Health News Roundup for March 29 - April 4

Score! Video gamers may learn visual tasks more quickly

"Many studies show that video gamers perform better than non-gamers on certain visual tasks, like managing distractors and identifying targets, but a small new Brown University study provides gamers with some cognitive bonus points. The study results suggest that gaming not only improves their visual skill but also may improve their learning ability for those skills." (Read more at Science Daily.com.)

Foods You Should Be Eating Instead of Taking Vitamins

"The supplement chain GNC announced on Monday that it plans to overhaul its quality control systems with new high-tech testing. The move comes after an investigation by the New York Attorney General that revealed the quality of supplements is highly variable, and many pills do not contain the ingredients they say they do or contain other ingredients that may not be on the label." (Read more at Time.com.)

7 Green Superfoods You Absolutely Should Be Eating

"Go green in a totally new area: your diet.

There was probably a time in life when most green foods—Brussels sprouts, broccoli, spinach, to name a few—repulsed you. You definitely weren't alone. Many children are hesitant to pile green vegetables onto their plates. One possible explanation could be that green foods, such as Brussels sprouts, tend to be bitter, a sensation that your survival instinct tells you to avoid. Plus, children have a lot of sensitive taste buds. But as you grew up, you held on to fewer taste buds, slightly dulling the sense. Another possibility: You knew that naturally green foods (not to be confused with green Kool-Aid) were associated with the aim of eating healthier, and research suggests that children may be less likely to enjoy foods linked with goals." (Read more at Real Simple.com.)

This Everyday Activity May Raise Your Child's Blood Pressure

"We already know that too much screen time is bad for our health: Studies have shown that watching TV and reading e-books can cut into our sleep. Plus, phones can hurt our posture, balance, and even relationships. But now, new research suggests that children who spend too many hours parked in front of a screen may be at risk for developing high blood pressure.

Researchers from the Universities of Zaragoza and São Paulo took data from more than 16,000 children between the ages of two and nine. They examined their blood pressure and TV-watching habits, and found that those who watched more than two hours daily saw a rise in blood pressure after just two years. The study, published in the International Journal of Cardiology, concluded that patterns of sedentary behavior (think watching TV, playing video games, or surfing the web for hours) may increase the risk of high blood pressure in children by 30 percent." (Read more at Real Simple.com.)

Night Owls at Higher Risk of Diabetes, Other Illnesses

"Night owls may enjoy staying up late, but their belated bedtimes may be a detriment to their health in middle age, a new study finds. People with late bedtimes are more likely to develop diabetes and other health problems than early birds, the researchers found.

Moreover, the health risks stayed the same even for night owls who got the same amount of sleep as early risers, according to the study, published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism." (Read more at Live Science.com.)

1,000-Year-Old Onion and Garlic Eye Remedy Kills MRSA

" A 1,000-year-old treatment for eye infections could hold the key to killing antibiotic-ressitant superbugs, experts have said.

Scientists recreated a 9th Century Anglo-Saxon remedy using onion, garlic and part of a cow's stomach. They were "astonished" to find it almost completely wiped out methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus, otherwise known as MRSA. Their findings will be presented at a national microbiology conference.

The remedy was found in Bald's Leechbook - an old English manuscript containing instructions on various treatments held in the British Library." (Read more at bbc.com.)