HEALTH

GSK survey finds smokers uninformed about treatments for quitting

BY Michael Johnsen

PORTLAND, Ore. A new GlaxoSmithKline survey presented before the annual meeting of the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco on Saturday revealed that smokers’ misperceptions about cessation treatments may prevent them from attempting to quit smoking.

The study’s findings indicate smokers dramatically underestimate the safety and efficacy of nicotine replacement therapy products for quitting smoking, which may lead to less use of proven smoking cessation therapy.

Three of every four smokers wrongly believe or do not know whether NRT is more addictive than cigarettes. Additionally, 68 percent of smokers wrongly answered or do not know whether NRT products are as dangerous as cigarettes. Less than 3 percent of respondents answered all questions about treatment correctly, demonstrating the need for further education.

The findings were based on a study of 900 men and women adult smokers in the U.S. that was fielded in July 2007 by Richard Day Research through an online panel, screening for adults age 18 and over who smoke cigarettes every day. The “average” respondent in the survey was 48 years of age and started smoking when they were 16 years old, smoked 20 cigarettes per day and has tried to quit three times in the past (16 percent of respondents have never tried to quit). The survey was conducted on behalf of The American Legacy Foundation and GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare.

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HEALTH

Study shows only strict compliance to ginko biloba regimen has effect

BY Michael Johnsen

BALTIMORE Neurology, the official journal of the American Academy of Neurology, on Wednesday published a study that found that ginkgo biloba extract neither altered the risk of progression from normal to clinical dementia rating, nor protected against a decline in memory function unless those supplementing with gingko were strictly compliant with a regimen of gingko.

In addition, more stroke and transient ischaemic attacks were observed among the group supplementing with ginkgo biloba, which may necessitate further study to confirm the findings, study authors suggested.

The randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind, 42-month pilot study was conducted in 188 cognitively-intact subjects 85 and older. The amount of ginkgo used to supplement was not disclosed in the published abstract.

In a secondary analysis, where study authors controlled the medication adherence level, the group supplementing with gingko did have a lower risk of progression from normal to clinical dementia rating, and a smaller decline in memory scores.

“Results of larger prevention trials taking into account medication adherence may clarify the effectiveness of [gingko supplementation],” study authors concluded. “[And] more stroke and TIA cases observed among the GBE group requires further study to confirm.”

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Tahitian Noni Juice with Acerola available in limited edition

BY Michael Johnsen

PROVO, Utah Tahitian Noni International, on Thursday announced the availability of a limited edition super fruit blend of Tahitian Noni Juice with Acerola, a juice that combines the benefits of noni with Acerola for an immune boost.

“Tahitian Noni Juice is the No. 1 selling noni-juice product in the world,” stated Shon Whitney, vice president of marketing for Tahitian Noni International. “This new flavor addition will give people the refreshing taste of Acerola and provide another reason to drink Tahitian Noni Juice for those who are looking for a high source of natural vitamin C.”

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