Smoking

Smoking

 

The fallout from ash
The consequence of the erupting volcano in Iceland has been enormous disruption and discomfort, especially throughout Europe. Even so, death and disability directly due to the falling ash has been remarkably rare. Not so rare are the serious health problems associated with the manufacture of ash from smoking tobacco.

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Want good eyesight? Eat fish, stop smoking
We all know that smoking is a major risk factor for many diseases including heart and blood vessel disease, osteoporosis and various cancers. Perhaps less well known is the fact that smoking causes blindness. Smokers and people who have smoked are three times more likely to develop macular degeneration.

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Kicking goals for men’s health?
International Men’s Health Week (IMHW) is celebrated in June each year, with the aim of increasing community awareness of men’s health issues. Too often, it seems, the topic of men’s health is confined to discussion of conditions such as erectile dysfunction, prostate problems or male pattern baldness, while overlooking diseases such as heart disease, diabetes and bowel cancer.

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We all should work with heart
Hypertension (the medical term for abnormally high blood pressure) is considered by the World Health Organization (WHO) as one of the most serious risk factors for death worldwide. It is estimated that about 30% of Australian adults have hypertension; and most of these people are receiving no treatment. What makes hypertension so serious is that, well before the explosive heart attack or stroke occurs, there is underlying, sometimes irreparable damage done to the cardiovascular system, the kidneys and the brain. Also, hypertension, especially when combined with diabetes, significantly increases the risk of blindness.

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Changing the face of Mens Health
Self esteem, or lack of it, has an effect on men’s health; a critical issue in times of employment and financial uncertainty. When men feel they have no control over their lives they are sometimes burdened with feelings of guilt and shame. One out of every six men suffers from depression at any one time; and men are more likely to suicide than women. Also, men often do not recognise the symptoms of depression, and so do not seek help.

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Dealing with dementia
Dementia is a condition that directly affects more than 250,000 Australians – a number which is expected to climb to nearly a million within 40 years. As yet there is no cure for dementia; and indeed the way our brain and nervous system works is not yet fully understood. All the more remarkable then, that it was the German neurologist, Alois Alzheimer, born nearly 150 years ago who first identified and gave his name to a condition that has now become so common in the developed world.

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Beware the deadliest of all the nightshades
Extracts from the plant Atropa belladonna have had long histories as medicines, as cosmetics and also as poisons. It’s a member of the Nightshade family. In fact, so potent is belladonna as a poison it bears the common name “deadly nightshade”. These days we know that belladonna is far from the most deadly of all the nightshades. Other members of this extended family include potatoes, tomatoes, eggplants, chili peppers and tobacco.

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Good health gift ideas
For many people, Christmas has deep religious significance; for others, it’s simply a time to relax and enjoy a few days off work. But for almost everyone, this time of year has traditionally become one of celebration. Throughout many societies it is commonplace to exchange gifts or simply ‘season’s greetings’, and to express sentiments of peace and goodwill. Wishes of good health usually accompany greetings at this time of year; so, perhaps some healthy gift ideas could be worth a thought as well.

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Resolution roundabout
By this time of the year many of us who made New Year’s resolutions will have already relapsed. This is because these resolutions generally involve behaviour change – such things as doing more exercise, eating better and the cessation of smoking – and they’re the most difficult of all changes to make.

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Celebration of ageing
Living longer is a great thing, but we also need to remain healthy to enjoy our longer lives to their fullest. Unfortunately, debilitating conditions such as heart and kidney disease, diabetes, and some types of arthritis are more common in older people.

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Quitting a deadly habit
there is a tobacco-related death about every 28 minutes in Australia. A large proportion of these deaths are males (almost 13,000 deaths per year compared with 6,000 for females). In all age groups, except 15-34 years, more deaths were related to use of tobacco than to alcohol or illicit drugs. In addition, a large proportion of these deaths (around 21 every day) are from cancer, one-quarter of which involve working-age Australians.

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WARREN

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