Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Lean Cuisine Recall: Details on Specific Products Involved

Close to 900,000 pounds of Lean Cuisine frozen chicken meals are being recalled because they may contain small pieces of hard blue plastic. Nestle, the owner of Lean Cuisine, issues the recall after receiving a half dozen or so complaints from consumers.

An article on WebMD lists the products involved in the Lean Cuisine recall and gives the toll-free phone number to call with questions (800-227-6188). Lean Cuisine has also set up a Web site,, with updates on the recall.

The affected products are listed below, but not all of these products are being recalled; check the Web site to see which product codes are involved in the Lean Cuisine recall.

LEAN CUISINE Café Classics Pesto Chicken with Bow Tie Pasta
LEAN CUISINE Spa Cuisine Chicken Mediterranean
LEAN CUISINE Dinnertime Selects Chicken Tuscan

Monday, November 17, 2008

Burlington, Vermont Named America's Healthiest City

Burlington, Vermont has been named the healthiest city in the United States in a study conducted for the Centers for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC).

Both towns are home to colleges and both have mostly white populations, but beyond that there are more differences than similarities. Burlington's citizens are younger, wealthier, and better educated than their counterparts in Huntington. Eight percent of Burlington's population lives at the Federal poverty level; in Huntington, the figure is 19 percent.

Vermont is home to skiing and other winter sports, of course, but Burlington residents are also enthusiastic participants in activities such as bicycling, hiking, and walking. And there are groups in the town that encourage maintenance of parks, walkways, etc.

At the University of Vermont you can find students eating the traditional college fare of pizza and snack foods, but Burlington, like many places in Vermont, also has plenty of healthier options such as organic and vegan food.

Burlington has been getting good press for other reasons, too: it was the focus of a recent Wall Street Journal article that detailed why the city has become popular as a destination for retired people to settle.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Study Shows Statins Benefit Low-Cholesterol Patients

A new study has shown that common cholesterol-lowering drugs called statins can dramatically reduce the incidence of cardiovascular events in patients who already have low cholesterol.

The study, called Jupiter, examined about 18,000 healthy men and women who had normal cholesterol levels but higher-than-normal levels of a type of C-reactive protein (CRP), a substance that's a marker of inflammation in the bloodstream, and which has been linked to heart disease.

Jupiter used the commonly used statin drug Crestor, was planned as a four-year test but was stopped after less than two because of the remarkable results. The study, which was funded by the maker of Crestor (Astra-Zeneca), was presented at a meeting of the American Heart Association and appears in The New England Journal of Medicine (Nov. 20th issue).

The significance of the study is that many heart attacks (as many as half of them) take place in people who don't have high LDL (so-called "bad") cholesterol levels or other risk factors for heart disease.

But some experts caution that Crestor and other statins have side effects, and that people should try to lower their risk for heart disease through other means such as diet and exercise before going on a medication that can be expensive and which they may need to take the rest of their lives.

In light of the Jupiter study, WebMD has prepared an article with Crestor questions and answers.