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Posts Tagged ‘Men’s Health’

What a terrific piece of news from the scientific community:

Ogling over women’s breasts is good for a man’s health and can add years to his life, medical experts have discovered. According to the New England Journal of Medicine, “Just 10 minutes of staring at the charms of a well-endowed female is roughly equivalent to a 30-minute aerobics work-out” declared gerontologist Dr. Karen Weatherby.

Dr. Weatherby and fellow researchers at three hospitals in Frankfurt, Germany, reached the startling conclusion after comparing the health of 200 male outpatients – half of whom were instructed to look at busty females daily, the other half told to refrain from doing so. The study revealed that after five years, the chest-watchers had lower blood pressure, slower resting pulse rates and fewer instances of coronary artery disease.

“Sexual excitement gets the heart pumping and improves blood circulation,” explains Dr. Weatherby. “There’s no question: Gazing at breasts makes men healthier.” “Our study indicates that engaging in this activity a few minutes daily cuts the risk of stroke and heart attack in half. We believe that by doing so consistently, the average man can extend his life four to five years.”

File this one in the “too good to be true department”.

If the story smacks of tabloid journalism, it’s because that’s precisely what it is. The text began circulating in March or April 2000, mere weeks after a very similar article appeared in the consistently misinformative Weekly World News — nor is this the first time we’ve run into baseless Internet rumors traceable to precisely that source.

It goes without saying (I hope) that it’s unwise to take medical advice from supermarket tabloids, still less from forwarded emails. Males who wish to increase their lifespans ought to consider practicing common sense as an alternative — it’s more likely to achieve the desired result than any amount of public breast ogling.

Sorry fellas, but you will not be able to justify staring based on “some scientific research you read somewhere”. Instead, take the high road and blame Leslie Bennetts style nagging for your wandering eyes – but don’t forget to look your best otherwise you won’t be able to turn her off. If you are concerned about your health don’t forget that video games are good for the heart and for the mind.

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This is still early stage news, so don’t get too excited. For example, the study itself had some slight flaws.

“Unfortunately, this trial was not a randomized trial, which would have been needed to be more sure that the observed changes were truly attributable to the green tea components and not to some other lifestyle change (better diet, taking vitamins, etc.) men undertook in preparation for surgery,” added Nelson, who is also a senior editor for Cancer Prevention Research. However, “this trial is provocative enough to consider a more substantial randomized trial.”

The men chosen for the study did not sit around drinking tea all day. They received measured doses of one particular compound found in green tea.

The study included 26 men, aged 41 to 72 years, diagnosed with prostate cancer and scheduled for radical prostatectomy. Patients consumed four capsules containing Polyphenon E until the day before surgery — four capsules are equivalent to about 12 cups of normally brewed concentrated green tea, according to Cardelli.

The exciting part is the actual results which were obtained.

Findings showed a significant reduction in serum levels of HGF, VEGF and PSA after treatment, with some patients demonstrating reductions in levels of greater than 30 percent, according to the researchers.

There is still much work to be done, and this seems like a good step in the right direction.

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Dr. Gary D. Kao, at a V.A. hospital in Philadelphia, was supposed to implant radioactive seeds into a patient’s prostate, to eliminate a tumor. However, most ended up in the patient’s bladder instead. With the blessings of his higher ups, he rewrote the surgical plan to cover up the mistake.

Unfortunately for many other patients, 92 out of 116 cancer treatments over the course of 6 years were botched at this V.A. hospital. Many people knew, and had no problem keeping it quiet.

Not because hospitals are above covering up malpractice, or because doctors don’t protect other doctors, but because any private hospital would have been terrified of getting sued.  The VA is very hard to sue because of sovereign immunity.

Something to keep in mind, as certain groups are aggressively pushing for government to take over healthcare in the United States.

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Can someone’s personality have an effect on their overall health and longevity? It seems that the answer is “yes”, since a connection between being an extrovert and having low levels of interleukin 6, an inflammatory chemical, has been discovered.

…extraversion is a personality trait with three parts: a tendency toward happy thoughts, a desire to be around others and “dispositional energy,” a sense of innate vigor or active engagement with life (“I’m bursting with energy; my life is fast-paced”).

While the first two extrovert qualities were not found to track with inflammation, the current study found increases in “dispositional activity” came with statistically significant decreases in IL-6 (p = .001). P values measure the weight that should be attributed to a finding, with values less than .05 usually deemed significant.

On average, women and minorities have higher levels than white males. Chemicals such as interleukin 6 increase in concentration as result of stress. Long term exposure to various sources of stress takes a toll on an individual’s organs and can result in poor health and early death.

“If this aspect of personality drives inflammation, dispositional energy and engagement with life may confer a survival advantage,” Chapman said. “But we don’t know if low dispositional activity is causing inflammation, or inflammation is taking its toll on people by reducing these personality tendencies, so we must be cautious in our interpretation of this association.”

A cynic may look at all the data and simply conclude that an extroverted personality is one which participates in the world, meaning, someone who likely getting plenty of exercise and doing physical activity. There is a strong connection between proper exercise and longer, healthier life, so everyone could gain these benefits by getting fit.

“Beyond physical activity, some people seem to have this innate energy separate from exercise that makes them intrinsically involved in life,” Chapman said. “It will be fascinating to investigate how we can increase this disposition toward engagement.

Of course, there’s probably more to it.

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There are two general types of prostate cancer, and one of them is very aggressive. Unfortunately for some men, that means surgery is no longer an option by the time it gets noticed. Fortunately, some great forward strides have been made on this front at the Mayo Clinic to give these men a fighting chance.

Dr. Kwon called Dr. Allison and designed the trial together. The idea: use androgen ablation or hormone therapy to ignite an immune approach — a pilot light — and then, after a short interval of hormone therapy, introduce an anti-CTLA-4 antibody that acts like gasoline to this pilot light and overwhelms the cancer cells. MDX-010 (now called Ipilimumab) is the clinical antibody being tested in the Mayo trial.

This has been tested on two patients so far, with very good results, but some caution is in order.

Both investigators are quick to point out that the outcomes in these two patients need to be validated in further studies. Plans are already underway for extended trials at Mayo Clinic to determine the dosage to optimize this therapy and explain how this combined treatment actually works.

“It’s important for us to understand the mechanism of favorable response in these patients,” says Dr. Blute. “This could have significant implications for other forms of cancer, including hormone-sensitive forms, such as breast and ovarian cancer.

Go read the source material for a detailed account of the patients experiences, and to learn a little more about the treatment.

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