World Around Us
thighs may spell higher risk of diabetes
who have relatively shorter thighs appear to have an increased risk of
developing diabetes or a condition that often precedes the disease
compared to those with longer gams, researchers say.
study author, Dr Keiko Asao cautioned that the study does not mean that
thigh length in any way causes diabetes.
who is at the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland, explained
that a third factor such as the environment in the womb or nutrition in
childhood likely influences both leg length and future diabetes risk.
who have relatively shorter thighs are not doomed to developed diabetes,
Asao said. These results are preliminary, she said, and diabetes is a
"multifactorial disease" that results from many different
and her colleagues presented their findings at the American
Heart Associationís 43rd Annual Conference on Cardiovascular Disease
Epidemiology and Prevention in Miami.
obtain their findings, Asao and her team reviewed information about 8,738
adults between the age of 40 and 74 collected during surveys conducted by
the US government. The authors found that the shorter peopleís thighs,
the greater their risk of having diabetes or insulin resistance, a
condition marked by a loss of sensitivity to this key
blood-sugar-regulating hormone that often precedes diabetes. After taking
into account other risk factors, the researchers found the link remained
true for white and Mexican-American women, but not blacks or men.
research has suggested that shorter people may be at an over-all higher
risk of diabetes, Asao noted, but added that in the current study, height
was not linked to diabetes risk.
care for seniorís teeth
people have their own peculiar teeth and gum problems that need extra
care, says Dr M Dewan, Chairman, Dental Department, Sir Ganga Ram
conditions peculiar to seniors include dry mouth (xerostomia), tooth wear
and excessive staining, dental decay(root surface), gum disease
(periodontal disease), loss or alteration in taste, denture care, cracking
and chapping of corners of their mouth. Older adults are prone to tooth
decay because they are frequently on multiple medications that can dry the
mouth. They usually have many areas of gum recession, which can expose the
softer, easily decayed root surface.
teeth or large rough fillings may make cleaning teeth difficult. If having
dentures, denture sores can occur. These may become infected. Be sure
teeth are brushed properly, preferably just before going to bed. To
prevent decay, high strength fluoride toothpaste is very useful. Dentures
need to be relined occasionally every 3 to 5 years.
spice to your diet, years to life
in your life, it seems, can save it as well. New and ongoing research,
according to nutrionists, has found that beside flavouring the palate, the
most commonly used spices in Indian kitchens can possibly reduce the risk
of cancer and cardio-vascular diseases as well.
for example, is already known for its medicinal value besides its flavour.
"Research now has revealed that its main component, curcumin, is a
phyto-chemical and inhibits chronic diseases. Phyto-chemicals, otherwise
known as bio-active chemicals, have important physiological and
bio-chemical impact on the bodyís processes" says Dr Kamala
Krishnaswamy, Emeritus medical scientist, Indian Council for Medical
turmeric, curry leaves, pepper, cumin (zeera), coriander, fenugreek (methi)
have now been found to be able to prevent tissue damage and decrease
glucose and cholesterol in the blood. But the same experts also issue a
word of caution. As far as negative impact of spices is concerned, spices
like chilli, cinnamon sticks and pepper can cause hyper-acidity.
"Spices should also be had within limits," says Dr Krishnaswamy.
to experts, one problem is that not enough clinical trials have been
conducted in the field as yet. "Limited clinical trials have been
carried out but comprehensive ones havenít been. But science-based
evidence is slowly coming out and there is enough empirical data to
support the premise," says Dr Krishnaswamy.
Dr Ramesh V Bhat from Food and Drug Toxicology Research Centre, Hyderabad
: "One should also be careful about the product. Sometimes, the
curative component is extracted separately. "For example, oil from
clove can be extracted and sold separately. So, the clove becomes less
effective. The packaging has to be checked as well. Chilli exports to the
United States have been rejected at times for fungal infection," he
: Reuters, Nature and Hindustan Times,