The Gary Null Show – 12.06.21

Researcher explains the psychology of successful aging

University of California at Los Angeles, November 2, 2021

Successful aging can be the norm, says UCLA psychology professor Alan Castel “There are a lot of myths about aging, and people often have negative stereotypes of what it means to get old,” Castel said. “I have studied aging for two decades, and have seen many impressive role models of aging, as well as people who struggle in older age. Happiness increases our lives by four to 10 years, a recent research review suggested. “As an added bonus,” Castel writes, “those additional years are likely to be happy ones.”


New study finds potatoes, when enjoyed as part of a healthy diet, are not associated with elevated heart health risk factors among adolescent girls

Boston University, October 29, 2021

Recently published research in the British Journal of Nutrition found that 9-17 year-old girls who consumed up to one cup of potatoes daily had no increased risk of becoming overweight or developing high blood pressure, dyslipidemia, or impaired fasting glucose by the end of the study in late adolescence. “Our results show that nutrient-rich potatoes can be part of a healthy diet in young girls during this important period of growth and development,” says the study’s senior author. “There is growing evidence that overall diet quality is what really matters in the preservation of heart health. Potatoes are an affordable food, with a number of valuable nutrients, and our research suggests that moderate intakes of potatoes, along with many other types of vegetables, can be a regular part of a healthy diet pattern.”


Study finds acupuncture lowers hypertension by activating natural opioids
University of California at Irvine, Oct. 31, 2021

Researchers with the UCI Susan Samueli Center for Integrative Medicine have found that regular electroacupunture treatment can lower hypertension by increasing the release of a kind of opioid in the brainstem region that controls blood pressure. In tests on rats, UCI cardiology researcher Zhi-Ling Guo and colleagues noted that reduced blood pressure lasted for at least three days after electroacupuncture by increasing the gene expression of enkephalins, which one of the three major opioid peptides produced by the body. The present study shows that repetitive electroacupuncture evokes a long-lasting action in lowering blood pressure in hypertension, suggesting that this therapy may be suitable for treating clinical hypertension..


The golden chanterelle mushroom hastens wound healing
Mazandaran University of Medical Sciences (Iran), November 3, 2021

The golden chanterelle mushroom, an edible fungus, makes for more than just a good and filling dinner. According to a study, you can also use it to heal your wounds faster. The study, published in the International Journal of Medicinal Mushrooms, investigated the fungus’ antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. They performed an in vivo experiment on male rats. The animals were given a circular excision and a linear incision and then divided into four groups: nontreated, vehicle-treated, treated with an ointment containing mushroom extract, and treated with madecassol, the reference drug. The circular and linear wounds were treated topically once a day for nine days and 17 days respectively.


New research links foods high in anthocyanins to a lower risk of cardiovascular disease
Northumbria University (UK), November 5, 2021

New research suggests eating red may be one of the best ways to keep your heart healthy. A study published in Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition suggests anthocyanins, the red-pigmented flavonoids that are abundant in Montmorency tart cherries, may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease and cardiovascular-related death. The systematic review and meta-analysis of 19 different studies found that people with the highest anthocyanin intake were 9% less likely to suffer from coronary heart disease and 8% less likely to die from causes associated with heart disease, compared to those with the lowest intake.


Researchers find phthalates in wide variety of fast foods

George Washington University Milken Institute School of Public Health, October 29, 2021

A team of researchers has found phthalates in a wide variety of fast foods. In their paper published in Journal of Exposure Science and Environmental Epidemiology, the group describes how they collected samples of fast food from several restaurants and tested them for phthalates and other chemicals meant to replace them—and what they found. Phthalates are esters of phthalic acid and are commonly used to make plastic substances more flexible. Researchers have found that consumption of phthalates can disrupt the endocrine system and by extension levels of hormones in the body. Research has also shown that they can lead to asthma in children and increased obesity.


Removing digital devices from the bedroom can improve sleep for children, teens

Penn State University, November 2, 2021

Removing electronic media from the bedroom and encouraging a calming bedtime routine are among recommendations Penn State researchers outline in a recent manuscript on digital media and sleep in childhood and adolescence. The recommendations, for clinicians and parents, are: 1. Make sleep a priority by talking with family members about the importance of sleep and healthy sleep expectations; 2. Encourage a bedtime routine that includes calming activities and avoids electronic media use; 3. Encourage families to remove all electronic devices from their child or teen’s bedroom, including TVs, video games, computers, tablets and cell phones; 4. Talk with family members about the negative consequences of bright light in the evening on sleep; and 5. If a child or adolescent is exhibiting mood or behavioral problems, consider insufficient sleep as a contributing factor.