Lack of Sleep Effects Could be Deadly

More and more research is showing that getting enough sleep, once considered an indulgence available to a fortunate few, is really quite vital for both our mental and physical well being, as lack of sleep effects can be deadly serious.

A pair of new studies suggest that chronic poor sleep boosts your odds of dying early, which is worrisome enough without the results of a third study that found more than half of older Americans aren’t getting the amount of sleep they need.

All three studies were presented at the June 10th session of the annual meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Society, SLEEP 2009, held this year in Seattle, Washington.

The first study, conducted by an association of experts, found that death rates were higher among those who had what’s known as fragmented sleep – more transitions between the known stages of sleep.

Over the 8 year study period, those with more fragmented sleep had a risk of death that was 5% higher than those who slept peacefully.

The two transitions most closely linked to increased death risk were the wake-to-non-REM and REM-to-wake shifts in sleeping stages.

Until this research, there had been little work in the area of sleep fragmentation, though one study found sleep-disordered breathing, a contributor to sleep fragmentation, brought an increased risk of premature death.

Still it’s impossible to tell what underlying conditions might be behind these types of sleep disturbances.

Those who are ill, for example, might have disturbed sleep patterns, but is this the cause of their problems, or the problems the case of the fragmented sleep?

The second study, conducted by the Penn State College of Medicine, looked at subjects with insomnia who slept less than 6 hours and found they were at an increased risk of death compared to those who slept longer.

The work involved almost 2,000 men and women who were first examined in a sleep lab and then followed for over a decade.

Here’s what they found – males with insomnia who slept from 5-6 hours a night had five times the risk of death as opposed to those who slept 6 (or more) hours each night.

Women with insomnia also had a higher risk, though the numbers didn’t reach a statistically significant level.

Earlier work in this area has linked less sleep with health conditions such as high blood pressure, as well as other risk factors for cardiovascular disease.

The third and final study presented at SLEEP 2009 comes from the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, and was based on a survey of more than 1,500 adults over 60.

This work found that less than half the adults in this age group are getting the recommended eight hours of sleep each night. Only 61% reported it took them less than 15 minutes to fall to sleep.

Subjects who had depressive symptoms, were unmarried, black more educated or earned more experienced poorer sleep, reporting that they felt less alert during the day.

While medications to treat insomnia are sometimes an option, better, more effective results come from cognitive behavioral therapy – helping patients to recognize what’s really keeping them from sleep and develop strategies to deal with these stressors.

Continues below…


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- Ease all your niggling aches and pains
- Give your body an internal overhaul, increasing health and wellbeing…

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A Trio Of Studies Show Just How Vital A Good Night’s Sleep Can Be continued

Relaxation techniques can also be helpful for getting people to relax enough to go to sleep, or return to sleep if they wake during the night.

The largest population based study on sleep finds 6 to 8 hours a night seems to help people live the longest.

If you find that you’re having trouble getting enough sleep, mention this to your doctor so that other health problems or side effects from medications you take might be ruled out first.

You’ll also want to make an effort to establish a healthy sleeping routine, choose a comfortable, sleep-inducing location, and practice relaxation techniques to help you ease into a relaxed, restful, ready for sleep state to avoid those worrisome lack of sleep effects.

To your good health,

Kirsten Whittaker
Daily Health Bulletin Editor

Improving Your Odds In The Fight Against Heart Disease Risks

When it comes to increasing the size of the heart’s left ventricle (the heart’s main pumping chamber), smoking, high blood pressure, excess weight and diabetes are major contributing factors to heart disease risks.

Doctor’s will tell you that if the mass of this area of the heart increases it’s a worrisome indicator that heart failure may follow.

Knowing the risks, and taking steps to minimize the ones you can a smart way to keep your heart going strong.

Researchers led by Ramachandran S. Vasan, MD, chief of the section of preventive medicine at Boston University School of Medicine and colleagues analyzed data from the Framingham Offspring Study, where participants were the children and spouses of children of Framingham Heart Study participants.

The original research was a first of its kind with observational and data gathering effort beginning in 1948 and centered on those living in Framingham, MA.

For the current analysis, appearing in the June 2009 issue of Circulation, Journal of the American Heart Association, 2,605 of the Framingham offspring were used and had checkups as far back as the 1970s, as well as exams through the late 1990s that included four routine echocardiographic observations.

Just over half (53%) of the subjects were women – the average age of participants was 45 years old.

“People with fewer risk factors had almost no increase in [left ventricular] mass with age,” explains Vasan. “People who had more risk factors had a steeper increase in [left ventricular] mass with age.”

Women showed a greater risk of left ventricular mass increase as they aged.

Those with diabetes, especially if they were female, displayed a very steep increase in muscle thickening over time.

Clearly the one-two punch of being female and diabetic is troublesome. Participants who did not have any of the four risk factors – didn’t smoke, weren’t diabetic or obese and didn’t have high blood pressure – saw less increase in ventricular mass over the same time period.

In a related study, also appearing in June 2009′s Circulation, Journal of the American Heart Association, researcher Vasan, Michael J. Pencina, Ph.D. and colleagues devised a sort of calculator to come up with an adults’ 30-year risk of experiencing a heart attack or stroke, as well as the risk of dying from these events.

They looked at data from 4,506 participants in the Framingham Offspring Study, aged 20 to 59 years old – free of cardiovascular disease and cancer at the start of the research.

They then worked to develop a predictive algorithm for the 30-year risk. They found that on average a woman had a 7.6% 30-year risk of becoming the victim of a heart attack or stroke, compared to 18.3% for a man.

And while extra pounds weren’t a statistically significant indicator in the short term, that changed over the long haul, 30-year outlook. Added weight, over time, brings added risk.

Continues below…


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This Doctor Dropped 10 Sizes – Discover Her Shocking Secret

There’s an overwhelming body of research that shows most diets aren’t effective in the long term because they work AGAINST the body…

In fact most people who diet end up putting ON more weight than when they started.

It’s because most diets deprive you of the foods you enjoy, stop you getting the nutrients you need…basically forcing your body into ‘starvation mode’…

Joy Siegrist MD developed a diet that works WITH your body…one that has a 96% success rate.

And to prove it she used it to drop 10 dress sizes.

Click through now to discover how Dr Joy dropped 10 dress sizes…


Improving Your Odds In The Fight Against Heart Failure continued

The calculation is intended to allow a doctor to enter in certain data about a patient and get a 30-year risk estimate for chances of heart attack or stroke.

Dr. Pencina, an associate professor of biostatistics also out of Boston University says, “My hope would be that we can increase awareness of cardiovascular risk in younger people who may have lower 10-year risks but higher 30-year risks, and encourage them to take steps to maintain optimal levels of their risk factors.”

If you’re concerned about heart failure, addressing the risk factors you can control – things like smoking and keeping your weight under control are important first steps.

Doing all you can to keep your body healthy is also important to preventing conditions like diabetes and high blood pressure.

Healthier living, and a healthier heart starts with you – all you have to do is get started and reduce your heart disease risks today.

To your good health,

Kirsten Whittaker
Daily Health Bulletin Editor

Sipping And Savoring Red Wine Health Benefits

While drinking alcohol to excess leads to health problems in multiple organ systems, you’ve probably also heard of red wine health benefits when drunk in moderation.

Long standing research backs up the benefits, but until now researchers couldn’t explain precisely how this might work.

“Reports on the benefits of red wine are almost two centuries old,” points out Lindsay Brown, associate professor in the School of Biomedical Sciences at The University of Queensland.

“The media developed the more recent story of the French paradox in the early 1990s. However, studies on the actions of resveratrol, one of the active non-alcoholic ingredients, were uncommon until research around 1997 showed prevention of cancers. This led to a dramatic interest in this compound.”

Not surprisingly, red wine brings together a complicated mix of antioxidants and other compounds, one of which is a polyphenol known as resveratrol that is showing itself to have some amazing disease prevention abilities.

The health benefits of this substance are certainly impressive, everything from preventing cancer to protecting the brain and heart from damage and age-related diseases, reversing diabetes, reducing “bad” cholesterol, preventing blood clots, obesity and more.

But by far the most fascinating tidbit is the way the body gets the beneficial compounds.

It appears that absorption of resveratrol through the mucous membranes in the mouth results in around 100 times the blood levels of the compound than a drinker would get via the digestive system and liver.

These body systems inactivate this helpful substance, so those gulped down glasses don’t deliver the resveratrol to the bloodstream.

Sips that are slow and savoring work far better allowing the absorption of this oh-so-beneficial compound.

Though it sounds complex and convoluted, experts have found that high doses of resveratrol increase a process called apoptosis (programmed cell death); while lower doses are thought to improve cardiac health by preventing cell damage.

A likely explanation for this level dependent effect is that smaller concentrations of the compound activate cell survival mechanisms, while high concentrations turn on built in death signals in those same cells.

The compound might also help maintain health by removing very reactive oxidants in the body while aiding the supply of blood to cells.

“The simplest explanation is that resveratrol turns on the cell’s own survival pathways, preventing damage to individual cells,” explains study author Brown. “Further mechanisms help, including removing very reactive oxidants in the body and improving blood supply to cells.”

Continues below…


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Why Sipping And Savoring Red Wine Is Good For You continued

If red wine isn’t your thing, experts suggest that by eating a couple of servings of blueberries (or red grapes, purple grape juice, peanuts or some berries) a day from now on you may well get the same benefit.

You might also have heard about resveratrol in the news or on recent 60 Minutes reports, but be wary of supplement claims that use footage from the report, or cite an endorsement of Oprah Winfrey’s medical expert, Mehmel Oz, M.D. Dr. Oz hasn’t endorsed any product.

The work on resveratrol and red wine health benefits is set to appear in the September 2009 issue of Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research and was funded by the National Institutes of Health and the Dietmar Hopp Foundation.

To your good health,

Kirsten Whittaker
Daily Health Bulletin Editor

Ten Of The Least Suspected Sources Of UV Skin Damage

While we all know time spent baking on a beach without sunscreen is not a good idea, there are other, more routine things we all do that can be just as damaging to our skin and lead to UV skin damage.

Since skin cancers account for just about half of all cancers in the U.S. according to American Cancer Society numbers, making some simple changes in your behavior this summer, and from now on, could help you beat the odds.

Here are ten surprising things we all do that put our skin at risk:

1. Driving without sunscreen – the glass in your car windows and sunroof doesn’t block UVA rays that cause damage to all types of skin.

2. Sitting in the shade without sunscreen – damaging UV rays bounce off water and sand, even into shady spots.

3. Using old sunscreen - if it’s from 1-3 years old, you need to replace it, then mark the purchase date on your new bottle, so you’ll know when to get rid of what’s left. Also, don’t store sunscreen in the car as the heat can cause the ingredients to separate and oxidize.

4. Not applying sunscreen often enough - most of us use only 25-50% of the recommended amount. For sunscreen to work, you need to use the right amount, which is about a shot glass full, applied all over your body and rubbed in well. Reapply after 2-3 hours, or when you come out of the water or are doing heavy work or exercise that makes you sweat a lot.

5. Not wearing sunscreen on a cloudy day - UVA rays penetrate clouds more readily on these overcast days than UVB rays do, so while you might not feel the heat or see the sun, days with cloud cover aren’t without risk of sunburn or other damaging, aging affects.

6. Expecting protection from a “base” tan - a study published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology found exposure to UV rays during indoor tanning is harmful to eyes as well as skin cell DNA, leading to premature aging.

7. Using water-resistant when you need waterproof - there’s a big difference (40 minutes of sun protection for water-resistant; 80 minutes of sun protection for waterproof) between the two formulas. Still no matter which you choose you need to re-apply after time in the water

8. Not protecting your head with a hat – to cover your head, the tops of your ears and neck area (or any thinning spots up top) that aren’t normally exposed to the sun, or protected with sunscreen.

9. Relying on regular clothing as protection – some manufacturers have created new items made from Ultraviolet Protective Factor (UPF) that offers 97.5% protection from the sun. By contrast, a white tee offers an SPF of 7/8 if dry, but only 3 when wet.

10. Taking medications like certain antibiotics or antihistamines – these drugs increase your skin’s sensitivity to the sun, causing sunburn that can be rather severe. Anyone taking these medications should stay out of the sun, wear (and avidly re-apply) sunscreen and remain indoors as much as possible.

The best way to protect yourself from skin damage, besides watching out for these ten little-known hazards, is to wear a sunscreen of at least SPF 15 that will bring you 95% protection.

Continues below…


*Highly Recommended*

This Doctor Dropped 10 Sizes – Discover Her Shocking Secret

There’s an overwhelming body of research that shows most diets aren’t effective in the long term because they work AGAINST the body…

In fact most people who diet end up putting ON more weight than when they started.

It’s because most diets deprive you of the foods you enjoy, stop you getting the nutrients you need…basically forcing your body into ‘starvation mode’…

Joy Siegrist MD developed a diet that works WITH your body…one that has a 96% success rate.

And to prove it she used it to drop 10 dress sizes.

Click through now to discover how Dr Joy dropped 10 dress sizes…


Ten Of The Least Suspected Sources Of Skin Damage continued

Sunscreen is the best thing you can do to protect your skin, but remember the number on the bottle doesn’t mean you’re that many times safer, it simply means you’d burn that many times sooner without product.

Higher SPF’s bring incrementally more protection, but not even SPF 50 gets you to 100%. Re-applying rigorously with a lower SPF is just as protective as using a higher number less vigilantly.

And since SPF only refers to the protection against UVB rays, the FDA has taken its time developing new labeling guidelines for sunscreen manufacturers.

These products will soon be sporting a 4 star UVA rating (low, medium, high or highest), though the companies have a year to 18 months to implement the changes once put in place.

While you’re waiting, look for at least one of these UVA protective ingredients – avobenzone, oxybenzone, titanium dioxide, zinc oxide, or ecamsule in any sun protection product you buy to help avoid UV skin damage.

To your good health,

Kirsten Whittaker
Daily Health Bulletin Editor

Not Eating Breakfast Leaves Your Brain Craving High Calorie Foods

You may have already heard that not eating breakfast, often called the most important meal of the day, isn’t a good idea if you’re trying to lose weight.

But in the rush to get out the door in the morning, many of us just don’t have the time, even though studies have shown those who eat breakfast stay slimmer and consume fewer calories during the course of a day.

Now new research has hit upon the explanation.

A team out of Imperial College presented their findings at the 91st annual meeting of the Endocrine Society, held this year in Washington, D.C.

The work involved 20 healthy, non-obese subjects who skipped breakfast before a fMRI scan.

During the test, the subjects looked at photos of both high and low calorie foods. High calorie choices included pizza, chocolate and cake. The low calorie foods were things like veggies, salad and fish.

Using scans known as function magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) that help doctors look at blood flow in the brain and how it increases in response to brain activity, the researchers were able to compare how breakfast eating vs. breakfast skipping affected the reward center of the brain.

The reward center is known to be a part of the brain involved in keeping track of the pleasure and reward that comes from food, as well as igniting the motivation to eat. The taste, smell and sight of food also serve to activate these reward centers.

What the team found was that the reward center of the brain of the breakfast skippers lit up more vividly when these subjects saw a high calorie food as opposed when they were looking at a healthier alternative.

High calorie foods also were on top of the list of favorites the breakfast skipping subjects listed when asked to rank foods they found most appealing.

Just the opposite was true when it came to the subjects who ate breakfast first, then had the fMRI 90 minutes later.

This time, the reward center of the brain didn’t show any greater activity at the sight of the high calorie foods as when looking at the low calorie ones. What’s more, the subjects didn’t rate the higher calorie foods any more appealing than the lower calorie ones.

“Our results support the advice for eating a healthy breakfast as part of the dietary prevention and treatment of obesity,” says Tony Goldstone, MD, PhD, a consultant endocrinologist with the MRC Clinical Sciences Centre at Imperial College, London.

“When people skip meals, especially breakfast, changes in brain activity in response to food may hinder weight loss and even promote weight gain.”

Skipping breakfast causes your metabolic rate to slow down while your blood sugar also drops.

This brings on feelings of hunger that set you up for impulse eating later on in the morning, at lunch or dinner.

Eating breakfast at the start of your day gives the body the fuel it needs to feel satisfied, so that you’re less likely to overeat, or eat on impulse for the rest of the day.

Continues below…


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- Have all your friends compliment you on looking years younger
- Ease all your niggling aches and pains
- Give your body an internal overhaul, increasing health and wellbeing…

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Click through today to discover the fat loss and detox system that celebrities like Beyonce, David Blaine and Robin Quivers rely on


Skipping Breakfast Leaves Your Brain Craving High Calorie Foods continued

Here are some quick-to-make, healthy breakfast suggestions to try:

- Milk and whole-grain cereal
- Instant oatmeal topped with raisins and milk
- Whole-grain granola topped with fruit and yogurt
- Peanut butter on whole-wheat toast or a bagel
- Fruit smoothie made with yogurt
- Cheese and whole-grain crackers
- Energy bars so long as you read the labels – some of these have little fiber and as many calories as a candy bar.

Future studies in this area might even uncover ways to prevent the activation of the brain’s reward center so that high calorie choices don’t seem so appealing.

In the meantime, if you’re trying to lose weight or just keep your weight under control not eating breakfast is not an option, as a healthy breakfast including natural sources of protein will help you feel fuller, longer.

To your good health,

Kirsten Whittaker
Daily Health Bulletin Editor

Importance of Sleep Highlighted in Preservation of Important Memories

More and more of us are coming to understand the importance of sleep; that it is as essential to our bodies as food and water.Now there’s even more reason to be sure and get a good night’s sleep.

Data that comes from a group of 44 college students showed that when sleep came after a period of learning, it preserved the most vital memories for as long as four months.

These findings were presented at SLEEP 2009, the 23rd Annual Meeting of the Associated Professional Sleep Societies, held this year in Seattle, Washington.

The event brings together 6,000 researchers and clinicians in the area of sleep medicine to discuss the latest findings and developments in sleep medicine.

Where once sleep was thought of as a passive activity, experts now know that our brains are very active during these periods and suggest we think of sleep as a time of memory consolidation.

The sleeping brain decides what’s most important about a memory and chooses the best of these for long-term storage.

Sleep appears to preserve memories that are important emotionally or are considered relevant to future goals.

“It may be that the chemical and physiological aspects of sleep underlying memory consolidation are more effective if a particular memory is ‘tagged’ shortly prior to sleeping,” explains study author Jessica Payne who is a postdoctoral fellow in psychology at Harvard Medical School.

The work had the subjects, all between the ages of 18 and 22, look at scenes with neutral or negative objects on a neutral background, and then tested them on their memory for the objects and backgrounds 24 hours later.

In a classic “early bird” vs. “night owl” split, half the subjects were assigned to a “sleep first” group, which trained and tested on scenes between 7:00-9:00PM; the rest of the subjects were assigned to the “wake first” group, training and testing on the scenes from 9:00-11:00 AM.

Four months later, the subjects were once again tested on their memory of the scenes.

Negative objects were remembered better in the sleep first group, but backgrounds associated with the negative objects were more poorly remembered in the sleep first group.

This pattern was evident four months later, with the objects tied to emotions being retained only for the sleep first group.

Payne suggests that we remember best when we stagger learning over time. And while the amount of sleep everyone needs is different, teens usually need about 9 hours, adults 7-8 hours, this can vary from as few as 5 to as many as 10 hours a night to truly feel rested.

If you’re sleep deprived, you create a “sleep debt” where your body will eventually demand that you make up the sleep you’ve missed.

You’ll also have to deal with impairments in your judgment, reaction times and other mental functions that come from lack of sleep. Studies have shown performance when sleep deprived is even worse than being intoxicated.

Continues below…


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WARNING: The truth about Moles, Warts and Skintags…

There are so many “scare” stories that it’s sometimes hard to know what to believe. Which is why this is so timely…

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Sleep Might Help Preserve Important Memories continued

Signs that you’re too tired to drive according to the National Sleep Foundation are:

- You’re having trouble keeping your eyes focused
- You can’t stop yawning
- You can’t remember driving the last few miles

If you find yourself feeling drowsy during the day, even during mundane, boring activities or meetings, experts believe that you haven’t gotten enough sleep.

And with our burn the candle at both ends world, it’s no wonder. If you tend to fall right to sleep (within 5 minutes) of lying down, you may be severely sleep deprived and need to catch up on your rest, for the sake of your own health, as well as all those around you it’s vital not to underestimate the importance of sleep.
To your good health,

Kirsten Whittaker
Daily Health Bulletin Editor

Increasing Fish Oil Dosage Slows Progression Of Eye Disease

If you have age related macular degeneration (AMD) you need to increase your fish oil dosage by eating oily fish at least two times a week to keep your eye disease in check according to new research conducted by a team at Tufts University in Boston.

It’s the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish like mackerel or salmon that slow (maybe even halt) the progress of both the early and later stages of the sight stealing disease.

In the United Kingdom a half a million people suffer from AMD. In the United Sates, estimates suggest 1.75 million patients have the advanced form of AMD, and another 7.3 million are in the early stages of disease.

The conclusions of this new work is based on research that involved about 3,000 subjects who took part in a trial on vitamins and supplements. The work appears in the June 2009 British Journal of Ophthalmology.

Experts have already told us that omega-3s might cut the risk of developing AMD by one third. This new work shows that these healthy fats might actually help people who’ve already been diagnosed.

The research showed that both the dry and wet forms of AMD were 25% less likely to progress in those subjects who ate sufficient omega-3 fatty acids.

The research suggests eating two to three (but no more than 4) servings of fish such as salmon, tuna, mackerel, shellfish or herring each week to get the recommended levels of 650mg of omega-3 a day.

Girls and women of childbearing age, or those who are pregnant or breastfeeding, need to limit fish intake to two portions per week.

As with many good things, too much oily fish can be harmful as many of these fish contain low levels of pollutants that can be just as bad for your body in the long run.

When it comes to vitamins and supplements and AMD, the Tufts study found those with advanced disease who ate a low-GI diet that consisted of foods that release sugar more slowly, and who also took supplemental antioxidant vitamins and minerals like vitamin C and zinc seemed to cut the risk of disease progression by even more – as much as 50%.

Another finding of the work?

Age related macular degeneration that’s advanced might be cut by about 8% just by substituting five slices of whole grain bread for white bread.

The surprise of the Tufts study came in the finding that the supplements were counterproductive for subjects who had early AMD, even canceling out the benefits of the healthy omega-3 fats and possibly even increasing the speed of their disease progression.

Those who took antioxidant vitamins plus zinc, and who had a high daily intake of beta-carotene were 50% more likely to progress to advanced disease.

The Tufts University researchers think that omega-3 fatty acids provide protection from AMD by altering the fat levels in the blood after a meal that otherwise might be damaging to the body.

Continues below…


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Announcing: Doctor Approved Store Cupboard Remedies that Really Work…

Do you buy over the counter drugs?

Stop right now and don’t waste any more money.

Did you know that you can easily treat illness without side effects, using only natural herbs, vitamins and nutrients?

Charles Silverman N.D. Certified Naturopathic and Herbalist Doctor has taken his 18 years research and experience and condensed it into a home remedy encyclopeida of the most powerful, and more importantly proven, home remedies.

You can eliminate the Flu virus, boost your immune system, and recover faster from colds using these doctor-approved home remedies…

As well as sleep better, look younger and treat any skin problem with your own skin care home remedies and recipes.

Click through now to discover the “hidden” kitchen cupboard cures – proven by clinical trials…


Study Finds Oily Fish Slows Progression Of Eye Disease continued

It’s not clear if people should also take vitamin and mineral supplements with a high omega-3 diet because of the mixed findings of the work. But supplements are not required if oily fish is consumed on a regular basis.

The good news is that this isn’t the first study to suggest that omega-3 fatty acids might help to safeguard vision. Researchers from locations as far flung as Iceland and the Netherlands, as well as the U.S. seem to agree that omega-3 fatty acids have an impact on AMD.

If you have questions or concerns for your own sight, talk with your doctor before making any change to your diet, increasing your fish oil dosage or adding supplements.

To your good health,

Kirsten Whittaker
Daily Health Bulletin Editor

One of the Secrets of Longevity Could be a Life Purpose

It doesn’t matter what that purpose is, lofty or more mundane, just having a life purpose that you’re working to achieve impacts how long older adults live according to new research, giving answers to one of the secrets of longevity.The work appears in Psychosomatic Medicine, and was completed by team out of Rush University Medical Center.

“It can be anything – from wanting to accomplish a goal in life, to achieving something in a volunteer organization, to as little as reading a series of books,” confirms study author Dr. Patricia Boyle, a neuropsychologist at the Rush Alzheimer’s Disease Center, as well as assistant professor of behavioral sciences at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago.

The intriguing study involved 1,238 community dwelling older adults who were already taking part in two ongoing research projects (known as the Rush Memory and Aging Project started in 1997, and the Minority Aging Research Study started in 2004) at Rush.

Dementia free at the start of the study, the average age of the participants was 78, and they were all asked to answer questions about their purpose in life.

At the start of the research participants rated themselves in different areas that were meant to measure the tendency to find meaning from life and the ability to work toward a goal.

The average score was 3.7 (out of a possible 5.0) on the sense of purpose evaluation.

In a follow up period that lasted up to five years, the researchers found that those who reported a greater level of purpose in life were about half as likely to die during the follow up as those who reported a lower level of purpose.

Even after factoring for things like depression, chronic medical conditions or disability, as well as age, sex, education and race, life purpose was still a factor in living longer.

“What this is saying is, if you find purpose in life, if you find your life is meaningful and if you have goal-directed behavior, you are likely to live longer.”

Study lead Dr. Patricia Boyle, believes this work is the first large-scale investigation to look at the link between life purpose and longevity.

Earlier work has shown that having a purpose in life is important to maintaining psychological wellness, as well as being important to physical health as well.

This follows up another study that found that retirees over 65 who carry out volunteer work had less than half the risk of dying during the four year follow up than those who did not give of their time.

You can learn more about the benefits of volunteering by checking out the website for the U.S. Corporation for National and community Service. Some of the best benefits of volunteering include…

- Meeting new people.
- Feeling needed and valued
- Sharing your skills and learning new ones
- Experiencing something new
- Contributing to a cause you care about

Continues below…


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Professional Trainer (CPT) Reveals Truth About Quick Fat Loss…

Have you ever dreamt about hiring a personal trainer? Just think of the results you’d achieve! Well, now you can have access to your own PT at no cost.

Mike Geary, a Certified Nutrition Specialist and Certified Personal Trainer (CPT), has blown the lid off the ‘Professional’ health industry and released a no-cost “no-gimick” insiders report which reveals the explosive truth about fat loss…

And he’s giving his insider report away today – you can get your copy here at Lean Body Fitness Secret


New Study Shows Having Life Purpose Improves Longevity continued

While this study on life purpose and longevity can’t with absolute certainty show that a sense of purpose is tied to longevity, the evidence is strong.

In the future, Boyle and her team hope to see if the secrets of longevity will work by inspiring older people to find a purpose in life… maybe by learning to set goals and then work toward achieving them.
To your good health,

Kirsten Whittaker
Daily Health Bulletin Editor

Eating More Food Could Be Key To Losing Weight

Pasta, boiled rice, most soups, stews, baked beans, porridge made with water, bran flakes with skimmed milk, low fat yogurt, fruits and veggies – eating more food like these water-rich foods help you feel full for longer, which is a huge plus when you’re trying to limit between meal snacking or watch your weight.

In fact, eating these foods may just be the simple, all natural secret to losing weight.

These lower energy density foods provide less energy per gram of food, so you can eat a larger volume without taking in too many calories.

Despite what you may have heard, you can’t get the feeling-fuller-for-longer effect by downing a glass of water with your meal – instead the liquid has to be a key part of the food itself or used in its preparation according to scientists at the British Nutrition Foundation.

The trick, when it comes to watching your weight, is to choose foods low in energy density (less than 1.5 calories per gram) to make up most of your meals.

To find the energy density of any food, divide the number of calories by the weight of the food. For example a 180g sandwich that has 360 calories has an energy density of 2 calories per gram.

Here’s how the energy density categories break down…

- Very low energy density foods = less than 0.6 calories/gram

- Low energy density foods = 0.6 to 1.5 calories/gram

- Medium energy density foods = 1.5 to 4 calories/gram, that sandwich we mentioned earlier would be here

- High energy density foods = more than 4 calories/gram

When you think low energy density foods, think baked beans, boiled eggs or veggie stir-fry with noodles. Cucumbers and strawberries are other good, water rich food sources.

Medium energy density foods include lasagna, pizza, steak and salmon and can certainly be eaten in moderation, so long as you watch your portion sizes.

High energy density foods like crackers, biscuits, crisps, peanuts and chocolate are the choices you eat sparingly, if at all.

The reason low energy density foods keep you feeling fuller is that they have a higher water content and so empty more slowly from the stomach than a solid food on its own. Pumping food with air might also help you feel fuller longer.

Of course a healthy, balanced diet includes foods from all the major food groups including whole grain cereals and breads, lean cuts of meat and fish, as well as other low fat foods.

A good rule of thumb for weight loss?

When you look at your plate, veggies (or other lower in energy items) should take the majority of the space – at least two thirds.

Earlier work in this area has shown that people tend to take in about the same amount of food every day, but we don’t consume the same number of calories every day.

What this means to weight loss is that we can keep the weight of our food the same yet lower the number of calories by replacing high energy density foods with lower energy density foods.

Continues below…


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Foods High In Water Could Be Key To Losing Weight continued

To get more low energy density foods in your diet isn’t as hard as you might think, There are recipes for these dishes online, or you can make changes to your own favorites that will help them be healthier and still just as tasty.

When it comes to deserts, consider a chocolate mousse instead of a couple of pieces of hard chocolate.

Eating more food like mixed berries with low fat yogurt, oat cereal and a small dash of honey give you more of a delicious treat to enjoy… and will satisfy your urge for something sweet without all the calories.

To your good health,

Kirsten Whittaker
Daily Health Bulletin Editor

Why Sleep Is Good Advice For Your Problem Solving Process

Want to boost your creative prowess? Research has found that an hour-long nap may be just the thing to help enhance your creative problem solving process – especially if that rest period includes a period of REM (rapid eye movement) sleep when most dreams happen.

This work on sleeping and creativity has just been published in the proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The study, out of the University of California San Diego, involved 77 volunteers who were presented with creative problems to solve and told to think about the problem until that afternoon.

They could rest but stay awake, or take a nap under the watchful eye of the researchers.

The team found that REM sleep brought an improved ability to solve problems that was almost 40% better than subjects who had rested quietly but didn’t reach the REM stage of sleep.

Before you dismiss a nap as fit only for babies or as an impossible luxury, consider the benefits of napping identified by researchers.

Naps…
- Improve memory and mood
- Boost creativity
- Enhance accuracy

Cut your caffeine intake as naps work better than a small coffee for maintaining alertness

It seems the quality of the sleep is more important to problem solving than the length of time a subject slept or even the sleep itself.

Lead researcher Professor Sara Mednick, a faculty member in the department of psychiatry at the UCSD School of Medicine, has been researching napping since graduate school and just published a book titled “Take a Nap! Change Your Life.”

She explains: “We found that, for creative problems you’ve already been working on, the passage of time is enough to find solutions. However for new problems, only REM sleep enhances creativity.”

Experts believe that during REM sleep the brain is better able to form new nerve connections without the interference of other thoughts – which happens when we’re awake or in non-REM stages of sleep. This paper confirms the importance of this stage of sleep, when most of our dreaming occurs.

What’s troubling is that the National Sleep Foundation reports that as many as 40% of Americans sleep less than 7 hours a night – though generally eight hours a night is what’s recommended. Two thirds of women report trouble sleeping more than three nights a week.

Each year, on the Monday following the “spring forward” of Daylight Savings Time, the sleep deprived everywhere celebrate National Napping Day.

Started back in 1999 by a Boston University professor and his wife, the day is set aside to help us all adjust to losing that hour of sleep over the weekend.

Experts note that after the time change, the number of car accidents, suicides and heart attacks goes up. Over the long haul, lack of sleep is thought to lead to an increased risk of heart disease, hypertension, diabetes, depression and obesity.

According to Mednick, those who nap and get a good night’s sleep to boot have the ability to learn twice as much as those who only get a good night’s sleep.

Continues below…


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“Just Sleep On It” Good Advice For Problem Solving continued

Another surprising thing about napping… not everyone needs to nap at the same time of day. Teens and young adults make the most effective use of late afternoon, around 4:00 PM, naps.

The best period for adult naps is sometime between 1:00-3:00 PM.

If you find that your nighttime sleep isn’t what it should be, consider adding a short nap to your routine to help you feel more well rested, and perhaps improve your creative problem solving process too.

To your good health,

Kirsten Whittaker
Daily Health Bulletin Editor