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Dr K K Aggarwal

Role of folate or folic acid in cancer prevention

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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The role of folic acid in cancer prevention is uncertain. Large observational studies have suggested a decrease in risk of colorectal and other cancers with dietary folate but others randomized trials have raised the possibility of harm.

In the largest meta–analysis of individual patient data from randomized trials of folic acid for the prevention of cardiovascular disease and colorectal adenoma during an average of 5.2 years of treatment, there was no significant difference in overall cancer incidence for patients assigned to folic acid or placebo.

Vollset SE, Clarke R, Lewington S, et al. Effects of folic acid supplementation on overall and site–specific cancer incidence during the randomised trials: meta–analyses of data on 50?000 individuals. Lancet 2013.

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The Infinite Powers of the Spirit

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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Om Poornamadah
“Om Poornamadah Poornamidam
Poornaat Poornamudachyate
Poornasya Poornamaadaaya
Poornameva Avasihyate”

‘The whole is whole; if you take away the whole away from the whole the whole will still remain.’ (That is infinite, this is infinite, from the infinite, the infinite has come out. Having taken the infinite out of the infinite, the infinite alone remains). (In Vedanta, “That” represents superconsciousness, God or the Brahman and “This” the visible universe)

Atman, which makes up our body, is 99.99 per cent space or void and if we look at the rest, it is also nothing but space or void. This void or ‘akasha’ is what is called Brahman, God or consciousness and is a web of energized information.

This web of information of inner space called inner consciousness is the Atman or the Soul. This is connected with the outer space in the universe having a similar web of energized information called the Spirit or Brahmand.

The Spirit has been given many names by different religions: Allah, Buddha, Brahman, Christ or Wahe Guru. They all signify the same. This spirit, the energized field of information, is a powerful expression of live energy which can move faster than the speed of light. Soul is nothing but an individualized expression of the spirit.

This energy containing information in the spirit cannot be seen, felt, touched, tasted or smelt. It is beyond the perception of the five senses. One cannot destroy it with a weapon, fire, water or air. This consciousness is embedded in the space of each and every cell of the body. It is like sugar added to the milk. Once added, you cannot find it as it gets embedded with each and every drop of the milk.

Soul originates from the spirit. Each soul differs from the other by way of the subtle layer of consciousness called the ‘Sukshma Sharir’, which is controlled by the triad of actions, memories and desires.

Spirit is like the light, which is always positive and removes darkness. The basic nature of consciousness is “truth and bliss”. The soul and the spirit are devoid of hatred, anger or jealousy and are full of unconditional love. They are nothing but a treasury of information about everything. This infinite information is capable of doing anything, including miracles.

It is like the flame of a candle, which can light an infinite number of candles, while still retaining its illumination to the same degree.

Deepak Chopra once said that the soul is like the voice of Lata Mangeshkar coming through a radio, and if you break the radio, you will not find Lata Mangeshkar in it. Similarly, if you cut the body into pieces, you cannot find the physical presence of the spirit. Spirit is omnipresent and any amount of Spirit taken out from it will not make any difference to it.

In religious terms, the infinite or the vastness is equated and described by the blue color, and that is one reason why most gods are represented in blue color, or are shown in the background of blue sky. This only represents the vastness and infinite character of the consciousness.

A guru explained the Spirit to his disciples by the following equation: 1 × 1 = 1, 1/1=1 or, in other words everything is One. One can also explain it by the equation that infinity when added, subtracted, multiplied or divided by infinity will result only in infinity.

This infinite potential in our minds is present in between the thoughts and can be experienced by enabling oneself to go in between the thoughts by a process called meditation. One can experience the silent gap between the thoughts either with the use of primordial sound mantra as a vehicle or by way of yoga. People who have learnt meditation and have achieved the ability to go into the silent gaps can accomplish everything in their life using the principles of intention and attention. After any intention is introduced in the silent gap, a new reality can be created.

That which is born of the flash is a flash; that which is born of the spirit is spirit” (John)

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Treatment of Summer Diarrhea

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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Most summer diarrhea is watery, effortless and painless diarrhea with no mucous or blood. They need no antibiotics. The only treatment is oral rehydration solution.

One loose motion is equivalent to loss of one glass of fluid. Explaining this, Dr. Aggarwal said that if a patient has passed 10 loose motions, he needs 12 glasses of ORS apart from normal requirement of fluids and one glass for every loose motion passed again.

For up to 12 loose motions, a patient can be managed as an outpatient but if the loose motions are more than 12, he needs observation and if the numbers of loose motions are more than 40, he needs intensive treatment.

The main complication is renal shut down, which will happen if the blood pressure remains low for more than few hours. During diarrhea, urine should be passed every 6-8 hours. If no urine is passed for eight hours it may indicate an impending renal failure.

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How long can one fast?

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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As per allopathy, one cannot live without air or oxygen for more than 3 minutes, without water for more than three days and without food for more than 3 weeks.

According to the Chandogya Upanishads, food is responsible for the making of motor organs (Karmaindriyas), Sensory Organs, Manas (mind, intellect, memory and ego) and Prana.

The fiery foods are responsible for making the motor indriyas, earthy foods for sensory indriyas and manas and water for making Prana Vayu.

Therefore, it is possible for a person to live on water for up to few weeks because he will keep making Prana and keep breathing but absence of food on 14th day onward will start affecting his Gnanaindriyas and Manas. The person will start losing power of hearing, touching and sensing and will start showing impairment in mental status, memory, intellect functions and egoistic behavior.

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Routine ECG Does Not Help

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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In populations of older adults, prediction of coronary heart disease (CHD) events through traditional risk factors is less accurate than in middle–aged adults. It has been shown that electrocardiographic (ECG) abnormalities are common in older adults and might be of value for CHD prediction. However, performing routine ECG among asymptomatic adults is not supported by current evidence and is not recommended by the US Preventive Services Task Force and the American College of Cardiology Foundation/American Heart Association.

The aim of this study by Auer and colleagues was to determine whether baseline ECG abnormalities or development of new and persistent ECG abnormalities are associated with increased CHD events.

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Whenever our near or dear ones suffer a sickness most of us often pass on the heartfelt promise that we’ll “pray for him or her”. So many people believe in the power of prayer that it’s now caught the attention of scientific doctors.

Today most hospitals and nursing homes are building prayer rooms for their patients. It is based on the principle that the relaxed mind is a creative mind. During prayer, when one is in touch with the consciousness, one is able to take conscious based right decisions. Most doctors even write on their prescriptions “I treat He cures”.

Medically it has been shown that even the subconscious mind of the unconscious person is listening. Any prayer would be captured by him building his or her inner confidence and faith to come out of the terminal sickness. We have seen the classical example of the effect of mass prayer on Amitabh Bachchan’s illness.

“Praying for your health is one of the most common complementary treatments people do on their own,” said Dr. Harold G. Koenig, co–director of the Center for Spirituality, Theology and Health at Duke University Medical Center. About 90% of Americans and almost 100 % Indians pray at some point in their lives, and when they’re under stress, such as when they’re sick, they’re even more likely to pray.

More than one–third of people surveyed in a recent study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine said they often turned to prayer when faced with medical concerns. In the poll involving more than 2,000 Americans, 75 percent of those who prayed said they prayed for wellness, while 22 percent said they prayed for specific medical conditions.

Numerous randomized studies have been done on this subject. In one such study, neither patients nor the health–care providers had any idea who was being prayed for. The coronary–care unit patients didn’t even know there was a study being conducted. And, those praying for the patients had never even met them. The result: While those in the prayer group had about the same length of hospital stay, their overall health was slightly better than the group that didn’t receive special prayers.

“Prayer may be an effective adjunct to standard medical care,” wrote the authors of this 1999 study, also published in the Archives of Internal Medicine. However, a more recent trial from the April 2006 issue of the American Heart Journal suggests that it’s even possible for some harm to come from prayer. In this study, which included 1,800 people scheduled for heart surgery, the group who knew they were receiving prayers developed more complications from the procedure, compared to those who had not been a focus of prayer.

Many patients are reluctant and do not talk on this subject with their doctors. Only 11% patients mention prayer to their doctors. But, doctors are more open to the subject than patients realize, particularly in serious medical situations. In a study of doctors’ attitudes toward prayer and spiritual behavior, almost 85 percent of doctors thought they should be aware of their patients’ spiritual beliefs. Most doctors said they wouldn’t pray with their patients even if they were dying, unless the patient specifically asked the doctor to pray with them. In that case, 77% of doctors were willing to pray for their patient.

Most people are convinced that prayer helps. Some people are ‘foxhole religious’ types and prayer’s almost a reaction or cry to the universe for help. But, many people do it because they’ve experienced benefit from it in the past.

If it’s something you want to do and you feel it might be helpful, there’s no reason you shouldn’t do it. If one has inclination that prayer might work, he or she should do it.

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Artificial Sweeteners in Sweets May Be Harmful

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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The American Heart Association and the American Diabetes Association have issued a joint scientific statement giving a cautious recommendation to the use of nonnutritive sweeteners to help people maintain a healthy body weight and for diabetics to aid glucose control.

These products should be considered like a nicotine patch. They are appreciably better than the real product (sugar), but not part of an optimal diet.

The statement, published in both Circulation and Diabetes Care on July 9, 2012, warns that sweeteners are helpful only as long as people don’t eat additional calories later as compensation.

The term nonnutritive sweeteners cover six sweeteners including aspartame, acesulfame K,neotame, saccharin, sucralose, and plant–derived stevia. These nonnutritive substances have zero calories.

Two thinks may happen in terms of compensation

1.Physiological, where the body might be expecting more calories and so the individual may be hungrier and therefore may eat more

2.Psychological, where the individual thinks they are allowed to eat more sugar-rich food because they had a diet soda instead of a full–sugar soda.

When real people use sweeteners there is compensation. The key is how much? Partial compensation, is ok but people often completely compensate or even overcompensate, so these sweeteners have to be used smartly to be successful.
Compensation seems less of a problem when these sweeteners are consumed in beverages as opposed to food.

People don’t really notice the lack of calories in a diet soda and so don’t tend to eat more, whereas if they consume a low–calorie foodstuff, they do tend to eat more as compensation.

Its better when sweeteners are used in beverages and not sweets or other foods.
One is not completely sure about the safety of these products, because their long–term use in humans has not been studied fully.

However, the artificial sweeteners on the market are almost certainly safer than consuming large amounts of sugar, which has definite harm when consumed in large amounts.

This harm, particularly when consumed in beverage form such as soda, includes increases in risks of obesity, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and gout.

A concern, though, is that just replacing sugar with artificial sweeteners leaves a person, especially children, conditioned to high levels of sweetness, which is likely to influence their food choices adversely.

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Aastik Vs Nastik

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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Traditionally, people believe that Nastik are the persons who do not go to temples or related places of worship. They also do not believe in God.

To differentiate between Astik and Nastik, we need to first understand the concept of Sanatan Dharma and Arya Samaj Dharma. People who believe in Sanatan Dharma consider God as separate from the self and worship him in the form of an idol. They believe in Dualism theory.

Arya Samaj followers do not do idol worship and believe in non–dualism and treat God and self as one.

Arya Samajis, therefore, will not go to a temple where the idols of Gods are placed. Being an Arya Samaji does not mean that the person is Nastik.

The word Nastik means someone who does not believe in God at all, therefore, he or she also does not believe in self as God is nothing but self. In medical sciences, these are the people who have no insight and will usually be suffering from depression and loss of self–esteem.

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