Hemp seed oil is good for heart

Derived from Cannabis plant, hemp seed is a good source of edible oil. Most of us don’t know that hemp seed oil is good for heart health. When compared to other forms of Cannabis, the hallucinogenic properties of hemp are low, and possess high levels of beta-carotene, minerals, fibre, vitamin A, C, E and proteins.                                                                             
Cannabis is being used for textile, food and medicinal purposes.

Botanical study led by Dr. Fernandez-Arche has investigated the health benefits of hemp seed oil. The team have found abundant levels of sterols and linolenic acids are present in hemp seed oils. Linolenic acid belongs to omega-3 fatty acids that prevent heart diseases and other vascular diseases.

The study was published in ACS’ Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry.

Skip breakfast to develop metabolic syndrome

Skipping breakfast during teenage could increase risk of developing metabolic syndrome in later parts of the life. Metabolic syndrome is characterized by high blood cholesterol, diabetes, obesity and high blood pressure. The study was published in the journal Public Health Nutrition.                                                                        

People who ate poor breakfast or neglect breakfast are at high risk of developing metabolic syndrome during adulthood. The Swedish survey has inquired the breakfast habits of about 889 teens during 1981.

The study subjects were followed-up over 27 years and evidences of high blood pressure, diabetes and obesity were observed in 68% of people who skipped breakfast.

IVF: A Boon or Bane?

In vitro fertilization (IVF) or test tube baby technique was introduced in 1981 and till date over 10 million babies were born using the treatment. However, the technique may be overused, and the risks could outweigh the benefits, according to a study published in British Medical Journal.                                                                          

IVF should be considered for women who are severely infertile or having infertile partner. But, most of the fertility experts are using IVF to treat unexplained infertility, a common problem among modern day couples. Most of the unexplained infertility patients are able to conceive naturally before treatment, and hence the rationality of IVF use in such individuals is questionable, according to a Dutch study.  

Some research studies have pointed out that extended IVF use could increase the health risks in both mother and the unborn fetus. Some of the common complications of multiple pregnancies associated with IVF are fetal growth restrictions, diabetes during pregnancy, preeclampsia and premature birth in the unborn fetus.

When compared to naturally conceived babies, singleton born to an assisted pregnant mother is prone to obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes and blood vessel abnormalities.

In the recent days, IVF has turned to be a profit-generating industry for fertility clinicians. Most of the research studies do not assess the long-term safety of IVF in mothers and children, the health experts have concerned.

For unexplained infertility patients, when it comes to pregnancy, the choice should be decided be the couples, not by the physicians. To minimize health risks, IVF interventions should be used judiciously.

Exercise could cut the breast cancer death risk

Even moderate intensity exercises could cut the breast cancer related death risk among survivors, a recent study published in the International Journal of Cancer has suggested. Moderate physical activities including running rather than walking could be beneficial for breast cancer patients. Performing moderate physical activities for at least 2.5 hours per week could reduce the mortality risk by 25% in the breast cancer patients.                                                        

The benefits were evident in patients who had brisk walking for less than a mile or running for two-thirds of a mile, every day.

When compared to walkers, 40% reduced mortality risk was observed among the runners. However, the walkers were able to cut the risk by just 5%. The present did not contradict the benefits of walking in normal individuals; rather, focused on the breast cancer patients.

To achieve healthy weight loss, running is comparatively effective than walking. To lower the risks of diabetes, heart diseases and hip replacements, running and walking are equally effective.

Heavy drinkers are more prone to skin cancer risk

Alcoholics, particularly heavy drinkers are more prone to skin cancer risk, a recent study has suggested. When compared to moderate drinkers, the risk of developing skin cancer (melanoma) is 50% higher among heavy drinkers. Even one drink a day may increase the chance of getting melanoma by 20%.                                                                 
Three or four drinks a day could increase the biological sensitivity of body to sun rays.

Too much exposure to sun rays could cause skin cancer. Alcohol impairs body’s natural defense mechanism against the ultraviolet (UV) rays, present in sunlight that increase skin cancer risk. Alcohol is converted into acetaldehydewhich also increases body’s sensitivity to sunlight. However, the complete biological mechanisms are unknown.

The study was published in the British Journal of Dermatology.

Probiotics could help weight loss

In women, consumption of probiotics could help weight loss, researchers have suggested. The influence of intestinal bacteria on obesity is well documented. High fat foods with low dietary fiber could promote certain intestinal bacterial growth, and contributes to obesity. Probiotics could modulate the intestinal bacterial imbalance, and reduce obesity. The study was published in British Journal of Nutrition.                                                                    
The present involved 125 obese individuals and were on 12-week weight-loss diet followed by 12-week maintenance period to monitor the body weight. About 50% of the participants were assigned to receive probiotics, and the rest were on sham (placebo) treatment.

After 12 weeks, an average weight loss of 4.4 kg among probiotics-treated women was observed, compared to 2.6 kg in the placebo group. No weight differences among males were reported.

During the maintenance period, the body weight remained to be same in the placebo group, and continued weight loss was reported in the probiotics-treated women. The total weight loss was about 5.2 kg in treated women, in 24 weeks.

Reduced intestinal colonization of obesity-causing bacteria and appetite-regulating hormone levels were observed in the probiotics treated women. 

Yoga could reduce breast cancer complications

Practicing yoga could reduce the breast cancer complications such as fatigue and inflammation, a recent study published in Journal of Clinical Oncology has suggested.                                                        
Randomized-controlled clinical trial was conducted for six months involving breast cancer patients. The participants were divided into two groups, one group received formal yoga therapy for three months, and the rest were on normal routine activities. The participants have practiced yoga twice weekly for 12 weeks. All the breast cancer patients were yoga novices, and completed breast cancer therapy before the start of the study.

After six months, reduced fatigue and inflammation was reduced by 57% and 20%, respectively, in the yoga-practiced patients. Modest yoga practice for several months could improve the symptoms among breast cancer survivors, the researchers have suggested.

High protein diets are linked with kidney diseases risk

Experimental animal studies have suggested that high protein diets are linked with kidney diseases risks. Dukan diet is a popular high-protein diet that is gaining steam in the recent years, and being adopted by several celebrities including Duchess of Cambridge and Jennifer Lopez. The health benefits of Dukan diet are quite controversial. The dietary regimen was introduced by a French physician, Dr. Pierre Dukan.                                                                                             

Researchers from the University of Granada, Spain have suggested that high-protein diet raise the kidney diseases and kidney stone risk. Even, Dr. Dukan has warned about the potential problems associated health problems such as bad breath, constipation, vitamin and/or mineral deficiencies and reduced energy. Discontinuation of Dukan diet may increase weight gain within three years with significant risk of heart diseases, high blood pressure and diabetes.

The scientists fed the experimental animals with protein-rich diet for 12 weeks, and compared the results with normal feed received animals. The former group lost about 10% of body weight with increased kidney weight by 22%, which attributes to kidney diseases. 

Evidence of kidney diseases such as kidney stones was present in most of the protein-rich diet fed animals.

These results could be similar to the humans, and caution should be exercised while consuming high protein diet, the experts have warned.

Regular exercise with intake of more fresh fruits and vegetable could reduce kidney diseases among Dukan diet consumers.

Olive oil may prevent breast cancer

A recent study conducted by a team of US scientists has suggested that hydroxytyrosol present in olive oil may prevent cancer risk in postmenopausal women. Olive oil is good for heart health and against stroke risk.                                                                          
A direct correlation between breast density and breast cancer risk, said Tejal Patel, medical oncologist at Houston Methodist Cancer Center. Decreased breast is linked reduced breast cancer risk.

The study results were based on clinical trials that involved over 100 postmenopausal women. The participants received 25 mg hydroxytyrosol capsule for one year with regular health checkups. The olive oil chemical has significantly reduced the breast density among the participants.