HealthWise at 5 From 6.21 - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

6/21/04

HealthWise at 5 From 6.21

  • Pregnancy Supplement

Scientists have uncovered evidence that certain vitamins may help prevent some of the damage caused by drinking alcohol during pregnancy. The study in mice suggests that antioxidants may help reduce the risk of limb deformities linked to fetal alcohol exposure. There was a 36% reduction in deformities in the alcohol exposed embryos that were treated with the antioxidants compared to those that didn't get the vitamin. They note that while avoiding alcohol during pregnancy is the best advice a woman can follow, anti-oxidants may play a role in treating women who are coping with alcohol addiction during pregnancy. The study was conducted at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

  • Teen Smoking

They may not listen when you tell them to clean their rooms, but a new report finds America's teens are getting the message about the dangers of smoking. The study of high school students by the Centers for Disease Control finds teen smoking rates have decreased by 40% since the early 1990's. CDC researchers say the biggest drop in the number of teen smokers came between 1997 and 2003, when the rate fell from 36% to 21%. In addition, the number of teens who said they've tried smoking went down by 12%. The CDC says education efforts and an increase in cigarette prices may play a role.

  • Power Foods

If you're trying to eat healthy, you'll want to make sure beans, blueberries and artichokes are on your shopping list. A new USDA study finds these items top the list of foods containing high levels of disease fighting antioxidants. Other power foods include cranberries, russet potatoes, pecans and even spices, like cinnamon, cloves and oregano.

The study marks the first comprehensive listing of antioxidants in foods and spices. Researchers say the findings drive home the disease fighting power of fruits and vegetables, and the USDA will add the antioxidant info to it's food nutrition database over the next few months. Among vegetables, beans, artichokes and russet potatoes had the highest antioxidant content. Among fruits, blueberries, cranberries and blackberries ranked highest. The top nuts were pecans, walnuts and hazelnuts. Top spices were cloves, cinnamon and oregano. Antioxidants are believed to fight problems like heart disease by helping destroy disease-causing free radicals.

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