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Saturday, February 28, 2015

2/28/15 Health News: Secret Treaty Leads to Food Safety Labeling Concerns ♦ NC Salmonella Outbreak ♦ Oat breakfast cereals may contain mold-related toxin ♦ Plus More

Trans-Pacific Partnership could prevent clearer food – health advocates Australia’s Pacific free-trade deal could stand in the way of clear country-of-origin labelling being considered by the Abbott government in the wake of the hepatitis A outbreak linked to imported frozen berries Continue Reading
NC SALMONELLA OUTBREAK LINKED TO RE-COOKED PULLED PORK  A Salmonella outbreak in North Carolina this past fall that sickened dozens of people has been linked to re-cooked pulled pork served at a church conference. According to news reports published Friday, the problem was probably smoked Boston butt prepared overnight by a member of the Living Word Tabernacle Church in Bessemer City, NC, and then re-cooked the... Continue Reading
Oat breakfast cereals may contain a common mold-related toxin  Oats are often touted for boosting heart health, but scientists warn that the grain and its products might need closer monitoring for potential mold contamination. They report that some oat-based breakfast cereals in the US contain a mold-related toxin called ochratoxin A that's been linked to kidney cancer in animal studies Continue Reading
Omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin D may control brain serotonin, affecting behavior and psychiatric disorders  Although essential marine omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin D have been shown to improve cognitive function and behavior in the context of certain brain disorders, the underlying mechanism has been unclear. In a new paper, serotonin is explained as the possible missing link tying together why vitamin D and marine omega-3 fatty acids might ameliorate the symptoms associated with a broad array of brain disorders.Continue Reading

Adults with disabilities screened for cancer less often  Adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities are much less likely to be screened for colorectal cancer, research shows. "As individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities live longer, their risk of developing chronic conditions like cancer increases. Suboptimal screening may contribute to a greater cancer burden," Continue Reading

Canada: Updated sliced Mortadella recall


The food recall warning issued February 25, 2015 has been updated to include additional product information. This additional information was identified during the ongoing food borne illness outbreak investigation in Ontario.
Lady York Foods is recalling sliced Mortadella products from the marketplace due to possible Listeria monocytogenes contamination. Consumers should not consume the recalled products described below.
If other high-risk products are recalled, the CFIA will notify the public through updated Food Recall Warnings.
The following products were sold from Lady York Foods, 2939 Dufferin St., North York, Ontario.
This recall applies to all Mortadella products sliced and sold from the deli counter at Lady York Foods from December 2, 2014 to February 24, 2015. Consumers who are unsure if they have purchased an affected product are advised to contact the retailer.
Brand Name
Common Name
Code(s) on Product
None
Sliced Mortadella
All PACKED ON dates from 2014.DEC.02 to 2015.FEB.24

Check to see if you have recalled products in your home. Recalled products should be thrown out or returned to the store where they were purchased.

Food contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes may not look or smell spoiled but can still make you sick. Symptoms can include vomiting, nausea, persistent fever, muscle aches, severe headache and neck stiffness. Pregnant women, the elderly and people with weakened immune systems are particularly at risk. Although infected pregnant women may experience only mild, flu-like symptoms, the infection can lead to premature delivery, infection of the newborn or even stillbirth. In severe cases of illness, people may die.

Friday, February 27, 2015

Monticello brand Mortadella is being recalled due to listeria contamination

Ontario Ltd. is recalling Monticello brand Mortadella, product of Italy, from the marketplace due to possible Listeria monocytogenes contamination. Consumers should not consume and retailers, restaurants and institutions should not to sell or use the recalled product described below.
Starting on November 13, 2014, this product was sold clerk-served from deli counters with or without a label or coding, and some product packages may not bear the same brand or product name as described above, or a brand at all. Consumers who are unsure if they have purchased the affected product are advised to contact their retailer.
Recalled products
Brand Name
Common Name
Code(s) on Product
Monticello
La Mortadella del Cuore – Mortadella
LOT: 044293
BEST BEFORE: 03/19/2015
Check to see if you have recalled products in your home. Recalled products should be thrown out or returned to the store where they were purchased.
Food contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes may not look or smell spoiled but can still make you sick. Symptoms can include vomiting, nausea, persistent fever, muscle aches, severe headache and neck stiffness. Pregnant women, the elderly and people with weakened immune systems are particularly at risk. Although infected pregnant women may experience only mild, flu-like symptoms, the infection can lead to premature delivery, infection of the newborn or even stillbirth. In severe cases of illness, people may die.

Childrens Health News:Concussion prevention in youth sports ♦ Teen girls from rural areas have undiagnosed asthma and be depressed ♦ Do genes play a role in peanut allergies?

Better concussion prevention in youth sports needed With mandated provisions in youth sports concussion laws high among Rhode Island Interscholastic League high schools, compliance with recommended concussion protocols was very limited, researchers have found. The study suggests that more concussion related standards should be written into law in order to raise compliance Continue Reading
Teen girls from rural areas have more undiagnosed asthma and be depressed  Teen girls who live in rural areas are more likely than their male counterparts to have undiagnosed asthma, and they often are at a higher risk of depression, "There's a lot of speculation about why females are more likely to be undiagnosed," says the lead researcher. "Maybe it's because boys are more likely to get a sports physical for athletics and they catch it then. Or maybe it's because girls attribute asthma symptoms to something else, like anxiety "Continue Reading
Unique emotion recognition treatment leads to improvement in children with high-functioning autism  A unique emotion recognition treatment has been found highly effective for children with high-functioning autism. Children in the treatment group demonstrated significantly improved emotion-recognition skills and lower parent ratings of autism symptoms.Continue Reading
Do genes play a role in peanut allergies? Researchers have pinpointed a region in the human genome associated with peanut allergy in U.S. children, offering strong evidence that genes can play a role in the development of food allergies.Continue Reading

When it comes to the digital playground we need to stop crying wolf  Kids are leading the transition to digital media today. But, while too much time online could cause developmental problems, media consumption habits may not be making our children less bright or sociable, after all. Continue Reading

2/27/15 Health News: Water fluoridation linked to underactive thyroid ♦ GM food rules to take effect early ♦ Treatment for drug-resistant tuberculosis ♦ HIV drug beat strep throat

GM food rules to take effect 6 months early Originally slated to be implemented on Jan. 1, 2016, the law states that manufacturers should clearly label all food products, additives and loosely packaged products containing genetically modified ingredients. The print on the labels must be over 5 millimeters, and processed foods including soy oil must list any genetically modified ingredients Continue Reading
Potential treatment for drug-resistant tuberculosis discovered  A new small molecule drug has been discovered that may serve as a treatment against multidrug resistant tuberculosis, a form of the disease that cannot be cured with conventional therapies. While standard anti-tuberculosis drugs can cure most people of Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection, improper use of antibiotics has led to new strains of the bacterium resistant to the two most powerful medications, isoniazid and rifampicin. Continue Reading
New research provides first glimpse of weight gain guidance for pregnant women with obesity  New research provides the first glimpse of weight-gain guidance for pregnant women with various classes of obesity based on body mass index and suggests that they not gain any weight until mid-pregnancy or later Continue Reading
Water fluoridation in England linked to higher rates of underactive thyroid Water fluoridation above a certain level is linked to 30 percent higher than expected rates of underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) in England. Researchers point out that their findings echo those of previous research,. Continue Reading

Could an HIV drug beat strep throat, flesh-eating bacteria? With antibiotic resistance on the rise, scientists are looking for innovative ways to combat bacterial infections. The pathogen that causes conditions from strep throat to flesh-eating disease is among them, but scientists have now found a tool that could help them fight it: a drug approved to treat HIV. Their work could someday lead to new treatments Continue Reading

Senior Health News: Can virtual reality help treat anxiety in older people? ♦ Statins may not lower Parkinson's risk,♦ kin test may shed new light on Alzheimer

Can virtual reality help treat anxiety in older people?  Up to 25% of people aged 65 and over experience varying degrees of anxiety. Although cognitive behavioral therapy is a preferred treatment approach, it has limitations as people age (decreased mobility and visualization skills). Could virtual reality be an effective therapy for anxiety in older people? Continue Reading
Statins may not lower Parkinson's risk, experts say  The use of statins may not be associated with lowering risk for Parkinson's disease, according to a new study. The findings cast doubts on reports suggesting that the cholesterol-lowering medications may protect against this neurodegenerative brain disorder. Continue Reading
Independent home living or healthcare facility? Web tool to speed data collection By 2030, one in five Americans will be age 65 or older. To understand the role neighborhoods play in seniors' ability to 'age in place' -- living safely and independently in one's home of choice rather than in a healthcare facility -- researchers created a web application that speeds up researchers' data collection. Continue Reading

Skin test may shed new light on Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases  Scientists have discovered a skin test that may shed new light on Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases. The study showed that skin biopsies can be used to detect elevated levels of abnormal proteins found in the two diseases.Continue Reading

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Canada: Amira brand Tahiti Sauce Recalled Due to Salmonella

Amira Enterprises Inc. is recalling Amira brand Tahini Sauce from the marketplace due to possible Salmonella contamination. Consumers should not consume the recalled product described below.
Brand Name
Common Name
Size
UPC
Amira
Tahini Sauce
750 g
0 69467 40101 0
Check to see if you have recalled products in your home. Recalled products should be thrown out or returned to the store where they were purchased.
Food contaminated with Salmonella may not look or smell spoiled but can still make you sick. Young children, pregnant women, the elderly and people with weakened immune systems may contract serious and sometimes deadly infections. Healthy people may experience short-term symptoms such as fever, headache, vomiting, nausea, abdominal cramps and diarrhea. Long-term complications may include severe arthritis.

Childrens Health :Hand Washing Your Dishes Better For Kids' Health ♦ Baby formula poses higher arsenic ♦ Breastfeeding, shape immune system early in life

Hand Washing Your Dishes Could Be Better For Kids' Health   Doing dishes the old-fashioned way -- by hand -- might help curb a modern-day problem: Rising rates of childhood allergies, a new study suggests.Researchers in Sweden found that children living in families that hand-washed their dishes were about 40 percent less likely to develop allergies compared with kids in homes that used a dishwasher Continue Reading
Baby formula poses higher arsenic risk to newborns than breast milk  In the first US study of urinary arsenic in babies, researchers found that formula-fed infants had higher arsenic levels than breast-fed infants, and that breast milk itself contained very low arsenic concentrations Continue Reading
Experimenting preteens may have different brain processes   Preteens who experiment or explore new things may have brain processes that work differently than those of preteens who do not, according to a new study. Continue Reading
Teens from single-parent families leave school earlier   Individuals who live in single-parent families as teens received fewer years of schooling and are less likely to attain a bachelor's degree than those from two-parent families, a study concludes. Continue Reading
Breastfeeding, other factors help shape immune system early in life Researchers say that breastfeeding and other factors influence a baby's immune system development and susceptibility to allergies and asthma by what's in their gut.Continue Reading

2/26/15 Health News: Salmonella Outbreak Grows to 59 Cases ♦ E. coli Vaccine Effective ♦ 120 treated after meningitis death ♦ Treatment for drug-resistant tuberculosis discovered

TEXAS SALMONELLA OUTBREAK GROWS TO 59 CASES   At least 59 people have been found ill in a Salmonella outbreak connected in part to the Ten in Texas steakhouse in Dalhart, TX. One of the restaurant’s customers who was sickened, Frances Childers, is filing a lawsuit against the restaurant. Her attorneys say that she suffered from kidney failure alongside abdominal pains, nausea and muscle aches. Childers Continue Reading
STUDY: E. COLI VACCINES ARE EFFECTIVE BUT ECONOMIC INCENTIVE NEEDED Despite the proven effectiveness of vaccines designed to decrease the presence of E. coli bacteria in cattle by as much as 98 percent, beef producers are not likely to widely adopt the practice of vaccinating their herds until there is a clear economic incentive,Continue Reading
120 treated after meningitis death in Brevard jail. The Florida Department of Health in Brevard County confirmed the week of February 16 that a teenager died from meningitis at the Brevard Regional Juvenile Detention Center in Cocoa prompting health officials to treat 120 potentially exposed children and staff for the disease February 21. Continue Reading
Tissue engineering: Scientists grow leg muscle from cells in a dish  Scientists have generated mature, functional skeletal muscles in mice using a new approach for tissue engineering. The scientists grew a leg muscle starting from engineered cells cultured in a dish to produce a graft. The subsequent graft was implanted close to a normal, contracting skeletal muscle where the new muscle was nurtured and grown  Continue Reading

Potential treatment for drug-resistant tuberculosis discovered  A new small molecule drug has been discovered that may serve as a treatment against multidrug resistant tuberculosis, a form of the disease that cannot be cured with conventional therapies. While standard anti-tuberculosis drugs can cure most people of Mycobacterium tuberculosis infection, improper use of antibiotics has led to new strains of the bacterium resistant to the two most powerful medications, isoniazid and rifampicin. Continue Reading








Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Canada: Blue Menu Bran Flakes Cereal,Recalled

Loblaw Companies Limited is voluntarily recalling PC Blue Menu brand Bran Flakes Cereal from the marketplace due to possible plastic contamination. Consumers should not consume the recalled product described below.
Recalled products
Brand Name
Common Name
Size
Code(s) on Product
UPC
PC Blue Menu
Bran Flakes Cereal
775 g
Best before dates 2015 AU 26 up to and including 2016 JA 07
0 60383 74782 4
Check to see if you have recalled products in your home. Recalled products should be thrown out or returned to the store where they were purchased.

Canada: Sliced Mortadella Recalled due to listeria Contamination

Lady York Foods is recalling sliced Mortadella, product of Italy, sold on February 11, 2015 from the marketplace due to possible Listeria monocytogenes contamination. Consumers should not consume the recalled products described below.
This recall applies to Italian Mortadella products sliced and sold from the deli counter at Lady York Foods on February 11, 2015. Consumers who are unsure if they have purchased the affected products are advised to contact the retailer.
Brand Name
Common Name
Code(s) on Product
None
Ferrarini Mortadella – Prod. of Italy
PACKED ON 2015.FEB.11
None
Mortadella Regular – Prod. of Italy
PACKED ON 2015.FEB.11

Check to see if you have recalled products in your home. Recalled products should be thrown out or returned to the store where they were purchased.
Food contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes may not look or smell spoiled but can still make you sick. Symptoms can include vomiting, nausea, persistent fever, muscle aches, severe headache and neck stiffness. Pregnant women, the elderly and people with weakened immune systems are particularly at risk. Although infected pregnant women may experience only mild, flu-like symptoms, the infection can lead to premature delivery, infection of the newborn or even stillbirth. In severe cases of illness, people may die.
This recall was triggered by findings of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), Toronto Public Health, Public Health Ontario and other public health and food safety partners as part of an ongoing food borne illness outbreak investigation in Ontario. TheCFIA continues to conduct a food safety investigation, which may lead to the recall of other products.
There have been no confirmed illnesses associated with the consumption of these products sold on February 11, 2015. The recalled products are undergoing analysis to determine if they are linked to any illnesses.
More information
Lady York Foods: Deanne Carno, 416-781-8585, deanne@ladyyorkfoods.com
For more information, consumers and industry can contact the CFIA by filling out the online feedback form.
  • Ferrarini Mortadella – Prod. of Italy
  • Mortadella Regular – Prod. of Italy

New CDC Study and Blog: National Burden of Clostridium difficile Infections 
Clostridium difficile (C. difficile), a germ that causes major colon inflammation and deadly diarrhea, caused almost half a million infections in the United States in a single year, according to a study released today by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).  Approximately 29,000 patients with a C. difficile infection died within 30 days of initial diagnosis from illnesses such as sepsis. Of those, about 15,000 deaths were estimated to be directly attributable to C. difficile infections. 
C. difficile infections cause immense suffering and death for thousands of Americans each year,” said CDC Director Tom Frieden, M.D., M.P.H.  “These infections can be prevented by improving antibiotic prescribing and by improving infection control in the health care system. CDC hopes to ramp up prevention of this deadly infection by supporting State Antibiotic Resistance PreventionPrograms in all 50 states.”
More details about the study, including effect on certain age groups, are available at http://www.cdc.gov/media/dpk/2015/dpk-deadly-diarrhea.html. Prevention progress of C. difficile in hospitals by state and hospital were previously published and can be found at http://www.cdc.gov/hai/progress-report/index.html and http://www.medicare.gov/hospitalcompare, respectively.

C. diff survivor and advocate shares her story

Nancy Caralla
Nancy Caralla
Guest Author: Nancy C Caralla
Founding Executive Director,
President of the C Diff Foundation.
My name is Nancy Caralla, and I know all too much about Clostridium difficile (C. diff).  I am a nurse and contracted C. diff while caring for patients suffering from this horrible infection. Now, I am a C. diff survivor. Tragically, our family lost my father from C. diff, too. I know how fighting a C. diff infection can be exhausting on so many levels. It is a physically, mentally, and financially debilitating infection. It has the ability to steal away a loved one, tear away dreams, create added stress on families, diminish financial nest eggs, eliminate employment opportunities, build geographic mobility limitations, and create tears in even the strongest individuals. All aspects of one’s being are involved in fighting a C. diff infection. This is why I have dedicated myself to “Raising C. diff Awareness” worldwide.
The C diff Foundation was brought to fruition in 2012 with a mission to provide education and advocate for C. diff infection prevention, treatment, and environmental safety worldwide. It provides Antibiotic News, Nutrition Support, Government and private Scientific Research and Development Studies, and a CDF Volunteer program. The C diff Foundation hosts a 24-hour hotline to support patients, families, and health care providers through the difficulties of a C. diff infection (1-844-FOR-CDIF).
Our hotline now gets 20-30 calls a day from individuals impacted by this germ. These are some of the most common questions we get asked:
How do antibiotics cause C. diff?
The antibiotics cause a disruption in the normal intestinal flora which leads to an overgrowth of Clostridium difficile bacteria in the colon. In November 2012, CDC shared a public announcement regarding antibiotic use: colds and many ear and sinus infections are caused by viruses, not bacteria. Taking antibiotics to treat a “virus” can make those drugs less-effective when you and your family really need them. Limiting the usage of antibiotics will also help limit new cases of C. diff infections. Always discuss the symptoms and medications with the treating physician. Get smart about antibiotics by looking at CDC’s materials online.
What can we do to stop C. diff?
We can all fight acquiring a C. diff infection beginning with prevention, and C. diff is a preventable infection.
Hand-washing (aka hand-hygiene) practiced and repeated frequently with correct technique aids removes harmful germs, provides patient safety, and adheres to infection control policies.
Environmental safety: Utilizing EPA registered products with “C. diff kill” claim will aid in eradicating Clostridium difficile Gram-positive, anaerobic spores, found to be capable of surviving outside of the body for long periods of time.
As a healthcare professional, how do I protect myself from C. diff?
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE): During the care of a patient diagnosed with a C. diff infection, following infection-control policies, healthcare and environmental service professionals are to wear PPE to minimize exposure to serious workplace illnesses (acute care, long-term care, and home care environments). PPE may include items such as gloves, shoe coverings, and gowns.
Communication:  Contacting and alerting other healthcare facilities, prior to transferring a patient, to report an active C. diff infection to implement and follow contact precautions and isolation policies.
C. diff Foundation
We can all fight acquiring a C. diff infection. C. diff is preventable, and together we can stop its spread.
For more information please visit the Foundation’s website:www.cdifffoundation.org.