Women are weaker of the two sexes-this feeling has been instilled among women since ages and ages by our forefathers and fathers. Society too treats a man with more respect than a woman as he is proudly called the ‘head of the family’. But now, women are breaking all barriers and setting their successful footsteps onto all domains-we have the first Indian woman pilot, Ms. Avani Chaturvedi flying the fighter jet to Dr. Soumya Swaminathan who is the deputy director general of the World Health Organization (WHO), the highest post held by an India in the WHO.
All these bring about a new question-who really is the weaker sex? Science and logic are fervently working together to produce a clearer picture on a woman’s physical fitness levels on all fields, especially in ones that require greater physical stamina as in athletic training. A new study suggests that when it comes to getting fitter and maintaining it, women have an aerobic edge over men. Though a small study, it compared the oxygen uptake of 18 young men and women while they worked out on a treadmill. An important criterion that determines aerobic fitness is oxygen uptake. Results proved that women consistently processed oxygen about 30% faster than men which is contradicting the common belief that men have a stronger and more naturally athletic body. One researcher involved in the small study exclaimed that a woman’s muscles extract oxygen from the blood faster and this indicates a much more powerful aerobic system. One point to note is that, all participants in the study were around the same age, fitness level, weight and highly active people.
While men may have higher fitness peaks than women, the study clearly shows that women show clearly more aerobic fitness ability than men at the same level. The reason for this faster oxygen uptake is not clear, but one thing is-the way we differentiate women and the way in which we approach assessment and training might all change forever in a few years’ time.
Be it a man or a woman, the ability to perform, to process and prove results matter more than anything- be it the person’s sex, caste, creed, height or weight! If you are a sports person or someone looking to enhance your athletic performance with a healthy diet plan and physical activity, you can get in touch with acclaimed registered dietitian nutritionists at www.firsteatright.com.
People go crazy over workouts and physical fitness at one stage in their life and during this period, they give their 100% to physical activity exerting themselves beyond their maximum limit. Most health clubs these days offer discounted rates or festive bonanza offers in their membership prices and include dynamic exercises such as whole-body workouts, CrossFit, high-intensity interval training, functional training, etc.
Trainers are pumped up with energy and they pass over such high spiritedness to their clients. They push you to a whole new level of exercising and motivate you all through the schedule. These high-intensity workouts benefit some clients but affect many of them causing a life-threatening disease called rhabdo.
Rhabdomyolysis is the breakdown of muscle tissue whose contents enter the bloodstream rapidly. Myoglobin is released when muscle cells burst and too much of this protein results in kidney damage. Myoglobin is a local oxygen reservoir that serves to supply oxygen during periods of high-intensity muscular activity.
What Causes Rhabdo?
High-intensity workout/training is one of the many causes of rhabdo. Other critical ones include:
Major symptoms of rhabdo include dark or red-colored urine, overall body weakness, muscle tenderness, weakness of affected muscle, decreased urine output and muscle stiffening or aching. Other symptoms include fatigue, joint pain, seizures and weight gain.
Diagnosis & Treatment
The aching muscles are thoroughly checked for tenderness alongside a urine and blood test to confirm rhabdomyolysis. The doctor might check for normal levels of the following elements that are required for muscle and kidney health:
Exercising is fun, entertaining and enjoyable when you focus on it considering your body cues. Some trainers love to show fast-paced results and keep drilling you to the point of exhaustion. A good trainer is one who gets to know your body well in due course and adjusts exercise routines to match your fitness level. He/she slowly and consistently introduces new exercises and challenges to your body until you start functioning better and faster.
Soybeans are the classic version of a vegetarian meat substitutes. Affordable even to the poorest of mankind, these protein-packed foods are widely used for their minimal calorie content and maximum protein punch. This special food finds itself entangled between conflicting study results and statements that appreciate or condemn its effects on human health. Hailed by some for controlling hot flashes, osteoporosis and cancers such as breast and prostate, the same food is hated by many for fear of breast cancer risk, dementia and thyroid problems.
Science proclaims soy as one of the healthiest foods available in abundance to every man living in this world, but conflicting research prevents mankind from advertising it to the world. Containing abundant quantities of isoflavones, it is this element that brings about varying results on our very own soybean. Isoflavones are estrogen-like compounds found in plants that have a weaker effect comparatively. Estrogen is likelier to promote the growth and development of breast cancer. Consuming isoflavone-rich soy foods is feared to worsen the chances of breast cancer greatly. Contrarily, there have been few other studies indicating positive effects of soy intake on inhibiting breast cancer risks. Read more about breast cancer, its signs, symptoms, diagnoses and the foods you can eat to remain at a reduced risk from the website www.firsteatright.com.
Studies that Don’t Conclude Yet Confuse
Eat Soy, Experience the Joy of Cancer-inhibition
Its more than 25 years since the conflict in information surrounding soy intake and breast cancer risk started appearing and we’ve not been able to come to any decisive conclusions until now. It all started on a positive note when soy-consuming countries showed decreased mortality rates which made researchers curious about isoflavones’ role as anti-chemo agents. That’s mainly because these elements contain both estrogen-dependent and estrogen-independent properties that give us clues that it might obstruct the occurrence of breast cancer.
Much research on soy started evolving as many women in Asian countries showed decreased risk of breast cancer compared to women in Western countries. Soybeans and soy products mainly contain two isoflavones called genistein and daidzein. Different research results prove genistein to prevent cancer of the breast, prostate, colon and skin while daidzein is also said to possess anticancer effects. Yet another study showed that women who consumed soy were 21% less-likelier to die over 9 ½ years compared to those women who ate the least. The same study also showed that there are no side effects such as increased cancer risk due to soy consumption. In fact, it only promotes various other health benefits such as decreased heart problems, diabetes and cardiovascular diseases along with the anti-cancer effect.
Research Show Soy Foods as Cancer-promoting Foods
Adding a small amount of soy foods to diet has the tendency to trigger cancer-inducing genes in the body, according to a study. The study involved 140 women who were diagnosed with stage 1 or 2 breast cancer between 2003 and 2007 and scheduled for a mastectomy or lumpectomy in 2-3 weeks. Within those three weeks these women were grouped into two where 70 of them consumed soy protein (52 grams daily) and another 70 consumed a placebo that looked like soy protein. On comparison of each woman’s breast tissue sample that was taken before and after surgery, results showed that genes that promoted cancer cell growth were turned on in women who consumed soy protein. Two studies in 2009 done by reputed study groups came to strikingly different conclusions. One study observed whether soy triggered the recurrence of the disease and concluded positively. Yet another study on Chinese breast cancer survivors most of whom underwent a mastectomy showed that those women who consumed a soy-rich diet were at a decreased risk of recurrence compared to those who ate a diet that contained little of soy.
All said and done, consumption of soy still remains a vital treatment source to minimize menopausal symptoms and avoid bone loss. There are study results that support consumption of soy from a younger age compared to inclusion of soy-rich foods from menopause. We need yet more conclusive research studies that either approve or disprove soy usage as an agent against breast cancer. Until then, there is no harm in eating moderate quantities of soy foods.
Sources of Soy
Feel free to consume one or two servings of soy foods such as tofu, tempeh, edamame and soy milk daily. You can substitute peanuts for soybeans, soymilk for cow’s milk while eating your breakfast cereal, use soy protein instead or red meat while preparing gravies, use miso dressing for your salad or relish yummy smoothies with soy milk.
Halloween is the most desired day for children as they right royally grab umpteen candies to eat, dress up as spookily as possible and the schools and neighborhoods are buzzing with activities. But as parents, are you ready for all the sugar laden treats that could last for months after the festival? Having a party together, going for a trick or treat or celebrating in your own unique way, there are multiple creative ways in which you can make Halloween healthier, desirable and enjoyable.
There are quite a number of safety measures that should be ensured before sending your child for his/her Halloween celebration.
Kids jump with excitement and are ready to do anything to look their best on Halloween. They don’t mind the flowing dresses, huge hats or mighty swords. But as parents, we need to make sure that the costume fits correctly without being too big or too small making it uneasy for the kid to move around easily. If you are making a mask, hat or a wig ensure that these props fit your child perfectly instead of blocking their vision.
What is Halloween without the scary or silly Jack-o’-lanterns? The custom is believed to have originated in Ireland where pumpkins were often carved with grotesque faces. Since then, the tradition of carving pumpkins and lighting them to ward off evil forces has been followed worldwide. Never give kids the responsibility of carving pumpkins with knives as there are many dangerous consequences attached to it. You can help them with permanent markers where the child can draw features over the pumpkin and make them spooky/silly according to their wish. Else, allow them to draw the features and help them with the carving process. Also, instead of lighting candles inside the carved pumpkin, you can use glow stickers. If you wish to use candles, place the pumpkin in places where there are minimal chances of tripping over and blow off the candles when you are not at home.
Halloween is the time of year where children are prone to car accidents twice as much compared to any other time of year. It is better to:
This is the most sought-after part during Halloween and children love to munch on candies as and when their bags fill up. But, it is always better to wait until you reach home before opening your candy bag. This way, you ensure that you eat only those that are fully wrapped and get to read the ingredients if your child has any food allergies. Never let children eat any edibles that seem to be made of unknown ingredients. Before you kid gets ready for the candies, it is always better to make him/her aware of the idea that not all candies need to be emptied then and there. Parents can take a few to their office and share it with their colleagues or even encourage their children to trade candies for other prizes such as their favorite toy or dress. This way, you ensure better health and less sugar intake.
There is no hard and fast rule attached with Halloween celebrations. It is the time of year to celebrate and promote togetherness in an amicable way. As parents you can always incorporate positive changes such as:
AVOID FRAUD. EAT SMART.
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Dietitian & Nutritionist Dr. Nafeesa Imteyaz.