JEE rank not good? Relax, here’s how you can still get into a great institute

There is a reason the JEE is considered one of the toughest examinations in India, if not the world. The difficulty level of the papers in the exam is not the only reason though. The sheer competitiveness of the exam, owing to a massive number of applicants, is also a factor. When you look at the numbers, you realise how. Over 1.2 million applicants gave JEE Main; the first phase of this really tough exam. Just 2.2 lakh applicants qualified for the next exam – JEE Advanced. That’s a qualifying rate of 18%, roughly equating to 1 in 6 candidates.

Now consider another fact. IITs in India – that take in students qualifying this exam only have a total of a little over 10,500 seats. The qualifying rate is now further reduced to 5%, roughly equating to 1 in 20 students. To put this in perspective, only the top 1% of all applicants actually make it to the IITs.

It’s no wonder why engineering aspirants were eagerly waiting for June 11, 2017. Many of them did it though with a sense of nervousness and apprehension. And when the moment of reckoning did arrive, it filled many hearts with joy while breaking countless more.

According to Rajshekhar Ratrey, VP educational content,, an educational learning platform, candidates with an insufficient AIR (all-India rank) should not lose hope as IITs are not the only way to achieve one’s dreams. Kishore Vaigyanik Protsahan Yojana (KVPY, a scholarship programme funded by the department of science and technology) scores and Olympiad (such as the one conducted by IIT Bombay) count too. Success is a journey and not a milestone. There is more than one way to travel this journey. If candidates haven’t managed to make it to the IITs, here’s Ratrey’s advice on some alternatives they can consider:


Not just IIT,s here are some other institutes you can opt for

1.NITs: Candidates can pursue a career in computer science, electronics, mechanical or chemical engineering in the National Institutes of Technology. Older colleges like Warangal, Trichy and Suratkal are better than some of the newer colleges. Regardless, all NITs will consider JEE Main scores and AIR for admissions.

2.IIITs: Candidates can pursue a career in electronics or computer science in the Indian Institutes of Information Technology. All IIIT colleges consider JEE Main scores with AIR, KVPY and Olympiad scores for admissions. Of them, Hyderabad, Bengaluru and Ahmedabad are some of the good ones to aim for.

3.IIST: If it’s a career in space technology that one seeks, then the Indian Institute of Space Technology is a great choice. Directly managed by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), candidates can directly apply for the five-year dual-degree programme with masters, that bolsters their chances of entering ISRO. IIST considers a candidate’s JEE Advanced Score and AIR for admissions.

4.IISc: The Indian Institute of Science, also known as the Tata Institute, is another great option for those contemplating a career in pure sciences and research. These courses are also highly beneficial for those who wish to pursue higher studies. Located in Bengaluru, this institute assesses a candidate’s JEE Main, JEE Advanced, KVPY and Olympiad scores; depending on how many exams the candidate has given.

5.IISER: Another great option for pure sciences and research is the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research in Pune. This institution has published 900 research papers and helps candidates aspiring for a PhD. IISER assesses the JEE Advanced score, state-board percentage of each candidate. If the candidate has given the KVPY exam, its score is considered too.

6.State-funded Institutes: If candidates are unable to get into any of the above national institutions, there are various state institutions that they can apply for.

After completing one of the above courses, candidates can choose to opt for higher studies:


1. IIT and IISER: Candidates get a second shot at IIT which offers an integrated MS + PhD course. They can alternatively choose to pursue this course at IISER.

2. GATE Exam: Candidates can choose to give the Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering for admission to postgraduate programmes at IITs, NITs and various other state-funded engineering colleges.


1. M.S: Candidates can pursue their masters from an overseas university. Admissions are granted on the basis of their academic performance and a language test like IELTS or TOEFL. Universities in USA also require GRE and GMAT.

2. Ph.D: Candidates can also choose to pursue a PhD over a master’s degree.

3. Integrated courses (MS + PhD): Candidates can instead of for integrated courses that combine both of the above, at overseas universities.


How to jump-rope like a pro to lose the flab

Want to get into shape and lose the unwanted flab? Grab the jump rope. Skipping is being called the ultimate high-intensity exercise regimen. A full-body workout that starts with the wrists, it uses the legs, hands, shoulders and abs to leave you healthy and toned. Skipping also increases bone density and builds alertness. Folks are increasingly taking to this workout that you can do just about anywhere. Short bursts of high intensity exercise are said to wake up the body and it’s no wonder that celebrities such as Padma Lakshmi, Kate Hudson, Megan Fox and Justin Bieber are all said to be fans of skipping.
Here are a few rules to follow when using the jump rope…

1) Choose the right rope:
Size matters here, because if the rope is too short you may hit your shins. To know what works, step on the rope and extend the handles upwards. If they touch the armpits , it’s a comfortable size.
2) The turf: Jumping on the wrong surface can impact the knees adversely. Avoid cement as that is too hard. Instead, jump on grass or another soft flooring.
3) Your clothes: Remember, when skipping, the rope might hit your outfit, so avoid hoodies with long ropes. Stick to a T-shirt and fitted tracks.

4) Warm up: This is a strenuous activity, so work out before you jump rope.
5) Start gradually: New to this? Begin with a one-foot bounce and then go to a two-foot one. In a single bounce, you should be jumping only ½ an inch off the ground.
6) Your form: Never jump flat-footed, but land on the balls of your feet. Also, while jumping do not let your feet touch the ground.

Jumping rope for 10 minutes = Running one mile

AYUSH Diets Claim to Heal All But How Easy Are They to Follow?

New York: On this International Day of Yoga (IDY), India’s 69.2 million diabetics might consider waking up to a spoonful of methi seeds soaked overnight on an empty stomach, followed by with meals of salads fresh fruits, multigrain rotis and brown rice gruels.

This is part of the ideal sattvic diet for diabetics, according to the Central Council for Research in Yoga and Naturopathy (CCRYN), a body of the Ministry of AYUSH, most recently in the news for advising pregnant women to “detach themselves from desire, anger, attachment, hatredness [sic] and lust”.

Image result for AYUSH Diets Claim to Heal All But How Easy Are They to Follow?

The pamphlet on Mother and Child Care, distributed by AYUSH minister Shripad Yesso Naik, in the run up to the IDY, is scarcely the only document advising lifestyle and dietary practices. The aforementioned diet is part of a similar booklet on the benefits of yoga and naturopathy on diabetes, one of India’s most prevalent non-communicable disease (NCD). Dr. Ishwara Acharya, president of the CCRYN told News18 that these practices could rid India of NCDs.

Much of this advice, however, is treated warily by nutritionists.

“AYUSH diets endorse ‘sattvic’ philosophy, which is fine, but does not mean that people who have been consuming non-vegetarian foods are not eating healthy. In fact, several nutrients are only found in non-vegetarian foods like long chain omega 3 fats, vitamin B12 etc,” said Dr. Shweta Khandelwal, nutritionist and associate professor, Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI).

Nor is the humble egg, disdained by the sattvic diet, easily substituted. Khandelwal did the math. One egg has the biological value (BV) — the unit for measuring how much protein a food source provides the body — of 100. One whole egg makes available 6 gram of protein for the body. Thus eggs are an excellent source of protein. However, she explained, many of the vegetarian sources of protein have a low BV. Thus one has to consume about three to four bowls (200-250 ml each) of dal to get as much bioavailable protein.

Protein requirements are still easier to achieve with a vegetarian diet for an adult, said Purnima Menon, senior fellow at the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI); the trouble would be with iron, zinc and calcium. In a country with widespread anemia among girls and women, which affects lifelong health and makes pregnancy more dangerous, iron is hard to ignore.

According to Acharya, naturopathic diets could correct menstrual cycles from puberty on, perhaps stopping the loss of iron from excess bleeding. He was careful to add that the CCRYN was not asking anyone to stop taking supplements, even though naturopathy is a drugless system.

However, iron has limited vegetarian sources — certain leafy vegetables or lentils — Menon said. These are either expensive or not readily available.

The latest antenatal guidelines by the World Health Organisation recommend “consumption of a variety of foods, including green and orange vegetables, meat, fish, beans, nuts, whole grains and fruit” for healthy pregnancies.

Even if an AYUSH prescribed diet fulfills one’s nutritional needs, it trips over accessibility and affordability, as pointed out by both Khandelwal and Menon.

Seasonal fruits, prescribed for diabetics, are often priced too highly for urban poor to afford, who have now become increasingly vulnerable to diabetes according to the ongoing diabetes survey of the Indian Council of Medical Research. As are the dry fruits to be consumed by pregnant women.

“Consuming a balanced and nutritious diet is a problem across all classes and sectors,” said Khandelwal, adding “With the rise in working populations and erratic lifestyles we all often fall prey to cheap, ready-to-eat options, which are mostly empty calories laden with trans fats.”

However, the minutely detailed AYUSH diets are more suited to those either leading a life of leisure or who have enough help at home with the amount of preparation required.

Menon, who works at the Health and Nutrition Division at IFPRI, said the prescribed diet, at least for pregnant and lactating women would take significant efforts in terms of time and resources. “It takes time to procure and process, things like alfalfa and sprouts,” said Menon, “and many pregnant women do not have the time, the access or the support.” For many women, it will be hard to adhere to fruits and sprouts at 7am, whole wheat rotis at 11am and juices at 3pm.

Recently having completed a study on nutrition and behavioural changes in pregnant women in Bangladesh, Menon called it impractical to expect women to make drastic changes in their diet at the moment of pregnancy. Acharya may call naturopathy a change of lifestyle. However, “changes, and recommendations on what changes to make, to add those extra 350 to 400 calories and other nutrients to a pregnant woman’s diet, have to be incremental and contextual,” said Menon. People form habits by eating multiple times a day, every day. One cannot expect women from coastal communities to suddenly stop eating fish, a ready source of protein. In India, diverse socio-agricultural diversity, a daily family diet in Kerala would be very different from Gujarat or from any other state, she said.





How changing weather affects our sleep

The change in weather doesn’t only influence environmental conditions but has a great impact on our sleeping pattern too. As our body prepares to fall asleep, the internal temperature dips and stays on a lower side for a few hours before we wake up. Let’s discuss how different weather conditions impact our sleeping pattern.

How hot and humid weather affects our sleep?

Hot and sticky weather prevents our body from getting a deep sleep. The humidity in the atmosphere impacts the hormones required for a sound sleep. Excess heat and humid weather make it difficult to evaporate moisture from the body, making us feel hot and uncomfortable while sleeping.

This is not the only issue in hot and humid weather. High humidity can also encourage mould growth, which may affect our sleeping patterns if we get infected from mould allergies.

A few tips…

Keep your room well ventilated.

Avoid eating close to bedtime as this may impact digestion and increases body temperature.

Wear loose clothes and prefer lightweight and natural fibre linen for sleeping.

How cold weather impacts our sleeping pattern?

Studies suggest that cold weather supports the body’s natural sleeping process. As the ideal room temperature for sleeping is between 15 to 22 degree celsius, cold weather helps in maintaining this optimal room temperature. But if the temperature gets too low or above this range it can cause restlessness.

Some tips…

In winter, taking a bath with lukewarm water, one or two hours before sleeping helps in maintaining ideal body temperature required for sleep.

If the weather is too cold, extra layers of quilts can help in getting a sound sleep.

Do you know weather changes can be painful!

The weather conditions like temperature and humidity can trigger chronic pain. People with joint and body pain are more vulnerable to changing climatic changes. Their sleep gets disturbed and may make their condition worse.

According to a study at Tufts University and a Dutch study, cold weather and increased atmospheric pressure are also related to arthritis pain.

Decreased atmospheric pressure, extreme temperatures and humidity are associated with increased migraines issues.

The triggered illnesses and pains contribute to disturbed sleeping patterns.

How tobacco causes genetic changes

It’s a known fact that tobacco causes cancer. But there are few researches across the globe to explain this link a gap that has been exploited by the industry lobby to argue against a ban on tobacco-related products.

But in a big breakthrough, Indian scientists have established the genetic changes caused by tobacco consumption that lead to cancer. It is based on a gene study of 383 patients suffering from cancer of the head and neck and undergoing treatment at AIIMS and 383 healthy people.
<p>How tobacco causes genetic changes<br></p>
Doctors found 93% of the patients were tobacco users, and polymorphism of HLA-G – an immunomodulatory molecule with the ability to inhibit immune cell function -was much higher in them compared to healthy individuals. The team of researchers from AIIMS included Dr Vertica Agnihotri, Dr Sharmishta Dey and Dr Lalit Kumar, among others.

The study stated that cancer of the head and neck was common among Indian men and it was caused mostly due to tobacco consumption.

Dr Agnihotri said tobacco smoke contained more than 50 potent carcinogens, including tobacco-specific nicotine.

“These chemicals can affect DNA damage processes by providing a strong free radical generating environment, which could lead to genetic alterations of DNA,” she added.

On World No Tobacco Day on Wednesday, Union health minister J P Nadda and director general of health services Jagdish Prasad flagged off a ceremony for mass awareness about ill-effects of tobacco consumption.

The World Health Organisation, on its part, is calling on countries to prioritise and accelerate tobacco control efforts as part of their responses to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.



Here’s how you can prevent your child from wetting the bed

 Children who wet the bed are often ridiculed. Many-a-times, night-time bedwettingcontinue in children even after the age of five years, posing a problem for the child as well as his parents. In such children, the ability to hold urine is diminished or under-developed, and this could be due to a variety of reasons.
Dr Vivek Rege says that parents usually take cold, cough, and fever in their children very seriously but not bedwetting, which is also a very critical problem. “Close to 15 percent under-five children in Mumbai suffer from this problem. If the problem persists even when they have crossed the 5-year age bar, expert guidance is a must,” he said.
Here’s how you can prevent your child from wetting the bed (Thinkstock photos/Getty Images)

Many studies are underway to understanding why children wet the bed. In many children, the ability to control their bladder is limited. This could be due to hormonal imbalances, particularly related with the Antidiuretic Hormone (ADH). The treatment to bedwetting primarily involves identifying the cause of bedwetting and advising medication for it along with suggesting lifestyle modifications for the child. Many studies are also in progress in trying to establish a link between social media and virtual networking to bedwetting; while, some have tried to establish a connection between violence and bedwetting.

However, a few lifestyle changes for the child can help him a great deal to stop wetting the bed. What follows are a few tips given by Dr Vivek.

– You should never scold your child if he wets the bed. This is a problem he has no voluntary control of and hence, he should not be chided for it.

– The days when he does not wet the bed, appreciate it. Make him feel your support.

– Make sure that your child urinates just before he goes to the bed.

– At least two hours before going to the bed, your kid must be given hot beverages like warm milk.

– You must never give beverages like tea, coffee or cola to your kid before going to the bed.

– Children wet the bed because their sleep remains unhindered by the urge and they cannot wake up in the middle of the night to pee. In such cases, you can set an alarm and wake him up to pee.

– Bedwetting can be a problem in air-conditioned rooms during summer. Make sure that your kid does not feel too cold during the night.

– If your child wets the bed at least two to three times in a week, it is really paramount that you take the advice of a doctor as his frequency of bedwetting is on the higher side.



NEET 2017: Stage set for CBSE to declare results, know how to check

The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) is all set to declare the results of the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET), which was taken by 12 lakh students aspiring to join medical and dental colleges across the country.

The process of declaring the result was set in motion after the Supreme Court on June 12 gave a go-ahead to the board by staying a May 24 interim order of the Madras high court, which restrained it from publishing the result.

The top court said it was inclined to grant a stay on the high court’s order, which was indirectly “diluting” the schedule for NEET-2017 earlier fixed by the apex court.

CBSE NEET results

A vacation bench comprising justice PC Pant and justice Deepak Gupta directed the authorities to proceed with the process of announcing the results, subsequent counselling and admission as per the schedule fixed by the apex court.

However, the bench said the result declaration, as well as the subsequent counselling and admission through NEET 2017, would be subject to the decision of the apex court in the matter pending before it. It also asked the high courts not to entertain pleas in the matters relating to NEET 2017.

The bench posted the matter for hearings after the summer vacation.

The CBSE moved the Supreme Court on June 9 seeking an immediate stay of the Madras high court order. The board also sought the transfer of petitions on NEET 2017 from various high courts to the apex court.

The petitioners demanded before the high court that NEET 2017 should be cancelled and a fresh exam with a uniform question paper be conducted. They claimed that different sets of question papers were used at various places, though a common syllabus had been announced.

The school board released the answer keys of the examination on June 15 and candidates were given time until 5pm on June 16 to challenge the keys. On June 13, CBSE displayed the images of OMR answer sheets and responses to the questions marked by candidates who appeared in the exam.

According to the schedule of the exam, the CBSE was expected to declare the results on June 8.

Candidates can check their results on after they are declared.

Steps to check the results:

1) Go on

1) Click on link for NEET 2017 results to visit the login page

2) Enter required details

4) Result will be displayed on the screen

5) Take a printout and download it on your computer for future reference


How to Get Rid of Bags Under Your Eyes

When the normal fat that helps support the eyes moves into the lower eyelids, it causes the lids to appear puffy. Additionally, fluid can accumulate in the area below your eyes which can cause them to swell up. In most cases, puffy and droopy eyes could be a sign of tiredness or lack of sleep. Unless it is a medical condition, you can help yourself get rid of bags under your eyes. From eliminating certain bad habits to incorporating natural home remedies, here are few things that can help.

How to Get Rid of Bags Under Your Eyes

1. Take it easy on salt

Salt is not only linked to high blood pressure

, but it can also cause fluid retention which can lead to puffiness around the eyes. If you use salt, it is better to opt for pure Himalayan pink salt or sea salt

in minimum quantities. Avoid salty processed foods. You can even opt for fresh vegetables, in particular celery, which can help curb your desire for salt.


2. Exercise

Exercising is a solution for almost all problems from weight loss to getting rid of the eye bags. It is a natural way to reduce the signs of aging and can promote youthful glow. Yoga poses such as shoulder stands and back bends can help increase circulation to the face, eliminate excess fluid and relieve swelling.


3. Use cucumbers

Cucumbers have a cooling effect on the eyes. Refrigerate two slices of cucumbers for 10-15 minutes and then apply them over your eyes. Keep them placed for about 30 minutes. The soothing effect of cucumbers will help refresh your eyes and your mind.

superfoods cucumber vegetablesPhoto Credit: twitter/daolabs

4. Limit alcohol intake

Alcohol dehydrates your body and skin which can cause the delicate area around your eyes to appear sunken and dark. Also, alcohol can lead to bloodshot and tired eyes. Limit your alcohol intake and up your water intake. The skin around your eyes will glow when your body is well-hydrated.

alcohol 620


5. Essential oils

As you age, dehydration becomes common. Due to lack of collagen, moisturizing becomes necessary. Applying fennel, lavender or rosemary essential oils can help lower inflammation and regenerate the skin around the eyes. Be careful not to apply these oils on the eye lids or inside the eye, gently rub just a little bit on the eye bags and leave it on for 20 minutes and then wash off. Applying aloe vera is another home remedy to get rid of eye bags.

essential oils

6. Tea bags

Using tea bags soaked in chamomile tea is also a very effective home remedy for eye bags. It helps in draining out all the excess fluid. Moisten the tea bags and then chill them in the refrigerator. Use them later to cover your eyes and relax for 15-20 minutes.

chamomile tea

7. Milk

Milk is a great remedy for most of your skin care problems. Dip two cotton pads in milk and chill them for few minutes. Later, place these chilled milk-soaked cotton pads over your eyes and let them rest for 30 minutes. Your eyes will feel relaxed and rejuvenated.

Try these remedies at home and feel the difference. Your eyes are beautiful assets yet very sensitive and delicate which require extra care. If you feel any product or ingredient irritates your eyes, stop using it immediately and wash with cold water.


Here’s how you can match jewellery with Indo-western outfits

A simple pendent, danglers or elaborate round neckpiece — it is important to know what accessory to pick for the Indo-western look to get the fashion statement right, say experts.

Pankaj Anand and Anil Arora, Founders, Sabhyata and Swapnil Eaga, co-founder, Zinarya, share some tips on the mix and match of Indo-western attire with the unique style of jewellery.


1) Halter neck crop tops with patterned earrings: A halter-neck crop top is the best to compliment your summer look. You can style it with a particular pattern or a design earrings to bring elegance.

2) Boat-neck crop top with simple coloured pendant: A boat-neck crop top with a matching traditional bottom or coloured lehenga can be your look for a casual day out or a function. Add a simple coloured pendant to enhance your look.

3) Ethnic mixed with western outlook: This summer give your ethnic jumpsuit that Indo-western look with designed dangler earrings to make the look smart and simple.

4) Front slit Indo-western long kurta with silver heavy earrings: Guess what’s saving kurtis this season? A slit in the front. This attire can by adorned with heavy silver earrings to add a carefree vibe.

5) Plain crop tops and floral palazzos with elaborated round neckpiece: Crop tops, paired with floral palazzo are an in thing, this season. Spice up the look further with an ornate round neckpiece to accentuate the hippy look further.

6) Boldness with the shine of gold: Big gold finger-rings with Indo-western collared kurtas are the best for the fashion season. But steer clear from overdoing it- you do’‘t want to look gaudy in any special occasion.

Follow @htlifeandstyle for more


How To Take the First Steps To Scale Up Your Career

When I stepped into a front desk role, I never imagined I would be an owner by age 25. I often get asked if I knew I wanted to be a business owner and entrepreneur. The truth is, I didn’t. It never occurred to me until much later in my career. I kept working hard and learning as much as I could, and everything was like a domino effect — one opportunity to the next. At some point, I realized that I was cut out to be a business owner, entrepreneur and leader. I’m deeply grateful for my experiences and proud of the hard work I put in, but I can’t stress this enough: I didn’t know it going in. I’m happy where I am and am continuing to learn, grow, and excel.

So whether you’re in a front desk role or trying to scale up in your career, here are five tips that can help move your career in the right direction:

Get the hard stuff done first.

That’s right, cross it off before the clock strikes 9! Whatever it is that you want to put off, whether it’s responding to email or filing papers, do it first. This means once the stuff you detest is done, you get to do all the tasks that bring you joy.

Take ‘massive action.’

What separates the go-getters from the not-so-go getters is massive action. What do I mean by massive action? If you don’t yet have a skill that would really benefit the job you’re doing or the job you want next, go out and develop that skill. If there’s research that would benefit the company that nobody’s doing — go do that research. It’s more than showing initiative. It’s all about actually doing the work that makes a difference for the business. Don’t let your fear or imposter syndrome keep you from greatness!

Never stop learning.

Learning encompasses keeping up with business trends, technology, the actions of your competitor businesses, and more. Teach yourself about nonviolent communication, empowering women-owned and women-run businesses, the hottest trends in benefits, how to retain employees and keep them happy – the learning opportunities are endless. Keep at it.

Become a brand.

Utilize social media to create a strong personal brand, and where appropriate, align it with your business. Personal branding is essentially the process of showcasing the kind of person you are and establishing a reliable and respected voice. Journalist Dan Rather and actress Melissa McCarthy both have strong personal brands, though they are quite different from each other. They’re also great examples because of their longevity. When Dan Rather came back into the public spotlight after he retired, his audience understood why, because his values and his voice demanded that he step back into the spotlight, in light of current events. You don’t have to think like Dan Rather or like Melissa McCarthy, but you can take a page (or eight) out of their personal branding books.

Cultivate relationships.

When I was 22, I sat on the board of a local HR organization. I built a relationship with one person in particular, but it didn’t occur to me at the time how valuable that relationship could become. When I left my job as a sales representative for a staffing firm to start my own company, she reached out and introduced me to another staffing firm that was interested in hiring me. She convinced me to meet with them, and because she was a trusted connection, I agreed. After three meetings with the staffing firm, we agreed I would come on board, and after a certain amount of revenue was generated by yours truly, I would become an owner of the firm.

Without that connection, Star Staffing would’ve never been on my radar and I wouldn’t have had the privilege of working alongside my partner and team. Relationships are essential, and you might not know which relationships will bear fruit in the long term. As long as the relationships aren’t unhealthy, cultivate all of them, and one or more or many will prove to be valuable in the long run.

Nobody gets a map when we appear in the world, no matter what philosophy or religion we follow. We’re all winging it a bit, especially in the beginning. But if we have measurable goals, we can make them attainable goals. Once they’re attainable goals, we can break them down into action, and then tackle that action one day at a time. If you’re dreaming of that corner office, use these five actions to keep your eyes on your own prize.