Still no confirmation on Zika-related microcephaly

DE LA HAYE... the validating
test result should be coming from Trinidad.

THE country is still awaiting confirmation as to whether or not the case of microcephaly identified in a baby born at the Victoria Jubilee Hospital in Kingston, last month, is linked to the Zika virus (ZikV). Chief medical officer (CMO) in the Ministry of Health, Dr Winston De La Haye, has reiterat ... Read More

Ben Carson greets his granddaughter Tesora Carson prior to testifying during his confirmation hearing for Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) before the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, on January 12, 2017 (Photo: AFP) Grandparents who help care for children live longer
WE know that eating right and exercising for 30 minutes each day, consistently, can help us to live ... Read More

Walking on the ground in areas where animals frequent may be a source of parasites. (Photo: AFP) Barefoot walking...The many benefits
IN today’s modern world, most of us wear some kind of footwear without even giving it a second ... Read More

Using fluoride toothpaste and drinking fluoridated water can help protect teeth from decay. (Photo: AP) Seal out tooth decay
DENTAL sealants are plastic coatings that are usually placed on the chewing (occlusal) surface of th ... Read More

Sugar-free, drinks no better for healthy weight

Sunday, January 15, 2017    

There is no solid evidence to support the claims that artificially sweetened beverages are any better for health or prevent obesity and obesity-related diseases such as type 2 diabetes. (Photo: AFP)

SUGAR-FREE and “diet” drinks are often seen as the healthier option, but researchers from Imperial College London have argued that they are no more helpful for maintaining a healthy weight than their full-sugar versions. In a commentary on current research and policy into sweetened drinks, academics from Imperial College London and two Brazilian universities — University of Sao Paulo and Federal University of Pelotas — argued that sugar-free versions of drinks may be no ... Read More

Pollution ages your skin

Sunday, January 15, 2017    

Skin-ageing atmospheric pressure, such as car exhaust, is inescapable. (Photo: AP)

Our world is getting increasingly dirty. Skin-ageing atmospheric stressors are everywhere — from pollution, exhaust fumes and industrial smoke, to ozone, extreme weather and free radicals. Scientists now say that day-in, day-out exposure to these atmospheric stressors is ageing our skin. In fact, researchers predict that pollution protection will have an impact on skincare that is just as great as ultraviolet (UV) protection, and will become a key driver in the market as consumer conscio ... Read More

Failing memory

Dr Ashish Sarangi | Sunday, January 15, 2017    

Although memory impairment is usually associated with older age, there are causes which may present earlier.Photo: AFP

FAMOUS French author Jules Renard once said: “It’s not how old you are but how you are old”. Old age marked with memory impairment and behavioural changes are the sad reality for a growing number of our elderly population. In fact, according to the World Health Organization, this is predicted to get even worse as the number of elderly people continue to grow due to increased life expectancy. While it is true that many of us experience issues with our memory, manifested often ... Read More

Cake and christmastime struggles #Journeyof100pounds

BY SELENA DELEON | Sunday, January 15, 2017    

Gareth Taylor is trying to lose 100 pounds in six months. Track his #Journeyof100pounds. (Photo: Bryan Cummings)

BEING a chef, the Christmas period was tough for Gareth Taylor. Christmastime calls for Christmas cake and since Gareth runs a second business as a supplier of these very cakes, he had to taste the product to ensure quality for his customers, This was his biggest challenge since his last weigh-in and since the Jamaica Observer first shared his story. Being a full-time chef and caterer, with the demands of the season, his time has been very limited and his eating schedule was thrown off. Gare ... Read More

Readers weigh in... #Journeyof100pounds

Sunday, January 15, 2017    

Gareth Taylor is trying to lose 100 pounds in six months. Track his #Journeyof100pounds. (Photo: Bryan Cummings)

Check out what some readers had to say to Gareth Taylor as he continues on his #Journeyof100pounds: PhilT McNasty: You’ll pull through, but I encourage you to change jobs. The temptation lingers in the aroma. Janaa Pickford: Gareth you can do this. Set realistic goals and expectations. Keep in mind that your health is at stake if you do not shed excess pounds. No white bread, rice, or dumplings for now. Juice once a week is okay. I personally am awaiting better news in the months ahead ... Read More

Testing for coronary artery disease — part 1

Dr Claudine Lewis | Sunday, January 15, 2017    

Typically, a stress test is used to diagnose coronary artery disease as well as some heart rhythm problems. (Photo: AP)

TO review where we left off last week, your doctor may suspect you have coronary disease if you have any of the following scenarios: 1. No chest pain, but multiple coronary artery disease risk factors such as high cholesterol, diabetes, hypertension, cigarette smoking, strong family history; 2. Stable Angina — chest pain only with activity such as walking, running, swimming; 3. Chest pain at rest, while lying or sitting down. After your doctor spends the time going through your symptom ... Read More

Laughter is the best medicine

Sunday, January 08, 2017    

First Lady Michelle Obama laughs as she speaks at the 2017 School Counselor of the Year ceremony in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Friday, January 6, 2017. (Photo: AP)

FEELING out of sorts? Try laughing! Some researchers think that laughter may just be the best medicine, helping us feel better and putting that spring back in our step. Laughter is a complex human behaviour and is ubiquitous among humans. It is universally recognised across cultures. There are different types of laughter. Some types of laughter enhance communication and contribute to good will and harmony, while others may be viewed as divisive and anti-social. The most widely recognised of a ... Read More

Signs you may have blocked arteries

Dr Claudine Lewis | Sunday, January 08, 2017    

Blocked arteries may cause no symptoms, chest pain with activity or chest pain while doing nothing.

A heart attack — known in medical jargon as a myocardial infarction, occurs when plaque that has been building up in your coronary arteries ruptures and a clot forms, leading to sudden blockage of blood flow to the heart muscle. In some cases, there is severe blockage of the arteries, which limits the blood flow during times of physical stress, such as running, brisk walks, swimming etc. In this case there is no plaque rupture, and this is called angina pectoris — for chest pain. ... Read More

Help your child fall asleep and stay asleep

Sunday, January 08, 2017    

Studies indicate that 15 to 20 per cent of one to three year olds continue to have nightwakings. (Photo: AP)

OVERALL, studies indicate that 15 to 20 per cent of one to three year olds continue to have night wakings. According to Stephanie Zandieh, director, Pediatric Sleep Disorders and Apnea Center, The Valley Hospital, “Inappropriate sleep associations are the primary cause of frequent night wakings. Sleep associations are those conditions that are habitually present at the time of sleep onset and in the presence of which the infant or child has learned to fall asleep. These same conditions ar ... Read More

Some medication can have oral side effects

by Dr Sharon Robinson | Sunday, January 08, 2017    

Many medications can affect oral health. (Photo: AP)

MANY medications have side effects. In fact, some can even affect oral health. In most cases, the oral side effects of medication resolve shortly after you stop taking the medication. However, the Jamaican Dental Association encourages patients to talk to their dentists about prescription and over-the-counter medications to learn more about how to limit the side effects on oral health. GUM TISSUE OVERGROWTH Gum tissue overgrowth, which is also referred to as “gingival hyperplasia” ... Read More



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