ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Keep Asthma, Allergies at Bay for the Holidays
Air Pollution May Raise Blood Pressure
Folic Acid Might Offer Allergy Relief
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Taking the Mystery Out of Hypnotherapy
Wristbands May Lessen Nausea After Radiation
Regular Yoga May Improve Eating Habits
ANIMAL CARE
Animals Respond to Acupuncture's Healing Touch
Safe Toys for Dogs
'Comfort Dogs' Come to Emotional Rescue
BONES & JOINTS
Fall Sports Peak Time for Lower Leg Damage
High Birth Weight Doubles Risk of Rheumatoid Arthritis
Healthy adults have potential autoimmune disease-causing cells
CANCER
Gene Studies Reveal Cancer's Secrets
Multiple Screening Strategy Boosts Cervical Cancer Detection
Healthy Behaviors Slow Functional Decline After Cancer
CAREGIVING
Caring for Aging Loved Ones Can Be a Catch-22
More Than 60,000 Patients Risked Hepatitis Infections
Baby's Sleep Position May Not Affect Severity of Head Flattening
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Anemia Rates Down for U.S. Women and Children
Bye, Bye Back Fat?
Support Network May Play Role in Benefits of Drinking
COSMETIC
Science May Banish Bad Hair Days
Study Evaluates Laser Therapies for Hair Removal
Gum Chewing May Cut Craving for Snacks
DENTAL, ORAL
Study Links Osteoporosis Drugs to Jaw Trouble
Acid Drinks Blamed for Increase in Tooth Erosion
Good Oral Hygiene May Protect Against Heart Infections
DIABETES
Fructose-Sweetened Drinks Up Metabolic Syndrome Risk
Findings Challenge Tight Glucose Control for Critically Ill Patients
Older Diabetics With Depression Face Higher Death Rate
DIET, NUTRITION
Folic Acid Might Offer Allergy Relief
Eating Healthy : You Can Live Longer
Diet, Exercise May Slow Kidney Disease Progression
DISABILITIES
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Environmental Chemicals May Affect Male Reproduction
Restaurant Sushi May Have More Mercury Than Store-Bought Fare
Air Pollution Raises Risk of Heart Disease, Death
EYE CARE, VISION
Gene-Transfer Proves Safe for Vision Problem
Antioxidant-Rich Diet May Protect Against Eye Disease
Eye Test Could Spot Diabetes Vision Trouble Early
FITNESS
Vigorous Exercise Can Cut Breast Cancer Risk
Walk Long, Slow and Often to Help the Heart
Maximize Your Run
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
New Yogurt May Ease Stomach Ulcers
Soothing Imagery May Help Rid Some Kids of Stomach Pain
HRT Use Raises Risk of Stomach Trouble
GENERAL HEALTH
Want to Stop Cancer? You Can, Experts Say
Whole Grains, Bran May Fight Hypertension in Men
Can You Talk Your Way to Happy?
HEAD & NECK
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
The Internet Is Becoming One-Stop Shopping for Health Help
Subway Defibrillators Save Lives
Study Suggests Link Between Cell Phones and Brain Tumors
HEARING
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Dark Chocolate May Lower Stroke Risk
Kids With Vitamin D Deficiency Linked to Heart Trouble
Fewer Heart Attacks After England Goes Smoke-Free
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Bacterial Infections May Succumb to Honey
More Medicinal Uses for Pomegranate
Surgical Masks Could Prevent Flu, Maybe
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Mom and Baby Alike May Benefit From Exercise
Music May Temper Pain in Preemies
Exercise During Pregnancy Keeps Newborn Size Normal
MEN'S HEALTH
Varicose Veins May Mask Larger Problem
Strenuous Daily Workout May Keep Cancer at Bay
Physical Activity May Prolong Survival After Colon Cancer
MENTAL HEALTH
Most Depressed Teens Don't Get Treatment
Bullying Seems to Affect Kids Years Later
Breast-Fed Baby May Mean Better Behaved Child
PAIN
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Are We Exercising Pain Away? Not So Much.
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Exercise Boosts Bone Density in Breast-Feeding Moms
Expectant Mom's Exercise Keeps Newborn's Birth Weight Down
Breast-Feeding Benefits Moms and Babies
SENIORS
Seniors Who Volunteer May Live Longer
Save Your Aging Brain, Try Surfing The Web
For Older Walkers, Faster Is Better
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
6 to 8 Hours of Shut-Eye Is Optimal for Health
Moderate Aerobics May Ease Insomnia Symptoms
Exercising Throat Muscles May Relieve Sleep Apnea
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Exercise As Well As Acupuncture, May Ease Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
Most Women With Osteoporosis Unaware of Raised Fracture Risk
Steady Weight Gain Boosts Late-Life Breast Cancer Risk
Add your Article

Gas Cooking Might Up Your Cancer Risk

Slaving over a hot stove -- make that a hot gas stove -- might raise your risk for certain types of cancer.

Researchers in Norway have found that cooking with gas produces more potentially harmful fumes than electric cooking.

But, in a report published online Feb. 17 in Occupational and Environmental Medicine, they also point out that professional chefs and cooks are more at risk than the average at-home cook.

"The risk to average at-home cookers is low, at least under Norwegian conditions, where most homes have a kitchen exhaust fan," said study author Ann Kristin Sjaastad, who's with the industrial economics and technology management department in the division of health environment and safety at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim. "Yes, professional chefs/cooks are most at risk, but further studies are necessary to estimate their risk level."

The International Agency for Research on Cancer has classified cooking fumes from frying at high temperatures as "probably carcinogenic." The fumes have been found to contain polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), heterocyclic amines, higher and mutated aldehydes, and fine and ultrafine particles.

But a remaining question has been what role, if any, does the energy source -- gas or electric-- or type of fat used in frying play in producing the fumes.

The researchers created a kitchen typical of those in Western European restaurants, measuring 19 square meters (62 feet) and containing both a gas stove and an electric stove with a canopy hood.

They fried 17 pieces of beefsteak, each weighing about a pound, in both margarine and soya bean oil for 15 minutes. The only PAH found was napthalene (now banned, but once found in mothballs), most notably when frying with margarine on a gas stove, according to the report.

The highest levels of all compounds, including ultrafine particles that more easily penetrate the lungs, were produced while frying with gas.

However, even the higher levels of particles found in the study were below accepted occupational safety thresholds. But the researchers noted that cooking fumes contain various other harmful components for which there is as yet no clear safety threshold and that gas cooking seems to increase exposure to these components.

Regardless of the level of risk, cooks should follow certain "safe cooking" guidelines, said Dr. Lisa Ganjhu, an attending physician in the division of gastroenterology and liver diseases at St. Luke's-Roosevelt Hospital in New York City.

That means don't barbeque or char meat, don't overheat the oil because that increases the level of toxins in the food, do use a drip pan so that grilling fat doesn't touch the fire, make sure the exhaust fan is on and microwave meat before it's grilled.

"In their homes, people can make sure that they have a powerful exhaust fan, preferably one that is vented directly to the outside and does not have a charcoal filter, Sjaastad emphasized. "Also, the fan must be run on the highest level of capacity to be efficient. Suction is improved if the fan is placed between two walls, between two cupboards or up to a corner. It is also very important to let the fan run for 15 minutes after you're done cooking. In addition, people may reduce the amount of pan frying, for instance, by frying their steak shortly in the pan at first, and then bake it in the oven until it is finished."

SOURCES: Lisa Ganjhu, D.O., attending physician, division of gastroenterology and liver diseases, St. Luke's-Roosevelt Hospital, and assistant professor, clinical medicine, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York City; Ann Kristin Sjaastad, Ph.D., department of industrial economics and technology management, division of health environment and safety, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway; Feb. 17, 2010, Occupational and Environmental Medicine, online Published on: February 19, 2010