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Health Warnings

Potential Dangers Of Anti-Influenza Drug Tamiflu

I just read a disturbing article in the New York Times about recent reports of deaths and abnormal behaviour in Japanese children who were given the anti-influenza drug Tamiflu.

Here is a summary of the key points I learned from this article:

1. Tamiflu was approved for use in the United States in 1999, and in Japan in late 2000.

2. According to Roche, the manufacturer of Tamiflu, of the 13 million prescriptions written for children worldwide, 11.6 million have been in Japan. Read more


Mercury In Fish

Just read a great piece on this topic in today's Washington Post. Here is summary of the main points that I took from it:

1. According to an analysis by a scientist at the Environmental Protection Agency, women living in coastal areas have twice as much mercury in their blood as women who live inland. Read more


High Doses Of Aspirin Can Cause Hearing Loss And Ulcers

A study in the September issue of Biophysical Journal provides an excellent explanation for why high doses of aspirin can cause ulcers and temporary deafness.

Researchers from Rice University in Texas report that salicylate (the active metabolite of aspirin) weakens thin, fatty membranes, including those that make up the lining of your stomach and those that are critical for proper inner ear functioning. Read more


Protect Yourself Against Hearing Loss

Noise-induced hearing loss is becoming a larger health crisis every year, especially among those who listen to CD and mp3 players on a regular basis.

A recent article on takes a close look at this issue, and points out the following:

1. Researchers are finding that growing numbers of students and people in their 30s and 40s are suffering from noise-induced hearing loss, as well as chronic ringing in their ears, a condition known as tinnitis. Read more


Food Coloring Inhibits Immune System

A recent study out of the University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine reports that very large amounts of a caramel food coloring can suppress the immune system.

You would think that scientists would use this information to warn people about the dangers of eating processed foods that have artificial colours. Read more


Value Your Eyesight? Then Don't Smoke

If someone you know still doesn't have enough motivation to quit smoking, you may want to let him or her know that the link between smoking and blindness is about as strong as the link between smoking and lung cancer. Read more


Beware of Lead in Children's Lunch Boxes

The Center for Environmental Health (CEH) in Oakland, California filed a lawsuit on August 31, 2005 against manufacturers and retailers of soft vinyl lunch boxes that can potentially expose children to dangerous levels of lead.

The amount of lead found in soft vinyl lunch boxes is not enough to cause acute lead poisoning, but is enough to contribute to health problems now and in the future, the most common of which are: Read more


More Potential Dangers Of Using Cell Phones

I just came across an important article on the potential health risks of using cell phones in the July 10th issue of the Toronto Star. Read more


Choose Your Lipstick and Lip Balm Wisely

Do you know that using lipstick or lip balm can increase your risk of developing cancer and autoimmune diseases? If you use lipstick or lip balm on a regular basis, I highly recommend that you visit the Environmental Working Group's online safety assessment catalogue for dangerous chemicals in personal care products. You can type the names of cosmetics that you use into the EWG's search engine and learn how safe or dangerous they are. Read more


Potential Dangers Of Regular Cell Phone Use

Here are some points* that all cell phone users need to be aware of:

  • The risk of death from brain cancer is higher for cell phone users who hold their cell phones against their heads compared to those who keep their cell phones away from their heads.
  • Using a cell phone for six years or more is associated with a fifty percent increase in risk of developing an acoustic neuroma, a benign tumour of a nerve that lies close to the ear and is within close range of the radiation that comes from a cell phone's antenna.



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