Yawning is a natural part of everyday life, yet this simple phenomenon has some rather curious and mysterious features. To help you learn more about yawning, Dr. Sujay Kansagra, a sleep health consultant for Mattress Firm and the director of Duke University’s Pediatric Neurology Sleep Medicine Program, offers answers to some of the most commonly asked questions.
If you worry that you or someone you love will get heart disease or even have a heart attack, it’s understandable. Heart disease is the leading cause of death for men and women in the United States. However, research shows you can lower your risk, particularly if you team up with family, friends or co-workers. Consider these five tips that can help lower your risk of heart disease.
5 Ways to Improve Your Heart Health
(Family Features) If you worry that you or someone you love will get heart disease or even have a heart attack, it’s understandable.
Heart disease is the leading cause of death for men and women in the United States, according to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI).
Research shows you can lower your risk, particularly if you team up with family, friends or co-workers. This kind of social support may be the key to your success.
To mark American Heart Month, NHLBI, one of the National Institutes of Health, is inviting people across the country to team up and join #OurHearts, a national heart health initiative that encourages people to improve heart health together.
“Studies show that having positive, close relationships and feeling connected to others benefits overall health, blood pressure, weight and more,” said NHLBI’s Dr. David Goff, director of cardiovascular sciences.
Consider these five tips that can help lower your risk of heart disease:
Risk: An unhealthy diet
Risk: Smoking, even occasionally
Risk: Inadequate or poor-quality sleep
Risk: Uncontrolled stress
Learn about heart health and heart healthy activities in your community at nhlbi.nih.gov/ourhearts. Use #OurHearts on social media to share how you and your friends, colleagues or family members are being heart healthy together.
Photo courtesy of Getty ImagesSOURCE:
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute
A typical course of action for people who are feeling a little under the weather is to visit a doctor who will prescribe one or more medications for them. However, more people are turning to home remedies when they need relief from minor illnesses. Some physicians are even willing to prescribe natural products, herbs, and certain types of food for patients who suffer from chronic maladies. When fending off minor illnesses, there are a number of home remedies you might wish to try before resorting to pharmaceuticals.
Eating kiwi for dinner may be the remedy you need if you find it difficult to sleep at night. Studies have shown that eating a kiwi or two an hour before turning in for bed at night can result in sleep that is both deeper and longer in duration. One reason kiwi is likely to aid with sleep is its high serotonin content. A lack of serotonin has been correlated with insomnia. In addition, kiwi is rich in folate, which is also needed for healthy sleep patterns.
Cloves possess a compound known as eugenol that has both antibacterial and anesthetic properties. These qualities make clove an excellent selection to numb the pain of a toothache and reduce the swelling and puffiness from infection. Cloves are rich in antioxidants, and their antimicrobial properties help to clean the affected area around the tooth.
Cloves are not the only food that can be used to treat a toothache. There is an array of other natural antibiotics for tooth infections that you can try before resorting to seeing a dentist, especially if you are trying to save money.
The best way to avoid acid reflux is to avoid items like fried food, high-fat beef, and sodas. One food you should add to your diet if you are prone to acid reflux is apples. Eating an apple or two a day will provide you with enough pectin to benefit from the acid-absorbing properties of the compound. Apples also contain tartaric and malic acids, which will fight against juices from the stomach that flow in an upward direction. Sweeter apples like organic red ones are the best choice to lessen the symptoms of GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease). They're considered an alkaline food option.
Both patients and traditional medical practitioners have become more aware of the positive benefits of using organic food for medicine. The three foods mentioned above have proven their usefulness at combating specific illnesses. You might find them a great substitute for pharmaceutical medications.
Looking for ways to live a healthier lifestyle? We recommend this article next!
Stroke is often thought of as something that happens to older people, but more people under 50 are having strokes due to increased risky behaviors, such as smoking and untreated high blood pressure. In recognition of World Stroke Day, consider these five tips to help reduce your risk of stroke and maintain mental sharpness as you age.
Tips to Improve Wellness and Prevent Stroke
(Family Features) Stroke is often thought of as something that happens to older people, but more people under 50 are having strokes due to increased risky behaviors, such as smoking and untreated high blood pressure.
Strokes don’t discriminate, according to the American Stroke Association, a division of the American Heart Association, the world’s leading voluntary health organization devoted to fighting cardiovascular disease and stroke. They can happen to anyone, at any age. About 1 in 4 people worldwide will have a stroke in their lifetime. However, up to 80% of first strokes may be prevented.
“Healthy habits can protect and improve brain function and lower your stroke risk,” said Dr. Lee Schwamm, MD, American Stroke Association volunteer chairman and executive vice chairman, department of neurology at Massachusetts General Hospital.
In recognition of World Stroke Day on Oct. 29, the American Stroke Association offers these five tips to help reduce your risk of stroke and maintain mental sharpness as you age:
“These simple suggestions are great for everyone to follow, even if you don’t think you’re likely to have a stroke,” Schwamm said. “While many adults don’t think they are at risk for stroke or reduced brain function, the reality is that nearly half of all adults in America have high blood pressure, and untreated high blood pressure is one of the most common causes of stroke and also causes up to 60% of dementia.”
For more information and tips for preventing stroke, visit Stroke.org/WorldStrokeDay.
Photo courtesy of Getty ImagesSOURCE:
American Heart Association
Everyone knows that a good night's sleep gives you energy, reduces levels of mental health disorders, and gives the body time to repair itself. In addition to the more obvious benefits, there are a host of lesser-known advantages that solid rest provides. Here are three surprising things that a good night of sleep can do for you.
May Prevent Cancer
Research has shown that inadequate sleep may lead to certain types of cancer. Experts believe that too much light exposure reduces the amount of melatonin in the body. It is this hormone that regulates your body's natural circadian rhythm and protects against cancer by suppressing tumor growth. You can help your body to produce quality levels of melatonin by keeping your bedroom dark and by limiting the use of electronic devices before going to sleep.
Help You Lose Weight
People who do not get enough sleep each night are more likely to be overweight or obese. It is believed that this happens because inadequate sleep negatively affects the natural balance of hormones in the body that impact the appetite. A lack of solid sleep disrupts the hormones ghrelin and leptin. It is these two hormones that affect your appetite. Getting a full night's rest even helps with overeating. A body that is deprived of adequate sleep will produce more cortisol, causing you to crave more food. Making an effort to stay true to your body's natural sleep cycle will help you to keep off the pounds.
That fogginess in your brain may be attributed to a lack of sleep. Research has shown that sleep plays a critical role in the retention of memories. While your body is resting when you sleep, your brain is actually working in overdrive processing the events of the day, making connections, and sorting emotions. This all happens when your body enters the deep sleep phase. Without this regular deep sleep, your brain is not able to function at optimum levels. Getting the recommended amount of sleep each night will assist your brain in remembering and processing things more accurately.
Making the effort to get a good night's sleep will pay off big dividends for the future of your health. Not only are the short-term effects of good physical health a result of solid rest, but the long-term effects will also improve your overall quality of life and longevity.
While it certainly is true that muscle mass can be lost when calories are cut, the ratio of lost strength to fat is going to differ depending on your body type and the method you use to lose weight. It is also entirely possible to lose body fat percentages while maintaining or even increasing muscle mass if you use the right strategies.
Heavy cardio is a great way to burn calories, but it’s also a good way to lose hard-earned muscle mass, according to Johnson Fitness & Wellness. That's not to say that cardio is terrible, but a routine based primarily around it is going to negatively impact the muscles you’ve worked to build up. You’re going to want to add more to your routine than just running yourself ragged on the treadmill. Swimming or HIIT are excellent methods to gain a functionally powerful frame while maintaining that lean look. For those of you who want to sculpt your body in specific ways, weightlifting interspersed with bouts of cardio here and there is the go-to method. The basic idea is to use the muscle groups you want your body to keep around so that you don’t lose them during the dieting process. Some of you who are newer to the gym may find yourselves pleasantly surprised at how dense your body will feel even after losing weight!
According to TruVision, losing fat while maintaining muscle, like everything else in fitness, involves what you eat more than anything else. By using protein effectively, as well as being careful of carb intake, you can maintain muscle while losing fat. The tough part about losing body fat isn’t the number-crunching required to get to a caloric deficit. For most people, it’s about keeping away from temptation and getting used to proper portion sizes. As far as when and how to eat, that’s totally up to you. Some people insist that eating many small meals a day works great, while others are into eating one huge meal a day followed by a set period of fasting. Experiment and see what works for you.
It’s going to take a lot of protein to build up a strong body, and you’re going to need quite a bit of it to maintain what you’ve got. You also have to do this while in a caloric deficit, which isn’t going to be easy until you get used to it. Thus, protein powders are going to be almost essential for maintaining your strength. The two basic types of protein powders on the market are whey and casein. The former is a quick absorption protein that is meant to be taken immediately after a workout for maximum muscle building. Casein is a slow-digesting powder you take before sleeping so that your body has the fuel it needs to rebuild your body during this healing period.
No one wants to lose muscle when trying to lose weight, but it happens sometimes. With a combination of exercise that's geared for building muscle, a proper diet, and some supplemental help, you’ll find yourself pleasantly surprised at just how easy it is to maintain muscle.
(BPT) - Many Americans consider themselves well-informed and attentive when it comes to their health.
That’s why it's so puzzling that many remain unfazed by the threat of heart disease.
That was among the findings of the MDVIP Heart Attack IQ Survey, a national study showing Americans are more concerned about cancer than a heart attack — even though cardiovascular disease kills more people than all forms of cancer combined. In fact, heart disease is the underlying cause of one in three U.S. deaths. Many Americans don’t take it seriously because they believe most heart problems can be treated with medication or surgery, while others simply procrastinate when it comes to adopting healthier behaviors that help prevent heart disease.
As a result, many are surprised when faced with a life-threatening heart attack, which can happen to anyone at any age. While the average age for a first attack is 66 for men and 70 for women, the risk increases significantly as soon as men reach 45 and women reach 55.
“Despite the statistics, people assume a heart attack is going to happen to somebody else, but not to them,” said MDVIP Chief Medical Officer Dr. Andrea Klemes. “Heart disease can be dangerously silent, which is why it’s important to know your risk factors and the steps you can take to minimize them.”
Gloom and doom aside, awareness of the issue is the first step, and there is much you can do to prevent heart disease. Some 80 percent of heart attacks and strokes are preventable.
Consider these suggestions for reducing your risk of heart attack:
* Partner with your primary. Your primary care doctor is your first line of defense in helping prevent heart disease. Make sure you partner with a physician who has the time to identify and discuss your risk in detail, who will work on a plan to control your risk factors and who can provide ongoing support to keep you motivated and accountable. Physicians like those in the MDVIP network maintain smaller practices so that they can devote more time to each patient and provide the coaching needed to keep them on track.
* Stay up to date on screenings. When’s the last time you had your blood pressure and cholesterol checked? But don’t stop at the basics. Most heart attacks occur in people with normal cholesterol levels. You also want to get a read on whether you have inflammation in your arteries or insulin resistance, both of which raise your heart disease risk. You can only act on what you know, and knowing your numbers is key to early detection.
* Make heart-healthy changes. Creating and sustaining healthy lifestyle habits can help keep your blood pressure, cholesterol and sugar in check and lower your risk for heart disease. So don’t skip your exercise, weight management or smoking cessation programs. Just make sure you consult with your doctor before changing your diet or beginning a new exercise program.
* Sleep more, stress less. While often overlooked, insufficient sleep and excessive stress can put strain on your heart over time. Both can also influence your eating habits, mood and overall health. Most adults need seven to nine hours per night; if you’re getting that and still feel tired, consider asking your doctor for a sleep apnea test. Also, try starting a regular practice — whether it’s a yoga class, deep breathing or a daily walk outside — to better manage stress.
Take the Heart Attack IQ quiz and learn more about finding a preventive physician by visiting www.mdvip.com/HeartAttackIQ.
It’s a common misconception: the older you get, the more frequently you need to use the bathroom at night. Nocturia, which forces individuals to get up more than once per night to urinate, is a leading cause of sleep loss and can put one’s health at risk.
Waking up to go to the bathroom multiple times per night? It’s not because you’re ‘getting old’
(Family Features) It’s a common misconception: the older you get, the more frequently you need to use the bathroom at night. Did you know waking up more than once per night to urinate is a medical condition known as nocturia? Shockingly, 64 percent of American adults do not know.
A recent Harris Poll of more than 2,000 U.S. adults, endorsed by The Simon Foundation for Continence, National Association for Continence (NAFC) and the Prostate Conditions Education Council (PCEC), found that approximately one-third of them suffer from nocturia. Nocturia, which forces individuals to get up more than once per night to urinate, is a leading cause of sleep loss and can put one’s health at risk.
“Before receiving treatment for nocturia, I typically wound up making five trips to the bathroom each night, which I knew wasn’t normal,” said Jack Fagan, a 67-year-old resident of Sewell, NJ. “Treatment has made a noticeable impact on my quality of sleep. I find myself more refreshed and have the energy to enjoy time with family and friends.”
Most people living with nocturia (72 percent) reported they are negatively impacted by the condition at night; 43 percent of whom have trouble falling back to sleep, 12 percent indicated they wake up their partners and 10 percent expressed nervousness about tripping or falling while walking to the bathroom. The impact of nocturia-induced sleep loss can be wide-ranging, affecting physical and mental health. Sixty-one percent of nocturia sufferers experience daytime issues as a result of nighttime urination, including: drowsiness, irritability and reduced productivity and concentration.
Sixty-six percent of nocturia sufferers surveyed have never discussed their symptoms with a healthcare professional; half of respondents reported they thought it was a normal part of aging, and 27 percent believed nothing could be done to remedy the problem.
“We see patients who have suffered with nocturia for many years, as it slowly progresses from getting up twice to over four times per night to urinate,” said Roger Dmochowski, M.D., a nocturia sufferer and professor within the department of urologic surgery at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. “In my personal and professional experience, nocturia can have serious implications for an individual’s emotional state and daily life, due to sleep disruption, if not diagnosed and treated. Up until recently, we didn’t have effective treatments.”
The Harris Poll survey was funded by Avadel Pharmaceuticals and Serenity Pharmaceuticals.
Photo courtesy of Getty ImagesSOURCE:
JPA Health Communications
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