Thursday, September 30, 2010

A Brief Look at Arthritis

Arthritis also is the leading cause of disability. Nearly 7 million people in the U.S., including 20% of people with arthritis, are unable to perform major life activities such as working or housekeeping because of this disease. Arthritis sufferers endure more days in severe pain, experience more days with limited ability to perform daily activities, and have more difficulty performing personal-care routines than people without arthritis. As with other chronic pain conditions, arthritis has negative effects on mental health. Some forms of arthritis also make your RealAge older.

The Definition of Rheumatoid Arthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis, known as Still's disease when it affects children, is a condition that causes inflammation of joints and associated pain, swelling, and stiffness. Rheumatoid arthritis causes the body's own immune system to attack joint tissue, breaking down collagen, cartilage, and sometimes bone or other organs. This chronic disease varies between people and fluctuates over time, often marked by symptoms that improve only to re-emerge later. In some cases rheumatoid arthritis is mild and lasts only a few months (this kind of rheumatoid arthritis is called type 1), while in others the disease becomes progressively complicated by disability and other health problems, lasting many years (this is called type 2 rheumatoid arthritis).

Rheumatoid arthritis most often affects the wrist and finger joints closest to the hand, but can also affect joints in the feet and throughout the body. Anyone can be affected by rheumatoid arthritis, but women are more likely to develop symptoms, which most often begin between the ages of 20 and 30. The causes of rheumatoid arthritis are not yet understood, but many effective strategies have been developed to manage its symptoms.

Rheumatoid Arthritis Symptoms and Signs
The main symptom of rheumatoid arthritis is joint stiffness in the morning, often in the hands or feet. Stiffness that persists for an hour or more, or swelling and pain that lasts for more than six weeks, may be indicative of rheumatoid arthritis. Joint discomfort is typically symmetrical, i.e. both hands will hurt or feel stiff, not just one. Early rheumatoid arthritis symptoms also may include fever, excessive tiredness, or pea-sized lumps called "nodules" that can be felt under the skin.

Other possible rheumatoid arthritis symptoms include anemia, appetite loss, and the accumulation of fluid in the ankles or behind the knee. In children, symptoms may include shaking chills and a pink rash may follow the characteristic painful and swollen joints.

Why Rheumatoid Arthritis Is Painful
How joint pain and the destruction of cartilage are related is not fully understood. Cartilage itself does not cause pain because there are no nerve structures in cartilage to transmit pain signals. Most likely, the pain of rheumatoid arthritis is caused by the irritation of other tissues in and around the affected joints. This irritation may be caused by chemical-messenger substances, such as prostaglandin E2, that are associated with the disease process. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) reduce pain because they inhibit the production of prostaglandins.

Other Conditions That Can Cause Pain
Pain and stiffness similar to rheumatoid arthritis symptoms can be caused by many other conditions. Even if injury or infection can be ruled out, anything from bunions to fibromyalgia or chronic fatigue syndrome can cause pain.

Only a medical professional can identify many sources of joint pain, because similar symptoms can result from other autoimmune diseases, from serious conditions such as cancer, or from many other kinds of arthritis.

The Causes of Rheumatoid Arthritis
The causes of rheumatoid arthritis are not fully understood, but important contributing factors have been identified. The self-destructive immune response of rheumatoid arthritis may be caused by a combination of genetic susceptibility and an environmental trigger. Changing hormones also may play an important part in the disease, possibly in response to an infection from the environment.

More than one gene has been linked to risk for rheumatoid arthritis. Specific genes may increase a person's chance of developing the disease, and also could partially determine how serious his or her condition is. However, since not all people with a genetic predisposition to rheumatoid arthritis actually have the disease, other factors must be important.

A specific environmental trigger has not yet been found, but some research suggests that infection by a virus or bacterium leads to rheumatoid arthritis in genetically susceptible people. This does not mean that rheumatoid arthritis is contagious. People with rheumatoid arthritis appear to have more antibodies in the synovial fluid in their joints, suggesting that there may be an infection.

Low levels of hormones from the adrenal gland are common in people with rheumatoid arthritis, but how hormones interact with environmental and genetic factors is unknown. Hormone changes may contribute to the progression of the rheumatoid arthritis.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

A Brief Introduction To Rheumatoid Arthritis

This is according to the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases.

You might not know it, but you could be suffering from rheumatoid arthritis. Although rheumatoid arthritis is commonly associated with the older generation (people over the age of 65), the disease is found in younger generations - even including children. How could you tell if you have it? Well if you're experiencing morning stiffness for no apparent reason (like if you had done a lot of strenuous exercise the night before, for example), you might be suffering from one of it's symptoms. As mild as you might think morning stiffness is, you really ought to give it some serious thought and consult with your doctor because if that morning stiffness is related to rheumatoid arthritis, you can work to prevent it from disabling or crippling you later on down the road to a point where you can barely function. But rheumatoid arthritis isn't just a physical condition. It has the propensity to tax your mental and emotional state of well-being tpp.

This is because arthritis can change the way you work, the way you interact with your family, and the way you entertain yourself with recreational activities. You might even know someone with rheumatoid arthritis and have observed how this disease changed not only his or her mobility, but also his or her outlook on life. Those of us without rheumatoid arthritis tend to take our ability to move anyway we want for granted, but when that ability slowly disappears right before our eyes, it's no surprise that we get depressed about it.

But it doesn't necessary have to be that way. With proper medications, education, support, and prescribed exercises, you could work to prevent the most severe forms of the disease - or at least prolong the worst case symptoms.

Arthritis works in two ways. First, it inflames the muscles, ligaments, and cartilage that sit in-between joints. And it's this inflammation that causes the pain, swelling, and heat. Those are symptoms that are typical indications of an injury and they're vital to understanding more about this disease. Second, arthritis works by releasing enzymes that basically consume or otherwise destroy the muscles, ligaments, and cartilage that have become inflamed to a point where they're not very useful and don't allow for easy movement. In the worse cases, cartilage disappears completely and as you can guess, this is extremely crippling and uncomfortable.

That's why we call rheumatoid arthritis a disease. Typically, inflamed muscles, ligaments, and cartilage are the result of an injury, like falling on the knees for example. But with arthritis, no injury has to occur. In fact, arthritis is a type of autoimmune disease and the cartilage inside joints is one of the things that it destroys. And any joint can be affected - one, two, maybe even more but most of the time, the disease targets fingers, hips, feet, and knees.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

A Brief History Of Hip Replacement Surgery

Hip replacement is a medical procedure in which the hip joint is replaced by a synthetic implant. It is the most successful, cheapest and safest form of joint replacement surgery. The earliest recorded attempts at hip replacement, which were carried out in Germany, used ivory to replace the femoral head.
Use of artificial hips became more widespread in the 1930s; the artificial joints were made of steel or chrome. They were considered to be better than arthritis but had a number of drawbacks. The main problem was that the articulating surfaces could not be lubricated by the body, leading to wear and loosening and hence the need to replace the joint again (known as revision operations).

Attempts to use teflon produced joints that caused osteolysis and wore out within two years. Another significant problem was infection. Before the advent of antibiotics, surgery on the joints carried a high risk of infection. Even with antibiotic treatments, infection is still a cause for some revision operations. Such infections are not necessarily caused at surgery; they can also be the result of bacteria entering the bloodstream during dental treatment.

The modern artificial joint owes much to the work of John Charnley at the Manchester Royal Infirmary; his work in the field of tribology resulted in a design that completely replaced the other designs by the 1970s. Charnley's design consisted of 3 parts – (1) a metal (originally Stainless Steel) femoral component, (2) an Ultra high molecular weight polyethylene acetabular component, both of which were fixed to the bone using (3) special bone cement. The replacement joint, which was known as the Low Friction Arthroplasty, was lubricated with synovial fluid.

The small femoral head (22.25mm) produced wear issues which made it suitable only for sedentary patients, but - on the plus side - a huge reduction in resulting friction led to excellent clinical results. For over two decades, the Charnley Low Friction Arthroplasty design was the most used system in the world, far surpassing the other available options (like McKee and Ring).

In 1960 a Burmese orthopaedic surgeon, Dr. San Baw (29 June 1922 – 7 December 1984), pioneered the use of ivory hip prostheses to replace ununited fractures of the neck of femur ('hip bones'), when he first used an ivory prosthesis to replace the fractured hip bone of an 83 year old Burmese Buddhist nun, Daw Punya. This was done while Dr San Baw was the chief of orthopeadic surgery at Mandalay General Hospital in Manadalay, Burma. Dr San Baw used over 300 ivory hip replacements from the 1960s to 1980s.

He presented a paper entitled 'Ivory hip replacements for ununited fractures of the neck of femur' at the conference of the British Orthopeadic Association held in London in September 1969. An 88% success rate was discerned in that Dr San Baw's patients ranging from the ages of 24 to 87 were able to walk, squat, ride the bicycle and play football a few weeks after their fractured hip bones were replaced with ivory prostheses. Dr San Baw's use of ivory was, at least in Burma during the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s (before the illicit ivory trade became rampant starting around the early 1990s) cheaper than metal. Moreover, due to the physical, mechanical, chemical, and biological qualities of ivory, it was found that there was a better 'biological bonding' of ivory with the human tissues nearby the ivory prostheses. An extract from Dr San Baw's paper, which he presented at the British Orthopeadic Association's Conference in 1969, is published in Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery (British edition), February 1970.

In the last decade, several evolutionary improvements have been made in the total hip replacement procedure and prosthesis. Many hip implants are made of a ceramic material rather than polyethylene, which some research indicates dramatically reduces joint wear. Metal-on-metal implants are also gaining popularity. Some implants are joined without cement; the prosthesis is given a porous texture into which bone grows. This has been shown to reduce the need for revision of the acetabular component. Surgeons still frequently use bone cement for the femoral component, however, which has proven very successful after 35 years of clinical experience.

The latest developments are several competing Minimally Invasive Surgery (MIS) approaches, which may result in far less soft tissue damage and a quicker recovery. C.A.O.S (Computer assisted orthopedic surgery) is also being marketed heavily by the implant manufacturers, though its value remains largely unproven.. Computer assisted surgery is said to better navigate prosthetic implantation.

An alternative to total hip replacement (THR) is hip surface replacement (HSR), also referred to as hip resurfacing. With both THR and HSR, a prosthetic socket is pressed into the pelvis. With THR, the end of the femur is amputated, a metal shank is inserted into the femur, and the shank holds a ball which mates with the socket. With resurfacing, the end of the femur is not amputated; the outer surface of the femoral ball is replaced with a cylindrical metal cap. Resurfacing eliminates the common THR problem of the metal shaft loosening from the femur. Resurfacing preserves bone stock if a revision is ever needed. A larger diameter ball and socket more closely mimic the natural joint structure, reducing the risk of dislocation and improving range of motion. There has been no published clinical evidence to show that today’s CoCr metal-on-metal articulating surfaces have the osteolytic effect on bone that earlier polyethylene devices had. Ten year success rates of hip resurfacing from studies in England report success equal to or greater than standard total hip replacement, in age-matched patients. In the United States, the first modern resurfacing device received FDA approval in May 2006, while some 90,000 resurfacings have been performed world-wide.

Patients need to be aware of all surgical options before hip replacement surgery. Hip surgeons have different surgical techniques and surgical outcomes. Currently, there are several different incisions used to access your hip joint. The posterior approach (widely used by the majority of orthopedic surgeons) separates the gluteus maximus muscle in line with the muscle fibers to access the hip joint. Other methods access the hip from the lateral side of the hip joint. In contrast to the posterior approach and lateral approach, the anterior approach uses a natural interval between soft tissue to gain access to the hip joint. Its main disadvantages are that it risks damage to the lateral femoral cutaneous nerve, and it is not widely available to the public because fewer surgeons have been trained in this technique.

Monday, September 27, 2010

A Brief History of Anesthetics

Anesthetics have been used for thousands of years. In fact, the first recorded use of anesthetics was actually in the 'pre-history' era, an era of human history predating written text.

Early Uses of Herbal Anesthetics

In the pre-history era, anesthetics were herbal in nature. Opium poppies are known to have been harvested as early as 4200 BC, and these plants were farmed first in the Sumerian Empire. The first recorded uses of anesthetics containing opium preparations was in 1500 BC, and by 1100 BC, civilizations in Cyprus and other locations were farming and harvesting the plants.

Opium poppies were introduced to India and China in 330 BC and 600 to 1200 AD, respectively. Other types of herbal anesthetics were in use in China during this era as well. In the second century, the Chinese physician Hua Tuo is known to have used an anesthetic derived from cannabis to perform abdominal surgery.

In Europe, Asia, and the Americas, several other 'solanum' plant species were used as anesthetics, including mandrake, henbane, and several datura species. Each of these contains a potent tropane alkaloid. In the classical Greek and Roman eras, prominent figures such as Hippocrates and Pliny the Elder noted the uses of opium and solanum-containing plants. In the Americas, the leaves of the coca plant (from which cocaine is derived) were an often-used anesthetic. This was applied by Incan shamans who would chew coca leaves and then spit the leaves into wounds to administer a local anesthetic.

Herbal anesthetics of these types were widely used for several centuries; however they were not without drawbacks. One of the main problems with the use of herbal anesthetics was in administering the right dosage-too little would have no effect, and too much often killed the patient. Standardization of anesthetics was difficult, but was achieved to a certain degree prior to the nineteenth century by categorizing anesthetics according to the location in which anesthetic plants were grown.

The Discovery of Morphine

In 1804, a German pharmacist named Friedrich Wilhelm extracted morphine from the opium poppy, and named the compound 'morphium', for the Greek god of sleep and dreams. However, morphine was not widely used for nearly fifty years. In 1853, the hypodermic needle was developed, and thanks to this new method of administration, the use of morphine increased substantially. Morphine was then widely used as an anesthetic.

In 1874, a morphine derivative called diacetylmorphine-commonly known as heroin-was developed. Nearly twice as potent as morphine, heroin was marketed for a short time by Bayer, starting in 1898. However, it was just 16 years later in 1914 that the possession of morphine, heroin, and cocaine without a prescription was outlawed in the US due to the highly addictive nature of these substances.

Development of Inhalant Anesthetics

Oral and inhalant anesthetics were utilized historically by Muslim anesthesiologists, and the use of these preparations was well known in the Islamic Empire. Several hundred surgical operations were performed which used sponges soaked in narcotic preparations, placed over the face of the individual undergoing surgery.

In the Western world, the development of inhalant anesthetics, along with the use of sterile surgical techniques developed by Joseph Lister, was one of the main keys to performing successful surgery in the nineteenth century.

During the nineteenth century, both carbon dioxide and nitrous oxide were used in experimental surgical procedures. While the use of carbon dioxide as an anesthetic never became popular, nitrous oxide did in fact become very widely used.

The anesthetic properties of nitrous oxide were first noted by Humphry Davy, a British chemist, in a paper published in 1800. However, it was not until several decades later in the 1840s that nitrous oxide became more widely used. One of the first successful uses of the gas for painless tooth extraction was carried out by American dentist William Thomas Green Morton, in 1846.

During the same decade, an inhalant anesthetic called diethyl ether was also used for tooth extraction. Diethyl ether was originally synthesized by German physician Valerius Cordus in 1540; however it was not until the 1840s that the first public demonstration of the use of ether occurred. A decade earlier, in the 1830s, chloroform had also been developed. This became more popular in Britain, but even so the dangers of both ether and chloroform were well-noted.

Modern Anesthetics

Modern anesthetics are of two types: general and local anesthetics. Local anesthetics include substances such as lidocaine and procaine. These work by preventing transmission of nerve impulses in the area where the anesthetic is administered. General anesthetics, on the other hand, are more similar in nature to nitrous oxide in their method of delivery, and in fact this inhalant anesthetic is still in use. Inhalation anesthetics are usually fluorochemicals (isoflurane, sevoflurane and desflurane) that have much lower flammability than diethyl ether, thus they are much safer to use in the operating room.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

A Breath Of Fresh Air

All over the world, there is a concerted effort from different sectors of the government to enact stiffer anti-smoking laws due to the overwhelming evidence that cigarette smoking causes lung cancer and other serious diseases. These laws are also being made to deter the proliferation of second hand smoke that causes serious diseases and premature deaths in both adults and children.
There is no more question regarding the veracity of the ill-effects of cigarettes to people who smoke as well as to those who do not smoke. Second hand smoke is a proven cause of lung cancer and heart disease in non-smoking adults. It is also blamed for the so-called sudden infant death syndrome, low birth weight, acute respiratory infections, ear infections and asthma attacks in infants and children. It is responsible for tens of thousands of deaths in the United States of America each year.
There is no risk-free level of exposure to second hand smoke. Every exposure has substantial and immediate adverse effects on cardiovascular and respiratory health. Each cigarette actually contains more than 50 carcinogens.
It is about time that a comprehensive smoke-free law is enacted that will be applied to all workplaces and public places. Comprehensive smoke-free workplace policies are the only effective way to protect non-smokers from second hand smoke. Other approaches, such as the installation of air ventilation systems and the setting-up of smoking and non-smoking sections of rooms are not effective and do not not eliminate chances of exposure.
Contrary to what the critics are saying, the laws protect the health of the general public without harming the business sector. Evidence from peer-reviewed studies shows that smoke-free policies and regulations do not have an adverse economic impact on the hospitality industry.
With this report, all arguments and excuses not to take action are eliminated. Many research and hard economic data have revealed that smoke-free laws do not harm sales or employment in restaurants and bars. In fact, they sometimes have positive feedbacks, such as what happened in New York City after the law has taken effect, business receipts for bars and restaurants increased, their job employment rose, and the number of liquor licenses increased. This happened despite the fact that most establishments complied with the law, and the great majority of New Yorkers supported the law.
Another positive outcome is that smoke-free laws resulted in significant cash savings. According to statistics from the Society of Actuaries in the United States, second hand smoke cost the country around US$ 10 billion a year in health care bills, lost wages, and related expenses.
Even the corporate world has joined the bandwagon by maintaining smoke-free workplaces and providing a specified area for smoking. Some countries, states, provinces, territories, and districts have adopted full smoking bans inside restaurants and bars. Second hand smoke, or passive smoking, is a major preventable cause of death. Since smoking hurts more people than just smokers, smoke-free laws need to be upheld at all times to protect everyone's right to breathe clean air.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

A Blog Brings In A Buyer Of Generic Viagra

Sometime during 2003, Ching Yin sat down at his computer. He wanted to search the Internet for specific medical information. Ching had a medical problem, one he did not feel comfortable talking about. He thought maybe he could get some information at one of the many web sites that offered details on various medical conditions.

Ching started to type in the word "medical." He planned to have the search engine look for a medical treatment for ED. Ching had learned the two letters used by doctors whenever they discussed the condition that was his own, personal medical problem.

Ching did not expect to get information about Generic Viagra or Generic Cialis by searching for a medical treatment for ED, but he did not realize what his fingers would do. Ching’s fingers slipped as he typed in "medical." Rather than telling the search engine to search for medical information, he told it to search for articles related to "mei."

Ching soon found himself reading a blog. It was the new blog started by Muzi Mei. It contained many details about her latest sexual experiences. As Ching read that blog, he realized that the man with whom Muzi Mei had had sex had had ED. He had used pills to help him get rid of his ED.

Ching could not believe his luck. He had given the search engine the wrong clue, but he was still getting the information that he needed. Ching wrote down the web address for Muzi Mei’s blog. For the next two weeks, Ching went to that web site everyday. He kept close watch for new material on that blog.

During those two weeks Ching read about an effort undertaken by the blog writer. It was an effort to find two special products. One was Generic Viagra and the other was Generic Cialis. Ching discovered that those products could be used to treat ED. They were ED pills.

Ching had never heard of those products before. He wanted to know more about them. Ching typed "Generic Viagra" onto his computer screen and clicked on "search." He got the names of dozens of useful web sites. Next Ching typed in the words "Generic Cialis." Again a click on "search" led to a listing of many useful web sites.

Ching could not visit all of the web sites in one sitting. He set aside a short period of every day for visiting one or more of the listed web sites. In that way Ching managed to learn more about ED and about ED pills.

Ching was glad to read that ED only indicated a failure of blood to flow into the penis. Ching had thought that perhaps his ED represented a sign that he was not a true "man." Ching could see that the way his blood was flowing in his body should not be seen as a sign that he was any less of a "man."

Ching was glad that his fingers had not typed in the word he had originally planned to type into the computer. Ching set aside some extra money, hoping to buy some ED pills.

Friday, September 24, 2010

A Bird-Flu Pandemic Could Start Tomorrow

Bird flu is a disease caused by a specific type of avian (bird) influenza virus, the so-called H5N1 virus. This virus was first discovered in birds in China in 1997 and since then has infected 125 people in Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, and Indonesia, killing 64 of them. It is spread by infected migratory birds (including wild ducks and geese) to domestic poultry (primarily chickens, ducks, and turkeys), and then to humans.

Since 1997, and especially since the beginning of 2004, approximately 150 million birds have either died from the disease or been killed to prevent further spread. Nevertheless, this very infectious and deadly virus has spread relentlessly to China, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Laos, Russia, Indonesia, Mongolia, Kazakhstan, Malaysia, Turkey, Romania, England, Croatia, Macedonia, and other countries. This ongoing geographic extension of the virus is of great concern around the world. It is feared that it will continue to spread to all continents, including the Western Hemisphere—and it no doubt will.

Normally, different types of viruses infect just one, or a limited number, of species specific to the particular virus type. The bird-flu virus, however, has infected a large number of birds and animals, including ducks, chickens, turkeys, tree sparrows, peregrine falcons, great black-headed gulls, brown-headed gulls, gray herons, Canada geese, bar-headed geese, little egrets, pigs, clouded leopards, white tigers, mice, domestic cats, crows, magpies, peacocks, blue pheasants, rare eagles, turtledoves, swans, terns, and others. This is another sign of the virulence or destructiveness of the virus.

Researchers, historians, and infectious-disease experts have determined that influenza pandemics (global epidemics) occur approximately once every 30 years. The most deadly pandemic ever recorded occurred in 1918-19, killing more than 100 million people across the globe in less than two years. Two other much less severe pandemics occurred, one in 1957, when approximately two million people died, and one in 1968, when about one million people died. Because we have already had three pandemics in less than 100 years, we are “overdue” for another one.

And so this disease-causing virus continues to infect more and more species in more and more countries. In laboratory experiments, it has been shown to be one of the most lethal influenza viruses ever known. In addition, just recently and after 10 years of work, researchers determined that the H5N1 bird-flu virus is genetically more similar to the deadly 1918-19 influenza pandemic virus than to the viruses which caused the much less severe pandemics of 1957-58 and 1968-69.

To summarize the important points so far: The bird-flu virus is a very deadly strain of avian influenza called H5N1 that has killed millions of birds; 2) the virus is spreading relentlessly around the world; 3) the virus has infected many species, which is uncharacteristic of most viruses; 4) the virus has been shown to be similar to the most deadly virus ever known, which caused the 1918-19 pandemic; 5) the virus has been shown to be much more deadly in laboratory experiments than regular influenza viruses; and 6) the virus is known to have infected at least 125 humans and killed 64 of them so far, yielding a fatality rate of approximately 50 percent.

The virus continues to kill humans, but at a slow rate—it has not yet acquired the capacity to be easily transmissible between humans; humans become infected primarily from sick birds. Because humans alive today have no natural immunity to the H5N1 virus, once it becomes easily transmissible between humans a pandemic or global epidemic will occur. The central question is, when will it exchange enough genetic material with the usual seasonal human influenza-viruses to become more like a human-influenza virus—and thus become easily transmissible between people?

Many people believe that the virus will continue to spread around the world until it is present in most or all countries—before it will “go human” (become easily transmissible between people). And that may be the case. The pandemic of 1918-19 is thought to have started in Kansas (of all places). So it is certainly possible that the coming pandemic could start somewhere else than in Asia—although most experts believe it will, in fact, start there. It could start in a country which has not yet been host to the virus.

However, it is most certainly not necessary for the virus to march all the way around the world before a pandemic can begin. The fact that the virus already has spread to more than 15 countries, and to many different bird and animal species, provides the opportunity for it to commingle with a human-influenza virus and create the dreaded human contagion. There is no known reason why this could not happen tomorrow. While it is true that the probability of the switch increases with time, the probability of its happening tomorrow is far from zero.

The flip side to the possibility that the crossover could happen at any time is the fact that the virus has been around at least since 1997 and, as a matter of record, has not yet switched to a deadly human-to-human form. At least a few scientists believe that the virus can’t and won’t make the switch to a deadly form, possibly ever.

And so we are left with these two very different possibilities—at any time, and as soon as tomorrow, the virus could mutate into a deadly form, readily transmissible between people—or it might never transform itself into such a form. There appears to be much more evidence for the former and, presumably, that is why the vast majority of scientists and governments are scrambling to prepare for the worst.

This situation is analogous to living on the Gulf Coast during the beginning of hurricane season. Residents there have been through it before, but most of the time the storms are not too severe and the people can get by without too much hassle. However, there have been rare severe storms that have been devastating. Some day another hurricane is coming, and it appears that it might well be a Category IV or even V by the time it strikes land. However, that’s not certain—no one can say for sure, and no one knows exactly when it will strike land. So what should the residents do? What should the residents have done before hurricane Katrina?

The coming bird-flu pandemic might be mild and it might not come for years. On the other hand, it might be severe and it might start tomorrow. The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) has said, “While the severity of the next pandemic cannot be predicted, modeling studies suggest that its effect in the United States could be severe.” We should also be mindful that the pandemic could come at any time, even before the virus methodically marches around the globe. No matter how advanced science has become, we still can not predict when the switch will occur; it is currently unknowable—and that does not mean it will come later, in a predictable fashion. As Miguel de Cervantes admonished, “Forewarned, forearmed.”

Bradford Frank, M.D., M.P.H., M.B.A.
The Frank Group
P.O. Box 138
Lakewood, NY 14750

Thursday, September 23, 2010

A Better Understanding Of Arthritis

The term "Arthritis" refers to more than 100 different types of diseases which all cause pain, stiffness, and inflammation in the joints of affected people. All arthritis conditions involve some form of joint pain or the other. However, the seriousness of the joint pain, the duration of the joint pain and degree of the joint pain vary from one type of arthritis to another.

The two most prevalent types of arthritis include Osteoarthritis and Rheumatoid arthritis. Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis, in which joint cartilage is destroyed. In other cases of Osteoarthritis, the patient experiences bony outgrowth, also known as bone spurs and also lose of cartilage particles.

Osteoarthritis affects mostly aged people, from 55 years and older. That is why most people say it is an 'aged disease' of the joints. Osteoarthritis is mostly common in the hands, feet, spine, hips and knees of victims.

In rheumatoid arthritis, the patient experiences white blood cells in the synovial membrane dividing, growing and multiplying. These produce inflammation of the joint capsule and synovial membrane, loss of space in the synovial cavity, pain and stiffness in the joint. If there is no arthritis relief and treatment, this may lead to cartilage destruction.

Apart from these types of arthritis, another type of arthritis that commonly affects people is "Inflammatory Arthritis". This type of arthritis causes very severe inflammation in the joints and the tendons of the victims.

This is mostly characterized by the swelling and inflammation of the synovial membrane - thereby causing severe pain and stiffness in the joints of the victims. Inflammatory arthritis makes the joint look red and warm when touched. Arthritis relief for victims is necessary to reduce the pain.

Arthritis relief is therefore very important, especially in a country like the United States where Arthritis is the number one cause of physical disability. There are an estimated total number of 43 million Americans - 16 percent of the population, suffering from one form of arthritis or the other.

It is not only adults who need arthritis relief, but also children. In the United States, about 300,000 children suffer from one type of arthritis related disease or another. Children, being very susceptible to pain, need arthritis relief and treatment more than ever before. Unlike adults who can endure joint pains to a great degree, children cannot and therefore need arthritis relief as soon as the problem starts.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

A better “help-sleep” drug

Have you been tossing and rolling in bed lately? Staring endlessly in the ceiling till the wee hours of the morning while counting sheep? Then you are suffering from sleeping disorder or insomnia. Insomnia can also be defined as difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep, waking up too early, or waking up feeling worn out. Almost everyone has brief encounters with insomnia. Studies show that about 10% of Americans suffer from insomnia.

Though there are really no concrete causes of insomnia. Experts claim that conditions that may cause it may vary from person to person. Health factors such as heart ailment, sleep apnea, asthma can result in insomnia for some individuals. While environmental factors like a simple sound, an uncomfortable mattress or pillow may cause a difference in the sleep patterns for a few. Diet also plays a role in the development of insomnia. Excess caffeine or food consumed close to bedtime may affect the quality of sleep. Other reasons of insomnia are anxiety, depression, and stress. Be sure to evaluate yourself of the factors mentioned if you are having difficulty in your sleep. However these episodes of sleeplessness usually last for a few nights and the sleep pattern returns to its normal. This happens when the cause of the sleep disturbance is settled. If an individual suffer from insomnia for a month or more, treatment is required to restore the sleeping pattern back to normal

The effects of insomnia are alarming. Poor health, fatigue, impatience, diminished mental alertness and memory, and irritability are some of the common effects of insomnia. Because of the harmful effects of sleep disorder a number of individuals are sometimes forced to miss work or school days. Others often feel exhausted in social gatherings because of lack of sleep.

Several medications have been developed to treat insomnia. Ambien is taken orally immediately before bedtime on an empty stomach or as directed by a physician. Ambien is not intended for long term use and is usually taken for duration of 7 to 10 days. Ambien intake should never be increased or taken for extended periods unless prescribed by your doctor

Common Ambien side effects are daytime drowsiness, dizziness, headache, nausea, upset stomach, vomiting, and dry mouth. When you are rising from a seated or lying position, get up slowly to avoid dizziness. The use of alcoholic beverages may aggravate the harmful effects of Ambien and should therefore be avoided.

Because Ambien causes drowsiness, it should be used with caution. One should refrain driving or other similar activities while under medication. If other effects of Ambien are noticed other than the ones listed, inform your doctor or pharmacist.

Ambien is available on line through Be aware of your body’s physical response to sleep medications. Ambien does not promise normal sleeping patterns after a week or ten-day intake. Immediately discontinue use if acute adverse effects are experienced or if you are unhappy with the result.

Since small amounts of Ambien are found in breast milk, breast feeding mothers are not encouraged to take this drug.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

A Beginner's Guide To Using Aromatherapy With Children

Trust your instinct - a beginner’s guide to using aromatherapy with children:

Essential oils are pure aromatic plant essences – they are distilled from flowers, fruit, leaves, resins, roots, seeds, and wood. The are used for their healing properties the world over – in , for example, they are only available through licensed, qualified parishioners. In the United States, we have free access to essential oils – but with this comes with some important cautions: Only some of the essential oils available are suitable for children; others are not suitable for children and some are even dangerous to children (children with epilepsy should not come in contact with stimulating essential oils).

When used correctly however, essential oils can be of great benefit, and will not conflict with your child’s medically prescribed drugs. Always research the oil of choice thoroughly before using with your infant or child – ask advice from a qualified practitioner, or see the references at the end of this article.

That said, essential oils can be a wonderful way of supporting your child's health, happiness and well-being. Essential oils can be very therapeutic and nurturing to both your child and you, the caregiver. Essential oils are used externally (on the outside of the body) in your child’s bath, body lotions, oils, creams, gels, compresses, foot baths, or in a oil warmer. The effects of aromatherapy will generally fall into one of three main categories: 1) Assisting in healing from minor illnesses and accidents, 2) Supporting your child’s overall sense of well-being, and 3) Assisting your child in getting quality rest.

When using essential oils with your child, it is imperative that you find a reputable supplier of therapeutic-grade essential oils, using organic or wildcrafted varieties when possible. Synthetic copies of oils commonly used in perfumery are not appropriate, and may even be harmful to your child’s health. To maintain efficacy, essential oils should be kept in dark amber or cobalt glass containers, in a dark and cool location, away from the child’s access. Wooden storage boxes from craft or 'Pier One' type stores can make a nice container for the bottles.

Methods of Using Essential Oils

There are two methods of using essential oils with your child – INHALATION: through a diffuser, nebulizer, or adding to a humidifier reservoir, and TOPICAL APPLICATION: diluting the essential oil in a carrier oil and applying topically. Adding essential oils to a bath combines the two methods, though we will cover it under topical application.

For topical application, essential oils are diluted in varying strengths depending on the use and age of your child. The concentration can vary from one drop of essential oil per tablespoon of carrier oil, to a couple of drops per teaspoon of carrier added to a drawn bath, to an equal ratio of carrier and essential oil applied directly to your child’s feet (as in the case of gentle Lavender). In other words, there is a huge variation in dilution levels depending on the circumstances. Mamas, do your research and then trust your instinct. Only you and your child baby know exactly what is right for your situation.

General dilution rate guidelines of essential oils in one ounce of carrier oil:

Age of Child and amount of Essential Oil per One Ounce Carrier Oil for Topical/Massage Application:

Newborn (Consult primary care physician before use)

1-3 drops essential oil / ounce
2-6 months
1-3 drops essential oil / ounce
6-12 months
1-4 drops essential oil / ounce
1-4 years (unless very small)
5-8 drops essential oil / ounce
6-7 years
5-10 drops essential oil / ounce
9-12 years
5-12 drops essential oil / ounce
12 years to young adult
10-15 drops essential oil / ounce

DO NOT USE AN ESSENTIAL OIL NEAT (undiluted ) on children’s skin, unless indicated to do so for a specific condition. If your child has very sensitive skin, it is important to test a small area before using a new single oil or blend. Keep essential oils away form the eyes. When using citrus oils - orange, bergamot, lemon, tangerine, mandarin, and lime - do not use where the skin will be exposed to sunlight for the next 12 hours. These oils are considered 'phototoxic', and can react from the sun's rays. They may be used in a bath, however, where they will be washed off the skin when the bath is done.

Essential oils are not to be taken orally (by mouth). When your child is taking medications, reduce the amount of essential oil by half the amount recommended for their age group.

Carrier oils for children

Sweet Almond oil is generally regarded as the safest and best overall carrier oil for use with babies and children. Apricot kernel oil is also considered extremely safe with children over 6. Jojoba oil can be added at about 10% concentration for any blend – it has a soothing effect on the skin and is good for hair.

Topical Application - Nurturing Touch Massage Recipes

There is nothing better for any child than the loving, nurturing touch of a parent. A gentle hug, a smile, a kiss on the cheek all reassure the child and help the parent and child to bond. These everyday forms of connection are instinctual and children thrive from it.

Research shows that massage can help children’s growth both physically and emotionally. In hospitals, studies done with premature baby’s show that touch is an essential aspect of the children’s ability to thrive.

Using aromatherapeutic nurturing touch massage can be therapeutic to both the child and the parent. Using a light, conscientious tough you can massage your child’s feet, arms, hands, back, abdomen, and even legs. The massage should always be done with loving intention and the work is done in the direction that the blood flows-from ankles to leg; from wrist to shoulder, etc.

Here are a few suggested blends for this wonderful method – each is in one (1) ounce of Sweet Almond oil:

Restful Sleep – 4 drops lavender, 2 drops Roman Chamomile

Happy Child – 3 drops Rose, 1 drop Neroli

Calm and Relaxed – 3 drops Petitgrain, 3 drops Neroli

Emotional Nurturing – 1 drop Rose, 1 drop Vanilla, 2 drops Lavender

For a Baby oil blend, to be used as a moisturizer OR massage oil (note: the frequent washing of a baby's skin actually makes it difficult for them to retain vitamin C; application of a quality skin oil will help them keep adequate supplies of this important nutrient).

1 ounce of organic sweet almond oil or hazelnut oil
1 drop of pure Lavender essential oil
1 drop of Vanilla essential oil


1 ounce of organic sweet almond oil
2 drops of pure Lavender essential oil
1 drop of pure Chamomile (German) essential oil

The above blends can also be added to the bath. One teaspoon with the following amount of essential oils added can be added AFTER the bath is filled, per the age of the child: 3-5 years, 2 drops; 6-8 years, 3 drops; 8-11 years, 5 drops. Perhaps the easiest way to do this would be to make a full strength blend (without carrier oil) of your choice, then dilute as needed for the application.

Inhalation of essential oils

For inhalation, one can apply one or two drops to a handkerchief and inhale, or add oils to a water misting bottle or humidifier. Calming essential oils that may be used are Lavender (recommended for sleep – one to four drops can be placed under the pillow), Mandarin, Roman Chamomile, Ho Wood (an ecologically friendly replacement for Rosewood), Tangerine, Petitgrain, Vanilla, and Neroli. Use these oils singly, create your own blend, or use one of the body oil blends above without the carrier oil. A few drops per quart of water in a mister sprayed throughout a room or added humidifier resevoir will do.

For an anti-anxiety blend: Try 5 drops bergamot, 1 drop lavender and 3 drops geranium – dilute to 10 drops per ½ pint of water for a room spray or use in a humidifier, or dilute to the appropriate level for your child's age if using topically. For alertness, try lemon, bergamot, grapefruit or pine, either singly or in a blend that pleases your senses (usually the best way to blend is to trust your nose!)

Essential oils can also be used in a candle lamp or warmer – with the oil gently evaporated from the surface of a small bowl of water by the heat of a candle. An electric nebulizing diffuser is generally not recommended for use with children, as the concentration of oils in the air can be too high.

Last but not least, essential oils are wonderful antiseptics.

Cuts and scrapes are simply a way of life for the little ones! A great blend for minor wounds is a 1:1 mix of Lavender and Tea Tree oil. The lavender is soothing, anti-inflammatory, and has regenerative 'ketones', while the tea tree is a strong antiseptic used for many generations by native Australians. Use this blend in the water used for cleaning wounds, and apply a few drops to the gauze of a bandage – do not apply directly to the skin as it will be unnecessarily irritating. On the bandage, however, it will be soothing and accelerate the healing process.

So this is a very brief overview of using essential oils with children. There are many, many diverse applications for essential oils for almost every conceivable minor ailment seen in childhood. The key is knowledge – finding a good practitioner, or reputable resource for your needs. For further reading, books by Valerie Ann Woorwood are excellent: "Aromatherapy for the Healthy Child" and "The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy"; for safety data, see "Essential Oil Safety" by Robert Tisserand and Tony Balacs. The essential oils mentioned within this article are recognized as safe for most individuals – if you or your child are recognized as having a specific illness, and/or are under a doctor's regular care, please consult an appropriate practitioner before proceeding.

That said, aromatherpy can be a very fun and rewarding endevor for both you and your child. Essential oils have benefited the lives of many the world over, and have a little bit of plant magic available to everyone.

Monday, September 20, 2010

A beginner’s guide to ginseng

There is a bewildering array of ways to eat, drink or take ginseng, to the point where it can be difficult for a beginner to even know where to start.

The simplest way to take ginseng is to simply eat the leaves from the plant. Unfortunately, unless you’re used to it, ginseng has a distinctly odd taste, which makes the experience a little unpleasant. Also, fresh, unprepared leaves will not last very long, which is makes fresh ginseng impractical if you don’t live in a ginseng-producing country.

The most common way to consume ginseng is to make it into a ginseng tea, by slicing up the leaves and then soaking it them in hot water. Dried, red ginseng can also be used for this, if it is put inside a teabag or similar device to keep the small dried leaf pieces from falling into the liquid.

There are also some more unusual ways to take ginseng. A popular preparation method in China is to take some ginseng leaves and some chicken, steam them together twice, and then serve it as a soup – it tastes mainly of chicken, but has all the health benefits of ginseng.

Ginseng in health food shops is often also available in more medicinal forms, such as pills, tablets and creams. Although these are easier to use, you may find that they are less effective compared to the leaves themselves, especially if the medicine also contains some other herbs.

If you’re just starting out and taking ginseng for the first time, probably the best place to start out is with the tea, as ginseng is far more powerful as a relaxing drink than it is as a medicine – see if you can find ginseng teabags containing dried leaves in your local herb-selling shop. To a certain extent, the smell and taste are as important as the actual consumption if you want to get the full range of benefits that ginseng offers.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

A Battle of Great Proportions: The Fight Against Obesity

Recent studies came up with a statistical figure that approximately fifty-eight million men and women are overweight; roughly forty million are obese; and around three million are morbidly obese. Another study said that eight out of ten adults over twenty-five are overweight.

Being overweight and obese has been an on-going concern for a lot of adults. Surveys say that the population of obese people has increased drastically in the United States alone, and that cases of obesity-related health risks have grown at an alarming rate.

Contributing factors
A variety of factors play a contributory role in obesity, and these are:
1.Energy imbalance. This occurs when the amount of calories consumed does not amount to the amount of calories used or burned.
2.Calorie consumption. The availability of a lot of pre-packaged foods, fast food restaurants, and soft drinks which are generally high in fat, sugar, and calories contributes to an excessive calorie intake.
3.Calorie usage. People are becoming more and more sedentary, and the lack of physical activity is causing the excess calorie to become stored fat.
4.Environment. People spending too much time inside the house in front of the television may find it less enticing to go out for a walk or engage in any sporty activities.
5.Genetics. Genes play a part in passing on disorders that may cause obesity.
6.Diseases. Illnesses like Cushing’s disease, Bardet-Biedl syndrome, and Prader-Willi syndrome may cause obesity.
7.Medications. Drugs such as steroids and some antidepressants may cause significant weight gain.

Complications/Risk factors
Obesity isn’t just a simple concern for one’s appearance, it causes a multitude of health dilemma that can be harmful to the health. Among these complications are: Insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, stroke, heart attack, congestive heart failure, cancer, gallstones, gouty arthritis, osteoarthritis, sleep apnea, and pickwickian syndrome.

Weight loss
Now that you’ve learned of the repercussions of being overweight and obese, it’s time to consider shedding off some pounds. Here are some ways to lose weight:

Diet. Watch what you eat. This doesn’t mean you have to starve yourself or count how much you eat. A balanced diet makes sure that your body is nourished with the necessary nutrients needed for the day.
Exercise. Integrating a simple exercise routine for an hour or two everyday may prove helpful to burn off calories you ate. This may be as simple as walking a block or two, doing a set or two of sit-ups, or performing basic stretching exercises.
Surgery. Weight loss surgery is performed only for severe obesity cases where diet and exercise has very little effect. This is advised for people suffering from serious obesity-related health concerns. The operation aides in weight loss by restricting food intake and, in other operations, interrupt the digestive process.

Living with obesity is difficult. Much more if you’re living with its complications. Keep in mind that you don’t have to stay obese. Stand up and take action. Rid yourself of this heavy burden and work your way out to a slimmer, healthier you. Take comfort in knowing that you have the power to save yourself from obesity.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

A Basic Overview of Chinese Medicine

There is an undeniable mystique that accompanies Traditional Chinese Medicine or TCM, a range of traditional medical and therapeutic practices developed in China over thousands of years. In fact, one of the earliest known compilations on Chinese medical practices dates back to 2698 B.C. To the uninformed, it is assumed that TCM is all about the use of exotic products such as bat excrement and cow urine as medicine. Many also wrongly assume that the diagnosis and treatment offered by TCM practitioners is nothing more than just guesswork; and that these practitioners do not really have actual abilities to discern the patient's symptoms.

In truth, Traditional Chinese Medicine is a complex and centuries-old system that has been shown to be effective in the treatment and management of various ailments ranging from sinusitis to muscle spasms. Chinese herbal concoctions have also shown efficacy in providing migraine reliefs and lower back pain relief, and everything in between.

The core concepts of traditional Chinese medicine can be found in Chinese philosophy, with Wu Xing and the concept of yin and yang as the primary foundations of both diagnosis and treatment practices. The basic perception of the body in Chinese medicine is that it is a whole, but with separate parts. The parts are designed to work together in harmony, generally by balancing their naturally opposing concepts against one another. Each part not only serves a physical function, but is also important to mental processes. This explains the belief in Chinese medicine that what affects one's physical health also has consequences for one's mental health, with each imbalance in the body having a counterpart imbalance in the mind. This aspect echoes the principles of yin and yang, which is best summarized as a blending of two opposing but complimentary concepts, with neither one being superior in any way over the other. Disharmony is said to occur when yin or yang becomes more prevalent in the body than the other. This disharmony or imbalance is thought to be the reason behind human illnesses.

The Wu Xing aspect comes into play in terms of analyzing how the disharmony came about. Wu Xing is similar to the classical concept of the basic elements which are composed of fire, water, wood, earth, and metal. Each of these elements can be found in the body, with varying concentrations in different areas of the body. Combined, the elements produce a delicate balance and results in the normal state of a person's physical and mental health. This balance can be affected by internal and external factors, which can sway the elemental balance in a variety of ways. In theory, an increase in certain elements in areas that perform certain functions can sway the yin and yang balance, thus affecting a person's health.

The treatment for the condition, whether it be sinusitis, lower back pain, knee pain, migraine headaches, visual migraines, insomnia or whatever else ails the patient is ultimately determined by where the imbalance is and what caused it. For example, an excess of water that swayed the balance more to the yang in the nasal area is sometimes cited to cause problems such as colds and sinusitis. To counter this, a traditional Chinese doctor might prescribe a formula composed of herbs and more exotic ingredients to help suppress the water element and, thus, restore balance to the yin and yang.

Traditional Chinese medicine also espouses a number of other treatments, including those based on the manipulation of the patient's diet.

Another famous aspect or branch of Traditional Chinese Medicine is called acupuncture, a technique that involves the insertion of needles into the skin on specific points around the body to help restore “balance” between the Yin and Yang. Acupuncture is also the branch of TCM that is concerned with the treatment of what Western medicine would term as mental health disorders including anxiety and phobias. Acupuncture is seen as an effective means of balancing the flow of “chi” or internal energy throughout the body. In TCM, the need to balance the yin and yang of the mind and heart is as important as attaining balance in the human body.

Modern TCM practitioners in China, however, do acknowledge that there are situations when the traditional remedies can no longer put the body back in proper balance. In most cases, when such situations are encountered, the patient is advised to consult a doctor who practices Western medicine. However, this does not create a conflict between the two schools since most Chinese patients and doctors actually appreciate the “balance” between Eastern and Western medical theory and practice. For example, Chinese people will have no problems with surgery for appendicitis. At the same time, they will see no conflict in using traditional herbal formulas to help recover after the surgery, or to prevent the appendicitis in the first place. This is often in sharp contrast to the attitude of some practitioners of traditional Western medicine who tends to dismiss other medical philosophies, theories or schools as mere quackery.

Friday, September 17, 2010

A Basic Guide on Medications for Acne

Over the years acne has affected millions of people in their early teens and for many on into their adult life. Each year new acne treatments hit the market, each claiming to stop further acne breakouts. Yet no one medication for acne has been proven to do that.

If you're like so many acne sufferers, and have a medicine cabinet full of various acne medications that don't work, you need to stop and get back to the basics of acne care. Your first step is to become knowledgeable about what acne is and how it develops. Visit your doctor, or better yet consult with a dermatologist about your acne condition. Your dermatologist may recommend over-the-counter medications for acne or if your acne is severe, you may need perscription acne medication.

Much of the medications for acne available today consist of several products (systems for controlling acne), which includes an acne face wash, exfolliator or toner and some lotion. The combined use of these acne medications can have dramatic results in acne blemish control. Though they will likely not cure your acne, they will, when used properly, significantly lessen the number of acne breakouts.

These acne blemish control systems include:

Face wash or cleanser:
The face wash or cleanser is used to fight bacteria. Some are designed to combat bacteria, both on the surface and within the pores. At the same time many contain tiny granules to help exfoliate dead skin cells and impurities. The two most common ingredients of face washes is either benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid. Each of these ingredients approach acne control in different ways.

Benzoyl Peroxide:
Benzoyl peroxide used as an antiseptic to lessen the number of surface bacteria and skin yeasts. It is available as a gel, cream, lotion or face wash in varying concentrations.

Salicylic Acid:
Salicylic acid helps to slow down shedding skin cells inside the follicle, which in turn reducing clogging. It also helps breakdown, both blackheads and white heads. Salicylic acid is available in varying forms, like gels, lotions and medicated pads (Stridex) and in varying concentrations.

Exfolliator or toner:
The purpose of this gel or cream is to remove dead skin cells, unclog pores and remove excess oil. This one step is essential to acne blemish control. While not visible to the naked eye, clogging of the pores are a major contributor to acne breakouts. Again, depending on the manufacturer, either benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid or another medication for acne may be included in this step.

The final step is applying a lotion. These lotions are usually oil free and used to moisturerize, re-hydrate and reduce irritation of your skin. Some lotions may contain benzoyl peroxide to heal inflammation, which helps prevent future breakouts.

No matter which medication for acne you choose to use, following the acne treatment listed above will help to lessen your acne breakouts. Each step is an important step in active acne blemish control. The combined use of these medications can help to keep your skin clear and acne free. As with use of any medications, you should always consult with your doctor or dermatologists before starting any acne care treatment.

Copyright (c) 2006, by Paul E. Web This article may be freely distributed as long as the copyright, author's information and live link with anchored text is published with the article:

Thursday, September 16, 2010

A 10-Year Drive To Put The Brakes On Breast Cancer

Breast cancer is a highly treatable disease that now has a survival rate of 85 percent. Yet more than 212,000 women are still diagnosed with the condition each year.

Since early diagnosis is an important key to successful treatment, doctors say it's important that all women over the age of 18 do a Breast Self-Exam (BSE) every month, two or three days after their menstrual cycle. In addition, women between 20 and 39 should have a clinical breast exam at least every three years and women 40 and older should have a mammogram every year.

For the past 10 years, BMW of North America has worked with The Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation-the largest fund-raiser for breast cancer research in America-to help spread the message of early detection and to help ensure that breast cancer research continues. The groups' Ultimate Drive program has raised millions to help fund the efforts.

The initiative, fully underwritten by BMW, consists of two fleets of specifically badged BMWs making a cross-country trek, stopping in communities along the way to hold daylong events. People will be invited to test-drive the cars-at no cost to the participants-to raise money for breast cancer research, education and screening treatment programs.

The car company donates $1 directly to the Komen Foundation for each mile driven, along with whatever other proceeds are received from the program. Upon completion of every drive, each participant adds his or her own name to the Signature Vehicle-this year, a BMW 3-Series.

This year's goal is to raise over $1 million, bringing the program's 10-year total up to over $10 million. To help celebrate the initiative's 10th anniversary, the 240-stop cross-country trek has been expanded to include Alaska.

People can test-drive the cars to help fight breast cancer. They can also:

• Regularly conduct BSEs, have clinical exams and mammograms

• Stop smoking and stressing

• Get more exercise

• Cut or reduce their alcohol consumption

• Watch their diet. Try to eat plenty of olive oil, fruits, vegetables, grains, fresh fish and poultry.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

5000 Year-Old Medical Secret Unearthed!

When you get sick, you go to the doctor. And the doctor will, of course, prescribe medicines. You will go and buy medicines. You take them, and hopefully, you get well.

This is how the health profession goes on nowadays – a cycle of diagnosis and prescription.

If anyone were to give you herbs for medicine, you would probably say that that person was a quack.

But nowadays, studies are being conducted to see if there are really is any merit to what is called natural medicine.

Natural medicine is the use of natural methods, herbal medicines, and traditional practices to heal ailments. Every culture has a form of natural medicine. In ancient cultures, village medicine men served as the doctors of the community, passing on medical knowledge to the apprentices that followed them.

Many categories of the healing methods fall under natural medicine. Among these are traditional medicine, complementary medicine, and alternative medicine.

Usually, natural medicine refers to medical practices that were in place before the advent of modern medicine.

This includes herbal medicine, or phytotherapy, which is prevalent in Chinese, Ayurvedic(or Indian), and Greek medicine.

Upon the advent of modern medicine, many professionals discarded the use of herbs in favor of man-made medicine. The fact that these treatments are based on the healing properties of some herbs was forgotten.

For example, opium, digitalis, quinine, and aspirin all have their roots in traditional medicine.

Natural medicine can be considered as a lost art. This does not mean that it has lost efficacy over time. In some cases, natural therapy is actually better than modern medicine. This leads some doctors to seriously consider and study the possible uses of natural medicine

Before we continue, it is important to stress that not all the natural remedies are legitimate. It would help to only try those remedies which have been thoroughly studied and are relatively risk free.

Take herbal medicine for example. There are many well-documented and studied herbal remedies available. However, only those that deal with minor ailments such as cough, colds, fever, skin rashes, and its ilk are likely to be recommended by health professionals. These remedies are sometimes superior to synthetic medicine. This is because herbal medicines are less likely to cause negative side effects.

Currently there are numerous organizations that study the effects and advocacy of natural medicine – among which is herbal medicine. Some governments and health agencies openly advocate the use of natural methods since they are inexpensive and relatively risk-free.

As their studies compile, more herbs and treatments are added to the list of accepted medicines. However, many herbs and treatments have been proven to be bogus medicine. This represents a challenge for both the user and the agencies because they have to ascertain that the treatments they either use or advocate are legitimate.

There exist today many alternative medical treatments that fall under natural medicine. However, not all of them have been proven to be effective. You could mention homeopathy, aromatherapy, acupuncture, and other alternative medical treatments. It would pay to consult the experts as to the legitimacy of these treatments.

Natural medicine should also be thought of as an accompanying medicine. Right now, the current collective medical thought suggests that natural medicine be used only to supplement accepted modern medical practices. In that case of minor ailments your expert we actually advise you to take natural therapies instead.

The practice of modern medicine revolves around diagnosing an illness and prescribing treatments for such. Natural medicine is helpful because it suggests that treatment be not necessarily given only when sick. Natural medicine strives to make each patient practice good health habits. These habits include good diet, healthy living, and the regular natural treatment.

It is this same line of thought that leads our parents to tell us to eat our vegetables. Yes, a healthy lifestyle and will do no harm to our well-being. And this is the foundation of natural medicine – may it be massage, herbal medicine, aromatherapy or others.

It is funny but true that science, in its quest for excellence, is studying the knowledge of sages past. This, surprisingly, leads us back to the remedies nature offers. The possibilities of finding remedies to everyday illnesses in natural medicine are encouraging. So staying tuned to studying these remedies is worthwhile until we can verify that these therapies are truly helpful to our health and our society.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

177 Ways To Lose Weight And Burn Calories

It is possible to leave as much as necessary from a problem of weight, to consider as its cosmetic defect, to justify features of an organism, to hide behind jokes like: " the good person should be much ", from it adiposity will not cease to be the hardest disease tending all to greater distribution.

This illness can comprehend even not the people not predisposed to them - influence of a modern civilization of consumption on all and everyone is too great. Adiposity poisons and considerably shortens a life of many and many people. For effective struggle against excess weight, first of all, it is necessary to understand precisely, that it is illness which it is necessary to treat. It is necessary to recognize existence of a problem, to cease to hesitate and or on the contrary to defy the greater sizes.

Table of contents:

101 Everyday Tips For Losing 10 Pounds
177 Ways To Lose Weight And Burn Calories
Amazing Weight Loss & Health Tips
How To Burn Calories
NLP Diet
Interview With A Weight Loss Expert
Low Carb Diet Guide
Need To Lose 10 Pounds Quick
The G.i.south Beach Diet

Monday, September 13, 2010

60% Or Adults Are Obese! Permanent Solution?

More than 60 percent of adults in the United States are overweight or obese, and obese persons are more likely to be ill than those who are not. Obesity presents challenges to physicians and patients and also has a negative impact on health status. Some patients who are obese may delay medical care because of concerns about disparagement by physicians and health care staff, or fear of being weighed. Simple accommodations, such as providing large-sized examination gowns and armless chairs, as well as weighing patients in a private area, may make the medical setting more accessible and more comfortable for obese patients.

Children Can be Obese too!
Children can also be obese! And it is not just baby fat we are talking about here. Children who have migraines are more likely to be overweight than the general population, while overweight kids suffer more disabling migraines than their normal-weight peers, a new study shows.

Americans have become considerably more obese over the past 25 years. This increase is primarily the result of consuming more calories. The increase in food consumption is itself the result of technological innovations which made it possible for food to be mass prepared far from the point of consumption, and consumed with lower time costs of preparation and cleaning. Price changes are normally beneficial, but may not be if people have self-control problems.

Another government study published in October, 2002 indicates that thirty-one percent of the American public is obese. It further suggested that fifteen percent of young people between 6 and 19 are seriously overweight. Even ten percent of toddlers between 2 and 5 are seriously overweight. The study appeared in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Is there a Permanent Solution for Obesity?
But lucky for us all, advances in the medical world has made it possible for obese people to lose that weight and live a normal life! What is this method? It is called the gastric bypass surgery. Gastric bypass surgery has worked for thousands of people all over the world and has given lasting effect on weight loss! We urge you to find out more about the gastric bypass surgery method as a permanent way in losing tens of kilos and keeping them off forever!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

54 Ways To Lose Weight

54 Tips for Losing Weight

Try to add as many of these tips to your daily routine, and you will surely be well on the way to a slimmer, healthier you. We don’t get fat “overnight” – so you should expect it to take a certain amount of time to lose that weight again, but don’t give up! Persistence, Determination and Grit - They should be your watchwords. These tips work – if you stick to your plan!

1. Eliminate one tablespoon of fat a day and you will lose 10 pounds in a year.
2. Avoid strange fad diets—if you can’t eat that way for the rest of your life, don’t waste your time or your health.
3. Limit alcohol consumption - each serving contains 100 to 150 calories.
4. Eat fruit at least twice a day.
5. Keep a food diary about your food choices, indicating how hungry you are each time you eat. Pay particular attention to your level of hunger when you snack.
6. Perform aerobic exercise a minimum of 30 minutes three times a week. Log this on your food diary. Aerobic means any exercise that increases your breathing and heart rate. Walking is fine! Do only what you can to begin with. If you have other health problems, consult your doctor before embarking on any strong physical exercise.
7. Gradually increase the length and frequency of your workouts.
8. Weigh yourself no more than twice a week. And do it in the morning after going to the bathroom – it’s the most accurate reading.
9. Give yourself a non-food reward for every 5 pounds lost.
10. Slow down your eating speed—make meals last at least 20 minutes. Try eating with the other hand or taking a sip of water between bites.
11. Use smaller plates.
12. Bring your lunch to work at least three times a week.
13. Start to strength train twice a week as your fitness improves. Building muscle increases your metabolism and forces your body to use fat, not muscle, when you’re cutting back on calories. Cut down on carbohydrates and stick to lean white meat and fish, and you will notice vast improvements here.
14. Stop eating while watching television.
15. Have someone else put away leftovers.
16. Buy a good low-fat, low-calorie cookbook or magazine subscription.
17. Try two new reduced-calorie recipes a month.
18. IMPORTANT - Eat breakfast daily. This suppresses the appetite for most of the day and provides fuel for the brain while at work or looking after the kids! You will feel better and have more energy all day if you eat a low fat cereal in the morning.
19. Don’t read while eating.
20. Have a sweet treat once a week.
21. Keep healthful snacks at home and at work.
22. Limit your cheese consumption to reduce fat and saturated fat—use cheese and lunchmeat with less than 5 grams of fat per ounce.
23. Add calorie counting or fat-gram counting to your food diary for a few weeks if your weight loss is slowing down. Maybe you’re missing something.
24. Substitute herbs and spices for salt.
25. Shop for food when you are not hungry, and use a shopping list.
26. Replace ground beef with ground turkey or soy crumbles in dishes such as spaghetti. Don’t skip the protein in your meals; find a leaner substitute.
27. Eat three vegetables a day.
28. Always eat sitting down.
29. Request that your family and friends respect your efforts to lose weight and get fit—beware of loving “sabotage.”
30. Take a walk when you’re stressed or angry.
31. Eat two dairy products a day—be aware of your calcium intake. Select low-fat or nonfat dairy products to reduce fat calories.
32. Order dressings and sauces on the side and apply them with a fork.
33. Increase your fiber intake—chose whole-grain breads, cereals and pasta products, legumes, and raw fruits and vegetables.
34. Add slow-down food to your meals—crunchy vegetables, a large glass of water, hot soup or beverages, or fresh fruit to fill you up.
35. Cook with chicken broth, nonstick cooking spray, wine or water.
36. Drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day.
37. Shrink portion sizes of meats and starches, and pile on the vegetables.
38. Ask how the food is prepared when ordering in a restaurant.
39. Choose low-fat frozen yogurt or frozen juice bars instead of ice cream. Be careful of the portion size - these foods still have calories!
40. Select clear broth- or tomato-based soups over white soups.
41. Keep the junk foods out of sight in your home and workplace.
42. Take walking shoes or a jump rope with you when you travel to keep up with your exercise.
43. If you’re getting off track, try to pre-plan your food intake for the next three days by writing it down.
44. Buy frozen diet dinners with 10 grams of fat or less and 800 milligrams of sodium or less.
45. Avoid batter coating or breading.
46. Use two egg whites in baking instead of one whole egg.
47. Stretch during television commercials—arm circles, leg lifts, head tilts, etc.
48. Eliminate the butter on your rolls or popcorn.
49. Learn to say “no” gracefully when a friend or relative offers you a second helping.
50. Choose pizza with vegetable toppings rather than high-fat meats, such as sausage and pepperoni.
51. Ask for less cheese. Have you ever tried tomato pie?
52. Choose cooking techniques that keep fat to a minimum, such as baking, grilling, broiling, roasting or steaming.
53. Add more low-fat soy products to your diet for the soy protein and health benefits.
54. Forgive yourself when you slip—and make the next food choice a healthy one.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

50th Wedding anniversary

Jean looked through the window at the birds flying calmly in the sky and some dogs running on the beach. It was a nice day and she felt calm and content to be there, memories came back from her younger days: when she knew she loved John, the the weather conditions had been equal and she, as a modest girl with attractive face and long and bright hair, had been happy to pulled towards her, a young bank manager. Her skin like silk had attracted as he saw her on the beach, and regardless of timidity his he had bought a box of chocolates – he said they were soft to the touch as she seemed to be.
Their ardent fate flourished and Jean murmured as she bore in mind vacations and picnics, swimming in the same sea she was looking at now and canoodling in the back row of the cinema. John never forgot wedding anniversary and was always purchasing her nice flowers and chocolates and leaving some flowers on the bed – even after 50 years of being together.
Her cheeks reddened as she remembered some ardent moments – caressing each other during an Opera performance; fantastic dinners in Turkey and comfortable days in hotel bedrooms when on holiday, scarcely leaving their room, so crazy they were about their passion.
A hand gently met her hand and she looked up: here he was, her John, now 72 but still with a twinkle in his eye. He knew her so well that he straight away knew what she was thinking.
“I know fun wasn’t it, old lady? You are still the love of my life!”
Ah a romantic thought now she identified they were too old and John couldn’t coped with his impotence. Erectile dysfunction – what a medical condition identify something so unhappy.
On the other hand John had a surprise; he had been evoking too, and had discovered a website for generic Viagra and generic cialis on the Internet. He had placed an order some generic Viagra tablets, which claimed they would be able to help him to obtain his former sexual capability. Right now, he had a pack of generic Viagra in his pocket and a plan in his mind. A romantic walk near the sea, delicious banquet a relaxing walk and then home... where he intended to lie their passion again.

Friday, September 10, 2010

40 Day running program for 40 - 50 year olds.

Everyday is designed for a 30 minute workout routine. So you will need a stopwatch or a watch. Follow this program just as it is planned out, make plans on working out 4 to 6 times per week, if you do not make at least 4 times in any given week you need to go back redo that week. But whatever you do, do not give up.

#1) walk for 30 minutes

#1) walk for 7 minutes, then jog for 2 minutes
#2) walk for 8 minuets, then jog for 2 minute
#3) walk for 7 minutes, then jog for 1 minute
#4) walk for four minutes cool down

#1) walk 7 for minutes, then jog for four minutes
#2) walk 7 for minutes, then jog for three minutes
#3) walk 6 for minutes, then SPRINT (or run hard)for 10 seconds
#4) walk for minutes, then SPRINT (or run hard) for 5 seconds

#1) walk for 6 minutes, then jog for 6 minutes
#2) walk for 7 minutes, then jog for 3 minutes
#3) walk for 3 minutes, then jog for 3 minutes
#4) walk for 4 minutes cool down

#1) walk for 3 minutes, jog for eight minutes
#2) walk for 3 minutes, then SPRINT (or run hard) for 15 seconds
#3) walk for 3 minutes, then SPRINT (or run hard) for 10 seconds
#4) walk for 3 minutes, then SPRINT (or run hard) for 8 seconds
#5) walk for 5 minutes, then SPRINT (or run hard) for 8 seconds
#6) walk for 5 minutes, then jog for 1 minute
#7) walk for 2 minutes cool down

#1) walk for 5 minutes, then jog for 10 minutes
#2) walk for 5 minutes, then jog for 7 minutes
#3) walk for 3 minutes cool down

#1) walk for 4 minutes, then jog for 15 minutes
#2) walk for 3 minutes, then jog for 5 minutes
#3) walk for 3 minutes cool down

#1) walk for 3 minutes, then jog for 27 minutes

Dale Dupree
copyright 2007

Thursday, September 9, 2010

30-Minute Weight Loss Exercise Proves Most Effective


If you're “averagely overweight,” that is, not doctor-diagnosed with extreme obesity, or if you just want to feel better by losing or shedding a few pounds, there’s good news for you – from ACCREDITED, reliable, trusted experts who also care about your well-being. [See: ACE; ACSM; AHA; or AHA.]

Truth: Ten minutes of daily exercise is admirable because it’s far better than zero minutes of productive energy expenditure. However, exercise physiology and weight loss science point to 30 minutes per day, at least three times per week, as part of your best body fat improvement scenario.

Why Does 30 Minutes Prove So Beneficial, And What’s The Other Part of An Effective Weight Loss Scenario?

Your body has only three possible energy systems. Two of them are oxygen-INDEPENDENT. Yet, in order to metabolize fat, your body demands that oxygen be present. Long-story-short: brief, especially “quick” exercise bouts look for quick energy sources. These reside in blood and in muscle. It takes more than a few minutes to significantly tap into your fat stores, and especially, to burn enough of it for a long enough time to lose some substantial body weight.

This is almost the exact opposite of muscle tissue, where you can see and feel virtually immediate results. Burning fat requires patience. You simply have to allow yourself TIME to let exercise effects occur.

Reach Your Aerobic Threshold

Generally, exercise begins with a warm-up phase, at least 1-3 minutes. Provided your intensity remains within your target heart rate training zone, (about 120 heart beats per minute – an estimated average for most non health-impaired adults) you’ll spend the next 7-10 minutes reaching your aerobic threshold. Staying near-to, but right below the point where your muscles burn (from a too-highly-intense performance causing lactic acid build-up) will bring you to a virtually perfect “fat-burn.” Yet, THIS very special meeting only occurs at medium-to-low intensities, which takes longer periods of time.

Lipids (a simplified word for “non-water-soluble-fats” within your system) have to move from the outside of a cell, through the cytosol, mix with pyruvate, plus oxygen… then proceed to your “furnace” (mitochondria). This is where you break fat down into your “rewarding and much-wanted” by-products – energy (the work you’ve achieved); H2O (sweat); and carbon dioxide (a lot of continuous “exhaling”).

So, if you quit at the 10-minute mark, you deny yourself approximately an additional 10 calories or more per minute of weight lost, primarily from fat stores. Stopping this process at 10 minutes is much like going all the way to the door of your favorite party but never stepping inside…for the “real” action.

Reasons Why You Should Work Out More Than Ten Minutes

With all of that said, there’s an even more monumentally powerful yet scientific reason why you should work out for more than only ten minutes. In fact, at least 30-minute exercise sessions prove most beneficial for effective weight loss and improved endurance. You’ll get three fundamental benefits from this:

First, you preserve your LEAN body mass (which you need because it burns fat far better than fat can burn itself).

Second, you get to expend MAXIMUM calories (the true key to losing weight – maximizing caloric expenditure, which is a time-consuming venture).

Third, your extended physical activity makes you change the way your body USES food internally or metabolically (for example, getting three-fold increase in calories expended, compared to person remaining sedentary.).

To Summarize, Experts Now Agree

The bottom line is that essentially all experts in diabetic science, obesity control, dietetics & nutrition, exercise science & personal training, and exercise physiology agree that extended, low-to-moderate-intensity physical activity is yet the most significant and flexible factor in energy expenditure for losing weight.

Mix that with practicality, reasonability, and utilize the following tip: Base your safe, effective weight loss goals around the fundamental principle that you need to alter your energy balance in the NEGATIVE direction by expending about 500 calories per day from smartly manipulating both EXERCISE AND DIET. You’ll find that it's barely even possible to accomplish this feat by altering food alone. With exercise, however, you can obtain your weight loss objectives much more comfortably and conveniently, plus safely, too, for results that are long-lasting and health enhancing.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

30 Seconds to Easy Self Hypnosis.

There are many ways in which to induce a tranquil, relaxed state of mind, in which the body is still, and the conscious mind is simply placed aside for a while as the subconscious mind assumes a more dominant role, and allows the therapeutic cognitive processes which are innate in all of us to become active.

This state of mind, known as the hypnotic state is very simply created by;
- Focusing one’s attention.
- Relaxing the body.
- Allowing unnecessary thoughts to enter, then exit, without any rationalisation.

This process can be easily accomplished by the technique that follows. It is known as the “Eye Roll Technique’, and is a very old but powerful way of entering a safe therapeutic hypnotic trance. When in this relaxed state of mind, it is possible to offer oneself any positive suggestions or affirmations in order to bring about the changes which you desire. Examples of positive statements and affirmations are given further on.

If possible, find yourself a quiet place and either sit down or lie down comfortably.
Roll up your eyes, just as if you were trying to look at your eyebrows.
Allow your eyelids to slowly close, and as you do so, take in a deep breath and hold it.

As you slowly exhale, allow your upturned eyes to return to their normal position.

As you finish exhaling, enjoy that gentle, floating sensation that you will experience.
At the same time, imagine your right hand to be very light, like it has a childs helium balloon tied to it making it rise gently. You may be surprised at the ease by which your hand and arm seem to float up by themselves.
This floating hand signal is a signal from your subconscious mind that you are entering a state of deep relaxation.

As you remain in this deeply relaxed, hypnotic state of mind, offer yourself any positive, therapeutic suggestions which you feel will help to bring about the changes you really want or need.
Remain in this state for 10-20 minutes, that’s really all that’s needed.

You can repeat the process as many times a day as you like.

Roll up your eyes behind your closed eyelids.
Very slowly, allow your eyelids to open, and the eyes to focus.
Make a tight fist with your right hand, and as you do, allow this light floating hand to drift down into a comfortable position. As it comes to rest, release the tight fist and gently stretch those fingers.……FINISHED !!!!

If necessary, the exit from the trance state can be accomplished any time by going through the steps listed above.

It may take you a little time to perfect the technique, especially if you are the ‘on the go all the time’ sort of person. Relaxation comes easier to some people than to others, so always bear this in mind.

Remember, if you want to make positive changes in your life, this relatively short use of your time can pay great dividends in the end. The beauty of it is that once you have practiced and mastered the technique, you will be able to enter the relaxed state much more easily and deeply.

Another point to remember is that everyone is capable of entering into a hypnotic state.
But just as we are all different, so is the ease with which we enter into a hypnotic trance.
Some will succeed on their first or second attempt, where as others may need many more attempts. It took me a week and a half, and about 15 attempts before I achieved a hypnotic state. The motto is—PERSERVERE. It may take time, but the rewards are well worth the effort.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

30 Days Trial

It has been long time that I didn’t do any exercise. I feel that my stamina is going down and I get tired easily. This is not a good sign. I had tried to do some Tai Chi exercise after work. However it seems like I cannot persist. I used to exercise regularly. I jogged 3 days a week for at least 5 km. On top of that I had Tai Chi classes twice a week. But now because of the busy working life and my favourite Korean series on TV at night, I hardly exercise.

Recently I came accross a very interesting idea which is called 30 Days to Success. How it works is that lets say you want to start a new habit for example jogging for at least 3 times a week. You think of this as a temporary activities. You do it for a 30-day trial. After 30 days you will not need to continue this anymore.

I think it is a nature of human that whenever we need to change our daily habits, it seems very hard for us to make a start. We will feel overwhelmed when we think that we need to continue to do this for the rest of our life. We get fed up and never make a start. But if we think of this as only a temporary change, then it will become not that difficult for us. Anyway after 30 days we will be able to go back to our normal daily life.

So what happen is after 30-days of trial, it will become a habit to us and it will be easier for us to continue to maintain the habit. This is a powerful way to improve our life.

I am going to try this out with a 15 minutes of simple Tai Chi exercises everyday for a 30-day trial.

Monday, September 6, 2010

29 Off-The-Wall Reasons To Get In Better Shape

Copyright 2006 Brad Howard

Establishing clear expectations while working out often can be the difference between success and failure. Too many people try to do too much and get frustrated. Instead of “lasering” in on a few great strategies, they try to do as many things as possible. As they say, “Jack of all trades, master of none” applies here.

To help renew your spirits of why proper diet and exercise is important for the New Year, I’ve compiled a somewhat comical list. See how many apply to you:

• Because it costs you (or your loved ones) over 5 million pennies in future health care if you aren’t

• Because feeling better tomorrow starts today

• Because torture is a bad persuasion technique

• Because studies show that fit people make more money

• Because if you don’t, you suck

• Because movie stars do it

• Because performers do it

• Because everyone that is cool in your life, does it

• Because you CAN commit 1.5 hrs/wk out of 176

• Because avoiding a wheelchair is a good thing

• Because hugs are better when you can actually wrap your arms around someone

• Because your kids really don’t want to put you in a rest home

• Because no matter what you keep telling yourself, thick is not sexy

• Because feeling grandpa’s muscles at Thanksgiving can be a yearly ritual

• Because cottage cheese is for fruit

• Because squeezing into a size 6 means you’re not a size 6

• Because love making is much more fun without the extra rolls

• Because being able to see your toes……hmmmm

• Because bigger clothes cost more money

• Because shopping for smaller clothes raises spirits

• Because hitting the State Fair and observing everyone shouldn’t be the only thing that puts a smile on your face

• Because having the woman in your life open a stuck jar of pickles for you is embarrassing

• Because no matter what anyone says, women are always in competition with each other. You do want to win, right?

• Because you had to ask your 10 year old son to take out the trash…..after all you couldn’t lift it

• Because beer makes everyone else look better while making you look worse

• Because weight training makes you look better while making everyone else look worse (see competition in women)

• Because yelling at the gym is a lot better than yelling at work (unless you are a cheerleader)

• Because “Shut your mouth or I’ll kick your ___,” now actually has meaning

• Because being told you look 40 when you are actually 60 does something strange to self confidence

Again, make sure to renew your sense of self worth this holiday season and strive to become a healthier you. Great information is always key but watch out for the dreaded “information overload.” Get equipped and make ’06 the best year of your life.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

26 percent of Americans use the Web to search p. drugs

While 26 percent of Americans has used a Search Engine for finding drug information online, still only a few are venturing into the online prescription drug marketplace.

The prescription drug market is enormous and includes millions of Americans who go online to get information about the medicines they consume.

According to the new Pew Internet & American Life Project "Prescription Drugs Online" report, 64% of American households contain a regular user of prescription drugs, and one in four Americans (26%) has used the Internet to look for information about prescription drugs.

However, just 4% of Americans have purchased prescription drugs online, because, simply, most Americans do not fully trust the online prescription drug marketplace.

While 62% of Americans think purchasing prescription drugs online is less safe than purchasing them at a local pharmacy, only 20% think online purchases are as safe as local purchases. The remaining 18% responded that they did not know or that it depends on the situation.

In fact, even though one in five said online drug purchases are safe, only a fraction have ever bought prescription drugs online. The survey found a mere 4% of Americans have ever actually purchased prescription drugs on the Internet. To put that in actual numbers, of the 2,200 American adults surveyed just 93 people said they had purchased prescription drugs online.

When it comes to why people purchase drugs online, even though the sample size was small, Americans who have ordered prescription drugs online cited convenience and cost savings as the main reasons why they decided to take the leap. Privacy was the least likely factor of the choices offered in the survey.

When asked about the last time they purchased prescription drugs online, the majority of Rx purchasers said they visited a site that was based in the United States, and only a few visited a site based in another country. In addition:

-- Three-quarters of Rx purchasers said the last time they purchased prescription drugs online, they bought a drug for a chronic medical condition such as high blood pressure or arthritis.

-- One-quarter said their last purchase at an online pharmacy was to aid weight loss or sexual performance.

-- Most were satisfied with their last contact with an online pharmacy and plan to order prescription drugs online in the future.

All in all, the survey was upbeat about the future of the online drug market, stating that "Ignorance and mistrust of the online prescription drug market may be dispelled by further research and good experiences," and indicating that many Americans may soon change their minds about the safety of online prescription drug purchases.

Drawing an analogy to the growth in another large online category, the report stated: "[Prescription drug purchasers] who research a product online often become customers.

Convenience is the number one reason why banking became the fastest-growing activity between 2000 and 2002 — and it is the main reason why current Rx purchasers made the switch from offline to online ordering."