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HindustanTimes Tue,23 Sep 2014

Banana peel makes water safe

Hindustan Times   March 13, 2011
First Published: 00:11 IST(13/3/2011) | Last Updated: 17:05 IST(15/3/2011)

Minced banana peels make excellent water purifiers, decontaminating drinking water of toxic metals better than other purification material. Earlier research has shown plant wastes such as coconut fibre and peanut shell can remove toxins from water. Banana peel works better as it can remove metals such as lead and copper, found in piped and ground water, reports the Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research.

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Depression hurts your kidneys too
Depression increases the risk of kidney failure even after other risk factors such as heart disease, inflammatory markers and lifestyle factors such as weight, smoking, and physical activity have been factored in. A 10-year study of 5,785 people in the US showed that severe depression was 20% more common in people with kidney disease than in those without it, reports the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology. Apart from delays in seeking medical treatment, depression is thought to aggravate the disease by suppressing the immune and nervous systems.

Med platters help the heart and waist
A Mediterranean diet - with lots of fruits, vegetables, beans, nuts, olive oil, poultry and fish, with very little red meat - reverses metabolic syndrome, a cluster of risk factors for heart disease and diabetes. People with the syndrome have belly fat, high blood pressure, low "good" HDL cholesterol, elevated blood fats (triglycerides), and high blood sugar. The condition is diagnosed when a person has three of those risk factors. Besides antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits, the diet trims waists and lowers blood pressure.

Spider venom could be the new viagra
The world's most poisonous spider can help boost your sex life.

Researchers at the Medical College of Georgia say venom from a spider native to Central and South America gives people four-hour erections, and could possibly cure some of the worst cases of impotence - cases not even Viagra could adequately treat.

Phoneutria nigriventer -also called Brazilian wandering spiders or banana spiders - are unsightly creatures said to have some of the world's most toxic venoms. Aside from four hours of supposed pleasure, the venom will also incapacitate a person's muscle control, cause severe pain and trigger breathing problems.

In some cases - if left untreated - it could lead to death. A molecule called called PnTx2-6 stripped from the spider's toxins and administered to the hypertensive rats was found to give a prolonged erection that was side-effect free.


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