Monday, June 26, 2017
facebook

google plus


‘Most homes in low-income countries don’t have access to soap’Photo source: iStock

‘Most homes in low-income countries don’t have access to soap’

26 Jun 2017 | 5:04 PM

NEW YORK: Most families in low-income countries such as Iraq and Serbia do not have access to soap, scientists, including those of Indian origin, have found.

[ + read story ]

New York, June 26

Most families in low-income countries such as Iraq and Serbia do not have access to soap, scientists, including those of Indian origin, have found.

Researchers, including those from University of Buffalo in the US, found that the percentages ranged from less than 0.1 per cent in Ethiopia to 96.4 per cent in Serbia.

The team identified the proportion of households in which soap and water was present at a hand washing place in the home.

Researchers found the availability of soap anywhere in the dwelling ranged from nearly 21 per cent in Senegal to 99.1 percent in Iraq and Serbia, according to the surveys that included data on soap availability in the home.

In Africa, the proportions of households with soap and water at a hand-washing place range from as low as 0.1 per cent in Ethiopia to a high of 34.7 per cent in Swaziland, researchers said.

They also found that compared to Africa, the availability of soap and water was higher in the Eastern Mediterranean region, and ranged from 42.6 per cent in Afghanistan to 91.5 per cent in Iraq.

In Southeast Asia, nearly 79 per cent of households in Bhutan had soap and water, compared to 21.4 per cent in Bangladesh, researchers said.

The poorest households often had extremely low access to soap and water for hand washing, compared to wealthier households (for example, six per cent and 85 per cent in regions of Nepal).

“These data are useful to public health programs and policy makers because they underscore the deep inequities that persist globally and within countries, contributing to these preventable child deaths among people living in poverty and in rural areas in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia,” said Pavani Ram from University of Buffalo.

The findings underscore the need to improve access to soap, along with hand-washing behaviour in general, in many impoverished countries, said Swapna Kumar from University of Buffalo.

The study was published in the American Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. PTI

‘City noises disrupt heartbeat, may cause cardiac disease’

‘City noises disrupt heartbeat, may cause cardiac disease’

26 Jun 2017 | 2:02 PM

LONDON: Fluctuating noises from busy city streets and town centres disturb normal heart rhythms and could trigger serious cardiac problems, scientists warn.

Kids who do not drink cow’s milk tend to be shorter

Kids who do not drink cow’s milk tend to be shorter

25 Jun 2017 | 8:50 PM

TORONTO: Parents, take note! Children who drink plant based milk beverages or milk from animals other than cows are more likely to be shorter, a study claims.

Low-cost wearable device to monitor diabetes through sweat

Low-cost wearable device to monitor diabetes through sweat

25 Jun 2017 | 3:58 PM

WASHINGTON: Scientists, including one of Indian origin, have developed a new wearable device that can help manage diabetes by monitoring the patient's sweat, an advance that may spell the end for painful needle jabs.

Sleep well to avoid eating junk food due to job stress

Sleep well to avoid eating junk food due to job stress

24 Jun 2017 | 8:42 PM

NEW YORK: Stress at your job can lead to overeating and intake of junk food at dinnertime, but there could be a buffer to this harmful pattern. New research suggests that a good night's sleep can serve as a protecting factor between job stress and unhealthy eating in the evening.

Wallpaper fungus can make you sick

Wallpaper fungus can make you sick

24 Jun 2017 | 4:27 PM

LONDON: Toxins produced by fungus growing on the wallpapers in our home can contaminate the air and be easily inhaled, leading to “sick building syndrome,” a new study has found.

Mere presence of smartphone reduces brain power

Mere presence of smartphone reduces brain power

24 Jun 2017 | 3:13 PM

WASHINGTON: Your brain power may be significantly reduced when your smartphone is within reach — even if it is switched off — affecting your ability to concentrate on a task, scientists have found.

Extra-virgin olive oil protects brain against Alzheimer’s

Extra-virgin olive oil protects brain against Alzheimer’s

24 Jun 2017 | 3:09 PM

WASHINGTON: A diet enriched with extra-virgin olive oil may protect memory and learning ability, and prevent Alzheimer’s disease, a study claims.

Breastfeeding may cut mother's heart attack risk

Breastfeeding may cut mother's heart attack risk

22 Jun 2017 | 1:49 PM

LONDON: Breastfeeding may reduce a mother's heart attack and stroke risk later in life, according to new research.

Holding your partner's hand can ease their pain

Holding your partner's hand can ease their pain

22 Jun 2017 | 12:53 PM

WASHINGTON: Dads-to-be, take note! You may be more useful in the labour room than you realise, as a study has found that holding your partner's hand synchronises your heart and respiratory rates and dissipates her pain.

Lack Vitamin D? Your job could be a reason

Lack Vitamin D? Your job could be a reason

22 Jun 2017 | 12:11 PM

WASHINGTON DC: Stuck behind your office desk for most part of the day? Your nine-to-five job could be a major factor that puts you at high risk of Vitamin D deficiency.

Changing diet may treat autism

Changing diet may treat autism

20 Jun 2017 | 9:27 PM

BEIJING: Altering the make-up of bacteria in the gut through diet, pro-and prebiotic supplements, faecal matter transplants or antibiotics might reduce the symptoms of autism, suggests new research.

Grape compounds may help fight colon cancer

Grape compounds may help fight colon cancer

20 Jun 2017 | 7:10 PM

Compounds found in grapes can kill colon cancer cells and may lead to novel treatments to prevent the deadly disease, according to scientists including those of Indian origin.

Shampoo, washing powder reduce sperm count?

Shampoo, washing powder reduce sperm count?

20 Jun 2017 | 7:12 PM

Did you know, using everyday essentials, such as shampoo and washing powder, can be toxic for humans.

85% diabetics see amputations in their lifetime

85% diabetics see amputations in their lifetime

19 Jun 2017 | 12:08 PM

At least 85 per cent of diabetics see amputations in their lifetime due to lack of appropriate treatment, data released during a national conference on diabetics here has revealed.

Here's why some babies are born too small

Here's why some babies are born too small

18 Jun 2017 | 5:50 PM

WASHINGTON DC: Why is one twin smaller than the other? According to a recent study, the answer could lie in the placenta.

Chemicals found in detergents, shampoos linked to birth defects

Chemicals found in detergents, shampoos linked to birth defects

17 Jun 2017 | 7:52 PM

NEW YORK: Parents’ exposure to chemicals often used as disinfectants and preservatives in household and personal products such as detergents, shampoos and conditioners may be associated with birth defects in children, researchers have warned.

Photosynthesis may help treat heart disease

Photosynthesis may help treat heart disease

16 Jun 2017 | 9:18 PM

BOSTON: Stanford scientists have found that using blue-green algae and light to trigger photosynthesis inside the heart could help treat cardiac disease, the top cause of death globally.

Broccoli may help manage diabetes

Broccoli may help manage diabetes

15 Jun 2017 | 7:02 PM

LONDON:Eating broccoli sprouts may help diabetes patients manage their blood sugar, according to a new study which offers a much needed alternative to address the worldwide epidemic.

We all knew it, now its official: French fries can kill you

We all knew it, now its official: French fries can kill you

15 Jun 2017 | 10:35 AM

MOSCOW: Yes, it's painful but unfortunately true. Munching on those golden sticks of starchy goodness will most certainly accelerate your demise.

New ‘real sun-tan’ drug may help prevent cancer

New ‘real sun-tan’ drug may help prevent cancer

14 Jun 2017 | 11:24 PM

WASHINGTON: Scientists have developed a new drug that mimics sunlight to make a person’s skin tan without being exposed to harmful ultraviolet radiation, reducing the risk of skin cancer.

  • SpectrumIt’s not bad blood

    It’s not bad blood

    Menstruation — for a long time this word had only been spoken in hushed voices, a little uncomfortably or in embarrassed tones, usually as part of girly talk.

  • This war horse still gallops in Manila

    Is it a jeep? Is it a taxicab? Is it a jitney? Is it a mural? Or just a jeep turned into a quirky art canvas? And what do you call it? A dyipni? A jeepney? What is its age? First generation? Second generation, or third? In the Philippines, a four-wheeler packed with people can intrigue the visitor.

  • North to South, taste of Vietnam

    Vietnam, a vibrant Southeast Asian country with a unique heritage, is a foodie’s haven. From local breads to delicious soups to street food, there is something to satisfy everyone’s palate.

more Spectrum...