Health bits: Depression ‘contagious’

2013-04-20 14:32

City Press health reporter Zinhle Mapumulo’s pick of new health and lifestyle research.

» Depression ‘contagious’

Is depression contagious? Well, according to research conducted by scientists at the University of Notre Dame, it is.

The professor followed 206 first-year students who were paired up randomly. The findings showed that students who shared a room with someone who had depression were more likely to develop depression as well.

» Want to lower you blood pressure? Drink beetroot juice

New research suggests that drinking a glass of beetroot juice could lower one’s blood pressure by at least 7%.

The study was published in the American Heart Association journal Hypertension this week.

Beetroot is high in nitrate.

Researchers monitored the blood pressure of 250 people who were either given beetroot juice or water containing a low amount of nitrate for a day.

The results showed that those who drank beetroot juice had a much lower blood pressure than those who drank water.

» Aerobics can repair heavy drinkers’ brains

A study has found that a simple exercise like aerobics can repair a brain damaged by heavy drinking.

The researchers from the University of Colorado examined brains of 60 heavy drinkers who exercised regularly to find out whether exercising had any impact on the functionality of their brains.

They discovered that exercising does repair some of the brain damaged by alcohol abuse.

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