BE AWARE OF RAYNAUD’S DISEASE!

Raynaud’s disease is a condition that causes some areas of your body — such as your fingers, toes, the tip of your nose and your ears — to feel numb and cool in response to cold temperatures or stress. In Raynaud’s disease, smaller arteries that supply blood to your skin narrow, limiting blood circulation to affected areas.
Women are more likely to have Raynaud’s disease. It’s also more common in people who live in colder climates.
Treatment of Raynaud’s disease depends on its severity and whether you have any other health conditions. For most people, Raynaud’s disease is more a nuisance than a disability.
Raynaud’s disease is more than simply having cold hands and cold feet, and it’s not the same as frostbite. Signs and symptoms of Raynaud’s depend on the frequency, duration and severity of the blood vessel spasms that underlie the disorder. Raynaud’s disease symptoms include:
-Cold fingers and toes
-Sequence of color changes in your skin
in response to cold or stress
-Numb, prickly feeling or stinging pain upon warming or relief of stress
During an attack of Raynaud’s, affected areas of your skin usually turn white at first. Then, the affected areas often turn blue, feel cold and numb, and your sense of touch is dulled. As circulation improves, the affected areas may turn red, throb, tingle or swell. The order of the changes of color isn’t the same for all people, and not everyone experiences all three colors.
Occasionally, an attack affects just one or two fingers or toes. Attacks don’t necessarily always affect the same digits. Although Raynaud’s most commonly affects your fingers and toes, the condition can also affect other areas of your body, such as your nose, lips, ears and even nipples. An attack may last less than a minute to several hours.
People who have Raynaud’s accompanied by another disease will likely also have signs and symptoms related to their basic underlying condition.






WHAT TO DO IN A HEART ATTACK EMERGENCY?

If you encounter someone who is unconscious from a presumed heart attack, call for emergency medical help. If you have received training in emergency procedures, begin cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). This helps deliver oxygen to the body and brain.
According to guidelines by the American Heart Association, regardless of whether you’ve been trained, you should begin CPR with chest compressions. Press down about 2 inches (5 centimeters) on the person’s chest for each compression at a rate of about 100 a minute. If you’ve been trained in CPR, check the person’s airway and deliver rescue breaths after every 30 compressions. If you haven’t been trained, continue doing only compressions until help arrives.
Sudden cardiac arrest during a heart attack is commonly caused by a deadly heart rhythm in which the heart quivers uselessly (ventricular fibrillation). Without immediate treatment, ventricular fibrillation leads to death. The timely use of an automated external defibrillator (AED), which shocks the heart back into a normal rhythm, can provide emergency treatment before a person having a heart attack reaches the hospital. But, if you’re alone, it’s important to continue chest compressions. If there’s a second person present, that person can look for a nearby AED.






THOSE HORRIBLE NIGHTMARES!

Nightmares are disturbing dreams associated with negative feelings, such as anxiety or fear. Nightmares are common. They may begin in childhood and tend to decrease after about age 10. However, some people have them as teens or adults, or throughout their lives.
Until age 13, boys and girls have nightmares in equal numbers. At age 13, nightmares become more prevalent in girls than boys.
Nightmares seem real, often becoming more disturbing as the dream unfolds. But nightmares usually are nothing to worry about. They may become a problem if you have them frequently and they cause you to fear going to sleep or keep you from sleeping well.
Nightmares are referred to by doctors as parasomnias — undesirable experiences that occur during sleep, usually during the stage of sleep known as rapid eye movement (REM). You’ve had a nightmare if:
-Your dream wakes you
-You feel scared, anxious, angry, sad or disgusted as a result of your dream
-You can think clearly upon awakening, and can recall details of your dream
-Your dream occurs near the end of your sleep time
-Your dream keeps you from falling back to sleep easily
Children’s nightmare content varies with age, typically becoming more complex. While a young child might dream of monsters, an older child might have nightmares about school or difficulties at home.






WHAT CAN YOU EXPECT OF A HOLTER EXAM?

Holter monitoring is painless and noninvasive. You can hide the electrodes and wires under your clothes, and you can wear the recording device on your belt or attached to a strap. Once your monitoring begins, don’t take the Holter monitor off — you must wear it at all times, even while you sleep.
While you wear a Holter monitor, you can carry out your usual daily activities. Your doctor will tell you how long you’ll need to wear the monitor. It may vary from 24 to 48 hours, depending on what condition your doctor suspects you have or how frequently you have symptoms of a heart problem. A wireless Holter monitor can work for weeks.
You’ll be asked to keep a diary of all your daily activities while you’re wearing the monitor. Write down what activities you do and exactly what time you do them. You should also write down any symptoms you have while you’re wearing the monitor, such as chest pain, shortness of breath or skipped heartbeats.
Your doctor can compare data from the Holter monitor recorder with your diary, which can help diagnose your condition.
After the procedure-
Once your monitoring period is over, you’ll go back to your doctor’s office to return the Holter monitor. A nurse or technician will remove the electrodes from your chest, which may cause some discomfort similar to an adhesive bandage being pulled off your skin.
You’ll turn in the diary you kept while you wore the Holter monitor. When the Holter monitor is interpreted, your doctor will compare the data from the recorder and the activities and symptoms you wrote down.






EXERCISES FOR ERECTILE DYSFUNCTION

The benefits of exercise for your blood vessels last only as long as you keep exercising on a regular basis. Experts recommend that men who want to prevent impotence make a long-term commitment to exercise. Here are some tips to remember:
-Choose activities you enjoy. Your exercise program doesn’t have to be elaborate. In fact, studies have shown that just walking briskly every day for at least three months significantly improves the health of your blood vessels. Aim to be active most days of the week. If you prefer basketball, that’s fine — just keep up the full-court press.
-Spice it up with weight training. Aerobic exercise such as walking, swimming, and jogging, is good for your blood vessels, but resistance training has been shown to improve endothelial function as well. A mix of both can help improve your overall health and keep you interested in your workout routine.
-Don’t let your age stop you. Erectile dysfunction is more common as men get older, but at the same time, habitual exercise has been shown to fight the effects of age on blood vessels.
-Check in with your doctor if you haven’t been physically active in a while. It’s a good idea to get your doctor’s approval — and maybe some additional exercise tips — if you’re starting an exercise program from scratch.






LIMIT ASTHMA ATTACKS CAUSED BY COLDS

A cold or the flu can trigger an asthma attack. Here’s why — and how to keep your sneeze from turning into a wheeze.
Respiratory infections, such as colds and the flu, are one of the most common causes of asthma flare-ups, especially in young children.
A stuffy nose, sore throat, cough, fever, or other signs and symptoms caused by a cold or flu (influenza) virus can be a nuisance. But if you have asthma, even a minor respiratory infection can cause major problems. Asthma signs and symptoms, such as wheezing and chest tightness, may not respond as well to regular asthma medications. Also, asthma symptoms caused by a respiratory infection may last for several days to weeks.
There’s no sure way to keep yourself or your child from getting a cold or the flu. But taking steps to avoid getting sick — and taking the right steps when you do — can help.
Preventing colds and the flu
Take these steps to help you avoid getting sick:
-Get an annual flu shot unless your doctor recommends against it. Most adults and children older than 6 months old should get a flu vaccination every year. If you do get a vaccination, you’ll need a shot (injection), since nasal spray vaccinations, such as FluMist, aren’t recommended for people with asthma. You or your child may need vaccinations for more than one type of flu virus.
-Ask your doctor if you need a pneumonia vaccination. Most people need to get this vaccination only one time, but in some cases a booster shot is needed.
-Avoid contact with anyone who’s sick. Germs that cause respiratory infections are easily passed from person to person.
-Wash your hands often. This kills the germs that can cause respiratory infections. Carry a bottle of hand sanitizer to kill germs while you’re on the go.
-Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. These are the points where germs that can make you sick enter your body.
-Stay in shape. Regular exercise may help you avoid getting sick.






FOODS TO FIGHT CHOLESTEROL

Foods that fight cholesterol often have high amounts of dietary fiber, omega-3 fatty acids and monounsaturated fats. Most of these nutrients can be found in fruits, vegetables, fish and whole grains, which should already be included in your daily diet. High-density lipoprotein (HDL) is called “good cholesterol” because it removes excess cholesterol from your arteries and sends it to your liver for disposal. According to the American Heart Association (AHA), you should consume four to five servings of vegetables and fruits daily to maintain your cholesterol HDL level.
Dietary Fiber
Dietary fiber consists of two different types of fiber: insoluble and soluble fiber. Insoluble fiber promotes movement in your intestines, relieving constipation and other bowel disorders. According to the Mayo Clinic, you can find insoluble fiber in wheat bran, whole-wheat flour, dark and leafy vegetables, nuts and seeds. Soluble fiber breaks down in water and changes into a gel, which helps lower your low-density lipoprotein (LDL), or “bad cholesterol.” Soluble fibers take longer to digest, which makes you feel full longer, therefore causing you to eat less. You can find this nutrient in oranges, apples, barley, oatmeal, carrots and legumes.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3 fatty acids are good for your heart due to their cholesterol-lowering qualities. According to “Controlling Cholesterol for Dummies,” these polyunsaturated fatty acids prevent triglycerides, chemical forms of fat, from converting excess calories into fat by lowering triglyceride levels in your body. Omega-3 fatty acids are also high in HDL. You can find Omega-3 fatty acids in fish, especially salmon, albacore tuna, herring and trout.
Monounsaturated Fats
Whole milk, red meat, eggs, butter and some margarines contain saturated fats and trans fats. Monounsaturated fat, meanwhile, is unsaturated fat that does not increase your LDL. In fact, according to the AHA, monounsaturated fat may lower your cholesterol when used as a replacement for saturated fat and trans fat. You can find monounsaturated fat in fish, nuts and vegetable oils, but limit consumption to 25 to 35 percent of your caloric intake.






WHAT’S MORBID OBESITY?

The term morbid obesity refers to patients who are 50 – 100% — or 100 pounds above — their ideal body weight. Alternatively, a BMI (body mass index) value greater than 39 may be used to diagnose morbid obesity.
Medical problems commonly resulting from untreated morbid obesity include the following:
-Diabetes
-Hypertension
-Heart disease
-Stroke
-Certain cancers
, including breast and colon
-Depression
-Osteoarthritis

Affected people may gradually develop hypoxemia (decreased blood oxygen saturation) and have problems with sleep apnea (periodic cessation of breathing while asleep).
Decreased blood oxygen and problems associated with sleep apnea may result in feeling drowsy through the day (somnolence), high blood pressure, and pulmonary hypertension. In extreme cases, especially when medical treatment is not sought, this can lead to right-sided heart failure (cor pulmonale), and ultimately death.






ENDORPHINS: KEY TO NATURAL HAPPINESS

Scientists believe that endorphins and pain are connected because the body releases endorphins to help combat the effects of physical pain and stress. These neurotransmitters have an effect on the brain that is often compared to that of morphine or other opiate drugs, in that endorphins and opiate drugs affect the same receptors in the brain. Endorphins and pain are connected because pain can cause the release of endorphins in the brain, but other activities are also believed to release endorphins. Laughter, physical contact with loved ones, sex, childbirth, strenuous exercise, and eating certain foods are also believed to cause the release of endorphins. Experts believe that endorphins can help people bond with one another, overcome physical and mental fatigue, and cope with extreme pain.
Not everyone releases the same amounts of endorphins with the same amounts of stimulus. Of all possible stimuli for the release of these neurotransmitters, endorphins and pain are usually most strongly linked. It is believed that the primary function of endorphins is to attach themselves to the brain’s opioid receptors, dampening feelings of physical pain. At the same time, endorphins can also enhance feelings of well-being and pleasure. They typically do this by stifling neural activity in the cerebral cortex and thalamus regions of the brain. These regions of the brain are considered responsible for registering feelings of physical pain, so that when activity there is diminished, levels of the feel-good neurotransmitter dopamine rise in the area.
The brain’s release of endorphins can cause feelings of calm and euphoria. Immunity may be strengthened, appetite may change, and the hormones that regulate sex drive may become more balanced. The connection between endorphins and pain has been implicated in several well-known phenomena, including the mother’s ability to endure the pain of childbirth and the feelings of well-being one may experience after strenuous physical exercise.






6 SUPERFOODS FOR YOUR HUNGRY BRAIN!

The brain is a very hungry organ. It is the first of the body’s organs to absorb nutrients from the food we eat. Give the body junk food and the brain suffers. Certain brain foods actually help boost a child’s brain growth and improves brain function, memory, and concentration. That’s a very important piece of information for all parents to ensure that they are giving their kids the “superfoods” they need to get the most of their school day. Here are a few foods to consider:
-Salmon
Salmon is high in omega 3′s, which are essential for brain growth and function. Research shows that when kids get more of these fatty acids in their diets, they have sharper minds and do better at mental skill tests. LUNCH: Instead of making a tuna sandwich, make salmon salad instead. Simply add a little mayo or plain yogurt and add some celery or carrots or a little chopped green onion. A little Dijon is a nice extra too. Serve on WHOLE grain bread, which is also a good brain food. DINNER: Salmon patties are easy to make – use 14 oz. canned salmon, add some blanched baby spinach, ½ onion finely chopped and salt and pepper. Make into patties and then into panko. Heat grapeseed oil, cook over medium heat, and serve with brown rice.
-Peanut Butter
Peanuts and peanut butter are a great source of vitamin E, a potent antioxidant that protects nervous membranes. Antioxidants neutralize free radicals which helps to prevent cell and tissue damage.
-Berries
In general, the more intense in color, the more nutrition. Berries also have a high level of antioxidants, especially Vitamin C. Try berries with your morning oatmeal, add cranberries to couscous and feta, or make a fast sherbet – freeze berries that you’ve had in your fridge and know they need to be eaten by the next day.
-Whole Grains
The brain needs a constant supply of glucose and whole grains provide that in spades. The fibers helps regulate the release of glucose into the body. And, remember, getting enough fiber is important for pooping every day.
-Beans
Beans are really special because they have energy from protein and complex carbs and have lots of fiber as well as lots of vitamins and minerals. They should win the gold medal for about the best food on the planet. They are excellent brain food since they keep a child’s energy and thinking levels at peak performance for a long time.
-Milk and Yogurt
You’ve heard “milk does the body good” and it’s true. Dairy foods are packed with protein and B vitamins – essential for growth of brain tissue. Milk and yogurt also provide a bigger punch with both protein and carbs, the preferred source of energy for the brain.