Thursday, September 1, 2011

Topics, Topics, Topics

Another 'Monkey Brain' morning… time to pour the well deserved morning cup of Kona (coffee) and just let this poor warped brain take us on a short ride through today’s topics.

Here is one I enjoyed: A suspected reckless motorcycle rider has discovered the law's long arm now reaches into cyberspace. The Yakima County Sheriff's office says they tracked the 19-year-old man down via Facebook. The incident began when a man on a motorcycle outran pursuing deputies late last week. Authorities later noticed a Facebook posting by a man boasting about eluding officers, as well as a photo on the page of a motorcycle similar to the one they sought. When the suspect was rousted at 4 a.m. Saturday by deputies with both a search warrant and a printout of the page, he acknowledged he was the rider. The man has been charged with reckless driving and other infractions. -Too bad they can’t charge him with “public stupidity” (no, on second thought I am glad they can’t….)

O.K., here is another one that raised my eyebrow… A woman’s breast implant ruptured after she was shot in the chest last week with a paintball pellet. The 26-year-old’s soft-gel implant ruptured when the paintball hit her breast at 190 mph.

The injury is believed to be the first of its kind (yeah, I can believe that…).

A spokesman for UKPaintball — which runs the Paintzone Paintball Park near Croydon, South London, where the accident happened — said: "Part of the fun of paintball is that it hurts a bit when you get shot, but in all the years we've been going we've never seen an incident like this (part of the fun is that it hurts? Well, ok…). "It came as a real surprise to hear that a woman had her implant burst at one of our centers."

The spokesman said that women with breast implants will be given 'extra padding' in the future to prevent similar injuries. Douglas McGeorge, the former president of the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons, said the bizarre injury could cost the woman £3,000, or about $4,900.

Now here is a topic that really makes me happy… Chocolate may be good for the heart. New research presented at Europe's biggest medical meeting suggested chocolate consumption might be associated with a one third reduction in the risk of developing heart disease. Just why there should be such a link was unclear, the European Society of Cardiology congress was told (why do people always have to question it when you hear something good?).

There has been a string of scientific studies in recent years showing a potential health benefit from eating chocolate. Dark chocolate, in particular, contains compounds called flavanols thought to be good for the blood system. In an attempt to paint a clearer picture, Oscar Franco and colleagues from the University of Cambridge pooled results from seven studies involving 100,000 people.

Five of the studies showed a beneficial link between eating chocolate and cardiovascular health, while two did not (those two were probably poorly done).

Overall, the findings showed the highest levels of chocolate consumption were associated with a 37 percent reduction in cardiovascular disease and a 29 percent reduction in stroke compared with the lowest levels.

Victoria Taylor, of the British Heart Foundation, who was not involved in the research, said: "If you want to reduce your heart disease risk, there are much better places to start than at the bottom of a box of chocolates." (true, but you have to start somewhere…)

Franco, whose findings were also published online in the British Medical Journal, said while it seemed chocolate had heart benefits, these could easily be outweighed by the unhealthy nature of much confectionery.

"The high sugar and fat content of commercially available chocolate should be considered, and initiatives to reduce it might permit an improved exposure to the beneficial effect of chocolate," the research team wrote. (I hate it when they get too technical…)

I wonder if I can talk my cardiologist into writing me a prescription for a bag of Dove Chocolates….

Well, until next time – Live Long and Prosper….

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