At Ourensividad we have been working for a year and highlighting the longevity of Ourense contrasted with the data provided by the INE, observing the number of centenarians in the province, 384, which is equivalent to 126 per 100,000 inhabitants, the highest figure in Spain and the highest in the world, equating to long-lived blue zones such as Okinawa, Icaria, Sardinia, Nicoya or the Adventists of Loma Linda.
We attribute this longevity, with high quality of life, to epigenetics. Epigenetics caused by modifications in our DNA, largely due to its hypo- or hypermethylation, which expresses or inhibits genes related to chronic diseases and even certain types of cancer. Among the environment that influences this epigenetics we have factors such as anthropology and customs, climate, environment, nutrition, stress-free lifestyle and, above all, our water.
A quality water that, in addition to providing very good hydration to our body, provides its mineral-medicinal properties and takes center stage in thermalism. Ourense is the world capital of thermalism with 13 hot springs and different therapeutic indications. We have applications for rheumatitis, dermatitis, respiratory conditions, gastroenterology and with hepatobiliary characteristics, among others, which act on the health of our citizens. We also know that depending on the temperature of the water in the province we have different types such as:
• Hypothermal: less than 35º C.
• Mesothermal: between 35 and 37º C.
• Hyperthermal: more than 37º C.
The temperature, if it is high, causes vasodilatory, analgesic, sedative and relaxing effects; while if it is low it produces vasoconstriction and a sensation of stimulation, in both cases the thermoregulatory mechanisms are launched.
On the Ourense campus, we have great thermalism professionals.
Finally, within integrated thermal medicine, eating disorders associated with lifestyle and emotions have been described. In this sense, according to the available literature, hydrotherapy works by reducing cortisol and symptoms related to stress. It is known that Hydrotherapy produces different healthy effects in various body systems depending on the temperature of the water, thus improving certain pathologies but there is a lack of evidence on its mechanisms, with therapies also existing against obesity, a chronic pathology that is increasing.
Within integrated thermal medicine, nutrition is a great ally of thermalism, the synergy between a good diet and certain pathologies such as inflammatory diseases or dermatitis has proven scientific evidence. Furthermore, in Ourense there are already companies that have used interesting functional bioactives from our Atlantic diet such as native olive oil or turmeric with certain ice creams made with 50% thermal water. We also have great professionals in the field on the Ourense campus and the most complete food industry pilot plant in the Spanish northwest with 270 m2 and cutting-edge equipment that is dedicated to teaching and researching processes of meat and fish products, dairy products, vegetables, bakery, wine and beer. And we have it here, on the Ourense campus.
The spa can play an important role in the prevention of chronic diseases and nutritional education to act in diet therapy as a complementary integrated therapy. That is why we promote, together with other organizations such as the University of Vigo campus or the Administration, the training of different health professionals, such as pharmacists, doctors, veterinarians and nurses, among others, in the field of medical hydrology. and students in the different scientific-technical fields of Thermalism and Balneotherapy: Therapeutics, chemistry, biology, physics, legislation, organization, facilities and hydrogeology, providing basic training and providing them with the necessary tools to promote initiation in research tasks.
Ourense has all the elements, committed administration professionals, a dynamic and very efficient University with an innovative “water campus”, great public and private professionals, good disseminators, and excellent raw materials as demonstrated by its epigenetic legacy to establish the bases of the balneotherapy of the future.
- FRANCISCO MARAVER EYZAGUIRRE Cátedra de Hidrología Médica. Facultad de Medicina. Universidad Complutense Importancia de la medicina termal 28040 Madrid. España
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