Healthy Eating May Lower Your Chances Of Getting Dementia - Ellen Dolgen
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Healthy Eating May Lower Your Chances Of Getting Dementia

For a really long time, we’ve been told that to reap the benefits of eating healthy, you have to start when you’re young. Then you have to spend your entire life eating healthy (no hot fudge sundaes…seriously?) or you could end up with a high risk of diseases like Alzheimer’s or Dementia. Marjo Eskelin, a neurological doctoral candidate at the University of Eastern Finland presented interesting findings in her doctoral thesis.  Adults who switched their diet to a healthier one by age 50, had a significantly lower chance to develop dementia than those of that age group who didn’t modify their diet.  Eskelin did base her findings on the average Finnish diet, but still….take heart, if you put away the junk food now, you’ll be around a lot longer to annoy friends and family.

A new study from researchers at the Mayo Clinic found that the onset of diabetes type 2 in midlife can affect cognition by shrinking the brain. The researchers also found that if the onset of diabetes occurs around age 64, it won’t affect comprehension or performance. The findings indicate that the decrease in cognitive function via diabetes happens very slowly over time.

Could bigger be better? Caryl Nowson teaches at Deakin University in Australia, and she has been researching and studying BMI (Body Mass Index).  You know those awful charts that tell you how much you should weigh for your height? Well, that’s the BMI at work. Her findings, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition will make you very happy. Why? Because she found that adults age 65 at the high end of the BMI index had a lower risk of mortality and those at the lower-end were at a higher risk of mortality. Now, don’t you feel better!

Over the years, we’ve heard doctors, nutritionists, and the American Heart Association exclaim about the importance of having a diet rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids, like Omega-3s and Omega-6s, and eat less saturated fats for maximum heart health. A new study headed by Dr.  Rajiv Chowdhury (University of Cambridge) that was published by Annals of Internal Medicine found out that there really wasn’t a correlation between the risk of heart attacks and the consumption of polyunsaturated fatty acids. That doesn’t mean that you can go back to eating all the French fries, you want, as the doctors noted in the study, “That the available evidence is generally limited,” and they will continue to conduct research into polyunsaturated fats. The other advice on what to eat: No trans fats, eat more fruits, vegetables and whole grains, also stay away from reduced saturated fat still stands.

Did you know that a knee or hip replacement could help you live longer? A seven-year study investigated 153 matched pairs of patients involved in it and noted that those who did opt for knee or hip replacement surgery reduced their risk for stroke, heart attack, and cardiovascular disease by 44%. Dr. Bheeshma Ravi, MD, an orthopedics resident at the University of Toronto originally reported his findings in the British Medical Journal in 2013, but had recently updated his findings and presented the new report at the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons in New Orleans this past Monday.

Women undergoing perimenopause and menopause routinely seek out a menopause specialist for HRT therapy and management of menopausal symptoms. A new study that was released in the Journal of Women’s Health, suggests that since internists should also be included in treating menopause because they are “trained to evaluate and integrate factors influencing multiple organ systems (they) should re-engage in menopause management.”  The curriculum for medical students studying internal medicine would be changed to include a new program that would encompass the study of menopause management. Residents and physicians who wish to work in menopause management would study the new core programs as well. 

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