From eNewsletter 8/21/2019
DID YOU KNOW that Steve just completed a review study of the latest research on time-restricted feeding (TRF), a popular intermittent fasting technique?
You can read the entire study here or it is summarized for you below.
TRF is a fasting method where one eats within a finite window of time, usually within a 6 to 8 hour period. For example, you can eat your meals between 10AM and 6PM (8 hours) or 12PM and 6PM (6 hours). The rest of the 16 to 18 hours are fasting. Water is fine. SUMMARY: The data supports the idea that TRF has a beneficial impact on multiple health outcomes in men. In order to fully support TRF, however, researchers will need to perform more studies, with larger populations of men and especially women, and for much longer periods of time than what currently exists. It would make sense to pinpoint the ideal number of fasting hours, which is likely to be 16 hours, based upon the majority of research to date. That said, TRF has exciting potential as a technique not just to treat weight issues, but numerous maladies affecting the world's population. CAVEATS: Do not try TRF on your own. Please work with a licensed health professional. TRF is contraindicated in those with blood sugar disorders, especially type 1 and type 2 diabetes.
Until the TRF research is more substantive, Bonnie wants a small serving of protein eaten every morning (usually around the 12 hour mark).
MOST NEW DRUGS HAVE NO EVIDENCE OF ADDED BENEFIT
Steve & Bonnie: Most new drugs entering the market provide no additional benefit over and above the existing standard of care, and cost Western nations billions, according to studies from British Medical Journal and Annals of Internal Medicine.
In the Annals study, Medicare could have saved close to $17 billion from 2011-2017 by substituting 12 older drugs (racemic precursors) for newer single-enantiomer drugs, and patients could have saved more than $1 billion in out-of-pocket costs.
According to the lead author, "we undertook this study to better understand a clinical situation we were observing all too frequently in clinical practice: patients being prescribed more expensive, branded single-enantiomer drugs when less expensive, generic versions of their racemic precursors are available for use."
In the BMJ study, investigators found that only 25% of the 216 new drugs entering the German market between 2011 and 2017 were judged to have a considerable, or major, added benefit. For 16% of these new agents, this additional benefit was either minor or could not be quantified. In addition, for 58% of these medications there was no proof of added benefit versus standard of care in the approved patient population. The field of psychiatry/neurology fared the worst with just one of 18 new drugs showing added benefit. New drugs for diabetes also performed badly with only four out of 24 showing extra value.
The investigators acknowledge the argument that drugs can be approved without showing "added benefit" data to allow speedy access to new products, with the promise of future comparative studies. However, they note, such promises are often never fulfilled.
"A critical and well known problem with post-marketing studies is they often do not happen.... Globally, regulators do little to sanction non-compliant companies," they write.
The investigators also suggest that health policy makers need to take a more proactive approach in the drug development process.
"Rather than waiting for drug companies to decide what to develop, they could define the health system's needs and implement measures to ensure the development of the treatments required," they write, adding that this could include needs-oriented public-private partnerships and not-for-profit drug development.
Sobering stuff. We are shocked that the editors published these studies given that both are rewarded handsomely from Big Pharma advertising revenue.
PUBLC HEALTH ALERT UPDATE
Steve & Bonnie: Some exciting, some scary, but a must read for sure...This article is reserved for NCI Well Connect Members. You can get this article by signing up here. You can get our free eNewsletter by signing up at the top of our website.