Internet addiction may weaken your immune system

Spending too much time online may increase your risk of catching a cold or the flu as excessive Internet use can damage the immune function, a new study has claimed. Scientists from Swansea and Milan Universities found that people who have greater levels of Internet addiction problems catch more colds and flu bugs than those who are less addicted to the Internet. The study evaluated 500 people aged 18 to 101 years old. It found that those who reported problems with over-using the internet also reported having more cold and flu symptoms than those people who did not report excessive use of the Internet. Around 40% of the sample reported mild or worse levels of Internet addiction – a figure which did not differ between males and females. PTI

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Why your boss wants to track your heart rate at work

The future of the high-performance workplace is taking shape behind closed doors and kept quiet by non-disclosure agreements. Across the UK, hedge funds, banks, call centers and consultancies are installing tracking systems to link biosensing wearable devices with analytics tools once the preserve of elite sports. The new tools help link human behaviour and physiological data to business performance. It’s a departure from typical wearable technology strategies, which tend to focus on operational efficiency or safety. “A lot of smart managers think their algos have gone as far as they can go. The next step is human optimization," says the Bloomberg report. Read more here.

Work, pedal, and be healthy

UI study finds that portable pedalling devices increase activity of sedentary workers. A new study from the University of Iowa finds that inspiring office employees to be active at work could be as easy as pedalling a bike—and they don’t have to leave their desks. By providing workers with a portable pedalling device under their desks, Lucas Carr, assistant professor of health and human physiology and member of the Obesity Research and Education Initiative at the UI, discovered that people who were once sitting all day were now moving at work without getting up. Read more here

Shun those trans fats

A large new review of existing research suggests that for healthy people, a reasonable amount of saturated fat in the diet poses no health risk. Trans fats, on the other hand, were associated with an increased risk of death from any cause, death from cardiovascular disease and a diagnosis of coronary heart disease. Dietary guidelines recommend that saturated fats, found in animal products like butter, egg yolks and salmon, make up no more than 10 percent of daily calories. Trans unsaturated fats, known as trans fats, like the hydrogenated oils that keep processed foods and margarine shelf-stable, are primarily industrially produced and should provide no more than one percent of daily calories. Read more at Reuters

Compiled by Pooja Chaturvedi