Health Buzz: Beer Linked to Psoriasis in Women

Only children catch up socially; 5 reasons never to skip breakfast.

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Beer Linked to Psoriasis in Women

And you thought that beer belly was a problem? How about dry scaly skin as a reward for downing brewskys? Women who drink beer regularly are more likely to develop psoriasis, an auto-immune disease that causes scaly lesions, redness, and inflammation of the skin, a new study suggests. Drinking at least five regular brews a week increases a woman's risk of psoriasis 2.3 times compared to non-drinkers, according to a study published Monday in the Archives of Dermatology. Researchers found no link, however, between psoriasis and other types of alcohol including light beer, wine, or spirits. The gluten-containing ingredient barley, used to ferment beer, could be to blame for the increased psoriasis risk, researchers say, since those with psoriasis are more sensitive to gluten than those without the disease.

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  • Yes, Only Children Do Lag in Social Skills—But They Catch Up

    Parents of only children fret that they miss out on peer interaction, and the evidence does suggest that kindergarteners who are only children have fewer social skills than kids with siblings who can teach them the rules (and help try them out). But Ohio State University researchers say that onlies overcome any social skill deficits by the time they reach high school and have just as many friends as their peers. An only child won't be doomed to a lonely adolescence, writes U.S. News contributor Nancy Shute.

    The researchers looked at 13,446 teenagers queried for the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health and asked them to name five male friends and five female friends. They then matched up the lists. The average teen was named five times, and only children were named as often as children with siblings. (The total range varied from 1 to 33.)

    "Over time, as children move from elementary school into junior high and high school, they've had more time for peer interaction," says Donna Bobbit-Zeher, an assistant professor of sociology at Ohio State University who presented the results of her research at the American Sociological Association meeting in Atlanta on Monday. "They're in clubs and groups, and they're having more interaction in school. Whatever benefits there are in having a sibling are mediated; there's a catch-up." [Read more: Yes, Only Children Do Lag in Social Skills—But They Catch Up.]

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    • 5 Reasons Never to Skip Breakfast

      Skipping that morning bowl of cereal may be a great way to cut calories, right? Probably not, according to research which suggests that a nutritious breakfast can play an important role in helping you manage your weight, increase your productivity, and lower your risk of heart disease and diabetes. Here's why:

      For one thing, you probably get more nutrients than with lunch or dinner, fitness blogger Chelsea Bush writes for U.S. News. Morning foods tend to provide a wallop of essential nutrients like fiber, protein, vitamins, and minerals—and often in a different variety than those found in lunch and dinner favorites. For example, it's fairly simple to get a hefty dose of fiber from whole-grain breakfast cereals and slow-cooked oatmeal. Fiber helps lower your cholesterol and protect your heart, according to the Mayo Clinic, and also aids digestion, helping the body absorb nutrients. A glass of calcium-fortified orange juice provides bone-building calcium and vitamin C. Smart breakfast choices include a high-fiber cereal, breads or oatmeal—look for at least 5 grams of fiber per serving. And don't forget to include a serving of protein with a little fat such as a hard-boiled egg, yogurt or nut butter since protein helps build muscles and bones, and fat will keep you feeling fuller longer. What to skip in the morning? Pop Tarts, sugary cereals and other breakfast choices packed with added sugar. The American Heart Association recommends that women get no more than 100 calories per day of added sugars, and men should not top 150 calories per day to keep heart disease and diabetes at bay. [Read more: 5 Reasons Never to Skip Breakfast.]