Melatonin, commonly known as the sleep hormone is responsible for our cicardian rythm. But, it has some fascinating facts to be known.
1. The pineal gland, located at the base of the brain, is known to produce 5% of the total quantity of melatonin. Surprisingly, in all of the cells throughout the entire body, the mitochondria generate the remaining 95% of melatonin.
2. Our body cells’ mitochondria typically serve as the energy-generating organelles. They absorb glucose and oxygen to create water and ATP, which serve as the body’s power source. Free radicals are created during this procedure. However, the free radicals can be neutralised by our body’s defence systems. Melatonin acts as the potent anti-oxidant which causes free radical damage.
3. The melatonin which is produced in the body cells due to the sunlight, especially the infra red rays trigger the release of glutathione and other potent anti-oxidants. Melatonin also has anti -inflammatory properties and anti cancer properties too.
4. Since, melatonin is an effective anti-oxidant, it helps to prevent eye and ear damage. Research shows that it is effective in prevention of age related macular degeneration and retinopathy.
5. Melatonin protects the brain. Melatonin serves to promote the growth of new brain cells and improves memory, according to studies. Melatonin levels were discovered to be low in those with Alzeihmers disease. Thus, it is possible to prevent Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease from becoming severely disabling by increasing melatonin levels.
6. Research shows that melatonin stimulate growth hormone production. Evidences showed that oral administration of melatonin increased the level of growth hormone, two fold times.
7.Melatonin production declines noticeably as we get older. Therefore, in order to maintain melatonin levels in our everyday lives, we must get enough sun exposure during the day and turn off lights at night so that darkness can help to stimulate melatonin production.
8. Sub-cellular melatonin which is produced in the body naturally is more effective than taking melatonin pills. Melatonin pills do work on short term basis and should be taken only if clinically recommended.
9. Aside from the infrared radiation that comes from sunlight, which is typically present in the early morning, other sources of infrared radiation that contribute to a sufficient amount of melatonin production include candlelight and being in front of a fire.
10. Incadescent light bulbs, spending time in greenery parks, outdoors all help to boost melatonin production.
1. The human body in which each of us lives is made up of around 37 trillion cells, to be precise. And every day, about 1-2 percent of the cells are renewing. So, exactly after 90–100 days, a new “me” appears. We remain so busy with our routine lives that we hardly acknowledge this fact, and many of us are not even aware of it. So, ‘change’ is the constant tune, not just within the universe but also within us.
2. Now that we understand that our bodies undergo transformation on a daily basis, So, the question is: how does this self-renewal occur? Let’s go back to our past a little bit. The human body develops from the human embryo, which is fertilized by an oocyte and a sperm cell. This embryo is made up of stem cells. The stem cells are the basic cells (undifferenciated cells) of the human body, which, through the process of mutation and transformation grow into different cells like nerve cells, bone cells, muscle cells, blood cells and so on. Throughout our lifespan, these stem cells undergo cell division and keep replicating; that’s how self-renewal happens.
3. Under normal physiological self-renewal processes, different cells in the body have differing rates of cell division. So, the replication process of various tissues, organs, and blood cells in the body has a different time frame, like the skin epidermal cells, which can take around 10–30 days, whereas a bone cell takes 3 months, or a hair grows about 1 cm in one month, and so on.
4. Though our body is constantly changing due to the continuous self-renewal process through different cell cycles like shedding the old skin cells, renewal of intestinal cell lining, and growing hair or nails on a routine basis, this isn’t a simpler process. The human body is still very complicated and has exceptions. Some cells, such as those in the brain (cerebral cortex), eyes (such as lenses), and heart, do not change from birth to death.
5. But then, why is self-renewal important and must be maintained? Under normal physiological conditions, stem cells have two functions: proliferation and differentiation. Though stem cells have a natural proliferative capacity throughout our lives, disease conditions can affect their physiological self-renewal ability and behavior due to factors such as damage or an unhealthy lifestyle (obesity, lack of physical activity, smoking, or a poor diet).
6. A lack of an appropriate environment within the body or poor maintenance of the human body might eventually lead to the exhaustion of the capacity of stem cell proliferation, which causes premature aging or tissue atrophy. With aging, stem cell activity, tissue regenerative and haemeostasis is significantly declined.
7. Sometime, due to the unhealthy environment within the body, mutations lead to aggressive stem cell division without going through the natural cell differentiation process. This can lead to abnormal tissue growth or cancer in the body. Therefore, the physiological process of stem cell division and the natural stem cell behavior can be affected by four disease conditions, like degenerative, metabolic, cardiovascular, and inflammatory conditions.
8. Regenerative medicine and therapies have arisen as a result of the discovery that defective self-renewal mechanisms in the body are the root cause of malignancies and abnormal cell proliferation. Many disorders are being treated with regenerative medicines based on stem cells. Recent years have seen a significant increase in the use of stem cell treatment to treat a variety of diseases like cancer and disorders including type 1 diabetes, heart disease, stroke, Parkinson’s, burns, osteoarthritis, by regenerating cells, repairing tissues, and transplanting organs.
9. The fact about regenerative medicine is that, though it has helped many patients around the world, the cost of treatment is quite high as the procedure is complicated and the failure rate is high. Human stem cell treatment requires culturing human stem cells in a laboratory setting for a longer period of time, which is quite difficult.
10. The market is flooded with products that promote cell regeneration, anti-aging, and longevity. The lofty claims made by these items are still quite dubious. But it is true that some supplements do work to improve health, lower inflammation, and increase immunity. But in the end, having a healthy diet, getting enough sleep, a calm mind, and exercising regularly is all that’s necessary for good health.
Hello everyone! Greetings 🖖 This is my first post after a year long break…
True enough, life is indeed unpredictable. It gives you the most dreadful unexpectedness when you least expect it. That’s what happened to me. Today, when I look back and remember, I still get the goosebumps, the tremble and chill. The misery I went through, will most likely follow me all throughout my life, or for a very long time. The past year was the most challenging and overwhelming for me. In those days, I used to put down my thoughts and feelings to my husband throughout his absence during the difficult times.
When we were about to go to bed, on the evening of 8th January 2021, around10.30 PM, after dinner and are routine talk, you complained of a headache. I advised you to take a pain reliever, and go to bed. But to my astonishment, you behaved a little different when you were lying on the bed. You asked me to get the tablet and water for you. When I was back from the kitchen with the glass of water, you couldn’t get up from the bed to have the medicine.The water gushed out from your mouth because you were unable to swallow. Then, all of a sudden, I could understand that something was wrong with you. You began to slur your words. Being a doctor myself, I came to know that you were having a transient ischaemic attack or maybe a stroke. I, immediately called emergency service and requested for an ambulance. I fumbled while speaking as I was very nervous. In the interim, I also called our next-door neighbour Jan, a 72 year old retired dutchman who is quite friendly and is fluent in English. When the ambulance arrived, the paramedics examined you and noticed that your left side of the body was immobile. However you were still trying to communicate and was conscious. They hurried you to the emergency room of the nearest hospital in Eindhoven where we reside. Both, Jan and I accompanied you to the hospital. In the ER, I was not allowed inside. We were both waiting outside. At around 11 o’clock, I asked Jan to go back home as he was quite tired and had recently recovered from cancer.
A little later, I was told that they gave you a Morphin injection for your headache and a CT scan was done. Although I was completely shaken, somehow I was calm, still holding on to my gut that things would be all okay. Once the CT scan report came, they confirmed to me that it’s a right brain hemorrhage, which is quite huge and with some strange findings. I was told that they had planned to shift you to a hospital in Tilburg, which is a nearby city, about 45-minute drive from Eindhoven. On top of my shock and cold shivers, I was confused and petrified by this whole chain of events. I was informed that they don’t have the expertise, so that is why you have to be referred to the Tilburg Hospital, which has a better neurological service. Moreover, I was told that your CT scan findings were quite confusing and the bleeding was huge.
Within minutes, the ambulance came and rushed us to Tilburg. Inside the ambulance, you were lying down, still in your senses, tired and awake, complaining of the headache and discomfort. I was sitting next to you and asking you to rest and reassuring you. By almost 12.30 am, we reached Elizabeth Hospital, Tilburg. They rushed you again to the ER. I was allowed to accompany you there. The neurosurgeon on duty examined you and did a scan again. She, too, told me about the right brain hemorrhage and some strange discovery that resulted in the massive bleeding. All the while, I was very worried and heartbroken from inside. I could not hold my tears, cried and felt so helpless. At that moment, I felt that I would lose you and that I had lost everything in life.
Still awake and tired, you were transferred to a medium-care unit to be kept under observation. You asked the nurse if I could stay with you in the room. I know I won’t be allowed in, so I assure you that I will keep waiting outside. During those painful hours, I called your father, back home in India, to inform him about the whole episode. He was totally shocked. I could not hold my tears and was crying on the phone. Then, I called and informed our son too. He was confused and could not believe his ears. He was terrified as well, as he knew that his dad was the fittest one in the family and had never had any kind of illness. I have no idea what went through him at that stage, as he was all alone at home. Due to COVID, he was in our apartment and not in his college hostel. I also informed my sister and my brother-in-law. By that time, it was almost 1.30 AM. I was told to go back home as you were kept under supervision and it was quite stable.
So, while boarding a taxi from Tilburg to Eindhoven, I realised that the coming days were going to be the toughest to handle.That whole night, after reaching home, I cried and cried, just loitering around the house in anguish and pain. I had the impression that I was in for a long, dark journey with no idea what lay ahead.
The following day ,on the 9th of January was even scarier. I was informed earlier that you would be taken to the Operation Theatre for brain angiography. I was in the hospital, waiting to hear about the outcome of your brain angiography. Till 6 o’clock in the evening, there was no news concerning you. I kept enquiring the OT nurse about you. She informed me that you hadn’t been taken out of the OT. My mind was beginning to crawl with fears and anxieties. I was distraught and in panic. The OT nurse then called me at around 6:30 pm and took me to a room. I could sense the worst as I was sitting alone in the room. At that moment, I was terrified and utterly shaken.
Two doctors entered the room and sat in front of the table where I was sitting. One doctor started talking to me about the procedure they had to perform on you. They said that you had an atrioventricular fistula in your right brain which had to be repaired, otherwise the bleeding was profuse. The procedure went well, but you have not yet regained your consciousness from the anesthesia. They were very uncertain about the outcome and that you might have slipped into a coma. They told me that they were expecting the worst scenario, maybe brain death. My whole world was shattered at that moment. I was almost lost and could not stop myself from crying. I was in a complete state of shock. The doctors and staff did try to console me. Jan, our elderly friend, explained to me to take things practically and control my emotions. I called our son, your brother, and my family and informed them regarding your state. I was told to return home and was assured to be informed of any further developments regarding your state. When I got home, it felt like the longest night, the darkest and scariest night of my life. That whole night, I grasped onto my mobile, waiting for any news about you.
On January 10th, I came to the hospital and was informed that you had been shifted to the ICU. The doctors told me that they had to drain a huge bulk of fluid from your brain and that your vitals were stable. I was informed that your MRI scan showed a sub-arachnoid hemorrhage, which got worse due to a congenital defect of the AV fistula. Such cases are rare.The condition was worse as you had hydrocephalus, so the fluid had to be drained to reduce the pressure.
The first time I saw you in the ICU with a ventilator and machines, drains, and drips all over, it was really hard for me. I went near you and called your name. You did respond with a little movement of your right hand. I was relieved and was happy as I could see little hope of light after these 2-3 hard days. That day was quite positive for me as the doctors were happy with you for being responsive to the treatment and procedure. But then, they still reminded me about the uncertainty of your condition. There was still a huge amount of fluid left in your brain which had to be drained continuously. You were still in a comatose state, with a low score on the neurological scale. I was told to call our immediate family members from India as your chances of survival were low. I called our son, back in India, and asked him to pack his bag to come to the Netherlands. I also informed your family and mine regarding your present state. I called your employer and informed them because they had been trying to reach you for the last 2-3 days due to your professional obligations. I also informed my project coordinator and let go of the project that I was doing.
After going through all the procedures of an emergency visa, our son arrived on January 14th. This was a life-changing event for him as well, as he had been very close to you, his father. He did go through an emotional roller coaster during those turbulent days. And, seeing you in that state, he had acted very mature and calm. He has been my biggest support through this storm. Our neighbors and friends have also been very supportive through the difficult time. Your employer has been a great support system for me and our son. We will always remain grateful to everyone who has been there for us through those difficult hours.
You stayed in the ICU for almost 2 months. Everyday, I visited twice, once in the morning and then in the evening. During my time spent with you in the ICU, your eyes remained close most of the time, but you do respond to my touch with right-hand finger movements. Some days were good and positive, while some days were scary. Our son, too, visited you in the ICU. But, he had to leave as his exams were approaching. Your neurological state improved slowly and your vitals were stable. You had gotten out of the ventilator. They decided to shift you to the rehabilitation centre after you regained consciousness.
I was initially quite optimistic and excited about your development and recuperation during your time in the rehab facility. However, because the prognosis was poor, we, also had to deal with a number of setbacks in that situation. Your severe cognitive impairment and short – term memory problems were not responding well to therapy. Your left side is completely paralysed, and there is no recovery. You still struggle with a few cognitive issues. However, you continue to make good progress in terms of your awareness, speech, memory, and physical development every day. Your speech is clear and concise at present.
After more than a year, you are still residing in the rehabilitation facility, and your therapies are still ongoing. I see you almost every day of the week. While we converse and laugh on certain days, other days are sad when therapy doesn’t work out. As I’ve come to terms with your situation, I’ve begun to feel content. My greatest satisfaction comes from watching you smile while I am with you.The hardest lesson life has taught us today is to be cheerful in the moment we share together right now because we don’t know what the future has in store for us. When I see you now, hope is the only thing in which I will still believe and live.
Being one of them or maybe, we must have come across people who are overwhelmed with trivial things, or sensory subtleties like a crowded place, loud noises, a strong odour. Or people who get easily stressed out, quickly get hurt or being overly emotional. This happens because such people are born with a particular personality trait and a susceptible nervous system so considered as High Sensitive People.
6 points to understand a high sensitive person:
1. People born with this personality trait is not abnormal, nor this isn’t a disorder. They have this personality because their brain is wired differently. There are scientific reasons for this kind of behaviour. Anatomically, their brain has a prominent insula which is responsible for their heightened state of emotional and sensory sensitivities. Their brain is wired to have a lower threshold for emotional and sensory reactivity. Genetically, they are associated withthe 5HTLPR gene, which is related to mental issues like depression and anxiety. This personality trait is also known as sensory processing sensitivity (SPS).
2.High sensitive person does not necessarily are introverts. A few percentages of people with this trait can behave like an extrovert. Introverts are people who like or enjoy being alone. In contrast, HSP can have deep human connections and can be comfortable with a few set of people. They are sensitive to physical, mental, emotional and sensitive subtleties.
3.High sensitive People are deep thinkers, highly emotional and intense. They are sensitive to the external sensory sensitivities like a crowded place, parties, loud noises, strong smell or any physical sensations. Such personality is gifted with highly creative talents like art, painting, music, writing or in any such creative fields.
4.People with this trait can overthink easily. Overthinking can lead to repeating the same trail of thoughts, which can quickly turn to negative thinking. Repeating the same spiralling thought pattern can also lead to anxiety, depression and stress disorder.
5.High Sensitive peopleare not comfortable with multi-tasking or highly competitive environment. Too many tasks at a time can make them overwhelmed and stressful. So, choosing a profession or a job, which they can enjoy doing is quite crucial.
6.If you are born with this trait, self-acceptance is crucial. Self-criticism doesn’t hold any purpose. Though it is quite challenging to go through the everyday stress of life, living with emotional and sensory subtleties, but they have the capabilities to overcome them. They can thrive and become very successful too. Adjusting the environment according to their convenience and keeping a few trusted friends and family for emotional support is hugely beneficial. As far as physical and emotional strain is concerned, adopting a healthy lifestyle, enjoying a hobby, a daily exercise routine, sleep, mindfulness, meditation can help to lead a balanced life.
Hello everyone ! Have a wonderful and safe Sunday 🙋🏻
There is an old Spanish proverb “The belly rules the mind” which is indeed true. Food, not only has a significant impact on the physical body and overall health but also on our day to day thinking, decision making, and the entire mental health as well. This saying has been prevalent among various faiths and belief systems from the ancient time. Science has proved in recent times in various researched-based studies.
According to the widely practised Yogic and Ayurvedic literature, everything that is matter arises from a fundamental source called Prakriti (meaning Mother Nature). So, the three primary Gunas (qualities) arises from Mother Nature. The three primary Gunas which are present in all objects and beings surrounding us are – Tamas, Rajas and Sattva. We, human unlike other beings or objects can choose the level of the three qualities in our individual lives and minds depending upon our choices of food, lifestyle and the kind of thoughts we like to cultivate. Our wellbeing and health mainly depend on these preferences. The three states are relative, and keep changing during our day to day life depending on our food choices and lifestyle preferences. Therefore, the three states are:
Satva: It is a state of beingness, in balance, in harmony and a favourable condition. For these qualities to nurture, we need to adapt to the food, that comes directly from Mother Nature. The food that comes from the soil and not from factories. To maintain calmness of mind, we have to adopt and practise Yoga, meditation regularly, which keep the mind stable and peaceful. Such a state is an ideal state of health and wellbeing free from diseases.
Rajas:This is the state of mind related to desires, passion, longing and attachment to worldly pleasures, excessive material goods, excessive work, excessive exercising and even extreme thinking. When we have this state of mind, there is craving for fried, spicy food and stimulants like alcohol, smoking and all sorts of other stimulants.
Tamas:This state of mind is darkness, ignorance and passive. It is the most unproductive state of mind.Such a state mainly attracts overeating, oversleeping, passive state, fearful state. This state of mind mostly attracts fatty meat, processed and refined food.
So, the kind of food, we have on our plate, that we consume every day, or with each meal determines the state of mind, thought process, our prospects of the world, people around us. Therefore, in yogic practises, the ultimate goal is to cultivate the practice of Satva, adopt Satvic food to be close to our Creator, our beingness, our most authentic self.
Not just mentioned in ancient literature, food impact on both physical and mental health have been studied in several research-based projects all over the world in recent times. For decades, we have been surrounded by sugary, refined, processed and fatty foods, which are like impossible to avoid. Because of their easy accessibility, binging on this kind of foods has made it difficult for the body to deal with them. Apart from causing multiple physical health issues, including lifestyle diseases and obesity, they are grievous for our mental health and brain too. Researches have found out; junk foods are not only killing our health but also causes the shrinking of our brain. The primary functions of the brain being the cognitive functions, the ability to think, perform challenging tasks have found to impact the wrong kind of nutrition. Such a diet is found to have a long term effect on normal brain activities and memory. Habitual intake of such foods changes and alter the programming of the brain.
An Australian study found that not just in the adults and adolescence. Still, pregnant women, too who fed on junk foods, gave birth to children who were more aggressive, fearful, throw tantrums and has less tolerable personality. Without Omega 3 fatty acids, and other nutrients dense food, the brain does not develop naturally.Some more information on Omega three fatty acids https://healthhappinesshealing.org/wp-admin/post.php?post=3844&action=edit
So to conclude, the impact of nutrition in the overall health is wholesome. Not just the diseases but also chronic health issues like autoimmune diseases, obesity, heart diseases, rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, cancers, celiac disease, irritable bowel syndrome, thyroid issues can be controlled and well managed by changing the diet and lifestyle. Even the impact of nutrition on mental health has been immense. So, with proper diet and lifestyle changes, depression, mood disorders and day to day cognitive functions thought process, task performance, agility, tolerance, decision-making skills could all be improved.
Your body is not a single entity. It is a community of 50 trillion cells which behaves the way you think, feel and act. When you are in good emotional health, your healthy mental state influence every cell of your body to grow, function healthily and die in normal cyclical order. Again, new cells born and the cycle goes on. But, then this is an ideal situation.
Today, life is full of stressful and unwanted changes. Some of these events like a job change, job stress, death of loved one, divorced or any such situations create a stronger sense of anxiety, sadness, pain which can completely disrupt your emotional health. With emotions running high, your physical health gets affected causing you to develop high blood pressure, hormonal imbalances, stomach ulcers, weight issues etc. Not only this, your immune system gets affected greatly. You are more prone to disease and illness. So, how do we deal with this?
Controlling our external environment, or the circumstances and events in life is not within our control. There is nothing we can do about it. The only thing we have control is on our emotions, thoughts which do influence our physical health.
4 ways to handle better your emotional state:
1.Resilience: Always keep having a positive view of self. Love yourself and understand your self-worth. This helps in creating a security blanket around yourself. Having strong social support, being close to your loved ones, friends do matter. Learning to accept change in the environment, and keeping everything in proper perspective is important. Not everything in life will happen as per your will. All these mindsets help in building resilience to deal with any situations healthily.
2.A balanced life: Always count on your Blessings and gratefulness. Focus on things in your life for which you are grateful. Try not to get obsessed with anything like job pressure, relationship issues, problems at work or at home. Because things do change with time. Let go of the things which are stressful to your life and make time for things which you can enjoy. Create a balance in your life which helps you, in your both, emotional and physical health.
3.Calm your mind: There is a strong mind-body connection.The more your mind is calmer, the more you are stressfree and enjoy a healthier body. Always, make time to engage yourself in mind activity like meditation, listening to calm music, deep breathing, stretching or Yoga.
4.Self-care: To take care of emotional health, try taking care of your physical health by following a healthy routine of eating healthy, sleep, exercise. Releasing pent up emotions by sharing with loved ones and friends is important too. Exercising also helps in letting out pent up emotions.
I have been a yoga practitioner for years. It has been very instrumental in overall wellbeing in my life. Kapalabhati in Sanskrit means ‘skull cleaning or shining’. It is a breathing technique practised as Pranayama in yoga. Though the word sounds awkward, it is a breathing exercise of successive, rapid, forceful exhalations followed by brief passive inhalation.
The procedure is quite simple:
Sit comfortably in Padmasana or simply legs crossed.
Rest your hands on your knees.
Follow your normal breathing for some time.
In a quick moment, contract your abdominal muscles, and forcefully exhale air from both of your lungs.
Then allow air to fill your lungs slowly without effort.
Perform this cycle for 10 times at a stretch, then return to normal breathing. With daily practice, the cycle can easily go up to 120 times with each round.
Since this is an ancient old practise, in spite of having tremendous benefits, it has some contraindications.
Not to be practiced by women who are either pregnant or during menstrual cycle.
As there is too much of abdominal movements, not to be practiced by someone having abdominal hernia.
Not to be practiced by a person with slip disc, back pain or neck injury.
If you suffer from acute respiratory infections, it is better to rest, and let the infections go before doing any Pranayamas.
This practice has ample benefits. 7 important ones are. 1.It is a very useful tool to release congestion and volatile toxins from the body. It also cleans the nasal passage and respiratory system. It is powerful detoxifying method.
2.Since there is a contraction, relaxation of abdominal muscles, it stimulates and improves digestion. 3. It increases heart rate and blood circulation. 4. It is known to reduce stress, anxiety and tensions.
5.The endocrine system and glands are stimulated and regulated. 6.Since you focus entirely on your breathe, your mind gets rid of unnecessary thoughts, hence helps in concentrating. Therefore, a useful tool during the examination. 7. This breathing technique helps to treat diseases related to the nervous system, endocrine system and mental health.