Do Women’s Voices Really Allow Men to Detect Ovulation? No, Says New Study
Here’s one for the annals of “Are you serious?” I guess there’s been some research indicating men can detect when women are ovulating by a change in their voices. This “detection” was believed to be partially helpful in procreation. But a recent study refutes this position.
“Their results showed that the overall variation in women’s vocal quality throughout the whole cycle precludes unequivocal identification of the period with the highest conception risk. (1)”
Where I had to laugh, however, was this part of the Science Daily review.
“In an interesting further finding, the study found that women’s voice were harsher and more irregular during menstruation, providing scientific data to explain why female opera singers may be granted ‘grace days’ during menstruation.”
Harsher and more “irregular.” Ya, I guess that’s one way of putting it.
Overweight Older Women Have Less Leg Strength, Power
A new study from the University of New Hampshire finds that the leg strength and power of overweight older women is significantly less than that of normal-weight older women, increasing their risk for disability and loss of independence. With more Americans aging and becoming overweight or obese, the study, published recently in the Journal of Electromyography and Kinesiology, dispels the popular image of the bird-thin elder being at greatest risk of becoming disabled due to loss of muscle mass.
“Everything pointed to the fact that it was the extra fat that these people were carrying that was really limiting their mobility,” he says. “Being of a normal body weight lets you perform activities of daily living and live on your own longer. (2)”
The good news for older women AND men is their ability to gain strength and add muscle has been verified in numerous studies. Just because you are north of 50, 60 or even 70 years doesn’t mean you can’t lose fat and get stronger. You can!
Advice To Divorcees: Go Easy On Yourself
Divorce is tough, for just about everyone. But some people move through a breakup without overwhelming distress, even if they’re sad or worried about money, while others get stuck in the bad feelings and can’t seem to climb out. What accounts for the difference?
“Self-compassion, says an upcoming study in Psychological Science, a journal published by the Association for Psychological Science. Self-compassion — a combination of kindness toward oneself, recognition of common humanity, and the ability to let painful emotions pass — “can promote resilience and positive outcomes in the face of divorce,” says psychologist David A. Sbarra …(3)”
“The surprising part here is that when we look at a bunch of positive characteristics” — such as self-esteem, resistance to depression, optimism, or ease with relationships — “this one characteristic — self-compassion — uniquely predicts good outcomes.”
In my wellness-coaching practice I see the benefits of self-forgiveness and self-compassion everyday. I also see the fallout when these two traits need work.
People do better with weight loss and they do better at keeping the weight off when they are able to more quickly get through something difficult or upsetting without catastrophic self-berating. EVERYONE does better when what’s perceived as a failure is approached with a “fail forward and fail fast” mindset. Self-compassion and the ability to let painful emotions pass aren’t just keys to getting through a divorce. They’re keys for living a happy, thriving lifestyle.
For Men, Children Protect the Heart
Children are not only cute, they also may help their fathers stave off cardiovascular disease, and the more kids the better, researchers found.
Married men with no children had a 17% increased risk of dying from cardiovascular causes compared with married men who had children, reported Michael L. Eisenberg, MD, from Stanford University School of Medicine in Stanford, Calif., and colleagues (4).
Brain Takes Multiple Hits from Low B12 Levels
Low levels of vitamin B12 may contribute to cognitive problems for older adults in more than one way, according to a cross-sectional study (5).
“Insufficient vitamin B12 is very common in older people,” she explained. “The older we get we have a decreased ability to absorb vitamin B12 from our diet. … Medications can also impair absorption.”
But middle age adults may be another important population for screening and possible supplementation, Morris suggested.
Although her group’s observational study couldn’t say whether boosting B12 would prevent or reverse cognitive effects, a prior randomized trial demonstrated that high-dose B complex supplements could slow down brain atrophy in older adults.
In that study, dubbed VITACOG, supplements did a better job of holding cognitive declines at bay than placebo among those with high homocysteine levels.
“So at least from this one clinical trial it appears that [supplementation] may have some benefit,” Morris argued.
I always recommend a complete vitamin and mineral supplement. There is no good reason to mega-dose with vitamin B-12 but there are really good reasons to supplement your food-based nutrition with one that covers the dietary reference intakes (DRI) for all the major vitamins and minerals.
A Reminder: Fish Oil Supplementation Recommended For Most
We consume too many omega-6 fatty acids and too few omega-3 fatty acids. This imbalance impacts overall inflammation, health and our ability to maximize fat loss around the abdomen.
Omega-3 fatty acids from fish may reduce cardiac deaths, inflammatory disease, including rheumatoid arthritis and ulcerative colitis, and promote brain development and mental function (6).
Fish oil supplementation can help rebalance the ratio of omega-3 to omega-6 fats. If you aren’t consuming salmon (the most commonly-eaten omega-3 rich animal source) 2-3 times per week then a dietary supplement of molecularly distilled (impurities removed), enteric-coated (no fish burp) fish oil is strongly suggested everyday.
Obesity Rates Correlate to Increased Consumption of Corn-Based Products
It is estimated that, worldwide, approximately 937 million adults are overweight and 396 million are obese. This rising trend continues both globally and in the United States, which claims the largest population of overweight and obese adults (7).
“Taken together, our results reveal a novel association of corn product consumption with rising trends of obesity, which may be linked to the increased ubiquity of transgenic corn in the diet. These trends data findings warrant further investigation and confirmation through laboratory testing.”
At this point I want to at least put your antennas up to the hyphened phrase “genetically-modified” (GM). The authors in this study aren’t the only researchers in recent years to begin pointing fingers at GM plants we regularly consume. Corn, soybeans and wheat all have GM versions we’ve been consuming for more than a decade. You are now seeing NON GMO on packaging.
According to the “Non-GMO Project”
“GMOs (or ‘genetically modified organisms’) are organisms that have been created through the gene-splicing techniques of biotechnology (also called genetic engineering, or GE). This relatively new science allows DNA from one species to be injected into another species in a laboratory, creating combinations of plant, animal, bacteria, and viral genes that do not occur in nature or through traditional crossbreeding methods (8).”
For now, what am I recommending regarding GM plant ingestion? Reduce or eliminate. Increase fresh or frozen vegetable consumption. Include one fresh or frozen serving of fruit everyday.
We are being used as test subjects for the GM plants (think soybeans and grains). Research is coming out monthly on this subject and at the worst these “foods” ARE hurting us and our ability to get healthy and lean and at best they are neutral for our health and ability to get lean.
6. Canadian Medical Association Fish Oil Fact Sheet
7. Survey of American food trends and the growing obesity epidemic
Greetings David, Dr. Maxwell who is an Interventional Cardiology was talking with my wife who is the CHF Coordinator at CGH. He said that a new study found that DHEA in Omega 3 fish oil has a high rate of prostate cancer linked to it. I will to find out what magazine and issue he was qouting. Have a great day.
Hi Russ – this is the study you are referring to Am J Epidemiol. 2011;173(12):1429–1439. The authors were surprised at their findings.
“EPA and DHA, found in fatty fish and in fish oil supplements, are hypothesized to reduce cancer risk through their antiinflammatory and immunomodulatory properties.” In another place in their research report they state “There were no associations of low-grade prostate cancer with any fatty acid measure.” So far so good – all makes sense.
And then they got a surprise.
The authors duly note limitations of their study and possible confounding variables for their unexpected results. I’ve also yet to meet a real science-minded individual who looks at one study and says “Ureka! This is the end-all be-all definitive guide to this subject!” However, this study was large and apparently very well done. What does it really mean? Well it’d be improper to say that omega-3 fats increase prostate-cancer risk. While the surprising results are not good the increased risk was specifically for high-grade prostate cancer, not low-grade prostate cancer.
I think the authors conclude with the best guidance.