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05-Aug-2011, 04:14 PM
Health Benefits of Fasting (http://www.columnpk.com/health-benefits-of-fasting-in-urdu/)http://www.islamicblog.co.in/wp-content/uploads/2010/11/fasting-in-Islam21.jpg


05-Aug-2011, 04:18 PM
Weight Loss: Dieting Tips and Side Effects (http://www.columnpk.com/weight-loss-dieting-tips-and-side-effects/)http://www.newpopularity.com/wp-content/uploads/13_4_orig.jpg

Are you planning to embark on dieting? The process of dieting might be tough and will require patience at the same time, but the whole process can be made lot easier by eating food which is low in calories but at the same time will appeal to your taste buds. With this you will never be hungry and sticking to the dieting plan will not be monotonous.
The following foods are low in calorie but high in nutrition content, which will make your journey to attain perfect body easy as well as lot more fun. Prior to beginning with your diet plan go through your shelf containing spices as this will be a redeeming factor when you get on with your diet plan. The food stuff is low in fat and little or no oil is used in cooking. The enhancers such as herbs as well as spices will improve the taste of your food. The spices that is a must have include nutmeg, mustard powder, cayenne pepper, mustard seeds and cinnamon. Cottage cheese is another ingredient that will assist in making your food yummy. The cottage cheese is an abundant source of calcium as well as protein, along with that its low calorie content makes it ideal for your diet chart. It can be made use of in salads as well in cooking. Green vegetables are another nutritious add-on to your daily diet chart. The vegetables linked with potato family should be wholly avoided as they include fewer calories as compared to the other vegetables. A salad for lunch will make you hale and hearty. So have as much as you can as they have minimal calories but are rich in nutrition value. Another great source that is stocked up with proteins is beans. Stock them up and consume them regularly. The energy and zeal you will feel after you put yourself on low calorie diet will be amazing. So, start now and enjoy life. Via, dietingacademy

05-Aug-2011, 04:20 PM


08-Aug-2011, 04:03 PM
Beat diabetes with wheat, rice free diet


6 August 2011

Forget the much advertised cornflake or the humble roti and rice—they can kill. Workday menus of Indians living in big cities are being redefined by the fear of proliferating diabetes brought on by stress and poor diet, say leading lifestyle doctors and diabeticians.
With India expected to be home to 80 percent of the world’s diabetic population by 2025, the buzzword is ‘low glycemic load foods’. The glycemic index or GI is a measure of the effects of carbohydrate on blood sugar level.

Studies have proved that people who eat low-glycemic food over several years are less prone to type 2 diabetes and coronary heart diseases than those who love their morning platter of ‘parantha, poori and roti (Indian breads)’ - the high glycemic delights.

‘The meals should be kept free of flour, cornflakes, wheat and rice,’ Gaurav Sharma, a diabetologist, sports medicine and lifestyle doctor told IANS. They can kill with excess starch and gluten allergy, the newest wheat allergen on the pantry shelf which can aggravate the condition of diabetics.

‘An ideal anti-diabetic breakfast, the most important meal of the day, should be a combination of eggs - fried, poached or scrambled in extra-virgin olive oil - accompanied by a tomato or mint dip followed by herbal or jasmine tea,’ he added.

Eggs do not increase cholesterol; the popular perception of eggs as a potential source of cholesterol is a myth, said the doctor who has treated several top sportspersons including Kapil Dev.

Sharma, who has been practising lifestyle medicine for the last two decades, has designed several anti-diabetes diet plans.

‘Every Indian family with or without a history of diabetes must use at least three different varieties of cooking oils rich in the essential Omega-3 fatty acids, which help production of natural insulin,’ the doctor said.

‘They can be olive oil, mustard oil, clarified butter, coconut oil or flaxseed oil,’ he added.

Breakfast is ideally followed by a light snack of nuts and tea after two-three hours. Three hours on, lunch should be a spartan affair.

‘Eat at least two platters of curried vegetables cooked in Omega 3 rich oil, a portion of ‘paneer’ or cottage cheese cooked in a light gravy of spices and tomatoes, chicken or mutton, the amount of which should not exceed the size of the palm for it corresponds to the size of the stomach,’ Sharma recommended.

According to the National Institute of Nutrition, ‘the shift from traditional to modern foods, changing cooking practices, increased intake of processed ready-to-eat foods, intensive marketing of junk food and health beverages have affected people’s perceptions to food as well as their dietary behaviour’.

A study by the institute said: ‘The irrational preference for energy dense foods and those with high sugar and salt content pose a serious health risk.’

Said nutrition expert Divya Sanglikar of Desidieter, a nutrition group: ‘The traditional Indian palette has always been considered healthy, second to Mediterranean food.’

‘But the fast-paced lifestyle and the boom in the food processing industry has been responsible for making people nutritionally lazy. Well-balanced ‘thalis’ (platters) are being replaced by takeaways and two-minute noodles, increasing the threat of diabetes and related complications,’ she added.

Diabetes-India.com, one of the oldest and the biggest online platforms campaigning for a diabetes-free life, advises that ‘traditional Indian diets with slight modifications are close to what is considered an ideal low diabetes diet’.

‘The basic advice is to avoid sugared foods,’ it prescribes.

The carbohydrate level should remain around 60-70 percent of the total calorie intake by a diabetes patient, while proteins should make up 12-18 percent of the total calories.
The portion of fats is best confined to 20-25 percent of the total calories, the Diabetes-India diet plan says.

The diabetes picture in the country is grim, said Sharma, quoting a new study conducted by an organisation in Chennai this year.

It revealed that Ernakulam topped the list of diabetes-ravaged cities with an incidence of 19.5 percent, followed by Thiruvananthapuram with 17.5 percent, Chennai 13.5
percent, Bangalore 13.5 percent and Delhi 10.5 percent.

According to global statistics, one person dies every 10 seconds of diabetes-related illnesses and two new diabetes cases are identified every 10 seconds.


12-Aug-2011, 12:53 AM
New test detects kidney disorder early


8 August 2011

The risk of cardiac disorders due to kidney diseases can now be reduced by an X-ray that makes early detection possible, health experts said.
‘Patients with chronic kidney diseases have higher levels of phosphorus in the blood, which causes increased calcification of the major arteries and heart valves. This contributes the increased risk of cardiovascular disease in such patients,’ said A.K. Bhalla, senior consultant and co-chairman at the department of nephrology, Sir ***** Ram hospital.

‘Lumbar X-ray of spine is performed to identify stones in the kidney and nephrocalcinosis, which can lead to renal failure in future,’ added Bhalla.

Experts recommend the abdominal X-ray to determine calcification at the right time and help in preventing fatal consequences. The test costs around Rs.200-250.

‘The lumbar X-ray also shows vascular calcification (deposition of calcium) especially in diabetic patients who are more vulnerable to kidney disorder,’ said Ashwani Gupta, from the nephrology department of the ***** Ram Hospital.

According to the National Kidney Foundation of India, 100 in a population of a million suffer from kidney diseases.

While around 90,000 kidney transplants per year are required in the country annually, only 22.5 percent patients requiring dialysis are able to receive treatment the treatment.

Experts suggest some of the common risks for kidney diseases are diabetes and hypertension.


12-Aug-2011, 12:55 AM
Red meat boosts diabetes risk


10 August 2011

WASHINGTON — Two slices of bacon, a hot dog or a serving of deli meat daily has been found to significantly boost the risk of getting type 2 diabetes, said a major US study published on Wednesday.
The research by experts at the Harvard School of Public Health represents the largest study of its kind to date and appears in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Eating 50 grams of processed red meat every day increased a person’s diabetes risk by 51 percent, while eating 100 grams of unprocessed red meat each day, about the size of a deck of cards, boosted the risk by 19 percent.
However, those risks went down if the red meat was substituted with nuts, white meat, low-fat dairy or whole grain proteins.
“Clearly, the results from this study have huge public health implications given the rising type 2 diabetes epidemic and increasing consumption of red meats worldwide,” said senior author Frank Hu.
“The good news is that such troubling risk factors can be offset by swapping red meat for a healthier protein.”
The data for the study came from questionnaire responses from more than 204,000 people in US nurses and health professionals’ studies. The subjects were tracked for between 14 and 28 years.
Researchers also updated a meta-analysis that included their data with other studies covering more than 442,000 participants.
Diabetes affects nearly 350 million adults worldwide, and more than 11 percent of adults over age 20 — or 25.6 million people — in the United States have the disease, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Type 2 diabetes, a chronic disease that involves high levels of blood sugar, is often caused by obesity, lack of exercise and unhealthy eating habits.

12-Aug-2011, 12:57 AM
‘Amazing’ therapy wipes out leukemia


11 August 2011
NEW YORK - Scientists are reporting the first clear success with a new approach for treating leukemia — turning the patients’ own blood cells into assassins that hunt and destroy their cancer cells.
They’ve only done it in three patients so far, but the results were striking: Two appear cancer-free up to a year after treatment, and the third patient is improved but still has some cancer. Scientists are already preparing to try the same gene therapy technique for other kinds of cancer.
“It worked great. We were surprised it worked as well as it did,” said Dr. Carl June, a gene therapy expert at the University of Pennsylvania. “We’re just a year out now. We need to find out how long these remissions last.”
He led the study, published Wednesday by two journals, New England Journal of Medicine and Science Translational Medicine.
It involved three men with very advanced cases of chronic lymphocytic leukemia, or CLL. The only hope for a cure now is bone marrow or stem cell transplants, which don’t always work and carry a high risk of death.
Scientists have been working for years to find ways to boost the immune system’s ability to fight cancer. Earlier attempts at genetically modifying bloodstream soldiers called T-cells have had limited success; the modified cells didn’t reproduce well and quickly disappeared.
June and his colleagues made changes to the technique, using a novel carrier to deliver the new genes into the T-cells and a signaling mechanism telling the cells to kill and multiply.
That resulted in armies of “serial killer” cells that targeted cancer cells, destroyed them, and went on to kill new cancer as it emerged. It was known that T-cells attack viruses that way, but this is the first time it’s been done against cancer, June said.
For the experiment, blood was taken from each patient and T-cells removed. After they were altered in a lab, millions of the cells were returned to the patient in three infusions.
The researchers described the experience of one 64-year-old patient in detail. There was no change for two weeks, but then he became ill with chills, nausea and fever. He and the other two patients were hit with a condition that occurs when a large number of cancer cells die at the same time — a sign that the gene therapy is working.
“It was like the worse flu of their life,” June said. “But after that, it’s over. They’re well.”
The main complication seems to be that this technique also destroys some other infection-fighting blood cells; so far the patients have been getting monthly treatments for that.
Penn researchers want to test the gene therapy technique in leukemia-related cancers, as well as pancreatic and ovarian cancer, he said. Other institutions are looking at prostate and brain cancer.
Dr. Walter J. Urba of the Providence Cancer Center in Portland, Oregon, called the findings “pretty remarkable” but added a note of caution because of the size of the study.
“It’s still just three patients. Three’s better than one, but it’s not 100,” said Urba, one of the authors of an editorial on the research that appears in the New England Journal.
What happens long-term is key, he said: “What’s it like a year from now, two years from now, for these patients.”
But Dr. Kanti Rai, a blood cancer expert at New York’s Long Island Jewish Medical Center, could hardly contain his enthusiasm, saying he usually is more reserved in his comments on such reports.
“It’s an amazing, amazing kind of achievement,” said Rai, who had no role in the research.
None of the three patients wanted to be identified, but one wrote about his illness, and his statement was provided by the university. The man, himself a scientist, called himself “very luck,” although he wrote that he didn’t feel that way when he was first diagnosed 15 years ago at age 50.
He was successfully treated over the years with chemotherapy until standard drugs no longer worked.
Now, almost a year since he entered the study, “I’m healthy and still in remission. I know this may not be a permanent condition, but I decided to declare victory and assume that I had won.”

12-Aug-2011, 06:46 PM
Chest pain severity not an attack indicator

12 August 2011
NEW YORK - A high degree of pain does not make it any more likely that someone coming into the emergency room with chest pains is having a heart attack, according to a study.
Researchers at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, who looked at more than 3,000 patients, also found that the most severe chest pain was not a good predictor of who was actually having a myocardial infarction, nor of which patients were more prone to having one over the next month.
The opposite was also true, said Anna Marie Chang, one of the authors of the study, which appeared in the Annals of Emergency Medicine.
“If chest pain isn’t severe, that doesn’t mean it’s not a heart attack,” she added.
Using a scale of zero to 10, with zero representing no pain and 10 being the worst pain imaginable, researchers gauged the pain levels of about 3,300 patients who arrived at the UPenn hospital emergency department complaining of chest pain.
They then followed the patients for 30 days to see who had further heart-related events.
Patients with the most severe chest pain were no more likely to be having a heart attack, or to have one within the next month, than patients with lesser pain. Pain that lasted more than an hour was also not a useful sign of a heart attack versus other conditions.
The pain of a heart attack also doesn’t always settle in the chest area but may be in the chest, arm, jaw back or abdomen, doctors said.
Failures to diagnose acute myocardial infarction account for 30 percent of malpractice claims paid out, the study authors said, with 2 to 5 percent of patients who are having heart attacks being inappropriately discharged from emergency departments.
But while pain severity wasn’t a good indicator of who was having a heart attack at the hospital, having arrived at the emergency department in an ambulance was.
That may be because people tend to dismiss chest pain until they are having symptoms they deem serious enough to warrant calling emergency services, said James Feldman, an emergency physician at Boston Medical Center who was not involved in the study.
“The cause of chest pain may or may not be a heart attack, but it could definitely be something serious,” he added.


17-Aug-2011, 05:53 PM
Coffee reduces cancer risk


15 August 2011
WASHINGTON — Coffee has been shown to reduce the risk of skin cancer by helping kill off damaged cells that could otherwise turn into tumors, according to a US study published on Monday.
The findings indicate that moderate caffeine drinking, or perhaps even applying coffee to the skin, could be useful in warding off non-melanoma cancer, the most commonly diagnosed of all skin cancers.
Using mice that had been genetically altered to suppress a protein called ATR, researchers showed that the mice were able to fend off cancer even when exposed to ultraviolet light.
Previous studies have suggested that drinking a cup of caffeinated coffee per day has the effect of suppressing ATR and triggering the die-off of cells harmed by UV rays.
The altered mice eventually did develop cancer, but three weeks later than normal mice.
After 19 weeks of ultraviolet light exposure, the engineered mice showed 69 percent fewer tumors and four times fewer invasive tumors than the control group.
However, the protective effects only went so far. After 34 weeks of UV exposure, all the mice developed tumors.
“Eventually, if you treat them long enough, the mice will develop cancer so it is not 100 percent protection forever,” Allan Coffey, one of the study’s authors, told AFP.
“Really, with almost any carcinogen, eventually all the animals will develop tumors.”
Coffey and his team were able to confirm their hypothesis that caffeine — when consumed or applied to the skin — works by inhibiting ATR. Now they say more studies are needed to see how it may work on humans.
“We want to see whether caffeine has an effect in people when you give it topically,” he said.
Skin cancer is the most prevalent cancer in the United States, with more than one million new cases each year, according to the National Cancer Institute.
Non-melanoma types of skin cancer, including basal cell and squamous cell types, are the most commonly diagnosed and are often treatable if detected early.


17-Aug-2011, 06:25 PM
Health benefits of milk (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2011/04/health-benefits-of-milk-for-human-boby.html) include good bone health, smooth skin (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/search/label/Skin), strong immune system, prevention of illnesses such as hypertension (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/search/label/Hypertension), dental decay, dehydration, respiratory problems, obesity, osteoporosis and even some forms of cancer (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/search/label/Cancer). The beneficial health nutrients obtained from milk are mandatory for human body and help in prevention of chronic ailments.

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-xeBKjQddGik/TbcyISf__rI/AAAAAAAAP1E/T6ogPJYTgIw/s400/2.jpg (http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-xeBKjQddGik/TbcyISf__rI/AAAAAAAAP1E/T6ogPJYTgIw/s1600/2.jpg)

Milk (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2011/04/health-benefits-of-milk-for-human-boby.html) is highly enriched in nutritional food value. It has almost all the regular nutritional elements such as protein, carbohydrate, fat, vitamins, minerals etc and thus provides a very healthy and natural source for fulfilling these nutritional needs.

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The nutritional value of milk have always influenced people all over the world to include it in diet. Addition of milk in your daily diet can also help in achieving a well balanced diet. Milk is an ideal source of nutrients such as vitamin A & B, calcium, carbohydrate, phosphorous, magnesium, protein, zinc and riboflavin.

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-N95nuYauWBg/TbcyIB5wzYI/AAAAAAAAP08/CqTgAefkEqE/s400/1.jpg (http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-N95nuYauWBg/TbcyIB5wzYI/AAAAAAAAP08/CqTgAefkEqE/s1600/1.jpg)

Milk (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2011/04/health-benefits-of-milk-for-human-boby.html) is extremely beneficial drink for mankind. Some of the advantages of drinking this life giving nectar are as follows:
* Calcium: Milk is the best source of calcium (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/search/label/Calcium) supply to our body. Calcium protects the body from major chronic ailments such as cancerous chemicals, bone loss, arthritic condition, migraine headaches (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/search/label/Migraine), pre-menstrual syndrome, and obesity in children and aids in losing unwanted fats.

* Milk is rich in calcium, which is very essential for growth and proper development of strong bone structure. Bone disorders such as osteoporosis can be prevented with daily intake of adequate quantity of milk.

* Taking a specific portion of milk in a daily basis helps to maintain a healthy blood pressure (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/search/label/Blood%20Pressure).

* Healthy Teeth: Encouraging children and youngsters to drink milk would give them excellent dental health, as milk protects the enamel surface against acidic substances.

* Regular consumption of milk also helps to reduce risk the risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/search/label/Diabetes).

* Rehydration: The body needs to be replenished with liquids at regular intervals. It is very essential for growing children and they must drink at least six to eight glasses of fluid every day. Milk (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2011/04/health-benefits-of-milk-for-human-boby.html) contains a good quantity of water molecules and is considered the best fluid for rehydration.

* Skin Care: Milk is known to benefit our skin (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/search/label/Skin) by helping us maintain a fair and smooth complexion. Milk is also good for dry skin (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/search/label/Skin), if you have dry skin apply milk on your face (and other body parts), leave it for about 15 minutes and then wash it, the milk solids nourish and smoothen your skin (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/search/label/Skin), the lactic acid present in milk is known to aid in removing the dead skin cells, thereby rejuvenating your skin.

* Acidity Reduction: Consumption of milk products can also help in reducing heartburn aches, and high acidity (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/search/label/Acidity) stomachs.

Milk (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2011/04/health-benefits-of-milk-for-human-boby.html) is a very healthy and natural diet and can be a substitute for unhealthy food with more fat and artificial elements.

18-Aug-2011, 02:33 AM
Reducing Cholesterol Levels | Reducing High Cholesterol (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2009/09/reducing-cholesterol-levels-reducing.html)

Cholesterol (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2009/09/reducing-cholesterol-levels-reducing.html), a yellowish fatty substance, is one of the essential ingredients of the body. Although it is essential to life, it has a bad reputation, being a major villain in heart disease (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/). Every person with high blood cholesterol (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2009/09/reducing-cholesterol-levels-reducing.html) is regarded as a potential candidate for heart attack or a stroke. Most of the cholesterol (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2009/09/reducing-cholesterol-levels-reducing.html) found in the body is produced in the liver. However, about twenty to thirty per cent generally comes from the food we eat. Cholesterol (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2009/09/reducing-cholesterol-levels-reducing.html) is measured in milligrams per 100 millimetres of blood (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/search/label/Blood%20Pressure). The normal level of cholesterol (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2009/09/reducing-cholesterol-levels-reducing.html) varies between 150 - 200 mg per 100 ml. In blood, cholesterol (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2009/09/reducing-cholesterol-levels-reducing.html) occurs in combination with certain lipids (fats), hence, known as lipoptroteins.

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Causes & Symptoms of High Cholesterol:The most common symptoms of high blood cholesterol (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2009/09/reducing-cholesterol-levels-reducing.html) are general fatigue, excess sweating and feel of uneasiness, pain (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/search/label/Pain) and heaviness in chest area and breathlessness (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/search/label/Sinus). Excessive smoking and alcohol consumption, eating high fat diet, obesity and heredity factors are some of the causes for high cholesterol. However, high cholesterol (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2009/09/reducing-cholesterol-levels-reducing.html) can be controlled at home using certain home remedies. Learn more on how to treat high cholesterol (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2009/09/reducing-cholesterol-levels-reducing.html) naturally.

Home Remedies for High Cholesterol:Following are some of the effective home remedies for high blood cholesterol (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2009/09/reducing-cholesterol-levels-reducing.html).* Add one teaspoon of honey and one teaspoon of lime juice in one cup of hot water. Take it daily in morning for natural lowering cholesterol (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2009/09/reducing-cholesterol-levels-reducing.html).

* The best home remedy to cure a person with high cholesterol (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2009/09/reducing-cholesterol-levels-reducing.html) is to have at least 8-10 glasses of water per day.

* Take foods rich in Vitamin E like sunflower seeds, safflower, soyabean oils, butter, and sprouted seed and grains.

* Alternatively, a person who has problems of high cholesterol (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2009/09/reducing-cholesterol-levels-reducing.html) can also have 2-3 cloves of garlic per day.

* Boil two tablespoons of dry seeds of coriander in a glass of water and strain the decoction after cooling.Take this decoction twice a day for lowering cholesterol (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2009/09/reducing-cholesterol-levels-reducing.html).

* Mix 10-12 tablespoons of apple juice and 5-6 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar. Intake this mixture once a day.

* Take onion juice to reduce cholesterol (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2009/09/reducing-cholesterol-levels-reducing.html), clean the blood (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/search/label/Blood%20Pressure), and regulate the heart.

* Regular exercising is very necessary to keep the cholesterol (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2009/09/reducing-cholesterol-levels-reducing.html) levels under control.

* Add a teaspoon of methi powder in a glass of water. Take it empty stomach for one month.

* Consume lots of almonds and walnuts. These are helpful in reducing the cholesterol (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2009/09/reducing-cholesterol-levels-reducing.html) levels.

* Persons suffering from high cholesterol (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2009/09/reducing-cholesterol-levels-reducing.html) should have foods rich in fiber such as raspberries, blackberries, strawberries, broccoli, green beans, etc.

* Having fenugreek seeds and sprouts helps to reduce the high cholesterol (http://beauty-healthcare.blogspot.com/2009/09/reducing-cholesterol-levels-reducing.html) levels.

18-Aug-2011, 02:53 AM
Apple Cider Vinegar and Honeyhttp://www.health-benefits-of-honey.com/applecidervinegarandhoney.html

Apple cider vinegar and honey combine two of the oldest home remedies for a variety of different ailments.

With each possessing its own wonderful healing properties, these natural ingredients are so very useful in treating everything from the common cold to high cholesterol and arthritis.

The benefits of apple cider vinegar and honey have been passed down from one generation to another for one simple reason – they are highly effective home health remedies and natural cures

What Are the Benefits of
Apple Cider Vinegar and Honey Well, our bodies are prone to a build-up of acid crystals; the fantastic benefits of these ingredients include its ability to flush all those little nasties out of our systems. Because we all tend to eat proteins from meat (unless you are a vegetarian) they unfortunately thicken our blood, however a daily dose of these will help thin your blood allowing much more oxygen to flow freely through our systems.
By looking after your diet your blood pressure remains stable and decreases your chances of hypertension, also known as high blood pressure.

Health Benefits of (ACV)This wonderful concoction should idealy not be over used, two teaspoons full per day mixed with around a litre of water and a few good dollops of honey to suit your taste is all you will need.
Drink this throughout the day. It is not good to drink the whole lot in one go!
Alone, ACV can be a difficult taste to adjust to. For this reason, apple cider vinegar and honey are usually combined to mask the unpleasantness of ACV, alone.

Apple Cider Vinegar Use for DiabetesSo much research has been carried out and the results have been quite astonishing for sufferers of this dreadful condition which is drastically on the increase. Ensuring we aware of Food nutrition facts (http://www.health-benefits-of-honey.com/food-nutrition-facts.html) will go a long way to preventing this.
During my own research I have discovered many websites extolling its virtues. I can give no higher credit to anyone other than to read this excellent article about Vinegar and Diabetes. (http://www.apple-cider-vinegar-benefits.com/vinegar-and-diabetes.html)

This website will explain to you all the benefits of ACV for diabetes and all other reasons for using this powerful natural food.
What Else is
Apple Cider Vinegar
and Honey Good For?

Supports a healthy complexion
Treats sinus infections
Commonly used to relieve sore throats
Relieves constipation
Helpful in lowering high cholesterol
Helpful in restoring high blood pressure to normal levels
A common flu treatment
Fights symptoms of Candida yeast overgrowth and other Yeast Infections (http://www.health-benefits-of-honey.com/whatisayeastinfection.html)
Helps with the Function of Insulin Function of Insulin (http://www.health-benefits-of-honey.com/functionofinsulin.html)
Helps relieve the symptoms of arthritis (http://www.health-benefits-of-honey.com/whatisarthritis.html) and even painful gout
Helpful in treating the symptoms of chronic fatigue
Restores proper pH balance (which guards against disease)
Relieves acid reflux
An effective treatment for dermatitis
Useful in weight loss In the famous Vinegar and Honey Diet (http://www.health-benefits-of-honey.com/vinegar-and-honey-diet.html)

20-Aug-2011, 06:21 PM
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Imagine a categorizing system in which numbers are assigned to foods, allowing you to more easily choose foods that curb appetite (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutrition_articles.asp?id=498), help shed excess pounds, lower your risk for diabetes (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutrition_articles.asp?id=868), help maintain blood sugar levels, and improve heart health (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/wellness_articles.asp?id=376). These are the claims of popular diets that use the Glycemic Index (GI, for short).

The Glycemic Index ranks carbohydrate-containing foods (on a scale from 0 to 100) based on their effects on blood sugar levels in the body. Foods are ranked based on how they compare to a reference food—either glucose or white bread. A food with a high glycemic index (70 or above) will elevate your blood glucose higher—and more quickly—than a food with a medium or low glycemic index (55 or less).

Highly processed and sweetened foods, such as candy or even bread made from refined white flour, tend to have a high glycemic index while less processed "whole" foods, such as an apple or whole-wheat bread tend to be lower in glycemic index. When planning meals using the glycemic index as a guide, proponents recommend choosing foods that are low or medium on the scale as often as possible. This usually is a good idea for any healthy diet because low-GI foods tend to be less processed, more nutritious and more wholesome. But plenty of good-for-you foods can have a high glycemic index (watermelon is one example), while other "unhealthy" foods like candy bars can be low on the GI scale.

Proponents of the GI diet (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutrition_articles.asp?id=498) believe that the lower the GI number of a carbohydrate food, the better. High GI foods are digested and metabolized more quickly, causing a rapid rise in blood glucose levels. This creates a dramatic spike in levels of the hormone insulin, which works to remove sugar from the blood. These responses can lead to an overproduction of insulin, contributing to weight gain. Therefore, carbohydrate foods with low glycemic indexes cause less insulin secretion and slow the clearing of glucose from the bloodstream—resulting in greater satiety (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutrition_articles.asp?id=673), and fewer calories consumed throughout the day.

To give you an idea of how various foods rank on the glycemic index, here are a few foods along with their average GI ranking. Remember that 55 or less is considered "low," 56-69 is considered "medium" and 70-100 is considered "high" on the glycemic index. Most non-carbohydrate or low-carbohydrate foods (protein, meat, fat, nuts, oil, etc.) have a "low" glycemic index.


Glycemic Index



Agave nectar


Dark chocolate












Tomato juice


Soy milk






Skim milk


Baked beans


Apple juice


Fruit yogurt




Snickers bar


Milk chocolate


Corn tortilla


Meat lasagna


Vegetable soup


Orange juice




Ice cream


Sweet corn


Potato chips


All-Bran cereal


Clif Bar


Power Bar






French fries


Green beans


Sweet potato




Popcorn, plain


Fruit punch


Brown rice


Baked potato


White bagel


White rice




White bread




Chocolate chip granola bar




Instant oatmeal


Corn flakes


Caramel rice cake




Rice milk


(Additional information and glycemic index values can be found at www.GlycemicIndex.com (http://www.glycemicindex.com/) and www.Mendosa.com (http://www.mendosa.com/). However, SparkPeople does not necessarily endorse the content or reliability of these websites.)

Diabetes Management: Carbohydrates and the Glycemic Index
According to the American Diabetes Association and the American Dietetic Association, there is no singular diet or meal plan (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutrition_articles.asp?id=498) that works for everyone with diabetes. People with diabetes are encouraged to work with a Certified Diabetes Educator (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/health_articles.asp?id=1531) to develop a personalized meal plan to achieve blood glucose control and weight management. Overall, research studies indicate that the total amount of carbohydrate consumed (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/health_articles.asp?id=882) is the strongest predictor of blood glucose response, and this is typically the first tool used in the managing of blood glucose levels. For individuals needing greater blood sugar control, choosing low-glycemic carbohydrates along with a carbohydrate-controlled diet plan (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/health_articles.asp?id=883) may produce modest results. However, it is not recommended that people with diabetes follow a low-GI eating plan alone. The amount of carbohydrates a person eats—regardless of their effects on blood sugar—is still important.

Glitches in the Glycemic Index
The glycemic index is a marvelous tool for ranking carbohydrate-containing foods, but it's still in its infancy and needs additional research. It can be challenging for individuals to make healthy food choices, and the glycemic index can add another level of complication to a person's diet. Although it does have some practical benefits, here are a few of the limitations of the glycemic index.

There is usually a wide variation in the glycemic index of any given food. Even in the chart above, the glycemic values listed are averages. One study can list a potato's glycemic index as low as 56 and another may rank it as high as 100. Therefore, the glycemic index is not an absolute—it should be thought of as a guide only.
Many factors affect the glycemic index of a given food: ripeness, storage time, processing, preparation, and the other foods you eat with it. For example, juice has a higher glycemic index than whole fruit; mashed potatoes are higher than a baked potato, and whole-wheat bread has a higher GI than whole-wheat flour.
Grinding and cooking can elevate the glycemic index of some foods, because these techniques make it quicker and easier for your body to digest food. For example, al dente pasta has a lower GI than soft-cooked pasta.
Glycemic indexes are based on individual foods, but most people eat food in combinations within a meal or snack. Eating carbohydrate foods with fiber, protein, and fat will usually reduce the glycemic index of a meal as a whole.
Every individual digests carbohydrates at a different rate, and your body's glycemic response may vary greatly throughout the day.
Not every "high" GI food should be avoided from a nutritional standpoint. And the inverse is also true: many low GI foods aren't necessarily healthful or nutritious. When certain high glycemic foods are eliminated from the diet, so are vital vitamins, minerals, fiber, and phytochemicals. Watermelon has a "high" glycemic index of 76, but it is high in potassium, vitamin A, and lycopene, and low in calories, for example. On the other end of the spectrum, a Snickers bar has a "low" glycemic index of 43, yet doesn't contribute much in the way of nutrition. Therefore, the use of the glycemic index needs to be balanced with basic nutrition principles and healthy food choices.
Relying on the glycemic index alone may lead to overeating and weight gain. The GI value represents the type of carbohydrate in a food (fast digesting or slow digesting), but says nothing about the amount of carbohydrates—or calories—it contains. Peanuts look like the perfect choice with a GI of 8, but with about 400 calories in 1/2 cup, they won’t help shed pounds (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutrition_articles.asp?id=498) when eaten in excess. Portion control (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutrition_articles.asp?id=177) is still relevant for managing blood glucose levels and for managing your weight.

SparkPeople's Stance
The glycemic index is one option for ranking the healthfulness of carbohydrate-containing foods, but it's not perfect—and more research is needed. It's not a bad idea to be aware of the glycemic index and applying some of its principles when choosing carbohydrates for blood sugar control and filling power. Just don't rely fully on the glycemic index as a guide for what to eat and what to avoid. Keep the following facts in mind:

20% of the average American's calories come from high-carbohydrate, "empty calorie" foods, such as cakes, cookies, pies, pastries, ice cream, sugar, candy, soda pop, and chips. Current recommendations state (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutrition_articles.asp?id=616) that sugar should make up NO MORE than 7% of one’s total calorie intake.
Fresh fruits and vegetables, and whole grains (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutrition_articles.asp?id=747) are nutritionally superior to highly processed, refined products.
Simply limiting the total number of carbohydrates you consume at any given meal can more easily control your blood sugar levels than choosing low-glycemic foods alone can. Follow the carbohydrate range provided on your SparkPeople Nutrition Tracker (http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/nutrition.asp), and distribute your daily total evenly among 3 meals and 1-3 snacks. By focusing on portion sizes and balanced meals throughout the day, you'll help keep your blood glucose—and hunger—levels in check.
You probably don’t need a complicated rating system to confuse you about which carbohydrates to include in your diet. We believe that the glycemic index is just one of many tools that can help you learn about the pros and cons of various foods, but it should not be the be-all-end-all guide to healthy eating.

Selected Sources
Nutrition Recommendations and Interventions for Diabetes: a position statement of the American Diabetes Association. American Diabetes Association, Bantle JP, Wylie-Rosett J, Albright AL, Apovian CM, Clark NG, Franz MJ, Hoogwerf BJ, Lichtenstein AH, Mayer-Davis E, Mooradian AD, Wheeler ML. Diabetes Care. 2010 Aug;33(8):1911.

The Evidence for Medical Nutrition Therapy for Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes in Adults, Franz MJ, Powers MA, Leontos C, Holzmeister LA, Kulkarni K, Monk A, Wedel N, Gradwell E. Journal of the American Dietetic Association, 2010 Dec :110(12):1852-89.
Copy and Paste following link for useful knowledge about the FOODS

20-Aug-2011, 06:29 PM
Imagine a categorizing system in which numbers are assigned to foods, allowing you to more easily choose foods that curb appetite (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutrition_articles.asp?id=498), help shed excess pounds, lower your risk for diabetes (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutrition_articles.asp?id=868), help maintain blood sugar levels, and improve heart health (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/wellness_articles.asp?id=376). These are the claims of popular diets that use the Glycemic Index (GI, for short).

The Glycemic Index ranks carbohydrate-containing foods (on a scale from 0 to 100) based on their effects on blood sugar levels in the body. Foods are ranked based on how they compare to a reference food—either glucose or white bread. A food with a high glycemic index (70 or above) will elevate your blood glucose higher—and more quickly—than a food with a medium or low glycemic index (55 or less).

Highly processed and sweetened foods, such as candy or even bread made from refined white flour, tend to have a high glycemic index while less processed "whole" foods, such as an apple or whole-wheat bread tend to be lower in glycemic index. When planning meals using the glycemic index as a guide, proponents recommend choosing foods that are low or medium on the scale as often as possible. This usually is a good idea for any healthy diet because low-GI foods tend to be less processed, more nutritious and more wholesome. But plenty of good-for-you foods can have a high glycemic index (watermelon is one example), while other "unhealthy" foods like candy bars can be low on the GI scale.

Proponents of the GI diet (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutrition_articles.asp?id=498) believe that the lower the GI number of a carbohydrate food, the better. High GI foods are digested and metabolized more quickly, causing a rapid rise in blood glucose levels. This creates a dramatic spike in levels of the hormone insulin, which works to remove sugar from the blood. These responses can lead to an overproduction of insulin, contributing to weight gain. Therefore, carbohydrate foods with low glycemic indexes cause less insulin secretion and slow the clearing of glucose from the bloodstream—resulting in greater satiety (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutrition_articles.asp?id=673), and fewer calories consumed throughout the day.

To give you an idea of how various foods rank on the glycemic index, here are a few foods along with their average GI ranking. Remember that 55 or less is considered "low," 56-69 is considered "medium" and 70-100 is considered "high" on the glycemic index. Most non-carbohydrate or low-carbohydrate foods (protein, meat, fat, nuts, oil, etc.) have a "low" glycemic index.


Glycemic Index



Agave nectar


Dark chocolate












Tomato juice


Soy milk






Skim milk


Baked beans


Apple juice


Fruit yogurt




Snickers bar


Milk chocolate


Corn tortilla


Meat lasagna


Vegetable soup


Orange juice




Ice cream


Sweet corn


Potato chips


All-Bran cereal


Clif Bar


Power Bar






French fries


Green beans


Sweet potato




Popcorn, plain


Fruit punch


Brown rice


Baked potato


White bagel


White rice




White bread




Chocolate chip granola bar




Instant oatmeal


Corn flakes


Caramel rice cake




Rice milk


(Additional information and glycemic index values can be found at www.GlycemicIndex.com (http://www.glycemicindex.com/) and www.Mendosa.com (http://www.mendosa.com/). However, SparkPeople does not necessarily endorse the content or reliability of these websites.)

Diabetes Management: Carbohydrates and the Glycemic Index
According to the American Diabetes Association and the American Dietetic Association, there is no singular diet or meal plan (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutrition_articles.asp?id=498) that works for everyone with diabetes. People with diabetes are encouraged to work with a Certified Diabetes Educator (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/health_articles.asp?id=1531) to develop a personalized meal plan to achieve blood glucose control and weight management. Overall, research studies indicate that the total amount of carbohydrate consumed (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/health_articles.asp?id=882) is the strongest predictor of blood glucose response, and this is typically the first tool used in the managing of blood glucose levels. For individuals needing greater blood sugar control, choosing low-glycemic carbohydrates along with a carbohydrate-controlled diet plan (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/health_articles.asp?id=883) may produce modest results. However, it is not recommended that people with diabetes follow a low-GI eating plan alone. The amount of carbohydrates a person eats—regardless of their effects on blood sugar—is still important.

Glitches in the Glycemic Index
The glycemic index is a marvelous tool for ranking carbohydrate-containing foods, but it's still in its infancy and needs additional research. It can be challenging for individuals to make healthy food choices, and the glycemic index can add another level of complication to a person's diet. Although it does have some practical benefits, here are a few of the limitations of the glycemic index.

There is usually a wide variation in the glycemic index of any given food. Even in the chart above, the glycemic values listed are averages. One study can list a potato's glycemic index as low as 56 and another may rank it as high as 100. Therefore, the glycemic index is not an absolute—it should be thought of as a guide only.
Many factors affect the glycemic index of a given food: ripeness, storage time, processing, preparation, and the other foods you eat with it. For example, juice has a higher glycemic index than whole fruit; mashed potatoes are higher than a baked potato, and whole-wheat bread has a higher GI than whole-wheat flour.
Grinding and cooking can elevate the glycemic index of some foods, because these techniques make it quicker and easier for your body to digest food. For example, al dente pasta has a lower GI than soft-cooked pasta.
Glycemic indexes are based on individual foods, but most people eat food in combinations within a meal or snack. Eating carbohydrate foods with fiber, protein, and fat will usually reduce the glycemic index of a meal as a whole.
Every individual digests carbohydrates at a different rate, and your body's glycemic response may vary greatly throughout the day.
Not every "high" GI food should be avoided from a nutritional standpoint. And the inverse is also true: many low GI foods aren't necessarily healthful or nutritious. When certain high glycemic foods are eliminated from the diet, so are vital vitamins, minerals, fiber, and phytochemicals. Watermelon has a "high" glycemic index of 76, but it is high in potassium, vitamin A, and lycopene, and low in calories, for example. On the other end of the spectrum, a Snickers bar has a "low" glycemic index of 43, yet doesn't contribute much in the way of nutrition. Therefore, the use of the glycemic index needs to be balanced with basic nutrition principles and healthy food choices.
Relying on the glycemic index alone may lead to overeating and weight gain. The GI value represents the type of carbohydrate in a food (fast digesting or slow digesting), but says nothing about the amount of carbohydrates—or calories—it contains. Peanuts look like the perfect choice with a GI of 8, but with about 400 calories in 1/2 cup, they won’t help shed pounds (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutrition_articles.asp?id=498) when eaten in excess. Portion control (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutrition_articles.asp?id=177) is still relevant for managing blood glucose levels and for managing your weight.

SparkPeople's Stance
The glycemic index is one option for ranking the healthfulness of carbohydrate-containing foods, but it's not perfect—and more research is needed. It's not a bad idea to be aware of the glycemic index and applying some of its principles when choosing carbohydrates for blood sugar control and filling power. Just don't rely fully on the glycemic index as a guide for what to eat and what to avoid. Keep the following facts in mind:

20% of the average American's calories come from high-carbohydrate, "empty calorie" foods, such as cakes, cookies, pies, pastries, ice cream, sugar, candy, soda pop, and chips. Current recommendations state (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutrition_articles.asp?id=616) that sugar should make up NO MORE than 7% of one’s total calorie intake.
Fresh fruits and vegetables, and whole grains (http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutrition_articles.asp?id=747) are nutritionally superior to highly processed, refined products.
Simply limiting the total number of carbohydrates you consume at any given meal can more easily control your blood sugar levels than choosing low-glycemic foods alone can. Follow the carbohydrate range provided on your SparkPeople Nutrition Tracker (http://www.sparkpeople.com/myspark/nutrition.asp), and distribute your daily total evenly among 3 meals and 1-3 snacks. By focusing on portion sizes and balanced meals throughout the day, you'll help keep your blood glucose—and hunger—levels in check.
You probably don’t need a complicated rating system to confuse you about which carbohydrates to include in your diet. We believe that the glycemic index is just one of many tools that can help you learn about the pros and cons of various foods, but it should not be the be-all-end-all guide to healthy eating.

Selected Sources
Nutrition Recommendations and Interventions for Diabetes: a position statement of the American Diabetes Association. American Diabetes Association, Bantle JP, Wylie-Rosett J, Albright AL, Apovian CM, Clark NG, Franz MJ, Hoogwerf BJ, Lichtenstein AH, Mayer-Davis E, Mooradian AD, Wheeler ML. Diabetes Care. 2010 Aug;33(8):1911.

The Evidence for Medical Nutrition Therapy for Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes in Adults, Franz MJ, Powers MA, Leontos C, Holzmeister LA, Kulkarni K, Monk A, Wedel N, Gradwell E. Journal of the American Dietetic Association, 2010 Dec :110(12):1852-89.
Copy and Paste following link for useful knowledge about the FOODS

07-Sep-2011, 05:37 PM
Natural compound prevents diabetes

5 September 2011
TORONTO - Resveratrol, a natural compound found in grapes, mulberries and peanuts is effective against diabetes, claims a study.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/health_050620111.jpgResveratrol has been shown to extend the lifespan of many species.
Human offsprings that have trouble developing in the womb have a higher risk of developing metabolic problems later in life, the journal Diabetes reports.
University of Alberta researchers Jason Dyck and Sandra Davidge found that giving resveratrol to young offsprings of lab rats after weaning, actually prevented the development of certain symptoms of diabetes.

07-Sep-2011, 05:39 PM
Many lifestyle factors linked to diabetes

6 September 2011
NEW YORK - A new study reports that weight, diet, exercise, smoking and alcohol intake may each independently influence a person’s risk of getting diabetes.
Researchers found that even when people had a family history of diabetes or were overweight, they were less likely to get the chronic disease if they were healthy in other ways.
And each additional lifestyle improvement lowered their risk.
‘There are implications certainly for individuals to take one step at a time toward a healthy lifestyle,’ said Jared Reis, one of the study’s authors from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute in Bethesda, Maryland.
And, he told Reuters Health, ‘there is certainly benefit for those who may have a tough time with losing weight if they adopt these other healthy lifestyle factors.’
The data came from more than 200,000 Americans who filled out surveys about their lifestyle, diet and health status in 1995 and 1996, when most were in their fifties and sixties. None of them had diabetes at the start of the study.
Ten years later, researchers sent them another survey asking whether they had been diagnosed with diabetes.
In all, about one in 10 men and one in 13 women reported having the disease.
Looking back at the original surveys, the researchers broke health and lifestyle-related questions into five categories: body mass index (BMI, a measure of weight in relation to height), diet, physical activity, smoking and alcohol consumption.
They found that each healthy behavior listed on that survey—such as exercising for at least 20 minutes a day, three times per week, or never smoking or quitting at least a decade ago—lowered a person’s future diabetes risk independent of the other lifestyle components.
For example, people who smoked, drank heavily, and got little exercise still had a lower diabetes risk if they ate a healthy diet than if they ate lots of saturated fats and few fiber-rich whole grains.
That was also the case for people who had a family history of diabetes, and so were at higher risk to begin with.
Overall, normal-weight women who ate a healthy diet, exercised, drank moderately and didn’t smoke were 84 percent less likely to get diabetes than women who were overweight and didn’t fit any of the criteria for a healthy lifestyle. For healthy men, the diabetes risk was cut by 72 percent compared to men with unhealthy habits.
Even though heavy people were still better off if they were healthy in other ways, the researchers said weight was the most important factor in predicting who developed diabetes.
‘While the message is that all these things matter...the number one top-of-the-list take-home is, don’t be overweight in the first place,’ said Dr. Lawrence Phillips, an endocrinologist at Emory University in Atlanta who wasn’t involved in the new research. ‘It’s important not to confuse the baby with the bathwater here,’ he added.
Lawrence also pointed out that the cut-off used to define a normal, healthy weight in the study was a BMI of 25 -- the equivalent of someone who is five feet, five inches and weighs 150 pounds.
While that’s realistic for people who are white, he told Reuters Health, studies have suggested that Asians and people of other ethnicities might have an increased diabetes risk at lower BMIs as well, and that their threshold for being overweight may be different.
One limitation to the study, the researchers reported in Annals of Internal Medicine, is that participants may have changed their lifestyle during the decade following the first survey—and those changes wouldn’t be reflected in the findings.
The study also can’t prove definitively that by cutting out cigarettes or saturated fats, any one person can lower his or her risk of diabetes. It’s possible, for example, that people who exercised less were also less healthy for other reasons not measured by the surveys.
But Dr. David Jenkins, a nutrition researcher from the University of Toronto who also didn’t participate in the new study, said the findings point to ‘a way forward’ for people who are motivated to lower their risk of diabetes. ‘This just says, look, this is what you have to do,’ he told Reuters Health.
‘This would suggest again that even for those who have a family history, if you adopt a healthy lifestyle you can have a strong influence on whether you end up developing diabetes,’ Reis said.
‘The fact that (those findings) are evident in this older population is also a good thing,’ he said. ‘It means it’s never too late.’
SOURCE: http://bit.ly/atTzv0 (http://bit.ly/atTzv0) Annals of Internal Medicine

07-Sep-2011, 05:39 PM
Is chocolate good for your heart?

29 August 2011
PARIS- Chocolate may be good for the heart but cardiologists are not giving you a licence to indulge.
New research presented at Europe’s biggest medical meeting on Monday suggested chocolate consumption might be associated with a one third reduction in the risk of developing heart disease.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/choco1_29082011.jpgJust why there should be such a link was unclear, the European Society of Cardiology congress was told.
There has been a string of scientific studies in recent years showing a potential health benefit from eating chocolate. Dark chocolate, in particular, contains compounds called flavanols thought to be good for the blood system.
In an attempt to paint a clearer picture, Oscar Franco and colleagues from the University of Cambridge pooled results from seven studies involving 100,000 people.
Five of the studies showed a beneficial link between eating chocolate and cardiovascular health, while two did not.
Overall, the findings showed the highest levels of chocolate consumption were associated with a 37 percent reduction in cardiovascular disease and a 29 percent reduction in stroke compared with the lowest levels.
Franco said there were limitations with the pooled analysis, which did not differentiate between dark and milk chocolate, and more research was needed to test whether chocolate actually caused better health outcomes or if it was due to some other confounding factor.
“Evidence does suggest chocolate might have some heart health benefits but we need to find out why that might be,” said Victoria Taylor, of the British Heart Foundation, who was not involved in the research.
“If you want to reduce your heart disease risk, there are much better places to start than at the bottom of a box of chocolates.”
Franco, whose findings were also published online in the British Medical Journal, said while it seemed chocolate had heart benefits, these could easily be outweighed by the unhealthy nature of much confectionery.
“The high sugar and fat content of commercially available chocolate should be considered, and initiatives to reduce it might permit an improved exposure to the beneficial effect of chocolate,” the research team wrote.

09-Sep-2011, 03:09 AM
Weight Watchers works, study finds

8 September 2011, 7:54 AM
LONDON - Overweight patients told by their doctors to go to Weight Watchers lose around twice as much weight as people receiving standard weight loss care over 12 months, according to the findings of a study published on Thursday.
In the first randomised controlled trial — considered the gold standard of scientific analysis — to directly compare a commercial weight-loss programme with standard care by family doctors, Weight Watchers was found to be more than twice as effective.
http://www.khaleejtimes.ae/images/health_08092011.jpgMore people stuck to the Weight Watchers diet, they lost more weight and fat mass, and also shaved more off their waist measurements than those assigned to standard care.
Susan Jebb of Britain’s Medical Research Council (MRC) Human Nutrition Research Unit, who led the study said the results showed that Weight Watchers is “a robust intervention that is generalisable to other economically developed countries.”
“This kind of research is important so that we can identify clinically effective interventions to treat obesity,” Jebb said.
The study, published in the Lancet medical journal, comes in the wake of research last month which said obesity is a global epidemic that is fast replacing tobacco as the single most important preventable cause of costly chronic diseases like heart disease, diabetes and cancer.
Worldwide, around 1.5 billion adults are overweight and another 0.5 billion are obese, with 170 million children classified as overweight or obese. Obesity takes up between 2 to 6 percent of healthcare costs in many countries.
In the weight loss study, which was funded by Weight Watchers International but run as an investigator-led trial with all data collection and analysis conducted by the independent research team, researchers assessed 772 overweight and obese adults in Australia, Germany and Britain.
Patients were randomly assigned to receive either 12 months of standard care as usually offered by the primary care team, or referred to and given a 12-month free membership for a Weight Watchers group in their neighbourhood.
As well as losing twice as much weight as those in the standard care group, patients referred to Weight Watchers were also more than three times as likely to lose 10 percent or more of their initial body weight. Some 61 percent of patients in the Weight Watchers group lost at least 5 percent of their body weight, compared with 32 percent in the standard care group.
The average weight loss at 12 months was 5.1 kg for those using Weight Watchers versus 2.2 kg for those on standard care. For those who completed the full 12 months, average weight loss was 6.7 kg on Weight Watchers versus 3.3 kg on standard care.
In a commentary on the study, Kate Jolly and Paul Aveyard of the school of health and population sciences at Britain’s Birmingham University said cost-effectiveness was a key factor in determining whether commercial programmes like Weight Watchers become part of publicly funded health care.
They added that “the low cost of these programmes — at present about £50-60 for 12 weeks — makes the case for incorporation intuitively appealing.”
David Kirchhoff, CEO of Weight Watchers International said the Lancet study “proves that Weight Watchers is part of the solution to help transform the health of nations.”
“There is a clear need for practical treatment solutions that are proven effective, affordable and scalable to have a population-wide impact,” he said in a statement.

13-Sep-2011, 04:18 AM
What are the foods we can eat to reduce High Blood Pressure – Top 10 foods to reduce High Blood Pressure (http://gofotos.net/home/index.php/2011/07/what-are-the-foods-we-can-eat-to-reduce-high-blood-pressure-top-10-foods-to-reduce-high-blood-pressure/) http://gofotos.net/home/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/best-foods-to-lower-high-blood-pressure-2.jpg (http://gofotos.net/home/index.php/2011/07/what-are-the-foods-we-can-eat-to-reduce-high-blood-pressure-top-10-foods-to-reduce-high-blood-pressure/best-foods-to-lower-high-blood-pressure-2/)High blood pressure or hypertension is a medical condition where the arterial blood pressure increases.
The reasons could be too much stress, obesity, high intake of salt, diabetes etc. The probability of cardiovascular diseases such as heart strokes, heart failure, kidney disorders, heart attack etc increases with a high BP.
Given below is a list of 10 foods that can help you lower down the blood pressure:
Spinach: It contains magnesium, folate, iron, vitamin C and is very healthy for your body. Even if you don’t like it, make sure that you include this nutrient rich vegetable in your diet as it contains those key ingredients.
Banana: It is rich in potassium which is perhaps the most important nutrient to lower down the high blood pressure. A banana a day keeps the high blood pressure away. It assures you of good health.
Kiwi: Of late, the kiwifruit is being prescribed to battle hypertension. Rich in potassium and Vitamin C, it helps lower down the BP. Kiwis are also rich in an antioxidant called lutein, which, it is thought, might help fight the disease.
Skimmed milk: Easily available and a part of daily consumption. It contains plenty of calcium and vitamin D and the two nutrients team up to bring down blood pressure.
Garlic: A single clove of garlic does wonders. It has several properties which help prevent clotting and thickening of blood vessels. Also, it can easily fight the damage caused due to high BP.http://gofotos.net/home/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/best-foods-to-lower-high-blood-pressure-1.jpg (http://gofotos.net/home/index.php/2011/07/what-are-the-foods-we-can-eat-to-reduce-high-blood-pressure-top-10-foods-to-reduce-high-blood-pressure/best-foods-to-lower-high-blood-pressure-1/)
Beans: Kidney, pinto, lima and black beans are some types of beans you should include in your daily diet. Beans are rich, both in magnesium and potassium, capable of decreasing the high blood pressure.
Broccoli: Oozing with potassium, it also contains chromium which fights against the cardiovascular diseases. It controls the blood sugar and insulin levels.http://gofotos.net/home/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/best-foods-to-lower-high-blood-pressure.jpg (http://gofotos.net/home/index.php/2011/07/what-are-the-foods-we-can-eat-to-reduce-high-blood-pressure-top-10-foods-to-reduce-high-blood-pressure/best-foods-to-lower-high-blood-pressure/)
Celery: It contains an ingredient called phthalide which rests the muscles of the vessels and aids in the smooth flow of blood. Besides that, celery has a very calming effect and is highly recommended if you are prone to stress.
Tomatoes: It contains an antioxidant lycopene, which is known to significantly reduce the high blood pressure. Also, tomatoes are rich in calcium, potassium, vitamins A, C and E, all the essential nutrients required to curb the problem.
Others: Apart from the nine foods mentioned above, sunflower seeds, olive oil, avocadoes, papaya, dark chocolates and various juices are helpful in bringing the blood pressure levels to normal. It is advisable to eat vegetables and fruits rich in potassium and calcium. Intake of salt (which contains sodium) should be minimized. Avoid eating fried stuff.

13-Sep-2011, 04:20 AM
Lime/Elumichai/Lemon medicinal properties plus health benefits home remedies (http://gofotos.net/home/index.php/2010/10/limeelumichailemon-medicinal-properties-plus-health-benefits-home-remedies/) http://gofotos.net/home/wp-content/uploads/2010/10/lime-elumichai-lemon-medicinal-properties-plus-health-benefits-home-remedies.gif (http://gofotos.net/home/index.php/2010/10/limeelumichailemon-medicinal-properties-plus-health-benefits-home-remedies/lime-elumichai-lemon-medicinal-properties-plus-health-benefits-home-remedies/)Lime/Elumichai/Lemon Health Benefits Lime is a citrus fruit that has a high content of Vitamin C. It makes an effective home remedy for diarrhoea, obesity, thirst and piles. It is a thorny shrub with spreading branches, aromatic leaves and white flowers. The fruits are large and spherical with pale acrid pulp and many seeds.
Lime not only has Vitamin C, but also Vitamin P which helps in the assimilation of Vitamin C in the body. It is digestive, carminative, stimulant, antiseptic, anti scorbutic, laxative and anthelmintic.
Lime/Elumichai/Lemon Home Remedies It is used to treat the following conditions:

Diarrhoea A mixture of onion juice and lime juice arrests mild diarrhea, owing to its combination of antiseptic, astringent and nutritive properties
Bitterness in the mouth Due to biliousness and indigestion, a bitter taste might persist in the mouth. Taking a glass of lime juice with a piece of ginger crushed into it is an ideal remedy.
Piles Slit a small lime into two and sprinkle some rock salt powder inside. Put this lime into the mouth and suck the juice slowly. Do this regularly and this will heal the pile masses.
Cold Lime has a high content of Vitamin C and it is ideal in colds and fevers. Dilute lime juice with honey and drink this regularly.

16-Sep-2011, 12:33 AM
Most cases of dementia are not diagnosed

13 September 2011
CHICAGO - About 28 million of the nearly 36 million people living with Alzheimer’s and other dementias have not been diagnosed, robbing them from the benefit of treatments and the chance to have a say in their future care, according to a report released on Tuesday.
It found that many people are not diagnosed with dementia until the disease is well advanced.
“Failure to diagnose Alzheimer’s in a timely manner represents a tragic missed opportunity to improve the quality of life for millions of people,” said Dr. Daisy Acosta, chairman of Alzheimer’s Disease International, a patient advocacy group that sponsored the study.
The group last year estimated that Alzheimer’s and other dementias cost $604 billion globally to treat, a figure that will soar as the number of sufferers triples by 2050.
Its latest report, which makes the case for early diagnosis of Alzheimer’s, comes just days before a United Nations meeting on Alzheimer’s and is aimed at getting the disease on the agenda of world leaders.
The group is pushing for all countries to develop a national dementia strategy that promotes early diagnosis and offers a range of care from primary care doctors, specialists, and community-based treatment centers.
Recent studies suggest the disease starts developing at least a decade before symptoms appear.
Many scientists and patient advocates believe earlier testing will play an important role in getting people treated and in preparing families for the burden ahead.
“The report is really mainly about the estimated 28 million out of 36 million people worldwide with dementia who don’t have a diagnosis,” said Professor Martin Prince of King’s College London Institute of Psychiatry, who led the study.
Among the study’s main findings, he said it shows that while current Alzheimer’s treatments — Aricept from Eisai Co and Pfizer Inc, Reminyl from Shire, and Exelon from Novartis Exelon — are no cure for the disease, they can improve symptoms in some patients. That could allow some to delay a nursing home stay, for example.
Prince said early diagnosis could save high-income countries as much as $10,000 per patient. While that might not mean much to individual families taking care of a loved one with a disease that can span several years, those savings could make a significant difference on a global scale.
And there are other reasons to diagnose patients.
“Earlier diagnosis can also transform the design and execution of clinical trials to test new treatments,” Marc Wortmann, executive director of ADI, said in a statement.
Researchers increasingly believe that many drugs being tested for Alzheimer’s have been tried on people who are already too far gone. Earlier diagnosis will help countries develop infrastructure for treating people in the earliest stages of the disease, when drugs have the most chance of doing some good.
Dr. Sam Gandy of the Mount Sinai Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center in New York said existing drugs are only modestly effective, and they always wear off.
“Eighteen months after you start a drug, they are in the same place,” he said in a telephone interview.
But Robert Egge, vice president of public policy at the U.S.-based Alzheimer’s Association, said the burden of Alzheimer’s is so great that even modest benefits are worth pursuing.
“We certainly need to push for more effective disease-modifying treatments that can slow or stop the disease, and at the same time we see the treatment value that can follow from early diagnosis,” he said.


16-Sep-2011, 12:35 AM
Spice up broccoli to fight cancer better http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/brocolithumb_15092011.jpg


15 September 2011
Mixing fresh broccoli with a spicy food that contains enzyme myrosinase boosts its cancer-fighting ability, a new study says.
The enzyme also ensures that the item is absorbed and placed in the upper part of the digestive system where it bestows the maximum health benefit, the study suggests.
“To get this effect, spice up your broccoli with broccoli sprouts, mustard, horseradish, or wasabi. The spicier, the better; that means it’s being effective,” said study author Elizabeth Jeffery, University of Illinois professor of nutrition.
It’s no secret that many people cook the benefits right out of broccoli instead of steaming it lightly for two to four minutes to protect its healthful properties, said Jenna Cramer who led the study, the British Journal of Nutrition reports.
“However, this study shows that even if broccoli is overcooked, you can still boost its benefits by pairing it with another food that contains myrosinase,” she said according to a university statement.
Myrosinase is the enzyme necessary to form sulforaphane, the vegetable’s cancer-preventive component, study co-author Margarita Teran-Garcia explained.
Other foods that will boost broccoli’s benefits if they are paired together include radishes, cabbage, arugula, watercress and Brussels sprouts.


16-Sep-2011, 12:37 AM
:lol: :lol:
Laughter is the best medicine http://anju66.files.wordpress.com/2011/03/laughing-smiley.gif

14 September 2011
PARIS — A rattling good laugh with friends will help you deal with pain thanks to opiate-like chemicals that flood the brain, according to a British study released on Wednesday.
Researchers carried out lab experiments in which volunteers watched either comedy clips from “Mr Bean” or “Friends,” or non-humorous items such as golf or wildlife programmes, while their resistance to mild pain was monitored.
Another test was conducted at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, where the volunteers watched either a stand-up comedy show or a theatrical drama.
In lab conditions, the pain came from a deep-frozen wine-cooler sleeve which was slipped onto the arm or from a blood-pressure cuff that was pumped to the threshold of tolerance.
For the Fringe Festival, the volunteers were asked to do a tough exercise — leaning against the wall with their legs at right angles, as if sitting on a straight-backed chair — before and immediately after the performance, to see if laughter had helped with the pain.
Just 15 minutes of laughter increased the level of pain tolerance by around 10 percent, the study found.
In the lab experiments, the neutral, non-funny programming had no pain-alleviating effect at all. Nor did watching drama at the Fringe Festival.
However, the study notes two important distinctions.
The only laughter that worked was relaxed, unforced laughter that creases the eyes, as opposed to a polite titter.
And this kind of belly laugh is far likelier to happen when you are with others, rather than being alone.
“Very little research has been done into why we laugh and what role it plays in society,” said Robin Dunbar, head of the Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology at the University of Oxford.
“Using microphones, we were able to record each of the participants and found that in a comedy show, they laughed for about a third of the time, and their pain tolerance rose as a consequence.”
The protection apparently comes from endorphins, a complex chemical that helps to transmit messages between neurons but also dulls signals of physical pain and psychological stress.
Endorphins are the famous product of physical exercise — they help create the “buzz” that comes from running, swimming, rowing, yoga and so on.
In laughter, the release comes from an involuntary, repeated muscular exertion that comes from exhaling without drawing a breath, the scientists believe. The exertion leaves us exhausted and thereby triggers the endorphins.
Great apes are also believed to be able to laugh but, unlike humans, they breathe in as well as out when they do so.
The investigators believe the experiments help to understand the physiological and social mechanism of how laughter is generated.
The group seems vital in unleashing the right kind of endorphin-making laughter, they contend.
Previous studies have focussed more on why humans laugh, as opposed to how they do it.
One theory is that laughter helps transmit mating signals or cements bonding between individuals.
Another idea is that, in a group setting, laughter promotes social cooperation and collective identity. It is thus an evolutionary tool to help survival.
The paper appears in Proceedings of the Royal Society B, a journal published by Britain’s de-facto academy of sciences.


16-Sep-2011, 12:49 AM
High cholesterol linked to Alzheimer’s


13 September 2011

People with high cholesterol may have a higher risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease, a study says.
“We found that high cholesterol levels were significantly related to brain plaques associated with Alzheimer’s disease,” said study author Kensuke Sasaki, of Kyushu University in Fukuoka, Japan, in a press release.

For the study, the cholesterol levels were tested on 2,587 people, aged 40 to 79, who had no signs of Alzheimer’s.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/health1_13092011.jpgResearchers also examined 147 autopsied people who died after a long observation period (10 to 15 years). Fifty of the demised, or 34 percent, had been diagnosed with dementia before death, Xinhua reported.
The autopsies looked for plaques and tangles in the brain, both known to be trademark signs of Alzheimer’s disease. Plaques are an accumulation of a form of the protein amyloid, which occurs between nerve cells. Tangles are an accumulation of a different protein, called tau, which occurs inside nerve cells.
People with high cholesterol levels had significantly more brain plaques when compared to those with normal or lower cholesterol levels. A total of 86 percent of people with high cholesterol had brain plaques, compared with only 62 percent of people with low cholesterol levels.
The study found no link between high cholesterol and the tangles that develop in the brain with Alzheimer’s disease.
“Our study clearly makes the point that high cholesterol may contribute directly or indirectly to plaques in the brain,” Sasaki said, “but failed treatment trials of cholesterol-lowering drugs in Alzheimer’s disease means there is no simple link between lowering cholesterol and preventing Alzheimer’s.”
The study will be published Tuesday in Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology.


21-Sep-2011, 10:31 PM
Yawning may be natural ‘brain-cooling’ mechanism
Last Updated On 21 September,2011 About 50 minutes ago
Yawning could serve as a method for regulating brain temperature, according to a study.

The study led by Andrew Gallup, a postdoctoral research associate in Princeton University`s Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, is the first involving humans to show that yawning frequency varies with the season and that people are less likely to yawn when the heat outdoors exceeds body temperature.

This suggests that yawning could be a natural brain-cooling mechanism, Princeton University and University of Arizona researchers reported.

Gallup and his co-author Omar Eldakar documented the yawning frequency of 160 people in the winter and summer in Tucson, Ariz., with 80 people for each season.

They found that participants were more likely to yawn in the winter, as opposed to the summer when ambient temperatures were equal to or exceeding body temperature.

The researchers concluded that warmer temperatures provide no relief for overheated brains, which, according to the thermoregulatory theory of yawning, stay cool via a heat exchange with the air drawn in during a yawn.

They recorded yawning frequency in 160 people in summer and winter in Tucson, Ariz., 80 for each season.

They found that nearly half of participants yawned in winter, opposed to less than a quarter in the summertime.

Rana Tahir Mahmood
27-Sep-2011, 04:17 PM
By realbuzz.com
Whether it’s a one-off occurrence before a big event or a nightly struggle, most of us suffer from insomnia at one time or another. Fortunately, there are many foods that can help you sleep a little easier. To help you relax and catch some Zs, check out our top 5 foods to help you sleep.

Dairy products

If you’re struggling to get a good night’s sleep, foods containing tryptophan should be a first port of call. Tryptophan, an essential amino acid, helps to raise serotonin and melatonin levels in the body, both of which can help induce sleep. While turkey is a famously good source of tryptophan, other (perhaps more bedtime-friendly) sources include dairy products such as yoghurt and milk.

On top of their tryptophan levels, dairy snacks are also a great source of calcium, which helps the brain to use tryptophan to create melatonin. Research has also suggested that a deficiency of calcium in the diet can cause disturbed sleep patterns and a lack of deep (REM) sleep.


While many of us associate oats with breakfast time, they are also the perfect evening snack. Oats are a good natural source of melatonin, which is often taken as a sleep aid due to its ability to help regulate the body's internal clock. They are also another good source of tryptophan, especially when combined with milk.

Furthermore, oats are rich in both calcium and magnesium; two minerals that have been proven to promote good quality sleep. For a warm, soothing snack before bed, try eating a small bowl of porridge to help you drift off, combined with any of the following toppings to help double its effects.


If you suffer from muscle spasms or cramps during the night, it may be that you are deficient in the electrolytes magnesium and potassium, both of which help to relax muscles and keep them functioning properly. Fortunately, bananas are excellent source of both minerals, making them a good bedtime snack, particularly after a heavy exercise session.

As well as being rich in these essential minerals, bananas also contain tryptophan, which can help to promote sleep. Researchers from the University of New England in New South Wales have also found that having a banana before bed can help sufferers of sleep apnea by keeping their throats open and therefore reducing the risk of choking.


For those who have trouble sleeping, you may be familiar with over-the-counter melatonin supplements used to treat insomnia. However, while melatonin can help to regulate sleep, it may be unwise to rely on supplements for long-term use. Fortunately, cherries provide a great natural source of melatonin as well as being excellent for overall health.

A research study published in The Journal of Sleep and Sleep Disorders Research has indicated that consuming tart cherries before bed helped participants sleep faster and easier, making fresh cherries or cherry juice a great natural sleep aid.

Flax seeds

Flax seeds are great for increasing levels of sleep-regulating substance serotonin in the body due to their high levels of both tryptophan and omega-3 fatty acids. Furthermore, the omega-3 fatty acids they contain have been proven to help reduce the anxiety, depression and stress which are leading causes of insomnia, and have been shown to be effective against the condition sleep apnea.

Not only that, flax seeds are a good source of magnesium, which is renowned for its ability to reduce stress due to its relaxing effect on the muscles and nervous system. Magnesium has also been shown to help prevent restless leg syndrome and night terrors; both of which can affect sleep.

Read more from realbuzz.com
The best quick fix diet plan (http://in.lifestyle.yahoo.com/best-quick-fix-diet-plan-102534488.html)
Top tracks to help you sleep at night (http://www.realbuzz.com/articles/top-10-tracks-to-help-you-sleep-at-night/)
How to treat insomnia (http://www.realbuzz.com/articles/how-to-treat-insomnia/)

05-Oct-2011, 09:53 AM
New drug stops hair going grey


4 October 2011

London - A wonder pill which is being developed can stop hair from turning grey, a media report said Monday.
Experts at beauty firm L’Oreal claim it will keep your barnet - the hair - the same natural colour forever, The Sun reported.

They promise the daily drug will not be expensive - and is totally natural because it uses a fruit extract.

Bruno Bernard, head of hair biology at the cosmetics giant, said: ‘People will take it like a dietary supplement. They need to start using the pill before their hair goes grey.’

L’Oreal - which has been developing the drug for more than a decade - says it won’t be available until 2015. And it will take 10 more years before they can prove it works - because it takes that long for grey hairs to sprout, the newspaper said.

05-Oct-2011, 09:54 AM
Fish oil pills unrelated to kids’ braininess

30 September 2011
Despite some evidence that taking fish oil pills during pregnancy can help children’s brain development, a new study suggests that the supplements make no difference in measures of intellect when the kids are six years old.
The findings support the results of an earlier Norwegian study that also found no differences in IQ among seven-year-olds whose mothers did or did not take fish oil supplements while pregnant and breastfeeding.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/oil1_3009.jpgFatty acids, such as docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), that are found in fish and other foods are considered to be important for the developing fetus.
The question, however, has been whether adding more of these fats to mothers’ diets through supplements will further benefit the baby.
In the current experiment, researchers asked expectant mothers during the second half of their pregnancies to take fish oil, fish oil plus a folate supplement, folate alone or a pill that did not contain any supplements.
Nearly seven years later, the team, led by Dr. Cristina Campoy at the University of Granada in Spain, gave intelligence tests to 154 children from this group.
The kids performed similarly on the tests, regardless of what type of pill their mothers had taken during pregnancy.
The results, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, do not mean that fatty acids like DHA are not important.
In fact, the researchers found that the children of women who had high levels of DHA in their red blood cells around the time they gave birth scored above average on the intelligence tests at age six.
These mothers, however, were not necessarily given fish oil supplements. Rather, the result could reflect mothers’ intake of DHA from various sources over a longer period of time, and might mean that long term fatty acid intake “is more beneficial than receiving supplementation alone during pregnancy,” the authors wrote in their study.
A recent study in Australia also found that DHA supplements did not help the visual development of babies (see Reuters Health story of May 26, 2011).
The current study did not measure the diets of the children, something that could have influenced the results, said Dr. Ingrid Helland at Oslo University Hospital, who led the earlier Norwegian research.
“It might be that subtle beneficial effects of (prenatal fish oil) supplementation are being overshadowed by other factors (genetics, social stimulation, nutrition etc),” Helland wrote in an email to Reuters Health.
She is not totally giving up on the idea that taking fish oil might be beneficial.
“If a friend would ask me if she should take supplements or not, I would recommend supplementation, but emphasize that we still do not have any scientific proof that it benefits the child,” said Helland.

05-Oct-2011, 10:58 PM
Higher testosterone to lower heart risks


5 October 2011
Elderly men with naturally higher levels of testosterone may be less likely to suffer a heart attack or stroke than those men with lower levels of the hormone, according to a study.
Findings published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology showed that of 2,400 Swedish men in their 70s and 80s, those with the highest testosterone levels were less likely to suffer a heart attack or stroke over the next several years than men with the lowest levels.
But the results do not prove that testosterone itself deserves the credit, and it’s too soon to recommend testosterone replacement to try to lower heart risks.
‘What we can say is that elderly men with high testosterone levels are relatively protected against cardiovascular events, and therefore lower testosterone is a marker for increased cardiovascular risk,’ said Asa Tivesten, at Sahlgrenska University Hospital in Goteborg, Sweden, who led the study.
It’s known that any serious health condition can lower testosterone levels, as can obesity. But in the study, the researchers accounted for a number of health factors—including the men’s weight, blood pressure and any diagnoses of diabetes, heart disease or stroke at the outset.
Of 604 men in the bottom quarter for levels of the ‘male’ hormone at the study’s start, 21 percent had a heart attack, severe chest pain or stroke over roughly five years.
That compared with roughly 16 percent of the 606 men who started out with the highest testosterone levels.
Even accounting for health factors, men in the highest-testosterone group still showed a 30 percent lower risk of heart disease or stroke compared with the other three-quarters of the study group.
But that doesn’t rule out the possibility that something other than testosterone may be at work, said JoAnn Manson, chief of preventive medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, who was not involved in the study.
‘Low testosterone may be a marker of other health conditions that put men at higher risk of cardiovascular disease,’ she said.
Potential reasons for why higher natural testosterone levels may be good for the heart include the fact that higher testosterone generally means less body fat and more lean muscle.
What’s needed, she added, is evidence from clinical trials that actually test whether testosterone replacement in older men cuts the risk of heart disease and stroke.
Those trials are ongoing and so far, she noted, the results are mixed on whether testosterone replacement improves ‘intermediate’ outcomes like cholesterol or blood sugar levels.
No one yet knows if it affects the ultimate outcomes of cardiovascular disease and lifespan.
‘There are many unanswered questions, and I don’t think this means that men should be trying to boost their testosterone with testosterone replacement therapy,’ she said.
The experience with hormone replacement therapy (HRT) in women offers a cautionary tale.
Before 2002, many women used HRT in the hopes of warding off heart disease and osteoporosis. Then a large US clinical trial found that women given pills containing estrogen and progesterone actually had higher risks of blood clots, heart attack, stroke and breast cancer than women given placebo pills.
Now HRT is largely used only for treating severe hot flashes—and then, only at the lowest dose and for the shortest time possible.
‘So there are concerns about the risks in men,’ Manson said.
Among those are the potential for testosterone to contribute to blood clots, liver damage or prostate cancer.
‘This is a study of endogenous (natural) hormone production. It does not provide information about what is happening when hormones are given as a therapy,’ Tiveston said. SOURCE:bit.ly/oDvZxv (http://bit.ly/oDvZxv)

20-Oct-2011, 03:55 AM
Health food for heart patients, diabetics

17 October 2011
People suffering from heart diseases and diabetes should eat a lot of beans, soybean, tofu and lentils as these are rich in proteins and low on fat and cholesterol, an expert said.
With the number Indians suffering from diabetes and heart ailments on the rise, an interactive cooking session -- 'Healthy food for healthy heart' -- was conducted by nutritionist Ishi Khosla at the Max Super Speciality Hospital here.

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/health1_17102011.jpg"To eat is a necessity but to eat intelligently is an art. We want people to change their eating habits by choosing which foods to eat more and which to limit," Khosla said.

The nutritionist conducted a cooking session where simple, quick and easy to make recipes for people suffering from heart diseases and diabetes were shared.

"The recipes shared today are not only healthy but appealing by experimenting with ingredients like beans, soybean, tofu and lentils, which are rich in protein and contain less fat and no cholesterol."

According to Khosla, people do not opt for healthier substitutes till it is too late.

"People should opt for green tea, whole grains like brown rice and barley. The problem with us is that we never value health is till sickness comes," said Khosla.

20-Oct-2011, 03:57 AM
Chocolate lovers have fewer strokes

12 October 2011
A sweet tooth isn’t necessarily bad for your health—at least not when it comes to chocolate, hints a new study.
Researchers studying more than 33,000 Swedish women found that the more chocolate women said they ate, the lower their risk of stroke.
The results add to a growing body of evidence linking cocoa consumption to heart health, but they aren’t a free pass to gorge on chocolate.
‘Given the observational design of the study, findings from this study cannot prove that it’s chocolate that lowers the risk of stroke,’ Susanna Larsson from Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm told Reuters Health in an email.
While she believes chocolate has health benefits, she also warned that eating too much of it could be counterproductive.
‘Chocolate should be consumed in moderation as it is high in calories, fat, and sugar,’ she said. ‘As dark chocolate contains more cocoa and less sugar than milk chocolate, consumption of dark chocolate would be more beneficial.’
Larsson and her colleagues, whose findings appear in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, tapped into data from a mammography study that included self-reports of how much chocolate women ate in 1997. The women ranged in age from 49 to 83 years.
Over the next decade, there were 1,549 strokes, and the more chocolate women ate, the lower their risk.
Among those with the highest weekly chocolate intake—more than 45 grams—there were 2.5 strokes per 1,000 women per year. That figure was 7.8 per 1,000 among women who ate the least (less than 8.9 grams per week).
Scientists speculate that substances known as flavonoids, in particular so-called flavanols, may be responsible for chocolate’s apparent effects on health.
According to Larsson, flavonoids have been shown to cut high blood pressure, a risk factor for stroke, and improve other blood factors linked to heart health. Whether that theoretical benefit translates into real-life benefits remains to be proven by rigorous studies, however.
Nearly 800,000 Americans suffer a stroke every year, with about a sixth of them dying of it and many more left disabled. For those at high risk, doctors recommend blood pressure medicine, quitting smoking, exercising more and eating a healthier diet—but so far chocolate isn’t on the list.
SOURCE: bit.ly/qhsaZ0 (http://bit.ly/qhsaZ0)

20-Oct-2011, 04:02 AM
Risks of vitamin supplements revealed


17 October 2011

WASHINGTON — New research is prompting a fresh look at the value of vitamin supplements, with some surprising results indicating that taking too many supplements of some could be harmful.
The research is forcing scientists to rethink the use of supplements with antioxidants, which had been seen as beneficial in preventing cancer, heart disease and other ailments.

“Everybody is confused,” admitted Toren Finkel, head of the Center for Molecular Medicine at the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
While logic would seem to dictate that taking vitamins and antioxidants should help fight illness and disease, Finkel said in an interview that the clinical data “are pretty consistently showing no benefit.”
“So that means we have to go back and think about some of the assumptions we have made along the way in terms of what the mechanism for these diseases are and how things like oxidants play a role in those diseases,” he told AFP.
Finkel explained that while it has long been believed that oxidants — free radicals produced by the body or introduced through external sources such as pollution — were unhealthy, the research paints a more complex picture.
“You have to go back to the lab and try to design experiments you can do a little simpler with cells or animals... to better understand the role of oxidants and vitamins,” he said.
“For years, we were using these supplements without knowing the effects on the body.”
A study published on October 11 in the United States indicates a 17 percent increase in the risk of developing prostate cancer among men who take high doses of vitamin E.
Another recent US study conducted among women and published on October 10 revealed that multivitamins — commonly taken in the United States — were useless and actually gradually contributed to a higher risk of mortality.
As far back as 2007, researchers had established a link between taking selenium supplements and an increased risk of adult diabetes.
For David Schardt, a nutritionist at the non-profit Center for Science in the Public Interest, the problem is that “people think more is better and that (supplements) are harmless.”
“We are finding out that some of these vitamins taken alone in large amounts may have effects we did not predict, we did not understand and we did not anticipate,” Schardt said.
He added that the country has “a lot of people who believe, almost like a religion, in their vitamins” — a faith encouraged by an industry that generates $20 billion a year in the United States, where more than half of the population takes some kind of vitamin supplement.
Moreover, US manufacturers are “free to say almost anything they want” about the virtues of supplements, Schardt explained, adding: “The only thing the Food and Drug Administration does not let them make are claims about disease.”
Patsy Brannon, a Cornell University professor who served on an NIH panel on multivitamins, mineral supplements and chronic diseases, said that those who take supplements are often those already getting nutrients from their food.
“So the people who are choosing supplements are maybe the people who don’t need them,” she said. “So they are not thinking about their total intake and that I think is a concern.”
Experts agree that multivitamins and other supplements are useful for certain groups such as pregnant women and elderly people suffering from vitamin deficiencies.
But for the general population, a healthy balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables and fiber as well as animal-based protein will provide the proper vitamins and nutrients needed, Brannon said.
A study published in late August in the Journal of Nutrition showed that a significant number of Americans did not eat well and did not take vitamin supplements.
Twenty-five percent of respondents had a vitamin C deficiency, 34 percent were not getting enough vitamin A and 60 percent needed more vitamin E. All three are found in fruits and vegetables.

20-Oct-2011, 04:14 AM
Fiber Rich Food for Healthy You Fiber rich food is very essential for the body and should be included into our daily diet. Consuming nutritious fiber rich foods is a great way to improve our digestive system and fiber rich food also helps in lowering the levels of cholesterol in the body. It is found that, foods that have high fiber content are generally a good source of essential nutrients as well.
Fibers are of two types:

Soluble(are able to dissolve in water): They help in decreasing the risk of cardiovascular diseases.

Insoluble(are not able to dissolve in water): They help in reducing the risk of diabetes and since they are natural laxatives, they also help in shortening the transition of waste through the intestinal tract of human body.

Sources of Fiber
All pulses, black-eyed peas, split peas, kidney beans (rajma) and black beans. Sunflower and sesame seeds, chestnuts, peanuts, almonds, and dried coconuts are also rich in fiber. Fiber rich cereals include whole wheat, rice, bajra, oats, maize, barley and jowar. So, to have fiber rich food, start including fiber rich food to your eating habits.

Advantages of Having Fiber Food
Fiber rich food is very much essential for women's health, as they need to perform many tasks in day to day lives. Intake of fiber is also important because it helps in relieving chronic problems like constipation, maintains the level of cholesterol and keeps the weight under control. It helps to prevent diseases and has a positive influence on triglycerides, etc. It is believed to protect us from colon cancer. Actually when sources of fiber are included in our diet, the level of sugar is regulated to avoid diabetes. Consumption of fiber has also helped to prevent gallstones and


20-Oct-2011, 04:15 AM
The Importance of Fibers and Fiber-Rich Foods (http://fiber-rich-foods.blogspot.com/2011/04/importance-of-fibers-and-fiber-rich.html)

In this article I will reveal some little known facts about the magic weight loss fibers and the beneficial effect they have over your body.

First of all let me explain what fiber is:

Fiber is an indigestible part of all plant foods (it is used by plants to build their cell walls). It is found in fruits, vegetables, grains and beans. Your digestive system cannot stomach fiber (also known as cellulose), so it is excreted undigested.

Well, you may think you don’t need fiber, because it’s excreted undigested, but that’s not true.

Let's imagine the following picture:
You overeat at least once or twice a week, more often at weekends, and your regular menu doesn't include much fiber. Well, this might be your life style; however you should consider that it may cause you lots of health problems like:

digestive troubles
high cholesterol
heart disease
colon cancer

What happens when you constantly overeat? You start feeling:

discomfort stomach aches
gases in the digestive tract
you got tired faster
can't concentrate on what you're doing

I mean you become less productive at work and more irritable at home. Besides all this, you gain weight and that’s the moment when you realize you have a problem.

You start visiting doctors and diet experts, who recommend you expensive medication, like pills and other kind of drugs, which are effective only while you are taking them; or they will make you start a diet plan and may recommend you some fitness procedures to lose weight.

Well, I’m not saying that none of these procedures will work for you. Of course some of them will work; it depends strictly on the individual. But there is always an easier, healthier and cheaper way to solve such problems.

In order to solve a problem, you should first find the reason for it. In this case it’s the lowered intake of fiber-rich foods and respectively – the higher intake of foods that contain no fiber (like meat or any other animal products). The average amount of fiber intake is about 25-30 grams per day. Unfortunately most people regular diets include less than 10-15 grams daily.

You should start consuming more of these fiber-rich foods like:

all bran cereal
beans (kidney and butter)
sweet corn
wholemeal brown bread
red cabbage
baked potato with skin
oranges and many others

I can’t list them all, but I can advise you to eat more beans, grains, fruits and vegetables, and I think that’s enough for you to get the picture.

There are two types of fiber – soluble and insoluble. If you start eating more food rich in both types of fiber, you’ll be amazed of its beneficial effects over your digestive system, your body, your health and way of life.
Soluble fiber dissolves in water in the intestinal tract, it forms glue like gel, which softens stools (no more constipation) and slows down stomach emptying, which means better digestion (no more indigestion).
You feel fuller longer – that’s the effect that helps you eat less food, which is rich in fiber, and your digestive tract uses more energy to digest it. This way your body burns additional calories and you can lose weight. Of course it takes some time to reach your desired weight, but you won’t be starving, and yet you’ll be losing weight – isn’t it great?

Insoluble fiber acts in the gastrointestinal tract. It’s an excellent natural laxative, because of its abilities to hold onto water and to push waste faster along the intestines (leaving less time for cancerous substances in your stool to have contact with the lining of the bowel) – this way fiber decreases the risk of colon cancer and also helps prevent hemorrhoids by adding bulk and softening stools.

Soluble fiber is also known to help lowering cholesterol and the amount of insulin needed to process the blood sugar after eating.

At the end I'd like to tell you that you won't be sorry if you start eating more fiber-rich foods.
Like many other people I used to take not enough fiber, and I suffered stomach aches after every meal, sometimes they lasted more than an hour.

Then I started to eat one fruit more than usual everyday, gradually increasing the amounts of fruits and other fiber-rich foods.

I must admit that it really worked for me and now fiber-rich food is the most important part of my daily menu (apples, oranges and peas are my personal favor).

20-Oct-2011, 04:16 AM
Fiber Rich Foods (http://fiber-rich-foods.blogspot.com/2011/03/fiber-rich-foods.html)

Fiber is an extremely beneficial element which along with helping in weight reduction programs, also aids in providing various health benefits to a person. One’s digestive system cannot digest fiber and thus it is excreted undigested. This makes many people think that fiber is an unwanted waste in the body. However, the truth is completely different as fibers are extremely important for the overall health of a person as it aids in the smooth functioning of the digestive system thereby preventing various problems like constipation and other gastrointestinal disorders. Given below is a list of important food items which are rich in fiber and which thus must be included in one’s diet.


Fiber rich food items basically include all bran cereal, beans, peas and cabbage amongst others. While grain products like whole grain breads, buns and muffins are rich in fiber content, there are also certain high fiber fruits whose intake can lead to an overall enhancement of one’s health. These include dried fruits like apricots and dates along with other natural fruits like blackberries, strawberries, oranges, apple and pear. Fresh vegetables and fresh fruits with skins are good source of high fibers and thus one should make it a point to include broccoli, spinach and green peas in one’s diet.


Along with increasing one’s content of fiber in the diet, one should accompany this fiber intake with an increase in water. Moreover, one should gradually increase one’s intake of fiber and should not get into the haste of include huge amounts of fiber to attain immediate effect. In addition, increasing the intake of foods high in fiber is better than using fiber supplements. Thus, eating healthy and intelligently can help a person to live a healthy and a fit life without the threat of diseases and ailments.

20-Oct-2011, 05:02 AM
Eating Purple Fruits Could Help Body to Fight Diseases Such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s !!! (http://green-buzz.net/news/eating-purple-fruits-could-help-body-to-fight-diseases-such-as-alzheimers-and-parkinsons/)http://green-buzz.net/wp-content/uploads/2010/12/Blueberries-300x206.png

A new research found that drinking green tea and eating purple fruits could help the body to fight Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and multiple sclerosis.

The foods, such as blueberries, act by soaking up a harmful iron compounds.
The study from Professor Douglas Kell at the University of Manchester, published in the journal Archives of Toxicology, suggests that iron may result in the body producing free radical that damage the body.
The toxins, called hydroxyl radicals, may be the cause behind degenerative diseases.
“Much of modern biology has been concerned with the role of different genes in human disease. The importance of iron may have been missed because there is no gene for iron as such,” prof. Douglas said.
Head of research at the Alzheimer’s Research Trust, Dr Simon Ridley commented on the authour’s report: “It is important to note that this author’s report does not describe the results of a new study, but puts forward one theory about the possible causes of Alzheimer’s disease. We need to see more research into this theory before we’ll know if iron has any role to play in developing dementia.

20-Oct-2011, 09:32 PM
Keep tab on osteoporosis painkiller


20 October 2011, 12:56 PM
Even as researchers try to confirm the side effects of osteoporosis pain-relieving drugs on women, doctors say continuous consumption of the drug bisphosphonates can make the bones brittle and lead to untimely fractures.

Even as researchers try to confirm the side effects of osteoporosis pain-relieving drugs on women, doctors say continuous consumption of the drug bisphosphonates can make the bones brittle and lead to untimely fractures.
With osteoporosis likely to affect 25 million people in the country, the magic prescription to fight osteoporosis could be a healthy diet, exercise and ample sunlight, experts said ahead of World Osteoporosis Day Thursday.

Oct 20 is World Osteoporosis Day http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/bone_2010.jpg

”Although it is not yet confirmed how badly the drug affects the bones, it is advisable to not use the medicine for a very long period. The medicines can make the bones brittle over a period of time,” said Harshavardhan K. Hegde, director of orthopaedics at Fortis hospital in the capital.

Bisphosphonates is sold under the names Actonel, Reclast and Boniva across the globe. According to reports by a medical journal, women reported the breakage in thigh bone after repeated use of the drug.

”What is possible is that the patient take the drug for a period of four years, and then take a break of six months,” Hegde added.

Osteoporosis, a bone disease caused due to thinning of bone tissue and loss of bone density over time, is likely to affect around 36 million people by 2013.

With the younger population heading towards a sedentary lifestyle, experts say the regime to fight the disease remains the same - a diet including green-leafy vegetables, cheese, meat, milk, vitamin D through sunlight, exercise, and avoid smoking.

”Sunlight is a must to maintain bone strength. These days Indian women are very wary of going out in the sun, and even if they do they have sunscreen mask over their face,” Hegde said.

While women are more vulnerable to the disease, experts say a little more caution towards their 30s can help as the hormonal imbalance begins by that age.

”Men are also predisposed to osteoporosis. But women should take care as after menopause, the oestrogen level comes down and the bone strength becomes weaker,” said H.S Chhabra, chief of spine and medical director at the Indian Spinal Injuries Centre in Vasant Kunj.

”Women with diabetes, a family history in osteoporosis, and with symptoms of knee pain, and swelling should be cautious,” Chhabra added.


20-Oct-2011, 11:17 PM
Five Foods That Can Trigger a Stroke

Few things feel more terrifying and random than a stroke, which can strike without warning. And fear of stroke -- when a blood vessel in or leading to the brain bursts or is blocked by a blood clot, starving brain cells of oxygen and nutrients -- is well founded. After all, stroke is the number-three killer in the U.S., affecting more than 700,000 people each year. Here are five foods that cause the damage that leads to stroke.

1. Crackers, chips, and store-bought pastries and baked goods

Muffins, doughnuts, chips, crackers, and many other baked goods are high in trans fats, which are hydrogenated oils popular with commercial bakeries because they stay solid at room temperature, so the products don't require refrigeration. Also listed on labels as "partially hydrogenated" or hydrogenated oils, trans fats are found in all kinds of snack foods, frozen foods, and baked goods, including salad dressings, microwave popcorn, stuffing mixes, frozen tater tots and French fries, cake mixes, and whipped toppings. They're also what makes margarine stay in a solid cube. The worst offenders are fried fast foods such as onion rings, French fries, and fried chicken.
Why it's bad

For years scientists have known trans fats are dangerous artery-blockers, upping the concentrations of lipids and bad cholesterol in the blood and lowering good cholesterol. Now we can add stroke to the list of dangers. This year researchers at the University of North Carolina found that women who ate 7 grams of trans fat each day -- about the amount in two doughnuts or half a serving of French fries -- had 30 percent more strokes (the ischemic type, caused by blocked blood flow to the brain) than women who ate just 1 gram a day. Another recent study, also in women, found that trans fats promoted inflammation and higher levels of C-reactive protein, which have been linked to an increased risk of diabetes, heart disease, and stroke.
What to do

Aim to limit trans fats to no more than 1 or 2 grams a day -- and preferably none. Avoid fast-food French fries and other fried menu items and study packaged food labels closely. Even better, bake your own cookies, cakes, and other snacks. When you can't, search out "health-food" alternative snacks, such as Terra brand potato chips and traditional whole grain crackers such as those made by Finn, Wasa, AkMak, Ryvita, and Lavasch.

2. Smoked and processed meats

Whether your weakness is pastrami, sausage, hot dogs, bacon, or a smoked turkey sandwich, the word from the experts is: Watch out.
Why it's bad

Smoked and processed meats are nasty contributors to stroke risk in two ways: The preserving processes leave them packed with sodium, but even worse are the preservatives used to keep processed meats from going bad. Sodium nitrate and nitrite have been shown by researchers to directly damage blood vessels, causing arteries to harden and narrow. And of course damaged, overly narrow blood vessels are exactly what you don't want if you fear stroke.

Many studies have linked processed meats to coronary artery disease (CAD); one meta-analysis in the journal Circulation calculated a 42-percent increase in coronary heart disease for those who eat one serving of processed meat a day. Stroke is not the only concern for salami fans; cancer journals have reported numerous studies in the past few years showing that consumption of cured and smoked meats is linked with increased risk of diabetes and higher incidences of numerous types of cancer, including leukemia.
What to do

If a smoked turkey or ham sandwich is your lunch of choice, try to vary your diet, switching to tuna, peanut butter, or other choices several days a week. Or cook turkey and chicken yourself and slice it thin for sandwiches.

How to Tell if Someone Is Having a Stroke

3. Diet soda

Although replacing sugary drinks with diet soda seems like a smart solution for keeping weight down -- a heart-healthy goal -- it turns out diet soda is likely a major bad guy when it comes to stroke.
Why it's bad

People who drink a diet soda a day may up their stroke risk by 48 percent. A Columbia University study presented at the American Stroke Association's 2011 International Stroke Conference followed 2,500 people ages 40 and older and found that daily diet soda drinkers had 60 percent more strokes, heart attacks, and coronary artery disease than those who didn't drink diet soda. Researchers don't know exactly how diet soda ups stroke risk -- and are following up with further studies -- but nutritionists are cautioning anyone concerned about stroke to cut out diet soda pop.
What to do

Substitute more water for soda in your daily diet. It's the healthiest thirst-quencher by far, researchers say. If you don't like water, try lemonade, iced tea, or juice.

4. Red meat

This winter, when the respected journal Stroke published a study showing that women who consumed a large portion of red meat each day had a 42-percent higher incidence of stroke, it got nutrition experts talking. The information that red meat, with its high saturated fat content, isn't healthy for those looking to prevent heart disease and stroke wasn't exactly news. But the percentage increase (almost 50 percent!) was both startling and solid; the researchers arrived at their finding after following 35,000 Swedish women for ten years.
Why it's bad

Researchers have long known that the saturated fat in red meat raises the risk of stroke and heart disease by gradually clogging arteries with a buildup of protein plaques. Now it turns out that hemoglobin, the ingredient that gives red meat its high iron content, may pose a specific danger when it comes to stroke. Researchers are investigating whether blood becomes thicker and more viscous as a result of the consumption of so-called heme iron, specifically upping the chance of strokes.
What to do

Aim to substitute more poultry -- particularly white meat -- and fish, which are low in heme iron, for red meat. Also, choose the heart-healthiest sources of protein whenever you can, especially beans, legumes, nuts, tofu, and nonfat dairy.

5. Canned soup and prepared foods

Whether it's canned soup, canned spaghetti, or healthy-sounding frozen dinners, prepared foods and mixes rely on sodium to increase flavor and make processed foods taste fresher. Canned soup is cited by nutritionists as the worst offender; one can of canned chicken noodle soup contains more than 1,100 mg of sodium, while many other varieties, from clam chowder to simple tomato, have between 450 and 800 mg per serving. Compare that to the American Heart and Stroke Association's recommendation of less than1,500 mg of sodium daily and you'll see the problem. In fact, a nutritionist-led campaign, the National Salt Reduction Initiative, calls on food companies to reduce the salt content in canned soup and other products by 20 percent in the next two years.
Why it's bad

Salt, or sodium as it's called on food labels, directly affects stroke risk. In one recent study, people who consumed more than 4,000 mg of sodium daily had more than double the risk of stroke compared to those who ate 2,000 mg or less. Yet the Centers for Disease Control estimate that most Americans eat close to 3,500 mg of sodium per day. Studies show that sodium raises blood pressure, the primary causative factor for stroke. And be warned: Sodium wears many tricky disguises, which allow it to hide in all sorts of foods that we don't necessarily think of as salty. Some common, safe-sounding ingredients that really mean salt:

Baking soda

Baking powder

MSG (monosodium glutamate)

Disodium phosphate

Sodium alginate

What to do

Make your own homemade soups and entrees, then freeze individual serving-sized portions. Buy low-sodium varieties, but read labels carefully, since not all products marked "low sodium" live up to that promise.


27-Oct-2011, 11:26 PM
Eating fish powers brain

25 October 2011
LONDON - Eating fish, which is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, boosts blood flow to the brain and improves its performance.
New research shows it can also quicken reaction times and reduce levels of tiredness in the brain even after performing tough tasks.

British researchers say the findings could be particularly important for the elderly as these have the potential to stave off dementia, the British Journal of Nutrition reports.

They conducted two studies to examine the effects of oily fish. Volunteers were given fish-oil supplements rich in DHA, an omega-3 fatty acid, reports the Telegraph.

Results of one showed that taking omega-3 supplements during mental tasks boosted blood flow to active areas of the brain.

Another study looked at the impact of giving two fish-oil supplements to a group of volunteers aged 18-35 over three months.

Results showed little difference in blood flow to the brain, but faster reaction times and lower levels of tiredness after being given a task to complete.

Study author Philippa Jackson from Northumbria University, Britain, said: “These findings could have implications for mental function later on in life.”

27-Oct-2011, 11:26 PM
Low fat, fish oil diet slows down cancer

26 October 2011
WASHINGTON - A low-fat, fish-oil combo diet, taken weeks before prostate removal, slows down prostate cancer growth as compared to a traditional, high-fat Western diet.

The study, conducted by researchers at the University of California Los Angeles’ Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Centre, also found that men on such diet were able to change the composition of their cell membranes in both healthy and cancerous cells in the prostate gland.

They had increased levels of omega-3 fatty acids from fish oil and decreased levels of omega-6 fatty acids from corn oil in the cell membranes, which may directly affect the biology of the cells, said William Aronson, study co-author and Jonsson Centre researcher, the journal Cancer Prevention Research reports.

The study also found that blood obtained from patients after the low-fat, fish oil diet programme slowed the growth of prostate cancer cells in a test tube as compared to blood from men on the Western diet, which did not slow cancer growth, according to a Jonsson Centre statement.

”The finding that the low-fat, fish oil diet reduced the number of rapidly dividing cells in the prostate cancer tissue is important because the rate at which the cells are dividing can be predictive of future cancer progression,” Aronson said.

”The lower the rate of proliferation, the lesser the chances the cancer will spread outside the prostate where it is much harder to treat.”

27-Oct-2011, 11:28 PM
Turn to the sun for stronger bones
Farhana Chowdhury

24 October 2011
DUBAI - The incidence of osteoporosis among residents in the UAE partly owes itself to vitamin D deficiency and Dr Mustafa Izzi, the Head of the Emirates Osteoporosis Society, revealed that about 78 per cent of the total population, notably Emirati women, suffer from lack of the essential vitamin despite the country’s bountiful sunshine.
“People in the UAE choose to avoid the sun in any possible way because of the hot weather. Residents block sun rays out by staying indoors or under sheltered areas. Cars have tinted windows and many apply sunscreens with high SPF — all which avoids the absorption of the sun’s rays into the skin for the production of vitamin D.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/health_24102011.jpgThe conservative clothing that Emirati women wear also naturally blocks out sunlight, so they are most susceptible to vitamin D deficiency. There are instances where genetics play a role in the development of osteoporosis but the vitamin component holds a big part,” said Dr Izzi, who is also a consultant dermatologist at Welcare Hospital.
Vitamin D is necessary for maintaining good bone health and it is an inexpensive way to decrease fracture risk.
The International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF), a non-profit NGO dedicated to the worldwide fight against osteoporosis, issued a new audit report on Saturday that revealed the rising concerns of osteoporosis in the Middle East and Africa Region. The report aims to gather data and provide statistics to examine the community, costs and burden of osteoporosis in individual countries as well as collectively across the region, and helps allocate resources through the cooperation of local government authorities.
“Osteoporosis is a ‘silent disease’. About one-third of people who are over the age of 50 in the UAE suffer from osteoporosis, according to a sample study of both locals and expatriates done by an Al Ain-based university. That is just seven per cent of the total population of the country but it is of serious concern to educate residents of the situation. One of our recommendations is collaboration with health authorities and the society to identify osteoporosis as a national health priority alongside obesity, thalassemia and cancer. We are trying to set up a national registry for hip fracture in the UAE,” he said.
Due to economic development, non-communicable diseases have become the leading cause of mortality and morbidity in the region.
Judy Stenmark, Chief Operating Officer at the International Osteoporosis Foundation, said that mortality rates after hip fracture may be high in the MENA region compared to Western countries, but there are no proper statistics available to set numbers in stone and this is an obstacle to improvement of services for the treatment of the bone disease.
“To date, we know that about 25 per cent of hip fracture patients, which is the most serious result of osteoporosis, die within six months due to complications while the number of patients with the condition in the MENA region are slightly higher, around 30 to 35 per cent. The rates may be as high as two to 2.5 fold high in certain population within this region. We need to have something to work with before we can make any progress. We need to know the size of the problem so health resources can be allocated accordingly and this audit, set for the first time in the MENA region, aims to do just that,” she said.
What To Do Three essential steps to set a strong foundation for healthy bones and muscles:

ensure you have enough vitamin D intake (through safe exposure to sunlight, diet, and supplementation if required, particularly if you are over 60)
eat a calcium and protein-rich diet
keep active with daily weight-bearing and muscle-strengthening physical activity (Provided by The International Osteoporosis Foundation)

Gravity Of The Problem A section dedicated to the UAE in the International Osteoporosis Foundation’s (IOF) audit report 2011 revealed:

There is an estimated 2.25 osteoporotic hip fractures per 1000 population while no national registry of hip fractures has been initiated in UAE.
It is estimated that 24 per cent of people have osteopenia and 2.5 per cent of people have osteoporosis.
About 90 per cent of the hip fractures are surgically treated. The average number of bed days is 14 days per fracture.
Direct hospital costs are estimated to be US$12,000 per patient and loss of productivity to the workplace is estimated to be 90 days.
Today, osteoporosis is not yet recognised as a major health problem in the UAE and there are no government-approved guidelines.
The level of awareness among health care professionals and allied health professionals 
is estimated as medium to 
poor except in some 
specialties like rheumatology 
or endocrinology.


30-Oct-2011, 04:31 AM
Watermelon reduces hardening of arteries

29 October 2011, 9:03 AM
Watermelon is good in the case of atherosclerosis or hardening of arteries.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/watermelon_29102011.jpgThe model used for a study involved mice with diet-induced high cholesterol. One group was just given water to drink while the experimental group was given watermelon juice.

By week eight of the study conducted by the University of Kentucky, mice given watermelon juice had lower body weight than the other group due to decrease of fat mass, according to a varsity statement.
Atherosclerosis occurs when fat, cholesterol and other substances build up in the walls of arteries and form hard structures called plaques. They experienced no decrease in lean mass.
“Melons have many health benefits,” said lead investigator Sibu Saha from Kentucky University. “Our ultimate goal is to identify bioactive compounds that would improve human health.”

30-Oct-2011, 04:33 AM
Not your fault! Hormones
linked to weight regain
Malcolm Ritter (AP)

29 October 2011
Any dieter knows that it’s hard to keep off weight you’ve lost. Now a study finds that even a year after dieters shed a good chunk of weight quickly, their hormones were still insisting, “Eat! Eat! Eat!”
The findings suggest that dieters who have regained weight are not just slipping back into old habits, but are struggling against a persistent biological urge.
“People who regain weight should not be harsh on themselves, as eating is our most basic instinct,” Joseph Proietto of the University of Melbourne in Australia, an author of the study, said in an email. The research appears in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Weight regain is a common problem for dieters. To study what drives it, Proietto and his colleagues enrolled 50 overweight or obese patients in a 10-week diet programme in Australia. They wanted to see what would happen in people who lost at least 10 per cent of their body weight. Ultimately, only 34 people lost that much and stuck with the study long enough for analysis.
The programme was intense. On average, the participants lost almost 30 pounds (13.6 kilograms) during the 10 weeks, faster than the standard advice of losing 1 or 2 pounds (0.45 to 0.91 kilograms) a week. They took in 500 to 550 calories a day, using a meal replacement called Optifast plus vegetables for eight weeks. Then for two weeks they were gradually reintroduced to ordinary foods.
Despite counseling and written advice about how to maintain their new weights, they gained an average of 12 pounds (5.4 kilograms) back over the next year. So they were still at lower weights than when they started.
The scientists checked the blood levels of nine hormones that influence appetite. The key finding came from comparing the hormone levels from before the weight-loss program to one year after it was over. Six hormones were still out of whack in a direction that would boost hunger.
The dieters also rated themselves as feeling hungrier after meals at the one-year mark, compared to what they reported before the diet program began.
Experts not connected to the study said the persistent effect on hormone levels was not surprising, and that it probably had nothing to do with the speed of the weight loss.
People who lose less than 10 per cent of body weight would probably show the same thing, though to a lesser degree, said Dr. George Bray of the Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
A key message of the study is that “it’s better not to gain weight than to try to lose it,” Bray said. Why would a dieter’s body rebel against weight loss? It’s an evolutionary holdover from earlier times, when weight loss could threaten survival and reproduction, says Dr. Rudolph Leibel, an obesity expert at Columbia University in New York. So “it’s not surprising at all” that our bodies would fight back for at least a year, he said. “This is probably a more or less permanent response.”
People who lose significant weight not only gain bigger appetite but also burn fewer calories than normal, creating “a perfect storm for weight regain,” Leibel said.
He said avoiding weight regain appears to be a fundamentally different problem from losing weight in the first place, and that researchers should pay more attention to it.
The study was supported by the Australian government, medical professional groups and a private foundation. Proietto served on a medical advisory board of Nestle, maker of Optifast, until last year.

10-Nov-2011, 11:35 PM
Take Vitamin B to lower work stress


10 November 2011, 12:19 PM
Taking more Vitamin B, found in meat, beans and wholegrains, seems to significantly lower work-related stress.
These were the findings of a three-month trial, conducted by Con Stough, professor at Swimburne University of Technology, where participants were given a course of either high dose vitamin B supplements or a placebo.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/vitbnew_1011.jpg“By lowering stress, we also lower the risk of health problems such as cardiovascular disease, depression and anxiety,” Stough was quoted as saying by the journal Human Psychopharmacology.
Researchers assessed 60 participants against factors such as personality, work demands, mood, anxiety and strain and then re-evaluated them at 30 and 90 days, said Stough, according to a Swimburne statement.
“At the end of the three-month period, those in the Vitamin B group reported much lower levels of work stress than they did at the beginning of the trial,” Stough said.
“On the other hand, those in the placebo group showed no significant change,” he added.
“Vitamin B, which is found in whole unprocessed foods such as meat, beans and wholegrains, is integral to the synthesis of neurotransmitters critical to psychological wellbeing,” he said.
“But the reality is that many people don’t get enough Vitamin B from their diet, so they are turning to vitamin supplementation,” added Stough.

10-Nov-2011, 11:39 PM
Saffron may help protect brain cells

8 November 2011

WASHINGTON - A key ingredient in the Indian spice saffron may potentially protect brain cells from diseases involving neuro-inflammation, such as multiple sclerosis (MS).
Inflammation is a protective attempt by an organism to remove injurious stimuli such as pathogens, damaged cells or irritants and to initiate the healing process.

MS is characterized by inflamed brain (neurons) that have lost their protective insulation, known as myelin, The Journal of Immunology reports.

Symptoms range from mild to severe and include visual disturbances, muscle spasms, loss of sensation, speech impediment, dizziness, depression, etc, according to a University of Alberta statement.

Chris Power, from the University of Alberta, who led the research, said: ‘We found there is a compound in saffron, known as crocin, that exerts a protective effect in brain cell cultures and other models of MS. It prevented damage to cells that make myelin in the brain.’

‘This research highlights a potential treatment role for crocin in diseases involving chronic neuroinflammation - something that had not been recognized until now,’ concludes Power.

10-Nov-2011, 11:43 PM
Eat nuts daily for healthy heart


7 November 2011

Eating nuts helps lowers heart disease risk in people with metabolic syndrome (MetS) or those with excess abdominal fat, high blood sugar and high blood pressure, say researchers.
MetS symptoms increase the risk of developing type 2 diabetes and heart disease, the Journal of Proteome Research reported, citing a statement from the University of Barcelona.
Cristina Andres-Lacueva and colleagues from the varsity with the Human Nutrition Unit of the Rovira i Virgili University explain that the rise in obesity worldwide means more and more patients have MetS.
To check the benefits of nut consumption, researchers put 22 MetS patients on a nut-enriched diet for 12 weeks and compared them to another group of 20 patients who avoided nuts.
The scientists analyzed the compounds excreted in patients’ urine and found evidence of several healthful changes, including a boost in patients’ levels of serotonin metabolites.
Serotonin, a chemical, helps decrease feelings of hunger, makes people feel happier and improves heart health, the researchers said.

10-Nov-2011, 11:47 PM
Watch out for early signs of hearing loss

(Staff Reporter)

5 November 2011
DUBAI - People who have a hearing loss are sometimes unaware of their problem, especially in a situation where the hearing loss is gradual, according to a doctor.
“Their close associates are the first ones to notice it. When there is a problem with one or more parts of the ear or ears, one may not be able to hear clearly or hear nothing at all. This condition is called hearing loss or hearing impairment,” said Dr Shaharyar Mallick, ENT Specialist of DM Healthcare’s Aster Medical Centre, Karama.
The ear consists of three sections, the outer ear, middle ear and inner ear. They work together to collect and process sounds. First the outer ear picks up the sound waves, which is passed on to the outer ear canal. These waves hit the eardrum and it starts vibrating. These vibrations in turn move three tiny bones called hammer, anvil and stirrup. They carry sound into the inner ear. The sound vibrations then travel to cochlea, filled with a liquid and lined with cells that have thousands of tiny hairs on their surface. Sound vibrations cause these tiny hairs to move. The cochlea comprises of inner and outer cells. The outer hair cells gather the sound information and amplify it. The inner cells carry this sound information to the hearing nerve, which in turn sends it to the brain.
It is time to see a doctor when one experiences: Muffled hearing, not being able to distinguish specific words when someone is speaking, especially when there is competing voices or noises in the background, listening to the television or radio at higher volume than in the past, avoiding conversation and social interaction for fear of lack of hearing, ringing, roaring, hissing, or buzzing in the ear, ear pain, itching, or irritation, pus or fluid leaking from the ear, vertigo, which can occur with hearing loss, if one feels something is blocking sound from moving to the inner ear. The different types of hearing loss are conductive, sensory, and neural.
Hearing loss can be congenital when a person is born with parts of the ear that didn’t form correctly and don’t work well. It is the most common birth defect amounting to 3 in 1,000 babies being born with hearing impairment. Other problems can happen later because of an injury or illness.
Ear infections can cause hearing loss. Permanent hearing loss is rare from an ear infection.
“Hearing aids and assistive listening devices are a boon to people with hearing impairment. They are like tiny amplifiers that help someone hear sounds better and can even pick up small sounds”, he said.
Technology has been steadfast in providing great help to people with hearing impairment.
news@khaleejtimes.com (news@khaleejtimes.com)
Dr Shaharyar Mallick, ENT Specialist, Aster Medical Centre, Karama, Dubai

12-Nov-2011, 07:08 AM
Keep smiling to look young

11 November 2011, 12:32 PM
While many women may feel a face-lift or anti-ageing creams are the only ways to look young, a study has suggested it is the smile that holds the key to looking younger than one’s actual age.
According to German researchers, the simple act of smiling takes years off a person’s age. It is likely we consider people who are happy as being attractive in other ways - including being younger than they actually are, Daily Mail reported.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/smile_11111.jpgTemporary wrinkles caused due to grinning also make it more difficult to judge a person’s age and so may lead to those doing the guessing to err on the side of caution.
Manuel Voelkle, of the Max Planck Institute in Berlin, asked over 150 men and women of different ages to judge the ages of the faces in more than 1,000 photographs.
He concluded: “Facial expressions have a substantial impact on accuracy.
“Relative to other facial expressions, the age of neutral faces was estimated most accurately, while the ages of those displaying happy expressions was most likely under-estimated.”
The study also revealed that the older faces are more difficult to judge than the younger ones.
The age of those doing the judging was also important. In general, elderly people overestimated the age of those photographed, while younger people shaved a year or two off.
Women also fared better, with older female faces estimated on average to be three years younger than their male equivalents, the journal Psychology and Aging reports.

22-Nov-2011, 07:42 PM
Tropical oils don’t boost heart risk markers

19 November 2011
Tropical oils may be sources of saturated fat, but a small study suggests that they do not boost certain markers of trouble in the blood vessels the way animal fats do.
In general, experts advise people to limit saturated fat in their diets because it raises blood cholesterol levels and has been linked to an increased risk of heart disease.
Meat and full-fat dairy products are probably the best-known sources of saturated fat, but certain vegetable oils—like palm and coconut oils—contain it too.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/oil1_1911.jpgDifferent saturated fats are not exactly alike, however. And in societies where those tropical oils are used liberally, heart disease is less of a problem compared with Western countries, noted Phooi Tee Voon, a researcher at International Medical University in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, who led the new study.
In the study, Voon’s team followed 45 healthy Malaysian adults who spent five weeks on each of three diets: in one their main fat source was palm oil; in another it was coconut oil; in the third it was olive oil—an unsaturated fat that’s considered heart-healthy.
The researchers found that regardless of the fat source, participants’ blood levels of certain inflammatory proteins remained the same.
That’s important because at high concentrations, those proteins—which include homocysteine, C-reactive protein and others—are thought to damage the blood vessels and contribute to heart disease.
When it came to cholesterol, study participants showed no increase while on the palm-oil diet, but did see their numbers creep up while using coconut oil—though that included an increase in “good” HDL cholesterol.
So should you feel free to swap your olive oil for the tropical versions?
“I’d say, hold the phone on that,” said Roberta Anding, a registered dietitian and spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association.
A big limitation is that the study participants were on carefully controlled diets, explained Anding, who also directs sports nutrition at Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston.
The researchers supervised breakfast and lunch, and doled out packaged dinners. It was “very nicely controlled,” Anding said, in order to isolate the effects of the different fats—which is a good research design.
“But that’s not how people eat in the real world,” Anding said.
In addition, people in the study followed a traditional Malaysian diet—consisting of rice, chicken, fish and vegetables.
As part of a Western meat-and-potatoes diet already high in saturated fat and refined carbohydrates, palm and coconut oils might have quite different effects, according to Anding.
“I think if you were to keep eating your hamburgers and your fries, and then add coconut and palm oils, you could create the perfect storm,” Anding said.
A study from Denmark published earlier this month also tested diets emphasizing palm oil, olive oil or lard, and found that the olive oil diet lowered cholesterol levels while palm oil and lard both raised cholesterol by about five percent. None of the fats influenced inflammatory proteins in that study. (See Reuters Health story of November 15, 2011).
The Malaysian study, which was funded by the Malaysian Palm Oil Board, appears in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
Because it was limited to five-week diets, nothing can be concluded about the ultimate impact of the oils on people’s heart health.
But one thing the study does highlight is the fact that no single nutrient works in isolation, according to Anding.
“No individual dietary component can be labeled a demon,” she said.
Eating a generally heart-healthy diet full of foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains and fish is what’s key, according to Anding. So if you are cooking your vegetable stir-fry with some coconut or palm oil, then on balance, you are probably doing well, she said.
In general, though, many experts recommend limiting saturated fat. The American Heart Association says people should keep saturated fat (from all sources) to less than seven percent of your total daily calories. (That’s 140 calories if you eat 2,000 calories in a day.)
Instead, the heart association says, opt for unsaturated fat from vegetable oils and fish.
And if you’re overweight, Anding said, calories definitely count. “If you want to lose weight, you have to cut out calories.”

25-Nov-2011, 10:01 PM
Death 'risk' from paracetamol doses

25 November 2011

LONDON- Heavy dose of paracetamol or combination remedies containing the drug to combat cold and flu can prove to be fatal, reveals a new study.
Taking too much paracetamol in pills and cold remedies can prove to be dangerous, according to British researchers, the Daily Mail reported.
The study shows that the risk of dying from liver failure due to accidental overdose is higher than deliberate suicide attempts.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/health_25112011.jpgThis is due to the unawareness of the patients who report feeling unwell to the accident and emergency departments without knowing the cause, making it difficult to diagnose and treat in time.
According to researchers, eight 500mg tablets a day—equivalent of 4gm, should be the maximum daily dosage.
In the study led by Kenneth Simpson, researcher at the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary, analysed data of 663 patients who had been admitted between 1992 and 2008 with liver damage caused by paracetamol.
They found 161 people with an average age of 40 had taken a staggered overdose, usually to relieve stomach or back pain, headache and toothache, two out of five died from liver failure - a higher fatality rate than recorded for deliberate overdosing, the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology reported.
“The staggered overdoses can occur when people have pain and repeatedly take a little more paracetamol than they should, they don’t keep track of how much they’ve consumed over a few days,” Simpson said.
“The safest thing to do is monitor how much you’re taking and do not exceed eight 500mg tablets in a day,” he added.
Normal quantities of the drug are broken down harmlessly by the body but excessive amounts can accumulate in the liver, leading to irreversible damage.

25-Nov-2011, 10:05 PM

Coffee can lower uterine cancer risk


23 November 2011
Women who drink four or more cups of coffee a day may have a reduced risk of developing cancer in the lining of their uterus, according to a US study.
Researchers who looked at more than 67,000 US nurses found that women who drank that much coffee were one-quarter less likely to develop endometrial cancer than women who averaged less than a cup a day, said the study, published in the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention.
The absolute risk that any one woman, coffee drinker or not, would develop the cancer was fairly small, with only 672 women — or one percent of the study group — being diagnosed with it over 26 years.
While researchers could also not say for certain that coffee was the reason for the lower risk among those who drank a lot of coffee, the study adds to several others with similar results.
Coffee itself may have some benefits, said senior researcher Edward Giovannucci, of the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston.
‘It can lower insulin levels and may lower levels of free estrogen circulating in the body,’ he added.
Higher concentrations of insulin and higher lifetime exposure to estrogen have both been linked to a higher risk of endometrial cancer.
Researchers looked at a number of other factors, such as differences in women’s weight, since obesity is also linked to a higher risk of endometrial cancer, but that did not account for the lower cancer risk seen among coffee drinkers.
Nor did differences in women’s childbirth history or hormone use, though birth control pills or hormone replacement therapy after menopause.
Of course, downing four cups of coffee a day may not be a good idea, especially for someone sensitive to the effects of caffeine. The researchers found that while caffeinated coffee was tied to a lower cancer risk, there was no statistically significant link with decaf — though there was a ‘suggestive’ trend in that direction.
In theory, adding sugar and cream to coffee could be bad for the waistline. With obesity also tied to a higher risk of the cancer, that could wipe out any potential benefit of coffee drinking.
‘It would be premature to make a recommendation that women drink coffee to lower their endometrial cancer risk,’ Giovannucci said.
The bottom line, he said, is that people who are already enjoying their coffee can probably continue to do so - but the biggest preventative for the cancer is maintaining a healthy weight through diet and regular exercise.
SOURCE: http://bit.ly/tFGByG (http://bit.ly/tFGByG)

29-Nov-2011, 06:46 AM
Low vitamin D linked to heart disease (Reuters) 26 November 2011 In people with low blood levels of vitamin D, boosting them with supplements more than halved a person’s risk of dying from any cause compared to someone who remained deficient, in a large new study. Analyzing data on more than 10,000 patients, University of Kansas researchers found that 70 percent were deficient in vitamin D and they were at significantly higher risk for a variety of heart diseases.

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/vitamind1_26112011.jpg Don’t depend only on sun for Vit D The sun should not be the only source of vitamin D, according to Dr Anwar Al Hammadi, Consultant and Head of Dermatology at the Dubai Health Authority and City Hospital, Dubai, People should consume more foods and supplements that can help them overcome the deficiency, he said. Many studies suggest that vitamin D deficiency is significantly higher in Arab women than those in western countries. “The risk of obtaining the vitamin from the sun is more than that of taking supplements, so why take a risk?” Vitamin D deficiency can lead to hair loss, fatigue and joint pains.

D-deficiency also nearly doubled a person’s likelihood of dying, whereas correcting the deficiency with supplements lowered their risk of death by 60 percent. “We expected to see that there was a relationship between heart disease and vitamin D deficiency; we were surprised at how strong it was,” Dr. James L. Vacek, a professor of cardiology at the University of Kansas Hospital and Medical Center, told Reuters Health. “It was so much more profound than we expected.” Vitamin D deficiency has been linked to a range of illnesses, but few studies have demonstrated the reverse—that supplements could prevent those outcomes. Vacek and his team reviewed data from 10,899 adults whose vitamin D serum levels had been tested at the University of Kansas Hospital, and found that more than 70 percent of the patients were below 30 nanograms per milliliter, the level many experts consider sufficient for good health. After taking into account the patients’ medical history, medications and other factors, the cardiologists found that people with deficient levels of vitamin D were more than twice as likely to have diabetes, 40 percent more likely to have high blood pressure and about 30 percent more likely to suffer from cardiomyopathy—a diseased heart muscle—as people without D deficiency. Overall, those who were deficient in D had a three-fold higher likelihood of dying from any cause than those who weren’t deficient, the researchers reported in the American Journal of Cardiology. Moreover, when the team looked at people who took vitamin D supplements, their risk of death from any cause was about 60 percent lower than the rest of the patients, although the effect was strongest among those who were vitamin D deficient at the time they were tested. The study does not prove that vitamin D is the cause of the effects seen—other factors, like disease, could be responsible both for the differences in health and the differences in vitamin D levels, for instance. Previous research has indicated that many Americans don’t have sufficient levels of vitamin D, however. The latest National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey estimated that 25 percent to 57 percent of adults have insufficient levels of D, and other studies have suggested the number is as high as 70 percent. Vacek said he believes so many people are deficient because we should get about 90 percent of our Vitamin D from the sun and only about 10 percent from our food. The human body makes vitamin D in response to skin exposure to sunlight. Certain foods, like oily fish, eggs and enriched milk products are also good sources of D. A sufficient amount of Vitamin D absorption from the sun would require at least 20 minutes of full-body exposure each day in warmer seasons, and most people aren’t outside enough, Vacek said. In the northern United States and throughout Canada, experts say the sun isn’t strong enough during the winter months to make sufficient vitamin D, even if the weather was warm enough to expose the skin for a long time. It means that adults should consider getting their Vitamin D levels checked through a simple blood test, Vacek said, and take vitamin D supplements. Generally, Vacek recommends that adults take between 1,000 to 2,000 international units (IU) of Vitamin D each day. “If you’re not deficient, Vitamin D is not a magic pill that will make you live longer,” Vacek said. “Its benefit is in people who are deficient. If you’re low, it makes sense to be put on replacement therapy and have a follow-up a couple months later to make sure your levels come up.”

30-Nov-2011, 01:35 AM
Diabetes drug reduces cancer risk

29 November 2011

Washington - A low-cost diabetes drug seems to beat the growth of breast cancer, especially by preventing a number of natural and man-made chemicals that promote it.
James Trosko from Michigan State University and a team from South Korea’s Seoul National University have thrown up evidence to show that use of metformin for Type-2 diabetes reduces risk of cancers.

‘People with Type-2 diabetes are known to be at high risk for several diabetes-associated cancers such as breast, liver and pancreatic cancers,’ said Trosko, pediatrics professor at Michigan’s College of Human Medicine.

‘While metformin has been shown in population studies to reduce the risk of these cancers, there was no evidence of how it worked,’ the journal Public Library of Science quoted him as saying.

Trosko and colleagues, using culture dishes, grew miniature human breast tumours or mammospheres that activated a certain stem cell gene, according to a Michigan University statement.

Then the mammospheres were exposed to natural estrogen - a known growth factor and potential breast tumour promoter - and man-made chemicals that are known to promote tumors or disrupt the endocrine system.

The team found that estrogen and the chemicals caused the mammospheres to increase in numbers and size. However, with metformin added, the numbers and size of the mammospheres were dramatically reduced.

While each of the chemicals enhanced growth by different means, metformin seemed to be able to inhibit their stimulated growth in all cases.


01-Dec-2011, 11:04 PM

06-Dec-2011, 09:51 PM
Smartphone addicts start to feel the pain

3 December 2011
Users of smartphones and tablet computers are starting to get high-tech blues, as increasing numbers of the tech savvy are coming down with ailments from “text neck” to “text thumb injury”.
Health experts in Britain have warned that the strain injuries stemming from long periods spent staring at small screens and tapping at tiny keys can be debilitating. And the injuries are becoming more common as high-tech gadgets grow ever more popular.
More and more Britons use their smartphones — in effect tiny PCs that fit in a jacket pocket — for accessing the Internet rather than making phone calls.
“I had a patient who developed inflamed tendons in her thumb from using her smartphone and was unable to use her hand for weeks due to pain,” said Tim Hutchful from the British Chiropractic Association.
Sammy Margo of the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy said that people’s bodies are “not designed to be used like this”.“The phones are far too small, with keys that are too small,” she said, noting that pain in the upper limbs forced one of her patients to stop texting.

06-Dec-2011, 09:53 PM
Child abuse changes the brain

5 December 2011
LONDON - Children exposed to family violence show the same pattern of activity in their brains as soldiers exposed to combat, scientists said on Monday.
In a study in the journal Current Biology, researchers used brain scans to explore the impact of physical abuse or domestic violence on children’s emotional development and found that exposure to it was linked to increased activity in two brain areas when children were shown pictures of angry faces. Previous studies that scanned the brains of soldiers exposed to violent combat situations showed the same pattern of heightened activity in these two brain areas — the anterior insula and the amygdala — which experts say are associated with detecting potential threats.

This suggests that both maltreated children and soldiers may have adapted to become “hyper-aware” of danger in their environment, the researchers said.
“Enhanced reactivity to a...threat cue such as anger may represent an adaptive response for these children in the short term, helping keep them out of danger,” said Eamon McCrory of Britain’s University College London, who led the study.
But he added that such responses may also be underlying neurobiological risk factor which increases the children’s susceptibility to later mental illness like depression. Depression is already a major cause of mortality, disability, and economic burden worldwide and the World Health Organisation predicts that by 2020, it will be the second leading contributor to the global burden of disease across all ages.
Childhood maltreatment is known to be one of the most potent environmental risk factors linked to later mental health problems such as anxiety disorders and depression.
A study published in August found that found that people who suffered maltreatment as children were twice as likely as those who had normal childhoods to develop persistent and recurrent depression, and less likely to respond well or quickly to treatment for their mental illness.
McCrory said still relatively little is known about how such early adversity “gets under the skin and increases a child’s later vulnerability, even into adulthood.”
In the study, 43 children had their brains scanned using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Twenty of the children who were known to have been exposed to violence at home were compared with 23 who had not experienced family violence.
The average age of the maltreated children was 12 years and they had all been referred to local social services in London.
When the children were in the scanner they were shown pictures of male and female faces showing sad, calm or angry expressions. The researchers found that those who had been exposed to violence showed increased brain activity in the anterior insula and amygdala in response to the angry faces.
“We are only now beginning to understand how child abuse influences functioning of the brain’s emotional systems,” McCrory said. “This research...provides our first clues as to how regions in the child’s brain may adapt to early experiences of abuse.”

06-Dec-2011, 09:54 PM
Vegetables, grain cut stroke risk

5 December 2011

Women eating an antioxidant-rich diet suffered fewer strokes independently of whether they had past history of cardiovascular disease or not, a new study reveals.
“Eating antioxidant-rich foods may reduce your risk of stroke by inhibiting oxidative stress and inflammation,” said doctoral student Susanne Rautiainen at the Karolinska Institutet in Sweden, who led the study.
“This means people should eat more foods such as fruits and vegetables that contribute to total antioxidant capacity,” she added.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/health_05122011.jpgOxidative stress is an imbalance between the production of cell-damaging free radicals and the body’s ability to neutralize them. It leads to inflammation, blood vessel damage and stiffening, the Journal of the American Heart Association:Stroke reported.
Researchers categorized the women according to their total antioxidant capacity (TAC) levels—five groups without a history of cardiovascular disease and four with previous cardiovascular disease, according to a university statement.
TAC measures the free radical reducing capacity of all antioxidants in the diet and considers mutually beneficial effects among these substances.
For women with no history of cardiovascular disease and highest TAC, fruits and vegetables contributed about 50 percent. Other contributors were whole grains (18 percent), tea (16 percent) and chocolate (five percent).
Higher TAC was related to lower stroke rates in women without cardiovascular disease.
Women without cardio disease with the highest levels of dietary TAC had a statistically significant 17 percent lower risk of total stroke compared to those in the lowest quintile.

06-Dec-2011, 09:55 PM
Anxiety disorder weakens heart
(Staff Reporter)

3 December 2011
DUBAI - Sandwich in one hand, laptop in the other, a hurried search for the car keys, foot on the gas, hit the road with rage and impatient wait at the traffic jam, a classic weekday morning in the rat race.
E-mailing, Blackberries and cell phones, instead of making our lives simpler, have made it stressful. It all boils down to one thing — anxiety disorder leading to a weak heart. Is this fast pace killing us day by day is a question we all should ask ourselves.
There’s good news and bad news about this most common situation. The good news is that stress is good in right proportions, in the sense that it drives us to perform better, keeps us alert and out of danger. Left unchecked, it could limit our functions and stop us from leading a normal life.
“Body reacts when it perceives danger. There is a surge of energy in the body due to the release of certain hormones called adrenalin in the body, enabling it to fight or flee from any potential danger. However, if such hormone releases are excessive, it can create harmful effects in the body. Prolonged flow of adrenalin in the body could weaken our hearts”, said Dr Mohammed Yousuf, Consultant Psychologist, Aster Medical Centre of DM Healthcare.
Understanding that we have a problem is the first step towards cure. A consultation with a good health professional can help us cope with the problem to a great extent.
A doctor will be able to tell us that anxiety is a general term for several disorders that cause nervousness, fear, apprehension and worry.
It leads to sleep disorders, exhaustion, tension headaches, constant worry, dark circles under the eyes, bowel disturbances, lowered immunity, irritability, lack of concentration etc, he added.
A healthy and light-minded approach towards life can lessen the harmful effects of anxiety. Laughing out aloud at adversities may sound impractical, but it sure does distract our minds.
Wearing a smile makes us feel better, not to mention enhancing our good looks and confidence.
news@khaleejtimes.com (news@khaleejtimes.com)
Dr Mohammed yousuf, Consultant Psychologist, Aster Medical Centre

17-Dec-2011, 07:38 AM
MRI scan a vital tool in diagnostics
(Staff Reporter)

16 December 2011
DUBAI — Technological advances in medical science have been a great boon to the field. MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) is at the cutting-edge of these latest techniques.
MRI has now reached to such a stage of nanotechnology that the chemical and molecular constituents can be analyzed and almost histological diagnosis can be obtained without actually doing a biopsy (taking a bit of tissue for confirmatory diagnosis) in many lesions (abnormal tissue), says Dr Sivakumar Dhanaraj, Specialist Radiologist, Zulekha Hospital, Dubai.
MRI scan is superior to CT scan in brain imaging because of obtaining good soft tissue contrast with high sensitivity in multiple planes. The most important thing is that there is no radiation involved, making it completely safe.
MR Spectroscopy (MRS) is a technique in which the chemical composition of substances at the pathological site is determined by detecting the electromagnetic energy emerging from it; this is displayed in graphical form instead of an MR image, he said. With this technique, we can now identify different infections, discriminate the aggressiveness of a tumor, and so on.
DIFFUSION-weighted MR imaging (DWI) is a technique included within the routine MR protocol which depends on the normal diffusibility of water molecules in a tissue. Following a stroke, in which tissue is damaged due to blockage of its blood supply, diffusion of the water molecule in that region is impaired, and this can be detected using this technique within 5-10 minutes of stroke onset.
DWI has also been used in mapping the direction of nerve fibers to examine the connectivity of different regions in the brain (called “tractography”) as well as to examine areas of neural degeneration and demyelination in diseases like Multiple Sclerosis.
Functional MRI (fMRI) measures signal changes in the brain that occur while the person performs some action; patients have been examined while performing certain tasks or calculations while inside the scanner.
“When planning surgical removal of brain tumors, the radiologist can help the neurosurgeon by delineating the vital areas of the cerebral cortex controlling language, motor, and memory functions in relation to the tumor. The surgeon can then take extra care during the procedure or he can decide not to operate at all.”
Patients should always keep the previous scan images and reports safely even for decades and should always take to the radiologist at the time of repeat scanning so that they can compare the size and nature of the lesion and give their comments about the progression or regression of the disease process.
— news@khaleejtimes.com (news@khaleejtimes.com) Dr Sivakumar Dhanaraj Specialist Radiologist, Zulekha Hospital, Dubai

17-Dec-2011, 08:25 AM
Low iron levels tied to blood clot risk


16 December 2011
People with low iron levels in their blood may have a higher risk of dangerous clots.
A study of clotting risk factors in patients with an inherited blood vessel disease suggests that treating iron deficiency could be instrumental in preventing potentially lethal clots.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/health1_16122011.jpgDeep vein thrombosis—blood clots that form in the veins—can cause pain and swelling, but can also be fatal if the clot is dislodged and travels into the blood vessels of the lungs.
To look for new risk factors for blood clots, scientists at Imperial College London studied patients with hereditary haemorrhagic telangiectasia (HHT), the journal Thorax reports.
HHT is an inherited disease of the blood vessels, the main symptoms of which are excessive bleeding from the nose and gut, according to an Imperial College statement.
“Most of our patients who had blood clots did not have any of the known risk factors,” said Claire Shovlin, from the National Heart and Lung Institute at Imperial College London, who led the study.
Shovlin and team analysed blood from 609 patients reviewed at the HHT clinic at Imperial College’s Hammersmith Hospital from 1999 to 2011, to look for differences between the patients who had blood clots and those who did not.
Many of the patients had low iron levels because of iron lost through bleeding. The researchers found that low levels of iron in the blood were a strong risk factor for blood clots.
Patients who took iron supplements did not have higher risk, suggesting that treatment for iron deficiency can prevent blood clots.
“Our study shows that in people with HHT, low levels of iron in the blood is a potentially treatable risk factor for blood clots,” Shovlin said.

23-Dec-2011, 01:39 AM
How to get better memory, thinner waist


22 December 2011
If you are one of those who always wished to have a strong memory power or remained worried due to increasing waistline, the solution lies in eating less and taking a cup of coffee in everyday life, a new study has suggested.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/health_2212011.jpgResearchers have found eating less could help you remember more and skipping dessert and having an after-dinner coffee instead could also be good for your brain as well as the waistline, the Daily Mail reported.
The news comes from an Italian study into ‘calorific restriction’ - the idea that near-starvation rations boost health and extend life.
Scientists have long known of the phenomenon, but struggled to work out just what it is about severely cutting calories that improves health.
For the study, it was decided to focus on a protein called CREB1 that is known to be important to memory and learning. While conducting experiments on mice, researcher Giovambattista Pani showed that cutting calories boosted learning if the animals could still make CREB1. Besides, he also showed that cutting calories boosts the amount of the protein made in the brain.
It was also found the animals’ calorie count was only cut by 25 to 30 percent but in human terms, this equates to about 600 calories a day.

27-Dec-2011, 11:20 PM

Ulcer bacteria may protect against diarrhea


27 December 2011

People who harbor ulcer-causing bacteria in their stomachs may be protected against some diarrheal diseases, according to an Israeli study.
Some previous studies had suggested that being infected with the bacterium, Helicobacter pylori, increases the risk of diarrhea, while others have reported finding the opposite, said researchers from Tel Aviv University.
‘Our findings suggest an active role of H. pylori in the protection against diarrheal diseases,’ wrote lead author Dani Cohen in the journal Clinical Infectious Diseases.
The bacterium is especially common throughout the developing world, but only causes symptoms in a minority of those it infects. People with chronic H. pylori infections are known to have an increased risk of stomach cancer and related diseases.
Cohen’s team studied 595 male Israeli soldiers, close to one-third of whom visited a base clinic for diarrhea during their field training.
All of the soldiers had their blood taken before the start of training, which researchers used to determine which men were chronically infected with H. pylori.
It turned out that between 32 and 36 percent of soldiers who had diarrhea due to different types of bacteria than H. pylori, or from unknown causes, had been infected with H. pylori before training.
By contrast, up to 56 percent of soldiers who had been infected with H. pylori before training reported no diarrhea.
The researchers calculated that being infected with H. pylori meant solders were about 60 percent less likely to get diarrhea from Shigella bacteria.
They also had a lower chance of having diarrhea caused by Escherichia coli bacteria—although statistically, that particular finding could be due to chance.
An H. Pylori infection may affect how acidic the gut is, and high acidity is known to keep disease-causing bacteria from settling there, Cohen said in an email.
Having an immune system in overdrive due to chronic H. pylori infection may also keep other bacteria in the digestive system at bay, the researchers wrote.
SOURCE: bit.ly/sE7yOd (http://bit.ly/sE7yOd)

27-Dec-2011, 11:21 PM
Mediterranean diet helps you live longer

23 December 2011
Eating large amounts of vegetables and fish can make you live three years longer, experts say.
People on such a diet with low amounts of animal-based products like meat and milk have a 20 percent higher chance of living longer with an estimated average of two to three years, The Telegraph reports.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/health_2412011.jpgThe health benefits have long been known, but now scientists have studied the effects on older people, using a unique study to compare thousands of 70-year-olds who eat the diet with others who have eaten more meat and animal products.
Known as the “H70” study, it has studied 70-year-olds for more than 40 years.
These results are supported by three further studies into Mediterranean diets and their health effects, one of which was on children, the newspaper said.
Gianluca Tognon, a scientist at the University of Gothenberg, Sweden, said: “This means in practice that older people who eat a Mediterranean diet live an estimated two to three years longer than those who don’t.
“The conclusion we can draw from these studies is that there is no doubt that a Mediterranean diet is linked to better health, not only for the elderly but also for youngsters.”
The study is published in the journal Age.

27-Dec-2011, 11:22 PM
Teamwork reduces surgical mistakes


24 December 2011

Hospitals that introduced a programme to boost communication and teamwork among doctors and nurses saw a decrease in surgery-related complications, according to a study.
The findings, based on nearly 120,000 operations and published in the Archives of Surgery, come a year after researchers reported a drop in patient death rates with the same programme.
Under the system, which is designed to catch medical errors before they lead to harm, the surgery team uses a checklist to discuss the patient and the procedure before starting surgery, then debriefs afterwards.
Patients may be involved in the briefings as well.
“Patients like it, staff like it, it is better for morale,” said Douglas Paull, a surgeon at the Veterans Health Administration’s National Center for Patient Safety in Ann Arbor, Michigan, who worked on the study.
“(Doctors and nurses) work in teams, we care about one another and we care about the patient, and it shows and outcomes are better,” he told Reuters Health. Paull and his colleagues compared infections, blood clots and other complications in patients being treated at 42 Veterans Health Administration (VHA) facilities that had implemented the so-called Medical Team Training programme, and another 32 that hadn’t.
In the year before surgical staff were trained in the communication and teamwork programme, hospitals in that group had 90 non-fatal complications out of every 1,000 surgeries, on average. That dropped to 75 in the year after the programme was established.
In comparison, there was a smaller drop from 81 complications to 76 for every 1,000 surgeries in facilities that hadn’t taken up the programme — which researchers said could have been due to chance. Specifically, facilities implementing the training saw a drop in surgery-related blood clots and both skin surface and deep wound infections.
In all, 37 of the 42 facilities with the new system improved their complication rates, versus 22 of 32 hospitals that didn’t have the extra focus on teamwork and communication.
“If you look at our training programmes, we’ve so much focused on tying knots and putting tubes in the right place — individual skills,” said Peter Pronovost, a critical care doctor who has studied surgical complications at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore. “But we’ve underfocused on teamwork and a lot of patients are suffering needlessly because of it,” he told Reuters Health.
Paull said that the system would work in hospitals outside the VHA system as well, noting that lack of communication can drive up costs and injure patients needlessly — and is highly preventable.
Pronovost urged patients and their families to be aware of the communications aspect of their care.
“If your clinician isn’t welcoming of your questions, isn’t welcoming of you being a partner on your team, that should be a red flag,” he said.
“If they’re welcoming not only your input but the nurses’ input and other members of the care team’s input, that’s a really positive sign that they’re likely to make wise decisions.”

31-Dec-2011, 03:25 AM
Diet patterns keep brain from shrinking



30 December 2011
WASHINGTON - People whose diets are rich in vitamins and omega 3 fatty acids are less likely to have brain shrinkage associated with Alzheimer’s disease, say experts.

Those whose diet is usually high in omega 3 fatty acids and vitamins C, D, E and B also had higher scores on mental thinking tests than people with diets low in those nutrients, Xinhua reported quoting the study in the online issue of Neurology.

Omega 3 fatty acids and vitamin D are primarily found in fish. The B vitamins and antioxidants C and E are primarily found in fruits and vegetables.

In another finding, the study showed that people with diets high in trans fats were more likely to have brain shrinkage and lower scores on the thinking and memory tests than people with diets low in trans fats.

Trans fats are primarily found in packaged, fast, fried and frozen food, baked goods and margarine spreads.

The study involved 104 people with an average age of 87.

Blood tests were used to determine the levels of various nutrients present in the blood of each participant.

All of the participants also took tests of their memory and thinking skills. Of the total participants, 42 had MRI scans to measure their brain volume. Overall, the participants had good nutritional status, but seven percent were deficient in vitamin B12 and 25 percent were deficient in vitamin D.

31-Dec-2011, 03:27 AM
Heavy shopping bags cause stress

30 December 2011
LONDON - Something as simple as carrying heavy shopping bags can trigger depression, reveals a study.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/healththumb_3012011.jpgIn the study, one group of participants were told to hold shopping bags full of goods before giving their opinion on an unrelated topic. Another group was left empty-handed and questioned.
Results showed the issue was more important to those carrying bags than those who were not weighed down, the Journal of Consumer Research reported.
Researcher Meng Zhang and Xiuping Li, from the Chinese University of Hong Kong and National University of Singapore, said their findings suggest physical weight influences a person’s psychological weight, according to the Daily Mail.
The study found that negative psychological impact was eliminated when participants who carried heavy loads were instructed to think about light objects, such as balloons and feathers.

31-Dec-2011, 03:28 AM
Want a pet cat? Think again

28 December 2011
Tempted by the playful antics of that adorable kitten in the pet shop? If you’ve never had a cat before you may want to think again, especially if you have other allergies, researchers warn.
And if you do acquire a feline, keep it out of your bedroom.
While having a cat as a child may protect against future allergies, getting one in adulthood nearly doubles the chances of developing an immune reaction to it—the first step towards wheezing, sneezing and itchy eyes, a European study found.
The same study, which covered thousands of adults and was published in The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, found that people with other allergies were at extra high risk of reacting to a new feline in the house.
‘Our data support that acquiring a cat in adulthood nearly doubles the risk of developing cat sensitization,’ wrote Mario Olivieri, from the University Hospital of Verona in Italy (http://www.reuters.com/places/italy).
‘Hence, cat avoidance should be considered in adults, especially in those sensitized to other allergens and reporting a history of allergic diseases.’
For the study, researchers surveyed more than 6,000 adult Europeans twice over nine years, taking blood samples. None of the participants had antibodies to cats in their blood to start with, meaning they were not sensitized to the animal’s dander.
Sensitization can be measured in a skin prick test. It does not necessarily lead to symptoms, but in many cases it is the harbinger of full-blown allergies.
About three percent of people who did not have a cat at either time of the survey became sensitized over the course of the study, compared to five percent of those who acquired a cat during those nine years.
Four in 10 of the newly sensitized also said they experienced allergy symptoms around animals, four times the rate seen among people without antibodies against cats.
It also turned out that only people who let their pet into the bedroom became sensitized.
‘If you are an adult with asthma and/or allergies, you should think twice about getting a cat and particularly, if you do so, letting it into your bedroom,’ said Andy Nish of the Allergy and Asthma Care Center in Gainesville, Georgia, who wasn’t involved in the study.
The researchers did find, however, that people who had had a cat in childhood had a much smaller risk against becoming sensitized to it than those who were new cat owners.
‘We thought that having a cat in early childhood may be protective against the development of cat allergy in childhood, but this study seems to indicate that protection extends into adulthood,’ Nish told Reuters Health in an email.
Noting that he always recommends keeping cats out of the bedroom, he added: ‘It is remarkable that none who did not allow the cat in the bedroom became sensitized.’
For people who have a cat and have become allergic, he recommended finding a new home for the pet, followed by keeping the cat outdoors at all times.
‘If it comes in even occasionally, its dander will remain in the house for months. If the cat needs to be indoors, at least keep it out of your bedroom, consider a HEPA filter for your bedroom, and consider washing the cat at least once a week,’ he added. SOURCE: bit.ly/vbZHAT (http://bit.ly/vbZHAT)

03-Jan-2012, 12:37 AM
Black tea is beneficial for health


2 January 2012
LONDON - While many people prefer being cautious about taking too much tea at home or workplace, researchers now suggest that by taking three cups a day one can slash heart attack’s risk by 60 percent and dramatically reduce diabetes threat.
Researchers believe that the humble cuppa, packed with health-giving antioxidants, can help prevent the two killer conditions in a triple-pronged attack, the Daily Express reported.

The study found that in most cases black tea was found to produce a significant protective association.

Regular consumption of tea is claimed to prevent artery-blocking blood clots, control blood pressure and stop arteries from dangerously constricting and inhibiting blood flow. All three conditions can set off a killer heart attack as blood vessels feeding oxygen to heart muscles become blocked.

An extensive review of 40 research papers by Carrie Ruxton and Pamela Mason, and published in the UK Nutrition Bulletin, evaluated a raft of data linking black tea and disease prevention.

Ruxton and Mason estimate that people taking three to six cups of tea a day lower their risk of contracting heart disease by 30 to 57 percent compared with people who never drink it or who drink small amounts.

”Given the available evidence to date, regular black tea consumption is linked with a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease and Type 2 diabetes,” Ruxton said.

”Though the amount required to produce such benefits should be the subject of further research, three to six cups of black tea daily appears to contribute to cardiovascular health.”

03-Jan-2012, 12:38 AM
Fruits, veggies, and your weight

31 December 2011
A large new European study finds that simply eating a lot of fruits and vegetables may not be enough to stave off the weight gain that often comes with age—except for people who recently quit smoking.
Researchers found that of nearly 374,000 adults in 10 European countries, who were followed for five years, those who ate the most fruits and vegetables were no less likely to gain weight once other factors—like calorie intake and exercise habits—were taken into account.
The results, reported in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, are not an excuse to skip the fruits and veggies, however.
http://www.khaleejtimes.ae/images/fruits_312011.jpgPlant foods are full of nutrients that may help ward off chronic diseases like heart disease and some cancers, note the researchers, led by Anne-Claire Vergnaud of Imperial College London in the UK.

And in some past studies that assigned overweight people to eat more fruits and vegetables, the diet change has seemed to help.
But the current findings do point to the importance of overall lifestyle in maintaining weight as one ages.
For the study, Vergnaud’s team looked at diet and weight information collected from adults between 25 and 70 years old.
Over five years, the study participants gained about one pound per year, on average.
Among men, weight gain generally dipped somewhat as their fruit and vegetable intake rose. But that link disappeared when the researchers accounted for other factors, like the men’s daily calories, exercise habits and education levels.
Among overweight women, those who said they ate the most vegetables tended to gain more weight over the next five years.
That, the researchers speculate, could be because some of those women were on weight-loss diets that encourage eating a lot of vegetables. Many people who go on special diets notoriously see their weight yo-yo over time.
There was one group for whom higher fruit and vegetable intake was linked to less weight gain: people who quit smoking during the study period. The reasons are not clear, Vergnaud’s team says.
But they speculate that healthy eating habits may help prevent the weight gain that many smokers experience when they try to kick the habit.
If that’s true, they write, “this finding may have important public health implications because weight gain after smoking cessation is a frequent reason for relapse.”
In general, experts urge people to get plenty of fruits and vegetables for the good of overall health. The “DASH” diet recommended for lowering blood pressure and cholesterol suggests four to five servings of fruit and the same number of vegetable servings each day.
A half-cup of cooked vegetables or a medium-sized piece of fresh fruit would be examples of a serving.
Studies suggest that the average adult in the US gets only two or three servings of fruits and vegetables combined each day.

12-Jan-2012, 03:46 AM
‘Use canola or olive oil for better health’


11 January 2012
NEW DELHI - When a recipe calls for ghee or butter, substitute it with canola or olive oil for better health. Both these oils can help you to shed weight and reduce liver fat, lipids and triglycerides, says a study.

The study conducted by the Diabetes Foundation (India) (DFI) and the National Diabetes, Obesity and Cholesterol Foundation (N-DOC) has found that consuming olive or canola oil can help in decreasing weight, waist circumference and reduce liver fat, lipids and triglycerides.

A group of 90 people in Fortis Hospital study, for over a period of three years from June 2007 to 2010, were divided into three groups and asked to use one type of cooking oil—olive, canola or any other oil.

”After a period of six months itself, we found that those who used olive or canola significantly reduced there weight, liver fat and triglycerides,” said Seema Gulati, head of nutrition research group at N-DOC.

The group which used olive oil significantly reduced the body weight, waist circumference and liver fat. As for the 30 people who used canola oil, they reported a decrease in waist circumference and a significantly improved insulin and blood glucose.

The group which used other oils, except the soybean or sunflower oil—which have a high content of mono-unsaturated fatty acid (MUFA) -- as cooking medium had not showed any significant changes.

”If the different traditional Indian oils used across the country are replaced by olive or canola oil, it can lead to multiple health benefits,” said Anoop Misra, director and head of department of diabetes and metabolic diseases at Fortis.

Misra also said that the study has important implications for Indians who are at heightened risk for diabetes and heart disease.

”By switching over to metabolic friendly oil, one could avert several chronic and lethal diseases,” he added.

12-Jan-2012, 03:47 AM
Vitamin B can modestly boost memory


10 January 2012
Older adults who took vitamin B12 and folic acid supplements for two years had greater improvements on short- and long-term memory tests than adults who did not take the vitamins, according to an Australian study.
The benefits were modest but encouraging, said author Janine Walker, a researcher at Australian National University, of the study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
‘(Vitamins) may have an important role in promoting healthy ageing and mental wellbeing, as well as sustaining good cognitive functioning for longer on a community-wide scale,’ said Walker in an email to Reuters Health.
The researchers asked more than 700 people aged 60 to 74 years to take a daily dose of folic acid and vitamin B12, or placebo pills that resembled the vitamins. The vitamin dose included 400 micrograms of folic acid and 100 micrograms of vitamin B12, and participants didn’t know which they were assigned to take.
The people taking part in the study showed signs of depression, but none had been diagnosed with clinical depression, the researchers said.
‘We felt that older people with elevated depressive symptoms were an important cohort to target given evidence that late-life depression is associated with increased risk of cognitive impairment,’ Walker said.
After 12 months, there seemed to be no difference between the groups in how well people scored on mental tests, including memory, attention and speed.
But after two years, those who took the vitamins showed more, if modest, improvement in their scores on the memory tasks.
For instance, on a short term memory test, those who took the fake pills improved their score from about 5.2 to about 5.5 over two years. Those who took the vitamins increased their test scores from 5.16 to about 5.6.
Short term memory is used to dial a number someone has just told you, while long term memory comes into play when you try to call that number a day or week later.
It’s not yet clear how taking vitamins might work to boost brain functioning, and not all studies have agreed on their benefits.
One idea is that the vitamins reduct the body’s levels of a molecule called homocysteine, which is linked to cardiovascular disease and poor cognitive function. The thinking goes that lowering homocysteine could perhaps reduce the cardiovascular risk, and in turn affect mental functioning.
Joshua Miller, a professor at the University of California, Davis, said it’s difficult to translate the memory improvement on the tests into real life benefits, with some people likely having larger memory improvements and others much less.
‘For any given individual, there may or may not be an effect,’ he said.
‘But on a population level, a small increase in cognitive function can have very real ramifications on the functioning of the population as a whole, and on the costs of healthcare.’
Further tests are needed, including whether other groups of people, especially those older than people in the new study, would also benefit from taking vitamins, Walker said.
SOURCE: http://bit.ly/yyx6YW (http://bit.ly/yyx6YW)

12-Jan-2012, 04:05 AM
9 January 2012 Last updated at 19:50 ET

Nicotine 'may aid memory for in early dementia' By Michelle Roberts Health reporter, BBC News http://news.bbcimg.co.uk/media/images/57773000/jpg/_57773573_nicotinepatchspl.jpg
The patches deliver nicotine - the "addictive" chemical found in cigarettes

Nicotine patches may improve the memory of elderly people experiencing the earliest symptoms of dementia, researchers suspect.
The patches appear to give a cognitive boost to people with mild memory impairment.
The findings, published in the journal Neurology, come from a small study of 67 people over a period of six months.
Experts say the results are not conclusive, merely hinting of a benefit and do not mean people should smoke.
The health risks of smoking massively outweigh any potential nicotine benefits. And nicotine is known to be addictive.
Longer and larger studies are now needed to fully assess nicotine's effect on memory and whether it might point the way to new treatments for Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia, they say.
Early promise There are some 820,000 people in the UK living with dementia. Although some drugs are already available that can lessen some of the symptoms of the disease, there is no cure for this progressive disorder.
Memory and cognition are some of the first functions that begin to fail in a person with dementia.

[/URL] “Start Quote We do not know whether benefits persist over long periods of time and provide meaningful improvement” Lead researcher Dr Paul Newhouse

They may find it difficult to recall recent events or facts or become increasingly confused, even when in familiar surroundings, for example.
Scientists have known for some time that the brain contains receptors that respond to nicotine and that a number of these are lost in Alzheimer's.
The latest work found that six months of treatment with nicotine patches appeared to improve how well individuals with "pre-dementia" or mild cognitive impairment (MCI) performed on tests designed to assess memory, attention and response times.
After six months of treatment, the nicotine-treated group regained 46% of normal performance for age on long-term memory, whereas the placebo group worsened by 26% over the same time period.
However, the findings were not statistically significant - a measure investigators need results to meet in order to rule out any chance findings.
The scientists say more studies are now needed to confirm their preliminary findings.
Lead author Dr Paul Newhouse, of Vanderbilt University School of Medicine in Nashville, said: "This study provides strong justification for further research into the use of nicotine for people with early signs of memory loss.
"We do not know whether benefits persist over long periods of time and provide meaningful improvement."
Derek Hill, professor of medical imaging science at University College London, said the study gave some exciting evidence that mild memory problems might be treatable before they develop into full blown dementia.
But he added: "Nicotine is just one of the existing or experimental drugs that could prove beneficial for this patient group. It should encourage more investment into research into possible treatments.
"It is quite likely that no treatment will help everyone - and so new diagnostic tests to match patients to treatments may be also needed to tackle dementia."

[URL]http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-16467186 (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-16467186#story_continues_2)

12-Jan-2012, 04:08 AM
9 January 2012 Last updated at 17:04 Routine aspirin 'may cause harm' By James Gallagher Health reporter, BBC News http://news.bbcimg.co.uk/media/images/57777000/jpg/_57777651_006307003-1.jpg
Should healthy people take aspirin?


Healthy people who take aspirin to prevent a heart attack or stroke could be doing more harm than good, warn researchers.
An analysis of more than 100,000 patients, published in Archives of Internal Medicine, concluded the risk of internal bleeding was too high.
The UK-led study said only people with a history of heart problems or stroke should take the tablets.
Experts said any decision should be made with a doctor.
Aspirin helps people who have had a heart attack or stroke. It prevents blood clots from forming by preventing cells, known as platelets, from sticking together. By reducing the number of clots formed, the tablets reduce the risk of another heart attack or stroke.
There have also been suggestions that the drug can prevent some cancers, however, the drug is known to increase the chance of internal bleeding, including bleeds on the brain.
The discussion has been whether at-risk or even healthy people should also take aspirin.
Official guidelines were issued in 2005 by the Joint British Societies (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-16468337#story_continues_1), which includes the British Cardiac Society, British Hypertension Society and The Stroke Association. It recommended 75 mg of aspirin a day for high risk patients over the age of 50. The Drugs and Therapeutics Bulletin said in 2008 that preventative aspirin should be abandoned (http://www.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/8338763.stm) unless there was already evidence of cardiovascular disease.
Good or bad? Researchers analysed data from nine trials, from a total of 102,621 patients.
They said that while there was a 20% reduction in non-fatal heart attacks in people taking aspirin, there was no reduction in deaths from heart attack, stroke or cancer.
Meanwhile the risk of potentially life threatening internal bleeding increased by 30%.

Lead researcher Prof Kausik Ray, from St George's, University of London, told the BBC: "If you treat 73 people for about six years you will get one of these non-trivial bleeds.
"If you treat about 160 people for the same period of time, you're preventing one heart attack that probably wouldn't have been fatal anyway.
"It suggests that the net benefit for aspirin is not there, it certainly doesn't prolong life. If you think about it the net benefit, actually there is net harm.
The study followed patients for an average of six years. An analysis led by Prof Peter Rothwell, from Oxford University, suggested that regularly taking aspirin reduced the risk of a series of cancers (http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736%2810%2962110-1/abstract), when patients were followed for much longer.
Prof Rothwell said the new study was "very nicely done, but I don't think it develops [the argument] much further".
He added: "It really just emphasises the need for a more detailed analysis of how risks change over time."
Natasha Stewart, senior cardiac nurse at the British Heart Foundation, said: "Aspirin can help reduce the risk of heart attack or stroke among those with known heart disease, and this group of people should continue to take aspirin as prescribed by their doctor.
"Our advice is that people who don't have symptomatic or diagnosed heart disease shouldn't take aspirin because the risk of internal bleeding may outweigh the benefits.
"If you're taking prescribed aspirin and have any concerns, don't simply stop taking it. Always talk to your doctor first."
Sotiris Antoniou, from the Royal Pharmaceutical Society, said: "People who buy aspirin should consult with their pharmacist to make sure that it is appropriate for them based on their individual likelihood of having a heart attack or stroke and their likelihood of experiencing a side effect such as stomach ulceration.
"If you are already taking aspirin, don't simply stop taking it, speak to the pharmacist about your individual circumstances."

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24-Jan-2012, 02:16 AM
Sleep apnea, sudden deafness linked

22 January 2012
Sudden hearing loss might be tied to an underlying sleep disorder that interrupts breathing, suggests a new study from Taiwan.
Consulting a large health insurance database, researchers found that people who’d suffered sudden deafness were more likely to have a previous diagnosis of sleep apnea than a comparison group without hearing loss.
The absolute difference was small: 1.7 percent of those with hearing loss had sleep apnea, compared to 1.2 percent without hearing trouble.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/sleep1_22010012.jpg“If there is sudden hearing loss, I would investigate the presence of apnea as well, given that it’s easy to diagnose and it’s easy to treat,” said Dr. Seva Polotsky, a sleep apnea researcher from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore who wasn’t involved in the new study.
“Obviously we don’t know from this paper whether treating apnea will reduce hearing loss,” or the chance of having hearing problems in the first place.
For now, he said, “There are more questions than answers.”
Polotsky added, it’s possible that sleep apnea, which is known to increase the buildup of plaque in blood vessels, could affect vessels in areas of the brain that control hearing, or vessels that feed the nerves responsible for hearing.
But he said more research will be needed to find out what could be behind this link—or whether something besides the apnea, itself, might explain an increased risk of deafness.
There are about 4,000 new cases of sudden deafness each year in the United States, according to the National Institutes of Health, and there are many possible causes, including infections and head injuries.
Typically the deafness only occurs in one ear, and most people regain their hearing over a period of weeks, sometimes aided by steroid treatment. But occasionally the hearing loss becomes more serious.
Looking at health records of one million Taiwanese, researchers led by Dr. Jau-Jiuan Sheu, of Taipei Medical University Hospital, found almost 3,200 had been diagnosed with sudden deafness between 2000 and 2008. For each of those people, they picked out another five of the same age and sex without hearing loss to serve as a comparison.
Out of those 19,000 people in total, 240 had been diagnosed with sleep apnea before the episode of sudden deafness occurred.
When researchers took into account health and lifestyle factors that may be related to both sleep problems and hearing loss—such as obesity and heart disease—they found that men with sudden deafness were 48 percent more likely to have a previous sleep apnea diagnosis than men without hearing loss.
The association for women was less clear, the researchers reported in the Archives of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery.
Sleep apnea is characterized by closing off of the airways during sleep, leading to repeated drops in oxygen levels in the blood and frequent short wake-ups, along with snoring. It’s often treated with a mask and breathing device, called continuous positive airway pressure, or CPAP, but one of the most effective treatments is weight loss.
The new study doesn’t prove that sleep apnea causes sudden hearing loss. The researchers couldn’t account for people’s smoking and drinking, for example, which may affect the risk of both conditions.
Sheu and colleagues speculated, however, that inflammation and changes in blood vessels linked to sleep apnea could contribute to the risk of deafness.
Tinnitus, the sensation of ringing in the ears, has been linked to circulatory disorders, for example.
Polotsky added that most of the complications associated with sleep apnea, which include high blood pressure and diabetes, are thought to result from frequent oxygen fluctuations during the night.
And sudden hearing loss could fit into that category, he told Reuters Health.
But the current study, Polotsky said, “doesn’t really establish that. It just shows us a new potential area to research.”

03-Feb-2012, 02:01 AM
Diet drinks up risk of heart attack


2 February 2012
People who consume diet soft drinks daily could be unwittingly inviting strokes and heart attacks.
Conversely, taking them in moderation don’t seem to perk chances of vascular events, a form of cardiovascular disease primarily affecting the blood vessels, says a new study.
It was conducted by Hannah Gardener and colleagues from the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine and Columbia University Medical Centre, the Journal of General Internal Medicine reports.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/soft_0202212.jpgDiet soft drinks are typically sugar-free, artificially sweetened, non-alcoholic carbonated beverages generally marketed towards health-conscious people, diabetics, athletes, and other people who want to lose weight.
Gardener and team examined the relationship between both diet and regular soft drink consumption and risk of stroke or myocardial infarction (heart attack), according to a Miami statement.
Data were analyzed from 2,564 participants in the Northern Manhattan Study, which was designed to determine stroke incidence, risk factors and prognosis in a multi-ethnic urban population.
The researchers looked at how often individuals drank soft drinks—diet and regular—and the number of vascular events that occurred over a 10-year period.
They found that those who drank diet soft drinks daily were 43 percent more likely to have suffered a vascular event than those who drank none, after taking into account pre-existing vascular conditions such as metabolic syndrome, diabetes and high blood pressure.
Gardener concludes: “Our results suggest a potential association between daily diet soft drink consumption and vascular outcomes. However, the mechanisms by which soft drinks may affect vascular events are unclear.”

03-Feb-2012, 02:05 AM
The flexible benefits of stretching


31 January 2012
NEW YORK - Whether your workout routine involves running a marathon or playing a game of basketball, a sequence of stretching exercises is often the easiest thing to cut out of it.
That’s a shame, experts say, because stretching can help you sharpen your performance, stave off injury, perk up your posture and even boost your mood.
“Essentially it’s like trying to drive a car without first making sure all the tires are on it,” said Los Angeles-based personal trainer Matt Berenc of the stretch-less routine. “Stretching is essentially preparing the body for movement.”
Berenc, who manages trainers at Equinox, the U.S. national chain of fitness centers, said stretching is typically one of the simplest things to do and one of the first things people avoid.
“People value other parts of the workout above it. They say, ‘I only have so much time, so I’ll skip this’,” he said, adding that if they took some time to focus on their stretch their workout would be better.
“If nothing else to create better movement throughout the body,” he said.
In 2010 the American College of Sports Medicine issued guidelines recommending “a stretching exercise program of at least 10 minutes in duration involving the major muscle tendon groups of the body with four or more repetitions per muscle group performed on a minimum of two to three days per week” for most adults.
All stretches are not the same. A static stretch is essentially a stretch held in one position; dynamic stretching involves active movements.
“In static stretching you hold a position for a length of time,” said Berenc, “like in a hamstring stretch where a client is lying on the back and you’re holding the leg straight up to stretch the back of it.”
A dynamic stretch involves active range of motion movements, such as arm circles or leg swings.
Berenc often starts by rolling a foam roller over different parts of the client’s body to prepare their tissues for stretching. Then it depends on client needs.
“If hips are tight, I’ll static stretch the hips,” he said. “Then I’ll get the clients up on their feet for a dynamic stretch to get into the full range of motion.”
Deborah Plitt, a trainer with Life Fitness, the equipment manufacturer, said a dynamic warm-up, such as stepping or ankle circles, can increase range of motion before hopping on the treadmill or elliptical trainer.
“The goal before your workout is to lubricate the joints,” said Plitt.
She is a firm believer in the post-workout stretch.
“Static stretches, held for 20 to 30 seconds increases increase blood flow to the muscles and improves flexibility,” she said.
Jessica Matthews of the American Council on Exercise said while flexibility remains the main goal, stretching exercises can also help relieve stress and even improve posture.
“It’s a great way to unwind,” she said. “Most people don’t associate that with stretching.”
Matthews, an exercise physiologist, said to keep post-workout static stretches safe and effective, they should be held only to the point of tension-never to the point of pain.
Berenc said with stretching, as with any activity, to avoid injury, listen to your body.
“Sometimes you see people on the exercise floor trying to stretch and the expression on their faces is excruciating,” he said. “Where you first start feeling the stretch is where you should stop.”


03-Feb-2012, 10:30 PM
Glass of milk makes for smarter brain


3 February 2012
Drinking a glass of milk daily not only smartens the brain but also supplies the vital nutrients it requires to be in a peak condition.
Besides the many known benefits of milk, from bone health to cardiovascular health, the potential to stave off mental decline would potentially benefit an aging population.
Adults who drank more milk scored significantly higher on memory and other brain function tests than those who drank little to no milk. They were five times less likely to “fail” the test, compared to non-milk drinkers, the International Dairy Journal reports.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/milk_0302202.jpgUniversity of Maine researchers put more than 900 men and women ages 23 to 98 through a series of tests, spatial, verbal and working memory tests and tracked their milk consumption habits.
In the series of eight different measures of mental performance, regardless of age and through all tests, those who drank at least one glass of milk each day had an advantage, according to a Maine statement.
The highest scores for all eight outcomes were observed for those with the highest intakes of milk and milk products compared to those with low and infrequent milk intakes.
The benefits persisted even after controlling for other factors that can affect brain health, including cardiovascular health and other lifestyle and diet factors.
Study co-authors suggest some of milk’s nutrients may have a direct effect on brain function and that “easily implemented lifestyle changes that individuals can make present an opportunity to slow or prevent neuropsychological dysfunction.”


03-Feb-2012, 10:32 PM
Drinking tea cuts blood pressure


29 January 2012
Drinking up to eight cups of tea a day lowers blood pressure and could prevent heart disease, Australian scientists have found.
Researchers at the University of Western Australia gave black leaf tea, such as Earl Grey or English Breakfast to volunteers with normal to high blood pressure.
They were given drinks containing 429 milligrams of the plant chemical polyphenols—or the equivalent of eight and a half cups of tea a day.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/tea1_29012.jpgA second group were given a tea-flavoured placebo.
After six months, the blood pressure of the tea-drinking group had fallen by between two and three mmHg, the measurement of pressure used in medicine.
A blood pressure fluctuating with the heartbeat between 112 and 63 mmHg is considered healthy, while a reading fluctuating between 140 and 90 is deemed high.
If the experiment was emulated by the general population, the number of people with high blood pressure would be cut by 10 percent and the risk of heart disease would fall by between seven and 10 percent.
“Our study has demonstrated for the first time to our knowledge that long-term regular consumption of black tea can result in significantly lower blood pressures in individuals with normal to high-normal range blood pressures,” the team, led by Jonathan Hodgson, wrote in the journal Archives of Internal Medicine.
Adding milk to tea also does not affect the body’s ability to absorb polyphenols, earlier studies have suggested.
Green tea is believed to have many health benefits as it is high in antioxidants. It is said to help in weight loss, prevent glaucoma and reduce risk of cancer.


17-Feb-2012, 01:55 AM
Neurons hold key erasing pain

14 February 2012
TORONTO - Researchers have found the key to how memories of pain are stored in the brain, especially in nerve cells (neurons), and how they can be erased to ease pain.

The central nervous system is known to “remember” painful experiences, that they leave a memory trace of pain.

And when there is new sensory input, the pain memory trace in the brain magnifies the feeling so that even a gentle touch can be excruciating.

”Perhaps the best example of a pain memory trace is found with phantom limb pain,” suggests McGill University neuroscientist Terence Coderre.

”Patients may have a limb amputated because of gangrene, the patients continue to feel they are suffering from pain in the absent limb,” he said, according to a McGill statement.

Recent work has shown that the protein kinase PKMzeta plays a crucial role in building and maintaining memory by strengthening the connections between neurons (nerve cells).

Now Coderre and his colleagues have discovered that PKMzeta is also the key to understanding how the memory of pain is stored in the neurons. They were able to show that after painful stimulation, the level of PKMzeta increases persistently in the central nervous system (CNS).

Even more importantly, the researchers found that by blocking the activity of PKMzeta at the neuronal level reverses the hypersensitivity to pain that neurons develop after irritating the skin by applying capsaicin—the active ingredient in hot peppers.

17-Feb-2012, 01:57 AM
Green tea tied to less disability with age


6 February 2012
Elderly adults who regularly drink green tea may stay more agile and independent than their peers over time, according to a Japanese study that covered thousands of people.
Green tea contains antioxidant chemicals that may help ward off the cell damage that can lead to disease. Researchers have been studying green tea’s effect on everything from cholesterol to the risk of certain cancers, with mixed results so far.
For the new study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, researchers decided to examine the question of whether green tea drinkers have a lower risk of frailty and disability as they grow older.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/gren1_17112011.jpgYasutake Tomata of the Tohoku University Graduate School of Medicine and his colleagues followed nearly 14,000 adults aged 65 or older for three years.
They found those who drank the most green tea were the least likely to develop “functional disability”, or problems with daily activities or basic needs, such as dressing or bathing.
Specifically, almost 13 percent of adults who drank less than a cup of green tea per day became functionally disabled, compared with just over 7 percent of people who drank at least five cups a day.
“Green tea consumption is significantly associated with a lower risk of incident functional disability, even after adjustment for possible confounding factors,” Tomata and his colleagues wrote.
The study did not prove that green tea alone kept people spry as they grew older.
Green-tea lovers generally had healthier diets, including more fish, vegetables and fruit, as well as more education, lower smoking rates, fewer heart attacks and strokes, and greater mental sharpness.
They also tended to be more socially active and have more friends and family to rely on.
But even with those factors accounted for, green tea itself was tied to a lower disability risk, the researchers said.
People who drank at least five cups a day were one-third less likely to develop disabilities than those who had less than a cup per day. Those people who averaged three or four cups a day had a 25 percent lower risk.
Although it’s not clear how green tea might offer a buffer against disability, Tomata’s team did note that one recent study found green tea extracts seem to boost leg muscle strength in older women.
While green tea and its extracts are considered safe in small amounts, they do contain caffeine and small amounts of vitamin K, which means it could interfere with drugs that prevent blood clotting.

17-Feb-2012, 01:58 AM
Osteoporosis — who is at risk?
Dr Vivek Mishra, Specialist Orthopaedics, Zulekha Hospital, 
Sharjah. (Staff Reporter)

4 February 2012
DUBAI - Osteoporosis is a common and destructive condition which leads to the fragility of the bone and a consequent increase in fracture risk, explains Dr Vivek Mishra, Specialist Orthopaedics, Zulekha Hospital, Sharjah.
Osteopenia is the forerunner of Osteoporosis. “Given the increasingly sedentary lifestyle followed by many people, particularly children, and an increasingly elderly population, the number of men and women suffering an osteoporotic fracture is likely to grow,” said the doctor.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/health1_04022012.jpgNo matter what your age and sex, osteoporosis can affect you. There are no visible signs and symptoms. One may notice loss of height and development of a hump in back with increasing age. Mostly osteoporosis is diagnosed after a painful fracture has occurred. This fracture is commonly in back or hips. After the first fracture, risk for subsequent fracture increases.
Non-modifiable risk factors for the disease include age, sex, ethnicity and family history. Decreasing estrogen at menopause in women is also one cause. White women are at higher risk compared to Afro-Caribbean women.
“There is a genetic link as well. If your mother had osteoprosis, chances are higher for you also getting osteoporosis,” said Dr Vivek.
The modifiable factors include low body mass index (BMI), smoking, alcohol intake, exercise and diet. A diet low in calcium, smoking, little or no exercise increases the risk. Bone Mineral Density (BMD) is the major criterion used for diagnosis and monitoring of osteoporosis. Assessment of bone density from plain x-rays is not appropriate as there is a observer variation. Recommended test for BMD is dual energy x-ray.
Around 1000mg of calcium everyday significantly reduces risk of osteoporosis-linked fractures. Dairy products including skimmed milk, yogurt, hard cheese offer a good source of calcium.
High impact strength training like jumping is not recommended for people with osteoporosis; exercise programme should start at low level and has to be comfortable for the person. Advice from a physiotherapist will help. For people having confirmed osteoporosis, consultation with a specialist is advisable to reduce fracture risk and to start the pharmacological therapy.
· —news@khaleejtimes.com (%E2%80%94news@khaleejtimes.com)

21-Feb-2012, 06:31 AM
Take tea to protect your health

18 February 2012
While many of us may remain undecided about how much is too much for us to take tea in a day, researchers have claimed drinking three cups of tea a day could help us keep the heart attacks and type 2 diabetes at bay.
A review shows regular drinking of tea, with or without milk, can reduce the risk of heart problems by cutting levels of bad cholesterol and blood sugar, Daily Mail reported.
As per experts, the benefits of tea are largely due to the flavonoid content - antioxidant ingredients that counteract cardiovascular disease.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/tea_1802012.jpgOne cup of tea provides 150-200mg of flavonoids and it is the best source of antioxidants in the diet.
Drinking three or more cups of black tea a day protects against heart disease and two or more cups a day may protect against type 2 diabetes, a review in the journal Nutrition Bulletin found.
Nutritionist Carrie Ruxton, co-author of the latest review and a member of the industry-backed Tea Advisory Panel (TAP), said: “There is far more to the nation’s favourite drink than we realise.
“With its antioxidant flavonoids, black tea packs a powerful punch with many health benefits particularly for the heart. And recent studies show that the flavonoids work their magic whether or not we choose to add milk.”
In addition, a 12-week study of 87 volunteers showed how drinking three cups of tea a day produced a significant improvement in various cardiovascular risk factors.
Flavonoids found in tea are thought to control inflammation, reduce excess blood clotting, promote blood vessel function and limit furring up of the arteries.

21-Feb-2012, 06:39 AM
Choose chicken over beef to cut stroke risk

14 January 2012
While a high-protein diet may have health benefits, not all protein is equal — eating lots of red meat raises the risk of having a stroke while poultry lowers it, according to a US study.
“The main message from this paper is that the type of protein or the protein package is really important for the risk of stroke,” Frank Hu at the Harvard School of Public Health said of the study, which was published in the journal Stroke. “We have to consider protein in the context of the foods.”
Hu and a team of researchers collected data from two massive health surveys that tracked nearly 130,000 men and women from roughly middle age to their senior and elderly years.
Over the 20-some years of the study, nearly 1,400 men and more than 2,600 women had a stroke. To see what influence different types of dietary protein had on the risk of stroke, the researchers divided up the people in the study based on how much red meat, poultry, fish, dairy and other sources of protein they typically ate each day.
Men who ate more than two servings of red meat each day, which was at the high end of the meat eaters, had a 28 per cent increased risk of stroke compared to men who on average had a third of a serving of red meat each day, the low end of the meat eaters.
Women who ate nearly two servings of red meat a day had a 19 per cent higher risk of stroke than women who ate less than half a serving each day.
Swapping in one serving of poultry lowered stroke risk by 27 per cent, a serving of nuts or fish was linked to a 17 per cent drop, and a serving of dairy dropped the risk by 10 to 11 per cent. A serving of red meat was considered to be 113 to 170 grams (4 to 6 oz) of beef, or a hamburger patty. A serving of poultry was considered to be 113 grams. People who ate the most chicken or turkey each day, about a half serving for women and three-quarters of a serving for men, had a 13 per cent reduced risk of stroke compared with those who ate barely more than a serving a day.
Researchers did not prove that beef is to blame for the increased number of strokes, but Adam Bernstein, lead author of the study, said it could be that the fat and iron in red meat play a role.
An earlier study led by Susanna Larsson at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden, also found that eating red meat had a link to the risk of stroke.
“I do not think that poultry has been considered as a protein source that might lower the risk of stroke. This is new,” Larsson told Reuters Health in an email.
One surprise was that fish seemed to offer no protection against stroke, although Bernstein said it was possible that the benefits of fish depend on how it’s served. “There’s a lot of variation in how people cook and prepare fish, and we couldn’t get down to that level,” he said.

22-Feb-2012, 09:48 PM
Obesity rates rise, threaten health

21 February 2012
LONDON - More people in developed countries are overweight or obese than ever before, dooming them to years of ill health, pushing up healthcare costs and piling more pressure on health systems, a report by the OECD found on Tuesday.
The Paris-based Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development found obesity rates vary widely from a low of 4 percent in Japan and Korea to 30 percent or more in the United States and Mexico.
But in more than half of the 34 OECD countries, at least one in two people is now overweight or obese, and rates are projected to rise further. In some countries, two out of three people will be obese within 10 years, the report said.
“(These people) will die early, and send healthcare costs ever higher,” the report’s authors wrote.
Experts say severely obese people die on average eight to 10 years sooner than people at normal weight, with every 15 extra kg increasing risk of early death by around 30 percent.
Obesity, defined by the World Health Organisation as a body mass index of more than 30, is estimated to be responsible for between 1 and 3 percent of total health spending in most countries - and for between 5 and 10 percent in the United States - and “costs will rise rapidly in coming years as obesity related diseases set in”, the OECD report said.
Body mass index or BMI is a measurement which compares weight and height. People are defined as overweight if their BMI is greater than 25 kg per metre squared (kg/m2) and obese if it is greater than 30 kg/m2.
A large global study last year found that more than half a billion people, or one in 10 adults worldwide, were obese and that the obesity epidemic was rapidly spilling over from wealthy into poorer nations.
This report, which the OECD said was a 2012 update to its 2010 report on the economics of obesity prevention entitled “Fit Not Fat”, did however find some good news.
New data for 10 of the 34 OECD countries showed that over the past decade, obesity rates slowed or stopped growing in England, Hungary, Italy, Korea and Switzerland, and grew by only 2 to 3 percent in France and Spain. Yet in Canada, Ireland and the United States obesity rates rose by 4 to 5 percent.
Looking at childhood obesity, rates have stabilised England, France, Korea and the United States and the OECD said this was partly due to governments stepping up efforts to tackle the root causes of obesity.
It noted that some governments, including those in Denmark, Finland, France, Hungary, had passed legislation in 2011 imposing higher tax rates on high-fat or high-sugar foods.

13-Apr-2012, 02:41 AM
New compound staves off obesity
(IANS) 7 April 2012 WASHINGTON -

A compound present in grapes and other fruits could potentially stave off obesity by blocking the development of fat cells.
Kee-Hong Kim, assistant professor of food science at Purdue University, and Jung Yeon Kwon, a graduate student, reported that this compound piceatannol blocks an immature fat cell’s ability to develop and grow.
While similar in structure to resveratrol - the compound in red wine, grapes and peanuts that is believed to combat cancer, heart disease and neurodegenerative diseases - piceatannol might be an important weapon against obesity, the Journal of Biological Chemistry reports.
Resveratrol is converted to piceatannol in humans after consumption, said Kim, according to a Purdue university statement. “Piceatannol actually alters the timing of gene expressions, gene functions and insulin action during adipogenesis, the process in which early stage fat cells become mature fat cells,” Kim said. “In the presence of piceatannol, you can see delay or complete inhibition of adipogenesis,” said Kim.
Over a period of 10 days or more, immature fat cells, called preadipocytes, go through several stages to become mature fat cells, or adipocytes.

13-Apr-2012, 02:47 AM
Spring into spring
Samineh I. Shaheem (Out of Mind) 31 March 2012

Look around, take a deep breath; spring is here! Hopefully you won’t inhale any sand particles due to the recent dust storms we have all had to endure or be sneezing incessantly because of the rising pollen in the air.
Still, the dawning of a new cycle should be refreshing and rejuvenating, representing another opportunity for us to begin this beautiful season of hope by looking at all the significantly colourful and complex variables affecting our psychological and physical well-being.
So the same way we would ‘spring clean’ our homes, we should also take some time to spring clean our lives. Our minds can get cluttered with things we don’t need, accumulated dust, disorganized dimensions, bad habits, and previously formed ideas and impressions that should be thrown away or at least reconsidered for accuracy and consistency.
This is a period to engage in a kind of life inventory; to get rid of what you don’t need and retain all that has proved beneficial. In doing so, you are reminded about everything that you’ve accomplished, how you were inspired and what you can do to continue improving and discovering your life’s purpose. Of course this takes effort, honesty, courage and a conscious determination to want to invite change into your life.
So let’s roll up our sleeves, put on our gloves and begin.
· Open the windows of your mind – This is a great chance to broaden your understanding of people and places, to allow new insights and experiences, challenge old assumptions and learn new thing.
· Dispose of misunderstandings – If you have recently had an argument with someone and not talked to them for a while, throw out the misunderstanding and try to reconcile. Let the clean fresh scent of understanding and friendship back into your life. Bottled up anger and resentment can be poisonous for your health
· Unwrap a new hobby — What better time to awaken the artist in you? Perhaps start a book club? Join a Zumba class?
· Polish up procrastination – Nothing creates more anxiety than procrastinating on a task that you know needs to be completed. Don’t delay it; choose to confront it so that you can enjoy the celebratory sensations of achievement.
· Carve out some ‘nothing time’ – when was the last time you simply stared out the window, allowing your mind to be guided by your heart? Drop the phone, computer and any other distractions and just enjoy the view.
· Unblock pleasing sounds and block out noise – Psychological research has proven that irritating noise can raise stress levels by up to 30 per cent. So instead put on your favourite music more often and experience relaxation washing over you.
· Dust off your talents – Life has a way of keeping us busy. So much that we forget about our creative characteristics. Think about what you used to enjoy and were good at and plan to get into it again. When we master routine, we make room for creativity.
· Omit old habits – Start by making a list of any negative behaviours or habits you may have. The top culprits are smoking, bad eating habits, not sleeping enough and sedentary lifestyle with no exercise. If you can begin any of these, you will feel the incredible health advantages gained within the first week.
· Scrub up your finances – Are you behind in some bills? Do you have a budgeting structure? Are you in control of your spending? This is an area that needs to be managed proactively and very carefully. The good news is that if financial issues are not one of your strengths, you can seek advice from a professional who will get your money matters in order in no time
· Brush up your relationship – Think about the way you have been interacting during the last few months. How effective is your communication? Do you understand one another? Are you best friends? Do you have mutual respect for each other?

Don’t forget how blessed you are and begin renewing your appreciation for your life and those around. Focus more on all that you don’t need rather than everything you keep waiting or hoping for.
So as you blossom while taking stock of your life and make necessary changes, don’t be afraid to throw away redundant items and behaviours. This is your chance to pave the way to a cleaner and clearer future.
Remember, learning more, results in living more… Samineh I Shaheem is an author, an assistant professor of psychology, currently lecturing in Dubai, as well as a cross-cultural consultant at HRI. She has studied and worked in different parts of the world, including the USA, Canada, UK, Netherlands, and the UAE. She co-hosts a radio program (Psyched Sundays 10-12pm) every Sunday morning on Dubai Eye 103.8 FM discussing the most relevant psychological issues in our community.
Please forward your thoughts and suggestions for future articles to OutOfMindContact@gmail.com (OutOfMindContact@gmail.com)

17-Apr-2012, 08:04 PM
Study: Turmeric extract may protect heart after surgery

(Reuters) / 16 April 2012

Extracts from turmeric spice, known for their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, may help ward off heart attacks in people who have had recent bypass surgery, according to a study from Thailand.http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/turmeric_1604.jpgDuring bypass surgery the heart muscle can be damaged by prolonged lack of blood flow, increasing the patient’s risk of heart attack. But the new findings, published in the peer-reviewed American Journal of Cardiology, suggest that curcumins - the yellow pigment in turmeric - may ease those risks when added to traditional drug treatment.
The conclusions are based on a relatively small group of subjects and needs to be confirmed in larger studies, said researchers led by Wanwarang Wongcharoen from Chiang Mai University. Turmeric extracts have long been used in traditional Chinese and Indian medicine.
Research has suggested inflammation plays an important role in the development of a range of diseases, including heart disease, and curcumins could have an effect on those pathways, said Bharat Aggarwal, who studies the use of curcumins in cancer therapy at the MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas.
“It’s very, very encouraging,” said Aggarwal of the study, which he did not take part in.
The researchers studied 121 patients who had non-emergency bypass surgery at their hospital between 2009 and 2011.
Half of those patients were given one-gram curcumin capsules to take four times a day, starting three days before their surgery and continuing for five days afterwards. The other half took the same number of drug-free placebo capsules.
The researchers found that during their post-bypass hospital stays, 13 percent of patients who’d been taking curcumins had a heart attack, compared to 30 percent in the placebo group.
After accounting for any initial pre-surgery differences, Wongcharoen and his colleagues calculated that people on curcumins had a 65 percent lower chance of heart attack.
Researchers said it’s likely that the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of curcumins may have helped limit heart damage in the patients.
“Curcumin has for many years now been shown to reduce inflammation and to reduce oxygen toxicity or damage caused by free radicals in a number of experimental settings,” said Jawahar Mehta, a cardiologist at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in Little Rock, who didn’t work on the study.
“But that doesn’t mean that this is a substitute for medication,” he said, noting that drugs like aspirin, statins and beta blockers have been proven to help heart patients and people in the current study were taking those as well.
One limitation was that the study was relatively small. Another is that while curcumins are thought to be safe, there could be side effects at very large doses.
“Taken in moderation or used in cooking, (curcumins) are quite useful. But I wouldn’t go to a health food store and start taking four grams of curcumin a day, as was done in this study,” Mehta said.

17-Apr-2012, 08:09 PM
Doctors try to keep human touch in age of gadgets

Lauran Neergaard (AP) / 31 March 2012

As the United States moves to paperless medicine, doctors are grappling with an awkward challenge: How do they tap the promise of computers, smartphones and iPads in the exam room without losing the human connection with their patients? Are the gadgets a boon or a distraction?“That’s the tension I feel every day,” says Dr. Vincent WinklerPrins, a family medicine specialist at Georgetown University. The medical school is developing one of a growing number of programs to train new doctors in that balancing act, this one using actors as patients to point out the problems ahead of time.

Across the country at Stanford University this summer, medical students will bring a school-issued iPad along as they begin their bedside training — amid cautions not to get so lost in all the on-screen information that they pay too little attention to the patient.
Face your patient, excuse yourself to check the screen and put away the gadget when you don’t really need it, say Stanford guidelines that specialists say make sense for physicians everywhere. And, of course, no personal Internet use in front of a patient.
“The promise of these devices to augment the delivery of clinical care is tremendous,” says Stanford’s Dr. Clarence Braddock. He uses a secure app on his iPad to pull up patient charts if he’s called after hours, no matter where he is.
Braddock helped develop Stanford’s standards understanding there are different hurdles. Middle-aged doctors may be less comfortable with the technology and take longer with it. Younger ones who grew up texting while multitasking may not realise how intrusive patients might find the devices. Even Braddock has a confession: To his embarrassment, his phone once beeped an email alert about a sports tournament while he was with a patient.
It’s not just a matter of etiquette. If the doctor spends too much of your 15-minute visit typing or staring at a screen, you have to wonder: What if I have a symptom that just got missed?
“If the screen is turned away from the patient, they don’t know if you’re looking at their electronic health record or playing solitaire or looking up stocks,” notes Dr. Glen Stream of the American Academy of Family Physicians. A longtime user of computerised records, Stream makes sure to show his patients what he’s doing — especially when seeing pictures on the screen can help them better understand a health condition.
Electronic health records, or EHRs, are considered the future of health care for good reason — they can help prevent medical errors. For example, the systems can warn if doctors are about to prescribe a drug that could interact badly with another one the patient already uses. As these computerised charts become more sophisticated, they also have the potential to spur more efficient care: no more getting another X-ray just because you forgot to bring in your last scan if the doctor can call it up digitally.
About a third of doctors report using electronic records, double the number since 2008, says a report this month in the journal Health Affairs.
Georgetown’s WinklerPrins limits screen time in front of his own patients by typing notes into their charts after they leave.
A group of actors gathered at Georgetown one recent morning, each there to play the role of an older diabetic seeking care for the first time since a spouse’s death. WinklerPrins watched on a monitor outside the room as medical students conducted a 15-minute office visit. They used computerised records while giving each actor-patient test results, setting a treatment plan and sending an electronic prescription to the pharmacy.
Afterward, the ‘patients’ offered valuable feedback. One was irritated that her would-be doctor got stuck e-prescribing and, her mind on the computer, kept repeating the same question rather than saying, “Give me a minute.”
The students see the value of electronic health records but also how easy it is to be distracted.
Hopefully, the systems will get less clunky, WinklerPrins said: “We don’t lose, in the meantime, the focus on the patient.”

24-Apr-2012, 08:07 PM
Low-fat dairy foods can lower stroke risk

(IANS) / 21 April 2012

People who drink low-fat milk and eat low-fat curd and cheese have a lowered stroke risk compared to those who consume full-fat dairy foods, says a new study.Researchers who surveyed 74,961 adults aged 45 to 83 found that those who ate low-fat dairy foods had a 12 percent lower risk of stroke and a 13 percent lower risk of ischemic stroke (when an artery to the brain is blocked) than those who ate high-fat dairy foods.
Participants were free of heart disease, stroke and cancer at the start of the study. All completed a 96-item food and beverage questionnaire to determine dietary habits.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/lowfat_2104.jpgFood and drink consumption frequency was divided into eight categories, ranging from never to four servings per day, the journal Stroke reports.
“This is the largest study to date to examine the association between consumption of total, low-fat, full-fat and specific dairy foods and the risk of stroke in adult men and women,” said Susanna Larsson, associate professor of epidemiology at the National Institute of Environmental Medicine, Karolinska Institute, Sweden, who led the study.
During the 10-year follow-up, 4,089 strokes occurred (1,680 in women and 2,409 in men), 3,159 ischemic, 583 hemorrhagic and 347 unspecified strokes, according to a Karolinska statement.
“From a public health perspective, if people consume more low-fat dairy foods rather than high-fat dairy foods, they will benefit from a reduced risk of stroke and other positive health outcomes,” added Larsson.
“It is possible that vitamin D in low-fat dairy foods may explain, in part, the observed lowered risk of stroke in this study because of its potential effect on blood pressure,” Larsson said.

27-Apr-2012, 08:12 PM
Eating berries may slow brain’s decline: study

(AFP) / 26 April 2012

Women who eat plenty of blueberries and strawberries experience slower mental decline with age than women who consume fewer of the flavonoid-rich fruits, a US study said on Thursday.Based on a survey of more than 16,000 women who filled out regular questionnaires on their health habits from 1976 through 2001, the findings showed that those who ate the most berries delayed cognitive decline by up to 2.5 years.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/berry1_27042012.jpgEvery two years from 1995 to 2001, researchers measured mental function in subjects over age 70, according to the study published in the Annals of Neurology.
“We provide the first epidemiologic evidence that berries may slow progression of cognitive decline in elderly women,” said Elizabeth Devore, a doctor with Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston, Massachusetts.
“Our findings have significant public health implications as increasing berry intake is a fairly simple dietary modification to test cognition protection in older adults.”
Devore added that the findings are of particular importance to the aging population, which is on the rise.
The number of Americans aged 65 and older grew 15 percent from 2000 to 2010, according to the US Census.
Robert Graham, an internist at New York’s Lenox Hill Hospital who was not involved with the study, said eating more berries is good idea for people of any age.
“Large epidemiological studies, such as this one, add to the basic science research that the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of berries have a beneficial role in age-related cognitive decline,” said Graham.
“I would advise all my patients, at any age, to eat more berries. Berries are an easy, nutritious and delicious way to preserve brain function.”
Flavonoids are antioxidants that are found in berries, apples, citrus fruits, tea, red wine and onions, and previous research has shown they may reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes and cancer.
“The current study demonstrates that women who consumed the most flavonoids, especially berries, had a slower cognitive decline over time than women with lower intakes,” said Nancy Copperman, director of public health initiatives at North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System in New York.
“Increasing our intakes of fruits and vegetables is one of the best ways to live a healthy life.”

27-Apr-2012, 08:13 PM
Intense light reduces heart attack risks

(IANS) / 27 April 2012

Intense white light may be the latest way to prevent heart attacks besides other ways like cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), aspirin and clot-busters, according to a study.“The study suggests that strong light, or even just daylight, might ease the risk of having a heart attack or suffering damage from one,” says Tobias Eckle, associate professor of anesthesiology, cardiology, and cell and developmental biology at the University of Colorado School of Medicine.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/light1_2704.jpg“For patients, this could mean that daylight exposure inside the hospital could reduce the damage that is caused by a heart attack,” adds Eckle.
What’s the connection between light and a myocardial infarction, commonly known as a heart attack? The answer lies, perhaps surprisingly, in the circadian rhythm, the body’s clock that is linked to light and dark.
The circadian clock is regulated by proteins in the brain. But the proteins are in other organs as well, including the heart, according to a Colorado statement.
Eckle and Holger Eltzschig, Colorado professor of anesthesiology, found that one of those proteins, called Period 2, plays a crucial role in fending off damage from a heart attack.
During a heart attack, little or no oxygen reaches the heart. Without oxygen, the heart has to switch from its usual fuel - fat - to glucose. Without that change in heart metabolism, cells die and the heart is damaged And here’s where the circadian rhythm comes in.
The study showed that the Period 2 protein is vital for that change in fuel, from fat to glucose, and therefore could make heart metabolism more efficient. In fact, Strong daylight activated Period 2 in animals and minimized damage from a heart attack.

02-May-2012, 01:50 AM
‘Beetroot boosts runners’ speed, stamina’

(IANS) / 28 April 2012

Beetroot seems to boost the speed and stamina of runners because of the presence of high levels of performance-enhancing chemicals called nitrates, says a study at the St. Louis University in the US.http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/beetroot1new_28042012.jpgResearchers recruited 11 fit and healthy men and women and got them to twice run 5 km on a treadmill—first, after asking them to consume a portion of baked beetroot just over an hour before the exercise.
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. The result showed that after eating the relish, they averaged 11.9 km per hour, the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics reports.
But after scoffing beetroot, their average speed was up to 12.3 km per hour.
Researchers said runners appear to be able to maintain their speed for longer if they have eaten the vegetable, according to the Daily Mail.
They also reported that “during the last 1.1 miles of the run, speed was five percent faster in the beetroot trial. Consumption of nitrate-rich, whole beetroot improves running performance in healthy adults”.
The findings support earlier research, published in 2009, by British scientists which suggested drinking beetroot juice could have a powerful effect on stamina and endurance, as well as lower blood pressure.

02-May-2012, 02:09 AM
Good information about this topic on following blog:


03-May-2012, 10:08 PM
صاحب، اس سب مععلومات کا بہت بہت شکريہ- اگر ميں ان سب کو پرنٹ کر کہ اکاٹھا کو دوں تو يقينا" ایک کتابچہ شا‏‏عیہ کر سکوں گا- جزاک اللہ خير-

05-May-2012, 03:30 AM
Vitamins E, C no help against vision disorder

(Reuters) / 4 May 2012

Taking vitamins E and C may do nothing to protect aging eyes from macular degeneration—the leading cause of vision loss in older adults, a new clinical trial finds.Researchers had been hoping the vitamins, both antioxidants, could shield against the tissue erosion that occurs in macular degeneration. The condition involves damage to the center of the retina, which makes it hard to see fine details.
Studies have found that people who get more antioxidants in their diet have a lower risk of macular degeneration. But that doesn’t rule out other possible diet or lifestyle explanations behind the link.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/health1_04052012.jpgAnd so far, clinical trials using vitamin E have come up empty.
This latest study is the longest-running one to test vitamin E for eyesight in men, and the first to try out vitamin C alone, said lead researcher William G. Christen, of Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston.
It found no benefits of either vitamin in older men who took supplements for eight years.
No one study can be the final word on the vitamins and macular degeneration, Christen told Reuters Health in an email. On the other hand, the findings also offer no evidence to support taking vitamins E or C to ward off vision problems.
The report, which appears in the journal Ophthalmology, is part of an ongoing study of more than 14,000 U.S. male doctors age 50 and older.
The men were randomly assigned to take either 400 international units (IU) of vitamin E or a placebo pill every other day, along with a daily dose of either 500 milligrams of vitamin C or a placebo.
That meant the men were either taking both vitamins, only one of them, or neither.
After eight years, 193 men had developed macular degeneration that was serious enough to interfere with their vision. But the risk was nearly identical among vitamin and placebo users.
In the U.S., an estimated 7.2 million people have some degree of macular degeneration, and 890,000 of them have advanced disease.
But the rate of new cases may be on the decline.
A study last year estimated that less than seven percent of Americans age 40 and up have macular degeneration. That was down from more than nine percent in research from the early 1990s (see Reuters Health story of January 11, 2011).
The researchers were not sure of the reasons for the decline. But they speculated that a dip in smoking rates could be one factor.
“A large body of evidence supports cigarette smoking as an important cause of age-related macular degeneration,” Christen said.
“So avoiding or quitting cigarette smoking appears to be one way to lower your risk,” he added.
But based on the current results, Christen’s team writes, vitamins E and C are “unlikely to have an important effect on the incidence of early age-related macular degeneration.”
The researchers note, though, that their study group was a generally “well-nourished” bunch. They say it’s possible the results would be different in people who have vitamin-deficient diets.

09-May-2012, 03:39 AM
A breakthrough in Alzhemier’s or Parkinson’s treatment?

(IANS) / 8 May 2012

Injecting a protein into the brain could protect its nerve cells from prion disease, a condition which causes the brain to wither away, says a new study.http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/health1r_07052012.jpgBecause the process by which prion disease affects mice brains is similar to some degenerative brain conditions in humans, scientists are hoping that the findings could be a breakthrough in the treatment of Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s.
In each case, brain cell death is linked to the build-up of misshapen proteins, forming plaques in the brains of Alzheimer’s sufferers and lewy bodies in the nerve cells of those with Parkinson’s, the journal Nature reports.
In the mice with prion disease, researchers found that when the faulty proteins begin to accumulate, their cells activated a defence mechanism which halted the production of such proteins, according to the Telegraph.
The halt ought to be temporary, but in the diseased mice the production of proteins, crucial to cell survival, did not start up again.
Scientists found that by injecting a different protein which prevents the supply from being “switched off”, they could protect the mice’s brain cells for longer and extend their lives.
Giovanna Mallucci, professor at Leicester University, who led the research, said that it could provide a “way forward in how we treat other disorders.”
Roger Morris, professor at the School of Biomedical Sciences at King’s College London, described the findings as a “major breakthrough” and said there were “good reasons” for thinking it could also apply to Alzheimer’s.
But Eric Karran, of Alzheimer’s Research UK, warned that the research on the prion protein was in its “early stages” and added: “We would need to see the same results confirmed in Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s to really strengthen the evidence.”

09-May-2012, 03:41 AM
Garlic beats antibiotics in quelling food-borne illness

(IANS) / 5 May 2012

Researchers have isolated a compound in garlic that is a 100 times more potent than popular antibiotics in combating Campylobacter bacteria, one of the commonest causes of intestinal illness.Some 2.4 million Americans alone are affected by Campylobacter every year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, with symptoms including diarrhoea, cramping, abdominal pain and fever.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/garlic_0042012.jpg“This work is very exciting to me because it shows that this compound (diallyl sulphide) has the potential to reduce disease-causing bacteria in the environment and in our food supply,” says Xiaonan Lu, postdoctoral researcher at the Washington State University, who led the study.
Lu and colleagues looked at the ability of the garlic compound, diallyl sulphide, to kill the bacteria when it is protected by a slimy biofilm that makes it 1,000 times more resistant to antibiotics, the Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy reports.
They found the compound can easily penetrate the protective biofilm and kill bacterial cells by combining with a sulphur-containing enzyme, changing the enzyme’s function and effectively shutting down cell metabolism, according to a Washington statement.
The researchers found that diallyl sulphide was as much as 100 times effective than much of the antibiotics erythromycin and ciprofloxacin and would often work in a fraction of the time.
“This is the first step in developing or thinking about new intervention strategies. Campylobacter is simply the most common bacterial cause of food-borne illness in the United States and probably the world,” says Michael Konkel, study co-author who has been researching Campylobacter jejuni for 25 years.
Previously, Lu and colleagues found that diallyl sulphide effectively kills important foodborne pathogens, such as listeria monocytogenes and Escherichia coli O157:H7.

09-May-2012, 03:43 AM
Mixing drugs, herb remedies can damage health

(IANS) / 3 May 2012


http://www.khaleejtimes.com/ktads/302rn5v.png (http://www.khaleejtimes.com/kt-article-display-1.asp?xfile=/data/health/2012/May/health_May6.xml&section=health#) 1/1 http://www.khaleejtimes.com/ktads/lzkux.png (http://www.khaleejtimes.com/kt-article-display-1.asp?xfile=/data/health/2012/May/health_May6.xml&section=health#)

Herbal, dietary, energy or nutritional supplements may be good for one’s well being, but if combined with common drugs they can damage health.“’Natural’ does not equal ‘safe,’” and the effects and interactions of herbal or dietary supplements and functional foods such as energy drinks or nutritional bars can be difficult to predict, says Catherine Ulbricht, senior attending pharmacist at Massachusetts General Hospital.
“If something has a therapeutic action in a human body, this substance can also cause a reaction or an interaction,” added Ulbricht, the journal Alternative and Complementary Therapies reports.
The risk for interactions is greatest in younger and older people and in individuals with multiple health conditions or who take multiple medications, explains Ulbricht.
Common examples include an increased risk of significant bleeding tied with garlic, ginkgo, ginger and saw palmetto supplements; decreased blood sugar as a result of chromium, cinnamon, whey protein, and others; hormonal effects of dong quai, black cohosh, kudzu, and saw palmetto; and elevated blood pressure caused by bloodroot, green tea, hawthorn, and mate.

10-May-2012, 06:44 PM
Compound in apple, onion can beat blood clots

(IANS) / 10 May 2012

Rutin, a chemical present in apple, orange, onion and green and black tea, not only keeps blood clots at bay but can also be part of the treatment against heart attacks and strokes, a study says.http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/health_1005.jpg

Harvard researchers found that the compound helped block a potentially dangerous enzyme involved in the formation of blood clots. Called protein disulfide isomerase (PDI), the enzyme is released very quickly when blood clots form in the arteries and veins.

Robert Flaumenhaft, professor at the Harvard Medical School, US, who led the study, said: “Rutin proved to be the most potently anti-thrombotic (clotting) compound that we ever tested in this model.
“Clots occur in both arteries and in veins. Clots in arteries are platelet-rich, while those in veins are fibrin-rich. This discovery suggests that a single agent can treat and prevent both types of clots,” added Flaumenhaft, the Journal of Clinical Investigation reports.
Researchers tested the ability of 500 different chemicals - including rutin - to block PDI using scientific models on computers. They found that rutin to be the most effective, which protected from blood clots that occur in arteries and veins, according to the Daily Mail.
In future researchers hope to use rutin in treatments that could be used in patients at the risk of heart attacks and strokes.

10-May-2012, 07:01 PM
Source: http://www.menshealth.com/nutrition/vitamin-b12

Daily Value: 6 mcg
Safe Upper Limit: 3,000 mcg
Good Food Sources: Clams, ham, herring, king crab, oysters (cooked), salmon, tuna

Healing Powers
Also called cobalamin, B12 is vital to the production of myelin, the fatty sheath that insulates nerve fibers, keeping electrical impulses moving through the body as they should. Because of this important function, a whole host of problems can arise when B12 is in short supply: memory loss, confusion, delusion, fatigue, loss of balance, decreased reflexes, impaired touch or pain perception, numbness and tingling in the arms and legs, tinnitus, and noise-induced hearing loss. Deficiencies of B12 have also been linked to multiple sclerosis-like symptoms and dementia. "In a severe deficiency, there is actually a degeneration of the myelin sheath," says John Pinto, PhD, director of the nutrition research laboratory at American Health Foundation in Valhalla, NY.

But that's only the beginning of vitamin B12's importance. Researchers have discovered that a deficiency raises blood levels of a substance known as homocysteine. In addition to being toxic to brain cells in high doses--raising serious questions about its possible role in Alzheimer's disease--homocysteine may be one of the primary causes of heart disease. "It has been shown to activate a clotting system that makes blood cells become a little more adhesive, a little more sticky, making them cling to arterial walls," says Pinto. There's evidence that in some people, the accumulation of homocysteine may be caused by a genetic defect, but in others it's simply the result of a vitamin B12 deficiency (although shortages of folate and vitamin B6 can do the same).

Because vitamin B12 is also important for the production of red blood cells, a severe deficiency can lead to a condition called pernicious anemia, which can lower energy levels. "When you take B12, you will almost immediately see a burst of activity in the bone marrow--more cells--and that will mean more oxygen-carrying capacity to tissues," says Pinto.

Unfortunately, however, 10 to 30% of people over age 50 can't get enough B12 from their normal diet because their stomach doesn't secrete enough gastric acid to break down food so that B12 can be stored in the liver and muscles until it's needed. (If you have absorption problems, doctors recommend using sublingual B12 tablets--taken by placing them under the tongue--or a B12 nasal gel, both available in health food stores.)

Buyer's Guide
Unless you're vegan and avoid all animal products, it's easy to get adequate amounts of vitamin B12 from food sources because you need so little of it. There's probably no need to take a supplement, therefore, unless you've been instructed by your doctor. Vegans should look for B12-fortified products or take a supplement.

Safety Check
Vitamin B12 supplements are considered extremely safe, even in larger doses. People suffering from any of the following conditions, however, should check first with their doctor before supplementing with this vitamin: folate deficiency, iron deficiency, any kind of infection, Leber's disease, polycythemia vera (a condition marked by an abnormal increase of red blood cells), or uremia (a toxic accumulation in the blood of substances in the urine).

Read more at Men's Health: http://www.menshealth.com/nutrition/vitamin-b12#ixzz1uTHpfomt

10-May-2012, 09:11 PM
Most people know that a good sex life has endless physical and psychological health benefits, including a stronger immune system, better breathing and circulation and healthier skin. A good sex life can also relieve chronic pain and reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety. But did you know that better nutrition can help you have that good sex life? Read on for an overview about some vitamins that can help you lead a better sex life as well as increase your overall health. Keep in mind that as much as possible, your vitamin supply should come from the food and drink you consume, rather than vitamin supplements. Sex and Vitamin A: Vitamin A is essential for normal reproduction, and a deficiency of Vitamin A has been shown to cause atrophy of the testicles and ovaries in male and female rats, leading to sterlization. A deficiency in vitamin A is also thought to result in a decreased production of sex hormones as well as dry, scaly skin (it is needed for soft and beautiful skin). Some good sources of vitamin A are fish, eggs, cheese, yogurt, green leafy vegetables and yellow fruit.
Sex and Vitamin B-1: Vitamin B-1 is essential to energy production and the metobolism of carbohydrates, proteins and fats, so a deficiency of vitamin B-1 can lead to decreased energy and reduced sex drive. More symptoms of deficiency include fatigue, decreased alertness, constipation and heart symptoms (like rapid heartbeat). Some good sources of vitamin B-1 are nuts, asparagus, beans, pineapple, whole wheat, brown rice and other whole grains.
Sex and Vitamin B-3: Deficiency of vitamin B-3, also called niacin, can lead to skin eruptions, bowel problems and even mental problems. Sex life is impacted by the presence of vitamin B-3 because it increases blood flow to the extremities, including the brain. Problems with the nerve and digestive systems caused by vitamin B-3 deficiency can negatively affect your sex life. Some good sources of vitamin B-3 are lean meat, chicken, fish, broccoli and yogurt.
Sex and Vitamin C: Vitamin C influences a good sex life with its role in the absorption of iron, the formation of blood cells and the metabolism of the adrenal gland, all processes that affect your sex life. Iron helps oxygenation of the tissues for energy production, while blood carries oxygen, hormones and nutrients to the organs, glands and tissues. The adrenal gland produces lots of hormones that influence your sex life, including a hormone that helps to stimulate orgasm. In addition, vitamin C also strengthens your immune system, protects against stress and helps keep your joints limber and active. Can you see all the potential benefits from vitamin C? Good sources of vitamin C include strawberries, tomatoes and other citrus fruits, like oranges.
Several other vitamins, including vitamin D, vitamin E and folic acid, have direct and indirect effects on a good sex life and good health in general. The next step is to plan meals accordingly so that you naturally consume enough of these vitamins to reap the benefits they have to offer. Keep in mind that consumption of these vitamins for a better sex life and better health should be a lifelong priority, rather than a short-term nutrition or weight loss goal.

Source: http://voices.yahoo.com/sex-vitamins-better-sex-life-through-181933.html

15-May-2012, 11:05 PM
Scientists pinpoint schizophrenia genes

(AFP) / 15 May 2012

Scientists claimed Tuesday to have pinpointed the genes most responsible for schizophrenia in a breakthrough they say will allow better diagnosis and treatment of the debilitating mental illness.In a study involving genetic information from thousands of schizophrenia patients as well as healthy controls, the researchers said they identified hundreds of genes that can show who is most at risk.
“We broke the genetic code for schizophrenia, identifying many of the genes involved and how they work together to produce the illness,” study author Alexander Niculescu of the Indiana University School of Medicine in Indianapolis told AFP.
“By better understanding the genetic and biological basis of the illness, we can develop better tests for it as well as better treatments.”
Such tests could be used to determine whether children in families with schizophrenia were at risk of developing the illness, said Niculescu.
“If they are determined to be at higher risk, then they would be followed more closely by doctors, told the avoid stress, alcohol and drugs, treated with counselling, nutritional supplements (like Omega-3 fish oil capsules) and even anti-psychotic medications early on to prevent the development of full-blown illness.”
The findings are published in the Nature journal Molecular Psychiatry.
Schizophrenia patients typically hear voices that are not real, tend toward paranoia and suffer from disorganised speech and thinking. The condition is thought to affect about one in every hundred people.
Niculescu said that after pinpointing the genes involved in schizophrenia, the research team tested their findings in other patients outside the study group “to show that the results were reproducible and have predictive ability”.
Genetic studies in psychiatry often tended to produce initial excitement, he said, “but are then not reproduced in independent populations, which is the most important proof that a finding is solid and real.”
The team also used brain data from mice put on drugs to mimic schizophrenia.
“Some of the genes and biological mechanisms we identified can be used for new drug development,” said Niculescu.
It could also be used to redirect drugs currently used to treat other disorders.
Niculescu stressed that “genes are not destiny”.
“The environment plays a role as well. The genes we identified play a role in brain connectivity, so can lead to more creativity in certain individuals or clinical illness in others, depending if you have too many of these genetic mutations, in the wrong combination and in a stressful environment.”

اجل کنول
19-May-2012, 02:11 AM
لہسن کے فوائد پر آرٹکل پوسٹ کرنے کا شکریہ۔ لیکن میں نے سنا ہے کہ پکے ہوئے لہسن کی تاثیر ختم ہو جاتی ہے۔ کیا اس کے بارے میںآپ کو کوئی علم ہے؟

Garlic beats antibiotics in quelling food-borne illness

(IANS) / 5 May 2012

Researchers have isolated a compound in garlic that is a 100 times more potent than popular antibiotics in combating Campylobacter bacteria, one of the commonest causes of intestinal illness.Some 2.4 million Americans alone are affected by Campylobacter every year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, with symptoms including diarrhoea, cramping, abdominal pain and fever.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/garlic_0042012.jpg“This work is very exciting to me because it shows that this compound (diallyl sulphide) has the potential to reduce disease-causing bacteria in the environment and in our food supply,” says Xiaonan Lu, postdoctoral researcher at the Washington State University, who led the study.
Lu and colleagues looked at the ability of the garlic compound, diallyl sulphide, to kill the bacteria when it is protected by a slimy biofilm that makes it 1,000 times more resistant to antibiotics, the Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy reports.
They found the compound can easily penetrate the protective biofilm and kill bacterial cells by combining with a sulphur-containing enzyme, changing the enzyme’s function and effectively shutting down cell metabolism, according to a Washington statement.
The researchers found that diallyl sulphide was as much as 100 times effective than much of the antibiotics erythromycin and ciprofloxacin and would often work in a fraction of the time.
“This is the first step in developing or thinking about new intervention strategies. Campylobacter is simply the most common bacterial cause of food-borne illness in the United States and probably the world,” says Michael Konkel, study co-author who has been researching Campylobacter jejuni for 25 years.
Previously, Lu and colleagues found that diallyl sulphide effectively kills important foodborne pathogens, such as listeria monocytogenes and Escherichia coli O157:H7.

19-May-2012, 02:57 AM
لہسن کے فوائد پر آرٹکل پوسٹ کرنے کا شکریہ۔ لیکن میں نے سنا ہے کہ پکے ہوئے لہسن کی تاثیر ختم ہو جاتی ہے۔ کیا اس کے بارے میںآپ کو کوئی علم ہے؟

I will do some research on it and let you know.

25-May-2012, 04:00 PM
Hijama (Arabic: حجامة‎ lit. "sucking") is the name in Arab traditional medicine for wet cupping, where blood is drawn by vacuum from a small skin incision for therapeutic purposes.

Hijama is generally performed by Muslims as it is a form of medicine specifically mentioned and encouraged by the Islamic prophet Muhammad pbuh.

Among other hadith, it is mentioned in that recorded by Muhammad al-Bukhari (5263) and Muslim ibn al-Hajjaj (2952), saying "The Hijama is the best of your remedies" (خير ما تداويتم به الحجامة).

What is cupping (hijama)?

Cupping (hijama) is the best remedy recommended and used by the Messenger r. The Messenger r said, "Indeed the best of remedies you have is cupping (hijama)…" [Saheeh al-Bukhaaree (5371)]. He r also said that on the night of Israa (his ascension to the heavens) he r did not pass by an angel except that it said to him, "Oh Muhammad, order your Ummah (nation) with cupping (hijama)." [Saheeh Sunan Tirmidhee (3479)]. This shows the importance and greatness of this Sunnah.

'Hijama' in arabic is derived from 'hajm' which means 'sucking'. Cupping (hijama) is the process of applying cups to various points on the body by removing the air inside the cups to form a vacuum.

Cupping (hijama) is of three types:

Dry cupping (hijama) - This is the process of using a vacuum on different areas of the body in order to gather the blood in that area without incisions (small, light scratches using a sterile surgical blade or).

Dry massage cupping (hijama) – This is similar to dry cupping (hijama) but olive oil is applied to the skin (before applying the cups) in order to allow easy movement of the cups.
70% of diseases, pains and ailments are due to the blood being unable to reach certain parts of the body. Dry cupping (hijama) and dry massaging cupping (hijama) allow the blood to reach these places.

Dry and massage cupping (hijama) may be self-administered in the comfort and privacy of your own home. Each cupping (hijama) box is accompanied by an instruction booklet. We have also provided further instructions on our 'How To Cup' page.

Dry and massage cupping (hijama) may be administered any time of the day, any day of the week or month. There are no restrictions.

Although dry and massage cupping (hijama) are very beneficial, they are not from the Sunnah. However, they fall under the general hadeeth:

The Messenger pbuh said, "For every disease there is a cure so if the medicine comes upon the disease it cures it by the will of Allah, the Most High." [Saheeh Muslim (2204)].

Wet cupping (hijama) - This is the process of using a vacuum at different points on the body but with small incisions in order to remove 'harmful' blood which lies just beneath the surface of the skin. (It is recommended that wet cupping (hijama) is only administered by a cupping therapist).


31-May-2012, 12:57 AM
اجل کنول (http://www.siasat.pk/forum/member.php?16948-%D8%A7%D8%AC%D9%84-%DA%A9%D9%86%D9%88%D9%84)

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Is Raw Garlic Really Better Than Cooked?Does Cooking Garlic Destroy Its Potential Health Benefits?

Ask any herbalist and he or she will tell you that, when it comes to herbs, "Raw is always better." Ever wonder if that's really true? Are raw herbs always more potent than cooked herbs? Does cooking really destroy an herb's potential healing properties? Well, when it comes to garlic, raw really is better than cooked. Every major healing modality in the world recognizes the potential health benefits of garlic. Ayurveda, the traditional folk medicine of India, regards garlic as a powerful rejuvenating and detoxifying medicine. Traditional Chinese medicine sees garlic as a liver and lung tonic capable of expelling parasites, easing coughs and even relieving genital itching. And, of course, here in North America, garlic is growing in popularity as a potent immune supporter.
Scientifically, garlic has been studied for a wide variety of medical conditions. While the research hasn't always produced positive results, garlic has shown at least some promise in the fight against high blood pressure, heart disease (http://voices.yahoo.com/topic/4291/heart_disease.html) and stroke. Garlic may also slow or stop the growth of some types of cancers. Garlic was even the focus of a 2007 study on hair loss in men.
If you're eating garlic for its potential health benefits, you should be aware that a 2007 study published in the March issue of Journal of Medicinal Food found that cooking garlic even for brief periods of time dramatically lessened garlic's antimicrobial actions. In this study researchers looked at garlic's antimicrobial effects on some of the most common human infections, including E. coli, the germs that cause strep and staph infections (http://voices.yahoo.com/theme/1443/infections.html) and the fungus that causes most yeast infections.
Raw Garlic Really Is Better
To study the effects of garlic on common infections, researchers extracted juice from fresh garlic then heated the juice to various temperatures for various lengths of time. In doing so, they found that garlic juice heated to the boiling point and held for as little as 30 minutes lost virtually all of its antimicrobial potential. Even boiling the garlic juice for as little as 5 or 10 minutes dramatically reduced its ability to destroy pathogens.
Getting The Most Of The Garlic You Eat
While this study on garlic's antimicrobial effects didn't produce any real surprises, it did confirm what herbalists have been saying for years. Raw is better. The study's authors advise people interested in using garlic for its potential health benefits to use fresh garlic and avoid boiling it for more than 5 minutes.
If you have any questions about garlic's possible role in your diet ask your doctor to refer you to a dietitian or nutritionist who can help you design a dietary plan that's perfect for you.
Al-Waili, N., et al (2007). Effects of heating, storage, and ultraviolet exposure on antimicrobial activity of garlic juice.
Hajheydari, Z., et al (2007). Combination of topical garlic gel and betamethasone valerate cream in the treatment of localized alopecia areata: a double-blind randomized controlled study.

31-May-2012, 12:58 AM
Does Cooking Fresh Garlic Destroy Its Health Benefits?

Is Cooked Garlic as Healthy as Raw?

http://l.yimg.com/ck/user/A1609/16093/40_16093.jpg (http://contributor.yahoo.com/user/16093/kristie_leong_md.html)Kristie Leong M.D. (http://contributor.yahoo.com/user/16093/kristie_leong_md.html), Yahoo! Contributor Network (https://contributor.yahoo.com/)
Feb 9, 2010
Garlic is one of the most commonly used spices in cooking. Not only does it add an enticing flavor to food, but it has some impressive health benefits. It's long been known for its heart healthy properties which may be related to its anti-inflammatory properties and its ability to reduce platelet clumping; but it also helps to fight off infection because of its antibacterial and antiviral properties. Fresh garlic cloves may also reduce the risk of some types of cancer - particularly stomach cancer. Unfortunately, when most people add it to their diet it's usually in the form of cooked garlic which may not have the same health properties as raw garlic cloves. Does cooking fresh garlic destroy its health benefits? Most of the health benefits of garlic come from the sulfur containing compounds it contains. The most notable is allicin. Allicin is responsible for the anti-bacterial, anti-viral, and anti-fungal properties of garlic and also helps to stomp out cancer cells and reduce their growth. In addition, it helps to prevent formation of cancer causing chemicals in the body. It's these strong sulfur compounds that linger on the breath after a meal - giving rise to "garlic breath".
Even though the sulfur compounds may do little for your breath, they're certainly good for your body. When a garlic clove is crushed, the sulfur compound allicin is released. Once exposed to the air, it starts to lose some of its potency, and when you cook garlic some of the sulfur compounds - particularly allicin - are slowly degraded. If you cook garlic in a microwave, you completely destroy the healthful sulfur components. Crushing the garlic clove releases allicin and makes its active ingredients more available, but cooking fresh garlic causes them to be partially destroyed. On the other hand, garlic is still a good source of flavonoids, selenium, and other sulfur compounds which aren't destroyed by the cooking process.
Obviously, cooking fresh garlic reduces some of its health benefits - but all is not lost. During the cooking process other intermediate sulfur containing compounds are formed that still have health benefits. It's primarily the anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties found in allicin that are lost when garlic is cooked. The anti-cancer and heart healthy properties are preserved even after cooking garlic since these benefits come from sulfur compounds other than allicin.
The bottom line? You'll still get some of the health benefits of garlic even if you only eat cooked garlic - as long as it's not cooked in a microwave. The anti-cancer benefits and the positive benefits for the heart remain intact, although you lose some of the anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties because of the breakdown of allicin. For the most benefits, eat cooked garlic and a little raw garlic too.

31-May-2012, 01:00 AM
http://l.yimg.com/ck/image/A3971/397110/300_397110.jpg (http://voices.yahoo.com/image/397110/index.html)
Knowing the Benefits of Garlic Other Than Being a Spice to FoodGoodness Garlic Gracious!http://l.yimg.com/ck/user/A2953/295340/40_295340.jpg (http://contributor.yahoo.com/user/295340/heide_lynne_canlas.html)Heide Lynne Canlas (http://contributor.yahoo.com/user/295340/heide_lynne_canlas.html), Yahoo! Contributor Network (https://contributor.yahoo.com/)
Nov 13, 2008

Garlic is godsend, not because folklore hails garlic as the ultimate ingredient in banishing evil spirits, but more especially because it boasts of a range of medicinal purposes. Taking in garlic has been said to boost the immune system, fight infection, lowers the risk of cancer and heart ailments, and does wonders for our blood circulation among many others. Garlic is a known bactericidal, anti-fungal, and anti-viral plant. This is why traditional herbal medical practitioners would advice rubbing garlic poultice over wounds. This procedure is also a recognized first-aid remedy over insect stings, dog bites, snake bites, and even allergic reactions of skin to certain plants.
Ringworm and athlete's foot, as well as other known fungal skin infection, can also be addressed by garlic poultice. Thrush, a fungal infection common among children and characterized by white patches and ulcers in the mouth and throat, can also be treated with garlic.
And as taking in garlic boosts the body's immune system, this helps our body combat viral infections (http://voices.yahoo.com/theme/1443/infections.html) such as colds and flu, resulting to a speedy recovery.
Moreover, garlic can help lower cholesterol (http://voices.yahoo.com/topic/10893/lower_cholesterol.html) levels in the blood by as much as 10 to 14 percent. Taking in garlic can also help balance blood sugar levels and lower blood pressure as it helps increase blood flow.
In addition to all of these, studies made by the National Cancer Institute have shown that garlic can lessen the incidence of stomach cancers. This is because garlic, like leeks and onions which belong to the allium family, contains a chemical called allicin which has recently been proven to address various diseases of the gastro-intestinal tract.
Eating garlic fresh is best for those who seek, not just its strong flavor, but its potent medicinal uses. Cooking decreases its value as heat allows its juices as well as its nutrients to evaporate. And while processed garlic, as in those found in herbal garlic food supplements, may not give you the pungent odor known to this amazing antidote, these definitely do not work as well for your health as fresh garlic does.
So when you're looking for and buying a garlic, choose one that's fresh so you can take advantage of the many benefits of this godsend ingredient!
"Garlic: The Wonder Food (http://www.healingdaily.com/detoxification-diet/garlic.htm)", Healing Daily

31-May-2012, 01:06 AM
Anti-Inflammatory Herbs That WorkMy Personal Success with These Anti-Inflammatory Herbshttp://l.yimg.com/ck/user/A8915/89150/40_89150.jpg (http://contributor.yahoo.com/user/89150/lyn_vaccaro.html)Lyn Vaccaro (http://contributor.yahoo.com/user/89150/lyn_vaccaro.html), Yahoo! Contributor Network (https://contributor.yahoo.com/)
Mar 25, 2012

Being a middle aged runner who has been running for over 30 years, I've found myself having to rely on a lot of anti-inflammatory medicines available, both alternative, as well as natural. As I've aged, I began to find that the natural ones were easier on my digestive system, and in the case of a spice called turmeric, actually soothed the indigestion I get from food allergies. So there began my love affair with herbs. I've taken a number of classes on herbs given through my employer from a number of herbalists at Outpost Natural Foods in Milwaukee, my hometown. I also am a big fan of Dr. Andrew Weil, a nutritionally minded M.D. Here are a few of these herbs that helped me with inflammation specifically and gave me the motivation to seek out anti-inflammatory herbs.
Turmeric (http://voices.yahoo.com/topic/40069/turmeric.html)
By far this is my favorite anti-inflammatory spice/herbs because of the effectiveness I experience with it. A constituent referred to as curcumin is the effective active ingredient that promotes the anti-inflammation in this herb. Supplemental formulas that isolate this constituent are popular, however, I take the more economical version of the plain gold colored powder that I find in the bulk section of my health food store.
After taking this powder for a 2 month duration, I felt noticeably better, especially in both of my hips where most of my pain occurred when running. Without taking this spice, I find I have to cut way back on my running and have more pain generally. Dr. Weil suggests a dosage of 400-600 mgs of either capsules or tablets, and the equivalent of that in powder form would be approximately a teaspoon.
Ginger Root
Dr. Weil and myself both feel good about the decrease in inflammation that comes with taking ginger. I make a point of taking this herb along with the turmeric either in freshly juiced vegetables or fruits. Adding these substances to your freshly made juice is a very effective and quick way to get full benefits from these anti-inflammatory herbs and is something I do almost daily. Fresh juice is absorbed within 15 minutes so you can get the anti-inflammatory benefit quickly. I find that without the use of ginger combined with the turmeric my pain doesn't seem to be as well managed. I tried to go with just one or the other, but the difference is quite noticeable. Dr. Weil (http://www.drweil.com/drw/u/QAA142972/Anti-Inflammatory-Herbs.com) recommends a dosage of 500-1,000 milligrams.
Using this herb in an extract is the best way to obtain the best results from the anti-inflammatory qualities of it. I've had clients from my retail health food store that had experienced a lot of fibromyalgia symptoms and swore by the effectiveness of this herb in decreasing the pain and inflammation from that condition. Dr. Weil, suggests two of these in capsule form twice daily.
All of these can be found in combinations at health food retail stores that work very well and are known for good results.

31-May-2012, 01:12 AM

Nuts to Diabetes & Heart Disease
In This Week's Issue

If you don't go overboard, munching on nuts daily can help lower your risks of developing metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes (http://www.drweil.com/drw/u/ART03373/Diabetes-Type-2.html) and heart disease. The latest on the health benefits of eating these traditional snack foods comes from a comparison of people who ate nuts versus those who didn't. Researchers from the Louisiana State University Agricultural Center looked at data from 13,292 adults who took part in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys between 1999 and 2004 to learn how many ate at least a quarter of an ounce of tree nuts per day (including walnuts, almonds, cashews, macadamia nuts and pistachios). They found that 18.6 percent of adults between ages 19 and 50 ate nuts daily as did 21 percent of those age 51 or older. Compared with study participants who didn't report eating nuts, those who did had fewer risk factors for metabolic syndrome, diabetes and heart disease (http://www.drweil.com/drw/u/id/QAA338074) - they weighed less, had less hypertension, higher HDL (“good”) cholesterol levels, lower C-reactive protein (a marker for inflammation), less abdominal obesity and a lower prevalence of metabolic syndrome.
My take? This is just one of the many studies suggesting the health benefits of including nuts in your diet. While high in fat, most nuts contain monounsaturated fat, the type that is good for the heart. Results from an ongoing study, which is monitoring the health of 86,000 nurses, noted several years ago that those who ate more than five ounces of nuts per week (about the amount you get by eating a single airline packet daily) had one third fewer heart attacks than those who rarely or never ate nuts. I usually enjoy a handful a day - my favorites are cashews, almonds and walnuts.

15-Jun-2012, 05:19 AM
Ramadan fasting lowers bad cholesterol, shows UAE study

Asma Ali Zain / 14 June 2012

Fasting in the holy month of Ramadan affects cholesterol levels positively while leading to changes in the body that may also impact health, according to a new study presented recently.A new medical study undertaken in the UAE by a team of cardiologists led by the chief interventional cardiologist at American Hospital Dubai, working with volunteers has shed new light on the subject by examining changes to cholesterol levels (a key indicator and risk factor for heart disease) during Ramadan. The findings of the study were presented at the recent World Cardiology Conference hosted in Dubai.


Palestinian women stand in front of a window decoration of Islam's crescent moon and star on the eve of Islam's holy fasting month of Ramadan in the West Bank city of Jenin. - AFP/Getty Images

A Muslim fasting during Ramadan must abstain from food and drink from Fajer time (just before sunset) to Maghreb (sunset) for one lunar month. These changes in the eating schedule would be expected to affect the lipid profile (the measure of cholesterol in the blood) and there have been several small studies that showed some effects of Ramadan fasting on lipid profile but there was no consistent result. The objectives of the UAE study were to examine the effects of fasting during Ramadan on the lipid profile. Dr Omar K. Hallak, Consultant Interventional Cardiologist at American Hospital, and a member of the medical team leading the UAE study, commented: “This UAE study to examine the effects of Ramadan fasting on lipid profile provides the evidence that the change in habits and eating patterns during the Holy Month have a positive effect on cholesterol despite an increase in Body Mass Index amongst the sample.
“This is especially important in a region where there is a high incidence of obesity and diabetes.”
Dr Hallak added: “Cholesterol levels should be measured at least once every five years in adults over the age of 20 and more frequently for men over 35 and women over 45.” Thirty-seven adult volunteers were recruited to the study in the UAE, all of whom were willing and fit to fast during Ramadan.
Body Mass Index (BMI), blood pressure (BP) and lipid profile (blood test to measure cholesterol) were all measured two weeks before Ramadan. The same measurements were then repeated a second time during the fourth week of Ramadan, and then a third set of measurements were taken three weeks after the end of Ramadan. There are two forms of cholesterol — LDL (‘bad’ cholesterol) and HDL (‘good’ cholesterol). The LDL can build up on the walls of the arteries and increase the chance of getting heart disease. The lower the LDL cholesterol number, the lower the risk.
The study concluded that for the UAE group, during the fasting month of Ramadan, the average LDL decreased and the average HDL increased, resulting in a significant improvement of the HDL/LDL ratio in spite of the increased BMI.

15-Jun-2012, 05:21 AM
Mind and body rest tied to concussion healing: study

(Reuters) / 9 June 2012

Among people who have suffered a concussion, taking a week off from nearly all mental and physical activity—including television, talking on the phone and visiting with friends—was linked with improved mental performance and fewer symptoms in a new study.A week of total rest, even months after the injury occurred, still had benefits, according to the report in the Journal of Pediatrics.
“That’s really important because very often we see patients with post-concussion syndrome months after” their concussion, said Rosemarie Moser, director of the Sports Concussion Center of New Jersey and lead author of the study.
Post-concussion syndrome involves headaches, mental fogginess, fatigue, and difficulty concentrating or sleeping, among other symptoms.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/rest1_0906202.jpgTypically, rest is the main treatment that clinicians offer patients, “but it’s not systematic or comprehensive,” said Moser. “Currently, it really varies as to how practitioners define cognitive and physical rest.”
That’s because there isn’t a lot of evidence showing what types of rest are most helpful, she added.
To measure how well an intensive bout of rest can help athletes heal after a concussion, Moser’s group ordered 49 high school- and college-age patients to rest for a full week.
The prescription was strict: the study participants could not go to school or work, talk on the phone, exercise, watch TV, socialize or work at a computer.
Moser said that, based on the parents’ reports, most of the athletes were pretty good about sticking to the plan.
Fourteen of the patients started the rest within a week of their injuries. Another 22 patients began resting within a month of the concussion, and 13 patients began the week of rest between one and seven months after the concussion.
At the beginning of the study, all of the patients had symptoms related to the injury, such as headaches and trouble concentrating.
After the week of rest, all groups saw their symptoms improve.
Among the athletes who started the rest within a week of their concussion, their symptoms improved from a score of 22 on a 132-point scale down to seven.
Similarly, among those who began the week of rest more than a month out from their injury, symptoms dropped by 20 points, from 28 to 8.
“All of those symptoms improved dramatically. Qualitatively, you feel better,” Moser said.
Moser’s group also had the participants take mental tests—which measured memory, processing speed and reaction time—before and after the prescribed resting period.
The patients did better on all of the mental exams after they rested.
For instance, on a test of visual memory, people who started the rest within a week of the concussion or more than a month after the concussion had 10-percent better scores after their rest period, compared to before.
Such improvements are not immediately translatable to real life situations, Moser said, but better memory and mental speed might help someone during tasks like taking notes while listening to a teacher in school or remembering what a person just read.
Moser’s group did not compare the participants’ improvement to other people with concussions who got no special rest period, or who got some rest but less than the total cognitive and body rest imposed in the study.
So, at most, the report demonstrates that the rest did little harm and might have provided a benefit.
The study “provides some evidence to back up a recommendation that’s already out there,” said Dr. Willem Meeuwisse, a professor at the University of Calgary and a physician specializing in sports injuries who was not involved in the new work.
Meeuwisse said it’s not clear whether the rest needs to be as intensive as it was in the study to deliver benefits.
He said that in typical practice, “we back off physical and cognitive activity until your symptoms improve and avoid things that provoke and make your symptoms worse. That’s ideal because then you can individualize.”

19-Jun-2012, 02:50 AM
Lifestyle changes can prevent type-2 diabetes

(IANS) / 18 June 2012

Making lifestyle changes can prevent type-2 diabetes, simply, effectively and cheaply, a new study says.Diabetes is a chronic and complex disease marked by high levels of sugar in the blood that arise due to problems with the hormone insulin, which regulates blood sugar levels. It is usually caused by an inability to produce insulin (type 1) or an inability to respond correctly to insulin (type 2).
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/jogging1_18062012.jpgThe study involved 230 people in poor, urban neighbourhoods in the San Francisco Bay Area cities. Contacted by phone about once a month, half of them received specific dietary guidance and other lifestyle counselling.
After six months, those who had received the counselling had on average lost more weight, were consuming less fat, were eating more fruits and vegetables and showed more improvements in lowering in their blood triglycerides, a key risk measure for type 2 diabetes, the American Journal of Public Health reported.
“Diabetes is not something you are necessarily going to get just because it runs in your family,” said Alka Kanaya, associate professor of medicine at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) and senior study author. “It is very preventable, and lifestyle changes can really impact the onset of diabetes.”
“You can do something about it,” said Anita Stewart, professor at the UCSF Institute for Health & Aging and the Centre for Aging in Diverse Communities, senior study co-author, according to a university statement.
A major health concern in the US, diabetes of all types affect an estimated 8.3 percent of the US population—some 25.8 million Americans—and cost US taxpayers more than $200 billion annually.
Previous studies have shown that counselling and other lifestyle interventions are effective at preventing type 2 diabetes, but those interventions have generally been designed for clinical settings and include separate sessions with numerous health professionals.

21-Jun-2012, 02:26 AM
Home (http://www.khaleejtimes.com/index00.asp) > Health (http://www.khaleejtimes.com/kt-article-list-images.asp?section=health)

Loneliness, living alone tied to shorter lifespan

(Reuters) / 19 June 2012

People with heart disease who live alone tend to die sooner than those sharing their home with others, a new study shows.http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/loneliness_19062012.jpgAlthough the reasons for the gap are still murky, lead researcher Dr. Deepak Bhatt said access to regular medicine might be involved.
"Patients living alone may have more difficulty getting their medications refilled and taking them regularly," Bhatt told Reuters Health. "They also don't have anyone at home to call the doctor's office or emergency room if they are not looking well."
Earlier research has yielded mixed conclusions, but studies have linked social isolation to everything from heart attacks to weakened immune systems.
Bhatt, of Harvard Medical School in Boston, and his colleagues focused specifically on people with known heart disease or at very high risk for it. They included more than 44,000 people, all of whom were 45 or older, from multiple countries across the globe.
Over the four years the study lasted, 7.7 percent of participants younger than 65 who lived on their own died, compared to just 5.7 percent of those who didn't live alone.
The gap was smaller for people age 66 to 80, but it remained statistically reliable even after accounting for age, sex, employment, ethnicity and country. The living situation of those over 80, however, wasn't tied to death rates.
Writing in the Archives of Internal Medicine, the researchers speculate that in people under 80, living alone could signal psychological and social problems like job strain or loneliness. In contrast, very old people who live on their own may be healthier and more independent than those who don't.
Whatever the explanation, Bhatt said cardiologists should routinely ask their patients if they live alone.
"If the answer is yes, that might be a red flag and they should make sure the patients have a way to get their medicine regularly," he said. Meanwhile, patients living solo should think twice before ignoring changes that might be a sign of health problems.
"Many times people just adapt to their circumstances," he said. "Perhaps just lower your threshold a little bit and realize it's better to call (the doctor) than not to call."
But that might not be the whole story, he acknowledged.
"Other mechanisms by which living alone could increase cardiac risk have to do with possible social isolation and loneliness, and these are more challenging to fix," Bhatt said.
Indeed, another report published along with Bhatt's shows older people who felt lonely had more difficulty performing basic tasks of daily living and died younger than those who didn't feel alone.

25-Jun-2012, 06:13 PM
Lifestyle changes key in diabetes care

Staff Reporter / 23 June 2012

Type 2 diabetes is the most common type of diabetes that occurs in adult population after 30-40 years of age, says Dr Shahid Alam, Specialist Internal Medicine, Zulekha Hospital, Dubai.Type 2 diabetes is an important contributor to premature vascular disease (like heart attack and strokes), kidney failure and lower limb amputation.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/drsahid_23062012.jpgApproximately 19.2 per cent of the UAE population has been diagnosed with diabetes. Type 2 diabetes is frequently asymptomatic and remains undiagnosed for many years. Lifestyle issues such as lack of exercise and excessive calorie intake are often responsible for the early onset of diabetes.
Primary care lays stress on delay or prevention of onset of diabetes. “We need to address the causative factors like hereditary and environmental,” Dr Alam said.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/health1_04032012.jpgA more likely approach to the prevention of type 2 diabetes could be through lifestyle changes that favourably influence insulin sensitivity and secretion capacity.
Type 2 diabetes can be prevented by avoidance of obesity, increasing physical activity, dietary modification and optimisation of the intrauterine (during pregnancy) environment.
Obesity is associated with increased risk of diabetes. Results of many prevention trials showed that regular exercise reduced the risk of developing diabetes especially for those who are overweight and have a family history of diabetes.
The quantity and composition of diet is also an important contributing factor. Stress should be laid on consumption of low fat food consisting of vegetables, cereals, whole wheat products and fruits.
Low birth weight also increases risk of future diabetes. Many studies suggest that adequate maternal nutrition and avoiding high blood sugar in mother during pregnancy have a preventive role in type 2 diabetes.
Hence, we should mainly focus on lifestyle changes like regular exercise, weight reduction and low calorie food for prevention of type 2 diabetes.
Secondary prevention deals with the management of diabetic complications by early diagnosis and adequate treatment of the disorder.
There is also need for treating and addressing associated risk factors like hypertension, high cholesterol and smoking.
Tertiary prevention means early detection, regular check-up and follow-up with health care providers.

25-Jun-2012, 06:14 PM
Hepatitis B vaccine protects for 25 years: study

(Reuters) / 21 June 2012

Vaccination against hepatitis B seems to protect against the virus for 25 years, suggesting that booster shots are unnecessary, according to a study from Taiwan that covered several thousand people.Taiwan began compulsory hepatitis B virus immunization for all infants in 1984, in response to extremely high rates of infection, and the study - which appeared in the Journal of Hepatology - suggests other countries might benefit from a similar move.
“Universal vaccination in infancy provides long-term protection,” wrote lead author Yen-Hsuan Ni, from the National Taiwan University in Taipei.
Hepatitis B is a viral infection that attacks the liver and is a prime cause of liver cancer. The virus is spread by contact with the blood or other bodily fluids of an infected person.
In 2009, participants in the study who were younger than age 25 were far less likely to be infected with Hepatitis B than those between the ages of 26 and 30, who were born before universal vaccination, the researchers found.
“Its efficacy in young adults is clear,” Ni told Reuters health, explaining that medical experts had questions about how long the vaccine’s protective effect would last. Booster shots, which are generally not recommended for Hepatitis B, were not given to subjects in the study.
For the study, which was funded by the National Taiwan University Hospital, Ni and his colleagues enrolled more than 3,300 participants under 30.
Of these, more than 2,900 - born after the mandate - received at least three doses of vaccine in their first year. Approximately 370 subject, born before 1984, were not universally vaccinated.
When they collected blood samples from January to December 2009, Ni’s team found that fewer than one percent of the universally vaccinated group carried the virus and were infectious to others, compared with 10 percent of those who weren’t universally vaccinated.
Fifty-six percent of those born after universal vaccination developed immunity to the disease, versus 24 percent in the group born before it began. Seven percent of the group that was universally vaccinated had an infection in their history but possibly had recovered, compared with 28 percent of the group that was not.
The World Health Organization recommends hepatitis B shots for all babies. The vaccine comes in a three-part series.

26-Jun-2012, 03:57 PM
nice articles...

27-Jun-2012, 02:30 AM
Less-invasive weight loss surgery safer

(Reuters) / 24 June 2012

Minimally invasive weight loss surgery is safer than open surgery, with patients suffering fewer complications during those procedures, according to a US study of more than 150,000 people who underwent gastric bypass surgery.Patients left the hospital sooner, and with a slightly smaller medical bill, after undergoing so-called laparoscopic gastric bypass procedures, in which only a few small cuts in the stomach are made, said researchers at Stanford University in California.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/healtgh_24062012.jpgDuring gastric bypass, the surgeon creates a pouch out of the top portion of the stomach, then connects it to the small intestine so fewer calories are absorbed during digestion, with one large cut being made. Laparoscopic surgery involves a small camera being inserted, and several small cuts.
“The consensus is now overwhelming to suggest a laparoscopic approach first,” said John Morton, who led the research, noting that close to 90 per cent of gastric bypass surgery patients now have it done laparoscopically.
“Pretty much across the board (it has) much better outcomes for patients.”
Morton and his colleagues analysed data on weight loss procedures done at about 1,000 US hospitals each year between 2005 and 2007, including 41,000 open gastric bypass surgeries and 115,000 laparoscopic surgeries.
Looking at safety records, the researchers found about 19 per cent of patients undergoing open surgery had at least one complication, such as developing pneumonia or needing a blood transfusion. Just over 12 per cent of those who had less-invasive surgery developed complications.
One in 500 obese patients in the open surgery group died during or shortly after the procedure, compared with one in 1,000 in the laparoscopic group, according to findings published in the Archives of Surgery.
Open surgery patients also had longer hospital stays, 3.5 days versus 2.4 days, on average.
According to data from the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery, about 220,000 people in the United States had weight loss surgery, including gastric bypass, in 2009.
“From the surgeon’s perspective, the ability to see (during) the surgery is enhanced doing it laparoscopically,” said Anita Courcoulas, a professor and bariatric surgeon from the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, who wasn’t involved in the study.
“From the patient’s perspective, there’s much less pain, so they can walk and move and return to normal activities sooner.”

27-Jun-2012, 02:48 AM
Papaya: The Fruit of Angels

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-0EkjpPB7zBs/Tf7zx4vCOtI/AAAAAAAAASg/l-oca1kZ0RA/s320/strawberry-papaya.jpg (http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-0EkjpPB7zBs/Tf7zx4vCOtI/AAAAAAAAASg/l-oca1kZ0RA/s1600/strawberry-papaya.jpg)
Christopher Columbus, who is given credit as being the first European to reach America, in 1492, called papaya the "fruit of the angels," and rightly so. Many of you may have tried and loved eating papaya's wonderful flesh, but few know that the seeds are also edible -- and delicious when used in salad dressings to spice up the flavor. The seeds have a peppery flavor that add a wonderful spank to the dressing.

The botanical name for papaya is Carica Papaya. Botanically speaking, papaya is a berry. There are two types of papaya, the Hawaiian and the Mexican varieties. The papaya fruit is sweet with musky undertones and as soft as butter. It earned the reputation for being the "fruit of the angels" because of that consistency. It is a tropical fruit, but due to refrigeration, papaya can be found all year round. The papaya is spherical in shape, almost like a pear, but can be as long as 50 cm. Papayas found in supermarkets are usually about 17 cm long. The flesh is orange in color with black round seeds in the cavity encased in a gelatin-like substance. Papain is an enzyme found in papaya that helps the body digest proteins, and it is extracted to make digestion-aiding dietary supplements. People with irritable bowl syndrome should consider eating papaya to relieve their symptoms.

The seeds are used for medicinal purposes. The seeds can be eaten with the fruit, or you can dry them and use them as you use black pepper. They look and taste like black pepper.

Most papaya fruit is used for commercial and medicinal reasons. Not many papaya fruits make it to the markets. The enzyme papain is used to tenderize meat, treat wool products to prevent shrinkage, remove stains from fine fabrics, and as an antidote for jellyfish stings and insect bites. It is also used to make toothpaste, cosmetic products, beer, and contact lens cleanser.

Papaya has been grown in tropical regions of Central America and Southern Mexico for centuries. In 1500, papaya seeds were brought to the Dominican Republic and Panama. Portuguese and Spanish sailors took the papaya seeds to subtropical countries, including the Philippines, India, and Malacca. Papaya became well distributed due to the abundance of the seeds and the fact that it can withstand cool, dry conditions for about 3 years. It grows well in tropical regions due to the heavy rainfall and fertile soil.

Papaya's health benefits are numerous, but I will just touch on the main benefits. One medium-sized papaya is only 118 calories, and is a rich source of antioxidants, such as carotenes, vitamin C, flavonoids, B vitamins, folate, and pantothenic acid. It is also a good source of vitamins E and K, as well as the minerals potassium and magnesium. Moreover, papaya is a good source of fiber, and there is evidence that it lowers cholesterol. All these nutrients promote a healthy cardiovascular system. They also help to prevent colon cancer. The fiber in papayas binds to toxins in the colon and removes them from the body before they can cause cancer.

Papaya has an antiinflammatory effect, because it contains the enzymes papain and chymopapain, which reduce inflammation and allow improved healing from burns. Even the immune system is improved by papaya, because it contains high levels of vitamins C and A. Eating a papaya every day can make a huge impact on your health.

T.P. Lucas, a British doctor, discovered the medicinal value of papaya in 1875. He opened a hospital in Brisbane, Australia, to treat patients mostly with papaya. The value of papaya in treating sunburns, rashes, and age spots has been implicated in Papua New Guinea. I can site much research evidence as to the power and benefits of eating papaya, but due to limited space, I will only mention one study which confirms that papaya and other fruits in the same category protect against rheumatoid arthritis.

A study at the University of Manchester in England, as reported by the Tufts University Health & Nutrition Letter, November 2005, Volume 23, states that there is a positive link between the intake of brightly colored fruits (such as papayas) and a lower chance of developing inflammatory polyarthritis. Papaya has high levels of beta-cryptoxanthin, an antioxidant thought to protect against inflammation. The study was originally reported in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, August 2005, volume 82, lead by Dorothy Pattison. Pattison stated that the average daily beta-cryptoxanthin intake of the 88 subjects who developed inflammatory polyarthritis was 40 percent lower than those who had not and the subject's intake of other carotenoids, zeaxanthin was 20 percent lower. The study concluded that there is evidence that modest increase in B-cryptoxanthin intake equal to a glass of juice, or a whole fruit, such as papaya, every day reduces the risk of developing inflammatory disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis.

27-Jun-2012, 03:03 AM
Know what you eat

Six foods that aren’t as bad as you think

By Katherine Tallmadge
Published: 00:00 June 9, 2012


[*=right]Image Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto
Still-life of fresh fruit

As a nutrition consultant, I’ve come to realise there is no shortage of surprises and superstitions in the world of nutrition. Here are reasons to enjoy some of your favourites.

Gluten and wheat

Decades of studies have found that gluten-containing foods, such as whole wheat, rye and barley, are not just vital for good health, they’ve shown to reduce risk of diabetes, heart disease, cancer and excess weight. Joanne Slavin, nutrition professor at the University of Minnesota, adds it’s a good source of fibre, vitamins and minerals. One reason wheat-free or gluten-free diets are popular is that people who don’t eat wheat often end up bypassing excess calories in sweets and snack foods. They lose weight and mistakenly attribute their success to gluten or wheat avoidance.

Their high cholesterol content has been thought to increase LDL (“bad”) cholesterol and heart disease risk but no studies confirm this. Cholesterol in food is a minor factor contributing to high blood cholesterol for most people. “Elevations in LDL (bad) cholesterol of this small magnitude [184mg in the yolk] could easily be countered by other healthy aspects of eggs,” says Walter Willett, professor of epidemiology and nutrition at Harvard’s School of Public Health. Interestingly, some of the biggest egg eaters in the world, the Japanese, have low cholesterol and heart disease rates, partly because they eat a diet low in saturated fat.

Potatoes have been blamed for increasing blood glucose levels, insulin resistance, excess weight and Type 2 diabetes. One Harvard study linked potato eating with being overweight, due to the blood glucose rise. But foods, including whole-wheat bread and whole-grain cereals, cause similar spikes in blood glucose. The study lumped all potato products together, including potato chips and french fries – very fattening versions eaten with hamburgers, hot dogs and sodas. “Other epidemiological studies have not verified a connection between potatoes and weight gain or any diseases, and no clinical studies have shown a connection,” said David Baer, a research leader at the Agricultural Research Service of the Department of Agriculture. Potatoes are a great source of potassium, Vitamin C and fibre.
People often ask me if fruit is too high in sugar, especially for diabetics. This fear of fruit, I believe, is from the Atkins craze, which discouraged eating some fruits because they are high in carbohydrates. Avoiding fruit could actually damage your health. Studies have shown eating fruit reduce the risk of some cancers, heart disease, blood pressure and diabetes. It is high in water and fibre, which help you feel full with fewer calories, one reason why eating it is linked to lower body weight. Even though they contain simple sugars, most fruits have a relatively low glycemic index.
Soy is sometimes seen as dangerous after studies found elevated rates of breast cancer among rats when they were fed a concentrated soy derivative. But studies looking at whole soy foods in humans have not found a connection. Soy, “when consumed in childhood or adolescence may make breast tissue less vulnerable to cancer development later in life and probably has no effect on breast cancer risk when consumption begins in adulthood,” said Karen Collins, registered dietitian and nutrition adviser with the American Institute for Cancer Research. Actually, Collins said, the evidence is so strong for protection against heart disease that the FDA allowed a health claim for labels on soy food products.
Fried Foods
While it’s true that frying food usually increases its caloric content, that doesn’t necessarily make it unhealthful. As long as food is not fried in butter, shortening, or trans fat, and is eaten in moderation, it isn’t less healthy. In fact, fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K, and heart-healthy, cancer-preventive carotenoids such as beta-carotene (carrots, sweet potatoes), lycopene (tomatoes) and lutein/zeaxanthin (deep-green leafy vegetables such as spinach and kale), need fat in order to be absorbed by the body.
— Washington Post

27-Jun-2012, 05:06 PM
Diseases spreading because people don’t wash their hands

Hygiene expert warns simple act is the best defence against passing on an infection

By Mahmood Saberi, Senior Reporter
Published: 13:31 June 27, 2012
http://gulfnews.com/polopoly_fs/gulf-news-logo-1.505033%21image/3510741613.gif_gen/derivatives/article_credit/3510741613.gif (http://gulfnews.com/)

Dubai: Every year two billion people around the world suffer from diarrhoea because they don’t wash their hands, the Global Hygiene Council has warned.
We are living in an inter-connected world where the outbreak of cholera in Haiti, for example, will soon be felt in London, according to John Oxford, chairman of the Hygiene Council and professor of Virology at Queen Mary College, University of London.
Infectious diseases are spread through person-to-person transmission primarily due to a lack of personal hygiene, Oxford said, citing the recent incidents in Germany. Even in modern, educated societies people do not wash their hands because they claim there is no time, he said.
Oxford was speaking at the recent launch of the Arab Hygiene Council in Dubai that involves health care officials from across the region. Its objective is to develop hygiene standards across the Middle East and raise awareness about the risks of poor hygiene habits.
“Poor hygiene has contributed to the global spread of pathogens such as norovirus and staphylococcus,” Oxford said.
A study has shown that globally many people still do not wash their hands before cooking their food, eating or after using the toilet. In the Middle East younger people and extroverts are aware of the dangers of dirty hands, the study shows.
Related Links

The war on germs is a rinse away (http://gulfnews.com/life-style/health/the-war-on-germs-saved-by-the-gel-1.1041099)

According to Rowena Intrepido, infection control specialist at the Canadian Specialist Hospital in Dubai, more people in the UAE have become aware that you need to keep your hands clean since the H1N1 scare.
“When soap and water are not available people rely on hand sanitisers,” Intrepido said. She said there are 400 hand sanitising gel dispensers across the hospital.
Intrepido said hospital staff are required to wash or clean their hands before contact with a patient, after patient contact, after exposure to body and body fluids and after touching the patient’s surroundings.
She said some of the dirtiest things we touch every day are the shopping trolley handles and the door knobs of toilet doors and was happy to note many stores and organisations provide hand sanitising gel dispensers.
Asked whether it was an advertising gimmick, Rowena said it may seem the role of hand sanitisers is over-hyped by manufacturers. But she noted our hands are home to thousands of disease-carrying bacteria. “It is important to maintain hand hygiene with soap and water and if you can’t get soap and water then the hand sanitiser gel will work,” she said.
According to Tareq Madani, professor of medicine and infectious diseases, there is no difference if you wash with soap and water or sanitising gel. “In a hospital setting the gel and hand wipes are better than soap and water [as it saves time],” he said.
The doctor noted that the way the hands are cleaned is also important.

27-Jun-2012, 05:32 PM
Menopause for men is real and treatable

Men over 50 like their female counterparts, are s prone to decrease of hormones

By Samihah Zaman, Staff Reporter
Published: 00:00 June 10, 2012
http://gulfnews.com/polopoly_fs/gulf-news-logo-1.505033%21image/3510741613.gif_gen/derivatives/article_credit/3510741613.gif (http://gulfnews.com/)


[*=right]Image Credit: Supplied
Testosterone levels in the human body naturally decrease as part of the aging process.

Abu Dhabi: If you think hormonal changes, hot flashes and mood swings are hallmarks of menopausal women, think again. Men over the age of 50, like women, are as prone to the gradual decrease of hormones, along with symptoms like depression, reduced muscle strength and declining cognitive function, an expert said.
These symptoms, which occur when the level of testosterone decreases in the body, are even more pronounced in men with diabetes or obesity, said Dr Manaf Al Hashimi, specialist urologist at Lifeline Hospital.

While low levels of testosterone occur in 20 per cent of men on average, according to studies conducted in the United States and Europe. However, because of the high levels of diabetes and obesity in the region, the condition may be even more prevalent here

Dr Al-Hashimi

“While low levels of testosterone occur in 20 per cent of men on average, according to studies conducted in the United States and Europe. However, because of the high levels of diabetes and obesity in the region, the condition may be even more prevalent here,’’ Dr Al-Hashimi told Gulf News.
“Unfortunately, men in the region are not aware that male menopause is a real, treatable condition. In fact, not treating greatly lowered levels of testosterone in the body also poses other risks,” he added.
Testosterone levels in the human body naturally decrease as part of the aging process. An average 70-year-old male has half the level of testosterone as a 30-year-old.
In one of five men, these levels fall below 12 nanomoles per litre of blood, bringing about the onset of male menopause, also known as andropause or male climacteric. This is when risks such as increasing body mass index, decreased sexual performance, erectile dysfunction, poorer control of diabetes, recurring depression, impaired cognitive abilities, and worsening hypertension and cholesterol levels. Male menopause is also closely linked to cardiovascular diseases, as well as lowered bone density that is indicative of osteoporosis.
Related Links

Workout-excess alert in middle age (http://gulfnews.com/life-style/health/workout-excess-alert-in-middle-age-1.578819)
Age over attitude (http://gulfnews.com/about-gulf-news/al-nisr-portfolio/friday/articles/age-over-attitude-1.144253)

“Testosterone is normally considered to be associated with sexual functions, but the hormone has many other roles in the human body. In fact, many organs, including the brain, kidney, liver and skin, require enough testosterone for proper functioning,” the doctor said.
Few patients seek treatment for male menopause, despite its prevalence. For example, only 3 per cent of those affected in Europe in 2006 were receiving treatment. “And only 3 per cent of all the patients I have seen over the last five years had any awareness of the condition,” Dr Al Hashimi said.
As in the case of female menopausal symptoms, there are many hormone replace treatments available for those with low testosterone, such as injections, gels and patches.
“Men over the age of 40 years should regularly screen themselves when visiting their physicians, especially those afflicted with diabetes or obesity. If testosterone levels are lowered, a physician can prescribe some form of treatment, and then screen the patient against any possible side effects,” he said.

03-Jul-2012, 01:01 AM
10,000 steps a day keep diabetes at bay

(Reuters) / 30 June 2012

Among people at high risk for diabetes who get very little exercise, those who manage to walk more throughout the day are less likely to actually develop the blood sugar disorder, according to a US study.Earlier studies have shown that walking more is tied to a lower risk of diabetes, but few studies have looked into precise measures of how many steps people take each day, said Amanda Fretts, lead author of the study and a researcher at the University of Washington in Seattle.
“Our finding wasn’t surprising given that other studies have shown that even light activity is associated with a lower risk of diabetes,” Fretts wrote in an email to Reuters Health.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/jogging1_18062012.jpgTo get a better sense of the potential benefits of walking, Fretts and her colleagues asked more than 1,800 people to wear a pedometer for a week to tally the number of steps they typically took each day.
All of them came from native American communities in Arizona, Oklahoma and North and South Dakota that are known to have low physical activity levels and high rates of diabetes.
About a quarter of the group were considered to have very low activity, taking fewer than 3,500 steps a day, while half took fewer than 7,800 steps a day. One mile is around 2,000 steps and daily walking recommendations typically point to a minimum of 10,000 steps a day.
At the beginning of the study, none of the participants had diabetes. But after five years of follow-up, 243 people had the condition.
About 17 per cent of the people in the lowest activity group developed diabetes, compared to 12 per cent of the people who took more than 3,500 steps a day.
After taking into account people’s age, whether they smoked and other diabetes risk factors, Fretts’s steam determined that people who walked the most were 29 per cent less likely to develop diabetes than those who walked the least.
The findings don’t prove that walking more is responsible for the lower diabetes risk, but Fretts offered some possible explanations for how walking might help.
“Increased physical activity may prevent weight gain and promote weight loss, a major determinant of diabetes risk,” she said.
Physical activity also has effects on inflammation, glucose and other molecules in the body that could help lower diabetes risk. But she added that the potential benefits of moderate levels of walking are “only for those who are really inactive to begin with.” — Reuters

03-Jul-2012, 01:12 AM
Carpal tunnel syndrome: Is it worth the wait?

/ 27 June 2012

Delaying treatment for minor health issues — like carpal tunnel syndrome — could cost more in the long run.Delaying treatment for minor health issues — like carpal tunnel syndrome — could cost more in the long run.
families go through a check and balance process when it comes to their health. They try to determine if avoiding the cost of medical bills as well as time off from work is worth the risk of delaying medical treatment for a problem — especially when they question how serious the problem is for their long-term health.
Many health experts agree that delaying needed and recommended treatments will end up costing individuals and the country far more in the long run. Some relatively minor problems, including high blood pressure, hearing loss, joint pain and carpal tunnel syndrome tend to escalate if left untreated, putting a patient at risk for more serious (and expensive) health consequences.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/health_27062012.jpgCarpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) is a good example of an ailment you might think you can live with rather than pay the cost of treating it. It’s surprisingly common, with up to five per cent of the workforce affected, according to the Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery journal. On average, affected workers lost 27 days of work to recuperate from CTS in 2010, according to the Bureau of Labour Statistics.
With people spending more time on their computer or online, more people are likely to be exposed to the repetitive motions that can lead to CTS.
While severe cases may require surgical treatment, studies have shown that early treatment with splinting and massage can help alleviate this painful condition. Appropriate splinting (or bracing) helps keep the affected wrist in a neutral position, minimising pressure on the irritated nerve, according to the Mayo Clinic.
Massage can also be effective, researchers have found. A report in the Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies indicates massage can reduce CTS symptoms. While only your doctor can make an actual diagnosis, once you know you have carpal tunnel syndrome there are simple, low-cost steps you can take to supplement your own treatment, including:

Adjust your posture to minimise strain. Sit up straight and don’t rest your wrists on the edge of your keyboard tray while typing; try to maintain a straight wrist position.
Stay hydrated. Proper hydration is essential to the healthy functioning of all our tissues.
Ask your doctor to recommend appropriate exercises to keep the wrist flexible.
Wear a wrist brace, even when you sleep. A special night brace is best.

It makes sense to save yourself long-term pain and money by addressing the problem early. Consult your doctor if you experience wrist pain that might be carpal tunnel syndrome.

10-Jul-2012, 12:48 PM
Cranberry products may prevent urinary tract infections

(Reuters) / 10 July 2012

People who regularly drink cranberry juice or take cranberry capsules are less likely to get urinary tract infections, a new review of past evidence suggests. Researchers found cranberry products seemed especially helpful for women who had trouble with recurrent UTIs.

Although cranberry juice and capsules are popular antidotes to the common bacterial infections, researchers haven’t always been sure whether or how they might work. Recent evidence suggests certain compounds in cranberries - and maybe other berries as well - might prevent bacteria from attaching to tissue in the urinary tract, thereby warding off infections.

“What this is doing is solidifying what has been folklore for quite some time,” said Dr. Deborah Wing, who has studied urinary tract infections at the University of California, Irvine.

“Finally, the science is catching up to what our mothers have been telling us for so many decades,” she told Reuters Health.

Still, Wing noted some women have trouble drinking a lot of cranberry juice or don’t like swallowing the large capsules. There’s also a lack of data about what form of cranberries - juice versus capsules, for example - is easier to take and better for reducing UTI risk, said Wing, who wasn’t involved in the study.

For the new analysis, researchers led by Dr. Chih-Hung Wang from National Taiwan University Hospital consulted 10 earlier studies of about 1,500 people, mostly women, who were randomly assigned to take daily cranberry products, cranberry-free placebo products or nothing.

The amount of cranberry compounds used in the studies varied greatly, from one-gram capsules to close to 200 grams of cranberry juice daily. Overall, participants assigned to cranberry products had 38 percent fewer UTIs, the research team reported Monday in the Archives of Internal Medicine.

For women with a history of multiple infections, in particular, the risk of UTI was reduced by 47 percent while on cranberry products. For example, in one study of Canadian women with recurrent infections, there were 19 UTIs among 100 women taking both cranberry capsules and juice over a year, compared to 16 infections in 50 women who were assigned to cranberry-free imitation juice.

Because of differences between the trials and questions of how well participants and doctors were “blinded” to who was getting what product, Wang and colleagues said the findings “should be interpreted with great caution.”

“Is (cranberry) the natural cure-all for urinary tract infections? Of course not,” said Bill Gurley, a pharmaceutical researcher who has studied dietary interventions at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in Little Rock.

“For individuals that do have problems with recurrent UTIs, incorporating a little cranberry juice in your diet certainly can’t hurt,” added Gurley, who wasn’t part of the new research team. Still, he told Reuters Health, “We still don’t know exactly what the correct dose should be, or what the correct form should be.”

Wing said certain women are predisposed to UTIs. Those who are born with a malformed urinary tract or engage in anal sex, for example, are also at higher risk of recurrent infections.

Cranberry juices and capsules are an attractive option for preventing UTIs because unlike with antibiotics, taking the products for long periods of time doesn’t increase the risk that drugs used to treat infections will stop working when bacteria build up resistance.

Cranberry tablets are also relatively cheap, starting at about 25 cents per day. However, one recent study found antibiotics were still more effective at preventing infections in Dutch women with recurrent UTIs (see Reuters Health story of June 25, 2011).

High doses of cranberry products can also cause stomach aches - and the sugar in juice might be a problem for people with diabetes, the researchers noted.
Until the science catches up, Wing said, for women who want to try cranberry products the decision of juice versus capsules “is a matter of personal preference” - as long as they look carefully at product labels and know that not all over-the-counter juices and capsules are created equal.


11-Jul-2012, 01:09 AM
High-dose vitamin D prevents fractures in elderly

(Reuters) / 6 July 2012

A new analysis of nearly a dozen studies testing vitamin D in older individuals has concluded that it takes a daily dose of at least 800 international units (IU) to consistently prevent broken bones.A dose that high was found to reduce the risk of hip fracture by 30 percent and other breaks by 14 percent. Lower doses didn’t have any effect.
The report, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, also suggests that too much calcium—perhaps more than 1,000 milligrams (mg) per day—can weaken the benefit.
“These hip fractures cost a lot and are a really serious event. They are usually the end of independent life for a senior person; 50 percent do not regain their mobility. Reducing the risk by 30 percent with just a vitamin supplement would be an enormous public health opportunity,” study researcher Dr. Heike Bischoff-Ferrari of University Hospital Zurich in Switzerland told Reuters Health.
The Institute of Medicine recommends that most adults get 1,000 to 1,200 mg of calcium per day and 600 to 800 IU of vitamin D. It sets a recommended upper limit at 2,000 mg of calcium and 4,000 IU of vitamin D.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/vitd_06052012.jpgBischoff-Ferrari said the lack of benefit seen in other studies “may be explained by adherence to treatment and vitamin D supplements taken outside the study medication.”
Dr. Richard Bockman, a hormone expert at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York, said the findings are an important counterbalance to last month’s widely-reported recommendation by the US Preventive Services Task Force.
The government-backed task force advised against taking doses of less than 400 IU of vitamin D with 1,000 mg of calcium and concluded the evidence was unclear for higher doses. It also said the supplements carry a risk of side effects such as kidney stones.
Bockman said the best trial is a 2003 study, known as the Trivedi trial, in which volunteers received an average of 800 IU per day as a single 100,000 IU dose every four months.
“It clearly showed a reduction in fracture risk in people who were getting vitamin D,” he said.
In an editorial, Dr. Robert Heaney of Creighton University Medical Center in Omaha, Nebraska, said the problem with the conflicting studies may be that most have failed to consider each person’s vitamin D levels to start with.
Giving it to people who already have enough, or not giving enough to people with very low levels, may show no benefit, he said.
“In this regard, as in several other respects, nutrients are unlike drugs. Once an adequate concentration has been achieved, additional intake has no effect,” said Heaney.

11-Jul-2012, 01:19 AM
Vegetables, Fruits, and Cardiovascular Disease

http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/images/Fruit_vegetables_big.jpg There is compelling evidence that a diet rich in fruits and vegetables can lower the risk of heart disease and stroke.
The largest and longest study to date, done as part of the Harvard-based Nurses' Health Study and Health Professionals Follow-up Study, included almost 110,000 men and women whose health and dietary habits were followed for 14 years. The higher the average daily intake of fruits and vegetables, the lower the chances of developing cardiovascular disease. Compared with those in the lowest category of fruit and vegetable intake (less than 1.5 servings a day), those who averaged 8 or more servings a day were 30 percent less likely to have had a heart attack or stroke. (2 (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/what-should-you-eat/vegetables-full-story/index.html#2)) Although all fruits and vegetables likely contribute to this benefit, green leafy vegetables such as lettuce, spinach, Swiss chard, and mustard greens; cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, bok choy, and kale; and citrus fruits such as oranges, lemons, limes, and grapefruit (and their juices) make important contributions. (2 (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/what-should-you-eat/vegetables-full-story/index.html#2))
When researchers combined findings from the Harvard studies with several other long-term studies in the U.S. and Europe, and looked at coronary heart disease and stroke separately, they found a similar protective effect: Individuals who ate more than 5 servings of fruits and vegetables per had roughly a 20 percent lower risk of coronary heart disease (3 (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/what-should-you-eat/vegetables-full-story/index.html#3)) and stroke, (4 (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/what-should-you-eat/vegetables-full-story/index.html#4)) compared with individuals who ate less than 3 servings per day.
Vegetables, Fruits, and Blood Pressure

High Blood Pressure and Salt
Nine out of 10 U.S. men and women will develop hypertension at some point in their lives. Read more about ways to lower blood pressure by reducing salt and sodium.
Lower Salt and Sodium— A Key to Good Health (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/salt/lower-sodium-and-salt/index.html): An in-depth article about the health hazards of too much salt, and how we can reduce salt and sodium intake
Salt and Heart Disease (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/salt/salt-and-heart-disease/index.html): A closer look at three key studies that show the harmful effects of sodium on the heart
Delicious Recipes that Spare the Salt (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/salt/recipes/index.html): Fourteen lower-sodium recipes from The Culinary Institute of America that use herbs, spices, and culinary techniques to boost flavor

http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/images/Vegetables_fork.jpg High blood pressure is a primary risk factor for heart disease and stroke. As such, it's a condition that is important to control. Diet can be a very effective tool for lowering blood pressure. One of the most convincing associations between diet and blood pressure was found in the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) study (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/salt/salt-and-heart-disease/). (5 (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/what-should-you-eat/vegetables-full-story/index.html#5))
This trial examined the effect on blood pressure of a diet that was rich in fruits, vegetables, and low-fat dairy products and that restricted the amount of saturated and total fat. The researchers found that people with high blood pressure who followed this diet reduced their systolic blood pressure (the upper number of a blood pressure reading) by about 11 mm Hg and their diastolic blood pressure (the lower number) by almost 6 mm Hg—as much as medications can achieve.
More recently, a randomized trial known as the Optimal Macronutrient Intake Trial for Heart Health (OmniHeart) showed that this fruit and vegetable-rich diet lowered blood pressure even more when some of the carbohydrate was replaced with healthy unsaturated fat or protein. (6 (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/what-should-you-eat/vegetables-full-story/index.html#6))
Vegetables, Fruits, and Cancer

Numerous early studies revealed what appeared to be a strong link between eating fruits and vegetables and protection against cancer. But because many of these were case-control studies, where people who already have a certain health outcome (cases) are compared to people who do not have that outcome (controls), it is possible that the results may have been skewed by problems inherent in these types of studies; people with illnesses, for example, often recall past behaviors differently from those without illness, which can lead to potential inaccuracy in the information that they provide to study investigators.
Cohort studies, which follow large groups of initially healthy individuals for years, generally provide more reliable information than case-control studies because they don't rely on information from the past. And data from cohort studies have not consistently shown that a diet rich in fruits and vegetables prevents cancer in general. For example, in the Nurses' Health Study and the Health Professionals Follow-up Study, over a 14-year period, men and women with the highest intake of fruits and vegetables (8+ servings a day) were just as likely to have developed cancer as those who ate the fewest daily servings (under 1.5). (2 (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/what-should-you-eat/vegetables-full-story/index.html#2))
A more likely possibility is that some types of fruits and vegetables may protect against certain cancers. A massive report by the World Cancer Research Fund and the American Institute for Cancer Research suggests that non-starchy vegetables—such as lettuce and other leafy greens, broccoli, bok choy, cabbage, as well as garlic, onions, and the like—and fruits "probably" protect against several types of cancers, including those of the mouth, throat, voice box, esophagus, and stomach; fruit probably also protects against lung cancer. (7 (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/what-should-you-eat/vegetables-full-story/index.html#7))
http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/images/tomatos.jpg Specific components of fruits and vegetables may also be protective against cancer. For example, a line of research stemming from a finding from the Health Professionals Follow-up Study suggests that tomatoes may help protect men against prostate cancer, especially aggressive forms of it. (8 (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/what-should-you-eat/vegetables-full-story/index.html#8)) One of the pigments that give tomatoes their red hue—lycopene—could be involved in this protective effect. Although several studies other than the Health Professionals study have also demonstrated a link between tomatoes or lycopene and prostate cancer, others have not or have found only a weak connection. (9 (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/what-should-you-eat/vegetables-full-story/index.html#9)) Taken as a whole, however, these studies suggest that increased consumption of tomato-based products (especially cooked tomato products) and other lycopene-containing foods may reduce the occurrence of prostate cancer. (7 (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/what-should-you-eat/vegetables-full-story/index.html#7)) Lycopene is one of several carotenoids (compounds that the body can turn into vitamin A) found in brightly colored fruits and vegetables, and research suggests that foods containing carotenoids may protect against lung, mouth, and throat cancer. (7 (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/what-should-you-eat/vegetables-full-story/index.html#7)) But more research is needed before we know the exact relationship between fruits and vegetables, carotenoids, and cancer.
Vegetables, Fruits, and Gastrointestinal Health

One of the wonderful components of fruits and vegetables is their indigestible fiber. As fiber passes through the digestive system, it sops up water like a sponge and expands. This can calm the irritable bowel and, by triggering regular bowel movements, can relieve or prevent constipation. (10 (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/what-should-you-eat/vegetables-full-story/index.html#10)) The bulking and softening action of insoluble fiber also decreases pressure inside the intestinal tract and so may help prevent diverticulosis (the development of tiny, easily irritated pouches inside the colon) and diverticulitis (the often painful inflammation of these pouches). (11 (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/what-should-you-eat/vegetables-full-story/index.html#11))
Vegetables, Fruits, and Vision

http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/images/Fruits.jpg Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables also keeps your eyes in good shape. You may have learned that the vitamin A in carrots aids night vision. Other fruits and vegetables help prevent two common aging-related eye diseases—cataract and macular degeneration—which afflict millions of Americans over age 65. Cataract is the gradual clouding of the eye's lens, a disk of protein that focuses light on the light-sensitive retina. Macular degeneration is caused by cumulative damage to the macula, the center of the retina. It starts as a blurred spot in the center of what you see. As the degeneration spreads, vision shrinks.
Free radicals generated by sunlight, cigarette smoke, air pollution, infection, and metabolism cause much of this damage. Dark green leafy vegetables—such as spinach and kale—contain two pigments, lutein and zeaxanthin, that accumulate in the eye; these pigments are found in other brightly colored fruits and vegetables as well, including corn, squash, kiwi, and grapes. (12 (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/what-should-you-eat/vegetables-full-story/index.html#12)) These two pigments appear to be able to snuff out free radicals before they can harm the eye's sensitive tissues. (13 (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/what-should-you-eat/vegetables-full-story/index.html#13))
In general, a diet rich in fruits and vegetables appears to reduce the chances of developing cataract or macular degeneration. (14–17 (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/what-should-you-eat/vegetables-full-story/index.html#14)) Lutein and zeaxanthin, in particular, seem protective against cataract. (18 (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/what-should-you-eat/vegetables-full-story/index.html#18))
The Bottom Line: Recommendations for Vegetable and Fruit Intake

Vegetables and fruits are clearly an important part of a good diet. Almost everyone can benefit from eating more of them, but variety is as important as quantity. No single fruit or vegetable provides all of the nutrients you need to be healthy. The key lies in the variety of different vegetables and fruits that you eat.
Get your leafy greens today—try Mollie Katzen's delicious spring recipe for ruby chard. (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/recipes/ruby-chard/index.html)

Try these tips to fit more fruits and vegetables into your day:

Keep fruit out where you can see it. That way you'll be more likely to eat it. Keep it out on the counter or in the front of the fridge.
Get some every meal, every day. Try filling half your plate with vegetables or fruit at each meal. Serving up salads, stir fry, or other fruit and vegetable-rich fare makes it easier to reach this goal. Bonus points if you can get some fruits and vegetables at snack time, too.
Explore the produce aisle and choose something new. Variety is the key to a healthy diet. Get out of a rut and try some new fruits and vegetables—include dark green leafy vegetables; yellow, orange, and red fruits and vegetables; cooked tomatoes; and citrus fruits.
Bag the potatoes. Choose other vegetables that are packed with more nutrients and more slowly digested carbs.


16-Jul-2012, 09:42 PM
New evidence about calcium pills and heart attacks

Dr. Toni Brayer

Published 06:49 p.m., Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Doctors and health professionals have told women for years that they should supplement their diets with extra calcium to prevent bone loss (osteoporosis) and fractures, and many women have taken their advice. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (http://www.sfgate.com/?controllerName=search&action=search&channel=health&search=1&inlineLink=1&query=%22Centers+for+Disease+Control+and+Preventio n%22) says 61 percent of women over age 60 take calcium supplements regularly.

Now these same patients have been thrown for a loop by a study in the journal Heart that linked calcium supplements to heart attacks.
Researchers studied 24,000 German and European patients ages 35-64 that participated in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition study. Using questionnaires, they quizzed them about their vitamin and mineral supplements. They also tracked their health for 11 years, looking at heart attacks, strokes and death.
Here is what the researchers found:
-- Participants who took calcium and other supplements regularly were 86 percent more likely to experience a heart attack than those who did not take any supplements.
-- Individuals who used calcium supplements as the only supplement were more than twice as likely to have a heart attack as those who did not take calcium.
-- The authors found no evidence that any amount of calcium helped protect against, nor did it increase the risk of, stroke.
Calcium is an important ion that has many effects on the heart and vascular system. It affects electrical conduction and contractility of the heart muscle but it can also contribute to calcification of the blood vessels, which is a precursor for heart attack.
What should we make of this study? Dietary calcium is a good thing and calcium from food actually lowers the risk of heart attack. So eating foods with calcium is just fine. But we have relied too much on supplements that are increasingly being found to be of minimal value in preventing disease and even harmful when taken in large doses. Because supplements are considered "natural" and harmless, we forget that they can have powerful effects on the body that are not fully understood until we have studies such as these.
None of these studies is perfect and when we analyze them we must ask if there could be other factors that led to the results. The researchers in this study took into account age, diet, alcohol and cigarette use as well as physical activity and body mass index while they were analyzing the data. They did not specify the brands of supplements.
The average person should not take calcium supplements. Calcium taken in supplement form can cause the blood levels to rise too fast and be harmful compared to food containing calcium that is digested over time. High levels of calcium can increase the risk of kidney stones, cause gastrointestinal problems and, as it turns out, even heart attacks.
It is now becoming clear that recommending certain vitamin supplements can be harmful and they do not replace good, balanced diets. The foods with calcium include low-fat dairy, yogurt, cheese, collards, spinach, potatoes, soybeans, broccoli, Chinese cabbage, kale and turnips. Some grains are fortified with calcium.
The bottom line is calcium in the diet is fine and it's important to get enough. Authorities recommend about 1,100 milligrams a day and a little more for the elderly. Taking routine calcium from pills is not a good idea unless it is prescribed for a specific medical condition.
Dr. Toni Brayer has practiced internal medicine at California Pacific Medical Center (http://www.sfgate.com/?controllerName=search&action=search&channel=health&search=1&inlineLink=1&query=%22California+Pacific+Medical+Center%22) in San Francisco for 25 years. She is currently the chief medical officer for Sutter Health West Bay Region.

18-Jul-2012, 01:42 AM
http://www.loadpictures.net/pics/4d7143f7452a2177d5d2d559d5e4b5f9.jpg (http://www.loadpictures.net/#4d7143f7452a2177d5d2d559d5e4b5f9.jpg)

18-Jul-2012, 01:52 AM
kia aik inch cubic hi ya aik inch squire aur chilkey ke saath khain ya chilka uttar karr agar length aik inch ho to width kinti ho aur thickens kitney ho ?????????????????????????????????????????????????? ?????????????????????????????????????????????????? ????????????????????

18-Jul-2012, 01:53 AM
gala kharab se kya murad hai, khansi oor some thing else, plz explain.

18-Jul-2012, 02:33 AM
gala kharab se kya murad hai, khansi oor some thing else, plz explain.jaisey fazloo diesel ka gla kharab hai aur woh sirff kharab batain hi karta hai

18-Jul-2012, 02:46 AM
gala kharab se kya murad hai, khansi oor some thing else, plz explain.

jis tarah niyyat kharab ho tou amal acha nahi hota isi tarah gala kharab ho tou sound acha nahi hota..............dosroon ke liye...(bigsmile)(bigsmile)

18-Jul-2012, 02:48 AM
kia aik inch cubic hi ya aik inch squire aur chilkey ke saath khain ya chilka uttar karr agar length aik inch ho to width kinti ho aur thickens kitney ho ?????????????????????????????????????????????????? ?????????????????????????????????????????????????? ????????????????????

bhai bandar kia jaane adrak ka sawad..............................(bigsmile)(bigs mile)(bigsmile) ye tou aap ne suna hoga..............bus ab ache bachay ban kar 1 sq inch ka tukra jaldi jaldi chaban start kar dain......................warna phir...........bandar wali baat hogi..............:P(bigsmile)

18-Jul-2012, 03:00 AM
Allah bless all of you thanks you very much

18-Jul-2012, 03:23 AM
bhai bandar kia jaane adrak ka sawad..............................(bigsmile)(bigs mile)(bigsmile) ye tou aap ne suna hoga..............bus ab ache bachay ban kar 1 sq inch ka tukra jaldi jaldi chaban start kar dain......................warna phir...........bandar wali baat hogi..............:P(bigsmile)

:lol::lol::lol::lol::lol::lol::lol::lol::lol::lol: :lol:acha hai barey bhai

22-Jul-2012, 03:24 AM
Eat wisely after fasting, advises doctor

Asma Ali Zain / 20 July 2012

With the start of Ramadan, changes in eating habits and daily routine affect different people in different ways.Doctors are advising special care to people with chronic diseases and as well as asking them to eat healthily during the entire month.

Dr Liza Thomas, Specialist, Internal Medicine at Canadian Specialist Hospital, has said that while fasting, only one third of the stomach should be filled with food while leaving one third for fluids. “Fluids can help good digestion. Eating a lot at once may lead to distention and indigestion,” she said.

To remain healthy during Ramadan, normal quantities of food from the major food groups — bread and cereal; milk and dairy products; fish, meat and poultry; beans and vegetables; and fruits — should be consumed. Fruits such as bananas are a good source of potassium, magnesium and carbohydrates.
In view of the long hours of fasting, we should consume the so-called ‘complex carbohydrates’ or slow digesting foods at Sahur so that the food lasts longer (about eight hours) making you less hungry during the day. “These complex carbohydrates are found in foods that contain grains and seeds like barley, wheat, oats, millet, semolina, beans, lentils and wholemeal flour,” she added.
Dates are fat-free, cholesterol-free and are a good source of fibre, a key element to look out for during Ramadan. Dates also help in digestion, assimilate carbohydrates more easily and control blood sugar levels and fatty acids content in our bodies.
“It is also very important to drink plenty of water during Sahur and after Iftar,” said Dr Liza. Intake of large amounts of caffeine-containing beverages should be avoided especially at Sahur. Fried foods, very spicy foods and foods containing too much sugar such as sweets can cause health problems and should be limited during Ramadan. They cause indigestion, heartburn, and weight problems.
Avoid the following

Fried and fatty foods
Extra spicy foods and canned/tinned sauces
Foods containing too much sugar and refined carbohydrates.
Overeating at Sahur and Iftar.
Caffeine-containing drinks like tea, coffee, colas, etc.

Good time to 
quit smoking
Ramadan is a chance for smokers to quit. A few days or a few weeks before the start of Ramadan, smokers should develop a willingness to take advantage of this month and quit the habit of smoking. Smokers are able to stop themselves during the day. However, they should try and control the urge even after breaking the fast.
“If not, this will become a habit again to smoke after breaking the fast and smokers will get used to it,” said Dr Liza Thomas, Specialist, Internal Medicine at Canadian Specialist Hospital. Finding an environment that keeps them away from smoking can also help.
Chronically ill must seek medical advice
Fasting itself may have a physiological impact on diseases affecting the cardiovascular, renal and gastrointestinal systems, such as hypertension, renal impairment and peptic ulcers.
“Although fasting is possible in many of these circumstances, it may not be well tolerated physiologically, particularly in older patients, and these may be the very patients who are most adamant that they wish to fast,” said said Dr Liza Thomas, Specialist, Internal Medicine at Canadian Specialist Hospital.
“A few months before Ramadan, you should undergo a pre-Ramadan medical assessment and consultancy with your healthcare team,” she added. People who have their diabetes under control using tablets should ensure that they visit their GP prior to Ramadan and discuss any possible changes to their drug regime which would facilitate safe fasting. Regular self-monitoring of your blood glucose is strongly advised. Low blood sugar levels are dangerous and if untreated may lead to fainting or fits, and hence must be strictly avoided. Feeling dizzy, sweaty and disorientated may all suggest a ‘hypo’ (hypoglycaemia). If this is suspected, you should immediately have a sugary drink, or place sugar or a sugar-rich sweet below the tongue.
Long-acting tablets increase the risk of having hypoglycaemia, and should be changed to a shorter-acting variety before you embark on a fast, she advised. Diabetics with further complications, such as angina or heart failure, stroke, retinopathy (eye disease), nephropathy (kidney disease) or neuropathy (nerve disease of feet/hands with numbness/loss of feeling) should seek careful advice from their doctor before starting a fast.

22-Jul-2012, 03:29 AM
10 Health Benefits of Ginger http://www.healthdiaries.com/eatthis/ginger-sm.jpgGinger has been used as a natural remedy for many ailments for centuries. Now, science is catching up and researchers around the world are finding that ginger works wonders in the treatment of everything from cancer to migraines. Here are ten health benefits of this powerful herb.

Ovarian Cancer Treatment
Ginger may be powerful weapon in the treatment of ovarian cancer. A study conducted at the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center found that ginger powder induces cell death in all ovarian cancer cells to which it was applied.
Colon Cancer Prevention
A study at the University of Minnesota found that ginger may slow the growth of colorectal cancer cells.
Morning Sickness
A review of several studies has concluded that ginger is just as effective as vitamin B6 in the treatment of morning sickness.
Motion Sickness Remedy
Ginger has been shown to be an effective remedy for the nausea associated with motion sickness.
Reduces Pain and Inflammation
One study showed that ginger has anti-inflammatory properties and is a powerful natural painkiller.
Heartburn Relief
Ginger has long been used as a natural heartburn remedy. It is most often taken in the form of tea for this purpose.

Cold and Flu Prevention and Treatment Ginger has long been used as a natural treatment for colds and the flu. Many people also find ginger to be helpful in the case of stomach flus or food poisoning, which is not surprising given the positive effects ginger has upon the digestive tract. Migraine Relief
Research has shown that ginger may provide migraine relief due to its ability to stop prostaglandins from causing pain and inflammation in blood vessels.
Menstrual Cramp Relief
In Chinese medicine, ginger tea with brown sugar is used in the treatment of menstrual cramps.
Prevention of Diabetic Nephropathy
A study done on diabetic rats found that those rats given ginger had a reduced incidence of diabetic nephropathy (kidney damage).

22-Jul-2012, 03:56 AM
Foods mentioned in the Qur’an- The amazing ginger!

http://xeniagreekmuslimah.files.wordpress.com/2010/03/1-ginger.jpg?w=640 (http://xeniagreekmuslimah.files.wordpress.com/2010/03/1-ginger.jpg)
Author: Unknown
And they shall be made to drink therein a cup the admixture of which shall be ginger,
http://mail.yimg.com/a/i/mesg/tsmileys2/40.gifQuran 76:17http://mail.yimg.com/a/i/mesg/tsmileys2/40.gif
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Ginger has been used for its health benefits for over 5000 years and is a favorite medicinal as well as culinary herb.
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Unlike most spices, the part that has the most medicinal value grows under ground. Often mistakenly called “ginger root” this is actually the rhizome of the plant which is more of a subterranean stem than a root. Although you can use dried ginger and powdered ginger for health benefits, fresh ginger is preferred.
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The intake of ginger helps stimulate the secretion of mucus, quieting your cough and soothing any scratchiness in your throat.
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Ginger has been proven (in multiple studies) to treat feelings of nausea, particularly in the form of seasickness, morning sickness, motion sickness and as a side effect of chemotherapy.

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Ginger has been proven (in multiple studies) to treat feelings of nausea, particularly in the form of seasickness, morning sickness, motion sickness and as a side effect of chemotherapy.

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Ginger contains anti viral, anti toxic, and anti fungal properties, and is used for the prevention of and treatment against the common cold.

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Ginger acts as an antihistamine and aids in the treatment of allergies.

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Ginger displays anti inflammatory properties and can be used to treat rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, and various other muscular disorders.

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The chemical components of the root are instrumental in inhibiting the biosynthesis of prostaglandins which are responsible for causing inflammation.

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Thus the root has proven to be a highly effective form of treatment, in some cases, even more so than the NSAID’s that are traditionally prescribed.

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So eating ginger may help to prevent cancer and ageing disorders.

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Ginger contains special enzymes responsible for catalyzing the proteins in your food, thus aiding in digestion and the prevention of cramps.

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Good for those with constipation!

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The ancient Greeks used to eat ginger after a large meal,
in order to ease the digestion process.

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Ginger has proven to help lower your cholesterol
levels and prevent the formation of blood clots.

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As a mood enhancer, ginger’s cineole content

may help contribute to stress relief.

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Also used for migraine headache.

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Ginger can also be used for reducing toothache and the discomfort which arises due to the infection in the upper respiratory tract due to its antibacterial and antifungal nature.

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Chewing on fresh ginger,,can help freshen the breath.

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Being a warming herb, ginger can help knock out a fever. This property also makes

it effective in stimulating circulation of the blood.
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It can also help relax muscles around the blood vessels and is said to help prevent blood clots from forming. The warming effects make it a natural decongestant as well as an antihistamine, making it the perfect remedy for colds.

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Some studies show that it can even help inhibit
the replication of the herpes simplex virus.

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Recent studies show that ginger might also have a role in lowering LDL cholesterol because the spice can help reduce the amount of cholesterol that is absorbed.

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It has also been shown in animal trials to help slow
or even prevent cancerous tumor growth.

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To discover the health benefits of ginger for yourself, simply make a tea by steeping about 5 slices

of ginger in hot water.
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If you prefer it in your food,

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Ginger is excellent in many dishes and
is perfect when combined with garlic.
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Ginger doesn’t only spice up your food it can also help to put some extra spice in your intimate life too.

It improves blood flow to your sexual organs, and contains Vitamin
C, zinc and magnesium
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22-Jul-2012, 04:49 PM
Almonds a healthy snack substitute for dieters

(Reuters) / 22 July 2012

Substituting almonds for less healthy foods could help dieters stick to a calorie-controlled diet, and lower their cholesterol at the same time, says a new study.“Nuts, and in this case almonds, shouldn’t be on the ‘do not eat’ list, they can be effectively incorporated in a weight loss plan, with the caveat that they have to be portion controlled,” said Dr. Gary Foster, who led the study at Temple University in Philadelphia.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/alomunds_2207212.jpgThe new study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition and supported by the Almond Board of California, involved 123 generally healthy but obese people who followed a calorie-controlled diet for 18 months. Women ate 1,200-1,500 calories per day, while men ate 1,500-1,800.
Half the people, assigned at random by researchers, were given two 28-gram packages of almonds (about 24 almonds per package) to eat each day. That works out to about 350 calories’ worth. The other half agreed to avoid nuts altogether.
When researchers checked in with dieters after six months, they found that the nut-free dieters had lost slightly more weight than the almond eaters: 16 pounds compared to 12 pounds, on average. A year later, both groups had gained some of their weight back, and there was no longer a clear difference in total weight loss between participants who did and didn’t eat almonds.
Past research also suggests that nuts like almonds might play a role in reducing risk factors for heart disease, so Foster and his team expected to see some improvement in cholesterol and levels of blood fats known as triglycerides among the almond-eating dieters.
Six months into the study, cholesterol in the almond group had fallen 8.7 milligrams (mg) per deciliter (dL), on average, compared to 0.1 mg/dL in the nut-free group - keeping both groups under the 200 mg/dL limit for total cholesterol recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. After 18 months, cholesterol levels had risen in both groups but were still lower, on average, in the almond group - although the difference could have been due to chance.
“This shows you can include almonds in the context of a weight control program, lose a significant amount of weight and get nice additional benefits in terms of cholesterol and triglycerides,” said Foster.
Still, he urges caution. “Almonds don’t make you lose weight; they’re not free calories,” he said.
‘Good Quality Fats’ It can be difficult for dieters to stay on track for as long as 18 months, and healthy people have fewer incentives to lose weight than those with health problems, said Dr. Michelle Wien, a nutrition researcher at Loma Linda University in California, who wasn’t involved in the study.
In their report, researchers point to a lack of difference in blood fats at the end of the study as evidence that participants stopped following the diet over time. That’s normal in any type of weight loss program, said Wien.
Snacks like nuts - promoted as a healthy source of nutrients by the U.S. Department of Agriculture - are generally considered off-limits to dieters because of their high fat content. Almonds are particularly rich in magnesium, potassium and vitamin E, as well as being a good source of fiber and calcium, according to the study’s funder, the Almond Board of California.
When dieters are limiting how many calories they eat, it’s important they eat foods that are nutrient dense, with a nice level of vitamins and minerals, and good quality fats, said Wien.
It’s a comfort for people who are struggling with weight management, said Wien. They often crave something crunchy, something palatable with a nice texture, she added.
Foster agreed. If people can eat foods they enjoy when they’re dieting, they are more likely to stick to their weight loss plan, and keep the weight off, said Foster.
The message to dieters is not ‘eat all the almonds you want and you’ll lose weight,’ but you can effectively incorporate almonds as part of a weight controlled diet,” said Foster.

23-Jul-2012, 08:50 PM
Shisha Smoking Effects on Health
June 28, 2012 by SJ (http://www.urdumania.com/author/Saaju) ·

Shisha smoking is getting very common among the young generation of our society. The trend of cigarette is followed the trend of Shisha smoking. According to the report of world health organization (W H O), there are approximately 20 – 25 million people those are addicted to different forms of additions like drugs and smoking. Out of those 25 million people, 36% are boys and 9 % are girls. The report mentioned that tobacco causes different diseases in almost 60, 000 people and most of them died because of worse affect of tobacco. Shisha smoking is very injurious to the health and Shisha smoking of one hour is equivalent to the 60 cigarettes because it has carbon monoxide.
Click Here to Continue Reading in English (http://www.urdumania.com/urdu-topics/health/shisha-smoking-effects-on-health.php#full)
Smoking or use of tobacco is a very old form of addiction), almost 3000 years old.
Tobacco, tar and nicotine are used to make cigarette while in Shisha, different sweet flavors are added for taste development. Shisha is getting very common in recent year in not only Pakistan but also in India, Bangladesh and china also.
According to the law, it is illegal to sale cigarette to a boy / girl of the age less than 9 years but this law is not implementing by the authorities. There is great number of young boys and girls those are addicted to the cigarette but in recent years the shisha smoking is very common among youngsters. It became the fashion for the young generation and separate Shisha lounge are located in hotels and restaurants.
Disadvantages of Shisha smoking:

Heart diseases
Respiratory problems
Lungs cancer
Cancer of veins
Premature delivery of baby and the respiratory diseases in the newborn baby

Shisha smoking causes all above diseases and as safety measures our government and world health organization banned all the products that contain tobacco and instructed that all Shisha cafés and hotels that are offering Shisha should discontinue their offers. All the laws made for smoking, also implemented in the case of Shisha smoking. Universities and colleges should arrange awareness programs against Shisha smoking. Parents should also guide their children about the disadvantages of Shisha smoking. Recently city district government of Lahore under the section 144 banned Shisha smoking in cafes, hotels etc. Instead of all these measures and instruction, everyday new Shisha cafes and clubs are opening in our country; government should take serious steps and create awareness about the disadvantages of Shisha.

23-Jul-2012, 09:05 PM
Soft drinks make it harder to lose weight: Study

(IANS) / 23 July 2012

Avoid soft drinks, as they could alter the way your body burns fuel and make it harder still to lose weight, says a study."This study proves our concerns over sugary drinks have been correct. Not only can regular sugar intake acutely change our body metabolism,” said Hans-Peter Kubis of Britain’s Bangor University, who led the research.

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/colathumb_2307212.jpg”In fact, it seems that our muscles are able to sense the sugars and make our metabolism more inefficient, not only in the present but in the future as well,” Kubis added.

The researcher warned that soft drinks can compromise long-term health and advised people to substitute it with plain water instead.

His researchers also showed that isolated muscle cells identify and respond to the sugary diet, and switch how they use the fuel.

”Together with our findings about how drinking soft drinks dulls the perception of sweetness, our new results give a stark warning against regularly drinking sugar sweetened drinks,” added Kubis.

The move to an inefficient metabolism was seen in male and female participants who were lightly active, and drinking soft drinks for just four weeks, according to the Daily Mail.

These factors show that regular use of sugar sweetened soft drinks drives alterations in muscles similar to those found in people with obesity problems and type 2 diabetes.

”What is clear is our body adjusts to regular soft drink consumption and prepares itself for the future diet by changing muscle metabolism via altered gene activity - encouraging unhealthy adaptations similar to those seen in people with obesity problems and type 2 diabetes.

”Together with our findings about how drinking soft drinks dulls the perception of sweetness, our new results give a stark warning against regularly drinking sugar sweetened drinks,” Kubis said.

23-Jul-2012, 09:10 PM
Reducing salt 'would cut cancer' (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-18923994#dna-comments)

Salt is in many foods, such as bread.

Cutting back on salty foods such as bacon, bread and breakfast cereals may reduce people's risk of developing stomach cancer, according to the World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF).
It wants people to eat less salt and for the content of food to be labelled more clearly.
In the UK, the WCRF said one-in-seven stomach cancers would be prevented if people kept to daily guidelines.
Cancer Research UK said this figure could be even higher.
Too much salt is bad for blood pressure and can lead to heart disease and stroke, but it can also cause cancer.
The recommended daily limit is 6g, about a level teaspoonful, but the World Cancer Research Fund said people were eating 8.6g a day.
Undetected There are around 6,000 cases of stomach cancer every year in the UK. The WCRF estimated that 14% of cases, around 800, could be avoided if everyone stuck to their 6g a day.
Kate Mendoza, head of health information at WCRF, said: "Stomach cancer is difficult to treat successfully because most cases are not caught until the disease is well-established.

Katharine Jenner from Consensus Action on Salt and Health, says eating less than six grammes of salt could prevent stroke and cancer deaths

"This places even greater emphasis on making lifestyle choices to prevent the disease occurring in the first place - such as cutting down on salt intake and eating more fruit and vegetables."
Eating too much salt is not all about sprinkling it over fish and chips or Sunday lunch, the vast majority is already inside food (http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/Goodfood/Pages/salt.aspx).
It is why the WCRF has called for a "traffic-light" system for food labelling - red for high, amber for medium and green for low.
However, this has proved controversial with many food manufacturers and supermarkets preferring other ways of labelling food.
Lucy Boyd, from Cancer Research UK, said: "This research confirms what a recently published report (http://www.nature.com/bjc/journal/v105/n2s/index.html) from Cancer Research UK has shown - too much salt also contributes considerably to the number of people getting stomach cancer in the UK.
"On average people in Britain eat too much salt and intake is highest in men.
"Improved labelling - such as traffic light labelling - could be a useful step to help consumers cut down."
A spokesman for the Department of Health said: "We already know too much salt can lead to conditions such as heart disease and stroke. That is why we are taking action through the 'Responsibility Deal' to help reduce the salt in people's diets. And we are looking at clearer... labelling on foods as part of our consultation on front-of-pack labelling.
"We keep these findings under review alongside other emerging research in the field."


23-Jul-2012, 09:30 PM
I love ginger. I've read a lot about its good health benefits.

24-Jul-2012, 11:57 PM
Negative Calorie Foods
May 11, 2012 by Sadaf Javed (http://www.urdumania.com/author/sadaf) · 1 Comment (http://www.urdumania.com/urdu-topics/health/weight-loss-health/negative-calorie-foods.php#respond)

Negative calories food means the type of foods which provide extra calories to your body that often cause obesity. Experts say that it cannot be proved scientifically that how any food can be the reason of negative calories. Because every food has some nutrients that put different effects on the bodies of different individuals. It can be the case that same food leaves different effects on two people. So, it is not right to say about any food that it is negative calories food. Negative calories food is a food that provides effects to your body opposite to the expected ones. Same thing happens when you use any food to reduce your weight but it works adversely and gives your body extra calories that make you fat. Such kind of food can be said as negative calories food. But as we have mentioned earlier that every food item has carbohydrates, proteins and fats so, it depends on your body digestive system that what type of effect it takes from these nutrients: positive or negative. Click Here To Continue Reading in English (http://www.urdumania.com/urdu-topics/health/weight-loss-health/negative-calorie-foods.php#full) http://www.urdumania.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/negative-calorie-foods.gifhttp://www.urdumania.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/negative-calorie.gif
It can be proved with an example: according to experts you should drink one glass of water before your every meal. It clears your stomach to and eaten food is easily digested in this way. By doing this, you will also eat less as compared to situation when you eat without having a glass of water at the start. But your weight keeps on increasing instead of decreasing. The reason of this obesity may be the excess quantity of water in your body. Here, we are giving you some information for the awareness about negative calories food. Vegetables: Vegetables are the best foods to avoid the effects of negative calories. Vegetables have a quality to absorb extra water. As, there are 8 calories in one cup of salad leaves so, you never need to be worried while using salads in your meals. You can use onion with salad as it gives 64 calories only. Negative calories vegetables: Brinjal, cabbage, celery, salad, carrot, tomato, calabash, fennel, spinach etc., all are negative calories vegetables. Their use can be good if you use green vegetables with these vegetables. You can use homemade pickle (chemical free) with these vegetables. Fruits: Fruits are very good for negative calories. But there should be a balance while using fruits in your daily routines. There are some fruits like grapes and pineapple which can be the reason of acidity. So, there should be balance between both fruits and vegetables. Fruits according to negative calories are: Apple, blue berries, lemon, mango, oranges, pineapple, strawberry etc.
We should be careful while having some food with enzymes or nutrition and there should be a balance in the usage of vegetables and fruits because different food items have different effect for different people.

27-Jul-2012, 05:12 PM
Depression, anxiety affects every society

(IANS) / 24 July 2012

SYDNEY - Researchers have found that depression and anxiety affects every society and country in the world, debunking old theories that only Westerners get depressed.The findings come from the world’s most comprehensive study of these mental states, carried out by researchers from the University of Queensland, Australia.

In two separate studies of anxiety disorders and major depressive disorder (that is, clinical depression) researchers found that surveys of clinical anxiety and depression have been conducted across 91 countries, involving more than 480,000 people.

Anxiety disorders were more commonly reported in Western societies than in non-western societies, even those that are currently experiencing conflict.

Clinical anxiety affected around 10 percent of people in North America, Western Europe, Australia and New Zealand compared to about eight percent in the Middle East and six percent in Asia.

The opposite was true for depression, with people in Western countries least likely to be depressed. Depression was found to be lowest in North America and highest in some parts of Asia and the Middle East, according to a Queensland statement.

About nine percent of people have major depression in Asian and Middle Eastern countries, such as India and Afghanistan, compared with about four percent in North and South America, Australia, New Zealand and east Asian countries including China, Thailand and Indonesia.

Alize Ferrari, study co-author, said findings suggested that depression appeared to be higher in parts of the world where conflict is occurring.

However, she warns that it can be difficult to obtain good quality data from some low and middle income countries.

Amanda Baxter, who led the study, also urged caution while comparing mental disorders across different countries.

”Measuring mental disorders across different cultures is challenging because many factors can influence the reported prevalence of anxiety disorders,” said Baxter.

27-Jul-2012, 05:14 PM
Two apples a day keep heart diseases away

(IANS) / 27 July 2012

Just two apples a day could help protect women against heart disease by cutting their cholesterol levels, according to study.http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/apple_277.jpgScientists found that apples significantly lowered blood fat levels in postmenopausal women, the group most at risk of heart attacks and strokes, the Daily Mail reported Thursday.
Snacking on the fruit every day for six months slashed cholesterol by almost a quarter.
The biggest reduction was seen in low-density lipoprotein, the so-called “bad” cholesterol that furs up arteries and raises the risk of a life-threatening clot forming near the heart or brain.
The findings, by researchers at Florida State University in the US, support previous evidence that apples could be good for the heart.
But the latest study suggests they could benefit one of the highest-risk groups.

27-Jul-2012, 05:20 PM
What Is Insomnia And Its Remedies http://www.urdumania.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-postratings/images/thumbs/rating_1_off.gifhttp://www.urdumania.com/wp-content/plugins/wp-postratings/images/thumbs/rating_2_off.gif (No Ratings Yet)

May 25, 2012 by Sadaf Javed (http://www.urdumania.com/author/sadaf) · 1 Comment (http://www.urdumania.com/urdu-topics/diseases/what-is-insomnia-and-its-remedies.php#respond)

Insomnia in simple words can be referred to as lack of sleep. People suffering this disease feel trouble in sleeping. Strange is the fact that some people sleep too much and stay worried because of this oversleeping habit nut on the other side there are many whose worry is lack of sleep. Nature has kept a balance in everything so neither lacking nor being in excess is good. Moderate way is the best way.
Click Here to Continue Reading in English (http://www.urdumania.com/urdu-topics/diseases/what-is-insomnia-and-its-remedies.php#full)
http://www.urdumania.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/sleeping-difficulties.gifhttp://www.urdumania.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/Insomnia-Causes.gif Causes
You fall victim to insomnia when:

You work longer till late night
You think about something excessively
You are hit by any trouble which you cannot share with others
You are afraid of your past or future
You oversleep in day time or sleep in unusual time
You wake up too often in night
You get up too early in morning
Or maybe you do not want to sleep

However one more fatal form of insomnia is permanent insomnia. Other forms of this disease which are not that fatal hit different people in different ages of their lives and are eventually fixed but permanent insomnia is with the patient for his rest of life.
There are few causes of permanent insomnia:

Having such diseases in which patients feel uncomfortable while breathing
Using caffeine, alcohol and nicotine and other edibles which have such drugs
Continuous problems and depressions in which you need a psychiatrist
Any mental pressure which keeps your mood down
Due to tough routine of work
Nightmares which don not let you sleep

Besides all these above said factors if you take continuous tension of any problem, gradually you sleep goes away. Measures which may help you avoid this:
First of all you should have proper sleeping habits and you need to limit your work within your working hours. Go to sleep when it is the time to sleep and do not worry about pending work as you can do it next morning.
Try not to eat anything before you go to bed and if it is one of your habits, quit it. When you fill your stomach before bed time it does not let you fall asleep.

28-Jul-2012, 04:58 PM
Beware! You may be more vulnerable to hepatitis than you think

(IANS) / 28 July 2012

Casual one-night stands and multiple partners could be the starting points of serious health concerns. Not just for HIV, which most people are now aware of, but more for hepatitis.Expressing concern over the low awareness among people, especially youngsters, about hepatitis, doctors say that much more needs to be done to spread the word about the disease, like has been done for HIV/AIDS.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/hepi_28072012.jpg“Very often, I have young patients coming to me for a post-exposure test for HIV after unprotected sex, or sex with multiple partners. What they don’t realise is that the probability of contacting the hepatitis B or even C virus through the sexual route is much higher than HIV,” Monica Mahajan, senior consultant at Max Hospital here, told IANS.
The inflammatory disease of the liver affects 100 million with chronic hepatitis B infection in the Southeast Asian region, WHO said. According to doctors, two to five percent of India’s population is affected by hepatitis B.
D. Sreenivasa, consultant at the gastroenterology centre at Fortis Hospital, Bangalore, said that 20 percent of the population is prone to the infection in the future.
Mahajan said the hepatitis virus is 50-100 times more contagious than HIV.
“Sexual contact is one of the most common routes for the virus to spread. But it can also spread through other body fluids like blood; so beware of infected needles. Having said that, cases of the virus spreading because of blood contamination has gone down relatively,” Mahajan said.
“Mother-to-child transmission is also mostly taken care of because of all the screening tests that a pregnant women goes through. Plus, now the universal immunisation programme includes protection against hepatitis B, making children less vulnerable. So it’s those in the sexually active age group, in 20s-30s, who are unaware that they are vulnerable,” she added.
The infection can cause acute illness with symptoms such as nausea, dark urine, vomiting and abdominal pain.
According to WHO, about 65 percent of those with hepatitis B and 75 percent of those with hepatitis C do not know they are infected. In the case of hepatitis B, sometimes the infection remains asymptomatic for almost two decades, before becoming chronic hepatitis and seriously affecting the liver, sometimes leading to liver cancer.
“Around 60 percent of liver cancer cases in India is because of hepatitis B,” said gastroenterologist Arul Prakash of Chennai’s MOIT Hospitals.
The good news, however, is that there is a vaccination for hepatitis B.
“Fortunately, there is a vaccination which can protect one from hepatitis B. Unfortunately, not many people know about it. I often get students applying to foreign universities, coming to get their health certificates, and having no clue that there is a vaccination for hepatitis,” said Satish Koul, internal medicine, Columbia Asia Hospital, Gurgaon.
“Without undermining the risk of HIV, it is pertinent to know that we lose more people to hepatitis B than to the aforementioned, and that the mode of transmission of hepatitis is same as sexually transmitted disease (STD),” Koul told IANS.
To state an example which is worth emulating, Fortis’ Sreenivasa said: “Taiwan had a very high incidence of hepatitis B but after the vaccination against it was introduced, it came down to zero. Now it doesn’t have any new infection cases”.
“Awareness is the only way out and the health sector, hospitals and even the media should take the initiative to do that. Free screening camps can also be organised,” Sreenivasa said.

28-Jul-2012, 05:02 PM
Ananas Fruit: Health Benefits of Pineapple Fruit

June 18, 2011 by SJ (http://www.urdumania.com/author/Saaju) · 2 Comments (http://www.urdumania.com/urdu-topics/health/fruits-and-vegetables/ananas-fruit-health-benefits-of-pineapple-fruit.php#respond)

Pineapple is regarded as on of the unique fruits due to its enriched taste and fascinating health benefits. Pineapple juice in summer season not only nourishes our thirst but also gives a soothing effect to the mind and heart. If the patient of liver or stomach intake pineapple juice, their ailment would be magically vanish. Pineapple is enriched with vitamin C that is powerful ingredient in maintaining eye sight and also affects the body healthfully.



30-Jul-2012, 10:27 PM
Curry compound in turmeric may curb diabetes risk

(Reuters) / 30 July 2012

Supplements containing a compound found in curry spice may help prevent diabetes in people at high risk, according to a Thai study.Researchers, whose results were published in the journal Diabetes Care, found that over nine months, a daily dose of curcumin seemed to prevent new cases of diabetes among people with so-called prediabetes - abnormally high blood sugar levels that may progress to full-blown type 2 diabetes.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/health1_30072012.jpgCurcumin is a compound in turmeric spice. Previous lab research has suggested it can fight inflammation and so-called oxidative damage to body cells. Those two processes are thought to feed a range of diseases, including type 2 diabetes.
“Because of its benefits and safety, we propose that curcumin extract may be used for an intervention therapy for the prediabetes population,” wrote study leader Somlak Chuengsamarn of Srinakharinwirot University in Nakomnayok, Thailand.
The study included 240 Thai adults with prediabetes who were randomly assigned to take either curcumin capsules or a placebo. The ones taking curcumin took six supplement capsules a day, each of which contained 250 milligrams of “curcuminoids”.
After nine months, 19 of the 116 placebo patients had developed type 2 diabetes. That compared with none of the 119 patients taking curcumin.
The researchers found that the supplement seemed to improve the function of beta-cells, which are cells in the pancreas that release the blood sugar-regulating hormone insulin. They speculate that the anti-inflammatory effects of curcumin help protect beta-cells from damage.
But a diabetes expert not involved in the study said it’s still too early for people to head to the health food store for curcumin supplements.
“This looks promising, but there are still a lot of questions,” said Constance Brown-Riggs, a certified diabetes educator and spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
The trial lasted only nine months, and it’s already known from longer-lasting, larger trials that lifestyle changes — including calorie-cutting and exercise — can prevent or delay type 2 diabetes in people with prediabetes.
Brown-Riggs added that consumers can’t be sure that a product actually contains the ingredients, or the amount of ingredient, listed on the label.
“If I was talking to a patient about this, I’d say concentrate on eating healthy and overall lifestyle,” she said.

17-Aug-2012, 05:11 PM
Chemical in plastic bottles aggravates heart risk
(IANS) / 17 August 2012

The presence of high levels of urinary Bisphenol-A (BPA), a chemical used in plastic products like water bottles and baby feeding bottles, may be linked to narrowing of arteries and risk of heart disease."Our latest study strengthens a growing body of work that suggests that BPA may be adding to known risk factors for heart disease," said David Melzer, professor of epidemiology and public health at Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry (PCMD) of Exeter University.

A team led by Melzer from the PCMD and University of Cambridge analysed data from 591 patients, who participated in the Metabonomics and Genomics Coronary Artery Disease (MaGiCAD) study in Cambridgeshire, UK, the journal Public Library of Science ONE reports.

Patients were classified into severe, intermediate or normal coronary artery disease (CAD) categories based on narrowing of their coronary arteries, which deliver oxygen-rich blood to the heart muscle known as myocardium, according to an Exeter statement.

In all, 385 patients were identified to have severe CAD, 86 intermediate CAD and 120 had normal coronary arteries. The vessels that deliver oxygen-rich blood to the myocardium are known as coronary arteries.

The study shows that the concentration of urinary BPA, a controversial chemical commonly used in food and drink containers, was significantly higher in those with severe CAD compared to those with normal coronary arteries.

Many nations moved to ban BPA from the manufacture of baby's bottles and other feeding equipment, following a PCMD study in September 2008. The BPA is used in polycarbonate plastic products such as refillable drinks containers, compact disks, some plastic eating utensils and many other products in everyday use.

Other studies related to BPA carried out by the same research team have found associations with altered testosterone, suggesting that the chemical may be more active in the body than previously thought.

Tamara Galloway, professor of toxicology and study co-author from Exeter, said: "These results are important because they give us a better understanding of the mechanisms underlying the association between BPA and heart disease."

17-Aug-2012, 05:13 PM
Ginger could help control diabetes

(IANS) / 8 August 2012

SYDNEY - Ginger could help manage high levels of blood sugar which create complications for long-term diabetic patients.A new report reveals the potential power of ginger to control blood glucose by using muscle cells. Ginger extracts were able to increase the uptake of glucose into muscle cells independently of insulin, says Basil Roufogalis, professor of pharmaceutical chemistry, University of Syndey, who led the study.

”This assists in the management of high levels of blood sugar that create complications for long-term diabetic patients, and may allow cells to operate independently of insulin,” says Roufogalis, the journal Planta Medica reports.

”The components responsible for the increase in glucose were gingerols—the major phenolic components of the ginger rhizome. Under normal conditions, blood glucose level is strictly maintained within a narrow range, and skeletal muscle is a major site of glucose clearance in the body,” says Roufogalis, according to a Sydney statement.

The pharmacy researchers extracted whole ginger rhizomes obtained from Buderim Ginger and showed that that one fraction of the extract was the most effective in reproducing the increase in glucose uptake by the whole extract in muscle cells grown in culture.

Analysis by colleagues Colin Duke and Van Tran from Sydney’s Faculty of Pharmacy showed this fraction was rich in gingerols.

17-Aug-2012, 05:14 PM
Grapefruit juice boosts cancer drugs’ efficacy

(IANS) / 9 August 2012

A glass of grapefruit juice a day could indeed boost the efficacy of cancer drugs, check their side effects and also reduce the cost of the medication, according to a study.Combining the fruit with a specific anti-cancer drug delivered the same benefits as patients would have from taking more than three times of the medication by itself.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/juice1_09082021.jpgUniversity of Chicago researchers said the combination could help patients avoid side effects associated with high doses of the drug and reduce the cost of the medication, the journal Clinical Cancer Research reports.
Grapefruit juice is known to prevent enzymes in the intestine that break down certain drugs, meaning more can enter the blood stream, according to the Daily Mail.
Doctors often tell patients to avoid some fruits when taking particular medications as it can cause serious side-effects or overdose.
Scientists now wanted to see if they could harness this effect. Study leader Ezra Cohen said: “Grapefruit juice, and drugs with a similar mechanism, can significantly increase blood levels of many drugs.”
“But this has long been considered an overdose hazard. Instead, we wanted to see if grapefruit juice can be used in a controlled fashion to increase the availability and efficacy of sirolimus,” added Cohen.
Sirolimus or rapamycin is used to prevent rejection in organ transplantation but is also being tested as a treatment for certain tumours.
The Chicago team showed that patients who drank eight ounces of grapefruit a day increased their sirolimus levels by 350 percent. Certain substances in grapefruit juice are known to stop an enzyme in the small intestine from breaking down some medications.
This allows more of the drug to enter the blood stream, and could at one level cause serious side-effects or accidental overdose.

17-Aug-2012, 05:15 PM
Red meat could elevate bowel cancer risk
(IANS) / 11 August 2012

LONDON - Your fondness for red meat might increase your chances of developing bowel cancer due to large amounts of iron in it.The new discovery could open the way to new treatments to mop up iron in the bowels of those who develop cells hit by the defective gene called APC.

Mice fed low iron diet remained cancer free even if the gene was defective, but when it functioned normally, high iron levels did no harm.

However, mice with the defective gene given high iron intake were two to three times more likely to develop the disease, the Daily Mail reports.

Owen Sansom, deputy director of the Cancer Research UK Institute, Glasgow, who led the study, said: “We’ve made a huge step in understanding how bowel cancer develops. The APC gene is faulty in around eight out of 10 bowel cancers but until now we haven’t known how this causes the disease.”

”It’s clear that iron is playing a critical role in controlling the development of bowel cancer in people with a faulty APC gene. And, intriguingly, our study shows that even very high levels of iron in the diet don’t cause cancer by itself, but rely on the APC gene,” said Sansom

18-Aug-2012, 04:26 PM
Sore throat an easy-to-handle ailment

Dr Hussein
Al Kadiri, (ENT specialist, Zulekha Hospital, Sharjah) / 18 August 2012

A sore throat is one of the most common conditions seen by a family General Practitioner (GP). People use the term to describe almost any feeling in throat, from dryness to acute pain. In severe cases this may lead to difficulty in swallowing solids, liquids and occasionally saliva, explained Dr Hussein Al Kadiri, ENT specialist, Zulekha Hospital, Sharjah.About 70 per cent of all sore throat cases are due to viral infection rather than bacterial infection. Symptoms of sore throats vary in children and adults.
In adults it can be an Acute Viral Sore Throat which is an infection of the upper respiratory tract. Viral sore throats are more common during the winter and usually settle after a few days. Symptoms may include runny nose, sneezing hoarseness, dry cough due to chest infection, dullness of hearing and redness of the pharynx, tonsils and roof of the mouth (soft palate).
The treatment for this kind of sore throat is self-care by the individual. Generally the sore throat will clear up on its own. To ease the discomfort it is recommended to use saline gargles, take common painkillers, drink plenty of fluids and take honey and lemon mixtures
Sore throat can be also Recurring Viral Sore Throat. This is when people should go to see their GP. A swab of the throat might be taken to identify the cause of the sore throat. If the results show a bacterial infection, a course of antibiotics is usually prescribed. The antibiotic normally prescribed is Penicillin. Patients allergic to Penicillin are given an alternative antibiotic such as Erythromycin.
Last form of sore throat in adults is called Quinsy (Peritonsillar Abscess), which usually occurs following the spread of a tonsil infection. Pus builds up causing an abscess or ‘Quinsy’ to develop. Symptoms include acute sore throat, inability to swallow saliva resulting in dribbling, swelling in the neck caused by the abscess spreading to the roof of the mouth (soft palate)
Treatment of an early abscess is by antibiotics while a fully developed abscess requires hospital admission where antibiotics are given through a drip (intravenously). It may also be necessary to drain the pus. This is done by making a small incision under local anesthetic.
Sore throats in children are so frequent and can be due to viral infections. Children with a sore throat may also have a runny nose and/or a cough. Taking common painkillers, drinking plenty of fluids, and having plenty of bed rest can ease the discomfort.

18-Aug-2012, 04:28 PM
Stress, depression can shrink brain
(IANS) / 14 August 2012

WASHINGTON - Don’t take stress or depression lightly, they can actually shrink the brain and contribute to both emotional and mental degradation, according to a US study.Now researchers have discovered one reason why this occurs - a single genetic switch that triggers loss of brain connections in humans and depression in animal models.

The findings show that the genetic switch known as a transcription factor represses the expression of several genes that are necessary for the formation of synaptic connections between brain cells, which in turn could contribute to loss of brain mass, the journal Nature Medicine reports.

”We wanted to test the idea that stress causes a loss of brain synapses (junctions of nerve cells) in humans,” said senior study author Ronald Duman, professor of psychiatry, neurobiology and pharmacology at Yale University.

”We show that circuits normally involved in emotion, as well as cognition, are disrupted when this single transcription factor is activated,” he added.

The research team analysed tissue of depressed and non-depressed patients donated from a brain bank and looked for different patterns of gene activation, according to a statement from Yale.

The brains of patients who had been depressed exhibited lower levels of expression in genes that are required for the function and structure of brain synapses.

18-Aug-2012, 08:03 PM
Stress, depression can shrink brain
(IANS) / 14 August 2012

WASHINGTON - Don’t take stress or depression lightly, they can actually shrink the brain and contribute to both emotional and mental degradation, according to a US study.Now researchers have discovered one reason why this occurs - a single genetic switch that triggers loss of brain connections in humans and depression in animal models.

The findings show that the genetic switch known as a transcription factor represses the expression of several genes that are necessary for the formation of synaptic connections between brain cells, which in turn could contribute to loss of brain mass, the journal Nature Medicine reports.

”We wanted to test the idea that stress causes a loss of brain synapses (junctions of nerve cells) in humans,” said senior study author Ronald Duman, professor of psychiatry, neurobiology and pharmacology at Yale University.

”We show that circuits normally involved in emotion, as well as cognition, are disrupted when this single transcription factor is activated,” he added.

The research team analysed tissue of depressed and non-depressed patients donated from a brain bank and looked for different patterns of gene activation, according to a statement from Yale.

The brains of patients who had been depressed exhibited lower levels of expression in genes that are required for the function and structure of brain synapses.

A very clear example of this is our politicians with shrinked brains.

22-Aug-2012, 09:04 AM
STUDY: A Chemical Found In Green Tea Makes Tumors Vanish

Powerful new anti-cancer drugs based on green tea could soon be developed after scientists found an extract from the beverage could make almost half of tumours vanish. The University of Strathclyde team made 40 per cent of human skin cancer tumours disappear using the compound, in a laboratory study.
Green tea has long been suspected of having anti-cancer properties and the extract, called epigallocatechin gallate, has been investigated before.
However, this is the first time researchers have managed to make it effective at shrinking tumours.
Previous attempts to capitalize on its cancer-fighting properties have failed because scientists used intravenous drips, which failed to deliver enough of the extract to the tumours themselves.
So, the Strathclyde team devised a “targeted delivery system,” piggy-backing the extract on proteins that carry iron molecules, which cancer tumours vacuum up.
The lab test on one type of human skin cancer showed 40 percent of tumors disappeared after a month of treatment, while an additional 30 percent shrank.
Dr. Christine Dufès, a senior lecturer at the Strathclyde Institute of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences, who led the research, said: “These are very encouraging results which we hope could pave the way for new and effective cancer treatments.
“When we used our method, the green tea extract reduced the size of many of the tumours every day, in some cases removing them altogether.
"By contrast, the extract had no effect at all when it was delivered by other means, as every one of these tumours continued to grow.
“This research could open doors to new treatments for what is still one of the biggest killer diseases in many countries.”
She added: “I was expecting good results, but not as strong as these.”
Dr. Dufès said population studies had previously indicated that green tea had anti-cancer properties, and scientists had since identified the active compound as epigallocatechin gallate.
But the Strathclyde researchers were the first to deliver it in high enough doses for tumours to have an effect.
She explained: “The problems with this extract is that when it’s administered intravenously, it goes everywhere in the body, so when it gets to the tumors it’s too diluted.
“With the targeted delivery system, it’s taken straight to the tumors without any effect on normal tissue.”
Cancer scientists are increasingly using targeted delivery to improve results, relying on the many different "receptors" that tumors have for different biological substances.
In this instance, the scientists used the fact that tumors have receptors for transferrin, a plasma protein which transports iron through the blood.
The results have been published in the journal Nanomedicine.
The “ultimate objective” was a clinical trial in humans —but Dr. Dufès said that was some way off.
“We have got to optimize the delivery system and therapeutic effect first,” she said.
Dr. Julie Sharp, from Cancer Research UK, said: “A few studies have shown that extracts from green tea may have some effect on cancer cells in the lab but this has not yet been backed up by research in humans.”
She added: “It’s far too soon to say if enjoying a cup of green tea has any wider benefits in combating cancer but we know that a healthy balanced diet can help to reduce the risk.”


22-Aug-2012, 09:19 AM

Green Tea for Weight Loss:Heat up 8 glasses of water. When it begins to boil, add 6 tsp of green tea and let it simmer on low heat for 10 to 15 minutes. When 6 glasses of the water remains, add:
A stick of cinnamon (http://www.pakladies.com/)
1 green cardamom
1 small stick liquorice or 1 tsp of powder
A pinch kalonji
1 clove
Ginger and garlic 1 piece each.
When it begins to boil again, add a few mint leaves and store it in a thermos. Sprinkle a few drops of lemon (http://www.pakladies.com/) and brown sugar before drinking. Drink 6 to 8 cups daily.

22-Aug-2012, 07:22 PM
چھ گلاس روزانہ ؟؟؟؟؟....
..ایک آرٹیکل کے مطابق زیادہ گرین ٹی پینے سے لیور بھی ڈیمیج ہو نے کی شاھدتیں موجود ہیں .

23-Aug-2012, 12:47 AM
Fall risk may rise after cataract surgery

(Reuters) / 19 August 2012

Contrary to some past research, a new study finds that elderly adults who have cataract surgery could face an increased risk of falls and fractures in the next year - at least if they have only one eye done.The increase was seen mostly in patients age 80 and up, and researchers say it’s not clear what factors - related to the surgery or not - might explain the added risk.
A cataract is a clouding of the eye’s lens, usually caused when proteins in the lens condense into clumps with age. Some studies, but not all, have suggested that cataract removal curbs older adults’ risk of falls and bone breaks.
In the new study, researchers looked at records for more than 15,000 Australian adults who’d had a first-time cataract surgery.
Overall, 600 were hospitalized for a fall-related hip fracture or other injury - either during the year before or the year after the eye surgery. And the risk, it turned out, was greater in the year after.
There were 273 hospitalizations in the year before surgery, and 352 in the year after.
When the researchers accounted for some other factors - like a patient’s age and other medical conditions - the risk of hospitalization was 27 percent higher in the year after cataract surgery.
The findings, reported in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, conflict with a US study published just last month.
That study reviewed Medicare records for one million older Americans with cataracts. It found that those who had cataract surgery had a somewhat lower risk of breaking a bone in the following year, versus those who did not have surgery.
But there are differences in the study groups that may help explain the conflicting findings, according to Lynn B. Meuleners, of Curtin University in Perth, Australia, who led the new study.
For one, she said in an email, her study looked at patients who’d had cataract surgery in only the ‘first eye.’ In Western Australia, where the study was done, people typically wait six months to a year to have their second eye treated, if needed.
Meuleners suspects that may be a factor in the higher fall risk after surgery. If people had ‘lopsided vision’ after single-eye surgery, that might have made them more prone to falls.
‘It may also have been due to wearing old glasses and having poor vision in the corrected eye because of the glasses, and poor vision in the other eye due to cataract,’ Meuleners explained.
‘One would expect better vision if both eyes had successful cataract surgery in a short period of time - generally 2 to 6 weeks,’ Meuleners said. ‘Therefore, ‘both eye’ patients may have lower risk of falls if vision is a risk factor.’
The US Medicare study, she noted, did not look separately at patients who’d had surgery in only one eye or had both eyes done with a short wait in between.
According to the US National Eye Institute, the typical wait time between two cataract surgeries is four to eight weeks.
It seems logical that cataract surgery could prevent some fall-related injuries, since vision problems are considered a risk factor for older people’s falls.
But so far, research findings have been mixed as to whether that’s true.
One reason is that most studies, like the current one and the one in the U.S., have been observational. That means researchers look at medical records or self-reports from people who have undergone cataract surgery, or have not had it, and track their falls and injuries.
That approach has a number of limitations, though, and cannot prove whether cataract surgery, itself, affects the risk of falls and fractures.
Meuleners’ team also lacked data on a number of factors that affect older people’s fall risk - like their medication use, cognitive function and whether they had balance and mobility problems.
She said it’s possible, for instance, that the surgery, or the sedatives used during the procedure, worsened certain health problems for some patients - especially the most elderly - noting that the post-surgery increase in fall risk was largely among patients age 80 and up.
All of those questions warrant further study, Meuleners said.
For now, she recommended that people having cataract surgery talk with their doctors.
‘Elderly patients, in particular those 80 and up having ‘first eye’ surgery, should discuss with their surgeon their visual aids requirements after surgery at the earliest possible time,’ Meuleners said.
She also suggested they discuss whether a sedative is necessary during surgery.
Then there is the question of when to have the second eye done, if needed.
‘One would think that timely second eye surgery would be beneficial,’ Meuleners noted. ‘So careful consideration should be given to wanting (or needing) to postpone second eye surgery.’
In the U.S., it’s estimated that half of people who live to age 80 will develop cataracts or have cataract surgery. More than three million surgeries are done nationally every year, at a cost of $1,500 to $3,000 each.

24-Aug-2012, 04:07 AM
Weight loss surgery helps prevent diabetes

(Reuters) / 23 August 2012

Treating obese people with weight loss surgery dramatically delays or prevents the onset of type 2 diabetes, according to a new study.‘We saw a marked delay (in the development of diabetes) over 15 years,’ said coauthor Dr. Lars Sjostrom of the University of Gothenburg in Sweden. ‘Some of those surgical patients will probably develop diabetes later. But over a lifetime, there will be a large difference.’
Among the 1,658 volunteers who received surgery, mostly stomach stapling, the risk of developing diabetes was about one in 150 per year. The 1,771 people in the control group who received standard care had a risk four times higher: one in 35 per year.
‘Most of the previous studies on bariatric surgery have focused on the remission of diabetes. This study is more about preventing diabetes,’ Ted Adams of the University of Utah, who was not connected with the research, told Reuters Health.
The improvement was seen even though the people who underwent surgery initially had a higher risk of developing diabetes than those in the control group.
‘If anything, the surgery group was a bit heavier and had more risk factors than the control group at the start of the study, and still the outcome at 10 years and 15 years was much more favorable in the surgery group,’ Sjostrom told Reuters Health. ‘It’s favorable in spite of these differences.’
The team, which reported its results in the New England Journal of Medicine, also found that a person’s starting body mass index - a measure of weight versus height - did not predict whether patients would develop type 2 diabetes. Blood sugar levels at the beginning of the study, before surgery, were better indicators.
Sjostrom said a similar effect has been seen in earlier studies looking at the impact of the surgery on rates of heart attack, stroke, cancer prevention and overall mortality.
As a result, ‘it may be time to give less attention to the degree of obesity when patients are selected for bariatric surgery,’ he said.
About 285 million people worldwide have type 2 diabetes and people with severe obesity have the highest risk. More than one third of US adults are obese. About 220,000 people had bariatric surgery in 2009, according to the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS). Surgery costs range from about $11,500 to $26,000.
‘IMPRACTICAL AND UNJUSTIFIED’ In a Journal editorial, Dr. Danny Jacobs of Duke University School of Medicine in Durham, N.C., said, ‘it remains impractical and unjustified to contemplate the performance of bariatric surgery in the millions of eligible obese adults.’
But the results may help doctors understand why the various types of surgery work and pick out the best candidates for the operation, he said.
Sjostrom said more studies are needed and a cost analysis of the pros and cons of surgery, now underway, could be published in a year or so.
‘It may turn out that this is very cost-effective,’ he said. ‘You might even save money if you operate on patients with impaired fasting glucose because if you operate on 13 such patients, you prevent diabetes in 10 of them.’
Dr. Jaime Ponce, president of the ASMBS, said the study is more evidence that being overweight is important for the development of diabetes.
‘It means anybody who is overweight, they need to start treatment, although not everyone needs surgery,’ he told Reuters Health. The first step is nutrition counseling, diet, exercise and, possibly, medication. ‘If you fail on all those things, before you get sicker, you need to think about surgery.’
Three patients died within 90 days of their surgery, and between two to five percent each had either lung complications, vomiting, infections, bleeding or a blood clot.
Ponce said the procedure is ‘as safe as gall bladder surgery.’
The link between obesity and diabetes is well documented, and making lifestyle changes or taking weight-reducing drugs can cut the risk of diabetes by 40 to 45 percent.
The new study, part of the larger Swedish Obese Subject study, was designed to see if the surgical weight loss would have the same effect. None of the patients included in the test had diabetes when the project began in 1987.
Participants chose whether or not to have surgery, and enrollment ended in February 2001. Stomach stapling was the most common procedure (69 percent), followed by gastric banding (19 percent) and gastric bypass (12 percent).
In the surgery group, the average weight loss at the 10- and 15-year mark was 20 kilograms, or 44 pounds. The non-surgery group - which received standard care consisting of recommendations for healthier eating and more physical activity - stayed within three kilograms (seven pounds) of their starting weight.
‘This is simply additional information that can help a patient and clinician regarding whether to have the surgery, as they weigh a number of factors,’ said Adams. ‘Preventing diabetes is really a meaningful contribution to the long-term quality of life.’

09-Sep-2012, 10:49 PM
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24-Sep-2012, 10:45 PM
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01-Oct-2012, 09:20 PM
Turmeric can soothe gastric inflammation, ulcers

(IANS) / 23 September 2012

Turmeric at the optimum dose is highly effective in soothing gastric inflammation and ulceration, which could be the key to developing new drugs against such stomach disorders, say Indian scientists.Turmeric, which belongs to the ginger family of plants, has been used as an alternative medicine since the last 3,000 years. It is also known to have antiseptic properties.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/turmeric1_23092012.jpgCurcumin is its major component responsible for the spice’s yellow colour and its therapeutic effects.
“It (curcumin) has been shown to be a good cure for gastric ailments like inflammation and ulceration. While its low doses are not effective, at high doses it might aggravate the situation. But we have come up with the optimum dose at which curcumin is therapeutic,” Snehasikta Swarnakar, senior scientist at Indian Institute of Chemical Biology (IICB)’s Drug Development Diagnostic and Biotechnology Division, who led the research, told IANS.
IICB is an institute under the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), India’s premier industrial R&D organisation.
Gastric ulceration and inflammation occur as a side effect to indiscriminate use of pain-killers (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or NSAIDs) and also due to stress.
Researcher conducted on rats helped in successfully evaluating the optimum dose. “For rats, the proper dose is around 50 mg per kg of their body weight, which is equivalent to 100 mg per kg of body weight in humans,” said Swarnakar.
The study, published in 2012 in the Anti-oxidants and Redox Signaling Journal, was also the first to shed light on the exact mechanism by which curcumin aids the healing process.
“This is the first study to reveal that the presence of curcumin in the system before or after ulcer development may promote formation of new blood vessels at the site of healing, and restore collagen fibres - the tissue that adds structural strength to body parts,” said co-researcher Nilanjana Maulik of the University of Connecticut School of Medicine, Farmington, US.
NSAIDs like indomethacin breaks up the blood vessel network in the stomach tissues and disrupts the collagen fibres - the tissue responsible for structural strength.
“Curcumin comes to the rescue by regulating the levels of two enzymes involved in the formation of new blood vessels, Swarnakar said.
One of the enzymes - MMP-2 - is a house-keeping enzyme that should be present in the system, and the other - MMP-9 - is inflammatory which is not required in the body.
“Curcumin increases the levels of MMP-2, while simultaneously lowering the MMP-9 level. This balance between the two enzymes is the key to its actions,” Swarnakar said.

01-Oct-2012, 09:22 PM

01-Oct-2012, 09:23 PM

01-Oct-2012, 09:35 PM

05-Oct-2012, 02:41 AM
Vitamin D not likely to ease severity of cold

(IANS) / 4 October 2012

Vitamin D does not reduce the severity of colds, even for those who received a monthly dose of 100,000 units in a trial, says a study.

The association of Vitamin D deficit and susceptibility to viral respiratory tract infections has been unclear, said the University of Otago study.
David R. Murdoch, University of Otago, New Zealand, and colleagues conducted a randomized trial to examine the effect of Vitamin D supplementation on rate and severity of upper respiratory tract infections (URTIs) in healthy adults.
The study, conducted between February 2010 and November 2011, included 322 healthy adults in New Zealand, reported the Journal of American Medical Association.
Participants were randomly assigned to receive an initial dose of 200,000 units of oral Vitamin D3, then 200,000 units on month later, then 100,000 units monthly, or placebo administered in an identical dosing regimen, for a total of 18 months, according to an Otago statement.
Researchers found that there was no statistically significant differences in the number of URTIs per participant (average, 3.7 per person in the vitamin D group and 3.8 per person in the placebo group).
“The main finding from this study is that a monthly dose of 100,000 IU of Vitamin D3 in healthy adults did not significantly reduce the incidence or severity of URTIs,” the study authors wrote.

10-Oct-2012, 02:17 AM
Watermelon could help prevent heart attack, curb weight

(IANS) / 5 October 2012

A new US study has found a daily slice of watermelon could help prevent heart disease by halting the build-up of harmful cholesterol and also be a help in weight control.http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/watermelon_052012.jpgScientists who carried out studies on mice fed a high-fat diet found the fruit halved the rate at which ‘bad’ low-density lipoprotein, or LDL, accumulated, Daily Mail reported.
LDL is a form of cholesterol that leads to clogged arteries and heart disease.
The researchers from Purdue University, US, also observed that eating watermelon regularly helped to control weight gain and resulted in fewer fatty deposits inside blood vessels.
They believe the secret to watermelon’s health-boosting properties lies in citrulline, a chemical found in the juice.
Although the latest investigation showed no significant effects on blood pressure, it did reveal watermelons had a powerful impact on other heart risk factors.
In Britain around 270,000 people a year suffer heart attack and nearly one in three die before they could reach hospital.

10-Oct-2012, 02:18 AM
Eating tomatoes lowers stroke risk

(IANS) / 9 October 2012

Eating tomatoes and tomato-based foods lowers stroke risks, thanks to lycopene, an antioxidant, suggests a study from Finland.http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/toma_09102012.jpgThe study found that people with the highest amounts of lycopene in their blood were 55 percent less likely to have a stroke than people with the lowest amounts of lycopene in their blood.

The research involved 1,031 Finnish men aged between 46 and 65 years, who were tested for lycopene levels in their blood at the beginning of the study and were followed for an average of 12 years.

During that time, 67 men had a stroke, (sudden loss of brain function caused by a blockage or rupture of a blood vessel of the organ), the journal Neurology reports.

Among the men with the lowest levels of lycopene, 25 of 258 had a stroke. Among those with the highest levels of lycopene, 11 of 259 men had a stroke, according to a statement of the University of Eastern Finland (UEF).

When researchers looked at just strokes due to blood clots, the results were even stronger. Those with the highest levels of lycopene were 59 percent less likely to have a stroke than those with the lowest levels.

"This study adds to the evidence that a diet high in fruits and vegetables is associated with a lower risk of stroke," said study author Jouni Karppi, from the UEF, Kuopio.

"The results support the recommendation that people get more than five servings of fruits and vegetables a day, which would likely lead to a major reduction in the number of strokes worldwide, according to previous research," added Karppi.

The study also looked at blood levels of the antioxidants alpha-carotene, beta-carotene, alpha-tocopherol and retinol, but found no link between the blood levels and risk of stroke.

10-Oct-2012, 02:19 AM
Vitamin pill a day helps boost memory

(IANS) / 8 October 2012

A daily multivitamin tablet may boost the memory and slow mental decline, the Daily Mail reported Sunday.
According to new studies, taking supplements has a beneficial effect on memory and may work by increasing the efficiency of brain cells.

One study showed that after just four weeks there were measurable changes in electrical activity in the brain when carrying out memory tests.

The body needs 13 vitamins to function properly and maintain health.

Vitamins A, C, D, E and K and the eight B vitamins each have specific job in the body.

Vitamin C keeps cells healthy, D regulates calcium and E maintains cell structure, while the B vitamins, including folic acid, have a wide range of functions.

David Kennedy, of the Brain, Performance and Nutrition Research Centre at Northumbria University, said: “The evidence is still limited but the studies hint at some possible beneficial effects.

”Optimal brain function depends on an adequate level of all of the vitamins.”

10-Oct-2012, 02:31 AM
The A-Z of Healthy Eating

There’s an added emphasis on eating healthy and moderating your weight today, mostly because disease and ill-health are more rampant with the sedentary lifestyles we lead. Good health starts by watching what you eat, when you eat, and how you eat. So get started on the road to well-being by following the A-Z of eating healthfully:
A – Add more fruits and vegetables to your diet – they’re rich in vitamins and nutrients that help keep you fit as a fiddle.
B – Breakfast is important; never skip the first meal of the day because it boosts your metabolism and gives you energy to get through the day.
C – Carbohydrates must be eaten in moderate amounts – choose good carbs like fruits and veggies and whole grains which metabolize slowly and release sugar into your bloodstream gradually; avoid bad carbs like processed food, junk food and others which spike your blood sugar level and add to your weight woes.
D – Diet sensibly – starving yourself is a bad idea since it gives rise to binges. Eat healthy and small meals, five to six times a day.
E – Eat slowly, chew your food well, and minimize your portions; stop eating just before you start to feel full.
F – Fatty foods must be avoided – steer clear of sugary snacks, ice creams, cakes, pastries, fast food and other items that contain saturated fat or processed ingredients.
G – Get moving – for any diet to achieve greater value, exercise is a must; so get rid of your sedentary lifestyle and start becoming more active.
H – Eat all your meals at the same hour every day; when you have set mealtimes, your body does not have to make adjustments each day.
I – Increase the number of meals you eat, and limit the amount you eat during each meal; small meals every few hours maximize your metabolism and boost your health.
J – Jumpstart your day with a glass of fresh juice instead of resorting to caffeine-laden cups of coffee.
K – Kiss goodbye bad habits like smoking and drinking too much – they negate the nutritive value of food and contribute to bad health.
L – Love what’s on your plate – this way, you don’t avoid any food that’s good for you. Learn to love it because it adds to your health and helps you lose weight.


M - Make it a point to eat only at MEALTIMES; snacking between meals can cause you to overaeat or to fill up on unhealthy snacks instead of nutritious foods.

N - Choose foods that are high in NUTRITION that give you the nutrients your body needs.

O - OMIT high fat dairy products and substitute nonfat or lowfat versions

P - PASS on eating out very often -- eating at home is much healthier

Q - QUIT the red meat in your diet, opting instead for seafood, beans or poultry.

R - REGULARIZE your eating (keep to a schedule, and don't skip meals)

S - If you must snack, SNACK on healthy foods.

T - Take enough TIME to eat your meals -- rushing leads to overeating.

U - UNDO bad eating habits, such as snacking at every opportunity, keeping candy in your desk and dipping in too often, skipping breakfast, and so on.

V - Eat VEGETARIAN meals at least a couple of times a week -- it's not hard. Think pasta with red sauce or stir-fried Asian veggies with brown rice and soy sauce.

W - Realize that you have to WORK to maintain a healthy eating plan. Start by working in one good habit a week, and soon you'll have it all down.

X - Try not to make eXceptions to the rule of eating healthfully at every meal. If you slip up, start again at your very next meal!

Y - Keep food YEARNINGS at bay by not denying yourself foods you really love, even those that are not high on the healthy foodie chain. Just have a little bit.

Z - Wait at least an hour after eating before you get your ZZZZs; sleeping right after a meal can cause indigestion, heartburn, poor sleep and can contribute to becoming overweight.

11-Oct-2012, 11:38 PM
Hope for dementia patients

(IANS) / 10 October 2012

A protein deficiency may cause the early onset of dementia, researchers have found.

They say the results lay the foundation for therapies that one day may benefit those who suffer from the illness that wreak havoc on the brain, the Daily Mail reported Tuesday.

Using animal models, they found a protein deficiency may be linked to frontotemporal dementia -- a form of early-onset dementia that is similar to Alzheimer's disease.

FTD is a fatal disease that destroys cells, or neurons, that comprise the frontal and temporal lobes of the brain.

Early symptoms of FTD include personality changes, such as increased erratic or compulsive behaviour. Sufferers later experience difficulties speaking and reading, and often suffer from long-term memory loss.

The study, led by Robert Farese, a professor at the University of California, offers new hope in the fight against this and other related conditions.

Farese and his team showed how a protein called progranulin prevents a class of cells called microglia from becoming 'hyperactive'.

FTD is usually diagnosed between the ages of 40 and 65, with death occurring within two to 10 years after diagnosis. No drug exists to slow, halt or reverse its progression.

12-Oct-2012, 08:57 PM
Eat fruits and vegetables to stay happy

(IANS) / 12 October 2012

Eating at least eight portions of fruits and vegetables every day will keep you more cheerful and optimistic about the future, scientists say.The researchers analysed surveys involving 80,000 Britons, which included questions on their diet and general feelings, according the Daily Mail Thursday.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/health_12102012.jpgEach person was given a score between 0 and 10 based on their satisfaction with life.
The study found that those who ate around eight portions of fruit and vegetables a day had an average score that was one point higher than people who did not eat any.
The link remained even when people’s exercise levels and overall diet - both of which can influence mood - were accounted for.
Although it is not known exactly how fruit and vegetables improve wellbeing, they contain chemicals known as antioxidants, which are thought to reduce stress levels.
Recently studies have found that children who eat more fruit and vegetables are less at risk of depression in later life.
Andrew Oswald, of the Warwick University’s Department of Economics, which conducted the research, said: “This study has shown surprising results. We know that fruit and vegetables carry a lot of antioxidants and those protect us against attacks on the body.
“But how that works through into our minds and emotions, researchers have no idea.”

17-Oct-2012, 06:46 PM
Can a few cherries a day keep gout away?

(Reuters) / 14 October 2012

Cherries may no longer be for just topping off ice cream sundaes; in a new study of people with gout, eating the fruit was linked with a 35 percent to 75 percent lower risk of having an attack.While adopting a cherry regimen sounds pleasant enough, the study’s lead author warns that the new study does not prove cherries prevent gout attacks, and he said patients should stick with their current gout medications.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/cherry_1410212.jpg“They can go out and eat the cherries, but they shouldn’t abandon their medical treatment at all,” said Yuqing Zhang, a professor at the Boston University School of Medicine.
Gout arises when uric acid crystals build up in the joints. The body produces uric acid when it breaks down purines - substances found naturally in the body, but also in certain foods, like organ meats, anchovies, mushrooms and some seafood.
Anything that boosts the production of uric acid, or slows its clearance, also raises the risk of gout. Obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes and kidney disease are some examples.
Doctors have reported that some patients recommend cherries to prevent gout attacks, but the connection has only been studied a few times before, according to Zhang.
His group’s preliminary investigation, published in the journal Arthritis & Rheumatism, is just the first step in understanding the link between eating cherries and gout risk, he told Reuters Health.
For their study, Zhang and his colleagues recruited gout patients over the Internet to take online surveys about their attacks.
All the participants had had a gout attack in the last 12 months, had been diagnosed with gout by a doctor, lived in the U.S. and were at least 18 years old. They also had to release their medical records to the researchers.
For the next year, the gout patients filled out surveys every time they had an attack.
The survey asked questions about the symptoms, the drugs used to treat the attack and about certain risk factors, including what they had eaten.
The patients also took similar surveys at the beginning of the study, and every three months while it was underway.
Of the 633 gout patients enrolled in the study, 224 said they had eaten fresh cherries during the year, 15 said they had consumed cherry extract and 33 had both.
During the year, the researchers collected information on 1,247 gout attacks, which works out to about two per patient.
Overall, the researchers found that eating cherries over a given two-day period was linked to a 35 percent decrease in the risk of having a gout attack during that period, compared to not eating cherries.
Consuming cherry extract was tied to a 45 percent risk reduction, and eating both fresh cherries and extract was tied to a 37 percent lower risk.
The biggest risk reduction, however, came with eating fresh cherries while taking the anti-gout medication allopurinol (Lopurin, Zyloprim). That combination was linked to a 75 percent reduction in the risk of a gout attack.
There are a few possibilities for why these associations exist, researchers say. One is that vitamin C, which is found in cherries, can influence the amount of uric acid in a person’s blood, according to Dr. Allan Gelber, who co-wrote an editorial accompanying the study.
But Zhang said there are still a lot of questions to answer and more studies to be done, including a randomized controlled trial - considered the most rigorous way of demonstrating that a specific substance is responsible for an effect.
Gelber, an associate professor at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore, said the study also shows that a patient’s activities influence their risk of a gout attack - not just their medication.
“It educates the reader that he or she can do something in his or her daily behavior to diminish gout risk. The patient is in the driver’s seat,” he said.

22-Oct-2012, 08:35 PM
High-carb diets tend to raise Alzheimer’s risk

(IANS) / 22 October 2012

Seniors gorging on a carb rich diet are four times more likely to develop mild cognitive impairment—an early warning of Alzheimer’s disease, shows a new research.The research from the prestigious Mayo Clinic in America has found that risks are similar with a diet high in sugar. On the other hand, proteins and fats appear to offer some protection—people who consumed plenty of them are less likely to suffer cognitive decline.

Not everyone with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) develops Alzheimer’s disease, but many do, said Rosebud Roberts, professor of epidemiology at the Mayo Clinic, who led the study.

High-carb diets may play a role in the development of beta amyloid plaques, proteins found in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s, the Daily Mail reported.

MCI is defined as memory loss apparent to the individual and those around them, but with an absence of other dementia symptoms such as changes in personality and mood.

There are currently 800,000 people with dementia in Britain and 60,000 deaths a year are directly attributable to it, according to the Alzheimer’s Society. It’s estimated around six percent of us will develop MCI.

Previous research suggested that 10-15 percent of people with MCI went on to develop dementia every year the research results were followed up.

In community studies and clinical trials the rates are about half this level, but still represent a significantly increased level of risk.

That’s why it’s so important to identify people with MCI, as they may be in the very early stages of the disease and more likely to benefit from early treatment in the future.

Mayo Clinic research tracked 1,230 people aged between 70 to 89 years and asked them to provide information on what they ate the previous year. However, proteins and fats appear to offer some protection - those who consumed plenty of them were less likely to suffer cognitive decline.

22-Oct-2012, 09:41 PM
Exercise, exposure to sun keeps osteoporosis away

(IANS) / 20 October 2012

Working for long hours every night as a BPO employee, 35-year-old Aarti Thakur soon developed pain in her wrist and hips. She had developed Vitamin D deficiency due to lack of exposure to sunlight and her bones were beginning to turn brittle - signs of the onset of osteoporosis.Long hours of work at night coupled with not enough exposure to sunlight and unhealthy diet leads to early onset of osteoporosis.

In India, one in three women over the age of 50 suffer fractures due to osteoporosis, a condition where bones wear out and become weak. Drinking less milk, avoiding sunlight exposure, omitting exercises and unhealthy diet are a few reasons, say experts.

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/health_new_20102012.jpgOsteoporosis causes the bones to become fragile, increasing the chances of fracture and even minor injury. The symptoms of the ailment include back pain or tenderness, a loss of height, and a slight curvature or ‘hump’ of the upper back.

According to orthopaedicians, in India about 26 million people suffer from osteoporosis, of which 70 percent comprise women. This number is expected to reach 36 million by 2013.

”During menopause, the level of estrogen produced by the ovaries decreases significantly leading to an increased risk of bone loss. As women age estrogen levels decrease and the risk of osteoporosis increases. During childbirth women lose a lot of calcium that is often not replenished. So women between 45 to 50 who have irregular periods should start with calcium supplements,” Pankaj Walecha, senior consultant, orthopedics, Primus Super Speciality Hospital, said.

”Usually we see fractures in the wrist, hip and spine area,” Walecha said.

Ispita Gaur, 45, a MNC employee and mother of two, said she developed osteoporosis six months ago. She regrets that she had never exercised earlier.

”My work hours would extend beyond ten hours, and I never concentrated on my diet. I used to grab a burger and cold drink whenever I was hungry. On top of that I never made time for exercise, which has led me to this,” regrets Gaur.

Orthopedicians recommend weight-bearing activities such as walking, running, racket sports as these are more effective in maintaining the density of the leg and spinal bones.

”Regular exercise, for example a brisk walk of about 30 minutes everyday. Inclusion of more dairy products, egg white, salmon fish in diet would lower the risk of osteoporosis,” S Rajasekaran, president, Indian orthopaedic association said.

Apart from this doctors inform that many men and women in India keep away from sunlight - a good source of Vitamin D.

”Exposure to sunlight for at least 20 minutes every day is necessary. Drinking glass of milk rich in calcium lowers the chance of bone loss since calcium is one of the main components in bone; over 70 percent of women develop osteoporosis,” said Vineet Suri, senior consultant of neurology at Indraprastha Apollo Hospitals.

Osteoporosis also affects 40 percent of men who are regular smokers and who have a high intake of alcohol and caffeine.

”Adopting a healthy lifestyle with regular exercise and routine bone density checks after 40 years of age for women and 55 years for men will help them form a healthy bone mass and ensure fracture-free life,” Rajasekaran added.

09-Nov-2012, 11:13 PM
Multivitamins does not lower heart disease risk

(IANS) / 7 November 2012

The intake of daily multivitamins does not lower the risk of cardiovascular disease in men, says a new finding.The findings from our large clinical trial do not support the use of a common daily multivitamin supplement for the sole purpose of preventing cardiovascular disease in men,’ said Howard D. Sesso, associate epidemiologist in Preventive Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH).

‘The decision to take a daily multivitamin should be made in consultation with one’s doctor and consideration given to an individual’s nutritional status and other potential effects of multivitamins,’ said Sesso, the Journal of the American Medical Association reported.

Researchers enrolled nearly 15,000 men over 50 years and followed them for more than 10 years.

The men were randomly assigned to take either a multivitamin or a placebo (sugar pills) daily which ensured that both treatment groups were identical with respect to risk factors for cardiovascular disease.

They self-reported episodes of heart attacks, strokes and cardiovascular disease, and a panel of physicians reviewed and confirmed their events with medical records.

Researchers then compared the group that took the multivitamin with the group that took the placebo and found no significant impact on risk of heart attack, stroke, or cardiovascular mortality.

J. Michael Gaziano, chief of the Division of Aging at BWH and senior study author, said: ‘Studies like this are key to providing us with valuable information about what specific benefits multivitamins do or do not provide in terms of their long-term impact on chronic diseases.’

These findings were presented at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions 2012.

09-Nov-2012, 11:15 PM
Less is better, when it comes to salt

(IANS) / 5 November 2012

A simple measure that could go a long way in enhancing public health—limit salt intake to less than 1,500 mg or about three-fourths of a teaspoon each day—is the subject of an advisory to Americans.The American Heart Association (AHA) has issued an advisory based on a thorough review of recent lab, animal, observational and clinical studies. This advisory is meant not only for people with medical conditions, but also for perfectly healthy people.

A limited salt intake would significantly reduce the risk of high blood pressure (BP), heart disease and stroke.

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/salt_05112012.jpg‘Our recommendation is simple in the sense that it applies to the entire US population, not just at-risk groups,’ said Nancy Brown, AHA’s chief executive officer, the AHA journal Circulation reports.

BP affects more than 76 million adults in the US alone and one billion people worldwide, besides being a major cause of cardiovascular disease, globally, according to a Tulane University statement.

‘People should not be swayed by calls for a change in sodium (salt) intake recommendations based on findings from recent studies,’ says Paul K. Whelton, professor of global public health at the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, New Orleans, who led the study.

‘Our detailed review of these studies identified serious methodological weaknesses, which limit the value of these reports in setting or revising sodium intake policy,’ adds Whelton.

‘Our focus should be on finding effective ways to implement, not change, the existing American Heart Association policy on sodium intake,’ adds Whelton.

Yet, most US adults and children consume sodium far in excess of their physiological needs and guideline recommendations—with an average daily intake more than 3,400 mg per day.

Most of the sodium consumed is hidden in processed and prepared foods.

AHA advocates improved nutritional labelling of sodium content and stringent limits on sodium in all foods—fresh, processed and prepared.

10-Nov-2012, 02:33 AM
From 180 to 90kg

Asma Ali Zain / 8 November 2012

Tackling obesity is Dr Gabi Wazz. —Supplied photo

Emirati, Ahmed Al Shamsi, enjoys working out and makes it look so easy. He jabs, kicks, and lifts like a pro. But two years ago, none of this was possible.The young Emirati, then 25, weighed about 180kg (nearly 400 pounds). Now half that weight, Ahmed says friends and family barely recognise him.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/doc1b_08112012.jpgAhmed lost his flab after consulting Dr Gabi Wazz, a general surgeon at Dr Sulaiman Al Habib Medical Centre in Dubai.
Dr Wazz’ procedures — like gastric band or bypass operations — help patients shed pounds quickly. These days business here is up 600 per cent, says Dr Wazz probably because obesity in this nation is also on the rise.
The UAE is the fifth fattest nation in the world. Statistics point out that Qatar, Bahrain and the UAE may be some of the wealthiest nations in the world, but they have also become some of the most obese.
“My wedding was a few months ago. And I got people coming in to congratulate me, asking me where the groom was. I’m like, I’m the groom. No way, this is you, they asked?” explained Ahmed.
“I lost 90kg.”

CNN show timings

November 10, 9.30am and 11.30pm
November 11, 5.30pm
November 17, 5.30pm
November 18, 9-30am and 11:30pm

“Locals are shifting from their healthy way of living and eating to this modern life. Fast food, fast cars, not walking, not going to the gym ... genetically their bodies are not meant to have such a life,” explains Dr Wazz. More than half the Emiratis are overweight, according to recent statistics.
The problem with rapid modernisation and westernisation, say experts, is diabetes. Diets high in refined carbohydrates and sugar, like fast food, can lead to type-two diabetes in adults. One in five Emiratis now have the disease. It’s a recent problem, but one the government is trying to solve.
In Abu Dhabi, the government is trying to change habits among the youth. Children now have only healthy food options at schools. Calories are counted in a bid to end a growing epidemic.
“We’re very concerned because 35 per cent of the children suffer from obesity. And 50 per cent of them are at risk of developing type-two diabetes,” said Hanan Al Sahlawi from the Abu Dhabi Education Council.
Officials fear the economy could suffer, too. The UAE provides universal health care for its citizens, and costs for diabetes treatment could soar in the next decade. Doctors use international guidelines that define who gets bariatric surgery based on how obese they are. But other doctors worry that some are opting for an unnecessary and potentially risky procedure. “Some people think it’s an easy fix to a problem. They’re fed up of being overweight. Women, for example, come from a cosmetic point of view. Others from a health point of view. And they think that having a band, for example, which is the easiest type of bariatric surgery is a quick solution,” opines Dr Wael Abdulrahman Almahmeed, a cardiologist.
For Ahmed, it was quick but not easy. He’ll be on supplements the rest of his life. Still, he says bariatric surgery was worth the risk. “This is the only way out of obesity, I think. Because working out and dieting, someday you’ll gain,” said Ahmed.
The issue of obesity and bariatric surgery will also be covered by CNN’s November show ‘Inside the Middle East.’ Host Zain Verjee will visit Dubai to discover how increasing numbers of Emiratis are turning to stomach stapling surgery to shed their pounds before she travels to Kuwait where nearly 70 per cent of the men are overweight.

17-Nov-2012, 03:14 AM
People overestimate the benefits of prevention

(Reuters) / 16 November 2012

Patients asked to estimate how many lives would be saved through cancer screening or how many hip fractures can be prevented with bone-building medication mostly overestimate the benefits of these preventive measures, according to a New Zealand study.Several hundred patients were asked about the benefits of various cancer screenings and were surprised by how small the benefits actually were, according to findings that appeared in the Annals of Family Medicine.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/medicine_16112012.jpgDoctors, nurses and other medical professionals who communicate health information often don’t detail how much a given test or drug can help, but only say that people ought to have it, said Annette O’Connor at the University of Ottawa, who wasn’t a part of the study.
“I think it’s led to more people taking part in screening or availing themselves of preventive medication than would have been the case if they were presented the information in more meaningful terms,” said lead author Ben Hudson, a professor at the University of Otago in Christchurch, New Zealand.
“I would also be concerned that it’s led to people having over-heightened expectations of what these things can achieve, and that may lead to disappointment when the inevitable breast cancer happens despite screening.”
To get a broader sense of patients’ expectations, Hudson and his colleagues asked 354 people about the benefits of breast cancer screening with mammograms, bowel cancer screening with stool testing, taking antihypertension medication and taking bone-strengthening medication.
Specifically, participants were asked to imagine scenarios in which 5,000 people between the ages of 50 and 70 undergo one of these preventive interventions for 10 years, then asked how many “events’ they thought would be avoided as a result.
For three of the four interventions, the event to be avoided was death. In the case of the bone drugs, it was hip fracture.
For breast cancer screening, only seven percent of the participants answered in the correct range of one to five lives being saved with screening, whereas 80 percent overestimated how many lives would be saved. Fully a third thought that 1,000 deaths would be averted.
The numbers were similar for bowel cancer screening, which is thought to save 5 to 10 lives for every 5,000 people tested.
Eighty-two percent of participants overestimated the number of fractures prevented by bone-strengthening medication, which i ins reality is about 50 for every 5,000 patients. And 69 percent of participants reported that 500 or move lives would be saved if 5,000 people took blood pressure medication, when the correct range should have been 50 to 100.
Hudson said that one of the problems that can arise when people overvalue a test is if recommendations for testing are scaled back because of insufficient benefits, people get upset.
In 2009, for instance, when guidelines were changed on regular mammograms from beginning at age 40 to beginning at age 50, a survey of women at the time found that most of them considered the new guidelines to be “unsafe,” at least in part because they feared that insurers would no longer cover screening for women in their 40s who wanted it.
“The other thing that happens when you have an established screening program for which people have heightened expectations, it becomes very politically difficult to make any changes insofar as recommending reduced access, even when it is pretty convincing that the outcomes are better,” Hudson said.
“I have a feeling this would all be easier if we could present (patients) with this information, trust them with their decisions and support them in doing so,” he added.

17-Nov-2012, 03:15 AM
Walking, cycling may ease cancer-related fatigue

(Reuters) / 16 November 2012

People who have been treated for cancer often have lingering fatigue, but regular walking or cycling might help boost their energy, according to a UK study that looked at more than two thousand people.The long-lasting tiredness of cancer patients has been blamed both on the cancer itself, including cancer-related pain, and on the effects of treatments such as chemotherapy. Prior studies point to talk therapy, nutrition counseling and acupuncture as possible remedies.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/walking_16112012.jpgBut light-to-moderate exercise has the advantage of being something people can do on their own time, for little or no cost, said the researchers, whose findings appeared in The Cochrane Library.
“We’re not expecting people to go out and be running a mile the next day,” said Fiona Cramp, who worked on the analysis at the University of the West of England in Bristol.
“Some people will be well enough that they’re able to go for a jog or go for a bike ride, and if they can, that’s great. But we would encourage people to start with a low level.”
Cramp and her colleague James Byron-Daniel pooled findings from 38 studies that directly compared more than 2,600 people with cancer-related fatigue who did or didn’t go through an exercise program.
The majority of that research looked at women with breast cancer and the type of exercise program varied, from walking or biking to weight training or yoga. More than half of the studies included multiple exercises or allowed participants to choose their own type of physical activity.
The amount of prescribed exercise ranged from two times per week to daily workouts, lasting anywhere from ten minutes to two hours, depending on the study.
When they combined the results, the researchers found physical activity both during and after cancer treatment was tied to improved energy. In particular, aerobic exercise such as walking and cycling tended to reduce fatigue more than resistance training.
“What we do know is there will be an appreciable difference; the average patient will get a benefit from physical activity,” Cramp said, though the actual benefit will vary.
For example, there were exercise-related benefits for people with breast cancer and prostate cancer, although not for those with leukemia and lymphoma.
“Some of the hematologic patients may not have the reserves to always tolerate the aerobic exercise,” said Carol Enderlin, who has studied fatigue and cancer at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences in Little Rock.
“They do not always have the oxygen carrying capacity, for instance,” because the disease and treatment affect blood cell counts. For those people, non-aerobic exercise or exercise at a lower does may be a better option, added Enderlin, who was not part of the research team. SOURCE: http://bit.ly/TMV6SC (Reporting by Elaine Lies) REUTERS

17-Nov-2012, 03:23 AM
good thread(clap)

20-Nov-2012, 08:58 PM
Diabetes cases hit record and half go undiagnosed

(Reuters) / 19 November 2012

Diabetes is running at record levels worldwide and half the people estimated to have the disease are, as yet, undiagnosed, according to a report.The number of people living with diabetes is now put at 371 million, up from 366 million a year ago, with numbers expected to reach 552 million by 2030, the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) said.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/dia_19112012.jpgDiabetes is often viewed as a western problem, since the vast majority of people have type 2 disease which is linked to obesity and lack of exercise.
But the disease is also spreading rapidly in poorer countries, alongside urbanization, and four out of five diabetics now live in low and middle-income countries, opening up new opportunities and challenges for the drug industry.

China alone has 92.3 million people with diabetes, more than any other nation in the world, and the hidden burden is also enormous in sub-Saharan Africa where limited healthcare means less than a fifth of cases get diagnosed.
The IDF estimates that, globally, 187 million people do not yet know they are suffering from the condition.
Diabetics have inadequate blood sugar control which can lead to serious complications, including nerve and kidney damage and blindness. Worldwide deaths from the disease are running at 4.8 million a year.
The disease is one of a number of chronic conditions - along with cancer, cardiovascular and respiratory diseases - that healthcare campaigners want included in the next set of global development goals, which will replace outgoing Millennium Developments Goals in 2015.
For the international drug-makers, diabetes offers riches, with global sales of diabetes medicines expected to reach $48-$53 billion by 2016, up from $39.2 billion in 2011, according to research firm IMS Health.

Tapping into the potential of increased demand in emerging markets, however, requires a twin-track approach from drug companies which have traditionally focused on pricey new therapies for rich-world markets.
These days, there is a lot more focus on high-volume but lower-margin business in developing economies, many of which are predicted to show high double-digit percentage sales growth for diabetes medicines for years to come.
The shift is already yielding results.
China, for example, is now the second-largest market behind the United States for the world’s biggest maker of insulin - Danish group Novo Nordisk. It is also a major focus for rivals such as Eli Lilly, Merck & Co , and Sanofi.

Poorer countries are more difficult, especially when it comes to insulin, which must be kept cool if it is not to deteriorate. While most patients start on cheap generic diabetes pills, such as metformin, many need insulin as their disease progresses.
Still, Novo Nordisk thinks it has cracked part of the problem in Kenya, where a project using churches and other local groups has reduced the number of middlemen in the supply chain and cut the cost of a month’s supply of insulin to around 500 Kenyan shillings.
So far, the project only covers around 1,000 Kenyans but Jesper Hoiland, Novo’s head of international operations, is confident his company’s low-price model will become profitable as it increases in scale. “It will take three to five years to get to breakeven,” he said in an interview.
In the meantime, similar pilot schemes are being tested in rural India and Nigeria.
Other major drug-makers like Sanofi, which has a significant presence in Africa, are also adopting “tiered” or differential pricing to open up developing world markets.

20-Nov-2012, 09:08 PM
Boosting Brain Power -- With Chocolate ScienceDaily (Feb. 22, 2007) — Eating chocolate could help to sharpen up the mind and give a short-term boost to cognitive skills, a University of Nottingham expert has found.

A study led by Professor Ian Macdonald found that consumption of a cocoa drink rich in flavanols — a key ingredient of dark chocolate — boosts blood flow to key areas of the brain for two to three hours.

Increased blood flow to these areas of the brain may help to increase performance in specific tasks and boost general alertness over a short period.
The findings, unveiled at one of the biggest scientific conferences in America, also raise the prospect of ingredients in chocolate being used to treat vascular impairment, including dementia and strokes, and thus for maintaining cardiovascular health.
The study also suggests that the cocoa flavanols found in chocolate could be useful in enhancing brain function for people fighting fatigue, sleep deprivation, and even the effects of ageing.

Ian Macdonald, professor of metabolic physiology at The University of Nottingham, used magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to detect increased activity in specific areas of the brain in individuals who had consumed a single drink of flavanol-rich cocoa. The effect is linked to dilation of cerebral blood vessels, allowing more blood — and therefore more oxygen — to reach key areas of the brain.
Flavanols are not only found in chocolate with a high cocoa content — they are also present in other substances such as red wine, green tea and blueberries.
He presented his research at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), one of the biggest annual gatherings of scientists from all over the world. This year's meeting takes place in San Francisco from February 15–19.
Professor Macdonald said: “Acute consumption of this particular flavanol-rich cocoa beverage was associated with increased grey matter flow for two to three hours.
“The demonstration of an effect of consuming this particular beverage on cerebral blood flow raises the possibility that certain food ingredients may be beneficial in increasing brain blood flow and enhancing brain function, in situations where individuals are cognitively impaired such as fatigue, sleep deprivation, or possibly ageing.”
He emphasised that the level of cocoa flavanol used in the study is not available commercially. The cocoa-rich flavanol beverage was specially formulated for the purpose of the study.
Co-authors on the research were Dr Susan Francis, research associate Kay Head, and Professor Peter Morris, all from The University of Nottingham's School of Physics and Astronomy.
Professor Macdonald is a member of the Food Standards Agency's Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition, and is President-Elect of the UK Nutrition Society. His main research interests are concerned with the functional consequences of metabolic and nutritional disturbances in health and disease, with specific interests in obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and exercise.
The AAAS, founded in 1848, is the world's largest general scientific society and publisher of the prestigious international journal Science. Its annual conference draws up to 10,000 attendees.

21-Nov-2012, 05:51 PM
It's the proper way to clean your hands. hospital staff do this steps before performing operation.

21-Nov-2012, 05:57 PM


and repeat the above instructions..:P

21-Nov-2012, 06:04 PM


and repeat the above instructions..:P

:lol: yani daagh to achey hotey hain

24-Nov-2012, 05:03 PM
Red bull= slow death

http://rense.com/1.imagesG/newlog_o.gif Red Bull Drink = Slow Death?
From Helmi
10-12-9 http://rense.com/general88/image001%2013.jpg
France & Denmark have banned it from the country...
RED BULL - slow death ...

Do NOT drink this drink anymore!

Pay attention...read everything...

As a public health safety, please pass on this email to all the contacts in your address book especially those with teenage children.

This drink is SOLD in all the supermarkets IN OUR country and our children ARE CONSUMING IT ON A TRIAL BASIS. IT can be FATAL.

RED BULL was created to stimulate the brains in people who are subjected to great physical force and in stress coma and never to be consumed like an innocent drink or soda pop.

RED BULL IS the energizer DRINK that is commercialized world-wide with its slogan: "It increases endurance, awakens the concentration capacity and the speed of reaction, offers more energy and improves the mood. All this can be found in a can of RED BULL, the power drink of the millennium.

" RED BULL has managed to arrive in almost 100 countries worldwide. The RED BULL logo is targeted at young people and sportsmen, two attractive segments that have been captivated by the stimulus that the drink provides.

It was created by Dietrich Mateschitz, an industrialist of Austrian origin who discovered the drink by chance. It happened during a business trip to Hong Kong , when he was working at a factory that manufactured toothbrushes.

The liquid, based on a formula that contained caffeine and taurine, caused a rage in that country. Imagine the grand success of this drink in Europe where the product still did not exist, besides it was a superb opportunity to become an entrepreneur.

BUT THE TRUTH ABOUT THIS DRINK IS ANOTHER THING FRANCE and DENMARK have just prohibited it as a cocktail of death, due to its vitamin components mixed with GLUCURONOLACTONE ' - a highly-dangerous chemical, which was developed by the United States Department of Defense during the sixties to stimulate the moral of the troops based in VIETNAM, which acted like a hallucinogenic drug that calmed the stress of the war.

But their effects in the organism were so devastating, that it was discontinued, because of the high index of cases of migraines, cerebral tumors and diseases of the liver that was evident in the soldiers who consumed it.

And in spite of it, in the can of RED BULL you can still find as one of its components: GLUCURONOLACTONE, categorized medically as a stimulant. But what it does not say on the can of RED BULL are the consequences of its consumption, and that has forced a series of WARNINGS...

1. It is dangerous to take it if you do not engage in physical exercise afterwards, since its energizing function accelerates the heart rate and can cause a sudden attack.

2. You run the risk of undergoing a cerebral hemorrhage, because RED BULL contains components that dilute the blood so that the heart utilizes less energy to pump the blood, and thus be able to deliver physical force with less effort being exerted.

3. It is prohibited to mix RED BULL with alcohol, because the mixture turns the drink into a " Deadly Bomb " that attacks the liver directly, causing the affected area never to regenerate anymore.

4. One of the main components of RED BULL is the B12 vitamin, used in medicine to recover patients who are in a coma ; from here the hypertension and the state of excitement which is experienced after taking it, as if you were in a drunken state.

5. The regular consumption of RED BULL triggers off symptoms in the form of a series of irreversible nervous and neuronal diseases.

CONCLUSION: It is a drink that should be prohibited in the entire world as when it is mixed with alcohol it creates a TIME BOMB for the human body, mainly between innocent adolescents and adults with little experience. Forward this mail to Everyone and Let them know about this..Disclaimer (http://rense.com/disclaimer.htm)

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28-Nov-2012, 03:10 PM

28-Nov-2012, 04:03 PM
It seems we are eating "lipstic, soap, shampo)

28-Nov-2012, 04:06 PM
But for married persons it is not a big deal because they are already habitual to eat these things (married persons know how)

28-Nov-2012, 04:14 PM
But for married persons it is not a big deal because they are already habitual to eat these things (married persons know how)

tabhi main kahoon shadi k baad banda down hona kyun shuru ho jata hai [hilar]

28-Nov-2012, 06:48 PM
Reading, writing keep ageing brains healthy
(IANS) / 27 November 2012

Reading and writing can preserve brains of older people and insure them against deterioration as they age, says a new study.Konstantinos Arfanakis and colleagues from Rush University Medical Centre and Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago, examined the effect of late-life cognitive activity on the brain’s white matter, composed of nerve fibres, or axons, that transmit information through the brain.

Previous research, unlike that of Arfanakis, had linked late-life cognitive activity with better mental sharpness, according to a statement from Rush University and Illinois Institute.

‘Reading the newspaper, writing letters, visiting a library, attending a play or playing games, such chess or checkers, are all simple activities that can contribute to a healthier brain,’ Arfanakis said.

The researchers used a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) method known as DTI to generate data on diffusion anisotropy, a measure of how water molecules move through the brain. These values in white matter drop with aging, injury and disease.

The study included 152 elderly participants with an average age of 81 years, from the Rush Memory and Aging Project, a large-scale study looking at risk factors for Alzheimer’s disease. They were without dementia or mild cognitive impairment, based on a detailed clinical evaluation.

Researchers asked them to rate on a scale of one to 5 the frequency with which they participated in a list of mentally engaging activities during last year, such as reading newspapers and magazines, writing letters and playing cards and board games.

Data analysis revealed significant associations between the frequency of cognitive activity in later life and higher water molecule diffusion in the brain.

These findings were presented at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) in Chicago in the US.

28-Nov-2012, 06:49 PM

Dangers of mixing grapefruit with drugs rises

(AFP) / 27 November 2012

OTTAWA — The number of drugs when mixed with grapefruit that can lead to serious health problems, including sudden death, has skyrocketed, warns a Canadian researcher who first discovered the toxic link.In an article in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, David Bailey, a scientist at the Lawson Health Research Institute in London, Ontario, said more than 85 drugs, many of them highly prescribed for common medical conditions, are known to interact with the pink fruit.
He first made the link 20 years ago.
But the number of medications with the potential to interact with grapefruit and cause serious adverse health effects has jumped from 17 to 43 in the last four years, as new drugs have been rolled out, Bailey said.
“How big a problem are such interactions? Unless health care professionals are aware of the possibility that the adverse event they are seeing might have an origin in the recent addition of grapefruit to the patient’s diet, it is very unlikely that they will investigate it,” Bailey said.
Generally patients don’t say they eat grapefruit and doctors don’t ask, he lamented in the article.
Grapefruit poses a risk when mixed with certain drugs because it inhibits an enzyme that metabolizes ingested drugs, resulting in the drugs entering the bloodstream at full force, which can lead to overdosing.
Some of the drugs known to interact with grapefruit include anti-cancer agents, heart drugs, pain medications and drugs to treat schizophrenia. All of them are administered orally.
It doesn’t take much grapefruit to have an effect. Drinking a single glass of grapefruit juice with medication can lead to serious side effects, including gastrointestinal bleeding, kidney failure, breathing problems and sudden death.
Other citrus fruits such as Seville oranges and limes can have similar effects. But they have been studied less.

28-Nov-2012, 06:51 PM
Soy unlikely to help hot flashes

(Reuters) / 28 November 2012

Women who eat a lot of soy-based foods or fiber don’t seem to have fewer menopause symptoms, according to a US study - the latest research to find no benefits from eating extra amounts of soy, a food abundant in dietary estrogen.Hormone replacement therapy, based on estrogen and other hormones, is effective in reducing hot flashes and other menopause symptoms, but carries some risks of heart disease and cancer. Researchers have been testing whether plant estrogens can offer benefits, perhaps without the risks.
‘Many women can’t or don’t want to take hormones,’ making dietary estrogen an appealing alternative, said Ellen Gold, the lead author of the study and a professor at the University of California Davis School of Medicine.
But studies on plant estrogens have been mixed.
A review of 17 studies on soy supplements has found that the pills can reduce the frequency and severity of hot flashes, but some individual trials on soy protein pills have found no benefits.
‘It might be a dead end,’ said William Wong, a professor at Baylor College of Medicine who has studied the effects of soy protein on menopause symptoms but was not part of the study.
To see if women who choose to eat more phytoestrogens have an easier time through menopause, Gold and her colleagues tracked 1,651 women for 10 years. At the beginning of the study, none of the women had gone through menopause.
Each year the researchers, whose findings appeared in the journal Menopause, followed up with them to gather any reports of hot flashes or night sweats, and every few years the women filled out a food survey.
By the end of the study, Gold’s team could find no consistent pattern between the amount of phytoestrogens eaten and how often or how severely women experienced hot flashes and night sweats.
The same was true for how much fiber the women ate.
In some cases, the researchers did see a relationship between one type of dietary estrogen and menopause symptoms, but it didn’t always carry through when they examined women of different ethnicities or looked at different points in time. But those apparent results may simply have been due to chance, they wrote.
Gold said it’s possible that for some subsets of women, plant estrogens might have a benefit, but they weren’t able to tease that out in this study.
‘I think the more promising avenue for us in the future is to see if there are some women who might benefit,’ she told Reuters Health.
Wong is less optimistic, because of the negative results seen in long-term studies of women taking soy protein supplements.
‘After looking at our own clinical trial data and others, we don’t see it,’ he told Reuters Health. ‘I think we should move on.’ SOURCE: http://bit.ly/Uq77iV

28-Nov-2012, 06:57 PM
Soft drink raises risk of prostate cancer

(IANS) / 28 November 2012

Men who drink fizzy drinks are not just ruining their teeth but could also be at risk of aggressive prostate cancer, the Daily Mail reported Tuesday.A Swedish study has found just one soft drink a day could increase the risk of developing more serious forms of the cancer by 40 percent.

Experts at Lund University also found those who ate a carbohydrate diet heavy in rice and pasta increased their risk of getting milder forms of prostate cancer, which often required no treatment, by 31 percent.

And eating lots of sugary breakfast cereals raised the incidence of milder forms of the cancer to 38 percent

Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer in men after lung disease.

The study examined more than 8,000 men aged between 45 and73 for an average of 15 years.

28-Nov-2012, 07:23 PM
http://www.scientificamerican.com/assets/img/logo_main_final.png (http://www.scientificamerican.com/)
Permanent Address: http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=food-additives-mimic-hormones
Some Food Additives Mimic Human Hormones (http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=food-additives-mimic-hormones&print=true)New research reveals that some common food additives behave like estrogen in the body
By Jessica A. Knoblauch (http://www.scientificamerican.com/author.cfm?id=1970) and Environmental Health News (http://www.scientificamerican.com/author.cfm?id=1887) | Friday, March 27, 2009 | 6 (http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=food-additives-mimic-hormones&print=true#comments)

http://www.scientificamerican.com/media/inline/food-additives-mimic-hormones_1.jpgFISHY LOBSTER? Some food additives that help to keep lobster and other shellfish looking fresh might be changing human hormones.Image: FLICKR/IAW KEVEN

A discovery that two commonly used food additives are estrogenic has led scientists to suspect that many ingredients added to the food supply may be capable of altering hormones (http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=milk-industry-gag-order-on-artificial-hormones-lifted).

More than 3,000 preservatives, flavorings, colors and other ingredients are added to food in the United States, and none of them are required to undergo testing for estrogenic activity, according to the Food and Drug Administration.

“We need to be mindful of these food additives because they could be adding to the total effect of other estrogen mimicking compounds (http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=is-there-any-conclusive-r) we're coming into contact with,” said Clair Hicks, a professor of food science at the University of Kentucky and spokesperson for the Institute of Food Technologists, a nonprofit scientific group.

“The benefits of using these additives in food need to be weighed against the risks they present,” Hicks said.

In a study published in December, Italian researchers screened 1,500 food additives using computer-modeling software, a much faster and cheaper approach than testing lab rats.

The researchers first used modeling to identify 13 molecules that could hypothetically bind with an estrogen receptor, a group of molecules activated by the hormone. Like a clenched fist that fits into the palm of a hand, potentially estrogenic molecules will “fit” inside the receptor, indicating they could interact and alter hormones.

Then, the researchers exposed cells to the 13 food additives, which confirmed that two have estrogen-mimicking properties. Known as “xenoestrogens,” these substances have been linked to reproductive problems in animals and perhaps humans.

The first food additive (http://www.scientificamerican.com/blog/60-second-science/post.cfm?id=food-additive-may-up-lung-cancer-ri-2008-12-30), propyl gallate, is a preservative used to prevent fats and oils from spoiling that can be found in a range of foods including baked goods, shortening, dried meats, candy, fresh pork sausage, mayonnaise and dried milk.

The second additive, 4-hexyl resorcinol, is used to prevent shrimp, lobsters, and other shellfish from discoloring.

“Some caution should be issued for the use of these two additives,” said Pietro Cozzini, one of the researchers who conducted the study and a chemistry professor at the University of Parma in Italy.

He added that further tests on rats are necessary to determine whether these additives could harm humans.

Paul Foster, whose research focuses on the potential human health effects of endocrine disruptors (http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=new-website-maps-endocrine-disruptors), agreed. He said there is a big difference between adding estrogenic molecules to cells in a culture dish and actually seeing what happens when that dose is administered to an animal.

“There are a lot of compounds that give quite strong responses in a culture dish that really don’t produce any effects on lab rats,” said Foster, who is deputy director of the National Toxicology Program's Center for the Evaluation of Risks to Human Reproduction, which is part of the National Institutes of Health.

The major concern, Foster said, is what happens when people are exposed to mixtures of these estrogenic compounds.

“There are examples where you can take dose levels of compounds on their own that won’t produce an effect, but when you put these compounds together, you may get something different,” he said.

However, Foster said people should keep in mind that they already ingest significant numbers of fairly potent estrogens in their diets by consuming foods like tofu and milk, so findings like these shouldn’t necessarily scare people until more research has been conducted.

“It’s clear that humans are exposed to a mixture of these estrogenic compounds,” Foster said. “But you have to try to balance out what might already be present in your diet or your lifestyle with these things that might be coming from some other sources,” such as food additives.

Systems like the one used by the Italian researchers are useful for screening potentially estrogenic additives, Foster said, adding that it’s a “good first step” towards identifying these compounds.

Of the estimated 3,000 additives used in the United States to preserve foods or improve their taste (http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=magnifying-taste) and appearance, only about 2,000 have detailed toxicological information available, according to the FDA.

"Our results are part of a bigger, more important problem, which is that there could be other additives used in foods that could have estrogenic activity," Cozzini said.

Globally, the market for additives is expected to reach more than $33 billion by 2012. There are five main reasons that companies add compounds to food: to emulsify, to preserve, to add nutritional content, to add flavor or color and to balance alkalinity and acids.

"With some 3,000 compounds being used in food formulations there may be other additives with estrogenic properties that come to light with these types of studies," Hicks said.

Using the traditional animal testing system, “it would be impossible to test all of the additives in a short time,” Cozzini said. “Every day we discover new molecules, and we must continue to identify new ways to study them.”

Propyl gallate is considered “Generally Recognized As Safe” (GRAS) by the FDA, a title given to food additives that don’t require approval because they have a proven track record based on either a history of use before 1958 or on published scientific evidence. Examples of other GRAS substances include salt, sugar, spices and vitamins.

The other estrogenic one, 4-hexyl resorcinol, which is used on raw shelled seafood to inhibit melanosis, or black spots, was petitioned in 1990 for GRAS status. Its status is still pending, according to Michael Herndon, an FDA press officer.

The FDA’s lack of testing for estrogenic compounds doesn’t stop at additives. In 2008, an independent advisory board said the FDA ignored critical evidence concerning another estrogenic compound, bisphenol A, a plasticizing chemical found in polycarbonate baby bottles and the linings of metal foods cans.

“What we’ve seen with the FDA’s handling of BPA (http://www.scientificamerican.com/podcast/episode.cfm?id=is-bpa-bad-for-you-08-10-23) is that it’s had its head in the sand,” said Renee Sharp, director of the Environmental Working Group’s California office. “If you look at its assessments, what you see is that it has consistently ignored independent science and consistently used outdated methods in its assessments.”

As concern about the cumulative impacts of these chemicals grows among the scientific community, some studies are suggesting that the effects of these compounds could extend to future generations.

For example, investigators at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences have found that adverse effects can be seen in both the granddaughters and grandsons of mice who were developmentally exposed to diethylstilbestrol (DES), a synthetic form of estrogen that caused reproductive problems in pregnant women and their fetuses. While DES was taken off the market in 1971, there are many other compounds that have similar, estrogenic effects.

“This study is the flagship of estrogen mimickers and why we worry about them,” said Shanna Swan, director of the University of Rochester's Center for Reproductive Epidemiology and a leading expert on reproductive effects of environmental exposures. “The fact that these chemicals can effect future generations has been a huge lesson for the science community.”

Other research has found that low doses of these chemicals can cause significant changes in those exposed to them and their developing offspring. One recent study published in Environmental Health Perspectives (http://www.ehponline.org/) found that when rats are exposed to low levels of BPA during lactation, their offspring had an increased chance of breast cancer.

As the evidence that synthetic estrogens may pose a health risk mounts, researchers are uncovering these compounds in new places.

Earlier this month, researchers in Germany found traces of an unknown estrogenic substance leaching into mineral water stored in polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles, a commonly used plastic for storing foods and beverages.

The study is the first to find that these containers are leaching synthetic estrogens.

“We already knew that BPA was leaching from polycarbonate baby bottles (http://www.scientificamerican.com/blog/60-second-science/post.cfm?id=companies-voluntarily-banish-bpa-fr-2009-03-06), so we decided to test bottles of mineral water to see if there was any estrogenic activity,” said Martin Wagner, a PhD student in aquatic toxicology at Johann Wolfgang Goethe University in Frankfurt.

The scientists tested 20 brands of mineral water and found that 60 percent of the samples tested positive, with estrogenic activity in plastic bottles appearing twice as high as compared to activity in water from glass bottles.

In addition, the researchers found that mud snails placed inside the bottles filled with fresh water experienced reproduction rates double of control snails, which suggests that substances from the packaging, and not the water itself, caused the reproductive change.

“The results show that these leached chemicals are important enough to change reproduction in only eight weeks,” Martin said.

Further testing is needed to identify the source of the estrogenic activity, but Wagner said the study’s significance is that it shows people are exposed to more environmental endocrine disruptors than what was previously thought.

“We’re dealing with this chemical mixture, a cocktail effect, and I would say that if you look at a single compound then you might underestimate the exposure to these environmental estrogens,” he said.

Ralph Vasami, executive director of a plastics industry group, the PET Resin Association, said ongoing research on the safety of PET for the past three decades has revealed no safety issues or reasons for concern.

"PET has been proven through considerable research to be a safe packaging material for water and other food and beverage items,” he said. “The PET industry stands on its record of safety and reliability as a packaging material.”

Swan said that the studies reinforce the need for precautionary action when dealing with these types of chemicals, such as avoiding plastic products whenever possible to decrease exposure.
“If you’re taking several hits of something, even if it’s safe at a low dose, it’s going to add up,” Swan said.

This article originally ran at Environmental Health News (http://www.environmentalhealthnews.org/ehs), a news source published by Environmental Health Sciences, a nonprofit media company.


30-Nov-2012, 09:04 PM
Stem cell discovery may revive damaged heart
(IANS) / 29 November 2012

A new discovery that tricks aging stem cells into rejuvenating mode could enable scientists to create youthful patches for damaged or diseased hearts and heal them, according to a Canadian study.The breakthrough may enable scientists to create such life giving patches from a patient’s own stem cells - regardless of the patient’s age - while avoiding the threat of rejection, the study claims.

Stem cell therapies involving donated bone marrow stem cells run the risk of patient rejection in a portion of the population, argues Milica Radisic, associate professor of chemical engineering and applied chemistry at the University of Toronto, the Journal of the American College of Cardiology reports.

One method of avoiding such a risk has been to use cells derived from a patient’s own body. But until now, clinical trials of this kind of therapy using elderly patients’ own cells have not been a viable option, since aged cells tend not to function as well as cells from young patients, according to a Toronto statement.

‘If you want to treat these people with their own cells, how do you do this?’ asks Radisic. It’s a problem that Radisic and co-researcher Ren-Ke Li think they might have an answer for: by creating the conditions for a ‘fountain of youth’ reaction within a tissue culture. Li is a professor in the division of cardiovascular surgery.

Radisic and Li first create a ‘micro-environment’ that allows heart tissue to grow, with stem cells donated from elderly patients at the Toronto General Hospital, where Li works.

Li and his team then tracked the molecular changes in the tissue patch cells. ‘We saw certain aging factors turned off,’ states Li, citing the levels of two molecules in particular, p16 and (regucalcin) RGN, which effectively turned back the clock in the cells, returning them to robust and states.

‘It’s very exciting research,’ says Radisic, who was named one of the top innovators under 35 by MIT in 2008 and winner of the 2012 Young Engineers Canada award.

03-Dec-2012, 07:18 PM
Tap water chemicals could be giving you food allergies

(IANS) / 3 December 2012

Food allergies are rearing their head worldwide because of pesticides and chemicals in tap water, says an immunological research.The study reported that high levels of dichlorophenols, a chemical used in pesticides and to chlorinate water, are tied to food allergies when found in the human body.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/tapwater_031220012.jpgSymptoms can range from a mild rash to a life-threatening reaction known as anaphylaxis.
“Our research shows that high levels of dichlorophenol-containing pesticides can possibly weaken food tolerance in some people, causing food allergy,” said study lead Elina Jerschow, assistant professor of medicine (allergy and immunology), Albert Einstein College of Medicine.
“This chemical is commonly found in pesticides used by farmers and consumer insect and weed control products, as well as tap water,” added Jerschow, the journal Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology reports.
A US National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey 2005-2006, involving 10,348 people, found that 2,548 had dichlorophenols measured in their urine and 2,211 were included into the study.
Food allergy was found in 411 of these participants, while 1,016 had an environmental allergy, according to an Albert Einstein statement.
Opting for bottled water instead of tap water might seem to be a way to reduce the risk for developing an allergy, according to the study such a change may not be successful.
“Other dichlorophenol sources, such as pesticide-treated fruits and vegetables, may play a greater role in causing food allergy,” said Jerschow.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, an increase in food allergy of 18 percent was seen from 1997-2007. The most common food allergens are milk, eggs, peanuts, wheat, tree nuts, soy, fish, and shellfish.

18-Dec-2012, 02:30 AM
Climbing stairs serially burns more calories

(IANS) / 17 December 2012

Climbing one step at a time burns more calories than leaping up several stairs, according to scientists from the University of Roehampton.They found climbing five flights of stairs five times a week—an ascent of around 15 metres—burnt an average of 302 calories if the stairs were taken one at a time.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/stair_1712012.jpgBut taking two steps with every stride will only burn 260 calories, they say.
Lewis Halsey, senior lecturer in comparative and environmental physiology at the university, said: “We were really interested to find out what expended more energy overall—attacking the stairs two at a time and climbing them quickly, or taking them more sedately one step at a time and reaching the top more slowly,” the Daily Mail reports.
“Our study reported the calories burned ascending stairs, the potential weight loss value of climbing stairs if done regularly and frequently during the week, and also the different energy costs of ascending stairs one step at a time versus two steps at a time.
“And our conclusion: it is better to take the stairs one at a time, if you want to burn the most calories.”
He added that the greater total energy expenditure of one-step ascents must be partly explained by the fact it takes longer.
But there might be a bio-mechanical explanation too.
Taking the stairs one at a time may result in faster rates of muscle shortening, which increases energy turnover.
Previous research from the University of Ulster found office workers who began regularly climbing stairs quickly improved their fitness.
Researchers divided office workers into two groups. One climbed staircases located within an eight-storey office block, consisting of 145 steps. They began by climbing the stairs once a day and gradually built up to three over the following five weeks.
The average speed they climbed was 75 steps a minute.
At the end of the trial, the stairclimbing group showed a significant 10 percent increase in a reading called predicted VO2 max.
This is measured using your pulse—the time interval between your heartbeats is used to find out how well your body takes up and uses oxygen.

18-Dec-2012, 02:32 AM
Aerobic exercise makes brain smarter

(IANS) / 15 December 2012

The physical benefits of regular exercise are well documented. Now researchers in a New Zealand university say that people who routinely perform aerobic exercises are also smarter than those who do not.Hayley Guiney and Liana Machado from the University of Otago, New Zealand unearthed evidence that highlights the importance of physical activity and its role in improving cognitive function throughout life.

A certain amount of mental deterioration is expected with advancing age. But aerobic exercise benefits cognitive function such as switching between tasks, and selective attention and working memory, the journal Psychonomic Bulletin & Review reports.

Review of studies by researchers consistently found that fitter individuals scored better in mental tests than their unfit peers.

Scores in mental tests also improved among those who were assigned to an aerobic exercise regimen, compared to those told to do stretch and tone classes, according to an Otago statement.

Both the updating of working memory and the volume of information which could be held was better in fitter individuals or those who followed an aerobic exercise regime.

18-Dec-2012, 03:42 AM
December 12, 2012, 12:01 amWhy Afternoon May Be the Best Time to Exercise By GRETCHEN REYNOLDS (http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/author/gretchen-reynolds/)http://graphics8.nytimes.com/images/2012/12/12/health/12well_physed/12well_physed-tmagArticle.jpg
Getty Images

Gretchen Reynolds on the science of fitness.

Does exercise influence the body’s internal clock? Few of us may be conscious of it, but our bodies, and in turn our health, are ruled by rhythms. “The heart, the liver, the brain — all are controlled by an endogenous circadian rhythm,” says Christopher Colwell, a professor of psychiatry at the University of California, Los Angeles’s Brain Research Institute, who led a series of new experiments on how exercise affects the body’s internal clock. The studies were conducted in mice, but the findings suggest that exercise does affect our circadian rhythms, and the effect may be most beneficial if the exercise is undertaken midday.
For the study, which appears in the December Journal of Physiology (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22988135), the researchers gathered several types of mice. Most of the animals were young and healthy. But some had been bred to have a malfunctioning internal clock, or pacemaker, which involves, among other body parts, a cluster of cells inside the brain “whose job it is to tell the time of day,” Dr. Colwell says.
These pacemaker cells receive signals from light sources or darkness that set off a cascade of molecular effects. Certain genes fire, expressing proteins, which are released into the body, where they migrate to the heart, neurons, liver and elsewhere, choreographing those organs to pulse in tune with the rest of the body. We sleep, wake and function physiologically according to the dictates of our body’s internal clock.
But, Dr. Colwell says, that clock can become discombobulated. It is easily confused, for instance, by viewing artificial light in the evening, he says, when the internal clock expects darkness. Aging also worsens the clock’s functioning, he says. “By middle age, most of us start to have trouble falling asleep and staying asleep,” he says. “Then we have trouble staying awake the next day.”
The consequences of clock disruptions extend beyond sleepiness. Recent research has linked out-of-sync circadian rhythm in people to an increased risk for diabetes, obesity, certain types of cancer, memory loss and mood disorders, including depression.
“We believe there are serious potential health consequences” to problems with circadian rhythm, Dr. Colwell says. Which is why he and his colleagues set out to determine whether exercise, which is so potent physiologically, might “fix” a broken clock, and if so, whether exercising in the morning or later in the day is more effective in terms of regulating circadian rhythm.
They began by letting healthy mice run, an activity the animals enjoy. Some of the mice ran whenever they wanted. Others were given access to running wheels only in the early portion of their waking time (mice are active at night) or in the later stages, the equivalent of the afternoon for us.
After several weeks of running, the exercising mice, no matter when they ran, were found to be producing more proteins in their internal-clock cells than the sedentary animals. But the difference was slight in these healthy animals, which all had normal circadian rhythms to start with.
So the scientists turned to mice unable to produce a critical internal clock protein. Signals from these animals’ internal clocks rarely reach the rest of the body.
But after several weeks of running, the animals’ internal clocks were sturdier. Messages now traveled to these animals’ hearts and livers far more frequently than in their sedentary counterparts.
The beneficial effect was especially pronounced in those animals that exercised in the afternoon (or mouse equivalent).
That finding, Dr. Colwell says, “was a pretty big surprise.” He and his colleagues had expected to see the greatest effects from morning exercise, a popular workout time for many athletes.
But the animals that ran later produced more clock proteins and pumped the protein more efficiently to the rest of the body than animals that ran early in their day.
What all of this means for people isn’t clear, Dr. Colwell says. “It is evident that exercise will help to regulate” our bodily clocks and circadian rhythms, he says, especially as we enter middle age.
But whether we should opt for an afternoon jog over one in the morning “is impossible to say yet,” he says.
Late-night exercise, meanwhile, is probably inadvisable, he continues. Unpublished results from his lab show that healthy mice running at the animal equivalent of 11 p.m. or so developed significant disruptions in their circadian rhythm. Among other effects, they slept poorly.
“What we know, right now,” he says, “is that exercise is a good idea” if you wish to sleep well and avoid the physical ailments associated with an aging or clumsy circadian rhythm. And it is possible, although not yet proven, that afternoon sessions may produce more robust results.
“But any exercise is likely to be better than none,” he concludes. “And if you like morning exercise, which I do, great. Keep it up.”


23-Dec-2012, 05:34 AM
Bullying creates mental problems for children later

(IANS) / 19 December 2012

Bullying by peers at school may bring on mental health problems for children later by altering the expression of a gene involved in regulating mood.‘Many people think that our genes are immutable. However this study suggests that social environment can affect their functioning,’ said Isabelle Ouellet-Morin, professor at the University of Montreal and Centre for Studies on Human Stress (CSHS) at the Hopital Louis-H. Lafontaine.

‘This is particularly the case for victimisation experiences in childhood, which change not only our stress response but also the functioning of genes involved in mood regulation,’ adds Ouellet-Morin, who led the study, the journal Psychological Medicine reports.

A previous study by Ouellet-Morin, conducted at the Institute of Psychiatry in London, UK, showed that bullied children secrete less cortisol—the stress hormone—but had more problems with social interaction and aggressive behaviour.

The study indicates that the reduction of cortisol, which occurs around the age of 12, is preceded two years earlier by a change in the structure surrounding a gene (SERT) that regulates serotonin, a neurotransmitter involved in mood regulation and depression, according to a Montreal statement.

26-Dec-2012, 08:50 PM
Revealed: secrets of ancient Chinese medicinal herb

(AFP) / 24 December 2012

Scientist in the United States on Sunday offered a molecular-level explanation for how a Chinese herbal medicine used for more than 2,000 years tackles fever and eases malaria.The herb is an extract of the root of a flowering plant called blue evergreen hydrangea, known in Chinese as chang shan and in Latin as Dichroa febrifuga Lour.
Chang shan’s use dates back to the Han dynasty of 206 BC to 220 AD, according to ancient documents recording Chinese oral traditions.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/herb_240212.jpgIn 2009, researchers made insights into its active ingredient, febrifuginone, which can be pharmaceutically made as a molecule called halofuginone.
They found that halofuginone prevented production of rogue Th17 immune cells which attack healthy cells, causing inflammation that leads to fever.
A study published in the journal Nature on Sunday found halofuginone works by hampering production of proteins for making “bad” Th17 cells, but not the “good” ones.
Specifically, it blocks molecules called transfer RNA (tRNA), whose job is to assemble a protein bit by bit, in line with the DNA code written in the gene.
As for malaria, halofuginone appears to interfere with the same protein-assembly process that enables malaria parasites to live in the blood, the study said.
“Our new results solved a mystery that has puzzled people about the mechanism that has been used to treat fever from a malaria infection going back probably 2,000 years or more,” said Paul Schimmel, who headed the team at the Scripps Research Institute in California.
Halofuginone has been tested in small-scale human trials to treat cancer and muscular dystrophy. Drug engineers also eye it as a potential tool for combatting inflammatory bowel disease and rheumatoid arthritis, which are also autoimmune diseases.

awara ajnabi
10-Jan-2013, 07:49 PM
Bullying creates mental problems for children later

(IANS) / 19 December 2012

Bullying by peers at school may bring on mental health problems for children later by altering the expression of a gene involved in regulating mood.‘Many people think that our genes are immutable. However this study suggests that social environment can affect their functioning,’ said Isabelle Ouellet-Morin, professor at the University of Montreal and Centre for Studies on Human Stress (CSHS) at the Hopital Louis-H. Lafontaine.

‘This is particularly the case for victimisation experiences in childhood, which change not only our stress response but also the functioning of genes involved in mood regulation,’ adds Ouellet-Morin, who led the study, the journal Psychological Medicine reports.

A previous study by Ouellet-Morin, conducted at the Institute of Psychiatry in London, UK, showed that bullied children secrete less cortisol—the stress hormone—but had more problems with social interaction and aggressive behaviour.

The study indicates that the reduction of cortisol, which occurs around the age of 12, is preceded two years earlier by a change in the structure surrounding a gene (SERT) that regulates serotonin, a neurotransmitter involved in mood regulation and depression, according to a Montreal statement.

شئیر کرنے کا بہت بہت شکریہ – صحیح کہا گیا ہے کہ جب آپ کسی بچے کو بچپن میں ہی دبائیں گے تو اسکا ذہن نا پختہ رہتا ہے بلکہ اسکی فیصلہ کرنے کی صلاحیت مسخ ہو کر رہ جاتی ہے۔

14-Jan-2013, 05:57 PM
Its a nice health blog for sure.

22-Jan-2013, 05:34 AM
Strawberries cut cardiac risk in women

(IANS) / 18 January 2013

Strawberries and blueberries eaten thrice a week are likely to help women lower their heart attack risk by a third, new research says.The berries have rich levels of compounds called dietary flavonoids, found in foods such as dark chocolate, grapes, blackberries and eggplant.
Dietary flavonoids may prevent heart disease by helping to dilate blood vessels and by countering the build-up of plaque which can cause blockages in the coronary arteries and, ultimately, heart attacks, said researchers, the journal Circulation reports.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/health_1801213.jpgThe researchers found that women who ate the most blueberries and strawberries had a 32 percent reduction in their risk of heart attack compared to those whose ate them once a month or less - regardless of whether they had an otherwise nutritious diet, according to the Telegraph.
Eric Rimm, professor, who led the study, said: “Blueberries and strawberries can easily be incorporated into what women eat every week. This simple dietary change could have a significant impact on prevention efforts.”
Since these dietary flavonoids are very common in fruit and vegetables, it is likely that other foods will yield similar health benefits, he said. The study involved 93,600 women aged between 25 and 42 years.
“We have shown that even at an early age, eating more of these fruits may reduce risk of a heart attack later in life,” said Aedin Cassidy, professor and study co-author.
The findings were independent of risk factors such as age, high blood pressure, family history of heart attack, weight, exercise and smoking.

22-Jan-2013, 05:35 AM
Blood test predicts breast cancer recurrence

(Reuters) / 21 January 2013

A simple blood test could tell whether the commonest form of breast cancer will recur post therapy, sparing women unwanted treatment with anti-cancer drugs.“If we can accurately predict which women are at high risk of breast cancer recurrence, it gives the physicians and oncologists treating these women time to design a more aggressive therapy in the hopes of preventing the cancer from coming back,” said researcher Sambasivarao Damaraju, from University of Alberta, Canada.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/blood_2101213.jpg“Treatment strategies could be tailor-made for these women based on their genetic make-up and how susceptible it makes them to breast cancer recurrence,” said Damaraju, the journal Public Library of Science ONE reports.
The kit, which is being developed in Canada, focuses on something called luminal A breast cancer - the most common form of the disease and the type generally thought to have the best prognosis, according to the Daily Mail.
However, with it making up around 60 percent of the 50,000 cases of breast cancer diagnosed each year, it still accounts for a substantial number of relapses and deaths.
Alberta researchers tested blood samples taken from women when they had been diagnosed with breast cancer years previously.
The new test could spare some women unnecessary treatment for cancer.
Comparing the DNA of samples taken from women whose cancer had returned with DNA of samples from women who had remained in remission, indicated the possibility of the cancer recurring.
Canadian researchers believe their technique will be more accurate as it uses the DNA a person is born with to work out if their predisposition to breast cancer.

23-Jan-2013, 12:01 AM
The tantalising tukh-malanga

By Zahrah Nasir
Zahrah Nasir throws light on the history and botanical characteristics of sweet basil and provides useful information on growing the herb

http://archives.dawn.com/weekly/review/archive/060309/images/review14.jpgThis wonderful Urdu name of the plant rolls pleasantly around the mouth leaving a very intriguing after taste for those who have not actually got around to sampling the seed in question. Also known as naz boo, a second Urdu name for the same family of herbs, tukh-malanga is the seed of that all time favourite sweet basil, or basilicum ocimum to be botanically correct.

Traditionally, tukh-malanga seed sold in surprisingly large quantities, is soaked in water and then added to summer sherbets and faluda for its well known cooling effect. Not many people realise that the seed is the sweet basil which they repeatedly request the owners of regular seed stores to supply them with, often without any luck, in order to add this very versatile herb to their gardens!

Sweet basil, and just to stir the linguistic pot a little more, is not the tulsi which many people confuse it with. Tulsi, yet another Urdu name, is a perennial variety of basil, revered by Hindus who also call it sacred basil whilst sweet basil is an annual variety. Tulsi, to make the difference even more apparent, has rather tough, slightly hairy leaves and stems, the stems when cut into bead shapes and strung in to necklaces claim to protect the wearer from evil, but the leaves and stems of sweet basil are very soft and tender to the touch, so much so in fact that they must be handled lightly in order to avoid bruising and discolouration.

Back to tukh-malanga before I get side-tracked again, sweet basil is native to the subcontinent and Africa and it is a historical fact that Alexander the Great, something of a botanist when he wasn’t subjugating people and their countries, was so impressed by it that he sent samples of the plant and lots of seed back home to Greece where it quickly became established before moving on to Rome where the Italians still make full use of it in their delectable cuisine.

http://archives.dawn.com/weekly/review/archive/060309/images/review14b.jpg However, and this is the ‘twist’, for some unknown reason the Greeks came to associate basil with all manner of evil, though this, by the way, didn’t prevent them from using it as an ingredient in love potions, and some bright spark came up with the theory that unless you soundly, roundly and very nastily curse the seed when planting it then it won’t grow!

This tradition also spread to Italy and throughout the rest of Europe but I do not know if it is still practised as I have not been in the vicinity when basil sowing is in process. I most certainly do not curse my basil seeds during the planting process but talk to them rather nicely instead, but come to think of it, I may be mumbling, certainly thinking, “Germinate and grow up so I can cut you to pieces and eat you!” Logical isn't it?

Now that all of the above is out of the way I will tell you some more about tukh-malanga and its many uses. For a start, the seed has completely different uses than the actual plant and, as for those of you who are familiar with it will know, when soaked in water the seeds quickly develop a highly mucilaginous coating, an almost transparent, whitish, jelly-like substance which, along with the seed itself, is highly regarded for its cooling and tonic properties in locations as diverse as the Caribbean Islands, South and North America, Europe, China, Malaysia and, of course, the subcontinent where it is an ingredient of numerous herbal medicines.

http://archives.dawn.com/weekly/review/archive/060309/images/review14c.jpg Sweet basil, the entire plant not just the leaves, is considered to be a restorative herb which lowers fever, helps digestion, cures bacterial infections and gets rid of intestinal parasites. An extract of the plant is popular for the relief of colds and influenza, to relieve nausea, migraine, anxiety and exhaustion. A different preparation is used to clear up acne, treat insect bites, skin infections and even snake bites. The oil is in high demand in the perfume industry and is also added to dental hygiene products and fancy, high quality soaps. The leaves have so many culinary uses that one could devote an entire recipe book to the subject! Another interesting fact is that whilst the seeds are renowned for their cooling effect, the rest of the plant is directly opposite being ‘warming’ to the human system.

Having ploughed your way this far, perhaps you would like to know how to grow sweet basil for yourself and, this I guarantee is nowhere near as complicated as the previous discourse may lead you to believe! Basil, in all of its forms, is one of the easiest and most rewarding herbs to grow in your garden or in suitable containers on a balcony or patio. Soil need not be terribly rich but must be well drained as water-logging causes the plants, particularly young seedlings, to rot off at the point where the stems emerge from the soil. Basil needs sunshine and plenty of it but, it does tend to run to seed rapidly in the extremely high summer temperatures of places including Islamabad and Lahore.

I would suggest sowing the seeds of your selected variety, just under the surface of damp soil, during late February –- March in Islamabad, Lahore, Multan and all the places in-between; the same goes for Peshawar, though you can continue sowing seed until the end of April if a little shade is available in the heat of the day and this applies to Quetta too; in the cooler mountainous regions, one has to wait until the soil warms up at the end of April through to the end of May and even until late June.

Curb your patience please Karachiites as I am just getting to you and, despite what you may have read elsewhere, you have the best climate for growing basil of all as you can have fresh basil almost round the year. You can sow seed from the middle of August when the monsoons finish through to the end of October, and then start all over again from the beginning of February through to the end of April. Not bad eh!

A word of warning here, don’t get confused by the countless varieties of basil on sale be they green, big leaved, lettuce leaved, narrow leaved, small leaved, lemon flavoured, cinnamon scented, blue leaved or even that beautiful deep purple, pink flowered, ruffled leaved variety, they are all absolutely superb. Grow them all if you can but do keep in mind another Greek superstition -–– if you eat too much basil you just may turn in to a scorpion. Beat that one if you can!

Send your gardening queries to zahrahnasir@hotmail.com. Answers will appear in a future issue of 'The Review'.


26-Jan-2013, 07:45 PM
Some common pathologies of shoulder
Staff Reporter / 26 January 2013

The shoulder is a combination of four joints that along with tendons and muscles allows a wide range of movement in the arm — from scratching your back to throwing the perfect pitchMobility has its price, however. It may lead to problems of instability of the joint or impingement or tear of the soft tissues in your shoulder resulting in pain, explains Dr Chidananda P. Shivashankar, Specialist Orthopedic, Zulekha Hospital, Dubai. The pain may be temporary or it may continue requiring medical attention.
Some of the common pathologies of shoulder include rotator cuff tear, impingement syndrome, shoulder instability and frozen shoulder.
Rotator cuff is a confluence of four tendons which provide stability and mobility to the shoulder. Owing to its position below the bone, it is vulnerable to get damaged/torn, leading to pain and/or inability to lift or rotate the arm.
The pain is common at night and often radiates down the arm. This damage can be caused by a single injury or over a period of time. Treatment includes drug therapy, physiotherapy and steroid injections. A keyhole surgery can solve the problem and help recover early. An open surgery is indicated in some cases.
Impingement syndrome occurs due to pinching and inflammation of part of the rotator cuff in the space below the Acromion (subacromial) causing pain in certain movements and positions of the shoulder. The causes include fluid cushion inflammation, bony growth or a calcific deposit in the tendon. Treatment involves physiotherapy and medicines.
Main joint of the shoulder (Glenohumeral joint) is a ball and socket joint. The socket is like a flat saucer while the ball is a hemisphere. Shoulder instability occurs when the ball is forced out of the shoulder socket. This can happen as a result of a sudden injury or from overuse and it is more commonly seen between the age group of 20 to 40 years.
Once the ligaments and tendons (the stabilising structures) around the shoulder become loose or torn, dislocations can occur repeatedly. Recurring dislocations cause pain and unsteadiness when you raise your arm or move it away from your body. Depending on the age, extent and cause of instability, the condition may need surgical stabilisation to prevent arthritis and pain.
Frozen shoulder is an extremely painful condition in which shoulder becomes partially or completely immovable. Cause is largely unknown but it starts with pain, moves on to stiffness and finally reaches a stage of resolution when pain becomes less and most of the movement returns. Treatment is usually with anti-inflammatory medications, physiotherapy and joint injections. Resistant cases may need surgery.
Keyhole surgery involves two to three 5mm wounds, use of telescopic camera and specific instruments. Majority of the shoulder problems can be managed by this method.

26-Jan-2013, 07:48 PM
Mediterranean diet may not protect the aging brain

(Reuters) / 25 January 2013

Hopes that a Mediterranean diet would be as good for the head as it is for the heart may have been dampened by a French study that found little benefit for aging brains from the diet rich in fruit, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, wine and olive oil.The study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, looked at the participants’ dietary patterns in middle age and measured their cognitive performance at around age 65, but found no connection between Mediterranean eating and mental performance.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/deit_2501213.jpg“Our study does not support the hypothesis of a significant neuroprotective effect of a (Mediterranean diet) on cognitive function,” wrote study leader Emmanuelle Kesse-Guyot at the nutritional epidemiology research center of the French national health research agency INSERM.
It’s been suggested that the “good” fats in the Mediterranean diet might benefit the brain directly, or that low saturated fats and high fiber in the diet could help stave off cognitive decline indirectly by keeping blood vessels healthy.
Previous research has seemed to uphold that premise.
One large study in the U.S. Midwest, for example, found that people in their 60s and older who ate a mostly Mediterranean diet were less prone to mental decline as they aged. Another study of residents of Manhattan linked a Mediterranean-style diet to a 40 percent lower risk of Alzheimer’s disease.
Researchers in the French study used data on 3,083 people who were followed from the mid-1990s, when they were at least 45 years old.
At the beginning of the study, participants recorded what they ate over one 24-hour period every two months, for a total of six dietary record samples per year. Then, between 2007 and 2009 when the participants were about 65 years old, their memory and other mental abilities were measured.
Researchers then separated participants into three categories depending on how closely they adhered to a Mediterranean-style diet, and compared their mental ability test scores.
Overall, they found that people who ate a diet closest to the Mediterranean ideal performed about the same as those who ate a non-restricted diet.
Nikos Scarmeas, who was not involved with the study but has researched the effects of food on brain health, said it’s important to note that the new study had some limitations.
For instance, researchers only tested the participants’ mental abilities once, making it impossible to track whether they got better or worse over time, added Scarmeas, an associate professor at New York’s Columbia University Medical Center.
“We don’t have the strong evidence to go and tell people,’Listen, if you follow this diet, it will improve cognition,’” he said.

29-Jan-2013, 11:38 PM
28 January 2013 Last updated at 02:51 ET
Boosting sleep 'may slow memory rot'

By James Gallagher Health and science reporter, BBC News


It may be possible to slow the decline in memory and learning as we age by tackling poor sleep, researchers hope.

Their study, in the journal Nature Neuroscience (http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nn.3324), has revealed an intimate relationship between an ageing brain, sleep and memory.
Experiments showed that changes in the ageing brain damaged the quality of deep sleep, this in turn hampered the ability to store memories.
Scientists want to test ways of boosting sleep to halt memory decline.
Wisdom may come with age, but both the brain and the body take the strain of time. Many people will be aware that both their memory and sleep are not as good as in their earlier years.
Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, said it was unknown whether changes in the brain, sleep and memory were all separate signs of ageing or deeply connected.
A good kip
“Start QuoteTaken all together, the deterioration of the brain leads to the deterioration of sleep to the deterioration of memory.”

Dr Matthew Walker University of California, Berkeley

They performed a series of experiments on 36 people - an even split of those in their twenties and their seventies.

First the team showed that they could use the state of a region of the brain, called the medial prefronal cortex, to predict how much deep, or slow-wave, sleep a person would have.
That part of the brain is essential for entering deep sleep, but with age the region degrades.
Secondly, they showed that the amount of deep sleep could be used to predict how well people would do on memory tests.
The younger patients getting loads of good quality sleep performed better on tests than their older colleagues who had worse quality sleep.
One of the researchers, Dr Matthew Walker told the BBC: "Taken all together, the deterioration of the brain leads to the deterioration of sleep to the deterioration of memory."
"Slow wave sleep is critically important for cementing new memories you've recently learned. It's like clicking the save button.
"It's especially depressing as I continue to get older, but there might be a silver lining."
Researchers are not able to restore the ageing section of the brain, but they believe they can do something about sleep.
It is possible to boost the quality of sleep by stimulating the right region of the brain with electricity during the night.
The researchers said this had been shown to boost memory performance in young people and they wanted to begin experiments on elderly patients too.
"You don't have to restore brain cells to restore sleep," said Dr Walker who described their aim as "jump-starting" the system.
Dementia In patients with dementia, the symptoms of brain cells dying, bad sleep and memory loss are far far worse than in normal ageing.
Some studies have suggested a link between and dementia. A report, published in the journal Science Translational Medicine (http://stm.sciencemag.org/content/4/150/150ra122), suggested problems sleeping may be an early sign of Alzheimer's.
Dr Simon Ridley, from the charity Alzheimer's Research UK, said further studies were needed to confirm the link.
"Increasing evidence has linked changes in sleep to memory problems and dementia, but it's not clear whether these changes might be a cause or consequence.
"The people studied here were followed for a very short period, and one next step could be to investigate whether a lack of 'slow-wave' sleep may also be linked to a long-term decline in memory."


30-Jan-2013, 08:20 PM
An earlier lunchtime may help you lose weight

(Reuters) / 30 January 2013

Want to lose weight? Eating lunch earlier rather than later may help you out.Dieters who ate early lunches tended to lose more weight than those who had their midday meal on the later side, according to a Spanish study published in the International Journal of Obesity.
The finding doesn’t prove that bumping up your lunch hour will help you shed that extra weight, but it is possible that eating times play a role in how the body regulates its weight, researchers said.
‘We should now seriously start to consider the timing of food - not just what we eat, but also when we eat,’ said study co-author Frank Scheer, from Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston.
His group’s research included 420 people attending nutrition clinics in southeast Spain. Along with going to regular group therapy sessions with nutrition and exercise counseling, dieters measured, weighed and recorded their food and reported on their daily physical activity.
Study participants were on a so-called Mediterranean diet, in which about 40 percent of each day’s calories are consumed at lunch. About half of the people said they ate lunch before 3:00 p.m. and half after.
Over 20 weeks of counseling, early and late lunchers ate a similar amount of food, based on their food journals, and burned a similar amount of calories through daily activities.
However, early eaters lost an average of 10 kilograms ( 22 lbs) - just over 11 percent of their starting weight - while late eaters dropped 7.7 kg (17 lb), or nine percent of their initial weight.
What time dieters ate breakfast or dinner wasn’t linked to their ultimate weight loss.
One limitation of the study is that the researchers didn’t randomly assign people to eat early or late, so it’s possible there were other underlying differences between dieters with different mealtimes. Certain gene variants that have been linked to obesity were more common in late lunchers, for example.
People who eat later may have extra food in their stomach when they go to sleep, which could mean more of it isn’t burned and ends up being stored as fat, said Yunsheng Ma, a nutrition researcher from the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worcester.
How often people eat during the day and whether they bring food from home or eat out may also contribute to weight loss, added Ma, who wasn’t involved in the new research.
He said any implications of late eating could be exacerbated among people in the United States.
‘The pattern of consumption of meals is very different in the U.S.,’ Ma told Reuters Health. Many people skip breakfast or lunch, then end up overdoing it on calories at dinner.
Scheer said that in the United States, where dinner is typically the biggest meal, researchers would expect people who eat later dinners to have more trouble losing weight based on his team’s findings.
Regardless of exact mealtimes, Ma said it’s important for people to spread their calories out through the day.
‘Have a good breakfast and a good lunch, and at dinner, people should eat lightly,’ he said. SOURCE: http://bit.ly/aCKLXR

12-Feb-2013, 12:28 AM
Green tea deterrent against Alzheimer’s
(IANS) / 10 February 2013

Green tea contain certain chemicals which could hinder the progress of Alzheimer’s disease that afflict a growing number of aged people, says new research.In early-stage laboratory experiments, the researchers from the University of Leeds identified the process which allows harmful clumps of protein to latch on to brain cells, causing them to die.

They were able to interrupt this pathway using the purified extracts of EGCG from green tea and resveratrol from red grapes, reports Science Daily.

The findings, published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry, offer potential new targets for developing drugs to treat Alzheimer’s disease, which affects some 800,000 people in Britain alone, and for which there is currently no cure.

‘This is an important step in increasing our understanding of the cause and progression of Alzheimer’s disease,’ said lead researcher professor Nigel Hooper of the university’s Faculty of Biological Sciences.

‘It’s a misconception that Alzheimer’s is a natural part of aging; it’s a disease that we believe can ultimately be cured through finding new opportunities for drug targets like this,’ he said.

12-Feb-2013, 12:30 AM
Diet fizzy drinks come with higher diabetes risk
(IANS) / 11 February 2013

Diet fizzy drinks, touted as healthier substitutes are likely to push up diabetes risk by 60 percent, rather than the regular versions, says a European study involving more than 66,000 women.Diet drinkers also consume more or an average of 2.8 glasses a week which compounds the effect, as compared to 1.6 for regular drinkers. Regular, full-fat versions have previously been suspected of causing diabetes.

More than 66,000 middle-aged French women were quizzed about their dietary habits. Their health was then monitored over 14 years from 1993 to 2007, the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reports.

The researchers, from the National Institute of Health and Medical Research in France, examined the rates of diabetes among women who drank either regular or diet fizzy drinks and those who drank only unsweetened fruit juice, according to the Daily Mail.

Those who drank up to 359 ml of any type of fizzy a week - just more than a regular-sized can - were a third more likely to develop the disease. The risk was more than double in those who drank 600 ml a week - just bigger than a regular bottle.

Drinkers of diet drinks had an even higher risk of diabetes compared to those who drank regular ones. Those who drank up to 500 ml a week had a 15 percent increased risk.

Once more than 1.5 litres a week was consumed, this became a 60 percent increased risk.

‘Contrary to conventional thinking, the risk of diabetes is higher with light beverages compared with regular sweetened drinks,’ the researchers said.

12-Feb-2013, 04:51 AM
Can extreme calorie counting make you live longer? http://news.bbcimg.co.uk/media/images/65788000/jpg/_65788385_martin_knight_eating.jpg

Can eating less help you live longer?

Continue reading the main story (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-21125016#story_continues_1) In today's Magazine (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine/)

How often does food fraud happen? (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-21381689)

Bombarded with advertisements promising a longer, healthier life, the BBC's Los Angeles reporter Peter Bowes goes in search of eternal youth.
At 6ft 1in (1.85m), Martin Knight weighs 10st 4lb (65.77kg). Breakfast - the same every day - is a 170-calorie mixture of kale, shallots, sprouted oats, tomato paste and olive oil. He washes it down with green or white tea.
Knight follows a calorie-restricted diet.
He eats 10 small meals a day and survives on about 1,900 calories - more than most people who restrict their calorie intake. Each meal is weighed to ensure that his daily intake is accurate.
Adherents of this approach to health are known as Cronies - Calorie Restriction with Optimal Nutrition - and Dr Janet Tomiyama, a psychologist at the University of California, is studying them.
"The normal person needs around 2,000 calories (a day). So if you are talking about cutting 500 calories per day, every day for the rest of your life, that's a very tall order," she says.
"That's why this group is so fascinating because they've been able to do this, and they've been able to do it for over a decade."
Knight's breakfast may not appeal to everyone

Tomiyama says the group is mostly made up of older white men. They tend to be well-educated "connoisseurs of scientific literature".
They are mostly looking for good health and see a longer life, if it occurs, as a welcome by-product.
The results of Tomiyama's study, exploring the psychological impact on the participants, are expected to be published later this year.
Knight, 49, joined the study two years ago. He had followed a vegetarian or vegan diet for much of his adult life but in the past few years has restricted his intake of calories.
He works in the finance industry and lives in a sparsely furnished house in the coastal town of Santa Barbara, California.

“Start QuoteWhen you have a little bit of hunger in the background you are more aware and more alive” Martin Knight Practitioner of calorie restriction

He enjoys a slow, meditative existence, practising yoga, lifting weights and running in his spare time.
"It's second nature to me now, it doesn't seem difficult," he says. "It would be harder for me to live with unlimited calories, like I did before. I think I would be miserable."
It is perhaps just as well that he does not like ice cream. For a treat, he will occasionally have an avocado sandwich.
Knight says he follows his diet because it makes him happy.
"It makes you more alert. It fits in with a more healthy, slower-paced kind of lifestyle. It's very practical," he says.
"When you have a little bit of hunger in the background, you're more aware and more alive."

The science of fasting Dr Valter Longo, director of the Longevity Institute at the University of Southern California, has established that restricting calorie intake has clear benefits for mice.
He has also identified the role of a growth hormone, insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1), in causing the body to go into what he describes as "repair mode".
Studies on people who restrict their intake of calories suggest that eating less reduces their IGF-1 levels.
This seems to switch them from "growth mode" to "repair mode", and it's suggested this is good for their health.

The power of intermittent fasting (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-19112549)
Proof mounts on restricted diet (http://www.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/8141082.stm)

Experiments on mice have shown that eating significantly less food can extend lifespans, so long as the food is highly nutritious.
There is still no proof that restricting calories extends human life spans, however, and two recent studies with rhesus monkeys produced conflicting results.
But both studies reported the same beneficial effects on health - all the monkeys were much healthier and suffered from fewer diseases.
"If we were able to reduce... weight in the Western world by 15 to 20%, the incidence of cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and obesity, would go down dramatically," says Dr Raphael de Cabo, the lead author of one of the studies.
"That undoubtedly would increase the mean life span of the human population."
Perhaps the final word should go to the man many credit with pioneering the idea of restricting food intake to extend life.
Dr Roy Walford, a professor of pathology at the UCLA School of Medicine, died in 2004 due to complications from Lou Gehrig's Disease, also known as Motor Neurone Disease. He was 79. For much of his life he was a passionate believer in the power of eating less.
He consumed a mere 1,600 calories a day and believed that a lifespan of 150 was possible for human beings.
Continue reading the main story (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-21125016#story_continues_4) http://news.bbcimg.co.uk/media/images/65472000/gif/_65472492_whatif_304.gif
What if we could stay young forever? What if everyone had a car? What If? is a season across BBC News looking at visions of the future.
What If (special report) (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-21069026)

Walford was one of the first scientists to demonstrate that mice on a limited diet could double their lifespan. When I met him in 1999, at his home in Santa Monica, he offered a pragmatic view of calorie restriction and its benefits.
It is a "choice you have to make", he told me.
"You're healthier during all that time, you need less sleep, you're intellectually stimulated, you're kind of wired, there's an increased sense of well-being and vitality.
"So if you want to trade all that to eat cake, then I say - go ahead and eat cake."


15-Feb-2013, 07:56 PM
Asthma drug shows promise in treating diabetes, obesity

(IANS) / 12 February 2013

Amlexanox, a drug prescribed for asthma in Japan, also reverses obesity, diabetes and fatty liver in mice, according to a new study by US researchers.‘One of the reasons that diets are so ineffective in producing weight loss for some people is that their bodies adjust to the reduced calories by also reducing their metabolism, so that they are ‘defending’ their body weight,’ says Alan Saltiel, director of the University of Michigan’s Life Sciences Institute (LSI), which conducted the study.

‘Amlexanox seems to tweak the metabolic response to excessive calorie storage in mice,’ adds Saltiel.

Different formulations of amlexanox are currently prescribed to treat asthma in Japan and canker sores in the US, the journal Nature Medicine reports.

The study appears to confirm and extend the notion that the genes IKKE and TBK1 play a crucial role for maintaining metabolic balance, a discovery published by the Saltiel lab in 2009, according to an LSI statement.

‘Amlexanox appears to work in mice by inhibiting two genes - IKKE and TBK1 - that we think together act as a sort of brake on metabolism,’ Saltiel said. ‘By releasing the brake, amlexanox seems to free the metabolic system to burn more, and possibly store less energy.’

Using high-throughput chemical screening at LSI’s Centre for Chemical Genomics to search for compounds that inhibit IKKE and TBK1, the researchers hit upon an approved off-patent drug: amlexanox.

They then demonstrated that amlexanox had profound beneficial effects in both genetic and dietary-induced obese mice. The chemical lowered the weight of obese mice and reversed related metabolic problems such as diabetes and fatty liver.

15-Feb-2013, 07:58 PM
Asthma drug shows promise in treating diabetes, obesity

(IANS) / 12 February 2013

Amlexanox, a drug prescribed for asthma in Japan, also reverses obesity, diabetes and fatty liver in mice, according to a new study by US researchers.‘One of the reasons that diets are so ineffective in producing weight loss for some people is that their bodies adjust to the reduced calories by also reducing their metabolism, so that they are ‘defending’ their body weight,’ says Alan Saltiel, director of the University of Michigan’s Life Sciences Institute (LSI), which conducted the study.

‘Amlexanox seems to tweak the metabolic response to excessive calorie storage in mice,’ adds Saltiel.

Different formulations of amlexanox are currently prescribed to treat asthma in Japan and canker sores in the US, the journal Nature Medicine reports.

The study appears to confirm and extend the notion that the genes IKKE and TBK1 play a crucial role for maintaining metabolic balance, a discovery published by the Saltiel lab in 2009, according to an LSI statement.

‘Amlexanox appears to work in mice by inhibiting two genes - IKKE and TBK1 - that we think together act as a sort of brake on metabolism,’ Saltiel said. ‘By releasing the brake, amlexanox seems to free the metabolic system to burn more, and possibly store less energy.’

Using high-throughput chemical screening at LSI’s Centre for Chemical Genomics to search for compounds that inhibit IKKE and TBK1, the researchers hit upon an approved off-patent drug: amlexanox.

They then demonstrated that amlexanox had profound beneficial effects in both genetic and dietary-induced obese mice. The chemical lowered the weight of obese mice and reversed related metabolic problems such as diabetes and fatty liver.

15-Feb-2013, 07:59 PM
Living at higher altitude can keep you slim

(IANS) / 15 February 2013

Americans living at higher altitudes were more likely to be slimmer than those in low-lying areas, says a new research.Jameson Voss, from Uniformed Services University in Maryland, who led the research, said: ‘I was surprised by the magnitude of the effect...I wasn’t expecting such a consistent pattern as what was emerging.’

The study was based on data from 400,000 people living in Colorado. The figures showed a person’s obesity risk dropped with every 660 feet increase in elevation.

‘It provides some evidence that these associations persist over the long term,’ Voss said.

Cynthia Beall, who researches how the body adapts to high altitudes but was not involved with the new study, said it’s common for travelers to high elevations to burn more calories in their first few weeks, the International Journal of Obesity reports.

Researchers combined information from several databases, including a telephone health survey of 422,603 Americans from 2011. They had information on 236 people who lived at the highest altitude of at least 9,800 feet above sea level. Those people tended to smoke less, eat healthier and exercise more, according to the Daily Mail.

The researchers also had information on 322,681 people who lived in the lowest altitude range - less than 1,600ft above sea level.

After taking into account other factors that could influence the results such as retirement age, the researchers found adults living in the lowest altitude range had a Body Mass Index (BMI), a height to weight ration of 26.6.

That compared to people who lived in the highest altitude range, who had a BMI of 24.2. A healthy BMI falls between 18.5 and 24.9.

19-Feb-2013, 08:40 PM
Acupuncture can help relieve seasonal allergies?
(Reuters) / 19 February 2013

Watery eyes and stuffy noses are seasonal martyrdom for millions of allergy sufferers around the globe, but now a German study finds that some help may come from an unlikely source - acupuncture.Researchers, publishing in the Annals of Internal Medicine, found that 71 percent of people reported an improvement in their allergies after eight weeks of acupuncture.
But so did 56 percent of allergy sufferers who were treated with sham acupuncture as a comparison.
‘Acupuncture led to statistically significant improvements in disease-specific quality of life an antihistamine use measures after eight weeks of treatment compared with sham acupuncture and with (medication) along,’ wrote lead researcher Benno Brinkhaus and colleagues. ‘But the improvements may not be clinically significant.’
Brinkhaus, at Charite-University Medical Center in Berlin, and his colleagues randomly assigned 422 people with seasonal allergies to receive real or sham acupuncture or to take only antihistamines as needed.
After eight weeks and 12 treatment sessions, average allergy symptom scores dropped among people in the acupuncture group from 2.7 to 1.7 points on a 0-to-6 scale, where lower scores indicate fewer symptoms.
Among patients treated with sham acupuncture, symptom scores improved from 2.3 to 1.8 point, and from 2.5 to 2.2 in the medication only group.
However, by another eight weeks after the treatment ended, there was no longer any difference in the degree of symptom improvement between groups.
People with allergies would likely notice about a half-point change on the symptom scale in their daily lives, the researchers said - the difference between the real and sham acupuncture groups after eight weeks in the current study.
‘It works, but there are some caveats (for) people who might think of using it,’ said Harold Nelson, who treats allergies at National Jewish Health in Denver, Colorado and was not part of the study.
‘This is pretty invasive, particularly when you compare it to something like spraying a nasal steroid in your nose once a morning,’ he added. It is also more time consuming and requires finding a qualified, licensed acupuncture’s.
Researchers aren’t sure why acupuncture might help people with seasonal allergies, other than its possible beneficial effect on the immune system.
Nelson said antihistamines might not have been the best drug comparison for acupuncture, since daily use of nasal steroids is better at preventing symptoms.
But drugs don’t work well for everybody.
‘We mostly saw patients in our outpatient practice who have had this disease for years,’ Brinkhaus told Reuters Health. ‘They are not very happy taking the medications every day, and some of them suffer from side effects.’
For those people, acupuncture could be a good add-on option, he added.
‘It’s not an alternative. We use it firstly as some sort of complementary medicine,’ he said. ‘If the acupuncture has good results, we can reduce the anti-allergic medication.’ SOURCE: http://bit.ly/MnBiCA

19-Feb-2013, 08:44 PM
Honey most effective in healing wounds
(IANS) / 17 February 2013

Honey suppresses the growth of a quartet of bugs commonly infesting chronic wounds, but according to a finding manuka honey is the best of them for healing injuries.University of Technology Sydney (UTS) researchers looked at three kinds of honey, namely manuka, kanuka and clover, to determine which was the most effective in combating them.

Real Manuka honey comes from the Leptospermum scoparium plant that is native to New Zealand, the journal Public Library of Science ONE reports.

However, many companies attempt to artificially increase methylglyoxal (MGO) levels, known to inhibit bacterial growth in inferior honey products, and label them as genuine Manuka, but synthetically altered honeys are no match for the real thing.

Researchers looked at two key honey ingredients known to inhibit bacterial growth: MGO, which is present at high concentrations in Manuka honeys; and hydrogen peroxide which is present in many honeys at varying concentrations, including manuka.

‘What we saw was that the manuka honeys were the most effective at inhibiting growth of all the bacteria,’ said Liz Harry, professor at the UTS, who led the study.

‘Interestingly, the MGO level alone cannot explain the variation in the effects we saw; the key to the effectiveness of honey is its chemical complexity - it contains several chemicals that inhibit bacterial growth, not just MGO,’ said Harry, according to an UTS statement.

The research was conducted at the three institute at UTS, in collaboration with New Zealand natural health and beauty products company.

‘Unlike antibiotics, it is not expected that bacteria will become resistant to honey, a claim that has been supported by our research,’ Harry added.

23-Feb-2013, 01:53 AM

28-Feb-2013, 09:11 PM
Pessimists live longer

(AFP) / 28 February 2013

BERLIN — Older people who look on the darker side of life tend to live longer than optimists, who in turn face an increased risk of illness and mortality, a new study by a German research institute found Thursday.Researchers in Germany and Switzerland found that older people who believe their life satisfaction will be above average in future face a 10-percent higher mortality risk or are more likely to develop physical health problems, the DIW think-tank said.
“It is possible that a pessimistic outlook leads elderly people to look after themselves and their health better and take greater precautions against risks,” said one of the researchers, Frieder Lang.
“It seems that older people who have a low expectation of how contented they will be in future lead longer and healthier lives than those who believe their future is rosy,” DIW said.
The study was conducted by a team from the Friedrich Alexander University of Erlangen-Nuernberg, the Berlin-based DIW as well as Humboldt University in Berlin and the university of Zurich.
They analysed long-term data compiled between 1993 and 2003 where the same people belonging to three different age groups were asked every year to assess their current level of life satisfaction and how contented they expected to be in five years.
Over the 10-year period the researchers checked with each participant six times whether their expected level of satisfaction tallied with reality five years on.
Results showed 25 percent of older participants realistically estimated their future contentment, while around 43 percent underestimated it and 32 percent overestimated, the DIW said.
Young adults mostly had an unrealistically rosy view of their future while middle-aged people were largely spot on, it said.
- See more at: http://www.khaleejtimes.com/kt-article-display-1.asp?xfile=/data/health/2013/February/health_February47.xml§ion=health#sthash.DEPVtdey.d puf

01-Mar-2013, 09:30 PM
Diabetes drugs tied to pancreatitis: study

(Reuters) / 1 March 2013

People who take a certain type of diabetes drug to lower blood sugar levels may be at an increased risk of developing an inflamed pancreas, according to a new study.Glucagonlike peptide 1(GLP-1) therapies that include exenatide - marketed as Byetta by an alliance between Bristol-Myers Squibb and AstraZeneca - and sitagliptin - marketed as Januvia by Merck - have been linked to pancreatitis before in studies on animals and small groups of patients, said the study’s lead author.
“New therapies and risks are only evaluated when studies are done. We need to know (the drugs) are effective in lowering blood sugar, but we also need to know about risks,” said Dr. Sonal Singh, from the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore.
Pancreatitis, which can cause life-threatening complications, is rare but more common in people with type 2 diabetes. Singh said pancreatitis occurs in about three of every 1,000 diabetes patients.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that there are about 19 million Americans diagnosed with diabetes, and another 7 million who have the disease but don’t know it yet.
In people with type 2 diabetes, the body doesn’t produce enough insulin or is resistant to what it does produce.
For the new study, published in JAMA Internal Medicine, the researchers used data on 1,269 diabetes patients between the ages of 18 and 64 years old, who were admitted to U.S. hospitals with pancreatitis in 2005 through 2008.
They compared those to 1,269 other diabetes patients who were similar, but were not hospitalized with pancreatitis.
Overall, they found 87 of the diabetes patients with pancreatitis were taking GLP-1 therapies, compared to 58 of the diabetes patients without pancreatitis.
Singh told Reuters Health that the findings show the drugs are linked to a doubling of the risk of pancreatitis - about six cases per 1,000 diabetics.
“I won’t say you should be alarmed about the findings, but it’s something you should consider,” he said.
‘Changing treatment’
Dr. Aaron Cypess, a staff endocrinologist in the clinic of the Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston, said the new study will not change how he treats patients, but it may influence him to go over his patients’ risk factors for pancreatitis.
“For me personally it’s not going to change my practice pattern in terms of stopping the drugs, but we may revisit whether you’re showing any of the risk factors,” said Cypess, who was not involved with the new study.
In a joint statement, the American Diabetes Association and the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists also said the new findings should not change how doctors treat diabetes patients.
“The analysis is a retrospective study using data from an administrative database. This type of analysis is not considered as robust as a prospective randomized controlled clinical trial, the gold standard for evaluating treatments,” the organizations wrote in the statement.
They continue that there are nine of those “gold standard” trials in the works that should provide answers soon.
The current study also had limitations, including that the diabetes patients hospitalized with pancreatitis tended to lead a less healthy lifestyle than those who did not have the condition.
In a commentary, Belinda Gier and Dr. Peter Butler from the University of California, Los Angeles, write supporters say the drugs are safe and offer some advantages over older medications.
Currently, the labels for Januvia and Byetta carry warnings that there have been reports of pancreatitis in people taking the drugs.
Other side effects of Byetta include nausea and other stomach issues. For Januvia side effects also include respiratory infections and headaches. Cypess told Reuters Health both drugs are still protected by patents and can be expensive.
Representatives from Merck and Bristol-Myers Squibb said they - along with drug regulators - actively monitor reports of adverse events in users of their drugs, and have not found evidence showing the drugs cause pancreatitis.
- See more at: http://www.khaleejtimes.com/kt-article-display-1.asp?xfile=/data/health/2013/March/health_March1.xml§ion=health#sthash.tF5RhB2a.dpuf

01-Mar-2013, 09:36 PM
Honey has power to fight cancer

Olivia Olarte-Ulherr / 25 February 2013

Scientific findings by researchers here could be the breakthrough the world has long been waiting for in cancer treatment.The groundbreaking discovery by the research team at the UAE University found that honey from New Zealand’s manuka tree can effectively inhibit growth of cancer cells, including breast, skin and colon cancer; and tremendously reduce the toxicity associated with chemotherapy treatment.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/honey=-1501.jpg“Manuka honey has been recognised for its anti-bacterial and wound-healing properties for many years. However, the potential effect of manuka on cancer cells has not been investigated in detail,” said Dr Basel Al Ramadi, professor and chair of the Department of Medical Microbiology and Immunology, College of Medicine and Health Sciences at the UAEU.
In the study, led by Dr Al Ramadi, the team of researchers used three different cancer cell lines (breast, skin and colon cancer) and demonstrated that the addition of exceedingly small amounts of manuka honey, as little as 1.0 per cent, can stop the growth of cancer cells by up to 70 per cent.
The team of investigators carried out further studies to characterise the mechanism by which manuka honey is inducing the death of cancer cells.
“The evidence so far suggests that manuka acts by stimulating a number of proteins inside the cells that leads to the induction of apoptosis, or programmed cell death. This is a natural process by which our body eliminates old or unwanted cells and is part of the normal organism’s development,” Dr Al Ramadi told Khaleej Times.
Using an experimental cancer model, in which mice are implanted with fast-growing skin tumour cells, the researchers administered manuka honey intravenously in conjunction with chemotherapy, and the results showed an improvement in the overall survival of the animal.
“It is significant that a honey can do this.... The manuka honey alone can inhibit cancer growth by 30 per cent, but when combined with chemotherapy, there was 61 per cent inhibition,” Dr Al Ramadi stressed.
The study, which was carried out over five years and published in the renowned scientific journal PLOS ONE early this month, is expected to stimulate further investigations on the use of manuka honey in cancer treament in humans.
“This is a very exciting area of research and we are optimistic about what these new developments may mean in terms of potential new treatments for certain types of cancer,” the professor said.
Moving forward, the research team hopes to get funding for their next course of investigations.
These include identifying the active components of the manuka honey that is inducing the growth-inhibiting effect, to understand the molecular pathways by which the honey is inducing the death of cancer cells, and the actual testing of manuka honey in humans through small-scale clinical trials.
The team aims to carry out the studies within the next two years.
But first, “we will be applying for further funding from the National Research Foundation and Terry Fox, and for ethical approval”, said Dr Al Ramadi.
This year’s Terry Fox Run, the annual cancer fundraising initiative, was held on Friday and generated Dh337,533. Some of the money raised was given to UAEU for research.
The UAEU research team is collaborating with colleagues in the departments of oncology and surgery in Tawam Hospital to continue their investigation. Tawam Hospital has the most comprehensive oncology treatment facility in the country, registering up to 80 per cent of the cancer cases in the UAE.

01-Mar-2013, 09:37 PM
Six serious office health risks

Staff reporter / 23 February 2013

Sitting at a desk all day can be hazardous to your health. Back pain, eyestrain and sleep problems can all be results of increasingly sedentary and stressful work environments.

Here are six office-related maladies and how they can be prevented, according to Dr Juned Qadir, Radiologist, Zulekha Hospital, Dubai.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome: Any motion that is repeated over and over again can cause injury or pain. But carpal tunnel syndrome isn’t just pain or soreness from too much typing. It’s the tingling, numbness; itching or even sharp pain caused when a nerve that runs through the forearm is compressed by swollen ligaments and bones in the wrist.
Stretching and other exercises may help release tension in the wrist. Wrist pads should be used as a guide for how high your wrists should be.
Lower-back pain: Sitting for hours on end, particularly if you have bad posture, can be devastating to your body over time if you don’t get moving on a regular basis. Sitting up straight but curving your back too much can be a cause of lower-back pain as well.
Besides being better aware of your posture as you’re sitting at your desk, getting regular exercise including abdominal and back strengthening activities should relieve some of the pressure on your lower back.
Other joint problems: Sitting at a desk especially shortens and tightens the hip flexors and tight hip flexors can actually contribute to back pain as well since tight hips force the pelvis to tilt forward, compressing the back.
Getting up from your desk at regular intervals and walking around a bit will help to prevent these problems.
Eyestrain: Office workers who spend hours a day staring at a computer screen might tell you that after a certain amount of time, their vision gets blurry and their eyes generally become more sensitive.
To prevent eyestrain at your computer, increase your font size so you don’t have to squint.
“The desk, in terms of bacteria, is 400 times dirtier than your toilet.” People turn their desks into bacteria cafeterias because they eat at them, but they never clean them. The phone is the dirtiest, the desktop is next, and the mouse and the computer follow.
If you frequently eat your lunch at your desk, you may want to make sure you have hand sanitizer and antibacterial wipes to wipe down your work surface daily.
Stressful situations
Stress can be a problem at work regardless of how physical your day-to-day activities are. Stress may even lead to physically violent situations.
Smaller stressors can be handled with breathing and relaxation techniques at your desk or a break outside of the office. And believe it or not, video games have been suggested as a method for easing workplace stress.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/kt-article-display-1.asp?xfile=/data/health/2013/February/health_February37.xml§ion=health#sthash.I0SqlOL2.d puf

01-Mar-2013, 09:50 PM
Olive oil, nuts dietary keys to cut heart risks: study
February 27, 2013 - Updated 27 PKT
From Web Edition

WASHINGTON: A Mediterranean diet rich in olive oil, nuts, fish, fruit, legumes and wine reduced the risk of heart attacks, strokes and deaths from heart disease by 30 percent, a major new study has found.

The study, published by the New England Journal of Medicine, followed 4,479 people in Spain -- men and women age 55 to 80 -- over a five year period, finding dramatic confirmation of previous observations of such a diet's health benefits.

"We observed that an energy unrestricted Mediterranean diet, supplemented with extra virgin olive oil or nuts, resulted in a substantial reduction in the risk of major cardiovascular events among high-risk persons," the study concluded.

It put the risk reduction at "approximately 30 percent, among high risk persons who were initially free of cardiovascular disease. These results support the benefits of the Mediterranean diet for cardiovascular risk reduction."

Participants in the study, which was led by Ramon Estruch, a professor of medicine at the University of Barcelona, were divided into three groups including a control group on a low fat diet.

One group followed a traditional Mediterranean diet supplemented by four tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil a day. A second group followed the same diet, but instead of the olive oil consumed about 30 grams a day of mixed nuts.

Participants in those two groups also ate at least three servings of fruits and two of legumes a day. They also ate fish three times a week and favored white meat like chicken instead of red meat.

They were also strongly encouraged not to eat commercially baked goods, pastries and sweets, and to limit their consumption of dairy products and processed meats.

For those who normally drank wine with their meals, their diet called for seven glasses of wine a week.

Researchers could tell whether the study participants were following the diets by measuring markers for olive oil in their urine or a blood marker for the mixed nuts.

They found that participants stuck to the Mediterranean diets, but that the low-fat control diet led to only small reductions in fat.

"The interventions were intended to improve the overall dietary pattern, but the major between-group differences involved the supplemental items," the study said.

"Thus, extra virgin olive oil and nuts were probably responsible for most of the observed benefits of the Mediterranean diets," it said.


05-Mar-2013, 04:54 AM
Mediterranean diet
boosts heart health

(AP) / 2 March 2013

A Pour on the olive oil, preferably over fish and vegetables: One of the longest and most scientific tests of a Mediterranean diet suggests this style of eating can cut the chance of suffering heart-related problems, especially strokes, in older people at high risk of them.The study lasted five years and involved about 7,500 people in Spain. Those who ate Mediterranean-style with lots of olive oil or nuts had a 30 percent lower risk of major cardiovascular problems compared to those who were told to follow a low-fat diet but who in reality, didn’t cut fat very much. Mediterranean meant lots of fruit, fish, chicken, beans, tomato sauce, salads, and wine and little baked goods and pastries.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/med-0103.jpgMediterranean diets have long been touted as heart-healthy, but that’s based on observational studies that can’t prove the point. The new research is much stronger because people were assigned diets to follow for a long time and carefully monitored. Doctors even did lab tests to verify that the Mediterranean diet subjects were consuming more olive oil or nuts as recommended.
Most of these people were taking medicines for high cholesterol and blood pressure, and researchers did not alter those proven treatments, said one study leader, Dr. Ramon Estruch of Hospital Clinic in Barcelona.
But as a first step to prevent heart problems, “we think diet is better than a drug” because it has few if any side effects, Estruch said. “Diet works.”
Results were published by the New England Journal of Medicine and were discussed at a nutrition conference in Loma Linda, California. People in the study were not given rigid menus or calorie goals because weight loss was not the aim. That could be why they found the “diets” easy to stick with — only about 7 per cent dropped out within two years. There were twice as many dropouts in the low-fat group than among those eating Mediterranean-style.
Researchers also provided the nuts and olive oil, so it didn’t cost participants anything to use these relatively pricey ingredients. The type of oil may have mattered — they used extra-virgin olive oil, which is minimally processed and richer than regular or light olive oil in the chemicals and nutrients that earlier studies have suggested are beneficial.
The study involved people ages 55 to 80, just over half of them women. All were free of heart disease at the start but were at high risk for it because of health problems — half had diabetes and most were overweight and had high cholesterol and blood pressure.
They were assigned to one of three groups: Two followed a Mediterranean diet supplemented with either extra-virgin olive oil (4 tablespoons a day) or with walnuts, hazelnuts and almonds (a fistful a day). The third group was urged to eat a low-fat diet heavy on bread, potatoes, pasta, rice, fruits, vegetables and fish and light on baked goods, nuts, oils and red meat.
Independent monitors stopped the study after nearly five years when they saw fewer problems in the two groups on Mediterranean diets.
Doctors tracked a composite of heart attacks, strokes or heart-related deaths. There were 96 of these in the Mediterranean-olive oil group, 83 in the Mediterranean-nut group and 109 in the low-fat group.
Looked at individually, stroke was the only problem where type of diet made a big difference. Diet had no effect on death rates overall.
The Mediterranean diet proved better even though its followers ate about 200 calories more per day than the low-fat group did. The study leaders now are analysing how each of the diets affected weight gain or loss and body mass index.
The Spanish government’s health research agency initiated and paid for the study, and foods were supplied by olive oil and nut producers in Spain and the California Walnut Commission. Many of the authors have extensive financial ties to food, wine and other industry groups but said the sponsors had no role in designing the study or analyzing and reporting its results.
Rachel Johnson, a University of Vermont professor who heads the American Heart Association’s nutrition committee, said the study is very strong because of the lab tests to verify oil and nut consumption and because researchers tracked actual heart attacks, strokes and deaths — not just changes in risk factors such as high cholesterol.
“At the end of the day, what we care about is whether or not disease develops,” she said. “It’s an important study.”
Rena Wing, a weight-loss expert at Brown University, noted that researchers provided the oil and nuts, and said “it’s not clear if people could get the same results from self-designed Mediterranean diets” — or if Americans would stick to them more than Europeans who are used to such foods.

05-Mar-2013, 04:56 AM
No clear benefits for kids’ blood pressure checks

(Reuters) / 3 March 2013

There’s no evidence that checking kids’ and teens’ blood pressure - and treating them if it’s high - can reduce their heart risks in adulthood, according to a new analysis.What’s more, researchers found blood pressure tests may not always be accurate among young people, or consistent from one reading to the next.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/bp_03032013.jpg“At this point, the jury is out. We just don’t know if this is worth doing or not,” said Dr. Matthew Thompson, who led the new research at Oxford University in the UK.
“We desperately need research on how to diagnose kids with high blood pressure, which kids should be treated and what are the most effective treatments.”
Thompson said although most U.S. children have their blood pressure measured at routine checkups, those readings are never taken on healthy kids in the UK.
His team reviewed the latest evidence on childhood blood pressure tests for the government-backed U.S. Preventive Services Task Force.
Thompson and his colleagues analyzed 34 studies covering diagnosis, treatment and long-term effects of high blood pressure in kids and teens. None of those answered the researchers’ central question - whether screening can help prevent or delay cardiovascular disease in adults.
Accuracy of blood pressure readings from one measurement to the next was “modest at best,” according to Thompson.
“The false positive rate… means that most children who screen positive won’t actually have high blood pressure,” he told Reuters Health.
Among studies that tracked children and teens over time, researchers found anywhere from 19 to 65 percent of youth with high blood pressure also had hypertension as adults.
Seven studies tested seven different drugs for kids with hypertension and found they typically weren’t any better at lowering blood pressure than a drug-free placebo pill. But those studies lasted only a few weeks - and children with hypertension would likely take the drugs for years.
“That’s really not good enough evidence to know if they’re effective and safe for decades,” Thompson said.
Programs aiming to change young people’s lifestyle, such as by encouraging them to be more active or eat less salt, also didn’t have a clear effect, the researchers wrote this week in Pediatrics.
‘Part of standard care’
Based on the findings, the Task Force concluded in a draft recommendation that there isn’t enough evidence to balance the benefits and harms of screening young people to prevent future disease.
The U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute recommends all children routinely get their blood pressure measured. But another recent review also concluded there isn’t enough evidence to support blood pressure checks for kids, further stoking controversy on the issue.
Dr. Bonita Falkner, a pediatrician at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia who has studied hypertension, said she doesn’t think the findings should change practice.
“It remains unknown how much hypertension in childhood contributes to (adult high blood pressure), but there is evidence it begins in childhood,” Falkner, who wasn’t involved in the review, told Reuters Health.
The researchers agreed there’s a need for more studies to address the information gaps related to childhood blood pressure checks.
“It’s been recommended for some time now that pediatricians measure blood pressure in children, starting at age three, as part of routine health assessments,” she said. “It’s pretty much become part of standard care.”
Thompson said until more research is done, it’s unclear what the right answer is on blood pressure checks for youth.
“To me, the evidence shows that it’s not clear that screening or not screening is good or bad,” he said.

08-Mar-2013, 10:43 PM

09-Mar-2013, 02:20 AM

18-Mar-2013, 07:38 PM
Bitter gourd juice destroys pancreatic cancer cells: Researchers

(IANS) / 13 March 2013

In a finding that could provide a new tool in cancer therapy, researchers have shown that the juice of bitter gourd (karela) effectively kills pancreatic cancer cells.A University of Colorado cancer study published this week in the journal Carcinogenesis shows that bitter gourd juice restricts the ability of pancreatic cancer cells to metabolise glucose, thus cutting the cells' energy source and eventually killing them.

"Three years ago, researchers showed the effect of bitter gourd extract on breast cancer cells only in a petri dish. This study goes much, much farther. We used the juice -- people especially in Asian countries are already consuming it in quantity. We show that it affects the glucose metabolism pathway to restrict energy and kill pancreatic cancer cells," says Rajesh Agarwal, PhD, co-programme leader of Cancer Prevention and Control at the CU Cancer Center and professor at the Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences.

Diabetes tends to presage pancreatic cancer and bitter gourd has been shown to control type-II diabetes, and has been used for centuries against diabetes in the folk medicines of China and India.

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/ora_03132013.jpgFollowing this line of thinking, Agarwal and colleagues wondered what would happen if they closed out the middle man of diabetes and directly explored the link between bitter gourd and pancreatic cancer, reports Science Daily.

The result, Agarwal says, is, "alteration in metabolic events in pancreatic cancer cells and an activation of the AMP-activated protein kinase, an enzyme that indicates low energy levels in the cells".

Perhaps not coincidentally, bitter gourd also regulates insulin secretion by pancreatic beta cells. After studies in cell cultures, the group showed that mouse models of pancreatic cancer that were fed bitter melon juice were 60 percent less likely to develop the disease than controls.

"It's a very exciting finding," Agarwal says. "Many researchers are engineering new drugs to target cancer cells' ability to supply themselves with energy, and here we have a naturally-occurring compound that may do just that."

18-Mar-2013, 07:39 PM
Sip green tea, coffee to protect your heart

(IANS) / 17 March 2013

Scientists say green tea and coffee, if made a regular part of the diet, could benefit the heart, according to research conducted in Japan and published in the US.Green tea and coffee may help lower your risk of having a stroke, especially when both are a regular part of your diet, according to research published in Stroke: Journal of the American Heart Association.

”This is the first large-scale study to examine the combined effects of both green tea and coffee on stroke risks,” said Yoshihiro Kokubo, lead author of the study at Japan’s National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Centre.

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/coffe_17032013.jpg”You may make a small but positive lifestyle change to help lower the risk of stroke by adding daily green tea to your diet.”

They found that the more green tea or coffee people drink, the lower their stroke risks, reports Science Daily.

”The regular action of drinking tea and coffee, largely benefits cardiovascular health because it partly keeps blood clots from forming,” Kokubo said.

Tea and coffee are the most popular drinks in the world after water, suggesting that these results may apply in other countries too.

It’s unclear how green tea affects stroke risks. A compound group known as catechins may provide some protection. Catechins have an antioxidant anti-inflammatory effect, increasing plasma antioxidant capacity and anti-thrombogenic (anti-clotting) effects.

Some chemicals in coffee include chlorogenic acid, thus cutting stroke risks by lowering the chances of developing type 2 diabetes.

Further research could clarify how the interaction between coffee and green tea might help further lower stroke risks, Kokubo said.

18-Mar-2013, 07:41 PM
Distracted eaters tend to take in more calories
(Reuters) / 18 March 2013

If you’re watching TV, stay away from the pretzels or chips, alluring as the temptation may be.People who eat meals or snacks while watching TV, playing games or reading tend to consume more calories in a sitting, and especially later in the day, according to a UK review of two dozen past studies.
‘Some studies have individually shown this before, but the evidence has never been put together,’ said lead author Eric Robinson from the University of Liverpool, who said the amount consumed could rise by up to 50 percent with distracted eating.
But while distracted eating can really up the calorie count, summoning up memories of what was eaten in a previous meal decreased the amount of food eaten later.
Researchers, whose findings appeared in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, broadly categorized eating patterns as ‘attentive,’ such as sitting quietly and recording what was eaten during a meal, or the exact opposite - ‘distracted.’ Distracted eaters do not pay close attention to food and are not as aware of how much they have eaten.
‘Even though we make decisions about what and when to eat with apparent ease all the time, these decisions are actually very complex and can be easily disrupted,’ said Suzanne Higgs, a study co-author and psychologist at the University of Birmingham in the UK.
Robinson and his colleagues searched the scientific literature and found 24 studies conducted between 1997 and 2011 that met their main criterion of involving an experimenter who actively manipulated participants’ attention, memory and awareness of eating food.
All of the studies were tightly controlled and monitored, but each had different methods of manipulating participants’ attention and awareness.
For example, in one study adult men and women watched television while eating. In another, participants snacked on pistachio nuts and experimenters immediately removed the nut shells from view.
The experiments ranges in size from 14 participants to 122, and 18 of the 24 studies were done with university students as subjects. Nearly all of the men and women in the experiments were normal weight, rather than overweight or obese.
The analysis suggests statistically significant differences between participants who ate attentively and those who ate while distracted, Higgs said.
On average, eating while distracted increased the amount eaten by about 10 percent. But it also increased the amount a person ate at a later meal by more than 25 percent.
In contrast, enhancing memories of food consumed at an earlier meal reduced the amount consumed at a subsequent meal by about 10 percent. Enhancing awareness of the food being consumed at the current meal did not, however, change how people ate at that meal.
Still, in light of the overall results, the authors think that attentive eating techniques could be incorporated into weight loss regimens as an alternative to intense calorie counting, such as developing a mobile phone app that prompts people to eat with more attention and awareness.
But practices similar to attentive eating have been part of weight loss programs for decades, said Michael Lower of Drexel University, who was not involved in the study.
‘The learned habits tend to dissipate after the program ends and most individuals regain the weight they lost,’ he said. SOURCE: http://bit.lyYfR5Gd (http://bit.lyyfr5gd/)

19-Mar-2013, 12:50 AM
Always hungry? Study says olive oil helps make you feel full

(IANS) / 17 March 2013

Olive oil leads to satiety, shows a study that points out the mechanism behind it.Reduced-fat food products are gaining popularity. More and more people are choosing “light” products in an attempt to lose weight, or at least in the hope that they would not gain pounds.
But whether these products are effective or not is a matter of dispute: while it is true that they contain fewer calories, people tend to overcompensate by eating more if they do not feel full.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/salad-17032013.jpgNow a study has shown how “natural” oils and fats regulate the sensation of feeling full after eating, with olive oil leading the way.
So what makes this oil so effective?
Work groups at Germany’s Technische Universitat Munchen (TUM) under professor Peter Schieberle and at the University of Vienna under professor Veronika Somoza studied four different edible fats and oils—lard, butterfat, rapeseed oil and olive oil.
Over a period of three months, the study participants ate 500 gm of low-fat yoghurt enriched with one of the four fats or oils every day—as a supplement to their normal diet, reports Science Daily.
“Olive oil had the biggest satiety effect,” said Schieberle.
“The olive oil group showed a higher concentration of the satiety hormone serotonin in their blood. Subjectively speaking, these participants also reported that they found the olive oil yoghurt very filling,” he added.
During the study period, no member of this group recorded an increase in their body fat percentage or their weight.
“Our findings show that aroma is capable of regulating satiety,” Schieberle said. “We hope that this work will pave the way for the development of more effective reduced-fat food products that are nonetheless satiating,” he said.

21-Mar-2013, 08:49 PM
Stress can lead to Alzheimer's!

(IANS) / 19 March 2013

Sustained stress can cause Alzheimer's diseaese in advanced years.A research on mice has indicated there is an increased risk of dementia in case one remains constantly stressed. Sara Bengtsson, a PhD student from Umea University, in Sweden, tested her theory on mice and found that mice with higher levels of the hormone in their brains suffered impaired learning and memory, Daily Mail reported.

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/god_03192013.jpgThey also had increased brain levels of beta-amyloids -- the proteins that form plaque deposits in the brains of Alzheimer's sufferers.

Alzheimer is the most common form of dementia, a general term for memory loss and other intellectual abilities serious enough to interfere with daily life.

The study has found that stress hormones, which are elevated in the brain when a person is harassed, inhibit brain activity. If the hormone levels are chronically elevated, this can lead to the development of Alzheimer's disease.

Bengtsson believes that the effect of stress hormones on the brain could mean the difference between living independently and needing to be put into care.

However, Simon Ridley, head of Research at Alzheimer's Research UK, said: "It's important to remember this research was not carried out in people.

Some research has already highlighted a possible link between chronic stress, cognitive decline and the development of Alzheimer's, and further study in people is needed to fully investigate these links.

The latest research comes just after another study which suggested disrupted sleep could be one of the first signs of Alzheimer's disease.

Researchers at Washington University found sleep was disrupted in people who had early Alzheimer's disease but did not yet have the memory loss or other cognitive problems characteristic of the full-blown disease.

21-Mar-2013, 08:59 PM
Alzheimer's blood test could give early diagnosis http://news.bbcimg.co.uk/media/images/66285000/jpg/_66285289_alzheimer_s_disease.jpg

British researchers have developed a test to detect Alzheimer's disease in its earliest stages.
It works by looking for a combination of "markers" in the blood which are different in healthy people and those with the disease.
Delegates at the Alzheimer's Research UK Conference heard that the University of Nottingham is now developing a quick and easy test to do in clinics.
It could mean much earlier diagnosis and better treatments, they said.
The test uses some proteins that have been strongly linked with Alzheimer's disease, such as amyloid and APOE.
But through careful analysis of blood from people with the disease, as well as those with early-stage memory problems, the researchers detected some other markers that were suggestive of the disease.

“Start QuoteWhen used alongside other diagnostic techniques, a blood test like this could be a real help” Dr Eric Karran Alzheimer's Research UK

Most notably, some proteins related to inflammation seem to have been added to increase the power of the test.
Promising Prof Kevin Morgan from the University of Nottingham said they still had to validate the test and it could be a decade before it was used in patients.
But he added that the combination of markers they had found was looking very promising.
"Our findings are exciting because they show that it is technically possible to distinguish between healthy people and those with Alzheimer's using a blood test.
"As blood tests are a fast and easy way of aiding diagnosis, we are really encouraged by these findings and the potential they hold for the future."
He said there were several ways the test could benefit patients, including giving people a definitive diagnosis, which was not always possible at the moment.
It could also direct future therapies to make sure patients were getting the most appropriate treatment, he explained.
Screening Potentially, it could be a "cheap and easy pre-screen" test which enabled Alzheimer's to be picked up before symptoms appeared, he said.
"The way we see it working is you can test people and it will tell them if they have the all-clear, or if they are medium- or high-risk.
"If they are medium-risk, they can be monitored closely and high-risk patients can be referred to a specialist for more in-depth testing."
Dr Eric Karran, director of Research at Alzheimer's Research UK, said: "Giving people with dementia an accurate diagnosis is not always easy, and so building up our armoury of diagnostic techniques is vital.
"While there is still some way to go before a test like this could become available, the results are promising.
"When used alongside other diagnostic techniques, a blood test like this could be a real help."


23-Mar-2013, 01:39 AM
Traffic pollution may cause 14% of childhood asthma
(AFP) / 22 March 2013

PARIS — As much as 14 percent of chronic childhood asthma may be caused by people living near busy roads and exposed to traffic pollution, a study in 10 European cities found Friday.The study, released by the European Respiratory Journal, matched local health data with exposure to traffic pollution in Barcelona, Bilbao, Brussels, Granada, Ljubljana, Rome, Seville, Stockholm, Valencia and Vienna.
They calculated proximity to busy roads, defined as carrying 10,000 vehicles per day.
“We estimated that an average of 33,200 asthma cases (14 percent of all asthmatic children) were attributable to near-road traffic-related pollutants,” the researchers wrote.
“In other words these cases would not have occurred if no one lived within the buffer zone or if those pollutants did not exist.”
The results were comparable, the authors said, to the burden associated with passive smoking — which the World Health Organisation blames for four to 18 percent of asthma cases in children.
Of the 10 cities studied, a third of the combined population was estimated to live within 75 metres of a busy road, and more than half within 150 metres.
The team also measured traffic pollution’s impact on coronary heart disease among older adults, and estimated that 28 percent of such cases may be attributable to near-road exposure.
“Despite uncertainty and limitations, our results indicate that near-road traffic related pollution may be responsible for a large but preventable burden of chronic diseases and related acute morbidities in urban areas,” said the study authors.

28-Mar-2013, 10:04 PM
FDA approves new multiple sclerosis capsules
(AP) / 28 March 2013

The US Food and Drug Administration said Wednesday it approved a new drug from Biogen Idec to control multiple sclerosis in adults with hard-to-treat forms of the disease.The twice-a-day capsules, called Tecfidera, offer a new option for multiple sclerosis, a debilitating disease in which the body attacks its own nervous system. US -based Biogen Idec already sells two other drugs for the disease, but both require injections.
There is no cure for multiple sclerosis and most patients experience relapses of symptoms, including loss of balance, weakness in arms and legs, and blurred vision. Over time patients usually become weaker and less coordinated. More than 2 million people worldwide have the disease, with about 400,000 of them in the U.S., according to Biogen.
The FDA said it approved Tecfidera based on two studies showing patients taking the drug had fewer relapses than patients taking a dummy pill.
The approval gives Biogen a new product in an increasingly crowded field of multiple sclerosis drugs.
The biotech drugmaker already sells the once-a-week multiple sclerosis injection Avonex. It also markets the once-a-month injection Tysabri through a partnership with Elan Corp. PLC of Ireland. However, Tysabri’s severe side effects have curtailed its use.
Tecfidera is designed to be taken orally, which could make it a preferred option for patients and doctors.
A Biogen executive said Wednesday that its three drugs would be used to treat different groups of patients.
‘Multiple sclerosis is a reasonably complex disease and we think there are a lot of needs out there,’ said Tony Kingsely, a vice president at Biogen. ‘By having three drugs out there I think we can address a lot of those needs.’
Kinglsey said the company will announce the pricing of the drug when it begins shipping in the next week.
Novartis launched the first pill-based multiple sclerosis drug, Gilenya, in March 2011. Sanofi won FDA approval for a second pill, its drug Aubagio, last September.
The top-selling drug for the disease worldwide is Copaxone, which is made by Teva Pharmaceutical Industries. That injection had sales of nearly $4 billion last year, according to Teva’s latest financial report.
Avonex and Tysabri had annual sales of $2.7 billion and $1.5 billion in 2011, the most recent year for which Biogen has reported annual sales.
Biogen Idec Inc. shares rose $5.59, or 3.2 percent, to close Wednesday at $182.68.

28-Mar-2013, 10:06 PM
Itching is no joking matter
Staff Reporter / 23 March 2013

Itch, scientifically termed pruritus, is an unpleasant sensation that provokes a desire to scratch, explains Dr Aswathi Prasad, Dermatologist, Zulekha Hospital, Sharjah.Like pain it serves as a protective mechanism against external and internal agents. Pruritus can be a symptom of a skin disease or of an underlying systemic disease. More than 50 per cent of patients attending a skin clinic complain of itching and more than 15 per cent with generalised itching have an underlying internal cause.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/dr_23032013.jpgSevere itching, though it is a butt of jokes, can be as disabling as intractable pain. Itching can be localised, generalised, paroxysmal or unremitting and can be qualified as tingling, burning or pricking.
Itch is mediated by a complex neurophysiological reaction under the control of distinct nerve path ways. Certain chemicals are also responsible like histamines and cytokines. When it itches you scratch, but there are hundreds of possible causes for the ordinary itch!!
Some of the common causes of itching
Dry skin

Allergies to various factors in the environment including food and drugs
Insect bites, skin Infestations and infections, fungal, bacterial, viral
Specific skin diseases including some types of skin cancers
Psychiatric disorders, drug addictions, anorexia nervosa
Nerve disorders – multiple sclerosis, diabetes mellitus, shingles Internal diseases:
Liver disease, kidney failure, iron deficiency anaemia, thyroid problems, cancers like lymphoma, leukaemia

Complications of itching
Prolonged itching may lead to skin changes with thick dark leathery appearance. Sometimes raw areas with oozing can occur, even a secondary bacterial infection, permanent scars or change in skin colour.
When to see a specialist

Itching lasting more than two weeks not improving with self-care measures
Severe and uncomfortable itching disturbing sleep and other daily activities
Cannot be explained or no visible skin problems
Affects whole body
Associated with other symptoms like fever, weight loss, change in bowel and bladder habits or skin redness.

When you decide to meet your doctor keep a detailed record of all the medications taken including over-the-counter drugs and home remedies, history of any changes in daily routine, food habits, any worsening factors, travel details and personal habits.
An examination of the skin as well as the entire body systems might be necessary to detect subtle evidence of certain skin diseases. It is the patient who presents with itching with no associated rash who can pose a particularly challenging therapeutic dilemma.
Treatment – Anti-histamines play the major role in relieving almost all itchy disorders. Topical smoothening agents and anti-pruritic medications are also prescribed for symptomatic relief. Long term relief is achieved only if the underlying cause is identified and treated.

01-Apr-2013, 07:06 PM
US OKs first-of-a-kind diabetes drug

(AP) / 30 March 2013

The US Food and Drug Administration says it has approved a first-of-a-kind diabetes drug from Johnson & Johnson that uses a new method to lower blood sugar.http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/diabetic_30032013.jpgThe agency cleared J&J’s Invokana tablets for adults with Type 2 diabetes.
The drug is a once-a-day medicine designed to lower blood sugar levels in patients by eliminating more sugar in their urine. The drug works by blocking the reabsorption of sugar by the kidneys, which occurs at higher levels in patients with diabetes.
J&J has touted the drug as the first in a new class of medications to help address the growing U.S. diabetes epidemic. The drug differs from older drugs that work by decreasing the amount of sugar absorbed from food and stored in the liver.

01-Apr-2013, 07:07 PM
Hypertension is a silent killer

(Staff Reporter) / 30 March 2013

As our heart beats, it forces blood through our arteries. This force is called blood pressure. If the pressure is too high, it is called hypertension (HTN) or high blood pressure.High blood pressure may mean that your heart has to work harder to pump blood. Your arteries may be narrow or stiff. The extra work puts you at risk for heart disease, stroke, and other problems.
HTN is dangerous because it does not cause any symptoms in majority of patients; therefore, they remain unaware of it. That is why it is called a silent killer.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/dr_30032013.jpgAccording to Dr. Rupesh Singh, Specialist Cardiologist, Zulekha Hospital, Sharjah, about 50 per cent of those suffering from blood pressure are not aware of it and 60 per cent of those who are aware of it are not adequately controlling it.
Blood pressure consists of two numbers, a higher number over a lower, 110/72, for example. It is stated as “110 over 72.” The ideal is below 120 for the top number (systolic) and under 80 for the bottom (diastolic).
Dr Singh suggests one should pay close attention to blood pressure if he or she has certain conditions such as:

Heart failure.
Prior heart attack.
Chronic kidney disease.
Prior stroke.
Multiple risk factors for heart disease.

Most people have essential hypertension which means that there is no a specific cause for high blood pressure. This group of patients needs anti-hypertensive medication for indefinite period. Their blood pressure can be controlled but cannot be cured. This type of high blood pressure may be lowered by changing lifestyle factors such as:

Lack of exercise.
Excessive weight.
Drug/tobacco/alcohol use.
Use of salt.

About 10 per cent of hypertensive people have certain specific cause for high blood pressure such as kidney disease, endocrine problem etc. This type of hypertension is called secondary hypertension and in this group if cause is corrected, blood pressure is cured.
Sometimes high blood pressure complicates the pregnancy. It usually happens after 20 weeks of pregnancy and associated with leakage of protein in urine.
Therefore it is important for pregnant females to have regular checkups.
Most people do not have symptoms from high blood pressure until it has caused damage to the body.
When a cause has been identified, treatment for high blood pressure is directed at the cause. It usually starts with life style modification in form of salt restricted diet, regular exercise and weight reduction. If these measures fail, medications are started. There are a large number of medications to treat HTN.
This fall into several categories and your caregiver will help you select the medicines that are best for you. Medications may have side effects but benefit of controlling blood pressure is much higher.

01-Apr-2013, 07:08 PM
Cut salt intake, exercise to avoid high BP

(IANS) / 31 March 2013

Shruti Jain was a busy working mother juggling children, work and household chores with aplomb, until she suddenly collapsed in office one day. Diagnosed with a stroke, she had to undergo a six-month recuperation and paid a hefty fee at a private hospital.Little did the 35-year-old marketing executive know that she had been suffering from hypertension, which had gone undetected for a long time, ultimately leading to the stroke she suffered.
Going by the lifestyles most of us lead, doctors say hypertension or high blood pressure (BP) can affect any of us and should be taken seriously as it is a silent killer.
http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/salt_31032013.jpg“A lot of Indians fall into the pre-hypertension category where they think they are absolutely fine and don’t pay attention to their rising blood pressure,” Ravi Kasliwal, chairman of the division of clinical and prevention cardio diseases at Medanta - The Medicity Hospital in Gurgaon, adjoining Delhi, told IANS.
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), high BP affects every third person above the age of 18 years.
Given the seriousness of the problem, WHO has selected hypertension as its theme for 2013, with special focus on it on World Health Day on April 7.
Blaming Indian food habits and a sedantary lifestyle, Kasliwal said: “Most of us grab snacks like namkeens and samosas when hungry between meals. Not only do these have a high salt content but they are also sources of trans-fats.”
Experts estimate that the number of patients in India with high BP is likely to rise from about 140 million in 2008 to nearly 215 million by 2030 along with an increase in the risk of complications such as heart attacks, strokes, kidney problems and other serious illnesses.
The problem is further compounded as high BP is a silent killer because it can remain undetected and manifest years later as a serious heart problem, say doctors.
In India, experts say a large number of people are in the pre-hypertension category - BP of 130/90 against the normal range of 120/90. People with BP of above 140/90 are considered to be in the hypertension category.
High BP, as of today, remains inadequately controlled in India as a large number of cases go undetected.
“The incidence of high blood pressure ranges from 20 to 39 percent in urban areas and 12 to 17 percent in rural areas,” says Sailesh Mohan, senior research scientist and associate professor in the Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI).
PHFI is a public-private initiative that works on promoting health issues.
High BP is, however, both preventable and treatable.
For many people, lifestyle changes such as cutting down on salt; eating a balanced diet; avoiding harmful use of alcohol; getting regular exercise; and avoiding tobacco use are sufficient to control blood pressure.
For others, medication is required, which is effective when taken as prescribed.
Rohit Sobti, a physician with regional medical services in the WHO, said it is easy to prevent the problem if people just control their diet and change their lifestyle.
“Merely controlling dietary and lifestyle regime can easily avert any complications arising out of high blood pressure. It is important to get BP checked on a regular basis and avoid self-medication,” Sobti told IANS.
Kasliwal said a simple measure like restricting the salt intake per person to less than five grams per day and half an hour of exercise can help control hypertension that is assuming epic proportions in the country.
He also said that coronary as well as cerebral strokes and also dementia in old age can be a direct result of high blood pressure.
One of the voluntary targets proposed by WHO and likely to be approved by the World Health Assembly in May this year is to achieve a 30 per cent reduction in average salt consumption by 2025 from the consumption level in the year 2010.
There were nine global targets, which may be adopted. These included reducing deaths due to hypertension by 25 percent by 2025, encouraging physical activity and avoiding tobacco, Sobti said.
“Unhealthy lifestyles are killing people,” said Renu Garg, regional advisor in non-communicable disease, WHO regional office for South-East Asia.
“Most of us lead a sedantary lifestyle, eat unhealthy food and don’t exercise. Indians urgently need to take measures like reducing salt intake, exercising and avoiding tobacco and excessive alcohol,” Garg added.

02-Apr-2013, 08:07 PM
Scientists developing blood-cleansing technology
(IANS) / 1 April 2013

US scientists are developing a blood-cleansing technology to treat life-threatening blood infections in critically-injured soldiers and patients.The Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard University announced Saturday that it has been awarded a $9.25-million contract to further advance the blood-cleansing technology developed with the Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) support, reports Science Daily.

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/blood_0104213.jpgThe DARPA has also asked the institute to help accelerate the technology’s translation to humans as a new type of sepsis therapy.

The device will be used to treat bloodstream infections that are the leading cause of death in critically-ill patients and soldiers injured in combat.

To rapidly cleanse the blood of pathogen, the patient’s blood is mixed with magnetic nano-beads coated with a genetically-engineered version of a human blood ‘opsonin’ protein that binds to a wide variety of bacteria, fungi, viruses, parasites, and toxins.

It is then flowed through micro-channels in the device where magnetic forces pull out the bead-bound pathogen without removing human blood cells, proteins, fluids, or electrolytes—much like a human spleen does. The cleansed blood then flows back to the patient.

‘In just a few years we have been able to develop a suite of new technologies, and to integrate them to create a powerful new device that could potentially transform the way we treat sepsis,’ said Wyss founding director and project leader Don Ingber.

‘The continued support from DARPA enables us to advance our device manufacturing capabilities and to obtain validation in large animal models, which is precisely what is required to enable this technology to be moved towards testing in humans,’ Ingber added.

02-Apr-2013, 08:08 PM
Eating fish linked to longer life
(AFP) / 2 April 2013

People age 65 and older who eat fish may live an average of two years longer than people who do not consume the omega-3 fatty acids found mainly in seafood, a US study suggested on Monday.People with higher levels of omega-3 fatty acids also had an overall risk of dying that was 27 percent lower, and a risk of dying from heart disease that was 35 percent lower than counterparts who had lower blood levels, said the study.
The research was led by scientists at the Harvard School of Public Health and was published in the Annals of Internal Medicine.
While other studies have demonstrated a link between omega-3 fatty acids and lower risk of heart disease, this research examined records of older people to determine any link between fish-eating and death risk.
Researchers scanned 16 years of data on about 2,700 US adults aged 65 or older. Those considered for the study were not taking fish oil supplements, to eliminate any confusion over the use of supplements or dietary differences.
Those with the highest blood levels of omega-3 fatty acids found mainly in fish like salmon, tuna, halibut, sardines, herring and mackerel, had the lowest risk of dying from any cause, and lived an average of 2.2 years longer than those with low levels.
Researchers identified docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) as most strongly related to lower risk of coronary heart disease death.
Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) was strongly linked to lower risk of nonfatal heart attack, and docosapentaenoic acid (DPA) was most strongly associated with lower risk of dying from a stroke.
The findings persisted after researchers adjusted for demographic, lifestyle and diet factors.
‘Our findings support the importance of adequate blood omega-3 levels for cardiovascular health, and suggest that later in life these benefits could actually extend the years of remaining life,’ said lead author Dariush Mozaffarian, associate professor in the Department of Epidemiology at Harvard School of Public Health.
‘The biggest bang-for-your-buck is for going from no intake to modest intake, or about two servings of fatty fish per week,’ said Mozaffarian.

09-Apr-2013, 07:53 AM
Detox diets are new trend, but need supervision

(IANS) / 8 April 2013

Detox diet plans are gradually becoming a trend among diet freaks and health conscious citizens, says an expert but cautions that such regimes should be undertaken only under the supervision of dieticians.Detox diet is basically an intake plan to cleanse the system by giving the stomach a break from excess which has accumulated and the toxins that are in the body.

http://www.khaleejtimes.com/images/juice_0804213.jpg‘Around 65-70 percent of my clients want to opt for a detox diet. But we talk to them to understand the requirement and recommend it if only it is required,’ says Namita Jain, a dietician and clinical wellness specialist associated with the Bombay Hospital in Mumbai.

‘But it has to be done under the supervision of a dietician and it has to be done in a scientific way. A lot of people do it on their own,’ Jain told.

‘They will starve one day and next day eat and binge, and that really takes a toll on their health,’ Jain said on the sidelines of the inauguration of the first Diet Mantra Clinic, a wellness clinic in Kolkata.

‘These are special diet plans to clean the system, when you have eaten too much... It is not at all recommended for children or youngsters and only if a dietician suggests one should start it,’ she said.

According to jain, there are one-three-five and seven days plans for detox diets.

‘It has become a recent trend in India but it existed since long all over the world. Spas the world over have had such diet plans to get rid of all the toxins in one’s body.’

Detox diets may involve consuming extremely limited quantity and type of foods like only water or juice, or eliminating certain foods like fats or processed foods from the diet, according to experts.

Jain said dieting and exercising together are the mantra for keeping one fit. ‘The trick to getting into shape is 80 percent diet and 20 percent exercise. We also advocate walking and bringing in at least one hour of exercise daily to lose weight,’ Jain told.

11-Apr-2013, 08:58 PM
Exercise can keep blood sugar problems at bay

(IANS) / 9 April 2013

Scientists of the Life Sciences Institute at the University of Michigan have shown that growth of white muscle due to exercise can help keep blood sugar level in check.Researchers have challenged a long-held belief that whitening of skeletal muscle in diabetes is harmful.

In fact, the white muscle that increases with resistance training, age and diabetes helps keep blood sugar in check.

”We wanted to figure out the relationship between muscle types and body metabolism, how the muscles were made, and also what kind of influence they have on diseases like Type 2 diabetes,” said Jiandie Lin, Life Sciences Institute faculty member and associate professor at the UM Medical School.

Lin’s findings were published online April 7 in Nature Medicine.

People with diabetes see whitening of muscles.

”For a long time, the red-to-white shift was thought to make muscle less responsive to insulin, a hormone that lowers blood sugar,” Lin said. “But this idea is far from proven. You lose red muscle when you age or develop diabetes, but is that really the culprit?” Lin said.

White muscle dominates in the bodies of weight-lifters and sprinters - people who require short, intense bursts of energy.

”Most people have a mix of red and white muscles,” Lin said.