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Showing posts with label HEALTH & ENVIRONMENT. Show all posts
Showing posts with label HEALTH & ENVIRONMENT. Show all posts

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Donald trump warns about #HurricaneFlorence


Hurricanes are massive storm systems that form over warm ocean waters and move toward land. Potential threats from hurricanes include powerful winds, heavy rainfall, storm surges, coastal and inland flooding, rip currents, tornadoes, and landslides. The Atlantic hurricane season runs from June 1 to November 30. The Pacific hurricane season runs May 15 to November 30. Hurricanes:
  • Can happen along any U.S. coast or in any territory in the Atlantic or Pacific oceans.
  • Can affect areas more than 100 miles inland.
  • Are most active in September.


  • Determine how best to protect yourself from high winds and flooding.
    • Evacuate if told to do so.
    • Take refuge in a designated storm shelter, or an interior room for high winds.
  • Listen for emergency information and alerts.
  • Only use generators outdoors and away from windows.
  • Turn Around, Don’t Drown! Do not walk, swim, or drive through flood waters.

Prepare NOW

  • Know your area’s risk of hurricanes.
  • Sign up for your community’s warning system. The Emergency Alert System (EAS) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Weather Radio also provide emergency alerts.
  • If you are at risk for flash flooding, watch for warning signs such as heavy rain.
  • Practice going to a safe shelter for high winds, such as a FEMA safe room or ICC 500 storm shelter. The next best protection is a small, interior, windowless room in a sturdy building on the lowest level that is not subject to flooding.
  • Based on your location and community plans, make your own plans for evacuation or sheltering in place.
  • Become familiar with your evacuation zone, the evacuation route, and shelter locations.
  • Gather needed supplies for at least three days. Keep in mind each person’s specific needs, including medication. Don’t forget the needs of pets.
  • Keep important documents in a safe place or create password-protected digital copies.
  • Protect your property. Declutter drains and gutters. Install check valves in plumbing to prevent backups. Consider hurricane shutters. Review insurance policies.

When a hurricane is 36 hours from arriving

  • Turn on your TV or radio in order to get the latest weather updates and emergency instructions.
  • Restock your emergency preparedness kit. Include food and water sufficient for at least three days, medications, a flashlight, batteries, cash, and first aid supplies.
  • Plan how to communicate with family members if you lose power. For example, you can call, text, email or use social media. Remember that during disasters, sending text messages is usually reliable and faster than making phone calls because phone lines are often overloaded.
  • Review your evacuation zone, evacuation route and shelter locations. Plan with your family. You may have to leave quickly so plan ahead.
  • Keep your car in good working condition, and keep the gas tank full; stock your vehicle with emergency supplies and a change of clothes.
  • If you have NFIP flood insurance, your policy may cover up to $1000 in loss avoidance measures, like sandbags and water pumps, to protect your insured property. You should keep copies of all receipts and a record of the time spent performing the work. They should be submitted to your insurance adjuster when you file a claim to be reimbursed. Visit www.fema.gov/media-library/assets/documents/137860 to learn more.

When a hurricane is 18-36 hours from arriving

  • Bookmark your city or county website for quick access to storm updates and emergency instructions.
  • Bring loose, lightweight objects inside that could become projectiles in high winds (e.g., patio furniture, garbage cans); anchor objects that would be unsafe to bring inside (e.g., propane tanks); and trim or remove trees close enough to fall on the building.
  • Cover all of your home’s windows. Permanent storm shutters offer the best protection for windows. A second option is to board up windows with 5/8” exterior grade or marine plywood, cut to fit and ready to install.

When a hurricane is 6-18 hours from arriving

  • Turn on your TV/radio, or check your city/county website every 30 minutes in order to get the latest weather updates and emergency instructions.
  • Charge your cell phone now so you will have a full battery in case you lose power.

When a hurricane is 6 hours from arriving

  • If you’re not in an area that is recommended for evacuation, plan to stay at home or where you are and let friends and family know where you are.
  • Close storm shutters, and stay away from windows. Flying glass from broken windows could injure you.
  • Turn your refrigerator or freezer to the coldest setting and open only when necessary. If you lose power, food will last longer. Keep a thermometer in the refrigerator to be able to check the food temperature when the power is restored.
  • Turn on your TV/radio, or check your city/county website every 30 minutes in order to get the latest weather updates and emergency instructions.

Survive DURING

  • If told to evacuate, do so immediately. Do not drive around barricades.
  • If sheltering during high winds, go to a FEMA safe room, ICC 500 storm shelter, or a small, interior, windowless room or hallway on the lowest floor that is not subject to flooding.
  • If trapped in a building by flooding, go to the highest level of the building. Do not climb into a closed attic. You may become trapped by rising flood water.
  • Listen for current emergency information and instructions.
  • Use a generator or other gasoline-powered machinery outdoors ONLY and away from windows.
  • Do not walk, swim, or drive through flood waters. Turn Around. Don’t Drown! Just six inches of fast-moving water can knock you down, and one foot of moving water can sweep your vehicle away.
  • Stay off of bridges over fast-moving water.


  • Listen to authorities for information and special instructions.
  • Be careful during clean-up. Wear protective clothing and work with someone else.
  • Do not touch electrical equipment if it is wet or if you are standing in water. If it is safe to do so, turn off electricity at the main breaker or fuse box to prevent electric shock.
  • Avoid wading in flood water, which can contain dangerous debris. Underground or downed power lines can also electrically charge the water.
  • Save phone calls for emergencies. Phone systems are often down or busy after a disaster. Use text messages or social media to communicate with family and friends.
  • Document any property damage with photographs. Contact your insurance company for assistance.

Monday, September 10, 2018

Mentality is not good, you will always be a weak person

In life, a good attitude can make you optimistic and open-minded; a good attitude can make you overcome the suffering you face; a good attitude can make you indifferent to fame and fortune and live a truly happy life. The history of civilization for thousands of years of humanity tells us that a positive attitude can help us to obtain health, happiness and wealth.


Mentality determines life

In real life, we can't control our own experiences, but we can control our own mentality; we can't change others, but we can change ourselves. In fact, there is not much difference between people. The real difference lies in the mentality. Therefore, whether a person succeeds or not depends mainly on his mentality.


It’s better to be angry than to be angry

There are good times and adversities in life. It is impossible to be adversity everywhere; there are peaks and valleys in life, and it is impossible to be everywhere. Because of good times or peaks, they are arrogant, and they are dejected because of adversity or low valley. They are all shallow life. In the face of setbacks, if you just complain and get angry, then you are destined to be a weak person forever.


Have confidence to win

Throughout the ages, many people have failed because of incompetence, but because they are not confident. Self-confidence is a force and a motivation. When you are not confident, you are hard to do good things; when you don't do anything bad, you are even less confident. This is a vicious circle. If you want to be free from this vicious circle, you have to fight against failure, you have to establish a strong self-confidence.


Heartbeat is more action

The heart is not as good as action, although the action may not be successful, but it will not succeed without action. Life won't pay you for what you want to do, and you won't pay for what you know, but because you do something to pay for it.

A person's goal is to start with a dream. One's happiness is grasped from the state of mind, and one's success is achieved in action. Because only action, it will nourish your successful food and spring water.


Normally indispensable

Life can't be smooth, successful, and failing; happy and lost. If we look at these ups and downs in our lives too much, then life will never be calm for us, and there will never be laughter.

Life should be pursued, but temporarily not getting it will not hinder the happiness of daily life. Therefore, having a normal heart is an essential lubricating agent for life.


Tolerance is a virtue

As the saying goes: "Retreat to the sky and make a little peace of mind." This means that people need tolerance. Tolerance is a virtue that enables one to be respected. Tolerance is a good medicine that can save a person's soul. Tolerance is like a bright light that radiates light in the darkness and illuminates every soul.


Learn to loosen the mind

The human mind is fragile and needs constant stimulation and comfort. Often self-motivated, self-recognition, will make the soul happy. Learning to loosen the mind is to create a warm harbor for yourself, often walking into the massage for your busy and exhausted mind, so that the various parts of the mind are often maintained and maintained.


Don't fail frustration

Everyone's life will inevitably suffer setbacks and failures. The difference is that the loser always fails the frustration, so that each time can deeply resist the courage of his victory; the winners never give up, always say to themselves in the face of frustration again and again: "I have not failed, but have not succeeded.

If a person who is temporarily lost, if he continues to work hard and intends to win back, then his failure today is not a real failure. On the contrary, if he loses the courage to fight again, it is a real loss.


Change the inner world

In real life, people who are troubled all day long are not suffering from too many misfortunes, but rooted in the inner world of troubled people. Therefore, when troubles come, we should not blame others, nor do we renounce ourselves. We must learn to loosen our hearts, psychologically adjust ourselves, and avoid troubles into heart disease.


Happiness is actually very simple

Some people say that happiness is spring flowers, summer green shades, autumn wild fruits, and winter snow. In fact, happiness is around us. A heart-felt smile, a sincere handshake, and a heart-to-heart conversation are a very happy thing.

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Two in five Indians won’t have access to drinking water by 2030

Two in five Indians won’t have access to drinking water by 2030. A NITI Aayog report shows 21 Indian cities, including Delhi, Bengaluru, Chennai and Hyderabad, are likely to run out of groundwater in the next two years, directly affecting 100 million people. “Given the combination of rapidly declining groundwater levels and limited policy action, this is also likely to be a significant food security risk for the country,” the report said. BBC recently reported that Bengaluru was among the 12 cities globally likely to run out of drinking water in the near future.

Groundwater in India depleted at 10-25 mm per year between 2002 and 2016. Average rainfall declined, from 1,050 mm in the kharif — summer cropping–season of 1970 to less than 1,000 mm in kharif 2015. Similarly, in the winter cropping, or rabi season, average rainfall declined, from Rs 150 mm in 1970 to about 100 mm in 2015. Dry days — days without rainfall — during the monsoons have increased, from ~40% to 45% in 2015.

According to the report 21 Indian cities–including Delhi, Bengaluru, Chennai and Hyderabad–will run out of groundwater by 2020, affecting 100 million people; 40% of India’s population will have no access to drinking water by 2030, the report said.

The time has come when some introspection by the Indian media is required. Many people, not only those in authority but even ordinary people, have started saying that the media have become irresponsible and wayward, and need to be reined in. When the television and print media redirect your thought to casteism, communalism, Beef Issue, Love Jihad, Jinnah etc you are real away from the actual issues.

It is our duty to save this planet rather than relying on political parties to take any corrective measure. We all know that politics in India runs on feudal ideas , castism and communalism.

India's most pressing environmental problems are land damage, water shortages, and air and water pollution. ... Due to uncontrolled dumping of chemical and industrial waste, fertilizers and pesticides, 70% of the surface water in India is polluted.

Delhi needs Trees :-

Delhi was in news today for the #Chipko Movement to save trees, today High Court has put stay on cutting of more than 16,000 trees for redeveloping residential facilities for central government employees in south Delhi.

“Can Delhi afford cutting of trees for the development of roads and buildings?” the High Court asked NBCC. The court will hear the matter again on July 4.

The needed buildings can be built wherever compensatory planting is planned. Delhi needs trees more than any place This matter came in media when thousands of people protested in Delhi against the decision. Do you still think Politicians are concerned about the environment ? When political parties make building a temple as their priority rather saving the environment you can understand the seriousness in saving the nation.

Support our journalism by following us on twitter, We welcome your comments at editor@intelligentindia.in

Monday, April 16, 2018

Delhi Police arrests 19-year-old medical aspirant who posed as AIIMS doctor for five months

According to Hindustan Times, the accused, Adnan Khurram, has been falsely claiming to be a doctor at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences for over five months.

The Hindu reports that the AIIMS Resident Doctors' Association (RDA) has issued a release with Khurram's photograph, saying security personnel have been alerted about his ruse. “He somehow continued his fraudulent activity and associated himself with RDA, AIIMS. He used the name of RDA, AIIMS, to attend different political and medical events," the release says.

Khurram reportedly managed to attend events like marathons and strikes meant exclusively for AIIMS doctors. He even managed to befriend doctors and medical students across departments using his fake identity.

But it was this very enthusiasm that led to his ruse getting exposed. According to Financial Express, doctors became suspicious of Khurram when he was attending a marathon on Saturday. As he was not able to answer questions from the doctors in a satisfactory manner, he was arrested by the police.

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Why Is Sugar Bad for Us ?

Sugar is an appetizer, an addictive agent, a stimulant and a storehouse of empty (devoid of nutrition) calories.

  • Destroys the digestive enzymes in the mouth, stomach, small intestines and pancreas.
  • Reduces the hydrochloric acid in the stomach. Food is thus not properly digested and absorbed, leading to constipation.
  • Robs the body of almost all nutrients, especially chromium, zinc and calcium, and vitamins C and B-complex.
  • Increases the appetite.
  • Results in swings in the blood sugar levels.
  • Causes hyperactivity in children.
  • Is made with acid and is acid-yielding in our body, resulting in the leaching out of  calcium from bones. It causes cavities and osteoporosis.
  • It has no nutrients––only empty calories––and causes weight gain.
  • Excess sugar is converted into fat and can cause fatty liver disease.
  • It causes the release of dopamine (as do drugs) and is highly addictive.

Sugar versus Fruit

As a diabetic, I am sure you try not to consume sugar. Consuming sugar in the free form, or as an additive, or even in the form of juice, syrup, honey, molasses, jaggery, etc. will raise the blood sugar levels. Sugar goes straight into the bloodstream. But naturally sweet foods, such as fruit, sweet potato, beetroot, dates and even whole sugar cane, etc. will not cause a problem. The fibre in these whole foods prevents the sugar from going straight into the bloodstream. I have seen many diabetics overjoyed with our meal plans because they can eat as much fruit as they like. There is absolutely no restriction on the kind of fruit. Mangoes, bananas, grapes, sapodillas (chikoo/sapota) and custard apples can be relished again.

Artificial Sweeteners

Sweeteners such as saccharin, sucralose and aspartame are never recommended. Some of these are extremely harmful, can promote diabetes and even cancer, and do not help in reducing the blood sugar levels. As you know, no diabetic gets better by consuming these sweeteners. Even natural ones like stevia, agave, maple syrup and honey are not recommended. They too stimulate the sweet taste buds, keeping us addicted to the sweet taste. As you may have seen, sweets are highly addictive, but fruit is generally not. When we completely stop consuming sugar and other sweeteners, we find that our taste buds have changed. Sugar can become too sweet and undesirable as we start experiencing the sweetness of vegetables like peas, carrots and onions. And we stop craving sweets.
The advantage of never consuming sugar or sweeteners is that a day will come when you will be able to refuse a cake or walk past the dessert section of a buffet without ever having a pang of desire. I know that may sound absurd to some of you now, but I have seen it happen over and over again.
I have seen some diabetics––who have completely stopped consuming sugar and don’t take additives––feel the same way. They can detect artificial sweetness in anything!
Then there are others who decide to have this tantalizing substance only on rare occasions (weddings, birthdays, parties, etc.). The only problem with this is that sugar is a highly addictive substance. If we go back to consuming it, we can get addicted again, just like a smoker who has quit smoking can get addicted to tobacco again.

Saturday, April 7, 2018

Dust storm in Delhi trips power line of new Pink Line metro, diverts 29 flights

Train services on the recently-opened Pink Line of the Delhi Metro were affected  today for nearly two hours after a section of the overhead electrification (OHE) tripped on the down line due to the dust storm in the evening. The powerful dust storm hit the national capital in several parts of the city, throwing life out of gear. DMRC officials said the OHE of down line (towards South Campus) kept tripping from 6:25 PM onwards due to the sudden storm. The Pink Line corridor was opened on March 14. It connects Majlis Park station to Durgabai Deshmukh South Campus station on the metro network. “To keep the services running properly, trains were run on the up line between Naraina and South Campus section. “One train which was stuck between Cantt and South Campus section due to OHE tripping, was vacated (carrying 23 paasengers) towards Cantt side as it was quite near,” the DMRC said in a statement. Tripping issues were sorted out at 8:20 PM on this section and normal services were restored on the entire corridor, officials said.

Article By Maneka Gandhi

Altruism is the conscious and deliberate giving of something you may need yourself but are prepared to donate for another’s wellbeing. Very few humans are altruistic. I see people who give their old clothes to their own servants, or less fortunate relatives, and they think they are being very generous. People who celebrate their birthdays by calling a few poor children to share their goodies – that is not altruism. Nor is giving things to your children that once belonged to you – that is genetic self interest.

Altruism exists only when the donor expects nothing from the recipient and is not related. Animals do it much more gracefully than humans.

Vampire bats drink the blood of mammals, usually cattle, horses, deer. These small creatures, less than 4 inches long and 40 gms in weight, live in the jungles of South America. They hunt at night and are adept at crawling on a body till they find a suitable blood vessel which they puncture softly and lap up the trickling blood.

Upto 2,000 animals live in the same roosting area. If a vampire bat does not find a mammal it goes without a meal for one night. But it takes three days for a bat to starve to death and a weakened creature cannot even fly to find a host. And so, every now and then, a bat that has failed to find blood will beg a meal from a stranger in the roost. The donor will, without question, regurgitate blood and share the meal.

A well documented case is that of a group of sperm whales off the coast of Lisbon, Portugal, who took a handicapped adult bottlenose dolphin into their group. The dolphin travelled, foraged, and played with the adult whales and their calves. When it rubbed its body against the whales, they would sometimes even return the gesture. There was no benefit to the whales of forming this bond with the handicapped dolphin.

Dolphins are known for their compassion. In 2008, one bottlenose dolphin came to the rescue of two beached whales in New Zealand and led them into safe waters. Without the dolphin’s guidance, the whales would have died. In another incident in New Zealand, a group of human swimmers were surprised when dolphins began circling around them, splashing in the water. The swimmers initially thought the dolphins were displaying aggressive behaviour, but it turned out that they were warding off sharks.

Classic examples of altruists are ravens. If one, or a few, come across food, they make loud calls to attract even more ravens. Most ecological theory stipulates that a food bonanza should be defended, not shared. But these birds do share — to the point that some of the ravens even returned to their roost to bring in more birds.

Social insects live together and allow an individual to flourish by helping every other insect in the community. But that is not pure altruism. I would count it business as usual, or programming for survival. Bees protecting a swarm by stinging and, in the process, dying horribly as the stinger pulls out the entire abdomen, or certain species of termites releasing a sticky secretion by rupturing their own glands to protect the nest against invaders, is also programmed behaviour. In ants, wasps, bees and termites, sterile workers devote their whole lives to caring for the queen, constructing and protecting the nest, foraging for food, and tending the larvae. That’s not altruism. That’s just doing their jobs.

For instance, meerkats have one standing guard to warn the community while the rest feed in case of predator attack. Into that category I would even put examples of extreme sacrifice. For instance, the mother spider Stegodyphus, who allows her infants to eat her, or a male spider allowing a female fertilized by him to eat him.

I would not even put trading in kindnesses as altruism. For instance, a monkey will get its insects pulled out by a member of the pack and then, in return will do the same. Or a female wolf that offers to stay behind with the cubs while the rest of the pack goes hunting. Altruism would be those single wolves who bring back meat for those too sick or nursing to go on the hunt.

Altruism is the following: Mongooses and bonobos who support sick, handicapped or elderly animals. Chimpanzees who help other chimpanzees and even humans without expecting anything in return. Dolphins who support sick or injured animals, swimming under them for hours and pushing them to the surface so they can breathe.

Walruses adopt orphans. African Buffalo often turn around in their flight from predators in order to rescue a member of the herd who has been surrounded. Male and female lemurs take care of infants unrelated to them. Vervet monkeys send out alarms to warn other moneys of predators, even if it means putting themselves in danger, by attracting attention. In many bird species, the parents receive help from unrelated “helper” birds in feeding their babies. Harpagifer bispinis fish live in the Antarctic peninsula. If the parent guarding the nest of eggs is removed, an unrelated male will guard the nest from predators and prevent fungal growth that would kill off the brood.

A unique example of altruism is found in the Dictyostelium mucoroides slime mould. These live as individuals until food is so short that they start starving. Then they get together and form a body in which some cells sacrifice themselves to promote the survival of other cells.

Elephants go out of their way to assist others in need. Like saving a calf from drowning and spraying water on an injured member of the herd to keep it cool.

A study in the journal Marine Mammal Science described the altruism of humpback whales, giving examples of how the giant creatures help seals and other creatures being attacked by killer whales. The researchers concluded that while it made sense for humpbacks to defend their own calves, they had nothing to gain by meddling in attacks on other species. Interspecific altruism," the scientists wrote, "could not be ruled out."

Have you seen the You Tube video of a rhesus macaque successfully resuscitating another of its species which had been electrocuted at a train station? The persistence and concern was amazing and entirely selfless.

Rats are the most altruistic of species. They go out of their way to help others in distress. They will share food with strangers, They will refuse in scientific experiments to inflict pain on each other even if it means dying themselves. When given the choice of escaping or staying to help a strange rat in distress, they almost always choose the latter. Their decisions are always kind. How sad that we use these creatures to experiment on, killing over a billion a year.

All societies, whether human or bat, depend on deliberate and reciprocal kindnesses. Violence spreads and nations shatter when we forget that.

Maneka Sanjay Gandhi

Pl. add: To join the animal welfare movement contact gandhim@nic.in, www.peopleforanimalsindia.org

Sunday, April 1, 2018

India is one country where pharmacists are the best doctors and give antibiotics across the counter

India is one country where pharmacists are the best doctors and give antibiotics across the counter. I have seen both educated and uneducated seek the advice of the pharmacist for treatment. Invariably, it is a bad decision by the patients. Health experts agree that using antibiotics without prescription is one of the major problems causing antibiotic resistance in the world. India has a track record of huge consumption of antibiotics.

The consumption has increased by 103 percent in just 15 years, from 2000 to 2015. Published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, the study tracked antibiotic consumption in 76 countries. It has also projected total global antibiotic consumption by 2030. How to minimize the prescription of antibiotics? The reality is that antibiotics prescribed for viral infections are ineffective and unnecessary. It is a big challenge to restrain doctors from prescribing antibiotics on symptoms alone. Only after diagnostic tests are done, the antibiotics should be recommended and tighter control should be exercised on prescriptions. What is happening now is that unethical doctors have a favourite pharmacy or own a pharmacy and are happy to suggest a course of antibiotics. This is the curse in India, and the patient has to live with it. Luckily a few elite patients have started realizing the implication of antibiotics through net reference. What is important in a country which is predominantly rural and semi urban is the government’s role. It has to muster all its tools to reverse the tide of antibiotic misuse that threatens to unleash drug resistant infections

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Pollution:March to protect Taj

To highlight the pollution threat to the Taj Mahal, the 17th century monument of love, environmental activists on Sunday marched along the Yamuna r iver with posters and banners. Activist Devashish Bhattacharya said the "Taj was being continuously sandblasted in this hot weather as the riverbed had gone dry. "Though the Yogi government has announced a barrage on the Yamuna, downstream of the Taj Mahal, no date has been set for laying the foundation stone." The protesters said "we want uninterrupted flow of water in the river to ensure that the ambience around the Taj Mahal, the Agra Fort, Itimad-ud-Daula's Tomb and Ram Bagh was transformed and the air pollution brought down". Ranjan Shar ma and Shailendra Singh Narwaar of the River Connect Campaign told IANS: "We have been holding marches and meetings for the past several years but unfortunately there has not been an inch of movement to reduce air pollution in Agra which has so many world heritage monuments." The march promoters said the Yamuna riverbed needed immediate desilting and dredging. River activists Rahul Raj and Deepak Rajput said: "Tons of polythene and leather cuttings from shoe factories had prevented seepage of water and polluted the river." Meanwhile, work on clearing up the debris and wild growth on the controversial Taj Heritage Corridor, sandwiched between the Taj Mahal and the Agra Fort, began two days ago. "The ASI plans to green up the entire 20 hectares of reclaimed riverbed which will improve the ambience and help control air pollution," an official said. The corridor project was the brainchild of former Chief Minister Mayawati. A Supreme Court order in 2003 stopped work on the project and is believed to have led to the fall of the Mayawati government.

Saturday, March 24, 2018

Indian government sets goal to be tuberculosis-free by 2025

With India having one of the highest rates of tuberculosis-related deaths per year, PM Modi says the government has set a deadline to end tuberculosis in the country by 2025.

Monday, March 19, 2018

Warning: Using e-cigarettes can harm your liver, says study

New Delhi: For most people, the topic of e-cigarette safety is of constant debate. Is it safer than normal cigarettes or is it more harmful? Does it induce the habit of smoking tobacco or increase the chances of fatality?

Many studies on these vaping pens have shown contradictory results – while some say, it reduces the impulse to smoke cigarettes as well as the risk of death, others have said the complete opposite.

Two studies carried out last year, for instance, had contradictory evidence to show. While one said that vaping could reduce mortality rate, the other said that the practice may double the risk of smoking.

Now, as the government continues to caution people against tobacco and e-cigarettes, a new study has suggested that the use of e-cigarettes may lead to an accumulation of fat in the liver.

New Diabetes Drug May Help Shed Those Extra Kilos

A compound that mimics a naturally occurring hormone that regulates appetite may help obese people shed those extra kilos, according to a recent study. The compound, semaglutide, has a chemical structure that is very similar to the hormone glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP-1), which regulates both insulin secretion and appetite. In December, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the semaglutide injection Ozempic as a once-weekly adjunct to diet and exercise to improve glycemic control in adults with type 2 diabetes.

"This randomized study of weight loss induced with semaglutide in people with obesity but without diabetes has shown the highest weight reductions yet seen for any pharmaceutical intervention," said lead author Patrick M. O'Neil of the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, S.C.

The new study included 957 participants, 35 percent of whom were male. All participants had a body mass index (BMI) of at least 30, but did not have diabetes. They were randomly assigned to seven different groups. Five groups received different doses of semaglutide (between 0.05 mg and 0.4 mg) via injection once daily; a sixth group received a placebo, and a seventh group received 3 mg of the diabetes drug liraglutide. All participants received monthly diet and exercise counseling.

After one year, all participants receiving semaglutide had lost significantly more weight than those receiving placebo. The higher the dose participants received, the greater their average weight loss. Participants who received 0.05 mg of semaglutide daily lost an average of 6.0 percent of their body weight; the 0.1 mg group lost an average of 8.6 percent; the 0.3 mg group lost an average of 11.2 percent; and those receiving a daily dose of 0.4 mg lost an average of 13.8 percent. Those receiving liraglutide lost an average of 7.8 percent of their body weight, while those in the placebo group lost only 2.3 percent on average.

Sixty five percent of participants who received 0.4 mg of semaglutide per day lost at least 10 percent of their body weight, compared with 10 percent of those in the placebo group and 34 percent of the liraglutide group.

The most common adverse events in those taking semaglutide were mild/moderate nausea, as seen previously with GLP-1 receptor agonists. O'Neil noted that further studies of semaglutide for obesity are underway. The research was presented at ENDO 2018, the Endocrine Society's 100th annual meeting in Chicago, Ill.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

High-Fiber Generates Gut Bacteria Good for Type 2 Diabetes

A select "guild" of gut bacteria responsible for the benefits of high-fiber diets in type 2 diabetes has been identified in a study in which those patients on the high-fiber diet showed improved control of HbA1c.

Effectively, eating the right dietary fibers may rebalance the gut microbiome and lead to reduced blood sugar and body weight, and may pave the way for a new nutritional approach to preventing and managing type 2 diabetes, say the researchers.

The specific bacteria thought to be effective produce short chain fatty acids (SCFAs).

"Targeted promotion of the active SCFA producers...via personalized nutrition may present a novel ecological approach for manipulating the gut microbiota to manage type 2 diabetes and potentially other dysbiosis-related diseases," write the authors led by Liping Zhao, PhD, from the School of Environmental and Biological Sciences, Rutgers University-New Brunswick, New Jersey.

The research was conducted in China, and was published in the March 9 issue of Science.

However, separately, in an article published online November 1, 2017, in Gut, a whole-grain diet failed to alter insulin sensitivity and the gut microbiome in healthy individuals at risk for development of metabolic syndrome. But the high-fiber diet did lead to lower body weight and less systemic low-grade inflammation.
Certain Fibers Could Become Part of the Treatment for Type 2 Diabetes

In their paper, Zhao and colleagues explain that gut microbes play a range of roles in response to food intake, and they suggest that chronic diseases, such as type 2 diabetes, may in part result from a deficiency in SCFA production from carbohydrate fermentation in the gut.

Saturday, February 10, 2018

The billionaire brothers behind Fortis Healthcare are under a scanner

Bloomberg reports that founders Malvinder Singh and Shivinder Singh allegedly took out about ₹500 crore from the hospital chain last year without the board’s consent. But the company has denied any wrongdoing, qualifying the transactions as loans (to related parties) for which repayment has already commenced. Yesterday, the Singh brothers resigned from the Fortis board following a Delhi High Court ruling in another matter. Investors seem to be backing the exits — the company shares hit their 52-week high on the BSE today.

Nearly a fourth of all children in urban India are malnourished

An IndiaSpend report covering the country's 10 most populous cities — including metros like Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore, and Chennai — shows that 22% children under five are stunted, 21.4% are underweight and 14% are wasted. Reasons range from poverty and illiteracy to feeding patterns and government service delivery. Another recent report by IndiaSpend said that only one in 10 Indian children under two years gets adequate nutrition.

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Chinese use Dolly science to create monkey clones

Biologists in Shanghai, China, have created the first primates cloned with a technique similar to the one used to clone Dolly the sheep and nearly two dozen other species. The method has failed to produce live primates until now.

Researchers hope to use this revised technique to develop populations of genetically identical primates to provide improved animal models of human disorders, such as cancer. The technology, described in Cell on 24 January, could also be combined with gene-editing tools such as CRISPR–Cas9 to create genetically engineered primate-brain models of human disorders, including Parkinson’s disease.

“This paper really marks the beginning of a new era for biomedical research,” says Xiong Zhi-Qi, a neuroscientist who studies brain disease at the Chinese Academy of Sciences Institute of Neuroscience (ION) in Shanghai. He was not involved in the cloning project.

But the achievement is also likely to raise some concerns among scientists and the public that the technique might be used to create cloned humans. “Technically, there is no barrier to human cloning,” says ION director Mu-Ming Poo, who is a co-author of the study. But ION is interested only in making cloned non-human primates for research groups, says Poo: “We want to produce genetically identical monkeys. That is our only purpose.”

Primates have proved tricky to copy, despite many attempts using the standard cloning technique. In that method, the DNA of a donor cell is injected into an egg that has had its own genetic material removed.

ION researchers Sun Qiang and Liu Zhen combined several techniques developed by other groups to optimize the procedure. One trick was to undo chemical modifications in the DNA that occur when embryonic cells turn into specialized cells. The researchers had more success with DNA from fetal cells, rather than cells from live offspring.

Using fetal cells, they created 109 cloned embryos, and implanted nearly three-quarters of them into 21 surrogate monkeys. This resulted in six pregnancies. Two long-tailed macaques (Macaca fascicularis) survived birth: Zhong Zhong, now eight weeks old, and Hua Hua, six weeks. Poo says that the pair seem healthy so far. The institute is now awaiting the birth of another six clones.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Skipping is one of the most effective cardio exercises says study

If you are looking for an uncomplicated full-body workout, which literally takes minutes, then the skipping rope is your best friend. It targets all your muscles while not being too tiring or time consuming. According to the Daily Star, a new study has found out that skipping is one of the most effective cardio exercises. After six weeks of monitoring, it came to light that 10-minute jump-rope sessions a day were more efficient than 30-minute jogging sessions. Participants demonstrated improvement in their cardio-vascular health. It turned out that jumping up and down is a more efficient workout than hitting the pavement. The research further stated that skipping burns more calories per minute and engages more muscles than rowing or swimming. 

Selecting the rope

For a proper workout, you need the rope to be of the right length. A rope too long or too short will mess things up. The classic test is to stand with the rope under your feet and pull the handles so that they’re reaching your armpits. This is the perfect length.

Land on the balls of your feet

Now that you’ve a rope the next step is to start skipping. Make sure that you’re jumping on the balls of your feet, which is the area right under the toes and not your heels. Jumping on your heels can lead to injury and also prevent you from working your calves properly.

Focus on your arms

Remember that skipping should only involve your wrists moving and not your elbows or arms. Using your arms and shoulders will widen the diameter making it a harder activity that won’t last as long and that just isn’t a good thing. Also the position of the hands is of extreme importance. Make sure they are slightly above your waistline and are comfortably bent.

Ketogenic Diet Can Sustain Weight Loss Better Than Low-Fat Diets, Says Study

At a time when obesity and metabolic diseases have become the world’s biggest health problems, the ketogenic diet, often called keto, seems to have emerged as one of the best solutions to manage excess weight and improve health. The Keto diet, which was one of the most googled health topics in 2017, is also gaining more and more popularity among celebrities across the globe. In fact, American reality television personality Kim Kardashian revealed that it was the keto diet that helped her shed her baby weight. With Kim losing 70 pounds (31kg), the reality star is among the celebrity weight loss winners who has turned keto diets into an increasingly popular trend. Hollywood actress and mother-of-two, Halle Berry, credits the diet as her main effort to keep fit. Perhaps, many other celebrities, including Alec Baldwin, Adriana Lima, Megan Fox, Matthew McConaughey, Tom Jones, Robin Wright, Jessica Biel and Gwyneth Paltrow reportedly follow the ketogenic diet to quickly drop weight or keep them fit.

A report published in the January 2018 issue of the Journal of American Medical Association said that participants of studies on ketogenic diets have reported more satiety and lesser hunger pangs than people who follow other diets with similar calorific intake. This is because the ketogenic diet results in ketones in the liver which are then utilized by the body as energy, and ketones are directly responsible for reducing hunger. Moreover, fats and proteins also have satiating properties.

Sunday, January 21, 2018

JIPMER completes 50 robot-assisted surgeries

A team of doctors successfully performed robot-assisted partial nephrectomy (surgical removal of a part of the diseased kidney) on a patient suffering from renal cancer on Thursday.

The urology department of the institute tops the list for performing the highest number of robotic surgeries (24) followed by the departments of surgical oncology and surgical gastroenterology with 10 surgeries each and the department of obstetrics and gynaecology with six surgeries.

Soon, other departments including paediatric surgery, cardiac thoracic and vascular surgery and ENT (eyes, nose and throat) and head and neck surgery will start performing robotic surgery, said director, S C Parija.

The institute charges Rs 30,000 for patients in general ward and Rs 50,000 for patients in the special ward for performing a robotic surgery. "The user charges are much less when compared to corporate hospitals where this facility will be charged roughly between Rs 2 lakh and Rs 3 lakh per procedure," Parija said.

The maiden robot-assisted minimal access surgery was performed in JIPMER in July last year.

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Rocket Man Who Sent 104 Satellites Into Orbit Is New ISRO Chairman

Rocket specialist K Sivan has been appointed Chairman of India's space agency ISRO for a three-year term. He replaces current ISRO Chairman AS Kiran Kumar, whose term ends January 14.

Mr Sivan is currently Director of Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre in Trivandrum and had mastered the development of cryogenic engines for India. A cryogenic engine uses liquefied gases stored at low temperature as fuel.

It was Mr Sivan's expertise that gave ISRO the ability to send 104 satellites in a single mission, setting a world record in February last year. He was the key person who worked on the technicalities of how the satellites would be placed in orbit.