Tuesday, October 23, 2007

The Many Benefits of Breakfast

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The Many Benefits of Breakfast


The right breakfast foods can help you concentrate, give you strength - even help you maintain a healthy weight.


Your mother was right: Breakfast really is the most important meal of the day. Not only does it give you energy to start a new day, but breakfast is linked to many health benefits, including weight control and improved performance.

Studies show that eating a healthy breakfast (as opposed to the kind containing doughnuts) can help give you:

  •  A more nutritionally complete diet, higher in nutrients, vitamins and mineral
  • Improved concentration and performance in the classroom or the boardroom
  • More strength and endurance to engage in physical activity
  • Lower cholesterol levels

Eating breakfast is important for everyone, but is especially so for children and adolescents. According to the American Dietetic Association, children who eat breakfast perform better in the classroom and on the playground, with better concentration, problem-solving skills, and eye-hand coordination.

Breakfast Benefit: Weight Control

Many studies, in both adults and children, have shown that breakfast eaters tend to weigh less than breakfast skippers.

Why? One theory suggests that eating a healthy breakfast can reduce hunger throughout the day, and help people make better food choices at other meals. While it might seem you could save calories by skipping breakfast, this is not an effective strategy. Typically, hunger gets the best of breakfast-skippers, and they eat more at lunch and throughout the day.

Another theory behind the breakfast-weight control link implies that eating breakfast is part of a healthy lifestyle that includes making wise food choices and balancing calories with exercise. For example, consider the successful losers followed by the National Weight Control Registry, all of whom have lost at least 30 pounds and kept it off at least one year. Some 80% of the people in the Registry regularly eat breakfast (and also follow a calorie-controlled, low-fat diet).

It's worth noting that most studies linking breakfast to weight control loss looked at a healthy breakfast containing protein and/or whole grains -- not meals loaded with fat and calories.

Make Lean Protein Part of Your Breakfast

Adding a little lean protein to your breakfast may be just the boost you need to help keep you feeling full until lunchtime.

"Protein blunts your hunger the most, and is the most satiating," Purdue University researcher Wayne Campbell, PhD, tells WebMD.

And a traditional breakfast of eggs may be one of the best ways to get your morning protein. While eggs are not always associated with weight loss, they contain some of the highest-quality protein.

In a study presented at the 2007 Experimental Biology meeting, researchers at Pennington Biomedical Research Center compared weight loss in women who ate either two eggs or a bagel for breakfast. The two breakfast meals were identical in calories and volume.

"Compared to the bagel eaters, overweight women who ate two eggs for breakfast five times a week for eight weeks as part of a low-fat, reduced-calorie diet, lost 65% more weight, reduced waist circumference by 83%, reported higher energy levels, and had no significant difference in their ... blood cholesterol or triglyceride levels," reports researcher Nikhil V. Dhurandhar, PhD.

Another study, reported in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition, also substantiates eggs' ability to satisfy hunger.

"Both these studies show that when people eat eggs at breakfast, they felt more satisfied and consumed fewer calories throughout the day, compared to those who ate a primarily carbohydrate meal like a bagel," explains Dhurandhar.

But what about the cholesterol in eggs? A large egg contains 75 calories, 6 grams of protein, and 212 mg cholesterol. According to the American Heart Association (AHA), healthy people can eat an egg a day.

"It should be noted in our study that none of the women had increases in blood lipids, confirming that healthy adults on a low-fat diet can enjoy eggs without significantly impacting their risk of heart disease," says Dhundar.

Another study, reported in Obesity Research, found that women who added a little lean protein to their breakfast (in the form of a slice of Canadian bacon added to an egg sandwich made with an English muffin) felt less hunger during the next four hours than those who ate a breakfast without protein.

All the participants lost about 18 pounds over the course of the study, but the group eating more protein - about 30% of total calories - kept more lean muscle than the group who ate the same number of calories but less protein.

Experts note that lean muscle mass is more metabolically active, and thus helps with weight management.

Breakfast Cereal and Weight Control

Many studies have also shown that when breakfast cereal is consumed as part of an overall healthful lifestyle, it can play a role in maintaining a healthy body weight.

A Harvard study of more than 17,000 men found that those who frequently ate breakfast cereal -- both refined grain and whole-grain types -- consistently weighed less than those who rarely or never ate breakfast cereal.

Another study, published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association, evaluated the diets of adults and found that breakfasts of ready-to-eat cereal were associated with lower BMIs in women than other, higher-fat breakfast meals.

Choosing the Right Breakfast Foods

This just goes to show how important it is to choose the right foods for breakfast. A healthy breakfast meal should contain a variety of foods, including fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low- or non-fat dairy, and lean protein.

Even if you think you don't have time to eat breakfast, there are grab-and-go options that fill the bill. Some quick and healthy choices include:

  • A veggie omelet and a piece of whole-wheat toast
  • A whole-wheat English muffin with low-fat cheese, a scrambled egg, and slice of tomato or lean ham
  • Smoothie made with fruit and low-fat yogurt
  • Salmon on 1/2 whole-grain bagel with light cream cheese
  • Whole-grain cereal with fresh fruit and low-fat milk
  • Oatmeal made with skim milk, raisins and nuts, with 4 ounces of orange juice
  • Low-fat yogurt and a piece of fresh fruit
  • Yogurt smoothie and breakfast bar
  • Hard-boiled egg and a banana






Thursday, October 18, 2007

Right to Emergency Care !

IMPORTANT: Supreme Court Judgment (India)

Right to Emergency Care :

Date of Judgment: 23/02/2007.

Case No.: Appeal (civil) 919 of 2007.

The Supreme Court has ruled that all injured persons especially in the case of road traffic accidents, assaults, etc., when brought to a hospital / medical centre , have to be offered first aid, stabilized and shifted to a higher centre / government centre if required. It is only after this that the hospital can demand payment or complete police formalities. In case you are a bystander and wish to help someone in an accident, please go ahead and do so. Your responsibility ends as soon as you leave the person at the hospital. The hospital bears the responsibility of informing the police, first aid, etc.

Please do inform your family and friends about these basic rights so that we all know what to expect and what to do in the hour of need. Please not only go ahead and forward this message but implement it in real life too!!!!

For more info and comments log on to  DISASTER AWARENESS 

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Why Banked Blood Goes Bad - Sent Using Google Toolbar

Why Banked Blood Goes Bad
Monday, Oct. 08, 2007 By ALICE PARK
Blood Bank Donor
Donated blood sits on a blood bank shelf.
Sean Justice / Corbis
It's been called the gift of life, but for many of the five million patients who receive blood transfusions every year, it can actually do more harm than good.

It's a problem that doctors have been wrestling with for several years, as study after study shows a disturbing spike in heart disease and death in patients receiving transfusions. The trend affects almost every group of critically ill patients — from trauma sufferers in the ER to heart attack victims, patients with anemia and those undergoing chemotherapy. This increase in death and heart disease, doctors say, is unrelated to infectious blood-borne diseases or allergic reactions that often follow transfusions. "After you control for sickness and all sorts of things, patients who receive transfusions still have more heart attacks. It makes no sense," says Dr. Jonathan Stamler, a professor of medicine at Duke University Medical Center.

Logically, and medically, patients who need transfusions — those with low blood counts — should benefit immediately from a transfusion of new oxygen-laden red blood cells. Yet many get sicker. Puzzled by the paradox, Stamler and his colleagues decided to look more closely at banked blood — to figure out whether it underwent certain changes that turned it from life-saving in the donor to potentially deadly in the bag.

Their finding, reported this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences: nitric oxide (NO). A workhorse of the blood, the gas helps red blood cells ferry oxygen to tissues and props open tiny vessels to allow freer blood flow. It turns out that within hours of leaving the body, levels of nitric oxide in the blood begin to drop, until, by the time donated blood expires after 42 days, the gas is almost nonexistent. "The reality is that we are giving blood that cannot deliver oxygen properly," says Stamler, lead author of the study. "Many patients who are getting blood are being put at increased risk."

Previous trials have shown that heart disease patients, for example, who receive a blood transfusion to help restore oxygen to deprived tissues, have a 25% chance of having a heart attack and an 8% chance of dying within 30 days; similar patients who do not get transfused have an 8% chance of a cardiac event and a 3% chance of death. Stamler hypothesizes that without NO, red blood cells cannot drill their way into tiny blood vessels; rather, they pile up in narrow passageways, blocking blood flow instead of increasing it and hampering the heart.

Blood transfusions alone may not be directly responsible for these health hazards, but data from other recent studies have been enough to convince physicians to change their so-called transfusion trigger. Doctors have traditionally waited until the patient's hematocrit — the proportion of the blood made up of red blood cells — drops below the normal range of 45% to 55% before transfusing. Now, doctors prefer to wait longer, until it falls below 30%. "There is still a lot of controversy about the trigger," says Dr. Lynne Uhl, a transfusion specialist at Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital, "but the growing data has reinforced the practice that it's okay to let the patient's hematocrit drop lower before transfusing."

Wouldn't it be more effective if banked blood could simply be improved? Stamler's study suggests it can: by replacing nitric oxide in stored blood, Stamler showed that the risk of heart attack and death from transfusion dropped dramatically, at least in mice. And there's reason to believe such replenishment could work in human patients as well; already, premature babies born with lung and respiratory problems are placed in NO-rich environments to ensure that their still developing tissues get the oxygen they need to grow properly. For now, the American Red Cross, which oversees 14 million units of banked blood, is waiting for additional study results before changing any of its processing and storage practices.

But why stop there? Stamler argues that it might be possible to supercharge the NO content in blood and use it as a treatment for everything from heart disease to angina to diabetes. "We all want to open up blood vessels, and blood knows how to do that," he says. "The opportunities to manipulate the system to do even better are now available." And that would truly make giving blood the gift of life.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Grape Consumption Improves Antioxidant Capacity in Humans

Grape Consumption Improves Antioxidant Capacity in Humans

FRESNO, Calif., Oct. 12 A side of grapes with that burger? It is probably a good idea based on health research findings presented at the Second International Symposium on Human Health Effects of Fruits and Vegetables in Houston, Texas this week.

The symposium presented evidence that high antioxidant foods should be consumed with each meal to prevent periods of post-meal oxidative stress. Oxidative stress is linked to aging and the onset of chronic diseases. Antioxidants are known for their ability to neutralize free radicals that are generated by an array of environmental stresses on the body -- from natural processes to external assaults such as smoking and pollution.

Among the fruits specifically highlighted as beneficial were grapes, which, after consumption resulted in almost double the amount of recommended total antioxidant capacity needed to counteract the deficit associated with consuming 1000 calories of food.

Dr. Ronald L. Prior of the USDA's Arkansas Children's Nutrition Center, widely recognized as a pioneer of the ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) technique for measuring antioxidant capacity in foods, shared his findings regarding the natural state of oxidative stress in the body that results from eating a meal and the ability to counteract it in humans following consumption of certain fruits.

Prior showed that the metabolic process of digesting a meal with no antioxidants -- just fat, carbohydrate and protein -- causes a decline in antioxidant capacity of the blood which creates a temporary state of oxidative stress. This deficit can be prevented by consuming high antioxidant fruits such as grapes, which in this study provided almost double the amount needed to bring the body back in balance following the meal. His work also showed that some fruits that typically score high in antioxidant content, may not significantly impact oxidative status in the body. The key is "bioavailability," the body's ability to process and use the antioxidants.

"This research reinforced the fact that grapes are a great source of beneficial antioxidants that are bioavailable and able to improve antioxidant status in humans," said Kathleen Nave, president of the California Table Grape Commission. "Based on this research, one easy, proactive step that people can take to help safeguard their health is to eat high antioxidant fruit -- like grapes -- with their meals."

The International Symposium on Human Health Effects of Fruit and Vegetables is a scientific forum in which approximately 300 scientists, nutrition and medical professionals, industry representatives, commodity groups, and legislators from 38 countries gather to exchange information on the latest advances in science relating to the health-maintaining properties of fruits and vegetables. The goal of the conference is to facilitate discussion between the agricultural, nutrition and health sciences, and to advance the science related to foods for health. The conference is hosted by the Vegetable and Fruit Improvement Center of the Texas A&M Agriculture in Houston, Texas.

SOURCE California Table Grape Commission

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Friday, October 12, 2007

'India Ready to Heal the World,' Says Apollo Hospitals Chief


'India Ready to Heal the World,' Says Apollo Hospitals Chief

Addressing a Confederation of Indian Industry (CII)-sponsored conclave on healthcare services here today, Dr. Pratap C Reddy, Chairman, CII National Committee of Healthcare and Chairman, Apollo Hospitals Group, said that India is ready to heal the world.

Reiterating the fact that the world has recognized the healthcare potential of India, Dr. Reddy said that the biggest challenge for India is to make healthcare available to a billion people.

He stated that the Indian healthcare sector has matured to international standards and continuous innovation in new methodology has brought in professionalism in this sector.

He spoke of the need for increasing nursing capabilities before a crisis emerges in terms of shortage.

He urged the government to drive the numbers up from the existing figure of four million nurses to 30 million.

He also stressed on the need for promoting basic research in India and the necessity for the integration of Alternative Healthcare systems with that of current medical care for achieving good health for all.

He concluded by saying that there is a need for a vision and target and to see India as a happy and healthy country.

Vishal Bali, CEO, Wockhardt Hospitals Group, mentioned that it is very important for India that its wellness index grows proportionately to its economic index. He said that healthcare sector is in a transition and that it has immense opportunities and challenges.

He stated that Hyderabad has become a significant provider of healthcare services in India with a large capacity of beds having been created in this region. Quality focus is a very important area that the healthcare sector demands at this juncture, he added.

P K Agarwal, Principal Secretary(Health), Andhra Pradesh, emphasized that the aim of the government is to provide accessible, affordable, accountable, equitable, effective and reliable healthcare, especially to the poor and the vulnerable sections of population, mainly focusing on the rural areas.

He stated that to bring in the desired changes for a healthy growth of healthcare sector, a well-defined partnership between the government and the private sector is essential. PPP would help in improving access and reducing costs of individual treatment for chronic illnesses. He highlighted some of the schemes of the Government of Andhra Pradesh and also expressed the commitment of the government towards the development of healthcare sector.

S K Kakkar, Head, CII Institute of Quality, in his concluding remarks highlighted the strategic importance of quality in any sector. He traced the journey of quality from shop floor to the board room. He also stressed on the need for Public Private Partnership to achieve excellence.


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"Importance of having Breakfast"

Breakfast can help prevent strokes, heart attack and sudden death.

Advice on not to skip breakfast!

Healthy living
For those who always skip breakfast, you should stop that habit now!You've heard many times that "Breakfast is the most important meal of the day." Now, recent research confirms that one of the worst practices you can develop

may be avoiding breakfast. Why?

Because the frequency of heart attack, sudden death, and stroke peaks between 6: 00a.m. and noon,with the highest incidence being between 8: 00a.m. and 10:00a.m.What mechanism within the body could account for this significant jump in sudden death in the early morning hours?

We may have an Answer.

Platelet, tiny elements in the blood that keep us from bleeding to Death if we get a cut, can
clump together inside our arteries due to Cholesterol or laque buildup in the artery lining.
It is in the morning hours that platelets become the most activated and tend to form these
internal blood clots at the greatest frequency.However, eating even a very light breakfast prevents the morning platelet activation that is associated with heart attacks and strokes. Studies performed at Memorial

University in St.Johns, Newfoundland found that eating a light, very low-fat breakfast was critical in modifying the morning platelet activation. Subjects in the study consumed either low-fat or fat-free yogurt, orange juice, fruit, and a source of protein coming from yogurt or fat-free milk. So if you skip breakfast, it's important that you change this

practice immediately in light of this research.

Develop a simple plan to eat cereal, such as oatmeal or Bran Flakes,along with six ounces of grape juice or orange juice, and perhaps a piece of fruit.This simple plan will keep your platelets from sticking together, keep blood clots from forming, and perhaps head off a potential Heart Attack or stroke.

So never ever skip breakfast

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Thursday, October 4, 2007

Article Emporium | Cinnamon: For Spice and Good Health

Article Emporium | Cinnamon: For Spice and Good Health

The aromatic scent of cinnamon is powerful because it makes many people feel warm and fuzzy. The health benefits of cinnamon have taken the backseat in favor of its spice properties. Many health experts claim that a dash of cinnamon can be a way to add flavor to many dishes and at the same time improve one's health in many ways. For centuries, cinnamon has been used for traditional medicine and other therapeutic purposes. Many studies have supported the ancient health claims of this spice. Cinnamon is most known to medical experts because of its ability to fight fungal infections, prevent ulcers, treat tooth decay and gum disease, and alleviate gum disease.

Recent studies show that cinnamon can be used as an alternative medicine for heart health. Before stating the connection between heart health and cinnamon, the causes of heart disease should be tackled. The common causes of heart disease are:

· Tobacco smoke – Cigarette smoking is one of the major risk factor for cardiac death in patients with coronary heart disease. People who smoke cigars or cigarettes have increased risk of acquiring coronary heart ailments.

· High cholesterol levels – As one's cholesterol levels rises, so does the risk of heart disease. Age, sex, and diet are some of the factors that determine one's cholesterol level.

· Lack of physical activity – Physical inactivity is one of the the major factors for developing heart disease. Heart disease is characterized by deposits of fatty substance, cholesterol, and other substances that may block the lining of the arteries that supply blood to the heart.

· Obesity and excess weight – Excess weight increases the work load of the heart and raises the blood pressure and cholesterol level. As this happens, the risk of heart disease heightens.

In addition to this factors, an individual's response to stress can be a contributing factor. Some health specialists have noted the relationship between coronary heart disease and stressful lifestyle. For example, stressed people may start to smoke. Drinking too much alcohol can cause heart failure and eventually lead to stroke. It can contribute to obesity, alcoholism, and accidents.

Cinnamon can be used as an alternative to treat heart disease. This spice supports healthy blood sugar levels and also improve cholesterol levels. Cinnamon can reduce diabetes because an active molecule in cinnamon called proanthricyanidin. This molecule functions by activating insulin receptors within the cell, therefore facilitating the cell to use glucose for energy. Therefore lowering glucose and lipid workers. Cholesterol and diabetes are the common risk factors for heart disease.

In addition, cinnamon has antibacterial-inflammatory attribute that can reduce joint and muscle pain, especially the ones associated with arthritis. Many studies show that diabetics should take daily dose cinnamon may regulate blood sugar levels. Cinnamon can also benefit one's health by improving the body's circulation. It also improves the digestive system and relieve many stomach discomforts. Studies add that a daily dose of cinnamon may relieve pains associated with their menstrual cycle.

While cinnamon can give many health benefits and improve overall well-being. The best options are taking cinnamon supplements or eating half a teaspoon of cinnamon than what individuals normally eat. Lastly, advice of medical specialists should be considered before trying cinnamon supplements and other forms of alternative medicine. Because side effects and interaction with other drugs may take place.

Effects of High Blood Pressure