Review Category : Health

The Secret to Being Happier: Quitting Facebook for 99 Days?

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — A campaign called “99 Days of Freedom” is daring Facebook users to take a summer detox from the addictive social network.

However, not everyone has what it takes to go three months without logging on to check their newsfeed for friends’ selfies, relationship updates and vacation snaps.

The campaign, which launched earlier this week, has so far encouraged just more than 2,800 of Facebook’s one billion active users to take a vow of abstinence.

The initiative comes as a response to Facebook’s “mood experiment” on 700,000 users, said Merijn Straathof, the art director at Just, the Netherlands-based creative agency behind the “99 Days of Freedom” idea.

“Facebook is an incredible platform, we’re all fiercely loyal users and we believe that there’s a lot to love about the service,” he said. “But we we also feel that there are obvious emotional benefits to moderation.”

“Our prediction is that the experiment will yield a lot of positive personal experiences and, 99 days from now, we’ll know whether that theory has legs,” he added.

If the average user spends 17 minutes per day on Facebook and completes the challenge, they will have an extra “28 hours of freedom” to pursue other activities, Straathof said.

While it’s still early in the challenge, Straathof said participants have reported a “rough” day one, while others have said they’re much happier spending the extra time reading or going outside.

“Day 1 is the roughest. I am always looking for my app when I deleted it. I feel empowered to keep doing this though. I know I can stay strong!” a user named Henderson Cunningham wrote.

A man named Kurt wrote he was using his Facebook hiatus as motivation to work out more. “I’m heading back to the gym and getting more exercise with my ‘re-captured’ time,” he wrote.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Read More →

The Secret to Being Happier: Quitting Facebook for 99 Days?

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — A campaign called “99 Days of Freedom” is daring Facebook users to take a summer detox from the addictive social network.

However, not everyone has what it takes to go three months without logging on to check their newsfeed for friends’ selfies, relationship updates and vacation snaps.

The campaign, which launched earlier this week, has so far encouraged just more than 2,800 of Facebook’s one billion active users to take a vow of abstinence.

The initiative comes as a response to Facebook’s “mood experiment” on 700,000 users, said Merijn Straathof, the art director at Just, the Netherlands-based creative agency behind the “99 Days of Freedom” idea.

“Facebook is an incredible platform, we’re all fiercely loyal users and we believe that there’s a lot to love about the service,” he said. “But we we also feel that there are obvious emotional benefits to moderation.”

“Our prediction is that the experiment will yield a lot of positive personal experiences and, 99 days from now, we’ll know whether that theory has legs,” he added.

If the average user spends 17 minutes per day on Facebook and completes the challenge, they will have an extra “28 hours of freedom” to pursue other activities, Straathof said.

While it’s still early in the challenge, Straathof said participants have reported a “rough” day one, while others have said they’re much happier spending the extra time reading or going outside.

“Day 1 is the roughest. I am always looking for my app when I deleted it. I feel empowered to keep doing this though. I know I can stay strong!” a user named Henderson Cunningham wrote.

A man named Kurt wrote he was using his Facebook hiatus as motivation to work out more. “I’m heading back to the gym and getting more exercise with my ‘re-captured’ time,” he wrote.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Read More →

New Concern About Testing Procedures for ADHD Medications

iStock/Thinkstock(BOSTON) — A new study is raising concern that medications being used to treat children with ADHD may not have gone through the rigorous testing that’s performed on other drugs.

Eleven percent of children in the U.S. between the ages of four and 17 — some 6.4 million children in all — have been diagnosed with ADHD, according to the Centers for Disease Control, and many of them receive drugs to help them manage the condition.

In a study published in the journal PLOS ONE, researchers at Boston Children’s Hospital reviewed clinical trials on all 20 ADHD medications available for use in the U.S. and found that only 32 trials were done before the medications were approved.

The researchers found that 11 of the drugs were approved after clinical trials that involved an average of just 75 people.

The study also found the time span between drug trial and approval was just four weeks. Only three of the drugs were assessed in long-term safety trials.

The authors say clinical trials for ADHD medications are designed to prove short-term efficacy only, not long-term safety and efficacy.

The authors also note that while some studies conducted after the drugs are approved help provide additional data, more needs to be done to ensure proper trials are conducted.

Medical observers note that when it comes to testing of drugs for use in non-life-threatening conditions, commonly accepted guidelines state 300 to 600 patients should be treated for at least six months, and at least 100 patients should be exposed to a drug for 12 months before it is approved.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Read More →

North Dakota Ranks First in Beer Consumption

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Congratulations, North Dakota. You lead the nation in beer consumption.

According to a study from Beer Marketer’s Insights, a brewing industry trade publisher, North Dakota residents consumed 43.3 gallons of beer per drinking-age adult in 2013, the most of any state.

In comparison, folks in Utah consumed the least amount of beer in the U.S., just 19.6 gallons per legal-age adult.

Overall, beer consumption in the U.S. dropped slightly from 28.3 gallons per drinking-age adult in 2012 to 27.6 gallons last year.

Here are the top five states for beer consumption:

  1. North Dakota, per capita consumption: 43.3 gallons
  2. New Hampshire, per capita consumption: 42.2 gallons
  3. Montana, per capita consumption: 40.5 gallons
  4. South Dakota, per capita consumption: 38.1 gallons
  5. Vermont, per capita consumption: 35.9 gallons

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Read More →

Gender Bias in Heart Transplants?

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Today’s “Men versus Women” story comes from the world of medicine.

A new study indicates women in the U.S. have a higher chance of dying while awaiting a heart transplant than men, and part of the reason may be unfairness in the heart allocation system.

The study published in the journal JACC: Heart Failure looked at more than 28,000 adults on the waiting list for donor hearts from 2000-2010, and ranked the patients according to their health when they were added to the list.

Patients were ranked in three categories: 1A for most urgent in need of a transplant; 1B for those slightly more stable; and Class 2 for the most healthy.

The study found that women ranked 1A had worse chances of survival compared to men because they were less likely to receive a heart transplant.

Why? The authors believe women may be less likely than men to be “bridged” with a ventricular assist device known as a VAD machine or an artificial heart until a transplant was available. The authors note that there was no information available to indicate why this is the case.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Read More →

Researchers Link Climbing Obesity Rate to Lack of Exercise

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(LOS ANGELES) — Researchers at the Stanford University Medical Center say that the surge in the American obesity rate is linked to a lack of exercise, not a dramatic change in the overall number of calories consumed.

The study was conducted using data from national health surveys from 1988 through 2010, and led researchers to link “huge increases in both obesity and inactivity.” Data was culled from 17,430 survey participants between 1988 and 1994 and 5,000 each year between 1995 and 2010. Each participant was asked to record the frequency, duration and intensity of their exercise over the last month.

Researchers defined “ideal” exercise as over 150 minutes per week of moderate exercise or over 75 minutes per week of vigorous exercise.

The study only found a link between lack of activity and obesity, not a causation.

In 1988, just 19 percent of women and 11 percent of men reported no physical activity — figures that climbed to 52 percent and 43 percent respectively by 2010. During that same time, obesity rates climbed from 25 percent among women and 20 percent in men to 35 percent in both women and men.

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Read More →

Delaware Dad Delivers Early Bundle of Joy on Busy Highway

Creatas/Thinkstock(PHILADELPHIA) — A Delaware woman is recovering after her newborn daughter arrived slightly earlier than expected.

Joe and Melissa Alan were on their way to the hospital with Melissa in labor, when the expectant mom realized they weren’t going to make it to the birthing center.

“It hit fast, it came fast and we did not have any time to get up there,” Melissa Alan told ABC News affiliate WPVI-TV in Philadelphia.

The couple was attempting an hour drive from their home to their planned birthing center but their daughter had other plans.

“Forty minutes down the road I told him to stop. We had to deliver there,” Melissa told WPVI-TV. “I knew I was giving birth in my car.”

Fortunately, Joe Alan managed to stay relatively calm during the whole ordeal. After helping his wife into the back seat so she could safely deliver the baby, he called 911.

“I saw [my daughter's] head and that’s when it hit me, ‘We’re having a baby,’” Joe told WPVI, who said the 911 operator was able to walk him through the delivery process. “I was yelling, ‘We’re having a baby on the side of Route 1.’”

In spite of the drama, Bayleigh Kait was delivered safely just a minute after the couple pulled over. Both mother and daughter are doing fine, although the couple’s car might need a little help.

On Joe Alan’s Facebook page, the new father asked “So …. Who knows a good vehicle interior detailer?”

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Read More →

Delaware Dad Delivers Early Bundle of Joy on Busy Highway

Creatas/Thinkstock(PHILADELPHIA) — A Delaware woman is recovering after her newborn daughter arrived slightly earlier than expected.

Joe and Melissa Alan were on their way to the hospital with Melissa in labor, when the expectant mom realized they weren’t going to make it to the birthing center.

“It hit fast, it came fast and we did not have any time to get up there,” Melissa Alan told ABC News affiliate WPVI-TV in Philadelphia.

The couple was attempting an hour drive from their home to their planned birthing center but their daughter had other plans.

“Forty minutes down the road I told him to stop. We had to deliver there,” Melissa told WPVI-TV. “I knew I was giving birth in my car.”

Fortunately, Joe Alan managed to stay relatively calm during the whole ordeal. After helping his wife into the back seat so she could safely deliver the baby, he called 911.

“I saw [my daughter's] head and that’s when it hit me, ‘We’re having a baby,’” Joe told WPVI, who said the 911 operator was able to walk him through the delivery process. “I was yelling, ‘We’re having a baby on the side of Route 1.’”

In spite of the drama, Bayleigh Kait was delivered safely just a minute after the couple pulled over. Both mother and daughter are doing fine, although the couple’s car might need a little help.

On Joe Alan’s Facebook page, the new father asked “So …. Who knows a good vehicle interior detailer?”

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Read More →

Can World Cup Heartbreak Affect Your Health?

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — As Brazilian fans start to recover from their devastating loss to Germany in the World Cup semifinals, experts say that heartbroken fans should be sure to take care of themselves as losing can come at a cost greater than national pride.

A 2013 study published in Psychological Science journal found that fans were more likely to eat high fat and high calorie meals after their team lost an important game. Researchers looked at the eating habits of 726 people in cities with National Football League teams.

In cities where a team lost, fans consoled themselves by eating 10 percent more calories than a normal Monday and 16 percent more saturated fat, according to The Telegraph.

A similar study by the same authors conducted a study with 78 French sports fans and found when fans — especially soccer fans — wrote about a game their favorite team had lost, they ended up reaching for comfort food.

While experts have long known that people can overeat when they’re emotional, it wasn’t clear if simply losing the big game would qualify.

According to the study’s lead author and Ph.D candidate in marketing at the INSTEAD business school in Paris, Yann Cornil, the researchers were surprised with how clear the findings were.

“The research was usually done in a lab in which people watch sad movies and we look at how much we eat,” said lead author Yann Cornil. “It’s not very realistic. We were not sure in collecting real world data would replicate the results.”

But binging after a loss isn’t the only way a game can affect the health of devoted fans. Yann pointed out a 2011 study that examined traffic patterns after college and basketball games and found that nerve-rattling, close games could result in a rise in fatalities by as much as 133 percent.

Dr. Todd Peters, a child and adolescent psychiatrist at Vanderbilt Medical Center, said the biggest fans will often strongly identify with a team and this can be even more pronounced during international competitions where a sense of national pride also unifies fans.

“There’s the associating with the players, but also saying ‘This is us against the world,’ in the competition,” said Peters. “People will identify with certain player attributes or identity of a team…it’s that key piece that does bring up the level of emotions you see in defeat.”

Peters said it might just be game, but that fans can experience the same emotional devastation as going through a break-up, including depression and anger.

“When there is a loss it is almost like a break-up,” said Peters. “The team can no longer go on. You have to wait another four years to experience it again.”

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Read More →

Can World Cup Heartbreak Affect Your Health?

iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — As Brazilian fans start to recover from their devastating loss to Germany in the World Cup semifinals, experts say that heartbroken fans should be sure to take care of themselves as losing can come at a cost greater than national pride.

A 2013 study published in Psychological Science journal found that fans were more likely to eat high fat and high calorie meals after their team lost an important game. Researchers looked at the eating habits of 726 people in cities with National Football League teams.

In cities where a team lost, fans consoled themselves by eating 10 percent more calories than a normal Monday and 16 percent more saturated fat, according to The Telegraph.

A similar study by the same authors conducted a study with 78 French sports fans and found when fans — especially soccer fans — wrote about a game their favorite team had lost, they ended up reaching for comfort food.

While experts have long known that people can overeat when they’re emotional, it wasn’t clear if simply losing the big game would qualify.

According to the study’s lead author and Ph.D candidate in marketing at the INSTEAD business school in Paris, Yann Cornil, the researchers were surprised with how clear the findings were.

“The research was usually done in a lab in which people watch sad movies and we look at how much we eat,” said lead author Yann Cornil. “It’s not very realistic. We were not sure in collecting real world data would replicate the results.”

But binging after a loss isn’t the only way a game can affect the health of devoted fans. Yann pointed out a 2011 study that examined traffic patterns after college and basketball games and found that nerve-rattling, close games could result in a rise in fatalities by as much as 133 percent.

Dr. Todd Peters, a child and adolescent psychiatrist at Vanderbilt Medical Center, said the biggest fans will often strongly identify with a team and this can be even more pronounced during international competitions where a sense of national pride also unifies fans.

“There’s the associating with the players, but also saying ‘This is us against the world,’ in the competition,” said Peters. “People will identify with certain player attributes or identity of a team…it’s that key piece that does bring up the level of emotions you see in defeat.”

Peters said it might just be game, but that fans can experience the same emotional devastation as going through a break-up, including depression and anger.

“When there is a loss it is almost like a break-up,” said Peters. “The team can no longer go on. You have to wait another four years to experience it again.”

Follow @ABCNewsRadio
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Read More →