What to do, When you have Diabetes : Living well with Diabetes

Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, Larry King, Sonam Kapoor and Kamal Hassan has it and are thriving.

Diagnosed with Diabetes….need to worry.  Diabetes leads to shorter life span, increase the cost of medical care, many a times lead to permanent physical disability, and loss of independence. At the same time do not fret, you are one among 425 million from around the world. Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, Larry King, Sonam Kapoor and Kamal Hassan  has it and are thriving. This disease, though chronic, can be kept under control by bringing in changes in lifestyle and food habits. But before heading straight to making corrections in lifestyle, understand the basics of this disease so that you can LIVE HAPPILY WITH IT.

Why we must not take Diabetes lightly

Having diabetes does not mean just take a shot of insulin or pills and live carefree. At first, doctors did think that exogenous insulin or drugs would solve all the problems of diabetes. As people began to live longer with diabetes they understood that administration of insulin or drug cannot completely correct the diabetic state.

Diabetes associated with cerebro-vascular disease and diabetes associated with amputations are two of the most frequently reported conditions requiring assistance with daily living. Diabetes is the leading cause of new blindness and kidney failure in adults. People with diabetes are twice as likely as members of the general population to have heart disease. Pregnant women with diabetes require intensive prenatal care, and their babies are five times more likely to require intensive perinatal care.

Understanding diabetes: The first step towards managing it

What Is Diabetes?

What Is Diabetes?

Diabetes is a disease in which the pancreas fails to produce enough insulin to support normal food metabolism. Understanding diabetes: The first step towards managing it

There are two main types of diabetes: Type I, also known as insulin-dependent diabetes, and Type II, non-insulin-dependent diabetes. Type II is the most common one.

World Diabetes Day is celebrated on  November 14, the birthday of Sir Frederick Banting, one of the men credited with discovering insulin.

Although diabetes cannot be cured, it can be managed successfully. Diabetes management means keeping under control  blood glucose, blood pressure and blood fats levels. Good control is very important to avoid long-term complications 

Disease management starts with :

Blood Sugar Monitoring: The first step to Diabetes management

Many elements are important in managing diabetes on a daily basis, but blood sugar management is the most essential one. It helps in

  • Determining whether treatment plan is working
  • Understanding how diet and exercise affect blood sugar levels
  • Understanding the impact of other illness or stress on blood sugar levels 
  • Leading a life without worrying about disease

Create Personalized Diabetes Eating Plan

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Killer disease on Loose: India grappling with Tuberculosis

Image: Tuberculosis spread across countries recreated using R and Google graphs based on data from Worldhealthexpectancy.com

Even though Tuberculosis is preventable and treatable, it remains the world’s deadliest infectious disease. India has the highest burden of Tuberculosis in the world. In 2015 alone, 2.8 million cases of TB was reported and 480,000 people died from it. India had 130,000 multi-drug resistant TB patients in 2015, the highest in the world. 60 percent of the total number of Tuberculosis cases comes from six countries and India is on top followed by Indonesia, China, Nigeria, Pakistan and South Africa. 40% of India’s population, which accounts to around 50 crore, have Latent Tuberculosis. Latent TB infection means a person have infectious agent present in him, but would not show any evidence of active disease as long as his immunity stays strong!.

In a TED Talk on ‘India’s Tuberculosis crisis’, Zarir F Udwadia, a leading expert on TB and chest physician at the Hinduja Hospital & Research Centre, Mumbai, called it, “Ebola with wings.”….. 

The situation at this moment in India looks grim as number of patients with multi-drug resistant TB and extensively drug-resistant TB is on rise.

The situation at this moment in India looks grim as number of patients with multi-drug resistant TB and extensively drug-resistant TB is on rise. As per latest report almost one in five cases of TB  shows resistance to at least one major anti-TB drug.

What is Tuberculosis ?

Tuberculosis is an infectious disease caused by Mycobacterium tuberculosis that affects the lungs. It can also spread to other parts of the body, like the brain and spine. Mycobacterium is an airborne pathogen, hence TB can spread through the air from person to person.

There are two forms of the disease:

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Do you need Selenium supplements ?

Selenium deficiency can impair immune function, increase incidence of cancer, cardiovascular and other degenerative diseases as well as overall mortality.

Selenium in human Health and Disease

Selenium is an essential micronutrient found in Brazil nuts, chicken, fish, turkey, crab, nuts, cereal and eggs. Selenium is an “essential nutrient”, meaning our bodies cannot make it, and so we have to get it from our diet. Without it the heart, joints, eyes, immune system and reproductive system can suffer.  We require 55 micrograms of selenium to maintain proper health and this selenium we must obtain through dietary sources.

What is Selenium

Selenium is a non-metal element that occurs in the earth’s crust. Selenium is necessary in the body’s production of selenoproteins.  There are around 25 selenoproteins in humans and many of these are enzymes that act to protect the body against oxidative damage. Since the ageing process, as well as certain diseases, including cancer and cardiovascular disease, is associated with an increase in oxidative damage, maintaining adequate selenium intakes may provide some protection against these processes.

Where is Selenium found

Seafood and organ meats are rich in selenium.

Plants pick up selenium from soil. The selenium content in plant foods depends on the concentration of selenium in the soil where the plants grow.  Seafood and organ meats are rich in selenium. Other foods that have selenium include muscle meats, grains and dairy products. It can also be found in drinking water in some places.

Why selenium levels are low in some people

People living in places where the soil is selenium deficient have low selenium levels. People who smoke cigarettes or drink alcohol often are more likely to have selenium deficiency. Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, or other conditions that interfere with how the body absorbs selenium can lead to low selenium levels. Kidney dialysis patients may also become low in selenium. The chemotherapy drug cisplatin can lower selenium levels in the blood, but it is not known if cisplatin can lead to a significant deficiencies.

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Probiotic, Prebiotic and Synbiotics. Do we know what exactly are they?

Try out Probiotic, Prebiotic  and Synbiotics for good Gut Health

My previous post was all about ‘Good Bacteria‘ and the role they play in maintaining a healthy life. Some researchers believe that up to 90 percent of all diseases can be traced in some way back to the gut and health of the microbiome. Poor gut health can contribute to leaky gut syndrome and autoimmune diseases and disorders like arthritis, dementia, heart disease, and cancer.
So it’s understood that good health begins in the gut while poor gut function, due to an imbalance of gut bacteria, can lay us open to digestive disorders and a host of other health problems.

So how can we make our Gut to stay healthy ?

“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food” – Hippocrates

Answer is Try out Probiotic, Prebiotic  and Synbiotics

The health benefits imparted by probiotics and prebiotics as well as synbiotics have been the subject of extensive research in the past few decades. These food supplements termed as functional foods have been demonstrated to alter, modify and reinstate the pre-existing intestinal flora. Functional foods also provide the body with required amount of vitamins, fats, proteins and carbohydrates.

Probiotics:

“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food” – Hippocrates

The term Probiotics is derived from a Greek word meaning “for life”. Probiotics have been defined as live microorganisms which when administered in adequate amounts confer a health benefit on the host. The concept of probiotics evolved at the turn of the 20th century from a hypothesis first proposed by Nobel Prize winning Russian scientist Elie Metchnikoff.

Benefits of Probiotics:

  • Provide a natural defense or immune system for body
  • Prevent growth of harmful bacteria
  • Strengthen immune system towards allergies and other autoimmune diseases
  • Help body to produce vitamins
  • Support healthy digestion
  • Increase defecation and reduce constipation
  • Help control the illness-causing bacteria in intestinal tract
  • Reduce cholesterol level
  • Reduce blood pressure
  • Improve body’s absorption of minerals, especially calcium
  • Decrease dental-caries-causing microbes in mouth
  • Prevent diarrhea after having treatment with certain antibiotics
  • Prevent diarrhea caused by virus or Salmonella
  • Manage the signs and symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • Reduce amounts of cancer-causing substances in your intestine

Probiotics food

Yogurt is the most common source of probiotics

Miso, Cheese, Kefir , Sauerkraut, Pickles, Chocolate, Tofu, Tempeh

Prebiotics:

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Friends who live in our Gut: Gut Microbiota

Healthy adult humans each typically harbor more than 1000 species of bacteria

Most people consider microbes as germs, but truth is trillions of microbes that live in our gut execute many functional roles – aid in digestion, keep  a check on infectious agents,  boost immunity, synthesize many vitamins, play a key role in maintaining Hormone balance and Brain function.

So they are for sure our ‘Friends’

“Taking into account the major role gut microbiota plays in the normal functioning of the body and the different functions it accomplishes, experts nowadays consider it as an “organ

Quick facts about our ‘Friends’ Microbiota

  • Healthy adult humans each typically harbor more than 1000 species of bacteria 
  • Microbiota can, in total, weigh up to 2 kg
  • ‘Gut feelings’ indeed seems to be a true phrase as researchers have found connection between gut microbiome and human behavior and emotion
  • Two thirds of the gut microbiome is unique to each person, and what makes this unique is the food we eat, the air we breathe and other environmental factors.
  •  The initial composition of the gut microbiota depends on the mode of delivery: babies delivered vaginally harbour gut microbiota resembling microbial communities found in their mothers’ vaginas, whereas those born via Cesarean section apparently acquire microbes from the skin, dominated by taxa such as Propionibacterium and Staphylococcus
  • Formula fed babies have less of good microbes compared to breast fed babies, giving them a healthier edge over the other.  Gut of breastfed babies primarily consists of Bifidobacteria – considered a “friendly” bacteria that benefits the gut
  •  Infants with less diverse gut bacteria at the age of 3 months were more likely to be prone to food allergies
  • By the age of 3, microbiota becomes stable and similar to that of adults, continuing its evolution at a steadier rate throughout life
  • Researchers have found a certain strain of bacteria – Christensenellaceae minuta – that cause the animals to gain less weight, indicating the bacteria could be used to reduce or prevent obesity 
  • The predominant bacterial groups in the microbiome are gram positive Firmicutes and gram negative Bacteroidetes
  • People treated with prolonged courses of antibiotics that kill a wide spectrum of bacteria can develop life-threatening diarrhoea due to an overgrowth of Clostridium difficile

Microbiome and Disease state

Some researchers believe that up to 90 percent of all diseases can be traced in some way back to the gut and health of the microbiome : image

Each of us have a complex ecosystem of bacteria located within our gut and we call them microbiome or gut microbiota. The vast majority of the bacterial species that make up our microbiome live in our digestive systems. Some researchers believe that up to 90 percent of all diseases can be traced in some way back to the gut and health of the microbiome.  Poor gut health can contribute to leaky gut syndrome and autoimmune diseases and disorders like arthritis, dementia, heart disease, and cancer.

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Did you know that what’s going on in your Gut could affect your Brain

“Brain that stays in Gut” is giving a new dimension to our understanding of digestion, mood, health and disease onset.

Why do we stop eating food when we are full ?

Why do we feel sick or get vomiting sensation on the morning of an important exam ?

Stressed or Anxious, one feel butterflies in stomach. Feeling nervous or going through nerve wrenching moment, stomach growls and rumbles. Well – thoughts happen in brain, but stomach acts. The gastrointestinal tract is sensitive to emotion.  Anger, anxiety, sadness, elation — all of these feelings  can trigger symptoms in the gut. It’s  just not the troubled brain can send signals to the gut, but gut too sends signal back to brain. Scientists were shocked to learn that about 90 percent of the fibers in the primary visceral nerve, the vagus, carry information from the gut to the brain and not the other way around. Vagus nerve, originates with the dorsal motor nucleus in the medulla and extends through the abdomen to the viscera.

Gut Our Second Brain

Gut Our Second Brain

Our Gut has its own branch of the nervous system called the enteric nervous system that can function on its own, even if it is disconnected from the brain. The enteric nervous system, the second brain consists of sheaths of neurons embedded in the walls of the long tube of our gut.  The second brain contains some 100 million neurons, more than in either the spinal cord or the peripheral nervous system. It actually arises from the same tissues as our central nervous system (CNS) during fetal development.  The ENS supervises the processes of digestion and stays in close contact with, and is heavily influenced by, the central nervous system (the CNS) which comprises the brain and spinal cord. The ENS and CNS also use many of the same chemical messengers or neurotransmitters including acetylcholine and serotonin.

 “Brain that stays in Gut” is giving a new dimension to our understanding of digestion, mood, health and disease onset. 

” Our two brains — the one in our head and the one in our bowel — must cooperate. If they do not, then there is chaos in the gut and misery in the head — everything from “butterflies” to cramps, from diarrhea to constipation.”–  Dr. Michael Gershon

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The healing power of Menstrual blood: it’s no longer a curse !

So ‘those 5 days’ are no longer a curse but life giving !!!!. Women be Proud

 

Did you knew that Stem cells in menstrual blood have similar properties as the stem cells in Umbilical cord blood and Bone marrow.

So ‘those 5 days’ are no longer a curse but life giving !!!!. Women be Proud

Periods which people around looked down can turn into a boon to you and your genetically related family members.

Though everyone knows (I like to believe) that Menstruation stands for a healthy status, bleeding every month down yonder is considered as a dirty stuff by large number of population, both men and women.

So now stand up and say, that this ‘dirty stuff’ can be a ‘life saver’ for your family.

Researchers have found that uterine lining, or endometrium, is a rich source of adult stem cells.  Adult stem cells from menstrual blood were capable of differentiating into 9 lineages: cardiomyocytic, respiratory epithelial, neurocytic, myocytic, endothelial, pancreatic, hepatic, adipocytic, and osteogenic.

Researchers have found that uterine lining, or endometrium, is a rich source of adult stem cells

Benefits:

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Hair loss: every man’s nightmare

 

We are going to see more bald men around us. Not a happy news.

Men are turning bald as early as in their 20s. This is definitely was not the case in our father’s generation where men in 40s walked around with a full crop of hair . About 85% of men will have major hair thinning by the time they’re  50. Some guys will start to lose theirs before they turn even 21.

Different ethnic groups show varying susceptibility levels to pattern baldness. Chinese, blacks and Native Americans are more likely to keep a full head of hair than whites.

Four main reasons that makes hair fall rate so bad: stress, bad habits, pollution and poor nutrition

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‘Go Blue!’ to Fight Prostate Cancer

About one man in six will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during his lifetime

Prostate cancer only affects men. This cancer begins to grow in the prostate – a male reproductive organ.  After the Testis (the male reproductive organs), Prostate is the second most important gland for proper male sexual functioning. This is a small gland that sits below the bladder near the rectum.  It produces most of the fluid that makes up semen that enriches sperm.

prostate gland : image

Prostate cancer facts

  • About one man in six will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during his lifetime, and one man in 36 will die of this disease
  • Prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer related deaths in men
  • About 6 cases in 10 are diagnosed in men 65 years or older
  • Prostate cancer often has no early symptoms, means people are not aware of the disease at early stages
  • Prostate cancer  spreads, to the bones in nine out of 10 fatal cases
  • Advanced prostate cancer can cause men to urinate more often or have a weaker flow of urine
  • Most men diagnosed with prostate cancer do not die from it
  • The older the patient, especially if they are over 70, the less aggressive the disease usually behaves
  • Several studies have indicated that perhaps about 80% of all men in their eighties had prostate cancer when they died, but not even the doctor knew
  • Scientists have found a chemical linked to depression to prevent prostate cancer invasion to the bones
  • Prostate cancer treatment includes surgery, chemotherapy, cryotherapy, hormonal therapy and radiation
  • Prostate cancer treatments, like radiation and hormone therapy  can affect your sex life

Many famous celebrities have been diagnosed with prostate cancer

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Improve oral health and Rediscover your Smile

We are amidst a global oral disease epidemic. Nearly 100 percent of adults have had cavities

Oral health is an important contributor to overall health and well-being. Oral health touches every aspect of our lives.  Oral health means more than just healthy teeth- it includes the health of the gums, oral soft tissues, chewing muscles, the palate, tongue, lips and salivary glands. Good oral health enables an individual to speak, eat and socialize without active disease, discomfort or embarrassment. It is integral to general health and well-being.

We are amidst a global oral disease epidemic, and the statistics are startling: nearly 100 percent of adults have had cavities.

Oral disease is one of the most common public health issues worldwide with significant socio-economic impacts. Oral health is affected on a daily basis by various forms of oral diseases, mainly dental caries and periodontal disease, and occasionally by oral cancer, lesions in HIV/AIDS, mucosal and salivary gland diseases, and orofacial pain and clefts. These oral disorders are collectively the commonest chronic diseases in mankind with great impacts on vita functions, self-esteem, quality of life.

It is currently recognized that oral diseases are worldwide epidemic and a major public health problem.

The facts on Oral health are disturbing : based on WHO 

  • Worldwide, 60–90% of school children and nearly 100% of adults have dental cavities
  • Globally, about 30% of people aged 65–74 have no natural teeth
  • 16-40% of children in the age range 6 to12 years old are affected by dental trauma due to unsafe playgrounds, unsafe schools, road accidents, or violence
  • In young children, there is a relationship between dental caries and childhood obesity
  • Dental caries, also known as tooth decay or cavities, is one of the most prevalent chronic diseases in humans
  • Dental cavities and periodontal disease are major causes of tooth loss
  • Birth defects such as cleft lip and palate occur in about one per 500–700 of all births.
  • Severe periodontal (gum) disease, which may result in tooth loss, is found in 15–20% of middle-aged (35-44 years) adults
  • Oral cancer is the eighth most common cancer globally
  • Oral disease in children and adults is higher among poor and disadvantaged population groups
  • Almost half (40–50%) of people who are HIV-positive have oral fungal, bacterial or viral infections
  • Because of the high prevalence and recurrent cumulative nature of caries and periodontal disease, the mouth is among the most expensive parts of the body to treat in some countries such as Japan, Australia and Germany
  • Several oral diseases are linked to non-communicable chronic diseases or conditions that share common risk factors, such as diabetes, obesity, cancer, cardiovascular disease
  • With the growing consumption of sugar in the developing world as a result of westernization, the levels of dental decay are likely to rise

Impact of lifestyle on Oral Health:

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