Individual dietary choices can add – or take away – minutes, hours and years of life

Vegetarian and vegan options have become standard fare in the American diet, from upscale restaurants to fast-food chains. And many people know that the food choices they make affect their own health as well as that of the planet.

But on a daily basis, it’s hard to know how much individual choices, such as buying mixed greens at the grocery store or ordering chicken wings at a sports bar, might translate to overall personal and environmental health. That’s the gap we hope to fill with our research.

We are part of a team of researchers with expertise in food sustainability and environmental life cycle assessment, epidemiology and environmental health and nutrition. We are working to gain a deeper understanding beyond the often overly simplistic animal-versus-plant diet debate and to identify environmentally sustainable foods that also promote human health.

Building on this multi-disciplinary expertise, we combined 15 nutritional health-based dietary risk factors with 18 environmental indicators to evaluate, classify and prioritize more than 5,800 individual foods.

Ultimately, we wanted to know: Are drastic dietary changes required to improve our individual health and reduce environmental impacts? And does the entire population need to become vegan to make a meaningful difference for human health and that of the planet?

Putting hard numbers on food choices

In our new study in the research journal Nature Food, we provide some of the first concrete numbers for the health burden of various food choices. We analyzed the individual foods based on their composition to calculate each food item’s net benefits or impacts.

The Health Nutritional Index that we developed turns this information into minutes of life lost or gained per serving size of each food item consumed. For instance, we found that eating one hot dog costs a person 36 minutes of “healthy” life. In comparison, we found that eating a serving size of 30 grams of nuts and seeds provides a gain of 25 minutes of healthy life – that is, an increase in good-quality and disease-free life expectancy.

Our study also showed that substituting only 10% of daily caloric intake of beef and processed meats for a diverse mix of whole grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes and select seafood could reduce, on average, the dietary carbon footprint of a U.S. consumer by one-third and add 48 healthy minutes of life per day. This is a substantial improvement for such a limited dietary change.


Relative positions of select foods, from apples to hot dogs, are shown on a carbon footprint versus nutritional health map. Foods scoring well, shown in green, have beneficial effects on human health and a low environmental footprint. (Austin Thomason/Michigan Photography and University of Michigan, CC BY-ND)

How did we crunch the numbers?

We based our Health Nutritional Index on a large epidemiological study called the Global Burden of Disease, a comprehensive global study and database that was developed with the help of more than 7,000 researchers around the world. The Global Burden of Disease determines the risks and benefits associated with multiple environmental, metabolic and behavioral factors – including 15 dietary risk factors.

Our team took that population-level epidemiological data and adapted it down to the level of individual foods. Taking into account more than 6,000 risk estimates specific to each age, gender, disease and risk, and the fact that there are about a half-million minutes in a year, we calculated the health burden that comes with consuming one gram’s worth of food for each of the dietary risk factors.

For example, we found that, on average, 0.45 minutes are lost per gram of any processed meat that a person eats in the U.S. We then multiplied this number by the corresponding food profiles that we previously developed. Going back to the example of a hot dog, the 61 grams of processed meat in a hot dog sandwich results in 27 minutes of healthy life lost due to this amount of processed meat alone. Then, when considering the other risk factors, like the sodium and trans fatty acids inside the hot dog – counterbalanced by the benefit of its polyunsaturated fat and fibers – we arrived at the final value of 36 minutes of healthy life lost per hot dog.

We repeated this calculation for more than 5,800 foods and mixed dishes. We then compared scores from the health indices with 18 different environmental metrics, including carbon footprint, water use and air pollution-induced human health impacts. Finally, using this health and environmental nexus, we color-coded each food item as green, yellow or red. Like a traffic light, green foods have beneficial effects on health and a low environmental impact and should be increased in the diet, while red foods should be reduced.

Where do we go from here?

Our study allowed us to identify certain priority actions that people can take to both improve their health and reduce their environmental footprint.

When it comes to environmental sustainability, we found striking variations both within and between animal-based and plant-based foods. For the “red” foods, beef has the largest carbon footprint across its entire life cycle – twice as high as pork or lamb and four times that of poultry and dairy. From a health standpoint, eliminating processed meat and reducing overall sodium consumption provides the largest gain in healthy life compared with all other food types.

Cattle in feedlot or feed yard
Beef consumption had the highest negative environmental impacts, and processed meat had the most important overall adverse health effects. (ID 35528731 © Ikonoklastfotografie | Dreamstime.com)

Therefore, people might consider eating less of foods that are high in processed meat and beef, followed by pork and lamb. And notably, among plant-based foods, greenhouse-grown vegetables scored poorly on environmental impacts due to the combustion emissions from heating.

Foods that people might consider increasing are those that have high beneficial effects on health and low environmental impacts. We observed a lot of flexibility among these “green” choices, including whole grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes and low-environmental impact fish and seafood. These items also offer options for all income levels, tastes and cultures.

Our study also shows that when it comes to food sustainability, it is not sufficient to only consider the amount of greenhouse gases emitted – the so-called carbon footprint. Water-saving techniques, such as drip irrigation and the reuse of gray water – or domestic wastewater such as that from sinks and showers – can also make important steps toward lowering the water footprint of food production.

A limitation of our study is that the epidemiological data does not enable us to differentiate within the same food group, such as the health benefits of a watermelon versus an apple. In addition, individual foods always need to be considered within the context of one’s individual diet, considering the maximum level above which foods are not any more beneficial – one cannot live forever by just increasing fruit consumption.

At the same time, our Health Nutrient Index has the potential to be regularly adapted, incorporating new knowledge and data as they become available. And it can be customized worldwide, as has already been done in Switzerland.

It was encouraging to see how small, targeted changes could make such a meaningful difference for both health and environmental sustainability – one meal at a time.

[You’re smart and curious about the world. So are The Conversation’s authors and editors. You can get our highlights each weekend.]

The Conversation

Olivier Jolliet, Professor of Environmental Health Sciences, University of Michigan and Katerina S. Stylianou, Research Associate in Environmental Health Sciences, University of Michigan

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

By: Olivier Jolliet
Title: Individual dietary choices can add – or take away – minutes, hours and years of life
Sourced From: www.thefix.com/individual-dietary-choices-can-add-or-take-away-minutes-hours-and-years-life
Published Date: Wed, 22 Sep 2021 06:03:14 +0000

At New Horizon Drug Rehab, we understand addiction. If you or a family member are afflicted with addiction or substance abuse we can help. We work with the top centers throughout the US to provide the best detox and addiction treatments available.

Call Now: (877) 747-9974

Individual dietary choices can add – or take away – minutes, hours and years of life

Vegetarian and vegan options have become standard fare in the American diet, from upscale restaurants to fast-food chains. And many people know that the food choices they make affect their own health as well as that of the planet.

But on a daily basis, it’s hard to know how much individual choices, such as buying mixed greens at the grocery store or ordering chicken wings at a sports bar, might translate to overall personal and environmental health. That’s the gap we hope to fill with our research.

We are part of a team of researchers with expertise in food sustainability and environmental life cycle assessment, epidemiology and environmental health and nutrition. We are working to gain a deeper understanding beyond the often overly simplistic animal-versus-plant diet debate and to identify environmentally sustainable foods that also promote human health.

Building on this multi-disciplinary expertise, we combined 15 nutritional health-based dietary risk factors with 18 environmental indicators to evaluate, classify and prioritize more than 5,800 individual foods.

Ultimately, we wanted to know: Are drastic dietary changes required to improve our individual health and reduce environmental impacts? And does the entire population need to become vegan to make a meaningful difference for human health and that of the planet?

Putting hard numbers on food choices

In our new study in the research journal Nature Food, we provide some of the first concrete numbers for the health burden of various food choices. We analyzed the individual foods based on their composition to calculate each food item’s net benefits or impacts.

The Health Nutritional Index that we developed turns this information into minutes of life lost or gained per serving size of each food item consumed. For instance, we found that eating one hot dog costs a person 36 minutes of “healthy” life. In comparison, we found that eating a serving size of 30 grams of nuts and seeds provides a gain of 25 minutes of healthy life – that is, an increase in good-quality and disease-free life expectancy.

Our study also showed that substituting only 10% of daily caloric intake of beef and processed meats for a diverse mix of whole grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes and select seafood could reduce, on average, the dietary carbon footprint of a U.S. consumer by one-third and add 48 healthy minutes of life per day. This is a substantial improvement for such a limited dietary change.


Relative positions of select foods, from apples to hot dogs, are shown on a carbon footprint versus nutritional health map. Foods scoring well, shown in green, have beneficial effects on human health and a low environmental footprint. (Austin Thomason/Michigan Photography and University of Michigan, CC BY-ND)

How did we crunch the numbers?

We based our Health Nutritional Index on a large epidemiological study called the Global Burden of Disease, a comprehensive global study and database that was developed with the help of more than 7,000 researchers around the world. The Global Burden of Disease determines the risks and benefits associated with multiple environmental, metabolic and behavioral factors – including 15 dietary risk factors.

Our team took that population-level epidemiological data and adapted it down to the level of individual foods. Taking into account more than 6,000 risk estimates specific to each age, gender, disease and risk, and the fact that there are about a half-million minutes in a year, we calculated the health burden that comes with consuming one gram’s worth of food for each of the dietary risk factors.

For example, we found that, on average, 0.45 minutes are lost per gram of any processed meat that a person eats in the U.S. We then multiplied this number by the corresponding food profiles that we previously developed. Going back to the example of a hot dog, the 61 grams of processed meat in a hot dog sandwich results in 27 minutes of healthy life lost due to this amount of processed meat alone. Then, when considering the other risk factors, like the sodium and trans fatty acids inside the hot dog – counterbalanced by the benefit of its polyunsaturated fat and fibers – we arrived at the final value of 36 minutes of healthy life lost per hot dog.

We repeated this calculation for more than 5,800 foods and mixed dishes. We then compared scores from the health indices with 18 different environmental metrics, including carbon footprint, water use and air pollution-induced human health impacts. Finally, using this health and environmental nexus, we color-coded each food item as green, yellow or red. Like a traffic light, green foods have beneficial effects on health and a low environmental impact and should be increased in the diet, while red foods should be reduced.

Where do we go from here?

Our study allowed us to identify certain priority actions that people can take to both improve their health and reduce their environmental footprint.

When it comes to environmental sustainability, we found striking variations both within and between animal-based and plant-based foods. For the “red” foods, beef has the largest carbon footprint across its entire life cycle – twice as high as pork or lamb and four times that of poultry and dairy. From a health standpoint, eliminating processed meat and reducing overall sodium consumption provides the largest gain in healthy life compared with all other food types.

Cattle in feedlot or feed yard
Beef consumption had the highest negative environmental impacts, and processed meat had the most important overall adverse health effects. (ID 35528731 © Ikonoklastfotografie | Dreamstime.com)

Therefore, people might consider eating less of foods that are high in processed meat and beef, followed by pork and lamb. And notably, among plant-based foods, greenhouse-grown vegetables scored poorly on environmental impacts due to the combustion emissions from heating.

Foods that people might consider increasing are those that have high beneficial effects on health and low environmental impacts. We observed a lot of flexibility among these “green” choices, including whole grains, fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes and low-environmental impact fish and seafood. These items also offer options for all income levels, tastes and cultures.

Our study also shows that when it comes to food sustainability, it is not sufficient to only consider the amount of greenhouse gases emitted – the so-called carbon footprint. Water-saving techniques, such as drip irrigation and the reuse of gray water – or domestic wastewater such as that from sinks and showers – can also make important steps toward lowering the water footprint of food production.

A limitation of our study is that the epidemiological data does not enable us to differentiate within the same food group, such as the health benefits of a watermelon versus an apple. In addition, individual foods always need to be considered within the context of one’s individual diet, considering the maximum level above which foods are not any more beneficial – one cannot live forever by just increasing fruit consumption.

At the same time, our Health Nutrient Index has the potential to be regularly adapted, incorporating new knowledge and data as they become available. And it can be customized worldwide, as has already been done in Switzerland.

It was encouraging to see how small, targeted changes could make such a meaningful difference for both health and environmental sustainability – one meal at a time.

[You’re smart and curious about the world. So are The Conversation’s authors and editors. You can get our highlights each weekend.]

The Conversation

Olivier Jolliet, Professor of Environmental Health Sciences, University of Michigan and Katerina S. Stylianou, Research Associate in Environmental Health Sciences, University of Michigan

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

By: Olivier Jolliet
Title: Individual dietary choices can add – or take away – minutes, hours and years of life
Sourced From: www.thefix.com/individual-dietary-choices-can-add-or-take-away-minutes-hours-and-years-life
Published Date: Wed, 22 Sep 2021 06:03:14 +0000

At New Horizon Drug Rehab, we understand addiction. If you or a family member are afflicted with addiction or substance abuse we can help. We work with the top centers throughout the US to provide the best detox and addiction treatments available.

Call Now: (877) 747-9974

Tarzana Recovery Center

Tarzana Recovery Center (TRC) is a residential treatment center based in the San Fernando Valley neighborhood of Tarzana that provides treatment for substance use disorder, alcohol use disorder, dual diagnosis, and more. The facility offers an accredited sub-acute detox program certified by Integrated Management Systems. Treatment at Tarzana Recovery Center also features an array of in-residence plans and case management, as well as a partial hospitalization program (PHP) as part of their program aftercare. As their website notes, their inpatient treatment seeks to assist clients in achieving and sustaining long-term sobriety, and to guide clients on “a path of physical, mental, and spiritual health.”

Surveyed alumni gave a number of reasons for choosing TRC for treatment. The most frequently cited factors were the quality of treatment and accommodations, privacy, price, and location, with quality of treatment ranking highest among respondents. One alum noted that the staff and fellow clients “felt like family, [and] I will remain in touch and some will remain lifelong friends, I hope.” Accommodations, which were the second most frequently cited reason, range from shared rooms with roommates to single room options; roommates were “very respectful” and even “awesome.” Clients are expected to keep their rooms clean but are not assigned chores. 

Alumni described their fellow residents as a “refreshingly wide range of people.” Clients were a mix of men and women of all ages and ethnicities, and many were described as professional, but there were “college student age people” as well. Alumni considered their fellow clients “regular people looking to address what was holding them back in life.” The average length of stay was 30 days, and the most common issue driving respondents to seek treatment at TRC was substance use disorder. Others sought help for alcoholism or “dual addiction(s),” “gender-identity issues,” “relationship issues,” and “compulsive behaviors.”

The food served at TRC was described as “very gourmet” but also with a “home meal feeling.” Meals were frequently described as “healthy” and clients were allowed to “have choices and input” on the menu selections. Clients with vegan diets were pleased with the range of options available to them, while fresh fish and seafood and Italian food were cited as favorite meals, as was the cookout that is offered as part of TRC’s many activities. Coffee was made several times a day, and snacks were both plentiful and healthy. One alum felt the food was “too healthy,” while another was “grateful to have a meal.”

Alumni described their days at TRC as “busy,” with frequent involvement in a number of different activities. A couple former residents noted that staying busy is “part of the deal at Tarzana,” with an emphasis on “getting and staying involved in your life.” The program was “well-structured” and “with an emphasis on recovery through recreation and learning to have fun sober.” TRC’s treatment includes a “custom treatment plan” developed with the client, as well as one-on-one meetings with a residential treatment case manager – typically, a certified alcohol and drug counselor and a personal therapist. Evidence-based therapies such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT) and eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) are also offered, as is meditation, equine therapy, pet therapy, music therapy, yoga, and professional massage therapy.

While TRC’s program does include a 12-step element, alumni viewed it as just one part of their treatment plan. “I think the foundation is somewhat 12-step, but they were really trying to provide me with something I wouldn’t find in meetings alone,” wrote one alum. Others appreciated the fact that the emphasis seemed to be more on “learning to actually live one’s life sober and have fun.” Most cited the groups and interaction with the staff as the most memorable element of their stay at TRC. Staff was regarded as “very caring and engaged” and “very understanding,” but also with an element of tough love, which many considered “out of love and care.”

During non-treatment hours, clients had a number of activities and amenities available to them. The latter includes a pool, gym facilities, and fitness classes, while volleyball, cooking classes, bike riding were among the many activities. Clients could also take advantage of numerous off-site activities, including trips to the beach, surfing, bowling, virtual reality gaming, go-kart racing, and other weekend options, which were “super enjoyable.”

Access to a phone was described by alumni as “liberal” but also restricted while in detox, during group sessions, as well as after 10 p.m. (phones were returned at 10 a.m.). Access to television, Internet, media, and work obligations were “frequent” and the staff was “accommodating” in that regard.

TRC’s treatment includes 24/7 care from a diverse array of medical professionals, from doctors and nurse practitioners to therapists, mental health counselors, and alcohol and drug rehab technicians. The staff was described as “very helpful” and “always on call.” Doctors were even available upon request via Facetime and Zoom, which was “helpful,” while counselors at TRC were described as “exceptional.”

When asked about how they’ve fared since treatment at TRC, all respondents answered that they had been successful in maintaining sobriety for months, with some approaching their first year without substances. Some found it more challenging that others; as one alumni noted, “It is a daily reprieve. However, the tools they provided me have helped me stay clean for nine months now.” Another reported feeling “far better equipped to handle things in my life” and one summed up: “I have never been this proud of myself.”

When asked to summarize their time in treatment at TRC, many alumni expressed gratitude for the center’s staff. “I feel VERY fortunate to have found this treatment center,” wrote one alum. Another noted that the staff made them feel “at home,” and praised the staff for being “here to help me with whatever I needed.” One cited an example of the staff’s willingness to help by noting that transportation was arranged for a homeless client to come to Tarzana and stay for free, adding that the client “turned his life around.”

Another seemed to encompass their fellow alum’s feelings by “highly recommend[ing] it to the next addict.” They added that “the program helped me become the person I am right now, and I can’t thank them enough.”

By: The Fix staff
Title: Tarzana Recovery Center
Sourced From: www.thefix.com/tarzana-recovery-center
Published Date: Sat, 18 Sep 2021 05:00:49 +0000

At New Horizon Drug Rehab, we understand addiction. If you or a family member are afflicted with addiction or substance abuse we can help. We work with the top centers throughout the US to provide the best detox and addiction treatments available.

Call Now: (877) 747-9974

7 Ways 'Back To School' Can Help You Create a Better Routine

January may be the time for New Year’s resolutions, but for many people September presents another opportunity for a fresh start. Kids return to school, the chaotic summer schedules quiet down, and many people transition into their fall and winter routines. That makes September a perfect time to check in on your routines, evaluate what’s working and what’s not, and make the changes you need to live your healthiest life.

Here’s how to get started.

  1. Check in with yourself

Before you make any big changes, take some time to check in with yourself. Journaling can be helpful, but you can also just take yourself on a walk or find another way to have an internal conversation, uninterrupted. Ask yourself what feels good in your life right now? What changes are just screaming to be made? Use these as directions to evaluate what you should do next.

  1. Make a list

After you’ve taken some time to think about what you’d like to keep and change in your life, get out your pen and paper and make a list. The staff at Sunshine Coast Health Centre, a non 12-step drug and alcohol rehabilitation center in British Columbia, recommend making three lists to evaluate different areas of your life. First, start with a list of things you’re grateful for. Next, list your preferred activities, or the ways that you enjoy spending time. This can guide you in deciding how to prioritize and schedule your time. Finally, list the resources that are available to you if needed.

  1. Update your routine

Summer can be a tough time to keep on schedule. The free and easy living is nice, but can become overwhelming after a while. Think about what you let slip from your routine, and what you would like to reincorporate. This is especially important as society begins opening up again. You might have the opportunity to volunteer, participate in alumni programs or take in-person classes for the first time in more than a year. Look back on your list of preferred activities and determine how you can incorporate more of those into your days.

  1. Get organized.

Cooler weather means that most people will be spending more time inside during the coming months. To keep yourself happy and healthy, you should start with a clean slate in the house. Removing unnecessary clutter can help you keep a clear head, and knowing that all of your belongings have a physical space where they belong can help you stay organized. If you feel overwhelmed, start with one room at a time, donating things you no longer use and finding systems that work for the things you have left.

  1. Reach out for help.

Think back to that last list you made: the resources that are available to you. These might be community programs, alumni supports or people you have close relationships with. Now, think about the areas in your life where you could use a bit of extra support. How can you use your resources to build your strengths in those areas? Maybe you’re looking to get more physical activity, and could recruit a friend to be your gym or walking buddy. Perhaps you can utilize a free community credit resources to help get your finances back in order. Remember: we all need support sometimes, and reaching out for help is a strength, not a weakness.

  1. Set a sleep routine.

What’s the key to good mental, physical and emotional health? For many people, it’s getting a solid night’s sleep. Tweek your routine so that you get the recommended 8 hours of shut-eye. If you are a parent, try to get the kids in bed earlier so that you can have some time to yourself, but still get to bed at a recent hour. If you have trouble sleeping, remember to shut down the screens and turn to an old-fashioned book or bath in the hour before bed.

  1. Decide to say no.

Sometimes, what you say no to is just as important as the things you decide to do. Especially after a year at home, there’s a temptation to take every opportunity, but that can leave you overstimulated and overtired. Instead of diving back into everything all at once, choose a few meaningful (or preferred) activities to focus on. Set boundaries on things that stress you out, whether it’s joining the PTA or helping with carpooling. Remember, your time is one of your most valuable resources, and you get to decide how to spend it.

It’s not a new year, but it is a new start in many areas of North America. At this junction you can decide what you want your fall and winter to be like, and what you would like to leave behind.

Sunshine Coast Health Centre is a non 12-step drug and alcohol rehabilitation center in British Columbia. Learn more here.

By: The Fix staff
Title: 7 Ways 'Back To School' Can Help You Create a Better Routine
Sourced From: www.thefix.com/7-ways-back-school-can-help-you-create-better-routine
Published Date: Wed, 15 Sep 2021 05:25:48 +0000

At New Horizon Drug Rehab, we understand addiction. If you or a family member are afflicted with addiction or substance abuse we can help. We work with the top centers throughout the US to provide the best detox and addiction treatments available.

Call Now: (877) 747-9974

What Is the Difference Between Street Fentanyl and Pharmaceutical Fentanyl?

Statistics regarding the number of overdoses and fatalities involving the synthetic opioid fentanyl continue to paint a grim picture in the United States. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released preliminary data showing that overdose deaths in the United States rose 29.4% in 2020 to an estimated 93,331, including 69,710 involving opioid drugs, mainly fentanyl. Every state has reported a spike or rise in fatal overdoses during the COVID pandemic. One prevalent issue is that the COVID crisis is now getting worse due to the abundance of illicit fentanyl and fentanyl analogues on our streets.

Furthermore, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention noted that drugs like fentanyl are the primary reason for a 38% increase in overdose deaths between May 2019 and May 2020. During that same time period, 18 U.S. jurisdictions with available data on synthetic opioids saw increases of more than 50%, while 10 Western states reported a 98% increase. Adding to mounting concerns is the reduced availability of treatment options due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Fentanyl continues to be at the heart of the overdose epidemic, mainly illicit but also in prescription form. Fentanyl analogues are made from raw materials originating primarily in China and manufactured and sold to the United States by Mexican drug cartels. Though both forms are extremely powerful and possibly lethal, variants found in illicit mixtures are far more dangerous and affect users differently.

The prescription form of fentanyl is a Schedule II controlled substance, which means that the medication is considered a drug “with a high potential for abuse, with use potentially leading to severe psychological or physical dependence,” as noted in the Controlled Substances Act, which is overseen by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Prescription fentanyl is used primarily to treat patients enduring severe pain from surgery, cancer, or significant traumatic injuries.

Illicit fentanyl comes from two sources: it is diverted from prescription medication and sold on the street, or manufactured from other chemical sources, and then sold. Diverted fentanyl can be obtained by extracting the drug from the patch and then converted to injectable form, or by prescriptions obtained illegally from a medical professional or a person with a valid prescription. While diverted fentanyl poses serious dangers to illicit users, the illegally manufactured form fentanyl has a myriad of ways to harm individuals. The raw materials produced in China are made without quality controls imposed on the pharmaceutical variety; two milligrams of the drug can be enough to cause a fatal overdose, depending on the individual’s tolerance and other health factors. The DEA has reported seizing counterfeit medication containing 5.1 milligrams of fentanyl per tablet – twice the lethal amount and more than capable of killing multiple users.

Even users who seek to avoid using fentanyl may inadvertently ingest the drug. Numerous state and federal investigations have found fentanyl used as a cheap additive to boost the potency of drugs like heroin, cocaine, MDMA (also known as ecstasy or molly), or methamphetamine. It has also been found in counterfeit analogues of prescription opioids such as oxycodone. Combining such potent narcotics in a single dose has caused fatal interactions in increasingly high and frequent numbers.

Symptoms of fentanyl overdose are similar to those experienced with other narcotics: chest pain, labored breathing, vomiting, pale or bluish color to the face, fingernails, and lips. Seizure or unconsciousness frequently follows, and unless treatment is immediately sought and revival is attempted with the opioid overdose reversal drug Naloxone (Narcan), the afflicted individual can lapse into a coma or possibly even suffer a fatal overdose. Additionally, recent scientific data suggests that the toxic effects of fentanyl and its analogues may include compromised pulmonary function due to mechanisms not reversible by naloxone alone. Immediate comprehensive medical care is needed for every suspected drug overdose situation.

How to combat this rising tide of fentanyl overdose? Although addiction is a multi-facet condition, Clare Waismann, a substance use disorder counselor, addiction specialist, and the founder of Waismann Method, an opioid treatment program and rapid detox center, believes that mental health care and medically assisted detox should be accessible not just to those who can afford it but also to those who are in need. In today’s world, we are living through such an unsettling reality. Additionally, so many people have to deal with the trauma and consequences caused by COVID and its attendant restrictions— medical treatment for opioid dependence must be available in public hospitals along with necessary psychological support, says Mrs. Waismann. Additionally, we need a more substantial commitment to combating the rise of opioids, especially the influx of fentanyl to every corner of our country.

“We have the medical science and resources to help those suffering from fentanyl addiction. Now we need the right priorities.” – Clare Waismann. 

 

https://www.ama-assn.org/system/files/issue-brief-increases-in-opioid-related-overdose.pdf

https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/nvss/vsrr/drug-overdose-data.htm

https://www.cdc.gov/niosh/topics/fentanyl/risk.html

By: The Fix staff
Title: What Is the Difference Between Street Fentanyl and Pharmaceutical Fentanyl?
Sourced From: www.thefix.com/what-difference-between-street-fentanyl-and-pharmaceutical-fentanyl
Published Date: Wed, 08 Sep 2021 06:49:25 +0000

At New Horizon Drug Rehab, we understand addiction. If you or a family member are afflicted with addiction or substance abuse we can help. We work with the top centers throughout the US to provide the best detox and addiction treatments available.

Call Now: (877) 747-9974