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8 Health Benefits Of Black Tea You Simply Cannot Miss

The Kashmir Monitor





Even though tea was discovered in China about 4000 years ago, it is now the most popularly consumed beverages worldwide. As a matter of fact, tea is less harmful than coffee because of less caffeine content in the former, but it is of extreme importance to understand the benefits of tea. Black tea has enormous health benefits. The difference between green, white and black teas is the way they are processed and made. Green tea and white tea are not fermented whereas black tea is fermented and oxidized. Presence of fluoride in black tea ensures good oral and bone health. Black tea helps in balancing the hormonal levels, has anti-inflammatory qualities, is rich in antioxidants like polyphenols and has minimum contents of sodium, proteins, and carbohydrates. Apart from these, it hydrates the body and also moisturizes and improves skin.
Black tea is consumed in different ways in different parts of the world. In western countries, it is consumed cold with lemon as iced tea or with a sweetener like sugar or honey. On the other hand, in eastern countries, it is consumed black and hot. In southern Asian counties, like Sri Lanka and India, it most commonly consumed daily drink and is a must with breakfast.
How far is black tea beneficial for health? Here are 9 reasons:
1. Reduces risk of diabetes
A serious metabolic disorder, diabetes is an eternal emerging chronic health problem across the globe. Consuming two to three cups of black tea can help in decreasing type 2 diabetes risk by 42 %. The major bioactive compounds in black tea are polyphenols which lower glycerin index.
2. Prevents heart diseases
To avoid health complications, the heart must remain healthy. Flavones present in black tea help in improving the heart. It helps in repairing coronary artery dysfunctions in heart patients, the functioning of blood vessels, which may lead to strokes, atherosclerosis, and other cardiovascular conditions. So, to keep heart healthy and young, have 2-3 cups of tea per day.
3. Improves digestion
Rich in tannins and other chemicals, black tea has a positive and relaxing effect on the digestive system of the body. Researchers believe that polyphenols present in black tea act as a prebiotic, which enhances the good gut bacteria. These polyphenols further prevent the growth of other harmful bacteria in the gut. The chemical compound fights stomach ulcers.
4. Relieves asthma
Hot and brewed liquids bring relief to asthmatic conditions as they reduce inflammation and swelling of bronchial tubes and enlarge air passages. It makes inhalation and exhalation easier. The presence of flavonoids is also beneficial for people with asthma.
5. Relieves stress
Stress has become a part of daily life. And nothing can be better than a cup of black tea to de-stress. Black tea helps in lowering the production of stress hormone and stabilizing it by relaxing the nerves.
6. Aids weight loss
The root cause of all the diseases like heart disease, diabetes, high cholesterol is obesity. Drinking black tea can prevent inflammation-induced obesity and lowers triglyceride levels and visceral fats. So, a balanced and healthy diet, little bit of exercise and a hot cup of black tea can help you get that ‘perfect’ shape.
7. Reduces cholesterol
Black tea can help in the reduction of bad cholesterol levels which mainly occur because of unhealthy food and lifestyle. The bad cholesterol can limit the blood flow, thus leading to heart attack and stroke. According to the Japanese researchers, Chinese black tea has anti-hypercholesterolemic which affects humans who are obese and prone to heart disease.
8. Kills bacteria
Bacteria are good and bad but mostly, bad. Most bacteria cause infections and can also cause many incurable health problems. Scientists have confirmed that antioxidants and other phytonutrients found in black tea possess antibacterial properties. It can be an extremely effective treatment for the smelly and sweaty foot.

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Hepatitis A Causes and Symptoms

The Kashmir Monitor



Generally speaking, hepatitis A is more common in parts of the planet that are developing. It’s for the fact that sanitation and food handling practices are by and large poor. However, medical experts say that living in developed countries can also put you at risk of having hepatitis A, but it’s really a rare occurrence.

Just like what’s mentioned earlier, hepatitis A is caused by the hepatitis A virus or HAV. It can be spread around by someone who has hepatitis A because he or she is a carrier of the virus behind it. It is said that a person with hepatitis A is most infectious about 2 weeks before he or she begins to experience signs and symptoms.

Here are some of the ways that hepatitis A is spread around:


Consumption of food that is prepared by a person who has hepatitis A. This is most especially true if he or she has not properly washed his or her hands.

Drinking of water that is contaminated with the hepatitis A virus.

Intake of raw or undercooked seafood obtained from contaminated water.

Close contact with someone who has hepatitis A. This includes having sexual intercourse with an infected person, especially when the rectal or anal area has been touched with the fingers, mouth or tongue.

Using illegal drugs, especially when paraphernalia contaminated with the hepatitis A virus are used.


Medical experts say that it may take a while before the various signs and symptoms associated with hepatitis A show up. They say that someone may experience them about 4 weeks after getting infected. It’s even possible for someone with hepatitis A to not experience any sign and symptom at all.

Some of the initial signs and symptoms of hepatitis A include:

Tiredness and malaise
Achy muscles and joints
Pain in the upper right section of the abdomen
Loss of appetite
Mild fever
Sore throat
Diarrhea or constipation
Hives or raised rash that’s itchy

These initial signs and symptoms associated with hepatitis A can last anywhere from a few days only to a couple of weeks. Afterwards, as the infection of the liver progresses, the following may be experienced by the individual:

Jaundice, which is the yellowing of the skin as well as the whites of the eyes (sclera)

Pale colored stools
Dark colored urine
Skin itching

Tenderness and swelling of the upper right section of the abdomen

Although it rarely happens, hepatitis A can cause liver failure. When such develops, the person who is infected may experience severe vomiting, frequent bruising, bleeding of the nose and gums, drowsiness and confusion.

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Busting myths around blood donation

The Kashmir Monitor



As per the World Health Organisation (WHO) norms, ideally, one per cent of the total population should regularly donate blood to meet the requirements, which is anywhere between 1% and 3% of country’s population that would require blood in a year.

Contrary to the myth about blood donations making a person weak or anaemic, the body replenishes the lost blood in a matter of a few days, say experts.

“A healthy bone marrow makes a constant supply of red cells, plasma and platelets, so there is no question of becoming weak, much less anaemic. It is a myth and should not deter people from donating blood,” says Dr RK Singal, chairman, internal medicine department, BLK super-speciality Hospital.


The donors can give either whole blood or specific blood components, as there is sophisticated equipment available these days that extract relevant components from blood and the rest of the blood can be transfused back to the donor.

As per the World Health Organisation (WHO) norms, ideally, one per cent of the total population should regularly donate blood to meet the requirements, which is anywhere between 1% and 3% of country’s population that would require blood in a year.

About 65% of India’s population is young and if this section donates blood regularly, chances of the country facing blood shortage will be remote. Hence, there is all the more reason for people, especially youngsters, to come forward and be regular blood donors.

How to prepare

Have enough fruit juice and water in the night and morning before you donate

Have a full meal 3 hours before donation; never on an empty stomach

Have some rest for about 10-15 minutes after donation

Have some snacks or a juice with high sugar content after donation

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Erectile dysfunction’s connection with lifestyle

The Kashmir Monitor



By Dr Anjani Kumar Agrawal

healthy-lifestyle-can-reverse-effects-of-hypertensionAll over the world, but perhaps more so in India, men are embarrassed to admit that they may have a problem getting or keeping an erection — a condition known as erectile dysfunction (ED).

All over the world, but perhaps more so in India, men are embarrassed to admit that they may have a problem getting or keeping an erection — a condition known as erectile dysfunction (ED). From my research, I have found a strong link between ED and stress. Other major causes include smoking, drinking, diabetes, hypertension or high blood pressure and cholesterol levels. My advice to these patients is — do not get even more stressed over this situation. Instead, focus on taking the right medication and making some changes to your lifestyle, so you can once again enjoy a satisfactory sexual life.



We normally diagnose ED and its underlying causes by asking the patient a few questions about his medical and sexual history. This is sometimes done by sharing a questionnaire with the patient. The questions that we ask are designed to help us understand the cause of ED in the particular patient.

We also do a physical exam, ask for certain blood tests to rule out other medical conditions responsible for erectile dysfunction, and recommend imaging tests (if required) to determine whether the person is physically able to have an erection or not.


Underlying medical conditions such as diabetes, hypertension and hypercholesterolaemia (high cholesterol levels) can cause ED. In these cases, ED can be reversed once the patient starts treatment.

In my experience, many men suffer from ED because of work stress, family pressure and anxiety. So, changes in lifestyle with regular exercise, yoga, abstaining from alcohol and smoking, and proper counselling help in treating ED. Along with this, medicines for ED are usually prescribed for about 3 to 6 months by which time lifestyle changes start to take effect and the patient is physically and mentally healthier, which helps resolve the problem.

An estimated 16% to 25% of men experience ED at some point in their lives. I would urge them not to be embarrassed about it. Seek medical help from a urologist or andrologist; get the necessary advice/medication; and go on to enjoy a healthy, fulfilling sexual life.

The author of this article is Dr Anjani Kumar Agrawal, head, andrology, department of urology sciences, Max Smart Super Speciality Hospital, Saket

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