It is very common during the winter and monsoon seasons for us to be more susceptible to various infections. According to Ayurveda, a year is divided into 2 kaalas i.e., Uttaryana and Dakshinayana. Each kaala consists of 3 seasons, and so 6 seasons per year with each season persisting for about 2 months.
Uttaryana Kaala (14 January to 14 July)
Shishir Ritu (Winter) Mid- January to Mid- March
Vasant Ritu (Spring) Mid- March to Mid-May
Grishma Ritu (Summer) Mid- May to Mid- July
Dakshinayana Kaala (14 July to 14 January)
Varsha Ritu (Monsoon) Mid- July to Mid- September
Sharad Ritu (Autumn/ Fall) Mid- September to Mid- November
Hemant Ritu (Late Autumn/Pre-Winter) Mid- November to Mid- January
Out of these 6 seasons, Shishir Ritu (winter) extending from Mid-January to Mid-March is a period that remains cold and windy.
Ritusandhi: 'Ritu' means season and 'Sandhi' means junction. It Is a junctional period consisting of the last 7 days of the previous season and the first 7 days of the next season. During this period, our body is prone to infections.
The common ailments which occur during the winter season are:
Common Cold: A common cold is an upper respiratory tract infection caused mainly by viruses. It mainly affects children, old aged people and other immune-compromised individuals. The symptoms include throat irritation, cough with or without phlegm, running nose, sneezing, watery eyes, headache and a low-grade fever.
Stomach Flu: Stomach flu can spread rapidly during the winter season and is caused by the Norovirus. In this condition, there is an ongoing inflammation of the mucosal lining of the stomach. It can be easily transmitted through food and drinks and through feco-oral contamination. The symptoms include nausea, vomiting, watery diarrhoea and stomach cramps. The person may also feel chills, headaches, fatigue and muscle aches.
Extreme Dry Skin: Dry skin also known as winter skin, is usually worsened during the winter season when the environmental humidity is very low. This is because of the cold and dry air which evaporates the water content of the skin very quickly, making it dry and tight. Skin can be prone to inflammations during this period.
Asthma: Asthma is a condition in which the airway becomes narrow and inflamed, leading to difficulty in breathing, cough and wheezing. For some Individuals, these symptoms may flare up during the winter season. The cold dry air can irritate the airways, producing more mucus and increasing the symptoms. Also, the cold environment can worsen airway constriction.
Flu: Flu is commonly mistaken for a common cold but both are different. It is a common viral infection that can be even life-threatening in highly vulnerable groups. It affects the lungs, throat and nose. Flu commonly affects younger and older populations and also people who have reduced immunity or other underlying chronic conditions. Symptoms include high fever, chills, sore throat, nausea, swollen lymph nodes and headache.
Wellness Tips for Winter Ailments
Practice Good Personal Hygiene: Practising good personal hygiene is one of the most important ways to protect yourself from getting infectious diseases such as stomach flu, common cold and flu. It also helps to prevent the spread of infection from yourself to the next person.
Yogic Kriyas: Practising yogic kriyas such as Jala neti will help to remove the excess mucous from the upper respiratory tract and help in the proper airflow without any obstruction. Thus it also helps in asthmatic conditions and alleviates congestion, allergies and cold. It should be practised under the guidance of a proper Yoga trainer. Care should be taken to blow the nostril properly after the practice to avoid headaches.
Basil: Basil has good antiseptic and antiviral properties and is recommended for viral infections like the common cold and flu. It also helps to liquefy the phlegm and is effective for cough and Asthma. It can be added as a topping to soups and sauces
Turmeric: Turmeric has a great antiviral property and acts effectively against the influenza virus. It is also rich in antioxidants and has an anti-inflammatory property.
Vitamin C Rich Foods: Taking Vitamin C rich food is essential for the repair of the tissues. It helps to improve the production of white blood cells and fights against infection. Vitamin C rich foods include Amla, strawberries, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, pepper, citrus fruits like lemon, orange.
Probiotics: Probiotics reduces the possibility of getting upper respiratory tract infections. They help to keep the immune system healthy. It includes buttermilk, fermented rice water, pickled vegetables, kefir etc.
Stay Hydrated: Having a sufficient amount of warm water will help to maintain the moisture content of the skin.
Hot Soups: Soups are a great diet to be added to our winter menu. This can be further enhanced by using various herbs and spices which are good for winters such as rosemary, oregano, ginger, garlic, pepper, cumin etc.
Exercise: Moderate exercise is extremely important to keep our metabolism high. We can get into cardio or yoga practices that help to elevate the body heat and to improve heart functions so that the circulation can be improved to different parts of the body. (Dr Manoj Kutteri, Wellness Director, Atmantan Wellness Centre)
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Mumbai, Sep 6 (IANS) As Maharashtra stands on the brink of a potential "third wave" of Covid, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Monday fervently appealed to all political parties and the common people to put off all protests and avoid crowds during the upcoming festival season.Thackeray's plea came barely 72 hours before the state prepares to celebrate the 10-day long Ganeshotsav starting from September 10, albeit in a subdued manner, after all festivities were cancelled in 2020."I appeal to all... Let's avoid large public gatherings, political protests, meetings or rallies. Let's prioritise the health and lives of the citizens," the CM said, after a review meeting with the state Disaster Management Department.Warning that the "third wave" with a variety of new variants of the Covid-19 virus could be "round the corner", Thackeray said if the people don't take it seriously, the state may be forced to pay a heavy price."The situation could go out of control in view of the spike in the daily cases, so we must take all precautions from our end and ensure that the 'third wave' doesn't hit us," he urged.In a special plea to the political parties, the CM said: "I appeal to all, those in the government and in the Opposition... Please exercise precautions now as peoples' lives are more important. Who would like to impose restrictions on festivals or religious celebrations, but the situation is different now."Referring to Kerala which is reporting around 30,000 cases daily, Thackeray said it's a "danger signal" even for Maharashtra, and the "third wave" has severely disrupted lives in other countries like the US and China.He reiterated that festivals can be celebrated even later, but for that peoples' health and lives must be safeguarded at all costs.Contrary to expectations, the Maha Vikas Aghadi government has not announced fresh curbs on the Ganeshosav, the state's biggest public festival that witnesses millions on the streets for 10 days.However, Congress' Rehabilitation Minister Vijay Wadettiwar indicated that certain restrictions are likely to be imposed as there has been a fresh spurt in Covid cases in the state.Nationalist Congress Party National Spokesperson and Minorities Affairs Minister Nawab Malik exhorted all political parties to heed the CM's appeal in public interest and avoid all events that attract crowds.However, opposition Bharatiya Janata Party leader Ashish Shelar slammed the MVA leaders asking why all restrictions should be only for the general public when the ruling party leaders were allowed to address huge rallies or public meetings.--IANSqn/vd
New Delhi, July 22 (IANS) A majority of air travellers are confident about the safety of air travel and support mask-wearing in the near-term, said a survey report.The survey conducted by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) in June, showed that 85 per cent of 4,700 travellers in 11 markets around the world believe aircraft are thoroughly cleaned and disinfected.However, a majority are frustrated with the "hassle factor" around Covid-19 protocols, including confusion and uncertainty about travel rules, testing requirements, and excessive test costs.Besides, 65 per cent agree the air on an aircraft is as clean as an operating room.Furthermore, passengers strongly supported mask wearing onboard (83 per cent) and strict enforcement of mask rules (86 per cent), but a majority also believe the mask requirement should be ended as soon as possible."Air travellers recognise and value the safety measures put in place to minimise the risk of Covid-19 transmission during air travel. And they support the continuation of these measures as long as necessary, but they also don't want the measures to become permanent," IATA Director General Willie Walsh said."In the meantime, we all need to respect the rules and the safety of fellow passengers. It is unacceptable that unruly passenger incidents have doubled compared to 2019, and the increase in physically abusive behavior is a particular cause for great concern."At the same time, participants admit that they struggle with the Covid-related rules and requirements and that this impacts their willingness to travel."These responses should be a wake-up call to governments that they need to do a better job of preparing for a restart. Almost two thirds of respondents plan to resume travel within a few months of the pandemic being contained," said Walsh."And by the six-month mark, almost 85 per cent expect to be back to travel. To avoid overwhelming airports and border control authorities, governments need to agree to replace paper-based processes with digital solutions like the 'IATA Travel Pass' for vaccine and testing documentation."--IANSrv/sn/vd
New Delhi, June 18 (IANS) Medicover Hospitals has done a study on safety and efficacy of Covid vaccines -- Covaxin and Covishield."We have done a detailed review and analysis of the adverse effects and the outcomes of vaccination among the healthcare workers (Medicover staff) and also among the frontline workers including police. Sample size is about 12,000 people," they said. As the results came in 13% people were infected (out of which 2.63% of people got admitted) after the 1st dosage and 2.83% were infected after the 2nd dosage (out of which 0.4% got admitted).All the infections are of mild in category and none of them were turned to moderate/severe category.No deaths were reported and no case is reported with any clotting issues."Our motto behind the study is to put a evidence based study in front of the people to avoid the hesitancy towards covid vaccination and also to avoid the confusion regarding the brand of vaccine," Medicover said. "Healthcare and frontline category of workers are in enormous exposure to the disease, so if we can see this kind of result in them we can excellent results in public and we can definitely break the chain of this pandemic," Medicover said. --IANSsan/in
Hyderabad(IANS) Aimed at demonstrating data generation and data transparency, Covaxin maker Bharat Biotech on Saturday said that the company has published nine research studies on the safety and efficacy of its vaccine in a year.
"The company has published as many as nine research studies on the safety and efficacy of Covaxin in five globally reputed peer-reviewed journals in a span of just twelve months," Bharat Biotech said in a statement.
As part of its preclinical studies involving testing of vaccine candidates on laboratory animals, the company has already completed three studies which were published in 'Cellpress'.
Likewise, Covaxin's phase I studies carried out to assess vaccine's safety, immune response and right dosage as well as phase II clinical trials which also evaluate a vaccine's ability to generate immune response were published in the 'The Lancet - Infectious Diseases' journal.
"The full data from studies on Covaxin's neutralisation of variants are already published at bioRxiv, Clinical Infectious Diseases, and Journal of Travel Medicine," the pharmaceutical major said.
Similarly, the study on neutralisation of beta and delta variants (B.1.351 and B.1.617.2 respectively) and the study of B1.1.28 variant were published in the 'Journal of Travel Medicine'.
Studies on B.1.617 variant and Alpha variant B.1.1.7 were published by the journal of 'Clinical Infectious Disease' and the 'Journal of Travel Medicine' respectively.
"The published studies are widely cited for the rigor and breadth that Bharat Biotech brings to its clinical trials. Currently, data from both efficacy and safety follow-up of Covaxin's phase III trial is being analysed and compiled," the statement added.
According to the company, complete data for phase I, II and partial data from phase III trials of Covaxin have been thoroughly scrutinised by the Indian regulators.
The Hyderabad-based company promised that it will make phase III trials data from the final analysis public soon.
"Demonstrating its scientific commitment to data generation and data transparency, Bharat Biotech shares full data of all research studies of its Covaxin, India's first indigenous Covid-19 vaccine," the statement added.
Mumbai, June 11 (IANS) Multiplex chain Inox Leisure has rolled-out a Covid safety programme for its employees and their family members.Besides, free vaccination for all the employees, the programme -- Wellness Matters -- comprises of multiple initiatives including free doctor-on-call service, pharmacy and pathology services at special rates, discounted anti-microbial home disinfection and workshops on mental and emotional wellness."The pandemic has taken a significant toll on our physical and mental wellbeing. For a business like ours, which has human emotions forming the core of everything we do, it is extremely important to have a Team, which is not only healthy, happy and safe, but also raring to go, and therefore it is our duty to safeguard their mental and physical health,"said Arun Bhatia, Chief Human Resource Officer, Inox Leisure."The rollout of 'Wellness Matters' is an outcome of our 360-degree commitment towards enabling and strengthening our employees to see through these difficult times. As a part of this program, our free Covid-19 vaccination drive will ensure 100 per cent of our people are inoculated across India."At present, the company is amongst India's largest multiplex chains with 153 multiplexes and 648 screens in 69 cities.--IANSrv/sn/in