While cold hands are a common occurrence during winter, some people have cold hands throughout the year. Under usual circumstances, cold hands are a result of body’s natural response during cold temperatures. The body’s priority is to keep itself warm. It instinctively takes the warm blood from extremities and draws it towards your core in order to protect lungs, heart and other organs protected. Cold hands despite normal temperatures could be because of an underlying condition. Anemia, vitamin deficiency, autoimmune conditions and hypothyroidism are possibly to be blamed.
Reasons why your hands are cold
Lack of hemoglobin to carry oxygen rich blood to your hands may result in cold hands. Anemia can also make you feel fatigued and week. Iron deficiency is the top cause of anemia. Eating these iron-rich foods can help in dealing with anemia and cold hands.
2. Cold temperatures
It is well-known that cold temperatures cause cold fingers. But you must be careful about frostbite. Frostbite is referred to the freezing of skin and underlying tissues. On being exposed to extremely cold temperatures, frostbite can develop on bare skin within minutes. In case frostbite progresses past first stage, it is likely to cause permanent damage to skin, muscles, tissues and bones. People with poor blood circulation in hands, Raynaud’s syndrome or other health conditions are at increased risk of frostbite.
3. Raynaud’s syndrome
This is a condition which causes some areas of the body, especially your fingers, to feel inappropriately cold and numb. This condition results in attacks of unusually cold and numb fingers. Raynaud’s attack causes arteries to narrow down, preventing blood from circulation properly. It can even cause the skin to change colours to blue and red. As the attack ends, the fingers get back to normal, making you feel a swelling, throbbing and tingling sensation. The condition requires no treatment, but in case you feel discomfort because of cold hands, you can visit your doctor who will prescribe medications to widen blood vessels and improve blood circulation.
4. Vitamin B-12 deficiency
Deficiency of vitamin b-12 could be the reason you have cold hands so often. Vitamin B-12 deficiency can cause neurological problems like numbness, coldness and tingling sensation in hands and feet. People with deficiency of Vitamin B-12 are at risk of anemia, weakness, fatigue, soreness of mouth and depression. Food sources of Vitamin B-12 include fish, meat, eggs, dairy, dairy products and poultry.
This chronic autoimmune disease which can cause inflammation, could be the reason for your cold hands. Lupus occurs when body’s immune system mistakenly attacks its own tissues and organs. Lupus can result in inflammation all over the body including kidneys, skin, joints and blood cells.
An underactive thyroid maybe the reason why you are hands are cold. The condition does not result in cold fingers but increases a person’s sensitivity to cold. Hypothyroidism occurs when your thyroid does not produce enough hormones. It can cause weight gain, fatigue, puffy face, dry skin, hair loss, depression, heart disease, obesity and infertility.
Smoking affects blood circulation, which could be the reason why you have cold hands. Smoking is extremely hazardous to healthy and is one of the top causes of cancer.
How to warm up cold hands?
1. Try doing some jumping jacks to keep your blood pumping.
2. Put your hands under your armpits to benefit from the warm blood in your core.
3. Keep your fingers closer to each other.
4. Use mittens instead of gloves for extra warmth.
5. Run your hands under warm water until they feel better and then dry them fully.
6. Holding hot cup of tea can help in warming up your cold hands.
Coffee compounds may help fight prostate cancer
In a first, scientists have identified compounds found in coffee which may inhibit the growth of prostate cancer. The study, published in the journal The Prostate, was carried out on drug-resistant cancer cells in cell culture and in a mouse model. Coffee is a complex mixture of compounds which has been shown to influence human health in both positive and negative ways. There is increasing evidence that drinking certain types of coffee is associated with a reduction in incidence of some cancers, including prostate cancers.
Researchers from Kanazawa University in Japan have studied the effects of two compounds found in coffee, kahweol acetate and cafestol, on prostate cancer cells and in animals, where they were able to inhibit growth in cells which are resistant to common anti-cancer drugs such as Cabazitaxel. The researchers initially tested six compounds, naturally found in coffee, on the proliferation of human prostate cancers cells in a petri-dish. They found that cells treated with kahweol acetate and cafestol grew more slowly than controls. They then tested these compounds on prostate cancer cells which had been transplanted to 16 mice.
Four mice were controls, four were treated with kahweol acetate, four with cafestol, with the remaining mice being treated with a combination of kahweol acetate and cafestol. “We found that kahweol acetate and cafestol inhibited the growth of the cancer cells in mice, but the combination seemed to work synergistically, leading to a significantly slower tumour growth than in untreated mice,” said Hiroaki Iwamoto from Kanazawa University.
“After 11 days, the untreated tumours had grown by around three and a half times the original volume, whereas the tumours in the mice treated with both compounds had grown by around just over one and a half times the original size,” said Iwamoto. This is a pilot study, so this work shows that the use of these compounds is scientifically feasible, but needs further investigation, researchers said. It does not mean that the findings can yet be applied to humans.
“What it does show is that these compounds appear to have an effect on drug resistant cells prostate cancer cells in the right circumstances, and that they too need further investigation,” said Iwamoto. “We are currently considering how we might test these findings in a larger sample, and then in humans,” he said.
Kahweol acetate and cafestol are hydrocarbons, naturally found in Arabica coffee. The coffee-making process has been found to affect whether these compounds remain in coffee after brewing (as with espresso), or whether they are stripped out (as when filtered). “These are promising findings, but they should not make people change their coffee consumption. However, if we can confirm these results, we may have candidates to treat drug-resistant prostate cancer,” said Atsushi Mizokami, professor at Kanazawa University.
Strength training may reduce fatty liver disease
Besides being beneficial for heart, strength training can also reduce accumulation of fat in liver and improve blood glucose regulation, says a study on mice. The study, led by a team from the University of Campinas in Brazil, showed strength training can reduce fat stored in liver and improve blood glucose control in obese mice, even without overall loss of body weight.
The findings suggest strength training may be a fast and effective strategy for reducing the risk of fatty liver disease and diabetes in obese people.
“That these improvements in metabolism occurred over a short time even though the overall amount of body fat was unchanged, it suggests strength training can have positive effects on health and directly affect liver’s function and metabolism,” said Pereira de Moura from the varsity.
“It may be a more effective, non-drug and low-cost strategy for improving health,” she said. During the research, published in the Journal of Endocrinology, the team investigated effects of strength-based exercise on liver fat accumulation, blood glucose regulation and markers of inflammation in obese mice.
Obese mice performed strength training over a short time, the equivalent of which in humans would not be enough to change their body fat composition.
After this short-term training, the mice had less fatty livers, reduced levels of inflammatory markers and their blood glucose regulation improved, despite no change in their overall body weight.
These health benefits would be even more effective if accompanied by reduction of body fat, she added. Based on these findings, obese individuals could be directed to increase their activities through strength training, but should always first consult their primary care physician.
More investigation is required in both animals and people to understand how liver metabolism is affected by strength training. Obesity, a growing health epidemic globally, leads to inflammation in liver and impairs its ability to regulate blood glucose. It increases the risk of Type-2 diabetes and its associated complications, including nerve and kidney damage.
Do Eggs Increase Your Cholesterol Levels? Here’s What You Should Know
Do you savour cheese omelettes? If so, think again as consuming more eggs and dietary cholesterol may up the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and death from any cause, researchers have warned.
The study suggests that egg yolks are one of the richest sources of dietary cholesterol among all commonly consumed foods. One large egg has 186 milligrams of dietary cholesterol in the yolk.
“The take-home message is really about cholesterol, which happens to be high in eggs and specifically yolks,” said co-author Norrina Allen, Associate Professor at the Northwestern University.
“As part of a healthy diet, people need to consume lower amounts of cholesterol. People who consume less cholesterol have a lower risk of heart disease,” Allen added.
For the study, which will be published in the journal JAMA, the team involved 29,615 adults from six prospective cohort studies for up to 31 years of follow up.
They found eating 300 mg of dietary cholesterol per day was associated with 17 per cent higher risk of incident cardiovascular disease and 18 per cent higher risk of all-cause deaths.
The cholesterol was the driving factor independent of saturated fat consumption and other dietary fat, the team said.
Eating three to four eggs per week was associated with 6 per cent higher risk of CVD and 8 per cent higher risk of any cause of death, they added.
The researchers say that eating less than 300 milligrams of dietary cholesterol per day was the guideline recommendation before 2015. However, the most recent dietary guidelines omitted a daily limit for dietary cholesterol.
The guidelines also include weekly egg consumption as part of a healthy diet. An adult in the US gets an average of 300 milligrams per day of cholesterol and eats about three or four eggs per week.
Other animal products such as red meat, processed meat and high-fat dairy products (butter or whipped cream) also have high cholesterol content, said lead author Wenze Zhong from the varsity.
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