ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
New Spray Could Benefit Cystic Fibrosis Patients
Traffic, Dust Linked to Asthma in Kids
Folic Acid Might Offer Allergy Relief
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Could Chinese Herb Be a Natural Viagra?
Ginger Can Ease Nausea From Chemotherapy Treatments
Eight Spiritual Universal Principles in the Art of Practice
ANIMAL CARE
Beware of Dog Bites
Separation Anxiety, Canine-Style
Rest Easy. When It Comes to Swine Flu, Your Pet Is Safe
BONES & JOINTS
Majority of College Students Report Backpack-Related Pain
Most Kids With Type 1 Diabetes Lack Vitamin D
Postmenopausal Women With Breast Cancer Face Joint Issues
CANCER
Yoga May Bring Calm to Breast Cancer Treatment
Omega-3 May Safely Treat Precancerous Bowel Polyps
Gene Screen May Predict Colon Cancer's Return
CAREGIVING
Children's Bath Products Contain Contaminants
More Than 60,000 Patients Risked Hepatitis Infections
Study of Everest Climbers Questions Oxygen Use
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Salt Boosts Blood Pressure in High-Risk Patients
Vitamins Do Older Women Little Good
Drink a Little Wine, Live a Little Longer
COSMETIC
Study Evaluates Laser Therapies for Hair Removal
Contact Lenses Boost Kids' Self-Image
Wrinkle Fillers Need Better Label Warnings: FDA Panel
DENTAL, ORAL
Health Tip: At Risk for Gingivitis
A Sweet Way to Shield Baby's Teeth
Gum Care Helps Control Type 2 Diabetes and Its Complications
DIABETES
Saliva Test Could Monitor Type 2 Diabetes
Strict Blood Sugar Lowering Won't Ease Diabetes Heart Risk
Findings Challenge Tight Glucose Control for Critically Ill Patients
DIET, NUTRITION
Just Say No to Nuts During Pregnancy
Myrrh May Lower High Cholesterol
Omega-3 May Reduce Endometriosis Risk
DISABILITIES
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Golf Course Insecticides Pose Little Danger to Players
Gas Cooking Might Up Your Cancer Risk
Artificial Light Linked to Prostate Cancer Risk
EYE CARE, VISION
Guard Kids' Eyes Against Long-Term Sun Damage
Half of U.S. Adults Lack 20/20 Vision
Cases of Age-Related Farsightedness to Soar
FITNESS
Will the Wii Keep You Fit?
Weak Muscles May Cause 'Runner's Knee'
'Safe' Ozone Levels May Not Be for Some
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Japanese Herbals May Ease Gastro Woes
Gum Chewing May Speed Colon Surgery Recovery
New Guidelines Issued for Management of IBS
GENERAL HEALTH
Dry Weather Boosts Odds of Flu Outbreaks
Trans-Fat Ban In New York City Is Proving successful
Lower Vitamin D Levels in Blacks May Up Heart Risks
HEAD & NECK
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
E-Mailing Your Way to Healthier Habits
Magnet Therapy May Ease Hard-to-Treat Depression
Airport Full Body Scanners Pose No Health Threat: Experts
HEARING
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Soy Protein Doesn't Lower Cholesterol
Review Confirms Links Between Diet, Heart Health
Relaxation Tapes or Mozart Lower Blood Pressure
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Surgical Masks Could Prevent Flu, Maybe
Dry Weather Boosts Odds of Flu Outbreaks
The HPV Vaccine: Preventative Medicine or Human Sacrifice?
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Most Depressed Teens Don't Get Treatment
Winter's Bitter Cold Poses Health Dangers
Teen Internet Addicts More Likely to Self-Harm: Study
MEN'S HEALTH
Eating Fast Until Full Triples Overweight Risk
Soy Linked to Low Sperm Count
Low Vitamin D Levels May Boost Men's Heart Attack Risk
MENTAL HEALTH
Have a Goal in Life? You Might Live Longer
Love Hormone May Ease Discussion of Painful Topics
The Acne Drug Accutane More Than Doubles Depression Risk
PAIN
Are We Exercising Pain Away? Not So Much.
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Alleviating Rheumatoid Arthritis
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Mom's Extra Pregnancy Pounds May Raise Child's Heart Risks
For Baby and Mom Alike, Breast-Feeding May Be Best
Heart Defects in Newborns Linked to Antidepressants
SENIORS
Living Alone Increases Odds of Developing Dementia
The Juice From Beetroots May Boost Stamina
Older Adults May Have Some Immunity to Swine Flu
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Daylight Savings: Not a Bright Time for All
6 to 8 Hours of Shut-Eye Is Optimal for Health
Pay Attention to Signs That Say You're Too Fatigued to Drive
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Calcium Helps Ward Off Colon Cancer
A Brisk Pace May Keep Stroke at Bay
Bitter Melon Extract May Slow, Stop Breast Cancer
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Calcium Supplements Cut Blood Lead Levels During Pregnancy

THURSDAY, Sept. 18 (HealthDay News) -- High daily doses of calcium supplements may reduce lead levels in the blood of pregnant women and cut down on fetal and infant exposure, a new report suggests.

The study, published online in Environmental Health Perspectives, found that women who take 1,200 milligrams of calcium daily have up to a 31 percent reduction in lead levels.

Women who used lead-glazed ceramics or with high bone lead levels showed the largest reductions, while the average reduction was about 11 percent.

"We and others have previously shown that during pregnancy, mothers can transfer lead from their bones to their unborn -- with significant adverse consequences -- making maternal bone lead stores a threat even if current environmental lead exposures are low," principal investigator Howard Hu, chairman of the University of Michigan's Department of Environmental Health Sciences, said in a news release issued by the school. "This study demonstrates that dietary calcium supplementation during pregnancy may constitute a low-cost and low-risk approach for reducing this threat."

Exposure to lead during fetal development and infancy can cause low birth weight or slow weight gain after birth, cognitive defects such as lower intelligence scores, lower motor and visual skills, or even miscarriage. Damage from lead exposure and poisoning is usually permanent, the researchers said.

Bone lead can stay in the body for decades, and the fetus or nursing infant can still be at great risk from maternal stores of lead even with minimal environmental exposure, the researchers said.

"The bottom line is that obstetricians and pediatricians should consider adding calcium supplementation to the prenatal vitamins normally recommended in pregnant women, particularly if their patients have a significant history of environmental or occupational lead exposure," Hu said.

The study, conducted with 557 mostly low- to moderate-income women recruited from Mexican prenatal clinics, found reductions in blood lead levels were more evident in the second trimester (14 percent) than in the third trimester (8 percent).

More information

The U.S. National Library of Medicine has more about lead poisoning.



-- Kevin McKeever



SOURCE: University of Michigan School of Public Health, news release, Sept. 10, 2008

Last Updated: Sept. 18, 2008

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