Sunday, December 14, 2014

An Interview with Dr. Devi Shetty, one of the most renowned Heart surgeons in India today and a world class cardiologist

Question: What are the thumb rules for a layman to take care of his heart? 
1. Diet - Less of carbohydrate, more of protein, less oil
2. Exercise - Half an hour's walk, at least five days a week; avoid lifts and avoid sitting for a longtime
3. Quit smoking
4. Control weight
5. Control blood pressure and sugar 

Question: Is eating non-veg food (fish) good for the heart? 
Answer: No 

Question: It's still a grave shock to hear that some apparently healthy person gets a cardiac arrest.. How do we understand it in perspective? 
Answer: This is called silent attack; that is why we recommend everyone past the age of 30 to undergo routine health checkups. 

Question: Are heart diseases hereditary? 
Answer: Yes.

Question: What are the ways in which the heart is stressed? What practices do you suggest to de-stress? 
Answer: Change your attitude towards life. Do not look for perfection in everything in life. 

Question: Is walking better than jogging or is more intensive exercise required to keep a healthy heart? 
Answer: Walking is better than jogging since jogging leads to early fatigue and injury to joints 

Question: You have done so much for the poor and needy. What has inspired you to do so? 
Answer: Mother Theresa , who was my patient.

Question: Can people with low blood pressure suffer heart diseases? 
Answer: Extremely rare.

Question: Does cholesterol accumulates right from an early age
(I'm currently only 22) or do you have to worry about it only after you are above 30 years of age? 
Answer: Cholesterol accumulates from childhood. 

Question: How do irregular eating habits affect the heart ? 
Answer: You tend to eat junk food when the habits are irregular and your body's enzyme release for digestion gets confused. 

Question: How can I control cholesterol content without using medicines? 
Answer: Control diet, walk and eat walnut. 

Question: Can yoga prevent heart ailments? 
Answer: Yoga helps. 

Question: Which is the best and worst food for the heart? 
Answer: Fruits and vegetables are the best and the worst is oil. 

Question: Which oil is better - groundnut, sunflower, olive? 
Answer: All oils are bad. 

Question: What is the routine checkup one should go through? Is there any specific test? 
Answer: Routine blood test to ensure sugar, cholesterol is ok. Check BP, Treadmill test after an echo. 

Question: What are the first aid steps to be taken on a heart attack? 
Answer: Help the person into a sleeping position , place an aspirin tablet under the tongue with a sorbitrate tablet if available, and rush him to a coronary care unit since the maximum casualty takes place within the first hour. 

Question: How do you differentiate between pain caused by a heart attack and that caused due to gastric trouble? 
Answer: Extremely difficult without ECG. 

Question: What is the main cause of a steep increase in heart problems amongst youngsters? I see people of about 30-40 yrs of age having heart attacks and serious heart problems. 
Answer: Increased awareness has increased incidents.. Also, sedentary lifestyles, smoking, junk food, lack of exercise in a country where people are genetically three times more vulnerable for heart attacks than Europeans and Americans. 

Question: Is it possible for a person to have BP outside the normal range of 120/80 and yet be perfectly healthy? 
Answer: Yes. 

Question: Marriages within close relatives can lead to heart problems for the child. Is it true? 
Answer: Yes, co-sanguinity leads to congenital abnormalities and you may not have a software engineer as a child.

Question: Many of us have an irregular daily routine and many a times we have to stay late nights in office. Does this affect our heart ? What precautions would you recommend? 
Answer: When you are young, nature protects you against all these irregularities. However, as you grow older, respect the biological clock. 

Question: Will taking anti-hypertensive drugs cause some other complications (short / long term)? 
Answer: Yes, most drugs have some side effects. However, modern anti- hypertensive drugs are extremely safe. 

Question: Will consuming more coffee/tea lead to heart attacks? 
Answer: No. 

Question: Are asthma patients more prone to heart disease? 
Answer: No. 

Question: How would you define junk food? 
Answer: Fried food like Kentucky , McDonalds , samosas, and even masala dosas.. 

Question: Does consuming bananas help reduce hypertension? 
Answer: No. 

Question: Can a person help himself during a heart attack (Because we see a lot of forwarded emails on this)? 
Answer: Yes. Lie down comfortably and put an aspirin tablet of any description under the tongue and ask someone to take you to the nearest coronary care unit without any delay and do not wait for the ambulance since it may not turn up or just not turn up in time.

Question: Do, in any way, low white blood cells and low hemoglobin count lead to heart problems? 
Answer: No. But it is ideal to have normal hemoglobin level to increase your exercise capacity. 

Question: Sometimes, due to the hectic schedule we are not able to exercise. So, does walking while doing daily chores at home or climbing the stairs in the house, work as a substitute for exercise?

Answer: Certainly. Avoid sitting continuously for more than half an hour and even the act of getting out of the chair and going to another chair and sitting helps a lot. 

Question: Is there a relation between heart problems and blood sugar? 
Answer: Yes. A strong relationship since diabetics are more vulnerable to heart attacks than non-diabetics. 

Question: What are the things one needs to take care of after a heart operation? 
Answer: Diet, exercise, drugs on time, Control cholesterol, BP, weight. 

Question: Are people working on night shifts more vulnerable to heart disease when compared to day shift workers? 
Answer: No. 

Question: What are the modern anti- hypertensive drugs? 
Answer: There are hundreds of drugs and your doctor will choose the right combination for your problem, but my suggestion is to avoid the drugs and go for natural ways of controlling blood pressure by walk, diet to reduce weight and changing attitudes and lifestyles. 

Question: Does dispirin or similar headache pills increase the risk of heart attacks? 
Answer: No. 

Question: Why is the rate of heart attacks more in men than in women? 
Answer: Nature protects women till the age of 45. 

Question: How can one keep the heart in a good condition? 
Answer: Eat a healthy diet, avoid junk food, exercise everyday, do not smoke and, go for health checkups if you are past the age of 30 (once in six months recommended). 

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Why Your Blood Pressure Readings May Be Wrong

One of the most dangerous things assaults on your health is to measure your blood pressure and get the results wrong.

You may think your blood pressure is okay and do nothing. Or you may be stressed out thinking your blood pressure is way too high when it is indeed normal or a little over normal (this stress can actually cause high blood pressure).
And there is one aspect of modern technology that actually provides you with this false information. So avoid this technology at all cost.......CLICK HERE to read the whole article.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Benefits of Walking

  • The human body is made to walk.
  • Walking 30 minutes a day cuts the rate of people becoming diabetic by more than half and it cuts the risk of people over 60 becoming diabetic by almost 70 percent.
  • Walking cuts the risk of stroke by more than 25 percent.
  • Walking reduces hypertension. The body has over 100,000 miles of blood vessels. Those blood vessels are more supple and healthier when we walk.
  • Walking cuts the risk of cancer as well as diabetes and stroke.
  • Women who walk have a 20 percent lower likelihood of getting breast cancer and a 31 percent lower risk of getting colon cancer.
  • Women with breast cancer who walk regularly can reduce their recurrence rate and their mortality rate by over 50 percent.
  • The human body works better when we walk. The body resists diseases better when wewalk, and the body heals faster when we walk.
  • We don't have to walk a lot. Thirty minutes a day has a huge impact on our health.
  • Men who walk thirty minutes a day have a significantly lower level of prostate cancer. Men who walk regularly have a 60 percent lower risk of colon cancer.
  • For men with prostate cancer, studies have shown that walkers have a 46 percent lower mortality rate.
  • Walking also helps prevent depression, and people who walk regularly are more likely to see improvements in their depression.
  • In one study, people who walked and took medication scored twice as well in 30 days as the women who only took the medication. Another study showed that depressed people who walked regularly had a significantly higher level of not being depressed in a year compared to depressed people who did not walk. The body generates endorphins when we walk. Endorphins help us feel good.
  • Walking strengthens the heart. Walking strengthens bones.
  • Walking improves the circulatory system.
  • Walking generates positive neurochemicals. Healthy eating is important but dieting can trigger negative neurochemicals and can be hard to do.
  • Walking generates positive neurochemicals. People look forward to walking and enjoy walking.
  • And research shows that fit beats fat for many people. Walking half an hour a day has health benefits that exceed the benefits of losing 20 pounds.
  • When we walk every day, our bodies are healthier and stronger. A single 30 minute walk can reduce blood pressure by five points for over 20 hours.
  • Walking reduces the risk of blood clots in your legs.
  • People who walk regularly have much lower risk of deep vein thrombosis.
  • People who walk are less likely to catch colds, and when people get colds, walkers have a 46 percent shorter symptom time from their colds.
  • Walking improves the health of our blood, as well. Walking is a good boost of high density cholesterol and people with high levels of HDL are less likely to have heart attacks and stroke.
  • Walking significantly diminishes the risk of hip fracture and the need for gallstone surgery is 20 to 31 percent lower for walkers.
  • Walking is the right thing to do. The best news is that the 30 minutes doesn't have to be done in one lump of time. Two 15 minute walks achieve the same goals. Three 10 minute walks achieve most of those goals.
  • We can walk 15 minutes in the morning and 15 minutes at night and achieve our walking goals.
  • Walking feels good. It helps the body heal. It keeps the body healthy. It improves our biological health, our physical health, our psychosocial health, and helps with our emotional health. Walking can literally add years entire years to your life.

Its good to walk.

Be good to yourself
. Be good to your body.


Saturday, November 1, 2014

Turmeric and Alzheimer's

They've been looking for a cure, but so far have found nothing.

The search for an Alzheimer's drug has been almost a complete and total

Experts are saying that over 99 percent of the research they've been
spending years -- and billions of dollars on -- has gone nowhere.

But could the answer be right there under our nose?

And I mean that literally. Right under our nose in the pungent aroma of
dishes that use the spice turmeric.

Because there have been some very important studies done on this spice that
might help those showing signs of both Alzheimer's *and* dementia.

Researchers found that the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties in
turmeric may be powerful enough to break up the amyloid plaques in the
brain that contribute to Alzheimer's disease.

That could be due to the fact that turmeric is an antioxidant powerhouse
that also has anti-inflammatory effects.

And it could also explain why the rate of Alzheimer's in India (where
turmeric is widely consumed) is among the lowest in the world.

We've been hearing good news about turmeric for years, but this new
research looked at thousands of studies, data and articles about the spice.
And what it uncovered is that this remarkable root has more than 600
"potential preventive and therapeutic applications."

The health benefits of turmeric and its active ingredient curcumin -- the
spice that gives curry its familiar aroma and yellow hue -- have been found
in a new study to be as effective as 14 different drugs.

The researchers also compared the effectiveness of turmeric to some
big-selling drugs, and what they found was next to astounding. Not only did
turmeric do what these conventional meds claim to, but it did so without
risking any of the deadly side effects that these drugs bring along with

   - Cholesterol -- A 2004 study found that turmeric reduces bad
   cholesterol, helps fight plaque buildup in the arteries and can be as
   effective as Lipitor.
   - Several studies have found that turmeric is as effective as steroid
   drugs in reducing inflammation.
   - A study published in 2011 found the spice to be just as good in
   relieving depression as popular antidepressants drugs like Prozac.
   - Research discovered that turmeric is an effective blood thinner, like
   aspirin, but with none of the side effects.
   - A 2009 study found that turmeric can be thousands of times more
   effective than drugs for diabetes such as Metformin. That research also
   uncovered that turmeric works in the liver to keep glucose levels down in

So keep enjoying curry and other dishes that contain Turmeric, because the
good news about this spice is bound to just keep getting better.

Monday, June 9, 2014

How do you know if one treatment will work better than another, or if it will do more harm than good?

Cochrane Reviews are systematic reviews of primary research in human health care and health policy, and are internationally recognised as the highest standard in evidence-based health care.

They investigate the effects of interventions for prevention, treatment and rehabilitation. They also assess the accuracy of a diagnostic test for a given condition in a specific patient group and setting. They are published online in The Cochrane Library.

Each systematic review addresses a clearly formulated question; for example: Can antibiotics help in alleviating the symptoms of a sore throat? All the existing primary research on a topic that meets certain criteria is searched for and collated, and then assessed using stringent guidelines, to establish whether or not there is conclusive evidence about a specific treatment.

The reviews are updated regularly, ensuring that treatment decisions can be based on the most up-to-date and reliable evidence.
“We care that you care enough to help us provide people all over the world, with a personal or professional interest in health care, with reliable information.”

Sonja Henderson, former Managing Editor of the Cochrane Pregnancy and Childbirth Group, Liverpool, UK

Cochrane Reviews are designed to facilitate the choices that practitioners, consumers, policy-makers and others face in health care.........To read more, CLICK HERE 

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Astragalus: Chinese medicinal herb enlisted in fight against allergic rhinitis

A herb long used in traditional Chinese medicine for diabetes has been recently proven effective for allergic rhinitis, with some even touting the plant as a 'superfood'.

Dr Pecanic, who is currently the Regulatory Department head of the South-East European Croatian-based health supplements and non-prescription drugs company Milsing, was in town recently to speak about a new allergy treatment based on the herb Astragalus membranaceus.

Also known as huang qi, bei qi or huang hu huang qi in Chinese, the dried root of A. membranaceus has actually been used in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) for thousands of years. Its primary function in TCM is as an energising tonic and boosting the immune system, as well as treating diabetes.

It is this last function that led a group of researchers at the Ruder Bokovic Institute in Zagreb, Croatia, to take a deeper look at the root of this herb 14 years ago.

Milsing Product Development head and pharmacist Iva Martic shares: “During the research, they discovered that the activated root extract of A. membranaceus substantially influences some of the genes which are involved in the inflammatory reaction.

To read the whole article please CLICK HERE

Friday, May 2, 2014

Natural Remedies ... From Round the World

Natural remedies are the healthiest way to treat your ailments, 
but where do they come from? Here are 15 common natural 
remedies from around the world that you may or may not have heard of.  
This is necessary information for any health buff!

1. Coconuts Fight Fat - Sri Lanka
natural remedies

You may have heard that coconut oil is a great way to slim your waist. 
Well the people of Sri Lanka figured this one out way before the rest of the world. 
It is reported that the average Sri Lankan eats about 116 coconuts per year, and 
they are half as likely as the average American to pack on the pounds. 
The reason is that coconut oil is packed with medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs) 
that stimulate the liver to burn fat 50 percent faster than normal. Try having about 
two tablespoons of coconut oil daily (in your cooking) and you could shed up to 
three pounds a month!

2. Yoga Treats Insomnia - Austria
natural remedies
Although yoga is practiced all over the world, in Austria it is used solely 
as a stress-buster and quick treatment for insomnia. Austrians like to go 
all out and go on yoga retreats and holidays for up to a week, but according 
to research from the University of Pennsylvania, practicing yoga for just 
20 minutes a day could get rid of your insomnia. The research also 
found that practicing yoga is just as effective, if not more, than taking a 
sleeping pill and it also will rid you of anxiety, stress and depression.

3. Ginger Controls Triglycerides - Indonesia
natural remedies
Indonesia is the world's largest grower and consumer of ginger and 
ginger products, with locals using it in their cooking, teas, candies 
and breads. Their tradition has long pointed to ginger as an effective 
 treatment for the heart, and there are studies to back them up. 
Triglycerides are fats that clog your arteries, and according to 
Stanford researchers, a daily dose of ginger could cut the production 
of these fats by 27 percent. Ginger is also twice as effective as 
aspirin at preventing blood clots and preventing inflammation.

4. Turmeric Steadies Blood Sugar - India
natural remedies
Turmeric is a flavorful yellow spice used in rice and meat dishes and 
even desserts, but it also has outstanding medicinal properties. 
Indians use turmeric to treat high blood sugar levels, a practice 
that has been scientifically confirmed by research at Gujarat University. 
They confirmed that the active ingredient in turmeric, called curcumin,
 switches on the genes that keep blood glucose levels stable. 
The compound can also help the pancreas make insulin when it is low. 
In order to see the benefits of turmeric, start taking about half a 
teaspoon daily either directly or in your cooking.

5. Mushrooms Fight Cholesterol - Japan
natural remedies
Mushrooms are a popular food and medicine in Japan, with the average 
Japanese woman consuming about 8 pounds of mushrooms a year. 
According to research from Penn State University, adding about a 
half a cup of mushrooms to your daily diet could cut cholesterol levels 
by nearly 30 percent. This is because mushrooms are packed 
with antioxidants that prevent the liver's production of artery-clogging fats.

6. Mustard Baths Calm Muscle Pain - England
natural remedies
Ever heard of a mustard bath? While it may sound like a hoax, mustard 
baths are used heavily in England to quell tight and achy muscles. 
Mustard has healing plant compounds that draw out toxins through 
the pores to improve circulation, relax tight muscles and speed the 
healing of damaged tissue.

For your own mustard bath, mix 2 cups of Epsom salts, 1/4 cup 

baking soda, 1/4 cup dry mustard in a jar. Pour only 1/4 of this 
mixture into a warm bath, mix the water before getting in, soak 
for 20 minutes and rinse.

7. Chamomile Tea Beats Off Bloating - Germany
natural remedies