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The fear of an infection coupled with a countrywide closure of most institutions for kids have children sheltering at home with little outdoor play or activity.
A team from the University at Buffalo studied overweight children from Italy throughout March and April when the country was forced to go into lockdown in a bid to stop the spread of coronavirus. They found that children ate an additional meal per day, slept an extra half hour per day, added nearly five hours per day in front of screens, and dramatically increased their consumption of red meat, sugary drinks, and junk foods.
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With no clear timeline of when the schools will open, Indian parents are doing all they can to ensure their children stay fit. One of the steps that many parents have taken is to have a joint family workout session which includes the kids as well.
“The regular pre-lockdown routine was useful when it comes to fitness as my child would go out and play every day. The situation is different now, as schools have moved online, restricting every kid to their homes,” says Rupali, a Pune-based mother of a 12-year-old kid, who has enrolled her child for daily workout sessions on HealthifyStudio.
HealthifyMe, a leading health and fitness app, saw parents getting their kids to join the online home workout sessions. This was common across batches with both fathers and mothers getting their younger ones to exercise along with them. Now the company has launched personalized sessions for the kids themselves owing to the massive demand they were witnessing for such a session from parents.
In a month since the launch, over 1000 kids have already worked out via HealthifyStudio, with bookings for kids constituting 5 percent of the total bookings. Also, the demand for the children’s batch is rising rapidly with the number of sessions getting doubled from 45 to 90 in just 30 days, the brand told IANSlife.
Another parent, Priya Narayan from Pune said, “The prolonged lockdown has started taking a toll on the health of my child. My 7-year old who was very energetic is now just confined within the house with restricted movements and physical activities. As she was already overweight, it has now become even more important to indulge her in some form of physical activity. HealthifyMe’s online home workout session is one way to ensure that she stays healthy without compromising fun.”
“Over the past month, we have witnessed an increased interest from parents getting their kids to join the online home workout sessions. In one month of launch, over 1000 kids have already worked out via HealthifyStudio. The demand for the children’s batch is rising rapidly. Most of the surge is coming from cities Bengaluru, New Delhi, Mumbai, Pune, and Vadodara. Kids are really enjoying workout sessions in routines like Dance Fitness and Aerobics on the platform,” Tushar Vashisht, Co-founder ad CEO, HealthifyMe told IANSlife. (IANS)
Obtained naturally from the Sun, vitamin D is one of the most important vitamins for our overall health. The main function of vitamin D is to maintain the amount of calcium and phosphorus, the two components required to keep the bones strong. Vitamin D helps not only building and maintaining strong bones and strengthen the immune system but also reduces the risk of acute respiratory tract infections, cancer, diabetes, blood pressure, and much more.
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It can be stored in our body fat, the problem is that it is not so easy to get enough of it into our body. Most of our vitamin D comes from the sun, and about 60 percent of us have insufficient levels during winter. The amount of exposure we need to get enough of this important vitamin is generally low.
While only a few minutes of exposure during the summer can be sufficient, during the winter it might take a couple of hours of exposure in the middle of the day. Also, it is difficult to get enough vitamin D from food alone.
As we are slowly emerging out of our houses, after a long period of total lockdown, we are concerned about our safety at home and the workplace. For this reason, everyone is looking for a way to strengthen their immune system to prevent the menacing COVID-19 to get past the natural defense of the body. Also, since going out is only recommended for essential chores, people are not getting the necessary amount of sunlight that is needed to produce Vitamin D in the body, says Dr. Ravi Gaur, COO, Oncquest labs ltd.
Studies have shown that Vitamin D may affect different components of our immune system and its response to infection. It may help modulate our lymphocytes and inflammation-producing chemicals like cytokines that are important components of our immune response to invading viruses, adds Dr Gaur.
Researchers have discovered a strong correlation between severe vitamin D deficiency and mortality rates due to novel coronavirus (COVID-19). In one of the studies, scientists have discovered a strong correlation between vitamin D levels and cytokine storm — a hyperinflammatory condition caused by an overactive immune leading to complications and increasing mortality.
Not only does active Vitamin D hormone- Calcitriol, help regulate both the innate and adaptive immune systems, our first and second lines of defense against pathogens, but also its deficiency is associated with immune dysregulation, a breakdown or change in the control of immune system processes. Many of the ways Calcitriol affects the immune system are directly relevant to our ability to defend against viruses. This means that having healthy levels of Vitamin D does not prevent a patient from contracting the virus, but it may reduce complications and death.
How much is too much?
People should not take excessive doses of vitamin D, which might come with negative side effects. However, do not rush to the store and start hoarding Vitamin D supplements, the evidence is still in the study phase and more studies are required.
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In such difficult times, when everyone is fighting against the pandemic, even a small contribution by taking care of oneself will benefit the entire world. Vitamin D levels can be easily measured by a simple blood test. Vitamin D supplementation could be especially important for older people and high-risk individuals including healthcare workers who are now mostly indoors and wearing PPEs.
So, embrace the miracle nutrient in your routine to strengthen your body response systems and keep the immunity on top shape.
Since the demise of young and promising actor, Sushant Singh Rajput, nepotism is one word that is much in currency. Does nepotism really exist in the film industry? And if it does, can it make or mar a career? Can nepotism lead a person to end his life?
Nepotism as described in the dictionary as the practice among those with power or influence of favoring relatives or friends, especially by giving them jobs.
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Okay, so nepotism has been in existence all over the world but was so taken a given. Probably still is, even in the age of qualified management graduates. These, the qualified lot is used only as subordinates even when an enterprise grows too big, say, like a corporate business house.
In the film industry, nobody, no production house, no enterprise ever grows so big to need to outsource the management of the business. The recent trend of the corporate houses entering film business on the strength of management wizards has not been very successful. It is still a one-man show.
All over, it is always the next of kin who inherits a business and it is called as a family business.
So, why has the word nepotism suddenly become operative in relation to the film industry? And, do the accusations of nepotism bear so true to lead to the suicide of a young actor?
Favoring one over the other is human nature with each with its own reason. Favoritism has been a way of life since birth, in family, with parents, with kin and at school as well as at the place of work. Nobody ends life because a mother or a father finds a favorite in another kin, and the same goes when it comes to a school teacher or the boss at work.
Not being a parents’ or teacher’s or a boss’ favorite has never ruined a person’s prospects, let alone lead to suicide!
The media in India, the electronic kind, decided to sit in judgment and decided that prevailing nepotism in the film industry was the cause of Sushant’s death. That he was driven to it. The channels ran a tirade on prime time TV debates. The panelists consisted of some film-related persons who had not been able to make a mark — mostly film industry rejects.
In a debate, both sides should be represented as in ones who are accused of nepotism as well as those who accuse them in keeping with the channel’s view. The funny thing about these panelists was that each of them thought they had got into Rajput’s mind and come back. Not only that, but they also talked as if all of them had a first-hand experience of committing suicide!
Coming back to nepotism, the Hindi film industry has never been run by a single producer’s body, which would look after the sector’s interests. It has as many as four bodies representing the production sector. And we have just about half a dozen major production houses. As things stand now, these production houses have actors on their rosters. Like the old-time studio system, their careers are managed by these production houses. In that case, it is obvious that these producers would promote only their in-house artistes.
Film producers are a selfish lot. They chase only successful stars who land a face value and, who, they think will assure guaranteed returns. The same producers who ran after Rajesh Khanna were soon chasing Amitabh Bachchan. That is the way it works.
The filmmakers seek the reigning stars. Yash Raj Films was launched with “Daag”, a film with the then superstar, Rajesh Khanna. Don’t know if that is why the company’s name includes the word Raj. “Daag” was a blockbuster but this was just around the time when Khanna’s career had started tapering. The choice shifted to Amitabh Bachchan, and later to Shah Rukh Khan. It was all about worshipping the rising sun.
Sajid Nadiadwala, one of the most successful makers, made films with Salman Khan and the combination worked wonders for both. A few years back, I asked Sajid how things were different, now that he was a big maker with many hits and enjoying a great rapport with Salman!
What he said, was sort of a statement on how things worked in the film industry. Sajid said, earlier I used to take a rickshaw to go to Salman’s house for dates and wait for four hours for him to meet me; now I go in my Bentley to meet and seek dates from him and wait for four hours.
Karan Johar, another big name in today’s scheme of things, swore by Shah Rukh Khan. One saw his pictures in papers like family with the Khan family kids. It looked like a big brotherhood and a lifelong bond of loyalty. After all, Shah Rukh was the reigning superstar and a deity who helped build the empire, minuscule though it may be in terms of real money outside of the film industry.
So, who was it who could have been a threat to the career of Sushant, enough for him to take that drastic step of ending his life?
Akshay Kumar is the reigning superstar of the day. Yash Raj made just one film with him at the beginning of his career, Karan Johar never made a film with him till recently and Sajid Nadiadwala, though Akshay’s schoolmate and a family friend, started working with Akshay only after working with Salman was no longer possible. Yet, Akshay has been around for 30 years now, Yash Raj or not, Karan Johar or not!
Sushant had been around for seven years with 11 films to his credit, which is not bad by any standards. He was on his way to the top. And, nepotism and favoritism notwithstanding, the makers would have come to him eventually.
Money did not seem to be a problem with Sushant considering he paid a few lakh in rent for his sea-facing apartment, equipped with all things dear to him including a professional telescope to gaze at the galaxy, his prime interest. Sushant had also recently made donations of Rs 1.25 crore each to the flood relief funds of Nagaland and Kerala. He was generous with his charity work despite his aspirations to own a house of his own. Besides, he did not seek publicity for his charity work.
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There was no dearth of offers, even from reputed filmmakers, and Sushant was known to refuse many despite lucrative offers. Depression strikes to those who have been on the top say, like Manmohan Desai, Prakash Mehra, and such who saw the real glory to finally sit at home alone. Rising stars can’t afford depression.
Nepotism is a much-abused word lately, and the media, with its limited vocabulary, loves to flash it — be it politics, sports or films. (IANS)
Sprinting ahead, athlete Dutee Chand’s professional and personal achievements make any Indian proud. In 2019, she became the first woman Indian sprinter, clocking 11.32 seconds, to win gold in the 100m race at the Universiad. In the same year, she also became the first-ever Indian athlete to openly come out as a member of the LGBTQ+ community and of being in a same-sex relationship.
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The twenty-four-year-old has her share of ups and downs, depute being the first woman to represent India in the Olympics sprint event in 36 years. In an interview with IANSlife, the PUMA athlete and brand ambassador talks about her achievements and in celebration of Pride Month, discusses being India’s first openly gay athlete.
Sisters before misters, do you agree, and why?
Dutee Chand: I truly believe that ‘Empowered Women, Empower women.’ The support I received from them during my coming out journey gave me confidence. It gives me great happiness that PUMA is continuing to change the narrative in a progressive and positive way for women around the world. I broke many shackles to get to where I am. It helped me accept myself and urged me to come forward and make my own rules by being a ‘Propah Lady’.
How difficult is to be in a same-sex relationship, do you think times have changed, and India is more accepting?
Dutee Chand: Not anymore. I am sure my achievements have made things easier for me, but I also feel that people in our country have a greater acceptance level now and appreciate honesty. I am glad that brands like the one I represent have come out in the support of the community. My association with PUMA reinforces my belief that people do understand that there is more to me as an athlete.
You’ve been in the limelight whether it was your profession or your personal life. Do you think that this is a good thing and does it work in your favor or against you?
Dutee Chand: I’m glad to know that my story can be an inspiration for millions of women in the country. I have tried to live life on my own terms. I’m nobody to give advice to others. All I can say is that you have one life and live it the way it makes you happy.
What does ‘self-love’ mean you and what are its benefits?
Dutee Chand: For me, self-love is being strong, bold, and fearless. I believe in hard work and I will always keep giving it my all and driving myself to perform my best in all the competitions for my country.
Do you think people need to be more aware of the prejudice and the difficulties people of the LGBTQ+ community face?
Dutee Chand: I think we should not judge people and accept them as they are. We need to take pride in our diversity and that is what we should practice. Through my association with PUMA, I want to set an example for the younger generations that your personal choices don’t and shouldn’t exclude you from playing sports, being an athlete, or achieving your dreams.
Coronavirus has created an unprecedented crisis, how does an athlete like yourself deal with being in lockdown and have you had access to regular training?
Dutee Chand: Like all responsible citizens of this country, I too was observing the lockdown. I am grateful to have had the opportunity to help people in my village in whatever little way I could. It was so humbling and reassuring to receive blessings from the elderly in my village with so much love and affection. It was very satisfying that I could do something for the society and the village where I grew up. Where I stay, there is a track inside the campus, so I’m using that to train at the moment. (IANS)