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Navigating travel with neurodiverse kids

Traveling with neurodiverse children can be challenging, but with careful planning and expert advice, families can make the experience smoother and stress-free. Prioritizing routine and familiar environments are crucial, along with avoiding overwhelming destinations.

Strategic packing plays a significant role in ensuring a successful trip. Bringing sensory items like headphones, weighted blankets, and fidget toys can help provide comfort and security. Researching local food sources for diets and packing essential items will ensure a reliable supply throughout the journey.

Families can benefit from air travel assistance programs such as TSA Cares, which offer support services for families with special needs. Programs like Wings for Autism and Wings for All provide opportunities for practice and preparation, and many airports have sensory rooms for relaxation.

Creating a personalized narrative, known as a “social story,” can help children prepare for new experiences and reduce anxiety. OTs can assist in developing visual schedules that outline the events of the trip.

Managing expectations and embracing flexibility are vital, but parents should also find moments to enjoy their vacation. Trusted caretakers and staff can also offer respite for parents, allowing them to recharge.

Source: Yahoo Life

Ready for your ‘crapsule’? The role of fecal transplants

Within the realm of medical innovation, an unconventional procedure is gaining attention for its potential to transform human health. 

Faecal microbiota transplant (FMT) is a procedure whereby feces is transferred to the stomach through a tube or a capsule – a ‘crapsule’, if you will. In the last two decades, scientists have uncovered the significance of the ‘gut microbiome’, a diverse collection of microbes contained in our bodies, which has also been linked to chronic diseases. 

Take, for example, the case of Raymond, a former bus driver who battled genetic heart problems and eventually developed leukemia. After being treated with intravenous antibiotics for pneumonia, Raymond suffered from a severe Clostriduim difficile (C diff) infection. This disease, a consequence of antibiotic use, destroys the gut lining and can be fatal. When standard treatment with antibiotics fails, FMT can be introduced as a potential solution. FMT, which introduces healthy fecal matter in an effort to restore the gut microbiome, has proven effective for patients who experience C diff relapses. 

In the quest to revolutionize, scientists are harnessing the power of the gut microbiome. FMT offers hope for patients like Raymond, highlighting the potential of ‘good crap’ to combat debilitating diseases caused by harmful microbes. 

Source: The Guardian

Could taurine be the secret to a longer life? 

A recent study has found that taurine, a nutrient naturally produced in the body and present in certain foods, may hold the key to slowing down the aging process. The study revealed that animals with a taurine deficiency experienced accelerated aging. Conversely, the researchers found that taurine supplements slowed down aging in monkeys, mice, and worms, increasing their healthy lifespans. 

In experiments on middle-aged mice, those fed taurine exhibited a 10-12% longer lifespan and showed improved overall health. Taurine intake was associated with weight suppression, increased energy expenditure, enhanced bone mass, improved muscle strength and endurance, reduced anxiety and depression, and a more robust immune system. Similar positive effects were observed in rhesus monkeys, where taurine supplements led to reduced weight gain, improved liver markers, increased bone density, and enhanced immune health. 

Initial findings on European adults also supported the idea that lower taurine deficiency might contribute to human aging as taurine concentrations were lower in older adults.

So where should you start? Researchers recommend that adults consume foods that are high in taurine, such as shellfish, dark chicken, turkey meat. 

Source: The Jerusalem Post

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