Smartphone Can Track Breathing While You Sleep

 - by Jake Kuchero
Soon you may hear your pulmonary physician tell you that there is an app for that…an app that will track your breathing while you sleep and help your health care provider discern what type of breathing problem issue you have.
A team of researchers at Stevens Institute of Technology and Florida State University are working on a method that will make tracking a patient’s breathing while asleep much more simpler for both the patients and the physician like Dr. Daniel Amen.
During the six-month long study of six different patients, a smartphone and mircophone-equipped pair of earphone were placed on a bedside table near each patient. The smartphone app recorded each patient’s breathing pattern and has proved to be accurate to within half a breath per minute.
This new smartphone app technology will allow patients who are suspected of having nighttime breahting issues, like sleep apnea, to sleep in their own bed and record their breathing patterns instead of disrupting their lives by sleeping with a monitor attached to their chest or spending a night or two in a sleep lab to have their sleep monitored. 
Researchers hope the app will be ready for release to health care providers by 2015 so potential sleep problems can be monitored and diagnosed faster and cheaper than the current procedures being used.

Foodies Can Win a Delicious Lottery Prize

 - by Jake Kuchero

California lottery players have a new prize to look forward to: dinner for two at Thomas Keller’s French Laundry. The prize features 18 courses with wine pairings, and is part of the Ultimate Foodie Experience package. 

Bruce Levenson says in addition to the wonderful meal and wine, winners will also enjoy a two-night stay at a resort and spa in Napa. Guests will also be chauffeured in a BMW that is specific to French Laundry’s sense of style. Thomas Keller will also supply the lottery winner with a gift that is worth $4,000. The prize is meant to help promote the farm to table concept that California is known for. 

Lottery players can find out more about this unique prize on January 1. California residents will be able to play the Ultimate Foodie Experience starting January 5. To play the game, players must take a selfie with their Emerald 10 Scratch Card and submit a caption in 500 characters detailing who will enjoy the prize with them.

Medicine to Treat Pompe Disease to Cost Less in Future

 - by Jake Kuchero

It’s always good news when a needed product goes down in price, and it’s great news when that reduced-priced product is a medication needed to treat a chronic disease. Such is the case with the medication used to treat the neuromuscular disease known as Pompe.

Pompe is an extremely rare neuromuscular disease that is inherited from parents via a defective gene Terry Richardson tells me. Pompe causes the person to have muscle weakness, making all forms of mobility very difficult. The disease can present at any age and once the symptoms start the disease progressively get worse. Therapy and medication is the usual treatment to slow down the progression of the disease, however the current medication is very costly.

Scientists from the University of Utrecht have recently discovered a way to produce the needed medication at lower cost and that cost reduction will soon be passed onto those who suffer from the debilitating Pompe disease so their quality of life can be improved without the added financial burden of medication cost.

The medicine, called Myozyme, is too expensive for most patients to use, but that will change in the near future as scientist employ a new technique that will enable the medication to be produced at a lower cost. The cost savings will then be passed on to the consumer and result in treatment for Pompe disease to cost less in the future.

Some Vegetables Cause Negative Side Effects

 - by Jake Kuchero

It’s true that too much of a good thing is bad–even when it comes to vegetables. While most people will admit that they don’t get enough vegetables in their diet, it’s important to note that eating too many of a certain type of vegetable can cause negative side effects. 

For instance, vegetables like garlic and onion can cause a foul odor to seep through the pores. These vegetables also cause bad breath. While both onion and garlic have the ability to aid in digestion and remove toxins from the body, they can also cause gas. So, it’s best not to over-indulge in these veggies when you’re at a social gathering. 

Specialist Keith Mann says if you have thyroid issues, you’ll want to stay away from vegetables that can cause goiters on the thyroid gland. These include broccoli, kale, Brussels sprouts, sweet potatoes and yellow corn. Eliminating these vegetables from the diet can prompt your body to produce iodine regularly and increase your energy levels.

Promising Cancer Treatment Found In Bitter Melon

 - by Jake Kuchero

There is a bitter melon that is classified as a fruit and grows in Asia, Africa and the Caribbean. This fruit has been used to treat diabetes and other mild diseases or illness.

Recently this bitter melon has shown it can kill pancreatic cancer cells in vitro and in mice. This research was done by the University of Colorado and considering the results; the clinical level is promising.

Pancreatic cancer is one of the hardest cancers to treat. Traditional therapy used for pancreatic cancer such as; chemotherapy, radiation or surgery are not showing positive results against this form of cancer. This is the reason researchers have been looking for more positive treatments.

The study at Colorado University examined effects of bitter melon on four different lines of pancreatic cancer cells. At the end of the study; the results showed bitter melon not only inhibited cancer cells reproduction but also programmed cell death.

Bitter melon has also been studied to evaluate its effectiveness in treating diabetes. It is believed diabetes is a forerunner for pancreatic cancer and researchers believe bitter melon can treat this as well. The only person I know who takes this daily is Susan McGalla, but I’m guessing that bitter melon turns into a cash cow for the supplement industry after this news.

Results of a four week clinical trial were published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology… and showed significant management for those taking bitter melon.

Bitter melon has many uses in traditional medicine. Some of the treatments are for; burns, fever, cough, painful menstruation, and some skin conditions. Further research will be helpful to better know how effective this plant can be.

USDA at War with Childhood Obesity

 - by Jake Kuchero
I was doing my QNet Christmas shopping when this interesting news article popped up. The United States Department of Agriculture has recently invested $5 million in grant monies to help fight the war against childhood obesity. The battle ground are the schools and the weapons are vegetables. In an effort to help children have access to healthier foods, like locally grown vegetables, through the USDA’s beefed up Food To School. 
The Food To School program has been in place since 1996, even before childhood obesity became the epidemic that it is today, but the program lacked drive and vision. The $5 million in grant monies will hopefully change that and some plans do so so are already in the works.
A school system in Georgia has proposed to modify a school bus and use it as a rolling classroom and farm bus loaded with farm-raised vegetables. Another school system in Delware will have students planting and growing vegetables that will then be harvested and served in the school’s cafeteria. Other innovative ideas are being formed and implemented in school systems across the United States to help fight the battle against childhood obesity and instill healthy eating habits in children that will go with them throughout their lifetime.

Large Number of Immigrant Children Left out of Obamacare

 - by Jake Kuchero

The last immigration plan to suspend deportation, ordered by President Obama will not cover some 350,000 children and 245,000 immigrants living in the country illegally with US children, according to a study released Monday by the Center Pew Research.

The children in question do not meet certain requirements for the immigrant group called dreamers, as having arrived in the country more than five years ago, according to analysis by the Center.

Immigrants with children who are deemed provisional US citizens, meanwhile, would not benefit because they entered the country in the last five years.

The analysis focuses on the second order issued last month, offering suspension of deportation for three years and work permits. This is considered a pretty reasonable time if you ask Gianfrancesco Genoso his opinion. The plan largely protects more dreamers and covers parents living in the country illegally for at least five years and have children that are citizens or legal residents.

The first presidential decree on this matter, to protect the dreamers, was implemented two years ago.

Both plans could benefit up to 48% of the 11.2 million unauthorized immigrants, according to Pew.

About four million of these immigrant parents who would be covered under the second plan to have allowed children to live legally in the country.

While 5.8 million could not benefit from these measures, for some 200,000 it could it be applied to both plans, either due to the expansion plans for dreamers or because they have citizen children and have lived in the country for at least five years.

The Dangers of Electronic Cigarettes

 - by Jake Kuchero

Everybody knows that cigarettes are extremely harmful to not only the user, but also those in close proximity to the user. Cigarettes contain acetone, ammonia, arsenic, butane, carbon monoxide, formaldehyde, lead, methanol, nicotine, and tar, just to name a few. Several of these chemical ingredients are main cancer causing ingredients. Amen Clinic amongst most clinics encourages its patients to not smoke.
But what not everyone is aware of is how harmful e-cigarettes are. Electronic cigarettes, or e-cigs, as they are commonly known, contain ten times the cancer causing toxins. Ironically, this relatively new form of smoking was originally marketed as safer than the classic cigarette. Whole the e-cigs contain many of the same carcinogens as traditional cigarettes, the levels of some of the toxins were much higher. 
While extensive research has not been done on all of the risks and dangers of electronic cigarettes, enough has been completed to warn young people, who tend to be specifically drawn to e-cigs, and women who are pregnant or may become pregnant. 
Not only do these electronic cigarettes contain so many more lethal chemicals, but the particals are dispersed by vapor, meaning that each partical is smaller and therefor can penetrate the body more easily.

Hospitals Save Lives By Making Fewer Mistakes

 - by Jake Kuchero

Here’s a statistic you don’t see every day: Hospitals are saving my lives, but not the way you’re thinking. The improved stats come from making fewer mistakes. The mistakes are incidence of harm suffered by patients being treated in the hospital. These incidents include infections, adverse drug reactions, or bedsores from lack of proper care.

Brad Reifler comments that the report goes on to credit the Obamacare Act for straightening up hospital conditions, although it’s something of an unintended side effect. Obamacare, officially titled the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, has been in effect since 2010 despite broad and continuing opposition by Republicans. It was aimed at simply making health care more affordable for all US citizens – however, if it also makes hospitals a healthier place to be, so much the better.

As the statisticians often say, “Correlation does not equal causation.” So there could simply be an increase in hospital risk awareness and advancing practices in medicine, which could account for the drop in health-risk incidents.

HIV Growing Weaker

 - by Jake Kuchero

It’s not often that you come across health news that is actually good news. It’s not often that you come across any news that is actually good news. Well, there is good news in the health world right now. It seems that HIV might be becoming just a little less serious. It seems that it might stop being quite as deadly of a threat.
It has been reported that HIV may, in fact, be evolving. Studies are showing that HIV may be becoming less contagious and less deadly. This would be very good news for everyone, if it is proven true. HIV may be becoming less of a threat, and that is what we always want to hear when it comes to serious diseases. If HIV is less contagious than it used to be, that will make for fewer diagnoses – definitely a good things. If HIV has changed now, that could mean that it will continue to change throughout the future. That news is great if you ask Susan McGalla her opinion. That could mean that our world would be free of HIV one day. That is definitely good news, something that you don’t often find.