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fitness

‘Fitness Helped Me Find Myself After I Left My Arranged Marriage’

Kingston mum Saima Husain, 40, found her confidence – and her calling – in the gym.


I fell in love with sport in junior school – netball, softball, rounders… I even did Irish dancing. I was good at sport, and my classmates always picked me first for any team. I really loved that – it made me feel special. I grew up in quite a strict home and wasn’t really allowed to go out and play with my friends. When I was at school, playing sport, that was the only time I could really socialise and have fun.

I had an arranged marriage when I was 19, in December 1999. I had spent 5 minutes with him before we got married. We had two children by 2003. But my husband and I just weren’t compatible, and our relationship fell apart. I have nothing against arranged marriages, but we just weren’t the right fit. There was no real love there. By 2006, I just couldn’t do it anymore. I took my kids and left.

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I got a job as a sales assistant in a shoe shop. Being South Asian, as a single mum, I was very much frowned upon for leaving my husband. It was an incredibly tough time, and I battled with severe depression and anxiety.

I wanted something just for me – something that made me feel accomplished, like I was achieving something. So I joined my local gym. Exercise and fitness became my safe place – where I could be my own person.

It was the only thing I felt was mine.

I was still very self-conscious, so I started off on the cardio machines. They all faced the windows, so I didn’t have to look at anyone – or see anyone looking at me – while I exercised.

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But the trainers were all lovely, and there was one in particular who took me under his wing. He coaxed me away from the treadmill, gave me free 10-minute boxing sessions, and gave me a basic resistance circuit I could follow. For about 3 months I would just repeat the same circuit every single day!

Initially, I had the usual motivations; I wanted to lose a bit of weight and tone up, and after the first few months, my body did start to change (I dropped about 3 dress sizes) – but my outlook changed even more. I found that I was chasing goals, rather than a certain body type.

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fitness

Find the perfect gift for your fitness enthusiast

If you’re like most people, this year has been uniquely challenging for keeping up with personal health and fitness. However, you can find a lot of new home gym equipment that can keep you on track to finish this year strong or to set an early New Year’s resolution. Here’s a gift guide of all the best eBay fitness deals for this holiday season.

Fitnessclub Folding Treadmill

There’s nothing more synonymous with a home gym than the time-tested treadmill. This fitness machine can handle all of your cardio needs including running up to 8mph with programmable target calories, distance, and time. The Fitnessclub 2HP Treadmill also features a convenient folding design that allows you to store it out of the way when not in use.

Right now you can add this reliable home gym equipment and save 20% on treadmills. eBay offers a wide selection of treadmills for sale including folding treadmills, electric treadmills, and cheap treadmills. You can also shop used treadmills on eBay for an even better discount. 

Totall Adjustable Dumbbell Set

If space is a limited commodity and versatility is a must-have in your home gym, then check out the Totall Adjustable Dumbbell Set. This pair of dumbbells provides up to 66 pounds of resistance training and can be adjusted to suit your weightlifting progress. These dumbbells take up very little space, but provide an incredible workout value.

Pick up a dumbbell set at eBay for 15% off. You can also find other top brands of adjustable dumbbells at eBay like PowerBlock and Bowflex. The types of dumbbells for sale on eBay include iron, sand-filled, or water-filled weights.

Fitness Tracker Smart Watch

Tracking your health progress can be a powerful motivator for your fitness journey. This Fitness Tracker Smart Watch delivers some high-tech features at a very competitive price. With built-in activity tracking, heart rate monitoring, and sleep tracking, this Fitness Smart Watch can provide you with lots of insight on your workout and daily habits. In addition, it’s compatible with both iPhone and Android devices so it pairs seamlessly with your smartphone.

Save 43% on Fitness Trackers when you shop at eBay.

5 Piece Resistance Band Set

Resistance Bands offer a wide variety of exercises and movements you can add to your workout routine. This Resistance Band Set comes in 5 different options ranging from as low as 5 pounds to 40 pounds of resistance. These are super portable fitness equipment that you can take anywhere at any time. With this Resistance Band Set, you can improve your strength or even rehabilitate an existing injury.

If you’re looking for a unique training gift, buy a set for less than $10 at eBay.

Non-slip Yoga Mat

With all of the stress and commotion that 2020 has brought, it’s nice to have a healthy outlet for both your mind and body. There are few activities better than yoga when it comes to relaxing your mind and strengthening your body. This Yoga Mat is just what you need to

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medicine

Penn Medicine researchers find link between food insecurity and cardiovascular death risk

PHILADELPHIA–Food insecurity is one of the nation’s leading health and nutrition issues–about 13.7 million (10.5 percent) of households in the United States were food insecure at some time during 2019, a trend likely to increase in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. According to preliminary research conducted by researchers at Penn Medicine, increasing rates of food insecurity in counties across the United States are independently associated with an increase in cardiovascular death rates among adults between the ages of 20 and 64.

The large-scale, national study, which will be presented at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions 2020, provides evidence of the link between food insecurity and increased risk of cardiovascular death. This is one of the first national analyses to evaluate changes in both food security and cardiovascular mortality over time, and to see if changes in food insecurity impact cardiovascular health. The findings were also published today in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.

“This research gives us a better understanding of the connection between economic distress and cardiovascular disease,” said Sameed Khatana, MD, MPH, senior author of the study and instructor of Cardiovascular Medicine in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania. “What’s going on outside the clinic has significant impact on patients’ health. There are many factors beyond the medications we may be prescribing that can influence their wellbeing, food insecurity being one of them.”

Researchers analyzed data from the National Center for Health Statistics and the Map the Meal Gap study, to examine county-level cardiovascular death rates and food insecurity rates from 2011 to 2017, among adults age 20 to 64, and those 65 years and older.

The researchers found that while the overall food insecurity rates for the entire country declined between 2011 and 2017, the counties that had the most increase in food insecurity levels had cardiovascular death rates that increased from 82 to 87 per 100,000 individuals. Additionally, for every 1 percent increase in food insecurity, there was a similar increase in cardiovascular mortality among non-elderly adults (0.83 percent).

“There has been a growing disparity when it comes to food insecurity, and this data demonstrates that parts of the country are being left behind. Unfortunately, this may only get worse as the country grapples with the ramifications of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Khatana said. “However, interventions that improve a community’s economic wellbeing could potentially lead to improved community cardiovascular health.”

The authors intend to study whether interventions that improve food insecurity can lead to better cardiovascular health.

###

The abstract will be presented in Session QU.AOS.765 Social Determinants of Cardiovascular Health on November 13, 2020, at 9:00 am CST/10:00 am EST.

Penn co-authors include, Atheendar S. Venkataramani, Christina A. Roberto, Lauren A. Eberly, and Peter W. Groeneveld, along with Yale’s Stephen Y. Wang.

Penn Medicine is one of the world’s leading academic medical centers, dedicated to the related missions of medical education, biomedical research, and excellence in patient care. Penn Medicine consists of the Raymond and Ruth Perelman School of Medicine at

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fitness

Fitness equipment is hard to find. Here are tricks for buying and selling

Kyle Bennett’s beat-up, 10-year-old Giant Faith mountain bike sat in his garage unused for months. The industrial designer from Santa Cruz paid $450 for it a year before and had thoroughly thrashed it. So he put it up for sale on Facebook Marketplace.



diagram: (Steven Banks / Los Angeles Times; Getty)


© Provided by The LA Times
(Steven Banks / Los Angeles Times; Getty)

In one hour, his post got 60 replies.

Perhaps even more surprising? His asking price was $600.

“The bike was gone in two hours,” he says. “A guy drove 100 miles and handed me cash, with no bargaining. But if I’d been patient, I easily could have gotten $1,000 for it. People were bidding. In the pandemic, people post bikes for outrageous prices — and are getting them.”

Today, with gyms mostly closed due to the pandemic, people are desperate to stay fit. But they can’t get new bikes and fitness equipment. Bike shops are all sold out. Buying new dumbbells and weight benches is practically impossible.

The solution: Go online and buy and sell used stuff.

There are lots of websites, from bicycle-specific sites like BikeExchange.com, BicyleBluebook.com and PinkBike.com to general sites like Facebook Marketplace, OfferUp.com, CraigsList.org and LetGo.com.

Cleaning out your garage has never been this lucrative.

You know that old beach cruiser with flat tires hanging in the rafters that you couldn’t dump for 50 bucks? Now hose it off, pump the tires, shine it up with Pledge and get $250 for it!

If you’ve got old dumbbells and weight plates lying around, you may be sitting on a gold mine. The going price of $1 a pound jumped to $3 a pound or more when the gyms closed, according to Anthony Duke, a PE teacher and football coach from Murrieta, who has become a weight equipment expert in the last three months while buying and selling on OfferUp.com.

“Done right, that old $10, 10-pound dumbbell will now get you $35,” he says. “Old weights I bought online for $50 I’ve sold for $500. Two 25-pound bumper plates — which have the rubberized coating that you can drop on the floor — got me $900. The trick is making it look as good as possible.”

Duke picks up discarded weights anywhere he can — other online sellers, the city dump, trash cans, in the dank corner of garages at estate sales. He paid 20 cents a pound for weights dumped by the Yorba Linda Fire Department. Then the refurbishing begins. He soaks them in vinegar, scrubs with a steel brush and S.O.S. pad to remove rust, spray-paints them black and uses a fat sharpie to paint the raised letters and numbers white. He’ll reupholster $150 weight benches and sell them for $500.

The same strategy works for bikes. Duke’s next-door neighbor Stephen Nelson, who was a non-cyclist in February, turned himself into an expert rider and mechanic during the pandemic, buying, rehabbing and selling a dozen mountain bikes and beach cruisers on OfferUp.com and LetGo.com.

“Used bikes are the new

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health

Researchers find new deadly inflammatory disease, NIH says

National Institutes of Health (NIH) researchers reported a newly discovered deadly inflammatory disorder last week.

“We had many patients with undiagnosed inflammatory conditions who were coming to the NIH Clinical Center, and we were just unable to diagnose them,” Dr. David Beck, a clinical fellow at NHGRI and lead author of the paper, said in a news release. “That’s when we had the idea of doing it the opposite way. Instead of starting with symptoms, start with a list of genes. Then, study the genomes of undiagnosed individuals and see where it takes us.”

CLICK HERE FOR FULL CORONAVIRUS COVERAGE

The team examined over 2,500 people with undiagnosed inflammatory diseases and assessed over 800 genes involved in cells’ regulatory processes, per the release.

In doing this, they found one mutated gene, UB1, causing the syndrome dubbed VEXAS for “vacuoles, E1 enzyme, X-linked, autoinflammatory and somatic syndrome.”

Nearly half the patients under study died from the serious condition, researchers said. (iStock)

Nearly half the patients under study died from the serious condition, researchers said. (iStock)

“So far, 40% of VEXAS patients who the team studied have died, revealing the devastating consequences of the severe condition,” per the release. The disease involves blood clotting, repeated fevers, heart issues and problems with blood cells, called myeloid cells.

Findings were published in the New England Journal of Medicine.

FDA WARNS AGAINST DIY CORONAVIRUS TREATMENT USING OXYGEN CONCENTRATOR

“Our objective was to see if any of the 2,560 patients shared variations in the same gene,” Dr. Daniel Kastner, scientific director of the Intramural Research Program at NHGRI and a senior author of the paper, said in a news release. “Instead of looking at clinical similarities, we were instead taking advantage of shared genomic similarities that could help us discover a completely new disease.”

Of the 2,560 patients, researchers said 1,000 had repeated fevers and widespread inflammation. Three men had the mutated gene in the X chromosome; men have one X chromosome and one Y chromosome, while women have two X chromosomes.

Researchers found “mosaicism” among the affected patients, which happens when some cells carry the gene in its mutated form, and other cells carry the gene in its normal form, per the release. Ultimately, 25 total men across other NIH databases showed to have the mutated gene with similar symptoms: blood clotting, repeated fevers and heart issues, among others.

“By using this genome-first approach, we have managed to find a thread that ties together patients carrying all of these seemingly unrelated, disparate diagnoses,” Kastner concluded.

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health

Coronavirus crowd study: German researchers find ‘glimmers of hope’ after inviting thousands to indoor concert in Leipzig

In one scenario modeled by the scientists, the infection risk for participants and their contacts was around 70 times lower when health and safety instructions were followed, compared with what it could have been under pre-pandemic behavior.

“A concert or handball game with a strictly enforced safety protocol is safer than the participation in a big wedding,” said Michael Gekle, the dean of the medical department at the Martin Luther University of Halle-Wittenberg, who was involved in the research.

The scientists’ conclusions are based on an experiment that drew around 1,400 people to an indoor concert simulation in August, hosted in one of the country’s largest venues in the eastern German city of Leipzig.

The researchers from the Martin Luther University of Halle-Wittenberg, a public institution, used tracking devices to gather data on the movements and behavior of participants, all of whom had to test negative for the virus to be allowed to participate. Over the following two months, the data gathered during the day-long experiment in August was fed into a computer simulation to estimate the hypothetical spread of the coronavirus for varying safety protocols and infection rates.

Finding a balance between economic incentives to fill a venue as much as possible and safety constraints to limit the risks was the main goal of the experiment that looked at three scenarios.

In the first, participants — while still wearing masks — pretended that the pandemic did not exist, allowing the researchers to create a detailed computer simulation of a concert with no social distancing and with an auditorium at full capacity.

In the second scenario, organizers imposed light social distancing rules and reduced the number of participants. This scenario, the researchers said Thursday, would provide sufficient safety to hold indoor events up to an infection rate of 50 new cases per 100,000 people within a week. Germany deems regions that cross this threshold as risk areas.

Events could still be held with infection levels above that rate, the researchers found, but only if organizers were to follow stringent distancing, as modeled in a third scenario.

In all three scenarios, participants had assigned seats.

The researchers cautioned that participants’ safety largely depends on face masks and on indoor ventilation systems, which were both found to play a critical role in preventing infections.

Germany already approved a $580 million program last month to improve ventilation systems in museums, theaters and other spaces. As long as no effective vaccine has been widely distributed more funding for ventilation will be needed, said Stefan Moritz, who headed the experiment. “This pandemic won’t be over in a few months,” he said.

In the lead-up to the concert, the prospect of the experiment sparked hate mail and accusations that it would become a superspreader event, but the researchers said Thursday that the concert had resulted in no known infections.

The release of their findings Thursday came at a pivotal time in Germany, and one day after Chancellor Angela Merkel announced a month-long partial national lockdown this

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dentist

How to Find a Good Dentist | Patient Advice

Karen Vasso, a 43-year old farmer from Chelmsford, Massachusetts, takes good care of her health. In addition to the copious amounts of physical exercise she gets while working, she’s an avid swimmer and triathlete, who’s completed a few solo 12.5-mile swims around Key West in Florida. She also has a background in nutrition and knows that good dental health is an important aspect of overall wellness. She’s long sought to make visiting a dentist regularly a priority. However, a couple of bad experiences over the years have caused her to think carefully about what makes a good dentist and how to find the right one for her.

The first incident occurred several years ago. At the time, Vasso was a single mother and her health insurance wasn’t terribly robust, so her options of which dentist she could see were limited. “I went to this quiet, dark office in the basement of a building” in a nearby town. The office was mostly empty, save for the dentist himself, and Vasso recalls thinking, “this is scary.” Undeterred by her gut intuition, she went through with the appointment. “He cleaned my teeth and at the end he said, ‘you have a cavity. I’m going to need you to come back for a filling.’ I know my teeth. I have extensive knowledge about nutrition and how that affects dental health,” and she says she suspected she didn’t actually have a cavity.

She asked the dentist to show her on the X-ray where the cavity was. “He kind of backed out of it. He had nothing, so I left and never went back. Because he was the only dentist my insurance covered, I didn’t go to the dentist for several years,” she says.

Fast forward a few years to a new town and new health insurance, and Vasso decided it was time to do something about the lack of routine dental care she’d had for the past couple of years and scheduled an appointment with a local dentist. She opted for “a very big chain dental practice” that was in her insurance plan and made an appointment for a cleaning. “They did a cleaning and a cursory exam and told me I had six cavities. It blew my mind – there’s no way I have six cavities,” she says, feeling outraged.

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Before she was even able to get clarification on where and how severe these cavities were, she’d been herded to the front desk to settle her bill and make several more appointments for additional dental work. Vasso decided she didn’t trust that dentist and made an appointment elsewhere for a second opinion. As suspected, that subsequent dentist confirmed she had no cavities at all, let alone six of them. “Can you imagine them drilling into my teeth for no reason? It blows my mind,” she says.

While Vasso’s experience may be extreme, it illustrates how important it is to find a dentist you can trust. “The dentist has an obligation to be

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fitness

Can’t find a leg extension machine? Rakul Preet Singh shows an alternative in her 4 am fitness video – fitness

Making us enter the week with rejuvenated enthusiasm for fitness is Bollywood diva Rakul Preet Singh’s latest workout video. Currently in Hyderabad, the actor was seen up and sweating at 4:57 am to burn calories sans excuses.

Taking to her Instagram handle, Rakul gave health freaks a sneak peek into her intense exercise session where she showed a perfect alternative if one can’t find a leg extension machine. Nailing the exercise routine, Rakul was seen using a bench for leg extension workout in the absence of a machine.

The video featured Rakul donning a blue printed tank top teamed with a pair of black tights having sheer detailing. Pulling back her hair in a high ponytail hairstyle to that they do not mess with her exercise routine, Rakul completed the athleisure dressing with a pair of black gloves to create resistance and a pair of black lace-up trainers.

Placing her hands firmly on the floor with her legs high up on the bench, Rakul worked on her quadriceps which is the large muscles of the front of the thigh. She captioned the video, “Excuses don’t burn calories (sic)” and we cannot agree more.

 

The quads are the biggest muscle in the human body and strong quads are important for a good posture, walking and squatting. The leg extension strengthens the quadriceps while also engaging the muscles in the core, butt, hips and lower legs.

It strengthens the patellar ligament and quadriceps attachment for the knee even as they are notoriously difficult to develop or tone. Bending and straightening the leg from the knee are the two basic movements of this exercise.

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health

South Korean officials find no direct link between flu vaccine and recent deaths

The country’s government has rolled out a flu vaccine campaign, concerned about the potential simultaneous spread of coronavirus and influenza.

At least 36 people have died after taking flu vaccinations since last Friday, including a 17-year-old. The average age of those who died was 74, according to the South Korean Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA).

As of Friday, more than 14 million people had gotten the flu vaccine, of which 9.4 million were children, elderly, and pregnant women, according to the KDCA.

Ki Moran, a professor at South Korea’s National Cancer Centre, said the flu vaccine is known to cause serious side effects in one out of 10 million people.

In 2019, 227,000 people over the age of 65 died in South Korea, she added. That’s an average of 621 deaths a day, to put the recent figures into perspective.

The KDCA decided on Friday not to suspend the flu vaccinations. The vaccination expert committee will hold a meeting Saturday morning to review additional data, according to a KDCA statement.

Rare side effects

This might be your most important flu shot ever

The KDCA’s Friday meeting came after rising scrutiny from experts and politicians.

On Friday, South Korean Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun called for a thorough investigation into the deaths, citing public anxiety, according to a press release by the Health Ministry. He did not call for a halt to the vaccination campaign.

The Korean Medical Association, a coalition of 130,000 doctors, has urged the government to suspend the vaccination program for a week until they determined the cause of the deaths.

In a statement, the Korean Vaccine Society emphasized the importance of the flu vaccine, especially “for children, the elderly, and patients with chronic diseases and low immune system.” The organization cited concerns about the possible spread of flu during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Experts globally are preparing for flu season in the middle of the pandemic. “This is a critical year for us to try to take flu as much off the table as we can,” said Dr. Robert Redfield, director of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, in an interview with the AMA’s JAMA Network.

One reason is to decrease the strain on public health services and hospitals, which are bracing for a winter wave. Experts say it possible to get Covid-19 and the flu simultaneously — and, because flu symptoms look so similar to that of Covid-19, it will be impossible to rule out a coronavirus diagnosis without a test. That means a case of the flu can cause substantial disruption to work and school.

In South Korea, Covid-19 has infected 25,775 people and killed 457, according to Johns Hopkins University.

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health

To Find a Coronavirus Vaccine, GlaxoSmithKline Is Bonding With Its Biggest Competitors

The Covid-19 pandemic is turning some fierce drug-industry foes into the best of frenemies.

The pharmaceutical giant standing at the center of this team of rivals is

GlaxoSmithKline


GSK 0.57%

PLC, the world’s largest vaccine maker by sales. The British company is jointly developing a Covid-19 antibody drug with a San Francisco upstart, offering rivals a proprietary ingredient that is designed to boost a vaccine’s power and planning to share research study results.

“We felt this very unusual situation required something that GSK hadn’t done before, and something we hadn’t seen in the industry before either,” says Roger Connor, president of Glaxo’s vaccines business.

What makes Glaxo’s collaboration so unusual is that competition typically defines the relationship among drugmakers. Company researchers race to be first to bring a new kind of therapy to market or work on treatments that can outdo older medicines, while marketers roll out campaigns designed to boost sales at the expense of rivals.

In the age of Covid-19, old adversaries are uniting around a common enemy: the new coronavirus. Their nascent partnership is now visible in everything from trials to research to manufacturing. Glaxo and eight other pharmaceutical firms even took the rare step of issuing a joint pledge last month to seek regulatory approvals for their vaccines only after proving their safety and effectiveness in large, final-stage clinical trials.

How far along each of the vaccines are

Testing stages typically move from ‘preclinical,’ before the vaccine is deemed appropriate to test in people, to the three phases of human clinical trials.

So far, 44 candidates have made it to clinical trials.

Type of vaccine

Viral vector

Ten of these have advanced into phase 3, which tests whether the dose that would be given to the public works safely.

The most common area of cooperation thus far is manufacturing. Some longtime rivals are striking deals to stretch their capacity to meet anticipated demand. Roche Holding AG is helping manufacture an antiviral drug in development by rival Regeneron.

Amgen Inc.

will help make

Eli Lilly

& Co.’s antiviral drugs if the treatments are authorized by regulators.

Pfizer

has dedicated manufacturing capacity to turning out doses of remdesivir, an antiviral made by rival

Gilead Sciences Inc.

The camaraderie also extends to the traditionally cutthroat realm of research.

Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc.

scientists contributed to research on a vaccine in development by

BioNTech SE

and Pfizer Inc., and were co-authors on a paper this summer detailing the results. In another rare move,

Merck

& Co.’s research and development chief called his Glaxo counterpartment in April to pass along a tip that one of Glaxo’s molecules showed promise in Merck’s Covid-19 lab tests.

Glaxo’s most prominent contribution to this new era of collaboration is its decision to share a proprietary vaccine component known as an adjuvant—an ingredient that helps boost a vaccine’s protective power by rousing the body’s immune response. Glaxo now has agreements to supply that ingredient to four vaccine developers, including French drugmaker

Sanofi SA,

and stands ready to

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