Ever since Alexander Fleming discovered penicillin growing naturally on a petri dish, we have been aware of the power of chemicals produced by microbes.
Around 200,000 people in Australia suffer from a debilitating illness often branded with the unfortunate name of chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). I say “unfortunate” because this implies patients are simply tired, run-down, burnt-out or overly stressed.
There is a widespread belief that sugar is the sole cause of diabetes. After all, the disease is characterized by high levels of sugar in the blood.
When we are in pain, it takes over our identity and clouds our perception until it is relieved. Some of this is a natural physiological response—pain is unpleasant and universally unwanted. Quite often, chronic pain becomes the story of our lives, where all our interactions with the world are colored by it.
Coca-Cola is the world’s most popular carbonated soft drink. The original is made with sugar, but the others contain artificial sweeteners that are now linked to a rise in obesity and diabetes.
Helping people with pain, whether it be physical or emotional, could limit the need for opioids. Data indicate that opioid abuse is primarily a male problem, concentrated in working class and low-income white communities, and rapidly expanding to Hispanic communities.
Schizophrenia is considered a disorder of the mind, influencing the way a person thinks, feels and behaves. But our latest research shows that organs, other than the brain, also change at the onset of the disease.
Playing youth tackle football may lead to earlier onset of cognitive, behavior, and mood symptoms in later life, according to a new study.
A “smart home” dresser prototype may help people with dementia dress themselves through automated assistance. This would enable them to maintain independence and dignity and provide their caregivers with a much-needed break.
Several studies have shown that spending time in nature is good for health. Now new research has looked specifically at asthma and found that living in green neighbourhoods protects children from developing the condition
Injury to the adult brain is all too common. A brain injury will often show up on brain scans as a well-defined area of damage.
Activating something called the behavioral immune system puts a damper on dating, new research shows. The theory is that perceiving, rightly or wrongly, the threat of disease unconsciously activates this system.
Each person experiences pain differently, from an emotional perspective as well as a physical one, and responds to pain differently.
About a third of cancers could be prevented with lifestyle changes – that’s roughly a million cases of cancer in Europe each year. Many people are still confused about risk factors, despite vast sums being spent on public health education campaigns.
Most Americans go to sleep later on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday nights than during the week, a new analysis confirms. The study of data from physical activity monitors suggests that younger people, especially, are more naturally prone to go to bed and wake up later.
Researchers have identified 44 genomic variants, or loci, with a statistically significant association with depression. The meta-analysis involves research with more than 135,000 people with major depression and more than 344,000 controls.
Our life expectancy has increased dramatically over the past several decades, with advances in medical research, nutrition and health care seeing us live well into our 80s.
Arthritis is the leading cause of pain and disability in the UK. The disorder typically causes pain and inflammation in the joints, and can affect people of all ages.
The gut microbiome could be the culprit behind arthritis and joint pain that plagues people who are obese, according to a new study.
It might be a spot, lump, bump or polyp you’ve found suspicious or bothersome enough to ask a doctor to have a look at. The doctor sends what she has excised for testing and tells you it’s “pre-cancerous”. But what exactly does that mean, and is it cause for alarm?
Recent scientific studies have claimed, almost vampire-like, that transfusions of blood from teenagers can help delay or reverse the ageing process. Where do these claims come from? Do they stack up? And how long will it be before we have the power to stave off what now is inevitable?
Drawing on their decades of practice along with the latest medical data, Gill and three geriatric experts agreed to help identify examples of what are often — but not always – considered to be signposts of normal aging for folks who practice good health habits and get recommended preventive care.
When we are willing to stay even a moment with uncomfortable energy, we gradually learn not to fear it. Then when we see someone in distress, we completely open our hearts and minds to whatever arises. Exhaling, we send out relief from the pain with the intention that we and others be happy.
After many years of practicing energy techniques, specifically shiatsu, I have been able to realize to what extent, for each one of us, our body speaks to us (shouting even) about what we are really experiencing in the depths of ourself. Our deepest reality, our nonconscious, our mind, our soul -- whatever your preferred term is -- speaks to us constantly, telling us what isn't working.
You might be intrigued by what your genes could tell you about your ancestry or the health risks hidden in your DNA. If so, you’re not alone. Fascination with personal genetics is fuelling an explosion of online DNA testing. More than 12 million people have been tested – 7 million through ancestry.com alone.
Maintaining good posture is not something we think about in our everyday lives. We perhaps take it for granted that we can get up in between computer sessions, have a stretch while making a cup of tea or roll over in bed.
Many of us have become so steeped in what is wrong with ourselves in relationship that dysfunction becomes our accepted norm. We are so expert in why we can't commit; or keep attracting abusive partners; or how our parents' poor role model squashed our self-esteem; or; or; or . . .
Scientists have searched for and recently found out why some people live to be over one hundred, while being physically active, happy, and healthy. A team of experts in Tokyo researched which processes in the body may be responsible for not only successful aging but also for longevity. They have identified the common denominator, and that is inflammation.
The proportion of adults with diabetes around the world has risen from 4.7% in 1980 to more than 8.5% today.
We’re all attracted to a beautiful face. We like to look at them, we feel drawn to them and we aspire to have one.
In the last few decades scientists have been discovering the many uses of vitamin D and the possible effects of not getting enough of it.
In the wake of mass shootings and other tragedies, a frequent refrain is: Why don’t we get those dangerous people off the streets?
“He is wired differently to you and me, this child of mine. He doesn’t like loud noises, or dark spaces, or strangers touching his head”.
As many as 70 million Americans may not be getting enough sleep. Men get fewer hours of sleep than women. A Sleep Foundation poll of parents suggested that American children are getting one hour of sleep or more per night less than what their body and brain require.
People with stage III colon cancer who regularly eat nuts are at significantly lower risk of cancer recurrence and mortality than those who don’t, according to a new study.
The mid-1980s was the era of cocaine and marijuana, when “Just Say No” was the centerpiece of the war on drugs and the government’s efforts to stem drug use and addiction. Since then, prescription opioids have become the nation’s drug scourge.
The “obesity epidemic” deserves much more serious attention than it is getting. It is, after all, thought to be killing nearly 3m people a year worldwide.
Clinical depression is an affliction of the mind, body, and spirit that affects over 17 million Americans. If you are the partner, parent, child, or friend of someone who is undergoing a depressive episode, your understanding of the illness and how you relate to the patient can either support or deter his or her ability to get well.
Someone asked me what living with cancer for thirteen years is like, never knowing whether the disease will remain under control. I said, “It’s like being hurled into a classic 1950s horror movie where you know terrible things will happen but you don’t know when they will occur.”
Obesity was designated a disease in 2013 by the American Heart Association and American Medical Association. Obesity, defined as a body mass index of 30 or higher, had long been identified as a health condition
“Rampant” and “elderly” are words rarely used in the same sentence, unless we are talking of the percentage of people over 65 years old worldwide
From the way you move and sleep, to how you interact with people around you, depression changes just about everything.
Circadian rhythm disruptions common to Alzheimer’s disease occur before memory loss and other symptoms in people whose memories are intact but whose brain scans show early, preclinical evidence of the condition, according to new research.
This has been a particularly bad influenza season, starting early especially in the South and West Coast in the U.S. This follows a severe season in Australia during our summer.
People over the age of 65 make up a larger percentage of the global population than ever before. As this ageing of society only really took off in the last century, it’s unsurprising that much of what we think we know about ageing is untrue.
What is your fatigue trying to tell you right now, this very moment of your life? This is an important question that I want you to ask yourself right now. At different times of the day, you'll have different answers, and at different times of your life, you'll have different answers...
Researchers have developed a blood test that can detect the presence of eight common cancers. Called CancerSEEK, the blood test detects tiny amounts of DNA and proteins released into the blood stream from cancer cells.
Remember that whatever the source of your energy leaks, you are the one who is best able to make changes that will bring about improved energy levels in your life. As tempting as it may seem to blame someone or something else for past injustices or handicaps in your life, you will gain...
Certain types of stress interact with immune cells and can regulate how these cells respond to allergens, ultimately causing physical symptoms and disease, a new study suggests.
Using prescription drugs or over-the-counter products like gums, mints or patches won’t increase your chances of quitting smoking a year later, according to a new study.
After cigarettes, alcohol is perhaps the most common carcinogen that humans voluntarily expose themselves to. How this simple substance promotes cancer, though, has not been clear. But our latest study sheds some light on the possible mechanism.
The mind of addiction goes like this: “So I need to stop playing computer games. I will take up marathon running instead.” Keeping away from the addiction does not stop the need for addiction and the need to look at the underlying pain or unhappiness...
Going to the doctor usually involves exposing the body with all its faults and flaws. In a culture that increasingly values self control and bodily perfection, being sick or even merely old can lead to feelings of shame and inadequacy.
A study has found weight loss could reverse type 2 diabetes. The UK clinical trial showed that 46% of people who followed a low-calorie diet, among other measures, for 12 months were able to stop their type 2 diabetes medications.
Researchers have identified five new categories of mental illness that cut across current diagnoses of anxiety and depression.
We are all born with the genes we inherit from our parents, but how and whether our body expresses these genes is gaining increasing attention in the emerging science of epigenetics.
Varicose veins is a term commonly used to describe visible leg veins. But true varicose veins are dilated and very prominent.
As Movember has come to a close, and men flaunt or shave the facial hair they have grown, there is something people should know — prostate cancer screening is ineffective and can do more harm than good.
Since World War II, rates of depression have doubled in the U.S., and depression is now the second most disabling illness in the Western world after heart disease. I have organized a holistic program for the prevention and treatment of depression into five areas — physical self-care, mental/emotional self-care, spiritual self-care, people support, and lifestyle habits.
When asked to describe a typical child with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), most people would describe a young boy who climbs on things, is impatient and does not do what he is told.
Around 50m people worldwide are thought to have Alzheimer’s disease. And with rapidly ageing populations in many countries, the number of sufferers is steadily rising.
Women experience the menopause between the ages of around 45 and 55, but their experiences of this significant stage of life are diverse. Each woman’s menopause is unique.
Anxiety and depression are the most prevalent psychological disorders today. Major depression alone is expected to be the second-leading cause of disability by 2020 worldwide. I personally suffered from intractable depression and chronic dysthymia for thirty-five or more years. I also suffered from anxiety and panic attacks...
Chemical aversion therapy may be effective in curbing alcohol abuse among heavy drinkers, a new small scale study indicates.
Could a diet high in refined sugars make children and adults more susceptible to opioid addiction and overdose? New research, from the laboratory of behavioral neuroscience at the University of Guelph, suggests it could.
Ear infections can be painful, cause difficulty with balance and can also lead to temporary hearing loss. Ear infections are the number one reason for preschool children visits to the GP.
By now, most people are aware of the enormity of the opioid epidemic. In 2015, over 33,000 Americans died from an opioid overdose – more from opioid pain relievers than heroin.
Breast cancer is the most common cancer among women in China, according to the latest data from China’s national cancer registry.
It’s commonly accepted that symptoms in psychiatric conditions like bipolar disorder or schizophrenia present differently between different people.
Once known as multiple personality disorder, dissociative identity disorder remains one of the most intriguing but poorly understood mental illnesses.
From the 1980s, when prostate screening became available, many men over 40 were diagnosed with early stage prostate cancer even though they may not have had any symptoms.
A recent study published in the journal Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise was reported in many media outlets as a bringer of “bad news” to television watchers, with the Herald Sun noting: Every hour you spend sitting watching TV makes you more likely to die from inflammation-related diseases...
Why do they do it? This is a question that friends and families often ask of those who are addicted. It’s difficult to explain how drug addiction develops over time.
Many of us would have seen, if not tried, various products claiming to clean the dirt out of our pores. From scrubs to cleansers to plasters that stick to our faces, there are many tools at our disposal.
The ready availability of technology may make the children of today faster at configuring a new smartphone, but does all of that screen time affect the development of their eyes?
Despite an abundance of evidence illustrating that weight gain is caused by a complex cocktail of factors, obesity is often solely attributed to poor individual lifestyle choices – such as diet and exercise.
I was sitting on the sofa across from Christine in her home. She offered me a cup of coffee. Each time I visited, she sat in the same spot — the place where she felt most comfortable and safe.
What most people don’t know is that with a bit of hard work, it is possible to become non-diabetic again.
A succession of surveys by Saga have shown that we are more frightened of developing dementia in old age than any other condition including cancer, and the language we use to talk about it: “raw horror” and “living death” speak volumes of the deep unease the prospect of dementia stirs.
As we get older, our thinking skills often deteriorate: we get slower, more forgetful, less good at learning new things. Yet not everyone experiences these changes to the same degree. Some remain mentally sharp...
If you don’t smoke, then your major risk factor for dying is probably your age. That’s because we have nearly eliminated mortality in early life, thanks to advances in science and engineering.
It is surprising that sighing has not been a topic of empirical psychological research until the twenty-first century. About the only place sighing makes an appearance is in studies of panic disorder, where it has been shown that such patients “hit reset” about twice as frequently as control subjects...
Many women get happier in later life, report researchers, particularly in the years between 50 and 70.
About 10% of us (including 20% of people over 60 and 50% of people over 70) suffer from fungal nail infections. So why do we get them, and does it matter?
It’s widely recognized that emotions can directly affect stomach function. The brain communicates with the gastrointestinal system. A whole ecosystem comprising 100 trillion bacteria living in our bowels is an active participant in this brain-gut chat.
The concept of schizophrenia is dying. Harried for decades by psychology, it now appears to have been fatally wounded by psychiatry, the very profession that once sustained it.
Our modern world is loud. Just sitting in a car, or an airplane, or watching movie previews, we are bombarded with sound.
Over-diagnosis occurs when someone is diagnosed with a disease that wouldn’t harm them, or when treatment does more harm than good.
In the hospital waiting room, heart pounding and mind whirring, surrounded by a sea of apprehensive-looking fellow patients, I settled in to wait for my name to be called. Outside the sun was shining on a warm winter’s afternoon...
Stress is bad for our physical and mental health. It has been linked to several leading causes of death, including heart disease and mood disorders, such as depression.
Many people suffer regularly from heartburn - a burning feeling in the chest caused by stomach acid travelling up the food pipe (oesophagus) after eating.
In the United States, nearly 290,000 women died from heart disease in 2013 – that’s about one in every four female deaths.
Silicosis is a group of occupational lung diseases caused by breathing in silica dust.
“Doctor, what caused my cancer?” For doctors, this question is often perplexing. Some of the population risk factors are known, but when it comes to specific cases, only assumptions can be made.
Headache and nausea aside, the morning after an evening of drinking can be filled with regret, anxiety and misery. But it can also be a time of humor, story-telling and emotional bonding.
Studies reveal one woman for every nine men is diagnosed with so-called “high-functioning” autism, that is, autism without intellectual disability.
Sperm count in men from North America, Europe, Australia and New Zealand declined by 50-60% between 1973 and 2011, according to a new study.
A new study has found something remarkable: the activation of a particular type of immune cell in the brain can, on its own, lead to obesity in mice.
After I was told by my surgeon that he thought I had about thirty days to live, I was put in touch with an exceptional cancer survivor who was convinced that healing and forgiveness are inextricably linked. After weeks of resistance, I took her counsel to heart...
As the number of lives affected by cancer has increased around the globe every year, it is hard to find someone in our circle of family, friends and colleagues whose lives have not been touched in some way.