Recent posts

Is stress affecting our ability to tune into others? Evidence for gender differences in the effects of stress on self-other distinction

July 8, 2014

Stress is a ubiquitous challenge in society as we consistently interact with others under the influence of stress. Distinguishing self- from other-related mental representations plays an important role for social interactions, and is a prerequisite for crucial social skills such as action understanding, empathy, and mentalizing. Little is known, however, about the effects of stress…  read more

Plasma phospholipids identify antecedent memory impairment in older adults

June 30, 2014

Alzheimer’s disease causes a progressive dementia that currently affects over 35 million individuals worldwide and is expected to affect 115 million by 2050 (ref. 1). There are no cures or disease-modifying therapies, and this may be due to our inability to detect the disease before it has progressed to produce evident memory loss and functional decline….  read more

5 steps to preventing heart disease

June 24, 2014

The answer for most people isn’t drugs, but simple changes in the way you eat and exercise   The American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology caused a ruckus late last year when they issued new guidelines that, by some measures, would double the number of people who should take a cholesterol-lowering drug. Lost in…  read more

A plunge in U.S. preschool obesity? Not so fast, experts say

June 17, 2014

By Sharon Begley NEW YORK (Reuters) – If the news last month that the prevalence of obesity among American preschoolers had plunged 43 percent in a decade sounded too good to be true, that’s because it probably was, researchers say. When the study was published in late February in the Journal of the American Medical Association,…  read more

“Do Brain Workouts Work? Science Isn’t Sure” by Tara Parker-Pope.

May 28, 2014

For a $14.95 monthly membership, the website Lumosity promises to “train” your brain with games designed to stave off mental decline. While Lumosity is perhaps the best known of the brain-game websites, with 50 million subscribers in 180 countries, the cognitive training business is booming. Happy Neuron of Mountain View, Calif., promises “brain fitness for…  read more

Disruptions: Using Addictive Games to Build Better Brains

May 12, 2014

First it was Doodle Jump. Then Dots. And now — will it never end? — Flappy Bird. So many of the games that we download on our smartphones are a waste of time, but we can’t seem to stop playing them. My current high score on the late, lamented Flappy Bird is three. After weeks…  read more

Neurobehavioural effects of developmental toxicity

May 6, 2014

Neurodevelopmental disabilities, including autism, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, dyslexia, and other cognitive impairments, affect millions of children worldwide, and some diagnoses seem to be increasing in frequency. Industrial chemicals that injure the developing brain are among the known causes for this rise in prevalence. In 2006, we did a systematic review and identified five industrial chemicals…  read more

One in five older Americans take medications that work against each other

March 18, 2014

PORTLAND, Ore. – About three out of four older Americans have multiple chronic health conditions, and more than 20 percent of them are being treated with drugs that work at odds with each other – the medication being used for one condition can actually make the other condition worse. This approach of treating conditions “one…  read more

Why High-Impact Exercise Is Good for Your Bones

This article appeared in the March 9, 2014 issue of The New York Times Magazine. Bones should be jarred, for their own good. Past experiments have definitively established that subjecting bones to abrupt stress prompts them to add mass or at least reduces their loss of mass as people age. What has been in dispute,…  read more

Dark chocolate consumption improves leukocyte adhesion factors and vascular function in overweight men

March 4, 2014

Flavanol-enriched chocolate consumption increases endothelium-dependent vasodilation. Most research so far has focused on flow-mediated dilation (FMD) only; the effects on other factors relevant to endothelial health, such as inflammation and leukocyte adhesion, have hardly been addressed. We investigated whether consumption of regular dark chocolate also affects other markers of endothelial health, and whether chocolate enrichment…  read more

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