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Antioxidant in red wine has no benefit at low doses
May 12th, 2014
05:24 PM ET

Antioxidant in red wine has no benefit at low doses

The antioxidant resveratrol does not improve longevity when consumed at levels naturally occurring in foods like grapes, red wine and dark chocolate, according to a new study published Monday in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine.

“We looked at the relationship between resveratrol levels and a lot of health outcomes that are thought to be related to resveratrol, such as cancer and heart disease and lifespan. And we found no relationship,” says Dr. Richard Semba, study author and professor at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

The potential health benefits of consuming moderate amounts of red wine have been much discussed ever since researchers identified the “French paradox” – an observation that the French have lower levels of heart disease despite consuming relatively high amounts of saturated fat.
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Impairment from solvents might last decades
May 12th, 2014
04:00 PM ET

Impairment from solvents might last decades

In the workplace, fumes from solvents such as paints, glues, degreasers and adhesives have been implicated in cognitive damage - in other words, impaired thinking and memory abilities. Now, researchers report in the journal Neurology that the detriments linked to these chemicals might last many years.

"What it shows is that these chemicals might have more long-term effects than have previously been thought, and continue to affect people long after they are retired," said Erika Sabbath, research fellow at the Harvard Center for Population and Development Studies and lead author of the study.

A solvent is a substance used to dissolve another chemical. For instance, water dissolves salt. The solvents targeted in this study included benzene (found in detergents and plastics), chlorinated solvents (found in paint strippers and dry cleaning solutions) and petroleum solvents (found in varnish).

But note that researchers did not directly measure whether these chemicals cause brain damage. They simply found a statistical association between impairment on tests and exposure to chemicals. More research would be needed to prove that one directly results in the other.

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Common chemicals challenge sperm
Endocrine disruptors can can impact sperm's motility, or swimming behavior.
May 12th, 2014
01:43 PM ET

Common chemicals challenge sperm

Chemicals known as endocrine disruptors, commonly found in our food and products such as makeup, sunscreen and toothpaste, have been shown to cause fertility problems. Now scientists have a better understanding of why.

Researchers found endocrine disruptors can interfere with human sperm's ability to move, navigate and/or penetrate an egg. Their study results were published Monday in EMBO reports.

Wait, what's an endocrine disruptor?

Endocrine disruptors are chemicals that interfere with your endocrine system - the system in your body that regulates hormones. These hormones control everything from your metabolism to your sleep cycle to your reproductive system, so messing with them can cause serious issues. FULL POST


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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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