Monday, September 27, 2010

What is Psoriasis

What is psoriasis
Psoriasis is an inflammatory skin condition which is not contagious. There are five different types of psoriasis, of which by far the most common is plaque psoriasis which is a form that is suffered by approximately 80% of psoriasis sufferers. This particular form of psoriasis (also known as ‘psoriasis vulgaris’, with the latter word meaning common) usually appears as reddish patches of raised skin which are often covered in a silvery-white scale. These skin patches, otherwise known as plaques (hence the condition name) or lesions are most commonly found on the elbows and knees, the scalp or sometimes in the lower back area of the sufferer.
Having said this, they are not restricted to these particular areas of the body and can appear anywhere on the head, torso or limbs.
The other less common types of psoriasis are:
Guttate psoriasis which is characterized by small red spots on the skin. This particular form of psoriasis most commonly develops in children or teenagers who have a history of streptococcal infections;
Erythrodermic psoriasis where the patient suffers widespread redness, severe itching and often pain. This is the least common type of psoriasis which is suffered by only 1% to 2% of people who have psoriasis, which is fortunate, because this particular type of psoriasis can in the most extreme cases be life-threatening. This is because in the most severe cases, large sections of skin are shed, meaning that there are areas of exposed, unprotected flesh which could be prone to infections (it is often compared to those who have suffered very bad burns);
Inverse psoriasis is where the sufferer is likely to find small, smooth red lesions forming in bodily skin folds where warm, moist conditions (such as in the armpits, genital area etc) encourage smooth, non-scaly but nevertheless painful to the touch plaques and
Pustular psoriasis which is characterized by patches of red skin at the centre of which there are likely to be white pustules. This type of psoriasis occurs in less than 5% of sufferers, and is usually seen only in adults. Irrespective of the particular type of psoriasis that an individual is suffering from, it usually causes at least a degree discomfort which in some cases can become mild to severe pain. For psoriasis sufferers, it is a fact of their life that their skin is almost always itchy, and that it can often crack and bleed as well. In the most severe cases, the pain suffered by someone who has psoriasis can be significant enough to prevent them handling every day tasks whilst also making settled sleep extremely difficult as well. In medical terms, the treatment that medical professionals and other doctors would recommend for psoriasis will to a very large extent depend upon the severity of the condition being suffered by the individual seeking advice. Some dermatologists would classify psoriasis in three different categories, being mild, moderate and severe with the definition of each of these categories depending on the percentage of the patient’s body that is covered with psoriasis lesions. By these standards, anyone who has lesions cover between 5% and 10% of their body would fall into the mild category, 10% to 20% would be moderate and anyone who has more than 20% of their body covered in psoriasis lesions would fall into the severe category. It has already been suggested that up to 20% of the population of the USA (and by extension of the rest of the Western world) may suffer psoriasis, with the vast majority falling into the mild or even very mild category. For many of these people, their condition is nothing more than a mild annoyance with moderate skin lesions and minor itching, often on a temporary basis. At the other end of the scale, there are some unfortunates whose condition is so severe that they develop lesions all over their body and have to be hospitalized so that the condition can be treated. For these people, their psoriasis is likely to be extremely painful and in addition, it can also be disfiguring and even potentially disabling. And unfortunately, because psoriasis is a chronic condition, meaning that it is one that is a lifelong thing, there can be no total relief for any sufferer. Psoriasis is a condition that can apparently clear up and then return (often with a vengeance) many times throughout life, and because there is no recognized cure for the condition, this is a fact that every psoriasis sufferer has to get used to and live with.

Psoriasis Causes
As with a surprising number of medical conditions, the exact causes of psoriasis have not as yet been established beyond all doubt. But, whilst the traditional view of psoriasis was that it is a condition of the epidermis, the uppermost layer of the skin, research over the past few years has begun to indicate otherwise. This research has indicated that far from being a condition that is only related to the epidermis, the causes of psoriasis go much deeper than this. In fact, this research indicates that psoriasis is a condition that is caused by malfunctions in the sufferer’s immune system when certain immune cells are activated and subsequently become overactive. In any individual who has a perfectly normally functioning immune system, white blood cells or T-cells produce antibodies that are designed to repel bacteria and viruses. However, it is now believed that in the case of a psoriasis sufferer, these cells begin to fight an imaginary infection or try to heal a wound that doesn’t exist by creating a surfeit of new skin cells to repel the imaginary invader or to repair the nonexistent damage. This in turn causes the plaques or skin lesions that are endemic to plaque psoriasis to appear. Under normal circumstances, the life cycle of the average skin cell for someone who is totally healthy is around about 28 days, but it is believed that in psoriasis sufferers, their immune system is creating far too many cells. Moreover, because these cells are being produced so quickly, they mature in as little as three to six days before moving to the surface of the skin. Consequently, because these cells are not dying quickly enough, they build up on the surface of the skin, layer upon layer, and thus the psoriatic plaques are formed. Because of this research, we now have what is believed to be a reasonably accurate idea of what causes psoriasis. What we do not know however is exactly why some individuals suffer from psoriasis whereas others do not. There are on the other hand some generally accepted factors that make some individuals more likely to suffer psoriasis than others.

How you get psoriasis
Research indicates that some 30% of people who develop psoriasis have a family history of the condition, but it is also true that many parents who suffer from psoriasis will have the children who have no problems of their own. On the other hand, there will be people who develop psoriasis who have no family history of the condition, so to suggest that psoriasis is hereditary could be a little misleading.
It is however true that researchers have established that there are certain genetic combinations and/or mutations that seem to make anyone who has them predisposed to suffering from psoriasis. At the present time, researchers believe that there are nine different genetic mutations that might play a part in making certain people predisposed to suffering from psoriasis. However, there is one particular mutation of chromosome-6 known as PSORS-1 (for psoriasis susceptibility 1) which appears likely to be the particular mutation that plays the biggest role in deciding who is likely to become a psoriasis sufferer, and who is not. According to a study published in the American Journal of Human Genetics in 2006, research has established that the role of this particular genetic mutation was seen in more than 2700 psoriasis sufferers drawn from nearly 680 families in which one or both parents were psoriasis sufferers. It is now generally agreed within the research and scientific community that this particular mutation causes the T-cells to behave differently, hence the connection with psoriasis. But it is also the fact that this particular genetic mutation does not necessarily mean that an individual is certain to become a psoriasis sufferer. Indeed, the same research study which was carried out by James T. Elder, MD, PhD suggests that for every individual with the PSORS-1 gene that develops psoriasis, there will be 10 other individuals carrying exactly the same gene who do not develop the condition. Moreover, it should also be noted that many of the same mutations that are believed to make an individual predisposed to psoriasis can also have a connection with other immune mediated conditions such as type 1 diabetes or rheumatoid arthritis as well. It therefore follows that whilst some people who have a particular genetic mutation might be more prone to psoriasis, it is possible that instead of psoriasis, they may suffer from diabetes or rheumatoid arthritis. In fact, whilst the risk of developing psoriasis is increased if one or both parents are also suffererlets, the risks of developing other immune mediated conditions especially Crohn’s disease or diabetes are both increased in the same situation. From all this, it might be natural to assume that having some family history of psoriasis is likely to mean that you will develop psoriasis yourself, but in many cases, this simply does not happen. Share Health|Fitness
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Adult Dyslexia

Adult Dyslexia has been described as a difficulty in processing information which may be linked to deficiencies in short-term memory and visual coordination. It is an inherent weakness in short-term memory, that is either auditory or visual, which can make it extremely difficult for that person to learn and understand the relation between symbols and spoken sounds. This difficulty allows the person to be unable to correctly speak the correct flow of auditory sounds needed to make a word or sentence sound proper. The range and severity of the problem of adult dyslexia varies widely between dyslexic people. The main areas of difficulty that occur most often are reading, writing, spelling, numeric, personal organization and time-keeping. However, the degree to which individuals may be affected ranges from mild spelling difficulties to severe organizational problems or complete illiteracy. In all reality there really is no such thing as a typical case of dyslexia. In some cases people with dyslexia are unaware that they suffer from such a problem whereas others haven't had a confirmed diagnosis until adulthood. Adult dyslexia is difficult to recognize and identify as it's a problem that many people either don't realize they have or they try to hide it. Simple tasks that a person with dyslexia may try to perform may become increasingly more difficult, such as taking down a message, which can lead to frustration and anxiety.

Causes of Dyslexia

Most research has concentrated on seeking to explain the causes of dyslexia, however this has proved to be somewhat unfruitful. Neurological research suggests that there may be some abnormality in the function of the left side of the brain which controls the speech system, whereas cognitive research in recent years has increasingly focused on problems of phonological awareness (the awareness of the speech sounds within words) and there has been speculation that these problems may be associated with a specific area of the abnormality in the brain that prevents a person from correctly recognizing the right speech pattern. Many people that aren't dyslexic can also have moments where they switch sounds out of their correct pattern which suggests to researches that perhaps it's something that can be corrected in everyone. Whatever the cause may be, there is absolutely no doubt that dyslexia leads to many literacy problems within individuals and an insensitivity to sounds within a word, which in time will lead to problems with reading and reading comprehension. We also know that the causes of dyslexia can greatly vary from person to person which can make treatment a bit more difficult. Estimates of the inclusion of dyslexia vary immensely – from 4-10% of the population. It is believed to be four times more prevalent in males than females. Statistics in this area have been difficult to gather with great accuracy due to people not willing to admit to having a dyslexic problem.

Symptoms Of Dyslexia
Dyslexia can present itself in many,many ways and it's more than likely that all the following symptoms will not present themselves within one individual. However use this to see what ones may apply.
- A difference between academic achievement and real-life performance in practical problem-solving and verbal skills.
- Taking an inordinate amount of time to reading a book and finishing it.
- Missing endings of words in reading and spelling.
- Poor presentation of written work, such as poor spelling and punctuation.
- Not being able to think what to write.
- Reluctance to write things down, such as messages.
- Confusing telephone messages.
- Difficulty with note-taking.
- Difficulty in following what others are saying.
- Difficulty with sequences or verbal patterns.
- Reversing figures or letters or leaving words out.
- Problems with time management.
- Trouble with remembering tables.
- Difficulty with mental math.
Again all of these symptoms will not present themselves typically within one individual. However after looking over these symptoms and if you saw that a number of them applied to you then please think about speaking with your doctor on getting a possible diagnosis. Share Health|Fitness
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Saturday, September 25, 2010

Gestational diabetes

Gestational diabetes is linked to serotonin - a chemical produced by the body - and influenced by the amount of protein in the mother’s diet early in pregnancy, a new study has revealed. A team at the California University has found that the cause of diabetes during pregnancy is directly controlled by serotonin, known as a neurotransmitter, and is influenced by the amount of protein in the mother’s diet early in pregnancy
According to scientists, the discovery could lead to simple dietary solutions and possible therapeutics for the disorder known as gestational diabetes, which if untreated, has serious implications for both mother and child. Many have puzzled for decades over the fact that the onset of pregnancy causes a woman to double the number of insulin – producing islet cells in her pancreas.
While that increase enables the mother to control the flow of nutrients to the fetus during its final growth spurt in the trimester, the islet cell production occurs long before those nutrients are actually needed. Until now, no one has known what caused that change.
Clearly, it is not stimulated by the need for nutrients at the time it occurs, so something else had to be causing it. Using a genomic analysis of both pregnant and non pregnant mice, the scientists a broad scan of all of the genes that were turned either on or off in the islet cells during pregnancy.
At the top of the list, was tryptophan hydroxylase, the enzyme that produces serotonin from the amino acid tryptophan. In the newly pregnant mice , that enzyme rose exponentially. Share Health|Fitness
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Friday, September 17, 2010

Super Enzymes

Super Enzymes are chemical substances produced in the living organism. They are marvellous organic catalysts which are essential to life as they control all the chemical reactions that take place in a living system. Enzymes are part of all living cells, including those of plants and animals. The term enzyme, which literally means in yeast’, was coined following the demonstration of catalytic properties of yeast and yeast juices. Although enzymes are produced in the living cell, they are not dependent upon the vital processes of the cell and work outside the cell. Certain enzymes of yeast, for instance, when expressed from the yeast cells are capable of exerting their usual effect, that is, the conversion of sugar to alcohol. A striking feature of enzymes is that while they enter into chemical reaction, they remain intact in the process. They however, act with maximum efficiency at a certain temperature. Lowering the temperature below or raising it above this level slows the reaction. A high degree of heat, that is above 60 o C, permanently destroys their action. It has been estimated that there are over 20,000 enzymes in the human body. This estimate is based on the number of bodily processes that seem to require action. However, so far only about 1,000 enzymes have been identified. But their great role in nutrition and other living processes has been firmly established. They are protein molecules made up of chains of amino acids. They play a vital role and work more efficiently than any reagent concocted by chemists. Thus for instance, a chemist can separate proteins into their component amino acids by boiling them at 166 o C for over 18 hours in a strong solution of hydrochloric acid, but the enzymes of the small intestines can do so in less than three hours at body temperature in a neutral medium. A feature which distinguishes enzymes from inorganic catalysts is that they are absolutely specific in their actions. This means that a particular enzyme can cause reactions involving only a particular type of substance or a group of closely related substances. The substance on which the enzyme acts is known as "substrate". The specificity of an enzyme is, however, related to the formation of the enzyme-substrate complex which requires that the appropriate groupings of both substrate and enzyme should be in correct relative position. The substrate must fit the enzyme like a key fits its lock. Enzymes which are used in the cells which make them are called intracellular enzymes. Enzymes which are produced in cells which secrete them to other parts of the body are known as extracellular enzymes. Digestive juices are an example of the latter type.
There are few enzymes whose names have been established by long usage such as ptyalin, pepsin, trypsin and erepsin. Apart from these, enzymes are usually named by adding the suffixes to the main part of the name of the substrate upon which they act. Thus amylases act upon starch (amylum), lac- tase acts upon lactose, lipases act upon lipids, maltase acts upon maltose and proteases act upon lipids, maltase acts upon maltose and proteases act upon proteins. There are, however, several enzymes which act upon many substances in different ways. These enzymes are named by their functions rather than substrates. Thus, an enzyme which causes deaminations is called a deaminase and oxidising enzyme an oxidase. Some enzymes work efficiently only if some other specific substance is present in addition to substrate. This other substance is known as an "activator" or a "conenzyme" . "Acti- vators" are usually inorganic ions. They increase the activity of a complete enzyme and may take part in the formation of the enzyme-substrate complex. Many of the conenzymes are related to vitamins. This explains why vitamin deficiencies profoundly alter metabolism. Thus, for instance, thiamine, as thiamine pyrophosphate, functions as a conenzyme in at least 14 enzymes systems. Conenzymes, like enzymes, are being continuously regenerated in the cells. Enzymes play a decisive role in the digestion of food as they are responsible for the chemical changes which the food undergoes during digestion. The chemical changes comprise the breaking up of the large molecules of carbohydrates, fats and proteins into smaller ones or conversion of complex substances into simple ones which can be absorbed by the intestines. They also control the numerous reactions by which these simple substances are utilized in the body for building up new tissues and producing energy. The enzymes themselves are not broken down or changed in the process. They remain as powerful at the end of a reaction as they were at the beginning. Moreover, very small amounts can convert large amounts of material. They are thus true catalysts. The process of digestion begins in the mouth. The saliva in the moth, besides helping to masticate the food, carries an enzyme called ptyalin which begins the chemical action of digestion. It initiates the catabolism (breakdown) of carbohydrates by converting starches into simple sugars. This explains the need for thorough mastication of starchy food in the mouth. If this is not done the ptyalin cannot carry out its functions as it is active in an alkaline, neutral or slightly acid medium and is inactivated by the highly acid gastric juices in the stomach. Although enzymatic action starts while food is being chewed, digestion moves into high gear only when the chewed food has passed the esophagus and reached the stomach. While the physical action of peristalsis churns and kneads solid food into a semi-solid amorphous mixture called chyme, this mixture undergoes chemical changes initiated by gastric juices secreted by the walls of the stomach. These juices include mucus for lubricating the stomach, hydrochloric acid and gastric juice. The enzyme or active principle of the gastric juice is pepsin. This enzyme in combination with hydrochloric acid starts the breakdown of proteins into absorbable amino acids called polypeptides. An additional enzyme, rennin, plays an important role in the stomach of the infant. It curdles milk and allows the pepsin to work upon it. The gastric juice has no effect upon starches or fats. When the chyme leaves the stomach and enters the small intestine through the pylorus - the lower escape valve, it still contains much food which is in the form of raw material not yet ready for absorption in the body. Digestion is completed inside the small intestine by several juices. From liver comes a liquid called bile which converts fat globules into a smooth emulsion. The pancreas contributes various enzymes which continue the breakdown of proteins, help to divide starch into sugars and work with bile in digesting fats. The small intestine itself secretes enzymes from its inner wall to complete the reactions. When all the enzymes have done their work, the food is digested and rendered fit for absorption by the system.
Super Enzymes form part of the food we eat. Raw foods contain enzymes in abundance ; cooking,pasteurising, pickling, smoking and other processings denature enzymes. It is, therefore, essential to include in our diet, substantial amount of raw foods in the form of fruits, raw salads and sprouts. Studies have revealed that the body without sufficient raw materials from raw foods, may tire and produce fewer enzymes year after year. This may lead to wearing out of body processes and consequent worn-out looks. Share Health|Fitness
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