Uttar Pradesh


Light to moderate rain hits eastern Uttar Pradesh

LUCKNOW: Light to moderate rains or thundershowers occurred at a few places over eastern Uttar Pradesh, while heavy rains occurred at isolated places in the past 24 hours in the state.  Balrampur and Iglas recorded 9 cm of rain, Bahraich 7 cm, Maharajganj 5 cm, Kakrahi, Bansi and Gorakhur 4 cm each, Fatehgarh, Regoli, Sidhauli, … Continue reading Light to moderate rain hits eastern Uttar Pradesh



Thinking about stardom is scary: Nawazuddin Siddiqui

New Delhi: His name adds credibility to the films he does and the actor has A-listers vying to work with him but Nawazuddin Siddiqui does not want to think about stardom as he fears it will corrupt his performances. Film after film, there has been a growth in Nawazuddin’s fan following so much so that … Continue reading Thinking about stardom is scary: Nawazuddin Siddiqui



Light to moderate rain hits eastern Uttar Pradesh

LUCKNOW: Light to moderate rains or thundershowers occurred at a few places over eastern Uttar Pradesh, while heavy rains occurred at isolated places in the past 24 hours in the state.  Balrampur and Iglas recorded 9 cm of rain, Bahraich 7 cm, Maharajganj 5 cm, Kakrahi, Bansi and Gorakhur 4 cm each, Fatehgarh, Regoli, Sidhauli, … Continue reading Light to moderate rain hits eastern Uttar Pradesh

Category: Health

Pizza, French fries and ice cream may be the kinds of foods many of us love to indulge in after a night of drinking. But research earlier this year suggests we can actually have benders on these foods all by themselves, and it may even be a sign of an addiction.

Researchers have wondered whether we can become addicted to food for more than a century. There have been reports of people losing control over how much they eat, and experiencing withdrawal when they are cut off, just like with drug and alcohol addiction. By now, many agree that food addiction can be a real problem for at least some types of foods.

For the first time, a team of researchers looked at exactly which types of foods could be the most addictive. They asked a group of 120 undergraduates at the University of Michigan, and another group of nearly 400 adults, about 35 different types of food — from pizza to broccoli — and whether they think they could have problems controlling how much they ate of each one. Eighteen of the items were processed foods, meaning they contained added sugars and fats.

Topping the list were pizza, chocolate, chips, cookies, ice cream, French fries, cake and soda, all considered processed foods. They were followed by cheese and bacon — both unprocessed foods, but high in fat and salt.

Step away from the burger: Why a ‘Western’ diet is bad for your health

Fruits and vegetables (strawberries, carrots and broccoli, for example) were at the bottom of the list.

“In a similar manner that drugs are processed to increase their addictive potential, this study provides insight that highly processed foods may be intentionally manufactured to be particularly rewarding through the addition of fat and refined carbohydrates, like white flour and sugar,” said Erica Schulte, graduate student of psychology at the University of Michigan and lead author of the study, which was published in February in PLOS One.

The researchers found that the most problematic foods tended to be those with a high glycemic load, meaning they contained a lot of sugar and caused a spike in blood sugar. The authors wrote that these qualities could make foods more difficult to stop eating in a similar way as drugs that are highly concentrated and rapidly absorbed into the body are more addictive.

The researchers also found that, among the adults in their study, those with a high BMI and those who were at risk of having any kind of food addiction were most likely to have difficulty controlling themselves around a particular food item.

The researchers assessed food addiction risk using the Yale Food Addiction Scale, which was developed by the study’s lead author, Ashley N. Gearhardt. (You can test your risk of having a food addiction by taking a short version of this survey.)

Although not all foods have the potential to be addictive, “it is critical to understand which ones do,” said Mike Robinson, assistant professor of psychology, neuroscience and behavior at Wesleyan University, who was not involved in the current study.

“We are all pressed for time, and food is becoming more and more available,” but we need to think about what we are grabbing on the go, Robinson said. Although a handful of almonds and a milkshake might have the same number of calories, they will have a different effects on your brain and your reward system, and you will be much more likely to go back to get more of the milkshake, he added.

Related: Americans are cutting calories, but far from eating healthy

Many of the symptoms of food addiction look like drug addiction, including that people need more and more of the food item to get the same effect. They also accept negative consequences to obtain it and feel the anxiety or agitation of withdrawal when they can’t have it. Although food withdrawal is not as intense as heroin withdrawal, neither is cocaine withdrawal. “It varies by the drug,” Robinson said.

Just like any addiction, the first step to recovery is to acknowledge there is a problem, Robinson said. “I think in the majority of cases when we have a problem with a substance, whether it’s a food or drug…we will ignore it,” he said.

Robinson suggests avoiding foods if you have trouble controlling how much of them you eat. “We are not in a situation where we will have dietary deficiencies (and) whenever possible we should be aiming to cook foods for ourselves,” he said.(Courtesy: CNN)

An Indian-origin researcher in the US is leading trials on an experimental “Frankenstein” technology that may be able to repair scarred heart tissue and stop – or even reverse – heart failure.

Amit Patel at University Hospital in Salt Lake City and other researchers have been trying to figure out how to regenerate dead heart muscle in patients who have had massive heart attacks.

Patel is now leading Phase 1 FDA clinical trial of a new procedure.The technology includes mixing the “extracellular matrix” powder – a mixture of proteins and molecules isolated from heart muscle – with saline or water. The mixture is then injected into the patient’s dead heart muscle via catheter.

The researchers then wait three to six months to see if the patient’s heart muscle regenerates, ‘Deseret News’ reported.

Though it may sound like something out of “Frankenstein,” Tim Henry, the director of cardiology at the Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute said the technology – inspired by stem cell research – is “within our reach.”

Patel added that endocardial matrix therapy would likely be cheaper than either stem cells or gene therapy because it’s an off-the-shelf product that can be widely produced and delivered in an easy clinical procedure.

To carry out the procedure, Patel recruited a Utah woman who had a heart attack six months ago that reduced her overall heart blood pumping ability from 60 per cent – which is considered normal – to less than 45 per cent.

Patel’s team made a virtual of the inside of the patient’s heart to figure out where her dead heart muscle was located, marked 18 injection sites, then used a catheter to inject the matrix into her heart. The procedure took less than two hours.
“This first patient was able to be done awake and safe and she’s already back to work. She went home the next day,” Patel said. Eighteen patients will eventually undergo the experimental procedure.

Doctors at Minneapolis Heart Institute in Minnesota, the only other site approved to test the new technology, performed the procedure on a second patient last week. The patients will be examined three and six months out for evidence of muscle regrowth and revived heart function. If everything goes well, Patel estimates the technology could become approved for clinical use within five to seven years

New York : The number of hepatitis C patients suffering from advanced liver damage may be grossly underestimated and underdiagnosed, according to a new study.

Hepatitis C is a viral infection that causes inflammation and infection of the liver.

The findings, result of a study of nearly 10,000 patients suffering from hepatitis C, can have a significant effect on patient care and healthcare policy regarding the chronic disease.

“Knowledge of the prevalence of liver damage will help decision making regarding screening for the effects of hepatitis C, when to start anti-viral therapy and the need for follow-up counseling,” explained Stuart Gordon, lead researcher and director of Hepatology at Henry Ford Hospital.

The research was led by researchers at Henry Ford Health System and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The results suggest cirrhosis may be underdiagnosed in a large segment of the population.

“Our results suggest a fourfold higher prevalence of cirrhosis than is indicated by biopsy alone,” Gordon added.

The researchers discovered highly likely signs of liver damage by calculating the patients’ liver enzymes, platelet counts and age in a previously validated test called a FIB-4 score.

A lot of patients in the study had cirrhosis and probably didn’t know they had cirrhosis.

“Sometimes the clues of liver damage or cirrhosis are very subtle – a dropping platelet count, a spleen size that is slightly increased on an ultrasound,” Gordon noted.

It is not unusual for patients with hepatitis C to come in and they have liver cancer, and they didn’t even know that they had cirrhosis that led to their cancer.

The results could have wide impact on the treatment of those with hepatitis C, a disease now curable in many cases with oral antivirals.

“People with hepatitis C need to find out the severity of their underlying liver disease, because they may not realise that they have cirrhosis,” the authors noted.

At the mention of peppermint, candy canes and ice cream comes to mind. But did you know that peppermint is also an age-old herbal medicine that has been used to treat a wide range of abdominal woes? The oil extracted from the peppermint plant contains a host of compounds, but the most abundant and perhaps the most pharmacologically important is menthol.

Studies have shown peppermint oil to be fairly effective at relieving irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), a collection of symptoms that includes abdominal pain and cramping, bloating, constipation and diarrhea that affects 5 to 20 percent of the population. One explanation is that the oil—especially the menthol—blocks calcium channels, which has the effect of relaxing the “smooth” muscles in the walls of the intestines. Recently, Alex Ford, a McMaster University researcher, concluded that instead of popular over-the counter drugs, peppermint oil should be the first line of defense against IBS.

Peppermint can temporarily allay itching caused by insect bites, eczema and other lesions, including the rash of poison ivy. Peppermint tea can be used as a mouthwash for babies with thrush (yeast in the mouth) or for reducing nausea and vomiting during pregnancy, especially for women who want to avoid stronger medications.

Regarding the action plan for distribution of free medicines, as public health is a state subject, it is primarily for the states/UTs to draw up such action plans as per their need. However, under the National Health Mission (NHM), financial and technical support is being provided to the states/UTs for strengthening their healthcare delivery system including support for provision of free drugs to those who access public health facilities based on the requirement posed by the states/UTs in their Programme Implementation Plans. An incentive of up to 5% additional funding (over and above the normal allocation of the state) under the NHM is provided to those states that introduce free medicines scheme. Under the NHM-Free Drug Service Initiative substantial funding is available to states for provision of free drugs subject to states/UTs meeting certain specified conditions. Detailed operational guidelines for NHM-Free Drugs Service Initiative have also been released to the states on 2nd July, 2015.

The number of free drugs provided by the states varies from state to state and most states have their own list of essential medicines to be provided free in public facilities. As such, support is available to the states/UTs if they decide to provide free essential medicines as per the national list.

The steps taken by the Government to check spurious/sub-standard drugs in the country include:

  • Under Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940 and Rules made there under, the regulatory control over the drugs imported in to the country is exercised by the Central Government through the Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO).
  • The manufacture, sale and distribution of drugs are regulated under the said Act & Rules by the State Drugs Control Authorities appointed by the State Governments.
  • The regulatory control over the manufacture and sale of the drugs is exercised through a system of licensing and inspection.
  • The manufacturer is required to comply with the requirements of Good Manufacturing Practices specified under Schedule M of the Drugs and Cosmetics Rules and conditions of the licence so as to ensure that the drugs manufacturers in the country conform to the standards prescribed for them.

Further, the Government has taken following steps to check the menace of spurious/sub-standard drugs:

  1. The Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940 was amended under Drugs & Cosmetics (Amendment) Act 2008. Stringent penalties for manufacture of spurious and adulterated drugs have been provided. Certain offences have also been made cognizable and non-bailable.
  2. The States / UTs have been requested to set up special Courts for trial of offences under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act for speedy disposal. 25 States have already set up designated special Courts for trial of cases related to spurious and sub-standard drugs.
  3. A Whistleblower scheme has been announced by the Government of India to encourage vigilant public participation in the detection of movement of spurious drugs in the country. The scheme provides for suitably rewarding the informers for providing concrete information to the regulatory authorities in respect of movement of spurious drugs. The details of policy are available at the website of CDSCO (www.cdsco.nic.in).
  4. Guidelines for taking action on samples of drugs declared spurious or not of standard quality in the light of enhanced penalties under the Drugs & Cosmetics (Amendment) Act, 2008 were forwarded to the State Drugs, Controllers for uniform implementation.
  5. The Government has decided to strengthen both the Central and States’ drug regulatory system during the 12th Five Year Plan enabling them to keep more effective watch on these unscrupulous elements indulging in unlawful activities.
  6. The number of sanctioned posts in Central Drugs Standard Control Organization (CDSCO) has been increased from 111(as on April, 2008) to 474(as on Feb, 2015).
  7. Provision of quality assurance for the drugs provided in public health facilities under the NHM.

The Health Minister, Shri J P Nadda stated this in a written reply in the Rajya Sabha here today.

Kolkata: Physicians and healthcare workers can now literally see what your lungs are saying, thanks to Indian scientists who have designed a new technology that allows lung disorders to be easily spotted through images of digitally-processed lung sounds.
The non-invasive process, almost like an enhanced and digital version of a stethoscope, allows screening and detection of lung disorders with precision in a short time.
Developed by researchers of the Indian Institute of Technology-Kharagpur in collaboration with the Institute of Pulmocare and Research, Kolkata (IPCR), the embedded system maps closeness to a disease.
The researchers envisage that in remote settings, the images can be relayed via mobile phones to a healthcare facility for analysis of the visual data.
“The target was to identify certain patterns in the lung sound which carry distinguishing signatures of normality and abnormality and present in a visual form for easy identification,” said pulmonologist P.S. Bhattacharyya of IPCR here on Thursday.
Its USP lies in the fact that it can collect breathing sounds and successfully filter out heart rhythms from lung sounds to zoom in on the disease.
The research spanning five years was the focus of an editorial in the medical journal “Respirology” titled “Seeing What We Hear: An Eye To Help the Ear” in May.
Signal processing expert Goutam Saha, who helped create the mapping algorithm to convert digitally-processed lung sounds into pictures that highlight abnormalities, said the technology is simple enough even for a layman to use.