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Eating nuts may cut risk of colon cancer recurrence by half

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New York, May 19: Researchers have found that eating tree nuts which include almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts, cashews, and pecans, among others, is associated with significant reduced risk of colon cancer recurrence.

The observational study of 826 patients with stage III colon cancer showed that those who consumed two ounces or more of tree nuts per week had a 46 per cent lower chance of cancer recurrence and 53 per cent lower chance of death than those who did not.

Researchers were particularly interested in nut consumption because it has been linked to lower incidence of obesity, Type-2 diabetes, and reduction in insulin resistance.

These health conditions represent a state of excess energy and are each associated with a higher risk of recurrence and death from colon cancer.

“Numerous studies in the fields of heart disease and diabetes have shown the benefits of nut consumption, and we felt that it was important to determine if these benefits could also apply to colorectal cancer patients,” said lead study author Temidayo Fadelu, a clinical fellow in medicine at Dana Farber Cancer Institute in Boston, Massachusetts, US.

“Patients with advanced disease who benefit from chemotherapy frequently ask what else they can do to reduce their chances of recurrence or death, and our study is an important contribution to the idea that modifying diet and physical activity can be beneficial,” Fadelu said.

The findings are scheduled to be presented at the upcoming 2017 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) annual meeting in Chicago from June 2-6.

There was no associated reduction in cancer recurrence and death among patients who consumed peanuts or peanut butter.

The reason may be that, being legumes, peanuts have a different metabolic composition than tree nuts, according to the study authors.

In their next step, the researchers hope to conduct a randomised, controlled clinical trial where diet recommendations are given at the start of the study to prove that tree nuts can reduce recurrence and death after treatment for colon cancer.

“We need to look at the potential positive impact of nut consumption on survival at other stages of colon cancer, particularly stage IV. Ultimately, we need to understand how nuts confer this protective effect,” Fadelu said.

IANS

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Medical tourism in India on rise

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India Tourism has been seeing a year on year growth; there has been an increase in domestic travellers as well as foreigners travelling to India. India also attracts patients from several countries for Medical treatments.

Medical tourism or health and wellness tourism refers to the industry where people from across the world travel to other countries to get medical, dental or surgical care and at the same time visit local attractions of that country.

Out of the total Medical tourism across globe approximately 63% is shared between Singapore, Thailand and India with Singapore and Thailand being the leaders in the field.

India has seen a regular growth in Medical tourism traveller’s and from 2013 -2016, the medical visas issued annually has grown from 1.22 lacs to 1.78 lacs.

Following are some of the reasons why people choose India for their treatment:

– World Class facilities and services available in India
– Good qualified doctors
– Cost (Some of the major surgeries in India cost 10-20% of the cost incurred in Western Countries)
– No waiting period for treatments

Some challenges which need to be addressed for patients choosing India as preferred Medical tourism hub

– Improve perception on hygiene and service across the globe
– Ensure quality and service
– Step down facilities for Post Surgical care for recovery. India lacks in centers that can take care of recovery needs post treatments and the patient has to spend more days at a hospital.
– Medical Visa – Procedure to obtain medical visa needs simplification as it can get quite cumbersome as per current regulations

Based on statistics released by the government, Delhi, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu are the top destinations for visitors travelling for Medical tourism. Chennai, Mumbai and Delhi have the large number of quality hospitals and take the maximum share of the pie as of today. These cities have a several hospitals to choose from and offer good connectivity across the globe.

Medical tourism or health and wellness tourism can be divided in to 2 different types:

Curative: This is where the traveller’s come in for specific treatments, a few of the preferred treatments are listed below:

Cardiac Surgeries including bypass surgeries

Knee / Hip Replacement surgeries

Orthopedic surgeries

Cosmetic surgeries

Ophthalmology

Rejuvenation: Traveller’s want to explore the ancient treatments and traditional medicines offered in India and hence they come to India, a few are listed below

Ayurveda
Yoga
Siddha
Yunani
Naturopathy

Considering that we can excel in various parameters catering to medical tourism, our country has tremendous potential to increase our share in the Medical Tourism segment.

Jay Kantawala, Founder of WIYO Travel says, “Medical tourism in India has been seeing a year on year growth in the past decade and is expected to grow 2 ½ times in the coming 8-10 years and become a US$ 1.6 Billion market in coming decade. This industry will get a boost if Visa process is simplified and simple cross border payments. In addition to this we are seeing Health care institutions opting for certifications for NABH (National Accreditation Board for Hospitals & Healthcare Providers) and JCI (Joint Commission International) accreditations, which help in building trust amongst travelers”.

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New blood test may help early detection of 8 cancers

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Sydney, Jan 19: A new blood test that can help in the early diagnoses of eight common cancers before they spread and risk patients’ chances of survival has been developed by Australian researchers.

The new test would help early detection of cancers affecting the ovary, liver, stomach, pancreas, oesophagus, bowel, lung and breast, Xinhua quotes a statement from the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research in Australia.

The test “has the potential to be a one-stop, safe screening test for multiple tumour types that should have high community acceptance,” Jeanne Tie, Associate Professor at the institute was quoted as saying.

“For the first time, we have the promise of a screening test that will lead to earlier diagnosis and improved survival outcomes for many tumor types that are major contributors to cancer deaths in our community,” Tie added.

Cancer survival rates are directly linked to how advanced the disease is in a patient during diagnosis, which means that blood tests that can accurately detect the illness well before the symptoms are present is urgently needed.

There are still no effective screening tests for many major tumor types and available tests can each only screen for one cancer at a time, the report said.

The new blood test, reported in the journal Science, screens for key proteins and gene mutations that indicate the presence of the cancers.

It was able to detect tumours in patients in the early stages of the condition in about 70 per cent of the cases.

IANS

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Eating muesli in breakfast may help combat arthritis

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London, Jan 13: Eating a fibre-rich breakfast consisting of muesli and enough fruit and vegetables throughout the day everyday can help maintain a rich variety of bacterial species in the gut, which may have positive influence on chronic inflammatory joint diseases, and prevent bone loss, a study has found.

The findings, led by researchers at the Friedrich-Alexander-Universitat Erlangen-Nurnberg (FAU) in Germany, showed that a healthy diet rich in fibre is capable of changing intestinal bacteria in such a way that more short-chained fatty acids, in particular propionate, are formed.

Short-chained fatty acids are important for the body as they provide energy, stimulate intestinal movement and have an anti-inflammatory effect.

“We were able to show that a bacteria-friendly diet has an anti-inflammatory effect, as well as a positive effect on bone density,” said lead author Mario Zaiss from the FAU.

“We are not able to give any specific recommendations for a bacteria-friendly diet at the moment, but eating muesli every morning as well as enough fruit and vegetables throughout the day helps to maintain a rich variety of bacterial species,” Zaiss added.

In the study, published in Nature Communications, the team focussed on the short-chain fatty acids propionate and butyrate, which are formed during the fermentation processes caused by intestinal bacteria.

These fatty acids can be found, for example, in the joint fluid and it is assumed that they have an important effect on the functionality of joints.

The researchers also proved that a higher concentration of short-chained fatty acids, for example in bone marrow, where propionate caused a reduction in the number of bone-degrading cells, slowing bone degradation down considerably.

“Our findings offer a promising approach for developing innovative therapies for inflammatory joint diseases as well as for treating osteoporosis, which is often suffered by women after the menopause,” Zaiss noted.

IANS

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