Research News

Here you can find a selection of the latest research news stories and medical breakthroughs. Take a look below to learn more!

Consuming Added Sugar Could Increase Your Risk of Kidney Stones

A recent study highlights that added sugar consumption may be a risk factor for developing kidney stones.

Participants who received more than 25% of their total energy from added sugars had an 88% higher chance of developing kidney stones than those with less than 5% of their total energy from added sugars.

Added sugar can lead to high blood pressure, insulin resistance and obesity, which all increase the prevalence of kidney stone formation.

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What is the Best Type and Combo of Exercise to Lower Death Risk?

According to a new study, a balanced regimen of moderate physical activity (MPA) and vigorous physical activity (VPA), along with two muscle-strengthening (MSA) sessions a week, can reduce the risk of various forms of mortality.

The study also found even greater reductions in mortality risk by exceeding current physical activity guidelines.

With more than 300 minutes of MPA, greater than 0 to 75 minutes of VPA, and two or more MSA sessions per week, the researchers observed an approximately 50% lower mortality rate for all-cause and cancer mortality, along with a roughly three-fold lower mortality rate for CVD mortality.

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Can Using Aromatherapy Oils Every Night Help Improve Memory?

Being regularly exposed to multiple scents—or olfactory enrichment—has shown promise in enhancing cognitive abilities in older adults.

For the study, the researchers recruited 43 participants, aged 60–85 years, who were in good general health with healthy cognition. For six months, the participants were exposed to either a higher or lower concentration of essential oils nightly for two hours as they were going to sleep.

Compared to the control group, participants in the olfactory-enrichment group displayed a 226% improvement in their performance on the Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test—a word list recall test used to assess verbal learning and memory. Additionally, they observed improved functioning in the left uncinate fasciculus.

These findings suggest that olfactory enrichment may be a low-cost approach to reduce neurological impairment in older adults.


Social Isolation, Loneliness Linked to Increased Risk of All-Cause Mortality

A new study confirms an association between social isolation, loneliness, and mortality.
The large meta analysis found that being socially isolated was associated with a 26% increase in the risk of all-cause death compared to people who were not socially isolated.

The effect of loneliness was slightly less but still concerning with the chance of death for people experiencing prolonged loneliness being 14% higher than for those who were not lonely.

In addition, among people with cancer, social isolation and loneliness are also linked to a higher risk of death.

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Moderate to Heavy Drinking Linked to Increased Stroke Risk in Young Adults

The findings of a recent study show that moderate and heavy alcohol use is linked to a higher risk of stroke.

Whilst stroke mostly impacts those over 44 years of age, increasing numbers of younger adults are experiencing stroke. The World Stroke Organisation (WSO) estimates that around 8%  of the 13.7 million strokes each year occur in adults under 44 years of age.

In a recent study including participants between the ages of 20 and 39, those with 2 years of moderate to heavy drinking were at a 19% higher risk of stroke. Meanwhile, those with 3 years had a 22% increased risk, and those with 4 years had a 23% higher risk.

This study has led health experts to recommend that young adults reduce their alcohol consumption.

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IBS and Other Digestive Issues May be an Early Indicator of Parkinson’s Disease

Recently published research suggests certain gastrointestinal issues could be early warning signs of Parkinson’s disease.

The analysis suggests four gut conditions may be associated with a higher risk of later receiving a diagnosis of Parkinson’s.

Researchers found that gastroparesis, dysphagia, and constipation were associated with a more than double increased risk of developing Parkinson’s disease. IBS without diarrhoea was associated with a 17% higher risk.

The theory linking gut health to Parkinson’s became known as Braak’s hypothesis.

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