Topic 2

  1. Chest compressions save lives

    One of the easiest ways to save a life

    I believe absolutely everyone should learn CPR and chest compressions. It could literally be the difference between life and death for a friend, loved one, or a complete stranger.

    But it's that last part that puts many people off -- the stranger.

    It's not that people don't want to help a stranger. It's the idea of performing rescue breathing -- aka "mouth-to-mouth" -- on someone who is not only a stranger, but who also is ill.

    If that's what's keeping you from learning CPR or putting those skills to use when they're needed, I have some good news for you: You don't need to perform mouth-to-mouth to save a life.

    A growing number of studies show that chest compressions alone are often enough to help. And now, the latest research finds that people revived after cardiac arrest actually have a better long-term outlook when they get chest compressions without mouth-to-mouth.

    This study looked at data from two trials covering more than 3,200 adult victims of cardiac arrest, most of whom suffered heart problems rather than injury or accident.

    The patients given only chest compressions were 9 percent more likely to survive for at least a year when compared to those given chest compressions with rescue breathing.

    Like I said earlier, there's a growing body of evidence to support this approach. Even the American Heart Association now recommends that bystanders who are called on to perform CPR skip the mouth-to-mouth.

    And that means learning CPR -- and putting it into practice if needed -- is now easier than ever.

    You can read plenty about it online and there are even apps that can walk you through the technique, but nothing beats actual practice. Contact either the Red Cross or your local fire department to see where classes may be offered in your area.

    They're inexpensive (or even free) and won't take up too much of your time -- and what you learn could save a life.

  2. Soda drinks in new depression link

    Soft drinks cause depression

    It's funny how soda commercials always show happy, active, and thin people drinking can after can after can of cola.

    You'd almost be tempted to think soda drinkers are healthy.

    But they're not -- the more you drink, the less healthy you are, and that's as true for diet soft drinks as it is for the stuff made with sugar and high-fructose corn syrup.

    One new study even finds that drinkers of all sweetened drinks -- whether it's sugar or the "diet" stuff -- are nearly a third more likely to suffer depression than people who avoid all sodas and soft drinks.

    And the risk is actually higher for people who drink diet.

    Regular soda consumption causes the risk of depression to rise by 22 percent. But for people who drink diet soft drinks, it shoots up by 31 percent, according to the study.

    Some people are confused by this, wondering if it means that regular soda is actually better for you than diet. But that's missing the point -- because it's a classic case of "one's worse than the other."

    On their own soft drinks sweetened with sugar or high-fructose corn syrup are terrible choices. They can cause weight gain, diabetes, heart disease, and more -- including the depression mentioned in the new study.

    And if there's anything worse for you than those sugars, it's the supposedly healthier alternatives found in diet drinks -- chemical-based no-calorie sweeteners such as aspartame.

    Studies have shown that people who make the switch to diet drinks don't get healthier. They don't lose weight, and in some cases may even gain it. And in some studies, diet soda drinkers were even shown to have a higher risk of diabetes.

    Don't choose between bad and worse. Skip all soft drinks -- regular and diet -- and switch to healthier options instead, including filtered water and tea.

  3. Kids with low vitamin D have higher autism rates

    Children with low levels of sun exposure and low levels of vitamin D have a higher risk of autism, according to new research.
  4. Flu remedies that really work

    Chicken soup is a time-tested cure for flu -- and new research shows how it can actually help fight the infection that causes the disease.
  5. Vaccinations for children

    During the 2009 mumps outbreak, children who were vaccinated were actually more likely to get sick than those who were not.
  6. Saturated fats kill sperm

    Saturated fats -- the unhealthiest of the fats found in meat and junk food -- can cause sperm counts to plunge by 41 percent.
  7. Sleep meds and the placebo effect

    Sleep drugs can help put you to sleep -- but new research says it's not the drug doing most of the work. It's the placebo effect.
  8. Vitamin D slashes risk of respiratory infection

    The sunshine vitamin can help prevent respiratory infections, and reduce the need for meds when it does strike.
  9. Low energy levels linked to low D

    Low levels of vitamin D can lead to low levels of energy -- especially in people already suffering from sleep disorders.
  10. Smoking can cause sudden cardiac death

    Women who smoke face up to triple the risk of sudden cardiac death of nonsmokers.
  11. Genetically modified salmon comes closer to your table

    In a sneaky last-minute move, the feds cleared the way for the approval of a bioengineered fish despite huge potential risks.
  12. Mercury in vaccines making a comeback

    Docs are pushing to allow a mercury-based compound in vaccines years after asking for a ban on that same toxic ingredient.
  13. Vitamin D slashes risk of respiratory infections

    The sunshine vitamin can help prevent respiratory infections, and reduce the need for meds when it does strike.
  14. Anti-anxiety drugs linked to pneumonia

    Commonly used meds, including widely used sleep and anxiety drugs, can increase the risk of pneumonia and death by pneumonia.
  15. Sofas found contaminated with toxic chemicals

    Toxic chemicals -- including chemicals being banned or phased out -- have been found in up to 85 percent of all sofas.
  16. Organophosphate poisoning could cause memory loss

    A class of chemicals commonly used in pesticides and jet fuel could be causing memory problems, including memory loss and slow reactions times.
  17. Fish oil can boost your working memory

    The omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil can give your brain a boost, improving overall cognitive health as well as memory.
  18. Low B12 can speed up cognitive decline

    B vitamins are known to power the brain and boost cognition – and new research shows that high levels of B12 can prevent cognitive decline.
  19. Stop taking antibiotics for UTI

    Men given longer antibiotic treatments have a higher risk of recurrence - making natural prevention more important than ever.
  20. Half of all doctors have fatigue symptoms

    Doctors are more worn out than ever -- and that means they could be more prone to making a medical mistake. Find out how to avoid it here.

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