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Exercise may protect against Alzheimer's disease: Study – Times Now

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Exercise play an important role against Alzheimer: Study(Representational image)&nbsp | &nbspPhoto Credit:&nbspGetty Images

New York: Exercise produces a hormone that may improve memory and protect against Alzheimer’s disease, according to a study. Researchers have previously discovered a hormone called irisin that is released into the circulation during physical activity. Initial studies suggested that irisin mainly played a role in energy metabolism.

The latest study, published in the journal Nature Medicine, found that the hormone may also promote neuronal growth in the brain’s hippocampus, a region critical for learning and memory.”This raised the possibility that may help explain why physical activity improves memory and seems to play a protective role in brain disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease,” said Ottavio Arancio, a professor at Columbia University in the US.

Arancio and his colleagues at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil and Queens University in Canada first looked for a link between irisin and Alzheimer’s in people. Using tissue samples from brain banks, they found that irisin is present in the human hippocampus and that hippocampal levels of the hormone are reduced in individuals with Alzheimer’s.

To explore what irisin does in the brain, the team turned to mice. These experiments show that irisin, in mice, protects the brain’s synapses and the animals’ memory: When irisin was disabled in the hippocampus of healthy mice, synapses and memory weakened. Similarly, boosting brain levels of irisin improved both measures of brain health, researchers said.

The researchers then looked at the effect of exercise on irisin and the brain. They found that mice who swam nearly every day for five weeks did not develop memory impairment despite getting infusions of beta-amyloid — the neuron-clogging, memory-robbing protein implicated in Alzheimer’s.

Blocking irisin with a drug completely eliminated the benefits of swimming, the researchers found. Mice who swam and were treated with irisin-blocking substances performed no better on memory tests than sedentary animals after infusions with beta-amyloid.

The findings suggest that irisin could be exploited to find a novel therapy for preventing or treating dementia in humans, Arancio said. The team is now searching for pharmaceutical compounds that can increase brain levels of the hormone or can mimic its action.

“In the meantime, I would certainly encourage everyone to exercise, to promote brain function and overall health,” he said.”But that’s not possible for many people, especially those with age-related conditions like heart disease, arthritis, or dementia. For those individuals, there is a particular need for drugs that can mimic the effects of irisin and protect synapses and prevent cognitive decline,” Arancio said

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Cutting out on these foods can help combat gastrointestinal issues – Times Now

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Cutting out on these foods can help combat gastrointestinal issues (Representational Image)&nbsp | &nbspPhoto Credit:&nbspGetty Images

London: Cutting out specific foods can alleviate gastrointestinal issues for physically active people, especially a runner, researchers say. The study, conducted by researchers from the Anglia Ruskin University in Britain, showed that a low fermentable oligosaccharide, disaccharide, monosaccharide and polyol (or FODMAP) diet reduces some of the issues caused by exercise such as stomach cramps and bloating, and improves a person’s perceived ability to exercise.

FODMAP foods include those containing lactose (milk, yoghurt and cheese), fructans (found in cereals, bread and pasta), galactic-oligosaccharides (legumes and onions), excess fructose (for example in apples, pears and asparagus) and polyols (often added as a food additive).

“We found a clear benefit when following the low FODMAP diet, with a reduction in exercise-related gastrointestinal symptoms amongst otherwise healthy, recreational runners,” said Justin Roberts, Principal Lecturer at the varsity.

For the study, the researchers involved a group of healthy recreational exercisers.  Everyone in the group followed two eating plans for one week at a time, with the key difference being the FODMAP content.

The findings, published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, found that 69 per cent of those following a low FODMAP diet experienced an improvement in symptoms and were able to exercise more frequently and at a higher intensity.

In addition, the improvement in perceived pain, in conjunction with reduced experiences of bloating whilst on a low FODMAP diet, is likely explained by a reduction in intestinal water volume and gas production, caused by fewer indigestible carbohydrates available for fermentation in the gut.

However, further studies are needed to examine the benefits of this diet when combined with long-term training strategies. It is important that people take care if deciding to follow a low FODMAP diet, as reductions in total caloric and carbohydrate intake may impact on nutritional quality, Roberts suggested.
 

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New technique to measure blood clot developed: Details inside – Times Now

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New technique to measure blood clot developed (Representational Image)&nbsp | &nbspPhoto Credit:&nbspGetty Images

London: Scientists have developed a new technique that allows them to measure blood clotting as well as the formation of free radicals, that leads to the build-up of blood clots, which in turn cause heart disease, stroke and dementia. The technique, led by the University of Exeter researchers, investigates a part of the blood clotting process which focuses on the ways in which platelets from blood samples clump together.

“This method may be useful for future studies looking into new anti-platelet treatments for diseases such as diabetes, where clotting is disturbed and increases the risk of heart attack or stroke,” according to the study detailed in the Haematologica journal.

The researchers discovered that the enzyme NADPH Oxidase is critically important for the generation of free radicals, the stimulation of blood clotting and the promotion of blood vessel damage in patients.

They successfully used the technique in mice and human cells. Their aim is to better understand how blood cells function, which will help to develop new drugs against blood clotting diseases or to test the risk of clotting diseases in patients.

“We’re really excited to discover this new technique and its potential to understand how blood vessel diseases develop. For the first time, we can now simultaneously measure blood clotting and the formation of free radicals,” said lead author Giordano Pula, from the Exeter Medical School. 

“We know they play a key role in blood vessel damage caused by ageing, diabetes, obesity and chronic inflammation. We’re currently using this technique in our efforts to develop a new treatment to protect the blood vessels in diseases such as heart diseases, stroke, obesity, and vascular dementia,” Pula added.
 

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Simple Tips to Boost Heart Health at Work – Bel Marra Health

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February is heart health month. To ensure you’re working on improving your heart health, we wanted to share with you our simple tips to boost your heart while at work. It can be hard to always be active and eat the right foods, which are critical components of a healthy heart. This is why we want to provide you with easy steps to take to start improving your heart.

If you work a typical nine to five job, you’re likely pretty inactive during that time. For some of you, this may also mean you aren’t surrounded by the best food options either – unless you pack your own lunch.

To boost your activity levels, there are things you can add to your daily workday. For starters, if you are in a high building, consider taking the stairs more often. If you sit all day, remind yourself to move around each hour.

As mentioned, packing your own food and snacks is a good option so that you don’t binge on unhealthy foods. Pack your lunch bag with nuts, fruits, and seeds to keep you energized.

Lastly, work can be stressful, and stress can take a real negative toll on your heart health. Finding healthy ways to manage your stress can lead to better heart outcomes. This could involve stepping out for some fresh air, taking a few moments to concentrate on your breathing, or carrying around some essential oils with you to calm you down. Whatever healthy option you use to reduce stress, your heart will thank you for it.

These tips can go a long way in better controlling your cholesterol, blood sugar, blood pressure, and even weight, which are all contributing factors to heart health.


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