Sunday July 22, 2018

Mysterious Health Incidents Affect 1 More American in Cuba

In all, 25 Americans have been affected by the mystery ailment in Cuba

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A view of the U.S. Embassy in Havana, Cuba on Sept.18, 2017.
A view of the U.S. Embassy in Havana, Cuba on Sept.18, 2017. VOA
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One more U.S. Embassy employee in Havana, Cuba, has been affected by mysterious health incidents, the State Department said.

State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said one of two Americans recently evacuated from Cuba was “medically confirmed” to have been affected, while the other was “still being evaluated” by doctors.

25 Americans affected

In all, 25 Americans have been affected by the mystery ailment in Cuba.

“We still don’t know, to this day, what is causing it and who is responsible,” Nauert said, noting that investigations were underway in Havana as well as Guangzhou, China, where one employee experienced similar symptoms recently.

The United States has said that the Cuba incidents started in late 2016. The State Department calls them “specific attacks” but has not said what caused them or who was behind them. Cuba has adamantly denied involvement or knowledge.

Initial speculation centered on some type of sonic attack owing to strange sounds heard by those affected, but an interim FBI report in January found no evidence that sound waves could have caused the damage, The Associated Press has reported.

Secretary Kerry Touts Virtues of 10-Year U.S.-China Business and Tourism Visas Before Presenting First Documents in Beijing
Secretary Kerry Touts Virtues of 10-Year U.S.-China Business and Tourism Visas Before Presenting First Documents in Beijing, flickr

Warning issued in China

The State Department issued a health warning after the employee in China reported experiencing “subtle and vague, but abnormal, sensations of sound and pressure” and was diagnosed with a mild traumatic brain injury.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo described it as a “serious medical incident.”

Also read: Cuba Invites United Nations human rights Investigator for first time in decade regarding Human Trafficking

The new confirmation came less than a week after the U.S. renewed demands on Cuba to determine the source of the “attacks” on U.S. diplomats. Cuba responded by again denying any involvement in or knowledge of any such attacks. (VOA)

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Why Exercise on Empty Stomach May be Better for Your Health

This is the first study to show that feeding prior to acute exercise affects post-exercise adipose tissue gene expression

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The study analysed effects of eating versus fasting on gene expression in adipose (fat) tissue in response to exercise. Pixabay

If you have been wondering whether it is better to eat or fast before a workout, researchers now have an answer. A new study has found that exercise on empty stomach is better for your health in the long term.

The study analysed effects of eating versus fasting on gene expression in adipose (fat) tissue in response to exercise.

After eating, adipose tissue “is busy responding to the meal and a bout of exercise at this time will not stimulate the same (beneficial) changes in adipose tissue”, explained corresponding author of the study Dylan Thompson from University of Bath in Britain.

“This means that exercise in a fasted state might provoke more favourable changes in adipose tissue, and this could be beneficial for health in the long term,” Thompson added.

“We propose that feeding is likely to blunt long-term adipose tissue adaptation to regular exercise,” the researchers noted in the study published in the American Journal of Physiology — Endocrinology and Metabolism.

The study participants were a group of overweight males who walked for 60 minutes at 60 per cent maximum oxygen consumption on an empty stomach and, on another occasion, two hours after consuming a high-calorie carbohydrate-rich breakfast.

The research team took multiple blood samples after eating or fasting and after exercising.

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Representational image. Pixabay

The researchers also collected fat tissue samples immediately before and one hour after walking.

Gene expression in the adipose tissue differed significantly in the two trials.

The expression of two genes, PDK4 and HSL, increased when the men fasted and exercised and decreased when they ate before exercising.

The rise in PDK4 likely indicates that stored fat was used to fuel metabolism during exercise instead of carbohydrates from the recent meal.

Also Read: Even Light Exercises Have Health Benefits

HSL typically increases when adipose tissue uses stored energy to support increased activity, such as during exercise, Thompson said.

These results reinforce the view that “adipose tissue often faces competing challenges,” Thompson wrote.

“This is the first study to show that feeding prior to acute exercise affects post-exercise adipose tissue gene expression,” the study said. (Bollywood Country)