Off we go again
Power steering 
The 4 X 4 Off Roaders Club rally saw many women proving their mettle on a rough terrain 

Jasmine Singh

Of course women can do just about everything that men can do. Driving. She has been doing that for ages. Driving a 4X4? What's the big deal about it! Off roading? Well, she is picking up that too. Sunday morning saw women from the 4X4 Off Roaders Club, along with other members getting dirty with their machines. And, who would know it better than the pretty ladies as how to bring the gaadi back on the track if it goes off track. This is something they have been conditioned for. At the rally they did just the same. They started their journey from the Chandigarh Club, covered 50-60 kms on 4X4's. In between they encountered slush and dirt, which made them to slow down their speed. Some managed to cross it with their 'smartness', others couldn't. But with help from the other members they managed to get back on the track. Now, this sounds so much like every women's story of life! A rally sure is - story of life.

Offers Billy Gill, president, 4X4 off roaders club, "The idea of the club behind organising this rally is to bring people who like to drive 4X4 together on day like this. In fact, we have a good participation from women this time. They seem to be equally excited about the rally."

Provides Harita Singh Aulakh from the city who drives Bolero. Driving to her is an expression of freedom. "It might sound weird. But, I feel, if I can handle a heavy machine (it looks heavy), I can have grip over any situation in life." About off roading, she sees more women taking part in it. "We know of women rallyist, but these are few in number. I am sure in coming time we would have an all-women rallyist team."

The 4x4 off roaders club gives the members a change to take their machines off tarmac and see how it reacts in the rough stuff. But to cash on the fun and excitement you need to know the vehicle well. We wonder if women are good with it. "Sure, we are," echo a group of university girls, Simran Kaur, Tarundeep Mahal and Sakshi Bajaj, who drive a Toyota. "We know the machine like the back of our hand. Do you think girls can only drive swanky cars or take them to the petrol station? We know how to take care of them and to rectify the faults as well." One basic trick - learn what you and your vehicle can do but leave your ego at home. What say ladies? "Ya, every vehicle has limitations like relationships, says Sakshi. In such condition either you should know that a machine is capable of such faults. You can either back off or try to look for an alternate, and if you can't leave it." Didn't we say, it sounds like a relationship, going through a topsy-turvy surface, trying to get on to the smooth surface.

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Girls just wanna have fun
Women's Day celebrations saw the fairer sex hit the road for a joy ride
Neha Walia

So, what is women liberation? Unending debates on reservations for women, making umpteen laws on issues like child marriage, domestic violence, dowry, that still are effective on paper, basic education, bringing fatter paychecks home, going in for live-ins, carrying forward the political batons from their male counterparts, or just wearing jeans or dressing up the way you want, or joining the Pink Panty brigade. What is women liberation? Is it as complex an issue as the nuclear deal or just another phenomenon whose definition changes with time?

Well, Saturday morning saw city women giving a simple yet marking answer to women liberation movement. It means having uninhibited fun, with a dash of adventure and your partner by the side. And each of the 30 participants of the Women's Car Rally held by on Saturday to celebrate Women's Day, swore by how 'liberated' they felt. The rally, flagged off from Yadvindra Public School, was the third edition of the annual event and organised in collaboration with the Vintage and Classic car rally. It included 80 kms drive up to Barog, and the event saw 30 women participants and 22 vintage cars.

The femme brigade included IT professionals, housewives, doctors, lawyers, IPS, IRS officers among students and others. Supreet Dhillon, founder, Chandigarh Adventure Trekking and Sports (CATS), whose diet includes a regular dose of adventure, was the leader when it comes to celebrating the spirit of womanhood. "We are here to make a statement about the women power. This rally has nine teams from CATS with 27 members participating and joining in the celebrations," she said. Though with a first time experience, amateur was the word for most of the participants, the passion and excitement was unmatched. Another such party pooper was Gurveen H Singh, a city-based lawyer participating for the second time. "Last time, I had no idea about a rally drive, but this time I am ready with my daughter Inayat by my side," she said. Well, and if it’s not a hardcore offroading that she is expecting then it's all for a good lunch.

With their can't-wait-to-happen attitude and all the calculations in place, the ladies were ready for some roadtrip. Breaking conventions that come attached with the term rally, there were no mean machines or heavy-duty gadgets to navigate, but a whole caravan of Altos, Taveras, Swifts, and even the dependable Maruti 800.

And of course, while the women were busy behind the wheels, they had inexhaustible support coming from the left seat, with their husbands, fathers, fathers-in-law, brothers, fiancés, in short, the men in their life, navigating and guiding them here too. "I believe that women are to be celebrated everyday. It is a good idea for representing a society that believes in what it says, the true meaning of women liberation is freedom from conventions," says Supreet. Sure, and this rally is just about that. And, of course, winning too.

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Vintage rally

The day also saw Vintage and classic car rally, with an aim to create awareness for safety rules and preserving heritage on wheels. The Vintage category saw over 20 participants and was open to all cars manufactured prior to 1939, the Classic category with cars manufactured prior to 1960, while the Neo Classic category with cars manufactured prior to 1975. Colourful turnout of Vintage & Classic cars was something to look out for and a host of special prizes made the day eventful. Like the best-dressed couple, the best period costume to compliment the vintage car, the best looking vintage and classic car, the oldest vintage car and the oldest classic car.

India's Razzies

The Indian Golden raspberries are here! After a host of awards celebrating the Best in Indian cinema over the previous year, the ''best of the worst'' in Indian cinema in 2008 were recognised at a unique award function here last night.
The worst movie award went to Love Story 2050.
The worst movie award went to Love Story 2050. Katrina Kaif was chosen for Dara Singh Award for the Worst Accent'. Himesh Reshammiya was adjudged the worst actor for his performance in Karzzzz. (Clockwise from the top) 

Held at the India Habitat Centre in the Capital, the first Annual Golden Kela Awards, inspired by the Golden Raspberries or the Razzies of the United States, became a platform to acknowledge the worst cinematic excellence in the year 2008.

Singer, music director and actor Himesh Reshammiya was adjudged the worst actor for his performance in Karzzzz, the remake of 80s hit Karz while Priyanka Chopra was selected the worst actress of 2008 for Love Story 2050 at the awards ceremony where renowned satirist and comedian Jaspal Bhatti was the chief guest.

Harry Baweja's sci-fi film Love Story 2050 also won several other honours at the awards which included the worst Film award and the worst debutant actor award for Harman Baweja.

Kunal Kohli was selected the worst director for his direction in the film Thoda Life Thoda magic while Bollywood heartthrob Salman Khan was chosen the worst supporting actor for Hello and Kangana Ranaut was selected as the worst supporting actress for Fashion.

Debutante Anoushka Sharma was adjudged the worst debutant actress for her performance in Rab Ne bana Di Jodi.

The award for 'Most Atrocious Lyrics' went to Anvita Dutt Guptani for the song Lucky Boy from Bachna Ae Haseeno while the honour for the 'Most Irritating Song of the Year' went to Tandoori Nights from Karzzzz. The award for 'Most Original Story' went to Harri Puttar.

The awards ceremony also saw awards being handed out in some special categories like Bawra Ho Gaya Hai Ke (have you gone nuts) award, the 'When Did This Come Out' awards, the 'Lajja award for worst treatment of a serious issue' award, Insensitivity award, Exceptional dialogue delivery award and 'Dara Singh Award for the Worst Accent'.

Ram Gopal Verma got the 'Bawra Ho Gaya Hai Ke' award for everything he did during 2008 while the Rajesh Khanna-starrer Wafaa got the 'When Did This Come Out' award. Kamal R Khan's Deshdrohi got the 'Lajja award for worst treatment of a serious issue' while Fashion was given the Insensitivity award and Tushar Kapoor won the Exceptional dialogue delivery award.

The beautiful Katrina Kaif was chosen for the 'Dara Singh Award for the Worst Accent'.

Needless to say, none of the awardees were present at the function to receive their respective awards.

The nominations for the awards, instituted by the Random magazine, were decided by the magazine's board and winner decided selected on the basis of an online poll.

Said the editor of magazine, ''there are numerous award ceremonies each year that celebrate the best of Hindi cinema but so far there have not been one that celebraters the worst. Despite the year end lists and compilations by critics and TV channels of the Worst, there is no real voice announcing the worst cinematic excellence in a given year. Hence, the Golden Kela Awards are there which are inspired by the Golden Raspberries or the Razzies of the US.

Speaking on the occasion, Mr Bhatti, who was awarded the Lifetime Achievement award for his invaluable contribution in generating classless comedy, said, ''I hope that the Golden Kela becomes the symbol of shame in non-creativity. I am thankful for all my stereotyping, low thinking friends who have misguided me from time to time with their outmoded ideas.'' On being given the Lifetime Achievement award, Mr Bhatti said, ''this award was long due to me. The kind of unrelenting hard work and energy I have been putting to generate third class comedy, I think I deserve it the best.'' — UNI

Art for all

Describing art as a great binder between people of different religions, castes and communities across borders, superstar Shahrukh Khan today said art could bring about tremendous change in the atmosphere of hate prevailing across the world in general and India in particular.

''Art can change all of us, turn around and refresh all of us. It can change terrible things. Light and darkness is part of life, and if we do fall down just get up and keep going, and this is what art teaches us. It plays a crucial role in recharghing ourselves the actor said at the India Today Conclave 2009.

Addressing the session "Bollywood: Can Art Overcome Hate, the King Khan described art and religion as a binder.

''When I was a child, I listened to Michael Jackson not because he was Mikhaail or Masood but because I like his music. This is accepting art without religion,'' he said.

Shahrukh further said people should stop using God's name for spreading hatred.

''Allah has not sanctioned any war holy or any other,'' he continued.

The King Khan said it would be utopian to think that art can overcome hate, yet he could say for sure that there was no place for religious discrimination in the film industry.

Shahrukh said the situation in the world had deteriorated.

''There is no hiding place now. We are all entirely vulnerable today in the aftermath of the Mumbai attacks,'' he felt.— UNI

Woman behind success

Indian actress Freida Pinto is making waves internationally for her walk down the Oscar red carpet, her designer gowns and gracing the covers of popular magazines, thanks to Slumdog Millionaire. But not many know the woman who helped groom her and introduced her to British director Danny Boyle.

Sushma Puri, a grooming instructor and owner of Elite Model Management India in New Delhi and Mumbai, groomed and launched Freida when she began her career in modelling in 2005. Freida's photograph was among those of a few others that Puri had sent to Loveleen Tandon, the casting director of Slumdog Millionaire. And now she just can't stop praising here protege.

"My agency has worked very closely with the casting team of Slumdog Millionaire. We received a call from Loveleen Tandon's office when they were casting for the movie.

"We sent pictures of some of the girls who fit the brief. Freida was immediately put on the short list. She went on to audition for the part. Over the next six months, we were asked to send Freida many times over for various screen tests. Finally, Boyle personally selected her for the role," Puri told.

Born Oct 18, 1984 in Mumbai, Pinto was a professional model before starring in Slumdog Millionaire as Latika. She also hosted international travel show "Full Circle" on Zee International Asia Pacific between 2006-2008.

"Freida began her modelling career in mid 2005 with Elite. She had never modelled before she signed up with us”. —IANS

Love, deceit and power

Fresh from the success of Dev D, director Anurag Kashyap's latest offering Gulaal is a political drama complete with emotional ingredients like love, greed, deceit and power.

Gulaal, which has Kay Kay Menon in the lead role, took shape in 2001 but was delayed due to myriad reasons. The film, which is dedicated to all poets with a vision for India, is finally set to hit the theatres Friday (March 13).

Set in Rajpur, a fictional city in Rajasthan, the film revolves around a member of the erstwhile royal family who wants to go back to the days of royalty and become the ruler of the state.

"The movie is based on politics and as usual is very hard-hitting. Gulaal is very easily going to be one of my best movies," Kashyap told.

Gulaal, a Zee Limelight production, also stars Aditya Srivastav, Piyush Mishra, Mahie Gill, Raj Singh Chaudhary, Mukesh Bhatt, Ayesha Mohan, Abhimanyu Singh, Deepak Dobriyal, Pankaj Jha and Jessie Randhawa.

The story is about about a student Dileep (Raja Choudhary) who comes to Jaipur to study, accompanied by his servant Bhanwar (Mukesh Bhatt).

Against the backdrop of a local political conspiracy, the film begins with a Rajput conglomerate gaining strength as an erstwhile royal Dukey Bana (Kay Kay Menon) and a few other ex-royals convince a reluctant Ransa (Abhimanyu Singh) to contest for college elections on behalf of the Rajputana party.

The main fight is then between Ransa and Kiran (Ayesha Mohan) for the general secretary's post.

The rivalry between the two groups intensifies and eventually leads to Ransa being killed by Kiran's brother. Dileep is then asked to contest the election by the Rajputana party.

"Gulaal" races to its climax where a face is revealed - the face of the new leader. 

Kylie' s Mumbai outing

Australian pop star Kylie Minogue, who is in India for a shoot of a Bollywood film, Blue, has termed her brush with Bollywood as a totally new experience.

Talking to reporters about her experience here on Friday, the Australian singer said that although she has worked in music videos, working along Bollywood actors was altogether a different experience.

"I think the experience has been intense, fundamentally many things I have done before particularly making music videos but in Bollywood with that many people in a studio and the pace with which they work, it makes something that might in many respects its things I have done before but it was a totally new experience," she added.

She candidly opined that the concept of crossover of actors between Hollywood and Bollywood would give to a better output.

"I think it s very interesting what happening at the moment but if I have been invited and take part in a Bollywood movie, it surely must be saying something about what the feeling is there in the industry at the moment," she said. — ANI

Creative battleground
Archo 09 is all about colours and competitions 
Manpriya Khurana

Now we're talking-The façade, the entrance, the doorway and just about every brick at the Chandigarh College of Architecture pointed something's brewing. Bunch of enthusiastic kids, backdrop of noises, chaos, clutter and confusion blending into something meaningful as if with a purpose. Someone shouts, 'Are microphone's proper' the other had an equipment resembling a battery and loads of questions on his face, while yet another screams, 'sketch pens are not allowed'. It's the college's annual affair with creativity - Archo 09. Told you we are talking!

So, where do we begin? From the college? Its students? The festival? Events? What? Certain specifics had even our most 'conditioned antennae' up! And considering it's a 15-day event, the beginning just had to be made. Sooner the better! Spelling in one breath, day three had girls cricket, sand art, glass painting, lamp shade, sketching with music, product design, volleyball, throw ball, kite flying, movie, salad dressing, huh! sandwiched in the itinerary. Says Bheem Malhotra, faculty, Chandigarh College of Architecture, as we take a seat in his room, "All year round these kids are busy with assignments. This is one time when they can come together and have a blast. This is refreshing for them." The poster of Archo 2002 on the wall adjacent, substantiating the historical value. He answers, "This was when we had body painting as one of the activities. Several new ones enter each year and some are discarded. Students and faculty together zero-in on the events." He adds, "They have been practicing till four in the evening, working till 11 at night." For now, the techno-fusion music resembling club beats catches the attention. The fifth competition of the day is on and students are supposed to paint while the music is on. Does it help them in their course in any way? Who cares, anyways! Affirms Bheem Malhotra, "Sure it does. In this field, one needs creativity too and this is the time when students can unleash it." Looks like they really unleashed it. Man! Stiff competition for the neighbouring Government College of Art.

There was sand art that had students going abstract with sand on a floor. The end results sported nomenclatures 'The horizon never ends', 'enlightenment in the Himalayas' to 'Nirvana'. Glass painting had students working their way with two allotted colours on glass bowls. Smiles Jaspuneet Kaur, a fourth year student, "This is one time when we come together and have fun, all creative, refreshing and liberating. We look forward to it all year round."

Also note. It's a personal affair. For the students, by the students and of the students. The festival has three of the college's houses, Kanishka, Kalinga and Maurya, turning enemies for the battle of events. Whoever thought they shed the lovable patriotic house culture way back in school just like uniforms? The university departments and surrounding colleges producing clones of 'me too festivals' can learn a thing or two!

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Fiza's story

Two ways to look about everything. At least all the International Women's Day events. So there we were; with everything in place, the dais, the microphones, the reception bouquets, the long guest list. Throw in political persons, human rights commission activists, local NGOs, media's current favourite, in this case Fiza and cameras rolling, with speeches bordering on female foeticide, women empowerment, domestic violence, blah blah. Now, comes the other way. There was chairperson, Punjab State Human Rights Commission, several NGO's coming together, an elderly lady still active making up to stage without help, speaking of her organisation, school kids of Jingle Bell School, putting up a show together with even special child in-between, a gesture, an effort, everything commendable.

Drifting to the other part of the event, the guest of honour, Fiza. There are two ways to look about her too. One of the critique's that brandishes her as media crazy, opportunist, manipulative, publicity hungry woman. The other, that empathises, calls her a victim, sufferer of political arrogance and fickle mindedness, not just alone but lonely fighting big-wigs. Says Arvind Thakur, international human rights councilor, on his choice of the guest of honour, "She is a tough fighter. The way she is fearlessly battling politicians stands for the epitome of feminine qualities of persistence and boldness." Told you, two ways to look at everything. Which way? The ball's in your court. —TNS

Launch PAD
Six packs
Feature packed entry level mobile sets launched

Samsung Mobile today strengthened its popular Guru series with the launch of 6 new, feature packed handsets - Guru 1070, Guru 1100, Guru 1125, Guru 1210, Guru 1310 and Guru 1410 in the Indian market. Speaking at the launch of the new Guru Series handsets Sunil Dutt, country head, telecom business division, Samsung India Electronics Pvt. Ltd. stated, "Introduction of innovative new phones across various consumer segments contributed to the success of Samsung mobile business in the Year 2008.Going forward, we will continue with our 'Next is What' positioning in this Year and will enhance our product portfolio across the multimedia and touch screen handset segment as well." The new dual band Guru series marks the first of the Company's new product introductions in this year.

The Samsung Guru 1070 and Guru 1100 are two new additions that offer the Bright Torch Light feature. The handsets come with bright torch light of upto 40 hours and 20 hours respectively, and 12 hours of uninterrupted talk time. Add to that the 65K Colour CSTN display, Advanced Mobile tracker, speakerphone and 40 polyphonic ringtones. Samsung Guru 1100, offers multimedia features such as MP3 downloadable ringtones, pre-embedded bollywood ringtones and the popular Java game - Sudoku. The Guru 1070 represents the entry level in the Guru series, with its pricing of Rs.1649/- and the Guru 1100 is priced at Rs.1779/-. The Mobile Prayer feature in the Guru 1100 and Guru 1125, provides consumers with options to set their mobile prayer as per their religious preference.

The Samsung Guru 1125, Guru 1210 and Guru 1310 are the latest additions to the Guru FM enabled handsets. While the Guru 1125 and Guru 1210 have a candy type bar design, the Guru 1310 has an attractive clamshell with Glossy front design.

The Samsung Guru 1125 comes with a long Battery talk time and an uninterrupted Stereo FM playability for up to 17 hours. The Guru 1210 offers 12 hours of talk time and consumers can enjoy uninterrupted Stereo FM up to 20 hours. These handsets come with 65K cColour cstn display, advanced mobile tracker and 40 polyphonic ringtones. In addition, the Hinglish database enables users to communicate in a blend of Hindi and English. The call time limit feature allows users to personally set a talk time limit per month, in order to put a cap on their talk time. While the Samsung Guru1125 is priced at Rs 2149/-, the Guru 1210 and Guru 1310 are priced at Rs 2259/- and Rs 2649/- respectively.

The highpoint of the new additions to the Guru series handsets is the Guru 1410 that can play Mp3 files on its built-in dual loud speakers. With advanced features like 4 MB built-in memory expandable up to 2 GB, Stereo FM with recording and Bluetooth packed in a Guru series handset, the Guru 1410 offers rich multimedia experience to the consumers. Packaged with a Micro SD memory card of 1GB, the Guru 1410 is priced at Rs. 3,429/-. — TNS

Saturday night
Live band Elements entertained the city crowd with electronic music beats

Saturday night saw crowd swaying to the tunes of Elements as Eristoff celebrated the first ever Howling Nights in Chandigarh at RIO-43 on Saturday. The band comprising the trio- Gopi, percussionist, Manoj, violinist and Gopu, DJ was formed in the year 2008. As individuals, Gopi is a renowned musician whose immense talent to create music out of anything makes him remarkable in the field of musicians.

In the past, he has been instrumental of various bands such as Antaragni and Mukti. Manoj is a renowned classical violinist and also a music director in Malayalam film fraternity. Known as a jack-of-all-trades, DJ Gopu is a renowned vocalist, an anchor and now a DJ. The band's innovation on various aspects of music has earned this group status and name down South. The live band enthralled the audience with their electronic music beats. — TNS

Play it safe
These celebs can teach you a thing or two about protecting skin and hair from the effects of synthetic colours 
Ashima Sehajpal

Endless instructions and advices at times are simply not enough to encourage us to play Holi. We hide, run away from friends and relatives or even lock ourselves in, but that's not how we can enjoy this festival. To inspire you to go out and play with colours, we talk to some celebs, who lets us know the safety measures they will be taking on the day to protect their skin from allergies and hair from damaging.

Organic beauty

Amrita Thapar It didn't surprise us at all when former Miss India Universe Amrita Thapar told us about her jumbo list of precautions she takes on Holi, "Skin care is important for any model and I don't take it causally." She will be celebrating the festival after a gap of four years and plans to make it a memorable day. "I am not going to shy away from colours but will take precautions to keep my skin safe. I will apply coconut oil to shield my skin from the harmful effects of colours. Also, I will make sure that just like me, all my friends also use only organic colours."

Amrita Thapar 

Head to toe

Ashima Bhalla Past experiences of celebrating holi haven't been very pleasant experience for her but that would not keep actor Ashima Bhalla away from celebrating it, "Last year my friends threw paint at me that was difficult to wash away. I had to clean myself with kerosene oil to remove it." This year, this small-screen actor wouldn't be taking any risk, "I am going to wear full-sleeve clothes and cover myself as much I can to avoid chemical colours. Also, I'll pour coconut oil all over me so that the colours don't harm my skin or hair. To keep my teeth free from colour, I'll put dental caps as well." 

Ashima Bhalla 

Tooth and nail

Sooraj ThaparAnd it is not just women who are bothered about shielding their bodies and face from synthetic colours, men too are worried and willing to take every possible precaution. Sooraj Thapar, a TV actor, tells us how, "It takes around a week to get rid of the colours completely if you don't use any precautions. To avoid the same, I am going to apply transparent nail enamel on my nails and lots of moisturiser on my body and face. I preserve a pair old shoes for Holi every year " That's not all, Sooraj seems to make more efforts than women, "I wear a pair of glasses too to protect my eyes and use special oil meant to protect hair from Holi colors."

Sooraj Thapar

Waist management
Abdominal obesity leads to a cluster of problems

Carrying excess weight around the middle can impair lung function, adding to a long list of health problems associated with belly fat, said French researchers.

Abdominal obesity is already linked with diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease as part of a cluster of health problems known collectively as metabolic syndrome.

Researchers have now shown that a large waist measure mentis strongly associated with decreased lung function, regardless of other complicating factors that affect the lungs such as overall obesity and smoking. The researchers analyzed health information about 120,000 people in France, assessing demographic background, smoking history, alcohol consumption, as well as lung function with respect to a measure of obesity known as body mass index, waist circumference and other measures of metabolic health.

"We found a positive independent relationship between lung function impairment and metabolic syndrome due mainly to abdominal obesity," Dr. Natalie Leone of the French National Institute for Health and Medical Research wrote in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine. The researchers defined abdominal obesity as having a waist circumference of greater than 35 inches (89 cm) for women and 40 inches (101 cm) for men. Several large studies have linked poor lung function with higher rates of deaths and hospitalization from heart disease, the researchers said.

While it was not clear from the study, the researchers think belly fat may impair the way the diaphragm and chest function. Fat tissue is also known to increase inflammation in

the body, which may be playing a role, they said. Although the reasons may not be clear, Dr. Paul Enright of the University of Arizona said in a commentary there is now enough evidence to include waist measurements as part of routine assessments of lung function.

"Abdominal obesity could then be highlighted on the printed report so that the physician interpreting the report could take the effect of obesity into account," Enright wrote. —Reuters

Matter of heart
Depression a bigger culprit when it comes to heart diseases

A new study suggests that depression increases the risk of heart disease more than genetics. Led by researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis and the VA, the study was presented at the annual meeting of the American Psychosomatic Society this week in Chicago this week.

Describing the study, the researchers revealed that they analysed data gathered from more than 1,200 male twins, who had served in the U.S. military during the Vietnam War. The researchers said that the men were surveyed on a variety of health issues in 1992, including depression, and were assessed again in 2005.

During the course of study, the researchers focused on the onset of heart disease in depressed study participants between 1993 and 2005. According to them, men with depression in 1992 were twice as likely to develop heart disease in the ensuing years, compared to those without history of depression. "Based on our findings, we can say that after adjusting for other risk factors, depression remains a significant predictor of heart disease," says first author Dr. Jeffrey F. Scherrer, research assistant professor of psychiatry at Washington University School of Medicine and the St. Louis Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

"In this study, we have demonstrated that exposure to depression is contributing to heart disease only in twins who have high genetic risk and who actually develop clinical depression. In twins with high genetic risk common to depression and heart disease, but who never develop depression itself, there was no increased risk for heart disease. The findings strongly suggest that depression itself independently contributes to risk for heart disease," he added. The researchers said that they were searching for evidence of what they call incident heart disease, an event like a heart attack, heart surgery, stent placement or medical treatment for angina.— ANI

BODY wise
Keep it balanced
Sachin Kalra

These days everywhere we go, we get conflicting advice on diet - what's good and what's bad. This makes making a right choice difficult. It is important to learn the difference between healthy and unhealthy eating. Making a few simple healthy and nutritious changes in our dietary choices can have a positive impact on our health, well-being, energy levels and life span

The key is to 'keep it balanced'. A balanced diet includes all the essential macronutrients in your daily meals. A varied, balanced diet provides the nutrients your body needs for energy and to prevent disease. Non-nutrients, such as fiber and photochemical, found in a variety of plant foods, are also important. These are the components of a healthy diet:


Use fat in moderation. Your goal should be 30 per cent or fewer calories coming from fat. Spreading this daily allowance of fats throughout the day increases the feeling of fullness and helps keep food moist and palatable. Fat is important for many bodily functions: it provides insulation, carries fat-soluble vitamins we all need, and provides a reserve energy supply for the body. Fat is a concentrated source of energy commonly found in animal products, oils, nuts, and seeds.


Include carbs, especially fiber in your diet. Carbohydrates are the main source of energy and the easiest form of energy for the body to use. Sugars, starches and fiber are the main forms of carbohydrates. At least 25-30 grams of fiber per day is recommended.

Healthy carbohydrates are high in fiber and are considered complex carbohydrates. Good sources include rolled oats, brown rice, whole wheat, broccoli, squash, green leafy vegetables, sweet potatoes, beans and whole fruit. These help lower cholesterol, aide digestion, regulate blood sugar and insulin levels, and reduce caloric intake.

Unhealthy carbohydrates are high in sugar and are called simple carbohydrates, like candy, white bread, sodas, ice-cream, cake and cookies. These spike blood sugar and insulin levels, and increase caloric intake.


Get your protein from animal or plant sources. Protein needs are individual but usually average between 50-100 gms per day. Proteins are needed for growth, development and tissue repair. They are essential for the formation and function of blood, enzymes, cells, and antibodies to fight disease. Proteins usually come from animal sources but can also

You will receive major health benefits if you eat a lot of fruits and vegetables, lean red meats, legumes, fish, poultry, whole grains, and low-fat dairy products. Some nutritionists suggest a method of filling your plate with one-half vegetables, one-fourth protein, and one-fourth whole grains.

An easy way to make your nutritional choices is to look for foods that are bright in color, for they usually contain more beneficial vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals. For example, red and pink grapefruit have the heart-healthy cancer-fighting antioxidant phytochemical while white grapefruit does not.


F Eat enough fruits and vegetables while staying within your calorie needs. Two cups of fruit and 2 and 1/2 cups of vegetables per day are recommended for someone who needs 2,000 calories daily.

F Choose a variety of fruits and vegetables each day. w Eat six or more servings of whole grains each day.

F Eat four ounces of fish each week.

F Eat fewer than two four-ounce servings of lean red meat a week.

F Limit egg yolks to one per day, including those found in baked goods.

F Use vegetable oils, such as olive and canola.

F Include 1,200 mg of calcium per day by eating two to three servings of dairy products.

F Limit sodium to 2,400 mg per day by eating fewer processed and snack foods.

F Watch your portions. Learn what equals a serving for each of the food groups, and make sure you are not eating larger portions..

F Limit high-fat foods. A low-fat diet will help you manage your weight and reduce your risk for disease, such as heart disease and cancer.

F Eat more homemade and fresh foods.

F Limit foods and liquids that are high in sugar. Beverages and foods that contain sugar add calories. diet.

F Eat plenty of foods high in iron.

F Learn to use the food guide pyramid to make your healthy eating plan.

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