People who live a sedentary lifestyle, do not eat healthily and constantly consume alcohol are likely to develop fatty liver or cause other damages to the liver. One of the most common blood tests is a liver blood test, which assesses liver functions or liver injury. A basic liver blood test determines the level of certain enzymes (proteins) in the blood, which regulate the functioning of important chemical reactions in the body. Among the most sensitive and widely used liver enzymes are the aminotransferases. They include aspartate aminotransferase (AST or SGOT) and alanine aminotransferase (ALT or SGPT).
An increase in the SGOT and SGPT levels are indicative of a certain liver damage and getting a proper diagnosis is recommended in that case.
“The normal levels of 30 for males and 19 for females, irrespective of the laboratory through which the tests are done,” says Dr Rakhi Maiwall.
Also read our expert advice: What are SGOT and SGPT?
“Some labs state that the normal range is 45, and people assume that their SGOT and SGPT levels are normal. However, a study was recently conducted among Asian patients which stated that 19 and 30 are normal upper limits of SGOT and SGPT in female and males respectively” she adds.
She goes on to explain what SGOT and SGPT levels in a blood test can refer to. “An increase in SGOT and SGPT tests means that your liver cells are getting damaged. The damage can be because of many reasons. Sometimes, these damages can happen for a temporary period of time. For instance, there are chances that after three months, your SGOT and SGPT levels are back to normal. But there are also chances that your SGOT and SGPT are on a continuous rise since six months. This signifies that there is a chronic disease in your liver and you need to get a proper diagnosis done to find out the reason for it,” says Dr. Rakhi.
Consistently rising levels of SGOT and SGPT is the second stage of liver damage, says Dr Rakhi. “The damage enters the third stage when levels continue to rise for at least a year, then it is called fibrosis. Proper diagnosis of this is done using a fibroscan. The fourth stage is when the damage is consistent, and the fibrosis converts to cirrhosis. In that, it is quite like that SGOT and SGPT do not rise, and other cells in the liver begin to damage. At this stage, the liver is permanently damaged,” she says.
Dr. Rakhi further stresses on the importance of the level of increase of SGOT and SGPT, i.e. if they are twice or thrice the normal levels. That confirms the severity of the damage done to the liver.
(Dr Rakhi Maiwall is Senior Consultant at Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences)
Deficiency Of B Vitamins: Top Symptoms To Watch Out For
Vitamin B is an important vitamin for the health of your cells and keeping you energised. There are different kinds of Vitamin B and all of them perform different functions. What’s more is that different types of Vitamin Bs come from different types of foods. Vitamin B 12 is primarily found in meat and dairy products. Fruits and vegetables essentially provide Vitamin B7 and Vitamin B9. And just like deficiency of other vitamins, Vitamin B deficiency too can lead to various health problems. Pregnant women, older adults or people with Crohn’s disease or Celiac disease are at risk of being deficient in Vitamin B.
In this article, we talk about common symptoms of being deficient in B Vitamins and how can you make up for it. Keep reading…
1. Vitamin B1 and B2
People who misuse alcohol may experience confusion and cracks on the sides of mouth in case they are deficient in Vitamin B1 and B2. These vitamins are also known as thiamine and riboflavin respectively. Vitamin B1 and B2 can help in converting food into energy and maintain eye health. Dark green veggies, eggs, milk and whole grains are rich sources of Vitamin B1 and B2.
2. Vitamin B12
Deficiency of Vitamin B12 can increase risks of anaemia. In the long term, Vitamin B12 deficiency can lead to depression, dementia and paranoia. Symptoms include feeling extreme fatigue, weakness, irritability and tingling in feet and hands. You can increase your Vitamin B12 intake by including more eggs in your diet. Other food sources include fish, cheese and milk.
3. Vitamin B9
Vitamin B9 is also known as folate and its deficiency can cause anaemia or diarrhoea. Folate is extremely important for pregnant women. Its deficiency can lead to babies born with birth defects, reports healthline. Citrus fruits, beetroot, fish, whole grains, leafy green veggies and legumes are all rich in Vitamin B9.
4. Vitamin B3
Including Vitamin B3 in your diet can help convert food into energy and also aid digestion and a healthy appetite. Lacking Vitamin B3 or niacin, can cause digestion issues like cramps in the abdomen and nausea. Chicken, peanuts, whole grains like wheat and barley and fish can help you have sufficient Vitamin B3.
5. Vitamin B6
Deficiency of Vitamin B6 can increase risks of skin disorders like rash or cracks around the mouth. It can also result in anemia, confusion, depression and nausea. Food sources of Vitamin B6 include tuna, salmon, chickpeas, whole grains, chicken breast, potatoes, spinach and watermelon.
The Many Benefits Of Chewing Food Properly: A Very Underrated Lifestyle Habit But The Effect It Can Have Is Eye-Opening
The key to healthy living is a combination of numerous dos and don’ts. What you eat, the time when you eat and even how you eat are important aspects of living healthy. You might never have paid attention to chewing your food, but believe it or not, it can actually reduce your calorie intake! Lifestyle coach Luke Coutinho says that chewing food properly can have a huge impact on digestion, gut health, immunity, weight and nutritional deficiencies. “Chewing is one of the most underrated habits, however, it has a massive impact on our health,” he says.
He goes on to explain how most of us think that are digestion begins in the gut. However, the truth is that the very first step of digestion takes place in the mouth itself. “When we chew, we allow our saliva to mix with food. This is crucial because our saliva is rich in digestive enzymes, particularly the ones responsible for digesting fats and carbohydrates. Chewing also breaks down food into smaller chunks thereby taking off the load from your stomach. It creates a feeling of satiety because by chewing, you are also doing mindful eating,” explains Luke.
What’s more is that when you chew every bite of your food properly, you are likely to get more satisfaction from your meals. Chewing food properly is one of the first essential steps for proper digestion of food. Chewing food can help you swallow food easily. When you chew food multiple times in your mouth, it leaves food small enough for the gastric juices in stomach to further break it down to microscopic size.
More benefits of chewing food properly
1. When you focus on chewing food, you are going to concentrate on what you’re eating. It will help you enjoy the aroma of food and eat food slowly. Eating food is going to be a much more pleasurable experience in this case.
2. Chewing food will make the food be in contact with your taste buds for longer. This can help boost feeling of fullness and satisfaction, reports WebMd.
3. The process of chewing food properly is a part of mindful eating. It is a practice which can reduce the amount food you eat in any meal. Mindful eating involves eating food without any distraction like television, book or newspaper. All these practices can make you overeat unconsciously.
If you are a fast-paced eater, this is one of the first lifestyle change you should adopt, recommends Luke. No matter how busy you are, it is one of the most basic habits for good health, especially gut health – which, according to him, is everything when it comes to prevention and healing.
(Luke Coutinho, Holistic Lifestyle Coach – Integrative Medicine)
Pact to find solutions to asthma, other diseases inked
A PACT was inked on Thursday between city-based Chest Research Foundation (CRF) with India subsidiary of global innovation company, 3M India, to collaborate on a research study that will generate data for providing solutions to reduce increasing cases of asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases (COPD) and occupational lung diseases.
Based on academic research and industrial expertise, the study will focus on raising awareness among more than 3,500 pulmonologists in India about management, prevention and long-term impact of chronic and occupational lung diseases.
Globally, respiratory diseases are the third leading cause of death worldwide, and India bears 32 per cent of the global burden of respiratory diseases. An alarming number of cases are reported every year about chronic respiratory diseases and high pollution levels across cities in India. Studies have indicated that the number of COPD and asthma cases were 1.7 and 2.4 times higher in India than the global average in 2016.
“Owing to a lack of data, infrastructure and skills at the primary and secondary healthcare levels, a majority of the asthma and COPD cases remain undiagnosed, and hence it is of utmost importance to educate the medical fraternity and citizens to enhance early and accurate diagnosis, and proper treatment,” said Dr Sundeep Salvi, director, Chest Research Foundation.
Salvi added, “The number of patients suffering from COPD and asthma in India is alarming. Along with the deteriorating air quality in our cities, this number is increasing yearly.”
Debarati Sen, managing director, 3M India Region (India and Sri Lanka), said their interest in the subject stemmed from 30 years of experience in working with industrial labour in India. Sen added that they recognised a compelling need to raise awareness on using the right apparatus. “Globally, 3M has conducted studies and research in the areas of air pollution, ill effects of exposure and on ways to protect against exposure to pollutants, making this collaboration symbiotic,” Sen added.