Mar 30, 2011

What Are The Benefits Of The Mediterranean Diet?

The Mediterranean Diet is more than a diet; It is a lifelong living style. You have to adopt it, as a religion. Decades ago, it was the natural way of life of many people around the Mediterranean Basin, especially in Spain, Italy and Greece. High activity, Mediterranean nutrition, anti stress attitudes and not much money shaped a culture that can be declared soon Immaterial Human Heritage by UNESCO. Nowadays, these circumstances have changed in the mentioned countries, but many responsible people are still keeping or returning to what is considered to be the healthiest diet in the world.Traditionally, Western Europe has two broad nutritional approaches - the Northern European and Southern European. The Mediterranean Diet is Southern European, and more specifically focuses on the eating habits of the people of Crete, much of Greece, and southern Italy. Today, Spain, southern France, and Portugal are also included; even though Portugal does not have a Mediterranean coast.

What does the Mediterranean Diet include?

  • Lots of plant foods
  • Fresh fruit as dessert
  • High consumption of beans, nuts, cereals and seeds
  • Olive oil as the main source of dietary fat
  • Cheese and yogurt as the main dairy foods
  • Moderate amounts of fish and poultry
  • No more than about four eggs each week
  • Small amounts of red meat each week (compared to northern Europe)
  • Low to moderate amounts of wine
  • 25% to 35% of calorie intake consists of fat
  • Saturated fat makes up no more than 8% of calorie intake
The Mediterranean diet is known to be low in saturated fat, high in monounsaturated fat, and high in dietary fiber.

Even though Dr. Ancel Keys (USA), who was stationed in southern Italy, publicized the Mediterranean diet, it was not until about the 1990s that the Mediterranean diet was widely recognized and followed elsewhere by nutritionally conscious people.

Compared to other Western diets, the Mediterranean diet was seen by others as a bit of an enigma. Although fat consumption is high, the prevalence of hypertension, cardiovascular disease, obesity, cancer and diabetes has always been significantly lower in Mediterranean countries than northern European countries and the USA.

The T4 Euthanasia Program in Legal History of Germany

Stamp of the Greater German Reich, depicting A...Image via Wikipedia
           Action T4 (German: Aktion T4) was the name used after World War II for the Euthanasia Program in Nazi Germany officially spanning September 1939 until August 1941 but continued unofficially    until the demise of the Nazi regime in 1945 and even beyond, during which physicians killed thousands of people specified in Hitler's secret memo of September 1, 1939, as suffering patients "judged incurably sick, by critical medical examination".

Although officialy started in september 1939 it is stated that Euthanasia Program (Action T4) initated with a sort of trial balloon with the instruction of Hitler to Karl Brandt in late 1938 to valuate the euthanasia petition of a little boy, who was actually killed in July 1939.Hitler also instructed Brandt to proceed in the same manner in similar cases.  The foundation of the Committee for the Scientific Treatment of Severe, Genetically Determined Illness in order to prepare and proceed with the massive secret killing of infants took place in May 1939 and the respective secret order to start the registration of ill children, took place in 18 August 1939, three weeks after the euthanasia of the mentioned boy.
From the official Nazi files, there is evidence that during the official stage 70,273 people were killed. The Nuremberg Trials found evidence that German and Austrian physicians continued the extermination of patients after October 1941 and evidence that about 275,000 people were killed under T4. More recent research based on files that were recovered after 1990 gives a figure of at least 200,000 physically or mentally handicapped people that were killed by medication, starvation, or in the gas chambers between 1939 and 1945.

Bundesarchiv Bild 152-04-28, Heilanstalt Schönbrunn, Kinder

            The name T4 was an abbreviation of "Tiergartenstraße 4", the address of a villa in the Berlin borough of Tiergarten which was the headquarters of the Gemeinnützige Stiftung für Heil- und Anstaltspflege, bearing the euphemistic name literally translating into English: as Charitable Foundation for Cure and Institutional Care. This body operated under the direction of Philipp Bouhler, the head of Hitler's private chancellery,and Dr. Karl Brandt, Hitler's personal physician. This villa no longer exists, but a plaque set in the pavement on Tiergartenstraße marks its location.

The "euthanasia decree", written on Adolf Hitler's personal stationery and dated 1 September 1939, reads as follows:
               " Reich Leader Bouhler and Dr. Brandt are charged with the responsibility for expanding the authority of physicians, to be designated by name, to the end that patients considered incurable according to the best available human judgment [menschlichem Ermessen] of their state of health, can be granted a mercy death [Gnadentod]."

The T4 program is thought to have developed from the Nazi Party's policy of "racial hygiene", the belief that the German people needed to be "cleansed" of "racially unsound" elements, which included people with disabilities. According to this view, the euthanasia program represents an evolution in policy toward the later Holocaust of the Jews of Europe.

The idea of enforcing "racial hygiene" had been an essential element of Hitler's ideology from its earliest days. In his book Mein Kampf (1924), Hitler wrote:
He who is bodily and mentally not sound and deserving may not perpetuate this misfortune in the bodies of his children. The völkische [people's] state has to perform the most gigantic rearing-task here. One day, however, it will appear as a deed greater than the most victorious wars of our present bourgeois era.

Mar 27, 2011

Facts about Intercourse during Menstruation

         Sex during periods is a matter of personal preference and cultural beliefs. Medically, it is safe to have sex during your period as long as you don't use it as a ticket to have unprotected sex.
       Deciding to have sexual intercourse requires knowledge about both the male and female reproductive systems, STDS, and birth control. Sex can become even more complicated when it comes to deciding when and where to do the deed; in particular, you may find that you or your partner want to have sex during your menstrual period. But is sex during your period safe? Here are some answers to a few of the most common questions regarding period sex. 

Is it Safe To Have Sex During Your Period?
Many men and women worry that having sexual intercourse during a woman's period is unhealthy. Though frowned upon in many cultures and faiths, sexual intercourse during menstruation is entirely normal and completely healthy.
Worries about this act generally stem from societal misconceptions about menstrual blood: most girls are taught from a young age that their menstrual blood is unclean and "dirty," and therefore should be hidden and contained at all times. However, menstrual blood is an entirely natural bodily fluid, and does not in anyway affect a man's penis or a woman's reproductive tract. As long as you are engaging in safe and protected sexual intercourse, it is entirely alright for you and your partner to have sex during your period.

Benefits of having sex during menstruation:

  • Sex may help relieve pre or post menstrual symptoms if you get an orgasm
  • Endorphins released during an orgasm are natural painkillers and mood lifters, which can allay cramps, headaches, mild depression, and irritability associated with periods
  • Some women also claim enjoying sex more when they are menstruating because of the feelings of fullness in the pelvic and genital areas

Mar 23, 2011

Clinical Aspects of Priapism -[Abnormal Persistent Erection of the Penis]


Priapism is defined as an abnormal persistent erection of the penis. It is an involuntary prolonged erection unrelated to sexual stimulation and unrelieved by ejaculation. As with many medical emergencies, the saying "time is tissue" holds true for priapism. This condition is a true urologic emergency, and early intervention allows the best chance for functional recovery.


Priapism is the result of persistent engorgement of the corpora cavernosa of the penis, originating from a disturbance in the mechanisms that control normal penile detumescence, depicted in the image below. In most cases, the ventral corpora spongiosum and glans penis remain flaccid.

Two types of priapism are generally described.
           ^Arterial high-flow priapism usually is secondary to a rupture of a cavernous artery and unregulated flow into the lacunar spaces. This rare type of priapism is usually not painful and results from penetrating penile trauma or a blunt perineal injury.
           ^Low-flow priapism is usually due to full and unremitting corporeal veno-occlusion where venous stasis and deoxygenated blood pools within the cavernous tissue. Prolonged veno-occlusive priapism results in fibrosis of the penis and a loss of the ability to achieve an erection. Significant changes at the cellular level are noted within 24 hours in veno-occlusive priapism, whereas arterial priapism is not associated with fibrotic change.

Mar 18, 2011

Lesbian and Gay Parenting

         The APA Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Concerns Office has worked since 1975 to eliminate the stigma of mental illness which has been mistakenly associated with same-sex sexual orientation and to reduce prejudice, discrimination, and violence against lesbian, gay, and bisexual people. Major functions of the office include support to APA's Committee on Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Concerns; liaison with the Society for the Psychological Study of Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Issues (APA Division 44) and with other APA groups that have an interest in lesbian, gay, and bisexual concerns; policy analysis, development, and advocacy for APA policy; technical assistance, information, and referral to APA members, other professionals, policymakers, the media, and the public; and development and dissemination of publications and other information on lesbian, gay and bisexual concerns in psychology.

The Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Concerns Office is housed within the Public Interest Directorate, which works to advance psychology as a means of promoting human welfare. Other programs within the Public Interest Directorate work on issues related to AIDS; adolescent health; aging; children, youth and families; disability; ethnic minorities; urban issues; violence; women; and workplace health.

Mar 16, 2011

Airline Sex Discrimination Policy Controversy

      Some airlines like British Airways, Qantas and Air New Zealand, All Nippon Airlines have attracted criticism for controversial seating policies which discriminate against adult male passengers on the basis of their gender.

       In March 2001, it was revealed that British Airways had a policy of not seating adult male passengers next to unaccompanied children, even if the child's parents are elsewhere on the plane. This led to accusations that the airline considered all men to be potential pedophiles and women to be incapable of such abuse. The issue was first raised when a business executive had moved seats to be closer to two of his colleagues. A flight attendant then asked him to move because he was then sitting next to two unaccompanied children which was a breach of BA company policy. The executive, a head hunter, said he felt humiliated as a result, stating "I felt I was being singled out and that I was being accused of something." British Airways admitted that staff were under instructions to keep men away from unaccompanied children whenever possible because of the dangers of male pedophiles.

    This issue again came to prominence in 2005 following complaints by Michael Kemp who had been instructed to swap seats with his wife when on a GB Airways flight. The flight attendant informed him that for an adult male stranger to be sitting next to a child was a breach of the airline's child welfare regulations. This case was arguably even more notable than other cases as the girl's parents were in fact on board the flight but such a policy still applied. Michele Elliot, director of the children's charity Kidscape stated that the rule "is utterly absurd. It brands all men as potential sex offenders."
The most high profile victim of the policy was politician (and now London Mayor) Boris Johnson, who criticized the company after they mistakenly attempted to separate him from his own children on a flight. He stated that those who create or defend such policies "fail to understand the terrible damage that is done by this system of presuming guilt in the entire male population just because of the tendencies of a tiny minority," linking such discrimination to the reduced number of male teachers and therefore lower achievement in schools. Like others, Johnson also raised the policy's flaw in ignoring female abusers and branded airlines with such policies as "cowardly" for giving in to "loony hysteria."

In January 2010 businessman Mirko Fischer from Luxembourg sued the airline for sex discrimination following an incident where he was forced to change seats as a result of the policy, thus separating him from his pregnant wife. Fischer stated "I was made to feel like a criminal in front of other passengers. It was totally humiliating."On 24 June 2010, Mr Fischer was successful in winning compensation from British Airways with the company admitting sex discrimination in Mr Fischer's case. BA paid £2,161 in costs and £750 in damages which Fischer donated to child protection charities. BA said that the "policy was now under review".
In August 2010, British Airways changed its policy and began seating unaccompanied minors in a nondiscriminatory manner near the cabin crew.

Japan's All Nippon Airways introduces women-only bathrooms on its planes

     Ever since 2006, Nippon Airways did a one month awareness campaign each year in which it asks domestic fliers to visit the bathroom before boarding to reduce their body weight and therefore cut the plane’s carbon dioxide emissions. The airline is also planning to install “washlets” in its planes. These are electric toilet seats with water sprays for washing. It is a very common sight in Japan and generally a source of amusement for first time visitors and users.

    The NCFM has respectfully asks that ANA not employ women-only bathrooms on flights to and from California airports. All passengers, male and female, should be treated equally, said the National Coalition For Men (NCFM).

"Men will be denied a lavatory because they are men though when necessary men will be allowed to ask permission from a flight attendant to use the women-only lavatory, which is gender-based discrimination, unequal treatment, and in violation of California law". Said Harry A. Crouch President NCFM.

     Advertising and providing women-only bathrooms, while denying male passengers equal men-only bathrooms, is as illegal and repugnant as providing only men-only bathrooms on ANA’s flights while denying female passengers women-only bathrooms. So is advertising and providing Caucasian-only bathrooms, but denying the same discount to customers of color. Or advertising and providing heterosexual- or Christian-only bathrooms. Simply put, it is against the law for a business in California – especially a business licensed by the State of California – to discriminate against consumers based on protected personal characteristics such as sex, race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, disability, medical condition, marital status, or sexual orientation.  

Mar 15, 2011

BRAT diet

What is the BRAT diet?

The BRAT diet is a treatment historically prescribed for patients with gastrointestinal distress such as diarrhea, dyspepsia, and/or gastroenteritis.
 If you have recently had an upset stomach or diarrhea, your doctor may suggest that you limit your diet to bland foods that won’t irritate your stomach. The BRAT diet is a bland-food diet that is often recommended for adults and children. BRAT stands for  :
These bland, low-fiber foods are easy to digest and may help with diarrhea, and most people who have a stomach illness can tolerate them pretty well. The BRAT diet has spawned other eating regimens that have a similar effect on upset stomach.
They include the BRATY diet, which stands for:

Mar 14, 2011

Erotomania revisited: Clinical course and treatment


Erotomania is a rare disorder in which an individual has a delusional belief that a person of higher social status falls in love and makes amorous advances towards him/her. Little is known about the background, classification, treatment, or outcome of individuals with this disorder.
I Know You Really Love Me: A Psychiatrist's Account of Stalking and Obsessive Love The purpose of this study was to evaluate current criteria for diagnosing and classifying primary and secondary erotomania in addition to examining course, outcome, and impact on victims of erotomania.
Semistructured interviews covering personal and family details in addition to treatment and outcome to date were performed on a series of erotomanic patients identified in a defined area.
  • Evaluation of diagnosis used DSM-IV and other criteria.:
-15 erotomanic subjects (11 female, four male) were identified. Most were isolated, without a partner or full-time occupation.
-40% had a first-degree relative with a psychiatric history and of those half had a first-degree relative with a mono-delusional disorder.
-Less than half of the objects of their affection, mainly noncelebrities, were subject to harassment.
-Subjects with primary erotomania and erotomania secondary to other psychiatric diagnoses were identified using DSM-IV criteria.

   Ellis and Mellsop's criteria were found to be useful in assessing erotomania but we could not replicate Seeman's fixed and recurrent groups.
Treatment and outcome was better than expected particularly for those with primary erotomania and erotomanics with a diagnosis of bipolar affective disorder. In this series, erotomanic symptoms largely occurred in the context of other psychiatric disorders, although subjects with pure erotomanic symptoms were seen.
    Subjects were less dangerous and engaged in less harassment of victims than the literature suggests. Subjects were often isolated, unemployed, and with few social contacts. Strong family psychiatric histories were seen particularly with regard to mono-delusional disorders raising the possibility of genetic inheritance. An adaptation of Ellis and Mellsop's criteria was suggested for the diagnosis of primary and secondary erotomania. Response to treatment and prognosis was good, particularly for primary erotomania and erotomania secondary to bipolar affective disorder.

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Mar 12, 2011

[1] Calendar of Holidays and Major Events - March 2011

Sat, 12th Mar: Genealogy Day
International Fanny Pack Day
Anniversary - Girl Scouts
Birthday - Jack Kerouac (writer/poet)
Fiesta de las Fallas (Spain)
Independence Day (Mauritius)
Moshoeshoe's Day (Lesotho)
National Day (Gabon)
Sun, 13th Mar: Check Your Batteries Day
Daylight Savings Time Begins
Good Samaritan Involvement Day
National Open an Umbrella Indoors Day
Planet Uranus Day
Anniversary - Ken Doll Introduction
Deaf History Month (03/13-04/15)
Anniversary - Earmuffs
Bretzelsonndeg (Luxembourg)

Mon, 14th Mar: Mother Day
Pi Day
Birthday - Albert Einstein (genius)
Commonwealth Day (UK)
Tue, 15th Mar: Brutus Day
Ides of March
True Confessions Day
Birthday - President Andrew Jackson (7th President)
Admission Day (Maine)
Constitution Day (Belarus)
Wed, 16th Mar: Curlew Day
Freedom Of Information Day
Goddard Day
Lips Appreciation Day
Ta'Anit Ester (Jewish - begins at sundown)
Birthday - President James Madison (4th President)
Thu, 17th Mar: Absolutely Incredible Kid Day
Camp Fire USA/Founder's Day
Evacuation Day
St. Patrick's Day
Ta'Anit Ester (Fast of Esther - Jewish)
National Day (Ireland)
Fri, 18th Mar: Awkward Moments Day
Forgive Mom and Dad Day
National Biodiesal Day
Birthday - President Grover Cleveland (22nd & 24th President)
Flag Day (Aruba)
Sat, 19th Mar: National Quilting Day
Perigean Spring Tides
Purim (Jewish - begins at sundown)
Saint Joseph's Day
Swallows Return to San Juan Capistrano Day
Worm Moon
Anniversary - Operation Iraqi Freedom
Save the Florida Panther Day (Florida)
National Day of Oil (Iran)
Sun, 20th Mar: Great American Meatout
Holi (Hindu - India)
Kiss Your Fiance Day
National Agriculture Day
National Jump Out! Day
Ostara (Wiccan)
Proposal Day
Purim (Jewish)
Spring Begins
Vernal Equinox
Won't You Be MY Neighbor Day
Birthday - Fred "Mr." Rodgers (children's host)
Independence Day (Tunisia)

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List of Youngest Birth Mothers

This is a list of the youngest known birth mothers younger than 12 years of age. Three of the 12 entries for age 9 or younger are for mothers in Peru. Two of these cases are the result of rape by cousins. For entries for mothers aged 10 or 11, the United States is the most common location.

List of Drugs Affected by Grapefruit

         Grapefruit and grapefruit juice have the potential to interact with numerous drugs. A number of organic compounds, identified as furanocoumarin derivatives, interfere with the hepatic and intestinal enzyme cytochrome P450 isoform CYP3A4 and are therefore primarily responsible for the interaction. However, bioactive compounds in grapefruit juice may also interfere with P-glycoprotein and organic anion transporting polypeptides (OATPs) either increasing or decreasing bio-availability of a number of drugs. Pomelo (the Asian fruit which was crossed with an orange to produce grapefruit) also contains high amounts of furanocoumarin derivatives.
    Certain chemicals that grapefruit products and citrus fruits contain can interfere with the enzymes that break down (metabolize) various medications in your digestive system. As a result, more medication stays in your body. This can increase the potency of your medication to potentially dangerous levels, causing serious side effects.

    Mar 8, 2011

    Urinary Tract Infections

    What is a urinary tract infection (UTI)?

              The urinary tract is comprised of the kidneys, ureters, bladder, and urethra A urinary tract infection (UTI) is an infection caused by pathogenic organisms (for eg. bacteria, fungi, or parasites) in any of the structures that comprise the urinary tract. However, this is the broad definition of urinary tract infections; many authors prefer to use more specific terms that localize the urinary tract infection to the major structural segment involved such as
                    -urethritis (urethral infection),
                    -cystitis (bladder infection),
                    -ureter infection, and
                    -pyelonephritis (kidney infection).
    Other structures that eventually connect to or share close anatomic proximity to the urinary tract (for example, prostate, epididymis, and vagina) are sometimes included in the discussion of UTIs because they may either cause or be caused by UTIs.
    UTIs are common, more common in women than men, leading to approximately 8.3 million doctor visits per year. Although some infections go unnoticed, UTIs can cause problems that range from dysuria (pain and/or burning when urinating) to organ damage and even death. The kidneys are the active organs that, during their average production of about 1.5 quarts of urine per day, function to help keep electrolytes and fluids (for example, potassium, sodium, water) in balance, assist removal of waste products (urea), and produce a hormone that aids to form red blood cells. If kidneys are injured or destroyed by infection, these vital functions can be damaged or lost.

    While some investigators state that UTIs are not transmitted from person to person, other investigators dispute this and say UTIs may be contagious and recommend that sex partners avoid relations until the UTI has cleared. There is no dispute about UTIs caused by sexually transmitted disease (STD) organisms; these infections (gonorrhea, chlamydia) are easily transmitted between sex partners and are very contagious.

    Mar 2, 2011

    Cardiac Rhythms Synchronize with Music

           Music, particularly pieces that contain crescendos or gradual increases in volume, elicits synchronized cardiovascular and respiratory responses in young people that are similar in both musicians and nonmusicians, according to new research.

    It is well-known that music can elicit strong positive or negative emotions, but this new research shows that music is also linked to unconscious physiological responses, said the study's lead author, Luciano Bernardi, MD, professor of internal medicine at Pavia University, in Italy.

    "Here we show, probably for the first time, that there is a continuous interaction between the music dynamics and our cardiovascular system, whether there are conscious emotions or not," Dr. Bernardi said in an interview.
    These findings could have implications for the potential use of music as a therapeutic tool, he added. "We know now that music can affect the cardiovascular system, and if we understand how this works, then we can use it," he said.
    The research was published online June 22 and in the June 30 issue of Circulation.

    Operative Music
    Researchers tracked the cardiovascular and respiratory profile of 24 healthy subjects aged 24 to 26 years old, of whom 12 were experienced choristers and 12 were age- and sex-matched controls with no musical training.

    The Health Dangers of Aspartame

    Aspartame is a non-saccharine artificial sweetener currently used in over 6,000 diet and low calorie food products. Popular trademark brands of the sweetener in the United States include NutraSweet®, Equal®, and Tropicana Slim®, which are used to sweeten a number of sodas and chewing gums.

    However, research done on aspartame has shown that it may not be completely safe for human consumption, and may cause a number of health complications if taken in large doses. Efforts to revoke FDA approval on aspartame have so far been unsuccessful, so it is advisable to simply avoid these products whenever possible.

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