MANHATTAN: UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has called for the implementation of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, which protects the rights of some 1.5 billion people around the world.
He was addressing a conference of signatories to the Convention at UN Headquarters in New York on Tuesday, describing it as one of the most widely-ratified international human rights treaties, which reaffirms that people with disabilities are entitled to the same treatment as everybody else. “But signing and ratifying the Convention is not enough. Implementation is essential,” Guterres said. “Societies must be organized so that all people, including those with disabilities, can exercise their rights freely.”
The Secretary-General underscored that countries apply the Convention to their development policies, investments and legal systems, which is an important step “if we are to fulfill the central pledge of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development: to leave no one behind.” “We cannot afford to ignore or marginalize the contributions of 1.5 billion people,” he stated, pointing out that more had to be done for people with disabilities to fully participate in society.
People with disabilities still often face overt discrimination, stereotyping and lack of respect for their basic human rights with women and girls disproportionately affected. “Every minute, more than 30 women are seriously injured or disabled during childbirth,” elaborated the UN chief. Moreover, women and girls with disabilities face multiple barriers to accessing education, health services, and jobs.
A relevant piece published earlier: Living a healthy lifestyle can cut down the risk of having ‘end-of-life’ disability. This was discovered by the scientists in their fresh evaluation. Oldies with the healthiest lifestyles could anticipate spending some 1.7 fewer years disabled at the closing stages of their lives as compared to their unhealthy peers. The study lead author from the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health in the US, Professor Anne Newman held: “The duration of the disabled period near the end of one’s life has enormous personal and societal implications, ranging from quality of life to health care costs.” She further added: “We discovered that, fortunately, by improving lifestyle we can postpone both death and disability. In fact, it turns out that we’re compressing that disabled end-of-life period.” Newman along with her colleagues here have looked over the records, which is gathered by the Cardiovascular Health Study, comprising on some 5,888 US adults having the age of 65 and so. The scientists here have reported their findings online in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society (Aiman Inam). (Published on 2nd October 2016)
Eating dark chocolate cuts stress boosts memory
ISLAMABAD: Consuming dark chocolate can reduce stress and inflammation, as well as improve memory, immunity, and mood, a new study said.
This is due to the high concentration of cacao a major source of flavonoids. The flavonoids found in cacao are extremely potent antioxidants and anti-inflammatory agents, with known mechanisms beneficial for brain and cardiovascular health, the researchers said, reported health news.
“For years, we have looked at the influence of dark chocolate on neurological functions from the standpoint of sugar content the more sugar, the happier we are,” said lead investigator Lee S. Berk, from Loma Linda University in California, US.
“This is the first time that we have looked at the impact of large amounts of cacao in doses as small as a regular-sized chocolate bar in humans over short or long periods of time, and are encouraged by the findings,” Berk added. Further, dark chocolate was also found to affect human gene expression.
It regulates cellular immune response, neural signaling, and sensory perception. Cacao consumption up-regulates multiple intracellular signaling pathways involved in T-cell activation, cellular immune response and genes involved in neural signaling and sensory perception – the latter potentially associated with the phenomena of brain hyperplasticity.
“These studies show us that higher the concentration of cacao, the more positive the impact on cognition, memory, mood, immunity and other beneficial effects,” Berk noted.
For the trial, the team for the first time examined the impact of large amounts of cacao in doses as small as a regular-sized chocolate bar in humans over short or long periods of time.
A relevant piece published earlier: Be it on ice creams or sweet dishes, dark chocolates are hard to resist. From kids to grown-ups, everyone can live on the chocolates no matter what. And now pundits give us another reason to imbibe those! Good news for chocolate buffs! Consuming dark chocolates could potentially shield our brains from age-related pressure and swelling, revealed a study. Oxidative stress and inflammation boost as we age. And both are the origins of mounting neurodegenerative disarray like Alzheimer’s disease. They located a flavanol known as epicatechin (Epi) in dark chocolate that has the potential to diminish detrimental oxidative stress and neuroinflammation. The research and outcomes: Scholars from the University of California San Diego in the US conducted this experiment on mouse model. They assessed male mice for two weeks. The samples of their heads have been assembled for the evaluation of pertinent endpoints. The review of the OS markers protein carbonyls and malondialdehyde levels demonstrate major boosts with aging that are restrained by Epi. Apart from reducing the levels of oxidative stress and neuro-inflammation among old mouse, Epi also perked-up reminiscence and anxiety levels. It is pertinent to point out here that one should always choose dark chocolate sans added sugars or flavors and consume it in moderate quantities. (Published on 25th April 2017)
Drinking water may boost mental skills in exercising elderly
ISLAMABAD: Older people who indulge in physical activity should increase their amount of water intake, to reap the full cognitive benefits of exercise, a study said.
“Middle-aged and older adults often display a blunted thirst perception, which places them at risk for dehydration and subsequently may reduce the cognitive health-related benefits of exercise,” said researchers including Brandon Yates, of Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital in Boston, US, reported private news channel. The study, presented at the American Physiological Society (APS) annual meeting at Experimental Biology 2018 in San Diego, explored the association between hydration status before exercising and exercise-enhanced cognition in older adults.
The team recruited recreational cyclists (average age 55) who participated in a large cycling event on a warm day (78-86 degrees F). The cyclists performed a “trail-making” executive function test quickly and accurately connecting numbered dots using paper and pencil before and after the event. The team tested the volunteers’ urine before they exercised and divided them into two groups normal hydration and dehydrated based on their hydration status.
The normal hydration group showed noticeable improvement in the completion time of the trail-making test after cycling when compared to their pre-cycling test. The dehydration group also completed their post-cycling test more quickly, but the time reduction was not significant.
China’s progress on HIV/AIDS prevention hailed!
BEIJING: With its strong leadership, innovation, and partnership, China has made huge progress in fighting AIDS, UNAIDS executive director Michel Sidibe said during his visit to China
As an advocate of the vision of zero new HIV infections, zero discrimination, and zero AIDS-related deaths, Sidibe hailed China’s efforts in boosting the accessibility of anti-AIDS drugs and medical treatment in recent years at his meeting with China’s UNAIDS branch and partners Wednesday.
China recorded a total of 747,000 people with HIV by September 2017 and around 542,000 HIV-positive people had received medical treatment by the end of June, according to the National Center for AIDS/STD Control and Prevention. “China’s effort in fighting AIDS is exceptional, given its huge population base,” UNAIDS country director and representative to China Amakobe Sande said.
“What impresses me most is that when China commits, it delivers.” To build a “healthy China,” China has launched national AIDS campaigns in recent years. By the end of 2017, China had almost stopped HIV spread through blood transfusion and effectively controlled infection through hypodermic needles and from mother to child during pregnancy.
UNAIDS pledges to work toward the goal of ending the AIDS epidemics by 2030 as well as the widely-adopted 90-90-90 target – by 2020: 90 percent of people living with HIV know their status, 90 percent of people who know their status receive treatment, and 90 percent of people on treatment have a suppressed viral load.