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Conditions & Concerns

  Health News >   Special Reports >   ACSH Features > 
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American Council on Science and Health

Red Meat Can Come Off the Forbidden List
For years, self-styled dietary "experts" have urged Americans to avoid red meat for fear that eating it would raise their blood cholesterol levels and so increase their risk of heart disease. New research suggests, however, that such dietary proscriptions are outdated -- and unnecessary.

Acupuncture Perspectives: Part 3
When traditional Chinese acupuncture originated, an understanding of biochemistry, physiology, and bodily healing mechanisms did not exist. Interior surgical procedures on humans were long taboo in China, and it was not until the 18th century that an understanding emerged that knowledge of function has little use without knowledge of structure.

Acupuncture Perspectives: Part 2
Certain metaphysical constructs form the structure of traditional Chinese acupuncture, and its variations distinguish such methods from forms of acupuncture that are science-oriented. 

Acupuncture Perspectives
It is said that acupuncture has become a standard of care in America. It's something patients expect their physicians to be able to provide or refer to. Find out the history of acupuncture, and evidence from acupuncture research on humans and animals.

Start Routine Mammograms at Age 50, Not Age 40
The American Medical Association has recommended that all American women start having regular mammograms for breast-cancer detection at age 40. Is there good reason to recommend this routine breast-cancer screening for all women at such a relatively early age? Will this recommendation save lives?

Exploring the Alar Incident
The following is an ACSH interview with Robert Bidinotto, author of "The Great Apple Scare".

Will '60 Minutes' Admit Decade-Old Alar Story Was a Hoax?
More than 10 years ago -- February 26, 1989 -- the CBS newsmagazine "60 Minutes" terrified a nation by claiming that apples treated with an agricultural chemical called alar were putting America’s children at risk of cancer.

A Breakthrough in Patient Education
Prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in American men. That is why a newly released handbook is an extraordinarily useful contribution to patient education.

Evidence Mounts for Effects of Trans Fatty Acids on Blood Lipids: Significance Not Clear
There has not been a consensus on the effect another type of fatty acid -- trans fatty acids, or TFAs -- has on blood lipid levels. Now, in its June 24, 1999, issue, The New England Journal of Medicine has published a report on the results of a study supporting the view that trans fatty acids are detrimental to health.

Whiter Than White?
If our beauty standards are set movie stars and supermodels, teeth should be straight, big and ultra-white. Dentists have responded with an explosion of new procedures and marketing plans. Find out about the latest treatments in keeping the teeth whiter than white.

Is It Time to Look for Another Dentist?
During the past 25 years, dentistry in America has seen numerous changes in technology, treatment techniques, marketing and traditions of practice. Long gone are the days when choosing a dentist and a treatment was simple. Today's consumer seeking the best dental deal is faced with a bewildering profusion of options.

'Reassuring' Study Shows Deaths from Childhood Cancer Declining
In a study that one public health expert has called "marvelously reassuring," a group of researchers from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) has reported that death rates from all major types of childhood cancers declined steadily in the years between 1975 and 1995.

Antioxidants Disappoint as Reducers of Stroke Risk
Antioxidants have been touted as reducers of the risk of various cancers, of heart disease and of other vascular problems. However, a new study has cast some doubt on the health-promoting effects of some of these nutrients, at least with respect to their ability to lower the risk of stroke in men.

Why Belgium Waffles About the Safety of Coke
Last week, in a metastatic manifestation of food-phobia, the Belgium government banned indefinitely the sale of all Coca Cola beverages because of what the Associated Press characterized as "poisoning across the country." Clearly the Coke "scare" is not just a coincidence -- but a direct consequence of Belgium's current phobic mentality.

Panel: Plastics' Chemicals Not Harmful
A panel of experts, brought together by the American Council on Science and Health and Dr. Koop, has concluded that certain chemicals that are added to plastics for flexibility are not harmful to your health.

Stop Smoking, Not Eating
Smokers who quit smoking typically gain a modest amount of weight. This weight gain seems to deter many women from attempting to quit, even though the health benefits of smoking cessation far outweigh any negative health effects of weight gain. 

The 1989 Alar Scare
The current Coke scare in Belgium brings to mind other food scares that have happened in the past 40 years. In 1989, a scare about an apple pestice ran wild. When the dust had cleared, apple growers lost an estimated $250 million, and apple processors lost another $125 million.

The 'Cranberry Scare' of 1959
The current Coke scare in Belgium brings to mind other food scares that have happened in the past 40 years -- starting with a scare in 1959 that paved the way for food scares to come. The public was taught to fear trace amounts of chemicals regardless of the actual human health risk.

Cocaine and Sudden Heart Attacks
A researcher reported this month even more bad news about cocaine's effect on the heart. The news is particularly important given that recent estimates indicate that some 30 million Americans have experimented at least once with cocaine -- and an estimated 5 million are currently regular users. 

'Food Police' on Wrong Track
Over and over, the "food police" exhort us to keep so-called junk food away from children in order to steer them toward healthy dietary habits. Recent research findings, however, suggest that attempts at policing youngsters' food choices may boomerang.

Y2K May Ring in Golden Age for Breast Cancer Care
Two new studies touting the breast-cancer preventive benefits of the "selective estrogen receptor modulator" (SERM) drugs may mark the beginning of in a new era in breast cancer care.

Don't Hold the Mayo!
Many people are uneasy about eating chicken salad, potato salad and similar dishes at summer picnics because they have heard that these foods -- which are made with mayonnaise -- are likelier than other foods to cause food poisoning. But the scientific reality is that the mayo is generally not to blame.

Smoking Risks
Some smokers are unconcerned about chronic illnesses -- such as heart and lung disease conditions -- but the British Medical Association is betting that smokers will take notice of another tobacco-related condition: male sexual impotence.

Does Estrogen Increase Risk of Breast Cancer?
A new study shows that while the use of hormones is associated with a slightly increased risk of breast cancer with a favorable outcome, the use of postmenopausal hormone replacement therapy was not linked to an increased risk of the more commonly diagnosed, dangerous breast cancers.

Are Belgian Waffles Safe?
When it comes to food scares, a rumor can be halfway ’round the world before the truth gets its boots on. Find out what you should you do the next time you hear there are "poisons" in your food.

Breast Cancer and Alternative Therapies
A recent study -- showing that breast cancer patients who use herbs, acupuncture or other alternative therapies along with their standard treatment may be more likely to be depressed -- shines a spotlight on such patients' unmet needs.

Scrutinizing Arthritis Books
Arthritis is frustrating for both patients and their physicians. But what is it about arthritis that, more than any other chronic condition, brings the unorthodox out of the woodwork? 

Claims About the 'Breast Cancer Prevention Diet'
The idea that you can prevent breast cancer by eating certain food is a common claim. The experts at ACSH address some of the misleading claims of the book "The Breast Cancer Prevention Diet: The Powerful Foods, Supplements, and Drugs That Can Save Your Life." 

Cholesterol-Lowering Margarine
Who should be using the new "cholesterol-lowering" margerines Benecol and Take Control? Find out before you buy that $5 tub.

Experts Praise Fiber Study
Women who consume high amounts of fiber in their diets may be at lower risk for heart disease, according to a new study. Experts from the American Council on Science and Health laud the new study for emphasizing the role of fiber in a balanced diet and for calling attention to heart disease in women.

The 'War' Against Cigarettes
What are public health officials preparing to do in the war against tobacco now that a major cigarette company admits that smoking is hazardous to your health?

Environmental Toxin Conference
A purported link between childhood exposure to environmental chemicals and the development of attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) has recently been the subject of new stories. But experts say the focus on invisible toxins diverts the public's attention from some of the real -- and highly-visible -- threats to children's health.

This information is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consulting with a qualified healthcare provider. Please consult your healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your condition.

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