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Black raspberry candies can help fight cancer

Researchers have developed novel black raspberry-based functional foods that can withstand the rigors of a large-scale cancer prevention trial.

Black raspberries- not to be confused with the more recognizable red variety - have piqued the interest of cancer scientists in the last decade due to research showing they have distinct antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that appear to inhibit tumor growth.

But the berries are only grown in a few places around the US, and like many of their berry cousins, must be refrigerated and eaten within a few days of picking.

“We set out to create a product that had the same level of quality and stability you would find in a pharmaceutical medicine, but that was 100 percent fruit, simple to take and retained high levels of chemopreventive bioactives,” said Yael Vodovotz, PhD, a food scientist with The Ohio State University Department of Food Science and Technology, said.

The result was two different formulations - gummy candies and a concentrated fruit juice (nectar) – each roughly equal to a cup of fresh berries. Both formulations were created by freeze drying the berries, which helped preserve the essential nutrients, and then grinding the whole berry – fiber, seeds and fuzz – into a fine powder.

The black raspberry formulations are currently being used in a clinical study of men with prostate cancer undergoing surgery.

The researchers hope to see if the black raspberry preparations, coupled with different types of diets, can improve post-surgery outcomes versus a control group of men with diet interventions only.

Electric shocks can help you get rid of math-phobia

Low-dose electric currents are reportedly found to help improve learning in people, an Oxford University researcher has revealed.

Senior research fellow Roi Cohen Kadosh has been working on a research with children and adults, who are given steady stream of low-current electricity delivered to their brains.

According to Cnet, the procedure, dubbed 'Transcranical electrical stimulation (tES),' is one of the most recent brain stimulation techniques to manipulate the brain and help in improving learning.

Unlike earlier electroshock treatment programs, which tended to placate people with mental disturbances, the goal of this work is to help people with learning disorders overcome their difficulties, and to help others learn better generally.

Cohen Kadosh found that when he attached an anode to the area of the brain known as the left posterior parietal cortex and a cathode to the right side of the same region and applied the mild current, learning skills improved, while reversing the electrical conductors, the treatment didn't work.

The report said that under the study, people wear a tight-fitting cap through which current supplied by a 9-volt battery is passed and the current could be directed to specific parts of the brain that feels akin to having a baby tug on the hair gently.

Loneliness ups older adult’s chances of premature death

A new study has revealed that feeling extreme loneliness can increase an older person’s chances of premature death by 14 percent.

The study by John Cacioppo, professor of psychology at the University of Chicago, and his colleagues shows that the impact of loneliness on premature death is nearly as strong as the impact of disadvantaged socioeconomic status, which they found increases the chances by 19 percent.

A 2010 meta-analysis showed that loneliness has twice the impact on early death as does obesity, he said. The researchers looked at dramatic differences in the rate of decline in physical and mental health as people age.

The consequences to health are dramatic, as feeling isolated from others can disrupt sleep, elevate blood pressure, increase morning rises in the stress hormone cortisol, alter gene expression in immune cells, and increase depression and lower overall subjective well-being.

Cacioppo, one of the nation's leading experts on loneliness, said older people can avoid the consequences of loneliness by staying in touch with former co-workers, taking part in family traditions, and sharing good times with family and friends – all of which gives older adults a chance to connect others about whom they care and who care about them.

Narendra Modi or Rahul Gandhi? Who will win the battle royale of the Lok Sabha Elections 2019


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