weekly blog--one for the ages
Researchers have identified a small molecule, β-Hydroxybutyrate, which is produced during calorie restriction or fasting that can prevent cells from becoming old. When people overeat or become obese researchers say this molecule is possibly suppressed, which would accelerate aging.
A recent study found that adults who reported frequently participating in tennis or other racket and team sports lived longer than people who were sedentary. The surprise…they also lived longer than people who took part in reliably healthy but often solitary activities such as jogging, swimming and cycling. The results raise interesting questions about the role that social interactions might play in augmenting the benefits of exercise.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that more than half of adults and one-third of children and teens in the United States live with at least one chronic illness. In a new paper, a medical professional posits that most chronic illnesses are caused by the biological reaction to an injury. The illness occurs because the body is unable to complete the healing process. Consequently, the researcher suggests science may be on the cusp of treatments directed at the underlying processes that block the healing cycle.
It’s easy to understand the political appeal of “Medicare-for-all, but scratch beyond the slogan and “Medicare-for-all” starts to raise more questions than it answers. If you look at the actual plans forwarded by progressive groups supporting universal coverage, you’ll find a range of ideas—from quickly replacing private health care with a government-run health system to slowly moving toward a hybrid scenario in which universal government insurance coexists with a private market.
The bottom line is that Medicare is nothing like the big single-payer programs typically envisioned by supporters. Rather, it’s a lot like the rest of American health care: bewilderingly complex, stitched together financially with premiums and other out-of-pocket costs, and heavily dependent on the existing landscape of private insurance companies. Extending it to “all” could mean expanding the current patchwork quilt into an even bigger hybrid, or jettisoning it for an entirely government-run system, or something in the middle.