THERE IS A mantra that comes up frequently when the subject is colorectal cancer: “Preventable, treatable, beatable.” That’s because preventing this form of cancer has been tremendously suc- cessful, or, if it is detected early enough, a good outcome is achiev- able via surgical intervention. Colorectal cancer, involving the colon or rectum, is second to lung cancer as a leading cause of cancer deaths. It is equally common in men and women. In 2010, more than 142,000 new cases were diagnosed in the U.S., while more than 51,000 people died from the disease. The key to beating colorectal cancer is periodic screening, begin- ning before any symptoms appear. Age 50 is the starting point for those at average risk; those at greater risk need to start screening earlier. Diagnostic tests include colonoscopy, flexible sigmoidos- copy and barium enema. The goal of the testing is to discover or rule out the existence of colorectal polyps, growths that protrude from the lining of the colon or rectum. The majority of these polyps never become cancer, yet all cases of colorectal cancer start from a polyp. Who is at risk? • Men and women age 50 and older • People who use tobacco, are obese or are sedentary • Those with a family history of colorectal cancer, polyps or other types of bowel disease What helps to reduce risk? • Don’t smoke. • Don’t drink alcohol excessively. • Be physically active and exercise regularly. • Maintain a healthy weight. • Eat a high-fiber diet rich in fruits, vegetables, nuts, beans and whole grains. • Consume calcium-rich foods uch as low-fat or skim milk. • Limit red meat consumption and avoid processed meats. Where can you get more information?
health for your HEALTHY LIFESTYLES Jacqueline Fulop-Goodling (
smiles.com), is a New York–based orthodontist.
Straight to the point
By Dr. Jacqueline
Why straight teeth are so important
A WELL-ALIGNED smile is not just part
of a pretty face—it is the mark of a
healthy mouth. And your mouth is the
gateway to the rest of your body.
Straight teeth allow teeth to be
brushed more efficiently, improve
speech and allow for better digestion,
leading to overall better health.
The best way to keep gums healthy is
through proper brushing and flossing (since bacteria can hide between teeth), but even the best
brushers have a hard time getting rid of every
“tooth bug” in a crowded mouth.
Well-aligned teeth trap fewer particles,
develop fewer areas of decay and are easier to
floss, all of which is imperative to good gum and
oral health. In contrast, teeth with a lot of spacing should be treated with orthodontics to close
those gaps since gums are healthiest when
they fit snugly around teeth on both sides.
There are more enzymes in your mouth than
in your stomach that break up food, making
digestion easier. People who chew longer and
eat slower digest their food better and therefore
have a tendency to be slimmer! Straight teeth do
a better job of breaking up the food particles and
allowing this process to occur.
The position of teeth plays a major role in
the ability to correctly pronounce certain
sounds; an example of this is when children
lose their baby teeth and lack the ability to pro-
nounce certain words. Certain letters can be
clearly pronounced only when the tongue hits
and makes specific contact with the teeth.
When teeth are out of alignment, it’s reflected
in a person’s enunciation, whether the person
is 6 years old and waiting for adult teeth to
erupt or 40 with misaligned teeth.
Hope for the
PEANUT ALLERGY IS a
common food allergy, and
one of the most dangerous.
Some people can experience a
severe reaction to just a trace
amount of peanut ingested by
accident in a supposedly pea-nut-free food.
Parents quickly learn to be vigilant about their
children who have exhibited a peanut allergy, constantly carrying an EpiPen to deliver lifesaving
epinephrine to stave off anaphylactic shock, a
sometimes-fatal extreme reaction to an allergen.
With the incidence of peanut allergies in
children doubling over the last 30 years, peanut
and other common food allergies are receiving
major scrutiny through research efforts supported by the National Institutes of Health and
carried out by the Consortium of Food Allergy
Research. Originally established in 2005, the
consortium recently received funding for
MARCH 2011 ;e Costco Connection 73
another five years of studies, with several clinical
trials under way at major medical centers.
The peanut is well represented in the
research so far, and results from work with children at Duke University Medical Center are very
promising. Oral immunotherapy, a systematic
method of desensitization to peanuts by gradually ingesting larger doses of peanut protein, is
seen as a breakthrough. By the fourth month of
a daily regimen, a child previously allergic to
peanuts should be able to eat a full serving of
them without incident. Ongoing exposure to
peanuts is necessary to maintain the desensitization, all under medical supervision.
Though the treatment has not yet been
approved by the Food and Drug Administration,
what Duke and other centers are learning about the
peanut and oral immunotherapy will likely influence the management of many other food allergies.
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