Scientists Find ‘Pleasure Nerves’

Scientists say they understand more about how the body responds to pleasurable touch.

Mothers use touch to sooth their babies

A team, including scientists from the Unilever company, have identified a class of nerve fibres in the skin which specifically send pleasure messages.

And people had to be stroked at a certain speed – 4-5cm per second – to activate the pleasure sensation.
They say the study, published in Nature Neuroscience, could help understand how touch sustains human relationships.

For many years, scientists have been trying to understand the mechanisms behind how the body experiences pain, and the nerves involved in conveying those messages to the brain.

This is because people can suffer a great deal.

Neuropathy, where the peripheral nervous system is damaged, can be very painful and sometimes the messaging system goes wrong and people feel pain even when there is no cause.
“There are some mechanisms in place that are associated with behaviour and reward which are there to ensure relationships continue “ Says  Professor Francis McGlone
Hairy skin
But the researchers involved in this work were looking to understand the opposite sensation – pleasure.
This research, which also involved experts at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden and at the University of North Carolina, recorded nerve responses in 20 people.

They then tested how people responded to having their forearm skin stroked at a range of different speeds.
They identified “C-tactile” nerve fibres as those stimulated when people said a touch had been pleasant.

If the stroke was faster or slower than the optimum speed, the touch was not pleasurable and the nerve fibres were not activated.

The scientists also discovered that the C-tactile nerve fibres are only present on hairy skin, and are not found on the hand.

Professor Francis McGlone, now based at Unilever after an academic career where he carried out research into nerve response, says this is likely to be a deliberate “design”.

“We believe this could be Mother Nature‘s way of ensuring that mixed messages are not sent to the brain when it is in use as a functional tool.”

He said the speed at which people found arm-stroking pleasurable was the same as that which a mother uses to comfort a baby, or couples use to show affection.

Professor McGlone said it was part of the evolutionary mechanism that sustained relationships between adults, or with children.

“Our primary impulse as humans is procreation, but there are some mechanisms in place that are associated with behaviour and reward which are there to ensure relationships continue.”

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Sources: BBC NEWS :April-12. ’09

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Haliotidis (Abalone Shell)

Latin Plant Name: Concha Haliotidis
Pinyin Mandarin Name: Shi Jue Ming

Common English Name: Abalone Shell

Chinese Name:Shi jue ming

Part of Plant Used: Whole shell
....
Properties: Salty in flavour, cold in nature, it acts on liver channel. It is effective for nourishing Yin and checking exuberance of yang, clearing away the from the liver to improve vision, relieving dizziness due to liver-yang and conjunctival congestion due to liver-heat.
Origin: It is the shell of Halio tis diversicolor Reeve, H. gigantea discus Reeve and H.ovina Chemnitz, family Halio tidae.

Property, taste and attributive meridian.
Salty in taste, cold in property. Enters the liver meridian.
Effects: Calming the liver-yang and checking exuberance of Yang, clearing away heat from the liver to improve vision.

General Usage: To be decocted before adding other ingredients.
Meridians Entered: Liver, Kidneys

Common Medicinal  Usages:
Action:
To subdue hyperactivity of the liver, quench its fire and improve eyesight.

Indications: Headache and dizziness; blurred vision due to nebula, optic atrophy and night blindness.

This herb is used in formulas to treat high blood pressure, eye redness with light sensitivity, blurred vision, glaucoma, cataracts, headaches behind eyes, and spasms (TCM: Liver imbalances with heat symptoms).

Traditional Usages and Functions:
Quells fire and causes Yang to descend; brightens eyes and causes superficial visual obstructions to recede.

Common Formulas Used In : Rehmannia and Dogwood Fruit.
Processing : Required

Cautions in Use; Do not use during pregnancy. Not useful in most cases where there are no heat symptoms.

Click to see ->:Concha Haliotidis (Shi Jue Ming) – Improves Eyesight

Resources:
http://www.acupuncture-and-chinese-medicine.com/haliotidis.html
http://www.fzrm.com/plantextracts/sea-ear_shell_extract.htm
http://www.tcmtreatment.com/herbs/0-shijueming.htm

http://www.enwei.com.cn/b2b_en/page.asp?title=shijueming

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‘Thyroid Drug Can Hurt Liver, Kill Kids’

A pill used for thyroid disease can cause fatal liver failure in children and should no longer be used to treat them, two doctors warn. Doctors  usually first try either propylthiouracil or methimazole to treat children with Graves’ disease, the most common cause of an overactive thyroid. Other treatments are surgery and radioactive iodine.

……..

But over the past 60 years, reports have popped up linking the use of propylthiouracil in children to liver failure, sometimes fatal or requiring a liver transplant.

Propylthiouracil, or PTU, is also a primary treatment for adults with Graves’ disease, but there appear to be fewer liver complications in adults, according to Donald R Mattison of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.

Mattison and Dr Scott A Rivkees of Yale University School of Medicine noticed the problem in children and decided to do some research and publicize the issue to doctors.

They estimate that five to 10 children die each year from complications of the drug, based on reports to the Food and Drug Administration and others, Mattison said in an interview.

In a letter published in Thursday’s New England Journal of Medicine, the doctors urged colleagues not to give propylthiouracil as an initial treatment to children for an overactive thyroid.

Mattison said there are no guidelines for treating Graves’ disease in children, and most doctors don’t know of this danger. Only about 8,000 youngsters have the disease and paediatricians might see only one or two cases in their career.

Methimazole, sold both as a generic and under the brand name Tapazole, also can hurt the liver, but the damage is less severe and causes obvious symptoms. The damage is reversible once use of the drug stops, unlike with propylthiouracil.

Mattison noted methimazole is becoming more popular because it can be taken just once a day, versus two or three times a day for PTU.

Parents should contact their doctor before taking a child off either treatment, he said.

Sources: The Times Of India

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Our Body Clock Regulates Our Metabolism

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Scientists have discovered that your circadian rhythms regulate the energy levels in your cells. In addition, the proteins involved with circadian rhythms and metabolism are intrinsically linked and dependent upon each other. This finding has far-reaching implications, which could include new ways to treat cancer, diabetes, obesity and a host of related diseases.

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24-hour circadian rhythms govern fundamental physiological functions in almost all organisms. These circadian clocks are the essential time-tracking systems in your body. Disruption of these rhythms can profoundly influence human health.

In a new study, researchers showed that an enzyme protein which is an essential molecular gear of the circadian machinery interacts with a protein that senses cell energy levels and modulates aging and metabolism.

This suggests that proper sleep and diet may help maintain or rebuild the balance between your circadian clock and your metabolism, and could also help explain why lack of rest or disruption of normal sleep patterns can increase hunger, leading to obesity-related illnesses and accelerated aging.

Sources: Science Daily March 19, 2009

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Omega-3 Fatty Acids Help Cancer Patients

A randomised controlled trial has shown that omega-3 fatty acids given as part of an oral nutritional supplement helps preserve muscle  mass in patients undergoing surgery for oesopahageal cancer, a procedure normally associated with significant weight loss and quality of life issues.

Omega 3 fats are essential fats found naturally in oily fish, with highest concentrations in salmon, herring, mackerel, and sardines. Considering their health-related benefits, food manufacturers have started to add them to foods like yogurt, milk, juice, eggs, and infant formula also.

Professor John V Reynolds of Trinity College Dublin and Dr Aoife Ryan of St James’ Hospital, the pair who led the trial, said that previous studies have had already shown that nutritional supplements containing one form of omega 3 fat, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), significantly reduced weight loss among inoperable cancer patients.

They revealed that that finding made them hypothesise that a nutritional supplement rich in calories and a high dose of EPA could stem the debilitating weight loss seen in patients following oesophageal surgery.

The researchers said that they chose to study patients undergoing surgery for oesophageal cancer because it is considered to be one of the most stressful and serious operations a patient can undergo.

“An increasing number of patients are treated with chemotherapy alone or in combination with radiation therapy before they undergo surgery. The surgery is a serious operation lasting several hours and can take weeks to recover from surgery and up to six months to recover pre-illness quality of life. Weight loss is extremely common both before and especially after this type of surgery, and any approach that can preserve weight, in particular muscle weight and strength, may represent a real advance,” they said.

During the study, patients awaiting oesophagectomy surgery were randomly assigned to treatment and control groups. While both groups received a 240ml nutritional supplement twice daily starting five days before surgery, patients in the treatment group received an enriched formula with omega 3.

Immediately following surgery, the supplement was given through a feeding tube for 14 days while patients recovered in hospital. Once patients could resume oral feeding, they continued drinking the supplement until 21 days post surgery.

The researchers observed that the patients given the standard feed without omega 3 suffered clinically severe weight loss post surgery, while those in the omega 3 group patients maintained all aspects of their body composition. Professor John Reynolds said: “Omega 3 enriched nutrition appears to prevent loss of muscle mass by reducing the amount of inflammatory markers in the blood – this means the metabolism is not as stressed as it usually is post surgery. We also saw that the omega 3 group was less likely to have a fever in the first week post surgery which points to the ability of omega 3 to suppress inflammation. Looking at their blood tests omega 3 fed patients had much lower ‘inflammatory compounds’ circulating in their blood which points to the ability of omega 3 to reduce inflammation.”

The researchers said that using specialised nutritional feeds with a highly purified form of EPA enabled them to administer a dose of omega 3 that was much higher than that typically found in food. Professor John Reynolds said: “This study has provided an interesting insight into how nutritional therapy can positively impact on the major stress of cancer surgery. More studies need to be done, in particular to address whether such approaches lead to more rapid recovery of quality of life, reduce complications, and improve outcomes.”

He expressed his belief that similar benefits from Omega 3 enriched nutrition might accrue to patients needing complex surgical care for non-cancer problems, for instance liver transplantation or major cardiac surgery.

Sources: The Times Of India

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Coffee Can Lower Stroke Risk for Women

Women who enjoy drinking coffee may be lowering their risk of suffering a stroke, a new study suggests.
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Women who drank five to seven cups of coffee a week were 12% less likely to have a stroke than were those who downed just one cup a month, the study among 83,000 American women revealed.

The survey was carried out over a 24-year period by Harvard Medical School and Harvard School of Public Health in Boston and the findings published in the March issue of the journal Circulation.

According to the German experts on stroke prevention in Berlin, the benefit does not appear to come from caffeine. Those who drank tea and other caffeinated drinks did not experience the same reduction in stroke risk, said Martin Grond of the German Stroke Society.

It seems the positive health effects of coffee-drinking come from antioxidants in the beverage which lower inflammation and improve blood vessel function.

Taking into consideration factors such as cigarette and alcohol consumption, researchers found that healthy women who drank two to three cups of normal caffeinated coffee a day had, on average, a 19% lower risk for any kind of stroke than did women who drank less than one cup a month. Drinking four or more cups a day lowered the risk by 20%.

At the same time, the study confirmed that the beneficial effects of coffee only apply to otherwise healthy people. Those with complaints such insomnia, anxiety, high blood pressure and cardiac complications should be aware that coffee consumption was likely to worsen their condition, said Grond.

Sources: The Times Of India

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Anoscopy

Definition:
An anoscopy is a procedure that enables a physician to view the anus, anal canal, and lower rectum using a speculum.A tube called an anoscope is used to look at the inside of your anus and rectum. Doctors use anoscopy to diagnose hemorrhoids, anal fissures (tears in the lining of the anus), and some cancers.

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How the test is performed:
First, the health care provider performs a digital rectal exam by inserting a lubricated, gloved finger into the rectum to determine if anything will block the insertion of the scope.

He or she then inserts a lubricated metal or plastic anoscope a few inches into the rectum. This enlarges the rectum to allow the health care provider to view the entire anal canal using a light. A specimen for biopsy can be taken if needed. As the scope is slowly removed, the lining of the anal canal is carefully inspected.

How to prepare for the test:
Before the test, you might want to empty your bladder or have a bowel movement to make yourself more comfortable.
You will be asked to defecate to clear your rectum of stool before the procedure. A laxative, enema, or other preparation may be administered to help clear your rectum.

Infants and children:
A child’s age and experience determine which steps are appropriate to help prepare him or her for this procedure. For specific recommendations, refer to the following topics:

*Infant test or procedure preparation (birth to 1 year)
*Toddler test or procedure preparation (1 to 3 years)
*Preschooler test or procedure preparation (3 to 6 years)
*Schoolage test or procedure preparation (6 to 12 years)
*Adolescent test or procedure preparation (12 to 18 years)

What happens when the test is performed?
This test is usually done in a doctor’s office. You need to remove your underwear. Depending on what the doctor prefers, you either lie on your side on top of an examining table, with your knees bent up to your chest, or bend forward over the table. The anoscope is 3 to 4 inches long and the width of an average-to-large bowel movement. The doctor coats the anoscope with a lubricant and then gently pushes it into your anus and rectum. The doctor may ask you to “bear down” or push as if you were going to have a bowel movement, and then relax. This helps the doctor insert the anoscope more easily and identify any bulges along the lining of the rectum.

By shining a light into this tube, your doctor has a clear view of the lining of your lower rectum and anus. When the test is finished, the anoscope then is pulled out slowly.

You will feel pressure during the examination, and the anoscope will make you feel as if you are about to have a bowel movement. Do not be alarmed by this sensation; it is normal. Most patients do not feel pain from anoscopy.

How the test will feel:
There will be some pressure during the procedure, and you may feel the need to defecate. If biopsies are taken, you may feel a pinch.

Risk Factors:
There are no significant risks from anoscopy. Sometimes, especially if you have hemorrhoids, you may have a small amount of bleeding after the anoscope is pulled out.

Must you do anything special after the test is over?
You can return to your normal activities immediately after the test.

How long is it before the result of the test is known?
Your doctor can tell you about your anoscopy exam right away.

You may click to see:->Common Anorectal Conditions:

Resources:
https://www.health.harvard.edu/fhg/diagnostics/anoscopy.shtml
http://www.healthscout.com/ency/1/003890.html

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Banish Back Pain

Most back pain can be treated without surgery……CLICK & SEE

Your spine truly is a marvel of engineering, a strong yet flexible column that supports your head and pro­tects the delicate cord carrying nerves from the brain to the rest of your body.

The spine’s complexity is also the reason back problems are so common. Eight out of 10 Americans will experience lower-back pain at some point, and back pain is the single largest cause of workers’ compensation claims. The costs—in medical treatment and time lost—add up to more than $50 billion annually.

Most back pain will ease with proper diagnosis and treatment. Experts estimate that less than 2 percent of patients with chronic back pain need surgery. That option should be used only as a last resort.

Back pain falls into two categories: acute and chronic. Acute back injuries include tears to the capsule of the discs that cushion the upper vertebrae; hernias, which affect the gelatinous center of the discs; and sprains, which stretch the ligaments connecting the vertebrae. Avoid activities that involve lifting, bending, or twisting. Gentle activities like walking can help speed healing and reduce swelling around an injury. Analgesic medications such as acetaminophen are safe for short-term use. Acute back pain almost always disappears within several weeks.

Chronic back pain is the kind that lasts longer than three months. Most cases are caused by improper alignment of the vertebrae or pelvis, which puts pressure on the nerves. This may cause stiffness or pain in the lower back or pain that radiates into the buttocks or back of the legs (sciatica).

Here are some common causes of chronic pain, and simple strategies to help.

Obesity, especially abdominal fat, which pulls the pelvis and lumbar spine forward and downward. The obvious solution: Lose weight.

Poor posture, especially during prolonged sitting, such as working at a desk or driving. To correct the problem, stay conscious of your posture. Change the way you stand, sit, or walk. You may need guidance from a physical therapist or exercise physiologist.
Degeneration of normal structures such as ligaments, discs, and bones of the spine. This is common among smokers but also can occur as a result of chronic inflammation from arthritis. If you smoke, quitting is critical for your overall health and can go far in preventing long-term degeneration of the back.
For many conditions, it’s helpful to do daily back exercises that stretch key muscles and strengthen the abdominal core.

You may click to see->Natural Cure For Back Pain

Written by Dr. Mark Liponis, PARADE Magazine

Disclaimer: This information is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advise or help. It is always best to consult with a Physician about serious health concerns. This information is in no way intended to diagnose or prescribe remedies.This is purely for educational purpose.

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Gelatinum Asini

yin yang

yin yang (Photo credit: Chris Blakeley)

Latin Plant Name:  Gelatinum Asini
Pinyin Mandarin Name: E Jiao
Pin Yin: ejiao-
Common English Name: Gelatin from the skin of an Ass
Common name:
ass hide glue
Other names: A Jiao, Yuan E Jiao, Chen E Jiao, Lu Pi Jiao, Lu E Jiao, Dong E Jiao, Ah Jao
Botanical family: (animal) Equidae
Botanical name: Equs asinus L.
Part of Plant Used: Prepared gelatin
Primary action: Supplement Blood
Secondary actions: Stop Bleeding; Supplement Yin
Temperature: neutral
Nature: Neutral
Taste: Sweet
Entering Channel: Lu, Lv, Kd

Meridians Entered: Lungs, Liver, Kidneys
YOU MAY CLICK TO SEE..>…..(01)..(1)…….(2).…..
Common Usages : This herb is used to stop chronic bleeding and enhance recovery from excessive bleeding. It is most often used in formulas that treat anemia, tuberculosis, dry cough with bloody sputum, bleeding fibroids, and endometriosis; also used to raise blood platelet count, and to stop bleeding and spotting during pregnancy (TCM: builds Lung Yin and nourishes Blood).

Nourishes Blood; used especially for dizziness, palpitations, and dry skin.
Stops bleeding of all types, especially in conditions of chronic wasting illnesses and Vacuity of Yin or Blood.
Supplements Yin and moistens Lungs, especially useful for the aftermath of feverish illness.

Traditional Usages and Functions
: Nourishes Blood; nourishes Blood and stops bleeding; nourishes Yin and moistens Lungs.

Common Formulas Used In : Leonuris and Achyranthes.

Processing Required : Can be used after processing

Remarks
Dissolve the gelatin in warm water before adding it to tea, or use alone after straining.

Cautions in Use
Do not use this herb where there is an exterior excess condition. Use with caution if there is deficent Spleen and/or Stomach.

You may click to see:->
The Official MartinZ Blog :

Resources:
http://www.acupuncture-and-chinese-medicine.com/gelatinum-asini.html
http://www.chineseherbacademy.org/databases/hb-db/asini.html
http://www.tcmassistant.com/herbs/e-jiao.html

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Oyster Shell

 

Latin Plant Name: Concha Ostreae

Pinyin Mandarin Name: Mu Li

Common English Name:  Oyster Shell

Parts Used : Whole shell (crushed)

Nature: Cool

Taste :Salty, astringent

Click for more knowledge  on Oyster

CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES

Meridians Entered: Liver, Kidneys

Common Usages:   Oyster shell is used in formulas to treat irritability with associated symptoms of palpitations, insomnia, and anxiety, and sometimes ringing in the ears, blurred vision, and flushed face (TCM: Yin deficiency); also used to treat night sweats, nocturnal emissions, heartburn, and goiter.

Traditional Usages and Functions:  Settles and calms Spirit; benefits Yin and restrains floating Yang; prevents leakage of fluids; softens hardness and dissipates nodules; absorbs acidity and alleviates pain.

Common Formulas Used InBupleurum and Dragon Bone; Tang Gui and Indigo.

Processing Required : Must be used after proper processing

Cautions in Use :  Do not use where there is high fever with no sweatin
You may click to see:->

Oyster Shell Calcium 500 +D – Bone Health

Calcium Oyster Shell
Calcium Oyster Shell Oral

Oyster Shell Calcium

Resources:
http://www.acupuncture-and-chinese-medicine.com/oyster-shell.html