Can a fat protect you from diabetes?
December 20th, 2010
05:01 PM ET

Can a fat protect you from diabetes?

For those trying to eat a healthy diet, whole-fat dairy and trans fats are usually not on the menu — at least, not yet. Scientists have narrowed in on a trans fat component found mainly in dairy fat that may ward off type 2 diabetes and protect cardiovascular health. While the research is far from conclusive and requires much further study, it suggests fats may play a more complex role in human health than previously thought.

Researchers found that adults with high levels of a fatty acid (one of the main parts of fat molecules) called trans-palmitoleic acid in their blood had a three-fold lower risk for diabetes, according to a study published Monday in the Annals of Internal Medicine. This naturally produced trans fat component is found mainly in dairy, as well as some meats. These subjects also had lower body fat, higher good cholesterol levels, and lower triglyceride levels, which are all associated with better cardiovascular well-being.

“It’s exciting because traditionally fats were just seen as artery cloggers, but they seem to be both harmful and protective,” said lead author and Harvard epidemiologist Dariush Mozaffarian. “The fatty acid world is becoming more interesting and complex.” FULL POST

October 5th, 2010
10:05 AM ET

Priorities may drive happiness

Most of us have thought, 'If only I could win the lottery, then I'd be happy forever.' But according to one of the first studies to look at long-term happiness, major life events, like a sudden cash windfall, are not what make us happy, rather, it's the priorities we set in life.

"The main thing that's surprising about these results is that it challenges this whole field," said lead author Melbourne University sociologist Bruce Headey. "This study goes against the prevailing wisdom that happiness is fixed." The study was published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.


September 30th, 2010
05:00 PM ET

South Asians have higher heart risks after transplant

South Asians have more than twice the risk  of  a major cardiac event after a kidney transplant compared with other selected populations, according to a study published Thursday.  And the lack of information about the unique cardiovascular health risks confronting South Asians may be resulting in preventable heart disease.

Dr. Ramesh Prasad, a nephrologist, or kidney disease specialist, noticed that his South Asian patients (descended from the Indian subcontinent) who got kidney transplants appeared to have many more heart attacks than patients of other ethnic groups.


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.