by Sally Rummel for TC Times:
If you’re making lists to help you remember all that you have to do in a day, the most important list by far is your grocery list.
That’s because the food you buy at the grocery store will actually help you “supercharge” your brain, if you make the right choices. Even as people age chronologically, we can maintain a healthy brain into “old age” by adding these smart foods to our daily diets.
Not surprisingly, women and men require different foods, because there are clear differences between male and female brains.
Posted by WBHI on May 10, 2013 in Better Thinking, Think Twice
by Kim Zarzour for York Region:
The human brain is intricate, complex and beautiful. So, too, is a new jewelry design by Richmond Hill jeweler, Mark Lash.
There’s a reason for the similarity.
Mr. Lash, who has created designs for celebrities from Celine Dion and Joan Rivers to Martin Sheen, has taken a very personal interest in his latest design. He wants to use his talents to help save our brains — in particular, the female brain.
That’s because 70 per cent of new Alzheimer’s sufferers are women, and women suffer from stroke, depression and dementia twice as much as men — and yet, most research still focuses on the male brain.
Watching his beloved grandmother succumb to the disease convinced Mr. Lash that this was wrong.
Posted by WBHI on May 2, 2013 in Think Twice
by Jayne MacAuley for Zoomers:
A gender gap means a research gap for women’s aging brains.
When Lynn Posluns learned that even now, basic-level scientific studies prefer to use male rats for Alzheimer’s disease studies, she wondered why. It turns out hormones in the brains of female rats complicate the studies. (For example, lady rats have to be monitored so scientists know where they are in their menstrual cycle.)
But what good was using only male rats, when 70 per cent of newly diagnosed people with Alzheimer’s disease will be female, Posluns thought. The former director of the Baycrest Foundation decided to found the Women’s Brain Health Initiative to raise money that will fund innovative research into women’s brain aging disorders by foremost institutions throughout the world.
And what better way to showcase the consequences of a woman’s failing brain health than to hold a preview of a captivating Canadian film that shows exactly that. Still Mine, a film co-written and directed by Michael McGowan, premiers in theatres on May 3, 2013.
Posted by WBHI on Apr 22, 2013 in Think Twice
by David Hurst for The Daily Mail:
The brain is one of the last frontiers of medicine — we still don’t really know how all those blood vessels, brain cells and nerves work together to shape our lives and our health.
The average brain weighs 3lb (1.36kg) — or around 2 per cent of the total body weight. But it consumes up to 20 per cent of the body’s energy, more than any other organ, as well as 20 per cent of its oxygen. One of the greatest enigmas of the brain is the role of gender. For instance, women seem to be more prone to dementia and depression, yet neurological conditions such as Parkinson’s disease strike more men.
Why is this so? More controversial is the suggestion that gender doesn’t just affect the health of your brain, but the way it works — and how effective it is at different tasks.
Posted by WBHI on Apr 4, 2013 in Think Twice
by Lisa Collier Cool for Yahoo Health:
It’s not as simple as Mars vs. Venus, but scientists have identified intriguing differences in how men and women think that influence emotions, memory, business success, and even longevity.
In the largest brain imaging study ever conducted to compare male and female brains, Daniel Amen, MD, and other researchers analyzed imaging scans of 26,000 people. They discovered that women showed increased blood flow in 112 of the 128 brain regions they studied, indicating that on average, women’s brains are much more active than men’s.
The most striking difference between the sexes was that women have a much higher level of activity in the prefrontal cortex, an area that’s sometimes called “the brain’s CEO” because it governs planning, organization, impulse control, and learning from mistakes.
Posted by WBHI on Mar 22, 2013 in Think About It
People who physically act out their dreams while sleeping have a significantly increased risk of developing a specific kind of dementia, a new study contends.
“Dementia with Lewy bodies” is the second most common form of dementia in the elderly. A Lewy body is an accumulation of a type of protein in the brain. Lewy bodies are often seen in people with Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease, according to the U.S. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke.
For the new study, Mayo Clinic researchers examined the medical records of 75 patients diagnosed with probable dementia with Lewy bodies. They concluded that people are five times more likely to develop this type of dementia if they have a condition called “rapid eye movement (REM) sleep behavior disorder” than if they have one of the risk factors currently used to make a diagnosis, such as hallucinations or significant fluctuations in attention or alertness.
Posted by WBHI on Mar 9, 2013 in Think Twice
by Nancy Walsh for MedPage Today:
At a recent meeting of the Institute of Medicine in Washington on sports-related concussions in youth, several speakers pointed out that almost no public attention has been paid to head injuries in women and girls. But in fact, females are more susceptible to these injuries for reasons such as differences in head and neck structure, and cerebral blood flow.
One of the speakers, Katherine Price Snedaker, has established a Web site, pinkconcussions.com, to gather and disseminate information about the topic and to encourage further research. She noted that the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine has issued a position statement in which findings about women’s concussion are buried in the report, but included these findings:
Posted by WBHI on Mar 4, 2013 in Think Twice
Scientists have been long puzzled over why women can show just as much intelligence as men, although their brains are 8pc smaller.
Now a study by universities in Los Angeles and Madrid has shown that for women, brain size does not matter because they are more efficient.
The research has implications for assumptions made about a person’s intelligence. The study, published in the journal Intelligence, carried out a series of intelligence tests on men and women.
Despite the fact the women had smaller brains, they performed better in inductive reasoning, some numerical skills and were better at keeping track of a changing situation – although men did better on spatial intelligence.
Posted by WBHI on Jan 29, 2013 in Think Twice
by Roni Caryn Rabin for The New York Times:
Most sleeping pills are designed to knock you out for eight hours. When the Food and Drug Administration was evaluating a new short-acting pill for people to take when they wake up in the middle of the night, agency scientists wanted to know how much of the drug would still be in users’ systems come morning.
Blood tests uncovered a gender gap: Men metabolized the drug, Intermezzo, faster than women. Ultimately the F.D.A. approved a 3.5 milligram pill for men, and a 1.75 milligram pill for women. The active ingredient in Intermezzo, zolpidem, is used in many other sleeping aids, including Ambien. But it wasn’t until earlier this month that the F.D.A reduced doses of Ambien for women by half.
Sleeping pills are hardly the only medications that may have unexpected, even dangerous, effects in women. Studies have shown that women respond differently than men to many drugs, from aspirin to anesthesia. Researchers are only beginning to understand the scope of the issue, but many believe that as a result, women experience a disproportionate share of adverse, often more severe, side effects.
Posted by WBHI on Jan 29, 2013 in Think Twice
by Charles Bankhead for MedPage Today:
Heart disease in older women tripled their likelihood of mild cognitive impairment, data from a large cohort study showed.
The association between heart disease and cognitive function was limited to the non-amnestic subtype of impairment, which involves cognitive domains other than memory. Among women with cardiac disease, the hazard ratio for non-amnestic mild cognitive impairment was 3.07 versus women without cardiac disease (95% CI, 1.58 to 5.99), according to Rosebud Roberts, MB, ChB, of the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., and co-authors.
In contrast, men with cardiac disease had a nonsignificant 1.16 hazard ratio compared with men who did not have cardiac disease (95% CI 0.68 to 1.99), they reported online inJAMA Neurology.