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Health & Fitness

  • Children ‘boost arthritis risk’

    Children ‘boost arthritis risk’

    A woman’s children can increase her risk of rheumatoid arthritis, research suggests. Foetal cells from an unborn baby may remain in a mother’s body for decades and trigger an immune reaction linked to the disease, scientists believe. But whether...

  • Working intestine grown in lab

    Working intestine grown in lab

    Functioning human intestine has been grown from stem cells in the laboratory, paving the way to new treatments for gut disorders. Scientists first created tissue fragments called ‘organoids’ that were transplanted into mice, where they matured.

  • Impotency pill ‘could treat heart disease’

    Viagra could provide a treatment for heart disease, a study suggests. In trials, the impotency pill’s active ingredient improved the heart performance of patients with a range of conditions while having no adverse effect on blood pressure. Most...

  • Sugary drinks linked to ageing

    Sugary drinks linked to ageing

    Drinking sugary soft drinks may accelerate biological ageing as much as smoking, a study has found. The findings, from an analysis of thousands of DNA samples, suggested that sweet fizzy drinks had worse effects on health than merely promoting...

  • Breast cancer and lifestyle factors

    Breast cancer and lifestyle factors

    October is breast cancer awareness month and it is therefore appropriate that we look into any claims of possible connections between dietary factors and this cancer. Breast (and prostate) cancer are hormonally driven and typical examples of...

  • Fighting depression and anxiety

    Fighting depression and anxiety

    A couple of weeks ago, I discussed a view of depression. I looked at how the past can affect and influence depression and life expectancy and also at how materially-rich people such as Hollywood actor Robin Williams are not satisfied with their...

  • Go for quality over quantity

    Go for quality over quantity

    Quality over quantity. It’s a compelling philosophy, indeed, and one on which I am well and truly sold. Regular readers might recall some of my prior anecdotes singing the praises of quality over quantity when it comes to individual exercise...

  • Spectacles or lenses?

    Spectacles or lenses?

    A good number of people might opt not to wear spectacles even if they need them badly. Stephanie Fsadni learns about the possible repercussions and what one should do when wearing their alternatives, contact lenses. Over 50 per cent of the...

  • I spy with my ‘little eye’…

    I spy with my ‘little eye’…

    New guests to a bright and bustling world, children learn a lot in the first few years of life merely by seeing the world around them. For this reason it is essential to be well aware of some of the most common problems that arise with eyesight...

  • Progressive lenses

    Progressive lenses

    At around the age of 40, when the accommodative power of the eyes noticeably decreases, most people start to have difficulty focusing at close range. A higher dioptric power in the ‘plus’ direction is required to remedy this problem. Single vision...

  • A ‘not too sweet’ vision

    A ‘not too sweet’ vision

    Diabetic retinopathy progresses through several stages, with the most advanced stage possibly leading to blindness. Consultant diabetologist Sandro Vella tells Stephanie Fsadni about the causes and complications of this disease, and how regular...

  • A global action plan

    A global action plan

    Eighty per cent of the causes of visual impairment are preventable and curable. If just the two major causes of impairment were addressed, two-thirds of the visually impaired could recover good eyesight, the World Health Organisation says. The...

  • Choosing the right eyewear

    The majority of people may think that the most important aspect of choosing eyeglasses or sunglasses is how they look with them. However, other factors are to be considered too, says Celia Melillo, managing dispensing optician at O’Hea Opticians...

  • Living with nystagmus

    Living with nystagmus

    Claire Caruana meets a young woman who has an eye condition called nystagmus which impairs her vision but not her determination to succeed in life. At 25, Solange Abela shows great determination not to let an eye condition impede her from leading...

  • Beware of low autumn sunshine

    A campaign was launched during the British National Eye Health Week (NEHW) last month to raise awareness of the dangers of unprotected sun exposure in autumn and help prevent future, avoidable, sight loss. David Cartwright, chair of NEHW, explains...

  • Study supports rapid weight loss

    Study supports rapid weight loss

    Slimmers should forget what they have been told about avoiding rapid weight loss in favour of slow but sure dieting, according to research. The latest evidence suggests the idea that shedding too many kilos too fast leads to a cycle of ‘yo-yo’...

  • Ebola’s ‘collateral damage’

    Ebola’s ‘collateral damage’

    ‘Ebola collateral damage’ is the term used by Thaim Kamara, chief of surgery at Connaught Hospital in Sierra Leone’s capital Freetown, to describe the disruption of routine patient care caused by the epidemic. “Since the outbreak took its first...

  • ‘No time to cry’

    ‘No time to cry’

    When I see the footage of health workers in protection suits taking up the fight against Ebola in West Africa, memories come flooding back. Nine years ago, I took a Reuters team into the heart of another haemorrhagic fever catastrophe, the 2005...

  • Hot flushes, gum disease, olive oil and dementia

    Hot flushes, gum disease, olive oil and dementia

    Hot flushes are a major inconvenience to many women’s lives. A review of 12 studies involving 869 women has found that acupuncture can help reduce their frequency and intensity during menopause (Journal of North American Menopause Society). The...

  • Unexpected exercise

    Unexpected exercise

    Sometimes we find inspiration where we least expect to. Sometimes help comes from the most unlikely of sources. We all know life can take sudden and unexpected twists and turns. While we do our best to plan and prepare for the challenges we create...

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