By: Molly Mitchell
NBC News Chief Medical Editor, Dr. Nancy Snyderman, and PBS “Need to Know” Medical Correspondent, Dr. Emily Senay, shared the latest medical headlines, including the benefits of sitting less, the new hopes in the fight against Alzheimer’s and why they like Mayor Bloomberg’s proposal of banning “Big Gulps.”
The first topic was spurred by a study the online medical journal, BMJ Open, released last Monday. The study proclaimed that sitting three hours or more a day can shave up to two years off a person’s life. Dr. Snyderman’s advice was, “If you have a desk job get up every hour on the hour and move, but I don’t love that study.” With Dr. Senay adding, “Nancy is right, the science is weak, the headline was great and the message is still great. Don’t sit for three hours in a row, get up and move around.”
Mika then pointed out that the overall problem is that people are heavier now, with both doctors agreeing that’s the case. Senay summed it up stating, “It does become sort of a self-fulfilling prophecy, you’re sedentary and it gets harder to move the more weight you put on. So I think the message is still good, which is get up every hour, move around, instead of texting the people or emailing the people two offices down get up and go talk to them.”
The panel then moved on to discussing finding the cure for Alzheimer’s. Over the weekend there was big news in identifying patients contracting Alzheimer’s at a much early stage. Snyderman reported, “As a person ages a change in gait [a change in how you walk]…may be the first sign into dementia, so you can intercede earlier, get diagnosed earlier.”
Snyderman went on to talk about her personal experience with her father. She shared that she and her siblings began noticing a change in their father’s memory abilities. They decided to step in with two simple measures. They gave their parents a dog and every day they have a younger friend in his forties go over to have stimulating conversations with their father and walk a mile and a half. Snyderman notes, “You can change the aging brain…but you have to decide that it’s worth saving.”
The group wrapped up the health segment with John Heilemann asking the doctors how they feel about Mayor Bloomberg’s attempt to ban over-sized soda beverages. Snyderman responded, “Anything that can make people consumer fewer calories and move more, I’m all for.” Willie chimed in, “Mika, you’re winning celebrate” with John adding Hash tag winning, Mika!”
So what did the MoJoe Blog staff learn today? Move ever hour, if you’re old get young friends and Mika is #winning.