Health News StoriesExcerpts of Key Health News Stories in Major Media
Note: This comprehensive list of health news stories is usually updated once a week. Explore our full index to revealing excerpts of key major media news stories on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.
It played unwilling host to one of the bloodiest battles of the Iraq war. Fallujah's ... residents changed the name of their "City of Mosques" to "the polluted city" after the United States launched two massive military campaigns eight years ago. A new study reports a "staggering rise" in birth defects among Iraqi children conceived in the aftermath of the war. High rates of miscarriage, toxic levels of lead and mercury contamination and spiralling numbers of birth defects ranging from congenital heart defects to brain dysfunctions and malformed limbs have been recorded. There is "compelling evidence" to link the increased numbers of defects and miscarriages to military assaults, says Mozhgan Savabieasfahani, one of the lead authors of the report and an environmental toxicologist at the University of Michigan's School of Public Health. US marines first bombarded Fallujah in April 2004. Seven months later, the marines stormed the city for a second time, using some of the heaviest US air strikes deployed in Iraq. American forces later admitted that they had used white phosphorus shells, although they never admitted to using depleted uranium, which has been linked to high rates of cancer and birth defects. The new findings, published in the [Bulletin of Environmental Contamination and Toxicology], will bolster claims that US and Nato munitions used in the conflict led to a widespread health crisis in Iraq. The latest study found that in Fallujah, more than half of all babies surveyed were born with a birth defect between 2007 and 2010. Before the siege, this figure was more like one in 10. Prior to the turn of the millennium, fewer than 2 per cent of babies were born with a defect.
Note: Similar defects have been found among children born in Basra after British troops invaded, according to the report at the link above. For a five-minute BBC clip showing how the damage inflicted on Iraqi babies is being covered up at the highest levels, click here. For more on this, click here.
In the first major study of child abuse and neglect in 20 years, researchers with the National Academy of Sciences reported [on September 12] that the damaging consequences of abuse can not only reshape a child’s brain but also last a lifetime. Untreated, the effects of child abuse and neglect, the researchers found, can profoundly influence victims’ physical and mental health, their ability to control emotions and impulses, their achievement in school, and the relationships they form as children and as adults. The researchers recommended an “immediate, coordinated” national strategy to better understand, treat and prevent child abuse and neglect, noting that each year, abuse and neglect costs an estimated $80 billion in the direct costs of hospitalization, law enforcement and child welfare and the indirect costs of special education, juvenile and adult criminal justice, adult homelessness, and lost work productivity. The report ... found that while rates of physical and sexual child abuse have declined in the past 20 years, rates of emotional and psychological abuse, the kind that can produce the most serious long-lasting effects, have increased. Every year, child-protection agencies receive 3 million referrals for child abuse and neglect involving about 6 million children, the report found, though with unreported instances, the actual number is probably much higher, the researchers said. Child victims are equally likely to be male or female, the report found. The majority are younger than 5. About 80 percent of the perpetrators are parents, the vast majority biological parents. More than half of the perpetrators are female.
Note: For more on the tragic impacts suffered by victims of sexual abuse, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.
The Centers for Disease Control on [September 16] confirmed a link between routine use of antibiotics in livestock and growing bacterial resistance that is killing at least 23,000 people a year. The report is the first by the government to estimate how many people die annually of infections that no longer respond to antibiotics because of overuse in people and animals. CDC Director Thomas Frieden called for urgent steps to scale back and monitor use, or risk reverting to an era when common bacterial infections of the urinary tract, bloodstream, respiratory system and skin routinely killed and maimed. "We will soon be in a post-antibiotic era if we're not careful," Frieden said. "For some patients and some microbes, we are already there." Along with the annual fatalities, the report estimated at least 2 million antibiotic-resistant infections occur each year. Frieden said these are "minimal estimates" because they count only microbes that are resistant to multiple antibiotics and include only hospital infections, omitting cases from dialysis centers, nursing homes and other medical settings. At least 70 percent of all antibiotics in the United States are used to speed growth of farm animals or to prevent diseases among animals raised in feedlots. Routine low doses administered to large numbers of animals provide ideal conditions for microbes to develop resistance.
Note: For more on important health issues, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.
About half of all Americans take a daily multivitamin as a way to improve their health and cut their risk of diseases. But experts now say that - in almost all cases - the best way to get a full dose of vitamins is from nutritious foods rather than from pills. There is a lot of scientific evidence showing diets rich in produce, nuts, whole grains and fish promote health and decrease risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes and cancer, according to a new "Vitamins and Minerals" report from Harvard Medical School. On the other hand, studies involving vitamin supplements - and there have been many - show mixed results. In fact, after reviewing a large body of research in 2006, the National Institutes of Health decided not to definitively rule for or against multivitamins' ability to prevent diseases. So what are the quickest ways to boost the vitamin content in your meals? The report identifies about three dozen foods that have the most nutrients per calorie, including avocados, berries, cantaloupe, dark leafy greens, eggs, yogurt, lentils, beans, almonds, fish, chicken and turkey. And although most people think of citrus as the best source of vitamin C, a red pepper has twice as much as an orange. Similarly, potatoes and white beans have more potassium than bananas. The final advice from Dr. Dariush Mozaffarian, the report's editor: "Spend your time and money improving your diet, which is far more likely to pay off in the long run than popping a pill."
We all know exercise promotes health, reducing most people’s risk of developing diabetes and becoming obese. Now light has been shed on how it does this at a cellular level. It seems exercise may be able to drastically alter how genes operate, studies show. Genes are not static. They turn on or off depending on the biochemical signals they receive from elsewhere in the body. One powerful means of affecting gene activity involves a process called methylation, in which methyl groups, a cluster of carbon and hydrogen atoms, attach to the outside of a gene and make it easier or harder for that gene to receive and respond to messages from the body. What is particularly fascinating about the methylation process is that it seems to be driven largely by lifestyle. Diet, for instance, notably affects the methylation of genes. But the role of physical activity in this has been poorly understood. Researchers ... began by recruiting dozens of sedentary but generally healthy adult men. Using new molecular techniques, researchers mapped the methylation patterns on the DNA within [their] cells. Then, under the guidance of a trainer, the volunteers began attending hour-long spin or aerobics classes about twice a week for six months. By the end of that time, the men had ... altered the methylation pattern of many of the genes in their fat cells. More than 17,900 individual sites on 7663 separate genes in the fat cells now displayed changed methylation patterns. Other studies have found that exercise has an equally profound effect on DNA methylation within human muscle cells.
Note: For more on health issues, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.
Documents reveal that the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) has paid out nearly $6 million in claims to victims of HPV (Human Papillomavirus) vaccine, including families of two dead. Judicial Watch announced today that it has received documents from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) revealing that its VICP has awarded $5,877,710 dollars to 49 victims in claims made against the highly controversial HPV vaccines. To date 200 claims have been filed with VICP, with barely half adjudicated. The documents came in response to a February 28, 2013, Judicial Watch lawsuit against HHS to force the department to comply with a November 1, 2012, Judicial Watch Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request. From its inception, the use of HPV (human papillomavirus) vaccines for sexually transmitted diseases has been hotly disputed. According to the Annals of Medicine: "At present there are no significant data showing that either Gardasil or Cervarix (GlaxoSmithKline) can prevent any type of cervical cancer since the testing period employed was too short to evaluate long-term benefits of HPV vaccination." "This new information from the government shows that the serious safety concerns about the use of Gardasil have been well-founded," said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. "Public health officials should stop pushing Gardasil on children."
Note: For lots more on the risks and dangers of this vaccine being promoted by big pharma, click here.
The French researcher who caused a scientific storm when he claimed to show that some GM food led to tumours and cancers in rats has accused the UK Food Standards Agency (FSA) of "recklessly endangering public health" by not demanding long-term testing of the foods. In a series of parliamentary and public meetings held this week in London, Edinburgh and Cardiff, Prof Gilles-Eric Séralini has challenged UK politicians and safety authorities to review the way safety is assessed. Séralini, a molecular biologist at Caen University, said: "Our research found severe toxicity from GM maize and [Monsanto pesticide] Roundup. The British Food Standards Agency has uncritically accepted the European Food Safety Authority's dismissal of the study, even though many of EFSA's experts have been exposed as having conflicts of interest with the GM industry. At the very least, the British government should demand long-term mandatory safety testing on all GM foods before they are released onto the market," he said. "The British scientific authorities are deliberately misleading their government and are recklessly endangering public health in ignoring the findings of our research." Séralini's study found that rats developed much higher levels of cancers and died earlier than controls when fed a diet of Monsanto's Roundup-tolerant GM maize NK603 for two years, or were exposed to Roundup over the same period. The usual industry tests last for 90 days.
Note: For more on the risks from GMO foods, see the highly informative summary available here.
Recently the debate over genetically modified (GMO) foods has heated up again. Over the weekend New York Times writer Amy Harmon wrote again of the saving graces of genetically engineered foods, this time citing “Golden Rice” as a clear example of the life-saving abilities of GMOs. Yet ... there are other highly effective tools out there to solve hunger and malnutrition besides genetic engineering. Why am I against the creation of Golden Rice, even if it may stop millions of children from going blind? The basic answer is simple: trust. Science has a credibility problem. Today it is not “false fears” that has bred skeptical consumers, it is experience. The most audacious claim made by those who believe genetic engineering is the way to go [is] that genetic engineering is somehow better, and in the long run, cheaper than other more natural ways of eating and that the logistical complexities of getting fruits and veggies to malnourished human beings are too large to overcome. Baloney. The amount of money it has cost to concoct a product like Golden Rice is enormous. Scientists first got initial funding for Golden Rice from the Rockefeller Foundation in 1984 and have now been supported (with monies to cover lab expenses, legal fees, teaching assistants, salaries, long patent processes, etc) for more than 30 years. Meanwhile, again and again, simple low-cost, low-tech solutions like “kitchen gardening,” improved agricultural methods, and cover cropping have been found to give outstanding nutritional and economic results quickly to farmers.
Note: For more on the risks from GMOs, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.
A common virus that is harmless to people can destroy cancerous cells in the body and might be developed into a new cancer therapy, US researchers said. The virus, called adeno-associated virus type 2, or AAV-2, infects an estimated 80 percent of the population. "Our results suggest that adeno-associated virus type 2, which infects the majority of the population but has no known ill effects, kills multiple types of cancer cells yet has no effect on healthy cells," said Craig Meyers, a professor of microbiology and immunology at the Penn State College of Medicine in Pennsylvania. "We believe that AAV-2 recognizes that the cancer cells are abnormal and destroys them. This suggests that AAV-2 has great potential to be developed as an anti-cancer agent," Meyers said in a statement. AAV-2 is a small virus that cannot replicate itself without the help of another virus. But with the help of a second virus it kills cells. For their study, Meyers and colleagues first infected a batch of human cells with HPV, some strains of which cause cervical cancer. They then infected these cells and normal cells with AAV-2. After six days, all the HPV-infected cells died. The same thing happened with cervical, breast, prostate and squamous cell tumor cells. "One of the most compelling findings is that AAV-2 appears to have no pathologic effects on healthy cells," Meyers said. "So many cancer therapies are as poisonous to healthy cells as they are to cancer cells. A therapy that is able to distinguish between healthy and cancer cells could be less difficult to endure for those with cancer."
Note: For more on promising cancer cures, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.
Sixteen-year-old Jack Andraka's innovative mind led him to create a new way to detect pancreatic, ovarian and lung cancer. "I created a new way to detect pancreatic, ovarian and lung cancer that costs three cents and takes five minutes to run," he said. After a close friend died from pancreatic cancer, this 16-year-old from Crownsville, Maryland, unleashed his hyper-drive intellect on preventing more cancer deaths. "It's 168 times faster, over 26,000 times less expensive, and over 400 times more sensitive than our current methods of diagnosis," he said. Tinkering in his room and using information readily available online, he came up with a new way to detect cancer. "85 percent of all pancreatic cancers are diagnosed late, when someone has less than a two percent chance of survival. And our current test costs $800 per test and misses 30 percent of all pancreatic cancers," he said. He won last year's Intel International Science and Engineering Fair. The sweet validation came with $100,000 in scholarships, but Jack Andraka's got his eye on even bigger things. "The name of the competition is called the Tricorder XPRIZE," he said. "It's a $10 million prize. Essentially what you have to do is develop something the size of a smartphone that you scan over your skin and it will diagnose any disease instantly." Jack is fielding a team of other high-schoolers to compete against 300 teams of adult scientists and corporations in the Qualcomm Tricorder XPRIZE competition. He says youth is an advantage -- that new eyes are more likely to solve old problems.
Note: Let's hope this invention gets fast tracked and makes it to market. Notice how little attention this exciting development received. To read about many potential cancer cures reported in major media which have not made it to market for financial reasons, click here. For a treasure trove of great news articles which will inspire you to make a difference, click here.
In just a decade, and using a deceptively simple approach, Kaiser Permanente doubled the percentage of Northern California patients whose blood pressures were brought down to healthy levels. The Kaiser program relied on close monitoring by a team of health care workers and the use of cheaper, more efficient drugs to treat high blood pressure. Over the course of an eight-year study, the percentage of patients with high blood pressure who had it under control increased from 44 percent in 2001 to 80 percent in 2009. The rate continued to climb after the study ended, and as of 2011, 87 percent of patients had lowered their high blood pressure to a healthy level. The results are intriguing because high blood pressure ... is treatable with medication and lifestyle changes, but has remained stubbornly difficult to control in most patients, Kaiser doctors said. During the years of the Kaiser study, the number of heart attacks and strokes fell substantially. Dr. Don Conkling, a 63-year-old Kaiser member who was part of the study, managed to get his blood pressure into a normal, healthy range for the first time since his early 40s. He lost about 60 pounds, cut out sugar and meat from his diet, and started walking several times a day, often for miles at a time, with his dog Sophie. Conkling, a veterinarian in San Bruno, also meditates every day for 45 minutes or longer to help reduce stress from his job. Not all patients have to make such drastic lifestyle changes to lower their blood pressure, Conkling said.
Note: For a treasure trove of great news articles which will inspire you to make a difference, click here.
Many of the chemicals found in America's most common foods are considered to be so unhealthy that they're actually illegal in other countries. Rich Food, Poor Food by [Dr.] Jayson Calton and Mira Calton, a certified nutritionist, features a list of what the authors call 'Banned Bad Boys' - a list of the ingredients, where they're banned and what caused governments to ban them. One of the most common 'Bad Boys' is different variations of food coloring, which actually is made from petroleum and is found in everyday items like soda, sports drinks, mac and cheese, cake, candy and several other common, American products. The chemicals used to make these different dyes have proven to cause various different cancers and can even potentially mutate healthy DNA. European countries like Norway, Finland, France and Austria all have banned at least one variation of petroleum-containing food coloring. Another common additive banned in other countries but allowed in the U.S. is Olestra, which essentially is a fat substitute found in products that traditionally have actual fat. For example, low-fat potato chips ... contain Olestra - which is shown to cause the depletion of fat-soluble vitamins. Olestra has been banned in several countries, including the United Kingdom and Canada. In 2003, the FDA lifted a requirement forcing companies that use Olestra in their products to include a label warning consumers that the food their eating could cause 'cramps and diarrhea,' despite the fact that the agency received more than 20,000 reports of gastrointestinal complaints among olestra eaters.
Note: We don't usually use the Daily Mail as a reliable source, but as this article is so important and no other major media is reporting it, we decided to include it here. For more on corporate and government corruption, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here and here.
Amid questions about the safety of the HPV vaccine Gardasil, one of the lead researchers for the Merck drug is speaking out about its risks, benefits and aggressive marketing. Dr. Diane Harper says young girls and their parents should receive more complete warnings before receiving the vaccine to prevent cervical cancer. Dr. Harper helped design and carry out the Phase II and Phase III safety and effectiveness studies to get Gardasil approved, and authored many of the published, scholarly papers about it. She has been a paid speaker and consultant to Merck. It's highly unusual for a researcher to publicly criticize a medicine or vaccine she helped get approved. Dr. Harper joins a number of consumer watchdogs, vaccine safety advocates, and parents who question the vaccine's risk-versus-benefit profile. She says data available for Gardasil shows that ... there is no data showing that it remains effective beyond five years. This raises questions about the CDC's recommendation that the series of shots be given to girls as young as 11-years old. "If we vaccinate 11 year olds and the protection doesn't last... we've put them at harm from side effects, small but real, for no benefit," says Dr. Harper. "The benefit to public health is nothing, there is no reduction in cervical cancers, they are just postponed, unless the protection lasts for at least 15 years, and over 70% of all sexually active females of all ages are vaccinated." She also says that enough serious side effects have been reported after Gardasil use that the vaccine could prove riskier than the cervical cancer it purports to prevent. Cervical cancer is usually entirely curable when detected early through normal Pap screenings.
Note: For more on the dangers of vaccines, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.
A group of experts advising the nation’s premier cancer research institution has recommended changing the definition of cancer and eliminating the word from some common diagnoses as part of sweeping changes in the nation’s approach to cancer detection and treatment. The recommendations, from a working group of the National Cancer Institute, were published [in] The Journal of the American Medical Association. They say, for instance, that some premalignant conditions, like one that affects the breast called ductal carcinoma in situ, which many doctors agree is not cancer, should be renamed to exclude the word carcinoma so that patients are less frightened and less likely to seek what may be unneeded and potentially harmful treatments that can include the surgical removal of the breast. The group, which includes some of the top scientists in cancer research, also suggested that many lesions detected during breast, prostate, thyroid, lung and other cancer screenings should not be called cancer at all but should instead be reclassified as IDLE conditions, which stands for “indolent lesions of epithelial origin.” The impetus behind the call for change is a growing concern among doctors, scientists and patient advocates that hundreds of thousands of men and women are undergoing needless and sometimes disfiguring and harmful treatments for premalignant and cancerous lesions that are so slow growing they are unlikely to ever cause harm. Once doctors and patients are aware a lesion exists, they typically feel compelled to biopsy, treat and remove it, often at great physical and psychological pain and risk to the patient.
Note: Isn't it interesting that a diagnosis which might not even be accurate can so change a person's life? For more on promising cancer cures which are being suppressed by the medical-industrial complex, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.
A simian virus known as SV40 has been associated with a number of rare human cancers. This same virus contaminated the polio vaccine administered to 98 million Americans from 1955 to 1963. Federal health officials see little reason for concern. A growing cadre of medical researchers disagree. A breakthrough in the war against polio had come in the early 1950s, when Jonas Salk took advantage of a new discovery: monkey kidneys could be used to culture the abundant quantities of polio virus necessary to mass-produce a vaccine. But there were problems with the monkey kidneys. In 1960 Bernice Eddy, a government researcher, discovered that when she injected hamsters with the kidney mixture on which the vaccine was cultured, they developed tumors. Eddy's superiors tried to keep the discovery quiet, but Eddy presented her data at a cancer conference in New York. She was eventually demoted, and lost her laboratory. The cancer-causing virus was soon isolated by other scientists and dubbed SV40, because it was the fortieth simian virus discovered. Alarm spread through the scientific community as researchers realized that nearly every dose of the vaccine had been contaminated. In 1961 federal health officials ordered vaccine manufacturers to screen for the virus and eliminate it from the vaccine. Worried about creating a panic, they kept the discovery of SV40 under wraps and never recalled existing stocks. For two more years millions of additional people were needlessly exposed -- bringing the total to 98 million Americans from 1955 to 1963.
Note: This fascinating report on modern research into SV40's role in human cancers is well worth reading in its entirety at the link above. It is most strange that the CDC posted a webpage stating "it has been estimated that 10–30 million Americans could have received an SV40 contaminated dose of vaccine" and much more, but the webpage was then taken down. Using the Internet Archive, you can still see the revealing page that has been removed at this link.
Researchers say they have created a drug that has killed every kind of cancer tumor it has come in contact with, according to Science Magazine. The antibody treatment works by blocking a protein called CD47 which tricks the body into not destroying cancerous cells. After the protein is blocked, the body can then recognize the cancer cells as invaders and attack. While the research is seen as a step closer to discovering a treatment that can cure all cancers, the drug has only been tested on mice and will need to prove itself on humans before it can be available to patients. This may take a few years. The research team has been given the green light and recently received a four-year, $20 million grant to conduct human clinical trials. Research for this new drug started a decade ago when biologist Irving Weissman at Stanford University was studying leukemia cells. He found that that leukemia cells produce higher levels of the CD47 protein than healthy cells. CD47 acts as a "don't-eat-me" signal, instructing the body to not eat harmful cells. Cancers take advantage of this signal to trick the immune system into ignoring them. Weissman's research showed that blocking CD47 can cure more than just blood cancers. The drug can also shrink or cure human breast, ovary, colon, bladder, brain, liver and prostate tumors that have been transplanted into mice. The treatment forced the mice's immune system to kill the cancer cells. This means this single drug could cure a variety of cancers and prevent cancers from spreading in the body.
Note: With many millions around the world dying of cancer every year, why aren't the most promising treatments being fast-tracked? Why is this article titled a "rumor"? Why isn't this making major headlines? Why isn't the very promising treatment of DCA, which is both cheap and incredibly promising, being given many millions to move rapidly forward? To read major media articles describing other potential cures not being adequately funded, click here. To understand why some treatments are suppressed, click here.
In March, the head of the Centers for Disease Control issued an alarm, echoed by virtually every health authority in the world, that antibiotic-resistant bacteria threaten to return humans to the days when ordinary infections routinely killed and maimed. Yet the United States continues to use at least 70 percent of its antibiotics on livestock. Millions of pounds of antibiotics are routinely administered at low doses to large numbers of animals living in crowded conditions ... to speed their growth and prevent possible infections, creating ideal conditions for bacteria to become resistant. At the same time, drug-resistant infections acquired in hospitals kill 70,000 people a year. The problem is so dire that the Obama administration is paying drug companies to develop new antibiotics, and some groups want to test them directly on sick people to speed approval. While many physicians try to limit antibiotic use on sick patients to slow the spread of resistance, livestock growers can buy antibiotics over the counter at a feed store. "Many hospitals have implemented antimicrobial stewardship programs, in which every milligram of antibiotic use is scrutinized," said Dr. Tom Newman, a professor of epidemiology and biostatistics at UCSF. About once a month, Brad Spellberg, an infectious disease researcher at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, said he sees patients with abdominal or urinary tract E. coli infections that resist all oral antibiotics. Doctors are down to "one or two last-ditch IVs," or intravenous administration of antibiotics against some bacteria.
Note: For more on important health issues, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.
Peter Doshi ... is one of the most influential voices in medical research today. Dr. Doshi’s renown comes not from solving the puzzles of cancer or discovering the next blockbuster drug, but from pushing the world’s biggest pharmaceutical companies to open their records to outsiders. Together with a band of far-flung researchers and activists, he is trying to unearth data from clinical trials — complex studies that last for years and often involve thousands of patients across many countries — and make it public. The current system, the activists say, is one in which the meager details of clinical trials published in medical journals, often by authors with financial ties to the companies whose drugs they are writing about, is insufficient to the point of being misleading. For years, researchers have talked about the problem of publication bias, or selectively publishing results of trials. Concern about such bias gathered force in the 1990s and early 2000s, when researchers documented how, time and again, positive results were published while negative ones were not. Taken together, studies have shown that results of only about half of clinical trials make their way into medical journals. In 2009, Dr. Doshi and his colleagues set out to answer a simple question about the anti-flu drug Tamiflu: Does it work? Resolving that question has been far harder than they ever envisioned, and, four years later, there is still no definitive answer.
Note: If the public is going to be taking these drugs, shouldn't all safety studies be publicly available? What are the drug companies hiding? For more on corruption in the pharmaceutical industry, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.
Volunteering is a simple way to help others, but it’s also a powerful way to help yourself. Beyond the good feelings you’ll get from donating your time, and the potential to develop new, meaningful relationships with people in your community, volunteering has a significant impact on your physical health, including a boost to your heart health. New research from Carnegie Mellon University, scheduled to be published in the journal Psychology and Aging, followed more than 1,000 adults between the ages of 51 and 91. Those who volunteered for at least 200 hours a year were 40 percent less likely to develop high blood pressure than those who did not. Research shows volunteering can cut your overall mortality risk by 47 percent, may lower your risk of depression and anxiety, and even boost your psychological well-being. The type of volunteer work appeared to be irrelevant. Rather, it was the amount of time spent doing it that mattered. The benefits are particularly pronounced among older adults, a population that tends to slow down once retirement hits. Social interaction, and the stress relief it can provide, is likely one major reason why volunteering has a beneficial effect on blood pressure, as it’s a well-known fact that stress elevates blood pressure. Blood pressure aside, volunteering is not only a boon for your heart health. It’s likely that one reason volunteering is so beneficial is simply because it keeps you active and on your feet. Instead of resigning yourself to your couch, choosing to volunteer adds many hours of non-exercise activity to your life – a key to optimal health.
Note: For a treasure trove of great news articles which will inspire you to make a difference, click here.
Drug companies face accusations of secretly colluding with pharmacists to overcharge the NHS millions of pounds, following an undercover investigation by The Telegraph. Pharmaceutical firms appear to have rigged the market in so-called "specials" – prescription drugs that are largely not covered by national NHS price regulations. The prices of more than 20,000 drugs could have been artificially inflated, with backhanders paid to chemists who agreed to sell them. Representatives of some companies agreed to invoice chemists for drugs at up to double their actual cost. Chemists would then send inflated invoices to the NHS, allowing them to pocket the difference. Tens of thousands of the "special" drugs are not on the nationally controlled NHS price list and so costs can be manipulated by drug companies. Sales representatives for drug firms were secretly recorded by this newspaper offering to provide apparently falsified invoices allowing chemists to bill the NHS for sums far greater than they would spend. Another firm offered to pay an annual fee to chemists who agreed to offer its prescription drugs. Hundreds of millions of pounds of taxpayers money are feared to have been wasted in recent years due to the practice. The undercover investigation was launched after this newspaper was approached by a whistle-blower who alleged widespread malpractice. Undercover reporters posed as investors hoping to set up a chain of chemists.
Note: Watch the incriminating videos of these undercover deals at the link above. For more on pharmaceutical corruption, see the deeply revealing reports from reliable major media sources available here.
Important Note: Explore our full index to revealing excerpts of key major media news stories on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.