Hypertension predicts dementia in seniors losing ability to organize and make decisions.

February 10, 2010

-Dr. Kathy Kathson, PhD, CMC

According to February’s issue of Archives of Neurology, high blood pressure appears to have a correlation to dementia in senior citizens with impaired decision making and organizational thoughts. High blood pressure maybe be a risk factor in dementia in mid-life, however there is conflicting evidence of individuals with those who have high blood pressure in late-life.

Individuals with memory function impairment are more likely to have Alzheimer’s disease, while those with an impairment followed by a stroke or blood-vessel related problem may experience executive functioning. Executive functioning refers to the mental process involved in a goal-directed activity.

A hypothesis was tested by Shahram Oveisgharan, M.D., of University of Western Ontario, Canada, and Isafahn University of Medical Sciences to see if there was a correlation with thinking, learning and memory impairment and high blood pressure.  990 older adults (average age of 83) with cognitive impairment with no dementia was studied over a five year follow up. The study showed that dementia developed the same rate among participants with and without high blood pressure, specifically (59.5% of individuals with high blood pressure v.s. 64.2% without.) The study also shows that patients with only executive dysfunction, high blood pressure was associated with risk of developing dementia.

Around the world, neurologic disorders are one of the top disability-adjusted life years, where cerebrovascular disease is the most common risk, followed by dementia. There is no prevention or theraputic solution to solve the problem.  In fact, we should understand and realize that high blood pressure may cause dementia.

Source:

http://www.homecareassistance.com/content/?c=86&p=968

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Study reveals that falls by senior citizens are caused by poor central and side vision.

February 8, 2010

-Dr. Kathy Johnson, PhD, CMC

A new study  describes a major concern of senior citizens falling because of reduced central and side vision. According to statistics from the journal of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, 35 to 40 percent of people who are healthy and independent above the age of 65 will fall each year, 18 percent leading to medical assistance.

After examining this statistic, the article describes a further experiment conducted by the Los Angeles Eye Study (LALES) that shows the independent effects of central and peripheral vision impairments. After 3,200 participants and 8 years of study, this data correlated: the worse the visions, the higher the number of falls and injuries. Initially, it has been scientifically proven that senior citizens’ ability to see clearly in front of them is reduced due to age-related macular degeneration, but now the issue with peripheral vision is making its way into the laboratories.

The results found that people with central vision impairment were at 2.8 times higher risk for falls with injury than those with no vision impairment. And those with peripheral vision impairment were at 1.4 times higher the risk.  Researcher Rohit Varma, MD, MPH, suggests that both visions need to be treated and taken care of in order to help seniors decrease their risk of falling.

The American Academy of Opthalmology is accordingly the world’s largest association of eye physicians and surgeons with over 27,000 clients. One step at a time, they are looking for more ways to help improve the performance of eye sight and more.

Source:

http://www.homecareassistance.com/content/?c=86&p=961

Would you choose to live to 100?

February 8, 2010

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Healthy people need less sleep as they age; seniors should not be sleepy in the daytime.

February 8, 2010

-Dr. Kathy Johnson, PhD, CMC

Healthy People need less sleep as they age, and seniors should not be sleepy in daytime.  The study from the Sleep journal says that Senior citizens slept about 20 minutes less than middle-aged adults, who slept 23 minutes less than young adults.

Healthy senior citizens without sleep disorders can have the reduced need to sleep during the day. With sleeping 8 hours a day at night, sleep time decreased as they age. However, the number of awakenings after time spent in deep sleep increased with age.

Healthy aging appears to be related to reductions in the sleep duration and depth is correlated to daytime alertness.  Principle investigator Derk-Jan Dijk, a PhD and professor of sleep and physiology of the University in the U.K. said, “Our findings reaffirm the theory that it is not normal for older people to be sleepy during the daytime. “Whether you are young or old, if you are sleepy during the day you either don’t get enough sleep or you may suffer from a sleep disorder.”

A  study was conducted at the Clinical Research Centre of the University of Surrey and involved 110 healthy adults without sleep disorders or sleep complaints;
●  44 were young (20 to 30 years),
●  35 were middle-aged (40 to 55 years) and
●  31 were older adults (66 to 83 years).

This study shows that when asked to fall asleep in a comfortable position on their bed, young adults fell asleep in about 8.7 minutes, compared to 11.7 minutes for middle-aged adults and 14.2 minutes for older adults.

The author also noted that the cause of the age-related reductions in slow-wave sleep and sleep need still must be established. Related factors could include alterations in reproductive hormones or changes in the brain.

According to the authors, the study also has implications for the treatment of insomnia in older adults, who may be unaware of their reduced sleep need. Therefore, sleep restriction, which leads to increased homeostatic sleep pressure, may be a successful behavioral therapy for insomnia in healthy older adults.

Source:

http://www.homecareassistance.com/content/?c=86&p=966

Airfare too high? Many seniors are turning to cruises as a fun, affordable travel option!

February 1, 2010

-Dr. Kathy Johnson, PhD, CMC

Who says you are ever too old to travel and see the world?  In fact, senior citizens are looking for new and creative ways to travel to get the biggest bang for their buck.  With the limited amount of deals to be found on air travel, more senior citizens are turning to cruise lines, such as Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, Princess, and Carnival.  They found that with going on an all expenses included vacation they are saving money.

Though the economy is slow right now, the cruising industry has remained very competitive, making plentiful deals for their passengers.  The majority of cruise lines have an all-inclusive rate that offers lodging, meals and basis entertainment that represents a significant amount of savings compared to a trip that charges for each different aspect of the vacation separately.

In addition to saving money on an all inclusive vacation there are often discounts given to senior citizens 55 and older.  Another aspect of cruises that are ideal for seniors is the convenience of having everything pre-arranged; from one- stop shopping on board to the cruise line operators arrange everything in advance, even off- shore excursions.  It is a worry free vacation, rather than the typical do- it- yourself vacation.

Many senior citizens also prefer cruises because it allows them to see more places that your average air or car travels.  For example a cruise to Hawaii, may allow seniors to visit all five islands, which could prove to be logistically difficult otherwise.  By having lodging and dining located at the same convenient location every evening, cruises give seniors the excitement of going to multiple destinations but also the comforts of home.  Some of the best deals seniorjorunal.com found was Carnival Cruise Line’s Celebration of Summer promotion.  Carnival Cruise Line, for the entire month of July is offering a different promotion each day to different destinations around the world.

Royal Caribbean International is also offering some exciting summer deals to one or more of their 38 ports all over the world.  As well, Princess Cruise Line is offering amazing packages to Alaska.   If you want a luxury cruise Celebrity Cruise Line’s have some amazing itineraries in Europe.

So when planning your next summer vacation, save some money and a lot of hassle and book a cruise to your dream destination!

Source:

http://www.homecareassistance.com/content/?c=86&p=943

Vitamin C cures fast aging mice from Cancer, Diabetes, Heart Failure, and High Cholesterol.

February 1, 2010

-Dr. Kathy Johnson, PhD, CMC

In new research, published in the FASEB Journal, mice having abnormalities caused by Werner syndrome gene, also known as accelerated aging, including cancer, obesity, diabetes, heart failure and high cholesterol, can be cured through Vitamin C.

The issue of January 2010 reported the research conducted by a team of Canadian scientists showing that in a mouse model with Werner’s syndrome, vitamin C stops as well as reverses accelerated aging; however, the discovery may also be applicable to other progeroid syndromes.

In their 20s, people with Werner’s syndrome begin showing signs of accelerated aging and develop age-related diseases. Before the age of 50, they usually die.

The co-author of the study from the Centre de Recherche en Cancerologie in Quebec, Canada, Michel Lebel, Ph. D., stated that there is a noticeable indication in the study that in order to increase their lifespan, healthy individuals do not require a huge amount of vitamin C, particularly when they exercise and have a balanced diet.

He also mentions that an individual may profit from a diet with suitable amount of vitamin C when he/she has a mutation in the WRN gene or any gene affected by the WRN protein and therefore predisposes them to several age-related diseases. Both normal mice as well as mice with a mutation in the gene responsible for Werner’s syndrome (WRN gene) are treated with vitamin C in drinking water by scientists.

The mice with a mutated WRN gene were fat, diabetic and developed heart disease and cancer before treatment; however, they were as healthy as normal mice and lived a normal lifespan after treatment.

In WRN mice, vitamin C, in addition, enhanced the manner, in which the mice stored and burned fat, reduced tissue inflammation and oxidative stress. Nevertheless, vitamin C did not help the healthy mice.

The Editor-in-Chief of the FASEB Journal, Gerald Weissmann, M.D. affirmed that in the medicine cabinets and food, vitamin C has become one of the most misconstrued substances.

In addition, he stated that in this study and others similar to his, it is explained how and why this chemical can assist to shield some and indeed not all individuals from premature aging.

Source:

http://www.homecareassistance.com/content/?c=86&p=951

Uncovering the secrets to a longer, healthier life.

January 27, 2010

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http://www.homecareassistance.com/content/?c=86&p=941

Home Care Daily News (January 25th, 2010)

January 27, 2010

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Fractures that plague senior citizens can be reduced by taking calcium with Vitamin D.

January 25, 2010

-Dr. Kathy Johnson, PhD, CMC

Bone fractures for senior citizens are a major cause of disability, loss of independence and in some cases even death. However, a recent study done that included data from clinical studies conducted at UC Davies in Sacramento as part of the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI), found that the risks of bone fractures for elderly adults can be reduced by taking calcium with Vitamin D supplements on a daily basis. Their study consisted of nearly 70,000 senior citizen patients of any age and gender.

“What is important about this very large study is that goes a long way toward resolving conflicting evidence about the role of vitamin D, either alone or in combination with calcium, in reducing fractures,” said John Robbins, professor of internal medicine at UC Davis and a co-author of the journal article.

“Our WHI research in Sacramento included more than 1,000 healthy, postmenopausal women and concluded that taking calcium and vitamin D together helped them preserve bone health and prevent fractures. This latest analysis, because it incorporates so many more people, really confirms our earlier conclusions.”

Researchers at Copenhagen University in Denmark and an international team of colleagues, examined the results of seven trials around the world to asses the effectiveness of whether or not Vitamin D alone reduced fractures among people 70 years or older or if it was a combination of both Vitamin D and calcium together. The researchers could not identify any significant effects for people who only take vitamin D supplements. One of the several trials the researchers analyzed was Robbins’ WHI research. This was a 15 year, national program that addressed the most common causes of death disability and poor quality of life in postmenopausal women such as cardiovascular disease, cancer and osteoporosis.

There were two main objectives to those trails. The primary objective was to study the effect of calcium and vitamin D supplementation in preventing hip fractures. The secondary objective was to test the supplements on spine and other types of fractures, and colorectal cancer.

In older people osteoporosis or porous bone, a disease characterized by low bone mass and bone fragility, are often steamed from fractures. According to the National Osteoporosis Foundation, there are an estimated 10 million Americans that have osteoporosis and 80% of them are women. It has also been confirmed that 4 out of 10 women over the age of 50 years old will experience a fracture of the wrist, hip or spine in their lifetime. As well as osteoporosis- related fractures were responsible for an estimated $19 billion in health related costs.

“This study supports a growing consensus that combined calcium and vitamin D is more effective than vitamin D alone in reducing a variety of fractures,” said Robbins. “Interestingly, this combination of supplements benefits both women and men of all ages, which is not something we fully expected to find. We now need to investigate the best dosage, duration and optimal way for people to take it.”

Source:

http://www.homecareassistance.com/content/?c=86&p=935

Home Care Daily News (January 20th, 2009)

January 22, 2010

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http://www.homecareassistance.com/content/?c=86&p=930