Researchers at Johns Hopkins are reporting what is believed to be the first conclusive evidence in men that the long-term ill effects of vitamin D deficiency are amplified by lower levels of the key sex hormone estrogen, but not testosterone.

In a national study in 1010 men, to be presented Nov. 15 at the American Heart Association’s (AHA) annual Scientific Sessions in Orlando, researchers say the new findings build on previous studies showing that deficiencies in vitamin D and low levels of estrogen, found naturally in differing amounts in men and women, were independent risk factors for hardened and narrowed arteries and weakened bones. ...continue reading Heart and Bone Damage from Low Vitamin D Tied to Declines in Sex Hormones

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Dark chocolate as a remedy for emotional stress receives new support from a clinical trial published online in ACS’ Journal of Proteome Research: Gut Microbiota, and Stress-Related Metabolism in Free-Living Subjects. Men and women who ate just over an ounce and a quarter of dark chocolate a day for two weeks showed reduced levels of stress hormones in their bodies. Dark chocolate consumption also partially corrected other stress-related biochemical imbalances.

...continue reading Dark Chocolate Reduces Emotional Stress, Study Finds

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Scientists at Oregon State University and Linus Pauling Institute propose in an article published October 7 that sulforaphane, a compound found in cruciferous vegetables notably broccoli, may be useful as a chemopreventive agent for high-risk prostate cancer patients. Sulforaphane, Emily Ho and colleagues write, acts as a histone deacetylase inhibitor on prostate cancer (and colorectal cancer) cells.
...continue reading Broccoli compound may aid survival for high-risk prostate cancer patients

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Oleocanthal, a naturally-occurring compound found in extra-virgin olive oil, alters the structure of neurotoxic proteins believed to contribute to the debilitating effects of Alzheimer's disease. This structural change impedes the proteins' ability to damage brain nerve cells.

...continue reading Olive Oil Ingredient May Help Prevent, Treat Alzheimer’s

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"Tainted Meat: The Sickening of Stephanie Smith" in today's New York Times health section looks at how the meat industry is allowed to police itself while feeding untested meat scraps, or "trim," into supposedly tested ground beef supplies before selling to the customer.

Unfortunately, the US House of Representatives has already voted to pass a bill that makes it harder for small and organic food producers to compete with the industrial food giants that source some of the worst food-borne illness outbreaks.

Stephanie Smith, a 20 year-old dance instructor, became violently ill after eating a single home-cooked beef hamburger made from tainted beef. Stephanie Smith, a 20 year-old dance instructor, became violently ill after eating a single home-cooked beef hamburger made from tainted beef. Stephanie is now in a wheelchair and may never walk again. How can one meat sandwich do this to a healthy young woman?
...continue reading Tainted Food and the Food Industry

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On March 23, 2009, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration asked Irvington, N.J.-based Westco Fruit and Nut Co., Inc. (Westco/Westcott) to voluntarily recall all of its products containing peanuts from Peanut Company of America (PCA) because of the contamination threat. Incredibly, Westco/Westcott refused. On April 8, 2009, the FDA served Westco/Westcott with an inspection warrant in an attempt to gain access to the company’s distribution records.

On April 27, 2009, at the request of the FDA, U.S. Marshals seized $34,500 worth of PCA peanuts and products containing PCA peanuts at Westco/Westcott because of possible Salmonella contamination. Not long after, PCA went bankrupt and declared it could not afford to warn or reach any of its customers.

This short video looks at the anatomy of a peanut outbreak. It may be of interest to older adults as well as to families with small children aqnd to pet-owners who may handle peanut-contaminated food. It may be especially relevant for people who have reduced immune systems.

ANATOMY OF AN OUTBREAK (wmv file 5:26 -- will open as video in Windows Media Player, or save to disk)

LINKS

FDA's Peanut Products Recall & Investigation

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