Lose weight by eating less salt! - Go on! - Try it! - You will feel so much better!
See my website
Wilde About Steroids

Read my Mensa article on Obesity and the Salt Connection

Read my Mensa article on Cruelty, Negligence and the Abuse of Power in the NHS: Fighting the System

Read about the cruel treatment I suffered at the Sheffield Dental Hospital: Long In The Toothache

You can contact me by email from my website. The site does not sell anything and has no banners, sponsors or adverts - just helpful information about how salt can cause obesity.

This blog has been exported to a new URL so that readers can leave Comments again. If you want to leave a Comment, please visit my 'new' blog, which has Comments enabled. The 'new' blog is Wilde About Obesity.

Saturday, March 31, 2007

Government's solution to NHS dentistry crisis: a plaque!

Government's solution to NHS dentistry crisis: more plaque - Guardian

1st Extract:

"Ministers are preparing to unveil a secret weapon in their campaign to woo dentists back to work for the NHS in England. Every practice that is able to provide a quality service and show commitment to the NHS is to be given something money cannot buy. A new kind of plaque.

Department of Health officials are convinced that dentists would treasure the opportunity to brand their premises with the NHS logo - one of the most recognised symbols in the land.

Those treating a high proportion of NHS patients will be allowed to screw the NHS plaque to the front door of their surgeries and use the brand to add extra professional kudos to their letterheads. As a badge of quality, the logo may also serve as an advertisement to private patients, who pay higher fees for fillings and extractions.

Dentists, who spend their lives in a constant struggle against another sort of plaque, have spent the week berating the government for the failure of a policy that was meant to provide a better service to more patients.

2nd Extract:

"A spokeswoman denied yesterday that the new dental contract was in any way to blame for the shortage of dentists. "The NHS is continuing to expand dental services. Over the next few months, the new services due to open around the country should deliver access for a further 500,000 patients," she said."

Yeah, right! - Watch out for pigs flying past!

C diff bug linked to deaths of 17 elderly patients in four months at the James Paget University Hospital in Gorleston, Norfolk

Hospital bug linked to deaths of 17 elderly patients in four months - Independent


"Between December and March 28, 17 patients at the hospital had experienced complications from the bug which had either caused or contributed to their death, said a spokeswoman.

Five patients had undergone major bowel surgery after being struck down by the bug.

Another 11 were being treated in the hospital.

Staff said the James Padget was not the first UK hospital to have been hit by C Diff.

They said there had been outbreaks in Leicester and Buckinghamshire after the bug first surfaced in North America."

First over-the-counter weight loss pill to be UK-approved next year

First over-the-counter weight loss pill to be UK-approved next year - Independent

This is absolute lunacy!

1st Extract:

"In the US, the Food and Drug Administration gave the go-ahead to Alli last month, triggering a marketing campaign that the company hopes will reap five to six million US customers a year. Priced between $12 and $25 a week (£5-12), Alli could have annual sales of $1.5bn. "

What a disgraceful and unnecessary waste of money!

2nd Extract:

"Glaxo said yesterday that it planned to apply for a European licence by the end of the year with the launch of the drug expected to follow within 12 months. Alli is a version of Xenical, the prescription weight loss remedy launched by the Swiss pharmaceutical company, Roche, in 1999.

Two thirds of adults are overweight or obese and the numbers are continuing to rise. Experts believe diet and discipline are not alone sufficient to prevent waistlines expanding and that extra help is required. "

All that is necessary to curb the growing incidence of obesity is to tell the truth about what causes it! - Obesity is NOT caused by overeating. It is caused by fluid retention, frequently because of taking prescribed medications, especially steroids such as prednisolone, prednisone and HRT, and anti-depressants such as amitriptyline. Obesity can be easily reduced by seriously reducing your salt/sodium intake and eating plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables. - It is important not to restrict calories. - 'Slimming' is unnecessary, ineffective and often harmful.

3rd Extract:

"This unabsorbed fat has to go somewhere and dieters using it are prone to diarrhoea, its least attractive side-effect. Steve Burton, the Glaxo executive in charge of promoting Alli, has used the drug himself and described to reporters the embarrassment it caused when he ate a fish and chip meal - the result was a dash home for a change of clothes. Still, Mr Burton, 48, is a walking advertisement for Alli. Over three years his weight fell from 275lb to 210lb. "

Appalling! - And Mr Burton could have lost the same amount or more of weight in a far shorter time, simply by reducing, and then eliminating, all avoidable salt/sodium from what he eats, and making sure this included plenty of fresh vegetables and fruit. - This would have been completely safe, and cost-free, and would have involved no hunger, no fat restriction, no adverse side-effects at all. - Indeed there would have been a host of additional health benefits from the salt restriction.

Addendum (added 18 October 2008)
FAT RETENTION for further information and advice. - It is a webpage I had not written at the time I posted this news item originally.

Lose weight by eating less salt! Go on! - Try it! - You will feel so much better!
See my website www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk
(The site does not sell anything and has no banners or sponsors or adverts - just helpful information.)

Read my Mensa article on Obesity and the Salt Connection

See Sodium in foods and

Associated health conditions

British doctors favour ending fertility treatment funded by the NHS.

End fertility treatment on the NHS, say doctors - Telegraph


"Three quarters of British doctors say they do not believe that couples should be able to get free fertility treatment on the NHS, according to research published today.

A survey of more than 1,000 GPs and hospital doctors showed that 70 per cent said that the NHS should not pay for every type of operation but there was no consensus on what the NHS should fund. "

I believe that most members of the public are also of the opinion that the NHS should not be paying for fertility treatments. They would rather NHS money be spent on treating people who are ill, not people who are infertile, even if some doctors try to re-define infertility as an illness, which, patently, it is not.

Most women can improve their fertility by reducing their salt intake. - This is because reducing salt intake reduces any fluid retention, which is the cause of obesity, and there is a positive correlation between obesity and infertility.

Lose weight by eating less salt! Go on! - Try it! - You will feel so much better!
See my website www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk
(The site does not sell anything and has no banners or sponsors or adverts - just helpful information.)
See also http://www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk/conditions.html

Friday, March 30, 2007

Cancer specialist, Karol Sikora, wants NHS patients to be allowed to pay towards their NHS care.

Cancer specialist: 'Let NHS patients pay for their treatment' - Independent


"A leading cancer specialist has warned that NHS patients risk losing out on an imminent revolution in cancer treatment unless they are allowed to pay towards the cost of their care.

Professor Karol Sikora, an expert in the management of cancer at Imperial College London, said at least six powerful cancer drugs would become available over the next year, costing at least £60,000 a year per patient. The "designer" cancer drugs, similar to Herceptin, are among the first to offer targeted therapy for cancers of the breast, lung, kidney and bowel."

"NHS patients are officially forbidden from buying their drugs privately as this would mix NHS and private care. The Department of Health says patients must choose whether to be treated on the NHS, and accept what the NHS offers, or to go private in which case all of their care, not just the drugs, must be paid for. A Department of Health spokesman said: "You cannot be both a NHS patient and a private patient at the same time. Co-payments would risk creating a two- tier health service and be in direct contravention with the principles and values of the NHS.""

"A survey by the charity Cancerbackup showed two-thirds of respondents intended to vote in the next general election on the basis of health policy and for 76 per cent cancer was the most important health issue."

If, as Cancerbackup's survey indicates, cancer is the most important health issue for most people, then it is a great pity that people are not told that lowering salt/sodium intake lowers the risk of almost all cancers - as well as hypertension, diabetes, obesity, osteoporosis/osteopenia, heart disease, heart attack, stroke, and a host of other chronic illnesses... - See http://www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk/conditions.html

Lose weight by eating less salt! Go on! - Try it! - You will feel so much better!
See my website www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk
(The site does not sell anything and has no banners or sponsors or adverts - just helpful information.)

Article in the British Medical Journal expresses concern about institutionalised racism in hospitals caring for the mentally ill.

Delivering mental health services for a diverse society - BMJ article


"The most consistent findings are that African-Caribbeans with mental health problems are disproportionately found in forensic, psychiatric, and prison populations and among compulsorily detained patients. They are more likely to receive antipsychotic medication and less likely to be offered psychotherapy."

I received an email today from someone who wrote to tell me she has lost 7 pounds in 11 days by following the salt reduction advice on my website.

I received an email today from someone who wrote to tell me she has lost 7 pounds in 11 days by following the advice on my website - i.e. to cut down on salt/sodium and eat plenty of fruit and fresh vegetables. - She was so excited!

She wrote to ask me how long the weight loss would go on and how much would she lose but I couldn't tell her that; it's very individual and depends on lots of factors. But it's very important to give up dieting/slimming and to avoid all the dieting junk food and to eat plenty of good, healthy real food.

This is part of what I wrote back:

"You must make sure always to eat plenty of food and never count calories or diet again, so that you keep the veins as strong as possible. And avoid diet cokes and that sort of junk. Your body needs food; it doesn't need non-food stuff and artificial sweeteners and a load of strange chemicals. Dieting is very harmful - and as you know, it doesn't work and it isn't necessary.

I saw some respectable scientific research recently that indicates that extra calcium in your food intake can assist with healthy weight reduction. The researchers recommended eating some low fat yoghurt each day as a healthy way to get this extra calcium. (Not that VERY low fat yoghurt with all the added chemical junk and sweeteners - just the ordinary low fat yoghurt.)"

Lose weight by eating less salt! Go on! - Try it! - You will feel so much better!
See my website www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk
(The site does not sell anything and has no banners or sponsors or adverts - just helpful information.)

Hospital fined £80,000 over Daryl Eyles' death from legionella

Hospital fined £80,000 over legionella death - Guardian


"A hospital has been fined £80,000 after a man who had recovered from leukemia died after contracting legionnaires' disease just days before he was due to be discharged.

After months of chemotherapy, Daryl Eyles had been told he was in remission and could plan to leave hospital when he contracted legionnaires' disease from a hospital shower head and died.

Yesterday Bath's Royal United hospital, which later admitted liability for Mr Eyles' death after an investigation found that basic maintenance of its water system had not been carried out, was fined £80,000 for ignoring safety guidelines. Judge Richard Bromilow said at Bristol crown court that the trust had been guilty of failing to comply with a series of safety guidelines when Mr Eyles died in 2004. He described the penalty as an "awful irony" because it would have an impact on health services provided by the hospital.

Mr Eyles, 37, a security guard at Bath University, was diagnosed with leukaemia after developing an abscess in August 2003. Shortly after his final chemotherapy session in January 2004, he took a shower at the William Budd oncology unit, became ill with a fever, and died a week later. A postmortem revealed he had the legionella bug in his system."

Alzheimer's sufferers dying in sedative drug 'scandal'

Alzheimer's sufferers dying in drug 'scandal' - Guardian


"A class of drugs widely prescribed for people suffering from dementia is leading to the premature deaths of thousands of patients every year, according to research published today. Campaigners branded the continued use of the sedatives, called neuroleptics, a national scandal after a five-year study revealed that people with Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia are twice as likely to die if they are prescribed them.

Neuroleptics are widely prescribed to help control symptoms of Alzheimer's and dementia including agitation, hallucinations and erratic behaviour, despite only being licensed for use in people suffering from schizophrenia. The research suggests they are of little benefit to patients with milder symptoms, greatly increase their risk of dying prematurely, and that 45% of Alzheimer's patients in care homes are prescribed a neuroleptic drug."

Prescribed medications are often harmful and often inappropriately prescribed (as in these cases) and very poorly monitored. I doubt that the negligent prescribing will be punished at all...

Fewer than half of NHS staff would be happy to be a patient in their own hospital. - A pretty damning indictment...

Staff wouldn't be treated at their own hospital - Telegraph


"Fewer than half of NHS staff members would be happy to be a patient at their own hospital, according to an official survey by the health service regulator.

More than a quarter, 27 per cent, said they disagreed or strongly disagreed with the statement: "I would be happy with the standards of care provided if I was a patient in my trust".

Only 34 per cent said they would be happy to be treated, five per cent would be "very" happy with the prospect and 33 per cent could not decide.

The survey of 128,000 NHS staff in 326 trusts in England responded to the questionnaire from the Healthcare Commission, seeking information on how working conditions and the NHS could be improved.

Asked if their trusts put patients as the "top priority", fewer than half agreed and more than a quarter (26 per cent) said patients were not the top priority."

I have pointed out previously in this blog that patients are not a priority in the NHS, but for the staff actually to agree with me on this is surely a damning indictment...)o:

Further extract:

"In the fight against hospital super bugs little changed over a year. Nearly a third, 31 per cent, said hot water, soap, hand towels or alcohol rub were not always available, compared with 32 per cent a year before."

Not much progress there then...)o:

Further extract:

"The organisation NHS Employers said staff had a "positive" view of working in the NHS but there were improvements to be made.

"In comparison with many organisations, satisfaction with the NHS as an employer is still good, but we need to work hard locally and nationally to make sure the NHS remains a place people want to work," said Alastair Henderson, the deputy director."

The main aim should be satisfaction with the NHS by the PATIENTS! - But they are increasingly fearful of going into hospital because of poor hygiene and inadequate cleaning, apart from the many other deficiencies in the service.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

UN calls for mass circumcision of men to tackle Aids epidemics

UN calls for mass circumcision of men to tackle Aids epidemics - Guardian


"The United Nations yesterday urged all countries with devastating Aids epidemics to launch mass male circumcision programmes following evidence that the surgical procedure can protect against HIV infection.

The World Health Organisation and UNAids, the joint UN programme on HIV/Aids, made the official recommendations after a meeting of experts in Montreux, Switzerland, to consider the evidence from three trials in Africa, which were stopped early when it became clear that men who had been circumcised were up to 60% less likely to get HIV than those who had not.

Experts accept circumcision is a sensitive issue, tied in to social and religious traditions. During sectarian fighting in India, Muslims and Hindus at one time would tell friend from foe by pulling down their trousers - all Muslims were circumcised.

But research suggests men and women in Africa would accept male circumcision if it lowered the risk of Aids, and WHO experts yesterday held out the prospect of cultural change over a decade or more. Catherine Hankins, associate director of the WHO, said that within about a decade in the 1980s and 1990s, South Korea went from no circumcision of boys to circumcising 90%, influenced by the example of the US."

Too few NHS dentists.

The Big Question: Why are there so few NHS dentists, and is the service getting worse? - Independent

Bronchial thermoplasty could help with asthma.

Asthma breakthrough is a breath of hot air - Telegraph


"The first new treatment for asthma that removes the need to take drugs was revealed yesterday by scientists from Britain and Canada and hailed as a breakthrough for millions of sufferers.

Patients in the trial had fewer attacks, symptoms were reduced and they needed to take their asthma drugs less in the year after receiving the treatment.

About 5.2 million people in Britain suffer from asthma and 2.6 million have severe symptoms.

Of these about 500,000 have asthma that is so severe it cannot be effectively controlled by drugs.

Every year in Britain about 1,400 people die from an asthma attack.

The treatment is called bronchial thermoplasty. The procedure reduces smooth muscle in small and medium-sized airways using radio waves to produce heat.

During an asthma attack, the airway muscles contract. Because bronchial thermoplasty thins the muscle walls, they cannot narrow as much when irritants trigger asthma attacks. This reduces asthma symptoms."

Another article about it is here: 'Lung-burning' gives hope for asthma patients - Independent

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Independent inquiry into the deaths of nearly 2,000 haemophilia patients after exposure to contaminated blood and blood products

Inquiry opens into blood contamination deaths - Guardian


"An independent inquiry began today into the deaths of nearly 2,000 haemophilia patients exposed to HIV and/or hepatitis C through contaminated blood and blood products, described as the worst treatment catastrophe in NHS history."

"The campaign on the patients' behalf has been led by Labour peer Lord Alf Morris, who was Britain's first minister for disabled people and is the president of the all-party parliamentary group on haemophilia.

He said that, of the 4,670 haemophiliac patients exposed to hepatitis C, 1,243 were also exposed to HIV and despite improvements in treatment for both viruses, only 2,552 patients with hepatitis C and just 361 with HIV are still alive."

Squabbling consultant surgeons have been compromising cardiac care at the Oxford Radcliffe NHS Trust hospital.

Surgery unit hobbled by rows between consultants - Independent


"A heart surgery unit with the highest death rate in the country failed to examine why patients were dying, did not tailor systems to cater for high-risk patients and was hobbled by disputes among consultant surgeons, an investigation has found.

In a scathing report with echoes of the Bristol children's heart surgery disaster of the 1990s, the Healthcare Commission, the NHS inspectorate, criticises the Oxford Radcliffe NHS Trust for failing to review the performance of its cardiac care unit and ensure it provided safe and effective care to heart patients over a period of almost a decade.

The investigation is the latest into the unit which was once one of the premier centres in Britain, which pioneered the use of motorised hearts under the leadership of the surgeon Stephen Westaby.

Mr Westaby clashed with another of the surgeons, Ravi Pillai, plunging the unit into disarray. The number of heart operations fell by a third and an inquiry by the NHS South East Regional Office, published in 2000, concluded that the unit was "on its knees" and "riven by internal conflict"."

"Nigel Ellis, the head of investigations at the Healthcare Commission, said: " We are critical of the trust for failing to respond to the previous reports. They have looked at the criticisms and, rather than reflect on their clinical practice, they have complained the data is inaccurate."

Mr Ellis said the findings echoed the Bristol children's heart surgery disaster in the 1990s, which revolutionised the regulation of the medical profession and led to the creation of the Healthcare Commission.

He said: "The whole point of collecting data is to use it to understand what happened ­ which [the Oxford Radcliffe Trust] failed to do. In that respect alone, their failure to reflect on their practice is similar to what happened in Bristol. The surgeons are not working together as a team ­ they need to agree a common way forward and they need to be led by the management of the trust." "

Consumption of residues of steroids in meat/beef by pregnant women may be lowering fertility in their sons. - Study published in the journal Human Rep

Eating beef could threaten sons' fertility - Telegraph


"Prof Shanna Swan, lead author of the study published in the journal Human Reproduction, said: “These findings suggest that maternal beef consumption is associated with lower sperm concentration and possible sub-fertility, associations that may be related to the presence of anabolic steroids and other xenobiotics (foreign chemicals) in beef.

“Theoretically, the foetus and young children are particularly sensitive to exposure to sex steroids. Therefore, the consumption of residues of steroids in meat by pregnant women and young children is of particular concern.”

But while the study results revealed a significant link between the lowest sperm counts and mothers who were the highest beef consumers, researchers could not pinpoint hormones, pesticides or other environmental chemicals as a direct cause.

“What we’re really doing here is raising an issue,” said Prof Swan, who is director of the Centre for Reproductive Epidemiology at the University of Rochester, New York.

“The average sperm concentration of the men in our study went down as their mothers’ beef intake went up.” "

"Dr Allan Pacey at The University of Sheffield, said: “That hormones given to cattle might have lowered the sperm counts of adult men because their mothers ate a lot of beef when they were pregnant with them, is alarming to say the least. This clearly needs to be investigated further.” "

You really do need to read the whole article because there are conflicting views.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

I watched the ITV programme "Half Ton Hospital: Tonight Special" this evening. It featured the New York obesity clinic, Brookhaven Hospital.

In this documentary we saw a few of the patients/residents in this clinic, one of whom, a young woman, sadly died during the time period covered. - Many obese people suffer from sleep apnoea; they have particular difficulty in managing to keep breathing while they are in bed asleep, so they wear oxygen masks to help with this. This young woman had forgotten to put on her oxygen mask one night and that was why she had died.

Most of the morbidly obese residents were trying to lose weight by adopting the measure advised by the director of the clinic, namely to eat only 1500 calories a day and to take more exercise. Many of them, understandably, could not keep to this regime and there was a lot of what was called 'cheating' - i.e. sending out for food to be brought in - food that was then eaten 'in secret'. - But the CCTV cameras showed this happening.

The director seemed a nice fellow, and was very concerned about the harm that obesity surgery (bariatric surgery) can do and the deaths that often result from it. He wanted to protect one of the residents from this. But the young woman was determined to have it done and by the end of the programme she had had gastric surgery. We were told that this meant that she would then have to eat and drink very little in order not to strain/burst the small stomach that she now has.

But the director was quite right, this young woman could not keep to the regime. She had already started to eat extra food and presumably will damage her stomach.

I can't cover all the programme with what I write here, obviously, but I feel I should commend the kindness that was evident. Those fat patients were not insulted (except when they were in public, away from the clinic) and were treated with respect as fellow human beings.

The sadness is that nobody realised that all they needed to do was eat less salt/sodium... - There is no need to restrict calories and there is no need to increase exercise. Because obesity is not caused by overeating or by insufficient exercise; it is caused by fluid retention, usually in people who are sensitive to salt. Exercise is awkward and often hazardous for obese people. And obese people need a lot of calories/food because carrying all the extra water/weight about uses up a great deal of energy.

One young woman managed to lose 3 stone in weight in a month, keeping to the 1500 calories a day and doing more exercise. - I firmly believe that the reason she lost weight was actually because she must have been eating a lot less salt. - I feel sure that she could have eaten twice as many calories and still lost a lot of weight fast provided that she avoided all salt and also ate plenty of fruit and fresh vegetables.

I invite you to read my Mensa article Obesity and the Salt Connection

You don't have to believe me, of course. - But the thing about what I say is that I'm not selling anything, and you can easily put my advice to the test. You also have the reassurance that cutting down on the amount of salt you eat is completely safe and will benefit your health in many ways.

Lose weight by eating less salt! Go on! - Try it! - You will feel so much better!
See my website
(The site does not sell anything and has no banners or sponsors or adverts - just helpful information.)

The smoking ban in Scotland is hailed as successful.

Scottish smoking ban hailed as a tremendous success - Guardian


"Only one smoker and one business have been taken to court for flouting Scotland's strict anti-smoking laws in the year since they were introduced, it emerged yesterday.

Critics of the ban predicted open disobedience by smokers, but Scottish ministers claimed yesterday it had been a "tremendous" success after learning that only 175 people were fined for breaching the law."

Some people gain weight after giving up smoking. - You can lose weight by eating less salt! - Go on! - Try it! - You will feel so much better!
See my website www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk
(The site does not sell anything and has no banners or sponsors or adverts - just helpful information.)

Increase in child poverty in Britain.

Child poverty increases - Guardian


"Campaigners warned today that the government's key social justice target was in "serious jeopardy" after new figures showed the first rise in the number of children living in relative poverty in nearly 10 years.

Despite New Labour's key promise to halve the problem by 2010, today statistics revealed a 100,000 jump in the number of children living in relative poverty last year.

Official figures showed that 2.8 million children were living below the relative poverty line in 2005/06, with the figure rising to 3.8 million after housing costs were factored in. This represents an increase from 2.7 million and 3.6 million respectively on the previous year."

Should nurses carry out abortions?

Let nurses carry out abortions, say experts - Telegraph


"Backers of the change argue that early abortion is not surgery, does not need to be carried out by a doctor and that specialist nurses already undertake comparable procedures.

Vincent Argent, a consultant obstetrician at Addenbrooke's Cambridge University Teaching Hospital and Lin Pavey, of the Royal College of Nursing termination of pregnancy group, say specially-trained nurses could perform such procedures, without a doctor present. They also argue that the law which prevents nurses from carrying our surgical abortions has been misinterpreted.

But the pro-life charity Life said yesterday that such a change would trivialise abortion and make it easier to obtain."

Fabian Society reports Britain's "shocking" record of babies being born underweight.

UK's 'shocking' record on low birthweights - Telegraph


"Britain's mothers should be encouraged not to have their children too late in life because of the "shocking" record of babies being born underweight, says a report today.

The UK has the worst rate of any country in western Europe, except Greece, with 40,000 babies born every year at less than 5lb 8oz.

The report, commissioned by the Fabian Society, a Left-leaning think-tank, says working women should be encouraged by their bosses to have babies in their 20s and early 30s to avoid the health risks associated with having an underweight child. It says Britain's record on underweight babies is worse now than in 1989, and is a "scar on the national conscience"."

"Babies with a low birth-weight suffer many health problems and it is estimated that 24,000 children would have the chance of a better life if Britain's record improved. Low weight is caused by a factors such as a mother's poor diet, her smoking, drinking habits and her age."

"In 2004, two thirds of all stillbirths and 70 per cent of deaths within a week of birth were among babies with a birth-weight of less than 5lb 8oz. In 1989, 67 of every 1,000 babies fell into that category but the proportion rose to 76 by 1999 and 78 by 2006.

Underweight babies who survive are more likely to have disabilities or suffer brain damage or have a low IQ. In later life there is an increased risk of health problems.

The rise in underweight babies is blamed on some social trends such as teenage pregnancy, multiple births as a result of IVF and the rise in women having babies late. In England alone, the number of women over 35 having babies has risen from 63,000 in 1993 to 103,000 in 2003."

I strongly suspect that 'slimming' and 'dieting' are among the main reasons for a mother's "poor diet". - If only people were to be told the truth about the causes of obesity and overweight! - Obesity is caused by fluid retention, not by overeating. - All that is normally necessary to lose excess weight is to eat less salt, i.e. to reduce one's sodium intake, and to eat plenty of fruit and fresh vegetables. See http://www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk/pregnant_mothers.html

Lose weight by eating less salt! Go on! - Try it! - You will feel so much better!
See my website www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk
(The site does not sell anything and has no banners or sponsors or adverts - just helpful information.)

Stem cell treatment has helped liver cancer patients in Germany.

Stem cell treatment saves liver cancer patients - Telegraph


"Patients treated for advanced liver cancer have grown new liver cells after being injected with stem cells taken from their hips.

Six out of eight patients are still alive two years later with fully functioning livers. The treatment, given in Germany, brings hope for liver patients.

Surgeons at the University of Dusseldorf took bone marrow stem cells from the hips of patients with advanced liver cancer and injected then into the healthy parts of the liver. "

Monday, March 26, 2007

Food scientists have done tests and say they have evidence that organic produce is better for us than non-organic.

Organic IS healthier, say food scientists


"As the debate rages on about whether organically grown food is better for us than the "conventional" produce we have become used to, a new study sides firmly with organic.
Scientists found that some organic food is more healthy after tests on kiwi fruit grown by both methods.

The American researchers discovered that organically grown kiwis had significantly higher levels of vitamin C and polyphenols - compounds associated with health benefits including reducing cholesterol, improving circulation and preventing cancer."

"The researchers compared organic and non-organic kiwis grown next to each other on a farm in Marysville, California, at the same time. They found levels of sugars and acids were almost identical, so the flavour would be similar.

The organic fruit was darker and had thicker skin - likely to have developed as part of its defence against pests in the absence of pesticides.

It had 17 per cent more polyphenols - antioxidants that reduce the production in the body of harmful chemicals called free radicals. The organic produce was also found to have 14 per cent more vitamin C and greater concentrations of several important minerals such as potassium and calcium."

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Is feminism bad for your health?

Warning: feminism is bad for your health


"Since before Germaine Greer published The Female Eunuch in 1970, and even before Mary Wollstonecraft wrote A Vindication of the Rights of Woman in 1792, campaigners have fought for sexual equality, convinced it is the key to a better society. Now researchers have discovered that gender equality may make people unwell.

Researchers in Sweden, arguably one of the most egalitarian countries in the world, have found that equality could be associated with poorer health for both men and women.

In the study, published in Social Science and Medicine, the researchers compared data from all of Sweden's 290 municipalities. They used nine indicators of equality in both the private and public sectors, ranging from the proportion of men and women in management jobs to average income. These were related to local life expectancy, disability and absence from work through illness.

The results showed a strong link between gender equality and levels of sickness and disability for both men and women. One of the findings was that equal financial resources between the sexes was associated with higher levels of sickness and disability."

In my opinion, the greatest avoidable risk to women's health is the widespread sexist attitude of health professionals, mainly doctors. Far too many doctors - the majority, I believe - tend to stereotype women patients as people who exaggerate their pain, and when a woman presents with physical symptoms, these doctors tend to look for a psychogenic explanation rather than rigorously examining for the physical cause of the symptoms. - There is an excellent article about this (Lennane and Lennane, "Alleged Psychogenic Disorders in Women") which, although written in 1973, is still largely true today. - The article is included in various books, including "The Changing Experience of Women", Open University Press.

More about the bad effects of taking cholesterol-lowering statins.

Second opinion: These extraordinary drugs have the power to make a happy man very old


""Since my husband, a previously alert and healthy man, started taking Atorvastatin, our lives have changed horrendously for the worse," writes a lady from Middlesex, echoed by others troubled variously by loss of memory, irritability, lethargy, personality change, melancholy, insomnia, excruciating muscle pains, numbness and burning of the hands and feet, bowel disturbances and much more.

There is no doubt that statins are to blame, as the improvement in in those who have "given them a rest" verges on the miraculous.

"I felt like an old man of 90 and had to use a walking stick," writes a formerly very fit ex-Marine from Dorset, who has since returned to his thrice-weekly workout in the gym.

If you are concerned about statins, see the website of Florida physician (and former Nasa astronaut) Duane Gravelin, www.spacedoc.net,) where he has posted the experience of several hundred statin victims."

If you are concerned about the health of your heart, it would be wise to cut down on the amount of salt that you eat. - See http://www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk/conditions.html

Lose weight by eating less salt! Go on! - Try it! - You will feel so much better!
See my website www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk
(The site does not sell anything and has no banners or sponsors or adverts - just helpful information.)

Mussels, apparently, are very good for you...

Mussels boom after rethink on health


"Mussels are becoming a new "wonder food", as sales surged by almost 30 per cent last year after Government scientists changed their previous view that the shellfish was unhealthy.

Analysts believe the rise follows the endorsement by celebrity chefs such as Rick Stein and Gordon Ramsay, mounting concerns over the sustainability of other seafood stocks and a decision by the Department of Health to reverse advice that mussels are bad for the heart.

According to TNS, the independent retail analyst, sales of mussels in Britain rose from 2,390 tons in 2005, to 3,000 tons last year, a total of £15 million."

"For two decades, mussels have been blamed for causing high cholesterol levels, which contribute to heart disease.

But studies by scientists in the US shattered the theory and, in December, the NHS Direct website removed mussels from a list of items associated with high cholesterol."

Another case of a mother whose baby son was taken away after she was wrongly accused of harming him. The medical evidence was "fundamentally flawed".

Child abuse case drove mother to abortion


"Last week, a High Court judge said that the parents had experienced a "nightmare" after a "false finding by a court".

The family, from Oldham, cannot be identified for legal reasons. In court, the child was referred to only as K.

In his judgment, Mr Justice Ryder said: "The parents bore an almost intolerable burden of being unjustly accused of inflicting serious injury on their infant son. They lived for 12 months with the opprobrium and suspicion of friends and neighbours."

"The judge pointed out how a senior neuroradiologist, Dr Wellesley St Clair Forbes, had used language which was "too absolute" in relation to the possible cause of the baby's alleged injuries.
The case emerged as victims of miscarriages of justice prepared to unveil a campaign aimed at changing the way medical evidence is considered in court.

Among those at the launch at Westminster this week will be Angela Cannings, who spent 18 months in prison after being wrongly convicted of killing two of her children, both victims of cot deaths; and Ian and Angela Gay, cleared in a retrial this month of poisoning their adopted son with salt and shaking him. The couple served 15 months in jail after being convicted of manslaughter in 2005.

The event will begin with a minute's silence for Sally Clark, the solicitor who died two weeks ago. She served three years in prison for murdering her two babies before her conviction was quashed and she was freed in 2003."

"A circuit judge, Judge Newton, repeatedly refused the parents' requests for a second expert opinion from a doctor.

When the opinion was -finally obtained from Dr Neil Stoodley, a consultant -paediatric neuroradiologist, in July 2005, he called Dr Forbes's findings "fundamentally flawed" and "incapable of withstanding logical analysis". "

Many women experience poor support after giving birth. Patricia Hewitt, the Health Secretary, is expected to unveil new maternity strategy next month.

'No one cared about me and my baby' - Sunday Telegraph


"The hours and days after childbirth are among the most difficult in a woman's life, so why is the NHS so bad at providing support? David Harrison uncovers a tale of over-stretched staff and bureaucratic arrogance

Karen Linnett was "exhausted and anxious" after giving birth to Billy, two years ago. "He was my first child. I was in pain, hormonal and nervous that I couldn't cope," she says. Six days later, when she left hospital to take Billy home to Hampstead, north London, she was soothed by an assurance that a community midwife would visit her next morning.

But the midwife didn't turn up. Ms Linnett, a photographer, became worried. Concerned that Billy was not feeding properly, she rang to ask what was happening. There was no answer. She left messages. Hours later she was told no one would come for four days. "I lost it," she says. "I was shouting at them hysterically because I was scared."

A midwife was found and she finally arrived at 7pm. "When she weighed Billy, the scales showed he had lost weight," says Ms Linnett, 43. "But she told me not to worry because the scales were inaccurate.""

"The Government admits that the situation is unacceptable. Next month Patricia Hewitt, the Health Secretary, is expected to unveil a new maternity strategy that will guarantee every woman a named midwife to care for her throughout her pregnancy and during labour, helped by a maternity support worker."

During pregnancy it is a good idea for women to minimise their salt intake. This will limit any excess weight gain and will lower the risk of high blood pressure and other health problems. - See http://www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk/pregnant_mothers.html

Proposed reforms of A and E could put lives at risk.

A & E reform could put lives at greater risk - Sunday Telegraph


"Patients' lives will be put at risk by a major shake-up of accident and emergency departments, a secret report by senior doctors has warned.

The professional bodies representing A & E doctors say the new system - which could see casualty departments operating without back-up services such as intensive care, paediatrics and surgery - is too dangerous.

Desperately sick children taken to casualty by anxious parents could fall victim to the system's reliance on a "drive-by" ambulance policy, under which 999 crews are instructed to take callers to the "right" hospital, not necessarily the nearest."

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Thinning, Fragile Skin? Shiny Skin? Itchy Skin? Taut Skin? Inner Thighs or Knees Rubbing and Chafing? Stretch Marks?

Thinning, Fragile Skin? Shiny Skin? Itchy Skin? Taut Skin? Over-stretched Skin? Painful Skin? Sensitive Skin? Red Skin? Cracked Heels? Age Spots? Skin Atrophy? Stretch Marks? Striae? Inner Thighs or Knees Rubbing and Chafing?

If you have some or all of these distressing symptoms then I have good news for you! - They can be helped by cutting down on your intake of salt.

It is very likely that you are sensitive to salt, and if you are, then you are probably overweight because the excess salt in your body will be causing extra water to be held in your bloodstream. - That extra blood volume exerts pressure on your skin from the inside, thus making it become taut, painful and overstretched, much thinner and more painful. - Your skin has probably reddened too, because with the skin thinner, the blood vessels are nearer to the surface, and since they are also swollen from the extra water in the bloodstream, the skin tends to take on the colour of the veins beneath its surface.

You have also probably been dieting at some time. - This also will have weakened your skin and contributed to its weakening. - Dieting is unnecessary, ineffective and often does harm. - Give it up!

If you cut down on the amount of salt you eat you will excrete some of the excess water and the blood vessels will not be so distended. Then the skin will also be less stressed and taut. You will also lose weight (the weight of the extra water excreted) and your blood pressure will be lowered. If you make sure that you eat plenty of fresh vegetables and fruit you will lose the excess water and the weight even faster...(o:

Lose weight by eating less salt! Go on! - Try it! - You will feel so much better!
See my website www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk
(The site does not sell anything and has no banners or sponsors or adverts - just helpful information.)

Latest research finds that TV and computer games do not make children into couch potatoes.

TV 'does not create couch potato children'


"Watching a lot of television or spending hours playing computer games does not turn teenagers into couch potatoes, psychologists say.

Latest research suggests children who spend longer than average in front of the television are just a active as those who do not.

Stuart Biddle, the professor of exercise and sport psychology at Loughborough University, yesterday argued that blaming television and computer games for the lack of exercise and growing weight problems among young people was too simplistic."

Actually, what is most important is the amount of salt/sodium in a child's diet. When children become fat it is essentially because they are eating salty food. Children are especially vulnerable to salt because of their small size and small blood volume, and because their blood vessels are weaker than those of adults. Salt, and the water it attracts to it, can more easily distend weak blood vessels than fully mature ones. The resulting increase in blood volume results in weight gain, as well as higher blood pressure and many other undesirable consequences. The smaller the child, the less salt they should have - and a baby, of course, should have no salt at all. - Babies can die if they are fed salty food.

Because children have much smaller bodies than adults it would be best if they had no more than half as much salt as adults. Most children, however, have much more than this because they eat so many snacks and instant foods.

Lose weight by eating less salt! Go on! - Try it! - You will feel so much better!- See my website www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk (The site does not sell anything and has no banners or sponsors or adverts - just helpful information.)

Two child deaths after taking Roche anti-flu drug, Tamiflu (oseltamivir)

Flu drug warning after two child deaths


"The anti-flu drug that has been stockpiled by the Department of Health for a future epidemic has been given a new pack warning after reports of teenagers falling to their deaths from tower blocks.

It has been reported that two 14-year-olds in Japan died in separate incidents while taking the
antiviral drug Tamiflu.

The European Medicines Agency (EMEA) says packets of the drug will include new advice to patients and doctors about "neuro-psychiatric" events.

The packets will say: "Convulsion, depressed levels of consciousness, abnormal behaviour, hallucinations and delirium have been reported during Tamiflu administration, leading in rare cases to accidental injury."

"The Department of Health has stockpiled 14 million doses of the drug - enough to treat a quarter of the population in an epidemic.

A spokesman from Roche said: "Following a recent review of the antiviral drug Tamiflu (oseltamivir), the EMEA and CHMP have proposed wording in the precautions section of the European label to include an observed increase of neuro-psychiatric reports, mainly in Japan, in those patients being treated for influenza.

"As clinical studies have already shown, patients not treated with Tamiflu experience delirium and other events as a natural course of the infection and its associated high fever. The changes in labelling are a precautionary measure."

She said reports of neuro-psychiatric events in patients taking Tamiflu were rare and there was no established causal relationship between the drug and the likelihood of neuro-psychiatric events in influenza patients."

The drug company's spokesperson has adopted the same stance as years ago was taken by the drug companies about appalling adverse side-effects from taking tranquillisers, i.e. she seeks to blame the illness itself, rather than the drug, for what happened to these two children.

You can to some extent boost an impaired immune system by reducing the amount of salt you eat. - See http://www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk/conditions.html - There are no adverse side-effects to cutting down on salt...

Lose weight by eating less salt! Go on! - Try it! - You will feel so much better!
See my website www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk
(The site does not sell anything and has no banners or sponsors or adverts - just helpful information.)

Friday, March 23, 2007

Rapid Weight Gain? Unexplained Weight Gain? Excessive Weight Gain during and following Pregnancy? Massive Weight Gain? Fluctuations in Weight? Yo-yo?

Your problem is sodium retention and water/fluid retention. This is often caused by prescription drugs like anti-depressants or steroids, but some other prescription drugs can also cause this. - All you need to do to lose some excess weight is to eat less salt/sodium and salty food, and at the same time make sure you are eating plenty of fresh vegetables and fruit. - AND GIVE UP DIETING!

Lose weight by eating less salt! Go on! - Try it! - You will feel so much better!
See my website www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk
(The site does not sell anything and has no banners or sponsors or adverts - just helpful information.)

See http://www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk/steroids.html

and http://www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk/ami.html

Sodium in foods

Doctors attack Lancet owner's arms fair links - Guardian


"A subsidiary of the publishers, Reed Exhibitions, runs six defence-related fairs around the world including the highly controversial Defence Services and Equipment International, supported by the Ministry of Defence, which will take place in London in September. Doctors are also complaining about the Shot - shooting, hunting, and outdoor trade - show in America for domestic weapons.

Scientists including Sir Michael Atiyah, former president of the Royal Society, have called for a boycott of their publications.

International academics led by Noam Chomsky have also lobbied the company in a letter, and last month the Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust sold £2m worth of shares in the company after three years of attempting to persuade it to halt its association with the arms trade.

Ian Gilmore, president of the Royal College of Physicians, and Michael Pelly, its international adviser, write today: "The Lancet is one of the most respected international medical journals and should not be linked to an industry involved in weapons designed to cause physical harm and death."

A second letter, from Peter Hall of Doctors for Human Rights, reads: "The Lancet, as the foremost medical journal on global health issues, engages with all threats to human longevity or mental and physical wellbeing ... it is thus shocking to hear that the publisher ... continues to align itself so supportively with the arms trade.""

A "disastrous failure" in the government's strategic planning allowed NHS trusts to indulge in reckless recruitment of extra staff.

MPs criticise 'boom and bust' NHS planning - Guardian article


"A "disastrous failure" in the government's strategic planning allowed NHS trusts to indulge in reckless recruitment of extra staff causing unsustainable pressure on the pay bill, a Labour-controlled Commons select committee said yesterday.

Between 1999 and 2004 the number of nurses employed by the NHS in England increased by more than 67,000 - about 340% more than the Department of Health intended. Over the same period the number of GPs grew by 4,098 - or 105% more than the official plan.

The health select committee said: "It was too easy to throw new staff into the task of meeting targets rather than consider the most cost-effective way of doing the job. Large pay increases were granted without adequate steps being taken to ensure increases in productivity in return." Increases in the NHS budget were seen as "a blank cheque for recruiting new staff". This caused the NHS to lurch "from boom to bust"."

Healthcare Commission found 55% of mental care inpatients have to share sleeping accommodation or bathrooms with members of the opposite sex.

Census reveals wide extent of mixed sex psychiatric wards


"Health inspectors will today publish conclusive evidence that the government's claim to have ended the scandal of mixed-sex psychiatric wards in the NHS was false, or at best misleading. In a census of all mental health establishments in England and Wales, the Healthcare Commission found 55% of inpatients have to share sleeping accommodation or bathrooms with members of the opposite sex.

Last year ministers rejected a report from the National Patient Safety Agency that recorded at least 19 rapes of mental health patients in England, and more than 100 other improper sexual incidents in psychiatric units in the previous two years.

Lord Warner, then health minister, said the allegations of rape were unsubstantiated. He told peers in July that 99% of NHS trusts providing mental health services met "single-sex objectives" that were set out in 2000, requiring all mental health units to provide totally separate sleeping, toilet and bathing accommodation for men and women. Lord Warner said mixed sex wards were an exception that might apply to "a very small number of patients, when admitted as an emergency".

But the census - conducted by the commission and government-funded mental health agencies - found only 45% of the 32,000 inpatients in NHS or private sector psychiatric wards on March 31 last year had the benefit of single-sex accommodation."

Transplants for slipped discs?

Patients with a slipped disc could be cured by transplant


"Surgeons have pioneered a radical cure for the slipped disc, a common cause of back pain, by using transplants from donors.

In the first operation of its kind, orthopaedic specialists in Hong Kong replaced slipped discs in five patients, who had suffered long-standing pain, with discs removed from three women aged between 20 and 30 who had died in accidents.

The operations were performed between March 2000 and January 2001 and the five patients - four men and a woman then aged between 41 and 56 - were followed up for five years. The results, reported in The Lancet today, show the transplants were still functioning well in all the patients and their pain had improved. None of the patients needed immunosuppressant drugs normally given to transplant recipients for life.

A slipped disc occurs when the jelly-like disc of cartilage that acts as a cushion between two vertebrae in the spine, slips or prolapses so it is pressing on the nerves causing the muscles of the back to go into spasm."

Obesity is caused by fluid retention, not by overeating. - The usual cause of fluid retention is sensitivity to salt.
Lose weight by eating less salt! Go on! - Try it! - You will feel so much better!
See my website www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk
(The site does not sell anything and has no banners or sponsors or adverts - just helpful information.)

Scientists, writing in The Lancet medical journal this week, say that alcohol and tobacco are more dangerous than ecstasy, LSD and cannabis.

Alcohol 'is more dangerous than illegal drugs'


"Alcohol and tobacco are more dangerous than ecstasy, LSD and cannabis, according to a new drug classification table proposed by leading experts.

Ecstasy, currently a class-A drug, possession of which can result in a seven-year prison sentence, is placed near the bottom of the new table.

At the other end of the list, which gives each substance a “harm score,” alcohol is ranked fifth - not far behind cocaine and heroin.

The new ranking method would make alcohol a class-A drug under Britain’s current ABC classification system, the experts said.

The team of scientists, led by Professor David Nutt, from the University of Bristol, and Professor Colin Blakemore, chief executive of the Medical Research Council, want the current ABC system scrapped.

The system is “arbitrary,” not based on scientific evidence and only increases the confusion surrounding drug issues, they said.

Writing in The Lancet medical journal, Prof Blakemore said the table is intended to guide policy makers when drawing up a replacement for the current Misuse of Drugs Act.""

"The drugs 'harm index'
1: Heroin
2: Cocaine
3: Barbiturates
4: Street Methadone
5: Alcohol
6: Ketamine
7: Benzodiazepines
8: Amphetamines
9: Tobacco
10: Buprenorphine
11: Cannabis
12: Solvents
13: 4-MTA
14: LSD
15: Methylphenidate
16: Anabolic steroids
17: GHB
18: Ecstasy
19: Alkyl Nitrates
20: Khat"

Well I'd like to suggest these scientists check out prescribed steroids and HRT. - In my informed opinion, as a steroid victim, these drugs are far more dangerous, and harm far more people than anabolic steroids, and should be much higher up the list. - I agree with them that benzodiazepines are very dangerous. - Benzodiazepines are another drug that doctors prescribe incautiously to their innocent victims/patients.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Varicose veins? Broken veins? Painful veins? Fragile veins? Swollen Veins? Spider Veins? Phlebitis? Haemorrhoids? Piles? Eating less salt will help!

Varicose veins? Broken Veins? Fragile Veins? Swollen Veins? Painful veins? Spider Veins? Phlebitis? Haemorrhoids? Piles? - These problems are associated with increased blood volume. - Increased blood volume is the result of fluid retention in the blood vessels. - The fluid retention is usually caused by sensitivity to salt/sodium. - If you cut down on the amount of salt/sodium that you eat the fluid retention will be reduced and all those veins problems will be less severe. - Why not try it? - It costs nothing and is perfectly safe. - Indeed, cutting down on salt improves your health in many ways, including loss of excess weight. See http://www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk/conditions.html

Lose weight by eating less salt! Go on! - Try it! - You will feel so much better!
See my website www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk
(The site does not sell anything and has no banners or sponsors or adverts - just helpful information.)

Warning about higher risks from home births

Health watchdog gives warning on higher risks of home births


"Women should be warned that babies born at home have a higher risk of dying, the health watchdog warns today. But prospective mothers should still be offered the choice of a home birth, as well as going to a midwife unit or hospital.

Final draft guidance from the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (Nice) suggests that women should be reassured that the risk of their baby dying during childbirth is low wherever they are born - 5.1 deaths per 1,000 births - although risks are higher if serious complications occur at home, rather than in hospital. The draft guidance, in a move that is likely to confuse some expectant mothers, also stresses that they should be told that the research into the various risks is variable and that the evidence is uncertain.

A Canadian study in 1999 found three perinatal deaths among 860 home births, one among 733 births in consultant-led units and no deaths among 563 born in midwife-led units. The new guidance recommends that more research and monitoring of the relative risks is needed, something the Department of Health is about to commission. The government's planned maternity strategy will aim to guarantee that by 2009 every woman will have a choice of whether she gives birth at home, in a birthing centre, or in a hospital."

Failings by welfare professionals during the years in which Eunice Spry ill-treated and tortured children in her care

Missed chances of ending 20 years of cruelty


"Welfare professionals missed a string of chances to raise concerns about a "sadistic" foster mother who subjected three children to physical and mental abuse over 20 years, it was claimed yesterday.

Among those who saw the children who were in the care of Eunice Spry were doctors, a psychiatrist and a dentist who treated one child six times after she suffered broken teeth.

Reports of concerns over the children reached social workers several times. The concerns were investigated but no action was taken.

On Tuesday Spry was found guilty of 26 charges including child cruelty, unlawful wounding and actual bodily harm at Bristol crown court."

Elderly nursing home residents left in pain by care staff

Scandal of elderly left in pain by care staff


"Elderly people in nursing homes are being left in "shocking pain" says a survey today, with two in five saying they are in constant agony, and others admitting to having suicidal thoughts.

The research, conducted confidentially among residents whose average age was 82, reveals the extent to which the frail and vulnerable are made to suffer unnecessarily.

It was carried out by the Patients Association, the independent lobby group led by Claire Rayner, a former nurse and midwife and well-known agony aunt."

Many painful conditions, e.g. osteoarthritis, can be improved and made less painful by reducing salt intake. See http://www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk/conditions.html

Lose weight by eating less salt! Go on! - Try it! - You will feel so much better!
See my website www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk
(The site does not sell anything and has no banners or sponsors or adverts - just helpful information.)

Should folic acid be added to bread to help prevent neural tube defects, such as spina bifida, affecting foetuses and causing disabilities in babies?

Support for folic acid in bread


"The campaign to add folic acid to bread in an attempt to stop hundreds of babies from being born with disabilities has been bolstered by research suggesting that the move was probably safe."

"Each year, up to 600 babies are born with neural tube defects, such as spina bifida, while several hundred pregnancies are aborted because foetuses are affected. Many scientists support the mandatory adding of folic acid, which contains the vitamin folate, because they say there is overwhelming evidence that it helps prevent neural tube defects. There is to be a three-month consultation.

Critics have described the plans as "mass medication"."

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

"Sadistic" foster mother, Eunice Spry, was found guilty yesterday of horrifying abuse of three children in her care over a period of 20 years

Foster mother inflicted 20 years of sadistic abuse on three children


"A "sadistic" foster mother was found guilty yesterday of subjecting three children in her care to a horrifying catalogue of physical and mental abuse over 20 years.

Eunice Spry, 62, beat the children with sticks and metal bars, scrubbed their skin with sandpaper and forced them to eat lard, bleach, vomit and even their own faeces.

She treated the children, two girls and a boy, as if they were her slaves, ordering one of them to stay in a wheelchair for four years even though she could walk so Spry could claim benefits for her.

Spry, a Jehovah's Witness and a pillar of her local community, would punish the children because she thought they were possessed by the devil. Once she kept two of them imprisoned, naked and starving, in a room for a month.

She forced them to run up and down the stairs and "tortured" them by making them take part in the "invisible chair" game, squatting for hours on end until they collapsed - then they were beaten.

The abuse, which lasted from 1986 to 2005, was not spotted by the authorities and last night the Gloucestershire Safeguarding Children Board (GSCB), the body now responsible for monitoring organisations in charge of children's welfare in the county, admitted mistakes were made."

Patient died of legionnaires' disease caught from a dirty showerhead in Bath's Royal United hospital (NHS Trust)

Hospital guilty over legionnaires' death


"A hospital where a patient died of legionnaires' disease caught from a dirty showerhead was criticised in court yesterday for "blatantly" ignoring safety guidance.

Daryl Eyles, 37, contracted the disease hours before he was due to leave hospital following successful treatment for cancer. Bath's Royal United hospital (RUH) yesterday pleaded guilty to charges that it carried out inadequate safety checks of its water system.

Jennifer Gunning, chair of the bench that heard the case at Bath magistrates court, referred the case to Bristol crown court because she did not feel the lower court's sentencing powers were sufficient. She said: "Guidance was available for more than 10 years, but this was blatantly not followed. The RUH management was inadequate. Mr Eyles died as a result of those failings and many other vulnerable patients were put at risk. We believe this to be so serious that our sentencing powers are not sufficient.""

A sympathetic article about Sally Clark and her suffering.

No redemption for Sally Clark - article in The Daily Telegraph


"Sally Clark walked out of prison four years ago, but she was never set free. Not in her head. Not in her own mind, where the demons still raged and screamed, even though the persona she showed to the outside world was bland and contained. The ordeal of being wrongly convicted for the murder of her two baby sons, then serving more than three years of a prison sentence and being released only on her second appeal was one that Clark could not recover from.

Who could? The look on her face, as she stood outside the High Court in January 2003, told its own story. In her moment of vindication, when it was proved that her sons had been cot death victims all along, Clark did not look triumphant or happy."

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

More than half of all pregnant women are left alone at some point while giving birth, survey suggests

More than half of women left alone while in labour, survey suggests


"More than half of all pregnant women are left alone at some point while giving birth, a survey commissioned by the Department of Health reveals today.

The poll, conducted by the national perinatal epidemiology unit (NPEU) and co-funded by the healthcare watchdog, the Healthcare Commission, suggests more than 300,000 women a year are being left for some period of time, with 75,000 of them suffering anxiety as a result.

While there are no guidelines that insist women are not left while giving birth, draft guidance from the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence proposes that women "should not be left alone once labour is established"."

Couch potatoes are costing NHS £1bn a year, claim Oxford University researchers, but they are mistaken.

Couch potatoes costing NHS £1bn a year, say researchers


"Britain's couch potato tendency is costing the NHS £1bn a year as diseases linked to physical inactivity rise, according to research published today.

Our sluggishness causes both disease and death, says the report by experts at Oxford University's department of public health. They estimate that in 2003-04 more than 35,000 deaths could have been avoided if Britons had enjoyed a more active lifestyle.

The study takes into account only the direct costs to the NHS of lack of exercise, focusing on the treatment of heart disease, stroke, breast and bowel cancers, and diabetes. There are also high indirect costs associated with days lost to sickness absence and premature death, private healthcare costs and home care."

These researchers are making the same mistake as those I wrote about in this blog entry http://aboutsalt.blogspot.com/2007/03/15-minutes-of-football-can-halve.html They are confusing cause with effect. Exercise does not reduce obesity and there is no evidence that it does.

http://www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk/story.html for the political and politically-related causes of obesity.

Calorie counting and advice about increasing exercise and reducing fat and carbohydrate intake to reduce obesity are ineffective, counter-productive and often damaging. - See the article in the British Medical Journal of November 2003 BMJ article for actual research on what happens when this advice is followed! - Over 800 obese adults were put on energy deficit diets, given diet sheets and plenty of instruction and help from trained staff, and apparently, visited fortnightly for a year, at the end of which they had GAINED weight! This mirrors the real experience of obese people, viz. - dieting makes you fat.

It is commonly accepted now, except by the 'experts', that less than 5% of dieters actually lose weight, and most gain weight as a result of dieting.

Obesity is not caused by overeating. It is caused by fluid retention, which in turn is usually caused by sensitivity to salt and excess weight is easily lost by cutting down on salt and salty food.

Lose weight by eating less salt! Go on! - Try it! - You will feel so much better!
See my website
(The site does not sell anything and has no banners or sponsors or adverts - just helpful information.)

Clenbuterol: illegal weight-loss wonder drug with a host of dangerous side-effects. - The SAFE way to lose excess weight is to eat less salt/sodium.

Clenbuterol: The new weight-loss wonder drug gripping Planet Zero


"Clenbuterol is illegal in this country for human or even animal use, to treat asthma or anything else. This is because it causes side effects, such as palpitations and arrhythmia [irregular heartbeat], and has been responsible for several cases of poisoning in humans. This may not trouble Planet Skinny, but it is seriously worrying doctors on both sides of the Atlantic.

In most countries in Europe, Clenbuterol is forbidden for use in animals that will enter the food chain. But that does not always prevent its use. Because it increases muscle definition and reduces fat, livestock are often dosed with the drug to make them appear more attractive to buyers. In Spain in 1994, 140 people were hospitalised after they consumed meat tainted with the drug and suffered dizziness, heart palpitations, breathing difficulties, shakes and headaches. Just over a year ago, the Chinese newspaper People's Daily reported that 336 people in Shanghai had been poisoned after eating pork tainted with Clenbuterol. The drug had been banned by the Chinese government in the 1990s.

Last week a Home Office spokesman told The Independent: "Clenbuterol is a hormone growth stimulant and a Class C drug. It is an offence to supply or have intent to supply Clenbuterol. There is no possession offence - although obviously if somebody had so much that they seemed to be intending to supply, they may be prosecuted. It carries a maximum sentence of 14 years imprisonment and/or an unlimited fine.""

All that is normally necessary to lose excess weight is to eat less salt, i.e. to reduce one's sodium intake, and to eat plenty of fruit and vegetables. This is the SAFE, reliable way to lose weight fast.

Lose weight by eating less salt! Go on! - Try it! - You will feel so much better!
See my website www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk
(The site does not sell anything and has no banners or sponsors or adverts - just helpful information.)

15 minutes of football 'can halve obesity risk' - nonsensical claim made by University of Bristol team. Professor Andy Ness.

15 minutes of football 'can halve obesity risk'


"Kicking a football around for just 15 minutes a day can halve a child's risk of becoming obese, a study has found. Even small increases in daily activity, such as walking to school instead of going by car, could have impressive long-term results, researchers say.

The official advice is that children need an hour of moderate to vigorous exercise a day - long enough to put off many parents who do not have the time to take their children to the sports centre. But a quarter-of-an-hour's kickaround may be all that is needed, according to the University of Bristol team."

"Professor Andy Ness, of the University of Bristol, said: "It has been really surprising to us how even small amounts of exercise appear to have dramatic results. If you say to parents they have got to take their children for an hour-long early morning run, they will throw up their hands and say it is impossible. But if you say kicking a ball around for 15 minutes or going for a quick swim is all that is needed then they may well feel that is manageable. And it is probably good for the family, too."

Professor Ness said girls were no more likely to be obese than boys and that their lower activity levels indicated they were using "other strategies" to stay slim, such as "dietary restraint". But claims by rival researchers that activity levels of children were genetically pre-determined were wide of the mark."

The claim that "Kicking a football around for just 15 minutes a day can halve a child's risk of becoming obese" is completely untrue. One of the problems with this sort of study is that the researchers confuse cause with effect. When children have become overweight - usually by eating salty food - exercise is much more difficult and tiring for them so they tend to do less. - Doing less exercise is not the cause of the overweight, but the result of it.

When children become fat it is essentially because they are eating salty food. Children are especially vulnerable to salt because of their small size and small blood volume, and because their blood vessels are weaker than those of adults. Salt, and the water it attracts to it, can more easily distend weak blood vessels than fully mature ones. The resulting increase in blood volume and other fluid retention results in weight gain, as well as higher blood pressure and many other undesirable consequences. The smaller the child, the less salt they should have - and a baby, of course, should have no salt at all. - Babies can die if they are fed salty food.

Because children have much smaller bodies than adults it would be best if they had no more than half as much salt as adults. Most children, however, have much more than this because they eat so many snacks and instant foods. Just one cheeseburger, for instance, contains almost double the recommended daily salt maximum for children. There are high amounts of salt in packet soups, instant noodles, ketchup and sauces, sausages, burgers and savoury snacks. Fat children will lose weight fast if they eat less salt. And even faster still if they eat plenty of fresh fruit and unsalted vegetables, because these are rich in potassium, which helps to displace sodium from the body.

http://www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk/children.html and http://aboutsalt.blogspot.com/2007/03/obese-do-not-try-to-lose-weight-by.html and http://aboutsalt.blogspot.com/2006/10/exercise-has-little-effect-on.html
and http://aboutsalt.blogspot.com/2006/11/do-you-believe-that-obesity-is-caused.html

Lose weight by eating less salt! Go on! - Try it! - You will feel so much better!
See my website www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk
(The site does not sell anything and has no banners or sponsors or adverts - just helpful information.)

All-party public accounts committee of MPs reports financial mismanagement and lack of control over NHS billions

MPs expose lack of control over NHS billions


"A devastating insight into financial mismanagement at all levels of the NHS - from Government ministers down to hospital bureaucrats - is provided by a committee of MPs today.

The report by the all-party public accounts committee exposes how billions of pounds of taxpayers' money is being poured into a health system with inadequate financial controls and low levels of accounting expertise.

The MPs conclude that NHS structures are so inadequate that the Department of Health has no idea what the effect of last year's total deficit of £570 million is having on patient care.

The deficit was recorded despite a massive rise in NHS spending from £69.7 billion in 2004-5 to £76.4 billion in 2005-6. In this financial year the amount being pumped in will soar again to £92.6 billion.

Edward Leigh, the chairman of the committee, said "weak control of finances" and "lack of interest" by doctors in the sums they were spending were to blame for many of the deficit problems.

In no less than one in three NHS organisations, auditors had raised concerns "about the financial management capabilities of general management".

In one in four they were worried about the financial performance of non-executive directors.

The committee said that while the Department of Health had no "overall picture" of the effect of deficits on services to patients, it was clear they were adversely affecting the level and quality of care."

The cost of parking at your NHS hospital: £95m

The cost of parking at your hospital: £95m


"NHS hospitals were yesterday accused of exploiting the "most vulnerable" after they were found to have made more than £95 million in parking charges last year.

Patients attending for treatment and relatives or friends visiting people in hospital were charged up to £3.50 an hour despite paying to build car parks through their taxes.

Last night, the cancer charity Macmillan, which obtained details through Freedom of Information, called for an end to the "shameful" charges. Two trusts each raised more than £2 million and a further 30 raised more than £1 million each from "outrageous charges on the weak and vulnerable''.

Southampton University Hospitals NHS Trust took £2,414,672 and Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust took £2,263,297.

Patients and visitors often have no choice but to use hospital parking, which used to be free. Some out-patients are too weak to walk further from their car and many of those who visit in-patients are themselves elderly or infirm.

The charity Macmillan Cancer Support Research raised the parking issue yesterday on behalf of cancer patients who have to make regular hospital visits. It said the £95 million total was shocking.

Judy Beard, Macmillan's acting chief executive, said: "Cancer patients spend hundreds of pounds each year on hospital parking. Macmillan wants to see all cancer patients travelling regularly for treatment to be able to park free."

"Hospitals have also started to charge for bedside telephones and television sets and many have replaced charity-run cafes with more expensive cafeterias."

Monday, March 19, 2007

Salt consumption in Britain is falling but still 50 per cent higher than advised, claims Food Standards Agency.

Salt consumption falling but still 50 per cent higher than advised


"Salt consumption in Britain has dropped but is still on average 50 per cent higher than the recommended amount, new research claims. Tests on 1,287 adults showed their average salt intake was 9g per day compared to 9.5g when tests were done in 2001.

But consumption is still higher than the Government's national target of 6g per day, the Food Standards Agency said.

The urinary sodium tests carried out in 2005-06 showed men consumed an average 10.2g of salt per day compared to 11g in 2001.

Women's average intake was less at 7.6g per day - down from 8.1g in 2005/06.

The results follow a Food Standards Agency campaign encouraging people to cut their salt intake. The campaign warns that 75 per cent of salt eaten in Britain is found in processed food."

It is scandalous that successive governments and their negligent Departments of Health delayed until 2003 warning British citizens that salt intake could be too high and could cause serious illness and early death. AND THEY ARE STILL NOT TELLING PEOPLE THAT TO LOSE EXCESS WEIGHT THEY NEED TO REDUCE SALT/SODIUM INTAKE AND NOT REDUCE CALORIES, BECAUSE OBESITY IS CAUSED BY FLUID RETENTION, NOT BY EATING TOO MANY CALORIES. - I certainly do not believe that all the expensive government advisors are so ill-informed that they do not know this to be the case. I believe that the reason we are being constantly exhorted to eat less salt is in the pious hope that obesity will thereby be reduced - but will be attributed to an increase in exercise, about which we are also being constantly exhorted. 'Experts'on eating problems have a big eating problem of their own; they do not relish having to eat their own words. - They are hoping to get away with it - get away with not being forced to admit that their calorie and overeating claims of the past are not only needless and ineffective, but are also counter-productive - more likely to cause weight gain than weight loss in obese people, because eating insufficient calories causes increased water retention in the blood stream. And of course the ones who know the truth are hoping desperately to hide the truth so that they do not get sued by the thousands and thousands of innocent people who have been greatly harmed by the misinformation the 'experts' have been giving for many years. - If the truth were to be told - that to lose excess weight the calorie myth must be abandoned and the obese person needs to cut down seriously on salt/sodium intake - then obese people could concentrate on eating less sodium instead of wasting any more of their lives on the dangerous course of eating fewer calories than the body needs. - And they would rapidly and safely lose weight - without hunger, without drugs, without strenuous exercise and without fail.

1 Nutritional Aspects of Cardiovascular Disease 1994 This COMA report considered the evidence for a causal relationship between the consumption of sodium and both the level of blood pressure and the rise in blood pressure with age. A statement in the report said it recommended: "A reduction in the average intake of common salt (sodium chloride) by the adult population from the current level of about 9g/day to about 6g/day. There needs to be a gradual reduction in the amount of sodium from salt added to processed food and food manufacturers, caterers, and individuals should explore and grasp the opportunity for reducing the sodium content of foods and meals." The Chief Medical Officer at that time, accepted all the recommendations in this COMA report except for the recommendation to reduce salt. The reason for this is not clear but is believed to be pressure from industry. Department of Health (1994), "Nutritional Aspects of Cardiovascular Disease", HMSO, London.

2 Dietary Reference Values 1991 This COMA report considered that: "Current sodium intakes are needlessly high and we caution against any trend towards increased intakes". It set its recommended intake for salt, as with all the other recommended intakes for nutrients, on the basis of the balance of risks and benefits, which might practically be expected to occur. The RNI for a particular population group is defined as the amount of the nutrient that is enough or more than enough for about 97% of the people in this group. The Reference Nutrient Intake (RNI) for sodium for adults was set at 1600 mg/day. This is equivalent to approximately 4g of salt, if all the sodium was present in the diet as sodium chloride. This is considerably less than the present intake of 9-12g. Department of Health (1991), "Dietary Reference values for food, energy and nutrients for the United Kingdom", HMSO, London

I wonder why The Chief Medical Officer in the early '90s apparently did nothing to implement the recommendation of a maximum of 4g of salt a day, and apparently gave greater consideration to the desires of the food industry than to the health of the nation, and I wonder how many deaths and how much terrible suffering he was, therefore, personally responsible for? And I wonder why his successors in the post were so tardy in taking effective steps to give warnings about salt consumption? - Political considerations? - What though, could be more important in this matter than the health of the members of public - the electorate - the tax-payers, in fact?

I consider the failure to put pressure on food manufacturers and caterers to reduce the sodium content of foods and meals until recent times to be a dereliction of duty of successive political administrations and health departments. - I remember buying McCance and Widdowson's 'Composition of Foods' in the late '90s, at considerable cost, in order to discover how much sodium there was in food. There was no way consumers could get this information from the pack.

Here's a serious suggestion for the government: - put a punitive tax on table salt.

For fuller discussion on the political considerations that have caused the obesity epidemic you need to read the whole of page

Lose weight by eating less salt! Go on! - Try it! - You will feel so much better! See my website http://www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk/ (The site does not sell anything and has no banners or sponsors or adverts - just helpful information.)

"I stuffed their mouths with gold," said Aneurin Bevan, speaking of the only way he had been able to get the consultants into the NHS when it started.

When gold won't buy quiet


""I stuffed their mouths with gold," said Aneurin Bevan, recalling the only way in which he had been able to silence the shrill protests of the consultants who might otherwise have strangled the NHS at birth. After a weekend in which doctors took to the street in protest, ministers may take comfort from knowing that for the government to encounter resentment from medics is nothing new. But ministers may now face a deeper difficulty too, in the attitudes of taxpayers. Helped along by a Conservative party showing a new adeptness in presentation, the idea gaining ground is that the government has once again been dishing out the gold to the doctors, but that this time round it has not been having the effect it should."

Well the doctors are still grossly overpaid and are still for all practical purposes unaccountable to the patients whom nominally they serve, because the NHS complaints procedures are in practice an exercise in futility and exhaustion for complainants. Despite all the 'gold' lavished on the doctors, we have an extremely poor health service. - Added to poor service, our once-clean hospitals are now dirty, and many patients fear to go into them in case they catch one of the hospital acquired infections...

The death of the solicitor Sally Clark, wrongly convicted of murdering her 2 baby sons,has led to calls for support for miscarriage of justice victims

Call to support prisoners freed on appeal


"The sudden death of the solicitor Sally Clark, who was wrongly convicted of murdering her two baby sons, has prompted calls for government support for miscarriage of justice victims. Mrs Clark, 42, was found dead at her Essex home on Friday. A postmortem will be carried out today.

John McManus, one of the founders of the Miscarriages of Justice Organisation, said people who left prison after their convictions were overturned needed specialist counselling. "The death of Sally Clark is the day we have been waiting for and dreading," he said.

"Something like this was bound to happen. People like Sally Clark go through hell after being released. We don't know how she died yet. But it will have been stress-related - you can be sure of that.""

Patients' lives could be being put at risk because one in 10 scan results are not reported to doctors.

Results of 1 in 10 scans not reported


"Patients' lives could be being put at risk because one in 10 scan results are not reported to doctors, a report by the healthcare watchdog warns today.

The Healthcare Commission found that the results of almost 10% of diagnostic scans - including x-rays, ultrasounds and MRI or CT scans - are never formally reported to the clinicians who order them.

In some cases there will be an agreement that an x-ray is fine if no written result is offered; in others, doctors may have been told the results informally. Clinicians may also look at scans and reach their own conclusions. But such an approach risks leaving injuries or serious conditions undetected - particularly when scans have been ordered by GPs, who will not normally be able to view the images, or by relatively- inexperienced A&E doctors."

Lose weight by eating less salt! Go on! - Try it! - You will feel so much better! See my website www.wildeaboutsteroids.co.uk (The site does not sell anything and has no banners or sponsors or adverts - just helpful information.)