Heart Studies: Alcohol Abstinence For Atrial Fibrillation Reduces Arrhythmia (NEJM)

Alcohol Abstinence for Atrial Fibrillation New England Journal of Medicine January 1 2020

Abstinence from alcohol reduced arrhythmia recurrences in regular drinkers with atrial fibrillation. 

New England Journal of Medicine

January 2, 2020 Atrial fibrillation is the most common sustained arrhythmia,1 and alcohol is consumed by a majority of U.S. adults.2 The current study showed that among regular drinkers, a substantial reduction in alcohol consumption by patients with symptomatic atrial fibrillation was associated with a reduction in recurrence of atrial fibrillation and a reduced proportion of time spent in atrial fibrillation. Earlier meta-analyses showed that alcohol was associated with a dose-related increased risk of incident atrial fibrillation, with increased risk observed even among drinkers who consumed as few as 7 drinks per week.8 Current trends show a rise in alcohol consumption among adults older than 60 years of age,2coupled with greater prevalence of atrial fibrillation in this age group. The present study, with participants having an average intake of approximately 17 drinks per week at baseline, suggests that consumption at these levels may contribute to atrial fibrillation.

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Profiles: 79-Year Old NBA Commissioner David Stern Has Died (1942-2020)

From an NBA.com online release:

“It was David Stern being a marketing genius who turned the league around. That’s why our brand is so strong,” said (Magic) Johnson, who announced he was retiring because of HIV in 1991 but returned the following year at the All-Star Game with Stern’s backing.

“It was David Stern who took this league worldwide.”

NEW YORK — David Stern, the basketball-loving lawyer who took the NBA around the world during 30 years as its longest-serving commissioner and oversaw its growth into a global powerhouse, died Wednesday. He was 77.

Stern suffered a brain hemorrhage on Dec. 12 and underwent emergency surgery. The league said he died with his wife, Dianne, and their family at his bedside.

Stern had been involved with the NBA for nearly two decades before he became its fourth commissioner on Feb. 1, 1984. By the time he left his position in 2014 — he wouldn’t say or let league staffers say “retire,” because he never stopped working — a league that fought for a foothold before him had grown to a more than $5 billion a year

industry and made NBA basketball perhaps the world’s most popular sport after soccer.

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Poetic Tribute: “The Swan” By Mary Oliver (1935 -2019)

The Swan

Did you too see it, drifting, all night, on the black river?
Did you see it in the morning, rising into the silvery air –
An armful of white blossoms,
A perfect commotion of silk and linen as it leaned
into the bondage of its wings; a snowbank, a bank of lilies,
Biting the air with its black beak?
Did you hear it, fluting and whistling
A shrill dark music – like the rain pelting the trees – like a waterfall
Knifing down the black ledges?
And did you see it, finally, just under the clouds –
A white cross Streaming across the sky, its feet
Like black leaves, its wings Like the stretching light of the river?
And did you feel it, in your heart, how it pertained to everything?
And have you too finally figured out what beauty is for?
And have you changed your life?

– Mary Oliver

New Years Resolutions: “Stop Making Excuses Not To Exercise!!” (NY Times)

From a New York Times online article:

The New York Time logoAt the moment, about two-thirds of Americans do not meet the standard exercise guidelines of about 30 minutes a day of moderate exercise, such as walking.

These findings might suggest that, if we adjusted our schedules and turned off the TV, phone or computer, most of us would have plenty of time to work out.

Screen Time vs Physical Activity vs Free Time Chart CDC

Almost all of the respondents — whatever their income, age, gender or ethnicity — reported about five hours a day of leisure time. Men tended to have more free time than women, older people more than the young, and African-American women the least of all. But no group reported less than about four and a half hours a day of free time.

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New Travel Videos: “Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia 2019” By Indo-Pacific Films

This is a showreel showcasing some of our work from 2019. Most of this showreel has been taken in the Nusa Tenggara Region in Indonesia at the islands of Alor, Komodo, Flores and Bali.

2019 has been an incredible journey that took us close to some of the most beautiful and fascinating cultures as well as spectacular sceneries and great encounters with the most captivating marine life.

The locations and the people featured:

0-11 sec. Kelimutu Volcano Sunrise – Flores Island.
11-41 sec. The Traditional Waving ( Ikat ) from the tribes – Maumere mountains – Flores.
41 sec. to 1:05 sec. Samambaia Liveaboard and dolphins in Komodo and Alor.
1:05 sec. to 1:32 sec. Talent Freediver Leona Chen from China in Nusa Penida island, Bali.
1:32 sec. to 1:47 sec. Manta Ray from Manta Point dive site in Nusa Penida, Bali.
1:47 sec. to 2:16 sec. Talent Freediver Leona Chen at the Liberty Shipwreck Dive site in Tulamben, Bali.
2:16 sec. to 2:41sec. Fishermen from Alor Island
2:41 sec. till End Manta, Speed boat, Reef and Samata Luxury Liveaboard filmed in Komodo Island.

Website

Hotels: “Waldhaus Sils” In Sils Maria, Switzerland – In A Venue Called “Heroic And Idyllic” By Nietzsche

111 Years Hotel Waldhaus Sils – History and Stories for an Unreasonable Family Dream Book111 Years of Waldhaus Sils ranges across the hotel’s life and history. Founders Josef and Amalie Giger and their descendants, by now in the fifth generation, have guided the “house in the woods” with skill and fortitude through good times and bad through the twentieth century and into the present. The owners and their exceptionally diverse guests—lively families side-by-side with intellectuals and artists of world renown—have created a unique blend of luxury and modesty, historic grandeur and playful fun, smooth professionalism and unexpected idiosyncrasies.

Those in the know are aware that Wes Anderson’s Grand Budapest Hotel has a real-life counterpart in the Swiss Alps: The Waldhaus Sils, which has pleased and puzzled visitors for 111 years and become an icon of Swiss hospitality. Located above the small village of Sils Maria near St. Moritz, it overlooks a striking landscape of forests, lakes and mountains and offers a combination of Belle Epoque flair and modern comfort. Its distinctive charm comes from the fact that the Waldhaus has been family-owned and operated since its grand opening on June 15, 1908.

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Interviews: Author Of “The First Cell” Azra Raza On Why Today’s Cancer Research Is Failing (Video)

Slash, poison, burn. That’s what a leading cancer doctor calls the protocol of The First Cell and the Human Costs of Pursuing Cancer to the last Azra Raza booksurgery, chemotherapy and radiation. We spend $150 billion each year treating cancer, yet a patient with cancer is as likely to die of it today — with a few exceptions — as one was 50 years ago. Today we spend the hour with renowned cancer doctor, Dr. Azra Raza, author of the new book, “The First Cell: And the Human Costs of Pursuing Cancer to the Last.” She argues that experiments and the funding for eradicating cancer look at the disease when it is in its later stages, when the cancer has grown and spread. Instead, she says, the focus should be on the very first stages — the first cell, as her book is titled. She says this type of treatment would be more effective, cheaper and less toxic.

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