Homeopathic Asthma Meds Called into Question
Over-the-counter asthma medications labeled as “homeopathic” may seem beneficial, but the FDA suggests buyer beware. These medications — some of which even purport to treat acute asthma symptoms — have not been evaluated by the FDA for safety and effectiveness.
Weather Changes Affect Asthma Symptoms
Cold air and even weather changes like thunderstorms can aggravate asthma, says a physician with the Mississippi Asthma and Allergy Clinic. The best way to combat the problem: keep your asthma under good control so you’ll be better able to handle the changes.
Debunking the Hygiene Hypothesis
The “hygiene hypothesis” suggests today’s children are more likely to develop asthma and allergies because they live in cleaner environments with less exposure to beneficial microorganisms. German researchers question that theory. Their study found no difference in the incidence of asthma, hay fever, or atopic eczema between children living in cleaner and less clean environments. The investigators did find, however, that kids exposed to a wider variety of bacteria were less likely to develop these conditions, leading them to conclude it is the type of bacteria that matters — not how clean the house is.
New Thinking on Peanut Allergy
New research is turning the conventional wisdom about peanut allergy on its ear. Researchers have found that babies considered at high risk for peanut allergy were 80% less likely to develop it if they were fed four heaping teaspoons of peanut butter per week. Doctors, however, caution against taking matters into your own hands: treatment must be individualized to each child, so consult your physician before trying this at home.
Don't Blame Geography
Inner city living isn’t the real culprit in the rise in asthma, report Johns Hopkins researchers who looked at asthma rates in various populations across the country. They found suburban and rural areas that had just as high asthma rates. Further examination of the results revealed race, ethnicity, and income are what really make the difference.