Health

Health most common major stressful event in Americans’ lives last year, poll finds

A new NPR/Robert Wood Johnson Foundation/Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) poll released today that examines the role of stress in Americans’ lives finds that about half of the public (49%) reported that they had a major stressful event or experience in the past year. Nearly half (43%) reported that the most stressful experiences related to health. More than half of those who experienced a great deal of stress in the past month say too…

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Adults with mental illness twice as likely to use tobacco

Kansas adults with mental illness are twice as likely to use tobacco as adults without mental illness, according to a new report by RTI International and funded by the Kansas Health Foundation. The report found 37.8 percent of Kansas adults with mental illness smoke, compared to 17.3 percent of adults without mental illness. Nearly one-half of Kansas adults who experience mental illness reported smoking in the last 30 days. Smoking rates are highest among those…

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How Might New Neurons Buffer Against Stress?

Over the past decade or so, evidence has emerged suggesting that the birth of new neurons in the adult brain’s memory hub, or hippocampus, may play a key role the action of antidepressants, resilience to stress, the benefits of exercise and enriched environments and preventing memory loss. But understanding how it might work has remained elusive. Heather Cameron,Ph.D., chief of the NIMH intramural Unit on Neuroplasticity, discussed findings of ongoing studies on the function of adult neurogenesis in the hippocampus at a…

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Review of ADHD drug approvals highlights gaps between approval process, long-term safety assessment

Over the last 60 years, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved 20 medications for attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) based on clinical trials that were not designed to study their long-term efficacy and safety or to detect rare adverse events, researchers at Boston Children’s Hospital report today in PLOS ONE. The study highlights gaps in how the long-term safety of drugs intended for chronic use in children is assessed as part of the FDA approval…

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Weighty issue: Stress and high-fat meals combine to slow metabolism in women

A new study in women suggests that experiencing one or more stressful events the day before eating a single high-fat meal can slow the body’s metabolism, potentially contributing to weight gain. Researchers questioned study participants about the previous day’s stressors before giving them a meal consisting of 930 calories and 60 grams of fat. The scientists then measured their metabolic rate — how long it took the women to burn calories and fat — and…

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