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Did you brush twice today?



Did you brush twice today?

Dentists have been known to tell their patients to brush twice a day for at least 2 minutes, and for good reason. Good brushing habits keep your teeth healthy, maintain the health of your gums, and keep your teeth strong and cavity-free.

Seldom, a question does arise, as to when teeth should be brushed. In a review done by Attin T and Hornecker E, it was found that most studies indicated brushing before breakfast and after dinner, as best suited times for brushing. Although, there have been claims stating brushing after food intake helps remove food debris on teeth, studies have proven otherwise.

A simple elaboration should be self-explanatory. For anything to be digested and utilized optimally by the human body, acid acts on it to aid the digestion process. This process begins in the mouth. The bad smell and salty taste in your mouth, early in the morning, is due to the acids released by bacteria trying to dissolve your teeth. Studies by Jaeggi and Lussi have confirmed, intake of food also causes acid release in the mouth which, not only aids in digestion but also softens the enamel on the teeth. The loosened enamel is easier to remove/lose when in contact with a toothbrush. Another study supporting Jaeggi and Lussi’s study confirmed, it takes at least 40 minutes after food intake, for the enamel to harden.

Along with when to brush your teeth, it is important to know how. As depicted in the image above

  1. Take a “pea-sized” amount of tooth paste on the toothbrush.
  2. Make sure all surfaces of your teeth have been touched by the brush in an “Up and Down, Round and Round” motion.
  3. Remember to brush not only the front teeth but also the back teeth beside your cheek and the insides of your teeth too, as shown.
  4. Remember not to apply too much pressure.
  5. Spit out leftover toothpaste and rinse thoroughly with water.
  6. Remember to clean your tongue too.

For further information and consultation:

Dr. Sharat Megh

MDS (Pediatric Dentistry)

Consultant at

  1. Bhagirathi Neotia Woman and Child Care Centre, Rawdon Street Branch, Kolkata
  2. My Family Clinic, Kalikapur, Kolkata

For any queries , kindly email to


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Pizza, Chips And Other Processed Foods May Affect Your Memory




Pizza, Chips And Other Processed Foods May Affect Your Memory

The very idea of chips, pizzas, pastries etc make us slurp. But the health issues associated to these processed foods often make us take a back step. By now, we all know high intake of ultra-processed foods lead to several lifestyle-related problems including weight gain, diabetes, blood pressure and more. But did you know, it may affect your memory too? Yes, you heard us. A new study has found that diet enriched with highly processed food can be linked to signs of memory loss. The study was conducted on ageing rats and the findings were published in the journal Brain, Behavior, and Immunity.

Researchers found “four weeks on a diet of highly processed food leads to a strong inflammatory response in the brains of ageing rats that was accompanied by behavioural signs of memory loss,” reads an ANI report. That’s not all. It was also found that replacing processed foods with omega-3 fatty acid DHA reduced the inflammatory effects in older rats. However, no such cognitive issues were found in young rats that were given processed food-enriched diet.

“The fact we’re seeing these effects so quickly is a little bit alarming,” said senior study author Ruth Barrientos, an investigator in The Ohio State University Institute for Behavioral Medicine Research and associate professor of psychiatry and behavioural health. He further stated that the findings also indicated that processed diet can lead to abrupt memory deficit and rapid memory decline in older people, further leading to disease like Alzheimer’s.

“By being aware of this, maybe we can limit processed foods in our diets and increase consumption of foods that are rich in the omega-3 fatty acid DHA to either prevent or slow that progression,” Ruth Barrientos added.

Here’re 5 Other Side-Effects Of Highly Processed Diet:

  1. It leads to weight gain and obesity.
  2. High intake of junk food might elevate blood pressure levels.
  3. Processed foods often promote diabetes.
  4. It might increase the level of bad cholesterol in your body.
  5. Several studies have also found its negative effects on our mood – it may often lead to depression.

This is why experts suggest that a healthy and balanced diet is a must to keep up a good health. But always remember consult an expert before adapting to any kind of lifestyle-related changes.

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Learn these combinations of health supplements for better health




Learn these combinations of health supplements for better health


This statement most likely originated from unverifiable online sources claiming that taking fish oil and vitamin E together can result in excessive bleeding. There are ongoing studies and some published ones to assess the effects of combining fish oil and vitamin E to relieve menstrual pain and to improve blood sugar levels in patients with coronary artery disease.

In fact, certain supplements contain a combination of both. But if you are thinking of starting on a regime of fish oil or vitamin E supplements, check with your doctor first – especially if you are on medication or have medical conditions.


There’s truth to the fact that you shouldn’t. Studies have shown that the absorption of iron can be reduced if an iron supplement is combined with a calcium supplement and/or calcium-containing product such as milk. If you have to take both iron and calcium tablets, space them at least two hours apart.


It’s about the type of vitamins you’re taking. “Fat-soluble vitamins such as A, D, E and K are better absorbed when taken with food. This is because fatty foods trigger the release of bile, a digestive fluid, which is essential for the absorption of these vitamins.”

Also, make sure you eat something first before you pop fish oil or iron supplements, especially when they are consumed in higher quantities as they can upset an empty stomach.

However, water-soluble vitamins, such as vitamins B and C, are better absorbed when taken on an empty stomach.


If you’re put on antibiotics such as tetracyclines and quinolones by your doctor, you’ll want to take your zinc tablets separately. “Zinc can bind to these types of antibiotics, which prevents the body from absorbing both zinc and the antibiotic.


This is a combo that works well together. “Vitamin C and iron bind together to form a complex which makes it easier for the body to absorb iron.”

Just how much better is the absorption? When iron is consumed with 25mg to 100mg of vitamin C, the body’s absorption of iron increases by four times compared to just taking iron on its own.


This could be owing to the fact that fat-soluble vitamins are stored in the liver or fat tissue for later use.

In comparison, water-soluble vitamins dissolve in water and are absorbed, but the excess is passed out from the body.

But that doesn’t mean you load up on the water-soluble nutrients. Each vitamin has its own purpose and there is a recommended daily allowance for each vitamin. In fact, if you are consuming sufficient nutrients through your diet, you may not even need a supplement.


If you have the habit of chasing down your supplements, especially calcium or iron tablets, with your morning coffee, reconsider. Tea and coffee contain caffeine which may reduce the absorption of certain minerals. Caffeine is also a diuretic that increases urination. This may cause water-soluble vitamins such as vitamins B and C to be passed out of the body more quickly.


Yes, you can, But skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next dose. This will prevent you from double dosing.

Still, missing your supplements is not that big of a deal unless they are prescribed for treating a certain deficiency. “Supplements are meant to fill the gaps in your diet and it takes times for them to build up in the blood and take effect. Thus, patients are unlikely to experience any immediate effects when they miss a single dose.”

This is unlike medicines for treating certain conditions, where missing a dose can result in patients experiencing immediate symptoms, such as an increased blood sugar level due to missing a dose of anti-diabetic medication.

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Navratri fasting: Healthy food options you can try




Navratri fasting: Healthy food options you can try

The festival of Navratri is finally here. During the nine days, many people observe a fast. If you too are fasting and are looking for healthy options that will make you feel satiated and energetic throughout the day, here are some unbeatable foods that can help.

Kuttu atta

Kuttu atta or buckwheat flour is packed with high fibre that helps detox the body. Also, fibre helps to keep hunger pangs at bay thereby, making us crave less while fasting. You can also use singhare ka atta (water chestnut flour) and rajgira ka atta (amaranth flour). Instead of rice, you can have samai ke chawal or samvat ke chwaal (barnyard millet) that can be used to make khichdi, dhoklas or kheer.

Sabudana or sago

It has a cooling effect on the body and is easy to digest.


Foxnut is a very popular fasting food. It is loaded with antioxidants, and acts as an anti-ageing food by preventing white hair, wrinkles, and premature ageing.

Dry fruits

Almonds, pistachio, cashew nuts, and kishmish (raisins) are eaten during fasts.

Fruits and vegetables

Vegetables like bottle gourd, potato, pumpkin, bananas, arbi, potato colocasia, yam, sweet potato, lemon, honey, cucumber, raw plantain, tomato, carrot, raw papaya, and spinach are commonly consumed during Navratri.

Dairy products

Dairy products are considered to be holy during an auspicious occasion. Hence, you can consume natural products such as milk, curd, paneer, butter, ghee, khoya, and condensed milk.

As far as spices are concerned, you can use black pepper powder, green cardamom, cloves, cinnamon, ajwain or carom seeds, black peppercorns, dry pomegranate seeds, kokum, tamarind, and nutmeg. “Some people also use fresh coriander leaves, red chilly powder, dry mango powder, chaat masala (especially with fruits). A lot depends on the devotee’s beliefs and home traditions,” said Khosla.


Non-vegetarian food, eggs, alcohol, smoking and aerated drinks.

Grains: Wheat, rice, oats, bread, semolina, gram flour, cornflour, millet flour like ragi, and pear are strongly prohibited during the course of these nine days.

All fast-related food needs to be prepared without onion, garlic since they produce heat and are tamasic in nature,

Salt: Sendha namak is used during this time and it has low sodium content as well.

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