Friday, August 22, 2014

Health News

I write three blogs per week. One of those, Wisdom Wednesday, comes from my clinical experience. The other two are from reviewing recently published studies on human health.

I spend some time virtually every day searching the internet for interesting research. I hope that the studies I write about have some impact and meaning for you personally. It is not always easy to find research worthy of review. Sometimes I go several days without finding a good study, then I might find two or three great reports at one sitting.

Today, I thought I would review a few of the rejects, studies that didn’t make the cut. All of these studies were published on Medline Today by the NIH (National Institutes of Health). It is, without question, my best source of information. I also look at WebMD, the New York Times, CBS News, and even Fox News. These are from the past week and a just a sample of the studies funded, conducted, and published on a daily basis:

  • Employees Benefit from Natural Light, Study Finds
  • Natural Lighting Brightens Nurses’ Outlook, Study Says
  • Good Neighbors are Good for Your Heart, Study Says
  • Health Tip: Practice a Well-Balanced Exercise Program- Don’t focus on just one form of activity.
  • Lunch Box Hygiene Helps Prevent Foodborne Illness, Expert Says
  • Many Seniors Get Unnecessary Cancer Tests - Screening should not be done when patients have less than a 10-year life expectancy research says.
  • Losing Weight May Help Against Osteoarthritis – Too much weight can strain joints.
  • Nearly 1 in 5 American Adults Consume at Least One Soda Per Day: CDC – Mississippi is the highest at 32%.
  • Popular Southern Fare May Harm Your Kidneys, Study Finds – Fatty, sugary foods run risk of death due to organ problems.
  • Many Shift Workers Use Drugs to Sleep, Stay Awake, Study Finds
  • Study Hints at Link Between Poor Sleep, Suicide Risk – But fails to shows a direct cause and effect relationship.
  • Forty Percent of Americans Will Develop Diabetes, CDC Predicts
I hesitated to include the last one because it is such an important issue. It’s just that the jury returned this verdict long ago. Why would the CDC make such a redundant announcement at this time? Besides, I believe the numbers are too low, it’s at least 50% of those currently alive.

There was also another study questioning the value of statin drugs. Although that is also old news, the drug industry, American Heart Association, and American Cardiologist Association have not yet shifted their position. That topic needs to be reiterated.

The Ebola viral outbreak is the most popular topic in health news over the course of the past few weeks. I wish that the interest was in the health of those living in Africa that are at high risk. However, I believe that the public is easily distracted by focusing on a health issue that won’t affect them directly rather than deal with the very real health dangers we face ourselves.

A very small percentage of the research published on health care really advances the science. I suppose that is what gives me the drive and the material to write this blog. I will continue to try and find those pearls, both good and bad, to illuminate. I hope you continue to read along.

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