I always thought the Mediterranean diet was just another name for the DASH diet, but how wrong I was. It is, in fact, the new and improved DASH diet, now with added garlic and omega-3-containing fish, and with less sodium. Another way of improving the DASH diet is by replacing some of its recommended carbohydrate intake with either protein (of which 50% should be from plant sources) or unsaturated fat (especially olives/olive oil, which contain monounsaturated fat), thereby reducing CHD risk even further, as discovered by the OMNIHeart trial, not to be confused with the Omnitrix (sorry – no longer beseiged by Ben 10 but still have it on the brain).
Lifestyle changes can also be helpful in managing gastro-oesophageal reflux, but unfortunately this article was about the feasibility of setting up a group intervention to teach patients how to do this and not so much in handing out the actual advice. It seems we should be advising patients to space eating times, not go too long between meals, and carry snacks. Also, of course, the usual advice about avoiding caffeine/spicy foods/hot drinks/overeating.
I wrote about gout in the last post I put up – another point to add is to remember the association it has with elevated cardiovascuar risk. Maybe worth checking those fasting lipids and glucose along with the renal function and urate?
Pages 916 – 23 are a review article about respiratory tract infections, covering, among other things, the research explaining why it’s perfectly appropriate
not to dish out antibiotics for sore throats and earaches at the drop of a hat. Not that this makes a difference to me as I already greet people without co-morbidities with a ‘you can have the antibiotics when you prise them from my cold dead fingers’ attitude, but I include this as it’s occasionally useful to be able to lay ones hand on the references that justify this. (OK, when I say ‘occasionally useful’ the last time it actually came up was when I was doing my paediatrics job back in 2001 – but, hey, if only I’d had this article then…) Oh, and there’s apparently a summary of non-antibiotic treatments on the on-line version, which I will get to as soon as I manage to track down my login details. Or get some login details.