The evidence is seemingly in: USA Today reports on a new study that says laws curbing the sale of junk food and sugary drinks may slow the growth of child obesity. The effects of such laws weren't dramatic, and the study didn't prove a causal relationship, but the research indicates that laws are one tool that can at least somewhat effectively combat youngsters' obesity problem.
Researchers have found why, genetically speaking, certain brain regions in folks with major depression are smaller than their non-depressed counterparts. CBS News says the series of genes that controls cell-to-cell communication within the brain can be controlled by a genetic switch that appears to be overproduced in depressed people's brains; when that switch is activated, the "circuits normally involved in emotion, as well as cognition, are disrupted," according to one of the study's researchers.
U.S. News & World Report has news on a study that says toddlers who have a snoring habit are more likely than their peers who don't snore to have behavioral issues: hyperactivity, depression, attention issues. Researchers found that socioeconomic status, race and exposure to environmental smoke all made a kid's snoring persistently more likely. Conversely, kids who were breast-fed were far less likely to do it.
The number of DNA regions that have been linked to type 2 diabetes is now over 60, thanks to a team of researchers who recently discovered 10 new ones. The new data, which appears in Nature Genetics, will help medical professionals and researchers develop a better biological understanding of the disease, which could make drug development easier and more effective.
Babies whose moms are obese or overweight seem to grow more slowly than babies whose moms are a normal, healthy weight, says a new study. HealthDay says these infants were found to gain less fat mass, which is in fact crucial for proper brain growth and development.
Finally, if you've got a kid going into the 9th grade – or are yourself getting ready to start your freshman year of high school – it's important to make the transition as smooth as possible, researchers say, because the ninth-grade year often sets the tone for a student's entire high school career. HealthDay has tips on how to make the happen.
Photo by Ashish Joy via Flickr Creative Commons.