HEALTH

Yakult available in Central Calif., Bay Area

BY Michael Johnsen

TORRANCE, Calif. After a successful launch in Southern California, Tokyo-based consumer products company Yakult Honsha on Tuesday announced that it is expanding distribution of its probiotic beverage Yakult. Yakult is now available in mainstream grocery chains in Central California as well as the San Francisco Bay Area, including Raley’s, Nob Hill Foods, Bel Air Market and Save Mart.

Yakult was first launched in California toward the end of third-quarter 2007. Previously, it was solely distributed through Asian and Hispanic grocery stores due to Yakult’s popularity among these populations.

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GSK applauds updated PHS guidlines for quitting smoking

BY Michael Johnsen

PARSIPPANY, N.J. GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare on Wednesday released a statement commending the updated 2008 U.S. Public Health Service Guideline on Treating Tobacco Use and Dependence.

“Too many smokers lower their chances of quitting by relying on cold turkey approaches to become tobacco-free,” GSK stated. “The Guideline is an important validation of the need for clinicians to recommend the use of effective tobacco dependence counseling and medication [and] reflects considerable progress in tobacco cessation research over the past decade to help identify the most effective strategies at reducing tobacco dependence.”

The updated guideline reflects the distillation of thousands of research articles, and continues to recommend nicotine replacement products as a first-line therapy for quitting, as they “increase significantly rates of long-term smoking abstinence.”

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Study suggests link between vitamin D deficiency and depression

BY Michael Johnsen

CHICAGO According to a study published in the May edition of the Archives of General Psychiatry, depression has been linked to a vitamin D deficiency in older adults.

The Netherlands study examined 1,282 community residents between the ages of 65 years and 95 years.

Levels of vitamin D were 14 percent lower in 169 persons with minor depression, as well as in 26 persons with major depressive order.

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