Filed under Health
Some of us already know this.
Men who have been diagnosed with poor sperm quality and who are trying to have children should limit their cell phone use.
Researchers have found that while cell phone use appears to increase the level of testosterone circulating in the body, it may also lead to low sperm quality and a decrease in fertility.
“Our findings were a little bit puzzling,” says Rany Shamloul, a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology and lead researcher on the project. “We were expecting to find different results, but the results we did find suggest that there could be some intriguing mechanisms at work.”
The research team discovered that men who reported cell phone use had higher levels of circulating testosterone but they also had lower levels of luteinizing hormone (LH), an important reproductive hormone that is secreted by the pituitary gland in the brain.
The researchers hypothesize that electromagnetic waves (EMW) emitted by cell phones may have a dual action on male hormone levels and fertility. EMW may increase the number of cells in the testes that produce testosterone; however, by lowering the levels of LH excreted by the pituitary gland, EMW may also block the conversion of this basic circulating type of testosterone to the more active, potent form of testosterone associated with sperm production and fertility.
More in-depth research is needed to determine the exact ways in which EMW affects male fertility.
Extracted from Queens Uni site
Thirsty? You might want to consider a steaming cup of tea. In a survey of existing research published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, the authors report that not only does tea rehydrate and quench your thirst as well as water does, it comes with additional health benefits too.
“Drinking tea is actually better for you than drinking water,” Dr. Carrie Ruxton, a nutritionist and the lead author of the study told the BBC. “Water is essentially replacing fluid. Tea replaces fluids and contains antioxidants so it’s got two things going for it.”
Those antioxidants — specifically flavanoids — can reduce damage done to cells through everyday living, so researchers believe these same compounds may help to ward off heart attacks and some types of cancer.
The researchers also addressed a myth about tea’s dehydrating effects. Although caffeine does remove water from your system, even a strong cup of tea — or coffee, for that matter — is introducing more water to your body than it may remove.
Bisphenol A, or BPA, as its close friends call it, is a chemical used to create plastics. It’s included in a ton of great stuff—water bottles, tooth fillings, sports equipment—because it’s cheap and shatterproof. It also kills sperm!
A new report by Kaiser Permanente only scares us shitless about BPA even more, saying that elevated exposure to the stuff makes men two to four times more likely to have less, worse sperm. And some of the sperm you do have will be dead. All of these things are not qualities you want your sperm to possess, if you are planning on populating the earth anytime soon (or ever). And, just in case you thought you were safe because you’re not rolling around on the floor rubbing plastics across your face—everyone involved in the study was within the exposure levels the EPA has deemed safe. Thanks, EPA!
And it gets worse: scientists keep finding places where BPA is seeping into our systems. Canned foods! Receipts! Even if you think you’re too good for canned beans, odds are you’re handling at least a receipt or two every single day.
Who doesn’t love eating out? It’s great not to have to cook for yourself, but it can also be anxiety-inducing to think about someone else cooking for you. Just what happened to the food before it arrived on our table? Was the meat handled correctly? Did the cook wash his hands? Frankly, some of the common practices of the food service industry might surprise the average customer. Divine Caroline talked to some seasoned industry professionals to discover what words of wisdom they had about the behind-the-scenes scene at their favorite spot. It’s helpful advice, but best not to read on a full stomach.
1. Don’t Be the Last Table of the Night
Most servers complain about the party who walks in at five minutes ’til closing time, but what makes late-night dining ill-advised isn’t the inconvenience. Besides being a pain, it’s doubtful that the food will be very good. By the end of the night, the kitchen is in full clean-up mode, so entrées are more likely to be haphazardly thrown together than carefully prepared. They’re using ingredients that were prepped hours ago, and cooking them in ovens or fryers that contain the accumulated buildup of an entire night’s service. Sometimes chefs cook and clean at the same time, increasing the likelihood of your steak being sprayed with drain cleaner or particulates from the bleach they’re using to mop the floor.
2. Vermin Happen
Any place where food is stored is going to attract pests, and in large cities with older infrastructure (like Boston or New York), vermin are simply an unpleasant fact. Most restaurants battle against it every day, but it’s inevitable that sometimes customers are going to see a roach or a rat. Rare is the restaurant where they’re not at least an occasional problem. Even clean restaurants can attract pests, so seeing one isn’t an indictment against the restaurant’s cleanliness. Usually, if it doesn’t seem like the kind of place that would have bug problems, it’s probably a more-or-less isolated incident. Sadly, though, there are indeed restaurants where the pests seem right at home. Ben, from New York, says, “Customers should try not to freak out if they see something, and if they can subtly point it out to a manager or server, they’ll probably get a freebie or two.”
3. Be Wary of Fish
Although a restaurant might list a given fish on its menu, there’s no guarantee that the snapper listed on the menu isn’t a cheaper fish like tilapia. It’s not always the restaurant’s fault, as seafood distributors do most of the mislabeling. Unfortunately, restaurants themselves do engage in fishy business, like selling endangered or threatened species like bluefin tuna or Chilean sea bass under different names like “toro.” Most customers don’t even know the difference.
Very rarely do restaurants get food deliveries on the weekend, so anything served on Sunday night has probably been in the cooler for a few days at least, and might not be at the peak of freshness. Ben*, the former manager of a restaurant in New York, says, “Be wary of anything that needs to be very fresh on a Sunday, especially fish. Probably best to stay away entirely from a Sunday fish special.” Putting things on special is how many restaurants clear out merchandise that would otherwise go bad. A weekend fish special is basically saying, “Please eat this today because we can’t sell it tomorrow.”
4. Hygiene Isn’t Perfect
Most restaurants have high cleanliness standards, but truthfully, sanitation isn’t always perfect. “The kitchen can be a gross place,” says Angie, a pastry chef in San Francisco. “I have seen servers and chefs come back from the bathroom or a cigarette break, not wash their hands, and go back to handling food.” Restaurants are busy places, and many times the workers just don’t take the time to be sanitary. Although state boards of health set strict rules for restaurants, some rules (like wearing gloves) are only followed on inspection day, because following them all the time would slow down production. The truth is that chefs handle food with their bare hands, bartenders touch your garnish after wiping down the bar, and servers are touching menus and utensils used by other patrons without washing their hands in between tables. Also, if it’s flu season, you can be sure that at least a few employees on duty will be sick. Since restaurant employees aren’t usually paid for sick time, they have no choice but to come to work when they’re ill, no matter how sniffly or sneezy they might be.
Of course, not all restaurants are cesspools of filth. As a general rule, cleanliness depends on the standards set by the owner, and high-end or family-owned restaurants tend to have better hygiene than chain restaurants or diners do because the owners have more personal accountability and a reputation to preserve. To gauge a restaurant’s cleanliness, look around the dining room. If the ketchup bottles have crusted nozzles, the bathroom is foul, or the floor looks like it hasn’t been swept all week, chances are that the kitchen is a reflection of those same standards. Restaurants with high standards pay attention to small details.
5. Don’t Look Behind the Scenes
I once worked in a restaurant where the service stations were in view of the customers, and many people were shocked at some of the tasks we performed. We refilled the ketchup bottles from a giant plastic bladder, dirty buspans were stored next to fresh food, and the floor was covered in debris. What they witnessed wasn’t criminal or negligent; it was just part of the inner workings of a restaurant, which can be shocking for someone who’s never worked in one. Sometimes it’s better to stay in the dark, so if you have the chance to peek into the kitchen or the staff-only area, don’t.
Once your food is in front of you, don’t let it out of your sight, because you never know what could happen to it. When entrées are boxed up to go or sent to the kitchen to be cooked further, sometimes the staff cuts corners. Kim, a former server and bartender from New York, advises, “Always wrap up your own food. I’ve seen too many pizzas picked out of the garbage and breadsticks roll under the counters.”
Most of these, we already knew, but it’s always good to remember and practise likewise
I have (and had) plenty of friends with tongue studs, so I guess this news goes out to them
Apparently, people with tongue piercings risk developing gaps between their front teeth as a result of playing with the stud, US researchers have found.
The University of Buffalo team says that, as well as potentially requiring cosmetic work, people can develop infections and chipped teeth. The researchers said that people with tongue piercings were likely to push the metal stud up against their teeth and consequently cause gaps and other problems to arise.
Sawsan Tabbaa, professor of orthodontics at the University of Buffalo, detailed the 26-year-old’s case. She had had no space between her teeth before wearing a barbell-shaped tongue stud. However, a space had appeared between her upper front teeth over the course of the seven years she had worn it for, because the metal bar was pushed against and between the teeth.
Extracted from BBC News
Meet the Le Whif inhalers.
A lipstick-shaped aerosol that sprays particles of dark chocolate into the mouth is being hailed as providing all the pleasure of the real thing but with no need to feel guilty. Dieters may also find that the mere taste of one of their favourite treats curbs their appetite.
David Edwards, a Harvard professor who invented the spray, says that it only takes a touch of chocolate to satisfy our tastebuds. He said: ‘When you breathe the chocolate into your mouth, it dissolves immediately and coats the tongue and taste buds.
‘Le Whif is a new approach to eating, by breathing.
Additionally, Le Whif comes in three different chocolate flavours: plain, raspberry and mint.
Source: Daily Mail UK
Filed under Health
People who regularly put in overtime and work 10 or 11-hour days increase their heart disease risk by nearly two-thirds, research suggests.
The findings come from a study of 6,000 British civil servants, published online in the European Heart Journal.
After accounting for known heart risk factors such as smoking, doctors found those who worked three to four hours of overtime a day ran a 60% higher risk.
The researchers said there could be a number of explanations for this:
People who spend more time at work have less time to exercise, relax and unwind. They may also be more stressed, anxious, or have depression. A career-minded person will also tend to be a “Type A” personality who is highly driven, aggressive or irritable, they say. “Employees who work overtime may also be likely to work while ill – that is, be reluctant to be absent from work despite illness,” they add.
Extracted from BBC news.
This is seriously funny. A picture paints a thousand words indeed.
A new study led by researchers at the University of Copenhagen has confirmed that vitamin D plays an important role in activating immune defenses against infectious diseases like flu.
Vitamin D deficiency has already been linked to a wide spectrum of diseases including heart disease, cancer, diabetes, depression, autoimmune disease and many others.
In the case of flu fighting, Dr. John Cannell and his colleagues have reported that vitamin D helps produce antibacterial peptides that help protect against flu. That is why in winter people are prone to becoming vitamin D deficiency and getting infected with flu viruses.
Dr. Cannell, a vitamin D expert and director of Vitamin D Council, says in his newsletter sent last year that two physicians, one in Wisconsin and the other in Georgia reported to him that few of their patients/residents who maintained a high level of serum vitamin d acquired swine flu last year while many of other patients and medical workers who did not take vitamin D to maintain high vitamin D levels got swine flu and other flu viruses.
Sleeping consistently for less than six hours a night may cause an early death, but too much sleep could also mean problems, according to a study that claims to have found unequivocal evidence of the potential harm from abnormal sleep patterns.
The research, by academics in the UK and Italy, analysed data from 16 separate studies across Europe, the US and Asia over 25 years, covering more than 1.3m people and more than 100,000 deaths.
It found that those who generally slept for less than six hours a night were 12% more likely to experience a premature death over a period of 25 years than those who consistently got six to eight hours’ sleep. Evidence for the link was unequivocal, the researchers concluded.
It also concluded that those who consistently sleep more than nine hours a night can be more likely to die early. Oversleeping itself is not seen as a risk but as a potential indicator of underlying ailments.
“Whilst short sleep may represent a cause of ill health, long sleep is believed to represent more an indicator of ill health,” said Professor Francesco Cappuccio, who led the study and is head of the Sleep, Health and Society programme at the University of Warwick.
“Consistently sleeping six to eight hours per night may be optimal for health. The duration of sleep should be regarded as an additional behavioural risk factor, or risk marker, influenced by the environment and possibly amenable to change through both education and counselling as well as through measures of public health aimed at favourable modifications of the physical and working environments.”
The study noted that previous research into lack of sleep had shown it was associated with ailments including heart disease, high blood pressure, obesity, and diabetes.