August 14: Weekly Health Roundup

Aspartame-Free Diet Pepsi Hits Shelves

Pepsi has just release an aspartame-free Diet Pepsi in response to what they saw as a call from consumers to banish the often controversial additive. There are concerns about the switch, which will affect Diet Pepsi, Caffeine Free Diet Pepsi and Wild Cherry Diet Pepsi. Advocacy group leader Michael Jacobson said the replacement (ace-k) is “poorly tested” and the tests available suggest that ace-K might pose a risk for cancer as well, via USA Today

Southern Diet Linked to Big Increase in Heart Disease

This one might not be a huge surprise, but the southern diet – chock full of fried chicken, sweet tea and fried veggies – might not be the best for the hearts of those in the south. In fact, eating a Southern-style diet regularly was linked to “a 56 percent increased risk for heart attack”. It is important to note that the study wasn’t “designed to prove a cause-and-effect relationship between these foods and heart disease, only an association”, via CBS News

Does One Diet Really Burn More Fat?

A study recently found that diets low in fat seem to lead to better results than diets low in carbohydrates. While both types of diets trigger “a decrease in insulin levels”, the low-fat diet burns more fat overall. The study also found that “[total] calories are the primary driver of fat loss”, via CBS News

The Power of Music

Listening to music before, during and after surgery “reduces anxiety and the need for painkillers”, so says a study published this past Wednesday. Not just by a little bit either; participants in the study found their pain levels lowered two levels when measured from one to ten. Researchers hope this study “will shift misperceptions and highlight the positive impact music can have”, via The Daily Star

President Carter Fighting Cancer

At the age of 90, former President Carter announced Wednesday that he has been diagnosed with cancer an will start receiving treatment soon. After leaving office in 1981, carter has spent his time working with Habitat for Humanity, mediating disputes around the world and publishing 27 books. Here’s to a smooth treatment process and a speedy recover, President Carter, via LA Times

Time to Weigh In

Would you try out the new aspartame-free Diet Pepsi products or do the addition of the untested additive “ace-K” make you nervous? Do you agree with the notion that a southern-style diet can lead to heart disease, or are you unconvinced? Speaking of diets, which do you think leads to better results – a low-fat diet or one low in carbohydrates? Share your thoughts below – we love to hear what you guys have to say!