5 Common Food Allergens in India

Allergies are very common amongst us. Either we know we are allergic to stuff based on our experience post consumption of these foods or we aren’t. Many people have hiccups on eating spicy stuff like a chilly, while many get a runny nose. There are people who suffer from lactose intolerance and suffer from diarrhea after consuming foods like milk or cheese. But, if you think all these are allergies, then you aren’t completely right. These can be categorized under food intolerance or insensitivity. A food allergy is not the same. It occurs when your body considers harmless food to apparently harm the body. Food allergies could range from creating simple reactions like rashes on skin, or irritation to eyes or breathing problems to turn out to be life threatening if immediate steps are not taken. The best way to keep yourself safe is to be aware of such triggers and avoid them.

5 Common Food Allergens in India

Let’s look through 10 different food allergens and their side effects or reactions they cause. The most common allergens are as follows –

Eggs – The trigger that causes food allergies in eggs is egg protein like conalbumin, ovumucoid and ovalbumin. This allergy is found mostly in children than in adults. Some of the allergens are destroyed when the eggs are cooked but not all. This allergy can also cause anaphylaxis. The allergy can vary from person to person. While some might be allergic to yoke, some to egg white and some to all.

Fish – Fish allergy could be really harmful. It can be life threatening and lead to anaphylaxis. The allergy can show reactions like throat swelling, diarrhea and puking, skin irritations, blood pressure drop and anaphylaxis as well.

Milk – Many children may be allergic to cow’s milk. It can also be passed to the child indirectly through breast feeding. Many children out-grow of the allergy once adults but one fifth of them are said to have it in their adulthood too. The presence of the milk antibodies can be determined with the help of the blood test.

Soyabean – Soy bean is also one of the common allergy to have. The reactions of soya bean allergy includes vomiting, diarrhea, ashes as well as stomach cramps. Sometimes it could also cause swelling of the tongue, lips as well as hand, feet and puffed eyes too. Other reactions include bloating, flatulence. Though, it rarely gets life threatening and cause anaphylaxis.

Shellfish – Shell fish includes aquatic life like shrimp, oyster, crabs, mussels, clams, scallops, to name a few. This allergy can get serious and even vapor of the cooking shell fish can be allergic. The reaction are very much similar to other allergic reactions

As far as allergens go, prevention is always the best idea. So be aware of allergies if you have any and avoid food that can cause allergies primarily. Also, in case you get one for the first time, take immediate action and consult a doctor without wasting much of a time.

 

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E-Cigarettes are Harmful Too

A Harvard study says that the chemicals that are commonly used to in flavoring e cigarettes may damage our lungs in a way that its ability to fight the dust, dirt and other allergens can be put to risk, thereby increasing risk of diseases like asthma.

The researchers found that two chemicals namely diacetyl and 2, 3 – pentanedione are responsible for the impairment as they affect the functioning of antennae like proturberances. These proturberances are present on 50-75 percent of the cells lining the human airways and are very important contributors in keep the human airway free from dust dirt and mucus thus allowing people to breathe easily without irritation.

e-cigatettes

Cilia is the first line of defense in lungs and as per the study these chemicals harm it, by altering the gene expression pertaining to the cilia function as well as production.

The study carried out the testing of e-cigarettes and found that 90% of them have the flavoring chemicals diacetyl and 2 as well as 3-pentanedione are present.

The chemical diacetyl is also found in food flavors like butter flavored microwave popcorn, candy as well as baked goods. Though for foods it is not known to be harmful but only when it is inhaled that if turns dangerous.

HOW ARE LUNGS AFFECTED
Impaired cilia function is responsible for lung conditions like asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. An associate professor at the Harvard University also mentioned that even though chemicals are used for flavoring e-cigs but it is known as to how they impact the health. This study therefore throws light on the chemicals that are responsible for harming the lungs and how.

The chemical Diacetyl was earlier linked to lung conditions like bronchilitis obliterans, a lung condition also dubbed as popcorn lung for a reason that it was first found in workers of popcorn processing facilities after they inhaled artificial butter flavor.

As per researchers the present standards of safe limits of chemical exposure for workers are not enough and need to change as even low levels of the chemical does affect gene expression.

Thus as per researchers, today e-cigarette users are heating as well as inhaling the flavoring chemicals are in common use and users do not know that they are not tested for inhalation safety as well.

 

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Dystonia – All You Need to Know About This Common and Complex Condition

Though not a very common condition in India, it is the third most common condition in the USA behind Parkinson’s disease and tremor. Around 2.5 lac people there are known to be suffering from this condition. As far as the age group for this condition is concerned, there is none and can affect anyone from a child to old people irrespective of races, religion or ethnicities.

A deep part of the brain that helps to control movement is known as basal ganglia. The condition is a result of abnormal functioning of this part. This part is responsible for management of movements of the body and prevention of unwanted movements. But, if you are suffering from dystonia and you lose control over the movement management causing repetition of movements, positions and postures besides twisting as well. Not only can it affect the different parts of the body like the legs, trunk, arms and face, it can also affect your vocal cords.

DYSTONIA

This condition can adversely affect your daily routines disrupting one of many of the functions. For example if dystonia affects your neck then you will experience difficulty even in eating, chewing and swallowing. In-spite of it not being a life threatening condition it does tend to cause embarrassment and depression in many, thus resulting into emotional distress. As a result there are many support groups working to help people work on their mental health even though separate treatment for mental health is needed in-order to cope up with the challenges that that condition brings along.

AGE GROUP DIVISION
Dystonia is known to affect different age groups right from the age 0 to that of 20 and older. The Childhood onset of the condition is known to begin between 0 – 12 years, while adolescent onset stars around 3-20 years and adult onset starts above 20 years of age.

SYMPTOMS
At times this condition is not easily diagnosed and could be mistaken as stress or some sort of psychological disorder. Diagnosis therefore is not easy. In its initial stages dystonia symptoms are arise only after specific tasks or movements but when it advances it can also occur during rest period. As it affects the same group of muscles it leads to repetitive movement over time. The process of development is generally slow and the symptoms are confined to local region. Different types of dystonia exhibit different symptoms like for example blepharospasm dystonia shows symptoms like repetitive and blinking at speed, eye irritation and sensitivity to light. Even as far as progress of the different condition in dystonia are concerned they vary from people to people. In some people it might be a gradual progression while in some a speed one. In some it could be all plateaus. In its advanced form it could lead to a lot of postural issues and deformities, torso contortions, involuntary rhythmic movements and more.

Treatment
Either medication or surgery or botox injections are used for treatment purpose. They could be used separately or in conjunction with each other. Botox as well as medications do help in blocking the communication between the nerve and the muscle and slow down the abnormal postures and movements

 

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Depression and Anxiety can be as Harmful to Health as Smoking

A recent study has revealed that people who have high anxiety levels as well as depression are at 65% higher risk of developing a heart condition, 64% at a higher risk of developing a stroke, 50% high risk of developing high blood pressure and 87% higher risk of developing arthritis.

Comparatively, even people who smoke and are obese are at the same level of risk thus pointing out the importance of mental health condition with respect to physical health. The lead author Andrea Niles of the University of California San Francisco said that hence smoking and obesity as well as mental health conditions like depression and anxiety pose the same risk.

Depression and Anxiety can be as Harmful to Health as Smoking

Yet, cancer is not included in the list of conditions that are a result of depression and anxiety. The co-author Aoife O Donovan from UCSF has said that the study is similar to the other studies in terms of the psychological distress being a strong predictor of many types of cancers. She also asked people not to attribute cancer diagnosis to stress, depression and anxiety history.

Niles also said that the study was the first one that compared between anxiety and depression with smoking and obesity as potential risk factors for health conditions that could be life threatening.

In a nutshell, the study is only brings to light the fact that mental health is to be cared for equally and has the ability to do equal harm as addictions or unfit habits do. And that it is time that people shun away the taboo around mental health and habits and take a step to consult mental health practitioners if they are facing issues like depression, anxiety or more so that they can be treated not only for it but also to avoid their physical health being affected.

 

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Dead People Do Know That They are Dying – A study

In a spine chilling revelation from researchers at the New York’s Stony Brook University School of Medicine – human beings are aware of their death moments after they die. The reason that the study cited was that even though the heart stops, the brain is stDead People Do Know That They are Dyingill alive and active, for a short time, albeit. This is the time that the person registers what all is happening around him.

Dead People Do Know That They are Dying - A study

As per the researchers the time of death is when the heart stops beating. But, even though the heart stops beating, the blood circulation to the brain takes time to cease and it’s not as immediate as the heart stopping to beat. This process can be short or even take hours to complete. Hence, during this time technically the brain is alive for a while until the blood circulation stops helping the dead people understand what is happening around them.

It’s a known fact that many people have a visual as well as auditory memory of everything happening around them even when theoretically, they should not be. There have been many instances about people coming back from death. It is known as Near Death Experience or NDE and people like Anita Moorjani, a well- known case of NDE has told the world that she was aware of everything that was happening around her when she was in the near death stage.

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The lead researcher of the study at the New York University said that the people who have deep near death experiences tend to bounce back with great positivity and also self-transform. They become community helps and philanthropic as well.

This study is astonishing in its way and does have the ability to spark debates on life after death as well as about human consciousness.

 

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Rehabilitation After Bypass Surgery for Diabetics

Bypass surgery or CABG (Coronary artery bypass grafting) is done to restore the blood flow in the blocked arteries by creating a bypass to the heart using arteries from other parts of the body. But, this does not mean that the patient is free from coronary heart disease. The coronary heart disease or atherosclerosis progress does not stop and the fatty material does continue to deposit on the artery walls thus turning them narrow and reducing blood flow to other sites as well.

Hence, the patient has to take help of the healthcare provider after surgery to work on the factors that lead to coronary heart disease progress and treat the existing one. The following treatments can help you cope up with the surgery and lead a healthy life post surgery.

Rehabilitation After by Pass Surgery

Medications
Usually the patient is discharged post 5 days of surgery but in case of complications they patient may have to stay longer. The patient and family members are made to understand about the medications, doses, diet and rehabilitation plan. The medications are designed to improve survival rate, decrease the risk of complications and also treat the chest pain if it reoccurs. The medications include Beta blockers, Nitrates as well as ACE inhibitors and are given based on patient’s condition. A therapy called lipid lowering therapy is generally given to all patients after CABG and is recommended to patients with normal lip levels as well. The most common medications used for lowering cholesterol levels are called Statins.

Wound Healing – The patient is given instruction around taking care of the wound before he or she is discharged from the hospital. It is very important the patient adheres to these instruction else complications could arise. The patient needs to avoid lifting heavy objects, bending or driving entirely besides fast shoulder movements like golf or tennis for atleast 6 to 8 weeks.
Alarms – If the patient develops any of the following symptoms within 14 days of the surgery, seek immediate medical assistance.

  • Rapid heart beats
  • Reddened skin, bleeding or Pus like discharge from incision
  • Fever more than 100.4 degree F

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Rehabilitation
Many hospitals have rehabilitation programs designed for people who have undergone rehabilitation. They are comprehensive and well-structured and include components of health care like stress, anxiety and depression healing, reducing risk factors and exercise.

Exercise – The intensity and period of exercises varies from patient to patient and the coronary heart disease condition as well. Initially the exercises are less and eventually they are increased. The exercise plan is devised after considering heart health, fitness level of the patient, supervised or not, limitations and more. It can start from 5 minutes a day for five days a week and go on to 20 minutes over a period of time, which includes warmup, exercise and cooling down. The cooling down phase is important as avoiding it may increase the risk of complications related to the heart.

Cardiac Risk Factors management
Healthy Diet – A dietician usually prepares a chart that needs to be followed by the patient in order to lose weight as well as reduce cholesterol levels.
Go addiction free – Addictions like smoking or alcohol can be too harmful and hence should be stopped completely in order to reduce the risk of heart attack.

Diabetes Management – People with diabetes are at higher risk of getting complications after surgery. Hence, it is vital to control blood sugar levels. This can be achieved by maintaining a healthy life style, keeping blood sugar under control, besides diabetes medication orally or insulin as prescribed.

Psychological Treatment – After bypass the patient can feel depressed, anxious and stressed. Its more common in women who undergo CABG at a young age.

Follow Ups– The doctor will tell you about the hospital visits after the surgery. Following the routine of visits set by the doctor will help you avoid any kind of recurrence of heart problems. As health improves the visits may decrease and there could be a change in the health plan.

 

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Genetically Modified Virus Effective in Cancer Treatment – An Overview

The study published in the journal for Cancer Research states that scientists have developed a new technique in which they use a genetically modified virus for killing cancer cells and even has the ability to destroy their hiding places. Named as the enadenotucirev, this novel dual action virus targets cancer cells as well as the healthy cells that are tricked into cancer cell protection by the immune system of the body called fibro-blasts.

Genetically Modified Virus Effective in Cancer Treatment

The therapy used presently for killing the tricked viruses of cancer may also kill the fibroblast cells leading to toxicity. Carcinomas, the most common kind of cancer are found to start in the cells of the skin or in the tissues covering or lining internal organs like lungs, pancreas, breasts, colon, prostate and ovaries.
As per Kerry Fisher of Britain’s University of Oxford there hasn’t been any way where you can kill the cancer cells and the fibroblasts that are known to protect them as well, without causing any harm to the other parts of the body. Therefore, this technique that can be used for targeting the cancer cells as well as the fibroblasts is definitely cited as a vital development in reducing the suppression inside the carcinomas as well as initiating the normal immune process.

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The team included some genetic instructions before publishing the study in the journal order the infected cancer cells to produce a protein called bispecific T cell engager, that has the ability to bind and stick two cells together. Here the first end is fibroblasts and the second end is T cells – a kind of immune cell that kills defective cells. The result, T cells started killing attached fibroblasts. The team also carried out the testing of the virus on a human bone marrow successfully to find that the process did not result in creating any toxicity to the rest of the body or any inappropriate activation of T cells.

The clinical trials of Enadenotucirev have already started for carcinoma treatment and in the upcoming year it will begin its clinical trials of finding out the safety and affectivity of it on people suffering from cancer.

 

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All You Need to Know About Ganglion Cyst

Many of you might not have heard about this condition but it does exist and is a common condition for the age group of 20 to 40 years. A ganglion cyst is a tumor or swelling caused either on the tendon viz. the tissue that connects muscle to the bone or the top of a joint. The cyst is sticky and colourless and looks like a sac of liquid. The size of the cyst may vary and it could feel spongy as well. There could either be on single cyst or one large one and multiple number of smaller ones around it connected by a common stalk within the deeper tissue. Also known as Bible cyst, is not harmful and around 70% people experience it in their lifetime. Ganglion cysts are very rare in age-groups less than 10 years. Ganglion cysts usually develop on the back of the hand. They are found at the joint of the wrist but can also be seen on the side of the palm. The other rare but possible sites of cyst include mucous cysts occurring right below the cuticle on the fingertip, the foot top, as pea sized bumps on the palm finger base, as well as the outer part of the ankle as well as the knee.

Ganglion Cyst

Causes
As on day the causes of the cyst are not known. As per doctors it could be due to breakdown of the tissue joint as a result of some trauma. Another theory mentions joint capsule fault or in that of the tendon sheath leading to joint tissue bulge.

Symptoms

  • If you have a bulge or bump of changing mass.
  • If the diameter is 1-3 cm and it does not move
  • There is a sudden swelling or a gradual one
  • If it is recurring after a certain period of time
  • Ganglion cysts do cause pain followed by acute trauma even if they don’t appear.
  • If it pains it could get worse due to joint motion
  • In cysts that are connected to the tendon, you feel weakness in the finger

Medical Advice
Medical evaluation of the cyst is important whether or not you have all the symptoms. This will help the doctor in making it sure and offering a suitable line of treatment. The doctor could advise on an ultrasound or test using the cyst fluid. At times even a MRI could be advised by the doctor though it is an expensive procedure.

Treatment
Ganglion Cysts can be treated with hot bags at home. Sometimes if there is pain, doctor may prescribe a pain killer as well. Surgical or cosmetic removal of cysts of bigger size can be done but they could reoccur as well.

 

 

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Swimming Can Reduce Mental Stress – An Overview

As per a new study swimming can help reduce symptoms of anxiety or depression. Mental Illness is not a taboo anymore as it used to be in the earlier times. Today mental health is being given as much importance as physical health not only worldwide but in India too. Due to the hectic lifestyles of Indians with extensive workloads and deadlines to match, people suffer from a lot of stress and anxiety. It has already affected millions of people worldwide. Mental health foundation statistics say that in Britain one fifth of the adult population is known to be affected by Mental Health Issues.

Swimming Can Reduce Mental Stress

While discussions are already rife around methods that could help in reducing symptoms of stress and anxiety, there are many different methods and ways coming to light for the same. This includes taking help of mental health professionals, following a proper balanced diet and even swimming. Apparently, an organisation call Swim England carried out a YouGov poll on around 1.4 million adults in UK, to find that Swimming did have a positive effect on their mental health. Almost half a million people of UK who swim and also have faced mental health issues have mentioned that swimming on a regular basis has shown a positive effect and reduced the number of visits they do to the mental health specialist. 43 percent said that swimming made them happy, while 26 percent of the swimmers said that they feel motivated and 15 of them said swimming helps them cope up with the stress that comes along in their daily lives.

As per the head of mental health activities, Hayley Jarvis, engaging into physical activities on a regular basis is good for the body. What the mind says shows the significance of exercising for physical as well as mental well-being. The more active you are physically, the lower are the levels of stress on a daily basis.

This voting campaign was launched on the ‘World Mental Health Day’, as a part of the global initiative in celebrating mental health and creating awareness about reducing the taboo around the same.

As per Ian Cumming, chair of the Swimming and Health Commission in UK, swimming is a very useful activity for the body and research is a good proof of the same. Simply being in water works well for restoration of the body, particularly outdoor swimming. In UK due to the rising population experiencing stress and anxiety issues,

 

The department of Psychiatry at Rajarajeswari Medical College and Hospital strives to achieve and follow “A healthy mind in a healthy body‘. Our dedicated team

 

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Top 5 Medical Tourism Destinations in the World

We all know about the recent spurt in medical Tourism, but what you might not know and perhaps, would want to know is,  names of the countries that top this list. Before we look into that, here’s some information on medical tourism. As per international statistics, 11 million people from the USA opted for medical tourism in 2016. Now, that is a huge number. Furthermore, the medical tourism industry is slated to grow by 25% in the coming years. People are choosing medical tourism alternative for reasons like quality healthcare at impressive costs, convenience and more. Lets run-down 5 of the most sought-after medical tourism destinations in the world.

BRAZIL – As per World Health Organization, Brazil tops the list of medical tourism destinations in the world. With over 40 JCI accredited hospitals and world’s best experts under their belts, Brazil is a one-stop solution for healthcare needs around cosmetic and plastic surgery. The reason it is third on the list of most visited countries for cosmetic and plastic surgery is due to its quality services at affordable rates.

MEXICO – Mexico is one of the most preferred destinations for medical healthcare as it is known to reduce the medical costs by a staggering 40% to 65%. It boasts of over 98 JCI accredited hospitals and offers advanced treatment procedures in areas of cosmetic surgery and dentistry. Most of the people residing in the USA are known to travel to Mexico for their healthcare needs.

INDIA – India is brimming with medical tourists as on day and the reason it stands in this list is its ability reduce healthcare costs by a mammoth 65% to 90% as compared to the USA, making it one of the most visited countries for healthcare services. India is a preferred location not only due to its affordability or quality healthcare services but because there is zero waiting time for scheduling surgeries and living here is a relaxing experience as well.

THAILAND – The land of the white elephants as it is known, Thailand is also famous for its pristine beaches. But many of us aren’t aware of the fact that it is also a popular destination for medical tourism. You can not only reduce your medical expenditure by 50% to 75% but also avail facilities like private recovery gardens, Thai massage and other relaxation therapies at affordable prices.

TURKEY – The reason Turkey is on the list of most favored destinations for medical tourism is that it offers zero waiting times for services of healthcare particularly like transplant, neurosurgery, genomic medicine, radiation therapy for cancer. The Turkish airlines also offers discounts for medical tourists and the best part is the bottom line –  you end up saving around 50% to 65% of your money as compared to the USA.

Well, healthcare has broadened its horizons and is available across borders at affordable prices. Hence, umpteen people across countries are opting for medical tourism.