~Thoughts for Thinking People~


Current Research and Thoughts You Can Use for Health and Healing
...And Which Verify The Wysong Optimal Health Program™

ANTIBIOTICS INCREASE BREAST CANCER RISK:  Women who take antibiotics for more than 500 days – or had more than 25 prescriptions – over an average period of 17 years have more than twice the risk of breast cancer as women who haven't taken any antibiotics.  Even women who have between one and 25 prescriptions are approximately 1.5 times more likely to be diagnosed with breast cancer. Researchers believe that antibiotics can affect bacteria in the intestine, which may impact how cancer-preventing foods are broken down in the body. Another hypothesis focuses on antibiotics' effects on the body's immune response and response to inflammation, which could also be related to the development of cancer.  (J Am Med Assoc, 2004; 291(7):827-35.)
ANTIOXIDANTS REDUCE ASTHMA RISK IN KIDS:   High levels of the antioxidants beta-carotene and vitamin C, along with the antioxidant trace mineral selenium, are associated with a lower risk of asthma in children.  The antioxidants have even stronger protection against asthma in subgroups of children exposed to passive smoke. (Am J Respir Crit Care Med, 2004; 169:393-8.)
EXERCISE PROTECTS THE BRAIN:  Being physically fit may be good for the aging brain, researchers report.  In a new study of older adults, higher levels of physical fitness were associated with improved mental abilities.  Even moderate physical activity, such as walking, may keep the brain in tip-top shape.  It is believed that exercise improves blood flow in the brain, encourages the formation of new neurons and increases the number of connections (synapses) that form between neurons.   (Proc Natl Acad Sci, Early Edition, February 16, 2004.)
GRAPEFRUIT TO LOSE WEIGHT:  Eating or drinking grapefruit, long recommended by diet programs for weight loss, may indeed impact the body’s insulin levels, speeding up metabolism and leading to weight loss, say researchers.  Study participants who ate a serving of the citrus fruit with each meal lost an average of 3.6 pounds, with some losing up to 10 pounds.  The researchers speculate that the chemical properties of grapefruit reduce insulin, which is known to help regulate fat metabolism and also plays a key role in diabetes. Lowering insulin levels also makes people feel less hungry, further explaining its link to weight loss. 
MODERATE-FAT INTAKE DECREASES CARDIO RISK:  Although low-fat diets are recommended for heart health, a moderate-fat weight loss diet has been found to reduce dieters' cardiovascular risk better than a low-fat diet.  And while the low-fat diet did reduce risk factors during the weight loss phase of the study to some degree, those factors rebounded during the maintenance phase.  Researchers concluded that markedly lowering total fat intakes may have adverse consequences on reductions in the risk of cardiovascular disease, even in response to weight loss. (Am J Clin Nutr, 2004; 79(2):204-12.)
OMEGA-3s & FOLIC ACID PREVENT HEART DISEASE IN WOMEN:  New guidelines to preventing heart disease in women, issued by the American Heart Association, recommend increasing intake of omega-3 fatty acids and taking folic acid supplements.  The guidelines are the first to be based on the specific needs of women. (Circulation, 2004; 109(6).)
REDUCE CALORIES, INCREASE LONGEVITY & HEALTH:  A 14-year study of canine diet and health has found that dogs fed a calorie-restricted diet live nearly 2 years longer (15%) than dogs allowed to eat more.  The calorie-restricted dogs in this study were also slower to develop chronic diseases such as osteoarthritis.  Further, positive changes in carbohydrate metabolism were seen in lean-fed dogs, compared to their littermates, which were associated with increased quality and quantity of life.  Dogs fed a calorie-restricted diet also tended to have lower blood pressure and improved immune function.  The findings add to the growing body of evidence that caloric restriction in a wide range of species significantly boosts longevity.
RITALIN™ MAY CAUSE BRAIN DAMAGE:  Children given Ritalin™ (methylphenidate) to control hyperactivity could be permanently brain damaged, according to scientists.  Research suggests the controversial drug raises the risk of depression and anxiety in adulthood.  U.S. scientists believe that Ritalin™ alters the brain's chemical composition so that it has a lasting effect on mental health, and that because these changes take place while a child's brain is growing, they could cause irreversible damage.  (Biological Psychiatry, 12/2003.)
Best of health to you and yours from all of us here at Wysong.