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Can Cabbage Beat Chemo for Cervical Cancer?
South Dakota State University, September 26, 2022
In a study published in the journal Cancer, UCLA researchers showed that radiation actually makes breast cancer cells MORE malignant. They found that radiation kills about half of the tumor cells treated.
But radiation also transforms other cells into “induced breast cancer stem cells.” Though cancer stem cells make up less than 5 percent of a tumor, they can regenerate the original tumor. In fact, these new stem cells are up to 30 times more likely to form tumors compared to cancer cells that didn’t get radiation. CSCs can also migrate through blood vessels spreading cancer to secondary locations.
Chemo works the same way.
Researchers from South Dakota State University have found that a compound in cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, cabbage, and cauliflower may target those cancer stem cells. In fact, it may help prevent the recurrence and spread of some cancers.
The compound is called phenethyl isothiocyanate (PEITC). When the researchers added PEITC to a Petri dish with human cervical cancer stem cells about 75 percent of the stem cells died within 24 hours.
The South Dakota researchers found that PEITC slowed the formation of cervical cancer stem cells in a dose-dependent manner. The researchers also found that PEITC significantly reduced the proliferation of both cervical cancer cells and stem cells. In fact, it worked comparably to salinomycin, a chemo drug, but without the toxic side effects.
In addition, the effects of PEITC were significantly better in abrogating cervical cancer stem cell proliferation than paclitaxel, another toxic chemo drug.
More physical activity, less screen time linked to better executive function in toddlers, study finds
University of Illinois at Urbana, September 29, 2022
A new study explored whether adherence to American Academy of Pediatrics guidelines for diet and physical activity had any relationship with toddlers’ ability to remember, plan, pay attention, shift between tasks and regulate their own thoughts and behavior, a suite of skills known as executive function.
Reported in The Journal of Pediatrics, the study found that 24-month-old children who spent less than 60 minutes looking at screens each day and those who engaged in daily physical activity had better executive function than those who didn’t meet the guidelines.
“Executive function underlies your ability to engage in goal-directed behaviors,” said University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign professor Naiman Khan,. “It includes abilities such as inhibitory control, which allows you to regulate your thoughts, emotions and behavior; working memory, by which you are able to hold information in mind long enough to accomplish a task; and cognitive flexibility, the adeptness with which you switch your attention between tasks or competing demands.”
Through its Bright Futures initiative, the AAP recommends that children spend less than 60 minutes looking at screens each day, engage in at least 60 minutes of physical activity, consume five or more servings of fruits and vegetables and minimize or eliminate the consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages.
“We found that toddlers who engaged in less than 60 minutes of screen time per day had significantly greater ability to actively control their own cognition than those who spent more time staring at phones, tablets, televisions and computers,” McMath said. “They had greater inhibitory control, working memory and overall executive function.”
Toddlers who got daily physical activity also did significantly better on tests of working memory than those who didn’t, the researchers found.
How rosemary essential oil can improve memory by 75 percent
Northumbria University (UK),
In a British study, researchers found that sniffing the essential oil of rosemary improved memory by a remarkable 75 percent – making it a possible treatment for memory problems.
The study, conducted by psychologists at Northumbria University in Newcastle, involved 66 people. Some were exposed to a rosemary-scented room, in which four drops of essential oil had been placed on an aroma stream diffuser and switched on for five minutes before the participants entered the room. Another group worked in an unscented room.
The psychologists found that the participants in the rosemary-scented room performed between 60 and 75 percent better on assorted memory tasks and on performing simple arithmetic when compared to the control group – an impressive result. As part of the study, researchers took blood samples to detect levels of 1,8-cineole – the constituent in rosemary linked with improving memory function. Participants in the rosemary room had higher levels of cineole – demonstrating that the compound can enter the bloodstream by way of inhalation.
In their findings, the team concluded that rosemary could have implications for treating memory impairments, especially in older adults who are experiencing some decline. Rosemary seems to be particularly helpful in promoting “prospective memory” – helping people to remember future events such as appointments or medication schedules.
Other studies have supported the ability of rosemary to both promote concentration and enhance memory of past events. Scientifically known as Rosmarinus officinalis, rosemary has long been used by natural healers to boost the immune system, reduce inflammation, fight pathogens and promote healthy digestion. The antioxidant value, or ORAC score, of rosemary is a massive 3,300, giving it the same potent free radical-fighting power of goji berries. Rosemary is rich in carnosic acid, an antioxidant that fights oxidative stress in the brain. Another rosemary constituent, carnosol, is strongly antioxidant and anti-inflammatory as well.
Study confirms energy transfer in different types of energy healing, including Reiki and acupuncture
Holistic Research Institute (Knoxville TN), September 25, 2022
For many people, the benefits of energy healing practices like Reiki are immeasurable. But in a recent study, scientists attempted to do just that: Measure (and confirm) the energy transfer which takes place during a typical Reiki session. Reiki is an ancient practice of energy healing that first rose to fame in Japan during the 1800’s — but different takes on energy healing have existed for centuries. Now, scientists seek to confirm what the healers of the past already knew.
Reiki advocates say that the practice keys in on the flow of universal energy and that Reiki practitioners can transfer energy to their patients by channeling it through their hands. MedicalNewsToday.com reports that at least 60 hospitals in the United States offer Reiki therapy to their patients. Survey data suggests that over a million people will try Reiki or a similar therapy in a given year. Despite the naysayers in “modern” medicine, Reiki continues to grow in popularity.
Maria Kuman, Ph.D. at the Holistic Research Institute in Knoxville, Tennessee, conducted a study to analyze the potential energy transfers that occur during a Reiki healing session. Kuman herself admits that she was more than skeptical at the notion of real energy transfers taking place. To conduct her research, Kuman created patented highly sensitive equipment in order to measure the energy of Reiki practitioners and their patients during practice.
Kuman reports that their results showed that Reiki healers do not lose their own energy while healing. In fact, her equipment showed that there was an increase in energy for the healers, as well as their patients. “This proved the Reiki Masters right when claiming that by healing others they heal themselves,” she notes.
She explained further, “There could be only one explanation to this – the Reiki healers are not using their own body energy to heal. The fact that their energies have increased after healing and their energetic balance has improved means that there is a third source of energy, from which they draw. ”
To that end, Kuman contends that energy healing could be especially useful for disease prevention, by addressing energy imbalances before they lead to illness. Kuman also notes that the practice of acupuncture may offer similar benefits to Reiki, particularly regarding disease prevention.
Low-calorie sugar substitute consumption during adolescence appears to impair memory later in life
University of Southern California, September 29, 2022
A high-sugar diet early in life has been shown to harm brain function, but what about low-calorie sugar substitutes? A new study reveals they may take a heavy toll on the developing brain and gut.
In a study published in the journal JCI Insight, scientists at USC show that adolescent rats that consumed the low-calorie sweetenerssaccharin, ACE-K and stevia exhibited long-term impairments in memory.
The findings align with those from earlier studies in which the researchers show that adolescent rats that consume sugar suffer lingering memory impairment.
Consuming low-calorie sweeteners also affected metabolic signaling in the body, which can lead to diabetes and other metabolism-related diseases.
Rats that consumed low-calorie sweeteners as adolescents were less willing to work for sugar as adults, but they consumed more sugar if it was freely available, another factor that might affect the likelihood of developing metabolic disease.
While most studies of low-calorie sweeteners focus on one substance and use amounts far exceeding the norm, the researchers made sure the study was in line with real-life conditions for people — Sweeteners tested include saccharin, acesulfame potassium (ACE-K) and stevia—which are commonly used in sweetened foods.
In the end, rats consuming sweetener were less likely to remember an object or the path through the maze than those that drank only plain water.
The scientists also found other effects among the rats after they consumed sweeteners.
They had fewer receptors on their tongues that detect sweet taste.
The biological mechanism in their intestines that transports glucose into the blood was altered.
Their brains had changed, specifically in regions associated with memory control and reward-motivated behavior.
Study finds folic acid treatment is associated with decreased risk of suicide attempts
University of Chicago, September 28, 2022
Suicide is one of the leading causes of death in the US, with more than 45,000 people dying by suicide in 2020.
The study, published in JAMA Psychiatry used data from the health insurance claims of 866,586 patients and looked at the relationship between folic acidtreatment and suicide attempts over a two-year period. They found that patients who filled prescriptions for folic acid, also known as vitamin B9, experienced a 44% reduction in suicidal events (suicide attempts and intentional self-harm).
Gibbons initially became interested in folic acid in the context of suicide because of a previous study in which his group looked for relationships between risk of attempting suicide and 922 different prescribed drugs. The study simultaneously screened each drug for associations with increases and decreases in suicide attempts. Surprisingly, folic acid was associated with a decreased risk of suicide attempt, along with drugs expected to be associated with risk of suicide, like antidepressants, anxiolytics, and antipsychotics.
To investigate and further confirm the relationship between folic acid and suicide risk, Gibbons and his co-authors did this new study and focused specifically on folic acid, and accounted for many possible confounding factors, including age, sex, mental health diagnoses, other central nervous system drugs, conditions that affect folic acid metabolism, and more.
They even found that the longer a person took folic acid, the lower their risk of suicide attempt tended to be. Each month of being prescribed folic acid was associated with an additional 5% decrease in risk of suicide attempt during the 24-month follow-up period of their study.
If their findings are confirmed in the new research, folic acid would be a safe, inexpensive, and widely available suicide prevention strategy, and potentially help save thousands of lives.