HEALTH

FDA approves Bayer Diabetes Care’s Contour USB blood glucose meter

BY DSN STAFF

NEW YORK It’s not wireless, but that doesn’t necessarily matter — the significance of a product like this is in its enhanced track and chart functionalities.

 

First, there are no more points of differentiation, not really, in blood glucose meters in the mind of the consumer. There are no more alternate sites once you’ve gotten a meter approved for alternate site testing. Sure, maybe you can take the amount of blood required for a measurement down another hundredth of a microliter or so. Or maybe you can reduce the time between supplying your meter with a sample and actual test result by a second or so. But in either case, will the end-consumer really notice?

 

So that means future points of differentiation among blood glucose meters need to improve the ability to effectively use testing datapoints in the management of diabetes. And because Type 1 diabetics are likelier to track and chart their blood glucose readings more so than Type 2 diabetics (which incidentally is by far the larger market), that means making the tracking and charting easier. What’s easier than plugging your meter into the side of your computer for automatic data transfer in today’s wired world?

Plugging your meter into the side of your doctor’s computer. That’s the other advantage to a meter equipped with a UBS data port, the data’s easily portable. And that’s a POD that not even a wireless meter can match today, and won’t be able to match until the day electronic medical records accessed by doctors becomes commonplace.

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Research center finds dairy-free probiotic

BY Michael Johnsen

DUBLIN, Ireland Researchers at the Ashtown Food Research Centre in Dublin, Ireland, may have found a dairy-free alternative to probiotic-rich yogurt in apples, according to new research published earlier this month in Innovative Food Science and Emerging Technologies.

The aim of the study was to apply a probiotic microorganism (Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG) to fresh-cut apple wedges and measure entrapment and stability of the microorganism.

Researchers also monitored if application of the probiotic significantly influenced eating quality.

The result — a potential new candidate for probiotic supplementation that “will provide an alternative probiotic food choice for consumers and could be particularly appealing to children,” according to Christian Rossle, lead researcher. “Minimally processed freshly prepared fruits are a popular item and are perceived as healthy by consumers. They are therefore an ideal vehicle for incorporation of other functional components such as probiotics.” Rossle envisions the probiotic-enriched apples would retail from conventional chill counters of supermarket stores.

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Survey finds families missing out on nutrients

BY Michael Johnsen

EDISON, N.J. Nearly 50% of respondents to a survey about dietary supplement habits feel that they or their families are missing out on essential nutrients in their daily diets, and the majority, 63%, believe they are missing omega-3s, essential fatty acids.

“Supplementation is an important option to help Americans achieve the nutrients they need in order to reduce the impact of chronic conditions such as cardiovascular disease,” stated Joseph Brasco of the Center for Colon and Digestive Disease. “It is essential that the public be provided with simple and easy-to-understand information about purity and the source of product, appropriate dosing and how and when to add supplements to a healthy diet so that we can better use nutrition to stave off disease.”

However, even as consumers are aware they are missing omega 3s from their diet, only 26% of consumers and their families take a fish oil, a good source of omega 3 fatty acids. Cost, lack of perceived need and confusion are primary barriers for consumers when deciding to take dietary supplements, such as fish oil.

Of those who take fish oil supplements as an additional source for omega 3 fatty acids, 94% look for assurances of purity as the most important factor when choosing a particular supplement.

The survey was conducted by Equation Research on behalf of Croda, an ingredient manufacturer of omega 3 fish and plant oil concentrates.

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