Saturday, December 12, 2009

10 Most Suggestive Cacti On Earth

Today, we’d like to take a look at a plant that is especially close to our, er, hearts – the cactus! The following pictures will prove that this prickly green friend can be quite a source of amusement.This red cactus is apparently common in Yucatan and even said to have, er, enhancing properties if boiled and eaten as a soup. Right…The next specimen belongs to the Cephalocereus gaumeri species and is often referred to as “old man” cactus, because of the white wool on top looking like long white hairs – not what you’re thinking. The limp things hanging down from the cactus fruits are flower remains. Maybe it’s not a cactus man after all?
What this cactus seems to have too much of …
… this one seems to lack. Little blue pills, anyone?
It’ll take some balls to come out of hiding:
Tom, Dick and Harry playing the same old tune…

There has been conflicting evidence as to whether soy foods increase breast cancer risks or reduce the chances of breast cancer. With soy products of all kinds gaining in popularity, women are concerned about consumption when they are at risk of or have experienced breast cancer. Now, there is new evidence indicating soy foods may actually benefit women that eat moderate amounts by reducing their risk of breast cancer recurrence and lower their risk of death.

Because soy contains isoflavone, an estrogen-like compound which in labs seemed to help cancer cells to grow and increase tumor growth in animals, many breast cancer patients have worried that by eating soy products they may be increasing their odds of recurrence or death. However, based on a new study published in the December 9th issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, there seems to be no reason for breast cancer patients to avoid soy foods.

The lead author of the newly released study, Dr. Xiao Ou Shu, a professor of medicine at Vanderbilt University, and her colleagues used data from the Shanghai Breast Cancer Survival Study that consisted of 5,042 Chinese women ranging in age from 20 to 75 that had been diagnosed with breast cancer between March 2002 and April 2006, for their study. The group examined data on cancer progression at six months following a breast cancer diagnosis, and again at 18, 36, and 60 months following the diagnosis. The group considered the cancer diagnosis, treatment, and lifestyle factors of the patients, including their diets.

Dr. Shu said, “There was a linear response, and we found the higher the intake, the lower the mortality, up to 11 grams of soy protein.” One-fourth of a cup of tofu daily would grant someone 11grams of soy protein, according to Dr. Shu. The study found the group of women with the highest intake of soy products had a 29 percent lower risk of death, and a 32 percent less chance of suffering a recurrence of breast cancer, when compared to the group of ladies that consumed less than 5.3 grams of soy daily during the study.

Dr. Shu said, “Some doctors have advised women not to eat soy foods…. But another school of physicians think it’s safe. So it has been controversial. Our findings are important because, nowadays, it’s very difficult to avoid soy exposure. Soy flour and soy protein has been added to many foods in this country. Women may consume it and not even know it.”

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