Archive for December 6th, 2012

Health tip of the day

Thursday, December 6th, 2012

Choose vegetables which are rich in colour. Fill your plate with tomatoes, potatoes, acron squash, peas and the like. These are full of vitamins and minerals and taste great.

15 new genes associated with heart disease identified

Thursday, December 6th, 2012

A large, international consortium of scientists has identified fifteen new genetic regions associated with coronary artery disease – taking a significant step forward in understanding the root causes of this deadly disease.

The new research brings the total number of validated genetic links with heart disease discovered through genome-wide association studies to 46.

Coronary artery disease is the process by which plaque builds up in the wall of heart vessels, eventually leading to chest pain and potentially lethal heart attacks. It is the leading cause of death worldwide.

The study, which includes researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine, provides insights into the molecular pathways causing coronary artery disease, which is also known as coronary atherosclerosis.

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Running too fast may pose heart risk for older athletes

Thursday, December 6th, 2012

Older athletes speeding to the finish line may be racing toward the end of life, new research has warned.

“Running too fast, too far and for too many years may speed one’s progress toward the finish line of life,” the paper quotes an editorial written for next month’s British journal Heart.

Researchers analyzed 52,600 runners and non-runners over three decades.

Overall, the runners enjoyed a 19 percent lower death rate than their non-running peers, but the runners who ran a lot (over 20-25 miles a week) did not, Discovery News reported.

Another study found that running at a top speed of 8 miles per hour produced the most longevity benefits.

“After age 50, pushing too hard is probably not good for one’s heart or longevity,” study author and sports cardiologist James OiKeefe told the paper.

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Abused kids may suffer from mood disorders in adulthood

Thursday, December 6th, 2012

Adults who were exposed to trauma in early childhood are more likely to suffer from anxiety and mood disorders, as traumatic experience induces lasting changes to their gene regulation, according to scientists.

Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Psychiatry in Munich have now documented for the first time that genetic variants of the FKBP5 gene can influence epigenetic alterations in this gene induced by early trauma.

In individuals with a genetic predisposition, trauma causes long-term changes in DNA methylation leading to a lasting dysregulation of the stress hormone system.

As a result, those affected find themselves less able to cope with stressful situations throughout their lives, frequently leading to depression, post-traumatic stress disorder or anxiety disorders in adulthood. Doctors and scientists hope these discoveries will yield new treatment strategies tailored to individual patients, as well as increased public awareness of the importance of protecting children from trauma and its consequences.

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Applying lipstick can harm your IQ

Thursday, December 6th, 2012

A new study involving 22 brands of lipstick found that 55 percent contained trace amounts of lead.

Underwriters Laboratories revealed that 12 of the lip products sampled tested positive for the toxic substance with the highest levels at 3.22 parts per million, the Daily Mail reported.

Commenting on the findings Dr Sean Palfrey, medical director for the Boston Lead Poisoning Prevention Program, warned that even low-level lead exposure poses a serious health risk and could affect mental health.

He told GMA, which commissioned the study: “What we know now is that even the lowest levels of lead can harm your IQ, your behavior, your ability to learn.”

Many anti-lead activists also stress the need to shield children and pregnant women.

Dr Halyna Breslawec, chief scientist for the Personal Care Products Council, added “If you were serious about the public health aspects of lead poisoning you would not be looking at lipstick.”

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Male fertility problems ‘may arise due to frequent sex’

Thursday, December 6th, 2012

Some fertility problems may arise because men simply have intercourse too frequently, researchers say.

An increasing number of men suffer from fertility problems, especially in western society and the general belief is that many problems may be related to stress.

Fertility tests frequently reveal that males have problems with the quality of their sperm.

The problems often relate to sperm senescence, which is a reduction in quality with age. Sperm senescence can arise either before or after the DNA in the sperm cells is produced by a process known as meiosis.

So-called “pre-meiotic” senescence results from accumulated damage in the germline cells with increasing age and results in older males having sperm of lower quality.

Post-meiotic senescence occurs after the sperm cells have been produced, either during storage of sperm by the male or after ejaculation and before they fertilize the eggs.

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