Cycling and walking to work can cut obesity risk

People who walk, cycle or use public transport to commute to office are more likely to have lower body mass index (BMI) and body fat percentage compared to people who commute mostly by car, a British study suggests. Researchers at London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine examined health records of 150,000 men and women in the age group of 40 to 69. They found that 64% of men and 61% of women travelled by car, while 4% of men and 2% of women cycled or walked to their office. Men who cycled to work were 5kg lighter than men who drove, whereas women who cycled to work weighed 4.4kg less than women who drove. The study was published in The Lancet Diabetes and Endocrinology. Read more here.

Common painkillers can be dangerous for heart

Common painkillers such as NSAID (Non-steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs) used for inflammation, joint pain and fever can lead to heart diseases, a Danish study claims. Though a number of newer versions of NSAIDs were banned in several countries, researchers at Aarhus University have found that some of the older variants of NSAID such as Diclofenac, which are still in use, can be as harmful as variants that were banned. One of the drugs banned by Indian Health Ministry this week includes an NSAID known as Nimesulide. The study was published in the European Heart Journal. Read more here.

People with autism are more likely to die early

Autistic people are more likely to die 10 years earlier than a healthy person, a Swedish study has found. Researchers from Karolinska Institute examined data on 27,000 people with autism and compared them with nearly three million non-autistic people. They found that autistic adults died 16 years earlier than non-autistic. Autistics who also suffered from a learning disability died 30 years younger, at an average age of 39. Researchers feel bullying, social issues, epilepsy and side effects from medication are some of the leading factors for early death in them. The study was published in Autistica Report. Read more here.

Children who skip breakfast face higher risk of obesity

Children who skip breakfast are more likely to grow obese compared to children who eat too much at breakfast, a US study suggests. Researchers at Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity tracked 600 middle-school students from fifth to seventh grade. They kept track of the number of breakfasts students had and how it affected obesity rates. It was found that children who ate double-breakfast did not experience any out of the ordinary weight gain. But the risk of obesity doubled among students who skipped breakfast. Children who skip breakfast are more likely to overeat later in the day. The study was published in the journal Pediatric Obesity. Read more here.

Smell of alcohol can weaken power of inhibition

The smell of alcohol can make it difficult for people who want to stop after a few drinks and lead them to drink more, a British study suggests. Researchers at Edge Hill University carried out a computer-based study where participants were randomly assigned to wear a face mask that was either dabbed with alcohol or mask with non-alcoholic citrus solution. They were asked to press a button when either the letter K or a picture of a beer bottle appeared on their screen. The number of times the participants pressed the button wrong was counted as an indicator of reduced powers of inhibition. It was found that the participants who were wearing masks dabbed with alcohol made more mistakes. The study was published in the Psychopharmacology journal. Read more here.

Compiled by Abhijit Ahaskar