Weekly Health Update Week Of: Monday, May 9th, 2016

“There are two ways to get enough.
One is to continue to accumulate more and more.
The other is to desire less.”
~ G.K. Chesterton

Mental Attitude: Death and the Very Elderly.
Older seniors are often willing to talk about death, but they’re rarely asked about it. British researchers interviewed several dozen people over 95 years of age about their attitudes on death and end-of-life care and noted that most of them felt prepared to die. Study leader Dr. Jane Fleming explains, “Death is clearly a part of life for people who have lived to such an old age, so the older people we interviewed were usually willing to discuss dying, a topic often avoided.” She adds that in order to better support men and women dying at increasingly older ages “we need to understand their priorities as they near the end of life.”
PLOS ONE, April 2016

Health Alert: Hearing Loss May Indicate Higher Medical Bills for Some Adults.
Hearing loss among late middle-aged adults appears to be associated with higher medical costs. Investigators examined the healthcare use of over 560,000 adults between the ages of 55 and 64 and found that those with hearing loss had 33% higher healthcare costs than those without hearing loss over an 18-month period. Study author Dr. Annie Simpson notes, “This finding indicates that negative health-related effects of hearing loss, a condition that many consider simply an unavoidable result of aging, may manifest earlier than is generally recognized and may affect use of healthcare across the continuum of care.”
JAMA Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery, April 2016

Diet: Oily Fish Consumed During Pregnancy May Reduce Asthma Risk in Kids as They Age.
Children of mothers who regularly ate salmon while they were pregnant may be less likely to receive a medical diagnosis of asthma than children whose mother did not eat salmon during their pregnancy. In this study, one group of women ate salmon twice a week from week 19 of their pregnancy through delivery and one group of women refrained from eating salmon during the same time frame. Their children had allergy tests at six months of age and then again two to three years later. The results revealed no difference in the rate of asthma between the two groups of children at six months of age; however, as the children grew, those exposed to salmon while in utero were significantly less likely to be develop asthma when compared with the children of mothers who abstained from salmon during pregnancy.
University of Southampton, April 2016

Exercise: Exercise Improves Blood Vessel Health Among Stressed.
Past studies have shown that constant stress is associated with signs of poor blood vessel health and an increased risk for cardiovascular disease. A new animal-based study has found that exercise protected blood vessel function in rats regularly subjected to stress. The researchers conclude that exercise training may therefore be an important therapy for promoting greater arterial compliance among chronically stressed individuals.
American Physiological Society (APS), April 2016

Chiropractic: More Chiropractors, Less Opioids.
Based on data collected in 2011, a new study has found an association between both a higher per-capita supply of chiropractors and Medicare spending on chiropractic care and lower opioid prescription use among younger, disabled Medicare beneficiaries. Opioids are a type of narcotic pain medication that can have serious side effects and can lead to abuse and dependence. The finding suggests that chiropractic care may help reduce the need for this potentially dangerous class of medication.
Journal of Manipulative Physiological Therapeutics, March 2016

Wellness/Prevention: Earplugs Help Protect Hearing at Loud Concerts.
Earplugs can protect concert-goers from the temporary hearing loss that can linger after a high-decibel music concert. In this study, researchers followed 51 participants who attended an outdoor music festival, half of whom used earplugs. The average noise level during the festival was 100 decibels, which is known to pose a threat to hearing. After the event, 42% of those who did not wear earplugs experienced temporary hearing loss, compared with only 8% of those who had used them. Additionally, 40% of those who did not use earplugs reported post-concert tinnitus (ringing in the ears), while only 12% of ear plug users did so.
JAMA Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery, April 2016

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