Chocolate: A sweet method for stroke prevention

Eating a moderate amount of chocolate each week may be associated with a lower risk of stroke in men, according to a new study. "While other studies have looked at how chocolate may help cardiovascular health, this is the first of its kind study to find that chocolate, may be beneficial for reducing stroke in men," said study author Susanna C. Larsson, PhD.

For the study, 37,103 men ages 49 to 75 were given a food questionnaire that assessed how often they consumed various foods and drinks and were asked how often they had chocolate. Researchers then identified stroke cases through a hospital discharge registry. Over 10 years, there were 1,995 cases of first stroke.

Caffeine DOESN'T cause heart palpitations

Its high caffeine content has made made it a firm favourite for people needing to kick start their day.

But there have long been fears that coffee can trigger dangerous heart palpitations, deterring some people from drinking it.

Now, however, scientists say drinking a strong coffee in the morning can deliver a much needed boost without setting the heart racing.

New research has shown that regular caffeine consumption does not trigger potentially dangerous heart palpitations - and can actually be good for cardiovascular health.

The scientists found consuming caffeine does not lead to extra heartbeats, which although common, can lead occasionally lead to heart or stroke-related deaths.

Health food SHOULDN'T be branded as 'healthy

Calling a food healthy can actually put people off eating it, researchers have warned.

Instead, scientists found people far respond better to healthy symbols.

Symbols that signify that something is healthy – rather seeing than the word 'healthy' itself – make people more likely to pick a nutritious snack, according to a new study.

'The word 'healthy' seems to turn people off, particularly when it appears on foods that are obviously healthy,' said Dr Traci Mann, who led the research.

'The subtle health message, such as the healthy heart symbol, seemed to be more effective at leading people to choose a healthy option.'

Aggressive behavior linked specifically to secondhand smoke exposure in childhood

Children who are exposed to secondhand smoke in early childhood are more likely to grow up to physically aggressive and antisocial, regardless of whether they were exposed during pregnancy, according to Linda Pagani and Caroline Fitzpatrick.

"Secondhand smoke is in fact more dangerous that inhaled smoke, and 40% of children worldwide are exposed to it. Moreover, exposure to this smoke at early childhood is particularly dangerous, as the child's brain is still developing," Pagani said. "I looked at data that was collected about 2,055 kids from their birth until ten years of age, including parent reports about secondhand smoke exposure and from teachers and children themselves about classroom behaviour.

Signs of faster aging process identified through gene research

New research has shed light on the molecular changes that occur in our bodies as we age.

In the largest study of its kind, researchers, examined expression of genes in blood samples from 15,000 people across the world.

They found 1,450 genes that are linked to aging, and also uncovered a link between these genes and factors such as diet, smoking and exercise.