Latest Senior Health News


Even Before COVID, Many More People Died Early in U.S. Versus Europe

Even Before COVID, Many More People Died Early in U.S. Versus EuropeTHURSDAY, April 15, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Americans were living shorter lives and dying at a significantly higher rate than the citizens of wealthy European countries even before the COVID-19 pandemic struck, a new study reports.The United States suffered more than 400,000 excess deaths in 2017 alone, pre-COVID, compared to the combined populations of France, Germany, Italy, Spain, England and Wales, said senior researcher Samuel Preston, a professor of sociology with the University of Pennsylvania Population Studies Center, in Philadelphia.By this measure, about one in seven U.S. deaths that occurred in 2017 was in excess of the European death rate, the researchers said. Lifestyle choices — from overeating to smoking and drug use — play a major role in the divide.There's been a...

Your Zip Code Could Help or Harm Your Brain

15 April 2021
Your Zip Code Could Help or Harm Your BrainTHURSDAY, April 15, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Where you live could affect your brain health as you age, a new study claims. Specifically, it found that middle-aged and older people in poorer neighborhoods showed more brain shrinkage and faster mental decline than those in affluent neighborhoods.""Worldwide, dementia is a major cause of illness and a devastating diagnosis," said study author Dr. Amy Kind, of the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health in Madison. "There are currently no treatments to cure the disease, so identifying possible modifiable risk factors is important. Compelling evidence exists that the social, economic, cultural and physical conditions in which humans live may affect health."Our findings suggest that increased vigilance by health care...

One Good Way to Help Beat COVID: Exercise

14 April 2021
One Good Way to Help Beat COVID: ExerciseWEDNESDAY, April 14, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Exercise guards against a host of chronic diseases that can plague people as they age, but can it also protect against severe cases of COVID-19?New research suggests that's so: Being physically active reduced COVID-19 patients' risk of hospitalization, intensive care unit (ICU) admission and death, and even being just somewhat active provided some protection."This is a wake-up call for the importance of healthy lifestyles and especially physical activity," said study author Dr. Robert Sallis. He's a family and sports medicine physician at the Kaiser Permanente Fontana Medical Center.The "study truly shows how important that is during this pandemic and beyond," Sallis said in a Kaiser Permanente news release. "People who regularly exercise...

4 in 10 Adults Over 50 Consult Online Reviews When...

14 April 2021
4 in 10 Adults Over 50 Consult Online Reviews When Picking a DoctorWEDNESDAY, April 14, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Finding a new doctor can be a daunting task. For help, many older adults turn to online reviews, a new study finds.In fact, many people rate online reviews as highly as they would a recommendation from friends and family when picking a doctor, the new research found."Doctors and policymakers should know that many older adults are viewing and valuing online ratings and reviews when choosing physicians," said researcher Dr. Jeffrey Kullgren. He's an associate professor of internal medicine at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.However, "the information on online physician rating sites often provides little insight into the context of health care encounters or the quality of care provided," Kullgren added. "This can make some patients...

Research Shows Links Between Gum Disease and Alzheimer's

14 April 2021
Research Shows Links Between Gum Disease and Alzheimer`sWEDNESDAY, April 14, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Don't forget to floss: New research adds to evidence linking gum disease with Alzheimer's disease.The mouth is home to both harmful bacteria that promote inflammation and healthy, protective bacteria, the study authors explained.In the new study, the researchers found that people who have more harmful than healthy gum bacteria were more likely to also have a protein marker for Alzheimer's disease, known as amyloid beta, in their cerebrospinal fluid (CSF). "To our knowledge, this is the first study showing an association between the imbalanced bacterial community found under the gumline and a CSF biomarker of Alzheimer's disease in cognitively normal older adults," said lead author Dr. Angela Kamer. She's associate professor of...

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