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Suzanne Hendrich, an Iowa State University professor in food science and human nutrition, led a study that examined the effects of flaxseed lignan in 90 people diagnosed with high cholesterol. The results showed that consuming at least 150 milligrams of flaxseed lignans per day (about three tablespoons) decreased cholesterol in men, but not women, by just under 10 percent over the three months that they were given the flaxseed.
While Hendrich admits that's considerably less than the expected outcome from cholesterol-lowering drugs — approximately 10 to20 per cent for three months, depending on the individual — it’s still enough to make flaxseed a more natural option for some men.
“Because there are people who can’t take something like Lipitor, this could at least give you some of that cholesterol-lowering benefit,” Hendrich said. “The other thing is, there are certainly some people who would prefer to not use a drug, but rather use foods to try to maintain their health. So this potentially would be something to consider.”
Hendrich developed the study with ISU master’s student Kai Ling Kong and doctoral graduates Zhong Ye, Xianai Wu, and Sun-Ok Lee to determine whether the main lignan in flaxseed, secoisolariciresinol diglucoside, could lower cholesterol.

Cheering at sports events could cost you your voice
Screaming while cheering for your favourite side during sport events can cause damage to vocal cords, health experts have warned.
Lee M Akst, director of the Johns Hopkins Voice Centre, said talking too much over the phone could also have adverse effects.
Akst said: “Yelling at basketball and baseball games, talking too much on your cellphone, and other forms of overuse can damage your voice.”
“Red flags for an over-used voice are frequent hoarseness, a sense of strain while talking, or discomfort while speaking.”
“If hoarseness lasts for more than two weeks or is accompanied by ear pain, difficulty breathing, or difficulty swallowing, it may indicate a potentially serious vocal cord condition. If these symptoms occur, then you should be evaluated by an ear-nose-throat specialist as quickly as possible.”
According to the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery (AAO-HNS), almost three of every 10 people have experienced voice problems.
People who use their voices a lot as part of their professional responsibilities such as singers, coaches, teachers, broadcast journalists, clergy, attorneys, primarily suffer from these problems.

Pneumonia leading cause of child death in China
A new study claims that pneumonia is the leading cause of death amongst Chinese children. The condition accounts for 17 per cent of deaths in under-5s, according to the study.
But the number of children in China who die before reaching the age of five has dropped by 70 per cent since 1990 — from 6.5 per cent of live births to 1.9 per cent.
Harry Campbell, University of Edinburgh, said: “Within international health community, China has been a ‘black box’ for the past several decades regarding the information on health problems of its large population, particularly for children and infants. We welcome their immense efforts in recent years to digitalise their health research reports produced during the 20th century by Chinese researchers. Now health research conducted in China has been of a very high quality. Our study also brings attention to some neglected causes of child death, such as accidents and congenital abnormalities, on which we had hardly any information from other low and middle income countries.”

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