Making the Kailash–Mansarovar Yatra safe

Health Care 710 Comments

Known as the abode of Lord Shiva and his consort Goddess Parvati, Kailash Mansarovar is set in the remote mountains of western Tibet. The snow–clad Mt. Kailash is situated at an altitude of 22,228 ft (6,714 m) and is regarded as the world’s most sacred place. The pilgrimage is a 53 km-walk around the Kailash. It is the spiritual center for four great religions: Tibetan Buddhism, Hinduism, the Jain religion and the pre Buddhist animistic religion – Bonpo. The Mansarovar Lake is one of the holiest, captivating, stimulating, famous and the most ancient lake known to the civilization. It is the source of four great rivers: the Indus, the Sutlej, the Brahmaputra and the Karnali. The Kailash Mansarovar Yatra involves trekking at high altitudes up to 19,500 feet, under inhospitable conditions including extreme cold and rugged terrain and hence demands good health and physical fitness. The travel may prove hazardous for those who are not physically or medically fit.

  • People with problems of hypertension, diabetes, heart ailments, epilepsy and asthma should avoid this journey or consult their doctor before planning to undertake the Yatra.
  • One should start the physical fitness program several weeks before starting the journey. Walking, hiking and backpacking over rugged terrain are the best ways to prepare for a trek. Any regular regime of strenuous aerobic exercise is also beneficial as also running, swimming and cycling prior to departure.
  • Only citizens who are over 18 years old are allowed to travel.
  • The duration of the pilgrimage is 26 days.
  • Medical tests include: Hb, TLC, DLC, ESR, platelet count, blood sugar (F & PP), BLOOD urea, creatinine, serum bilurubin & SGOT–SGPT, blood group, lipid profile, urine R/E, chest X–ray, treadmill test, ECG, pulmonary function tests (Optional) and stress–echo–test (if recommended by doctor).
  • One should take appropriate quantities of the right medicines for a wide variety of ailments: Your personal medicines + antibiotics for stomach infection, chest infection etc, breathing/heart and BP related problems, diarrhea, vomiting and body–pain related oral medicines and topical ointments, anti allergic drugs.
  • Women’s hygiene products and medicines
  • Doctor’s certificate: Pulse rate, height, weight, respiratory rate, blood pressure, current ailment, past ailments, allergies if any, drugs on, prophylactic drugs list.

Dr KK Aggarwal
Editor in Chief

6 simple steps to keep your mind sharp at any age (Harvard Health Beat Excerpts)

Health Care 34 Comments

1. Keep learning: Challenging your brain with mental exercise is believed to activate processes that help maintain individual brain cells and stimulate communication among them.

2. Use all your senses: The more senses you use in learning something, the more of your brain will be involved in retaining the memory.

3. Believe in yourself: Middle–aged and older learners do worse on memory tasks when they’re exposed to negative stereotypes about aging and memory, and better when the messages are positive about memory preservation into old age.

4. Prioritize your brain use: Take advantage of calendars and planners, maps, shopping lists, file folders, and address books to keep routine information accessible. Designate a place at home for your glasses, purse, keys, and other items you use often.

5. Repeat what you want to know: When you want to remember something you’ve just heard, read, or thought about, repeat it out loud or write it down.

6. Space it out: Repetition is most potent as a learning tool when it’s properly timed. It’s best not to repeat something many times in a short period, as if you were cramming for an exam. Instead, re–study the essentials after increasingly longer periods of time — once an hour, then every few hours, then every day. Spacing out periods of study is particularly valuable when you are trying to master complicated information, such as the details of a new work assignment.

Dr KK Aggarwal
Editor in Chief

Vegetarian diet may lower risk for developing metabolic syndrome

Health Care 55 Comments

Individuals who consume a vegetarian diet have a lower risk for developing the metabolic syndrome than those who do not, according to a study published in the journal Diabetes Care.

After examining the diets of some 773 people, researchers found those adhering to a vegetarian dietary pattern were at a 56% lower risk for developing the metabolic syndrome than nonvegetarians, and that triglycerides, glucose, blood pressure, waist circumference, and body mass index (BMI) were all significantly lower in vegetarians than in non–vegetarians, even after adjusting for age, gender, ethnicity, smoking, alcohol intake, physical activity, and dietary intake.

The incidence of metabolic syndrome was low in Vedic era. The weekly fast with no carbohydrate intake and vegetarian diet were all preventive.

The only example of probable metabolic syndrome in mythology was of Lord Ganesha with increased abdominal circumference with preference for eating sweets or laddoos. But Ganesha pooja is incomplete without the use of durva grass, consumption of bel, katha (cathechu) and jamun. In Ayurveda, these are known to posses anti-metabolic syndrome properties (insulin sensitizers).

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