Today’s Headlines: How Exercise May Help Insomnia, A Potential Way to Ease Anxiety, and Why Some Carbs Are Bad For You

Moderate aerobic exercise may help men with insomnia. A new study has found that exercise might help overweight or obese men fall asleep. “Regular aerobic exercise training reduces sedentary time, reduces appetite, improves cardiovascular performance and increases self-esteem and self-efficacy…It also increases sleep need for recovering and improving body tissues such as muscles, tendons, and organs related to respiration and blood flow, and it improves mood…After six months, the exercise group took less time to fall asleep and less often had difficulty falling asleep than the comparison group. Men in the exercise group also reported fewer occasions of waking up in the night, more efficient sleep and better sleep quality based on how they felt in the mornings, as reported in Sleep Medicine.” Between 40-80 percent of overweight and obese men have insomnia and these findings could benefit their overall health. (Reuters)

Random acts of kindness may help you overcome anxiety. Psychologists have found a correlation between being kind and lower stress levels in social situations. “The results: The first group, who engaged in acts of kindness, ‘experienced a greater overall reduction in avoidance goals.’ That is, they experienced fewer instances of avoiding social situations because of their fear of rejection or conflict. Trew and Alden concluded that ‘acts of kindness may help to strengthen social relationships, increase social engagement, and broaden social networks.’” The psychologists hope that “…cognitive therapies can be designed to boost optimism in particularly anxious people, thereby alleviating their emotional distress.” (Washington Post)

Some carbohydrates may increase your risk for cancer. Researchers have found another reason why you should avoid bad carbs like soda, pizza, and fast food. “They’ve presented their findings at the American Society for Nutrition Scientific Sessions and Annual Meeting, and note that the link is strongest to prostate cancer, which is nearly twice as common among men who eat ‘bad’ carbs over ‘good’ ones, such as legumes and whole grains.” While the study was done on mostly white volunteers, the results seem to be significant enough for continued study. (Fox)