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Gluten-free diet not healthy for you (unless you have celiac disease)

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Article source: https://www.cnn.com/2018/12/13/health/gluten-free-good-food-drayer/index.html

Your Good Health: Aneurysm requires close monitoring

Dear Dr. Roach: I am a 68-year-old male in good health with a 3.3-centimetre aneurysm in my internal iliac artery. I have no symptoms. It was 1.9 cm eight years ago. My physician says that an aneurysm measuring over three cm requires surgical intervention. I have looked at recent studies that say an aneurysm measuring less than four cm can be safely observed because a rupture under this size is extremely rare. I welcome your opinion on this matter.

T.R.

The internal iliac artery is one of the main blood vessels in the hip. The aorta branches into two common iliac arteries, left and right, which in turn branch into the internal and external iliac arteries. An aneurism is a dilation of the artery, and the big concern is a rupture, which is immediately life-threatening (about 15 per cent of people will die in the first 30 days). Thus, repair is recommended before there is a significant risk of rupture.

The current standard of practice is to repair any aneurism that is over three cm, symptomatic or rapidly expanding. Although yours has expanded slowly over the past eight years and you have no symptoms, the aneurism is still over three cm.

A study presented in Finland in 2015 has challenged the current standard of practice. The author of the study said that elective treatment of an internal iliac aneurism could “quite safely be increased to 4 cm.” The average person in the study was 77 years old.

Based on this study, it appears you could hold off on surgery, for now. However, it is likely that the vessel will keep expanding and you eventually will need repair. Most importantly, the one whose opinion matters most, next to your own, is the surgeon who would be operating on you. I would recommend discussing with your vascular surgeon the advisability of waiting. I should mention that many times, these procedures are now done endovascularly, which means no open surgery.

Dear Dr. Roach: My daughter was only a year old when she was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease — a non-life-threatening disorder that would mean she spent a considerable amount of time in and out of hospitals.

Due to this diagnosis, she was unable to get the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine. She contracted measles in the hospital and, despite the best care available, died three months later. I am writing to educate parents on the benefits of vaccination, as every child deserves to be protected from infectious diseases.

D.M.P.

I admire your trying to make something positive out of the worst tragedy a parent can face.

Measles is an exceptionally infectious disease. Ninety percent of people exposed will contract the disease unless they have immunity from a previous infection or vaccination. People with some immune system diseases and those who have had chemotherapy might be unable to take the vaccine. The best hope for people who cannot get the vaccine is that enough people around them are vaccinated so that the disease cannot spread. In several countries in Europe, the level of vaccination has dropped below the critical level, with a result of over 9,000 cases in the previous 12 months, as of the most recent report. About one person per 1,000 with measles will die and another 1-2 per 1,000 will get a serious complication.

Vaccinating yourself and children protects them and others.

Dr. Roach regrets that he is unable to answer individual letters, but will incorporate them in the column whenever possible. Readers can email questions to ToYourGoodHealth@med.cornell.edu

Article source: https://www.timescolonist.com/life/health/your-good-health-aneurysm-requires-close-monitoring-1.23533584

Your Good Health: Radiation therapy raises fear of side-effects

Dear Dr. Roach: I recently have been diagnosed with early prostate cancer. My Gleason score is 7. My urologist has informed me that he doesn’t think I am a good candidate for surgery, due to having atrial fibrillation. My radiation oncologist has recommended traditional radiation therapy. However, I am worried about the possible side- effects. I am 72 and in otherwise good health.

I am considering proton therapy and wonder if you have any thoughts. My research indicates that this has far lower risk of incontinence andimpotence.

R.O.B.

Prostate cancer can be a challenging diagnosis, and I hope I can help clarify things a bit.

You have what would be termed intermediate-risk prostate cancer, based on your Gleason score, a measure of how aggressive the cancer appears on pathological slides. Most experts would recommend radiation or surgery. Atrial fibrillation itself is not necessarily a reason NOT to get surgery; however, the side effects probably are less with radiation compared with surgery. Depending on the exact findings of your cancer, experts would recommend radiation in addition to surgery in some cases similar to yours. The radiation is combined with hormone treatment in some people.

Radiation may be delivered from the outside, either with X-rays (traditional) or protons, or from the inside via internal radiation “seeds” implanted surgically, called brachytherapy. Cancer cells are more sensitive to radiation than surrounding healthy cells, so radiation has been an effective treatment for prostate cancer for decades. Unfortunately, healthy cells of the bladder and rectum still can be affected by radiation, so side-effects of radiation include urinary complaints and rectal bleeding, pain and urgency. Sexual function also can be affected; however, modern X-ray radiation techniques (called intensity-modulated radiation therapy) are much better at avoiding the structures that can lead to these complications.

The research data has shown that there is not a survival difference comparing radiation and surgery. When comparing IMRT and proton-beam treatment, there is no convincing evidence that proton-beam therapy is more effective, but there is weak-to-moderate evidence of MORE side effects with proton beam, especially more GI symptoms (34 per cent higher in the proton beam group). A head-to-head trial would be needed for definitive data. Proton beam is much more expensive. Brachytherapy, on the other hand, seems to have similar side effects and at least as good outcomes; again, there are not head-to-head trials to confirm this. Decreased sexual function is common in all treatment modalities.

All three options (X-ray, proton beam and brachytherapy) are reasonable, have similar effectiveness and relatively low side effect rates in the bladder and bowel, and higher in sexual function. However, I don’t see a reason to prefer proton treatment at the present time over IMRT.

Dear Dr. Roach: I had a terrible reaction to a tetanus shot 30 years ago — arm swollen, fever, body aches. Now I need the Tdap vaccine to protect a future grandchild. Can I get just a pertussis vaccine?

K.M.

There is not a vaccine only for pertussis, and it’s worthwhile to get the booster for tetanus and diphtheria if you haven’t had one in 30 years.

The vaccine is different now from the one you had 30 years ago, and you are less likely to get a reaction. Some people do get a sore or swollen arm, low-grade fever and aches that generally last less than 24 hours. While I hope you don’t get a reaction, I do want to stress that it is certainly safest for your new grandchild and for yourself.

Dr. Roach regrets that he is unable to answer individual letters, but will incorporate them in the column whenever possible. Readers can email questions to ToYourGoodHealth@med.cornell.edu

Article source: https://www.timescolonist.com/life/health/your-good-health-radiation-therapy-raises-fear-of-side-effects-1.23530538

How Australians perform on a global health check

We also have the fourth-highest “perceived health status” behind Canada, New Zealand and the United States, with 85.2 per cent of the population believing they are in good or very good health.

At the other end of the scale Australians performed poorly when it came to cancer rates, alcohol consumption and weight.

According to the latest data from 2016, Australia has the second-highest rates of cancer, with 323 incidence per 100,000 people, behind Denmark at 338 incidence per 100,000. This compared with Mexico, which has the lowest rates at 131 per 100,000.

With 63.4 per cent of the population overweight or obese, we tipped the scales above the OECD average of 58 per cent, and came well behind Japan, where only 25 per cent of the population is overweight. Overall, we were the ninth-heaviest country, with Australian men the third heaviest, behind the United States and Chile.

Australians also drink more than most, consuming an average of 9.7 litres of pure alcohol per capita, which wasn’t as bad as the Lithuanians (13.2 litres per capita) but was above the average of 8.9 litres and well above countries like Turkey (1.3 litres per capita).

Article source: https://www.smh.com.au/lifestyle/health-and-wellness/how-australians-perform-on-a-global-health-check-20181211-p50lif.html

Comparing the array of treatments for prostate cancer

Radiation may be delivered from the outside, either with X-rays (traditional) or protons, or from the inside via internal radiation “seeds” implanted surgically, called brachytherapy. Cancer cells are more sensitive to radiation than surrounding healthy cells, so radiation has been an effective treatment for prostate cancer for decades. Unfortunately, healthy cells of the bladder and rectum still can be affected by radiation, so side effects of radiation include urinary complaints and rectal bleeding, pain and urgency. Sexual function also may be affected; however, modern X-ray radiation techniques (called intensity-modulated radiation therapy) are much better at avoiding the structures that can lead to these complications.

Article source: https://www.stltoday.com/lifestyles/health-med-fit/health/to-your-good-health/comparing-the-array-of-treatments-for-prostate-cancer/article_3056559b-bbb9-57da-a918-824831dd4801.html

Your Good Health: Radiation therapy raises fearof side-effects

Dear Dr. Roach: I recently have been diagnosed with early prostate cancer. My Gleason score is 7. My urologist has informed me that he doesn’t think I am a good candidate for surgery, due to having atrial fibrillation. My radiation oncologist has recommended traditional radiation therapy. However, I am worried about the possible side- effects. I am 72 and in otherwise good health.

I am considering proton therapy and wonder if you have any thoughts. My research indicates that this has far lower risk of incontinence andimpotence.

R.O.B.

Prostate cancer can be a challenging diagnosis, and I hope I can help clarify things a bit.

You have what would be termed intermediate-risk prostate cancer, based on your Gleason score, a measure of how aggressive the cancer appears on pathological slides. Most experts would recommend radiation or surgery. Atrial fibrillation itself is not necessarily a reason NOT to get surgery; however, the side effects probably are less with radiation compared with surgery. Depending on the exact findings of your cancer, experts would recommend radiation in addition to surgery in some cases similar to yours. The radiation is combined with hormone treatment in some people.

Radiation may be delivered from the outside, either with X-rays (traditional) or protons, or from the inside via internal radiation “seeds” implanted surgically, called brachytherapy. Cancer cells are more sensitive to radiation than surrounding healthy cells, so radiation has been an effective treatment for prostate cancer for decades. Unfortunately, healthy cells of the bladder and rectum still can be affected by radiation, so side-effects of radiation include urinary complaints and rectal bleeding, pain and urgency. Sexual function also can be affected; however, modern X-ray radiation techniques (called intensity-modulated radiation therapy) are much better at avoiding the structures that can lead to these complications.

The research data has shown that there is not a survival difference comparing radiation and surgery. When comparing IMRT and proton-beam treatment, there is no convincing evidence that proton-beam therapy is more effective, but there is weak-to-moderate evidence of MORE side effects with proton beam, especially more GI symptoms (34 per cent higher in the proton beam group). A head-to-head trial would be needed for definitive data. Proton beam is much more expensive. Brachytherapy, on the other hand, seems to have similar side effects and at least as good outcomes; again, there are not head-to-head trials to confirm this. Decreased sexual function is common in all treatment modalities.

All three options (X-ray, proton beam and brachytherapy) are reasonable, have similar effectiveness and relatively low side effect rates in the bladder and bowel, and higher in sexual function. However, I don’t see a reason to prefer proton treatment at the present time over IMRT.

Dear Dr. Roach: I had a terrible reaction to a tetanus shot 30 years ago — arm swollen, fever, body aches. Now I need the Tdap vaccine to protect a future grandchild. Can I get just a pertussis vaccine?

K.M.

There is not a vaccine only for pertussis, and it’s worthwhile to get the booster for tetanus and diphtheria if you haven’t had one in 30 years.

The vaccine is different now from the one you had 30 years ago, and you are less likely to get a reaction. Some people do get a sore or swollen arm, low-grade fever and aches that generally last less than 24 hours. While I hope you don’t get a reaction, I do want to stress that it is certainly safest for your new grandchild and for yourself.

Dr. Roach regrets that he is unable to answer individual letters, but will incorporate them in the column whenever possible. Readers can email questions to ToYourGoodHealth@med.cornell.edu

Article source: https://www.timescolonist.com/life/health/your-good-health-radiation-therapy-raises-fearof-side-effects-1.23530538

GCC meet calls for ensuring good health of incoming expat labour

Muscat: The 22nd Meeting of the Gulf Central Committee for the Expatriates Health Check-up Programme of the GCC Health Council commenced on Sunday at the City Seasons Hotel Muscat.

The meeting is hosted by the Sultanate, represented by the Ministry of Health (MoH) and attended by Dr. Saif Al Abri, Director General of Diseases Surveillance Control along with Dr. Harib Al Lamki, Director General of Primary Healthcare and Member of the Executive Body of the Health Council.

The two-day meeting reviews maintaining the health security of the GCC member states. A delegation from the General Secretariat participated in the meeting to address the latest developments of the programme and to provide the necessary facilities in order the GCC countries implement the decision made during the 37th GCC Supreme Council Session of the GCC leaders held in Bahrain 2016. The decision stressed that the GCC embassies, consulates and relevant authorities should ensure the health of the incoming expatriates through the e-link of the Expatriates Health Check-up Programme before issuing visas to enter the GCC countries.

The health check-up programme is one of the most important preventive programmes in the public health, as it authorises examination centres in labour-exporting countries, which in turn perform the medical check-ups scheduled in the Health Council Examination lists before issuing visas in order to limit the entry of inappropriate health cases to the GCC countries.

The results of the Programme indicate that the percentage of inappropriate cases, which entered the GCC countries before the adoption of the Programme ranged between 17% -20% and gradually decreased approximately to 0.5% after applying the electronic connectivity system.

Article source: https://timesofoman.com/article/569432

Daughter’s diabetic boyfriend must clean up his diet

Dear Dr. Roach • My daughter has been dating a man who is diabetic but is not diligent about his diet. He is outwardly in good health, in that he runs competitively and bicycles in races, but sometimes he has blood sugar readings of 300 plus. He loves a diet of meat, sauces, and rich and sugary foods, and is trying to cut back, but not very hard. He does seem to think he can change things on his own; he isn’t on insulin. I worry about her being in a long-term relationship with him. He is 47 and already has gout. What do you advise? Is he right that he can change this on his own with a small effort? — K.N.

Article source: https://www.stltoday.com/lifestyles/health-med-fit/health/to-your-good-health/daughter-s-diabetic-boyfriend-must-clean-up-his-diet/article_fd0c05ca-32a8-5776-ac66-729eff675b22.html

Is Prince Philip in Good Health?

Prince Philip Prince Philip | Alastair Grant – WPA Pool/Getty Images

Prince Philip has been married to Queen Elizabeth II for more than 70 years and is the longest-serving royal consort in history but since he is in his late 90s now there have been questions and chatter for years regarding his health. Those concerns hit a fever pitch when he retired from his royal duties in 2017 and fueled rumors that he was doing so for health-related reasons. But is that really why he decided not to carry out any more royal engagements?

Here’s more on if the Duke of Edinburgh’s retirement had anything to do with his health and why he isn’t spending as much time with the queen these days.

Prince Philip’s retirement

Prince Philip Prince Philip | Tristan Fewings/Getty Images

Since he’s been the consort of Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Philip has had 22,219 solo engagements, given 5,496 speeches, and written 14 books. He was once one of the hardest-working members of the royal family but decided to officially retire on Aug. 2, 2017.

“The Duke of Edinburgh will no longer undertake his own program of public engagements,” a statement from the palace read. “The Captain General’s Parade will bring His Royal Highness’ individual program to a conclusion, although he may choose to attend certain events, alongside The Queen, from time to time.”

His retirement didn’t have anything to do with his health but everything to do with the fact that he was 96 years old and it was time to stop after so many years of service. Even Her Majesty has scaled back on her royal affairs as well and no longer travels overseas for any engagements.

How healthy is Prince Philip?

Prince Philip Prince Philip | Yui Mok/AFP/Getty Images

Prince Philip is actually in pretty good health for his age. His only recent health-related issues came in June 2017 and April 2018.

In June of last year, he was taken from Windsor to London and admitted to a hospital after being diagnosed with an infection. Then, in April 2018, he was admitted to the King Edward VII Hospital for hip replacement surgery. He was discharged the following day and six weeks later was able to attend the wedding of his grandson, Prince Harry, to Meghan Markle.

Prior to that, The Sun noted that the duke had “a stent in his heart a few years ago, but he loves fishing and sometimes stands for hours in the River Dee. For his age he’s as fit as a fiddle.”

Where spends most of his time without his wife

Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip | ALASTAIR GRANT/AFP/Getty Images

After living so much of his life in the public eye, Prince Philip is seen much less now as he no longer stays at Buckingham Palace. The prince has retreated to Norfolk where he stays at a residence on the royal Sandringham estate called Wood Farm. Of course, Queen Elizabeth is not yet retired so she still spends the majority of her time at the London palace.

The Daily Beast reported that the prince has basically moved out of Buckingham Palace and has only spent a “handful of nights” there since officially retiring.

A source told the Express that while Philip is at Wood Farm a lot now he does still make time to see his wife.

“He very much enjoys Wood Farm, and he and the queen still see each other at some point in the week or weekends,” the source said. “They see each other depending on Her Majesty’s schedule, but she works around it to see him as much as possible.”

Read more: Is Queen Elizabeth II in Good Health?

Check out The Cheat Sheet on Facebook!

Article source: https://www.cheatsheet.com/entertainment/is-prince-philip-in-good-health.html/

Sauna bathing for good health, Lifestyle News & Top Stories

HELSINKI • Can sauna bathing give you a clean bill of health?

A study conducted by researchers from the University of Eastern Finland and the University of Jyvaskyla has shown that a higher frequency of this activity can lower the risk of death from cardiovascular disease (CVD) in middle-aged and elderly people.

The research, which has recently been published in open-access journal BMC Medicine, found that the mortality from CVD among people using sauna amenities four to seven times a week is 73 per cent lower than those who do it once a week.

The findings were based on self-reported questionnaires and documents recording deaths from cardiovascular causes.

A total of 1,688 people living in eastern Finland were involved in the research.

At the beginning of the study, the average age of the participants was 63 years old. Among them, 51.4 per cent were women and 49.5 per cent were men. Data was collected between 1998 and 2015.

The long-term study found that the number of cases of CVD mortality decreased as the length of time spent in the sauna a week increased.

For those who devoted more than 45 minutes a week, the number of cases was 5.1 per 1,000 person years.

The number was 9.6 for those who logged fewer than 15 minutes in the sauna a week.

Professor Jari Laukkanen from the University of Eastern Finland said an important finding of the research was that more regular sauna use is associated with a lower risk of death from CVD in middle-aged to elderly women as well as men, adding that previous studies focused mainly on men.

There are several possible reasons behind the association between sauna use and the lower risk of death from CVD.

The research team has shown in previous studies that high sauna use is associated with lower blood pressure.

In addition, sauna use is known to trigger an increase in the heart rate, which is seen in low-to moderate-intensity physical exercises too, added Prof Laukkanen.

However, the researchers pointed out that further research is needed to understand if the findings apply to other populations outside the region.

The sauna is an essential part of Finnish culture.

There are more than three million saunas in Finland, a country with only 5.4 million people.

It means that every household has at least one sauna on average.

For generations, Finns have believed that saunas can provide many health benefits.

XINHUA

Article source: https://www.straitstimes.com/lifestyle/sauna-bathing-for-good-health