Skip navigation


PositiveTip for

Artificial Sweeteners Not So Sweet

Sucralose may cause inflammation and fat formation.

Sucralose is a popular non-caloric artificial sweetener thought to be safe. In a small, early study, researchers have shown its use may predispose people to metabolic syndrome. Dr. S. Sen, a senior study author, said, "The only part that's not there is the calories--it's not adding the calories, but it's doing everything else that glucose does." A larger study is now underway to assess other types of artificial sweeteners.

PositiveTip: Choose to enjoy less intensely sweet foods by lowering your intake of sweetened and artificially-sweetened foods.

PositiveTip for

Manage Inflammation to Reduce Colorectal Cancer Risk

A healthy diet and weight lowers inflammation and reduces risk of colon cancer.

When a tissue is chronically inflamed it often stimulates pathways in the cells that increase cancer risk. Eating colorful foods that are aromatic, nutrient-dense and low in calories tend to reduce inflammation and help protect against colorectal cancer. Healthy eating also tends to promote a healthy weight. Stored fat in the belly may play a strong role in inflammation, increasing the risk of the same cancer.

PositiveTip; Tackle inflammation with a healthy diet and weight control, and have regular screenings.

Inflammation -- The Newest Theory of Disease

Does inflammation cause disease? That's the newest idea to capture the imagination of medical investigators. Heart disease? Caused by inflammation of the lining of the arteries.  Peptic ulcers?  Inflammation of the lining of the stomach or small intestine.  Colon cancer? Inflammation of the colon's lining.

Inflammation is the body’s reaction to irritants with a standard response that every medical person is taught to recognize – the simple flair and wheal – the redness and swelling seen in the skin after a scratch from a twig or the sting of a bee. When an irritant comes in contact with the body, the body responds with inflammation.

Taking Control

PillsThe process of acute inflammation is designed to control and eliminate the invasion of foreign proteins in the body, whether from bacteria, viruses, foreign cells (other biological cells that are not of human origin) or cancer cells. But when the inflammatory process works overtime, normal human cells of various types are damaged or destroyed.

In an effort to learn how to keep inflammation from damaging good cells, scientists have been thoroughly dissecting the inflammatory process. They've identified multiple components of the process and created drugs to offset the harm that over-inflammation can cause. These drugs are intended to stop acute exacerbations of arthritis or colitis and life-threatening bouts of asthma, anaphylactic shock or heart attacks.

The Newest Theory of Disease

Inflammation of the ankle.Is inflammation the cause of disease?

This is the newest idea capturing the imagination of medical investigators. We know that heart disease is caused by inflammation of the lining of the arteries. We know that inflammation of the lining in the stomach or small intestine causes peptic ulcer disease. The cause of colon cancer is inflammation of the lining of the colon.

Inflammation is the body's standard response to irritants. Every medical professional is taught to recognize the signs – the simple flair and wheal – the skin's redness and swelling after a scratch or bee sting. When an irritant comes in contact with the body, the body reacts with inflammation.

PositiveTip for

Maternal Warmth and Inflammation

Decades later, people benefit from material warmth when infants.

Low socioeconomic status is known as a risk factor for a multitude of medical illnesses, including increased levels of inflammatory markers such as interleukin (IL)-6. A new study has demonstrated that maternal warmth in early life affects inflammatory measures in adulthood, irrespective of socioeconomic status, suggesting that specific gene pathways are altered by the quality of the parent-child relationship.

PositiveTip: Parents (and probably grandparents) influence even gene expression in their offspring by the quality of their interactions.

PositiveTip for

Brushing Your Teeth May Reduce Your Risk of Heart Disease

People who brush their teeth less than once a day have significantly higher risk of heart disease.

In Scotland, researchers followed almost 12,000 adults for 8 years in a study linking good oral health with a lower risk of heart disease. After adjusting for confounding factors, people who brushed their teeth less than once a day were 70% more likely to suffer heart disease compared to those who brushed twice a day.

The researchers suggest that poor oral hygiene may contribute to "systemic inflammation."

PositiveTip: Strange as it may seem, brushing your teeth regularly does more than just keep your teeth and gums healthy!