The Cost Of Walking

Any parent that takes their kid out for a walk knows that children tire more quickly than adults, but why is that? Do kids and small adults walk differently from taller people or do they tire faster for some other reason? Peter Weyand from Southern Methodist University, USA, is fascinated by the effect that body size has on physiological function. ‘This goes back to Max Kleiber’s work on resting metabolic rates for different sized animals. He found that the bigger you are the slower each gram of tissue uses energy,’ explains Weyand, who adds, ‘It’s interesting to know how and why metabolism is regulated that way.’ Intrigued by the question of why smaller people use more energy per kilogram body mass than larger individuals when walking, Weyand teamed up with Maurice Puyau and Nancy Butte, from the USDA/ARS Children’s Nutrition Research Center at Baylor College of Medicine, and undergraduate Bethany Smith. Together they decided to measure the metabolic rates of children and adults, ranging from 5 to 32 years old, weighing between 15.9kg and 88.7kg and ranging in height from 1.07m to 1.83m, to try to find out why larger people are more economical walkers than smaller people. Weyand and his colleagues publish their discovery that walkers of all heights use the same amount of energy per stride, making short people less economical because they take more steps. They also derive a fundamental equation to calculate exactly how much energy walkers use with direct applications in all walks of life. The team publishes its discovery on 12 November 2010 in The Journal of Experimental Biology at http://jeb.biologists.org/cgi/content/abstract/213/23/3972. [Read more...]

Holiday Cottages

Having an amazing holiday without the need to shell out much for the accommodation is really a good idea, especially for people who have plans and to those who are now into a budget vacation. Traveling to other places is all about having fun and learning how to appreciate the beauty of life. Thus, going on vacation nowadays, to different parts of the universe is on the rise. Well, if you are one of those who are planning to go on a holiday vacation, for budget travelers and those who are traveling with family, holiday lets are ideal one, where you can do your usual household chores such as cooking in a fully equipped kitchen and save on eating out.

Meanwhile, how about having ski accommodation France during off season to avail great discounts? Well, there are a lot of holiday apartments and chalets in the French Alps for skiing apartment accommodation or chalet rental. And if you can possibly schedule your holiday when business is slow, then you will get a chance to stay in premium accommodation at a very affordable price. This is one of the great times of the year, as even luxurious accommodation offer discounts. These places leave a lasting impression on the minds of people who have been there, which is why they oftentimes came back and savor its awesome beauty.

In a nutshell, these homes are also cost effective because it does not make you pay for all the extras such as daily room servicing, and other facilities that you may not use. Sometimes, choosing an area that is located away from the usual range of properties can land you good discounts. Of course, instead of looking for board and lodging near central place, you can opt for lodging in the outskirts. Thus, with the additional savings, not only you can splurge on other activities, but you can also enjoy holiday to its fullest. So, make sure to visits the above mentioned for your next holiday vacation.

GLOBAL MARKETS-Dollar Holds Gains, Boosts Japan Stocks

The U.S. dollar rose marginally on Wednesday to hit its highest levels since late October against a basket of major currencies as the euro extended its losses over worries about euro zone sovereign debt.

The dollar’s strength boosted exporters in Japan, helping to push the Nikkei average up to a four-month high, while gold and silver inched up again after pulling back from record highs reached on Tuesday.

The dollar gained as U.S. Treasury bond yields rose, with the impact of the currency move felt across asset classes. The dollar index rose as high as 77.869, a level it last touched in late October.

“We’ve failed to notice that there is an improved tone to U.S. data and that is manifesting itself in a bounce in the U.S. dollar and it is manifesting itself in a bounce in U.S. Treasury yields,” said Robert Rennie, chief currency strategist at Westpac Bank in Sydney. “That is a process that can go a bit further. It’s quite a potent force in the short term,” he said. [Read more...]

Hidden Heart Disease

Scott Cote, a 41-year-old software engineer, lost weight, cut sodium and began exercising to control his blood pressure, all as a result of new attention being given to prehypertension. It’s a precursor to hypertension, or high blood pressure. And it has its own risks of stroke and heart disease.

About a third of all U.S. adults have prehypertension, a borderline zone with its own risk of stroke, heart disease and likelihood of worsening into full hypertension. Laura Landro has details and offers five ways to lower your blood pressure.

Mr. Cote, a participant in a study at Massachusetts General Hospital through his employer, EMC Corp., monitors his blood pressure at home and uploads the readings to a website, where a “virtual coach” gives him personalized tips, reminders and feedback to help him stay on track. His new lifestyle, which he adopted after his doctor gave him the prehypertension diagnosis in 2008, is a big change from his old sedentary habits. [Read more...]

Laughter Can Make You Snooze 100 Times A Day!

Laughter may be the best medicine, but for some, it’s nothing less than a disorder – a sleep disorder called narcolepsy can send a person into an instant slumber without warning if you laugh.

People with this order suffer temporary muscle weakness when they experience emotions such as surprise, fear and the exhilaration that comes from a good belly laugh.

It usually manifests itself as cataplexy, in which wide-awake sufferers “flop” as if falling into a deep sleep, reports The Daily Express.

“I lost strength in my hands or my head went limp and nodded forward for a few seconds when I laughed,” said Claire Allen, who suffers from the disorder. [Read more...]

Family Christmas Hampers

One thing that automatically gets in our mind especially that the yuletide season is now fast approaching, is gift giving. To some extent, thinking of what gifts to buy for family and friends can be stressful sometimes because you need to plan ahead on what items are most appropriate and suitable for them. Yet, the first thing you should have done is look around and get as much idea as possible, and come up with a handful of information before finally deciding on the purchase of christmas hampers. If possible, try to refrain from impulsive buying so as to preclude purchasing something that is not worth its price.

Further, be realistic enough. There are certain things that typically add up to the price of goods you are going to buy such as expensive alcoholic drinks and or chocolate and sweets that are out of season. Furthermore, you need to be sure to look around, and even try shopping online because it is the best route of getting the best gifts you can ever think of. Now, if you still have apprehensions on what to choose and get for festive gifts, why not think of making up your very own? You can get some hints from people around you and you can even get some tips by going online.

Eating Junk Food As Addictive As Drugs

A British study suggests that a diet of burgers, chips and cake programmes your brain to crave even more for foods that are high in sugar, salt and fat content – just like drugs.

Over the years, junk food can become a substitute for happiness and can lead bingers to become addicted.

Paul Kenny, a neuro scientist, carried out the research which shows how dangerous high fat and high sugar foods can be to our health. “You lose control. It’s the hallmark of addiction,” he said.

Researchers believe it is one of the first studies to suggest brains may react in the same way to junk food as they do to drugs, reports the Telegraph. [Read more...]