Regular Fasting May Boost Heart Health. O.K. I was looking for an excuse to fast (save money, take off a few pounds, do something good for your heart). The latest from the New York Times: "Regular fasting may be good for your heart. That’s the finding of a new study from doctors in Utah who looked at the relationship between periodic fasting and cardiovascular disease. The researchers interviewed 200 patients who were undergoing a diagnostic test called angiography, an X-ray exam of the blood vessels and heart chambers that can determine if a person has coronary heart disease. The patients were asked if they engaged in regular fasting, and the researchers compared the answers to whether they eventually received a diagnosis of heart disease. Because about 90 percent of the patients were Mormons, a faith that encourages its members to fast for one day a month, the doctors expected to find a relatively high rate of regular fasting among the study participants. The researchers found that people who fasted regularly had a 58 percent lower risk of coronary disease compared with those who said they didn’t fast, according to the report presented at the American College of Cardiology conference in New Orleans this week."
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When scientists measure the different isotopes of carbon in the atmosphere today, they find that the relative amount of carbon-14 compared to carbon-12 is decreasing. Since fossil fuels have been buried in the earth for millions of years, all of the carbon-14 isotope has decayed. Thus when these fuels are combusted they release the stable form of carbon (carbon-12) into the air. These emissions dilute the levels of carbon-14 normally present, which tells us that the increased amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is coming from human activities."