The psychiatric implications of thyroid disease

Both hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism can cause psychotic symptoms such as delusions and hallucinations, plus depression

The psychiatric implications of thyroid diseasePsychiatric conditions such as depression and anxiety disorders are often mistaken for physical illnesses because of shared or confusing symptoms. Making a correct diagnosis can be tricky. But sometimes the situation is reversed – a physical illness is mistaken for a psychiatric one due to overlapping symptoms. One excellent example occurs in the presence of…

Don’t turn away when you see potential for suicide in others

As many as 90% of people who commit suicide experience depression, substance abuse or other mental health disorders

Don’t turn away when you see potential for suicide in othersSuicide is the darkest and most tragic face of mental illness – but we can reach out and help. When a person cuts his or her own life short out of desperation to end mental and emotional suffering, there is little that can comfort families and loved ones. One in 25 Canadians will attempt suicide during their…

Schizophrenia a frightening and misunderstood disease

Schizophrenia, which affects one per cent of the population, is the result of an organic problem in the brain

Schizophrenia a frightening and misunderstood diseaseSchizophrenia is a frightening disease that is not well understood. Although it has been well characterized in some movies such as A Beautiful Mind, this illness is more often thought of in vague and uncertain terms. Some would say they think a person with schizophrenia is ‘crazy’, or that they have multiple personalities, or that…

Canada’s Food Guide is a good first step but more must be done

We need clear warning labels on the front of unhealthy food products and legislation that protects children from marketing

Canada’s Food Guide is a good first step but more must be doneBy Andrew Pipe and Yves Savoie Heart & Stroke The new Canada’s Food Guide has the potential to help challenge the impact of diet on Canadians’ health. But more must be done to realize that potential. The updated version of this vital document, the first such major change to the Food Guide since 2007, has been…

Food inspectors getting tough on olive oil fraud

Food fraud affects many food categories, but stakes are a little higher with olive oil due to potential allergens in substitute ingredients

Food inspectors getting tough on olive oil fraudOlive production in Italy was hard hit last year due to an early frost. The country’s production dropped by 57 per cent. Greece and Portugal suffered similar fates, along with pest issues, and saw their production drop by 35 and 15 per cent, respectively. Short food supplies generate economically-motivated adulteration, that is, adding a inferior…

Psychiatric links at the heart of fibromyalgia’s pain

Psychiatric symptoms commonly associated with fibromyalgia make the condition worse for those who experience pain and depression or anxiety

Psychiatric links at the heart of fibromyalgia’s painFibromyalgia has stumped health-care professionals for years. Patients experience chronic and sometimes excruciating pain with no obvious physical reason. It's long been understood that fibromyalgia is somehow connected with co-existing psychiatric conditions. New research has examined this relationship more closely. Fibromyalgia is the existence of widespread pain throughout the body. In order to be diagnosed…

Drinking the plant-based diet kool-aid

Canada’s Food Guide plant-based diet is, for the most part, elitist. Many of us can't indulge because of a lack of access, affordability or convenience

Drinking the plant-based diet kool-aidWhen the prestigious medical journal The Lancet published a 51-page report recently laying out a plan for a sustainable “planetary diet” that transforms how we eat and live, it made a big splash. The group of 37 experts, all members of the EAT-Lancet Commission, were keen to recognize the urgent need to change our diets…

Canada’s Food Guide: New dish, with a dash of condescension   

After years of celebrating our agricultural know-how, the guide has gone urban – and is more than a little patronizing

Canada’s Food Guide: New dish, with a dash of condescension   Say goodbye to the four food groups. Almost 12 years after the launch of the previous version, the new Canada’s Food Guide celebrates food by displaying a plate filled with greens, fruits, plant proteins and grains. And if you look very carefully, you’ll see a cup of yogurt alongside a piece of beef that looks…

Genetic modification a crucial tool in feeding the world

Scientists have found no negative differences in the health of people eating GM and non-GM foods

Genetic modification a crucial tool in feeding the worldThe changing environment means we face weather patterns that haven’t been seen in generations. And that means new challenges in feeding humanity. But we have the tools. Storms and floods are more frequent and widespread. Changing temperatures affect oceans and lands, wildlife and crops. Because we haven’t seen such changes before, we often don’t know…

Advice for pregnant women with psychiatric illnesses

Although there are potential risks involved with taking medication, there are very real risks if important psychiatric medication is stopped

Advice for pregnant women with psychiatric illnesses  Women with psychiatric conditions enter into murky territory when it comes to making decisions about their treatment during pregnancy. As a general rule, women are advised not to take any medications during pregnancy and for many this is not a big sacrifice. Forgoing the use of aspirin or cold medication might make for a…