Corona Virus – Facts Overview

As the corona virus or Wuhan virus scare is catching like wild fire and as the number of infected people across the world. The cases in china are about to reach 15000 and over 300 people are said to be already affected. The virus is on the spread across the world as it is highly contagious and the UN has already declared it as a medical emergency. While the world is on high alert and is also flown out their nationals from the country, the clouds of this virus causing a havoc are already mounting. Here are a few tips to keep the corona virus infection at bay.

  1. Wash your hands with soap and water on regular basis or with alcohol based disinfectant
  2. While sneezing or coughing cover your mouth with a tissue or hand
  3. Avoid close contact with people suffering from cold or flu like symptoms
  4. Do not eat under cooked meat or eggs
  5. Avoid contact with farm animals or the wild
  6. Stay indoors at home when sick
  7. Clean all objects and surfaces that are dirty or touched
  8. Avoid touching your mouth, eyes or hands with dirty hands
  9. Use a mask whenever outdoor
  10. Always carry a disinfectant along when outdoor

There’s also a debate around the transfer of the virus without showing symptoms. While the Germans are firm that asymptomatic transmission is possible, nothing is yet officially conveyed.

Well, as the cases in China keep exploding as the days pass by, the risk of it spreading across continents is always there. As of now the process of developing a vaccine for controlling the virus is on but it might take almost a year before it comes to the pharmacy. Until then, prevention is the only way out. So, stay safe and clean to keep the condition out of harm’s way.

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BRAT Diet For Stomach Health

If You are suffering from stomach related issues then, one of the most recommended diets is the BRAT diet. For the uninitiated, BRAT is an acronym standing for Banana, rice, Applesauce and toast. The reason behind recommending these foods when having stomach problems is that they are light on the stomach and bland as well. Stomach problems can lead to nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and fatigue and the BRAT diet definitely plays a role in keeping you energized without side effects.

Brat Diet For Stomach Health

The BRAT diet is about eating bananas, applesauce, rice and toast in abundance as these foods are bland I taste and easy on your digestive systems. Well, if you cannot eat the same food over and over until you get well, you may choose from other bland foods like weak tea, apple juice or soda, broth, boiled potatoes as well as cooked cereals.

Though you need to avoid dairy products like milk and more as well as oily, fried and spicy food. You also need to avoid raw or uncooked food as well as food that is very hot or very cold. Stay away from alcohol as well as coffee or other foods containing caffeine.

Once 24 hours of illness have passed you may consume clear liquids again, sipping on at an interval of 10 minutes. Try drinking water, chicken broth, apple juice and similar liquids.

Although the BRAT diet is a common recommendation by Doctors in USA, children and infants are excluded form the recommendation.

The reason being that these food cannot fulfil the body requirements in terms of micro nutrients and proteins.

But, if you are suffering from severe bout of diarrhea then you need to seek medical assistance immediately. Also in case of severe abdominal or rectal pain, black or bloody stools or a high fever or above 102 F.

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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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Board Games Can Keep Cognitive Degradation At Bay – A Study

We all know that board games are a fun way to be engaged in play in doors particularly for kids. But, here’s some news. A new study carried out by the Researchers at Edinburgh university of United Kingdom reveals that board games could actually help Older Adults avert off their cognitive decline. The paper was authored by Drew Altschul of School of philosophy, Pscychology and Language sciences in association with Professor Deary, director of Edinburgh Lothian Birth Cohorts and published in the Journals of Gerontology.

FBHDTJ Still-life selection of board games (Monopoly, Chess, Cluedo, Scrabble) with playing cards and gambling chips

The study was carried out on 1091 subjects born in the year 1936 for assessment of their mental and cognitive capabilities. The researchers did the evaluation for cognitive functioning across ages 11, 70, 73, 79 with the help of 14 different standard cognitive tests.

The study included asking questions to participants in the age group of 70 and 76 about how many times across the week they indulged in board games like bingo, chess, crosswords, cards, bingo and more . The researchers also took into account confounding factors like education, early life cognitive function, activity levels, sex and health issues to name a few, as a part of their analysis.

The results unleashed that the people who were more into board games in their later year’s post 70’s were better off maintaining their cognitive functioning. Particularly those older adults who indulged in analog games post 70’s showed relative less decline in cognitive abilities across 11 and 70 years and also between the age of 70 and 79.

Altschul, one of the study leads says “ these latest findings add to evidence that being more engaged in activities during the life course might be associated with better thinking skills in later life”.

While coauthor thinks that there is a possibility that there is an interpretation of results as push to start playing board games and avoid cognitive decline.

*Sourced from Internet

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Early Signs Of Diabetes Type 2 You Must Not Ignore

Also known as the silent killer, diabetes can do a lot of damage if you do not manage to understand the early signs of it. Type 2 diabetes is a very common form of diabetes and is a result of lack of exercise and obesity.

Many a times your skin shows you the symptoms and it is preventable if you exercise and maintain normal weight. As per reports around 90% of cases of diabetes are apparently preventable if measures are taken on time. Furthermore, if diabetes type 2 is left untreated then it could also lead to life threatening health complications like heart attack, kidney failure and strokes.

So, why are the warning signs not taken seriously, is one question that haunts many. The reason could be as simple as not taking them as signs but simple health issues that could fade away with time or just taking notice and delaying checkup till it’s forgotten.

Well, let us run down some of the signs that could help you alert around type 2 diabetes.

  1. Frequent Washroom trips – high blood sugar means kidneys work hard to remove the excess sugar form the blood and hence it is considered to be an alarm for diabetes if one has to frequently wake up to go to pee.
  2. Frequent urge to drink water – Due to frequent urination, even the urge to drink water increases due to dehydration
  3. Fatigue – The energy levels of type 2 diabetes people are low due to deficiency of sugar through the blood stream to the body cells.
  4. Hunger pangs – Due to lack of energy people suffering from type 2 diabetes tend to feel hungry on a constant basis even if they’d have eaten recently enough
  5. Blurry Vision – At times high sugar could damage vision and result into blurred vision in one or both the eyes
  6. Yeast Infections – Excess sugar in body could lead to yeast infection. The affected areas could get red, sore or itchy.
  1. Tingling and Numbness – Due to rise in sugar levels people with this condition could experience tingling and numbess in their hands and feet. Known as neuropathy this condition has chances of worsening with time and hence early intervention is required.
  1. Skin Darkening – For people suffering from diabetes, dark, velvety and soft patches appear on skin anywhere around the armpits, groin or neck.

Perhaps, its not that difficult to be alarmed if we only pay attention at the signs. Early intervention could help deal with diabetes in a better way and also keep other life threatening conditions at bay.

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How Climatic Conditions Effect Mental Health

No a new idea really, as there have been studies earlier around relationship study between mental health and climatic conditions. But, as the climatic conditions seen to be changing drastically and global warming issues and more are becoming the talk of the town, even the psychological health issues are becoming the areas of focus.

The earlier studies primarily were carried out for a short period of time and only have been able to identify the links between mental health as well as temperature but the research till date only involves short time period and more focused on connection rather than causal factors. Moreover, this findings have so far not yielded any substantial conclusions. So, the researchers with this study are hoping to get answers to their questions that are not answered as yet.

The researchers for their study has gathered data from various sources including Californian emergency departments, collecting data and analyzing information from the data of mental health diagnosis visits during the period of 2005 – 2016.

They even mined for data around suicides in America during 1960 – 2016 period. These information was based on statuses that were individually self-reported. After drilling the climatic temperature in US down, the researchers managed to develop ‘’fine spatial and temporal scales”.

From the study the researchers concluded that the mental health outcomes decrease as the temperatures cool and the increase mental health issues with rise in temperatures. Statistically speaking they found that there was a rise in 0.48% rise in mental health visits with a rise in average monthly temperature of 10 F and even a rise in suicides by 0.35%

In short, the rise and drop in temperatures has a significant impact of the mental health because the authors of the study also showed stability in the estimates even when accounted for socio economic status and air conditioning adoption.

As for suicide rate, it rises only if there is a rise in temperature amid the growing season because growing season is all about crop yields. If the temperature rises, the crop yield reduces and leads to financial issues that in turn increase the risk of suicides.

*Sourced from Internet

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Horns Of The Dilemma – Dairy Good Or Bad For Health

Though fruits and veggies are known to be healthy options as far as food is concerned there are conflicting views over dairy products and even their consumption levels on a regular basis. Milk and milk products in plenty are a must for kids and adolescents as milk is a rich source of calcium. Though milk is good, it comes under saturated fats and hence for people on a diet skimmed milk is a better option.

As per global standards the average consumption is around 2 to 2.5 servings a day for children. Organizations like USDA and National Institute of Health (NIH) dairy is a vital source of magnesium, phosphorous, Protein and Vitamin D. A deficiency in calcium could raise the risk of osteoporosis as bones become weak and brittle.

Having said that there are conflicting views around consumption of dairy products. As per a systematic review as well as meta-analysis says that increase in dairy consumption increases the risk of osteoporosis. But, not all studies are included in the said analysis.

Another long term study of Sweden that included 61000 women and 45000 men revealed a potential link between high milk consumption as well as high rate of bone fractures. Though a Japanese study carried out over 94,980 people revealed that a rise in consumption of milk did lower the mortality risk.

Even the American heart Institution (AHA) has said that saturated fats could lead to increase in cholesterol as well as heart disease. Hence, some full fat dairy products do not come in the list of heart healthy diet recommendations. Furthermore, the national lung and blood institute has advised people to limit their dairy intake and use low fat dairy in their diet.

There is an article with umpteen analyses as well as reviews that do not believe that saturated fats cause heart disease. It also states that the saturated fats could decrease the risk of diabetes that is linked to obesity.

So, while there is conflict with studies to support, dairy could be a healthy option if taken in limit. It could be helpful for people suffering from type 2 diabetes.

*Sourced from Internet

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How Much Fiber Intake For Prevention Of Diseases

A new study revealed exactly how much fiber is required for keeping the chronic conditions as well as premature mortality at bay. The objective of the study is to set the guideline for consumption of fiber besides bringing to light information around the carbs responsible for protection against non-communicable diseases as well as curb weight gain.

The author of the study namely Professor Jim Mann, of Otago University New Zealand and the author of the paper Andrew Reynolds is a postdoctoral research fellow at Otago’s Dunedin School of Medicine.

The study was carried out by Reynolds and colleagues by examination of a data that had 185 observational studies that included 135 million person-years besides 58 clinical trials that involved the participation of 4600 people. The study analysis was carried across 40 years.

As per prof. Mann, the motivation behind this study was analysis of previous reviews and meta-analysis. The scientists studied chronic condition incidences as well as premature deaths resulting from them. The conditions included cardiovascular diseases, stroke, colon cancer, type 2 diabetes, cancers such as esophageal cancer, endometrial cancer, prostate cancer to name a few.

The results of the study revealed that people who consume more fiber daily are 15-30% less prone to premature deaths or any of the aforementioned conditions. It also determined that daily consumption of 25 -29 gms of fibre is good for health. Though consumption of more than 29 gms of fibre could be even more beneficial.

Having said that, the authors cleared that the study did not present any side effects of fibre consumption but too much fibre could also be harmful particularly for people with iron and mineral deficiencies. Even consumption of whole grains in excess can lead to iron deficiency as per researchers.

Lastly, the study also found that consumption of high amount of fibre results does relate to less weight and cholesterol levels.

Prof. Mann says “ Health benefits of fiber are supported by over 100 years of research into its chemistry, physical properties, physiology and effects on metabolism.

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Finances and Aging – The Connection

A recent study has revealed that people who have to suffer from economic hardships for even as less as 4 years are prone to ageing faster as compared to their peers who are economically stable. The researchers at the Department of Public health at the Copenhagen University of Denmark carried out a study to compare economically well to do, late middle aged adults and adults experiencing financial issues.

The study involved over 5575 adults in their late middle ages with a benchmark hardship of 60% less than that of the national average over 22 years period. Out of these 5575, 18% were having financial hardship during the period of 1987-2008. Lead by Rikki Lund, the team studied and analyzed cognitive as well as physical functions like chair rise, jump, balance, grip and strength.

The study found that people who experienced poverty over 4 years performed less as compared to people of the same age who were living without any financial problems. The findings suggest that the absence of economic problems protects from aging faster while the opposite not only increases ageing but also the blood CRP levels.

When people are less capable of doing physical activities earlier than then the others of the same age it is called accelerated aging. It could be a result of higher inflammatory markers like C-reactive protein (CRP) and IL-6 or poor cognitive functioning.

In the Western society, aging population means more healthcare costs and hence healthy ageing is promoted. The study has results that match the earlier studies with did show an inverse connection between economic difficulties and physical abilities besides cognitive difficulties that have been already reported.

Having said that, there is one story that has a different story to tell. It states that a human’s perception about economic hardships is more significant indicator and not their real financial condition. The study does come with a few limitations though, which include factors like not considering data of various societies, not considering any other potential confounding factors responsible or even diseases and conditions that are not a result of poverty but still could affect longevity and speed ageing.

*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.

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