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The Health Files

Whole grains, seafood, skinless white-meat chicken, spinach, and Brazil nuts are good sources of vitamins.

Whole grains, seafood, skinless white-meat chicken, spinach, and Brazil nuts are good sources of vitamins.  

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Get your vitamins

Vitamin B-7 is essential for converting food into energy, and it plays a role in keeping your skin, nerves and digestive tract healthy. It may also reduce diabetic nerve pain. You can get your daily supply from HA-omega-3-rich salmon; avocados; nuts; dark chocolate; and 100 per cent whole grains. Vitamin K is essential for forming scabs and building bone. You need 120 mcg a day if you’re a guy; 90 mcg for gals. It’s also in big supply in broccoli and Swiss chard.

Pantothenic acid, pantethine or vitamin B-5 helps the body break down food into fuel and produce hormones and cholesterol. Mushroom, skinless poultry and avocados are good sources.

Selenium is a mineral that helps quell inflammation and helps you resist infection. Whole grains, seafood, skinless white-meat chicken, spinach, and Brazil nuts are good sources.

Cellphone hazards

A study recently tried to connect cellphone use with cancer. And while it failed to find a direct cause and effect, it did show that cellphones promote something called oxidative stress. Oxidative stress (think of it like rust) can stimulate the body to produce toxins that may lead to inflammation, and cellular and genetic damage.

When you’re on your cellphone, use a wired earpiece and keep the phone away from your head.

Keep your cell out of your pocket and away from your waist, whenever possible. Experts say radio frequency waves that cells emit are much less likely to be harmful if the device is kept within a half-inch of your body.

Stop checking texts, email and news every two minutes, and you’ll lower your stress level.

And don’t use your mobile devices in any way when you’re driving!

Time for bed

Irregular bedtimes disrupt body rhythms and undermine the brain’s ability to take in and retain information.

Three-year-olds seem most negatively affected. A study of 11,000 children found that kids at that age with poor sleep habits were the most disadvantaged intellectually in the first years of school. Erratic sleep patterns also trigger weight gain, difficulty controlling emotions and, suggest some doctors, the misdiagnosis of ADHD.

So if your toddler or preschooler isn’t following a regular sleep schedule, here’s what you can do:

Let your child get lots of physical exercise daily. It’s vital for mental and physical health, plus it promotes sleep.

Turn off the TV and all handheld devices at least two hours before bedtime, and keep all such devices out of your child’s sleeping area.

Set a “heading to sleep” routine: Take a bath; put on PJs; read books; then lights out.

Encourage your child to sleep in his/her own bed; it also promotes good sleep patterns.

Cancer prehab

Depending on the type and stage of cancer, a new study reveals that physical and psychological therapy before surgery, chemotherapy or radiation reduces hospital time and complications, and improves physical and emotional outcomes.

For most types of cancer, you don’t want to put off treatment any longer than you have to. But whether you have breast or lung cancer, there’s often a period of time between when you’re diagnosed and when you’re able to begin treatment. It’s during this window that research shows prehab has its benefits.

So if you or a loved one is headed for cancer treatment, ask your doctor about arranging for an appropriate physical therapy regimen and find out to whom you might go for psychological counselling.

©King Features Syndicate

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Printable version | Jan 18, 2020 2:12:41 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/magazine/the-health-files/article6228252.ece

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