REPORT: LARGEST OUTBREAK IN GERMAN HISTORY CAUSED BY IMPORTED STRAWBERRIES
The largest recorded foodborne illness outbreak in German history was caused by frozen strawberries imported from China, according to a study published in the February issue of Eurosurveillance. At least 11,000 cases of norovirus were reported by 390 institutions – mostly schools and childcare facilities – between Sept. 19 and Oct. 7, 2012. Epidemiologists were... Continue Reading
Blood Pressure Drugs Tied to Risk of Falls
Older adults who take blood pressure drugs have a greater risk of serious falls, a new study reports. Researchers looked at nearly 5,000 Americans over age 70 during a three-year period. They found that those who were taking antihypertensive medications had a 30 to 40 percent greater likelihood of experiencing severe fall-related injuries like hip fractures and head trauma. A majority of older adults have high blood pressure, and antihypertensive medications are among the most commonly used drugs nationwide. Though the drugs help lower the risk of strokes and heart attacks, the size of the reduction in risk is comparable to the increase in risk of serious injuries from falls, said Dr. Mary E. Tinetti, chief of geriatrics at Yale-New Haven Hospital “The question is, are we trading off the benefit in terms of stroke prevention for the increased risk in serious fall injuries?” she said.Continue Reading
Cooking Meat 'May Be Dementia Risk'
Browning meat in the oven, grill or frying pan produces chemicals which may increase the risk of developing dementia, U,S. researchers suggest. Advanced glycation end (AGE) products have been linked to diseases such as type-2 diabetes. Mice fed a high-AGEs diet had a build-up of dangerous proteins in the brain and impaired cognitive function. Experts said the results were "compelling" but did not provide "definitive answers". AGEs are formed when proteins or fats react with sugar. This can happen naturally and during the cooking process. Researchers at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, in New York, tested the effect of AGEs on mice and people. The animal experiments showed that a diet rich in AGEs affects the chemistry of the brain. It leads to a build-up of defective beta amyloid protein - a hallmark of Alzheimer's disease. The mice eating a low-AGEs diet were able to prevent the production of damaged amyloid. The mice performed less well in physical and thinking tasks after their AGEs-rich diet. A short-term analysis of people over 60 suggested a link between high levels of AGEs in the blood and cognitive decline. .Continue Reading