Category Archives: Health

Scientists Using HIV To Stop Spread Of HIV

David Harrich, from the Queensland Institute of Medical
Research, said he had successfully modified a protein in
HIV that the virus needed to replicate and instead made
it “potently” inhibit virus growth.
“I have never seen anything like it. The modified protein
works every time. If this research continues down its strong
path, and bear in mind there are many hurdles to clear, we’re
looking at a cure for AIDS,” said Harrich.
Harrich said the modified protein, which he had named
Nullbasic, had shown a “remarkable” ability to arrest HIV
growth in a lab environment and could have exciting
implications both in curbing AIDS and treating existing HIV
He described it as “fighting fire with fire”.
“The virus might infect a cell but it wouldn’t spread. You
would still be infected with HIV, it’s not a cure for the virus,
but the virus would stay latent, it wouldn’t wake up, so it
wouldn’t develop into AIDS ” said Harrich of his study,
published in the latest edition of the journal Human Gene
“With a treatment like this, you would maintain a healthy
immune system


Bleaching Can Cause Kidney Failure, Infertility – Experts

Dr Akinlolu Siyanbola, a Medical expert has warned
Nigerians on the dangers of using bleaching products.
Siyanbola, a dermatologist at the Ladoke Akintola University
of Technology Hospital, Osogbo, in an interview with the
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Osogbo, maintained that
consistent usage of bleaching products over a long period
could lead to kidney failure, cancer and infertility. His
assertion was also corroborated by Dr Abimbola Ibrahim in a
separate interview.
According to Dr Siyanbola, consistent usage of bleaching
products over a long period could make the kidney to fail,
and could cause diabetes. He explained that bleaching
products could also cause osteoporosis (loss of bone
density), psychiatric manifestation and systemic
hypertension among other ailments.
The dermatologist said that bleaching products contain
chemical agents that reduce the activities of the natural cell
which protects the skin from the adverse effects of sunlight.
The agents, he said, change the skin to occhronus manifested
in different colours of the body.
However, in his reaction, Dr Abimbola Ibrahim, disclosed
that people who use bleaching products may end up being
infertile. Ibrahim said products lighten the skin and cause it
to lose its natural protective barrier, making it to be
vulnerable. The medical expert added that infection spreads
faster and broader, thus leading to skin cancer

To the ladies and men hope you hear this ???

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Patience Jonathan Hurriedly Flown Out To Germany Again

Nigeria’s First Lady,
Dame Patience Jonathan,
has been flown out to
Germany for what a
Presidency source said
was for a check-up. Other
reports say the sudden
journey was another
emergency following a
relapse in her health
condition. gathers that the first lady had to be
flown out due to new health concerns that developed
overnight. Due to her sudden departure for Germany, we
learnt that her appearance at a presidential event scheduled
for 6:00 PM where the president hosted foreign
ambassadors to Nigeria had to be cancelled.
The first lady’s state of health has been shrouded in official
secrecy as the presidency will neither confirm reports of her
ill health nor disclose the real reasons behind her frequent
foreign trips of late. Her principal media aide Ayo Osinlu,
said that he couldn’t tell of her movements because he was
not in Abuja at the moment but a Presidency source said that
she only travelled on Monday for a check-up.
“You will recall that since she returned last year, madam has
not travelled out of the country. This trip is just for a
check-up, nothing more. Any report that she had been
hurriedly flown abroad is far from the truth,” the source

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Beijing air pollution soars to hazard level

The air smells of coal dust and car fumes
Air pollution in the Chinese capital Beijing has reached
levels judged as hazardous to human health.
Readings from both official and unofficial monitoring stations
suggested that Saturday’s pollution has soared past danger
levels outlined by the World Health Organization (WHO).
The air tastes of coal dust and car fumes, two of the main
sources of pollution, says a BBC correspondent.
Economic growth has left air quality in many cities notoriously
A heavy smog has smothered Beijing for many days, says the
BBC’s Damian Grammaticas, in the capital.
By Saturday afternoon it was so thick you could see just a
few hundred metres in the city centre, our correspondent
says, with tower blocks vanishing into the greyness.
Hazy view
Even indoors the air looked hazy, he says.
WHO guidelines say average
concentrations of the tiniest
pollution particles – called PM2.5 –
should be no more than 25
microgrammes per cubic metre.
Air is unhealthy above 100
microgrammes. At 300, all children
and elderly people should remain
Official Beijing city readings on Saturday suggested pollution
levels over 400. Unofficial reading from a monitor at the US
embassy recorded 800.
Once inhaled, the tiny particles can cause respiratory
infections, as well as increased mortality from lung cancer
and heart disease.
Last year Chinese authorities warned the US embassy not to
publish its data. But the embassy said the measurements were
for the benefit of embassy personnel and were not citywide.


People wearing mask

People wearing mask

Revealing the Importance of Eating Natural Low Carb Chocolate


For most Americans, they really love to eat various types of chocolates. Whether the available choice is a white, milk or dark chocolate, these people will reveal their appreciation while eating every bit of this sweet treat. Unfortunately, some offered products on the market today are unhealthy. This means that they incorporate extreme amount of sugar, fats and additives. Once the body absorbs these unhealthy substances, it starts to experience undesirable effects.

Because of this concern, chocolate producers now focus on giving the best and healthiest options to many consumers worldwide. They want to assure that the ingredients are safer for the body and provide the exact good feel to reveal positive mood after eating few chocolate bits. This is very important in fighting depression and keeping the energy of the body higher. Today, among the best options include the low carb chocolate. It presents the most healthful nutrients that include the best antioxidant properties to fight aging.

When the body is experiencing depression, you can easily observe the mood swing and affects your daily routines. This likewise affects the functionality of your brain and easily lets you feel disappointed. Because of this, you must have the best solution like eating the most healthful sweet treat without allowing your disappointments to come out.

Keep in mind that when you feel weary and frustrated, eating few pieces of chocolates can make your day much better. The natural ingredients of these types of goodies can let your mentality feel relax and allow the circulation of your blood flowing freely. Of course, you have to make sure that you eat the best and low carb chocolate that presents healthful substances for the benefit of your body structure. When you choose, you have to check the label of the product and be sure that a trusted company manufactured it.

Aside from choosing the best low carbohydrate chocolates, you may as well consider eating those made from organic whey. Otherwise, there are natural dark chocolates also but they are expensive compared to the traditional choices. One reason is that they present the best organic cacao nutrients and will never harm the body even if you consumed more than what you desire. Furthermore, they do not present harmful substances that can ruin your fitness plan. Even health experts today can prove the real health benefits of these sweet treats and they continue to gain popularity on the market today.

Always remember that low carbohydrate, dark and organic whey chocolates are the best solutions to deal with your sweet craving without harming your body. This is very important to guarantee that you will stay healthy even if you eat your favorite goodies. These options contain no artificial sweeteners and can include them on your regular dieting each day. In fact, even individuals who are suffering from diabetic issues can enjoy these healthful

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Delightful Fruit Dessert Recipes


Fruit desserts are a refreshing change after consuming a heavy calorie laden meal. Minimalist yet delicious beyond belief, nothing concludes a meal more graciously than a dessert comprising a heady concoction of strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and what have you. The sprightly colors and flavors that are characteristic of fruit based desserts evoke blissful emotions with every spoonful of nature’s bounty. Here are 5 delightful fruit dessert recipes which you can savor with a broad smile of satisfaction swept across your face.

Fruit Dessert Recipe 1: Milk and Strawberry Pudding



  • 15-18 fresh strawberries
  • 600ml of full cream fresh milk
  • 180-200g of caster sugar
  • 1 packet of agar agar powder


Method: Wash strawberries and hull them to remove the leafy tops and stems. Slice them into wedges and keep aside. In a pot of 600 ml water, combine the sugar and agar agar powder and stir thoroughly until well blended. Bring the mixture to a boil on medium heat and keep stirring until thick. When the agar-agar mixture starts to boil, whisk in the milk to make the milk jello. Bring to a boil and turn the heat off. Pour the milk jelly mixture into dessert cups and allow them to cool. Top each cup with 4 to 6 strawberry wedges. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving.

Fruit Dessert Recipe 2: Fruit Cobbler



  • 1 cup of granulated sugar
  • 1 cup of all purpose flour
  • 1 cup of milk
  • ½ stick of butter
  • 2 cups of assorted fruit (blueberries, peaches, raspberries and strawberries
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract


Method: Begin by melting the butter in an oven-safe dish over medium heat. Next mix together the flour, milk, vanilla in a bowl and combine thoroughly. Now pour this mixture into a prepared pan and tip the fruits evenly all over the top. Place in the oven and bake at a temperature of 300° F for about an hour until done. Serve with a dollop of whipped cream.

Fruit Dessert Recipe 3: Blueberry Crisp



  • 4 cups of frozen blueberries
  • 1 tablespoon of fresh lemon juice
  • ¾ cup of firmly packed light brown sugar
  • ½ cup of all purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon of ground cinnamon
  • 4 tablespoons of unsalted butter or margarine


Method: Preheat the oven to a temperature of 375° F and grease a shallow baking dish with butter or margarine. Arrange the blueberries evenly over the bottom of the prepared baking dish and drizzle with lemon juice. In another large bowl combine the brown sugar, cinnamon, butter, flour and rolled oats. Drizzle the mixture evenly over the blueberry mixture in the pan. Bake for about 30 minutes until the top is golden and bubbling. Cool on wire racks for a couple of minutes. Serve warm!

Fruit Dessert Recipe 4: Yogurt Fruit Salad



  • 2 apples cored, seeded and diced
  • 2 bananas, chopped
  • 2 cups of strawberries, hulled and chopped
  • 2 cups of grapes
  • 1 cup of vanilla yogurt
  • ½ tablespoons of honey
  • ½ cup of assorted chopped nuts of your choice
  • ½ cup of raisins


Method: Combine all the fruit in a large bowl. Now stir in the yogurt and honey and mix thoroughly. Now transfer the dough to a bowl and refrigerate for at least 3 hours before. Top off the fruit salad with nuts and raisins and serve chilled.

Fruit Dessert Recipe 5: Apple Crisp



  • 6 cooking apples, cored, peeled and sliced into chunks
  • 1 cup of granulated sugar
  • 1 cup of all purpose flour
  • 1 large fresh egg
  • ½ cup of butter
  • Ground cinnamon
  • Ground cloves


Method: Preheat the oven to a temperature of 325° F. Next coat the quart baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Now, peel, core and cut the apples into equal sized chunks. Place the apples at the bottom of the prepared baking dish. In a large bowl combine the flour, sugar and egg and mix thoroughly. Drizzle the crumb mixture over the apple chunks at the bottom of the baking dish. Speckle the apple chunks with the remaining butter, ground cinnamon and ground cloves. Place the baking dish in the oven and bake for an hour until the crust turns golden brown.

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Why Afternoon May Be the Best Time to Exercise


Does exercise influence the body’s internal clock? Few of us may be conscious of it, but our bodies, and in turn our health, are ruled by rhythms. “The heart, the liver, the brain — all are controlled by an endogenous circadian rhythm,” says Christopher Colwell, a professor of psychiatry at the University of California, Los Angeles’s Brain Research Institute, who led a series of new experiments on how exercise affects the body’s internal clock. The studies were conducted in mice, but the findings suggest that exercise does affect our circadian rhythms, and the effect may be most beneficial if the exercise is undertaken midday.

For the study, which appears in the December Journal of Physiology, the researchers gathered several types of mice. Most of the animals were young and healthy. But some had been bred to have a malfunctioning internal clock, or pacemaker, which involves, among other body parts, a cluster of cells inside the brain “whose job it is to tell the time of day,” Dr. Colwell says.

These pacemaker cells receive signals from light sources or darkness that set off a cascade of molecular effects. Certain genes fire, expressing proteins, which are released into the body, where they migrate to the heart, neurons, liver and elsewhere, choreographing those organs to pulse in tune with the rest of the body. We sleep, wake and function physiologically according to the dictates of our body’s internal clock.

But, Dr. Colwell says, that clock can become discombobulated. It is easily confused, for instance, by viewing artificial light in the evening, he says, when the internal clock expects darkness. Aging also worsens the clock’s functioning, he says. “By middle age, most of us start to have trouble falling asleep and staying asleep,” he says. “Then we have trouble staying awake the next day.”

The consequences of clock disruptions extend beyond sleepiness. Recent research has linked out-of-sync circadian rhythm in people to an increased risk for diabetes, obesity, certain types of cancer, memory loss and mood disorders, including depression.

“We believe there are serious potential health consequences” to problems with circadian rhythm, Dr. Colwell says. Which is why he and his colleagues set out to determine whether exercise, which is so potent physiologically, might “fix” a broken clock, and if so, whether exercising in the morning or later in the day is more effective in terms of regulating circadian rhythm.

They began by letting healthy mice run, an activity the animals enjoy. Some of the mice ran whenever they wanted. Others were given access to running wheels only in the early portion of their waking time (mice are active at night) or in the later stages, the equivalent of the afternoon for us.

After several weeks of running, the exercising mice, no matter when they ran, were found to be producing more proteins in their internal-clock cells than the sedentary animals. But the difference was slight in these healthy animals, which all had normal circadian rhythms to start with.

So the scientists turned to mice unable to produce a critical internal clock protein. Signals from these animals’ internal clocks rarely reach the rest of the body.

But after several weeks of running, the animals’ internal clocks were sturdier. Messages now traveled to these animals’ hearts and livers far more frequently than in their sedentary counterparts.

The beneficial effect was especially pronounced in those animals that exercised in the afternoon (or mouse equivalent).

That finding, Dr. Colwell says, “was a pretty big surprise.” He and his colleagues had expected to see the greatest effects from morning exercise, a popular workout time for many athletes.

But the animals that ran later produced more clock proteins and pumped the protein more efficiently to the rest of the body than animals that ran early in their day.

What all of this means for people isn’t clear, Dr. Colwell says. “It is evident that exercise will help to regulate” our bodily clocks and circadian rhythms, he says, especially as we enter middle age.

But whether we should opt for an afternoon jog over one in the morning “is impossible to say yet,” he says.

Late-night exercise, meanwhile, is probably inadvisable, he continues. Unpublished results from his lab show that healthy mice running at the animal equivalent of 11 p.m. or so developed significant disruptions in their circadian rhythm. Among other effects, they slept poorly.

“What we know, right now,” he says, “is that exercise is a good idea” if you wish to sleep well and avoid the physical ailments associated with an aging or clumsy circadian rhythm. And it is possible, although not yet proven, that afternoon sessions may produce more robust results.

“But any exercise is likely to be better than none,” he concludes. “And if you like morning exercise, which I do, great. Keep it up.”


Source: nytimes

Legalizing of Marijuana Raises Health Concerns


In the ’60s, marijuana was a hallmark of the counterculture, along with free love, bell bottoms, long hair and bandannas. But marijuana has had the most staying power.

This month, in a remarkable first, the recreational use of marijuana became legal (depending on your definition) in Colorado and Washington. Over a dozen other states have decriminalized possession of small amounts, and Massachusetts recently became the 18th state to allow its use for medicinal purposes.

Though federal law still bans both the sale and possession of marijuana, President Obama has said the federal government has “bigger fish to fry” and won’t aggressively prosecute tokers in states where its use is legal.

The rise of marijuana as an adult pastime is a victory for those who’ve always felt that its hazards were overblown. Proponents of legalization argue that marijuana is much safer to use than alcohol, pointing out that it is virtually impossible to overdose on marijuana.

While marijuana can be addictive, scientists generally agree that fewer than 10 percent of marijuana smokers become dependent on the drug, compared with 15 percent for alcohol, 23 percent for heroin and 32 percent for tobacco. Marijuana does contain carcinogens, including tar and other toxins similar to those found in tobacco, but people generally do not smoke marijuana in the same amounts as cigarettes.

Still, legalization takes health consumers into murky territory. Even though marijuana is the most commonly used illegal drug in the United States, questions about its health effects remain.

For starters, this is not your parents’ pot. Today’s marijuana is much more potent: The mean concentration of THC, the psychoactive ingredient, in confiscated cannabis more than doubled between 1993 and 2008.

Increased potency may be having unforeseen consequences. The human brain’s cannabinoid receptors are typically activated by naturally occurring chemicals in the body called endocannabinoids, which are similar to THC. There is a high density of cannabinoid receptors in parts of the brain that affect pleasure, memory and concentration. Some research suggests that these areas continue to be affected by marijuana use even after the “high” dissipates.

“It’s much more potent marijuana, which may explain why we’ve seen a pretty dramatic increase in admission to emergency rooms and treatment programs for marijuana,” said Dr. Nora D. Volkow, director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse. “When we hear, ‘Well, I smoked and nothing happened to me,’ we need to think about the context of when these people started to take it, how frequently they used and how active the marijuana was.”

Those in favor of legalizing marijuana say the increase in potency has been exaggerated, and that when users have more powerful pot, they adjust their consumption and actually smoke less.

Teenagers may be more vulnerable to addiction, however, and those who start smoking pot at a younger age are at higher risk. Approximately one in six will become addicted, Dr. Volkow said. Young adults who start smoking marijuana at earlier ages also tend to smoke much more, and more often, than those who start in their later teens, researchers say.

In users who develop a dependence or addiction, quitting can cause intense withdrawal symptoms, like anxiety, trouble sleeping, lack of appetite, mood swings, irritability and depression, experts say.

Both Colorado and Washington restricted marijuana use to adults age 21 and over when they legalized recreational use in November. But experts worry that the perception of marijuana is changing because its stigma as an outlawed drug has eroded.

“When people can go to a ‘clinic’ or ‘cafe’ and buy pot, that creates the perception that it’s safe,” said Dr. A. Eden Evins, director of the Center for Addiction Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. “Before we unleash the powers of the marketplace to woo people to use this addictive substance, we need to better understand who is at risk.”

“Once moneyed interests are involved, this trend will be difficult to reverse,” she added.

The most disturbing new studies about early teenage use of marijuana showed that young adults who started smoking pot regularly before they were 16 performed significantly worse on cognitive tests of brain function than those who had started smoking later in adolescence. They performed particularly poorly on tests assessing executive function, which is responsible for planning and abstract thinking, as well as understanding rules and inhibiting inappropriate responses.

Imaging scans also found detectable differences in how their brains worked, said Staci Gruber, the lead author of these studies and director of the cognitive and clinical neuroimaging core at the imaging center at McLean Hospital in Boston. Imaging scans found alterations in the frontal cortex white matter tracts of the brain in the early-starters, she said, that are associated with impulsiveness.

“The frontal cortex is the last part of the brain to come online, and the most important,” Dr. Gruber said. “Early exposure perhaps changes the trajectory of brain development, such that ability to perform complex executive function tasks is compromised.”

A recent study showing a drop in IQ scores among teenagers who are regular pot smokers is especially troubling, Dr. Evins said. A more recent study found that people who started smoking marijuana as teenagers and used it heavily for decades lost IQ points over time, while those who started smoking as adults did not, though some critics have said these differences may not be meaningful. Older survey studies had indicated that regular pot smokers were less likely to graduate from high school or pursue higher education, but it was never clear which came first, difficulty in school or the drug use.

“If parents who are spending thousands of dollars on SAT prep courses knew about the cognitive effects marijuana has on their kids’ brains, they would be up in arms,” Dr. Evins said. Other health concerns about marijuana are less well documented but may turn out to be significant. States that legalized marijuana prohibit driving under its influence, and studies have found marijuana smoking increases weaving between lanes and slows reaction times. And although marijuana is not as damaging to the lungs as tobacco, in part because people do not smoke a pack of joints a day, a regular habit can eventually take a toll on the lungs.

At the very least, the new studies suggest parents who recall their own pot parties may want to suggest greater moderation to their children. And teenagers who insist on trying marijuana are better off waiting until they’re older.

“It’s the same message as with alcohol,” Dr. Gruber said. “Just hold on, it’s worth it to wait.”