A small study of adults with a diagnosis of mild cognitive impairment (which may progress to dementia) divided participants into two groups. One group participated in Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) using meditation and yoga. The other group served as a control. The MBSR group participated in a day-long retreat, met as a group for two hours a week, and was encouraged to meditate at home for 15-30 minutes per day. After just eight weeks, brain scans of MBSR group participants showed positive improvements related to memory and cognitive function. This may indicate a slowing in dementia progression.
Neuroscience Letters, November 2013
When compared to other diseases and injuries, “major depressive disorder” (MDD) ranked as the second leading cause of global disability and 11th leading cause of global burden (quality years lost to disability).
PLoS Medicine, November 2013
New research shows that green tea polyphenols may help slow or prevent some types of cancer. A double-blind, placebo-controlled study found that premalignant prostate lesions were three times less likely to progress to malignant tumors in men who took a 600mg green tea catechins supplement daily for a year (9% vs. 30% in the control group).
American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, December 2013
No matter what your current weight, being active boosts high-density lipoprotein (HDL), or “good” cholesterol, and decreases unhealthy triglycerides. This one-two punch keeps your blood flowing smoothly, which decreases your risk of cardiovascular diseases. Regular physical activity can help you prevent or manage a wide range of health problems and concerns including stroke, metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes, depression, certain types of cancer, arthritis, and falls.
Mayo Clinic, November 2013
Disks act as cushions between the vertebrae in your spine. They’re composed of an outer layer of tough cartilage that surrounds softer cartilage in the center. A bulging disk extends outside the space it should occupy. The bulge typically affects a large portion of the disk, so it may look a little like a hamburger that’s too big for the bun. A herniated disk results when a tear in the outer layer of cartilage allows some of the inner cartilage to protrude out of the disk. The protrusion of inner cartilage in a herniated disk usually happens in one distinct area. Herniated disks are also called ruptured disks or slipped disks.
Mayo Clinic, November 2013
Female rats born to mothers who had been through stressful life events prior to pregnancy showed increased expression of the CRF1 gene (a gene that mediates the body’s response to stress) in the frontal cortex, the part of the brain involved in emotional regulation and decision making. When the female offspring were exposed to stress, they behaved differently than female offspring whose mothers were not stressed prior to pregnancy. This finding is a part of a growing body of evidence that a parent’s experiences can affect their offspring, even before conception takes place.
Biological Psychiatry, November 2013