Tag Archives: Health

AMERICAN DIET: THE COVID SURGE IN SNACKING (VIDEO)

With Americans stuck at home, snack food has become a valuable commodity for the pandemic stressed consumer. North American sales of savory snacks like chips, popcorn, and pretzels climbed to $56.9 billion in 2020. In stressful times, people turn to snacking for comfort and Covid-19 has transformed kitchens across the U.S. into giant vending machines. So, has Covid-19 put an end to the shift to healthier snacks?

DR. C’S COMMENTS:

Snacking with its  concomitant weight gain has increased with Covid. Of course Snacking didn’t originate with Covid, and it has long been common in Overweight people.  Snacks are engineered to taste terrific, which means containing a lot of fat, sugar, and salt, easily be over done. Good nutrition  is an afterthought to snack companies.

The Small volume of snacks, eaten frequently, Does not cause the satiation that comes with regular meals.

In my opinion, one of the major mechanisms by which TIME RESTRICTED EATING causes weight loss is by its prohibition of snacks. In the narrow window of time that you’re allowed to eat, you are hungry and eat regular food which tends to be of higher quality. Your stomach is full. You feel full and are not tempted to snack. Sugary drinks and snacks are bad for health.

HEALTH: ‘GUT MICROBIOMES – ENABLER OF LONGER LIVES’

Microbiomes are complex microbial ecosystems, and amongst those found in and on human body, gut microbiome is the most complex. It performs important functions, and is increasingly recognized as a key element influencing long-life health. Specific nutritional components, such as prebiotics and probiotics, can be used to shape healthy gut microbiome. Nestlé Research has made significant contributions in this field for over 30 years.

MEDICINE: ADEQUATE SLEEP & CARDIOVASCULAR HEALTH

Mayo Clinic Division of Preventive Cardiology will be preparing a series of recordings focusing on Cardiovascular Disease states. This is the Sleep Series and this particular one focuses on what is adequate sleep and does it benefit Cardiovascular Health.

HEALTHY LIVES: LIVING IN SYCH WITH BIOLOGICAL CLOCKS (SALK INSTITUTE)

Satchin Panda is a professor in Salk’s Regulatory Biology Laboratory. He explores the genes, molecules and cells that keep the whole body on the same biological clock, also known as a circadian rhythm. On this episode of Where Cures Begin, Panda talks about what a biological clock is, how living in sync with your clock can improve your health, and how growing up in India informed his research.

HEALTH: ‘WHAT INFLUENCES GUT MICROBIOME’ (VIDEO)

The microbiota is a dynamic community that evolves through the lifetime of an individual, being influenced by multiple factors. Nutrition is essential in the process of establishing a healthy gut microbiome, with a key role of breastfeeding in early months, and important role of diverse diet to stimulate maturation of diverse gut microbiome.

Prebiotics, probiotics and synbiotics are key tools to boost the development of an age-appropriate microbiota and its related benefits, like healthy immune development and a basis for a resilient microbiota throughout life.

COVID-19: ‘INTRANASAL VACCINES’ MIGHT BE MORE EFFECTIVE THAN NEEDLES

From Scientific American (March 1, 2021):

Enter the intranasal vaccine, which abandons the needle and syringe for a spray container that looks more like a nasal decongestant. With a quick spritz up the nose, intranasal vaccines are designed to bolster immune defenses in the mucosa, triggering production of an antibody known as immunoglobulin A, which can block infection. This overwhelming response, called sterilizing immunity, reduces the chance that people will pass on the virus.

The development of highly effective COVID vaccines in less than a year is an extraordinary triumph of science. But several coronavirus variants have emerged that could at least partly evade the immune response induced by the vaccines. These variants should serve as a warning against complacency—and encourage us to explore a different type of vaccination, delivered as a spray in the nose. Intranasal vaccines could provide an additional degree of protection, and help reduce the spread of the virus.

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MEDICINE: ‘NON-SURGICAL TREATMENT OF KIDNEY STONES’ (CLEVELAND CLINIC)

Observation is a non-surgical approach in which we allow the stone to pass on its own. The smaller the stone, the better the chance that it will pass. The benefit of observation is that you avoid having surgery.

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ANALYSIS: MULTIRESISTANT BACTERIA THAT OUTSMART ANTIBIOTICS (VIDEO)

Antimicrobial resistance is one of the greatest medical challenges of our time. Among the causes are industrial livestock farming, poor hygiene in hospitals, and the misuse of antibiotics. This documentary looks at approaches to fighting multiresistant strains of bacteria.

Each year 33,000 people in Europe die after becoming infected with bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics. Hygiene specialist Dr. Ron Hendrix has been working for years to prevent outbreaks of infectious disease in hospitals. Dr. Hendrix says that he and other experts in the Netherlands recognized early on that they’d have to fight the spread of bacteria just as actively as they would the actual infection.

Hendrix has convinced a number of German hospitals to re-open their diagnostic laboratories, as well. In the early 2000s, many of these labs had been shut down as a cost-cutting measure. And farmers in Denmark voluntarily chose to sharply reduce their use of antibiotics, after evidence showed that intensive livestock farming caused multiresistant bacteria to multiply.

Infectious disease specialist Dr. Patrick Soentjens was able to convince Belgium’s health ministry to allow the use of “phages” to treat stubborn antimicrobial resistant pathogens. Phages are special viruses that kill bacteria. Dr. Soentjens is certain that this well-known, but largely forgotten option could save many lives. Belgium has become the first western European country where phages have been officially recognized as a legitimate medical treatment.

DIGITAL HEALTH: THE FUTURE OF WEARABLE DEVICES

Currently, smartwatches provide information such as heart rate, sleep time and activity patterns. In the future, this could be augmented with new classes of wearable devices that monitor, for example, concentrations of cortisol for tracking stress (using electronic epidermal tattoos), biomarkers of inflammation and levels of blood O2 (microneedle patches), skin temperature (electronic textiles), blood pressure (smart rings), concentration of ions (wristbands), intraocular pressure (smart contact lenses), the presence of airborne pathogens and breathing anomalies (face masks), and the concentration of therapeutic drugs (on-teeth sensors)2,10,12,13,14,15,16. Such emerging low-cost wearable sensing technologies, monitoring both physical parameters and biochemical markers, could be used to identify symptomatic and pre-symptomatic cases in future pandemics. The devices could also be used to remotely monitor the recovery of individuals undergoing treatment or self-isolating at home.

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