• By Laurel J. Kelly

Housecall: Nuts and heart health

December 25, 2017

trail mix spilled out onto a wooden surface, including a variety of nuts and dried fruitsTHIS WEEK'S TOP STORIES
Nuts and your healthy heart 
Eating nuts as part of a healthy diet may be good for your heart. One way nuts may help your heart health is by lowering the low-density lipoprotein (LDL, or "bad") cholesterol level, which plays a major role in the development of plaque that builds up on the blood vessels. Eating more nuts also has been linked to lower levels of inflammation linked to heart disease. And they're a great snack food — easy to store and easy to pack when you're on the go. See how adding them to your diet may help your heart.

DHEA: Evidence for anti-aging claims is weak
A synthetic version of the hormone dehydroepiandrosterone, also known as DHEA, often is touted as an anti-aging therapy. It is used to ward off chronic illness and improve physical performance. However, most research doesn't back up these claims. Also, the long-term safety of DHEA use hasn't been established. There are concerns that using DHEA as a supplement might increase the risk of hormone-sensitive cancers, including prostate, breast and ovarian cancers. Here's what you need to know.

EXPERT ANSWERS
What's the difference between scalp psoriasis and seborrheic dermatitis?
Scalp psoriasis and seborrheic dermatitis are common conditions that affect the scalp. They share some similar signs and symptoms, such as red, scaly skin. They also share some similar treatments, including medicated shampoos and topical corticosteroid or antifungal solutions. Learn more from Dr. Lawrence Gibson, a Mayo Clinic dermatologist.

Are walking poles good for brisk walking?
Walking poles work the muscles of your arms, shoulders, chest and upper back through a functional range of motion as you walk — which can help you turn your daily walk into a full-body workout. Learn more from Dr. Edward Laskowski, a Mayo Clinic physical medicine specialist and co-director of the Mayo Clinic Sports Medicine Center.

PLUS ADDITIONAL HIGHLIGHTS
Slideshow: How your brain works
Testicular self-exam
First aid for bruises
Video: Preventing kidney stones

HEALTHY RECIPES
Vegetarian chili
Roasted winter squash with wild rice and cranberries
Beef brisket
Cheese latkes

HEALTH TIP OF THE WEEK
Perfect holiday? Forget about it!
Adding extensive preparations, such as shopping, baking and entertaining, to your usual daily demands can take the joy out of the holidays. Instead, consider scaling back. Focus on the holiday traditions you enjoy most, and skip the rest. Accept imperfections in yourself and in others. Embrace the holiday season with peace and good cheer.

Need practical advice on diet and exercise? Want creative solutions for stress and other lifestyle issues? Discover more healthy lifestyle topics at mayoclinic.org.

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