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Ratings for eco-friendly fish

Monterey Bay (California) Aquarium's Seafood Watch program just updated its recommendations and pocket guides for 2010 in order to provide consumers with the best recommendations for ocean-friendly dining. Their "Best" choices include seafood that's abundant, well-managed, and caught or farmed in eco-friendly ways.

The seafood awarded the "Best of the Best" honors, which takes into consideration low levels of contaminants and rich sources of omega-3 fatty acids, includes: albacore tuna (troll- or pole-caught, United States or British Columbia), freshwater Coho salmon (farmed in tank systems, United States), mussels (farmed), oysters (farmed), Pacific sardines (wild-caught), pink shrimp (wild-caught, Oregon), rainbow trout (farmed), and salmon (wild-caught, Alaska). You can download a free Seafood Watch pocket guide or iTune App at www.montereybayaquarium.org.

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More on mammograms

The mammography controversy has ignited again, with a new study finding that mammograms frequently result in false positives when used to screen women under age 40, Reuters reports. In the study of more than 117,000 women ages 18 to 39, researchers found that mammography often detects lesions that are not cancerous, but require follow-up testing. Follow-up testing is associated with harms such as radiation exposure, the researchers noted.

In women ages 35 to 39, 12.7 per 1,000 required a follow-up test after their initial mammogram. But few lesions detected by mammograms were cancerous in this group, according to Reuters. The results were published in May in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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Coffee to prevent diabetes?

Attention coffee lovers! That habit may not be so bad.

Drinking coffee, a lot of it, may help prevent type 2 diabetes, a disease affecting millions and is on the rise across the globe, according to a new study published in the American Chemical Society's Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry.

It's the caffeine, say scientists from Nagoya University in Japan.

The scientists fed either water or coffee to a group of lab mice, a common stand-in for people in such studies. The coffee consumption prevented development of high-blood sugar and improved insulin sensitivity in the mice. That means lower risk of diabetes.

There were also other benefits from drinking coffee, including improvements in fatty liver, which is a disorder where fat builds up in liver cells, primarily in obese people. That further reduces the risk of diabetes, the scientists said.

Other studies in the lab showed that caffeine may be "one of the most effective anti-diabetic compounds in coffee," according to the scientists.

Keep sipping; there's more study to come.

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Alcohol and Alzheimer's

A new study suggests that drinking alcohol in moderation may provide some protection against Alzheimer's disease. Researchers in Spain examined the impact that cigarettes and alcohol had on Alzheimer's disease risk, HealthDay reports. Though smoking by itself did not appear to affect risk, the team found that moderate drinking -- especially in nonsmoking women -- was associated with a reduced risk of the disease.

In September, U.S. News offered ways to lower the odds of developing Alzheimer's disease. While genes influence the risk of developing Alzheimer's or other forms of dementia, they "are not even the dominant factor" for the vast majority of people, according to Paul Thompson, professor of neurology at the University of California Los Angeles School of Medicine.

There is a rare genetic scenario that appears to guarantee dementia, he said. But for everyone else, Thompson explained, science knows several factors that help keep brains healthy and build up reserves that will compensate as certain areas become diminished through normal aging.

Compiled from News wire sources

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