Magnesium and metabolic syndrome, UK ‘smart’ meters rollout and universal supplementation for UK kids
Magnesium and metabolic syndrome
After assessing the effects of magnesium supplementation among 234 people with metabolic syndrome (MetS), a new study concludes: “Dietary magnesium intake is inadequate among non-diabetic individuals with MetS and suggest that increasing dietary magnesium to meet the RDA [recommended daily allowance] has a protective effect on insulin resistance.”
This recommendation is a far cry from the paltry 10 health claims for the ‘master mineral’, which is indispensable for reducing heart disease risk. The evidence shows that dietary and supplemental intakes for magnesium for most people are consistently below the 375 mg/day RDA, and that higher magnesium intakes are even more beneficial. As such, it is crucial that the public prioritises magnesium intake from the diet and supplements in order to curb the chronic disease burden linked to metabolic syndrome, diabetes and heart disease.
Which? takes smart position on ‘smart’ meters
We’ve had our differences with UK consumer magazine Which?in the past. Not this time! In an open letter to UK Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne, Which? described ‘smart’ meters as “A £12 bn luxury we cannot currently afford,” while urging Osborne to halt the rollout for 2 years and cap costs. The true situation is even worse. As Stop Smart Meters! UK points out, consumer installation of a ‘smart’ meter costs around 17 times the estimated annual savings – “Assuming, of course, that the savings will actually be passed back to you by these companies”. We applaud the Which? initiative, despite our disappointment that its open letter failed to mention the health or privacy risks inherent in ‘smart’ meters.
UK Chief Medical Officer backs supplements for kids
In her 2012 Annual Report, entitled Our Children Deserve Better: Prevention Pays, UK Chief Medical Officer Dame Sally Davies calls for an investigation to “examine the cost-effectiveness of the Healthy Start vitamin programme becoming universal.” Dame Sally has declared herself “profoundly ashamed” at the state of child health in the UK. It’s certainly a sign of the times when the national diet of a rich, industrialised country like the UK is so inadequate that universal supplementation may be required to ensure healthy children. Also, it’s a safe bet that the vitamins used will be synthetic, petrochemical-derived, isolated forms manufactured by pharma, as opposed to natural-source. But at least here's a positive signal from a government in Europe that the health benefits of food supplements may have a significant role to play in improving health outcomes.
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