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Blueberries can  build healthy bones

Compounds in blueberries may have a powerful effect on the formation of strong and healthy bones, according to a new study.

Jin-Ran Chen’s studies with young, rapidly growing laboratory rats suggest that polyphenols, the compounds that give blueberries their blue, purple, and red coloration, might aid in building strong bones.

The work has paved the way for new research that might reveal whether blueberries could be used in the future in treatments to boost development of bone mass and to help prevent osteoporosis.

The investigation showed that animals fed rations that contained 10 per cent freeze-dried blueberry powder had significantly more bone mass than their counterparts whose rations were blueberry-free.

When the researchers exposed laboratory cultures of bone-forming cells (osteoblasts) to blood (serum) from the animals, the scientists found that serum from the blueberry-fed rats was associated with an increase in development of osteoblasts into mature, functional bone cells.

Eating junk food destroys brain cells that control weight

 A study has found that eating too much of fatty junk food destroys the brain cells that control weight, leading to a vicious circle of obesity. Researchers fed rats what they described as a ‘typical high-fat American diet’ and found they had doubled their calorie intake three days later.

It also showed they had an inflammation in the hypothalamus, the part of the brain containing neurons that control body weight. Lead researcher Joshua Thaler, said scientists also detected a healing response to brain injury called gliosis. “Gliosis is thought to be the brain equivalent of wound healing and is typically seen in conditions of neuronal injury, such as stroke and multiple sclerosis,” the Daily Mail quoted him as saying.

We speculate that the early gliosis that we saw may be a protective response that fails over time. We also detected damage to, and eventual loss of, critical weight-regulating neurons. “The possibility that brain injury may be a consequence of the over-consumption of a typical American diet offers a new explanation for why sustained weight loss is so difficult for most obese individuals to achieve,” he added.

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