TOWP Health Archives: October - 2017

October 31, 2017. Imagine consuming 30 teaspoons of sugar for your lunch. Experts at the University of  London say that's exactly what many of us are doing when we opt for 'high street meal deals' a Sandwich - sweet or crisp & drink.  Tesco's meal-deals contain 30 teaspoons of sugar, WHSmith, 30. Co-Op 26, Morrison's 24, Marks and Spencer's 20, and Sainsbury's meal deals have 20 teaspoons of sugar. A campaign group now want unhealthy deals to be banned. BBC 1 News.

October 31, 2017. A US Federal court has blocked the Trump administrations ban on transgender people serving in the armed forces. Mr Trump said he's introducing the ban in July. BBC World Service: Outlook News.

October 30, 2017A cancer charity Macmillan has appointed a digital nurse to try to counter fake news about diseases on the internet. According to McMillan, two out of five people diagnosed with cancer, go to the internet to find information about their condition, and what they're finding is highly unreliable. There are for example complete inaccurate claims that baking soda is a cure for cancer, and that more people die of chemotherapy than die of cancer. The digital nurse Ellen McPake will be based at the charities office on Glasgow, and via social media and the charities website, she will answer questions from cancer patients in the UK. BBC Radio 2 News.

October 30, 2017In the UK, eating Horse meat is a controversial issue, because very little Horse meat is consumed by humans. Its a similar story in the US and Australia. But globally every year, about 5 million Horses are slaughtered every year, and 725,000 tonnes of Horse meat is produced according to the food and agriculture organisation of the UN. China is the biggest producer accounting for about a 3rd of that, followed by Kazakhstan, Mexico and Russia. Many European countries also have an apatite for Horse meat too, including Italy and France. BBC World Service: Food Chain.

October 30, 2017NHS pressured our kids to change sex: Transgender backlash as desperate parents accuse overzealous therapists of 'blindly accepting' children's claims to have been born in the wrong body. Parents are concerned that clinic staff are 'blindly accepting' children's claims. Campaign group Transgender Trend receives pleas for help from parents. One mother was stunned when a 15-year-old girl was referred to a specialist transgender clinic after a consultation of just 40 minutes. Daily Mail.

October 29, 2017Many people 'are not properly cleaning their anuses': Doctors warn toilet paper does little to remove faeces - and we should all be using wet wipes. Dry toilet paper can leave behind faeces or cause someone to excessively wipe. Over wiping can create anal fissures or irritate haemorrhoids in the rectum. Bidets in toilets are popular in Spain, Italy and Greece but aren't found as often in some countries. Daily Mail.

October 29, 2017Plans to create a vast new sanctuary for marine life in East Antarctica have failed.  International experts meeting in Tasmania had been expected to establish a protected area. Campaigners had hoped that the annual meeting would establish a protected area covering a million square kilometres of Eastern Antarctica. The remainder countries could not reach the necessary consensus. Its understood Russia and China expressed concerns about fishing rights. BBC News

October 28, 2017Dr Google: I'm feeling yucky. This week Google unveiled its new symptom cards, which will pop to the top of your search results the next time you try to search for your various ailments. Currently only on the Apple or Android Google apps, this feature will eventually be available through web browser searches too. Google developed its symptom cards with the help of doctors at Harvard medical school and the Mayo Clinic.Celine Gounder. Guardian.

October 28, 2017  Emergency services are trying to identify the source of a smell which is being likened to burning plastic which was reported in Seaford, East Sussex, UK. Residents were told to stay indoors and keep their windows closed. BBC Radio 1 News.

October 27, 2017.  USA President Donald Trump has called on Americas pain-killer addiction crisis 'a national shame'. He declared it a 'public health emergency'. Mr Trump announced a plan to target the abuse of opioids which kill more than 140 Americans every day. Presenter Steve Wright Radio 2.

October 27, 2017. New research suggests open heart surgery is safer in the afternoon, then in the morning because of the bodies internal clock. The report published in the Lancet says the heart is generally stronger and better able to withstand surgery in the afternoon, than in the morning. BBC Radio 2. News.

October 26, 2017The NHS are piloting a scheme for a 'care B&B scheme' for some home-owners who will be paid $50.00 a day, and up to a thousand pounds to host NHS patients with the hope to stop bed-blocking in a "airbnb-style" scheme. ITV This Morning. The NHS said, they wont go ahead with the trial, until safety measures are in place. Smooth radio.

October 25, 2017The World Health Organisation has recommended a new vaccine against typhoid fever. Experts believe the vaccine is so effective, it could help eliminate the disease altogether. Unlike other typhoid vaccines, the new treatment works in children. Typhoid, a highly contagious bacteria spreads through contaminated food and water and kills around 200.000 people every year.BBC News.

October 25, 2017Climate is not to blame for the loss of insects. It might be habitat fragmentation, loss of habitat. It's an ecological catastrophe with far-reaching consequences.  We can all do this - plant wild flowers. It is important to have flowers throughout the year. Don't manicure or weed stuff out. Ivy, very important - let it grow. Autumn flowers are vital to encourage insects back even if you don't have a garden, grow them in pots.Find more information at our website. BBC 1 Autumnwatch.

October 25, 2017Are you vitamin D deficient? 6 signs even your doctor might miss. A simple test and supplement could help. 1. You get frequent infections. Vitamin D is vital to the health of the immune system. 2. You’re depressed, especially in winter. Vitamin D is understood to play a key role in maintaining healthy levels of serotonin in the brain. You’re literally always tired. Vitamin D is essential for converting food into energy. You have joint pains or weak bones. Vitamin D is essential to help regulate calcium and phosphate levels in the body, giving it a key role in the functioning of joints, muscles and teeth and adequate levels help ward off osteomalacia (soft bones) and osteoporosis (loss of bone density) in later life. 5. Your muscles hurt. Vitamin D supports muscle function because receptors for it are located all over the body, including in the muscles. Others at risk of deficiency include the elderly who are housebound and in care homes. Office workers who spend most of their days inside. People who cover up for religious purposes. People who work night shifts and sleep during the day. Anyone whose lifestyle prevents them from getting outside regularly. Daily Mail.

October 14, 2017Stop overusing antibiotics or more people will die, that's the warning from England's Chief medical officer. ITV News.

October 13, 2017There have been more warnings about the NHS who are facing another winter crisis. The health secretary made a startling admission that family doctors 'were knackered' because of over-work. He tells experts, he feared hospitals could be overwhelmed by an outbreak of flu. ITV News.

October 12, 2017The southern health NHS trust has been fined 125.000 pounds for failing to provide safe care at Melbury Lodge in Winchester. it admitted failing to stop vulnerable patients climbing onto a roof in which one man fell two years ago and another absconded to France. The trust said, lack of money had prevented it from carrying out a proper risk assessment. BBC Radio 2 News.

October 12, 2017. The flu jab is such a good thing to have. You may get some common side effects like a headache, runny nose, loss of appetite, general tiredness but it should settle within a couple of days. There is nearly a million percent chance of getting a severe reaction is so low, and the risk of getting the flu and getting pneumonia or bronchitis is worse. Dr Sara. ITV This Morning.

October 12, 2017The only people now who have to be careful with eggs are under a medically supervised diet. If you go back 30 years there was an epidemic issue around salmonella worldwide. Since then lots of measures have been taken. Vaccinations of hens, better control on farms. Keeping eggs cool from the point at which there collected and sold. All of these things have come together and reduced the risk of salmonella and were now confident to say eggs are safe to eat. We've not been able to give the same advice for all eggs from other sources such as ducks or hens egg. So if you're in a vulnerable group, cook the egg well.  RNIB Connect: Early Edition.

October 11, 2017Some of the worlds biggest car makers are investigating whether they may have inadvertently used sub standard materials in products including vehicles sold in the UK. The Japanese manufacturer Kobe Steel admitted it falsified quality control data. BBC News.


October 11, 2017. Pregnant women, children and the elderly can safely eat runny or raw eggs carrying a British Lion mark, according to official guidance that ends three decades of health fears. The new policy from the Food Standards Agency (FSA) reverses guidance introduced after a scare over eggs in 1988 and follows a steep fall in the level of salmonella in hens and the number of human infections.Salmonella bacteria can cause food poisoning, which is particularly risky for vulnerable people including pregnant women. More than 30.000 people a year were infected in the lte  1960s and early 1990s, with contaminated eggs among the main sources. Times.

October 10, 2017. The prime minister is saying, they have nowhere to hide as she launches the first ever audit into racial disparity. It will look at how people who are black, and ethnic minorities are treated across areas like health, education and housing. It also reveals they're more than twice as likely to be out of work as white adults. RNIB Connect: Early Edition.

October 10, 2017Britain's chief medical officer is demanding an end to the title 'junior doctor'. Dame Sally Davies says, the label is demeaning and confusing and is often refers to qualified doctors with years of experience. She's backing a campaign by Oxford academics to banish the term. Sky News.

October 9, 2017Declaring your sex could be optional in the next census under proposals aimed at recognising transgender people. News.

October 9, 2017Carbon monoxide readings go up and down. It depends on the time of year, which way the winds blowing, whether you're in the north or south hemisphere. That's going on nearby, whether that's local industries pumping out C02, or forests sucking it up, but after accounting for this variation, background levels of C02 have been going up by 2 parts per million every year. BBC World Service: Crowd Science.

October 9, 2017How can your brain, body and your cells follow time? Instead of having cogs and have gene activity that waxes and waves over the of course of the day, that's how the body keeps time. The discovery made by this trio of scientists relates to the core genes that control time in the human body. Although their research was initially in fruit flies, my analogy is, if you think about your central heating at home, you got the thermostat on and the boiler kicks in, the radiators come on and start to warm up, and when it gets too warm, the boiler clicks on and then it stops. That's how these genes work inside cells, so looking at fruit flies, they discovered a gene called 'period', and it produced a protein, and as that protein builds up it eventually turns off the gene, so it works like your thermostats and that causes the level of  protein to obsolete over the course of 24 hours and there you go, you've built a clock inside your body. The same genes and the same mechanism is found not only in the fruit flies, but all animals, plants, fungi, pretty much everything on earth keeps time with day and night using this cellular mechanism. BBC World Service: Science In Action.

October 8, 2017. When we cook tomatoes, they release a compound called lycopene. A recent study showed lycopene can prevent DNA damage to the skin. BBC 1: How To Stay Young.

October 8, 2017
Precessed foods such as meat that's been either smoked, cured or slated, or other preservatives have been added to it. Eating too much processed meat accelerates our ageing. Its high in saturated fats and salts which raises our blood pressure, and increases our risk of strokes. BBC 1: How To Stay Young.

October 8, 2017Monkey Pox was first discovered in monkeys, but the disease can be transmitted to humanfrom a range of wild animal especially when they are killed and eaten. Monkey pox is a cousin of small pox, like small pox, victims exhibited a blistering rash. But Monkey pox is a much milder disease. According to the who (World Health Organisation), fatality rates are between 1 and 10 percent. Monkey pox also has a much lower rate of transmission from human to human. There have been no reports of fatalities from this latest outbreak so far. BBC News.

October 8, 2017PCBs and PBDEs are persistent organic pollutants. These are chemicals which were made up in the 50s and 60s have since been banned, but the plastics are still in our oceans. We looked at all the fishes and they had extraordinary high levels of contaminates. Everything that goes into the sea sinks. It can only sink to the deepest point and then it has nowhere else to go, so the deepest parts of the world are basically accumulating more and more plastics. The disposable use of plastics is horrendous. Your not going to take out microfibers from the sediments across the entire pacific ocean, but we could stop putting more in. BBC World Service: Science In Action.

October 7, 2017. In thinking about species responses to Climate change, there are lots of places in the world that's going to benefit, and lots of species that will benefit, because the climate will become warmer for them and the conditions they prefer, so wherever you are in the world, if your thinking about how butterflies are responding, then in some parts of the world they could be getting warmer, expanding and shifting their ranges, and those locations will become more species-rich. But the downside is, in other parts it will become unsuitable and they will disappear, so we do a mixture of both looking and recording where things are going extinct, as well as looking to see where things are colonising and turning up for the first time.  BBC World Service:: Science in Action.

October 7, 2017. California's deadly 'hepatitis A' outbreak could last years, official says. Amid prevention and control efforts in California, the CDC says the state's hepatitis A outbreak could still last months, even years. San Diego and Los Angeles both declared public health emergencies last month. People infected with hepatitis A don't always show symptoms, and even when they do, it can take weeks for them to appear, helping the disease spread undetected. There have been 569 diagnosed cases of hepatitis A and 17 deaths linked to the outbreak since it began in November 2016. Daily Mail.

October 7, 2017The Republic of Ireland's abortion laws are very conservative. Abortion is banned unless a pregnant woman is about to die. And a woman who has one faces 14 years in jail, even in cases of rape or when the foetus isn't viable, abortion is legal. The country will soon vote on whether to change this. Unreported World. Channel 4.

October 6, 2017The E.U announce measures worth half a billion pounds to help improve the health of our oceans. Sky News.

October 6, 2017Nigeria's health ministry has warned people to avoid eating monkeys, rats, squirrels and other wild animals known locally as bush meat. The announcement follows a suspected outbreak of the rare viral disease, Monkey Pox. Radio 2 News.

October 6, 2017Hair turns grey as a result of the pigment cells in the hair follicle, not working properly.  The hair bulb slows melanin production as a result of age and stress, and you can turn grey overnight. Plus,  the length of the growing phase of hair shortens as you age. Each hair follicle grows a completely new hair about 20 times in a lifetime, and hair structure is the same, no matter whose head it's on. Presenter Steve Wright: Radio 2.

October 6, 2017Australia and New Zealand have had the worst outbreak of flu in years, and as winter approached in other parts of the world, people in at-risk-groups are getting injected with this year's vaccine. The vaccine is different every year based on the best guess of which type of flu is likely to be circulating, but this could be about to change with the first widespread human trial of a new kind of vaccine. (a universal flu vaccine). Last years flu vaccine worked quite well for younger people, but the people who tend to die from flu are the elderly. Claudia Hammond:  BBC Health Check.

October 5, 201740 percent of women experience hair thinning or hair loss before, during or after the menopause. Most drugs cause hair loss. Crash dieting can cause temporary hair loss. Everybody sheds between 40, and 150 strands per day. Steve Wright: Radio 2.

October 5, 2017. Prince Charles has used his speech to warn about the threats of plastics to the ocean and marine life. He said something had to be done to reduce the amount of plastic entering the sea every year, estimated to be about 80 million tonnes. Radio 2 News.  Where ever you swim, there are particles of plastic near you and were very close to reaching the point when every wild fish you eat will contain plastic. Plastic is indeed now on the menu.  Prince Charles. Radio 2.

October 5, 2017All Britons may soon have to ‘opt out’ if they do not want their organs to be donated after death. Theresa May yesterday announced plans to make it easier for doctors in England to take organs for transplants without explicit consent. In Wales, consent for organ donation is already presumed while people in England must still sign up to say they are happy for their organs to be used. Downing Street said the consultation document for England will be brought out in the next few weeks. Daily Mail.

October 5, 2017How housing affects well being. How much space do we need to be happy? It depends on who you are, your past experience and social context of which you were bought up in. If you grow up in a  society where everyone has dinner party's, and you don't have the space to do that, that will inhibit your ability to fit in, and if you don't fit in is very detrimental to our well being. If you live in a society where other people have very little space like Hong Hong, then your going to require a lower level of living space that someone who's grown up in a very space heavy society like the US. In densely populated cities like Tokyo, many people live in an apartment less than 10 square meters. That may explain why one-third of Japanese live alone. Chris Foye. The University Of Reading. BBC World Service: The Why Factor.

October 4, 2017Every Londoner is exposed to dangerously high levels of toxic air pollution on a daily basis, research revealed today. The polluted is acknowledged by scientists as having the greatest impact on health, increasing the likelihood of both respiratory and cardiovascular diseases. Children growing up are more likely to grow up with reduced lung function and develop asthma. Calls have been made to tackle the dangerous emissions in most polluted parts of the capitol. Other sources of pollution were from vehicle tyre and brake wear, construction sites and wood burning stoves. Evening Standard.

October 4, 2017Drug-giant raided over side-effects. The Lyon factory of German drug maker was raided by police yesterday over concerns that changes to a thyroid drug used by 3 million people in France have led to severe side-effects. Public health officers are investigating complaints that a new version of Levrothyrox causes memory loss, hair loss, weight gain and palpitations. Merck is accused of deceiving patients by changing the formula. It said it was ready to help investigators. Metro News.

October 4, 2017
A little girl was saved from life-threatening cancer when a holiday snaps showed a ghostly white blur in her eye. Luckily, her parents saw the reflection in her right pupil. She was found to have retinoblastoma in both eyes but survived because it was found early.She is now in remission after chemo. She can see from her left eye, but a tumour in her right will remain because of its perilous position. Sun News.


October 3, 2017. Bags for life can spread deadly bacteria if they are re-used for both raw and 'ready to eat' food, watchdogs have warned. Food safety watchdogs advise shoppers to use separate bags to carry their meat. The Food Standards Agency said they should be colour-coded to avoid mix-ups. Even the outside of raw meat packaging can be contaminated with harmful bugs. Fabric bags for life should be washed regularly, the watchdogs recommend. Daily Mail


October 3, 2017£70 million pounds is lost every year in England due to unnecessary long-term antidepressant use. The criticism is not to do with drugs. People get put on the drugs, they get parked on the drugs, and they get left on the drugs. Billion Dollar Deals. BBC2

October 2, 2017Muscles play an important role in ageing. They are our bodies largest store of amino acids, the building blocks of our organs and tissues. When were ill or injured, its muscles that supply the amino acids needed to heal. Lower muscle mass increase risk of early death. As we age, and we lose muscle, we get an inability to carry out tasks of everyday living, this increases our risk of frailty and falls, and ultimately lower levels of muscle mass in old age are associated with early. death. An American study has shown how exercise helps us keep high levels of muscle as we age. If you don't do anything, you can lose up to 40% of your muscles as you age. How To Stay Young. BBC 1.

October 2, 1017Post Polio syndrome. Unfortunately it effects up to 1 in 3, to 3 in 4 people who've had Polio can get Post Polio syndrome, and the usual length of time before your diagnosed is 35 years, but it can be up to 70 years after you originally had the symptom. Sometimes, It does take that long for the motor neurons, which are the nerve cells that control movement, rather than sensation to wear out. Dr Sarah Jarvis. Radio 2.

October 2, 2017Having a kiss and a cuddle is a great way to improve your happiness. It has been voted Britain's number one simple pleasure, a head of laughing with others, having clean sheets on the bed and stroking a pet. Other things which give us a boost is, grabbing a bargain, receiving complements, hearing from old friends and lazy Sunday was also one of the everyday joys. Metro News.

October 2, 2017More dentists plan to leave the NHS in the next five years. Of the 1,212 quizzed in a British poll, almost 60% plan to go private, move overseas, or retire in the face of under-funding. Metro News.

October 1, 2017. The future of Waste. Some scientists envisage the ultimate recycling solution where just about everything we throw away is re-purposed into another material, useful material, maybe even food. Everything can be used. What's not recycled is turned into a fuel, which gets sent to a power station which generates 25 megawatts of electricity. the spare heat left over is pumped around the Southwark flats where we just collected the waste from. The stones which don't burn is turned into road building materials. To turn rubbish into food we will allow micro-organisms to do that. These will now selectively take from the waste what they like, what they get energy from, and in that process, they will also secrete certain substances that one can use like plastics, and if this is done very safe,  food. The idea being is to turn to substance A into substance B. Another microbe will eat substance C and so on. BBC Radio 4. Inside Science.

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