Saturday, March 24, 2018

Articles Written By AndreaGroth

Standard Treatment for Injuries May Be Counterproductive

March 24th, 2018

If you have ever been injured, you probably heard that you should employ RICE – rest, ice, compression and elevation—to speed recovery.  You may have taken ibuprofen or another anti-inflammatory medication to relieve pain and speed healing. New research suggests we shouldn’t be using ice or NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) to recover from many injuries. NSAIDs actually slow the healing of injured muscles, tendons, ligament, and bones. Why? NSAIDs work by inhibiting the production of prostaglandins.  Prostaglandins are produced as a result of the inflammatory response and may... Read More

Daylight Savings Time Is Not Healthy!

March 15th, 2018

It is ironic that this week—the week when we are all sleep deprived due to the commencement of Daylight Savings Time – is National Sleep Awareness Week. This year’s theme “Begin with Sleep” highlights the importance of good sleep health for individuals to best achieve their personal, family, and professional goals. Daylight Savings Time has a number of health risks associated with it. In the days after the time change, the risk of heart attack, workplace injury and car accident is higher. Being tired can decrease productivity, concentration, and general well-being and our appetite regulation... Read More

Low Fat vs. Low Carb – Which Diet Works?

March 8th, 2018

It’s almost spring and many Americans start to think about dumping the winter plump in preparation for summer.  With that in mind, consider some recent information comparing dieting techniques and their success at helping you lose a few. Some dieters firmly believe in avoiding fat and while others espouse avoiding carbs. Does it matter? In a recent study at Stanford University researchers put more than 600 overweight adults on either a healthy low-fat or low-carb diet. It turns out, participants had similar levels of weight loss success on each plan. That’s right!  Both diets were successful. The... Read More

Japan Will Soon Have A Drug To Combat The Flu

March 1st, 2018

Last week, the Wall Street Journal reported that Japanese officials approved the single-dose drug, known as Xofluza, for use in that country. In a clinical trial, Japanese and American patients who took the drug when they had the flu saw the virus wiped out, on average, in 24 hours.  The drug will be available in Japan in time for next year’s flu season, but not in the U.S. until 2019. Currently Tamiflu is used widely for shortening the duration of the flu virus in America.  Xofluza works differently by inhibiting an enzyme the flu virus needs to replicate. The drug can work in 24 hours because... Read More

Scientists Investigating Test for Autism

February 22nd, 2018

One in 68 U.S. children has an autism spectrum disorder, a 30% increase from 1 in 88 two years ago, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Scientists have taken the first steps towards what they say could become a new blood and urine test for autism. A study at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute tested children with and without the condition and found higher levels of protein damage in those with the disorder. The researchers said the tests could lead ultimately to the earlier detection of the condition, which can be difficult to diagnose. While prior research often focused... Read More

Three Reasons Why Life Expectancy Has Declined in the U.S.

February 15th, 2018

As one of the richest nation’s in the world, we should have a very high life expectancy.  For the second year in a row, however, life expectancy in the U.S. has fallen.  A study released last week in the British Medical Journal details the United States’ decline from the world leader in life expectancy rates, in the 1960s, to now 1.5 years below the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development’s (OECD) average. The National Research Council and Institute of Medicine set out to study why America’s new life expectancy, 78.7 years, falls so far below the OECD average of 80.3. The... Read More

A 21st Century Approach to Medication Adherence

February 8th, 2018

Last fall, the FDA approved a ‘digital pill’ that will tell your doctor if you’ve been taking your medicine.  The pill, which was approved by U.S. Food and Drug Administration on November 13, sends a signal to a wearable sensor when a patient has taken the medication, and that information is then sent to a doctor’s office. While this may seem reminiscent of the book 1984, the technology could help many who have trouble tracking their medications. Embedded in the pill is a sensor that consists of a silicon chip with the logic circuit, along with two pieces of metal. When the sensor... Read More

This Year’s Flu Is No Joke

February 1st, 2018

The CDC is reporting an unusually severe flu season this year.  The weekly “FluView” report put out by the agency states, “all U.S. states but Hawaii continue to report widespread flu activity and the number of states experiencing ‘high’ influenza activity increased from 32 states plus New York City and Puerto Rico to 39 states plus New York City and Puerto Rico.”  In its 13 years of flu monitoring, this is the first year that the continental U.S. showed widespread flu activity. Why is the flu so bad this year?  Different strains of influenza circulate each year. This year, influenza... Read More

In A Clench? It’s Not Good For Your Teeth.

January 25th, 2018

If you ever wake up in the morning with a tight or sore jaw, fatigue, or sensitive teeth, you could be grinding or clenching your teeth at night.  The condition, known as bruxism, can lead to headaches and dental problems. Teeth grinding can be caused by stress and anxiety,  and it often occurs during sleep, caused by an abnormal bite or missing or crooked teeth. More importantly, bruxism can be caused by sleep apnea. Obstructive sleep apnea occurs when the throat muscles relax during the night, blocking the airway and interrupting breathing. About 25% of people with obstructive sleep apnea grind... Read More

Delayed Gratification:  The Key to Successful Weight Loss?

January 18th, 2018

The Stanford marshmallow experiment was a series of studies on delayed gratification in the late 1960s and early 1970s led by psychologist Walter Mischel, then a professor at Stanford University. In these studies, a child was offered a choice between one small reward provided immediately or two small rewards if they waited for a short period-approximately 15 minutes.  In follow-up studies, the researchers found that children who were able to wait longer for the preferred rewards tended to have better life outcomes, such as educational achievement and body mass index. While the original study was... Read More

Why Happiness Is Important to Well-being

January 11th, 2018

Topophilia is a strong emotional pull to a special place.  Research says that people experience intense feelings of well-being, contentment, and belonging from places that evoke positive memories far more than treasured objects such as photographs or wedding rings. Why is contentment important to our well-being?  Happiness is about being able to make the most of the good times – but also to cope effectively with the inevitable bad times, in order to experience the best possible overall life. Happiness actually leads to a wide range of benefits for our performance, health, relationships, and... Read More

What Is Your Big WHY?

January 4th, 2018

Every new year brings with it resolutions, goals, intentions – whatever you want to call it.  In short, we make plans for how to be better versions of ourselves.  I’d like to suggest that we think differently about the new year by considering our big WHY? Your big why is something you plug into emotionally that drives you when things get tough. It’s not a wish or a goal, it’s something that will change your life or others around you or do something for you that really matters to your soul. It’s your purpose. If you made a resolution, you may already be feeling like you should... Read More

Soup IS Good Food

December 28th, 2017

Researchers think Tom Yum Gung, a zesty Thai soup, might have cancer-fighting ingredients as well as good taste. Also called hot and sour soup, Tom Yum Gung is a shrimp soup with herbal ingredients like coriander, lemon grass, lime leaves and even galangal roots, a pungent root similar to ginger. A recent joint study by Thailand’s Kasetsart University and Japan’s Kyoto and Kinki Universities has found that the ingredients in Tom Yum Gung soup are 100 times more effective in inhibiting cancerous tumor growth than other foods. Soup has long been thought to have health enhancing properties.... Read More

What About Your Diet?

December 21st, 2017

There is no perfect diet for everyone, in spite of what you might have heard.  It seems the human body can adapt to almost any diet and survive, even thrive!  Consider the diet of the Inuit, the people indigenous to polar locations such as Siberia, Alaska, Canada, and Greenland. Theirs is a mostly meat diet, and yet they are a hardy population who consume few to no vegetables in their diet. In the US, experts recommend a diet largely focused on healthy grains, fruits and vegetables.  Most Americans don’t get the recommended 5 servings per day, and even fewer eat the 5-9 servings that is considered... Read More

Music Has the Power to Calm, Soothe and Relieve Pain

December 14th, 2017

Hospitals around the country are using music therapy as a way to ease a patient’s pain, lower blood pressure, and reduce anxiety and depression, allowing patients to heal faster. Thirty-five percent of healthcare facilities in the US offer music, of some form, to their patients. An article in the journal, Pain Physician, indicates ​that music functions effectively to alleviate both chronic pain and related depression. In general, music was used in combination with other, more conventional pain treatments, rather than as a standalone substitute. Music that listeners find emotionally engaging... Read More

Give Yourself the Gift of Happiness

December 7th, 2017

Dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin, and endorphins are neurotransmitters that regulate our happiness.  A neurotransmitter is a messenger of neurologic information from one cell to another.  Being in a positive mental state has significant impact on our motivation, productivity, and wellbeing. Did you know you can intentionally cause neurotransmitters to flow? Let’s take a look at each one and how you can activate them to make yourself happy. Dopamine motivates us to take action toward goals, desires, and needs, and gives a surge of reinforcing pleasure when achieving them. Procrastination, self-doubt,... Read More

This Is Not Your Movie Theatre JuJube

November 30th, 2017

Maybe you’ve had JuJubes at the movies? The precursor to gummy bears, JuJubes are faux fruit flavored chewy candies that keep your dentist in business. The hot JuJube right now is actually Ziziphus jujuba, commonly called jujube, red date, Chinese date, Korean date, or Indian date. Mounting evidence shows the red date can protect us from inflammation, obesity, cancer, gastrointestinal maladies and, like any good superfood, has antioxidant properties. It grows mostly in South and East Asia, as well as in Australia and Europe, but is making an appearance in the American diet. Jujubes are also adaptogens,... Read More

A Spit Test May Diagnose Your Concussion

November 22nd, 2017

In 2013, the most recent year for which we have data, there were about 2.8 million traumatic brain injury-related emergency room visits, hospitalizations and deaths in the US, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Nearly two-thirds of concussions take place in children and teens and although most patients’ symptoms disappear within two weeks, one-third of children and teens may experience prolonged symptoms of concussion. Up to 25% of kids have long-term symptoms that can last up to four months. In a recent study, Penn State College of Medicine scientists found five... Read More

New Research Is Telling Us More About the Possible Cause of Dementia

November 17th, 2017

Over the years, researchers have tried to determine the cause of dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease.  Previously, researchers believed that amyloid was one of the proteins thought to cause the disease.  With new discoveries about the mysteries of dementia, there is a new culprit in the debate about what may cause dementia. Amyloid protein is thought to build up in the brain normally throughout life, but, at night, when we’re sleeping, particularly when we get into deep sleep, the protein gets cleared from the brain. Researchers are investigating the possible link between obstructive... Read More

Fitbit Is The Latest Tool in Health Research

November 8th, 2017

The Precision Medicine Initiative, a long-term research endeavor involving the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and multiple other research centers, aims to understand how a person’s genetics, environment, and lifestyle can help determine the best way to prevent or treat disease.  Last year, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) changed the initiative’s name to the warmer and fuzzier, All of Us, and began testing for a 2018 launch in hopes of achieving its goal of gaining anonymous health information from one million Americans. Fitbit is the first wearable device company to get the... Read More

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