Eating For A Healthier Heart

Monday, November 24, 2008

February is Heart Month. Take advantage of easy strategies to reduce your risk.

February is American Heart Month. That’s especially meaningful for the more than 64 million Americans who have cardiovascular disease. If you or a loved one has heart disease, or if you want to prevent it, good news—there are many ways to increase the odds of beating heart disease. For example, what and how much you eat can affect your blood cholesterol level. A high blood cholesterol level is a major risk factor for heart disease.
Two heart-friendly dietary goals are:

1. For those who eat a higher-fat diet, reduce saturated fat and cholesterol.
2. Eat plenty of fruits, vegetables and whole-grain products that contain fiber, especially soluble fiber found in oatmeal, beans and apples.

To turn those goals into action, start with food labels. If you know what to look for, food labels can be a powerful tool to help you forge a heart-friendly lifestyle.

A quick and easy reference on food labels is the American Heart Association’s heart-check mark. This is the distinctive red heart with the white check mark in the center. Healthy Choice products bearing this mark meet the American Heart Association’s and the FDA’s standards for heart-supporting food choices.

Also, you can look for statements on food labels like “diets low in saturated fat and cholesterol may reduce the risk of heart disease.” Statements like these are called health claims. Health claims describe links between what you eat and your risk of diseases like cancer, osteoporosis, heart disease, etc. Only health claims approved by the U.S. Federal Drug Administration (FDA) are allowed on food labels. Here are two health claims about heart disease.

Health claim: Dietary saturated fat and cholesterol and risk of coronary heart disease
Here’s what you might see on a label: “While many factors affect heart disease, diets low in saturated fat and cholesterol may reduce the risk of this disease.”

Health claim: Fruits, vegetables, and grain products that contain fiber, particularly soluble fiber, and risk of coronary heart disease
Here’s what you might see on a label: “Diets low in saturated fat and cholesterol and rich in fruits, vegetables, and grain products that contain some types of dietary fiber, particularly soluble fiber, may reduce the risk of heart disease, a disease associated with many factors.”

You can visit Solutions for a label displaying the heart-check mark.

source :

How to Really Lose Weight ?

Friday, November 21, 2008

It’s hard to lose weight today with all of the conveniences. We have fast food, cell phones, cars, and TV. All of these can make life easier but there is a cost.

We don’t eat as healthy as we use to. There is not as much physical exercise, because we just don’t have to anymore. This can be a health problem. You want to become aware of this and take measures to improve your health.

Why should you be concerned?

Because gaining excess weight can cut down on your lifespan, quality of life and your enjoyment. Overweight can cause the following:

• Hypertension
• Osteoarthritis
• Diabetes
• Heart Disease
• Stroke
• Sleep Apnea
• Cancer

Where do you start?

You can start by looking at the food you eat and your lifestyle.

• How large are your portions?
• How processed is your food?
• What type of food do you eat?
• How many calories do you consume?
• How much exercise do you get?
• Do you sleep enough?
• Do you handle stress well?
• How important is it to you to be healthier?

How can you make it enjoyable?

You could make wholesome home cooked meals that you enjoy. Take up a class like Yoga or Karate. Participate in a sport you enjoy, or go for walks.

You should try to find things that you enjoy and incorporate them into your daily life.

What can help you with your goals?

Start off by deciding what is really important to you and if it is worth your effort to achieve it.

Look forward to the new improved and healthier you that will be worth it.

Think about the benefits you and your family will receive from looking and feeling great.

Decide that you are important and are worth the effort to improve. You put effort into work and other things in life. Aren’t you just as important or more?

Basically you need to decide if it’s worth the effort to improve yourself and then take action.

Decide to eat healthier, exercise, and look into alternative ideas that can help you reach your goals.

There are foods that can satisfy you without excess calories; these include fresh vegetables like tomatoes.

You can look for quality herbs or supplements that may help, but be sure that they are safe. If in doubt, then consult with your doctor or nutritional advisor.

OK let’s start right now, today! Don’t say you will start tomorrow because tomorrow never comes.

source :

What Is The Main Cause Of Insomnia

Thursday, November 20, 2008

There are certain functions in the body that cannot be ignored. One of these is the desire to sleep. Most healthy people have the strong need to sleep at the end of the day after a hard day’s work. This is a natural response that helps one recoup. Having a good sleep is a blessing. This is because of the fact that it helps one to re-charge the energy that has been lost during the day. If this energy has not been re-charged, it must be asserted that there are side effects that can be experienced. Some of the experiences as a result of insomnia can be dangerous. And therefore it must be said that it is a condition that should not be allowed to go un-monitored.
Generally, Insomnia Is Recognized By

* One having trouble falling asleep;
* Awaking in the middle of sleep and not being able to drop of to sleep again;
* Waking up often during the night and having trouble going back to sleep;
* Awaking very early in the morning
* Un-refreshed sleep

Types Of Insomnia

There are two types of insomnia; Primary Insomnia, in which there are no health-related problems, and Secondary Insomnia that is caused by health problems. Health problems such as heartburn, depression, cancer, asthma, arthritis, medication, etc. often cause insomnia.

Insomnia may last for any length of time, and it may last as long as its causal health problem lasts. Insomnia may last for a short while or it may go on for prolonged periods. In addition to this it may be intermittent, taking breaks and occurring every now and then. Acute insomnia can also be caused by a specific event that has upset a person. It can also be caused by illness, stress, external factor inhibiting sleep, such as lights on the room where one sleeps or too much noise around, and a change of work patterns.
Diagnosing Insomnia

Generally, insomnia is diagnosed through the experiences of a person and how they explain it to a physician. Physically examining a person is also used. In some cases where insomnia is severe, patients can be simply observed to confirm their conditions.
Course Of Action Against Insomnia

Advising a person on what they should do for better sleep at night is normally the first course of action for those suffering with insomnia. For acute or temporary insomnia medications are not recommended. However, in severe conditions medications are used. The effectiveness of these varies considerably, and in few cases they may not work well enough.
Good Habits To Develop Better Sleep

Generally, for people not to suffer with sleep disorders such as Insomnia, it is advised that they:

Develop a regular sleeping time at night and also a fixed time for waking up each morning. Naps should be avoided because they tend to rob one of night sleep.

Do not consume anything with caffeine of nicotine; these are stimulants that will keep one awake for hours after they are consumed. Alcohol too is another agent that disrupts sleep.

Exercise regularly but not before going to bed. This is because exercise tends to pump one up, and keeps the blood pressure higher. It is recommended that one should not exercise within 3 hours before bed time.

Should not eat a heavy dinner or anytime near sleeping time. This is because until the food is digested properly the body cannot rest properly. The activity of digestion is enough to disturb a person, especially if s/he is already having a problem sleeping. As opposed to avoiding heavy meals before sleep, it is recommended that one consume something light before bedtime. This helps one to get some sleep.

source :

Cholesterol and Statins

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Under new cholesterol guidelines, as many as 36 million Americans may need to be on the drugs called statins. Statins have become one of the first-line therapies for treating people with high cholesterol. Many patients are seeing dramatic improvement in their cholesterol levels with the use of statins.

Unfortunately, many who are supposed to take a statin drug do not. Studies suggest at least 20-percent of the people who have a prescription for statins, do not take them as they should - or at all. It is important to take seriously the need to control cholesterol. The first step, of course, is watching your diet and exercise. However, statins can play a tremendous role in those who continue to have high cholesterol readings in spite of good exercise and eating habits.

Following is a primer for you on cholesterol and statins:

What is Cholesterol?
Cholesterol is one of the fats the body needs to build cell walls, make hormones and process fats. Below 200-milligram per deciliter (mg/dL) is considered desirable for the total cholesterol level.

LDL Cholesterol
Too much LDL cholesterol can clog arteries, increase risk of heart disease, stroke and other related complications. It is a major component of plaque. Below 130mg is desirable.

HDL Cholesterol
HDL cholesterol carries excess cholesterol away from arteries. Low HDL levels are associated with heart disease. Above 45mg is desirable.

How Cholesterol Works

Healthy Bloodstream
HDL eliminates excess cholesterol so it can pass through the bloodstream without causing plaque to build.

Areas Affected by Excessive Plaque
When blood flow in heart arteries is interrupted by plaque, some heart muscle could die, causing atherosclerosis, angina, coronary artery disease and heart attack. When the blood flow to the brain is impeded, a stroke may occur. Less blood flow to the lower limbs may also result in gangrene.

The Liver
The liver makes thousands of milligrams of cholesterol daily and carries it to other parts of the body. In addition, 400 to 500 milligrams is added through our diet.

Cholesterol combines with other substances in the bloodstream to form plaque, which thickens arterial walls, narrowing the inner channel and impeding blood flow. Plaque can rupture, encouraging blood clots that can block the vessel entirely.

Statin-Cleaned Bloodstream
Statins can reduce LDL cholesterol by inhibiting an enzyme in liver cells. Cells in the liver use an enzyme to produce cholesterol. Statins block the enzyme, which causes the liver cells to produce extra receptors to remove more cholesterol from the bloodstream.

If your doctor recommends statins after you have tried other remedies such as exercise and diet, please consider taking them as directed. Doing so could literally add years to your life.

source : fitnessandfreebies


Monday, November 17, 2008

Depression can be considered a condition that involves the body, mood, and thoughts. It is a mental state where a person encounters an emotional state of melancholy, despair and guilt. Depression affects the way a person eats and sleeps, his emotions and feelings about himself, and the way or manner in which he faces his daily routine. This is not to be confused or considered as a passing phase of mood or a personal condition. Without treatment, symptoms can last for weeks, months, or years.

Depression has no single cause. It is often a combination of various factors. Whatever be the causes of depression, it is not just a state of mind alone. It is related to certain physical changes in the brain, and connected to an imbalance of a type of chemical called neurotransmitters. Heredity, stress, trauma, weak physical conditions, schizophrenia, drug abuse, alcoholism are some of the common factors involved with depression.

Not everyone who is depressed show symptoms. For some, the symptoms may be few and far between. Severity of symptoms varies with individuals, with regard to age, sex and even time. However there are some general symptoms shown by these persons. They are anxiety, hopelessness, pessimism, lethargy, insomnia, overeating, or in some cases loss of appetite, suicidal tendencies, restlessness, irritability inappropriate social behavior etc.

Depression is very treatable with a high percentage of success. Research and studies in this field have found out new means and medical procedures which can beat depression. It is always best not to go for self treatment or practices without the recommendations of a professional health consultant. Advanced anti depressant drugs, coupled with various forms of psychological therapy have proved to be very effective.

In spite of all the medical advances and high success percentage in the treatment of depression, it is to be understood that patience and support from the friends and relatives of the patient is what is most important. These are the confidence building tools and devices which will hold him in good stead. No matter what medical treatment or procedures are used, it is up to his dear ones to support and help him overcome this terrible situation.

Bill Urell reviews only the best diet and fitness plans, tips, and articles that promote healthier lifestyles. Visit us and claim your FREE E-Cookbook,or 101 Romantic Ideas as a welcome gift.

source: Healthy Living Article

What Is Arrhythmias?

Sunday, November 16, 2008


An arrhythmia is any disorder of your heart rate or heart rhythm, such as beating too fast (tachycardia), too slow (bradycardia), or irregularly.
Alternative Names
Dysrhythmias; Abnormal heart rhythms; Bradycardia; Tachycardia

Normally, the 4 chambers of the heart (2 atria and 2 ventricles) contract in a very specific, coordinated manner.

The electrical impulse that signals your heart to contract in a synchronized manner begins in the sinoatrial node (SA node), which is your heart's natural pacemaker.

The signal leaves the SA node and travels through the 2 upper chambers (atria). Then the signal passes through another node (the AV node), and finally, through the lower chambers (ventricles). This path enables the chambers to contract in a coordinated fashion.

Problems can occur anywhere along this conduction system, causing various arrhythmias. Examples include:

* Supraventricular tachycardia - a fast heart rate that originates in the upper chambers (atria). The most common are atrial fibrillation or flutter, and atrioventricular nodal reentry tachycardia.
* Ventricular tachycardia - a fast heart rate that originates in the lower chambers (ventricles).
* Bradycardia - a slow heart rate due to problems with the SA node's pacemaker ability, or some interruption in conduction through the natural electrical pathways of the heart.

The risks of getting a tachycardia or bradycardia varies greatly, depending on the condition of your heart, prior heart attack, blood chemistry imbalances, or endocrine abnormalities.

Arrhythmias may also be caused by some substances or drugs, including beta blockers, psychotropics, sympathomimetics, caffeine, amphetamines, and cocaine. Sometimes antiarrhythmic medications -- prescribed to treat one type of arrhythmia -- can actually cause another type of arrhythmia.

Some types of arrhythmias may be life-threatening if not promptly and properly treated.

* Fast or slow heart beat (palpitation)
* Skipping beats
* Fainting
* Light-headedness, dizziness
* Chest pain
* Shortness of breath
* Skipping beats - changes in the pattern of the pulse
* Paleness
* Sweating
* Cardiac arrest

The person may not have symptoms.
Exams and Tests

A doctor will listen to your heart with a stethoscope and feel your pulse. Your blood pressure may be low or normal.

The following tests may be performed to identify arrhythmias:

* Ambulatory cardiac monitoring with a Holter monitor (used for 24 hours) or loop recorder (worn for 2 weeks or longer)
* Echocardiogram
* Electrophysiology study (EPS)
* Coronary angiography

If an arrhythmia is detected, various tests may be done to confirm or rule out suspected causes. EPS testing may be performed to locate the origin of the arrhythmia and determine the best treatment, especially if a pacemaker implantation or catheter ablation procedure is being considered.

When an arrhythmia is serious, urgent treatment may be required to restore a normal rhythm. This may include intravenous medications, electrical "shock" therapy (defibrillation or cardioversion), or implanting a temporary pacemaker to interrupt the arrhythmia.

Supraventricular arrhythmias may be treated with anti-arrhythmic drugs. However, most supraventricular arrhythmias can be treated and cured with radiofrequency ablation, eliminating the need for lifelong drug therapy.

Increasingly, most ventricular tachycardias are treated with an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD). As soon as arrhythmia begins, the ICD sends a shock to terminate it, or a burst of pacing activity to override it.

Bradycardias that cause symptoms can be treated by implanting a permanent pacemaker.
Outlook (Prognosis)

The outcome is dependent on several factors:

* The kind of arrhythmia -- whether it is supraventricular tachycardia, or a more dangerous arrhythmia such as ventricular tachycardia or ventricular fibrillation, which are potentially fatal
* The overall pumping ability of the heart
* The underlying disease and its ability to be treated

With bradycardias treated with a permanent pacemaker, the outlook is usually good.
Possible Complications

* Angina (chest pain caused by imbalance of supply and demand for oxygen in the heart muscle)
* Heart attack
* Heart failure
* Stroke
* Sudden death

When to Contact a Medical Professional

Call your provider if you develop any of the symptoms of a possible arrhythmia. Also call your provider if you have been diagnosed with an arrhythmia and your symptoms worsen or do not improve with treatment.

Taking steps to prevent coronary artery disease may reduce your chance of developing an arrhythmia. These steps include not smoking; eating a well-balanced, low-fat diet; and exercising regularly

source :health-information

What's in a Cigarette?

By: K. H. Ginzel, M.D.

For those who still don't know — let me emphatically state that cigarette smoking is a true addiction! To grasp this well-documented fact, one really doesn't have to study all the supporting scientific evidence. One simply needs to consider that no other drug is self-administered with the persistence, regularity and frequency of a cigarette. At an average rate of ten puffs per cigarette, a one to three pack-a-day smoker inhales 70,000 to 200,000 individual doses of mainstream smoke during a single year. Ever since its large scale industrial production early in this century, the popularity of the modern cigarette has been spreading like wildfire. Here is the first, and perhaps the most significant answer to the title question: Addiction is in a cigarette.

Probing into what makes a cigarette so irresistible, we find that much of the recent research corroborates earlier claims: It is for the nicotine in tobacco that the smoker smokes, the chewer chews, and the dipper dips. Hence, nicotine is in a cigarette.

In contrast to other drugs, nicotine delivery from tobacco carries an ominous burden of chemical poisons and cancer-producing substances that boggle the mind. Many toxic agents are in a cigarette. However, additional toxicants are manufactured during the smoking process by the chemical reactions occurring in the glowing tip of the cigarette. The number is staggering: more than 4,000 hazardous compounds are present in the smoke that smokers draw into their lungs and which escapes into the environment between puffs.

The burning of tobacco generates more than 150 billion tar particles per cubic inch, constituting the visible portion of cigarette smoke. According to chemists at R. J. Reynolds Tobacco Company, cigarette smoke is 10,000 times more concentrated than the automobile pollution at rush hour on a freeway. The lungs of smokers, puffing a daily ration of 20 to 60 low to high tar cigarettes, collect an annual deposit of one-quarter to one and one-half pounds of the gooey black material, amounting to a total of 15 to 90 million pounds of carcinogen-packed tar for the aggregate of current American smokers. Hence, tar is in a cigarette.

But visible smoke contributes only 5-8% to the total output of a cigarette. The remaining bulk that cannot be seen makes up the so-called vapor or gas phase of cigarette "smoke." It contains, besides nitrogen and oxygen, a bewildering assortment of toxic gases, such as carbon monoxide, formaldehyde, acrolein, hydrogen cyanide, and nitrogen oxides, to name just a few. Smokers efficiently extract almost 90% of the particulate as well as gaseous constituents (about 50% in the case of carbon monoxide) from the mainstream smoke of the 600 billion cigarettes consumed annually in the U.S. In addition, 2.25 million metric tons of sidestream smoke chemicals pollute the enclosed air spaces of homes, offices, conference rooms, bars, restaurants, and automobiles in this country. Hence, pollution is in a cigarette.

The witch's brew of poisons invades the organs and tissues of smokers and nonsmokers, adults and children, born as well as unborn, and causes cancer, emphysema, heart disease, fetal growth retardation and other problems during pregnancy. The harm inflicted by all other addictions combined pales in comparison. Smoking-related illness, for example, claims in a few days as many victims as cocaine does in a whole year. Hence, disease is in a cigarette.

The irony is that many of the poisons found in cigarette smoke are subject to strict regulation by federal laws which, on the other hand, specifically exempt tobacco products. "Acceptable Daily Intake," ADI, is the amount of a chemical an individual can be exposed to for an extended period without apparent detriment to health. A comparison of the actual intake of selected chemicals in mainstream smoke with their ADIs (see table below) reveals the enormity of toxic exposure incurred by the smoker (note the presence of methyl isocyanide, the toxicant of the Bhopal disaster).

In addition, there is the chemical burden from sidestream smoke, afflicting smokers and non-smokers alike. Based on the reported concentrations in enclosed, cigarette smoke-polluted areas, the estimated intakes of nicotine, acrolein, carbon monoxide, nitrogen dioxide and formaldehyde peak at 200, 130, 75, 7, and 3 times the ADI, respectively. The high exposure to acrolein is especially unsettling. This compound is not only a potent respiratory irritant, but qualifies, according to current studies, as a carcinogen.

Regulatory policy aims at restricting exposure to carcinogens to a level where the lifetime risk of cancer would not exceed 1 in 100,000 to 1,000,000. Due to a limited database, approximate upper lifetime risk values could be calculated for only 7 representative cigarette smoke carcinogens. The risk values were extraordinarily high, ranging from 1 in 6,000 to 1 in 16. Because of the awesome amount of carcinogens found in cigarette smoke and the fact that carcinogens combine their individual actions in an additive or even multiplicative fashion, it is not surprising that the actual risk for lung cancer is as high as one in ten. Hence, cancer is in a cigarette.

Among the worst offenders are the nitrosamines. Strictly regulated by federal agencies, their concentrations in beer, bacon, and baby bottle nipples must not exceed 5 to 10 parts per billion. A typical person ingests about one microgram a day, while the smokers' intake tops this by 17 times for each pack of cigarette smoked. In 1976, a rocket fuel manufacturer in the Baltimore area was emitting dimethylnitrosamine into the surrounding air, exposing the local inhabitants to an estimated 14 micrograms of the carcinogen per day. The plant was promptly shut down. However eagerly the government tries to protect us from outdoor pollution and the carcinogenic risk of consumer products, it blatantly suspends control if the offending chemical is in, or comes from, a cigarette. Hence, hypocrisy is in a cigarette.

But there is still more in a cigarette than addiction, poison, pollution, disease, and hypocrisy. A half century of aggressive promotion and sophisticated advertising that featured alluring role models from theater, film and sport, has invested the cigarette with an enticing imagery. Imagery which captivates and seduces a growing youngster. The youngster, indispensable for being recruited into the future army of smokers, does not start to smoke cigarettes for the nicotine, but for the false promises they hold. Hence, deceit is in a cigarette.

In summary, no drug ever ingested by humans can rival the long-term debilitating effects of tobacco; the carnage perpetuated by its purveyors; the merciless irreversibility of destiny once the victim contracts lung cancer or emphysema; the militant denial on the part of those who, with the support of stockholders and the sanction of governments, legally push their lethal merchandise across borders and continents killing every year two and one-half to three million people worldwide. All things added together: death is in a cigarette.

Ingredients added to cigarette products can result in exposure by inhalation, as opposed to their use in foods and beverages, where exposure is by ingestion. For some ingredients used in cigarettes, exposure may be to the pyrolysis products of these ingredients as opposed to exposure to the ingredient in its non-combusted state. Therefore, the regulatory status of ingredients as food components may not be completely applicable to their use in cigarettes. Such information should not be relied upon as a sole basis for a determination that use of an ingredient will not increase the health risks associated with cigarette smoking.

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Learn How To Quit Smoking

What do I mean by LEARN, shouldn't I be telling you to go buy some nicotine gum or some quit smoking NRT products. Hey! It's not that hard for anyone to stop smoking and NO you don't really need a pill, potion, patch or gum. As a matter of fact I believe you only need one thing to help you quit smoking and that's Knowledge, because knowledge is power.

Some historians claim that tobacco has been apart of our history since around 6000BC, however a little closer to our end of the time line in the pre-Columbian Americas the native Americans cultivated tobacco for ceremonial pipe smoking. Explorers like Christopher Columbus, Sir Walter Raleigh and France's Jean Nicot after whom nicotine was named began to popularize the use of tobacco as the new fashion throughout Europe. The process of smoking was learnt back in the early 16th century and it's still learnt the same way today. In the US every day 3000 new non-smoker kids become smokers! Each and every person has had to learn how to smoke.

You LEARNT how to become a smoker in the first place. You practised the draw-back and various smoking techniques over and over, including all those body image traits until you finally achieved that great `smoker status'. You convinced yourself how good and cool it was - right! You just taught yourself how to be a smoker even when the first few cigarettes nearly made you vomit.

You may be asking yourself right now, how can I learn how to stop smoking. The answer is easy, if you want to become a non-smoker, then you need to learn how to THINK as non-smoker. The reality is that gums, patches or NRT's won't change your smoker mindsets, knowledge and understanding is the key!

Listen ...'If you think the way you always thought, you'll have what you always had.'

Answer this... Who talks to you the most; your partner, your boss, your neighbour, your friends, your dog or cat? No Way......YOU TALK TO YOU THE MOST!!!

Nicotine Addiction is approximately 20% physiological and 80% psychological. Think about it, the chemical affect of the drug doesn't have to work very hard to keep you addicted because you will reinforce your perceived satisfaction with just about every cigarette through your thoughts and words.

The bottom line is this – the nicotine addiction IS NOT your friend or buddy, it's a lying parasite that basically wants to kill you. Have you ever wanted to quit smoking? Imagine the freedom of waking up every morning and thinking "I'm a non-smoker" now that's cool!

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Did you know that you can increase good health by making
sure that you get enough water? Yes plain water that has
been purified in some way. The water most of us get from the
tap is full of chemicals that is bad for our health. Do
not drink tap water, unless you have your own well, which
you know is not contaminated.

Drinking water is essential for a healthy body. Water regulates body
temperature, lubricates joints, keeps skin youthful and
muscles strong.

Water is present in every cell and tissue and involved in so
many biological functions: digestion, absorption,
circulation and excretion. It helps us with keeping our
hormones balanced and our brain chemistry Relies on water
for proper balance. Water gives us energy and strengthens
the immune system.

Most people are not drinking enough water and are semi
dehydrated. Your body cannot work at optimum level without
the water it needs.

What happens when you don't drink enough water?

I won't go into all the details, but do want to mention a
few things here. All the things mentioned above that water
helps keep in balance and lubricated are affected when you
don't drink water. You will not feel as well as you possibly
could, your body does not have what it needs for good health
and so your health declines.

Here is one example of what I mean: When you do not get
enough water throughout the day, your body just does not
have the needed fluid and sometimes tries to pull it from
where it can and distribute it to the places that need
hydration the most. One place that water is pulled from is
your digestive system. When you do not drink enough water it
leads to constipation.

As we all know, constipation is not a good thing. Besides
the uncomfortable, sick feeling there are other things going
on. Transit time slows down and some of the toxins and
poisons dumped into the digestive system begin to

If you do become constipated, I would suggest using Natural Moves. Natural Moves is a 100% natural, safe and effective herbal remedy to stop constipation naturally without risk of dehydration,
mineral imbalance or dependency.

Natural Moves Tablets can be used both for chronic and occasional constipation. The herbs used in Natural Moves promote healthy digestion and act as a good liver tonic, avoiding the risk of dependency and side effects associated with some other laxative products.

As these toxins build up they store in your tissues causing
ill health. Kidneys separate water from the waste in the
blood, so there is a strain put on them when toxicity
levels increase. Along with that the Liver then has quite a
bit more to do, trying to detoxify the system as a whole.

Drinking water is the most important drink you can consume for good health. With this being the case, I suggest that you drink
one quart of water for every 50 pounds of weight. So if you
weighed 150 pounds, you would need to drink 3 quarts of

I also find it best if a person will actually measure the
needed water out, into a container each day. Other wise
most people lose track of how much they did drink. So they
usually do not drink enough water for the day.

Why not put this information to use today? No matter where
your health is at this point, consuming drinking water in the required amount will aid you in reaching better health and maintaining it.

source :

What is Asthma?

by Susan Millar,

This article explains what everyone should know about asthma, asthma symptoms, asthma triggers and an asthma attack.

More than 17 million people in the US alone suffer from asthma, a serious lung ailment, resulting in 5,000 asthma deaths a year. Asthma is an allergic inflammation of the lungs, which is generally triggered by pollens, molds, dust, animal dander, air pollution, chemicals, exercise, temperature changes or ingestion of certain foods.

During an asthma attack the walls of the lungs become inflamed and the mucus membranes fill with fluid and thick, sticky mucus making it difficult to breathe. Asthma symptoms can include a scratchy throat, coughing, shortness of breath, wheezing and a tight feeling in the chest. An asthma attack can be mild, moderate or severe and lasting for a few minutes, hours, or even several days.

Knowing when to get emergency help for a severe attack can save your life. If you are experiencing the following, you should seek immediate medical attention:

* your medication does not control your symptoms
* you have extreme difficulty breathing, talking and walking,
* your fingernails or lips are turning blue,
* your chest feels tight and your ribs are pulled inward as you breathe,
* your nostrils flare when you breathe

The key to understanding and controlling asthma is to know yourself. One person may get a severe asthma reaction from a slight whiff of perfume, while another asthma sufferer has no reaction at all to the very same trigger. Everyone who suffers from asthma is unique and is effected differently, there are several variables to consider:

* asthma triggers and allergies
* living and work environment
* general state of health and immune system
* stress levels
* nutrition and diet
* geographical location and climate

Quite often things that we have eaten, used or are a part of our environment for years can suddenly become asthma triggers. Since there are so many variables involved that affect getting control of your asthma, the first thing you should do is keep a notebook or journal. This will help you pinpoint your triggers.
If you know your triggers and are tired of constantly puffing on inhalers, take a look at Dramatic Asthma Relief, a
safe, natural and rapid relief from asthma and allergies without
side effects. - Editors

Once you know what they are, you can either remove these triggers or reduce them as much as possible. For example, you may be allergic to your pet without even realizing it. My friend kept two cats for years. She often suffered from sinus congestion, but never connected it to the cats. Eventually she developed asthma, so she started to keep a journal and began to see a pattern - she eventually realized that every time she washed and groomed her cats, she had an asthma attack.

She was reluctant to admit her cats were contributing to her asthma since they were like her own children to her, but through her journal it became obvious that cat dander was a major trigger.

Since she really didn't want to get rid of her cats, she was able to take several measures to minimize her exposure to the cat dander. One of these was to take her cats to a pet groomer instead of doing it herself. This change, combined with a few other measures helped to prevent further asthma attacks.

Some people have both food and environmental triggers or allergies that they are unaware of. This can make determining specific triggers and controlling asthma symptoms much more complex, so keeping a journal is important.

If you find that you are feeling asthmatic after consuming some food or drink, one of those items could be the culprit, but since you have also eaten several things during the day, it's not always easy to know exactly what it was that caused the problem.

If you record details of everything that was eaten each time you experienced asthma symptoms, you'll see a pattern developing, which will help you to discover exactly what your trigger is. Once you determine your triggers, you can then start to eliminate them or minimize them as much as possible. This will help bring your asthma under control and help reduce your asthma symptoms. Combining these measures with a good diet, stress reduction and natural supplements that help eliminate asthma and allergy symptoms will ensure an active, healthy life.

source :

Diabetes Diet Mellitus Plan

Written by Peter Johnson,
Diabetes Diet Mellitus Plan - Search Results

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source :

Wild Blueberry’s Health Benefits

Friday, November 14, 2008

How would you like to feel younger, prevent disease and enhance your memory? You can improve in these areas by eating delicious blueberries.

Blueberries, especially wild blueberries, has the richest antioxidant content compared to most other food.

What are the potential long term benefits of the humble blueberry?

• Anti-Aging
• Disease Prevention
• Eyesight
• Cholesterol levels
• Urinary Tract
• Healthy Arteries
• Antioxidants
• Enhanced Memory
• Weight Control

Blueberries have been enjoyed by local Americans for many years. Besides their scientific health benefits, blueberries are sweet, delicious and convenient. They are often referred to as the “Super Fruit”. The blueberry family are native to North America and Eastern Asia.

Blueberry bushes are visually appealing with white blossoms in late spring. They are very green in summer and have abundant red foliage in the fall.

Want to fight off Alzheimer’s or improve your memory? Give blueberries another look. They are rich in valuable nutrients, low in sugar, healthy and they taste great!

Try to eat blueberries when they are in season. That’s when they taste best, plus they are nutritionally at their peak.

If you can’t find fresh berries you could try frozen. There are also some very good supplements around. Just pop a couple capsules, and you receive the benefits of a handful of blueberries. Of course they don’t taste as good.

Blueberries contain vitamin-C, potassium, iron and fiber. They are great for the brain, heart and stomach. Yes, blueberries are bursting with nutrients and flavor. You won’t have to worry about the calories too much either.

Let’s see now. Low calories, low fat, no cholesterol, no saturated fats, low in carbohydrates and sugars….. And they still taste great?

A number of detailed studies has shown blueberries to improve eyesight. This could be the anthocyanin in the blue pigment. They furthermore reduce the bad cholesterol which benefits the heart and arteries.

The scientific health benefits of blueberries are so powerful that many researchers are enjoying them in their diet. They also are highly recommending them for you.

Blueberries have one of the highest ORAC value of any other food. That’s Antioxidant power. Blueberries contain natural nutrients that are found in the skin of this blue fruit. The deep blue hue is the result of anthocyanins. The blueberries also contain proanthocyanins, a particular group of flavonoids, which are powerful free radical scavengers.

Wild blueberries contain more anthocyanins then the cultivated variety. If you want the best, then organic wild blueberries would be your prime choice.

Researchers have found blueberries to slow down the aging process. Their natural antioxidants and phytonutrients shield the nervous system from radiation and free radicals.

So go ahead and grab a handful of blueberries now and start munching on them. They taste great and are good for your head, heart, body and you.

source : 1thinkhealthy

A Healthy Back - Article

by Al Wadleigh & Jack Heggie

When you work at your desk or computer for long hours, you know that tension and stress in your neck, shoulder or back can be an obstacle to a productive, feel-good day. Most of us go through our work day and don't even notice how much stress and pain we've collected. We are unaware of our posture, how we are sitting, how much tension we are holding in our shoulders, how tight our necks are until it hurts too much. We wait until we are in pain before we take action to relieve it. Spending day after day with this kind of tension and stress can lead to chronic pain which can not only hinder your enjoyment of life and work, but can eventually require medical attention.

Relief is now available. Sports author, Jack Heggie, has developed A Healthy Back™ - a series of specially developed exercises that gently and effectively increase the range of motion and flexibility of the spine, which relieves that tension and stress. They are designed to be done while sitting in a chair at home or at work. No special clothing or equipment needed - just a few minutes and a chair. As a result, you look better, feel better and relax more fully.

Once you get to that point of it hurting too much a typical response is to address the pain with a pain stretching, reliever or eventually seeking help from a health care professional - which may be medical treatment, massage, a spinal adjustment, or some other intervention. Once the tension and pain is treated we feel better. But these measures most often provide temporary relief. If you take an aspirin it wares off; if you stretch it feels better but the stress quickly returns; if an intervention is made by a health professional - be it massage, a spinal adjustment, or stronger medication - you will tend to repeat those measures to continue to get relief from stress and pain. But we will continue to sit and move in the same ways we did before the treatment. Which simply re-creates the stress and pain.

"If you only treatment for pain is medication, then you're not really dealing with the cause," explains Dr. Bob Rountree of Helios Health Center in Boulder, Colorado. "A Healthy Back exercises address the source of the pain by naturally and easily re-educating your spine, joints and muscles to move together more efficiently." As a result, you release tension; your posture improves; you sit more comfortably; you move with greater ease - without effort!

According to Heggie, "We tend to move the same way over and over, only using a small percentage of our whole range of movement possibilities. If you work at your computer or desk for long hours and get tense, you'll tend to repeat that pattern of tension hour after hour, day after day - which is a reason for chronic tension and pain. But you can change those patterns by doing A Healthy Back exercises. You can discover new, more efficient patterns of movement."

Why is this? We tend to sit and move in habitual patterns. These habitual patterns were acquired over time without conscious intent. They developed outside our conscious awareness influenced in a number of ways - by modeling our parents' or a significant others' posture, emotions, activities and injuries. These habits, unchanged, can lead to tension and pain and even physical problems such as a scoliosis or a slipped disk.

Your posture is an automatic phenomena. You don't think your way into sitting better and be able to maintain that posture without continuing to think about it. The centers in the brain that run posture are not under your direct conscious control. You can't make yourself sit up straight and do it efficiently because you are actually trying to use the voluntary muscles and nerves which are not designed to hold you in one position for a long time. The muscles and nerves that maintain your posture are involuntary and outside your conscious awareness and control. What you will discover as you do these exercises is that they engage the involuntary nerves and muscles and your posture begins to change and you don't have to think about it - it just happens.

You literally look at things hundreds or thousands of times a day - you sit in front of your computer and stare at the screen, you look ahead when you drive or walk or you watch the television. Every time you look at something you are stiffening the muscles in your neck and shoulders without thinking about it. So if you sit for hours in front of your computer, you are sitting there stiffening the muscles in your neck and shoulders.

The idea behind these exercise is that we learn what we practice. If you work at your desk or computer in a posture that causes stress and pain, then you are practicing sitting in a chair causing yourself stress and pain. Or if you are pushing yourself to the maximum, and you sweat, strain and hurt yourself, then you get to be real good at sweating, straining and hurting yourself. But when you are learning, you will learn best by cultivating a feeling of ease. Which is why these exercises encourage slow, gentle movements. If you watch people who do almost anything well - especially in sports - you will see someone running very quickly or performing some kind of incredible feat yet the do it elegantly and easily.

A Healthy Backª exercises addresses those habits of sitting and moving. These exercises have been specifically developed to address the underlying patterns of sitting and moving that we've acquired unconsciously. These exercises work naturally and gently to re-educate the way you move and sit.

In a two-week test study, ten people ranging in age from their mid-20's to mid-60's with neck, shoulder and back pain ranging from frequent tension to chronic pain used the program. The average reported drop in pain after doing just one exercise was 48%. Participants averaged 40% reduction in pain over the two week period. Some participants experienced as much as a 72% reduction in pain by the end of the two weeks.

A Healthy Back was originally conceived for people who work at computers and desks all day. "But we found that many other people benefit from the tapes as well," says Al Wadleigh, executive producer. "Everyone from gardeners to golfers, business people to construction workers benefit from these exercises."

The exercises can be done almost anywhere anytime. But we recommend taking short breaks while you work and doing a portion of each exercise. As a result, you work more comfortably and productively. You don't get as tired and you feel better throughout the day.

Sitting in a Chair
How to build a foundation for good posture Have you ever noticed how you sit in a chair? Are you aware of how the placement of your feet effects how straight you sit? The fact is that a lot of us spend more time sitting in a chair than practically anything else-yet most everyone is unaware of how they do it. Try the following exercise:

1) Sit in a firm chair. As you sit there, stick your feet way out in front on the floor. Notice what the rest of your body does when you stick your feet out. Without really thinking about it you will find that you are leaning back against the chair. (See Fig. 1).

2) Now try pulling your feet in underneath the chair. You'll find that you sit up and actually lean forward a little bit. (See Fig. 2).

3) What you can see is there is a connection between the angle of the knee joint and the angle of the hip joint. They actually tend to reflect each other. If you stick your feet out so that the knee joint gets straighter, then you lean back and the hip joint tends to straighten out. If you pull your feet in underneath the chair so the knees are bent more than 90 degrees, then there's a tendency to lean forward. What we can get out of that is that if we put our feet right under our knees so that the knees are at right angles, then there's a tendency for the hips to be at a more or less right angle and that's the foundation for good posture. (See Fig. 3).

4) Pull your feet underneath your chair and try to sit in what feels like good posture. You'll find that there's a little effort required. It doesn't feel quite right. (See Fig. 4).

5) Straighten your knees and try to sit in what feels like good posture. You'll feel like there is some effort required then to keep the hips right. (See Fig. 5).

6) Now bend your knees at a right angle, then you tend to sit up straight. (See Fig. 6).

A Health Backª Exercise 2: Bending Forward and Back
Here is a sample of the second exercise of A Healthy Back
1 Notice how you are sitting. How does your body feel? Are you aware of any aches or pains?

2 Look up and down. Notice how far you look up and how far you look down. How much of your body is involved in the movement?

3 Interlace your fingers and put your hands behind your head. Gently and slowly lower your head and bend forward and then raise your head and look up. Move your eyes along with the movement so that when you head moves up your eyes look up and when your head moves down your eyes look down. Do this movement 12-15 times. Notice that your spine, ribs and shoulder get involved in the movement.

4 Unlace you fingers, put your hands in your lap and rest for a minute.

5 Interlace you fingers and place your hands behind your head and gently and slowly bend forward and back about 6 times. As you bend forward and back move your eyes along with the movement.

6 Continue bending forward and back and as you do, move your eyes in the opposite direction. Do this movement about 12 times. You will probably find that as you first start to move the eyes in the opposite direction that it interferes with the movement. Which means that the eyes work against the movement of the torso. Which is part of the cause of tension in the body.

7 Continue bending forward and back and move the eyes with the movement about 6 times.

8 Then move the eyes in the opposite direction another 6 times.

9 Unlace your fingers and place your hands in your lap and rest. Now look up and down and notice how far you look. You will also notice that more of your body is involved in the movement. At first when you looked up and down you probably moved mostly just you head and neck. And now you will find that your spine, pelvice, ribs and shoulder are getting involved in the movement. The parts of your body are starting to work together instead of working against each other and you begin to get rid of more tension and stress.

source :

What Causes Depression?

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Recognize Your Risk Factors
By Nicole Nichols, Health Educator

Although a challenging life event, such as the death of a loved one or financial hardship, can trigger depressive episodes, the causes of depression are complex and overlapping. There are two main categories of risks that can contribute to depression—those that you can't change, and those that you can.

Uncontrollable Risk Factors
These variables are out of your control. Although you can't do anything to change them, it's important to know whether you fall into any of these higher-risk categories.

* Your family history. Depression appears to have a genetic component. You are more likely to experience depression if one of your parents also suffered from depression. If both parents had depression, your risk of developing it is twice as high.
* Your gender. Women are twice as likely to experience depression as men. Experts believe this is due to fluctuating hormone levels that women experience throughout life.
* Your age. While you may think that the risk of developing depression increases with age, that's not the always the case. In fact, studies show that the elderly are more likely to be happy and content with their lives than their younger counterparts. Depression can occur at any age (even in children), but it is most common in people between the ages of 24 and 44.
* Your health history. Chronic health conditions such as disability, heart disease, hypothyroidism, stroke, cancer, diabetes, multiple sclerosis (MS), and Parkinson’s disease can lead to depression. A history of depression also increases your risk for future episodes.
* Psychosocial factors. Depression is more common in people who have a history of trauma, abuse (sexual, physical or emotional), neglect, alcoholism, drug addiction, and insufficient family structure.
* Environmental factors. Chronic depression occurs more often in people who live in areas afflicted with war, natural disasters, and poverty. Seasonal depression is most common in high latitudes with extreme seasonal changes.
* Life changes. The loss of a loved one, conflicts with others, losing or starting a new job, the end of a relationship, retirement, moving to a new city and more—many life events can trigger depressive episodes.

While you can’t change things like family history or your environment, you can control certain factors related to your lifestyle—the choices you make each day about what to eat and how to care for yourself. These are areas of your life where you can take proactive steps to help prevent and treat depression and enhance your overall health.

Controllable Risk Factors

* Your diet. Food can affect your mood. A diet too low in iron, healthy carbohydrates, and calories can cause symptoms of depression. Eating plenty of calories, whole grain carbohydrates, Omega-3 fatty acids, and iron-rich foods can improve symptoms. Learn how to eat well when dealing with depression.
* Your activity level. Inactive people tend to have higher stress levels, difficulty sleeping, anxiety, and mood swings. Regular exercise produces “feel good” chemicals in the brain, enhancing the benefits of antidepressant medications, and producing similar results. Learn more about exercising to relieve depression.
* Your alcohol & drug use. For many, depression and substance abuse are closely connected. Alcohol and illicit drugs can interact with medications, worsen depression and its symptoms, and prevent recovery. If you think you have a problem with drugs or alcohol, seek help.
* Your sleeping patterns. Changes in your sleeping habits and the quality of your sleep can be closely related to your mood. A lack of sleep can cause many symptoms similar to those of depression. Get tips for better shut-eye.
* Your medications. Several types of medications can cause depression. If you think your medication may be contributing to your symptoms, talk to your doctor about finding an alternative medication for your condition that doesn't have this negative side effect.
* Your stress levels. People with uncontrolled, chronic stress are more prone to developing depression. Taking time to relax and relieve stress through exercise, meditation, yoga or other techniques can help.

While lifestyle changes alone cannot treat depression, talk with your health care provider if you think the factors above may be affecting your mood, thoughts and behavior. Every small lifestyle change you can make, in conjunction with the treatment plan laid out by your doctor, can improve your overall health and help enhance the effectiveness of medical interventions.

source :

Protein Packs a Punch

(Family Features) Resolved to get healthy? It's no secret that counting calories and exercising keep us fit. But those steps are just part of the equation. Picking up enough proteins during the day can be just as important as doubling up with the dumbbells. Experts agree that protein is a secret weapon for fueling a healthy lifestyle, maintaining weight and warding off colds and flu.

Protein isn't stored in the body like fats or carbohydrates, so getting enough of it throughout the day, even between meals, is key. For a quick snack or energy boost, consider incorporating nutrient-rich beverages into your diet as a way to boost vitamin and mineral intake.

"High protein snacks and nutritional beverages can play an important role in managing a healthy lifestyle - whether you're an elite athlete or a casual exerciser trying to maintain your weight with smart eating and physical activity," says Dr. Marcus Elliott, who works with world-class athletes, and sports teams like the New England Patriots and the Utah Jazz. Elliott adds that eating right and maintaining energy levels with adequate protein is essential for staving off stress and enjoying a healthy life. He says that bolstering well-being begins with taking life one day at a time to manage stress.

Elliott offers these seven simple steps to follow for healthy living:

* Eliminate worry. Focus on real, immediate issues, and try to tune out imaginary situations and those out of your control.
* Get away. Make it a habit to "step out" for 10 to 15 minutes daily. Find a quiet spot to be alone and restore your inner peace.
* Write or talk it out. Journaling or sharing thoughts with friends can help alleviate stress by expelling feelings on paper or in discussion.
* Eat healthy and get enough protein. Drinking a nutrient-rich beverage like ZOIC provides a convenient way to get all the nutrients you need during a busy day.
* Move it! Because exercise is one of the most effective stress relievers, take a brisk walk during lunch break or stretch a few times throughout the day-make every movement count.
* Be positive. Curb complaints; focus on positive outcomes and help reduce tension by focusing on small daily goals.
* Laugh it off. Humor is an effective means for coping with stress. Laughing helps provide perspective, reduces tension and is great for the heart.

Nutritional beverage ZOIC is formulated to provide an optimal mix of 21 grams of high- quality protein, 26 vitamins and minerals, antioxidants and dietary fiber. Each serving provides only 110 calories, no added sugar and is 99 percent fat free. ZOIC is certified as heart-healthy with the American Heart Association's heart-check mark, indicating it meets the organization's criteria for saturated fat and cholesterol for healthy people over age 2. ZOIC is also qualified under the FDA Heart Health Claim.

ZOIC is available in French Vanilla and Belgian Chocolate flavors, and is sold in 4-packs in the health, nutrition and beauty care aisles at most major retailers nationwide. For more information, visit

source :

Causes and Cures for Acne

Teens are not the only ones prone to developing breakouts in their lifetime. Bodybuilders and even adults are now finding themselves washing their faces three or four times a day to try ridding themselves of the horrible phenomena known as acne. This article will explain the basics of acne and give you cost-cutting information for those wanting to have clearer skin. You will learn what acne is, how it is formed, and common topicals, cleansers, and supplements used to fight it.

Millions of people suffering from acne want to know one question, "How are these stupid zits formed anyways?" One major cause of acne is an over production of an oil known as sebum. This oil is combined with dead skin cells, causes the oil to be contained within your hair follicles, and causes acne. Another reason you may have acne is that acne problems are genetical. This means that if your parents had acne, then chances are good that you have had or will have acne problems as well. You can take healthy steps to achieving clearer skin by shaving every day, washing your face more often, watching your diet, and using topicals, cleaners, and supplements to help clear your acne.

There are several topicals and cleansers you can purchase without a prescription. Most of the products you use contain ingredients such as benzoyl peroxide, salicylic acid, and sulfer and hydroxy acids, which all help at treating moderate acne. If your acne is more severe, then you may want to schedule an appointment with a dermatologist. You will most likely be prescribed Brevoxyl, Accutane, or Retin-A Micro, but be careful if you are prescribed Accutane. Accutane will clear your acne no matter how severe it is, but all the side effects it brings will make you wonder if the results are even worth it.

If you decide to not waste as much money seeing a dermatologist and want to try clearing your acne on your own, you can purchase many supplements that have positive effects on your skin. Products such as Zinc, Vitamin A,C, and E, ALA, Selenium, Niacin, and fatty acids such as Omega 6 and Omega 3`s combined with the proper topicals and cleansers should leave your skin looking how you want it to look. If these methods don`t help after a couple of weeks, then I highly recommend that you see a dermotologist, no matter what the cost is.

Acne is a severe skin disease that affects millions of people. It can lead to depression, leave you with a low self-esteem, and keep you from doing things you want to do. If you currently have acne, it`s not the end of the world. You need to sit down and think what you are going to do to fight. You need to take one day at a time and not get upset when you`re not seeing the results you want right away. You also shouldn`t pick at them either because picking at them can make the clearing process take longer and can even leave scars when you`re older. Just be patient and let time do its thing. Clearer skin is just around the corner. Until next time, later.

source :

By: Peter Sams

Look for chances to be more active during the day. Walk the mall before shopping, choose a flight of stairs over an escalator, or take 10-15 minute walking breaks while watching TV or sitting for some other activity.

Start slowly. Gradually build up to at least 30 minutes of activity, five or more times per week (or whatever your doctor recommends). If you don't have a full 30 minutes, try two 15-minute sessions or three 10-minute sessions to meet your goal. Note your activities on a calendar or in a logbook. Write down the distance or length of time of your activity and how you feel after each session. If you miss a day, plan a make-up day or add 10-15 minutes to your next session.

What we are unaware of is that, we have the ability and the capability, to potentially eradicate, eliminate, and do away with the greatest killer amongst us. Scientifically we are advancing and learning more and more that through minor changes in our lifestyles, attitudes, diets, activities and exercises we have the ability to achieve heart health, and conquer and defeat our greatest medical threat. Cardiovascular or aerobic steady physical activity using large muscle groups. This type of exercise strengthens the heart and lungs and improves the body's ability to use oxygen. Aerobic exercise has the most benefits for your heart. Over time, aerobic exercise can help decrease your heart rate and blood pressure at rest and improve your breathing.

Stretching slow lengthening of the muscles. Stretching the arms and legs before and after exercising helps prepare the muscles for activity and helps prevent injury and muscle strain. Regular stretching also increases your range of motion and flexibility.

Breathing into Your Heart-Fear contracts the heart, closing it down. Breathing into the heart expands it, making space for new feelings and experiences. Before you begin, connect with your heart and notice its size and how it feels. Take about two minutes to consciously breathe into your heart, feeling it expand with each breath. Now check in again with your heart. How has your experience of your heart changed?

Join an exercise group, health club or YMCA. Many churches and senior centers offer exercise programs, too. Anxiety and stress cause heart problems and high blood pressure. But take heed, moderate regular exercise is a great stress reliever. Endorphins the feel good chemicals are released during exercise. Exercise can reduce the amount of insulin diabetics need. It can also reduce your risk of getting diabetes. Diabetes can lead to heart disease.

Your heart is a muscle. The heart needs conditioning and strengthening just like any other muscle. Any kind of stress to the heart can impair its function. Aerobic exercise will lower your number of heartbeats per minute. This is good because as the heart is strengthened each heartbeat will push more blood. The heart becomes more efficient. Elite athletes have very low resting heart rates.

Drink a cup of water before, during and after exercising (but check with the doctor, because some people need to limit their fluid intake). Read about Herbal Natural Home Remedies and Girls Discussion Forum. Also read about Beauty and Make up Tips

source :

Dangers of Your Morning Shower

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

You wouldn't knowingly bathe in toxins every morning, or
set out to harm your lungs and sinuses, irritate your
allergies and skin, or willingly increase your risk of cancer.
But the fact is, chlorine and its by-products in your shower
water are toxins which can damage your health.

These toxins are:

Chlorine: Added to most municipal water supplies, this
disinfectant hardens arteries, destroys proteins in the body,
irritates skin and sinus conditions, and aggravates asthma,
allergies, and respiratory problems.

Chloroform: This powerful by-product of chlorination
causes excessive free-radical formation (accelerated aging),
normal cells to mutate, and cholesterol to oxidize. It's a
known carcinogen!

DCA (Dichloro acetic acid): This chlorine by-product alters
cholesterol metabolism and has been shown to cause liver
cancer in lab animals.
MX (another chlorinated acid): Another by-product of
chlorination, MX is known to cause genetic mutations that
can lead to cancer growth and has been found in all
chlorinated water for which it was tested.

Research indicates an increased risk for bladder and rectal
cancer from drinking chlorinated water. And even though
you're not drinking water in the shower, you can absorb
many times more chlorine in a shower than you do by
drinking the same water! Tests show that your body can
absorb more chlorine as a result of a 10-minute shower
than if you drank eight glasses of the same water.

How can that be? A warm shower opens up your pores,
causing your skin to act like a sponge. As a result, you not
only inhale the chlorine vapors, you also absorb them
through your skin, directly into your bloodstream-at a rate
that's up to six times higher than drinking.

Short terms risks include skin, eye or sinus irritation in some
people. Long term risks include oxidation (cell and tissue
aging), hardened arteries, increased risk of cancer, and
hardened arteries. In addition, if you suffer from any of the
following, chlorinated water can make your condition worse:

sinus conditions
skin rashes

The good news is that showering in chlorine-treated water
is a risk you can erase immediately, through the use of a
proper shower filter. Be sure to choose a shower filter with
KDF medium, a powerful chlorine absorbant.

According to Dr. Francis T. Mayo, Director of the Municipal
Environmental Research Laboratory,
"Since chlorine is required by public health regulations
to be present in all public drinking water supplies, it is up to
the individual to remove it at the point-of-use in the home."

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Are You Still Smoking?

Usually, it is very difficult to quit smoking. At least for the most of the people. Maybe it is difficult to find a good reason to stop smoking
. OK, then why don't we find a lot of reasons to quit smoking?

Let's try to understand why you are smoking and what impact it makes on your life.

* Psychological aspect is probably the strongest reason for smoking. From physiological point of view you do not have any reason to start smoking. There is no any ingredient that will support your nutrition. But still, you find many reasons to smoke. You smoke since you consider that some kind of pleasure. You smoke to calm your self, or to cut the time while you waiting for something. But at the end, you are only smoking because you are used to it. Simply you do not smoke for pleasure, but in order not to have a smoker's crisis. Is that "pleasure" really worth of your time, health and money? Do you really enjoy in every cigarette smoked, or simply you can not be in idle mode for a moment without a smoke?

* Physiological effect of smoking does not exist in any positive way while you smoke. But negative effects do exist if you try to quit smoking. How pathetic, you have no physiological benefits for starting with smoking, but you have negative effects of nicotine crisis, if you do not smoke. Despite that, you still want to inhale smoke and pretend that you feel pleasure, although you don't? By the way, is it fun to make your body to age at accelerated rate?

* Social aspect is strong, since during a whole life you have somebody, who also smokes, to give you reason for smoking. It starts with first cigarettes with friends while you are adolescent and continues a whole life. You have always a good reason to smoke, since it connects you with the people that surround you. OK, but what about the people that do not smoke? They need to endure the torture from smokers, only because they are in your vicinity. If you do not care about your health, than why don't you at least respect non-smokers that surround you?

* Financial aspect of smoking habit is having a huge impact in your life. If you are an average smoker, who spend €5 per day, it is easy to figure out that you burning money literally. If you smoke 40 years, your pleasure ( or just a plain addiction ) will cost you € 73.000, without any interest. Furthermore, if you invest annually equivalent amount of money with only 5% of interest rate ( you can get even more, but due to inflation let assume that this is minimal interest ), you are wasting the € 231.483. A small fortune. Now imagine yourself with that amount of money in one hand and box of matches in another hand. Would be a really stupid to lit the money and to burn them away?

But since you are the smoker, you are actually burning that money. It does not matter that you burn money slowly, you are still burning it. What do you feel about the fact that you are wasting so much money on something that is probably more habit than a pleasure? Is your creativeness for spending money limited to burning them? Now, try to question yourself about reasons of why you still smoke. Try to understand all things that you consider to be a positive and those that are really negative to yourself while smoking. Is it really that important for you to keep breathing in fumes of burned tobacco leaves while trying to pretend that you enjoy? Try to imagine all benefits that you will have if you quit smoking. You will be healthier, you will not have a bad smell and you will be wealthier.

Are you still smoking?

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Gain Weight the Healthy Way

Monday, November 10, 2008

Nowadays it seems like everyone is looking for a solution to weight loss. But if you’re reading this health article, you might actually be looking for a solution to the opposite problem: You want to know how to gain weight and build muscle in a healthy manner without having to resort to harmful drugs or expensive weight gain supplements that don’t work.

In a nutshell, weight gain can be achieved with the combination of good nutrition and a consistent weight training program. When it comes to nutrition, it’s essential to have a combination of protein, carbohydrates, and good fats if you want to add weight. Proteins are necessary, because they repair and rebuild muscles after a workout. The average person should take in 1/2 gram of protein per pound of body weight to be healthy. But if you want to gain weight, you should consume about 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight. Red meat, eggs, fish, poultry are great sources of protein that also provide important amino acids that aid in healthy weight gain.

And don’t leave out the carbohydrates, which the body stores in the muscle tissues and liver in the form of glucose. When your body needs energy, it turns to these stored carbs for fuel. If you don’t have enough carbohydrates, your body will convert protein into carbohydrates to get energy, thereby robbing your body of the proteins it needs to help you gain weight.

Carbohydrates are comprised of three types: simple, complex and dietary fiber. Simple carbohydrates can be obtained from sources like fruit juices; complex carbohydrates come from potatoes, oats, brown rice, whole grains and pasta; and dietary fiber comes from vegetables such as sweet corn, black beans and broccoli, among many others. The best approach is to get your calories from eating raw foods, but this is not always possible for people who have trouble gaining weight. For them, meal replacements can be important tools.

To implement a weight gain program, it’s imperative that you eat several smaller meals a day rather than three larger meals. Why is this important? Because as the frequency of meals increases, so will nutrient absorption rates. More frequent nutrient delivery also means your body will be in a better position to regulate insulin levels, which factor into weight gain. The problem is that if you’re like most people, you probably don’t have time to prepare six meals a day. Meal replacements, which are commonly referred to as as MRPs (meal replacement powders), can provide a solution.

As the name suggests, MRPs are supplements that replicate the effect of having eaten a meal. MRPs don’t do anything more than a good, healthy meal; they just make eating more convenient and portable. You might think MRPs would be a grim and tasteless option. But the good news is that as more people have used and become knowledgeable about them, they have forced nutrition companies to come up with palatable products that really work. Quality MRP brands like Prolab, EAS, Met-Rx and Optimum Nutrition not only taste good; they contain an assortment of vital proteins and vitamins. (That’s not always the case with MRPs you find in the grocery store, so buyer beware.) You don’t need a kitchen to prepare an MRP; all you need is water or juice and a shaker. It’s almost like having a personal chef who provides nutritional meals at your command, any time of the day.

There are a few things to consider before you head out to the store and buy your first can of MRP. By far the most important criteria is the taste. No matter how nutritious it is, if you don’t like how it tastes, it isn’t going to help you. Next are the upgrades. Beware of companies that add extra whey protein or glutamine because these are rip-offs.

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By Dr. Ralph Moss

from Newsletter #68 01/09/03

In a recent study from North Carolina, drinking just one can (5.5 ounces) per day of the popular vegetable drink, V-8, raised levels of lycopene in the lungs by 12 percent. It also decreased ozone-induced DNA damage to the lungs by 20 percent.

Like beta-carotene, lycopene is a member of the carotenoid family, a group of colorful plant compounds that are potent antioxidants. But lycopene is more than just a lung protectant. Evidence continues to accumulate that this phytonutrient has powerful anticancer properties.

Studies have shown that people who eat lots of tomatoes and tomato products have less prostate cancer. For instance, in 1995, the Physicians' Health Study found a one-third reduction in prostate cancer risk in the group of men with the highest consumption of tomato products compared to the group with the lowest consumption. The authors attributed this protective effect to the lycopene content of tomatoes.

A recent clinical trial from Detroit suggests that lycopene is also powerful medicine for men who already have prostate cancer. This trial, from the Karmanos Cancer Institute at Wayne State University, looked at the impact of short-term lycopene supplements on men who were facing surgery for newly diagnosed prostate cancer. The 26 patients in this study were randomly assigned to receive either a tomato extract (containing 30 milligrams of lycopene) or no supplement for 3 weeks before undergoing radical prostatectomy.

Men who received the lycopene supplement had lower prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels and less aggressive tumors than the non-supplemented control group. Their tumors were smaller (80 percent of the tumors were under 4 milliliters (ml) in volume, compared to 45 percent in the control group). Their cancer was much more likely to be within the surgical margins and/or confined to the prostate gland (73 percent, compared to 18 percent of the control group). And the invasion of the prostate gland by cancer-like "PIN" cells was completely prevented in this group, compared to a 33 percent incidence of "PIN" cells in the control group.

"This pilot study suggests that lycopene may have beneficial effects in prostate cancer," concluded researcher Omer Kucuk, MD, and colleagues. They called for larger clinical trials "to investigate the potential preventive and/or therapeutic role of lycopene in prostate cancer."

Lycopene may also help prevent liver cancer, according to findings from a study presented at the American Association for Cancer Research meeting in October 2002. Hoyoku Nishino, MD, of the Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine, Japan, presented the results of this five-year clinical study examining the protective role of lycopene and other nutrients in people at high risk of liver cancer. There was a 50 percent decrease in hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC or liver cancer) in participants who daily consumed 10 milligrams of tomato lycopene plus other tomato phytonutrients, 10 milligrams of carotenes (30 percent alpha, 60 percent beta-carotene), and 50 milligrams of alpha-tocopherols and another form of vitamin E, tocotrienols. These results suggest that a mixture of natural tomato extract, carotenes and vitamin E has clinical promise.

Skeptics at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) say that "the evidence is weak that lycopene is associated with a reduced risk [of prostate cancer] because previous studies were not controlled for total vegetable intake (i.e., separating the effect of tomatoes from vegetables in general)." They therefore state that "specific dietary supplementation with lycopene remains to be demonstrated to reduce prostate cancer risk." This statement appears on the NCI's Prostate Cancer Prevention web page, which was updated in September 2002. However, it does not reference the Detroit study or any scientific article presented or published after January 2000.

Why Wait?

Few scientists doubt that a high intake of fruits and vegetables can decrease the rate of prostate and other forms of cancer, and it is surprising, but not implausible, that stepping up vegetable consumption could downgrade malignancies, even in just one month. The results reported from the Karmanos Center and elsewhere are very exciting. Any patient facing cancer would certainly want to see these dramatic effects on his or her malignancy. The main scientific question seems to be whether these changes are caused by lycopene itself or by some other nutrients in vegetables.

But why wait till researchers unravel these scientific mysteries? Given their many benefits, I suggest that you step up your intake of tomato products and other antioxidant-rich foods. As the North Carolina study demonstrates, just one small can of V-8 juice per day will raise lycopene levels in the lungs by 12 percent. In a two-week study at Ohio State University, blood lycopene levels were raised 192 percent by a daily serving of tomato sauce, 122 percent by tomato soup, and 92 percent by V-8 juice.

If you eat some tomato products every day and then supplement that with natural carotenes and vitamin E you will get the desired effects. While V-8 is rich in lycopene (it represents 88 percent of all the carotenoids in this juice), I would favor an organic version of the same mixture from the natural foods market. Also, keep in mind that there is more lycopene in cooked tomato products than in fresh tomatoes, and the absorption of lycopene by the body is enhanced by the presence of fat or oil. (This is probably the health rationale for the Italian custom of dribbling olive oil over fresh tomatoes.)

Lycopene supplements (such as Lyc-O-Mato) are another option. However, with tomato products so readily available, it seems unnecessary to add another pill to your daily regimen. As I wrote in Antioxidants Against Cancer (2000), the best source of antioxidants remains the high-quality organic foods that you consume in your daily diet.

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Making The Perfect Healthy Meal

Sunday, November 9, 2008

If you had to make the perfect meal what would the criteria be?
Would taste be the main factor or convenience - What about cost?

How about nutritional value? Is that a prerequisite?

If you had to develop the cheapest, healthiest, tastiest, most convenient meal - What would it be. I think I have an answer.

There are many foods that fall into 1 or 2 categories, some are healthy and some are tasty . Some are both economical and convenient, but it is very hard to find any meal that would rate more than 5/10 in each category.

This next meal that I have devised rates:

Taste 8/10

Price 8/10

Health 10/10

Convenience 9.5/10

So what is the magic formula……well, it’s a health shake.

It’s not one of those packet protein shakes that are packed with awful fillers and chemical, no, this one you have to make yourself - Notice I gave it 9.5/10 for convenience not 10/10. You have to do something.

What you will need?

For one shake you will need:

1 & 1/2 cups of oat milk

1 scoop of W.P.I protein powder (whey protein isolate)

2 tablespoons of blueberries

artificial sweetener to taste

sprinkle of cinnamon and nut meg

2 tablespoons of mixed berry yogurt

1 teaspoon of inulin

1 teaspoon of flaxseed oil

Now proceed to blend these ingredients in the blender until smooth and enjoy.

This meal has the perfect balance of low glycemic carbohydrates, s dietary fiber, high quality proteins, vitamins and minerals, antioxidants, good bacteria and essential fatty acids - Perfect

This meal is very reasonable in price to afford.

This shake is easy to prepare and can be made in 2 minutes.

This shake is absolutely delicious and you’ll be happy to have this 2-3 times a day.

The good news is that if you consume this shake 2-3 times per day your health, vitality and waistline will all be in appreciation.

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Gestational Diabetes

By: Sarah Gaskin

When my sister told me she had gestational diabetes it was the first I had ever heard of this medical condition. I was really concerned for her health and what could happen to her unborn child. I did a little research and found out that is was actually pretty common in pregnant women and normally disappears after the baby is born.

When I mentioned to friends and colleagues that my sister had gestational diabetes I was surprised by how many people told me they also had suffered with this condition. Most of the people I spoke with seemed to have controlled it with a change of diet. My sister wasn’t that lucky. She had to monitor her blood sugar and give herself insulin shots.

Gestational diabetes is the most common complication during pregnancy, which affects 2-3 percent of pregnant women.[1] When you eat food, your body converts it to glucose and it enters your bloodstream. Your pancreas releases insulin to help convert the glucose into fuel for your body. If your body cannot produce enough insulin to convert the glucose into energy the glucose remains in the bloodstream, which is known as high blood sugar and is referred to as Diabetes. Gestational diabetes unlike normal diabetes is just for the period of time you are pregnant and disappears once the baby is born.

With a healthy diet and exercise gestational diabetes can normally be controlled. On the rare occasion you may have to administer insulin shots. My sister had fun during her pregnancy testing her blood sugar regularly and giving herself insulin shots. Towards the end of the pregnancy she was tired of the shots and was extremely happy when the doctor told her she could stop with the shots after her daughter was born.

My sister just had her second child and again dealt with gestational diabetes during her pregnancy. Normally once you’ve experienced gestational diabetes with one pregnancy you are more likely to endure it again during your next pregnancy.

There are some factors that can make you more at risk for gestational diabetes, which include:

* Obesity
* Family history of Type 2 diabetes
* Gestational diabetes in a previous background
* Smoking

The risk of getting gestational diabetes also increases as you get older. During pregnancy you will be tested at about 26-28 weeks and if the preliminary test is positive then a Glucose Tolerance test will probably be done. If you are at higher risk to get gestational diabetes you will often be tested earlier in your pregnancy.

Many people have normal births without complications with gestational diabetes. There are a few extra tests and monitoring that are done depending on the severity of the gestational diabetes. Some women will have a caesarean section because having high blood sugar can cause the baby to grow too large for a normal delivery.

After giving birth the gestational diabetes normally disappears. Your blood sugar will be tested on the occasion to make sure everything is back to normal. Your newborn will also be checked as some babies can be born with low blood sugar.

Good diet and a healthy lifestyle can help reduce your chances of getting Gestational diabetes so when you are thinking of getting pregnant be sure to take extra care of yourself for the sake of your own health and the health of your baby.

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