- Pregnancy & Childbirth
- Attachment Parenting
- Family Nutrition
- Family Wellness
TV WATCHING DURING CHILDHOOD LINKED TO POOR HEALTH LATER
A study of 1000 people found that watching TV for 2 or more hours daily between ages 5 and 15 increased the likelihood of adult obesity, poor fitness, high cholesterol and smoking.
Dr. Sears comments: Click here to read more about how to help your child grow up LEAN and HEALTHY.
CHRONIC ACETAMINOPHEN USE MAY HARM KIDNEY
A study of middle-aged women showed long-term use of this common pain reliever (sold as Tylenol or generic) may decrease kidney function. Women who took over 1500 tablets over their lifetime showed a significant increased risk.
Dr. Sears comments: I recommend acetaminophen in the office every day for pain and fever relief for kids. This study was in middle-aged women who took the drug chronically almost every day for years. The findings here do not seem to apply to appropriate, occasional use in children as needed. I will continue to recommend acetaminophen.
FLU SHOT MAY ACTUALLY MAKE ASTHMA WORSE
A study of 800 kids with asthma showed those who got the flu shot had more trouble with their asthma over that flu season.
Dr. Sears comments: It has long been recommended that kids with asthma and other chronic health conditions get a flu shot because catching the flu can make their asthma flare up. The researchers in this study point out that this reasoning has never been confirmed by research. This study, in fact, reveals the opposite – those kids who got the shot actually had more trouble with asthma over that winter. The reason is unclear. I recommend asking your doctor when the next flu season comes around. More research will be done to clarify this issue.
BREASTFEEDING A BABY DECREASES MOM’S GENETIC BREAST CANCER RISK
It is known that women who have mutations in a gene called BRCA1 are more likely to get breast cancer. It has also been long known that women who don’t breastfeed a baby, or only do so for short periods, are more likely to get breast cancer. This study linked the two factors and found that women with this gene mutation who breastfeed a cumulative 12 months or more have a 60% lower chance of developing breast cancer.
U.S. BREASTFEEDING RATES STILL ALARMINGLY LOW
In a related story, data for the U.S. reveal that only 14% of mothers follow the American Academy of Pediatrics recommendation to exclusively breastfeed their babies for the first 6 months of life.
Dr. Sears comments: Everyone knows how much breastfeeding benefits babies, but we don’t often think how it may benefit a mother’s health. All women, but especially those with a family history of breast cancer, can decrease even a genetic risk by following the recommendations for breastfeeding each baby for at least one year.
Click here to read more about the benefits of breastfeeding.