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To Break the Sugar Habit, Dial Down the Blue Light

By Matthew Kadey, MS, RD | October 16, 2019 |

Being glued to your smartphone at night may not be so smart if you’re trying to stick to a healthy diet. In research presented at the 2019 conference of the Society for the Study of Ingestive Behavior, in the Netherlands, rats exposed at night to just 1 hour of blue light—the same type of light emitted by many digital devices like smartphones—consumed more sugar afterward than when they were not exposed to blue light at night.

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Posture and Food Tasting

By Matthew Kadey, MS, RD | October 16, 2019 |

Often we are told to rise up from our chairs to help offset the health woes associated with sitting too much. But if we want to glean more joy from a meal, says a study in the Journal of Consumer Research, then we’re better off taking a seat.

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Fussy Eaters Are Poor Eaters

By Matthew Kadey, MS, RD | October 16, 2019 |

Variety is the spice of life, and when it comes to what we eat, it may also extend our life. In a study co-authored by researchers from the University of Helsinki’s Finnish National Institute for Health and Welfare and the University of Tartu in Estonia, individuals who exhibited signs of food neophobia—a reluctance to try unfamiliar foods—had lower-quality diets overall and were at greater risk for certain health conditions, in?¡cluding type 2 diabetes.

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Motivational Music and Interval Training

By Shirley Archer, JD, MA | October 15, 2019 |

Get your high-energy playlists ready. Sedentary male and female adult participants worked harder and enjoyed cycling sprint intervals more when listening to motivational music with a tempo of 135–140 beats per minute as opposed to no music or an informational podcast, researchers reported in Psychology of Sport & Exercise (2019; 45 [101547]).

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November 2019 Question of the Month: Supporting the Next Generation

By IDEA Authors | October 15, 2019 |

What are you or your facility doing to support the next generation of fitness enthusiasts? Are you offering any kids’ physical activity programs at schools or other off-site community locations? Are you providing programs free to local youth—or, if fee-based, what are you offering and how are you reaching potential clients? Please share your success stories.
We want to hear from you! Email executive editor Joy Keller, [email protected]

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Fitness Predicts Longevity After 70

By Shirley Archer, JD, MA | October 15, 2019 |

Most adults over age 70 have multiple risk factors, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol and/or diabetes, but experts note that knowing the total number of risk factors is not helpful for predicting future health. By contrast, knowing how fit a person is can be predictive, according to a study presented at the American College of Cardiology’s 68th Annual Scientific Session in March 2019.

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Rethinking Training to Exhaustion

By Shirley Archer, JD, MA | October 15, 2019 |

It’s common for athletes, musicians and other professionals to train repetitively to fatigue in seeking to improve their performance. When it comes to mastering a motor skill, however, new research shows that intensive repetition to the that subjects who had trained to fatigue experienced detrimental changes in motor skill learning, but not in performance of mentally demanding tasks.

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Exercise and Jet Lag

By Shirley Archer, JD, MA | October 15, 2019 |

Maybe you’re familiar with using bright-light exposure to shift your body clock so you can overcome jet lag more quickly. But what about exercising to achieve the same goal? Researchers at Arizona State University and the University of California, San Diego, found that exercising at 7 a.m. or between 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. was effective for advancing the body clock, whereas training between 7 p.m. and 10 p.m. worked to delay the clock. “Delays or advances would be desired . . .

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High-Cadence Cycling and Recreational Cyclists

By Shirley Archer, JD, MA | October 15, 2019 |

A recent study supports indoor cycling instructors who urge students not to pedal at a cadence above 90 revolutions per minute. Researchers found that at 90 rpm and beyond, pedal forces exerted by recreational cyclists decreased, heart rate increased by 15%, and exercise efficiency and skeletal muscle oxygenation declined.

The study appeared in the International Journal of Sports Medicine (2019; 40 [5], 305–11).

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Muscular Strength and Mental Well-Being

By Shirley Archer, JD, MA | October 15, 2019 |

In a study of midlife women in Singapore, weak upper- and lower-body strength was associated with depression and anxiety. Researchers analyzed data from 1,159 healthy women ages 45–69 for physical activity, physical performance, lifestyle choices, reproductive health, sociodemographic characteristics, and depression and anxiety symptoms. Weak handgrip strength and poor lower-body strength were associated with elevated symptoms of depression and/or anxiety. Fifteen percent of participants reported depression and/or anxiety.

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