How diet and lifestyle choices impact athletic performance and risk of infection

Professional athletes like football (Soccer) players are exposed to large amounts of physiological and psychological stress, which can increase infection susceptibility and threaten availability for training and competition. A new journal article investigates what effect diet and lifestyle choices have on those at increased risk.

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Oxford named the UK’s fittest city

New research into fitness levels across the country has revealed Oxford to be the UK’s fittest city.

The survey of 2000 adults found that residents in Oxford do more exercise than those who live in any other city, with 74 per cent claiming to workout at least once a week.

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Illness makes you unhappy, but unhappiness doesn’t make you ill

It had been thought that being unhappy was bad for health – particularly for the heart.

But the decade-long analysis, published in the UK medical journal the Lancet,  said previous studies had just confused cause and effect.

A series of previous studies had shown that how happy people are, strongly predicts how long they are going to live.

Ideas included detrimental changes in stress hormones or the immune system resulting in a higher risk of death.

But the research team in the UK and Australia said those studies failed to deal with reverse causality – namely, that people who are ill are not very happy.

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Staying active helps ward off Alzheimer’s

A wide-ranging study published in the Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society found that simply walking every day is likely to stave off memory loss and other mental decline linked to ageing.

Scientists concluded that older adults who take more steps – either by walking or jogging – performed better on memory tasks than those who were couch potatoes.

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Mediterranean diet ‘may slow the ageing process by five years’

Following a Mediterranean-style diet slows the rate at which the brain shrinks by five years, according to a report by researchers at Columbia University, published in the journal Neurology.

The study indicates that a diet consisting of fruit and vegetables, fish and olive oil but little red meat or dairy products may be associated with losing fewer brain cells due to ageing.

The findings add weight to the theory that a healthy diet can stave off the onset of Alzheimer’s disease by stopping the brain from growing older.

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Exercise in early teens can prevent help diabetes in adulthood

Carrying out exercise during the early teenage years could reduce a child’s risk of developing diabetes later in life, according to a study led by the University of Exeter.

The research, published in the journal Diabetologia, found that physical activity provides the greatest benefits to adolescent insulin resistance, a condition which leads to high blood sugar and is a precursor to type 2 diabetes.

But researchers also found that while exercise made a difference at age 13, it made no impact on insulin resistance by the age of 16.

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Resistance training can help sufferers of fatty liver disease

overweight man on bike
Resistance training can be an effective alternative to cardio.

Resistance training in the gym leads to a fall in liver fat levels according to a new study held at the University of Haifa .

“For patients suffering from physical limitations or low motivation that prevents them performing aerobic exercises, resistance training can be an effective alternative,” comments Dr. Shira Zelber-Sagi from the School of Public Health, who undertook the study.

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Doctors call on politicians to protect child health

Children playingChildren’s doctors are calling on the next government to put child health high on the political agenda as members of the public show overwhelming support for a series of policies which would improve children’s health.

A recent poll conducted on behalf of Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH) found that two thirds of Britons support banning advertising of food high in fat, sugar and salt on TV before 9pm, with 90% backing cooking and nutrition lessons in schools.

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