The Sleep Pattern Linked To Better Health

The sleep pattern is linked to eating more healthy foods and having steadier eating patterns.

The sleep pattern is linked to eating more healthy foods and having steadier eating patterns.

Early risers tend to be more healthy in comparison to night owls, new research finds.

People who prefer to rise early and go to bed early eat more healthy foods, like fruits and vegetables, and they have steadier eating patterns.

Night owls, though, tend to consume more sugar, alcohol and fast food.

Night owls are more likely to suffer from both heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

Dr Suzana Almoosawi, the study’s first author, said:

“We have found that your genes, ethnicity and gender determine the likelihood of you being a morning or evening type.

In adulthood, being an evening chronotype is associated with greater risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes, and this may be potentially due to the poorer eating behaviour and diet of people with evening chronotype.

Our review also found that people who have a poorer control of their diabetes are more likely to be evening types.”

One way of shifting towards being a morning person is to get outside more.

Daylight exposure is linked to earlier sleep and waking.

Dr Almoosawi said:

“In teenagers, we also find that evening chronotype is related to more erratic eating behaviour and poorer diet.

This could have important implications to health in adulthood as most dietary habits are established in adolescence.”

The conclusions come from a review of many different studies on nutrition and sleep.

Dr Leonidas G Karagounis, study co-author, said:

“…studies suggest that an evening chronotype is associated with lower intake of fruits and vegetables, and higher intake of energy drinks, alcoholic, sugary and caffeinated beverages, as well as higher energy intake from fat.

Further research on the best methods to assess an individual’s chronotype and how this may affect their long-term cardiometabolic health can potentially guide the development of health promotion strategies aimed at preventing and treating chronic diseases based on an individual’s chronotype.”

The study was published in the journal Advances in Nutrition (Almoosawi et al., 2018).

The Reason Sugary Drinks Are Hard To Quit (S)

Sugary drinks are drunk by over half of US adults every day.

Sugary drinks are drunk by over half of US adults every day.

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The Worst Weight Loss Technique Is Used By 50% Of People

Large decade-long study reveals what works best long-term in weight management.

Large decade-long study reveals what works best long-term in weight management.

Dieting is not the answer to effective weight management, new research concludes.

Indeed, people who carefully control what they eat put on more weight in the long-term, the large 10-year study found.

It is far better to avoid dieting and simple eat regular healthy meals.

Taking care of one’s psychological well-being is also important, as is finding a sense of meaning in life.

These are the conclusions of a Finnish study that followed over 4,900 people for a decade.

The results showed that almost everyone gained weight between the ages of 24 and 34 — around 1kg per year.

Men and women who dieted and had irregular eating habits put on more weight over the decade.

It is thought around 50% of adults are dieting at any one time.

Ms Ulla Kärkkäinen, the study’s first author, said:

“Often, people try to prevent and manage excess weight and obesity by dieting and skipping meals.

In the long term, such approaches seem to actually accelerate getting fatter, rather than prevent it.”

In addition, women who were unhappy with their life and who drank more sugary drinks also put on more weight.

For men, smoking was a risk factor for putting on more weight.

Ms Ulla Kärkkäinen, the study’s first author, said:

“Generally speaking, weight management guidance often boils down to eating less and exercising more.

In practice, people are encouraged to lose weight, whereas the results of our extensive population study indicate that losing weight is not an effective weight management method in the long run.

Prior research has shown that approximately every other adult is constantly dieting.

According to the National Institute for Health and Welfare, nearly a million Finns diet every year.

Even though dieting may seem a logical solution to weight management problems, it can actually increase weight gain and eating problems in the long run.”

The study was published in the journal Eating Behaviors (Kärkkäinen et al., 2018).

The Diet Linked To Drug-Like Withdrawal Symptoms

Irritability, depressed mood and tiredness peaked two to three days after giving up.

Irritability, depressed mood and tiredness peaked two to three days after giving up.

People trying to quit junk food experience drug-like withdrawal symptoms, new research finds.

In the first two to five days of giving up pizza, French fries and pastries, people experience irritability, sadness, tiredness and cravings.

The withdrawal symptoms likely make it hard for people to give up these highly processed foods that often contain large amounts of sugar.

People trying to quit junk food may benefit from some of the same strategies that drug addicts use.

Whether it is better to slowly taper off the junk food or suddenly go ‘cold turkey’, though, is not yet known.

The conclusions come from a study that asked 213 people about their experiences of junk food withdrawal.

The results showed that irritability, depressed mood and tiredness peaked two to three days after giving up junk food.

Most symptoms had reduced after around one week.

The study was published in the journal Appetite (Schulte et al., 2018).

The Diet Linked To Lower Depression Risk (S)

Diet could help explain why women are twice as likely to be diagnosed with depression.

Diet could help explain why women are twice as likely to be diagnosed with depression.

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The Food That Slows Down The Brain

The effects can be counteracted with the right nutrients.

The effects can be counteracted with the right nutrients.

A diet high in sugar slows down the brain, research finds.

Both memory and learning were weakened by a diet high in fructose (sugar).

However, omega-3 fatty acids can help fight the problem, the scientists also discovered.

Around 1g of DHA a day could be enough to help counteract the deleterious effects of sugar.

Professor Fernando Gomez-Pinilla, study co-author, said:

“Our findings illustrate that what you eat affects how you think.

Eating a high-fructose diet over the long term alters your brain’s ability to learn and remember information.

But adding omega-3 fatty acids to your meals can help minimize the damage.”

The study gave some rats a high fructose solution to drink for six weeks.

Another group were also fed omega-3 fatty acids.

Professor Gomez-Pinilla explained the results:

“The second group of rats navigated the maze much faster than the rats that did not receive omega-3 fatty acids.

The DHA-deprived animals were slower, and their brains showed a decline in synaptic activity.

Their brain cells had trouble signaling each other, disrupting the rats’ ability to think clearly and recall the route they’d learned six weeks earlier.”

Professor Gomez-Pinilla advises that we should keep sugary food intake to a minimum:

“We’re less concerned about naturally occurring fructose in fruits, which also contain important antioxidants.

We’re more concerned about the fructose in high-fructose corn syrup, which is added to manufactured food products as a sweetener and preservative.”

Omega-3, though, can help protect the brain, Professor Gomez-Pinilla said:

“Our findings suggest that consuming DHA regularly protects the brain against fructose’s harmful effects.

It’s like saving money in the bank.

You want to build a reserve for your brain to tap when it requires extra fuel to fight off future diseases.”

The study was published in the journal Physiology (Agrawal & Gomez-Pinilla, 2012).

Eating This Meat May Contribute To Manic Episodes (S)

Manic episodes can lead to dangerous risk-taking and delusional thinking — it frequently requires hospitalisation.

Manic episodes can lead to dangerous risk-taking and delusional thinking -- it frequently requires hospitalisation.

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The Best Type of Chocolate For Good Mood and Lower Stress (S)

The chocolate helped regulate neural signalling and improved the immune response.

The chocolate helped regulate neural signalling and improved the immune response.

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