A recent report claims people who boosted their coffee intake by “moderate to large” doses in a US-based study had a lower risk for adult-onset diabetes than those with stable consumption. Reports linking certain food and disease incidence and outcome are not uncommon. It should be noted that these studies merely report an association between the food and the disease, and do not indicate a cause and effect between consumption of the food and disease itself. To illustrate with an example, it might be that people who drinks more coffee, for some reasons coincidentally or otherwise, might just happened to have other confounding factors that reduced the risk of diabetes. These studies will not always be able to account for these ‘confounders’ as thoroughly. Therefore, reports linking certain food with risk of developing a disease should always be interpreted cautiously. When it comes to diet, moderation is always the key. And diet itself should always be in tandem with physical activity, regular heath screening and prompt medical attention in the event of disease onset, in order to ensure the best outcome.
A five-year-old boy whose chronic diabetes meant he had never spoken said his first words just days after starting a ‘miracle’ treatment. Jack Neighbour suffered from health complications related to neonatal diabetes and it meant he could only communicate with his family through picture cards. But just six weeks after a genetic test by a team at the University of Exeter he switched from insulin injections to tablets. While the sensational headlines here is certainly uplifting, the ‘miracle’ treatment here is probably no more than the common oral diabetic agents, likely sulphonyureas here, that are already widely used for many diabetics for a long time.
Neonatal diabetes is a form of diabetes occurring within 6 months of birth, and are commonly wrongly classified as type 1 diabetes (insulin dependent diabetes). Patients are often put on insulin injections from a tender age, often with unsatisfactory control. An astute endocrinologist will be able to easily differentiate this form of diabetes from type 1, insulin requiring diabetes. A genetic test, which is widely available nowadays can detect the presence of a mutation causing neonatal diabetes. With genetic testing result, and the presence of clinical features well supporting a diagnosis of neonatal diabetes, there is a good chance that patients can be successfully converted from insulin treatment to oral agents, often with marked improvement in their sugar control and quality of life.
The story here underscore the importance of seeking proper treatment for your diabetes, and consulting an endocrinologist promptly when there are unusual features in your diabetes that does not commensurate with the garden variety diabetes which are ubiquitous nowadays.
Spending too much time sitting in front of screens may be linked to poorer bone health in teen boys, according to a new study from Norway. The findings clearly show that sedentary lifestyle during adolescence can impact on bone mineral density and thus compromise the acquisition of peak bone mass. This can have a negative impact in terms of osteoporosis and fracture risk later in life. The skeleton grows from birth to the end of the teen years and bones reach their maximum strength and size in early adulthood. Nutrition and physical activity are major factors in bone growth. Therefore, the findings here that a sedentary lifestyle may cast a negative impact on bone health in adolescents is not surprising.
Adolescent should be encouraged to live a more active lifestyle and embrace outdoor activities more as the benefits are likely to be more far ranging than what we thought.
About one in five men older than 50 will suffer a fracture due to osteoporosis, but levels of awareness about osteoporosis risk and bone health in males are unfortunately extremely low.