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Dr K K Aggarwal

In Indian culture, the name of a person is decided by the priest on the basis of the time, day and place of birth. As per the Vedic science, there is a sound in the environment called Bija sound which correlates with the time and place of the birth. This Bija sound is usually given in Hindu culture to the parents to be the starting Akshara (word) of the name of the child. As per Hindu mythology, this Akshara is a sacred alphabet and brings good fortune for the child.

The sounds can be classified as vowels or consonants (nasal consonant and consonants). It has been shown that chanting of vowel produces interleukin 2 in the body which has the same action as that of a pain killer and chanting of nasal sound produces tranquilizers in the body (with delta activity in the EEG).

Most of the mantras in Hindu mythology also take this into consideration. An effective manta is if it contains multiples of vowel and or nasal consonants. Stronger mantras will have both multiple of vowel and consonants.

For example, in Shiva, there is no vowel and no nasal consonant but in Shivay, there is one vowel (it ends as single vowel). Shivay is therefore a week mantra and to make it more powerful “AUM Namoh” is  added. Aum Namoh Shivay thus gives a combination of vowels and nasal consonants.

Similarly, Radhey contains only one vowel and hence a week mantra sound. To make it strong, it is pronounced twice as “Radhey Radhey” it gives the benefit of two vowels. Still, it is week mantra as it does not contain a consonant.

There are also other health friendly non nasal consonant based Bija  sounds which works on a particular emotion and they are ‘LA’ for fear, ‘VA’ for attachment, ‘RA’ for doubt, ‘YA’ for love, ‘HA’ for truthfulness and ‘AU’ for non-judgment. All these sound are added with “M” to make it Bija mantras ( LAM, VAM, RAM, YAM, HAM, AUM).

For example, the word Ram gives you the benefit of the word ‘RA’ and a nasal consonant ‘M’. Scientifically it is still weaker than OM mantra. Therefore, it is chanted multiple times like “Ram Ram Ram, Ram Ram Ram” etc.

When selecting the name of a child it is also the duty of the parents to select the name starting with the Bija Akshra with a meaning and that meaning should be inculcated into the mind of the child.

Fox example, if the name of a person is kept ‘Ganesha’ on the name of Lord Ganesha, then it is the duty of the parents to inculcate the qualities of Lord Ganesha into the child. Every person should know meaning of his name and try to acquire those qualities in him/her.

Similarly, when a mantra is chanted, one should know the meaning of the mantra so that the same gets introduced as a instrument in the silent consciousness during motivation or spiritual acquirement. However, it is equally true that even if the mantra is chanted without knowing its meaning, it still gives some benefit. Same is evident when foreigner chant mantras and get benefit without knowing their meaning. All benefit is directly due to Bija sounds changing the biochemistry in the body.

About the author: Dr K K Aggarwal is Padmashri and Dr B C Roy National Awardee, President Heart Care Foundation of India, Dean Board of Medical Education Moolchand Medcity, Sr. Physician & Cardiologist, Chairman Ethics Committee Delhi Medical Council, Visiting professor Clinical Research DIPSAR, Past President Delhi Medical Association and Past Academic and Research Wing Heads IMA.

 

To live above the age of 80 without a heart attack, one need to have ideal health parameters and life style and both can be remembered with the formula of eighty.

Health Parameters: In order to achieve this, it is advisable to maintain fasting blood sugar (FBS) (mg%), fasting low-density lipoprotein (LDL) bad cholesterol (mg/dL), diastolic lower blood pressure (mm Hg), resting heart rate, and abdominal girth (cm) all below 80.  Apart one should also keep the kidney and ling functions above 80.

1. Abdominal (Waist) Circumference: Increase in abdominal obesity (also called central adiposity or visceral, android, or male-type obesity) is associated with an increased risk of morbidity and mortality. Patients with abdominal obesity are more likely to develop heart disease, diabetes, hypertension, and dyslipidemia.

2. Abdominal obesity is assessed by measuring body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference. The waist circumference is measured with a flexible tape placed on a horizontal plane at the level of the iliac crest as seen from the anterior view. In adults with a BMI above 23 kg/m2, waist circumference >80 cm is associated with a greater risk of hypertension, type 2 diabetes, dyslipidemia (abnormal cholesterol levels), and heart disease.

3.  Blood Pressure: Diastolic lower blood pressure should be kept below 80 mm Hg. If it is between 80 and 90 mm Hg, it is called pre hypertension and if it is above 90 mm Hg, it is called hypertension. A person with pre hypertension is three times more likely to develop heart attack and 1.7 times more likely to develop heart disease than a person whose diastolic lower blood pressure is <80 mm Hg. If pre hypertension is aggressively treated, 45% of all heart attacks can be prevented.

4.  According to the guidelines of The 2007 United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF), individuals with diastolic lower blood pressure <80 mm Hg are recommended for screening every 2 years, whereas individuals with diastolic lower blood pressure between 80 and 89 mm Hg are recommended for yearly screening. Patients with pre hypertension have a greater prevalence of cardiovascular risk factors than those with normal blood pressures. Presence of at least one adverse risk factor (high cholesterol levels, overweight/obesity, and diabetes mellitus) is significantly more likely among pre hypertensive patients than normotensive individuals. There is an association between pre hypertension and microalbuminuria (presence of albumin in urine in micro amounts), which is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease and early cardiovascular mortality.

5. Blood Sugar: Fasting blood sugar above 80 mg% increases the risk of macrovascular diseases (heart attack, paralysis, and peripheral vascular disease), but not microvascular diseases (retinopathy, neuropathy, and nephropathy- eye, nerve and kidney involvement). However, Fasting blood sugar above 126 mg% increases the risk for both macrovascular and microvascular diseases. For optimum cardiovascular protection, the blood sugar should be below 80 mg%.

6.  Cholesterol: The optimal value for LDL bad cholesterol is < 80 mg% for Indian population,  A one standard deviation (38.5 mg/dL) LDL increase is associated with an age-adjusted relative risk for heart disease of 1.42 for men and 1.37 for women.  Patients at high risk of developing heart disease might also be expected to benefit from more intensive lipid-lowering therapy. Such patients should be treated with the lowest dose of a statin that reduces their LDL-C below 80

7. Resting heart rate: Higher the resting heart rate more the chances of sudden death. Ideal rate is to keep it lower than 80 per minute.

8.  Kidney functions: If the kidney functions are below 80% the person is at risk for heart blockages.

9.  Lung functions: One should keep the lung capacity above 80% to get the maximum benefit of Pranayama.

Healthy life style: Again whatever you do follow the principle of 80.

1. Diet: Eating fewer calories has been shown to reduce the chances of developing heart attack. One gram of food contains six calories on an average ( 9 grams in fat, 4 each in carbohydrates and proteins). One should not eat more than 80 g or 80 ml of caloric food in any meal. The less you eat the more you olive is a Vedic saying.

Also it’s a Vedic saying that one should not eat cereals ( wheat, rice) for up to 80 days in a year and was the basis for Vedic spiritual fasts. Eating cereals every day especially the refined carbohydrates ( white sugar white maida and white rice) is responsible for high insulin levels  with insulin resistance.

2. Exercise: Adequate walking cum exercise duration per day is 80 minutes. Cardiovascular training exercise involves walking 80 steps a minute for 80 minutes a week.  Cardiovascular exercise involves attaining 80% of target heart rate (220- age is 100% target heart rate).

3. Time to yourself: One should give atleast 80 minutes of time to oneself in a day

(includes time for meditation,  getting absorbed in the present work, relaxing, fulfilling your hobby etc). This can also be done  smiling and laughing when ever an opportunity arises to 80 times a day.

4. Pranayama: One should do 80 alternate nostril pranayama a day. Or one should do 80 UMMMMM chanting a day.

5. Alcohol: For those who consume social drinks (with no contraindications) the dose is less than 80 g in 1 week (10 g is 30 mL 80 proof whisky). In women, it is 80 g in 2 weeks. Also one should not take more than 80 mL of whisky in 1 day (males). For females it is half of that of males.

6. Clapping: those who believe that clapping is good for the health should do 80 clapping a day.

Seva, Simran & Satsang: The Basic Spiritual Prescription

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Most spiritual movements today follow the path of Seva, Satsang and Simran to achieve inner happiness. It forms the basis for both, Nirankari movement as well as Sikhism. It was earlier propagated by Adi Shankracharya in his book Bhaj Govindum, where he described all three in one path: Satnaam (Simran), Satsangh and Seva: Shlokas 28.

He said that it is the Bhagavad Gita and the thousand holy names of the Lord which are to be chanted and Lord Narayana who has to be meditated upon. He also said that the company of good people should be sought after and one’s wealth should be used for the upliftment of the poor.

Whether it is Brahma Kumari’s ISKON, or any other movement, they all use these principles today. The most important out of these is the ‘Seva bhavna’ or spreading unconditional love.

The word Seva is derived from root word ‘sev’ which literally means ‘to serve, wait or attend upon, honor or worship’. It is usually translated as ‘service’ or ‘serving’.

Service rendered to humanity (i.e. God’s fraction of light in man) is considered a form of worship. In Sikhism, there is no worship without Seva (GGS, 1013).

Seva is imperative for spiritual life. It is the highest penance (GGS, 423). The Sikh often prays to God for a chance to render Seva.

Three varieties of Seva are described: One rendered through the corporal instrument (tan), one through the mental apparatus (mann) and one through the material means (dhan).

The first of them is considered to be the highest of all. Cursed are the hands and feet that do not engage in Seva. (Bhai Gurdas, Varan, 27.1). The best description again comes from Sikhism, “I beg of you, O, Merciful One, make me the slave of Your Slaves… Let me have the pleasure of fanning them, drawing water for them, grinding corn for them and of washing their feet,” prays Guru Arjun Dev (GGS, 518).

Seva through ‘mann’ lies in contributing one’s talents – creative, communicative, managerial, etc. – to the corporate welfare of the community and mankind in general. It also lies in sharing the pain of others.

Seva through ‘dhan’ or philanthropy (daan) is well described in Sikhism where the offerings (kar bheta) are made to the Gurus and the ‘daswandh’ (tenth part of one’s earnings) is contributed to the welfare of the community.

In Sikh thought, the polarity of renunciation is not with attachment, but with Seva.

True Seva, according to the Sikh scriptures, must be done without any desire of fruit (nishkam), in humility (nimarta), with purity of intention (hirda suddh), with sincerity (chit lae) and in utter selflessness (vichon ap gavae). Such Seva, for the Sikh, is the doorway to dignity as well as to Mukti (liberation). “If one earns merit here through Seva, one will get the seat of honour in His (God’s) Court hereafter (GGS 26).”

Originally, the concept of Seva comes from studying the third maha vakya, which originated from Chandogya Upanishad in Sama Veda which is ‘Tat-tvam-asi’ which means that “It is not that just I am Brahman and you are Brahman but the entire substratum of this world is also Brahman”. This is called ‘Upadesha Vakya’ or sentence that is taught by teachers (Gurus) to their disciples to prevent arrogance and develop respect and compassion for others.

This maha vakya teaches all of us to see God in others. When you are helping others, you are serving God and not the physical body in that person.

“Achieve non-duality by seeing God in everyone,” says Adi Sankracharya. “It is the very same Narayana who is in you, in me and in everyone. Then why do you develop the feeling of jealousy? And why do you fight unnecessarily? See the same Aatma in everyone and in everything, discard the feeling of difference and overcome the illusion and ignorance of duality.

Regarding Satnam or Simran, Adi Sankracharya says that by disciplining the mind, one can cross over this samsaara and become liberated (31). “Ride over your wealth, youthful appearance and men, i.e., high connections! All these things may get destroyed in a second! Regard them as illusive and thereby attain brahmagyana as destined”. (Adi: shlokas 12).

According the Adi Sankracharya, Satsang leads to liberation (shlokas 10, Bhaj Govindum). He says that “by being in the company of good people, one can develop detachment to worldly objects. By detachment to material objects, one attains clarity of mind. By clarity of mind, one reaches and realizes the eternal truth. This results in liberation in this very life!” Seek the company of the holy. It is never late (shlokas 21).

Adi Sankracharya says that equanimity leads to Divinity. This can be done by the practice of “Pranayama” and “Pratyahara”. Likewise, contemplate as to what is real and what is unreal by proper application of your intellect. Engage yourself in worship and samaadhi. Practice all these things with due and great care.

The best description of meditation comes from following the guidelines as mentioned in Yoga Sutras of Patanjali.

To conclude, one should believe in the concepts of Simran, Satsang and Seva. Simran is always keeping your focus on God and keeping God in your heart at all times. Satsang is the place which makes you do that, and Seva is the act of serving your fellow beings and humanity. Believe in total equality of all beings and respect for all of life. Remember if you can’t see God in all, you can’t see God at all.

The triad of Seva, Satsang and Simran is also the summary of the combined yoga paths of Karma yoga (Seva), Bhakti Yoga (Satsang) and Gnana yoga (Simran or meditation).

In the Bhagwad Gita (Text 55, Chapter 11) also, Lord Krishna says “who engages in My pure devotional service, free from the contaminations of fruitive activities and mental speculation (SATSANG), he who works for Me, who makes Me the supreme goal of his life (SIMRAN), and who is friendly to every living being (SEVA)—he certainly comes to Me.”

There is a seasonal pattern of deaths from heart attacks with more fatal events (20 to 30 percent variation) occurring in the winter than the summer. But this seasonal pattern is absent in diabetics or those taking beta blockers or aspirin.

The heart attack trends are independent of gender, geographic location, age, and the type of heart attack (ST elevation or non-ST elevation). In-hospital mortality fatality rates for heart attack also follow a seasonal pattern, with a peak of 9 percent in winter and 8.4% in the summer.

Deaths from heart attack are highest in January and lowest in September, with a relative risk difference of 18.6 percent.

About the author: Dr K K Aggarwal is Padmashri and Dr B C Roy National Awardee, President Heart Care Foundation of India, Dean Board of Medical Education Moolchand Medcity, Sr. Physician & Cardiologist, Chairman Ethics Committee Delhi Medical Council, Visiting professor Clinical Research DIPSAR, Past President Delhi Medical Association and Past Academic and Research Wing Heads IMA.

 

 

The circadian variation in frequency of heart attack, sudden cardiac death, and heart pain is characterized by a morning peak.

Maximum heart attacks and sudden heart death occur between the hours of 6 am and noon compared to the rest of the day.

Cardiac events are triggered stimulation of sympathetic nervous system.

Fibrinolytic or the clot dissolving capacity is also low in the morning. Among patients with stable heart blockages plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 activity peaks in the early morning while tissue plasminogen activator activity is at its nadir.

Lessons

1.    If you are a heart patient do not smoke after getting up. It can increase the sympathetic activity

2.    If you are a heart patient do not take a cup of tea or coffee immediately after getting up. It can increase the sympathetic activity

3.    Heart patients should take their drugs in the night so that the drug is available in the blood in the morning hours

4.    Heart patients should not exercise early in the morning if they have not taken their morning drug or the previous night drugs

5.    Heart patients should not do kapal bhati or bhastrika pranayama without medical supervision

6.     Early morning anger can be harmful.

7.    Early morning is more harmful in winter and near full moon.

8.    Early morning is more harmful in diabetic patients

9.    Early morning is more harmful in uncontrolled blood pressure patients

10.  Beta blockers and aspirin can prevent early morning heart attack and sudden heart death

About the author: Dr K K Aggarwal is Padmashri and Dr B C Roy National Awardee, President Heart Care Foundation of India, Dean Board of Medical Education Moolchand Medcity, Sr. Physician & Cardiologist, Chairman Ethics Committee Delhi Medical Council, Visiting professor Clinical Research DIPSAR, Past President Delhi Medical Association and Past Academic and Research Wing Heads IMA.

Formulas and rules for preventing heart attacks

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One can prevent heart attacks. Nine preventable risk factors are responsible for 90% of heart attacks. They are (in order of importance)
1. Increased LDL/HDL ratios (elevated bad LDL and low good HDL cholesterol levels)
2. Smoking
3. Diabetes
4. Hypertension
5. Abdominal obesity
6. Psychosocial (stress or depression)
7. Failure to eat fruits and vegetables daily
8. Failure to exercise
9. Failure to drink any alcohol
One can prevent heart attack by following Dr KK’s formula of eighty
1. Keep lower BP, bad cholesterol levels, resting heart rate, fasting sugar and abdominal girth levels all less than 80.
2. Keep kidney and lung functions more than 80%.
3. Engage in recommended amounts of physical activity (minimum 80 minutes of moderately strenuous exercise per week). Our recommendation is to walk 80 minutes a day and for 80 minutes per week the speed should be 80 steps per minute
4. Eat less and not more than 80 gm or ml of caloric food each meal. Follow a healthy diet (high fiber, low saturated fat, zero trans fat, low refined carbohydrate, low salt, high in fruits). Refined carbohydrates are white rice white maida and white sugar.
5. Observe cereal fast 80 days a year.
6. Doing 80 cycles of pranayama a day
7. Spend 80 minutes to yourself every day (relaxation, meditation, helping others etc)
8. Do not smoke or be ready to spit out 80,000 Rs for treatment. Not smoking or else you will have to spend 80,000 on your illness.
9. Those who drink, does not want to stop and there is no contraindication, limiting alcohol use to no more than 80 ml per day for men (50% for women) or 80 grams per week. 10 grams of alcohol is present in 30 ml or 1 oz of 80 proof liquor.
10. Take 80 mg of aspirin if prescribed for prevention.
11. Tale 80 mg atorvastatin for prevention when prescribed.

One can prevent diabetes by controlling five lifestyle factors. They are
1. Follow a healthy diet
2. Maintain an optimal body weight (less than 23 x height in meters x height in meters)
3. Engage in recommended amounts of physical activity.
4. Limiting alcohol to recommended amount.
5. Not smoking.

Rules
1. Rule of 30 seconds: Chest pain, burning, discomfort, heaviness in the center of the chest lasting for over 30 seconds and not localized to a point unless proved otherwise is a heat pain.
2. Rule of pin pointing finger: any chest pain which can be pin pointed by a finger is not a heart pain.
3. Rule of forty: First onset acidity or first onset asthma after the age of 40 , first rule out heart attack or heart asthma
4. Rule of 300: Chew a tablet of water soluble 300 mg aspirin and take 300 mg Clopidogrel tablet at the onset of cardiac chest pain. You will not die.
5. Rule of ten: Within ten minute of death for the next ten minutes do effective chest compression with a speed of (10 x10) 100 per minute. 80% people can be saved.
6. Rule of 180: Reach hospital within 180 minutes in heart attack for receiving clot dissolving angioplasty or clot dissolving drugs.

Do not ignore yellow plaques on the eyelids

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Xanthelasma are soft, cholesterol–filled plaques that develop under the skin, usually on or around the eyelids and most often near the nose. They occur mainly in middle–aged and older adults and in women more often than in men. They are always benign and rarely impair vision. But they can be a sign of hyperlipidemia—elevated blood–fat levels in 50% of the people.

The presence of xanthelasma on the eyelids is an independent predictor of future heart blockages. In a large prospective study By Dr Anne Tybjærg–Hansen, of Rigshospitalet in Copenhagen published in BMJ during a mean follow–up of 22 years, adults participating in a long–term Danish heart study who had xanthelasmata at baseline had an adjusted hazard ratio for acute heart attack of 1.48. In the study those with the eyelid lesions had lower levels of apolipoprotein A1 and HDL cholesterol as against those who had arcus corneae they had higher levels of lipoprotein (a).

The plaques are especially common in people with inherited disorders of low–density lipoprotein (LDL) metabolism. They occur in 75% of older people with familial hypercholesterolemia (very high cholesterol levels) and in 10% of people with high levels of apolipoprotein B.

Treating any underlying lipid condition may reduce the size of xanthelasma. If no lipid abnormality is present then xanthelasma is largely a cosmetic problem.

There are several ways to remove xanthelasma. These include cryotherapy (freezing the lesions with liquid nitrogen), laser ablation, surgical excision, electrodesiccation (destruction of the lesion with an electric needle), and chemical cauterization (application of a topical agent such as trichloroacetic acid to dissolve the plaques).

Take home message

  • All patients with xanthelasmas should get lipid profile done.
  • Look for low HDL and low Apo A1 levels.
  • Look of high Apo B levels.
  • Get LP(a) levels it will usually be normal.

 

Science Behind the Anti Corruption Movement

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As stated by Advaita (Non-dualism) philosophy, God is within us and therefore we all need to acquire the qualities of the 10 incarnations of Lord Vishnu to become a perfect person. These 10 incarnations also tell us about the 10 levels of awareness a person can have. Lord Vishnu is known as preserver of the universe and all his 10 incarnations teach us the principles of ‘doing’ in order to become a perfect human being.
The 10 Avtars of Lord Vishnu (Dashavtars) are as: Fish (Matsya Avtar); the Tortoise (Kurma Avtar); Boar (Varaha Avtar); Man-lion (Narsingha Avtar); Dwarf (Vaman Avtar); Parshuram Avtar, Rama Avtar, Krishna Avtar and, Buddha Avtar. The tenth, Kalki Avtar is yet to come.

All these incarnations have a scientific logic.

1. To become a perfect human being, the first quality one should acquire is that of a ‘fish’. A fish can swim against the stride which indicates that one should acquire the quality of taking independent decisions and not just follow what others say. One should not believe in mass imitation or bhedchal and instead learn to be different from others. This principle is taught in medical teaching too that when a patient comes to you, don’t believe in the previous diagnosis but think afresh. The fish also teaches us to reverse our path in life and go back to the basics and the origin.

2. The second quality one should acquire is that of tortoise’. This has been well described in Bhagwad Gita in chapter 2 and in Srimad Bhagwad under Samundra Manthan and advocates learning the quality of ‘when to say no’ and ‘when to withdraw completely from a situation’. It is well-known that a tortoise withdraws all his four limbs, head and tail whenever he anticipates fear.

3. The third quality to be acquired is that of “Boar”, who has the quality of not accepting defeat, even at the cost of his life.  It talks about principles of persistence. In continuation with the first two Avtars, it means that once one has learned the qualities of taking independent decisions and when to withdraw, one should not ‘withdraw’ permanently. The Boar quality in a person means that the person should wait for the right opportunity and resume his commitment like a Boar till he achieves his goals.

4. The next quality to be acquired is that of ‘Narsingh’ who showed that nothing is impossible on earth. That means while you are persistent in your efforts, you should follow the conviction that every thing is possible on this earth. The Narsingh Avtar showed the same and found solutions to break every boon bestowed on Hiranyakashyapa.

5. The qualities of ‘Vaman, which are to learn qualities of Saam, Daam, Dand and Bhed i.e. to learn the art of tactics come next. Vaman (Dwarf God) used his tactics to win over Bali.

6. Once these qualities have been acquired, one is now fit to fight for right principles and that is when you acquire the quality of ‘Parshuram’ who was a terror for evil kings. This is also equivalent to persistently fighting with the system, leaders, politicians, king and rulers.

7. Once you have done that you are now fit to rule the system, the righteous way i.e. to acquire all the qualities of ‘Rama’.

8. Once you have learnt the qualities of a ruler, you should also learn the tactics used by a ruler as possessed by the next incarnation ‘Lord Krishna’

9. The qualities of a rule are incomplete unless one has also learnt the qualities of a preacher or a teacher and these can be learned from the incarnation of ‘Lord Buddha’. Lord Buddha depicts the humanitarian, spiritual aspects of a ruler and explains the concept that the main purpose of a ruler is to remove the sufferings of the society.

10. The tenth incarnation of Lord Vishnu, ‘Kalki’ is yet to come and most leaders of today are trying to compete for the same. The tenth incarnation during Kalyuga will be a person who will be perfect in the above nine characteristics and will be treated by the society as God.

In the recent past, many people have been considered with God-like qualities. A few examples are that of Maharashi Mahesh Yogi, Swami Chinmayananda, Bhagwan Rajnish, Bhagwan Sathya Sai Baba, Mahatma Gandhi, Anna Hazare and Swami Ramdev. All of them possessed some features of the nine incarnations of lord Vishnu.

Let us take the example of Swami Ramdev, the latest in the list. He shows that he possesses the quality of a fish (took an independent and a reverse government view); of tortoise (he withdrew from Ramlila Grounds at night in the disguise of female); of boar (he persisted in his agitation even after) and of Narsingh Avtar (he is trying to win an impossible agitation).

However, he probably lacks the other qualities of Vishnu. As per Anna Hazare media statement, he is weak in his tactics, though like ‘Parshuram’ he is fighting against the evil rulers and the government. Also, in today’s scenario one would not like to equate him as having the qualities of Rama, Krishna or Buddha.  He has no reputation of being a good ruler. Despite being a Sanyasi, his speech in the media lacks humility, compassion and love. His language is full of criticism, complaints, and condemning, qualities unheard of in Rama, Krishna or Buddha. He is one person who is trying to change the system, but with his efforts the system can change only up to a limit.

In terms of mythology we will have to wait for another Kalki Avtar from amongst  us who will not only change the system but will also be accepted universally as a Godman and will satisfy all the nine qualities of incarnations of Lord Vishnu.

Swami Ramdev vs Anna Hazare

We, as medical professionals have closely watched two movements against corruption: one led by Anna Hazare and the other by Swami Ramdev. I had expressed earlier that we should have someone like Anna Hazare or Baba Ramdev in the medical profession too, who would be able to fight corruption in the medical system. Corruption in the medical profession is rampant and is increasing day by day and will continue to increase till the medical education system is changed with no capitation fee allowed.

Scientifically, both the movements led by Anna Hazare and Baba Ramdev were different from each other. Anna Hazare, an independent low-profile Gandhian philosopher started the anti corruption movement practically with no followers across the nation. He started the movement for a cause without spending any money. He acquired the goodwill and support of youth and the intellectuals all across the country to the extent that the government did get scared and tried to patch-up with him. He followed the ways of both Dharma and Righteousness.

On the contrary, Baba Ramdev created lot of hype before starting his movement, gathered momentum amongst his followers, most of who were from lower middle class, non youth population and spent crores of rupees for his proposed agitation. He started his Satyagraha on a false note cum permission at Ramlila Grounds, running a Yoga Shivir as a cover up.

When he began his agitation, he himself was alleged to be a controversial figure for having collected mammoth property and money in a short period of time and investments of his close followers in over 200 companies. In his agitation, media was with him by default and not with their soul. In his movement, Anna Hazare was also not with him. He was probably used as a chess pawn by the opposition parties.

But, one wrong move by the government reversed all the calculations. It united the opposition into one and united both Anna Hazare and Baba Ramdev, who till now were heading separate movements. Will this union bring about a new ‘Jaiprakash Narayan’ era and bring the combined opposition in the power in 2014, only time will tell.

Medically, the allopath medical system has never supported Baba Ramdev as he is one Yogacharya and Ayurvedacharya who has been commercializing and advertising his teaching. He is very well aware that commercialization and advertisements in any system of medicine is illegal. He has been buying his yoga slots on TV and advertising commercial pharma and herbal companies, establishments and products. He has been alleged to collect money in the disguise of donations. Many have been alleging that most of the donations he has received have been in cash and from the black money of the donors.

The medical profession may oppose Baba Ramdev as an Ayurvedic Yoga practitioner but will definitely support him for his anti-corruption movement.

We as medical professionals should not lag behind in supporting this movement provided the movement is righteous and does not end up with individual gains or ego clashes.

But at the same time, we should be cautious that some day in the future would not bring ‘Anna Hazare minded’ people who have their own agendas.

Anti-nausea drug ondansetron linked to arrhythmias

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Ondansetron can trigger dangerous and possibly lethal changes in heart rhythms as per FDA warning. It can cause prolongation of the QT interval in ECG which can lead to an abnormal and potentially fatal heart rhythm, including Torsade de Pointes,” the FDA said.

Patients at greatest risk include those with “underlying heart conditions, such as congenital long QT syndrome, [and] those who are predisposed to low levels of potassium and magnesium in the blood” as well as patients who are taking other medications also associated with QT prolongation.

Ondansetron is a 5-HT3 serotonin receptor antagonist, commonly prescribed to prevent nausea and vomiting caused by cancer chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and surgery.

The FDA label recommend ECG monitoring in certain patients including those with hypokalemia or hypomagnesemia, congestive heart failure, bradyarrhythmias, and in patients who are taking other medications that increase the risk of QT.

One must stop smoking 15 years before death to get Moksha

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Quit Smoking to Get Moksha: Smoking or health, you can not have both. One minute of smoking a cigarette take away one minute of one’s life. Smoking is the biggest menace of the mankind. It has over 4000 chemicals most of them are cancer producing. It is responsible for practically all life style disorders including cancer and heart attacks.

Smoking is responsible for six out of ten premature deaths among men over 40. According to a research team at Korea University, a total of 57.7 percent of men who died prematurely in 1999 had passed away due to smoking-related diseases. For women, the rate was one out of 10, or 11.4 percent. The findings confirm the impact smoking has on premature death especially as smokers reach middle age.

One of the largest studies ever done on smoking finds that smokers have a much higher risk of dying in middle age than non-smokers The research in the Annals of Internal Medicine also finds that quitting smoking at any age dramatically decreases the risk of death.  Nearly 50,000 men and women smokers were followed for about 25 years. The results: 26 percent of women who were heavy smokers died in their 40s, 50s or 60s, compared with only 9 percent of non-smoking women.  For men, it was 42 percent who died in middle age compared with 14 percent of male non-smokers.

Smokers end up with untimely death. When we read our shastras the description of untimely death comes in Garuda Purana a dialogue between Garuda (the king of birds) and Lord Krishna.

The latter half of this Purana deals with life after death. The Hindus of north-India generally read this Purana while cremating the bodies of the dead. This has given great importance to the origin of Garuda. There are nineteen thousand verses describing the ways to the Lord.

Chapter 20, part 2, shloka 43 says “O Garuda, a person becomes a ghost and undergoes the sufferings thereof, if he dies an accidental or untimely death or if his body is not cremated properly”. The same has been the belief of all Hindus ever since.

Srimad Bhagavad is the highest of all Puranas. The Visnu Purana comes next, and then comes Garuda. The three are principal Puranas in the Kali age.

Believing what is written in Garuda Purana all smokers die of unnatural death and therefore will not get moksha unless they quit while alive.

Medically at 20 minutes after quitting blood pressure decreases, pulse rate drops and body temperature of hands and feet increases. At 8 hours carbon monoxide level in blood drops to normal and oxygen level in blood increases to normal.

At 24 hours the chance of a heart attack decreases and at 48 hours nerve endings start regrowing and ability to smell and taste improve.

At 1 year smoke free excess risk of coronary heart blockages is decreased to half that of a smoker. From 5 to 15 years after quitting, paralysis risk is reduced to that of people who have never smoked.

At 10 years risk of lung cancer drops to as little as one-half that of continuing smokers, risk of cancer of the mouth, throat, esophagus, bladder, kidney, and pancreas decreases  and the risk of ulcer decreases.

At 15 years the risk of coronary heart blockages is now similar to that of people who have never smoked and the risk of death returns to the level of people who have never smoked.

If we add Scientific with Vedic knowledge attempt should be made to quit smoking at the earliest as it takes nearly 15 years after one has quitted to get over the spiritual damage done by smoking. Therefore to get spiritual moksha as per Garuda Purana you must quit atleast 15 years before death.

One is born to live 108 years and therefore it is never too late to quit. Don’t let smoking waste any more of your precious life. Quit now and get this journey underway!

Azharuddin son Ayazuddin a victim of missed resuscitation during the Golden Hour

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Ayazuddin (19), son of former cricketer and Moradabad MP Mohammad Azharuddin, died on 16th October (2011) five days after being critically injured in a road accident in Hyderabad. He was critically injured when his 1000 CC Suzuki skidded on the Outer Ring Road at Puppalguda on Sunday. His cousin died on the same day.

Ayazuddin suffered a cardiac arrest on his way to the hospital. He responded to resuscitation and was later operated on to stop the bleeding from his lung and kidney. His kidneys were also damaged. Commuters on the route alerted the police and a patrol vehicle from a nearby police station arrived soon. The police team failed to get an ambulance and had to take the profusely bleeding cousins in their patrol vehicle to the hospital, losing an hour in the process.

Medically the lesson is that opportunity to save him was list as the precious first hour was missed of resuscitation.  The “Golden Hour” concept emphasizes the increased risk of death and the need for rapid intervention during the first hour of care following major trauma. Rapid intervention improves the outcome of injured patients (obstructed airway, tension pneumothorax, severe hemorrhage).

Death in road traffic accident can be a part of trimodal distribution of mortality (death at the scene; death 1 to 4 hours after injury; and death weeks later, generally in an intensive care setting) or bimodal distribution (death at the scene or within the first 4 hours).

The current thinking is that relatively few patients die after the first 24 hours following injury. The large majority of deaths occurs either at the scene or within the first four hours after the patient reaches a trauma center. This is true only when the patient gets medical care within the first hour. The care involves fluid resuscitation and control of the bleeding.

Insulin nasal spray may slow Alzheimer’s disease

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Intranasal insulin therapy may have beneficial effects on cognition and function among patients with Alzheimer’s disease, a pilot study suggested. Patients who received 20 IU of intranasal insulin daily for four months had improvements on delayed story recall tests (P=0.02, Cohen f effect size=0.36), according to Suzanne Craft, PhD, of the Veterans Affairs Puget Sound Health Care System in Seattle, and colleagues.

Study suggests that intranasal administration of insulin over a four-month period to patients with amnestic mild cognitive impairment or mild-to-moderate Alzheimer’s disease improved delayed memory and preserved general cognition compared with placebo.

Insulin is critical for normal brain function, and dysregulation of its metabolism has been shown to contribute to the development of Alzheimer’s disease. Because patients with Alzheimer’s disease also exhibit decreased levels of insulin in the central nervous system, it has been hypothesized that raising these levels to normal might help maintain cognitive ability. (MedPage)

Is sex an exercise and is it hard on the heart?

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This is a piece taken from HealthBeat to share with our readers. At some time in his life, nearly every man gets exercised about sex. And as many men get older, they wonder if sex is a good form of exercise or if it’s too strenuous for the heart.

Treadmill vs. mattress

To evaluate the cardiovascular effects of sexual activity, researchers monitored volunteers while they walked on a treadmill in the lab and during private sexual activity at home. In addition to 13 women, the volunteers included 19 men with an average age of 55. About three-quarters of the men were married, and nearly 70% had some form of cardiovascular disease; 53% were taking beta blockers. Despite their cardiac histories, the men reported exercising about four times a week, and they reported having sexual activity about six times a month on average.

Researchers monitored heart rate and blood pressure during standard treadmill exercise tests and during “usual” sexual activity with a familiar partner at home. All the sex acts concluded with vaginal intercourse and male orgasm. Disappointingly perhaps, the treadmill proved more strenuous. On an intensity scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being the highest, men evaluated treadmill exercise as 4.6 and sex as 2.7. Sex was even less strenuous for women in terms of heart rate, blood pressure, and perceived intensity of exertion.

Sex as exercise

Men seem to spend more energy thinking and talking about sex than on the act itself. During sexual intercourse, a man’s heart rate rarely gets above 130 beats a minute, and his systolic blood pressure nearly always stays under 170. All in all, average sexual activity ranks as mild to moderate in terms of exercise intensity. As for oxygen consumption, it comes in at about 3.5 METS (metabolic equivalents), which is about the same as doing the foxtrot, raking leaves, or playing ping pong. Sex burns about five calories a minute; that’s four more than a man uses watching TV but it’s about the same as walking the course to play golf. If a man can walk up two or three flights of stairs without difficulty, he should be in shape for sex.

Sex as sex

Raking leaves may increase a man’s oxygen consumption, but it probably won’t get his motor running. Sex, of course, is different, and the excitement and stress might well pump out extra adrenaline. Both mental excitement and physical exercise increase adrenaline levels and can trigger heart attacks and arrhythmias, abnormalities of the heart’s pumping rhythm. Can sex do the same? In theory, it can. But in practice, it’s really very uncommon, at least during conventional sex with a familiar partner.

Careful studies show that fewer than one of every 100 heart attacks is related to sexual activity, and for fatal arrhythmias the rate is just one in 200. Put another way, for a healthy 50-year-old man, the risk of having a heart attack in any given hour is about one in a million; sex doubles the risk, but it’s still just two in a million. For men with heart disease, the risk is 10 times higher — but even for them, the chance of suffering a heart attack during sex is just 20 in a million. Those are pretty good odds.

How about Viagra?

Until recently, human biology has provided unintentional (and perhaps unwanted) protection for men with heart disease. That’s because many of the things that cause heart disease, such as smoking, diabetes, high blood pressure, and abnormal cholesterol levels, also cause erectile dysfunction. The common link is atherosclerosis, which can damage arteries in the penis as well as in the heart.

Sildenafil, vardenafil, and tadalafil  have changed that. About 70% of men with erectile dysfunction (ED) respond to the ED pills well enough to enable sexual intercourse. Sex may be safe for most men with heart disease, but are ED pills a safe way to have sex?

For men with stable coronary artery disease and well-controlled hypertension, the answer is yes — with one very, very important qualification. Men who are taking nitrate medications in any form cannot use ED pills. This restriction covers all preparations of nitroglycerin, including long-acting nitrates; nitroglycerin sprays, patches, and pastes; and amyl nitrate. Fortunately, other treatments for erectile function are safe for men with heart disease, even if they are using nitrates.

Safe sex

Sex is a normal part of human life. For all men, whether they have heart disease or not, the best way to keep sex safe is to stay in shape by avoiding tobacco, exercising regularly, eating a good diet, staying lean, and avoiding too much (or too little) alcohol. Needless to say, men should not initiate sexual activity if they are not feeling well, and men who experience possible cardiac symptoms during sex should interrupt the sexual activity at once.

With these simple guidelines and precautions, sex is safe for the heart — but it should be safe for the rest of the body, too. Sexually transmitted diseases pose a greater threat than sexually induced heart problems. When it comes to sex, men should use their brains as well as their hearts.

[Source HealthBeat: Harvard]

One good action neutralizes 20 bad actions

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In Mahabharata, we had five Pandavas fighting with hundred Kauravas.

In terms of internal Mahabharata, the hundred Kauravas represents hundred negative tendencies a person can have. In Jainism, they are called ninety nine Atichars.

Negative tendencies are lead by Duryodhana (‘Du’ – Dusht and ‘Yodhan’ – Yudha) and Dushasana (‘Du’ – Dusht and ‘Shasan’ – Ruler).

They are tackled by five positive forces represented by Five Pandavas
1. Yudhishthir (the one who is ‘sthir’ in Yudha’) means a person who is steadfast and is balanced in both win and lose situations. He was also righteous in all its action.
2.Arjuna is the one who has mastered the technique of concentration (focused) and one point determination.
3.Bheema (Bal or your strength) or the one who has determined will power and strength.
4.Sahadev, the one who has conquered the power to help others
5.Nakul, the one who has conquered the power to remain neutral when required.

These five good qualities, therefore, can win over hundred bad qualities in a ratio of 20:1.

One can identify ninety nine bad qualities under seventeen main segments and they are
1. Violence
2. Untruthfulness
3. Theft
4. Unjust behavior
5. Possessiveness
6. Wrong belief
7. Anger
8. Arrogance
9. Illusion
10. Greed
11. Attachments
12. Hope
13. Agitation
14. Acquisition
15. Gossip
16. Criticism
17. Likes and dislikes.

These seventeen negative thoughts can be there, knowingly or unknowingly, in thought, speech and actions. All these permutations and combinations turn out to be 99.

The net result is that hundred negative tendencies of the mind can be controlled by five positive qualities as described above.

Out of these five positive qualities, it is only the qualities of Arjuna and Bheema which matter. Even in Mahabharata, most of the war was won because of both of them. Sahdeva only helped where necessary; Nakul was a balancing factor and Yudhishthir was responsible so that the war remained ethical.

The take home message Is that by doing good positive actions in your present you can wash off the bad negative actions of your past. Start doing them from today.

Fast food is good for health but not junk food

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Natural Fast food means which is available readymade and does not require any preparation. The examples are milk, fruits, salad, dry fruits etc.

There are also semi-fast foods which need preparation but once prepared are ready to eat in future. The examples are curd, roasted cereals, roasted rice, roasted gram and sattu.

Sattu, a mixture of gur-chana (jaggery and gram), chana-murmur (gram and roasted rice) and laddus of roasted gram and jwar in traditional Vedic era were the fast readymade meals available at that time.

In terms of drinks, the natural fast drinks are lemon water, tulsi water, juices of wheat grass, durva grass, khusha gras, khaskhas etc.

Today’s so called fast foods actually are junk food (unnatural fast foods) and not health and heart friendly. Examples include Pizza, Burger, potato chips etc.

They contain a mix of refined high glycemic carbohydrates and animal saturated fat. Refined carbohydrates intake can cause high insulin levels and insulin resistance leading to metabolic syndrome which makes one prone to hypertension, diabetes, high triglyceride levels, low good HDL cholesterol levels, heart blockages and abdominal obesity. Examples of refined carbohydrates are white sugar, white flour (maida) and white rice.

High animal fat intake is responsible for raising LDL bad cholesterol. 1% rise in total and or bad LDL cholesterol raised the chances of heart attack by 2% and 1% lowering of good HDL cholesterol raises the chances of heart attack by 3%.

Junk food is often prepared in trans fat rich hydrogenated oils which in turn causes increase in bad LDL and lowers HDL good cholesterol.

High triglyceride and bad LDL cholesterol and low good HDL cholesterol is a deadly combination and responsible for the rising epidemic of heart blockages in Indians (a disease said to be of the west).

Junk food is also high in salt and low in complex carbohydrates, two factors responsible for high blood pressure, heart disease and cancers.

Remember junk food is never offered to GODs and in temples. What is offered to GOD is natural food like fruits and leaves.

Junk food is now responsible for heart blockages, hypertension, diabetes, obesity, pot belly obesity, paralysis, cancer of prostate, cancer of the breast, etc.

To summarise natural fast foods are good for the heart (low saturated fat and high complex carbs) and unnatural fast foods (junk foods) being high in animal saturated fat, high glycemic index rich refined carbohydrates, salt and low in complex carbohydrates are not good for the heart.