Vitamin D and high blood pressure–probably ineffective

Vitamin D is a group of fat-soluble steroid-like biochemicals that have one known responsibility in human health–enhancing intestinal absorption of calcium and phosphate, minerals which are necessary for bone development and bone health. In humans, the most important D vitamins are vitamin D3 and vitamin D2, both of which can be ingested from dietary sources, including fishes, milk products, …

More evidence Vitamin D supplementation does not reduce breast cancer risk

Potential causes for cancer are numerous. Infections. Radon gas. Cigarette smoking. Sun exposure. Obesity. With over 200 types of cancer, each with a different pathophysiology, there may be an equal (and probably greater) number of causes. Although some cancers can be easily prevented, such as never smoking, which reduces your risk of lung cancer, one of the most prevalent cancers in …

Cancer Treatment Centers of America advertising

You’ve probably seen their commercials spread over all of the major TV networks. Beautiful scenes. Well-kept hospitals which often to appear to be near empty. And an anecdote or two or three from presumably real patients who describe their experience at Cancer Treatment Centers of America (CTCA), a private, for-profit operator of cancer treatment hospitals and outpatient clinics …

Vitamin D reduces breast cancer risk–is there anything to it?

One of my favorite topics to debunk is the use of supplements to prevent (or worse yet, cure) cancer. As I have discussed in the past, supplements are, with just a couple of exceptions, worthless in preventing cancer.  Potential causes for cancer are numerous. Infections. Radon gas. Cigarette smoking. Sun exposure. Obesity. With over 200 types of cancer, each with a …

Pandemic flu vaccine and narcolepsy–an analysis

Today, the British Medical Journal published a retrospective study, by Elizabeth Miller, that analyzes the risk of narcolepsy in children and adolescents in England who received the 2009 A/H1N1 pandemic flu vaccine (Pandemrix) from October 2009 through mid-2010. This study followed up on the observations seen in Finland and other countries that there was some increased risk of …

Court says Freedom of Speech applies to Big Pharma Sales Reps

In a strange decision, the United States 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals, which has jurisdiction over  Connecticut, New York, and Vermont, ruled that a drug sales representative who promotes “off-label” uses of a particular drug is exercising their “freedom of speech.” The Court decided in a 2-1 vote, in United States v. Caronia (pdf), that the criminal conviction of Alfred Caronia, a …

Multivitamins–big money, no effect on cardiovascular disease

A few months ago, I wrote about the role of supplements, mainly vitamins and other nutrients, in preventing cancer. Conclusion: they didn’t. To quote Martinez et al., who published a review of dietary supplements and vitamins in cancer prevention,  Nutritional supplementation is now a multibillion-dollar industry, and about half of all US adults take supplements. Supplement …

Ginkgo biloba and neurological disorders–Myth vs. Science

I’m trying out a new series, looking at some popular myths (mostly in medicine, but maybe we’ll wander outside of it when something interesting shows up) and determining if there’s any support or not in science. I’m going to link mostly to science articles and high-quality blogs, just so you have all the back-up evidence …