Study on rats suggest social interactions after isolation may counteract cravings - The Daily Guardian
Connect with us

Lifestyle & Entertainment

Study on rats suggest social interactions after isolation may counteract cravings

Published

on

Washington [US], February 3 (ANI): Social interaction may help reverse food and cigarette cravings triggered by being in social isolation, a University of South Wales study in rats has found.
The study, published in Scientific Reports, used an animal model of drug addiction to show that a return to social interaction gives the same result as living in a rich, stimulating environment in reducing cravings for both sugar and nicotine rewards.
“This was an animal study, but we can probably all relate to the mental health benefits of being able to go for a coffee with our friends and having a chat,” lead author Dr Kelly Clemens from UNSW Sydney’s School of Psychology said. “Those sorts of activities can divert our attention from being at home and eating and drinking – but they can also be rewarding in and of themselves, and we come away from those interactions feeling relaxed, happy, and valued in a way that means our general demeanour and mental health has improved.”
Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, social isolation was already increasing in Australia, with almost a quarter of Australians reporting feelings of loneliness or social isolation. The researcher said social isolation could have a significant impact on both mental and physical health. It can lead to anxiety, depression, compulsive overeating, and an increased risk of cardiovascular disease and cancer. “Social isolation, in particular, can both lead to increased drug-taking, but can also make it harder for those wanting to cut down or quit,” Dr Clemens said.
The UNSW Scientia Fellow is interested in why people relapse into drug use – in this case, nicotine – when they are socially isolated. “We know that if you’re a regular smoker and you’re trying to give up and then you see somebody else smoking on tv, smell cigarette smoke, or you see a packet of cigarettes, people experience very strong cravings,” she said. “So we wanted to know if isolation increases the likelihood of picking up on those cues, and of initiating cravings.”
Existing evidence tells us that both people and rodents who are anxious, or in a socially isolated environment, pay more attention to substance cues in their environment, she said. These cues are more likely to enter into their long-term memory. “And they can actually have a bigger influence over behaviour later on,” she said.
While many studies have focused on the effect of isolation on adolescents, Dr Clemens concentrated on adult rats in this research. The researcher examined how cues linked to nicotine intake influenced cravings in adult rats in social isolation, and if the cravings could be reversed by returning the animals to group housing. They measured cravings by recording the amount of times the rat pressed a lever to turn on the cue that had been linked to nicotine. The team found that after a brief period of abstinence, the socially isolated rats were much more likely to relapse to nicotine seeking. But their cravings were reversed once they returned to group housing, highlighting the importance of social interaction in the treatment of substance abuse disorders.
“When we put the rats back with their cage mates, they weren’t interested in the cue for the nicotine anymore, and they showed little evidence of relapse,” Dr Clemens said. “The key finding of this particular study is the reversal of susceptibility to relapse with that return to group housing.”
Dr Clemens said she was surprised that the benefit of returning to a social environment was so rapid. “The impact of social isolation took much longer to manifest, suggesting that social interaction may have a lasting protective effect against the development and relapse of addiction,” she said.
The Scientia Fellow said the research demonstrated the consequences of social isolation for drug use are not permanent. “Smokers who want to quit are often provided with a pharmacological response to their addiction. They can access many medications and replacement therapies that can have variable results,” she said. “Our findings suggest that something as simple as socialising with your friends could reduce those cravings and make you less likely to smoke.
This is consistent with other recent evidence that suggested people crave social interaction, and that isolation interacts with the brain’s reward circuitry. “But it’s important to note that this was research done in animals, and how exactly it translates to human behaviour needs to be the subject of further research.”
While the study focused on nicotine, Dr Clemens found a similar result from sugar which was used as a control measure in the study. “This tells us that our results probably extend to other high fat, high sugar food and drinks. It is possible that if we did a similar study with alcohol, and other drugs of abuse, we might find a similar pattern. But we would have to test that specifically.”
Dr Clemens said a follow up study could investigate if social isolation is leading to long term or transient changes in the brain that underly the behavioural changes that she observed. (ANI)

The Daily Guardian is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@thedailyguardian) and stay updated with the latest headlines.

For the latest news Download The Daily Guardian App.

Lifestyle & Entertainment

HEMA SARDESAI SINGS FOR MARGAOTHECLOSEDFILE

Published

on

PANAJI : Renowned playback singer Hema Sardesai on Tuesday said that she is back to work with Music Director Nikhil Kamath of Nikhil-Vinay fame and well known bollywood film director Kapil Kaustubh Sharma . In a post on Facebook, she said, ‘’Back to working with Nikhil Kamath of Nikhil-Vinay fame..and Kapil Kaustubh Sharma well known bollywood film director. God’s Will. Thank you for your kind support. God bless you.’’

Nikhil Kamath said,’’Proud to compose a new song for Kapil Kaustubh Sharma sung and lyrics by Hema Sardesai. It was great working with Hema Sardesai.’’ Director Kapil Kaustubh Sharma said, ‘’Who can forget mesmerizing voice of Hema Sardesai in Awara Bhawre Jo Hole Hole Gaye or Badal Pe Paon Hai from Chak De India or San Sana San or Gupt and many more…Glad to share she sings a fun filled song for MargaoTheClosedFile. She also pens it and the fabulous composition is by Nikhil Kamath. It stars Kittu Gidwani, Pallavi Joshi.”

Continue Reading

Lifestyle & Entertainment

SWARA BHASKER’S NEXT WILL BE A MURDER MYSTERY

Uday Pratap Singh

Published

on

NEW DELHI: Murder mystery as a genre has always been something that grabs a lot of attention, and well, donning the role of an investigating officer once again is Swara Bhasker.

Produced by Moffy Production and co-produced by K.P production the film titled Mimamsa promises to keep you on the edge and will be directed by Gagan Puri. After receiving rave reviews for Flesh, this will be the second time Swara will be seen as a cop. She will take on the role of Adhira Dixit in the movie that is based in Bhopal.

Talking about the same, Swara said, ‘’The experience of shooting for the movie was one of its kind as it kept me invested throughout the shoot and I am sure that the viewers will be too when they get to watch it. This was also the first film I shot for after lockdown last year, and that makes the movie extremely special to me, and it helped me have a sense of gratitude for the work I do. Without revealing much, I am just going to say that the movie will take you on a journey that is layered, is mysterious, and thought-provoking.’’

Continue Reading

Lifestyle & Entertainment

AYUSHMANN SHARES HIS EXPERIENCE ON DOCTOR G

Published

on

NEW DELHI: Bollywood actor Ayushmann Khurrana said that he is lucky that he chose acting as his profession because it has not only enabled him to live so many remarkable characters but has also taken him to so many incredible destinations.

The actor added that this is the first time in his career that he has shot in Bhopal. He said: “For Doctor G, I’m fortunate to be visiting the heart of India and seeing it in its full glory. I’m shooting in Bhopal for the first time in my career and the city of lakes is a beautiful place. I’m bowled over by the warmth of the people and they have won my heart forever.”

Ayushmann feels he is blessed to be born in a beautiful country like India.

“Earlier this year, I was in the North East for Anek and experienced the spectacular Kaziranga National Park. India is the most beautiful place on the planet. I’m blessed to be born in this country which gives me the opportunity to cherish so much in my lifetime,” he added.

Ayushmann has a big lineup of films including “Chandigarh Kare Aashiqui” directed by Abhishek Kapoor, “Anek” by Anubhav Sinha and “Doctor G” helmed by Anubhuti Kashyap.

Continue Reading

Lifestyle & Entertainment

ENTER UNIQUE BESPOKE FURNITURE MADE IN INDIA

Noor Anand Chawla

Published

on

An innate appreciation for one’s abode has been a welcome effect of the pandemic. Finding themselves spending more time at home than ever before, people have begun to re-do their interiors, making their dwellings comfortable yet stylish reflections of themselves. Homegrown furniture brands are doing particularly well due to their ease of access, affordable prices and unique designs. One such brand is Mangrove Collective, co-founded by Suman Sharma in 2015, that witnessed tremendous growth over the last year.

This award-winning collaborative design and build studio, which crafts customised furniture and millwork, is an offshoot of the multidisciplinary architecture and design practice called Studio Lotus. When the studio found it challenging to translate design concepts into reality, they decided to begin making their own pieces. “It’s easy to find people who specialize in a particular material like wood, metal, etc., but to strike a balance between different materials and assimilate regional craft into the work, was a difficult task,” shares Sharma, the Principal and Head of Business at the firm. Mangrove Collective was launched with a vision to use indigenous and largely forgotten crafts, by combining traditional know-how with aspects of engineering.

Born and raised in Lutyen’s-era Delhi, Sharma was greatly inspired by its colonial architecture of bungalows adorned with tall ceilings, fireplaces, and verandahs. She also took inspiration from her father who was a photographer. Pursuing a Master’s degree in Furniture Design from the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad, cemented this love further. Over the years, she has worked with leading lifestyle brands such as Good Earth, Samir Wheaton Design, and Krea, and has also dabbled in her own entrepreneurial ventures such as Viva Design through which she exported furniture, and Sotomoto, where she retailed a range of furniture and lifestyle accessories for children. Sharma also taught at Pearl Academy, New Delhi.

Its identity as a collective sets Mangrove apart from other brands. The team follows a conscious process of celebrating local resources and traditional craftsmanship, by ensuring that designers, craftsmen and clients are equal partners. Sharma explains, “for us, design, art, craft and technology go hand in hand. When we say our work is craft-based it doesn’t mean that our products look ‘hand-crafted’. Depending on the nature of the commission, the requirements, and the function, either handiwork or technology can take precedence over the design of the products. We are constantly challenging ourselves to look at products and processes in a unique manner by combining traditional craftsmanship with state-of-the-art technology.”

Designing high-quality furniture requires a balance between ergonomics, joinery details, functionality and aesthetics. The natural synergy between their furniture designers and artisans enables them to create one-of-a-kind products. “Each product for us is a journey where all stakeholders – the craftsmen, the designers, the technicians, and the consumers have a takeaway – a memory that lasts a lifetime. With every product and commission, we try to feed into the vision and aspirations of the user. We aim to breathe life into spaces and narrate stories by reinterpreting indigenous and largely-forgotten crafts, uniting traditional know-how with engineering to develop exceptional products,” shares Sharma with a smile.

The pandemic induced lockdown and subsequent supply chain disruptions compelled homeowners to look at local brands that are capable of producing furniture at par with international standards. And a homegrown furniture brand can offer a high level of customisation – representative of and suited to the client’s personality and lifestyle. Quite interestingly, the pandemic has resulted in a renewed appreciation for local artisanal skills that allowed furniture brands to incorporate age-old craft forms into furniture, giving them a new meaning in this era.

“Space optimisation has been a top priority during the lockdown, and homeowners have spent a considerable amount of time sprucing up nooks and corners, creating spaces for rest, rejuvenation and recreation. Specifically, when it comes to living areas, we have observed a massive demand for sofas and lounge chairs that strike a fine balance between ergonomics and durability,” shares Sharma.

As a bespoke furniture studio, Mangrove makes pieces mainly on order. However, their experience centre setup in their design studio allows clients to visit and feel the products as they would in real-life. International shipping is available and they have clients in countries like Mauritius, Dubai and London. Each piece is unique and the process of making it depends on the complexity of the product—roughly between twelve to sixteen weeks. Their most popular products are the ones integrated with crafted elements or those whose design reflects the context of the space, in turn resonating with the clients on a deeper level.

At Mangrove, the team attempts to develop pieces that are inspired by traditional crafts interpreted in a unique manner, making this brand one to watch for.

The writer is a lawyer who pens lifestyle articles for various publications and her blog www.nooranandchawla.com. She can be reached on nooranand@gmail.com.

Continue Reading

Lifestyle & Entertainment

THE GREAT INDIAN SALAD FEST

We bring to you some binge worthy, guilt free salads that are bound to cheer you up, especially amid the ongoing coronavirus crisis.

Published

on

With monsoon in its full bloom and the dreadful pandemic threatening to make a comeback with its third wave, our focus on health and nutrition has doubled. Fresh foods, greens, and a wholesome diet is important for building our immunity and at the same time giving us the energy and zing to cope with stressful work from home routines, which can make us lethargic after a heavy afternoon meal. The pandemic has also been a little heavy on families in terms of both cooking and eating because it is natural for a lot of us to consume more when families are around all the time. It is important to get hooked on to salads at this point for people of all ages to get those essential nutrients, micronutrients and minerals, which our regular meals cannot fulfill.

The need of the hour is to add in freshness and seasonal produce and that can help in many ways and o add in that dollop of health so as to keep other issues at bay. Immunity has been the operative word since 2020 and it is showing even more heavily today with so many Covid related diseases cropping up, making I even more important to focus on our health. Here are some binge worthy, guilt free salads that are bound to cheer you up!

Let’s start with a Mango and Grilled Tofu Salad, which is perfect for the summers. I’m not a tofu fan, so I prefer to replace that with either chicken or paneer.

MANGO AND GRILLED TOFU SALAD BY TARUN SIBAL OF TITLIE

Ingredients (salad) 

• Mangoes (ripe) – 2 

• Carrots – 2  

• Cucumbers -2 

• Mixed Greens – 1 bowl (arugula, mixed lettuce, mint, sweet basil, fresh coriander)

• Tofu – 80 gm (or chicken/paneer)

• Sweet Paprika powder – 1 tsp

• Fresh ground pepper – 1 tsp 

• Salt – ½ tsp 

Ingredients (dressing) 

• Zest of 1 lime

• 1/4 cup lime juice freshly squeezed (about 2 limes)

• Sweet Paprika Powder – 1 tsp 

• 1 tsp salt

• 2 tbsp olive oil 

• Freshly ground pepper

• 1 tsp honey 

Method

• Cut the mangoes into wedges

• Cut the tofu into wedges, season it with salt and paprika

• Grill the tofu on both sides with some olive oil on medium heat and keep it aside 

• Take out carrot and cucumber ribbons and add them to cold water so that they remain crisp 

• Add the mixed greens to the ice-cold water 

• Mix all the ingredients of the dressing in a jar and shake well  

• Pat dry the leaves, carrots and cucumber ribbons and mix together

• Add salt, pepper, paprika, mangoes and tofu. Add 3/4th dressing to the mix 

• Arrange it on a plate with tofu and mangoes on top 

• Garnish with mint leaves and paprika powder 

• Drizzle some of the remaining dressing on top

Voila! Your Gourmet Casual Summer Salad is good to go! The best part about this salad is that it is a full meal in itself. There are no cravings after a portion of this. It also rids me of the guilt about the ice cream and mango shake binges that are on at this time of the year!

KOSAMBARI BY CHEF AROKIYADOSS AT THE APPUMM HOUSE

Kosambari is a simple moong dal salad popular in Karnataka. It is a delicious, protein-packed lentil salad that is an integral part of Kannada cuisine. It is my go-to recipe during these sultry months because it is easy to make and uses the bare minimum ingredients. Chef Arokiyadoss adds, “It is also popular as kosumalli or hesarubele kosambari and is part of every festive meal or wedding feast. In Andhra, it goes by the name vadapappu. Vadapappu is nothing but soaked moong dal while Kosambari is a salad comprising of soaked moong dal, cucumber, fresh coconut and coriander leaves. Undoubtedly festive, yet simple. It is a light yet filling salad that can be eaten as a meal by itself along with a glass of neer mor or South Indian buttermilk. It is quick to make and very versatile in terms of the ingredients used. Basic moong dal salad recipe calls for soaked moong dal and cucumber. You can add grated carrot and raw mango too for variation. Soaking of moong dal makes it easily digestible and more nutritious. A perfect protein rich salad for those looking to lose weight!”

Ingredients

• 1 cup yellow moong dal

• 2 teaspoon lemon juice

• 2 tablespoon coriander leaves

• 2 medium cucumber

• 1 teaspoon ginger

• 4 medium carrot

• Salt as required

For Tempering

• 1 pinch asafoetida

• 2 teaspoon vegetable oil

• 4 green chilli

• 1 teaspoon mustard seeds

Method

• Soak the moong dal in water for 2 hours and then, drain the water and keep the dal aside. Now, peel and chop the cucumber, carrots, ginger and keep them in different bowls.

• In a large mixing bowl, add the chopped veggies along with salt, lemon juice, coriander leaves and soaked moong dal. Mix the ingredients well.

• Now, heat oil in a pan over medium flame and add mustard seeds in it and after a minute, add asafoetida and green chillies. Fry them for another minute and turn off the flame.

• Pour the tempering on the salad dish and wait for few minutes before you put it in the refrigerator. Serve chilled!

DUO OF MELON SALAD RECIPE BY CHEF PAWAN BISHT AT THE ONE8 COMMUNE

This is my ultimate favourite, since the melon salad recipe is the simple, delicious, and healthy with a burst of flavours.

Ingredients

• 1 cup scooped watermelon

• 1 cup scooped cantaloupe melon (I use musk melon)

• 2 cups washed and dried aragula (rocket) leaves

• 4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

• 2 tablespoons organic honey

• 2 tablespoons olive oil

• 1 cup balsamic vinegar

• 4 tablespoons of roasted pumpkin seeds

• Salt to taste

• Pepper to taste

Method

• Take a bowl and blend olive oil, honey, lemon juice, salt and pepper thoroughly.

• Add balsamic vinegar to it and put it on a low flame.

• Reduce the mixture till it comes to a glaze consistency.

• Scoop watermelon and cantaloupe melon, keep in the fridge to chill.

• Meanwhile, in a mixing bowl, add the balsamic glaze and the aragula.

WATERMELON-E-FETA SALAD RECIPE BY CHEF SAHIL SINGH

Even though this recipe needs a slightly elaborate preparation with the different kinds of lettuce and the feta, it is totally worth it. I of course substitute a few ingredients with what is available at the moment, but it turns out best this way. Of course, I do not worry about not finding one variety of lettuce. I use a little more of the ones I have or add spinach or rocket leaves.

Ingredients

• Romaine lettuce – 50 gm                          

• Lolorosso lettuce – 50 gm

• Iceberg lettuce – 50 gm

• Balsamic (Reduction) – 10 gm

• Watermelon cubed

• Greek feta – 15 gm

• Salt as per taste

• Pepper  

• Walnuts – around 15 gm (I add some raisins and roasted almonds, too)

Method:

• Cut the watermelon into cubes and roughly pluck the lettuce.

• Chill watermelon cubes for a few hours. 

• Once ready, marinate the watermelon and lettuce in balsamic dressing separately

• Add salt and pepper.

• Take a fresh bowl and spread lettuce first. Add watermelon on top of salad and sprinkle

The Greek feta cheese and walnut/nuts.

• Serve immediately.

These are simple recipes using seasonal fruits, vegetables and ingredients that are mostly available in our kitchen or the fridge. Eating five portions of fruit each day, greens for the vitamins and to fulfill all the protein requirements per day is all very tedious, and most of us fail at getting the right nutrition, which is the need of the hour. Salads can be boring but with some of these brilliant recipes, it can be a fabulous add on to our meals, as well as something that can be snacked on for those mid-day and evening hunger pangs. Keep safe, keep healthy and keep eating the right stuff this summer!

Continue Reading

Lifestyle & Entertainment

THE INCREDIBLE JOURNEY OF HARSHVARDHAN RANE

Uday Pratap Singh

Published

on

Actor Harshvardhan Rane has garnered a huge fan base over the years, thanks to his performances in films like Taish and Sanam Teri Kasam. Besides his acting ventures, Rane is also loved for being an adventure enthusiast. While he loves riding motorbikes, he also owns an off-roader, which he’s named Jango. Interestingly, he’s owned the 4×4 for eight years and now he’s become the face of the brand! 

His friends and fans call him ‘the mountain boy’ and they are well aware that Harshvardhan holds Jango very close to his heart. He’s done various adventure trails with it and he’s spent days eating, sleeping and literally staying in it at deserted locations. Now, becoming a face for the brand Mahindra is like life coming a full circle for him.

Continue Reading

Trending