回顧星期天LBS - 科學相關時事趣聞 All about Science

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Topic: Eating a big breakfast could double the amount of calories you burn in the day, according to a new study

Eating a big breakfast could help you burn double the amount of calories than if you eat a larger meal at dinner.


It could be the key to losing weight while also keeping blood sugar levels steady, researchers at Lübeck University in Germany said.


Their study found filling up in the morning boosts a metabolism process known as diet-induced thermogenesis (DIT).


DIT refers to the number of calories the body expends to heat the body and digest food. It was shown to be twice as high for those who ate more at breakfast than at dinner.


The study also showed increases in blood sugar and insulin concentrations, caused by eating a meal, was diminished after breakfast, but not so much after dinner.


The results also showed eating a low-calorie breakfast caused sweet cravings with a higher appetite.


This suggests those saving all their calories for the end of the day may face consequences because they snack more.


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Topic: Air pollution ’pandemic’ shortens lives by 3 years: study 研究:空污「大爆發」 人類減壽3年

A ’pandemic’ of air pollution shortens lives worldwide by nearly three years on average, and causes 8.8 million premature deaths annually, scientists said Tuesday.


Eliminating the toxic cocktail of molecules and lung-clogging particles cast off by burning oil, gas and coal would restore a full year of life expectancy, they reported in the journal Cardiovascular Research.


Compared to other causes of premature death, air pollution kills 19 times more people each year than malaria, nine times more than HIV/AIDS, and three times more than alcohol, the study found.


Coronary heart disease and stroke account for almost half of those deaths, with lung diseases and other non-communicable diseases such as diabetes and high blood pressure accounting for most of the rest. Only six percent of mortality stemming from polluted air is due to lung cancer.

冠狀動脈心臟病和中風的人數,約佔全球提早死亡人數的一半,其餘死因則多半與肺病及糖尿病和高血壓等非傳染性疾病有關。而因空污致死的案例中, 死於肺癌者僅佔6%。

The worst-hit region is Asia, where average lifespan is cut 4.1 years in China, 3.9 years in India, and 3.8 years in Pakistan.


Source article: https://features.ltn.com.tw/english/article/paper/1360772 ; https://features.ltn.com.tw/english/article/paper/1358960

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Topic: Chemical found in spinach has the same effect as steroids and should be banned for athletes, scientists say

Maybe Popeye was onto something when he ripped open a can of spinach for beating up the bad guys.


Scientists in Germany say, ecdysterone, a chemical found in spinach is close to steroids and has a similar effect on humans. Researchers at Freie Universität Berlin ran a 10-week test on nearly 50 athletes and found athletes who took capsules of ecdysterone increased their strength by up to three times.


The capsules the athletes were given were the equivalent of about nine pounds of spinach but researchers say the capsules could be used as a performance enhancing drug. The study has called on the World Anti-Doping Authority to dig further into ecdysterone and wants the chemical added to the list of banned substances for athletes.


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Topic: Genes, yes, but obesity pandemic mostly down to diet:study 研究:基因有影響,但肥胖流行病主因在飲食

A three-fold jump since 1975 in the percentage of adults worldwide who are obese has been driven mainly by a shift in diet and lack of exercise, but genes do play a role as well, according a large-scale study published Thursday.


For people genetically predisposed to a wider girth, these unhealthy lifestyles compounded the problem, resulting in an even higher rate of weight gain, researchers reported in The BMJ, a peer-reviewed medical journal.


To tease out the relative impact of environment and genes on obesity, scientists led by Maria Brandkvist at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology combed through data on nearly 120,000 people in Norway whose height and weight were regularly measured between 1963 and 2008.


Adults began tipping the scales at significantly higher weights in the 1980s and 1990s, they found. Those born after 1970 were far more likely to have a substantially higher BMI as young adults than earlier generations.


Source article: https://features.ltn.com.tw/english/article/paper/1312177 ; https://features.ltn.com.tw/english/article/paper/1313703

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Topic: Science proves that alcohol increases your ability to speak a second language 科學證實,酒精增進你的第二外語口說能力

A new study published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology has found that a bit of Dutch courage might be the key to boosting your ability to speak a second language.


Researchers tested 50 native German speakers who had just learned Dutch. Some were given a low dose of alcohol, and others a control beverage with no alcohol, and then were asked to have a conversation in Dutch.


The study showed that those who were slightly intoxicated had better pronunciation than their sober counterparts. Alcohol may impair your memory, making it harder to pay attention and recall facts, but on the other hand, it also boosts your self-confidence.


However, participants in this study consumed a low dose of alcohol, and that higher levels of alcohol consumption might not have beneficial effects on the pronunciation of a foreign language. The participants knew what they were drinking, so it’s not clear if their speech improved because of alcohol’s psychological or biological effects.


Source article: http://iservice.ltn.com.tw/Service/english/english.php?engno=1149846&day=2017-11-07