World of Medicine
Interrupted Sleep May Increase Risk for Alzheimer’s
If you keep waking up in the middle of the night, your brain may be in trouble. Three recent studies have shown that breathing disorders that interrupt sleep are linked to higher levels of the beta-amyloid protein, which is associated with Alzheimer’s. This was true both for people who have been diagnosed with mild cognitive impairment and for those with no symptoms. It’s not clear yet if sleep disruptions actually cause dementia, but addressing them will help your brain work better in any case. If you’re tired all the time, get tested by a sleep specialist.
Moderate Drinking May Reduce Diabetes Risk
While alcohol may raise your blood sugar levels, a new study of more than 70,000 healthy adults found that men who knocked back an average of 14 drinks per week reduced their risk of developing diabetes by 43 percent; women who enjoyed an average of 9 drinks per week, by 58 percent. What they drank also mattered. Choosing wine significantly reduced risk for both men and women. Beer also proved helpful for men. But women who drank spirits increased their diabetes risk by 83 percent.
Just One Workout Boosts Women’s Body Image
Need a pick-me-up? In a new study, women who completed a 30-minute workout felt stronger and thinner, and the feel-good buzz lasted for at least 20 minutes.
Yes, participants in the study were all regular gym goers. But what’s surprising is that they got this mental boost after just one short, discrete period of exercising. The study’s author believes that the quick psychological payoff could help women feel better about their bodies and embrace the power of exercise even in small amounts.
Mildly Obese More Likely to Survive Heart Attack Raw Dairy a Major Cause of Food Poisoning
Raw milk is all the rage, with some nutritionists claiming that it’s easier to digest than the pasteurized variety. But the Food and Drug Administration actually prohibits the interstate sale of raw milk for human consumption, and here’s one good reason: According to a new study that analyzed outbreaks of food poisoning from 2009 to 2014, unpasteurized milk—along with cheese made from it—was responsible for 96 percent of all dairycaused foodborne illnesses. That was 840 times the number of outbreaks caused by pasteurized products. New research published in the European Heart Journal: Quality of Care & Clinical Outcomes has found that in the three years following a heart attack, mildly obese patients— those with a body mass index (BMI) of 30 to 34.9—were 30 percent more likely to spend less time in the hospital and survive than patients at a normal weight (with a BMI between 18.5 and 24.9). What’s more, patients of normal weight fared as poorly as those who were extremely obese (with a BMI of 40 or higher). But don’t jump to the wrong conclusion. The study’s author suspects that the normal-weight patients were older and more likely to smoke than the heavier ones. “This does not suggest,” the study cautions, “that heart attack patients should try to gain weight if they are of normal weight.”
Cows and HIV Protection
A study published in Nature showed that the immune systems of cows were able to adapt and combat HIV at an unprecedented rate. Cows neutralize 20 percent of the virus strains at 42 days and 96 percent at 381 days. “In humans,” one of the study authors noted, “it takes more than five years to develop the antibodies we’re talking about.” Cow antibodies are naturally long and loopy in structure, which turns out to be similar to antibodies that can block infection. Researchers hope this is the first step toward developing an effective vaccine for HIV infection and/or AIDS.