Wednesday, September 15, 2010


Scientific research in food area is straining its credulity by publishing patently unsustainable and some time bordering on non-sense, "findings" putting the consumer in great confusion and trauma. The latest to come out of the stable of a renowned college in the UK is the strange recommendation to consume a drug while indulging in a fatty meal to prevent a "heart attack"! One can understand a diabetic patient consuming a hypoglycemic tablet before eating a regular meal because it is necessary prevent glucose build up in the blood and avoid consequences there of. Similarly people with hyper tension disorder have to take medication before meals to control blood pressure within the limits. But a perfectly healthy person consuming a drug to prevent potential health hazards is some thing difficult to comprehend and such research findings even if true should not be encouraged. One should not be blamed if aspersions are cast on the true intention of this research-helping the consumer or the giant drug companies which stand to benefit if "serving" Statin in fast food joints become an accepted practice.

"Would you like a statin with your fries? Fast-food joints should distribute for free the cholesterol-lowering drugs called statins, taken by 24 million Americans to prevent heart disease andstrokes, to offset the effects of a fatty meal, a new study suggests. The researchers, at Imperial College London, concluded that the cardiovascular toll of a daily meal consisting of a Quarter Pounder with cheese and a small milkshake would be neutralized by a statin pill served as a side order. The findings of the clinical trial, which involved 43,000 participants, will be published Sunday in the American Journal of Cardiology. "In terms of your likelihood of having a heart attack, taking a statin can reduce your risk to more or less the same degree as a fast-food meal increases it," lead researcher Darrel Francis told reporters. And providing the pills would cost less than 7 cents per customer, about the same as a packet of ketchup. A fast-food statin may not be enough, however. The British Heart Foundation, stressing that the drugs are not a "magic bullet," recommends exercise and a healthy diet as the best bet for staving off heart problems, Reuters reports".

It is prudent for the experts to advice people that drug consumption is not a panacea for all health problems created by bad life styles and reminding them about the role of balanced diet, moderation in food consumption and regular physical activities that would burn the calories. Statins are already under a cloud with some critics raising serious questions regarding its role in protection of heart and with billions of dollars of stake in Statin business, the pharmaceutical industry can be expected to exploit the lack of unanimity amongst the scientists on the effectiveness in preventing heart attacks.

No comments: