What’s Going On? May 3-7

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Reuters published a study that said a couple cups of coffee may help heart patients. This is wonderful news for us coffee fiends; a study consisting of 374 patients who had a previously had a heart attack found those with normal blood pressure drinking one or two coffees a day were 88 percent less likely than non-coffee drinkers to develop a condition in which the heart fails to pump effectively.

Reuters published a study that said a couple cups of coffee may help heart patients. This is wonderful news for us coffee fiends; a study consisting of 374 patients who had a previously had a heart attack found those with normal blood pressure drinking one or two coffees a day were 88 percent less likely than non-coffee drinkers to develop a condition in which the heart fails to pump effectively.

The results surprised researches, since coffee is known to cause heart palpitations. Coffee always seems to be such a dichotomous beverage. Coffee is loaded with anti-oxidants and other bioactive chemicals, but other studies have implicated it in heart palpitations, tremors and even cancer. Coffee is a legume, and is therefore allowed on Kaufmann 2. I’ve talked to Doug many times about coffee consumption – I think he would agree that if you are on a Kaufmann 2 diet, coffee in moderation is fine. I think if researchers looked the data closer, they might be implicating those corn syrup, preservative laden coffee sweeteners and “creamers” many people use in their morning joe. 

Scientists are also puzzled by a nearly 70% increase in stomach cancer in young white adults over the past 3 decades. While the risk is still very low, the researchers are still baffled by the increase. Back from when I used to edit the Know The Cause TV show, I remember something Doug would always say. “Where was this 30, 40, 50 years ago?” I think the questions stands for this study; If cancer is the result of something, and that result has changed over time, what cause has changed over time? I always think about environmental factors first (i.e., fungus, mycotoxins, etc). Is it because young white people have drank more corn-sweetened beverages? Taken more antibiotics? I think another interesting point made in the article is the link they draw between H. Pylori and stomach cancer. So a pathogen can cause cancer? It is also believed that a “virus” causes cervical cancer in women (but thank God we have a vaccine!). It is interesting to watch the paradigm shift in medicine from cancer being this spontaneous, unpredictable disease to a disease with causes, be they environmental or pathogenic (or fungal!).

Schools are finally starting to work towards having healthier lunches for their students. I’m still not far enough removed from high school to forget friends holding up school cafeteria bought pizza and watching a weird neon-orange grease ooze off of it. In light of the obesity epidemic, I think it is about time. Schools in California and Oregon are beginning to work with local farmers in order to get fresh produce delivered to schools at competitive rates. While they are far from promoting a Kaufmann 1 diet in schools, this is definitely a step in the right direction. 

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