Healthy eating

Medley of Fruits

An assortment of fruits like walermelon,
pineapple, apples,
oranges, sweet lime,
chickoo, bananas and pomegranate.
1 tsp lemon juice
2 tbs candied rose
petals (gulkand)
1 cup fresh orange or sweet lime juice

Scoop out the watermelon, pineapple and apples into small-sized balls. Sprinkle some lemon juice onto the apples. Separate the pomegranate seeds, peel and slice the banana and chickoo, peel and deseed the orange and sweet lime.
Mix the candied rose petals with fresh orange juice or sweetlime juice. Arrange the fruits in a serving plate and refrigerate. Just before serving, lace candied rose petals and fresh juice mixture onto the arranged fruit. Serve immediately.

Are you suffering from sore eyes?
Conjunctivitis, one of the most common and irritating ailments, makes its presence felt in summer. And as it is highly infectious, it quickly spreads from eye to eye and from person to person. Prevention is better than cure... so read on to find out how you can stop conjunctivitis from spreading.

How to prevent IT
What everyone should remember is that prevention is better than cure. So, if somebody is suffering from conjunctivitis, the patient as well as the people around the patient, should be educated on how to prevent the infection from spreading. This can be done by:

  • Not using the articles, which have been used by the person suffering from conjunctivitis, especially handkerchiefs, towels, pens etc.
  • The patient should be advised not to rub his eye and touch articles around him/her.
  • Dark glasses actually have no important role to play -- they only prevent the patient from getting intolerance to light.
  • Conjunctivitis does not spread by looking into a patient's red eye but by coming in contact with him or articles used by him. Hence, the patient should wash his hands frequently.
  • The person applying drops in the patient's eye should also always wash his hands properly before and after putting the drops.
  • The drops should be used only by a single patient and never be shared.
  • One must refrain from self-medication or from going to a chemist for drops. Always consult a doctor first.
  • The onset of summer, after a cool winter, brings with it several maladies, the most common illness being an irritating condition which affects the eyes and which is painful and highly infectious - conjunctivitis.

    Conjunctivitis or sore eyes, is a common eye condition affecting the Indian population, especially during summer. It is an inflammation of the conjunctiva and usually of infective or allergic origin. Conjunctivitis is the most common cause of red eye. It can be either due to some kind of infection or due to some kind of allergy in the eye. And the infection in the conjunctiva can be either bacterial or viral. Conjunctivitis can affect both adults and small children.

    Different strains of bacteria are responsible for different types of conjunctivitis. The mode of transmission is through the use of articles which are used by patients who are suffering from the conjunctivitis. A person suffering from conjunctivitis should never touch his eye, eg. rub his eye and touch objects around him with the same hand.

    Allergic conjunctivitis is more commonly seen in young children. These children are usually allergic to a variety of objects in the environment like pollens, sand particles, swimming pool, cosmetic powder, shampoo, soap etc.

    The most common symptom of conjunctivitis is a red eye with watering and stickiness of lids due to discharge. The lids of the eye may get swollen. Generally the redness is seen in the white part of the eye but sometimes it may affect the black part of the eye (cornea) as well, and at such times it needs prompt treatment. Patients even have pain and some times irritation with the sensation that a foreign particle has entered the eye. Because of watering of the eyes, patients may have photophobia or intolerance to light.

    When conjunctivitis occurs in one eye, very often, the other eye also gets infected soon after or simultaneously. Vision is usually not affected but when conjunctivitis is severe, it may cause blurred vision. The infection usually lasts for around 10 days, but sometimes it may go up to even 20 days.

    The standard treatment prescribed to patients suffering from conjunctivitis is the application of eye drops. Antibiotic drops should be applied a number of times a day in both eyes. The antibiotic drops take care of the infection while lubricating eye drops give a soothing effect to the eyes. Steroid drops can also be given but only under the supervision of a doctor.

    try this

    How to survive a heart attack
    Many people are alone when experiencing a heart attack and the person has just 10 seconds left before losing consciousness. If you are prone to an attack and ever happen to be alone when the symptoms set in, try these tips:

    Coughing repeatedly and vigorously is helpful to jerk the heart into action. A deep breath should be taken before each cough. The cough must be deep and prolonged, as when producing sputum from deep inside the chest and should be repeated about every two seconds without let up until help arrives or until the heart begins beating normally again. Deep breaths get oxygen into the lungs and coughing movements squeeze the heart and keep the blood circulating. In this way a heart attack patient can administer first aid to himself.

    Cucumber cure
    Summer time's the right time to befriend the cucumber. You can eat it or use it in many different ways to beat the heat. For sunburn, apply fresh cucumber paste or juice all over the affected areas. For wrinkles, apply cucumber paste every day on the face at bed-time. To gain weight, eat cucumber with dates frequently. For burning sensation in the eye, place thin slices of cucumber on both eyelids. For chronic constipation, take cucumber salad with every meal.

    Summer tips
    If you want to survive the onslaught of summer, the following tips could help you:

  • Dash under the shower as many times as you can.
  • Eat only fruits (especially melons), salads (cucumber), ice-cream, jelly, custard. Avoid regular meals.
  • Drink plenty of water, fruit juices, lemon water or jal jeera.
  • Have curds, lassi, buttermilk with pudina, tulsi leaves.
  • Wear only pure cotton clothes and under garments.
  • Use cologne talc after bath.
  • Take a close crop and avoid hair oils, use styling gel (if you must).
  • Pull off the heavy drapes in your bedroom and replace them with lace curtains. Keep your windows open and switch on the AC only at night.
  • Linger on while watering the garden, it'll keep the dust from blowing in and make your surroundings cooler.
  • Bhadrasana
    To tighten abdominal muscles and strengthen the spine, try doing the Bhadrasana. Sit with legs outstretched or lie supine. Inhale for three seconds while drawing feet towards groin, soles of the feet kept together. Place hands on respective knees, keep your body and neck erect, and retain breath for six seconds. Return to starting position. You may also gently flap the knees up and down in final position.

    Sex in summer
    In summer, doing the routine activities often puts one off. Sex is no exception. Many couples restrict sexual activity during summer being misled by the myth that sex is a `heaty' act. Nothing could be farther from the truth. Sexual activity can be enjoyed in all seasons provided the partners adapt their indulgences to the climate and each other's preferences. If a heavily sweating male is a turn-off for his partner, it makes better sense to be innovative and move under a shower. If the female partner experiences dryness, a lubricated condom may be used. Intercourse is not the only answer, there are numerous ways of cuddling up and caressing that are equally gratifying and even work up orgasms. Explore each other's bodies by running an ice cube over and over. It will cool you down and at the same time bring out the heat of passion more strongly.

    Foods that heals

    Like most orange-coloured fruits and vegetables, this is an excellent source of beta-carotene, which is important in its own right as an antioxidant and is also converted by the body into Vitamin A. An average papaya supplies twice the minimum daily need of Vitamin C and well over a quarter of the daily need of Vitamin A.

    Papayas are excellent for treating skin problems because of their high beta-carotene content and their generous provision of Vitamin C helps the body's defence mechanisms. They are also a useful food for invalids, the flesh being soft and easy to chew.

    Their most important constituent is an enzyme called papain, which is a great aid to digestion, although present in larger quantities in the unripe fruit.

    And the next time you eat a papaya, save the seeds, as they make an unusual spicy flavouring when added to pickles, vinegars and oils. Papaya leaves are used in the treatment of wounds, boils and leg ulcers, and the seeds are used as a traditional remedy for worms.

    2 minute clinic

    What is cholesterol?
    Cholesterol is one of our natural fats, occurring in every part of the body - brain, nerves, muscle, skin, heart - and it is needed for us to function normally. Most people don't know that a certain amount of cholesterol is crucial.

    How is cholesterol useful to the body?
    The body uses cholesterol to produce certain hormones, Vitamin D and bile acids, which help digest fat. But only a small amount is necessary. When the body produces too much cholesterol, over many years, the cholesterol is deposited in the artery walls.

    What are the types of cholesterol?
    There are two main types of cholesterol carriers: "good" sort (High Density Lipoprotein, or HDL), and a "bad" sort (Low Density Lipoprotein, or LDL). The HDL actually protects against hardening and narrowing of the arteries, but the LDL is the baddie that can contribute to cardio-vascular disease.

    How can you get more good cholesterol and less bad cholesterol?
    LDL can be lowered by following a low-fat diet, and HDL can be raised by taking regular exercise, which you should be doing anyway.

    And how does one know if he/she has high levels of LDL?
    A blood sample can determine if you have high LDL. But while cholesterol levels increase with age, any cardio-vascular risk has to be assessed in conjunction with other factors. Heredity plays a big part in whether a person has high cholesterol levels. Meanwhile, you can do the best for your arteries by not smoking, reducing your intake of saturated fat, and eating a Mediterranean-style diet. Also, some studies suggest that drinking a glass of red wine a day may reduce the negative effects of LDL cholesterol.

    Don't put your heads together!
    Anyone can get head lice. Lice are parasitic insects that feed on blood and can cause severe itching in the scalp. The only way to control the spread of lice is to avoid direct head-to-head contact with people.

    As the weather warms up, the incidence of head lice is said to increase... The sorry part is that those infested with these parasites often do little to get rid of them and happily pass them on to others!

    The most common places to pick up lice from are seats at cinema houses, public transport and schools/colleges where buddies often put their heads together. Once on good ground, it is very difficult to get rid of lice unless one goes for the right treatment now available at chemists stores.

    There are many kinds of blood-feeding insects which bite people, cause annoyance, skin reaction and disease. Of these, lice are most closely associated with humans. Lice are small, wingless, grayish-white and about 1/16 to 1/8 inch long. Human head lice infestations known as "pediculosis" affect persons of all ages, whether rich or poor.

    Contrary to popular belief, they may temporarily infest anyone, regardless of their level of cleanliness or economic status. Nits are louse eggs. They are small (about 1/32-inch), white to cream colour. Nits are often the first sign of a head lice infestation. Head lice glue their eggs to the base of the hair shaft, frequently behind the ears or on the nape of the neck.

    How do head lice spread?
    Anyone can get head lice. Pediculosis is not an indication of untidiness and knows no socio-economic boundaries. Lice cannot jump, hop or fly and have limited ability to crawl when away from the host.

    The head louse commonly infests school children since there is close contact with each other at school and at play and social interactions with each other (e.g., sharing hats, combs and brushes). Adult lice spread mainly by direct head-to-head contact with an infested person or stray hairs containing nits, personal items such as wigs, combs, hair brushes, hair rollers, helmets, headphones, towels, pillowcases and clothing, especially hats, sweaters, scarves, etc.

    What are the health implications of having head lice?
    Head lice are parasitic insects that feed on human blood. Blood is their only source of nourishment. Lice feed on blood several times a day. All lice feed on blood every 3-6 hours and can only survive about 20-48 hours without a blood meal. The saliva of the louse contains an anti-coagulant (prevents blood clotting) and causes severe itching. Head lice penetrate the scalp with their blood-sucking mouthparts, inject saliva and withdraw blood. This process causes intense itching.

    Due to the itchiness caused by lice and the continuous scratching by the nails, the germs from the nails can enter the scalp and can cause infections. Usually in severe situations, scarred, hardened, pigmented skin known as "Vagabond's Disease" may occur along with a rash and swollen lymph glands in the neck or under the arms.

    Children in whom the lice infestation is most common may become depressed and irritable. They may not perform well in their studies and extra-curricular activities due to social embarrassment and psychological tension.

    Can a person get head lice repeatedly?
    Unfortunately, the answer is yes. Most often, repeated infestations occur when not all of the nits were removed during treatment or when family members pass them back and forth to each other. If a head lice infestation is found in your family, all household members should be examined and treated.

    What are the methods of controlling lice?
    The most important thing to remember is to avoid head-to-head contact. Personal hygiene is not a complete safeguard against acquiring head lice. Some methods include combing with a lice comb and use of harmful and unpleasant chemicals which require prolonged overnight application. Some mothers are even known to use products like kerosene etc. to treat lice. However, an ideal method should be a fast-acting, simple, safe and effective application. Anti-lice oils and shampoos are now available as sure remedies for lice problems.

    Diet retards growth of HIV virus

    A healthy diet may retard the growth of the deadly HIV virus and help the infected people live a better life by boosting their energy levels and immune system, two UN agencies have stated. By strengthening the immune system and boosting energy levels, balanced nutrition could help the body defend against the ravages of the disease, WHO and Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) said in a joint manual.

    Those affected by HIV/AIDS need more protein to rebuild muscle tissue, more energy-rich food for weight gain, immune system-boosting vitamins and minerals and water to combat dehydration.

    Despite blunted appetites and difficulties in eating, people living with HIV/AIDS need to eat considerably more food to fight the illness and make up for weight loss.

    Recognising the relationship between infection and nutrition, the manual also offers simple and practical dietary suggestions for the estimated 42 million people living with HIV/AIDS. The manual focuses on ways of easing the symptoms of HIV/AIDS such as lack of appetite, tiredness and soreness of mouth by suggesting recipes for soups, teas and stews using fruit and vegetables that grow in the rural areas of the developing world.

    Developing countries, which are home to about 95 per cent of people with HIV/AIDS, do not have adequate healthcare resources to fight the disease. So the best way for them to respond to the illness is to maintain as balanced a diet as possible. "Food isn't a magic bullet. It won't stop people dying of AIDS...

    But, it can help them live longer, more comfortable and more productive lives," director of the FAO's Food and Nutrition Division, Mr. Kraisid Tontisirin said.

    The manual says that AIDS creates a vicious circle of physical decay -- the disruption of nutrient absorption suppresses the appetite and metabolism that leads to the deterioration of muscles, organs and tissues, thereby creating a susceptibility to secondary infections and other stresses that increase bodily demands for energy and nutrients that can't be absorbed.

    The WHO has released this manual hoping that it will be adapted by AIDS-affected communities and that it will make people aware of the vital role played by nutrition for someone living with HIV or AIDS.


    What should I do to avoid premature ejaculation?
    There are various methods commonly tried but usually ineffective. These include diverting attention during intercourse, pinching self during intercourse, application of anaesthetic cream or spray to make the penis numb, use of alcohol, masturbation before intercourse, use of condom etc. Control over ejaculation is a learning process and one can master it with practice. One of the effective methods to achieve control over ejaculation is the 'stop-start' or 'squeeze technique.' This method is governed by two principles:
    1. Learn to recognise the point before one reaches ejaculation and train oneself to stop stimulation before reaching the point of no return.
    2. Develop good tone of the pelvic floor muscles.

    (Send your queries to 'Sexline', c/o Afternoon or fax them on 22870371. All queries answered by Dr. Shirish Malde, Diplomate: American Board of Sexology)

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