HEALTH NOTES: Pesticide risk in Mediterranean diet, scientists claim
Researchers have discovered a downside to the Mediterranean diet: more nasty pesticides.
Newcastle University scientists asked students to eat a Western diet for two weeks, then swap it for a Mediterranean diet – full of fruits, vegetables and grains.
Each participant took urine tests to measure traces of four common pesticides. The Med diet caused residue to increase by a fifth, while traces of weed killers called organophosphates rose five-fold.
Exposure to these has been linked to memory loss and other issues.
But those who ate organic products cut pesticide exposure by more than 90 per cent.
Researchers in Newcastle University have warned that the famed Mediterranean diet may not be as healthy as once thought because of the presence of organophosphates
Blood test boost for mums-to-be
A blood test could predict complicated births in older mothers.
Manchester University scientists tracked 1,000 pregnant women across six UK hospitals, between 2012 and 2014, and compared outcomes, along with blood test results at 28 and 36 weeks of pregnancy.
They found that mothers over 35 with low levels of a protein called placental growth factor were more likely to experience problems such as small babies, premature birth and babies needing neonatal care.
Manchester University scientists tracked 1,000 pregnant women across six UK hospitals, between 2012 and 2014, and compared outcomes, along with blood test results at 28 and 36 weeks of pregnancy
The protein level, measured via blood tests, could predict a complication with 74 per cent accuracy.
The figure is more commonly high in older mothers, compared to those in their 20s, which scientists say could be one reason why older mothers are at higher risk of complications.
Many millennials have taken on responsibility for their parents’ health, according to a new survey. Out of 2,500 respondents between the ages of 25 and 40, three-quarters said the Covid-19 pandemic has pushed them into taking their parents’ medical problems into their own hands.
Millennials said their parents had made ‘poor life choices’ that had put their health at ‘serious risk’, leaving their children with no option but to take the reins, according to the study by vitamin company Vitl.
For 42 per cent, that meant helping them access stop-smoking services. For others it was ensuring they ate healthily. But 15 per cent said they had developed a mental health problem as a result of the responsibility.
A third of young adults describe their mental health as ‘poor’, according to a poll of 4,500 Britons, confirming previous findings about the effect of the pandemic on young minds.
A quarter of 16-to-24-year-olds blame lockdown isolation for their suffering, while just under a fifth of the population as a whole say they have poor mental wellbeing.
Four in five of those polled said activities and spaces to talk would help. Paul Farmer, of mental health charity Mind, said: ‘Connections between people and places matter when it comes to mental health.’
A quarter of 16-to-24-year-olds blame lockdown isolation for their suffering, while just under a fifth of the population as a whole say they have poor mental wellbeing