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Monthly Archives: March 2017

Types and Causes of Kidney Failure

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Image is from Medscape

Your kidneys are one of the most significant organs in the body. They are a pair of organs located towards your lower back and serve the purpose of filtering your blood to remove toxic and waste substances from the body. The toxic substances can be detrimental to your health if they are not removed out of the body.

What is a kidney failure?

Kidney failure is the condition where both of your kidneys or just one of them cannot serve their function to the required level of performance. This can be brought about by a myriad of factors that may interfere with the health and proper function of your kidney. Some of them include:

  • Kidney trauma
  • Some acute and chronic diseases
  • Toxic exposure to environmental pollutants
  • Severe dehydration

When your system is burdened with toxins and dangerous wastes resulting from a kidney failure, what follows are life threatening conditions that can be dangerous to your health. This is the reason why you should always seek the services of a doctor the moment you realize you have a kidney problem.

What causes kidney failure?

The following factors could predispose you to kidney failure

  • Loss of blood flow to the kidney

Kidney failure is often prompted by a sudden loss of blood flow to the kidneys. Some of the diseases and conditions that may lead to loss of blood flow to the kidneys include:

  • Heart attack
  • Severe burn
  • Dehydration
  • Liver failure
  • Allergic reactions
  • Urine elimination problem

When your body finds it difficult to eliminate urine from the system, there is a consequent build up and overloading of the kidneys. Certain cancers can lead to blockage of urine passageways. Such cancers include prostate cancer, cervical cancer, colon cancer, and bladder cancer. Other conditions which that can interfere with urination include

  • Trauma on the nerves controlling urination
  • Blood clots within the urinary tract
  • Kidney stones
  • Enlarged prostate

Other causes

Certain diseases and conditions can lead to kidney failure. They include:

  • A clot of blood in the kidney
  • Drug and alcohol
  • Dyes used in certain imaging tests
  • Chemotherapy drugs (medications that treat autoimmune diseases and cancer)
  • Overload of toxins from heavy metals
  • Thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura. (A disorder that causes blood clot in tiny vessels)

Types of kidney failure

Below are the types of kidney failure

Acute Prerenal kidney failure

Without enough flow of blood into the kidneys, the kidneys find it difficult to filter out the toxic wastes hence the occurrence of acute perennial kidney failure. This problem is usually solved once the problem leading to the low supply of blood has been determined.

Acute intrinsic kidney failure

Direct trauma causes this kind of kidney failure to either one of the kidneys or both of them. An accident or physical impact can lead to the trauma. Its causes are ischemia and toxic overload making it difficult for the kidney to perform its function in the right manner. Ischemia may be caused by

  • Obstruction of renal blood vessel
  • Shock
  • Severe bleeding
  • Glomerulonephritis

Chronic Prerenal kidney failure

This is the condition where the kidney begins to shrink thus losing its function. The primary cause of this is insufficient blood flowing into the kidneys.

Chronic intrinsic kidney failure

This usually occurs when there is a long-term damage to the kidneys as a result of intrinsic kidney diseases. Direct trauma causes these intrinsic kidney diseases to the kidneys like severe bleeding or insufficient oxygen.

Chronic post renal kidney failure

This is caused by a long-term blockage of the urinary tract thus hindering urination. The consequent is pressure which in turn cause kidney failure.

 

 

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Genetic Pathway to Allergies?

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Image is from CO Exist

An allergy is defined as a condition where the immune system reacts abnormally to a foreign substance. There are many different types of allergies. These include:

  • Medications
  • Food
  • Pollen
  • Latex
  • Animal Dander
  • Mold

The Genetic Risk

The tendency to develop allergies is genetic, therefore, they are hereditary, which means they are passed down from parent to child. However, this does not happen 100% of the time. Just because you or your spouse may have allergies doesn’t mean your child will definitely inherit them. For example, while approximately 17.6 million adults have been diagnosed with hay fever, less than half of that number of children, 6.6 million, have inherited the same allergy.

Additionally, children do not inherit a particular allergy, rather they inherit the tendency to develop them. For example, a parent may be allergic to pollen and develop hay fever, while their child may be allergic to chocolate and develop atopic eczema or dermatitis. Conversely, some children develop allergies when no known family member has them. Chances are if you are allergic to one substance, you are likely to be allergic to others.

Developing allergies because of your genetic links is known as atopic. While over half the children from atopic families will develop allergies, only one in five from unaffected families will be diagnosed. In families where both parents have allergies, this risk of their children inheriting them is slightly higher. If only one parent has been diagnosed, that risk decreases, however, it is important to note that if the mother has allergies, there is a slightly greater chance her children will develop them than if the father does.

The Allergic March

An allergy often follows a particular pattern where it is diagnosed in infancy through the toddler stage and into childhood, sometimes persisting into adulthood when a lifelong condition is diagnosed. When one allergic disease subsides and another takes its place, it is called the Allergic March. A common pattern is when atopic eczema leads to a food allergy, then asthma, and finally rhinitis. Some children, instead of experiencing the Allergic March, will experience a cumulative effect, meaning that one allergy does not replace another; it just gets added onto what they already have. Keep in mind, however, that all children are different; some may simply develop one allergy for life, instead of experiencing the Allergic March or a cumulative effect.

Common Allergens

Unfortunately, there are many allergens out there. The most common types are airborne and food. Some airborne allergies include:

  • Pollen
  • Dust Mites
  • Mold
  • Pets
  • Cockroaches

Food allergies include:

  • Wheat
  • Soy
  • Peanuts and tree nuts
  • Fish
  • Shellfish
  • Eggs
  • Cow’s milk.

Other common allergens include:

  • Insects, such as a bee sting
  • Chemicals
  • Medications

There are also cross-reactions and cross contamination. Cross-reactions happen when someone who has an allergy to one thing, has a reaction to another. For example, someone who is allergic to birch tree pollen might react to eating an apple if it contains a protein similar to one in the pollen. Another example is that people who are allergic to latex often react to bananas, avocados, chestnuts, and kiwi.

Cross contamination happens when you come in contact with a substance you are not allergic to, but it was processed with something you are during production or packaging. It can also happen at restaurants or even at home when the same utensils or surfaces are used for more than one type of food.

While genetics is not the sole cause of allergies, it has been proven that many allergies are hereditary, so you should be evaluated if you have a family history.

 

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Understanding Tuberculosis

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Image is from CDC

Tuberculosis, TB, is an airborne bacterial infection. While other organs and tissues may be involved, it normally affects the lungs first.

What You Need To Know

While most people who have TB are not contagious, the disease is spread through the air when an infected person sneezes, coughs, laughs, sings, or talks. If you are nearby and breath in those germs, there is a chance that you can become infected.

There is a difference between having active TB disease and being infected, known as latent TB. Latent TB is diagnosed when you have the TB germs in your body, but your immune system is strong enough to keep you from getting sick, and you are not contagious.

However, if you are diagnosed with active TB disease, you will have symptoms and you will be contagious. Therefore, it is critical to see a doctor right away.

Unfortunately, there are some forms of TB that are not eliminated with the usual medications prescribed. That means the TB germs in your body are resistant to them. These types of TB are classified as MDR TB and XDR TB.

MDR TB (multi-drug resistant) is resistant to the standard medication regime for active TB and is more serious. XDR TB is resistant to both standard and secondary drugs for treatment and any treatment rendered can be longer, expensive and more difficult. These forms of TB occur when medication is mismanaged or misused. For example:

  • If you do not complete the full course of treatment
  • If your doctor prescribes the wrong treatment, dose, or duration.
  • If medication is not available
  • If medication is of poor quality

It is more common in people who:

  • Do not take their medication regularly
  • Do not take medications for the full duration of treatment
  • Contract it a second time
  • Come from places where drug-resistant TB is more common
  • Have been around someone who has it

The good news is it is not easy to contract TB. You usually have to be close to someone infected for a long time. This is why it is often spread between family members, coworkers, and close friends.

What TB Does To Your Body

If you have a weakened immune system, you are at greater risk for developing TB. Some examples of conditions, treatments, and ages that cause weakened immunity are:

  • HIV/AIDS
  • Leukemia
  • Viral Hepatitis
  • Multiple Myeloma
  • Getting Chemotherapy
  • Elderly
  • Children under the age of 5

If you any of the above apply, the bacteria associated with TB is likely to settle in your lungs and start growing right away, because your immune system isn’t strong enough to fight it off. The disease will develop quickly, within days or weeks. If you are healthy and contract TB, it may take months, or even years to develop.

While TB attacks the lungs, it can also invade other parts of the body, such as:

  • Spine
  • Brain
  • Kidneys
  • Bones
  • Lymph Nodes
  • Skin

This is because the bacteria can move from the lungs through the blood and lymphatic systems. Symptoms of active disease include:

  • Cough
  • Weight Loss
  • Night Sweats
  • Fever
  • Chills

If other parts of the body are infected, symptoms specific to that area will occur. For example, if it has spread to your bones, you will have bone pain.

Despite what many people think, TB is not a disease of the past. About one third of the world’s population are infected. That is almost 2.5 billion people. Of those people 9.6 million have active TB. It is curable, however. Therefore it is important to recognize the symptoms, see a doctor right away, and follow the treatment ordered.

 

 

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Understanding Sarcoma Cancer

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Sarcoma is a very rare form of cancer. It is also different from most types of cancer because it occurs and grows in connective tissue. The cancer cells grow in parts of the body that support or connect other types of tissue to the body. While the tumors can appear anywhere, they are most commonly found in the muscles, bones, cartilage, tendons, fat, and nerves. They are also seen in the blood vessels of the legs and the arms. There are over 50 types of sarcoma and they are divided into three categories, bone sarcoma, soft tissue sarcoma, and osteosarcoma.

Who Is At Risk Of Developing Sarcoma?

It is unknown exactly what causes sarcoma, however, there are certain risk factors that make it more likely for people to develop this type of cancer.

  • Radiation exposure: If you had radiation to treat a previous cancer, you are more at risk.
  • Family history: If a member of your family had sarcoma, your chances of getting it are higher.
  • Genetic disorders: Certain genetic disorders such as retinoblastoma, neurofibromatosis, Gardner syndrome, or Li-Fraumeni syndrome put you at greater risk.
  • Bone disorder: If you have the bone disease called Paget’s disease, you are at risk of developing sarcoma.
  • Age: Children and young adults are more prone to developing an osteosarcoma.

What Are the Symptoms of Sarcoma?

In its early stages, sarcoma doesn’t show any symptoms. They can be hard to spot because they can grow anywhere in your body. If it is a soft tissue sarcoma, the first sign would be a painless lump. As it grows larger, it can press against the nerves or muscles causing pain. An osteosarcoma shows symptoms much earlier than the other types. There would be pain in the effected bone that comes and goes. Also, the pain is often worse at night. The area can also swell.

What Is the Treatment For Sarcoma?

How the cancer is treated would depend on the type, where it is located, and whether or not it has spread to other parts of the body. The most common treatments include:

  • Surgery: A doctor can perform surgery and remove the tumor from the body. It is possible for the doctor to remove the cancer cells, therefore, there would be no need for the effected limb to be amputated. If all of the cells cannot be removed, amputation might be your only chance of survivial.
  • Radiation: If surgery isn’t an option, radiation is used. It can also kill any cells left behind after another treatment.
  • Chemotherapy: Chemotherapy is used either with surgery or if surgery isn’t possible. It is also used if the cancer has spread.
  • Targeted therapies: This is a relatively new treatment and the doctors use man made antibodies from the immune system. They are placed to block the growth of cancer cells without damaging any of the normal cells.

What is the Survival Rate For Someone With Sarcoma?

In most cases, soft tissue sarcoma can be cured with one surgery. If it is an aggressive tumor and the cancer has spread, it can be harder to treat. With osteosarcoma, if the cancer has not spread the survival rate is between 60 and 80 percent. If the cancer can be completely removed with surgery, the chance of a full recovery is excellent. If the cancer has spread to other parts of the body, the treatment would need to be more aggressive and the chances of being cured completely are much lower.

Sarcoma is a rare and serious type of cancer. If it is caught early enough, the chances of survival are great.

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What is Colon Cancer?

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Image is from Everyday Health

Colon cancer is the accumulation of cancer cells in the lower part of the large intestine. These tumors typically begin as small benign growths referred to as polyps that turn into malignant tumors over time.

Stages of Colon Cancer

When a patient is diagnosed with colon cancer, they will be diagnosed with a stage of the disease, depending on it advancement. Colon Cancer is broken up into stages Tis to T4b.

  • Tis -In this stage, cancer cells are only found in the top layers on lining in the colon.
  • T1 –At this stage, the cancer cells have begun to spread to the tissue below the lining of the colon.
  • T2 – During stage T2, the cancer cells have developed into the deeper tissue that is involved in pushing along waste during the digestive process.
  • T3 – At T3 the cancer has spread to the connective tissue that connects the colon to other parts of the body, as well as permeating into some of the other surrounding tissues.
  • T4a – At this point the cancer cells have grown throughout all parts of the colon.
  • T4b – At this final stage the cancer cells have spread past the colon into other parts of the body.

What are the Symptoms of Colon Cancer?

Symptoms of colon cancer can come on suddenly or develop gradually over time. Often times symptoms of colon cancer are mistaken for gastrointestinal issues or discomfort. Some symptoms of colon cancer include,

  • Blood in the stool
  • Weakness
  • Fatigue
  • Unintentional weight loss
  • Abnormal changes in your bowel habits, such as constipation or diarrhea that lasts for more than a month
  • Abdominal pain or discomfort
  • Fullness in bowel even after going to the bathroom.

Risks for Colon Cancer

While there is no specific cause for every case of colon cancer there are risks that may make you more likely to develop colon cancer.

History of Polyps

While many times polyps are found and easily removed, repeated development of polyps is linked to an increase in colon cancer.

Low Fiber Diet

Low fiber and high fat diets have been linked to an increased chance for developing polyps and colon cancer.

Obesity

Those with a BMI in the obesity level have an increased risk of getting colon cancer as well as an increased risk of suffering more complications from it.

Inflammatory Gastrointestinal Problems

Chronic disease of the gastrointestinal track, including colitis and Crohns disease, can increase the risk of development of colon cancer.

Age

Most colon cancer patients are 50 years of age or older.

Genetics

A family history of colon cancer increases your chance of developing the disease as well. There are also genetically passed conditions that can greatly increase your risk for colon cancer including,

  • Hereditary nonpolyposis colorectal cancer, otherwise known as lynch syndrome
  • Familial adenomatous polyposis, which leads to an increase of the development of polyps in the colon.

Diagnosing Colon Cancer

Diagnosis of colon cancer is either done through routine screenings that are part of annual physicals or testing when gastrointestinal problems are present. To diagnose colon cancer patients will,

  • Receive blood tests to check for cancer markers
  • Undergo a colonoscopy which involves a camera scope of the patient’s rectum, colon and intestinal track.

Treatment Options

Treatment options for colon cancer are typically determined based on the stage of cancer the patient is in. Treatment options can include,

  • Polyp removal during colonoscopy
  • Partial colectomy
  • Removal of lymph nodes
  • Colon resection
  • Targeted drug therapies
  • Chemotherapy
  • Radiation treatment

When it comes to treating colon cancer, routine wellness screenings are important as early diagnosis will lead to the best prognosis.

 

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Tests to Determine Heart Disease

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Image is from Harvard Health Publications-Harvard University

All of your body’s vital organs are essential to your living a quality life. However, it is your heart that you must consider as your body’s engine. You must take care of your heart if you desire to live a long life full of quality and vitality.

If you have any signs and symptoms that something may be amiss with your heart, you are wise to get to your doctor as soon as possible, so the physician checks your heart. Your doctor may order some tests, specifically geared to the health of this vital organ.

Your doctor puts his knowledge and skill at work to determine what he or she thinks is the problem with your heart, or if there is any problem by ordering tests for you can take according to his best possible diagnosis.

There are many different tests the doctor can order for you such as blood tests and a variety of X-rays depending on his findings. The following are some tests done to determine heart disease.

Thanks to the advancements in medical technology in testing for heart disease, many heart problems are recognized before they cause irreversible problems. These heart tests enable the doctor to begin treatment that can reverse or manage your heart condition for years to come, allowing you to live your life as normally and comfortable as possible.

Holter Monitoring

The technician gives you what looks like a small box with straps that is attached to you and taken home. You wear the long strap across your body, and the box hangs loose. This monitor records any irregularities in your heart pattern that are otherwise not recorded in other tests like an Electrocardiogram. You wear this monitor for one to three days.

Electrocardiogram at Rest
Electrocardiogram During Activity

This test records your heart’s electrical pattern, thus recording any irregularities in the pattern of your heart.

Chemical Stress Test

The technician attaches electrodes to various parts of your arms, legs, and chest. The technician performs an IV and injects a chemical that causes your heart to pump gradually faster until your heart reaches a pulse rate of 150-170 beats per minute. This test is useful for people who cannot tolerate running on a treadmill.

Stress Test on a Treadmill

Electrodes are attached to your chest, arms, and legs, and you walk, gradually run on a treadmill until your heart rate reaches the required rate of 150-170 beats per minute.

Echocardiogram

While in a laying position the technician gently runs a smooth device over the area of your heart to record images of great detail of the structure and function of your heart.

Catheterization of the Heart

Under local anesthesia, the doctor runs a thin hair tube into the main artery located in the groin. The tube is inserted into a sheath and threaded through the artery until it reaches your heart. This tube examines all the chambers of your heart and measures the pressure in your heart. The doctor frequently injects a dye through the tube that lights up all your blood vessels, valves, chambers and heart to visualize any abnormal areas.

Cardiac Computerized Tomography or CAT scan

The technician has you lay on a table that slides inside of an open circle. The beams from this scanner rotate around your body, taking images of your heart and chest.

MRI or Cardiac Magnetic Resonance

You lie on a table inside of a long enclosed machine. The machine has magnets that take pictures of your heart. As you lie in this machine, you find it very noisy as due to the clicking of the magnets.

 

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Difference Between Rash and Eczema

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Image is from Prezerve.com

Eczema,is a reaction to an external or internal allergen stimulus. There are listed, according to the Eczema Association at least eight various kinds of eczema, and each type of eczema warrants a different healing option.

Understanding Eczema

Eczema considered chronic and long-term forms red, scaly, itchy patches on the skin that can range from mild to more severe.

The itching that develops can cause eczema can get so severe that the areas start to bleed. Intense skin scratching, in turn, places you at risk for secondary skin infections.

Eczema develops anywhere on the body, such as the face, arms, neck, legs, and chest. Symptoms vary from person to person. Eczema is migratory and frequently does not attack the same part of your body.

Eczema at its worse looks bad to other people to the point that people think you have a condition that they can catch. Eczema is not a contagious disease, but puts you in a heartbreaking dilemma.

Eczema is found to be hereditary or stems from an allergic reaction to some substance, and your doctor determines which type of eczema is bothering you, what triggers your eczema, and what healing methods are best to eliminate your eczema problem.

Eczema is a common problem in today’s society with many people like you trying to conquer its effects.There are no medical options that eliminate eczema in its entirety, so the goal is to manage this disease and keep it at bay.

Once a baby is said to have eczema, the chances are that this condition follows them as they grow and remains with them into the adult years. You do not have to have eczema as a child to develop it in your adult years.

If you experience any or maybe all of the following symptoms, you may be dealing eczema. Your doctor must determine which type and what health care options to use.

  • Patches of red skin
  • Skin that is dry and sensitive to touch
  • Notices dark patches of skin
  • Skin areas take on a rough, scaly look
  • You rusting on the top outer layer of skin
  • Have areas of swelling

Eczema is hard to deal with because when you think you have eliminated this condition it flare-ups once again.

Rash

You can develop a rash from an unlimited number of sources such as the environment, medication, cleaning supplies, stress, heat, cold, fevers, pet hair, food sources, and more.

Sometimes you may develop a rash without any indication of why or how the rash developed. In all instances, you just have to wait for it to disappear. No one can catch a rash from you.

A rash, not considered a chronic condition is short-term. General signs and symptoms include changes to the skin in color, appearance, or texture.

A rash can develop any place on the body at any time. A rash stems from your skin coming in contact with an external allergen or when you ingest something causing an allergic reaction, such as a drug or food you know you have an allergy. You have a rash if you notice,

  • Changes in skin color
  • Warmth to the area
  • Bumpy areas or hives
  • Chapped skin
  • Dry, cracked skin
  • Blistered skin

Types of rashes are extensive and varied. You may know what caused your rash, such as, you are allergic to fish and you eat fish, or you have a fever of over 101 degrees, or you were in the sun too long. Certain conditions cause rashes such as the chickenpox and measles.

There are over-the-counter preparations to eliminate itchy skin such as antihistamine pills like Benadryl and itch-relieving creams.

 

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Symptoms of Sarcoma Cancer

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Image is from Sarcoma Foundation of America

Sarcoma is a rare type of cancer that forms in the connective tissues of the bones, tendons, muscles, nerves, cartilage, blood vessels, fat, and other areas within the body. While there are dozens of types of sarcoma cancer, they are typically broken down into two main types, including soft tissue sarcoma and osteosarcoma.

Hard to Detect Sarcoma Cancer

Not only does this type of cancer only affect a small percentage of the population, it also can be extremely difficult to detect. This is because the cancer is not specific to one area of the body, but rather it can be practically anywhere throughout the body. Another issue that makes detection difficult is the fact that the cancer starts to grow in the connective tissues. This allows the tumor to grow undetected for quite some time. This makes it very important to know what the various symptoms of sarcoma cancer are.

Symptoms of Soft Tissue Sarcoma

Unfortunately, most people experience no symptoms during the early stages of sarcoma. As the tumor in the soft tissues grows, it can push against the nearby nerves. This, in turn, can cause a person pain or soreness in the area of the tumor or a shortness of breath. The most common areas affected by soft tissue sarcoma are the knees, legs, shoulders, abdomen, and hips. Other common areas include the arms, hands, head, and neck.

Symptoms of Osteosarcoma

Although adults are not immune to osteosarcoma, it is most common among young adults and children. Like soft tissue sarcoma, osteosarcoma is hard to detect, especially during the early stages. The first sign is bone pain in the area of the cancer. Since, children frequently experience growing pains, this early symptom is often overlooked.

The primary differences between pain associated with osteosarcoma and other types of pain are that the pain usually worsens in the evening and the pain is centralized in just one arm or leg and not both. Within a few weeks of the first sign of pain, you may notice some swelling in the affected area. The pain and swelling may eventually cause a slight limp.

Due to the difficulty of detecting sarcoma cancer, it is extremely important that you discuss any unusual pain with your doctor. A biopsy, ultrasound, CT scan, MRI, and/or bone scan are often used to diagnose sarcoma. In many cases, sarcoma is treated with just surgery, if caught early enough.

 

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Heart Disease Prevention

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Cardiac disease in on the rise and many medical professionals believes that it is the way you live in today’s busy world.

While our digital technologies of today are supposed to make life easier at work and home, in many aspects is only making life more challenging.

You may complain that you do not have the time to prepare well-balanced meals offering your body the essential nutrients it needs to stay healthy.

You may, like many may have a sedentary job at a computer that provides no worthwhile exercise.

You must take time for yourself. You must pay attention to what you feed your body and fit in some attractive exercise options for yourself to keep your heart as healthy as possible.

Recognize that if heart disease runs in your family history, this puts you at risk for heart problems. There is nothing you can do about your genes, but you can change your lifestyle to help prevent this family history from becoming a more serious heart problem.

Smoking

Smoking adds to heart problems in addition to other risks like cancer. If you smoke, cut this out of your life. If you are devoted to living your life to the fullest, you can and will quit smoking. Smoking shortens your life because of the chemicals in tobacco, no matter what form you use, narrows the heart’s vital arteries. When artery walls narrow this leads to a heart attack you may not survive.

Obesity

Did you know that close to 60% of all Americans are overweight?

. 30 pounds over your ideal body weight equals overweight

. 30 pounds over your ideal body weight equals obesity. Get in your perfect body weight for you, for a healthier heart. Stops making excuses of why you overweight, such as,

  • It is in your genes
  • The medicine you take
  • Your mental health
  • Stress

It is time to avoid excuses and get on a heart-healthy lifestyle.

Never say diet, and never consider going on a diet. Diets cannot last the rest of your life, and while they may initially work, when you stop your diet the weight comes back two fold at least.

Exercise

No weight loss plan works without constant exercise. If all you can do is walking for 30 minutes a day, devote yourself to doing an exercise you enjoy. It is only 15 to 30 minutes out of your day, and it helps you,

  • Lose Weight
  • Strengthens your heart muscles
  • Decreases Blood Pressure
  • Decreases Cholesterol Levels
  • Decreases Diabetes

Eat Well-Balanced Meals and Snacks

Three meals a day with three fruits, vegetable, or protein snacks per day. Refer to the original food pyramid for guidance on what to eat and what proportions every day. Your food pyramid includes just the right amounts, the body requires daily to provide the right amount of essential nutrients.

  • Whole grains
  • Fruits
  • Vegetable
  • Fats
  • Proteins (Greatly decrease red meat and eat more chicken, turkey, fish)
  • Dairy

Think about removing from your kitchen every white food such as salt, sugar, and white flour. White is not healthy or good for your heart. Decrease or avoid alcohol, caffeine, and sodas.

Preparation of Foods

Learn how to prepare meals healthy. Avoid,

  • Deep fried foods
  • Using a lot of oil (use extra virgin olive oil for cooking
  • Canned goods, use fresh or fresh frozen
  • Use a vegetable steamer. Steaming does not destroy essential vitamins and minerals
  • Bake, broil, or grill

Visit your doctor as soon as possible. Talk to your doctor about your ideas for a lifestyle change and weight loss to prevent or decrease your risks for heart disease before initiating any changes.

 

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High Pollen Count This Year

pollen-allergens

Image is from Pollen.com

Individuals with pollen allergies may face tough times this year as pollen count is said to heighten. Growth and development of trees as well their production of pollen will soon intensify since the tree season is historically known to begin in early to mid-March or April (latest). Chances are that the season might peak with high pollen counts. Additionally, the grass season (known for grass pollen) generally starts at around may, which in any case will worsen the situation. If you are usually allergic to pollen, this is to say misery and adversity awaits you. Apart from the usual allergic reaction of sneezing, coughing, itchy eyes, headaches, throat aches and a runny nose, a combination of high pollen counts could result in wheezing and a lot of trouble while breathing. Precaution is much needed especially because an inflamed airway from allergic triggers could eventually develop into asthma which is fatal. If you have developed pollen allergies in the past, it is only prudent to take medication early enough before the season hits.

Pollen Allergies

Outdoor allergens such as pollen are the leading causes of seasonal allergies. It’s possible for the wind to carry pollen for long distances since they are light, small and dry. The levels of pollen vary each day depending upon various factors such as the weather.

Common Pollen Allergies

The following types of pollen allergies are the most prevalent:

  • Grass pollen

Grasses usually release pollen as from late spring until fall. Out of over 1,200 species of grass, the major causative of allergies are Bermuda, Johnson, blue, Timothy, sweet vernal and orchard grasses.

  • Weed pollen

Ragweed is a weed pollen plant that has grown throughout the United States especially in pastures and dry fields and even at construction sites and by roadsides. This tall and branched plant produces a lot of pollen which makes it a major causative agent of hay fever in most areas. As a result of high weed pollen count this year, you may experience severe pollen allergy symptoms.

  • Tree pollen

Hardwood deciduous trees typically pollinate from late winter towards the end of spring, but this might depend on your geographical location. Watch out for pollen from the following trees:

  • hazel
  • ash
  • elm
  • oak
  • birch
  • alder
  • maple

Symptoms of Pollen Allergy

The most common symptoms of allergy include nasal congestion, runny nose, itchy watery eyes, and sneezing. An allergist can help you perform allergy testing so as to determine whether you are reacting to pollen or you’re allergic to another substance like dust mites, pet danger or mold.

Tips for Pollen Allergy Relief

The following are smart and simple tips to help relieve you when you have pollen allergy:

  • Cover up – put on a simple painter’s mask when performing outside chores or working in the garden.
  • Beat the clock – Since pollen production is at its peak early in the morning, try to plan outdoor activities for other times of the day
  • Seek for clean air always – when at home, you could achieve this by keeping windows closed and using an air conditioner as well as often changing filters. When driving, keep all windows up and set the car’s air conditioner on “recirculate.”
  • A change of clothes of clothes could do – When you get home, taking a quick bath and changing clothes can work effectively at eradicating pollen that may have collected on fabrics or hair while you were outside.
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