The Telangana Science Journal

Health and Nutrition

(An International Electronic Science Digest Published from the United States of America)
(Click here to subscribe to this free e-journal)
(Dedicated to one of the most backward regions in India, "Telangana," )

Chief Editor: Dr. Sreenivasarao Vepachedu


Issue 95

5107 Kali Era , paardhiva Year, Kartika month
2063 Vikramarka Era, paardhiva Year,   Kartika month
1927 Salivahana Era
paardhiva Year,   Kartika month
 2005 AD, November


Diet and Exercise
Financial Health
Diet and Exercise - Brain and Heart!
Waist to Hip Ratio
Walking v. Jogging
Window of Opportunity
Soy Reduces Cholesterol
Breast Feeding
Fruits and Vegetables Confer Health

Shortness of Breath
Violence against Women
Tvorog Idli

Chickpea and vegetable salad
Documents You Must Have

Diet and Exercise
Diet and Exercise - Brain and Heart!
As ancient Indians discovered more than 5000 years ago and documented in Ayurveda, we are now finding that diet and lifestyle measures can have profound effects on the brain. A daily run, a diet rich in almonds and other healthful foods and a stimulating  environment -- all may keep aging brain cells in shape, according to new research at the University of Illinois-Chicago.  Animals eating an  almond-rich diet did much better than those fed the usual chow. Previous studies have also suggested that a low-fat diet and/or a diet rich in certain foods containing omega-fats might help keep the brain healthy. 

People who exercise can add three years to their life, and their hearts reap benefits from something as simple as brisk
walking a half-hour a day, two studies suggest in Archives of Internal Medicine.  In another study, conducted at the Mayo
Clinic, it was shown that physicians were more likely to develop Parkinson's disease than manual workers.  The findings
suggest a link between occupation and the risk of Parkinson's. The researchers examined the medical records of everyone
 in Olmsted County, Minnesota, who developed Parkinson's from 1976 to 1995, where the research was based. The
scientists found that people in active, manual jobs such as construction and factory workers had the lowest risk. No clear
explanation for the trend has yet been found.  Physical activity and/or socio-economic status may be involved.

Waist to Hip Ratio
Researchers reported in The Lancet medical journal that a hip-to-waist ratio is a better predictor of the risk
 of heart attack for a variety of ethnic groups.  The current standard is the body-mass index, which fails to take into account
the location of the fat accumulation and muscular mass.  A previous study has shown that potbelly is a better predictor of heart disease.

Average waist measurements recorded by the researchers were about 90 percent of the hip measurements. People in China
scored best at 88 percent, followed by 89 percent in the Indian continent (southeast Asia), 90 percent in North America, 92
 percent in Africa, 93 percent in the Middle East and 94 percent in South America.  A 30-inch waist and 36-inch hips, for
instance, works out to a favorable 83 percent.

Some 1 million adult New Yorkers are obese, but nearly two thirds of them don't think they are, according to a study released by the city's Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. Gaining weight from overeating is a problem faced by many adults, and  now scientists have apparently discovered one reason why.  In experiments with rats, researchers found that the hormone leptin, which helps burn fat in fat cells called adipocytes, becomes ineffective, allowing for weight gain from overeating.

Overweight children aren't just at risk of health problems in adulthood. They may already be suffering the effects of excess weight on their bones and joints. A study presented at the Obesity Society meeting in Vancouver, British Columbia, finds that overweight children have more bone fractures and joint problems than normal-weight kids.

Walking v. Jogging
Just going for a brisk walk in the park, around the block or on a treadmill may be enough to help keep your heart healthy,
suggests a study, which indicates roughly two to three hours of mild exercise a week at a moderate intensity can significantly
cut the risk of cardiovascular disease, supports earlier research.  The research was published in the October issue of the
journal Chest.

Window of Opportunity
Unlike other tissues in the body, breast tissue in babies and young girls has only one duct. Hormones secreted during puberty cause this duct to grow rapidly into a tree-like structure with more ducts. Carcinogens bind more readily to DNA in the immature cells that develop while this duct expands. These cells also appear less efficient at repairing damage to genes that these carcinogens may cause. After a woman's first full-term pregnancy, breast cells reach maturity and are much less sensitive to DNA damage. Research now suggests that adolescence may offer a unique window of opportunity for substantially lowering the risk of breast cancer later in life. Genistein, a phytochemical in soy, may promote the development of immature breast cells into more mature cells less vulnerable to carcinogens, according to studies presented at the most recent American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) international conference on diet and cancer. The benefits were even greater when they continued to eat soy into adulthood. The evidence suggests that the time around puberty offers a chance to imprint cells with a "blueprint" that creates cellular pathways for long-term protection. Soy consumption as adults had no effect on the women's breast cancer risk in this study. In another study, Asian-American women who ate soy even once a week during adolescence reduced their risk of breast cancer later. In this study, regular consumption of soy foods during adolescence lowered their breast cancer risk even if they did not eat it regularly later in life.  But the women who continued eating soy as adults had the lowest risk.

Omega-3 fat, found in flax, urad and nuts, may also offer more protection against breast cancer when consumed before or
around puberty rather than in adulthood. Several studies have linked omega-3 fat consumption with a lower risk of breast
cancer, especially if teenagers eat low amounts of other polyunsaturated fats.

Adding breast cancer to the list of health causes he champions, former President Bill Clinton is establishing a fund in honor of his mother Virginia Clinton Kelley, who died of the disease in 1994.  Shortly after leaving office in 2001, Bill got the
William J. Clinton Foundation involved in fighting AIDS and brokered agreements that led to cheaper drugs for Africa and other poor nations.  His foundation has set a goal to supply AIDS drugs to 10,000 children in at least 10 countries by the end of the year, and to provide reduced-cost HIV drugs to 2 million people by 2008. The newly formed Virginia Clinton Kelley Fund will be part of the National Breast Cancer Coalition Fund. Mrs. Kelley underwent standard mastectomy, chemotherapy and radiation treatments in 1990 and died four years later, at age 70.

Breast Feeding
Breast feeding is saving the lives of 6 million babies a year, but more than twice that could be saved if more mothers would use the time-honored method, the U.N. children's agency said in November.  Thirty-nine percent of infants in developing countries are exclusively breast fed, UNICEF said, blaming "lack of awareness amongst mothers, and lack of support from health workers and communities."  A total of 1.3 million lives could be saved each year if mothers followed its recommendation of exclusive breast feeding up until six months, then complementary feeding for at least two years, UNICEF said in a statement. UNICEF said breast milk gives a baby ideal nourishment and disease immunity.

Researchers have found one more reason why. A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association finds that women who breastfeed lower their risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

Soy Reduces Cholesterol
Two servings a day of soy protein -- such as that found in tofu, soy milk or soy powder -- can lower cholesterol levels by as much as 9 percent as long as the raw soy is uncooked, a study presented on soy protein's impact on blood cholesterol to a
scientific conference on soy held in Chicago.  The health benefit also is found in such products as soy nuts, soy powder
sprinkled on food or in milkshakes, or edamame, a raw or parboiled edible form of soybeans popular in Japan.

Fruits and Vegetables Confer Health
There are as many as 2,000 known phytonutrients. Just one serving of vegetable or fruit may possess more than 100 different types. Cruciferous vegetables such as Broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, bok choy, dark leafy greens, watercress etc. contain phytonutrients that may prevent cancer and interfere with the growth of cancer cells.

A study, which focused on chemical interactions between compounds found in foods and the body's cells and DNA, suggests that the addition of these foods to the diet can confer health benefits. Broccoli sprouts, cabbage, ginkgo biloba and garlic appear to have a role in preventing a variety of cancers.  The findings were presented at the American Association for Cancer Research's meeting in Baltimore in November.

Eating fruits and vegetables has been shown to lower cholesterol and blood pressure, improve bowel regularity and colon
health, aid in weight and blood sugar control, reduce the risk of developing cataracts and macular degeneration leading to
vision loss, and guard against certain cancers, with the strongest evidence related to cancers of the lung and digestive tract.

Despite the resounding benefits of consuming plant foods, Americans eat only about 1.5 servings of vegetables and less
than 1 serving of fruit per day, on average.  According to a 2002 national survey, Americans spent $18.7 billion per year on
dietary supplements such as antioxidants despite inconclusive scientific backup for their effectiveness in disease prevention and treatment.  We need to retrain our thinking to create a meal around vegetables and fruits. In addition to the crucifers mentioned above, flavonoid containing berries, cherries, red and purple grapes, currants, pomegranates, walnuts, apples with skin, citrus, red onions, tomatoes, bell peppers, grape juice, etc. are associated with decreased risk of diabetes, heart disease and cancer.

Red, green, yellow and orange vegetables and fruits, such as pumpkin, carrots, sweet potato, squash, broccoli, dark leafy
greens, tomatoes, corn, peppers, mango, guava, apricots, peaches, cantaloupe, watermelon, red grapefruit, oranges,
tangerines etc. contain carotenoids which have been linked with prevention of colon, prostate, breast and lung cancer.

Shortness of Breath
In the next one to five years, those with shortness of breath and no history of heart disease had four times the risk of death from heart problems than those without any symptoms (2 percent versus 0.5 percent per year) and twice the risk of those with typical chest pain (2 percent versus 1 percent), according to the findings were reported in the November issue of New England Journal of Medicine. Breathing problems have a number of causes, including lung diseases and heart damage or just being out of shape.  Thus, shortness of breath is not a sign to be ignored. So, make sure that your doctor knows about your symptoms.

Violence against Women
In interviews with 24,000 women in 10 countries, researchers found that while there are wide variations in the rate of women experiencing sexual or other physical abuse at the hands of their partners, victims are about twice as likely as other women to suffer ill health and the effect to persists long after the violence has stopped.  Women who are physically abused by a partner face a similar legacy of health problems whether they live in a modern city in the industrialized world or a traditional village in a developing country.  The landmark study was conducted by the World Health Organization in collaboration with the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, and PATH, a global health organization. Countries included in the study were: Brazil, Ethiopia, Japan, Namibia, Peru, Samoa, Serbia and Montenegro, Thailand, Bangladesh and Tanzania.  North America and Western Europe were not included because earlier studies had already examined the situation there. The percentage of women who had been attacked by their partners in the preceding year was 4 percent in Japan and in Serbia and Montenegro, compared with between 30 percent and 54 percent in Bangladesh, Ethiopia, Peru and Tanzania. In rural Ethiopia, where two-thirds of women experience domestic violence, the impact on health was very similar to that seen in Britain, where 4 percent of women are experiencing violence.

If you're a victim of violence at the hands of someone you know or love or you are recovering from an assault by a stranger, you are not alone. In the USA, to get immediate help and support call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) or the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-4673.


Tvorog Idli
Ingredients: 1/2 cup urad flour, 1/2 cup Idli flour or rice flour, 1/2 cup tvorog (cottage cheese or farmers cheese), 2 cups kifir (yoghurt), salt to taste and a pinch of baking soda. (Optionally, 1/2 cup finely grated carrots).
Directions:  Mix thoroughly and let stand for 10 minutes. Place the dough in an idli cooker with sufficient water and cook for about 15 minutes.

Chickpea and vegetable salad
Ingredients: 4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, 2 teaspoon red wine vinegar, 1 teaspoon Asian chili sauce, 1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 small red onion, very thinly sliced, 12 spears asparagus, trimmed, trimmed, steamed, and cut crosswise into thirds
1 (15 1/2 - ounce) can chickpeas, rinsed and drained, 1 red pepper, cut into 1-inch squares.

Directions: Combine dressing ingredients in a medium bowl. Let stand 5 minutes. Add remaining ingredients and toss well to coat. Serve at room temperature.

Your Financial Health
Documents You Must Have

This material contains only general descriptions and is not a solicitation to sell any insurance product or security, nor is it intended as any financial or tax advice. For information about specific insurance needs or situations, contact your financial agent.
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Source: The primary sources cited above,  New York Times (NYT), Washington Post (WP), Mercury News,, Chicago Tribune, USA Today, Intellihealthnews, Deccan Chronicle (DC), the Hindu, Hindustan Times, Times of India, AP, Reuters, AFP, etc.

Copyright ©1998-2005
Vepachedu Educational Foundation, Inc
Copyright Vepachedu Educational Foundation Inc., 2004.  All rights reserved.  All information is intended for your general knowledge only and is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment for special medical conditions or any specific health issues or starting a new fitness regimen. Please read disclaimer.

Om! Asatoma Sadgamaya, Tamasoma Jyotirgamaya, Mrityorma Amritamgamaya, Om Shantih, Shantih, Shantih!
(Om! Lead the world from wrong path to the right path, from ignorance to knowledge, from mortality to immortality and peace!)
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