Maternal obesity speeds up offspring aging, increases likelihood of diabetes and heart disease

It has long been known that obesity impairs our metabolism and predisposes to diabetes and heart disease. New research published today in The Journal of Physiology has shown that the effects of maternal obesity even pass across generations to offspring, accelerating the rate of aging of metabolic problems that occur in normal life.

Researchers at the Salvador Zubiran National Institute of Medical Sciences and Nutrition, in Mexico City and University of Wyoming at Laramie, studied offspring of obese rat mothers. They observed the offspring throughout their lives (puberty, early adult life, late adult life and early aging) to determine the rate at which they aged. Offspring of obese mothers had more body fat and showed early prediabetic signs such as an early rise in insulin resistance, increasing susceptibility to diabetes.

Offspring of the obese mothers also showed impaired function of their mitochondria, the power stations of cells that generate the energy cells need to function properly. These changes make it more likely that organisms will develop heart disease. Interestingly, some of the unwanted outcomes resulting from maternal obesity were different in males and female offspring. The reason for this is not clear, but it is thought to be hormonal in nature.

Encouragingly, exercise by the offspring improves many of the poor offspring outcomes that result from maternal obesity. These new findings add to the accumulating evidence for the influence of conditions in the womb and early life, on the physiology of the offspring, which thus impacts their susceptibility for diseases and the rate at which they age.

Elena Zambrano, senior author on the study, commented on the research saying:

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The science Of Breaking Bad: Would you know if meth was cooked inside your house?

The highly anticipated Breaking Bad movie El Camino story line focusing on drug production is more relevant than ever—with contamination of houses from methamphetamine cooking or smoking an increasing public health problem around the world.

Researchers from Flinders University—Dr. Jackie Wright, Associate Professor Stewart Walker and Dr. Kirstin Ross—have analysed the contamination levels in everyday household items from a home suspected to have previously been used for cooking methamphetamine, to determine whether surface wipe samples can adequately establish contamination levels and define the health risks.

Published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, Environmental Health experts explain while sampling commonly focuses on the collection of surface wipes, it’s difficult to understand the risk to inhabitants because those samples don’t indicate contamination levels inside objects, rather than just analysing surfaces.

“Our results demonstrate that methamphetamine has continued to mobilise after manufacture when the property was under new ownership for a period exceeding five years. This suggests that the methamphetamine is not breaking down or being removed and is constantly transferred from contaminated to non-contaminated objects,” says Dr. Ross

“The house was suspected to be a premises used to cook methamphetamine, it was then sold, lived in for several years by the new owners and then left unattended.”

“Although the time since the cooking had taken place was significant, the levels of contamination were extremely high in both household items that were part of the house when cooking was taking place (blinds, carpets, walls, etc.) and also in articles brought to the house post-cooking (rugs, toys, beds, etc.).”

The results raise questions about whether current surface detection methods allow people living inside a former meth house to understand the extent of contamination that’s present, not only on surfaces but also within building materials and items they’re exposed to on a daily basis.

“The most significant mass of methamphetamine was reported to be within the blinds. These are plastic blinds that were present when manufacture was suspected to have been undertaken. This is consistent with observations from other properties where higher levels of methamphetamine are present in materials such as PVC, polyurethane and stained and varnished timbers.”

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Bowel cancer symptoms: One major often misdiagnosed symptom that signals the condition

Bowel cancer is a general term for cancer in the large bowel and it is estimated that one in 15 men and one in 18 women will be diagnosed with bowel cancer during their lifetime. Bowel Cancer UK said: “Bowel cancer is now the second biggest cancer killer in the UK claiming more than 16,000 lives a year, that’s over 44 people every day. Every 15 minutes in the UK someone is diagnosed with bowel cancer. That’s almost 42,000 people every year and every 30 minutes, someone dies from bowel cancer.” Spotting the signs and symptoms early is crucial when it comes to cancer and experiencing anal bleeding is a major waring sign of bowel cancer. said on their website: “The symptom that most often prompted people to see their doctor was rectal bleeding which could be slight or occasional or heavy and persistent.

“Many people are often misdiagnosed with piles (haemorrhoids) or irritable bowel syndrome.

“Some people were treated for constipation or diarrhoea for as long as 15 moths before further investigations were pursued.

“Sometimes delayed diagnosis was unavoidable, however, many people felt that delays had occurred because their GP had not acknowledged the persistence or severity of their symptoms.”

Symptoms of bowel cancer include:

  • Blood in the stools
  • A persistent change in bowel habit
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Unexplained tiredness
  • Anaemia
  • Pain in the stomach
  • Pain, discomfort or bloating after eating
  • Feeling like the bowels have not emptied properly

These symptoms are not always related to bowel cancer and could be signs of other, less serious illnesses which makes it difficult to diagnose.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has produced guidelines which help GP’s make decisions about when to refer people to specialists when they present with symptoms that could be caused by cancer.

In a new study cancer survival rates in the UK were found to be lagging behind other high-income nations with the UK placing near the bottom of the league table, including dead last for stomach, colon, rectum, pancreas and lung cancer.

Researchers compared death rates from seven different forms of cancer, including lung, ovary and colon, between a handful of nations and noted the UK is lagging behind despite the 20 years of progress.

The study, based on data from nearly four million cancer cases spanning the entire 20 years, was published in the medical journal, Lancet Oncology. Australia, Norway, Canada, Denmark, and Ireland were the leading nations for five-year cancer survival rates.

Sara Hiom, Cancer Research UK’s director of early diagnosis, said: “While we’re on the right track, the numbers how we can certainly do better.

The advice consistently offered by patients to others experiencing possible symptoms of bowel cancer was to seek immediate medical attention, to trust their instincts and to insist on further investigation

We will not see the necessary improvements in diagnosis and access to treatment unless we have enough of the right staff across our NHS.

Cancer Research UK has been calling for staff shortages to be addressed because, quite simply, it will give people a better chance of surviving their cancer.”

The NHS hit back at the study, saying survival rates have never been higher.

If you suspect you may have any of the symptoms, it’s imperative to speak with your GP about the possible causes or treatment. added: “The advice consistently offered by patients to others experiencing possible symptoms of bowel cancer was to seek immediate medical attention, to trust their instincts and to insist on further investigation if the problem persists and they still feel that something is wrong.”

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