The Role Of Legumes In Heart Health

We all know how a nutritious and balanced diet can help us live longer by keeping heart ailments at bay. A recent study carried out to find out the role of legumes in heart health reveals that legumes. Though it’s never been easy to know the benefits of food on an individual basis.

Five color legumes for healthy , Soy bean, Navy bean or white bean, Black beam, Red bean and Green bean,

But, recently researchers of the review called Advances in Nutrition took up the task of understanding the significance of legumes like lentils, peas and beans etc. around heart health.

Primarily, they focused on cardiovascular diseases like coronary heart disease, stroke, myocardial infarction besides looking into hypertension, obesity and diabetes. They chose cardiovascular diseases because it is one of the most common causes of mortality and even one of the most expensive ones. It is known to cause US 1 billion dollars a day.

They used the data analysis of Eurpoean Association which recently carried out a series of systematic reviews as well as meta-analysis for Diabetics study. The researchers hope that these results could be quite a help in updating the recommendations already made around the role of legumes in preventing as well as treating cardio-metabolic diseases.

The data review and comparison with people with lowest and highest intake of legumes revealed that dietary pulses that had legumes which either did or did not include other legumes did decrease coronary heart disease, obesity incidence and hypertension.

Though the researchers were able to find a positive relationship between intake of legumes in higher amounts and reduction in certain parameters related to cardiovascular risks, the conclusion they came to are muted relatively.

As per the researchers “The overall certainty of the evidence was graded as low for CVD incidence and ‘very low for all the other outcomes.”

Therefore, the co author of the study Dr Hana Kahleova said “ Americans eat less than one serving of legumes per day, on average. Simply adding more beans to our plates could be a powerful tool in fighting heart disease and bringing down blood pressure.

*Sourced from Internet

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Sports Hobbies For Middle Aged Women – Benefits

A study around post-menopausal women published in the journal Frontiers in Endocrinology reveals that physical activity that involves sports in leisure time helps in managing the blood lipid profile well, thus reducing cardiovascular conditions as blood lipid profile is a market of heart conditions.

As per Karvinen and his team, after menopause the risk of cardiovascular conditions increases significantly in women and lipid profile is a reliable marker to measure heart health. He and his colleagues investigated around 193 menopausal women participants of the age group 47-55 from Finland, registered for the Estrogenic Regulation of Muscle Apoptosis (ERMA) study. The study is co-authored by Dr Mathew Jergenson of Minnesota Medical School and University in Minneapolis. The reason behind conducting the study as per him was to explore if physical activity did have a role in cardiovascular risk factors.

He says “It is well known that physical activity has health benefits, yet it is less clear to what extent physical activity prevents negative changes in lipid profile while women are in their menopausal transition. The participants were monitored for physical activity levels in leisure time, generally and specifically also, using accelerometers and had to answer questions as well.

Leisure is the time that is not related to routine daily work be it housework or commuting and includes sport or recreation activities in free time.

The researchers found out that there was indeed a connection between more activities during leisure time and lowering of cholesterol levels particularly (LDL) as well as with high levels of cholesterol (HDL). Karvin reports that indeed the leisure time physical activities were related to healthy lipid profiles. But, that does not mean that the negative changes in lipid profile during menopause can be fully done away with due to leisure time sports activities.

The author also said that leisure time physical activities will underscore the adverse atherogenic changes in the cardiovascular risk factors in middle aged women who are healthy. Hence, sport related activities in leisure are good.

*Sourced from Internet

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Omega 3 Fatty Acids And Health Benefits

Some of us are definitely aware of omega 3 fatty acids and their benefits. But, many of us are not aware that fatty acids are present not only in animals but plants also. The animal based fatty acids include doosahexaenoic acid (DHA) as well as eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA). While the animal based omega 3 fatty acids comes from fish oils, plant based come from plant sources. These sources contain alpha-lionelic acid (ALA), that can be converted into Omega-3 fatty acids of the body.

But, most of us are only aware about the health benefits of animal based fish oils with EPA and DHA. But, many of us again aren’t aware about the amount of omega 3, fatty acids that our body requires, even though there is no set standard for intake of the same.

Many experts believe and recommend omega 3 fatty acids for people suffering from cardiovascular conditions particularly higher doses for people having high cholesterol levels. Prescribed medications that are FDA approved are available for people with conditions rather than the supplements.

Omega 3 acids are recommended only for adults and children should not be given any supplements of omega 3 acids before consulting the doctor. Though natural sources of omega 3 fatty acids can be consumed by all irrespective of ages, only if you have no significant allergies around the same.

Natural Sources of omega 3 fatty acids include Cod liver, Soybeans and tofu, Walnuts, Salmon, trout, tuna and sardines, to name a few. The international organization AHA recommends adults for males and females except pregnant women to increase the intake of omega 3 fatty acids

Even avoiding the intake of omega 6 fatty acids that include eggs, meat as well as oil can help in increasing the levels of omega 3 fatty acids in blood. Balancing of omega 3 fatty acids to that of omega 6 can help you manage many health conditions in a better way and reduce the risk of certain conditions as well. As per reports people in USA consume 14-25 times more omega 6 fatty acids as compared to omega 3 fatty acids and this imbalance is not good for health, certainly.

Having said that, omega 3 fatty acids supplements should not be consumed without consulting your physician because they do have certain side effects particularly pregnant women with a diabetes risk should avoid them.

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Few Good Apps For Stroke Survivors

We all know that after you get a stroke it takes a long time for your body to come back to its normal functioning. India also is under a high stroke burden already. Across the world stroke is known to be the second most common cause of death. Ischemic strokes are known to account for over 87 percent of all strokes.

Stroke impacts various parts and functioning of the body. This includes mental health issues like depression and anxiety as well as movement issues like paralysis besides issues like bowel control loss, urinary incontinence, swallowing difficulty and visual impairment.

Though if the treatment is done immediately, the chances of recovery are faster. As per a survey the people who are provided critical care within 3 hours of first symptoms of stroke, have shown less disability post 3 months as compared to those who haven’t. In today’s tech times where there are applications available for all, lets run through some of the apps to help you with health and fitness after stroke

Medisafe – This is one app that is like an assistant to you. It reminds you of your doses and tracks your intake too so that you do not miss or double up by mistake. If you are on drugs you do tend to forget your doses.

Constant Therapy – This app is designed for people that are trying to recover from stroke, aphasia or brain injury. It is loaded with 65 different task categories, over a lac different exercises and over 10 difficulty levels. It is developed by scientists at the Boston University.

Cozi – This app is able to manage multiple schedules and is an ideal solution for stroke survivors who are under the care of multiple survivors. It includes a calendar that is color coded and helps manage days with reminders for medications, appointments and more. Managing groceries is also easy as the app comes with to do lists and helps ensure that nothing is missed.

Stop, Breathe & Think – This is an app that concentrates on reducing stress which is known to be a high risk factor for strokes. The main objective of the app is to reduce stress so as to curb the risk of strokes in the future. With meditation, acupressure, meditation and breathing exercises videos it helps calm you and bring you peace from within.

VocalEyes AI – Stroke can sometimes damage the brain areas which takes care of signals from the eyes. This can affect the eyes and lead to double vision or vision loss of a part. Vocaleyes acts as the computer vision for the visually challenged. With the help of machine learning it helps users with identification of objects the are deal with on a daily basis. You need to simply take a photo and the app will tell you what it is including currency denominations, faces, emotions, text, brands and more.

Well, Technology is upgrading day by day and it has already proved to be a boon too in many ways than one.

*Sourced from the Internet

After 50 Alcohol Consumption Ain’t That Risky?

Addiction to alcohol ain’t good for your health, is what we are all aware off. The consequences of the same include cancers of certain type, liver damage, and heart as well as brain disease too. Having said that there are studies about health benefits of drinking in limit as well. One such recent study has found that alcohol intake in moderation does protect against mortality due to cardiovascular diseases.

After 50 Alcohol Consumption

The study published in Journal of Alcohol and Drugs and lead by a team of Boston medical center in Massachusetts presents a fresh approach towards the long going debate on whether moderate drinking is good for health.

As per the researchers, the studies carried out earlier were not accurate enough. The reason was that the study included participants of age above 50. The researchers argue that people who have passed away before 50 due to alcohol consumption are not included in the study. Hence, people who aren’t alive cannot participate in a cohort study.

As per Dr. Timothy Naimi, alcohol addicts who are alive at 50 could have been healthy before and also could have been drinking within limits also. The authors were of the opinion that around 40 percent of the deaths due to alcohol intake were before the age of 50 years, meaning the deaths due to alcohol intake are not taken into consideration at all leading to ignoring the dangers of it.

The analysis showed that age played a major role in the risk levels associated with alcohol. The rate of alcohol related deaths in people between the age group of 20 – 49 was 35.8 percent. They also studied individual of age above 65 years. The study did show that over 35 percent of the deaths occurred due to alcohol intake but they also found that around 80 percent of the deaths in this age group.

They also found a vast difference when they took into consideration the age group of 20-49 years and the lost number of years. The number of years saved by drinking were around 14.5 percent only.

*Sourced from the Internet

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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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On World Heart Day Decide on a Healthy Oil for Cooking

It is not secret that India tops the list of mortalities due to cardiac arrests and diseases. The reasons obviously point out to many, and unhealthy lifestyle is one of the main ones. A healthy lifestyle is an amalgamation of a balanced diet, a fitness regime that is followed on a regular basis and addiction free. As per a leading nutritionist, though food forms a significant part of your lifestyle, it’s not just about the type of food that is consumed. A lot of things are associated with food, it’s the way the food is cooked, served, consumed as well as the time when you consume it.

On World Heart Day Decide on a Healthy Oil for Cooking

Also, when anyone says oil, everyone seems to be rolling their eyes because, we feel that the real culprit of your unhealthy body is the oil. But, the fact is that oil is not bad as you would imagine it to be. It is a mix of different kinds of fats. Also, a healthy oil is a mixture of different kinds of fats. Hence, when you select your oil, it’s important that you check for a balance between the essential fats of it.

Here are a few tips to help you out with selection of a healthy oil for healthy cooking –

Loaded with Mono-saturated Fats – Mono-saturated fats are good for health and hence it’s good to choose an oil that is rich in mono-saturated fats. These fats solidify when kept in the fridge and transform into liquid when at room temperature.

More of Polyunsaturated fats – Poly unsaturated fats contain Omega 3 and Omega 6, which happen to be vital for the body. We all know that omega 3 is responsible for protecting our body against inflammation, thus protecting us against diseases. Our body is not capable of producing them and hence we need it to be there in our diet. Though Omega 3 is what we need more than omega 6, precisely in a ratio of 1:2 or 1:4.

Less of Trans Fats – Trans-fat are highly harmful to the body. To say the least, its best to avoid this fat. Trans-fats are formed when poly-saturated fats are transformed into solid. These fats are leading causes of heart diseases, high cholesterol as well as cancer.

Less of Saturated Fats– Saturated fats are known to be bad fat but apparently they come under the neutral category. You can have an intake of saturated fat but in limit. They are good but not as good as mono-saturated fat. Also, the bad saturated fats are the hydrogenated saturated fats that are man-made.

Lastly, fat is bad only when it is consumed in a quantity that is more than required. So, controlling eating habits is the key to healthy body.

 

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All You Need to Know About Terminal Illness

The term terminal illness means disease that is not curable and is expected to result in death of the patient over a course of time. It is a commonly used term for illnesses like cancer, heart disease of advanced stage, to name a few. When a person is said to be suffering from a terminal illness, there is near certainty that the patient is going to die in a course of time irrespective of the treatment. Once diagnosed with a terminal condition the patient knows that death is certain and the doctor informs the patient about the time left, in days, weeks, months or years.

Once a patient is diagnosed for terminal illness, the disease management process is decided. The options for it include continual of treatment, caregiving, hospice care and even physician assisted suicide. The decision making is done keeping the patient as well as the family in loop. Many a time patients with terminal illness experience anxiety around the nearing death as well as depression and hence requires psychotherapeutic treatment to help them deal with the same.

On the flip side, knowing about the terminal illness condition gives them time to get ready for advance treatment and care procedures as well as living will, to help them deal with end of life care effectively. Let us run through the different disease management or end of life care procedures for terminal illness patients.

Terminal Illness

Treatment Continuation

Palliative Care – Palliative care is more about after care of the physical needs of the patients post diagnosis. This includes emotional support, management of pain, psychological and spiritual care. It is a methodology that concentrates on improvement of quality of life of the patients and satisfaction besides helping family members deal and cope with the difficult situation.

Care Giving – Care giving is an integral part of terminal disease management. It involves keeping a nurse to take care of the person suffering from the condition. The care givers provide support like psychological support, food, assistance with movement and routine activities on a day to day basis.

Medications – Terminal patients who suffer from cancer related pain, need medications for relief. The medication prescribed varies based on the pain severity as well as status of disease. One of the common symptoms that terminal illness patients experience is dyspnea viz. breathing issues.

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Hospice Care – There is a misconception that people choosing hospice care live less compared to others, but study has proved that patients with hospice care live for the same span than others. It includes spending more time with family, friends or other inmates undertaking hospice disease management procedures. They usually stay away from a hospital at home or at an inpatient hospice facility.

Physician assisted Suicide (PAS) – This concept is legally approved only in a few countries in the world. It is when a patient decides to die with dignity that he or she opts for physician assisted suicide. The decision could be based on various different reasons like avoiding pain, disability, healthcare costs, family impact, personal and religious beliefs, to name a few. The patient has to give request in writing as well as orally after which the physicians offer them lethal drugs to help them die.

Well, some terminally ill patients stop all the treatments that they are undergoing to avoid side-affects while some go for even more aggressive treatment in a hope to increase their life span to the maximum. Some also opt for alternative methods of treatment that are non-proven as well as diet changes that are required.

Post Stroke Motor Skill Recovery Made Faster – Vagus Nerve Stimulation methodology

When a person suffers from a stroke, the nerve cells in the brain die away due to blockage in supply of blood. This results in failure in motor skills because the nerves are dead and the connection between the brain and the nerves is lost. The methods that are in use bypass the damaged area of the brain and use other brain cells to handle the lost function. As there are less number of neurons to spare, the patient has to face a movement disability that is long lasting. Now, researchers at the university of Texas, Dallas have found a way out to speed up the motor skill recovery process with the help of the vagus nerve stimulation methodology.

vagus-vagal-nerve-stimulation

The Vagus nerve is responsible for controlling the parasympathetic nervous system which in turn supervises numerous bodily functions like circulation and digestion. A device is implanted in the neck to achieve electrical stimulation. VSN, has been already used for treating depression and is a well- documented technique for fine tuning the functioning of the brain. The role of the VNS is to strengthen the path that leads to the neurons that is damaged after stroke. There has been a visible increase of three fold to five fold in the engaged neuron with VNS addition to the rehab.

The study determines that if we use the approach to deal with complicated motor skills, these improvements further improve the simple movements. It is a significant step in creating guidelines for using VS for post stroke therapy as per the researchers.

The results of the preclinical study carried out by the scientists here showed that the recovery in rodents on which the vagus stimulation (VNS) couple with physical therapy experiment was carried out, doubled long term recovery rate as compared to the therapy in use in these times.

The work is already published in the journal Stroke, and the trial is already on in humans in Dallas and 15 other sites in the country. The researchers have also developed an application that can help us monitor their performance and recovery process remotely too while they use it at home for improving their upper limb motor skills.

Rajarajeswari Heart Center, part of the esteem institute, Rajarajeswari Medical College and Hospital. Was established in May 2012 as an initial non-interventional department with 2D echocardiography, Treadmill Test and cardiac consultation.

SriDevi – A Victim of Sudden Cardiac Arrest – Know About Sudden Onset

The legendary actoress, a versatile actor, a super star, epitome of grace – Sridevi left every fan of hers across the world in shock as she made her way to the heavenly abode. Only 54 years of age, a fitness freak, one who maintained a healthy lifestyle all through her life passed away in such a shocker, all of a sudden cardiac arrest of massive nature.

It took so much time to come to terms with this saddening or heart wrenching fact and still is unbelievable because we lost her at such a young age of 54, in a film industry where actors like Salman, Shahrukh and Amir at 50 are still playing lead roles and setting the box office on fire with hundreds of crores their films rake in when they release.
Now that we know that sudden cardiac arrest can happen irrespective of aging here is a short note on what it is all about, the symptoms and treatment.

sudden-cardiac-arrest

Sudden Cardiac Arrest – It occurs all of a sudden without a clear sign. Symptoms might be there but not indicating clearly of a heart issue. In a sudden cardiac arrest case, the heart stops functioning suddenly due to some disturbance and disrupts blood flow. The blood supply to heart as a result is cut off. Sudden cardiac arrest requires prompt medical intervention in order to increase survival chances.

Symptoms – The symptoms usually are not very clear and may be underlying. This symptoms include Dizziness or fatigue, shortness of breath, heart palpitations and chest pain around 4 weeks before the attack. The symptoms vary in men and women. People who suffer from chest pain may have it secondary accompanied with primary pain of head, shoulder and neck or back.

Risk Factors
Though sudden cardiac arrest occurs out of the blue without clear signs, some risk factors responsible on a long run include diabetes, high cholesterol levels, smoking, obesity and high blood pressure to name a few. Sometimes genetics is also responsible for causing a sudden arrest to people who are fit and have no medical history of heart disease like Sridevi’s case.

Treatment – Sudden Cardiac arrest is a highly life threatening condition which can lead to death in most cases if not given immediate medical aid. You need to offer CPR as primary treatment or use a defibrillator for the same. You can even give chest compressions until the help arrives. If medical aid is provided instantly and properly, survival is possible.

Well, it’s advisable to follow a healthy lifestyle and go for a routine checkup one every year once you cross 50 years of age.

Rajarajeswari Heart Center, part of the esteem institute, Rajarajeswari Medical College & Hospital. Was established in May 2012 as an initial non-interventional department with 2D echocardiography, Treadmill Test and cardiac consultation

*source from the internet