Health updates: Soda fountains and memory loss

February 26, 2012

Food, Health, Meat

The following is new information regarding the sanitary conditions of fast food restaurant soda fountains and reversing memory loss with physical exercise.

Fecal bacteria found in nearly half of fast food soda fountains

A recent study has revealed that a full 48 percent of soda fountains at fast food restaurants contain coliform bacteria — a bacteria that grows in feces. It was also found that 11 percent contained E. Coli, as well. Other opportunistic pathogenic microorganisms found included Chryseobacterium meningosepticum and of Klebsiella, Staphylococcus, Stenotrophomonas, Candida and Serratia. Most of the identified bacteria showed resistance to one or more of 11 antibiotics tested.

While there have been few certified outbreaks related to soda fountains in the last 10 years, many incidents of food poisoning go unreported. According to the CDC, of the 76 million food poisoning cases reported, there are about 325,000 hospitalizations and 5,000 deaths. But these are the most severe and tend to represent the very old, the very young and those with compromised immune systems.

Memory loss can be reversed

Memory loss can make you five to seven times more likely to get dementia. But clinical trials have proven that a fading memory is not inevitable and can be conquered without drugs. Moderate physical activity performed in midlife or later appears to be associated with a reduced risk of mild cognitive impairment — and a six-month high-intensity aerobic exercise program can improve cognitive function in individuals who already have the condition.

Each year, 10 percent to 15 percent of individuals with mild cognitive impairment will develop dementia, as compared with 1 percent to 2 percent of the general population. Physical exercise may protect against mild cognitive impairment by producing nerve-protecting compounds, greater blood flow to the brain, improved development, survival of neurons and the decreased risk of heart and blood vessel diseases.


Sources: Treehugger January 7, 2010, Int J Food Micro 2009, Eurekalert January 11, 2010, Archives of Neurology January 2010;67(1):71-9, Archives of Neurology January 2010;67(1):80-6 and

Reprinted from AzNetNews, Volume 29, Number 2, Apr/May 2010.


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