Tuesday, December 30, 2008

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Monday, November 24, 2008

How to stop cough in 5 minutes!!!

This is a must try....
We have all been kept awake by our own or someone else's cough. Try this and pass it on. The tip and not the cough. ANYTHING is better than antibiotics. Even babies could benefit from this and the parents wouldn't worry about the safety of their child. And of course, it is harmless and free from any type of side-effects.

WOW! I was raised, and raised my kids with Vicks. How come I never knew this? I can't wait for my next cough. Amazing!
READ IT ALL. It works 100 percent of the time, although the scientists at the Canada Research council (who discovered it) aren't sure why.




To stop night time coughing in a child (or an adult, as we found out personally), put Vicks Vapor Rub generously on the bottom of the feet at bedtime and then cover with socks.

Even persistent, heavy, deep coughing will stop in about five minutes and stay stopped for many, many hours of relief. This works 100 percent of the time, and is more effective in children than even very strong prescription cough medicines. In addition it is extremely soothing and comforting and they will sleep soundly. I heard the head of the Canada Research Council describe these findings on the part of their scientists when they were investigating the effectiveness and usage of prescription cough medicines in children, as compared to alternative therapies like acupressure. I just happened to tune in to a.m. Radio and picked up this guy talking about why cough medicines in kids often do more harm than good due to the chemical makeup of these strong drugs, so I listened. It was a surprising finding and found to be more effective than prescribed medicines for children at bedtime, and in addition to have a soothing and calming effect on sick children who then went on to sleep soundly.

My friend tried it on herself when she had a very deep constant and persistent cough a few weeks ago, and it worked 100 percent! She said it felt like a warm blanket had enveloped her. The coughing stopped in a few minutes, and believe me this was a deep (incredibly annoying!) every few seconds, uncontrollable cough and she slept cough-free for hours every night she used it.

If you have children or grandchildren, pass it on. If you end up sick, try it yourself and you will be absolutely amazed.

How to stop cough in 5 minutes!!! This is a must try...

Don't waste time regretting or expecting too much in your life. Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. But Today is a gift - and that is why it is called the PRESENT.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Health - Important Tips

Answer the phone by LEFT ear.
Do not drink coffee TWICE a day.
Do not take pills with
COOL water.
Do not have HUGE meals after 5pm.
Reduce the amount of
OILY food you consume.
Drink more
WATER in the morning, less at night.
Keep your distance from hand phone
Do not use headphones/earphone for LONG period of time.
Best sleeping time is from
10pm at night to 6am in the morning.
Do not lie down immediately after taking
medicine before sleeping.
When battery is down to the
LAST grid/bar, do not answer the phone as the radiation is 1000 times.

Forward this to those whom you CARE about

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Two CocoaVia dark chocolate bars a day can help cut cholesterol levels


Tuesday,22.04.2008 (GMT)

Washington, Here's one way you can cut down on your cholesterol levels – eat chocolate bars.


The news comes from researchers at the University of Illinois who found that eating two CocoaVia dark chocolate bars a day also had the added good effect of lowering systolic blood pressure.


Lead researcher John Erdman, a U. of I. professor of food science and human nutrition, and colleagues state the plant sterols and flavanols added to the bars is what helps them in lowering cholesterol and blood pressure respectively.


As a part of the study, researchers recruited 49 people with slightly elevated cholesterol and normal blood pressure.


These people then began the American Heart Association's "Eating Plan for Healthy Americans" two weeks before the study started. After this, the volunteers were divided into two groups.


Both groups were given CocoaVia bars. However, while one group was given bars with plant sterols, the other was not.


The participants ate one CocoaVia formulation twice daily for four weeks, then switched to the other bar for an additional four weeks.


Blood cholesterol levels, blood pressure, body weight, and other cardiovascular measures were tracked throughout the eight-week study.


Co-author of the study Ellen Evans revealed that a marked difference was seen in the participants who ate the bars with plant sterols.


"After starting the CocoaVia bars, we saw a marked differential effect on blood cholesterol, with the sterol-containing products doing better than those without sterols," she said.


Erdman insisted that there was no interference by Mars Inc., the company that not only manufactures the chocolate bars, but which also funded part of the study

Friday, April 25, 2008

Household THERAPY

Toothpaste on pimples, beer for hair! Cues to better health might just be at your home

1 TOOTHPASTE THE FIX: Dries out spots
HOW IT WORKS: Models have known for years that if a nasty, red pimple appears on their face the day before a shoot, the best cure is to zap it with a blob of toothpaste.
    Toothpaste contains an antibacterial agent to kill plaque, so the theory is it may kill the bacteria responsible for spots. But be
careful if you have sensitive skin. It can cause irritation. 2 SODA BI-CARB THE FIX: Whitens teeth
HOW IT WORKS: Baking soda is sodium bicarbonate, a naturally occurring mineral that is a great cleaner.
    Simply sprinkle a teaspoon on your toothbrush and clean teeth as usual. The gentle abrasive action will polish your teeth, removing dirt and stains, and giving you fresh breath, too.


BEER THE FIX: Hair shiner and

HOW IT WORKS: The malt and hops in beer are packed with protein, which coats the hair, adds volume and smoothes damaged cuticles.
    Beer also contains vitamin B,
which helps condition hair, while the natural sugars create shine. Shampoo and rinse hair as usual, then pour a bottle over it. Work through and rinse with lukewarm water.

MAYONNAISE THE FIX: Emergency skin

HOW IT WORKS: Fans apply a layer as you would a normal cleanser, massage it in and then rinse thoroughly.
The vegetable oils and egg yolk are supposed to soften skin, while the lemon juice has astringent properties to clean and tighten pores.


from blonde dyed hair

HOW IT WORKS: It corrects highlights gone green from swimming pools.
    Apparently, hair turns green due to oxidation chemicals in the pool and the tomato sauce acts as an antioxidant restoring
    normal hair colour.
Advocates apply ketchup all over the hair and massage it in, leave it for 20 minutes and then wash it out thoroughly.
—Daily Mirror



Trampoline rebounding is a great way to lose weight, gain cardiovascular benefits and have fun working out — all at the same time, says Namita Jain

Gymnasts and acrobats often use an elevated elastic canvas or a net bed as a performing surface. The trampoline is a little more than just that. A spring or a rubber suspension anchors the elastic canvas bed to a metal frame of table height. The sides are padded and the springs beneath cause the performer to bounce upward.

While using the trampoline, don't concentrate on jumping up. Instead, try to push downwards using your heels. Contract the abdominals and maintain correct body alignment and posture during the workout.
Utilising the laws of physics, rebounding is unique since it uses the natural laws of gravity to stimulate every cell of the body. We are all subject to gravity, but on the trampoline every cell in the body is opposing gravity.
    Rebounding exercises can be compared to the action of a vacuum cleaner. They help boost the immune system by eliminating toxins from and around the cellular tissue spaces, making it possible for the lymphatic system (the body's drainage system) to cleanse the body. When the lymphatics function properly, we are in good health. Similarly, when it doesn't function properly, we are prone to illness.
How safe is rebounding?
Rebounding on the trampoline is safe and non-jarring on the joints. For example when you run or exercise on a solid surface, a certain amount of force from the impact of the foot striking the ground is sent through the body. On the trampoline, the mat absorbs the impact force over a longer period, reducing the element of stress on the joints.
I workout in a gym. Is trampoline a good addition to my workout routine?

Rebounding is the perfect complementary exercise any workout routine. It is efficient and gives results.
Do rebounding exercises help relieve stress?
The endorphins (body's natural mood elevators) released during exercise will improve your state of mind and help you destress.
Do you notice that when children jump, their spirits are high?
This is because bouncing to them is a natural expression, which elevates their mood.
How high does the ceiling height need to be when i jump?
An eight-foot height is sufficient for most people unless you are over six feet tall. In that case you will require a location with a higher ceiling height.
My balance is not very good. Can I fall off a rebounder?
Exercising on a rebounder trains your sense of balance and helps establish better co-ordination and kinesthetic awareness. Start with a gentle bounce, mov
ing on to higher jumps.
Will I lose weight?
Trampoline exercises are aerobic in nature. So you will burn calories when you exercise.
When is the best time to rebound?
Anytime that is convenient to you is good. If you exercise after a meal, make sure there is a gap of two to three hours before you workout.

• During your scheduled workout time.

• As soon as you get out of bed in the morning

• Before a meal to help curb your appetite

• When you are
stressed or tense

• While you are listening to music or chatting on the phone.

• Burns calories

• Helps de-stress

• Boosts the lymphatic and immune system

• Increases energy and vitality

• Improves balance and co-ordination.
Place your trampoline where it is visible and easily accessible so that you are reminded to use it regularly.

• Start with a gentle bounce.

• Add new moves your routine: be creative and have fun.
Basic bounce/ March
March or lightly bounce on the trampoline to warm-up the muscles.
Jog in place. Vary the speed, jog fast and then slow.
Keep the legs together and twist the body to the right and then to the left side.
Vertical jump
Spring up with both feet together, knees bent and hands lifted to the sides for balance.
Lift your knees up alternately
    up to a 90-degree angle.
Cool down
March on the trampoline for a few minutes to bring down your heart rate.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Back Pain: What Works

Simple treatments may help as much as high-tech gadgets or surgery.

James Weinstein, an expert in back pain at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, was bending down two years ago when his back went out. The pain was so bad he could hardly breathe. For ten minutes "my hands were on my knees and I couldn't stand," the renowned orthopedic surgeon says. He hoped none of his patients would happen by and see him. It took him ten minutes to struggle out to his car.

As he lay on his back at home, his wife politely reminded him of the advice he gives his patients: Take some aspirin, get out of bed and get back to a normal routine as soon as it's tolerable. The next day he forced himself to take a jog. The first steps were excruciating, but by the end he felt a little better. He recovered a week later.

Back pain hits tens of millions of Americans every year. The cost of treating it was $86 billion in 2005, up 65% (in real terms) from 1997, a recent University of Washington study estimated. Where did the money go? Brand-name narcotics and all sorts of new gadgets. But the same study found that patients aren't feeling any better than they did a decade ago. "A lot of the things we are doing aren't offering much benefit," says Richard Deyo, of Oregon Health & Science University, one of the study's coauthors. The good news is that according to recent studies, several low-tech approaches do appear to help. Here are some pointers:

Time is on your side

Most acute back pain episodes resolve on their own. A 1995 study of 1,633 North Carolina residents who had reported back pain to their practitioners found that they recovered full functioning in 16 days, on average; only 31% had any residual pain six months later. "The natural history is very favorable. Time is on your side," Deyo says. Even if you have chronic symptoms, odds are they won't lead to serious medical consequences; 85% of back pain cannot be linked to any specific anatomical problem. Chronic pain may be caused partly by sensitized nerves that keep firing well after the original source of the pain is gone, researchers believe. "Hurt doesn't mean harm," says Weinstein. "Most people don't know this and get scared." Exceptions include if you have alarming symptoms such as progressively worsening pain; pain that wakes you up; or pain accompanied by fever, unexplained weight loss or bowel or bladder problems.

Stay active

For decades doctors used to prescribe bed rest for back pain. Now they realize this is exactly the wrong advice. For acute back episodes, the key is to return to normal activity as soon as you can. A 1995 Finnish study compared back patients who were prescribed two days of bed rest with those who were advised to resume normal activities when they could. The patients assigned bed rest recovered more slowly and took more sick days. One reason may be that the spinal disks between the vertebrae don't have their own blood supply; they need motion to move nutrients in and waste out, Weinstein says.

For those with chronic back pain, a formal exercise program can help, according to a 2005 Annals of Internal Medicine analysis of 43 previous studies. The exercise can help strengthen muscles, improve general conditioning and have a positive psychological impact, as the sufferer realizes the pain isn't as limiting as it seemed. It may also raise endorphin levels. Go to index.htm.

Low-tech remedies work

As director of clinical guidelines for the American Pain Society, Roger Chou, an internist and colleague of Deyo's at the Oregon school, recently spent three years reviewing the scientific literature to see what works best for back pain. His conclusion: Stick with a low-tech, noninvasive treatment unless you have a good reason to do otherwise. Besides exercise, he found three low-tech regimens with strong statistical evidence for their use: spinal manipulation from a chiropractor or osteopath (why this works isn't clear); interdisciplinary rehabilitation programs that combine supervised exercise and counseling; and cognitive-behavioral therapy, which helps you develop coping skills and prevents panic about the pain. In patient trials all these approaches reduced back pain by moderate amounts, Chou says. The drugs with the best data behind them for back pain include anti-inflammatories like ibuprofen and naproxen and muscle relaxants like Flexeril to treat acute pain. For more detail, see the Oct. 2, 2007 Annals of Internal Medicine. Go to

Chou has also reviewed the evidence for numerous high-tech procedures, including everything from spinal injections to needles that burn spinal disks. Few have convincing studies behind them, he says: "It is really kind of shocking." An exception is surgery for specific problems such as a herniated disk pressing on a nerve (see box).

An MRI may not help

Up to 90% of people get worn-down spinal disks and other spine imperfections as they age that can be spotted with magnetic resonance imaging. But doctors often can't determine whether those problems are the cause of back pain. In one Journal of the American Medical Association study, back patients who got MRIs didn't have any less pain a year later, but they were more likely to have had surgery. "Most imaging tests don't give us useful information, and may lead to unnecessary operations," says Chou. An MRI makes best sense for those considering surgery or if serious conditions like cancer or neurological problems are suspected.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

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Thursday, April 10, 2008

Blood donors 'healthier'

Donating blood may affect mechanisms in the body such as blood production and iron storage. Photo / Greg Bowker

Donating blood may affect mechanisms in the body such as blood production and iron storage. Photo / Greg Bowker

Frequent blood donation is not harmful to your health, a new study confirms.

"Blood donation may actually be good for you," said Dr Gustaf Edgren of the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, the study's lead author.

People who donate blood show lower cancer and mortality rates than their non-donating peers, Dr Edgren and his colleagues note in their report, published in the Journal of the National Cancer Association, but the fact that blood donors tend to be healthier overall could mask any ill effects of frequent donation.

There are also several mechanisms by which frequent blood donation could theoretically affect health, Dr Edgren noted.

For one, drawing blood causes the body to ramp up production of blood cells in the bone marrow. This accelerated cell division, or "mitotic stress," could increase the likelihood of malignancy in blood-forming tissues.

On the positive side, excess iron stores have been tied to heart disease and certain types of cancer, so people who have their blood drawn regularly may be depleting these stores and thus improving their health.

To better understand how repeated blood donations affect health, Dr Edgren and his team looked at data from Swedish and Danish blood banks and transfusion clinics containing records of individuals who donated blood at least once between 1968 and 2002, a total of 1,110,212 people.

The investigators found no relationship between how frequently a person gave blood and their risk of cancer. However, among male donors, the risk of liver, lung, colon, stomach and throat cancer declined as the frequency of donations increased, which suggests that iron depletion may reduce cancer risk.

The researchers also found an increased risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma among frequent plasma donors, but this was only seen among people who donated plasma before 1986. This finding "must be interpreted cautiously", Edgren and colleagues write.

Even a small excess risk of cancer associated with blood donation would be "a very serious matter", Dr Edgren noted, because so many people donate blood.

However, he added, "we've more or less made very clear that there is no excess risk of cancer associated with frequent blood donation".

Friday, March 28, 2008

Brain has sixth sense for calories

NEW YORK: The brain has a way of sensing calories in food, independent of the taste mechanism, according to a new study.

The discovery that the brain's reward system is switched on by this "sixth sense" machinery could have implications for understanding the causes of obesity.

For example, the findings suggest why high-fructose corn syrup, widely used as a sweetener in foods, might contribute to obesity.

Findings of the study have been published in the latest issue of the journal Neuron.

Ivan de Araujo and his research colleagues genetically altered mice to make them "sweet-blind", or lacking a key component of taste receptor cells that enabled them to detect the sweet taste.

The researchers next performed behavioural tests in which they compared normal and sweet-blind mice in their preference for sugar solutions and those containing the non-caloric sweetener sucralose.

In those tests, the sweet-blind mice showed a preference for calorie containing sugar water that did not depend on their ability to taste, but on the calorie content.

In analysing the brains of the sweet-blind mice, researchers showed that the animals' reward circuitry was switched on by caloric intake, independent of the animals' ability to taste.

Those analyses showed that levels of the brain chemical dopamine, known to be central to activating the reward circuitry, increased with caloric intake.

Also, electrophysiological studies showed that neurons in the food-reward region, called the nucleus accumbens, were activated by caloric intake, independent of taste.

ICICI Lombard to tie up with UnitedHealth Group

Indian insurer's policyholders traveling to US will have access to US-based healthcare firm's programmes and services
Through this initiative, ICICI Lombard's 1.6 million policyholders traveling to the US, who are covered by the insurer's Overseas Travel Insurance or Student Overseas Medical Insurance, will have access to the US-based healthcare firm's programmes and services.
Sudhir Menon, head, travel insurance, ICICI Lombard, said, "This partnership is an innovative benefit for Indians, who are increasingly traveling abroad for both occupational and educational purposes."
"We look forward to leveraging the assets of UnitedHealth Group to deliver the best in service and resources to our customers throughout their travels to the United States," he said.
UnitedHealth International CEO Ori Karev said, "Our new partnership with ICICI Lombard is an important step in making access to cross-border health care more seamless for consumers, a model we are exploring in multiple markets."
ICICI Lombard is a 74:26 joint venture between ICICI Bank Ltd, India's second largest bank with $79 billion in assets, and Fairfax Financial Holdings Ltd, a Canada-based financial services provider.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Helpful Tips on Eye Care

With so many of us spending lots of time in front of the computer every day it comes to no surprise that research is showing a rise in visual problems. What can one do? First, it's important to find out how you can protect your eyes through eye health exams and by making a few minor changes in your computer viewing habits. 
Here are some helpful Eye Care Tips - 
Positioning is everything
Correct positioning of your computer, keyboard and typing copy is essential. Your screen should be positioned about an arm's length from your eyes and 20 degrees below eye level. Consider foot and wrist rests for added comfort.
Lighting can make all the difference
Room lighting should be diffuse, not direct, to reduce glare and reflections from your screen. Look into an internal or external glare screen and be sure to set your colour, contrast and brightness levels to suit you.

A little extra help for your glasses
Anti-reflective coatings on the lenses of your glasses can be applied by your optometrist to reduce discomfort and to ease reduced vision from bright and/or flickering light sources such as VDTs and fluorescent lights. And don't forget, your doctor of optometry can talk to you about eyeglasses designed specifically for people who use computers a lot.
Take time out, our 20-20-20 rule
Step I :-
After every 20 minutes of looking into the computer screen, turn your
head and try to look at any object placed at least 20 feet away. This
changes the focal length of your eyes, a must-do for the tired eyes.

Step II :-
Try and blink your eyes for 20 times in succession, to moisten them.

Step III :-
Time permitting of course, one should walk 20 paces after every 20 minutes
of sitting in one particular posture. Helps blood circulation for the entire body.

It's all in the blinking
Did you know that on average we blink 12 times per minute? But wait, did you know that when we're on the computer we only blink 5 times per minute? That can add up to dry eyes. Relieve the discomfort by using artificial tear drops or gels and remember to blink!

Sit straight at your workstation and rub your palms against each other till you feel them warm. The warmth of your palms helps soothe and relax tired eyes. Then, lightly cup your eyes with your palms and relax for 60 seconds. Count the seconds in your mind. Repeat this exercise two to three times whenever your eyes feel tired, or as often as you want. While palming, you can either rest your elbows on your desk or keep away from the desk and cup your eyes. Both ways are fine.

Splash water on your face

During breaks, splash water on your face while closing your eyes. This has an overall relaxing effect and helps you feel refreshed.

Use tea bags

Keep two used tea bags in the refrigerator before you leave for work. Once you are home, place the tea bags on your eyes for a few minutes as you relax. This not only soothes tired eyes, but also reduces puffiness.
Eat healthy

Incorporate Vitamins A, C, and E on a daily basis; eat citrus fruits, green leafy veggies, tomatoes, spinach, poultry and dairy products. Pack a box of chopped carrots, cucumber and fresh fruits and munch in-between meals at the office.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Headache? Could be brain attack

BANGALORE: Are you suffering from a persistent headache, sudden onset of weakness on one side of the body, loss of sensation or imbalance while walking? Don't wish these symptoms away. It could be a 'brain attack'.

While the term 'brain attack' is new, the condition is not. 'Brain attack', popularly known as 'stroke', is the third leading cause of death in the developed world. While two in every 1,000 persons are prone to brain attack, India witnesses two million new cases every year.

To draw attention to stroke and its catastrophic nature, neurologists are now trying to popularize the term 'brain attack' as it underlines the urgency with which the situation has to be addressed. While both heart attack and brain attack have equally devastating effects, heart attack is easily and widely understood as 'dangerous'. This is not the case with brain attack, rued doctors.

Dr N K Venkataramana, neurosurgeon and vice-chairman of BGS Global Hospitals, said: "In brain attack, the blockage of blood flow or bleeding into the brain depletes glucose and oxygen in the brain, resulting in irreversible damage. It causes paralysis, loss of speech and even death."

Awareness extends to access to emergency care, say hospitals, which are now working towards reducing the risk of mis-diagnosis and neglect. "Creating stand-alone stroke clinics helps. The first three-hour period after a brain attack is considered a 'golden hour'. Proper diagnosis followed by immediate medical attention can reverse a brain attack. To differentiate stroke symptoms from others, we need to educate the community and train physicians."

Strokes manifest themselves in two complex forms. 'Ischemic', where blood flow to a part of the brain is blocked due to a blood clot and accounts for almost 80% of all strokes, and 'haemorrhagic' where blood leaks out of the blood vessels of the brain following rupture. A CT scan would show these up. "Treatment involves administering clot-dissolving drugs to bring about a dramatic improvement in paralysis. To prevent recurrence, we give drugs which prevent clots and advise control of other risk factors," explained the doctor.

Another option is surgery. "A clot in the carotid artery is removed by endarterectomy to improve blood flow. Swelling in the brain is treated by removing a flap of the overlying skull bone. This provides extra space for the swollen brain and is life-saving."


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Saturday, March 15, 2008

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Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Love you with both my kidneys

Love you with both my kidneys

By Dr. Aley. H. Bilgrami

Kidneys are like our parents. Although we have two of them, we cannot afford to take either one of them for granted.

Are your kidneys okay? This is a question we seldom ask ourselves but one that is being asked every year, on World Kidney Day, as one out of ten adults suffer some form of kidney damage.

The purpose of world kidney day is to raise awareness about the importance of our kidneys, an amazing organ that plays a crucial role in keeping us alive and well; and also to tell the world that kidney disease is common but can be treated if diagnosed on time.

There are two types of kidney disease, acute and chronic. Acute diseases appear suddenly but are generally short lived and reversible if treated promptly. Chronic diseases appear gradually, last longer, and can only be partially reversed or stabilized. Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is silent and may go unnoticed for a long time as it takes a while for symptoms to appear.

As we all know, this bean shaped organ performs some very essential functions: the elimination of waste products, control of blood pressure, maintaining the level of certain salts present in the bloodstream within a within safe range in and the secretion of different chemicals (hormones).

We make an assessment of kidney functions by measuring the blood level of certain substances normally eliminated by kidneys. Commonly measured substances are urea and creatinine. If the reading is within the normal range, the kidneys are working properly; high levels mean decreased kidney functions. We can also detect kidney malfunction through a simple urine analysis which includes physical, chemical and microscopic examination by a simple lab test

• Sample of blood – creatinine measurement

• Sample of urine – to detect protein (albumin)

• Ultrasound of kidneys

Chronic kidney disease can lead to kidney failure, requiring dialysis or kidney transplant; it also increases the risk of heart disease and premature death.

A few common causes which can damage our kidneys are:

• Congenital kidney disease

• Diabetes mellitus

• High blood pressure

• Infections

• Kidney stones

Diabetes and high blood pressure

Diabetes (along with other diseases like high blood pressure) is one of the common but treatable causes of end stage kidney disease. Diabetes is the leading cause of kidney failure in the industrialised world and most developing countries, including Pakistan and more than 33% of patients on dialysis are diabetics. Currently there are 150 million diabetics in the world; this will go up to 333 million by the year 2025.

Initially there are no symptoms however kidney involvement can be detected early by checking urine for the presence of proteins. Initially protein in urine is in very small quantity and is called microalbuminuria (MAU); this can be checked by a special test. The presence of MAU is an early indicator of kidney disease and allows measures to be taken early to slow or even prevent progression of kidney involvement. It is recommended that maturity onset diabetics (Type II, non insulin dependant) are screened for MAU at the time of diagnosis of diabetes and, from then onwards, on a yearly basis. Juvenile diabetics (Type I, insulin dependant) should be screened for MAU starting five years after their diagnosis.

Kidney stones

While the Stone Age is long past, we still live in a stone belt. The estimated prevalence of stone disease in Pakistan is 8-10%. It is more common in males but affects people of all ages - from three months to 70 years – especially the poor and the malnourished people of rural areas.

While there are many ways of treating kidney stones, one can take a few simple measures to avoid them altogether. Drink plenty of water - at least ten glasses a day under normal conditions; more in hot weather and after exercise as well as in the night.

Our diet should include lemon juice, orange juice and a lot of calcium; milk protects against endemic stones in children and it should be a part of daily diet. Keeping salt intake to minimum and avoiding constipation are also helpful measures against infection and stones.

Kidney stones are of different and rare compositions, and, as such, require different preventive measures. Cystine stones can be dealt with by drinking four litres of fluid per day; prevention of uric acid stones however, requires avoiding red and organ meat. A low purine diet is also advised which restricts consumption of alcoholic beverages, fish, fried beans, soya beans, mushrooms, spinach etc. A high oxalate diet (black tea, chocolate, coca, spinach, coffee) should be avoided as well. High doses of vitamin C and D and vitamin B6 and vitamin E are beneficial for managing excessive oxalate in urine.

Kidney infections in children

The most common, kidney-related problem among the paediatric population is the urinary tract infection, especially in infants, as it can be very non-specific. A high index of suspicion should be emphasized for both parents and physicians. All diagnosed cases should be treated aggressively and investigated for etiology thoroughly.

Among a few causes are:

• Congenital abnormality in urinary tract

• Bladder dysfunction

• Uncircumcised males less than 3 months of age

• Non breast-fed infants

• Exposure to broad spectrum antibiotics

• Constipation

Kidneys are like our parents. Although we have two of them, we cannot afford to take either one of them for granted. Both of them must function well, if we want to live a long, healthy life. Love your kidneys as you love your parents.


Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Home Remedy for Boils

Eat fresh fruit and raw or lightly steamed vegetables.
Drink fresh juice and 1-2 litres of mineral water daily.
Nourish your immune system with extra antioxidant vitamins.
Vitamin C and Zinc found in citrus fruits, berries, chicken, shellfish, seeds and wholegrains also helps.
Fresh garlic in your diet will have an invaluable anti-bacterial effect.
Drink fresh lemon juice in hot water with 1tsp of honey each morning.

Having a breakfast of white bread may make a person susceptible to diseases

White bread breakfast unhealthy?
Having a breakfast of white bread may make a person susceptible to diseases

Astudy from the University of Sydney in Australia suggests that having a breakfast of white bread and sugar-rich cereals may make a person susceptible to diabetes, heart disease, and even cancer.
University s c i e n t i s t s evaluated 37 diet studies that involved nearly two million people across the world, and analysed the effect of eating foods with high glycemic index (GI), a measure of how different foods affect blood glucose levels.
Their study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, suggested that a high GI diet increased the risk of type 2 diabetes and heart disease.
The researchers also said that a high GI diet also seemed to be linked to gall stones and some types of cancer.
“The key message from this study is that the GI of your diet is a powerful predictor of disease risk,” the lead author Alan Barclay said.
He said that the impact of high GI foods on the likelihood of having diabetes was “not surp r i s i n g ” because such
foods inflate blood glucose and insulin levels.
“You may literally ‘wear out’ your pancreas over time and eventually it may lead to type 2 diabetes in older age,”Barclay said.
The researcher said what was more surprising was the finding that such diets have a “strong relationship” with cancer.

HEALTHY FOOD: Your diet is a powerful predictor of disease risk

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Bollywood's going the Y-way

Yoga, India’s most famous export to the US and Europe, finds starry followers. BT delves deeper into the issue


According to a survey done recently by a sporting goods manufacturers association, an estimated 9.7 million Americans practice yoga, up from 5.7 million in 1998. In Manhattan, yoga studios are a dime a dozen. And predictably, since it is fashionable to do power yoga in the US, India’s most famous export to Hollywood has also found celeb followers in tinseltown’s haute and happening stars — Aishwarya Rai to Kareena Kapoor to Shilpa Shetty, Sameera Reddy, Katrina Kaif, Esha Deol… the list grows everyday.
    So what makes Mumbai filmdom’s reigning divas switch over to yoga in this age of treadmills and sweaty workout regimes? Most new age fitness gurus and yoga teachers, who train Bollywood beauties to get in perfect shape, feel that besides quick results, doing yoga also heals persistent health problems and without side effects.
    So when Kareena Kapoor was asked to lose seven kilos for a new Yash Chopra film, she did it with the help of power yoga and artistic yoga guru Bharat Thakur. When Shilpa Shetty wanted to promote herself as a fitness diva after her reality show win, she cut an entire yoga video for the US/UK market. Mallika Sherawat openly endorses it. Esha Deol admits that her perfect washboard flat tummy and fab abs owe a lot to yoga, while her mom has been one of yoga’s staunchest endorsers in the film industry, alongwith with superstar Rekha who’d also cut a similar yoga video in the 80s.When Bachchan bahu Aishwarya isn’t doing her workouts, she manages to do yoga. Says Thakur, “As one ages, one can’t regularly attend gyms. So you continue to eat the same food but the workload decreases.
Yoga can be practiced at any time in life.”
    to research,
    Asia will be the next growth area for yoga. Doctors and yogis will come closer to each other. Yoga will be hot on social networking sites, as globally the yoga industry is pegged at $18 billion. When glam babe Shilpa Shetty shot to fame, she turned to Ashtanga Yoga to control spondylysis. Says Thakur, “Yoga concentrates on the body’s endocrinal glands and increases the level of happy hormones in the body. Celebs are in the business of looking good, and yoga helps reduce their stress level.”
    Power yoga and fitness consultant Leena Mogre feels, “The Ashtanga style of practice helps to remain fit.” Mogre, who has trained Katrina Kaif and Sameera Reddy, has introduced dynamic styles of suryanamaskars, tabletops and hip hinge positions, which bring body in alignment. What all yoga gurus agree on, is one can individualise one’s yoga routine, something that actor Sameera Reddy swears by. “I learnt power yoga in New York two years ago. With gymming, your body becomes muscular so power yoga keeps the body supple and helps in losing weight,” says Sameera.
    With celebs showing the
    way, it is a matter of time
    before health-conscious
    Indians embrace the
    healing power of
    yoga in a big




CELEBS SHOW THE WAY: (From top) Mallika Sherawat, Shilpa Shetty, Priyanka Kothari and (right) Sameera Reddy





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Thursday, February 28, 2008

Heart risk link to eye condition


AMD is the leading cause of sight loss in the UK

Age-related macular degeneration, a common cause of blindness, has been linked to an increased risk of heart attack and stroke.

Researchers found the risk of dying from the cardiovascular conditions was at least doubled in people with AMD.

The study raises the possibility - disputed by UK experts - that drugs for the condition may be to blame.

The University of Sydney research appears in the British Journal of Ophthalmology.


There are two forms - wet and dry - with the dry form being far more common

The wet type is the most aggressive and accounts for around 90% of blindness caused by the condition

More than 20,000 people in the UK are newly-diagnosed with wet AMD each year

AMD affects the centre of the retina (macula) at the back of the eye, which is used for fine central vision tasks, such as reading and driving.

It is most common in the elderly, among whom it is a major cause of untreatable blindness in developed countries. It is estimated to affect 500,000 people in the UK alone.

The Sydney team assessed the general and eye health of over 3,600 people, all aged at least 49 years at the start of the study.

Of these 2,335 people were re-examined five years later, and 1,952 were examined again 10 years later.

Among people under the age of 75 at the start of the study, early AMD was associated with a doubling in the risks of dying from a heart attack or stroke within the next decade.

Those with late stage disease at the start of the study had five times the risk of dying from a heart attack, and 10 times the risk of dying from a stroke.

Possible reasons

The researchers admitted that more work was needed to confirm their work, as the numbers in their study were relatively small.

They said the reason for a link between AMD and cardiovascular disease was unclear.

The likely reason for the link is vascular degeneration

Mr Winfried Amoaku
Royal College of Ophthalmologists

It could simply be that AMD is a sign that the body is ageing, and vulnerable to all sorts of disease.

Alternatively, it may be that AMD and cardiovascular disease are caused by the same problems, such as inflammation, thickening of the arteries or general tissue damage caused by unstable particles called free radicals.

Another possibility is that anti-VEGF drug treatments for AMD may raise the risk of heart attack and stroke.

Anti-VEGF drugs work by inhibiting the growth of new blood vessels.

This is an effective strategy for AMD because the condition is caused by unstable new blood vessels in the eye, which leak fluid and blood under the retina and cause scarring, which in turn leads to irreversible sight loss.

However, there is concern that inhibiting blood vessel growth may have a wider impact on the cardiovascular system.


The researchers said: "Our results suggest that individuals with a high cardiovascular risk profile may potentially need to be monitored closely if receiving anti-VEGF therapy."

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) eased restrictions on NHS use of one of the anti-VEGF drugs, Lucentis last year, following a campaign to make it more widely available to AMD patients.

Mr Winfried Amoaku, of the Royal College of Ophthalmologists, said other research had also suggested a link between AMD and cardiovascular disease.

But he said anti-VEGF drugs approved for UK use had been shown to be safe.

He said: "The likely reason for the link is vascular degeneration. This is a systemic failure that can affect several parts of the body in relatively quick succession."

The RNIB said the study had not established that the drugs raised the risk of cardiovascular disease, and urged patients not to be put off seeking treatment.

Novartis, the makers of Lucentis, said the drug was very effective, and had proved safe in major clinical trials.

Inflammation genes

A second study in the same journal highlights variations in genes that control the production of chemicals involved in inflammation as a possible key to AMD.

A team from the University of Southampton examined variations in genes controlling production and suppression of cytokines - powerful chemicals involved in inflammatory processes in the body.

They compared DNA samples from people with AMD to those who showed no signs of the disease.

One particular gene variant was significantly more common in the people with AMD.



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