Mental Attitude: Using Smartphones to Improve Mood.
An international study has found that smartphone-based psychotherapeutic exercises can improve one’s mood. In the study, participants were able to choose from different psychotherapeutic exercises lasting five minutes each. For example, some subjects recalled emotional experiences, while others repeated short sentences or number sequences in a contemplative manner, or played with their facial gestures. The researcher observed participants felt more alert, calmer, and uplifted after each session. Lead researcher Dr. Marion Tegethoff adds, “These findings demonstrate the viability of smartphone-based micro-interventions for improving mood in concrete, everyday situations.”
Frontiers in Psychology, July 2016
Health Alert: Breastfeeding on the Rise.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that 81.1% of new mothers are now breastfeeding their children, up from 79% in 2011. However, almost half abandon the practice by the time their child is six months old. Additionally, less than a third continue to breastfeed through their offspring’s first birthday. Studies show that not only does longer duration breastfeeding benefit the baby (a lower risk of ear infections, for example), but it also confers long-term benefits to the mother (such as a lower risk of heart disease and circulatory diseases).
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, August 2016
Diet: Get More Essential Fatty Acids.
Omega-3 fatty acids are known to improve heart health and help ward off heart disease. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics suggests these sources to ensure you’re getting these essential fatty acids: oils from soybeans, flaxseed, and canola; walnuts or walnut oil; fatty fish, including salmon, mackerel, lake trout, sardines, and albacore tuna; and eggs labeled as containing omega-3 fatty acids.
Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, August 2016
Exercise: Don’t Let Kids Be Lazy When School Is Out.
Physical education experts recommend parents keep their kids active when they’re not in school. Martin Wurmlinger, a physical education teacher at a Los Angeles middle school recommends structured activities, such as creating a circuit program that covers all five areas of fitness: cardiovascular endurance, muscle strength, muscle endurance, body composition, and flexibility. Examples include pushups, abdominal crunches, jumping jacks, squats, and stretching. He adds, “I encourage students to do physical fitness activities with friends or family. That’s usually more fun and a great motivator.”
University of California, Los Angeles, July 2016
Chiropractic: Dizziness May Be Caused By Dysfunction in the Neck…
Proprioception is the body’s ability to sense where its various parts are in relation to one another for purposes of movement and balance. Cervicogenic dizziness is a musculoskeletal disorder in which neck pain is associated with disequilibrium; however, according to researchers, “The pathophysiology is unclear and the neurophysiological basis remains to be ascertained.” In this study, researchers examined 20 cervicogenic dizziness patients and 22 healthy controls and found the dizziness patients exhibited impaired proprioception. Previous research has demonstrated chiropractic care can improve proprioception, which may offer a viable treatment option for the cervicogenic dizziness patient.
Neurologia, July 2016
Wellness/Prevention: First Comprehensive Cancer Blood Test Within Reach.
A research review of thousands of studies has allowed researchers to identify 788 biomarkers in blood that could be used to develop an early stage cancer screening test. The scientists hope that once clinical studies are completed, they will have a suite of about 50 biomarkers that can go into a clinical trial. Lead researcher, Dr. Lesley Uttley comments, “Our vision is that the screen will pick up even the small amounts of these biomarkers that might be in the blood at an early stage of the cancer, without necessarily identifying which cancer they relate to. Patients would then be referred for more specific tests that could narrow down the tumor type.” The researchers add that validation and trials will take six to eight years, but tests could be ready within three years for use in high risk groups.
EBioMedicine, July 2016