Get moving to slow cardiovascular aging

As people age and become less active, the muscle in the heart’s left ventricle—the chamber that pumps oxygen-rich blood back out to the body—becomes stiffer. But as with other muscles, it’s possible to keep your heart muscles in shape longer and perhaps even reverse some of the effects of age by getting regular cardio exercise of sufficient intensity and duration. More »

Does apple cider vinegar have any proven health benefits?

Q. I have heard a lot about how apple cider vinegar can help improve one's health. Is there anything to this? A. As with so many dietary fads, apple cider vinegar has seen its share of health claims with little medical evidence to support them. The studies exploring its health benefits have focused on reductions in blood sugar levels and weight loss, but these have been small, short-term trials or animal studies. Apple cider vinegar contains acetic acid, which has been found to reduce absorption of starches and slow digestion, which can lead to a sensation of a full stomach. Despite these effects, in one study, the reduction in morning blood sugar levels after drinking 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar the night before over several days was quite small. Studies on weight loss and appetite suppression have mostly involved mice, which is a long way from proving effectiveness in people. (Locked) More »

What causes my feet to suddenly become numb?

Q. My feet tingle or feel numb like they are asleep at times, mostly when I am in bed or with my legs elevated. What causes that? A. The symptoms you describe may be related to peripheral neuropathy, which is nerve damage that affects multiple nerves leading out from the spinal cord to the arms and legs. Symptoms are often equal in both feet. If only one foot, or part of a foot, is affected, this suggests compression of an individual nerve. Another possibility for foot tingling or numbness with leg elevation is poor circulation, but this is often accompanied by leg cramping while walking and color changes in the feet (pale or white when elevated, and red when lowered). (Locked) More »

Straight talk about your voice

It’s common for a man’s voice to change as he ages, a condition called presbylaryngis, or aging of the larynx. The result is often that raspy, hoarse tone known as “old age” voice. Medication side effects and lifestyle habits also can contribute to presbylaryngis, but there are many self-help strategies that can strengthen and protect your voice. (Locked) More »

Balancing act

Every year, about one-third of adults older than age 65 experience at least one accidental fall. About 20% of these falls result in a serious injury like broken bones in the wrist, arm, and ankle; hip fractures; and head injuries. Performing balance exercises can help reduce a person’s risk of falling. (Locked) More »

Dealing with a cancer diagnosis

Any kind of cancer diagnosis is a life-changing event. But one part of the cancer process that often gets pushed aside is the psychological aspect of how to manage the stress, anxiety, and depression that come with it. No matter a person’s prognosis, there are ways to address the emotional aspects of dealing with cancer. (Locked) More »

The health benefits of writing your life story

Leaving some kind of legacy can be a driving force for many men. Writing one’s memoirs can be a way to leave behind something of lasting value for both family and friends. Besides recording life stories, memoirs can be an opportunity to pass along wisdom and life lessons, as well as a way to help explore troubling issues. (Locked) More »

Losing weight helps your partner slim down, too

People who make an effort to lose weight by joining a weight-loss program can help their partner do the same. Researchers believed this was due to a “ripple effect” in which people are more likely to adopt their partner’s new healthy habits. More »

Inflammatory foods are linked with higher colon cancer risk

People who followed an “inflammatory” diet that contained red and processed meat and refined grains had a 44% greater risk of developing colon cancer compared with people who ate a low-inflammation diet, which included high amounts of green leafy vegetables and whole grains. More »