Hello and welcome to our weekly round-up of news, views and stats from the world of Health Insurance and Health in general. Our aim is to give you a snapshot of what has been happening in the Health scene in the past 7 days, as reported by the National Media.
There could be a super-simple way to lose weight that doesn't involve diet or exercise – Independent
- Scientists are beginning to get a better picture about the role that drinking water plays in weight loss
- A new study being presented this week at the Society for the Study of Ingestive Behavior looked at how different amounts of water interacted with the brain.
- Of those who drank more water, the participants' hunger was more suppressed and they felt more full than those who had only a gulp of water.
Artificial light could be making us prematurely frail – Independent
- Artificial lighting could be making us frail, withering muscles and making bones more fragile, according to a new study.
- “Our study … showed that the absence of environmental rhythms leads to severe disruption of a wide variety of health parameters.” Said Professor Johanna Meijer, of Leiden University Medical Centre in The Netherlands,
- The researchers said that light exposure should be taken into consideration, particularly for elderly and vulnerable people.
Diet success depends on your genes, study finds – Independent
- There is no perfect diet that can help anyone maintain a healthy weight, scientists have said, after carrying out a study which suggests food affects individual animals differently based on their genes.
- One of the researchers, Dr William Barrington, of North Carolina State University, said: “There is an overgeneralization of health benefits or risks tied to certain diets.
- “Our study showed that the impact of the diet is likely dependent on the genetic composition of the individual eating the diet, meaning that different individuals have different optimal diets.”
Japanese may soon need to work until 80 as population ages – Independent
- The situation could provide a cautionary tale for workers in Europe, including the UK, who face similar pressures
- Economists say if Japan wants to alleviate its worsening labour shortage, it needs a whole lot more people like Mr Suzuki, who is atypical by working into his Seventies.
- With the world’s longest life expectancy — by 2050 women in the country on average will live past 90 — and a low birth rate, the working-age population is shrinking.
Over 40s now having more babies than under 20s - Telegraph
- Women over the age of 40 are now having more babies than those under 20 years old for the first time since the 1947 post-war baby boom.
- The figures also reflect the long-term decline in the teenage pregnancy rate, which has almost halved from its level of 33 births per 1,000 teenagers in 1990.
- The average age to have a child is now 30, a figure that has been increasing since 1975.
Sugar-free drinks may increase calorie cravings, say scientists – Telegraph
- Sugar-free drinks could do more harm than good because the body craves the missing calories, which prompts people to eat more, a new study suggests.
- Although many diet drinks and snacks are designed to help people cut calories, instead they fail to fully activate the reward centre of the brain which normally switches on feelings of fullness and satisfaction.
- Scientists at the University of Sydney believe that the brain becomes confused when it senses sweetness which is not attached to calories and so triggers feelings of hunger.
Should happiness be part of the school curriculum? - Telegraph
- Happiness lessons could help children lead healthier psychological lives
- The key idea is to teach good practices such as mindfulness and gratitude that will promote resilience and, it is thought, help children lead healthier psychological lives.
- Until recently, these might have been dismissed as woolly theories but with children’s happiness now in the spotlight owing to high levels of self-harm, attempted suicide and other mental health problems, they are starting to be taken more seriously.
Obesity 'puts men at greater risk of early death' – BBC News
- Being overweight or obese puts men at a greater risk of dying prematurely than women, the largest ever study on obesity and death suggests.
- Scientists say though the reasons behind the trend are unclear, the study supports others that suggest obese men are at higher risk of diabetes and have higher levels of dangerous liver fat.
- The authors say second to smoking, obesity is the most significant cause of death in Europe and North America.