Today’s Headlines: Powdered Caffeine, Heart Age, and Middle-Aged Weight Gain

More evidence surfaces against the dangers of powdered caffeine. Earlier this week the FDA issued a warning to several powdered caffeine companies because of how dangerous the product has proven to be. “In its pure form, caffeine is powerful. A teaspoon of caffeine powder is roughly equal to 28 cups of coffee, and a tablespoon can be lethal.” The FDA stated that there is a fine line between just enough and too much of caffeine powder, and that thin line has caused serious illness, injury, and death in some people that have used the product in the past. (The New York Times)

Your heart age may be older than you. Studies have shown that people who smoke, who have diabetes, or who are overweight are much more likely to have an older heart age. “They found that nearly 69 million adults between the ages of 30 and 74 have a heart age older than their actual age. The report also showed significant differences based on gender and other factors. For example, the average heart age for adult men is 8 years older than their chronological age, compared to 5 years older for women.” While this may cause some people to worry about their heart–and rightfully so–the researchers said that it is relatively easy to decrease heart age by making healthy choices, stopping smoking, and monitoring things such as blood pressure and cholesterol. (Fox)

Middle-aged weight gain may cause the onset of Alzheimer’s later in life. A recent study has proven that BMI is directly correlated with speeding up the process of Alzheimer’s in people that are already at risk for getting the disease. “The researchers checked how much those Alzheimer’s patients weighed when they were 50 and still cognitively healthy. They tracked BMI, or body mass index, a measure of weight to height. Every step up on the BMI chart predicted that when Alzheimer’s eventually struck, it would be 6½ months sooner.” While it has not yet been proven that losing weight passed the age of 50 will help, researchers are optimistic that with more studies they can potentially figure out a way to stall the spreading of the disease. (NBC)