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General health may tell your Alzheimer's risk
July 13th, 2011
04:51 PM ET

General health may tell your Alzheimer's risk

Age and genetics are the two greatest known factors contributing to Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, but new research  is showing there may be some other surprising indicators.

“Our study suggests that rather than just paying attention to already known risk factors for dementia, such as diabetes or heart disease, keeping up with your general health may help reduce the risk for dementia,” said Kenneth Rockwood, M.D., of Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, author of the study.

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July 13th, 2011
03:55 PM ET

Taking meds before exposure cuts HIV risk for heterosexuals

Heterosexuals who are HIV negative can significantly reduce their risk of infection by taking a daily dose of an antiviral drug, according to a new study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The study, called TDF2, followed 1,200 uninfected heterosexual men and women between the ages of 18 and 39 years in Botswana, Africa.

Study participants took a tablet containing tenofovir disoproxil fumarate and emitricitabine (TDF/FTC), whose brand name is Truvada, or a placebo. On average, patients were followed for a year although some were followed for about three and a half years. The risk of infection was reduced 63% overall, but for participants who actually got the drugs, that risk decreased by 78%.

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Tri Challenge: Mixed feelings about what's next
6-Pack member Stasia Cirricione cycles with Ironman Champion Tim DeBoom in Hawaii.
July 13th, 2011
03:08 PM ET

Tri Challenge: Mixed feelings about what's next

Since January, six iReporters have been training in the Fit Nation Triathlon Challenge. We’re following along as they prepare to compete alongside Dr. Sanjay Gupta in the August 7 Nautica NYC Triathlon.

As the 2011 Nautica New York City Triathlon approaches (24 days and counting!), I have such mixed feelings about the end of my first season as a newbie triathlete and the race that will be the culmination of the 2011 CNN Fit Nation 6-pack. I’m excited and nervous for the race, I’m looking forward to shifting my focus for the fall and winter months, and I’m sad that my journey with my other 6-pack friends is almost over.

I started out with a fire burning brighter than a thousand suns. I’d lost some weight prior to the whole experience and this was the next piece of the puzzle, the next fork in the road leading towards a healthier weight and a healthier life. As the seven months of training has gone by, I’ve lost a bit of my oomph, but I’m still going strong. I can see the finish line, so to speak.

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Could bin Laden hunt lead to more polio?
July 13th, 2011
01:55 PM ET

Could bin Laden hunt lead to more polio?

Leaders of the Global Campaign to Eradicate Polio are concerned that a reported CIA-led ruse could slow down an ambitious anti-polio push in Pakistan. The World Health Organization and Pakistan’s government renewed a massive vaccination effort in January, in part with a new $50 million pledge from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

This week, The Guardian and the New York Times reported that health workers went door-to-door in the town where Osama bin Laden was holed up, offering vaccinations against Hepatitis B.

Reportedly, the visits were part of a coordinated effort with the CIA, to try to collect DNA from bin Laden relatives to aid in his eventual identification. CIA officials would not comment, but residents of the Abbottabad neighborhood where bin Laden was found told CNN that two women did visit homes, offering free vaccinations. Christy Feig, a spokeswoman for the World Health Organization, said it was not part of a WHO campaign.  Michal Fishman, a spokeswoman for the Gates Foundation,  tells CNN that injectable hepatitis vaccinations would never be given door-to-door, unlike oral polio drops.

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July 13th, 2011
12:07 PM ET

Should parents lose custody of obese children?

Researchers from Harvard University say inadequate or unskilled parental supervision can leave severely obese children vulnerable to the societal influences that promote an unhealthy lifestyle and are suggesting that this may be a form of child abuse that authorities should act on.

In a commentary posted Wednesday in the Journal of the American Medical Association, professor Lindsey Murtagh and Dr. David S. Ludwig suggest that severely obese children be removed from their homes, and that government involvement may be justifiable because of the imminent health risks and the “parents’ chronic failure to address medical problems.”

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July 13th, 2011
12:03 PM ET

Why do my boyfriend's feet sweat?

Every weekday, a CNNHealth expert doctor answers a viewer question. On Wednesdays, it's Dr. Otis Brawley, chief medical officer at the American Cancer Society.

Question asked by Juliet from Kansas

My boyfriend's feet sweat and burn profusely. He washes them and changes socks/shoes several times a day. He's tried every athlete's foot remedy at doctor's advice, and nothing works. What could this be? He's very clean, doesn't have bubbles or blisters or anything unbecoming on his feet. He even warms his feet in front of a stove before putting socks and shoes back on.
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Seeking serenity: How high-achievers chill
July 13th, 2011
07:19 AM ET

Seeking serenity: How high-achievers chill

Editor's note: CNN contributor Amanda Enayati ponders the theme of Seeking serenity: The quest for well-being and life balance in stressful times.

Happiness - or rather, the quest for happiness - was in the air at this year’s Aspen Ideas Fest as the topic was examined rather earnestly from every angle: the history of happiness, its psychology, neuroscience, economics and geography.

There was even a session on how to recognize happiness, though fairly certain of my abilities on that front, I played hooky in favor of pedaling around town on a bicycle.

And truth be told, Aspen in the summertime is rather easy to be happy in: 360 degrees of opulent white-flecked mountains covered with shocks of gorgeous green in at least a dozen shades, vast sweeps of vivid wildflowers swaggering on every corner, the freshest air completely devoid of frizz-inducing humidity and rather frequent sightings of chipmunks and celebrity types.

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About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.

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