Cell phones not linked to tumours

Mobile phone users can take heart. A new British research, part of a worldwide study initiated by the World Health Organization (WHO), has found that there is no link between cell phones and brain tumours.

The study conducted at the Institute of Cancer Research involved researchers from several universities. The experts looked at links between mobile use and the incidence of glioma, the most common kind of tumour found in the head.
The study looked at 966 patients with a glioma tumour over more than three years, alongside a control group of 1,716, probing their use of phones.
The team found nothing that indicated that using a mobile phone increased the risk of suffering a brain tumour, although they did find that the probability risk was slightly increased.
But the increase was statistically insignificant, according to German specialist Frank Gollnick, a biologist and scientific adviser to a research association looking into mobile telephony.
The recently published results are only part of the Interphone study being coordinated by the WHO. The study, which was launched in October 2000, is the largest of its kind into the possible link between mobile phone use and brain tumours.
Bernd Rainer Mueller, mobile telephony expert of the German Association for the Environment and Nature Conservation (BUND) sees no reason to doubt the recently released conclusions.
"Scientific methodology is not selective enough to record and represent the additional burden caused by these electromagnetic fields," Mueller said.
No previous study has covered so many subjects, who include not only a high number of tumour patients, but also many long-term mobile phone users.
In 2004, the results of a partial study conducted in Sweden were released that indicated that mobile phone users did in fact incur a higher risk of an acoustic neurinoma, a growth in the nerves governing hearing and balance.
These growths are seen as benign but as the conclusion came out of a partial study, experts are reluctant to base too much on them.
A final conclusion, however, will be possible only with the publication of the whole international body of work, which is expected by the end of this year.

Children and Television

Children between the ages two and 11 spend an average of one full day per week watching television. This is a very familiar scenario in many Indian homes today. With both parents away at work, in the urban, middle class families this trend is very common. Even when parents are at home, watching television is still the favoured family pastime. Research shows that on an average, a typical Indian household has the television set turned on for about seven hours each day. Kids and teenagers between six to 17 watch three to four hours of television a day. Watching television is a passive event. Children and adults remain completely immobile while viewing televisions. Most of these viewing experiences are quiet and non – interactive. Children absorb millions of images from the television set depending upon his choices.

What are the guidelines for watching TV?
Here are some of the guidelines to help you judge what kind of programmes will be beneficial for your children.
Television is fine when it deals with:
>Promotion of creativity and critical thinking
>Engages children to think and ask questions
>Encourages positive behaviours
>Encourages your child to read
>Reinforces the values that are important to you
>Inspires them to learn more
>Helps them to appreciate other cultures
>Entertains your children

Television is a problem when:
>Exposes children to violence as a means of problem solving
>Occupies too much of your their time
>Introduces subject matter that is not appropriate for children
>Allures children to buy different products
>It might promote negative behaviours
Can TV be a worthwhile teacher?
Moderate amounts of television viewing may be beneficial for the child, depending entirely on the type of programmes the child is watching, and the kind of supervision they are getting from their parents. Television can teach a child about the world and about people that they may not have access to. There are quite a few interesting as well as very informative programmes on television. A well – guided television viewing increases the general vocabulary of the child, provides the opportunities for them to learn about all kinds of things, which helps them in making choices regarding the area of interest. They get exposure to a wide range of activities that they may not get a chance to encounter. Television is probably the most effective of all media that aims to create social awareness.
Some tips for balanced viewing:
>Work together to keep a time chart of your child’s activities, including television viewing, homework, and play with friends. Then discuss what you believe to be a balanced set of activities.
>Set a weekly viewing limit. At the beginning of the week have your child select programmes you approve fit for watching.
>Encourage planned viewing. Have programme choices in mind before turning the set on so that it does not hamper their studies.
>Remember that children learn from their parents. If you watch a lot of television, the chances are that your child will also develop the same habit.
>If you want to improve the quality, look for the programmes that are designed for your child’s age group.
>It is very important to balance entertainment with other activities for the all round development of your child.
How is television linked to violence?
The risk of viewing any form of violence on television is that the child learns to behave in a violent manner. However viewing television violence does not necessarily cause a child to act in a violent manner, but can contribute to promoting a view that violence is common and acceptable in everyday life.Research done study the effects of brutality in television programmeson aggression in children, showed that the group of children who were exposed to violent television programmes exhibited a noticeably greater degree of aggression towards their toys and other children. On the other hand, the group that was not allowed to watch violent programmes displayed less aggression.

What should parents do?
It is important that parents limit the hours that a child watches television, besides censoring what he watches. Television should not be allowed to interfere with meal times and sleeping hours. Parents should work out a timetable for watching television with their children. This should reduce the need for parents to constantly nag their children about watching television.Television need not be viewed solely as a negative force. It has its advantages. Even if a child is watching a good educational programme, he will not learn as much if he is watching alone. If he is watching with another child or an adult who makes comments or asks questions about the programme, this will help the child to develop new ideas. Children who are interested in a particular programme may be motivated to read more about the subject of these programmes or question adults about it.Parents have to resign themselves to the fact that television is here to stay. So they just have to learn to deal with the problem.

Contact Lenses

Contact lenses

When light rays enter the eye, they are absorbed and converted into electrical signals by retinal nerves. These signals are subsequently sent to the brain where they are interpreted as visual images. In a normal eye, light rays enter the eye through the cornea (window of the eye) and are focused with the help of a crystalline lens behind the pupil at a point directly on the retina (the light sensitive nervous tissue at the back of the eyeball). However, only about four in ten people have normal visual acuity. For the rest, clear vision may be achieved by refocusing light rays with the use of corrective lenses.

How does a contact lens work?
Contact lenses are delicately crafted, very thin optical discs generally worn directly on the eye. They are comfortably held in place by a natural layer of tears present between the contact lens and the cornea. Contact lenses eliminate the barriers encountered with spectacles that interfere with the line of sight above, below and to the sides of the eye. They offer outstanding peripheral vision. In addition, contacts can reduce or eliminate the image distortion sometimes caused by eyeglasses.

What are the different types?
There are several types of contact lenses designed to fit the most common vision conditions:

Daily-wear soft lenses
These are made of soft, flexible plastics that allow oxygen to pass through to the eyes.
  • very short adaptation period
  • more comfortable and more difficult to dislodge
  • available in tints and bifocals too
  • great for active lifestyles
  • while careful cleaning is required, lens care maintenance products are simple and effective
Daily-wear disposable soft lenses
Single-use, daily wear lens that are designed to be worn for a single day, discarded at night, and replaced with a brand new pair.
  • typically no lens care is required
  • assures fresh and clean lenses when replaced
  • great for active lifestyles
Extended-wear soft lenses
Available for overnight wear. Made of soft, flexible plastics that allow oxygen to pass through to the eyes.
  • can usually be prescribed for up to seven days of wear without removal

Extended-wear disposable soft lenses
Soft lenses worn continuously from one to six nights, and then discarded.
  • require little or no cleaning
  • available in tints and bifocals too
  • spare lenses conveniently on hand
Frequent and planned replacement soft lenses
Soft daily or extended wear lenses that are replaced on a planned schedule, most often every two weeks, monthly or quarterly.
  • Assures fresh and clean lenses when replaced
  • available in most prescriptions
  • spare lenses conveniently on hand
Rigid Gas Permeable (RGP)
Made of slightly flexible plastics that allow oxygen to pass through to the eyes
  • vision may be sharper than with soft contact lenses
  • easy to put on and to care for durable with a relatively long life (1-2) years
  • available in tints (for handling purposes) and bifocals
  • daily-wear and extended-wear designs available
  • planned replacement schedule also available
How to insert contact lenses properly?

Wash, rinse and dry your hands before touching the contacts. A wet finger could cause a soft lens to flatten. Do not use fingernails when handling your lenses. If you are near a sink, close the drain to avoid any mishaps. Always insert your contacts in the same order to eliminate mix-ups. Pour the lens and storage fluid from the case into your palm. Examine your lens for particles, deposits or tears. Place the lens, cup side up, on your forefinger. Be sure the lens is right side out—the lens’ edge will appear almost straight up. If the lens is inside out, the edges will bow out slightly. If the lens is inside out, reverse it before proceeding.

  • Hold your upper eyelid or lashes to hinder blinking.
  • Pull your bottom eyelid down using your middle finger
  • Look up at the ceiling so that the white part of your eye shows and position the lens onto the white part
  • or, you can look forward at the lens and gently situate it in the centre of your eye
  • Remove your finger and let the bottom eyelid go before the top
  • Look down to position the lens
  • Close your eye for a moment.
  • Apply one to two eye drops (lens lubricant) if your lenses feel dry or vision blurs.
  • Repeat the same steps for inserting the lens for the left (or second) eye.
  • Be sure to have your eye doctor demonstrate these steps prior to your first attempt at inserting your lenses
Bend over so that your head is parallel to the floor, cup your left hand under your right eye. Place your thumb, index or forefinger of your right hand at the outer corner of your eyelids. Look straight down and open both eyes wide. Pull your finger in an upward and downward direction and remove the lens.
Cleanse, rinse and disinfect your lenses after removal and before wearing them again as contact lens cases can be a source of bacterial growth. Enzyme cleaners and cleaning solutions alone cannot substitute for disinfecting, although there are multipurpose products that can perform many of these functions if used as directed. Never use non-sterile homemade saline, distilled water or tap water for any part of your lens care regimen. Use products recommended by your eye care professional. Not all solutions can be used for all contact lenses. Solutions can become contaminated during use. Do not let the bottle tip touch any surface including your contact lenses.
Normal wearing schedules:
You should not wear lenses during the first 2 days, but frequently practice insertion and removal until proficient.
  • It is essential to build up tolerance gradually
  • You should wear lenses 2 hours a day for 2 days, increase the wearing time to 3 hours for 2 days and then add one hour every third day until all day tolerance is achieved.
What are the benefits?

  • For those who lead an active lifestyle, contacts can provide close to natural vision, with no side effects if worn and fitted correctly. Excellent peripheral vision for sports, for driving, for safety etc.
  • For those who prefer the way they look without glasses or find glasses to be cumbersome and awkward, contacts can provide ease, convenience and comfort.
  • For those who have always wanted to change their eye colour.
  • For those who work or play in an environment in which spectacles are not an option, contacts allow for comfortable wear.
  • For those who think laser surgery and its risks are frightening and prohibitively expensive, contacts can provide a safe, comfortable and time-tested alternative.
Safety tips for contact lens wearers:
  • Visit a reputable eyecare professional for a complete eye examination every 12 months or more frequently if directed by your doctor
  • Use only contact lenses if they are medically approved and only if prescribed by a licensed eye care practitioner
  • Never swap contact lens with another person
  • Do not wear lenses longer than prescribed, nor when sleeping unless otherwise directed
    If eyes become red or irritated, remove the lenses immediately and consult your doctor
Replace contacts as recommended by your doctor because they wear out over time. Throw away disposable lenses after recommended wearing period


Suicide is a complex behaviour. Many medical, psychological and social factors such as depression, substance abuse, personal crisis, and the availability of firearms or a lethal supply of drugs can put a person at risk of suicide. Response to these risk factors varies dramatically from person to person. It is impossible to predict with certainty who will kill themselves, or attempt to do so.

A suicide attempt is a clear indication that something is gravely wrong in a person’s life. Irrespective of the race or age of the person; or how rich or poor they are, most people who commit suicide have a mental or emotional disorder. The most common underlying disorder is depression, 30% to 70% of suicide victims suffer from major depression or bipolar (manic-depressive) disorder. Alcoholism and other drug abuse increase the risk of suicide.
Any one of these symptoms does not necessarily mean the person is suicidal, but several of these symptoms may signal a need for help:
> Verbal suicide threats
> Expressions of hopelessness and helplessness
> Previous suicide attempts
> Daring or risk-taking behaviour
> Personality change
> Depression
> Giving away prised possession
> Lack of interest in future plans
Eight out of ten suicidal persons give some sign of their intentions. People who talk about suicide, threaten to commit suicide, or call suicide crisis centres are 30 times more likely than average to kill themselves.

If someone is suicidal:
> Trust one’s instincts that the person may be in trouble
> Talk with the person about his concerns. Communication needs to include listening.
> Ask direct questions without being judgmental. Determine if the person has a specific plan to carry out the suicide. The more detailed the plan, the greater the risk
> Get professional help, even if the person resists
> Do not leave the person alone
> Do not swear to secrecy
> Do not act shocked or judgmental
> Do not counsel the person oneself
No single therapeutic approach is suitable for all suicidal persons or suicidal tendencies. The most common ways to treat underlying illnesses associated with suicide are with medication, talk therapy or a combination of the two.

Cognitive (talk therapy) and behavioural (changing behaviour) therapies aim at relieving the despair of suicidal patients by showing them other solutions to their problems and new ways to think about themselves and their world. Behavioural methods, such as training in assertiveness, problem-solving, social skills, and muscle relaxation, may reduce depression, anxiety, and social ineptitude.

Cognitive and behavioural homework assignments are planned in collaboration with the patient and explained as experiments that will be educational even if they fail. The therapist emphasises that the patient is doing most of the work, because it is especially important for a suicidal person not to see the therapist as necessary for their survival.

Recent research strongly supports the use of medication to treat the underlying depression associated with suicide. Antidepressant medication act on chemical pathways of the brain related to mood. There are many very effective antidepressants. The two most common types are selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs). Other new types of antidepressants (e.g. alpha-2 antagonist, selective norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs) and aminoketones), and an older class, monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) are also prescribed by some doctors.
Antidepressant medications are not habit-forming. Although some symptoms such as insomnia, often improve within a week or two, it may take three or four weeks before one feels better; the full benefit of medication may require six to eight weeks of treatment. Sometimes changes need to be made in the dosage or medication type before improvements are noticed. It is usually recommended that medications be taken for at least four to nine months after the depressive symptoms have improved. People with chronic depression may need to stay on medication to prevent or lessen further episodes.

People taking antidepressants should be monitored by a doctor who knows about treating clinical depression to ensure the best treatment with the fewest side effects. It is also very important that the doctor be informed about all other medicines that are taken, including vitamins and herbal supplements, in order to help avoid dangerous interactions. Alcohol or other drugs can interact negatively with antidepressant medication. One should not discontinue medication without discussing the decision with the doctor.

Suicide survivors: those left behind
When an individual commits suicide or tries to, that person's family and close friends often are devastated and experience intense and persistent pain. Suicide survivors may suffer through repeated nightmares and flashbacks of the suicide scene, and they may avoid people and places that remind them of the suicide. Some survivors lose interest in activities they once enjoyed and grow emotionally numb feeling incapable of caring. Beyond bereavement, suicide survivors may themselves become depressed or develop another mental illness due to severe stress.
It is fairly common for suicide survivors to develop a mental illness, especially depression. Counselling or psychotherapy can help one cope with the crisis. Support groups made up of other suicide survivors also can help one find one’s way through the maze of emotions and physical changes one may be experiencing. Counselling or support groups led by trained professionals are especially important if one does not one have adequate support from family and friends. Many suicide survivors refuse to seek help because they think it is a sign of weakness. But it is just the opposite. Seeking help when one needs it is a sign of strength.

Causes of Cancer

Smoking is very often the main cause of cancer. It kills us silently and drains money from us quietly. There are 4000 harmful chemicals(though in diluted form) in one stick of cigarette. Taking one puff is 600 times worst than inhaling the exhaust fumes from vehicles.

Some Food that causes cancer are:
> Barbecued Food
> Deep Fried Food
> Overheating Meat
> Food that is high in fat causes our bile to secrete acid that contains a chemical which is a promoter of cancer cells.
> Food that contains preservatives, too much salt or nitrates(e.g. Canned food, Salted Egg & veggies, sausages, etc. )
> Overnight Rice (where Aflatoxin is accumulated)
> Food that is low in fibre : our body need 25 gm of both soluble & insoluble fibre daily. We must drink atleast 1.5 litres of plain water a day.
> Contaminated Food (e.g. moulded bread causes our body to secrete toxins that may eventually lead to liver cancer in the long run. Never eat bread that is kept in room temperature for more than 2 days especially in a humid weather like Chennai's.

  • Types of fat and which is the best
  1. Highly Recommended for Health :
> Olive Oil - The best of all oils. It does not absorb in our body
> Fish Oil - Omega 3 (contained in NI's Circulytes) has poly-unsaturated fat. It's good for our brain cells.
> Peanut Oil - It contains Vitamin E. A small dosage is recommended only.

Not Recommended for Health

> Vegetable fat - Palm oil is worst than coconut oil. It is high in cholesterol and highly unsaturated.
> Coconut Oil - It has saturated fat.

  • Specific Food & Beverages
> Egg when eaten too much can cause high colon cancer. Risk Ovary cancer, Prostate Cancer.
> Cabbage is highly recommended for health reason.
> Tomato is best eaten raw with a bit of olive oil for better absorption. Other alternative is to take tomato sauce.
> Coffee is good because it contains2 anti-oxidants, Inhaling the coffee aroma for half each day is equivalent to 2 oranges a day. However the residue of over-burned coffee is extremely bad for health. It can cause cancer.
> Tea,as long as it is in original tea leaves and not processed into BOH or Lipton packets, it is good for health. tea contains 30 anti-oxidants. Recommended dosage is 4 cups daily.

Danger of Soft Drinks

The average pH of soft drinks is pH 3.4. This acidity is strong enough to dissolve teeth and bones! Our Human body stops building bones at around the age of 30. After that it'll be dissolving about 8-18% of the bones each year through the urine, depending on the acidity of the food intake( acidity does not depend on the taste of food, but on the ratio of potassium/ calcium/ magnesium/ etc. to phosphorus).

All the dissolved calcium compounds accumulate in the arteries,veins, skin tissue and organs. This affects the functioning of the kidney(kidney stones). Soft drinks do not have any nutritional value( in terms of vitamins and minerals). They have higher sugar content, higher acidity, and more additives such as preservatives and colorings. Some people like to take cold soft drinks after each meal, guess what's the impact? Our body has an optimum temperature of 37 degrees for the functioning of digestive enzymes. The temperature of cold soft drinks is much less than 37, sometimes quite close to 0. This will lower the effectiveness of the enzymes and put stress on the digestive system, digesting less food. In fact the food gets fermented. The fermented food produce bad smelling gases, decays and forms toxins, which absorbed in the intestines, get circulated in the blood and is delivered to the development of various diseases. Think before you drink any soft drink.

Have you ever thought what you drink an aerated drink? You gulp down carbon dioxide, something that no sane person in the world would advise you to do. Few months ago, there was a competition in Delhi University "Who can drink the most soft drink?". The winner drank 8 bottles of soft drink and died on the spot because too much of carbon dioxide in the blood and not enough oxygen. From then on, the principle banned all soft drinks from the university canteen.

Someone put a broken tooth in a bottle of soft drink and in 10 days it is dissolved! Teeth and bones are the only human organs that stay intact for years after death. Imagine what the drink must be doing to your delicate soft intestines and stomach lining!