Thursday, February 9, 2023
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Exercise is important for cancer patients

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Five reasons physical activity is important for cancer patients

 

 

You might know that physical activity can help lower your risk of getting many common types of cancer. But what many of us don’t realise is just how important physical activity is if you’ve been diagnosed with cancer.

While patients were previously told to rest during cancer treatment, the overwhelming body of evidence now shows that physical activity is safe and beneficial throughout cancer treatment and beyond. The World Health Organization also endorses physical activity for those with chronic conditions, including cancer.

Here are five ways physical activity could be beneficial to patients during and after cancer treatment.

1. It supports mental health

A cancer diagnosis can be extremely emotional, and patients may feel uncertainty and fear regarding their diagnosis and treatment. Research shows that many patients experience increased feelings of anxiety and depression, alongside reduced quality of life. This may occur just after diagnosis, during treatment and in some cases is experienced for years after the completion of treatment.

But many studies have shown that physical activity during and after cancer treatment can help manage these mental health struggles, alongside improving patients’ self-esteem and overall mood.

Moderate-intensity aerobic exercise (such as brisk walking) two to three times a week combined with muscle strengthening (such as pilates or weight lifting) has been shown to significantly reduce anxiety and depression in people suffering with many different types of cancer, including breast, prostate, colorectal, gynaecological and lung cancer.

2. It may reduce feelings of fatigue

Fatigue is one of the most frequently reported side effects associated with cancer and its treatment, which can have a serious affect on a cancer patient’s daily life and their physical, emotional and mental wellbeing.

Research shows regular physical activity can help reduce feelings of fatigue. Evidence suggests that moderate to vigorous-intensity activity which combines both aerobic and muscle strengthening activities two to three times a week is beneficial for reducing fatigue in those diagnosed with breast and prostate cancer.

3. It can help to cope with treatment

Many studies have shown that patients who are able to tolerate their prescribed dose of chemotherapy have a better prognosis. However, the dose of chemotherapy patients receive is often reduced due to a range of treatment-related side-effects and complications they experience.

Encouragingly, some studies suggest that breast cancer patients who completed muscle-strengthening or a combination of both aerobic and muscle-strengthening activities during treatment were less likely to need chemotherapy dose reductions. The evidence for a link between physical activity and chemotherapy is still emerging and research is ongoing.

 

4. It may prevent hospitalisation

Treatment for cancer, including surgery and chemotherapy, can lead to complications for some people, which may require hospitalisation. But research suggests that for patients with breast cancer physical activity can lower the risk of hospitalisation.

Researchers asked participants to take part in a 16-week programme of combined muscle strengthening and interval training which was performed twice a week during chemotherapy. They found that the group which performed a combination of strength and interval training had a 3% lower incidence of hospitalisation compared to those who were inactive.

5. It could reduce risk of recurrence and improves survival

A large review of 18 reviews of physical activity among those with cancer found that higher physical activity levels was associated with a reduced risk of cancer returning, and improved survival by up to 40%-50%.

Time to move

Many patients with cancer avoid physical activity as they’re unsure of what it safe for them to do. But the World Health Organization recommends that all patients with cancer should avoid being inactive both during and after treatment.

Instead, it says adult cancer patients should aim to complete at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity each week that raises the heart beat (such as brisk walking, cycling and dancing). It also recommendeds that patients aim to do muscle strengthening exercises (such as weight lifting or yoga) at least twice a week.

While it can often be difficult to schedule in time to be physically active – especially during treatment – even small amounts of physical activity interspersed during the day are important for health. Some easy ways to include more activity into your day include getting off the bus a stop early or squatting while waiting for the kettle to boil. This form of activity may also be useful for cancer patients who are feeling fatigued, as it only requires a few minutes at a time throughout the day.

For those having cancer treatment, it’s important to remember that some days will be better than others. Take it easy on the days you feel unwell. On the days you’re feeling a bit better, try to increase the amount of exercise you do just a little.

It’s important to stay hydrated, not to overdo it and listen to your body. You may find being active more enjoyable if you involve friends and family.

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons license. Read the original article.

Is therapy working for you? (Part 2)

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Finding the right therapist wins you half the battle, writes Vinita Alvares Fernandes  

How to find the perfect therapist “for you”

If you’re considering therapy, whether it’s to help you cope with a major change in your life, an adjusting period, to restore a relationship, recover from a traumatic event or improve your mental health — finding the right therapist wins you half the battle. 

The bond between you and your therapist needs to be rock solid. This bond is likely to have a huge impact on you so it is vital for you to do your research, ask the right questions and most importantly trust your gut when you’re looking for the right therapist for you. Its a chemistry that blends.

  • Ask someone you trust — A referral from a friend, colleague, doctor or family member you trust is a great  way to find a therapist who might be a good fit for you. While a referral is a good place to start, it may not necessarily be the right fit. It’s important to recognise that you may have different needs than the person giving you the recommendation. Do not feel compelled to use their recommendation. 
  • Think about your goals and what you would like to achieve through therapy — When you and your therapist work together in tandem toward the same goals you’re guaranteed a great outcome. Your goals may change as time goes by and as you work with your therapist. Make sure your therapist is willing to adapt to these changing goals. 
  • When looking for a therapist make a note of the issues you want to address. These can be specific or vague.
  • If you have any specific requirements of your therapist be sure to address those before choosing your therapist — For example you may be more comfortable with someone who is of the same gender or someone with more experience or some people might be inclined to a person of similar age. 
  • Ask questions, the important questions while choosing a therapist — 
  • How much can you realistically afford to spend per session? 
  • Where will therapy fit into your schedule? 
  • Do you need a therapist who can see you on a specific day of the week? 

Most importantly remember that it is totally normal to change therapists or types of therapy, if one isn’t working for you. Keep trying until you find the right fit. 

Signs your therapist and therapy is working —

  • They actually listen to you — Feeling heard and understood means that your therapist is doing their job correctly. A good therapist doesn’t just sit back and listen to what youre saying, they take in your words and understand them. You should feel like you have your therapist’s undivided attention. 
  • You feel validated — Your therapist should validate your thoughts, emotions, actions and experiences. This doesn’t necessarily mean that they agree with everything you say or do. There is a big difference between validation and approval. Validation is about acknowledging that this is what you are feeling and going through. Approval or disapproval is a judgement which is a bright red flag. A good therapist tries to avoid making judgments. 
  • They want what’s best for you — A good therapist gives you the tools to make a positive change in your life. They genuinely want to see you doing better and feeling better, even if it’s something they don’t necessarily agree with. A professional therapist will accept your decision, even when it might not serve them personally.
  • They give you the tools to do the work and offer you varied solutions — Therapy is challenging and at times painful. You have to do the dirty work if you are seeking powerful changes. Seeking help is just the beginning. While your therapist can’t do the work for you, they are there to give you the proper tools, support and guide you. There’s no one-size-fits-all treatment plan. What works for you may not work for someone else and only a good therapist will recognise this. 
  • You notice a change in yourself — Meaningful change is an indication that therapy is working and your therapist knows what they’re doing. The first few changes will be small, but noticeable by you. After a while of regular therapy you will notice purposeful and positive results which means you’re on the right track. 
  • They challenge you — Your therapist can recognise when its time to challenge you to spur growth. They support you but aren’t afraid to challenge you, question you, make you dig deep and ask you tough questions. Whatever tools your therapist uses, make sure it’s done in a manner that makes you feel safe and respected. If you ever feel stupid, damaged or guilty, it’s time to reconsider the relationship.
  • You view them as an ally and trust them — Your therapist isn’t your best friend, your mentor, guru or boss. They are your trusted ally. Someone who guides you and is in your corner. Your therapist’s role is to guide you but not tell you what to do. They give you the tools to get there, but you reach your goal on your own. You relationship with your therapist is based on trust and mutual understanding-  therapeutic alliance. Trust is what keeps the relationship with your therapist going. 

 

What if it’s not a good match?

Sometimes you may not gel with your therapist and feel that they’re not a good match for you. This is completely fine. It can take some time to find someone that you feel completely comfortable with. It’s all a process of trial and error.  

At the end of your first session, if you aren’t sure how you feel about your therapist but would like another session to figure it out- this is totally acceptable. 

If you know that you do not want to meet with them again, thank them for their time and let them know that you don’t think that it’s a good match. 

The first step while forging a relationship with your therapist is openness and honesty. 

A bad therapist isn’t necessarily one who’s running around breaking all the rules of therapy, the vibe between the two of you may not be right and it all varies from person to person. 

However there are a few red flags that will point you in the direction of change… changing your therapist. 

  • You don’t feel heard- If you feel like you aren’t being heard, aren’t receiving a solid, or helpful response from your therapist or find your therapist distracted, they may not be the best choice for you.
  • Trust should be a foundation- People forget that trust is the foundation of this relationship. If you do not trust your therapist- you are doomed. It takes a minimum of three to four sessions to start feeling comfortable with your therapist but if after this you don’t feel like you can trust your therapist it’s time to move on and look elsewhere. 
  • They judge you or make you feel inferior- If at any point during therapy you feel like your therapist is passing judgements or making comments that don’t make you feel good or simply don’t sit right with you, you need to find a new therapist. Any kind of judgement or negative comments that add to your issues rather than ease them is a red flag waving in your face. You are meant to be empowered by therapy, not belittled by it.
  • You are the driver- The therapist’s role is to give the client back their autonomy right from the start. Your therapist should be asking things like, ‘What would you like to focus on in your session?” You need to be the leader and driver of the session. Your therapist is simply your co-passenger, someone who helps you interpret the map of your life. If your therapist has taken over as driver- its time to drop them off at the next stop and find a new co-passenger. 
  • Your therapist makes your session about them- While it’s nice to have a level of resonance with each other, your therapy session isn’t going well if you start talking about your therapist more than you talk about yourself. 
  • You still can’t cope in real life- Therapy is not a straightforward process, some days you might feel better and other days you might feel worse. But overall, you should feel like you’re moving in the right direction. IF you dont feel this way, you should be moving in the direction of finding a new therapist. 

Just remember: The key to figuring out how to utilize a therapist starts with understanding your therapists purpose, while the therapist can serve you in many ways, know that they are principally there to help you hone your problem-solving skills, offer feedback and push you along towards your goals. 

Understanding Cancer

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On 04 Feb, 2023, Seniors Today hosted their weekly Health Live Webinar with Dr Prasad Pande. He spoke on Issues concerning Cancer Detection, Treatment and Care in view of World Cancer Day.

 

About Dr Prasad Pande

Dr Pandey is a Laparoscopic gastrointestinal and liver and pancreas surgeon. He has worked with the G B Pant Hospital, New Delhi and the Lilavati Hospital, Mumbai. He was trained with Stall-words of Gastrointestinal surgery in India. He has more than a decade of experience  in pancreatic and upper gastrointestinal surgery.

He has written numerous articles that are published in international peer review journals and has delivered talks in international conferences. 

The incidence of cancer is increasing with every passing day and that is a matter of concern. The number of patients being diagnosed with cancer are rising and so are the number of types of cancers that are being diagnosed. 

As a disease, cancer is not a single entity, there are multiple organs in the human body and each organ has its own set of different types of cancers but one thing that is common to all cancers is that it is a menace to the health of the patient and that’s is a huge burden- mentally, physically, emotionally and financially. 

“Prevention is better than cure” and “a stitch in time saves nine” are two proverbs that do hold and stand true in the case of cancer and cancer patients. 

You can to a certain extent prevent cancer by changing your diet and lifestyle. 

But in case you are unfortunate enough and are suffering from any kind/ type of cancer which can be developing, it is better to diagnose it in time so you can receive the best possible treatment before the situation slips out of our hands. 

With the kind of exposure we have to the potential carcinogens in the form of air pollutants, food adulteration, and the amount of genetic mutation that we have seen- has led to a rise in the number of cancers and their types. 

We are now fortunately at a stage where healthcare has advanced to a point where we can detect and diagnose cancer at an early stage and intervene with appropriate treatment to such an extent that the patient has a near normal life expectancy. 

Cancer is no longer a death sentence; provided it is detected early. 

The motto/ theme for this year’s Cancer Day is- “Close the Care Gap”.

With senior citizens, who suffer from other co-morbidities and diseases, not only makes them more susceptible to cancer but also makes the treatment of cancer more difficult. 

Every year 45 Lakh people are diagnosed with colon cancer, worldwide. And colon cancer is not even the most common cancer in the world; so yes, the number of patients who are being diagnosed with cancer are increasing every year. 

But there are two aspects to it-

  1. The number of patients suffering from cancer are increasing 
  2. This is a slightly more encouraging aspect- Our healthcare system, screening protocols, investigations, diagnostic techniques are also improving- which means that we are now able to diagnose more patients with cancer at an early stage and we are able to treat them. 

Approximately 50 years ago, when all these imaging and diagnostic techniques were not readily available, we used to have a lot of patients who died of unknown causes. And yes, cancer was one of the common causes for it. We are now able to detect, diagnose and treat. 

The numbers have increased because our ability to diagnose has also increased. 

However, the increase in the number of cancer patients has also increased due to some other external factors such as- environmental factors- water and air pollution, multiple genetic mutations that have now come into play which were not there, say 50 years ago. Lifestyle factors such as smoking, alcohol consumption, processed food intake. All of this has contributed to the rise in the number of cancer patients. 

Most common cancers are those of the oral cavity, breast, lungs.

There is a difference in the incidence of cancers and their prevalence in the male and female population. 

Breast cancer is of a higher incidence in the female population, followed by lung cancer. 

Likewise, lung and prostate cancers are found more commonly in men. 

In males, oral cancer is the most common followed by lung cancer. 

Colon cancer is the third most common cancer- in both males and females. 

The number of these cases are increasing worldwide. There are few cancers which show geographical preponderance. Such as- gallbladder cancer is more common in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar in India.

There is a lack of awareness in the general population about cancer. But there is also a gap of care in patients with cancer- which we aim at reducing. 

The journey of a patient from his home to his family doctor to a specialist – is shorter than what it was 20 years ago. But we need to keep striving to make it shorter. 

In a third world country like India, with an exploding population, it is very difficult to get every patient the necessary and more importantly timely diagnosis and treatment. This leads to patients reaching the hospitals at a later stage where a definitive and curative treatment might not be a possibility for the patient. Thus, in such patients the aim is to control the tumour and increase their lifespan. 

It is a long way to go, but there are increasing facilities for diagnosis, treatment and care for cancer patients. 

Therapy for all (Part-1)

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Therapy for all (Part-1)

It’s never a bad time to reach out. Old or young, sad or happy, you don’t need a big reason to start therapy. 

If you are looking to start therapy, there are many options available. Some approaches work for specific situations while some approaches are able to cast a wider net. You need to make sure that you work with a trained mental health professional and each session is based on the issues you’re looking to address. Therapy helps you get to the root of problems, understand situations and people better, look at things through a clearer lens. 

During the 2020 Golden Globes Awards , director Bong Joon Ho said in his acceptance speech “Once you overcome the one-inch tall barrier of subtitles, you will be introduced to so many more amazing films.”

The same applies with therapy — Going through the process may be difficult but the end result is usually a happier, more fulfilling life.

Therapist vs. Psychiatrist —

Let’s start with the basics. Therapists and psychiatrists both aim to treat mental health conditions and improve emotional well-being but there are key differences to their approaches. 

Therapists include psychologists, social workers and counsellors. Their aim is to help people manage their emotions, build healthier relationships and understand themselves better. They use talk therapy and behaviour modification methods to make positive changes in people’s lives.

Psychiatrists on the other hand are medical doctors who specialise in diagnosing and treating mental health conditions. Psychiatrists can prescribe medication to people to treat symptoms and who need medication to help treat them.

You are never ‘too old’ to start therapy —

Ageing changes you. Physically, mentally and emotionally. Midlife and senior citizen life bring both loss and liberation. Just know that you don’t have to cope with these tectonic changes on your own. A good therapist is all you need. Therapy is powerful and transformative at any age. Here’s how… 

Therapy can equip you to deal with change —

As we age, our body goes through changes as well. Starting with our fluctuating hormones. 

When oestrogen, testosterone, and other hormone levels start to drop, it affects a lot of things like your sleep habits, sex drive, muscle tone, skin texture. Your physical capabilities start to deteriorate, injuries and illness become more common. Apart from these physical changes, emotional and mental changes are big as well. 

Relationships undergo big changes, you may become a caregiver for a spouse or older parents, you may be divorced with an empty nest or a widow/widower which may mean adjusting to life on your own after many years as  a couple. Change is difficult, but anybody can adapt if they really want to. 

In a period of change  working with a therapist can help you figure out what you want and need, learn to trust your own judgement, navigate unfamiliar territory and come to terms with life. It gives you the greatest gift of all- acceptance. 

Therapy can create space to explore new identities and make new connections —

Major transitions are part of life. Retirement, an empty nest or the inability to do things you once could can destabilise your sense of self. Feeling disorientated by these changes is not uncommon, living in the “in-between” phase between identities can be uncomfortable. Enter therapy. Therapy can give you a sense of direction as you work on ways to redefine yourself. It gives you the tools to make new connections with other people. A therapist can give you permission to re-evaluate your life and get clear about your options, an unbiased source of validation, support, and compassion during this tumultuous time of change. 

Therapy can support you if you’re grieving a loss —

Loss can happen at any age and stage of life. But the longer you live, the greater the odds of you facing a significant loss. It need not be death, it could be children growing up and moving out of the house, friends moving away, loss of a pet or loved ones passing away. Important and meaningful relationships and phases of your life tend to draw to a natural close. Unfortunately, the gut wrenching feeling of grief is unavoidable. A good therapist will support you and help you process sorrow and regret in a positive and constructive way.

Therapy can be especially beneficial in dealing with the aftermath of COVID-19 —

We’ve been living through uncharted territory for the last three years. These unprecedented times since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic have seen a drastic rise in mental health conditions and the need for therapy. People are unsure, scared, worried, numb and some don’t even know what to feel. We have seen the world be brought to its knees, seen death and loss like no other, experienced pangs of loneliness at a stretch and so many missed opportunities. Dealing with all of this at once can be overwhelming to say the least. Even if you didn’t lose anyone close to you, you might be grieving for other reasons like a missed opportunity, a lost job or just life as we knew it. Grieving takes time. While things are slowly returning to “normal” it is going to take a while to recover from everything that has transpired. 

There are lots of reasons to start therapy, and all of them are equally valid —

Yes, people might be most inclined to reach out to a therapist when they’re in crisis or during stressful life events. But the definition of “stressful life event” is a little different for everyone. We all have unique triggers and life experiences. For example, seeking therapy after the loss of my dog got me more than one raised eyebrow from people I told. It’s also OK to start therapy just because you think you need a little extra help, even if you’re not sure why. Plenty of people do come to therapy to understand themselves better, to work through areas that are more difficult, and to improve their ability to thrive and cope with adversity.

Conclusion —

It is okay to not feel okay. As we age, we tend to develop a better understanding of the world around us and even ourselves but that doesn’t make us invincible to change. 

Whether you’re coping with grief, trauma, relationship issues, change or you just need someone to vent, finding a helpful therapist can make a big difference in your journey.

“I can’t see a way through,” said the boy, 

“Can you see the next step?”

“Yes”

“Just take that,” said the horse.

Quote taken from the book-  The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse by Charlie Mackesy.

The thought of going to therapy might be a hard pill to swallow, but just take it one step at a time. Scheduling an appointment is a great start and take it from there. 

Birthday Predictions – 6th to 12th February 2023

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 Birthday Predictions  – 6th to 12th February 2023

By Chirag Daruwalla – Son of Astrologer Bejan Daruwalla 

 

6th February 

Ganesha says as the economy improves, you benefit from your day off. You may be better off financially if you start new projects and schemes. You can be proud of your children’s achievements. You may be relieved to know that any pending legal issues can be resolved successfully. Patients who have any chronic disease may need to take special care of themselves. The benefits of yoga and meditation are immense. Your financial commitments may increase and there may be good profits.

 

7th February 

Ganesha says your financial condition can improve by getting new sources of income. New agreements can be very beneficial. You may undertake frequent fruitful travels which may yield desired results. You would like to seek blessings from some spiritual being or visit some holy place. Getting the support and benefits of influential people can be the result of your extroverted personality. During this, there is a possibility of transaction of real estate or purchase of a vehicle.

 

8th February 

Ganesha says you are urged not to trust others too much at this time, especially in important matters. It would not be in your best interest to reveal private and confidential information. A sudden influence from a spiritual person can bring amazing changes in your life. In addition to giving you love and attention, your spouse and family may be sympathetic to your concerns. Long-distance travel may take some people abroad. A workplace environment may require you to handle critical tasks with a high degree of responsibility.

 

9th February 

Ganesha says may today be a day to remember, filled with success and luck. Women can get benefit from this time as new opportunities can be found to advance their job prospects. The elders and the younger ones of the family may require a lot of your attention. Your spouse’s health may give you cause for worry and anxiety. Students should focus on their school work and plan for the future. Romance and new relationships are possible for the unmarried.

 

10th February 

Ganesha says today success means being happy in whatever you do. You may get attractive returns on past investments and long pending legal issues may be resolved in your favor. You may receive unexpected financial and kind donations from your entire family and friends. There may be some minor health issues due to stress and tension. You can become more spiritually connected and this can have a profound effect on the way you think and behave.

 

11th February 

Ganesha says it appears that the day can bring awards and accolades to women working in the advertising and marketing industries as well as scientists, lawyers, and writers. As the day progresses, your financial gains may increase, due to which you can spend more on luxuries. Do not ignore medical advice when necessary as health issues can increase anxiety. If you and your family members can communicate better, your family can be happier, more peaceful, and more prosperous.

 

12th February 

Ganesha says this is the ideal time to implement important changes and make a decisive choice today. We can solve issues related to real estate, partnerships, and new businesses. Some positive news is expected from the child side. Highlights today may include remodeling, building, and socializing. Growth and success can come automatically if you focus your efforts. Opportunities for both business and leisure travel abroad may present themselves. Profits can be obtained through selective speculation.

 

Weekly Predictions – 6th to 12th February 2023

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 Weekly Predictions  – 6th to 12th February 2023

By Chirag Daruwalla – Son of Astrologer Bejan Daruwalla

 

Ganesha says luck will be with you this week. Be it love, friendship, or any other relationship, all these will bring happiness and prosperity to your life. Also, as the week progresses, you will find yourself becoming kinder, going beyond your limits to help people. A recent bad incident will allow you to learn from your mistakes, ensuring they won’t happen again. To stay healthy, this week you are advised to pay attention to your diet.

 

Ganesha says students may find this week difficult and complicated. So, they are advised to seek mentorship or counseling to achieve their milestones and the success they were dreaming of academically. You may consider spending some quality time with your family members this week, which will strengthen your bond with them. Overall it is going to be a pleasant experience. Incorporate yoga and exercise in your daily life to stay fit and healthy.

 

Ganesha says at the beginning of this week, you may remain mentally disturbed. It could be because of the past bad experience that you are not able to move forward. Thus, it is advised that you should spend less time worrying and thinking about regrets. Instead, focus on the positive aspects, planning how you can improve your lifestyle. In terms of money, things will be at an average level. In terms of health, you are advised to surround yourself with positive spirits to feel fresh and energetic.

 

Ganesha says this week money will remain for you. You will see some big profits coming your way, thanks to the prudent investments made by you in the past. However, this week your emotional nature can become a matter of concern. Have good control over it otherwise, people can take advantage of it as per their requirements. Some minor problems may arise between married couples which can be easily resolved with proper communication. People suffering from spinal problems are advised not to lift heavy things this week.

 

Ganesha says on the professional front, things are not looking that great for you this week. Due to jealousy, your seniors can create unnecessary trouble for you. All you need to do is stay calm and cool-headed to deal with such situations. Also, be careful with your words and actions this week. Students preparing for medical exams are likely to get good results by the end of this week. Single people can finally meet the love of their life with whom they can think of establishing a relationship.

 

Ganesha says whatever happens to you this week, do not lose hope and faith in yourself. Remember that it will be you who will come up with new ideas and strategies to make things fruitful and better. There may be some ups and downs on both your professional and domestic front. However, there is nothing to worry about as things will soon be back to normal. In terms of love, today you are advised to spend some quality time with your partner. Eat healthily and do early morning exercises to stay fit this week.

 

Ganesha says your focus and concentration will play an important role in deciding how your coming week will be. Thus, despite the odds when you take tests from time to time, make sure that you have a steady focus and confidence. Financially, you are not advised to think about making impulsive decisions as it may lead to some serious monetary losses. If such a situation occurs, you will find yourself stressed which will definitely take a toll on your mental health. Married and committed couples will have a good and prosperous week.

 

Ganesha says instead of making excuses, you will consider making efforts to improve things. Remember that you are not the kind of person who likes to sit back and watch things happen. Rather, you are the kind of person who likes to take responsibility for making things better. So, this is your moment. On the professional front too, you may save the future of a colleague by correcting his mistakes, which may fetch you a lot of respect and appreciation. You may get to hear some good news related to job promotion soon.

 

Ganesha says this week, all you need to do is keep a positive mindset and outlook. By following these you will be able to tackle any kind of challenges that come your way. Your domestic life seems to be wonderfully arranged and you will spend some quality time with them this week. A sudden celebration plan in your family is also on the stars. Newly married couples may experience heated arguments this week. So try to avoid such situations as much as possible this week. On the health front, things are not looking that bad for you.

 

Ganesha says students who are good at their studies will find themselves very close to their goals this week. As a result, you can also carve out some free time for yourself, just to enjoy that time. Your hard work and efforts are already presenting you with some great results. So, keep on maintaining the pace without affecting it. Be careful while stepping on the road this week, as a minor accident can easily disturb your physical health.

 

Ganesha says be honest and transparent with your opinions this week. There will be many occasions where your opinion can be considered very important. So think many times before saying anything about anyone. You will remain a kind person this week, crossing your limits only to help them. However, this act of kindness will give you beneficial results that will make sense in the times to come. Elderly people in your family need to be careful of the cold happening around them.

 

Ganesha says despite today being a good day, you would like to be alone, perhaps far away. You can consider this time to reflect and analyze your past, present, and future. However, do not overthink as it can bring pressure and tension on you which should ideally be avoided. Sportspersons and budding actors will finally get a platform to showcase their talent in front of a huge crowd. Thus, make sure to give your best in whatever work you are involved in this week. In terms of money, things are looking positive for you. Do not neglect your health this week at any cost.

Cancer in Older Adults: Understanding the Symptoms and Treatment

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Marking 4 February as World Cancer Day Dr Suresh Advani takes us through the nitty-gritty of cancer with some valuable insights

Ageing is a biological process that everyone goes through. It is defined as irreversible structural and functional change which occurs at molecular level affecting all organs and it becomes apparent with advanced age and has chronological perspectives. Word Health Organization defines old age as the period of life, which starts from 65 years of age. 

Due to the advancements in medicines, the life expectancy has doubled to 80 years and is continuously increasing to 90 plus, post 19th century. Therefore, we are having prolonged exposure to carcinogenic agents, cumulative DNA damage, Tumour Suppressor Gene Defects, Oncogenic Activation, and attenuation of immunity, which have been held responsible for higher incidence of Cancer in older individuals. Since carcinogenesis is a very long process, emergence of Cancer in advanced ages is possible. It is seen that 60 per cent of cancers originate from etiological factors that are related to ageing. During the ageing process, the biological processes are impacted, due to which there is deterioration of proteins and DNA in cells. Many of these damaged cells result in senescence, wherein there are not growing, but they are metabolically active and capable of causing problems to a person’s health and can result in a person getting affected with the disease. 

‘Senescence’ is known to be a mechanism which protects one’s body against Cancer, and it helps in stopping the dividing of would-be Cancer cells. But this senescence mechanism sometimes fails and does not work, due to which it results in accumulating Cancer-causing cells to mutate and produce the cell growth, which is uncontrollable. Due to this microenvironment, it causes the formation of the Cancer-cells and spread of Cancer in the body. The longer a person lives, the more errors the genes are bound to make, and over time these mutations can lead to Cancer with Oncogenic Driver Mutations.

Beyond these intrinsic cellular changes, the body’s immune system too weakens, it becomes resilient, and is less efficient in detecting and fighting infection & diseases, including Cancer. Hence, care and treatment for older patients with Cancer should be personalized, and with comprehensive geriatric evaluation, risks, and benefits of the available treatment, alternatives should be properly determined. 

Early diagnosis, treatment, and screening programs are known to reduce Cancer burden and it has also helped in decreasing incidence rates of Cancer in the elderly. Geriatric oncology presents unique challenges specific to age, including competing health and socioeconomic factors. Also, age-related changes in tumour biology influences screening, diagnosis, treatment, and outcome. Many other biological aspects of aging are also under investigation, which includes the dysfunction and shortening of Telomeres, which are the specialized DNA sequences at the ends of chromosomes. Telomeres serve as molecular markers of aging and their dysfunction or shortening has been linked to the transformation of normal cells into Cancer cells. Studies of genetic diseases are also helping to improve our understanding of the relationship between aging and Cancer.

Geriatric Cancer is known to exhibit slower growth as this group already has a body, which has a slower rate of cell development than those of young individuals. However, some elderly patients with tumour have worse prognosis because of delayed diagnosis. The most frequent psychological reactions to Cancer are Anxiety and Depression, which is seen in this age group in addition to various comorbidities limiting the organ functional reserves. For older adults undergoing treatment for Cancer, a health measurement tool called a Geriatric Assessment can be an important part of treatment planning. Older patients whose care is guided by geriatric assessment are much less likely to experience serious side effects. Treating Cancer of elderly patients, who often have other health conditions and comorbidities, may limit the use of specific therapies. Doctors may be reluctant to give these geriatric patients potentially beneficial therapies because there isn’t enough evidence to show that the standard dosage can be safely administered, or whether the treatment that is given is likely to improve survival of this age group. Cancer treatment protocols and drugs doses are adjusted accordingly considering the meticulous geriatric assessment.

An unexplained weight loss, fever of unknown origin, backache, headache or seizures or any unusual symptom may mimic Cancer. Awareness towards Cancer would allow us to diagnose in an early stage and possible cure can be achieved. High or rising Serum PSA should be cause of concern and one should get evaluated for ruling out Prostate Cancer. Seven signs and symptoms of Cancer (CAUTION) are well known and should be considered red flags, they as follows:

  1.     Change in bowel or bladder habits
  2.     A sore that does not heal
  3.     Unusual bleeding or discharge
  4.     Thickening or lump in breast or elsewhere
  5.     Indigestion or difficulty in swallowing
  6.     Obvious change in wart or mole
  7.     Nagging cough or hoarseness

General opinion in preventing Cancer involves following a health life by taking measures to improve nutrition, physical activity, and preventing Obesity, among others. The World Cancer Research Foundation assessed that one-third of the Cancer cases in developed countries are overweight or obese, and this is due to lack of physical activity or sufficient nutrition. Thus, it is important to pay attention to a few basic choices of life regarding what you eat, drink and how much you move, as it can make a real difference in your risk of getting Cancer. Cancer can be avoided by lifestyle modifications which are as follows:

  1.   Maintain a healthy body weight
  2.   Restrict intake of processed meat or red meat
  3.   Daily intake of vegetables and fruits
  4.   Restrict alcohol intake, best is to stop
  5.   Avoidance of using tobacco products
  6.   Regular engagement in physical activities (walk for 5 km/day)

Hence, it is crucial to undertake regular self-exams and screenings for cancers, especially Cancer of the skin, Colon, Cervix and Breast. This can help in early diagnosis, which can result in early treatment that is most likely to succeed.

Authored by Dr Suresh Advani, Senior Consultant – Medical Oncology, SL Raheja Hospital, Mahim – A Fortis Associate

Entertainment Review: Pamela, A Love Story

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Pamela, a love story

 

Pamela Anderson, as a Playboy model and Baywatch star, was once a favorite pin-up girl, “the most famous blonde in the world,” as she is described in a Netflix documentary, Pamela, a love story.

 

Today, she is willing to face a camera, without any make-up  and talk candidly about her life, right from a dysfunctional family, child abuse by a babysitter, rape a 12, the sudden rise to fame, the constant hounding by the paparazzi and the infamous sex tape. Shot in and around her lakeside home in Canada, she laughs a lot, and there is no bitterness about the dark bits of her past.

 

She was an inveterate writer of diaries, and collector of home videos, a virtual gold mine for the documentary filmmaker, Ryan White; not to mention that salacious paparazzi interest in her ensured that pretty much everything about her public persona was photographed and recorded.

Born to working class parents in a small Canadian town, Pamela was unashamed about making use of her body to achieve fame; there was an innocence to her, when she answered obnoxious questions from middle-aged, male TV hosts about her breasts. She was disarmingly honest about everything from her boyfriends, to her bottle blonde hair and breast implants.

Because she played the sexy lifeguard, CJ, in Baywatch (that ran from 1989 to 2001), which was back then the most popular TV show in the world (dubbed even in Mandarin), her many romances and impulsive marriage to  Tommy Lee, ‘bad boy’ drummer of Motley Crue, the paparazzi never left her alone, when when she had a miscarriage. It is also probably the reason why her film career was not too successful, and her fame rests on TV series, reality shows and her tumultuous love life. The leaked sex tape, stolen from their safe, and sold to a porn-hungry public in the early days of the internet, gave her an unwanted notoriety for something that was not her or Tommy Lee’s fault. 

She faced the worst kind of misogyny in those politically incorrect times, when nobody wanted to see beyond her bombshell image, the lurid tabloid coverage of her life, and her string of relationships, to give her much credit for her activism and writing (two autobiographies, three novels, non fiction and columns).

Away from her glamorous image, she wants to be seen as a regular woman, who likes being a wife (she married six times and separated from her latest husband, Dan Hayhurst in 2022) and mother (to two sons, Brandon and Dylan).  She is not the stereotypical dumb blonde– she is smart, sensitive, and articulate, in spite of which she is so often misunderstood and mocked in the media.  

Pamela, a love story is a mostly low-key documentary, which mainly serves the purpose of telling viewers not to judge a woman like Pamela Anderson—even when her life looked like it was out of control she made it out with her courage intact. Today, bottle blondes in bikinis do not raise any eyebrows, the Playboy empire has almost been dismantled, and there is worse content on the net than a pirated honeymoon sex tape; but there is still interest in the strange and exciting life of Pamela Anderson.

Solution for spot The Difference #63

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Differences:
1 Star colour
2 Tie Colour
3 Extra File
4 Beard is missing
5 Alphabets
6 Floor number colour

10 non-filmi songs by Lata Mangeshkar

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10 non-filmi songs by Lata Mangeshkar – Narendra Kusnur

February 6 marks one year since the great Lata Mangeshkar passed away. In this column, we specifically focus on her non-film songs, sung in Hindi and allied languages.

The selection is a mix of patriotic tunes, devotional songs, ghazals and motivational numbers. There is no particular order, but we have kept in mind a certain flow. The poet’s name is mentioned with each song.

1 Ae Mere Watan Ke Logo – Kavi Pradeep

Lata first sang this song on January 26, 1963, at New Delhi’s National Stadium in memory of soldiers who had sacrificed their lives in the 1962 Indo-China war. The song brought tears to the eyes of Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, who was in the audience. Kavi Pradeep wrote the words and music was composed by C. Ramchandra.

 

2 Saare Jahaan Se Accha – Muhammad Iqbal

Written by Allama Muhammad Iqbal as a patriotic song for children, ‘Saare Jahaan Se Accha’ was first published in the journal Ittehad in 1904. There were various versions but the one recorded by Lata was composed by maestro Pt Ravi Shankar. The words are, “Saare jahaan se accha, Hindustan hamaara, hum bulbule hain iski, yeh gulsitaan hamaara, hamaara”.

 

3 Main Pardesini Naari Akeli – Sant Surdas

This Surdas bhajan was set to music by Pt Hridaynath Mangeshkar for the 2001 album Meera Soor Kabeera. Lata’s voice and intonation were perfect as she sang, “Main pardesini naari akeli, bin Raghunath, aur na koi, maat pita na saheli”. The other Surdas bhajans in the album were ‘Dinanath Ab Baari Tumhari’ and ‘Ab Main Nachya Thakyo’.

 

4 Chala Wahi Des – Meerabai 

Lata showed immense control in the high register on this Meera bhajan, which was the title track of her 1974 album. Hridaynath Mangeshkar composed the music. The words were, “Chala wahi des, chala wahi des, kaho kusumbi saari rangwa, saari rangwa, kaho to bhagva bhes, chala wahi des’. Minimal orchestration was used. Lata had earlier recorded a popular album of Meera bhajans in 1968.

 

5 Baaje Re Muraliya – Pt Narendra Sharma 

This Krishna bhajan was recorded in duet with classical vocalist Pt Bhimsen Joshi in the 1985 album Ram Shyam Gun Gaan. Pt Narendra Sharma wrote the lines, “Baaje re muraliya baaje, adhar dhare Mohan murali par, hoth pe maaya biraaje”. Music was by Shrinivas Khale and Anil Mohile, and use of bansuri was prominent.

 

6 Hazaaron Khwahishen Aisi – Mirza Ghalib

Written by Mirza Ghalib, this ghazal has been sung by numerous singers, with Jagjit Singh’s rendition being very popular. Lata recorded it under Pt Hridaynath Mangeshkar’s direction in 1969. The words were, “Hazaaron khwahishen aisi ke har khwahish pe dam nikle, bahut nikle mere armaan lekin phir bhi kam nikle”.

 

7 Dard Se Mera Daaman Bharde – Qateel Shifai

In 1991, Lata recorded the album Sajda with ghazal maestro Jagjit Singh. ‘Dard Se Bharde’ was a solo song written by Pakistani poet Qateel Shifai, with Jagjit composing the tune. Lata’s voice was enchanting as she sang, “Dard se mera daaman bharde ya Allah, phir chaahe deewana karde ya Allah”.

 

8 Aao Man Ki Gaanthein Khole – Atal Behari Vajpayee

In 2004, Lata released an album of seven songs containing the poetry of former Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee. Music was by Mayuresh Pai. This song ‘Aao Man Ki Gaanthein Khola’, as its title suggested, talked about opening one’s mind. Another positive poem was titled ‘Aao Phir Se Diya Jalaaye’.

 

9 Thumak Chalat Ramchandra – Sant Tulsidas

This is one of Lata’s popular Ram bhajans, and was written by Tulsidas. The words are, “Thumak chalat Ramchandra, baajat painjaniyaan”. Music was by Pt Hridaynath Mangeshkar again. The song has been recorded by many others, including Anup Jalota, Anuradha Paudwal and flautist Ronu Majumdar.

 

10 Om Jai Jagdish Hare – Pt Shardha Ram Phillauri

This aarti was written by Shardha Ram Phillauri as a dedication to Lord Vishnu, but has also been sung as a motivational song. The main lines are, “Om jai Jagdish hare, swami jai Jagdish hare, bhakt janon ke sankat, daas janon ke sankat, kshan mein door kare, Om jai Jagdish hare”. The chorus, percussion and manjira in the 1983 Lata version give it a temple effect.

While this list focuses on Hindi and related languages, there are many songs Lata has recorded in regional languages. Topmost are her Marathi songs, which include the Ganesh aarti ‘Sukhakarta Dukhaharta’. That would make another list.

 

How to stop overeating

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How to stop overeating

Retraining our brains to ditch bad habits is a task in itself but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible. Here are some top tips that will help you, if you struggle with overeating, writes Vinita Alvares Fernandes

Growing up I remember my mother constantly telling me that my eyes were bigger than my stomach. I would be so hungry, load my plate with food, feel like a stuffed turkey and then wonder why I overate. 

How much is truly too much? 

If you have reached the brink and you need to cut back, how do you? 

Eating too much at once or constantly going over the calorie limit throughout the day can be a hard habit to break, but it must be broken. 

 

Signs of overeating may include —

  • Eating beyond the point of being full. 
  • Finding yourself mindlessly eating because you’re bored, distracted, happy or sad. Basically, eating for reasons other than to fuel your body. 
  • Experiencing physical symptoms after eating. Like nausea, cramping, abdominal discomfort, gas, bloating, acidity or heartburn. 

These are the short-term signs of overeating, but there are long-term signs too, like gaining unwanted weight, trouble losing those extra kilos and digestive issues. 

 

Retraining our brains to ditch bad habits is a task in itself but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible. Here are some top tips that will help you, if you struggle with overeating —

  • Portion control- Portion size and control is critical. Keep your eyeballs in check and you will see things fall into place. Familiarise yourself with recommended portion sizes and hold yourself accountable. 

Ways to trick your brain into thinking you’ve eaten a full plate of food:

 We are conditioned to clean our plates from childhood, so it is a tendancy to fill your plate with food as we tend to eyeball our portion sizes according to how big the plate is instead of our hunger and then force ourselves to finish all that is in the plate irrespective of if we are full or not. The way to overcome this is by eating in a smaller plate or bowl. Your plate size can tremendously help you stick to more appropriate portion sizes and avoid overeating. When you shave your meal in half from the beginning, you’ll be pleasantly surprised that it’s enough to fill you up. You can always go for another helping if you truly aren’t full. 

NOTE: the norm is one fist full as snacks and two fists full for meals.

  • Be mindful of why you’re eating and what you’re eating- Lots of us eat for comfort, to reward ourselves or make ourselves feel better. Unfortunately, this can lead to vicious cycles of emotional eating instead of eating to fuel your body. Before you eat, notice if you are actually hungry or not. There are countless reasons that will make you want to eat but there is one one reason that matters- you need to nourish and energise your body. Pay attention to your body’s cues and use food as what it’s meant to be- a way of nourishing your body and nothing else. 
  • Include a fibre source with meals and snacks- FIbre makes you feel full. FIbre helps you avoid overeating. Choosing high fibre foods will keep you feeling satiated for longer, reduce the amount of food you consume and help you avoid overeating.  
  • Check in as you chew- Do you tend to space out while you eat and just go hand to mouth until there’s nothing left on your plate? It’s time to pay attention while you eat. 
  • Pay attention to your plate and pay attention to your body. 
  • Remember, you are eating with the intention of feeling good when you’re finished, not feeling stuffed. 
  • If you start to feel full, resist the urge to clean your plate. Stop where you feel comfortably full and wait for 10 minutes. 
  • If you still feel hungry then continue eating, you’ll be shocked to realise that you’re fuller than you thought. 


  • Avoid skipping meals- Intermittent fasting, a diet trend at the moment, can lead to a feast of famine mindset which defeats the purpose of intermittent fasting and puts you in the express lane to overeating. Eat breakfast, lunch, dinner and healthy snacks in between to tide you over. If you’re starving, you will likely overeat. Eat regular meals.
  • Snack happy and healthy- Eating healthy snacks is a great way to avoid scarfing down everything in sight. A healthy snack of protein and good fat will help you feel fuller for longer and keep your meals in check. 
  • Stay hydrated- We often mistake thirst for hunger. We think our body is asking for food when all it really needs is a glass of water. Staying hydrated throughout the day avoids wrong hunger cues, keeps you hydrated and keeps unhealthy food cravings at bay. 
  • Slow down- Eat slowly. DO NOT inhale your food. Not overeating simply means actually putting your fork and spoon down when you’re approaching the tummy full situation.
  • Know and limit the foods that are easiest to overeat- Everyone has their own food weakness- things they just can’t resist. Most of us tend to overeat calorie-dense or processed foods (or treats). Be sure to avoid regularly gorging down on these empty calories. Pinpointing and knowing your trigger foods can help you avoid overeating. 
  • Eat at home- For the most part restaurants have large portions full of butter and batter to make the food taste better. Eating large, calorie laden foods on a daily basis will make overeating a worse issue. Eating home cooked meals, where you know what’s going into your body, is most definitely the healthier choice. 

 

      NOTE: All restaurants, five star to one star recycle oil, this is poison for the body. Eat at home regularly so you can monitor your quality and quantity of oil.

  • Keep a food journal- Keeping track of what you eat using a food diary can help you avoid overeating. You don’t have to be so strict where you manage every single calorie going into your body, but an overall picture of your food day can help you monitor your meals, reduce your portions, avoid overeating and even aid weight loss. 

 

Conclusion —

  • Do you struggle with self control and find yourself reaching for seconds even though you’re full? 

Chances are you’ve got a case of overeating. 

  • Do you find it to be a daily occurrence?

It’s time to take action. 

  • Do you follow crash diets?

They won’t help overeating in the long run. 

Long-term lifestyle changes are the way to go. 

Creating a balanced relationship with food can prevent nasty habits like overeating. 

Stop the cycle of overeating once and for all by adopting some of these simple and doable tips. 

Focus on sustainability.

 

Break up with loneliness

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Loneliness is a common feeling and an often misused word.

Have you ever wondered what loneliness really is? 

If you think it’s being alone and having to spend time with just yourself, Well think again!

Loneliness is when you feel distressed because you’re alone. You feel socially isolated and you crave to be around people but it just doesn’t seem to happen. You can feel lonely even when you’re around other people and you can be alone without feeling lonely. Going through feelings of loneliness for a long period of time can be emotionally draining and it can even take a toll on you physically. 

There are steps you can take to help feel more connected and less lonely — 

Loneliness can affect you mentally and physically — 

Loneliness can be tied to a number of mental and physical issues. Due to the need for physical distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic, feelings of loneliness have been exacerbated, almost creating a pandemic of its own. Everyone feels lonely sometimes, yearning for connection. Unsurprisingly, loneliness does increase your risk of developing mood disorders like depression and anxiety but it can also affect you physically by putting you at risk of high blood pressure, heart disease and stroke. Loneliness should be taken seriously and addressed before it takes over your life like an unwelcome guest who just doesn’t want to leave. 

Social isolation versus loneliness —

Loneliness is different from social isolation. Loneliness is a feeling of being alone, whereas  social isolation is a lack of social connection to others. People who interact with others can still feel lonely. 

Loneliness among the over 60s — 

Loneliness is a serious problem among older adults. A lot of senior citizens also experience social isolation which can lead to deepening feelings of loneliness and aggravate health conditions. Loneliness is a predator. It causes functional decline and even early death in adults who suffer from it, untreated. 

How to break up with feeling lonely —

It’s important to recognise and take loneliness seriously. While it may seem like a simple emotion that you can shake off, it does have a tendency to attack when you least expect it. The reality is that it can have a huge impact on your overall health and it must be addressed. 

 

Things to do when you feel lonely —

  • Reframe the argument- Casting a different light on what it means to be alone can  make it easier to navigate loneliness. Loneliness happens when your needs for social interaction and human connection remain unfulfilled. Different people have different needs, so it is a different experience for everyone.

Instead of being upset about not having Saturday night plans, think of it as an opportunity to curl up on your couch, sip on a cup of tea, read a book or watch a movie and enjoy your own company. TIme alone, with yourself, creates space for self reflection, self discovery and the opportunity to be creative. 

  • Fill your house with sound- Music heals everything. There is a song for every mood and every emotion. If you feel alone and lonely, fill your space with music. Music is a great distraction and escape. 
  • Practice gratitude- Try to notice and highlight the positives in your life instead of dwelling on the negatives. Practicing gratitude daily can help you feel better and enjoy the small wins in life. 

Gratitude exercise — as soon as you wake up every morning clear your mind of all thoughts, smile and Thank your God or the universe for three things in your life you are grateful for. At the end of each day when you lay your head on your pillow, again give gratitude for three things you have received in the day.

  • Make the most of your interactions- Simply spending time around others won’t always relieve loneliness. The interactions you share with people must be meaningful. The quality of your interactions can make all the difference. That’s why you might feel lonely in a large group of casual acquaintances but fulfilled by an evening with your closest friends or family. 
  • Go outside- A change of environment can distract you from the gnawing feeling of being lonely. A walk outside in the fresh air and being in nature can release endorphins and serotonin which will make you feel better. 
  • Spend time with animals- Animals may not be able to talk but they make the best mates. The presence of a pet can lift your spirits and relieve stress. Having your pet around you is all you really need. Every animal lover and owner can vouch for this. 
  • Get some sleep- A good night’s sleep can make everything better. You wake up refreshed and rejuvenated, ready to take on a new day. 
  • Think about what triggers your loneliness- Identifying what triggers your loneliness can help you address these feelings and overcome them. 
  • Remind yourself it isn’t permanent and reach out for help- However overwhelming it may feel, loneliness won’t last forever. Keep reminding yourself of this whenever these feelings take over. If loneliness leaves you feeling very low and hopeless, try reaching out to a friend, family member or even a mental health professional. They will be able to give you some relief, help you work through these feelings and even give you a new perspective on things. 

 

Conclusion —

Loneliness can strike at any age and have different triggers across our lifetime. The best way to respond to loneliness is to try and reconnect. Focus on things that make you feel happy, grounded and fulfilled. Focus on nurturing important and fulfilling relationships in your life. Loneliness is more about your state of mind than the number of appointments on our calendar or friends on social media. It’s time to #BreakUp with loneliness. 

 

Ministry for the Elderly could become a reality

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BUDGET 2023: HelpAge India brings urgent attention to elderly income and health security with special consideration to needs of older women and asks for a separate Ministry for Elderly

New Delhi/Mumbai

As the government envisions India of 2047 and plans for Amrit Kaal, building an age friendly society is imperative. HelpAge India, a non-governmental organisation that works for the needs and concerns of the elderly, submitted its budgetary recommendations to the Hon’ble Finance Minister, Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman with an ask to set up a special Ministry for the elderly and considering measures for immediate relief in areas of income, health security, caregiving and inclusion of older persons in exiting govt. schemes with special focus on older women and the oldest old.

 

The need for immediate action, inclusion and implementation towards elder care measures is now more than ever crucial in the post pandemic context, which brought elder vulnerability to fore. India with a current estimated elder population of 140 million, will be bracing for rapid ageing in the next three decades, with its elderly population set to explode by 20 percent by 2047. Immediate measures need to be put in place, to address their socio-economic and health needs, which require a substantial allocation of resources. We request enhancing of old age pension to minimum of Rs. 3000 per month, with priority on universal coverage for older women and oldest old, incentivize caregiving by providing tax benefits to family care givers, strengthen existing financial, healthcare and social care systems with sufficient allocation of funds and urge the government to set up a Ayushman (Longevity) Ministry for Elderly for addressing the multifarious elder issues and managing the programs of elderly,” said Rohit Prasad, CEO, HelpAge India.

 

The pandemic identified elders as one of the most vulnerable segments of the population, the governments’ vaccination drive which prioritized elders is highly commendable. It also highlights the immediacy of putting effective healthcare systems in place for this vulnerable section.

 

The recently published findings of Longitudinal Study of Ageing in India (LASI) highlighted the hard reality elders face vis-a-vis health security. Around 70% of elderly faced chronic diseases, around a quarter of those 60 and above, suffer from multi-morbidities (23%) and 11% have at least one form of impairment. This makes them more susceptible to new diseases and viruses, and they require continued care. Some form of health insurance in India covers just about 26% of households.

 

The recommendations made by HelpAge to enhance elder health security include: –

 

Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojna (PMJAY) enrolment drive for the elderly, particularly elderly women, the oldest adults, and the disabled elderly. While PMJAY is an inclusive health assurance scheme and covers the elderly, a special focus/campaign on covering eligible elderly may be considered, as they face a much higher risk of hospitalisation, which is the main focus of PMJAY. Except for income tax payers, all of the nation’s 80+ elderly population to be covered by PMJAY.

The National Program for Health Care of the Elderly (NPHCE), which is the only geriatric care programme (launched in 2010) for elderly, needs immediate attention. With need for accelerated and prioritised implementation of the program across all districts. It would perform better if the budgetary allocation was done specifically for this unique initiative rather than putting funds in a “flexi-pool.”

The organization also made a strong case for incentivizing care giving for elderly within the family fold by recommending introduction of additional limits beyond the basic tax exemption for family caregivers such as an amount of Rs.3.5 lakh (beyond the exemption limit of Rs.2.5 lakhs) for those tax payers taking care of parents/in-laws up to 80 years and an amount of Rs.5.5 lakhs for taking care of those above 80 years. This is to be claimed by any one of the adult children taking care of the elderly. 

Recommendation was made for a new provision for special Care Allowance for the Women who take care of elderly parents and older women who care for the family. Women from low-income families may be selected for this scheme.   

On the income and livelihood side, as per LASI, 36% of the elderly were working – much higher in rural areas (40%) than urban areas (26%), and mostly in unorganized sector. Only about 30% of the rural elderly from BPL households were recipients of old-age pension benefits. 

“Two major areas this year’s budget needs to address, is the growing feminisation of the ageing population and disproportionate increase in the numbers of the oldest old with focus on older women, who need to be enrolled in some of the landmark schemes such as PMJAY and given priority coverage within the Old Age Pension scheme. There is also an urgent need to put long-term care systems in place. Women in particular contribute disproportionately to caregiving. They remain major caregivers but themselves struggle in later years. It is time that we recognize the fact and take steps to enable them to contribute successfully to society and live independently,” says Anupama Datta, Head – Policy Research & Advocacy, HelpAge India.

‘Poverty in old age’ is a major challenge that has been further impacted by the pandemic. The earlier SECC report of the Ministry of Rural Development had identified 50% of the elderly as poor. HelpAge’s report during the pandemic revealed that 65% poor elder livelihoods were impacted and they had no work or faced a drastic loss in their wages, says Mr. Prakash Narayan Borgaonkar, Head – Maharashtra & Goa, HelpAge India.

He also shared the recommendations made by HelpAge to enhance elder income security therefore included: 

Universalise Old Age Pension to include older women and oldest old. The desirable monthly allowance to be Rs. 3000 per month, with Central Government taking the lead in defining a basic minimum social pension floor across the country. A minimum increase in the Central Government contribution to the National Social Assistance Program (NSAP) is required from the current Rs 200-Rs.500, which has not been revised over the last 14 years, to Rs. 1000 per month per beneficiary for those 60 and older and Rs 1500 per month per beneficiary for those 80 and older. Currently, the old-age pension averages around Rs 500 in most states.

Raise income tax exemption limit for Senior Citizens up to Rs 10 lakhs, currently being 3 lakh for those 60 plus and 5 Lakh for those 80 plus. Higher limits to be particularly considered for older women (60+) and all senior citizens in the oldest old segment.

To ensure standard of living for the middle-class elderly, bank fixed deposit (FD) interest rates should be enhanced for senior citizens, and their income should be tax-exempt as this is their mainstay in many cases. Currently under Section 80TTB, interest up to Rs. 50,000 earned by the senior citizen is eligible for deduction. The limit may be increased to Rs.1,00,000.

Considering that some segments of elderly have to work to survive, include poor older persons in MGNREGA (the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act, 2005, which gives guarantee of a hundred days of wage employment in a financial year to adult members of a rural household who demand employment and are willing to do unskilled manual work) and keep a reservation of at least 5% of the jobs for them. Make special budgetary allocation for inclusion of older persons particularly older women. Consider tax incentives to employers who continue to employ workers over 65 years.

Therefore, there is a need to urgently put in place necessary socio-economic and health security umbrellas, which will need enhanced allocation of resources under existing Government Schemes such as under the NAPSrC (National Action Plan for Senior Citizens) with addition of a special scheme for Multi-Service Day Care Centres in all districts with facilities for day care, medical, physical fitness, recreation and reskilling. 

Allocate substantial funds for effective implementation of the provisions and increase in public awareness about the landmark Maintenance and Welfare of Parents and Senior Citizens’ Act ensuring security & dignity of elder lives. 

Meanwhile, strengthening Elder-Self-Help-Groups (ESHGs) a concept pioneered by HelpAge India to provide livelihood and income opportunities for the poor elderly, with enhanced allocations made available for poor older persons in rural areas.

Post pandemic, the digital divide has starkly increased for the elders. While all systems (banking, utility, health, financial and other transactions) are getting digitally enabled under the Digital India/ eGovernance program, elders are left struggling to cope with the new technology. HelpAge strongly recommends a digital empowerment initiative especially for elders be launched under the Digital India/ CSC/Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology (MeitY) with requisite allocation of funds. 

Post the pandemic elder vulnerability has heightened and the need to take immediate action for long term sustainability of elder lives so they can live life with dignity and care, is now imperative more than ever.

About HelpAge India:

HelpAge India is a leading charitable organization working with and for older people in India for the past 45 years. It runs healthcare, age care and livelihood programs throughout the country & advocates strongly for the cause of the elderly and their rights. It also informs and advises the Government in formation of policy related to the elderly. In disaster situations, it looks not only at relief, but also rehabilitation measures, so elders are left empowered and are able to self-sustain themselves in the long run. 

It was one of the first organizations to hit the ground with the onset of the Covid 19 pandemic and reach out to the vulnerable elders and their community, working throughout the lockdown phases in reaching the unreached. HelpAge India was recently honoured with the ‘UN Population Award 2020’ a first for an Indian institution, for its exemplary work in the field of ageing, relief efforts work during the Covid 19 pandemic and recognition of the organization’s outstanding contribution to population issues.

 

Health benefits of Pistachios

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Vinita Alvares Fernandes tells us why eating a handful of these nuts daily will boost our overall well-being

Historically the oldest nut, pistachios are a member of the cashew family. They tend to grow in drylands in warmer climates. With hard white covering around them (shell) and a reddish-pinkish-coloured thin skin around the green kernels, you can never mistake these nutritious, pleasing to the eye nuts . 

Also known as ‘pista,’ pistachio nuts are full of healthy goodness. It may not have the quintessential nut crunch, but pistachios are a delicious snack to add to your diet. Not everything healthy and satiating is supposed to be tasteless. And one such option is the flavoursome pistachio nuts. 

 

Let’s take a look at some of the health benefits pistachios have to offer — 

  • Pistachios are loaded with nutrients- Pistachios are oozing with nutritious wonderfulness. Full of potassium, fibre, protein and vitamin B6, pistachios are excellent for health. Notably, pistachios are one of the most vitamin B6-rich foods available. 


  • High in antioxidants and boosts the immune system- Antioxidants are important for your health and overall immunity. They prevent cell damage and protect your body against diseases. Pistachios are a good source of antioxidants, more so than other varieties of nuts and seeds. The antioxidants and nutrients found in pistachios help the body fight infections, boost the immune system and keep the body protected.


  • Low in calories yet high in protein- Including nuts in your diet can be tricky because they are high in calories. Well, I’m here to give you some exciting news. Pistachios are among the lowest calorie nuts! What’s better is that protein comprises around 14% of their calorie content. Pistachios are also rich in essential amino acids which our bodies are unable to produce and must be sought through our diet. All in all, please add pistachios to your diet. You will not regret it. 


  • Eating pistachios aids weight loss- Despite being an energy-dense food, nuts are very weight loss-friendly. Pistachios are rich in fibre and protein which increases your feelings of fullness and helps you eat less. Another contributing factor to pistachios’ weight loss magic is that its fat content is not fully absorbed. That is why pistachios are one of the best snacking options. 


  • Pistachios keep the nervous system safe- Pistachio is a good source of vitamin B6 which supports the formation of myelin. Myelin forms a protective shield around the nerves, which in turn protects the nervous system, boosts its functioning and keeps it safe. Eating pistachios also helps calm the nerves.


  • Promote healthy gut bacteria-  Pistachios are high in fibre which moves through your digestive system, mostly undigested. Some fibre does get digested by the good bacteria in your gut, acting as prebiotics. Fibre is essential for healthy digestion and pistachios are full of fibre. So when you put two and two together- you get a healthy gut. 


  • Pistachio keeps your heart healthy- Your heart loves pistachios. Adding this green pellet of goodness to your diet can change your heart’s life. Pistachio is good at controlling cholesterol levels which helps prevent heart diseases. Pistachio prevents overeating and controls the level of calories in the body. Pistachios also seem to lower blood pressure more than other nuts. The presence of vitamin B6 in the pistachio ensures that there is better and faster production of haemoglobin in the body. Pistachios equal a happy and healthy heart. 


  • Pistachios make hair better- Eating pistachio helps make your hair stronger and shinier. Pistachios are rich in biotin which helps combat hair loss, nourishes dry hair and makes the hair strands more flexible. Pistachios are also packed with fatty acids that boost hair growth.


  • Improves vision- We all know that regular consumption of pistachios helps improve your eyesight. Great, that’s all I wanted to reiterate! 


  • Improves brain health- The nutrients in pistachios help supply oxygen to the bloodstream. More oxygen means better blood flow which also means better and healthier brain function. 


  • Eating pistachios will help lower your blood sugar levels- The high carb content of pistachios gets balanced out by its low glycemic index which can help promote healthy blood sugar levels. Pistachios are quite effective in regulating blood sugar levels because of its nutritious nature. 


  • Prevents premature ageing- Pistachios moisturise and nourish skin. This promotes skin elasticity, promotes anti ageing and helps the skin look naturally refreshed and younger. 

 

Delicious and fun to eat —

Pistachios are a versatile nut which can be enjoyed in so many ways. 

  • You can eat it on its own as a snack in between meals
  • Add it to a salad for some extra crunch. 
  • Some delicious and green-coloured desserts are made thanks to pistachio. Pistachio gelato, cakes, cookies or dessert crust. 

 

P.S. Nutritionists advise drinking plenty of water after eating pistachios because they are dense and heavy on the stomach.

Be sure not to over do. A handful of pistas a day is plenty to keep you going. 

Bone cold? Here are some solutions

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 On 28 Jan, 2023, Seniors Today hosted their weekly Health Live webinar with Dr Siddhart Yadav who spoke on and answered questions about orthopaedic problems among the elderly in winters. 

 

About Dr Siddhart Yadav

 

Dr Siddhart Yadav is an Orthopaedic & Joint Replacement Surgeon at the Apollo Hospital, Mumbai with nearly 25 years experience.

He has done his Masters in Orthopedic Surgery from MGM Medical College, Indore and trained in Joint Replacement Surgeries for three years under the guidance of late Prof KT Dholakia at Bombay Hospital-Mumbai. He was further intensively trained for One year in Hip & Knee Replacement Surgeries at renowned Hospitals in Germany, USA & Austria.

He has done special training in Un-cemented Primary / Revision Hip Replacement & Computer Assisted Surgeries in Tubingen, Germany.

He has worked at Harvard Medical School, Boston & Beth Israel Medical Center, New York and was trained in the latest Primary / Revision Knee Replacement, Mobile Bearing, High Flexion, Uni Knee Replacement & Cartilage Repair Surgeries.

He was also awarded prestigious A.O. International Fellowship (FASIF) at University Hospital Graz, Austria and learned the latest techniques in complex fracture Surgeries.

He is also a member of Indian Orthopaedic Association (IOA), World Orthopaedic Concern (WOC), Bombay Orthopaedic Society (BOS) & Indian Society of Hip & Knee Surgeons (ISHKS).

He has presented and published various scientific papers and is a regular Faculty speaker in various National Conferences. In the last 25 years, Dr Yadav has gained enormous experience in Orthopaedic and Joint Replacement Operations.

He is performing all the latest techniques in Knee, Hip, Shoulder, Elbow Replacement, Minimal invasive surgeries, Complex Fracture Fixation, Revision Joint Replacements and Cartilage Repair Operation with consistent good results.

 

During the winter season, as the ambient temperature drops below 20°C we tend to face a few orthopaedic complaints such as joint pain, knee pain, increased back pain, stiffness in the joints and muscle cramps. 

 

These complaints are more common during the winter since due to the low temperatures- especially when the temperature drops by 10°C – it also leads to a change in the atmospheric pressure. 

Furthermore, during the winter season our physical activity is reduced as compared to the warmer seasons and are thus exposed to less sunlight. 

Due to low temperature, there is a reduction in the circulation of blood to our joints, muscles and tissues. And also due to the change in the weather along with the change in the atmospheric pressure, the pressure on our joints- especially if our joints are already arthritic or undergoing early degenerative changes- is increased. 

The inactivity or reduced activity leads to stiffness in the joints. 

The reduced exposure to sun due to fewer hours in the sun either due to inactivity or foggy days can lead to Vit D deficiency. 

 

Our body cannot make Vit D, we need a minimum of 10 minutes of exposure to sunlight to produce Vit D. Vit D is also important because it helps in the absorption of Calcium and deposition in the bones. Vit D is also important for adequate muscular activity. Deficiency of Vit D can also cause lethargy. 

 

Here is how you can deal with harsh winters and keep your bones strong and healthy: 

  • Stay warm. Wear woolen socks when you’re sleeping at night. Cover your feet, head and joints properly
  • Exercise regularly- Fix a time and make a routine out of indoor walking, easy exercises and stretching activities to ensure that all your joints are moving. This keeps your joints from stiffening. 
  • Avoid gaining weight. Knee joint is very sensitive to weight. For example if you put on 2kgs, the pressure on your knees will increase 4 fold. This also increases the pressure on your spine and leads to back aches.
  • Eating a healthy and nutritious diet- consume food items like ghee, nuts, food items rich in omega 3 fatty acids, Vit B12, Vit D. If these are not readily available, take supplements for the same.
  • During winters, our water consumption drastically reduces. This is because in winters we do not perspire and thus we do not feel the need to consume water. For the healthy functioning of the body, we need to consume at least 2l of oral fluids per day. And we should not stop that during the winter season either. We need to keep our body hydrated because dehydration can have I’ll effects on our kidneys, muscles and overall functioning of all the systems. 
  • Hot water fomentation and massage to avoid stiffness 

 

Vit D supplements are available in different forms to consume such as sachets, granules, capsules, etc. but the main component in all forms is the same – Cholecalciferol.

If you are taking Vit D supplements in granules/ sachet form it is advised that you mix it and take it with a cup of milk. This is because it is a fat soluble vitamin, which when consumed with water does not dissolve or get absorbed. 

If you are taking Vit D supplements in the form of capsules you can take it with water 

If you are taking Vit D supplements in liquid form, it is already in a fat soluble mixture so you can consume it directly. 

Each individual should take anywhere between 6-8 lakh IU of Vit D in a year. Avoid exceeding 10 lakh IU in a year because this can have a harmful effect on your kidneys. 

Avoid Vit D injections as far as you can.

 

Weekly Predictions – 30th January to 5th February 2023 By Chirag Daruwalla

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Weekly Predictions  – 30th January to 5th Febeuary 2023 By Chirag Daruwalla – Son of Astrologer Bejan Daruwalla

 

Aries

Ganesha says this this week, the stars will be giving favorable economic conditions to deal with the respective economic sectors. In such a situation, the status will remain in related work and business. That is, this week will be full of opportunities to move fast on the path of development. On the other hand, there will be pleasant opportunities to make a name and identity in the related work and business world. This week’s stars will be good from the beginning in terms of health. But in the middle of the week, there will be a continuous success in the real estate sector. Sweetness can come in love relationships. so diligent effort may be needed. By the way, in the third part of the week, the brightness of the face will increase again. In this way, you will be able to get rid of diseases and pains. However, on the last days of the week, there will be a need to show more promptness in completing the work related to the family. Along with your own health, you will have to pay attention to the health of other family members.

 

Taurus

Ganesha says this week, discussions will be held with the concerned companies to increase the scope of capital investment. In such a situation, talks can be intensified to buy the stake of the concerned companies. This week’s stars will be somewhat weak in terms of health. Therefore, pay full attention to your food and drink. During this, the work of some far-flung areas will be expected to be completed. Therefore, there will be a need to show more promptness. On the other hand, there can be moments of love between partners in love relationships. But in the middle of the week, health will be flourishing. If there are any diseases and pains, they will stay away. If you want to organize matrimonial and religious functions in the family, then you will be successful. However, in the third part of the week, there will be a need to show more proactivity in completing the work related to real estate. On the other hand, in the last days of the week, there will be success at every step in the fields of sports, films, arts, and medicine. Love relations will be sweet. But there can be some tension from relatives.

Gemini

Ganesha says this week, the movement of the stars will increase material comforts and give the gift of positive changes in economic policy. In such a situation, the standard of living in the family will be pleasant. There will be a period of pleasant dialogues between siblings. As a result, there will be a period of progress in purchasing any desired item and decorating important aspects related to work and business. However, in the middle of this week, you will be able to buy stakes from any public and private sector company on a large scale. Same again from the third part of the week, the movement of stars will give auspicious and positive results. In such a situation, there will be moments of happiness in the courtyard of married life. If you are eligible for marriage or are engaged in finalizing the marriage arrangements. So there will be a period of progress. On the other hand, on the last days of the week, there will be sweetness in love affairs. Will be able to buy any real estate.

Cancer

Ganesha says the movement of the stars of this week will give great success in the economic sectors. In such a situation, your happiness and satisfaction will increase. If you are going to work on the political and diplomatic front, then due to the influence of global conditions, you will keep moving fast on the path of development. But there can be deep tensions between the wife and the children in some matters. So don’t weaken your understanding. However, the process of earning and raising money will be fruitful in the middle of the week. If you are interested in love affairs, there will be opportunities for sweetness. There will be a message of laughter and happiness from the child’s side. However, there will be a challenge to increase work and business on the last days of the week. During this time the economic expenditure will remain increased. If you are engaged in buying shares of a company, you will be successful. But this week’s stars will be somewhat weak in terms of health. But in the last days of the week, there will be a positive atmosphere in the areas related to health and livelihood.

Leo

Ganesha says the stars of this week will give auspicious and positive results in the respective political and social life. If you are sitting in a competitive position, then you can make comprehensive changes in domestic policies to increase investment and employment in related areas. Will remain pleasant and luxurious in terms of health. But in this direction, you have to walk with full promptness. If you are engaged in completing any matrimonial and religious works, then there will be desired opportunities. In the middle part of this week again the movement of stars will give desired progress in work and business. Very possible, can be nominated for some big responsibility. On the other hand, in the third part of the week, there will be the best kind of success in the economic sphere. There will be a gift of sweetness in love relationships. But in the last days of the week, fame and fame will increase.

Virgo

Ganesha says this week, there will be a continuous auspicious and positive atmosphere in related court cases. Due to this, there can be a gift of success at every step.. Therefore, do not hesitate to continue the efforts. On the other hand, in the areas of livelihood, you will have to travel and migrate to far-flung areas. If you are engaged in promoting capital investment. So you will be successful, but there will be chances of some ups and downs in your health. However, in the second part of the week, you will be able to finalize the works of any religion and charity. On the other hand, in the third part of the week, there will be possibilities of moving forward with intensity in the study of related subjects. Due to which the body and mind will be happy. But some will be worried about the child side. On the other hand, for sweetness in love relations, we will have to walk more actively. Although there will be tension in some things.

Libra

Ganesha says this week there can be moments of laughter and happiness in the courtyard of married life. In such a situation, the body and mind will remain happy. This week, the campaign to encourage work and business will be fruitful. Because due to the influence of global conditions, there will be a period of continuous progress.If you want to go for an interview you will be successful. But in the second part of the week, there will again be a period of challenges in money matters. In such a situation, you will be constantly worried. There can be a period of continuous success in the areas of livelihood. But in terms of health, diseases and pain and pain in the genitals will remain troubling. So don’t weaken your understanding. So it will be good. In a love relationship, there can be deep tensions between the partners on some matters. So don’t weaken your understanding. However, on the last days of the week, the movement of stars will give auspicious and positive results.

Scorpio

Ganesha says in this week, there will be opportunities to collect the means of physical happiness and to use them properly. If you are looking for employment somewhere, there will be opportunities for desired growth. Profit in capital investment can be made. In love relations, you will be troubled due to deep tension in some matters between the partners. However, you will need to walk in this direction with full promptness. There will be more activism in the areas of livelihood. If you are looking to go somewhere for education and training, then this week’s stars will give positive results. In the middle of this week, the movement of stars will make the garden of married life fragrant. A small guest will be the one who fills the soul with happiness. But in the last days of the week, some extra time will have to be given in re-working and raising the business. However, during this time the opposing side will dominate.

Sagittarius

Ganesha says the movements of the stars of this week will give an auspicious and positive atmosphere both from outside and inside in the related work and business. However, this week’s stars will be somewhat weak in terms of health. So don’t weaken your understanding. So it will be good. But again in the middle of the week, the movement of stars will be good for completing important tasks related to my career. If you are engaged in the manufacture of mathematical science, medicine, research, and medicine. So there can be opportunities for desired progress. At the same time, there will be progress in the preparation of civil services at every step. There will be a breeze of sweetness in personal relationships. On the other hand, in the last days of the week, in connection with work and business, you will have to travel and migrate to far-flung areas. During this, some will be troubled in court cases.

Capricorn

Ganesha says this week, the stars will be helpful in developing harmony among the relatives. In such a situation, there will be an auspicious and positive atmosphere in the family. If you are engaged in raising work and business somewhere. So there will be chances of desired progress. However, according to the movement of the stars, you should avoid such steps which will give tension in the relationship. However, due to some diseases and pain in your health, you will remain troubled. So keep up the smartness. In the middle part of this week, there will be a period of great success in the areas of re-study and teaching. There can be moments of love for each other in love relationships. From the middle of this week, there will be a wide variety of progress in achieving financial goals. So don’t weaken your understanding. So it will be good. By the way, due to the opening of files in any court case, you will be worried. Therefore, do not hesitate to continue the understanding.

Aquarius

Ganesha says this week, the stars will be increasing the brightness of the face. If there is disease and pain, you may be able to have it removed. This week there will be moments of love among the relatives. Due to this there will be moments of laughter and happiness among the brothers and sisters. So don’t weaken the level of understanding. It is very possible that the intention of finalizing the works of any religion and charity will be fruitful. On the other hand, in the middle of the week, you may have to do a long exercise to complete the work related to land and building. Some opponents may conspire to humiliate you by eating inside. But in the third and last part of the week, there will be sweetness in love relationships. So that he will be positive about you. Because the stars will continue to give better results than expected in the economic sectors. Overall, you will continue to get auspicious and positive results this week. But don’t weaken your understanding.

Pisces

Ganesha says this week, there will be opportunities to make work and business splendid and to remove the difficulties coming in the economic sectors. In such a situation, your confidence will increase in the areas of related work and business. But differences and deep tension can arise in some matters between the relatives. So don’t weaken your understanding. So it will be good. However, in terms of health, your day will be pleasant and wonderful. At the same time, there will be benefit of delicious dishes this week. But again in the middle of the week, the movement of stars will give opportunities to improve health. At the same time, there will be those who give the gift of prosperity to the family. So don’t weaken your understanding. So it will be good. In the last days of this week, there will be continuous progress in the areas related to building and motor vehicles. In such a situation, you will be successful continuously. However, there will be chances of some disturbance again between health and relatives.

Birthday Predictions  – 30th January to 5th February 2023 By Chirag Daruwalla 

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Birthday Predictions  – 30th January to 5th February 2023 By Chirag Daruwalla – Son of Astrologer Bejan Daruwalla

30th January

Ganesha says although you have many natural abilities to influence people and are generally positive, you may need to learn to curb your tendency to act irrationally and impatiently from time to time. Fresh graduates have promising employment prospects, and times are good for academics, scientists, writers, and athletes as well. Money is the sum of profit, but expenses can also increase in the long run.

31st January

Ganesha says people respect you for your honesty and determination in fulfilling your duties, but you need to curb your sometimes vindictive and jealous behavior. Money gains are guaranteed as long as you surround yourself with smart, talented people. Some may find new love through social events and fun. In later days, you may experience religious impulses which may lead you to seek spiritual blessings.

1st February

Ganesha says today you should be very careful, especially while managing money. May spiritual blessings give you mental peace and calm during this time. Can consider long-distance travel. A proper diet is important for people with chronic conditions. Sales and marketing positions are likely to be in high demand. Matrimonial matchmaking for people looking for a life partner. Although there can help from others and is generally a positive period, hasty or careless decisions can only cause harm.

2nd February

Ganesha says because the stars are in your favor today, you are likely to experience significant success and notoriety. Some of you may also get money from your ancestors. You will need to be diplomatic and delicate on the domestic front. Being stubborn can only make things worse. You will have no problem in reaching your goals and exceeding people’s expectations. Children can excel in both athletics and academics. It is not impossible that the away leave could happen later in the day.

3rd February

Ganesha says the key to your success today may be information. During this time you can feel successful and motivated and you can be benefited. Later in the day for some, spiritual growth. You will be in a good position to ask for favors, raise money and manage others. Money is the sum of profit, but do not spend extravagantly. Travel can be very exciting and enlightening.

4th February

Ganesha says you need to curb your temptation to behave rashly, extravagantly, and selfishly at times. Today you will experience an increase in self-confidence. You can participate in activities that improve your quality of life and secure your future. At the workplace, you will assume a leadership role, and a lot may rest on your shoulders. Making new contacts can open up great business and growth opportunities. Someone of the opposite sex who has strong feelings of love for you can add spice to your life.

5th February

Ganesha says today, where there can be economic benefits, it can be difficult to save due to an increase in expenses. Your professional advancement should be your full focus as it can give desired results faster. Business people can develop useful contacts. Children and spouses can be very demanding but supportive. Minor health issues like stiff neck, back pain, or other body aches can cause problems. You can be socially successful if you travel and participate in clubs and social activities.

The Seniors Kitchen: Mumbai Sandwiches – Part 1

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Simple Cucumber Cheese Sandwich

Ingredients: Bread Slices, Butter, Cucumber, Green Chutney, Cheese slice , Chat masala

Evenly spread  Green Chutney on two bread slices

Apply Butter on 1 bread slice

Place Cucumber slices , Sprinkle Chat Masala

Place butter bread slice on top, add cheese slice.

Remove the sides if you wish

Bon Appetit!

 Aloo Sev Sandwich

Ingredients: Bread, Butter, Green Chutney, Boiled Potato, Sev, Coriander and Chat masala

Evenly spread Green Chutney on two bread slices

Apply Butter on 1 bread slice

Cut boiled potato in thin slices and place on the bread, Chat Masala

Place Bread with butter on the top, Sprinkle crispy sev, cover up with the chutney slice.

Remove the sides if you wish

Relish this street food in the comfort of your home!

Sweet and Savoury French Toast

Ingredients: Bread, Green Chutney, Eggs, Milk, Sugar, Vanilla Essence, Honey, Cinnamon powder

In Eggs, add Milk, Honey, Vanilla Essence, and some cinnamon powder.

Whisk well until frothy. Dip the bread slices in the mixture. Grease the pan with oil, and bread and let it cook till golden brown. Apply green chutney on 2 bread slices, keeping the toasted bread in the middle!

Remove the sides if you wish

Watch the videos  on The Seniors Kitchen:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XRdy-qPGnwA

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Solution Spot the Differences #62

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Differences are:
1. School bag missing
2 Footpath tiles missing
3 School logo
4 Spelling in reverse order
5 Driver uniform colour
6 Mirror is missing

Entertainment Review: The Elephant Whisperers

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The Elephant Whisperers

There are stories all around if one knows where to look; and those who find them are sometimes suitably rewarded. Like Kartiki Gonsalves, who won an Academy Award nomination for her short documentary, The Elephant Whisperers, and her achievement is getting the kind of attention documentary films do not usually get.

The film is set in the Mudumalai Forest in Tamil Nadu, where the Theppakadu Elephant Camp has been set up, one the oldest in the country. In this lush emerald green paradise with dream-like views wherever the eye turns, a tribal couple, Bomman and Belli care for an orphaned baby elephant Raghu, who was left in the forest in battered condition. As workers in the camp, it is their job to look after elephants but these two treat Raghu with the tender care a child deserves from parents.

Raghu is like a playful child, who demands to be fed, and spits out the food he does not like; he is bathed by the carers, who pamper and play with the frisky calf. Later another orphaned baby elephant Ammu is assigned to Bomman and Belli, and just like a human child, Raghu throws jealous tantrums, before he accepts Ammu as a playmate.

During the time it took to shoot the film, Bomman and Bellie get married; she has lost her first husband and daughter, and so gives all her devotion to the elephant babies.

Around them, the forest changes colours with the seasons; the sunrises and sunsets are magical; other animals and birds flit in and out of the gorgeous scenery. It must have been the cinematographers’ delight to shoot this film in such a beautiful and peaceful place. Elephant herds move around with their majestic, lumbering walk, looking for food and water; the ones that are unable to—like the orphaned calves—are cared for in the camp. It does, however, need the exceptional level of devotion that the couple give the animals for them to survive.

As Belli says, the baby elephants are like children, only they can’t speak the language. Raghu and Ammu have an endearing cute way of interacting with their human parents. The film took many years to make, and the editing of footage to make it a coherent story must have been tough too, still, it does not look like an overly structured or organised Nat Geo documentary. Its beauty lies in its simplicity, and capturing unscripted, wondrous moments.

Without hammering in the message, The Elephant Whisperers, makes its point about human-animal coexistence, and the many reasons why forests and wildlife habitats need to be protected. It also makes a case for a minimalistic lifestyle and awareness of the unmatched beauty of nature. Elsewhere in the country and the world, urbanisation, greed and climate change are slowly destroying forests. Films like this might just encourage forest and wildlife conservation,

The Elephant Whisperers

Directed by Kartiki Gonsalves

On Netflix

10 Bharat Bhushan gems

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When it comes to songs filmed on Bharat Bhushan, the 1952 movie Baiju Bawra immediately comes to mind. Though he had made his debut 11 years earlier, this film pushed him into the limelight, with ‘Man Tadapat’ played all over.

Bharat Bhushan later appeared in many popular songs. To mark his 21st death anniversary on January 27, we choose 10 such gems. Basant Bahar and Barsaat Ki Raat were also hugely popular soundtracks, besides Baiju Bawra. The list is chronological.

1 O Duniya Ke Rakhwale – Baiju Bawra (1952)

The film Baiju Bawra had so many great songs, and the first inclination was to choose the Malkauns composition ‘Man Tadapat’ for this list. However, the pathos-filled Mohammed Rafi song ‘O Duniya Ke Rakhwale’ in raag Darbari had many admirers too. It was a typical Naushad creation with Shakeel Badayuni writing, ‘O kismat phooti aas na tooti, paaon mein pad gaye chaale”. Bharat Bhushan’s expressions matched the words.

2 Aaye Na Baalam Waada Karke – Shabaab (1954)

The combination of Bharat Bhushan, Rafi, Naushad and Badayuni was in full form again. The words were “Aaye na baalam waada karke, thak gaye naina dheeraj dharke”. The verses had sad lines like, “Chhup gaya chanda, lut gayee jyoti, taare ban gaye jhoothe moti, pad gaye pheekay rang nazar ke”. The film also starred Nutan.

3 Dil-e-Nadaan Tujhe Hua Kya Hai – Mirza Ghalib (1954)

Bharat Bhushan played Mirza Ghalib and Suraiya was Chaudhvin, his courtesan lover. This melodious duet, sung by Talat Mahmood and Suraiya, was set to tune by Ghulam Mohammed. Ghalib’s lines were, “Dil-e-nadaan tujhe hua kya hai, aakhir is dard ki dava kya hai”. All the songs in the film used Ghalib’s poetry.

4 Sur Na Saje – Basant Bahar (1956)

The legendary Manna Dey sang two outstanding songs in Basant Bahar – ‘Bhaya Bhanjana’ and ‘Sur Na Saje’, both filmed on Bharat Bhushan. On the latter, Shailendra wrote, “Sur na saje, kya gaaoon mein, sur ke bina jeevan soona, sur na saje”. Shankar-Jaikishan composed it in raag Pilu.

5 Ek Pardesi Mera Dil Le Gaya – Phagun (1958)

Music director O.P. Nayyar used the snake-charmer’s tune in this catchy number sung by Rafi and Asha Bhosle. Qamar Jalalabadi wrote the words, “Ek pardesi mera dil le gaya, jaate jaate meetha meetha gham de gaya”. The gorgeous Madhubala was cast opposite Bharat Bhushan.

6 Aa Laut Ke Aaja Mere Meet – Rani Rupmati (1957)

Mukesh dazzled on this song filmed on Bharat Bhushan and Nirupa Roy. S.N. Tripathi composed the melancholic tune in raag Madhumad Sarang, with Bharat Vyas writing, “Aa laut ke aaja mere meet, tujhe mere geet bulaate hain: mera soona pada re sangeet, tujhe mere geet bulaate hain”. The female version was sung by Lata Mangeshkar.

 

7 Chaahe Paas Ho –  Samrat Chandragupt (1958)

This number was composed by Kalyanji Virji Shah before he officially teamed up with brother Anandji. Bharat Bhushan and Nirupa Roy were the lead pair again, with Rafi and Lata singing. Bharat Vyas began with the lines, “Chaahe paas ho, chaahe door ho, meri duniya ki tum tasveer ho”.

8 Bheega Bheega Pyaar Ka Sama – Sawan (1959)

Hansraj Behl composed this breezy song sung by Rafi and Shamshad Begum. Bharat Bhushan and Amita were shown in a tonga scene. Prem Dhawan penned the words beginning, “Bheega bheega pyaar ka samaa bataade tujhe jaana hai kahaan, baliye, bataade tujhe jaana hai kahaan”.

9 Zindagi Bhar Nahin Bhoolegi – Barsaat Ki Raat (1960)

This was a beautifully picturised love song with Bharat Bhushan recording it in one place and Madhubala listening to it on the radio. Rafi sang his Roshan classic composed in raag Yaman. Sahir Ludhianvi wrote, “Zindagi bhar nahin bhoolegi woh barsaat ki raat, ek anjaan hasina se mulaqat ki raat”.

10 Phir Wohi Shaam – Jahan Ara (1964)

Madan Mohan composed this beauty sung by Talat Mahmood and filmed on Bharat Bhushan and Mala Sinha. Rajendra Krishan’s lyrics were filled with pathos and loneliness, as he began, “Phir wohi shaam, wohi gham, wohi tanhai hai, dil ko samjhaane teri yaad chali aayee hai, phir wohi shaam”.

 

It is interesting to note that Bharat Bhushan has been represented in this list by four voices – Rafi, Talat Mahmood, Manna Dey and Mukesh. And though Rafi has the bulk with five songs, the other singers matched the actor’s personality well. 

 

Does walking every day aid weight loss?

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Walking — this simple movement that most people can do, does make magic happen. An exercise that doesn’t require much skill or special equipment, contributes to overall health, is a great form of physical activity that’s free, low risk and one of the easiest forms of exercise to incorporate into your day-to-day life. 

Time and again it is proven to be the most effective form of exercise for all age groups, and as we know exercising is a must to stay fit and healthy. 

 

Calories burned while walking —

Walking is the simplest form of exercise, which makes it appealing to many people, especially those looking to burn a few extra calories. The calories you burn depends on a lot of factors like your weight, the speed at which you walk, terrain, climate, your age and even sex. Your body needs energy in the form of calories for all the complex chemical reactions to take place which allow you to to move, breathe, think and function. People who are more physically active burn more calories than those who live a primarily sedentary lifestyle. Unfortunately, a sedentary lifestyle not only contributes to weight gain, but also increases your risk of developing health problems.

 

Walking can help you lose weight and keep the weight off —

Walking every day can help you burn calories and even lose weight. Just walking for one hour a day can help you meet your weight loss goals. 

Many people who lose weight end up piling it all back if it isn’t maintained. Regular exercise is  important to help you maintain your weight and burn the unwanted calories of the day. A regular exercise routine that includes walking will allow you to stay active in the long run. Many view walking as an ineffective weight loss system but walking for just one hour everyday can definitely help you shed those extra pounds. 

 

Walking also helps preserve lean muscle —

When people try to lose weight by entering a calorie deficit,but it is important to know that often you lose some muscle along with body fat. This can be counterproductive if too much muscle is lost because muscle is more metabolically active than fat. This means that having more muscle helps you burn more calories each day. Walking can help you preserve your muscle when you lose weight, reduce age-related muscle loss and help you retain your muscle strength. 

 

Walking reduces belly fat — 

Storing a lot of fat around your midsection can cause a lot of health issues. One of the most effective ways to reduce belly fat is to regularly walk. An aerobic exercise like walking is key to shedding fat around your midriff.  

 

Walking also improves your mood — 

Everyone knows that exercising is a sure shot way to uplift your spirits and boost your mood by making your brain more sensitive to the hormones serotonin and norepinephrine. These hormones make you feel happy, stimulate the release of endorphins and say bye bye to depression and anxiety. The elevated mood will automatically make walking an easy habit to incorporate in your life. 

 

Other health benefits of walking — 

Walking has many health benefits like decreased LDL (bad) cholesterol levels, increased HDL (good) cholesterol levels, an improved mood and stable blood pressure levels. These benefits in turn reduce the risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes and overall mortality. 

 To lose weight, you must consistently eat fewer calories each day to stay in a calorie deficit.  You can do this by increasing the calories you burn via exercise, decreasing the calories you consume, or both. Walking promotes weight loss, especially when combined with a low calorie diet.

 

How to start walking for exercise — 

If you want to incorporate walking into your daily routine, there are many ways. First off, start slowly, at a comfortable pace and then progressively increase your duration and frequency. 

Once you can walk as long and as frequently as you’d like, you can increase the intensity of your walk. 

If you’re just starting, immediately walking fast and for a long time can leave you fatigued, sore, and unmotivated. If you are typically an inactive person, consider stepping it up at a slower rate to reduce injury risk. 

 

There are different levels of walking — 

– Slow fat burn which focuses on longer duration and slower steps.

– Cardio walking is a brisk forty minute walk, almost like a jog, this races your heart rate and burns calories. 

– Uphill walking is good for your core muscles and reduces belly fat.

– Downhill walking is a strain on the knees but good for body balance, take small steps, almost like a shuffle, it pumps your energy levels and keeps your knees intact.

 

How to shake up your routine if it is getting monotonous — 

Just like any exercise regimen, shaking things up often, keepings things alive and fresh.  Here are a few tips to stay motivated and engaged —

    • Modify your route: Walk a different route or through a different neighbourhood. You could switch to walking on a treadmill or even taking your usual route in reverse.
    • Split up your walking time or change times: If your goal is to walk for an hour everyday, try splitting up into two 30 minute walks. If you regularly walk in the morning, try walking in the evenings, or vice versa. Just for a healthy dose of change. 
    • Walk with a partner: Sometimes walking with a partner can keep you motivated and who doesn’t love a good gossip session while walking. 
    • Listen to music, an audiobook or podcast: Keep yourself entertained and you won’t even notice the time fly by
  • Use a fitness tracker to log your steps and keep yourself motivated.
  • Join a walking group, company is always welcome. Time flies!

 

The bottom line —

Walking is a great form of exercise, and doing so for one hour each day may aid in weight loss and provide other health benefits. By the way, fat loss begins only after the first twenty minutes of your walk, so if one hour seems too much initially, begin with 30 minutes, then gradually increase for better results. Every little bit helps —

  • so start small and try to gradually increase the amount you walk daily. 
  • Try upping your pace or walking on an incline. 
  • Walking with hand or ankle weights can also boost the intensity of your walk. 
  • While it might seem insignificant, 50 calories burned a day adds up to the total. Take a look at your schedule and determine how you can begin to incorporate walking into your daily routine.

 Just like they say every drop counts- every step counts. 

Impressive health benefits of cabbage

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This flower-like vegetable is one of the most impressive among the bunch but is often neglected. Cabbage or lovingly called ‘Pattagobi’  is part of a very impressive vegetable family. His brothers and sisters are broccoli, radish, kale, bok choy and brussel sprouts. 

Cabbage comes in a variety of shapes, textures, sizes and colours. Some types of cabbage have a subtle, delicate flavour, while there are others which pack a peppery punch. The most common type of cabbage is green cabbage. But there are hundreds of other varieties in red, white and purple hues which are equally if not more beneficial and delicious. 

This article uncovers all the wonderful health benefits of cabbage — 

Cabbage is packed with nutrients especially vitamin C and vitamin K — 

Low in calories, with an impressive nutritional profile. What more could we want? Cabbage is rich in vitamin B6 and folate which are essential for many important processes in the body like metabolism and the normal functioning of the nervous system. Cabbage is also full of antioxidants, fibre and most importantly vitamin C and vitamin K. 

Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant that protects against heart disease, boosts collagen production, keeps the bones and muscles healthy, it helps your body absorb iron from plant-based foods and even shoos away certain cancers and vision loss. The high vitamin C content is responsible for most of the health benefits cabbage has to offer.  

Vitamin K is another nutrient that is key to optimum functioning. Its main responsibility is to ensure proper blood clotting, which it does fabulously. 

It’s loaded with antioxidants that help keep inflammation in check — 

Cabbage really shines when it comes to a plant chemical called phytonutrients, a cell-protecting force. This plant chemical along with the multitude of antioxidants protect the body and cells from inflammation and damage caused by free radicals. It’s important to make note that inflammation isn’t always a bad thing, acute inflammation is. Our body relies on its inflammatory response to protect itself from infection or speed up healing. Chronic inflammation over a long period of time is concerning and can cause heart disease, arthritis and other serious diseases. The antioxidants found in cabbage are famous for their anti-inflammatory effect and easing of swelling in your tissues. 

Eating cabbage helps detoxify your body —

Cabbage is a vitamin C and a sulphur-rich vegetable. These nutrients are known to flush out toxins from your body and detoxify the liver. 

 

Cabbage is great for your skin —

As I have harped on in the first half of this article, cabbage is full of vitamin C and K which as you might’ve guessed also help protect your skin. The sulphur in cabbage pulls in nutrition and removes waste from the skin cells. Cabbage contains a chest full of different antioxidants that can turn back time and de-age your skin.

 

Cabbage can do wonders for digestion —

If you want to improve your digestive health, look no further, fibre-rich cabbage is here. This crunchy vegetable is full of gut-friendly, insoluble fibre that helps keep the digestive system healthy by adding bulk to your stool and promoting regular bowel movements. The fibre in cabbage also increases the beneficial bacteria in your gut, produces essential nutrients and protects your immune system.  This is especially true when you eat fermented cabbage in the form of kimchi or sauerkraut. Cabbage also has nutrients that keep the lining of your stomach and intestines strong. 

Cabbage keeps your heart healthy —

Cabbage, especially red cabbage, raises the levels of heart-protecting antioxidants. It also helps lower oxidised LDL, which leads to hardening of the arteries. Since antioxidants ease inflammation, it helps prevent heart disease. Adding cabbage to your diet will positively affect your cardiovascular health.

Cabbage lowers blood pressure and cholesterol levels — 

High blood pressure is a gateway for more serious heart related issues like heart disease, heart attacks and strokes. Increasing your dietary potassium is important to lower your blood pressure. Eating more potassium-rich cabbage is an effective and delicious way to lower high blood pressure and stabilise it.  People with high cholesterol also have an increased risk of heart disease, especially when they have elevated levels of LDL (bad) cholesterol. Cabbage contains substances that decrease LDL levels and improve your health.

Cabbage helps keep cancer away — 

Research suggests that cabbage can help prevent certain types of cancer. They believe this stems from the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory qualities as well as sulphur substances which all turn into cancer fighters in the body. 

Hangover and headache cure — 

Cabbage has been used as a hangover cure, the high fibre content of cabbage helps absorb the alcohol in your system. The next time you wake up with a hangover, do as the Greeks do, boil some cabbage and drink the juice. Using cabbage leaves as a compress can help relieve a headache or migraine. 

To conclude — 

Cabbage is an exceptionally healthy food, with a phenomenal nutritional profile. It can be added to your diet as salad, a vegetable, a side dish, juice or even kimchi. Cabbage is tasty and inexpensive. It deserves to be spotlighted for its health benefits and added to your plate! 

Effective pain management

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On 21 Jan, 2023, Seniors Today hosted their weekly Health Live Webinar with Dr Hemant Mehta, a leading anesthetist and pain management specialist, who spoke on and answered questions about managing chronic pain

 

About Dr Hemant Mehta:

Dr Hemant Mehta is the Head of the Department of Anaesthesia and Pain Management at Sir H N Reliance Foundation Hospital and Research Centre. He specialises in the management of high risk patients and conducting painless deliveries. He is a specialist in all types of Regional Anaesthesia and Blocks. With experience of over three decades, Dr Mehta holds the world record for anesthetising a 300kg patient at Breach Candy Hospital – this patient was managed under Epidural Anaesthesia by joining two Operation tables. The patient had been declared unfit at Dubai, Bangkok and London. Dr Mehta has been a faculty member and speaker at many national and international conferences such as- a conference on ‘Endoscopy – Scope and future’ and for All India Conference on ‘Minimal Access Surgery – Status in India’ by Indian Association of Gastrointestinal Endo Surgeons (IAGES) in 2002, Regional Conference on Anaesthesiology, Critical Care And Pain Management, 2003, a symposium on pain management in 2004, faculty member and panel discussion member on Anesthetic Implications In Laparoscopic & Thoracoscopic Surgeries at B.Y.L. Nair Hospital, faculty member and speaker for symposium on ‘Diabetes and Pregnancy’ at Wadia Hospital, and at a symposium on ‘Anaesthesia for laparoscopy’ at KEM Hospital. His vast experience as a freelance anaesthesiologist includes:

  • Managing large numbers of coronary bypass and open heart surgeries
  • Large numbers of kidney transplant operations under epidural anaesthesia
  • More than 15000 cases of painless delivery
  • Many high risk cases and complex nerve blocks for management of chronic pain.

 

As high as 85% of the elderly population suffers from pain and out of which 66% is suffering from lower back pain.

 

The various factors that play a role in pain are:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Poor posture 
  • Vitamin D and calcium deficiencies 
  • Dietary factors 
  • Physical activity
  • Hydration
  • Spine care, back care and back strengthening 

 

Common causes for chronic pain are:

  • Kidney stones
  • Lifting heavy weights/ object in an incorrect manner
  • Sleeping incorrectly- such as individuals who tend to sleep on their back invariable tend to develop coccydynia- which is commonly called tailbone pain
  • Osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis
  • Other degenerative disorders- these are easily preventable, provided we take good care of ourselves 
  • Muscle spasms
  • Knee pain 

 

Simple things that you can include in your routine to avoid chronic pain:

  • Simple exercises to keep yourself moving and increasing your mobility, such as walking, yoga, stretching
  • Maintaining good posture- right from your younger days
  • Healthy diet- rich in various nutrients, regularly taking your multivitamin and calcium supplements
  • A minimum of 30 minutes of exposure to the sun light, to ensure your body gets its natural and rich source of vitamin D

 

People who are a higher risk of chronic pain are:

  • Older people
  • Women nearing/ in their menopausal period
  • Smokers, chronic alcoholics

Management of pain does not simply mean taking analgesics. Analgesics simply mask the pain while the damage continues. This is when Pain Physicians come into picture, to help you diagnose the cause of your pain, to educate you about the cause of your pain and to counsel you and the caregivers.

They counsel you about modifiable factors, lifestyle changes while also ensuring that you require as little assistance of analgesics to alleviate your pain and to develop your basic strength in a way that your pain subsides and your pain settles and you have a good, pain free life. 

Birthday Predictions – 23rd to 29th January 2023 By Chirag Daruwalla

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Birthday Predictions  – 23rd to 29th January 2023 By Chirag Daruwalla – Son of Astrologer Bejan Daruwalla

 23rd January

Ganesha says you are a direct person who does not worry about the consequences, but you need to check your tendency to act in a self-righteous, domineering, or arrogant manner at times. At this time your financial condition would have improved a lot. No matter how attractive new investment opportunities are, you should invest very carefully. If you do not pay attention to your expenses, then your budget can get a big blow.

24th January

Ganesha says although you are well-mannered and your parents are proud of your work, you still need to learn to control your tendency to appear cynical, sad, and useless at times. You can work independently today and this can go a long way in your career. Additionally, you may travel to distant places and make lasting connections. Your social life can be very vibrant and there are chances that a casual encounter could turn into something more. You have the most time with this person.

25th January 

Ganesha says you can put yourself in a better position financially and socially. Your income may increase, but you may also spend more on luxuries, which may make it very challenging for you to plan for savings. Your high expectations for your life partner can sometimes create problems. Your career can benefit from your high self-esteem and spirit. To maintain peace in the house, one should be aware of the needs of others. At the end of the day, property disputes or long-standing issues can be resolved amicably.

26th January

Ganesha says you are extremely enterprising and have a natural ability to charm others, but you need to control your tendency to be moody, reckless, and sometimes impatient. Businessmen can witness the implementation of their new endeavors and plans. Frequent trips throughout the year can be enjoyable and provide opportunities to make new, valuable contacts. When dealing with challenging issues, use tact and diplomacy and try to reach a compromise.

27th January

Ganesha says due to the investments made in the past, your financial condition can improve today. Health can be a concern, and preventive medicine should never be neglected. Starting a new business can be very profitable. With the improvement in the economic condition, your expenditure on amenities and other amenities may increase. Your understanding of love may change as you may become more private and keep many things to yourself. Your relationship may not have the same level of trust that it used to have earlier, which can sometimes lead to issues.

28th January

Ganesha says looking at career prospects, this can be a very beneficial time for you. The day can also prove to be very important for students who wish to pursue higher education abroad as they may be able to get admission to their preferred college or university despite stiff competition. An accomplished person can provide fresh suggestions and unwavering support for your endeavors. If you are ready to cut down on frivolous expenses, you can also increase your income and savings.

29th January

Ganesha says your fortune and prosperity are coming to you in abundance today. You may get new opportunities for growth if you attend lectures and seminars. However, speculation should be done with great caution as this appears to be a favorable time for new endeavors and alliances. You may get a lot of appreciation for your efforts and your original ideas may come to fruition. You may be more respected by colleagues because of your better skills and abilities.

Weekly Predictions – 23rd to 29th January 2023 By Chirag Daruwalla

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Weekly Predictions  – 23rd to 29th January 2023 By Chirag Daruwalla – Son of Astrologer Bejan Daruwalla

Aries

Ganesha says this week you will be able to understand very well that if you include yoga in your daily routine, then many of your health problems will go away. Because in terms of health, this week can give you many opportunities to introspect. Avoid investing your money in any type of society or any illegal investment, even if you see good profit from it. Because you may see your money safe in the beginning but later it can cause you a big loss. This week, a change of location of a member in the house is possible, or there is a possibility of moving away. from your present place of residence. Make plans to get away. This week you will be seen taking out some time from your busy life for your family, spending time with them, and discussing any decision related to the family. You can take responsibility for more than one task on yourself this week, which can increase your sense of work. This will not only increase your mental stress, but also you will feel unsuccessful in completing one of your tasks on time. The auspicious position of the planets is going to be very lucky for you this week. During this time you will not face any difficulty in understanding each and every topic properly.

Taurus

Ganesha says this week, apart from minor health problems, there will be little possibility of any major disease for the natives of this zodiac. However, in case of any seasonal illness, you are advised not to take medicines without the doctor’s advice, while not treating yourself at home. You will have to think twice before investing in all the schemes that come before you this week. Because it is possible that there is some secret conspiracy behind the opportunity coming from the front, due to which you will have to bear the brunt in the future. This week, due to the opening of an old secret in family life, you may have to face some problems. In such a situation, it would be better for you that instead of waiting for a secret to be revealed, you yourself need to accept your mistake while sharing it with others. This week, people doing any kind of partnership business will have to show tact while dealing with their partners. Otherwise, they can even cheat you in a big way. This week students will need to pay maximum attention to their company, as there is a possibility that your image may get tarnished in school or college due to your wrong association. With this, you can deprive yourself of getting the cooperation of your teachers.

Gemini

Ganesha says this week you need to work on such things, which will improve your health. Your expenses will increase this week, but you can try to control the expenses with the help of your family members or partner. For this, it would be better if you plan a proper budget together with them and only then make any expenditure. Remember that whatever money you are spending, it should be for the purchase of essential things only. There is every possibility of a positive change in the health of the father this week. With this, you will be seen discussing many domestic issues while spending time with them. This will not only help you in improving your relationship with your father but your father will also be able to cooperate with you. Self-employed businessmen of this amount can get more success this week. This can give them due respect in society as well as in the family and this can help them to mold themselves for better performance. Students of your zodiac may not have to work hard this week to get good marks in the field of education. That is, even after working less hard during this period, you can be successful in getting better marks than normal.

Cancer

Ganesha says this week your mental troubles can end your physical happiness. Whose negative impact can distract you from your goals, and can affect the field of work. This week, any of your equipment or electronic items or any kind of gadget is likely to get damaged. On which you may have to spend your extra money apart from financial planning. This week instability will be seen in your nature. In such a situation, you will need to control your nature and improve it. Especially before speaking anything in front of your spouse or lover, you have to choose your words carefully. Otherwise, its negative consequences can affect the peace of the house. The position of maximum planets in your zodiac sign suggests that some of you are likely to relocate or change jobs during this period as per your wish. However, for this, you have to improve relations with your superiors from the beginning. Along with this, the influence of many auspicious planets on you will also work to give you good results. So students who are dreaming of going abroad for education will get admission to their favorite school and college from this auspicious sight of planets.

Leo

Ganesha says you can understand very well this week that if you include yoga in your daily routine, then many of your health problems will go away. The beginning of this week may be good for you financially, but at the end of the week, your money may be spent due for some reason. You will be troubled by this. In such a situation, spend your money according to the right strategy from beginning to end. Because during this time you will be seen practicing yoga with him taking full care of his health. Along with this, you will also get the cooperation of brothers and sisters from time to time. For the people of your zodiac, this week is likely to prove to be very good in terms of business. Because at this time the stars are completely in your favor. With this, you will get full support of luck in your field of work and career. This may turn them against you and instigate the teachers against you. In such a situation, understanding their every conspiracy, there will be a need to improve your behavior towards everyone, otherwise, you can tarnish your image in front of others.

Virgo

Ganesha says you can make exercise or yoga a part of your life this week. Because at this time the favorable movement of many planets and nakshatra will encourage you to pay special attention to your health. This week you will have to walk very carefully in the field of economic side. Because there is a possibility that you will gain money from some old investment, but you may have to lose a lot of your money by meeting the unnecessary demands of others even without wanting to. After which you will also have to face problems in the future. So don’t say no to others. At this time you need to learn the most. Family members can have special importance in your life this week. Due to this, you can be seen taking advice from them in many important decisions of their life. Also, some of you can also shop for jewelry or household items. During this time you will be able to get rid of any of your disorders, due to which you will be seen working harder than before to achieve your goals in your workplace.

Libra

Ganesha says your horoscope is indicating that your avoiding more fatty food and your balanced routine will have a positive effect on your health this week and this will also reduce your obesity. This week someone in front can show you the benefits of a new agreement with a new plan. In such a situation, avoid taking any decision in haste, because you will not get the expected benefits from it. This week the children of the house will make you feel proud of your achievements. This can make you look somewhat emotional. In such a situation, instead of hiding your feelings, try to express them in front of the members and do not stop yourself from praising the children. Businessmen should avoid sharing anything related to their business with everyone this week. Students who were thinking of going abroad for studies will have to be patient this week and continue their hard work. Because there is a possibility that only by doing this you will be able to achieve success at the end of the week.

Scorpio

Ganesha says you will feel a headache and you will unnecessarily be seen getting angry on the children of the house. In such a situation, bring positivity in your nature, otherwise your relationship with children may get spoiled. This week you will most likely need to think about saving money with your family members and close ones from the very beginning, otherwise by the end of the week you may face many problems due to financial constraints. If you live away from home, then whenever you feel lonely this week, your family will make you feel in some form or the other that they are with you emotionally every moment even after being away. This will save you from depression. Along with this, it will also help you a lot in taking a wise decision. This week it is possible that you may face difficulties in completing any work in the field, but behaving like your senior angels, they can get you out of every trouble. For this, you have to take their cooperation by making them aware of all your problems in the beginning itself. On the basis of this, you will be able to perform well in your studies to a great extent and will be successful in the coming times. For this, you will need to bring a good change in your behavior towards your teachers from the very beginning and improve your association.

Sagittarius

Ganesha says due to ill health this week, you may feel a lack of confidence in yourself. But as soon as you start trying to take control of the situation, all your nervousness will disappear and you will soon find that what you thought was a problem was actually a trick of your mind. That’s why believe in yourself and walk continuously by making yourself aware of your health. Money will be most needed this week, but they will not have enough money due to the extravagance done you in the past. Due to this, you may have to face two-four from adverse situations. The ups and downs going on in different areas of your life this week will bring some irritability in your nature. And this obstinate attitude of yours can become a cause of dispute with the people of the house, which can hurt their hearts even if they do not want to. There are chances that you may also have a dispute with some of your close friends, due to which they may get hurt. This week, there will be harshness in your speech, due to which you will be seen arguing or quarreling with others on useless or trivial matters at the workplace. Its negative impact will not only harm your image but will also make it difficult for you to get proper support from your colleagues to move ahead in your career. Because of this, they will not be able to get proper time for their studies. In such a situation, avoid unnecessary travel this week as much as possible, otherwise, there may be trouble.

Capricorn

Ganesha says you may not have to work hard to keep yourself fit this week. Because luck will be with you during this time. With this, you will make less effort to keep your health better and still you will be able to keep yourself healthy. This week there is a possibility of theft of your movable or immovable property or someone may break your trust and grab it, so be careful from the beginning as much as possible and avoid blindly trusting anyone. Your energetic, lively and warm demeanor will please people around you, especially your family members. This will also give you the love and affection of your parents. If you were thinking of starting your stalled tasks, then this week is going to be a bit unfavorable for that too. Because even this week you may face difficulties in resuming the unfinished tasks of the previous days. This will affect your morale as well as there can be a possibility of a decline in your career. This week all the students are strictly instructed to give up laziness. Because during this time your lazy attitude will distance you from many people. Due to this, you may have to face two to four problems in the coming time. So discard laziness and try to learn something new.

Aquarius

Ganesha says this week you will feel that the real root of your unhappiness may be a physical or mental illness that was troubling you for a long time. In such a situation, try to keep yourself happy to avoid them. You know very well what people want from you. But despite this, you spend unnecessarily on all, you have to avoid increasing your expenses, and improve your habit from this week itself. This week you will feel that the family members are not very happy with you, no matter what you do for them. Therefore, it would be better for you to wait for the conditions to improve by giving some time to the family members instead of cursing yourself for this. This week you will find that another colleague is all praise for your achievements. So don’t let anyone else take credit for the work you have done. Otherwise, you may have to bear its loss negatively in your career. The hard work of the people who are dreaming of getting admission to a highly recognized institute for higher education can pay off this week. Because there is a possibility that you will get some good news.

Pisces

Ganesha says take special care of your spouse’s health this week, take care of them. Because it is possible that his sudden illness may affect family peace and deprive you of good food and drink. Never give your money to anyone without thinking. Otherwise, you may have to face a lot of trouble in the coming times. Therefore, to make good use of your money, you can take the advice of the elders of the house. If any old case was going on in the court, then this week you will get the proper results of your hard work, and the decision of that case is more likely to come in your favor. So keep trying without stopping and wait for the right time. But you will also need to understand that taking any hasty decision under the sway of emotions is not a wise act, but a foolish act. This week, any doubt in the minds of the students regarding education or any subject will be completely removed. Especially the natives of this zodiac who are studying hardware and electronics, company secretary, law, and social service sector can get immense success according to their hard work at this time. So, don’t waste time thinking about other things or domestic issues, and focus all your attention on your studies only.

 

How to live alone and embrace it

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How to Live Alone and Embrace It

Man was not meant to be an island. It is an integral part of our being to be social and coexist with other people, writes Vinita Alvares Fernandes

Man was not meant to be an island. It is an integral part of our being to be social and coexist with other people. 

There are several reasons why older adults over 60 tend to find themselves living alone. By choice, death of a spouse, no children, no family nearby or no family at all, divorce or just being a recluse. For many seniors, living alone is ideal. While many enjoy living alone and like the independence that comes with it, living alone does come with a few age related downsides.

You can be alone without being lonely

Being alone isn’t necessarily the same as being lonely. Being alone just means that you are physically alone. There is no one in your space. Being lonely on the other hand is a different ball game. It’s being emotionally alone. You crave human company but you feel isolated. You long for companionship. If you are living alone and experiencing feelings of loneliness, there are ways to address it and change it. 

For seniors who want to continue living alone or are new to living alone here are a few tips to embrace this time with yourself, with being independent and safe — 

Stay in good health —

One of the biggest risks for single household seniors is their health. Falling and injuring yourself rates the highest of all risks as very often you cannot get up to reach or ask for help. It’s essential for seniors who live alone to stay as healthy as possible by staying physically active, eating healthy foods, taking your medication on time, getting plenty of sleep, drinking enough water and most importantly, keeping your mind alert and active. 

Get to know yourself better —

Living alone can help you work on the most important relationship; the one you have with yourself. Living alone is like a self-discovery journey. You can do what you like, eat the food you like, decorate your house according to your taste and delve deep into your core to know your true self. A well-developed sense of self can make it easier to live alone. Try journaling to sort through your thoughts or doing some breathing exercises and meditation in your spare time. Take advantage of nobody being around to interrupt you while you sit back, read your favourite book and have a quiet cup of tea.

Strengthen your relationships —

Apart from strengthening the relationship you have with yourself, living alone gives you a chance to examine the other relationships in your life, the ones tht lift you higher, ones you need to work on, and ones that aren’t helping you. You can prioritise important connections in your life and remember to spend the most time with people who make you happy. 

Keep plenty of medication on hand —

If you are a senior who is living alone, please keep important and basic medication on hand. Running out of medication, especially during an emergency is a totally avoidable situation. 

Identify when you feel most lonely —

No matter how much you enjoy living alone, you are bound to feel lonely from time to time. These occasional feelings are normal and it’s important to direct them towards a positive outcome. Knowing where the loneliness feelings are stemming from can help you manage it. If you’re a morning person try meeting your friends for a morning walk or go to a restaurant for brunch. If your evenings feel quiet, listen to some music and sip a glass of wine or call a friend or relative for some light conversation. Going to the theatre or cinema does not always require company and is an instant pick-me-up. 

P.S. If your loneliness is more physical in nature, don’t overlook the value of hugging yourself.

Consider a house alert system —

The markets are flourishing with new and improved senior friendly home alert systems. Having an alarm system and emergency alert system to notify your next of kin in case of an emergency is an excellent idea for any senior who lives alone. This is one of the most important tips I would share with anyone staying alone, the only way to get timely help in case of a medical situation. Dont waste time setting yourself up. It does save lives!

Connect with your community —

Loneliness doesn’t always strike when you think it will. It can creep up on you. The key to avoid feeling lonely is to explore new ways to connect with your community and the people around you. Get to know your neighbours, join a laughter club or kitty party or even walks in your neighbourhood can help you meet new people and make new friends.

Have a list of emergency contacts —

Emergency contacts are crucial for any senior who lives alone. The list should include medical professionals, caretakers, family members, neighbours and friends.

Add some structure to your life —

Following a regular schedule can boost your sense of purpose and motivation. A routine often relieves stress and loneliness because you know what you need to do next. Making regular plans with friends and family is another great way to keep loneliness at bay. While a routine can do you a lot of good, there’s no need to plan out every minute of every day, leave room for spontaneity!

Try new things —

Exploring new interests is an important part of self-discovery. Be brave and try new pursuits.

Create your ideal space and adapt your home to make it age friendly —

While interior design isn’t the solution to loneliness, livening up your surroundings and living in a house that feels like a home that reflects your tastes and interests can make you feel better. Creating a space that is wholly your own can go a long way in helping you feel more comfortable and at peace. 

Learn technology —

Learning technology might be very intimidating especially when half your life is over. But technology can be a wonderful thing, especially when you are living alone. You can stay in touch with your loved ones through video calls and texts, correspond with your doctors and medical professionals from the comfort of your own home. Staying technologically connected in this day and age is a a ticket to connectivity, get on the bandwagon quick. 

Find the positives —

Living alone can be super liberating. You can wear what you want, do what you want, eat what you want and live life according to your rules and at your desired pace. The benefits of solo living extend well beyond these immediate pluses. It leads to a better imagination, more creativity, keeps your mind alert allows you to have down time and recharge and most importantly gives you a safe space to grow and discover new things about yourself. 

To conclude…

Check-in often and reach out for support, seniors who live alone should check in often with friends and family members. Having a strong support system makes life a little easier and a lot less scary. Acknowledging your needs will help you take the necessary steps toward finding a living situation that supports your well-being. If you are having a hard time living alone, reach out to the people in your life. Everyone will be more than willing to help you as it’s not always easy living alone. So embrace the time and space you have with yourself but don’t forget that man isn’t an island and people need people.