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Taking short breaks from sitting, even for only one minute, might trim your waistline and improve your heart health, according to a new study.

People in the study who took the most breaks from sitting — up to 1,258 short breaks in one week — were about two pant sizes smaller than those who took the fewest, as few as 99 breaks in one week, said study researcher who studies population health at the University of Queensland in Australia.

A smaller waistline also means less abdominal fat and better heart health.

A high waist circumference is associated with an increased risk for type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease.

When we stand, the large muscles in our legs and the back are continually contracting to maintain our posture, but when we sit or recline, these muscle groups are basically inactive.

So even short breaks from sitting get these large muscle groups contracting.

Measuring activity
Researchers studied 4,757 people, ages 20 and older, who participated in the U.S. National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. All participants wore an accelerometer on their right hips for seven days during their waking hours.

These accelerometers measured the amount and intensity of the participants' physical activity every minute. When activity levels were very low, the researchers assumed the participants were sedentary,.

Participants ranged from 1.8 hours of sedentary time a day to 21.2 hours a day, according to the study. The average length of a break from sitting was 4.12 minutes.

Researchers found that even among those who spent a long time sitting, those who took a lot of breaks had smaller waistlines and lower levels of C-reactive protein — an indicator of inflammation in the body — than those who didn't take breaks.

The 25 percent of people who took the most breaks from sitting had waistlines that were, on average, 1.61 inches (4.1 centimeters) smaller than the 25 percent of people who took the fewest breaks, according to the study.

The finding comes on the heels of a study published earlier this week in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, which found that spending more than four hours of your leisure time in front of your computer or TV a day can increase the risk of being hospitalized for, or dying from, heart disease.

And a 2009 study of 5,453 people showed that a 1-centimeter increase in waist circumference is associated with an increased chance of premature death.

Since the study relied on results from the accelerometers, instead of self-reported information from participants, the results "provide a foundation" for exploring why periods of long sitting are bad for health.

For example, researchers could now further explore the way insulin levels are affected by movement, and therefore lack of movement. Being consistently active may increase insulin sensitivity, whereas inactivity can lead to insulin resistance, a precursor to type 2 diabetes.

Inflammation in the body in response to physical activity or high-fat meals might be another a culprit.

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Weight loss may have an unwanted side effect, according to a new study. It may send a flood of environmental pollutants into the bloodstream.

Body fat stores certain pollutants, including such pesticides as DDT and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). If a person loses weight and significant amounts of body fat are broken down, these chemical compounds, known as persistent organic pollutants, are released and can lead to disease.

"The strong belief on weight change is that weight loss is always good while weight gain is always bad," but that may not always hold up, said study researcher.

Hypertension, type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease and rheumatoid arthritis have been linked to persistent organic pollutants, Lee said.

The researchers analyzed data collected by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention between 1999 and 2002. They selected seven pollutants that had the highest detection rate in blood samples, and focused on 1,099 people ages 40 or older who had measurable levels of these pollutants in their blood and who had also lost or gained weight.

By the study's end, they found that those who had lost weight had higher concentrations of most of the pollutants they measured, while those who had gained weight had lowered their pollutant concentrations. The trend was even more significant among people who reported they had gained or lost weight over a 10-year period, according to the researchers.

A lot of studies have shown that losing weight is helpful because it lowers levels of sugar and fat in the blood as well as blood pressure. However, there may be other aspects of health that losing weight can negatively influence, she said, pointing out that a previous study involving him linked weight loss to calcification of the coronary arteries.

Although many of the dangerous chemicals examined in the study were banned by developed countries several decades ago, they are still commonly found in the environment and in people because they take a long time to break down.

The net effects of weight loss should be viewed as a mix of the benefits of decreasing fat tissue and the harmful effects of increasing the concentration of pollutants in the blood, she said.

Because the study was based on self-reported information about change in weight, people who inaccurately recalled their change in weight may have distorted the findings, the researchers noted.

Recommendation to exercise and sticking to a plant-based diet to help to rid the body of these pollutants during weight loss. Of course, not becoming overweight in the first place would eliminate the costs paid by obese people who want to return to being non-obese.

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Raspberries might prove a future tool in the fight against cancer. New research reveals that extracts of the summer fruit kill stomach and colon cancer cells.

In a preliminary study, 90 per cent of these cells were destroyed when exposed to an extract of red Meeker raspberries, a popular variety in the U.S.

Antioxidants in the fruit were also shown to kill breast cancer cells.

US researchers say that while the antioxidants in the red fruit explain some of the effects, other as yet unidentified compounds seem to be at work as well.

Unfortunately, experts believe the anti-cancer effect is seen only when the extract is applied directly to the diseased cells, and not when the fruit is eaten.

The research team now hope to start further studies to pinpoint the other cancer-fighting compounds in the fruit.

Also, did you know that nose spray keeps your hunger pangs at bay?

A nasal spray that masks the smell of food could help overweight people to lose pounds. US researchers have discovered that a type of drug used to lower blood pressure can also curb appetite and lead to weight loss.

The drug used, CP404, is a calcium channel blocker. Calcium produced by the body can narrow blood vessels and raise blood pressure; calcium-channel blockers work by helping the blood vessels relax and widen, lowering pressure.

However, calcium is also thought to play a role in the sense of smell. Results from the first human trial of the spray show it blocked the sense of smell compared with a simple saline spray, and had no side-effects.

As a result, participants were less interested in, and consumed less, food.

Now, there is something to debate about during lunchtime!

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Smoking a single cigarette causes genetic damage to the body within minutes rather than years, researchers say.

In a report - described as 'a grim warning' to those tempted to start smoking - scientists found that cancer-causing chemicals in tobacco form rapidly after the first inhalation from a cigarette.

An estimated 24.8 million men and 21.1 million women are smokers. Half of long-term smokers will die prematurely due to cigarettes. They are at higher risk of heart attack and stroke.

A harmful substance widely known as PAHs or polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons has been studied and long believed to be one of the main causes of lung cancer, but up till today it is not known how the chemicals caused DNA damage in humans. Another harmful substance known as phenanthrene was included in the study. They found that phenanthrene quickly forms a toxic substance in the blood known to trash DNA, causing mutations that can cause cancer.

The smokers developed maximum levels of the substance in a time frame that surprised even the researchers: just 15 to 30 minutes after the volunteers finished smoking.

The researchers said the effect is so fast that it's equivalent to injecting the substance directly into the bloodstream.

If you are craving for another stick, think again. And if your tempted to start, think hard again.

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For years the advice has been clear: eating five portions a day of fruit and vegetables is the key to a healthy life.

But five may no longer be enough.

A study has found that to get maximum defense against heart disease, you need to eat at least eight daily servings of fresh food. Now the new study suggests every extra portion provides added protection.

Significantly, those in the ­highest category – eating eight or more a day – have a 22 per cent lower chance of dying from heart disease than those who consume three ­portions.

A ‘portion’ weighs just under 85grams, equal to a small banana, a medium apple or a small carrot.

Cardiovascular disease is the most common cause of death. A reduction of 22 per cent is huge. There would need to be big shift in dietary patterns to achieve this healthy consumption of eight portions a day. It is worth trying to move in that direction.

Scientists have previously suggested 15,000 lives a year could be saved if everyone ate five a day.

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When you catch the bus you are also at risk of catching a nasty bug that has come along for the ride.

Researchers found patients who had recently travelled by public transport were six times more likely to visit the doctor with an acute respiratory infection.

However, this did not hold true for those who used buses or trams every day - perhaps because they had built up immunity over time.

The results could be useful when discussing ways of dealing with epidemics and pandemics.

Experts said the findings confirmed the need to regularly wash your hands and sneeze into your elbow when on public transport to stem the spread of flu viruses.

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Eat nuts and have a fried breakfast.

That's right, you heard me.

The good news for men is that ­scientists have ­discovered a cause of baldness — the failure of hair-producing cells to develop properly.

The bad news is that effective treatment could be a years away. While your genes play a major role in hair loss, what many men don’t realize is that their everyday habits could be worsening the problem.

Here are some of the ways you can adopt to minimize it.

1) Brush lightly

This can scratch the scalp and pull the hair out at the root, ­damaging the hair follicle.

It’s important to treat the scalp gently when shampooing, and never tug at your hair with a brush or comb.

Dandruff, eczema or dermatitis (characterised by an itchy, flaky scalp) are linked to hair loss; they trigger ­inflammation, which has an adverse effect on hair follicles.

2) Eat a cooked breakfast

Hair is composed of keratin, which gives it its strength. Too ­little protein (red meat, fish, eggs, chicken) affects keratin levels; your hair will lose its strength and stop growing.

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day for boosting your hair follicles

3) Avoid petroleum based waxes

There is some evidence that petroleum-based styling waxes (look for paraffin or petroleum on the label’s list of ingredients) can block hair follicles and cause them to stop growing/

This is especially true if it is used heavily over a long time. Stick to water-based products.

4) Use relaxation technique

Having an excess of male ­hormones may not sound like a bad thing, but testosterone and dihydrotestosterone (DHT) can have an adverse effect on certain parts of the hair follicle, says Philip Kingsley.

They seep down the hair shaft and cause it to become thinner, making the hairs seem further apart. Once the hair shrinks to a ­certain diameter it will stop growing completely. When men are under stress, their body ­produces more male hormones, and so tend to lose more hair.

5) Go nuts for more hair

A lack of dietary iron can also lead to hair loss. If you don’t have enough iron, your levels of ferritin drop (this is a molecule that stores iron in the body and releases it in a ­controlled way).

This in turn disrupts the normal hair growth cycle and increases hair shedding. Eating foods rich in iron, such as red meat, dark green vegetables, nuts and dried fruits, will help reduce this excess hair shedding.

6) Don't colour your hair

Frequent colouring of the hair — either an all over dye or highlights — can lead to hair loss. Using significant amounts of bleach (found in nearly all hair lightening products) can strip it of its natural moisture, leading to dry, brittle hair that breaks easily.

This tends to make hair look much thinner. Studies have also shown that dyes that contain the chemical para-phenylenediamine (PPD) can cause severe allergic reactions and dermatitis, which may lead to damage to the scalp and hair follicles.

7) Stop smoking

Recent research from the ­journal Archives of Dermatology suggest that, as well as ­causing cancer and heart disease, smoking can also make your hair fall out.

It is thought that, just as ­smoking can cause damage to peripheral blood vessels in the body, it may also damage blood supply to the hair follicle.

The free radicals produced from smoking and environmental ­factors such as pollution could also affect hair follicles, leading to hair loss.

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According to a new research, better diet and medical care means one in six of us will live to 100.

Here are some easy steps on how you can reach your centenary.

1) Get a pet

Be it a dog or a cat or a rabbit, pet owners enjoy a longer and healthier life than the rest of the population. U.S researchers also found that stroking your pet can cause blood pressure to drop by 10 percent. Plus, there is a benefit of exercise from dog walking - lowering blood cholesterol.

2) Walk Around

The less time you spend sitting, the longer your lifespan. Studies found that women who sat for more than 6 hours a day had a 37 percent increased risk of premature death compared to those who sat for 3 hours or less.

Sitting slows the metabolism, which can eventually cause obesity. But getting up every 30 minutes can dramatically reduce the bad effects.

3) Stay Happily Married

Scientists found that married men were 6 percent less likely to die in a seven year period than single men. The death risk dropped by 2.9 percent for women. Psychologists shared that being happily married enhances the feelings of security that lead to someone taking a more relaxed approach to life.

4) Keep the Faith

Attending a religious service at least once a week could you live longer.Experts found that church goers were 28 percent less likely to die in a six year period. They tend to smoke and drink less, take physical exercise and maintain stable marriages.

5) Make Money - and Share It

Being wealthy or well off triggers the release of a hormone called DHEAS (or dehydroepiandrosterone), which has been linked to longer life. U.S researchers found that older people who were helpful and generous to other lowered their risk of dying early by up to 60 percent, possibly because they were not burdened with as much guilt and stress.


A Dutch study of 1,000 men and women aged 65 to 85 found that those who were positive about the future and relationships had a 55 per cent lower premature death rate.

Another U.S. study revealed that pessimists lived an average 12 years less than optimists.

‘It’s likely that optimistic people have lower levels of stress hormones,’ says Dearbhla McCullough. ‘Also, negative people are less likely to self-check for serious diseases such as cancer, which could affect their lifespan.

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Surprisingly, ATM machines are dirtier than public washrooms. Studies has proven that ATM machines contain bacteria that can cause diarrhea and other unfortunate illnesses.

Most people would have listed public toilets asthe most dirtiest following by public telephones, bus stops, train stations, bus seats, train seats, train stations. How ironic, when experts confirmed that ATM machines are dirtier than public toilets.

Now that is something, we might want to think about the next time we cash out.

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Studies estimate that about one-third of the adult population in the world experiences some insomnia each year.

Experts estimate that only about 5 percent of people with insomnia seek medical help, and 69% never even mention the problem to their doctor.

More than 35 million Americans suffer from long-lasting insomnia, with 20-30 million others experiencing shorter-term sleeplessness. In the US, as many as 100,000 automobile accidents and 1,500 deaths from these accidents are caused by sleepiness.

Substance abuse - especially alcohol, cocaine and sedatives - plays a role in an estimated 10-15 percent of cases of chronic insomnia.

Treatment is usually with short-term sleeping tablets or relaxation exercises and dietary advice. However, many insomniacs suffer in silence, perceiving their condition as trivial and untreatable.

Experts has studied and found that the heart rates played a key role in their rhythm of sleep when patients are in or near sleep. When a person has anxious thoughts, their heart rate goes up and, in turn, the mind starts to ‘race’ and the brain becomes alert and stimulated.

The brain generates beta waves when aroused and actively engaged in mental activities.

A simple way to control your heart rate is to place your hand on your heart so you can feel it, and breathe in deeply and slowly for three ­seconds and out for three. You will feel your heart rate slowing down, which, in turn, slows down the brain activity. It really does work. There are reportedly clients dozing off while practising this.

As any insomniac knows, by far the worst enemy of sleep is the dreaded ‘brain chatter’: the endless stream of thoughts in your head. Accept that it is part of being human and let it wash over you.

When you sleep is not important, it's the quality of sleep that matters.

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Research shows that getting up from your desk to go and speak to your colleagues - instead of emailing them - reduces the risk of heart attacks.

Those who take short breaks away from their seats – lasting as little as a minute – at regular intervals throughout the day are less likely to be overweight and have high blood pressure.

They also substantially reduce the risk of potentially fatal cardiovascular diseases.

Researchers found that people who are on their feet for short periods which add up to more than two hours a day tend to have smaller waists and lower blood pressure.

They studied the habits of 4,757 adults over the course of a week.

Each participant wore an accelerometer, a small device fitted to the hip to measure how much time they spend walking and running.

Their waist size, blood ­pressure and the level of C-reactive protein in their blood, which is often high in people at risk of heart disease, were also measured.

So, get away from your desk for a little bit, make yourself cup of tea, have a quick conversation with your colleague - now you have a good reason to do it more often.

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With more and more of us getting less and less sleep, it’s tempting to reach for a Red Bull or an espresso when we feel sleepy at work. But consuming caffeine to combat sleepiness can lead to a vicious cycle.

Caffeine can reduce your sleep time, alter the normal stages of sleep, and decrease the quality of your sleep.

How can you stay awake naturally? Try some of these 12 jitter-free tips to take the edge off sleepiness.

1. Get Up and Move Around

Studies has shown that walking energizes you better than having a candy bar. Walking pumps oxygen through your veins, brains and muscles. If you work at a desk, get up frequently for short walks. At meal breaks, walk to a restaurant or, if you bring your lunch, head for a nice spot to eat it. Whether you take a walk outside or just in the building where you work, it will make you feel more alert and refreshed.

2. Take a Nap to Take the Edge Off Sleepiness

Two important rules to take note of: Don't take more than one and don't take it too close to your bedtime. It’s best to nap about six or seven hours before you would normally go to bed. If you must take a late nap close to bedtime, make it a short one.

Napping at work may be sensitive. If you need to nap at work, do it during your break and use a vibrating alarm clock, if necessary, to make sure it doesn’t spill over into your work time. Sleeping at your desk is usually not a good idea, but many companies now provide nap rooms for employees.

Studies has suggested that even a 10 minutes eye rest will help.

3. Give Your Eyes a Break to Avoid Fatigue

Continuous fixation on a computer screen can cause eyestrain and worsen sleepiness and fatigue. Look away from the screen for a few minutes periodically to relax your eyes.

4. Eat a Healthy Snack to Boost Energy

Have fresh fruits or an energy bar. Sugary snacks give you a quick energy boost followed by the sugar “lows,” when low blood sugar produces mental fogginess and lethargy.

5. Start a Conversation to Wake Your Mind Up

Engaging in a conversation can get your mind moving again. It help stimulates behavioural, especially if it is politics related.

6. Turn Up the Light to Ease Fatigue

Environments with dim lighting aggravate fatigue. Studies have shown that exposure to bright light can reduce sleepiness and increase alertness. Try increasing the intensity of your light source at work.

7. Take a Breather to Feel Alert

Deep breathing raises blood oxygen levels in the body. This slows your heart rate, lowers blood pressure, and improves circulation, ultimately aiding mental performance and energy.The idea of deep-breathing exercises is to inhale to the abdomen, not the chest.

8. Switch Tasks to Stimulate Your Mind

At work or home, try to reserve more stimulating tasks for your sleepy times. Or switch to more engaging work responsibilities when you feel yourself nodding off. Research has proven that monotonous work is as harmful as sleep loss for alertness.

9. Drink Water to Prevent Tiredness

Dehydration can cause fatigue. Make sure you drink plenty of fluids and eat foods high in water such as fruits and vegetables.

10. Get some daylight to Regulate Your Sleep Cycles

11. Exercise to Increase Energy and Reduce Fatigue

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Has your doctor said you have high cholesterol? Then you know you need to change your diet and lifestyle to lower cholesterol and your risk of heart disease. Even if your doctor prescribed a cholesterol drug to bring levels down, you'll still need to change your diet and become more active for cardiovascular health. These simple tips can help you keep cholesterol levels in check.

Cholesterol, Good and Bad
Your body needs a small amount of cholesterol to function properly. But we may get too much saturated fat and cholesterol in our diet -- and both raise levels of LDL "bad" cholesterol. LDL cholesterol can cause plaque to build up in arteries, leading to heart disease. HDL "good" cholesterol, on the other hand, helps clear bad cholesterol from your blood. You want to lower LDL cholesterol and raise HDL cholesterol, starting with your diet.

Portion Control: Eat in Moderation
Most Americans eat super-sized meals, with portions that are twice the size recommended for good health. That can contribute to weight gain and high cholesterol. Here's an easy way to practice portion control for a meal: Use your hand. One serving of meat or fish is about what fits in the palm of your hand. One serving of fresh fruit is about the size of your fist. And a serving of cooked vegetables, rice, or pasta should fit in your cupped hand.

Stock Up the Heart-Healthy Food
Load your plate with fruits and vegetables -- five to nine servings a day -- to help lower LDL "bad" cholesterol. Antioxidants in these foods may provide the benefit. Or it may be that when we eat more fruits and veggies, we eat less fatty foods. Either way, you'll also help lower blood pressure and maintain a healthy weight. Foods enriched with plant sterols, such as some margarine spreads, yogurts, and other foods, can also help lower LDL cholesterol.

Opt for Deep Sea Diet
A heart-healthy diet has fish on the menu twice a week. Why? Fish is low in saturated fat and high in healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids help lower levels of trigylcerides, a type of fat in the blood. They may also help lower cholesterol, slowing the growth of plaque in arteries. Go for fatty fish, such as salmon, tuna, trout, and sardines. Just don't drop the filets in the deep fryer – you'll negate the health benefits.

Start Your Day with Whole Grains
A bowl of oatmeal or whole-grain cereal has benefits that last all day. The fiber and complex carbohydrates in whole grains help you feel fuller for longer, so you'll be less tempted to overeat at lunch. They also help reduce LDL "bad" cholesterol and can be an important part of your weight loss strategy. Other examples of whole grains include wild rice, popcorn, brown rice, barley, and whole-wheat flour.

Go Nuts for Cardiovascular Health
Need a snack? A handful of nuts is a tasty treat that helps in lowering cholesterol. Nuts are high in monounsaturated fat, which lowers LDL "bad" cholesterol while leaving HDL "good" cholesterol intact. Several studies show that people who eat about an ounce of nuts a day have lower risk of heart disease. Nuts are high in fat and calories, so only eat a handful. And make sure they're not covered in sugar or chocolate.

Unsaturated Fats Protect the Heart
We all need a little fat in our diet – about 25% to 35% of our daily calories. But the type of fat matters. Unsaturated fats -- like those found in canola, olive, and safflower oils -- help lower LDL "bad" cholesterol levels and may help raise HDL "good" cholesterol. Saturated fats -- like those found in butter and palm oil -- and trans fats raise LDL cholesterol. Even good fats have calories, so eat in moderation.

Load the Beans and Unload the Potatoes
You need carbohydrates for energy, but some do your body more good than others. Whole grains, such as brown rice or quinoa, whole-wheat pasta, and beans have more fiber and raise sugar levels less. These help lower cholesterol and keep you feeling full longer. Other carbs, like those found in white bread, white potatoes, white rice, and pastries, boost blood sugar levels more quickly, leading you to feel hungry sooner, and may increase risk for overeating.

Let's Exercise!
Even 30 minutes of physical activity five days a week (20 minutes three times a week for vigorous exercise, such as jogging) can help lower LDL cholesterol and raise HDL cholesterol – although more exercise is even better. It also helps you maintain an ideal weight, reducing your chance of developing clogged arteries. You don't have to exercise for 30 minutes straight – you can break it up into 10-minute increments.

Walk it Off
If you're not used to exercising – or hate the thought of going to a gym – just go for a walk. It's easy, healthy, and all you need is a good pair of shoes. Aerobic or cardiovascular exercise such as walking lowers risk of stroke and heart disease, helps you lose weight, and keeps bones strong. If you're just starting out, try a 10-minute walk and gradually build up from there.

Take Control of Your Health
If you have high cholesterol, you and your doctor may be using a number of strategies to lower cholesterol levels. You may be working on your diet, losing weight, exercising more, and maybe taking cholesterol drugs. There are other actions you can take, too, to make sure you stay on the right track.

When You're Eating Out

If you're eating healthy food at home to keep cholesterol in check, don't blow it when you eat out. Restaurant food can be loaded with saturated fat, calories, and sodium. Even healthy choices may come in super-size portions. Try these tips to stay on track:

  • Choose broiled, baked, steamed, and grilled foods – not fried.
  • Get sauces on the side.
  • Practice portion control by asking for half your meal to be boxed up before it’s brought out.
Don't Stress Out
Chronic stress can raise blood pressure, adding to your risk of atherosclerosis, which occurs when plaque from cholesterol builds up in arteries. And research shows that for some people, stress might directly increase cholesterol levels. Reduce your stress levels with relaxation exercises, meditation, or biofeedback. Focus on your breathing and take deep, refreshing breaths. It's a simple stress-buster you can do anywhere.

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Omega-3, or commonly referred to as the "good fat" are essential. They are necessary for human health but our bodies can't create them. We have to get them through the food we eat.

Omega-3: The Good Fat

You may have been advised to reduce or eliminate all fat intake but not all fats are unhealthy. Omega-3 is rich in health benefits. Studies suggest they help lower the risk of heart disease, the nation’s top killer. They may also protect against symptoms of depression, dementia, cancer, and arthritis. Omega-3s are found in salmon, nuts, leafy greens, and more.

The Omega-3 Alphabet

Omega-3 fatty acids come in more than one form. The types found in fish, called DHA and EPA, appear to have the strongest health benefits. Another form known as ALA is found in vegetable oils, flaxseed, walnuts, and dark leafy vegetables such as spinach. The body converts a small amount of ALA into EPA and DHA, and ALA also has some health benefits of its own.

How They Fight Diseases

Omega-3 fatty acids are believed to help fight disease by reducing inflammation in the blood vessels, joints, and elsewhere in the body. They also decrease the risk for an abnormal heart rhythm, reduce levels of unhealthy fats in the bloodstream, and slow the rate of plaque build-up in the blood vessels. Our bodies can’t make omega-3s, so we must get them from our diet.

Omega-3 and Heart Attacks

If you’ve had a previous heart attack, omega-3 fatty acids may help lower the risk of death from heart disease. Studies show a reduction in heart attacks and sudden death among heart attack survivors who boost their levels of omega-3s. This includes people who take fish oil supplements and those who regularly eat fatty fish, such as salmon or lake trout.

Omega-3 and Arrhythmias

Omega-3s seem to have a stabilizing effect on the heart. They can lower heart rate and reduce the risk of life-threatening arrhythmias or abnormal heart rhythms. Several common sources of omega-3s are shown here: fish, walnuts, broccoli, and edamame, green soy beans that are often steamed and served in the pod.

Omega-3 and Triglycerides

Omega-3s can lower your level of triglycerides, a type of blood fat that’s linked to heart disease. Triglycerides collect in the bloodstream and in the body's fat cells (seen here). Unfortunately, omega-3s increase cholesterol – both the “good” (HDL) and “bad” (LDL) kind. People with high triglycerides should consult with their doctors before taking omega-3. Eating more omega-3-rich fish is generally safe.

Omega-3 and High Blood Pressure

There’s strong evidence that omega-3s lower blood pressure. The effect is small, though. If you have high blood pressure, eating fish could be helpful along with other dietary changes and medications, as recommended by your doctor. One strategy is to replace red meat with fish during some meals. But it’s best to avoid salty fish, such as smoked salmon.

Omega-3 and Stroke

The evidence is mixed on whether omega-3 can help prevent strokes. It curbs plaque build-up inside blood vessels and has anti-clotting effects, so it may help prevent ischemic strokes, the type caused by clots or a blockage in the arteries. At very high doses, omega-3 supplements might increase the risk of hemorrhagic strokes, the less common type that involves bleeding in the brain.

Omega-3 and Rheumatoid Arthritis

Studies suggest omega-3s can reduce symptoms such as joint pain and stiffness in people with rheumatoid arthritis. A diet high in omega-3s may also boost the effectiveness of anti-inflammatory drugs.

Omega-3 and Depression

Omega-3 fatty acids may help smooth out mood disorders and make antidepressants more effective. However, results of studies have been mixed so far. Countries with higher levels of omega-3 in the typical diet have lower levels of depression. Although more studies are needed, the evidence so far is promising.

Omega-3 and ADHD

Some studies suggest omega-3 supplements may ease the symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). We know omega-3 fatty acids are important in brain development and function. Although evidence isn’t conclusive and a diet supplement can’t offer a cure-all for ADHD, omega-3s may provide some added benefits to traditional treatment.

Omega-3 and Dementia

The jury is still out, but there’s some evidence that omega-3s may protect against dementia and improve mental function. In one study, older people with a diet high in omega-3 fatty acids had a lower risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease. More research is necessary to confirm the link.

Omega-3 and Cancer

Omega-3s may help reduce the risk of colon cancer, breast cancer, and advanced prostate cancer, but more research is needed. The American Cancer Society recommends a diet that includes fish, but the organization stops short of endorsing omega-3 supplements for cancer prevention.

The Catch of the Day

The best source of omega-3 fatty acids is fish, though some varieties deliver a higher dose than others. Top choices are salmon, mackerel, herring, lake trout, sardines, anchovies, and tuna. The American Heart Association recommends at least two servings a week of fish, which is 3.5 ounces of cooked fish or ¾ cup of flaked fish.

Omega-3 Supplements

If you don’t like fish, you can get omega-3 from supplements. One gram per day is the amount recommended for people with cardiovascular disease. At high levels, omega-3 can increase the risk of bleeding and may interfere with some medications. Fish oil also may deplete vitamin E, so some supplements include vitamin E. Be sure to consult your doctor before taking omega-3 supplements.

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As easy as ABC, here are the top foods you would rather invest on from today onwards.

1) Beans

They are a vegetable, a protein and a great source of fiber. They help you feel full for the amount of very few calories.

2) Fish

One of the best sources of protein is fish. Studies has proven that it is more satisfying than beef or chicken because of the type of proteins it contains. They contain a healthy form of fat known as Omega 3 fatty acids, easily found in salmon, herring and other fatty fish. Omega 3 fatty acids appear to help reduce risk of heart disease and other chronic conditions.

3) Lean Meat

Protein helps keep you feel longer and burn more calories during digestion. However choose your meat wisely, for example dark meats are high in fat. Opt for skinless chicken breast.

4) Skim Milk

It provides plenty of protein and calcium with none of the fat found in whole milk. It also can help you feel full as it takes longer to leave the stomach than most drinks with less protein.

5) Nuts

They are an excellent option to curb your hunger pangs in between meals. They are high in protein, fiber and heart healthy fats. Studies has shown that they can promote weight loss and improve cholesterol levels when eaten in moderation.

6) Vinegar

Studies suggest that vinegar may help the body break down fat, plus it has no calories!

7) Salad

Lettuce has plenty of water content to take up space in the stomach. That leaves less room for fattier foods that might come later in the meal. Make your salad interesting by adding a variety of fruits and vegetables or grated cheese. Opt for low fat organic dressings.

8) Oatmeal

Oatmeal has three things going for it: fiber-rich whole-grain oats, lots of water, and it's hot. Hot food takes longer to eat, and all that liquid and fiber will help you feel full longer.

9) Eggs

Studies suggest that eating protein in the morning will keep your hunger at bay longer than eating bagel or other carbs. You body will burn more calories digesting eggs than a carb-heavy breakfast. If you have high cholesterol, check with your doctor about how many eggs you can eat per week.

10) Sweet potatoes

This little food are packed with potassium, beta carotene, vitamin C and fiber.

11) Raw vegetables

Raw vegetables make an outstanding snack. They satisfy the desire to crunch, they're full of water to help you feel full, and they're low in calories.

12) Berries

They are high in water and fiber, which can keep you full longer. Blueberries stand out because they are easy to find and are loaded with antioxidants.

13) Watermelon

It is a rich source of the antioxidant lycopene as well as vitamins A and C.

14) Grapefruit

It contains plentiful amounts of soluble fiber, which take longer to digest. Having half a grapefruit or a glass of grapefruit juice before a meal may help fill you up, so you eat fewer calories during the meal.

15) Green tea

Green tea contains catechins, a type of phytochemical that may briefly affect the metabolism. Having your tea while it is hot is recommended, because it takes longer to drink, slowing your calorie intake and providing a soothing, mindful experience.

16) Cinnamon

They may have a stabilizing effect on blood sugar levels. This could curtail appetite, particularly in people with type 2 diabetes.

17) Quinoa

It's packed with nutrients such as iron, zinc, selenium, and vitamin E.

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According to researchers, exercising regularly for those with prostate cancer could cut the risk of dying from the disease by more than 50%.

A study of sufferers found physical activity was linked to a lower risk of dying prematurely from any cause, and in particular from the disease.

Researchers also found that men who did more vigorous activity had the lowest chance of dying from the disease – cutting the risk by 60 per cent.

Each year, nearly 218,000 American men are diagnosed with prostate cancer and more than 32,000 die from it.

The 18-year study by the Harvard School of Public Health and the University of California looked at 2,705 men diagnosed with the disease, with participants reporting how long they spent doing physical activity such as walking, running and swimming each week.

Both non-vigorous and vigorous activity were beneficial, according to an advance online edition of the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Compared with men who walked less than 90 minutes a week at an easy pace, those who walked 90 or more minutes at a normal to very brisk pace had a 46 per cent lower risk of dying from any cause. Only vigorous activity – more than three hours per week – was associated with reduced prostate cancer mortality.

Men who did vigorous activity had a 61 per cent lower risk of a prostate cancer-related death than men who did less than an hour of vigorous activity a week.

Consult your GPs before drastically changing your fitness regimes.

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The pancreas is called the "hidden organ" because it is located deep in the abdomen behind the stomach. The organ contains thin tubes that come together like the veins of a leaf. These tubes join to form a single opening into the intestine that is located just beyond the stomach.

The pancreas produces juices and enzymes that flow through these tubes into the intestine, where they mix with food. The enzymes digest fat, protein, and carbohydrates so they can be absorbed by the intestine. Pancreatic juices, therefore, play an important role in maintaining good health. The pancreas also produces insulin, which is picked up by the blood flowing through the organ. Insulin is important in regulating the amount of sugar or glucose in the blood.

What Are the Diseases of the Pancreas?

* Diabetes mellitus
* Acute pancreatitis
* Chronic pancreatitis
* Pancreatic enzyme deficiency
* Pancreas tumor

Diabetes Mellitus

Many cases of diabetes are caused by a deficiency of insulin. Insulin is needed to help glucose, which is a major source of energy, to enter the body's cells. It is not known why insulin-producing cells in the pancreas die off. When they fail to function, glucose accumulates in the blood and eventually exits through the urine. These patients require daily insulin injections. More importantly, high blood glucose levels, over time, result in significant changes in blood vessels in the eyes, kidneys, heart, legs, and nerves. Damage to these vital organs represents the major risk for patients with diabetes.

Other patients who develop diabetes later in life seem to have sufficient insulin in the pancreas, but for some unknown reason it is not available for the body's use. These patients typically are overweight and, therefore, weight loss is critical for them. In addition, oral medications can be taken that help release insulin from the pancreas. All diabetics need to maintain normal or near-normal blood glucose levels to prevent or delay the complications of this disease.

Acute Pancreatitis

This condition occurs when the pancreas becomes quickly and severely inflamed. The major causes are:

* Heavy alcohol ingestion
* Gallstones or gallbladder disease
* Trauma
* Drugs
* High blood fats (triglycerides)
* Heredity
* Unknown factors

Binge alcohol drinking is a common cause of acute pancreatitis. Gallbladder disease, especially where a gallstone becomes lodged in the main bile duct next to the pancreas, also causes this condition. Accidents, such as the upper abdomen hitting the steering wheel during a car accident, can cause pancreatitis. Certain drugs, such as diuretics, can produce the disorder as can extremely high blood fat levels (triglycerides). Heredity seems to play a role since in some families the condition develops in several members of the family. Finally, there are the occasional cases that occur for unknown reasons. In pancreatitis, the digestive enzymes of the pancreas break out into the tissues of the organ rather than staying within the tubes (ducts). Severe damage to the pancreas then results.

Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment

The main symptoms of pancreatitis are acute, severe pain in the upper abdomen, frequently accompanied by vomiting and fever. The abdomen is tender, and the patient feels and looks ill. The diagnosis is made by measuring the blood pancreas enzymes which are elevated. A sound wave test (ultrasound) or abdominal CT exam often shows an enlarged pancreas. The condition is treated by resting the pancreas while the tissues heal. This is accomplished through bowel rest, hospitalization, intravenous feeding and, pain medications.

When pancreatitis is caused by gallstones, it is necessary to remove the gallbladder. This is usually done after the acute pancreatitis has resolved. At times, an ERCP (Endoscopic Retrograde CholangioPancreatography) test is recommended. This involves passing a flexible tube through the mouth and down to the small intestine. A small catheter is then inserted into the bile duct to see if any stones are present. If so, they are then removed with the scope.

Course and Outcome

Most patients with this condition recover well, although a few, especially those who have alcohol-induced pancreatitis, may become desperately sick. When recovered, the patient needs to make life-style changes to prevent a recurrence. For example, avoiding alcohol and drugs, reducing blood triglycerides, or having gallbladder surgery.

Chronic Pancreatitis

This condition occurs mostly in alcoholics or people who repeatedly binge drink alcohol. The main symptoms are recurrent, dull, or moderate pain without the severe toxic features of acute pancreatitis. Treatment consists of rest, medication, and certain food restrictions. Alcohol consumption is absolutely prohibited. However, in cases where damage is extensive, chronic pancreatitis and pain can occur even when alcohol consumption has stopped.

Diagnosis of this condition is made by measuring blood enzymes and by performing abdominal CT, x-rays, and ultrasound exams. An ERCP endoscopic test is often performed. In this test, a flexible endoscope is passed through the mouth into the intestine while the patient is lightly sedated. A small plastic catheter is inserted into the pancreas ducts and an x-ray dye is injected. The internal anatomy of the pancreas can then be viewed by x-ray.

Occasionally a problem develops when the patient becomes dependent on, or even addicted to, narcotic pain medicines used to control symptoms. In some cases, surgery is recommended to provide relief of pain.

Pancreas Enzyme Insufficiency

Digestive enzymes from the pancreas are necessary to break down protein, fat, and carbohydrates in foods that are ingested. When there is a deficiency of these enzymes, nutrients are not broken down, resulting in malnutrition and weight loss. This condition is called malabsorption because the intestine is unable to absorb these vital nutrients.

The two major symptoms are diarrhea (frequently with fat droplets in the stool) and weight loss. This condition can result from any cause of pancreatitis, including trauma and infection. Pancreatic enzymes can be taken by mouth to replace those that are no longer made by the pancreas.

Pancreatic Tumors

The pancreas, like most organs of the body, can develop tumors. Some of these are benign and cause no problems. However, some benign tumors can secrete hormones which, when present in high levels, have a detrimental effect. For example, insulin can be secreted in excessive amounts and result in dangerously low blood sugar levels (hypoglycemia). Another hormone, gastrin, can stimulate the stomach to secrete its strong hydrochloric acid causing recurrent stomach and peptic ulcers, with many complications. Fortunately, there is much that can be done about these tumors.

Cancer of the pancreas is a serious malignancy which is difficult to treat. The disorder occurs in middle- or older-aged people, with the first symptom often being dull pain in the upper abdomen that may radiate into the back. At times, skin jaundice occurs when the bile duct, which carries yellow bile from the liver and through the pancreas, is blocked. Surgery is the only effective form of treatment for pancreas cancer.

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What you don’t know can hurt you. Arthritis can strike anyone at any time and although researchers don’t know what causes arthritis, with early diagnosis and treatment therapies you can still enjoy an active lifestyle.

Arthritis is a generic word that represents over 100 rheumatic diseases including: osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, gout, fibromyalgia, tendonitis, and lupus.

The focus here will be on osteo- and rheumatoid arthritis.


The most common type of arthritis, osteoarthritis (OA) affects one in 10 Canadians. Generally it appears in adults over the age of 45. OA is usually found in weight-bearing joints (hips, knees, spine, and feet) and in the hands.

The disease is characterized by thinning of the cartilage and thickening of the bone underneath. Over time the cartilage breaks down, and the ends of the bone become rough and may develop spurs.

Symptoms of OA include joint pain and stiffening. Swelling may develop, and a loss of range of motion in the joint may be experienced.

Rheumatoid arthritis

In rheumatoid arthritis (RA) the body’s immune system attacks healthy joints, causing inflammation in the joint linings. The result is erosion of cartilage, bone, tendons, and ligaments in the area around the joint. RA sufferers may develop disabilities such as difficulty walking or using hands for routine activities such as dressing.

RA is most common in adults from 25 to 50, but can appear in anyone—from infants to the elderly. RA can affect any of the joints in the body as well as tissues and organs.

Usually RA strikes symmetrically, so if you experience pain in your right wrist, you’ll also feel it in your left. Unlike OA, which can affect both men and women in the same ratio, RA affects two to three times more women than men.

Apart from joint pain, RA symptoms vary for each person. You may experience flu-like symptoms, periods of flare-up and remission, or continual progression of the disease. Early diagnosis of RA is important to minimize damage and the risk of disability.

Promote Quality of Life

Develop a plan
Working with your health care practitioner, you can contrive a strategy for minimizing pain and maximizing mobility like holistic therapies.

For both types of arthritis, exercise has been shown to improve quality of life.
If you enjoy an exercise you are more likely to do it regularly and reap the benefits, such as weight management, increased energy, and better sleep.

Gyms offer treadmills, stationary bikes, and elliptical trainers. Therapeutic pools have the benefit of heat in addition to the buoyancy of water and offer aerobic conditioning for people with arthritis.

Holistic and complementary therapies
These therapies are based on the concept of energy flow (often referred to as chi) through the body. A block in the flow of this energy creates an imbalance. Over time this causes a breakdown in the physical body, resulting in an illness.

If you experience any pain or inflammation prior to or during your treatment or exercise routine, refrain until you consult your health care practitioner.

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Headaches come in different sorts-- migraines, tension headaches, sinus headaches -- but regardless of the type, it can be a weakening and extremely annoying condition. A majority of headache sufferers have them that can be labeled as tension headaches. Through the years, many theories have surrounded the cause of these headaches. The name comes from the fact that tension in the muscles of the neck can cause significant pain in the head, but tension in the form of stress can certainly contribute to this common cause of headache. Besides using traditional anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving medications (like Vicodin) , there are also other ways to reduce tension in your life so these headaches become a thing of the past.

Close Your Eyes and Just Relax

The first thing to do is relax. It may be easier said than done, but it is a skill that our society has lost over time. We are assailed with activities and responsibilities, but we are rarely presented with opportunities to calm ourselves and learn to manage stress. Relaxation begins with determining those things that make us feel good. It may simple be watching a television program, listening to our favorite musical album, or going for a nice walk in the park. Other things you can do to relax include making healthy food choices, finding a quiet spot into which you can retreat if things get overwhelming, exercising, avoid doing activities that make you feel guilty, and have a laugh with your friends and families. Whatever it is, taking time for yourself will reduce the effects of the stresses in your life.

Breathe In, Breathe Out

Breathing goes hand in hand with relaxation. Sure, breathing is automatic, that’s the beauty of it, right? Well, it is automatic, but it is also an activity over which you have an immense amount of control. Ayurvedic practitioners and yogis will tell you that since it is the only activity that you can perform both voluntarily and automatically breathing is a perfect way to access the subconscious, and to gain control over processes commonly thought of as “out of reach.” Whether or not you are looking for a window to the subconscious, proper breathing promotes relaxation and is a powerful tool for dealing with pain.

Pranayama, or yogic breathing, is a good way to learn to breathe. Begin by sitting quietly without any distractions. Take a nice, slow, continuous breath in through your nose. Hold it for a few seconds without making any other movements. Then slowly exhale through your mouth. Again, like during inhalation, your exhalation should be smooth and continuous. Once you’ve exhaled, take a short, deliberate pause before starting the cycle again. It sounds simple, but even simple tactics can help you deal with tension headaches.

During this whole process, you want to focus on how the air is entering your lungs and then exiting. That is all you need to think about -- breathing in and breathing out. Once you’ve really begun to visualize the path the air is taking you want to “direct” the breath to areas of pain. Imagine the breath going into your lungs and then heading to your temples or forehead, wherever you’re hurting. Then picture the breath drawing the pain away and out through your exhaled air. This routine requires a lot of practice, but one that can be immensely helpful.

Stress No More

Finally, learn to stop stress before it starts. Plan ahead for situations you can anticipate; take a short walk before a meeting at work you think may be a tough one; take a few deep breaths before entering into a heated discussion (or better yet, try to avoid the heated discussions whenever you are able). Prioritize your to-do list into categories like “must be done” and “can wait a day or two.”Others have suggested using the “choose three things” approach. Select three things you will do on a particular day and do them. If you get to other things, that’s great, but at least make an effort on the three you’ve chosen. Recognize what are true necessities and what are only essential because you’ve placed undue pressure on yourself.

Stress happens and we can do little to eliminate it completely from our lives. But we can certainly learn to cope with the pressures of life, and in time, implement effective relaxation strategies that will reduce the amount of tension we experience and hopefully deal with headaches.

India Herbs - Ancient Remedies for Modern Times