Miscarriage - pain relievers overdose linked
Beware the aspirin.
According to a Reuters report, Danish doctors have linked over-the-counter pain relievers to an increased risk of miscarriage. Researchers at Odder hospital, Denmark, found that women who took non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID) had more miscarriages than those who didn`t. NSAID medicines include aspirin and ibuprofen.
But Gunnar Lauge Nielson of the Odder hospital emphasised, in a study in the British Medical Journal, "Our observation of an increased risk of miscarriage in women exposed to NSAID, needs to be confirmed." The doctors studied 1,462 women who had used the drugs during pregnancy and more than 17,000 pregnant women who had not. They found "no significant association between take up prescriptions for NSAID during pregnancy and risk of congenital abnormality, low birth weight or pre-term birth. There was, however, a significant association with miscarriage".Liposuction improves cholesterol level
Suck out that fat.
Liposuction not only removes excess fat from the hips, abdomen, bottom and thighs, it can also help improve cholesterol levels.
New research shows that the surgery, in which fat is sucked out of the body through a tube by a vacuum-like machine, seems to have additional health benefits. "Liposuction usually is performed for cosmetic reasons but our data show...it can significantly change a person`s cholesterol level, which could benefit a person`s heart health," said Dr Fitz Hoppichler, of the University of Salzburg.
High cholesterol is a leading risk factor for heart disease, along with obesity, which is also linked to a range of other illnesses such as diabetes, stroke, joint problems and certain types of cancer. Hoppichler said liposuction was an option for people suffering from obesity but its effects on metabolism were still being studied.
Experts say the surgery should not be used as substitute for diet and exercise programmes to maintain normal body weight and keep fit.
Why meditation is good for you
Doing a world of good.
According to a recent study published in `Psychology Today,` meditation is the key to reducing anxiety and depression. The study states that mediating brings about dramatic effects in as little as a 10-minute session.
In several studies, subjects who mediated for even that short a time showed increased alpha waves (the `relaxed brain waves) and deceased anxiety and depression. A study at Harvard Medical School used MRI technology to map the brain of mediators, to explore what part of the brain meditation acts on. They found it activates the sections of the brain in charge of the autonomic nervous system. These are the functions in our bodies that we can`t control, such as digestion and blood pressure. They are also the functions that are often compromised by stress.
Jet lag shrinks woman`s brains more
And I`m leaving on a jet plane...
You`ve just staggered off a 12-hour flight. The clock says it`s dawn, but your body says it`s bedtime. You can`t remember what day it is nor do you really care.
The fuzzy, queasy sensation of jet lag has sometimes been likened to having your brain gently squeezed - and now, a researcher in Britain says that feeling has scientific backing.
Kwangwook Cho, of the University of Bristol Medical School, found that chronic jet lag appears to shrink the frontal part of the brain, inflicting temporary loss of memory and cognitive skills. He studied 20 women flight attendants aged between 22 and 28 who had worked for at least five years for an airline and routinely flew across at least seven time zones. Women were chosen for the test because they generally suffered worse jet lag than men.
Cho carried out a scan of each woman, using magnetic resonance imaging, which provides a 3-D image of the brain, and assessed their performance in tests. Among the women had a short turnaround in flights, an area of the brain called the right temporal lobe was "significantly smaller" than women who had the 14-day turnaround.
A doggy diagnostician
Canines sniff out disease
Some times, the family dog can do what sophisticated medical equipment cannot.
A recent study observed how a border collie sniffed out a cancerous mole on its owner`s leg. It constantly sniffed, licked and even tried to bite off the lesion. In India, researchers claim that dogs can be trained to smell cancers in people. Another story explains that up to one-third of dogs living with diabetics have the ability to sense when their owner`s blood sugar levels fall dangerously low if they`ve taken too much insulin. And some can be trained to detect impending seizures in epileptics, apparently by sensing minute physical changes that precede a seizure and warn their masters of an oncoming attack. Some doctors also described how family dogs were attuned to oncoming seizures.
Scientists have many theories to explain the behaviour, but they really can`t say how dogs detect such early signs of illness. Many illnesses induce chemical or hormonal changes, which have profound effects on the body. Dogs may pick up electrical disturbances in the brain, alterations in smell, muscle tremors, or behavioural changes in their owners. They have 200 million scent-receiving cells in their nose, which, if spread out, would cover an area greater than their body surface.
So watch out for your doggy diagnostician!Baby formula or breast milk?
On the ocassion of World Breast Feeding week, there has been an important breakthrough.
Every year, August 1- 7 is marked as World Breast feeding week. As the benefits of breast milk over bottled formula milk continues to be touted, new developments are taking place.
Now comes the news that some brands of infant formula should become more like breast milk as early as the year`s end.