Eating plenty of wholegrains cuts your risk of bowel cancer‏

Wholegrains and bowel cancer – what you need to know | CRUK

barley-2465781_960_720.jpg

Eating plenty of wholegrains cuts your risk of bowel cancer, according to a new report. And it seems we can reap the benefits without making wild changes to our diets .

The news comes from a report produced by the World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF) and the American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR), outlining the latest evidence on how we can reduce our risk of bowel cancer.

It focusses on the effects of diet, weight, physical activity and alcohol on bowel cancer risk. And with bowel cancer being the fourth most common cancer in the UK, finding ways to reduce our risk of the disease are important.

The WCRF studies all the evidence on a potential cause of cancer and decides whether that evidence is strong enough to support recommendations on ways we can reduce our risk.

Advertisements

How the alcohol industry mislead the public about alcohol and cancer

Alcohol consumption increases the risk of several types of cancer, including several common cancers | Drug and Alcohol Review

beer-tap-2435408_960_720.jpg

As part of their corporate social responsibility activities, the alcohol industry (AI) disseminates information about alcohol and cancer. We examined the information on this which the AI disseminates to the public through its ‘social aspects and public relations organizations’ and related bodies. The aim of the study was to determine its comprehensiveness and accuracy.

Most of the organisations were found to disseminate misrepresentations of the evidence about the association between alcohol and cancer. Three main industry strategies were identified:

  1.  denial/omission: denying, omitting or disputing the evidence that alcohol consumption increases cancer risk.
  2. distortion: mentioning cancer, but misrepresenting the risk.
  3. distraction: focussing discussion away from the independent effects of alcohol on common cancers. Breast cancer and colorectal cancer appeared to be a particular focus for this misrepresentation.

Full reference: Petticrew, M. et al. (2017) How alcohol industry organisations mislead the public about alcohol and cancer. Drug and Alcohol Review. Published online: 7 Septmeber 2017

Alcohol: applying All Our Health

Evidence and guidance to help healthcare professionals reduce alcohol-related harm | Public Health England

Public Health England have updated their evidence and guidance pages to reflect the correct number of adults drinking at levels that pose risk to their health.

Alcohol-related harm is a major health problem. Reducing alcohol-related harm is one of the key indicators in health improvement.

31% of men and 16% of women in England drink alcohol in a way that presents increasing risk or potential harm to their health and wellbeing. This proportion is higher for the 15 to 64 age group.  The Global Burden of Disease Study 2013 revealed that, in England, alcohol misuse is the biggest risk factor for early death, ill health and disability for those aged 15 to 49 years. For all ages it is the fifth most important.

Up to 17 million working days are lost annually through absences caused by drinking; up to 20 million are lost through loss of employment or reduced employment opportunities.

Public Health England’s alcohol learning resources provides online resources and learning for commissioners, planners and practitioners working to reduce alcohol-related harm.

alcohol

Image source: http://www.gov.uk

Read more at Public Health England

Sugary beverage intake and preclinical Alzheimer’s

Excess sugar consumption has been linked with Alzheimer’s disease (AD) pathology in animal models | Alzheimers & Dementia

soda-1300880_960_720.jpg

We examined the cross-sectional association of sugary beverage consumption with neuropsychological (N = 4276) and magnetic resonance imaging (N = 3846) markers of preclinical Alzheimer’s disease and vascular brain injury (VBI) in the community-based Framingham Heart Study. Intake of sugary beverages was estimated using a food frequency questionnaire.

Relative to consuming less than one sugary beverage per day, higher intake of sugary beverages was associated with lower total brain volume (1–2/day, β ± standard error [SE] = −0.55 ± 0.14 mean percent difference, P = .0002; >2/day, β ± SE = −0.68 ± 0.18, P < .0001), and poorer performance on tests of episodic memory (all P < .01). Daily fruit juice intake was associated with lower total brain volume, hippocampal volume, and poorer episodic memory (all P < .05). Sugary beverage intake was not associated with VBI in a consistent manner across outcomes.

Higher intake of sugary beverages was associated cross-sectionally with markers of preclinical AD.

Full reference: Pase, M.P. et a; (2017) Sugary beverage intake and preclinical Alzheimer’s disease in the community. Alzheimers & Dementia. Vol. 13 (Issue 9) pp. 955–964.

Effectiveness of dementia risk reduction messaging in NHS health checks | via @alzheimerssoc

NHS health check 40-64 dementia pilot research findings | Alzheimer’s Society

10774-2

The NHS Health Check programme is a statutory public health intervention commissioned by all local authorities in England. It aims to improve the health and wellbeing of adults aged 40-74 years through the promotion of earlier awareness, assessment, and management of the major risks factors and conditions driving premature death, disability and health inequalities in England.

The overall aim of the research was to evaluate the pilot and assess the feasibility of extending the NHS Health Check for 40-64 year olds to include a dementia risk reduction component. Specific objectives of the research included first, to understand the impact of the NHS Health Check on an individual’s knowledge and awareness of dementia risk reduction and the impact of the intervention on individuals’ intention to change behaviour.

The second objective was to identify (where sample sizes allowed) whether any differences in the delivery of the intervention between pilot sites had any effect on individual’s awareness and understanding of dementia risk reduction.

The third objective was to understand professional awareness and confidence in promoting dementia risk reduction messages and to identify further training requirements, resources and support.

The final objective was to assess any implications for services and commissioners and provide PHE with advice on any further longer-term evaluation that will be required.

Full report here

One in three cases of dementia preventable

A new report identifies powerful tools to prevent dementia and touts the benefits of nonmedical interventions for people with dementia | ScienceDaily

170720094907_1_900x600

Image source: The Lancet

Managing lifestyle factors such as hearing loss, smoking, hypertension and depression could prevent one-third of the world’s dementia cases, according to a report by the first Lancet Commission on Dementia Prevention and Care. Presented at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference (AAIC) 2017 and published in The Lancet, the report also highlights the beneficial effects of nonpharmacologic interventions such as social contact and exercise for people with dementia.

The commission’s report identifies nine risk factors in early, mid- and late life that increase the likelihood of developing dementia. About 35 percent of dementia — one in three cases — is attributable to these risk factors, the report says.

By increasing education in early life and addressing hearing loss, hypertension and obesity in midlife, the incidence of dementia could be reduced by as much as 20 percent, combined.

In late life, stopping smoking, treating depression, increasing physical activity, increasing social contact and managing diabetes could reduce the incidence of dementia by another 15 percent.

Expert reaction from to two studies looking at coffee consumption and risk of death

Two studies publishing in the Annals of Internal Medicine assess the association between higher coffee consumption and reduced risk of death | Science Media Centre

coffee-cup-2317201_960_720.jpg

Dr Tim Chico, Reader in Cardiovascular Medicine / consultant cardiologist, University of Sheffield, said:

“These two studies followed many thousands of people for 16 years and compared death rates in coffee drinkers with non-coffee drinkers.  In keeping with previous studies, death rates were slightly lower in coffee drinkers than in non-coffee drinkers.

“The studies were well conducted and have the advantage of having observed thousands of people from many different countries and ethnic backgrounds, and the association between coffee drinking and mortality seems to be the same across all these populations.

“The authors of both studies are commendably cautious about whether or not coffee drinking is the cause of the reduced mortality in coffee drinkers, or whether there are other unknown differences between coffee drinkers and non-coffee drinkers that are the real cause for the differences observed.  Neither study seems to take into account the income of the people involved (although they do adjust for educational level) and since coffee isn’t cheap it is possible that non-coffee drinkers are less well off, which would be a potential explanation for some of the differences seen.

“What can we conclude from these studies?  The authors of both papers sensibly go no further than concluding that their results show that coffee drinking is not harmful.  I’m occasionally asked by patients whether they should drink coffee and these studies will help in advising them that coffee drinking is safe.

“The only way to be certain whether or not coffee might make people live longer is to force many thousands of people to drink it regularly, while preventing many thousands of otherwise similar people to never drink coffee.  A study like this is never going to take place, so we may never know the answer to this question.

“I don’t think this study should lead anyone to drink more coffee in search of a health benefit that might not actually exist.  It is useful to compare this to the proven benefits of physical activity.  A 20-min walk to a local coffee shop will definitely provide many health benefits, even if you don’t actually go in and buy anything.”