Heard the word cholesterol before? Everybody might have heard about it..but,what does it exactly mean? Cholesterol is both , a good and a bad thing. It is essential substance for the human body but an excess of it can be fatal. Basically,cholesterol is a waxy,fat-like substance in ones cells which helps in the making of hormones, vitamin D and other substances which help us digest food. However, an excess of this cholesterol can make a person sick and could lead a person towards dangerous conditions. Hypercholesterolemia is a condition in which a person has very high levels of cholesterol in the blood. Cholesterol travels through the blood and is attached to proteins. The combination of proteins and cholesterol is called lipoproteins. There are two types of lipoproteins that carry cholesterol in a body. They are; Low density liproprotein (˘LDL), LDL or bad cholesterol makes up most of your body’s cholesterol. LDL cholesterol builds up in the walls of a person’s arteries , which narrows and hardens them. High levels of LDL cholesterol raise the risk of heart diseases. High density lipoprotein (HDL), HDL or good cholesterol’s main function is to carry the cholesterol to the liver after absorbing it and then flushing it out from the body. When there is an excess of LDL cholesterol in one’s body , it can build up on the walls of the blood vessels. This is called plaque. As soon as plaque starts increasing,the insides of the blood vessels narrow out. Due to this narrowing, the blood to and from the heart and other organs is reduced drastically. As soon as the blood flow to the heart is blocked, it can cause angina (chest pain) or a dangerous heart attack. CAUSES OF HIGH CHOLESTEROL- Eating too much food rich in cholesterol,saturated and trans fats. Inactivity and smoking. Genetics. Familial hypercholesterolemia. Diabetes and hyperthyroidism may increase the risk of developing hypercholesterolemia. Lowering bad cholesterol and preventing clogging of arteries by using turmeric in hypercholesterolemia is an upcoming field of research. Though much has been done, there is a lot more of investigation and trials to be done. We have seen most of the experiments regarding turmeric and high cholesterol have been done on animals.
High blood pressure is the most prevalent chronic or lifestyle disease in India which is increasing rapidly among the urban and rural population..Quantification of the absolute burden and awareness about hypertension in India is critical as it is the leading modifiable risk factor for cardiovascular morbidity and mortality. Overall prevalence of HTN in India is approximately 30%. One third of urban adult Indians and close to one fourth of rural adult Indians are hypertensive. Among the general public , only one in fourth in the rural population are even aware that they have hypertension. Hypertension and diabetes are major silent killer diseases,which by and large affect all the major organs of our body. The low awareness and treatment levels among hypertensive patients signify a lower knowledge ,attitude,and practice level. Current strategies to control blood pressure do not seem to be working too well. Hypertension is adequately controlled in barely 20% of the population undergoing treatment. In view of the dismal status, urgent steps to improve health education and health promotion measures have to be made by the policy makers on a large scale, incorporating multicomponent and multilevel approaches for better managing BP among Indians. Most people with high blood pressure have no signs or symptoms, even if blood pressure readings reach dangerously high levels. People suffering from hypertension may have headaches,giddiness,shortness of breath or bleeding from the nose,but these symptoms aren’t always present and usually don’t occur until the blood pressure has reached a severe or life threatening stage. UNCONTROLLED HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE CAN LEAD TO COMPLICATIONS IN THE SHORT AND LONG TERM; Heart attack Heart failure Stroke Kidney failure Decreased ability to think,remember and learn Dementia RISK FACTORS OR INCREASED BLOOD PRESSURE IN INDIA ARE MAINLY; Smoking ,consumption of khaini or tobacco Sedentary habits Extra salt intake Low intake of dietary fruits and vegetables Stress Lifestyle intervention strategies,such as abstaining from tobacco,sodium reduction and weight loss,could aid int primary prevention of hypertension in our population.
Our body is constantly subjected to the environment around us..at any given point of time, we are inhaling ,swallowing and being infiltrated by micro-organisms through skin and mucous membrane ((tissue lining our gut and respiratory passages.) whether these microbes (referred to as ‘germs’ in common parlance) result in our falling sick or not,is dependent upon our body’s defense mechanism or immune system. The immune system is a complex and interactive network of our organs,cells and proteins that jointly create a defensive shield to protect our body from viruses,bacteria and any other external substances. It works continuously to kill and remove various pathogens (bacteria,virus,parasites or fungi) that manage to enter our body. The system also works to replace the body cells impacted by an illness,injury or infection. It is only when the immune system is breached that we experience bad health and illnesses. At times, it might under-perform and result in extreme infections and tumorous,etc. At the same time, an overly active immune system can cause allergies and autoimmunity diseases. The most incredible thing about our body’s immune system is its constant agility, self-evolution and awareness of the fight against bacteria or viruses that keep modifying themselves with the passage of time. There is a two-layered protection in place; INNATE IMMUNE SYSTEM- It works as a general defense against all threats posed by pathogens. ADAPTIVE IMMUNE SYSTEM- It identifies and attacks specific pathogens that the body has been previously exposed to. Both these aspects of the immune system work well in tandem and also react in the scenario of a pathogen or a harmful substance impacting the body.
Taking a dip in the swimming pool in summer is both,a matter of enjoyment as well as a source of respite from the heat.swimming as a recreational activity can be fun but there are some do’s and dont’s to keep it safe too. DO’S- WEAR GOGGLES WHILE SWIMMING- Swimming pools are usually treated with chlorine to reduce the chances of infection. This chlorine has a tendency to wash away the protective film of tears from our eyes,resulting in irritation,redness and watering of eyes. Additionally,chlorine by itself may be a source of irritation to the eyes. Moreover, despite chlorination,some bacteria may still persist in the pool which may harm the eyes by causing conjunctivitis. So it is advisable that kids wear goggles which cover the eyes completely,to physically protect their eyes in the pool. WASH YOUR EYES-Kids are advised to wash their eyes properly after getting out of the pool. This is to ensure that any chemical adherent to the eye will be washed out. Additionally,it also helps in soothing the eyes which may be irritated because of the loss of the tear film. USE SUN GLASSES AT THE POOL SIDE- A pair of sunglasses of good quality , which give protection from both UV a and UV b rays, and cover the eyes from all the sides is advisable while relaxing by the pool side. STAY HYDRATED- It is advisable to drink adequate amounts of fluids to counteract the dehydrating effect of summer as well as to reduce the chances of dry eyes in children who swim regularly. Fluids can include plain simple water,coconut water,buttermilk and fruit juices. Carbonated drinks are best avoided. DONT’S- AVOID CONTACT LENSES- Contact lenses must be removed and a glass of suitable power be used while swimming..swimming with contact lenses damages the lens. It also causes infected organisms to adhere to the lens or to the cornea which can result in severe irritation and even a serious infection of the cornea called infected keratitis. EWW adhering to the above set of instructions will make swimming both safe and enjoyable. So,just go ahead and take the plunge into the pool.
EVRYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT HOW TO UN-DIET YOURSELF SUCCESSFULLY- Intermittent fasting needs no introduction. And if you are goggling this right now,then you,have been living under a rock. There has been constant chatter about fasting and its numerous health benefits,with its biggest side effect,weight loss,getting the maximum spotlight. The problem though sometimes,with so much information is that you don’t know where to begin. WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO FAST- Fasting isn’t just another wellness fad. There is a deep-rooted science to it,and the mechanism of fasting is intrinsically human. Its how our ancestors ate when they were hunters and gatherers. They survived long periods of time without food until they hunted again.in the modern world,intermittent fasting implies going through anywhere from 14 to 16^hours to longer without food ,everyday. It also stresses on the importance of eating fewer meals during the eating window and not consuming any snacks. WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO THE BODY WHEN YOU FAST? I cannot even begin to tell you about how good you will feel once you begin fasting regularly. If you’re doing this for weight loss,intermittent fasting will first make you healthy and then you will start losing the weight. So give it time and adopt this as a lifestyle. The best part about the weight loss is that you burn your body’s fat stores and not your muscle mass.it is the healthiest and most efficient way to lose weight by far. WHAT TO EAT DURING THE EATING WINDOW? Many doctors and nutritionists will suggest practicing a normal diet. However,for someone, who is addicted to food and eating all the time,will find easier to restrict their carbs intake and follow either a ketogenic or a low carb diet. Carbs make you sluggish and will have you craving food during your fasting window which wont allow you to fast successfully. Eat plenty of low carb vegetables like cauliflower and broccoli,dark leafy greens like kale and healthy fats like avocado and nuts. WHAT TO EAT OR DRINK DURING THE HOURS OF FASTING? We all started our day with a cup of English tea that’s brewed a beautiful hue of brown and with a spot of milk to make it well rounded. After that,a cup of black coffee,and then started a gym or yoga. Around mid-morning,one must have the ginger-lemon-turmeric shot which helps support the digestion. And the most important thing is that during the fast ,one should have a glass or two of fresh lemonade,to which ,add a pinch of Himalayan salt. This keeps the electrolytes in balance. No form of sugars or fruits or anything with calories must be consumed during the fasting hours. The last piece of advice is that ,’start slow and gradually work your way up.”