Mobile and wearable technologies are advancing at an alarming rate, with a special focus in consumer health. We have recently heard of the Apple watch becoming the first FDA-approved wearable device that can perform electrocardiograms.
We’ve all gone through this: you decide to take up running, cycling, join a gym or start a diet. You’re all hyped up with the idea, buy new sports gear, download the latest health app that tracks your time exercising, read about the latest diet fad, and start off towards your new you.
There is a strong correlation between depression and heart disease. Several studies have shown that those with depression have increased risk of arrhythmia, while individuals with heart disease are more likely to be depressed. So how can this vicious cycle be stopped? Well, recent studies have shown that exercise can be as effective as anti-depressant drugs, and cuts the risk of heart disease by half. This is especially relevant at mid- and advanced age, where the prevalence for these two conditions are higher.
There is an enormous amount of information and news regarding the risks of being overweight for your health, especially due to recent studies indicating that the prevalence has dramatically increased in the past 30 years.
A new report by the World Health Organization (WHO) has recently published a study regarding the prevalence of obesity in children around the globe (related post). One of the more remarkable results indicates that the highest rates in child obesity is ironically in the countries where one of the healthiest diets in the world is born: the Mediterranean.
The reason for this is mainly due to what is observed worldwide; the increasingly sedentary lifestyle, and the high amount of processed, high fat/sugar foods in the daily menus of the children. Our lifestyle has changed dramatically in recent years, and our children have suffered the consequences.
Fortunately, the intervention programs implemented in recent years seem to working. In this sense, a 2-7% decrease has been reported in Spain, Italy, Greece and Portugal. But rather than celebrate, we must work harder in lowering this prevalence, as it is still of the highest in the world. Although it can be a daunting task, we must make a special effort at home with our children, to increase their daily physical activity, and add more fruits, vegetables and healthier alternatives in their diet. We must do this, for the sake of their future health.
Product Development Manager / Digital Health Scientific Adviser
Reference: you can find the report here
A recently published study has shown that a slight reduction in daily caloric intake, approximately 15%, can have beneficial effects on one’s lifespan and health.
Two independent news reports, one from the US and one from the UK, published one day apart from each other, have recently caught my interest: the younger populations, including children and millennials/young adults, will have the highest obesity rates in recorded history.
The numbers are appalling. The incidence rate of obesity in children less than 5 years of age is at its highest, with 26% of them being overweight and 15% obese. Once a child is overweight, the majority remain that way throughout the rest of their lives. At 16-19 years of age, 40% are already obese. In the case of the millennials, it is estimated that 70% of them will be overweight before they are 40.
Excess weight has a terrible effect on their health and quality of life. Not only are they more prone to many health conditions such as type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and fatty liver, but also to around 13 types of cancer. And to be at risk of these diseases at such a young age only makes matters worse, as the probability increases as time goes by.
This is a matter of grave concern, and measures must be taken to stall, if not reverse, the incidence rate. It is still not too late, we must take action by increasing awareness, promote healthy eating habits and physical activity. We must do this, for the sake of the future of our children.
Jonathan Jones, PhD
Product Development Manager
How Communities with Higher Ratios of Obesity Increase Your Risk of Being Overweight/Obese
The numbers are frightening: around 40% of newly-diagnosed cancers are those associated with obesity. Excess weight contributes to increased risk of at least 13 types of cancers. Furthermore, the incidence rate of almost all overweight and obesity related cancers has increased in the last decade.