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International Women's Day: How Stress Can Impact The Heart And Brain In Women – NDTV





Lack of sleep can lead to both physical and mental fatigue

Like men the most common cause of death among women is heart disease, to be precise ‘cardiovascular disease’ which means blocks in the blood vessels of heart or brain. There are multiple health conditions which predispose both men and women to cardiovascular disease such as diabetes, hypertension, high levels of bad cholesterol, low levels of good cholesterol, obesity, lack of physical activity, stress, smoking and genetic predisposition or family history. In addition, women particularly have a few more risk factors, diabetes or hypertension during pregnancy and rheumatic disorders.

Though majority of us know that poor dietary habits and sedentary lifestyle can lead to multiple problems like cardiovascular disease, weight gain and various aches and pains, very few take corrective measures. In most households, grocery shopping and cooking at home are done by women. Which means, if they are aware about good eating habits and healthy lifestyle choices, it will benefit the entire family and thus the whole society.

Let’s discuss few tips for women which can help in preventing cardiovascular disease.

1. Cultivate Healthy Eating Habits 

Never skip Breakfast.

Drink plenty of water, at least 2 to 2.5 litres a day. The adequate water intake for a person is when he or she always passes clear urine.

Include plenty of vegetables and seasonal fruits in your diet. At least 2 to 3 servings of fruits per day is mandatory for all members of the family.

Avoid consuming processed foods, fast foods, desserts, bakery items as much as possible. Prefer multigrain bread as it contains more fibre and nutrients than white bread.
Avoid consuming refined carbohydrates such as Maida (refined flour).
Try natural sources of sweetness like honey instead of white sugar.

Include the necessary amount of proteins and healthy fat in diet.

A good dietician can give a clear picture of balanced diet and can also help a woman to practically plan the food being prepared in her house.

Encourage all family members to eat home cooked food as much as possible.

Have an early dinner around sunset.

2. Exercise 

Finding time for exercise is our responsibility. Stay active throughout the day. Use staircase instead of lift whenever possible. If you have an office job where you are sitting throughout working hours, take short breaks and walk for 5 minutes. If too busy, even standing for a while is helpful.

Know your height, weight and body mass index.
Talk to an exercise expert regarding what all exercises each person has to incorporate in daily routine.

3. Get Enough Sleep

Lack of sleep can lead to fatigue both physical and mental which can result in inability to exercise as well as difficulty in adhering to a proper diet. Though we may know about a healthy diet, psychological imbalances due to stress and lack of sleep can lead to overeating.
So minimum 6 to 8 hours of sound sleep is a must for a woman’s health.

4. Stop Multitasking

If all these need to happen, women should stop multitasking.

When trying to do multiple tasks at the same time, it is hard to differentiate between what is more important and what isn’t.

Dedicate at least an hour daily for self-care.

Plan your day well in advance, at least by the prior evening. That helps in stocking the necessary groceries so that your family’s diet will be a balanced diet. Never go shopping groceries on an empty stomach.

Call for help whenever needed.

5. Get Annual Health Check-ups
For men and women alike, get annual health check-up to find out if you have any lifestyle diseases. Follow corrective measures advised by the physician meticulously.

For women, periodic preventive health screening for cervical and breast cancer is also recommended.

Remember You can take care of your family only if you have good health. As the saying goes, prevention is better than cure.

Effect of Stress 

‘Stress’ or ‘mental stress’, a ubiquitous phenomenon, is commonly, though incorrectly, implicated as a cause for many neurological disorders such as headaches, stroke, dementia, epilepsy, or chronic low back ache. This is an ill-founded deep-rooted unscientific myth. With increasing understanding of the disease mechanisms due to breakthrough research in genetics and neuroimmunology, and widespread availability of diagnostic testing, the interface between the psychological and the neurological disorders is rapidly diminishing. A role of endogenous steroids and catecholamines, and autoantibodies in the development of stress and acute or chronic neurological manifestations such as headache, tremulousness, lack of concentration, memory or attention deficits, loss of consciousness with or without abnormal body posturing or movements, weakness or loss of sensation in one or more limbs, abnormal bizarre movements, inability to speak, and/or neck or back pain. Females have been reported to be more commonly affected by stress and thus manifest. A stressor preceding the onset of the complaints may not be overt and requires a diligent and empathetic effort from the treating physician who must keep a high index of suspicion. However, the non-specific nature of these complaints poses a significant challenge in this distinction. Most of the routine investigations may not establish the etiology and thus result in sub-optimal management. Not uncommonly, a primary neurological disorder, such as migraine, epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease, dementia, spondylotic / degenerative spine disease, myasthenia, etc., co-exist or are aggravated/precipitated by the stress or vice-versa. The caregivers of patients with chronic neurological disorders can also suffer from stress.

However, there is no mechanism to quantify the ‘stress’ and public awareness about
mental health and various neurological disorders can only bridge this gap across all age groups, especially during the present challenging times of on-going SARS2-COVID pandemic
as effective treatments are available and constantly evolving.

(Dr. Manish Mahajan, Sr. Consultant – Neurology & Head – Neuroimmunology, Artemis hospital; Dr Ankur Phatarpekar, Director CATH LABS, Cardiologist, Symbiosis Hospital, Mumbai)

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed within this article are the personal opinions of the author. NDTV is not responsible for the accuracy, completeness, suitability, or validity of any information on this article. All information is provided on an as-is basis. The information, facts or opinions appearing in the article do not reflect the views of NDTV and NDTV does not assume any responsibility or liability for the same.

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Quebec health officials confirm 25 monkeypox cases now in province – Global News



Quebec public health officials are reporting a total of 25 confirmed cases of monkeypox in the province as of Thursday.

Dr. Luc Boileau, interim public health director in the province, described it as a “serious outbreak” of the virus. Officials are investigating several more suspected cases.

“We had about 20 to 30 suspected cases under investigation so far,” Boileau said.

The province will also begin administering the Imvamune vaccine to close contacts of confirmed or suspected cases of monkeypox as soon as Friday. A single dose will be provided within four days of exposure to the virus.

Quebec’s Health Ministry said in a statement that a second dose of the vaccine could be administered, but only if the risk of exposure is “still present 28 days later” and “only following a decision by public health authorities.”

READ MORE: Mass vaccinations for monkeypox not needed, WHO official says

Boileau said the majority of confirmed cases in the province are tied mostly to men who have had sexual relations with other men. There has been one case in a person under 18.

Last week, Quebec recorded the first cases of the virus in the country. The first suspected cases were reported on May 12 in Montreal.

Monkeypox is a rare disease that comes from the same family of viruses that causes smallpox, which the World Health Organization declared eradicated around the globe in 1980.

The virus spreads through prolonged closed contact. It can cause fever, headache, muscle aches, exhaustion, swollen lymph nodes and lesions.

— with files from Global News’ Dan Spector and the Canadian Press

© 2022 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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Quebec to start monkeypox vaccination of contacts as officials confirm 25 cases



MONTREAL — Quebec’s interim public health director says the province could start vaccinating people against monkeypox as soon as Friday.

Dr. Luc Boileau says there are now 25 confirmed cases of the disease in the province and about 30 suspected cases are under investigation.

He says the province has received supplies of smallpox vaccine from the federal government, and it will be administered to people who have been in close contact with confirmed cases of the disease.

Dr. Caroline Quach, the chair of Quebec’s immunization committee, says the vaccine has been shown to prevent monkeypox in animal studies if it is administered within four days of an exposure and can reduce severity if it is administered up to 14 days after an exposure.

She says the disease is transmitted only through prolonged close contact.

Boileau says the majority of cases are in adult men who have been in sexual contact with people who have the disease, and there has been one case in a person under 18.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 26, 2022.


The Canadian Press

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Monkeypox Warnings Ignored; Dominant COVID Strain Emerges; Better Paxlovid Access – Medpage Today



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Warning signs of the current monkeypox outbreak may have been ignored. (STAT)

The CDC issued a monkeypox travel alert encouraging “enhanced precautions” after cases were reported in North America, Europe, and Australia.

Roche announced it has developed three PCR test kits to detect the monkeypox virus.

The U.S. has a new dominant COVID-19 strain — BA.2.12.1 — a highly contagious sublineage of the BA.2 omicron subvariant that now accounts for 57.9% of all cases, according to CDC estimates.

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee, as well as Lt. Gov.Denny Heck, both tested positive for COVID-19, as did U.S. Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.). (Seattle Times, The Hill)

As of Thursday at 8:00 a.m. EDT, the unofficial U.S. COVID toll was 83,697,199 cases and 1,004,558 deaths, increases of 218,146 and 913, respectively, compared with this time Wednesday morning.

The Biden Administration, projecting COVID infections will continue to spread during the summer travel season announced additional steps to make nirmatrelvir/ritonavir (Paxlovid) more accessible. (ABC News)

The White House also reported the launch of the first federally-supported test-to-treat COVID site.

U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson and other senior leaders of the government are to blame for booze-filled parties that violated the country’s COVID-19 lockdown rules, according to an investigative report. (NPR)

A mouse study suggested that maraviroc (Selzentry), a FDA-approved drug used to treat HIV, may be able to reverse middle-aged memory loss. (Nature)

The University of California system will be paying nearly $700 million to women who said they were sexually abused by a UCLA gynecologist over the course of several decades. (AP)

The parents of a 4-year-old girl spoke out about her mysterious case of pediatric hepatitis that required a liver transplant, one of 180 similar cases under investigation in the U.S. (Today)

Teva Pharmaceuticals has issued a voluntary nationwide recall of one lot of anagrelide capsules, which are used to treat thrombocythemia secondary to myeloproliferative neoplasms, due to dissolution test failure during routine stability testing.

Servier announced the FDA approved ivosidenib (Tibsovo) in combination with azacitidine for certain patients with newly diagnosed IDH1-mutated acute myeloid leukemia.

A report from the American Medical Association shows that payers are not following the prior authorization reforms agreed to in 2018. (Fierce Healthcare)

The mass shooting in Buffalo earlier this month is a reminder that millions of Americans don’t have easy access to grocery stores. (NPR)

COVID-era misinformation is leading a wave of parents to reject ordinary childhood immunizations. (New York Times)

The FDA issued guidance spelling out rules for states that want to import certain prescription drugs from Canada.

  • Mike Bassett is a staff writer focusing on oncology and hematology. He is based in Massachusetts.

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