Weekly Health Update Week of: Monday, September 5th, 2016

“Fortune crowns the bold before the worthy.”
~ Agona Apell

Mental Attitude: Stressed Dads May Affect Their Kids’ Development.
When fathers are stressed out about parenting, it may take a toll on their children’s development. In a study that included 730 families, researchers found that sons were more likely to have poorer language skills at age three when their fathers had high levels of stress associated with parenting. Furthermore, both boys and girls of stressed fathers usually scored lower on tests of cognition. Dr. Michael Yogman, chair of the American Academy of Pediatrics’ Committee on Psychosocial Aspects of Child and Family Health adds, “This new study supports a wealth of research showing that fathers play an important role in their children’s cognitive and behavioral development.”
Infant and Child Development and Early Childhood Research Quarterly, July 2016

Health Alert: Americans Are Heavier Than 20 Years Ago.
According to a new report, the average American has put on about fifteen pounds (~6.8 kg) since the late 1980s and early 1990s. The authors of the report speculate the reasons behind the increase in weight are most likely related to tendencies toward less exercise and more access to high calorie foods. Dr. Anthony Comuzzie, an obesity researcher and scientist with the department of genetics at the Texas Biomedical Research Institute in San Antonio, says that the study reveals that Americans are still gaining weight at “a fairly rapid rate, and such an increase does not bode well for the overall health of the nation. The findings suggest there will likely be an associated increase in chronic diseases like type 2 diabetes and heart disease in the coming years.”
National Center for Health Statistics Report, August 2016

Diet: Omega-3s Helpful After a Heart Attack.
A heart attack can result in damage to the heart, which raises the risk of further heart-related problems. A new study suggests that this risk may be reduced with a daily dose of omega-3 fatty acids. In the study, 360 heart attack patients either took four grams of omega-3 fatty acids or a placebo for six months following their heart attack. The researchers found that participants who took omega-3 fatty acids experienced a 5.6% reduction in scarring of non-damaged heart muscle, as well as a 5.8% reduction in the left ventricular end-systolic volume index, which is an indicator of a patient’s outcome following a heart attack. Senior author Dr. Raymond Y. Kwong explains, “Our findings show that omega-3 fatty acids are a safe and effective treatment in improving cardiac remodeling, so it may be promising in reducing the incidence of heart failure or death, which are still major healthcare burdens to patients who suffer a heart attack.”
Circulation, July 2016

Exercise: Improves the Working Memory of Stroke Patients.
In this study, researchers found that post-stroke patients who engaged in moderate exercise for just 15 minutes experienced enhanced activity in their brain’s prefrontal cortex, resulting in improved working memory performance.
Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology, August 2016

Chiropractic: Musculoskeletal Pain Reduced By An Activity-Based Work Environment.
A recent study investigated the effect of an activity-based work (ABW) office environment on physical activity and sedentary behavior, work ability, and musculoskeletal discomfort. ABW is based on the premise that employees do not have an assigned workstation; instead, they are provided with a variety of predetermined activity areas that allow them to learn, focus, collaborate, and socialize. In the study, 88 office workers trialed ABW for four weeks, and at the end of the study, the researchers reported the workers spent less time sitting and more time standing and walking. The participants also reported less back pain following the four-week trial than they had in their more traditional work environment.
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, July 2016

Wellness/Prevention: Check Those Moles.
If you have a lot of moles on your body, you need to check your skin often for changes and warning signs associated with skin cancer. To accomplish this, the American Academy of Dermatology recommends the following: regularly inspect your skin, evaluate all of your moles; look for changes or unusual looking moles; see a dermatologist if any moles bleed, itch, or change; avoid sunbathing or use of a tanning bed; apply sunscreen when outdoors to help prevent sunburn; and see a dermatologist if you have 100 or more moles.
American Academy of Dermatology, August 2016

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