Fuel your run with a fruit

Q I run for an hour every morning. I usually fuel myself with a sports drink.

By YOUR HEALTH - Dr Gita Mathai
  • Published 22.08.18

I run for an hour every morning. I usually fuel myself with a sports drink.

You are expending approximately 300-600 calories with an hour of running. The total depends on your weight, speed and distance covered. You need to check the calories in the sports drink if you are trying to lose weight. Also, the drink contains preservatives and other chemicals. Do you really want to take these on a regular basis?

Recent studies have shown that bananas contain calories, antioxidants and electrolytes like potassium. Combined with a small cup of coffee, they may be a more efficient and natural way to fuel your run.

Cough cure

I have been coughing for the last 10 days. I had a course of antibiotics and various cough mixtures, but nothing seems to work.

A cough may be due to allergies, viral or bacterial infections, asthma, eosinophilia or diseases causing fluid overload in the body. Antibiotics work only against bacteria, so buying over-the-counter antibiotics and self-medicating is harmful. You need to check to see if you have any of these conditions. Any particular cough mixture is not better or more effective than the next brand. The ones that contain antihistamines will make you drowsy. The ones that contain codeine or its derivatives are likely to become addictive. Frequent steam inhalations and honey in hot water are often equally effective.

Balance lost

I am 36 years old and feel I have no balance. When I walk, it feels like I will fall down on my face anytime though I haven't actually fallen yet. I had an ENT and a neurological evaluation but the doctors did not find anything wrong. I have anaemia and my haemoglobin value is 10 gm/dL.

You need to check if you have macrocytic anaemia. This is caused by a Vitamin B12 and folic acid deficiency, which causes malfunction of the peripheral nerves. Supplements can correct neuropathy and, probably, your sensation of falling forwards. Your physician can help you.