April 3, 2011 |
Getting a good grip on your health may mean … getting a good grip. The force you can muster when squeezing an object or a weight doesn't only reveal how strong your hand and arm are. It can be a measure of overall muscle function and — according to one recent study — even portend how long you're likely to live. That's not as nutty as it seems, says Richard Bohannon, a professor of physical therapy at the University of Connecticut. "Grip strength reflects your overall muscle status and a general sense of how much muscle mass you have" he says.
March 26, 2013 |
People who are socially isolated are more likely to die prematurely, regardless of their underlying health issues, according to a study of the elderly British population. The findings, published online Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, showed that when mental and physical health conditions were factored out, the lack of social contact continued to lead to early death among 6,500 men and women tracked over a seven-year period. "They're dying of the usual causes, but isolation has a strong influence," said study author Andrew Steptoe, an epidemiologist at University College London.
September 12, 2013 |
Consider this next time you're sitting in traffic on the freeway: You're in a zone where air pollution can be five to 10 times higher than in surrounding areas. Even inside your vehicle, you're probably breathing in pollutants through the windows or the air vents. After an hourlong commute, you've likely doubled your daily exposure to the harmful particles in vehicle exhaust. A new study says the single best thing you can do to protect yourself is roll up the windows and set your vehicle's ventilation system to 'recirculate.' Using that setting -- typically a button that shows a car with an arrow inside -- can cut pollution concentrations inside a typical car to 20% of on-road levels, scientists found.
May 12, 2011 |
By quizzing small children about the first events they remember — a cousin misbehaving, a trip to a grocery store, a mother's bribe of red and green licorice — researchers have discovered that the earliest memories of children shift as they get older, and don't solidify into the first memories carried throughout life until about age 10. The research, published Wednesday in the journal Child Development, could help psychologists better understand...
October 23, 2013 |
Exposure to the pesticide DDT could be playing a role in high rates of obesity three generations later, a new study says. Scientists injected pregnant rats with DDT and found no change in their levels of obesity or their offspring. But by the third generation, more than half of the rats (think of them as the great-grandchildren) showed dramatically higher levels of fat and weight gain, even though they were never exposed to the pesticide themselves. "Here is an ancestral exposure in your great-grandmother, which is passed on to you and you're going to pass on to your grandchildren," said Michael Skinner, a professor of biological sciences at Washington State University who led the research published in the journal BMC Medicine.
September 24, 2012 |
Want to live to 100? A new study suggests that, for men, your testicles might be holding you back. Korean eunuchs - men who had their testicles removed - outlived their contemporaries by as many as 14 to 19 years, suggesting that male sex hormones somehow act to shorten the male human lifespan, according to a new historical study of records spanning from the 14th century through the early 19th century. The finding, reported Monday in the journal Current Biology, argues for something called the "disposable soma theory.” The idea is that since animals have limited access to energy, there is a natural trade-off between reproduction and the maintenance of the body's cells.