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Talking to parents may get college students to eat healthier
Date: 2013-05-16 14:44:56

It's not just middle-aged and older adults who should use cholesterol testing tools to determine if they have healthy levels, but people of all ages. That's because high cholesterol can strike at any age, particularly for individuals who have a family history of poor cholesterol levels or those who follow an unhealthy diet, like many college students. Recently, researchers from Penn State University set out to determine how college students could be convinced to improve their notoriously fat-filled diets.

The scientists discovered that on days when students talk to their parents, they tend to consume more fruits and vegetables than on days when they do not. This suggests that encouraging greater communication between parents and students may be the key to getting young people to eat better.

Parents know best... Full Story

Fight off the effects of junk food on the brain with omega-3s
Date: 2013-05-14 12:26:51

Individuals who use cholesterol testing kits and discover that their levels are less than ideal should look for ways to replace the saturated fats in their diets with healthy fats. For example, omega-3 fatty acids, which are found in many foods and fish oil supplements, have been shown to potentially help people lower their cholesterol levels. Recently, researchers from the University of Liverpool's Institute of Aging and Chronic Disease found that these fats may have another benefit - they could help protect the brain.

The scientists discovered that omega-3s may be able to minimize the negative impact that junk food can have on the brain, giving people yet another reason to consider adding these fats to their diets.

Bad for the brain... Full Story

People shed pounds when money is at stake
Date: 2013-05-08 12:39:14

Many people may need a little motivation in order to get into shape. Maybe it will take the results of a lab test showing that they have high cholesterol or an increased risk of heart disease, or maybe they will have to experience a heart attack before they finally decide to get fit. According to a recent report from the University of Michigan Health System and Stanford University, one way to encourage people to take better care of themselves could be to make them pay money if they don't.

In recent years, some health insurance companies have begun charging obese people more for their policies. The researchers discovered that while this move may have been controversial, it has also shown to be effective.

Money makes a difference... Full Story

Research confirms that fast food is still bad for you
Date: 2013-05-07 12:04:04

For years, fast food was known as the worst type of food a person could consume, since it is so packed with fat and sugar. In recent years, there has been an effort within the fast food industry to offer healthier options on their menus. However, this doesn't mean that people who eat these foods regularly aren't in need of blood tests to check their cholesterol levels. According to recent research funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's Healthy Eating Research program, fast food menus are only slightly healthier than they were years ago, and much improvement is still needed.

The report also discovered that more than 25 percent of American adults eat fast food two or more times a week. Clearly, it's important for people to know what they are putting into their bodies when they consume these potentially unhealthy foods.

Improvements are slow and small ... Full Story

Could cholesterol-lowering drugs help men beat cancer?
Date: 2013-05-06 15:09:41

People who get regular blood tests and lab tests may be more likely to catch and treat health problems like high cholesterol or even cancer. While these two conditions may not seem directly related, recent evidence suggests that there may be a strong association between the two. According to scientists from the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, men with prostate cancer who took cholesterol-lowering statin drugs were less likely to die of cancer than those who did not take the pills.

To come to their conclusions, the scientists examined 1,000 Seattle-area prostate cancer patients. About 30 percent of the study participants said that they were on statins to help lower their cholesterol. When the researchers followed up with these individuals eight years later, they found that the risk of death was significantly reduced in the men who took the statins.

Help cholesterol and cancer?... Full Story

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