HEALTH

Trouble sleeping? Vicks reveals why Americans are tossing and turning at night

BY Michael Johnsen

CINCINNATI – Nearly 9 in 10 Americans (87%) say they have experienced trouble falling asleep, according to a new survey from Vicks ZzzQuil released Monday.

In fact, two-thirds (67%) of Americans state they have trouble falling asleep at least once a month and nearly half (47%) report that they experience this trouble at least once a week. Stress related to family life tops the list of things that keep Americans up at night, with 41% saying family stress prevents them from falling asleep easily, outweighing financial concerns (32%). And almost one-third of Americans (30%) say they have had trouble falling asleep easily because of an experience or interaction with their boss.

“Whether it’s work, family, finances or being connected to devices, we know that sometimes life just keeps you up,” stated Paul Gama, VP North America Personal Health Care, Procter & Gamble. “With nearly one-in-two Americans experiencing trouble falling asleep at least once a week, it is clear that people are not alone in their quest for a good night’s sleep. We want people to know that there is an easy solution, like ZzzQuil, that can help them fall asleep in as little as 20 minutes to get the rest they need.”

Contrary to popular sleep advice, many Americans turn to their devices when they can’t fall asleep. More than a third (36%) report that they log on when they can’t nod off, whether it be surfing the internet (26%), checking or posting on social media (19%) or checking/sending emails (15%).

Additional findings from the survey reveal that of those who tried a sleep-aid, four-in-five (80%) report that a sleeping aid helped them fall asleep more easily and stay asleep all night. On the other hand, less than half of those who tried idealistic approaches had success, with only 46% of those who tried using calming scents in the bedroom and 45% of those who tried drinking hot tea reporting that it helped them fall asleep more easily and stay asleep all night.

ZzzQuil commissioned a survey, conducted online by Harris Poll in December 2016 among more than 2,000 U.S. adults, to better understand how Americans are sleeping and uncover the realistic and idealistic approaches they may take to catch those highly-coveted zzzs.
 

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Clinical trials: Pharma grade chondroitin sulfate effective treatment for osteoarthritis

BY Michael Johnsen

MADRID — The latest published evidence on osteoarthritis treatment was presented Wednesday at the symposium organized by Bioiberica and IBSA at the Annual European Congress of Rheumatology, here.

A new clinical trial, carried out by IBSA and called CONCEPT (ChONdroitin vs CElecoxib vs Placebo Trial), shows that pharmaceutical grade chondroitin sulfate is as effective as an anti-inflammatory drug (celecoxib) and superior to placebo for pain reduction and improvement of functional disability in patients with knee osteoarthritis.

“A great controversy still exists as to which should be the treatment of choice for osteoarthritis. Analgesics and anti-inflammatory drugs have traditionally been used, but they are increasingly associated to toxicity warnings," stated Tomasz Blicharski, from the Department of Rehabilitation and Traumatology of Lublin University (Poland)  and investigator of the study. "This trial has provided statistically significant evidence that treatment with pharmaceutical grade chondroitin sulfate is an effective and safe alternative for long-term treatment of patients with knee osteoarthritis.”

A multicenter, randomized, double blind, controlled and comparative study, conducted by Bioiberica and named MOSAIC (24 MOnth study on Structural changes in knee osteoarthritis Assessed by mrI with Chondroitin sulfate), carried out in five medical centers in Quebec (Canada), shows that chondroitin sulfate delays the disease’s progression and is as effective as celecoxib improving osteoarthritis symptoms.

The study recruited 194 patients suffering from knee osteoarthritis with inflammation and moderate pain, to assess the effects of chondroitin sulfate (1,200 mg/ day) and celecoxib (200 mg/ day) over the loss of cartilage volume in knee osteoarthritis after 24 months. The participants underwent three Quantitative Magnetic Resonance scans and the results revealed that the progression of knee osteoarthritis is slower in patients receiving chondroitin sulfate.

More precisely, this group experienced a statistically significant lower loss of cartilage volume as soon as after the first year of treatment, in comparison with those patients who received the anti inflammatory drug.

The study also evaluated the effects of both products on the disease’s symptoms concluding that both treatments were equally efficient across the entire study, reaching a clinically relevant symptom improvement of around 50%.

“All this latest evidence presented today proves that chondroitin sulfate complies with the requirements that an osteoarthritis treatment must fulfill: it improves pain and functional capacity, and it delays the disease’s progression while having a good safety profile, something essential in a chronic disease such as osteoarthritis,” concluded Jean Pierre Pelletier, main investigator of the MOSAIC study.
 

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CRN, AHPA to promote VMS with summertime ‘Day on the Hill’

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON — The Council for Responsible Nutrition and the American Herbal Products Association on Monday announced a cooperative advocacy effort for June 21. The event will bring together industry executives from across the country to visit with Congressional members and their staff to discuss the benefits of dietary supplements and functional food, the importance of industry’s products to their constituents’ health and wellness and the economic impact of the industry.

“The fly-in is a time-honored tradition for associations and is an integral part of ensuring industry is heard by elected officials on Capitol Hill,” stated Steve Mister, president and CEO, CRN. “This is CRN’s 14th consecutive advocacy event, and we’re pleased to team-up with AHPA this year. Congress has long been asking industry to speak with a unified voice and this year’s partnered event is a way to demonstrate that we’re ready to tear down our silos and come together for the good of the industry — and our consumers.”

“Partnering with CRN for this event amplifies our collective voice and demonstrates a strong, unified industry that is committed to building productive relationships with members of Congress and their staff,” added Michael McGuffin, president, AHPA. “The more voices singing from the same songbook makes it that much easier to be heard, and we’re looking forward to joining the choir with CRN.”

Day on the Hill attendees spend a full day conducting face-to-face meetings with Congressional offices, including members of the Energy and Commerce Committee, the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions and other offices and committees relevant to manufacturers and ingredient suppliers of dietary supplements and functional food. This year’s event adds appropriations and tax committees to the schedule because of pending legislation to properly fund FDA and to expand pre-tax healthcare expenditures.

According to Mister and McGuffin, the fly-in encourages the associations’ member companies to take an active role in advocating for reasonable regulation and to put a face on the responsible dietary supplement industry.

Specifically, the two associations intend to highlight the following issues and priorities with members of Congress and their staff:

  • Support legislation that would allow consumers to purchase dietary supplements using their health savings accounts or flexible spending accounts;
  • Request Congress provide adequate funding for, and support of, FDA’s new Office of Dietary Supplement Programs;
  • Advocate for legislation that would permit low-income Americans to use Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits to purchase a multivitamin supplement;
  • Support the Botanical Sciences and Native Plant Materials Research, Restoration and Promotion Act;
  • Demonstrate industry’s proactive involvement in self-regulatory efforts, such as the Supplement OWL and Good Agricultural and Collections Practices for botanicals; and
  • Inspire Congressional participation in the bipartisan, bicameral Dietary Supplement Caucus.

“It makes sense to join forces with AHPA, as both trade associations advocate for reasonable solutions that enable the industry to innovate and grow while serving the interests of the more than 170 million Americans who take dietary supplements,” noted Mike Greene, SVP government relations, CRN. “We want to demonstrate to Congress that industry wants to work together, and partnering with AHPA is a great way to show we’re serious about getting things done. There’s power in numbers, and CRN’s voice, coupled with AHPA’s, takes this fly-in to a new and more impactful level.”

In conjunction with the CRN/AHPA Day on the Hill, the Dietary Supplement Caucus, the bipartisan group of House and Senate members who work to raise congressional awareness of supplements and the laws and regulations governing the industry, is hosting a luncheon briefing for congressional staffers. The luncheon will feature guest speaker Christie Pearce, Olympic gold medalist and World Cup champion for soccer. DSC briefings provide an opportunity for members of Congress and their staff to learn more about the role dietary supplements play in supporting health and wellness.

 

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