Can beetroot make runners unbeatable?

It seems a most unlikely performance booster but new research suggests beetroot could be the secret to track success at this year’s Olympics.
Scientists have discovered athletes who eat baked beetroot before a race run faster than their rivals. The purple root vegetable contains high levels of chemicals called nitrates, which have been shown to boost exercise performance.
Researchers at St Louis University in the US recruited 11 fit and healthy men and women and got them to twice run five kilometres on a treadmill.
Before the first run, the volunteers consumed a portion of baked beetroot just over an hour before hitting the treadmill. Before the second run, they ate an equivalent amount of cranberry relish, chosen because it has a similar calorific content to beetroot but without the same nitrate levels.

Source  - Daily Mail

Could a bunch of watercress provide the ultimate boost before a workout?

It is not normally thought of as an energy food. But watercress could give you the boost you need before going to the gym.
Nutrients in the peppery leaves reduce exercise-related damage to DNA, research shows.
While exercise has many benefits, it also leads to higher-than-usual production of free radicals - dangerous oxygen molecules said to have a hand in everything from ageing to diabetes and cancer.
Watercress, it seems, is particularly rich in antioxidant chemicals that mop up these free radicals. Eaten ahead of exercise, it keeps DNA damage at bay.
Sports scientists from Edinburgh Napier University took blood samples from ten healthy young men and asked them to eat a small bag of watercress a day for eight weeks. They then put them through their paces on a treadmill, by making them run fairly quickly while gradually increasing the gradient.

Source  - Daily Mail

How DAYLIGHT could reduce the risk of having a heart attack

Forget CPR, aspirin and blood clot busters - treating a heart attack victim could be as simple as exposing them to light.
Doctors say strong light or even just daylight could cut the risk of having a heart attack or suffering permanent damage after having one. They say that heart attack victims could recover quicker in hospital simply by being exposed to daylight. Experts say the answer lies in the body’s clock, or circadian rhythm, that is linked to light and dark.
The circadian clock is regulated by proteins in the brain. But the same proteins are also in the heart.
Heart expert Tobias Eckle, from the University of Colorado, Denver, and colleagues found that one of the proteins link to the body’s clock - called Period 2 - plays a vital role in fending off damage from a heart attack.

Source  - Daily Mail

How to live to a ripe old age

Eating blueberries and strawberries may stave off mental decline in later life, claim researchers.
They found brain ageing could be delayed by up to two and a half years in elderly women regularly eating high amounts of the berries. The findings come from an ongoing study of nurses which involves only women, but may also apply to men.
Experts believe the benefits are derived from the high content of flavonoids in berry fruits, antioxidant compounds found in plants which can protect against a wide range of diseases.
The US research team used data from the Nurses’ Health Study, involving 121,700 female, registered nurses between the ages of 30 and 55 who completed health and lifestyle questionnaires beginning in 1976. Since 1980 participants were surveyed every four years regarding their frequency of food consumption.
Between 1995 and 2001, cognitive function was measured in 16,010 women over the age of 70 years, at 2-year intervals, says a report in the Annals of Neurology journal.
The findings suggest increased consumption of blueberries and strawberries slows cognitive decline in older women.

Source  - Daily Mail

Mobile phones: 'Still no evidence of harm to health'

There is still no evidence mobile phones harm human health, says a major safety review for the UK's Health Protection Agency (HPA).
Scientists looked at hundreds of studies of mobile exposure and found no conclusive links to cancer risk, brain function or infertility. However, they said monitoring should continue because little was known about long-term effects. The HPA said children should still avoid excessive use of mobiles. It is the biggest ever review of the evidence surrounding the safety of mobile phones.
There are now an estimated 80 million mobiles in the UK, and because of TV and radio broadcasting, Wi-Fi, and other technological developments, the study said exposure to low-level radio frequency fields was almost universal and continuous. A group of experts working for the HPA looked at all significant research into the effects of low-level radio frequency.

Source  - BBC

Avocados 'can help keep you young'

Avocados could be a weapon in the fight against ageing and disease, say scientists.
Oil from the fruit was shown in tests to combat free radicals – dangerous molecules said to have a hand in everything from ageing to heart disease and cancer.
These are particularly common inside mitochondria, the tiny powerhouses in our cells that turn the food we eat into energy.
Many ‘antioxidant’ chemicals in vegetables and fruits such as carrots and tomatoes can mop up free radicals – but they can’t make their way inside mitochondria.

Source  -Daily Mail

Soya milk 'protects the liver' from dangerous build-up of fat

Soya milk is not just good for those who are lactose intolerant - researchers have
Scientists in the US compared the livers of lean and obese rats fed a diet containing either milk or soy protein.
No differences were seen in lean animals. But obese rats fed soy showed a 20 per cent reduction in overall levels of fat accumulation in the liver.
Triglycerides, a type of fat known to be harmful to the heart, were reduced by the same level. This means soya could protect against 'fatty liver disease', a condition linked to obesity that can lead to liver failure.
Study leader Dr Hong Chen, from the University of Illinois, said: 'Almost a third of American adults have fatty liver disease, many of them without symptoms. Obesity is a key risk factor for this condition, which can lead to liver failure.

Source  - Daily Mail

Think the drugs your GP gives you are safe?

We are all swallowing an increasing number of pills, not just to treat disease but to cut the risk of getting a disease in the first place. Even in a time of austerity the NHS is spending nearly £12 billion on drugs and the total keeps rising.
People believe the drugs are effective and safe because they have all been properly tested in clinical trials. But this is a dangerous delusion.
Failures in our system for testing drugs mean not only are drugs often no better than a placebo, but, at worst, they end up damaging the health of tens of thousands of Britons every year. Pharmaceutical companies spend billions conducting trials to come up with evidence for the benefits of drugs, but they have a number of ways of making small benefits look impressive.

Source  - Daily Mail

Oregano seasoning could be a powerful weapon against prostate cancer

It may not be the most obvious of health foods, but pizza could be good for you, research suggests.
Scientists have found that oregano, a seasoning commonly used in pizza and other Italian food, has the potential to become a powerful weapon against prostate cancer.
A medicine inspired by it could have  fewer side-effects than existing treatments, which can cause problems from incontinence to impotence. Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in British men, affecting 37,000 a year and killing more than 10,000.
Researchers from Long Island University, New York, studied carvacrol, a chemical in oregano. Added to prostate cancer cells in the lab, it rapidly wiped them out.  Left for four days, almost all the cells were killed, the Experimental Biology conference in San Diego heard.  Tests showed it triggered the cells to kill themselves. 

Source  - Daily Mail 

Can meditation make you a better runner?

Recently, I've been training for the Edinburgh half-marathon. But instead of seeking advice from the usual quarters, I've been taking tips from a Tibetan meditation master. In just a short time, following his advice has changed how I think about two things I've been doing for some years now: running  and meditating. Rather than being separate activities, I'm starting to see they have surprising amounts in common. And it's made me newly excited about both.
The advice comes from a new book called Running with the Mind of Meditation by Sakyong Mipham. The Sakyong ('King' or 'Earth protector' in Tibetan) is one of the highest lamas in Tibet and a celebrated teacher who leads the international Shambhala network of meditation centres, including a vibrant London outpost. He also happens to be mad about sport. His previous books on meditation have drawn on his love of golf, horse-riding and weight-lifting to explain the wisdom of ancient meditation texts. In researching this new book, the Sakyong ran nine marathons in six years. Not bad for someone turning 50 soon – although he looks about 20 years younger.

Source  - Guardian

Does music help you to run faster?

Music is a legal drug for athletes," claims Dr Costas Karageorghis  an expert on the effects of music on exercise, at Brunel University. In his latest book, Inside Sport Psychology, he claims that listening to music while running can boost performance by up to 15%.
If this is true, then the Rock'n'Roll marathon series is on to something. The events, a fixture in the US for almost 15 years, are extremely popular, with 450,000 people running in one of its 2012 races alone. Many other big city races have the occasional band along the route, and London has had the Run to the Beat half-marathon, lined with DJs, for the past five years. But on 15 April the UK finally got its first taste of the action, with the inaugural Edinburgh Rock'n'Roll half-marathon.
As I lined up at the start with almost 4,000 other runners, we were serenaded by Edinburgh's Got Talent winner Caitlyn Vanbeck. and may explain why I shot off at the front, following the lead car around the first few bends.

Source  - Guardian

Fasting: the fast track to recovery?

By the end of last year my body and brain were in slow-motion freefall. In October a bad cold turned into a hacking cough and low-grade fever that wouldn’t go away. Not quite ill enough to take time off work, but far too zonked to do the physical exercise on which my sanity depends, soon I was in a position to confirm a medical fact that doctors never mention: a bottle of wine during the course of an evening makes you forget how bad you felt all day. Unfortunately that sort of self-medication also leads to a paunch, and sleepless nights followed by mornings that have to be got through in a state of exhaustion.
So I resorted to antibiotics and an inhaler. I was also taking anti-inflammatory drugs for my now chronically stiff neck and shoulders. Deadlines loomed, and then passed. As one article went to press, galleys from another appeared in my in-box. Either I could find no time to read for pleasure or after the first page fell asleep. Films I hoped to see came and went.
Then I snapped.

Source  - Telegraph

Anti-ageing properties in avocado oil

Avocado oil may have anti-ageing properties like those attributed to olive oil, say researchers.
Fat pressed from the fruit could be a potent weapon against conditions such as heart disease and cancer, a team of scientists from Mexico found.
Presenting their findings at a meeting of the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in San Diego, California, they said avocado could combat rogue oxygen molecules which trigger destructive chemical reactions in cells.

Being beside the seaside can make us feel better, says new study

Psychological benefits may be the reason why so many people like to be beside the seaside.

A study has found that a walk on a beach has more impact on emotional well-being than a stroll in the park.
Researchers looked at data from 2,750 participants in a two-year study of people's engagement with the natural environment. All outdoor locations were associated with positive feelings of enjoyment, calmness and refreshment. But visits to the coast were the most beneficial, while urban parks had the least effect.
The trend remained after taking account of factors such as age, distance of travel, the presence of others, and type of activity.
Mathew White, from the European Centre for Environment and Human Health in Truro, Cornwall, said: "There is a lot of work on the beneficial effects of visiting natural environments, but our findings suggest it is time to move beyond a simple 'urban versus rural' debate and start looking at the effect that different natural environments have on people's health and well-being."
The research was presented today at the British Psychological Society's annual meeting in London.

Source  - Independent

Drinking water improves exam grades, research suggests

Students who bring water into the examination hall may improve their grades, a study of 447 people found.
Controlling for ability from previous coursework results, researchers found those with water scored an average of 5% higher than those without.
The study, from the universities of East London and Westminster, also noted that older students were more likely to bring in water to exam halls. It says the findings have implications for exam policies on access to drinks.
The researchers observed 447 psychology students at the University of East London - 71 were in their foundation year, 225 were first-years and 151 were in their second year. Just 25% of the 447 students entered the exam hall with a bottle of water. Of these, the more mature students (those in their second year of degree study) were more likely to bring in water - 31% did so compared with 21% of foundation year and first-year students.
After taking students' academic ability into account, by examining coursework grades, the researchers found foundation students who drank water could expect to see grades improved by up to 10%. This improvement was 5% for first-year students and 2% for second years. Across the cohort, the improvement in marks was 4.8% for water-drinking exam candidates.
The research paper said information about the importance of staying hydrated during exams should be targeted at younger students in particular.

Source  - BBC

Curry spice 'lowers risk of heart attack after surgery'

The curry spice turmeric may help ward off heart attacks in people who have had recent bypass surgery, according to a study. Curcimins - the yellow pigment in turmeric -  is known for having antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
Bypass surgery is performed to improve the blood supply to the heart muscle. However, during the operation the organ can be damaged by prolonged lack of blood flow, increasing the patient's risk of heart attack.  The new findings suggest that curcumins may ease those risks when added to traditional drug treatment.
The results need to be confirmed in further research, said Wanwarang Wongcharoen from Chiang Mai University in Thailand. Turmeric extracts have long been used in traditional Chinese and Indian medicine.

Source  - Daily Mail

Walking could be a useful tool in treating depression

Something as simple as going for a brisk stroll could play an important role in fighting depression, according to researchers in Scotland.
Vigorous exercise has already been shown to alleviate symptoms of depression, but the effect of less strenuous activities was unclear.
A study in the journal Mental Health and Physical Activity showed walking had a "large effect" on depression.
One in 10 people may have depression at some point in their lives. The condition can be treated with drugs, but exercise is commonly prescribed by doctors for mild symptoms.
Researchers at the University of Stirling scoured academic studies to find data on one of the mildest forms of exercise - walking. They found eight studies, on a total of 341 patients, which fitted the bill.

Source - BBC

Eating nuts can help stave off obesity, says study

Dieters often dismiss them because of their high fat content, but research suggests that snacking on nuts can help keep you slim.
A study found that those who consumed varieties such as almonds, cashews and pistachios demonstrated a lower body weight, body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference compared to non-consumers.  They were also at lower risk of developing heart disease, type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome.
Experts are now recommending a daily intake of 1.5 ounces, or three tablespoons of nuts as part of a healthy diet.
Lead researcher Carol O'Neil, from Louisiana State University, said: 'One of the more interesting findings was the fact that tree nut consumers had lower body weight, as well as lower body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference compared to non-consumers. '

Source  - Daily Mail

How a glass of red wine could PREVENT you from putting on weight

If you want to avoid gaining weight, it may be time to ditch the skipping rope and grab  a corkscrew instead.
For U.S. experts have found a compound in red wine that can help control obesity.
The substance, piceatannol, delays the generation of young fat cells and prevents them from growing into mature ones. It is also thought to protect the body from heart and neurodegenerative diseases, as well  as cancer.
The compound blocks insulin’s ability to activate genes that carry out further stages of fat cell formation. The agent found in wine is also thought to protect the body from heart and neurodegenerative diseases and cancer.
The ground breaking research was carried out at Purdue University, Indiana, USA.

Source  - Daily Mail

Fears raised over safety of Chinese medicine ingredients

DNA testing of traditional Chinese medicines has shown that many contain traces of endangered animals.

Scientists who analysed 15 samples of powders, pills, capsules and herbal teas found "multiple" examples of banned animal ingredients.
Some of the samples also contained potentially toxic plant compounds and allergy triggers. The traditional Chinese medicines (TCMs) studied were among products seized by Australian border officials.
Dr Michael Bunce, from Murdoch University in Western Australia, said: "In total we found 68 different plant families in the medicines - they are complex mixtures of species. Some of the TCMs contained plants of the genus Ephedra and Asarum. These plants contain chemicals that can be toxic if the wrong dosage is taken, but none of them actually listed concentrations on the packaging.
"We also found traces from trade-restricted animals that are classified as vulnerable, endangered or critically endangered, including the Asiatic black bear and Saiga antelope."
Until now it has been difficult to determine the biological origins of TCMs processed into pills and powders.
The new research, published in the online journal Public Library of Science Genetics, used high-throughput DNA sequencing to unravel the complex mixtures of plant and animal ingredients.

Beetroot emerges as nature's performance enhancer

If you see an athlete with purple stains on their lips during this summer's Olympics, they may be taking the latest performance enhancer – beetroot.

A soon-to-be-published study of climbers in the Alps who were given beetroot juice to drink is expected to show that it boosted the efficiency in which their bodies used oxygen. The study is part of a series investigating the effects of altitude on the body which leads to oxygen deprivation similar to that experienced by patients suffering from critical illness.
Researchers from the Centre for Altitude, Space and Extreme Environment Medicine (Case) at University College, London, say the insights they have gained from studying elite climbers are helping to improve treatment of patients in intensive care.
Blood samples taken at the top of Everest showed some of the climbers had blood oxygen levels so low they were previously thought to be incompatible with life. Now, in a £1m study over five years, funded by the National Institute for Health Research, experts will examine these "good adaptors" (to altitude) for biomarkers in their blood that could help identify patients able to tolerate low levels of oxygen.

Source  - Independent

Slim down naturally with mindful eating

My mum (and my granny) used to tell my sister and I as children to chew each mouthful 20 times, slowly, to enjoy the taste of our food.
This old fashioned idea of eating has a lot in common with the Buddhist discipline, which encourages eating slowly, and sometimes silently for health and tranquillity. What my mum (and incidentally Buddhism) was attempting to do was to break the habit of wolfing down our food. Instead patiently chew, pause, put down the knife and fork between mouthfuls, take a sip of water, appreciate the flavours, don’t talk (with your mouth full) and certainly don’t spoil the ritual of enjoying food by watching TV at the same time.
Think about the food in your mouth. Examine the flavours. Feel the textures. If you roll the food around your mouth you experience each bite more intensely and more pleasurably.
Welcome to “mindful eating”, the kind that stops you eating too much, too quickly and consuming too many calories, not giving your appetite time to switch off.
With the pace of life speeding up and our speed of eating with it, a nutritionist from Harvard University is advocating mindful eating as a way of stopping you short, asking yourself questions like: Why am I eating this? Do I really need this? Do I feel full yet? Am I eating out of unhappiness? Or because I’m depressed? Eating thoughtfully means we soon realise we don’t need to eat so fast or so much, and that we feel fuller sooner. We give our brains time to tell the stomach we’ve eaten enough.

Source  - Daily Mirror

Are modern British children suffering from 'nature deficit disorder'?

We human beings need to stay in touch with nature for our own sakes – many a study shows how much better people feel when in sight of trees. Yet even more to the point, nature itself needs us to stay in touch. Many politicians and scientists have told us that we can and should "conquer" nature, and have called this "progress". In reality, nature will always be beyond our ken and way beyond our control, except here and there – but we do have the power to destroy vast swathes of it. In the end, the fate of all our fellow creatures and their habitats depends largely on our attitude towards them. But also whether or not we ourselves survive, and in what numbers and in what state, depends on how well we look after the rest. For our sake as well as theirs we need to give a damn.

Source  - Guardian

Why I changed my mind about homeopathy

Homeopathy has intrigued me for many years; in a way, I grew up with it. Our family doctor was a homeopath, and my very first job as a junior doctor, was in a German homeopathic hospital. For the last two decades, I have investigated homeopathy scientifically. During this period, the evidence has become more and more negative, and it is now quite clear that highly diluted homeopathic remedies are pure placebos.
Two main axioms constitute the core principles of homeopathy. The "like cures like" principle holds that, if a substance causes a symptom (e.g. onion makes my nose run), then that substance can cure a disease that is characterised by a runny nose (e.g. hayfever or a common cold). The second principle assumes that the serial dilution process used for homeopathic remedies renders them not less but more potent (hence homeopaths call this process "potentiation").
Both of these axioms fly in the face of science. If they were true, much of what we learned in physics and chemistry would be wrong. If anyone shows the concepts of homeopathy to be correct, he or she becomes a serious contender for one or two Nobel prizes. Homeopaths often say that we simply have not yet discovered how homeopathy works. The truth is that we know there is no conceivable scientific explanation that could possibly explain it.
Yet as a clinician almost 30 years ago, I was impressed with the results achieved by homeopathy. Many of my patients seemed to improve dramatically after receiving homeopathic treatment. How was this possible?

Source  - Guardian

Eating almonds could aid dieting

Almonds are considered healthy because they are low on the glycemic index, which measures how quickly they cause blood sugar levels to rise after eating.
While foods which are quickly digested cause blood sugar to spike and then quickly drop, almonds cause a slower and steadier rise in blood sugar and insulin which leaves people feeling fuller for longer, experts claimed.
This makes foods that are low on the index more effective at preventing us from overeating, and a healthier option for diabetes sufferers, they reported in the Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism last year.
Prof Richard Mattes, of Purdue University in Indiana, US, who led the study, said participants who ate a breakfast containing whole almonds felt full for longer and recorded lower concentrations of blood glucose after breakfast and lunch than people who did not eat a low-glycemic breakfast.
Although it is important to eat enough calories for a balanced diet, moderate amounts of low-glycemic foods like almonds for breakfast could reduce the amount people need to eat in order to feel full and help them maintain a healthy weight, he added.

Source  - Telegraph

How Tai Chi in later life is good for the heart

Practising the ancient martial art of tai chi can boost elderly people's hearts, a study has found.

Older subjects who regularly performed the traditional Chinese mind-body exercise now enjoyed worldwide were less likely to suffer high blood pressure and were physically stronger. Researchers said a work-out which can achieve both good heart function and muscle power 'would be a preferred mode of training' for this group of society.
Heart pulse measurements showed it improved expansion and contraction of the arteries - known as arterial compliance - and increased knee muscle strength.
A number of studies have shown strength training to improve muscle function and offset the effects of ageing have also been accompanied by a decline in arterial compliance.

Tai Chi could be a suitable exercise for older people to avoid this problem, according to the findings published online in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology.

Source  - Daily Mail

Eating berries can cut men's risk of Parkinson's disease by 40 per cent

Eating strawberries, blue- berries, blackcurrants and blackberries could help to protect against Parkinson’s disease, researchers suggest.
Men who ate the fruits along with other foods rich in flavonoids were found to be 40 per cent less likely to develop the brain disease. And those who ate berries at least once a week could cut their risk of developing the disease by a quarter compared with those who never ate them, the study by British and U.S. experts also found.
Flavonoids – which are also found in tea and red wine – are antioxidants which can offer protection against a range of diseases including heart disease, some cancers and dementia.
The research is the first large-scale study looking at the effect of  flavonoids in protecting against  Parkinson’s disease, a progressive neurological condition which affects 125,000 Britons. 

Source  - Daily Mail

Drinking soya milk twice a day DOES reduce hot flushes

Soy has long been mooted as an ingredient for easing the symptoms of the menopause.
Now in the most comprehensive study to date, researchers have found that two daily servings of soy can reduce the frequency and severity of hot flashes by up to 26 percent compared to a placebo.
A team from the University of Delaware reviewed 19 previous studies that examined the effect of the protein source on more than 1,200 women. The effectiveness of soy in alleviating hot flushes has up to now been inconclusive, with some studies suggesting soy to be beneficial and others suggesting otherwise.
The authors of the latest study argue much of the discrepancy is due to small sample sizes and inconsistent methodology, according to the authors.
'When you combine them all, we've found the overall effect is still positive,' said study author Melissa Melby.

Source  - Daily Mail

Could eating your greens be a lifesaver?

Women diagnosed with breast cancer are more likely to survive if they eat up their greens, research suggests.
A large Chinese study found a link between higher consumption of cruciferous vegetables such as greens, cabbage and broccoli, and reduced breast cancer death rates.
Researchers followed the progress of almost 5,000 women for around five years after they were diagnosed with breast cancer. They found that the more cruciferous vegetables women ate during the first three years after diagnosis, the less likely they were to die.
As consumption increased, the chances of dying from breast cancer fell by between 22 per cent and 62 per cent and from all causes by between 27 per cent and 62 per cent.
Breast cancer recurrence risk also decreased, by between 21 per cent and 35 per cent
During the study period, a total of 587 women died, 496 from breast cancer. Researchers recorded 615 cases of recurrence.
The findings were presented at the annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research in Chicago, US.

Source  - Daily Mail 

Being angry makes you ill

Getting angry is a natural human reaction and, for most of us, the occasional outburst may help to release pent-up stress. But what happens to the body when it is continuously subjected to the emotional upheaval that accompanies day-to-day hostility and rage?
Scientific evidence suggests frequent angry outbursts may increase the long-term risk of everything from heart attacks and strokes to poor healing and a weakened immune system.
Last week researchers at the University of Granada in Spain found ‘looking back in anger’ at past mistakes could make us less able to withstand pain. They quizzed 50 men and women on their feelings about past events, mistakes made and missed opportunities.
The results, reported in the medical journal PLoS One, showed those who dwelt on the bad things in life were more likely to be sensitive to pain than those who lived life one day at a time.

Source  - Daily Mail

Why being stressed can wreak havoc with your immune system

As many of us know, stress can leave you feeling run down. Now scientists think they can explain why.
A study has shown how long-term stress plays havoc with the immune system, raising the odds of catching a cold. The same process could also explain  the role of traumatic events in raising the odds of illnesses from heart disease to depression. Scientists in the U.S. questioned 176 men and women about difficult experiences they had been through in the past 12 months.
Drops of the common cold virus were then dripped into their nose and scientists checked if they caught the germ. Those who had been under stress were twice as likely to develop a cold.
Importantly, tests showed their immune systems had become less sensitive to cortisol, a stress hormone which dampens the immune system.

Source  - Daily Mail

Taking dogs to work 'reduces employee stress'

Bringing pet dogs to work can reduce stress and make the job more satisfying for other employees, a study suggests.
US researchers found those with access to dogs were less stressed as the day went on than those who had none. The preliminary study published in the International Journal of Workplace Health Management  looked at 75 staff. The researchers suggested access to dogs boosted morale and reduced stress levels, whether people had access to their own pets or other people's.
The study was carried out by a team of researchers at Virginia Commonwealth University who looked at a manufacturing company where people are allowed to bring their pets to work. They compared those who brought in their own pets, with those who had dogs - but left them at home - and staff who did not own pets.
Over a week, the researchers compared employees' stress levels, job satisfaction and feelings about support from and commitment to the company.

Source  - BBC