Tag Archives: Attention

Ecballium elaterium

Botanical Name : Ecballium elaterium
Family: Cucurbitaceae
Tribus: Bryonieae
Genus: Ecballium
Species: Ecballium elaterium
Subspecies: E. e. subsp. elaterium – E. e. subsp. dioicum
Synonyms: Momordica elateria

Common Name : Squirting Cucumber

Habitat :Ecballium elaterium is native to Europe – Mediterranean. Naturalized in Britain at a few locations along the south coast. It grows on hot dry places on waste ground and roadsides, usually close to the coast.

Description:
Ecballium elaterium is a perennial plant,  growing to 0.3 m (1ft) by 1 m (3ft 3in).
It is frost tender. It is in flower from Jun to August, and the seeds ripen from Aug to September. The flowers are monoecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but both sexes can be found on the same plant) and are pollinated by Insects.The plant is self-fertile….CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils, prefers well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry or moist soil.
Cultivation:
Prefers a moist well-drained soil in a sunny position. Grows best in a rich soil. Another report says that it succeeds in poor soils. The foliage is fairly frost-tender, though the roots are much hardier and plants can survive quite cold winters in Britain. They are more likely to be killed by excessive winter wet. The squirting cucumber is sometimes cultivated for its use as a medicinal plant. The ripening fruit becomes pumped full of liquid, leading to an increase in pressure. As the seed becomes ripe, this pressure forces the fruit to break away explosively from the plant, ejecting its seed to a considerable distance in the opposite direction. The plant occasionally self-sows in our Cornwall trial ground and can become a weed in warmer climates than Britain. It is subject to statutory control as a weed in Australia.
Propagation:
Seed – sow early spring in rich compost in a greenhouse. Place 2 – 3 seeds per pot and thin to the strongest plant. The seed usually germinates in 10 – 21 days at 25°c. Grow the plants on fast and plant them out after the last expected frosts.
Medicinal Uses:
Ecballium elaterium has been used as a medicinal plant for over 2,000 years, though it has a very violent effect upon the body and has little use in modern herbalism. The juice of the fruit is antirheumatic, cardiac and purgative. The plant is a very powerful purgative that causes evacuation of water from the bowels. It is used internally in the treatment of oedema associated with kidney complaints, heart problems, rheumatism, paralysis and shingles. Externally, it has been used to treat sinusitis and painful joints. It should be used with great caution and only under the supervision of a qualified practitioner. Excessive doses have caused gastro-enteritis and even death. It should not be used by pregnant women since it can cause an abortion. The fully grown but unripe fruits are harvested during the summer, they are left in containers until the contents are expelled and the juice is then dried for later use. The root contains an analgesic principle.
Known Hazards : Poisonous in large quantities (this probably refers to the fruit). The juice of the fruit is irritative to some skins
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:
https://species.wikimedia.org/wiki/Ecballium_elaterium
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Ecballium+elaterium

http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_RST.htm

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Cytomegalovirus

Definition
Cytomegalovirus (say: si-toe-meg-ah-low-vi-russ), or CMV, is a very common virus. It  is a viral genus of the viral group known as Herpesviridae or herpesviruses. It is typically abbreviated as CMV: The species that infects humans it is commonly known as human CMV (HCMV) or human herpesvirus-5 (HHV-5), and is the best studied of all cytomegoloviruses. Within Herpesviridae, CMV belongs to the Betaherpesvirinae subfamily, which also includes the genera Muromegalovirus and Roseolovirus. It is related to other herpesviruses within the subfamilies of Alphaherpesvirinae that includes herpes simplex viruses (HSV)-1 and -2 and varicella-zoster virus (VZV), and the Gammaherpesvirinae subfamily that includes Epstein-Barr virus. All herpesviruses share a characteristic ability to remain latent within the body over long periods. Although they may be found throughout the body, CMV infections are frequently associated with the salivary glands in humans and other mammals. Other CMV viruses are found in several mammal species, but species isolated from animals differ from HCMV in terms of genomic structure, and have not been reported to cause human disease.

click  & see the pictures

People are usually infected by the time they are 2 years old or during their teenage years and carry the virus for life (usually in a dormant or inactive state). The majority of adults carry the virus by the time they are 40 years of age.

Many people are infected with CMV and don’t even know it because the virus rarely causes symptoms and usually does not cause long-term problems.

However, CMV can cause problems in people who have weak immune systems and in a newborn if the mother gets the infection during pregnancy.

Causes:
CMV gets into body fluids, such as saliva, blood, urine, semen and breast milk. A person is able to transmit (or “shed”) the virus to others only when it is active in his or her system (not dormant). It can be spread from one person to another through sexual contact and contact with blood and other body fluids. CMV can rarely be transmitted by blood transfusion or organ transplantation. In developed countries, blood supplies are screened for CMV when they’re to be used for those at greatest risk from the infection.

 Symptoms:

Usually, CMV does not cause symptoms or only causes mild symptoms. A few people will have symptoms that are similar to mononucleosis. Symptoms of CMV can include:

•Sore throat
•Swollen lymph nodes (lymph glands)
•Fever
•Headache
•Fatigue
•Weakness
•Muscle aches
•Loss of appetite


People who have weakened immune systems due to conditions like human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) or because they received an organ transplant and are taking immunosuppressant medicines may have severe symptoms. (Immunosuppressant medicines are medicines that lower or suppress the immune system.) Symptoms of severe CMV include:
•Blindness
•Pneumonia
•Diarrhea
•Bleeding ulcers in the esophagus (windpipe) or intestines
•Inflammation of the brain (encephalitis)
•Seizures

If a pregnant woman transmits CMV to her unborn baby, miscarriage, stillbirth or death of the newborn may occur. Newborns who survive are at an increased risk for hearing loss and mental retardation. However, only 1% of newborns who are infected with CMV during pregnancy experience problems from the virus. Most are born healthy, or with only mild CMV symptoms.

Who’s affected?
In most cases, CMV is harmless, but for some people infection can have disastrous consequences.

People with weakened immune systems (because of HIV, for example) can suffer serious illness. They may experience high fever for two or three weeks, accompanied by hepatitis and jaundice.

Other serious complications include pneumonia, inflammation of the brain (encephalitis) and blindness as a result of inflammation of the retina at the back of the eye.

CMV remains in the body for life. For those with strong immune systems, it remains inactive. If the immune system is weakened through illness or medical treatments, CMV may be reactivated, causing further medical problems and distress.

If a pregnant woman becomes infected with CMV for the first time, the virus may pass through the placenta and infect her unborn baby. If this happens early in pregnancy, the risk of miscarriage increases, as does the chance of the baby being born with malformations. For example, CMV infection in the womb is the leading cause of congenital deafness.

If the infection is contracted later in pregnancy, stillbirth and premature labour are more likely. A newborn baby may suffer severe illness shortly after birth – jaundice, enlargement of the liver and blood disorders.

Diagnosis:
CMV is diagnosed with a blood test.

CMV is more likey to cause vision problems in people who have weakened immune systems, so if you have conditions such as HIV or AIDS, your doctor may recommend that you visit an eye doctor to find out whether the virus has infected your eyes. Be sure to let your doctor know if you are having any painless blurring of your vision, “floaters” only in one eye, light flashes or areas of blindness. You should also let your doctor(s) know if you are experiencing frequent shortness of breath with flu-like symptoms, or if you are having problems hearing.

Treatment:
For otherwise healthy people, CMV usually doesn’t require treatment. If your immune system is weakened, your doctor may use one of several different medicines to treat CMV infection. However, because CMV is a virus, regular antibiotics won’t work against it. Antiviral drugs are usually prescribed, which slows the virus down (but cannot cure CMV).

If you are pregnant, your doctor may want to test you for CMV to determine if there is a risk for your unborn baby. If you do carry the virus, your doctor may suggest a test called amniocentesis, which collects a sample of the amniotic fluid for testing. It can help determine whether your unborn baby has CMV.

If you are pregnant and your baby has CMV, you doctor will likely check your baby once he or she is born for any problems or birth defects so they can be treated early. Treatable symptoms in newborns include pneumonia, hearing loss and inflammation of the eye.

Prevention:
In child care centers, as many as 70% of children ages 1 to 3 can shed the virus. Careful, frequent hand washing with soap and water may help prevent the spread of CMV.

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://www.bbc.co.uk/health/physical_health/conditions/cmv1.shtml
http://familydoctor.org/online/famdocen/home/common/infections/common/viral/743.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cytomegalovirus
http://medippt.files.wordpress.com/2010/10/cytomegalovirus.jpg

http://health.allrefer.com/health/cmv-immunocompromised-host-cmv-cytomegalovirus.html

http://archive.microbelibrary.org/ASMOnly/Details.asp?ID=658

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How Meditation Changes Your Brain

There is growing evidence to show that meditation can make people healthier and happier. It may even increase lifespan, alter brain structure and change personality.

CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES

Now, mainstream medicine is beginning to take notice of meditation’s effects. For example, mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT), which is about 80 percent meditation, has been approved in Britain for use with people who have experienced three or more episodes of depression.

MRI scans of long-term meditators have shown greater activity in brain circuits involved in paying attention. Long-term meditation can also cause changes in the actual structure of your cortex, the outer layer of your brain. Brain regions associated with attention and sensory processing have been shown to be thicker in meditators.

Studies suggest that meditation can help you to train your attention and focus, even in the midst of distractions. For instance, when disturbing noises were played to a group of experienced meditators undergoing an MRI, they had little effect on the brain areas involved in emotion and decision-making.

About 10 million people meditate every day in the West, and many more in other parts of the world.

Sources: The London Times March 14, 2008

Staying Sharp: Meditation – Not Just for Yogis

by Phil Scott

You expect a meditation teacher’s voice to be calm and soothing, and Jim Malloy of the World Wide Online Meditation Center doesn’t disappoint. He sounds reassuring, peaceful   and, dare I say it? ……“ enlightened. For good reason: Malloy first discovered meditation just out of high school, and he’s been teaching it for 33 years now. What he says about it sounds familiar and yet astonishing: Meditation improves heart health and brain functions, makes meditators feel better, and helps them maintain their mental clarity and emotional balance through the day.

.Illustration by Timothy Cook for NRTA Live & Learn.

CLICK & SEE

According to a 1983 Harvard study of Transcendental Meditation, it increases longevity; cognitive, perceptual, and behavioral flexibility; and learning ability in older adults. In a recent study, University of Kentucky researchers tested a group of students before and after 40 minutes of meditation, napping, exercise, or consuming caffeine. The researchers found that the subjects had improved reaction time after meditating. In addition, those who had gone without sleep the prior evening and then meditated in the morning performed better than others who also hadn’t slept but skipped the meditation.  CLICK & SEE

Check your local meditation or yoga centers; many will offer inexpensive or even free workshops.
Meditation can improve physical health, too. “It can boost your immune system, improving influenza immunity and response to the [flu] vaccine,” says Michael R. Irwin, MD, a professor at UCLA‘s Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior. “Moving meditation can boost shingles immunity.

The Meditating Brain
So how does it work? According to Irwin, when you’re excited or upset you experience an increase in the outflow from the sympathetic nervous system, elevating your blood pressure and heart rate. Meditation produces a counteracting increase in the outflow of the parasympathetic nervous system, which slows the heart, constricts the pupils, and dilates blood vessels. “Chanting a mantra alters brain waves because you’re focusing on the same sound,” he continues. “Like when you sing ‘Ave Maria.’ It regulates the breathing and increases the parasympathetic outflow from the brain.

Meditation doesn’t take special equipment. Unless a mantra counts. “Traditionally in Hindu culture the mantra was passed on from guru to disciple,” Malloy says. But he adds that anything will do in a pinch: concentrating on your breath while saying “Om,” or counting from 1 to 10 over and over. “A mantra is not confined to Hinduism. The Rosary is a mantra; ‘Amen,’ that’s a mantra.” And, apparently, so is ‘Ave Maria.’

Perfect Focus Not Required
After settling on a mantra, sit down and close your eyes. Gently focus your attention on the mantra, your breath. If your attention wanders, to bills, changing your car’s oil, or Dancing with the Stars, just gently bring it back; a wandering mind is a natural part of meditation. “People have misconceptions,” says Malloy.   They think you have to turn off your mind, make it blank. Trying to force your mind to become blank is like trying to force yourself to go to sleep.  But something will happen: Relaxation. Lower blood pressure. Boosted immune system. Malloy recommends meditating for a mere 10 minutes a day. After a month, he says, increase it to 20 minutes, if you feel like it. You’ll begin to reap the benefits right away.

Sources:http://www.aarp.org/learntech/wellbeing/staying_sharp_meditation.html

Dhanurasana -Type2(Yoga Exercise)

In Sanskrit Dhanur means Bow.

Posture: In this Exercise the body is stretched more like a string of bow when pulled at the time of archery.
Technique of doing the exercise

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Pre position : LIE  WITH BELLY ON THE FLOOR

1. Bend the left leg in knee and keep the foot on the thigh of right leg. Keep the right leg straight.
2. Hold the big toe of the left leg with right hand, hold it between the thumb and index finger and other 3 fingers to have a good grip of the thumb. Hold big toe of the right leg with left hand.
3. Exhale and inhaling start lifting the left foot with the right hand and pull it up to ear.&nbspKeep the trunk and neck erect and the sight fixed on the other end of the left hand.
4. Continue normal breathing.

Position : While trying to raise the foot up to ear, one tends to bend neck. But this is wrong, initially it may be difficult but it does not matter. Only care should be taken to keep the neck and trunk straight. Try to pull up the foot as much as possible.
Releasing Technique:

1. Inhale and exhaling, start bringing the foot down and place it on the thigh.
2. Restore the hands to their place.
3. Take the left foot to original position.

Duration : This asana exerts great strain and one can’t maintain it for long but with practice one can maintain it for up to 30 seconds.

Benefits:
In this asana great strain is exerted on hand, legs and joints of waist and the knees. Consequently the efficiency of the organs increases.

Precaution: One should avoid the temptation of attaining the ideal position if strain is unbearable.

Reference Book:- Yoga Pravesh