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Xeroderma or xerodermia or xerosis cutis is a skin condition characterized by excessive drying of...

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Treatment Options To Quit Smoking And Prevent Nicotine Dependence

Smoking is estimated to the most commonly preventable cause of death in the US. Stoppage of smoking leads to immediate benefit of health. For younger smokers quitting smoking leads to having normal life expectancy whereas for older people quality of life is improved along with along with addition of years to life.It is reported that the risk of several diseases drop immediately following giving up smoking. The risk of heart attack becomes 50% less in the first year of quitting smoking, in the second and third years of quitting smoking the risk of suffering from stroke becomes comparable to a non smoker and tenth year of smoking quitting the risk of suffering from cancer becomes half. There are several treatment options which help a smoker to give up smoking successfully. These options are usually the most helpful when used in combination.
The treatment options are
1. Drugs: these drugs include nicotine replacement therapy and non nicotine drugs. Both of these treatment options are approved by the FDA, USA. Pregnant, breastfeeding women, smokers less than 18 years etc should consult doctors before choosing the appropriate drugs,
    A.  Nicotine replacement therapy: in nicotine replacement therapy nicotine is advised to relieve the bothersome withdrawal symptoms. Unlike common belief  nicotine does not cause cancer. Nicotine supplements are given via various forms like nicotine patches, chewing gums, spray,inhalers etc.
        1.Nicotine patches are applied on the skin so that nicotine is delivered to the blood stream. The patch is replaced every day with a new one. The total duration of nicotine patch treatment is 8 weeks, if craving or the symptoms is not relieved despite treatment for two weeks or more doctor should be consulted regarding the dose of the nicotine in the patch or use of other addition al drugs.
        2.Nicotine chewing gums: these gums release nicotine in the oral cavity which enters the blood stream through the linings of the mouth. Drinking and eating should be avoided immediately after chewing the gums
        3.Nicotine lozenges act in the same way as the nicotine gums by releasing nicotine in the mouth and then reaching the blood stream
        4.Nicotine nasal spray and inhalers: these are prescription drugs which when sprayed or inhaled through the nostrils gets absorbed through the mucosal lining of the nose into the blood stream.
    B.  Non nicotine drugs: there are some drugs approved for use in nicotine dependence. These are
        1.Bupropion: this antidepressant drug raises the level of dopamine in the brain just like the nicotine and relieves the withdrawal symptoms. This drug is often prescribed along with nicotine patch. Bupropion also helps to lower the weight gain following quitting smoking. people with past history of seizure or severe degree of head injury should avoid this drug.
        2.Varenicline: this drug binds with nicotine receptor and thus relieves the withdrawal symptoms and also reduces the pleasant effects experienced with nicotine use.
        3.Nortriptyline: this antidepressant helps in nicotine withdrawal by lowering noradrenalin level in the brain

2. Counseling: often drugs are combined with counseling to get maximum benefit. Counseling options are
    a.  Telephone counseling
    b.  Group counseling
    c.  Individual counseling
    d.  Internet counseling
Use of certain products may help the person to avoid smoking, although scientific evidences regarding the usefulness of these products are not very strong. These products include certain herbs, supplements, nicotine lollipops, balms, hypnosis, electronic cigarettes etc.
Certain tips are helpful to refrain from smoking, these are
1. Motivating oneself all the time
2. Do not be discouraged if slip occurs
3. Identifying individual triggering factors for smoking and the challenges to remain tobacco free
4. Seek support whenever necessary
5. Practicing self talk
6. Regularly evaluating the benefits achieved from quitting smoking
7. Avoiding alcohol
Measures to prevent nicotine dependence
The best measure to prevent nicotine dependence is complete avoidance of smoking and other tobacco containing products.
As a parent or responsible citizen certain measures can be taken; these are
1) Promotion of smoke fee environments
2) Supporting laws which increases taxes on cigarettes and other tobacco containing products
3) Talking to teenagers regarding their ideas on smoking
4) Taking part in different community services which promote avoiding tobacco

Men do undergo hormonal changes during partner’s pregnancy

Hormones play a vital role during pregnancy that leads to various changes in your body and also hamper your mood. Men do undergo the same changes as that of women too. Just because they do not carry the baby or breastfeed them does not mean that they do not have such bodily changes.

Previous studies have indicated that man’s hormonal levels changes after becoming a father. However, new studies point out otherwise. “Our findings suggest that these changes may begin even earlier, during the transition to fatherhood,” said lead study author Robin Edelstein from University of Michigan.

During the study, researchers found that women showed large prenatal increases in salivary testosterone, cortisol, which is primarily know as the stress hormone, estradiol that functions like estrogen and progesterone. On the other hand men showed significant prenatal declines in testosterone and estradiol but no detectable changes in cortisol or progesterone. While the results in women were expected, the results seen in men suggest that impending fatherhood might cause men’s hormone levels to change. Lower testosterone level in men reduces aggression and helps to bond better with the baby after the birth.

“We do not yet know exactly why men’s hormones are changing, these changes could be a function of psychological changes that men experience as they prepare to become fathers, changes in their romantic relationships, or even physical changes that men experience along with their pregnant partners,” Edelstein explained.

Additional studies are warranted to understand whether partners prenatal hormone changes are linked with postpartum behavior and adjustment.

Women are more prone to heart disease than others

A new research has revealed that the hormone estrogen in women plays a key role in regulating two of the most common risk factors for heart disease and stroke.

Researchers at Western University's Robarts Research Institute have identified that an estrogen receptor, previously shown to regulate blood pressure in women, also plays an important role in regulating low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol levels, also known as bad cholesterol, which drives the process that leads to heart disease. Researchers showed that the G-protein coupled estrogen receptor 30 (GPER) when activated by estrogen helps lower LDL cholesterol levels in the blood by inhibiting the protein PCSK-9.

Researcher Ross Feldman said that this is a really important finding because there has always been some indication that estrogen was protective in lowering cholesterol, but they didn't understand how.Feldman added that the mechanism of estrogen's effect was kind of a black box because they didn't know the receptors responsible for doing it.

Feldman continued that what they found is that women who have this same defective GPER, have higher LDL levels, suggesting that the second rate GPER is important not only for blood pressure, but for cholesterol levels as well.

Feldman continued that together, these are the two most powerful risk factors in terms of heart disease and both are adversely affected by having a second-rate GPER. The study is published in the journal Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis and Vascular Biology.

Losing weight, quitting smoking may reduce risk of old age Dementia

A new study has showed that old age dementia can be controlled by losing weight, quitting smoking and also reduces the risk of heart diseases and diabetes.

Dementia is not just a term or single disease in itself, but it is rather a general term that would show some symptoms such as memory impairments, communication and thinking problems etc.

the researchers have also suggested that dementia can be included as a part national public health prevention and detection programs along with some other non communicable diseases. It is always better to treat this at the earliest than too late to make healthy lifestyle changes.

The World Alzheimer's Report 2014 commissioned by Alzheimer's disease International said that dementia's links to physical health could be effective at fending off dementia even in later life.

It is founded that Diabetes can hamper a person's risk of developing Dementia by about 50 percent. Obesity and lack of physical activity leads to high blood pressure, which is been associated with many cases of dementia.

Marc Wortmann, executive director of Alzheimer's Disease International, said that the risk factors for dementia "overlap" with those of other major non-communicable diseases. It would draw out similarities with that of many forms of non-communicable diseases.

George McNamara, head of policy at the UK's Alzheimer's Society, said many lifestyle factors play a key role in the development of dementia.

Obese kids may lower heart disease risk by going vegan

A new study has revealed that plant based vegetarian diet is effective in reducing cardiovascular risk in obese children. According to Cleveland Clinic research, obese children who begin a very low-fat, plant based vegetarian diet may have lesser chance of getting heart disease through variations in their weight, blood pressure, BMI, cholesterol levels, insulin sensitivity and high sensitivity C-reactive.

The four-week study compared a plant-based vegan diet to the American Heart Association (AHA) diet in 28 obese children with high cholesterol between the ages of 9 and 18. One parent of each child also followed the assigned diet plan.

Those on the plant-based diet consumed plants and whole grains, with limited avocado and nuts, no added fat, and no animal products and these children experienced significant improvements in nine measures: BMI, systolic blood pressure, weight, mid-arm circumference, total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, and insulin, as well as two common markers of heart disease, myeloperoxidase and high-sensitivity C-reactive protein. Therefore plant based diets are said to be effective, if at all they are wisely used.

Those on American Heart Association diet, had more of vegetables, whole grains and non-whole grains, limited sodium, low-fat dairy, selected plant oils, lean meat and fish in moderation.

Daily avocado cuts heart disease risk

Adding an avocado to your daily diet helps lower bad cholesterol and reduce the risk of heart disease, a study says."Including one avocado each day as part of a moderate-fat, cholesterol-lowering diet provides additional LDL (bad cholesterol) lowering affects which benefit CVD (cardiovascular disease) risk" said Penny Kris-Etherton, professor at Pennsylvania State University.

Known to have originated in Mexico and Central America, avocado is cultivated in a very limited scale in Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Maharashtra, Karnataka in the south-central India and in the eastern Himalayan state Sikkim. Avocados are known to be a nutrient-dense food, high in monounsaturated fatty acids. Previous studies have suggested that avocados are a cholesterol-lowering food, but this is the first study to look at health implications of avocados beyond monounsaturated fatty acids, the researchers added.

For the study, the researchers tested three different diets, all designed to lower cholesterol: a lower-fat diet, consisting of 24 percent fat, and two moderate fat diets, with 34 percent fat. The moderate fat diets were nearly identical, however, one diet incorporated one Hass avocado every day while the other used a comparable amount of high oleic acid oils - such as olive oil - to match the fatty acid content of one avocado.

Keep off those salty snacks if you want your organs to stay healthy

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Diabetes medications may lead to pancreatic cancer

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Being a Women

“Behind every successful man there is a woman”. Not only in the case of a man but this saying stands for the functioning of the whole world. She is said to be the ultimate strength and support behind the success of an individual. There...
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