Saturated Fat is NOT the Cause of Heart Disease

The saturated fat found mainly in meat and dairy products has been regularly vilified by physicians and the media, but a new analysis of published studies finds no clear link between people’s intake of saturated fat and their risk of developing heart disease.

CLICK & SEE

In the new analysis, which combined the results of 21 previous studies, researchers found no clear evidence that higher saturated fat intakes led to higher risks of heart disease or stroke.

A number of studies have linked the so-called Western diet to greater heart disease risks; that diet pattern is defined as one high in red meats and saturated fats — but it is also high in sweets and other refined carbohydrates like white bread.

Resources:
Reuters February 4, 2010
American Journal of Clinical Nutrition January 13, 2010 [Epub ahead of print]
American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 91: 502-509; January 20, 2010

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Adonis Amurensis

Botanical Name : Adonis amurensis
Family  : Ranunculaceae
Common Names: Amur Adonis
Genus : Adonis

Habitat : E. Asia – Siberia to China, Japan, Manchuria and Korea.  Found in mountains. Forests and grassy slopes in E Heilongjiang, Jilin and Liaoning provinces, China, Woodland Garden; Dappled Shade; Cultivated Beds;


Description:

Perennials Herbs,growing to 0.3m by 0.3m.
It is hardy to zone 3. It is in flower from February to March, and the seeds ripen from April to May. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees, flies, beetles. The plant is self-fertile.

......
Foliage: “The stems are branched, each stem branch bearing triangular, 3-6” long leaves which are cut into 3 sections to the base. At the base of each petiole are leafy stipules. Each flower has 20-50 petals slightly longer than the sepals and appears just before the leaves fully emerge. The leaves are deep red and unfurled as the flowers begin to open.”

Flowers: Colors: Yellow
Season(s): Spring   “This species flowers as early as February in southern gardens and progressively later further north. The 2″ wide flowers are usually buttercup-yellow but may occasionally be white, rose, or have red stripes. Each flower has 20-50 petals slightly longer than the sepals and appears just before the leaves fully emerge. If the weather remains cool when flowers open, they persist for up to 6 weeks, less if hot weather comes along.”

The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and requires well-drained soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It requires moist soil.

Cultivation:
Grows well in ordinary garden soil and in the light shade of shrubs. Prefers a sunny position and a humus-rich soil. Prefers a moist well-drained soil in sun or semi-shade. A very ornamental plant. A greedy plant inhibiting the growth of nearby plants, especially legumes. Plants take about 4 years from seed to flowering.

Propagation:
Seed – best sown in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe or else it can be slow to germinate. Sow the seed in partial shade in rich soil in September or March. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow the plants on for their first winter in a cold frame. Plant out in late spring or early summer. Division in early spring or in autumn. The divisions can be difficult to establish, so it is probably best to pot them up first and keep them in a cold frame or greenhouse until they are growing away actively.

Medicinal Actions & Uses
Cardiotonic; Diuretic; Sedative.

The root is cardiotonic. The whole plant is an effective diuretic and tranquilliser.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein by us is intended for educational purposes only.Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Known Hazards :  Although no specific mention of toxicity has been seen for this plant, it belongs to a genus that contains a number of poisonous plants so the following remarks are likely to apply to this species – a toxic principle is present in very small quantities in the plant. It is poorly absorbed so poisoning is unlikely.

Resourcs:
http://www.pfaf.org/database/plants.php?Adonis+amurensis
http://navigator.gardenpilot.com/Tag.aspx?pl=26274&pr=4
http://iowagarden.blogspot.com/2007/03/hello-sunshine-adonis-amurensis.html

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Summer Pheasant’s Eye (Adonis aestivalis)

Botanical Name : Adonis aestivalis
Family  : Ranunculaceae
Common Name :Summer pheasant’s-eye
Vernacular names:-
Deutsch: Sommer-Adonisröschen
English: Summer pheasant’s eye
Français: Adonis d’été
Lietuvi?: Vasarinis adonis
Nederlands: Zomeradonis
Polski: Mi?ek letni
Svenska: Sommaradonis
Türkçe: Kandamlas?

Genus : Adonis
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Ranunculales
Species: A. aestivalis

Habitat : It is native to Europe but has been introduced elsewhere, such as the western and eastern parts of the United States S. Europe, N. Africa.  Cornfields, usually on calcareous soils. Roadsides, fields, sagebrush scrub, and open pine or aspen forests in valleys and foothills; 1200-2400 m; introduced;


Description:

Plants annual. Stems 10–20 cm tall, branched or unbranched, basally sparsely pubescent. Leaves long petiolate, clustered apically on stem; leaf blade ca. 3.5 cm, increasing in size upward on stem to 6 cm, glabrous or abaxially sparsely pubescent; upper stem leaves finely 2 or 3 × pinnately divided; ultimate segments linear to lanceolate-linear, 0.4–0.8 mm wide. Sepals 5, narrowly rhombic to narrowly ovate, membranous. Petals orange. Ovary narrowly ovoid with a dorsal ridge, apically narrowed. Achenes ovoid, ca. 3.5 mm, reticulate-veined, with conspicuous dorsal and ventral ridges. Fl. Jun.
......

It is a medicinal and ornamental plant.
It is hardy to zone 6. It is in flower in June, and the seeds ripen in July.   The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees, flies, beetles. The plant is self-fertile.

The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and requires well-drained soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It requires moist soil.

Cultivation:
Grows well in ordinary garden soil. Prefers a moist well-drained soil in sun or semi-shade. A greedy plant inhibiting the growth of nearby plants, especially legumes. Very closely related to A. annua.

Propagation:-

Seed – best sown in situ as soon as it is ripe in the autumn, though it can also be sown in situ in the spring.


Medicinal Actions &  Uses

Cardiotonic; Diuretic; Laxative; Lithontripic.
The plant is a cardiotonic, diuretic and stimulant. Some caution is advised in the use of this remedy, see the notes above on toxicity. The flowers are considered to be diuretic, laxative and lithontripic.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein by us is intended for educational purposes only.Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Known Hazards : A toxic principle is present in very small quantities in the plant . It is poorly absorbed so poisoning is unlikely. The plant is poisonous to horses.You may click to see & read:

Resources:
http://www.pfaf.org/database/plants.php?Adonis+aestivalis
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adonis_aestivalis
http://species.wikimedia.org/wiki/Adonis_aestivalis
http://www.eol.org/pages/594858
http://calphotos.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/img_query?rel-taxon=contains&where-taxon=Adonis+aestivalis

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Foods May Contribute to Infertility

Millions of people have celiac disease, but most don’t know they have it, in part because symptoms can be so varied. It is an often overlooked digestive disorder that causes damage to the small intestine when gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley and rye, is eaten.
………….

People sensitive to the gluten in bread, pasta and other foods may face fertility problems.

Infertility seems to be more common in women with untreated celiac disease. Other gynecological and obstetrical problems may also be more common, including miscarriages and preterm births.

For men, problems can include abnormal sperm — such as lower sperm numbers, altered shape, and reduced function. Men with untreated celiac disease may also have lower testosterone levels.

The good news is that with proper treatment with a gluten-free diet and correction of nutritional deficiencies, the prognosis for future pregnancies is much improved.

Source: New York Times February 3, 2010

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Adina Rubella

 

 Botanical Name:Adina rubella
Family:    Rubiaceae
Subfamily:Cinchonoideae
Tribe:    Naucleeae
Genus:    Adina
Kingdom:    Plantae
Clade:    Angiosperms
Clade:    Eudicots
Clade:    Asterids
Order:    Gentianales

Common Name: Chinese buttonbush, glossy adina

Habitat:Native to China, E. Asia – China  &  Japan.  It grows on the edges of streams, ditches and ponds.Woodland Garden; Sunny Edge; Situate Chinese buttonbush in full sun to partial shade and moist, well-drained soil.


Description:

.This 6- to 8-foot-tall, deciduous shrub is grown for its glossy leaves and spiky, round, creamy-white flowers that appear in early to midsummer. It has smaller leaves and similar but smaller ball-like flowers in early summer.  The flowers could give it the name “Sputnik Shrub”.   It may grow to 10 feet in warmer climates and is soil and moisture tolerant.The flowers give way to small brown fruit clusters several weeks later. Chinese buttonbush is closely related to the North American buttonbush (Cephalanthus occidentalis), but is finer-textured and more compact.

CLICK &  SEE

The small lustrous, dark green leaf has reddish margins.  Small ½ inch white, mildly fragrant flowers, appear in June-July and persist into October, giving the plant the appearance of being covered in small white buttons.  Very pleasing.  This plant is very adaptable to most planting sites, except those with consistently wet soils.   Good choice for summer flowering in shady locations. Propagated from rooted stem cuttings.

Click & see the pictures

An annual plant. Radical leaves are 10-14cm long, pinnate, and parted. Lobes are wide, having thin hairs on the edge, shaped in rosette. Cauline leaves have narrower lobes and upper part of them are almost filiform. Fruits are clavate, 5-10cm long, 1.2mm wide, without hair, and fruit stalks are 6-8mm long. Flowers bloom in May-June, raceme on the edge of boughs. Flowers are light yellow, 8mm diameter, cruciate. Flowers have 4 calyxes, 2 of which on the outer part have short horn-shaped projections. Petals are 6-9? long. 4 of the stamens are long and 2 are short. Stem is 20-70cm long, with or without hair.

It is hardy to zone 0. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs)

Height : 6 ft. to 10 ft.
Spread : 6 ft. to 10 ft.
Growth Pace :   Moderate Grower
Light  :   Full Sun Only;Full Sun to Part Shade;Part Shade Only
Moisture :  Medium Moisture
Maintenance :  Low
Characteristics:    Showy Flowers; Showy Seed Heads
Bloom Time  :   Summer
Flower Color :   White Flower
Uses  :   Low- Maintenance
Seasonal Interest :   Summer Interest

The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It requires moist soil.

Propagation: Root cuttings in summer, protect through winter, and plant out the following spring.

Medicinal Actions & Uses
Astringent, carminative, haemostatic, stimulates the circulation

Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
http://www.pfaf.org/database/plants.php?Adina+rubella
http://www.finegardening.com/plantguide/adina-rubella-chinese-buttonbush.aspx
http://www.flowerpictures.net/flower_database/a_flowers/adina.html
http://www.smallplants.com/catalog_a-b.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adina_(plant)

http://www.woodlanders.net/index.cfm?fuseaction=plants.plantDetail&plant_id=267

Enhanced by Zemanta

Crohn’s Disease

Definition:-
Crohn’s disease is an inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). It causes inflammation of the lining of your digestive tract, which can lead to abdominal pain, severe diarrhea and even malnutrition.

The inflammation caused by Crohn’s disease often spreads deep into the layers of affected bowel tissue. Like ulcerative colitis, another common IBD, Crohn’s disease can be both painful and debilitating and sometimes may lead to life-threatening complications.
click & see the pictures
It  may affect any part of the gastrointestinal tract from anus to mouth, causing a wide variety of symptoms. It primarily causes abdominal pain, diarrhea (which may be bloody), vomiting, or weight loss, but may also cause complications outside of the gastrointestinal tract such as skin rashes, arthritis and inflammation of the eye.

Crohn’s disease is an autoimmune disease, in which the body’s immune system attacks the gastrointestinal tract, causing inflammation; it is classified as a type of inflammatory bowel disease. There has been evidence of a genetic link to Crohn’s disease, putting individuals with siblings afflicted with the disease at higher risk. It is understood to have a large environmental component as evidenced by the higher number of cases in western industrialized nations. Males and females are equally affected. Smokers are three times more likely to develop Crohn’s disease. Crohn’s disease affects between 400,000 and 600,000 people in North America. Prevalence estimates for Northern Europe have ranged from 27–48 per 100,000. Crohn’s disease tends to present initially in the teens and twenties, with another peak incidence in the fifties to seventies, although the disease can occur at any age.

While there’s no known medical cure for Crohn’s disease, therapies can greatly reduce the signs and symptoms of Crohn’s disease and even bring about long-term remission. With these therapies, many people with Crohn’s disease are able to function well.

Symptoms :-
Many people with Crohn’s disease have symptoms for years prior to the diagnosis. The usual onset is between 15 and 30 years of age but can occur at any age. Because of the ‘patchy’ nature of the gastrointestinal disease and the depth of tissue involvement, initial symptoms can be more vague than with ulcerative colitis. People with Crohn’s disease will go through periods of flare-ups and remission.

Crohn’s disease can range from mild to severe and may develop gradually or come on suddenly, without warning. You may also have periods of time when you have no signs or symptoms (remission). When the disease is active, signs and symptoms may include:

#Diarrhea. The inflammation that occurs in Crohn’s disease causes cells in the affected areas of your intestine to secrete large amounts of water and salt. Because the colon can’t completely absorb this excess fluid, you develop diarrhea. Intensified intestinal cramping also can contribute to loose stools. Diarrhea is the most common problem for people with Crohn’s.

#Abdominal pain and cramping. Inflammation and ulceration may cause the walls of portions of your bowel to swell and eventually thicken with scar tissue. This affects the normal movement of contents through your digestive tract and may lead to pain and cramping. Mild Crohn’s disease usually causes slight to moderate intestinal discomfort, but in more-serious cases, the pain may be severe and include nausea and vomiting.

#Blood in your stool. Food moving through your digestive tract may cause inflamed tissue to bleed, or your bowel may also bleed on its own. You might notice bright red blood in the toilet bowl or darker blood mixed with your stool. You can also have bleeding you don’t see (occult blood)…..click & see

Endoscopy image of colon showing serpiginous ulcer

#Ulcers. Crohn’s disease can cause small sores on the surface of the intestine that eventually become large ulcers that penetrate deep into — and sometimes through — the intestinal walls. You may also have ulcers in your mouth similar to canker sores.

#Reduced appetite and weight loss. Abdominal pain and cramping and the inflammatory reaction in the wall of your bowel can affect both your appetite and your ability to digest and absorb food.
Erythema nodosum due to CD….…click & see

Other signs and symptoms :-
People with severe Crohn’s disease may also experience:

#Fever
#Fatigue
#Arthritis
#Eye inflammation
#Skin disorders
#Inflammation of the liver or bile ducts
#Delayed growth or sexual development, in children

When to see a doctor :-
See your doctor if you have persistent changes in your bowel habits or if you have any of the signs and symptoms of Crohn’s disease, such as:

#Abdominal pain
#Blood in your stool
#Ongoing bouts of diarrhea that don’t respond to over-the-counter (OTC) medications
#Unexplained fever lasting more than a day or two.

Cause:-
Although the exact cause of Crohn’s disease is still unknown.  Previously, diet and stress were suspect, but now doctors know that although these factors may aggravate existing Crohn’s disease, they don’t cause it. A combination of environmental factors and genetic predisposition seems cause the disease. The genetic risk factors have now more or less been comprehensively elucidated, making Crohn’s disease the first genetically complex disease of which the genetic background has been resolved. The relative risks of contracting the disease when one has a mutation in one of the risk genes, however, are actually very low (approximately 1:200). Broadly speaking, the genetic data indicate that innate immune systems in patients with Crohn’s disease malfunction, and direct assessment of patient immunity confirms this notion. This had led to the notion that Crohn’s disease should be viewed as innate immune deficiency, chronic inflammation being caused by adaptive immunity trying to compensate for the reduced function of the innate immune system.Now, researchers believe that a number of factors, such as heredity and a malfunctioning immune system, play a role in the development of Crohn’s disease.

#Immune system. It’s possible that a virus or bacterium may cause Crohn’s disease. When your immune system tries to fight off the invading microorganism, the digestive tract becomes inflamed. Currently, many investigators believe that some people with the disease develop it because of an abnormal immune response to bacteria that normally live in the intestine.

#Heredity. Mutations in a gene called NOD2 tend to occur frequently in people with Crohn’s disease and seem to be associated with a higher likelihood of needing surgery for the disease. Scientists continue to search for other genetic mutations that might play a role in Crohn’s.

Complications:
Crohn’s disease can lead to several mechanical complications within the intestines, including obstruction, fistulae, and abscesses. Obstruction typically occurs from strictures or adhesions which narrow the lumen, blocking the passage of the intestinal contents. Fistulae can develop between two loops of bowel, between the bowel and bladder, between the bowel and vagina, and between the bowel and skin. Abscesses are walled off collections of infection, which can occur in the abdomen or in the perianal area in Crohn’s disease sufferers.

Crohn’s disease also increases the risk of cancer in the area of inflammation. For example, individuals with Crohn’s disease involving the small bowel are at higher risk for small intestinal cancer. Similarly, people with Crohn’s colitis have a relative risk of 5.6 for developing colon cancer.[26] Screening for colon cancer with colonoscopy is recommended for anyone who has had Crohn’s colitis for at least eight years. Some studies suggest that there is a role for chemoprotection in the prevention of colorectal cancer in Crohn’s involving the colon; two agents have been suggested, folate and mesalamine preparations.

Individuals with Crohn’s disease are at risk of malnutrition for many reasons, including decreased food intake and malabsorption. The risk increases following resection of the small bowel. Such individuals may require oral supplements to increase their caloric intake, or in severe cases, total parenteral nutrition (TPN). Most people with moderate or severe Crohn’s disease are referred to a dietitian for assistance in nutrition.

Crohn’s disease can cause significant complications including bowel obstruction, abscesses, free perforation and hemorrhage.

Crohn’s disease can be problematic during pregnancy, and some medications can cause adverse outcomes for the fetus or mother. Consultation with an obstetrician and gastroenterologist about Crohn’s disease and all medications allows preventative measures to be taken. In some cases, remission can occur during pregnancy. Certain medications can also impact sperm count or may otherwise adversely affect a man’s ability to conceive.

Risk factors:-
Risk factors for Crohn’s disease may include:

#Age. Crohn’s disease can occur at any age, but you’re likely to develop the condition when you’re young. Most people are diagnosed with Crohn’s between the ages of 20 and 30.

#Ethnicity. Although whites have the highest risk of the disease, it can affect any ethnic group. If you’re of Ashkenazi Jewish descent, your risk is even higher.

#Family history. You’re at higher risk if you have a close relative, such as a parent, sibling or child, with the disease. As many as 1 in 5 people with Crohn’s disease has a family member with the disease.

#Cigarette smoking. Cigarette smoking is the most important controllable risk factor for developing Crohn’s disease. Smoking also leads to more severe disease and a greater risk of surgery. If you smoke, stop. Discuss this with your doctor and get help. There are many smoking-cessation programs available if you are unable to quit on your own.

#Where you live. If you live in an urban area or in an industrialized country, you’re more likely to develop Crohn’s disease. Because Crohn’s disease occurs more often among people living in cities and industrial nations, it may be that environmental factors, including a diet high in fat or refined foods, play a role in Crohn’s disease. People living in northern climates also seem to have a greater risk of the disease.

#Isotretinoin (Accutane) use. Isotretinoin (Accutane) is a powerful medication sometimes used to treat scarring cystic acne or acne that doesn’t respond to other treatments. Although cause and effect hasn’t been proved, studies have reported the development of inflammatory bowel disease with isotretinoin use.

#Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Although these medications — ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, others), naproxen (Aleve), diclofenac (Cataflam, Voltaren), piroxicam (Feldene), and others — haven’t been shown to cause Crohn’s disease, they can cause similar signs and symptoms. Additionally, theses medications can make existing Crohn’s disease worse.

Diagnosis:-
The diagnosis of Crohn’s disease can sometimes be challenging, and a number of tests are often required to assist the physician in making the diagnosis. Even with a full battery of tests it may not be possible to diagnose Crohn’s with complete certainty; a colonoscopy is approximately 70% effective in diagnosing the disease with further tests being less effective. Disease in the small bowel is particularly difficult to diagnose as a traditional colonoscopy only allows access to the colon and lower portions of the small intestines; introduction of the capsule endoscopy aids in endoscopic .

Your doctor will likely diagnose Crohn’s disease only after ruling out other possible causes for your signs and symptoms, including irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), diverticulitis and colon cancer. To help confirm a diagnosis of Crohn’s disease, you may have one or more of the following tests and procedures:

#Blood tests. Your doctor may suggest blood tests to check for anemia — a condition in which there aren’t enough red blood cells to carry adequate oxygen to your tissues — or to check for signs of infection. Two tests that look for the presence of certain antibodies can sometimes help diagnose which type of inflammatory bowel disease you have, but not everyone with Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis has these antibodies. While your doctor may order these tests, a positive finding doesn’t mean you have Crohn’s disease and a negative finding doesn’t mean that you’re free of the disease.

#Fecal occult blood test (FOBT). You may need to provide a stool sample so that your doctor can test for blood in your stool.

#Colonoscopy. This test allows your doctor to view your entire colon using a thin, flexible, lighted tube with an attached camera. During the procedure, your doctor can also take small samples of tissue (biopsy) for laboratory analysis, which may help confirm a diagnosis. Some people have clusters of inflammatory cells called granulomas, which help confirm the diagnosis of Crohn’s disease because granulomas don’t occur with ulcerative colitis. In the majority of people with Crohn’s, granulomas aren’t present and diagnosis is made through biopsy and the location of the disease. Risks of colonoscopy include perforation of the colon wall and bleeding.

#Flexible sigmoidoscopy. In this procedure, your doctor uses a slender, flexible, lighted tube to examine the sigmoid, the last section of your colon.

#Barium enema. This diagnostic test allows your doctor to evaluate your large intestine with an X-ray. Before the test, your receive an enema with a contrast dye containing barium. Sometimes, air also is added. The barium dye coats the lining of the bowel, creating a silhouette of your rectum, colon and a portion of your small intestine that’s visible on an X-ray.

#Small bowel imaging. This test looks at the part of the small bowel that can’t be seen by colonoscopy. After you drink a solution containing barium, X-ray, CT or MRI images are taken of your small intestine. The test can help locate areas of narrowing or inflammation in the small bowel that are seen in Crohn’s disease. The test can also help your doctor determine which type of inflammatory bowel disease you have.

#Computerized tomography (CT). Sometimes you may have a CT scan, a special X-ray technique that provides more detail than a standard X-ray does. This test looks at the entire bowel as well as at tissues outside the bowel that can’t be seen with other tests. Your doctor may order this scan to better understand the location and extent of your disease or to check for complications such as a partial blockages, abscesses or fistulas. Although not invasive, a CT scan exposes you to more radiation than a conventional X-ray does.

#Capsule endoscopy.
If you have signs and symptoms that suggest Crohn’s disease but other diagnostic tests are negative, your doctor may perform capsule endoscopy. For this test you swallow a capsule that has a camera in it. The camera takes pictures, which are transmitted to a computer that you wear on your belt. The images are then downloaded, displayed on a monitor and checked for signs of Crohn’s disease. Once it’s made the trip through your digestive system, the camera exits your body painlessly in your stool. Capsule endoscopy is generally very safe, but if you have a partial blockage in the bowel, there’s a slight chance the capsule may become lodged in your intestine.

Treatments:-

Modern Treatment:-
The goal of medical treatment is to reduce the inflammation that triggers your signs and symptoms. In the best cases, this may lead not only to symptom relief but also to long-term remission. Treatment for Crohn’s disease usually involves drug therapy or, in certain cases, surgery.

Doctors use several categories of drugs that control inflammation in different ways. But drugs that work well for some people may not work for others, so it may take time to find a medication that helps you. In addition, because some drugs have serious side effects, you’ll need to weigh the benefits and risks of any treatment.

Medication:-
Acute treatment uses medications to treat any infection (normally antibiotics) and to reduce inflammation (normally aminosalicylate anti-inflammatory drugs and corticosteroids). When symptoms are in remission, treatment enters maintenance with a goal of avoiding the recurrence of symptoms. Prolonged use of corticosteroids has significant side-effects; as a result they are generally not used for long-term treatment. Alternatives include aminosalicylates alone, though only a minority are able to maintain the treatment, and many require immunosuppressive drugs.[81]

Medications used to treat the symptoms of Crohn’s disease include 5-aminosalicylic acid (5-ASA) formulations, prednisone, immunomodulators such as azathioprine, mercaptopurine, methotrexate, infliximab, adalimumab[15], certolizumab  and natalizumab.[88][89] Hydrocortisone should be used in severe attacks of Crohn’s disease.[90]

Low doses of the opiate receptor antagonist Naltrexone (also Low dose naltrexone) have been found to be effective in inducing remission in 67% of patients with Crohn’s disease in a small study conducted at Pennsylvania State University. Dr. Jill Smith, Professor of Gastroenterology at Pennsylvania State University’s College of Medicine concluded that “LDN therapy appears effective and safe in subjects with active Crohn’s disease.”[91] Smith and her colleagues have since received a NIH grant and are proceeding with a definitive Phase II placebo-controlled clinical trial.

Lifestyle changes:-
Certain lifestyle changes can reduce symptoms, including dietary adjustments, proper hydration and smoking cessation. Eating small meals frequently instead of big meals may also help with a low appetite. To manage symptoms have a balanced diet with proper portion control. Fatigue can be helped with regular exercise, a healthy diet and enough sleep. A food diary may help with identifying foods that trigger symptoms. Some patients should follow a low dietary fiber diet to control symptoms especially if fiberous foods cause symptoms.[86]

Surgery:
Crohn’s cannot be cured by surgery, though it is used when partial or a full blockage of the intestine occurs. Surgery may also be required for complications such as obstructions, fistulas and/or abscesses, or if the disease does not respond to drugs. After the first surgery, Crohn’s usually shows up at the site of the resection though it can appear in other locations. After a resection, scar tissue builds up which can cause strictures. A stricture is when the intestines become too small to allow excrement to pass through easily which can lead to a blockage. After the first resection, another resection may be necessary within five years.[92] For patients with an obstruction due to a stricture, two options for treatment are strictureplasty and resection of that portion of bowel. There is no statistical significance between strictureplasty alone versus strictureplasty and resection in cases of duodenal involvement. In these cases, re-operation rates were 31% and 27%, respectively, indicating that strictureplasty is a safe and effective treatment for selected patients with duodenal involvement

Short bowel syndrome (SBS, also short gut syndrome or simply short gut) can be caused by the surgical removal of the small intestines. It usually develops if a person has had half or more of their small intestines removed.[94] Diarrhea is the main symptom of short bowel syndrome though other symptoms may include cramping, bloating and heartburn. Short bowel syndrome is treated with changes in diet, intravenous feeding, vitamin and mineral supplements and treatment with medications. Another complication following surgery for Crohn’s disease where the terminal ileum has been removed is the development of excessive watery diarrhea. This is due to an inability to reabsorb bile acids after resection of the terminal ileum.[citation needed]

In some cases of SBS, intestinal transplant surgery may be considered; though the number of transplant centres offering this procedure is quite small and it comes with a high risk due to the chance of infection and rejection of the transplanted intestine

Prospective treatments:
Researchers at University College London have questioned the wisdom of suppressing the immune system in Crohn’s, as the problem may be an under-active rather than an over-active immune system: their study found that Crohn’s patients showed an abnormally low response to an introduced infection, marked by a poor flow of blood to the wound, and the response improved when the patients were given sildenafil citrate.[34]

Recent studies using helminthic therapy or hookworms to treat Crohn’s Disease and other (non-viral) auto-immune diseases seem to yield promising results.

Complementary and alternative medicine:-
More than half of Crohn’s disease sufferers have tried complementary or alternative therapy.[97] These include diets, probiotics, fish oil and other herbal and nutritional supplements. The benefit of these medications is uncertain.

#Acupuncture is used to treat inflammatory bowel disease in China, and is being used more frequently in Western society. However, there is no evidence that acupuncture has benefits beyond the placebo effect.

#Methotrexate is a folate anti-metabolite drug which is also used for chemotherapy. It is useful in maintenance of remission for those no longer taking corticosteroids.

#Metronidazole and ciprofloxacin are antibiotics which are used to treat Crohn’s that have colonic or perianal involvement, although, in the United States, this use has not been approved by the Food and Drug Administration. They are also used for treatment of complications, including abscesses and other infections accompanying Crohn’s disease.

#Thalidomide has shown response in reversing endoscopic evidence of disease.

#Cannabis-derived drugs may be used to treat Crohn’s Disease with its anti-inflammatory properties. Cannabis-derived drugs may also help to heal the gut lining.

#Soluble Fiber has been used by some to treat symptoms.^ a b c Tungland BC, Meyer D, Nondigestible oligo- and polysaccharides (dietary fiber): their physiology and role in human health and food, Comp Rev Food Sci Food Safety, 3:73-92, 2002 (Table 3)

#Probiotics include Sacchromyces boulardii   and E. coli Nissle 1917.

#Boswellia is an ayurvedic (Indian traditional medicine) herb, used as a natural alternative to drugs. One study has found that the effectiveness of H-15 extract is not inferior to mesalazinesimilar, and suggests it that its safety makes it superior in benefit-risk evaluations.

Lifestyle and home remedies:-
Sometimes you may feel helpless when facing Crohn’s disease. But changes in your diet and lifestyle may help control your symptoms and lengthen the time between flare-ups.

Diet
There’s no firm evidence that what you eat actually causes inflammatory bowel disease. But certain foods and beverages can aggravate your signs and symptoms, especially during a flare-up in your condition. If you think there are foods that make your condition worse, try keeping a food diary to keep track of what you’re eating as well as how you feel. If you discover certain foods are causing your symptoms to flare, it’s a good idea to try eliminating those foods. Here are some suggestions that may help:

#Limit dairy products. Like many people with inflammatory bowel disease, you may find that problems, such as diarrhea, abdominal pain and gas, improve when you limit or eliminate dairy products. You may be lactose intolerant — that is, your body can’t digest the milk sugar (lactose) in dairy foods. If so, limiting dairy or using an enzyme product, such as Lactaid, will help break down lactose.

#Try low-fat foods. If you have Crohn’s disease of the small intestine, you may not be able to digest or absorb fat normally. Instead, fat passes through your intestine, making your diarrhea worse. Foods that may be especially troublesome include butter, margarine, cream sauces and fried foods.

#Experiment with fiber. For most people, high-fiber foods, such as fresh fruits and vegetables and whole grains, are the foundation of a healthy diet. But if you have inflammatory bowel disease, fiber may make diarrhea, pain and gas worse. If raw fruits and vegetables bother you, try steaming, baking or stewing them. You may also find that you can tolerate some fruits and vegetables, but not others. In general, you may have more problems with foods in the cabbage family, such as broccoli and cauliflower, and nuts, seeds, corn and popcorn. Consult your doctor prior to starting a high-fiber diet.

#Avoid problem foods. Eliminate any other foods that seem to make your signs and symptoms worse. These may include “gassy” foods such as beans, cabbage and broccoli, raw fruit juices and fruits — especially citrus fruits, spicy food, popcorn, alcohol, and foods and drinks that contain caffeine, such as chocolate and soda.

#Eat small meals. You may find you feel better eating five or six small meals a day rather than two or three larger ones.

#Drink plenty of liquids. Try to drink plenty of fluids daily. Water is best. Alcohol and beverages that contain caffeine stimulate your intestines and can make diarrhea worse, while carbonated drinks frequently produce gas.

#Consider multivitamins. Because Crohn’s disease can interfere with your ability to absorb nutrients and because your diet may be limited, multivitamin and mineral supplements are often helpful. Check with your doctor before taking any vitamins or supplements.

#Talk to a dietitian. If you begin to lose weight or your diet has become very limited, talk to a registered dietitian.
Stress :-
Although stress doesn’t cause Crohn’s disease, it can make your signs and symptoms much worse and may trigger flare-ups. Stressful events can range from minor annoyances to a move, job loss or the death of a loved one.

When you’re stressed, your normal digestive process changes. Your stomach empties more slowly and secretes more acid. Stress can also speed or slow the passage of intestinal contents. It may also cause changes in intestinal tissue itself.

Although it’s not always possible to avoid stress, you can learn ways to help manage it. Some of these include:

#Exercise. Even mild exercise can help reduce stress, relieve depression and normalize bowel function. Talk to your doctor about an exercise plan that’s right for you.

#Biofeedback. This stress-reduction technique may help you reduce muscle tension and slow your heart rate with the help of a feedback machine. You’re then taught how to produce these changes without feedback from the machine. The goal is to help you enter a relaxed state so that you can cope more easily with stress. Biofeedback is usually taught in hospitals and medical centers.

#Regular relaxation and breathing exercises. One way to cope with stress is to regularly relax. You can take classes in yoga and meditation or use books, CDs or DVDs at home.

You may click to see this article :-Banana Plantain and Broccoli Fibers for Crohn’s Disease Treatment

Prognosis:
Crohn’s disease is a chronic condition for which there is currently no cure. It is characterised by periods of improvement followed by episodes when symptoms flare up. With treatment, most people achieve a healthy height and weight, and the mortality rate for the disease is relatively low. However, Crohn’s disease is associated with an increased risk of small bowel and colorectal carcinoma, including bowel cancer.

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.

Resources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crohn’s_disease
http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/crohns-disease/DS00104

Enhanced by Zemanta

Northern Maidenhair

Boanical Name :Adiantum pedatum
Family : Polypodiaceae
Genus : Adiantum

Habitat: N. America – Alaska to Quebec and Nova Scotia, south to California and Georgia. E. Asia   Rich, deciduous woodlands, often on humus-covered talus slopes and moist lime soils, from sea level to 700 metres . Woodland Garden; Dappled Shade; Shady Edge; Ground Cover;

Description:
It is a Perennial   Fern growing to 0.45m by 0.45m at a slow rate. The slender one to two-foot fronds are typically arranged in fives or sevens, hence the secondary common name “Five-fingered fern.” An established clump has so many overlapping palmate fronds that the feature of fives is not usually obvious.
The seeds ripen from August to October.

CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES

It is among the most beautiful of all ferns, “graceful” & “delicate” being the most recurring descriptors. The shiny black stems are lined on two sides with lacy leaves, in upright to fountaining sprays.

YOU MAY CLICK TO SEE THE PICTURES
..

The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and requires well-drained soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland). It requires moist soil.It grows in USDA zones 3 through 8, not found in hotter regions. It spreads by underground rhizomes that over a great length of time can become a continuous groundcover. It can be divided autumn or late winter to keep it a clumping fern with only a two foot width or less.

Cultivation:
Easily grown in a cool moist shady position. Requires an abundance of moisture in the air and soil. Prefers an alkaline soil[200]. Requires an acid soil according to another report. A very ornamental plan, it does not always succeed outdoors in Britain[1]. It probably prefers to be covered in snow overwinter – could a mulch help? This species is often divided into three separate species by botanists – the type species is found in eastern N. America, A. aleuticum is found in western N. America and a third species is found in eastern Asia. Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer[233]. Plants have a slowly-increasing rootstock.

Propagation:
Spores – best sown as soon as ripe on the surface of a humus-rich sterilized soil. Keep the compost moist, preferably by putting a plastic bag over the pot. Pot on small clumps of plantlets as soon as they are large enough to handle and keep them humid until they are well established. Do not plant outside until the ferns are at least 2 years old and then only in a very well sheltered position. Division in spring or autumn.

Medicinal Actions &  Different  Uses
Antirheumatic; Astringent; Demulcent; Emmenagogue; Expectorant; Febrifuge; Haemostatic; Pectoral; Tonic.

The whole plant is considered to be antirheumatic, astringent, demulcent, emmenagogue, expectorant, febrifuge, haemostatic, pectoral and tonic. A tea or syrup is used in the treatment of nasal congestion, asthma, sore throats etc. A decoction of the root was massaged into rheumatic joints. The N. American Indians chewed the fronds and then applied them to wounds to stop bleeding. A strong infusion of the whole plant was has been used as an emetic in the treatment of ague and fevers. This plant was highly valued as a medicinal plant in the 19th century and merits scientific investigation.

The stipe of the plant is used as an ornament in basketry. The leaves can be used as a lining for carrying or storing fruits in baskets and on racks. The plant is used as a hair conditioner. The stems have been used as a hair wash to make the hair shiny. Plants can be used for ground cover when planted about 30cm apart either way, they form a slowly spreading clump.

Maidenhair fern is the source of a pleasantly aromatic volatile oil long used as a rinse or shampoo that rendered black hair very shiny, hence the name Maidenhair.

The same extracts have been peddled by herbalists to cure asthma, the flu, or as a general tonic which, for so long as you take it, will prevent you from catching whichever are the illnesses you happen not to get, but apparently useless for whichever ailments you do get.

Perhaps one out of fifty herbal remedies have authentic medicinal values, & it’s just too damned bad that herbalists are not a reliable source of information for pinpointing the minority of useful herbs amidst the great masses of frauds excused as “traditional.”

As it turns out, maidenhair is not one of the useful ones. Its tripernoids & other chemical components are interesting in their own right & have undergone hundreds of laboratory studies, but authentic medicinal value has proven to be illusive.

The tough, water-repellant, shiny black stems were used by Native American peoples in basketweaving. The genus name means “repels water,” for indeed raindrops weigh down the fronds & drop onto the ground leaving the fronds nearly dry. Francois Rabelais (1490-1553), speaking of the nearly identical European species (A. capillus-veneris), said it “never takes wet or moisture, but still keeps dry, though laid at the bottom of a river as long as you please.”

Known Hazards : Although  no reports of toxicity is found  for this species, a number of ferns contain carcinogens so some caution is advisable. Many ferns also contain thiaminase, an enzyme that robs the body of its vitamin B complex. In small quantities this enzyme will do no harm to people eating an adequate diet that is rich in vitamin B, though large quantities can cause severe health problems. The enzyme is destroyed by heat or thorough drying, so cooking the plant will remove the thiaminase.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein by us is intended for educational purposes only.Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resourcs:
http://www.pfaf.org/database/plants.php?Adiantum+pedatum
http://www.plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=ADPE&photoID=adpe_008_avp.tif
http://www.paghat.com/maidenhair.html

Enhanced by Zemanta

Beetroot Juice Gives Stamina a Boost

Drinking beetroot juice boosts your stamina, concludes a new study, which adds that the magical drink can help you exercise for up to 16 percent longer.
….CLICK TO  SEE THE PICTURES
The University of Exeter led-study has for the first time shown how the nitrate contained in beetroot juice leads to a reduction in oxygen uptake, making exercise less tiring.

The study reveals that drinking beetroot juice reduces oxygen uptake to an extent that cannot be achieved by any other known means, including training.

To reach the conclusion, research team conducted their study with eight men aged between 19 and 38. They were given 500ml per day of organic beetroot juice for six consecutive days before completing a series of tests, involving cycling on an exercise bike. On another occasion, they were given a placebo of blackcurrant cordial for six consecutive days before completing the same cycling tests.

After drinking beetroot juice the group was able to cycle for an average of 11.25 minutes, which is 92 seconds longer than when they were given the placebo. This would translate into an approximate 2 percent reduction in the time taken to cover a set distance. The group that had consumed the beetroot juice also had lower resting blood pressure.

The researchers are not yet sure of the exact mechanism that causes the nitrate in the beetroot juice to boost stamina. However, they suspect it could be a result of the nitrate turning into nitric oxide in the body, reducing the oxygen cost of exercise.

Source :The research has been published in the Journal of Applied Physiology.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Redshank

 

Botanical Name :Adenostoma sparsifolium
Family : Rosaceae
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Rosales
Genus: Adenostoma
Species: A. sparsifolium

Common Name: Red shank, Ribbon bush,Ribbonwood

Habitat: South-western N. AmericaSouthern California.  Grows in chapparal at elevations of 300 – 2500 metres[

Description:
Adenostoma sparsifolium is an evergreen Shrub growing to 6m.It is a multi-trunked tree or shrub native to dry slopes or chaparral of Southern California and northern Baja California. Shaggy falling shanks or ribbons of bark are one of the strongest characteristics of the tree, hence the common names. Redshanks are closely related to the more abundant Chamise (Adenostoma fasciculatum).

You may click to see the picturs..

It is an annual to tree.
Leaves simple to pinnately to palmately compound, generally alternate; stipules free to fused, persistent to deciduous
Inflorescence: cyme, raceme, panicle, or flowers solitary.

Red shanks grows from the San Luis Obispo/Santa Barbara County line south in chaparral, down through the L.A. basin in coastal sage scrub and up on the edge of the pine forests in many areas like Mountain Center and Wheeler Springs.. It looks something like a tamarisk in fruit and flower. In the upper Malibu area the frequent fires and post-fire seeding of grasses have destroyed most of the plants. Red Shanks makes the area look like something from a James Bond movie shot in Africa or Captain Kirk on an alien planet, or Korea if you watch a MASH rerun. If pruned a little and opened up it makes a very dramatic small tree. Weird that it is not as wide ranging as it’s cousin Chamise, but it is as easy to grow and very tolerant of most garden conditions.

Flower generally bisexual, radial; hypanthium free or fused to ovary, saucer- to funnel-shaped, often with bractlets alternate with sepals; sepals generally 5; petals generally 5, free; stamens (0)5–many, pistils (0)1–many, simple or compound; ovary superior to inferior, styles 1–5
Fruit: achene, follicle, drupe, pome, or blackberry- to raspberry-like
Seeds generally 1–5

It is hardy to zone 8. It is in leaf all year, in flower from May to June. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Insects.

The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils, requires well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. The plant prefers acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It requires dry or moist soil and can tolerate drought.

Cultivation :-
Requires a sheltered sunny position in a well-drained soil and protection from cold winds. Plants are not very hardy in Britain and do not withstand exposure to prolonged winter frosts though they succeed outdoors in the milder areas of the country. In colder areas they are best grown against a south or south-west facing wall. The leaves are resinous and catch fire easily. They have a pleasant aroma.

Propagation:-
Seed – we have no information for this species but suggest sowing the seed in a greenhouse in early spring. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow the plants on for at least their first winter in a greenhouse or cold frame, planting them out in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Cuttings could be tried in August of half-ripe wood, preferably with a heel, in a frame. Layering.

Medicinal Uses:
The plant is cathartic. The plant has been used externally in the treatment of arthritis. An infusion of the leaves has been used in the treatment of colds and chest complaints, and also as a mouth wash to treat toothaches. An infusion of the dried leaves, or the branches, has been used in the treatment of stomach ailments, inducing either bowel movements or vomiting. The crushed twigs have been mixed with oil and used as a salve.

Other Uses
The bark is fibrous and has been stripped off the plants to make women’s skirts. The wood has been used to make fencing posts and as construction material. The wood burns well, giving a high intensity heat.

Disclaimer:The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
http://www.pfaf.org/database/plants.php?Adenostoma+sparsifolium
http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=ADSP&photoID=adsp_004_ahp.jpg
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adenostoma_sparsifolium
http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/get_JM_treatment.pl?6677,6681,6683
http://www.laspilitas.com/nature-of-california/plants/adenostoma-sparsifolium

 

Some Health Quaries & Answers

Sensitive to sunlight :-…..CLICK & SEE

Q: I develop blotchy red patches on my arms and face which tingle and burn within 10 minutes of exposure to the sun.

A: Some people are inherently sensitive to sunlight, while others develop the problem as a reaction to medication like tetracyclines, sulpha drugs or even common painkillers and anti histamines. If you are on medication, consult your doctor about changing or stopping it.

In any case, try to avoid exposure to sunlight by leaving early to work and returning after sunset. Use a black umbrella to block the sun’s rays whenever you go out. Wear long sleeved, dark coloured clothing and covered footwear. For the exposed areas like the face, neck and hands, apply a sunscreen with an SF (sun filter) factor of 15 or more.

Prostate surgery :-….CLICK & SEE
Q: I had prostrate surgery two years ago, after which I developed erectile dysfunction. It persists, causing me great anguish.

A: About 80-90 per cent men have erectile dysfunction after prostatectomy. It is usually temporary and one recovers in 12-18 months. A small percentage does have a long-term problem, especially if the surgery is for cancer. That’s because the nerves in the area may have been cut during the operation. Consult the urologist who performed the surgery and discuss your options.

Corns on feet :-…CLICK & SEE
Q: There are two corns on the sole of my foot, which are very painful. What should I do?

A: A corn is actually a thickened area of skin which develops because of uneven pressure. The commonest causes are faulty gait or ill-fitting footwear. But first confirm the diagnosis by consulting a dermatologist. A bony swelling, wart or abscess may appear like a corn to the untrained eye. If the swellings are really corns, you may use corn plasters to remove them. Follow the instructions on the packet. Corn plasters shouldn’t be used if you have diabetes; the corns will recur unless the causative factor is treated.

Burning skin :-
Q: I have lumbar spondylosis. Whenever I sit in the office or watch TV, I feel an uncomfortable burning sensation on the skin along the right side of my abdomen. It disappears upon moving.

A: Sometimes nerves leading to the skin become trapped as they leave the vertebral column. The pressure on the nerve causes it to tingle and burn, producing the uncomfortable sensation you mentioned. The abnormal curvature of your spine owing to the spondylosis is probably responsible. First, try conservative treatment with —

Weight reduction, if obese

Spinal exercises. These can be learnt from a physiotherapist or yoga teacher

• Learning proper postures

• Walking for 40 minutes a day.

Usually there is an improvement in three months which can be sustained if the lifestyle modifications are continued. If there is no improvement and the symptoms are incapacitating, you might need to consider surgery to correct the spinal deformity.

Anal fissure :-….CLICK & SEE
Q: I have had chronic anal fissure for the last six months. Every time I go to the toilet, I experience severe pain. An ayurvedic physician has guaranteed a cure but insists I allow him to perform surgery first.

A: A fissure occurs usually as a result of straining and then passing a hard stool. It is difficult to heal as the pain causes a spasm in the anal sphincter perpetuating the cycle of straining and constipation.

Conservative treatment with a sitz bath (sitting in a basin of hot water), applying a local anaesthetic cream (xylocaine, lignocaine) before and after passing stool, drinking four litres of water a day, eating a high-fibre diet, and using a stool bulking agent like isapgol cures the problem in 90 per cent of cases.

If the difficulty persists, consult a qualified surgeon who can perform an anal dilation or actually cut the anal sphincter. This has to be done carefully as otherwise you may not be able to control your bowel movement. I do not think an ayurvedic physician is licensed or qualified to perform the surgery.

Small big query :-
Q: I am an 18-year-old man and would like to know what type of underwear I should use.

A: You have to make a choice depending on your comfort level. Underwear that is too tight may cause chaffing of the groin area. This can lead to secondary bacterial or fungal infection. It can also raise the temperature of the testicles, which can marginally lower your sperm count. Boxer shorts are most comfortable. But ensure it is made of a natural fibre.

Source: The Telegraph (Kolkata, India)

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]