Foodies Health

Foodies Health

Are you a foodie? It means you’re passionate about food and love trying new dishes. Many people think those of us who fit this description are indulgent and gluttonous, let along pretentious. But a study from the famous Cornell Food and Brand Lab suggests the opposite: Foodies weigh less and could be in better health than the less discerning among us. The researchers asked 500 women about their weight satisfaction, lifestyle and personality traits and provided a list of 16 novel foods and asked them to report which ones they had tried. Those who had sampled nine or more of the foods on the list were considered “foodies” in the study and the rest were classified non-adventurous eaters. The research team adjusted the data to draw on possible associations between adventurous eating, BMI and body image. Those who said they had tried things like beef tongue, Kimchi and rabbit also described themselves as more concerned with healthfulness of what they ate than did those who stuck to traditional fare. Foodies were also more physically active and their BMI’s were slightly lower than their counterparts. The study authors say these findings are important to dieters because they show that promoting adventurous eating may provide a way for people — especially women — to lose or maintain weight without feeling restricted by a strict...
Talk Therapy for Insomnia

Talk Therapy for Insomnia

It’s practically an epidemic and it can really interfere with your life! Insomnia is notoriously difficult to deal with. But after reviewing a total of 20 studies, researchers say Non-drug talk therapy can help adults who lie awake in bed most nights. They came to the conclusion that instead of taking pills, insomniacs could benefit from techniques associated with cognitive behavior therapy. The essential elements are aimed at reducing anxiety and negative thoughts about sleeplessness, as well as relaxation techniques to minimize muscle tension and mental distractions. Before the treatment, the average time to get to sleep was just under an hour. The researchers found that after engaging in the sleep-enhancing practice, people fell asleep 20 minutes sooner, on average, and slept 30 minutes more each night. Up to 15 percent of adults worldwide regularly have sleep difficulties, which can lead to anxiety, depression and even type 2 diabetes.The study is published in the Annals of Internal...
Noise and Fat

Noise and Fat

Here’s another reason to hate excessive noise. According to Swedish researchers. Exposure to noise from traffic, trains, planes and maybe even deafening restaurants could be linked to a burgeoning belly. The study in Occupational & Environmental Medicine followed 5000 people around Stockholm for four years. It found that women had a 0.08-inch increase in waist size for every additional 5 decibels in noise exposure. For men the increase was .06 inches. And the risk of a larger waist rose with the number of sources of noise someone was exposed to at the same time. The scientists speculate that long-term exposure to noise, especially from traffic may affect our metabolism and lead to abdominal obesity. That’s because noise is stressful, and stress can alter levels of hormones which influence where in the body excess calories are deposited. Earlier research has shown associations between traffic noise and high blood pressure and heart attacks. They conclude that since abdominal obesity is a risk factor for many diseases, including heart disease and diabetes   noise should be recognized a serious threat to public...
Biological Age

Biological Age

Why do some people seem to get old before their time while others look like they haven’t aged a day since college? A team of researchers from Duke University studied a nearly 1000 people born within a year of each other and found a huge gulf in the speed at which their bodies aged. The subjects were from the same town in New Zealand and were all born in 1972-73. The scientists looked at 18 different ageing-related traits when the group turned 26, 32 and 38 years old. They measured everything from kidney and liver function to cardiovascular fitness and the condition of their gums. They found that at the age of 38, the people’s biological ages ranged from the late-20s to those who were nearly 60. In other words some people had almost stopped ageing during the period of the study, while others were gaining nearly three years of biological age for every twelve months that passed. One particularly interesting finding of the study was that the people who were physiologically older looked older, at least according to Duke undergraduates who were asked to guess their ages from their pictures. The researchers hope this work will help them prevent diseases by slowing down the the aging...
Calcium Supplements and Heart Risk

Calcium Supplements and Heart Risk

You may want to think twice about taking calcium supplements to boost bone health. Millions of people do. But now New Zealand researchers say the supplements can endanger cardiac health in older people and have little effect on bone strength. They analyzed 11 controlled trials involving 12,000 patients, and concluded that supplements raised the heart attack risk by 30 per cent in older women. The researchers say that increased risk is enough to completely counterbalance the small beneficial effect that calcium tablets have on numbers of fractures. Rather than relying on calcium supplements, they suggest people get their required calcium from food. At the very least, they say you should talk to your doctor before continuing with additional calcium. The report is published in the British Medical Journal. An editorial accompanying it said more research will be needed to determine if the heart attack risk is real. Also, this analysis did not look at what happens when calcium is taken with vitamin D – a popular...
Spicy Food and Longevity

Spicy Food and Longevity

Do you like spicy food? The science says it could help you live longer! Chinese researchers analyzed the diets of nearly 500,000 people for 7 years and found that those who ate spicy foods one or two days a week had a 10% reduced risk of death compared with those who ate such meals less than once a week. The risk was 14% lower for those who opted for hot food between three and seven days a week. The study published in BMJ said those who favoured spicy food had lower rates of heart disease, respiratory disease and cancer. The authors say that capsaicin, the main ingredient in chili peppers, had been found in other studies to have anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. The researchers still need more evidence from other populations to verify these findings before they would contemplate any change in dietary...