What Makes the Mediterranean Diet Healthy? New Research Spotlights Polyphenols

A new Spanish study has shed light on the fascinating health benefits of the Mediterranean diet, including wine in moderation. While the polyphenols in foods and wine are quickly broken down in the gut, the study found that the metabolites produced by polyphenols in the colon may be even more beneficial to heart health. Surprisingly, it was not the individual polyphenols that had the most impact, but the combination of polyphenols acting together. So, when it comes to healthy eating, the whole may be greater than the sum of its parts. Read full article here

Why Do Health Care Startups Have The Same Names As My Human Friends?

Health care startups have been increasingly opting for more personal, human names such as Maven, Renee, and Olive. According to branding expert Oliver Ralph, this is in an effort to make the companies seem more approachable and human-centered to younger people, who often have experienced bias or discrimination in the health care system. Companies like Ruth Health and HeyRenee are more focused on providing personalized care and connecting with their customers on an emotional level. The challenge in choosing a name lies in finding something unique and timeless, but also with the potential to create a deeper connection with the customer. Read full article here

The Truth About Gas Stoves

A new study has found that gas stoves can increase the risk of childhood asthma cases by 12.7 percent. This is alarming considering that 40 million U.S. households use gas stoves and the gas industry has been downplaying the risks for decades. Gas stoves can produce pollutants like nitrogen dioxide, formaldehyde, and carbon monoxide, as well as hazardous air pollutants like hexane and toluene. Low-income communities are especially vulnerable as switching to electric cooking may not be affordable, and proper ventilation is not always available. The gas industry is mounting an anti-electrification campaign to protect its interests, but it’s time to recognize the health risks associated with gas stoves. Read full article here

Why Some Cancers Shouldn’t Be Treated

The “war” against cancer has become too extreme in some cases, with over-diagnosis and unnecessary treatment leading to emotional distress and physical suffering. Studies have found that “active surveillance” of low-risk cancers leads to excellent outcomes, and doctors should be more cognizant of the risks of over-treatment. Some suggest that doctors can even avoid calling a tumor “cancer” to reduce the chance of a patient opting for surgery. This renewed approach to cancer can help reduce the physical and mental toll of over-diagnosis. Read full article here

Deficient in vitamin D

A recent study by Dr. Melough found that pregnant women with lower levels of vitamin D in their blood gave birth to children with more behavioral issues, from shyness to aggression and violence. Dr. Melough urges healthcare providers to be aware of this problem, as Black women are particularly at risk due to the melanin in their skin blocking out the UV light needed for vitamin D synthesis. Additionally, the average American diet won’t provide enough vitamin D, so high-dose supplements are needed to raise levels. Dr. Melough urges pregnant mothers to take a vitamin D supplement to prevent this deficiency and promote the health of their babies. Read full article here

After the War on Cancer

From Whispers to Shouts: The Ways We Talk About Cancer explores how cancer went from being a feared and stigmatized disease to one that is more openly discussed and treated. It highlights the tireless work of advocates, patients, and doctors to raise awareness about the disease and make it more socially acceptable, leading to increased research and better prognoses. However, despite all the progress made, access to the best available treatments is still a luxury, leaving many cancer patients with the burden of impossible medical bills and debt. Read full article here

Illusions of Steepness and Height

We may think we have a good sense of how high a hill is and how steep the climb will be, but recent studies suggest our perception of vertical distances is skewed. An experiment found that when judging the steepness of a hill, people overestimated its angle more when alone than when accompanied by a friend. Psychosocial resources, such as having a trusted friend nearby, can help us perceive challenges in our surroundings as less daunting. Interestingly, evolutionary psychologists believe this perceptual illusion helps us avoid danger, as we tend to overestimate heights. It seems our perceptions can be distorted for good evolutionary reasons. Read full article here

Taking vitamin D could help prevent dementia

New research suggests that taking vitamin D supplements may help protect against dementia. The study of over 12,000 participants found that those who took supplements had 40% fewer diagnoses of dementia over the course of ten years. Interestingly, the effects were significantly greater in female participants, people with normal cognition, and those without the APOEe4 gene, which is associated with a higher risk for Alzheimer’s dementia. Vitamin D is thought to help clear amyloid and tau proteins, both of which are involved in the development of dementia. Further research is needed to confirm the findings. Read full article here

80/20 Strength Training

The power of weightlifting is, to some, one of life’s most rewarding experiences. It’s surprisingly easy to get the majority of the benefits – all you need is two main exercises, the squat and the deadlift, done three times a week for an hour each session. You don’t need to invest in fancy equipment or supplements – just a good squat rack and some creatine monohydrate. With the right technique, effort and dedication, it is argued that you can make rapid progress and reap the unexpected rewards of better posture, less strain on your body, and even easier baby-carrying. Read full article here

Sweetener erythritol linked to heart problems

A US study has revealed that consuming large amounts of the sugar alcohol erythritol could lead to a heightened risk of cardiovascular problems. After drinking a beverage containing 30g of erythritol, blood levels of the sweetener spiked and remained 1000 times higher than normal for a few hours, and above threshold for over two days. While further research is needed, the findings suggest that those at risk of heart disease should avoid highly processed foods containing erythritol. Read full article here


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