Berries May Lower Risk Of Heart Disease

A study conducted at the Harvard School of Public Health and the University of East Anglia in the U.K  has confirmed that eating strawberries and blueberries can benefit the heart. Berries provide an excellent source of anthocyanins that serve as antioxidants that in turn fight stress and prevent damage caused by free radical cells. Women who consume three or more servings of berries a week reduce their risk of heart attack and heart disease by 32%. More here

Automatic Spending Cuts Not Expected To Effect Entitlement Programs

It is expected that automatic spending cuts will go into effect soon but should not harm entitlement programs such as Medicare, Medicaid or Social Security. The White House is constructing a plan that will cut spending costs for federal agencies by $85 billion dollars over a 7-month span. Cuts are likely to come out of discretionary spending, in turn protecting entitlement programs.  House budget chairman, Paul Ryan stated that he did expect automatic spending costs to take effect. More here

Aging Brain May Disrupt Sleep Quality And Effect Memory

A report released by the journal Nature Neuroscience introduced a new theory concerning structural brain changes that may arise with age. The study held at the University of California, Berkeley, is the first experiment that  directly correlates sleep quality with an aging memory. Bryce A. Mander, lead author of the study  said, “the analysis showed that the differences were due not to changes in capacity for memories, but to differences in sleep quality.” Researchers encourage older adults to strive for quality sleep to  maintain and improve memory. More here

Exercise And Vitamin D Decrease Risk Of Serious Falls

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force panel has discovered evidence showing that exercise and vitamin D supplements can reduce the risk of serious falls, especially in the elderly. 40% of individuals, 65 and above, fall at least once a year. The American Geriatrics Society (AGS) has recommended that individuals at an increased risk for falls should take at least 800 international units of vitamin D each day. More here

Federal Benefits Switch To Direct Deposit

In 2011, the Treasury Department initiated its Go Direct campaign in hopes that individuals receiving paper checks for their federal benefits would switch to direct deposit. The number of paper checks sent this year has shrunk by six million a month. Federal officials will be converting all benefits to direct deposit by March 1, 2013. More here

New Vaccine May Prevent Shingles

Researchers from the Department of Veterans Affairs and colleagues have been experimenting with a vaccine against shingles. The experiment prevented approximately 51% of cases of the shingles virus. Studies state that 50% of Americans who live to be 85 years old will at some point suffer from the virus. The Shingles Prevention Study consisted of 38,000 elderly men and women. More here

MRI Now Safe For Patients With Pacemakers Or Defibrillators

Past studies have shown that MRI scans may not be safe for individuals with pacemakers or implanted defibrillators, but recent research may prove there is no risk. Robert Russo and colleagues at Scripps Clinic in La Jolla, California, reviewed past medical records of patients having pacemakers or defibrillators who also had a medically advised MRI. The study found that with all devices turned off there were no dangerous complications. More here and here

Nutritional Factors To Slow Loss Of Muscle Mass

Many older adults suffer loss of muscle mass as they age, a condition known as Sarcopenia. According to The International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF) Nutrition Working Group, there are many nutritional factors that can help prevent Sarcopenia such as resistance training, and receiving the optimal daily dietary intake of protein and vitamin D. The study has also shown that vitamin B12 and folic acid may also help keep your muscles strong and more resistant to age. More here

Calorie Restricted Diet May Help Aging Brain

According to scientists, a calorie restricted diet can increase brain function as the body ages. A calorie restricted diet consists of a diet with 30% fewer calories than one’s normal daily intake. When reducing the body’s intake of calories the brain creates a protein called CREB1, this protein helps learning skills, anxiety control and memory. Scientists have been researching alternative methods to enable the body to produce more CREB1 without having to pursue strict caloric restrictions. More here and here

New Medical Invention Makes Cancer Procedure Easier

Checking for early signs of cancer may become easier, cheaper, quicker and safer with a new invention. Researchers have recently studied a new method where patients being checked for certain types of cancer can swallow a pill-like camera that, once swallowed will take detailed pictures of the esophagus and stomach. This technique would be much simpler than an endoscopy, a procedure where most patients are sedated. More here