Monday, October 25, 2010

More nonsense from the Marmot

Or is he onto something this time? He says some sensible things below. I have reddened the most sensible bit. I like the last sentence too

A hormone naturally created in the body could be the elixir of life, scientists believe. According to a study of thousands of over-50s, the substance known as DHEAS makes you live longer – and is more plentiful the wealthier you are. Research suggests that in future tablets, patches or injections could boost the DHEAS level.

In the meantime, leading a more fulfilling life could have a similar effect, says Professor Sir Michael Marmot, who led the research.

Higher levels are associated with both greater amounts of exercise and an active life with lots of pastimes, interests, friends and family – all of which tend to come with wealth.

The hormone is secreted by the adrenal glands, which sit on top of the kidneys. Production is greatest in childhood and teenage years, before gradually declining through adult life. By the age of 80 it could be just 10 per cent of the peak teen level.

Having more DHEAS in the body is linked to a better memory and ability to cope with mental tasks, particularly in men.

The research also found higher levels of a second hormone, the insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I), in those who are better off. The two hormones help control reactions to stress and regulate various body processes including digestion, the immune system, mood and energy usage.

Researchers said it is too soon to say whether the higher level of DHEAS is a result of being rich. However, Sir Michael believes the benefits of wealth, which include a better diet, greater control over life, less stress, more travel and involvement in the wider world through hobbies, sport or other interests will encourage the body to create DHEAS.

He stressed that improving the level of the hormone is not a simple matter of popping a pill.
‘In my view, it is a much bigger issue and involves the package of choices that wealth opens up,’ he added. The study was carried out by University College London for the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing.

Hormone levels were measured by taking blood samples from more than 10,000 people aged over 50, who have been monitored since 2004.

Sir Michael said: ‘We found a clear social gradient in several health indicators with less wealthy people having higher levels of obesity, lower levels of physical exercise, higher levels of smoking, lower fruit and vegetable intake and being more likely to suffer from hypertension and diabetes.

‘A striking new finding is that the hormone DHEAS which predicts life expectancy also follows a social gradient – less wealth, lower levels of DHEAS. ‘I believe this is the first time this has been identified. ‘My own interpretation is that it is a counter to stress. Having higher levels of DHEAS protects you.’

The same study confirmed previous research showing a correlation between poverty and increased levels of obesity, larger waist size and other measures of ill-health.


Celery good for memory -- in mice

A new study conducted by US researchers has claimed that celery -- staple ingredient of soups -- helps in preserving memory.

Celery has always been on the dieters list as it very low in calories. The study found that a chemical found in high concentrations in celery, capsicum peppers and peppermint could prevent loss of memory with the rise in the age.

"It shows you food doesn't have to be exotic or expensive to have exciting health properties. You are better off spending your money on a range of healthy fruit and vegetables rather than concentrating on this week's trendy superfood", explained, Carina Norris, independent nutritionist and author based in Fife.

The research team from the University of Illinois analyzed the effect posed by luteolin--a substance found in celery--on the brain. The research was performed using young mice in the age bracket of three to six months and older ones aged two years.

The study found that older mice given a diet rich in luteolin showed great results in memory tests compared to mice which were not fed on foods rich in luteolin.

Luteolin assists in escaping the chances of inflammation of the brain related to age. Age-related brain inflammation has been discovered to bear wide association with memory loss.


Four killed by celery

A food processing plant in Texas has been shut down after contaminated celery was linked to the deaths of four people. The victims all died from listeriosis food poisoning after eating chopped celery from the factory in San Antonio.

The rare bacterial infection is particularly dangerous for newborn babies, pregnant women and the elderly. It can be caused by not washing or cooking raw vegetables properly. No details were given about the victims.

Texas health chiefs traced the bacteria to chopped celery from Sangar Produce and Processing. They ordered the plant to stop operations immediately and recall all its products shipped since January.

‘At this point, the order prohibits the plant from reopening without our approval,’ health department spokeswoman Carrie Williams told CNN. ‘We will work with the company about setting up some guidelines before it can reopen,’ she added.

Six out of ten cases investigated by health officials over the past eight months were linked to the tainted celery. Four of those people died. Sangar strongly refutes the Texas Department of State Health Services accusations.


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