Watercress Turns Off Breast Cancer Cell Growth

Long associated with tea sandwiches and white gloves, watercress contains a powerful plant compound that may help fight breast cancer.

According to a study conducted at the University of Southampton and published in the British Journal of Nutrition and Biochemical Pharmacology, Continue reading

Ten Ways Hot Peppers Help you Be Healthy and Lose Weight

Hot peppers are now at the medical community’s center of attention due to its promising benefits to the overall health and weight loss process, thanks to its natural compound called capsaicin. This substance works in so many different ways that can guarantee faster shedding of fat without compromising safety. Below are the 10 benefits of capsaicin for healthier weight loss. Continue reading

Medicine Gets a Feel for the Orient

Acupuncture is being trialed in emergency rooms in Victorian hospitals.

AFTER more than 2500 years, traditional Chinese medicines and therapies are finding a place in the once-sceptical world of Western emergency departments and medical laboratories.

The Chinese Medicine department at RMIT’s School of Health Sciences, the largest provider of Chinese medicine studies in Australia, is collaborating with a range of Victorian hospitals to trial the use and benefits of ancient remedies such as acupuncture and ginseng.

Acupuncture has been trialled on patients suffering acute pain in emergency rooms at the Alfred, Northern, Epworth and Cabrini Hospitals, while ginseng – a root believed to increase stamina and quality of life since the 11th century – is being tested to relieve symptoms of chronic lung disease at Box Hill Hospital and Austin Health.

Professor Charlie Xue, Continue reading

Walking Regularly Taking Supplement Can Significantly Ease Pain of Arthritis

SYDNEY – Walking less than two miles a couple of times a week and taking a natural supplement can significantly ease the crippling pain of arthritis, a new study shows.

 Walking further or for five days a week did not make patients feel substantially better, the study also shows.

Experts recommend that most people walk for much longer, around 10,000 steps a day, to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

But there has been confusion over how much exercise those with osteoarthritis, the ‘wear and tear’ form of the condition, thought to affect around eight million people in Britain, should take.

Dr Kristiann Heesch, from the University of Queensland in Australia, who led the study, said: “These findings provide preliminary evidence that osteoarthritis sufferers can benefit from a combination of glucosamine sulphate and walking 3,000 steps per day for exercise, in bouts of at least 1,500 steps each, on at least three days per week.”

The supplement, glucosamine sulphate, which is made from the shells of shellfish, has previously been linked to easing the pain of arthritis, although the evidence has not been conclusive.

Volunteers took the supplement for six weeks, by the end of which their pain levels had fallen by 13 per cent.

They were then asked start taking regular exercise on top of the supplement.

By the end of six months patients reported that both their levels of pain and stiffness had halved, the findings, published in the journal Arthritis Research and Therapy, show.

Jane Tadman, from the Arthritis Research Campaign, said: “We know that exercise and keeping mobile is very important for people with arthritis to keep the muscles that support the joints strong and supple.

“But we don’t really know what the appropriate amount of exercise is, and this study is an attempt to answer that.”

She added: “Recent studies into the effectiveness of glucosamine have been very mixed, although anecdotally lots of people with osteoarthritis report some benefit.”

Jane Spence, from Arthritis Care, said: “Maintaining a healthy weight and taking a mixture of appropriate exercise and rest as advised by your health professional is sensible for people to manage their condition.

“Exercise is good for overall wellbeing, helps mobility, and actually lifts low spirits by releasing endorphins – the body’s natural ‘painkillers’ – into the bloodstream.”

The University of Queensland team admit that there study was small, with only 36 patients completing the full six months – in part because some were advised to drop out of the trial by their family doctor, concerned that they should not take too much exercise.

They have called for larger studies to validate their findings.

Last year similar research suggested that practising Tai Chi could ease the pain of arthritis.

The NHS performs 65,000 knee replacements a year, many on patients with arthritis of the knee.

Blueberries Keep Brain Active In the Afternoon

LONDON – A blueberry smoothie at breakfast can stop you flagging in the afternoon, a new study shows.

Researchers found that a large helping of the fruit – described by some as nature’s ’superfood’ – boosts concentration and memory up to five hours later.

The study, reported at the British Science Festival, also claims that blueberry can help fight dementia in the long term.

British scientists who made the discovery believe the antioxidants in blueberries stimulate the flow of blood and oxygen to the brain – and keep the mind fresh.

Dr Jeremy Spencer, a molecular nutritionist at the University of Reading who carried out the latest study, said: “I think that the findings were impressive and have the potential in the long term to lead to cognitive improvement.”

To reach the conclusion, the researchers tested the fruit’s powers on a group of 40 adults made up of students aged between 18 and 30, reports The Telegraph.

The group was given a set diet, which included a blueberry smoothie, and then asked to do a number of exercises to test their powers of concentration throughout the day.

A month later they were brought back and given the same diet and tests but without the smoothie.

Researchers found that while there was no change in the cognitive powers between the two occasions for the first few hours, towards the end of the day the smoothie stopped the concentration flagging, while without it dropped by up to 20 per cent.

“After one hour there was little difference in the attention tests but after five hours people who did not have the smoothie’s performance dropped by 15 to 20 per cent,” said Spencer.

The results were repeated with another group of 40 volunteers, this time pensioners.

He said that he was now concentrating on the long term effects of eating blueberries and particularly their effect on the hippocampus, the part of the brain related to memory.