Dr. Rath Health Foundation

Dr. Rath Health Foundation

Responsibility for a healthy world Dr. Rath Research Institute 100+ Studies Published In PubMed

Newsletter Archive

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February 13, 2009

Latest News Updates

Keep up-to-date on the latest health and politics news with our regular updates and analysis of the key stories from around the world.

Natural Health News

February 10, 2009

Vigorous exercise may help prevent vision loss
There's another reason to dust off those running shoes. Vigorous exercise may help prevent vision loss, according to a pair of studies from the U.S. Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. The studies tracked approximately 31,000 runners for more than seven years, and found that running reduced the risk of both cataracts and age-related macular degeneration.
Read article at physorg.com

February 9, 2009

Mediterranean diet associated with lower risk of cognitive impairment
Eating a Mediterranean diet appears to be associated with less risk of mild cognitive impairment—a stage between normal aging and dementia—or of transitioning from mild cognitive impairment into Alzheimer's disease, according to a report in the February issue of Archives of Neurology.
Read article at physorg.com

February 6, 2009

Vitamin D reduces risk of multiple sclerosis
Taking vitamin D supplements during pregnancy and in the early years of life could reduce the risk of developing multiple sclerosis, research suggested yesterday. Scientists have discovered that the chances of developing MS are influenced by vitamin D levels coupled with a common gene variant. Children with the genetic mutation may be more at risk of developing the disease if they lack vitamin D while growing in the womb or during their early years of life.
Read article at scotsman.com (Scotland/UK)

February 5, 2009

Vitamin pills found to reduce migraines
Migraines can be a headache to treat, says an Australian professor who has identified simple vitamin supplements that can offer relief. Professor Lyn Griffiths put 50 long-term migraine sufferers on a six-month course of vitamin B and folate supplements and said the results were very positive. Study participants reported a "drastic improvement in headache frequency, pain severity and associated disability", said Prof Griffiths of Griffith University's Genomics Research Centre (GRC).
Read article on theage.com website (Australia)

For more natural health news, click here.

See also our 2001-2008 news archive, by clicking here.

Pharma "Business with Disease" News

February 10, 2009

Elderly patients 'at risk of adverse drug reactions in hospital'
The cocktail of medications taken by many older people is contributing to a high number of adverse reactions in hospital, a new study has found. Research into more than 3,000 patients found that one in seven had had a reaction to drugs they received in hospital. Most susceptible were elderly patients, the study found, who were often already taking a handful of different medications.
Read article in the Daily Telegraph (UK)
Comment: Previous studies have shown that 250,000 people in Britain are admitted to hospital every year because of adverse reactions to a variety of prescribed drugs.

February 8, 2009

Thalidomide 'was created by the Nazis'
The damaging drug may have been developed as an antidote to nerve gas
The morning sickness drug thalidomide, which caused pregnant women to give birth to babies without arms and legs, was first developed by the Nazis, probably as part of their chemical weapons programme, according to new research. Two separate academics have revealed the discovery of documents indicating that the drug did not originate with Chemie Grünenthal, the postwar German chemical firm, as has always been claimed. If, as their research suggests, thalidomide was first developed by scientists working in wartime Germany, it could have implications for the liability of the German government. So far it has given compensation only to German victims, although the drug was distributed in at least 46 countries.
Read article in The Sunday Times (UK)

February 5, 2009

Pharmaceutical Advertising Biases Journals Against Vitamin Supplements
It may be the worst-kept secret in medicine: pharmaceutical money buys journal influence. What the public has so long suspected has now been demonstrated in a recently published peer-reviewed study. Researchers from Wake Forest University School of Medicine and the University of Florida found that "in major medical journals, more pharmaceutical advertising is associated with publishing fewer articles about dietary supplements." Furthermore, they found that more pharmaceutical company advertising resulted in the journal having more articles with "negative conclusions about dietary supplement safety."
Read news release from the Orthomolecular Medicine News Service at orthomolecular.org

February 4, 2009

New Evidence Of Hormone Therapy Causing Breast Cancer
Postmenopausal women who take combined estrogen plus progestin menopausal hormone therapy for at least five years double their annual risk of breast cancer, according to new analyses from a major study that clearly establishes a link between hormone use and breast cancer, Stanford researchers say. The multi-center study also found that women on hormones can quickly reduce their risks of cancer simply by stopping the therapy.
Read article at sciencedaily.com

February 4, 2009

Over 800 complaints on quit-smoking aid reported to Health Canada
A drug commonly used to help people quit smoking is the focus of more than 800 complaints from Canadian users, many of them reporting mood swings, depression or suicidal thoughts. Of the 818 complaints about Champix (varenicline tartrate) Health Canada has received complaints on its adverse reaction database, 520 involved psychiatric problems.
Read article on the CBC News website (Canada)

For more pharma "business with disease" news, click here.

See also our 2001-2008 news archive, by clicking here.

GMO News

February 10, 2009

Biotech industry fakes growth of GM crops in Europe
On the eve of the release of annual industry-sponsored figures, a new report released today by Friends of the Earth International reveals the failure of genetically modified crops around the world, and how statistics showing their increase in Europe have been manipulated. The new 'Who Benefits from GM Crops?' 2009 report exposes inconsistencies in how the European biotech lobby group EuropaBio has reported the total area planted to GM crops. The group inflated the figures by almost a quarter in 2008 to mask an actual decline. The misleading numbers are used by companies to make genetically modified farming appear more widespread than it really is. In reality public opposition and safety-conscious European governments mean that planting of GM crops in Europe has decreased every year since 2005 with an overall drop of 35 per cent.
Read press statement on the Friends of the Earth Europe website
Comment: As we have reported previously, 2008 was a particularly bad year for the GM multinationals. Given these latest revelations, therefore, it seems safe to predict that 2009 appears unlikely to bring better tidings for what is rapidly turning into one of the world’s most unpopular industries.

February 9, 2009

Bt Brinjal Unfit for Human Consumption
Expert independent scientist verdict contradicts Indian regulatory authorities on biosafety of GM aubergine
Release of Bt brinjal into the environment for food, feed and cultivation may present a serious risk for human and animal health; the GM aubergine is unfit for consumption. That's the verdict of French scientist Professor Gilles-Eric Seralini of the Committee for Independent Research and Information on Genetic Engineering (CRIIGEN), who carried out the first ever independent assessment of Monsanto-Mahyco's dossier on toxicity tests submitted to the Indian regulatory authorities.
Read press release on the Institute for Science in Society (ISIS) website (UK)

February 6, 2009

GM crops 'may give lower yields'
US researchers have criticised claims that genetically modified (GM) crops can help feed a hungry world. GM crops have been a "spectacular under-performer" in terms of yields, according to Doug Gurian-Sherman of the Union of Concerned Scientists. Recent yield gains are just as likely to result from conventional breeding techniques as they are from genetic engineering, he says.
Read article on the BBC News website (UK)

February 1, 2009

US expert calls for ban on genetically modified food items
An American expert on Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) has sought an immediate ban on GMOs as he has claimed that there was now irrefutable and overwhelming evidence found that GMOs are dangerous threats to human health.
Read article at webindia123.com

January 30, 2009

Govt halts marketing of genetically modified food crop
New Delhi: With new scientific studies now finding genetically modified foods not fully safe for human consumption, the government has put a 'temporary halt' on the commercialisation of BT brinjal, the move prompted by the Supreme Court’s special representative at the Centre’s Genetic Engineering Approval Committee.
Read article on the IBN Live website (India)

January 30, 2009

Hungary to defy European Commission call to scrap ban on GMO crops
Hungary will keep its ban on GMO (genetically modified organisms) maize imports and the planting of GMO seeds, Agriculture Ministry undersecretary Zoltán Gőgös announced. The European Commission recently called on Hungary to entirely lift its GMO ban.
Read article at realdeal.hu (Hungary)

See also our 2001-2008 news archive, by clicking here.

Other Health-related News

February 12, 2009

Codex misinformation creates public confusion
Are you confused over what impact Codex will have on food and dietary supplements? If so, we're not surprised, given the rampant misinformation about Codex that abounds on the internet.
Read article on the website of the Alliance for Natural Health (ANH) (UK)
Comment: Much of the misinformation appears to originate from the US-based Natural Solutions Foundation (NSF). For more about the NSF and its founders, click here.

February 12, 2009

Women’s Multivitamin Study
Another study designed to fail? We think so.
Read article on the website of the Alliance for Natural Health (ANH) (UK)

February 10, 2009

When is a Vitamin Not a Vitamin? When the FDA Says So!
In September of 2005, Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN) senior vice president of scientific and international affairs, John Hathcock, PhD, wrote a letter to the FDA stating that “Pyridoxamine is unequivocally a dietary ingredient because it is one of the three primary natural forms of vitamin B6, and it is one of the two predominant forms in animal products used as human foods.” But now, thanks to a petition filed with the FDA by Biostratum, the North Carolina-based manufacturer of a pyridoxamine-based drug called Pyridorin, which is designed to prevent the progression of diabetic nephropathy (kidney disease), on January 12 the FDA announced that pyridoxamine dihydrochloride was a “new drug.” This means that the FDA has now effectively prevented any substance containing pyridoxamine from being marketed as a dietary supplement. Never mind that the fish on your lunch salad and the chicken on your dinner table both contain pyridoxamine, as does brewer’s yeast!
Read action alert on the website of the American Association for Health Freedom (AAHF) (USA)

February 10, 2009

Malnutrition affecting '3m in UK'
People suffering from malnutrition - or at risk of it - in the UK stands at three million, experts believe. It is the clearest idea yet of the scale of the problem after those in the community as well as hospitals and care homes were included in the count. The British Association for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition said the problem was costing £13bn a year to treat and urged GPs to do more.
Read article on the BBC News website (UK)

February 9, 2009

Vitamin D deficiency may harm brain function: study
NEW YORK - Low levels of vitamin D increase the risk of cognitive impairment in the elderly, according to findings from the nationally representative, population-based Health Survey for England 2000. Despite the theoretical support for the role of vitamin D in maintaining brain function in old age, clinical data are lacking, the researchers note. Therefore, Dr. David J. Llewellyn and his associates studied 1766 adults, aged 65 or older, from whom blood samples were obtained to measure circulating vitamin D levels. Cognitive function was measured using the Abbreviated Mental Test, which includes 10 questions to assess attention, orientation in time and space, and memory. Based on scores of 70 percent or less, 212 subjects (12 percent) were deemed to be cognitively impaired. The researchers found a significant association between lower levels of vitamin D and cognitive impairment.
Read article on the China Daily website

February 6, 2009

EFSA attacked for lack of transparency
The Alliance for Natural Health (ANH) has continued its assault on the European Food Safety Authority’s (EFSA) with a litany of criticisms and questions in an open letter to the assessor’s executive director, Catherine Geslain-Lanéelle. ANH, which lobbies for better food laws in Europe, said EFSA failed to demonstrate transparency in its methods, was dismissive of criticism and in denial about “substantive scientific or legal issues”. The open letter was sent to EFSA on February 3 and was prompted, ANH said, by EFSA’s response (published here) to previous ANH criticism of the manner in which the Parma-based assessor had conducted a review of a fluoride source.
Read article at nutraingredients.com

February 3, 2009

The EU regulatory pressure pot: a major threat to our future health
The regulatory pressure pot that aims to stop 500 million Europeans accessing therapeutically useful natural health products is approaching bursting point. Within two months we should see what vitamin and mineral dosages the European Commission aims to set as maximums across the EU. January 2010 then signals the delayed ban of a host of vitamin and mineral forms that won't have been ‘proven’ safe or bioavailable.
Read article on the website of the Alliance for Natural Health (ANH) (UK)

February 2, 2009

EU Food Authority double standard: Fluoride source approved for use in Supplements
According to an article in Nutraingredients.com, the European Food Safety Agency (EFSA) expressed a positive opinion regarding calcium fluoride as a source of fluoride in food supplements. That same day, another fluoride compound was approved - sodium monofluorophosphate - but this one was not mentioned in the Nutraingredients report. These opinions appear to be in stark contrast with the over-cautious evaluation of vital nutrients (vitamins and minerals) in progress. A scientific dossier proving the safety of those nutrient sources is required before EFSA will consent to their use in supplements, and limiting dosages are being considered to make sure there is not a shadow of a possibility of an 'adverse effect'.
Read post by Sepp Hasslberger at healthfreedomnet.ning.com

January 29, 2009

Fluoride: Now it can be added to our food
Fluoride can now be added to foods manufactured and supplied in Europe. It’s been classified as a safe supplement, according to Europe’s highest authority on food standards. The decision means that food manufacturers can include sodium monofluorophosphate, the common form of fluoride found in toothpaste and mouth washes, to their products. The decision, by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), has angered the Alliance for Natural Health (ANH), the consumer pressure group, which is calling for an immediate enquiry.
Read article on the What Doctors Don't Tell You (WDDTY) website (UK)

January 15, 2009

Government bans all use of mercury in Sweden
The Government today decided to introduce a blanket ban on mercury. The ban means that the use of dental amalgam in fillings will cease and that it will no longer be permitted to place products containing mercury on the Swedish market.
Read press release from the Swedish Ministry of the Environment

For more health-related news, click here.

See also our 2001-2008 news archive, by clicking here.

Political News

February 6, 2009

Big Brother Thriving in Britain
Already the most spied-upon people in the world, Britons risk forfeiting even more privacy unless new restrictions are put in place
New powers are needed to combat a culture of "pervasive" surveillance that has seen the UK become the most spied upon country in the world, the Lords said today. The UK is now watched by more about four million CCTV cameras and details of seven per cent of the population is held in the National DNA Database (NDNAD) – more than any other country, according to chairman of the House of Lords Constitution Committee Lord Goodlad. At the same time national databases designed to hold personal information on nearly every UK citizen are being set up across Whitehall, from the NHS Care Records Service to the ID cards National Identity Register, according to a report by the committee released today. Meanwhile businesses and banks are gathering data on the public from CCTV, web browsing behaviour, CRM systems and tracking the use of loyalty cards, the report says, adding that the government also wants access to this data, it added. "Every time we make a telephone call, send an email, browse the internet, or even walk down our local high street, our actions may be monitored and recorded," the report said.
Read article at businessweek.com

January 31, 2009

Governments across Europe tremble as angry people take to the streets
France paralysed by a wave of strike action, the boulevards of Paris resembling a debris-strewn battlefield. The Hungarian currency sinks to its lowest level ever against the euro, as the unemployment figure rises. Greek farmers block the road into Bulgaria in protest at low prices for their produce. New figures from the biggest bank in the Baltic show that the three post-Soviet states there face the biggest recessions in Europe. It's a snapshot of a single day – yesterday – in a Europe sinking into the bleakest of times. But while the outlook may be dark in the big wealthy democracies of western Europe, it is in the young, poor, vulnerable states of central and eastern Europe that the trauma of crash, slump and meltdown looks graver.
Read article in the Guardian (UK)

For more political news, visit the news pages on the website of the International Alliance for Health, Peace and Social Justice, and the news page on the European Referendum Initiative website.

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