In today's health news:
It's well-known that clogged arteries can lead to a heart attack, but now a new study links them definitively to another serious condition: stroke. Research appearing in a journal named, appropriately, Stroke, found that among a patient pool of nearly 4,200, 92 strokes occurred. Among those victims, artery blockage was significantly higher than it was in their counterparts who didn't have a stroke.
Nearly 25 percent of breast cancer patients have symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder shortly after their diagnosis, says a new study. HealthDay reports that the risk of PTSD is 50 percent higher among black and Asian women than it is among white women, and that young women are more likely than older women to have post-diagnosis PTSD symptoms.
A study that looked at more than 1,000 high school sophomores, most of whom were black or Latino, found that more than 20 percent of them reported sending a nude or semi-nude photo or video or sexual text-only message at least once. The Los Angeles Times adds that more than 30 percent reported receiving one. Young black men and women were more likely than Latino males to sext, and young Latina women were found to be the least likely to partake.
A new poll suggests that one in five U.S. residents knows a victim of gun violence, reports HealthDay – and four in 10 are worried about becoming one. Most of the 20 percent who said they knew a victim said it was a family member, good friend or themselves.
A Taiwanese study has found that maintaining good eating habits can help people with dementia stay depression-free. According to MedPage Today, the authors wrote that the "improvement in nutritional status may have led to reduced fatigue and increased vitality," which in turn, kept patients from feeling a sense of hopelessness or worthlessness.
Eating junk food during pregnancy may not be the best idea, suggests a new study appearing in the FASEB Journal. Basing their findings on tests on rats, researchers said when pregnant mothers eat junk food, the food causes chemical changes to the unborn baby's brain, giving them a higher "tolerance" for junk food. Once they're born, researchers said, they'll need more of it to be satisfied.
Think before you ink: HealthDay cites experts and has safety recommendations for anyone who's considering getting a tattoo. Among them: Go to a professional, licensed tattoo parlor; tell the tattoo artist if you have a skin reaction afterward; and don't get tattoos over moles.
Despite its cartoonish portrayal, sleepwalking is serious. That's according to research appearing in the aptly-titled journal SLEEP, which says sleepwalking may induce fatigue, insomnia, sleepiness, depression and anxiety in those who do it. The study looked at 100 sleepwalking patients; among them, about 23 percent sleepwalked nightly and about 44 percent did so weekly. Almost one in five had experienced at least one sleepwalking episode that ended with injuries to the sleepwalker or her or his bed partner that required medical attention.
Good news for pessimists: New research says older folks who have low expectations for a satisfying future may have a higher likelihood of living longer. The Huffington Post quotes the lead author: "Our findings revealed that being overly optimistic in predicting a better future was associated with a greater risk of disability and death within the following decade." It's almost enough to make the glass seem half-empty.
And finally, ABCNews.com reports on what was hopefully a very carefully-worded study: Researchers say one reason today's women may be heavier is because they're doing less housework. In 1965, women spent nearly 26 hours a week doing household chores; in 2010, that average had fallen to a little over 13 hours. As the lead author said, the intent of the study was not to tell women that they "should be doing more housework, but rather that women and individuals in general should find ways of integrating physical activity into their day."
Photo by Alex Ragone via Flickr Creative Commons.