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Eating sweets activates neurons in the dorsal hippocampus, the part of the brain that is critical for episodic memory.
Eating sweets activates neurons in the dorsal hippocampus, the part of the brain that is critical for episodic memory.

Don’t skip dessert. It can help you eat heathier

Feeding birds at parks can spread disease among both birds and humans and older adults are more depressed than young studies and research tips for a healthier you

Sweets can help in healthy eating

A new study claims memories of a meal stays longer if it involves a sweet food item. The research shows that eating sweets activates neurons in the dorsal hippocampus, the part of the brain that is critical for episodic memory. Episodic memory is the memory of autobiographical events experienced at a particular time and place. Researchers pointed out that people with amnesia are more likely to eat again if they are presented with food again because they have no memory of the meal. Forming memories of a meal is important for a healthy diet. “To understand energy regulation and the causes of obesity, scientists must consider how the brain controls meal onset and frequency," said Marise Parent from Georgia State University in US. The study was published in the journal Hippocampus. Read more here.

Crunchy toast and crispy potato increases cancer risk

A study claims crunchy roast potatoes, crispy toast and chips can cause cancer. Researchers from UK’s Food Standards Agency (FSA) have found that crunchy potato and crispy bread contains a cancer-causing toxin called acrylamide. This chemical is formed due to reaction between amino acids and the sugars and water found in foods with high starch content such as potato and bread when they are exposed to high temperature. During the study, the FSA found 490 micrograms of acrylamide per kg. The batch of roast potatoes that were cooked most, the chemical was 80 times higher in comparison to less crispy potatoes. In case of toast, crispiest toast contained 167micrograms of acrylamide per kg while the least cooked toast had only nine microgrames per kg. Read more here.

Feeding birds at park can spread disease

Feeding birds in parks is bad for them and can also help spread diseases in humans, claims a new study. Researchers from University of Georgia found bird feeding is changing the health, ecology and behaviour of white ibises in south Florida. The birds usually feed on fish, snails and crayfish, but they are becoming accustomed to items such as bread, fast food and popcorn fed by people at parks. They found that the strain of salmonella bacteria that infected white ibises was the same that was making people sick. The presence of a large number of birds close to the urban centre allows pathogens transmitted through faeces, like salmonella, to grow and affect both birds and humans gradually. Read more here.

Depression grows worse after 65

Older adults above the age of 65 feel more depressed than young, shows an Australian study. The researchers used data from a longitudinal study of 15 years involving 2,000 adults in Adelaide. This is the first study which shows that depression occurs early in older adults refuting earlier theories which suggest depression occurs only after 85 years. The researchers found that men showed a faster rate in increase of symptoms than women and it increased as they aged. Half of the participants suffered from arthritis and both men and women with chronic arthritis reported more symptoms of depression compared to those without it. The study was published in journal Psychology and Aging. Read more here.

Compiled by Abhijit Ahaskar

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