Health The leading source for timely and credible health, fitness, nutrition and anti aging news, studies tips and other wellness information. http://www.mybesthealthportal.net Tue, 21 Nov 2017 16:51:39 -0800 Joomla! 1.7 - Open Source Content Management en-gb Breast Cancer Risk Increases when Working Night Shifts http://www.mybesthealthportal.net/health/disease-and-conditions/cancer/breast-cancer/breast-cancer-risk-increases-when-working-night-shifts.html http://www.mybesthealthportal.net/health/disease-and-conditions/cancer/breast-cancer/breast-cancer-risk-increases-when-working-night-shifts.html

breast cancer risk ribbonWomen who regularly work into the early hours can be nearly four times as likely to develop breast cancer, according to the findings published online in Occupational and Environmental Medicine.

The risk is highest among women who are naturally early risers. But even night owls are in danger.

The threat rose with the more night shifts they did, the study found.

Night owls were twice as likely to have breast cancer, and overall there was a 40 percent bigger risk compared to women who worked days.

The results were based on 692 responses, of which 141 were from women with breast cancer. The risk almost quadrupled if they were early bird types possibly because they are more susceptible to body clock disruption.

Disturbing normal sleep patterns is thought to curb the cancer-protecting hormone melatonin, which is produced by the brain in the day.

The results indicate frequent night shift work increases the risk for breast cancer and suggest a higher risk with longer duration of night shift according to Dr Johnni Hansen, of the Danish Cancer Society that did the study.

"Those with morning preference tended to have a higher risk than those with evening preference," Dr Hansen stated.

The study also indicated working up to two night shifts a week had no impact as it may not be long enough to disrupt the body clock.

  • breast cancer
  • breast cancer risk
  • night shifts
    ]]>
    west@hotmail.com (Jeff Behar) Breast Cancer Sun, 16 Jun 2013 00:00:00 -0700
    Are these Everyday Items Linked to Increase Cancer Risk in your Everyday Life? http://www.mybesthealthportal.net/health/disease-and-conditions/cancer/10-everyday-items-that-increase-your-risk-for-cancer.html http://www.mybesthealthportal.net/health/disease-and-conditions/cancer/10-everyday-items-that-increase-your-risk-for-cancer.html

    cancer-causing-productsCancer remains to be at the top of the list of the most common causes of death across the world, and studies show there are many everyday items being used by most of the population contributing to this increased risk of cancer. Are these everyday cancer risks in your daily life?

    Alcohol. While a glass of wine a day may help your health, excessively indulging in alcoholic drinks can make you become more prone not only to one but different kinds of cancer, such as liver cancer, esophagus cancer, mouth cancer, colon cancer, and breast cancer. Alcohol can increase the chances of getting breast cancer among women by as much as 30 percent.

    Cellular phones. There is still an ongoing debate over this matter. But the World Health Organization has already concluded that the radio frequency electromagnetic fields emitted by these gadgets can possibly cause cancer in the brain. As of this moment, there is still limited evidence to prove the relation between cell phone and cancer. But it would not hurt to do take precautions. Something as simple as using headsets instead putting the phone directly to your ears can help.

    Antiperspirant products. Aluminum in particular has been found to be a main contributor to breast cancer. What the antiperspirant does is it stops perspiration. By doing so, it encourages toxin deposits in the lymph nodes which may lead to breast cancancercer.

    Talc powder. Talc has been under close scrutiny for years. This is because it has been found to have some similarities with asbestos. Talc can cause lung cancer and promote the growth of tumors in the ovaries.

    Burned meat. When meat is cooked until it becomes burned, it releases toxins. It particularly creates a carcinogen known as heterocyclic aromatic amines. Despite this fact being common knowledge though, some people still can't kick off the habit of eating charred meat.

    Cured meat. These meats contain nitrates. It is common among hotdogs, bacon, sausages and lunch meat among others.

    Fried treats. Fried food should be avoided not only because they increase the body's cholesterol levels. It is also because foods that have been fried using extremely high temperatures contain acrylamide which is a type of carcinogen.

    Doughnuts. Because of their high sugar content and the deep fat frying process they go through, doughnuts are a carcinogenic filled treat.

    Soft drinks and juices. Sweetened beverages in general are filled with refined sugar. It is also a fact that carcinogens feed on sugar. In which case, these beverages can help promote the growth and formation of tumors. Aside from the high sugar content, these drinks are also filled with certain additives that are not good for the health. As such, sweetened beverages should never take the place of vitamins and minerals, as well as other nutrients.

    Bubble bath for children. Products that contain sodium lauryl sulfate are known to affect the skin's mucous lining. Prolonged usage increases the risk of cancer.

    There are a number of other factors that may bring about cancer. What is more alarming is that these things have become part of people's lives and it will take a conscious effort to avoid them. But with proper information, we can all make a change and hopefully avoid cancer.

    Source: http://www.naturalnews.com/039089_cancer_avoidance_items.html#ixzz2KsL1hyvF

    • cancer risk factors
    • cancer risks
    • cancer
      ]]>
      west@hotmail.com (Jeff Behar) Cancer Fri, 07 Nov 2014 00:00:00 -0800
      10 Everyday Items that increase your Risk for Cancer http://www.mybesthealthportal.net/health/disease-and-conditions/cancer/10-everyday-items-that-increase-your-risk-for-cancer.html http://www.mybesthealthportal.net/health/disease-and-conditions/cancer/10-everyday-items-that-increase-your-risk-for-cancer.html

      cancerCancer remains to be at the top of the list of the most common causes of fatalities. This fatal disease can affect anyone. And there are everyday items that increase the risk of cancer. These items that can bump up your cancer risk include:

      Cellular phones. There is still an ongoing debate over this matter. But the World Health Organization has already concluded that the radio frequency electromagnetic fields emitted by these gadgets can possibly cause cancer in the brain. As of this moment, there is still limited evidence to prove the relation between cell phone and cancer. But it would not hurt to do take precautions. Something as simple as using headsets instead putting the phone directly to your ears can help.

      Fried treats. Fried food should be avoided not only because they increase the body's cholesterol levels. It is also because foods that have been fried using extremely high temperatures contain acrylamide which is a type of carcinogen.

      Alcohol. Excessively indulging in alcoholic drinks can make you become more prone not only to one but different kinds of cancer which can affect the liver, esophagus, mouth, colon, and breasts. As a matter of fact, it can increase the chances of getting breast cancer among women by as much as 30 percent.

      Burned meat. When meat is cooked until it becomes burned, it releases toxins. It particularly creates a carcinogen known as heterocyclic aromatic amines. Despite this fact being common knowledge though, some people still can't kick off the habit of eating charred meat.

      Cured meat. These meats contain nitrates. It is common among hotdogs, bacon, sausages and lunch meat among others.

      Soft drinks and juices. Sweetened beverages in general are filled with refined sugar. It is also a fact that carcinogens feed on sugar. In which case, these beverages can help promote the growth and formation of tumors. Aside from the high sugar content, these drinks are also filled with certain additives that are not good for the health. As such, sweetened beverages should never take the place of vitamins and minerals, as well as other nutrients.cancer-causing-products

      Doughnuts. Because of their high sugar content and the deep fat frying process they go through, doughnuts are a carcinogenic filled treat.

      Antiperspirant products. Aluminum in particular has been found to be a main contributor to breast cancer. What the antiperspirant does is it stops perspiration. By doing so, it encourages toxin deposits in the lymph nodes which may lead to breast cancer.

      Talc powder. Talc has been under close scrutiny for years. This is because it has been found to have some similarities with asbestos. Talc can cause lung cancer and promote the growth of tumors in the ovaries.

      Bubble bath for children. Products that contain sodium lauryl sulfate are known to affect the skin's mucous lining. Prolonged usage increases the risk of cancer.

      There are a number of other factors that may bring about cancer. What is more alarming is that these things have become part of people's lives and it will take a conscious effort to avoid them. But with proper information, we can all make a change and hopefully avoid cancer.

      Source: http://www.naturalnews.com/039089_cancer_avoidance_items.html#ixzz2KsL1hyvF

      • cancer risk factors
      • cancer risks
      • cancer
        ]]>
        west@hotmail.com (Jeff Behar) Cancer Tue, 21 Jan 2014 00:00:00 -0800
        Male Patterned Baldness may Predict Heart Disease http://www.mybesthealthportal.net/health/men-s-health/male-patterned-baldness-may-predict-heart-disease.html http://www.mybesthealthportal.net/health/men-s-health/male-patterned-baldness-may-predict-heart-disease.html

        vertex baldness heart diseaseMale pattern baldness may be a telltale sign of heart disease, a review of six studies involving nearly 40,000 men suggests.

        The meta-analysis, published in the online journal BMJ Open, showed that vertex baldness, but not frontal baldness, was significantly associated with an increased risk of chronic heart disease (CHD).

        "The association with CHD depends on the severity of vertex baldness and also exists among younger men," wrote Tomohide Yamada, MD, of the University of Tokyo, and colleagues.

        American Heart Association (AHA) spokesperson Nieca Goldberg, MD, a cardiologist at New York University, said that the reason for the link between vertex baldness and CHD is unclear.

        While the mechanism is being worked out, physicians can still act, Goldberg said. "If a patient comes in with male pattern baldness and hasn't been screened for CHD risk factors, it is time to do that," said Goldberg, who was not involved with the work.

        For the study, the Japanese researchers combed the Medline and the Cochrane Library databases for research published on male pattern baldness and CHD. They found 850 studies, published between 1950 and 2012.

        Three cohort studies and three case-control studies met all the eligibility criteria and were included in the analysis. All had been published between 1993 and 2008, and involved 36,990 men.

        Among the findings:

        • Men with severe baldness were 32% more likely to develop CHD than men who retained a full head of hair (P = 0.008). When the analysis was confined to younger men (aged 60 or younger), a similar association emerged.
        • In the three case-control studies, the adjusted relative risk for baldness was 1.70 for all participants (P = 0.03) and 1.84 for younger men (P = 0.0001).
        • Three studies assessed the degree of baldness using the modified Hamilton scale. Analysis of these results showed that only vertex baldness was significantly associated with CHD and the link was dependent on the severity of baldness.
        • Extensive vertex baldness boosted the risk by 48% (P = 0.03), moderate vertex baldness by 36% (P 0.001), and mild vertex baldness by 18% (P 0.001). In contrast, there was no significnt assoiation between frontal baldness and CHD (P = 0.28).

        To compensate for differences in the methods of assessing baldness in the studies, the authors performed a sensitivity analysis that used personal scales to classify baldness: none; frontal; crown-top; or combined. The results were similar.

        The big question is how losing hair on the top of the head is associated with heart disease.

        "It has been suggested that classical coronary risk factors (e.g. age, hypertension, dyslipidemia and smoking) might influence both conditions, so that baldness is a marker of atherosclerosis.

        "It has also been postulated that baldness is linked to CHD by mechanisms such as hyperinsulinemia, chronic inflammation and increased peripheral sensitivity to androgen," the authors wrote.

        Goldberg said all those theories are worth pursuing. Still, it could turn out that baldness is just a sign of aging, she said.

        The analysis from researchers in Japan follows by less than a week a case-control study that linked early onset baldness in African-American men to increased risk of prostate cancer.

        Even while the reasons for the association between vertex baldness and CHD are worked out, Goldberg said it's better safe than sorry: Screen previously untested men who present with vertex baldness for CHD risk factors. Tell us what you think by using the Add Your Knowledge link below. -- Sanjay Gupta, MD.

        The authors and Goldberg had no relevant disclosures.

        Reference: Yamada T, et al "Male pattern baldness and its association with coronary heart disease: a meta-analysis" BMJ Open 2013; DOI: 10.1136/bmjopen-2012-002537.

        • CHD
        • vertex baldness
        • Male pattern baldness
        • baldness
        • heart disease
          ]]>
          west@hotmail.com (Jeff Behar) Men's Health Mon, 21 Apr 2014 00:00:00 -0700
          Low T Linked to Arthritis http://www.mybesthealthportal.net/health/men-s-health/low-t-linked-to-arthritis.html http://www.mybesthealthportal.net/health/men-s-health/low-t-linked-to-arthritis.html

          low-tLower testosterone levels were predictive of rheumatoid factor (RF)-negative rheumatoid arthritis (RA) in men according to a new case-control study. Low testosterone raised the odds for subsequent diagnosis of rheumatoid factor (RF)-negative RA by 69% as compared with men who had normal values. Men who developed RF-negative RA also had significantly higher levels of follicle-stimulating hormone prior to diagnosis.

          The findings suggest that hormonal changes precede the onset of RA in men and influence the phenotype of the disease, Mitra Pikwer, MD, of Lund University in Malmö, Sweden, and co-authors reported online in Annals of Rheumatic Diseases.

          "Since this is the first major study of testosterone and related hormones in the preclinical phase of RA, our findings should be verified in other populations," the authors concluded.

          The risk of RA involves interplay among genetic, environmental, and hormonal factors. The disease predominately affects women in the premenopausal period, but the sex difference decreases with increasing age.

          Cross-sectional studies have shown low testosterone in men and women with RA as compared with people unaffected by the disease. Because proinflammatory cytokines suppress the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis, low testosterone levels might occur as a consequence of RA-associated inflammation, the authors noted in their introduction.

          A single prospective study has examined the relationship between testosterone and RA in men and showed no significant associations. However, the study involved a small number of men and did not control for confounders, the authors continued.

          Evaluation of other hormones, such as follicle-stimulating hormone and luteinizing hormone, is necessary to interpret differences in testosterone levels, they wrote. Measurement of sex hormone-binding globulin is required to calculate levels of free testosterone.

          Given the lack of information about hormonal influences and the risk of RA in men, Pikwer and colleagues reviewed data from the Malmö Preventive Medicine Program, which involved 22,444 men born in Malmö from 1921 to 1949 and 10,902 women born from 1925 to 1938.

          At enrollment, study participants had the option to provide fasting blood samples, which were frozen for future evaluation.

          Investigators previously identified study participants who developed RA by the end of 2004. Pikwer and colleagues determined that 104 of the patients had contributed serum samples, and they were matched with 174 Malmö Preventive Medicine Program participants who did not develop RA and who had provided serum samples.

          The median time from program screening to RA diagnosis was 12.7 years. The RF status at diagnosis or afterward could be ascertained for 83 of the cases. At enrollment in the study, the patients and control group had a mean age of 45 to 46, and age at RA diagnosis was 59 for both groups.

          The RA group had a lower body mass index (BMI) at enrollment in the program. BMI had a negative correlation with testosterone and free testosterone levels (P0.001 for both) but not with other hormones. Smoking was associated with RA and with higher levels of all the hormones measured (testosterone, free testosteone, follicle-stimulating hormone, leutinizing hormone, and sex hormone-binding globulin).

          The cases had lower levels of all hormones except free testosterone -- which was the same -- and sex hormone-binding globulin, which was higher in the cases.

          The authors found that 22 of 83 cases had RF-negative RA.

          Unadjusted analyses yielded a trend toward an inverse association between testosterone (free and total) and RF-negative RA and a significant positive association between follicle-stimulating hormone levels and RF-negative RA (13.1 IU/L versus 0.80 IU/L for all 104 cases, 95% CI 1.70 to 100).

          After adjustment for BMI and smoking status, the investigators found inverse associations of both testosterone and free testosterone with RF-negative RA (OR 0.31 and OR 0.38 per standard deviation, respectively). Follicle-stimulating hormone levels had a significant positive association with RF-negative RA (OR 11.5, 95% CI 1.46 to 91.1).

          Multivariate analysis showed a trend toward a negative association between testosterone levels (total and free) and any diagnosis of RA. Follicle-stimulating hormone levels had a negative association with RF-positive RA (OR 0.42, 95% CI 0.20 to 0.88).

          The authors acknowledged the predominately Caucasian-Scandinavian heritage of the population that could limit the applicability of the findings to other ethnic groups or populations in other geographic areas.

          The study was supported by the Swedish Research Council, the Swedish Rheumatism Association, Lund University, and the County of Skane.

          The authors reported no potential conflicts of interest.

          Reference: Pikwer M, et al "Association between testosterone levels and risk of future rheumatoid arthritis in men: a population-based case-control study" Ann Rheum Dis 2013; DOI: 10.1136/annrheumdis.2012.202781.

          • rheumatoid arthritis
          • arthritus
          • Low T
            ]]>
            west@hotmail.com (Jeff Behar) Men's Health Mon, 21 Apr 2014 00:00:00 -0700
            Acting Out Dreams Linked to Dementia Development http://www.mybesthealthportal.net/health/latest-health-and-medicine-studies/acting-out-dreams-linked-to-dementia-development.html http://www.mybesthealthportal.net/health/latest-health-and-medicine-studies/acting-out-dreams-linked-to-dementia-development.html

            elderly woman sleepingThe strongest predictor of whether a man is developing dementia with Lewy bodies is whether he acts out his dreams while sleeping, Mayo Clinic researchers have discovered.  Dementia with Lewy bodies is the second most common form of dementia in the elderly.

            Patients are five times more likely to have dementia with Lewy bodies if they experience a condition known as rapid eye movement (REM) sleep behavior disorder than if they have one of the risk factors now used to make a diagnosis, such as fluctuating cognition or hallucinations, according to a study presented at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology in San Diego.

            REM sleep behavior disorder is caused by loss of the normal muscle paralysis that occurs during REM sleep. It can appear three decades or more before a diagnosis of dementia with Lewy bodies is made in males, the researchers say. The link between dementia with Lewy bodies and the sleep disorder is not as strong in women, they add.

            “While it is, of course, true that not everyone who has this sleep disorder develops dementia with Lewy bodies, as many as 75 to 80 percent of men with dementia with Lewy bodies in our Mayo database did experience REM sleep behavior disorder. So it is a very powerful marker for the disease,” says lead investigator Melissa Murray, Ph.D., a neuroscientist at Mayo Clinic in Florida.

            The dementia study’s findings could improve diagnosis of this dementia, which can lead to beneficial treatment, Dr. Murray says.

            “Screening for the sleep disorder in a patient with dementia could help clinicians diagnose either dementia with Lewy bodies or Alzheimer’s disease,” she says. “It can sometimes be very difficult to tell the difference between these two dementias, especially in the early stages, but we have found that only 2 to 3 percent of patients with Alzheimer’s disease have a history of this sleep disorder.”

            Once the diagnosis of dementia with Lewy bodies is made, patients can use drugs that can treat cognitive issues, Dr. Murray says. No cure is currently available.

            Researchers at Mayo Clinic in Minnesota and Florida, led by Dr. Murray, examined magnetic resonance imaging, or MRI, scans of the brains of 75 patients diagnosed with probable dementia with Lewy bodies. A low-to-high likelihood of dementia was made upon an autopsy examination of the brain.

            The researchers checked the patients’ histories to see if the sleep disorder had been diagnosed while under Mayo care. Using this data and the brain scans, they matched a definitive diagnosis of the sleep disorder with a definite diagnosis of dementia with Lewy bodies five times more often than they could match risk factors, such as loss of brain volume, now used to aid in the diagnosis. The researchers also showed that low-probability dementia with Lewy bodies patients who did not have the sleep disorder had findings characteristic of Alzheimer’s disease.

            “When there is greater certainty in the diagnosis, we can treat patients accordingly. Dementia with Lewy bodies patients who lack Alzheimer’s-like atrophy on an MRI scan are more likely to respond to therapy — certain classes of drugs — than those who have some Alzheimer’s pathology,” Dr. Murray says.

            • dematia
            • Dementia with Lewy bodies
            • Alzheimer’s disease
              ]]>
              west@hotmail.com (Jeff Behar) Latest Health and Medicine Studies Sun, 31 Mar 2013 00:00:00 -0700
              Good Nights Sleep Can Help the Heart Stay Healthy http://www.mybesthealthportal.net/health/health-and-wellness-tips/good-nights-sleep-can-help-the-heart-stay-healthy.html http://www.mybesthealthportal.net/health/health-and-wellness-tips/good-nights-sleep-can-help-the-heart-stay-healthy.html

              woman sleeping with dogCutting back on sodium and increasing physical activity are not the only ways to improve heart health – a good night’s sleep can also help promote cardiovascular health. One expert at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) says not getting enough sleep can have harmful heart-health effects.

              The ideal amount of sleep is between six to eight hours, said cardiologist Alan S. Gertler, M.D., associate professor of medicine in UAB’s Division of Cardiovascular Diseases and part of UAB’s Heart & Vascular Services.

              “Deep, high-quality sleep is needed to lower heart rate and blood pressure, which reduce stress on the heart,” Gertler explained.

              Heart rate and blood pressure also rise and fall during rapid eye movement (REM) in response to dreams. According to the National Institutes of Health, those variable rates also contribute to making the heart healthier.

              “Without enough sleep, there is an increase in blood pressure and stress hormones, lower glucose tolerance and weight gain,” Gertler said. “All of these factors can increase the risk of coronary artery disease.”

              Sleep deprivation, which generally results from getting less than six hours of sleep per night, “can lead to elevated C-reactive protein (CRP) levels, which may be a marker of inflammation of the endothelial lining of the arteries, which can increase the risk of atherosclerosis,” Gertler stated.

              Another sleep-related issue that can lead to heart problems is sleep apnea.

              “Sleep apnea is a very common problem,” Gertler said. “It causes not enough air to get into the lungs through the mouth and nose during sleep, decreasing the amount of oxygen in your blood. As a result, sleep is interrupted through the night, and the risk of high blood pressure, heart attack, cardiac arrhythmias and stroke increase.”

              Gertler urges any patient who struggles with sleep to discuss the problem with his or her primary care doctor.

              • sleep
              • heart health
              • cardiovascular health
                ]]>
                west@hotmail.com (Jeff Behar) Health and Wellness Tips Fri, 29 Mar 2013 00:00:00 -0700
                Visceral Fat Linked to Colon Cancer http://www.mybesthealthportal.net/health/disease-and-conditions/cancer/visceral-fat-linked-to-colon-cancer.html http://www.mybesthealthportal.net/health/disease-and-conditions/cancer/visceral-fat-linked-to-colon-cancer.html

                Vfat manisceral fat, or fat stored deep in the abdominal cavity, is directly linked to an increased risk for colon cancer, according to data from a mouse study published in Cancer Prevention Research, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research.

                “There has been some skepticism as to whether obesity per se is a bona fide cancer risk factor, rather than the habits that fuel it, including a poor diet and a sedentary lifestyle,” said Derek M. Huffman, Ph.D., postdoctoral fellow at the Institute for Aging Research at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in Bronx, N.Y. “Although those other lifestyle choices play a role, this study unequivocally demonstrates that visceral adiposity is causally linked to intestinal cancer.”

                Prior research has shown that obesity markedly increases the likelihood of being diagnosed with and dying from many cancers. Huffman and colleagues sought to determine if removing visceral fat in mice genetically prone to developing colon cancer might prevent or lessen the development of these tumors.

                They randomly assigned the mice to one of three groups. Mice in the first group underwent a sham surgery and were allowed to eat an unrestricted “buffet style” diet, for the entirety of the study, which resulted in these mice becoming obese. Those in the second group were also provided an unrestricted diet and became obese, but they had their visceral fat surgically removed at the outset of the study. Mice in the third group also underwent a sham surgery, but were provided only 60 percent of the calories consumed by the other mice in order to reduce their visceral fat by dieting.

                “Our sham-operated obese mice had the most visceral fat, developed the greatest number of intestinal tumors, and had the worst overall survival,” Huffman said. “However, mice that had less visceral fat, either by surgical removal or a calorie-restricted diet, had a reduction in the number of intestinal tumors. This was particularly remarkable in the case of our group where visceral fat was surgically removed, because these mice were still obese, they just had very little abdominal fat.”

                The researchers then subdivided the groups by gender. In female mice, the removal of visceral fat was significantly related to a reduction in intestinal tumors, but calorie restriction was not. In male mice, calorie restriction had a significant effect on intestinal tumors, but removal of visceral fat did not.

                “This suggests that there are important gender differences in how adiposity and nutrients interact with the tumor environment,” Huffman said. “In addition, the study emphasizes the need to promote strategies that reduce visceral fat in abdominally obese individuals.”

                Huffman noted that more studies are needed to definitively uncover the mechanisms behind the causality between visceral fat and intestinal cancer, to determine how abdominal obesity and nutrient availability act independently during the stages of tumor promotion and progression, and to determine how other strategies to promote weight loss, such as bariatric surgery, affect cancer risk.

                • Intestinal Cancer
                • visceral fat
                • colon cancer
                • fat
                • cancer
                  ]]>
                  west@hotmail.com (Jeff Behar) Cancer Wed, 08 May 2013 00:00:00 -0700
                  Marriage May Not Improve your Health Says Health Experts http://www.mybesthealthportal.net/health/latest-health-and-medicine-studies/marriage-may-not-improve-your-health-says-health-experts.html http://www.mybesthealthportal.net/health/latest-health-and-medicine-studies/marriage-may-not-improve-your-health-says-health-experts.html

                  marraigeMarriage may not always be as beneficial to health as experts have led us to believe, according to a new study and the health benefits of marriage.

                  Researchers made two discoveries that explain why: First, marriage provides less protection against mortality as health deteriorates, even though it does seem to benefit those who are in excellent health. Secondly, married people tend to overestimate how healthy they are, compared to others.

                  “We believe marriage is still good for the health of some people, but it is not equally protective for everyone,” said Hui Zheng, the lead author of the study and an assistant professor of sociology at Ohio State University. “For those who are already in poor health, marriage doesn’t seem to provide any extra benefits.”

                  The results generally held true for both men and women. They were also similar for all types of unmarried people, including divorced, widowed, and never married. The researchers also included separated people in the unmarried category.

                  Zheng conducted the study with Patricia Thomas, a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Texas at Austin’s Population Research Center. Their results appear in the March issue of the Journal of Health and Social Behavior (JHSB).

                  The researchers used data on about 789,000 people who participated in the National Health Interview Survey from 1986 to 2004. In this survey, participants rated their own health on a five-point scale (excellent, very good, good, fair, poor). Zheng and Thomas then used follow-up data to identify the nearly 24,100 people who died between 1986 and 2006.

                  The self-rated health measure used in the JHSB study has been found to be one of the best predictors of whether a person will die in both the short and long term—even better than doctor diagnosis in some cases, Zheng said.

                  The researchers used a statistical model to determine how self-rated health, marriage status, and other factors related to mortality risk over a three-year period.

                  Overall, the researchers confirmed the volumes of previous research that has found that, overall, being unmarried—including never married, divorced, widowed, and separated—significantly increases the risk of death within three years. For example, a never-married person who lists his health as “excellent” is two times more likely to die within three years than a similar married person in excellent health.

                  But their new finding is that as self-rated health declines (from excellent down to poor), the mortality advantage for married people diminishes.

                  For example, for never-married people, each unit decline in health (e.g., from fair to poor) decreases the risk of death compared to married people by 12 percent. When people rate their health as “poor,” there is essentially no difference in mortality risks between married and unmarried people.

                  “These results suggest that marriage may be important for the prevention of disease, but not as helpful once people become seriously ill,” Zheng said. “That’s why we see a protective effect of marriage when people are in excellent health, but not when they are in poor health.”

                  The researchers confirmed that marriage offers diminishing protection against mortality at poorer levels of health by using another, more objective measure of health. They compared married and unmarried people’s responses to questions about how well they could handle routine care activities such as eating and bathing, as well as activities that promote independent living, such as driving and cooking.

                  The results showed that married and unmarried people have similar mortality rates when they have worse health as measured by limitations on their ability to perform these types of activities.

                  But the diminishing protection of marriage as health declines is only part of the explanation about why marriage may not guard health as much as assumed. The other explanation uncovered by the study is that married people overestimate how healthy they are.

                  “The married don’t seem to report their health as being poor until they’ve already developed much more severe health problems,” Zheng said. “They have a different threshold for what they consider to be bad health compared to unmarried people.”

                  That means that once a married person does rate his health as “poor,” he may be sicker than a similar single person who also lists his health as poor.

                  The reason may have to do with the social support married people receive from their spouses.

                  “Even when married people do get sick, the impact on their life may be less because of the support they receive from their husband or wife,” Zheng said. “They don’t rate their health as low as do unmarried people, because their spouse helps them cope.”

                  These results shouldn’t be used to cast doubt on the validity of self-rated health measures, Zheng said. In general, self-rated health is still very useful and accurate in predicting mortality. However, the results here show researchers should use such measures cautiously when comparing people of different marital statuses.

                  People should also be clear about what marriage can and cannot do when it comes to health. “Marriage is helpful in persuading people to adopt a healthy lifestyle that can lead to a longer life,” Zheng said. “But it is not as useful in helping people recover from a serious illness.”

                  The research was supported in part by the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Health and Child Development.

                  • marraige
                  • health benefits
                    ]]>
                    west@hotmail.com (Jeff Behar) Latest Health and Medicine Studies Wed, 22 Jan 2014 00:00:00 -0800
                    Birth Order Linked to Higher Risk for Diabetes and Metabolic Disorders http://www.mybesthealthportal.net/health/latest-health-and-medicine-studies/birth-order-linked-to-higher-risk-for-diabetes-and-metabolic-disorders.html http://www.mybesthealthportal.net/health/latest-health-and-medicine-studies/birth-order-linked-to-higher-risk-for-diabetes-and-metabolic-disorders.html

                    birth order of siblingsA recent study accepted for publication in The Endocrine Society’s Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism (JCEM). finds reduced insulin effectiveness, higher blood pressure and an increased risk for diabetes in first-born children.

                    Long a source of sibling rivalry, birth order may raise the risk of first-born children developing diabetes or high blood pressure, according to this new study appearring in the March 2013 issue of JCEM.

                    First-born children have greater difficulty absorbing sugars into the body and have higher daytime blood pressure than children who have older siblings, according to the study conducted at the University of Auckland’s Liggins Institute in New Zealand. The study was the first to document a 21 percent drop in insulin sensitivity among first-born children.

                    “Although birth order alone is not a predictor of metabolic or cardiovascular disease, being the first-born child in a family can contribute to a person’s overall risk,” said Wayne Cutfield, MBChB, DCH, FRACP, of the University of Auckland.

                    With family size shrinking in many countries, a larger proportion of the population is made up of first-born children who could develop conditions like type 2 diabetes, coronary artery disease, stroke and hypertension. The research findings may have significant public health implications for nations like China, where the one-child policy has led to a greater segment of the population being composed of first-born children.

                    The study measured fasting lipid and hormonal profiles, height, weight and body composition in 85 healthy children between the ages of 4 and 11. The 32 first-born children who participated in the study had a 21 percent reduction in insulin sensitivity and a 4 mmHg increase in blood pressure.

                    Born First Not all Bad

                    The good news for oldest and only children? The study found they tended to be taller and slimmer than their later-born counterparts, even after the height and body mass index of their parents was taken into account.

                    The metabolic differences in younger siblings might be caused by physical changes in the mother’s uterus during her first pregnancy. As a result of the changes, nutrient flow to the fetus tends to increase during subsequent pregnancies.

                    For this study, researchers focused on children because puberty and adult lifestyle can affect insulin sensitivity.

                    “Our results indicate first-born children have these risk factors, but more research is needed to determine how that translates into adult cases of diabetes, hypertension and other conditions,” Cutfield said.

                    Reference:  “First-born Children Have Reduced Insulin Sensitivity And Higher Daytime Blood Pressure Compared To Later-born Children,” Ma. 2013. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism (JCEM).

                    • firstborn children
                    • Metabolic Disorder risk
                    • diabetes risk
                    • Birth Order
                    • Insulin Sensitivity
                    • diabetes
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                      west@hotmail.com (Jeff Behar) Latest Health and Medicine Studies Sun, 18 Aug 2013 00:00:00 -0700