Three ‘common’ sensations in ‘upper limbs’ that can signal blood clot – can ‘impact sleep’

Blood clots are extremely serious health ordeals that need to be treated as soon as possible. Being aware of the symptoms, or having someone around that does, in some cases can mean the difference between life and death. Some of these symptoms may arise in your “upper limbs”, primarily your arms, neck, and shoulders.

There are two main types of blood clots, that are grouped together based on what blood vessels they affect.

A blood clot in your artery is called an arterial clot. These can bring about a stroke or a heart attack.

But a blood clot in your vein is known as a venous clot. Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is one type of venous clot.

One of the main dangers of DVT is that the clot breaks off from where it starts and spreads to your lungs, known as a pulmonary embolism (PE). PE affects roughly one in ten with DVT.

People with DVT in one of the veins in their upper body, may also experience “pain in their arms too”, explains the charity.

This typically starts in the upper arm, before moving to the forearm with time.

“Similar to sufferers of DVT in their legs, patients might also experience swelling in their hands or arms,” explains Thrombosis UK.

“This is also typically unexplained, occurring suddenly and without an obvious cause.”

People may also notice a change in the colour of the areas of their body that are affected by a blood clot.

The colour may look like a pale blue, and will usually be accompanied by weakness.

According to the charity, people may struggle to do everyday activities such as picking up objects or opening a door.

It’s also worth being aware of the signs of a pulmonary embolism, just in case you or your doctor don’t attribute your symptoms to DVT, or you don’t notice any signs.

Spire Health explains: “If you experience trouble breathing it may be a sign that the clot has moved from your arm or leg to your lungs, causing a pulmonary embolism — you should get medical attention immediately.”

Fortunately, there are several things you can do to cut down your risk of suffering from DVT.

Frequent exercise is vital. Being inactive for a long time increases the chances of your blood clotting.

The website familydoctor.org recommends getting up every “hour or so” and walking around, or doing leg exercises.

The health portal also recommends making effort to stop smoking, lose weight if you are overweight and work to control your blood pressure.

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  • 42 минуты назад 06.12.2022Health Care
    Pharyngitis ‘top’ Covid symptom in vaccinated patients as UK cases ‘creep back up’

    Covid vaccines are effective at staving off serious disease but they are no miracle workers. You can still catch the pesky virus even if you’ve had all your jabs which makes knowing symptoms front and centre. Vaccinated people tend to experience similar but milder signs to those without their jab, with pharyngitis being able to ring alarm bells “early”.

    The Zoe Covid Study App, which keeps a track of dominant Covid symptoms through reports from positive patients using the app, explains pharyngitis is the most dominant symptom currently seen in fully vaccinated patients.

    The reason why jabbed patients might experience different signs comes down mostly to the severity of symptoms, according to Zoe.

    Pharyngitis, better known as sore throat, describes any discomfort, pain, or scratchiness that can often make swallowing uncomfortable.

    The data from Zoe reports that this “very common” sign affected around 69 percent of their users.

    What’s more, pharyngitis could be the first symptom that breaks the news of a new infection.

    Considered an “early” Covid symptom, sore throat usually appears in the first week of the illness.

    While this achy sign might feel worse on the first day, Covid pharyngitis fortunately tends to get better on each following day.

    Furthermore, Covid sore throat usually feels similar to what you might experience during a cold – think a “scratchy or irritated” sensation.

    Zoe explains: “Covid-related sore throats tend to be relatively mild and last no more than five days.

    “A very painful sore throat that lasts more than five days may be something else, such as a bacterial infection, so don’t be afraid to contact your GP if the problem persists.”

    Sore throat is currently ranked as “top” Covid symptom that appears in those who had two vaccines.

    However, pharyngitis can also appear in those who haven’t had their jabs, according to Zoe.

    See the latest Covid vaccine stats below and visit InYourArea for all the Covid vaccine latest

    The study app explains: “Generally, we saw similar symptoms of COVID-19 being reported overall in the app by people who had and hadn’t been vaccinated.

    “However, fewer symptoms were reported over a shorter period of time by those who had already had a jab, suggesting that they were falling less seriously ill and getting better more quickly.

    “Curiously, we noticed that people who had been vaccinated and then tested positive for COVID-19 were more likely to report sneezing as a symptom compared with those without a jab.”

    This comes as Covid cases “creep back up” after weeks of decline.

    Speaking on Zoe’s YouTube Channel, Professor Spector said: “The numbers stopped falling for the first time in weeks and just started to creep back up which is really annoying.

    “We’re now over 150,000 estimated cases which is up just about three and a half percent from two weeks ago so nothing dramatic.

    “But it’s certainly not looking like it’s going to go down and one in 32 people at the moment have Covid.”

    While there’s no need to self-isolate by the law, the NHS still asks people to stay at home and avoid contact with others if infected.

  • 42 минуты назад 06.12.2022Health Care
    Longevity scientist shares dietary tip to activate ‘gene’ seen in people living past 100

    Ageing is a multifactorial process determined by a person’s genetic makeup and environment. Among the various genetic components connected to human longevity, the FOX03 gene has consistently been proven the most essential. Though everyone carries it, eating certain foods may allow it to express further, thus prolonging lifespan. One ageing scientist suggests that a metabolite unique to several dietary sources could hold the key for activating the “longevity gene”.

    According to Weill Cornell Medicine, studies of humans “who live longer than 100 years” have shown that many of these individuals share an unusual version of a gene known as The Forehead box protein O3 (FOXO3).

    Doctor Bradley Willcox, the principal investigator of the National Institute on Ageing-funded Kuakini Hawaii Lifespan Study, suggests there are ways this gene can be activated through diet.

    The longevity expert explained: “The bottom line is that even if you don’t have the ‘best’ FOX03 variant in terms of longevity, by expressing or ‘turning on’ the gene, you’ll be able to duplicate the longevity mechanism.

    “You can do it by eating certain foods, which is one of the functions that the Okinawan diet achieves.”

    He said: “It’s known as a marine carotenoid, found in seaweeds and kelp. It’s part of the Okinawan diet and shows particular promise in our research.

    “These include Okinawa sweet potatoes, turmeric, marine-based carotenoid-rich foods, as well as other items which have compounds such as astaxanthin that will express this gene.

    “The compound has powerful, broad-ranging anti-oxidative and anti-inflammatory properties.”

    The red pigment occurs in certain algae and is responsible for giving salmon its pink-red colour.

    Research suggests the chemical may be of particular benefit to those suffering inflammatory conditions like arthritis or rheumatoid disorders.

    In 2017, scientists at the University of Hawaii Cancer Centre suggested that the compound was able to ‘switch on the FOX03 ‘Longevity Gene’ in mice.

    Researchers observed an almost 90 percent increase in the activation of the gene in the heart tissue of rodents.

    One way the gene may promote longevity is by countering the effects of toxic proteins that drive neurodegenerative disease and shorten lifespan.

  • 42 минуты назад 06.12.2022Health Care
    Heart attack: Two ‘sensations’ in the hands may signal arteries have narrowed by 70%

    Atherosclerosis is diagnosed when a substantial amount of patchy fat deposits have grown inside the walls of medium-sized and large arteries, blocking blood flow to the heart. The condition inflicts repetitive injury to the blood vessels which eventually leads to heart attacks if left unmanaged. Unfortunately, a heart attack is often the first symptom to emerge, but some cases are preceded by sensations in the arms and hands.

    Various health bodies state that symptoms of atherosclerosis are more likely to emerge once the arteries have narrowed by more than 70 percent.

    That’s because this degree of narrowing is accompanied by significantly reduced blood flow to the heart.

    Understanding how the various stages of narrowing arteries present clinically, however, can raise the opportunity for doctors to intervene before it’s too late.

    According to the Vascular Institute of New York, a build-up of arterial plaque can cause several symptoms in the hands.

    What’s more, chest pain can also stem from dozens of conditions besides a heart attack, from panic attacks to pneumonia.

    The UT Southwestern Medical Centre explains: “Artery blockages are not created equal.

    “Treatment of an artery that is 70 percent blocked is much easier than treating one that has been 100 percent blocked for a long time.

    “The symptoms, chest pain, tightness and shortness of breath – can be similar though.”

    Occasionally if an artery becomes entirely blocked, a new supply of blood will form around the blockage.

    This new channel, however, is unlikely to supply the heart with enough blood and will likely lead to the same symptoms of chest pain and shortness of breath.

    “If you have symptoms, a stress test can help determine if they are caused by a block in an artery or something else,” adds the UT Southwestern Medical Centre.

    Asymptomatic disease progression not only leads to the occurrence of heart attacks but can also cause unstable angina pectoris and sudden cardiac death.

    The condition may be equally harmful to the brain, however.

    In fact, research conducted by the Radiological Society of North America, suggests asymptomatic atherosclerosis is a significant risk factor for cognitive impairment.

    Various studies have underscored the importance of identifying atherosclerosis in the early stages.

    Getting blood checked regularly for cholesterol, triglycerides and lipoproteins, is one way to prevent long-term damage to the vital organs.

  • 1 час, 14 минут назад 06.12.2022Health Care
    News The Buckshee

    Training in the Food and Drug Administration’s office that oversees licensed vaccines has decreased dramatically in recent years, raising concerns that the team is not equipped to identify quality control issues in manufacturing, according to three former inspectors.

    An agency-wide reorganization and an influx of inexperienced inspectors led to an increased workload, particularly during the pandemic, they said. In the last several years, multiple inspectors have left the team, citing internal frustrations over the lack of training and concern that supervisors had little knowledge of the complexities associated with the inspections they oversee.

    All three former inspectors worked in one of the FDA’s most critical offices, Team Biologics, which is responsible for inspecting licensed vaccine products, as well as cord blood, allergenic, gene and cell-therapy products.

    The former inspectors said they do not know of any instances in which Team Biologics accidentally missed a contamination of a vaccine or failed to report a manufacturing issue. However, they said they are concerned about inspectors misidentifying a problem or overlooking a serious issue if more rigorous training is not reinstated and experienced inspectors are not brought on to the team.

    The FDA is already dealing with the fallout of an infant formula crisis after a Michigan manufacturing plant reported that Cronobacter bacteria had come into contact with plant equipment, contaminating the product. That exacerbated a national formula shortage. Many of the themes discussed in a recent FDA report about the baby formula crisis mirror the current problems on Team Biologics, the former inspectors said. One of the agency’s main admissions: The food division is understaffed and its inspectors lack adequate training.

    Audra Harrison, a spokesperson for the FDA, said the inspectors on Team Biologics are “highly trained professionals” who produce thorough assessments of each facility during inspection.

    “The FDA’s highest priority is protecting public health and, as an agency, that commitment is firm in the best of times or when facing a global pandemic,” Harrison said. “The American public can and should be confident that they remain our foremost concern.”

    Two of the ex-inspectors left the agency in the last nine months and worked at the agency for more than 15 years. All were granted anonymity because they feared retribution from their former agency.

    However, close to half of the inspectors on the team have not received the training that they need to identify missteps or abnormalities in manufacturing when visiting facilities — a critical step in ensuring the products are safe for use once released to the market, the former inspectors said.

    “The very reason Team Biologics was formed the way it was formed is because the substance is very complex and we wanted people who were hyper-specialized, and if they needed to get additional training, you would train this cadre and keep them up to speed,” said John Taylor, a former senior FDA official.

    Taylor said he is aware of concerns about training among inspectors throughout the agency — not just on Team Biologics. “If training is diminishing and or the experience level of the people joining is diminishing then I can see that being a problem,” he said.

    The year before Covid emerged, Team Biologics carried out, on average, about 75 inspections a year, one of the former inspectors said. When the pandemic hit, on-site inspections were significantly reduced and the backlog grew, as the team worked hard to complete in-person inspections for all the Covid-19 vaccines being produced in the United States.

    But even as the urgency of the office’s work increased — with all Americans eligible for Covid-19 vaccinations — it suffered from a continued loss of veteran inspectors.

    At least nine inspectors have left Team Biologics in recent years in part because the lack of training for new hires forced more veteran inspectors — inspectors who were required to pass rigorous classes when they started the job — to take on additional work, the former inspectors said. Others left because of disagreements with supervisors — almost all of whom did not have backgrounds in dealing with the procuts the inspectors on Team Biologics are required to oversee, according to the former inspectors.

    Team Biologics normally has between 13 and 16 inspectors. But it has struggled to bring on new staff with prior experience working with biological drug products, the former inspectors said. Some of the newer team members joined the team after the FDA launched an internal reorganization in 2017. The reorganization paired the vaccine inspectors with those that specialized in blood and tissue products, meaning that some people who had little or no prior experience working with biological drug products started going on inspections of those manufacturing facilities.

    The new hires did not receive the same kinds of intensive, in-person classroom training that inspectors hired earlier had received, focused on the biological drug products or how the products are made, the former inspectors said.

    Harrison did not offer details on the number of courses or specific kind of training the FDA requires its inspectors to attend. She said inspectors who join the team “receive training on how to conduct inspections at vaccine facilities.”

    Harrison acknowledged the agency’s need to build out its inspection staff and said it is pushing to expand the educational opportunities it offers its employees. The FDA is asking Congress for more than $23 million for its inspections program to help address the postponed surveillance inspections — a backlog that grew during Covid — and maintain staff.

    “FDA investigators have been critical to the nation’s response to COVID-19, ensuring FDA-regulated Covid-19 products are able to be used to save American lives,” Harrison said in a statement. “Staff turnover in public health is high and the FDA is not immune to these conditions, particularly the biologics staff who have been working on two public health emergencies while keeping the normal cadence of agency business moving forward.”

    The former inspectors said the unspecified promise of additional training while blaming the pandemic for staff turnover carries a familiar echo.

    “They keep promising that they will be trained, they will be trained. But it never happens,” the first former inspector, who recently left the agency, said.

    The second former inspector who recently left the agency put it this way: “What our directors are doing now — they’re just like, ‘we’ll create our own training’ — which they haven’t been able to do for five years — and ‘we’ll figure it out from there.’ This is all while inspections are actively going on.”

    Several of the complaints raised by former staff, including mismanagement by supervisors, were reflected in part in a 2019 whistleblower complaint first reported by Vanity Fair. The complaint detailed a scenario in which an inspector, Arie Menachem, flagged unsafe practices at a Merck manufacturing facility only to have his supervisor downplay his findings.

    But the training issues described by the former inspectors are far more extensive than previously understood and have persisted, according to the former inspectors.

    The former inspectors said they participated in more than a dozen training courses during their time at the agency. Some of those classes lasted weeks and required inspectors attend in-person instructional courses with industry representatives on how to inspect, manufacture and test specialized products overseen by the team.

    The current inspection staff did not attend the same training courses as their veteran colleagues. The newer hires completed virtual video tutorials on basic inspection rules and procedures, the former inspectors said. Now, about half of the inspectors do not have any background in inspecting biological drug products and they are often forced to learn on the job, the former inspectors said.

    “Now, they’ve just moved some of these people over, like ‘Oh, you do blood inspections, you can just come over and start doing drug [and vaccine] inspections,’ which is ridiculous,” the second of the former inspectors said. “That institutional knowledge of the manufacturing process is important.”

    Executives in the pharmaceutical industry — including those that work in vaccine facilities — have begun to pick up on the lack of training, according to a person familiar with the matter who has worked with several high-profile vaccine manufacturers.

    “They used to be feared in industry,” the person said of Team Biologics. “But recently it’s been clear that the training isn’t there. The inspectors make observations on what the operator does — if they move too fast or don’t sanitize their hands in the right way. It is important that the inspector is experienced and knows what to look for. The inspector who doesn’t know couldn’t catch a problem or could question a perfectly good practice.”

    A serious mission

    Congress founded Team Biologics in 1997 to help oversee inspections of biological drug manufacturers. The FDA at the same time created the Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, a separate office that oversees pre-approval and pre-license investigations of the same products.

    “Team Biologics … promote[s] and protect[s] the public health through coordinated, integrated assessments of the compliance status of biological drug manufacturers,” according to the FDA website.

    The team began oversight of the industry manufacturing, processing and distributing of products like allergenics, vaccines, therapeutic drugs as well as in vitro diagnostic products. The team started taking on inspections of placental and umbilical cord blood products later in 2010 and gene and cell therapy several years after that.

    Many of the products overseen by Team Biologics are manufactured using aseptic processing, a specific system that produces sterile injectable products.

    “It is important to become thoroughly familiar with each step in the process, before attempting to evaluate the system for compliance,” a section of the FDA’s website on inspections says.

    But the former inspectors say the managers of Team Biologics haven’t provided newer inspectors with rigorous training opportunities that educate them on how aseptic processing works and how to ensure everything from the equipment to the manufacturing is sound.

    Harrison pushed back on that claim, saying some of the courses offered to Team Biologics inspectors focus on biological drugs, sterilization and aseptic processing. She did not provide details of how long those courses lasted or whether they were conducted in person.

    When the FDA hired people onto Team Biologics during the early years after its formation, inspectors were required to go through a series of training programs, including training that educated inspectors about aseptic processing. Those programs also included sessions on the freezing of vaccine product, the fermentation process, medical device training as well as special classes on products overseen by the team.

    “[Some of] the newer hires have … not even attended basic drug school,” the second former inspector said, adding that they had also not completed nearly as many hours of rigorous training as those who were hired after Team Biologics formed.

    The first former inspector said they participated in one training course that lasted three weeks.

    “It was intense. And you had to pass things by 90 percent or so. If you didn’t, you had to retake,” the former inspector said. “Then every year thereafter we had to go to headquarters where we were retrained on whatever is new. But that has not happened for more than 10 years.”

    Harrison did not answer questions about exactly how many inspectors who have joined Team Biologics since 2020 have prior experience inspecting facilities that produce drug products. She also did not answer questions about how many people had experience inspecting vaccine facilities before joining the team.

    A Merger

    Team Biologics merged with another team— one that focused on unlicensed blood and tissue products — after the FDA moved in 2017 to reorganize parts of the agency, the inspectors said. The reorganization came to be known internally as “program alignment.” The move attempted to streamline processes, including inspections, within the FDA. But former inspectors said it complicated the work because their new supervisors did not have experience working in complex biological drug inspections.

    In the years that followed, a new set of inspectors — both from the previous unlicensed blood and tissue product investigative team as well as new hires — did not have the experience necessary for inspecting biological drug products, the former inspectors said.

    “Blood, along with the other biologics — they are life-sustaining products. It requires complex manufacturing. The risk profile of not doing it well is profound,” Taylor, the former FDA official, said. “You want people who are really well versed in the science and issue spotting so they can identify these issues quickly … and steps can be taken to address the problem.”

    The newer staff were also never enrolled in the same training programs as their veteran colleagues had completed, making it difficult for them to actively participate in inspections outside of completing basic, administrative tasks, one of the former inspectors said.

    One of the former inspectors said the current inspectors plunge into the job having only watched online instructional videos, most of which focused on how to wear proper inspection gear and how to clean manufacturing areas. Some of the videos also included details on how to conduct visual inspections of facilities. The current inspectors learn primarily on the job, the former inspector said.

    “Not only were we supposed to cover and do the inspections, we were supposed to train them [ourselves],” the second former inspector said of needing to help educate newer inspectors.

    The former inspectors who spoke to POLITICO also shadowed their colleagues on the job when they first started. The one main difference: They were required to pass through intensive training programs — mostly in person — that gave them specific knowledge of the products they were required to oversee. Some of those trainings were held in conjunction with CBER, the former inspectors said.

    Over the last several years, particularly since the pandemic began, the newer hires on Team Biologics have, on average, issued fewer Form 483s — documents that lay out specific findings during inspections such as instances where manufacturing staff improperly handled drug substances or a facility having unsanitary equipment, the former inspectors said.

    The number of inspections that occurred during the pandemic dropped off — a fact that could explain the lower rates of issuing 483s. But the former inspectors said the lower rates are also reflective of a far more serious and systematic issue on the team — that the inspectors may not know what to look for while on inspections. Harrison did not answer questions about how many 483s have been filed by the newer hires on Team Biologics.

    The FDA realignment in 2017 also paired inspectors who had been accustomed to working on inspections of manufacturers who used extremely technical, often difficult-to-master production concepts for products like vaccines, with supervisors who have never worked on biological drug inspections, the former inspectors said.

    Harrison did not answer questions about whether the supervisors of Team Biologics have experience inspecting facilities that produce the products the team is responsible for overseeing.

    “[They] … have a scientific educational background coupled with experience in inspectional techniques,” Harrison said.

    In his whistleblower report, former inspector Menachem called out his managers who decided to issue a less serious finding than he had suggested following his inspection at Merck in 2018 where he found the company was destroying evidence of possible violations, according to his whistleblower letter obtained by POLITICO. In the letter, he also said his managers declined his request for additional staff to help him with the inspection.

    U.S. Special Counsel Henry Kerner wrote about Menachem’s whistleblower complaint in a letter to President Joe Biden in March 2021, confirming that the downgrading of the finding compromised “compliance and safety efforts,” according to the letter.

    Menachem left the FDA in 2019. Since then, others have left Team Biologics, some to join the private sector where salaries are significantly higher than those offered at the FDA. In recent weeks, one of the supervisors on Team Biologics announced their departure.

    The FDA regularly publishes stats on its inspection backlog and has made progress this year, in part because in some instances, inspectors are conducting remote assessments and because many of the restrictions on in-person inspections imposed during the pandemic have been lifted.

  • 2 часа, 42 минуты назад 06.12.2022Health Care
    ‘Be vigilant’: Dr Hilary shares Strep A ‘red flag’ symptoms as ninth child dies

    The number of children who died from a severe Strep A infection has risen to nine since September. While invasive Streptococcus infection is rare, there has been an increase in invasive cases this year, particularly in children under 10. Doctor Hilary Jones has shared the “red flag” symptoms that can help distinguish Strep A from other conditions.

    Speaking on Good Morning Britain, Doctor Hilary said: “Right now, every parent will know children at their children’s school who got runny noses, sore throats, swollen glands, rashes – it’s very very common to have these symptoms.”

    Fortunately, the doctor explained how to tell the difference between Strep A and other problems, with sore throat playing a significant part.

    Doctor Hilary continued: “The best advice I can give is to be vigilant.

    “Look out for the red flag symptoms which are severe sore throat with exudations – white spots at the back of the tonsils.”

    The expert instructed parents to ask their children to open their mouths wide to check for these white spots. “Maybe use the end of the spoon to depress the tongue slightly,” he said.

    This will allow you to see white exudate on the tonsils at the back of your child’s throat.

    Doctor Hilary added: “Look for large glands in the front of the neck.

    “Fever is always going to occur with Strep A infection and sometimes this rash – scarlet fever rash – which is small red bumps that feel like sandpaper. They are brown on brown skin.”

    According to the NHS, the scarlet fever rash can appear 12 to 48 hours after the first signs like fever and sore throat crop up.

    The rash looks like small, raised bumps and usually starts on the chest and the tummy, leaving the skin feeling rough like sandpaper.

    While this tell-tale rash looks red on white skin, it’s harder to see it on brown and black skin but it can still be felt.

    The NHS recommends seeing a GP if your child has symptoms of scarlet fever. Doctor Hilary advised you should express your worries and list your child’s symptoms if you are struggling to get an appointment.

    He said: “Be assertive and say ‘Look I’m very worried about my child because I’m worried about this Streptococcus infection, my child’s got a fever’.

    “Explain what the symptoms are. [Say] ‘My child needs to be seen’.

    Fortunately, life-threatening versions of this bacterial infection remain very rare, despite the rise in deaths.

    Doctor Hilary added: “When you’re reading the papers about invasive strep A, we are talking about rare disease.

    “While it’s killed eight this season, we always see these kinds of complications every year.

    “We saw four deaths in 2017, fewer during the pandemic years, eight this year partly because immunity has gone down.

    “It’s very very unusual to see such serious illnesses – that’s really worth stressing.”

  • 4 часа, 42 минуты назад 06.12.2022Health Care
    ‘Anti-ageing’ and ‘anti-inflammatory’ – expert highlights health benefits of mulled wine

    Mulled wine is just one of many festive treats many people across the UK will be enjoying this winter. Combining a red wine base with spices such as cinnamon it’s both tasty and synonymous with Christmas. However, in moderation the beverage could have some unexpected health benefits too.

    One expert spoke with Express.co.uk to explain more.

    Nutritional therapist and co-founder of DNApal.me, Victoria Godfrey, explained: “One of the key ingredients to mulled wine is red wine.

    “It contains an antioxidant called resveratrol which comes from the red skin of a grape, it is known for aiding in blood clotting and its anti-inflammatory properties,

    “A 2017 study also found that resveratrol, a polyphenolic compound which is in red wine, may help to slow down the body’s ageing process and is equally good for the heart, along with helping keep the ‘good’ cholesterol or high-density lipoprotein in the blood.

    “Resveratrol also has antioxidants which can fight ageing and age-related diseases such as stroke, heart disease as well as also known for reducing the risk of cancer.

    “So, as you savour that glass of mulled wine, you may be giving your body some health benefits. “

    Ms Godfrey said the added ingredients of mulled wine, such as cinnamon and cloves, gave it “added benefits”.

    “Due to the wonderful array of ingredients in a mulled wine, the herbs and the spices all have various health benefits,” she said.

    “Some of the key ingredients to a mulled wine are whole cloves, cinnamon sticks, star anise, black peppercorns, allspice berries and dried orange peel.

    “The cinnamon in mulled wine has been shown to have a powerful anti-inflammatory effect, reducing swelling and restoring normal tissue function.

    “This may help conditions like arthritis. The antioxidants in red wine and in cloves can also help reduce inflammation.

    “Cloves were used in the good old days by dentists as a painkiller.

    “Having the cinnamon and cloves in a drink makes a compound called eugenol, which has local anaesthetic and antiseptic properties that can ease dull pains like toothache.

    “Also, the cinnamon sticks in mulled wine help to balance the blood sugars in the body, it can also help reduce swelling and stomach bloating as well as restoring normal tissue function.

    “A recent study showed that drinking one to three glasses of red wine a day may slim your risk of osteoporosis.

    “Those who drank that measure had greater bone mineral density than that of non-drinkers or heavy drinkers.”

    Ms Godfrey added: “This of course only works if you drink in moderation. Overall, red wine is alcohol, which we all know isn’t that good for us, when drinking over the recommended guidelines.

    “When drinking alcohol, the body converts it to a chemical called acetaldehyde which is a known carcinogen.

    “Your liver still must process it, so may be wise to stick to a glass of water with lemon between each mulled wine, or an herbal tea like dandelion tea, detox while you retox.

    “Although there may be some pleasant upsides to the festive beverage, do drink responsibly.”

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Health Care Three 'common' sensations in 'upper limbs' that can signal blood clot - can ‘impact sleep'