New Drug May Reverse Hair Loss

A mice study has shown promising results for both hair and skin.

Johns Hopkins researchers have used a compound to reverse the signs of hair loss and skin damage when tested on mice. This compound is said to stop the growth of glycosphingolipids (GSLs), which are fats found in skin and cell membranes. Researchers found that mice eating rich and fatty foods were more likely to have skin inflammation, hair loss, and a change in hair pigment as well.

The researchers fed one group of mice ordinary food while the other group was given fed a "Western diet" full of cholesterol-rich foods. Those eating the fatty foods developed skin lesions, lost pigment in their hair, and shed hair as well. The longer they were on the diet, the more severe the results. In the group that continued eating this way for 36 weeks, 75 percent had severe side effects. They were then given the human-made compound that stops the production of GSLs and found that the hair loss and skin issues were reversed.

While this study does show great promise, Hopkins investigators warn that humans may not have the same results that the mice had. However, these findings do suggest that a medication may eventually hit the market to help thousands of people suffering from hair loss and skin conditions and that the type of foods you eat may play a role as well.


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4 Steps to Shedding Your Pandemic Pounds

Forgive yourself, and start walking toward a healthier you.

For those of you who have put on the Pandemic Pounds or added several new COVID Curves, you are not alone. Alarmingly, the American Psychological Association has recently published that almost half of all adults in their survey now have a larger physique. In fact, 42% of people reported gaining roughly 15 pounds (the average published was surprisingly 29 pounds but that included outliers) over the past year. Interestingly, 20% of adults in this survey lost about 12 pounds (I am surely not in this group). Clearly, there is a relationship between stress and weight change. In addition, one in four adults disclosed an increase in alcohol consumption, and 67% of participants distressingly revealed that they have new sleeping patterns.

This past year has brought about what has been called the 'new normal.' Social isolation and inactivity due to quarantining and remote working have sadly contributed to the decline in many people's mental and physical health, as demonstrated by the widespread changes in people's weight, alcohol consumption, and sleeping patterns. Gym closures, frequent ordering of unhealthy takeout, and increased time at home cooking and devouring comfort foods have had a perceptible impact. In addition, many people have delayed routine medical care and screening tests over fear of contracting Covid-19 during these visits. Unfortunately, the 'new normal' has now placed too many people at risk for serious health consequences, including heart attacks and strokes.

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