In a sobering statistic for the Baby Boomer generation (as well as their adult children), it is now reported that one out of three elderly Americans dies suffering from issues related to Alzheimer’s Disease or dementia.
The Alzheimer’s Association recently released its 2013 annual summary of disease facts and figures, including the fact that 5 million Americans are suffering from the cognitive diminishment associated with the mentally wasting disease.
The implications for families and loved ones of Alzheimer’s sufferers are equally devastating. In 2012 some 15 million unpaid caregivers provided 17 billion hours of care to people suffering from the neurological disorder.
This disturbing news makes it even more vital for adults to do everything possible to prevent the illness. Healthy lifestyle habits such as regular exercise, consumption of a healthy diet, maintaining a normal weight and doing brain-stimulating activities, such as crossword puzzles, are all known to help prevent Alzheimer’s.
Want to cut down on those night-time snack attacks and junk food binges? Eat a protein-packed breakfast. That’s the advice from experts at the University of Missouri, who say that in a study of young adults they found that eating a protein-rich breakfast of eggs or lean beef curbed their appetites for high-fat, high-sugar foods later in the day. In their study, which also included groups of breakfast skippers and cereal-and-milk eaters, it was the protein-eating group who told researchers they were less hungry at meals throughout the day and less likely to crave junk food. The researchers suggest that their findings may have implications for anyone trying to lose weight and make healthier food choices throughout the day.
New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s recent attempt to ban supersized sodas seemed a little overzealous to some critics, but new research suggests the mayor may really save some lives if it goes into effect.
That’s one interpretation you could make from a study recently presented at an American Heart Association conference, which blames sugary drinks (think soda, fruity drinks and sports thirst-quenchers) with a whopping 180,000 worldwide deaths a year.
Harvard researchers suggest in their study that these drinks are a major factor in the diabetes epidemic and contribute to some 25,000 American deaths each year.
If that isn’t enough for you to dump your soft drink habit (and discourage kids from sipping sugary drinks), consider this: Latin American countries, which have high rates of sugary drink consumption, had very high rates of death associated with this phenomenon. Meanwhile, Japan, which has one of the lowest rates of soda consumption, showed low death rates associated with sweetened drinks.
Menopausal women who take hormone replacement pills seem to be at greater risk of needing surgery to treat gallstones, according to a study recently published in the journal of the Canadian Medical Association.
Interestingly, women who wear an estrogen patch to help ease symptoms related to menopause do not seem to have a higher incidence of gallbladder disease.
Researchers in France, where transdermal hormone patches tend to be preferred over pills often prescribed in North America, compared the two medication options to see if there were different risks and side effects. They discovered hormone pill-takers have much higher rates of gallbladder surgery. The study, however, did not establish a specific cause-and-effect relationship.
“Complicated gallstone disease should be added to the list of potential adverse events to be considered when balancing the benefits and risks associated with menopausal hormone therapy,” says Dr. Antoine Racine, of the French National Institute for Health and Medical Research and Paris-Sud University in a CMAJ press release.
Think your sunscreens has got you covered?
Sometimes, that hasn’t always been so obvious as some sunscreens do the job of preventing sunburn, but lack the broad spectrum protection necessary to protect against skin cancer.
However, dermatologists believe new regulations recently enacted by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration should take some of the guesswork out of choosing the right protection for you and your family.
New labeling requirements, recently outlined in a press advisory by the American Academy of Dermatology, stipulate that sunscreen labels clearly state the following:
- Whether a protect offers broad spectrum protection; shielding you from UVA and UVB light which can prevent both burns and skin cancers.
- Has the minimum SPF of 30 or higher. While products containing an SPF of 15 can protect against burns, they don’t guard against skin cancer.
- Has a skin cancer/skin aging alert if the products only guard against sunburn, but don’t contain enough SPF factor to protect against cancer or the aging effects of the sun.
- Whether the product is water resistant for 40 or 80 minutes. The FDA has insistent that sunscreen manufacturers stop labeling their products waterproof or sweat resistant, saying those labels are misleading.
Want to cut down on those night-time snack attacks and junk food binges? Eat a protein-packed breakfast. That’s the advice from experts at the University of Missouri who say that in a study of young adults, they found that eating a protein-rich breakfast of eggs or lean beef curbed their appetites for high-fat, high-sugar foods later in the day. In their study—which also included groups of breakfast skippers, cereal-and-milk eaters—it was the protein eating group who told researchers they were less hungry at meals throughout the day and less likely to crave junk food. The researchers suggest that eating their findings may have implications for anyone trying to lose weight and make healthier food choices throughout the day.
Is the sound of the kids fighting, the car radio or the chatter at the local coffee house making you bonkers? Well, the cause could be stress, according to a new study out of Sweden.
Researchers there have found that when women are suffering from acute emotional exhaustion, they are more likely to be hyper sensitive to sound.
Indeed women participating in a study conducted by researchers at Sweden’s Karolinski Institute found that even normal conversations can be painful to females experiencing acute stress.
Women participating in the study were evaluated after being put through a series of stressful tasks and then being gauged on their response to certain sounds. Participants who were experiencing low levels of stress did not report the same acute stress responses as their peers.
Researchers noted their findings, which were recently reported in the journal Plos One, indicate the need for including comprehensive stress evaluations when treating hearing disorders.