Feeling dizzy or lightheaded when you stand up may be a risk factor for stroke and dementia years down the road, a study reported. The condition, known as orthostatic hypotension, is caused by a sharp drop in blood pressure. Researchers collected data on 11,709 middle-age people, average age 54, without a history of coronary heart disease or stroke; 552 of them had the condition. The study in Neurology found that people with orthostatic hypotension had a 54 percent higher risk of dementia and more than double the risk of stroke. Feeling dizzy when you stand is not a reason for panic, but Dr. Rebecca F. Gottesman, a professor of neurology at Johns Hopkins, said that it may be a marker of vascular disease. If it happens regularly, a visit to the doctor is a good idea, she said.

Children shown photos of veggies ate more of them

If you want a child to eat more vegetables, it might help to use plates with pictures of vegetables. Researchers, testing 235 preschoolers, gave half the children a segmented plate with pictures of fruits and vegetables in the compartments. They told the children, who served themselves, that the pictures indicated where the foods were to be placed. The other half used white plates. After three days, they switched plates. Children using the plain plates ate 20.63 grams of vegetables — the equivalent of about three “baby” carrots — per meal. Those who used the illustrated plates consumed 28.17 grams.

Here’s why some respond well to exercise, others don’t

Ever wonder why some people get a big benefit from both aerobics and strength training while others seem to get an advantage from just one of the workouts? Researchers at Joslin Diabetes Center may have found the answer — one that could have implications for the treatment of Type 2 diabetes. In a study in the journal Nature Communications, researchers uncovered a molecular “switch” that occurs when a protein that helps to drive the body’s response to exercise, called c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK), is activated. “If the switch is on, you’ll have muscle growth,” said Sarah Lessard, lead author. “If it’s turned off, you have endurance adaptation in the muscle.” Researchers found that when the JNK biological pathway was turned on in lab mice, they would respond poorly to endurance training. When the production of the protein was knocked out, the mice had a higher increase in their aerobic exercise capacity as well as higher levels of blood vessels and a type of muscle fiber that would help with endurance. Tests on humans produced similar results.