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The Checkup: November 28, 2010 - December 4, 2010

Experts endorse obesity surgery

A federal advisory panel panel Friday endorsed a company's request that a device used for weight-loss surgery be approved for people who are slightly less obese, a crucial step towards making the already increasingly popular procedures available to many more patients.The 10-member Food and Drug Administration advisory committee voted overwhelmingly...

By Rob Stein  | December 3, 2010; 5:03 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (5)
Categories:  FDA, Obesity  
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Red Cross bars chronic fatigue patients from donating blood

The American Red Cross announced Friday that it is barring people with chronic fatigue syndrome from donating blood to reduce the risk of transmitting a virus that has been associated with the disease. The virus is known as xenotropic murine leukemia virus-related virus or XMRV. Some studies have found that...

By Rob Stein  | December 3, 2010; 4:23 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (12)
Categories:  Chronic Conditions, FDA, blood safety, red cross  
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Is that right? Jimmy Dean breakfast will make you shine?

Jimmy Dean sells a line of breakfast items, some in sandwich form and now in "D-Lights Breakfast Bowls." These egg-and-meat concoctions promise to start your day right by providing plenty of protein. Hence the tag line "protein@breakfast."

By Jennifer LaRue Huget  | December 3, 2010; 7:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (7)
Categories:  Is That Right?, Nutrition and Fitness  
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Babies on diets? Now I've heard it all.

Recent news stories have called attention to a phenomenon -- without saying how widespread it is -- in which parents restrict their babies' diets to ward off chubbiness. Apparently for some it's a matter of aesthetics; one story cites a father who raves about how skinny his infant daughter is. Others, though, restrict their babies' food intake so the children won't go on to be chubby children -- or overweight adults.

By Jennifer LaRue Huget  | December 2, 2010; 7:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (6)
Categories:  Childhood obesity, Eating disorders, Family Health, Infant health, Kids' health, Me Minus 10, Motherhood, Nutrition and Fitness, Obesity, Parenting  
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Controversial 'ella' contraceptive now available in U.S. for first time

A controversial new form of emergency contraception known as "ella" is now available to American women for the first time, the company selling the drug announced Wednesday. Ella, which can prevent a pregnancy as many as five days after sex, can be obtained by U.S. women who get a prescription...

By Rob Stein  | December 1, 2010; 9:57 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (12)
Categories:  Abortion, Contraception, FDA  
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Concerns about kids' medicines

New research is rekindling concerns about the safety of some popular over-the-counter liquid medications for children. H. Shonna Yin of the New York University School of Medicine and colleagues studied the dosing directions and measuring devices provided for 200 top-selling pediatric liquid medications sold without a prescription, including treatments for...

By Rob Stein  | December 1, 2010; 7:30 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  FDA  
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Late abortions being offered in Germantown

A Nebraska doctor who performs abortions late in a pregnancy is planning to begin offering the controversial procedures at a clinic in Germantown, Md., an official said Tuesday. LeRoy Carhart plans to begin working on Monday at Germantown Reproductive Health Services, which already performs abortions earlier in a pregnancy, according...

By Rob Stein  | November 30, 2010; 12:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (34)
Categories:  Abortion  
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Protein-rich, low-GI diet protects weight loss, study finds

The latest salvo came late last week when the New England Journal of Medicine published a European study showing that folks who followed a diet in which higher-protein, lower-glycemic-index foods prevailed were better able to maintain their recent weight loss than those who ate less protein and higher-glycemic-value foods. And those who followed a low-protein, high-glycemic-index diet were more likely to regain their lost weight.

By Jennifer LaRue Huget  | November 30, 2010; 7:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (9)
Categories:  Diabetes, Me Minus 10, Nutrition and Fitness, Obesity, glycemic index  
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New vitamin D recommendations

Despite mounting pressure to urge many Americans to sharply boost their vitamin D levels, new official recommendations are not advocating a huge increase in the amount of the "sunshine vitamin" that people get. The United States and Canada asked the Institute of Medicine, which is part of the National Academy...

By Rob Stein  | November 30, 2010; 12:01 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (48)
Categories:  Aging, Alternative and Complementary Medicine, Cancer, Cardiovascular Health, Chronic Conditions, Dietary Guidelines, Dietary supplements, Nutrition and Fitness, Prevention, Vitamins, osteoporosis  
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Disordered eating needs doctor's attention

A report published this morning in the journal Pediatrics shows that eating disorders have become more common among children and teenagers over the past sixty years. The potential health impact of such illnesses is so great that pediatricians are urged to learn to do a better job of recognizing and treating patients who may be anorexic, bulimic or otherwise disordered in their relationship with food.

By Jennifer LaRue Huget  | November 29, 2010; 12:01 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (11)
Categories:  Eating disorders, Nutrition and Fitness, Parenting, Teens  
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