Category Archives: News

More proof that eating natural is best | Experts back Contadors claim of bad meat

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News | Experts back Contadors claim of bad meat | Universal Sports.

Experts back Contador’s claim of bad meat

Say drug is commonly given to animals
Posted: Sep 30, 11:53a ET | Updated: Sep 30, 2:37p ET

LONDON (AP) — Tour de France champion Alberto Contador’s claim that the steak he ate is to blame for his positive doping test is plausible, experts say, since the drug he’s accused of taking is sometimes illegally given to beef cattle.

The drug clenbuterol is often used to speed up growth and increase muscle mass in animals, including chickens, cattle and pigs. And it’s typically been used by people for bodybuilding.

Contador has been provisionally suspended after the International Cycling Union said a “small concentration” of clenbuterol was found in his urine sample on July 21 during the Tour de France, which the Spanish rider won for a third time.

Contador blamed the finding on “food contamination,” saying he ate beef brought from Spain to France on a rest day.

Doctors said it would have been nearly impossible for Contador to have received any performance boost from eating clenbuterol-spiked meat.

“The amounts (of clenbuterol he consumed) would be incredibly small unless you were eating vast quantities of meat,” said Dr. Andrew Franklyn-Miller, a sports medicine expert at the Centre for Human Performance in London and a team doctor for Britain’s rowing team.

“It’s very unlikely that the night before a stage in the mountains, anyone would be eating three or four steaks,” said Franklyn-Miller, who said cyclists typically eat carbohydrates before a race because they are easier to digest.

Michael Audran, a doping expert who works closely with the World Anti-Doping Agency, said the amount of clenbuterol found in Contador’s samples was so small it is unlikely the cyclist was abusing the drug. He said the contamination theory is the only possible explanation for the positive result.

Other experts said the doping tests need to be refined to include a threshold amount for clenbuterol, not simply whether or not the drug is present.

Spain has had several past reports of health problems linked to clenbuterol after people ate beef and veal containing it. In the 1990s, more than 100 people had symptoms including increased heart rate, muscle tremors, nausea, headaches, and anxiety blamed on the drug.

The drug is only legal in Europe for animals that aren’t intended for human consumption, but experts say clenbuterol is sometimes found illegally in animal feed to produce more lean meat. It’s usually stored in the animals’ liver or muscle tissue.

Clenbuterol has been used for years by bodybuilders to increase their muscle mass and reduce fat. The drug also increases the body’s aerobic capacity by making more oxygen available for muscles to work. Clenbuterol is also thought to help the body burn more fat, giving athletes a longer energy supply. Its short-term effects are similar to amphetamine drugs.

Athletes who use it can also suffer from side effects such as weight gain, loss of bone density and organ damage.

In some countries, clenbuterol is used to treat breathing disorders like asthma by relaxing the muscles in the airways, but it is not approved for use in humans in the United States and most of Europe.

Contador is not the only athlete to blame meat for a positive clenbuterol test. Last week, German table tennis player Dimitrij Ovtcharov used the same defense after testing positive for the drug, saying he ate meat loaded with clenbuterol during a tournament in China.

In Contador’s case, “the quantity is the key to judging” whether it was a case of possible doping or consuming the drug by eating meat, said Giuseppe Banfi, a sports biochemistry expert at the University of Milan. “We don’t have the proper parameters right now to know if this was illicit use.”

He said that if Contador was doping with clenbuterol, authorities likely would have found more than one positive test result to show systemic drug abuse.

“WADA needs to set a detection limit (for clenbuterol), that is fundamental to defining if it is illicit use or an accidental finding,” Banfi said.

Clenbuterol remains in the body for more than a day after it is ingested. The drug can be detected via hair and urine analysis.

Medical News: Pesticides Linked to ADHD in Kids – in Public Health & Policy, Environmental Health from MedPage Today

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Pesticides Linked to ADHD in Kids

By Todd Neale, Staff Writer, MedPage Today

Published: May 17, 2010

Reviewed by Zalman S. Agus, MD; Emeritus Professor

University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and

Dorothy Caputo, MA, RN, BC-ADM, CDE, Nurse Planner

Children with greater exposure to organophosphate pesticides appear to have an increased risk of developing attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), a cross-sectional study showed.

A 10-fold increase in the concentration of the most common dialkyl phosphate metabolites — a measure of organophosphate exposure — was associated with a 1.55-fold increase in the odds of having ADHD (OR 1.55, 95% CI 1.14 to 2.10), according to Maryse Bouchard, PhD, of the University of Montreal, and colleagues.

The relationship was not explained by gender, age, race/ethnicity, poverty to income ratio, fasting duration, or urinary creatinine concentration, the researchers reported in the June issue of Pediatrics.

“These findings support the hypothesis that organophosphate exposure, at levels common among U.S. children, may contribute to ADHD prevalence,” they wrote. Read More »

Op-Ed Columnist – The Spread of Superbugs – NYTimes.com

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OP-ED COLUMNIST

The Spread of Superbugs

By NICHOLAS D. KRISTOF

Published: March 6, 2010

Until three months ago, Thomas M. Dukes was a vigorous, healthy executive at a California plastics company. Then, over the course of a few days in December as he was planning his Christmas shopping, E. coli bacteria ravaged his body and tore his life apart.

Mr. Dukes is a reminder that as long as we’re examining our health care system, we need to scrutinize more than insurance companies. We also need to curb the way modern agribusiness madly overuses antibiotics, leaving them ineffective for sick humans.

Antibacterial drugs were revolutionary when they were introduced in the United States in 1936, virtually eliminating diseases like tuberculosis here and making surgery and childbirth far safer. But now we’re seeing increasing numbers of superbugs that survive antibiotics. One of the best-known — MRSA, a kind of staph infection — kills about 18,000 Americans annually. That’s more than die of AIDS.

Mr. Dukes, 52, picked up a kind of bacteria called ESBL-producing E. coli. While it’s conceivable that he touched a contaminated surface, a likely scenario is that he ate tainted meat, said Dr. Brad Spellberg, an infectious-diseases specialist and the author of “Rising Plague,” a book about antibiotic resistance.

Vegetarians are also vulnerable to antibiotic resistance nurtured in hog barns. Microbes swap genes, so antibiotic resistance developed in pigs can jump to microbes that infect humans in hospitals, locker rooms, schools or homes.

Routine use of antibiotics to raise livestock is widely seen as a major reason for the rise of superbugs. But Congress and the Obama administration have refused to curb agriculture’s addiction to antibiotics, apparently because of the power of the agribusiness lobby. Read More »

FDA mulling restrictions on livestock antibiotics | Des Moines Register Staff Blogs

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Let your voices be heard!!!  The following is an article about the possible limits on antibiotics in livestock.  Contact your representatives and senators and let them know you want antibiotics banned.  Everyone is worried about the all mighty dollar instead of our health and well being.

FDA mulling restrictions on livestock antibiotics

BLOG POST BY PHILIP BRASHER • PBRASHER@DMREG.COM • MARCH 10, 2010

The head of the Food and Drug Administration says the agency is continuing to look at possible restrictions on the use of antibiotics in livestock but pledged to consult with producers. Margaret Hamburg told a House subcommittee today that antibiotic resistance is one of the nation’s “foremost public health concerns” and there are clear linkages between the problem and the use of the drugs in farm animals.

“We are working closely with industry, listening to their concerns,” Hamburg said in response to a question from Rep. Tom Latham, R-Ia. “We are not going to move forward and institute a policy that we have not been able to base on sound science and evidence.”

She said the agency was looking at “regulatory pathways” to restrict animal antibiotic use but did not elaborate.

Last summer, an FDA official surprised the industry by calling for ending the use of antibiotics for growth promotion in livestock and requiring veterinary approval for all other uses of the drugs. Legislation pending in the House would ban the use of antibiotics for promoting growth in livestock.

“The use of antibiotics for growth promotion alone really needs to be scrutinized very, very closely,” Hamburg said. Read More »

American Beef: Why is it Banned in Europe?

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HORMONES IN MEAT Fact Sheet

Most U. S. beef cattle are implanted with synthetic hormones in feedlots prior to slaughter.   On January 1, 1989 the European Economic Community (EEC) placed a ban on hormone-treated U. S. meat, preventing U. S. meat products from being sold in any European nations. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has challenged the ban and accused the EEC of unfair trade practices, but the action of European governments raises some important questions about American meat.

Q. Why did the Europeans (EEC) place a ban on hormone-raised meat?

A. The European Economic Community banned hormone-raised meat because of questions on the dangers of meat that has been treated with synthetic sex hormones. European consumers pressured the EEC to take this action to protect their health.

More than a decade ago, Roy Hertz, then director of endocrinology at the National Cancer Institute and a leading authority on hormonal cancers, warned of the carcinogenic risks of estrogenic additives which can cause imbalances and increases in natural hormone levels. Hertz warned against the uncontrolled use of these potent carcinogens. No dietary levels of hormones are safe and a dime-sized piece of meat contains-billions of millions of molecules.

Breast cancer has been raised as a primary concern in light of associations between breast cancer and oral contraceptives, whose estrogen dosage is known and controlled. The risk of breast and other cancers only increases with the uncontrolled use of hormones in meat. Read More »