Home / Health & Fitness (page 2)

Category Archives: Health & Fitness

Are You At Risk of Dengue Fever? Learn How To Prevent It

Dengue Prevention Tips

 source

source

Dengue Fever is a tropical viral disease caused by Dengue Virus, vector born in nature transmitted by Aedes Aegypti Mosquito (having characteristics zebra like black and white marking on body). The disease outspreads in the season of winter as the mosquito grow best at temperature between 250C to 350C affecting 400 million people yearly (CDC). The disease is more common in densely populated urban areas of Southeast Asia (Pakistan, India and China)[AdSense-A]

Currently there is no definite vaccine available at market against Dengue Fever (although there are 6 vaccines in the process of preparation) thus the only preventive way is to “Fight the Bite” by keeping the mosquito away or by limiting the number of mosquito by reducing their habitats

Aedes Aegypti mosquito, unlike female anopheles mosquito of Malaria is active more at daytime rather than night and bites more at dusk and dawn. Thus the following preventive measure should be taken more seriously at that specific time

01. Awareness of Dengue  Fever and Prevention

Dengue Awareness

Dengue Awareness source

  • The first and prime important step to prevent and eliminate dengue from your community is that you must have awareness about what the disease is, when it spread, how the disease occurs, who is responsible for, who is transmitting the disease and how it can be prevented. Take part in Dengue awareness campaign or health education seminars on Dengue to have better understanding or disease and it prevention

 02. Clothing Help Fight the Bite

Wear Protective Clothing

Wear Protective Clothing source

  • Try to cover much of your skin by wearing loose-fitting, light colored clothing (as dark color especially black and blue attract mosquito) during day time or when going outdoor, to protect from mosquito bit.
  • Don’t wear half sleeves shirts or tights as mosquito can bit through tight fitting clothes.
  • Wearing shoes (boots) with socks is ideal than wearing sandals or open shoes

03. Use Some Good Mosquito Repellent

Wear Mosquito Repellent

Wear Mosquito Repellent source

  • Use a good mosquito repellent (those containing Picaridin or DEET are thought to be best) on the exposed areas of your skin including hands & feet, cuff & collars to keep away the Aedes aegypti (Vector of Dengue).
  • If you don’t want to wear mosquito repellent all the day, apply it at least in dawn and dusk.
  • Note: Use these repellent in infants and babies with caution and should not be used in child under two months of age.
  • A traditional way to get rid of mosquito and keep them away from you is to keep Ocimum tenuiflorum or tulsi plant in the room. Tulsi plant is a natural mosquito repellent.

04. Mosquito Killer Works Best

Use Some Mosquito Killer

Use Some Mosquito Killer source

  • Use a good mosquito killer coil, mat or plug-in devices containing liquid insecticide to kill mosquito. Application of liquid insecticide spray directly on the mosquito kill mosquito effectively. Place mosquito coil or apply spray neat the entrance to the room or home such as doors or windows.

 05. Mosquito Net Keep the Vector away

Mosquito Bed Net

Mosquito Bed Net source

  • Although the Aedes aegypti is more active during day time, but still sleeping under mosquito bed net helps to avoid mosquito bit at dawn.
  • Make sure that screens or net over the doors and window are in good conditions and have no hole or space to let mosquito enter the room.

06. Vector Control! Just Eliminate the Mosquito form Surrounding

Guppy Fish

Guppy Fish source

  • Vector means the Dengue transmitting mosquito (Aedes aegypti). This mosquito breeds in stagnant water standing in water storage containers, vases, bowels, old tyres. Don’t let the water stand in these places. Try to keep your environment clean and dry.
  • Frequently changes the water in vases, bowels and tanks. Cover water containers, bamboo pole holders, cans and buckets as these all are potential sites for dengue mosquito breeding.
  • Stagnant water, if not possible to cover or dry, pour kerosene oil to make a thin layer over water prevent the mosquito breeding.
  • In swimming pools or larger water tanks which cannot be cover or put kerosene oil in, the vector control can be achieved using Guppy fish (a small mosquito eating fish). Just release some Guppy fishes into the tank and they will eat the dengue mosquito larva.

07. Isolate the Infected Person

Isolate the Dengue Infected Person

Isolate the Dengue Infected Person source

  • Infected person can be a source of dengue act as a reservoir from where the mosquito can take the germs (dengue virus) and transmit it to you. If (unfortunately) one of your family members is Dengue positive, limit him/her to a separate room and strictly prevent the infected person from mosquito bit as the patient can transmit the virus to mosquito which can be then transmitted to anyone else in the family.
Read More »

10 Health Benefits of Honey – The Golden Elixir

Health Benefits of Honey

Health Benefits of Honey

Honey is being in used for thousands of year not only for its great taste but for its potential health benefits. The use of honey in remedies and for its possible health benefits has been reported in ayurvedic, Greek, Roman and Islamic texts. Holy Prophet Mohammed (P.B.U.H) exalted the healing powers and health benefits of honey and so the ancient Greek philosophers. It is supposed by Greek philosopher that consuming honey could make the life longer.[AdSense-A]

Honey contains 70% to 80% sugar in the form of Fructose (the sweetest sugar), glucose, sucrose and maltose along with vitamins and minerals with 17% water. This composition makes honey the one of the sweetest and healthiest foods with great source of energy and other health benefits. Here are the top 10 health benefits of honey.

01. Healing Wound and Burns

Honey was traditionally used on the skin for soothing effects and was used as home remedies for treating wounds and skin infections including burns. Recants researches show that the topical application of honey over the wound or burnt skin area is as effective as the application of antiseptics or silver nitrate (the usual treatment of burns). Honey has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory nature as well as has drying effects; while apply over the wound, these properties of Honey helps keep the wound aseptic (free of germs), reduce swelling thus reduce pain and promotes wound healing and leave the wound without scars.

02. Fight Infections

While making honey, bees add certain enzymes to it including Lysozyme (the power bacterial destroying enzyme natural occurs in living organisms) and others that make hydrogen per oxide (a potent antiseptic). Another study done at University of Amsterdam in 2010 reported that the anti-bacterial activity of honey is also due to the presence of defensin – 1 a protein which kills the bacteria. With all these powerful bacteriolytic enzymes and protein substances, honey is the best natural antibacterial and antifungal agent which even kills the antibiotic resistant species. Honey (especially Manuka honey) may helpful in treating athletic foot (a fungal infection of skin), other skin infections and the upper respiratory infections.

03. Soothes Cough and Sore Throat

Another proven health benefit of honey is to sooth cough and treat sore throats. Honey, due to its soothing, softening and antibacterial effects, show proven effectiveness to soothes cough, especially nocturnal cough (sleep time cough) in children. A study on 110 children which involves a single dose of honey (the buckwheat honey) to the children with night time cough reveals that the honey is as effective in relieving nocturnal cough as the conventional treatment of cough with dextromethorphan.

Honey is just not the remedy for cough only but it also helps in treating sore throats. Taking pure honey or adding it to drinks (hot water or tea) soothes the throats and kills the germs (bacteria) which cause throat infection.

04. Treating Allergies May relieve seasonal allergies

Seasonal allergies are among common health problems the symptoms of which can be lessen with honey. Many people using honey to get rid off or get relive from seasonal allergies, and this facts is prove by scientific research that honey may be useful in minimizing such conditions due to its anti-inflammatory effects. A study on a group of 36 people who have seasonal allergy shows better response to honey as compared to the placebo agent.

05. Prevent Cancer and Heart Diseases

Honey is anti-cancer though it doesn’t cure cancer but it prevents it. Honey contains antioxidants and flavonoids which to some extent reduce the risk of developing cancer and heart disease as well. This sound good as if it is true then honey will be the cheapest medicine to prevent cancer and heart diseases.

06. Beautiful skin

As stated earlier, honey was used as a home remedy to treat wound and burns; it was also used with other ingredients in facial masks for beautiful skin and conditioner for hairs. The anti-bacterial nature and bleaching effects of honey makes it an excellent face Cleanser to treat acne and blemish skin.

The moisturizing, hydrating and softening effects of honey make it wonderful conditioner for hair give the dull hair shining.

07. Blood Sugar Regulation

Honey contains Fructose in higher percentage as compared to Glucose. Fructose is sweeter then glucose but it doesn’t require insulin (a hormone that is necessary for glucose metabolism) for metabolism and can enter to the cells without insulin, thus helps to regulate the blood sugar level

08. Reduce Gastric Ulcers and GI disorders

The cause of Gastric ulcer is H. Pylori bacteria that inhabit the gastric (stomach) mucosa. Antibacterial nature of honey prevents the excess colonization, thus infection of stomach (gastritis). Eating honey regularly prevent GERD (Gastro-esophageal reflux Disease) because honey is 100 time more viscous than water (at room temperature) prevent regurgitation or reflux back of the stomach content.

09. Nutrients Rich Food

Honey is the nature’s nutrients rich food and far more beneficial than the artificial vitamin supplements as it contain a wide range of vitamins including the vitamins from B complex group and some vital minerals including zinc (the immunity booster), calcium (the bone cement), iron (the hematonic), copper, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus and manganese.

10. Makes great workout fuel

Beyond its great taste, one of the great health benefits of honey is it is the instant source of energy because honey is already digest by bees and absorb rapidly in gastrointestinal tract fuel up the body instantly.

Honey contain glucose which absorb rapidly in intestine, gives immediate energy shoot and Fructose has low hypoglycemic index, absorbed slowly providing sustain level of energy to body. Again, honey is not only comes with sugar, it contain essential vitamins and minerals making honey the perfect workout fuel.

Honey is used and added to water or drinks by many professional athletes to get instant energy to fuel up their bodies, prevent fatigue during endurance event, boost performance and enhance muscle recovery after stressful event.

Read More »

10 interesting Facts about your Heart You Must Know

Interesting Human Heart Facts

What do you know else about the Heart other than being repressing it as a symbol of love? Heart is not just to deal with love; it is one of the complex body organs, busy to perform some important job to pump blood to part of your body continually (and still make sometime for love). It is a standalone organ which can live even if the controlling center of body, the brain dies. [AdSense-A]

So find some interesting facts about human heart below

01. The power of Human Heart

Human heart with no more than the size of your won fist, beats 100,000 times a day to send 2000 gallons of blood across the 60, 000 miles of blood vessels from your head to feet. If we multiply this figure with whole life, the heart pumps nearly 1.5 million barrels during your whole life enough to fill 200 tankers of 10,000 gallon.

02. Trip to Moon with Energy Generated By Your Heart

Heart is really mighty muscular pump which daily, during pumping blood across body, generates enough power to drive a truck for 32 kilometers or 20 miles. You may have a trip to The Moon and back to The Earth in your lifetime just on the energy by your heart. So have a nice trip.

03. Heart, The Un-fatigable

This tiny mighty muscular pump begins to beat when you were in womb at 4th week and beats till one pass away. Un-fatigable. It will not stop beating even if the brain dies because heart has its own intrinsic regulatory system which initiates the heart beat.

04. What Reduces the Risk of Heart Diseases?

Now something about heart disease. According to some recent studies on heart disease, scientist found that have more education and less chances to die from heart disease. The rate of heart disease is also low vegetarians (about 19% less than non-vegetarians) and in those eating dark chocolate daily. Dark chocolate reduces the risk of heart diseases up to 30%.

05. Heart Diseases in Prehistoric People

With all the above researches to reduce the risk, heart diseases are still the greatest risk of death. The traces of heart disease are found in mummies from prehistoric civilization (3,000 years old)

06. What Increases the Risk of Heart Diseases?

Are you taking Multivitamins to strengthen your bones, boost your brain or to stay active (as most bran claims), remember multivitamins have linked with heart diseases and increases the risk of heart disease especially heart cancer (although heart cancer are very rare as heart loses its ability to divide early in the life). So be careful while taking such boosters.

07. Men vs. Women Heart Attack

Though there are minor differences in the anatomy and physiology of male and female (women have smaller but faster heart), the symptoms of heart diseases are differs in both. Males feel chest pain while females feel nausea, have vomiting and shoulder pain instead of chest pain.

08. Some interesting Facts about Treatment of Heart Diseases

It’s now turn to know something about investigation and treatment of heart diseases, the first mapping of human heart is done in 1929 by German surgeon Werner Forssmann. He mapped his own heart using a long catheter inserted via his arm vein directed toward heart.

09. The First Heart Transplantation

The first heart transplanted successfully in 1967by Dr. Christian Barnard. Though the procedure was successful but the patient didn’t survive and died after 18 days of the operation.

10. Synchronize your Heart Beat

When you listen to music, your heart beat and rhythm changes according to the rhythm of music. Even when a group of singers (choir) sings and in synchrony, their heart beats also synchronize. If you are not a singer or don’t like music, you can still synchronize your heart beat with your lover by gazing into each other’s eyes for two or three minutes

What else? If You Know some other interesting facts about Heart, let us know in Comments and if you like these facts, share it with your friends.

Read More »

10 Brain-Healthy Foods To Boost Your Brain & Make You Smarter

Brain Healthy Diet

Your diet can make you smarter and yes you can bet it as there is a link between diet and cognition. Although it is known that eating well is vital for our physical health but it is now proved that healthy diet is crucial for mental health as well. A good diet keeps your brain cells healthy, your gray matter happy and makes you smarter. New researches on the influences of diet on brain reveal that what we eat has great effect on brain everyday skill and cognition. So be careful to choose what you eat[AdSense-A]

In fact, our brain ages with us as we ages, but adding a smart and brain-healthy food to our menu can improve memory as well as other brain functions which tends to diminished as we ages. But remember, diet is not just the mean to stand smarter; it can prevent form many brain disorders including Alzheimer’s, Dementia and many more which usually occurs as you got ages.

Eating well doesn’t mean to eat more; quantity doesn’t matter, but the quality of what you eat and what is suitable for your health and health of brain as well.

Following is the list of 10 easily available foods that boost the brainpower, improve cognition, enhance learning and make you smarter. So add this to your menu

1. Fishes and Seafood

Wild Salmon Fish

Brain boosters: Wild Salmon Fish [source: Flicker.com]

Seafood especially oily fishes like wild salmon, tuna, and sardines are richer in omega-3 which contains EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (Docosahexaenoic Acid) both are essential fatty acids mean it can not produced in body. DHA is one of the main fatty acid required for healthy development of brain and eyes comprises about 40% of the fatty acid in cell membrane of neurons and for transmitting of nerve impulses between brain cells.

Researches show the link between low DHA levels and risk of developing dementia (memory loss) and Alzheimer’s disease (neurodegenerative disorder) and those who consume fish at least 3 times a week have high levels of DHA in their body which reduce the risk of having Alzheimer’s disease in later ages by 39%.

2. Leafy Green and Cruciferous Veggies

Leafy Green and Cruciferous Vegetables

Brain Boosters: Leafy Green and Cruciferous Vegetables [source: bombshellfitness.com]

Green leafy vegetables including cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, kale, and Brussels sprouts are packed with antioxidants like vitamin A, Vitamin C and carotenoids (a plant compounds) which are powerful brain protectors prevent brain cells damage from free radicals. These vegetables are also riche in vitamin K, which is recognized to improve cognitive function and brainpower

[AdSense-A]

3. Avocado, Oils, Nuts, and Seeds

 

Avocado, Oil and Seeds

Brain boosters: Avocado, Oil and Seeds [source: Pixabay.com ]

Avocado is as good as green leafy veggies since it is; along with Vitamin A and C, a good source of Vitamin E, another powerful antioxidant and those who consume a moderate quantity of Vitamin E rich foods have 67% less likely to develop Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease

Another benefit of avocado is its monounsaturated fat which improves blood circulation to the parts of body and brain as well. Improved circulation leads to improve cognition and healthy brain

4. Whole grains

Whole Grains

Brain boosters: Ehole Grains [source: paulashealthyliving.com]

Comprises only 2% of body weight, the brain consumes 25% of blood glucose to get energy required for steady work of brain. To meet the brain requirement of energy, whole grains are the best source as compared to refined sugar and carbohydrates as refined sugar digest and utilize quickly, didn’t meet the energy requirement whole day. On the other hand, Whole grains including Oatmeal, brown pasta and wheat bran are rich in glucose but have low GI (Glycemic Index) releases glucose gradually into the blood give you a steady level of glucose. This keeps you and your brain to stay focused and mentally alert throughout the day

5. Dark chocolate

Dark Chocolate

Brain boosters: Dark Chocolate [source: common.wikimedia.com ]

Dark chocolate contains flavonoids, a powerful antioxidant, along with natural brain stimulants such as caffeine. These ingredients of dark chocolate enable it to protect brain from free radicals and the caffeine improves the focus and concentration and also enhances the production of endorphins (naturally occurring pain killer).

A research conducted on 16 healthy adults who consuming 150 mg chocolate for five days reveals improved circulation to brain, leads to improve brain function (cognition) [source]

But keep in mind “more can be dangerous” as the chocolate can cause many health problems including acne, increase in the occurrence of migraine headache (due to tyramine) and promote weight gain obesity

6. Berries

Berries, Bleuberries, Elderberries

Brain boosters: Berries [source: common.wikimedia.com ]

Berries are considered as powerhouse of antioxidants. Berries including elderberries are loaded with quercetin, a flavonoid type of antioxidant, vital to your brain’s health, built healthy connection between neurons (brain cells). While blueberries on the other hands, has proven effect on memory improvement and delaying the loss of short term memory and reduce the risk and effects of age related (senile) dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.

Studies on animals’ shows that consumption of Berries considerably enhanced the learning capacity and motor skills of aging rats, making them mentally equivalent to much younger rats [source]

7. Nuts and seeds

Seeds and Nuts

Brain boosters: Seeds and Nuts[source: common.wikimedia.com ]

Nuts and seeds (including walnuts, Brazil nuts, hazelnuts, peanuts, almonds, cashews sunflower seeds, flax seeds etc) along with green leafy vegetables are another good source of Vitamin E which is a proven brain booster and brain protectors as well.

Vitamin E has been associated with great protective and promotive effects on the brain thus, a good intake of these Vitamin E loaded food substance is crucial helps you to prevent cognitive decline, as you got ages.

8. Vegetable Juice

Vegetable (Tomato) Juice

Brain boosters: Vegetable (Tomato) Juice [source: common.wikimedia.com ]

Vegetables are the reservoirs of essential vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, true gold mines for health of your brain. Although you may consumes vegetables on daily basis in cooked form but too much cooking and over heating may destroy the essence of their nutritious worth.

Vegetable Juice is the way to get all essential nutrients from these precious foods substances, although you can eat vegetables itself if you like their test. I personally like tomato juice for both its better test and nutritional values (and of course for its bright red colorJ). Tomato consist powerful antioxidant lycopene along with Vitamins A and Vitamin C, which could help prevent against the development of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia by disarming the effects of free radicals.

Try to make juice at your own at home as it is easy. Commercial juice products can have artificial flavor, added sugar and may not be fresh.

9. Curry

Curry Powder

Brain Boosters: Curry Powder [source: sospici.com]

After all the meats and sweets, it is time to boost your brain with a traditional spicy curry. Curry is often used in Indian cuisines and its active ingredients includes turmeric and curcumin are potent antioxidant and, in addition, they also enhance the role of body own antioxidants. These substances also destroy Alzheimer’s-causing proteins (amyloid plaques) in the brain preventing the condition to occur.

Researches on animal shows that Curcumin enhance the process of birth of new brain cells (neurogenesis) by increasing the level of Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF, a type of growth hormone) in the brain, and promote connection among existing brain cells . With these properties, curry and it ingredients could help to improve memory and fight away neurodegenerative process in brain.

10. Water

Water

Brain boosters: Fresh Water [source: pixabay.com ]

Water is vital for health as it is a universal solvent required for all kind of metabolism to take place. 75% of your brain is water thus a steady water intake is required for proper functioning of brain.

Study on the effects of water on brain conducted at Ohio University reseals that people whose were well hydrated significantly get better score on cognitive tests compared with those who weren’t drinking plenty of water.

Another research from University of east London evaluated the effects of water on brainpower and shows that drinking three cups of water at the beginning of a task can increase the brain’s reaction time by 14%.

Read More »

10 Interesting Facts About Human Body

Interesting-Human-Body-Facts

Human-Body-Facts

1. Stomach is full of a strong digestive acid the HCL, which (in specific duration of time) can digest bones but don’t worry, stomach cannot eat itself because the lining of stomach renew itself quickly than the acid digest.[AdSense-A]

2.  Lungs consist of 300,000 millions capillaries (tiny blood vessels) which is queued end to end would stretch up to 1500 miles. If all the blood vessels in human body were placed end to end, they would stretch up to 25000 miles, enough to circle the globe.

3. It is always confusing and most of us think the liver or the brain as the largest organ of the body. But the largest organ of our body is skin (integument). It weighs 8 to 10 pounds (triple the weight of Brain and liver together) making 15% of total body weight. If stretch out, the skin would cover the surface area of 16 to 22 square feet or 2 square meters.

4.  Human bones are 4 times stronger than concert (especially the bone of thigh or femur bone). A cubic inch of bone can bear the load of 19000 lbs.

5.  The largest proportion of dust on our bed, table and Television is the cells that shads from our skin. Human skin is continually shad dead cells on an astonishing rate of 30,000 to 40,000 cells per minutes and about 8 pounds per year. During half of our life, our skin shads approximately 80 kg of dead cells

6. Salivary glands in our mouth produce about 0.5 to 0.7 ml saliva per minute (up to 3 ml per minutes when you see or eat delicious food) making 1.5 liter per day. In this perspective, we can produce enough saliva to fill up to two swimming pools

7.  On average, the testicles produce 10 million sperms each day. Enough to repopulate the entire world in just 6 months.

8. On an average day, ocular muscles which helps to focus eye, is move about 100,000 times. To put that in perspective, this would be same as walking 50 miles every day for our leg muscles

9.  A postage-stamp sized piece of circumcised foreskin (prepuce) takes only 21 days to grow enough to cover 3 basket ball courts. The circumcised foreskin is frequently grown in lab and is used as a skin graft while treating deep burns.

10.  Among all the mammalian, Humans are the only mammal who cannot swallow and breath at very same time.

Read More »

10 Cool and Interesting Facts about Fungi

10 INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT FUNGI

Fungi are of the diverse organisms that hold many interesting facts and secretes. They are unicellular microscopic to Multicelluar Macroscopic organisms which contribute its role in the various aspects of Life on the Earth.
Read some interesting facts about fungi below.[AdSense-A]

1. Primary Decomposer – Eco friendly Organism

Wood Decomposition by fungi

Fungi are the primary agents and the major contributors in Global Carbon Cycle and bio-degradation or decomposition of dead plants, animal and wood debris. On an average, about EIGHTY- FIVE BILLION tons of carbon in the form of Carbon Dioxide is returned annually to the atmosphere mainly by fungi. They remain active in winter and at low temperature (as low as -7 degree Celsius) where other decomposers (e.g. bacteria) shut down. Although the process of degradation by fungi is slow. It will take almost 100 or even more years for fungi to decompose a hardwood trunk.
(Note: In order to prevent food from fungal decay, you have to store it on temperature lower than -18 C, as they remain active on below zero temperature)

2. The Oldest & Largest Living Organism On the Earth

Largest Organism on the Earth

Fungi are one of the oldest organisms existing on the earth. Their 545 million years old fossils are found in Russia. They are not just one of the oldest species but the largest organism on the earth as well. Yes, it seems strange but true, Fungi are the largest organism on the Earth. Armillary ostoyae (discovered in 1998) occupies 2, 384 acres or 10 square Km (equal to 1665 football fields) weigh about 605 matric tons , hold the record as the Earth largest organism. Armillaria ostoyae is not just the largest but the oldest living creature on the earth, which is on an estimate, 24,000 to 8650 years old.

[AdSense-A]

3. The Fastest Living Organism as Well

Fungi Spores

The fastest living organism on the earth is fungi. Hat throwing fungi distempers and ejects their spores at a remarkable speed which is 100 to 200 times faster than the speed of sound. The spores have enough force to pull a 20 G object. Human eyes are unable to detect the speed of fungi spores ejection with unaided eyes; scientists recorded the speed of fungal spores being ejected with an ultra high speed camera and slow down the frame rate 10,000 times to be able to see them.

4. Neither Plants Nor Animal, The Belong to Kingdom Fungi

Kingdom Fungi

Fungi can be unicellular (yeast), multi-cellular (molds, mushrooms) or dimorphic (both forms). They resemble somewhat to the cells of plants (as they have cell wall around their cells) and animals (as they don’t have chlorophyll and water vacuole). On other hand, some of their characteristics are quite different from animals and plants, thus they have their own kingdom.

 5.  Fungi – Parasitic enemy, Mutualistic Friends

Saprophytics fungi

Fungi, unlike plants and some bacteria, don’t have chlorophyll in their cell bodies, thus unable to make nutrition by their own. They get nourishment by many ways including Parasitic activity with their host as they can parasites human and other plants, Symbiosis or mutualistics association with plants where they attached with the roots of higher plants help the absorption of water and minerals, protect the roots against the attacks of other parasitic fungi and in turn get nutrition from the plants. Some fungi are Saprophytes in nature and get feed from dead organic material of plants. The digestion mechanism of fungi is distinguish in the sense that they excrete enzymes (Exo-enzymes) outside their body to get the plant debris digest first and then absorb nutrition from it (Exo-digestion).

6. They dominate the field of Medicine

Fungi Chinese Medicine

Fungi are used in the field of medicine from about 4500 years. Chinese herbalists were the first who used the brackets fungi in the medicine to promote long live.  Today we get a number of antibiotics from fungi, which helps us to kill bacteria and defended infection. Few of these precious drugs are Penicillin, Griseofulvin, Cephalosporin etc. Recent studies and researches on fungi shows that they have inhibitory effects against caners cells and viruses.

7. But They also Cause Diseases

Athlete's Foot

There is over 1.5 to 5 million species of fungi but only 5% of which are classified. Most of them are harmless to human and some even useful but few of them causes diseases or infections (called Mycosis) in human. Athletes Foot, Oral Thrush, Vaginal Thrush, and Ring worm infection of skin are some common examples of disease caused by fungi. Fungi also cause harm to the industry of silk as they cause killing of silkworms early 1800s in Europe (this, also, is the first ever evidence of fungal disease).

8. Fungi – A handy Tool for Researchers

Morelasci

Fungi play a wide role in research. Saccharomyces cerevisiae, (Baker’s yeast), a kind of unicellular fungi is the first organism (and Eukaryotic cell) which have their genome decoded. They also play role in researches in the field of Medicine as their cells are somewhat similar to human cells (Both are eukaryotes)

 9. We Eat and Drink Fungi almost daily, but how?

Fungi used in Baking industeries

Fungi are used widely in food and beverage industries. We consume the products obtained from fungi on daily basis. Citric acid used in soft drinks, artificial juices and candies are actually produced by fungi as a result of fermentation in food industries. They also used in the production of beers, spirits and wines etc. Other than beverages, fungi have majored role in baked products such as Breads, Pizza and cheeses. Soon fungi will used in industries to produce Protein “Fungal Protein” as an alternative to meat.

10. We inhale them as well

Fungi Live with us

The air we breathe in contain more than 10,000 fungal spores per cubic meter, they grow easily in our housed mainly in basements and bathrooms where fungi emitted toxic gases and can cause mold allergies. The gases emitted by fungi are among the causes of “sick building syndrome”.

 

Read More »

Top 10 interesting Facts about Viruses

Top 10 interesting Facts about Viruses

1.  Virus – A Nano technology

Nano Virus

Viruses are the example of nanotechnology by nature. Their size ranges between 20 nanometers (0.0002 mm) to 400 nanometers (0.0004 mm). The smaller known virus till to date is Circovirus (usually affect animal causing PCVD) and the biggest one is mimivirus (the causative agent of some form of Viral Pneumonia) which is even bigger than some smaller bacteria. There are even bigger virus discover called mamaviru.

[AdSense-A] 2.  Viral Chain – Double than the Diameter of Milky Way

Virus and Milky way
There are millions of viruses in a single drop of water, account for 1031 total viruses on the Earth. If calculated by the total number and the average size of virus (200 nanometers) all of them (lined up end to end) will stretch 108 Light years into space (2 times more than the diameter of Milky Way).

3.  Living or Dead

Virus, The Border Line between Living and non-livingViruses are neither living nor dead entity. They are among the border line of Live and dead. They don’t have their own food metabolism mechanism; they can’t produce energy by their own. But due to ability to replicate (reproduce) themselves Viruses, by some scientist, considered as living thing. Although they can’t reproduce outside the host cell

[AdSense-A]

4.  Temperature Does matter for Virus

Effect of Temperature on Virus
On average, viruses live on 37 0C for seconds, for minutes on 20 0C, for hour on 10 0C for days on 0 0C and for years on temperature in minus. The hotter temperature of your body during viral infection helps immune system to get rid of viruses. On the other hand, in cold weather, you have more chances to get flu. There are still many ancient viruses living in sub freezing temperature of Antarctica.

5.  Wide Range Of Host

Host range of virus
Viruses are not only the worst enemy of human; they can infect every living organism under the Sun. The virus nature of more rapid genetic diversion enables them to parasitize all groups of Living organisms. Their range of hosts not only limited to men but include animal, plants, insects, Bacteria (infected by Bacteriophages), fungi, protozoa, amoebae their own relatives, yes there are viruses (viriophage) which infect other viruses.

6.  First written Proof of Viral Disease

Person with Poliomyelitis in Ancient drwaings
The first written evidence of a viral infection is dated back to ancient Egypt (3700 B.C), which shows a patient with typical clinical features of poliomyelitis. The first ever discovered virus is Tobacco Mosaic Virus (TMV) discovered by a Russian Microbiologist, Dmitry Ivanovsky in 1892. The first discovered virus causing disease in Human is Yellow Fever virus, discovered by Walter Reed in 1901. Structure of Virus was not been observed until the invention of Electron Microscope in 1931. Ernst Ruska and Max Knoll (both are Germen Engineers) were the first who observe Virus under Electron Microscope.

7.  DNA Vs. RNA Virus

Types Of Virus (RNA virus, DNA virus)
On the basis of genetic material (Ribonucleic acid), Viruses are classifying as either DNA (Double Strand Nucleic Acid) or RNA (Single Strand Nucleic Acid) viruses. Among these types, DNA viruses are stable and while replicating, they make good copies of their genetic material. This can be useful to make vaccines against them. On other hand, RNA viruses are less stable, their genetic material changes quickly due to which it’s hard to make vaccine against them or get vaccinated against the same viral infection repeatedly. (Can you guess HIV belongs to which class?)

8.  Antiviral Drugs – Pseudo Genetic Codes

Antiviral Drugs, Pseudo Genetic Code
Antiviral drugs (such as Acyclovir) are Pseudo (fake) genetic material which is perceived and adopted by viruses as their own replicated genetic martial (RNA or DNA) in cell, using which render the viruses harmless.

9.  Social History of Virus

Traces of Virus found in Ancient human Remains
Traces of Viruses found in ancient human skeleton are used by scientist as a tool or evidence to uncover pre-historic migration by human being. Scientists are tracing prehistoric migration by viruses they carry with themselves.

10.  Friendly Virus

Gene Therapy through Virus
Despite all the harmful effects of virus, there is a useful Medical use of Viruses. They are being used in gene therapy as gene delivery systems for the treatment of various inherited and acquired diseases.
Viruses are the enemy of our enemies (bacteria, Fungi, Protozoa), they helping us by killing them as well.

Read More »

Scroll To Top