Category Archives: Health & Fitness

Tips on A Homemade Colon Cleansing Diet for Weight Loss

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What in the world does a homemade colon cleansing diet have to do with weight loss? Frankly, a whole darn lot! Just think about it for a minute. If you’re full of it you can be retaining body waste and holding fluid. A good cleansing of your colon will work miracles in the way you feel and help get rid of a few extra pounds. This article will provide you with some tips that will help you out.

Colon cleansing diets have the aim of refreshing and cleaning out your colon and other parts of your insides. The positive effect this has on your body is measured in several different ways.

1st. You will find yourself having more energy. As all that horrible debris is cleared from your body it makes you feel amazingly energized.

2nd. You will notice your skin looking clearer and more alive. You will have your loved ones asking you what you have done with yourself.

3rd.  You will reduce the bloating in your lower belly area. In fact, that new pair of tight jeans will go on easier and look better.

4th. You will lose weight fast.

This is the flow on effect from cleansing your colon.

Colon cleansing may be undertaken through a thorough cleansing action, such as pills or an enema. In addition, you can accomplish this through dieting. The second option is much less intrusive than the first and often; more effective. Meanwhile, while dieting you will be treating your entire body, mind and inner being to a healthier you.

There are some important things to remember when going on a homemade colon cleansing diet. These include:

– Drink at least 8 (8oz), preferably more, glasses of water per day. Spring or filtered water is better than tap water.

– Drinking fruit and vegetable shakes is a great way to stave off hunger.

– Eliminate dairy products – they are something to avoid when cleansing the body.

– Cut out red meat entirely or reduce your intake to 6 oz. or less. Meat is the major factor in the buildup of toxins in the body. A good substitute for the red meat is chicken or fish.

Steamed vegetables and fruit ideally should make up 90% of your colon cleansing diet. Steamed vegetables retain more nutrients than other ways of cooking vegetables which can often cook out the goodness. Raw vegetables are however the best, although sometimes not the tastiest, way to consume vegetables.

So, what other symptoms can colon cleansing assist with? You may be surprised to learn about how many minor symptoms are caused by matter built up in the colon. This may include:

          Headaches

          Tiredness

          Back ache

          Constipation

          Abdominal pain

          Bloating

          Depression

          Weight gain or loss

          Insomnia

          Acne

All the above symptoms can benefit from a homemade colon cleansing diet.

Today’s dietary trend of high fat foods is rather different to what humans were eating 100 years ago, but our bodies have not changed. This results in the body rejecting much of the food we eat and excessive build up in the colon is one negative result of this.

After completing your homemade colon cleansing diet, you must stick to a permanently healthy diet to retain colon and digestive health. As always when implementing a new change to your body it is always best to check with your medical doctor prior to taking the action.

This article is for informational purposes only. It should not be used as medical advice or as a substitute for medical advice.

3 Powerful Motivation Tips for Ripped Abs

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Can you see yourself walking down the street at your favorite location looking and feeling great?  Or as you stroll down the beach and you notice people glance over their shoulders to admire your beautiful ripped abs that belong to you. Feeling so confident in yourself that your vacation seems perfect like a dream.  You pinch yourself and realize that you have arrived. 

Everyone in this green earth would love to have six pack abs and be fully healthy.  Can everyone archive this goal?  Yes. We people where created for excellence so yes, anything is possible.  Although some may find it difficult to reach personal goals, anything is possible if you have an optimistic and positive outlook on life.

“Life is not fair” We can begin our day very positive, but by the end of the day if you are not fully focused of your objective and constantly thinking of your aspirations you can be a victim of procrastination.  We as humans tend to enjoy the path of least resistance.  Justifying our excuses and having procrastinations of our objectives.  Nobody said that being discipline was easy.  As a matter of fact here are some examples of things we tell ourselves unconsciously that keeps us from hitting our goals: “I would love to work out, but I don’t want to be sore for tomorrow’s barbeque.”, “I will have a free day this weekend therefore I will stuff my face with cookies and milk.”, “I love the gym, I just don’t have time to go anymore.”

The interesting thing is that we make ourselves believe such things.  When it is just bogus.  The secret to success is not overworking but being in control of your thinking and outlooks in life.  Whether you are looking to lose a few pounds or get in shape for bodybuilding competition, please under any circumstances don’t let yourselves of any excuses.  Here are some helpful mindsets that will help when you get back on track when you feel you are buying your excuses:

One:  Always tell your friends and family about your goals.  Telling your acquaintances about your goals is great.  Some will take you seriously and some won’t.  But the reasoning behind this is that they can help you be on track.  When you are genuine with people, they respect that, and sometimes are willing to help you out. 

Two:  Setting goals with a partner or friend.  Often having a workout partner or a dieting partner will make things better for everyone.  Besides a little competition, a little encouragement from a workout buddy makes a huge difference.  Pick someone that you enjoy being with and someone that you know will help you when you feel a bit down on yourself.  Friends are incredible at picking one up and making us feel great.

Three: Writing down your aspirations and visions.  Get a notepad right this moment, and jock down all your goals and aspirations.  On a piece of paper make a line down the middle.  In one side have your “goals” and the other have “aspirations” example. Goal #1 Lose 10 pounds this month. Aspiration #1   Lose 10 pounds so I can buy a new pair of jeans, and so on.  Make sure they are in detail and try to make them very personable.  Soon you will develop these mental changes that will change your life forever subconsciously.  Also Take note of the times you are at your lowest in energy and pull out your sheet and read those to you out loud.  Might sound kind of weird but it works.  Professional athletes do it every day.  Why not you?

Getting in top shape is harder than it looks.  It takes discipline and full commitment. Its rewards are priceless and the amount of confidence you get when you are watched or check out is amazing.  Or even if you simply just want to live an incredible healthy lifestyle and carrying on that mindset to your family and kids, is worth it.  Stay focused, stay in the fight and we will see you in the beaches of the world sporting your ripped abs.

20 Simple Wrinkle Erasers

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Aging of the skin is a natural process by which the collagen and elastin, that keep our skin looking firm and youthful, begin to decline, this results in wrinkles. Cell production and cell quality also diminish over time resulting in wrinkles. These factors unfortunately are out of our control, though diet and supplements can slow down the process, but it won’t stop it.

The influences that are within our control are largely environmental such as pollution (e.g.; smoking) and sun damage. Here are 20 easy ways to reduce wrinkles and slow down the aging process.

1.    Stop smoking (Its #1 for a reason)

2.    Always wear sunscreen whether its cloudy or sunny and don’t sunbake.

3.    Hydrate your skin by drinking about 8 glasses of water a day.

4.    Use skin care products that contain antioxidants and AHA’s.

5.    Moisturize the skin on your face twice daily.

6.    Reduce stress. (Try reading, exercising, meditating) 15 minutes a day is a good start.

7.    Reduce alcohol consumption. Overindulging can put enormous strain on your system and will accelerate wrinkles forming.

8.    Eat healthily by incorporating plenty of fruits and vegetables in your daily diet.

9.    Sleep at least 8 hours every night.

10.   Eat fish three times a week. Great for the skin and general health.

11.   Check with your doctor about taking supplements, your diet may be lacking some of the important ones.

12.   Use an eye cream for the delicate skin around the eyes nightly.

13.   Facial scrubs remove the buildup of dead cells that can increase the appearance of wrinkles, try this weekly.

14.   Use natural skin care products that will nourish your skin and give it lots of vitamins and minerals to help it stay fresh and healthy.

15.   Jojoba oil resembles the skins natural oils. Dab this around the eyes to keep wrinkles at bay.

16.   Take vitamin C supplements and use products that contain vitamin C, it will help boost your collagen.

17.   Start a good skin care routine in your 20s. Prevention is easier than the cure.

18.   Honey is known worldwide for its beneficial abilities. Use a honey mask weekly. Simply apply the honey to your face and neck and leave for 30 minutes then rinse off. This mask will “feed” your skin with nutrients.

19.    Aloe Vera and Avocado oil both can prevent the skin from drying out; they are both used to improve the skins elasticity.

20.    A soothing way to help achieve a wrinkle-free face is to lie on your back with your knees elevated by placing a pillow or cushion beneath them.

Try this when you are watching TV or reading.

10 Tips to Lower Cholesterol

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Do you have high cholesterol and need to lower it? That is no surprise considering how many people have high cholesterol these days. To help lower your cholesterol, here are 10 tips you can get started with today.

As with anything health related, diet and exercise are the two crucial components. What you eat is critical to lowering your cholesterol levels, so that is what is included here.

One thing you should know is the difference between LDL and HDL cholesterol. Simply think of HDL as “healthy” and LDL as “lousy.” HDL can help carry cholesterol out of your blood vessels while LDL allows it to deposit inside your artery walls.

The good news is that you can change your cholesterol for the better. Here is how to do just that:

1. Have a nice sandwich on whole wheat bread or a pita with some lean turkey and lots of fresh veggies. Skip the hot dogs, bologna, and salami, and hold the Mayo. All of those are highly processed and filled with fat and cholesterol.

2. Fish, like salmon, is good. Look for wild red salmon varieties, which are very high in Omega-3 fatty acids (good fat.) Also, flax seed is a good source of Omega-3s.

3. Avoid Trans fats! Not only do they raise the lousy LDL cholesterol, they can also lower your HDL levels! Stay away from foods like margarine, shortening, and processed foods containing partially hydrogenated soybean oil.

4. Go ahead, go nuts! Look for walnuts mainly but also try almonds, macadamia nuts, cashews, and pecans. Nuts are high in fat, but it’s the good kind. (Also, use natural peanut butter instead of the normal kind which contains unhealthy Trans fats.)

5. Limit desserts and try to eat only the healthier ones like angel food cake, graham crackers, Jell-O, and fat-free frozen yogurt.

6. Eat foods that are high in fiber. Examples include whole wheat bread, oatmeal, fruits, vegetables, beans, and some cereals. (Look for the boxes that say, “may help lower cholesterol.”)

7. Use the grill. If you’re going to have steak or burgers, grill them at home and use lean meat. This practice avoids the grease, is fun, and the meat tastes great.

8. Find a new salad dressing. Most of them are full of Trans fats and cholesterol. Olive oil is good, and maybe add vinegar or lemon juice. Also, skip the bacon bits, croutons, and egg yolks.

9. Go overboard on fruits and vegetables. They contain no cholesterol and they have lots of nutrients like antioxidants.

Here are some examples: green peas, broccoli, cauliflower, apples, oranges, mangos, papaya, pineapple, tomato, garlic, onions, spinach, water chestnuts, bananas, apricots, blueberries, and kiwi.

10. Avoid fast food like French fries and anything else from the deep fryer. Those foods will raise your cholesterol like crazy, so stay away from the burger joints if you can.

11. Bonus tip: Use spices like pepper and oregano to add flavor to your dishes. They are a healthy alternative to other toppings like Mayo.

That was easy, wasn’t it? Just make some of these changes and get plenty of exercise like walking, jogging, swimming, or playing basketball. You will have lower cholesterol in no time!

10 Tips on How to Heal Acne

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There are several ways on how to cure back acne. Bacne a short term for back acne is just like any ordinary forms of acne. It can appear as pimples, blackheads, pustules or in severe cases it would look like an acne cyst. This commonly appears during puberty when the sebaceous gland starts to function aggressively. Male, female, teenagers or adult, back acne does not have a range of age nor gender and practically can affect anybody. Below are some ways to treat acne.

1.     Wear cool clothes and put some powder at your back to prevent perspiration. This is a vital way on how to cure back acne. Change clothes if you have perspired too much on it to prevent further back acne build up.

2.     After doing a vigorous activity, you would probably give off too much sweat. Take a shower immediately or if not possible, wipe your perspiration using towels with soft fabric such as cotton.

3.     Pat dry you skin after taking a shower. Do not rub the towel. It might irritate your skin and cause inflammation on your back acne.

4.     If your back acne is not yet severe, you may still use anti-bacterial cleansers that are designed for facial acne. Nowadays, there are also anti-acne soaps that can be used not just for the face but for body as well. Avoid using regular soap. These soaps may not meet the demands that your sensitive skin needs.

5.     Avoid carrying back packs until your back acne clears up. This would prevent your back from heating up which results to more perspiration and breeding ground for bacteria that causes back acne.

6.     One of the best ways on how to cure back acne properly is to use gels or creams containing at least 10 percent benzoyl peroxide. They can be bought at drugstores even without any prescriptions from a dermatologist (skin doctor).

7.     Studies show that benzoyl peroxide works better when used with products having alpha hydroxy. This will heal and dry up back acne two times faster.

8.     Some people also have natural techniques on how to cure back acne. One home remedy for treating back acne is to use homemade Sodium Hydroxide (Lye) soap while adding some tea tree oil in it. This does not dry and heal acne faster but would give you a softer skin.

9.     Exfoliate once a week. If you don’t want to spend money on buying expensive body scrubs, you may use sugar instead to take off all those dead skin cells. Do it on the affected area such as back and buttocks.

10.     You may seek professional help in case of very severe back acne. Theirs is nothing to be ashamed about. Dermatologists are willing to help people suffering this kind of skin problem. They would probably recommend medicines that needs prescription, antibiotics that should be taken orally, topical treatments, retinol or even oral contraceptives (for female only).

So, there you go. These are only ten of the most effective ways on how to cure back acne.

3 Common Mistakes by Yoga Newcomers

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Whenever we start something new, we have a certain feeling of trepidation and uncertainty of the unknown and in most cases, it is completely unfounded and we get on with things very quickly and easily.  Sometimes it isn’t and a simple little thing can cause us to have an entirely negative first impression and perhaps even never want to try that activity or pastime again.  Yoga has so many health benefits, on both a physical and spiritual level, that it would be a tragedy for anyone to miss out on them because they made a silly avoidable mistake on their first day.  With that in mind this article addresses the 3 most common mistakes of new Yogi, and how to make sure they don’t happen to you.

Mistake One:  Not knowing what you want from Yoga.

  The reality is that there are numerous different styles and forms of Yoga and each has it’s different attractions.  Ask yourself what it was about Yoga in general that attracted you and then you can investigate a style that caters more specifically to that.  You may like to set goals, be they physical, mental or spiritual.  If you do then it’s a good idea to discuss them with the instructor of your class before you begin.  Yoga instructors are usually very approachable and happy to talk about their passion.  They will be able to talk to you about your goals for the class and let you know if you are being realistic, aiming too high or too low.  Make sure you goal includes a timeframe, so it becomes something that is measurable.

Mistake Two:  Jumping in Feet First.

  Having decided that they will give this Yoga thing a try many people take a running leap and jump in to a 12-month stage by stage class.  These classes are usually an upfront payment arrangement and progress from one level to the next as the weeks progress.  They are a fantastic way of learning Yoga and becoming very good at it, but it’s quite possibly you will choose a class that is not ideal for you.

  The best way around this is to join a Yoga beginner class, also known as a drop-in class.  If you do these classes for a few weeks you will notice a high turnover of students as new people join and old people move on.  These classes are designed to give you a very broad feel for the different types of Yoga.  The level of the students in the class usually varies greatly so you can expect the instructor to keep the classes quite tame.  The other key benefit of doing this is that the classes are pay as you go so there is no big financial outlay for you while you decide the type and style of yoga that best suits you.  You are also not obliged to attend every class.  With the longer courses you can fall behind quickly if you miss a week or two in a row.  With the pay as you go classes you will find that while each class is different the level stays quite low to cater for the newer people joining in.

Mistake Three:  Choosing the wrong teacher.

  Traditionally a Yogi had to be an apprentice to a skilled Guru for many years before he could teach even the simplest of Yoga technique.  Nowadays a 3-day course over a long weekend is considered enough by some people.  There is a big difference in what you will achieve depending on the skills and abilities of the person teaching you.  Yoga is starting to make a regular appearance on the sports injury list and a large reason for this is instructors who have been taught just enough to be dangerous.  A qualified teacher won’t necessarily be fantastic, and an unqualified teacher won’t necessarily be terrible – but the odds are certainly cast in that direction, so it’s a good idea to check your instructors background and qualifications before you begin studying with them.

12-Step Salute to the Sun – Yoga Exercise

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One of the all-around yoga exercises is the 12-step salute to the sun. Do it once or twice when you get up in the morning to help relieve stiffness and invigorate the body. Multiple repetitions at night will help you to relax; insomniacs often find that six to 12 rounds help them fall asleep.

1. Stand with your feet slightly apart, palms together, thumbs against your chest.

2. Inhale deeply while slowly raising your hands over your head, and bend back as far as possible, while tightening your buttocks. Hold for three seconds.

3. Slowly exhale and bend forward, keeping your knees straight, until your fingers touch the floor outside your feet. (If you can’t touch the floor, go as close as you can.) Bring your head in toward your knees.

4. Slowly inhale, bend your knees, and if your fingertips aren’t outside your feet on the floor, place them there. Slide your right foot back as far as you can go, with the right knee an inch or so off the floor, (a lunge position). Now look up as high as possible, arching your back.

5. Before exhaling again, slide your left foot back until it is beside the right one, and with your weight supported on your palms and toes, straighten both legs so that your body forms a flat plane. Make sure your stomach is pulled in.

6. Slowly exhale, bend both knees to the floor, bend with your hips in the air, lower your chest and forehead to the floor.

7. Now inhale slowly and look up, bending your head back, then raising it, followed by your upper chest, then lower chest. Your lower body – from the navel down – should be on the floor, and your elbows should be slightly bent. Hold for three to five seconds.

8. Exhale slowly and raise your hips until your feet and palms are flat on the floor and your arms and legs are straight in an inverted V position.

9. Inhale slowly and bring your right foot forward as in position 4. The foot should be flat on the floor between your fingertips. The left leg should be almost straight behind you, with its knee slightly off the floor. Raise your head, look up, and arch your back.

10. Slowly exhale and bring your left foot forward next to your right one. Straighten your legs and stand, trying to keep your fingertips on the floor, and try to touch your head to your knees as in position 3.

11. Slowly inhale, raise your arms up and stretch back as in position 2. Don’t forget to tighten your buttocks. Hold for three seconds.

12. Slowly exhale, lowering your arms to your sides. Relax. Repeat the series.

10 Steps to Clearer Skin

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At some stage in all our lives we want clearer, fresher, younger looking skin. Well it can be achieved without spending a lot of money and it can happen naturally! What you must do is persevere and over the course of three weeks your skin will begin to look fresher and clearer. Here’s how;

1. Keeping your skin clean is your priority! You must cleanse your face morning and night with a gentle, natural cleanser that not only rids the skin of dirt and grime but then treats it with an antibacterial ingredient like tea tree oil.

2. After cleansing the skin pat dry and then spray a fine toning mist over the face to cool and help close the pores while they are clean. Let this mist dry on the face.

3. When the toner has dried apply a very small amount of moisturizer over the entire face and neck. Look for a moisturizer that is made for problem skin types and contains antibacterial ingredients like tea tree oil and lavender essential oil. These ingredients are gentle but very effective at clearing the skin from blemishes and pimples.

4. Getting the right amount of restful sleep your body needs nightly will reflect in the state of your skin. Seven hours is generally adequate. Not enough sleep over a period will result in problems that are hard to cure such as loose skin under the eyes and dark circles.

5. The food you eat is of the utmost importance for healthy, clear skin! Make sure you are getting a good amount of fresh fruits and vegetables and limit your red meat intake to three or four times a week. Foods that are easily digested will help your system keep your skin nourished and promote fresh, new cell growth. Drink lots and lots of water too!

6. Cleanse the skin on your body and face with a weekly scrub. When using a body scrub start at your feet and work towards the heart, this helps eliminate toxins. Doing it the opposite direction will push the toxins back into your system. Use a very gentle facial scrub on your face and neck as these areas can be easily damaged.

7. Try an Aspirin face mask! This mask is having fantastic results on those people with open pores, pimples and acne. Crush about 15 aspirin tablets to a powder mix to a paste with a little water, less than 1 teaspoon and then apply to a cleansed face. Leave for twenty minutes to work its way into the skin and then rinse off and apply a light moisturizer. Try this weekly, after a face scrub.

8. Once a month use a home steam treatment to thoroughly draw out impurities from the face. Add boiling water to a basin or bowl and add two drops of tea tree oil. Place your face over this with a towel covering and gently let the steam open and cleanse the pores. Be careful not to let the steam burn your face. Finish with a tepid face wash.

9. Get out into the fresh air and take a walk, swim in the sea, ride a bike and have fun! The exercise will boost your system and your skin will love it.

10. Take a fish oil supplement daily. Cultures that eat a lot of fish have clearer skin and the fish oil helps eliminate toxins from the body and by now you know that is fantastic for your skin!

These ten easy tips will help you get that clear skin you so desperately want, remember to make the lifestyle changes you need to and enjoy the benefits that will come with it! A fresher, clearer more youthful looking complexion.

An AI detected colorectal cancer with 86 percent accuracy

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A new computer-aided endoscopic system that probes for signs of tumor or cancer growth in the colon may very well be the future of cancer detection. Assisted by artificial intelligence (AI), the new diagnostic system is able to tell if clumps of cells, called colorectal polyps, that grow along the walls of the colon are benign tumors known as colorectal adenoma.

The computer-assisted diagnostic system was trained using more than 30,000 images of colorectal polyps, each magnified 500-times, and operates using machine learning. The AI can check approximately 300 features of the polyp, which it compares to its existing “knowledge”, in less than a second. After having been used successful in preliminary studies, prospective trials followed. The results of these trials, the first for AI-assisted endoscopy in a clinical setting, were presented at the 25th UEG Week in Barcelona, Spain.

The prospective study was conducted by a team led by Dr. Yuichi Mori from Showa University in Yokohama, Japan. Mori and his colleagues tested the new system in 250 patients previously identified to have colorectal polyps. The AI predicted the pathology of each polyp, comparing it with final pathological reports taken from the resected specimens. The results were highly encouraging — the system assessed 306 polyps in real-time, with a 94 percent sensitivity, 79 percent specificity, and 86 percent accuracy. In identifying abnormal tissue growth, the system demonstrated 79 percent positive and 93 percent negative predictive values.

AI IN HEALTHCARE

In short, the AI was able to fairly accurately identify which abnormal colon cell growths were most likely to be cancerous. “The most remarkable breakthrough with this system is that artificial intelligence enables real-time optical biopsy of colorectal polyps during colonoscopy, regardless of the endoscopists’ skill,” Mori said, speaking during the Opening Plenary at the UEG Week. “This allows the complete resection of adenomatous polyps and prevents unnecessary polypectomy of non-neoplastic polyps.”

Furthermore, the researchers presented the results of their prospective study to prove that their system was ready for clinical trials.”We believe these results are acceptable for clinical application and our immediate goal is to obtain regulatory approval for the diagnostic system,” Mori added.

While this may be the first AI-enabled, real-time biopsy, as Mori described it, it’s not the first time AI has been used to improve medical diagnosis and overall medical research. For example, there is an AI effective in identifying skin cancer, and chipmaker NVIDIA is working on a moonshot project to accelerate cancer research using deep learning. Also working in cancer diagnosis is IBM’s Watson, which in some cases has proven to be 99 percent accurate in recommending the same treatments as doctors. Improved cancer detection can spell the difference between a treatment that works and one that doesn’t, so these advancements are potentially life-saving.

Moving forward, Mori’s team plans to conduct a multicenter study to aid eventual clinical tests. They’re also working on an automatic polyp detection system. “Precise on-site identification of adenomas during colonoscopy contributes to the complete resection of neoplastic lesions” said Dr Mori. “This is thought to decrease the risk of colorectal cancer and, ultimately, cancer-related death.”

Source:

https://futurism.com/ai-assisted-detection-identifies-colon-cancer-automatically-and-in-real-time/

A Weed Killer Is Increasingly Showing Up in People’s Bodies

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The latest study to look at the long-term effects of Roundup, a popular weed killer developed by Monsanto in the 1970s, raises questions about the herbicide’s possible contributions to poor health in certain communities.

The study, published Tuesday in JAMA, tracked people over the age of 50 in southern California from 1993-1996 to 2014-2016, with researchers periodically collecting urine samples during that time.

Researchers led by Paul Mills, professor of family medicine and public health at the University of California San Diego, found that the percentage of people who tested positive for a chemical called glyphosate, which is the active ingredient in the herbicide Roundup, shot up by 500% in that time period. The levels of glyphosate also spiked by 1208% during that time.

Exactly what that means for human health isn’t quite clear yet. There are few studies of the chemical and its effects on people, although animal studies raise some concerns. One trial from the UK, in which rats were fed low levels of glyphosate throughout their lives, found that the chemical contributed to a higher risk of nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, a condition in which fat accumulates in the liver and contributes to inflammation and scarring of the tissue. Mills says that the levels of glyphosate documented in the people in his study were 100-fold greater than those in the rats.

To follow up on these results, Mills plans to measure factors that track liver disease, to see if the levels of glyphosate he found are actually associated with a greater risk of liver problems in people. He heads the Herbicide Awareness & Research Project at UCSD, an ongoing research project in which he invites people to provide urine samples to test glyphosate levels. By gathering more information about people’s exposure, he is planning to tease apart how much of it comes from actually ingesting products sprayed with the chemical, and how much can be attributed to breathing in particles that have been sprayed into the air, especially in farm communities.

Source:

http://time.com/4993877/weed-killer-roundup-levels-humans/

Death toll from San Diego hepatitis A outbreak rises to 19; more than 500 cases confirmed

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San Diego’s hepatitis A outbreak added another death Tuesday, pushing the total to 19 as the number of confirmed cases passed 500.

Updated numbers released by the county Health and Human Services Agency come as a massive effort around vaccination, sanitation and public education continues to try and stop the largest surge of the viral disease since the vaccine for hepatitis A was approved in the late 1990s.

With last week’s total number of cases at 490, the latest reported increase to 507 may make it seem as if the outbreak continues to grow, but, because of the way that the public health department is tallying the outbreak, it is difficult to say whether that’s the case.

Last week, in a report to the San Diego County Board of Supervisors, Dr. Wilma Wooten, the county’s public health officer, said that her department had 47 cases under investigation. Those cases don’t get added to the outbreak totals until testing by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta confirms that they were caused by the same strains of hepatitis A that have caused other outbreak cases.

Source:

http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-hepatitis-outbreak-20171017-story.html

The Alkaline Diet CookBook: The Alkaline Meal Plan to Balance your pH, Reduce Body Acid, Lose Weight and Have Amazing Health

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Acidic and Alkaline levels are indicated in your body through pH scales. Alkaline levels in your blood should be maintained ideally at or between the pH ranges of 7.35 – 7.45. At the ranges of 7.35, your body is highly acidic and prone to a variety of illnesses. Consumption of highly acidic foods strains minerals such as Calcium, Magnesium, Potassium and Sodium from the bone deposits by regulating the acid levels. One of the best books you will find on amazon. Great health starts with knowledge, this book will help reduce acid levels and help anyone on their weight loss journey. 

 

A New Era for Diabetes Patients: FDA Clears First Prickless Blood Sugar Monitor

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In a milestone for Americans with diabetes, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has cleared the first-ever continuous blood sugar monitoring device that doesn’t require patients to take potentially painful and invasive blood tests that require pricking their fingertips to collect samples. The approval was granted to Abbott Diabetes Care Inc.

The device, Abbott’s FreeStyle Libre Flash Glucose Monitoring System, is approved for adult diabetes patients 18 years of age and older, and the approval sent Abbott stock up 3.5% in Thursday trading. It slashes the need for the so-called fingerstick tests that people with diabetes regularly endure to figure out whether their blood sugar levels are too high or too low, and to monitor general fluctuation in blood glucose so they can adjust their diets or medication. The device itself uses an under-the-skin sensor wire which keeps tabs on sugar levels. In order to get a gauge on where those glucose levels are at, users simply have to wave an accompanying, specialized mobile reader device over the sensor like a wand.

“The FDA is always interested in new technologies that can help make the care of people living with chronic conditions, such as diabetes, easier and more manageable,” said the FDA’s Donald St. Pierre in a statement. “This system allows people with diabetes to avoid the additional step of fingerstick calibration, which can sometimes be painful, but still provides necessary information for treating their diabetes—with a wave of the mobile reader.”

Medical device and tech companies alike have shown growing interest in diabetes management and monitoring devices. Last year, the FDA approved an artificial pancreas from device giant Medtronic to treat people with type 1 diabetes with a largely automated glucose monitoring and insulin dose-adjusting system. And then there’s Apple, which made waves over the spring when reports emerged that it had hired a team of biomedical engineers to work on a blood sugar sensor of its own, possibly integrated into an AppleWatch-type device.

Source:

http://fortune.com/2017/09/28/diabetes-fda-abbott-prickless-blood-sugar-monitor/

Douxmatok lets you use 30 percent less sugar without affecting sweetness

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As of 2016, one in five people in the U.S. are obese. As of a 2014 study, nearly 10 percent of Americans have been diagnosed with diabetes. In short, our resistance to good nutrition, both on a personal and commercial level, is causing lasting problems within the population.

Part of the problem is that the best-tasting food is usually the worst for our health, and bad eating habits beget worse eating habits.

That’s where DouxMatok comes in.

The Israel-based startup has found a way to make sugar more efficient and potent so people can eat less of it and still get the same effect.

The whole thing started when CEO Eran Baniel went to his annual check-up and learned that he was on the cusp of being pre-diabetic, and his physician told him to cut back on his sugar intake. Around the same time, his father, Dr. Avraham Baniel (a leading industrial chemical researcher in Israel), came to him with an idea to make sugar even sweeter without affecting taste.

The father-son duo, along with other founding members of the team, created a small batch of this re-engineered sugar and invited some food industry folks to try it out. Following an enthusiastically positive response, DouxMatok was born.

The company recently raised $8.1 million in funding, led by Pitango.

“We’ve been following DouxMatok from the beginning,” said Ittai Harel, managing partner at Pitango. “Part of the reason we chose to get in now is that we saw that DouxMatok was effectively creating a dynamic with food companies where they saw it as a positive. Food companies were turning a favorable eye and it became clear that DouxMatok had figured out how to position themselves within the industry.”

For years now, pharmaceutical companies have been using what they refer to as a drug carrier, which is a chemical compound or molecule that transports the drug to the intended receptors within the body. DouxMatok is doing the same thing with sugar.

The average American consumes between 150 and 170 pounds of sugar in a single year. But according to DouxMatok CTO Dr. Alejandro Marabi, we never taste a significant amount of the sugar we eat. Instead, it goes straight to our belly, adding to our caloric intake without any of the benefit of getting that sweet taste.

 

DouxMatok has developed a carrier system for sugar that makes the sugar molecule travel straight to the sweetness receptors on your taste buds and stay there as long as possible, increasing the efficacy of sugar within your diet.

DouxMatok says it can reduce the amount of sugar needed in foods, without affecting taste at all, by around 30 percent, differing slightly based on the recipe.

“Right now, the sugar industry is fighting against artificial sweeteners like Stevia and high-impact sugars,” said Eran Baniel. “Sugar is considered the enemy and people are looking for ways to replace sugar. It’s not just a trend; that sentiment is here to stay.”

DouxMatok is working both with sugar refiners and food brands to work out new recipes for existing products that use less overall sugar.

In terms of business, DouxMatok will work with refiners to buy their original refined sugar at wholesale prices, and then partner with them to re-engineer it into DouxMatok sugar, sharing revenue from the sale of DouxMatok products to food brands.

Source:

Douxmatok lets you use 30 percent less sugar without affecting sweetness

A New Cancer Treatment Could Be More Effective Than Chemotherapy

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Scientists have discovered a new process to kill cancer cells, called Caspase Independent Cell Death (CICD), that can get rid of tumors, and decrease the risk of both side effects and recurrence. In experimental models, CICD removed tumors completely — killing all cancer cells.

Current treatments such as chemotherapy, immunotherapy, and radiation all carry risks of side effects, and they frequently fail to kill all cancer cells, which leads to recurrence. These treatments all work through apoptosis, the process of activating proteins called caspases to cause cell death.

Dr. Stephen Tait, the researcher who led the University of Glasgow team in the work on the CICD technique, told Sky News the new method “often led to complete tumor regression” and “may be a more effective way to treat cancer” than apoptosis. He added: “In essence, this mechanism has the potential to dramatically improve the effectiveness of anti-cancer therapy and reduce unwanted toxicity. Taking into consideration our findings, we propose that engaging CICD as a means of anti-cancer therapy warrants further investigation.”

Cancer is one of the leading causes of death globally. Worldwide, there were 14 million new cases of cancer and 8.2 million cancer-related deaths in 2012. Within the next 20 years, the number of new cancer cases will rise to 22 million worldwide.

 

In the United States alone, an estimated 1,685,210 new cases of cancer were diagnosed in 2016, and 595,690 people died. Every year in the U.S .there are about 454.8 new cases of cancer for every 100,000 adults — and 171.2 cancer deaths per 100,000 adults. About 39.6 percent of people in the U.S. will be diagnosed with cancer at some time in their lives. As a country, the U.S.’s annual national expenditures on cancer care have been estimated to reach up to $156 billion by 2020.

Cancer is a disease that science is eager to better understand so that it can be better prevented, treated, and perhaps even one day cured. Current treatment methods are only partially effective (and are typically specific to the type of cancer, of which there are many). They also make even healthy cells sick, which further wreaks havoc on the rest of the body, not just the cancerous tumors. In contrast, when the CICD technique kills cancer cells, those cells release inflammatory proteins which alert the immune system to ramp up the body’s own natural defenses, which then attack any remaining tumor cells missed during the initial treatment.

Work remains for the researchers, as they have not yet successfully triggered the CICD response in humans. They hope that achievement will be possible as their research continues and they experiment with a wider range of cancer cells (the current work focused solely on colorectal cancer cells). Still, these initial results are very promising.

“Although many cancer treatments work by triggering apoptosis, that method sometimes fails to finish the job and instead may lead to the tumor becoming harder to treat,” spokesperson Dr. Justine Alford told Sky News. “This new research suggests there could be a better way to kill cancer cells which, as an added bonus, also activates the immune system.”

Source:

https://futurism.com/a-new-cancer-treatment-could-be-more-effective-than-chemotherapy/

Common Food Additive Promotes Colon Cancer in Mice

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A popular food additive used in everything from dill pickles to ice cream is now linked to colon cancer, thanks to the way it impacts the gut.

 

Emulsifiers are added to most processed foods to improve food texture and extend shelf life. But it also throws off healthy levels of intestinal bacteria, triggering chronic, low-level inflammation that promotes colorectal cancer, according to a new study.

To be clear, scientists identified the potential cancer-promoting effects in an animal study. But the way I see it, it’s best to steer clear of these ingredients since various other studies suggest they impact the gut in unhealthy ways.

The finding comes on the heels of another gut breakthrough where researchers discovered fungus may trigger Crohn’s disease. Clearly, the microbiome greatly influences our disease risk. That’s why I make gut health the centerpiece of my practice and my personal health regimen.

Let’s take a closer look at this important new study, including ways to avoid this harmful class of processed food additives.


 

Hippocrates is famous for declaring that food is medicine. But his quote came long before the creation of lab-derived ingredients and processed foods. Here, we have just another example of how ingredients we often overlook can spell disaster for our health. In the recent food additive and colon cancer study, researchers at Georgia State University’s Institute for Biomedical Sciences found that mice that regularly consumed dietary emulsifiers experienced exacerbated tumor development. The results appeared in the journal Cancer Research

 

For this study, researchers focused on two of the most commonly used emulsifiers called polysorbate 80 and carboxymethylcellulose. They fed mice doses comparable to the cumulative amounts people would eat daily in processed foods. While the following findings need to be replicated in humans, I’m not taking any chances and will continue to avoid these “detergent-like” ingredients.

Consuming emulsifiers drastically changed the species composition of the gut microbiota in a manner that made it more pro-inflammatory, creating a niche favoring cancer induction and development, researchers pointed out. Alterations in bacterial species resulted in bacteria expressing more flagellin and lipopolysaccharide, which activate pro-inflammatory gene expression by the immune system.

Source:

https://draxe.com/food-additive-colon-cancer/

Google adds allergy forecast info to mobile search results

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One antihistamine or two? Google is making sure hay fever sufferers can answer that question in double quick time, thanks to the new addition of pollen measurements in search results. Plug an allergy- or pollen-related query into your Android smartphone and search results will now include a simple breakdown of current and predicted pollen levels. The new type of rich card result is populated by data from The Weather Channel, and as always, you can get more detailed info by tapping on the card itself.

Search within the Google app and you’ll also be prompted to turn on notifications. Your phone will hit you with a reminder if the pollen count is creeping particularly high in your area so you can dash to the nearest store and grab a pocket-pack of tissues before you start streaming from every facial orifice.

Source:

https://www.engadget.com/2017/08/16/google-allergy-mobile-search/

Alkaline water: Is this newly trendy water better than the rest?

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To be precise, alkaline water or water that has been “alkalized” refers to water with a higher pH than tap water. The pH scale, which measures how acidic or basic something is, runs from zero to 14, with seven being the neutral point. Anything below seven is considered acidic, while anything above seven in basic. Most tap water has a pH of 7.

Alkaline water typically has a pH greater than that of tap water. Water is alkalized through an agent – calcium or magnesium for instance – bringing its pH up to 8 or 8.5, according to Self Magazine. Bottled water brands like Essentia and Evamor are considered alkaline waters.

 

 

Health benefits of drinking alkaline water 

 

The benefits of drinking alkaline water vary depending on who you ask. According to the Mayo Clinic, some studies suggest regularly drinking alkaline water can help slow bone loss. Other studies suggest alkaline water can help ease acid reflux woes due to its higher pH levels. The most straighforward benefit of alkaline water, however, is its super hydrating quality, which brands like Essentia and Evamor promote on their websites.

 

 

Possible dangers of alkaline water

 

Although some doctors and experts sing the praises of alkaline waters, others are wary. Registered dietitian Alyse Levine argues in Shape Magazine that the studies of alkaline water are largely inconclusive or incomplete. Levine notes that clinical studies simply don’t exist to support many of the claims made.

 

Moreover, depending on your current health, drinking alkaline water could prove to have negative effects on your body. For people with kidney disease, higher levels of alkalinity could prove disastrous, according to the Nephron Information Center.

 

Source:

http://www.ajc.com/lifestyles/health/alkaline-water-this-newly-trendy-water-better-than-the-rest/rTip6MhbVRwtFq0SP9CllK/

Heme Iron from Meat and Risk of Colorectal Cancer

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Red meat and processed meat intake is associated with a risk of colorectal cancer, a major cause of death in affluent countries. Epidemiological and experimental evidence supports the hypothesis that heme iron present in meat promotes colorectal cancer. This meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies of colon cancer reporting heme intake included 566,607 individuals and 4,734 cases of colon cancer. The relative risk of colon cancer was 1.18 (95% CI: 1.06–1.32) for subjects in the highest category of heme iron intake compared with those in the lowest category. Epidemiological data thus show a suggestive association between dietary heme and risk of colon cancer. The analysis of experimental studies in rats with chemically-induced colon cancer showed that dietary hemoglobin and red meat consistently promote aberrant crypt foci, a putative precancer lesion. The mechanism is not known, but heme iron has a catalytic effect on (i) the endogenous formation of carcinogenic N-nitroso compounds and (ii) the formation of cytotoxic and genotoxic aldehydes by lipoperoxidation. A review of evidence supporting these hypotheses suggests that both pathways are involved in heme iron toxicity. Cancer Prev Res; 4(2); 177–84. ©2011 AACR.

Introduction

Cancer of the colon and rectum, taken together, are the third most common type of cancer worldwide (1). In most publications, colon and rectal cancer are studied together and the term colorectal cancer (CRC) is used, which we also use here, except when the publications refer specifically to colon or rectal cancer. CRC is the second most common cause of cancer death in affluent countries. Dietary modifications might reduce this cancer burden by up to 70% (2). Three recent meta-analyses showed that total meat intake is not related to risk but that intake of red or processed meat is associated with a modest, but significant risk of CRC (3–5). Processed meat intake appears to be more closely linked with the risk of CRC than fresh red meat intake. In its 2007 report, the World Cancer Research Fund panel recommended that one should limit intake of red meat and avoid processed meat (1).

Several mechanisms may explain the relationship between the risk of CRC and the intake of red or processed meat. First, meat cooked at high temperature contains mutagenic heterocyclic amines. But heterocyclic amines might not be major players in CRC risk, as: (i) consumption of chicken is a major contributor to intake of heterocyclic amines, but is not associated with the risk (6); and (ii) doses of heterocyclic amines that induce cancer in animals are 1,000 to 100,000 times higher than the dose ingested by humans (7). A second hypothesis suggests that the high saturated fat content of red and processed meat increases the risk of CRC. But several studies, including a recent meta-analysis, showed no effect of saturated fat on colorectal carcinogenesis (8–11). A third hypothesis concerns the carcinogenic N-nitroso compounds (NOC), which can be formed in the gastrointestinal tract by N-nitrosation of peptide derived amines or amides. The role of NOC in human cancer is discussed in the following text. Other more unlikely hypotheses involve the high protein, cholesterol, and salt content of red or processed meat. For a review of all these mechanisms, see ref. 12.

Source:

http://cancerpreventionresearch.aacrjournals.org/content/4/2/177

Amazon has a secret health care team called 1492 focused on medical records, virtual doc visits

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Amazon has started a secret skunkworks lab dedicated to opportunities in health care, including new areas such as electronic medical records and telemedicine. Amazon has dubbed this stealth team 1492, which appears to be a reference to the year Columbus first landed in the Americas.

The stealth team, which is headquartered in Seattle, is focused on both hardware and software projects, according to two people familiar. Amazon has become increasingly interested in exploring new business in healthcare. For example, Amazon has another unit exploring selling pharmaceuticals, CNBC reported in May.

 

The new team is currently looking at opportunities that involve pushing and pulling data from legacy electronic medical record systems. If successful, Amazon could make that information available to consumers and their doctors. It is also hoping to build a platform for telemedicine, which in turn could make it easier for people to have virtual consultations with doctors, one of the people said.

 

The group is also exploring health applications for existing Amazon hardware, including Echo and Dash Wand. Hospitals and doctor’s offices have already dabbled in developing skills for Amazon’s voice assistant Alexa, which presents a big opportunity for the e-commerce company.

 

It’s not clear whether Amazon is building any new health devices, but sources didn’t rule it out.

The company currently has a slew of roles available for its “stealth” operation, which are searchable on the jobs site under the keyword “a1.492.” Some job posts describe the position as “The Amazon Grand Challenge a.k.a. ‘Special Projects’ team.” The unit is currently hiring for a UX Design Manager for its “new vertical,” as well as a machine learning director with experience in healthcare IT and analytics and a knowledge of electronic medical records.

 

Some members of the team list their affiliation with a1.492 on LinkedIn. Those involved include two machine learning experts; a UX designer; and two strategic initiative leads that are running projects inside the group, Kristen Helton and Cameron Charles.

 

Amazon did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

 

1492 isn’t the only team inside Amazon that is working in health and life sciences.

 

Its cloud operation, Amazon Web Services, has also hired a slew of health experts to beat out Microsoft and Google for contracts with large hospitals and pharmaceutical vendors. The company has also invested in a health startup called Grail as a very special kind of future customer for its cloud business.

 

Its Amazon business team is also grabbing opportunities in the $3 trillion sector. It has been selling medical supplies for several years, which poses a big threat to the U.S. distribution business, and is looking to build out a pharmacy business.

 

The company is attempting to better coordinate these efforts through a series of meetings with senior leaders across these groups that kicked off this year, according to one of the people.

 

The market opportunity is enormous: Former White House CTO Aneesh Chopra, who has been highly involved in efforts to digitize health operations but had no prior knowledge of the Amazon effort, told CNBC “anyone who aspires to help consumers navigate our health system and is digitally capable should find the market conditions ripe for entry.”

 

Apple’s health unit is also working with partners in the industry to aggregate medical information, CNBC previously reported. Google and Microsoft have stumbled in similar efforts, known as Google Health and HealthVault.

Source:

http://www.cnbc.com/2017/07/26/amazon-1492-secret-health-tech-project.html

US charging 412 in health fraud schemes worth $1.3 billion

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WASHINGTON — Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Thursday announced what officials are calling the largest health care fraud enforcement action in Justice Department history.

Sessions said 412 people nationwide stand charged in health care fraud schemes resulting in $1.3 billion in false billings.

Those charged include 115 doctors and other health care providers. The opioid epidemic was a major focus of the arrests and charges.

Many defendants were charged in connection with prescribing and distributing dangerous narcotics.

“Among those defendants announced today, 120 have been charged with opioid-related crimes, making this also the largest opioid-related fraud takedown in American history,” Sessions said.

Sessions cited the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for reporting that the opioid epidemic kills more than 90 people every day.

Sessions said close to 300 health care providers have been suspended or banned from participating in federal health care programs.

Source:

U.S. charges 412 in health fraud schemes worth $1.3 billion

Grape extracts may protect against colon cancer

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Colon cancer is a very common form of cancer, affecting tens of thousands of people across the United States. Researchers may have just moved closer to a prevention strategy for this condition, as a compound that suppresses colon cancer stem cells is found in grapes.

In the U.S., colorectal cancer is the third leading cause of death from cancer among women and the second in men.

The American Cancer Society estimate that in 2017, more than 95,500 people will develop cancer of the colon, almost 40,000 people will have rectal cancer, and more than 50,000 deaths will be caused by colorectal cancer.

A team of researchers led by Jairam K. P. Vanamala, associate professor of food sciences at the College of Agricultural Sciences at Pennsylvania State University in State College, set out to examine the effects of grape compounds on colon cancer stem cells.

More specifically, the researchers tested the effect of a combination of resveratrol – a polyphenolic compound found in grapes, red wine, peanuts, and some berries – and grape seed extract.

As the authors write, the study rests on the theory that “most, if not all, cancerous tumors are driven by [cancer stem cells].”

“Cancer stem cells are capable of self-renewal, cellular differentiation, and maintain their stem cell-like characteristics even after invasion and metastasis,” explains lead researcher Prof. Vanamala.

The findings were published in the journal BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine.

Grape extracts halved cancer tumors

Prof. Vanamala and colleagues examined 52 mice with colon cancer tumors. They divided the rodents into three groups: one group was fed the grape compound combination, another group was fed sulindac (an anti-inflammatory drug previously found to reduce tumors in humans), and one group was given a normal diet.

The researchers found that the number of tumors in the mice that had the grape compound diet decreased by 50 percent. This drop was similar to the one seen in the sulindac group, but unlike the anti-inflammatory drug, the grape compounds did not cause any gastrointestinal toxicity.

In vitro, the experiments yielded similar results, determining the “molecular basis for the beneficial effect” of the grape compounds on human cancer stem cells.

The study also found that resveratrol and grape seed extract did not suppress cancer stem cells as effectively when taken separately and in small doses. It seems to be the combined effect of the two that produces the best results.

“The combination of resveratrol and grape seed extract is very effective at killing colon cancer cells,” says Prof. Vanamala. “And […] the combination of these compounds is not toxic to healthy cells.”

 

Colorful diet may prevent colon cancer

Prof. Vanamala suggests that the findings may bring us closer to understanding why cultures that traditionally eat more fruits and vegetables have lower colon cancer rates.

For instance, some studies have hypothesized that the West African diet may be the reason that Nigerians have a much lower rate of colon cancer compared with Caucasians.

Nigeria, along with other African countries, has been shown to have the lowest cancer rates in the world.

Plant-based diets may provide several key compounds that kill off cancer stem cells, says Prof. Vanamala. He also recommends consuming a large variety of colorful fruits and vegetables to prevent colon cancer and other chronic conditions such as type 2 diabetes.

This also connects well with a plant-based diet that is structured so that the person is getting a little bit of different types of plants, of different parts of the plant, and different colors of the plant.

Prof. Jairam K. P. Vanamala

He adds, “This seems to be beneficial for not only promoting bacterial diversity, but also preventing chronic diseases and eliminating the colon cancer stem cells.”

However, Prof. Vanamala also adds that more work is needed to fully understand the anti-cancer mechanism behind grape compounds and other extracts in fruit and vegetables.

The researchers hope that their findings will set the stage for human trials that could test the effects of the grape compounds on colon cancer.

If these trials are successful, the researchers hope that the combination of resveratrol and grape seed extract could be taken in the form of a pill; this may protect against colon cancer and prevent the disease from recurring in those who survived the condition.

Source:

http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/318007.php

Adidas’ All Day fitness app hits iOS and Android devices

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Exactly three months after announcing its All Day fitness app, Adidas is finally launching it in the US. The application, which is available for iOSand Android, focuses on serving up insights about different health aspects, such as mindset, movement, nutrition rest.

 

Adidas says that All Day is designed for “versatile” athletes, meaning that the app’s goal isn’t just to help you with tough workouts, but also showing you anything from quick meditation moves to how to cook healthy recipes. While All Day is only available for those of you in the States right now, the sportswear giant tells Engadget that the app will be coming to other markets later this fall.

Source:

https://www.engadget.com/2017/06/28/adidas-all-day-app-ios-android/

Pharmacy exec blamed for meningitis outbreak that killed 76 gets 9 years

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A 50-year-old pharmacist who once headed a thriving Framingham drug compounding firm was sentenced Monday to nine years in prison after his conviction on racketeering and mail fraud charges.

The sentence was imposed Monday by U.S. District Judge Richard G. Stearns after a lengthy hearing in which victims of a deadly meningitis outbreak caused by Barry Cadden’s company pleaded for the maximum possible sentence.

Stearns, however, rejected the call for a 35-year sentence from federal prosecutors and the plea for a three-year sentence made by Cadden’s lawyer.

Stearns said he would have imposed a more severe sentence had he been convinced that Cadden knew that the drugs being shipped by the New England Compounding Center were potentially lethal.

Stearns also was critical of regulators who failed to act against Cadden’s company sooner. Only the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recognized the magnitude of the outbreak.

Cadden was one of 14 people indicted Dec. 16, 2014, after a two-year federal investigation of the 2012 fungal meningitis outbreak, which sickened 758 patients in 23 states, killing 76 of them. Tennessee, Michigan, Virginia and Indiana were the hardest hit.

Cadden was found guilty March 22 of this year after a 10-week marathon trial. He was convicted on 57 counts of racketeering, conspiracy and mail fraud, but cleared of 25 counts of second-degree murder.

Cadden was president, part owner and chief pharmacist for the NECC, the company blamed for the meningitis outbreak.

Before imposing the sentence, Stearns heard from more than 20 victims of the outbreak, including Patricia Martin, whose mother, Mary, died.

Describing her mother’s death as “horrible,” Martin said her mother was an active person cutting her own lawn and washing her own car until late September 2012 when she was injected with a steroid from Cadden’s company.

Stating that her mother put her trust in the medical establishment, Martin said, “Don’t let my mother’s death be in vain.”

In a tearful presentation just before sentencing, Cadden said it broke his heart to read and hear the statements of victims who suffered because of drugs shipped by his company.

With his voice breaking with emotion, Cadden said he was especially sorry for the toll the tragedy brought on his wife and sons.

In their sentencing memorandum, in which they called for a 35-year prison sentence, prosecutors charged that Cadden displayed an “unconscionable disregard for the lives of the patients using his drugs.”

And they cited a series of so-called aggravating circumstances that justified a harsher than normal sentence. Those included the fact that there were multiple vulnerable victims, that Cadden was an authority figure and his actions and inactions created a “substantial risk of death or bodily injury.”

 

Cadden’s legal team acknowledged that their client was not guiltless but insisted that he had no reason to believe the drugs being shipped by his company were not sterile. They asked Stearns to impose a sentence of three years or less.

Cadden’s lawyers also cited what they described as comparable cases of other drug compounders who were charged criminally but never served any jail time. A Tennessee druggist, David Newbaker, was given a probationary sentence after being cited for many of the same violations as NECC.

In a Texas case, the druggist was charged with a misdemeanor, Cadden’s lawyer, Bruce Singal, noted in a 60-page sentencing memo.

Singal wrote that none of the crimes his client was convicted of “comes anywhere close to warranting a life sentence.”

Two other of Cadden’s co-defendants, Douglas and Lisa Conigliaro, pleaded guilty to vastly reduced charges. Two others were acquitted of all charges. Glenn Chin, 48, is scheduled to go on trial in September and he, like Cadden, has been charged with second-degree murder.

Robert Ronzio, NECC’s director of sales, already has pleaded guilty to a conspiracy charge and awaits sentencing. He testified extensively during Cadden’s trial, delivering key testimony for prosecutors.

After the sentencing victims expressed varying reactions. Martin said she was satisfied with the decision and appreciated the judge’s explanation.

Other victims, however, said they were upset that their testimony appeared to have no impact.

Source:

http://www.tennessean.com/story/news/2017/06/26/pharmacy-boss-blamed-meningitis-outbreak-gets-9-years/429872001/

Top 7 Ways Carrot & Carrot Juice Benefit Your Body

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Carrots are one of the most popular, versatile vegetables in the world! Whether they are eaten raw, cooked or juiced, people from nearly every culture have consumed carrots — in their many forms — throughout history.

While carrots are known for their signature orange color, they actually come in a variety of colors. They can be found in shades of purple, yellow, white and red; however, you will most often see these in the U.S. when you shop at your local farmer’s market.

Carrots get their color from antioxidants called carotenoids. One of these carotenoids is beta carotene, a precursor to active vitamin A that is responsible for many of the carrot and carrot juice benefits that we know about today. Many studies have shown that beta carotene is crucial for improving immunity in the body, protecting skin and eye health, and fighting free radical damage that can cause various forms of chronic diseases like cancer and heart disease. (1)

Carrots have a wealth of valuable nutrition and when you juice them, you can get a concentrated dose of their healing power. From balancing blood sugar, improving blood health, relieving congestion, fighting inflammation and cleansing the kidneys to protecting eyesight, brain function and fighting Leukemia, carrot juice benefits can help nearly every part of your body!


Carrot & Carrot Juice Nutrition

Carrots are one of the highest contributors of vitamin A — the powerhouse vitamin for so much of our body — in the American diet. Carrots also provide ample amounts of vitamins C, D, E and K, as well as many minerals such as magnesium, potassium and calcium. Carrots are also highly nutritious and cleansing due to their high fiber content.

Top 7 Proven Carrot Juice Benefits

Regularly consuming carrots or carrot juice benefits the body in so many amazing ways. Here are some great reasons to include this superfood vegetable in your diet:

1. Protects Eye Health

Three crucial nutrients — beta carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin — within carrots considerably boost eye health. For example, without beta carotene (a form of vitamin A), various forms of eye disorders can occur — including macular degeneration and even blindness. Lutein and zeaxanthin, meanwhile, both work to reduce the risk of age-related vision loss.

Just one cup of chopped carrots provides 400% of your vitamin A needs! Carrots contain vitamin A in the form of beta carotene. Vitamin A is one of the most crucial nutrients necessary for protecting eye health and vision, especially as someone ages.

Vitamin A deficiency can lead first to night blindness, then permanent blindness. Vitamin A deficiency is actually the number one cause of preventable blindness world-wide. Carrots can also reduce your risk of cataracts and macular-degeneration, a common cause of age-related vision loss. (2)

Eating carrots carrot juice regularly will help you maintain healthy eyes and vision throughout your life. If consuming carrots in raw form does not appeal to you, bear in mind that drinking carrot juice carries over the same eye health benefits.

2. High Source of Antioxidants (Especially Beta Carotene)

Carotenoids, found in carrots and other orange vegetables, are potent antioxidants that can help reduce your risk of various forms of temporary illnesses and serious chronic diseases. Carrots and carrot juice benefit the immune system by helping to defend the body from free radical damage, harmful bacteria, viruses and inflammation.

The antioxidants that are responsible for carrot and carrot juice benefits include: vitamin C, beta carotene, lycopene, lutein, zeaxanthin. Carrots are one of the highest natural sources of carotenoid phytochemicals and antioxidant beta carotene,both of which fight cancer by stopping DNA damage, levels of inflammation and cell mutation. (3)

3. Decreases Risk for Heart Disease and Stroke

Eating more deeply colored orange vegetables like carrots decreases the risk of cardiovascular disease, especially in adult women. Regardless of other cardiovascular risks, current research indicates that drinking carrot juice benefits heart health by lowering oxidative stress and improves the body’s defense against various forms of cardiovascular disease. (4)

This effect is likely due to the high antioxidant content that carrots contain. Carrots also work to lower cholesterol, and boost bile production, which increases the body’s ability to digest fat. This not only helps your digestive system to properly absorb nutrition from your food, but also directly impacts the good cholesterol levels in your body — which protects your heart. (5)

4. Helps Protect Against Cancer

Evidence suggests that consuming high levels of carotenoids from fruits and vegetables can be protective in relation to cancer recurrence. Studies show that these antioxidants in carrots may be able to fight leukemia cells and may play a role in reducing your risk of some of the most widespread types of cancers, including ovarian and breast cancer. (6, 7)

One study observed the effects of women with a history of breast cancer consuming eight ounces of fresh orange juice and carrot juice daily for a three-week period.

These results showed that daily intake of fresh carrot juice benefited the body’s defenses against cancer and was an effective approach to increasing levels of protective antioxidant carotenoids in the blood. This, in turn, reduced oxidative stress and inflammation, both of which protect against cancer growth. (8)

5. Important for Maintaining Oral Health

The nutrients found in carrots help improve immunity, including the body’s ability to fight bacteria and toxins that enter through the mouth and live within the gums and teeth. Certain minerals in carrots can be antibacterial and help prevent cavities and tooth decay. (9) Carrots can also help remove plaque and stains from teeth if eaten after meals. Once eaten, the fiber in carrots also boosts immunity by acting as a natural digestive system brush, scrubbing away unwanted bacteria in the gut and promoting better digestion of immune-boosting nutrients.

6. Boosts Skin Health and Wound Healing

Beta carotene is critical for healing any type of wound. Carrots have even been used as a poultice to help heal wounds for centuries due to their high beta carotene content. (10) If you have any type of skin infection, cuts, or other wounds, you’ll find that carrots and carrot juice benefits your skin health by increasing your ability to heal faster and to fight infection and noticeable signs of skin inflammation.

7. Protects Brain Health & Cognitive Function

Carrots and carrot juice benefits brain health by helping to prevent against Alzheimer’s disease, improving memory, and defending against other types of cognitive decline. This is due to carrot’s ability to lower oxidative stress in the brain that can weaken nerve signaling capacity.

 

Source:

https://draxe.com/carrot-juice/

French Instagram fitness star killed by exploding whipped cream canister

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Rebecca Burger, a French fitness blogger, has died after a whipped cream dispenser exploded into her chest.

Burger, who had 160,000 Instagram followers and more than 55,000 Facebook fans, died over the weekend.

Citing local reports in France, the BBC reported that she died of cardiac arrest after the accident, despite being attended to by medics.

Her family announced her death on Facebook, calling it a “domestic accident.” A warning about what her family described as a faulty dispenser involved in her death has also been posted on her Instagram. The message said the canister “exploded and struck Rebecca’s chest, causing her death”.

 

The dispensers shoot gas into a metal capsule, which keeps the pressure high. The BBC said a French consumer group had warned readers for years about faulty connectors that could break, allowing the gas capsules to be expelled at high speed.

The BBC said such dispensers were involved in enough accidents that the government office for consumers issued a warning, saying the accidents stretched back as far as 2010 and could occur even after years of use.

Source:

http://www.businessinsider.com/french-instagram-fitness-star-rebecca-burger-killed-by-exploding-whipped-cream-canister-2017-6

The future of healthcare: AI, augmented reality and drug-delivering drones

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Imagine being paralyzed and having an implanted microchip that could action a message from your brain to move your prosthetic arm. Or a diagnostic system that could pick up Alzheimer’s a decade before you develop any symptoms. Or a 3D printing machine that could print a pill with a combination of drugs tailored just for you.

Sound far-fetched? Then meet Dr Daniel Kraft, a Harvard-trained oncologist-cum-entrepreneur-cum-healthcare futurologist. The faculty chair for medicine and founder of Exponential Medicine at the Silicon Valley-based Singularity University, no one could be more serious – or ambitious – about the revolutionary impact that technology will have on the future of healthcare.

The internet of things, constant connectivity, ever cheaper hardware, big data, machine learning: Kraft’s list of converging “meta-trends” goes on. “This set of technologies, especially when meshed together, offers a real opportunity to reshape and reinvent healthcare around the planet,” he says.

Kraft’s vision is of a patient-centred, tech-led healthcare system (as opposed to “sickcare”, as he defines the current system) that promises to turn the medical world on its head. But what implications does it hold for future business of healthcare?

Big pharma is one of the first in line for a shake-up, Kraft warns. Today drug firms’ profits are based on blockbuster drugs for pervasive diseases. But what if medical science reveals (as it is doing) that there are really hundreds of sub-types of diabetes, say, or lung cancer? And what if a patient’s full genome sequence can show the likelihood of a blockbuster treatment not working?

“There’s a spectrum of diseases with different molecular pathways and pharma is going to have to adapt to smaller markets in terms of individual drugs,” Kraft says.

On the flipside, the prospect of people being able to take part in clinical trials on their smartphones promises to drastically speed up the time drugs can get to market. Prescribing an app along with a pill will also become commonplace, he suggests, enabling patients to keep on track with their medicine and adjust their dosage if required. Both potentially promise big returns for the pharmaceutical industry.

Drug distribution is set for a radical overhaul too. Digital device manufacturers are already experimenting with so-called “implantables” that use bioelectric sensors to track patients’ vital signs and release a drug dose as and when required. At the other end of the spectrum, drones are now being used to deliver drugs to remote areas or disaster zones. Matternet, one of 50 or so start-up firms to have spun out of Singularity University, has been doing exactly that in Haiti recently.

Kraft warns that radical change is afoot for healthcare providers as well. Imagine a scenario where patients can compare the results of different hospitals or even individual doctors? Or where patients don’t need to come to a clinic once a month for an electrocardiogram but instead wear a smart Band-Aid “patch” that sends the same information 24/7 to their doctor’s surgery? Patient power, in other words.

Source:

https://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/2016/nov/01/the-future-of-healthcare-ai-augmented-reality-and-drug-delivering-drones

Soulmates and Unconditional Love

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Are you searching for a soulmate or unconditional love? Your quest can set you on an impossible journey to find an ideal partner. The problem is twofold: People and relationships can never achieve perfection. Often unconditional and conditional love are confused.

Usually, we yearn for unconditional love because we didn’t receive it in childhood and fail to give it to ourselves. Of all relationships, parental love, particularly maternal love, is the most enduring form of unconditional love. (In prior generations, paternal love was thought of as conditional.) But in fact, most parents withdraw their love when they’re overstressed or when their children misbehave. To a child, even timeouts can feel like emotional abandonment. Thus, rightly or wrongly, most parents at times only love their children conditionally.

Is Unconditional Love Possible?

 

Unlike romantic love, unconditional love does not seek pleasure or gratification. Unconditional love is more a state of receptivity and allowing, which arises from our own “basic goodness,” says Trungpa Rimpoche. It’s the total acceptance of someone — a powerful energy emanating from the heart.

Love that is unconditional transcends time, place, behavior, and worldly concerns. We don’t decide whom we love, and sometimes don’t know why. The motives and reasons of the heart are unfathomable, writes Carson McCullers:

The most outlandish people can be the stimulus for love. . . The preacher may love a fallen woman. The beloved may be treacherous, greasy-headed, and given to evil habits. Yes, and the lover may see this as clearly as anyone else — but that does not affect the evolution of his love one whit. ~ The Ballad of the Sad Café (2005), p. 26

McCullers explains that most of us prefer to love than be loved:

. . . the value and quality of any love is determined solely by the lover himself. It is for this reason that most of us would rather love than be loved. Almost everyone wants to be the lover. And the curt truth is that, in a deep secret way, the state of being beloved is intolerable to many. ~ ibid

Ideally, the giving and receiving of unconditional love is a unitary experience. Couples experience this most frequently when falling in love. It also happens when someone fearlessly opens up to us in an intimate setting. It’s a being-to-being recognition of that which is unconditional in each of us, our humanity, as if to lovingly say, “Namaste,” meaning: “The God (or divine consciousness) within me salutes the God within you.” When we delight in another’s being-ness, boundaries may dissolve in what feels like spiritual experience. This allows energy to flow into places of resistance that surround our heart and can be deeply healing. It can happen during moments of vulnerability during therapy.

 

Yet, inevitably, these occurrences don’t last, and we return to our ordinary ego state — our conditioned self. We all have our preferences, idiosyncrasies, and particular tastes and needs, which have been conditioned by our upbringing, religion, society, and experiences. We also have limits about what we will and won’t accept in a relationship. When we love conditionally, it’s because we approve of our partner’s beliefs, needs, desires, and lifestyle. They match up with ours and give us comfort, companionship, and pleasure.

We’re fortunate to meet someone we can love conditionally and, at times, unconditionally. The combination of both forms of love in one relationship makes our attraction intense. It’s the closest we come to finding a soulmate.

Confusing Conditional and Unconditional Love

It causes stress and conflict when conditional and unconditional love don’t coexist. Frequently, people tend to confuse the two. I’ve met spouses who were great companions and best friends, but divorced because their relationship marriage lacked the intimate connection of unconditional love. This can be helped in marriage counseling when individuals learn empathy and the language of intimacy. (See my blog, “Your Intimacy Index.”) But it can lead to frustration and unhappiness if we try to force our heart to love unconditionally when other aspects of the relationship are unacceptable or important needs go unmet.

On the other hand, some couples fight all the time, but stay together because they share a deep, unconditional love for each other. In couples counseling, they can learn to communicate in healthier, non-defensive ways that allow their love to flow. I’ve seen couples married over 40 years experience a second honeymoon that’s better than their first!

Other times, the problems in the relationship concern basic values or needs, and the couple, or one partner, decides to separate despite their love. It’s a mistake to believe that unconditional love means we should accept abuse, infidelity, addiction, or other problems we can’t tolerate. The saying, “Love is not enough” is accurate. The relationship ends, but the individuals often go on loving each other — even despite prior violence — which mystifies onlookers, but it’s okay. Closing our heart in self-protection only hurts us. It limits our joy and aliveness.

Dating

Dating stirs up unrealistic hopes of finding constant, unconditional love. We’re liable to go from one lover to the next looking for our ideal soulmate. We may find someone who meets all of our conditions, yet doesn’t open our heart.

Or, unconditional love may naturally arise early on, but then we wonder if we can live with the other person day in and day out. Our conditional concerns and our struggles to accommodate each other’s needs and personal habits can eclipse the short-lived bliss of unconditional love.

The reverse can happen, too. Sometimes, during the romantic phase of love, people commit to marriage, not knowing their partner well. They don’t realize he or she lacks the necessary ingredients that are required to make a marriage work, such as cooperation, self-esteem, and communication and mutual problem-solving skills.

I don’t believe there is only one soulmate destined for each of us. It might seem so, because the conditional and unconditional rarely overlap. According to researcher and psychologist Robert Firestone, “It is difficult to find individuals who are mature enough emotionally to manifest love on a consistent basis. It is even more problematic to accept love when one does receive it.” Firestone theorizes that couples try to maintain an ersatz version of their initial love through a “fantasy bond,” replaying romantic words and gestures that lack authenticity and vulnerability. Partners feel lonely and disconnected from each other, even if the marriage looks good to others.

Opening the Heart

Unconditional love isn’t a high ideal we need to achieve. Actually, striving after it removes us from the experience. It’s always present as the unconditioned part of us — our “pure, primordial presence,” writes Buddhist psychologist John Welwood. He believes that we can glimpse it through mindfulness meditation. By observing our breath, we become more present and can appreciate our basic goodness. In mediation and in therapy, we find those places we choose to hide from ourselves and others.

In trying to reform ourselves, we necessarily create inner conflict, which alienates us from our true self and self-acceptance. (See Conquering Shame and Codependency: 8 Steps to Freeing the True You.) It reflects the belief that we can love ourselves provided we change. That is conditional love. It motivates us to seek unconditional love from others, when we need to give it to ourselves. The more we fight against ourselves, the more we constrict our hearts. Yet, it’s these disowned and unwanted parts of ourselves, which often give us the most problems, that are in the greatest need of our love and attention. Instead of self-judgment, exploration and empathy are necessary. People often enter therapy to change themselves, but hopefully come to accept themselves. Trying to change stems from shame and the premise that we’re inadequate and unlovable.

Source:

https://psychcentral.com/lib/soulmates-and-unconditional-love/

Apple Watch to include game-changing health features

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There’s no doubt about it — the Apple Watch is a hit. While Apple has not disclosed sales numbers, smart money has the device, now in its second generation, at over 25 million units sold. That not only means the watch is a scorcher that is now beating the initial trajectory of the iPhone, but recent estimates also crown it the world’s top-selling fitness device, outpacing dedicated fitness trackers from the likes of Fitbit in regards to market share. The Apple Watch has generated more revenue since its debut than the entire Swiss watch industry during that period of time, which is an incredible achievement.

The fitness aspect of the watch has always been a huge focus, and we have been told by a source familiar with Apple’s plans that the company is looking to introduce a game-changing feature in an upcoming new version of the Apple Watch.

While there are countless uses for this new category of device that places a smartphone on your wrist, one of the most popular is fitness monitoring and tracking, an intense area of focus for Apple. There is most likely not a single consumer fitness product in the world that has had more internal testing, validation and investment than the Apple Watch, and this doesn’t seem to be slowing. Our source indicates that Apple has hired 200 PhDs in the past year as part of the company’s laser lock on improving and innovating in the health space with Apple Watch.

It has been rumored that Apple is interested in glucose monitoring, and it appears that the time may now be right. Previous rumors have stated that Apple might only be able to achieve this through a separate device that might complement the watch, however BGR has learned that this might not be accurate.

According to our source, Apple’s sights are now set on the epidemic of diabetes, and the company plans to introduce a game-changing glucose monitoring feature in an upcoming Apple Watch. An estimated 30 million people suffer from diabetes in the US alone, according to the American Diabetes Association, so Apple’s efforts could lead to a historic achievement in the world of health and fitness.

Currently, the only way to properly measure blood sugar levels is by using a blood sample, or by using a device that penetrates the skin. It’s uncomfortable, difficult and painful, and there are not presently any widely available noninvasive methods that are accurate. Apple isn’t stopping at just glucose monitoring, however.

Apple also plans to introduce interchangeable “smart watch bands” that add various functionality to the Apple Watch without added complexity, and without increasing the price of the watch itself. This could also mean that the glucose monitoring feature will be implemented as part of a smart band, rather than being built into the watch hardware.

A camera band that adds a camera to the watch is another possibility, or a band that contains a battery to extend battery life for wearers who want even more longevity, even though the Apple Watch’s battery performance is already class-leading. One can imagine the other types of smart bands that might be possible with this approach. This strategy might also make it easier for Apple to work with the FDA on approval of a medical device that the company could pre-announce, as opposed to letting a new Apple Watch leak months or even years in advance if it was to be submitted to the regulatory administration.

Another interesting quote from our source is that Apple has “identified the right part of the body and there’s so much more they can and intend to do with the watch.” While glucose monitoring would be a huge first step in Apple’s goal of continuing to make the Apple Watch indispensable, it’s not hard to imagine a near future where the watch is the hub of our digital and physical lives. It would monitor multiple aspects of the wearer’s health, but also replace smartphones when combined with some sort of augmented reality glasses or contact lenses, alongside AirPods in our ears.

Source:

Exclusive: Upcoming Apple Watch to include game-changing health features

Jury awards record-setting $110.5M in baby powder lawsuit

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More than a year after a Missouri jury ordered Johnson & Johnson to pay $72 million to the family of a woman who died from ovarian cancer linked to the company’s talcum-based products, another jury in the state awarded a Virginia woman a record-setting $110.5 million in a similar lawsuit. 

Thursday’s jury ruling is the fourth in a string of cases involving allegations that Johnson & Johnson ignored a possible link between cancer and its talcum-based products.

The most recent case, the Associated Press reports, involves 62-year-old Lois Slemp, who was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 2012.

According to the lawsuit, the woman claims her illness was caused by more than 40 years of using Johnson & Johnson’s talcum powder products, including baby powder. She alleges that Johnson & Johnson concealed the possibility that its baby powder and other talcum-based products could cause cancer.

The woman’s lawyers cited much of the same research used in previous cases. The studies showed that woman who used the products had a greater risk of being diagnosed with cancer.

Studies going back to 1971 have suggested this link exists. In fact, at least one lawsuit against Johnson & Johnson cites a 1982 study on the issue that found a 92% increased risk in ovarian cancer with women who used talc-based products around their genitals, the researcher behind that study directly advised a J&J doctor to place a warning label on their products.

Johnson & Johnson and other companies have continued to defend the use of talcum powder in feminine hygiene products; however, the condom industry halted the mineral’s use in the mid-1990s amid the growing concerns about its link to ovarian cancer risk.

Johnson & Johnson tells the AP that it will appeal the $110.5 million verdict, noting that it disputed the scientific evidence behind the case.

The company has previously appealed three cases, including the $72 million verdict handed down last year. Those cases remain under appeal.

Thursday’s case is just one of around 1,200 cases currently being pursued against J&J in courts in Missouri and New Jersey.

Source:

Jury Awards Woman $110.5M In Johnson & Johnson Talcum Powder Lawsuit

The Real Problem With the Health Care Bill

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With the American Health Care Act headed to the Senate — and possibly President Trump’s desk — it’s important to step back from the debate over the bill’s details and recognize two essential truths about American health care.

First, health care in the United States costs much more than in other developed countries, and on average the outcomes are worse. Second, any plan that focuses primarily on reducing the cost of insurance will inevitably lead to less access to care. Indeed, whatever Republicans say about high-risk pools and other ways their plan covers vulnerable people, the fact is that millions will lose coverage.

Health care in the United States is more expensive because, unlike the systems in other countries, ours rests on the idea that profits and quality health care go hand in hand. As a result, government programs working with our existing structure of for-profit insurance companies can expand and improve coverage (like the Affordable Care Act) or offer lower insurance premiums (like the new Republican plan). But they can’t do both.

Supporters of the A.C.A., also known as Obamacare, talked a good game about “bending the cost curve,” but that was never a primary concern. The goal, largely achieved, was to expand access and to mandate coverage for essential health benefits and pre-existing conditions.

In contrast, the thrust of the Republican bill is to lower the cost of insurance by removing the guarantees of the A.C.A. States would be able to exempt any of the essential health benefits from insurance mandates, and they would also be allowed to exclude patients with pre-existing conditions. Millions are likely to lose their health insurance, but the young and generally healthy would pay much lower premiums.

In short, the two plans are not different takes on the same problem. They are different takes on different problems.

And the two problems are not equal concerns. Yes, the price of insurance is an issue — though a properly designed plan will at least move most of those costs off individuals and small businesses and onto the government’s shoulders.

Source:

Scientists May Have Finally Found A Way To Cure HIV

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“This protection would be long term,” said first author Jia Xie.

The researchers, led by senior study author Richard Lerner, plan to collaborate with investigators at City of Hope’s Center for Gene Therapy to evaluate this new therapy in efficacy and safety tests, as required by federal regulations, before testing in patients.

“City of Hope currently has active clinical trials of gene therapy for AIDS using blood stem cell transplantation, and this experience will be applied to the task of bringing this discovery to the clinic,” said researcher John A. Zaia. “The ultimate goal will be the control of HIV in patients with AIDS without the need for other medications.”

“We at TSRI are honored to be able to collaborate with physicians and scientists at City of Hope, whose expertise in transplantation in HIV patients should hopefully allow this therapy to be used in people,” added Lerner.

The new TSRI technique offers a significant advantage over therapies where antibodies float freely in the bloodstream at a relatively low concentration. Instead, antibodies in the new study hang on to a cell’s surface, blocking HIV from accessing a crucial cell receptor and spreading infection.

Xie called it the “neighbor effect.” An antibody stuck nearby is more effective than having many antibodies floating throughout the bloodstream. “You don’t need to have so many molecules in one cell to be effective,” he said.

Before testing their system against HIV, the scientists used rhinovirus (responsible for many cases of the common cold) as a model. They used a vector called lentivirus to deliver a new gene to cultured human cells. This gene instructed cells to synthesise antibodies that bind to the human cell receptor (ICAM-1) that rhinovirus needs. With the antibodies monopolising that site, the virus cannot enter the cell to spread infection.

“This is really a form of cellular vaccination,” said Lerner.

Because the delivery system can’t reach exactly 100 percent of cells, the finished product was a mix of engineered and unengineered cells. The researchers then added rhinovirus to these cell populations and waited to see what would happen.

The vast majority of cells died in about two days. In dishes with only unengineered cells, the population never recovered. There was an initial die-off in the mixed, engineered/unengineered populations, too, but their numbers quickly bounced back. After 125 hours, these cell populations were back up to around the same levels as cells in an undiseased control group.

In essence, the researchers had forced the cells to compete in Darwinian, “survival-of-the-fittest” selection in a lab dish. Cells without antibody protection died off, leaving protected cells to survive and multiply, passing on the protective gene to new cells.

This success led the researchers to test the same technique against HIV

To infect a person, all strains of HIV need to bind with a cell surface receptor called CD4. So the scientists tested antibodies that could potentially protect this receptor on the very immune cells normally killed by HIV. “This research is possible because of the ability to select specialized antibodies from combinatorial antibody libraries,” said Lerner.

Again, their technique worked. After introducing cells to the virus, the researchers ended up with an HIV- resistant population. The antibodies recognized the CD4 binding site, blocking HIV from getting to the receptor.

The scientists further confirmed that these tethered antibodies blocked HIV more effectively than free-floating, soluble antibodies in experiments led by study co-authors Devin Sok of the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative (IAVI) and TSRI Professor Dennis R. Burton, who is also scientific director of the IAVI Neutralizing Antibody Center and of the National Institutes of Health’s Center for HIV/AIDS Vaccine Immunology and Immunogen Discovery (CHAVI-ID) at TSRI.

Joseph Alvarnas, M.D., director of Value-Based Analytics at City of Hope, explained how the TSRI technique could help patients, who, despite treatment with anti-retroviral drugs, still suffer from higher rates of diseases, such as cancers.

“HIV is treatable but not curable; this remains a disease that causes a lot of suffering. That makes the case for why these technologies are so important,” he said.

In addition to potentially collaborating with City of Hope, Xie said the next step in this research is to try engineering antibodies to protect a different receptor on the cell surface.

The study is published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences

Source:

http://www.indiatimes.com/health/scientists-may-have-finally-found-a-way-to-cure-hiv-275511.html

 

Supercharge healthcare with artificial intelligence

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Pattern-recognition algorithms can transform horses into zebras; winter scenes can become summer; artificial intelligence algorithms can generate art; robot radiologists can analyze your X-rays with remarkable precision.

We have reached the point where pattern-recognition algorithms and artificial intelligence (A.I.) are more accurate than humans at the visual diagnosis and observation of X-rays, stained breast cancer slides and other medical signs involving general correlations between normal and abnormal health patterns.

Before we run off and fire all the doctors, let’s better understand the A.I. landscape and the technology’s broad capabilities. A.I. won’t replace doctors — it will help to empower them and extend their reach, improving patient outcomes.

An evolution of machine learning

The challenge with artificial intelligence is that no single and agreed-upon definition exists. Nils Nilsson defined A.I. as “activity devoted to making machines intelligent, and intelligence is that quality that enables an entity to function appropriately and with foresight in its environment.” But that definition isn’t close to describing how A.I. evolved.

Artificial intelligence began with the Turing Test, proposed in 1950 by Alan Turing, the scientist, cryptanalyst and theoretical biologist. Since then, rapid progress has been made over the last 75 years, advancing A.I. capabilities.

Isaac Asimov proposed the Three Laws of Robotics in 1950. The first A.I. program was coded in 1951. In 1959, MIT began research in the field of artificial intelligence. GM introduced the first robot into its production assembly line in 1961. The 1960s were transformative, with the first machine learning program written and the first demonstration of an A.I. program which understood natural language, and the first chatbot emerged. In the 1970s, the first autonomous vehicle was designed at the Stanford A.I. lab. Healthcare applications for A.I. were first introduced in 1974, along with an expert system for medical diagnostics. The LISP language emerged out of the 1980s, with natural networks integrating with autonomous vehicles. IBM’s famous Deep Blue beat Gary Kasparov at chess in 1997. And by 1999, the world was experimenting with A.I.-based “domesticated” robots.

Innovation was further inspired in 2004 when DARPA hosted the first design competition for autonomous vehicles in the commercial sector. By 2005, big tech companies, including IBM, Microsoft, Google and Facebook, were actively investing in commercial applications, and the first recommendation engines surfaced. The highlight of 2009 was Google’s first self-driving car, some three decades after the first autonomous vehicle was tested at Stanford.

The fascination of narrative science, for A.I. to write reports, was demonstrated in 2010, and IBM Watson was crowned a Jeopardy champion in 2011. Narrative science quickly evolved into personal assistants with the likes of Siri, Google, Now and Cortana. Elon Musk and others launched OpenAI, to discover and enact the path to safe artificial general intelligence in 2015 — to find a friendly A.I. In early 2016, Google’s DeepMind defeated legendary Go player Lee Se-dol in a historic victory.

Source:

http://www.cio.com/article/3191593/artificial-intelligence/supercharge-healthcare-with-artificial-intelligence.html

Ahead of Elon Musk, this self-made millionaire already launched a company to merge your brain with computers

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Silicon Valley titan Elon Musk has announced that he will be launching yet another company, Neuralink, which will focus on connecting the human brain to computers.

With his deep pockets and bold ambitions, Musk, the CEO of SpaceX and Tesla, attracts attention whatever he tries. But Musk is not the first to experiment with neural prosthetics. In August, self-made millionaire Bryan Johnson launched a company that seeks to connect the brain with computer intelligence.

Johnson’s company, Kernel, a Los Angeles start-up with 20 employees, is working to make “chips” to insert in the human brain. These chips, which are actually neurotechological hardware designed to read and write neural code, will be used at first for individuals with diseases or deficiencies to restore normal brain function.

 

In the future, Johnson expects the technology to progress so that even healthy humans can get chips implanted in their brains — and become, in effect, superhuman.

Implanting computing power in the brain could help humans have near-perfect memory, read books instantaneously and communicate with other implanted humans telepathically, or without speaking, explains Johnson.

 

For the first generation of implantable neural prosthetics, a neurologist will have to surgically implant the computer chip into a person’s brain. The goal for the future, however, is to be able to implant chips into human brains laparoscopically and using other less invasive methods.

Johnson believes that our generation will be defined by the way we wrestle with the prospect of merging humans with machine technology.

“A generation’s time and place is defined by the debates they have. So, for example, we have civil rights and human rights and marriage rights and abortion rights. I think the coming discussion for our society will be evolution rights,” Johnson tells CNBC.

As a society, humans will have to decide whether it is acceptable to opt for genetic or neurological enhancement once the technology becomes available. Also, we will have to debate how those rights are managed and how technology is distributed. What will be legal? Who can access the new technology first?

Johnson expects the conversation to break on national borders. Some countries will allow genetic enhancements and others will not.

“There’s a general reluctance for humans to adopt certain forms of enhancement,” says Johnson. For example, when plastic surgery first became technically possible, it was largely feared and relegated to the fringes. Now, however, cosmetic surgery is commonplace, says Johnson. “I think we will see the same thing happen as we gain more powerful forms of enhancements in genetics and neurological enhancement and physical augmentation.”

HOW JOHNSON MADE HIS FORTUNE

To launch Kernel, Johnson, now 39, contributed $100 million of his own money. That’s not money he was born with. In his early 20s, Johnson struggled.

“I was broke. And I had two kids at home and I couldn’t pay my bills. I was up to my eyeballs in debt and I couldn’t find a job. I applied for 60 jobs. Nobody would hire me. Nobody would even give me an interview,” he says.

At the time, Johnson emailed 50 wealthy individuals introducing himself, saying that he was a hard worker, smart and hungry for a chance. He got no responses.

Finally, Johnson found a job selling credit-card processing door-to-door. He was paid on commission. He pounded the pavement and broke all previous selling records, he says. He also came up with an idea for a business.

“I just found this broken industry in payments and I thought there’s this amazing opportunity to build an exceptional company,” he says. Johnson went on to found and launch Braintree, a credit-card processing company, which he grew and sold to eBay in 2013 for $800 million.

Financially liberated, Johnson was driven by his desire to make an impact on the world. He decided that unlocking the brain was the most noble and challenging goal.

“THERE’S THIS HUGE POTENTIAL TO CO-EVOLVE WITH OUR TECHNOLOGY.”-Bryan Johnson, founder and CEO of Kernel

“I arrived at the conclusion that human intelligence was the most consequential technological advancement ever — that everything we are, everything we seek to become, everything we create is a result of our brain,” says Johnson. And our brains are fundamentally the same as they were a couple thousand years ago, he says. “On the other hand, we have this form of intelligence we have given birth to in artificial intelligence, which is improving very rapidly.

“And there’s this huge potential to co-evolve with our technology.”

TAPPING INTO A MULTIBILLION-DOLLAR MARKET

While it may take people a while to get used to the idea of implanting chips in the brain, Johnson expects that when the idea normalizes, the demand will be enormous.

“The market for implantable neural prosthetics including cognitive enhancement and treatment of neurological dysfunction will likely be one of, if not the largest, industrial sectors in history,” says Johnson, in a Medium post he wrote announcing his own investment in the company. He expects Kernel to raise $1 billion from private and public sources.

And while Kernel is not making any money yet, Johnson says if even one product goes on the market, it could mean billions of dollars in sales.

In the past two decades, Johnson has gone from broke and unable to land an interview to working in the same space as Elon Musk, arguably one of the world’s most influential inventors.

As for competing with Musk, though, Johnson isn’t worried. “I couldn’t be more excited that Neuralink will join Kernel in this extremely challenging and promising pursuit,” says Johnson. “The neurotech industry will be one of the largest to ever emerge. I’m happy others will be pushing the field forward as well.”

Source:

http://www.cnbc.com/2017/04/12/self-made-millionaire-leads-elon-musk-in-fusing-brains-and-computers.html

Would you trust your life to an ‘autopilot’ robo-doctor?

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I am in an aeroplane crossing the Atlantic Ocean as I write this. We took off from Heathrow Airport more than three hours ago. By now, it’s likely the plane’s captain and crew are not physically in control of the aircraft. Something as complex as flying a metal tube packed with more than 300 living souls at 12,000 meters and 900kph is left to a computer and a set of algorithms. The autopilot.

Such a device is badly needed in our hospital wards. Critical patients needing 24/7 intensive care could certainly benefit from data-based approaches that could leverage on state-of-the-art analytics and AI.

For instance, a wise intensive care unit (ICU) nurse once told me: “Don’t get sick, but if you do get sick, don’t do it at night.” Data suggests evenings and weekends are not a good time to fall ill due to an increase of the patient’s risk of death. If our healthcare professionals had their capabilities augmented like the pilot in charge of my plane (who is able to rest now, so he can be 100 per cent focused during the approach and landing), we could not only get sick anytime without an increased risk of dying, we would also improve patient outcomes and decrease overall costs for the healthcare system. Just consider the upcoming shortage of medical professionals in the NHS and in the US, and the fact that medical errors are already the third-highest cause of death in the US (after heart disease and cancer) with 251,000 deaths in 2013.

Many healthcare organisations are working on potential AI applications. Research groups such as the Stanford Vision Lab are devoting efforts to the general use of AI in healthcare, and startups such as Etiometry in Boston and Better Care in Barcelona are focusing on critical care hospital units. Etiometry’s goal is to develop a predictive analytics platform to improve the quality of care in the ICU. Better Care is focusing on a software platform to capture biomedical data around the ICU patient – incorporating medical knowledge and algorithms. This is also an area of focus for companies such as Google, IBM and Qualcomm.

In the ICU, data from a patient is extensive and complex. But AI deals well with complexity. Based on a patient’s data, an AI platform could ensure the most basic mission of the ICU team (“keep the patient alive”): provide descriptive analytics for “what is going on”, predictive analytics for “what’s going to happen” and prescriptive analytics for “what shall you do”.

The first layer with descriptive analytics would help them understand “what is going on” with a specific patient within the context of thousands of other patients with that same condition. Crunching all that data in real time is an example of a skill set that is not yet available to human beings. The second layer would allow them to allocate resources according to “what’s going to happen” and the progressing complications of patients who are fighting for their lives. Finally, as the presence of AI in the ICU becomes the norm, the availability (and quality) of data would allow for the use of prescriptive analytics as a complement to trial and error that is still predominant when managing critical patients.

Of course, hospitals are not ready for this yet. Just consider that, in 2016, most world-leading hospitals still had no internet access in their operating rooms. Furthermore, doctors have historically been reluctant and conservative when it comes to the introduction of new technologies. To some extent, technology companies have also made the mistake of suggesting that AI will replace doctors – and no trade group likes to feel threatened. We cannot expect healthcare professionals to be free from error. It has been their creative thinking and diligent care that has driven our healthcare systems to greater heights. It has also been their human problem-solving that has allowed us to develop novel medical technologies, contributing to increased life expectancy.

The first step should be in complementing our doctors, not replacing them. Just imagine an ICU room with three screens reporting 20 essential parameters in real time – both invasive and non-invasive monitoring – along with data coming in from the labs, imaging tests and the discrete measurements and clinical observations made by healthcare professionals. The potential in this scenario is not just to mimic the doctors, but to perform tasks that no doctor can manage. If we are able to develop systems that enhance their capabilities and allow them to provide their patients better care, we will be in a win-win situation for healthcare professionals, patients and taxpayers.

Source:

http://www.wired.co.uk/article/autodoctor-artificial-intelligence-healthcare

Healthy ‘Alkaline Acid Diet’ found to be Effective even in Chemotherapy, Research Suggests!

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The alkaline acid diet is the newest trend among Hollywood celebrities today. This diet is also known as alkaline ash diet or alkaline diet, which can help you to easily lose weight while staying healthy. What’s more surprising is that this diet will also help you to refrain from having a serious problem like cancer and arthritis, research suggests.

There are a lot of studies on how effective this alkaline acid diet is and the concept of this is that the more you eat acid-forming foods like meat, wheat, refined sugar and processed foods, the higher the possibility that your body produces acid, which tips your pH balance out.

Drinking alcohol and coffee and smoking tobacco can also affect the level of acid in our body. On the other hand, eating alkaline-forming foods like vegetables and fruits can help you to maintain healthy balance life.

Balancing your pH through alkaline acid diet could lead to various health benefits. In a journal published by the US National Library of Medicine National Institute of Health, with the right supplementation of alkaline in the body it could improve chronic low back pain, treat diabetes and osteoarthritis. While some studies found that this kind of diet can make chemotherapy drugs more effective.

Experts suggest that this alkaline acid diet is ranked as 31st best diet. The general rule for this diet is strictly 80 percent alkaline intake and 20 percent acid products. When practiced and applied in every meal can associate with healthy living.

However, even though it could be the best alkaline diet, without taking a step to be physically fit it won’t be effective as expected. It might give you a balanced pH and healthy lifestyle, but once decide to do physical activity it improves your energy level and lowers the risk of heart diseases.

Source:

http://www.latinoshealth.com/articles/26818/20170310/healthy-alkaline-acid-diet-found-to-be-effective-even-in-chemotherapy-research-suggests.htm

Alkaline water without having to leave your house

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“Drinking enough water isn’t really enough,” Mike Wingenbach said. “You have to drink the right kind of water. Water that will help buffer acid, remove toxins and is easily absorbed by your body.” As an independent retailer of one of the best home alkaline water systems on the market, Wingenbach knows a thing or two about the benefits of having alkaline water in your home.

LivingWater is a countertop unit that hooks up to your faucet, providing acid-buffering alkaline water for drinking and cooking right in your kitchen. The acidic water is also good for cleaning without chemicals and watering plants.

So what exactly does drinking alkaline water do for your body? “When you drink alkaline water regularly, you’re helping your body to hydrate itself as well as flush out toxins and waste products,” Wingenbach said. “If you’re trying to lose weight, you may get a boost there as well. Overall, there’s no better way to help stay healthy.”

The unit works by using two filters. “The first filter is a carbon and sediment filter, which removes unpleasant tastes and odors,” Wingenbach said. “The second filter is a carbon and food grade calcium sulfite filter to ensure proper mineralization of the water using good calcium.”

The LivingWater unit is easy to install to your existing faucet and doesn’t require any special plumbing. “Having a LivingWater is like owning a limitless supply of alkaline, ionized, healthy water,” Wingenbach said. “You get pH-balancing, healthy alkaline water for drinking and cooking, strong alkaline water for washing vegetables, and acidic water for cleaning.” LivingWater has eight different pH levels, ranging from 4.0 acidic water to 10.0 alkaline water.

“I see a lot of interest in alkaline water locally,” Wingenbach said. “I see people lugging around and filling up 5-gallon jugs at the local water depots. With the LivingWater, you make an initial investment but it will end up paying for itself after a few years. And you don’t have to leave your house to get the best tasting and healthiest water available.”

Wingenbach is a believer because he has had his own LivingWater machine for nearly seven years. “All you need to do is replace the filters once a year,” he said of the maintenance required.  The filters are easy to remove and can be replaced with a simple twist and lock design. “The LivingWater can last 10 years. I personally am so glad I made the investment. I really think I feel better today than I did 25 years ago.”

He believes so much in the product that he has a proposition for buyers. “I will assist in setting up the living water machine,” Wingenbach said. “Try it for 10 days and see for yourself. If you decide it’s not for you, you can return the machine for a full refund, no questions asked. There is zero risk to you. “

The LivingWater retails for $2,199.00, and comes without any worry about complicated or intense maintenance. “LivingWater is designed for easy maintenance,” Wingenbach said. “It has an automatic cleaning cycle every 12 minutes of use.” The unit also comes with a five-year limited warranty.

Now through April 30, 2017 Wingenbach is offering readers of The Coast News $100 off the price of the unit as well as free maintenance for one year, free shipping, a replacement filter set and a complete cleaning kit. 

For more information, visit Lifestylefocusenterprise.net or call Mike Wingenbach at (760) 612-1667.

Alkaline water: Should you make the switch?

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It doesn’t seem enough to high five ourselves for getting eight glasses of water down the hatch these days. Now it seems we ought to ensure our water has the appropriate pH so we don’t accidentally tip our body into an acidic state.

Alkaline water, aka ionized water, is getting plenty of attention in the natural health sector. Its proponents claim the fact it has a pH of around 9 could not just increase our but even prevent cancer and diabetes.

(If you forgot high-school chemistry, pH is a measure of acidity or alkalinity. On the pH scale of 1 to 14, 7 is the pH of pure water; every whole value below that is increasingly acidic, and every whole value above it is more alkaline”. A healthy human body has a pH of a little over 7.) 

Alkaline water is created by running water through an “ionising” machine that contains electrodes that are said to re-align your water in a bid to remove toxins and increase the pH.

The idea of drinking alkaline water or following an alkalizing diet is that the Western diet is highly acidic, which makes for a breeding ground for infection and disease.

If we can take steps to make our bodies more alkaline, such as by drinking alkaline water, then they say we’ll be in a much healthier state.

According to Choice, drinking alkaline water won’t harm you — but it probably won’t actually make any difference to your internal pH, given our bodies are experts at keeping our pH between 7.35 and 7.45 no matter what we eat or drink.

“If the blood pH goes above this range (that is, more alkaline) the lungs help regain control by retaining carbon dioxide (you breathe more slowly) and thereby increasing the carbonic acid levels of the blood, while the kidneys increase excretion of bicarbonate in urine, making it more alkaline,” Choice writes on its website.

Kara Landau, the Travelling Dietitian, agrees that our bodies have clever systems in place to support healthy metabolic function.

“On the whole, I would recommend people first and foremost simply try to drink adequate water and fluids, to remain hydrated,” she told Coach.

“This is of vital importance for our bodies to function at their peaks, and ultimately leave us feeling energised and able to take on the day.”

Landau says that different types of water have slight variances in mineral content so some individuals might choose to prioritise alkaline water.

“As an example, alkaline water is often higher in calcium and potassium, which someone who is looking to increase bone mineral density or improve their blood pressure may be looking to obtain,” she says.

“It is worth noting however, that that there will be ample alternative food sources that are denser options of these micronutrients that could easily be incorporated into your diet.”

Naturopath Emma Tippett from Empowered Health believes our bodies function optimally when we’re not too acidic, but she says there are a lot of contributing factors towards such a state.

“I look at things that cause acidity and inflammation in the body, such as processed foods, lots of sugar and lots of refined grain products,” she says.

“That’s why we tell people to eat lots of green veggies because they help to keep the body in a more alkaline state.”

Tippett says alkaline water will never be the be-all and end-all of a healthy body, but having it can’t hurt.

“Stress, drinking and smoking are going to put the body into a more acidic state,” she points out.

Tippett has a water alkalizing machine in her clinic which adds minerals back into the water, but says that filtering water is all most people need to worry about in order to get as clean a source as possible.

“It’s definitely going to be beneficial to have more minerals in our body and it’s just another source that we can take in for [optimal] nutritional status,” she says.

“But if you’re going to alkalize your water and eat lots of sugar and no veggies, you’re probably not going to get the full benefit.” 

Source:

http://coach.nine.com.au/2017/03/24/17/00/alkaline-water

Kegel exercise

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Pelvic floor exercise, also known as Kegel exercise, consists of repeatedly contracting and relaxing the muscles that form part of the pelvic floor, now sometimes colloquially referred to as the “Kegel muscles”. The exercise needs to be performed multiple times each day, for several minutes at a time, for one to three months, to begin to have an effect.

Exercises are usually done to reduce urinary stress incontinence (especially after childbirth) and reduce premature ejaculatory occurrences in men, as well as to increase the size and intensity of erections.

Several tools exist to help with these exercises, although various studies debate the relative effectiveness of different tools versus traditional exercises.

They were first described in 1948 by Arnold Kegel.

Factors such as pregnancy, childbirth, aging, being overweight, and abdominal surgery such as cesarean section, often result in the weakening of the pelvic muscles. This can be assessed by either digital examination of vaginal pressure or using a Kegel perineometer. Kegel exercises are useful in regaining pelvic floor muscle strength in such cases.

Urinary health

Pelvic floor exercise is the recommended first-line conservative treatment for women with urinary incontinence of the stress, urge, or mixed types. There is tentative evidence that biofeedback may give added benefit when used with pelvic floor muscle training.

Pelvic prolapse

The symptoms of prolapse and its severity can be decreased with pelvic floor exercises. Effectiveness can be improved with feedback on how to do the exercises.

Sexual function

In 1952, Dr. Kegel published a report in which he stated that the women doing this exercise were attaining orgasm more easily, more frequently and more intensely: “it has been found that dysfunction of the pubococcygeus exists in many women complaining of lack of vaginal feeling during coitus and that in these cases sexual appreciation can be increased by restoring function of the pubococcygeus”.

Health effects for men

Though most commonly used by women, men can also use Kegel exercises. Kegel exercises are employed to strengthen the pubococcygeal muscle and other muscles of the pelvic diaphragm. Kegels can help men achieve stronger erections, maintain healthy hips, and gain greater control over ejaculation. The objective of this may be similar to that of the exercise in women with weakened pelvic floor: to increase bladder and bowel control and sexual function.

Urinary health

After a prostatectomy there is no clear evidence that teaching pelvic floor exercises alters the risk of urinary incontinence (leakage of urine).

Sexual function

A paper found that pelvic floor exercises could help restore erectile function in men with erectile dysfunction. There are said to be significant benefits for the problem of premature ejaculation from having more muscular control of the pelvis.

Mechanism of action

The aim of Kegel exercises is to improve muscle tone by strengthening the pubococcygeus muscles of the pelvic floor. Kegel is a popular prescribed exercise for pregnant women to prepare the pelvic floor for physiological stresses of the later stages of pregnancy and childbirth. Kegel exercises are said to be good for treating vaginal prolapse and preventing uterine prolapse in women and for treating prostate pain and swelling resulting from benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) and prostatitis in men. Kegel exercises may be beneficial in treating urinary incontinence in both men and women. Kegel exercises may also increase sexual gratification, allowing women to complete pompoir and aid in reducing premature ejaculation in men. The many actions performed by Kegel muscles include holding in urine and avoiding defecation. Reproducing this type of muscle action can strengthen the Kegel muscles. The action of slowing or stopping the flow of urine may be used as a test of correct pelvic floor exercise technique.

It is now known that the components of levator ani (the pelvic diaphragm), namely pubococcygeus, puborectalis and ileococcygeus, contract and relax as one muscle. Hence, pelvic floor exercises involve the entire levator ani rather than pubococcygeus alone. Pelvic floor exercises may be of benefit in cases of fecal incontinence and pelvic organ prolapse conditions e.g. rectal prolapse.

  1. Bridgeman, Bruce; Roberts, Steven G. (2010-03-01). “The 4-3-2 method for Kegel exercises”. American Journal of Men’s Health. 4 (1): 75–76. doi:10.1177/1557988309331798. ISSN 1557-9891. PMID 19477754.
  2.  “MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia: Kegel exercises”. Nlm.nih.gov. 2011-08-29. Retrieved 2011-09-02.
  3. Dumoulin C, Lemieux MC, Bourbonnais D et al 2004 Physiotherapy for persistent postnatal stress urinary incontinence: a randomized controlled trial. Obstetrics and Gynaecology 104:504-510

Who says baby food can’t be delicious and healthy?

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My sweet granddaughter Coraline loves to eat. Can you tell? And her daddy Keegan loves to cook for her now that she can have solid foods. They’re a good team in the kitchen. In this picture, she’s “helping” him make some puréed veggies. You’ll find a recipe at the end of this post. (Yes, that’s a bottle of wine in the background. Neither cook is imbibing and it’s not an ingredient in any baby food recipe.)

“I’ve always really enjoyed cooking, especially for others,” Keegan told me. “Watching Coraline enjoy a home cooked meal brings us so much joy. I also think the whole process really connects her to the food she is eating. It starts with the grocery shopping. Coraline makes a trip to the store every Sunday morning where she is shown and handed all of the foods that go into her meals. I think it’s so important for people to understand where their food is coming from. It’s also significantly less expensive than purchasing baby food in jars or pouches.”

At the moment, she’s discovered something she seems to like a lot. Tofu. They cut firm tofu into small cubes (less than 1/2-inch) and lay them out in front of her.

“It took a few days,” said Keegan, “but she eventually started to get the hang of it. Tofu is nice because it mashes up fairly quickly once Coraline starts chewing on it. I think we’ve both been surprised at how much she seems to enjoy it. Big smiles are common. I think she’s pretty proud of herself.”

Source:

http://catchinghealth.bangordailynews.com/2017/03/16/recipes/baby-food-delicious-healthy/

Why Former Tech Execs Are Leaving Google And Twitter To Start Health Care Companies

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When Stephanie Tilenius, a former senior executive at eBay and Google, decided to start a health-coaching app, many in her network were incredulous. “Everyone thought I was crazy,” she recalls. “Some people loved that I wanted to do something to help others, but a lot socially ostracized me.”

 

For many entrepreneurs, the health sector offers an enticing opportunity–with strings attached. It’s an estimated $3 trillion market and is still dominated by a cadre of traditional players. But many in the technology sector have shied away from the industry after witnessing many high-profile failures and realizing that change doesn’t happen quickly. “Silicon Valley operators and investors see that health care needs better technology,” explains veteran health IT consultant Ben Rooks. “But they learn quickly that health care isn’t about radical disruption; it’s about slow evolution.”

Despite the challenges, a small but growing group of former technologists from companies like Google and Twitter are in it for the long haul. In many cases, their motivations are deeply personal: A family member lost to chronic disease, or a brush with the broken health care system. I spoke to four former tech executives about their reasons for moving into health care, the cultural differences between the two sectors, and the challenges they’ve faced along the way.

“Because patients deserve better than a seven-minute visit.”–Stephanie Tilenius, former VP of commerce and payments at Google and former GM and VP at eBay and PayPal

Stephanie Tilenius started her career at e-commerce companies like eBay and PayPal, and eventually ascended the ranks to become a senior vice president at Google. But prior to joining eBay in 2001, she spent a few years at an online drugstore called PlanetRx. That early experience in health care had a lasting impact on Tilenius. When her father got sick, she felt an even stronger pull to quit her steady tech job to make an impact in the sector. “My father had multiple chronic conditions and went from doctor to doctor,” she recalls.

These days, she is the CEO of a startup called Vida, which provides virtual care for patients with chronic ailments. Before starting the company, Tilenius reflected on her father’s need for “continuous care,” which would involve all of his care providers communicating with him and each other between office visits. Tilenius believes his heart attack could have been avoided, or at least delayed, if he had received better care than a “seven-minute visit, in which all his doctors would all just tell him to change his diet.”

Unlike many of her peers in health tech, she made a point of working closely with medical centers that were already developing clinically validated programs for treating patients with chronic disease like diabetes, depression, and hypertension. She started Vida to make these programs more accessible by shifting some of the components online, and connecting patients with virtual health coaches to inspire long-term behavioral changes.

At first, many friends and acquaintances in her network couldn’t understand why she’d leave a successful career in tech to start a health company that would likely grow and monetize at a slow pace. “People didn’t understand why I would leave a senior role and money on the table,” she says. “In Silicon Valley, it’s about hypergrowth, and if you’re not doing that, then there’s something wrong.” Likewise, many in health care were skeptical about technologists moving into their own complex sector. Tilenius believes that she’ll ultimately show her detractors on both sides that new platforms will emerge in health care, starting with mobile and cloud, and that companies like Vida will be at the forefront. Ultimately, she asks, “Don’t you want us crazy Googlers to help people by building companies and taking risks?”

 

“It’s a quest for purpose.”–Katie Jacobs Stanton, former VP of global media for Twitter, and Othman Laraki, former VP of product management at Twitter and former product manager at Google

For Othman Laraki, the CEO of Color Genomics, the migration of technologists to health care is inevitable as the so-called “internet generation” ages and their priorities change. Laraki’s company offers a $249 test to screen people for gene mutations associated with various cancers. Laraki says he left a job in product management, in part because he learned that he is a carrier of one of these mutations. He also found through his research that those with an early awareness of their disease risks can take proactive and preventative steps. “Color started with a simple question,” he recalls. “Is this test something that could benefit my family as well as other families out there?”

Source:

https://www.fastcompany.com/3068392/why-former-tech-execs-are-leaving-google-and-twitter-to-start-health-care-

iPads In Every Hospital: Apple’s Plan To Crack The $3 Trillion Health Care Sector

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Garry James, 60, is perched on the edge of his hospital bed, temporarily unhooked from monitors that track his vital signs. It’s his third week waiting for a heart transplant, a nerve-wracking process that can stretch out months or even years, but he greets me with a wide smile.

 

“I’m an Android guy,” says James, while clutching the iPad that Cedars Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles gave him when he was admitted into the hospital. Unlike some of the more senior patients on the ward, he got up to speed with the technology in no time. “My son, who is 10, knew exactly what to do,” James says. These days, James uses the iPad to message his nurses, order magazines, make notes, browse medication side effects, reserve lodging for his family when they visit from Las Vegas, and review his medical record.

The device has helped him feel more in control of his own care. “I want to have an intelligent conversation with my doctor,” James says. “Just enough to be guided on the right path.”

An iPad might not seem revolutionary in the internet age, but it’s actually a big step forward for patients to have digital health information at their fingertips. Many doctors, like Cedars Sinai’s Shaun Miller, remember a time even five years ago, when many processes were still paper-based and medical information sat in silos. It took a $35 billion investment from the federal government back in 2009 with the HITECH Act to kick-start the process to digitize health data. Even today, many patients still receive their health data on a USB stick or CD-ROM, making the shift to mobile at some hospitals truly cutting-edge.

A major reason that hospitals across the United States have been notoriously slow to adopt mobile and consumer technologies relative to other sectors, like finance and retail, is that many are still tied to on-premises enterprise software. “Health care has been the last bastion for (apps with) design principles, mobility, and a clean, compelling consumer experience to infiltrate,” says Sterling Lanier, CEO of Tonic Health, an app that collects medical data. It has also been a challenge to get doctors and other health professionals on the same page. As the associate chief medical officer, it’s Miller’s job to help convince doctors to change their processes. It’s only recently that the majority of fellow physicians have fully adapted to the shift away from clipboards, fax machines, and pagers. “A lot of it has been resistance to change,” Miller tells me. Changing the way their work is done “can feel scary” to some medical professionals, Miller says.

Meanwhile, patients seem to have adapted quickly to the changes, as many already use mobile devices in their daily lives. James pulls up a page with all of his prescriptions, and clicks on each to review possible side effects. If he has any concerns, he can send a direct message to a specific person on his specific care team and get a response in minutes, rather than pressing a button for any on-call nurse to show up. “I’ve never seen anything like this,” he says.

AN ALLURING MARKET

For Apple, the $3 trillion health care sector offers a lot of potential for growth for its iPad. The company is likely to restate its commitment to the tablet device as early as next week, with the rumored announcement of the 9.7-Inch “iPad Pro 2.” From an enterprise sales perspective–a priority for the iPhone maker in the wake of recent partnerships with Cisco and IBM–large hospitals and health systems that shift to iOS tend to buy devices in bulk. “We now have hundreds of iPads for patients to use,” says Miller, who uses a compliant iPhone app called Voalte to text with other providers. “As we expand to more wards, it’ll be thousands.”

iPhones and iPads have been used by some hospitals for more than five years, but it’s only recently that the company went public about its interest in health care. “Leading hospitals and health systems are using Apple products to transform all aspects of health care inside the hospital and beyond,” says an Apple spokesperson, emphasizing the “privacy and security of iOS” as a key factor for its growing popularity among hospitals for remote patient monitoring and in-patient care.

 

For Apple, health care is one of the largest sectors it is tackling as part of its enterprise efforts. It isn’t alone. Rival phone makers Samsung and Alphabet also see huge potential to bring mobile technologies to patients and clinicians. “There’s still some transitions that have to take place in the industry,” explains Ben Bajarin, a technology analyst with Creative Strategies, who has been tracking Apple’s move into health care. Some of these challenges include the lack of reimbursement from insurance companies for new technologies that are shown to improve patient outcomes and cultural resistance among some doctors.

“NO PASSING FAD”

Apple’s interest in health care was also initially surprising to many outside observers, given the complexities and regulatory constraints that many tech companies shy away from. “Health is a sensitive area, and it’s not consumer-oriented,” says Bajarin, who suggests that it wasn’t an obvious target for Apple. “You don’t just have to pass the Federal Communications Commission,” he says. “You have to go through a lot of regulatory protocols,” including the FDA. But Bajarin says the move was a long time coming: The late Apple CEO Steve Jobs realized how “broken and bad” many health care processes were, such as the poor user experience, after he got sick with cancer.

After consulting with dozens of experts and building a team, Apple opted to “look at themselves as a platform,” Bajarin adds. Rather than making its own apps for hospitals, the company is working with top developers who are already building apps for health–as it does in other industries–by taking feedback from experts, like developers and hospital executives, and connecting them to its developer relations team to answer ongoing questions from top app makers.

In response to conversations with industry experts, Apple introduced a slew of software services–CareKit, ResearchKit, and HealthKit–that are all designed to make it easier for mobile developers and consumers to pull together disparate health information such as steps, sleep, and heart rate in one place. HealthKit, which was introduced first, is designed to make it easier for developers to gather health data–with the user’s consent. ResearchKit, already in use by developers at major academic hospitals and universities like Mount Sinai, Stanford Children’s Hospital, and Harvard University, helps researchers recruit participants for their studies on mobile. CareKit is geared at helping patients with chronic conditions share data with their care team.

Source:

https://www.fastcompany.com/3068773/ipads-in-every-hospital-apples-plan-to-crack-the-3-trillion-health-care-se

9 Air-Cleaning Houseplants That Are Almost Impossible to Kill

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What might your office or apartment have in common with a NASA spaceship? Unfortunately the answer may be poor air quality. Indoor air pollutants have been ranked among the top five environmental risks to public health: Stagnant indoor environments allow pollutants to build up and stick around in greater amounts than we humans should be breathing in. Living and working in places rife with air contaminants and lacking decent ventilation can cause “sick building syndrome,” which can cause headaches, dizziness, nausea, and eye, ear, and nose irritation. Lucky for us, NASA scientists have been working to understand this problem and find solutions. Their space-age solution was an easy one that anyone can use: Use houseplants to clean the air .

What’s the Deal?

Given that people spend more than 90 percent of their time indoors, air quality matters . Furnishings, upholstery, synthetic building materials, and cleaning products in homes and offices can emit a variety of toxic compounds, like formaldehyde. Indoor air pollution can also be caused by pollen, bacteria, and molds, as outdoor air contaminants like car exhaust finds its way into buildings. All of these are made worse in small or poorly-ventilated spaces (like maybe your apartment with that window that you accidentally painted shut last year).

The good news is that there’s an easy and affordable way to combat the presence of the yucky stuff we may be breathing in, and it comes right from the natural world. Plants purify air, making them part of what NASA calls “nature’s life support system.” Adding potted plants to a room has been shown to reduce the amount of air particulates (although plants in bloom may be contributing their own compounds to the air) .

So, how do houseplants clean the air? Plants absorb some of the particulates from the air at the same time that they take in carbon dioxide, which is then processed into oxygen through photosynthesis. But that’s not all—microorganisms associated with the plants are present in the potting soil, and these microbes are also responsible for much of the cleaning effect .

Beyond air quality, plants just make people feel better. For example, hospital patients with plants in their rooms were more positive and had lower blood pressure and stress levels . Similarly, indoor plants may make people smarter by allowing them to stay alert and reducing mental fatigue .

Your Action Plan

Although houseplants may be intimidating to those with a “black thumb” or fear of commitment, it turns out that many plants are easy to care for—so easy, in fact, you’d have to try pretty hard to kill them. Below, we’ve pulled together a list of nine virtually-indestructible plants inspired by NASA’s research.

Each kind of plant has its own favorite environmental conditions, so look for a tag that comes with the plant or online to find out how much sunlight and water it will need. If your plant doesn’t come in a pretty pot, or if it outgrew its previous one, you can easily report it. Just find a pot that’s at least now inch larger than the previous container, add potting soil to the bottom, and place the plant so that the top of the soil remains at the same level as before. Finally, carefully pack potting soil around the edges of the plant and water it. Voilà!

Garden Mum

In the NASA research, this plant was an air-purifying champion, removing ammonia, benzene, formaldehyde, and xylene from indoor air. Popular and inexpensive at garden stores, they can be planted outside after they’re finished blooming.

Pollutants removed: ammonia, benzene, formaldehyde, and xylene

2. Spider Plant

Spider plants are among the easiest houseplants to grow, making them a great choice for beginners or forgetful owners. A fan of bright, indirect sunlight, spider plants will send out shoots with flowers that eventually grow into baby spider plants or spiderettes.

Pollutants removed: formaldehyde and xylene

3. Dracaena

There are more than 40 different kinds of Dracaena plants, making it easy to find one that’s a perfect fit for your home or office. They’re common foliage plants with long, wide leaves that are often variegated with lines of white, cream, or red. Pet owners might want to select a different plant, however, as these are toxic to cats and dogs.

Pollutants removed: benzene, formaldehyde, trichloroethylene, and xylene

4. Ficus/Weeping Fig

Though the ficus is a tree in its native home of southeast Asia, when it grows indoors, it’s a hardy plant that ends up being between two and 10 feet tall. So why not get figgy with it? Grow this low-maintenance houseplant in bright, indirect light and allow the soil to dry out between waterings. Although this plant has some serious air-cleaning abilities, it can also be taken outside in late spring and brought back indoors when temperatures are warm and well above freezing.

Pollutants removed: benzene, formaldehyde, and trichloroethylene

5. Peace Lily

Peace lily plants are relatively small compared to many of the plants on this list, but they still pack some major air-cleaning abilities. Easy to grow, these plants will flower for much of the summer. Just be aware that those flowers (like all flowers) do contribute some pollen and floral scents to the air, so you may want to avoid having a room full of them. Put peace lilies in a shady spot and keep the soil moist without overwatering.

Pollutants removed: ammonia, benzene, formaldehyde, and trichloroethylene

6. Boston Fern

These plants prefer to clean the air from a cool location with high humidity and indirect light. They’re relatively easy to grow, but they do need to stay moist. Check the Boston Fern’s soil daily to see if it needs water, and give it a good soak once per month.

Pollutants removed: formaldehyde and xylene

7. Snake Plant/Mother-in-Law’s Tongue

This is one of the hardest houseplants to kill. Although it does need to be watered occasionally, it generally prefers drier conditions and some sun.

Pollutants removed: benzene, formaldehyde, trichloroethylene, and xylene

8. Bamboo Palm

A superstar of filtering formaldehyde, these palms thrive in full sun or bright light. Part of the reason they can filter so much air is that they can grow to be pretty big—as tall as four to 12 feet high, making them exciting (and pet-friendly) indoor additions.

Pollutants removed: benzene, formaldehyde, trichloroethylene

9. Aloe Vera

In addition to being easy to care for, aloe makes some serious health claims. The plant’s leaves contain a clear liquid full of vitamins, enzymes, amino acids, and other compounds that have wound-healing, antibacterial, and anti-inflammatory properties, and there is some evidence that aloe may help (and is unlikely to hurt) skin conditions like psoriasis .

Pollutant removed: formaldehyde

Source:

http://greatist.com/connect/houseplants-that-clean-air

Virtual Reality Is Revolutionizing Health Care

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It has already changed. Moreover, healthcare is one of the “hottest” industries, where virtual reality is rapidly hitting its stride.

 

Let’s see a few examples:

 

Relief of the sensation of pain

 

Here, our “doctor” prescribes picking up the app, where you can hide in the huts made of snow or other materials. The environment places the patients in a condition where one simply gets pleasure from sightseeing. This method effectively helps to calm down and distract the patients from quite unpleasant burning sensations throughout the body. Currently, specialized healthcare applications are in development and widely used to distract from painful procedures effectively, owing to which it is possible to do them without anesthesia.

 

One such healthcare application is a video game, SnowWorld, from the University of Washington. Despite the fact that all this is still in the process of development, the many clinical trials have shown very encouraging results.

 

Virtual reality and exposure therapy

 

Professor Albert Rizzo, who is the director of VR in the medical field and who works at the Institute for Creative Technologies, uses virtual reality exposure therapy, particularly with soldiers who are experiencing post-traumatic stress syndrome. The essence of the therapy lies in patient’s immersion in simulation, where he controls a hammer, and suddenly a homemade device explodes in a particular place.

 

The method is an exceptional opportunity for the soldiers, especially those who survived war, to talk about it. This therapy is a peculiar stimulation of the imagination, where the patient is trying to work on the trauma or any other problems by a particular provocative method.

 

Virtual reality as a tool to conquer phobias

 

The above-mentioned exposure therapy is very useful for the standard treatment for phobias. The patient, under the supervision of a psychologist, meets something that causes fear. For example, a man has a fear of public speaking. Virtual reality technologies help cope with them by “acting” in the front of a virtual audience.

 

Frequently observed spider phobia is also worth paying attention to. One of the first prominent healthcare applications to treat spider phobia is Spider World.

 

Virtual robotic surgery

 

Robotic surgery has become a popular virtual technology. The semantics of the term seems to be a bit intricate, yet the process of fulfilling the operation is the following: A robotic device performs the operation but is controlled by a human surgeon. It is a simple, sublime interaction, which decreases time, and reduces the risk of complications.

 

Virtual reality has also found its application in educational purposes and in the area of Remote Telesurgery, where the operation is carried out in a separate place for the patient. The main idea of this particular system becomes revealed in a force feedback, where a surgeon can evaluate the amount of pressure to use when performing delicate action procedures.

Source:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/virtual-reality-is-revolutionizing-health-care_us_58c98678e4b039fbadeb1f14

Virtual reality aids medical trauma training

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Dr. Arishi Abdulaziz put on a headset, moved his hands slightly and immersed himself into a virtual world.

 

But this was no video game. Abdulaziz was “standing” in a trauma bay at OhioHealth Grant Medical Center, amid a medical team treating a car crash victim.

He watched the team cut off the patient’s black T-shirt and shorts. He heard a doctor ask the patient questions. Meanwhile, a medical technician scanned the man’s abdomen and chest with an ultrasound probe.

Abdulaziz turned to the right and left to assess staff members and watch monitors. He turned around to review an ultrasound screen.

Eventually, he removed the gear and got his bearings. He was back in a small office at Grant.

“It’s a great experience,” Abdulaziz said. “It is as if you are in trauma, really. Like 100 percent, you are in trauma.”

The virtual-reality experience is new for residents training in trauma care at the Downtown hospital. On Monday, Abdulaziz, a resident from the University of Toledo Medical Center, joined Dr. Jesse Nichols, a resident from the Adena Regional Medical Center in Chillicothe, in testing out the experience.

Nichols donned headgear and suddenly was among members of a trauma team helping out a woman injured in a fall.

“I felt like I needed to reach out and help the patient,” he said, upon removing the headgear. “You’re right there.”

The virtual-reality scenarios — there are three — were filmed in July by a team from Ohio University that hung or mounted three softball-size camera and microphone units in the emergency department to capture 360-degree experiences, said Eric Williams, co-creator of the new Immersive Media Initiative at the Athens school. Patients consented to be in the videos.

After filming, the OU team pieced together video, then added a sphere of sound before adapting it all to work with HTC virtual-reality headgear and software.

The footage will be used to help residents on their first day of trauma-surgery and critical-care training at Grant, said Dr. Thanh Nguyen, a trauma-services physician.

The goal is to familiarize residents with the sights and sounds of trauma bays and the different roles played by doctors, medics, nurses and technicians who attend to patients.

Nguyen foresees a vast library of scenarios.

“The goal eventually is to have hundreds of patients to teach different scenarios, like, ‘This is what a gunshot victim looks like.’ ‘This is what a stabbing looks like.’ ‘This is what a car accident looks like,'” Nguyen said.

Nguyen said he also hopes that future scenarios include patients who move from trauma bay to operating room to the intensive-care unit. Other goals include creating a smartphone app and to expand training programs to cater to nurses and more experienced doctors.

Williams said that the project is part of Ohio University’s Immersive Media Initiative, which started last year with a $1 million university innovation challenge grant. The school wants to expand virtual and augmented reality across various university disciplines and in the community.

“The main thrust of the Immersive Media Initiative is to use virtual reality as an educational platform for graduate and undergraduate students,” said Williams, also an associate professor in the School of Media Arts & Studies. “Students not only learn technology in the classroom, but they’re able to then go out and work on real-world projects.”

 

As Nichols and Abdulaziz experienced the virtual trauma bay, they saw things from the view of the physician doing an assessment at the patient’s bedside. The program’s software also allows for views from the foot of the gurney and from the side of the room.

“This is really the first step,” Williams said. “This technology is so new that the next steps are only limited by our imagination.”

Source:

http://www.dispatch.com/news/20170315/virtual-reality-aids-medical-trauma-training

The Alkaline Diet CookBook: The Alkaline Meal Plan to Balance your pH, Reduce Body Acid, Lose Weight and Have Amazing Health

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Acidic and Alkaline levels are indicated in your body through pH scales. Alkaline levels in your blood should be maintained ideally at or between the pH ranges of 7.35 – 7.45. At the ranges of 7.35, your body is highly acidic and prone to a variety of illnesses. Consumption of highly acidic foods strains minerals such as Calcium, Magnesium, Potassium and Sodium from the bone deposits by regulating the acid levels. One of the best books you will find on amazon. Great health starts with knowledge, this book will help reduce acid levels and help anyone on their weight loss journey.

Bottled water overtakes soda as America’s No. 1 drink — why you should avoid both

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Americans now drink more bottled water than soda.

Bottled-water consumption in the U.S. hit 39.3 gallons per capita last year, while carbonated soft drinks fell to 38.5 gallons, marking the first time that soda was knocked off the top spot, according to data from industry tracker Beverage Marketing Corp. But Soda is still more expensive, racking up $39.5 billion in retail sales versus $21.3 billion for water, industry research group Euromonitor found.

“In 2016, bottled water overtook carbonates to become the leading soft drinks category in off-trade volume terms, an astonishing milestone a decade in the making,” it said.

While the fizzy soda category has experienced an annual volume sales decline since 2003, bottled water grew every year over the last two decades, except 2009 during the depths of the Great Recession, driven by consumer concerns about the effects of artificial sweeteners and sugar.

More than one-quarter of bottled water revenue last year was shared by the soda giants Coca-Cola Co. KO, +0.62% and PepsiCo PEP, +0.52% which sell Dasani and Aquafina respectively. In the four decades since the launch of Perrier water in the U.S., consumption of bottled water surged 2,700%, from 354 million gallons in 1976 to 11.7 billion gallons in 2015, according to the International Bottled Water Association.

Bottled water also had another unexpected boost aside from skittishness over sodas. Scares over possible water contamination have helped boost demand for bottled water over the last few decades, experts say.

Some 700,000 Californians may be exposed to contaminated water, according to California’s Water Resources Control Board. And in Toledo, Ohio in 2014, the Ohio National Guard distributed bottled water to residents due to contaminated water there. A federal state of emergency was declared in Flint, Mich. in January 2016 and residents were told to use bottled water for both drinking and bathing due to faulty and old lead pipes.

But what people don’t know: When they buy bottled water, they are often times drinking the same water that comes out of the tap. “The general public thinks bottled water is going to be safer and cleaner than tap water,” says Mae Wu, attorney in the health program at National Resources Defense Council, a nonprofit environmental advocacy group based in Washington, D.C. “For the most part, that’s not true.”

Some 45% of bottled water brands are sourced from the municipal water supply—the same source as what comes out of the tap, according to Peter Gleick, a scientist and author of “Bottled and Sold: The Story Behind Our Obsession with Bottled Water.”

Those within the industry say that doesn’t mean it’s the same as tap water. A spokesman for the International Bottled Water Association says purified and spring water must meet Food & Drug Administration quality standards. (Dasani and Aquafina use a public water source, but both companies say the water is filtered for purity using a “state-of-the-art” process.) And, as the industry expands, more bottled waters are available with different flavors, carbonation and vitamins.

Bottled water is not without chemicals, according to studies of European bottled waters carried out in Germany, Switzerland, Italy and France — one published in 2011 and the other in 2013 — by the Goethe University Frankfurt’s Department of Aquatic Ecotoxicology. Among the main compounds Wagner found: Endocrine disrupting chemicals, or EDCs, which can act like hormones in the body and have been linked to diabetes, breast cancer and cardiovascular disease. (The International Bottled Water Association said the origin of these EDCs may have been environmental rather than from a packaging material.)

Plastic soda and water bottles are also clogging up landfills and floating as vast vortices on the world’s oceans. Americans discard around 33.6 million tons of plastic each year, but only 6.5% of that recycled and 7.7% is combusted in waste-to-energy facilities, according to Columbia University’s Earth Center.The U.S. was recently ranked 20th among 192 countries that could have contributed to plastic waste in the oceans, according to a 2015 study led by Jenna Jambeck, an environmental engineer at the University of Georgia and published in the academic journal Science.

Another 2015 study estimated that the accumulated number of microplastic particles in 2014 weighed between 93 and 236 thousand metric tons, which is only 1% of global plastic waste estimated to enter the ocean in one year. What’s more, consumers can purify their own tap water for a fraction of the cost of a $2 bottle of water or soda. (Prices start at $5.)

Still, soda and sugary drinks may lead to an estimated 184,000 deaths each year among adults from diabetes, heart disease and other obesity-related illnesses, according to a landmark 2015 study by researchers at Tufts University published in the American Heart Association journal Circulation. The study analyzed consumption patterns from 611,971 individuals between 1980 and 2010 across 51 countries, along with data on national availability of sugar in 187 countries. (The American Beverage Association published a lengthy rebuttal: “The authors themselves acknowledge that they are at best estimating effects of sugar-sweetened beverage consumption.”)

But sugar-shy consumers are shying away from diet soda too. Several recent studies have linked diet soda and cardiovascular disease and showed a correlation (if not a causation) between cancer and aspartame. The beverage industry says people who are overweight and already at risk for heart disease may consume more diet drinks in an attempt to control their weight and the Food and Drug Administration has ruled that artificial sweeteners are safe.

Last year, Pepsi announced that it will sell Diet Pepsi with both aspartame, the diet sweetener typically used in sweeteners like Equal, and sucralose, used in Splenda.

Unlike bottled water, however, they’re both artificial.

Source:

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/bottled-water-overtakes-soda-as-americas-no-1-drink-why-you-should-avoid-both-2017-03-10?siteid=yhoof2&yptr=yahoo

Bacon, soda & too few nuts tied to big portion of US deaths

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Gorging on bacon, skimping on nuts? These are among food habits that new research links with deaths from heart disease, strokes and diabetes.

Overeating or not eating enough of the 10 foods and nutrients contributes to nearly half of U.S. deaths from these causes, the study suggests.

“Good” foods that were under-eaten include: nuts and seeds, seafood rich in omega-3 fats including salmon and sardines; fruits and vegetables; and whole grains.

“Bad” foods or nutrients that were over-eaten include salt and salty foods; processed meats including bacon, bologna and hot dogs; red meat including steaks and hamburgers; and sugary drinks.

The research is based on U.S. government data showing there were about 700,000 deaths in 2012 from heart disease, strokes and diabetes and on an analysis of national health surveys that asked participants about their eating habits. Most didn’t eat the recommended amounts of the foods studied.

 

The 10 ingredients combined contributed to about 45 percent of those deaths, according to the study.

It may sound like a familiar attack on the typical American diet, and the research echoes previous studies on the benefits of heart-healthy eating. But the study goes into more detail on specific foods and their risks or benefits, said lead author Renata Micha, a public health researcher and nutritionist at Tufts University.

The results were published Tuesday in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Micha said the foods and nutrients were singled out because of research linking them with the causes of death studied. For example, studies have shown that excess salt can increase blood pressure, putting stress on arteries and the heart. Nuts contain healthy fats that can improve cholesterol levels, while bacon and other processed meats contain saturated fats that can raise levels of unhealthy LDL cholesterol.

In the study, too much salt was the biggest problem, linked with nearly 10 percent of the deaths. Overeating processed meats and undereating nuts and seeds and seafood each were linked with about 8 percent of the deaths.

 

The Food and Drug Administration’s recent voluntary sodium reduction guidelines for makers of processed foods and taxes that some U.S. cities have imposed on sugar-sweetened beverages are steps in the right direction, Micha said.

A journal editorial said public health policies targeting unhealthy eating could potentially help prevent some deaths, while noting that the study isn’t solid proof that “suboptimal” diets were deadly.

The study’s recommended amounts, based on U.S. government guidelines, nutrition experts’ advice, and amounts found to be beneficial or harmful in previous research.

“Good” ingredients

—Fruits: 3 average-sized fruits daily

 

—Vegetables: 2 cups cooked or 4 cups raw vegetables daily

—Nuts/seeds: 5 1-ounce servings per week — about 20 nuts per serving

—Whole grains: 2 ½ daily servings

—Polyunsaturated fats, found in many vegetable oils: 11 percent of daily calories

—Seafood: about 8 ounces weekly

 

“Bad” ingredients

—Red meat: 1 serving weekly — 1 medium steak or the equivalent

—Processed meat: None recommended

—Sugary drinks: None recommended

—Salt: 2,000 milligrams daily — just under a teaspoon.

Source:

http://www.startribune.com/bacon-soda-too-few-nuts-tied-to-big-portion-of-us-deaths/415583824/

Alkaline Diet: Benefits, Foods to Eat and Avoid

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One of the more popular diets running around the public consciousness as of late is the alkaline diet or alkaline ash diet. You see a lot of websites and programs dedicated to the alkaline diet.

At its basic level, the alkaline diet is supposed to balance out the pH levels in the body’s blood and urine. But what are the alkaline diet benefits? What are alkaline foods? If you are curious about the alkaline diet plan, we’ve got the basics for you.

We cover the health benefits, alkaline ash diet foods, and everything you need to know if you’re considering this popular diet.

How Does the Alkaline Diet Benefit Your Health?

The first thing to know when researching an alkaline diet is that it may work, just not for the reasons that many sites and books tell you it will. The entire focus of the diet is to eat foods that balance the pH levels in your blood and urine.

The fact is that our body has a number of built-in systems to regulate the pH in blood because if it were to change due to outside forces such as food, you would probably die. One such system of our body that helps regulate pH is releasing or exhaling carbon dioxide.

That being said, the diet may be able to entirely change the pH levels in your urine, but testing urine is not a very good way to test your body’s overall pH levels.

All things considered, the benefits of an alkaline diet are not in balancing pH but in the diet itself. The alkaline diet promotes healthy eating. The diet promotes eating a lot of healthy foods like fruits and vegetables.

It’s also a diet that’s low in meat, gluten, and dairy. All of this has many positive health benefits.

The alkaline diet is a decent diet for weight loss. Consuming large amounts of fruits and vegetables will add a great deal of fiber to your diet, which is helpful for weight loss because it helps the body feel full for a longer time period.

Fruits and veggies are also beneficial because they are naturally low in calories and saturated fat. Combine this with regular exercise, and you’ve got a pretty winning combination.

Diets filled with fruits and vegetables also tend to be good for overall health as the fiber that can be found within has been shown to benefit heart health. The antioxidants in fruits and vegetables also are believed to fight free radicals, which could make them effective as prevention methods for various cancers and cardiovascular diseases.

While the alkaline diet may not work the way it is advertised, it definitely does have a number of health benefits that you may want to consider. At the very least, it is a fairly well-balanced diet for weight loss if you combine it with exercise.

If the alkaline diet sounds like it may be for you and your health goals, the next step is to figure out the different types of food you can and cannot eat while on an alkaline diet and which foods you can eat in moderation. We’ve already done a little work to help you out.

Source:

http://www.foods4betterhealth.com/alkaline-diet-benefits-foods-to-eat-and-avoid-30376

NHS to use Uber and startup Cera for at-home patient care

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Healthcare startup Cera is teaming up with Uber to deliver patient care on the NHS’ behalf. The service, launched in November, matches “hundreds” of carers in the UK with the people who need them most. Today, the company is announcing a partnership with the Barts Health NHS Trust — which runs Mile End Hospital, Newham University Hospital and others — so that doctors can effectively prescribe the platform and help their patients receive timely care at home. The hope is that such a service will improve patient care while freeing up hospital beds in London.

 

Cera has inked similar deals with three clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) in north-west London: Harrow, Brent and Hillingdon. To meet the needs of each community, Cera will be relying on Uber and its fleet of app-hailed drivers. They will help not only carers to make their usual house visits, but also patients as they attend hospital appointments. Cera says its services will also help people to get out of the house and remain independent. They can hail an UberAssist, which will help with walkers and scooters, or an UberWAV, which is fully wheelchair accessible.

To be clear, Uber doesn’t have a direct relationship with the NHS. It’s working with Cera, who holds the contract with the UK health service. “We do not have any contracts with Uber to provide non-emergency patient transport,” a spokesperson for the Barts Health NHS Trust emphasised. “When patients need assistance getting to and from our hospitals we provide ambulances and medi-cars, driven by trained experts.”

Uber has long positioned itself as an infrastructure company. We’ve seen hints of that vision before with services such as UberEats, which delivers restaurant food on demand. The new partnership with Cera, however, shows its potential as a larger transportation business. It can’t do everything — don’t expect Uber ambulances any time soon — but it could help other companies to shuffle their goods and staff around the country. The good publicity is timely too: the last seven days have been horrific for Uber, following CEO Travis Kalanick’s driver outburst, the company’s High Court defeat in London, and the reveal of a secretive tool called ‘Greyball’, which Uber reportedly uses to deceive authorities around the world.

Source:

https://www.engadget.com/2017/03/06/uk-nhs-uber-cera-hospital-patient-care/

Google uses AI to help diagnose breast cancer

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Google, which not along ago was using artificial intelligence to identify cat pictures, has moved onto something bigger — breast cancer.

Google announced Friday that it has achieved state-of-the-art results in using artificial intelligence to identify breast cancer. The findings are a reminder of the rapid advances in artificial intelligence, and its potential to improve global health.

Google used a flavor of artificial intelligence called deep learning to analyze thousands of slides of cancer cells provided by a Dutch university. Deep learning is where computers are taught to recognize patterns in huge data sets. It’s very useful for visual tasks, such as looking at a breast cancer biopsy.

With 230,000 new cases of breast cancer every year in the United States, Google hopes its technology will help pathologists better treat patients. The technology isn’t designed to, or capable of, replacing human doctors.

“What we’ve trained is just a little sliver of software that helps with one part of a very complex series of tasks,” said Lily Peng, the project manager behind Google’s work. “There will hopefully be more and more of these tools that help doctors [who] have to go through an enormous amount of information all the time.”

Peng described to CNNTech how the human and the computer could work together to create better outcomes. Google’s artificial intelligence system excels at being very sensitive to potential cancer. It will flag things a human will miss. But it sometimes will falsely identify something as cancer, whereas a human pathologist is better at saying, “no, this isn’t cancer.”

“Imagine combining these two types of super powers,” Peng said. “The algorithm helps you localize and find these tumors. And the doctor is really good at saying, ‘This is not cancer.’”

For now, Google’s progress is still research mode and remains in the lab. Google isn’t going to become your pathologist’s assistant tomorrow. But Google and many other players are striving toward a future where that becomes a reality.

Jeroen van der Laak, who leads the pathology department at Radboud University Medical Center, believes the first algorithms for cancer will be available within a couple years, and large-scale routine use will occur in about five years. His university provided the slides for Google’s research.

The technology will be especially useful in parts of the world where there’s a shortage of physicians. For patients who don’t have access to a pathologist, an algorithm — even if imperfect — would be a meaningful improvement. Van der Laak highlighted India and China as two underserved areas.

Source:

Google uses AI to help diagnose breast cancer

How 3-D technology helped surgeons separate conjoined twins

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On October 13, a surgical team stood over two 13-month old boys who were joined at the head and shared up to 2 inches of brain tissue.

Jadon and Anias McDonald were born as craniopagus twins, an incredibly rare condition affecting just one in millions, and October 13 was the day their family had been waiting for. It was the day this team of doctors and nurses at The Children’s Hospital at Montefiore in New York would separate them.
The operation was risky and complicated, but the surgeons were confident.
 
 
Before they had made a single cut, they felt like they knew what to expect. Like they’d seen it before. And in some ways, they had — virtually.
Across the country, a team of designers and engineers anxiously awaited the outcome of the surgery. Some of the members were in the operating room, as it was their work that gave the surgeons a look into Jadon and Anias’ shared brain before they were anywhere near the operating room.
At 3D Systems outside Denver, traditional two-dimensional imaging like CT scans were converted into complex three-dimensional models. Some of the models became virtual files the surgeons could manipulate. Others were created by 3-D printers, models the surgeons could hold in their hands.
“We worked hand in hand with the neuroradiologists,” said Katie Weimer, vice president of medical devices for 3D Systems. “We were online for hours with that team, looking at each slice of the imaging data, deciding, is this side Jadon? Is this side Anias? What’s happening with this particular set of vessels?”
3-D printing is not new in the medical field. For years, it has been used for a variety of items such as splints, implants or models for other operations, like heart surgery.
3D Systems has collaborated on dozens of conjoined twins’ cases over the past decade, but the McDonald boys presented a complex new challenge.
Craniopagus twins are extremely rare, occurring in only one of out of every 2.5 million births. About 40% of these twins are stillborn, and another third die within 24 hours of birth.
There are not many surgeons who have operated on craniopagus twins, but Dr. James Goodrich, at Children’s Hospital at Montefiore, is a world expert on them.
For his team, the surgery started with a virtual planning session courtesy of 3D Systems.
Source:

Racism played a role in Flint water crisis, says state report

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FLINT, MI – The Michigan Civil Rights Commission believes racism was a factor in the Flint water crisis, according to a newly released a report.

After a nearly year-long probe, the Commission determined that the actions resulting in nearly 100,000 people being exposed to Flint’s lead-tainted water abridges the civil rights of Flint residents under Michigan law.

“Policy makers, government leaders, and decision makers at many levels failed the residents of Flint,” said Agustin Arbulu, Director of the Michigan Department of Civil Rights. “By not challenging their assumptions, by not asking themselves the tough questions about how policy and decisions play out in different communities, especially communities primarily made up of people of color, those decisions and actions – or in some cases, lack of action – led to the tragedy taking place in Flint.”

The more than 100-page report outlined underlying issues that contributed to the city’s water crisis, including the history of segregated housing and education, environmental justice and the emergency manager law and the role of implicit bias.

Commissioners said the city’s history along with “structural and systemic racism combined with implicit bias led to decisions, actions, and consequences in Flint would not have allowed to happen in primarily white communities such as Birmingham, Ann Arbor, or East Grand Rapids,” said a Feb. 17 press release from the Michigan Civil Rights Commission.

The investigation included three public hearings and testimony from more than 150 residents, experts and government officials.

“We strongly believe that the actions that led to the poisoning of Flint’s water and the slow response resulted in the abridgement of civil rights for the people of Flint,” said Arthur Horwitz, co-chair of the Commission during the time of the investigation.  “We are not suggesting that those making decisions related to this crisis were racists, or meant to treat Flint any differently because it is a community of color.  Rather, the response is the result of implicit bias and the history of systemic racism that was built into the foundation of Flint.”

The Commission outlined a number of recommendations including replacing or restricting Michigan’s emergency manager law.

“The lessons of Flint are profound,” said Horwitz. “While the exact situation and response that happened in Flint may never happen anywhere else, the factors that led to this crisis remain in place and will most certainly lead to other tragedies if we don’t take steps to remedy them. We hope this report is a step in that direction.”

Details

The Michigan Civil Rights Commission released a more than 100 page report after their year-long investigation of the Flint water crisis. Here are key issues and recommendations from their report.

Major issues

  • The structures, institutions and systems that created Flint, including the history of segregated housing and education,
  • Environmental justice and the emergency manager law,
  • The role of implicit bias.

 

Recommendations for action

  • Replacing or restructuring Michigan’s emergency manager law.
  • Developing a plan of action to provide environmental justice to all Michigan residents.
  • Developing a deeper understanding of the roles of structural racialization and implicit bias, and how they affect decision-making throughout all branches of state government, and provide training on implicit bias to the Governor’s Cabinet, Mission Flint, and the staff of all state departments including DHHS and DEQ.

Source:

http://www.mlive.com/news/flint/index.ssf/2017/02/racism_played_a_role_in_flint.html

Artificial intelligence ‘will save wearables’!

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When a technology hype flops, do you think the industry can use it as a learning experience? A time of self-examination? An opportunity to pause and reflect on making the next consumer or business tech hype a bit less stupid?

Don’t be silly.

What it does is pile the next hype on to the last hype, and call it “Hype 2.0”.

“With AI integration in wearables, we are entering ‘wearable 2.0’ era,” proclaim analysts Counterpoint Research in one of the most optimistic press releases we’ve seen in a while.

It’s certainly bullish for market growth, predicting that “AI-powered wearables will grow 376 per cent annually in 2017 to reach 60 million units.”

In fact it’s got a new name for these – “hearables”. Apple will apparently have 78 per cent of this hearable market.

The justification for the claim is that language-processing assistants like Alexa will be integrated into more products. Counterpoint also includes Apple Airpods and Beats headphones as “AI-powered hearables”, which may be stretching things a little.

It almost seems rude to point out that the current wearables market – a bloodbath for vendors – is already largely “hearable”. Android Wear has been obeying OK Google commands spoken by users since it launched in 2014:

If a “smart” natural language interface had the potential to make wearables sell, surely we would know it by now. But we hardly need to tell you what sales of these devices are. Many vendors have hit paused, or canned their efforts completely. You could even argue that talking into a wearable may be one of the reasons why the wearable failed to be a compelling or successful consumer electronics story. People don’t want to do it.

Sprinkling the latest buzzword – machine learning or AI – over something that isn’t a success doesn’t suddenly make that thing a success. But AI has always had a cult-like quality to it: it’s magic, and fills a God-shaped hole. For 50 years, the divine promise of “intelligent machines” has periodically overcome people’s natural scepticism as they imagine a breakthrough is close at hand. Then it recedes into the labs again. All that won’t stop people wishing that this time AI has Lazarus-like powers.

We can’t wait for our mac

Source:

https://www.theregister.co.uk/2017/02/24/ai_will_save_wearables/

The Alkaline Diet CookBook: The Alkaline Meal Plan to Balance your pH, Reduce Body Acid, Lose Weight and Have Amazing Health

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Acidic and Alkaline levels are indicated in your body through pH scales. Alkaline levels in your blood should be maintained ideally at or between the pH ranges of 7.35 – 7.45. At the ranges of 7.35, your body is highly acidic and prone to a variety of illnesses. Consumption of highly acidic foods strains minerals such as Calcium, Magnesium, Potassium and Sodium from the bone deposits by regulating the acid levels. One of the best books you will find on amazon. Great health starts with knowledge, this book will help reduce acid levels and help anyone on their weight loss journey.

7 Natural Home Remedies for Gout

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Gout is a form of proactive arthritis, a condition which affects the joints, caused by the build-up of uric acid crystals, as told by Dr. Minakshi Sharma, an Ayurveda consultant at Vedic Vision Health Care Centre. Uric acid is a substance which is formed when the body breaks down purines (important substances which are regarded as the building blocks of DNA, as well as impacting blood circulation, digestion and absorption of nutrients); blood transports the uric acid to the kidney and stamps it out in urine. The condition in which excess uric acid is formed in the body causes gout, also called hyperuricemia. Usually, gout is the problem faced by men, but it triggers in women after menopause. Dr. B.N Sinha, a Delhi-based Ayurvedic expert, says, “Gout is also caused due to the consumption of more proteins and curd, so to avoid that one should lessen the intake of pulses or any other sources of protein and curd in your diet.”

At a time gout can affect only one joint, but if left untreated, it may trigger other joints as well. “There are many symptoms of gout like bitter joint pains which causes inflammation and redness, and commonly affects the toes. It can also affect ankles, knees, fingers and wrists in the long run. Gout can also cause swelling in the joints as well,” says Dr. Minakshi Sharma.

To diagnose gout, doctors conduct a uric acid test to know the level of uric acid in the body. It is also observed that the people with high level of uric acid do not always experience gout whereas some people may notice the symptoms without having high uric acid level.

It is often suggested to go for natural ways to cure any disease rather than depending completely on medicines. Here are some home remedies for curing gout:

1. Fenugreek Seeds

Fenugreek is an herb with light green leaves and small white flowers. Dr. Sharma says, “Consumption of fenugreek seeds can help cure gout as it helps in reducing internal as well as external inflammation of the body.”

How to use: Soak 1 Tbsp fenugreek seed in half cup water overnight and drink that water in the morning and chew the soaked seeds. This will help in reducing the swelling of the joints and can relieve pain.

2. Garlic

Garlic is an incredible cure for gout. It helps in removing the excess uric acid from the body.

How to use: Swallow one pod of garlic and if you find it difficult then you can finely chop the garlic and then consume it. It will help cure gout from its roots.

3. Carom Seeds (Ajwain) and Ginger

Both carom seeds and ginger work towards making you sweat, which help in removing the uric acid from the body. Moreover, ginger has anti-inflammatory properties, which relieve pain and swelling.

How to use: Take ½ Tbsp ajwain and 1 inch slice of ginger, boil with a cup of water. Strain the decoction and consume half of it in the morning and the other half in the evening.

4. Castor Oil

Dr. B.N Sinha suggests taking tolerably warm castor oil and massaging it on the gout affected area or just dabbing it with a cotton ball. It will help in breaking down the toxic deposit and relieving redness and pain.

5. Coriander

Coriander helps in improving the gastro intestinal tract with its antioxidant properties, thus decreasing uric acid level. Drinking adequate amounts of water too can work wonders in stabilizing uric acid levels in the body.

How to Use: Take a few sprigs of coriander and mix it in a glass of water and consume. Add it to your food as garnish and have it.

6. Turmeric

Belonging to the ginger family, turmeric is believed to have lots of potential medicinal value. Turmeric suppresses chronic inflammation, which reduces the activity of Xanthine oxidase (an enzyme which produces uric acid).

How to use: Turmeric can be consumed after mixing it in the milk, Haldi Doodh as it is popularly known in India.

7. Cherries

A study conducted by Boston University found that patients with gout who consumed cherries over a two-day period showed a 35 percent lower risk of gout attacks, as compared to those who did not eat the fruit. The findings indicated that consuming cherries (up to three servings, a single serving containing one half cup or 10 to 12 cherries) or cherry extract lowers the risk of gout attack.

 

Source:

http://food.ndtv.com/health/7-natural-home-remedies-for-gout-1650166

HOW TO DO A PROPER HEAVY METAL DETOX

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In an age where millions of people are flocking to the internet and seminars to discover the latest about health because they feel doctors may not be up to date, The Medical Medium stands out as a popular go to for many.

 

With a radio show on Hay House, Anthony William draws from his astounding connection to a ‘high-level’ spirit, as he calls it, and shares incredible health information to many. In his book Medical Medium: Secrets Behind Chronic and Mystery Illness and How to Finally HealAnthony talks about the unknown reasons behind some of the many popular illnesses that plague people today. He also provides great insight into how one can treat and heal their bodies back to a healthy state – something that is rather refreshing in this day and age.

Written by Anthony William, Medical Medium: Secrets Behind Chronic and Mystery Illness and How to Finally Heal 

Do you suffer from chronic health problems and have yet to find the answers you seek? If you feel that you have been searching for answers for far too long, you are not alone.

You may already be doing everything you can think of to keep yourself healthy. You stick to your organic diet. You get as much exercise as you can tolerate. You meditate. You take your daily supplements. You take time for yourself. As far as you can tell, you’re doing everything right, and yet, your symptoms persist. Fatigue. Migraine headaches. Joint pain. Brain fog. Sluggishness. Inflammation. Constipation and other digestive disturbances. Susceptibility to infections. Nervousness and anxiety. Insomnia. Poor memory. Yeast and bacterial overgrowth. Skin eruptions. Attentional deficits. Mood dysregulation.

Sadly, these types of symptoms are becoming more and more commonplace. If you suffer from any one of these on a regular basis, odds are you have been to countless health professionals, scoured the internet, and read everything you can get your hands on, awaiting relief that never comes, or lasts only a short while. You may even have been told that it’s “all in your head,” that it’s “hormonal,” or “it’s just stress.” Yet as your symptoms continue, you keep asking yourself “What have I missed? Why does my body still feel this way?”

In this modern era, we are bombarded by toxins of every kind imaginable. Our bodies are subjected to an onslaught of dangerous chemicals on a daily basis from things like air pollution, plastics, and industrial cleaning agents, not to mention the thousands of new chemicals introduced into our environment every year.

Toxins also saturate our water reservoirs, fall down from the sky, and hide out in our homes and workplaces. This has become an unfortunate reality of modern life. However, if you are experiencing any of the above symptoms, there’s a good chance that a particular class of toxins are to blame. They are known as toxic heavy metals. Heavy metal toxicity—from metals such as mercury, aluminum, copper, cadmium, nickel, arsenic, and lead—represents one of the greatest threats to our health and well-being. While heavy metal toxicity is quite common, it is not commonly diagnosed. This is because heavy metal toxicity is an elusive adversary. It stays well-hidden within our bodies, never revealing itself unless you are actively looking for it.

“Heavy metal toxicity—from metals such as mercury, aluminum, copper, cadmium, nickel, arsenic, and lead—represents one of the greatest threats to our health and well-being.”

Toxic heavy metals are virtually everywhere, and are present in things we come in contact with every day, such as aluminum cans and aluminum foil, batteries, metal cookware, old paint, and even the foods we eat. For instance, pesticides and herbicides (which are hard to completely avoid even on a strict organic diet), are a common source of heavy metals. As a result, most of us are carrying around heavy metals that have been with us for almost our whole lives and which have burrowed deep inside our tissues. Unfortunately, it is these “old” metals, the ones that have been lurking in our system for prolonged periods of time, that pose the greatest threat.

For example, over time toxic heavy metals can oxidize, causing damage to surrounding tissue and promoting inflammation. They literally poison our bodies, and can inflict damage on virtually every system and organ, including our brain, liver, digestive system, and other parts of our nervous system. Toxic heavy metals put an immense burden on our immune system, leaving us vulnerable to a variety of illnesses.

While toxins of every kind are harmful, heavy metals pose a unique threat. Not only are they damaging in their own right, they are also a form of neurotoxin (a poison that disrupts nerve function and confuses your immune system). Heavy metal neurotoxins can inflame and irritate our central nervous system (especially our brain), causing multiple symptoms such as memory loss, brain fog, fatigue, and depression. Toxic heavy metals can also promote inflammation in the digestive tract, releasing poisons into our gut as well. As if this isn’t bad enough, heavy metals also serve as a source of food for viruses, bacteria, parasites, and other pathogens in our body.

For example, heavy metals can serve as a feeding ground for Streptococcus A or B, E. coli, C. difficile, H. pylori, and yeast cells. This can create an overgrowth of multiple bacteria in our gut, resulting in a condition known as SIBO (small intestinal bacterial overgrowth), which is characterized by bloating, abdominal pain, diarrhea, constipation (or both), and can lead to nutrient deficiencies. Additionally, when viruses such as Epstein-Barr and shingles feed off toxic heavy metals, this can produce symptoms such as tingling, numbness, fatigue, anxiety, heart palpitations, ringing in the ears, dizziness and vertigo, as well as neck pain, knee pain, foot pain, pain in the back of the head, and a variety of other aches and pains that are often attributed to other causes.

“Over time toxic heavy metals can oxidize, causing damage to surrounding tissue and promoting inflammation.”

When pathogens such as Epstein-Barr, shingles, and many others feed on heavy metals, they transform the metals into an especially aggressive form of neurotoxin. This secondary neurotoxin is the by-product and waste of these pathogens, and has the ability to travel throughout the body and wreak even greater havoc on the central nervous system. This phenomenon can throw medical communities off track, leading to incorrect diagnoses such as Lyme disease, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, and many other autoimmune disorders, because blood tests start to lose their accuracy when the bloodstream becomes full of neurotoxic by-product and pathogen waste. These neurotoxins can even cross the blood-brain barrier, where they short circuit our neurotransmitters (the chemicals our brain cells use to communicate with each other). In turn, this can trigger depression and other mood disorders, memory loss, and a variety of other cognitive impairments.

It is therefore no surprise that heavy metals play a prominent role in our current epidemics of “mystery illnesses” and degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and dementia. Despite all of this, heavy metal toxicity remains a relatively unexplored (and untreated) phenomenon—for everything we know about the dangers of heavy metals, there is a great deal more that has yet to be discovered. Heavy metals just may be the premier “hidden antagonizer” and mystery illness trigger in so many of us, contributing to all of the aforementioned symptoms—and more.

Mercury

While all toxic heavy metals wreak havoc on the body, mercury is an especially insidious beast, responsible for untold suffering throughout human history. Once touted as a cure-all for every disease imaginable, we now know the exact opposite is true. Mercury toxicity can be responsible for countless disorders and symptoms, including anxiety, ADHD, OCD, autism, bipolar disorder, neurological disorders, epilepsy, tingling, numbness, tics, twitches, spasms, hot flashes, heart palpitations, hair loss, brittle nails, weakness, memory loss, confusion, insomnia, loss of libido, fatigue, migraines, endocrine disorders, and depression. In fact, mercury poisoning is at the core of depression for a large percentage of people who suffer from it.

Historically, before its toxic effects were known (and acknowledged), mercury was believed to be a fountain of youth and a source of eternal wisdom. In ancient Chinese medicine, mercury was so revered that countless emperors died from mercury elixirs that healers vowed would end all their problems. Mercury elixirs (known as “quicksilver”) were also popular in the Western world. In the 1800s, medical students in the U.S. and England were taught to give a glass of mercury water to any patient who was ill, regardless of age, gender, or symptoms. Even after the medical community abandoned the practice of dispensing this misguided remedy, opportunities for mercury exposure were (and are) still plentiful: Industries were dumping mercury into rivers, lakes, and other waterways, and dentists were using mercury amalgam fillings (and some still are).

In the 1800s and the first half of the 1900s, hat production relied on a mercury-based solution designed to expedite the felting process, putting hat-makers at extreme risk. In fact, the average hat-maker had about three to five years to live after starting work at a factory before madness and death set in. This is where the term “mad as a hatter” comes from: almost all mental illness of the time was from mercury poisoning (and the terrible irony is that for a long time the “treatment” for mental illness was—you guessed it—mercury!). And it wasn’t just hat-makers who suffered; anyone of that era who wore a felt hat got an infusion of mercury every time their brow sweated!

“Mercury poisoning is at the core of depression for a large percentage of people who suffer from it.”

Source:

http://www.collective-evolution.com/2016/09/05/how-to-do-a-proper-heavy-metal-detox/

8 WAYS HEMP CAN KEEP YOU HEALTHY IN 2017

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Hemp truly is a miracle plant. Aside from being an amazing, sustainable fibre for clothing and building material, the seeds can also provide the body with some amazing health benefits.

 

1. Hemp Contains Cannabidiol

While hemp barely contains THC — the chemical that gets people high — it does share many of the other plant compounds, most notably cannabidiol.  Also known as CBD, this cannabinoid has been shown to have many health giving properties. CBD is found in the flowers, stalks, and leaves, but not the seeds of the hemp plant.

There have been some high profile cases of children with rare forms of epilepsy who, after taking cannabidiol made from hemp, have reduced their seizures from hundreds a week to almost zero. In the UK it has recently been reclassified as medicine and is under review by the Medical Healthcare Regulatory Agency (MHRA), while in the United States its legality varies state by state.

2. Hemp Contains Powerful Antioxidants

January is the month of the detox diet. We’ve overindulged on sugar, are oozing alcohol from our very pores, and feel like a walking chemical disaster zone. So while it’s the perfect time to hit the raw juices and cut out chocolate for a few days, there’s actually a toxic battle being waged 365 days of the year that hemp can help us keep in order.

Our cells, just by breathing and consuming energy, create toxic waste called free radicals, as does exposure to chemicals, pollutants, and emotional stress. Free radicals are molecules that are missing an electron and, not content by their incomplete status, steal electrons from other proteins in the body, causing what’s known as oxidative stress. Left unchecked, this can damage our DNA, cause the body to perform poorly, and lead to the onset of age related diseases.

To counteract the damage by free radicals, the body produces antioxidants, which can also be found in most fruit, vegetables, nuts, and seeds.

Turns out the hemp plant is packed full of antioxidants, with studies showing our old friend cannabidiol to be a powerful source, even more so than vitamin C and E. The plant also contains other free radical fighters such as flavonoids.   

3. Hemp Is Anti-Inflammatory

Inflammation is a healthy biological process that forms part of our immune response to injury or infection. But it’s when that targeted inflammation turns into something more chronic that the problems can start. Indeed, long term, systemic inflammation is viewed as a precursor to a host of illnesses such as cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, and neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.

But the hemp plant can be a natural, drug-free way to reduce inflammation in the body. The main player in the piece once more is cannabidiol (CBD), with studies showing it to reduce the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines, the signalling proteins made by immune cells that are overproduced in patients with autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis.  

Scientists have also noted that CBD activates the Vanilloid receptor (TRPV-1), known to mediate pain perception, inflammation, and body temperature.

4. Hemp Helps Calm Your Mind and Protects the Brain

One of the reasons many people take CBD extracted from hemp is because they find it helps them with feelings of anxiety. This isn’t because they’re stoned — CBD doesn’t activate the same receptors in the brain as its psychoactive cousin, THC — but it is a partial agonist of the serotonin receptor 5HT1-A, interacting just enough to bring about an anti-anxiety effect.

Studies also suggest CBD’s ability to promote hippocampal neurogenesis (the part of the brain responsible for memory, emotion, and the autonomic nervous system) could explain why anxiety is reduced.

But it’s not just hemp’s anti-anxiety benefits that are a boost to our brains. CBD has even been declared a neuroprotectant by the U.S. government, and studies show the cannabinoid may slow the onset of Alzheimer’s by reducing neuroinflammation.

5. Hemp May Improve Heart Health

Studies show a diet rich in the essential fatty acid Omega 3 can lower the risk of heart attacks, reduces cholesterol, and is both anti-thrombotic (prevents blood clots) and anti-atherosclerotic (prevents the buildup of fatty deposits in your arteries).

Most studies on heart health talk of Omega 3 source from fish oil, but if you are vegetarian or concerned about polluted fish stocks, hemp seeds could provide a plant based alternative.

6. Hemp Can Help Balance Your Endocannabinoid System

Okay, so you may be saying to yourself at this point, “I didn’t even know I had an endocannabinoid system, let alone that it might need balancing.”

You’re not alone. The endocannabinoid system was discovered in the 1990s and is basically a vast network of receptors and cannabis-like chemicals (endocannabinoids) in the body. Its purpose is to modulate functions such as sleep, appetite, mood, pain, and reproduction. Sometimes this system can get out of balance, with scientists believing this to be a contributing factor behind many illnesses.

CBD, while not interacting directly with the endocannabinoid receptors, does increase the levels of the feel good endocannabinoid Anandamide in the body, which scientists believe is just one strategy to strengthen a depleted endocannabinoid system.

7. Hemp Helps Get Your Hormones in Balance

If you’re a woman, you’ve probably experienced hormonal imbalances such as premenstrual syndrome (PMS) at some point in your life. One contributing factor is thought to be elevated levels of the hormone prolactin.

Gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), found in hemp seeds, produces prostaglandin E1, which studies show reduces the hormone disrupting effects of prolactin. In a study of women with PMS, taking one gram of essential fatty acids (including 210 mg of GLA) per day resulted in a significant reduction in symptoms.

8. Hemp Oil Is Good for Your Skin

Whether you’ve got problem skin conditions such as acne or eczema or you just want to prevent premature aging, the hemp plant can give your skin a boost from the inside and out.

Remember what we said previously about antioxidants? Our skin is bombarded on a daily basis by free radicals and toxins, so if our beauty basic is something that is both moisturizing and provides an antioxidant shield, it might just be the ultimate anti-ageing double whammy.

CBD is currently being touted as the ultimate, supercharged ingredient for problem skin due to its anti-inflammatory nature and anti-seborrheic effects — which basically means it prevents the overproduction of sebum in the skin commonly associated with conditions such as eczema, dermatitis, and acne.  

So, there we have it. All hail the mighty hemp!

Who knew that it was such a health hero of a plant? It can literally work its magic from our heads to our toes, and from inside our cells through to the biggest organ of our body, the skin.

Whether using it as superfood supplement in the form of cold pressed hemp seed oil or taking hemp extract CBD oil to keep our health issues at bay, it is most certainly an ancient answer to many of our modern day woes.   

Hemp — be humble no more. Join us with pride in a healthy 2017.

Source:

http://www.collective-evolution.com/2017/01/11/8-ways-hemp-can-keep-you-healthy-in-2017/

5 Gym Mistakes That Will Prevent You From Losing Weight

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YOU’RE WORKING HARD at the gym, gutting out another routine, but you’re not seeing any progress. Wonder why? You might be making some mistakes.

 

But mistakes can be corrected, and that’s why we’ve put together this list of reasons why you may not be losing weight, even though you’re working up a big sweat:

1) Always Doing the Same Workout

“People often fall into the trap of hitting the treadmill for 30 minutes every time they work out,” says Rachel Cosgrove, owner of Results Fitness in Santa Clarita, Calif. “It works at first, but then your body starts to adjust to the routine, and you burn fewer calories.” To keep seeing results, change one workout factor like intensity or duration every trip to the gym, then completely switch your activity every three to four weeks.

2) Distractions

If you can watch some TV during your workout, you’re already not working hard enough. Instead of relaxing while you run, try some interval training. After a five- to six-minute warm-up on a cardio machine, work as hard as you can for one minute, then reduce the intensity for two minutes. Alternate back and forth for five rounds, making sure to increase the number of intervals you do each workout.

 

3) Holding the Treadmill Handlebars

When your arms take your body weightoff your legs, you burn fewer calories. “If you have to hold on or lean, go slower,” says Cosgrove. Supporting yourself without assistance gives you a better core workout as well. And don’t ratchet up the incline too high—you’re just wasting time if you’re holding on for dear life.

4) Not Using the Incline on the Treadmill

Look, you’re probably better off going for a run around the block or your local park, but if that’s not an option, then make sure you’re at least using some incline on the treadmill, which will better simulate the effects of going for a run outside and increase the demand on your glutes and hamstrings. About 1%–2% is a good benchmark for running outside, depending on your treadmill.

5) Overfueling

You don’t need to sip sports drinks all afternoon, then eat an energy bar at the gym, and then follow that up with a post-workout shake. Instead, limit yourself to about 300 calories right before your sweat session—the same number you burn in an average 30-minute workout. Any more and you’re not going to get thinner.

Artificial intelligence set to transform the patient experience

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ORLANDO – From Watson to Siri, Alexa to Cortana, consumers and patients have become much more familiar with artificial intelligence and natural language processing in recent years. Pick your terminology: machine learning, cognitive computing, neural networks/deep learning. All are becoming more commonplace – in our smartphones, in our kitchens – and as they continue to evolve at a rapid pace, expectations are high for how they’ll impact healthcare.

Skepticism is, too. And even fear.

As it sparks equal part doubt and hope (and not a little hype) from patients, physicians and technologists, a panel of IT experts at HIMSS17 discussed the future of AI in healthcare on Sunday afternoon.

Kenneth Kleinberg, managing director at The Advisory Board Company, spoke with execs from two medical AI startups: Cory Kidd, CEO of Catalia Health, and Jay Parkinson, MD, founder and CMO of Sherpaa.

Catalia developed a small robot, the Mabu Personal Healthcare Companion, aimed at assisting with “long-term patient engagement.” It’s able to have tailored conversations with patients that can evolve over time as the platform – developed using principles of behavioral psychology – gains daily data about treatment plans, health challenges and outcomes.

Sherpaa is billed as an “on-demand doctor practice” that connects subscribers with physicians, via its app, who can make diagnoses, order lab tests and imaging and prescribe medications at locations near the patient. “Seventy percent of time, the doctors have a diagnosis,” said Parkinson. “Most cases can be solved virtually.” Rather than just a virtual care, platform, it enables “care coordination with local clinicians in the community,” he said.

In this fast-changing environment, there are many questions to ask: “We’re starting to see these AI systems appear in other parts of our lives,” said Kleinberg. “How valuable are they? How capable are they? What kind of authority will these systems attain?”

And also: “What does it mean to be a physician and patient in this new age?”

Kidd said he’s a “big believer – when it’s used right.”

Parkinson agreed: “It has to be targeted to be successful.”

Another important question: For all the hype and enthusiasm about AI, “where on the inflection curve are we?” asked Kleinberg. “Is it going to take off and get a lot better? And does it offer more benefits at the patient engagement level? Or as an assistant to clinicians?”

For Kidd, it’s clearly the former, as Catalia’s technology deploys AI to help patients manage their own chronic conditions.

“The kinds of algorithms we’re developing, we’re building up psychological models of patients with every encounter,” he explained. “We start with two types of psychologies: The psychology of relationships – how people develop relationships over time – as well as the psychology of  behavior change: How do we chose the right technique to use with this person right now?”

The platform also gets “smarter” as it become more attuned to “what we call our biographical model, which is kind of a catch-all for everything else we learn in conversation,” he said. “This man has a couple cats, this woman’s son calls her every Sunday afternoon, whatever it might be that we’ll use later in conversations.”

Consumer applications driving clinical innovations
AI is fast advancing in healthcare in large part because it’s evolving so quickly in the consumer space. Take Apple’s Siri, for instance: “The more you talk to it, the better it makes our product,” said Kidd. “Literally. We’re licensing the same voice recognition and voice outlet technology thats running on your iPhone right now.”

For his part, Parkinson sees problems with simply adding AI technology onto the doctor-patient relationship as it currently exists. Most healthcare encounters involve “an oral conversation between doctor and patient,” he said, where “retention is 15 percent or less.”

For AI to truly be an effective augmentation of clinical practices, that conversation “needs to be less oral and more text-driven,” he said. “I’m worried about layering AI on a broken delivery process.”

But machine learning is starting to change the came in areas large and small throughout healthcare. Kleinberg pointed to the area of imaging recognition. IBM, for instance, made headlines when it acquired Merge Healthcare for $1 billion in 2015, allowing Watson to “see” medical images – the largest data source in healthcare.

Then there are the various iPhone apps that say they can help diagnose skin cancer with photos users take of their own moles. Kleinberg said he mentioned the apps to a dermatologist friend of his.

“I want to quote him very carefully: He said, ‘Naaaaahhhhhh.'”

But Parkinson took a different view: “About 25 percent of our cases have photos attached,” he said. “Right now, if it’s a weird mole we’re sending people out to see a dermatologist. But I would totally love to replace that (doctor) with a robot. And I don’t think that’s too far off.”

In the near term, however, “you would be amazed at the image quality that people taking photographs think are good photographs,” he said. “So there’s a lot of education for the patient about how to take a picture.”

The patient’s view
If artificial intelligence is having promising if controversial impact so far on the clinical side, one of the most important aspects of this evolution also still has some questions to answer. Most notably: What do the patient think?

One one hand, Kleinberg pointed to AI pilots where patients paired with humanoid robots “felt a sense of loss” after the test ended. “One woman followed the robot out and waved goodbye to it.”

On the other, “some people are horrified that we would be letting machines play a part in a role that should be played by humans,” he said.

The big question, then: “Do we have place now for society and a system such as this?” he asked.

“The first time I put something like this in a patient’s home was 10 years ago now,” said Kidd.  “We’ve seen, with the various versions of AI and robots, that people can develop an attachment to them. At the same time, typical conversation is two or three minutes. It’s not like people spend all day talking with these.”

It’s essential, he argued, to be up front with patients about just what the technology can and should do.

“How you introduce this, and how you couch the terminology around this technology and what it can and can’t do is actually very important in making it effective for patients,” said Kidd. “We don’t try to convince anyone that this is a doctor or a nurse. As long as we set up the relationship in the right way so people understand how it works and what it can do, it can be very effective.

“There is this cultural conception that AI and robotics can be scary,” he conceded. “But what I’ve seen, putting this in front of patients is that this is a tool that can do something and be very effective, and people like it a lot.”

Source:

http://www.healthcareitnews.com/news/artificial-intelligence-set-transform-patient-experience-many-questions-still-be-answered

Doctor convicted of botched surgery gets life sentence

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Ex-neurosurgeon Christopher Duntsch will spend the rest of his life in prison for maiming patients. A jury returned the verdict Monday afternoon, ending a yearslong investigation into dozens of botched surgeries that resulted in two deaths and multiple cases of paralysis.

Duntsch was the focus of D’s November cover story—in a press conference after the verdict, prosecutors proclaimed that the Memphis native was the first physician in the nation to be convicted for behavior inside the operating room. His outcomes were so poor, so beyond the accepted standard of care, that a grand jury indicted him on five counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon as well as a single count of harming an elderly patient. He started practicing at Baylor Regional Medical Center at Plano and secured privileges at Dallas Medical Center despite having had a patient, Kellie Martin, bleed to death during a surgery. His best friend, Jerry Summers, was left a quadriplegic. At Dallas Medical Center, Floella Brown died of a stroke after an operation and Mary Efurd was severely harmed. He practiced at Legacy Surgical Center in Plano and ended his career at University General Hospital. Prosecutors identified more than 30 patients at the four hospitals who were harmed at his hands in a period of just over 18 months.

 Image Credit – Inside Edition

During two weeks of testimony in the sentencing portion of the trial, prosecutors zoomed into the 17 years he spent in medical school, residency, and fellowships. They argued that he had to have known that he was likely to hurt the next person he operated on, and he did it anyway. The jury, in returning the guilty verdict after four hours of deliberation, agreed.

A looming print deadline kept me out of the courtroom on Monday for the punishment verdict, but The Dallas Morning News did a good job chronicling the final day of testimony, which included comments from many of his victims:

They heard from Philip Mayfield, who cries when he thinks of all of his son’s football games that he hasn’t been able to watch because he often passes out from chronic pain, and Barry Morguloff, who limps with a brace and a cane as a result of irreparable nerve damage in his spine.

They heard from Jeff Cheney, who woke up paralyzed from the neck down on his right side, and Jackie Troy, who talks in a permanent whisper and almost died from an infection after she was left with puncture wounds in her throat after Duntsch performed neck surgery on her.

One of the questions raised by reporters in the afternoon was why he came to Dallas. Civil lawsuits filed in Memphis show that he was broke before coming here. He spent about 18 months away from the operating room doing research and pursuing patented medical technology. He took credit for discovering inventions that his partners later claimed that he stole from them. He involved high school friends in two businesses meant to commercialize the technology, then failed live up to his promises. They sued, and the emails came out: “My reputation has been ruined,” he wrote one morning at 4 a.m. “I have lost both companies.” When the money ran out, he began looking for opportunities to practice. He settled on Dallas.

Drs. Michael Rimlawi and Douglas Won, themselves now indicted in a separate federal kickback scheme, recruited Duntsch to town. He was offered a $600,000 annual salary, and stood to earn 40 percent of all revenue he generated beyond $800,000 a year. Prosecutors said this greed fueled him. His ego ballooned, as evidenced in other emails in which he compared himself to God and Einstein. He once wrote that he was a “mother fucker stone cold killer.” Drug and alcohol abuse dogged him throughout his career, but he never tested positive. Substance abuse allegations largely stayed out of the trial until the sentencing phase—the outcomes were poor enough that the state could center on those to secure his sentence.

Source:

http://www.dmagazine.com/frontburner/2017/02/ex-neurosurgeon-christopher-duntsch-sentenced-to-life/

India will give all its senior citizen a biometrics enabled smart health card

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Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has begun tabling the Union Budgets 2017-18 in the parliament. As the year 2016 approached its closing, the country grasped the sudden wave of digitization with the Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s decision of demonetization. In line with this, the implementation of Aadhaar in every process involving the government has also been given a good push. The latest development on Aadhaar is that senior citizens would receive Aadhaar-based smart cards for their health and well being.

Although details were not shared, the Aadhaar-based smart cards would contain health details of senior citizens. Jaitley further said that the pilot service of these cards would take off in 15 cities initially in India beginning this year. The announcement for this new initiative shows how the government is focusing on the path of making Aadhaar the core platform in different services. Very soon, we will be introduced to an Aadhaar-based payment system which will use one’s biometrics for transactions. The recently launched BHIM app has also been integrated with UID for Aadhaar-based transactions.

The government recently said that as of now more than 111 crore citizens in the country have an Aadhaar number, and this unit covers more than 99 percent of the Indian adult population. Post demonetization, the enrollment for Aadhaar also increased to 7 to 8 lakh per day as against 5 to 6 lakh till October 2016. The government also reported an increase of 2.69 crore transactions of Aadhaar-based enabled payments in November 2016, which increased to 3.73 crore in December 2016 and 2.06 crore transactions in the first half of January.

Source:

http://www.bgr.in/news/union-budget-2017-18-fm-arun-jaitley-announces-aadhaar-based-smart-cards-for-senior-citizens/

The Nutritional Facts of Turbinado Sugar

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Turbinado sugar is obtained from the initial pressings of the sugar cane. Because this sugar undergoes very little processing, it is considered a healthier alternative to white sugar. The turbinado sugar crystals are much coarser than those of sugar that has been processed further. They retain much of the taste of molasses, which is a by-product that occurs naturally during sugar processing. The sugar gets its name from the centrifugal procedure used for drying the crystals: The name comes from “turbine.”

Unlike white sugar, which has been thoroughly processed, turbinado sugar is created with the first sugar cane pressings. Aficionados of the health benefits of turbinado sugar point to its health benefit of less calories than white sugar. However, turbinado sugar attracts moisture with its particularly soft texture.

Spoonful for spoonful, this results in less calories because the weight of the water in the moisture is taken into account. Turbinado sugar is crushed directly from the harvested sugar cane, and the juice is allowed to evaporate naturally then crystallize into its characteristic large crystals, so much of the vitamins and minerals in the sugar cane are retained in the turbinado sugar.

Because turbinado sugar is obtained in such a natural manner, with almost no processing, it is often referred to as “sugar in the raw” or “raw sugar.” Once the sugar cane has been cut, the stems are split open and the juice is extracted through a process of slow boiling, layer by layer. The end result is completely natural and very high quality sugar, with all the natural color of the molasses retained in the finished crystals.

The natural yellow color of the raw sugar must be removed to create white sugar. During processing, bone char is used to help produce the pristine color of white sugar. This is not suitable for vegans, because the bone char comes from the bones of cows. However, turbinado sugar and natural brown sugar are both ideal for vegan diets, as neither are processed in any way other than the completely natural evaporating process, with no chemicals involved.

Every 100 grams of turbinado sugar contains 100 milligrams of potassium; 85 milligrams of calcium; 23 milligrams of magnesium; 3.9 milligrams of phosphorus; and 1.3 milligrams of iron. The total mineral salt content is 740 milligrams. A single teaspoon of turbinado sugar contains 20 calories, of which just 5 grams are complex carbohydrates.

Once the water element of the sugar cane has evaporated, the remaining crystals are full of the same nutrients that were found in the growing sugar cane. These include 0.20 milligrams of niacin; 32.57 milligrams of calcium; 0.09 milligrams of copper; 0.57 milligrams of iron; 2.49 milligrams of magnesium; 0.09 milligrams of manganese; 0.01 milligram of phosphorus; 162.86 milligrams of potassium.

Significance

Healthy dieters may want to bear in mind that 99 percent of white sugar consists of nothing but calories. Any nutritional content it might once have had is destroyed during processing. If you substitute turbinado sugar for white sugar in your diet, you will gain nutritional benefits along with the pleasure of its sweet, caramel flavor.

Source:

http://www.livestrong.com/article/253642-the-nutritional-facts-of-turbinado-sugar/

Eight Surprising Products With High Fructose Corn Syrup

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Although many will argue that High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) isn’t bad for you, there is a ton of debate that warrants avoiding the ingredient. Many nutritionists blame HFCS as a major reason for the rise in our nation’s obesity rates. Further, there is a theory that the body processes fructose in high fructose corn syrup differently than cane or beet sugar, which has an effect on how our metabolic-regulating hormones function and can cause our liver to release more fat into our bloodstream. This can result in our bodies wanting to eat more, while potentially storing more fat. 

HFCS is a cheap ingredient and as a result, creeps into many foods that seem otherwise healthy. Whether or not you believe HFCS is bad, it is good to at least understand what kinds of foods actually contain HFCS, so that if you do want to avoid the controversial ingredient, you can do so. Here are some highly popular foods that contain HFCS, and ways you can circumvent consumption:

1. Juice Cocktails
If a juice drink is not made with 100 percent juice, it generally contains a large amount of HFCS, along with other artificial and natural ingredients and flavors. Some examples include: Ocean Spray Cranberry Juice, Capri-Sun Juices, and Tropicana OrangeAde.

Non-HFCS Solution: Opt for buying drinks that are 100 percent pure juice. Even better, eat the fruit. This will give you the fiber benefits as well.

2. Soda
Believe it or not, even sodas containing some juice have HFCS. This includes Orangina, a seemingly healthy soda.

Non-HFCS Solution: Try mixing 100 percent juices with seltzer for a sweeter, more natural alternative. Also, San Pellegrino soda flavors uses all cane sugar and no HFCS.

3. Breakfast Cereal
Even seemingly healthy breakfast cereals contain HFCS. For instance: Kellogg’s Raisin Bran Crunch, Special K, and Smart Start Healthy Heart.

Non-HFCS Solution: Read nutrition labels carefully when in doubt. However, some good brands to try include: Kashi and Nature’s Path.

4. Yogurt
Once again, seemingly healthy foods like yogurt  often contain HFCS. Often, it is found in those that contain “fruit” and other sweetened varieties, such as Dannon and Yoplait.

Non-HFCS Solution: Opt for plain varieties, which often don’t contain HFCS (always check to be sure). Mix fresh or frozen berries or fruit into your plain yogurt to add some natural sweetness. You’ll also benefit from some natural fiber as well!

5. Salad Dressings
Believe it or not, HFCS is often added into seemingly un-sweet items like salad dressings.

Non-HFCS Solution: Make your own dressings when possible because you’ll know what ingredients are being used. Find high quality oils and vinegars, even those that are infused with spices, to create yummy salad toppers.

6. Breads and Baked Goods
Wonderbread, as well as other “healthier” bread products, such as Pepperidge Farm’s line of 100 percent whole grain breads and Sara Lee Heart Healthy Whole Grain Bread are guilty of HFCS use. This is a classic case of ‘HFCS hiding behind whole grain marketing’.

Non-HFCS Solution: Once again, read your labels. Sticking with whole grain baked items are often a good choice, but find those that don’t contain HFCS. A favorite of mine is Arnold’s Natural Fiber and Flax bread.

7. Candy and Candy Bars
Many name brand candy, such as Hershey’s Watchamacallet, and Lifesavers contain HFCS.

Non-HFCS Solution: Buy higher quality candy and/or chocolate bars, such as Equal Exchange and Endangered Species Chocolates. Being of higher quality, even a small piece of these chocolates can be more rewarding than a whole Watchamacallit.

8. Nutrition Bars
Don’t let the word “nutrition” fool you. Many nutrition bars, such as Power Bars, Balance Bars and Zone Perfect Bars contain HFCS.

Non-HFCS Solution: Be scrupulous in reading your labels. Good brands to try: Odwalla and Kashi Go Lean Bars.

In short, it is always best to read the ingredient lists on products. This is the best way to tell if high fructose corn syrup has infiltrated your chosen product. Lastly, try to make things yourself and eat whole foods. If the food isn’t processed, you can be sure there is no nasty HFCS in it!

Source:

http://www.more.com/lifestyle/exercise-health/eight-surprising-products-high-fructose-corn-syrup

Oregano Tea Benefits

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Drinking oregano tea has long been a tradition in many parts of the world as a home remedy for a number of different ailments.  In parts of the Mediterranean, oregano tea is offered to those suffering from sore throats, congestion, and colds.  It has also been used to help with insomnia and anxiety. In addition, claims have been made that by drinking oregano tea, it can ease headaches and menstrual pain and has also been given for jaundice as well as gastronomical issues including flatulence and diarrhea.

In his book, The Herb Book, John Lust lists another benefit that it can also ease motion sickness symptoms and when added to bath water, may have the effect of being a tonic. Mr. Lust also suggests that it may be used to relieve PMS symptoms and pain.

Many of these claims are anecdotal and it is unlikely to cause any ill effect if you wish to try oregano tea for any of the above listed symptoms, unless you are allergic to the mint family of plants. Oregano belongs to the mint family.

However, we do know that oregano contains many useful compounds including quercetin, eriocitrin, luteolin-7-O-glucoside, apigenin-7-O-glucoside, luteolin, apigenin which are all flavenoids with beneficial health benefits. In addition, it contains rosmaric acid, a polyphenol.

In a study published in the International Food Journal of Sciences and Nutrition in 2007, it was shown that drinking oregano tea does have antioxidant results as well as resulting in lowered LDL (bad cholesterol) levels. The authors of the study suggest that this is due to the flavenoids and polyphenols that are drawn out of the herb and into the tea water. The study also found that drinking oregano tea had more pronounced benefits than thyme or wild thyme teas, which were compared by the study’s researchers.

There is no standard method for making oregano tea, and the amount of oregano varies depending on who you ask. However, the study referred to above indicated that the healthy benefits of lowering LDL is “dose dependent,” meaning the larger the quantity of oregano used, the more of a benefit in reducing LDL will be seen.

Oregano Tea Notes

Oregano tea can have a bitter taste, especially the more oregano you use along with longer infusion times. Bear this in mind when you make it. In order to adjust for any bitter taste, consider sweetening with honey, to taste. Honey has it’s own health benefits as well.

You can make oregano tea from either fresh or dried leaves.

Technically, herbal “teas” are referred to as “tisanes” because they are not made from oolong tea leaves. However, we now almost universally in the western world refer to anything herbal infused in hot water as “tea.”

Oregano Tea Recipe

Ingredients:

1 1/2 Teaspoons dried organic oregano leaves (Use 2 Teaspoons, tightly packed if using fresh leaves)

8 liquid ounces of water

1 Teaspoon of honey (more or less, to taste).

Method:

Bring water to a boil in a saucepan. When water has boiled, remove from heat. Add oregano leaves and allow to steep for five minutes. You could allow it to steep longer, but remember that the longer it steeps, the more of a bitter taste it will have.

Strain the infused water into a mug. Add honey if desired and stir well.

If making more than 8 liquid ounces, increase the amount of oregano accordingly.

 

Source:

http://healthyhappybeautiful.com/recipes-for-healthy-happy-living/healthy-benefits-of-oregano-tea-with-recipe/

CDC updates vaccine guidelines for flu, HPV and more

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Roll up your sleeves, America. A national advisory panel of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has released its 2017 advisory for recommended shots affecting adults.

This year’s advisory revises guidance on seasonal flu shots by eliminating nasal flu vaccines and modifying flu-shot advice for people with egg allergy. It also tweaks recommendations for vaccines against human papillomavirus (HPV), hepatitis B and meningococcal disease.

Doctors use the annually updated vaccine schedule to ensure that patients receive the right vaccines for their age, medical condition and other risk factors. The entire list includes 13 vaccinations.

“All adults need immunizations to help them prevent getting and spreading serious disease that could result in poor health, missed work, medical bills, and not being able to care for family,” said the report’s lead author, Dr. David Kim. He is deputy associate director for adult immunizations in the CDC’s Immunization Services Division.

The CDC sets the adult immunization schedule based on recommendations from the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), a group of medical and public health experts whose advice reflects the latest science.

Here are the major changes:

•No more nasal flu vaccine. Unlike traditional flu shots made from dead virus, the nasal flu vaccine, marketed as FluMist, is made from a weakened form of influenza virus. Studies have found it largely ineffective.

•Flu vaccine for people with egg allergy. The “major change” is that egg-allergic people, whether they have mild or more serious allergy, “can receive any age-appropriate” flu vaccine, said Dr. Sandra Fryhofer, the American College of Physicians’ liaison to the ACIP.

Last year, people with more serious egg allergy were advised to stick with an egg-free flu vaccine, she explained.

The new guidance states that even people who develop symptoms like swelling, lightheadedness or breathing difficulties may get either type of flu shot. But they should get the shot under supervision of a health care provider who is able to recognize and manage severe allergic conditions, the committee advises.

•HPV vaccine for adolescents. Young people who receive their first dose of the HPV vaccine before age 15 and the second dose at least 5 months later may be vaccinated in just two doses, instead the three as was previously recommended.

The vaccine protects against cervical cancer and a number of other tumors linked to the human papillomavirus (HPV).

The American Cancer Society said it was supporting the new ACIP recommendation of a two-dose schedule for boys and girls who begin the vaccine regimen at ages 9 to 14.

“In the past several years, studies have shown the vaccine is even more effective than expected,” explained Debbie Saslow, senior director of HPV-Related and Women’s Cancers at the American Cancer Society (ACS). “This new two-dose regimen is easier to follow, and we now know is very effective in preventing HPV, which is linked to a half dozen types of cancer.”

Both the ACS and the CDC advisory committee still recommend three doses of the HPV vaccine for young adults who were not immunized as adolescents. The vaccine may be given to women through age 26 and men through age 21.

•New advice for people who are HIV positive. Adults with HIV should receive a two-dose series of MenACWY. This combination meningococcal vaccine protects against a potentially deadly bacterial infection of the brain and spinal cord.

•Hepatitis B for adults with chronic liver disease. The new vaccine schedule adds people infected with the hepatitis C virus to the list of those with chronic liver disease who could benefit from a Hep B vaccine series. Others who should receive these shots are people with: cirrhosis (scarring of the liver); fatty liver disease; alcoholic liver disease; autoimmune hepatitis; and people with elevated levels of certain liver enzymes.

“Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease is the most common liver disorder in western industrialized countries,” Fryhofer said. “If you’re obese, you’re more likely to have fat in your liver, which means that you would be on the list to get hepatitis B vaccination.”

•Adult vaccination rates and barriers. U.S. adult immunization rates fall short of recommended levels, according to the ACIP.

According to the CDC’s Kim, “Flu vaccine is especially important for people with chronic health conditions, pregnant women and older adults.”

Also of concern, only 20 percent of adults 19 and older have had a Tdap vaccine, which protects against tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis (whooping cough), the report noted.

Fryhofer said insurance affects the likelihood of vaccination. “People who have insurance are two to five times more likely to be vaccinated, because the cost issue’s a big barrier,” she explained.

Source:

http://www.chicagotribune.com/lifestyles/health/sc-2017-cdc-vaccine-guidelines-health-0215-20170208-story.html

Kasani’s Organic Baby and Toddler CookBook: Fresh, Homemade Foods for a Healthy Start

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42 chapters of tasty recipes every parent will love. The recipes are simple and easy to read. The family dinners include some flavorful recipes that any family will enjoy. Kasani’s Baby and Toddler CookBook is your guide to these important first years of eating. Find the building blocks of starting your child on solid foods, how to recognize food allergies, and easy ways to cook in bulk.

 

Recipes progress from single-ingredient purées to multi-flavor blends like Garden Vegetable combo and Beets Blueberry mesh. This book also includes oral allergy information as well as the best BPA free utensils for children. Stage 1 and Stage 2 foods are included. Most can be made ahead and frozen, many are easily adapted for grown-up tastes, and all include full nutritional value. Please consult with your pediatrician ahead of time for food allergies also included in depth. Free of pesticides, hormones, GMOs, and additives, these delicious purees promote strong immune systems and healthy growth.

Kasani’s Cafe’: Simple Recipes for Healthy Living

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Cookbooks have been around for well a long time now, dating back to time immemorial. The earliest cookbooks started from lists of recipes, currently known as haute cuisine, and were for recording author’s favorite dishes. Others were for the training of professional cooks for noble families, which made them short of content as peasant food, bread and vegetable dishes that were considered too simple for a recipe.

When it comes to Mediterranean foods, just know you are getting yourself into one of the healthiest diets in the world. A 2015 release of the U.S. Dietary Guidelines proposed this diet, besides its recommendation by several researchers too, with Ancel Keys, Ph. D being the first one to promote this diet after Second World War. According to a study by Keys and his colleagues, people in areas such as the Mediterranean where this eating style was popular had higher cardiovascular health than those in the US. Twenty awesome recipes are included in this book. Surrounding the Caribbean and Mediterranean Diet.

Table of Contents

Things You Probably Didn’t Know about Cookbooks
The Mediterranean Example; Grains, Veggies and Fish Diet
Mediterranean Chicken Stew with Cinnamon Couscous
Grilled Shrimp served with Garlic-Cilantro Sauce
Easy Seafood Paella Recipe
Jamaican Fried Snapper Recipe
Jamaican Steamed Fish Recipe
Baguette Recipe
Classic Potato Salad Recipe
Mexican Rice Recipe
Spaghetti Pasta Carbonara Recipe
Greek Potatoes Recipe
Simple Baked Chicken Drumstick Recipe
Chicken Cacciatore Recipe
Table Of Contents Continued:

Balsamic Glazed Chicken Recipe
Cajun Jambalaya Recipe
Lemon Cream Pasta with Chicken Recipe
Sea Bass Cuban Style Recipe
Skinny Turkey-Vegetable Soup Recipe
Vegetable Lasagna Recipe
Cilantro Lime Shrimp Recipe
Greek Sorghum Bowl with Artichokes and Olives

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Processed foods drive surge in obesity rates in Latin America and Caribbean – UN-backed report

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Obesity and overweight are on the rise throughout Latin America and the Caribbean, and are prevalent particularly among women and children, according to a new United Nations-backed report.

Nearly 360 million people, or 58 per cent of the inhabitants of the region, are overweight with the highest rates observed in the Bahamas at 69 per cent, Mexico at 64 per cent and Chile at 63 per cent, according to a news release on the Panorama of Food and Nutrition Security in Latin America and the Caribbean report, compiled by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO).

“The alarming rates of overweight and obesity in Latin America and the Caribbean should act as a wake-up call to governments in the region to introduce policies that address all forms of hunger and malnutrition and to do this by linking food security, sustainability, agriculture, nutrition and health,” said FAO Regional Representative Eve Crowley.

The report said that overweight affects more than half the population of all countries in the region, except for Haiti at 38.5 per cent, Paraguay at 48.5 per cent and Nicaragua at 49.4 per cent.

The report also noted obesity affects 140 million people, or 23 per cent of the region’s population, and that the highest rates are to be found in the Caribbean countries of Barbados at 36 per cent, and Trinidad and Tobago and Antigua and Barbuda at around 31 per cent each.

The increase in obesity has disproportionately impacted women: in more than 20 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, the rate of female obesity is 10 percentage points higher than that of men.

PAHO’s Director Carissa F. Etienne explained that: “the region faces a double burden of malnutrition. This needs to be tackled through balanced diets that include fresh, healthy, nutritious and sustainably produced food, as well as addressing the main social factors that determine malnutrition, such as lack of access to healthy food, water and sanitation, education and health services, and social protection programmes, among others.”

Linking agriculture, food, nutrition and health

The FAO/PAHO report points out that one of the main factors contributing to the rise of obesity and overweight has been the change in dietary patterns. Economic growth, increased urbanization, higher average incomes and the integration of the region into international markets have reduced the consumption of traditional preparations and increased consumption of ultra-processed products, a problem that has had greater impact on areas and countries that are net food importers.

To address this situation, FAO and PAHO call for the promotion of healthy and sustainable food systems that link agriculture, food, nutrition and health.

Source:

http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=56007#.WJi7R9IrInQ

How to Prevent Another Flint Water Crisis

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The Flint water crisis, resulting in potentially toxic levels of lead in the city’s water supply, shines a spotlight the devastating environment, health and safety ramifications of bad decision making — and also America’s aging infrastructure.

The American Society of Civil Engineers says America’s infrastructure will need an estimated $3.6 trillion in total investment by 2020, leaving a funding shortfall of $1.6 trillion. Replacing US water pipes alone would cost at least $1 trillion over the next 25 years, according to the American Water Works Association. AWWA says this figure does not include the cost of removing lead service lines on private property.

The country’s failing infrastructure has caused some to worry a similar water contamination crisis could happen elsewhere in the US. As Rohan Hepkins, the mayor of Yeadon, Pennsylvania, tells Slate: “I go through eastern Delaware County and I see many boroughs and townships going through the same infrastructural meltdown.” He says the city’s water and sewer infrastructure should have been replaced 20 years ago. “Most communities have waited until the end of the life cycles, and all of the bills are coming to roost at once.”

Like Flint, Yeadon, located just west of Philadelphia, is an economically depressed city. In Flint, state officials made a money-saving decision to switch its water supply to the Flint River, which contained high levels of lead and iron. It took the state and EPA officials months to admit there was a problem and take action.

Involve Professionals in Decision Making

“One important lesson to be learned from this is that important financial decisions cannot be made in a vacuum,” Lawrence (Larry) Clark, tells Environmental Leader. Clark is principal of Sustainable Performance Solutions LLC, a South Florida-based engineering firm focused on energy and sustainability consulting. “If all of the technical factors had been considered prior to the switch in water supplies being made, the outcome could have been very different.”

Clark, in an HPAC Engineering blog, writes about the Flint water crisis and Legionellosis, and says “I wonder how many of the individuals who made those bad decisions were professional engineers, licensed plumbers, or water-treatment specialists? The involvement of such professionals might have made a difference.” In an interview, Clark says professionals must be involved in the decision making process to prevent similar crises.

“Clearly, elected and appointed officials without the technical training/knowledge in those areas should consult with professionals before making these types of decisions,” he says. “After all of the negative press associated with Flint, I can’t imagine another jurisdiction making this kind of a change without consulting a variety of qualified professionals and relying on their expertise going forward.”

Calls for EPA Reform

EPA reform is needed to prevent another Flint water crisis, argues a Bloomberg View editorial. It says Flint and many other US cities including Philadelphia, Washington and Chicago use water-testing techniques that underestimate lead levels. Additionally, utilities sometimes concentrate sampling in neighborhoods known to have low lead levels or those without lead pipes.

“The EPA considers these techniques ‘against the intent of the monitoring protocol,’ but so far has failed to ban them,” according to the editorial, which says the agency is currently considering tightening the protocols for lead testing. “The rules should be stringent enough to ensure that all cities get an early warning when lead levels rise to the danger point,” it concludes.

The Washington Post says the EPA’s “lethargic response to the Flint water crisis makes the agency look like an accomplice after a crime — the poisoning of the city’s water system and assaulting its population.”

The Post quotes Jeff Ruch, executive director of Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER), who says EPA enforcement actions have fallen. It also cites an Environment & Energy Publishing report that shows, according to EPA data: “the 213 criminal cases EPA opened in 2015 were 87 fewer than two years before and down a fifth from 2014.”

Increase Lead Exposure Awareness

Lead testing firm Environmental Testing Services president and CEO Michael Stefkovic says ETS has seen an increase in awareness about the dangers of lead exposure from sources other than drinking water.

“The catastrophic lead contamination of the Flint, Michigan water supply in recent months has been a disaster for that city’s 99,000-plus residents,” Stefkovic told Environmental Leader. “If there is one good thing that might come out of this tragedy is that it has increased awareness of the danger of lead exposure. The same lead that is found in Flint’s drinking water also exists in hidden forms located in many homes.

“Too often the dangers of lead are down played through disclosure and release of liability. New renters and homebuyers are provided information concerning lead and its dangers without knowing if it actually exists. It is a common practice to ‘play dumb’ on behalf of landlords and home sellers in the housing industry relating to the presence of Lead. Renters and homebuyers normally sign releases accepting liability on lead present. Homes built prior to 1978 are assumed to have lead in certain painted surfaces. Unless testing is preformed the occupant will never know.”

Beware of Unintended Consequences

AWWA CEO David LaFrance agrees that Flint highlights the importance of communicating to the public about lead exposure risks. “Water utility customers should know how to determine if they have lead service lines, the benefits of removing lead service lines, and the steps to protect themselves and their families from lead exposure,” LaFrance says.

Another lesson learned from Flint: “water chemistry is complex,” he says. “When a community changes water sources or water treatment, unintended consequences can occur. Water systems must be alert to these potential issues and have plans in place to address them.”

Source:

https://www.environmentalleader.com/2016/02/how-to-prevent-another-flint-water-crisis/

Google in talks to help public healthcare projects in India

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The company is in talks with the state government to streamline public health programs. It plans to develop apps that will reduce the time taken in data collection by making it tech-enabled as opposed to tedious paperwork. It will also create a standardized platform under which all health data across programs can be tracked, maintained and easily shared. 

It is not clear at the moment whether Google will also retain the health data that is collected by its proposed platform or not.

“It is an early stage discussion and we do not have anything to comment or add at this stage,” a Google spokesperson told Mashable India.

Google reportedly came up with this proposal after conducting a study of accredited social health activists (ASHA) — also known as community health workers — in north Karnataka and some mid-level clinics in New Delhi. They realized that workers were losing a lot of time and resources in the collection and reporting. And every program ran a different software due to which cross-sharing of data was not possible. 

Google will be piloting the project in Karnataka’s Yadgir district which has a population of about 1.2 million. The state, meanwhile, has a population of 64 million with 2,310 primary health centers and 180 community health centers, according to the National Health Mission. 

The state government runs a variety of public health programs from health protection to families living below poverty line to health assurance schemes for those above poverty line and cashless treatment for all government employees. 

Google could even provide free Wi-Fi to the primary health centers on lines of what they are doing at railway stations across the country, the report suggests.

The Silicon Valley firm has shown keen interest in India in the last few years, with a slew of initiatives and programs targeted at startups and SMBs. 

Source:

http://mashable.com/2017/01/31/google-health-tracking-platform-karnataka-india/#ivaN4KWuB8qV

Beyond the gluten-free gimmick: How to actually lose weight

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Restaurants now offer special menu items of it and Whole Foods dedicates an entire aisle to it. We’ve heard it’s healthier, will make us thin, and give us more energy, too. We are going gluten-free!

A food or diet advertised as gluten-free typically gives the impression that it’s healthier, and great for weight loss. This is the gluten-free gimmick and if you haven’t fallen for it in the slightest bit once or twice, then good for you, because the food industry and media push this reputation pretty hard. The problem is, when some people try gluten-free diets, weight gain is actually the result.

Gluten-intolerant people can enjoy an abundance of health benefits when they go gluten-free. Avoiding gluten in cases of intolerance is linked to positive psychological and physical benefits.

For those who aren’t intolerant, however, following a gluten-free diet can mean an overload of refined carbohydrates, and as a result, sluggish energy and weight gain. After all, French fries, soda and lard are all gluten-free!

1) Run Away from the Gluten-Free Aisle

“Gluten-free” does not equal “healthy,” nor does it equal “healthy for weight loss.” Just because a product is gluten-free does NOT mean it is healthy.

When approaching a gluten-free diet, people often simply replace gluten-full foods like pasta and bread and replace them with their gluten-free counterpart products, like gluten-free pasta, gluten-free bread, pretzels, cake mix, cookies etc – the list goes on. Such products are typically marketed as “healthy.”

Avoid these foods. Gluten-free specialty products usually use corn or potato starch, instead of wheat, so they’re just as high in carbohydrates as their gluten-containing counterparts. Instead, use following a gluten-free diet as an opportunity to introduce more whole foods into your meals.

2) Find High Fiber Varieties of Gluten-Free Products

What does “gluten-free” usually equal? Fiber-free.  One major flaw of a gluten-free diet is the lack of fiber. Also, when the gluten is removed from products, fiber and B vitamins often go with it. Fiber helps keep us full, boost our metabolism, and control our blood sugar levels, all of which can aid in sustained energy and weight loss.

High fiber and minimally processed gluten-free products include those made with psyllium husk, flax seeds, and chia seeds. All of these are naturally gluten-free and an easy way to add fiber to your diet. Gluten-free specialty products made with these ingredients may also be a better choice than those made with brown rice flour. Check the labels to find the products with the most fiber.

3) Incorporate Non-Starchy Veggies

Instead of replacing gluten with other energy-dense foods, take the gluten-free diet as an opportunity to introduce more whole foods into your life. Next time you’re in the supermarket, spend more time in the produce aisle.

All non-starchy vegetables are naturally gluten-free, low calorie, and provide you with the fiber you’re missing from the omitted whole-grains. Some non-starchy vegetables include salad greens, artichokes, tomatoes, onions, beets, carrots and most green vegetables. At breakfast, add a mix of spinach, tomatoes, and onions to your egg scramble. At lunch, load your salad with artichokes, kale, peppers, tomatoes, hearts of palm, carrots, and beets.  And at dinner, swap pasta for zucchini noodles topped with tomato sauce and ground turkey.

4) Stick to a Serving

You can also replace bread, pasta, and oats with naturally gluten free starches like sweet potato, spaghetti squash, butternut squash, parsnips, quinoa and brown rice. However, these foods are a concentrated source of carbohydrates, so the amount you eat is important.

Restaurants typically serve up massive portions of grains because they are cheap to produce and expensive to sell. A quinoa bowl with 2 cups of quinoa and sweet potatoes is equivalent in carbohydrates to eight slices of white bread. Remember to stick to a serving of these starchy vegetables and gluten-free grains. A serving of quinoa and brown rice is 1/3 cup, and a serving of sweet potato 1/2 cup, and a serving of squash is a cup.

5) Replace Buckwheat with Baked Apples

Use your gluten elimination diet as an excuse to eat real foods by making it a baked good elimination diet too! Fruits are another naturally gluten-free food that can add fiber to your diet while satisfying your sweet tooth. Consider adding a cup of raspberries to breakfast to boost the fiber content by 8 grams, or dip strawberries in dark chocolate for a gluten-free dessert option. Other ideas include stuffing raspberries with dark chocolate chips, or making baked apples with cinnamon.

Source:

http://www.foxnews.com/health/2017/01/31/beyond-gluten-free-gimmick-how-to-actually-lose-weight.html

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