Want to Protect Your Brain? Start With Your Heart

In February, we are surrounded by hearts. They’re everywhere—in the grocery store, shopping malls and email inboxes. You may also hear more about heart health, because February is  American Heart Month. Taking steps to strengthen your heart yields a bonus—you’ll be protecting your brain as well. It turns out that heart and brain health are inexorably linked, according to a new Global Council on Brain Health (GCBH) report on brain health and nutrition. With every beat, the heart pumps 20 …

Bedtime Blood Pressure Meds May Help Prevent Diabetes

Sometimes it’s not just a matter of taking your medication, but also when you take it that’s paramount. That’s the surprising conclusion of a new study that found that taking your blood pressure pills at bedtime, rather than waiting until morning, can cut your risk of developing type 2 diabetes by more than half. Spanish researchers with the University of Vigo conducted two related studies, both published Sept. 23 in the journal Diabetologia, that tested the link between blood pressure …

Night Owls at Higher Risk for Diabetes, Health Problems

If you’re middle-aged and a night owl, you’re at a much higher risk for diabetes and other health problems than your early-riser friends — even if you’re getting the same amount of sleep as they are. A new study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism examined the health difference between what researchers call “evening and morning chronotypes” — people whose natural sleep-wake cycles make them either night owls or morning people. The aim was to see whether …

Recipe for Brain Health: Diet, Exercise, Brain Training

A large new study has confirmed what doctors have suspected for years: that embracing a healthy lifestyle can slow the rate of cognitive aging in older adults at risk of dementia. The study, published this week in the Lancet, found that a combination of a healthy diet, strength training, aerobic exercise, brain games and controlling blood pressure and weight slows mental decline in older people. For this study,  1,260 Finnish men and women between the ages of 60 and 77 who were at …

11 Things We Didn’t Know Last Week

News, discoveries and … fun 1. The world’s richest 1 percent will likely control half of global wealth by next year. (Learn more at NY Times) 2. A cup of blueberries a day can help lower blood pressure. (Learn more at AARP) 3. Four in ten people report at least one incident of “sleep paralysis” — waking up and being unable to move. (Learn more at Discovery) 4. The golden orb-web spider can count. (Learn more at WIRED) Share Your New Year’s Resolution …

Blueberries Can Help Lower Blood Pressure

Need to reduce your blood pressure several notches? Eating a cup of blueberries a day could help. That’s the conclusion of a small Florida State University study of postmenopausal women, ages 45 to 65, who ate the equivalent of a cup of blueberries a day for eight weeks. The women not only saw a modest improvement in their blood pressure readings, their arteries also showed improved flexibility, which also can help lower blood pressure. Previous blueberry studies had found similar …