Here’s your daily dose of the latest discoveries from journals, research institutions, and news outlets from around the world.
Every day, an estimated 6,800 new peer-reviewed academic articles are published. That’s a whole lot of science to wade through—but don’t fret. We’ll do the legwork for you, each and every morning. Here’s your daily dose of the latest discoveries from journals, research institutions, and news outlets from around the world.
Choose Processed Foods Wisely
Processed food equals junk food, right? Not so fast, says the Washington Post. Not all processed foods are bad—it all depends on what we do to them, they report. For instance, processes like freezing, fermenting, or sprouting actually make them equally or even more nutritious. Just limit ultra-processed foods that are made with enriched flour, sugar, and high fructose corn syrup.
Turn Up the Music
Listening to your favorite song affects your brain like sex and drugs do, researchers from McGill University discovered. The scientists used a drug called naltrexone to block the brain’s opioid system—which is vital to experiencing pleasure from sex, drugs, and delicious food—and then had participants listen to music, including their favorite songs. Afterwards, the music no longer gave them pleasure. One subject even said, “It sounds pretty, but it's not doing anything for me,” according to the press release.
Look At Cancer Survival Statistics
New cancer drugs may not be the medical boon you may think, Kaiser Health News via USA Today reports. According to a new study, the 72 cancer therapies that received approval from 2002 to 2014 only gave patients an extra 2.1 months of life compared to older drugs. What’s more, two-thirds of the drugs approved over the past two years don’t have any evidence that they improve survival at all, the article reports.
Study the Heart
Researchers from York University have developed a 3D heart where all three cell types—cardiac muscle cells, connective tissue cells, and vascular cells—all beat in synchrony. That’s huge, since it can allow for better and earlier testing of heart drugs, potentially eliminating harmful meds sooner, the researchers believe.
Test For Parkinson’s
A simple blood test may help diagnose Parkinson’s earlier—and it’s just as accurate as a spinal fluid test, according to a study in the journal Neurology. The blood test can also differentiate Parkinson’s disease from other similar conditions, which is important in developing a treatment plan.