Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Can fish oils help fight prostate cancer? Omega-3 may 'stop the growth of harmful cells'

Fish oils could help in the battle against prostate cancer, new research suggests.
Scientists have discovered a mechanism by which omega-3 fatty acids prevent the growth and spread of prostate cancer cells.
However the findings are at odds with a 2013 study asserting that omega-3s increase the risk of prostate cancer.
Despite this, the new research 'points the way to more effective anti-cancer drugs,' the researchers claim

Scientists have long known that omega-3s reduce inflammation and have anti-diabetic effects, and some recently discovered how this happens.
'But we're the first to show that they work this way in cancer,' said Kathryn Meier, a professor of pharmacy at Washington State University.

'The attention has mostly been on inflammation and diabetes but there has always been an interest in cancer, and we were the first to show this mechanism in any cancer cell at all.
 And we're using prostate cancer, which is the most controversial subject in omega-3s.'
A 2013 study in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute found that men with higher levels of omega-3 fatty acids in their blood had a greater risk of developing prostate cancer.
It was not clear if the fatty acids came from food - certain fish, seeds and nuts are high in omega 3s - or supplements like fish oil.

Working with prostate cell cultures, Professor Meier and two students found the fatty acids bind to a receptor called FFA4, for 'free fatty acid receptor 4.'
Rather than stimulating cancer cells, the receptor acts as a signal to prevent growth factors, suppressing proliferation of the cancer cells.
'This kind of knowledge could lead us to better treat or prevent cancer because now we know how it works,' Professor Meier said.

The study also found that a drug mimicking the action of omega 3s can work as well or better than fatty acids in suppressing the cancer cells.
The study appears in the Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics.
Professor Meier said it is still unclear if the effect can be obtained by taking dietary supplements like fish oil.

Some people don't tolerate fish oil very well, she said.
Moreover, the effect of fish oil could fade as it is digested, while data from this study suggest that an omega-3 drug needs to be in a cancer cell all the time to have an effect.
'It's very difficult in dietary studies to tell how much to take or what form to take,' Professor Meier said. 'Should you be eating fish?

'Should you be taking pills? But now we have a potential drug.
'Once you have a drug you can test very precisely whether it works or not in a certain disease and you would know exactly how much to give people.' 

The wine that won't give you a hangover! Scientists discover that altering DNA of the yeast within the drink can reduce adverse effects

Wine-lovers may soon be able to indulge in their favourite drink without any adverse effects the next morning.
Scientists claim they have discovered the key to making hangover-free wine, by altering the DNA of yeast in the drink.

As well as reducing toxic by-products that cause the dreaded headaches and nausea of a hangover, the breakthrough could boost wine's health benefits, the researchers said.
Professor Yong-Su Jin and his team at Illinois University used the enzyme nuclease as a 'genome knife' to snip DNA and precisely modify yeast strains used in fermentation.
They found that winemakers can clone the enzyme to enhance malolactic fermentation – a secondary process that makes wine smooth.

Improper malolactic fermentation generates the toxic byproducts thought to cause hangover symptoms, Professor Jin said.

The research, published in the journal Applied and Environmental Microbiology, also offers hope of improving the nutrition of foods made using fermentation, including beer, bread and pickles.

'Wine, for instance, contains the healthful component resveratrol,' the professor said.
'With engineered yeast, we could increase the amount of resveratrol in a variety of wine by ten times or more. But we could also … introduce bioactive compounds from other foods, such as ginseng.'

He stressed the genome knife's importance as a tool that allows genetic engineers to make extremely precise mutations.
'Scientists need to create designed mutations to determine the function of specific genes,' he said. 'Say we have a yeast that produces a wine with great flavour and we want to know why.
'We delete one gene, then another, until the distinctive flavour is gone, and we know we have isolated the gene responsible for that characteristic.'

He said the new technology also makes genetically modified organisms less objectionable.
'In the past, scientists have had to use antibiotic markers to indicate the spot of genetic alteration in an organism, and many persons objected to their use in foods because of the danger of developing antibiotic resistance,' he said.

'With the genome knife, we can cut the genome very precisely and efficiently so we do not have to use antibiotic markers to confirm a genetic event.'

'Friday's eclipse may signal the end of the world': Pastor warns that astronomical event could herald the day of judgement

Friday’s solar eclipse across Europe could signal darker times and the ‘day of judgement,’ a pastor has warned.

The timing of the eclipse, which comes a few weeks before a lunar eclipse, is apparently significant.

Coinciding also with the spring equinox, the rare 'once in 100,000-year' event could indicate that trouble is brewing in Europe, according to the pastor.
The claim was made by pastor Mark Blitz for the Christian website Root Source in an interview with WorldNetDaily (WND).

The partial solar eclipse on Friday 20 March is itself fairly rare, as the last solar eclipse in Europe occurred back in 1999.

However, a few weeks later on 4 April, the third of four ‘blood moon’ lunar eclipses will take place, while it is also the first day of spring and the first day of the Jewish religious calendar.

A lunar eclipse occurs when the moon passes in the shadow of Earth, and appears red due to light refracting differently and hitting its surface.


A lunar eclipse occurs when the moon passes in the shadow of Earth.

This is an area known as the umbra, where light from the Sun is blocked by our planet.

The light refracts differently in the atmosphere and, as it hits the moon, it makes it appear red.

This gives rise to its ‘blood red’ appearance during a total eclipse, when the entire moon is in shadow.

If it skirts the shadow, known as a partial or penumbral eclipse, the effect is less dramatic.

‘An event of this magnitude at the very beginning of the religious new year demands attention,’ Mr Blitz told WND.

‘As the Bible tells us, there will be signs in the heavens on the feast days, and this is a very significant sign on a critical day.

‘It’s the same day that there was the grand-opening ceremony of the tabernacle of Moses, with fire from heaven lighting the altar. Historically, this is a day of judgment.’

He also said it was ‘likely a message from God to the entire world.’

There will also be a partial solar eclipse on 13 September 2015, followed by the last of the four blood moons - known as a tetrad - on 28 September. The previous two occurred on 15 April and 8 October 2014.

The so-called ‘blood moon prophecy’ is apparently a sign that the world is coming to an end.

Mr Blitz said the last time there were four blood moons in a row, in 1967, Israel captured Jerusalem.

Experts have warned, however, that no one should attempt to look directly at the sun without specialised solar glasses.

Others have also said that the two-hour event could pose problems for solar power stations across Europe.

About three per cent of the total European energy consumption comes from solar power, and scientists have warned that the risk of blackouts is greater than ever.

The effects of a momentary dip in output has not been studied before, leading to the suggestion there could be a 'cascade of electricity blackouts' as power grids struggle to cope.

Meanwhile, scientists will also be using the event to study one of the sun's biggest mysteries.

A team based in Svalbard, north of Norway, will be hoping to use the event to find out why the sun's corona - its outer atmosphere - is hotter than its surface.

The plasma of the sun is only visible during a total eclipse, so the scientists will use this unique opportunity to try and solve the puzzling phenomena.

And in an amazing coincidence, the eclipse will occur over the North Pole on the same day the sun comes into view after six months of polar night - an event which happens only once every 500,000 years.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Is this Jesus' childhood home? Ancient text points to First Century structure where the Messiah may have lived

Hewn into a hillside, this is the humble stone and mortar house where a scholar believes Jesus was raised. It has been dated to the early 1st century by a British archaeologist who says an ancient text points to the building as being the home in Nazareth where Mary and Joseph brought up the son of God. Professor Ken Dark says De Locis Sanctis, written in 670 by Irish monk Adomnan, described the house as located between two tombs and below a church.
A British archaeologist has identified what he believes could have been the house (exterior pictured) where Jesus was raised. Dr Ken Dark said that the humble first century home in Nazareth, Northern Israel, could have been where Mary and Joseph brought up the son of God

In the first century, two tombs were built beside what is believed to be Jesus' home. The forecourt of the tomb seen here passes through the abandoned home. Dr Ken Dark describes it as having been cut out of a limestone hillside and having a series of rooms and a stairway

The text was based on a pilgrimage to Nazareth made by the Frankish bishop Arculf and tells of a church ‘where once there was the house in which the Lord was nourished in his infancy’.

 In the Byzantine era, and again in the 12th century at the time of the Crusades, the ruins of the building were incorporated into churches – suggesting it was of great significance and needed to be protected, the Reading University archaeologist argues.
The house was cut into a limestone hillside and has a series of rooms and a stairway. One of the original doorways has survived, as has part of the original chalk floor.

The key piece of evidence linking the site to Jesus is pilgrim text called 'De Locus Sanctis' written in 670 AD by abbot Adomnàn of Iona (pictured) It was supposedly based on a pilgrimage made to Nazareth and talks about a church 'where once there was the house in which the Lord was nourished in his infancy'

The Sisters of Nazareth Convent matches this because there is evidence of a large Byzantine church with a spring and two tombs in its crypt, Dr Dark writes.The house he believes was Jesus' boyhood home stands in between the two tombs which also matches with Adomnàn's account

Writing in the journal Biblical Archaeological Review, Dr Dark says that while he has no proof, there is ‘no good reason’ to believe it was not Jesus’s home.

He has been researching the ruins, in what is now northern Israel, since 2006.
The house was first identified as significant in the 1880s after the chance discovery of by nuns an ancient cistern. An excavation was ordered.
Jesuit priest Henri Senes carried out more work in 1936.
Since 2006, Dr Dark’s team has discovered broken cooking pots, a spindle whorl and limestone artefacts.
The limestone items suggest a Jewish family lived there as Jews believed that limestone could not be impure – and Mary and Joseph were living in Nazareth when the angel Gabriel revealed that Mary would give birth to the son of God, a baby to be named Jesus.


The house is thought to be located beneath the Sisters of Nazareth Convent which is across the road from Church of Annunciation in Nazareth.
The key piece of evidence linking the site to Jesus is pilgrim text called 'De Locus Sanctis' written in 670 AD by abbot Adomnàn of Iona.
It was supposedly based on a pilgrimage made to Nazareth made by the Frankish bishop Arculf and talks about a church 'where once there was the house in which the Lord was nourished in his infancy.'
He writes: 'The other stood nearby and was built near a vault that also contained a spring and the remains of two tombs.
'Between these two tombs was the house in which Jesus was raised. From this is derived the more recent name for the church that Adomnàn described'.
The Sisters of Nazareth Convent matches this because there is evidence of a large Byzantine church with a spring and two tombs in its crypt, Dr Dark writes.
Dr Dark, a specialist in first century and Christian archaeology, argues that the house he believes was Jesus’s boyhood home matches Adomnan’s account.
It is located beneath the Sisters of Nazareth Convent, which is across the road from Church of Annunciation in Nazareth.


Artefacts at the site included broken cooking pots, a spindle whorl and limestone artifacts.
The limestone items suggest a Jewish family lived there as Jews believed that limestone could not be impure.
The house has been cut out of a limestone hillside and having a series of rooms and a stairway. One of the original doorways has survived as has part of the original chalk floor.
The house is located beneath the Sisters of Nazareth Convent which is across the road from Church of Annunciation in Nazareth.

Subsequent generations after the first century took great care to look after the site. The house was decorated with mosaics in the Byzantine period, suggesting that they were of special importance.
The Adomnan text describes two churches in Nazareth, one of which was the Church of Annunciation.
Dr Dark writes: ‘The other stood nearby and was built near a vault that also contained a spring and the remains of two tombs.’

The Sisters of Nazareth Convent matches this because there is evidence of a large Byzantine church with a spring and two tombs in its crypt, he says.
Dr Dark writes: ‘Great efforts had been made to encompass the remains of this building. Both the tombs and the house were decorated with mosaics in the Byzantine period, suggesting that they were of special importance, and possibly venerated.
‘Was this the house where Jesus grew up? It is impossible to say on archaeological grounds.
'On the other hand, there is no good archaeological reason why such an identification should be discounted.’

In 2009 archaeologists from the Israel Antiquities Authority found another 1st century home nearby they believed had been occupied by a Jewish family. However they were able to say only that Jesus may have lived near the site.

Along with the home, a number of water sources have also been found at Nazareth. They would have been accessed with Jesus was alive. This image shows a famous source known today as 'Mary's Spring'

Monday, March 2, 2015

The Only 7 Things You Can Control in Life

In my experience, life can be pretty complicated. Although most of us have plenty to manage in our day-to-day lives—jobs, relationships, family, exercise, sleep, you name it—there are really only a few things we truly have control over. I changed my life by identifying these variables and learning how to master them. And I think you can too.

Happiness and success (however you define either one) have a lot to do with each other. In fact, greater happiness has been found to lead to greater success. I think both can be achieved with some simple and straightforward habit hacking, or making small tweaks to your routine which, little by little, add up to major changes in how you’re living your life.
We make millions of little decisions all the time, and the result of each one is either net positive, net negative, or neutral. The more net positive decisions we can make (and the fewer net negative ones), the better. Net positive decisions may require some effort: Brushing your teeth before bed, eating healthy meals, and regularly going to the gym are a few examples of actions that help you feel good and bring you one step closer to your goals despite the effort they entail. Net negative decisions—filling up on food that doesn’t make you feel good, skipping the nightly teeth-brushing, letting that downer friend cramp your style, or forgoing the gym—make it difficult to reach your goals because your decisions don't make you feel good, empowered, or confident. They take more out of you than they give, interfering with your energy levels, sapping your motivation, and clouding your focus. 
While the healthier choice may seem harder, it pays off bigger. And you’ll be surprised by just how easy these choices can be once you make the effort. By learning how to master the seven things that are within our control, you will start to make more net positive decisions, fewer net negative ones, and find that empowering, positive behaviors become second nature. So let go of all the stuff you can't control and start using your time to master what you can control. Before you know it, you'll be living your best life ever!

     How to Master Life in 7 Easy Steps

1. Inhale, exhale, repeat. 
Most people don't even think about their breathing (I myself used to talk for many seconds at a time and forget to breathe!). Breathing is obviously important, but so is the ability to focus on it. Can you feel your chest expand when you inhale, and get softer when you exhale? Where do you feel the rise and fall most? Breathing is the ultimate hack to relax and slow racing thoughts. As soon as you experience something unpleasant, just take a few deep breaths and focus not on how horrible the situation was, but on your breathing. When you focus on your breath, you can count “one” as you inhale, “two” as you exhale. When you get to 10, start over. I bet you'll start to feel better and more grounded immediately.

2. Chat yourself up. 
We all have a voice in our heads. That voice can often be critical and get in the way of our happiness and success. Try to count the times you engage in negative self-talk each day. It may surprise you how often you criticize yourself. If you can learn to recognize this Debbie Downer of an inner voice and replace it with engouraging statements, your attitude will start to change. Try talking to yourself with compassion. For example, instead of telling yourself you’re not good enough, remind yourself that you are worthy of love and attention, or that it’s okay to make mistakes—we all do!

3. Say thanks. 
If you can practice being grateful on a daily basis, your happiness and productivity will increase . Cultivating gratitude trains us to focus on hope, to remain inspired, and to be optimistic, lending us the courage and resilience to persevere in the face of setbacks (on top of giving us a mood boost that keeps us coasting).

4. Become fluent in body language.
According to neuroscientist Amy Cuddy, you can demonstrate power and confidence simply by changing the way you hold your body. For example, adopting a powerful stance—arms on your hips and feet planted wide, causing you to take up more space—increases testosterone and decreases the stress hormone cortisol. The result? This "power posing" will make you feel more confident. Think about this before you meet with a potential client, go to a job interview, or even just before you leave the house.

5. Pursue (physical and mental) fitness.
I don’t know about you, but I come up with my best ideas while I'm on the elliptical. Exercising is a chance to just listen to my music and think about nothing. It's glorious. You don't have to go to the gym, but we all ought to take 20 minutes out of our days to get up and move. Motion helps free your mind and body to better tap into your creative potential. Walking has literally been found to increase creativity . Getting some movement in will help creativity and also focus.

Giving your brain a workout is as easy as it is important for you to do. Whether you play Sudoku or do crossword puzzles, or subscribe to the app Lumosity, your brain will feel the difference. Folks who don’t want to shell out the cash can get a similar benefit from meditation. Just 20 to 30 minutes has been shown to increase focus, reduce stress and anxiety, and even dial down physical pain  .

6. Eat smart. 
Even though it might taste great, junk food is a net negative. It makes your brain and body slow and sad. Consuming too much sugar has been linked to all kinds of medical conditions (including metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular disease), not to mentionmood swings and crashes that kill productivity. Plus, processed foods have been proven to exacerbate, if not cause, chronic diseases like diabetes, obesity, and even breast cancer  . Simple fixes like keeping a bag of carrots or a bowl of fruit handy help us pick up the healthier choice when we're depleted and hungry and reaching for the closest snack. Easy-to-whip-up, convenient-to-carry portablesnacks can be delicious and nutritious.

7. Get adequate shuteye. 
Sleep is critical for focus, concentration, job and academic performance, keeping your appetite under control, and a host of other positive health outcomes. In order to hack sleep, you have to set a routine. I'm asleep by 9 pm and I wake up to watch the sun rise. Watching the sun rise is beautiful and it's a net positive that I’m grateful for. If your brain can't calm down while you're trying to fall asleep, you can tell yourself, “I'm proud of the work I accomplished today, I'm going to let my brain and body rest now." Or try other trusted get-to-sleep-ASAP methods, including cutting back on alcohol (since people who booze more sleep less.

     Habit Hacking: The Warm-Up

Use the three quick tips below to get your mind and spirit ready to hack your habits and live your best life ever!
1. Visualize it.
Whatever it is you most want to be doing, you must be able to see yourself doing it. For most of us, the work we do while procrastinating is probably the work we should be doing for the rest of our lives. Practice visualizing this concept with your eyes closed for a few seconds. Where are you working? What's the room like? What's the temperature like? How's the lighting? How do you feel? Are you drinking a cup of coffee or a glass of water? What time of the day is it? The more senses you involve the better. Keep imagining this for yourself in order to increase the likelihood of these visions becoming reality.

2. Believe in it. 
You have to believe that you already have everything you need to be successful. Reember: You don't need money to try out an idea. There are plenty of free and low-cost ways to get started with all kinds of projects—from using social media to smartphone apps to making use of fundraising sites. And when it comes to having the courage and can-do spirit to get going, well, that's something you already have in spades.

3. Talk it up. 
Talk about what you do everywhere you go. You won't believe the people you stumble upon who are willing to help. Whatever pain you're healing or problem you're solving or project you’re launching, share your knowledge and experiences with everyone who can benefit from them. When you help as many people as you can, those people will connect you to all kinds of resources—everything you need to get started. Just let it happen, and smile as often as possible.

Take a look at these business you probably had no idea were started by Christians

Brands like Not of This World are popular among the Christian subculture, and it’s hard to miss religious companies with places like Family Christian Stores and Lifeway dotting shopping malls. But did you know some stalwarts of American culture are in fact founded by Christians and continue to operate on those principles to this day? Here, we look at seven corporations that still think to put Jesus first.

#7 Interstate Batteries 

With a corporate chaplain and support staff, Interstate Batteries is known to help employees live a daily work life with Bible study and prayer opportunities. In addition to these daily realities, Interstate partners with Angel Tree to provide gifts to needy families at Christmastime, has a “volunteer month” wherein an employee can use company time for a full day to do charity work, and partners with World Vision for global development opportunities. In supporting specific organizations, the company even has a page on their website dedicated to God’s love. 

#6 Tyson Foods 

One of the largest manufacturing companies in the world, Tyson is the #1 producer of meat in the United States. Not to be distracted by the company’s runaway success in the second half of the twentieth century, the Tyson family – founders of the company and still serving as executives and board members – holds their faith of chief importance. CEO John Tyson re-instituted a chaplain program originally started by his grandfather that provides 120 men of the cloth to workers in Tyson offices and factories. This will for the good of others is part of what spurred Tyson to start their kNOw Hunger campaign in concert with donating literally tons of food every year to America’s poor.

#5 The Anschutz Corporation 

You may have never heard of The Anschutz Corporation, but you’ve no doubt heard about their properties: Regal movie theatres, soccer’s Los Angeles Galaxy, the Staples Center sports and event arena and such publications as The Weekly Standard. Through these ventures, Philip Anschutz – owner of the private holding company corporation – has supported Christianity and culture over and over again. With The Foundation for a Better Life, Anschutz supports principled living, and with Walden Media has co-produced as well as distributed The Chronicles of Narnia films and Amazing Grace.

#4 Tom’s of Maine 

A darling of the organic movement, Tom’s of Maine has been providing all-natural hygiene and beauty products for over forty years. Founder Tom Chappell attended Harvard Divinity School and earned his Masters in Theology degree. Planning to enter the ministry and give up his business, he was convinced by a professor to view his business as a ministry opportunity. Ever since, Tom’s of Maine has provided grants to education, arts and religions institutions out of their corporate profits, as well as promoted stewardship alongside employee well-being. So important were these values that Chappell – who serves in the Episcopal Church still – insisted that Tom’s of Maine culture and guiding principles be left unchanged when Colgate-Palmolive bought a controlling stake in the company. Tom’s remains an independently operated organization so it can continue to do business on these principles.

#3 Alaska Airlines 

The Seattle-based airline has been known for its expansion and responsible budgeting that kept it out of bankruptcy even after the disastrous events of September 11. Their fairness to employees and customers is almost unparalleled – and it’s all built on Christian principles. In fact, up until February of 2012, any in-flight meal from Alaska Airlines came with a small paper card. It wasn’t anything fancy, but against the breathtaking landscape of their home region in the Pacific Northwest would be printed a verse from the book of Psalms. If a user flipped it over, a prayer of thanks would be available to say before the meal. Though the prayer cards were retired, CEO Bill Ayer emphasized: “This difficult decision was not made lightly […] It’s important that everyone know this decision does not change our core values.”

#2 Forever 21 

Christianity and trendy club fashion aren’t an immediate pairing we think of. But budget-conscious retailer Forever 21 has been doing it since 1984. Founders Do Won and Jin Sook Chang immigrated from Korea in the early 80s, and found much local support in their church and Jesus Himself. As a privately held company, profits still go to the Changs – who in turn have donated millions of dollars to their church and Christian efforts the world over. Lest a weary shopper miss the opportunity, every retail bag is printed with the most famous and succinct explication of the Gospel; it simply reads “John 3:16.”


It’s hard not to love a Double Double with fries, animal style. The fast food favorite of California and Arizona has long been a privately held staple that spurns the opportunity to franchise or take on investors in the name of quality and customer service. But what few know about the burger flippers and cashiers at In-N-Out is that they aren’t like their counterparts at McDonald’s or Wendy’s; In-N-Out, it seems, is committed to paying better than minimum wage in all its operating districts as well as providing benefits to part-time workers. What prompts all this? The Snyder family, founders and still owners of In-N-Out Burger, are deeply Christian – and they show it with Bible verse citations on their packaging.