Photo Credit: Concordia University
Many Canadians suffer from health concerns regarding their weight, especially the growing concerns around obesity. New research now shows that obesity can contribute majorly to other illnesses, with asthma being just one on a list of many.
A new Canadian study looks into what effects obesity can have on asthma, specifically focusing on exercise-induced asthma. Exercise-induced asthma, commonly known as EIA, is a specific type of asthma that induces an asthma attack specifically when exercising. It can happen to people who experience asthma on a regular basis, as well as those who don’t. EIA is generally triggered because of the different ways we breathe when exercising and when at rest. When exercising, we breathe through our mouth—which causes cold, dry air to hit our lungs, thus triggering the attack.
The study—a collaborative effort between Concordia University, Université du Québec à Montréal and Hôpital du Sacre-Coeur de Montréal—examines the high . . . → Read More: Which comes first: exercise-induced asthma or obesity? Concordia researchers ask the classic question
In the not-so-distant past, diversity training was often viewed as a politically correct chore for some organizations. However, according to a new study from Ryerson University and York University, executives that associate positive values with diversity training are happier in their careers and more loyal to their companies.
Researchers Charity-Ann Hannan, Wendy Cukier, Margaret Yap and Mark Holmes. (Photo Credit: Ryerson University)
Corporate diversity training incorporates exercises and policies geared towards creating greater understanding of different ethnic backgrounds in order to facilitate collaboration and cooperation in the workplace.
The study, directed by lead author Margaret Yap, found that Canadian managers, professionals and executives who saw diversity training to be beneficial reported greater career satisfaction and commitment to their companies. In fact, these diversity-trained professionals were seven to 14 per cent more satisfied than their counterparts, who did not see value or were not offered diversity training in their . . . → Read More: Diversity Daze: Culturally Attuned Managers More Satisfied with Their Careers
Photo Credit: Danny Abriel/Dalhousie University
While party-goers may love the convenient allure of mixing energy-boosting drinks with alcohol—which is a natural depressant—a new study from Dalhousie University shows that this popular combination can be more dangerous than practical.
In a recent study published in Drug and Alcohol Review, researcher Sean Barrett found that consuming energy drinks—such as Red Bull or Rockstar—led people to drink twice the amount of alcohol. According to Barrett, those studied reported that “if they had an average of four drinks when they weren’t mixing with energy drinks, they would have around eight if they were.”
While the exact cause of this occurrence still requires further research, there may be a variety of social and physiological factors at play. For one, many people consuming drinks mixing hard liquor and energy beverages are in a social situation—and people tend to drink more in a social environment. . . . → Read More: Skip the Red Bull at that Holiday Party: Study Shows People Drink Double the Alcohol When Also Consuming Energy Drinks
Photo Credit: KB35
While many dog-lovers can attest to the bond and affection shared between a dog and owner, a new study from Carleton University shows that pet pooches can also be valuable assets for children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD).
Carleton researcher Cosmin Coltea studied the relationship between pet dogs and families with autistic or non-autistic children. In these studies, which involved interviewing 20 families with dogs, Coltea found that most children—whether autistic or non-autistic—attained feelings of companionship and support from pet dogs. However, some of the autistic children studied also learned relational and social skills through understanding the world of their dog; according to Coltea, the “kids were able to relate more quickly to their pets than to people, and dogs sometimes acted as a replacement for human friends.”
In addition to providing positive relationships with autistic children, Coltea’s research also indicates that pet dogs can . . . → Read More: Pet-icularly Good Companions: Study Shows Pet Dogs Beneficial to Children with Autism
Photo Credit: killrbeez
It’s officially late-December and, as a result, it’s difficult to go anywhere without being slapped in the face with the red-and-green sparkling garnishes that come along with the holiday season. Unfortunately, as researchers from Simon Fraser University attest, this public Christmas-décor mania has emotional consequences for those that don’t celebrate the holiday.
Led by Simon Fraser University professors Michael Schmitt and Stephen Wright, researchers conducted a series of experiments involving self-reported data from university students.
In both experiments, participants were asked to complete questionnaires about their moods; the trick was that the students filled out their questionnaires in one of two rooms—one of which had a 12-inch Christmas tree displayed on the desk.
In the first study, those who had previously reported celebrating the Christmas showed more positive moods in the company of the tree, while those that previously reported not celebrating the holiday responded . . . → Read More: Lights, Trees, Santa! — Christmas Displays Not So Merry for Everybody
Let’s hope that, unlike me, you didn’t spend too much time memorizing the atomic weights of elements on the periodic table back in Chemistry 11—because things are about to change.
University of Calgary researcher Dr. Michael Wieser. (Photo Credit: Riley Brandt/University of Calgary)
A new periodic table outlined by the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry’s (IUPAC) Commission on Isotopic Abundances and Atomic Weights shows that the atomic weights of 10 elements—hydrogen, lithium, boron, carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, silicon, sulfur, chlorine and thallium — will change.
Historically, all elements were assigned a single-value standard atomic weight. Upon further investigation, however, scientists have found that the atomic weights of certain elements have natural fluctuations in weight depending on where the particular element is found. As University of Calgary associate professor and IUPAC secretary Dr. Michael Wieser explains, “[a]s technology improved, we have discovered that the numbers on our chart . . . → Read More: Back to the (Periodic) Drawing Table: Researchers Revamp the Table of Standard Atomic Weights
A female red squirrel. (Photo Credit: Ryan W. Taylor/University of Guelph)
According to a new study from the University of Guelph, female squirrels participate in very open sexual behaviours, mating with as many male squirrels as approach them.
The study, which followed the mating chases of 85 female squirrels, suggests that promiscuous squirrel mating activities do not have a genetic basis—female squirrels determine their mating strategies based on occasion alone. In the cases examined in the study, female squirrels mated with anywhere from one to 14 male squirrels based on the opportunities offered.
This openness, however, can be dangerous for the female animals: encouraging harassment from male squirrels, exposing them to predators, wasting energy and increasing risk of sexually transmitted diseases.
These findings are important for scientists to understand how squirrels interact and how they may evolve; as Guelph researcher Eryn McFarlane explains, because the causes of female . . . → Read More: Promiscuous Squirrel: University of Guelph Study Shows Female Squirrels Driven by Opportunity
A new study conducted by the Canadian Lung Association investigating risk factors for lung disease in Canada has shed light on some surprising trends in the lungs of Canadians; the study suggests that a lack of awareness is one of the most common issues when it comes to the lung health of Canadians.
(Photo Credit: SuperFantastic)
Although lung cancer—which is linked to exposure to tobacco smoke—continues to be the leading cause of cancer death for Canadians, the study shows that many Canadians still struggle to avoid smoking around non-smokers.
The study, co-authored by Memorial University researcher David Saltman and University of British Columbia respirologist Shannon Walker, reports that as many as 35 per cent of smokers still smoke indoors in the presence of non-smokers, 18 per cent of smokers smoke indoors in the presence of children and eight per cent of smokers smoke with children in the car.
. . . → Read More: Canadian Smokers Still Lighting Up Around Kids: Study Investigates Current State of Canadians and Lung Disease
Indeed, colour is important when it comes to selecting a mate—at least, it matters if you’re a fish.
In a study published in BMC Biology, researchers from Queen’s University found that light and colour impact the mate choices of cichlid fish.
Male cichlid fish are typically identifiable by their bright, vibrant colouring and marks. By altering the ambient light in the underwater environment, researchers, led by PhD candidate Shai Sabbah, were able to change the colour of fish in the eyes of other fish. As a result, female cichlids did not recognize and consequently did not choose males of their species to mate with.
Queen's researcher Shai Sabbah. (Photo Credit: Queen's University)
In this way, the Queen’s researchers highlight the importance of colour vision for the survival of certain species. When ecosystems are permanently altered through human factors such as deforestation, visual aspects can be changed in turn; . . . → Read More: Think Carefully About That Turquoise Top Before Your Next Date: Colour Matters When Choosing a Mate
According to a new study released from the University of Calgary, the millions of people a year turning to Botox injections for a variety of cosmetic and therapeutic purposes may ultimately be getting more than they’re bargaining for.
Researchers, including lead study author Rafael Fortuna, gave small animals dosages of Clostridium botulinum toxin A neurotoxin complex (the complex that makes up Botox) simulated to resemble the typical dosages used for therapeutic purposes to treat conditions like cerebral palsy. About six months post-injection, the study found that the animals showed unintended side effects including muscle weakness, loss and atrophy throughout their bodies —not just at the site of injection as intended.
University of Calgary researchers Dr. Walter Herzog and Rafeal Fortuna. (Photo Credit: Jeremy Hexham)
Based on the findings of this study, Fortuna suggests that “it’s fair to say that the paper raises some important questions about the long-term . . . → Read More: University of Calgary Study Suggests Botox May Be More Than You’re Bargaining For