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Category Archives: Health

Grateful to My Petaluma Chiropractor That Helped Me Resolve My Back Pain

My back used to give me so much trouble. I almost lost my job due to missing so many days of work because I could not move without severe pain. I have gone into work and forced myself to get through the days while in horrible pain. It was tough to stay cheerful, and I lived on ibuprofen and acetaminophen. I credit my Petaluma chiropractor with helping me put all that behind me. The office is on our holiday greeting card list, and I always bring them a sweet treat from the bakery when I go in for a routine adjustment.

You remember people who really help you. My back is not hurting like it used to.

Diet for High Cholesterol

Ingredients List: If you buy any packaged and/or processed foods you need to read the nutrition label and the ingredients list. In those two charts are the clues about whether or not the food is safe to eat.

The nutrition label will tell you how much cholesterol is in the product, but it really isn’t the most important number. The amount of saturated fat is the most important. Some packaged foods are low in cholesterol but the fats will still clog the arteries.

The ingredients tell you where the fats come from. Phrases like “trans fat” and “hydrogenated vegetable oil” are signs that you don’t want to eat that product.

Recipes: There are sites all over the internet that give recipes for any condition known to mankind. If you are new to cooking these will be very helpful in getting you started, but you should choose with care. If it looks like something you wouldn’t like, don’t make it. That’s the fastest way to skip a heart healthy diet. I know this from experience.

Experiment: This has been by far the most successful at our house. I look at regular recipes, those we know we like, and tweak them. So it calls for butter. Instead, use olive oil or split it fifty fifty with olive oil. Same with bacon.

Ideal Cholesterol Ratio

The ideal cholesterol ratio is about 3.5:1. So AHA recommends that we should keep our cholesterol ratio at or below 5:1. You can talk to your doctor about the best numbers for you.

If you know your cholesterol numbers or levels, you can work with your doctor to find your ideal cholesterol ratio. You can work together to identify the proper treatments for you. Like making simple lifestyle changes on what you eat, how often you need to exercise or even taking cholesterol supplements or medicines like statins, if necessary, so you can reach your ideal ratio.

Lowering your LDL and increasing the level of your HDL, reduces your risk of having cardiovascular disease. High-density lipoprotein (HDL) is the good cholesterol. HDL benefits lies in the fact that it carries LDL (Bad) Cholesterol back to the liver which cleanses cholesterol from the bloodstream.

Low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL) is the bad cholesterol. The higher LDL, the greater the risks of heart attack. The excess cholesterol can build up and stick to the walls of your arteries when level of LDL is high. This causes plaque; plaque formation can cause atherosclerosis which is the hardening of the arteries. When the plaque becomes wobbly, a blood clot can form, suddenly blocking an artery. That can cause a heart attack.

The Total Cholesterol

When your cholesterol is tested, you get a number for total cholesterol, HDL number, and the LDL number. The total cholesterol will be more than the sum of the LDL and HDL numbers. The acceptable HDL cholesterol level is at least 40mg/dL. Optimal HDL cholesterol are higher than 60. An optimal LDL cholesterol level is under 100 mg/dL. If it’s high because of the HDL number, your health is not necessarily in danger. However, if it’s high because your LDL cholesterol number, it’s important to talk with your doctor about your health risks.

Dangerous Levels

High cholesterol level can be a risk factor for heart attack and stroke. Blockages that prevent sufficient blood flow in the coronary arteries can lead to a form of chest pain called angina. Angina is a common symptom of coronary artery disease. If you have high cholesterol, your doctor will want to know your LDL and HDL levels before deciding whether you need treatment and what sort of treatment you need.

Atherosclerosis Facts

Atherosclerosis refers to the medical condition also known as hardening of the arteries. Arteries are important to supply blood to all parts of the body and ensure all bodily activities are carried out normally. The arteries basically become lined with plaque. Plaque is made up of fat, cholesterol, calcium, and other substances that are blood constituents. They slowly start lining the inside walls of the arteries. This blockage doesn’t happen overnight. It is a very slow and gradual process, which can even start in childhood. It’s important for all of us to pay attention since the condition may go unnoticed until it’s severe enough to cause problems with bodily functions. Any artery of the human body, be it in the brain, heart, kidney or arms can be affected by it. So it becomes of vital importance to take necessary precautions. Soft plaque tends to get detached at times by blood flow and can cause blockage elsewhere if it gets stuck. This is a major cause of concern as it could lead to strokes and even death in some cases.

There are a few other atherosclerosis facts that are important to be aware of if you wish to prevent atherosclerosis from happening. First, understand that prevention is most important. So, start early and build towards a better and healthier lifestyle. Pay attention to any signals your body gives: shortness of breath, feeling of nausea, cramps, deviation in blood pressure etc. Visit a doctor regularly and have a full body health check-up. Maintain your weight and height with the healthy range of body mass index. Any high deviations should be done away with controlled diet and exercise. Exercise regularly and eat healthy, even if it means cutting down on that extra bar of chocolate. Enjoy life but know that you can’t take your body for granted; it deserves the respect you expect of others. Maintain your health, mind, soul and body for a healthy and long life.

Ways to Protect Heart

Omega-3 fatty acids, which cannot be produced naturally by the body, are found in fish such as salmon, tuna, mackerel, sardines, herring and anchovies. The fatty acids are important to protect the heart, prevent arthritis and control diabetes. The oil increases the level of nitric oxide which has a direct impact on the muscle cells that control blood vessels, and block the body’s response to inflammation. Research carried out by University of Reading in the UK finds that omega-3 is as potent as prescribed drugs taken by diabetics. So, three benefits for the price of one.

These types of fish, along with cod, sole and haddock which contain lower levels of omega-3, have other benefits in that they are lower in calories than other foods sources such as meats, have little saturated fat and little salt. They are also packed with a range of the essential vitamins and minerals that our body needs. So they offer general all round health benefits.

Why is it that over 60% of adults never eat oily fish? It surely cannot be caused by the word “oily”, since in comparison with the much consumed burger, with high saturated fat levels, fish could be genuinely referred to as “health foods.” They are great to eat and offer a multitude of meal options.

Consider straightforward grilling of fish such as mackerel or sardines. Searing and lightly cooking a tuna steak. A traditional fish pie. A salmon steak coated in Cajun seasoning and grilled. A whole smoked herring. Nutritionists suggest that we should eat at least two meals a week consisting of fish, one of which to be a variety high in omega-3. When one considers the three meal options of the day over seven days a week, this objective can easily be achieved. Having a great meal made with fish with plenty of fresh vegetables will also do wonders to improve your own sense of feeling better.

Women Over 50 in Risk for Heart Attack

Most women experience one or more of the following symptoms at least a month before a heart attack: Unusual fatigue, muscle weakness, indigestion problems, anxiety, cold sweats, unable to breath properly, sleep disturbances, heart racing or palpitations, nausea, dizziness and a hot flushes. If you experience any of these symptoms, speak with a doctor soon. It may be nothing or it could be a sign your heart is not healthy and is under a lot of strain.

Menopause Can Increase Your Risk: Estrogen helps protect the heart as it balances out the cholesterol levels. After menopause women’s levels of good cholesterol drop and bad cholesterol increases. Women also experience elevated triglycerides levels which increases the risk of heart disease significantly. Once a woman reaches the age of sixty five, the risk of death from a heart attack will be much higher.

Diabetes Is A Contributing Factor: Diabetes combined with obesity, high cholesterol and hypertension can significantly increase the risk of heart attack in women over fifty. Diabetes doubles the risk of a women suffering from more than one heart attack during her lifetime.

Metabolic Syndrome: Research from Harvard Medical School suggests that women who have metabolic syndrome are more prone to having an attack. What are the symptoms of metabolic syndrome? A large waist, glucose intolerance, high blood pressure, elevated levels of bad cholesterol and high triglycerides. Speak with your doctor if you have any of these symptoms.

Smoking: Females that smoke are twice as likely to lead to heart disease over women who don’t. It is a well-known fact; smoking greatly increases the risk of heart attack, cancer, heart disease and other pulmonary issues such as COPD.

It is important to know, most women don’t experience crushing chest pain before a heart attack. Pain in the neck, shoulders and abdominal areas are more common. We hope you have found this article informative and understand more about heart attack risks in women over the age of fifty.

Some Dangers of Salt

Blood pressure

Blood pressure measures the force that blood pushes and moves against blood vessels. This is important so that the body has a sufficient supply of oxygen and energy needed for life. For this to be effective the blood pressure has to be as normal as possible. Eating too much salt causes a raise in blood pressure, because the excess salt causes a strain to the arteries trying to pump the blood through the arteries to the major organs. This constant strain on the arteries can lead to them becoming busted, or becoming clogged up. This can eventually lead to the organs becoming damaged, which could be fatal for the body.

Kidneys

The kidneys are a major organ in our bodies flushing out unwanted fluid through urine, when we go to the toilet. This process is done by extracting the fluid from our blood. Eating excess salt causes the amount of salt to stay in the blood stream. This can make life difficult for the kidneys to remove the salt from the blood stream. This can cause a strain on the kidneys, causing the body to retain the extra fluid. This can eventually lead to kidney damage,

Stroke

A raised blood pressure could also cause a problem for the brain as well, due to the possible lack of oxygen passing from the arteries leading to the brain. This could lead to stroke, resulting in possible dementia. This is due to the arteries becoming damaged, or busted due to the lack of oxygen going to the brain.

Osteoporosis

The Kidneys also support the body by helping to ensure enough Vitamin D absorbs calcium. This is important as calcium and vitamin D produce strong bones and teeth in the body. However salt can affect this, by salt being absorbed in the urine, this can weaken the bones, which can lead to osteoporosis.

Treatment of High Cholesterol

The treatment of lipid profile is similar to other chronic conditions such as hypertension and diabetes, and should be followed for life. It is very important that changes in dietary habits are maintained regularly. Medications, when prescribed, must be taken indefinitely for them to produce the final benefit is the reduction in the risk of onset of manifestations of atherosclerosis.

Useful Tips to control levels of blood lipids in the day-to-day:

  • Use skim milk and yogurt or “light”
  • Give preference to low-fat cheeses (fresh, ricotta, cottage) and margarines
  • Prepare foods using vegetable oils: soybean, corn, canola, sunflower and olive oil
  • Beware of fried foods, especially those made with lard and butter
  • Vary the meat, beef interspersed with birds and fish
  • Remove visible fat from meat and skin from poultry before cooking if possible
  • Avoid preparations containing: cream, whipped cream, mayonnaise, chocolate, hydrogenated fat, condensed milk
  • Eat egg yolks and preparations with moderately
  • For seasoning salads use olive oil, vinegar and lemon
  • The masses must be accompanied by red sauces or vegetables
  • Use the oven or microwave to prepare breaded Milanese and
  • Give preference to snacks to baked than fried
  • And cold meats (sausage and sausage) of birds can be consumed
  • Canned fruit, popsicles, gelatin, jams, are exempt from fats or cholesterol, but beware the calories because fattening and sugar can increase the level of blood triglycerides
  • When composing the meal, merge foods with natural foods
  • Use salt sparingly. Beware the overuse of table salt shaker
  • Maintain a healthy weight
  • Become more active in their day-to-day. Avoid staying long periods sitting
  • Avoid smoking
  • If user of alcoholic beverages, do so in moderation

Widowmaker Heart Attack

Starting from the moment that the widowmaker heart attack first hits you, the time one can survive can go anywhere from just some minutes to several hours depending on the severity of the condition. The symptoms will start to appear and become unbearable really fast allow for you to know that something is wrong and that you need immediate emergency medical attention.

These symptoms are the same that you would be able to find in a case of regular cardiac arrest (the symptoms are due to the lack of the blood flow, not because of anything more specific than than) and will include nausea, jaw pain, tightness in chest, very irregular heart beat (the heart will try to pump the blood as it should even in these conditions), pain in the heart and others. You can read some more about the symptoms in the Heart Attack Symptoms article we have up. However, unlike the regular attack (from other conditions), this time it’s a lot easier to determine that it’s a widowmaker heart attack due to the progress of the symptoms. Even if at first it could seem like food poisoning or flu, the symptoms will rapidly intensify and alert you.

One misconception is that the death is instantaneous. As we’ve mentioned before, it can take anywhere from minutes to hours for the symptoms to start affecting you and will only induce cardiac arrest when there’s been anywhere from 10 to 20 minutes with no circulation at all.

If the treatment is fast enough, it’s possible for the victim to survive for a while with just the oxygen that is still in the blood. This is a very small window of opportunity so the treatment needs to be done as fast as possible. The widowmaker heart attack needs to be treated even faster than a regular heart attack, so make sure you detect the symptoms as fast as possible and get medical help.

Managing Hypertension

Dietary Restrictions

1) Low sodium intake: The main source of sodium in Western diets is processed food, for instance, excessive quantities of salt are contained in packaged food and in food eaten outside the home. The DASH trial evaluated the effects of varying sodium intake in addition to the DASH diet and found that lowering sodium intake reduces blood pressure levels. Mean sodium intake is approximately 4,100 mg per day for men and 2,750 mg per day for women, 75% of which comes from processed foods.

Recommended Daily Sodium Intake Dietary sodium should be reduced to no more than 100 mmol per day (2.4 g of sodium).

2) Alcohol: Alcohol intake should be limited to no more than 1 oz (30 mL) of ethanol, the equivalent of two drinks per day for most men and no more than 0.5 oz of ethanol (one drink) per day for women and lighter-weight persons. A single drink is equivalent to 12 oz of beer, 5 oz of wine, or 1.5 oz of 80-proof liquor.

3) Caffeine: Caffeine may result in high blood pressure; however, this effect is usually temporary. Moderate intake of caffeine per day does not significantly increase blood pressure.

Recommended Daily Coffee Intake Coffee intake should be less than two cups per day.

Dietary Supplements

1) Potassium supplementation: Lower potassium intake (i.e., below 40 mEq) is thought to be associated with high blood pressure.

2) Fish Oil: According to a meta-analysis of 36 trials of fish oil, the consumption of high doses of fish oil with a median dose of 3.7 g per day provided a significant reduction in systemic blood pressure. Fish oil consumption has also shown to reduce triglycerides.

Recommended Daily Fish Oil Intake A median dose of 3.7 g per day provided a significant reduction in systemic blood pressure.

3) Folate: A small randomized study reported that short-term folic acid supplementation could reduce blood pressure significantly. It has been suggested that a daily intake of 5 mg of folic acid could be beneficial in reducing systolic pressure.

4) Flavonoids: A Cochrane meta-analysis looking at multiple randomized controlled trials reported that flavanol-rich chocolate and cocoa products may have a small but significant effect in lowering blood pressure by 2-3 mm/Hg in the short term.

5) Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10): Some studies suggest that CoQ10 may have the potential to reduce systolic pressure by up to 17 mm Hg and diastolic pressure by up to 10 mm Hg without any significant side effects. The average dosage used in these studies were around 217 mg/day.