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Why food and drug addiction aren’t so far apart.

first_img Share Food & DiningLifestyle Why food and drug addiction aren’t so far apart. by: – April 8, 2011 Sharing is caring! Share Tweetcenter_img I recently wrote about my compulsive dark-chocolate M&M eating and mentioned the fascinating story about food addiction that science journalist Rachael Moeller Gorman wrote for the April issue of EatingWell Magazine.In a nutshell: People who chronically crave food aren’t so different from those who suffer drug and alcohol addictions. This week, I read another new study—in the Archives of General Psychiatry—that backs the notion that, for some people, chocolate and other particularly delicious foods might stimulate the brain in ways similar to cocaine.In this study, researchers at Yale University’s Rudd Center for Food Policy & Obesity asked 48 women to take a quiz that measured their “food addiction.”Using high-tech scans, the researchers looked at the subjects’ brain activity after they were shown, and then after they drank, a chocolate milkshake. They found that brain activity of subjects who scored higher on the food-addiction quiz looked similar to what’s been observed in drug addicts: there was more activity in regions associated with cravings and less in areas that control urges.So how do you know if your relationship with food is just normal cravings or if you might have a more serious food addiction? People talk about being “addicted to sugar,” “addicted to potato chips” and, probably most commonly, “addicted to chocolate.”But people who chronically crave food, like those with alcohol and drug addictions, are highly conditioned to abuse their substance of choice, Nora Volkow, M.D., director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) told Gorman when she talked with her for EatingWell‘s April issue.If thinking about food rules your life, seek help from a professional. But if you’re someone dealing with occasional cravings, restructuring your day and planning ahead can help you resist overwhelming temptation.Even if you have a tendency to become “addicted” to food, you can combat overeating. Here are some tricks:1. Plan meals and snacks. Grazing all day may keep you from getting so hungry that you’ll overeat the next time food is in front of you, but eating on the fly without a plan can also add up to too many calories. Better to plan meals and snacks ahead: decide what you’ll have for breakfast, lunch and dinner, plus a midafternoon snack. Each time, include a little protein for additional staying power.2. Budget in treats. Studies suggest that feeling deprived—even if you are consuming plenty of calories—can trigger overeating. Banning a food often just makes you think about it more. If chocolate is your downfall, maybe keep it out of the house, so that it’s not around tempting you all the time. Consider making a batch of treats to give to a friend and sampling just one.3. Keep a food diary. Recording everything—the ice cream binge as well as the carrots and celery—“makes everything you eat part of the plan,” Elena Ramirez, Ph.D., co-founder of the Vermont Center for Cognitive Behavior Therapy told EatingWell Magazine. “It’s no longer a sneaky bad thing.” Writing what you bite can also help you lose weight, studies show.4. Stay cool. Being stressed often leads to overindulging. Squelch your stress with exercise: you can schedule daily workouts for a natural high. No time for a gym session? Go for a short walk. A change of scenery is often all you need to think more clearly.  5. Get some sleep. Sleep deprivation increases the risk of overeating and obesity, research shows. The National Sleep Foundation recommends 7 to 9 hours of sleep a night for adults.By Nicci Micco,M.S., editor-at-large for EatingWell Magazine Share 22 Views   no discussionslast_img read more

Anorexia nervosa ‘link to spring birth’

first_img Share HealthLifestyle Anorexia nervosa ‘link to spring birth’ by: – April 28, 2011 Tweet Share Sharing is caring!center_img Share 21 Views   no discussions Spring babies have a slightly higher incidence of anorexia nervosa.Babies born in spring are slightly more likely to develop anorexia nervosa, while those born in the autumn have a lower risk, say researchers.A report published in the British Journal of Psychiatry suggests temperature, sunlight, infection or the mother’s diet could be responsible.Other academics said the effect was small and the disorder had many causes.The researchers analysed data from four previous studies including 1,293 people with anorexia.The researchers found an “excess of anorexia nervosa births” between March and June – for every seven anorexia cases expected, there were in fact eight.There were also fewer than expected cases in September and October.Dr Lahiru Handunnetthi, one of the report’s authors, at the Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics, said: “A number of previous studies have found that mental illnesses such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and major depression are more common among those born in the spring – so this finding in anorexia is perhaps not surprising.Screening methods “However, our study only provides evidence of an association. Now we need more research to identify which factors are putting people at particular risk.”The report suggests seasonal changes in temperature, sunlight exposure and vitamin D levels, maternal nutrition and infections as “strong candidate factors”.Dr Terence Dovey, from the Centre for Research into Eating Disorders, at Loughborough University, said: “Anorexia is a very complex multifaceted disorder,” adding that the study looked at just one aspect.“Should we concentrate screening methods to those born in the winter months? No, we should not. It leaves too much error of margin and the potential significant difference is only small.”BBC Newslast_img read more

Switzerland: Zurich votes to keep assisted suicide

first_img Sharing is caring! Share Share Tweet HealthLifestyle Switzerland: Zurich votes to keep assisted suicide by: – May 16, 2011center_img 12 Views   no discussions Share Exit is Zurich’s biggest assisted suicide organisationVoters in Zurich, Switzerland, have rejected proposed bans on assisted suicide and “suicide tourism”.Some 85% of the 278,000 votes cast opposed the ban on assisted suicide and 78% opposed outlawing it for foreigners, Zurich authorities said.About 200 people commit assisted suicide each year in Zurich, including many foreign visitors.It has been legal in Switzerland since 1941 if performed by a non-physician with no vested interest in the death.Assistance can be provided only in a passive way, such as by providing drugs. Active assistance – helping a person to take or administer a product – is prohibited.‘Last resort’While opinion polls indicated that most Swiss were in favour of assisted suicide, they had also suggested that many were against what has become known as suicide tourism.Many citizens from Germany, France and other nations come to die in Switzerland because the practice remains illegal abroad.One local organisation, Dignitas, says it has helped more than 1,000 foreigners to take their own lives.Another group, Exit, will only help those who are permanently resident in the country – saying the process takes time, and much counselling for both patients and relatives.Its vice-president, Bernhard Sutter, said the result showed Swiss voters believed in “self-determination at the end of life”.The referendum had offered a proposal to limit suicide tourism, by imposing a residency requirement of at least one year in the Zurich area in order to qualify for the service.It was backed by two conservative political parties, the Evangelical People’s Party and the Federal Democratic Union.But the major parties of the left and right, including the Swiss People’s Party and the Social Democratic Party, had called on their supporters to vote against both motions.The BBC’s Imogen Foulkes, in Geneva, says the size of the vote against a ban on assisted suicide reflects the widely held belief among the Swiss that is their individual right to decide when and how to die.Their rejection of the proposal to limit assisted suicide to those living in Zurich shows that concerns about suicide tourism carry less weight with voters than their conviction that the right to die is universal, our correspondent says.But the debate in Switzerland will continue, she adds. Polls show voters do want clearer national legislation setting out conditions under which assisted suicide is permitted.The Swiss government is planning to revise the country’s federal laws on assisted suicide.It has said it is looking to make sure it was used only as a last resort by the terminally ill, and to limit suicide tourism.BBC Newslast_img read more

US hospital told to remove life support

first_imgA Texas judge has ordered a hospital to remove the life support of a brain-dead woman being kept alive because she is pregnant.Judge RH Wallace gave John Peter Smith Hospital until Monday evening to cease life-saving measures for Marlise Munoz.Mrs Munoz, 33, was 14 weeks pregnant when she fell unconscious in November. It is believed she had a blood clot.The hospital had argued that a state law prohibits denying life-saving treatment to pregnant patients.‘Legally dead’Mrs Munoz’s husband, Erick, filed suit against the hospital on 14 January, arguing that life-support efforts go against her wishes as a paramedic familiar with end-of-life issues.“Marlise Munoz is legally dead, and to further conduct surgical procedures on a deceased body is nothing short of outrageous,” he claimed in court documents.The court filing also stipulated that, as Mrs Munoz is technically deceased, “she cannot possibly be a ‘pregnant patient’” under Texas health and safety codes.Mrs Munoz, 33, has remained unconscious since her husband discovered her on the kitchen floor on 26 November while pregnant with the couple’s second child.A blood clot has been listed as a possible cause.Mr Munoz’s lawyers subsequently revealed that Mrs Munoz’s foetus – believed to be at 22 weeks gestation and to have been without oxygen for some time before medical intervention in November – was “distinctly abnormal”, according to hospital medical records.On Friday, Judge Wallace ruled the Fort Worth hospital must remove Mrs Munoz’s life support by 17:00 local time (23:00 GMT) on Monday.BBC News Tweet Share 28 Views   no discussions HealthInternationalLifestylePrint US hospital told to remove life support by: – January 25, 2014center_img Sharing is caring! Share Sharelast_img read more

Calm, Positive Family Meals May Help Keep Kids Slim

first_img 303 Views   no discussions Share Positive, calm and friendly family meals might help a child avoid becoming overweight or obese, a new study suggests.Children seem to be less likely to add on extra pounds if their family meals feature pleasant conversation, positive encouragement and no disorder caused by kids acting out, University of Minnesota researchers said. For the study, they watched dozens of hours of video recordings of family meals.“In the households where kids were overweight, there was less of a positive atmosphere at the table,” said study author Jerica Berge, a psychologist at the University of Minnesota. “It was a little more chaotic overall.”The study builds on prior research that has linked frequent family meals to a reduced risk of childhood obesity. Berge and her colleagues decided to figure out what occurs at a family meal that might influence that risk, and whether some family meals might have a more positive effect than others.The researchers asked 120 families to record their meals using iPads, and then studied the video recordings. They noted the length and type of meals served, how family members interacted during meals and how these factors related to a child’s weight.Normal-weight children were more likely to have family meals during which parents offered encouraging statements and everyone seemed to enjoy each other’s company, Berge said.Negativity at the table seemed to be associated with obesity. “You don’t want parents to use family meals as a chance to lecture about getting homework done, or other family problems,” Berge said. “Children did better if meal time was more of a check-in time, connecting around the table with parents and with siblings.”Kids who were overweight had shorter meal times and ate more often in rooms other than the kitchen, the findings showed.For example, 30 percent of meals for overweight kids occurred in the family room, compared to 17 percent for healthy-weight children. On the other hand, 80 percent of the meals of healthy-weight kids occurred in the kitchen, compared with 55 percent for overweight children.However, the meals of overweight kids were not that much shorter than the meals of kids at a healthy weight — an average 13.5 minutes compared with 18.2 minutes.“When we looked at the logistics around the family meals, they are more doable than most people think,” Berge said. “They don’t have to be that long to have a positive effect, and they can be any time of the day — breakfast, lunch or dinner.”Berge believes that regular, positive family meals provide a sense of stability that can influence a child’s eating habits.“It gives the kid a sense of security in the world, and the sense that the kid can regulate their lives, which I believe extends to their ability to regulate eating,” she said. Parents also tended to serve as role models for healthy eating.The researchers also reported that healthy-weight children were more likely to have both parents present at family meals.“In this study, it seems like having that second caregiver helps,” Berge said. “It could be helping keep the chaos under control, or it could be extra modeling, but it did make a difference.”Three out of five families had some type of screen on during the meal, including a TV, cellphone, computer or hand-held video game. Both overweight and healthy-weight children were equally likely to have a screen intruding on the family meal, the study found.The findings were published online Oct. 13 in the journal Pediatrics.The study findings seem to indicate that how parents behave — serving healthy portions, acting as role models — seems to matter as much as other household distractions, said Melinda Sothern, chair of health promotion at the Louisiana State University School of Public Health.“One has to ponder, if a mother and father have the intention of having a family meal, you can almost say the next idea of that is they are going to be better parents in general,” Sothern said. “It’s much easier to drive through a fast-food window, or place the children in front of the TV with a frozen meal.”Although the study found an association between family meal-time routines and kids’ weight, it did not prove a cause-and-effect Food & DiningHealthLifestyle Calm, Positive Family Meals May Help Keep Kids Slim by: – October 22, 2014 Sharecenter_img Tweet Share Sharing is caring!last_img read more

Puerto Rico unveils US$200M cancer treatment, research centre

first_img Share 96 Views   no discussions Tweet HealthInternationalLifestylePrint Puerto Rico unveils US$200M cancer treatment, research centre by: Associated Press – November 17, 2016 SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — Puerto Rico is opening a long-awaited US$200 million cancer treatment and research centre that aims to serve patients across the Western Hemisphere with more affordable treatment than on the US mainland.Governor Alejandro Garcia Padilla said Thursday that the centre will have 96 beds, eight operation rooms, a 24-hour emergency room. He says it will serve as a one-stop shop for all medical services that cancer patients might need.He says scientific research and clinical trials will be top priorities for the nearly 300,000-square-foot (28,000-square-metre) centre. Garcia says scientists will focus on researching cancers that most affect Puerto Ricans and Latin Americans.The centre is scheduled to open in mid-December, more than a decade after it was established as a public corporation.center_img Sharing is caring! Share Sharelast_img read more

No Import Duties on Large Tour Buses

first_img Share Tweet BusinessLifestyleLocalNewsPolitics No Import Duties on Large Tour Buses by: – February 12, 2020 Sharing is caring! Sharecenter_img Share 880 Views   no discussions Hon Denise CharlesImporters of vehicles intended for tourism services will find that duties at the port will be waived.This comes from Hon Minister for Tourism, Denise Charles who tabled a Bill to amend the Excise Tax Act.“In the 2019 budget address, government announced a waiver of duties and taxes on buses for use in the cruise tourism sub-sector,” she began. “Government continues to engage cruise executives as we seek to increase cruse business. So far, our efforts have largely been successful and so to maintain and increase the business, we will take action to improve the quality of service that we deliver to our visitors.”Hon Charles says, “The measure is to remove the excise tax at the point of importation on buses which seat 21-29 people. Th measure is aimed at improving the fleet of buses available for use in tourism tax operations and organized tours. It is also geared at the making the visitor experience more enriching since the larger buses are more comfortable.”This applies to vehicles intended for use in taxi and tours imported between oct 1 2019 and September 20, 2020.last_img read more

WICB directors take critical decisions to advance West Indies cricket development

first_imgST JOHN’S, Antigua (WICB) — The board of directors of the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) met in Antigua on Friday and Saturday and took a number of crucial decisions to advance West Indies cricket development at all levels.Review of the WICB Draft Strategic FrameworkThe board reviewed the Draft Strategic Framework 2011-2016 as prepared by the management of the WICB. The Board made recommendations, additions and amendments which will be incorporated into the framework. The framework will then be shared with key stakeholders in West Indies cricket for their contributions and suggestions.Following the contributions of key stakeholders – players, sponsors, match officials, etc – the Strategic Framework will be brought to the Board of Directors in July for final approval and execution thereafter.Draft Schedule of Cricket 2011-2012Directors reviewed the draft schedule of cricket for the next financial year of the WICB (October 2011 – September 2012) and decided the following:1. The WICB Regional 50 Over Tournament will, as of the 2011-2012 season, be hosted by Territorial Boards on a rotational basis.2. The WICB Regional 50 Over Tournament 2011 scheduled for October (18th to 31st) will be hosted in Guyana.Event MOU between the WICB and Territorial BoardsThe Board approved an Event Memorandum of Understanding between the WICB and Territorial Boards.Umpires pathway and Curators ProgrammeThe Board evaluated and approved an Umpires Pathway for West Indian umpires to advance in their profession and officiate at the highest levels of world cricket.The Board approved the implementation of a Curator’s Programme and has mandated the WICB Management to finalize terms and conditions for the involvement of the ICC Pitch Consultant. The Curators Programme will be designed and executed to for the up-skilling of ground and pitch curators across the region.Policies and codesThe Board of Directors approved the following:1. WICB Communications and Public Relations Policy2. WICB Anti-Doping Code3. WICB Anti-Corruption CodeReportsThe Board received reports from the Chief Executive Officer and on the Scotiabank Kiddy Cricket and Digicel Grassroots Cricket programmes.At the annual general meeting, which took place following the board of directors meetings, Dr Julian Hunte was re-elected unopposed to the presidency of the WICB. Hunte will serve a third consecutive two-year term, ending March 2013.Whycliffe ‘Dave’ Cameron was also re-elected unopposed to the office of vice president. Cameron will also serve his third term in the post.Hunte and Cameron first assumed the offices of president and vice president in July 2007.“We are at a critical stage in West Indies cricket in terms of the setting up the infrastructure to take us forward. As president I am committed to ensuring that the Strategic Framework which we are now refining is implemented and becomes operational during my term,” Hunte said.“The realization of the Cricket Foundation – which we have begun to formulate – is also fundamentally necessary to fund the future growth and development of West Indies cricket,” he added.“We have commenced the process of the development of West Indies cricket at all levels and we must see this process through,” Hunte noted.“Thus far, this Board has had significant progress in the realisation of the Sagicor High Performance Center, a revitalized West Indies A Team programmes, success in Women’s cricket, a widely successful Caribbean Twenty20 and expansion of the Scotiabank Kiddy Cricket and launching of the Digicel Grassroots programmes which will all meld together to ensure future success and that our cricket is strong again at all levels,” he said.Turning his attention to the West Indies senior team, Hunte asserted that the WICB must hold true to the position it adopted towards building a successful West Indies senior team.“We all share in the anguish and disappointment of the fans with the recent performance of our senior team in the Cricket World Cup. Whilst we are happy that the team made it to the quarter-finals we expected a better performance and greater fighting spirit from our players,” he said.“However we need to be honest that we have a lot more work to do to reach the level where the senior team is consistently successful at the international level,” Hunte added. “We remain committed to our policy position adopted in October, 2010 which will guide our planning, preparation and selection.”WICB Selection PolicySelect players with a clear signal that we are building a sideWICB expects a settled ODI team by the year 2013The two year period between 2013 and 2015 is to be used as the final preparation to winning the 2015 ICC Cricket World CupWICB expects a settled Twenty20 team by 2012The two year period between 2012-2014 to be used as final preparation towards winning the 2014 ICC World Twenty20 Championship“We fully expect the Selection Committee to follow these goals whilst management will do what is necessary to provide the resources to the HPC and Team Management to achieve the outlined goals,” Hunte concluded.Source: Caribbean News Now Share Sharing is caring! Share Tweetcenter_img 59 Views   no discussions Share NewsSports WICB directors take critical decisions to advance West Indies cricket development by: – March 28, 2011last_img read more

NEW GOVERNMENT: President names business executive for position of Prime Minister

first_img Tweet NewsRegional NEW GOVERNMENT: President names business executive for position of Prime Minister by: – May 21, 2011 Sharing is caring! PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, CMC – Newly sworn in President, Michel Martlly, geared up for his first major political battle with the opposition dominated Parliament by naming a business executive as his choice for prime minister.Martelly formally nominated Daniel-Gerard Rouzier on Friday to replace Jean-Max Bellerive, who came to the post in November 2009 under former president Rene Preval and had expressed a desire to continue in office.The two chambers of parliament are dominated by the Inite party, who backed Mr Martelly’s rival for the presidency and as the second highest political figure in the French-speaking Caribbean Community (CARICOM) country, Rouzier, if appointed, will play a key role in efforts to get moving with stalled reconstruction after the devastating damage of after last year’s devastating arthquake.The United States educated Rouzier is president of a private power company and owns a car dealership. He also has served on the board of a religious charity based in Coconut Creek, Florida.A member of Martelly’s cabinet said that the president had chosen Rouzier after lengthy discussions with the presidents of both chambers to ensure his candidate would receive their backing.President Martelly, a popular singer has never before held public office and has been criticised by his rivals for his lack of political experience.In his inaugural address he promised to change the country that is recovering from the earthquake on January 12 last year that killed an estimated 300,000 people and left more than a million others homeless.In addition, the new government will have to deal with an outbreak of cholera that has so far killed more than 4,000 people. Sharecenter_img Share 26 Views   one comment Sharelast_img read more

Death toll rises from floods in Haiti

first_img Share Share NewsRegional Death toll rises from floods in Haiti by: – June 13, 2011 Sharing is caring! Tweetcenter_img Share 16 Views   no discussions Haitian nationals escaping flooding. Photo credit: AU PRINCE, Haiti — Floods caused by heavy rainfall and mudslides in Haiti claimed the lives of 23 people and damaged 470 homes last week, the United Nations humanitarian office reported, citing information provided by the country’s authorities.Eight people were injured and six others remain missing after the Artibonite River broke its banks, flooding the Grande Saline commune in Artibonite Department of north-western Haiti, according to an update issued by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).Tents, tarpaulins, and non-food items have been distributed in community shelters housing those displaced by the floods. Drainage in camps for internally displaced persons (IDPs) needs to be improved and there is also a scarcity of for water treatment tablets in those settlements.This year’s humanitarian appeal for Haiti that seeks $915 million is currently 24 percent funded, with $223 million having been received, according to OCHA.Meanwhile, the UN Stabilization Mission for in Haiti (MINUSTAH) said it is examining an incident that allegedly took place last Sunday at the Toussaint Louverture Airport in Port-au-Prince between a Haitian customs official and the mission’s military personnel over baggage inspection.MINUSTAH is probing the exact circumstances of the incident and has informed the Haitian authorities of its investigation, the mission said in a press release.The mission said that it takes the allegations very seriously and stressed that under the agreement between the United Nations and the Haitian Government, MINUSTAH and its staff must “comply with all laws and regulations of the country.”According to media reports a group of armed MINUSTAH soldiers forced their way into the airport and prevented customs officers from inspecting the luggage of their colleagues. Once outside the airport, the soldiers are alleged to have fired shots into the air.Caribbean News Nowlast_img read more