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Wednesday, July 24, 2024

Science Scene

Eating nuts helps lower bad cholesterol

It turns out airplane snacks may actually benefit your health.

In a new study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, eating just 2.4 ounces of any kind of nuts helped lower total cholesterol and “bad” LDL cholesterol, and increased the ratio of total cholesterol to “good” HDL cholesterol.

Researchers took the results from 25 clinical trials with a total of 58 participants. Eating nuts decreased bad cholesterol by 10.2 milligrams per deciliter or about 7.4 percent and a decline of 10.9 milligrams of total cholesterol, about 5.1 percent.

The reason for the healthy benefits stem from the nuts’ rich supplies of unsaturated fats, which are known to lower cholesterol, said Dr. Joan Sabaté, the lead author of the study and professor of nutrition at Loma Linda University in California.

Source: nytimes.com

Pee the key to fight or flee

Researchers at the Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, Calif. have found evidence that the smell of a protein in urine makes mice fearful when it comes from cats and rats, a new study says.

Published in Cell, the study provides clues as to why some animals choose to flee in one instance and fight in another. Scientists suggest that animals have adapted a sensory communication system to interpret the smells of danger.

When mice smell a certain protein component, they will either fight or flee depending on which animal it came from. Mice that smell a predator’s urine will often flee from danger. However, when the protein comes from another mouse, the smell prompts aggression to other mice.

Source: sciencenews.org

Viewing the victims of sudden death could improve life of mourner

Viewing a family member’s dead body could be beneficial to the healing process, investigators said. In incidents where death came suddenly, such as suicide or car accidents, the majority of participants interviewed said they did not regret their decision to view the corpse, even when it was bruised or decomposing.

Those who regretted seeing the body said they were pressured by authorities to identify the body or were ill prepared for what it would look like. For the rest, viewing of the body drove home their loss, making it easier for them to move on in the long run.

Little research has been done on the mourning process of family members, though researchers hope the information will help cope with the large number of fatal accidents that occur each year.

Source: sciencenews.org



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