Mental Attitude: Are You a Daydream Driver?
According to a new study, you may not be as conscientious on the road as you think. In the study, researchers asked nine adults to participate in a driving simulation task for twenty minutes twice a day for five consecutive days intended to replicate a commute to and from work. They found that the brains of the participants frequently wandered away from the task at hand, as evidenced by brain activity patterns indicating reduced receptiveness to external stimuli. Study co-author Dr. Carryl Baldwin explains, “Mind wandering may be an essential part of human existence and unavoidable. It may be a way to restore the mind after a long day at the office. What we are not sure about yet, is how dangerous it is during driving. We need additional research to figure this out.”
Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, August 2017
Health Alert: Bacteria in Throat May Help Identify Bone and Joint Infection.
In a new study, researchers examined 77 kids, six months to four years of age, who had confirmed a bone or joint infection and found that throat swabs from the majority of the children (70%) indicated the presence of a bacteria called Kingella kingae. This bacteria was uncommon in throat swabs collected from 300 healthy children who served as a control group. The researchers hope their finding will help accelerate the diagnosis process for bone and joint infections, which may improve treatment outcomes.
CMAJ, September 2017
Diet: Fiber Intake Reduces COPD Risk.
A review of data concerning 45,058 Swedish men suggests that current and former smokers who consume more than 36 grams of fiber per day have a 38-46% reduced risk for developing chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) when compared with current/former smokers who consume less than 23 grams of fiber each day.
Epidemiology, September 2017
Exercise: Exercise During Pregnancy Good for Mom and Baby.
A recent report confirms there is strong scientific evidence for moderate exercise during pregnancy and that it is safe and beneficial for both mother and child. In the report, investigators observed the following benefits associated with moderate exercise during pregnancy: the prevention of excessive weight gain; a lower risk of fetal macrosomia; and a lower risk of pre-eclampsia, gestational diabetes, caesarean section, lower back pain, pelvic pain, and urinary incontinence. Furthermore, they found no risk of premature birth, low birth weight, or fetal distress, provided that the mother had no medical or obstetric contraindication for physical exercise.
Journal of American Medicine Association, March 2017
Chiropractic: Back Pain and Falls Among Older Men.
Surveys completed by 5,568 elderly men indicate that 67% experienced back pain during the past year, 25% fell at least once, and 11% had recurrent falls. Further analysis showed that participants with back pain had at least a 20% increased risk for falling, with an even higher risk for those with greater back pain severity and frequency. The data suggests that reducing back pain among the elderly population could reduce their risk for falls.
The Journals of Gerontology, Series A, Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences, September 2017
Wellness/Prevention: Food Safety Tips.
The United States Department of Health & Human Services offers these suggestions in hopes of thwarting food-borne illness: wash hands and surfaces often; use a meat thermometer to ensure that foods are cooked at the correct temperature; and don’t leave food at room temperature for more than two hours.
Health & Human Services, September 2017