Research suggests that up to 5% of the elderly population, age 70 and above, may suffer from a type of memory loss called mild cognitive impairment. This estimate is worse than any previous year according to a researching team at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. Dr. Ronald Petersen, the neurologist who led the study stated, “If we extrapolate these findings to the baby boomers, who are aging into the period of risk, we’re talking about a significant number of individuals who may become cognitively impaired in the very near future.” The number of elderly adults that have mild cognitive impairment has increased to an alarmingly higher rate than previously anticipated. More here
Research published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society states high blood pressure can effect your walking speed. Researchers were aware that older adults with high blood pressure were not as likely to function as well as adults without high blood pressure. Studies also have shown that adults with the condition run higher risks of becoming physically impaired as they age. Researchers from the University of Pittsburgh and the University of Washington in Seattle conducted a study that may give proof that high blood pressure can actually slow walking speed over the course of time. More here
Recent research published in BioMed Central’s open access journal Critical Care, showed that 5% of Medicare patients, age 66 and older treated in the ICU, Intensive Care Unit in 2005, later received a diagnosis of dementia. Over the next 3 years, survey participants’ health and medical records continued to be watched closely. The survey confirmed that infections, acute dialysis, severe sepsis and neurological dysfunctions have all been associated with the risk of subsequent diagnosis of dementia as well as age, race and sex. Dr Hannah Wunsch, from Columbia University Medical Center, lead author of the study stated, “Our study provides a greater understanding of the consequences of these hospitalizations on subsequent risk of receiving a diagnosis of dementia, and may allow for better planning and targeting future studies to high risk populations.” More here
A new independent study at the University of Michigan Medical School has found a way to slow down the process of aging skin. Scientists have been successful making senior citizens skin cells act much younger. The U-M Department of Dermatology tested 21 volunteers in their 80s using a cosmetic filler called fibroblast in an attempt to decrease the signs of aging. After three months, the fibroblast used in the test began to produce more levels of collagen in the skin, skin became thicker and more blood vessels were visible in the volunteers. More here
Symptoms of cardiovascular disease such as heart attacks can be brought upon when blockage occurs in the arteries. Every year approximately 610,000 American endure their first heart attack, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. A study from the University of Missouri discovered a defense to fight arterial blockage. Bilirubin, a drug usually used to treat newborns that have been diagnosed with jaundice may now bring hope for many people who suffer from cardiovascular disease. More here
A new study shows that air pollution in the United States is decreasing, and in result the life expectancy of Americans is predicted to grow. Harvard School of Public Health researchers have correlated longer life spans with lower amounts of air pollution. The Harvard School of Public Health study’s lead author Andrew Correia, a doctoral candidate in the department of biostatistics, stated “Despite the fact that the U.S. population as a whole is exposed to much lower levels of air pollution than 30 years ago because of great strides made to reduce people’s exposure, it appears that further reductions in air pollution levels would continue to benefit public health.” Researchers also found that being exposed to small particles with a diameter up to 2.5 micrometers, can be affiliated with cardiopulmonary disease and death. More here
A study in the Canadian Medical Association Journal states that compounds in grapefruit can dramatically change how certain drugs react in the body. The number of drugs that carried severe side effects when mixed with grapefruit has more than doubled in the last four years. David Bailey, a pharmacologist at the Lawson Health Research Institute in London, Ontario explains how the mixture of grapefruit juice and certain drugs have proved to be very serious, causing what has been described as an overdose effect. A clinical trial that Bailey and his colleagues preformed found 85 drugs that can interact with grapefruit juice, Lipitor, a common cholesterol reducer is among the 85 drugs. more here.
According to recent research from the University of Michigan, people who take statins have a lower risk of developing open-angle glaucoma. Statins are commonly prescribed to help lower cholesterol but have also been found to have protective effects in diseases affecting the central nervous system, such as multiple sclerosis. The study, which examined data on 524,109 patients, found that the longer a person used statins, the lower their risk of developing glaucoma became. In fact, after a year of using statins, the risk dropped by 4.0 percent. Two years of statin use was associated with an 8.0 percent decrease. More here.
Ginger has long been known for its health benefits, which include everything from helping with digestion to fighting the growth and spread of both colorectal and ovarian cancer. But ginger also has anti-inflammatory properties which can benefit people suffering from osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. A recent study from the University of Miami found individuals who were given a highly concentrated ginger extract experienced a 40 percent reduction in pain and stiffness in their knee joints. Adding grated ginger to salads and stir fry is one way to increase your consumption, though there are also supplements and powders available. More here and here.
Conventional wisdom often links aging to sleep problems. And, according to recent research, sleeplessness can raise the risk of everything from hypertension to diabetes. But though that may seem like a reason for older adults to be concerned, a new study from the University of Pittsburgh’s Sleep and Chronobiology Center and University Center for Social and Urban Research found that seniors aren’t having as much trouble sleeping as as assumed and sleep trouble may have more to do with poor health than age. The study surveyed 1,200 retired seniors. Results showed that 75 percent of respondents reported sleeping more than 6.75 hours a night and just 25 percent reported sleeping less than that. Timothy H. Monk, Ph.D., the study’s lead author, said the stereotype of seniors going to bed early and having trouble staying asleep is inaccurate. More here.