Latest News & Research: 12 April 2018

THIS WEEK: If you’re happy and you know it hit the gym; Muscling in on oxygen use; Could coffee protect against heart disease? + MORE

You heart coffee – does it heart you?

Ahhhh, coffee. Good? Bad? Neutral? A thousand studies have provided differing opinions, although many seem to place it in the positive camp provided it’s consumed in moderation.

A new Brasilian study, however, has found that drinking at least three cups a day may help to fight heart disease by reducing the build-up of plaque in the arteries (atherosclerosis) which can restrict blood flow.

Researchers from the University of São studies the coffee consumption habits of over 4,400 middle-aged individuals and also gave them CT scans to gauge their artery health. The results showed that those who drank less than three cups of coffee daily had greater incidence of coronary calcification. It was noted, however, that smokers or those who had ever smoked, did not enjoy this protective effect of coffee.

Meanwhile, in California, a judge has ruled that coffee companies must place cancer warnings on their products because the roasting process produces a very small amount of acrylamide, a known carcinogen. Research hasn’t found strong evidence that consumption of coffee could cause cancer, but the burden of proof was placed on the coffee industry to prove that the tiny amount of acrylamide in coffee posed no significant risk – something that the currently available research did not enable them to do.

If you’re happy and you know it hit the gym

Exercise has been frequently linked to reduced depression, but a new review aimed to find out whether it actually increased happiness and positive feeling.

Reviewing 23 studies into the relationship between physical activity and happiness, the team from the University of Michigan found that the majority showed a positive correlation between happiness and exercise.

Lead study author, associate professor in kinesiology Weiyun Chen, said; ‘Our findings suggest the physical activity frequency and volume are essential factors in the relationship between physical activity and happiness. More importantly, even a small change of physical activity makes a difference in happiness.’

Muscling in on oxygen use

Swedish researchers have found the way in which muscles consume oxygen is determined by an enzyme called FIH.

Individuals with lower levels of the enzyme require a greater volume of oxygen when working out, making the ability to produce greater volumes of interest.

Principle investigator Professor Randall Johnson at the Department of Cell and Molecular Biology, Karolinska Institutet, said; ‘We've discovered that the muscles regulate oxygen consumption in a very precise way using the oxygen-sensitive enzyme FIH. The enzyme makes sure that the muscles can use a more effective oxygen-based metabolism for as long as possible and then promotes a very quick transition to anaerobic metabolism.’

The researchers expressed the view that the findings could be useful in potentially manipulating metabolism in a way that could help people with diabetes and obesity.

Run2Cure event perfect training goal for every level

Looking for a good training goal and team bonding experience for clients or members? Registrations are open for this year’s Run2Cure Neuroblastoma fun run, which will raise funds to fight the leading cause of cancer deaths in children under five.

Taking place on Sunday 3 June in Sydney’s picturesque Domain and Royal Botanic Gardens, the event features the 1km walk, the new 1km Junior Dash, as well as 3km, 5km and 10km timed distances.

Neuroblastoma Australia national charity Principal Lucy Jones said ‘This family friendly event is unique in that its focus is on young children – such as the Little Heroes Walk for under-fives – who represent the profile of the disease.’

Run2Cure will feature a large range of children’s activities, from 8.30 am till 1pm, including a petting zoo, rock climbing wall, jumping castle, mini soccer, obstacle course, cricket, face painting and entertainment from children’s performer Jay Laga’aia.

Click HERE to find out more and to register your team of clients, colleagues, family and friends.