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PRE-ECLAMPSIA: DURING PREGNANCY THERE IS AN INCREASE IN BLOOD PRESSURE AND THE RISK OF PREMATURE BIRTH IS INCREASED WHEN THIS GOES ABOVE CERTAIN LEVELS

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PRE-ECLAMPSIA: DURING PREGNANCY THERE IS AN INCREASE IN BLOOD PRESSURE AND THE RISK OF PREMATURE BIRTH IS INCREASED WHEN THIS GOES ABOVE CERTAIN LEVELS

Post by pmmutiti on Tue Jun 24, 2008 5:41 pm

During pregnancy, blood lipids, triglycerides and cholesterol may rise several folds. There may also be an increase in blood pressure. The risk of developing pre-eclampsia and subsequent premature birth is increased if these, otherwise normal changes are increased above certain levels. Severe forms of pregnancy-induced hypertension have been reported to be beneficially modulated by omega-3 fatty acids (Secher et al, 1991). In light of their very strong hypotriglyceridemic and hypotensive effects, omega-3 fatty acids along with other nutritional factors, may be significant for the prevention of pre-eclampsia. The maternal blood pressure responses depend on the ARA/EPA ratio in the vessel wall. Multicenter studies are currently in progress and the first results are expected to be available before 1997. In the meantime, it would generally seem prudent to recommend an increased intake of omega-3 fatty acids during pregnancy. EPA will benefit the mother's heart and circulation, and DHA will definitely be good for the development of fetal brain and nervous system.

Recent studies have demonstrated that DHA supplementation during pregnancy and lactation is necessary, to prevent deficiency of the mother's DHA status during these periods, to meet the high fetal requirement for DHA. It has been shown that premature babies have lower levels of DHA in their tissues as compared to full-term babies. Thus, supplementation of infant formula with DHA/marine oils may be necessary in order to provide them with as much DHA as that available to their breast-fed counterparts. Feeding of infants with formula devoid of omega-3 fatty acids resulted in lack of deposition of DHA in their visual and neural tissues with adverse effects on vision and nervous systems. According to Dr. Connor, "The signs of omega-3 deficiency in infancy are subtle, for example, omega-3 fatty acid deficiency in infants can translate into:


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Peter Mwaura Mutiti : Teaching old blood cells new tricks:
When you hear someone mention circulation you probably think of the heart and major arteries—and for good reason. Circulatory disorders such as hypertension (high blood pressure) and atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) are major risk factors for heart disease, heart attacks, and stroke.

But there’s more to it than that. With all the attention on the heart and arteries, it’s easy to overlook serious health problems affecting the smallest components of the circulatory system—microscopic blood vessels called microcapillaries, where the critical exchange of oxygen and nutrients actually takes place. If blood isn’t flowing through this web properly, it can trigger all sorts of health problems, many of which may not seem related to circulation at all.

A number of factors contribute to poor circulation as we age. Arteries and veins become stiff and congested as cholesterol and calcium plaques accumulate and restrict blood flow. Spasms in the smooth muscles surrounding the circulatory arteries and veins can also choke off circulation. These same processes also occur in our microcapillaries, reducing microcirculation and impairing the critical exchange of nutrients and gases in tissues and major organs.

This problem only gets worse as we get older because of changes in the composition and structure of blood cells. As you reach middle age, the blood starts to thicken and congeal as platelets and blood proteins make cells sticky. Plus, the spleen—the organ that removes old, damaged blood cells from circulation—begins to slow down with age, which means new, healthy blood cells are replaced at a sharply reduced rate. And to make matters even worse, as blood cells age, they become stiff and no longer appear round and evenly shaped. This makes it harder for them to pass smoothly through the capillaries. In fact, the angular, jagged shape of the old cells can damage the fragile microcapillaries even further.

Eventually, these age-related changes take their toll on the microcapillaries, reducing circulation to the tissues and blocking the flow of nutrients and oxygen. Removal of carbon dioxide and other metabolic waste products is also hindered. This leads to a slow buildup of metabolic garbage that can gradually bury the cells in their own waste products. In time, the cells, poisoned by their own metabolic byproducts, begin to waste away and ultimately cease to function altogether.

The combined effect of poor circulation and old blood contributes to a host of symptoms, including deep fatigue, fuzzy thinking, frequent infections, and lowered sex drive—all conditions usually considered just “normal parts of aging.”

If circulation doesn’t improve, it can lead to more serious conditions, such as high blood pressure, heart attack, stroke, diabetes, and arthritis. But giving your body a fresh supply of healthy blood may target all of these problems and more.
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