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If you want to slow down the aging process, it might not hurt to replace whole milk with skim, new research suggests.

The study of over 5,800 U.S. adults found that those who regularly indulged in higher-fat milk had shorter telomeres in their cells — a sign of accelerated “biological aging.”

The findings do not prove that milk fat, per se, hastens aging, stressed researcher Larry Tucker, a professor of exercise sciences at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah.

But the study does lend support to what U.S. dietary guidelines suggest for adults: If you’re going to drink cow’s milk, opt for low-fat or skim, Tucker said.

Full article at US News

THE EXTERNAL PHENOMENA of aging are known to all of us. We can expect graying hair, bone loss, fatigue or memory difficulties.

But what actually happens to our brain as we get older, and what goes wrong when aging develops into a neurological disease like Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s? This is a primary focus of neurological specialists around the world working to map the brain and unlock its many mysteries.

Previous animal studies have shown that molecular changes in the composition of lipids and proteins in brain cells affect brain function and may cause cognitive impairment. Magnetic resonance imaging, or MRI, scans allow us to look into the human brain in a non-invasive manner and learn about the changes that occur in it with age.

Read full article at US News

Senior housing occupancy increased 0.1 percent in the fourth quarter of 2019 to 88.0 percent, according to new data from the National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care (NIC). San Jose (95.7%) and New York (91.3%) experienced the highest occupancy rates of the 31 metropolitan markets that comprise NIC’s Primary Markets. Atlanta (82.7%) and Houston (82.5%) recorded the lowest. Las Vegas experienced the largest occupancy increase from a year ago, rising from 80.3 percent to 84.1 percent. Cincinnati saw the largest year-over-year decrease, falling from 89.7 percent to 86.4 percent.

In a breakout of senior housing types, assisted living occupancy increased to 85.7 percent in the fourth quarter, from a recent record low of 85.1 percent earlier in the year as demand outpaced new inventory growth. The occupancy rate for independent living decreased to 90.0 percent in the fourth quarter, below its recent peak of 90.4 percent in the first quarter of 2019 and down from 90.3 percent one year earlier.

“It appears that 2019 was an inflection year for assisted living with the occupancy rate at its highest level in two years after having reached its trough and new construction continuing to slow,” said Chuck Harry, head of research and analytics at NIC.

Full article at National Investment Center

Picture this – you suffer a car accident and your leg is broken. Within moments a small chip-like silicone device is placed on the broken leg – it reprograms the skin cells beneath and treats the injury – in a matter of seconds.

Sounds like the stuff of science fiction, right? Nope. This is real-life, folks!

A new non-invasive technology – Tissue Nanotransfection (TNT) – has been developed by researchers at Ohio State University to reprogram and grow skin cells directly on the body. The device delivers genes to skin cells by passing a strong electrical current through the chip and transforming the cells. 

In lab studies on mice, the tiny device has successfully reprogrammed and grown cells – healing injured parts of the body – from broken bones to brain damage. 

Full article at Nurse.org

For decades, scientists have known that Alzheimer’s disease is accompanied by the buildup of clumps of amyloid protein between brain cells. Could these plaques be causing the disease?

That’s been a prevailing theory driving Alzheimer’s research for years. But a new study suggests the strategy could be wrong.

Researchers reporting Dec. 30 in the journal Neurology have found that early declines in memory and thinking seen in Alzheimer’s patients tend to occur before amyloid plaques begin to appear in the brain, not after.

Full article at US News

A drug that provides the benefits obtained from medicinal cannabis without the “high” or other side effects may help to unlock a new treatment for Parkinson’s disease.

The drug — HU-308 — lessens devastating involuntary movements called dyskinesias, a side effect from years of treatment for Parkinson’s disease.

The research, published today in Neurobiology of Disease, has been conducted by the Centre for Neuroscience and Regenerative Medicine (CNRM) at the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) and the Applied Medical Research Institute of St Vincent’s Hospital Sydney.

The study shows that in mice HU-308 is as effective as amantadine, the only available treatment for dyskinesias. Furthermore, the combination of HU-308 with amantadine is more effective than either drug used alone.

Full story at Science Daily

Scientists recently discovered an unexpected role for a protein they associate with premature aging. They showed that it is a master regulator of cellular senescence and argue its loss leads to normal aging.

Aging is an inevitable part of our lives. But an increasingly aging population poses public health challenges.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the number of people in the United States aged 65 years and older will reach around 71 million in the next 10 years.

But what actually happens when we age? Scientists are working on a number of theories.

Full story at Medical News Today

A leukemia drug may have cleared another hurdle as a potential treatment for Parkinson’s disease.

But critics say it’s still not clear whether the drug, nilotinib (brand name Tasigna), is truly safe or effective for this use.

In a study of 75 people with Parkinson’s, nilotinib appeared to improve quality of life and boost the chemical dopamine, a team from Georgetown University Medical Center reported Monday in JAMA Neurology.

“We are seeing signals that this may be a potential treatment for our Parkinson’s disease patients,” says Dr. Fernando Pagan, director of the medical center’s movement disorders program.

Full story at NPR

Do you feel like you know why you’re here?

The answer to that question could determine how you feel day-to-day.

If you’ve found meaning in your life, you’re more likely to be both physically and mentally healthy, a new study reports.

On the other hand, people restlessly searching for meaning in their life are more likely to have worse mental well-being, with their struggle to find purpose negatively affecting their mood, social relationships, psychological health, and ability to think and reason.

“We found presence of meaning was associated with better physical functioning and better mental functioning,” said senior study author Dr. Dilip Jeste. He is senior associate dean for the Center for Healthy Aging at the University of California, San Diego, School of Medicine.

Full story at US News

Middle-aged men who maintain their muscle mass may lower their risk of heart disease as they get older, a new study suggests.

Beginning in the mid-30s, muscle begins to decline by about 3% each decade. Previous studies found that muscle mass is associated with heart attack/stroke risk, but those studies focused on people with heart disease.

In this new study, the researchers wanted to examine if muscle mass in middle age might be associated with long-term heart health in people without heart disease.

The study included more than 1,000 men and women, aged 45 and older, who were followed for 10 years. During that time, 272 participants developed heart disease, including stroke and minor stroke.

Full story at US News