What’s Hot for Health

Fido is smarter thank your doctor

When it comes to detecting lung cancer, dogs may just be our best friends. In a small study published in the European Respiratory Journal, pooches were able to correctly pick out humans with lung cancer 71 percent of the time – 20 percent more accurately than the typically used CT tests. How did they do it? By smelling breath samples. People with lung cancer may have a marker on their breath that dogs can detect. Previous studies have shown that pups may also be able to sniff out breast, colorectal, and skin cancers. These astute canines could eventually help us develop more accurate cancer tests.

Just how fruity is your cereal?

The photo on the box may feature juicy blueberries, but that doesn’t mean there are any inside. Those “berries” may be globs of flour, sugar, and additives – or such falsities as “strawberry flavored apples”, which are freeze-dried apples with flavoring and dye. If there is fruit listed but it’s fifth or later in the ingredients, the benefits are negligible. Stick to a simple cereal like shredded wheat, then add in your own fruit. You’ll get all the fruit’s nutrients, plus extra satiety from its fiber and water.

Beat the holiday blues

If you’re more ho-hum than ho-ho-ho these days, you’re not alone. Feeling down is part of our natural cycle – this is the darkest time of year. Doctor suggests vitamin D (2,000 IU a day) and fish oil (2-3 grams a day) for a natural mood boost. Other simple strategy. Plan ahead. Having scheduled activities can help you avoid feeling isolated. Make sure to spend time with positive people, because depression is contagious – and so is happiness.

Go ahead, have wine with dinner

Raise a glass to long-lasting good health: Women who are moderate drinkers (one or two alcoholic drinks a day) at midlife are more likely than nondrinkers to reach age 70 without having any major chronic disease (including cancer, diabetes, and heart disease) or major cognitive or physical impairment, according to a new Harvard University study. What’s more, the more often you drink, the better. Those who had one or two drinks five to seven days a week were much more likely to stay well into their golden years than those who drank only once or twice a week. Now there’s a prescription we’ll gladly stick to!

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