Calls for parliamentary inquiry into statins

Following the submission of a letter signed by an international group of eminent doctors, Sir Norman Lamb MP, Chair of the British Parliamentary Science and Technology Committee, has called for a full parliamentary investigation and the release of hitherto hidden raw clinical data on statins. Writing in the European Scientist, the letter’s lead author Dr Aseem Malhotra, exposes what can only be described as a total cover-up of the debilitating side-effects of statins. Dr Malhotra underlines yet again how the lure of big bucks is responsible for corrupting science and scientists, because it’s been known for so long now that LDL cholesterol is not the bad guy when it comes to heart disease.

Replacing toxic pesticides naturally

The NEUROSTRESSPEP project seeks to find new and ‘greener’ ways of controlling insect pests to replace highly toxic conventional pesticides. By creating chemicals similar to insects’ natural hormones, they can now develop ‘green’ pesticides. The resulting biopesticides will be used to selectively target and control certain insects whilst protecting essential pollinators, such as bees along with the surrounding environment. Researchers are now at a point where they can start to test products in the real world to assess their efficacy and impact on the surrounding environment.

Deaths from cardiometabolic disease on the increase

A new research letter published in JAMA Network highlights the reversal in cardiometabolic disease in the US. Death rates had decreased up until 2010 after which rates started levelling off and rising. The obesity epidemic and its downstream consequences have been blamed for the increase in cardiometabolic disease rates. The news mirrors recent research from the University of Melbourne showing a worldwide increase in rates of CVD deaths, many of which are largely preventable by simple diet and lifestyle modification.

UK takeaway market explodes

According to research figures published by the British Takeaway Campaign, the UK takeaway food sector has doubled in size in the last three years, with Brits spending £12.5 billion on takeaway food in 2018. The report also highlighted the surge in vegan meals with a 388% growth as media messages to reduce meat intake to combat climate change start to take hold. The report is a sad reflection of the current instant gratification age, as well as the loss of culinary skills and knowledge about food in the UK. Takeaway food fuels the degradation of the food supply in order to keep costs down in a very price competitive market, which in turn is a major factor in the ever-worsening obesity epidemic. The serious risk to health caused by junk food diets has been highlighted by a recent case study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine where a Bristol-based teenage boy has lost his hearing and sight due to a severe lack of vitamins and minerals. He was considered a ‘fussy eater’ and lived on a diet of potato chips, crisps, white bread, processed ham and sausages because he didn’t like the texture of other foods.

UK tops list of ‘healthiest’ processed food!

The dubious honour of the world’s ‘healthiest’ processed food and drink has gone to the UK, with the US and Australia in 2nd and 3rd place. This global survey by the George Institute for Global Health is yet another stark warning of how the basic skills of cooking and food knowledge are being lost to the developed world. India, China and Chile were rated amongst the worst because they still largely maintain a culture of homemade food eaten at home. The domination of ultra-processed foods in the world’s food supply is directly related to the concurrent rise in chronic disease.

Probiotic use could reduce sick days

A new study published in Frontiers in Pharmacology by an international collaboration, found over two million courses of antibiotics could be avoided if the US population regularly used probiotics. Generalised probiotic intake could save up to US $1.4 billion by reducing the number of sick days people take along with the prevention of associated losses in productivity. Encouraging such simple, cheap, proactive action, along with the right education, will help citizens to regain some control over their health outcomes and in turn reduce the burden on crumbling healthcare systems.

Original 2012 Australian homeopathy report released

Published in 2015, the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) information paper, ‘Evidence on the effectiveness of homeopathy for treating health conditions’, concluded there was no reliable evidence for the efficacy of homeopathy. This triggered renewed global attacks on the use of homeopathy culminating in the UK’s NHS blacklisting such treatments and withdrawing funding. It later transpired that the MHRC had rejected the report in 2012 despite it concluding that there is, “encouraging evidence for the effectiveness of homeopathy” in five medical conditions. In a win for homeopathic organisations, the 2012 report has now been released following extensive campaigning. Clarifying the findings of the 2015 Homeopathy Reviews, NHMRC CEO Prof Anne Kelso stated that, “contrary to some claims, the review did not conclude that homeopathy was ineffective”, vindicating the continued real-world results showing homeopathy’s continued popularity because it works for so many people.