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Health news and events for November and December


November 18

Emirates Kids Marathon

Sign up your children for the Emirates Kids Marathon, which aims to prevent obesity by inspiring kids to get involved in physical activities for a lifetime of healthy living. The event includes races of various lengths as well as fun activities such as face-painting, competitions and more. It’s open to those between the ages of 5 and 13, and will be held at Al Mamzar Park, Dubai, from 2pm to 9pm. Register at www.emirateskidsmarathon.com.

November 18-19

YogaFest Middle East

This annual event features classes by Dechen Thurman, who is actress Uma Thurman’s brother, plus cooking demonstrations, Arabic classes, body art and more than 150 talks, workshops, concerts, shopping and more. Donations will support the Dubai Foundation for Women and Children. The event will be held at Dubai Media City Amphitheatre each day from 7am to 7pm. Search for “Yogafest 2016” at www.eventbrite.com.

November 24


Run the stairs at TrainZSC and enjoy a vertical training session in the cooler weather at the National Stadium at Zayed Sports City, Abu Dhabi, in this initiative by Daman’s Activelife. Challenge yourself to the 884-stair course, or run or walk around the pitch. Children can enjoy the inflatable play area, and Daman will also offer free health checks. The event runs from 6pm to 9pm, and is free by registering online at www.trainzsc.com.

November 25

The Unity Run

Take part in this celebratory 3-kilometre run and 7km walk to raise money for Al Noor Training Centre for Persons With Disabilities, and raise awareness for those with special needs. Athletes of all ages – able-bodied and disabled – will participate together. The event will be held at Al Mamzar Beach, Dubai, from 10am. Visit www.theunityrun.com for more information.

December 1-3

Journey of Hope

Cycle through all seven emirates and see some of the UAE’s most iconic sights on the Journey of Hope. Cyclists of all abilities can take part in the three-day road event that raises money for patients requiring emergency surgery and is sanctioned by the UAE Cycling Federation in association with Emirates Red Crescent. The event starts in Fujairah at 6am on day one; goes from Ras Al Khaimah to Sharjah on day two; and Dubai to Abu Dhabi on day three. For more details or to register, visit www.premieronline.com.

December 2

UAE Solidarity Walk

Be part of the 3km UAE Solidarity Walk, on UAE National Day, and celebrate the country’s 45th birthday with a fun community event, where you can enjoy the fresh air and festivities with family and friends. The event will be held from 8am at the Mamzar Beach Tracks in Dubai. For more details or to register, visit www.premieronline.com.

December 2

Yas Mall Family Walkathon

Bring the family to Yas Mall for the Family Walkathon and enjoy a 10km walk inside the mall to celebrate a healthy community and UAE National Day. Dress in the colours of the UAE flag, but be sure to dress in practical sportswear for comfort and physical activity. The event will be held from 8am at Town Square, Yas Mall, Yas Island. For more details or to register, visit www.yasmall.ae.


Fallouts of vitamin B12 deficiency

Children born to mothers who have vitamin B12 deficiency during pregnancy may be more likely to develop metabolic problems such as type 2 diabetes, researchers at the University of Warwick’s Warwick Medical School have discovered.

B12 is naturally found in animal products, including fish, meat, eggs and milk, and those deficient in the vitamin are more likely to be following a vegan diet.

The researchers found that maternal B12 deficiency may lead to high levels of the hormone leptin, which tells us whether we are full after eating, in children.

“The nutritional environment provided by the mother can permanently programme the baby’s health,” said Dr Ponnusamy Saravanan, senior author of the study, which was presented at the Society for Endocrinology’s annual conference in Brighton earlier this month. “We know that children born to under- or over-nourished mothers are at an increased risk of health problems, such as type 2 diabetes, and we also see that maternal B12 deficiency may affect fat metabolism and contribute to this risk.”

Are you addicted to social media?

Ever wondered if you’re addicted to social media? James Roberts, smartphone-addiction researcher and professor of marketing at Baylor University’s Hankamer School of Business in Texas, says there are six questions people can ask themselves to determine whether they spend too much time on social media. The questions are based on the core components of substance and behavioural addictions.

1. Salience: Is your social-media use deeply integrated into your daily life?

2. Euphoria: Do you depend on social-media use for excitement throughout the day?

3. Tolerance: Do you need to spend more time to get a “buzz” from social media?

4. Withdrawal symptoms: Do you get nervous when you are not on social media?

5. Conflict: Does your use of social media cause you trouble?

6. Relapse: Have you tried to cut back on your use of social media, but failed?

“If you’ve answered ‘yes’ to three or more of these questions, you might need to reconsider your use of social media,” Roberts says.

With input from Amanda Tomlinson

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