HEADLINES / TRENDS l STATS l RESEARCH l MEDIA l PEOPLE

February 2015

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N U M B E R S

Cardiovascular Disease

in the US, Good but Bad

 

30.8%

Decline in death rates attributable to cardiovascular
disease from 2001 to 2011

BUT

1 in 10

adults have diabetes, a major cardiac risk factor;
up to 95% of them have Type 2

35.1%

Decline in rate of stroke death 2001 to 2011

BUT

32.6%

Adults have hypertension, a major stroke risk factor

6.2%

Drop in percentage of adults who smoke from 1998 (24.1%) to 2013 (17.9%)

BUT

46.6%

Adults have ideal cholesterol levels (under 200 mg/dL total cholesterol)

 

All numbers taken from “Heart Disease and

Stroke Statistics—2015 Update”

(American Heart Association, Circulation)

 


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E D I T O R ' S C H O I C E

Caring for Joints and Skin

With BioCell Collagen

What does your knee have to do with your skin? Both depend on healthy connective tissue for peak function—and healthy connective tissue depends on collagen, the protein that gives skin and joints their structural integrity.

Aging degrades collagen quality over time, leading to creaky joints and poor skin tone. But BioCell Collagen provides a clean source of type II collagen (which in turn boosts levels of types I and III) along with hyaluronic acid and chondroitin sulfate, mirroring the composition of human cartilage. Made with a patented process for consistent quality and safety, BioCell Collagen is fast-acting and highly absorbable. In one study people who took it reported less pain; in another participants experienced fewer signs of facial aging such as dryness and wrinkles. To learn more, visit biocellcollagen.com.

 

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Vitamin D May Improve Response

to Colon Cancer Therapy

People who have advanced colon cancer and higher vitamin D levels appear to respond better to chemotherapy—and survived a third longer than those with low levels of the sunshine vitamin.

Researchers at Harvard Medical School in Boston measured vitamin D levels in 1,043 newly diagnosed patients participating in a clinical trial comparing three forms of treatment, all of which combined chemotherapy with targeted anti-cancer drugs.

According to results reported before a Gastrointestinal Cancers Symposium in San Francisco, patients with the highest amounts of vitamin D in their bloodstreams survived an average of 32.6 months compared with 24.5 months for those with the lowest levels.

In addition, cancer progressed more slowly in the high-D group, an average of 12.2 months versus 10 months in people with the least vitamin D.

The study team noted that certain cancer patients tended to have lower vitamin D levels. They included African Americans, people who were overweight or older and those who weren’t physically active or were in poor shape.

Vitamin D levels were also lower among people who live in northern states and among those whose blood was drawn during the winter and spring; D is created in skin exposed to sunshine. Other sources include some fatty fish such as sardines, fortified milk, eggs and some type of mushrooms such as shiitakes, along with
supplements.

Vitamin D, in concert with calcium and vitamin K, helps maintain healthy bones. D also promotes the maturation of infection-fighting white blood cells, and deficits have been linked to a higher risk of developing diabetes.

 

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W O R D

Phytonutrient

Any of the thousands of natural chemicals in plants

that help protect them from fungi, pests and other threats;

many, such as the resveratrol in grapes, has been found

to promote human health.


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Q U O T E


 

Holding onto anger, resentment

and hurt only gives you tense

muscles, a headache and a sore

jaw from clenching your teeth.

 

—Joan Lunden

 


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Blueberry Powder May

Keep Arteries in the Pink

Blueberries, already celebrated for providing a host of health benefits, may improve arterial well-being and reduce blood pressure when taken in powdered form.

Researchers at Florida State University gave either blueberry powder or a placebo to 48 women for eight weeks. Participants were assigned to the two groups randomly and neither they nor the study team knew who was taking which substance.

Blood pressures went down among volunteers taking the blueberry powder, with an average reduction of 5.1% in systolic (the upper number) and 6.3% in diastolic (the lower one). What’s more, a measurement called brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity went down in the blueberry group, indicating a reduction in arterial stiffness.

The researchers linked the improvements with increases in nitric oxide, a substance that helps relax blood vessel walls. Stiff, poorly functioning arteries play an important role in the development of heart disease.

Study results were published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

“The changes in blood pressure noted in this study are of clinical significance as they demonstrate that blood pressure can be favorably altered by the addition of a single dietary component,” said lead author Sarah Johnson, PhD, RD, CSO, assistant director of the Center for Advancing Exercise and Nutrition Research on Aging, College of Human Sciences at Florida State.

“To our knowledge, this is the first study to evaluate the effects of blueberries on arterial function as was done in this study, as well as in this study population,” added corresponding author Bahram H. Arjmandi, PhD, RD, the center’s director.

Consumption of blueberries has been linked to improvements in cognitive health and blood sugar control.

 

More Information about American

Cardiovascular Health

2,150 

Americans who die of cardiovascular disease every day

610,000 

Americans who have a first stroke every year;
another 185,00 have a recurrent stroke

8.2 years 

Average decrease in lifespan among women with diabetes;
7.5 years among men

30.5% 

Increase in prevalence of type 2 diabetes in children and teenagers between 2001 and 2009

100 million+ 

Americans age 20 and older who have total cholesterol
levels of 200 mg/dL or greater; nearly 31 million have
levels at or above 240 mg/dL

17.3% 

Americans who were found to have undiagnosed hypertension

$320.1 billion 

Estimated annual costs of cardiovascular disease as of 2011; includes $195.6 billion in direct costs, such as hospitalizations, doctor visits and medications


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