Body Sense

Winter 2011

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BODY TALK COMPILED BY JED HENEBERRY Think Your Way to Health Hungry? Thinking about health before you eat can help you make healthier choices, say researchers at the California Institute of Technology. When prompted to think of the healthiness of food, subjects of a Diet Down Diabetes Science has found one more use for the peanut, as patients with type 2 diabetes improved their glycemic control and reduced LDL cholesterol (the "bad" cholesterol) after substituting a daily dose of 2 ounces of nuts for an equivalent amount of carbohydrates. The study, which appears in Diabetes Care, attributes the improvement to high levels of mono- and polyunsaturated oils and protein found in most nuts, including peanuts and almonds. The National Institutes of Health estimates that diabetes, which can cause blindness, heart disease, kidney failure, poor circulation, stroke, and death, affects more than 25 million Americans. recent study said no to unhealthy foods more often and showed increased activity in the portion of the brain believed to be responsible for self-control. The subjects, who were required to fast for three hours, even chose healthy food that they felt wasn't tasty. The study, which suggests this phenomenon could extend to smoking and other behaviors, was published in the Journal of Neuroscience. Coffee May Cut Depression You know that pick-me-up cup you get from a cup of joe? Harvard University researchers say it could last a lot longer than you think. A recent study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine found that women who consumed two or three cups of caffeinated coffee each day reduced their risk of depression by 15 percent; the risk decreased by 20 percent for those who drank more than four cups daily. The study followed 50,000 participants for a period of 10 years and focused on caffeine intake strictly from coffee, not other sources. Researchers caution that coffee should not be considered a cure for depression, but they suggest it doesn't hurt.

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