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Archive for November, 2013

Pocket Yoga

yoga

Pocket Yoga – Practice Builder (4.5 stars with 376 Ratings) 
Universal App

$4.99

Free Offer Ended. This app was free on November 27, 2013, but the offer has expired. Follow us on Twitter or Subscribe byemail or RSS feed to get daily App Gone Free notifications so you won’t miss it next time. The following impression was made during the promotional period.

 

Do you need a little help creating your own yoga session?

Pocket Yoga- Practice Builder allows you to create custom yoga practices. Simply select your desired poses, adjust their order and duration, add music and tempo, and then just listen to the voice guided instructions. There are 175 poses for you to add to your personalized yoga session. Play your session on the big screen with Apple TV or TV out cables. Share your practice with friends via email, Airdrop or PDF. If you are a regular yoga practitioner, be sure to grab this useful app.

App Screenshots

via Pocket Yoga – Practice Builder: Create Your Custom Yoga Routine on your iPhone or iPad | App Saga.

Squash and Broccoli Rabe Lasagna

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INGREDIENTS

FILLING

2 2-lb. butternut squash, peeled, halved, seeded, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices

3 tablespoons olive oil plus more t

Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper

2 pounds broccoli rabe (rapini), tough stems removed

Crushed red pepper flakes

1 pound fresh mozzarella, coarsely grated

1 pound whole-milk ricotta

1 cup finely grated Parmesan

1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest

2 teaspoons minced fresh sage

1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary

BÉCHAMEL AND ASSEMBLY

1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter

1/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour

5 cups (or more) half-and-half

1/8 teaspoon (or more) freshly grated nutmeg

1 bay leaf

Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper

1 pound lasagna noodles

3/4 cup finely grated Parmesan

 

PREPARATION

FILLING

Preheat oven to 400°. Place squash and 3 tablespoons oil in a large bowl; season generously with salt and pepper and toss to evenly coat squash. Transfer to 2 rimmed baking sheets, spreading out in a single layer, overlapping slightly. Roast until tender but not mushy, about 15 minutes. Let cool.

Quickly blanch broccoli rabe in a large pot of boiling salted water just until it wilts, 1–2 minutes. Drain; briefly cool under running water. Squeeze out excess water; coarsely chop and transfer to a large bowl. Season with salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes; drizzle with oil and toss to coat.

Mix mozzarella and next 5 ingredients in a large bowl; season with salt and pepper. DO AHEAD Squash, broccoli rabe, and cheese mixture can be made 1 day ahead. Cover separately and chill.

BÉCHAMEL AND ASSEMBLY

Melt butter in a large heavy saucepan over medium heat. Add flour; stir until slightly thickened (do not allow mixture to turn brown), 2–3 minutes. Increase heat slightly; slowly whisk in 5 cups half-and-half, 1/2-cupful at a time, allowing béchamel to thicken between additions (adding half-and-half gradually will help to prevent lumps from forming). Add 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg and bay leaf.

Reduce heat to low and cook, thinning with more half-and-half if too thick, until sauce is a milk shake–like consistency, about 10 minutes longer. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a medium metal bowl. Set bowl over a large saucepan of gently simmering water. Cover and keep warm.

Cook lasagna noodles in a pot of well-salted boiling water until still quite al dente, 8–9 minutes. Transfer immediately to a large bowl of ice water to cool. Drain; spread out noodles on a kitchen towel or baking sheets lined with parchment paper, placing a kitchen towel or parchment between layers.

Ladle about 1/4 cup béchamel into a 13x9x2-inch baking dish; spread evenly over bottom. Line dish with a single layer of noodles, cutting as needed to fit (use large scraps in subsequent layers). Layer 1/3 of squash over. Scatter 1/3 of broccoli rabe over. Dollop 1/3 of ricotta mixture randomly over greens. Drizzle 1/2 cup béchamel evenly over ricotta mixture. Repeat process 2 more times for a Total of 3 layers, finishing with a layer of noodles. Spread remaining béchamel over; top with Parmesan. DO AHEAD Lasagna can be assembled 1 day ahead. Cover and chill. Return to room temperature before continuing.

Preheat oven to 375°. Bake lasagna uncovered until bubbly and starting to brown, about 45 minutes. Turn oven to broil. Cook until browned and golden, 4–7 minutes. Let rest for 20–30 minutes before serving.

via Squash and Broccoli Rabe Lasagna – Bon Appétit.

Salt in medicines ‘poses a health risk’

Effervescent tablet
Soluble painkillers used by millions of people in Britain could pose a health risk because they are high in salt, UK researchers are warning.

Some formulations taken at maximum dose tip users over the recommended daily sodium intake for an adult, with potentially dangerous consequences, the study authors say.

Their work in the BMJ looks at the outcomes for 1.2 million UK patients.

It found a link between effervescent tablets and heart attacks and stroke.

Without clear labelling on these products, it is impossible to know how much additional sodium you would be eating”

Prof Gareth BeeversBlood Pressure UK

All medicines that contain at least 1mmol (or 23mg) of sodium – a component of salt – in each dose are required to declare on their labelling that the product contains sodium.

The accompanying patient information leaflet provides information on the quantity of sodium and includes a warning to patients on a low-sodium diet to take the amount of sodium in the medicine into account.

Compared with patients taking the same drugs without salt, those who regularly took effervescent or soluble medications increased their risk of having a heart attack, stroke or dying from a vascular cause by a fifth

They were also seven times more likely to develop high blood pressure or hypertension, which the researchers say is at the root of the problem.

Lead researcher Dr Jacob George, from Dundee University, said: “We know that high salt causes hypertension and that hypertension leads to stroke.”

The British Heart Foundation said it was important to remember that the research applied to people who were taking these medicines every day – it did not mean that occasional use could damage your heart health.

Hidden salt

Effervescent medicines contain a substance called bicarbonate, which helps them fizz and dissolve, and this is often combined with sodium.

The study looked at 24 different prescribed effervescent medicines, including common painkillers such as paracetamol and aspirin, as well as supplements.

But Dr George said many more people bought these types of treatment from chemists, without a prescription.

He said that people needed to be aware of the risks and drug manufacturers should look at cutting the salt content of their products.

In the study, sodium levels in tablets ranged from as low as 3mmol to as high as 18mmol – approximately a fifth of a teaspoon.

The recommended sodium intake for an adult in the UK is 104mmol per day.

A person who takes the maximum daily dose of eight tablets of soluble paracetamol, for example, would ingest 148.8mmol of sodium, which exceeds their daily salt allowance.

If you then took in to account the dietary salt a person was likely to get from the food that they ate, their overall salt intake could be dangerously high, said Dr George.

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) said it kept a close check on the safety of all licensed medicines.

“We will carefully review the findings of this new research,” said a spokeswoman.

“We recommend that people with questions about their salt intake should read the patient information leaflet and speak to their GP,” the MHRA said.

But Prof Gareth Beevers, of Blood Pressure UK, said many consumers would be unaware of the risks.

“It is extraordinary to think that sodium has been hiding in our medicines all this time.

“Without clear labelling on these products, it is impossible to know how much additional sodium you would be eating, so it is shocking to find you could be having more than your daily maximum from medicines alone.

“Eating too much sodium – in any form – puts up our blood pressure, which puts you at increased risk of strokes and heart attacks, the biggest killers in the world.”

via BBC News – Salt in medicines ‘poses a health risk’.

Morning-after contraceptive pill ‘fails in obese’

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A French pharmaceutical company has warned a morning-after contraceptive pill may be ineffective in heavier women, following a Scottish study.

Norlevo, made by HRA Pharma, was less effective in women over 11st 3lb (75kg) and ineffective in women over 12st 8lb (80kg), the study suggested.

The US is reviewing guidance as the active ingredient in Norlevo is used in other brands of morning-after pill.

It is thought the drug is absorbed by fat, lowering the dose in the blood.

The study by the University of Edinburgh in 2011 investigated Norlevo’s active ingredient, levonorgestrel.

It indicated obese women taking the emergency contraceptive were four times more likely to become pregnant than women taking the drug who were a normal weight.

The report’s authors recommended other emergency contraceptives were used in overweight and obese women, such as devices that could be implanted into the womb.

Frederique Welgryn, HRA Pharma’s head of women’s health, said the results were “surprising” and had led to “a lot of discussions” about the effectiveness of levonorgestrel.

The labelling on Norlevo is expected to be changed in 2014.

The development has raised concerns about other morning-after pills.

The US regulator, the Food and Drug Administration, said it was “currently reviewing the available and related scientific information on this issue “.

via BBC News – Morning-after contraceptive pill ‘fails in obese’.

Body piercing controls wheelchair

Tongue piercing
The magnetic tongue piercing allows student, Xueliang Huo, to control a computer and a wheelchair

Body piercings have been used to control wheelchairs and computers in a move scientists believe could transform the way people interact with the world after paralysis.

The movement of a tiny magnet in a tongue piercing is detected by sensors and converted into commands, which can control a range of devices.

The US team said it was harnessing the tongue’s “amazing” deftness.

The development is reported in the journal Science Translational Medicine.

The team at the Georgia Institute of Technology made the unlikely leap from body art to wheelchairs because the tongue is so spectacularly supple.

A large section of the brain is dedicated to controlling the tongue because of its role in speech. It is also unaffected by spinal cord injuries that can render the rest of the body paralysed, tetraplegic, as it has its own hotline to the brain.

“We are tapping in to the inherent capabilities of the tongue, it is such an amazing part of the body,” Dr Maysam Ghovanloo told the BBC.

A lentil-sized piercing in the tongue produces a magnetic field, which changes as the tongue moves. Sensors on the cheeks can then detect the precise position of the piercing.

In the trial, on 23 able-bodied people and 11 with tetraplegia, six positions in the mouth were programmed to control a wheelchair or a computer such as touching the left cheek to turn the chair to the left.

 Watch the wheelchair controlled by a pierced tongue courtesy of Dr Maysam Ghovanloo

On average, people with tetraplegia were able to perform tasks three times as fast and with the same level of accuracy as with the other technologies available.

The researchers believe they will be able to have a command for every tooth in the mouth and that by using combinations of tongue positions would be able to develop an “unlimited” number of instructions.

These could dial a phone, change the channel on the television or even type.

The tongue is capable of the most exquisite commands through the act of speech so why not use that range of motion to command assistive devices ”

Dr Mark BaconSpinal Research

Dr Ghovanloo said: “People will be able to do more and do more things more effectively.”

He said patients were “all very cool with it” but some older people did not take part in the trial due to tongue piercing reticence.

At the moment the device is limited to university laboratories. The team is trying to fit the sensors into a dental brace to make it more stable on the road, get it approved by the US regulators and come up with a way of getting the expensive kit into the hands of patients.

Dr Mark Bacon, the director of research at the charity Spinal Research, said the ultimate goal remained regenerating the spinal cord but living aids were “needed now”.

He told the BBC: “While this may only be beneficial to those with the profoundest motor dysfunction, being able to capture the tongue’s complex range of motion to command other assistive devices seems a valuable avenue to explore.

“After all the tongue is capable of the most exquisite commands through the act of speech so why not use that range of motion to command assistive devices more discretely.

“We should bear in mind that the tongue does other things and a smooth and safeguarded mechanism to ensure against potentially dangerous engagement whilst eating, speaking or even swallowing may not be trivial.”

via BBC News – Body piercing controls wheelchair.

Dengue fever risk to World Cup fans

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Dengue fever is spread by mosquitoes

Football fans going to the World Cup in Brazil should be aware of the risk of dengue fever, a UK expert warns.

The tropical disease, spread by mosquito bites, could be a problem in three of the 12 host cities next summer, says Prof Simon Hay, of Oxford University.

There are no vaccines or drugs against dengue, but avoiding mosquito bites is the best precaution, he says.

Dengue can cause fever and in severe cases may need hospital treatment.


Dengue fever

  • Dengue is a common viral infection spread by mosquitoes
  • It is widespread in tropical and sub-tropical regions
  • Symptoms of dengue include: fever, headache, pain behind the eyes, bone, muscle and joint pain
  • Dengue is spread by infected Aedes aegyptimosquitoes

Source: NHS Choices

The infection is spread by a type of mosquito that is a particular problem in towns and cities.

Prof Hay’s team studied maps of the distribution of dengue in Brazil and its seasonal variation at sites where the tournament is being staged.

They found dengue risk will be close to its peak when matches are played in three of the host cities in the north-east of the country:

  • Fortaleza
  • Natal
  • Salvador

“Dengue fever could be a significant problem in some of the tournament locations, and preventative measures are needed,” Prof Hay writes in the journal Nature.

“Fifa, the Brazilian authorities and the World Cup sponsors must use their influence and experience to communicate the risk.”

Fans will discover which matches will be played where when the draw for the group stages of the World Cup takes place on 6 December.

Map
The locations of the cities of the 12 stadiums in Brazil selected to host World Cup football games. The scale moves from green (zero probability of occurrence) to red (100% probability of occurrence).

“I don’t want to dissuade anyone from going to the World Cup, nor to single out Brazil, which is one of the more than 100 countries battling dengue worldwide,” says Prof Hay.

“My aim is to inform unwary spectators about the risk and how they can protect themselves.”

There are no vaccines or drugs against dengue, but avoiding mosquito bites is the best precaution, he says.

Measures include:

  • choosing accommodation with screened windows and doors, and air conditioning
  • using insecticides indoors
  • wearing clothing that covers the arms and legs, especially during early morning and late afternoon, when mosquitoes tend to bite
  • applying insect repellent to clothing and exposed skin

Prof Hay says control measures are needed to reduce the number of mosquitoes around the northern stadiums and to interrupt the mosquito’s breeding cycle.

Commenting on the viewpoint article, Martin Hibberd, professor of emerging infectious diseases at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, said it was a welcome reminder of the risks of dengue.

“Brazil is doing well to improve its health profile,” he added.

“The anti-dengue team will be out looking for the breeding site of the mosquitoes and trying to reduce the number.”

via BBC News – Dengue fever risk to World Cup fans.

荷爾蒙減肥有效?踢爆NG減肥法

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源於印度古修行的呼吸法,宣稱人可以不吃東西就存活,變相成為一種減肥方法。

說到減肥方法百百種,綜觀整個2013年也有不少紅極一時,甚至現在仍有人在仿效的減肥方法,尤其是有名人加持、瘦身成功的案例時,更加速一般民眾群起效尤的情況;但是,英國飲食協會整理出在2013年度期間,幾種不正確又可能損害健康的減肥法。

1.【荷爾蒙減肥法】(Biotyping)

這個名詞原本用於化學用途,後來成為一種新穎飲食方式,宣稱可以有效消除壓力、減少老化、並且增加潛在能量。利用找出身體最多與最少的荷爾蒙所在,分為雄激素、胰島素、雌激素、皮質醇、生長激素、甲狀腺激素6種不同類型的族群,並有不同的改善身材方式。

例如胰島素類型的人,通常脂肪是分佈在肩胛骨和臀部的區域,這類型的人可以多吃魚油、高蛋白質的食物,並減少碳水化合物的攝取。這種依照體內荷爾蒙變化來調整飲食的減肥方式,國外歌手喬治男孩(Boy George)就是靠這種方式瘦身成功。

不過這種減肥法會仰賴額外補充營養補給品來增加營養,長期下來對於身體恐怕也有不少副作用。美國食品藥物管理局FDA也曾發布警告,表示靠荷爾蒙方式減重,有可能對身體產生不良影響。

歌手喬治男孩表示自己就是靠荷爾蒙減肥法瘦身。(圖片/取材自英國《電訊報》)

歌手喬治男孩表示自己就是靠荷爾蒙減肥法瘦身。(圖片/取材自英國《電訊報》)

 

2.【吸食空氣減肥法】(Breatharian Diet)

此種減肥法歌壇天后瑪丹娜(Madonna)也曾實行過類似的減肥法,源自於印度古老的修行方式,主張不吃固體食物、而以流質的飲料維生,相信人可以依靠呼吸就可以生存,可以先從當素食者、只吃水果、只喝液體類,到最後什麼物質都不用。

不過也曾有報導指出,不少民眾因為信奉這套理論,而餓死的案例。而這樣的修行方式衍伸到了想減肥的人身上,就變成極端的減肥方式,認為不用吸收熱量就可以瘦身還可以存活。

然而身體長時間沒有進食,首先會先分解體內的葡萄糖,然後蛋白質、脂肪,肝臟會產生脂肪酸代謝產物「酮酸」,對身體不利,接著身體會進入脫水階段,產生更多致命風險,難以存活。(待續)

via 荷爾蒙減肥有效?踢爆NG減肥法 | 20131128 | 華人健康網.

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