Study Finds ‘Good’ Cholesterol May Be Misnomer For Fatty Substance Just Along For The Ride
For years, it was thought that "good" cholesterol cleansed the bloodstream of "bad" cholesterol and scrubbed the inner walls of blood vessels, but new data suggest that was giving it too much credit. Meanwhile, despite evidence to the contrary, Americans still say obese people are just lacking the willpower to lose weight.
Raising 'Good' Cholesterol Doesn't Reduce Heart Attack Risk
“Good” cholesterol might be in for a name change. Raising HDL, widely known as good cholesterol, for years has been thought to protect against heart attack and stroke. But a big new study published Monday found little evidence it does. The finding upends the advice doctors have been giving millions of patients — and helps explain why the drug industry has failed time and again, despite billions in investment, to develop a drug that cuts deaths from heart disease by boosting HDL levels. (Garde, 10/31)
The New York Times:
Americans Blame Obesity On Willpower, Despite Evidence It’s Genetic
Americans believe that obesity is the biggest health threat in the nation today — bigger even than cancer. But though scientific research shows that diet and exercise are insufficient solutions, a large majority say fat people should be able to summon the willpower to lose weight on their own. (Kolata, 11/1)
And, in other public health news —
The New York Times:
Medical Charities Once Advised On Coping With A Disease. Now They Try To Cure It.
Like every mother who has a sick child, Katie Clapp remembers with painful clarity the moment 24 years ago when her doctor called to say that her young son, Andy, had Fragile X, an inherited disease that causes intellectual disability. Ms. Clapp did not give up on Andy, and within two years she helped establish a foundation that has spent decades and millions of dollars on research for a cure. At the time, that kind of response was rare. (Harris, 10/31)
The Washington Post:
Feel Ashamed? Good For You!
In the past, many psychologists theorized that shame was maladaptive and served no useful function. Earlier this year, however, anthropologists from California, Israel and the Netherlands put a positive spin on the much-maligned emotion in a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Shame is a product of self-critique — we cannot feel shame without feeling guilty — and a consciousness of how others perceive our transgressions. For this reason, the anthropologists said, shame developed as a way of maintaining social order. (Ellis Nutt, 10/31)
Los Angeles Times:
A Neuropsychiatrist Explains Why We Crave Fear
Each Halloween, we are reminded that we are a nation divided. Some of us think going to an amusement park and being chased by people dressed as zombies is a really fun way to spend a Saturday night. Others think that sounds like torture. So why do some people love to be scared, while others find it so frightening? (Netburn, 10/31)
Another Reason To Put Down Your Phone — Especially When You’re Outside
In addition to damage caused by direct and indirect sun, UV reflectance poses yet another serious threat to our skin—and most people are unaware of it. UV exposure is increased when rays are reflected off water, sand and even concrete (runners, take note). Any shiny surface can reflect UV rays, and this study in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology identifies yet another source of UV reflectance: Your cell phone. (Leslie Baumann, 10/31)