MCT Fats Found In Coconut Oil Boost Brain Function in Only One Dose

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Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCTs), the primary type of fat found within coconut oil, have been found to boost cognitive performance in older adults suffering from memory disorders as serious as Alzheimer’s — and not after months or even days of treatment, but after a single 40 ml dose! Continue reading

Pessimism about the Future May Lead to Longer, Healthier Life, Research Finds

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Optimistic older adults face greater risk of disabilities and death, study report

Older people who have low expectations for a satisfying future may be more likely to live longer, healthier lives than those who see brighter days ahead, according to new research published by the American Psychological Association.

“Our findings revealed that being overly optimistic in predicting a better future was associated with a greater risk of disability and death within the following decade,” said lead author Frieder R. Lang, Continue reading

Why Puzzles Aren’t the Best Thing to Prevent Dementia

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While it’s well-known that mental activities, like crossword puzzles, can be an excellent way to help prevent dementia, a new study published in the journal Neurology has actually found an even better way to keep your mind fresh.

According to the study, older adults who exercise regularly may better protect against brain shrinkage than if they were to engage in mental (or even social) activities. Going for a walk, riding a bicycle, or enjoying a swim will help protect your mind from dementia better Continue reading

The Most Important Vitamins as You Age

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Nutritional deficiencies are quite common among older adults. Getting improper nutrition for less than one year can lead to full-fledged deficiencies in vitamins B and C. More than a year spent not getting proper nutrition would result in deficiencies in vitamins A, D, E and K, as well as B12. The more frequent chronic illnesses and medication use further compromise the nutritional status in older individuals. One study found that there was a high number of vitamin deficiencies found even among those who claimed to be taking multivitamin supplements on a daily basis. Continue reading

Heart Failure Hospitalizations on the Decline

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Here is a study to sink your teeth into. The nationwide rate of being hospitalized for heart failure is on the decline. A major new study has found the positive health news, and it is well worth sharing. Continue reading

Opioids Linked to Higher Risk of Pneumonia in Older Adults

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Risks highest for long-acting opioids and new use, says Group Health study

Opioids – a class of medicines commonly given for pain — were associated with a higher risk of pneumonia in a study of 3,061 adults, aged 65 to 94, e-published in advance of publication in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. The study from researchers at Group Health Research Institute and the University of Washington (UW) also found that benzodiazepines, which are drugs generally given for insomnia and anxiety, did not affect pneumonia risk.

“Pneumonia is a common infection that can have serious consequences in older adults,” said study leader Sascha Dublin, MD, Ph.D, a Group Health Research Institute assistant investigator and Group Health primary care physician.

“Opioids and benzodiazepines work in different ways, but both can decrease the breathing rate. Both are also sedatives, which can increase the risk of aspiration.” Aspiration is inhaling material (including saliva or food particles) from the mouth into the lungs, which can lead to pneumonia.

A 2009 study estimated that two million Americans Continue reading

Can You Taste the Iron in Your Water?

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A new study says that, as people age, they may lose the ability to detect the taste of iron in drinking water. This piece of startling health news raises the concern that older adults could be at risk of over-exposure to iron.

Researchers point out that tasting the metallic flavor in water can help people limit exposure to metals such as iron. This trace element, required by the body to transport oxygen in red blood cells, is found naturally in water or from the corrosion of iron water-supply pipes. However, doctors’ advice to all patients is that you need less iron after the age of 50.

That metallic flavor in water, caused by the dissolved iron and copper commonly found in groundwater or that may leak into tap water from corroded pipes, has been an issue for both consumers and utility companies.

More than two million miles of the United States’ water and wastewater pipes are nearing the end of their useful life. But, these facilities, which are generally underground, don’t attract too much attention. This study is highlighting the fact that attention may be necessary. Continue reading

The Important Necessity of Eye Exams for Older Adults

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Older adults are at higher risk for eye disease and vision problems, so you’ll want to take very seriously any unusual symptoms someone you’re concerned about may be having with his vision. That’s because early detection and treatment can greatly reduce the risk of partial or complete blindness. Routine eye exams are crucial, too, as some eye diseases arrive without any warning.

How often should an older adult’s vision be screened?

For those 65 and older, the American Academy of Ophthalmology recommends complete eye exams every year or two. If a person hasn’t seen an eye doctor recently, it’s important to schedule an appointment. Even if he isn’t having any symptoms or any trouble seeing, it’s possible to have an eye disease. There are often no obvious early symptoms of glaucoma, for example, and the disease progresses slowly. In fact, experts estimate that almost half of those with glaucoma don’t know they have it.

A person may need more frequent exams (perhaps even more often than once a year) if he has certain medical conditions, like diabetes or high blood pressure, which may put him at higher risk for some eye diseases. The eye doctor might want to see him more often, too, if he:    Continue reading

Add These Herbs to Meals to Prevent Hip Pain

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A sore hip makes everything more difficult — from sleeping to walking up stairs. But you could keep those hips of yours feeling fine if you’re a lover of garlic and onions.

About 15 percent of older adults regularly deal with hip pain. But in a recent study of women, those who tended to eat lots of produce — particularly herbs from the allium family, such as onions and garlic — showed fewer signs of hip osteoarthritis in x-ray tests.

Arthritis-Fighting Allium
The study analyzed the diets of a large group of middle-aged adult twins, most of whom did not have symptoms of arthritis when the study started. Eating lots of allium herbs correlated with less arthritis in the hip. And in a separate lab analysis, researchers also found that diallyl  Continue reading

What is Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)

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Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS, is a disease in which certain nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord slowly die. These nerve cells are called motor neurons, and they control the muscles that allow you to move the parts of your body. ALS is also called Lou Gehrig’s disease.

People with ALS gradually become more disabled. How quickly the disease gets worse is different for everyone. Some people live with ALS for several years. But over time, ALS makes it hard to walk, speak, eat, swallow, and breathe. These problems can lead to injury, illness, and eventually death.

It can be very scary to learn that you have ALS. Talking with your doctor, getting counseling, or joining a support group may help you deal with your feelings. Your family members may also need support or counseling as your disease gets worse.                                                                                       Continue reading