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Thursday, 29 December 2011

Medicinal Benefits of Tulsi




Ocimum sanctum (Holy basil), called Tulsi in India, is ubiquitous in Hindu tradition. Perhaps its role as a healing herb was instrumental in its "sacred" implication.

Ocimum sanctum(Tulsi) is perhaps the most common and most revered of all household plants in India.

        Tulsi is an erect sweet -scented pubescent herb, 30-100cm in height , growing in abundance near cultivated field gardens and waste lands. Its leaves, seeds ands whole plant is useful.

Varieties of Tulsi 

  • Krishna Tulsi (Ocimum sanctum)
  • Rama Tulsi (Ocimum sanctum), 
  • Vana Tulsi (Ocimum gratissimum)


 Chemical Constituents - A variety of biologically active compounds have been isolated from the leaves including ursolic acid, apigenin and luteolin.

Tulsi medicinal properties / Uses:


    • Pharmacological Effects – In traditional Ayurvedic system of medicine, several medicinal properties have been attributed to this plant.
    Recent pharmacological studies have established the anabolic, hypoglycemic , smooth muscle relaxant, cardiac depressant,antifertility,adaptogenic and immunomodulator properties of this plant.
  • Antimicrobial effects – Essential oil of Tulsi have antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral properties. It inhibites the growth of E coli, B.anthracis, M.tuberculosis etc. It's antitubercular activity is one-tenth the potency of streptomycin and one-fourth that of isoniazid.
            Preperations containing Tulsi extract significantly shorten the course of illness, clinical symptoms and the biochemical parameters in patients with viral hepatitis and viral encephalitis.
      • Antiallergic and Immunomodulator effects - Essential oil of Tulsi was found to have anti-allergic properties. When administered to laboratory animals, the compound was found to inhibit mast cell degranulation and histamine release in the presence of allergen. These studies reveal the potential role of Ocimum sanctum extracts in the management of immunological disorders including allergies and asthma.
    • Antistress/Adaptogenic effects - Extracts from the plant have been found to reduce stress.
    • Antifertility effect – One of the major constituents of the leaves, ursolic acid has been reported to possess antifertility activity in rats and mice. This effect has been attributed to it's antiestrogenic effect which may be responsible for arrest of spermatogenesis in males and inhibitory effecton implantation of ovum in females. This constituent may prove to be a promising antifertility agent devoid of side effects.
    • Anti diabetic effect - A randomized, placebo-controlled cross-over single blind trial on 40 human volunteers suffering from Type II diabetes was performed. During the four week trial, subjects alternately received a daily dose of 2.5 g of Tulsi leaves powder or a placebo for two week periods. The results showed 17.6 % reduction in fasting blood glucose and 7.3% decline in postprandial blood glucose on treatment with Tulsi as compared to the blood glucose levels during treatment with placebo
    • For Heart ailments - As 'Tulsi' (basil) has a positive effect over blood pressure and also a de-toxicant, its regular use prevents heart attacks. A tonic may be prepared by mixing 1 gm of dry 'Tulsi' leaves with a spoonful of butter and some candy sugar or honey.Take twice a day; first thing in the morning and before going to bed at night. The drinking of Tulsi-leaf tea keeps the blood pressure even

      • Other effects - The leaves in the form of a paste are used in parasitical diseases of the skin and also applied to the finger and toe nails during fever when the limbs are cold. The juice of the leaves is given in catarrh and bronchitis in children. The plant is said to have carminative, diaphoretic and stimulant properties. A decoction of the plant is used for cough and also as mouth wash for relieving tooth ache. It is good for headache, convulsions, cramps, fevers and cholera.

      • The drinking of Tulsi tea keeps one free from cough and colds and other ailments associated with 'Kapha' dosha in the body. This Tulsi tea is an instant pick-me-up (energy drink).

Benefits of the Tulsi (Ocimum Sanctum)



  • In traditional Indian medicine system called Ayurveda, Tulsi (Holy Basil) is considered as a tonic to retain youth and avoid aging. Vitamin C, Vitamin A, Phytonutrients and the essential oils in Tulsi, are excellent anti oxidants and protects the body from nearly all the damages caused by the free radicals.
  • . Tulsi reduces blood glucose levels. Thus it is useful for diabetics. Tulsi contains vitamin C and other anti oxidants (such as Eugenol), which protect the heart from harmful effects of free radicals.
  • . Tulsi reduces total cholesterol levels. Thus it is useful for heart disease patients.Tulsi also reduces blood pressure.
  • . Tulsi helps in building up stamina , use it to prepare herbal tea.
  • . Tulsi is useful in the treatment of respiratory system disorders. A decoction of the leaves, with honey and ginger is an effective remedy for bronchitis, asthma, influenza, cough and cold. A decoction of the leaves, cloves and common salt also gives immediate relief in case of influenza. They should be boiled in half a liter of water till only half the water is left and add then taken.Tulsi is an important constituent of many Ayurvedic cough syrups and expectorants. It helps to mobilize mucus in bronchitis and asthma. Chewing tulsi leaves relieves cold and flu.
  • . Tulsi is used as mouth wash for reducing tooth ache.Its leaves, dried in the sun and powdered, can be used for brushing teeth. It can also be mixed with mustered oil to make a paste and used as toothpaste. This is very good for maintaining dental health, counteracting bad breath and for massaging the gums. It is also useful in pyorrhea and other teeth disorders.
  • . Tulsi is an excellent mouth freshener and oral disinfectant and its freshness lasts very long in the mouth. Holy Basil destroys more than 99 percent of the germs and bacteria in the mouth and this effect lasts long. It also cures ulcer in the mouth. It is also known to help inhibit growth of oral cancer caused by chewing tobacco etc.
  • Tulsi (Holy Basil) is an excellent anti biotic, germicidal, fungicidal and disinfectant and very efficiently protects our body from nearly all sorts of bacterial, viral and fungal infections. Fever is mainly caused due to infections from protozoa (in case of malaria), bacteria (typhoid), viruses (flu) and even allergic substances and fungus. Actually, fever is not an ailment in itself. It is just a symptom which shows that our body is fighting against infections. The tremendous disinfectant, germicidal and fungicidal properties of Tulsi destroys all these pathogens discussed above and heals fever. It is an old practice in India to have decoction of Tulsi leaves and flowers in cases of fever
  • . Tulsi leaves are regarded as an 'adaptogen' or anti-stress agent. Recent studies have shown that the leaves afford significant protection against stress. Even healthy persons can chew 12 leaves of basil, twice a day, to prevent stress.It also has immuno-modulatory properties.
  • . Many herbal cosmetics contain tulsi. Tulsi purifies blood. Applied locally, Tulsi juice is beneficial in the treatment of ringworm and other skin diseases and hence used in skin ointments. Tulsi leaves or oil extracted from it on the body keeps mosquitoes and other insects away.
  • . Insect Bites: The herb is a prophylactic or preventive and curative for insect stings or bites. A teaspoonful of the juice of the leaves is taken and is repeated after a few hours. Fresh juice must also be applied to the affected parts. A paste of fresh roots is also effective in case of bites of insects and leeches.Tulsi acts as insect repellant. So it is used to store grains also.
  • . Tulsi is useful in Eye Care & Headache. You can be free from conjunctivitis, boils and many other problems of eyes (which are caused due to viral, bacterial or fungal infection) by washing your eyes with water where few leaves of Tulsi are soaked. It also soothes eyes and reduces stress. A regular consumption can protecteyes from all the damages done by the free radicals, such as cataract, macular degeneration, glaucoma, vision defects, opthalmia etc. due to the high anti oxidant properties of its essential oils, vitamin A, vitamin C, etc. Headaches caused due to migraine, sinus, cough and cold, high blood pressure, etc. can be effectively controlled by the use of Tulsi. Camphene, Eugenol, Cineol, Carvacrol and Methyl Chavicol have excellent analgesic, sedative, anti congestive and disinfectant properties.
  • . Recent research shows that tulsi does have analgesic ( pain killer) properties similar to COX 2 inhibitor drugs.
  • . Ursolic acid, a chemical in tulsi may have a role as antifertility ( contraceptive) agent in future.
  • . Tulsi, being detoxifier and mild diuretic in nature, can help reduce uric acid level (main culprit as far as kidney stones are concerned) concentration in the blood as well as helps cleaning of the kidneys through urination. Acetic acid (CH3COOH) and certain components in its essential oils also facilitate dissolution of the stone. It has painkiller effects and help bear the pain from kidney stones.
  • . Tulsi can protect from radiation poisoning and also heal up damages from it. It acts as a vaccine against pox if consumed regularly. It is anti carcinogenic and it found to be effective in healing nearly all types of cancer and tumors.

Monday, 19 December 2011

The Personality



Every person is having three type of personality; One > what he himself think to be. Two > what other people think about him and Third > what he really is. Now if he is having a very high estimation of self: he will have a super ego and will turn to be a proudly and dictatorial person who care very less about others. Uncompassionate, resentful and some times selfish and thankless. They are having no gratitude to the society or even to the mankind. On the other hand, if the person is having low estimation of self he will turn to be "introvert”, mostly confined to himself and some tomes get detached from the society. They are having no friends or very less friends. These types of persons are always susceptible and prone to all sort of psychosomatic diseases and phobias. Almost every 6th person is having such type of features. Such type of people are highly sensitive, rather hypersensitive, imaginary, day-dreamers and as such high class scientists, seers, writers, artists, scholars, inventers and enjoy extrasensory powers. Such types of people are assets to any country or society. But they, being hypersensitive; are always susceptible to mental ailments and sanity. The best and safe personality is of those, who know what they really arte. Such types of persons are mostly very rigid and firm of their opinion. They may change the fate of ant Race/Country or even the whole of the mankind. Some of such gifted persons are; Chanakya, Aadi Shankaracharya, Swami Vivekanand, Osho Rajnish etc. So, know yourself and become of this kind.

Thursday, 24 November 2011

Diet Tips for Healthy Life


Eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables as part of an overall healthy diet may protect against certain cancers, such stomach and colon cancer. 

Only get calories from foods that you chew, not from drinks. For example, eat a fresh instead of drinking a fruit juice.

Consider fish. Most fish are lower in saturated fat than meat.

Just one super-sized fast-food meal of a sandwich, fries, and soda can have calories, fat, and added sugar than you need in an entire day. 

Always check out the healthier options at popular fast food restaurants.

Avoid weight-loss pills. Most weight-loss pills that you can buy without a prescription from your doctor or dietician have not been shown to work or be safe.

Drink at least 6 to 8 glasses of water, and limit 100% fruit juice, sugar-sweetened beverages, or diet beverages to 0-1 serving per day.

On long commutes or shopping trips, pack some fresh fruit, cut-up vegetables, and low-fat string cheese sticks to snack on.

Grill vegetable kabobs as part of a barbecue meal. Try tomatoes, mushrooms, green peppers, and onions.

In s restaurant, start your meal with a salad packed with veggies, to help control hunger and feel satisfied sooner.

For dessert, Try baked apples, pears, or a fruit salad.

Don't eat too much pasta, bread, or rice. Eat more vegetables instead.

Don't turn to food for comfort. When you feel stressed, go for walk, listen to your favorite music, or call a friend.

Popcorn, a whole grain, can be a healthy snack with little or no added salt and butter

Brush your teeth right after dinner so you can be reminded not to eat after that.

Most vegetables are naturally low in fat and calories. None have cholesterol.

Don't eat just because you are bored. Eat only when you are hungry.

Brown rice is more nutritious than white rice as it's loaded with antioxidants, thiamine, niacin, potassium, vitamin E and fiber. 

Resist the temptation of eating at fast food restaurant. But if you have to, resist the temptation of super-sizing your meal.

Your plate should be half vegetables or fruits at every meal.

If you have to eat dessert when eating out, just order one and share with another person.

Friday, 11 November 2011

Why Drink Coconut Water?



CocoWater is naturally:
  • Low in Carbs
  • 99% Fat Free
  • Low in sugars
Coconut Water contains organic compounds possessing healthy growth promoting properties that have been known to help -
  • Keep the body cool and at the proper temperature.
  • Orally re-hydrate your body, it is an all natural isotonic beverage.
  • Carry nutrients and oxygen to cells.
  • Naturally replenish your body's fluids after exercising.
  • Raise your metabolism.
  • Promote weight loss.
  • Boost your immune system.
  • Detoxify and fight viruses.
  • Cleanse your digestive tract.
  • Control diabetes.
  • Aid your body in fighting viruses that cause the flu, herpes, and AIDS.
  • Balance your PH and reduce risk of cancer.
  • Treat kidney and urethral stones.
  • Boost poor circulation.
Coconut Water -
The English name coconut, first mentioned in English print in 1555, comes from Spanish and Portugese word coco, which means "monkey face." Spanish and Portugese explorers found a resemblance to a monkey's face in the three round indented markings or "eyes" found at the base of the coconut. On the Nicobar Islands of the Indian Ocean, whole coconuts were used as currency for the purchase of goods until the early part of the twentieth century.

Coconuts are the fruit of the coconut palm, botanically known as cocos nucifera, with nucifera meaning "nut-bearing. " The fruit-bearing palms are native to
Malaysia, Polynesia and southern Asia, and are now also prolific in South America, India , the Pacific Islands , Hawaii and Florida. The light, fibrous husk allowed it to easily drift on the oceans to other areas to propagate. In Sanskrit, the coconut palm is known as kalpa vriksha, meaning "tree which gives all that is necessary for living," since nearly all parts of the tree can be used in some m anner or another. The coconut itself has many food uses, including milk, meat, sugar and oil as well as functioning as its own dish and cup. The husk was also burned for fuel by natives, but today a seed fibre called coir is taken from the husk and used to make brushes, mats, fishnets, and rope. A very potent fermented toddy or drink is also made from the coconut palm's sap. Coconut oil, a saturated fat made from dried coconut meat, is used for commercial frying and in candies and margarines, as well as in non-edible products such as soaps and cosmetics.

Although it takes up to a year for coconuts to mature, the trees bloom up to thirteen times a year, so fruit is constantly forming yielding a continuous harvest year-round. An average harvest from one tree runs about 60 coconuts, with some trees yielding three times that amount. The coconut's name is a bit of a misnomer, since it is botanically classified as a drupe and not a nut. It is the largest seed known.

If you've ever opened a fresh coconut, you will have seen the thin, opaque almost clear coconut juice or water which has a slight almond flavor. Contrary to popular belief, this is not the coconut milk. However, the water is consumed as a drink fresh from the coconut by many, and it can also be used in recipes.

Here are some more information about Coconut Water -

"It's a natural isotonic beverage, with the same level of electrolytic balance as we have in our blood. It's the fluid of life, so to speak." In fact, during the Pacific War of 1941-45, both sides in the conflict regularly used coconut water - siphoned directly from the nut - to give emergency plasma transfusions to wounded soldiers.

Most coconut water is still consumed fresh in tropical coastal areas - once exposed to air, the liquid rapidly loses most of its organoleptic and nutritional characteristics, and begins to ferment.
  • Coconut Water is More Nutritious than whole milk - Less fat and NO cholesterol.
  • Coconut Water is More Healthy than Orange Juice - Much lower calories.
  • Coconut Water is Better than processed baby milk - It contains lauric acid, which is present in human mother's milk.
  • Coconut water is naturally sterile - Water permeates though the filtering husk.
  • Coconut water is a universal donor - Its identical to human blood plasma.
  • Coconut Water is a Natural Isotonic Beverage - The same level we have in our blood.
  • Coconut water has saved lives in 3rd world countries thru Coconut IV.
"Coconut water is the very stuff of Nature, biologically Pure, full of Natural Sugars, Salts, and Vitamins to ward off fatigue and is the next wave of energy drinks BUT natural", according to Mortin Satin, Chielf of the United Nation's Food & Agriculture Organization.
Coconut water contains more potassium (at about 294 mg) than most sports drinks (117 mg) and most energy drinks.
  • Coconut water has less sodium (25mg) where sports drinks have around 41mg and energy drinks have about 200 mg.
  • Coconut water has 5mg of Natural Sugars where sports and energy drinks range from 10-25mg of Altered Sugars.
  • Coconut water is very high in Chloride at 118mg, compared to sports drinks at about 39mg.
    Data is based on a 100ml drink

Blood glucose control and diabetic management



ü               A low-GI food will release glucose more slowly and steadily. A high-GI food causes a more rapid rise in blood glucose levels and is suitable for energy recovery after endurance exercise or for a person experiencing hypoglycemia.

ü               It's also possible to lower the GI of a meal with a few teaspoons of vinegar and the addition of fresh fruits and vegetables

ü               Jamun Sirka is a vinegar produced from the Jamun (or rose apple) fruit in India. It is considered to be medicinally valuable for stomach, spleen and diabetic ailments.

ü                When you eat a low-G.I. food, such as oatmeal, it will break down more slowly and deliver the glucose into the bloodstream at a slower but steady rate.

ü           Although it is not recommended to use fructose as a sweetener, fruit should not be avoided because of its fructose content. Benefits may be obtained by consumption of dietary fibre in conjunction with carbohydrate; as Francis (1987) points out, evidence suggests that carbohydrate consumed with dietary fibre will have a less major impact on glycemic rise than the same amount of carbohydrate consumed alone.

ü          Prior to hypoglycemic agents, diabetics used vinegar teas to control their symptoms. Small amounts of vinegar (approximately 20 ml or two tablespoons of domestic vinegar) added to food, or taken along with a meal, have been shown by a number of medical trials to reduce the glycemic index of carbohydrate food for people with and without diabetes. This also has been expressed as lower glycemic index ratings in the region of 30%.

ü              The American Diabetes Association explains: "saturated fat raises blood cholesterol. High blood cholesterol is a risk factor for heart disease. People with diabetes have more frequent heart disease.

ü                Research has shown the Maitake mushroom (Grifola frondosa) has a hypoglycemic effect, and may be beneficial for the management of diabetes. The reason Maitake lowers blood sugar is because the mushroom naturally acts as an alpha glucosidase inhibitor. Other mushrooms like Reishi, Agaricus blazei, Agrocybe cylindracea and Cordyceps have been noted to lower blood sugar levels to a certain extent, although the mechanism is currently unknown.

ü              Exercise decreases insulin requirements as exercise increases glucose uptake by body cells whose glucose uptake is controlled by insulin, and vice versa

ü               Weight reduction and exercise improve tissue sensitivity to insulin and allow its proper use by target tissues.

ü                  Tooth decay and cavities are some of the first oral problems that individuals with diabetes are at risk for. Increased blood sugar levels translate into greater sugars and acids that attack the teeth and lead to gum diseases.

ü             Diabetic people tend to experience more severe periodontitis because diabetes lowers the ability to resist infection and also slows healing.

ü           To prevent further diabetic complications as well as serious oral problems, diabetic persons must keep their blood sugar levels under control and have a proper oral hygiene. A study in the Journal of Periodontology found that poorly controlled type 2 diabetic patients are more likely to develop periodontal disease than well-controlled diabetics are. At the same time, diabetic patients are recommended to have regular checkups with a dental care provider at least once in three to four months. Diabetics who receive good dental care and have good insulin control typically have a better chance at avoiding gum disease to help prevent tooth loss

ü                  HbA1c test
A useful test that has usually been done in a laboratory is the measurement of blood HbA1c levels. This is the ratio of glycosylated hemoglobin in relation to the total hemoglobin. Persistent raised plasma glucose levels cause the proportion of these molecules to go up. This is a test that measures the average amount of diabetic control over a period originally thought to be about 3 months (the average red blood cell lifetime), but more recently thought to be more strongly weighted to the most recent 2 to 4 weeks. In the non-diabetic, the HbA1C level ranges from 4.0-6.0%; patients with diabetes mellitus who manage to keep their HbA1C level below 6.5% are considered to have good glycemic control. The HbA1c test is not appropriate if there has been changes to diet or treatment within shorter time periods than 6 weeks or there is disturbance of red cell aging (e.g. recent bleeding or hemolytic anemia) or a hemoglobinopathy (e.g. sickle cell disease). In such cases the alternative Fructosamine test is used to indicate average control in the preceding 2 to 3 weeks.

ü                  Other non-invasive methods like radio waves, ultrasound and energy waves are also being tested for checking blood sugars

ü              Small, portable insulin infusion pumps are available from several manufacturers. They allow a continuous infusion of small amounts of insulin to be delivered through the skin around the clock, plus the ability to give bolus doses when a person eats or has elevated blood glucose levels. This is very similar to how the pancreas works, but these pumps lack a continuous "feed-back" mechanism. Thus, the user is still at risk of giving too much or too little insulin unless blood glucose measurements are made.

ü                 There are several insulin application mechanisms under experimental development as of 2004, including a capsule that passes to the liver and delivers insulin into the bloodstream.

ü       There are indications that intensive efforts to normalize blood glucose levels may worsen cardiovascular and cause diabetic mortality

ü          Recently it has been suggested that a type of gastric bypass surgery may normalize blood glucose levels in 80-100% of severely obese patients with diabetes.

Wednesday, 22 June 2011

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Wednesday, 4 May 2011

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Thursday, 28 April 2011

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Wednesday, 27 April 2011

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Thursday, 21 April 2011

Meditation Changes Pain Signal Processing Patterns



A new study reveals one of the mechanisms through which meditation acts as a painkiller, or as a way of reducing the intensity with which people perceive pain. The work shows that pain processing patterns are modified even after brief sessions of meditation.


Test subjects who were analyzed during the new experiments showed that after only four days of meditation sessions, the human brain becomes capable of altering its own response to pain.

All that participants had to do is practice a mindful awareness of their bodies and consciousnesses, the team behind the research says. They made a presentation of the study at the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience, which was held in San Diegoon November 16.
One of the thing that puzzled the scientists about practitioners' brain was that measurements revealed lower levels of activity in regions of the cortex that are regularly involved in relaying sensory information.

Additionally, the brain regions that control the painful part of the body are less activated as well. What goes into overdrive are the areas that are involved in modulating pain. As such, test subjects told scientists that they experience less intense pain, and that the feeling was not all that unpleasant.

The new conclusions add to previous studies, which revealed that practicing meditation can reduce anxiety levels, make people more relaxed and that it also aids in regulating individual emotions. As far as pain goes, meditation simply makes the feeling less distressing.

“It's really all about the context of the situation, of the environment. Meditation seems to have an overarching sense of attenuating that type of response,” says scientist Fadel Zeidan, quoted by LiveScience.

The expert holds an appointment as a post-doctoral researcher at the Wake Forest University School of Medicine, and is also the author of a new paper detailing the findings, which was presented at the conference.

During the experiments, participants were asked to practice what is known as mindfulness meditation. This means that they simply sat down comfortably, thought about the present, and cleared their minds, all while breathing at a steady rhythm.

“The preliminary results are very interesting and promising. You don't necessarily need to be a monk to experience some of the benefits related to meditation,” Zeidan explains.

In another study the researcher and his group conducted, published in the March issue of the esteemed Journal of Pain, Zeidan reported that as little as 30 minutes of meditation per day for three days can lead to a significant reduction in the pain response of test subjects.

The correlation held even if the participants weren't actually meditating, but rather just sat there quietly, relaxing.

Meditation Changes The Structure of The Brain



Engaging in meditation even for brief periods each day has visible effects on the human brain, say the conclusions of a new scientific study. It would appear that the practice triggers a reorganization of cortical areas related to sense of self, stress, empathy and memory, among many others.

The correlation was found to be valid even for people with no prior experiences of this nature, who took part in a brief mindfulness meditation program. The work was conducted by experts at the Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH).

They say that brain-imaging techniques revealed that change after only eight weeks of practicing the meditation methods, which is a very short time indeed. Details of the study will appear in an upcoming issue of the scientific journal Psychiatry Research: Neuroimaging.
What makes this research special is the fact that it demonstrated for the first time that meditation can produce changes in the structure of gray matter in the human brain. These are the first scientific, verifiable evidence to attest to the fact that the change is real.

“Although the practice of meditation is associated with a sense of peacefulness and physical relaxation, practitioners have long claimed that meditation also provides cognitive and psychological benefits that persist throughout the day,” explains researcher Sara Lazar, PhD.

“This study demonstrates that changes in brain structure may underlie some of these reported improvements and that people are not just feeling better because they are spending time relaxing,” adds the expert, who was the senior author of the new study.

In past studies the researcher and her team conducted, it was demonstrated that the brains of experienced meditation practitioners were considerably different from those of individuals who did not practice meditation.

Cortical areas associated with attention and emotional integration were a lot thicker in the practitioners, the team reported at the time. However, in the other studies, it was impossible to determine a causal link between meditation and the boost in cortical thickness.

The new study, which was based on using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) on the brain of test subjects, does exactly that. The research was carried out at the University of Massachusetts Center for Mindfulness.

“It is fascinating to see the brain’s plasticity and that, by practicing meditation, we can play an active role in changing the brain and can increase our well-being and quality of life,” adds Britta Hölzel, PhD.

“Other studies in different patient populations have shown that meditation can make significant improvements in a variety of symptoms, and we are now investigating the underlying mechanisms in the brain that facilitate this change,” she says.

Hölzel, who is first author of the new paper, holds an appointment as a research fellow at MGH and also at the Giessen University, in Germany, PsychCentral reports.

Attention Can Be Improved by Taking Breaks


A new investigation suggests that people who listen to their inner instincts telling them to take a break from a strenuous activity every once in a while are much better at concentrating than their peers who choose to remain focused on the task at hand.


Most people experienced this situation at least once – when choosing to concentrate harder on a task rather than take a break, only to find themselves losing focus faster than before. In retrospect, listening to your inner self might have been the best way to go about finishing the task.

These discoveries – which seem like common-sense to a point – go against established theories on the nature of attention. They also demonstrate in an empirical manner that turning your attention from an activity just for a little bit can help you get better at focusing on it once the break is finished.
Scientists are conducting investigations into this issue because workers have often reported the same problem – their performance/efficiency at doing a task declines if they do the same thing over and over again. This happens primarily because they lose focus.

In scientific terms, this is called a vigilance decrement. The phenomenon occurs when attention resources begin to get depleted, explains the leader of the new study, 
Universityof Illinois psychology professor Dr. Alejandro Lleras.

“For 40 or 50 years, most papers published on the vigilance decrement treated attention as a limited resource that would get used up over time, and I believe that to be wrong,” the expert argues.

“You start performing poorly on a task because you’ve stopped paying attention to it. But you are always paying attention to something. Attention is not the problem,” he goes on to say.

According to Lleras, the human brain may be wired in this manner. Previous studies have demonstrated that, if exposed to the same sound, image, or feeling for a long time, the mind starts to ignore it.

“Constant stimulation is registered by our brains as unimportant, to the point that the brain erases it from our awareness,” Lleras explains, quoted by PsychCentral.

“So I thought, well, if there’s some kind of analogy about the ways the brain fundamentally processes information, things that are true for sensations ought to be true for thoughts,” he adds.

“If sustained attention to a sensation makes that sensation vanish from our awareness, sustained attention to a thought should also lead to that thought’s disappearance from our mind!” the expert says.

The main conclusion of the new investigation is really quite simple – deactivating and reactivating your objectives helps the mind perceive them as new every time you return to work. This in turn prevents the brain from considering the stimuli a background “noise” and ignoring it.

“From a practical standpoint, our research suggests that, when faced with long tasks, it is best to impose brief breaks on yourself. Brief mental breaks will actually help you stay focused on your task!” Lleras concludes.

Monday, 18 April 2011

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Herbal Uses of Tomato




There are many tomato lovers all over the world and they would be more than happy to know the importance of tomato. The number of qualities tomato possesses is impeccable making it one of the finest fighting machines for cancer. Ketchup is one of the favorite thing kids like to have. If not anything the children would easily lick all the ketchup from the plate. It is one of the best ways to provide the needed anti-oxidants, though having it in excess may not be good for you. These anti-oxidants remove the free radicals which are implicated in causing diseases like cancer.
Other than preventing cancer it also prevents heart attack due to abundance of vitamin C and E. Tomato also contains lycopene – a fabulous anti-oxidant, which prevents bad cholesterol in the blood. This anti-oxidant gives tremendous boost in the fight for cancer. Lycopene happens to prevent cancer of the mouth pharynx, esophagus, stomach, colon and rectum. It also reduces risk of prostrate and cervical cancer.


The presence of vitamin C in tomatoes helps it to fight diseases like asthma. It is a useful anti-oxidant which prevents asthma and curbs its development which causes further problems. Children suffering from asthma and problems like constant wheezing can find relief if they have rich vitamin C diet. Vitamin C deficiency causes easy bruising as well as a disease called scurvy. By having fruits and vegetables which are rich in vitamin C can cure many of your health problems.


Herbal Uses of Tomato


Tomato is known to treat the skin disease known as eczema. By drinking tomato juice everyday you can see the difference.


If you want to loose weight, have a raw tomato early morning. It would help to remove those extra pounds you been carrying around.


Having raw tomatoes can provide relief from mouth ulcers. Gargling tomato juice 3 to 4 times a day would also help.


If you love having a farm but are not sure how to kill those worms here is an easy solution. Use 10 -15 tomato leaves for 1 liter water. Immerse these leaves in the required water for 24 hours. Strain it and use the water as an insecticide especially for cabbage worms.


To remove dark circles under your eyes make a paste by using 1 tsp tomato juice, 1/2 tsp lemon juice, a pinch of turmeric powder and a pinch of gram flour. Apply this paste under your eyes and keep it for 10 minutes. You will notice the difference with regular use.



Precaution : Never used this tips without concern with any medical expert.

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