November 7, 2016: Children born to mothers who were undernourished during pregnancy are more likely to suffer early ageing of the heart, a research has showed.
The animal study found that moderately reducing a mother’s food intake can make it more likely that the baby’s organs will show increased disease susceptibility and early ageing.
These changes in the heart could contribute to decreased quality of life, decreased exercise capability, and increased vulnerability to other diseases such as diabetes and hypertension — major risk factor for heart disease and stroke, the study said.
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Understanding the effect of maternal nutritional stress on ageing of the offspring will allow for interventions early in life, to prevent later-life heart problems, said a team of researchers led by Geoffrey Clarke from the University of Texas at San Antonio, US.
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For the study, the team used MRI scanning to analyse the hearts of male and female baboons whose mothers ate 30 per cent less than the normally fed baboons.
They found that the offspring of baboons, which ate less, showed signs of reduced heart function that comes with age.
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By five years of life, equivalent to 20 human years, the structure and function of the heart were already impaired.
“Women’s health during pregnancy is of fundamental importance to the lifetime health of their babies. Society must pay attention to improving women’s nutrition before and during pregnancy to prevent these adverse outcomes in babies,” said Peter Nathanielsz, Director at the University of Wyoming in the US.
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The study was published in The Journal of Physiology. (IANS)
Martial art has always been an art that kept our jaws dropped; the swift hand movements, graceful yet tricky foot works and the journey to find inner peace. Tai chi is a form of martial arts that circles in the philosophy of yin and yang to increase the qi or chi (which means life force of an entity) through gentle and graceful movements. That’s right, no breaking of bones or repeated punching of the opponents. Although it originated as a martial art, now Tai Chi for health is being exercised by over 2 billion people worldwide.
Since the global promotion of the health benefits of Tai Chi in the early 20th century, the majority interest has shown inclinations more towards personal wellness rather than defense training.
Philosophy of Tai Chi
Its principles are drawn to softness, patience, yielding, balance, tranquility and centeredness. The manifestation of all these aspects allows one to master Tai Chi.
The philosophy of Tai Chi martial art is centered on the attitude that by using hardness to resist a force, the injury is done on both sides. Instead, one should meet the opponent in its softness and follow its motion until the incoming force is exhausted. Surprisingly the lesson is to defeat strong with pliable.
Tai Chi for health institutes the same philosophy towards the wellness of the body.
Why is Tai Chi practiced for a healthy life?
This ancient Chinese art is based on three aspects: body (jing), energy (chi) and spirit (Shen). You are not practicing on body alone but on energy too, a well-combined exercise of meditation and movement. In China, people believe that Tai Chi can delay aging and prolong longevity. This exercise is adaptable to any age groups.
People are turning to Tai Chi to improve their health for its gentle and non-strenuous applications which has shown a positive effect on balance, flexibility, muscle strength and relieving stress. It has also significantly reduced pain and minimised the degree of depression in some cases.
More balance: We do not always fall because we stumble on something, but our body normally stays out of balance when we are not mindful. Tai Chi can help in reducing falls by correcting our posture. This is potentially beneficial to help in reducing elderly people from falling and tripping often.
Chronic heart failures: Though there are no definite conclusions that this therapy acts as a preventive measure against cardiovascular diseases it is evident that practicing Tai Chi is an advantage in keeping checks on one’s blood pressure and heart rates.
Reduction of chronic pain: A significant impact has been recorded to improve chronic pain by arthritis. A twelve-week course demonstrated bettering the stiffness and pain symptoms of the knee caused by osteoarthritis.
Reduced signs of fibromyalgia: Adhering to its philosophy of tranquility the practice of Tai Chi helps to calm the mind inducing a sound sleep to sleep-deprived fibromyalgia patients. This therapy also improves other symptoms like anxiety, numbness, headaches, fatigue, concentration and memory problems.
Stress buster: Stress is one of the most common and deadliest silent killers regardless of age. Practicing Tai Chi has been found to make stress go away. There is no direct record of reduction of stress, but subject studies have shown that mental control helped in distracting the mind to give attention elsewhere.
Seated Tai Chi: Good news for those who cannot exercise because they are confined to wheelchairs and also for those who are bound to work chairs. Without getting up, you can relieve yourself from stress, improve oxygen intake, balance blood pressure and build muscle strength. This technique involves stretching the upper body gently along with slow and graceful movement of the arms.
If your strength is perseverance, then you are already halfway through the course because this is a slow and challenging exercise. It may take years for you to get into the principles of healing through this therapy completely.
And if you are impatient, you could start looking forward to attaining one of Tai Chi’s principles which are ‘patience’ and move forward in completing the full course.
One can always have faith in this ancient practice because there is a plausible explanation as to why it still has a profound impact on human well being. The Tai Chi for Health Institute offers a good place to learn and teach Tai Chi martial arts therapy.