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Why everyone sleep-Scientists

By News desk

Why do humans sleep? A new study by scientists at the Bar-Ilan University in Ramat-Gan, Israel, has unearthed a key factor that may lie at the center of sleep’s indispensability: its restorative effect on individual brain cells.

The team, which Prof. Lior Appelbaum led, reports its new findings in a study paper that appears in the journal Nature Communications.

In this study, the investigators turned to zebrafish, which scientists often use in research because they are surprisingly similar to humans. In fact, approximately 70 percent of human genes also occur in this freshwater species.

Using 3D time-lapse imaging, the scientists looked at the effects of sleep on a microscale and observed how it affected single neurons, or brain cells.

The high-resolution technology allowed Applebaum and team to follow the movement of DNA and proteins within brain cells.

They found that during sleep, individual neurons were able to perform maintenance work on the nucleus, the central element of each cell, which encloses most of that cell’s genetic material.

“Despite the risk of reduced awareness to the environment, animals — ranging from jellyfish to zebrafish to humans — have to sleep to allow their neurons to perform efficient DNA maintenance, and this is possibly the reason why sleep has evolved and is so conserved in the animal kingdom,” Applebaum said.

When the nucleus begins to deteriorate, the DNA information it contains also becomes damaged, and this can lead to aging, disease, and poor overall functioning in an organ or tissue.

During sleep, the researchers explain, the neurons have an opportunity to recover from the stress they accumulated during the day and “fix” any damage they may have sustained.

The scientists note that during wakefulness, levels of chromosome dynamics are lower than during sleep, meaning that brain cells are unable to perform proper DNA maintenance. Prof. Applebaum likens this situation to having “potholes in the road.”

“Roads accumulate wear and tear, especially during daytime rush hours, and it is most convenient and efficient to fix them at night, when there is light traffic,” he explains.

Since this process is so vital to ensuring that the brain stays healthy, this can explain why animals — humans included — are willing to invest so much time in sleep, despite the risks it may expose them to in nature.

“We’ve found a causal link between sleep, chromosome dynamics, neuronal activity, and DNA damage and repair with direct physiological relevance to the entire organism,” explains Prof. Appelbaum.

“Sleep,” he adds, “gives an opportunity to reduce DNA damage accumulated in the brain during wakefulness.”

Green tea linked with Type 2 Diabetes

By News desk

A recent international study found that drinking green tea was associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes in Chinese adults.

A total of 119,373 participants from the Shanghai Women’s Health Study (SWHS) and Shanghai Men’s Health Study (SMHS) were included in the study, according to a report by Xinhua.

The SWHS and SMHS are two large population-based studies initiated in 1996. Data from the studies have been used to investigate genetic and other biomarkers as well as lifestyle risk factors for cancers and other chronic diseases.

In the new study, none of the participants had diabetes when they were enrolled. Details of tea drinking, including types and amounts, were collected in the survey. Researchers from China’s Fudan University, Vanderbilt University in the United States and other research institutions reported that both female and male participants in the study have an increased risk of type 2 diabetes if they drink more green tea.

They noted that this positive and dose-response association between green tea intake and risk of type 2 diabetes did not vary by obesity or smoking.

The findings have been reported in the International Journal of Epidemiology.

The researchers called for further studies on the mechanisms underlying the association, suggesting that pesticide residue in tea leaves could play a possible role.

Green tea is a popular beverage consumed worldwide. In recent years, it has gained popularity as a health drink. But researchers have had inconsistent findings on the association between green tea drinking and risk of type 2 diabetes.

A Japanese study published on the Annals of Internal Medicine in 2006 said habitual green tea drinkers who drank at least six cups per day had a 33 percent lower risk for type 2 diabetes than those who drank one cup or less per week.

Study in the Republic of Korea published in the journal of BioFactors in 2007 said people with diabetes should drink less green tea as animal studies showed that high green tea intake may increase blood sugar levels in diabetic rats.

How to have a healthy vagina

By Abimbola Adebayo

Taking care of the female part is as important as wearing the latest shoes or cloth in vogue. But, most women believed that they know all that is to be known about taking care of the vagina. However, it has been discovered that most women are wrong about this. All they know about of taking care of the vagina, is washing with soap and water which in most cases causes more harm than good. Do they even know about taking an annual exam to check their status?

Here are seven things to do to maintain a healthy vagina…

Eat Yogurt

Natural Yogurt with live culture help boost the good bacteria in the vagina. According to research, yogurt help prevent vaginal problems like yeast infections. Don’t buy artificially sweetened yogurt because this can make you more prone to more vagina infections.

Go for examination

Though, a new research says it is not necessary to go for annual pelvic check if you are symptoms free. But, if you suspect something is wrong down there, it is better to see the doctor. It could be STDs or yeast infection.

Stop Douching

‘’Think you need some assistance keeping things all clear down there? You don’t. The vagina actually cleans itself ‘’ says Dena Harris, M.D., a clinical assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at New York University. Using in intravaginal hygiene products and medicated soaps can put you at risk of infections, pelvic inpelvic inflammatory disease, and STDs.

Be careful while cycling

It is good to maintain a healthy lifestyle. But women should be more careful when cycling because you can cause some damages to your vagina. Spending long hours or cycling frequently can cause numbness, pain and tingling to the genita. To be safe, wear a padded short while cycling.

Approach antibiotics with cautions

Another threat to your nether region’s good bacteria are antibiotics. Those pills can kill off some of that wonderful lactobacilli that keep your vagina healthy, says experts Obviously, if you have to take an antibiotic to fight infection, you shouldn’t pass up the prescription, just load up on pro-biotic Greek yogurt to reduce the damage

Be careful of that soap

Though, using scented soap can make the vagina smell nice but it doesn’t keep your vagina healthy in anyway. Soap especially medicated soap can dry up the skin around the vulva. To avoid this, rinse with warm water and if you must use soap, use mild unscented soap.

Wear cotton underwear

When it comes to your underwear selection, your vagina has a preference: cotton. That’s why most underwear comes with a thin strip of cotton fabric in the crotch. Since it breathes and absorbs moisture, it’s the ideal way to clothe your lady parts. says Mary Jane Minkin, M.D., a clinical professor of obstetrics, gynecology, and reproductive sciences at Yale University. And when you’re laying around the house, feel free to go without your undies, so you can let things air out.