The mental powers of super-agers

It is common to experience some cognitive decline with age, but not for a special group of older adults ages 60 to 80 called “super-agers.” Their example shows that it may be possible to keep an aging brain young and healthy. While genetics may play a key role, researchers also point to lifestyle habits, such as doing aerobic exercise, getting proper sleep, and reducing anxiety. (Locked) More »

When is heavy sweating a problem?

Excessive sweating is often a result because the body produces excess heat, like an overactive thyroid. Injuries to the nervous system, such as diabetic neuropathy or a spinal cord injury, also can trigger sweating in the damaged nerves area. However, the most common explanation for sudden onset of excessive perspiration is a new medication. (Locked) More »

Are there any benefits to exercising on an empty stomach?

Research has shown that aerobic exercise when fasting increases the use of a stored fat as an energy supply. Although these results sound promising, it is less certain that exercising on an empty stomach will help lose more weight. In fact, there are relatively few studies that have measured long-term weight loss or body fat composition. (Locked) More »

A better option for stroke prevention?

For more than 60 years, people at a high risk for stroke from atrial fibrillation—an irregular heartbeat that can lead to blood clots—had one choice of drug treatment: warfarin. But a better option may be direct oral anticoagulants (DOACs), which appear to be just as effective as warfarin, but without many of warfarin’s disadvantages, such as regular blood testing and interference with certain foods and over-the-counter drugs. (Locked) More »

Counting on fewer calories

Older men need to maintain a healthy weight, so being mindful of how many calories they actually need—and perhaps cutting back by about 10%, an approach called calorie restriction—may help some men stay healthy and maybe even live longer. Besides helping men lose excess weight, calorie restriction can encourage smarter food choices and portion control. (Locked) More »

Defend yourself from diverticulitis

About half of Americans ages 60 to 80 have diverticulosis, a condition in which pea-sized pouches, called diverticula, bulge outward from the colon. Most of the time the pouches don’t cause any problems, but if the diverticula become inflamed or infected, the result is diverticulitis, which produces symptoms like fever, nausea, vomiting, and pain or tenderness in the lower left abdomen. Drinking plenty of fluids and eating a high-fiber diet can help prevent the problem. More »

Turning your back on back surgery

Back pain remains one of the top reasons people seek medical care for pain, and for many older man, the source of their pain is spinal osteoarthritis. Finding relief is an ongoing struggle, but men should think hard before turning to surgery without first trying less invasive treatments. Surgery may help control the pain in some cases, so a person can function better, but it won’t cure the osteoarthritis. (Locked) More »

No place like home for knee replacement rehab

A home-based rehab program after a total knee replacement is equal to an initial inpatient rehab in terms of recovery speed, says a recent study. The researchers speculated that the home program helps because it encourages patients to be more active and independent from the get-go after surgery, which may help recovery in the long run. More »

Can drinking tea prevent dementia?

A new study suggests being a regular drinker of tea may protect against dementia, especially for people who are genetically predisposed to the disease. Researchers point to tea components like flavonoids, which have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant potential, and L-theanine, which regulates neurotransmitter and brain activities. More »

Elevated blood pressure may not predict early death in those with weak grip strength

Elevated blood pressure is not a useful sign of a high risk of early death among older adults if they have weak grip strength, says a new study. The findings suggest that when an older person still functions at a high level physically, high blood pressure can help indicate mortality risk. However, when the person is not physically robust, high blood pressure may not always be a viable marker. More »