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Sunday, 12 Apr, 2009

Offbeat

Mathematical Formula Of Happily Married Couples Invented

Scientists invented a mathematical model, which can predict with a surprising exactity which married couples will divorce and which ones won't.

The formula, created by a group of researchers (a specialist in Psychology and 2 auxiliary specialists in Mathematics), allows predicting with a 94-per-cent exactity whether a couple will divorce or not. According to John Gottman, a psychologist at the University of Washington in Seattle, it is enough to observe for some minutes how partners discuss a subject they have different opinions on, such as sex, money, children or traveling for example.

Points were calculated for all the positive and negative signals between the partners during their conversation. Jokes, coquettish and affectionate gestures, smiles and tender intonations are positive signals, while sarcasm, ironical gestures etc are negative signals. The ideal proportion is the one that includes 5 positive signals against 1 negative signal. It isn't excluded that the couple who doesn't reach the upper mentioned proportion has a greater risk of experiencing unpleasant consequences – this was the conclusion made by Mr. Gottman at the conference of the American Association of Collaboration towards Science Development in Seattle.

"When happily married couples talk about important things, they may be contradicting one another, but, at the same time, they will be laughing and teasing each other, thus the signs of their affection will be easily seen, since partners have established emotional links", Gottman says.

However, many people don't know how to contact correctly with each other, which means that many discussions amoung couples take place because they aren't capable of establishing these emotional links.

The mathematical formula is based on a study made on approximately 700 newly married couples from Seattle. Scientists observed these couples since the day of their wedding and continued to study them for the next 10 years. The participants involved in the experiment were not aware of the study's results.


Saturday, 11 Apr, 2009

Health & Fitness

Sexual Red Wine Therapy

The useful properties of red wine, (with the condition that it is consumed in moderate quantities), had been known for a long time.

The results of the new research showed that red wine is a wonderful aphrodisiac.

Unfortunately for the "strong sex", the effects of this aphrodisiac are valuable only for representatives of feminine sex. According to the co-workers of Santa Maria Nuova hospital in Florence, the study proved that women feel a greater sexual desire when they regularly drink a certain portion of red wine.

The research involved the analysis of 789 Italian women, aged between 18 and 50. Simple observances, accompanied by quite open confessions of the participants, had showed that women who drink one or two glasses of red wine daily are more active in their sexual life than those women who refuse consuming alcoholic drinks. Scientists still are unable to fully explain the effect of red wine as an aphrodisiac.

Scientists say that the same stimulating properties are characteristic for dark chocolate.


Monday, 06 Apr, 2009

Health & Fitness

Women After Delivery Become More Energetic

American scientists from the University of Richmond proved that pregnancy makes women more rapid and more energetic even after 20 years or more years after the delivery.

This phenomenon can be easily explained. During pregnancy and delivery, the organism of a woman secretes a significant quantity of hormones which lead to certain changes in the brain. As a result, women, who become mothers, have a better sight, a better coordination and a better memory. Similar processes are characteristic for animals too. The authors of the research consider that it is the work of nature that assured to make it easier for a mother to take care of her baby.

According to scientific calculations, a woman can use the "advantages" of her pregnancy till she is 80.

It is considered that the establishment of a relation between the changes of the hormonal background after the pregnancy and the level of the brain's activeness will allow a woman improve and significantly increase the effectiveness of the traditional substitution hormonal therapy.


Monday, 06 Apr, 2009

Health & Fitness

Man Had Been Living 30 Years With Three-Centimeters-Long Tack In His Nose

Doctors in one of the clinics in Colorado, United States, discovered a tack in the nose of one of the patients. What is really amazing is that the tack has been in the man's nose for almost 30 years.

The old Prax Sanches felt a sharp pain under the right eye while he was passing Magnetic Resonance Tomography. After the examination was interrupted, the man had spit a tack that had the length of almost 3 centimeters.

Before the Magnetic Resonance Tomography doctors analyzed the radiograms made to Sanches and noticed a metallic object in the nasal cavity of the patient. The magnetic field, generated by the tomography, moved the metallic tack from its place, allowing the man to spit it.

The patient said that he had no idea how the tack had entered his nose. The doctor Jamieson Kennedy considers that the tack entered the nasal cavity of his patient approximately 30 years ago and that a capsule of conjunctive tissue was formed around it.


Monday, 06 Apr, 2009

Health & Fitness

Drinking Chocolate Is Healthier Than Eating It

It is a lot healthier to drink hot chocolate than to eat the chocolate itself, latest researches show. According to the Finnish official medical portal Uutispalvelu Duodeci, consuming cocoa decreases the risk of cardiovascular diseases, because this product contains flavonoides, first of all epicatehine, which are capable to lower the negative influence of free oxygen radicals in the organism. Cocoa is one of the best sources of flavonoides, equal to citric fruits, some other fruits and berries, and also onion, green tea and red wine.

At the same time, Finnish doctors affirm that, in hard chocolate, which average European people eat from 4.5kg to 9kg per year, the concentration of flavonoides is decreased in comparison with hot chocolate, because most of it is destroyed once cocoa is processed. Besides, hard chocolate has a large quantity of sugar and milk, which can lead to extraweight and other negative consequences.

Several years ago, specialists from the universities of Helsinki and Oulu have come to the conclusion that people who like bitter dark chocolate suffer less from diabetes than other people of the same age, who are indifferent to this product. Besides, studies have shown that "chocolate enjoyers" feel healthier and happier than the rest of people. They are full of optimism and are more willing to make plans for their lives – chocolate's property of secreting "happiness hormones" in the organism is not a secret anymore. Investigations made in different age and social groups have also proved that these properties help permanent chocolate consumers to reach better results in their studies.


Sunday, 05 Apr, 2009

Health & Fitness

Peaceful Music Is Useful For Health

Listening to favourite and peaceful music positively influences the state of the cardiovascular system, scientists report.

According to a news study, specialists have discovered that endothelium (a layer of cells on the inner surface of the blood vessels) influences emotions. It plays an important role in the regulation of the blood circulation, coagulation and its viscosity. More than that, endothelium is the layer on which the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases mostly depends, medicinform.net reports.

During the experiment, the participants had to listen to different types of music, beginning with merry and calming music and finishing with alarming and loud one. It turned out that the blood vessels were dilated 4 times more actively in those who listened to the first type of music, a fact which had a positive influence on the state of the cardiovascular system in its turn, in comparison with those who listened to loud and alarming music. That's why, specialists advise listening to calm and quiet music, thus improving health in the same time.


Sunday, 05 Apr, 2009

Health & Fitness

Fighting Cholesterol Lowers Pleasure From Sex

One of the newest researches has shown that pleasure from sex is directly proportional to the level of cholesterol in the blood. Popular medicines based on statin not only lower the level of cholesterol in the blood, but also trouble the patients' capacity of enjoying sex, Beatrice Holomb from the Medical Faculty of the University of California – San-Diego, reports.

As a result of her 6-months-long research it turned out that this side-effect is mostly expressed in men: the most efficient medicine, based on simvastatin, has lowered the sharpness of their sexual feelings by almost 2 times. Pravastatin, in its turn, practically doesn't influence sexual life, but it isn't so efficient in fighting with cholesterol.

Scientists have different opinions on the subject of the origin of this side-effect: Holomb relates it to the statins' property of decreasing the concentration of coenzyme Q10, while the neurobiologist Barry Komisaruk considers that it is caused by the chemical processes in the brain, processes needed to be studied further.


Sunday, 05 Apr, 2009

Health & Fitness

Everyone Has an Individual Speed Of Running

If during morning jogging your body tells you to slow down, it is better to obey. Scientists proved that the effectiveness of running depends on the speed developed and every person has his or her optimal rhythm, which allows winning over a big distance with minimal efforts.

Respectively, high speed doesn't always increase metabolism rate – the quantity of energy consumed by our body. Thus, according to Karen Studel, a professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, if you want to run a long distance, it is necessary to choose an optimal rhythm to balance the metabolism rate.

In order to determine the most effective speed, scientists have measured the levels of metabolism judging by the number of times the participants in the experiment went round the running path. This means approximately 8.3 miles per hour for men and 6.5 miles per hour for women. The difference is caused by the length of legs and the size of waistline. In other words, tall people have higher speed.

It is interesting to note that the speed of 4.5 miles per hour or 13 minutes per mile was the most efficient. For example, a very quick walking and a very slow running weren't useful to the body.

Scientists have also established that heigh people along with those with a wide chest and a thin waistline are more likely to move faster.


Monday, 30 Mar, 2009

Health & Fitness

Subway Trips Are Useful For Our Health

The public transport may not be very comfortable, but it is useful. At least this is what Canadian scientists say about subway trips: they replace the daily dose of physical exercises.

Scientists from the British Columbian University in Canada carried out an experiment with 4,156 people. Among them there were people, who have their own cars and also people who daily use public transport. Results show that people, who travel by bus, subway, street railway and other kinds of public transport, make a three-time bigger physical effort in comparison to those who drive their own cars - a statement that complies with the daily dose of physical effort, established by the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada.

The authors of the research, who published their results in the Journal of Public Health Policy, affirm that 30 minutes of walk 5 days a week is a good way to keep a good physical shape. "The concept of attending gyms for receiving the necessary dose of physical exercises is wrong. Such short walks during the day are historically made up types of physical activity. But, unfortunately, we have removed this activity out of our lives", says Laurence Frank - one of the University's professors.

According to the scientists, it is not necessary to try to reorganize the society and to make big investments in advertising a healthy lifestyle. There are some things, which we can do in our spare time, like: driving a car for less time and living in a way that could make us more active, and which, would reduce the quantity of polluting gases.

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Monday, 30 Mar, 2009

Health & Fitness

Success Obtained In Fight Against Cancer

More and more people diagnosed with tumors in Europe can cured. At the same time, their longevity was not affected.

The number of patients cured from cancer is in continuous rising in Europe. This fact is proved by the statistics gathered and analyzed by the European Oncological Organization. They say that the chances for the treatment of the disease were mostly increased in patients with lung cancer, stomach cancer and cancer of the intestines.

Thus, during the last decade of the 20th century, the number of people cured from pulmonary cancer had risen from 6 to 8 percent, those cured from stomach cancer – from 15 to 18 percent and the percentage of the ones cured from cancer of intestines had increased from 42 to 49 percent. It is worth mentioning that the expected longevity in these patients was the same as the longevity in other people.

Researchers analyzed the histories of the disease in more than 13.5 million people who were diagnosed cancer in the period betweem 1978 and 2002. However, scientists have noticed the big diversity of statistical data in different countries. The worst is in Poland, where the number of cured patients is only 21 percent among men and 38 percent among women. One of the leading countries in Europe for the number of cured men is Iceland (47 per cent) and for cured women – France and Finland (59 per cent).

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Sunday, 29 Mar, 2009

Health & Fitness

Aerobics Lowers Breast Cancer Risk

Scientists from the University of South Carolina proved that aerobic exercises decrease mortality caused by breast cancer by almost 3 times.

There were 14,000 women enrolled as volunteers in this experiment. All of them passed medical tests on physical resistance during the period between 1970 and 2001. During their first examination no tumors were found.

During the testing, scientists have divided women in 3 groups: of low, moderate and of high physical training. After that they have analyzed the previous results in 68 women who have died from breast cancer by 2003.

According to Steve Blair, the author of the research, women from the lowest category of physical training have 3 times more likely to die from breast cancer in comparison to high physical training women.

In order to reach a moderate level of physical training one needs to train approximately 150 minutes per week, and for reaching a high physical level – 300 minutes per week.

Researchers have also established the relation between physical activity and the lowering of such pathologic indices, as: high cholesterol level, high blood pressure, the risk of diabetes and of cardiovascular diseases.

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Saturday, 28 Mar, 2009

Health & Fitness

Why Is 22 Years The Best Age?

A 22-years-old human brain reaches its highest point in development and action, and, after that, it begins to degrade slowly, but irreversibly, American researchers believe.

If you plan to become an inventor, to discover the vaccine against AIDS or to find the eternal youth spring, you should do it before you reach 23 years old, because this is the age limit when your brain capacities start to decrease. These are the facts scientists from Virginia University, led by professor Timothy Salthouse, are sure of.

It took alot of time to find this limit age - "the cleverest age". Recently, other scientists from the University of California declared that the human intellect is mostly developed at 39 years. Our process of thinking accelerates till this age, the ability to think logically and to plan all our activities becomes better and better, and our memory and attention become stronger. After that, it's vice versa - the 40-years-old person practically starts to become sillier.

This verdict is not the best, but surely it's not as cruel as the one the Virginian doctors have made.

The conclusion on the latest study was made by scientists as a result of the following research: during 7 years Salthouse has been observing how 2000 people were passing through regular tests on their logical thinking, memory, the capacity of solving unusual crosswords and so on. Thus, 22-years-old people had the best scores in 9 out of 12 tests. After this limit, the results were becoming worse, they were decreasing proportionally with the increased age of the participants.

Fortunately, the scientists don't have other firm proofs. They haven't found yet physical or psychological reasons for the phenomenon they discovered, that's why they are going to continue their work.


Saturday, 28 Mar, 2009

Health & Fitness

The More You Drink The Less Pleasure You Receive From It

Canadian scientists carried out an experiment, during which they introduced an alcohol solution into rats of male sex, in the same time observing their levels of endorphins, encephalins and dinorphins (these biological active substances are responsible for the feeling of pleasure). Moderate or low doses of alcohol stimulate the production of beta-endorphins, while alcohol excess decreases their quantity in the organism.

It turned out that, under the influence of low doses of alcohol, rats had their levels of these opyoide brain neuropeptides increased, a fact that caused euphoria, but the level soon decreased after the doses of the drinks increased, MedicInform.net reports. A small dose of alcohol allows feeling euphoria, lowering anxiety and improving mood, while big doses of alcohol, along with their calming effects, have a hypnotic action, increasing restlessness, according to the author of the research.

Scientists advise that if after 2 glasses of an alcoholic drink mood isn't improved, it's better to stop drinking. This domain of studies on neuromediators is useful, because it can become a basis in the creation of a medicine against alcoholism. It isn't known yet how will a human organism act in such situation, that's why experts consider that further studies are necessary.


Wednesday, 25 Mar, 2009

Environment

Our Planet Will Have Less Sunny Days

Meteorological data, recorded for a period of more than 3 decades, shows that air pollution not only has a bad influence on planet's climate, but that it also covers the blue sky. Because of the increased concentration of solid particles and of the liquid drops in the atmosphere, the number of sunny days since 1970's has been reduced in the whole world, the specialists of Maryland University (USA) report.

Aerosols, including ashes, dust and carbon dioxide, are formed as a result of fuel combustion, burning of the tropical forests and industrial processes. The solid particles are very dangerous for human health and nature's equilibrium. As a result, every day is a new step towards the "gloomy zone", when the insufficiency of the sunlight will be felt not only in the cold season, but also during summers.

It's the first time now that experts acquire long term prognosis of the weather changes, based on the information they already had about the aerosols that now are part of the oceans' composition. Carbon dioxide and other types of polluting gases are transparent and have no influence on sky's visibility. Even though the consequences of polluting gases on Earth's climate were firmly appointed, scientists could not understand completely the role of aerosols. Now the ecologists consider that, along with the increase of the aerosols' quantity in the atmosphere, sky will become darker and the number of the sunny days will decrease. This is because these substances block the penetration of the sunlight on Earth's surface.

The stable growth of the concentration of aerosols has been studied since 1973 in a lot of high-industrialized countries.


Wednesday, 25 Mar, 2009

Health & Fitness

Optimism Improves Health

You see pink, when you are an optimistAccording to the results of an American research, optimists live longer and a lot healthier than pessimistic people do. The study which had lasted for almost 8 years had involved 100,000 women as volunteers. They were asked to describe their personality qualities, as medstream.com reports.

Those who said that they are optimistic rarely die from various causes, they have 30 per cent less chances to die from heart diseases. The group of women who were more pessimistic had a higher level of mortality, they had 23 per cent more chances to die from tumors.

The results received were presented at the annual meeting of the American Psychosomatic Society in Chicago.

Optimistic people react less to stress or, maybe, they just carry out with exactness all the recommendations of the doctors, thus preserving themselves. This was the opinion of Hillary Teandle, a professor at the Medicine department from the University of Pittsburgh.

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Wednesday, 25 Mar, 2009

Health & Fitness

Eat Less Meat And Live Longer

Corned beefAmerican scientists have received new information about the fact that excessive consumption of beef, pork and lamb increases the risk of death in a period of time of 10 years.

During their studies on cancer diseases, the group of researchers from the National American Institute have examined more than half a million of people and have published their results in the magazine "Archives of Internal Medicine".

Their results say that people who consumed circa 5.6 ounces (160 g) of red-coloured meat daily had a higher risk of dying from cancer or cardio-vascular diseases than those who consumed circa 0.9 ounces (25 g) per day, this quantity being equivalent to a slice of ham.

In their turn, people who were not consuming red meat at all, but only fish and paultry, had a lower risk of dying from cancer and cardio-vascular diseases.

According to the researchers, decreasing meat consumption could lower mortality with 11 per cent among men and with 16 per cent among women.

Scientists already know that cancerogenous substance couplings appear when meat is processed termically.

Meat also remains to be the main source of saturated fat acids, which participate in forming breast and colon tumors.

Besides, lowering meat consumption is usually related to positive changes of such factors of risk as high blood pressure and high cholesterol level.

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Tuesday, 24 Mar, 2009

Health & Fitness

Surgeon Finished His Surgical Operation Despite An Infarction He Had During It

Claudio Vitale, a surgeon from the clinic Cardarelli in Neapole, was able to finish the surgical operation on the brain of his patient even after he had suffered an infarction right in the surgery room, during the operation. The 59-years-old doctor had felt a sharp pain in the chest 30 minutes after the beginning of the surgical operation, but he decided to bring it to an end in spite the fact that his colleagues tried to persuade him to stop the operation.

The diagnosis of an infarction in Vitale was confirmed by the results of the blood analysis, taken during the short break they had in the surgery room. The operation, which involved the removal of a malignant tumor in the brain, had ended without complications, and now the state of the patient is satisfactory.

After the end of the operation the surgeon was hospitalized in the cardiological section of the same clinic, and a clot was removed from his coronary artery. In the nearest time Claudio Vitale plans to begin working again.

"I'm not a hero, I was just doing my job, it was my duty not to leave the patient alone in such an important moment", Vitale has declared in an interview to the newspaper La Repubblica.

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Monday, 23 Mar, 2009

Health & Fitness

Men Who Drink Coffee Have Less Sexual Cells

Scientists warn that contemporary lifestyle (coffee drinking, antidepressants consumption and the utilization of mobile telephones) leads to a decreased number of spermatozoa and to the worsening of their quality indices.

The study made by US scientists says that today a man's organism elaborates 3 time less spermatozoa than the organism of a mouse.

In average, the number of male sexual cells has decreased 2.5 times during the last 50 years, from 150 million per 1 ml of spermatic liquid to approximately 60 million per ml.

Scientists from the universities of Bradford and California have discovered genetic modifications in the sexual cells of men who consume caffeine in moderate doses. Similar lesions can bring about the death of the embryo or the birth of a baby with genetic diseases.

The research also shows that the quality of sperm in men worsens with the age. In additoin, in men who consume caffeine daily, the DNA of the sexual cells is more modified. This can increase the risk of defects and mutations, such as cancer and sterility, in their children. Scientists don't know yet how does caffeine bring to such an effect.

The cause of the quick and durable decreased indices of spermatozoa's number all over the world is a mystery too. The report of the American Society of Reproductive Medicine has proposed 2 hypotheses: the consumption of antidepressants and the long-lasting use of mobile telephones.

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Monday, 23 Mar, 2009

Health & Fitness

Scientists Will Create Artificial Blood

British scientists have begun a project for the creation of artificial blood from stem-cells – it will be able to be produced in unlimited quantities and without the need of donors. As specialists expect, the first transfusion of artificial blood will be made in a matter of 3 years.

This expensive project will involve the British National System of Health Security, the Scottish National Service of Blood Transfusion and Welcome Trust – the biggest charity fund for the support of medical researches.

In order to receive artificial blood it is planned to use embryo stem-cells capable of giving blood of universal group, suitable for transfusion to anyone.

Only 7 per cent of donors have such blood group, but in laboratory conditions it can be obtained from stem-cells in any quantity – such cells can divide unlimitedly.

The advantages of the project are obvious. Artificial blood will be easy of access, it will help in saving many lives: for example, in war, when the reserves of common donor blood end quickly.

Besides, artificial blood will be harmless in transfusion – it won't be a way of virus transmission.

In the same time, blood creation from human embryos brings about an unsolvable ethical question: can embryos be destroyed for the creation of stem-cells? Theoretically, an embryo can assure with blood all the country.

Similar projects exist in Switzerland, France and Australia.

Last year, coworkers of the American company Advanced Cell Technology have announced that they succeeded in obtaining billions of functional erythrocytes from stem-cells.

The American research, however, had stopped because of finance problems: during the presidentship of George Bush the state was forbidden to give money for projects related to stem-cells.


Saturday, 21 Mar, 2009

Health & Fitness

Psychological Tiredness Leads to Body Exhaustion

Psychological strain leads to physical tiredness and troubles the fulfillment of daily work and professional responsibilities. British specialists have noticed that, even if active intellectual effort doesn't influence the functions of heart and muscles, it causes a serious harm to physical capabilities of the body.

In a test, researchers from the University of Bangor in Wales (Great Britain) have offered the participants to ride a bicycle until they get physically tired. Until then, they had to solve cognitive problems for 90 minutes. The problems required a good memory, a quick reaction and the ability to give an immediate answer. It turned out that brain activity before the physical effort increases the probability of excessive tiredness by approximately 15 percent. People who have carried out these tasks reported lack of energy and "mist in the head" – symptoms frequently met in patients with the syndrome of chronic tiredness.

Apart from the normal physiological reactions, the exhaustion of psychological capabilities has a negative influence on body functions too. According to neurologists, the physical potential of the organism exhausts quicker in a constant intellectual strain. They say that psychological tiredness slows down brain activity.


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