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    Medicine In the News

    This Is How Much Exercise You Need for Your Heart

    Exercise Your Way to a Healthy Heart

    Medicine in the News

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    Image: © AntonioDiaz

    Diagnosis Life keeps you in the know with the latest in health and wellness. Here are five of the hottest medical stories making the rounds, in simple terms.

    1. This is how much exercise you need to protect your heart.

      Diagnosis Life summary:
      How much exercise do you really need? The answer is often different based on who you ask. A study in the Journal of Physiology, however, dares to give you a straight answer, at least when it comes to taking care of your heart and blood vessels. Exercising 2-3 days a week for 30 minutes helps to decrease stiffening of middle-sized arteries and puts less stress on the heart. Exercising 4-5 days a week will also help larger central arteries like the aorta. Every step counts. Try to get out there and get moving.

    2. Tea leaves may be able to kill cancer cells.

      Diagnosis Life summary:
      A tea aficionado, I love to hear medical news about my favorite beverage. A study in Applied Nano Materials used tea leaves (Camellia sinensis) to make nanoparticles that could attack cancer cells. These nanoparticles were compared to cisplatin, a common chemotherapy agent, and were effective in destroying up to 80% of lung cancer cells in the lab. Much more research needs to be done before these nanoparticles could be tested clinically, but I would be very curious to see if this worked in live patients.

    3. An egg a day will keep a stroke away?

      Diagnosis Life summary:
      Eggs are good, then they are bad, and then they are good again. What can you believe? A study published in Heart tried to answer that very question. A survey of nearly a half million adults without pre-existing cardiovascular disease looked at average egg consumption per day. Over 9+ years, they also noted whether or not these same people had a heart attack or a stroke. As it turned out, people who ate 0.76 eggs per day (5.5 eggs per week) had an 11% lower risk of developing and an 18% lower risk of dying from cardiovascular disease than people who ate none. Of course, correlation does not equal causation. Still, how interesting would it be if eggs, a food known to be high in cholesterol, actually protect your heart?

    4. Moderate alcohol consumption can be bad for you.

      Diagnosis Life summary:
      We have been told that a glass of wine can be good for the heart but be careful about drinking too much. A study in Lancet looked at the frequency of stroke and fatal heart disease in approximately 600,000 drinkers. The more people drank, the higher the risk for these conditions. Drinking more than 100 grams per week (averaging one drink per day) correlated with a shorter life expectancy than drinking less. Looking at a drinker who was 40 years old, their lifespan could be decreased by 6 months (100-200 grams per week), 1-2 years (200-350 grams per week), or 4-5 years (>350 grams per week) if they drank the corresponding amount.

    5. Vitamin D may reduce the risk of miscarriage.

      Diagnosis Life summary:
      This is another important reason to take prenatal vitamins during pregnancy. A study in The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology looked at subsequent pregnancies in more than 1,100 women. All of the women had at least one prior miscarriage. The researchers found that not only were these women 10% more likely to become pregnant if they had normal Vitamin D levels, but they were 15% more likely to have a successful pregnancy despite a prior miscarriage. Nutrition is so very important for a healthy pregnancy.

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