Weekly Health Update

 May 21, 2018
“Take care of all your memories. For you cannot relive them.”
~ Bob Dylan

Mental Attitude: “Heading” the Ball Poses Dangers to Soccer Players. 
A study that included more than 300 amateur soccer players revealed that those who “headed” the ball the most scored the worst on tests of their attention, reaction time, and working memory. Based on these findings, study author Dr. Michael Lipton notes, “[We’re] concerned that subtle, even transient, reductions in neuropsychological function from heading could translate to microstructural changes in the brain that then lead to persistently impaired function.”
Frontiers in Neurology, April 2018

Health Alert: Vitamin D May Protect the Liver. 
An analysis of data from the Alpha-Tocopherol, Beta-Carotene Cancer Prevention (ATBC) Study indicates that individuals with low vitamin D levels may be twice as likely to develop liver cancer than those with healthy vitamin D levels. The authors of the analysis note that their results suggest that maintaining healthy vitamin D levels may reduce one’s risk for cancer of the liver.
Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, May 2018

Diet: A Bit of Dark Chocolate May Improve Vision. 
Just a few bites of dark chocolate may offer a slight and temporary boost in vision quality. In this study, researchers conducted vision tests on 30 healthy adults before and after they consumed either a 1.5 ounce of a 72% cacao dark chocolate bar or a crispy rice milk chocolate bar. They found that the participants who ate the dark chocolate experienced small improvements in visual acuity and large–letter contrast that were not observed in the milk chocolate group.
JAMA Ophthalmology, April 2018

Exercise: Exercise the Blues Away. 
No matter where you live or what your age, regular exercise can reduce your risk of depression. An analysis of data from 49 studies that included nearly 267,000 people in North America, Europe, and Oceania showed an association between high levels of physical activity and a lower risk for depression for all ages.
American Journal of Psychiatry, April 2018

Chiropractic: Smoking and Cervical Disk Degeneration… 
What effect does smoking have, if any, on the cervical disks? In this study, researchers examined 320 patients with a chief complaint of neck-shoulder pain and found that those who were smokers had a greater degree of cervical disk degeneration, as shown on MRI scans, than nonsmokers. Furthermore, the participants who smoked also reported more severe pain scores than the nonsmoking individuals in the study. These findings provide yet another reason to either stop smoking or to never start in the first place.
International Journal of Surgery, April 2018

Wellness/Prevention: Recommended Cancer Screening for Older Adults. 
Even if you follow a healthy lifestyle, you shouldn’t ignore cancer screening as you age. Because early-stage cancer doesn’t always exhibit symptoms, the American Cancer Society recommends men over the age of 65 be screened for colon cancer, prostate cancer, and lung cancer. For women over 65, the American Cancer Society recommends screening for breast cancer (mammogram, at least every two years), cervical cancer, colon cancer, and lung cancer.
American Cancer Society, April 2018

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