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Eating fast food can make kids fat

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New York, If you want your children to stay in shape, do not allow them to indulge in burgers and pizzas. Researchers have found that fast food intake can independently contribute to excess weight gain among children.

Being overweight and obese increases the risk of numerous physical and psychosocial problems during childhood, including fatty liver disease, Type-2 diabetes and depression.

“We now know from our studies and others, that kids who start on the path of extra weight gain during this really important time frame tend to carry it forward into adolescence and adulthood, and this sets them up for major health consequences as they get older,” said first author Jennifer Emond, Assistant Professor at the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth College, US.

“To our knowledge, ours is the first study to follow a cohort over time and to show that fast food, by itself, uniquely contributes to weight gain,” explained Emond.

Previous research has shown that fast food intake is common among children and has suggested that there is an association between fast food consumption and children becoming overweight or obese.

But it has not been clear whether eating fast food independently contributes to excess weight gain at such a young age.

In an effort to make this determination, the investigators followed a cohort of more than 500 pre-school age children (ages 3 to 5) and their families in southern New Hampshire for one year.

The height and weight of the children were measured at the beginning and end of the study published in the journal Pediatric Obesity.

Parents reported their children’s fast food intake frequency weekly – from 11 chain fast food restaurants – in six online surveys that were completed at two-month intervals.

The researchers found that at the beginning of the study, about 18 per cent of the children were overweight and nearly 10 per cent were obese.

Importantly, about 8 per cent of the children transitioned to a greater weight status over the one-year period.

“Unlike with past research, we were able to adjust for other factors – such as exercise and screen time – that could possibly explain away this relationship,” Emond said.

“Findings from this research should be used to inform guidelines and policies that can reduce fast food marketing exposure to children and help support parents who may be struggling to adopt healthier eating behaviours for their kids,” she added.

Lifestyle

Lifestyle changes may cut future stroke risk in women

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New York, April 9 (IANS) Women in their 50s, kindly take note. Middle age may not be too late for you to reduce stroke risk by quitting smoking, daily exercising, maintaining weight and making healthy food choices, according to a new study.

In general, women are more likely than men to have a stroke, die from stroke and have poorer health and physical function after a stroke, said the study published in the American Stroke Association.

The average age of first stroke in women is 75 years. Based on this information, researchers theorised that making mid-life lifestyle changes might help reduce stroke’s burden among women.

“We found that changing to a healthy lifestyle, even in your 50s, still has the potential to prevent strokes. Women who made lifestyle modifications in middle-age reduced their long-term risk of total stroke by nearly a quarter and ischemic stroke, the most common type of stroke, by more than one-third,” said lead author Goodarz Danaei from Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health in Boston, US.

For the findings, researchers analysed the Nurses’ Health Study, which includes health information on nearly 60,000 women who enrolled at an average age of 52 and continued in the study for an average of 26 years.

Researchers studied the impact on stroke risk from smoking cessation, exercising 30 minutes or more daily and gradual weight loss if women were overweight.

They also studied the impact of making recommended dietary modifications that emphasize eating more fish, nuts, whole grains, fruits and vegetables and less red meat, no processed meat and less alcohol.

During the 26-year follow-up, the research team found that 4.7 per cent of women with no lifestyle interventions had a stroke of any type; 2.4 per cent had an ischemic stroke, and 0.7 per cent had a hemorrhagic stroke.

Engaging in the three non-dietary interventions — smoking cessation, daily exercise and weight loss — was estimated to reduce the risk of total stroke by 25 per cent and ischemic stroke by 36 per cent.

Sustained dietary modifications were estimated to reduce the risk of total stroke by 23 per cent.

Researchers also found that increasing fish and nut consumption and reducing unprocessed red meat consumption appeared to have positive impacts on reducing stroke risk.

While this was an observational study that included mostly white, middle-aged women, Danaei said: “We also estimate that exercising 30 minutes or more daily may reduce the risk of stroke by 20 per cent.”


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In lockdown, liquor not smuggled but sold at premium in UP

A bottle of Royal Stag that is normally sold for Rs 600, is presently available at Rs 1,600 while Blenders’ Pride that is priced at Rs 800 is being sold for Rs 2,200-Rs 2,400.

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Lucknow, April 9 : Liquor smuggling may not be happening on a large scale during the lockdown, but it is available at a premium in Uttar Pradesh.

Since the lockdown began on March 22 with the Janata Curfew, very few people have been arrested for liquor smuggling.

According to police sources, barely a dozen persons have been arrested in different districts of the state for smuggling liquor during the lockdown period.

Two persons were arrested on April 1 in the Para locality in Lucknow, who were working as carriers in the liquor smuggling racket. The third accomplice managed to escape.

Two crates of liquor were recovered from their possession with 96 pouches of country liquor.

On Wednesday, in the Chandauli district, thieves broke into a liquor shop and decamped with liquor worth lakhs of rupees.

The incident took place at Alinagar where the thieves broke into the shop from the rear gate.

“They remained in the shop for more than half an hour and took away bottles of liquor and also the cash kept in a drawer,” said Avadesh Jaiswal, the shop owner.

The thieves did not realise that the CCTV cameras were working even though the shop was closed in the lockdown. The entire robbery has been captured on the CCTV cameras and is now going viral on the social media.

The police hopes to arrest the thieves soon because their faces are clearly visible in the footage.

Meanwhile, a senior police official said that smuggling of liquor is not being done at a large scale during the lockdown period because of the intensive checking.

“Moreover, most people do not consume liquor during the “Navratri’ period and in the lockdown, we are searching and questioning everyone who is on the road. So the possibility of liquor smuggling is almost negligible,” he said.

However, regular consumers of liquor claim that their favourite brand is easily available in the state capital, though at a premium.

A bottle of Royal Stag that is normally sold for Rs 600, is presently available at Rs 1,600 while Blenders’ Pride that is priced at Rs 800 is being sold for Rs 2,200-Rs 2,400.

Though liquor shops are shut from the outside, sources said that liquor was being freely made available to ‘known customers’ from the rear side.

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Women can actually be better, safe drivers than men

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New Delhi, Busting a common myth that women are bad at wheels, researchers now say that male drivers are more dangerous on the road and are also more likely to drive more dangerous types of vehicles.

Women may actually be better and safer drivers than men, they added.
The findings, published in the journal The BMJ, prompt the researchers to suggest that greater gender equity in road transport jobs, overall, might help lessen these risks.

“We suggest policy-makers consider policies to increase gender balance in occupations that substantially involve driving, given the greater likelihood that other road users will be killed if men rather than women are driving or riding,” the researchers wrote.

For the findings, researchers at University of Westminster drew on four sets of official data for England for the period 2005-15: police injury statistics, Road Traffic Statistics, National Travel Survey data and Office for National Statistics population/gender figures.

They used the data to analyse the risks posed to other road users from bicycles, cars and taxis, vans, buses, lorries and motorbikes per billion vehicle kilometres travelled, and categorised by road type–major and minor roads in urban and rural areas–and gender.

In terms of absolute numbers, cars and taxis were associated with most (two-thirds) of fatalities to other road users.

But a comparison of fatalities per distance travelled shows that other vehicles might be even more dangerous.

According to the researchers, lorries were associated with one in six deaths to other road users: each km driven was associated with more than five times the number of such deaths than each km driven in a car. There was a similarly high death toll for buses per km driven.

Despite their small size, motorbikes also put other road users at high risk. In urban areas, most of those deaths–173 over the entire study period–were pedestrians.

Analysis of the data by gender showed that men posed a significantly higher risk to other road users for five of the six-vehicle types studied.

For cars and vans, the risk posed by male drivers was double that posed by women per km driven, rising to four times higher for lorry drivers, and more than 10 times higher for motorbike riders.

In a linked podcast, the researchers pointed out that driving jobs tend to be male-dominated, citing the high death toll to other road users associated with lorries, 95 per cent of which are driven by men.

While lorries, in general, are dangerous vehicles, male lorry drivers pose a particularly high risk compared to female lorry drivers, she adds.


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