Home' Greymouth Star : February 9th 2015 Contents Greymouth Star
4 - Monday, February 9, 2015
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uLetters to the editor
1942 - The French passenger liner
Normandie burns and sinks at its pier.
1950 - US Senator Joseph McCarthy says
he has evidence that there are
individuals in the State Department
who are card-carrying members of
the Communist Party. 1981 - Death
of Bill Haley, US rock’n’roll singer
and bandleader. 1996 - A bomb
explodes in a London business
district, killing two.
2002 - Death of Princess Margaret, 71,
younger sister of Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II.
2007 - Australian kayaker Andrew McAuley
is lost at sea while attempting a trans-Tasman
crossing. His kayak capsizes 65km from NZ’s
2010 - Walter Frederick Morrison, the man
credited with inventing the Frisbee, dies in
Utah aged 90; Iran begins enriching uranium
to a higher level over the objections of the US
and its allies.
uWest Coast yesteryear
uToday in history
Charles Kingsford-Smith, Australian aviation
pioneer (1897-1935); Kathryn Grayson, US
actor-singer (1922-2010); Janet Suzman,
British actor (1939-); J M Coetzee,
South African author (1940-);
Carole King, US singer (1942-);
Joe Pesci, US actor (1943-); Derryn
Hinch, Australian media personality
(1944-); Alice Walker, US author
(1944-); Mia Farrow, US actor
(1945-); Travis Tritt, US country
singer (1963-); Glenn McGrath,
Australian cricketer (1970-); Ziyi Zhang,
Chinese actress (1979-) .
“If we knew where opinion ended and fact
began, we should have discovered, I suppose,
— Alec Waugh, English author (1898-1981).
“ I can do everything through Him who gives
me strength” — (Philippians 4:13)
Two men were
admitted to the
at the weekend
following two separate accidents — one
involving an axe and the other a horse. Both,
according to the hospiatl today, are in a
Mr Alan Thomas, 21, of Te Kinga, gashed his
leg with an axe when it slipped while he was
engaged in tree-felling at Aratika on Saturday
Mr Douglas William Sullivan, 47, of Hari
Hari, suffered chest injuries when he was
kicked by a horse. He was first admitted to
Whataroa Hospital on Saturday after the horse
had kicked him when he was loading it on to
A spectacular fire occurred in the Revell
Street, Hokitika premises of Dwan and
Andrews, plumbers, early this morning. Prompt
action by the Hokitika Fire Brigade, under the
super vision of chief fire officer M Davidson,
extinguished the blaze after an hour-long
The brigade arrived on the scene at 3.20am
and although the building was gutted, the
firemen successfully managed to stop the
flames spreading to nearby constructions,
including Baty’s Garage.
The Rev Father R W Falconer DD, who
is the newly-appointed curate at St Patrick’s
Parish, is also a qualified pharmacist. Fr
Falconer, who did all his schooling in Dunedin,
was about 20 when he qualified. He worked
for six years before deciding to study for the
After studying at St Kevin’s College, Oamaru,
and Holy Cross College in Mosgiel, he went
to Rome where he gained his doctorate in
uFood for thought
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ew Zealand has the
sixth-highest rate of death
from heart disease in the
This is despite the
reduction in heart disease mortality in the
The reduction has been the most
dramatic for men, falling from a peak of
360 deaths per 100,000 population in
1967, to 86 in 2011.
Fewer women than men die from heart
disease and, over the same period, their
heart mortality dropped from 149 to 47
In three decades, New Zealand
outstripped the average decline in OECD
heart mortality of 42% to be on par with
the United States at around 50%, but was
behind Australia and Britain where the
drop was more than 60%.
Advances in medicine and improvements
in lifestyle (better diet and less smoking)
are each thought to contribute roughly
the same amount to the developed world’s
reduced heart death rates.
The Heart Foundation, which is holding
its annual fundraising appeal this week, is
concerned at New Zealand’s relatively high
heart disease mortality compared with
OECD countries, but is uncertain about
the reasons for it.
“It in part may reflect limited access
several years ago to medications such as
statins and re-vascularisation procedures
(stenting and heart artery bypass surgery),
all of which have improved significantly in
recent years for New Zealanders,” said the
foundation’s medical director, Associate
Professor Gerry Devlin.
Heart disease and other disorders of the
circulation remain New Zealand’s leading
killers, accounting for 10,500 deaths in
2011, the latest reported year, compared
with the 8891 deaths attributed to cancers.
More than one New Zealander dies from
heart disease every 90 minutes. Many of
the deaths are premature and could have
About half of heart “events” happen to
people considered to be of low or medium
Long-term fatty deposits in the linings
of the heart’s arteries cause them to narrow
and stiffen. This can damage the heart by
restricting its oxygen supply, leading to a
The condition is linked to advancing
age, smoking, high blood pressure,
an unfavourable cholesterol ratio and
saturated fat consumption.
The number of patients taking statins,
which reduce levels of bad cholesterol, has
increased as the original drugs have come
off patent making them cheaper.
Pharmac data show the number of
prescriptions doubled in the decade
to 2013. But Prof Devlin questions
whether enough patients at high risk of
cardiovascular events are on statins.
It is one reason the foundation, although
it supports the Government ’s health target
that 90% of eligible people have had a
heart and diabetes check-up in the last five
years, wants the target expanded.
“The foundation believes the logical
next step is the introduction of some
management indicators for high-risk
cardiovascular disease patients as a health
Professor Devlin said that despite the
high proportion being checked — 86% by
last September — this would lead to big
reductions in heart attacks only if high-risk
patients were managed effectively, but there
was little data on this.
The target group is men aged 45 to 74,
women aged 55 to 74, and starting 10 years
earlier for Maori, Pasifika and Indians
— although primary care guidelines also
include others such as those with a close
relative who suffered premature heart
The check-ups involve putting a patient ’s
blood pressure, cholesterol ratio, age, sex,
and smoking and diabetes status into a
computer programme which calculates the
risk of having a cardiovascular event in the
next five years.
Health Minister Jonathan Coleman said
the health targets were being reviewed but
he gave no clue if the foundation’s idea
would be adopted.
Glen Wallis’ heart attack hardly seemed
like one to him — but luckily his partner
ignored his protests and dialled 111.
Mr Wallis, now 50, wrongly believed the
moderately severe pain in his chest was
caused by back strain following a mountain
running race. The pain came on as he was
getting into bed at home in Wellington on
a Sunday night in 2010.
He is glad his partner Margriet van Klei
was not swayed.
A Mobil Oil sales manager and father of
two, Mr Wallis was taken by ambulance to
hospital, where he was given anti-clotting
injections and had a stent placed to widen
a heart artery blocked by long-term
He spent about five days in hospital
and has had no trouble since. He had
to quit running for a time during his
rehabilitation, but was soon back to his
usual distances that add to more than
3000km a year. He now takes small doses
of aspirin and drugs to lower cholesterol
and blood pressure.
Mr Wallis considers himself lucky his
partner forced the issue, resulting in rapid
“My doctor described it as a widow-
maker heart attack.”
But Mr Wallis is also surprised it
happened at all. A non-smoker, he has
run competitively since he was eight, has
always considered himself healthy and his
only heart risk factor — apart from middle
age — was a slightly elevated cholesterol
“I thought running all the time gave you
that insurance that I didn’t have to worry
too much about what I ate because I’m
doing that exercise.”
But in a rehabilitation programme
following his discharge from hospital, he
learned to read food labels and was urged
to reduce fats in his diet — especially trans
fats — as well as sugar, salt and processed
foods in general.
“If it comes in a packet, I try to avoid
eating it. I’d rather eat an apple than a
packet of chippies.”
Mr Wallis said his experience showed
that “heart attacks can happen to anyone.
“Just because you’re active and healthy it
doesn’t make you immune so you should go
and get some regular checks.”
‘My kids saw me carted off in an
When Deb Leslie had a heart attack aged
41, it was not the common type caused by
fatty deposits in the heart arteries.
Instead, she was felled by a “dissection”, a
tear within the walls of a heart artery.
The blood seeps between the walls,
causing an inwards bulge and potentially
a blockage, having the same effect as the
more common attack in which a clot
reduces the supply of oxygen-rich blood to
When this rare condition strikes, it tends
to happen earlier in life than most heart
attacks and occurs more in women than
men. Its causes are unclear.
Mrs Leslie, now 43, was at the food court
in her local mall at Paraparaumu north of
Wellington with her two children, then
aged five and six, having just visited her
doctor, when the attack happened.
She had started to feel “a bit funny ”, with
a growing pressure in her chest.
“I was doing the usual Kiwi ‘she’ ll be
right’ and I thought maybe I should go
back to the doctor when I tried to stand up
“The pain was worse than childbirth.”
She collapsed. A security guard was
called and Mrs Leslie was returned to the
medical clinic in a wheelchair, then taken
by ambulance to Wellington Hospital.
“I thought I was going to die.”
She was put on several heart drugs at first
but now takes mainly only aspirin.
No surgery or angioplasty was done as
they are not generally considered useful for
this kind of heart attack.
It took nine months before Mrs Leslie
felt normal again and she worries about
having another attack. She said the episode
had changed her life and she hopes that
by speaking publicly of her illness she can
help other women to avoid what she has
Formerly a team leader in the Court of
Appeal, she has not been able to return to
paid work and has suffered major anxiety.
“My kids saw their mother collapse
unconscious and be carted off in an
ambulance, not to be seen for five days. The
kids are worried all the time that I’m going
“I never prioritised my health. I just took
it for granted. Now we are much more
health conscious. My husband (Stephen)
lost 15kg while I was in hospital.”
They exercise regularly and eat a diet rich
in fruit and vegetables, low in fat and with
reduced amounts of refined carbohydrates.
Mrs Leslie said a positive spin-off of the
illness was to learn no plaque had built up
in her heart arteries, her cholesterol level
and blood pressure were low and, on the
standard risk factors, she had less than 1%
chance of having a heart attack.
Five ways to reduce your heart attack
Eat more healthily: more vegetables
and fruit; more healthy oils; less saturated
fat; less refined carbohydrate, sugar and
Do at least 30 minutes a day of
moderately vigorous physical activity.
Ask your GP for a heart and diabetes
Manage stress. — New Zealand Herald
Our biggest killer
Health Minister Jonathan Coleman
PICTURES: New Zealand Herald
Stephen Shapiro says he “could not
sur vive” without his Keurig single-serve
“I wake up, before I even go to the
bathroom I turn my Keurig on,” said
the 75-year-old retired health food store
owner, who splits his time between New
York and Boca Raton, F lorida.
Before he bought the machine more
than six years ago, he used a traditional
drip brewer, and would pour between a
third and a half of the coffee he brewed
each morning into the sink. With the
Keurig machine, that ’s no longer the case.
“There’s no waste at all,” Shapiro said.
“ You brew what you drink and that ’s it.”
Sales of coffee pods for the slick
single-ser ve machines like Keurig Green
Mountain’s Keurig, Nestle’s Nespresso,
and Starbucks’ Verismo soared to
$3.8 billion in 2014 from $234 million
in 2009, Mintel market research data
shows. Keurig, the maker of the most
popular machine, has seen its shares rise
to about $118 on Friday from about $9 in
Stealing market share from traditional
roasted coffee, the phenomenon is
transforming the coffee industry in less
obvious ways too: the single-cup pods are
increasing efficiency, denting demand for
beans as Americans, like Shapiro, throw
less leftover java down the drain.
Traders often quip that before single
ser ve coffee pods gained prominence,
the sink was the world’s largest coffee
Now, Nielsen data seen by Reuters but
not publicly available shows Americans
bought 967 million pounds of coffee
from retail outlets in the 52 weeks ended
December 20, 2014, a 1.2% decline from
the prior year. Nielsen spokeswoman
Meg Chari confirmed the figures but
declined to provide the original report
or the figures from prior years, which are
available only to customers.
Still, Americans are drinking more
coffee, and spending hundreds of millions
more dollars on it, every year. Americans
spent a total of $11.9b on coffee in 2014,
up 6% from $11.2b in 2013 and up
almost 60% from $7.6b in 2009, Mintel
data show. The rise comes as single-serve
sales have exploded, as roasters often
charge a hefty premium for single-
serve over the same type of coffee in a
traditional ground or whole bean format.
Americans drank 2.01 cups a day in
2014, up from 1.97 cups in 2013 and
the highest level since 1980, National
Coffee Association data show. The group
changed its methodology in 2012 to
better represent African-Americans and
The data suggest that even as
Americans drink more coffee, the switch
to single-ser ve and the reduction in
coffee waste has increased the efficiency
of consumption, limiting the overall
amount of beans roasters will need to buy
It is not just what coffee drinkers
are not throwing away that is eroding
Each single-serving cup contains just
over six beans per liquid ounce, compared
to 10 beans in traditional coffee brewed
to Specialty Coffee Association of
America standards, estimated Nate
Hrobak, a buyer at Caribou Coffee in
Minneapolis, one of the nation’s largest
The transformation of how Americans
buy and consume coffee comes as farmers
grapple with severe droughts in Brazil,
the world’s biggest coffee grower, and a
devastating leaf rust disease in Central
America. The growing popularity of the
more efficient new machines has blunted
the effect of supply crises on prices,
traders and roasters said.
“At the rate that Keurig is growing and
selling, that has some material impact
on the overall coffee world,” Hrobak of
Caribou said, noting that the reduction
in coffee waste has significantly increased
consumption efficiency, even as single-
serve has expanded coffee’s reach.
Using Nespresso’s “portioned coffee
system” can reduce the amount of leftover
coffee depending on consumer behavior,
spokeswoman Diane D uperret said.
Nestle has been making single-ser ve
espresso capsules and machines since
However, Nespresso does not see
bean demand declining, noting that the
growth in the single-serve coffee segment
has boosted overall coffee purchases,
Indeed, the Nielsen data is just one
measure of coffee demand. US imports
reached 24m 60-kg bags in the first 11
months of last year, 3% more than the
same period of 2013, International Trade
Commission data show. Full-year data
has not been released yet.
The data also refer only to sales at
retail outlets, for consumption at home,
excluding the swathe of coffee consumed
at work or coffee shops.
Data from market research firm Mintel
including out-of-home coffee shows that
purchases by weight rose steadily between
2010 and 2013, and is forecast to rise
Still, the NCA says that home remained
the dominant place for consumption
in 2014, with 81% of coffee drinkers
consuming at home and 35% consuming
elsewhere, both up from the prior year.
The percentages show that many people
drink coffee both at home and on the go.
And while single-ser ve coffee is
more efficient and convenient, some
consumers said it is simply not as tasty as
a traditionally-brewed cup.
“There definitely are things you miss
— the really fresh smell, the sound,
and the taste,” said Cindy Glickert,
an antiques dealer living in Kirkland,
Washington. “But you give that up for
the convenience.” — Reuters
Single-serve machines transforming the coffee industry
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