Review Category : Health

Men with High Levels of Testosterone Are Spicy Food Lovers

iStock/Thinkstock(GRENOBLE, France) — A manly man likes spicy foods, true or false?

While it seems a bit preposterous, researchers at France’s University of Grenoble say that a man’s liking of hot and spicy grub may actually prove that he has higher levels of testosterone than guys who regularly pass on fiery foods.

The proof, as it were, was in the mashed potatoes or rather, what the researchers offered participants to put on their potatoes.

Some of the 114 men in the study, ages 18 to 44, opted for spicy pepper sauce while others chose table salt. Upon measuring their saliva, the researchers discovered that men with more testosterone were the generally the ones who favored the spicy sauce.

In one way, it appeared to make sense since the hormone is often associated with risk-taking and what could be more risky than food that burns your mouth?

However, the researchers weren’t ready to jump to the conclusion that spicy food also causes men’s testosterone levels to spike even though it seemed to happen when they conducted tests on rats.

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Most Youngsters Don’t Eat Three Meals Daily

iStock/Thinkstock(JONESUU, Finland) — Breakfast lunch dinner. Breakfast lunch dinner. Breakfast lunch dinner.

By now, you know the drill that three meals a day are important for optimum health, especially when it comes to children. But since we don’t live in a perfect world, many youngsters aren’t getting three squares daily.

That’s the finding of University of Eastern Finland PhD candidate Aino-Maija Eloranta who studied the eating habits of more than 500 children between the ages of six and eight.

Only 45 percent of the boys and a third of the girls ate breakfast, lunch and dinner daily and the meal that they tended to skip the most was dinner, considered the one with the most calories and nutrients.

The study also involved measuring the youngsters’ body mass index, waist circumference, blood pressure and other important data. As it turns out, those children who ate three meals had smaller waists and were far less prone to being overweight than others who didn’t eat major meals.

However, regardless of how many meals they consumed, snacks were regularly consumed by all children, providing more than 40 percent of their daily calories in some cases.

Eloranta doesn’t completely disparage snacks although she worries that they are often high in sugar and low in important stuff like fiber.

In general, she says that parents should try to feed their kids three meals daily, which can help them to avoid obesity and heart problems later in life.

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Warlike Metaphors Make the Cancer Fight Harder

iStock/Thinkstock(ANN ARBOR, Mich.) — Perhaps we’ve been going about the war on cancer all wrong.

That’s the finding of University of Michigan researcher David Hauser, who says that metaphors used when describing people’s efforts to resist the disease, such as “fight” and “battle,” can detract from cancer-prevention behaviors.

In one experiment, Hauser had more than 300 participants read one of two passage about colorectal cancer. One constantly referred to this cancer as an “enemy” while the other contained no such metaphors.

Essentially, people who read the passage with more belligerent language seemed less likely to choose preventative measures to reduce their risk of contracting colorectal cancer such as limiting red meat, quitting smoking and other healthful advice.

While trying to boost people’s resolve in dealing with cancer, these warlike metaphors, which are pervasive in science journalism, inadvertently have “unfortunate side-effects,” according to Hauser.

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Clot Removal Linked to Improved Odds of Limiting Disability in Stroke Victims

Jochen Sands/Digital Vision/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — A new study shows that removing the blood clot that causes a stroke may improve odds of limiting disability caused by that stroke.

The study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, notes that while intravenous alteplase — used to break down blood clots — within 4.5 hours of the onset of stroke symptoms is the only therapy with proof of efficacy, intraarterial therapy — including the retrieval of the clot — may be more effective at preventing disability.

Researchers at 16 facilities in the Netherlands looked at 500 participants whose average age was 65 years old with acute ischemic stroke. Approximately 90 percent were treated with clot-dissolving drugs, and half of the participants were also treated using a clot-removing device. Each patient was treated within six hours of the start of their symptoms.

Three months after treatment, nearly 33 percent of those given both the clot-busting drug and the clot-removing devices were functionally independent. Only about 19 percent of those treated only with the clot-busting drug met that same standard.

Researchers also said that there was no significant difference in the mortality rate of patients studied whether they received the clot-dissolving medication and had the clot removed, or only received the medication.

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Study: Many Patients Don’t Know How to Use Inhalers, Epi-Pens Properly

Stockbyte/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — A new study found that many patients with inhalers or epi-pens do not use them correctly.

According to the study, published in the journal Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, researchers at the University of Texas looked at a small sampling of patients and found that 84 percent of those with severe food and medication allergies are unable to use their epinephrine injector properly. They also determined that 93 percent of study participants were unable to use their asthma inhaler properly.

Researchers say that younger patients were more likely to use their device properly when compared to older patients, and men were more likely than women to use the devices correctly.

A larger study would be necessary to verify the percentages, but the researchers call the failure of many patients to properly use these devices problematic. They did note, however, that not all of the errors made in the study would have put a patient’s life at risk.

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Study: Many Patients Don’t Know How to Use Inhalers, Epi-Pens Properly

Stockbyte/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — A new study found that many patients with inhalers or epi-pens do not use them correctly.

According to the study, published in the journal Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, researchers at the University of Texas looked at a small sampling of patients and found that 84 percent of those with severe food and medication allergies are unable to use their epinephrine injector properly. They also determined that 93 percent of study participants were unable to use their asthma inhaler properly.

Researchers say that younger patients were more likely to use their device properly when compared to older patients, and men were more likely than women to use the devices correctly.

A larger study would be necessary to verify the percentages, but the researchers call the failure of many patients to properly use these devices problematic. They did note, however, that not all of the errors made in the study would have put a patient’s life at risk.

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Study: Many Patients Don’t Know How to Use Inhalers, Epi-Pens Properly

Stockbyte/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — A new study found that many patients with inhalers or epi-pens do not use them correctly.

According to the study, published in the journal Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, researchers at the University of Texas looked at a small sampling of patients and found that 84 percent of those with severe food and medication allergies are unable to use their epinephrine injector properly. They also determined that 93 percent of study participants were unable to use their asthma inhaler properly.

Researchers say that younger patients were more likely to use their device properly when compared to older patients, and men were more likely than women to use the devices correctly.

A larger study would be necessary to verify the percentages, but the researchers call the failure of many patients to properly use these devices problematic. They did note, however, that not all of the errors made in the study would have put a patient’s life at risk.

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Clot Removal Linked to Improved Odds of Limiting Disability in Stroke Victims

Jochen Sands/Digital Vision/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — A new study shows that removing the blood clot that causes a stroke may improve odds of limiting disability caused by that stroke.

The study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, notes that while intravenous alteplase — used to break down blood clots — within 4.5 hours of the onset of stroke symptoms is the only therapy with proof of efficacy, intraarterial therapy — including the retrieval of the clot — may be more effective at preventing disability.

Researchers at 16 facilities in the Netherlands looked at 500 participants whose average age was 65 years old with acute ischemic stroke. Approximately 90 percent were treated with clot-dissolving drugs, and half of the participants were also treated using a clot-removing device. Each patient was treated within six hours of the start of their symptoms.

Three months after treatment, nearly 33 percent of those given both the clot-busting drug and the clot-removing devices were functionally independent. Only about 19 percent of those treated only with the clot-busting drug met that same standard.

Researchers also said that there was no significant difference in the mortality rate of patients studied whether they received the clot-dissolving medication and had the clot removed, or only received the medication.

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Despite Risks, Older Adults More Likely to Use Benzodiaepines for Help Sleeping

Thomas Northcut/Digital Vision/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Older adults are more likely to use benzodiazepines for help sleeping, a new study says, which could put them at risk of injury.

According to a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association Psychiatry, older adults are more likely to use benzodiazepines than young adults. While 5.2 percent of Americans aged 18 to 80 use the drugs, such as Xanax, Valium and Ativan, the percentage increased along with age. Among adults aged 18 to 35, just 2.6 percent used the drugs, while 8.7 percent between 65 and 80 years old used benzodiazepines.

Researchers also say that the proportion of long-term use of the drugs increased with age. Previous research suggested that older adults receiving the drugs may lead to increased risk of falls, fractures and motor vehicle crashes.

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Pup Tries Out New 3-D-Printed Paws

Stephanie Portanova/Facebook(NEW YORK) — One lucky dog is getting his stride back after being fitted with custom 3-D printed paws and legs.

Derby, a mutt believed to be mostly husky, was born without fully formed front legs. Instead, the dog had small “elbows” that left him pitched forwards as he tried to run and play with other dogs.

“He was scooting around on these nubs and chest,” said Melissa Hannon, who rescued Derby through her organization, Peace and Paws.

After taking in Derby from his original owners in Alabama, Hannon placed the pup with a foster owner, Tara Anderson, a director of product management at a company focused on developing 3-D products called 3-D systems.

From the first day that Hannon matched Derby with Anderson, she hoped they could figure out a way to get Derby fully on his feet.

“I think it was a vision,” Hannon said of the plan to create 3-D printed prosthetic legs for Derby. “No one knew if it would work or if it would take.”

As Anderson cared for Derby, she also started to work with people at her company to design prosthetics for Derby.

“We start him off very low so it wouldn’t be too drastic,” Anderson said of Derby’s first model on the 3D Systems website.

This summer, Derby was matched with his permanent owners, Sherry and Dom Portanova in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The couple said Derby could get around using a wheeled cart, but because it replaced his front legs it was hard for him to move around or interact with other dogs.

When Derby was given his first prosthetic caps, they were little more than “caps” to cover and protect his “elbows” as he scooted around.

“He took to those immediately,” Sherry Portanova told ABC News. “They have cushion inside. That meant he could go run on driveway and concrete.”

Anderson kept working with engineers at 3D Systems to fine tune the prosthetic limbs. One model looked like “peg legs” according to Portanova, and didn’t quite work when Derby tried to run around.

However the next model, Anderson designed — a long looping prosthetic — seemed to be just right for the energetic Derby.

As soon as Derby tried them on, Portanova said the dog just took off.

“The first time he was put on them and he took off running, he was so happy,” she said in a video for 3D Systems. “I was absolutely amazed at how well he did.”

Now, the dog runs every day with the couple, Portanova told ABC News. She hopes Derby’s story encourages owners to adopt disabled pets.

“He’s such a good dog and he lives a full life,” she said. “He’s very special. Everybody who sees him just loves him.”

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