Science is producing amusing results week by week investigating subjects and topics that may change the way our children will live their life a few decades from now on.
Here is this week's selection:
Weight loss success linked with active self-control regions of the brain
New research suggests that higher-level brain functions have a major role in losing weight. In a study among 24 participants at a weight-loss clinic, those who achieved greatest success in terms of weight loss demonstrated more activity in the brain regions of the lateral prefrontal cortex associated with self-control.
Source: Cell Press
Eating leafy greens could help prevent macular degeneration
A new study has shown that eating vegetable nitrates, found mainly in green leafy vegetables and beetroot, could help reduce your risk of developing early-stage age-related macular degeneration (AMD).
Source: Westmead Institute for Medical Research
New finding could unmask blood doping in athletes
Autologous blood doping, in which an athlete is transfused with their own stored red blood cells to increase their oxygen capacity for competition, might be detectable now with the use of a microRNA marker of blood aging. An 18-nucleotide miRNA called miR-720 is produced in a predictable pattern as blood ages, which would allow sports officials to detect this kind of blood doping for the first time. The finding might also improve blood storage.
Source: Duke University
When fathers exercise, children are healthier, even as adults
Most parents know that the diet and exercise habits of a pregnant woman impacts the health of her baby, but little is known about how a father's health choices are passed to his children. A new study finds that lifestyle practices of fathers prior to conception may have a major impact on the lifelong health of their children.
Source: Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center
Gut microbiota of infants predicts obesity in children
Evaluating the gut microbiota of infants may help identify children who are at risk for becoming overweight or obese. The research revealed that gut microbiota composition at two years of life is associated with body mass index (BMI) at age 12. In addition, the BMI at age two was not significantly higher in children who later became overweight/obese, indicating that gut microbiota composition may be the earliest warning sign for detecting obesity.
Source: American Society for Microbiology
Researchers make mice lose weight by imitating effects from cold and nicotine
Inspired by some of the effects from winter swimming and smoking, researchers have found a way to improve the metabolism of mice and make them lose weight. They have done so by stimulating the body's so-called cold and nicotinic receptors.
Source: University of Copenhagen The Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences
Better cardiorespiratory fitness leads to longer life
Elite performers had an 80 percent reduction in mortality risk when compared to lower performers.
Researchers have found that better cardiorespiratory fitness leads to longer life, with no limit to the benefit of aerobic fitness. Researchers retrospectively studied 122,007 patients who underwent exercise treadmill testing between Jan. 1, 1991, and Dec. 31, 2014, to measure all-cause mortality relating to the benefits of exercise and fitness.
Source: Cleveland Clinic
Just a few drinks can change how memories are formed
Researchers have found that alcohol hijacks a conserved memory pathway in the brain and changes which versions of genes are made, forming the cravings that fuel addiction.
Source: Brown University
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