Your Diabetes Risk Increases with Just 6 hours of Sleep Deprivation

By jeremyc | September 9, 2018

Sleep is important for many reasons. Lack of it can impact our health adversely, as shown by a new research that states the risk of diabetes increases when you’re deprived of sleep for just a single night.

Sleep is crucial for memory consolidation. During sleep, our brains remove toxins collected during the waking hours.

Sleep deprivation and mental illnesses share a reciprocal relationship. If you don’t get proper sleep and have a mental illness, it can become worse. Chronic sleep deprivation can even cause psychiatric condition. On the other hand, a mental illness can make it difficult for you to get adequate night-time sleep.

Lack of sleep, according to health experts, is a big health concern, especially in developed countries like the U.S. Because of many reasons, such as hectic jobs or irregular shifts, increased screen time, busy lives, and artificial lightening, nearly 33% of Americans sleep fewer than 7 hours at night, which is the recommended sleep duration.

More than one study has said that sleep deprivation is linked to increased diabetes risk. However, it also known that people who sleep fewer hours typically exercise less, eat more, and have excess body weight.

Previous studies couldn’t prove whether the increased diabetes risk in this population was because of sleep deprivation or these other factors.

To find the question, this team of researchers conducted a study on mice, all of whom were fed similar high-fat diets and weren’t allowed to exercise for 2 weeks. Next, the researchers ensured that one group was deprived of 6 hours of sleep one night while the other slept as usual.

The researchers noted sleep-deprived mice had increased levels of blood glucose in their livers. They also showed increased triglycerides levels in their livers, which is associated with increased insulin resistance.

Based on their findings, the researchers concluded lack of sleep on its own increases diabetes risk.

Topics: Diabetes, General Health News | No Comments »

Do Dementia Symptoms Become Worse In Winter

By jeremyc | September 8, 2018

According to a recent study, seasons affect cognitive abilities of seniors considerably, with winter leading to a noticeable drop in cognitive functioning.

One of the most telling examples of the impact of seasons on our brain is seasonal affective disorder, a depression that mostly hits people during winter.

Some studies have also concluded that winter is the time when the probability of the onset of schizophrenia is highest.

In a recent study, the researchers set out to find if Alzheimer’s disease is also affected by seasons.

To check the impact of seasons on dementia, the researchers looked into data of 3,533 seniors in the U.S., France, and Canada. Some of these participants had received an Alzheimer’s diagnoses while others had not.

Each participant had to go through neurological testing. After analyzing the data, the researchers found that cognitive functioning was much worse in winter and spring compared to summer and fall.

In other words, colder months seem to lower cognitive ability in seniors by and large. Moreover, during these months dementia symptoms are likely to worsen.

The researchers agree more research is needed. However, these findings could potentially lead to new treatments for dementia once scientists are able to identify the underlying mechanisms which cause seasonal improvement in cognitive functioning during summer and fall.

Topics: Dementia | No Comments »

All Kinds of Whole Grains Lower Risk of Type 2 Diabetes

By jeremyc | September 7, 2018

All types of whole grains are good for you from the point of view of limiting diabetes risk, according to a new study. The researchers advise people who want to adhere to a low-carb diet to not avoid eating whole grains.

This was a large scale study involving more than 55,000 people, who were followed for on average 15 years. At the end of the study, the researchers concluded that the risk of diabetes was noticeably lower in people who consumed whole grains of any type every day.

Previous research, too, has come up with similar results. However, there’s one big difference between those studies and this one. While earlier studies investigated only wheat, this time researchers considered different types of whole grains, like rye, wheat, and oats.

Participants of this study were aged between 50 and 65 and none had diabetes during the start of the study. Each of them gave information regarding their eating habits. This included their every day whole grain consumption.

The researchers noticed that nearly 7,400 participants received a diagnosis of diabetes in follow-up period.

The team found that daily intake of any whole grain type seemed to prevent diabetes type 2.

The maximum reduction in diabetes risk was seen in the group that had the highest daily whole grain intake, 50 grams or more. Compared with women with lowest daily whole grain intake, women in the “highest daily whole grain consumption” group had a 22% lower diabetes risk. In case of men, the risk was 34% lower.


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Walking Linked to Reduced Heart Failure Risk in 60+ Women

By jeremyc | September 6, 2018

The habit of regular walking is linked to many health benefits. A new study adds another benefit to this list: reduced risk of developing 2 heart failure subtypes in older women.

Congestive heart failure is a health condition that affects millions of people worldwide. In the U.S., no fewer than 5 million individuals have this condition.

Although the name of the condition might suggest a complete stopping of the heart, that’s not the case. What happens is that the heart stops pumping adequate amounts of blood.

Anyone, irrespective of his or her age, can develop this condition, but it is more common in people aged 60 and over. People with increased risk of heart failure should exercise more, avoid smoking, and consume foods that are good for the heart.

In this study the researchers set out to find how walking affects the risk of developing 2 subtypes of congestive heart failure: preserved ejection fraction heart failure, in which the ventricles are unable to hold adequate amounts of blood, and reduced ejection fraction heart failure, in which the blood pumped by the left ventricle is not enough to meet the body’s needs.

The first type is more common in older adults while the second type has a less encouraging outlook.

In their research, the experts focused on more than 35,000 women who have had either of the heart failure subtypes.

The researchers noted that every additional 30 to 45 mins of exercise, irrespective of its intensity, reduced heart failure risk in older women noticeably. Specifically, preserved ejection fraction heart failure risk was reduced by 8% and reduced ejection fraction heart failure by 10%.

According to the researchers, these findings are encouraging, as well as significant. As heart failure risk is considerably higher in people aged 60 and over, regular exercise can help them lower their risk.

Also, the researchers remarked, that their study gives people living with reduced ejection fraction heart failure something to cheer for because this subtype has a much poorer outlook compared to the other. This study has become the first one to show exercise levels are linked to a reduced risk of heart failure in women with reduced ejection fraction.

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Widely-Used Painkiller Linked to Increased Cardiovascular Event Risk

By jeremyc | September 5, 2018

A new study reveals that diclofenac, a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug that’s more widely used than other such drugs, increases the risk of major cardiovascular events.

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (also called NSAIDs) are used to relive pain. Millions of people in the U.S. take them each year.

Conditions for which these drugs are frequently taken are fever, headaches, and inflammatory conditions. While these drugs are widely used, they are believed to increase the risk of cardiovascular events.

A large-scale review by The European Society of Cardiology declared that people who have an increased risk to heart disease shouldn’t be prescribed nonaspirin NSAIDs.

Now this study investigates how diclofenac, which is used more than other NSAIDs, affects cardiovascular risk. The researchers studied 252 studies involving more than 6 million people.

The researchers investigated the cardiovascular risks associated with regular diclofenac use. Additionally, they also compared this risk to the cardiovascular risks linked to the use of naproxed, ibuprofen, or paracetamol.

The researchers noted that risk of major cardiovascular events, like heart failure, stroke, heart attack, etc., associated with diclofenac was much greater than other NSAIDs.

People who used diclofenac were found to have 50 percent greater risk of cardiovascular problems, compared to those who didn’t take it. In comparison with starting ibuprofen or paracetamol, starting diclofenac was linked to 20 percent increased risk of developing major cardiovascular events.


Topics: Cardiovascular | No Comments »

Having Gum Disease and Low Vitamin D Levels Might Mean Increased Diabetes Risk

By jeremyc | September 4, 2018

It seems vitamin D might be effective in keeping gum disease at bay, a condition which in turn can raise the risk of developing diabetes. How these three conditions are connected is something that the researchers aren’t clear, though.

Getting enough exercise, eating healthy, limiting the intake of processed foods and alcohol, not smoking, and keeping your blood pressure under check are all effective ways to lower diabetes risk. However, a couple more might be added to this list pretty soon—increasing the levels of vitamin D and preventing gum disease.

That said, researchers haven’t yet fully understood the connection between these three. At the same time, more than one study has said that there seems to be a link between them.

In a recent study, the researchers unearthed more evidence. When the researchers examined data from people aged over 30, they found that the risk of developing type 2 diabetes was higher among those who had gum disease (periodontitis) and low vitamin D levels.

There are several clinical trials underway in different parts of the world to check if taking more vitamin D can help lower diabetes risk.

At the very least, taking more vitamin D reduces your risk of periodontitis. This much is confirmed. It is very much possible that it might also reduce your diabetes risk. However, this is something that we will know in near future only.


Topics: General Health News | No Comments »

Mediterranean Diet Increases Longevity in Seniors

By jeremyc | September 3, 2018

New research shows a Mediterranean Diet improves mortality of older adults.

This is not the first study to investigate how a Mediterranean diet impacts longevity and health. But hardly any study has concentrated on elderly.

This recent research was done by Italian researchers, who studied almost 12,000 older adults in total. The research was done in two parts.

First, the experts focused on more than 5,000 individuals aged 65 and above for a period of about 8 years. In the second part, the researchers analyzed data of 6 relevant studies, taking the total sample size to nearly 12,000.

The researchers said they wanted to check if the Mediterranean diet affects the lifespan of elderly in the same way as general population.

Previous research shows the Mediterranean diet can lower mortality risk in the general population. Whether this is true for elderly too is something that has not been properly studied. This team set out to find out exactly that.

There are several definitions of what makes a diet a Mediterranean diet. However, broadly speaking, a Mediterranean diet is one that includes high amounts of plant foods like vegetables, fruits, nuts, whole cereals, olive oil and pulses; moderate amounts of meat, dairy, red wine, and fish; and low amounts of sweets and eggs.

For their study, the researches relied on a ten-point Mediterranean-diet scale, with scores ranging from 0 to 9.

A score of 9 implies maximum adherence to a Mediterranean diet while a zero score means lowest adherence.

In the first phase of their study, the researchers noted that every one-point increment in the score was linked to reduction in all-cause mortality.

The researchers came to similar results in the second phase of the study, too. They considered six studies and added the data of these studies to their first study.

When the researchers analyzed the combined data, they found a 5% reduction in all-cause mortality for every one point increment in the score on the Mediterranean diet scale.


Topics: General Health News | No Comments »

Liver Drug Shows Potential in Treating Alzheimer Disease

By jeremyc | September 2, 2018

Latest research shows an existing liver drug can help in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease. The name of the drug in question is ursodeoxycholic acid (UDCA) and targets Alzheimer’s at the cellular level.

It is estimated that no fewer than 5.7 million individuals in America are living with Alzheimer’s. Worldwide, there are 46.8 million Alzheimer’s patients.

Alzheimer’s disease, much like other forms of dementia, develops gradually but is progressive in nature. Symptoms include, among others, memory loss, disorientation, delusion, difficulty thinking and understanding, and forgetfulness.

Current treatments focus on reducing the rate at which some of these symptoms progresses. Precisely for this reason, researchers all over the world are busy finding a more targeted treatment, one which can heal the disease at the cellular level.

Now UK researchers have found that UDCA could help treat Alzheimer’s.

In previous research, this liver drug showed potential in stopping Parkinson’s disease progression. This it achieved by improving mitochondria’s functioning.

Mitochondria are the powerhouse of cells, providing them the energy they require to divide and grow.

Often, mitochondria dysfunction is a factor in Alzheimer’s disease. Such changes occur much before than the development of protein plaques in the brain.

In this new study, the researchers noted that UDCA improved mitochondrial function in tissues collected from Alzheimer’s patients.

According to the researchers, this is a huge finding and the first one to show a drug targeting Alzheimer’s at cellular level. While more research needs to be done on this, it is very much possible that this finding could ultimately pave way to a better treatment for Alzheimer’s.

Topics: Alzheimer's/Dementia | No Comments »

Experts Claim Milk and Cereal Breakfast Is Not Healthy Diabetes Patients

By jeremyc | August 31, 2018

Recently a study touted the health benefits of eating a bowl of cereal with milk for diabetics. However, critics state this finding is not only misleading but also harmful for people living with diabetes. According to them, the powerful diary industry is pushing this research.

A recently-published study suggests people who have type 2 diabetes should eat cereal with cow’s milk for better management of their blood sugar.

Experts, on the other hand, state that such a suggestion is dangerous and perhaps even manipulative. The study touting the benefits of eating cereal and milk in the morning was published in the Journal of Dairy Science which is part of the larger dairy industry.

It is a common knowledge now that people with diabetes should restrict their intake of carbs. A low-carb diet is considered ideal for them. Such a diet allows intake of 20-70 g of carbs each day.

Cereals, even the so-called healthier ones, on the other hand, are rich in carbs and sugar. Eating a bowl of cereals with cow’s milk contains about 60-65 g of carbs. Consuming so many carbs in your first meal of the day could be harmful for diabetes patients.

The problem is not only the high amount of carbs in cereals. They are also digested very rapidly. This in turn leads to a sudden spike in levels of blood sugar, which as you might know is not recommended for someone living with diabetes.


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Can Adjusting Your Meal Times A Little Aid Weight Loss

By jeremyc | August 30, 2018

In a recent study, the researchers worked with a type of intermittent fasting and showed how altering the timing of your dinner and breakfast could aid weight loss.

In last few years, intermittent fasting has garnered much interest mainly because of its ability help weight loss. It does this by encouraging the body to burn fats into energy.

There are different types of intermittent fasting models and one such model is time-limited eating. This model allows dieters to eat within a specific window of time every day. The eating window might range from anywhere between 6-12 hours a day.

In this study, the researchers wanted to see how does modifying the time patterns affects weight and several other health factors, like biomarkers for heart disease and diabetes.

The sample size of the study was rather small. Only 16 people participated in this study, which lasted for 10 weeks.

The researchers asked one group to take dinner an hour-and-a-half before than normal and breakfast an hour-and-a-half later than usual.

The researchers noted that people in the experimental group lost over two times more body fat compared to those who took their meals at their regular times.

The researchers also noticed that people who adjusted their meal times by 90 minutes every day ate less amounts of food compared to the participants belonging to control group.



Topics: Weight Loss | No Comments »

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