Posts for health

Lockdown mental fatigue rapidly reversed by social contact, study finds

Emerging from isolation has a profound effect on our cognitive functions. Koldunova Anna/Shutterstock Dr Christopher Hand, Glasgow Caledonian University; Greg Maciejewski, University of the West of Scotland, and Joanne Ingram, University of the West of Scotland Many of us are looking forward to a summer of relative freedom, with road-mapped […]

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Good news – steps to clear tobacco litter

It’s grim when you walk around to find cigarette ends flicked on the ground. A late friend of mine was a heavy smoker. Her local authority gave her a pouch type item to put her cigarette ends in and the local authority fined anyone they caught throwing tab ends on […]

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Half of all UK adults vaccinated

Half of all adults in the UK (of which there are over 52.7 million) have received their first dose of the (coronavirus) COVID-19 vaccine, the latest figures show. The UK health services vaccinated a total of 26.8 million people between 8 December and 19 March with first doses, while 2.1 […]

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Covid and dementia 2 leading causes of death in Feb

For those who wonder about the impact of Covid, it is worth a quick glance at the latest Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures for mortality rates in February. In February 2021, there were 55,489 deaths registered in England, 11,421 deaths (25.9%) more than the five-year average (2015 to 2019) […]

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Coronavirus is evolving but so are our antibodies

Antibodies (white) binding to a coronavirus (red and orange). Kateryna Kon/Shutterstock Sarah L Caddy, University of Cambridge and Meng Wang, University of Cambridge The emergence of “variants of concern” has raised questions about our long-term immunity to the coronavirus. Will the antibodies we make after being infected with or vaccinated […]

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How well does the AstraZeneca vaccine work? An expert reviews the current evidence

Sarah Pitt, University of Brighton When the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine was first authorised by the UK Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency, it was hailed as a milestone in turning the tide on the coronavirus. But in the time since, this highly efficacious vaccine has suffered a lot of reputational damage. […]

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Napping in the afternoon can improve memory and alertness – here’s why

Short and long naps both have benefits. Rawpixel.com/ Shutterstock John Axelsson, Karolinska Institutet and Tina Sundelin, Stockholm University Some people swear by an afternoon nap – whether it’s to catch up on lost sleep or to help them feel more alert for the afternoon ahead. Even Boris Johnson supposedly favours […]

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Your genetics influence how resilient you are to cold temperatures – new research

People with this gene variant shivered less and had a higher core body temperature when exposed to cold water. Dudarev Mikhail/ Shutterstock Victoria Wyckelsma, Karolinska Institutet and Peter John Houweling, Murdoch Children’s Research Institute Some people just aren’t bothered by the cold, no matter how low the temperature dips. And […]

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When men started to obsess over six-packs

The ideal male body assumed a new definition in the 19th century. Strongman Project, CC BY Conor Heffernan, The University of Texas at Austin College of Liberal Arts The cultural obsession with six-pack abdominals shows no signs of abating. And if research into male body image is to be believed, […]

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Five ways boredom could be changing your behaviour, for better or worse

Boredom can be good and bad. Shutterstock/fizkes Wijnand Van Tilburg, University of Essex Many of us have probably felt bored at some point in the past year. Restrictions on social gatherings, travel and plenty of other activities may have been necessary to control the pandemic, but have left lots of […]

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