Can the Hunger hormone help patients with heart failure?

Can the Hunger hormone help patients with heart failure?

A serious condition that affects how properly the heart can pump blood throughout the body is heart failure.

Heart failure is managed with a combination of medicines and lifestyle changes.

In a recent study, individuals with chronic heart failure were examined for the hormone acyl ghrelin.

Its discovery that acyl ghrelin could boost cardiac output may encourage more study into the therapeutic potential of this substance.

When the heart is unable to adequately pump blood throughout the body, heart failure can be hazardous. One area of research is discovering drugs that successfully enhance heart function.

Recently, a study on the use of the peptide hormone acyl ghrelin to increase cardiac output in persons with heart failure was published in the European Heart Journal.

Acyl ghrelin, which increases cardiac output, or the heart’s capacity to pump blood, was found to have no adverse impact on participants’ blood pressure or heart rhythms.

The impact of heart failure

When the heart cannot efficiently pump blood throughout the body, cardiac failure results. Many issues, including fluid retention and weariness, may result from this.

Serious side effects like kidney damage or unexpected cardiac arrest might also result from it. Almost 6 million adults in the US suffer from heart failure. Someone may be at risk of contracting the disorder if certain conditions exist.

For instance, those who have diabetes, high blood pressure, or coronary artery disease are more likely to develop heart failure. Risk can also be increased by lifestyle factors like inactivity or a diet high in salt.

Heart failure must be managed using a multifaceted strategy, frequently involving both medication and lifestyle modifications.

Cardiologist and medical director of the Deborah Heart and Lung Center’s Advanced Heart Failure Department, Dr. Kulpreet Barn, who was not involved in the current study.

More treatment options for heart failure

The authors of this study point out that certain drugs can improve cardiac output and the heart’s ability to contract. The quantity of blood that the heart pumps out is known as cardiac output.

Unfortunately, these drugs might have negative side effects and are frequently only taken temporarily. Ghrelin, a hormone that increases appetite, was tested to see if it might efficiently increase cardiac output. Acyl ghrelin, an active version of ghrelin, was used by the researchers.

The purpose of the study, according to study author Prof. Lars H. Lund of the Department of Medicine at Solna’s Karolinska Institute in Sweden, was “to test whether acyl ghrelin, a novel drug treatment, is safe and effective for patients with heart failure, and to test the mechanism of action in the laboratory.”

No adverse effects from ghrelin

There were roughly thirty individuals in the study who had heart failure and a low ejection fraction; it was a randomised, placebo-controlled, double-blind trial.

The amount of blood the heart pumps to the body with each contraction is measured by ejection fraction. To investigate the underlying mechanisms behind the effects of acyl ghrelin, researchers also examined the impact of the hormone on the heart muscle cells of mice.

Either the treatment group or the placebo group was selected from among the participants. The intervention group was given artificial human acyl ghrelin, while the control group received an intravenous saline infusion as a placebo.

The injections happened throughout a 2-hour period. Cardiac output significantly increased in the intervention group. A 28% increase in cardiac output was observed by researchers without any negative consequences.

Subjects did not experience low blood pressure, rapid heart rate, ischemia, or irregular heart rhythms. Participants from the intervention group continued to experience cardiac function that was higher than their pre-treatment baseline over the 2- to 5-day follow-up period.

Promising findings

The fundamental mechanisms of acyl ghrelin actions have been examined through research on the cardiac muscle cells of mice.

While more research is required, it’s possible that acyl ghrelin doesn’t cause any negative effects since calcium ions aren’t being mobilised. As a prospective therapy for persons with heart failure, acyl ghrelin appears to be promising.

Founder of Manhattan Cardiology and fellow of the American College of Cardiology (FACC) Dr. Robert Segal made the following observation although not participating in the study:

There is a need for additional clinical development because of the clinical benefit of acylated (activated) ghrelin that has been observed. It has always been difficult to treat heart failure caused by a low ejection fraction, but hopefully we can make progress with this terrible condition.

Optimal dose not yet clear

More investigation is necessary because this study has a number of shortcomings. First off, there were not many participants in the study, and there was little time for follow-up. Larger samples and a longer follow-up period may therefore be used in future studies.

Furthermore, there was no necessity for official reporting of adverse events because the inquiry concerned an endogenous peptide hormone rather than a novel chemical or medication. Nonetheless, the individuals were observed by the researchers both before and after the treatment.

The best dose of acyl ghrelin was not found by the researchers in their trial, they say. Also, there were some restrictions on how the researchers could measure cardiac function, and there might have been some variations between the intervention and placebo groups.

Potential conflicts of interest were also reported by some of the study’s authors. To comprehend the underlying mechanism for the enhancements in heart function observed by the researchers, more investigation is also required.

Future clinical trials

The present study “provides a framework for later phase trials with ghrelin-like therapies,” according to Prof. Lund.

Future studies could consist of “a larger clinical trial with extended treatment duration, to test whether this medication may be useful for chronic use,” the author continued.

According to D. R. Barn, this was “a terrific, early-phase study that shows tremendous potential as there are favourable changes to the heart function.”


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How gut bacteria can boost cancer immunotherapy efficacy?

How gut bacteria can boost cancer immunotherapy efficacy?

Researchers looked into how gut bacteria affected mice’s response to immune checkpoint inhibitor (ICI) therapy. They discovered that ICIs enable specific gut bacteria to get through tumor locations. It then stimulates the immune system, which then destroys cancer cells.

To confirm whether these results may apply to humans, more research is required.

Immunotherapy includes the use of immune checkpoint inhibitors (ICIs). They function by “taking the brakes off” of the immune system so it can eliminate cancer cells by blocking certain proteins that restrict immune function, such as CTLA-4 or PD-1.

Unfortunately, ICI therapies are ineffective in up to 50% of cancer patients. The effectiveness of ICI treatment may be influenced by the gut flora, according to a growing body of research.

According to research, animals with impaired gut flora or those given antibiotic treatment react to ICI less favourably. Studies have also shown that faecal transplants of new microbiota may improve ICI responsiveness.

The best gut bacteria for boosting ICI response and the mechanism by which gut bacteria enhance immune response are still unknown.

Immune Checkpoint Inhibitors(ICI) and gut bacteria

Recent studies examined the relationship between gut bacterial diversity and ICI effectiveness in a mouse model of melanoma.

They discovered that ICI treatment results in gastrointestinal inflammation. This allows bacteria to get through the intestines. Thereby moves to lymph nodes close to tumors where they activate immune cells.

The research is published in Science Immunology. Even though checkpoint inhibitor treatment has demonstrated unheard-of clinical success, a sizable portion of responders will later develop acquired resistance. As previously mentioned, the gut microbiota has a significant impact on host anti-tumor immunity in several ways. This affects the clinical reactions and outcomes of cancer immunotherapy patients.

Dr. Anton Bilchik, chief of medicine and director of the Gastrointestinal and Hepatobiliary Program at Saint John’s Cancer Institute in Santa Monica, California, as well as a surgical oncologist and division chair of general surgery at Providence Saint John’s Health Center, did not take part in the study.

Investigating ICI efficacy

Mice with and without melanoma tumours received ICI therapy as part of the study.

They discovered that ICI treatment exacerbated gastrointestinal inflammation, allowing certain bacteria to pass from the gut to lymph nodes close to the tumour as well as the tumour site. In that location, the bacteria triggered a group of immune cells that destroyed tumour cells.

The effectiveness of ICI may be impacted by antibiotic exposure, according to the study. To do this, mice were first given antibiotic treatment. Further followed by melanoma tumor implantation and ICI treatment a week later.

They discovered that exposure to antibiotics lowered the number of immune cells and the migration of the gut microbiota to the lymph nodes.

Finally, they looked at whether giving out certain bacteria may counteract the effect of the antibiotics on the effectiveness of the ICI. They discovered that using Escherichia coli and Enterococcus faecalis in treatments increased ICI effectiveness.

Fecal microbiome transplantation

FMT is the most direct way to change the microbiota. Feces from one donor is given to another by lyophilized or frozen pills that are taken orally. Also, they can be delivered directly via colonoscopy or gastroscopy.

With almost 300 registered clinical trials as of now, FMTs are being investigated as a treatment alternative for an increasing range of illnesses (, accessed Aug 2021). Over the past ten years, it has been clear that FMTs are extraordinarily effective at treating resistant and recurring Clostridium difficile infections. This helps patients feel better and get rid of their clinical symptoms.

Dietary intervention and lifestyle

The relationship between diet and the microbiota has been studied for numerous years at various resolution levels because gut microbes have a role in food digestion. In fact, distinct microbial communities are closely involved in the sequential host digestion and nutrient extraction, with the gut microbiota playing the major role.

On the one hand, the host’s inability to digest a large number of chemicals released by the gut microbiota affects the food’s ability to provide nutrients. Contrarily, both short- and long-term dietary modifications can affect the microbial transcriptome and metabolomic profiles, especially for newborn nutrition. This may have long-term effects through microbial modulation of the immune system. For instance, high-fat diets are linked to significant changes in the makeup of the colonic microbiota. This includes decreases in both Gram-positive.

Study restrictions

Dr. Andrew Koh, senior author of the present work and associate professor at the Harold C. Simmons Comprehensive Cancer Center at UT Southwestern, was contacted by MNT to discuss its limitations.

They only employed one preclinical cancer model, which, according to Dr. Koh, is a significant restriction, necessitating additional research to see whether the results also apply to other cancers.

Although we have not yet produced evidence to support that notion, we think that our findings may also be applicable to other tumours, he said.

According to published research, various human cancers include specific or unique tumour microbiomes, and many of the prominent taxa are bacteria that normally live in the gut. Dr. Bilchik stated that it is still unclear whether the results apply to people when asked about the study’s other limitations.

Interventional gastroenterologist Dr. Lance Uradomo, who is not affiliated with the study and practice in Irvine, California at the City of Hope Orange County Lennar Foundation Cancer Center, stated that “the type of therapy applied for testing melanoma can be linked to adverse side effects, such as colitis.”

Before it is known if microbiome therapy — and the proper administration — is genuinely successful, more research is required, he continued.


The gut microbiome appears to have a significant impact on host immunity and therapeutic response in cancer, either locally within the tumour microenvironment or via systemic antiviral immune responses, according to strong evidence from preclinical and clinical research. The latter is most likely the reason why the gut microbiota is able to control how the body reacts to immunotherapy and traditional chemotherapeutic drugs, eventually having a variety of effects on patient outcomes.


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Explore the warning signs of immune system problems.

Explore the warning signs of immune system problems.

It’s a lifesaver when your immune system is functioning properly. That may be excellent, but it is not faultless. This unique collection of cells, tissues, and organs occasionally behaves improperly.

With autoimmune illnesses, your immune system attacks your body unintentionally. Rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease, and a few thyroid diseases are examples of these types.

What is an autoimmune disease?

Normally, the immune system protects against viruses and germs. It sends out an army of fighter cells to attack these foreign invaders as soon as it detects them.

The immune system can typically distinguish between your own cells and foreign cells. When you have an autoimmune disease, your immune system misinterprets your skin or joints as alien tissues. Autoantibodies, which are proteins released by the body, assault healthy cells.

Certain autoimmune disorders only affect a single organ. The pancreas is harmed by type 1 diabetes. Some illnesses, such as lupus or systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), can have a total body impact.

A brief description of some of the most prevalent autoimmune illnesses is given below.

Why does the immune system attack the body?

Clinicians are unsure of the precise aetiology of immune system malfunction. Nonetheless, some people are more likely than others to develop an autoimmune disease.

According to a 2014 study, women are more likely than males to develop autoimmune illnesses (6.4% of women versus 2.7% of men). A lot of times, the illness strikes women who are fertile (ages 15 to 44).

Some ethnic groups are more likely to develop specific autoimmune illnesses. For instance, lupus affects white individuals less than it does African Americans and Hispanics.

Many autoimmune conditions, including lupus and multiple sclerosis, run in families. Although not every family member will necessarily have the same illness, they all have a propensity for autoimmune diseases.

Researchers believe environmental factors like infections and exposure to chemicals or solvents may potentially play a role in the rise in the prevalence of autoimmune illnesses.

Another possible risk factor for developing an autoimmune illness is a “Western diet”. Consuming meals that are rich in fat, sugar, and processing is likely to contribute to inflammation, which may trigger an immunological response. But there is no proof of this.

SHORT VERDICT: The precise causation of autoimmune disorders is unknown. A number of factors may be at play, including genetics, nutrition, infections, and chemical exposure.

Your chance of contracting COVID-19 may increase if your immune system is compromised. If you have symptoms, make sure to get checked as soon as possible.

Common signs of a weak immune system

Remember that there are numerous additional reasons why these potential signals might appear. You should visit your doctor to find out what’s wrong with your health.

Cold hands

Your fingers, toes, ears, and nose may have a tougher time maintaining heat if your blood vessels are irritated. When exposed to cold, the skin in these places may turn white, then blue. The skin may turn red after the blood flow has resumed.

“Raynaud’s phenomenon,” as doctors refer to it. It can be brought on by immune system issues as well as by smoking, some prescription medications, and artery-related illnesses.

Dry Eyes

If you suffer from an autoimmune condition, your immune system is attacking your body rather than protecting it. Lupus and rheumatoid arthritis are two examples.

Dry eyes are a common symptom for those with autoimmune diseases. You can get a sand-like, grainy feeling in your eye. Astringent discharge, discomfort, redness, or blurred vision are some potential symptoms. Even when they are angry, some people find they are unable to cry.


Extreme fatigue similar to what you experience from the flu may indicate a problem with your body’s defences. Sleep probably won’t do any good. Your muscles or joints may also hurt. However, there may be a variety of different causes for your feelings.

Light Fever

Your immune system may be beginning to overwork itself if your body temperature is higher than usual. It may occur as a result of an impending infection or the beginning of an autoimmune disorder flare-up.


Headaches can have an immune system component. Vasculitis, for instance, is the inflammation of a blood vessel brought on by an infection or an autoimmune disorder.


Your body’s first line of defence against pathogens is your skin. How it feels and looks may be an indication of how well your immune system is functioning.

Skin that is red, dry, and itchy is a typical sign of inflammation. The same goes for rashes that hurt or don’t go away. Lupus patients frequently develop a butterfly-shaped rash on their cheeks and nose.

Joint Pain

Your joints become sensitive to the touch when the lining inside them gets inflamed. It might affect more than one joint, and it may also be stiff or swollen. It can seem to be worse in the morning.

Patchy Hair Loss

The immune system can occasionally assault hair follicles. You can have a disorder called alopecia areata if you experience hair loss on your scalp, face, or other areas of your body. Hair breaking out in clumps or strands is another sign of lupus.

Continual Infections

Your body might not be able to effectively combat germs on its own if you need to take antibiotics more than twice per year (four times for kids).

Additional warning signs include persistent sinus infections, having more than four ear infections in a calendar year (for anybody older than 4), and recurring pneumonia.

Sun sensitivity

Photodermatitis, an allergic response to ultraviolet (UV) radiation, can occasionally occur in people with autoimmune diseases. After being in the sun, you can develop blisters, a rash, or scaly spots. Alternatively you can get nausea, a headache, or chills.

Numbness or Tingling in Your Feet and Hands

That might be entirely benign. Yet, in other circumstances it may indicate that your body is targeting the nerves that communicate with your muscles. For example, numbness that begins in the legs and spreads to the arms and chest may be a symptom of Guillain-Barre syndrome.

Acute inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (AIDP), the demyelinating type of GBS, lasts for two to thirty days, whereas chronic inflammatory demyelinating polyneuropathy (CIDP) lasts longer. Longer-lasting is CIDP.

Difficulty swallowing

Your oesophagus, which transports food from your mouth to your stomach, may be enlarged or underdeveloped if you have trouble swallowing. Some individuals have a food-stuck sensation in their throat or chest. Those who swallow choke or gag. Your immune system could be one of the potential causes.

Unaccounted-for Weight Change

Even if your eating habits and exercise routine haven’t altered, you notice that you are putting on weight. Perhaps the number on your scale can fall without apparent cause. It’s possible that your thyroid gland has been harmed by an autoimmune disease as a result.

White Spots

Sometimes, melanocytes, the cells that produce colour in the skin, are targeted by the immune system. If so, your body will start to develop white patches of skin.

Your Skin or Eyes Are Turning Yellow

Jaundice, sometimes called biliary cirrhosis, is a condition where your immune system attacks and destroys healthy liver cells. This may result in autoimmune hepatitis, a disease.

Symptoms of autoimmune diseases

Several autoimmune illnesses have early signs and symptoms, including:

  • fatigue
  • stiff muscles
  • swell and erythema
  • minimal fever
  • difficulty concentrating
  • tingling and numbness in the hands and feet
  • hair fall
  • body rashes

Also, every disease may have a different set of symptoms. As an illustration, type 1 diabetes results in excessive thirst, weight loss, and exhaustion. IBD results in diarrhoea, bloating, and stomach pain.

Symptoms of autoimmune illnesses like psoriasis or RA can fluctuate. A flare-up is a time when symptoms are present. Remission refers to the time frame during which symptoms disappear.

VERDICT: Signs of an autoimmune disease may include weariness, muscle aches, swelling, and redness. With time, symptoms may appear and disappear.


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Higher blood caffeine linked to lower fat & type 2 diabetes

Higher blood caffeine linked to lower fat & type 2 diabetes

Researchers looked into how measurements of body fat, type 2 diabetes risk, and cardiovascular risk were affected by a genetic susceptibility to high caffeine levels.

Scientists discovered a connection between less body fat and a higher risk of type 2 diabetes and a higher genetic propensity to higher caffeine levels. The findings need to be confirmed by other research.

The psychoactive chemical that is most commonly ingested worldwide is caffeine. Coffee, tea, and soft drinks are the main sources of caffeine consumption.

According to certain research, caffeine consumption is associated with reduced body mass index (BMI), decreased fat mass, and weight loss. Consuming caffeine may therefore reduce the risk of diseases like type 2 diabetes or cardiovascular disease that are connected to being overweight or obese.

However, it is unknown how much of these advantages are due to caffeine. According to one study, each additional cup of caffeinated coffee and each cup of decaffeinated coffee taken daily reduced the incidence of type 2 diabetes by 7% and 6%, respectively.

It may be possible to establish dietary guidelines to lower the risk of cardiometabolic disorders by learning more about how caffeine consumption affects their onset.

Recent studies looked into the impact of a genetic propensity for higher blood levels of caffeine. Scientists discovered a relationship between a genetic propensity for greater blood levels of caffeine and a decreased risk for type 2 diabetes.

Slower caffeine metabolism

Data from a genome-wide association meta-analysis of 9,876 people with primarily European ancestry were used by the researchers to conduct this study.

They examined two common genetic variants—CYP1A2 and AHR genes—using the data in their analysis. These genes slow down caffeine metabolism, which means that compared to people who metabolise caffeine fast, those who carry the variations need to drink less coffee to reach increased levels of caffeine in their blood. Moreover, data on body fat, type 2 diabetes risk, and cardiovascular disease risk were gathered by researchers.

In the end, the researchers discovered a relationship between reduced BMI, whole body fat mass, and a decreased risk of type 2 diabetes and genetically predicted greater blood levels of caffeine.

Further investigation revealed that weight loss was responsible for 43% of the protective effect of blood levels of caffeine on type 2 diabetes. They discovered no conclusive correlation between genetically predicted caffeine levels and cardiac diseases such ischemic heart disease, heart failure, or stroke.

Caffeine and weight loss

Dr. Dana Ellis Hunnes, an assistant professor at UCLA Fielding School of Public Health who was not involved in the study and was asked how more caffeine intake may enhance weight loss, said that it stimulates thermogenesis, or heat production, in the body.

When we burn more calories than we consume, we are more likely to lose weight and fat, she said. “Heat production promotes calorie burn.”

Caffeine promotes weight reduction by accelerating the metabolism, according to Dr. Rohini Manaktala, a cardiologist at Memorial Hermann in Houston, Texas, who was not involved in the study.

“This is a dose-dependent phenomenon, meaning that higher coffee consumption results in greater fat and calorie burning, which is reflected in weight loss,” she said. “Caffeine suppresses overeating by stifling a person’s appetite and leading to calorie deficit, which helps to avoid weight gain,” the author writes.

In order to understand how, in addition to promoting weight reduction, caffeine may lower the risk of type 2 diabetes, MNT also spoke with Dr. Mark Guido, an endocrinologist with Novant Health Forsyth Endocrine Consultants in Winston Salem, NC, who was not involved in the study.

He claimed that although there is “mixed” scientific evidence on the subject, caffeine may lower the incidence of type 2 diabetes by changing how the body uses glucose and insulin. Higher blood levels of caffeine, according to the study’s findings, may promote weight loss and lower the risk of type 2 diabetes.


Dr. Guido pointed out important flaws in the study. He explained: “It did not appear to look at elevated caffeine levels through food or drink, but rather at naturally elevated caffeine levels in those with a particular genetic propensity. It is uncertain if these results would apply to elevated caffeine levels in food or beverages.

The study, he continued, did not examine how caffeine affected people who already had type 2 diabetes; rather, it focused on lowering the chance of developing it.

The findings, according to Dr. Hunnes, “are not really causative in nature,” as they only examined the impacts of genes as opposed to the “whole person” in a randomised controlled trial.

She said, “It’s kind of like looking at in vitro, or in a test tube, issues and assuming how it will behave in a human.

In order to fully understand the clinical and health impacts of caffeine, Dr. Manaktala continued, “A more substantial randomised control trial would be desirable. Also, the study subjects were of European ancestry. Extrapolating study results to the American population as a whole becomes difficult as a result.

Genome-Wide Association Research Highlights Connections

Larsson and colleagues used Mendelian randomization to analyse data from a genome-wide association meta-analysis of 9876 people with European ancestry from six population-based investigations.

In people having the two gene variations, greater anticipated plasma caffeine levels were linked to reduced BMI, with one standard deviation more predicted plasma caffeine equating to roughly 4.8 kg/m2 in BMI (P .001).


One standard deviation higher plasma caffeine corresponded to a loss of approximately 9.5 kg in total body fat mass (P .001). The connection with fat-free body mass was not statistically significant, though (P =.17).

The FinnGen project and the DIAMANTE consortia both found genetically predicted higher plasma caffeine concentrations to be linked to a decreased risk for type 2 diabetes (odds ratio, 0.77 per standard deviation increase; P .001) and (0.84, P .001).

In total, there was an increased risk of type 2 diabetes of 0.81 (P .001) for every standard deviation increase in plasma caffeine.

Around 43% of the preventive impact of plasma caffeine on type 2 diabetes, according to Larsson and colleagues, was mediated by BMI.

They did not discover any conclusive links between the risk of any of the examined cardiovascular disease events with genetically predicted plasma caffeine concentrations (ischemic heart disease, atrial fibrillation, heart failure, and stroke).

The thermogenic response to caffeine has previously been calculated as an increase in energy expenditure of approximately 100 kcal for every 100 mg consumed daily, which could lower the risk of obesity. According to the researchers, increased satiety and reduced energy intake are two more potential mechanisms.

They state that “long-term clinical research” studying how coffee consumption affects fat mass and type 2 diabetes risk are necessary. “Randomized controlled trials are needed to determine whether noncaloric caffeine-containing beverages can help lower the risk of type 2 diabetes and obesity.”

The Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare, Swedish Heart Lung Foundation, and Swedish Research Council all provided funding for the study. None of the purported financial connections between Larsson, Lawrence, and Kos are pertinent.


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Medications that Seniors Should Use With Caution.

Medications that Seniors Should Use With Caution.

There is a higher likelihood of developing unfavourable drug side effects in older persons since they frequently have chronic health conditions that call for treatment with several medications. Moreover, older persons may react more strongly to some drugs.

The American Geriatrics Society’s Health in Aging Foundation advises older people to use caution when using the following types of medications. This includes some that can be purchased without a prescription. In order to help you make better-informed decisions about your medications and to reduce your chances of overmedication and serious drug reactions (over-the-counter).

Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs)

Be wary of long-lasting NSAIDS such indomethacin and piroxicam (marketed under the brand name Feldene) (Indocin).

The issue: NSAIDs are prescribed to treat pain and inflammation. Older persons who take them run the risk of developing indigestion, stomach or colon bleeding, renal damage, high blood pressure, and worsening heart failure. They can also increase the risk of blood pressure and kidney damage. The quicker-acting ibuprofen (Motrin) and salsalate are preferable options if NSAIDs are required (Disalcid).

Use caution when combining NSAIDs with aspirin, clopidogrel (Plavix), dabigatran (Pradaxa), dipyridamole (Persantine), prasugrel (Effient), ticlopidine (Ticlid), or warfarin due to the increased risk of bleeding (Coumadin).

You might need to take a prescription medication like misoprostol (Cytotec) or a proton pump inhibitor like omeprazole to prevent stomach bleeding. Only if you regularly take NSAIDs, have a history of ulcers, or are 75 years of age or older. These drugs can help stop stomach bleeding (Prilosec).

Drugs that relax the muscles

Cyclobenzaprine (Flexeril), methocarbamol (Robaxin), carisoprodol (Soma), and other comparable drugs should be avoided.

The issue: These drugs may make you feel sleepy and dazed, raise your risk of falling, and result in constipation, dry mouth, and urine issues. However, there is little proof that they are effective.

Drugs that treat anxiety and sleeplessness

Avoid using benzodiazepines like diazepam (Valium), alprazolam (Xanax), or chlordiazepoxide (Librium, Limbitrol, Librax). Also, nonbenzodiazepine sleeping medications like zaleplon (Sonata) and zolpidem (Ambien).

The issue: Certain medications can make you more likely to fall and can also make you confused, especially in older folks. You may experience drowsiness and grogginess for a long time because it takes your body a long time to eliminate these medications from your body.

Medications for Anticholinergics

Be cautious of: medications including the antidepressants amitriptyline (Elavil) and imipramine (Tofranil). The anti-drug Parkinson’s trihexyphenidyl (Artane), the irritable bowel syndrome drug dicyclomine (Bentyl), the overactive bladder drug oxybutynin (Ditropan) and diphenhydramine, an antihistamine (Benadryl) often included in over-the-counter sleep medicines such as Tylenol PM.

Anticholinergic medications run the risk of causing low blood pressure, constipation, urinary issues, confusion, and other side effects.

Heart Medications

Digoxin (Lanoxin) in doses larger than 0.125 mg should be avoided.

Digoxin, a drug used to treat heart failure and irregular heartbeats, raises safety concerns because it can be harmful for older adults and those with impaired renal function.

Medications for diabetes

Glyburide (Diabeta, Micronase) and chlorpropamide should be used with caution (Diabinese).

These can result in extremely low blood sugar in elderly persons, which is a worry.

Opioids as painkillers

Meperidine (Demerol) and pentazocine should be avoided (Talwin).

The problem: These opioid analgesics, often called narcotic analgesics, can lead to confusion, falls, seizures, confusion, and even hallucinations, especially in elderly people.

Antipsychotic medication

Avoid anti-psychotic medications such haloperidol (Haldol), risperidone (Risperdal), and quetiapine unless you are being treated for schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, or some types of depression (Seroquel).

Antipsychotic medications raise the possibility of a stroke or possibly death; they also raise the possibility of tremors and falls.


Pay close attention to: Estrogen patches and pills, which are frequently prescribed to treat hot flashes and other menopause-related symptoms.

The issue: Estrogen can raise your chances of dementia, blood clots, and breast cancer. Female urine incontinence caused by oestrogens might also become worse.


These medications may be recommended by your doctor to help treat disorders like Parkinson’s disease, irritable bowel syndrome, and depression. Anticholinergics, however, can make people feel confused, have a dry mouth, and have hazy vision, especially in older people.

The likelihood of their causing urination issues is higher in older men. Antihistamines, tricyclic antidepressants, cimetidine, muscle relaxants, and several cold medicines are additional common pharmaceuticals with anticholinergic characteristics.

Ask your doctor the reason for any drug changes or new prescriptions that are made.

For instance, consider if it makes sense to continue taking the medicine that is causing the negative reaction if a new prescription is prescribed to lessen the adverse effects of one you are already taking.

When taking five or more medications already, it is extremely important to ask your doctor or pharmacist to verify any new prescriptions in a database of possible drug interactions.

Review your medication schedule.

Ask your doctor or other health care provider to examine the prescription drugs, dietary supplements, and vitamins you are taking once or twice a year. Check to see if you still need to take each one at the prescribed dosage.

Try to have the same pharmacy fill all of your medications if at all possible. Most pharmacies employ computer programmes that alert them to potential drug interactions.

Inform your medical professionals of any prior drug allergies you may have experienced.


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Dysuria: When It Hurts to Go With the ‘Flow

Dysuria: When It Hurts to Go With the ‘Flow

Dysuria, or painful urination, can occur for a number of causes. When someone urinates, it could ache because of an infection, kidney stones, a cyst, or another illness affecting the bladder or adjacent organs.

This symptom has a wide range of possible explanations, many of which are curable.

Individuals who experience dysuria should inform their doctor of any other symptoms. If these are associated with painful urination, it may be possible for doctors to diagnose the condition and suggest the best course of action.

Causes of painful urination

Urinary tract infections

A urinary tract infection frequently manifests as painful urination (UTI). A bacterial infection may lead to a UTI. Urinary tract irritation may also be to blame.

The urinary tract is made up of the urethra, bladder, ureters, and kidneys. Urine travels from the kidneys to the bladder through tubes called ureters. Any of these organs that are inflamed can induce urinating pain.

UTIs are more common in those who have vagina than in those who have a penis. This is so because people with a vagina have shorter urethras. Bacteria need to travel less distance to reach the bladder if the urethra is shorter.

Urinary tract infections are also more likely to occur in menopausal or pregnant women.

Sexually transmissible diseases (STIs)

Also, if you have a sexually transmitted infection, you might feel pain when peeing (STI). Chlamydia, gonorrhoea, and genital herpes are a few STIs that can make urinating unpleasant.

Due to the fact that STIs are sometimes asymptomatic, it is crucial to get checked for them. STI testing should be done on a large number of sexually active individuals.


Painful urination might be brought on by other medical disorders. Prostatitis, which affects the prostate, can cause painful urinating in men. The prostate gland is inflamed in this syndrome. It is the main source of burning, stinging, and pain in the urinary system.


Urination pain can also be brought on by cystitis, an inflammation of the bladder lining. The term “painful bladder syndrome” (PBS) is another name for interstitial cystitis (IC). The most typical kind of cystitis is this one. Pain and tenderness in the bladder and pelvic area are IC symptoms.

Radiation therapy occasionally results in pain in the bladder and urethra. Radiation cystitis is the name of this condition.


The condition known as urethritis denotes inflammation of the urethra, typically brought on by bacterial infection. In addition to frequently causing pain while urinating, urethritis can also increase the urge to urinate.


Epididymitis, or inflammation of the epididymis in people with a penis, can also result in painful urination. Sperm from the testes are stored and transported by the epididymis, which is situated behind the testicles.

Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID)

PID can have an impact on the uterus, cervix, ovaries, and fallopian tubes. Among other symptoms, it can lead to painful urination, painful intercourse, and abdominal pain.

PID is a severe infection that typically results from a bacterial infection that starts in the vagina and spreads to the reproductive organs.

Uropathy with obstruction

Urine flowing back into the kidneys is known as obstructive uropathy, which is caused by an obstruction in the ureter, bladder, or urethra. Regardless of the cause, it’s critical to get medical attention as soon as symptoms appear.

Similar problems with urination and pain can be brought on by another disorder called urethral stricture, which causes the urethra to narrow.

Renal stones

If you have kidney stones, it could be uncomfortable for you to urinate. The urinary tract contains masses of hardened material called kidney stones.


Painful urination is a side effect of various drugs, including some antibiotics and cancer treatments. Discuss any possible pharmaceutical side effects with your healthcare professional.

Hygiene items

It’s not always an infection that causes painful urinating. Moreover, it could be brought on by genital product use. Vaginal tissues can become particularly irritated by soaps, lotions, and bubble baths.

Dyes in laundry detergents and other personal care items can irritate and contribute to health problems such as dysuria.

Differences in males and females

Both sexes can experience pain during urinating, and the causes may depend on the anatomy.

For instance, female urethras are shorter than male urethras. This makes it easier for germs to enter the bladder, which can result in UTIs.

A person might discuss with their doctor the likelihood that they will experience painful urinating based on their sex and medical history.

Treatment options for painful urination

The initial step before receiving therapy will be to identify the source of the pain.

To address painful urinating, your doctor could prescribe medication. UTIs, some bacterial infections, and some STIs can all be treated with antibiotics. Also, your doctor might prescribe you medicine to soothe your agitated bladder.

If you start taking medicine, painful urination brought on by a bacterial infection typically gets better quite soon. Take the medication exactly as directed by your doctor every time.

Certain infections, like interstitial cystitis, can cause pain that is more difficult to treat than others. The effects of pharmacological therapy could take longer. Before you start to feel better, you might need to take medicine for up to 4 months.

Prevent painful urination

There are lifestyle adjustments you can undertake to help with symptom relief.

  • Avoid using scented toiletries and laundry detergents to lower your chance of irritation.
  • When engaging in sexual activity, use condoms or other barrier techniques.
  • Eliminate foods and beverages from your diet that can irritate the bladder (such as highly acidic foods, caffeine, and alcohol).
  • Drink plenty of water.

When to see a doctor

Get in touch with your doctor:

  • if the discomfort is ongoing or severe
  • if you are expecting
  • There is fever and ache together.
  • if you develop vaginal or penile discharge
  • your urine smells strange, contains blood, or is cloudy
  • if abdominal discomfort is present along with the pain
  • if you expel a kidney or bladder stone

To help identify the source of the pain, your doctor may request lab tests and inquire about any further symptoms.


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Depression may increase stroke risk, and stroke recovery.

Depression may increase stroke risk, and stroke recovery.

The World Health Organization (WHO) claims that depression is the main cause of disability in the globe. At least 5% of adults are affected, with more women than males reporting symptoms of depression.

Symptomatic depressed individuals are more likely to have a stroke, and their recovery from one is frequently more challenging, according to a multi-national study.

According to this study, persons with depressive symptoms had a 46% higher risk of having a stroke than those without such symptoms.

Over 280 million people worldwide suffer from depression. 10.4% of women in the United States experience depression, which is almost twice as frequent in women as it is in males, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Psychological signs of depression include a continuously downbeat attitude, a sense of worthlessness, a loss of interest in enjoyable pursuits, trouble concentrating, and even suicidal thoughts.

In addition, physical symptoms including exhaustion, an inability to eat, headaches, chronic pain, and digestive problems may be brought on by sadness.

Moreover, depression and cardiovascular disease (CVD) have been connected in research; one studyTrusted Source found that individuals with coronary heart disease who were depressed had an increased risk of dying.

An international study that was just published in Neurology discovered that those who experience depressed symptoms had a higher chance of both ischemic and hemorrhagic stroke, as well as a worse recovery after a stroke.

What is a stroke?

A stroke happens when a blood vessel in the brain bursts and bleeds or when the blood supply to the brain is cut off. Blood and oxygen cannot reach the brain’s tissues because of the rupture or obstruction.

Stroke is a primary cause of death in the US, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). More than 795,000 Americans experience a stroke each year. Brain tissue and cells are damaged and start to die within minutes of being oxygen-deprived.

Strokes often come in three different forms:

  • Temporary ischemia. A blood clot causes a transient ischemic attack (TIA), which normally resolves on its own.
  • Ischemic stroke. It involves an obstruction in the artery brought on by a clot or plaque. The signs and problems of an ischemic stroke may persist permanently or linger longer than those of a TIA.
  • Hemorrhagic stroke. A blood vessel that seeps into the brain either bursts or leaks, which is the source of the condition.

Strokes are often fatal. According to the American Heart Association (AHA), there were 37.6 age-adjusted deaths for every 100,000 stroke diagnosis in 2017. This fatality rate is 13.6% lower than it was in 2007 thanks to medical advances in the treatment of strokes.

What is a Depression?

Depression is basically a common but serious mental disorder, medically termed as Major Depressive Disorder which negatively affects a person’s way of thinking, how the person feels and behaves. This mental disorder is different from mood fluctuations. In addition to causing emotional and physical problems, it can also make it difficult for you to function at work and at home.

Despite the existence of effective treatments for mental disorders, more than 75% of people in low- and middle-income countries do not receive any treatment. There are several barriers to effective mental health care, including a lack of resources, a lack of trained health-care providers, and social stigma associated with mental illness. People with depression in countries of all income levels are frequently misdiagnosed and prescribed antidepressants even when they do not have the disorder.

Details from the stroke and depression study

In total, 26,877 adult study participants from 32 nations in Europe, Asia, North and South America, the Middle East, and Africa participated in the study.

As a neuroscientist and associate professor at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, Dustin Hines, PhD, stated to Healthline, “This work represents a tremendous achievement in the knowledge of both stroke and depression. “When considered in light of how variable the group of patients suffering from depression is, the statistically significant difference between responders who reported depression before the stroke is even more impressive.”

According to research, 13% of the 13,000 participants who experienced a stroke also had depressive symptoms. Depression was prevalent among those who had no stroke, at 14%.

Increased stroke risk

When compared to people who did not have a stroke (14%), those who had one were more likely to develop depressive symptoms (18%). Those who admitted to having “given up on improving their lives” were at higher risk of suffering a stroke.

Those who had symptoms of depression had a 46% higher risk of stroke than those who did not experience such symptoms, even after the researchers made adjustments for age, sex, education, physical activity, and other lifestyle factors.

The correlation between depressive symptoms and stroke was discovered to be constant across all country economic levels. Stroke risk was increased in people with four or more symptoms of depression than in those with fewer symptoms.

In response to this research, Dr. Benesch stated that “this link between more severe depression and stroke risk is undoubtedly worthy of further examination and may be clinically meaningful.”

“One analogy would be that we are aware that lung cancer is brought on by smoking. We also know that daily smokers have a higher risk of developing lung cancer than smokers who only smoke sometimes (once every six months). Hence, he continued, “it would seem that there is a dose-response relationship.

The study also discovered that although strokes in those with depressive symptoms were not more severe, their outcomes one month after the stroke were worse.

Depression and CVD or stroke

Depression and heart disease and stroke have already been associated in a number of studies.

A 2011 meta-analysis of 17 research revealed that depressive disorders considerably increased the probability of having a stroke, and that the increase was likely independent of other risk factors like diabetes or hypertension. This study was unable to establish a causal relationship, nevertheless.

The same year, a bigger meta-analysis that examined 28 prospective cohort studies came to the conclusion that depression is prospectively linked to a considerably higher chance of having a stroke.

In 2020, a different study discovered that persons who had depressive symptoms had a higher risk of developing heart disease or having a stroke later on.

Despite the association’s modest size, it was nonetheless noticeable among those who did not exhibit depressive disorder-like symptoms.

How depression affects people who’ve had a stroke?

“Depression is not unusual for people following a stroke, I’ve discovered in my experience with stroke patients,” Waichler continued. “Both the stroke sufferer and their loved ones may suffer greatly from the loss of independence, physical limitations, restrictions on one’s capacity for self-care, and probable cognitive and communication problems. A person’s willingness or the requisite amount of resolve to fully engage in the recovery process may be adversely affected by depression. The outcome could be worse as a result and the stroke recovery could be hindered.

The biggest unsolved question in the study, according to Karen Sullivan, PhD, a neuropsychologist and the creator of the I Care For Your Brain website, is “What is it about depression particularly that enhances the risk of stroke?”

“The range of depressive symptoms includes the cognitive, emotional, and physical. Knowing which particular factors were most closely associated to stroke risk would be really beneficial, Sullivan told Healthline. “Even though the study filtered out typical characteristics linked with depression that could confound the results like low physical activity, there are lots of additional lifestyle risks that go along with depression that could have affected the results including bad diet, low socialising, not enough cognitive stimulation, inflammation, [and] noncompliance with medical guidance,” the study’s authors write.

According to Sullivan, the most significant lesson that patients, healthcare professionals, and the general public should learn from this study is the value of depression screening.

In addition to enhancing a person’s general health and quality of life, she added that recent research suggests that treating depression also lowers the chance of stroke. Large-scale, long-term studies are required, and it is important to understand whether effective therapy lowers the risk of stroke in order to demonstrate a more causal link between depression and stroke.

The apparent next step, according to Hines, is to search for widespread biomarkers that may be connected to metabolic issues and attempt to assist patients before they experience a stroke.


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keto-like diet may be linked to heart attack and stroke.

keto-like diet may be linked to heart attack and stroke.

Researchers looked into whether high-fat, low-carb diets similar to the ketogenic diet raise cardiovascular risk.

Diets that resembled ketosis were associated with twice as many cardiovascular events as regular diets.

The findings need to be confirmed by other research.


Around 10% of daily calories should come from carbohydrates, 30% from protein, and 60% from fat according to the ketogenic or “keto” diet. The diet causes a condition known as “ketosis,” in which the body starts using fat for energy instead of carbohydrates.

According to some research, a ketogenic diet may aid in weight loss, increase the susceptibility of cancer cells to chemotherapy and radiation treatment. Also, it lower blood sugar levels in diabetics. Yet, case studies indicate that the ketogenic diet may aggravate or fuel elevated cholesterol.

Further research on the impact of ketogenic diets on cardiovascular health may help people choose the right diet for their health profile.

Recent research examined the potential effects of low-carbohydrate, high-fat (LCHF) diets. These are similar to keto diets, on cardiovascular risk under the direction of Dr. Iulia Iatan, an attending physician-scientist at the Healthy Heart Program Prevention Clinic, St. Paul’s Hospital, and the University of British Columbia’s Centre for Heart Lung Innovation in Vancouver, Canada.

According to the study, as compared to a conventional diet, an LCHF diet nearly doubled the risk of cardiovascular events. The study was presented at the ACC Annual Scientific Session along with the World Congress of Cardiology. Its a conference co-hosted by the American College of Cardiology and the World Heart Federation.


In order to conduct the study, the researchers examined data gathered by the UK Biobank for individuals. Theyincluded information on food habits, metabolomic indicators, and blood lipid levels.

In a 24-hour food survey, all participants had tracked their dietary habits. 305 of them met the requirements for an LCHF diet. This is known as getting more than 45% of daily calories from fat and less than 25% from carbohydrates.

1,220 people who were deemed to be on a “regular diet” and made up the control group were matched with these participants by the researchers. The average age of the participants was 54 years. They were classified as “overweight” because of their mean body mass index (BMI), which was around 27.

What is a Ketogenic diet?

Ketogenic diets are low-carb diets (such as the Atkins diet). The goal is to get more calories from protein and fat and less from carbohydrates. The carbs that are easy to digest, like sugar, soda, pastries, and white bread, are the ones you cut back the most on.  

By reducing carbohydrate intake drastically, fat is replaced. When you reduce carbs, your body enters a state called ketosis. As a result, your body burns fat extremely efficiently for energy. Additionally, it converts fat into ketones in the liver, which can supply energy to the brain. Diabetes and insulin levels can be reduced significantly by ketogenic diets. In addition, the increase in ketones has some health benefits.

Low-carb, high-fat diets and cardio risk

“LDL cholesterol and ApoB will increase when people switch their caloric intake from carbohydrates to fat, especially if the saturated fat comes primarily from animal products. Dr. Liam R. Brunham, associate professor of medicine at The University of British Columbia and one of the study’s authors, told Medical News Today that this has been known for decades.

“What our study revealed is that the effect is not consistent, but that there is a segment of individuals who would experience severe hypercholesterolemia [abnormally high cholesterol levels] when on an LCHF diet. This is the category in which the largest rise in cardiovascular risk was found, the expert added.

Although she was not engaged in the study, Dr. Dana Hunnes, an assistant professor at UCLA’s Fielding School of Public Health, told MNT that “[t]his type of diet is supposed to be utilised short-term, primarily in those who have seizure disorders or neurological diseases as ketones can pass across the blood-brain barrier.”

“A keto diet is strong in saturated fats (usually), animal products, and may boost cholesterol levels as well as cause inflammation and stress,” she said.

“A low-carb, high-fat diet […] similarly tends to be low in carbohydrates and fibre and high in animal products and saturated fats. These characteristics might affect the microbiome, raise cholesterol levels and inflammation in the body, and raise the risk of heart disease, she added.

Keto worries

Michelle Routhenstein, a nutritionist who specialises in heart health and runs the online private practise Completely Nourished, was also interviewed by MNT. She informed us that the study supports her own findings.

“This study confirms what I see in my private practise, [as] many people come to me after being on the ketogenic diet for several months with very high LDL and apolipoprotein A levels, two crucial [factors] that contribute create risk for atherosclerosis,” she said.

Routhenstein issued a warning: “The keto diet can be quite high in saturated fat and low in soluble fibre, which negatively influences both of these parameters.

keto diet and risks to our heart health

According to Yu-Ming Ni, M.D., a cardiologist with MemorialCare Heart and Vascular Institute at Orange Coast Medical Center’s Non-Invasive Cardiology, ketogenic diets, or “keto,” are diets that are high in fat and low in carbohydrates—so low in carbohydrates, in fact, that it causes your body’s metabolism to break down fat and turn it into energy. The ability of keto diets to burn fat has been researched as a weight loss strategy, he continues. Several studies have revealed that high-fat, low-carb diets often result in worse cardiovascular outcomes than plant-based, high-carb, low-fat diets. This has raised a lot of controversy. This study expands on those findings.

So, precisely how can a ketogenic diet impact your heart health? It turns out that there is higher inflammation with keto diets in general. High fat diets are often more inflammatory, and Dr. Ni adds that inflammation is a crucial element in controlling cardiovascular health and disease. “We clearly have evidence of the pro-inflammatory characteristics of red meat or processed meat diets.”

In general, ketogenic diets raise your cholesterol as well. This is primarily because the foods you are consuming already have high cholesterol levels, but Dr. Ni also points out that long-term adherence to a high-fat, low-carb diet can have an impact on your cholesterol levels. He says that “high cholesterol is the number one factor that causes attacks and strokes to develop.”

Study limitations 

Dr. Brunham pointed out that the study reveals association but not causation when questioned about the study’s flaws.

Those following the LCHF diet and those following the normal diet had different BMIs, obesity rates, and diabetes statuses, he continued, potentially skewing the results.

In other words, it’s possible that individuals in the UK Biobank who reported eating an LCHF diet had a higher chance of developing heart disease due to their genetic makeup rather than the diet itself. To truly comprehend this, we would need more sorts of research, such randomised trials, he said.

Additional limitations of the study include the fact that diet and cholesterol levels were only recorded at one time point, according to Dr. John P. Higgins, a sports cardiologist at McGovern Medical School at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston who was not involved in the research.

Additionally, he questioned if people who follow standard diets are indeed following a “standard” diet or whether they are generally a healthier population.


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The natural peptide could help tackle obesity and diabetes.

The natural peptide could help tackle obesity and diabetes.

Smaller versions of proteins known as peptides can serve a variety of functions. This includes the potential to lessen the effects of ageing, reduce inflammation, or stimulate the creation of new muscle.

In 2015, scientists made the discovery of a kind of peptide known as PEPITEM and recognized its role in the adiponectin-PEPITEM pathway. It controls the onset and severity of autoimmune or chronic inflammatory disorders.

The potential for this peptide to provide a game-changing treatment for numerous diseases has just been discovered by new study in animal models.

The study suggests that the peptide may reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes and. Other illnesses are connected to obesity, like fatty liver disease.

Obesity alters the metabolism of adipose (fat) tissue significantly, damages the pancreas, reduces insulin sensitivity, and finally results in hyperglycemia (high blood sugar), which is the primary cause of type 2 diabetes.

It also causes a low-grade inflammatory response throughout the body. This encourages the infiltration of white blood cells into a variety of tissues, including visceral adipose tissue. It is a deep-lying fat deposit that surrounds organs like the liver and gut, as well as the peritoneal cavity, a thin membrane that encloses the gut.

According to a recent study, the adiponectin-PEPITEM pathway connects obesity, the related low-grade inflammatory response, and changes in the pancreas that take place before the onset of diabetes. The study was published in Clinical and Experimental Immunology.

To see if the effects of a high-fat diet on the pancreas could be avoided or even reversed, the researchers used a mouse model of obesity and a slow-release pump to inject the peptide PEPITEM.

When PEPITEM was given to mice on a high-fat diet, the researchers discovered that this significantly decreased the size of the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas. Also, the quantity of white blood cells in the visceral adipose tissue and peritoneal cavity as compared to the control group.

Small protein impacts some effects of obesity

The adiponectin-PEPITEM pathway, which is important in regulating the onset and severity of auto-immune and chronic inflammatory illnesses, is where the peptide employed in this study plays a part.

Obesity can have a variety of negative impacts on the body. This includes altering the metabolism of adipose tissue (fat), harming the pancreas, decreasing insulin sensitivity, etc. Ultimately causing the high glucose levels associated with type 2 diabetes.

But, it also triggers a low-grade inflammatory response, causing white blood cells to flow into visceral adipose tissue, which surrounds organs like the liver and gut, as well as into the area of the abdomen that houses the intestines, stomach, and liver (peritoneal cavity).

In the latest research, which was released on March 9 in the journal Clinical and Experimental Immunology, mice were administered PEPITEM in addition to a high-fat diet.

The size of the pancreatic beta cells that produce insulin was reduced in mice who received the peptide as compared to those who did not. Also, they noticed a reduction in the quantity of white blood cells in the peritoneal cavity and visceral adipose tissue.

“Our results show us that PEPITEM can both prevent and reverse the impact that obesity has on metabolism,” study author Asif Iqbal, PhD, an associate professor at the University of Birmingham’s Centre of Cardiovascular Sciences, said in the release.

The next step, he continued, is to transform these promising findings into human-useable treatments.

Reversing obesity

Dr. Christoph Buettner, an endocrinologist and professor of medicine at the Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School in New Brunswick, New Jersey, told Healthline that experts have known for many years that obesity and diabetes are connected with elevated inflammation.

In contrast, “although in mice various medications that particularly lower inflammation have demonstrated to also reduce obesity and diabetes, in humans—where obesity is also typically related with inflammation—the facts are much less clear,” he noted.

The current study’s findings imply that PEPITEM may be effective in lowering some of the negative consequences of obesity, including the growth of insulin-producing beta cells and the accumulation of white blood cells in particular regions.

Yet, mice given PEPITEM still put on weight when given a high-fat diet. The researchers added that there was “no effect” on fasting glucose tolerance or insulin resistance, both of which are impacted in type 2 diabetics.

“To me, that suggests that this is an anti-inflammatory treatment that is unlikely to have a meaningful effect on either obesity or high blood sugar,” said Buettner.

Aiding in type 2 diabetes prevention

This could “potentially be a useful additional tool for patients regarding the prevention or treatment of type 2 diabetes, especially as related to the decrease in enlargement of the beta cells,” according to Nicole Anziani, a registered dietitian, certified diabetes care and education specialist, and senior clinical manager for Cecelia Health who was not involved in the study.

For the purpose of examining PEPITEM’s effects on obesity, Anziani noted that the mice used in the study were fed a high-fat diet either before or during the administration of PEPITEM.

Anziani emphasised that it’s crucial to recognise that obesity has a complex aetiology, which means it can be brought on by a variety of variables and isn’t always related to a high-fat diet. Moreover, Anziani emphasised that obesity was “more than just a biological phenomenon.”

Discovering the root of obesity

While it’s great that there are more options for patients to help with the biochemical aspects of obesity and preventing systemic inflammation, especially when there may already be pancreatic damage present, Anziani told us that it’s also crucial to acknowledge the behavioural and social aspects related to the development of obesity and other related ailments.

To properly understand these pathways, she continued, “additional research into the relationship between inflammation and obesity is still needed.” “Although this therapeutic strategy is being examined to get to the underlying cause of obesity-related disorders,” she noted.

While stating that “additional studies would be required,” Dr. Bosa-Osario concurred and said that “the findings appear encouraging.”

PEPITEM might be a useful treatment target for additional causes, he added. “While the body can make a bioprotein comparable to PEPITEM, it can be made in a lab and administered to patients. He remarked, “That’s exciting.

Currently authorised effective weight loss medications

Several medications have previously been approved to treat obesity, but more research is required to determine whether PEPITEM will be useful in the management of illnesses linked to obesity, such as type 2 diabetes.

This contains semaglutide, a type of medication known as a GLP-1 agonist (brand names Ozempic, Wegovy, and Rybelsus). Those who took semaglutide in clinical trials saw weight loss and a decrease in inflammation. In one trial, participants lost up to 14.9% of their starting weight.

Yet according to Buettner, “it does not imply that [these drugs] function by reducing inflammation” because they aren’t often thought of as anti-inflammatory medications. As an alternative, “they function in the brain to decrease appetite and balance the autonomic nerve system,” he said.

Some medications also have side effects, including nausea, diarrhoea, vomiting, and stomach pain. Buettner is therefore concerned about whether people will be able to handle these medications over the long term, which may be necessary to assist people in maintaining a healthy weight throughout their lives.

That’s why other medications to treat obesity are still needed, he added, including ones that function through different mechanisms than GLP-1 agonists and don’t have the adverse effects of those treatments.

According to Buettner, “for now, the tolerance for the adverse effects is still high, but with time, patients may become dissatisfied with the [lower enjoyment of eating food].”


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Explore the worst habits for your joint pain.

Explore the worst habits for your joint pain.

Wear anything intermittently all day, every day for decades. Also, it will eventually begin to exhibit signs of wear and tear. As an illustration, consider the cartilage that serves as a bolster between your bones.

According to Angelie Mascarinas, M.D., a physiatrist at the Hospital for Special Surgery with headquarters in New York City, the risk of acquiring osteoarthritis, a degenerative joint condition, rises with age. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis and affects around 50% of persons over the age of 65.

There is little you can do to stop time from moving forward. However, there are many lifestyle adjustments you can make to give your joints some extra TLC.


Despite the fact that you probably don’t need one more, here is one to stop smoking: Your joints experience damage from smoking. When nicotine constricts blood vessels, less oxygen and vital nutrients can reach the joint cartilage. This affects the health of the cartilage. Due to the fact that cartilage gets its nutrition from the fluid around the joint and the nearby bone, Mascarinas explains that this may cause cartilage to deteriorate.

Other than that: As it turns out, smoking increases your chance for osteoporosis, a condition that causes brittle bones. Seniors who smoke are 30 to 40% more likely than nonsmokers to shatter their hips, according to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons.

A physically inactive lifestyle

There are several ways that sedentary behaviours are detrimental for your joints. According to a study in Arthritis & Rheumatology that monitored more than 1.7 million people for more than four years, it is difficult to maintain a healthy weight and excess pounds are harsh on your joints, especially those in the hips, hands, and knees. Knees are particularly prone to injury. Almost three to five times as many participants who were obese, defined as having a body mass index of 30 or greater, developed knee osteoarthritis. According to one study, decreasing 1 pound of body weight relieved the knees of 4 pounds of pressure.

Regular sitting “also causes muscle tension in the hips and legs and weakens the muscles that stabilise the core,” according to Mascarinas.

Aim for 30 minutes of joint-friendly activity five days a week to counteract everything mentioned above. Walking, water aerobics, and swimming are a few moderate, low-impact sports that are gentle on the joints, according to Mascarinas. Avoid deep lunges and squats, jogging, repeated jumping, and sports like basketball and tennis. These acitivities require quick twists and abrupt stops if you have osteoarthritis.

Overdoing exercise

Weekend warriors pay attention: Your joints won’t benefit from trying to fit a week’s worth of workout into one weekend. A skilled orthopaedic foot and ankle specialist in Indianapolis once observed, “There’s a good medium between training our muscles and not overdoing the load on the joints.

According to studies, people with arthritis who maintain healthy muscles do a significantly better job of managing their condition. By combining strength training with cardiovascular exercise, you can find the sweet spot. Professionals assert that even 70, 80, and 90-year-olds can still experience positive muscle reactions from weight-training routines. According to research, it’s simpler to perform daily tasks like getting out of a chair, climbing and descending stairs, and potentially even lowering one’s body temperature.

Carrying a heavy load

It should come as no surprise that heavy lifting wears down your body, whether you’re carrying a fully-loaded tote bag every day or picking up your growing grandchild on those once-a-month visits. And it exacts a specific toll on your joints. “Carrying objects that are heavy creates imbalance throughout the body,” as said by professionals. Additionally, these imbalances “create torque or stress on the joints, which over time may further deteriorate the cartilage.”

Of course, determining a “heavy” load is the tricky part. According to experts, “any amount of weight that requires more than one hand to pick it up” should be taken into account. When lifting or carrying objects, be safe and use the palms of both hands, or use your arms in place of your hands, advises a professional organisation. Hold goods close to your body, which is less stressful for your joints.

Eating foods that cause inflammation

All the usual suspects are on the table: red meat, white sugar, French fries, Coke, and pastries. According to doctors, eating these foods can make joint pain worse. However, foods high in omega-3 fatty acids, such flaxseed oil and cold-water fish like salmon and mackerel, are thought to be anti-inflammatory and can help soothe inflamed joints. According to a study published in Rheumatology, which identified a connection between high cholesterol and knee and hand osteoarthritis, leafy greens are also advised, as are cholesterol-lowering foods like almonds, pistachios, and walnuts.

If you have joint pain, a specialist advises including foods like olive oil, berries, and salmon in your diet. According to her, studies have also shown a link between foods high in beta-carotene, fibre, magnesium, and omega-3s and decreased inflammation. Limiting pro-inflammatory foods like red meat, sweets, and dairy can also lessen joint discomfort, according to research.

Bad posture

While sitting posture is crucial for joint health, excellent posture should be adopted constantly. For instance, when walking, make careful to maintain a straight back, a set of level knees, and a set of backward-facing shoulders. Your joints will experience less strain as a result, which will make them less susceptible to fatigue and deterioration. Consider utilising seat cushions or lumbar supports when you have to sit for extended amounts of time to assist your spine stay in the right position.

Strength Training Ignored

We lose bone mass as we get older, which increases our susceptibility to fractures and diseases like arthritis. Fortunately, consistent strength training reduces the pace of bone deterioration and may even stimulate the formation of new bone. For this reason, it’s a good idea to include a few strength exercises to your normal exercise programme. You can still workout even if you have limited mobility. Use these seated chair exercises in your everyday regimen by trying them out.

Taking a Nap on Your Stomach

Even though everyone has a varied sleeping pattern, some are better for our bones than others. While both sleeping on your back and your side have advantages and disadvantages, sleeping on your stomach is the worst for your spine’s health. This makes us turn our necks while we sleep, which puts tension on our muscles and bones. Moreover, it causes longer-lasting vertebral pinching. Positioning pillows are a terrific tool to maintain your body in the right position during the night and relieve pressure from troublesome regions.

Finger Texting

De Quervain’s Tendonitis, also referred to as “texting thumb,” is a condition that develops over time as a result of repetitive motions like typing or texting that wear down your joints. Although it pays to be aware of how it’s impacting your body, it doesn’t imply you should quit doing it. Avoid using your thumbs for texting as much as you can to save the joint there from further stress. Instead, text with the tips of your other fingers.

If you already suffer from Texting Thumb, try wearing a thumb splint to decrease symptoms.

Excess weight

Obese or overweight people are more likely to get joint problems in their ankles, knees, and hips. The cause is rather straightforward—since each of these joints must support a higher weight, they all tend to deteriorate more quickly. There are many simple actions you may do to live a better lifestyle and lose weight; take a look at these:

  • Put on a fitness monitor.
  • Engage in daily exercise
  • Log your calorie consumption while working with a dietitian.
  • Work with a personal trainer
  • Track & Monitor Your Progress at Home
  • Establish manageable, gradual goals.

High-Heel Shoes

Even the most comfortable pair of heels can be just as detrimental for your joints as an uncomfortable pair of shoes. They affect everything from your ankles, to knees, to your lower back, creating extra strain on all these joints as you walk. Even an increased risk of osteoarthritis might be experienced by women who regularly wear high heels. While obviously not a cure, high heel insoles can assist to reduce some pain and distribute weight – if you must wear heels, consider A Pair of These for some protection.

Reduce Joint Pain

You can enhance your joint health by changing bad habits in addition as cutting back on them. To take control of your joint discomfort, try these solutions.

  • The best option for people seeking an immediate relief from joint discomfort is Pain Cream. To feel its effects, simply rub it where it is required.
  • Simple remedies like ice packs and heating pads can help speed up the healing process and lessen acute pain. Using them prior to or following exercise is extremely beneficial.
  • The ideal technique to guarantee that you receive the support you require while jogging or walking is using insoles. They encourage a healthy walk while reducing any current joint pain.
  • Compression items, such compression gloves and compression knee braces, are an excellent technique to relieve joint discomfort while stabilising the joint to prevent more joint pain.



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