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Dr K K Aggarwal

Winter smoking may be dangerous

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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Winter smoking can precipitate heart attack, paralysis and acute rise in blood pressure.

Smoking in winter can also increase the risk of erectile dysfunction in men. Men who smoke 20 cigarettes a day are 40% more likely to struggle with erectile dysfunction than men who do not smoke. Nicotine present in smoke can constrict the blood supply to the male organ.

As per a study published in the journal Tobacco Control, in men aged 16-59, the risk of erectile dysfunction was almost double in smokers than in non-smokers.

In winter, blood pressure and diabetes may also be uncontrolled adding to the problem of erectile dysfunction.

Obese people and people who consume more alcohol are more at risk.

Depression is also common in winter adding to the agony.

White rice most dangerous

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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White rice is much more dangerous in terms of glycemic index than white bread. It has glycemic index of 102.

We often tell people not to take cola drinks but they eat white bread. The glycemic index for white bread is 100% and that for cola drink is 90%. Traditional Indian drinks like Rooh Afza, Khas Khas may also contain more than 10% sugar.

The recommended sugary drink does not contain more than 2-3% sugar, which is the amount present in oral rehydration solution. People leave a cola drink and take mashed potato, which has glycemic index more than that of a cola drink (102 versus 90).

Pizza has a glycemic index of 86. Table sugar has a glycemic index of 84, while that of jam is 95. French fries have a glycemic index of 95.

Most people add sugar in food and snacks because sugar is a preservative. Less the sugar, earlier the food will be spoiled.

To avoid refined carbohydrates in diet, if one has to choose, then the most dangerous is white rice, followed by white bread and then comes white sugar.

Sodium in drugs can be dangerous

By Dr K K Aggarwal
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Using effervescent, dispersible or soluble drugs on a regular basis leads to greater risk for heart attacks, strokes, and other cardiovascular events.

Regular use of prescribed effervescent and other sodium–containing drugs have a 16% greater risk for nonfatal stroke, nonfatal myocardial infarction (MI), and vascular death (P<0.01), compared with regular users of low or no–sodium versions of the same drug as per Dr Jacob George, at the University of Dundee in Scotland who write in BMJ.

Taking the maximum daily dose of drugs like effervescent aspirin or acetaminophen may exceed the recommended daily limit of sodium. Effervescent paracetamol 500 mg can contain 18.6 mmol of sodium in each tablet.

Sodium–loaded effervescent, soluble or dispersible tablets should be avoided in patients at risk of hypertension.

Current U.S. guidelines recommend that people at low risk for CVD events limit their sodium intake to no more than 2,300 mg (1 teaspoon or 100 mmol/L) per day.

Certain populations, including people over 50, African Americans, diabetics, and people with high blood pressure or chronic kidney disease, should limit their daily sodium intake to 1,500 mg.

American Heart Association recommends intake of less than 1,500 mg of sodium a day for everyone. World Health Organization (WHO) recommendations call for limiting daily sodium intake to no more than 2,000 mg per day.

Loose talks can be dangerous

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Once an old man spread rumors that his neighbour was a thief. As a result, the young man was arrested and only months later he was proved innocent. After being released he sued the old man for wrongly accusing him.

In the court, the old man argued that they were just comments and were not intended to harm anyone.

The judge told the old man: “Write all the things you said about him on a piece of paper. Tear the paper on the way home, throw the pieces of paper out. Come tomorrow.”

Next day, the judge asked the old man to go out and gather all the pieces of paper that he had thrown yesterday.

The old man said: “I can’t do that! The wind spread them and I won’t know where to find them.”

The judge then gave a verdict against him and said “The same way your simple loose comments may spread like a wind and destroy the honor of a man. If you can’t speak well of someone better not to say anything”

Hostility and cynical behavior can harm a person. Also if we criticize others its we who end up with loosing respect in the society. If we are wrong we loose our credibility and talked about as liars.

Before speaking anything ask yourself three questions and if answer to any one is no, do not speak

1.  Is it necessary

2.  Is it the truth

3.  Is it kind

A Second Attack Of Dengue Is More Dangerous

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If you have suffered from dengue last year, you need to be more careful as the second attack of dengue may be more dangerous than the first attack.

There are four different types of dengue and one can, therefore, suffer with dengue four times in his or her lifetime. The second or subsequent dengue infections tend to be more serious.

A person with dengue can also simultaneously suffer from malaria. Malaria and dengue together can lower platelet counts to a dangerous level leading to complications.

In a dengue season, nobody should take aspirin for fever as it can precipitate bleeding, he added.

In dengue most complications occur within two days of the fever subsiding and most people are casual during this period. Any type of abdominal pain, giddiness or weakness after the fever has subsided should be attended to, by a doctor. Dengue complications during this period are due to shift of blood volume and patient requires rapid infusion of oral or intravenous fluids in large quantity.

Platelet transfusion is not required even if the count is as low as 10000 unless there is an associated bleeding.

Do Not Use 2 Pin Electrical Appliances: They Can Be Dangerous

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It’s the rainy season now and with the continuing use of electrical equipments, deaths due to electrocution are quite common. About 3 to 5 persons die due to electric shock everyday in any major city during the monsoon season. Most deaths due to electric shock could be attributed to lack of awareness regarding the basic principles of electrical systems and carelessness while handling electrical equipment.

The public not only needs to be aware of the safety principles but they also should know also the inherent dangers of handling electrical equipment, along with preventive measures to reduce mishaps and methods to revive a person who has suffered an electric shock. Like fire, electricity is a good servant but a bad master. If used properly it is a boon in every day’s life and if manhandled can cause death. The most important education required is regarding the proper use of earthing. Earthing is a thick wire attached to the top hole of a 3–pin electrical socket. Earthing leads are, by international convention, kept green so that there should be no difficulty in identifying it and pointing it out.

People need to be familiarized with the colors used on the insulation; green is for earthing, black for neutral and red for live wire. Normal electricity is generated when the live wire is connected to the neutral wire. Earth wire is a safety mechanism to remove leakage of the electrical current. Connecting live with earth wire will also give the electrical current but not when the earth wire is connected to the neutral wire.

Earthing is a safety outlet, which allows leaking electricity to be conducted away harmlessly and not through the body. It should be checked every 6 months because it deteriorates with time and weather, particularly during the rainy season. A check can be carried out using an ordinary tester on the body of the appliance.

A tester or a test lamp can easily check that earthing is proper. One can light a bulb with live and earth wire. If the bulb fails to light while connecting live and earth socket, this indicates a defective earthing. People tend to take earthing lightly and often misuse it.

Live and earth wires are sometimes untied together for temporary connection, which can be dangerous to life.

Following are some Dos and Don’ts which people should take note of to prevent electrical hazards:

• Make sure that you have proper earthing connection in the house.
• Always remember the green wire. Do not use any electrical appliances without it, especially if it is touching any water surface. Water enhances conductivity; extra precautions therefore should be taken, while handling appliances, under wet conditions.
•  2–pin plugs with no earthing arrangements should not be used and in fact should be banned.
• While using 3–pin plugs, make sure that all 3 wires are connected and the pins are not defective.
• Do not use matchsticks to hold wires in the socket.
• Do not touch any wire without ensuring that power supply is switched off.
•  Do not use the earth wire to replace the neutral wire.
•  All joint wires should be properly insulated with proper insulated tapes and not with sello tape or Band–Aids.
• Before using geyser water, it should be switched off.
•  Do not use heater plates with exposed wire for cooking purpose.
• Use dry rubber slippers at home.
• Use mini circuit breaker (MCB) and earth leak circuit breaker (ELCB) facilities at home.
• Metallic electrical appliance should not be kept near a water tap.
• Using rubber mats and desert coolers by using rubber leggings in the stand can insulate electrical appliance.
•  Use only recommended resistance wires and fuses.
•  Earthing should be checked every 6 months.
•  Any ordinary tester can check the presence of leaking electricity.
•  Wrap cloth around the handle of the refrigerator
•  Read the set of instructions attached with every electrical appliance.

Accidental electric deaths occur more often in India due to the use of 220 V as compared to those that occur in the US, where 110V is used. AC current is more dangerous than DC. An AC current of more than 10 MA causes tetanic muscular contractions making it impossible for a hand grasping an energized object, to free itself.

In case of electrocution, proper resuscitation is necessary. The mains should be switched off or wires disconnected using a wooden material and cardiopulmonary resuscitation should be started immediately. In a clinically dead patient, a thump in the center of the chest from a distance of one foot may alone revive a person.

In severe electrocution, clinical deaths occur within 4 to 5 min, therefore time to act is limited. Do not wait for the victim to be taken to the hospital. Act there and then.