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Chicken Development – From the Cradle to the Grave

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Chicken Development – From the Cradle to the Grave

The beauty about eating eggs is that there are virtually hundreds if not thousands of recipes to use in preparation. My personal preference has not been meat really – but actually a combination of eggs and vegetables that has been part of my staple diet from sometime now.

The controversy regarding eggs containing way too much cholesterol was something that most of us, my age, were blissfully unaware of while the events surrounding “bird flu” were only laughed when some friends would pass up on foods that contained eggs.

Yet this matter of rearing chickens to produce eggs organically is a matter that cannot be ignored, and is probably the only way to do it right… both for the sake of our health as well as the chicken’s as well.

Which begs the question: How do these eggs land on your table, all ready to eat?

In understanding this question, you will also be able to figure out which type of eggs are good or if they are good at all, but before that, here’s a note on eggs itself.

Are Eggs Good Nutrition?

If there’s anything that’s true about eggs, it is the fact that this food is probably one of the best sources of protein.

Regardless of the controversy surrounding the large amounts of cholesterol in an egg, and which doesn’t affect us negatively, there are numerous other reasons why eggs are an excellent source of nutrition for us.

In fact, it has been discovered that eggs when eaten with moderation actually improves one’s cholesterol and heart health. Better still is the impact that eating eggs for breakfast has on weight loss.

Interestingly, there’s another unmet need that eggs can handle, and this is the nutrient known as choline that most Americans miss out on.

Yet all these obvious benefits can come to nothing, thanks to the unhealthy ways in which these eggs are produced by the obvious neglect in chicken development.

Is Chicken Development the Organic Way Healthy?

To put it simply, the answer to this question is a resounding ‘yes’. The problem with keeping them for days in a cage might lead to greater productivity (and profits) for farmers but it is the consumer that suffers, thanks to this being an unhealthy way of rearing chickens.

It’s cruel, to say the least.

With the watchword being “battery cages” that are anything but inspiring… think about it: Would you like to be put in a cage yourself?

Anyways, with more attention being given to the way these animals are treated, farmers are now switching to humane chicken development, despite dwindling profits.

Natural feed and the freedom to roam is all that activists ask for, and it seems that they’re getting it so that aficionados of raw eggs can start their morning with no worry.

Usually most chickens end up laying at least one egg a day for at least a year until they can “perform” no more to be killed and sold food. That’s just the way it goes.

These chickens lay at least 12 eggs (known as a clutch) and move on to the next stage of brooding, but for the farmer taking away at least one egg when the chickens are, quite literally, out of sight.

Then, the chicken lays another egg or two to bring that number up to 12, and this process continues until their numbers dwindle.

Of course, the farmer than checks the eggs collected for blemishes or any deficiencies, and the package and send the best eggs to the supermarket where you find and buy them at a price.

In Closing

And as recommended by experts, the best eggs are those that are reared organically or are also known as free-range chicken eggs…

Health

Symptoms of Underactive Thyroid

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Symptoms of Underactive Thyroid

According to Greek mythology, Zeus created woman to be the source of man’s greatest temptation and suffering. Right from the black widow spider to the “preying” mantis that kills its male counterpart after the periodic mating ritual proves once again that the female of the species is, indeed, deadlier.

Even the Bible blames the woman in Genesis for being the one to fall into temptation by eating from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, while dragging poor Adam down with her.

Interestingly, medicine too borrows conceptually from this Biblical story by referring to the lump (for more than one reason) in every man’s throat as the Adam’s apple. And perhaps this laryngeal protrusion which is present in every man (but not in women!) speaks of their inability to hide their guilt. Ahh, kidding! But a world without women (playing that delightful temptress role as they do) would really be pointless!

Right below this thyroid cartilage (known as the Adam’s Apple) lies one of the largest endocrine glands in the human body, commonly referred to as the thyroid.

Thyroid

Its shape resembles that of a butterfly, that has two wings labeled as the lobus dexter and lobus sinister that is connected via the thyroid isthmus. While its primary function is to collect iodine from the intake of foods and convert it into thyroid hormones such as thyroxine (T4), triiodothyronine (T3) and calcitonine.

Once T3 and T4 are produced, they are released into the bloodstream and which has a major role (that is related to growth and production) as every cell in the body depends on these two hormones to regulate metabolism.

Apart from regulating metabolism (growth & production), the thyroid gland also regulates blood calcium levels, energy, excess fats, hormones, oxygen and weight loss.

However, this is what happens when your thyroid gland functions in a healthy manner but in the case of extremes, where these hormones are either produced in excessive quantities (hyperthyroidism) or in very less amounts (hypothyroidism), one can experience health issues that can be considered anything but healthy.

Symptoms of Hypothyroidism

In the case of hypothyroidism, the T3 and T4 hormones are produced in negligible (or insufficient quantities). If a person has this kind of thyroid disorder, it is important that one looks out for both early and late symptoms, as the malfunction of this endocrine gland can be cause of a wide range of health issues.

Some of the early signs are:

  • Fatigue
  • Muscle hypotonia (poor muscle tone)
  • Cold intolerance (increased sensitivity to cold)
  • Muscle cramps and joint pain
  • Constipation
  • Depression
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Goiter
  • Thin and brittle fingernails and hair
  • Decreased sweating
  • Paleness
  • Osteporosis
  • Dry & itchy skin
  • Weight gain & Water Retention
  • Low heart rate (lesser than sixty beats per minute)

Some of the late signs are:

  • Dry puffy skin (visible on the face)
  • Thinning of the outer third of the eyebrows
  • Abnormal menstrual cycles
  • Low basal body temperature
  • Slow speech – a hoarse breaking voice

In emphasizing that the healthy functioning of the thyroid gland is imperative to staying healthy, it is in one’s best interests to get a checkup if one suspects these early or late signs.

In Closing

And if you aren’t still convinced if women are indeed a touch more lethal than they’re made out to be, dig a little into the lives of Caesar and Anthony, and find out who they adored in common! Ah, the first ever modern (and empowered) woman in the history on (wo)mankind…

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Immune Suppressants: Freedom at a price…

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Immune Suppressants: Freedom at a price…

Introduction

The word ‘freedom’ is used very lightly these days by all and sundry and can be compared to the way people use the word ‘sorry’. In my book, people who understand the meaning of these words use them wisely, and at a time when it is truly appropriate.

What is freedom? Do you actually believe that you live in a free world? Who decides whether you are free or not?

In my opinion, nothing can be further from the truth. Suppression is all around us existing in both subtle and open forms.

Take for example, censorship! Right from your mom telling you that it isn’t socially acceptable to use ‘bad language’  to the government that lies through its teeth to keep people ‘disinformed’, it exists everywhere.

People tell you not to see this, read that, watch this and hear that because it is BAD for you, and for a good part of our lives, we tend to buy into stuff like that until that phase popularly known as ‘the age of reason’ comes along sooner and in the case of some people, much much later.

The reality of suppression (as opposed to freedom) is that it exists in every breath and moment, and thus, being truly free is only an ideal that most of us can pretend to live for, and perhaps in understanding the truth in that, nihilism becomes our last resort.

Yes it even exists in medicine in the form of immune suppressants, although in this case, they work towards a positive purpose in order to ‘free’ someone from a particular medical condition.

Immune Suppressants and reasons for use

By definition, immune suppressants “reduce the activation and efficacy of the immune system”.

They are used in the case of autoimmune diseases for which the immune system is responsible for causing the condition in the first place as well as when organ transplants are carried thus making it vulnerable to other infectious diseases. They are also used to treat non-auto immune diseases such as long term allergic asthma.

Types of immunosuppressive drugs

Immune suppressants exist in two forms such as immunosuppressive drugs that are produced externally and introduced to the patient while the other form are substances (such as testosterone) that are produced by the body.

Further, they are divided into five groups such as:

1) Glucocorticoids – Used to suppress allergic, anti-inflammatory, auto-immune diseases.

2) Cytostatics – Used for the treatment of malignant diseases.

3) Antibodies – Used as a quick and strong form of immunotherapy in order to prevent acute rejection reactions.

4) Drugs acting on immunophilins – Ciclosporin,Tacrolimus, Voclosporin and Sirolimus are some of the most commonly used drugs as calcineurin inhibitors.

Any patient who is on these drugs must be very careful not to take any other medication (unless prescribed by a physician) as there are chances of reactions between the immunosuppressant drug and the medication.

In Closing

In the cure of the aforementioned illnesses, side effects due to the vulnerability of the immune system are possible such as the spread of malignant cells (cancer-prone) and other infectious diseases. No matter what your definition of freedom, it sure does come at a price alright. For more articles, please visit Fitbuff.com

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Hashimoto’s Hypothyroidism: The Difference

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Hashimoto’s Hypothyroidism: The Difference

Introduction

Watching Tom Cruise give a startling performance in “The Last Samurai” and even one of his recent performances as a Senator in “Lions for Lambs” has led me believe that he is still one of the best actors around in commercial cinema.

Despite his controversial beliefs (in Scientology), it was his performance in the first movie that fascinated me, as he reveals his own personal fascination for the Samurai way of life. Perhaps, I found his acting prowess so riveting as I share that fascination myself in Oriental philosophy and how they lead their lives in the pursuit of one goal: to perfect whatever they believe is what they were meant to do.

Another aspect of Oriental culture has always fascinated me, one which has its roots in health and medicine, and even though China has been shown to prominent in their forays into medicine, Japan has contributed no less.

Hashimoto’s Hypothyroidism

Hashimoto Hakaru, who worked under Hayari Miyake (the Japanese neurosurgeon), has been instrumental in contributing to the field of medicine in discovering what was known as an “independent illness” in those days, and is commonly known as Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism (now known as an autoimmune disease), one of the biggest causes for people to suffer from hypothyroidism these days.

But one might ask: What is an autoimmune disease?

Very simply, it is when the immune system attacks substances, tissue and organs that are normally present in the body. Strangely enough, the immune considers its own cells to be a harmful foreign substance that needs to be eliminated by the release of its antibodies.

In the case of Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism, the immune system attacks the thyroid gland (also medically known as “chronic lymphocytic thyroiditis”). It is due to these attacks that an inflammation occurs, and thus this state of inflammation causes hypothyroidism (an underactive thyroid gland).

However, there are some differences between Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism and regular hypothyroidism, which is what we will look at next.

Differences between Hypothyroidism & Hashimoto’s Disease

Difference #1: Hashimoto’s disease is am autoimmune disease (as obvious as that statement is!) that is the cause of hypothyroidism that follows as a result of the thyroid gland being damaged while regular hypothyroidism is a condition by itself.

Difference #2: Hashimoto’s disease works as a cause (and is one of the most common causes) for hypothyroidism, while regular hypothyroidism is a result of a underactive thyroid or a thyroid that does not function at all.

Difference #3: Hashimoto’s disease is a cause for the thyroid gland to either switch between the conditions of hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism whereas regular hypothyroidism doesn’t switch to either extreme but remains at just one extreme.

Difference #4: While both Hashimoto’s disease and regular hypothyroidism can be treated with suitable drugs, the former is a permanent condition and can result in you taking medication that supplies the deficient hormones due to the chronic condition that has been developed.

Difference #5: Hashimoto’s disease can lead to other illnesses such as Lupus, diabetes and Grave’s disease while hypothyroidism isn’t necessarily a condition that lasts for a lifetime.

In Closing

Since this disease can occur to anyone at any age while hypothyroidism occurs to people in their 50s, it is always a good idea to watch out for symptoms that might indicate the presence of this disease. Remember, Hashimoto’s disease does not have a cure by but increasing the levels of iodine through medication one can find the way to lead a normal life.

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