Asarah B'Tevet (Tevet 10) fast is tomorrow the 25th (except for those over 60 years old and in poor health) Is heart rate inversely proportional to life expectancy? and remembering Andy Griffith and Orthodox woman removed from flight after praying in her seat and Holocaust victims finally get Jewish burial, 75 years later
Yehuda Lave is an author, journalist, psychologist, rabbi, spiritual teacher, and coach, with degrees in business, psychology and Jewish Law. He works with people from all walks of life and helps them in their search for greater happiness, meaning, business advice on saving money, and spiritual engagement.
Asarah B'Tevet (Tevet 10) fast is tomorrow the 25th (except for those over 60 years old and in poor health). As for the other Rabbinic fasts, Covid has threatened those over 60 and those in poor health more, so many thoughtful Rabbis have said those in poor health and those over 60 put themselves at more risk by fasting, so don't.
Jerusalem Under Siege
On Asarah B'Tevet, the 10th day of the Jewish month of Tevet, in the year 3336 from Creation (425 BCE), the armies of the Babylonian emperor Nebuchadnezzar laid siege to Jerusalem. Asarah B'Tevet (this year, December 25, 2020) is observed as a day of fasting, mourning and repentance.
On Asarah B'Tevet, the 10th day of the Jewish month of Tevet, in the year 3336 from Creation (425 BCE), the armies of the Babylonian emperor Nebuchadnezzar laid siege to Jerusalem. Thirty months later—on 9 Tammuz 3338—the city walls were breached, and on 9 Av of that year the Holy Temple was destroyed. The Jewish people were exiled to Babylonia for 70 years.
Asarah B'Tevet (this year, December 25, 2020) is observed as a day of fasting, mourning, and repentance. We refrain from food and drink from daybreak to nightfall, and add selichot and other special supplements to our prayers. The fast ends at nightfall or as soon as you see three medium-sized stars in the sky. Read more about Asarah B'Tevet
The Three Musketeers at the Kotel
Orthodox woman removed from flight after praying in seat
By World Israel News Staff
According to a report by Yeshiva World News (YWN), a mask wearing Orthodox Jewish woman was removed from a flight for praying in her seat.
The passenger, who requested anonymity, told YWN that she was "100% compliant" with mask requirements and blamed the incident on "blatant anti-Semitism."
"I was on Delta Flight 5610 from Chicago O'Hare to JFK Airport on Wednesday," she told YWN. "I had my [prayer book] open and was praying."
She continued, "The flight attendant … angrily pushed my siddur down and told me to pull up my mask to comply with guidelines. My mask was up but she walked away without allowing me to show her. I brushed it off assuming she didn't see me correctly."
The passenger said that the flight attendant returned with a colleague and they "they both got extremely angry."
"They knocked my [prayer book] and told me I wasn't being compliant, even though the other passengers could see I was fully compliant, and just praying," she added.
The passenger said she asked for the flight attendant's name, after which the pilot announced the plane was returning to the gate to drop off a non-compliant individual.
Back at the gate, the passenger was reportedly told she could either get off the plane or face a lifetime ban from Delta Airlines.
The reason given was that the "other passengers do not feel safe and the pilot did not feel comfortable having [the passenger] on board."
According to the passenger, she was holding her prayer book the entire time and the flight attendant told her, "You and your prayer book can get off."
As of press time, YWN said it received no response from Delta regarding the allegations.
Perfect for the after Chanukah blues
Holocaust victims finally get Jewish burial, 75 years later
Seventy-five years after the end of the Holocaust, some victims of the genocide were finally laid to rest in a local Jewish cemetery.
Daniel Bouknight discovered the ashes of Holocaust victims in a small cardboard box he found among his grandfather's belongings.
Inside the box read the message: "These ashes were taken from the crematory at Dachau, Germany on 11 Feb.1945. Prisoners were burned in the oven that these ashes were taken from, small portions of bones remains."
After consulting with Chabad Rabbi Hesh Epstein, the two decided the best course of action would be to inter the ashes in a local Jewish cemetery.
On Sunday, crowds gathered at the Columbia Jewish cemetery at Arcadia Lakes to lay rest to the Holocaust victims. "Your death was not in vain," Rabbi Epstein said at the ceremony. "We have gathered here today to honor your memory along with your 6 million brothers and sisters." [WACH]
A Face in the Crowdis a 1957 American drama filmstarring Andy Griffith(in his film debut), Patricia Nealand Walter Matthau, directed by Elia Kazan. The screenplay is by Budd Schulbergand is based on his short story "Your Arkansas Traveler", from the collection Some Faces in the Crowd(1953). The story centers on Larry "Lonesome" Rhodes, a drifter who is discovered by the producer (Neal) of a small-market radio program in rural northeast Arkansas. Rhodes ultimately rises to great fame and influence on national television. The character was inspired by Schulberg's acquaintance with Will Rogers Jr.The successes of Arthur Godfreyand Tennessee Ernie Fordwere also acknowledged in the screenplay
The film launched Griffith into stardom but got mixed reviews upon its original release. Later decades have seen favorable reappraisals of the movie, and in 2008 it was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registryby the Library of Congressas "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".
"MOMMA GUITAR"--SPOILER ALERT-- VERY LOUD, 4 min 34 sec b/w Lee Remick,Tony Franciosa, Andy Griffith, A FACE IN THE CROWD
In various epidemiologic studies, cardiovascular and all-cause mortality in healthy individuals has been directly related to heart rate, beginning with rates exceeding 55 bpm. The relationship between heart rate and mortality persists even after adjustment for various prognostic factors. From Boudoulas K.D. et al, Heart Rate, Life Expectancy and the Cardiovascular System: Therapeutic Considerations, Cardiology 2015;132:199-212:
a. In healthy subjects, a resting heart rate >75 bpm means an almost 2-fold increase in relative risk for death from any cause and a 3.5-increase in relative risk for sudden death from myocardial infarction compared to individuals with a resting heart rate <60 bpm.
b. When adjusted for various prognostic factors (age, physical activity, fitness, maximal myocardial oxygen consumption (MVO2max), leisure time, tobacco consumption, alcohol intake, body mass index, systolic/diastolic pressure, serum cholesterol and triglycerides), a higher resting heart rate is still associated with a higher relative risk for sudden death from myocardial infarction, albeit less pronounced.
A faster heart rate usually means a higher metabolic rate. A high metabolic rate leads to the development of free radicals, oxidative stress and faster aging. Traditionally, the "rate of living theory" has attributed differences in life expectancy of living organisms to their different metabolic rates.
As the size of an animal increases, although the animal requires more energy, the metabolic rate does not increase proportionally to the increase in body weight. Generally, in animals (and particularly in homeotherms) the rate of heat loss is a function of body surface area, while heat production is a function of body mass (weight). However, for a 2-fold (i.e. 100%) increase in body mass, body surface area only increases by approximately 59%. A less pronounced increase in body surface area also means a less pronounced increase in heat loss. A smaller portion of the metabolic rate needs to be spent on compensation for heat loss, so larger animals can afford a slower metabolic rate.
However, metabolic rate does not fully explain differences in life expectancy. Birds have a greater metabolic rate than mammals of similar size, but they live much longer. The oxidative stress that accelerates aging is also related to the lipid composition of the organism's cell membranes. A high concentration of polyunsaturated fatty acids in the cell membrane is associated with high oxidative stress and faster aging ("membrane composition theory", complementary to the "rate of living theory").
Let's look at animals of the same species in different stages of development: Human babies have a higher heart rate, because they need to compensate for a greater relative heat loss per body mass. However, their cardiovascular system is adapted to this special need, by having a lower blood pressure, a higher respiratory rate and more efficient mechanisms that eliminate free radicals, so their cell membranes are healthier. Therefore, it would be absurd to claim that babies had a worse life expectancy than adults.
There is however some truth in the observation that body size seems to be inversely correlated with longevity when comparing animals of the same species and at the same developmental stage. Bigger dog breeds age more quickly than smaller ones and they die sooner on average. Researchers in Göttingen, Germany analysed data on age of death in over 56,000 dogs from 74 different breeds and found that, for every increase of 2 kg in body weight, a dog's lifespan is decreased by 1 month in average. This seems to be because they grow faster, which leads to earlier incidence of tumours and other abnormal tissue developments. Therefore, the "rate of living theory" needs also to take into account how quickly animals develop their adult size, a good approximation of which is the age at which the average animal reaches sexual maturity (in blue whales, this is at 5-10 years of age, in mice it's 50 days).
Even when accounting for developmental stage and body size in adult humans, a slower average heart rate continues to be associated with longevity. In order to understand why, we have to look at how the heart rate comes to be what it is and how this influences the rest of the body.
The heart rate of individuals with normal rhythm (sinus rhythm) is regulated by the sinus node, the heart's physiological pacemaker, which depolarises spontaneously due to the function of its special potassium and calcium channels. Many factors directly or indirectly affect sinus node rate, such as autonomic nervous system activity, metabolic rate and inflammatory processes.
Increase in heart rate will result in a decrease in diastolic time and an increase in systolic time (with the increase in systolic time being proportionally less than the decrease in diastolic time).
The heart muscle is perfused mainly during the diastole (because when it contracts during systole, the lumen of the small vessels is pressed together). The lower the ratio of average diastolic time to average systolic time, the less the perfusion, which in the long run may result in myocardial damage, left ventricular hypertrophy and heart failure. Increased heart rate seems also to be associated with endothelial damage, oxidative stress, inflammation and stiff vessels, all of which contribute to arterial hypertension, the development of atherosclerosis and aging.
At present, there is not enough information to justify treating individuals who have sinus tachycardia without evidence of underlying disease in order to slow the heart rate. It is reasonable, however, to instruct otherwise healthy individuals with a fast heart rate to:
avoid stimulants such as caffeine, smoking or alcohol
maintain a normal body weight
Equally important (if not more) to the average heart rate is the so called heart rate variation (HRV), the variation in the time intervals between two random beats.
In a normal, healthy heart the intervals are not constant. They differ from beat to beat as a response to the input of the vagal nerve. The vagal tone itself is influenced among other things by input from the prefrontal cortex (the "thinking part" of the brain) to the medulla oblongata, the part of the brain stem also responsible for respiratory rate, circadian rhythm, etc.
Physical exercise and psychological stress both lead to a decreased HRV as long as the exercise/ the stress persists. What is physiological during physical exercise, becomes pathological during chronic stress. A higher average HRV indicates better general health, whereas a reduced HRV is associated with numerous pathological conditions such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, inflammation, obesity and psychiatric disorders. The same pathological conditions are also associated with chronically elevated levels of inflammation markers in the blood. C-reactive protein (CRP) is a typical inflammation marker, which is chronically elevated in cases of reduced HRV.
Lower is not always better, of course. A patient with a rhythm disorder who used to have a normal heart rate of 60 bpm in sinus rhythm and now has a heart rate of 30 bpm under complete AV-block does not have a better life expectancy. Unless the rhythm disorder is treated, he/she may very soon succumb to heart failure. An old patient with a sick sinus syndrome who used to have a normal heart rate of 55 bpm and now has intermittently pauses of several seconds may lose consciousness and injure themselves badly because of severe bradycardia. Therefore, it is important to bear in mind that the inverse correlation between heart rate and longevity is only valid within the normal range for heart rate. A marathon runner who has trained to have a resting heart rate of 45 bpm has a different normal range of heart rate than his older mother who never trained.
To sum up:
A higher average heart rate tends to mean a slightly lower life expectancy, all other things being equal. Healthy diet and physical exercise (and/ or bradycardic medication in patients with cardiovascular disease) may help you reverse the trend!