Australia

Coffee `as effective as performance enhancing drugs`

Coffee `as effective as performance enhancing drugs` Melbourne, Feb 5 : A cup of coffee can be as effective as some commonly used performance enhancing drugs, a new study has revealed.

Victoria University researchers Simon Outram and Bob Stewart examined existing research on the risks and benefits of stimulants being used by both sportsmen and people who wanted to boost their mental capabilities.

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World’s 1st test to analyse testosterone-diabetes link underway in Oz

World’s 1st test to analyse testosterone-diabetes link underway in Oz Melbourne, January 24 : The world's first study to test whether testosterone injections could help prevent type-2 diabetes in men will start in Australia this year.

Up to 1500 men across four Australian states will enrol in the Weight Watchers program and be given regular injections of either testosterone or a placebo.

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Vitamin B and folate supplements may help migraine sufferers

Vitamin B and folate supplements may help migraine sufferersMelbourne, January 19 : A team of Queensland researchers is close to developing a new treatment for severe headaches, which consists of vitamin B and folate supplements.

The remedy would help the 20 per cent of migraine sufferers whose condition is genetic, said Griffith University postdoctoral researcher Bridget Maher.

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Meth users likelier to suffer psychosis

Meth users likelier to suffer psychosisSydney, Jan 10 : Users of methamphetamine, or "ice", are five times likelier to suffer psychotic symptoms while taking the drug, according to a new study.

The study's lead author, Dr Rebecca McKetin, said that "there have always been questions about causality from those who say methamphetamine users aren't `turned mad' by the drug but have a pre-existing psychotic condition."

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Now, app that will encourage women to cut alcohol intake

Now, app that will encourage women to cut alcohol intakeMelbourne, Jan 10 : A new campaign launched in Scotland is encouraging women to reduce their drinking in 2013 by appealing to their vanity.

The initiative includes a smart phone app, dubbed the "Drinking Mirror," that shows people how they will age if they drink too much, News. com. au reported.

The Android app is free until the end of March or curious drinkers can access an online version at www. drinksmarter. org/web-version

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Easy way to protect heart - sip black tea

Easy way to protect heart - sip black teaSydney, Jan 9 : Quercetin, a flavonoid abundant in black tea, has shown promise in protecting blood vessels against oxidative damage and lowering cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk, said researchers who based their studies on mice.

Flavonoids are common plant pigment compounds that act as antioxidants, enhance the effects of vitamin C, and protect connective tissue around capillaries (blood vessels).

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Gene switch may hold key to fight breast cancer

Gene switch may hold key to fight breast cancerSydney, Jan 2 : Researchers have found a "genetic switch," that allows them to change breast cancer cells and make them more responsive to treatments like anti-oestrogen therapies, which could help open up new cures for the disease.

Researchers from the Garvan Institute of Medical Research in Sydney found the molecule, known as ELF5, which can turn genes on or off.

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Detox diets could be harmful for liver disease patients

Detox diets could be harmful for liver disease patientsMelbourne, December 21 : Detox diets may not help cleanse your system and they could even be harmful, especially for people with established liver disease, say experts.

About 70 per cent of more than 600 people surveyed by Hepatitis Australia thought liver cleansing diets or detox products, such as those available from pharmacies, were beneficial.

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Minimally invasive surgery could cure high BP

Minimally invasive surgery could cure high BPSydney, Dec 21 : Renal denervation, a minimally invasive surgery, can lower blood pressure (BP) that refuses to yield to drugs, according to the results obtained from a study that was conducted over a year-long period.

The findings build on results released in 2010. It showed that six months of treating the arteries around the kidneys with radio waves lowered drug-resistant high BP.

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Why you might have tummy troubles

Why you might have tummy troublesMelbourne, December 19 : The number of people suffering from stomach problems, be it tummy ache, bloating, wind or cramps, is on the rise, it has been revealed.

Dr Anton Emmanuel, consultant gastroenterologist at London's University College Hospital, blames "excess hygiene in childhood lowering gut immunity, stressful modern lifestyles, erratic eating patterns and our greater intake of processed food".

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`30-minute` pinprick test may help reduce HIV infection

`30-minute` pinprick test may help reduce HIV infectionMelbourne, December 17 : A test for HIV which provides a preliminary result within 30 minutes had been approved by the Therapeutic Goods Administration for marketing in Australia.

Announcing the approval of the test, Health Minister Tanya Plibersek said that it will lead to quicker treatment and will reduce the risk of sufferers passing on the virus, the Age reported.

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Brain scans could predict bipolar disorder risk long before onset

Brain scans could predict bipolar disorder risk long before onsetMelbourne, December 17 : Young people who are likely to develop bipolar disorder could potentially be identified before the onset of the mental illness.

This is the conclusion of a new study, which observed differences in brain activity in young people with no clinical signs of the illness, but with a parent or sibling with bipolar disorder.

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Genital surgery `on the rise` due to pornography

Genital surgery `on the rise` due to pornographyMelbourne, December 15 : Hundreds of Australian women are having genital cosmetic surgery - a trend driven by pornography, gynaecologists say.

Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists vice-president Ajay Rane said labiaplasties and vulvoplasties to reduce the size of a women''s genitals were ''''the modern version of FGM
(female genital mutilation)'''', the Age reported.

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Parents `not giving enough fruits to kids`

Parents `not giving enough fruits to kids`Melbourne, December 13 : Most parents are serving processed fruit snacks to their children instead of fresh fruits, a survey has revealed.

The survey of 501 parents found that though about 60 per cent of parents wanted their children to eat more fruit, only 46 per cent actually served it, News. com. au reported.

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Tea lowers odds of ovarian cancer?

Tea lowers odds of ovarian cancer?Sydney, Dec 12 : Drinking tea seems to lower odds of ovarian cancer, Australian research involving 1,000 women says.

Dada Su from Curtin University co-authored the study in China, involving 500 patients of ovarian carcinoma and the other half being unaffected, who completed a questionnaire about tea consumption. They drank a mixture of green, black and oolong tea.

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Wine `not heart-healthy for obese`

Wine `not heart-healthy for obese`Sydney, December 10 : As opposed to the common belief that a glass or two of wine is good since its antioxidants work to protect the heart as the alcohol hits the head, researchers have found that drinking has no protective effect if you are carrying a bit of extra weight.

According to obesity expert from London, Tim Lobstein, previous findings that small amounts of alcohol lowered heart disease risk were taken from surveys more than 40-years-old.

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Men likelier to get diagnosed with cancer than women

Men likelier to get diagnosed with cancer than womenSydney, December 8 : Men have more chances to lose their battle from cancer than women, a study has found.

It has also been found that men are also more likely to be diagnosed with cancer as compared to the fairer sex, the Sydney Morning Herald reported.

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Beer could help protect kids from illnesses

Beer could help protect kids from illnessesMelbourne, Dec 7 : Consuming large quantities of a key ingredient in beer can protect against winter sniffles and even some serious illnesses among kids, a study has claimed.

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New book blames low-fat food for infertility in women

New book blames low-fat food for infertility in womenMelbourne, December 6 : Women's low-fat, highly processed diets are contributing to low fertility and poor health, a new book has claimed.

While women wanting to get pregnant have long been warned about obesity, the authors of `Eat Fat, Be Thin' say that a low-fat diet is not the answer.

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Telling women not to eat chocolates tempts them to indulge more

Telling women not to eat chocolates tempts them to indulge moreMelbourne, Dec 4 : Warning women that eating chocolate can make them fat may actually drive some to eat more, a study has revealed.

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Babies’ umbilical cords may be key to preventing diabetes

Babies’ umbilical cords may be key to preventing diabetesSydney, December 4 : Australian researchers are conducting a world-first study to try to prevent the onset of type 1 diabetes by treating children with their own umbilical cord blood.

They hope the blood, rich in stem cells and immune cells, will help reboot the immune systems of children at risk of the condition, which occurs when the body attacks and kills its own insulin-producing cells, the Sydney Morning Herald reported.

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French fries `are actually healthy`

French fries `are actually healthy`Sydney, Dec 4 : French fries, the scourge of nutritionists, are actually healthy for you, according to researchers.

Professor Vincenzo Fogliano, who oversaw the study with Italian chef Giuseppe Daddio said that fries are not bad for us.

"If it's fried in the correct way, a potato chip... can be an excellent nutritional product," the Sydney Morning Herald quoted him as saying.

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Tech addiction increasing `sleeping pills` intake among young people

Tech addiction increasing `sleeping pills` intake among young peopleSydney, November 30 : Experts have blamed tablet computers, smartphones and other mobile devices for a 50 per cent jump in the number of young people scoffing sleeping pills.

Sleep expert Dr Alex Bartle said there is "huge concern" among experts that people are reaching for prescriptions instead of looking at why they cannot sleep.

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'Exercise, mental activity vital for brain health'

'Exercise, mental activity vital for brain health'Sydney, Nov 29 : Physical exercise is just as vital as mental activity in keeping the brain fit and healthy, according to an Australian research.

A study conducted by scientists at the University of Queensland's Brain Institute found the mechanism by which exercise increases the number of stem cells that are actively generating new nerve cells in the brain and reverses the decline normally observed as animals age.

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Key immune system gene could subdue HIV

Key immune system gene could subdue HIVSydney, Nov 27 : A gene that protects the human embryo could possibly treat and subdue chronic infections such as HIV, hepatitis and tuberculosis.

The newly discovered gene, called Arih2, is basic to the immune system - making critical decisions about whether to switch it on during an infection or not.

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