“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Vitamins Will Kill You, Have an Apple.

Vitamin pills 'increase risk of early death'
By Kate Devlin, Medical Correspondent telegraph
Last Updated: 12:01am

Popular vitamin supplements taken by millions of people in the hope of improving their health may do no good and could increase the risk of a premature death, researchers report today.

They warn healthy people who take antioxidant supplements, including vitamins A and E, to try to keep diseases such as cancer at bay that they are interfering with their natural body defences and may be increasing their risk of an early death by up to 16 per cent.

Researchers at Copenhagen University carried out a review of 67 studies on 230,000 healthy people and found "no convincing evidence" that any of the antioxidants helped to prolong life expectancy. But some "increased mortality".

About 12 million Britons supplement their diets with vitamins and the industry is worth £330 million. But little research has been done on the long-term health implications.

The Department of Health said yesterday that people should try to get the vitamins they need by eating a balanced diet and advised care in taking large doses of supplements.

A spokesman said: "There is a need to exercise caution in the use of high doses of purified supplements of vitamins, including antioxidant vitamins, and minerals. Their impact on long-term health may not have been fully established and they cannot be assumed to be without risk.

Antioxidants, including vitamins A, E, C and beta-carotene and selenium, are said to mop up compounds, called free radicals, which cause disease. It is this action that researchers believe may cause problems with the defence system.

The Danish research, released by the influential Cochrane Library, applied only to synthetic supplements and not to vitamins that occur naturally in vegetables and fruit.

It found that vitamin A supplements increased the risk of death in healthy people by 16 per cent. Taking beta-carotene was linked to a 7 per cent increased risk, while regular users of vitamin E supplements increased the risk of an early death by four per cent.

Although the review found no significant detrimental effect caused by vitamin C, it found no evidence that it helped ward off disease. Millions take it in the hope of avoiding a common cold.

Goran Bjelakovic, who led the review, said: "We could find no evidence to support taking antioxidant supplements to reduce the risk of dying earlier in healthy people or patients with various diseases.

"If anything, people in trial groups given the antioxidants beta-carotene, vitamin A, and vitamin E showed increased rates of mortality."

But Patrick Holford, a nutritionist who has formulated supplements for the company Biocare, said: "Antioxidants are not meant to be magic bullets and should not be expected to undo a lifetime of unhealthy habits.

"When used properly, in combination with a healthy diet full of fruit and vegetables, getting plenty of exercise and not smoking, antioxidant supplements can play an important role in maintaining and promoting overall health."

A spokesman for the Health Supplements Information Service said: "People should get all the vitamins and minerals they need from their diet, but for the millions who are not able to do that, vitamins can be a useful supplement and they should not stop taking them."

However, Catherine Collins, of the British Dietetic Association, said: "This study is deeply worrying and shows that there should be more regulation for vitamins and minerals.

"The public can buy vitamins as easily as sweets. They should be treated in the same way as paracetamol with maximum limits on the dosage."


  1. As rufus told us, time and again, there are other ethanol options than feed grains. But the government does not subsidize those. Leaving the ethanol business one of government largess, not the efficient production of ethanol.

    The game is rigged, enjoy the play.

  2. If Congress does not act on climate change, TEAM43 thinks there will be a "trainwreck"!

    WASHINGTON (Associated Press) -- Revising his stance on global warming, President Bush will propose a new target for stopping the growth of the nation's greenhouse gas emissions by 2025.

    The president also will call Wednesday for putting the brakes on greenhouse gas emissions from electric power plans within 10 to 15 years, according to a senior administration official familiar with the afternoon speech Bush will deliver in the Rose Garden.

    The official spoke on condition of anonymity in advance of the speech.

    Bush is not going to outline a specific proposal, but he'll lay out a strategy for "realistic" emission reduction targets and "principles" he thinks Congress should follow in crafting global warming legislation.

    The new goal for curtailing greenhouse gas emissions is an attempt to short-circuit what White House aides call a potential regulatory "train wreck" if Congress doesn't act on climate change.

  3. Bush Raises Temp on Global Warming
    By Tony Blankley

    Now it is Bush's turn to be the last man to join a losing proposition. In how many ways is this proposal not useful? First of all, as Chris Horner, the author of "The Politically Incorrect Guide to Global Warming and Environmentalism," shrewdly has pointed out, the Democrats desperately want Bush and the Republicans "to take ownership" of the global alarmists' issues before he goes.

    This is important. Whatever restraint likely to be exercised by the Democratic Party majority next year will be induced by the political fear that the Republicans would be able to say I told you so if the Democrats' policies contract the economy and put yet more people out of work.

    That will give them political cover for the entire program, which, whatever it may try to do regarding "global warming," certainly will give governments and international organizations vastly more control over the United States economy.

    A banana a day is good, as well.

  4. Factor in the enhanced authority that Team43 proposes to hand to the Federal Reserve in regards mortgage lending.
    The move to "green caps" and a Federally chartered private monopoly regulating financial markets in the US, providing the US economy less freedom to navigate the shoals.

    Unionist Boner wins, seems to me.

  5. Bring that CRP land back into production. I'll be finding out if USDA knows if anything's up in that regard next Monday and will report.
    A company considering building an ethanol plant in eastern Idaho now has an attractive set of financial incentives from Canada to put the plant in that country instead.

    For the past two years, Iogen Corp., a Canadian biotechnology company, has leaned toward building a cellulosic ethanol facility near Shelley. The location would put the plant close to farmers already under contract to provide the wheat and barley straw, corn stover and switchgrass used to produce ethanol.

    But last month, the Canadian government announced it had allocated $550 million in government funding for projects to buyild next-generation biofuels plants in Canada....

    This is not to do with the nuclear power plant and ethanol facility hoped for in south Idaho, but a separate deal.

  6. I think exercise is the big thing. I'm deficient in that regard lately. I also think the body has an internal clock that is hard to change forward or back. When time's up, tiems's up.

  7. Silvio Berlusconi returned to power in Italy yesterday and promptly pledged to close the border to illegal immigrants in a crackdown on criminals he called 'the army of evil'. The 71-year-old conservative secured a third term as prime minister but owed his majority in both chambers of parliament to the support of the anti-immigration and protectionist Northern League

  8. This comment has been removed by the author.

  9. The "Northern League"

    Has a ring to it ...
    Organize around that avatar

    The "Northern League"
    Fit into Gordon Brown's latest theme:

    Enlarging the Anglosphere
    April 16, 2008;

    "Northern Anglo League"
    USA, UK & Canada, organized along a WASP cultural theme.

    Strengthening those ties that bind.

  10. This comment has been removed by the author.

  11. Along, of course, with a Pacfic Anglo League

    OZ, US & India, with Malaysia & Phillipines thrown in for shucks & chuckles.

    He who controls the language controls the future.


  12. I could be persuaded of the benefits of snuggling up closer in the Anglo-sphere, but not too close.

    Kiss D.C. Goodbye Hearings, hearings, hearings.

  13. Here you go.

    Finally something to take the sting out of old age.

    Hookers On Call In Rest Homes

    The coming thing.

    Probably do more for the health of the elderly than fruit, veggies, and vitamins combined:)

    But the poor girls....

  14. Reminds one of King David and Abishag, though it didn't do Dave all that much good. Made her famous, though.

  15. Obama Claims Jewish Kinship

    Race, his middle name and "scurrilous emails" about him are partly responsible for the discomfort some people have with him, Barack Obama told Jewish leaders in a private meeting in the Philadelphia area today.

    He also told the group of 75 leaders at a local synagogue that he feels a sense of "kinship" with the Jewish community, and that he has been influenced in his life by Jewish writers, philosophers and friends.

    “There is a kinship and a sense of shared community that predates my political career and will extend beyond this particular election," Obama said, according to the pool report from the closed-door event. "Know that I will be there for you, just as I believe that you will be there for me.”

    “My links to the Jewish community are not political," he said. "They preceded my entry into politics.”

    Mat, meet your long lost cousin.:)

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