Health and Medical News and Resources

General interest items edited by Janice Flahiff

Alzheimer’s: Diet Patterns May Keep Brain from Shrinking

From the  29 December 2011 Science News Daily article

 People with diets high in several vitamins or in omega 3 fatty acids are less likely to have the brain shrinkage associated with Alzheimer’s disease than people whose diets are not high in those nutrients, according to a new study published in the December 28, 2011, online issue of Neurology®, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology…

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December 30, 2011 Posted by | Nutrition, Uncategorized | , , | Leave a comment

A gut-full of probiotics for your neurological well-being

From the 5 July 2011 Science Daily article

Probiotics, often referred to as ‘good bacteria’, are known to promote a healthy gut, but can they promote a healthy mind? Exploring the new world of neurological probiotics, researchers in BioEssays present new ideas on how neurochemicals delivered directly to the gut, via probiotic intestinal microbiota, exert their beneficial effects in maintaining gastrointestinal health and even psychological well-being.
The research, led by Professor Mark Lyte from Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, proposes that through a unifying process of microbial endocrinology, neurochemical-producing probiotics could act as a delivery mechanism for neuroactive compounds that could improve a host’s gastrointestinal and psychological health.
“This paper proposes a new field of microbial endocrinology, where microbiology meets neuroscience,” said Lyte. “There is already evidence to suggest that the connection between gut microbes and the nervous system represents a viable route for influencing neurological function. A recent study in mice, for example, showed that the presence of neurochemicals such a serotonin in the bloodstream was due to direct uptake from the gut.”
In his hypothesis Professor Lyte considers the selection of probiotics, such as lactobacilli and bifidobacteria, and how the active uptake of neurochemicals, generated by bacteria in the gut and circulated through a patient’s bloodstream, represents a pathway for probiotics to exert extra-intestinal effects including behavioral changes.

 

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July 6, 2011 Posted by | Consumer Health, Medical and Health Research News | , , , | 2 Comments

Quick, Simple Test Can Detect Concussion in Athletes

Quick, Simple Test Can Detect Concussion in Athletes

Screening superior to other sideline tests in spotting early signs of brain trauma, researchers say

HealthDay news image

 

 

From the February 13, 2011 Health Day news item by Robert Preidt

SATURDAY, Feb. 12 (HealthDay News) — A quick, simple test done on the sidelines of sports events can accurately detect concussion in athletes, a new study says.

The screening — known as the King-Devick test — is superior to current sideline tests that can fail to assess a wide range of brain functions, according to the researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine.

For this test, athletes are asked to read single digit numbers on index-sized cards. Normally, it takes about one minute. Any increase in the time needed to complete the test suggests the athlete has suffered a concussion, particularly if the delay is more than five seconds longer than the athlete’s baseline test time.

The researchers said the test can detect impairments in eye movement, attention, language and other symptoms of concussion. This study of 39 boxers found that test times improved an average of one second for those who didn’t experience head trauma, but worsened 11.1 seconds for those who did suffer head trauma and 18 seconds for those who were knocked out.

The study appears online in the journal Neurology.

“This rapid screening test provides an effective way to detect early signs of concussion, which can improve outcomes and hopefully prevent repetitive concussions,” senior author Dr. Laura Balcer, a professor of neurology, ophthalmology and epidemiology, said in a university news release.

“If validated in future studies, this test has the potential to become a standard sideline test for athletes,” she added.

SOURCE: University of Pennsylvania, news release, Feb. 2, 2011

 

 

 


February 15, 2011 Posted by | Consumer Health, Health News Items | , , , | Leave a comment

   

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