Archive for July, 2007

A possible new treatment for sleep apnea

Delivering warm, humidified air through a nasal cannula can significantly reduce the symptoms of mild obstructive sleep apnea, Johns Hopkins researchers have discovered. The standard treatment for sleep apnea is to provide continuous positive airway pressure, or CPAP, through a mask worn during sleep. A recent pilot study suggests that warm, humidified air delivered through a nasal tube might also work and be easier to use.

The major issue with CPAP has been poor adherence because many patients do not wear the mask for more than several hours per night, or abandon therapy completely. This new treatment might eventually replace continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) to control apnea, researchers speculated.

via American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine July 2007

Lentils better than white bread for weight loss

For weight loss and cholesterol control, a diet high in foods that release energy slowly and consistently into the blood stream, such as beans, whole-grain bread, and unsweetened cereals, is better than a diet high in foods that release sugar rapidly, such as white bread, white rice, and soft drinks. Foods with a lower glycemic index stimulate less insulin release from the pancreas, thus minimizing appetite. There is some evidence, Australian researchers found, that even when the caloric intake is the same, foods with a low glycemic index may stimulate greater weight loss in obese individuals. Lowering the glycemic load of the diet can be simply incorporated into a person’s lifestyle.

via The Cochrane Library, July 2007

Omega-3 fatty acids appear to have significant antidepressant effects

In a recent review of published clinical trials, researchers have again found a significant correlation between increased intake of omega-3 fatty acids with a lower prevalence of depression. Fish and fish oil, as well as flax seed oil, are rich sources of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs). Appropriate dosages and the best composition of omega-3 supplements remains to be determined by clinical researchers.

via Journal of Clinical Psychiatry