(Upload on October 2 2020) [ 日本語 | English ]

Health (健康)

Mount Usu / Sarobetsu post-mined peatland
From left: Crater basin in 1986 and 2006. Cottongrass / Daylily

[mental health, health control, safety manual]

Environmental medicine (環境医学)


Criteria of causal relation (cause-and-effect relationship) in observation research (different from correlation on statistics)
Genealogy of causal calculus
Koch's four postulates (Koch Robert 1843-1910)
  1. the microorganism or other pathogen must be present in all cases of the disease
  2. the pathogen can be isolated from the diseased host and grown in pure culture
  3. the pathogen from the pure culture must cause the disease when inoculated into a healthy, susceptible laboratory animal
  4. the pathogen must be reisolated from the new host and shown to be the same as the originally inoculated pathogen
Ex. Minamata disease follows Koch's postulates → source of the disease
Ex. Itai-itai disease does not follow the postulates → laboratory animal did not remain free from the disease after Cd inoculation
Evans's eight conditions (Evans RS)
Nine criteria proposed by Hill
→ perspectives = five criteria of Surgeon General (米国公衆衛生局長諮問委員会)
  1. consistency (関連の一致性)
  2. temporality (関連の時間性)
  3. biological plausibility (生物学的説得性)
  4. strength (関連の強固性)
  5. coherence (関連の整合性)
  6. experimental evidence (実験的証明性)
  7. specificity (関連の特異性)
  8. biological gradient (生物学的勾配)
  9. analogy (類似性)
Component cause
Web of causation
Popperian and probability theorists (蓋然性論者)
ICD (International Classification of Disease, Injuries and Causes of Death or International Classification of Diseases, 国際疾病分類)

the basis for comparable statistics on causes of mortality and morbidity between places and over time →
classification of deseases and injuries provided by basic classification of death causes and deseases
11th revision was adopted in May 2019 (into effect on Jan 1 2022)

Epidemiology (疫学)

The characteristics of medicine

The study and analysis of the patterns, causes, and effects of health and disease conditions in defined populations

Hippocrates (BC 460-BC375): patriarc of epidemiology
Claudius Galenus (130-200)
Bernardino Ramazzini 1633-1714

"De Morbis artificum diatriba (働く人々の病気)" (1700)
discussiong about labor and the envrironments → cosistent with the insight of the present industrial hygiene

Johann Peter Frank (1754-1821)

"System einer vollständigen medizinischen Polizei"

Edwin Chadwick

"Report on an inquiry into the sanitary condition of the laboring population of Great Britain" (1842)

Reincke JJ
Edward Jenner (1749-1823)
John Snow (1813-1858) anesthesist of Queen Victoria

The third outbreak of cholera → miasma theory (Broad Street affair)
Distribution of cholera Determining the source of the cholera outbreaks = St. James District = 220 per 10000 people vs the other districts = 22/10000人
→ mostly in and around Broad Street → spotlight to well = people who drank water at a specific well got cholera frequently
"On the mode of communication of cholera"(1855): cholera is transmitted by water

Robert Koch (1843-1910)

1883: discovered cholera bacillus
→ no cholera emergence at the time → effectiveness and win of epidemiology

Claude Bernard (1813-1878)

"Introduction á l'étude de la médicine expérimentale"

Rudolf Virchow (1821-1902)
Max von Pettenkofer (1818-1895)
Louis Pasteur (1822-1895)
Takagi K (高木兼寛)

beriberi occurrence is related to food quality

Eijkman M30

beriberi occurrence owing to white rice ↔ heal by bran (VB1 was not discovered)

Suzuki U (鈴木梅太郎, 1910/M43): discovered VB1 from rice bran

Pandemic (パンデミック, 世界流行, 汎発流行)

occurring on a scale which crosses international boundaries
430BC-426 Plague of Athens
165-180___Antonine Plague
541-750___Plague of Justinian
1331-1353_Black Death
1918-1920_Spanish flu
> Epidemic (エピデミック, 流行)
within community
> Endemic (エンデミック, 地域流行)

Pollution disease (公害病)

≈ disease caused by environmental contamination, disease caused by environmental pollution, disease caused by pollution, environmental disease, pollution-caused diseases, pollution-related disease, pollution-triggered disease

The four major pollution-related disease (日本四大公害病)

Minamata disease
Second Minamata disease (mercury poisoning in Niigata Prefecture)
Yokkaichi asthma
Itai-itai disease

Eenvironmental hormone (環境ホルモン)

≈ (environmental) endocrine disrupter, endocrine disturbing chemicals, endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDC), environmental hormone, hormone-disrupting chemicals, hormone-disrupting substances

[Note on a lecture in WA]

Mental health (メンタルヘルス・精神保健)


Anxious (不安)

Stressed people often decide two things:

  1. The situation is dangerous, difficult or painful.
  2. They do not have the resources/do not know how to cope.

→ To effectively deal with stress you must:

  1. appraise the situation realistically
  2. know that you have the resources to cope
How to get the most out of the relaxation techniques
  1. Practice the exercises regularly. Every day is the best. If you can not manage time every day, set aside at least three times per week. In the long run, the more relaxed you are, the more you will be able to accomplish.
  1. Choose a quite, comfortable place to do your exercises. Make sure you will not be interrupted. Let your family and friends know that you need this time to look after your mental and physical health. The healthier you are, the more you will be able to give to others.
  2. Understand your personal reactions to stress, then choose the techniques best suited to your needs.
  3. Body awareness is the first step to recognizing and reducing stress.
  4. Practice prevention ? educate yourself on the subject, do relaxation exercises. Being relaxed when you start and end your day will prevent stress-related symptoms. Knowing how to cope will prevent stress.
  5. Ask yourself if you are interpreting situations realistically.
  6. Tell yourself you will be able to cope and that you will find the necessary resources either within yourself or from others.

My stress management program

I. Basic requirements for stress management

I am aware of my stress level. Its source. My response. I am accepting of myself. I know and accept that managing unrelieved stress requires effort from me. I have assessed my coping skills. I am developing more effective skills as needed.

II. Stress Management strategies

A. Changing your life situation
I eat a balanced diet.
I limit my intake of fat, salt and sugar.
I do not smoke.
I do not abuse alcohol or drugs.
I am neither overweight or underweight.
I drink less than four caffeinated beverages daily.
I exercise for 30 minutes at least three time weekly.
I get enough sleep every night. I am happy in my work.
I am financially comfortable.
I reach out and receive support from friends and/or family.
I plan major changes in my life.
B. Relaxation
I am able to relax on cue by using my relaxation skills.
I participate in relaxing/leisure.
C. Changing your mind
My goals are realistic.
I am able to accept criticism.
For the most part, I believe I am in control of what happens to me.
Generally, I am a confident person.
III. Interpretation:
What strategies are you currently utilizing to manage stress? If your stress management is weak in any of the three sections (A, B, C), you should focus development of more effective stress management in these areas:

A. Changing your life situation
B. Relaxation
C. Changing your mind (thoughts, perceptions, attitudes)

Noise stress (騒音ストレス)

Effects of noise on human

physiological effect ↖_____↗ psychological effect
activity interference ↙____ ↘ social impact
Fig. The effects of noise on various human activities

Physiological and psychological effects
Physiological effects: auditory disorder (hypacusis), nterference with sleep
Psychological effects: noisiness, conversation interference, lowering operating efficiency

(Hübner et al. 2019)

Annoyance and stress effects of wind turbines
Findings indicate low prevalence of annoyance, stress symptoms and coping strategies. Noise annoyance stress (NAS-Scale) was negatively correlated with the perceptions of a lack of fairness of the wind project's planning and development process, among other subjective variables. Objective indicators, such as the distance from the nearest turbine and sound pressure level modeled for each respondent, were not found to be correlated to noise annoyance. Similar result patterns were found across the European and U.S. samples.

Health control (健康管理)

Chemical sensitivity, CS (化学物質過敏症)

1) Sick building syndrome, SBS (シックハウス症候群)

situations in which building occupants experience acute health and comfort effects that appear to be linked to time spent in a building, but no specific illness or cause can be identified

[ pollen ]

2) Pollen allergy (花粉症)

= hay fever
The mojor plants that induce pollen allergy are white birch (Betula platyphylla var. japonica), pastures, such as orchard grass (Dactylis glomerata), narrowleaf plantain (Plantago lanceolata) and mugworts (Artemisia spp.) in Hokkaido.
• Pollen dispersal periods in Hokkaido

Alnus japonica: late March - middle April
Betula platyphylla: late April - middle June
Pastures, represented by

Dactylis glomerata and Phleum pratense: late May - early July
Additionally, Poa pratensis, Anthoxanthum odoratum, Alopecurus aequalis, etc. should be mentioned

Plantago lanceolata: middle May - early August
Artemisia spp.: middle August - late September

Fig. Periods of pollen dispersals in Sapporo

               1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9   10  11  12  
Alnus                  ←→
Betula                        ←--→
Dactylis                           ←------→
Phleum                            ←--------→
Artemisia                                        ←----→           


Watery eyes
Nasal congestion
Runny nose
Itchy throat

Smoking (喫煙)

Quitting smoking is easy. I have done it a thousand times.
I am seventy years old, and I must be careful about my health. So I smoke only one cigar at a time.
- Mark Twain

[microbiology, mycology]

Gut bacteria or intestinal bacteria (腸内細菌)

microorganisms living in the digestive tracts of animals

Gut microbiota (腸内微生物叢)

= human gastrointestinal microbiota, gut flora and gut microbiota
The four dominant bacterial phyla in the human gut

Firmicutes, Bacteroidetes, Actinobacteria, and Proteobacteria

⇒ The composition changes with age

Ex. The composition of gut microbiota in general adult

Bacteroides (50%)
Bifidobacteria (bifidus) (15%)
anaerobic coccus (15%)
Eubacterium (10%)
Clostridium (10%)

Fig. The biosynthesis of bioactive compounds (indole and certain other derivatives) from tryptophan by bacteria in the gut. Indole is produced from tryptophan by bacteria expressing tryptophanase. Clostridium sporogenes metabolizes tryptophan into indole and subsequently 3-indolepropionic acid (IPA), a highly potent neuroprotective antioxidant that scavenges hydroxyl radicals. IPA binds to the pregnane X receptor (PXR) in intestinal cells, thereby facilitating mucosal homeostasis and barrier function. Following absorption from the intestine and distribution to the brain, IPA confers a neuroprotective effect against cerebral ischemia and Alzheimer's disease. Lactobacillus species metabolize tryptophan into indole-3-aldehyde (I3A) which acts on the aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) in intestinal immune cells, in turn increasing interleukin-22 (IL-22) production. Indole itself triggers the secretion of glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) in intestinal L cells and acts as a ligand for AhR. Indole can also be metabolized by the liver into indoxyl sulfate, a compound that is toxic in high concentrations and associated with vascular disease and renal dysfunction. AST-120 (activated charcoal), an intestinal sorbent that is taken by mouth, adsorbs indole, in turn decreasing the concentration of indoxyl sulfate in blood plasma.
Candida, Saccharomyces, Aspergillus, Penicillium, Rhodotorula, Trametes, Pleospora, Sclerotinia, Bullera, Galactomyces, etc.
Methanobrevibacter smithii is the most abundant methane-producing archaeal species in the human gastrointestinal microbiota

  • Ewald PW. 2000. Plague time: The new germ theory of disease. Anchor Books, New York.
  • Rothman KJ. 2002. Epidemiology – An introduction -. Oxford University Press