inflammation

  1. Diabetes ups dementia risk

    If you thought diabetes was bad before, wait 'til you see what it's been connected to now...

    Alzheimer's disease.

    I'm not talking about a small risk, either. Turns out that diabetics have DOUBLE the risk of Alzheimer's disease.

    (That is... if they live long enough to face any age-related cognitive decline in the first place.)

    The researchers who uncovered this connection also found that diabetics had a 75 percent boost in the odds of any kind of dementia at all.

    Think you're safe because you don't quite have diabetes yet? Think again: Pre-diabetics also faced a higher risk of dementia, along with anyone who was even showing early signs -- like high blood sugar levels two hours after a meal.

    The researchers say their study doesn't show why diabetes increases the risk of dementia -- but it's pretty obvious to me.

    Obesity, a major risk factor for diabetes, also happens to be a risk factor for dementia -- especially if you put those pounds on in mid-life (or earlier) and spend the next few decades dragging them around everywhere. (Read more here.)

    Diabetics also have high levels of overall inflammation -- another risk factor for dementia.

    For the icing on the cake, one of the key drugs used by millions of diabetics -- metformin -- can rob the brain of essential vitamin B12. And as I just told you, low levels of this nutrient can shrink the brain, short-circuit your memory and bring on dementia.

    Bottom line here: If you want to save your brain, start with your belly.

  2. Eat your way to a smaller brain

    Your belly might be growing... but your brain is shrinking -- and the more you eat, the smaller it gets.

    In a frightening study from the New York University School of Medicine, researchers used MRI images to compare the brains of 44 obese people to those of 19 slimjims who were the same age and had the same background.

    Those who were obese had less volume in the regions of the brain associated with eating, appetite, and reward. They had smaller orbitofrontal cortices, which control impulse behavior, and more water in the crucial amygdala region.

    They also had higher levels of inflammation than the normal-sized volunteers.

    In case you're wondering, none of this is good. Put it all together, and here's what it means: When you overeat, you literally damage your brain to the point where it no longer knows how much to eat or when to stop.

    The researchers behind the study warn people to eat more slowly and avoid high-fat food, which is missing the point completely.

    It's not how fast or slow you eat, but what you eat -- and the natural fats in fresh meat and fatty fish are absolutely essential to the brain and overall mental health, and will keep you slim and trim if you pass on the carbs.

    And I don't care how slowly you eat sugar -- it will give you a great, big belly and a tiny, rotten brain.

  3. The right fats at the right time

    Do as I say, not as I do -- that's the message from a new study that finds omega-3 fatty acids can slash anxiety and reduce inflammation. The researchers behind it say they won't recommend omega-3 supplements for everyone despite their results... but admit they're taking the things themselves.
  4. New vitamin D research proves what I've been saying for years

    A recent study in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology gives even more support to what I've been telling you for some time: that not getting enough vitamin D can be bad for your heart.
  5. Researchers use good science to make a bad recommendation

    A study finally proves that inflammation is a predictor of heart disease. But it also finds that using statin-based drugs to treat inflammation could cut the risk of heart attack, stroke, and heart disease in half.
  6. Childhood ear infections are misdiagnosed and over treated

    The latest news is about the growing misdiagnosis and over-treatment of a common childhood malady-the ear infection.
  7. Untested OTC cold meds send kids to the ER

    The Centers for Disease Control just released a study that cough and cold medicines cause nearly 7,000 children a year to hospital emergency rooms.

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