World of Medicine

Reader's Digest (Canada) - - World of Medicine - BY SAMAN­THA RIDEOUT

Celiac Pa­tients Un­wit­tingly Con­sum­ing Gluten

Man­ag­ing celiac dis­ease usu­ally re­quires in­gest­ing 10 mil­ligrams or less of gluten per day, but this is eas­ier said than done, ac­cord­ing to a study from the Amer­i­can Jour­nal of Clin­i­cal Nu­tri­tion. The stool and urine of peo­ple try­ing to fol­low a gluten-free diet re­vealed that they were be­ing ex­posed to an es­ti­mated av­er­age of 150 to 400 mil­ligrams per day. Lesser-known sources in­clude cer­tain med­i­ca­tions, lip­sticks, sauces and vi­ta­mins. Celiac pa­tients who are ex­pe­ri­enc­ing symp­toms should re-ex­am­ine their habits with the ad­vice of a di­eti­cian or doc­tor.

New Mi­graine Pre­ven­tion Treat­ment Avail­able

The first med­i­ca­tion de­vel­oped specif­i­cally to pre­vent mi­graines— rather than re­pur­posed from treat­ments for other kinds of con­di­tions—has been ap­proved in Eu­rope. Erenumab (brand name Ai­movig) is the first in a class of drugs that will tackle the prob­lem by block­ing a par­tic­u­lar re­cep­tor that trans­mits mi­graine pain. Taken as a monthly home in­jec­tion, it has been shown to re­duce the fre­quency of mi­graines by more than 50 per cent for over half of pa­tients, and even elim­i­nate them for some. The short­term side ef­fects seem to be in­fre­quent and mild (e.g., in­jec­tion pain, pos­si­ble nasal in­fec­tions), although, as with any new drug, lit­tle is known about the longer-term ef­fects.

Or­anges Ward Off Mac­u­lar De­gen­er­a­tion

Reg­u­lar en­joy­ment of or­anges may help pre­vent mac­u­lar de­gen­er­a­tion, a ma­jor cause of age-re­lated vi­sion loss. An ob­ser­va­tional study of more than 2,000 se­niors, con­ducted from the West­mead In­sti­tute for Med­i­cal Re­search in Aus­tralia, cal­cu­lated a 60 per cent re­duced risk in sub­jects who tended to eat at least one or­ange daily. In ad­di­tion to the vi­ta­min C present, flavonoids might also ex­plain the ef­fect, since these com­pounds pre­vent ox­ida­tive stress and re­duce in­flam­ma­tion in the body.

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