Common painkillers linked to heart, stoke and gastrointestinal risks!

Do you think twice before popping in a painkiller analgesic  in your mouth. If no, read this!

A recent meta-analysis was done to study the effects of analgesics like ibuprofen, diclofenac and coxibs on heart risks, stroke risk, and gastric bleeding risks.

The meta-analysis included  280 randomized trials of analgesics (non-steroidal, NSAID)  versus placebo  with 124 513 participants, 68 342 person-years. It also included 474 trials of one NSAID versus another NSAID 229 296 participants, 165 456 person-years. It was published recently in the Lancet.

The main outcomes were major vascular events like heart attacks, stroke, or vascular death and  gastrointestinal complications like perforation, obstruction, or bleed.


Major vascular events like heart attacks and strokes were increased by about a third by all the analgesics like coxib, diclofenac.  Ibuprofen also significantly increased major coronary events. Compared with placebo, of 1000 patients allocated to a coxib or diclofenac for a year, three more had major vascular events, one of which was fatal.

Naproxen did not significantly increase major vascular events.

Heart failure risk was roughly doubled by all NSAIDs.

All NSAID regimens increased upper gastrointestinal complications like bleeding and perforation.

The vascular risks of high-dose diclofenac, and possibly ibuprofen, are comparable to coxibs, whereas high-dose naproxen is associated with less vascular risk than other NSAIDs.


Although NSAIDs increase vascular and gastrointestinal risks, the size of these risks can be predicted, which could help guide clinical decision making


In view of the above findings it would be advisable not to pop in a pain killer for mild aches and pains. Patients who need pain killers for chronic pain should take them strictly under medical supervision. 


via Vascular and upper gastrointestinal effects of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs: meta-analyses of individual participant data from randomised trials : The Lancet.

Don’t Gain Weight on Vacation This Year – some tips!

When you’re on vacation, it’s all too easy to abandon everything you know about eating healthfully — and then return home unable to button your pants!

Here are some tips to avoid putting on those extra pounds!

So before you order that extra pina colada at the swim-up bar, consider these simple strategies to avoid vacation weight gain:

Vacation Tip No. 1: Plan Ahead to Fit in Fitness/ go walking!

Opt for locations that will allow you to engage in physical activities you enjoy. Keep in mind that physical activity is the ticket to enjoying extra calories without weight gain.

If running is not your style, consider places where you can take walks or hikes, ride bikes, do water sports, or use the hotel tennis courts or gym.

Without work schedules making demands on your time, you should be able to fit in fun fitness activities every day.  Walk the golf course, play basketball, swim, walk, kayak, bicycle, play tennis — you name it, just do it for at least an hour each day.

Vacation Tip No. 2: Be Prepared

When you travel, whether by plane, train, or automobile, be prepared with healthy food so you won’t have to eat whatever is available.

Start the day with a nutritious breakfast, then pack easy and satisfying snacks or a small meal, such as a turkey sandwich with lettuce and tomato on whole-grain bread, a piece of fruit, and some cut-up veggies with hummus.

Vacation Tip No. 3: Avoid Dining-Out Disasters

Eating out may pose the biggest challenge for avoiding vacation weight gain.

The key is to order simply prepared foods, such as baked, broiled. or grilled meats and fish.

Stay away from fried, crispy, or creamy foods; hold extras such as cheese and mayo; top salads with low-fat dressings; drink water instead of sodas — simple things that can shave calories and make room for the special treats.

You can snack on healthy, shelf-stable foods like:

  • Nuts
  • Seeds
  • Trail mix
  • Cereal
  • Dried fruit
  • Low-fat crackers.
  • Single-serve containers of fruit
  • Peanut butter
  • Popcorn
  • Granola or cereal bars
  • Rice or popcorn cakes
  • Graham crackers

Vacation Tip No. 4: Indulge in Moderation/ Pare Down Portions

Have one scoop of ice cream instead of the sundae, or split that decadent dessert with a dining companion.

When you drink alcohol, the calories add up fast, especially if you are downing those fancy drinks that come with an umbrella. So make a plan for when you’ll drink alcoholic beverages and how much you will consume.

Alternate alcoholic drinks with nonalcoholic, noncalorie beverages, so you’ll stay well-hydrated and reduce your total calorie intake. And when ordering alcoholic drinks, opt for lower-calorie choices such as light beer, wine spritzers, wine, champagne, or spirits mixed with water or diet mixes.

“Enjoy small portions of whatever you like, [and] eat slowly so you taste the food and feel a sense of satisfaction, enjoyment, and relaxation of the vacation,”

Don’t keep lingering around the table as that can lead to overeating.


Sounds Easy? Doesn’t it?

via Don’t Gain Weight on Vacation This Year – 5 Tips.

Effect of vacation on our physical and mental health

I am just back from a 3 week vacation to north of the country and was wondering as to  what effects vacation tends to have on our physical and mental health.

There is no doubt that vacation is necessary for each one of us: to recuperate from our over-worked daily schedule, to relax our body and souls. However there is a bad side to it which is an increase in weight gain post vacation.

A meta-analysis was done to investigate to what extent vacation has positive effects on health and well-being, how long such effects endure after work resumption, and how specific vacation activities and experiences affect these relationships.


The results suggested that vacation has positive effects on health and well-being (small effect, d=+0.43), but that these effects soon fade out after work resumption (small effect, d=-0.38). The research also demonstrated that vacation activities and experiences fade out after a few months.


The is no doubt that vacations cause physical and mental relaxation. They de-stress you and free you from your daily grind. However the vacations need to be planned in such a way that one gets enough time to relax and rewind. Vacations were found to give one a feeling of peace, calm and good experience.

However there was an increase in weight after vacationing as there is hardly any fixed diet. Travellers  tend to overeat. This weight tends to remain with you even after you return. So its important to eat healthy and limit you portions during meals.

So next time you plan to travel, eat healthy!

eta-analysis of… [J Occup Health. 2009] – PubMed – NCBI.