Dallas, Texas - Popular commercial diets can help you lose some weight in the short term, but keeping the weight off after the first year and the diet’s impact on heart health are unclear, according to a study published in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes, an American Heart Association journal.

Atlanta, Georgia - Half of all premature deaths from colorectal cancer (described as deaths in people ages 25 to 64) in the United States are linked to ethnic, socioeconomic, and geographic inequalities, and therefore could be prevented according to a new study by American Cancer Society researchers. The report, which appears in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, found more preventable deaths occur in southern states than in northern and western states, but that in virtually all states those with the least education had significantly higher colorectal cancer death rates.

Washington, DC - Certain sunscreen chemicals used to protect against ultraviolent rays may impair men’s ability to father children in a timely manner, according to a study by the National Institutes of Health and the New York state Department of Health’s Wadsworth Center. But the researchers caution that the results are preliminary and that additional studies are needed to confirm their findings.

La Jolla, California - A study using Medicare reimbursement codes to compare the cost of proton therapy versus eight different types of partial and whole breast irradiation therapies and treatment schedules for early-stage breast cancer patients has shown that proton therapy is at or below the cost of other therapies.

Washington, DC - A newly published set of 10 guiding principles highlights areas of agreement for diabetes care that could be clinically useful in diabetes management and prevention. Presented by the National Diabetes Education Program (NDEP), Guiding Principles for the Care of People With or at Risk for Diabetes is aimed at assisting with identification and management of the disease, self-management support for patients, physical activity and blood glucose control, among other topics.

Baltimore, Maryland - Researchers at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and elsewhere have found that genetic differences may account for why zinc supplements are more beneficial to some people than to others for the prevention and control of diabetes. The results of their pilot study of a population of Old Order Amish is believed to be the first to point out the relevance of small genetic differences in response to zinc supplementation at play in diabetes management. A report on the work was published last week in Diabetologia.