July 16, 2012

Also, Rhythm & Stride Length

1 Walking Speed an Early Alzheimer's Tip-Off

A person's walking speed and pattern may be an early indicator of subsequent mental decline and the onset of Alzheimer's. A Mayo Clinic study of 1,341 people over 15 months measured their walking speed, rhythm, and length of stride, and found that those who walked more slowly, with an irregular cadence, and took shorter steps later manifested significantly greater loss of memory, cognition, and mental function. This opens the way for a simple and less costly alternative to current cognitive diagnostic procedures, which require extensive neurological testing. Moreover, the changes in gait may be an early indicator of mental impairment before it becomes pronounced enough for testing. One complicating factor: Studies show that people walk faster during walking tests than at home.

More at Usatoday.com | Posted 5 years ago by Robert S. Wieder

Previously: Southerners' High Risk for Cognitive Decline

Tags: Alzheimer's, Alzheimer's and Walking, Mayo Clinic and Walking, Cognitive Decline and Walking, Diagnosing Alzheimer's, Cognitive Diagnosis, Dementia and Walking, Cognitive Testing

Comment on This | Was this Interesting? Yes! (46%) / No! (54%)

Services on the Wane

2 Mental Health Needs of Seniors on Rise

One in 5 US seniors has a mental health or substance abuse problem, says a study from the Inst of Medicine. It adds that, over the next two decades, as the population ages and needs rise, care and services will decline due to a lack of medical professionals. "This is a wake-up call for many reasons," said Dr. Ken Duckworth, Nat’l Alliance on Mental Illness. The coming need for geriatric mental health care "is quite profound for us as a nation, and something we need to attend to urgently," he says. The Inst of Med calls for all health workers who treat seniors to be able to recognize signs of geriatric mental health problems and to provide basic care, at least. It calls for government funding of training programs and changes in how Medicare and Medicaid pay for mental health services.

More at USAToday.com | Posted 5 years ago by Melody Lesser

Previously: Beetroot Juice May Improve Senior Health

Tags: Institute of Medicine, Medicaid, Medicare, Mental Health, Seniors, Substance Abuse, Seniors' Mental Health, Seniors and Substance Abuse, Dr. Ken Duckworth, National Alliance on Mental Illness

Comment on This | Was this Interesting? Yes! (35%) / No! (65%)

Sporting Abilities Affected

3 TV Habits Predict Waist Size, Sports for Kids

Each hour of TV viewed by young kids ages 2 to 4 can contribute to waist circumference by the end of the fourth grade, and affect sporting abilities, say researchers from University of Montreal. They found that kids who watch 18 weekly hours of TV at 4.5 years old may have an extra 7.6 mm of waist by age 10. The study also found that each weekly hour of TV at 29 months corresponded with a decrease of around a third of centimeter in distance that a kid is capable of jumping in the standing long jump test, a measure of athletic ability for sports like basketball or skating. The research, published in International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, further explored the known association between preschool TV exposure and body fat present in children in the fourth grade.

More at Eurekalert | Posted 5 years ago by Peggy Rowland

Previously: Too Much Toddler TV Leads to Problems Later

Tags: TV Watching and Children, Toddler TV Habits, Too Much TV, TV Waist Size Relationship, International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activ, Quebec Longitudinal Study of Child Development, Preschool TV Exposure, Standing Long Jump Test

Read the Comments (2) | Was this Interesting? Yes! (42%) / No! (58%)

Gain Some Time Affluence

4 If You're Too Busy, Give Away Some Time

Volunteering or giving away your time can increase your sense of unhurried leisure or "time affluence." The research, forthcoming in the APS journal Psychological Science, suggests that people's sense of having time, known as time affluence, may be increased by volunteering. Researchers suggest that giving time away can boost a person's sense of efficiency and personal competence, which can stretch out time in the mind. That sense of having more time can make people more willing to commit to future engagements, even if they have a busy schedule, say researchers. The study was conducted by researchers at Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, Yale School of Management and Harvard Business School.

More at APS | Posted 5 years ago by Peggy Rowland

Tags: Psychological Science, Time Management, Giving Away Time, Perks Volunteer Work, Why Volunteer, Journal APS, Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, Time Affluence

Comment on This | Was this Interesting? Yes! (42%) / No! (58%)

Represents Change in Strategy

5 Truvada Will Be Used to Prevent HIV Infection

"The only legitimate use of this regimen is for partners of AIDS patients who are sexually active with them"
- James in the comments

The Food and Drug Administration has approved the use of the HIV drug Truvada as the first pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), a way to prevent infection in individuals who engage in high risk behavior, such as having sex with an HIV-positive person. A study involving 2,499 sexually active gay men found that the drug lowered the risk of HIV infection by 77 percent in those who took the drug regularly and a 43 percent reduction in those who did not take it regularly compared to the placebo groups. The new approach at preventing HIV infection has been praised by many as a way to stop the spread of AIDS, but some in the health care field are concerned that telling people a pill can reduce their risk encourages behavior that increase the risk of becoming infected with the virus that causes AIDS.

More at Yahoo! AFP | Posted 5 years ago by Kristie Hayes

Previously: Drug Prevents HIV Infection in Heterosexuals, AIDS Risk Reduced with One Pill a Day

Tags: AIDS, HIV, HIV Prevention, Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis, Truvada

Read the Comments (1) | Was this Interesting? Yes! (44%) / No! (56%)

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