Wednesday 18 July 2012

FYI; Coffee is good for you and have a postive effect on Alzheimer

A recent study was carried out by the National institutes of Health/American Association of Retired Persons  They enrolled more than 400,000 participants from age 51 to over 70 years, and more than 52,000 deaths were accrued from the National Death Index. It included participants from 6 states plus Atlanta and Detroit. 
The investigators looked at people who drank no coffee, less than 1 cup, 2-3 cups, 4-5 cups, or more than 6 cups, and then they tallied the rates of deaths in people with heart disease, stroke, diabetes, respiratory disease, cancer, and the other usual conditions you look at.

Then they adjusted for other factors, such as white meat intake, red meat intake, total calories, smoking, and the kind of coffee consumed.  When the data were adjusted for those other factors, the clear offender was cigarette smoking and,  in fact, the more coffee you drank, it seemed, the lower the risk for all of these other conditions.

Of interest, all of the people who drank more than 6 cups of coffee a day had less college education, ate more red meat and less white meat, ate fewer fruits and vegetables, and had less vitamin supplementation and other supplements -- all the things we think aren't good for us.
Another recent report says that coffee may actually delay or possibly prevent Alzheimer disease. We do not know whether tea would do this, we do not know whether other caffeinated beverages would, or whether it is an effect of caffeine. There are many, many elements in coffee, including antioxidants and other components, that could be responsible for this benefit.

Thursday 5 July 2012

Why to coloured taping

Why are athletes wearing coloured tape?

Italian striker Mario Balotelli Mario Balotelli revealed his stripes (and got a yellow card) when he took off his shirt during Euro 2012


Why are athletes wearing coloured tape?

In the Euro 2012 Championship, Italian striker Mario Balotelli was sporting three tramlines of blue sticky tape on his back.

And at Wimbledon, Serbian tennis player Novak Djokovic has had his elbow patched up with the same stuff.

So what's behind this latest sporting fad?

The Japanese makers of Kinesio tape say it gives players an edge by mending injuries.
Sticking plaster?
Although it might seem like a new idea, the tape has been around since the 1970s.

Dr Kenzo Kase says he came up with the design because he found standard taping techniques, like conventional strapping, too restrictive for his patients.

Although standard strapping provides muscle and joint support, it limits movement and, according to Dr Kase, gets in the way of the healing process by restricting the flow of inflammatory fluids below the skin.

Kinesio tape is different, he says, because it lifts the skin to assist this lymphatic flow, which, in turn, reduces pain and swelling.

However, Dr Kase admits there have been to prove these scientific claims.

Dr Kase says people have been using his tape with success for more than 30 years. But he recognises that only solid scientific evidence can silence critics.

"We have many people researching but the society of Kinesio taping therapy itself - the International Kinesio Taping Association - is only five years old. We need more evidence. We do not have research reports. Part of the reason people are using Kinesio tape is to find the science."

Novak Djokovic Novak Djokovic has been wearing the tape during his Wimbledon matches

Another element to consider is the power of persuasion or "placebo effect" - if you believe something will work then you will see results.

John Brewer, a sports professor at the University of Bedfordshire, said: "Personally, I think it is more of a placebo effect. There is no firm scientific data to show that it has an impact on performance or prevents injuries.

"My concern is that there is little that you can put on the skin that will have a real benefit for the muscles that lie deep beneath.

"The power and stress going through the joints is immense.

"But, saying that, I can't see it would cause any real problem, other than making you lose a few hairs."

In theory, anything that can lessen the oscillations or vibrations that go through the muscle when you are doing intense sport will be beneficial, he said.

Phil Newton, a physiotherapist at Lilleshall, one of the UK's National Sports Centres, said: "It's a multimillion-pound business, yet there's no evidence for it. There's a whole host of companies making this tape now.

"A lot of medical practitioners do use it.

"It is different to the various types of tape that physios have been using for donkey's years to strap sprained ankles and so on.

"This is a relatively new type of tape that is thin and light weight. The idea behind it is fascial unloading - reducing pressure in the tissue below the skin."

Dr Newton remains dubious. "Looking at the tensile strength of the tape I don't see how it could do it unless it is down to stimulating the senses. The power of placebo is very strong and shouldn't be underestimated."

He predicts the Olympics will be awash with the stuff. "It'll be a show of multicoloured tape.

"We'll probably see athletes in the Olympics sporting a few union jacks made out of it," he said.

Dr Kase certainly hopes so.

He said: "Olympians are very top athletes. Top athletes are very different from regular athletes. They are hypersensitive and they worry. My tape will give lots of comfort to them. This is not drugs."

Chronic pain

Physios welcome pain report’s goals

5 July 2012
People with chronic pain need rapid access to treatment and support, says the final report of the English Pain Summit, which was launched yesterday in the House of Commons.
The report, Putting Pain on the Agenda, identifies four key priorities for action that will improve the quality of life of those who live with pain.
These include
  • the development of clear national standards for clinical practise and education
  • the need to raise public awareness of pain
  • the development of comprehensive guidance for commissioners
  • a national strategy to cope with the problem.
Healthcare professionals were joined by patients and parliamentarians at the launch of the report - the findings of which are based on the first ever English Pain Summit which took place in November 2011.
Physiotherapist Kate Jolly, who is studying an MSc in "pain, Science and Society" and is also involved in the all party parliamentary chronic pain group, welcomed the report’s recommendations.
‘Physiotherapists are ideally placed to embrace this report as our distinctive qualities of listening and taking time to understand patients enables us to give the necessary empowerment required to fulfill these goals,’ she said.
‘This is not exclusive to the field of musculoskeletal pain but spans our diverse skills in cancer pain, headaches, abdominal syndromes such as IBS and neurology, to name but a few.’