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Health & longevity news archive: May-June 2008

Jean Lavender
How care home keeps elderly healthy
(Jun 23, 2008)

A year ago, 88-year-old Jean Lavender used to find walking any distance a struggle. Now she is keen to get outside for a walk most days. And she puts the transformation down to the most simple of medicines – water. She is one of a group of residents at a care home in Suffolk who have been encouraged to increase their intake of water.

Read more. Source: BBC

ginkgo biloba
Ginkgo 'does not treat dementia'
(Jun 18, 2008)

A herbal extract used by an estimated 10% of people with dementia is not an effective treatment for it, an Imperial College London study suggests. Ginkgo biloba is commonly marketed as an aid to memory and some studies have reported benefits. But a six-month trial of 176 people with mild to moderate dementia found no difference between those taking ginkgo biloba and those taking placebo.

Read more. Source: BBC

bald man
Lab-grown cells 'treat baldness'
(Jun 5, 2008)

Cells grown in the laboratory may offer a possible solution to hair loss, preliminary trials have suggested. The technique involves taking small amounts of the remaining hair cells, multiplying them, then injecting them into bald areas. Six months after treatment, 11 out of 19 patients had grown new hair, UK researchers told an Italian conference.

Read more. Source: BBC

Smoking 'triggers deadly changes'
(May 15, 2008)

A key mechanism by which smoking triggers genetic changes that cause lung cancer has been unravelled. Researchers have shown exposure to cigarette smoke slows production of a protein called FANCD2 in lung cells. This protein plays a key role in repairing damage to DNA, and causing faulty cells to commit suicide before they go on to become cancerous.

Read more. Source: BBC

overweight children
Fat children may be tied to a lifetime of obesity
(May 5, 2008)

Be careful what you eat as a kid, because those extra fries could make it harder to shed pounds years later in life. A team of Swedish researchers has found that humans determine their total number of fat cells in childhood. New cells spring up and old ones perish, but their numbers change little after adolescence.

Read more. Source: New Scientist

brain game
Mental workout 'boosts the brain'
(May 1, 2008)

Even the slower-witted among us can improve mental agility with a few daily brain teasers, a study suggests. For those who hate crosswords but still fancy shining at work – fear not. The US-Swiss team behind the research say computer-based tests, which challenge the individual according to ability, may be more effective.

Read more. Source: BBC


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