HealthWise at 5 From 11.8 - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

11/8/02

HealthWise at 5 From 11.8

  • Coffee and Diabetes

Coffee often gets a bad wrap but a new study suggests America's favorite hot drink might actually reduce the risk of the most common form of diabetes. Researchers say it's the caffeine that significantly reduces the body's ability to metabolize sugar. The study in the medical journal, Lancet, looked at the coffee drinking habits and rate of Type-2 Diabetes in 17,000 Dutch people. They found those who drank the most coffee had less than half the risk of developing Type-2 Diabetes than those who drank two cups or less per day.

All that sounds pretty good but how much coffee did it take to do some good? Seven cups a day. Long-term effects of the brew on insulin sensitivity are still a mystery. Scientists say this study highlights the possibility that coffee's other components, primarily magnesium and chlorogenic acid, could over the long term, boost insulin sensitivity, counteracting the caffeine effects and protecting against the disease.

Much more research is needed before any conclusions can be drawn. This study was conducted at Vrije University in Amsterdam. It is published in the Lancet Medical Journal.

  • Heart Risk for Schizophrenia Patients 

Researchers have uncovered what may be a heart risk in patients with Schizophrenia.  A study in the British Medical Journal finds patients with Schizophrenia who take anti-psychotic drugs are more likely to suffer a Heart Attack than those without the illness. Researchers surveyed heart health histories in patients from three U.S. Medicaid programs.

Researchers say there is no clear explanation for the increased heart risk found in Schizophrenic patients and they still don't know if it's the disease or the drugs that play a key role in increased heart risk. 

They did conclude that one drug, Thioridazine, in high doses may affect the heart and say it should be given in the lowest dose when possible. They also compared the heart risk of different anti-psychotic drugs (Thioridazine, Haloperidol, Risperidone, and Clozapine). Overall, the risk with Thioridazine was no worse than that with Haloperidol. Thioridazine may carry a greater risk than Haloperidol at high doses, although this finding could be due to chance, say the authors.

The research was conducted by Sean Hennessy, Assistant Professor, Center for Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and is printed in the British Medical Journal.

  • Vitaball Vitamin Gum

A novel approach to vitamins might have your kids asking for more. Amerifit Nutrition has come out with a chewable vitamin gumball. It's called Vitaball and while kids munch away they're receiving 100% of the recommended daily allowance of 11 essential vitamins. Vitaball is primarily deseigned for kids 8 to 13 who've outgrown chewable cartoon vitamins but aren't ready to swallow a pill.

Vitaball Vitamins are individually wrapped and sold in canisters for under $8. For more information ( click here).

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