Passion, exercise, and relationships protect against cognitive decline

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In a recent paper, researchers reviewed studies linking three key lifestyle factors to brain health. Mint Images RF/Getty Images
  • In a recent paper, researchers reviewed studies linking exercise, relationships, and passion to brain health.
  • They found reasonable evidence that all three factors offer protection against cognitive decline.
  • Their review noted that randomized controlled trials are needed to confirm their findings.

Changes to cognitive function during the aging process are related to the brain’s white and gray matter volume.

Gray matter consists of biological structures, including neuronal cell bodies, synapses, and capillaries, whereas white matter consists of myelinated axons, through which signals are carried between neurons.

Gray matter volume steadily declines at around 10 years of age. Research suggest that medically and cognitively healthier individuals experience less brain atrophy than less healthy individuals.

Studies also show that regular exercisestrong relationships, and passion are key to maintaining a

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Thumbs down to ‘middle finger’ health campaign in New Zealand | New Zealand

A New Zealand health campaign designed to help curb hepatitis C has hit a stumbling block after one of its advertisements showing people raising the middle finger was deemed too offensive to air.

The associate health minister, Ayesha Verrall, launched the “Stick it to Hep C” campaign in July, to raise awareness over the virus, which kills roughly 200 New Zealanders a year.

The campaign included videos, outdoor posters and online material featuring actors raising their middle finger to another person, while smiling. The advertisement then goes on to show an actor having his middle finger pricked for a blood test, to determine if he has the blood-borne virus.

But the Advertising Standards Authority has upheld a complaint describing the advertising imagery as “deeply offensive”.

“The gesture is long established as ‘sign language’ for a series of very rude words, in short “F*%$ You!”,” the complainant said. “It has no

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Oklahomans react to bill’s controversial stipulation for OU Health

OU Health will receive more than $39 million worth of COVID-19 relief money for mental health care, but the funding comes with a controversial stipulation.| MORE | Bill requires OU Children’s Hospital to stop performing gender-affirming care to get relief money Oklahoma lawmakers on Thursday voted to require the hospital group to stop requiring some services for transgender people. Senate Bill 3 allocates more than $39 million to OU Health for a children’s mental health center. That money, according to the bill, comes with the requirement that OU stops providing gender reassignment or affirming care to children – even though the funding was never going to that specific department. Following Thursday’s vote, several Oklahomans provided their different perspectives, arguing the legislation protects children while others say it does just the opposite.”Who would do that? Who would take away a doctor from a child, especially, I mean, trans youth have some …

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Spread the word about PACT Act health care eligibility

You’ve likely already heard about how the PACT Act could impact your care and benefitsbut did you know it also expands health care eligibility for many Veterans?

When President Biden signed the PACT Act Aug. 10, 2022, it was initiated one of the largest expansions of VA benefits in history. This includes extended VA health care enrollment eligibility to Vietnam-era, Gulf War-era and Post-9/11 Veterans.

You can help spread the word about expanded eligibility to enroll in VA health care for your Veteran friends who have not previously enrolled. Here are all the details you need to know to help them get the care they earned and deserve.

For Vietnam-era Veterans

Vietnam-era Veterans who served in the following locations and time periods are eligible to apply for enrollment beginning now:

  • Republic of Vietnam between Jan. 9, 1962, and May 7, 1975
  • Thailand at any US or Royal Thai base
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CDC no longer recommends universal masking in health facilities

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention no longer recommends universal masking in health care settings, unless the facilities are in areas of high COVID-19 transmission.

The agency quietly issued the updates as part of an overhaul to its infection control guidance for health workers published late Friday afternoon. It marks a major departure from the agency’s previous recommendation for universal masking.

“Updates were made to reflect the high levels of vaccine-and infection-induced immunity and the availability of effective treatments and prevention tools,” the CDC’s new guidance says.

Now, the CDC says facilities in regions without high transmission can “choose not to require” all doctors, patients, and visitors to mask. Transmission is different from the community levels CDC uses to guide non-health care settings.

Community transmission refers to measures of the presence and spread of SARS-CoV-2, the CDC said.

“It is the metric currently recommended to guide select practices in

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