Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Paracetamol best for mild pain: "Old-fashioned paracetamol is more effective for treating ongoing back pain and arthritis aches than many newer painkillers, health professionals say. The National Prescribing Service (NPS) has released advice to doctors based on new research showing the benefits of paracetamol. Professor Milton Cohen, from Sydney's St Vincents Clinical School, said recent studies confirmed that paracetamol had very few side effects and was the best choice for mild-to-moderate pain relief. The old-fashioned drugs were available in a slower release formula suitable for people with persistent pain and had a better safety profile than many newer painkillers, Prof Milton said. "Some of the newer analgesics have been shown to have harmful reactions in people with stomach and heart problems as well as interactions with other drugs, so professional advice is recommended for safety as well as pain relief," he said"

We can't win: "There are now more overweight people across the world than hungry ones, according to experts. US professor Barry Popkin said all countries - both rich and poor - had failed to address the obesity boom. He told the International Association of Agricultural Economists the number of overweight people had topped 1bn, compared to 800m undernourished. Speaking at an Australian conference, he said changing diets and people doing less physical exercise was the cause. Professor Popkin, from the University of North Carolina, said that the change had happened quickly as obesity was rapidly spreading, while hunger was slowly declining among the world's 6.5bn population. The biggest increases are being seen in parts of Asia with certain populations more susceptible than others. He told the conference at the Gold Coast convention centre near Brisbane: "Obesity is the norm globally and under nutrition, while still important in a few countries and in targeted populations in many others, is no longer the dominant disease." [The usual medicalization of a normal condition]

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