For decades, there’s been talk about whether there is a best time of year to have a baby. Now, researchers have determined that there is in fact a relationship between the month of conception and a newborn’s health.
Sorry, winter babies. The study, conducted by a team of Princeton University researchers, found that the unhealthiest babies were conceived in May and thus born in February. They were 10 percent more likely to to be premature and underweight.
You might already know that men’s testosterone levels taper off throughout the day as their bodies gradually consume the hormone. And no mid-afternoon caffeine fix will bring back the energy associated with the higher testosterone levels that are produced while we catch some Zs. But new research suggests there may be a natural way to keep those levels up throughout the day and ultimately lead to a highly efficient afternoon workout.
Recently, scientists in the UK conducted a study with 18 rugby players and found that those who bench-pressed or squatted a few sets in the early morning outperformed their peers who hit the snooze button rather than the gym. The morning lifters also proved to have higher levels of testosterone as the day wore on. Those who were assigned to a morning sprint session also produced good performance results during their afternoon workout, but not as significant as those who strength-trained.
Sixteen local chefs and mixologists kicked off the American Cancer Society’s Fit for Hope DC Challenge Monday afternoon at a weigh-in at Graffiato.
“There are two really great parts to it, the first one being that it’s amazing to have an opportunity to support [the society] through the restaurants,” said Ripple executive chef Marjorie Meek-Bradley. “Second, clearly every chef could be in a little better shape.”
Can nature produce healing effects? That’s a question the Green Road Project hopes to answer with its proposed outdoor space for wounded warriors on the campus of Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.
Today the Institute for Integrative Health (TIHH) was awarded a $1 million grant by the TKF Foundation for its proposal to promote healing among veterans by creating a two-acre green space adjacent to the Walter Reed campus. The hope is that once the space is created, researchers will be able to study veterans’ physiological, biological, and psychological responses to being on the Green Road.
Fairfax County Public Schools are currently at the heart of a national debate over whether to delay high school start times to 8 AM or later in an effort to allow students to get more sleep and therefore improve school performances. The school district has charged Children’s National Division of Sleep Medicine with the task of developing a plan to accomplish the proposal.
Research shows circadian rhythms, which govern sleep and weight patterns, shift dramatically with the onset of puberty, explains Dr. Judith Owens, director of sleep medicine at Children’s National Medical Center. Adolescents’ bodies aren’t programmed to go to sleep until after 11 PM, but many students now have a 6 AM wakeup call. Surveys conducted in the county found that two-thirds of 8th-, 10th-, and 12th-grade students get seven hours or less of sleep on weeknights, compared with the recommended 9 to 9.25 hours recommended per night.
“The science is the basis for the rationale of delaying the start time,” says Owens. “It’s really irrefutable.”
Forget pancakes and waffles—Virginia governor Bob McDonnell and his wife Maureen would rather down energy drinks for breakfast.
That’s according to a Washington Post article published Monday that reported the McDonnells use state and taxpayers’ money to purchase energy drinks, including Boost and 5-Hour Energy shots. Although the state pushed back, the Post reports that the governor’s chief of staff Martin Kent specifically overruled the audit on the energy drinks, arguing that since the governor and his wife have them for breakfast every day, they should be covered by the state—“just like breakfast is covered for EVERY Governor and First Lady,” he wrote.
Here’s a message for the next generation of doctors:
Dear future med school student:
Quit while you’re ahead.
Sound harsh? Unfortunately, it’s not an exaggeration, according to a new survey. Of the 3,456 physicians consulted, 42 percent reported being dissatisfied with their job for a number of reasons, including low salaries, burnout, and decreasing autonomy.
Come summer, there’s nothing more relaxing than cracking open a good book on the beach. If you’re more a fan of Born to Run than 50 Shades of Grey, we’ve got you covered with these eight must-read health and fitness books.
1) Run or Die by Kilian Jornet
If you’re a fan of the extremes, you’ll want to read Kilian Jornet’s autobiography. Deemed the “most dominating endurance athlete of his generation” by the New York Times, Jornet holds the speed record for running up and down Mount Kilimanjaro—and he’s only 26.
2) Gulp by Mary Roach
With Gulp, Roach explores the alimentary canal—the tube that connects our mouths and rears—in her typical humorous fashion. With a tinge of ick, a good dose of laughs, and a whole lot of research, this book answers questions about our digestive system that most of us are too scared to ask.
In a world where raw and organic food have become all the rage, it’s easy to see why the juicing trend has exploded into an multimillion-dollar industry.
In Washington alone, several raw juice bars have quickly popped onto the scene, the first being Puree Juice Bar in Bethesda, quickly followed by Khepra’s Raw Food and Juice Bar on H Street. Sweetgreen offers its line of Sweetpress juices, and a number of small cafes offer their own versions of cold-pressed juices.
But while juice diets appeal to a growing number of consumers, plenty of doubters remain—those who can’t fathom drinking only juice for multiple days to rid the body of toxins. I myself was one of them; as I witnessed friends purchase expensive at-home juicers and mounds of organic produce, my aversion to juice cleanses only continued to grow.
Last week marked the unofficial start of Washington’s humid summer—as evidenced by our T-shirts soaked through with sweat by 7 AM. So what’s a runner to do? Because getting up by 4 AM to avoid a running meltdown does not sound appealing.
First things first, hydrate.
It won’t do you much good to hydrate in the middle of your run if you haven’t had a glass of water all day. The American College of Sports Medicine recommends drinking 16 to 20 ounces of fluid at least two or three hours before running. Then continue to drink periodically during the run.
To avoid cramping and to replenish electrolyte loss, local running coaches Julie Sapper and Lisa Reichmann often take some salt tabs—they recommend Enduralytes—or drink V8.
However, be careful that you don’t over-hydrate, they warn. If your stomach is sloshing while you run, wait a bit before drinking again.