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Ways to Soothe a Sore Throat

A sore throat can be the first sign of a cold, a side effect of strained vocal cords, or an indication of something more serious (like strep throat).

Regardless of the cause, your immediate concern when soreness strikes is how to get relief, fast. You may be tempted to run to your doctor, but some of the best treatments are home remedies and over-the-counter meds, says Jeffrey Linder, M.D., an internist at Brigham and Women's Hospital, in Boston.

Here are Ways to try the next time you're feeling scratchy, hoarse, or just plain sick.

Anti-inflammatories

One of the most effective treatments for sore throat is probably already in your medicine cabinet: an over-the-counter, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) such as Advil or Aleve.

"These medicines are combination pain relievers and anti-inflammatories, so they'll make you feel better and they'll also reduce some of the swelling associated with a sore throat," Dr. Linder says. "If you have a fever that's also contributing to your symptoms, they can help reduce that as well."

Saltwater gargle

Several studies have found that gargling several times a day with warm salt water can reduce swelling in the throat and loosen mucus, helping to flush out irritants or bacteria.

Doctors generally recommend dissolving half a teaspoon of salt in one cup of water. If the salty taste is too unpleasant for you, try adding a small amount of honey to sweeten the mixture slightly. (Just remember to spit the water out after gargling, rather than swallowing!)

Lozenges and sprays

Sucking on cough drops stimulates saliva production, which can help keep your throat moist. But many varieties are no more effective than hard candies, Dr. Linder says. For an added benefit, choose brands with a cooling or numbing ingredient, like menthol or eucalyptus.

Over-the-counter sprays like Chloraseptic produce an effect similar to cooling lozenges. They won't cure your sore throat or help you fight off the underlying cold, but they may help dull the pain temporarily. Chloraseptic's active ingredient, phenol, is a local antiseptic that also has antibacterial properties, Dr. Linder says.

Chicken soup

An age-old home remedy for colds, chicken soup can help soothe a sore throat, as well. "The sodium in the broth may actually have anti-inflammatory properties, and it can feel good going down," Dr. Linder says.

Soup has an added benefit when you're sick: Eating can be painful and difficult with a swollen or very sore throat, so sipping some liquid nourishment will ensure that you're getting the nutrients you need to fight off your infection.

Rest

It may not be the quickest solution, but getting some rest is probably the best thing you can do to battle the infection that caused your sore throat in the first place, Dr. Linder says.

"The vast majority of sore throats are caused by cold viruses, and we know that there's very little we can do to cure a cold once we've got it," he says. "Making sure your body is well rested will at least help it fight off the virus so you can get better sooner."

Source: Health.com

R.Sawas

Researchers explode the myth about running injuries

If you are healthy and plan to start running for the first time, it is perfectly all right to put on a pair of completely ordinary 'neutral' running shoes without any special support. Even though your feet over pronate when you run -- i.e. roll inwards. There appears to be no risk that over pronation or under pronation can lead to running injuries through using neutral shoes for this special group of healthy beginners.

This is the result of a study conducted at Aarhus University which has just been published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine under the title "Foot pronation is not associated with increased injury risk in novice runners wearing a neutral shoe."

Healthy runners monitored for 12 months

Researchers have followed 927 healthy novice runners with different pronation types for a full year. All study participants received the same model of neutral running shoe, regardless of whether they had neutral foot pronation or not. During the study period, 252 people suffered an injury, and the runners ran a total of 163,401 km.

"We have now compared runners with neutral foot pronation with the runners who pronate to varying degrees, and our findings suggest that over pronating runners do not have a higher risk of injury than anyone else," says physiotherapist and PhD student Rasmus Ø. Nielsen from Aarhus University, who has conducted the study together with a team of researchers from Aarhus University, Aarhus University Hospital, Aalborg University Hospital and the Netherlands.

"This is a controversial finding as it has been assumed for many years that it is injurious to run in shoes without the necessary support if you over/under pronate," he says. Rasmus Ø. Nielsen emphasizes that the study has not looked at what happens when you run in a pair of non-neutral shoes, and what runners should consider with respect to pronation and choice of shoe once they have already suffered a running injury.

Focus on other risk factors

The researchers are now predicting that in future we will stop regarding foot pronation as a major risk factor in connection with running injuries among healthy novice runners.

Instead, they suggest that beginners should consider other factors such as overweight, training volume and old injuries to avoid running injuries.

"However, we still need to research the extent to which feet with extreme pronation are subject to a greater risk of running injury than feet with normal pronation," says Rasmus Ø. Nielsen.

Three key results

In the British Journal of Sports Medicine, the researchers point to three key results: The study contradicts the current assumption that over/under pronation in the foot leads to an increased risk of running injury if you run in a neutral pair of running shoes. The study shows that the risk of injury was the same for runners after the first 250 km, irrespective of their pronation type. The study shows that the number of injuries per 1,000 km of running was significantly lower among runners who over/under pronate than among those with neutral foot pronation.

Source: science news

B.N

Babies practice Crying in the Womb, Durham Researchers claim

 

 

 

Unborn babies "practice" facial expressions of pain, researchers from Durham and Lancaster universities say.

They believe the foetus is "learning" how to communicate after birth, through crying or grimacing in the womb.

A study of ultrasound scans suggests movements develop during pregnancy, from simple smiling to more complex eyebrow lowering and nose wrinkling.

Lead researcher Dr Nadja Reissland said understanding "normal development" could help doctors identify problems.

"It is not yet clear whether foetuses can actually feel pain, nor do we know whether facial expressions relate to how they feel," she said.

The research indicated facial movements were linked to brain maturity rather than actual feelings, she added.

The study looked at video footage of 4D scans of eight female and seven male fetuses.

It follows previous research suggesting facial expressions of healthy foetuses develop and become more complex during pregnancy.

Dr Reissland, a senior lecturer at Durham University, said: "It is vital for infants to be able to show pain as soon as they are born so that they can communicate any distress or pain they might feel to their carers".

Source : BBC

N.H.Khider

 

 

 

Naturally Cooling Foods for Summer

As the weather changes, getting set for spring and summer, our diets begin to lighten up and we enjoy the yummy bounty of the season. We begin to crave foods that keep us cool.

Ayurveda is a science that focuses on balancing the body's life energies (vata, pitta, and kapha) rather than focusing on individual symptoms. In Ayurveda, warm weather can also be dominated by a pitta imbalance which can cause excessive body heat along with irritability, anger, hatred, judgment, criticism, and jealousy. Those who feel these emotions coming on should consider balancing them with these cooling foods.

Coconut oil

In the summer, coconut oil is a great choice because of its pitta-reducing qualities. It's the most preferable fat source during warm weather. Coconut oil is also known to boost thyroid health, increase metabolism, support immune health, and it’s good for your skin.

Watermelon

Melons of all varieties will keep you cool, as long as they're ripe. Stay away from sour fruits. What says summer more than a juicy watermelon?

The amino acid found in watermelon, has been found to lower cholesterol by causing the body to produce nitric oxide, which widens the blood vessels.

Grapes

Super sweet fruits like grapes are ideal. The antioxidant-filled fruit is known for its anti-inflammatory qualities, especially with regards to heart health. Frozen grapes also make a great dessert.

 

 

Broccoli

It’s a cooling cruciferous super food that carries its weight in iron. One medium stalk of broccoli on a salad, stir fry, or for dippin' amounts to 2.1 mg of iron. Munch on steamed broccoli with some type of grilled fish.

Avocado

Yum guacamole? I certainly don't need an excuse to eat it, but avocado is great for you.

Yes, avocadoes have fat, but it’s a monounsaturated fat, a so-called "good fat" that helps control blood sugar, which in turn controls overall weight. Avocados also contain a rare weight-loss friendly carbohydrate.

Cucumber

Quintessentially cooling. While it seems like water and a few seeds, subtle cucumbers contain most of the B vitamins and so much more such as folic acid, vitamin C, calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, and zinc.

Source: Fit & Health

Raghda Sawas

Best Foods for Your Heart

From breakfast to dinner (and snacks in between) you're entire day can be heart-healthy! A good-for-your-ticker diet doesn't have to be bland or boring, as we show you here with these heart-y foods that will leave you satisfied.

Oatmeal

Start your day with a steaming bowl of oats, which are full of omega-3 fatty acids, folate, and potassium. This fiber-rich super food can lower levels of LDL (or bad) cholesterol and help keep arteries clear.

Opt for coarse or steel-cut oats over instant varieties—which contain more fiber—and top your bowl off with a banana for another 4 grams of fiber.

Salmon

Super-rich in omega-3 fatty acids, salmon can effectively reduce blood pressure and keep clotting at bay. Aim for two servings per week, which may reduce your risk of dying of a heart attack by up to one-third.

"Salmon contains the carotenoid astaxanthin, which is a very powerful antioxidant," says cardiologist  Stephen T. Sinatra, MD, the author of Lower Your Blood Pressure In Eight Weeks. But be sure to choose wild salmon over farm-raised fish, which can be packed with insecticides, pesticides, and heavy metals.

Not a fan of salmon? Other oily fish like mackerel, tuna, herring, and sardines will give your heart the same boost.

Avocado

Add a bit of avocado to a sandwich or spinach salad to up the amount of heart-healthy fats in your diet. Packed with monounsaturated fat, avocados can help lower LDL levels while raising the amount of HDL cholesterol in your body.

 

"Avocados are awesome," says Dr. Sinatra. "They allow for the absorption of other carotenoids—especially beta-carotene and lycopene—which are essential for heart health."

Full of monounsaturated fats, olive oil lowers bad LDL cholesterol and reduces your risk of developing heart disease.

Results from the Seven Countries Study, which looked at cardiovascular disease incidences across the globe, showed that while men in Crete had a predisposition for high cholesterol levels, relatively few died of heart disease because their diet focused on heart-healthy fats found in olive oil. Look for extra-virgin or virgin varieties—they're the least processed—and use them instead of butter when cooking.

Spinach

Spinach can help keep your ticker in top shape thanks to its stores of lutein, folate, potassium, and fiber.

But upping your servings of any veggies is sure to give your heart a boost.  The Physicians' Health Study examined more than 15,000 men without heart disease for a period of 12 years. Those who ate at least two-and-a-half servings of vegetables each day cut their risk of heart disease by about 25%, compared with those who didn't eat the veggies. Each additional serving reduced risk by another 17%.

Soy

Soy may lower cholesterol, and since it is low in saturated fat, it's still a great source of lean protein in a heart-healthy diet.

Look for natural sources of soy, like edamame, tempeh, or organic silken tofu. And soy milk is a great addition to a bowl of oatmeal or whole-grain cereal. But watch the amount of salt in your soy: some processed varieties like soy dogs can contain added sodium, which boosts blood pressure.

Legumes

Fill up on fiber with lentils, chickpeas, and black and kidney beans. They're packed with omega-3 fatty acids, calcium, and soluble fiber.

 

Berries

Blueberries, raspberries, strawberries—whatever berry you like best—are full of anti-inflammatories, which reduce your risk of heart disease and cancer.

"Blackberries and blueberries are especially great," says Sinatra. "But all berries are great for your vascular health."

Source: Health.com

Raghda Sawas