Tag Archives: Science

A study that shows running may be good for your knees!


Science geek alert! Here’s some information about knees and running for you to muse over.

The other week I came across a really interesting article published in the European Journal of Applied Physiology that showed running appears to reduce inflammation in knee joints and may be beneficial for long-term joint health.

That’s right, running might actually keep your knees healthy.

Researchers from Brigham Young University in Utah measured inflammatory markers in synovial fluid taken from the knee joints of six healthy people before and after running for 30 minutes.

Specifically, they measured the concentration of two proteins (GM-CSF and IL-15) that indicate the presence of inflammation and have been associated with the development of joint disease.

They found that levels of both proteins went down after 30 minutes of running, suggesting a decrease in inflammation in the joint. The researchers also performed a control test, taking fluid samples before and after a 30 minute seated rest. During that test, protein levels did not change.

The study was very small: samples were taken from only six participants. But the researchers felt the study was valuable because it’s the first to measure these inflammatory markers in the knees of healthy people before and after exercise. In that sense it’s groundbreaking.

So the concern that running is bad for our knees is getting more and more to be an old wives tale.

Here’s the link to the article on Pubmed.

Eur J Appl Physiol (2016) 116:2305-2314

Enjoy the rest of your weekend! Happy, healthy running 🙂



Zika and the Olympics

This post is a resurrection of my blog’s “Science” (Geek) category. It’s loosely related to running!

So, drinking my tea today and browsing some medical sites, I found myself perusing the news article headlines in the British Medical Journal. A headline-“Sixty seconds on…..Zika at the Olympics” caught my eye.

This topical subject is of interest to many and I thought I would share some facts from this interesting wee article.

  • Infectious disease specialists estimate that 3 to 37 of the 500 000 people travelling to Rio for the Olympic and Paralympic Games will take the Zika virus back to their home countries.
  • Zika is transmitted by mosquitos, by sex and from pregnant women to their foetus. Prevention means avoiding mosquito bites in the usual manner (covering yourself, bed nets, DEET etc), practicing safe sex and avoiding conception during the games and for 8 weeks after.
  • Advice is to take small bottles of insect repellant if you’re going to the games. Olympic venues will have airport-style security with limits on the volume of liquids allowed in.
  • The big one. Don’t go to Rio if you are pregnant or planning to conceive in the near future.
  • Recent research suggested that malaria transmitting mosquitos actively avoid chickens; some people say you might try having a chicken next to your bed to prevent mosquito bites! That was news to me. Here’s the link to that particular article.

Zika’s scary if you are pregnant but if that’s not you then be reassured: food poisoning is more likely to inflict you in Brazil than contracting Zika.

Have a great weekend!