Today’s Headlines: Drinking, Cancer and Weight Loss

How much do you drink? Most say doctors never ask: Five in six adults say that no health professional has ever discussed their drinking habits with them. The Centers for Disease Control survey of over 166,000 adults found that even for binge drinkers, only one in four was ever asked about their drinking, as well as only 17% of pregnant women. “Since 2004, the influential U.S. Preventive Services Task Force has recommended that health professionals ask adults about their drinking habits.” The goal of screening about drinking habits is “not only to find people with alcoholism, but to find and offer brief counseling to those whose problem drinking may not rise to the level of addiction.” (USA Today)

Cancer death rates continue to decline over past 20 years: Cancer death rates have “steadily declined for the past two decades – equating to a 20 percent decrease in the overall risk of dying from cancer,” according to the 2014 annual report from the American Cancer Society (ACS). The decrease in death rates was particularly notable for middle-aged black men, whose cancer death rates decreased by 55%. The study authors “attributed the improvement to both medical and behavioral changes that have occurred over the years.” (Fox News)

Miracle weight loss? No such thing, feds say in $34 million suit: The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) “says Sensa and other companies touting weight-loss miracles are guilty of false advertising.” According to the FTC, the makers of the weight-loss supplement “have agreed to pay $26.5 million to settle charges they have been misleading consumers with their ads.” The FTC is also accusing other companies, including L’Occitane, HCG Diet Direct and LeanSpa of false advertising for several weight-loss products such as “slimming” body creams and a “colon cleanse.” An FTC official said this was “the second-biggest deceptive advertising settlement in FTC history.” (NBC News)