Health Media ArticlesExcerpts of Key Health Media Articles in Major Media
Note: Explore our full index to revealing excerpts of key major media news articles on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.
Up to 20 million people in Bangladesh are at risk of suffering early deaths because of arsenic poisoning – the legacy of a well-intentioned but ill-planned water project that created a devastating public health catastrophe. Four decades after an internationally funded move to dig tube wells across the country massively backfired, huge numbers of people still remain at higher risk of contracting cancer and heart disease. The move, spearheaded by the UN and the World Bank, was fatally flawed. Although checks were carried out for certain contaminants in the newly sourced water, it was not tested for arsenic, which occurs naturally in the Ganges and Brahmaputra deltas. By the early 1990s, when it was found that up to half of 10 million tube wells were contaminated with arsenic, Bangladesh was confronting a huge problem. The World Health Organisation called it "the largest mass poisoning of a population in history. The scale of the environmental disaster is greater than any seen before; it is beyond the accidents in Bhopal, India, in 1984, and Chernobyl, Ukraine, in 1986". Some subsequent studies predicted that, ultimately, one person in 10 who drinks water from the arsenical wells would go on to die from lung, bladder or skin cancer. Even though some of these conditions take decades to develop, by 2004, about 3,000 people a year were dying from arsenic-related cancers.
Note: What do you think might have occurred had the same thing happened in the US or Europe?
A vegetarian diet may help to protect against cancer, a UK study suggests. Analysis of data from 52,700 men and women shows that those who did not eat meat had significantly fewer cancers overall than those who did. Writing in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition the team said the findings were worth looking into. Although it is widely recommended that people eat five portions of fruit and vegetables a day to reduce their risk of cancer and other diseases, there is very little evidence looking specifically at a vegetarian diet. In the latest study, researchers looked at men and women aged 20 to 89 recruited in the UK in the 1990s. They divided participants into meat-eaters, fish-eaters, vegetarians and vegans. During follow-up there were fewer cancers than would be expected in the general population - probably because they were a healthier than average group of people. But there was a significantly lower incidence of all cancers among the fish-eaters and vegetarians compared with the meat eaters. For colorectal cancer, however that trend was reversed with vegetarians having a significantly higher incidence of the condition than the other groups.
Note: For many promising reports from major media sources on potential cancer cures, click here.
A former Pfizer scientist is suing the pharmaceuticals giant after alleging she contracted an artificial, HIV-like, virus created by a colleague. In her lawsuit, Becky McClain claims Pfizer unlawfully dismissed her while she suffered bouts of paralysis brought on by the man-made virus. Pfizer denies these accusations, and says McClain simply didn't come to work, and only linked her problems to engineered-disease exposure after she was fired. According to McClain, researchers in her lab genetically engineered an artificial lentivirus, a class of viruses that also includes HIV. McClain believes that she became infected by the virus due to faulty safety measures, resulting in complete body paralysis as often as 12 times every month. Most likely, we will never know if it is Pfizer's virus that caused McClain's health problems. The court case will focus mostly on safety procedures in the laboratory, not on what exactly from the lab caused the illness. Also, Pfizer refuses to release the genome of the suspected virus, preventing both identification of the disease, as well as the development of a possible cure.
Note: Isn't it interesting that Pfizer is involved in creating HIV-like viruses? How long has this been going on?
The risk of children suffering from flu can be halved if they take vitamin D, doctors in Japan have found. The finding has implications for flu epidemics since vitamin D, which is naturally produced by the human body when exposed to direct sunlight, has no significant side effects, costs little and can be several times more effective than anti-viral drugs or vaccine. Only one in ten children, aged six to 15 years, taking the sunshine vitamin in a clinical trial came down with flu compared with one in five given a dummy tablet. Mitsuyoshi Urashima, the Japanese doctor who led the trial, told The Times that vitamin D was more effective than vaccines in preventing flu. Vitamin D was found to be even more effective when the comparison left out children who were already given extra vitamin D by their parents, outside the trial. Taking the sunshine vitamin was then shown to reduce the risk of flu to a third of what it would otherwise be. The trial, which was double blind, randomised, and fully controlled scientifically, was conducted by doctors and scientists from Jikei University School of Medicine in Tokyo, Japan.
Note: For important articles from reliable sources on health issues, click here.
The FDA has "certified" a 2009 letter sent anonymously by FDA staff to President Obama describing "systemic corruption and wrongdoing that permeates all levels of FDA." The FDA's official recognition of the letter means that lawyers who want to use it to demonstrate that the FDA isn't perfect won't have to go through weeks of tedious discovery demands to find someone at the FDA who can officially say, "Yup, we sent that." That's going to be a headache for drug companies who often defend their drugs in court by saying, "Hey, the FDA said this product was fine and we did everything they asked -- so it's not fair to hold us responsible." Plaintiffs' lawyers can now hold up the letter in court and argue that drug companies have been on notice that the FDA is riddled with politics, conflicts of interest and outright corruption, and is, as the letter says, "fundamentally broken." Written by a group of scientists on FDA letter head -- but with their names blacked out for fear of retaliation -- the letter describes a nightmare of bungling and self-dealing among higher-ups at the drug safety agency. It begs Obama to step in and reform the shop: "... many other FDA managers who have failed to protect the American public, who have violated laws, rules, and regulations, who have suppressed or altered scientific or technological findings and conclusions, who have abused their power and authority, and who have engaged in illegal retaliation against those who speak out, have not been held accountable and remain in place."
Note: The FDA actively persecutes whistle-blowers, placed a former Monsanto lobbyist in a high ranking position, and gives industrial food companies preferential treatment over small farmers. In recent years, FDA executives have been caught participating in medical industry corruption, including keeping important prescription drug safety information hidden from consumers.
Brussels bureaucrats [are determined] to spread GM crops throughout Europe, against the will of most of its people. In a little-noticed move last week, the European Commission defied most of the governments to which it is supposed to answer to give the green light to growing a [genetically] modified potato across the continent. It was the first time a GM crop had been authorised for cultivation in 13 years. But, now the long moratorium has been broken, similar approvals for others are expected rapidly to follow. The decision has its origins in a couple of secret, top-level meetings called by Jose Manuel Barroso, the Commission's strongly pro-GM president. He invited the prime ministers of each of the 27 EU member states to send a personal representative along to discuss how to "speed up" the spread of the technology and "deal with" public opposition. About three times as many Europeans oppose genetic modification as support it. As a result, GM crops cover only about 0.12 per cent of Europe's agricultural land – and the continent accounts for just 0.08 per cent of the area growing them worldwide. And they have been losing ground. In the past two years, both France and Germany banned the Monsanto maize, joining Austria, Hungary, Greece and Luxembourg.
Note: Though Europeans are very aware of the threat of genetically modified foods and have worked hard to prohibit them, the media in the US have managed to stifle almost any reporting on the topic. Most Americans have no idea that they are regularly eating GM foods known to have serious health risks.
A Danish scientist who was a lead researcher in two studies that purport to show that mercury used in vaccines do not cause autism is believed to have used forged documents to steal $2 million from Aarhus University in Denmark. Dr. Poul Thorsen was also a research professor at Emory University from 2003 until June of 2009. Emory University officials gave no reason for Thorsen's departure. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention funded research conducted by Thorsen and his colleagues at Aarhus University. The CDC asked the researchers to conduct studies to determine whether thimerosal, a mercury-based preservative and adjuvant used in vaccines, played any role in causing autism. The results of the studies, that there was no link between vaccines containing mercury and autism, formed the foundation for the conclusions of several Institute of Medicine reports. In a statement Aarhus University officials said Thorsen forged documents supposedly from the CDC to obtain the release of $2 million from the university. Autism advocacy groups are demanding his studies be given a closer look. Those same groups have long claimed that the results of the studies were suspect.
Note: Very few mainstream media covered this intriguing story of a key researcher whose work is held up to deny any link between vaccines and autism. Yet Robert F. Kennedy Jr. published a very revealing article on this key topic, which you can read here.
You’ve accepted the idea that TV makes you dumber. And unless you’re working out to an exercise video, you know those hours sprawled out in front of the screen are going to make you fatter — not to mention the impact of all that junk food you’ve been tempted to scarf down during the commercial breaks. But you’ll be surprised to learn the host of other bad things TV can do to you. 1. TV makes you deader. TV-viewing is a pretty deadly pastime, research suggests. No matter how much time you spend in the gym, every hour you spend in front of the TV increases your risk of dying from heart disease, according to a recent report in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association. 2. TV may make you drink more. When it comes to drinking, we’re apparently very susceptible to what we see on TV, according to a report published in Alcohol and Alcoholism. 3. TV can make your kid pregnant. Teens who watched a lot of TV that included sexual content were twice as likely to get pregnant, according to a study published in Pediatrics. 4. TV weakens your bones. Hours spent watching TV can set a kid up for later problems with brittle bones, according to a study published in the Journal of Pediatrics. 5. TV makes you less engaging. A recent study found that when the TV is on — even if it’s just in the background — parents interact less with their kids. To learn more about TV’s effects, researchers brought 51 infants and toddlers, each accompanied by a parent, to a university child study center, according to the report published in Child Development.
Note: For lots more on important health issues from reliable sources, click here.
Per Segerbäck ... keeps limited human company, because human technology makes him physically ill. How ill? On a walk last summer, he ran into one of his few neighbors, a man who lives in a cottage about 100 yards away. During their chat, the man's cellphone rang, and Segerbäck, 54, was overcome by nausea. Within seconds, he was unconscious. Segerbäck suffers from electro-hypersensitivity (EHS), which means he has severe physical reactions to the electromagnetic radiation produced by common consumer technologies, such as computers, televisions and cellphones. Symptoms range from burning or tingling sensations on the skin to dizziness, nausea, headaches, sleep disturbance and memory loss. In extreme cases like Segerbäck's, breathing problems, heart palpitations and loss of consciousness can result. A cellphone has to be in use -- either making or receiving a call, or searching for a signal, when radiation levels are highest -- for it to have this kind of effect on Segerbäck. Sweden is the only country in the world to recognize EHS as a functional impairment, and Segerbäck's experience has been important in creating policy to address the condition. Swedish EHS sufferers -- about 3 percent of the population, or some 250,000 people, according to government statistics -- are entitled to similar rights and social services as those given to people who are blind or deaf. Today, local governments will pay to have the home of someone diagnosed with EHS electronically "sanitized," if necessary, through the installation of metal shielding.
Note: For deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources on health issues, click here.
Six years after the intense fighting began in the Iraqi town of Fallujah between US forces and Sunni insurgents, there is a disturbingly large number of cases of birth defects in the town. Fallujah is less than 40 miles (65km) from Baghdad, but it can still be dangerous to get to. As a result, there has been no authoritative medical investigation, certainly by any Western team, into the allegations that the weapons used by the Americans are still causing serious problems. The Iraqi government line is that there are only one or two extra cases of birth defects per year in Fallujah, compared with the national average. But in the ... Fallujah General Hospital ... we found a paediatric specialist, Dr Samira al-Ani, who told us that she saw two or three new cases every day. Most of them, she said, exhibited cardiac problems. The specialist, like other medical staff at the hospital, seemed nervous about talking too openly about the problem. But it is impossible, as a visitor, not to be struck by the terrible number of cases of birth defects there. We heard many times that officials in Fallujah had warned women that they should not have children. We went to a clinic for the disabled, and were given details of dozens upon dozens of cases of children with serious birth defects.
Note: There is strong evidence that the US military was experimenting with dangerous weapons like white phosphorus in Fallujah. For more on this, click here.
The introduction of a genetically modified potato in Europe risks the development of human diseases that fail to respond to antibiotics, it [has been claimed]. German chemical giant BASF this week won approval from the European Commission for commercial growing of a starchy potato with a gene that could resist antibiotics – useful in the fight against illnesses such as tuberculosis. Farms in Germany, Sweden, the Netherlands and the Czech Republic may plant the potato for industrial use, with part of the tuber fed to cattle, according to BASF, which fought a 13-year battle to win approval for Amflora. But other EU member states, including Italy and Austria and anti-GM campaigners angrily attacked the move, claiming it could result in a health disaster. During the regulatory tussle over the potato, the EU's pharmaceutical regulator had expressed concern about its potential to interfere with the efficacy of antibiotics on infections that develop multiple resistance to other antibiotics, a growing problem in human and veterinary medicine. Drug resistance is part of the explanation for the resurgence of TB, which infects eight million people worldwide every year.
Note: For an excellent summary of the threats to health from genetically-modified foods, click here.
An herbicide that contaminates the tap water consumed by millions of Americans has been found to produce gender-bending effects in male frogs, "chemically castrating" some and turning others into females, a study shows. Frogs in the experiment were exposed to amounts of the weedkiller atrazine that are comparable to the levels allowed in drinking water by the Environmental Protection Agency, says lead researcher Tyrone Hayes of the University of California-Berkeley. In Hayes' earlier studies, atrazine caused male frogs to begin growing eggs in their testes. In this experiment, 10% of the males exposed to atrazine — one of the most commonly used herbicide in the world — actually changed sex; some were able to breed and lay eggs. Nearly all of the other males had low testosterone and sperm levels, which made them unable to reproduce, Hayes says. The experiment [raises] new questions about the safety of atrazine, which other studies have linked to human birth defects, low birth weight, prematurity and low sperm count. About 75% of stream water samples and 40% of groundwater samples contain atrazine, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. The Natural Resources Defense Council, an environmental advocacy group, detected atrazine in 90% of tap water samples from 139 water systems. The European Union has banned the chemical.
Note: For many key reports from reliable sources on important health issues, click here.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation has issued a report that is supposed to clinch the case that a lone scientist mailed anthrax-laced letters in 2001, terrorizing a country already traumatized by the 9/11 attacks. The agency cites voluminous circumstantial evidence ... but its report leaves too many loose ends to be taken as a definitive verdict. The scientist — Dr. Bruce Ivins, an Army biodefense expert — killed himself in 2008 as the investigation moved ever closer to an indictment. That means the evidence and the F.B.I.’s conclusion that he was the culprit and acted alone will never be tested in court. Problematic is the investigative work that led the F.B.I. to conclude that only Dr. Ivins, among perhaps 100 scientists who had access to the same flask, could have sent the letters. The case has always been hobbled by a lack of direct evidence tying Dr. Ivins to the letters. No witnesses who saw him prepare the powdered anthrax or mail the letters. No anthrax spores in his house or car. No incriminating fingerprints, fibers or DNA. No confession to a colleague or in a suicide note, just opaque ramblings in e-mail that the F.B.I. interprets as evidence of guilt. The F.B.I. has a troubling history of building a circumstantial case against suspects who are later exonerated. We ... agree with Representative Rush Holt of New Jersey, who is calling for an independent assessment to validate the findings.
Note: For a recent Wall Street Journal report on the unsolved anthrax attacks, click here.
Doctors have known that low levels of vitamin D are linked to certain kinds of cancers as well as to diabetes and asthma, but new research also shows that the vitamin can kill human cancer cells. The results fall short of an immediate cancer cure, but they are encouraging, medical professionals say. JoEllen Welsh, a researcher with the State University of New York at Albany, has studied the effects of vitamin D for 25 years. Part of her research involves taking human breast cancer cells and treating them with a potent form of vitamin D. Within a few days, half the cancer cells shriveled up and died. Welsh said the vitamin has the same effect as a drug used for breast cancer treatment. "Vitamin D enters the cells and triggers the cell death process," she [said]. "It's similar to what we see when we treat cells with Tamoxifen," a drug used to treat breast cancer. The vitamin's effects were even more dramatic on breast cancer cells injected into mice. After several weeks of treatment, the cancer tumors in the mice shrank by an average of more than 50 percent. Some tumors disappeared. Similar results have been achieved on colon and prostate cancer tumors in mice.
Three years ago, at the age of 48, Camilla Rees had to leave her apartment in downtown San Francisco. Not because of the rent, she says, but because of the radiation. Her personal radiation meter -- yes, such things exist -- spiked after a lawyer couple moved in next door. Rees says she quickly lost her ability to think clearly. "I was unfocused, as if I had suddenly come down with ADHD. I would wake up dizzy in the morning. I'd collapse to the floor. I had to leave to escape that nightmare." Rees asked the neighbors if they had installed a new Wi-Fi router, and sure enough they had, on the wall near Rees' bed. Since then, Rees, a former investment banker, has been on a crusade against low-level electromagnetic fields, or EMFs, of all types, including the microwave radiation that flows from cellphones and cellphone towers. She co-wrote the 2009 book Public Health SOS: The Shadow Side of the Wireless Revolution, one of many recent books to warn against the dangers of EMFs, and founded the website electromagnetichealth.org.
Note: For many key reports from major media sources on health issues, click here.
More than 1,000 people in New Jersey and New York, many of them adolescent Orthodox Jews, have been sickened with mumps since August, health authorities said Monday. Almost all of those infected with the virus are of the Orthodox or Hasidic Jewish population, and their average age is 14. The mumps outbreak began at a summer camp for Orthodox Jewish boys in Sullivan County, New York, according to the CDC. Health officials have linked the outbreak to an 11-year-old boy at the camp. He had recently returned from the United Kingdom, where a mumps outbreak had spread to 4,000 people. Rabbi Yehunda Pirutinsky was surprised when his 14-year-old son was diagnosed with mumps a week ago. "He was completely vaccinated," Pirutinsky said. "So it was a surprise to us he came down with mumps." Of the New Jersey cases, 77 percent were vaccinated, Terjesen said. But the vaccine is not 100 percent effective, according to the CDC. At two doses, the vaccine is 76 to 95 percent effective, the CDC says on its Web site.
Note: 77 percent of the over 1,000 who came down with mumps had been vaccinated against the disease, yet the CDC claims it is 76 to 95 percent effective. Hmmmm... For many reports from reliable sources that highlight serious problems with vaccines, click here.
Drug companies manipulated the World Health Organisation into downgrading its definition of a pandemic so they could cash in on a swine flu outbreak, it is claimed. An inquiry heard yesterday that the WHO allegedly softened its criteria for declaring a H1N1 flu pandemic last spring - just weeks before announcing there was a worldwide outbreak. Critics said the decision was driven by pharmaceutical companies desperate to recoup the billions of pounds they had invested in researching and developing pandemic vaccines after the bird flu scares in 2006 and 2007. As a result, millions of people have been vaccinated against a mild illness, and money that could have been used to prevent and treat major killers such as heart disease has been squandered. The claims, which emerged during the first of several Council of Europe hearings into the handling of the swine flu pandemic, were strongly rejected by the WHO. Following the organisation's declaration of a pandemic, the Department of Health warned of 65,000 deaths, set up a special advice line and website, and suspended normal rules so anti-flu drugs could be given without prescription. But with just 250 or so deaths in Britain and 14,000 worldwide, the WHO is being asked to account for its actions.
Note: For lots more on the swine flu "false pandemic" from reliable sources, click here.
Is there life after death? Radiation oncologist Dr. Jeffrey Long says if you look at the scientific evidence, the answer is unequivocally yes. He makes the case for that controversial conclusion in a new book, Evidence of the Afterlife. He talked to TIME about the nature of near-death experience. [TIME:] How do you respond to skeptics who say there must be some biological or physiological basis for that kind of experience, which you say in the book is medically inexplicable? [Dr. Long:] There have been over 20 alternative, skeptical "explanations" for near-death experience. The reason is very clear: no one or several skeptical explanations make sense, even to the skeptics themselves. Or [else] there wouldn't be so many. [TIME:] You say this research has affected you a lot on a personal level. How? [Dr. Long:] I'm a physician who fights cancer. My absolute understanding that there is an afterlife for all of us — and a wonderful afterlife — helps me face cancer, this terribly frightening and threatening disease, with more courage than I've ever faced it with before. I can be a better physician for my patients.
Note: For a deeply inspiring online lesson presenting incredibly powerful near-death experiences, click here.
Our federal and state governments have dragged their feet in addressing the risks of BPA exposure - due mainly to relentless lobbying by the chemical industry. The chemical industry has used every weapon at its disposal - including lawsuits, in the case of San Francisco - to keep BPA on the shelves and in our bodies. So the Food and Drug Administration deserves mild applause for reversing its position on BPA, calling it a "concern" and offering ways in which the public can reduce its exposure to the chemical. It would have been far better for the FDA to ban the chemical, or at least require manufacturers to label products that contain it. Instead, it offered the familiar "more study is needed" defense and said that it doesn't have enough data to support a legal crackdown.
Note: The Department of Health and Human Services has released a list of ways to reduce your exposure. It can be found at www.hhs.gov/safety/bpa.
Remember the warnings of 65,000 dead? Health chiefs should admit they were wrong – yet again – about a global pandemic. Let me recap. Six months ago [the] BBC was intoning nightly statistics on what "could" happen as "the deadly virus" took hold. The happy-go-lucky virologist, John Oxford, said half the population could be infected, and that his lowest estimate was 6,000 dead. The chief medical officer, Sir Liam Donaldson, bandied about any figure that came into his head, settling on "65,000 could die", peaking at 350 corpses a day. The media went berserk. The World Health Organisation declared a "six-level alert" so as to "prepare the world for an imminent attack". If anyone dared question this drivel, they were dismissed by Donaldson as "extremists". When people started reporting swine flu to be even milder than ordinary flu, he accused them of complacency and told them to "wait for next winter". He was already buying 32m masks and spending more than Ł1bn on Tamiflu and vaccines. It was pure, systematic government-induced panic – in which I accept that the media played its joyful part.
Note: For lots more on the gross profiteering and fear mongering of swine flu scare, click here.
Important Note: Explore our full index to revealing excerpts of key major media news articles on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.