610,000 people in the US die of heart disease per year – 1 in every 4 deaths. Whilst some of these are inherent problems, many develop later in life due to unhealthy lifestyle choices. If you want to protect this vital organ, here are just a few of the changes you can make to keep your heart happy.
A hearty meal
Heart problems are generally the result of too much fat, salt and sugar in our diets. Some foods are obvious offenders such as fried meats and cakes. Others include soda, margarine and powdered coffee creams. Eating more organic foods is often the best way to look after your heart, using more natural sugars from fruit and more natural salts from meats. Trading in fries more often for boiled potatoes, pasta and rice can also help.
Exercise helps to strengthen heart muscles, keep blood pressure low and keep blood flow high. This includes both aerobic and anaerobic exercises. Weight lifting has been viewed as bad for your heart in the past, but recent studies have shown that a bit of weight lifting can actually be very good for this organ as it builds those heart muscles up. The general rule of thumb is to stay active and not lead a sedentary lifestyle that will only cause your heart to become lazy.
Stress is alsobad for our hearts. The overproduction of adrenalin and cortisol and increased white blood cell production creates an imbalance in our hearts that causes heart attacks. Taking steps to limit stress isn’t always easy and may require counselling. If work is to blame, consider whether the paycheque is worth the years that could be deducted from your life.
Packing in smoking
Smokers are twice as likely to have a heart attack than those that have never smoked. This is due to a number of reasons. It firstly damages the lining of the arteries by leading to a build-up of fat. Carbon monoxide in cigarettes meanwhile reduces the amount of oxygen in our blood, so that the heart has to beat harder. Nicotine meanwhile increases blood pressure by pumping adrenalin into the heart and causing it to pump unnecessarily faster. All in all, it’s much better for your heart to quit.
Already have a heart problem?
For, those that have already been diagnosed with a heart problem, the risks are heightened. The previous rules need to be followed strictly. Technology meanwhile can help reduce the likeliness.Foremost’s Refurbished AEDsare useful to have as an emergency option. Apps to measure one’s heart rate are also worth downloading and making use of.
There are fortunately many surgery options out there nowadays that can help get rid of heart problems such as bypass operations and stents. For those cases where surgery isn’t an option, a health adviser can be useful for maintaining a healthy regime.
From more precise monitoring to enhanced results, fitness gadgets can make your exercise regimen more effective and more fun. Heart health is one of the main reasons that people exercise and there are quite a few gadgets available to help improve your cardiovascular health; here are a few of them:
1. Pedometers Walking is a form of moderate exercise that can greatly improve your heart health. It is easy and can be done by most people in most environments. In addition to strengthening your heart, a moderate walk can improve your circulation and build your lung capacity. Pedometers are useful tools for tracking how much you walk and can help you to stay motivated. Modern pedometers are very precise and can provide a reasonably accurate estimate of the number of steps you take.
2. Electronic Muscle Stimulators These devices such as the ones at shopcompex.com send an electrical pulse to a specific muscle, which causes it to contract as it would during exercise. The pulse is mild and safe. By creating the same effect as exercise, these devices can help you to tone your muscles and to improve oxygen consumption; both of these things are good for cardiovascular health. Electronic muscle stimulators are not a substitute for cardio exercise but they can help to enhance the benefits.
3. WiFi Scales Losing weight is an important part of improving your heart health. For effective weight loss, you will need tools to measure your progress. Having regular weigh-ins is a good way to keep yourself accountable; a reliable scale is therefore essential. Scale technology has come a long way since the old analog models of yesteryear. There are WiFi scales available that allow the information on the scale to be transmitted to a personal computer. This allows for more precise tracking of your weight loss efforts.
4. Music Players Motivation is arguably the most important element in achieving any fitness goal. Any tools that can provide or add to your motivation will be extremely helpful in improving your heart health. Music is an excellent motivational tool and today’s music players are compact, light and feature-rich; this makes them perfect for use while working out. Among the most helpful features on some models is the ability to set your music to stop playing when you stop moving; the idea behind this is that it provides that extra incentive to keep going.
5. Heart Rate Monitors The Centers for Disease Control recommends that you workout for at least 20 minutes three days per week at between 70 and 85 percent of your maximum heart rate. You should combine this with moderate exercise at 50 to 70 percent of your maximum heart rate three days a week. In order to achieve these heart rates and to stay within them for the recommended amount of time, you are going to need a monitoring device. Heart rate monitors have become widely available and are used by professional athletes as well as by regular people just trying to get fit. You can set the alarm to signal when your heart rate falls below the desired pace and ensure that your workout stays at the intensity you desire. Fitness and improved heart health are the two goals most people have when they start working out. Many fail to attain them. Gadgets cannot provide you with the willpower you will need to exercise consistently, but they can help to make your workouts more effective.
A huge Burmese python was caught by rangers in Everglades, Florida, before it could lay eggs containing the 59 super-predators inside her.
The image was taken in 2009 but the problem is a very pressing one in 2012. Nothing and no one is safe when these marauding foreign invaders emerge from the fetid swamp that has become their home.
Super- pythons like this one- are causing mayhem in the Everglades where they are decimating native species, numbers of raccoons, opossums, bobcats and other mammals.
With no natural predators scientists fear the pythons are disrupting the food chain and upset the Everglades’ delicate environmental balance in ways difficult to predict.
Many of them were originally pets that were turned loose by their owners when they got too big to manage.
Others are believed to be descendents of domestic pythons that escaped from pet shops during Hurricane Andrew in 1992.
A huge Burmese python was caught by rangers in Everglades, Florida, before it could lay eggs containing the 59 super-predators inside her
A recent study, published last month in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, found that sightings of medium-size mammals are down dramatically – as much as 99%, in some cases – in areas where pythons and other large, non-native constrictor snakes live wild.
Tens of thousands of Burmese pythons, which are native to Southeast Asia, are thought to inhabit the Everglades, where they thrive in the warm, humid climate.
The National Park Service says 1,825 Burmese pythons have been caught in and around Everglades National Park since 2000.
Among the largest captured was a 156-pound, 16.4-foot one caught last month.
In 2010, Florida banned private ownership of Burmese pythons. Earlier this month, U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar announced a federal ban on the import of Burmese pythons and three other snakes.
Burmese pythons can grow to be 26 feet long and more than 200 pounds.
Pythons are not venomous. Instead, they kill their prey by locking it in their jaws, which boast powerful, backward-facing teeth, then crushing it in their coils. They then swallow it whole.
Their success is due to their ability to gorge on huge meals – and then go without food for months.
After a big kill, the snake’s insides remodel themselves to cope with such a feast. Their heart grows in size to produce more blood for digestion, extra stomach acid is produced and the intestines rearrange themselves.
A research team from Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, suggests that women who take certain ulcer drugs have a small increased risk of hip fractures in later life, particularly if they smoke.
The study, published in the British Medical Journal, found a link between long-term use of proton pump inhibitors and bone fractures in smokers.
Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) are used to treat heartburn, reflux and ulcers.
The research tracked almost 80,000 nurses in the US aged between 30 and 55.
They were followed up in later life to see how many had developed hip fractures after the menopause.
A research team from Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, suggests that women who take certain ulcer drugs have a small increased risk of hip fractures in later life, particularly if they smoke
The researchers found that smokers or ex-smokers taking proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) had a 50% increased risk of hip fracture compared with women not taking the medication.
The experts wrote in the British Medical Journal: “Chronic use of PPIs is associated with increased risk of hip fracture, particularly among women with a history of smoking.”
Commenting on the study, Dr. John Stevenson, who sits on the medical advisory council of the British Menopause Society, said it had been suspected for some years that proton pump inhibitors increased the risk of hip fracture.
“This large study confirms that suspicion. However, the absolute risk is small, with the drugs causing an additional five hip fractures per 10,000 women per year.
“Women should not be put off using proton pump inhibitors if they are needed, but these results provide yet another reason not to smoke.”
The incredible pictures of an isolated Amazon tribe are the most detailed ever recorded of a previously uncontacted Indian tribe in the remote forests of Peru.
The pictures are taken in Manú National Park, south-eastern Peru, and show the daily life of a family from the Mashco-Piro tribe.
Campaign group Survival International has released images of the Mashco-Piro tribe, which lives near the Manú National Park.
The Mashco-Piro tribe is known to inhabit the park, but sightings of them have increased in recent months.
The tribe has had little if any peaceful contact with the outside world.
The Mashco-Piro is one of around just 100 known uncontacted tribes. They live a traditional life in the Peruvian forests and have little or no outside contact with the world.
Families within the tribes fashion tools from wood and other materials, including the teeth of animals.
In these pictures, the adults and children are wearing decorative loops around their wrists, knees and ankles – some of which can be used to carry tools.
The adult female is also wearing a form of skirt which is believed to be made from pulped tree bark fibres.
The danger of attempting to establish contact with tribes who choose to remain isolated has recently been confirmed after the death of an indigenous Matsigenka man.
Survival blames the change on gas and oil projects and illegal logging in the area, pushing the tribe into new lands.
The message that the Mashco-Piro tribe seems to be sending, however, is that they want to be left alone.
The Mashco-Piro is one of around just 100 known uncontacted tribes and its members live a traditional life in the Peruvian forests and have little or no outside contact with the world
“There’s been increasing conflict and violence against outsiders that are on their ancestral land,” Survival’s Peru campaigner Rebecca Spooner said.
That violence has included arrows being fired at tourists in passing boats, and a warning arrow – with no tip – being recently fired at a Manú park ranger.
Most recently, members of the tribe fired a lethal arrow at Nicolas “Shaco” Flores – a member of a different tribe who had been attempting to make formal contact with the Mashco-Piro for some two decades.
Nicolás “Shaco” Flores was shot in the heart by an arrow near the national park as he was leaving food and gifts for a small group of Mashco-Piro Indians – something he had been doing for the last 20 years.
An account of the attack by anthropologist Glenn Shepard underlines the fact that the tribe is fearful of forming ties with the world around them.
Glenn Shephard told Anthropology News: “Shaco’s death is a tragedy: he was kind, courageous and a knowledgeable man.
“He believed he was helping the Mashco-Piro. And yet in this tragic incident, the Mashco-Piro has once again expressed their adamant desire to be left alone.”
Clan members have also been blamed for a bow-and-arrow attack which left a forest ranger wounded in October.
One of the images was taken by a bird watcher in August. The other two were taken by Spanish archaeologist Diego Cortijo on November 16, six days before Flores was killed.
Diego Cortijo, a member of the Spanish Geographical Society, was visiting Nicolás “Shaco” Flores on an expedition in search of petroglyphs and said clan members appeared across the river, calling for him by name.
Nicolás “Shaco” Flores was able to communicate with the Mashco-Piro because he spoke two related dialects and had provided the clan with machetes and cooking pots.
The Mashco-Piro tribe is believed to number in the hundreds and lives in the park bordering Diamante, a community of around 200 people.
The clan that appeared along the river is believed to number around 60, including some 25 adults, according to Carlos Soria – a professor at Lima’s Catholic University.
Diego Cortijo said: “It seemed like they wanted to draw a bit of attention, which is a bit strange because I know that on other occasions they had attacked people.
“It seemed they didn’t want us to go near them, but I also know that the only thing that they wanted was machetes and cooking pots.”
It was at a respectful distance of 120 m that Diego Cortijo snapped pictures of the tribe using a telescope mounted on a camera, capturing the most detailed images ever taken of such “uncontacted” tribes, many of whom are detailed at a site of the same name.
Carlos Soria said: “The place where they are seen is one of heavy transit of river cargo and tourist passage, and so the potential for more violent encounters remains high.”
The Mashco-Piro are one of around 15 uncontacted tribes in Peru which together amount to an estimated 15,000 people living in jungles east of the Andes.
State authorities issued a directive in August barring boats from going ashore in the area.
But enforcing it has been difficult as there are few trained and willing local officials.
Rebecca Spooner suggested that the evident increase in violence could be abated by preserving the local tribes’ traditional lands.
“We’re asking the Peruvian government to do more to protect that land, which should be set aside for the uncontacted groups,” she said.
Researchers from the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine and Columbia University Medical Center say that drinking just a single can of diet fizzy drink every day can increase the risk of a heart attack or stroke.
The study, published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine, has suggested that just a couple of daily cans of the supposedly “healthier” carbonated drinks, such as lemonade or cola, can raise the risk of liver damage, as well as potentially causing diabetes and heart damage.
Researchers claim those who drink diet soft drinks are 43% more likely to have heart attacks, vascular disease or strokes than those who have none.
Previous analysis of soft drinks has shown that the soft drinks, which have a substantial amount of artificial sweeteners, can cause liver disease similar to that caused by chronic alcoholism.
“Diet” fizzy drinks are marketed as a healthy option in comparison to “full fat” alternatives as they have fewer calories.
Researchers claim those who drink diet soft drinks are 43 percent more likely to have heart attacks, vascular disease or strokes than those who have none
But their genuine health benefits remain unclear, with some research suggesting they trigger people’s appetites even more.
The U.S. research team studied the soft drink and diet soft drink consumption of 2,564 study participants over a 10-year period – along with their risk of stroke, heart attack and vascular death.
The researchers found those who drank diet soft drinks every day were 43% more likely to have suffered a “vascular” or blood vessel event than those who drank none, after allowing for pre-existing vascular conditions such as metabolic syndrome, diabetes and high blood pressure.
Dr. Hannah Gardener said: “Our results suggest a potential association between daily diet soft drink consumption and vascular outcomes.
“The mechanisms by which soft drinks may affect vascular events are unclear.”
She added, however, that the mechanisms by which soft drinks may affect “vascular events” are not clear, and that more research was needed into the subject before significant conclusions could be drawn about the health consequences of soft drink consumption.
Diet soft drinks often contain artificial sweeteners like aspartame, which has been linked to other health problems such as cancer.
The White House issued an angry denial following claims that First Lady Michelle Obama indulged in a $50,000 shopping spree at Agent Provocateur’s boutique in Madison Avenue in New York.
According to a report in the Daily Telegraph today, Agent Provocateur’s boutique in Madison Avenue was partially closed off for Michelle Obama.
Kristina Schake, director of communications for First Lady Michelle Obama said this morning: “This story is 100 per cent false.”
The Telegraph claimed: “Michelle Obama has risked the wrath of cash-strapped Americans by indulging in a $50,000 shopping spree at Agent Provocateur…
“Along with the Queen of Qatar, Sheikha Mozah, she closed off part of Madison Avenue to spend time in the luxury lingerie shop.”
The article also said that Michelle Obama’s alleged spree had sparked the 12% boost in sales recently released by the British label.
But while the chain’s profits are certainly on the rise, it was quick to point out that this is not thanks to Michelle Obama.
A spokesman for Agent Provocateur said: “Recent claims regarding Michelle Obama and purchases made at an Agent Provocateur boutique are incorrect.
“Agent Provocateur never discusses any of its clientele or their purchases.”
According to a report in the Daily Telegraph today, Agent Provocateur's boutique in Madison Avenue was partially closed off for Michelle Obama
Indeed, it goes without saying that Michelle Obama’s lingerie-purchasing habits are most likely not something she would be prepared to share with anyone but the President himself.
It seems Agent Provocateur is doing fine without her help though. In the last 43 weeks, the company reported trading has been up 12.5% on a like-for-like basis and 21.6% overall.
Over the Christmas period overall business also shot up more than 15%.
Agent Provocateur CEO Gary Hogarth told the Telegraph that the label had garnered several “unexpected famous names” in the U.S. as of late.
Beyonce Knowles and Christina Aguilera have been seen at its stores in recent months, presumably purchasing unmentionables which can run to as much as $1,990 for a single French lace nightie.
Michelle Obama has come under fire from critics of late, who have taken issue with her taste for expensive designer labels and lavish parties.
A new book by New York Times reporter Jodi Kantor, “The Obamas”, fuelled widespread criticism when it emerged that she had hosted a high-octane Alice in Wonderland Halloween party in 2009, a time when the country was in the midst of a recession.
The expensive wardrobe Michelle Obama packed for their $4 million Hawaii Christmas break, including a $2,000 dress and $1,000 skirt, also sparked a reaction.
One comment on the Naked DC site read: “She claims to be a champion of the poor and a fellow bargain shopper, but yet, here she is, sporting a dress that no unemployed American can afford.
“For someone who says she understands the troubles of the American people, who claims to shop at Target, she certainly fails to show it.”
Michelle Obama’s striking cobalt blue Barbara Tfank dress, worn for last week’s State of the Union address, is believed to be worth approximately $2,000.
While winning over the style set with the eye-catching look, some questioned whether her choice was appropriate, given that she was seated next to Jackie Bray, a single mother from North Carolina who put herself through community college to boost her career prospects after getting laid off from her job.
Agent Provocateur, founded by the son of fashion designer Vivienne Westwood, Joseph Corré, and his then-wife, Serena Rees, in 1994, was bought out by private equity firm 3i in 2007 for a reported $108.5 million.
With Sarah Shotton as creative director, the designs certainly are not for the faint-hearted. The current collection is inspired by her collection of vintage Playboy magazines.
The company’s expansion in the U.S. – where sales have outpaced the UK – is already underway.
According to Business Week, Agent Provocateur has annual sales of $40million, with a budgeted increase of nine per cent same-store sales this year in the U.S.
By summer, the label plans to have 11 retailers in the U.S. and is aiming to expand from 54 to 100 total stores worldwide in the next three years.
Researchers studying mice at the Stanford University School of Medicine in California have converted skin cells directly into cells which develop into the main components of the brain.
The experiment, which was reported in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, skipped the middle “stem cell” stage in the process.
The researchers said they were “thrilled” at the potential medical uses.
Far more tests are needed before the technique could be used on human skin.
Stem cells, which can become any other specialist type of cell from brain to bone, are thought to have huge promise in a range of treatments. Many trials are taking place, such as in stroke patients or specific forms of blindness.
One of the big questions for the field is where to get the cells from. There are ethical concerns around embryonic stem cells and patients would need to take immunosuppressant drugs as any stem cell tissue would not match their own.
An alternative method has been to take skin cells and reprogram them into “induced” stem cells. These could be made from a patient’s own cells and then turned into the cell type required, however, the process results in cancer-causing genes being activated.
The research group is looking at another option – converting a person’s own skin cells into specialist cells, without creating “induced” stem cells. It has already transformed skin cells directly into neurons.
This study created “neural precursor” cells, which can develop into three types of brain cell: neurons, astrocytes and oligodendrocytes.
These precursor cells have the advantage that, once created, they can be grown in a laboratory into very large numbers. This could be critical if the cells were to be used in any therapy.
Brain cells and skin cells contain the same genetic information, however, the genetic code is interpreted differently in each. This is controlled by “transcription factors”.
The researchers used a virus to infect skin cells with three transcription factors known to be at high levels in neural precursor cells.
After three weeks about one in 10 of the cells became neural precursor cells.
Lead researcher Prof. Marius Wernig said: “We are thrilled about the prospects for potential medical use of these cells.
“We’ve shown the cells can integrate into a mouse brain and produce a missing protein important for the conduction of electrical signal by the neurons.
“More work needs to be done to generate similar cells from human skin cells and assess their safety and efficacy.”
Dr. Deepak Srivastava, who has researched converting cells into heart muscle, said the study: “Opens the door to consider new ways to regenerate damaged neurons using cells surrounding the area of injury.”
Sundance Film Festival 2012 took place from Thursday, January 19 to Sunday, January 29 in Park City, Utah.
The 28th edition of the festival presented about 118 independent films from 30 countries, including 45 first-timers (24 in competition) and 91 world premieres. Featured in four different competition categories were 58 individual films.
Parker Posey was the host of the closing awards ceremony.
“Every year the Sundance Film Festival brings to light exciting new direction and fresh voices in independent film, and this year is no different. While these awards further distinguish those that have had the most impact on audiences and our jury, the level of talent showcased across the board at the Festival was really impressive, and all are to be congratulated and thanked for sharing their work with us,” said John Cooper, Sundance Film Festival director.
The film also received a prize for excellence in cinematography, US dramatic.
Beasts of the Southern Wild tells the story of two persons (a father and his daughter) who are trying to deal with the effects of global warming. Hushpuppy is 6 years old and lives in the vicinity of the Mississippi delta with her father. The film is directed Benh Zeitlin, 29, first-time filmmaker and features a cast of non-actors. Quvenzhane Wallis (Hushpuppy), 8, who was 6 when she started to shot the movie, is for Benh Zeitlin “the biggest person” he knows.
The movie is described by Damon Wise (The Guardian) as “the first significant eco-threat movie to be seen through the eyes of the generation that has inherited global warming.”
“I hope with this movie there is a flag that goes up to allow directors to explore the world,” said Benh Zeitlin.
Beasts of the Southern Wild won Grand jury prize for drama at the Sundance Film Festival 2012.
The Surrogate won drama audience award and best ensemble at Sundance Film Festival 2012.
The film is based on the autobiographical writings of Mark O’Brien, journalist and poet and presents a man, 38, half paralyzed from poliomyelitis (John Hawkes) who wants to have a relation with his therapist (Oscar-winning Helen Hunt).
John Hawkes has health problems because his spine’s curvature was affected. He said he needed a help of a chiropractor to diminish the damages he caused to his back.
“I’ve been doing yoga for like 25 years, but my spine doesn’t have enough movement in one direction and the opposite direction has way too much movement. (My chiropractor) doesn’t know how to fix it other than I might wear a brace for a while,” he said.
Fox Searchlight bought Beasts of the Southern Wild and The Surrogate and the films are expected to be launched in the US theaters this year.
The House I Live In documentary won Grand jury prize at Sundance Film Festival 2012.
The documentary exposes the failure of US war against drugs. Film director, Eugene Jarecki, said the authorities’ effort to stop the drug trade was “tragically immoral and so heartbreakingly wrong and misguided“. That war was “a terrible scar on America,” said Eugene Jarecki, because of unfair drug penalties affecting minorities.
The Invisible War by Kirby Dick won documentary audience award.
Both documentaries are the mirrors of the “dark and grim” times, as characterized by Robert Redford, the founder of the Sundance Film Festival.
Sundance Film Festival 2012 Full List of Winners
Grand jury prize, documentary: The House I Live In
Grand jury prize, drama: Beasts of the Southern Wild
US directing award: The Queen of Versailles, Lauren Greenfield
US directing award: Middle of Nowhere, Ava Duvernay
Waldo Salt screenwriting award: Safety Not Guaranteed, Colin Trevorrow
Audience award, US documentary: The Invisible War
Audience award, US dramatic: The Surrogate
Special jury prizes, US documentary: Love Free or Die and Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry
US dramatic special jury prize for producing: Jonathan Schwartz and Andrea Sperling, Smashed and Nobody Walks
US dramatic special jury prize for Ensemble Acting: The Surrogate
Shorts audience award: The Debutante Hunters
Excellence in cinematography, US documentary: Chasing Ice
Excellence in cinematography, US dramatic: Beasts of the Southern Wild
US documentary editing award: Detropia
Best of next award: Sleepwalk With Me
Alfred P Sloan feature film prize: Robot and Frank and Valley of Saints
World cinema jury special prize, Documentary: Searching for Sugar Man
World cinema documentary editing: Indie Game: The Movie, Lisanne Pajot and James Swirsky
World cinema jury prize,documentary: The Law in These Parts, Ra’anan Alexandrowicz, director
World cinema dramatic special jury prize: Can, Rasit Celikezer, director
World cinema cinematography award, drama: David Raedeker, My Brother the Devil
World cinema cinematography award, documentary: Lars Skree, Putin’s Kiss
World cinema directing award, documentary: Emad Burnat and Guy Davidi, 5 Broken Cameras
Shorts audience award: The Debutante Hunters, Maria White, director
World cinema audience award: Searching for Sugar Man
Sundance Film Festival has begun in Salt Lake City in 1978 as an effort to attract independent filmmakers.
Christina Aguilera was left red faced after a very unusual malfunction happened while she was performing at the funeral of soul legend Etta James at the Bishop Noel Jones City of Refuge in Gardena, California.
Christina Aguilera, 31, seemingly over did it with the fake tan and the result was unpleasant streaks down her leg.
As the blonde singer belted out a rendition of Etta James’s most popular song, At Last, lines of fake tan could be seen streaked down the inside of her thigh, across her shin.
It appeared Christina Aguilera was aware that something was awry as she attempted to subtly wipe her legs with the sleeve of her jacket just before she began to sing.
Despite the mishap, Christina Aguilera gave a heartfelt performance at the funeral.
The singer wore an all black ensemble that comprised of a skirt and a blazer but showed a little bit too much cleavage for such a somber occasion.
Christina Aguilera seemingly over did it with the fake tan and the result was unpleasant streaks down her leg
With her trademark curves covered up, Christina Aguilera was moved by her own performance and admitted before the funeral that Etta James was one of her idols.
She wrote on Twitter: “One of the greatest moments of my life…Singing with my idol, the legendary Etta James. You will be forever missed.”
Christina Aguilera added an old black and white photograph of herself performing with Etta James.
Music legend Stevie Wonder also performed three songs and gave a harmonica solo.
The Reverend Al Sharpton , who met Etta James when he was an up-and-coming preacher, delivered the heartfelt eulogy.
Reverend Al Sharpton described Etta James as a trailblazer who helped break down the “colour curtain in America”.
The reverend went on to say she used music to “bridge a world that was separate”, referring to America’s turbulent racial divisions during the civil rights era.
Reverend al Sharpton said: “She was able to get us on the same rhythms and humming the same ballads and understanding each others’ melodies way before we could even use the same hotels.”
Etta James died on January 20 at the age of 73 after a long battle with leukemia and complications from dementia.
Hundreds of her friends, fans and family came out to honor Etta James at the Inglewood Cemetery Mortuary.
Since the singer’s death, her album sales have sky rocketed, with fans snapping up her various records.
For the week ending on January 22, Etta James’ albums sold a total 30,000 copies, marking a 378% increase over the previous week, when she moved just over 6,000 units.
Etta James won four Grammy Awards, including a lifetime achievement honor and she was inducted in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1993.
A new study review says that measuring blood pressure in both arms should be routine because the difference between left and right arm could indicate underlying health problems.
The Lancet research found that a large difference could mean an increased risk of vascular disease and death.
Although existing guidelines state that blood pressure should be measured in both arms, it is not often done.
A heart charity said it was too early to judge the findings.
The arm with the higher pressure can vary between individuals, but it is the difference between arms that counts, the study suggests.
Dr. Christopher Clark and colleagues, from the Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry at the University of Exeter, UK, reviewed 28 previous study papers looking at this area.
Most people in the study had an elevated blood pressure risk and about one-third had a normal level of risk.
A new study review says that measuring blood pressure in both arms should be routine because the difference between left and right arm could indicate underlying health problems
The study concluded that a difference in systolic blood pressure of 10 mm of mercury (mm Hg) between arms could identify patients at high risk of asymptomatic peripheral vascular disease.
A difference of 15mm Hg would also indicate an increased risk of cerebrovascular disease, a 70% increased risk of cardiovascular mortality and 60% increased risk of death from all causes, the authors said.
Peripheral vascular disease (PVD) is the narrowing and hardening of the arteries that supply blood to the legs and feet. There are often no symptoms.
The UK vascular check programme for over 40s which includes a test for hypertension, advises that blood pressure measurements be taken in both arms.
“But surveys have shown that the average GP doesn’t do it,” said Dr. Christopher Clark.
Early detection of PVD is important because these patients could then benefit from stopping smoking, lowering their blood pressure or being offered statin therapy.
Dr. Christopher Clark said the findings supported the need for blood pressure checks in both arms to be the norm.
Writing in The Lancet, Prof. Richard J. McManus, department of primary care health sciences at the University of Oxford and Prof. Jonathan Mant, from the department of public health and primary care at the University of Cambridge, said the review supports existing guidelines.
“Further research is needed to clarify whether substantial differences between arms should prompt aggressive management of cardiovascular risk factors.
“Ascertainment of differences should become part of routine care, as opposed to a guideline recommendation that is mostly ignored.”
Natasha Stewart, senior cardiac nurse at the British Heart Foundation, said measuring blood pressure on both arms to assess vascular disease is, theoretically, a quick and simple task.
“But it’s too early to say whether this idea could become part of standard healthcare practice and so we need more research to confirm the findings.”
Prof. Bryan Williams, from the Blood Pressure Association and the University of Leicester, said the study reinforced the message already in the guidelines from health watchdog NICE.
According to experts, relationships may be as vital to good health as a balanced diet and plenty of rest.
Scientists at UCLA’s school of medicine have found that negative social interactions can lead to increased inflammation, which may in turn cause a host of illnesses from cancer to heart disease and high blood pressure.
The study findings have been published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences journal.
The UCLA (University of California, Los Angeles) study gives solid grounding to the anecdotal evidence that being upbeat and positive – and surrounding one’s self with people with that do not represent competitive or toxic relationships – may be one way to avoid getting sick.
Taking a group of 122 healthy young people, the California-based scientists monitored stressful events and compared them to the body’s production of two inflammation-causing proteins.
Scientists at UCLA's school of medicine have found that negative social interactions can lead to increased inflammation, which may in turn cause a host of illnesses from cancer to heart disease and high blood pressure
Relying on the age-old method of capturing emotions – the diary – scientists recorded the group’s competitive and frictional moments and compared them with the chemicals found in swabs from the inner cheek.
The researchers found that those who had a negative few days preceding the swab had a higher proportion of the proteins responsible for conditions including high blood pressure, risk of heart disease, cancer and depression, according to Science News.
A similar peak in the pro-inflammatory proteins also occurred after participants were subjected to a stress-inducing numbers quiz and then asked to give a public speech.
The results – which may bring a whole new light to many a bad relationship – are thought to be grounded in evolutionary survival mechanisms.
While the modern link between stress and illness is well-documented, psychologist Nicholas Rohleder from Brandeis University in Waltham, Massachusetts, told Science News that inflammation fends off infections that may once have been the result of fight or flight encounters.
“Without the dangers humans once faced when it came to getting through each and every day, stress may lead to unchecked chronic inflammation,” Nicholas Rohleder said.
In a sneak peek from today’s episode of Kourtney & Kim Take New York , Kim Kardashian reveals that, in less than 72 days, her feelings for ex-husband Kris Humphries changed.
Kim Kardashian, 31, says she just “fell out of love”.
The clip shows Kim Kardashian having a breakdown on the finale of Kourtney & Kim Take New York, sobbing uncontrollably to older sister Kourtney.
“It’s hard for me. He’s a good heart, he’s a Christian – everything on paper I want in someone, but for some reason, my heart isn’t connecting,” Kim Kardashian tells her sister, before asking for family support.
The reality star sobs: “I feel awful that I made him move out here and change his whole life. I feel sad, I feel bad for the guy.”
After reflecting on her highly publicized, very expensive August 20 wedding, Kim Kardashian clearly can’t cope with the depth of her feelings.
“He fell in love with me and I fell in love with him and now all my feelings have changed,” she cries.
“I invited all these people to this huge wedding and flew everyone out, wasted everyone’s time and everyone’s money – everyone’s everything – and I feel bad!” Kim Kardashian sobs.
Kim Kardashian has a breakdown on the finale of Kourtney & Kim Take New York, sobbing uncontrollably to older sister Kourtney
“At 30 years old, I thought I’d be married with kids and I’m not. I failed at this,” she says. “People change their minds, people make mistakes.”
On last week’s episode of the E! show, Kim Kardashian had her second revelation that she needed to end her marriage after meeting with medium John Edwards.
She then sobbed to 32-year-old Kourtney: “I don’t want to be married anymore.”
During the session John Edwards asked if either of the sisters were divorced.
Kim Kardashian replied: “I’m divorced, I am. I mean I was married now but I was divorced before.”
The reality star was referring to her first marriage; she was wed to record producer Damon Thomas from 2000 to 2004.
John Edwards asked Kim Kardashian if she had learned from her divorce, claiming that is what her father wanted to know.
It was this line of questioning which upset Kim Kardashian and she confided in Kourtney after the session about how she felt in her relationship.
Kim Kardashian explained: “What was so crazy about that was when he was talking about the divorce stuff.
“I honestly feel like I can’t do this anymore with Kris. I feel like I got into this way too fast. You know I’m not happy.”
In a new interview, Todd Waterman, Kris Jenner’s former lover, has broken his silence and told all about their steamy affair that wrecked her marriage to Robert Kardashian.
Todd Waterman, an Emmy-nominated Hollywood animator, reveals explosive details of the couple’s relationship which began back in 1989, more than ten years into Kris Jenner’s marriage to lawyer Robert Kardashian.
He was a 23-year-old soccer player from local team LA Heat when he first set his eyes on Kris Jenner in a photo frame at a friend’s house in Beverly Hills.
Their subsequent “crazy and passionate” affair led to Kris Jenner’s divorce and paved the way to creating the worldwide Kardashian phenomenon.
“I was attracted to Kris,” says Todd Waterman, who decided to speak out after Kris Jenner wrote about him in her autobiography – using the false name “Ryan”.
Todd Waterman eventually got together with Kris Jenner on a night out with friends in Los Angeles and the pair had sex for the first time in a friend’s closet.
“I’m sure we danced and had a good time in the club,” says Todd Waterman. “We came back to her friend’s home in Beverly Hills. And our first time [we had sex] was in her friend’s closet. We found a little place in the house and consummated the relationship.”
“It was a magical night, surreal,” he adds.
“I think it was two people who were both open to experiencing something in their life at that time. It was fate, we invited it and we just ran with it and from that point on. We didn’t hold back.”
Photographs in Todd Waterman’s possession show the couple together during the affair – one features Kris Jenner in a colorful 1980’s style outfit with Todd in a suit and his arms around her.
Todd Waterman, an Emmy-nominated Hollywood animator, reveals explosive details of the couple's relationship which began back in 1989, more than ten years into Kris Jenner's marriage to lawyer Robert Kardashian
Another snap shows Todd Waterman and Kris Jenner sipping from beer bottles outside, with Kris wearing a bulky navy blue suit and white corsage, while other shots featuring a young Khloe Kardashian and Todd in his football playing days.
In her recent book, “All Things Kardashian”, Kris Jenner describes Todd Waterman living in a “tiny, dumpy apartment” in Studio City.
However, Kris Jenner leaves out the fact that she was the one who suggested they find a place, even choosing it herself, according to Todd Waterman.
Todd Waterman said: “She picked the apartment. We found it together.”
Elaborating on his memories of the affair, Todd Waterman, now 46, said: “The love swept us away. We made our own different reality. It was special, it was a little crazy, a little wild – we didn’t exercise caution or self-restraint. I think we were both very much in love.”
Speaking about the risks they would take, Todd Waterman described going over to play tennis at the Kardashians home near the beginning of the affair.
Todd Waterman said: “We did some crazy things. I remember playing tennis at her home with my friend the soccer player Justin Fashanu. And Robert was watching us play. We’re in the affair now and I’m sure he suspected at this point.
“He was trying to throw me off my game actually. He was just calling out foot fault while I served.”
In her book, Kris Jenner wrote how they had: “Wild crazy sex all the time. We had sex in cars, sex on the tennis court, sex in the pool house, sex in the garage when we got home, sex up and down the stairs, sex everywhere, all the time.”
Todd Waterman does not dispute her account, just adding: “We were pretty prolific. You’ve got a guy in his sexual prime and a woman entering hers.
“It wasn’t a problem. I can’t remember exactly but it’s possible we had sex in all those places. We were definitely adventurous. Outdoors and indoors.”
And when asked if they had sex in the Kardashians home, Todd Waterman said: “I don’t remember, I’m sure we did.”
But when asked if it went as far as the marital bed, he would only say: “I don’t remember but I’m usually not comfortable with those things.”
Todd Waterman remembers Kris Jenner paying for most things when they were together, as he decided to quit soccer due to it being badly paid.
He recalls: “She was generous. I didn’t have the money for the lifestyle she was leading. She was paying a lot, or it was Robert I guess.”
But once the affair was outed, Todd Waterman would go to parties as Kris Jenner’s boyfriend, meeting celebrities and enjoying the high life.
Todd Waterman said: “I just remember good times, barbecues, pool parties – it was fun. I would go to events as her boyfriend.
“I met celebrities at parties. Magic Johnson and the LA Lakers were at a pool party, I remember going from a George Michael concert to that house party and dancing in the back yard with George Michael there and Billy Idol.”
In the book, Kris Jenner describes how Robert Kardashian hired a private detective to catch her cheating with him eventually confronting them in a restaurant in Beverly Hills.
Todd Waterman remembers noticing the private detectives following and taking pictures of them – but had a different recollection of the confrontation.
He says: “When he hired the private investigators I would say that’s when it started going bad. It was the midway point of the affair.
“I remember he turned up at our apartment and he got into the complex. I said we’d call the police, let a little time go by and then I decided to drive Kris back to wherever she had to go.
“I was driving in an open Jeep at the time. As I pulled out of my garage, it was about 5:00 p.m. and a sunny day, he comes charging out with a golf club in his 450 SL convertible.
“He took a swing and whacked the back of my car. I said <<holy s***, Kris, can I pull over and confront him? What do you want to do?>> She screamed out <<no, no, keep driving he might have a gun in the car. I know he keeps a gun.>>
“So we’ve got this little high speed chase going on at rush hour and I’m in a Jeep and he’s trailing me and he’s trying to overtake us. I did a couple of spin out moves and he just kept going, luckily – maybe he got his composure again or something.”
Robert Kardashian filed for divorce and in the book Kris Jenner describes breaking the news to the children and how they “cried and cried”.
At the time Todd Waterman says he was scared for his life and thought Robert Kardashian might have him “wiped out” – as he was a powerful man.
Todd Waterman remembers OJ Simpson calling him and warning him to stay away from Kris – something the reality show matriarch also wrote about in her book.
Todd Waterman recalled: “OJ said he wanted to talk and he invited me to the house to talk. I said <<no thank you>. I said <<If you want to talk I have no problem meeting you in a public place but I have no desire to go to your home.>>”
Todd Waterman says he started to look over his shoulder and felt threatened: “I would walk into my place a different route, using the back door. I’d just been caught by this man with his wife, he was a high powered person, he’s got friends. It was scary.”
His fears turned out to be unfounded, but looking back, he regrets the hurt the affair caused.
Todd waterman says: “There’s several things I regret and it’s definitely the pain that it did cause Robert and the children specifically. I think it affected Kourtney the most. I know she was definitely affected and I always felt bad about that.”
“She was the oldest. Kimberley didn’t seem to mind and Khloe she was just a special kid.”
Todd Waterman also rubbishes claims about Robert Kardashian not being Khloe’s biological father. Setting the record straight, he says: “She’s definitely not my kid. We had this affair five years after she was born. I feel sorry that Khloe has to go through something like that.”
However, Todd Waterman recalled Kris Jenner joking about the possibility: “It absolutely is a family joke. Kris joked about that with me. She would say <<You know we don’t know where she got the blonde hair.>> It was a laugh.
“She never said anything like she had an affair before me though. To me Robert was definitely her father. I see Robert in her.”
He added: “To my knowledge I was the only affair she had.”
Todd Waterman has fond memories of Khloe: “Khloe would go out with us. She’d be in the back seat of the car if we were going to lunch.
“I had a special relationship with her more than the other children. She just was the cutest. She was a smart kid and when talking to her sisters, she would say <<You don’t like him do you?>> She was funny.”
In her book, Kris Jenner describes how she caught Todd Waterman in bed with another woman – soon after she split from Robert Kardashian.
“I think I got busted,” Todd Waterman says.
“I don’t remember if that’s exactly how it happened. I’m not justifying the action, I was young, not only that I also allowed myself certain safeguards. Because in my mind she was still going home to her husband and still getting in his bed at night.”
However, Todd Waterman says he was heartbroken when the relationship ended.
He says: “There was no way I could support her [Kris] or help maintain what she was accustomed to financially, and with the age difference as well I didn’t see that working out in the future.
“I was heartbroken. Sometimes you stop something not because you stop caring but because it isn’t practical.”
In another sensational revelation, Todd Waterman alleges that after he and Kris Jenner split up, he continued to sleep with her even when she started dating Bruce Jenner.
Todd Waterman says: “I wouldn’t say we were dating, we were still communicating, she was still coming over to the apartment and we were still sleeping together when she had started dating Bruce.
“I would say that she was getting serious with him [Bruce] and we were still occasionally seeing each other and it was messing with my head. I think we just had a hard time keeping away from each other.”
In the end Todd Waterman moved to London in an attempt to get over her, but he claims Kris Jenner called him three months after she married Bruce and she cried down the phone during a lengthy conversation.
The next time they spoke was in 2000, when Kris Jenner tracked him down via email and they spoke on the phone.
Todd Waterman recalls: “Maybe she was hitting a doldrum in her marriage because I got the impression that she was open to getting together and then I came back to LA and we would talk on the phone and make the appointment, and say <<Starbucks today>> or something but she could never get herself to do it. She never followed through and it’s probably best we didn’t really.”
The pair no longer speak, and Todd Waterman says he is not a fan of Kris Jenner’s reality show Keeping Up With The Kardashians.
Todd Waterman says: “I’ve never watched a full episode, I can’t get myself to. It’s not a good show, it’s not good television. It’s horrible. You want to see how they became famous, it was at the death of a friend and a scandal with her daughter and her daughter’s relations.”
“Kris always worked hard,” he adds. “She wanted to make money, her own money. More power to her but it’s manufactured and there’s an audience for that unfortunately.
“There’s no truth to the shows, they’re all pre-conceived. Kris shared that with me once, that they make it up. It’s mindless, it’s nonsense, like Jersey Shore.”
Experts say that eating fried food may not be bad for the heart, as long as you use olive or sunflower oil to make it.
The specialists found no heightened risk of heart disease or premature death linked to food that had been cooked in this way.
But the investigators stress that their findings, from studying the typical Spanish diet in which these “healthy” oils are found in abundance, do not apply to lard or other cooking oils.
So, traditional fry ups should not be the order of the day, according to a bmj.com report.
When food is fried it becomes more calorific because the food absorbs the fat of the oils.
And experts know that eating lots of fat-laden food can raise blood pressure and cause high cholesterol, which are risk factors for heart disease.
Experts say that eating fried food may not be bad for the heart, as long as you use olive or sunflower oil to make it
For the study, the researchers at the Autonomous University of Madrid surveyed 40,757 adults about their diet.
The participants were asked about what types of food they ate in a typical week and how that food was prepared and cooked.
None of the adults had any sign of heart disease at the start of the 11-year study, but by the end of it 606 heart disease events and 1,134 deaths had occurred.
When the researchers looked at these heart events in detail, they could find no link with fried food in the diet.
This, they believe, is down to the type of oil the food is cooked in.
In an accompanying editorial, Professor Michael Leitzmann from the University of Regensburg in Germany said: “Taken together, the myth that frying food is generally bad for the heart is not supported by available evidence.
“However, this does not mean that frequent meals of fish and chips will have no health consequences.
“The study suggests that specific aspects of frying food are relevant, such as the oil used, together with other aspects of the diet.”
Mediterranean diets have long been hailed as healthy, being packed full of low-fat, high-fibre fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as fresh fish.
And numerous studies have shown a balanced diet such as this can cut the risk of illnesses like cancer and heart disease.
Victoria Taylor, a senior heart health dietitian at the British Heart Foundation, said: “Before we all reach for the frying pan, it’s important to remember that this was a study of a Mediterranean diet rather than British fish and chips. Our diet in the UK will differ from Spain, so we cannot say that this result would be the same for us too.
“Participants in this study used unsaturated fats such as olive and sunflower oil to fry their food. We currently recommend swapping saturated fats like butter, lard or palm oil for unsaturated fats as a way of keeping your cholesterol down and this study gives further cause to make that switch.
“Regardless of the cooking methods used, consuming foods with high fat content means a high calorie intake. This can lead to weight gain and obesity, which is a risk factor for heart disease. A well-balanced diet, with plenty of fruit and veg and only a small amount of high fat foods, is best for a healthy heart.”
Over 36 people have died in the past four weeks from taking oral drugs in Punjab province, Pakistan.
The medicines were provided for free to cardiovascular patients at the government-owned Punjab Institute of Cardiology in Lahore city.
Thousands of prescriptions of these drugs were given to the patients during last month, said hospital officials.
“More than 100 patients brought to various hospitals in Lahore for suspected drug reactions have all been recently under treatment at Punjab Institute of Cardiology, and were given these drugs… We are trying to retrieve all the medicines given out at this hospital,” said Jehanzeb Khan, Punjab provincial Health Secretary.
One or more of at least four medicines taken by the patients caused their deaths.
These drugs include Alfagril (Clopidogrel), Cardiovestin (Simvastatin), Concort (Amlodipine) and Soloprin (Aspirin).
On or more drugs caused a rapid depletion of bone marrow, with a dramatic decrease in white cells and platelets counts that led to bleeding and death, Dr Javed Ikram of the Allama Iqbal Medical College told BBC.
Over 36 people have died from taking contaminated heart medicines in Punjab, Pakistan.
The presence of some bits of metal in the pills is presumed to be the cause of the symptoms.
The drugs by themselves can cause heavy bleeding if they are taken in high doses, if the patient has certain diseases (such ulcer or gastritis, renal failure) or a particular sensitivity to the substance (allergy). It is possible that the faulty pills to have had an improper dosage of the active substance.
A commission was formed by the provincial government to investigate the deaths. “Patients were coming in with symptoms similar to dengue fever. But then we realized it wasn’t that. The one thing common in all patients was heart disease, and that they were getting medicines from the Punjab Institute of Cardiology,” said Faisal Masood, member of the committee.
The owners of two local pharmaceutical firms were arrested. There have not been any comments from them.
One pharmaceutical firm has been sealed off and the drugs would be sent for testing abroad, officials said.
Pakistan Medical Association asked the government in a statement to buy life-saving drugs from other suppliers.
Pakistan’s government was accused of ineptitude and corruption, and of spending a small amount of funds on health. Apparently Pakistanis have little faith in state-run medical centers.
These oral drugs were purchased at competitive rates, said officials. Hospitals have to buy drugs from the lowest bidder, because if they do not, they can be sued by local pharmaceutical companies and even be issued with an injunction against all future purchases, hospital sources told BBC.
Hugo, the 3D epic adventure film directed by Martin Scorsese, leads the charge at 2012 Academy Awards with 11 nominations, including best film and director.
The second in line come The Artist, the French comedy which is up for 10 awards, including best film, director, actor and supporting actress.
Meryl Streep receives her 17th Oscar nomination for her portrayal of Margaret Thatcher, while George Clooney and Brad Pitt are up for best actor.
The winners will be announced in Los Angeles on 26 February.
Seven other films are in competition for the best picture prize alongside The Artist and Hugo.
They are War Horse, Moneyball, The Tree Of Life, Midnight In Paris, The Help, The Descendants, and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close.
Both Hugo and The Artist are love-letters to cinema and reflect an appreciation for the silent era.
Hugo is a heartwarming family tale about an orphaned boy living in a French railway station.
Hugo, the 3D epic adventure film directed by Martin Scorsese, leads the charge at 2012 Academy Awards with 11 nominations
The Artist tells the story of an actor put out of work by the advent of the “talkies”.
Michel Hazanavicius received nods for writing and directing the comedy, while his wife Berenice Bejo was named in the best supporting actress category.
Berenice Bejo said she was “overjoyed and filled with happiness” after hearing of the nominations, while Michael Hazanavicius said the film’s impressive tally of nominations was “far beyond what I ever imagined”.
Jean Dujardin, who stars in the film, will compete for best actor along with George Clooney (The Descendants), Demian Bichir (A Better Life), Brad Pitt (Moneyball) and British actor Gary Oldman (Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy).
It is Gary Oldman’s first nomination, after more than 30 years on the big screen.
He said: “You may have heard this before, but it has never been truer than it is for me today: It is extremely humbling, gratifying, and delightful to have your work recognized by the Academy, and to join the celebrated ranks of previous nominees and colleagues. Amazing.”
Meryl Streep, 62, who is up for best actress, already had more Oscar nominations than any other actor before the Academy announced its 2012 shortlist.
She has now pulled further ahead from Katharine Hepburn and Jack Nicholson, who have 12 nods each and are in second place.
Meryl Streep won twice, for Kramer vs. Kramer and Sophie’s Choice.
Other contenders in this year’s best actress category are Glenn Close (Albert Nobbs), Viola Davis (The Help), Rooney Mara (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo) and Michelle Williams (My Week With Marilyn).
Woody Allen picked up a best director nomination for his 41st movie Midnight In Paris. His competition comes from Martin Scorsese, Hazanavicius, Terrence Malick (The Tree Of Life) and Alexander Payne (The Descendants).
Co-stars of The Help Octavia Spencer and Jessica Chastain will go head to head for the best supporting actress prize.
Melissa McCarthy and Britain’s Janet McTeer complete the category for their roles in Bridesmaids and Albert Nobbs respectively.
It is Janet McTeer’s second Oscar nod, following recognition for 1999’s Tumbleweed.
British star Kenneth Branagh will vie for the best supporting actor title, after playing one of his childhood idols in My Week With Marilyn.
“It was a rare honor to play Sir Laurence Olivier,” he said. “To be recognized by the Academy for doing so is overwhelming. I’m absolutely thrilled.”
Kenneth Branagh’s challengers are Jonah Hill (Moneyball), Nick Nolte (Warrior), Max von Sydow (Extremely Loud And Incredibly Close).
Christopher Plummer, 82, is also on the shortlist for the movie Beginners, in which he plays an elderly father who comes out of the closet.
With a career that spans 60 years, Christopher Plummer’s work largely went unrecognized until two years ago, when he was nominated in the supporting actor category for his portrayal of Leo Tolstoy in The Last Station.
If he wins this time, Christopher Plummer will become the oldest ever actor to receive an Oscar, surpassing Jessica Tandy who was 80 when she was named best actress for Driving Miss Daisy.
The honor could alternatively go to supporting actor nominee Max von Sydow, who is also 82.
Kung Fu Panda 2 was recognized in the animated film category, along with A Cat In Paris, Chico And Rita, Puss In Boots and Rango.
Iranian film A Separation, which recently triumphed at the London Critics Circle awards, received two nods, including best foreign language movie and original screenplay.
As always, there were some surprises. Steve McQueen’s controversial film Shame, starring Michael Fassbender as a sex addict, was notably absent from the nominations.
We Need To Talk About Kevin and Drive, both of which have proven popular with voters at other awards ceremonies, were also missing from the Academy’s longlist.
For the first time, Kim Kardashian spoke up publicly about her divorce from Kris Humphries, as she stepped in to perform co-hosting duties on Live with Kelly in New York City.
Kim Kardashian, 31, who wore a figure-hugging lace red dress, said: “It’s been a hard couple of months.”
The reality star hit back at claims the wedding was just a publicity stunt.
“If you really think about it, if this was a business decision and I really made all that money that everyone was claiming that we made off this wedding, and if the wedding was fake and just for TV, I’m a smart businesswoman, I would have stayed married longer.”
Kim Kardashian added: “I really didn’t think following my heart would create this much backlash.”
She insisted she “tried everythin” to make the relationship work, adding: “I want that forever love, and if I feel in my heart this isn’t right, then why wait years to have the same results?”
Kim Kardashian spoke up publicly about her divorce from Kris Humphries, as she stepped in to perform co-hosting duties on Live with Kelly in New York City
Kim Kardashian revealed that after the split, she packed “two pairs of sweatpants and a pair of pyjamas” and moved in with her mother, Kris Jenner, to do “some soul searching”.
The self-proclaimed “hopeless romantic” hasn’t give up on love though, adding: “I think I just learned that I need to rewrite my fairytale.”
Kim Kardashian was certainly excited about being asked to join Kelly Ripa on the show.
She tweeted today: “Up early glamming for @LiveKelly! Tune in this morning! Xo.”
Kim Kardashian later added: “Going live with @LiveKelly tun into ABC east coast!”
Kelly Ripa – who recently signed a new five-year deal to stay with the show – has had a succession of guest hosts since Regis Philbin’s departure in November. No full-time replacement has been appointed.
Meanwhile, Kim Kardashian has admitted that she broke down in tears while watching last night’s emotional episode of Kourtney and Kim Take New York.
Kim Kardashian – who filed for divorce from in October after just 72 days of marriage – has been seen constantly arguing with the basketball star during the current season of the reality show.
Last night, viewers of Kourtney and Kim take New York saw the moment Kim Kardashian admitted her marriage to Kris Humphries wasn’t working.
Kourtney and Kim Take New York’s season finale part one kicked off with a bang as the newly wed Kim Kardashian came to terms with her feelings and her relationship status.
After meeting with a medium John Edwards, who claimed he was communicating with their late father, Kim Kardashian burst into tears and told her sister: “I don’t want to be married anymore.”
During the session John Edwards asked if either of the sisters were divorced.
Kim Kardashian replied: “I’m divorced, I am I mean I was married now but I was divorced before.”
The medium asked Kim Kardashian if she had learnt from her divorce, claiming that is what her father wanted to know.
It was this line of questioning which upset Kim Kardashian and she confided in her sister Kourtney after the session about how she felt in her relationship.
Kim Kardashian explained: “What was so crazy about that was when he was talking about the divorce stuff.
“I honestly feel like I can’t do this anymore with Kris. I feel like I got into this way too fast. You know I’m not happy.”
John Edwards seemed to know his stuff. Before they barely even had time to get going on the session, John Edwards announced: “OK, I’m going to jump right in.”
After meeting with a medium John Edwards, who claimed he was communicating with their late father, Kim Kardashian burst into tears
During the intense time slot John Edwards also predicted Kourtney Kardashian’s upcoming pregnancy.
“I know you just got married [Kim] and I have to say this. Is somebody pregnant now?”
The star shook her head to suggest there is no baby on the way and the pair seemed shocked when he told them he had a feeling two people are going to be pregnant within the same space of each other.
“I’m seeing twins, so it’s either that or the sign of Gemini in there somewhere. I’m seeing platinum blonde…”
The two eventually come to the suggestion that their younger sibling Khloe Kardashian –who has been trying for a child with NBA star Lamar Odom for some time and used to have lighter locks – will be the one to become a new mum, an idea which John confirms is correct.
During a stroll through New York with older sister Kourtney Kardashian, she suggested they go to see a medium as they reminisced about the tourist locations they used to visit in the past with their late father Robert Kardashian.
The pair decided to visit a psychic to find out what advice their dad would give to them if he were alive, although Kourtney Kardashian wasn’t so sure.
“I don’t know I’m just against it. I don’t think you should do it.”
However, Kim Kardashian was obviously in search of some direction for her failing marriage and indirectly that’s just what she got.
The episode was inevitably geared to towards Kim Kardashian’s second revelation that she wanted to split from Kris Humphries.
Throughout the show, which screened on Sunday in the United States, Kim Kardashian couldn’t help but be agitated by the mere sound of her husband’s voice, and when he announced that his sister Kayla is coming to town, the star was angered by the 26-year-old’s failure to communicate with her on the matter.
When she told him she didn’t know she would be coming from their home town of Minnesota and that she’s busy, he snapped: “Maybe you should take the ten minutes you spend with me and spend it with her instead,” to which she nonchalantly replied, “OK”.
Even in last week’s episode she told mother Kris Jenner that she wasn’t excited about getting home to her basketball player husband after a trip to Dubai with the matriarch.
On the other hand, Kourtney Kardashian and her husband Scott Disick were making the effort to socialize more and embarked on a walk around the Big Apple where they got cartoon-style portraits drawn by a street artist.
The outing is one of many which the couple take to spice up their relationship and when they decide to create a more tasteful piece of art, the mother-of-one told the painter: “He’s fun, he’s very over the top, he’s a good dad…”
While Scott Disick gushed: “I think I fell in love with her because she was cute and down to earth. I knew she had a good heart.”
The loved up pair had the right idea while Kim Kardashian and Kris Humphries bickered over their different personalities.
As the brunette tried to avoid greeting her sister-in-law, insisting that she be allowed to run off to bed, speaking to camera, her other half confesses: “I’m happy to have one of my family members around for a change.”
But in post-production Kim Kardashian explains her actions: “I’m having such a rough time with him that it’s hard to let another one of his family members into my heart.
“It’s better for all of us if I keep my distance from Kayla so she doesn’t catch wind that there’s tension.”
Her arrangements clearly aren’t putting her on the good side of her new family, with aspiring plus size model Kayla telling her sibling: “I wish Kim had more time to spend with us,” as they leave the Gansevort Hotel where they have residence to have lunch.
In an effort to get back at his new wife, her brother tells waiting photographers of her whereabouts and encourages them not to follow him: “Kim’s leaving in like two minutes, you might want to stay over there buddy,” prompting the close brother and sister to laugh.
As the two sat down to eat, Kris Humphries opened up to Kayla about her demanding schedule versus starting a family: “I don’t know she’s going to be willing to make the sacrifices.”
“Speaking of Kim is she mad at me? I’d really like to get to know her and hang out with her,” to which he replied, “we can arrange that”.
Eventually, Kayla resorts to hanging out with Scott Disick, complaining about the lack of attention she is getting while in the city.
He drops the bombshell that Kim Kardashian didn’t even know that she was coming. As her face drops he reassures her: “I wouldn’t worry about it that much” but to camera he describes the events as “crazy”.
After Kayla leaves town in a huff, the businesswoman begins to feel bad about her approach but Kris Humphries isn’t sympathetic.
“Kim you could’ve at least made more of an effort,” but when Kim Kardashian develops her concerns about their blossoming friendship he somewhat comforts her by saying: “I’m sure she doesn’t hate you but she’s probably just over your ‘I’m too busy for anyone attitude.”
As tensions build she does find some light relief in Kourtney Kardashian and Scott Disick’s light spat about a portrait gone wrong.
After the eldest Kardashian arranges it so the artist creates the look of a unibrow on her beau with the help of black tape, the entrepreneur is less than impressed and storms off into their bedroom.
Kris Humphries is more than happy to provide relationship advice for his sister in law, telling her that her partner only wants to know she appreciated the gesture.
The petite fashion designer agrees, “true dat”.
The pair then go on to fix the rough patch by letting Kim Kardashian direct an adorable photo shoot for them on a rooftop.
Next week’s show looks set to be a powerful one with the preview showing Kris Humphries telling a friend in the back of a car: “Kim’s been acting weird and distant. I’m just over her.”
A new Nature Genetics report says that scientists may be closer to understanding how genes can influence serious heart conditions.
The failure to turn off a specific gene at the right time in an embryo’s development could mean illness later in life.
Mice in which the gene was left active were born apparently healthy, but suffered heart muscle problems later.
A heart charity said it might one day be possible to fix the genetic switch.
The science of “epigenetics”, which places importance not just on the genes you carry, but also how well they are working, is a relatively new area.
The scientists from the Gladstone Institute in San Francisco focused on two genes, and their role in cardiomyopathy, a enlarging and weakening of the heart muscle which is a feature in life-threatening heart defects in children and adults
There is increasing evidence that suggests that while you carry the same set of genes for life, environmental factors, such as diet or even your mother’s health while you are in the womb, could affect their activity, and your chances of certain illnesses later in life.
The scientists from the Gladstone Institute in San Francisco focused on two genes, and their role in cardiomyopathy, a enlarging and weakening of the heart muscle which is a feature in life-threatening heart defects in children and adults.
One of the genes, called Six1, appears to play an important role in embryonic heart development, while the other, Ezh2, seems to have the job of switching off genes, including Six1, when they are no longer needed.
The scientists tested the precise relationship by stopping Ezh2 from working in the embryo and foetus at various points during pregnancy, thereby allowing Six1 to go on working for longer than usual.
They found that while the mice were born apparently normal and healthy, they then started to develop the signs of cardiomyopathy.
This suggested that although leaving Six1 switched on in humans might produce a seemingly healthy baby, it could be storing up heart problems for later in life.
Analysis of the results revealed that, in a healthy pregnancy, Six1 should only normally be switched on briefly during heart development.
Dr. Paul Delgado-Olguin, one of the team, said: “When Six1 remains active for too long in Ezh2-deficient mice, it boosts the activity of other genes that shouldn’t be activated in heart muscle cells – such as genes that make skeletal muscle.
“The enlargement and thickening of the mice’s hearts over time eventually led to heart failure.”
They are hopeful that further work will reveal more about the roots of congenital heart problems in early life.
Scientists claim that tall men are 24% less at risk of heart problems, besides other advantages.
Harvard researchers have found that those who are more than 6ft are 24% less likely to suffer from heart failure than men just a few inches smaller.
Scientists looked at the records of 22,000 male doctors in their mid-fifties who were subsequently followed over a 22-year period.
They each filled in an initial questionnaire on their height, weight and general health and then every year subsequently filled in surveys about any new medical diagnoses.
The study, published in the American Journal of Cardiology, found that 1,444 men developed heart failure which was about 7% of the total.
Men who were 6 ft (1.8 meters) or over were 24% less likely to report having heart failure than those who were 5ft 8 (1.72 meters) or smaller.
This was after their age and weight, as well as whether they had high blood pressure and diabetes, had all been taken into account.
The scientists think that one reason is that shorter men may have had childhood diseases that stunted their growth. In adulthood this could have led to the build-up of plaque in their arteries and higher blood pressure.
But they also think that the biology of taller men may put them at less risk.
Men who were 6 ft (1.8 meters) or over were 24 per cent less likely to report having heart failure than those who were 5ft 8 (1.72 meters) or smaller
Scientists say that there is greater distance between certain points in tall men’s arteries and their hearts which puts the heart under less strain.
Jeffrey Teuteberg, a cardiologist at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center who was not involved in the study said: “As much as we know about the development of very common diseases like heart failure, there’s still a lot we don’t know.
“There’s still a lot more that impacts the development of those diseases beyond those things.
“The message certainly shouldn’t be: <<If you’re tall, don’t worry about these sorts of things, or if you’re short, you’re doomed.>>”
Heart failure affects occurs when the heart are too weak to properly pump blood around the body and can be caused by heart attacks, which cause the organ to weaken.