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Relaxation makes worriers more anxious

Some people become more anxious as they attempt to relax because relaxing interrupts their worrying, according to new research. Although the intent of relaxation exercises is to reduce anxiety, for some people, they have the opposite effect. A new study concludes that, in these people, relaxation conflicts with a strategy that they employ to lessen the impact of negative events: continual worrying. The authors of the study were Michelle Newman, a professor of psychology, and Hanjoo Kim, a graduate student in psychology, both at Penn State University, in College Park, PA. The team summarized their findings in a paper that appears in the December issue of the Journal of Affective Disorders. The insights presented in the study suggest that people living with generalized anxiety disorder may benefit from follow-on research. Kim suspects that "Measuring relaxation-induced anxiety and implementing exposure techniques targeting the desensitization of negative contrast sensitivity may help patients reduce this anxiety." In addition, notes Prof. Newman, "Mindfulness training and other interventions can help people let go and live in the moment." (Credits: www.medicalnewstoday.com)

Vitamins B-6 and B-12 linked with increased risk of hip fracture

Vitamins are essential for good health, but consuming too much of certain vitamins can be damaging. A recent study explored B vitamin intake and the risk of hip fracture. Vitamin and mineral supplements are becoming increasingly popular in the United States. According to one study, 52% of U.S. adults used supplements of some kind in 2011–2012. Although there is no doubt that some people need to take supplements, there is a growing concern that many people are taking more than they should. As the authors of the new study explain, "Both insufficient and excess intakes of a nutrient may be harmful." In this study, the researchers were particularly interested in vitamins B-6 and B-12. Both carry out a wide array of roles in the body and occur in a range of foods. For many healthy people, it is fairly easy to consume adequate amounts of vitamins B-6 and B-12 from a balanced, varied diet. Scientists will need to carry out more research to prove the relationship. With that said, the authors conclude: "Although we acknowledge the limitations of our cohort design, the findings herein add to the body of literature that suggests caution should be used in vitamin supplementation when there is no apparent deficiency." (Credits: www.medicalnewstoday.com)