need to buy in to Aussie rules
After five years of fitful debate the Government has given up its attempt to control a wide range of health products - everything from surgical equipment to sunscreens and vitamin pills - through a joint licensing agency with Australia. The proposal, which appears to have come from the New Zealand side, was part of a general effort to extend and deepen our immensely valuable closer economic relations (CER). A few days ago Helen Clark called John Howard to say she had failed...
Codex Nutrition Committee meets in Germany
(link no longer active)
"Since Codex sets international principles, guidelines, and standards for all types of foods," said Scott Tips, "it is essential that the voice of vitamin consumers be heard adequately—and this has been our key focus at Codex ever since we've been involved. We are here to make a difference at these meetings and we can already see from our attendance at yesterday's Electronic Working Group meeting on risk assessment that a number of delegations are receptive to our ideas. "
Addressing some serious scientific concerns, Dr Robert Verkerk added, "In yesterday's meeting, we have managed to make a strong case that risk-assessment approaches presently being used in Europe—which are being pushed as global guidelines to be adopted through Codex—need to be urgently amended if they are not to prevent millions of people in both the less-developed and developed world from obtaining health-promoting levels of nutrients in foods and food supplements."
New natural HI sweetener could rival aspartame, sucralose
A new plant-derived high intensity sweetener is set to hit the market worldwide, emerging as what could be the first natural sweetener to rival artificial counterparts such as aspartame and sucralose. Brazzein, which is derived from a plant native to Africa, will be marketed globally under the brand name Cweet. The product is touted as being 1,000 times sweeter than cane sugar on a weight basis.
Video: The REAL Reasons You Want to Avoid Genetically Modified Foods
Jeffrey Smith, author of Seeds of Deception, summarizes the contents of his book, which explains how genetically modified ... all » foods cause health problems, and their potential for creating a vast array of unforeseen and surprising illnesses. He also sheds light on how the corruption within the U.S. government, the FDA, and the GMO industry has allowed, and perpetuated, the cover-up.
Diet for a Dying Planet
In India, the benefits of modern agriculture come with a high price. It's been reported as many as 150,000 Indian farmers over the past decade have committed suicide - many by drinking the pesticides they put on their crops. According to physicist and social activist Vandana Shiva, the farmers' despair is due to the weight of overwhelming debt. They can no longer afford the escalating price of chemicals and bio-engineered seeds, like pest-resistant Bt cotton. Shiva says the suicides in India are only part of a global problem that can be traced to the way food is produced.
Replace Drug Monopolies with Prizes
While we pay staggering premiums for drug monopolies, only a modest amount is actually reinvested in R&D. In 2005, only 8.5 percent of global pharmaceutical sales were spent on R&D, and only a fraction of that was invested in products that improved health care outcomes. The high prices also present enormous hardships for patients and their families, and expensive obligations on the employers and taxpayers who pay for medicines. Often people don't even get new drugs that would help them, because the patient can't pay, or the insurance company, employer or family doesn't want to pay. On Friday Senator Sander introduced a bill called the Medical Innovation Prize Fund Act of 2007 that would provide a profound change in the way we finance new drugs.
WHO to Debate Prizes, Not Patents, for pharmaceutical drugs
Two proposals to challenge long-standing patent rules will be debated this week at a meeting of governments drawing up policies aimed at bringing useful and affordable medicines to the developing world, The Financial Times writes.
A coalition of non-governmental organizations and developing countries is calling for “patent pools” to combine intellectual property rights on existing medicines, and a “prize fund” to stimulate discovery of drugs for neglected diseases. Both initiatives face strong opposition from some developed countries and the pharmaceutical industry.
Crestor Fails to prevent heart deaths in elderly
Astra Zeneca's statin drug Crestor failed to reduce heart deaths in older people, according to a recent study. Although Crestor’s cholesterol-lowering ability has long been documented, the so-called CORONA study was the first to test whether the 4-year-old drug, which is known generically as rosuvastatin, actually improved patient outcomes.Statin drugs such as Crestor and Lipitor are a scam, and a very expensive one at that.
Failed anti-cholesterol drug significantly raised heart death rate
The official wall of silence surrounding the failure of Pfizer's artery-scrubbing drug torceptrapib lifted Monday, when researchers released a major study, called Illuminate, showing the drug sharply increased the rate of heart disease deaths.
Torceptrapib was the first of several new drugs that researchers believed would help clear deposits from arteries by boosting levels of artery-scrubbing good cholesterol, or HDL. Although torceptrapib reached a milestone HDL increase of 72%, compared with just 15% for the most potent cholesterol-lowering statin, the rate of heart attacks and other deadly events rose by 25%. Deaths rose by 40%, the researchers reported.Our screwed-up pharmaceutical paradigm requires new drugs to be substantially different from both natural substances and from existing drugs, pushing researchers in the direction of ever more dangerous interference with the natural biological pathways and mechanisms of the human body. No wonder we find more and more deadly effects when testing the drugs.
Merck Agrees to Pay $4.85 Billion for Vioxx Claims
Damien Conover, an analyst at Morningstar, is skeptical: He said the cases included in the settlement are likely the weakest cases. "They're trying to reduce the uncertainty surrounding the costs related to Vioxx. While it will probably bring a little more clarity, I think there are still going to be a lot of cases that won't settle within this agreement."
Orthopedic Surgeons' Buck-raking Exposed
Nearly 50 orthopedic surgeons, many affiliated with the nation’s top teaching hospitals, each earned over $1 million a year in consulting contracts and royalties from the five companies that make artificial knees and hips. The payment disclosures were posted on the companies’ websites last week as part of a $311 million anti-kickback settlement between four of the firms and the U.S. attorney for northern New Jersey.
Medical School professors Richard D. Scott and Thomas S. Thornhill had the largest physician consulting arrangements disclosed by the companies, receiving $6.7 million each since the beginning of 2007 from DePuy Orthopaedics. (The Harvard Crimson)Ts ts ts ts ts.
Killing with care, studying the endpoint of death
It could be a vaccine trial in Africa that infects people with a synthetic, engineered DNA virus meant to resemble the collection of proteins they call HIV, or a burning gel microbicide meant for African women's vagina, or the industry favorite, a comparison of one antiretroviral with another, playing doctor with gay American or European men, to see which one kills better, faster.
Killing with HIV treatments has become a pastime of academic professionals, and professional lab cats employed by big pharmaceutical companies. The higher the pay, the more fun the killing, and the more recognition by the peers.
South African President Mbeki regrets dropping AIDS debate
Mbeki challenged the conventional wisdom of treating AIDS sufferers with toxic medicines and he was crucified in scientific circles and the press. His biographer says that he regrets having dropped the debate at the time. The government of South Africa, which has instituted a comprehensive AIDS policy, including delivery of the controversial anti-retroviral medicines, says it has Mbeki's backing.
SSRI in Finnish Shooting case?
The headlines in the Finnish Press (below) discuss a shooting rampage by an 18-year old High School student, Pekka-Eric Auvinen. Before killing six students, the head teacher and a nurse, and turning the gun on himself, Auvinen indicated that he "ate SSRI antidepressants" which, he said, made him feel "aggressive."
One can only speculate why major news outlets outside of Finland--CNN, Yahoo, Reuters, BBC--failed to report all facts provided by the Finnish sources--including Auvinen's own statements in a video on YouTube about his unsuccessful treatment with SSRIs.Psychiatric drugs seem to have been involved in practically every major shooting incident, where a lone, crazed psychopath has killed others and, often, himself as well.
Mental Screening Dragnet Targets "every fifth-grader and ninth grader"
... the real winners are the manufacturers of psychotropic drugs who are the covert sponsors of mental screening campaigns. With absolutely no evidence of a benefit for children, and every reason to be extremely suspicious of subjective, rigged questionnaire designed to stir self-doubt in impressionable children--this is a mental illness expansion program.
'Bipolar' Explosion: Children need protection
The unprecedented--40-fold increase--in the labeling of US children with this highly controversial diagnosis has been recently documented by Dr. Mark Olfson and colleagues reporting in the Archives of General Psychiatry, 2007. Bipolar is a newly manufactured disorder for children. It was not recognized prior to the mid 1990 when the new neuroleptics--a.k.a. 'atypical antipsychotics' came on the market.
Brazilian land activist killed in dispute over experimental GM farm
For Syngenta, which was formed from an alliance of Novartis and Astra Zenica, the episode has turned into nightmare of accusation and counter-accusation amid suspicion that it gave free rein to an armed militia to protect its lands as it develops GM corn and maize seed for the expanding Brazilian market.
"Here we have a European company, Syngenta, effectively going around shooting people on its farm," said Sarah Wilson of Christian Aid which helps fund the Movement of Landless Workers (MST) in Brazil.
UK Government's Dirty GM Secrets
Publicly, ministers claim to be neutral over GM. But the documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act show otherwise. One set obtained by the campaigning group GM Freeze clearly demonstrate that the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) had allowed the biotech giant BASF to effectively set the conditions for field trials it has conducted on modified potatoes.
UN 'Right to Food' Rapporteur Urges 5 Year Moratorium on Biofuels
United Nations Special Rapporteur on the right to food, Jean Ziegler, has called for a 5-year moratorium on biofuel production. This recommendation was contained in his interim report submitted to the UN General Assembly, which met in October 2007. He stressed that rushing to turn food crops — maize, wheat, sugar, palm oil — into fuel for cars, without first examining the impact on global hunger, would be a recipe for disaster. Among the potential impacts identified are increasing food prices, increasing competition over land and forests, forced evictions, impacts on employment and conditions of work, and increasing prices and scarcity of water.
Video: Dr George Carlo about the danger of wi-fi in schools
Neither cell phones nor WIFI base stations were pre-market tested before being sold. Conditions that are a result of the wireless blanketing we now see in schools are due to a disruption of intercellular communication. There is a direct impact on cognition, ability to learn, ability to focus and to retain information. Behavioral problems in schools are also related to WIFI.
Voting As Political Narcotic
Voting especially lesser-evil voting sustains our fake democracy more than any other citizen action. It lets politicians claim that they represent the sovereign people. It tells the world that our elected government has public support. Voting sends the wrong message to everyone. No matter who you vote for, voting says the political system is fair. It is not.
This is what America's political freedom has morphed into: Dissidents free to protest (to make us feel good). Elites free to control (to maintain corruption). Conned citizens free to vote (to keep the system looking democratic). And most Americans free to borrow, spend and consume (to stay hooked on work, antidepressants, sleeping pills, alcohol, sports, computers, religion, gambling and illegal drugs). Where do you fit in?
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More information out there...
There is much I cannot cover but other sources for this kind of information exist and are active.
The Alternative Medicine Yahoo Group is another great place to get information on what is happening in the world of nutrition and other natural health options.
For the influence of electromagnetic waves from radio, mobile phones and other radio emitting devices, check out the emfrefugee group on Yahoo.
If you are interested in a different take on the news that isn't health centered but is certainly fun, check out Robin Good TV News.
Some more sites to keep up to date with the other side of world affairs, the stuff you won't find on tv:
And remember ...
"The individual is supreme and finds its way through intuition."
posted by Sepp Hasslberger on Sunday November 11 2007
updated on Wednesday August 15 2012
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