Does being hungry make women feel less sexy?

Location of study: U.S.
 
Study subjects: College-aged women of normal weight
 
Results: In a new study out of Drexel University, researchers found that women with a reasonably full stomach responded better to romantic cues than women who were hungry. Using MRI imaging, researchers observed brain activity among habitual dieters versus non-dieters. When fed beforehand then shown romantic images, both groups’ reward centers in the brain lit up more than when they were shown these images while hungry. 
 
Significance: Investigators say the findings reinforce the idea that diverse rewards (think food, gambling, alcohol and sex) are interrelated.“[R]eceiving one type of reward might affect your response to another type,” says senior author Michael R. Lowe, Ph.D., a professor in the College of Arts and Sciences at Drexel University. “This may be due in part to the fact that different rewards overlap in the brain pathways they activate.”
 
 
Study subjects: Over 83,000 U.S. veterans with low testosterone
 
Location of study: U.S.
 
Results: One in four men over 30 currently has low testosterone (aka “low T”). A recent study suggests that those who opt for testosterone replace therapy (TRT) may inadvertently improve their heart health. Researchers found that men who'd undergone TRT were significantly more likely to live longer than men with low T who didn't receive therapy. They were also notably less likely to suffer a stroke or myocardial infarction (MI).
 
Significance: Corresponding author and cardiologist Dr. Rajat S. Barua says the findings are significant as previous research has suggested a potential link between increased cardiovascular risk and TRT. “Our study was born out of our own dilemma of what to say to our patients because there was conflicting news in the past few years,” he says.
 
 
Location of study: U.S.  
 
Study subjects: 140 women who'd been referred for a neurological consultation at Montefiore's Weiler Hospital
 
Results: Swollen feet, weight gain, fatigue and nausea are just a few of the most common hurdles women face during pregnancy. Also on the list are headaches, which experts warn shouldn’t automatically be dismissed as harmless. In fact, it could be the warning sign of an underlying condition. For the study, roughly 24 percent of participants with secondary headaches ended up having pregnancy-related high blood pressure. Of these women, 38 percent were found to have preeclampsia, which can cause premature labor in extreme cases.
 
Significance: “By and large, if a pregnant woman has a headache attack, it’s almost certainly not going to be from something scary,” says Matthew S. Robbins, M.D., director of inpatient services at Montefiore Headache Center in New York City. “But that being said, headache can represent a symptom of an underlying dangerous cause of some other condition that could be a pregnancy complication.”
 
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