Color & Control:


Lack of darker skin in textbooks harms care

In dermatology, where images are critical for diagnoses, the lack of images of darker skin poses a roadblock to both proper treatment and medical education. Skin conditions that involve redness or pinkness in light skin can be more subtle or harder to see in dark skin, and physicians without adequate training are prone to misdiagnosing people of colour. Jules Lipoff, an assistant professor of clinical dermatology at the U of Pennsylvania, showed images of dark skin were presented only 4% – 18% of the time. Many dermatology textbooks and journals had no images of dark skin with acne, psoriasis, or dermatitis. Of note, when it came to syphilis and other sexually transmitted diseases, many sources relied twice as heavily on pictures of dark skin.

Therapy dogs and fibromyalgia

People living with fibromyalgia experienced a more positive emotional/physiologic state after a single session with a therapy dog. Even though there is still no recognized cure for the condition, Mayo Clinic researchers identified animalassisted activity as an effective tool to help manage both the physical and mental health of patients. The study also measured the emotional state of each therapy dog during the treatment session to better understand the visit’s impact on the specially-trained canine companions. Physiologic readings suggested the dogs were also calmer at the end of their patient sessions.
Source: Purina “Better Together”

Vitamin C helps retain muscle mass over 50

For better muscles in later life, eat plenty of vitamin C—commonly found in citrus fruits, berries and vegetables—to stay strong. British researchers claim that older adults tend to lose skeletal muscle mass—leading to sarcopenia (a condition characterised by loss of skeletal muscle mass and function), frailty and reduced quality of life without vitamin C.
Source: University of East Anglia

Acts of kindness

Performing random acts of kindness and helping others can be good for you. But not all good-hearted behavior is equally beneficial to the giver. Researchers found that spontaneous acts rather than scheduled volunteering reaped stronger wellness rewards. The type of kindness, the giver’s age, and gender also played a role. Younger givers reported higher levels of overall well-being, eudaimonic well-being, and psychological functioning, while older givers reported higher levels of physical health. Also, women showed stronger relationships between prosociality and several other measures of well-being compared with men—perhaps because women are stereotypically expected to be more caring and giving, and thus derive a stronger sense of good feelings for acting in accordance with those social norms.
Source: American Psychological Association

Walk yourself to sleep

Even a small increase in the number of steps you take each day could make nightly snoozes more restful. A study by researchers at the Brandeis University Psychology Department, shows promising evidence that physical activity, even low-impact exercise as commonplace as walking, can help improve an individual’s quality of sleep. And results were particularly notable in women who joined the study.
Source: National Sleep Foundation journal Sleep Health

Does porn cause violent sex crimes?

New research findings published in Trauma, Violence & Abuse suggest there is no connection between consumption of pornography and sexual violence. Meta-analytic research examined more than 50 correlational, experimental and population studies spanning 40 years and proved that poorly designed studies tended to be more likely to support the proposed link. “Evidence suggests that policy makers should examine other causes of sexual aggression, and that beliefs about pornography may be driven more by methodological mistakes than sound science.”
Source: Stetson University

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