Travelling calories don't count but it's important to keep yourself in shape. Working out has become more of a lifestyle than any leisure activity. It indeed gets difficult to maintain timely eating habits. But there are always some ways out if you are willing to choose healthily. Dietician and Nutritionist Sakina Mustansir shares few ways to keep a balanced diet:
Try to Eat Homemade Food/Cook Your Own Meal
There is an old saying, "your mood changes when you eat according to the person's mood who made it." Even when you cook unhealthy food it becomes healthy when it's made at home. It's always convenient to carry food from home rather than eating at roadside vendors or unhygienic food. So, try to cook your own meal wherever possible. Also carry munching snacks like nuts, dried fruits, peanut butter sandwiches or whole wheat/multigrain bread sandwiches, protein bars etc.
No amount of soft drinks or hard drinks will subside the need for water in our body. It's always recommended to be hydrated. Research shows when you are dehydrated it results in forced hunger cravings. You confuse hunger with thirst and get sugary food cravings or indulge in binge eating. Do you know? Drinking water before every meal cuts the portion size and you end up intaking fewer calories.
Don't Skip or Avoid Breakfast
Most of the people skip breakfasts on the trip which makes them more lethargic which enables them to follow healthy eating patterns. If you eat a healthy breakfast your body fills up the nutrients and proteins it requires for the day and starves the carvings off. Buffet breakfast is a trap, don't indulge in overeating either. Cater to the energy your body needs at the moment. While travelling, never skip breakfast. Always aim for a good healthy breakfast so as to avoid hunger pangs and binging on unhealthy snacks later during the day. Also carry some uncut fruits or boiled eggs or chickpeas from the breakfast table for later, to keep you energetic for the exploration.
Avoid Alcohol or Sugary Beverages
The calories in beverages are more reactive as compared to the calories in solid food. Being on a vacation doesn't mean your liver is on a vacation as well. Cutting on calories or alcohol fat is more difficult than cutting down the vacation fat. Avoid sodas if that's convenient.
Usually the most authentic local cuisine also happens to be the healthiest. So while traveling, always try the country's authentic cuisine rather than fast food joints and processed foods. This will not only keep you healthy and give you more energy to explore but you will have an opportunity to taste different cuisines and experience their culture.
Don't Stress About Treats
Give yourself a break, don't keep a count on everything you eat. You always end up eating more if you stress about what you eat all the time. Having a healthy relationship with what you eat is important. Plenty of vegetables are healthier than you are aware of.
Any weight you gain while you travel is most likely to be water retention or constipation. You are most likely to reduce this in a span of one week when you're back to your lifestyle. Be diligent with your exercise or walks while travelling.(By N. Lothungbeni Humtsoe)
Read More► Should Carbs Be Completely Stopped During Weight Loss?
London, Sep 5 (IANS) Sugar feeding prior to having an infected blood meal could protect a mosquito's ability to get infected and transmit arboviruses such as Zika, dengue and chikungunya, according to a new study.The finding, published in the journal PLOS Pathogens, could lead to the development and application of vector control strategies such as sugar baits, aimed at reducing arbovirus transmission.The research -- led by the MRC-University of Glasgow Centre for Virus Research -- showed that the Aedes aegypti species of mosquito, an arbovirus vector, had enhanced immunity in the gut after feeding on sugar, which in turn protected females of the species against viral infection."This study is important because we've been able to show that sugar feeding by these mosquitos blocks an initial infection of an arbovirus and lowers infection prevalence and intensity, thereby decreasing the potential of female mosquitoes to transmit these viruses further," said Dr Emilie Pondeville, Molecular Entomologist at the MRC-University of Glasgow Centre for Virus Research."Overall, our findings uncover a crucial role of sugar feeding in mosquito antiviral immunity, which in turn decreases the potential for spread of these arboviruses, which pose a significant threat to people," Pondeville said.Male and female adult mosquitoes feed on plant nectar and sap to get carbohydrates for their energy reserves. In addition, mosquito females require a blood meal to reproduce. For this reason they can act as vectors of numerous pathogens, such as the arboviruses like Zika, dengue and chikungunya viruses, which constitute a substantial worldwide public health burden. However, the influence of sugar on mosquito immunity and their ability to transmit viruses has not been explored until now.Since Aedes aegypti female mosquitoes almost exclusively feed on blood in some natural settings, the findings suggest that a lack of sugar intake could increase the spread of mosquito-borne arboviral diseases; and highlights a possible explanation for high susceptibility and transmission of arboviruses by this mosquito species.--IANSrvt/rs
Singapore, Aug 19 (IANS) People who were infected with SARS in 2003 and recovered are able to produce antibodies that can potentially neutralise all known Covid-19 variants of concern, scientists have found.The findings, published in The New England Journal Of Medicine, could pave the way for the development of a booster jab, which may involve targeting the SARS-CoV-1 virus responsible for the SARS epidemic in 2003, the Strait Times reported.A team from the Duke-NUS medical school and the National Centre for Infectious Diseases (NCID), found that the antibodies can also tackle other potential animal coronaviruses, offering a broader spectrum of protection for future variants and coronaviruses.Among the coronavirus family, one viral sub-group relies on the ACE2 molecule -- a protein found on the surface of many cell types -- to enter human cells. Neutralising antibodies are able to prevent the viral spike protein from binding with the ACE2 molecules in human cells."Both SARS-CoV-1 and the SARS-Cov-2 virus, which causes Covid-19, belong to this group, as well as a number of coronaviruses circulating among animals such as bats, pangolins and civets," Professor Wang Linfa from the Duke-NUS Emerging Infectious Diseases (EID) programme was quoted as saying."Collectively, this group of viruses is known as the sarbecovirus, which has the potential to jump from animals to humans, and could start the next pandemic, although the exact route of transmission still remains unknown," he added.The SARS-CoV-1, SARS-CoV-2 viruses, and the sarbecoviruses have similar antibody-binding sites, which can be targeted by a pan-sarbecovirus neutralising antibody to prevent infection.For the study, the team recruited eight people who recovered from SARS-CoV-1, 10 healthy people and 10 people who recovered from Covid-19 and compared the immune response of the three groups before and after they were vaccinated with the Covid-19 vaccine.Before getting vaccinated, people who recovered from SARS had detectable neutralising antibodies against the SARS-CoV-1 virus, but had little to no antibodies against the SARS-CoV-2 virus, Dr Wanni Chia, a research fellow at the Duke-NUS EID programme was quoted as saying.But after taking two shots of the Pfizer Covid vaccine, they displayed high levels of neutralising antibodies against both viruses, and a broad spectrum of antibodies against 10 sarbecoviruses that were examined, she noted.The team now aims to develop a vaccine booster to increase protection for the Covid-19 variants, and potential SARS-CoV-3 or SARS-CoV-4 disease, the report said.--IANSrvt/vd
New York, Aug 19 (IANS) The early Covid-19 vaccination campaign in the US prevented nearly 1,40,000 deaths and three million corona cases by the second week of May, according to a new study.The study, published online by the journal Health Affairs, estimates the number of lives saved between December 21, 2020 to May 9, 2021 in each of the 50 states and Washington, DC. As a result of early vaccination efforts, the average state experienced five fewer deaths from Covid-19 per 10,000 adult residents.Adjusting for population size, New York saw the largest estimated reduction, with 11.7 fewer Covid-19 deaths per 10,000 adult residents. Hawaii observed the smallest reduction, with 1.1 fewer Covid-19 deaths per 10,000 adult residents."The findings provide support for policies that further expand vaccine administration to enable a larger proportion of the nation's population to benefit," said Christopher Whaley, policy researcher at RAND, a nonprofit research organisation."Our results suggest that further efforts to vaccinate populations globally and in a coordinated fashion will be critical to achieving greater control of the Covid-19 pandemic," added Sumedha Gupta, first author of the study and an economist at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis.The economic value of the lives saved during the study period is estimated to be between $625 billion and $1.4 trillion. Through the end of 2020, the US federal government had allocated $13 billion dollars for vaccine development and manufacturing, the researchers said.The US continues to be the worst-hit country with the world's highest number of cases and deaths at 3,71,48,877 and 6,24,209, respectively, according to Johns Hopkins University.More than 59 per cent of the US population has received at least one dose of Covid-19 vaccines, with 50.9 per cent fully vaccinated, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.--IANSrvt/dpb
Toronto, Aug 18 (IANS) Vaccine nationalism may strongly impact global trajectories of Covid-19 case numbers and increase the potential emergence of novel variants, warn researchers.A team of researchers from the US and Canada projected forward the incidence of Covid-19 cases under a range of vaccine dosing regimes, vaccination rates, and assumptions related to immune responses.They did so in two model regions: One with high access to vaccines (HAR) and a low-access region (LAR). The models also allowed for the regions to be coupled either through case importation, or the evolution of a novel variant in one of the regions. The study is published in the journal Science."Certain countries such as Peru and South Africa that have had severe Covid-19 outbreaks have received few vaccines, while many doses have gone to countries experiencing comparatively milder pandemic impacts, either in terms of mortality or economic dislocation," said Caroline Wagner, Assistant professor of bioengineering at McGill University.Overall, the study found that increased vaccine-sharing resulted in reduced case numbers in LARs."Because it appears that vaccines are highly effective at reducing the clinical severity of infections, the public health implications of these reductions are very significant," said Michael Mina, Assistant Professor at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.On the other hand, the models predicted that sustained elevated case numbers in LARs with limited vaccine availability will result in a high potential for viral evolution, underlying the importance of rapid, equitable global vaccine distribution.As the pandemic progresses, viral evolution may play an increasingly large role in sustaining transmission, the researchers said.Further, they noted that there are additional considerations for vaccine equity beyond epidemiological and evolutionary ones."Ethics also argues against countries stockpiling vaccines or allocating doses for boosters. This study strongly supports that ethical position showing that stockpiling will undermine global health," said Ezekiel Emanuel, Professor at the University of Pennsylvania.--IANSrvt/vd
New Delhi, Aug 18 (IANS) The ICMR-National Institute of Virology (NIV) in Pune has been at the forefront of scientific research on SARS-CoV-2 in the country. "2021 was a difficult but rewarding year for us", said Ms Priya Abraham, Director of ICMR-NIV in an interview with India Science, the OTT channel of the Department of Science & Technology.Giving an overview of vaccine development process at the institute, she said, "We quickly isolated and gave a strain to Bharat Biotech International Limited (BBIL) by the end of April (2020), after which they developed a whole virion-inactivated vaccine in the month of May and gave us back for review. We checked it for its complete inactivation, did its complete characterisation and started pre-clinical trials on hamsters and non-human primates, that is, monkeys. In the next phase, we assisted them in the Phase I, II and III clinical trials in areas such as diagnostic aspect and laboratory support".Here are some excerpts from the interview on the scientific developments on COVID-19.Q: In which stage is the trial of Covaxin on children running and by when can we expect to have vaccine for children?A: Presently, Phase II and III trials of COVAXIN are going on for children in the age group of 2-18 years. Hopefully, the results are going to be available very soon. The results will be presented to the regulators. So, by September or just after it, we may have COVID-19 vaccines for children. This apart, Zydus Cadila's vaccine trial is also going on. This can also be applied for children and will be made available.Q: Apart from these, what other vaccines can be made available for our citizens?A: Zydus Cadila's vaccine will be the first DNA vaccine which will be available for use. Besides, there is Gennova Biopharmaceuticals Ltd's m-RNA vaccine, Biological-E vaccine, Serum Institute of India's Novovax and, another interesting one - an intra-nasal vaccine developed by Bharat Biotech International Limited. This vaccine does not require a jab and can be delivered through nostrils.Q: Will any of the presently available vaccines be effective on Delta-Plus variant?A: First of all, the Delta-plus variant is less likely to spread than the Delta variant itself. Mainly Delta variant is present in over 130 countries. It has spread all over the world and it is this variant which is highly transmissible. In NIV we have done studies on this variant. We have studied the antibodies produced in the bodies of vaccinated people and checked it against this variant. It has been found that efficacy of antibodies against this variant has been reduced two to three folds. Yet, the vaccines are still protective against the variants. They may show a little less efficacy, but vaccines are very important to prevent serious forms of disease due to which patients may get hospitalized and even die. So, whatever the variant, vaccine is till now protective against all, including the Delta variant. So, there should not be any hesitancy at all.Q: Are we going to require a booster dose in the coming times? Is any study being conducted on this matter?A: Studies on booster dose have been going on overseas and at least seven different vaccines have been tried out for booster dose. Now, WHO has put a stop to it till more countries catch up with vaccination. This is because there is an alarming vaccine gap between high-income and low-income countries. But, in future, recommendations for boosters will definitely come.Q: Are studies also on for mix and match of vaccines? Will it be beneficial for us?A: There was a situation where inadvertently two different vaccines were given in two doses. We have tested those samples at NIV and found that the patients who received different vaccines in two doses were safe. No adverse effect was noted and immunogenicity was a little better. So, it is definitely not something which will cause a safety issue. We are studying this phenomenon and will be able to give more details in a few days' time.Q: Has any new COVID-19 testing method emerged that gives better results and can be trusted more?A: Hospitals and laboratories were overwhelmed by the huge number of cases during the second wave. Many of their staff members were infected. So, efficiency of testing had reduced during that time. There was a shortage of reagents also. All these affected the efficacy of testing. RT-PCR testing method is by itself only about 70 per cent sensitive. But it is still recommended by WHO. But, in the future we may see easier and quicker 'point-of-care' tests where we need not send samples to labs.Q: Please tell us about ICMR developed RT-LAMP Test.A: RT-LAMP assay produced by ICMR is a cost-effective assay. It does not require expensive equipment or extensive training and can also be done at Primary Health Centres in districts. These kinds of quick and fast tests which can be done in technologically not so advanced places will become more popular in the future.Q: Self-testing kits have also come in markets now. Will it further pace up testing?A: Self-testing kits are antigen testing kits and so, their sensitivity is inferior to RT-PCR method. The sensitivity is likely to be more in symptomatic patients. But, for asymptomatic patients, the sensitivity will be less.Q: Can people infected by Bird-Flu or Zika Virus become susceptible to SARS-CoV-2 infection?A: Bird Flu and Zika Virus are unrelated to Coronavirus. But one commonality between HINI Bird Flu or Swine Flu Virus and SARS-CoV-2 is that their spread is prevented by good use of masks, physical distancing, hand hygiene and cough etiquette. All these viruses spread through the respiratory route. Thus, by following COVID Appropriate Behaviour we can limit the spread of all these viruses. However, Zika Virus spreads through mosquito bites.Q: Do chances of COVID-19 infection increase during monsoon?A: Yes, viral infections like Dengue, Chikangunya and Zika Virus infections that spread through mosquito bites are going to increase during monsoon. Accumulated water should not be kept in the surroundings as mosquitoes breed in it. It will be worse to have corona infection on top of these infections which spread through mosquito bites.Q: Many images of crowded places are circulating in media. How much harm can this irresponsible behaviour cause?A: Definitely, this will be a problem and we will be 'inviting' the next wave. Dr Tedros A. Ghebreyusus, DG of WHO says, "The pandemic will end when we choose to end it. It is in our hands." It means that we have to be careful. Especially in the upcoming festival season, we should not indulge in crowding because that is how the virus will spread.Q: Is it possible that no other wave will come?A: New variants will keep on coming. We have two weapons which are the biggest protection. These are: wearing mask properly and actively encouraging everyone to get vaccinated. Then even if a wave comes, it will not be a big one.--IANSavr/skp/