Friday, April 06, 2007

Aspirin May Protect Women From Heart Attack, Stroke and Cancer

news you may not know

Are You Sure

You Want

Scrambled Eggs??

Back to nature, my foot! Sure, you were on board for the organic meats, milk and veggies. But, this is simply over the top. Hippocrates! What did he really know, anyway? As far as you're concerned, he was just one more fanatic afraid to admit that modern science had a better way.

...Oh, well.

You might as well get to it. After all, by the time you get down to the stand of willow trees, strip off the Recommended Daily Allowance of bark, wash off the little crawly critters and give it the required chew time, half your morning will be gone. Good thing you got up at 4am to round up and milk the Oberhasli goats - boy, if you only had their freewheeling, free ranging, free specially-formulated-diet lifestyle...

Is it all Hippocrates' fault? Well...

He was the first to use an extract of the willow bark, from which aspirin is derived, to treat pain. Now, a recent study indicates a daily dose of aspirin may be beneficial for older women. The "may be" caveat is attached to the results because the study was "observational." This means there was no double-blind, directed study, but that women involved in the study made their own choices concerning aspirin use and simply reported those decisions. This complicates the conclusions that may be drawn from the study, as the group of women choosing to use aspirin may have made other health and lifestyle choices that beneficially impacted their lives.

The bottom line? Consult your doctor before chawing on the bark of the white willow - or, before initiating a daily dose of aspirin.

Caveats aside, the results of the 24-year study are impressive. Women taking a daily dose of aspirin - the 81 milligram baby type - showed an overall 25% lower risk of death than women taking no aspirin. The risk of death from cardiovascular disease was 38% lower and the risk form cancer was 12% lower. Hmm... Maybe Hippocrates was on to something...

All right. Now that the goats are milked and you've taken your daily dose of bark, it's time to get some breakfast going. "What will it be today?" you mutter, as you poke through the pantry. Then, it strikes you. You sit down, grab your running shoes and cinch them up tight. You're going to head down to the lower forty and chase down a free range chicken - if you're lucky, you'll be scarfing down scrambled eggs in two hours flat...

To read a summary of the study, see this from ScienceDaily. To read the entire study, see this from the Archives of Internal Medicine.


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