Exercise 'keeps the mind sharp' in over-50s, study finds

Doing moderate exercise several times a week is the best way to keep the mind sharp if you're over 50, research suggests.

Thinking and memory skills were most improved when people exercised the heart and muscles on a regular basis, a review of 39 studies found. According to BBC

This remained true in those who already showed signs of cognitive decline.

Taking up exercise at any age was worthwhile for the mind and body, the researchers said.

Experts excited by brain 'wonder-drug'

Scientists hope they have found a drug to stop all neurodegenerative brain diseases, including dementia. According to BBC

In 2013, a team stopped brain cells dying in an animal for the first time, creating headline news around the world.

But the compound used was unsuitable for people, as it caused organ damage.

Now two drugs have been found that should have the same protective effect on the brain and are already safely used in people.

Poor sleep in anxiety, depression may make it harder to see positive

A lack of sleep makes everything harder. Focusing, finishing assignments, and coping with everyday stress can become monumental tasks. According to Science daily.

People with anxiety and depression often have sleep problems. But little has been known about whether or how their poor sleep affects a specific region of the brain known to be involved in regulating negative emotional responses.

Researchers have found that this area of the brain, the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex, may have to work harder to modify negative emotional responses in people with poor sleep who have depression or anxiety.

'Touchscreen-toddlers' sleep less, researchers say

Toddlers who spend time playing on smart phones and tablets seem to get slightly less sleep than those who do not, say researchers. According to BBC

The study suggests every hour spent using a touchscreen each day was linked to 15 minutes less sleep.

However, those playing with touchscreens do develop their fine motor skills more quickly.

Experts said the study was "timely" but parents should not lose sleep over it.

Fresh fruit consumption linked to lower risk of diabetes and diabetic complications

In a research Huaidong Du and colleagues report that greater consumption of fresh fruit was associated with a lower incidence of diabetes, as well as reduced occurrence of complications in people with diabetes. According to Science daily

Although the health benefits of diets including fresh fruit and vegetables are well established, the sugar content of fruit has led to uncertainty about associated risks of diabetes and of vascular complications of the disease. Du and colleagues studied nearly 500,000 people participating over about 7 years of follow-up, documenting new cases of diabetes and recording the occurrence of vascular disease and death in people with pre-existing diabetes.