Physical Health

Planning, Support Can Prevent Excess Weight Gain in Pregnancy

Pregnant, obese women who set calorie goals and attended weekly support groups were less likely to gain unhealthy amounts of weight or give birth to overweight babies, Reuters reported Aug. 28. Researchers noted that more than half of U.S. women are overweight or obese when they become pregnant, and about half gain too much weight […]

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Action Movies Could Make You Eat More

Distraction is the enemy of discipline when it comes to healthy eating, as demonstrated by a new study on the effect of entertainment consumption on calorie consumption. The Associated Press reported Sept. 2 that a small study by Cornell University researchers found that study subjects who watched a movie thriller under controlled conditions ate 140 […]

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Accuracy of Fitness Devices Varies

How accurately does your fitness device measure your workout? There’s typically a decent margin of error, although some perform better than others. Details reported Aug. 28 that researchers found a 10-15 percent average variance between clinically measured activity and that recorded by personal fitness devices. Specifically, the most accurate devices were BodyMedia FIT, Fitbit Zip, and […]

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Mercury Levels in Fish Vary by Region

The same species of fish can contain widely different levels of mercury depending on where it comes from, Reuters reported Aug. 28. Researchers found, for example, that Chilean sea bass certified by the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)  had less than half the mercury (0.35 ppm) of that found in samples of uncertified fish (0.89 ppm). Chilean […]

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Study Finds Trans Fats in Supposedly Fat-Free Foods

Nearly one in 10 types of popular packaged foods contains artery-clogging trans fats, and that includes the 84 percent of products that are labeled trans-fat free, according to a study by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Researchers found that 9 percent of the 4,340 products studied contained partially hydrogenated oils. “The U.S. […]

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Memory Problems Can Have Many Causes

Having memory problems? It may not be a case of inattention or a byproduct of aging. Health magazine reported Aug. 28 that memory loss can also be caused by a variety of other conditions, including: a dysfunctional thyroid hot flashes lack of sleep anxiety and depression prescription drugs like anti-anxiety, antidepressant, and heart medications smoking […]

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Fewer Parents See Kids as Overweight

Cultural norms regarding weight have shifted in recent decades, and that may be reflected in a recent survey. Reuters reported Aug. 27 that in 2010 fewer parents correctly identified their children as overweight or obese compared to 1988. In the earlier survey, 78 percent of parents of overweight boys and 61 percent of parents of overweight […]

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Pediatricians Say Start Using Fluoride Toothpaste Early

Parents should start brushing their children’s teeth with toothpaste containing fluoride as soon as they come in, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) says. WebMD reported Aug. 25 that the AAP recommends using an amount of toothpaste about the size of a grain of rice until children reach age 3; after that, use a pea-sized […]

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Call for Ban on Indoor E-Cigarette Use

The World Health Organization (WHO) says that use of e-cigarettes should be banned in indoor public spaces just like regular smoking, saying the devices spew toxins into the air. CNN reported Aug. 26 that the leading health group of the United Nations also called for stricter advertising regulations on e-cigarettes and steps to prevent manufacturers from […]

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Exercise Protects Older Women from Heart Problems

Older women have a lower risk of incident atrial fibrillation — a type of heart arrhythmia — if they exercise more, HealthDay News reported Aug. 21. The protective effects of exercise persist even among women who are obese, researchers from Stanford University found. The study followed a group of postmenopausal women over the course of […]

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