SPORTS & WELLNESS
 


BUt & BOLT
Still undecided about his participation in the Commonwealth Games, champion sprinter Usain Bolt has kept the fans on tenterhooks, writes K. DATTA
With still no word of confirmation coming from Usain Bolt about his participation in the Commonwealth Games in Delhi in October, track and field fans are puzzled as to what exactly is on the mind of the three-time Olympic gold medallist in 2008 at Beijing and world record-holding champion sprinter at the Berlin World Championships last year.








Illustration: Sandeep Joshi


HEAD START

South African fans kiss a replica of the World Cup during a recent friendly match between South Africa and Bulgaria in Soweto Photos: Reuters A worker of a helmet factory wears a makarapa designed for fans of the US soccer team in Wyneburg. The King of South Africa's makarapa fan helmet has moved from his township workshop to a factory to meet the World Cup demand. It is expected to become a global craze

Fitness mantra
ACID TEST
B. N. Behera
When after a heavy meal, a loud burp comes out from the mouth, it is not a sign of a good diet. Rather, credit it to acidity, indigestion and flatulence. We are more prone to suffer from these problems during summer, as we are fond of consuming highly spicy and fat-rich meals and fried snacks. Acidity denotes excess of acid production in the stomach. Indigestion means there is no proper digestion of the ingested food, which results in discomfort and diarrhoea. Flatulence means the bloating sensation, distension and passage of a lot of gas.

   

 

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BUt & BOLT
Still undecided about his participation in the Commonwealth Games, champion sprinter Usain Bolt has kept the fans on tenterhooks, writes K. DATTA

A supporter cheers for Jamaica's Usain Bolt at the menís 200 m event in the IAAF Diamond league athletics meet in Shanghai
A supporter cheers for Jamaica's Usain Bolt at the menís 200 m event in the IAAF Diamond league athletics meet in Shanghai Photo: AFP

With still no word of confirmation coming from Usain Bolt about his participation in the Commonwealth Games in Delhi in October, track and field fans are puzzled as to what exactly is on the mind of the three-time Olympic gold medallist in 2008 at Beijing and world record-holding champion sprinter at the Berlin World Championships last year.

The feats of the planetís fastest man from Jamaica in the last two years have raised his iconic status to the level of that of Black boxing legend Muhammad Ali, with many even stretching the imagination to the extent of comparing him to Martin Luther King or Barack Obama. His appearance on the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium track will lend irresistible glamour to the Commonwealth Games. No commonwealth athlete has dominated the short sprints the way Bolt has. Bolt ran the 200 metres in an electrifying 19.56 seconds, the fourth fastest timing ever for the event, in the Jamaica International Invitational. So packed was the stadium that the fire brigade thought it safe to close the gates. This at a time when the World Twenty20 cricket was on in the West Indies. Bolt had come home straight from running the anchor in a sensational 8.79 seconds in the Pennsylvania Relays, taking the Jamaicans to victory in 37.90secs in the 4 x 100 m event.

Bolt then flew to South Korea to win the 100 metres in the Daegu Diamond League meet in 9.86secs. That was the 17th time that the young Jamaican superstar had clocked a sub -10secs 100m sprint. The next stop was Shanghai, where Bolt outclassed the opposition to win the 200 metres in 19.76 seconds on Sunday last. Bolt holds the world 200 m record at 19.19.

Now, what exactly is preventing Bolt from making a final commitment about coming to Delhi in October? Suresh Kalmadi, chief of the Commonwealth Games Organising Committee, had quite categorically declared that the Jamaican would take part. But word from Bolt himself is what track fans would like to hear before buying their tickets to the showpiece event of the Commonwealth Games.

After the 19.56 sprint at the Jamaican Invitational Bolt is reported to have said that in a season in which there were no major international meets, he was looking forward to competitions in Europe where he would be running showdown races against the likes of compatriot Asafa Powell, Americans Tyson Gay and Justin Gatlin, who has returned to the track after serving a four-year ban for taking performance-enhancing drugs. As for the Commonwealth Games, his coach had not taken a final decision, Bolt added.

A wealthy man at 23, Bolt, who, after winning his three gold medals at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, made the handsome gesture of donating $50,000 to Chinaís earthquake victims, is reported to command a six-figure appearance money, amounting to several crores. Without intending any insinuations, if appearance money deals are there, then you canít keep middlemen out. Only a couple of months ago, Vijay Kumar Malhotra had ruffled a few feathers by stating that the Commonwealth Games were a "middlemenís delight", though the BJP leader and president of the Archery Association of India had said it in a different context.

Many years earlier, Olympic gold medallist Carl Lewis of the USA and pole-vaulting legend Sergei Bubka of the erstwhile Soviet Union had made appearances on the Nehru Stadium track. No one knows what appearance money, if any, was paid. In any case, both were forgettable appearances. The ponytailed Lewis was, in fact, beaten by an Austrian sprinter. As for Bubka, he abandoned his jumps, saying he couldnít get a firm enough grip on his pole in the Delhi weather. But if Bolt does, in fact, turn up in Delhi in October, it will be an occasion to remember. Those lucky to see him in the flesh could, years later, tell their grandchildren how a tall, muscular young man, rather too tall to be a sprint champion at 6í 5", raced to the tape in the 100 metres in 40-odd giant strides.

In fact, all Jamaican sprinters, of both genders, in their black, green and gold vests, will be the star attraction of the CWG athletics competition. Donít forget, Shelly-Ann Fraser, the womenís Olympic and world champion, is Jamaican. It need hardly be said our sprinters donít belong to such an exalted company. The only Commonwealth Games track gold medal stands in the name of Milkha Singh, who won the quarter mile race at Cardiff in 1958.

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Fitness mantra
ACID TEST
B. N. Behera

When after a heavy meal, a loud burp comes out from the mouth, it is not a sign of a good diet. Rather, credit it to acidity, indigestion and flatulence. We are more prone to suffer from these problems during summer, as we are fond of consuming highly spicy and fat-rich meals and fried snacks.

Acidity denotes excess of acid production in the stomach. Indigestion means there is no proper digestion of the ingested food, which results in discomfort and diarrhoea. Flatulence means the bloating sensation, distension and passage of a lot of gas.

Signs and symptoms
The symptoms of acidity are sour eructation, heartburn, pain in the abdomen, discomfort and, at times, vomiting. Sometimes, it is very difficult to differentiate it from regurgitation and gastro esophageal reflux disease (GERD). GERD may be associated with respiratory symptoms like recurrent bouts of cough, wheezing and aspiration. Indigestion occurs because of overeating, junk foods, high intake of milk and milk products, a lot of cold beverages, fruits/ fruit juices etc. The excess of undigested material reaches the colon and bacterial action in the colon results in distension, bloating and diarrhoea. The secondary lactose (milk) intolerance is an occurrence that follows an acute attack of diarrhoea.

Flatulence is nothing but a bloating sensation due to the production of excess gas, which is very common after indigestion. There is distention of the abdomen, discomfort and passage of a lot of flatus or, at times, bleaching which gives relief from the symptoms of flatulence. Aerophagia (air swallowing) is very common. Eating and drinking rapidly, chewing gum and smoking are responsible for aerophagia.

Specific causes
In case of acidity, during stress, the acid production may be more. This is due to prolonged starvation, eating of junk and spicy foods and drugs like NSAIDS (non- steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs). This can induce hyperacidity and breaks in the mucosal barrier, resulting in gastric erosions, gastric ulcer or duodenal ulcer.

The occurrence of acidity, indigestion and flatulence are interrelated. The practice of frequent intake of junk foods, cold beverages and excess intake of fruits/juices and overeating can lead to indigestion. Prolonged sitting in front of the computer, TV, and sedentary habits add to the problem. In some cases, it has been observed that the intake of the above-mentioned items can lead to obesity because of short chain fatty acids. Food allergies are also an important cause of indigestion. The bloating sensation results in distension, discomfort and passage of lots of fluids due to indigestion only. The stress of studies, examinations, competition, strict discipline, sedentary habits, accidents, injuries etc also play an important role.

Certainly, excess intake of tea and coffee to remain awake at night is a causative factor. People are falling prey to alcohol or alcohol-like beverages and gutka is also responsible for indigestion and its consequences. The symptoms of acidity, indigestion and flatulence can be alarming when there is abdominal distension, weight loss etc. Therefore, people must consult the doctor immediately, because, at times, these symptoms may be stimulating serious underlying pathological problems.

colon coolants

n Have a balanced homemade diet at a proper time.
n Small and frequent meals at regular intervals are advised.
n At least five meals per day are advisable.
n Always include cereals, pulses, milk products and vegetables in the daily diet.
n Consume curd/yogurt twice a day.
n Proper breakfast must be taken.
n Alcohol and smoking is strictly prohibited.
n Sleep early and get up early.
n Take regular exercise.
n Chew properly and eat slowly.
n Weight reduction is advisable if body weight is more than ideal.
n Donít lie down for two hours after meals.
n Intake of bedtime milk is avoidable due to reflux.
n Avoid prolonged sitting in front of the TV, computer or other sedentary habits.
n Avoid excess intake of tea or coffee.


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