What's the buzz

Diet supplements cause chest lumps

The number of men developing non-cancerous chest lumps after taking body building supplements is reaching new heights, according to surgeons in Swansea.

Consultant Breast Surgeon Nader Khonji explained that the growth, known as gynaecomastia, was normally observed in adolescent males or people taking prescribed medication.

Khonji said: “I think a lot of this is to do with the increased awareness of body image amongst men”. “This is leading them to go down the road of weight training and taking supplement and anabolic steroids, which ironically then cause them to develop the breast tissue.”

The expert further said that though the gynaecomastia itself is not dangerous, lumps always need to be checked by doctors.

He said: “In terms of breast tissue — it can be a sign of more harmful underlying conditions like testicular cancer, so it is important that all these patients are assessed.”

High salt intake linked to cardiovascular disease risk

A new study shows that high salt intake is linked to significantly greater risk of both stroke and cardiovascular disease. The association between high salt intake and high blood pressure is well established, and it has been suggested that a population-wide reduction in dietary salt intake has the potential to substantially reduce the levels of cardiovascular disease. The WHO recommended level of salt consumption is 5g per day at the population level.

Pasquale Strazzullo, University of Naples, and Francesco Cappuccio, University of Warwick, analysed the results of 13 published studies involving over 1,70,000 people that directly assessed the relationship between levels of habitual salt intake and rates of stroke and cardiovascular disease. The analysis shows that a difference of 5g a day in habitual salt intake is associated with a 23 per cent difference in the rate of stroke and a 17 per cent difference in the rate of total cardiovascular disease.

Call for BPA baby bottle ban after breast cancer link

British campaigners have called upon to put a ban on baby bottles containing controversial chemical Bisphenol A, commonly known as BPA.

The National Childbirth Trust says there is ‘compelling’ evidence linking BPA to breast cancer and other conditions.

The chemical is widely used in plastics and is commonly found in food and drink containers. The US has removed BPA from their products in March due to consumer pressure.

Canada has also banned products containing the chemical.

However, scientists have been divided on whether BPA is a health hazard.
The Food Standards Agency said it had no plans to act.

“The Food Standards Agency, working closely with the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), and the European Commission have looked into the potential risks from BPA and found that exposure of UK consumers to BPA from all sources, including food contact materials, was well below levels considered harmful,” said a spokesman.

Successful weight control strategies for teens

Researchers have identified successful weight control strategies for teens that could help influence interventions for obesity in youth.

Kerri Boutelle and co-authors examined differences in weight control behaviours, including dietary intake and physical activity, comparing overweight adolescents who lost weight and those who did not.

Experts divided weight control strategies into four categories, namely, Healthy Weight Control behaviours, Unhealthy Weight Control behaviours, Extreme Dietary Changes and Structured behaviours.

The study found that the successful adolescents reported increased exercise levels, drinking less soda, walking more/climbing stairs and self-weighing.

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