Posts Tagged ‘Health’


Another good reason to lose weight


Thursday, December 5th, 2013

Overweight drivers listen up: Research shows fat people are propelled further forward during a collision because of their additional soft tissue, which prevents a seat-belt from tightening immediately against the pelvis.

Scientists now believe car design may have to change to protect overweight drivers. Analysis of US collision data found those who were most overweight - in the World Health Organization obesity category III - were 80% more likely to die in an accident than drivers of a healthy weight.

So does that mean an end to Maccy D’s drive-throughs then? ;-(

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School makes you tall!


Monday, August 5th, 2013

Researchers from the universities of Southern California, Harvard, and Beijing say it is the first time it has been shown that choices we make later in life, rather than in early childhood, can influence our height. Using data from a survey of 17,708 adults beginning at age 45, the researchers showed a number of new influences - including education - which determined how much we shrank. They showed that regardless of your maximum height, the loss of height over time is also an important indicator for other health issues as we age.

The study found that those who had lost more height were also much more likely to perform poorly on standard tests of cognitive health, such as short-term memory, ability to perform basic arithmetic and awareness of the date.

Urban dwellers had much less height loss than those in rural areas, and having completed primary school - rather than being illiterate - is associated with 0.9 cm less height shrinkage in men.

Completing high school meant a further 1 cm less in shrinkage.

For women, having completed primary school was the difference in 0.6 cm of shrinkage, compared to an average overall height decrease of 3.8 cm.

So,  mothers might have been better telling their kids to finish their homework as well as their greens to grow big and strong!

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George Michael – speaking West Country


Friday, March 8th, 2013

Not a particularly new story in the Telegraph but one that fascinates. When George Michael awoke from his coma he spoke with a West Country accent even though he’s from London!

Apparently it’s not that uncommon in coma victims – awaking from comas speaking another language they learnt at school, etc., is actually a form of brain damage and affects a surprising amount of people.

However, George came back to his normal voice within a few days. He blames it on his obsessive viewing of the comedy show ‘Nighty Night’, set in Cornwall.

He revealed: “The first question the doctors asked me was, ‘Do you know who you are?’ And apparently the first thing I said was, ‘Oi’m the King of the World!’ Apparently that’s true, though I didn’t know it for months afterwards.”

“I scared everyone when I woke up because I basically did two days’ worth of stand-up comedy based on ‘Nighty Night’ in this bizarre West Country accent.”

And now gorgeous George is back on the stage and doing what he does best – wham!

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Powernaps: the science to tell your boss!


Thursday, July 5th, 2012

Great article in the BBC describing how air traffic controllers in the US have been advised to nap for 26 minutes!

Referring to a 1995 study from Nasa, which he co-authored, National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) member and fatigue expert Mark Rosekind said that a 26-minute nap would improve performance by 34% and alertness by 54%.

Some very unscientific research in at “home” (okay, read office) is that any longer than 20 minutes and you risk feeling groggy when you wake up. The article suggests that a coffee and a 15-minute nap – by which time the caffeine has kicked in –  is the optimum.

So next time you are asleep on the keyboard remember the facts!

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Go go, great grandmother!


Tuesday, April 24th, 2012

Unbelievable! A great grandmother from Utah has soared into the record books by paragliding in celebrations of her 101st birthday. With four generations of her family looking on, she looped and spun her way across the sky. Not quite the usual hobby you would associate with a pensioner!

The Telegraph quotes her remarking, “I feel very humble in setting a new Guinness World Record. My desire is for the elderly to keep on going, do things as long as you are physically able. Be positive,” she said in comments cited by Guinness. “When a person is busy, the hurts seem to ease up. If you are able and even older than I, then I’m happy for people to attempt to break my record. I promise the experience will be well worth it!”

Asked how she felt just after landing gently back on the ground, she told local TV station KSL 5: “How was it? I’m ready to go again!”

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Treating drug abuse with…drug abuse?


Thursday, April 12th, 2012

Interesting findings from studies carried out in the 1960s show that a single dose of LSD may be enough to support alcoholics to give up drink entirely.

BBC Health News reports that data from the experiments, which involved six trials and over 500 patients, demonstrated a “significant beneficial effect” on alcoholism lasting for a few months after the treatment.

The powerful hallucinogen has been banned in the UK since 1966, just 23 years after it was first discovered. It is a long-acting drug that affects the levels of serotonin in the brain, which is a massive factor in behaviour, mood and perception.

And the results are pretty impressive – 59% of those given a single dose of LSD, between 210-800mg, demonstrated reduced levels of alcohol abuse compared with a 38% change in those undergoing alternative treatments.

While it would seem odd that this should be the case, Professor David Nutt, the former drug adviser for the UK Government, who was in fact sacked for his views on relaxing prohibitive measures on illegal drugs for research purposes, suggests that the results corroborate the notion that alcohol dependency needs to be cured by altering one’s outlook on life.

The analysis was carried out by the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) and can be read about in the Journal of Psychopharmacology.

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Movember 2011


Tuesday, November 29th, 2011

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Nanotechnology - a little lesson in history


Thursday, October 20th, 2011

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Keeping fit staves off colds


Thursday, October 13th, 2011

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Let there be light - chips allowing the blind to see


Tuesday, October 11th, 2011

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