a discussion on health

Health is defined as state of fitness of human mind & body without ailments.
The World Health Organization (WHO) established in 1948, is a specialized agency of the United Nations Organization. 
Member countries of the UNO focused on the need for creating an international body to look after the health problems of people of the world. The combined efforts in this direction were to give better and faster results. The poor and developing countries were to benefit quickly.
According to World Health Organization " A state of complete physical, mental & social well being & not merely an absence of disease or infirmity."
Good health starts with making good food choices

Frequently Asked Questions

Q.What are the chief sources of protein?

A. Protein can be consumed from either plant or animal sources. Animal source includes meat, beef, pork, lamb, poultry, chicken, duck, turkey, fish and sea food and also eggs and dairy products.
Plant sources include nuts and legumes (best sources of protein). Soy protein contains the greatest amount of protein (it contains all the amino acids in the right proportions).
Q.What is the right quantity of protein required by our body?
A. Generally it is suggested that adults consume at least 50 grams of protein per day. Expecting and lactating mothers and children require about one and half times the amount of protein than adults on a body weight basis (1.75 grams/kg body wt/day).
The chart below provides the proper information:-  
Q.What is the function of kidney in our body?
A. Kidney performs four functions:
  • Ejection of waste material containing nitrogen from the body
  • Keep balance of acid-base
  • Regulate the volume of circulating blood
  • Regulate pressure relationships between the blood and the tissues.
Q.What foods help to prevent cancer?
A. Although research studies are inconclusive at this time, preliminary evidence suggests that some components of food may play a role in decreasing the risk of developing cancer, including phytochemicals, antioxidants, and omega-3 fatty acids.
Q.What are phytochemicals (or phytonutrients)?
A.Phytochemicals are chemicals found in plants that protect plants against bacteria, viruses, and fungi. Eating large amounts of brightly colored fruits and vegetables (yellow, orange, red, green, white, blue, purple), whole grains/cereals, and beans containing phytochemicals may decrease the risk of developing certain cancers as well as diabetes, hypertension, and heart disease. The action of phytochemicals varies by color and type of the food. They may act as antioxidants or nutrient protectors, or prevent carcinogens (cancer causing agents) from forming.
Q. What are antioxidants?
A. Antioxidants are substances that may protect cells from the damage caused by unstable molecules known as free radicals. Free radical damage may lead to cancer. Antioxidants interact with and stabilize free radicals and may prevent some of the damage free radicals might otherwise cause. Examples of antioxidants include beta-carotenelycopenevitamins C, E, and A, and other substances.
Q.How might antioxidants prevent cancer?
A. Antioxidants neutralize free radicals as the natural by-product of normal cell processes. Free radicals are molecules with incomplete electron shells which make them more chemically reactive than those with complete electron shells. Exposure to various environmental factors, including tobacco smoke and radiation, can also lead to free radical formation. In humans, the most common form of free radicals is oxygen. When an oxygen molecule (O2) becomes electrically charged or “radicalized” it tries to steal electrons from other molecules, causing damage to the DNA and other molecules. Over time, such damage may become irreversible and lead to disease including cancer. Antioxidants are often described as “mopping up” free radicals, meaning they neutralize the electrical charge and prevent the free radical from taking electrons from other molecules.
Q.Which foods are rich in antioxidants?
A. Antioxidants are abundant in fruits and vegetables, as well as in other foods including nuts, grains, and some meats, poultry, and fish. The list below describes food sources of common antioxidants.
  • Beta-carotene is found in many foods that are orange in color, including sweet potatoes, carrots, cantaloupe, squash, apricots, pumpkin, and mangos. Some green, leafy vegetables, including collard greens, spinach, and kale, are also rich in beta-carotene.
  • Lutein, best known for its association with healthy eyes, is abundant in green, leafy vegetables such as collard greens, spinach, and kale.
  • Lycopene is a potent antioxidant found in tomatoes, watermelon, guava, papaya, apricots, pink grapefruit, blood oranges, and other foods. Estimates suggest 85 percent of American dietary intake of lycopene comes from tomatoes and tomato products.
  • Selenium is a mineral, not an antioxidant nutrient. However, it is a component of antioxidant enzymes. Plant foods like rice and wheat are the major dietary sources of selenium in most countries. The amount of selenium in soil, which varies by region, determines the amount of selenium in the foods grown in that soil. Animals that eat grains or plants grown in selenium-rich soil have higher levels of selenium in their muscle. In the United States, meats and bread are common sources of dietary selenium. Brazil nuts also contain large quantities of selenium.
  • Vitamin A is found in three main forms: retinol (Vitamin A1), 3,4-didehydroretinol (Vitamin A2), and 3-hydroxy-retinol (Vitamin A3). Foods rich in vitamin A include liver, sweet potatoes, carrots, milk, egg yolks, and mozzarella cheese.
  • Vitamin C is also called ascorbic acid, and can be found in high abundance in many fruits and vegetables and is also found in cereals, beef, poultry, and fish.
  • Vitamin E, also known as alpha-tocopherol, is found in almonds, in many oils including wheat germ, safflower, corn, and soybean oils, and is also found in mangos, nuts, broccoli, and other foods.
Q. Is it true that children are now suffering more bone problems?
A. Bone fractures in children are tripling. There’s a vulnerable period at the start of your adolescent growth when you spurt up before your bones can fill in. Fractures are rising during this lag time when kids have relatively low bone density. Years ago it was more common to have milk with every meal: there wasn’t such a plethora of soda and other calcium-absent drink choices.
Bone strength is also improved with weight-bearing exercise like walking, aerobics, and basketball. But today people are much more sedentary, addicted to television and computer games.
There’s one more factor: with the increase in childhood obesity, children are falling with greater force because of their weight, so the impact is higher.
 Q: Why does calcium needs change as we age? In my sixties will I need more calcium for those nerve actions?
A. It’s not that the need for the biological activity of calcium changes, but the ability to utilize calcium for those activities changes. During adolescence, you absorb the most calcium and you excrete the least. About age 40, your efficiency starts declining so your calcium requirements go up to offset that deficiency.
Q: Why does menopause make a difference?
A.Estrogen suppresses calcium coming out of the bone, or bone resorption, so during menopause, all of a sudden you have an estrogen deficiency and resorption really escalates. You’re in this really rapid bone-loss period for the first few years after menopause, until your body readjusts, and then it sort of levels off on average to probably about 0.7 to 1 percent bone loss per year.
Q: So someone age 55 is probably losing more than someone 65.
A.Right, but then you go into another vulnerable period above age 80, when calcium efficiency declines again.
Q: Do salty meals block calcium absorption?
A. Every ion of sodium that a Caucasian excretes pulls out an ion of calcium with it. That can cause problems for bones. African Americans, on the other hand, retain a lot of sodium, which in adults can lead to high blood pressure. It does protect their bones, though, because they retain more calcium.
Q.What do you think am I fit because I play squash twice a week ?
A. Wrong. Don't mind but go out and run or cycle and try to sustain a rhythmic aerobic exercise over a given period of, say 30 minutes. You will realize how unfit you really are. Exercise or games which require only short bursts of energy may be dangerous rather than beneficial to health. The only safe and effective way to get really fit is by regular aerobic exercise.
Q.Is it right to say that 'Training hard' or 'No pain, no gain' is the only way to keep fit ?
A.This is not true. Never exercise so hard that you are gasping for air.Training intensively above the safe heart range may even be dangerous and fatal to many susceptible and unfit people. Pain is not necessary to keep fit.
Q. Is it true to say that it is the fat in the body which melts when you sweat and exercise in hot weather ?
A. Misguidance. Fat melts at 600 degree ! It is the water you are loosing from the body and not fat and this may easily cause dehydration and in extremes put serious stress on your body and strain your heart.
Q.Can I exercise when I have periods ?
A. Why not. most women can exercise and they find that it often relieves the cramps, tension, irritability, headaches, backaches, etc.
Q.Should I consume water when I exercise ? However, it is supposed that it may cause cramps and slow you down.
A. Of course. On the contrary, you should drink as much as your body can absorb (i.e. 200 to 400 ml plain water every 15 to 20 minutes and you should consume the same amount). In fact, serious dehydration, heat stroke, organ damage and even death could result if water is withheld .