makhana seeds

Health Benefits of Makhana Seed

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Category : Health & Care

  1. Lotus seeds contain flavonoids which are antioxidants and reverse the adverse effects of free radicals in the body and Health. They also prevent the inflammations in the body. These free radicals are the main cause of many degenerative diseases like diabetes mellitus, heart problems and even cancers.
  2. As lotus seeds are powerful antioxidants they also known as anti aging foods. Aging is also a result of adverse effects of free radicals in the body and Health.
  3. They are high in fiber so helps to avoid constipation. They help the body to remove the waste and thus prevent the accumulation of toxins.
  4. Lotus seeds regulate the blood pressure as they are low in sodium and high in potassium. So a very beneficial food for the hypertensive people.
  5. It can be digested by all age groups. You can also give them to children by little bit roasting and adding salt to it. This will be a healthy snack for them rather than chips and French fries.
  6. They are low in calories, fat and high in fiber so can be a good food for diabetics. They also helps to lower the blood sugar levels, so a healthy snack for diabetics.
  7. They are also recommended for women in pregnancy and post natal weakness. They maintain healthy pregnancy and tonify the kidney and spleen to build up body’s energy.
  8. These seeds are used traditionally to treat insomnia and restlessness as they are thought to have sedative and calming properties.
  9. Due to its astringent properties it helps to combat diarrhea and also helps to improve appetite.
  10. These seeds are also used in the treatment of arthritis and rheumatic pains.
  11. As they are high in fiber and low in calories so a great food for weight loss too. One can also munch on them as this will not add free calories.
  12. Lotus seeds are also very useful in anaemia. It’s been used in traditional medicine from long time to cure many ailments.
  13. It also acts as an aphrodisiac. Lotus seeds increases the quality and quantity of semen, prevents premature ejaculation, increases libido and helps in female infertility.
  14. According to ayurveda it decreases the vata and pitta doshas which are the air and fire imbalances. These imbalances can further lead to many health problems.

ipod hearing

7 Tips to Avoid iPod Hearing Loss

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Category : Health & Care

    1. Don’t Listen/hearing So Loud –

Most researchers agree that it’s safe to regularly listen to your iPod at about 70% of its maximum volume. Anything louder than that over an extended period is risky.

    1. Use Volume Control –

In response to consumer concerns, Apple offers a volume limit setting for some iPods. If your iPod support this, you’ll generally find it on the main iPod management screen that comes up when you sync. Otherwise, you can also restrict the maximum volume of a song in “options” tab of any song in iTunes.

    1. Limit Your Listening –

The length of time you listen, not just the volume, can contribute to hearing loss. The louder the music, the shorter you can listen but giving your ears a chance to rest between sessions will help them heal.

    1. Use the 60/60 Rule –

Since the combination of volume and length of exposure can cause hearing loss, researchers recommend applying the 60/60 rule: listen to an iPod for 60 minutes at 60% of max volume and then take a break. Ears that get a rest have time to recover and are less likely to be damaged.

    1. Don’t Use Earbuds –

Despite them being included with every iPod and iPhone, researchers caution against using Apple’s earbuds (or those from other manufacturers). Earbuds are more likely to cause hearing damage than headphones that sit over the ear and they can also be up to 9 db louder than overthe- ear headphones (not such a big deal when you’re going from 50 to 60 db, but much more serious going from 70 to 80).

    1. Use Noise Dampening of Cancelling Headphones –

The noise around us can contribute to cause us to change how we listen to an iPod. If there’s a lot of noise nearby, it’s likely that we’ll turn up the iPod’s volume, thus increasing the chances of hearing loss. To cut down on, or eliminate, ambient noise, use noise-deadening or –cancelling headphones. They’re more expensive, but your ears will thank you.

    1. Never Max It Out –

Though it’s easy to find yourself listening to your iPod at max volume, try to avoid this at all costs. Researchers advise that it’s safe to listen to your iPod at maximum volume for just 5 minutes.


aloe vera

Aloe Vera

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Category : Health & Care

Aloe (often called aloe vera) produces two substances, gel and latex, which are used for medicines. Aloe gel is the clear,
jelly-like substance found in the inner part of the aloe plant leaf. Aloe latex comes from just under the plant’s skin and is yellow in color. Some aloe products are made from the whole crushed leaf, so they contain both gel and latex. The aloe that is mentioned in the Bible is an unrelated fragrant wood used as incense. Information regarding aloe vera’s use dates back nearly 5,000 years to early Egyptian times. It has since been used both topically and orally. Aloe vera gel, found when you break open the green leafy skin, is often used topically to treat burns, abrasions, psoriasis, and other skin conditions. Aloe medications can be taken by mouth or applied to the skin. Aloe gel is taken by mouth for osteoarthritis, bowel diseases including ulcerative colitis, fever, itching and inflammation, and as a general tonic. It is also used for stomach ulcers, diabetes, asthma, and for treating some side effects of radiation treatment.

How does it work?
The useful parts of aloe are the gel and latex. The gel is obtained from the cells in the center of the leaf; and the latex is obtained from the cells just beneath the leaf skin. Aloe gel might cause changes in the skin that might help diseases like psoriasis. Aloe seems to be able to speed wound healing by improving blood circulation through the area and preventing cell death around a wound. It also appears that aloe gel has properties that are harmful to certain types of bacteria and fungi. Aloe latex contains chemicals that work as a laxative.

Health Benefits: 
Aloe  useful parts are the gel and latex. The gel is obtained from the cells in the center of the leaf; and the latex is obtained from the cells just beneath the leaf skin. Aloe gel might cause changes in the skin that might help diseases like psoriasis. Aloe seems to be able to speed wound healing by improving blood circulation through the area and preventing cell death around a wound. It also appears that aloe gel has properties that are harmful to certain types of bacteria and fungi. Aloe latex contains chemicals that work as a laxative.

Digestive Benefits:  
It contains nutrient compounds that help to heal and soothe the skin when used externally. It may also have similar benefits on the lining of the digestive tract, when ingested as a drink. Aloe vera juice decreases irritation and enhances healing and repair of ulcers in the stomach and intestines and also helps to decrease inflammation in irritable bowel syndrome, colitis and other inflammatory disorders of the gut. Additionally, aloe vera can increase healthy bacteria in the intestines that aid digestion.

Immune Benefits :
It Juice contains many antioxidants which fight the free radicals found in our bodies. Free radicals are unstable compounds that are a sideeffect of metabolism and contribute the process of aging as well as cause various ailments. Therefore when you drink aloe vera juice on a regular basis, your body will have the antioxidants it needs to fight these free radicals and boost your immune system. Recently, it was reported that aloe vera contains anti-bacterial, anti-viral and antifungal properties that aid the immune system to cleanse the body of toxins and invading pathogens. Additionally, aloe vera helps to balance the immune system to reduce the effects of seasonal allergies, rheumatoid arthritis and other inflammatory immune disorders.

Heart Benefits: 
Taking aloe vera internally may also help improve blood circulation in the body. A clinical study recommended that aloe vera may help decrease total fat levels in patients with high cholesterol. This helps to reduce fatty deposits and blood clots in the arteries of the heart and body. The research noted that patients with diabetes showed the highest improvement in cholesterol level; however, the exact mechanism of these benefits are not yet determined. Some research has shown that when doctors inject aloe vera extract into the blood, it drastically multiplies the diffusion abilities of red blood cells as well as the oxygen transportation. Medical studies have shown that beta (β) sitosterol can bring its high levels in your blood under control. This substance is a type of sterol with a similar chemical structure to cholesterol. It contains nutrients that can regulate blood pressure, improve blood oxidation and circulation, lower cholesterol and make blood less sticky.

Detoxification: 
Aloe vera juice can be a great natural option for detoxing. Because of the way we live including stress, pollution and junk food, we need to occasionally cleanse our systems. Aloe vera juice is an ideal way to do this because it contains many trace elements, vitamins and minerals that can help the body deal with daily stresses and strains. In addition to its natural detoxifying abilities, aloe vera juice can increase protein absorption and i m p r o v e bowel regularity. It can also reduce the quantity of unfriendly yeast and bacteria found in our gut.

Anti-inflammation: 

Inflammation can be caused by a variety of factors. There could be an injury or it could be an autoimmune response. Either way, it makes our bodies experience pain and it minimizes what we are able to do by limiting our capabilities. This juice has 12 different substances which are able to reduce and prevent inflammation, all without the risk of side-effects. It can even help with swollen, stiff or painful joints.

Healthy Skin:
The juice of  Aloe vera can help repair your collagen and elastin, giving you healthy skin. Our skin replaces itself each 28 days or so and when we have nutritional building blocks from aloe vera, our skin is able to use these nutrients each day to help fight aging. It can also help sooth minor skin irritations, scrapes, cuts and burns.

Weight Loss and Energy Regulation: 
When we drink aloe vera juice, the body can naturally cleanse its digestive system. Because our diets have many parts that can lead to exhaustion or fatigue, having aloe vera regularly can fight this. That means that aloe vera juice will give you a better feeling of well-being, help you keep a body weight that is healthy and increase energy levels.

Vitamin and Mineral Powerhouse: Every day our body needs to ingest several vitamin and minerals and aloe vera juice contains a great deal of these. It includes vitamin A, vitamin B1, vitamin B2, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, vitamin C, vitamin E, niacin and folic acid. In addition to these, it also contains chromium, magnesium, manganese, zinc, copper, potassium, iron, sodium, calcium and others.

Amino Acid Supply: Our body needs 20 different amino acids in order to build protein and it is not able to produce 8 of them itself. Because aloe vera juice contains 7 of these essential amino acids and 19 amino acids in total, it is able to easily fulfill your body’s daily needs.

Dental Health:
Juice of Aloe vera  can also help your gums and mouth. It not only provides natural anti-microbial and antibacterial actions but it also contains several vitamins and minerals that promote cell healing and growth. Because of this you will find some tooth gels that contain pure aloe vera, especially to help with mouth ulcers and bleeding gums.

Alkalization of the Body: 
Our bodies maintain a balance between acidity and alkalinity which is influenced by the foods that we take in. This juice makes your inner systems more alkaline which minimizes bad effects of the acidic stuff that we eat. Disease is not able to happen in environments that are alkaline. In general, people will consume foods that are mostly acidic but the ideal is the 80/20 rule which says you should consume 80% of alkaline forming foods and 20% of acidic ones. Because vera juice is one of the alkaline forming foods, it can help alkalize the body and balance out the acidity in our diets.

Some Special Consideration: 

During pregnancy, you should limit your consumption of aloe vera juice due to its purgative and irritant properties. It should not be consumed while breastfeeding as it can cause severe diarrhea for the baby. Aloe — either gel or latex — is POSSIBLY UNSAFE when taken by mouth. There is a report that aloe was associated with miscarriage. It could also be a risk for birth defects. Do not take aloe by mouth if you are pregnant or breast-feeding.

Children: Aloe is POSSIBLY UNSAFE for children when taken by mouth. Children younger than 12 years old may experience abdominal pain, cramps, and diarrhea.

Diabetes: Some research suggests aloe might lower blood sugar. If you take aloe by mouth and you have diabetes, monitor your blood sugar levels closely. Intestinal conditions such as Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, or

obstruction: Do not take aloe latex if you have any of these conditions. Aloe latex is a bowel irritant. Remember, products made from whole aloe leaves will contain some aloe latex.

Hemorrhoids: Do not take aloe latex if you have hemorrhoids. It could make the condition worse. Remember, products made from whole aloe leaves will contain some aloe latex.

Kidney problems: High doses of aloe latex have been linked to kidney failure and other serious conditions.

Surgery: Aloe might affect blood sugar levels and could interfere with blood sugar control during and after surgery. Stop taking aloe at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.


human health

Cholesterol and Human Health

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Category : Health & Care

Cholesterol is a commonly misunderstood part of our diets. Most people know they are supposed to avoid foods that are high in cholesterol, but many people do not know what cholesterol is. Cholesterol is a fatty substance that is found in foods, is needed in the body to insulate nerves, make cell membranes and produce certain hormones, and it is an important lipid in some membranes. However, the body makes enough cholesterol, so any dietary cholesterol isn’t needed. Cholesterol plays a major role in human heart health and high cholesterol is a leading risk factor for human cardiovascular disease such as coronary heart disease and stroke. Cholesterol can be good (high-density lipoprotein) or bad (low-density lipoprotein) to the cardiovascular system.

Good and bad cholesterol

good-vs-bad-cholesterolThere is no such thing as good and bad cholesterol, but the difference is actually in lipoproteins that carry cholesterol. Cholesterol in the blood is carried by the two main types of lipoproteins:

LDL cholesterol:
Low-density lipoproteins or LDL (low density lipoprotein), also called “bad” cholesterol, which carries cholesterol from the liver
to the tissues and arteries. The majority of cholesterol in the blood is in the form of LDL. The higher the level of LDL cholesterol in the blood, the more you are exposed to cardiovascular and coronary pathologies diseases.

HDL cholesterol:
High-density lipoproteins, or HDL (high density lipoprotein), also called “good” cholesterol, which carries cholesterol from the tissues and arteries to the liver and therefore remove cholesterol from your body. The higher the level of HDL cholesterol in the blood the better. High density of HDL cholesterol in your blood can help prevent cardiovascular and coronar y diseases (prevents the formation of deposits of cholesterol in vascular walls).

Health benefits
Most people think cholesterol is a bad thing. It is not! Cholesterol is a lipid and plays an extremely important role in the human essential-health-benefits_with_textbody. Hormones, certain vitamins and for fat metabolism necessary bile acids are produced out of cholesterol. Cholesterol is a component of all cell membranes and it is also extremely important for the functioning of the immune system. Humans and animals cannot exist without cholesterol.

Other steroid hormones produced from cholesterol include cortisol, which is involved in regulating bloodsugar levels and defending the body against infection, and aldosterone, which is important for retaining salt and water in the body. The body can even use cholesterol to make a significant amount of vitamin D, the vitamin responsible for strong bones and teeth, when the skin is exposed to sunlight.

Cholesterol is also used to make bile, a greenish fluid that is produced by the liver and stored in the gallbladder. The body needs bile to digest foods that contain fat. Bile acts as an emulsifier — it breaks down large globules of fat into smaller particles so they can mix better with the enzymes that digest fat. Once the fat is digested, bile helps the body to absorb it. The presence of bile in the intestines is required before cholesterol can be absorbed from foods. The body also needs bile in order to absorb vitamins A, D, E, and K, called fat-soluble vitamins, from food or supplements.

Cholesterol levels

Normal cholesterol level is anything below 200 mg/dl (5 mmol/l) for men and women, or below 160 mg/dl (4 mmol/l) for patients with cardiovascular disease or diabetes. Normal HDL cholesterol level is above 40 mg/dl (1,1 mmol/l) for men and above 50 mg/dl (1,3 mmol/l) for women. Normal LDL cholesterol level is below 100 mg/dl (3 mmol/l) for men and women, and below 75 mg/dl (2 mmol/l) for patients who suffer from cardiovascular disease or diabetes. Normal triglycerides level is anything below 150 mg/dl (1,7 mmol/l) for men and women.

High cholesterol
When you have too much cholesterol, it can be dangerous to your health because it causes a disease called, hyper cholesterolaemia in which excessive cholesterol starts to accumulate on the arterial walls. Hypercholesterolemia is one of A thermometer measuring the level of cholesterol in your blood to give an indicator for your risk of heart disease or strokethe most threatening factors for the rapid development of atherosclerosis. When LDL cholesterol levels are high, cholesterol is deposited on the walls of arteries and forms a hard substance called plaque. Over time, plaque causes the arteries to become narrower, decreasing blood flow and causing a condition called atherosclerosis, or hardening of the arteries.

When atherosclerosis affects the coronary arteries (the blood vessels that supply the muscles of the heart), the condition is called coronary artery disease, which puts a person at risk for having a heart attack. When atherosclerosis affects the blood vessels that supply the brain, the condition is called cerebral vascular disease, which puts a person at risk of having a stroke.

Atherosclerosis may also block blood flow to other vital organs,including the kidneys and intestines. This is why it’s so important to start paying attention to cholesterol levels as a teen — you can delay or prevent serious health problems in the future.

How Plaque Buildup Hurts?

As plaque builds up in the arteries, it will block the amount of blood flow that can get through because it narrows the five-supplements-to-lower-carteries. When this occurs near vital organs, especially the heart, it can cause serious problems and even death. When the coronary arteries, or the arteries near the heart, become narrowed by plaque buildup, it can cause a heart attack. When the arteries that take blood to the brain are blocked, it can cause a stroke. Both heart attacks and strokes can be life threatening, so monitoring your cholesterol intake and blood levels is very important.

Symptoms of high cholesterol
There are no visible or invisible symptoms of high cholesterol. A patient with high cholesterol does not feel any changes that why it is important to measure cholesterol levels frequently. What you can do is you can go to your personal doctor and ask for measurement in the laboratory. You social security should cover this. You can also buy your own cholesterol meter and do the measurements by yourself. You can also visit a self-pay lab where you can get all 4 values (total cholesterol, HDL, LDL, triglycerides) measured for little money.

Some of the factors that can lead to high cholesterol are:
Overweight:
Excess weight has been linked to high cholesterol levels.

Heredity: If cholesterol problems or heart disease run in your family, you are at a higher risk for having problems.

Diet:
Remember the saying “you are what you eat”? Avoid foods that are high in cholesterol, saturated fat, and trans fat, all of which increase cholesterol levels and your risk of developing heart disease

How to lower cholesterol?
You can lower cholesterol by following useful tips provided below.

Eating healthy food: Eat food that provides adequate nutrition. Your diet should contain as little saturated fatty acids as possible. Saturated fatty acids are mostly found in meat and meat products, full fat cheese and whole milk, margarine, fried foods and salty snacks. Replace these bad fats with good ones (unsaturated fatty acids), which are found in olives and olive oil, nuts, fish (such as salmon and mackerel) or seeds (flaxseeds).

home-remedies-for-people-with-high-and-low-cholesterolRegular physical activity: As an effective preventive measure, experts advise regular physical activity. Recent studies show that exercise reduces the level of bad cholesterol (LDL) in blood and on the other hand also contributes to higher values of good cholesterol (HDL). It is advised to exercise at least half an hour per day. If you don’t like sports, make sure you take a half hour walk every day.

Maintain healthy body weight: A very important measure to reduce cholesterol levels is to reduce excessive weight and maintain a normal body weight. Losing a few extra pounds (5 to 10% of body weight) has a positive impact not only on the concentration of fat in your blood, but also positively impacts regulation of blood pressure and blood sugar. Use this tool to calculate your ideal body weight: BMI calculator.

Say goodbye to bad habits: You should reduce excessive alcohol consumption and / or smoking. Try not to be exposed to stress or find some relaxation techniques like yoga or get yourself a hobby.

Consume dietary supplements: Many drug stores offer products that naturally reduce blood cholesterol levels. Such supplements usually contain plant sterols (ie sterols derived from vegetable oils). Fish oil is another example of dietary supplement good for lowering cholesterol because it contains a lot of omega 3 fatty acids, which are good for lowering cholesterol levels.


Drugs for lowering cholesterol

If above tips are not enough to keep your cholesterol levels within acceptable limits, you should consult your doctor who will most likely prescribe you drugs for lowering cholesterol. In general there are four groups of cholesterol lowering drugs. These are fibrates, statins, inhibitors of cholesterol absorption and ion exchangers.

Such drugs must be taken regularly and usually trough whole life, because studies show that the treatment is not successful if patient is taking drugs only for a short period of time or only occasionally. If you have been prescribed with one of the drugs for lowering cholesterol you should still follow the rules of healthy eating, be physically active and abandon bad habits.

High cholesterol foods
About two-thirds of cholesterol which is present in blood is produced by liver, the remaining cholesterol is provided by eating cholesterol rich food. Cholesterol is found in foods of animal origin: meat, ham, sausages, sausages, liver, and other meat products, egg yolks (while whites do not contain cholesterol), shrimp and dairy products like butter, cream and cheese. Try to avoid these foods if you have high cholesterol levels.

Keep in mind that the recommended intake of cholesterol with food is no more than 200 mg (0.007 oz) per day.

Foods for lowering cholesterol
Problems may arise if cholesterol levels are too high. Below you can find some healthy foods that lower cholesterol levels naturally.

Walnuts and hazelnuts:
Nuts contain a lot of unsaturated fats, vitamin E and magnesium. Nuts also contain omega-3 fatty acids, which also affect the health of blood vessels. Because this food is very rich in calories enjoy it in smaller quantities.

Garlic: Garlic has many healing effects and besides all it lowers cholesterol, blood pressure, risk of blood clots and acts as an excellent antioxidant. One clove of garlic per day is advised.

Avocado: Among all kinds of fruit the amount of fat is highest in avocados. Three-quarters of fat found in avocado is non saturated fat. Avocados contain oleic acid, which helps lowering cholesterol and is an ideal food for those who cannot consume fat of animal origin.

Blueberries: Due to its high content of antioxidants, blueberries will help lower high cholesterol.

Fish: Fish are full of omega-3 fatty acids, which lower bad cholesterol (LDL) and increase good cholesterol (HDL). Include fish meat in your diet at least twice a week. Healthiest fish are sardines, salmon, mackerel and trout. Find out more in this article: Fish meat is super food!

Flaxseed: Results of the survey, which was conducted at Iowa State University in USA have shown that a daily intake of three tablespoons of flaxseed (oil) reduces high cholesterol by 10 percent in three months. Flaxseed is a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids and also contains magnesium, manganese, iron, and vitamin E.

Olives and olive oil: Olive oil contains just the right combination of antioxidants that reduces bad cholesterol (LDL) and leaves harmless cholesterol (HDL) intact. Doctors advise to eat two tablespoons of olive oil per day.

The best method for lowering Cholesterol is eat undigestble fiber, mainly found on top of the grain (grain husk). In addition, take combination of organic food supplements with antioxidants.


Monsoon

Hair Care in Monsoon

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Category : Health & Care

Monsoon – season for super dry skins and damaged hair has arrived with excess humidity in the air. Many think that summer is the season that causes much hair damage but no rainy season has its own set of weather-induced disturbance that strip away the outermost layer of the hair strand cuticle making it brittle, rough and prone to dryness.
Is your hair falling, your scalp itchy and those lustrous locks getting sticky this monsoon? Worry not, experts have a host of suggestions, including simple homemade remedies like vinegar and methi seeds, to keep your hair healthy and sorted. Here I suggest you few tips to keep your hair safe and glossy in the monsoon – hair-care regime in the monsoon.
hair-care1
Keep your hair dry:
Do you like getting wet in the drizzle??
Ohhh… nothing can ever beat that but here is the bad news – getting wet in the rains very often is not really good for your hair.
Yes!!!! Rain water is usually acidic and dirty while the increased levels of humidity in monsoon hyper your hair woes.
In monsoons, dry your hair before you leave the house and protect your hair from damage. Traditionally, people with long hair used to dry hair using the towel i.e. after shampooing the wet hair is made to blot using the towel until it is slightly dry. Make sure you don’t comb your hair when wet.

Shampoo twice in a week:
Shampoo twice in a week to maintain a healthy scalp and take a bath when you have been walking in the rain. As rainy water left on your scalp for longer time makes you feel itchy and your hair is even susceptible to bacterial or fungal infections and may even lead to dandruff.
Washing your hair every day or too often can multiply the problems you already have with your hair.
Try not to use many hair products in particular ignore hair sprays.

Use a mild shampoo:
Apart from dandruff and hair fall you might as well have an oily scalp. So you must wash your hair regularly with a mild shampoo. Another reason to shampoo oily hair daily is because your hair may become limp during monsoons and only shampooing can restore volume to your hair. Shampoo daily if your hair is exposed to rain water every day.

Watch your Diet:
Protein is the most important nutrient for healthy hair. So, if you want to show off your mane, you must eat foods that are a rich source of protein, such as salmons, eggs, carrots,whole grains, dark green veggies, kidney beans, nuts, low-fat dairy products etc.

Conditioning regularly is vital:
The elevated levels of humidity in the air lead to hair becoming coarse and dry, which in turn makes the hair frizzy. Conditioning them regularly helps to get rid of the frizziness making it easier for you to manage.
hair-care2
Oil massage:
This is one of my favorites!! Take time off from your busy schedule and grab a hair oil of your choice and give your hair strands a natural boost of moisture that can hydrate and revitalize the driest strands in brisk temperatures. Massage the oils till the scalp absorbs some and for deep conditioning you can even put on a plastic cap and/or a hot towel.

Avoid hair styling:
Hair styling in damp monsoon weather can damage your hair.
Tying up your hair tight is not advised in monsoon as it leads to trapping of rain water in your hair and the humidity makes the hair even more frizzy and limp.
Try a loose bun, loose hair, loose side pony tail and protect your hair from humidity exposure. Keep your hair trimmed and short during the monsoons for easy cleaning and maintaining.

Buy waterproof jackets with hoodie:
Yes!!! Whenever you step out make sure you carry a water-proof jacket with a hoodie along with you even if you feel it is not going to rain. The waterproof rain coats and jackets help you stay dry. I know many would not prefer weaning one. You can also check out some colorful umbrellas to show off your dress and experience the chilly rainy weather all your way.

Monsoon hair care tips Dos:
1. Wash hair with mild shampoo.
2. Use hair mask.
3. Oil for a few hours.
4. Eat fresh fruits and raw salads.
5. Drink amla juice on empty stomach.
6. Drink plenty of water.
7. Use wide-toothed comb.

Don’ts:
1. Don’t neglect itchy scalp.
2. Don’t use strong shampoo.
3. Don’t keep oil overnight.
4. Avoid spicy and oily food.
5. Don’t tie your hair when it’s wet.
6. Do not share combs.


every woman needs

What Every Woman Needs !

Category : Health & Care

As a woman, your body is very complex. Throughout every phase of your life you will require extra care and nutritional support. Today scientific advances support a number of natural choices for women, like soy. Still, the fact remains that calcium, folic acid and iron continue to be the most important nutrients that can impact a woman’s total health. All women should take a daily multiple vitamins with these essential nutrients..nutrition

Iron is a vital nutrient that plays an essential role in forming healthy red blood cells and transporting oxygen. It’s estimated that as many as 62% of women over the age of 20 are not meeting the RDA for iron. Women also tend to be low in iron because they tend to eat foods low in iron and lose iron through menstruation.

Drinking a glass of orange juice with your cereal can boost iron absorption by the body. Vitamin C helps the body metabolize the iron. A high quality Vitamin C supplement rich in antioxidants to help fight the harmful effects of free of free radicals is a wonderful supplement not only to assist iron absorption, but also to combat ageing.


blood pressure

Diabetes, Blood Pressure & Heart Attack

Category : Health & Care

Diabetes

Diabetes (diabetes mellitus) is classed as a metabolism disorder. Metabolism refers to the way our bodies use digested food for energy and growth. Most of what we eat is broken down into glucose. Glucose is a form of sugar in the blood – it is the principal source of fuel for our bodies.

When our food is digested the glucose makes its way into our bloodstream. Our cells use the glucose for making energy diabetes-53293required for its survival and function. However, since our cells are composite units, glucose cannot enter our cells without insulin being present – insulin makes the gateway in our cells to take in the glucose.

Insulin is a hormone that is produced by the pancreas. As one eats, the pancreas automatically release an adequate quantity of insulin to move the glucose present in our blood into the cells and lowers the blood sugar level.

A person with diabetes has a condition in which the quantity of glucose in the blood is too elevated (hyperglycemia). This is because the body does not produce enough insulin/ produces no insulin or the quality of insulin is not good. As the survival of the cells depends upon the intake of glucose, the cells consider the situation as short supply of glucose and not the insulin. This message is conveyed to the brain and brain orders liver to increase the supply of glucose. In turn liver enhances the supply of glucose in the blood. This results in too much glucose building up in the blood. This excess
blood glucose eventually passes out of the body in urine. So,even though the blood has plenty of glucose, the cells are not
getting it for their essential energy requirements.

There are three main types of diabetes:

  1. Diabetes Type 1 – You produce no insulin at all.
  2. Diabetes Type 2 – You don’t produce enough insulin, or your insulin is not working properly.
  3. Gestational Diabetes – You develop diabetes just during your pregnancy.

 

Diabetes Type 1Type 1 diabetes:
The body stops producing insulin or produces too little insulin to regulate blood glucose level. Type-1 diabetes can occur in an older individual due to destruction of pancreas by alcohol, disease or removal by surgery. It is believed that type-1diabetes results from progressive failure of the pancreatic beta cells, which produce insulin. Presently, people with type-1 diabetes require daily insulin to sustain life. Type-1 Diabetes is also called Juvenile Diabetes because this condition starts in the childhood.

 

Type 2 diabetes:diabetes-mellitus-type-2
The pancreas secretes insulin, but either the quantity of insulin produced by the pancreas is less or the quality of the insulin is poor.In Type-2 diabetes, initially a patient is given tablets which force the pancreas to secret required insulin. Slowly the performance of pancreas reduce and then external insulin is introduced to a patient. The quantity of insulin keeps on increasing with time. Type 2 diabetes is usually controlled with diet, weight loss, exercise, and oral medications.


gestational-diabetes-what-is-gestational-diabetes-300x225Gestational Diabetes :

is a form of diabetes that occurs during the second half of pregnancy. Although gestational diabetes typically goes away after delivery of the baby. Women who have gestational diabetes are more likely than other women to develop type 2 diabetes later in life. Women with gestational diabetes are more likely to have large babies.

 

Complications of diabetes

Both forms of diabetes ultimately lead to high blood sugar levels, a condition called hyperglycemia. Over a long period of time, hyperglycemia damages the retina of the eye, the kidneys, the nerves, and the blood vessels.

In the short run, diabetes can contribute to a number of acute (short-lived) medical problems

Blood pressure (BP)

Blood pressure is the pressure at which the blood is circulated in the blood vessels in our body. The heart which is a muscular pump supplies the pressure to move the blood and also circulate the blood throughout the body. The blood vessel (in this case the arteries) have elastic walls and provide same resistance to flow of blood hence ,there is pressure in the system,even between heart beats. “Nature’s purpose” in keeping blood pressure at a certain level is to ensure that the blood which carries oxygen and various nutrients needed by the body is pumped from one blood vessel to another. It is the higher in the larger arteries and low in smaller arteries. It is also different at different times of the day. It
increases during physical exercises, walking, mental stress and also sexual activity, and decreases when the body is at rest during sleep.


The effects of uncontrolled high blood pressure include:

Stroke: High blood pressure is the main cause for stroke. High blood pressure can cause a break in a weakened blood vessel in the brain. This can cause bleeding in the brain, which is brain hemorrhage or stroke. Other than High BP blood clot can also result in brain hemorrhage.

Impaired vision: Blood vessels in the eye can burst due to high blood pressure. Vision can become blurred or impaired which can result in blindness. Heart attack: High blood pressure is a major risk factor for heart attacks. If the heart cannot get enough oxygen because of narrowed or hardened arteries, chest heart attack can occur.

Some common steps to reduce high blood pressure are:

  • Stop smoking.
  • Use organic food supplements to support healthy body

Some common tips to prevent low blood pressure are:

  • Dehydration reduces blood volume,which causes a drop in pressure. Hence, drink plenty of water.
  • Go for a walk after meals.this helps in bringing the blood pressure level up to normal.
  • After exercising,take some time out to cool down stoppage in the middle of an exercise routine can lead to a fall in blood pressure.
  • Salt is good for people with low blood pressure.Increase in salt consumption may vary from person to person
  • Drinking alcoholic beverages is harmful to people with a low blood pressure condition. Such individuals should drink healthy juices or non-alcoholic drinks only

Heart Attack

heart-attacks-618897A heart attack occures if the flow of oxygen-rich blood to a section of heart muscle suddenly becomes blocked. If blood flow isn’t restored quickly,this section of heart musles begin to die. Heart attacks most often occur as a result of coronary heart disease (CHD), also called coronary artery disease. CHD is a condition in which a waxy substance called plaque (plak) builds up inside the coronary arteries. These arteries supply oxygen-rich blood to your heart. When plaque builds up in the arteries, the condition is called atherosclerosis (ath-er-oskler- O-sis). The buildup of plaque occurs over many years. Eventually, an area of plaque can rupture (break open) inside of an artery. This causes a blood clot to form on the plaque’s surface.

Heart attacks can be associated with or lead to severe health problems, such as heart failure and life-threatening
arrhythmias (ah-RITH-me-ahs). Heart failure is a condition in which the heart can’t pump enough blood to meet the body’s needs. Arrhythmias are irregular heartbeats.

Heart attack symptoms include:

  • Chest Pain or discomfort. This involves uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness, or pain in the center or
    left side of the chest that can be mild or strong. This discomfort or pain often lasts more than a few minutes
    or goes away and comes back.
  • Upper body discomfort in one both arms, the back,neck, jaw, or upper part of the stomach.
  • Shortness of breath,which or before chest discomfort.
  • Nausea(feeling sick to your stomach),vomiting,lighting headedness or sudden dizziness, or breaking out in a cold sweat.

Some people (the elderly, people with diabetes, and women) may have little or no chest pain. Or, they may have unusual symptoms (shortness of breath, fatigue, weakness). A “silent heart attack” is a heart attack with no symptoms.

It is important to understand what causes heart attack.There is a fairly general trend towards encouraging regular
physical effort of a kind suited to age and condition of the person concerned. As a preventive as well as a remedial
measure exercise is of great importance along with food supplements.


old age

Old Age- Heal, Protect, Promote & Extend It”

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Category : Health & Care

Woods are lovely dark and deep
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep
And miles to go before I sleep

What is a promise?

A promise is a commitment God makes to us that comes from His mercy, love, and grace. It is not something God owes us, and it is not something we deserve or can earn. It is freely given by God and must be freely received. Since we know of God’s great power and promises to us, we step out in faith. When most of us reach rock bottom, we wait until we feel strong enough to take a step. But real faith is expressed at the time that we feel weakest and still decide to step out. We must then put into practice goodness, self-control, perseverance, godliness, brotherly kindness, and love. We?Find that each litle step builds and prepares us for the next.We find the ourselves walking the kind of life that gives God the glory and makes us grow taking small steps in faith and knowing that he has provided all the power and grace we need.

That is how our life moves. A man’s life is normally divided into five main stages namely infancy,childhood,adolescence, adulthood and old age. In each of these stages an individual has to find himself in different situations and face different problems. The old age is not without problems. In old age physical strength deteriorates, mental stability diminishes; money power becomes bleak coupled with negligence from the younger generation.

Problems Due To The Ageing Process-

No one knows when old age begins. The “biological age” of a person is not identical with his “chronological age”. Nobody grows old merely by living a certain number of years. Years may wrinkle the skin, but worry, doubt, fear, anxiety, tension, and self-distrust wrinkle the soul. With the passage of time, certain changes take place in an organism. The following disabilities are considered as incident to it:

  1. Senile cataract
  2. Glaucoma
  3. Nerve deafness
  4. Osteoporosis affecting mobility
  5. Failure of special senses
  6. Bronchitis
  7. Alzheimer’s disease
  8. Rheumatism etc.

Problems Associated With Long-Term Illness-

Certain chronic diseases are more frequent among the older people than in the younger people.
These are:

  1. Degenerative Diseases of Heart and Blood vessels
  2. Cancer
  3. Diabetes
  4. Diseases of Locomotor System
  5. Genitourinary System

Suggestions to remain healthy

To remain healthy in old age, control your weight, blood pressure and diabetes, eat four to six portions of fruit or vegetables daily, do not smoke, avoid salt, drink alcohol in moderation, walk daily, maintain muscle strength and flexibility with exercise and sleep for six or seven hours a night . Adopting healthful habits can significantly alter the course of aging and prevent common diseases. Here are some suggestions to remain healthy in old age :

Go Green :-

Sticking to a vegetarian diet can help Kidney disease patients avoid accumulating toxic levels of phosphorous in their bodies. Regular use of some medicinal plants are very helpful in old age.

Tulsi:

Tulsi (Holy Basil) has a positive effect over Blood Pressure and also a de-toxicant, its regular use prevents Heart Disease.

Amala:

A Medicinal Plant throughout the winter months ia very important and keeps health intact.

Ashwagandha-

A Medicinal Plant is the best rejuvenate in old age that helps maintain proper nourishment of the tissues, particularly muscle and bones, while supporting the proper function of the adrenals and reproductive system.

Tomatoes:

Tomatoes can save you from high cholesterol: Tomatoes may be an effective alternative to drugs in lowering cholesterol and BP and in preventing heart disease.

Drink enough water:

It cleanses your body machinery and helps your heart in functioning well. Drinking of enough water will keep away chances of kidney stone and urine problem. It will also keep you looking young and active along with natural glow on your face.

Exercise regularly:

Exercise and physical activity may stop you from looking and feeling old, it may even help you live longer. Whether you’re 30, 60 or 90, endurance enables you to do what you want to do. A study by Mc Master University researchers has shown that there is no substitute for exercise when it comes to keeping old age at bay. Research from Tel Aviv University has found that endurance exercises like a jog or spinning class can make us look younger. Exercise unlocks the stem cells of our muscles. These exercises increase the number of muscle stem cells and enhance their ability to rejuvenate old muscles. Endurance exercises also improve the levels of ‘spontaneous locomotion’ — the feeling that tells our bodies to just get up and dance. Ageing is typically associated with a reduced level of spontaneous locomotion. Exercise your brain by participating in mentally stimulating activities such as reading, writing, doing puzzles and play to learn the Chess Game.

Take balanced diet:

Well balanced diet plays a very important part in keeping you healthy in old age. Avoid taking rich food like sweets, high stuffed and fried. You should add calcium rich diet as it will strengthen your bones. Add fruits, vegetables and greens in your daily diet to maintain your health in old age.

Be happy and engage in recreational activities:

During old age, Factors like social isolation, low income and depression affect health in old age. Loneliness is a common problem in old age and leads to related problems. During this time, it becomes all the more important for seniors to take on some activity which occupy their time.

Go for regular checkups:-

Keep your eyes and ears fit by regular checkup.Vision and hearing test by specialists should be a regular part of your anti-aging plan. Sight-threatening diseases that are more common with age, including cataracts, glaucoma and macular degeneration, can be controlled or halted if caught early. Hearing loss, the third most common chronic condition can contribute to cognitive decline, depression and social isolation, To reduce your risk of eye disease, avoid tobacco smoke, wear sunglasses, maintain a healthy weight and control high blood pressure and blood sugar levels. To reduce the risk of hearing loss, consider using earplugs in noisy places. Always contact with your doctor to keep blood pressure, blood sugar and cholesterol levels under control even as you get into your 70s and beyond.

Walking Helps Us Preserve Memory:

A recent research discovered that a simple walk every other day can help elderly people keep their memory fresh longer.40 minutes are enough to boost up the memory level and you can also enjoy yourself during this walk. It is an easy and most pleasant solution for those aiming to preserve their memory for a longer period of time

Think young:

Shed off your years by thinking younger–people who maintain a young, fresh outlook towards life are better equipped to handle the trials of one’s elder years. Stop troubling yourself with your growing
age, instead, move on with everything that comes with the soothing lifestyle of old age.


Allergy

Allergy

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Category : Health & Care

An allergy refers to an exaggerated reaction by our immune system in response to bodily contact with certain foreign substances. It is exaggerated because these foreign substances are usually seen by the body as harmless and no response occurs in non- allergic people. Allergic people’s bodies recognize the foreign substance and one part of the immune system is turned on. Allergy-producing substances are called “allergens.” Examples of allergens include pollens, dust mite, molds, danders, and foods. To understand the language of allergy it is important to remember that allergens are substances that are foreign to the body and can cause an allergic reaction in certain people. When an allergen comes in contact with the body, it causes the immune system to develop an allergic reaction in persons who are allergic to it. When you inappropriately react to allergens that are normally harmless to other people, you are having an allergic reaction and can be referred to as allergic or atopic. Therefore, people who are prone to allergies are said to be allergic or “atopic.”

alergy
Figure 1.Showing hives, a common allergic symptom.

Allergy Fact

  • It is estimated that 50 million North Americans are affected by allergic conditions.
  • The cost of allergies in the united states is more than $10 billion dollars yearly.
  • Allergic rhinitis (nasal allergies) affects about 35 million Americans, 6 million of whom are children.
  • Asthma affects 15 million Americans, 5 million of whom are children.
  • The number of asthma has doubled over the last 20 years.

Whats causes allergies?
wombThe immune system is the body’s organized defense mechanism against foreign invaders, particularly infections. Its job is to recognize and react to these foreign substances, which are called antigens. Antigens are substances that are capable of causing the production of antibodies. Antigens may or may not lead to an allergic reaction. Allergens are certain antigens that cause an allergic reaction and the production of IgE.

The aim of the immune system is to mobilize its forces at the site of invasion and destroy the enemy. One of the ways it does this is to create protective proteins called antibodies that are specifically targeted against particular foreign substances. These antibodies, or immunoglobulins (IgG, IgM, IgA, IgD), are protective and help destroy a foreign particle by attaching to its surface, thereby making it easier for other immune cells to destroy it. The allergic person however, develops a specific type of antibody called immunoglobulin E, or IgE, in response to certain normally harmless foreign substances, such as cat dander. To summarize, immunoglobulins are a group of protein molecules that act as antibodies. There are five different types; IgA, IgM, IgG, IgD, and IgE. IgE is the allergy antibody.

Who is at risk and why?
Allergies can develop at any age, possibly even in the womb. They commonly occur in children but may give rise to symptoms for the first time in adulthood. Asthma may persist in adults while nasal allergies tend to decline in old age. You may inherit the tendency to develop allergies, you may never actually have symptoms. It is clear that you must have a genetic tendency and be exposed to an allergen in order to develop an allergy. Additionally, the more intense and repetitive the exposure to an allergen and the earlier in life it occurs, the more likely it is that an allergy will develop.

What are common allergic conditions, and what are allergy symptoms and signs?
The parts of the body that are prone to react to allergies include the eyes, nose, lungs, skin, and stomach. Although the various allergic diseases may appear different, they all result from an exaggerated immune response to foreign substances in sensitive people. The following brief descriptions will serve as an overview of common allergic disorders

Allergic Rhinitis
Allergic rhinitis (“hay fever”) is the most common of the allergic diseases and refers to seasonal nasal symptoms that are due to pollens. Year round or perennial allergic rhinitis is usually due to indoor allergens, such as dust mites, animal dander, or molds. It can also be caused by pollens. Symptoms result from the inflammation of the tissues that line the inside of the nose (mucus lining or membranes) after allergens are inhaled. Adjacent areas, such as the ears, sinuses, and throat can also be involved. The most common symptoms include: Runny nose, Stuffy nose, Sneezing, Nasal itching (rubbing), Itchy ears and throat, Post nasal drip (throat clearing).

In 1819, an English physician, John Bostock, first described hay fever by detailing his own seasonal nasal symptoms, which he called “summer catarrh.” The condition was called hay fever because it was thought to be caused by “new hay.”

Asthma 455012551
Asthma is a breathing problem that results from the inflammation and spasm of the lung’s air passages (bronchial tubes). The inflammation causes a narrowing of the air passages, which limits the flow of air into and out of the lungs. Asthma is most often, but not always, related to allergies. Common symptoms include: Shortness of breath, Wheezing, Coughing, Chest tightness.

Allergic Eyes
Allergic eyes (allergic conjunctivitis) is inflammation of the tissue layers (membranes) that cover the surface of the eyeball and the undersurface of the eyelid. The inflammation occurs as a result of an allergic reaction and may produce the following symptoms: Redness under the lids and of the eye overall, Watery, itchy eyes, Swelling of the membranes.

9252684A-B789-A08C-83FB377964FBA8FFAllergic Eczema
Allergic eczema (atopic dermatitis) is an allergic rash that is usually not caused by skin contact with an allergen. This condition is commonly associated with allergic rhinitis or asthma and features the following symptoms: Itching, redness, and or dryness of the skin, Rash on the face, especially children, Rash around the eyes, in the elbow creases, and behind the knees, especially in older children and adults.

Hives
hivesHives (urticaria) are skin reactions that appear as itchy swellings and can occur on any part of the body. Hives can be caused by an allergic reaction, such as to a food or medication, but they also may occur in non-allergic people. Typical hive symptoms are: Raised red welts, Intense itching

Allergic Shock
Allergic shock (anaphylaxis or anaphylactic shock) is a lifethreatening allergic reaction that can affect a number of organs at the same time. This response typically occurs when the allergen is eaten (for example, foods) or injected (for example, a bee sting). Some or all of the following symptoms may occur: Hives or reddish discoloration of the skin, Nasal congestion, Swelling of the throat, Stomach pain, nausea, vomiting, Shortness of breath, wheezing, Low blood pressure or shock.

Prevention of Allergic Reactions
Most people learn to recognize their allergy triggers; they also learn how to avoid them. An allergy specialist (allergist) may be able to help you identify your triggers. Several different types of allergy tests are used to identify triggers. Skin testing is the most widely used and the most helpful. There are several different methods, but all involve exposing the skin to small amounts of various substances and observing the reactions over time. Blood tests (RAST) generally identify IgE antibodies to specific antigens. Other tests involve eliminating certain allergens from your environment and then reintroducing them to see if a reaction occurs.

Allergic Reaction Diagnosis
For typical allergic reactions, your health-care provider will examine you and ask questions about your symptoms and their timing. Blood tests and X-rays are not needed except under unusual circumstances. In case of severe reactions, you will be evaluated quickly in the emergency department in order to make a diagnosis. The first step for the health-care provider is to judge the severity of the allergic reaction.

  • Blood Pressure and pulse and Checked.
  • An examination determines whether you need help breathing.

Skin Test
Skin testing is also known as “puncture testing” and “prick testing” due to the series of tiny puncture or pricks made into the patient’s skin. Small amounts of suspected allergens and/or their extracts (pollen, grass, mite proteins, peanut extract, etc.) are introduced to sites on the skin marked with pen or dye (the ink/dye should be carefully selected, lest it cause an allergic response itself ). A small plastic or metal device is used to puncture or prick the skin.


Muscular Dystrophy

Muscular dystrophy is a group of disorders recognized by progressive muscle weakness and loss of muscle tissue. This disease weakens the muscles that move the human body. Muscular dystrophies are characterized by progressive skeletal muscle weakness, defects in muscle proteins, and the death of muscle cells and ti ssue. Nine diseases including Duchenne, Becker, limb girdle, congenital, facioscapulohumeral, myotonic, oculopharyngeal, distal, and Emery-Dreifuss have always been classified as muscular dystrophy but there are more than 100 diseases in total with similarities to muscular dystrophy. Most types of muscular dystrophy result in multi -system disorders including the heart, gastrointestinal and nervous systems, endocrine glands, skin, eyes and other organs, mainly the brain. The condition may also lead to mood swings and learning difficulties.

Symptoms
Symptoms vary with the different types of muscular dystrophy. Certain types, such as Duchnne dystrophy is ultimately fatal while other types have associated muscle weakness but cause little disability. Some types of muscular dystrophy can affect the heart, causing cardiomyopathy or arrhythmias. It is likely that few or one of these symptoms may be present before diagnosis-

  • Intellectual retardati on – only present in some types of Muscular Dystrophy
  • Hypotonia
  • Skeletal deformiti es
  • Muscle weakness
  • Progressive
  • Frequent falls
  • Delayed development of muscle skills
  • Problems walking
  • Difficulty using a muscle group (specific muscle depends on the type of MD)
  • Eyelid drooping/li>
  • Drooling
  • Muscle deformities
  • Contracture deformiti es (clubfoot, lawhand or others)
  • Scoliosis
  • Enlargement of the calve muscles (pseudohypertrophy)

Cause
The exact causes of this disease are still unknown. It is believed that these conditions are inherited and the different types of muscular dystrophies follow different inheritance patterns. If it is to be believed that it is inherited then, the symptoms of the disease should be prevalent from the birth itself, because the cellular division/multiplication is in accordance with the DNA mapping of each cell. This disease is also known as neuro muscular disorder. The disease is mainly due to the dysfunction of the neurological system associated with muscle tissue. It appears that the muscular dystrophy is purely a nervous dysfunction, where in the energy consumption of the muscle tissue/cells is higher than the energy produced by the muscle/cell. The enhanced energy consumption is mainly due to the changes in the functional signal being sent to the muscles/cells from the brain.

Diagnosis
The diagnosis of muscular dystrophy is based on the results of a muscle biopsy and increased Creatine
Phosphokinase (CpK3). In some cases, a DNA (blood) test may be all that is needed.

Diagnosis is also made through an EMG (Electromyogram)- a test in which the electrical activity in muscle is analyzed aft er being amplified, displayed, and recorded. A physical examination and the patient’s medical history helps the doctor to determine the type of muscular dystrophy. Specific muscle groups are affected by different types of muscular dystrophy. Oft en, there is a loss of muscle mass (wasting), which may be hard to see because some types of muscular dystrophy cause a build up of fat and connective tissue that makes the muscle appear larger. This is called pseudo-hypertrophy.

Treatment
Presently there is no known cure for muscular dystrophy. Inactivity (such as bed rest and even sitting for long periods) can worsen the disease. Physical therapy, occupational therapy, orthotic intervention (e.g., anklefoot orthosis), speech therapy and orthopedic instruments (e.g. wheelchairs and standing frames) may be helpful.

There is no specific treatment for any of the forms of muscular dystrophy. Physical therapy to prevent contractures and maintain muscle tone, orthoses (orthopedic appliances used for support) and corrective orthopedic surgery may be needed to improve the quality of life in some cases. The cardiac problems that occur with Emery-Dreifuss muscular dystrophy and myotonic muscular dystrophy may require a pacemaker.

Occupational therapy assists the individual with MD in engaging in his/her activities of daily living (self-feeding, self-care activities, etc.) and leisure activities at the most independent level possible. This may be achieved with use of adaptive equipment or the use of energy conservation techniques. Occupational therapy may implement changes to a person’s environment, both at home or work, to increase the individual’s function and accessibility. Occupational therapists also address psychosocial changes and cognitive decline which may accompany MD, as well as provide support and education about the disease to the family and individual.


In the prevailing situation where no cure/treatment exists for MD, the Nutritional therapy has given a ray of hope to two individuals if not many. The detail of one of the case is elaborated in the succeeding paragraphs and the second case will follow in succeeding issues of this magazine. The Nutritional therapy has been designed in a manner to resolve the neurological dysfunction so as to provide the corrected signal as well as to ensure availability of additional nutritional ingredients to the muscle tissue/cells so as to generate higher energy in order to meet the existing demand and ensure proper upkeep and maintenance.

The Nutritional therapy works in three phases –

  1. First Phase – To check/arrest further development/ growth of the disease.
  2. Second Phase – Recovery Phase
  3. Third Phase – Maintenance Phase

It has been observed that the time required for the first phase may be anywhere from a week to a year. The second phase may take one to two years and the third phase is life long. The time period in each phase mainly depends upon the period a person has been suffering with the disease and the intensity of the disease.

The prognosis for people with muscular dystrophy varies according to the type and progression of the disorder. Some cases may be mild and progress very slowly over a normal lifespan, while others produce severe muscle weakness, functional disability, and loss of the ability to walk. Some children with muscular dystrophy die in infancy while others live into adulthood with only moderate disability. The muscles affected vary, but can be around the pelvis, shoulder, face or elsewhere. Muscular dystrophy can affect adults, but the more severe forms tend to occur in early childhood.


DIABETES

Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a remarkable and challenging disorder. Its diversity of clinical features is matched by the complexity of the factors (genetic, hormonal, and environmental) that cause it, and the array of autoantibodies with which it is associated. SLE is said to be an autoimmune disease is an autoimmune disease in which the body’s immune system mistakenly attacks healthy tissue. It is also said that an autoimmune disease occurs when the immune system attacks its own body because it confuses it for something foreign. It can affect the skin, joints, kidneys, brain, and other organs. SLE is much more common in women than men. It may occur at any age, but appears most often in people between the ages of 10 and 50. African Americans and Asians are affected more often than people from other races.

Causes
The exact cause of SLE is not known, but several factors have been associated with the disease. The disease is not linked to a certain gene, but people with lupus often have family members with other autoimmune conditions. The immune system is a complex system within the body that is designed to fight infectious agents, such as bacteria and other foreign microbes. One of the ways that the immune system fights infections is by producing antibodies that bind to the microbes. People with lupus produce abnormal antibodies in their blood that target tissues within their own body rather than foreign infectious agents. These confused antibodies are referred to as autoantibodie.

Because the antibodies and accompanying cells of inflammation can affect tissues anywhere in the body, lupus has the potential to affect a variety of areas. Sometimes lupus can cause disease of the skin, heart, lungs, kidneys, joints, and/or nervous system. When only the skin is involved by rash, the condition is called lupus dermatitis or cutaneous lupus erythematosus. A form of lupus dermatitis that can be isolated to the skin, without internal disease, is called discoid lupus. When internal organs are involved, the condition is referred to as SLE.

Genetic factors may increase the tendency of developing autoimmune diseases, and autoimmune diseases such as lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, and autoimmune thyroid disorders are more common among relatives of people with lupus than the general population. Moreover, it is possible to have more than one autoimmune disease in the same individual. Therefore, “overlap” syndromes of lupus and rheumatoid arthritis, or lupus and scleroderma, etc., can occur. Some scientists believe that the immune system in lupus is more easily stimulated by external factors like viruses or ultraviolet light. Sometimes, symptoms of lupus can be precipitated or aggravated by only a brief period of sun exposure.

There may be environmental triggers like ultraviolet rays, certain medications, a virus, physical or emotional stress, and trauma. SLE affects more women than men. Women also experience worsening of symptoms during pregnancy and with their menstrual periods. Both of these observations have led some medical professionals to believe that the female hormone estrogen may play a role in causing SLE. However, more research is still needed to prove this theory.

Signs and symptoms
People with SLE can develop different combinations of symptoms and organ involvement. Common complaints and symptoms include fatigue, low-grade fever, loss of appetite, muscle aches, hair loss (alopecia), arthritis, ulcers of the mouth and nose, facial rash (“butterfly rash”), unusual sensitivity to sunlight (photosensitivity), inflammation of the lining that surrounds the lungs (pleuritis) and the heart (pericarditis), and poor circulation to the fingers and toes with cold exposure (Raynaud’s phenomenon). Complications of organ involvement can lead to further symptoms that depend on the organ affected and severity of the disease. In childhood-onset SLE, there are several clinical symptoms more commonly found than in adults, including malar rash, ulcers/mucocutaneous involvement, renal involvement, proteinuria, urinary cellular casts, seizures, thrombocytopenia, hemolytic anemia, fever, and lymphadenopathy.

The classic presentation of a triad of fever, joint pain, and rash in a woman of childbearing age should prompt investigation into the diagnosis of SLE. Patients may present with any of the following manifestations:

  • Constitutional (eg, fatigue, fever, arthralgia, weight changes)
  • Musculoskeletal (eg, arthralgia, arthropathy, myalgia, frank arthritis, avascular necrosis)
  • Dermatologic (eg, malar rash, photosensitivity, discoid lupus)
  • Renal (eg, acute or chronic renal failure, acute nephritic disease)
  • Neuropsychiatric (eg, seizure, psychosis)
  • Pulmonary (eg, pleurisy, pleural effusion, pneumonitis, pulmonary hypertension, interstitial lung disease)
  • Gastrointestinal (eg , nausea, dyspepsia, abdominal pain)
  • Cardiac(eg,pericarditis, myocarditis)
  • Hematologic (eg, cytopenias such as leukopenia, lymphopenia, anemia, or thrombocytopenia)

In patients with suggestive clinical findings, a family history of autoimmune disease should raise further suspicion of SLE.
Diagnostic
The diagnosis of SLE is based on a combination of clinical findings and laboratory evidence. Familiarity with the diagnostic criteria helps clinicians to recognize SLE and to sub-classify this complex disease based on the pattern of target-organ manifestations.

SLE diagnostic criteria
Since individuals with SLE can have a wide variety of symptoms and different combinations of organ involvement, no single test establishes the diagnosis of systemic lupus

The following are 11 criteria used for diagnosing SLE:

    1. Malar (over the cheeks of the face) “butterfly” rash
    2. Discoid skin rash (patchy redness with hyperpigmentation and hypopigmentation that can cause scarring)
    3. Photosensitivity (skin rash in reaction to sunlight [ultraviolet light] exposure)
    4. Mucous membrane ulcers(spontaneous sores or ulcers of the lining of the mouth, nose, or throat)
    5. Arthritis (two or more swollen, tender joints of the extremities)
    6. Pleuritis or pericarditis (inflammation of the lining tissue around the heart or lungs, usually associated with chest pain upon breathing or changes of body position)
    7. Kidney abnormalities (abnormal amounts of urine protein or clumps of cellular elements called casts detectable with a urinalysis) Note: Ultimately, in patients with kidney disease from systemic lupus erythematosus (lupus nephritis), a kidney biopsy may be necessary to both define the cause of the kidney disease as being lupus-related as well as to determine the stage of the kidney disease in order to optimally guide treatments. Kidney biopsies are often performed by fine-needle aspiration of the kidney under radiology guidance, but in certain circumstances, a kidney biopsy can be done during an open abdominal operation.
    8. Brain irritation (manifested by seizures [convulsions] and/or psychosis, referred to as “lupus cerebritis”)
    9. Blood-count abnormalities: low white blood count (WBC) or red blood count (RBC), or platelet count on routine complete blood count testing
    10. Immunologic disorder (abnormal immune tests include anti-DNA or anti-Sm [Smith] antibodies, falsely positive blood test for syphilis, anticardiolipin antibodies, lupus anticoagulant, or positive LE prep test)
    11. Antinuclear antibody (positive ANA antibody testing [antinuclear antibodies in the blood])

Testing
The following are useful standard laboratory studies when SLE is suspected:

  • CBC with differential
  • Serum creatinine
  • Urinalysis with microscopy

Other laboratory tests that maybe used in the diagnosis of SLE are as follows:

  • ESR or CRP results
  • Complement levels
  • Liver function tests
  • Creatine kinase assay
  • Spot protein/spot creatinine ratio
  • Autoantibody tests

Treatment for SLE
Treatment for SLE is not curative— the goal is to ease the symptoms of lupus. Treatment can vary depending on how severe your symptoms are and which parts of your body are affected, treatment can vary. Dozens of medications have been reported to trigger SLE. However, more than 90% of cases of “drug-induced lupus” occurs as a side effect of one of the following six drugs: hydralazine (Apresoline) is used for high blood pressure; quinidine (Quinidine Gluconate, Quinidine Sulfate) and procainamide (Pronestyl; Procan-SR; Procanbid) are used for abnormal heart rhythms; phenytoin (Dilantin) is used for epilepsy; isoniazid (Nydrazid, Laniazid) is used for tuberculosis; and d-penicillamine (used for rheumatoid arthritis). These drugs are known to sometimes stimulate the immune system and cause SLE.

Fortunately, drug-induced SLE is infrequent (accounting for less than 5% of all people with SLE) and it usually resolves when the medications are discontinued. Treatments may include:

  • anti-inflammatory medications for joint pain and stiffness
  • steroid creams for rashes
  • corticosteroids of varying doses to minimize the immune response
  • antimalarial drugs for skin and joint problems

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are helpful in reducing inflammation and pain in muscles, joints, and other tissues. Examples of NSAIDs include aspirin, ibuprofen (Motrin), naproxen (Naprosyn), and sulindac (Clinoril). Since the individual response to NSAIDs varies, it is common for a doctor to try different NSAIDs to find the most effective one with the fewest side effects. The most common side effects are stomach upset, abdominal pain, ulcers, and even ulcer bleeding. NSAIDs are usually taken with food to reduce side effects. Sometimes, medications that prevent ulcers while taking NSAIDs, such as misoprostol (Cytotec), are given simultaneously.

Talk with your doctor about your diet and lifestyle habits. Your doctor might recommend eating or avoiding certain foods and minimizing stress to reduce the likelihood of triggering symptoms. You might need to have screenings for osteoporosis, since steroids can thin your bones. Preventative care such as immunizations and cardiac screenings may also be recommended