Welcome to my April news update with the pick of the most interesting stories in health and wellbeing over the last month. Please explore these new findings and be sure to share them with your friends, families and colleagues.
With warmest good wishes, – Dr Rosy Daniel
Laying the Foundation: Defining the Building Blocks of Music-Based Interventions
The National Institutes of Health (NIH), in collaboration with the Foundation for the NIH and the Renée Fleming Foundation, are sponsoring an expert panel discussion—the first in a series of three meetings intended to develop evidence-based music therapies for brain disorders of aging. The roundtable format will be used to gather input from individuals representing neuroscience, music therapy and music medicine, behavioral intervention development, clinical trial methodology, and patient advocacy and art-based organizations.
Psychedelic therapy could ‘reset’ depressed brain
A powerful hallucinogenic drug known for its part in shamanic rituals is being trialled as a potential cure for depression for the first time. Participants will be given the drug DMT, followed by talking therapy. It is hoped this could offer an alternative for the significant number of people who don’t respond to conventional pills for depression. Psychedelic-assisted therapy might offer longer-term relief from symptoms, some researchers believe. A growing body of evidence indicates other psychedelic drugs, particularly alongside talking therapy, are safe and can be effective for treating a range of mental illnesses.
The right ‘5-a-day’ mix is 2 fruit and 3 vegetable servings for longer life
Higher consumption of fruits and vegetables is associated with a lower risk of death in men and women, according to data representing nearly 2 million adults. Five daily servings of fruits and vegetables, eaten as 2 servings of fruit and 3 servings of vegetables, may be the optimal amount and combination for a longer life. These findings support current U.S. dietary recommendations to eat more fruits and vegetables and the simple public health message ‘5-a-day.’
Positive Environmental News
Good vibrations: bladeless turbines could bring wind power to your home
The giant windfarms that line hills and coastlines are not the only way to harness the power of the wind, say green energy pioneers who plan to reinvent wind power by forgoing the need for turbine towers, blades – and even wind. “We are not against traditional windfarms,” says David Yáñez, the inventor of Vortex Bladeless. His six-person startup, based just outside Madrid, has pioneered a turbine design that can harness energy from winds without the sweeping white blades considered synonymous with wind power.
How the energy industry impacts the environment
In Texas, the energy industry plays an important role, particularly when it comes to green energy. Because of the prominence coal, oil, and renewable energy play in the Lone Star State, concerns over CO2 emission levels are equally important. Burning fossil fuels and producing cement account for about two-thirds of all carbon dioxide (CO2) and industrial methane released into the atmosphere since 1854. Although the U.S. has cut more CO2 emissions than any other nation and is on pace to meet a 2009 pledge to reduce CO2 emissions by 17% (from 2005 levels) this year, global carbon dioxide emissions have still reached the highest point in human history.
Breast Cancer Initiative
New global breast cancer initiative highlights renewed commitment to improve survival
A major new collaborative effort, the Global Breast Cancer Initiative, is being introduced today by the World Health Organization, with the objective of reducing global breast cancer mortality by 2.5% per year until 2040, thereby averting an estimated 2.5 million deaths. In recognition of International Women’s Day, WHO is hosting an advocacy event “Hearing the call of women with breast cancer” during which the new Initiative will be presented to the global cancer community.
To see lots more exciting news and evidence go to www.health-e-learning.org.uk and see the health-e-information platform.
Researcher – Sophie Daniel, Health and Wellbeing Trust
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