Study results have shown that taking a daily dose of the pine bark extract pycnogenol may help to treat or prevent metabolic syndrome, a condition that is linked to type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Researchers administered 150 milligrams per day of the extract to 64 subjects, aged 45 to 55 years, who had exhibited all five risk factors for metabolic syndrome for six months. Another group of 66 matched participants served as controls.
The researchers found that supplementation with the pine bark extract was correlated with reductions in waist circumference, triglycerides, fasting blood glucose and blood pressure and an increase in HDL cholesterol, a.k.a. the good cholesterol. They concluded that the extract may help improve health-risk factors in people with metabolic syndrome.
Belcaro, G., et al. (2013). Pycnogenol® supplementation improves health risk factors in subjects with metabolic syndrome. Phytother Res. Published online January 28.
Sleep Problems Linked to Prostate Cancer
A study of 2,102 men suggests that those who suffer from sleep problems have a significantly increased risk of developing prostate cancer. Lara G. Sigurdardóttir, M.D., of the University of Iceland in Reykjavik, and colleagues questioned participants regarding whether they took medications to help sleep, had trouble falling asleep, woke up during the night and had difficulty going back to sleep or woke up early in the morning and had difficulty going back to sleep. At the start of the study 8.7 percent of the participants reported severe sleep problems and 5.7 percent reported very severe problems. None of the participants had prostate cancer. The researchers followed the participants for five years, during which time 6.4 percent of the subjects were diagnosed with prostate cancer. Analysis revealed that the risk for prostate cancer increased proportionately with the severity of reported problems falling and staying asleep. The men with the most severe sleep problems were more than twice as likely to have developed prostate cancer as the men who reported no sleep problems. Furthermore, the association between advanced prostate cancer and sleep problems was even stronger, with men who reported “very severe” sleep problems having more than a threefold increased risk of advanced prostate cancer.
“Sleep problems are very common in modern society and can have adverse health consequences,” said Dr Sigurdardóttir. “If our results are confirmed with further studies, sleep may become a potential target for intervention to reduce the risk for prostate cancer.”
Sigurdardòttir, L.G., et al. (2013). Sleep disruption among older men and risk of prostate cancer. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 22(5):872-879.
—Dr. Bob Goldman
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Dr. Robert M. Goldman MD, PhD, DO, FAASP has spearheaded the development of numerous international medical organizations and corporations. Dr. Goldman has served as a Senior Fellow at the Lincoln Filene Center, Tufts University; as an Affiliate at the Philosophy of Education Research Center, Graduate School of Education, Harvard University, He is Clinical Consultant, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Korea Medical University; and Professor, Department of Internal Medicine at the University of Central America Health Sciences, Department of Internal Medicine. Dr. Goldman holds the positions of Visiting Professor, Udayana University School of Medicine, Indonesia; Visiting Professor, Huazhong University of Science & Technology Tong Ji Medical School, China; Visiting Professor, The Wuhan Institute of Science & Technology, China; Visiting Professor at Hainan Medical College, China; and Visiting Professor, School of Anti-Aging, Aesthetics and Regenerative Medicine, UCSI University, Malaysia. Dr. Goldman is a Fellow of the American Academy of Sports Physicians and a Board Diplomat in Sports Medicine and Board Certified in Anti-Aging Medicine. Dr. Goldman is a Fellow of the American Academy of Sports Physicians and a Board Diplomat in Sports Medicine and Board Certified in Anti-Aging Medicine. He has overseen cooperative research agreement development programs in conjunction with such prominent institutions as the American National Red Cross, the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the Department of Defense, and the FDA’s Center for Devices & Radiological Health.
Dr Goldman was awarded the 2012 LifeTime Achievement Award in Medicine &Science. Dr. Goldman is the recipient of the ‘Gold Medal for Science, the Grand Prize for Medicine, the Humanitarian Award, and the Business Development Award. He received honors from Minister of Sports and government Health officials of numerous nations. In 2001, Excellency Juan Antonio Samaranch awarded Dr. Goldman the International Olympic Committee Tribute Diploma for contributions to the development of sport & Olympism.
In addition, Dr. Goldman is a black belt in karate, Chinese weapons expert, and world champion athlete with over 20 world strength records, he has been listed in the Guinness Book of World Records. Some of his past performance records include 13,500 consecutive situps and 321 consecutive handstand pushups. Dr. Goldman was an All-College athlete in four sports, a three time winner of the John F. Kennedy (JFK) Physical Fitness Award, was voted Athlete of the Year, was the recipient of the Champions Award, and was inducted into the World Hall of Fame of Physical Fitness. Dr. Goldman was awarded the Healthy American Fitness Leader Award from the President’s Council on Physical Fitness & Sports and U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Dr. Goldman is Chairman of the International Medical Commission overseeing sports medicine committees in over 184 nations. He has served as a Special Advisor to the President’s Council on Physical Fitness & Sports. He is founder and international President Emeritis of the National Academy of Sports Medicine and the cofounder and Chairman of the American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine (A4M). Dr. Goldman visits an average of 20 countries annually to promote brain research and sports medicine programs.