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Health Briefs Archive

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Eat More Carbs to Lower Heart Risk

Low-carb diets such as Atkins, ketogenic and paleo, which emphasize protein instead of fruits, vegetable and grains, significantly increase the risk of atrial fibrillation, a new study shows.

Sit Less to Live Longer

Replacing a half hour of sitting or lying around with brisk walking and other moderate physical activities reduces the risk of dying over 14 years by 45 percent.

Eat Med Diet to Boost Performance

Eleven athletes ran five kilometers a good six percent faster after four days on a Mediterranean diet compared to four days on a Western diet.

Imbibe Less to Lower Blood Pressure

Consuming as few as seven to 13 alcoholic drinks a week increases the risk of high blood pressure, say researchers.

Take Magnesium to Optimize Vitamin D

Magnesium increases Vitamin D absorption in people with low levels and lowers absorption in people with excessive amounts.

Find a Green Space and Make a Friend

Green spaces and colorful design elements like rainbow-painted crosswalks in a Vancouver, Canada neighborhood made people happier and more trusting of strangers.

Legal Pot Lifts Junk Food Sales

After three states legalized recreational marijuana, sales of potato chips, cookies and ice cream rose.

Dancing Prevents Senior Decline

Elderly Japanese women who danced for exercise were 73 percent less likely to be impaired eight years later doing “activities of daily living” such as walking, cooking, dressing and bathing.

U.S. Heart Disease on the Rise

An estimated 48 percent of American adults have cardiovascular disease, but about 80 percent of the time the disease can be prevented with precautionary medical care and lifestyle changes.

Mindfulness May Ease Menopausal Symptoms

Women in menopause that are mindful and nonjudgmental of their thoughts are less irritable, anxious and depressed, says the Mayo Clinic.

Prenatal Yoga Reduces Caesareans and Labor Pain

Mothers-to-be that practiced yoga had fewer C-sections, fewer low-weight newborns, and milder and briefer labor pains.

Fruits and Veggies Boost Moods

Based on health data of 40,000 people, British researchers found that simply eating more produce measurably heightens mental well-being.

Exercise Improves Young Brains, Too

Aerobic activities improve the executive thinking skills of both young and old people, report Columbia University researchers.

Selenium and CoQ10 Provide Lasting Benefits

Twelve years after a study ended, senior participants that had taken CoQ10 and selenium had lowered their cardiovascular mortality risk more than 40 percent.

Household Cleaning Products Affect Babies’ Guts and Weight

Canadian toddlers in households that used chemical disinfectants at least once a week had disturbed gut microbes and higher body mass index scores than toddlers in households that used vinegar or other eco-friendly cleaners.

Smoking Bans Lower Blood Pressure

Non-smokers in areas that have banned smoking in public space have lower systolic blood pressure.

Curcumin Boosts Fertility in Men

In a 10-week study, infertile Iranian men that took curcumin experienced a significant increase in sperm count, concentration and motility.

Sugary Drinks Linked to Kidney Disease

African-American adults that consumed the most sugar-sweetened drinks were 61 percent more likely to develop kidney disease within 13 years than those with the lowest consumption.

Probiotics Ease Bipolar Disorder

Hospitalized bipolar patients that took probiotic supplements upon release were three times less likely to re-enter the hospital than those given a placebo.

Gut Susceptible to Food Additives

Testing of food additives in a Czech lab found that gut microbes with anti-inflammatory properties were easily harmed by additives, while microbes with pro-inflammatory properties were mostly resistant.

Stress May Be Worse in the Evening

Faced with stress, cortisol levels rise strongly in the morning but not in the evening, suggesting that the human body is more equipped to deal with stress early in the day, say Japanese researchers.

Meditation and Music Slow Cellular Aging

Doing a chanting meditation or listening to classical music 12 minutes a day for three months altered biomarkers associated with cellular aging and Alzheimer’s disease in adults with early memory loss.

Vegetables and Orange Juice Protect Memory

A Harvard study of 27,842 older male health professionals found those that ate the most vegetables and drank the most orange juice suffered less memory loss over a span of two decades.

Lemon Balm Lowers Blood Pressure, Reduces LDL

Taking three grams a day of powdered lemon balm for two months significantly improved the condition of Iranian patients with chronic stable angina.

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