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App helps measure booze content

Australian wine company is all set to unveil the world’s first reality app that lets drinkers calculate the number of standard drinks they’ve had just by pointing their smartphone at their wine glass. Jacob's Creek's Wine Line augmented reality app can calculate how many standard drinks are included in a serving, regardless of the size or shape of the glass.
The app then keeps track of how many drinks the person has consumed in each session, News.com.au reported. Users of the free iPhone Wine Line app can trace the outline of the wine in their glass and then select the type of wine they’re drinking.

Reduction in BMI cuts diabetes risk in obese teens

Researchers found that obese teenagers who reduced their body mass index (BMI) by 8 percent or more had improvements in insulin sensitivity, an important metabolic factor related to the later development of type 2 diabetes.

The teens followed a family-based, lifestyle-modification weight loss program that offers the potential to become a broader model.

BMI is a measure of body weight adjusted for height. “This threshold effect that occurs at 8 percent suggests that obese adolescents don’t need to lose enormous amounts of weight to achieve improvements,” said pediatric endocrinologist Lorraine Levitt Katz, M.D., of the Diabetes Center for Children at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.

“The improvements in insulin sensitivity occurred after four months of participating in a lifestyle-modification program,” Katz stated.

The study team analyzed results in 113 primarily urban adolescents, aged 13 to 17, of whom 81 percent were female, and 62 percent were African American. At the start of the study, their mean BMI was 37.1, placing them in the severely obese range. None had type 2 diabetes, but their obesity placed them at high risk to develop the disease in the future.

Alzheimer's drugs may reduce risk of heart attacks

Drugs commonly used to treat Alzheimer’s disease may have another benefit: preventing heart attacks and premature death, a new study has suggested. Professor Peter Nordstrom, of Umea University, Umea, Sweden, and colleagues reviewed records on 7,073 Alzheimer’s patients taking cholinesterase inhibitors (ChEIs), such as donepezil, rivastigmine and galantamine, which are used for treating mild to moderate Alzheimer's disease.

Side-effects of ChEIs include a beneficial effect on the vagus nerve, which controls the rate at which the heart beats, and some experimental studies have suggested that ChEIs could also have anti-inflammatory properties.

They found that those who were on ChEIs had a 36 percent reduced risk of death from any cause, a 38 percent reduced risk of a myocardial infarction (heart attack) and a 26 percent reduced risk of death from cardiovascular causes such as stroke compared to people not taking ChEIs.

These results included adjustments for various confounding factors such as age, sex, whether the diagnosis was for Alzheimer's dementia or Alzheimer's mixed dementia level of care, and medical history including medications for other conditions.

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