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Move and Sleep To Reduce Your Risk of Cancer

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According to some of the latest research it’s easy to avoid cancer, ust get enough sleep and enough exercise.

Exercise is good for more than just your waistline. A recent study presented at the American Association for Cancer Research’s Seventh Annual International Conference on Frontiers in Cancer Prevention Research suggests that regular physical activity can lower a woman’s overall risk of cancer but only if she gets a good night’s sleep. Otherwise, lack of sleep can undermine exercise’s cancer prevention benefits.”

“A new US study of nearly 6,000 women found that while regular exercise appeared to reduced their risk of cancer, this benefit was likely to be lost if they did not get enough sleep.

“Greater participation in physical activity has consistently been associated with reduced risk of cancer incidence at several sites, including breast and colon cancers.”

“Short duration sleep appears to have opposing effects of physical activity on several key hormonal and metabolic parameters, which is why we looked at how it affected the exercise/cancer risk relationship,” he added.

Scientists don’t know exactly how exercise reduces cancer risk, but they suspect it is something to do with hormone levels and the immune system, and also because it affects body weight. In this study McClain and colleagues looked at the link between exercise and cancer, with particular attention to how not getting enough sleep might affect it.”

Come on ladies get out and exercise, do it in the outdoors – go for a walk, walk the dog, play with the kids and then go home and get your nanna nap 🙂

live a balanced life…

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November 21, 2008 Posted by | Health, Wellness | , , , , | Leave a comment

Antioxidants: We Know We Need Them; How Do They Work?

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“Blueberries, pomegranates, green tea and dark chocolate — these are just some of the antioxidant-rich “superfoods” found in almost any supermarket today. As well as improving our general health, there is growing evidence that diets high in antioxidants may confer some protection against a long list of chronic diseases, including Alzheimer’s disease, cancer and even HIV. Given their increasing popularity, the fundamental question bears asking: What exactly are antioxidants, and how do they work in our bodies?

Antioxidants come in several forms, including the vitamins A, C and E; plant-derived polyphenols, found in colorful fruits and vegetables; and also the element selenium, found in nuts and broccoli. “What these compounds share,” explained K. Sandeep Prabhu, Penn State assistant professor of immunology and molecular toxicology, “is the ability to neutralize harmful molecules in our cells.”

These harmful molecules, known as free radicals, contain unpaired electrons — which is unusual because electrons typically come in pairs. “The unpaired electrons make free radicals highly reactive, and in this state, they can cause damage by attacking the components of our cells, and can even cause cancer,” Prabhu said.

So where do free radicals come from? Some are created as a natural by-product of reactions in our cells, said Prabhu. Other sources of free radicals include cigarette smoke, air pollution and exposure to UV light or radiation. Once free radicals are formed, they can make more free radicals by scavenging electrons from other molecules, “creating a domino effect,” he added.

Antioxidants neutralize free radicals either by providing the extra electron needed to make the pair, or by breaking down the free radical molecule to render it harmless. “Antioxidants stop the chain reaction of free radical formation and benefit our health by boosting our immune system,” explained Prabhu. Because antioxidants are used up in the process of free radical neutralization, a diet rich in antioxidants is essential to ensure a constant supply.

Research has shown that antioxidants can have an important impact on serious diseases. In one recent study, the addition of a polyphenol-rich blueberry gel to the diet of oral cancer patients prevented recurrence of the cancer. Another experiment demonstrated that increased levels of selenium in the diets of a group of HIV-positive patients significantly delayed progression of the disease.

A diet containing a balance of the various forms of antioxidants will maintain overall good health, and could even impact serious diseases. For instance, the American Cancer Society encourages people to eat five servings of fruits and vegetables per day, and emphasizes the benefits of getting antioxidants through foods rather than supplements. Prabhu himself makes sure he gets the recommended daily allowance of selenium by eating a few brazil nuts everyday. “The key,” said Prabhu, “is to eat a variety of fruits, vegetables, and nuts to ensure that we are taking advantage of all the health benefits that antioxidants can provide.”

Penn State Uni -Courtesy of PhysOrg

Is your family getting all the antioxidants they need to stay healthy and live long? Fresh food is one of the most important necessities of life, many of us all around the world now rely on fast food, canned food, frozen food etc.. in our busy lives, but you need to ask yourselves:

Is this a fair trade? Time now for time taken from yours and your families life span?

live a balanced life…  

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August 5, 2008 Posted by | Health, Nutrition, Wellness | , , , | Leave a comment

Smokers Lose 5 Years Off Lifespan

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I don’t like smoking, ask any of my friends and they will tell you it is true. I hate to breathe in the smoke and I don’t like the smell of it on your breath or your clothes when I give you a kiss or a hug. That being said, I still love my friends and family who do, it is the smoking that worries me not the person. I worry about their health and what smoking might be doing to them and this research article just in, doesn’t help at all…

“The effect of smoking on the chance of dying is similar to the effect of adding five to 10 years of age,” the study said.

“For both men and women, smoking increases the risk of death by nearly the same magnitude as adding five years to a person’s age.”

The figures were derived by compiling death and health risk statistics from various agencies such as the American Cancer Society and National Center for Health Statistics, and were arranged into 10-year risk charts.

“For example, a 55-year-old man who smokes has about the same 10-year risk of death from all causes as a 65-year-old man who never smoked,” it said.

Among women who never smoked, the 10-year risk rates of dying from breast cancer and heart disease were similar until age 60, after which heart disease was the biggest killer.

“For women who currently smoke, the chance of dying from heart disease or lung cancer exceeds the chance of dying from breast cancer from age 40 on.”

The study, which aimed to help doctors convey the risks of smoking, was led by Lisa Schwartz of the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Vermont.” (Physorg.com)

Now I know that smokers hate being told not to smoke, but I am going to do it anyway. Have you ever thought about how your friends and relatives feel about it, how they might worry themselves sick about you? My gorgeous daughter smoked for 10 years and last year she had her cervix removed, because of cancer. It went from just a warning (during a time when she was ‘quitting’- it did not progress at all) to urgently needing an operation (as soon as she started smoking again) that has got to tell you something. We love you so please stop.

live a balanced life…

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June 13, 2008 Posted by | 1 | , , , | Leave a comment