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Parenthood linked to lower BP

Parenthood can be stressful, but it has health benefits too, says a new study.
The study by Brigham Young University researchers showed that parenthood is linked to lower blood pressure, particularly so among women.

Parenthood is obviously not the only route to low blood pressure — daily exercise and a low-sodium diet also do the trick.

However, the noteworthy aspect of the latest study is the idea that social factors may also protect physical health.

“While caring for children may include daily hassles, deriving a sense of meaning and purpose from life’s stress has been shown to be associated with better health outcomes,” said Julianne Holt-Lunstad, a BYU psychologist who studies relationships and health.

The study involved 198 adults who wore portable blood pressure monitors, mostly concealed by their clothes, for 24 hours.

The monitors took measurements at random intervals throughout the day — even while participants slept.

This method provides a better sense of a person’s true day-to-day blood pressure. Readings taken in a lab can be inflated by people who get the jitters in clinical settings.

Obstructive sleep apnea can make diabetes worse

A new study conducted by researchers at the University of Chicago has shown that obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) adversely affects glucose control in patients with
Type 2 diabetes.

Lead author, Renee S Aronsohn, University of Chicago, said the study “demonstrates for the first time that there is a clear, graded, inverse relationship between OSA severity and glucose control in patients with Type 2 diabetes”. The study also confirmed other reports that undiagnosed OSA is very common among patients with Type 2 diabetes, indicating that it is largely unrecognised additional medical risk factor in these patients.
“Our findings support the hypothesis that reducing the severity of OSA may improve glycemic control. Thus effective treatment of OSA may represent a novel and non-pharmacologic intervention in the management of Type 2 diabetes,” said Dr Aronsohn.

Breastfeeding protects kids born to HIV-infected moms

A new study has revealed that stopping breastfeeding early might increase mortality risk in children born to HIV-infected mothers.
The research team from Zambia assumed that by four months of age, children would have passed the critical developmental point when breastfeeding is essential to their survival.

However, the findings showed that stopping breastfeeding at four months, compared to usual breastfeeding as the child reaches six months to 24 months or older, did not decrease mortality or play a significant role in protecting the child from HIV transmission.
The study results were consistent with those for mothers not infected with HIV.
Longer breastfeeding is necessary to protect children against potentially fatal infectious diseases, especially those prevalent in low-resource settings.

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