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By: kelvinsteve3 | July 17, 2017

Compared to their cooked counterparts, raw eggs are higher in certain important nutrients. But we’ve all heard warnings that eating uncooked liquid chicken is basically a death trap. So who’s right?

As with all practically everything nutrition-related, the answer isn’t black and white. It’s true that the cooking process destroys a tiny amount of some of the vitamins and minerals found in eggs. Raw eggs are slightly higher in B vitamins (like vitamin B6 and folate), vitamin E, the mineral choline, and the antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin. But the difference is so small that it’s basically insignificant, says Alissa Rumsey, MS, RD, author of Three Steps to a Healthier You. Case in point: You’ll get .085 micrograms of vitamin B6 and 146.9 milligrams of choline from a raw egg, versus .072 micrograms of B6 and 117 milligrams choline from a cooked one.

 

And when it comes to protein, cooked eggs come out as the clear winner. The body is only able to absorb about 50 percent of the protein from a raw egg, compared to 91 percent of the protein from a cooked egg, according to one Journal of Nutrition study. (Heat changes the structure of eggs’ protein molecules in a way that makes them more digestible.)


“That means raw eggs would provide only 3g of digestible protein, compared to 6g of digestible protein from a cooked egg,” Rumsey says.


But those aren’t the only reasons why cooked eggs might be a better choice. Raw eggs can harbor Salmonella, a type of bacteria that’s responsible for around a million cases of food poisoning annually, according to CDC estimates. Of course, raw eggs don’t account for all of those cases—you can also get Salmonella from poultry, meat, raw milk, cheese, or even contaminated fruits and vegetables. But they do make up a significant portion. Between 1985 and 2002, contaminated eggs accounted for 53 percent of all Salmonella cases reported to the CDC. Cooking the eggs eliminates that risk, Rumsey says. That’s why major health organizations like the CDC say you should steer clear of ones that are raw or lightly cooked.


SO, SHOULD YOU EVER GO RAW?

Ultimately, it’s up to you to decide whether the small vitamin and mineral boost is worth getting less protein and a possible case of food poisoning. Salmonella is most likely to strike in kids, pregnant women, the elderly, and people with compromised immune systems. “If you’re a healthy adult, you’re less likely to get [sick], especially if you take steps to minimize your risk,” says Harriet Whiley, PhD, an environmental biologist who studies public health at Flinders University in Australia. “However, there’s always a small chance.”


If you do opt to go raw, there are some steps you can take to minimize your risk for getting sick. Buying pasteurized eggs—which are heat-treated to kill bacteria—is one option. But like cooking, the pasteurization process could cause your raw eggs to have slightly lower levels of some vitamins and minerals, Rumsey says. So it might not be the best choice if you’re seeking out raw eggs specifically for the nutrition boost.


Whether you opt for pasteurized eggs or not, don’t automatically assume that free-range ones are safer, either. Caged hens might be more susceptible to Salmonella infection due to stress, but the controlled setting is easier to keep clean, explains Whiley. Free-range hens are less susceptible to getting a stress-related infection, but findings show that they could be more likely to contract Salmonella from their environment. “An egg may come in contact with contaminated feces, either from the chicken or from other animals carrying Salmonella,” Whiley explains.


Also, avoid eggs that are cracked, especially if they aren’t pasteurized—cracked eggs up the odds that bacteria on the surface of the shell could get inside of the egg. Even if you’re tempted to eat them, you’re better off just throwing them away, says Whiley.

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By: kelvinsteve3 | July 17, 2017

Sunscreen makes me think of beach vacations and all-day summer picnics. It’s easy to forget that where most people live, the summer sun can be just as dangerous in our own backyards or gardens. We’re at risk for sunburn and skin damage anytime the UV index is moderate to high. And you can’t always just look out the window to gauge your risk– as I write this on a cloudy, drizzly summer day, the UV index for my area is moderate (4), and the EPA recommends sunscreen and sunglasses. Throughout much of the US, sun damage is a risk almost year-round.

Most of us don’t wear sunscreen as often as we should, and when we do, we don’t always apply it well enough or often enough to completely protect us from sunburn. Studies show that at least a third of us get at least one sunburn a year. Most of these are first-degree burns, only affecting the outermost layer of skin, and though they’re painful, they can be treated at home with over-the-counter products like aloe vera.

 

But sometimes, either because of a long period of unprotected high UV exposure or days of moderate UV exposure, sun burns can be more serious. A UK gardener recently made news with extensive second-degree burns on his shoulders and neck. He says that the sun didn’t seem particularly intense, but he was outside all day two sunny days in a row without sunscreen.


In 2013, the latest year for which data was evaluated, there were an estimated 33, 826 ER visits for sunburn in the U.S. Many people don’t realize it’s possible to get a second-degree burn from the sun until it happens to them. Second-degree burns injure the first and second layers of skin, causing blistering and swelling of the burned area. The first layer of skin eventually peels off, leaving a pale or pink area of unpigmented skin. The skin may take a year or longer to regain its normal pigment.


Always check with your doctor if you’re concerned about a sunburn, but most second-degree sunburns can be treated at home. If you’re able to get under a cool shower shortly after you notice the burn, try running cool water over the area for 15-30 minutes. Anytime you burn yourself, damage to the skin can continue even after you’ve removed the heat source, especially when the burn is deep. By lowering your skin temperature, you can sometimes prevent further damage. (Ice or ice water isn’t recommended because it can cause its own skin damage.)


Second-degree burns have a higher risk of infection, and you should always wash your hands before cleaning the burn or applying anything to the area. As you gently wash the area, you may notice some skin coming off with gentle pressure, but try to avoid breaking open any blisters. Dry the area with a clean cloth or sterile gauze. You can use over-the-counter pain relievers like ibuprofen to help with pain, which can be severe.


If you have large blisters, you may have a more severe second-degree burn and should contact your doctor. You should also call your doctor if you have blisters over a very large area, increased pain, lack of improvement with home treatment, new symptoms, or significant scarring. Your doctor may prescribe a mild steroid cream to help with swelling and speed healing or an antibiotic if they suspect infection.


Always wear sunscreen when you’re planning on spending time outdoors in the summer, even if you’re wearing long clothing or in the shade. The best treatment for sunburn is prevention – each sunburn increases your risk of skin cancer and ages your skin.


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By: kelvinsteve3 | July 17, 2017

The study, from BMC Medicine, said taller men have a greater risk of getting an aggressive form of the disease because they have more cells in their body. According to researchers, every 10 centimeters in a person’s height increased the possibility of an individual developing the aggressive prostate cancer by 21 percent, and death by 17 percent.


“The finding of high risk in taller men may provide insights into the mechanisms underlying prostate cancer development -- for example, related to early nutrition and growth,” Dr. Aurora Perez-Cornago, a researcher from Oxford University who worked on the study, told The Guardian.


“We also found that a healthy body weight is associated with a reduced risk of high-grade prostate cancer and death from prostate cancer years later,” Perez-Cornago said.


Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer among men in the world, but not much is known about it, according to the study.


Scientists said men who are obese have a lower chance of being diagnosed with the cancer because they have less concentrations of "prostate-specific antigens." Obese men also tend to have larger prostates making it harder to find the cancer. The study’s scientists said they hope to do more studies to determine if obese men have a higher risk of getting the cancer.


The study surveyed data from 141,896 mostly white males. “It is certainly interesting that, according to this research, certain physical characteristics appear to increase a man’s likelihood of developing aggressive prostate cancer, as it might provide pointers to help uncover certain genetic markers and early developmental processes which hold significance in terms of causing the disease to develop,” Dr. Matthew Hobbs, the director of research at Prostate Cancer United Kingdom, said.


“It also underlines once again the importance of living a healthy lifestyle to help defend against a host of diseases, including prostate cancer,” Hobbs said.


Hobbs warned that men of all weights and heights could potential be diagnosed with the disease.


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By: kelvinsteve3 | July 08, 2017

What is permanent makeup?

Permanent makeup, also known as cosmetic tattooing, is the same procedure as traditional tattooing. A technician uses a needle to insert pigments into the dermis layer of the skin to change the skin’s appearance. The most common changes are made to the lips, brows, and eyes to imitate the look of cosmetics like lipstick, eyeshadow, eyeliner, and brow liner.

 

With help from a permanent makeup professional, women choose which colors they want, sometimes receive topical anesthesia, and undergo a tattooing procedure lasting up to several hours. The immediate results are usually much darker than the final results, and the colors lighten up during the first several days of healing. The results may last for months or years depending on factors like the type of pigments used and sun exposure.


Permanent makeup is generally considered safe. It carries the same risks as other tattoos. The most serious is the risk of infection from improperly sanitized tools and equipment. Tattooing services are regulated on a local level, and your state or local health department can give you more information about regulations in your area. Always make sure the professional you choose to work has any necessary certifications or licenses and is able to answer safety questions to your satisfaction. You should be able to see your technician open new, sterile needles in front of you and use new gloves for your procedure.

Other risks are less serious but still worth noting. According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), allergic reactions to the pigments used in tattooing and permanent makeup are rare, but they can be hard to treat because the allergen is very difficult to remove. The FDA also lists granulomas (nodules that form around foreign material), keloids (excessive scarring), and removal problems as risks of permanent makeup.

And if you opt for permanent makeup and later need an MRI, you should inform the technician. Sometimes people with permanent makeup who undergo MRIs experience swelling or burning around the tattooed area, but these effects are temporary.


Is permanent makeup painful?

For most people the process of getting permanent makeup is at least uncomfortable. Most people who receive tattoos report discomfort, and the lips and eyelids are very sensitive areas. While topical anesthetics usually aren’t used for traditional tattooing, they’re common in the field of permanent makeup, and your technician can discuss the options with you. Since most procedures last at least two hours, it’s important to let you technician know early on if you’re in more pain than you think you can reasonably withstand for that amount of time, but keep in mind that, as with all tattooing procedures, there may be a certain degree of discomfort that’s unavoidable.


If you have other health-related questions, you can always talk to your doctor about how to minimize the risks of any tattooing procedure.

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By: kelvinsteve3 | July 08, 2017

Every generation and every culture seem to have one. The ancient Romans bathed in crocodile feces to stay youthful, and some unlucky Victorian-era women applied mercury directly to their faces to eliminate (corrode) wrinkles and blemishes. Today, celebrities are encouraging women to put leeches, placenta, and even their own blood on their faces to keep age at bay. Everyone’s looking for a way to turn back the clock and keep skin smooth, plump, and elastic as we age. Now, modern science is taking a turn.
  

In the 21st century, we don’t have to wonder what makes skin look youthful and why it ages the way it does. We know that collagen, the most abundant protein in our body, is what gives skin its structure and elasticity. It’s found primarily in hair, nails, muscles, tendons, bones and skin. Starting around age 30, collagen begins to break down faster than it’s replaced, and our skin slowly loses elasticity, firmness, and moisture as we age.

Collagen for cosmetics is usually sourced from animals like fish, and it’s a popular ingredient in anti-aging creams. Many people love collagen creams, but some dermatologists are skeptical about collagen’s ability to penetrate the skin deeply enough to have a lasting impact. Liquid collagen drinks claim to be able to boost collagen production from the inside.


If you’re wondering how collagen could make the journey from your intestines to your face, you’re right to be skeptical. It doesn’t, and that’s not actually the basis of liquid collagen’s claims. Instead, they suggest that as the body digests collagen molecules, breaking them down into smaller parts, your body recognizes the bits of collagen in your system and thinks there must have been a big breakdown, maybe an injury, and it responds by boosting your natural collagen production.


The claims sound reasonable, but are they backed by research? A study funded by the makers of Pure Gold Collagen found that daily supplementation with 50 mL of their product reduced dryness and wrinkles in 60 days and increased collagen density and skin firmness over 12 weeks. We should be a little suspicious of research financed by companies trying to sell us a product, but two other high-quality studies support their findings. A 2014 article published in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology found that collagen supplementation helped hydrate skin after 8 weeks and increased collagen density after only 4 weeks, and a 2013 article in Skin Pharmacology and Physiology found only slight improvement in skin moisture but a significant improvement in elasticity with collagen supplementation.


The research is impressive so far, and there aren’t many serious safety concerns. The most significant risk is an allergic reaction. If you’re allergic to fish, you may have a reaction to collagen peptides derived from fish, and the same allergy concerns exist for collagen peptides derived from beef, pork, and shellfish. If you have a food allergy, always check your cosmetics or supplements for ingredients that could trigger an allergic reaction. Other side effects can include upset stomach, decreased appetite, or an unpleasant aftertaste (especially associated with fish-derived products).


The biggest downside to collagen supplements for most consumers is the cost. Cheaper brands may contain types of collagen that haven’t been well-researched, and the top brands can cost over $100 for a month’s supply. It may be tempting to pick up a pack of drink mixes at your local drug store for $10, but if you’re buying a product with ingredients that haven’t been researched, you could be throwing your $10 away. Researchers don’t yet understand why some collagen supplements are more effective than others and haven’t researched all of the types of collagen available in stores. Even though collagen supplements are considered safe, always check with your doctor before adding any supplements to your diet.


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By: kelvinsteve3 | July 04, 2017

To investigate the effect of prolonged breastfeeding on children's teeth, Karen Glazer Peres of the University of Adelaide in Australia and colleagues analyzed data on 1,129 children born in 2004 in Pelotas, Brazil, a community with a public fluoridated water supply.

 

Breast-feeding information was collected at birth and when children were 3 months, 1 year and 2 years old. Sugar consumption data was collected at ages 2, 4 and 5.


By age 5, nearly 24 percent of children had severe early childhood caries, which researchers defined as six or more decayed, missing or filled tooth surfaces, according to the report in the journal Pediatrics. Close to half of children had at least one tooth surface affected.


Children who had breast-fed for at least two years, which was close to one-quarter of the group, had a higher number of teeth that were decayed, missing or had a filling. Their risk of having severe early childhood caries was also 2.4 times higher compared with those who were only breastfed up to 1 year of age. Breast-feeding for 13 months to 23 months had no effect on dental caries.


To collect data on sugar consumption, the team used a list of food items or food groups consumed the day prior to a clinic visit. At age 2, groups were categorized as "low sugar consumption," meaning zero or less than twice daily, and "high sugar consumption," meaning two or more times daily.


But sugar consumption was only associated with a greater risk of having severe early childhood dental caries when children who consumed the highest amount were compared with children who consumed the least.

Subsequent analyses of prolonged breast-feeding, taking into account the pattern of sugar consumption throughout the child's life course, showed that prolonged breastfeeding was an independent risk for severe caries and decayed, missing or filled teeth, the authors note.


"Breast-feeding is the unquestioned optimal source of infant nutrition. Dental care providers should encourage mothers to breastfeed and, likewise, advise them on the risk," Glazer Peres told Reuters Health by email.

"General recommendations such as drinking fluoridated water as well as cleaning a child's teeth with fluoridated toothpaste before going to bed may help to prevent dental caries," she said. "These approaches are in line with most of the guidelines for practice and policy recommendations worldwide."


"There is no question that babies who breast-feed for a longer time than recommended by the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry or the American Academy of Pediatrics have an increased cavity rate," noted Dr. Robert Morgan, chief of dentistry at Children's Health in Dallas, Texas, who was not involved in the study.


"The issue is not entirely related to breast feeding. Babies who sleep with a bottle of milk or take a sippy cup of milk throughout the day or night also have an increased incidence of caries," he said by email.

"The real correlation of breast-feeding is perhaps the number of exposures to food and drink that a child has during the day and night due to the ease of access to mom," he explained.


"We know that after a baby eats or drinks there is a rise in bacteria and a rise in decay potential for approximately 20 minutes, (after which) bacterial growth and concurrent acid production decreases, as does the decay potential. Therefore, we recommend toddlers eat breakfast, lunch and dinner with perhaps a mid-morning snack and a mid-afternoon snack. If a parent brushes (the child's teeth) after breakfast and dinner there are only three exposures to increased decay rate times," Morgan said.


"In my practice, for the mothers who would like to breast-feed for a longer period, we advise them to follow the recommended feeding schedule regardless of the feeding methods, whether breast, bottle or cup - feed and drink a non-water drink no more than five times a day and never at night - and we encourage the brushing schedule (after breakfast and dinner feeding)," he said.


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By: kelvinsteve3 | July 04, 2017

While scientists and doctors have long known that a woman's chances of having a child drop the older she gets, a new study suggests that a man's age can affect a couple's chances as well.


According to a new study out of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard Medical School, the incidence of live birth declines significantly as men grow older.

 

The study analyzed 19,000 in-vitro fertilization cycles in 7,753 couples at an IVF center between 2000 and 2014, according to a press release from the European Study of Human Reproduction and Embryology.

"Declining sperm quality certainly plays some role, but our work shows that this is not the whole picture," says the lead researcher. "We found similar results among couples with no documented male infertility, so something else is happening." Researchers divided participants into four age groups: under 30, 30-35, 35-40, and 40-42.


They found that the younger the man was on average, the better the woman's chances of successful birth. For example, the Guardian reports, women under 30 had a 73 percent success rate with IVF if their partners were between 30 and 35.


Women in that same category whose partners were between 40 and 42 saw that number drop to 46 percent. Among women 35 to 40 years old whose partners were between 30 and 35, there was a 54 percent chance of live birth.


That rose to 70 percent in men under 30. The research "may help women to encourage their male partners to get a move on," says an obstetrics professor not involved in the study.


"This reminds us that it takes two to tango and it’s not just down to the age of the woman."

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By: kelvinsteve3 | June 05, 2017

Chewing gum can trick the body into thinking that the person is eating.

Among the difficult things a woman has to do after having a C-section — from tending to her stitches to learning to breast-feed — now there's a recommendation that's a little easier: chew gum.

 

A new meta-analysis suggests that chewing gum three times a day for 30 minutes each time can help bring back women's normal gut function after a C-section delivery.


Up to one in five women develop a condition called "postoperative ileus" after a C-section, according to the meta-analysis, published online May 14 in The Journal of Maternal-Fetal & Neonatal Medicine.

 

"Postoperative ileus" means that the normal movements of a person's bowels — which squeeze and relax to move food along — slow down or sometimes even stop entirely, said senior study author Dr. Vincenzo Berghella, an OB-GYN at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia.

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By: kelvinsteve3 | June 05, 2017

Where do dreams come from? Researchers now say they know: A specific group of cells in the brain stem is responsible for controlling dreaming sleep , also called Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep, a new study says.

The study also showed that damage to those cells could lead to a sleeping disorder called REM Behavior Disorder (RBD) , which makes a person act out violent dreams .

 

The findings have far broader implications than pinpointing the neurological source of dreams , though, said the study's principal investigator, John Peever, a professor of cell and systems biology at the University of Toronto. Because previous studies have shown that 80 percent of people with RBD develop incurable brain diseases, the new research could give drug companies a specific group of cells to target for therapies that slow the progression of neurodegenerative diseases.


"For some reason, the cells in the REM sleep area are the first to be sickened, and then the neurodegenerative disease spreads up into the brain and affects the other areas that cause disorders like Parkinson's disease ," Peever told Live Science.

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By: kelvinsteve3 | June 02, 2017

A new study on mice published May 24 in the Journal of Neuroscience shows that missing out on sleep may cause parts of our brains to start eating other parts.


And the Telegraph reports that's not necessarily something you want to be happening. The study revolves around two types of glial cells: astrocytes and microglial cells, according to New Scientist.

 

Astrocytes get rid of worn-out and unnecessary synapses, while microglial cells do the same to damaged cells and debris. Science Alert reports both types of glial cells are active during sleep and play an important role in repairing the brain at the end of the day.


So it's somewhat unexpected that astrocytes stepped up their activity—more than doubling it—in the brains of chronically sleep-deprived mice.


"We show for the first time that portions of synapses are literally eaten by astrocytes because of sleep loss,” researcher Michele Bellesi says.


That may not be a bad thing, as the astrocytes were still going to work on the largest, most-used synapses. As Bellesi puts it, "They are like old pieces of furniture, and so probably need more attention and cleaning."


What is more likely to be a problem is the increase in microglial activity caused by lack of sleep. Increased microglial activity has been linked to Alzheimer's in the past. It's unclear if the same thing happens in the brains of humans or if catching up on sleep can reverse it.

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