Happiness can be as bad for heart as emotional distress

Being too happy can lead to broken heart syndrome, a condition in which sudden temporary weakening of the heart muscles occur. Previous studies have shown that the condition occurs mostly due to severe emotional distress and causes chest pains and breathlessness in the afflicted. It can lead to heart attacks and death. Researchers from the University Hospital Zurich in Switzerland went through data of some 1,750 patients and zeroed on 485 patients who had suffered from the condition. It was found that in 20 of them, broken heart syndrome was caused by happy events, such as a birthday party, wedding, a favourite team winning a match or a surprise farewell celebration. The study was published in the European Heart Journal. Read more here.

Smartphone addiction can lead to anxiety and depression

Young people who are addicted to smartphones are more likely to suffer from anxiety and depression compared to people who use it in moderation. A study by the University of Illinois interviewed 300 university students to find out if there was actually any link between phone addiction and mental health. People who were most addicted to Internet and cellphones reported the highest incidences of depression and anxiety. When the researchers allowed a control group to keep their cellphones but didn’t allow them to use them during a stressful situation, the incidence of anxiety and depression was low. The study was published in the journal Computers in Human Behavior. Read more here.

Nails and hair susceptible to chemical contamination

Chemical used as flame retardants in plastic goods and clothes of daily use accumulate in hair, fingernails and toenails a US study warns. Researchers from Indiana University collected hair, fingernails and toenail samples from 50 students and compared them with the blood samples of the same people. The findings suggest the concentration of chemical like polybrominated diphenyl ethers or PBDEs commonly used as flame retardant was higher in nails than in blood. It was found to be higher in women and researchers believe it can be due to the use of nail polishes. Exposure to these chemicals has been linked to obesity, learning disabilities, and reproductive toxicity. The study was published in the journal Environmental Science and Technology. Read more here.

Binge drinking can damage heart

Drinking more than six cocktails in one night can increase the risk of cardiovascular complications like heart attacks and strokes over the following week, a US study claims. Researchers from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health in Boston studied data on 29,457 people and found 17,966 cases of heart attack and 2,599 cases of ischemic strokes. The study found that when people had only two to four drinks in one night, the risk of heart attacks and haemorrhagic strokes in the next 24 hours was 19% lower, while for those who had six drinks, the risk was 30% higher. The study was published in the journal Circulation. Read more here.

Compiled by Abhijit Ahaskar