February 28, 2008

Pills that Kills Addiction

There is an amino acid supplement called N-acetyl cysteine that works by easing compulsive gambling and might cure other addictive behaviors. The pill works by normalizing the levels of glutamate, which is a chemical that could be out of balance in specific areas of an addict’s brain. Sixteen out of 27 gamblers say that they had very few urges after taking doses of NAC for 8 week at the University Of Minnesota School Of Medicine. Almost everybody that continued to take the compound stopped gambling and most people that stopped taking it went back to their gambling habit.

How to Get Over the Weight Loss Plateau

After a while of exercising and dieting the body often hits a plateau where it seems like the pounds have stopped dropping. A plateau happens when your body wants to hang on to your current weight for fear of future starvation. It is possible to get over the plateau by increasing the intensity of your workout. More intense workouts signal your body to release extra fat stores for energy.

It is good to try a new exercise or activity so that you work new muscles that you haven’t worked yet. It is also a good idea to check your calorie intake to make sure that you are not eating too many calories. With these couple of simple tricks it is possible to get over the plateau more quickly and easily.

February 23, 2008

Fruit Peels Help Prevent Cancer

When you peel a fruit it is best not to throw out the peel. It is found that a compound in lemon, orange, and grapefruit peels can help decrease the risk of cancer. Scientists have found a compound in tangerine peels called salvestrol Q40 that kills an enzyme that supports the growth of cancer cells.

Smaller Fruits Better Than Bigger Fruits

It is found that smaller fruits are more nutritious than bigger fruits. As fruits grow larger, their amount of vitamins, minerals, and other compounds decrease. The amount of taste and aroma decreases too. The loss happens in both organic and non-organically grown fruits.

The Good and Bad of Fish

Eating fish can be both good and bad for you. Fish contains omega-3, which is good for your health but it also contains mercury. Mercury in the bloodstream can increase the risk of heart disease and impair memory. It is advised to only eat up to 12 ounces per week of fish and other foods that have mercury in them.

February 22, 2008

Natural Remedies for Dry Eye Syndrome

Dry Eye Syndrome is one of the most common reasons that people to go an ophthalmologist. The condition causes stinging red eyes, blurred vision, and sensitivity to light. There are natural treatments available that can give long-term help.

A person can help symptoms of dry eye syndrome by eating more Omega-3s. Omega-3s are fatty acids that would reduce inflammation. It is advised to eat about 2,350 mg of this weekly.

Make sure you get enough sleep. During sleep a thin layer of mucous, oil, and water coats the eye and provides moisture and protection. Getting enough sleep gives the eye enough time to replenish the film.

An ophthalmologist can insert punctual plugs. The plugs are sesame seed-sized and are placed into the tear drainage ducts to keep tears from escaping and retain moisture.

February 21, 2008

New Options For Diabetic Patients

Two different companies named Bentley and Nastech are testing nasal insulin sprays for people who have diabetes. It is found that insulin is absorbed quicker and more efficiently when it is inhaled than when it is injected. There are also chemists that are developing a breath test to monitor sugar levels for diabetics.

February 20, 2008

Hot Chile Peppers Used as Pain Killers

A new study finds that capsaicin, which is a compound found in red Chile peppers that makes them taste hot, is an effective pain reliever. It is found that capsaicin neutralizes a pain neurotransmitter in nerve fibers.

Cutting Carbs Helps Eye Sight

It is found that a person could prevent their eye sight from getting worse as they get older by cutting out refined carbohydrates, such as white bread, white rice, and other food with a high glycemic index. It is best to also cut back on soda and sugary foods and eat more whole wheat versions of pasta, bread, and rice

February 19, 2008

Hypnosis Used for Post-Surgery Pain

It is found that 15 minutes of hypnotherapy can reduce the amount of anesthesia that is needed during surgery and also reduces the amount of pain, nausea, and fatigue that comes after the surgery. Doctors at New York City’s Mount Sinai School of Medicine gave 200 women preoperative hypnosis and found that they were out of surgery 11 minutes earlier than average.

February 18, 2008

New Tear Free Onions

There are genetic engineers that have been able to make tear free onions. Chopping onions make people cry because an onion releases an enzyme that makes a gas that contains sulfur, which irritates the eyes. Scientists have found out how to turn off the gene that makes the enzyme to come up with onions that are the same in every way without causing stinging or teary eyes. They won’t be sold in grocery stores for at least another 10 years because it would take a while to mass-engineer them.

New Device Helps Stroke Victims

There are some stroke victims and people that have neurological impairments that have to wear a leg brace due to having a condition where they can’t step heel first and have trouble walking without stumbling. A new system called the NESS L300 uses a sensor in the shoe to tell a wireless device, which is worn below the knee, when the heel is on or off the ground. The device would send electrical pulses to the leg nerve that controls lifting the foot so that some people could walk more naturally.

February 17, 2008

Test That Predicts Diabetes Years Before It Happens

A test for three proteins can predict if a woman will develop diabetes years before standard screenings find a problem. The three proteins are signs of inflammation that are linked to insulin resistance. Finding out whether a person will get diabetes early could warn the person and influence them to make lifestyle changes before it’s too late.

New Medical Treatment for Heart Attacks

It is assumed that if a person is not revived 5 minutes after having cardiac arrest that they are basically dead. Researchers have found that if the body of a person that had cardiac arrest is cooled by several degrees after the heart has stopped beating, the person could survive for up to 15 minutes instead of 5 minutes. Doctors are starting to use cooling blankets that circulate icy water to reduce brain damage and revive people that didn’t have a heart beat for up to 15 minutes. Researchers are trying to develop icy injectable slurry that lowers body temperature within seconds and emergency workers can use it on the spot.

The Mid-Life Crisis

Researchers have found that most people between their 40’s and 50’s feel depressed and unsatisfied with their lives. Some people go into full-blown depression. This is called having a mid-life crisis. It effects every population of people around the world, whether a person is rich, poor, has children, has no children, married, divorced, widowed, or single. The crisis is temporary and starts to leave in the mid 50’s. Knowing that the phase is normal can help people move through it.

February 15, 2008

The New Fish Diet Fights Alzheimer’s Disease

It is found that fatty fish, such as salmon, herring, and mackerel, can cut your risk of Alzheimer’s disease in half if you eat three servings per week. The benefits that come from the fish come from omega-3 fatty acids, which makes up 20 percent of the brain’s mass. They are also important for the development of new brain cells and important for learning and memory.

The fish diet also provides choline, which is the chemical basis for a neurotransmitter that speeds electrical pulses between neurons. Drugs that raise the levels of the neurotransmitter can improve memory. It is recommended that a regular diet contains 3 4-ounce servings of fatty fish per week.

The Best Reasons to Buy Frozen Produce

Buying frozen fruits and vegetables can save time and money. Frozen produce is healthier than fresh pick produce because as soon as produce is picked it starts to lose nutrients but freezing them slows down that loss. Also, the levels of disease-fighting antioxidants, called anthocyanins, and some minerals increase in amount after freezing.

February 14, 2008

Vitamin C Helps Prevent Arthritis

Scientists have recently found that the antioxidant found in produce, such as bell peppers, kiwi fruit, tomatoes, and oranges, can help your knees against arthritis. People eating a lot of Vitamin C are less likely to have bone degeneration that would cause knee osteoarthritis.

February 13, 2008

Study Says Some People Having AIDS Aren’t Infectious

It is found in a recent study that AIDS patients that have been treated with the latest antiretroviral drugs can no longer infect other people through sexual contact. The drugs work so well that even though the patients aren’t cured, they make it able that only a small amount of the virus is circulating through the body. Researchers say that this fact prevents a HIV-positive person from transferring the virus through sexual intercourse.

The researchers also say that AIDS patients who took the drugs for at least six months can have unprotected sex with HIV-negative people without infecting them. Many activists and doctors don’t agree with doing this because it might have HIV-positive people having sex without informing their partners about their disease. If a HIV-positive patient missed a dose of their medicine, then they could be at risk of infecting their partners.

February 12, 2008

Doctors Using Nintendo Wii Games for Physical Therapy

The Nintendo Wii is widely becoming a form of physical therapy. Stretching and lifting exercises that help sick and injured people can get painful, repetitive, and boring. Nintendo Wii games require body movements that are similar to traditional therapy exercises. Most patients are so into the games that they don’t realize that they are doing physical work.

The most popular Wii games in physical therapy are the sports games, such as baseball, bowling, boxing, golf, and tennis. Users that play the games would use a wireless controller that would direct the movements of the animated athletes and characters on the screen.

Anti-Wrinkle Drugs Could Cause Deaths

The anti-wrinkle drug Botox and a competitor have been linked to dangerous botulism symptoms that have caused deaths for a few children that were given the drugs for muscle spasms. Botox, a wrinkle-specific version called Botox Cosmetic, and Myobloc are all drugs that use botulism toxin to block nerve impulses and cause the nerves to relax. In some cases, the toxin can spread from the area of injection to other parts of the body and paralyze or weaken the muscles used for breathing and swallowing, which can be fatal and cause death.

Botox is known for reducing the appearance of wrinkles by paralyzing facial muscles. Botulism toxin is mostly used for muscle spasm conditions, such as cervical dystonia or severe neck spasms. A person should get help immediately if they suffer from symptoms of botulism. The symptoms would include difficulty swallowing or breathing, slurred speech, muscle weakness, or difficulty holding up the head.

The FDA is investigating the deaths of children that were being treated for spasticity in their legs due to cerebral palsy. The FDA is also probing reports of people that used the drugs and had gotten sick, this includes a woman who was given Botox for forehead wrinkles and had to be hospitalized. The Public Citizen advocacy group has cited 180 reports of U.S. patients that suffered fluid in their lungs, difficulty swallowing, or pneumonia. This number includes 16 deaths.

February 11, 2008

Acupuncture Could Increase Pregnancy Chances

A recent study says that acupuncture could possible improve the chances of conceiving if the treatment is done right before or after embryos are in the womb. Acupuncture treatments involve placing thin needles at certain points on the body to try to control pain and reduce stress levels. Using this treatment as a fertility treatment, it is assumed that it would increase the blood flow to the uterus, relax the cervix, and inhibit the “fight or flight” stress hormones that can make it harder for an embryo to implant itself. The study found that the odds of conceiving went up 65 percent for the women who were given the treatment.

Removing Blood Clots Helps Heart Attack Recovery

A new research shows that more people survive major heart attacks and have fewer problems if doctors use a mini-vacuum to clear out an artery blockage instead of pushing it aside to help blood flow. Suctioning out a clot before implanting a stent could lead to wider use in heart attack treatment.

Most heart attacks occur when a buildup of plaque in a coronary artery ruptures and a blood clot forms that blocks the flow of oxygen-rich blood to the heart. The most preferred treatment is an angioplasty to reopen the artery.

Doctors would use a procedure that would snake a tube through a blood vessel to the blocked artery and use a small balloon to compress the blockage and restore blood flow. A small metal-mesh stent is placed to keep the artery open. A bad thing about the procedure is that sometimes pieces of the clot or plaque breaks off and plugs the tinier vessels to restrict the blood flow to the heart.

February 9, 2008

Music Therapy for Good Health

Research has shown that good music can be good for your health. It can dull pain, release stress, lower blood pressure, better your mood, and cure insomnia. There are certified music therapists that treat heart disease, asthma, Alzheimer’s, and other diseases using music therapy.

Researchers found that listening to music for an hour each day can decrease 20 percent of your pain. It can also decrease the need for pain medication before and after surgery. This music therapy works by stimulating the release of pain-masking endorphins in the brain.

Brain music therapy can help insomnia. People suffering from insomnia who listened to classical piano created in response to their own brain waves improved their sleep quality in only 4 weeks. This type of therapy boots the levels of melatonin, which is a brain chemical that is linked to sleeping.

Music therapy can also help depression. Music can decrease depression symptoms by up to 25 percent. Researchers found that listening to New Age music decreased the levels of the stress hormone cortisol and classical music lowered blood pressure. Another study found that listening to your favorite workout songs during exercise can fight off fatigue so that you can workout longer and won’t feel so drained afterwards.

February 7, 2008

Cure Sinus Infections Without Antibiotics

There are natural remedies that can help clear up sinus infections. The remedies can ease painful congestion, decrease healing time, and prevent new infections from happening.

Sinuses can be helped by vaporization. The steam and hot water can help sinuses to drain and relieve pressure. You can do this by boiling a pot of water on the stove, removing the pot from the stove, and then inhaling the vapor for 10 minutes while covering your head with a towel. It can also help to put hot, wet compresses on the face several times a day, irrigate nasal passages with warm salt water twice a day, and drink lots of fluid to keep the body hydrated and to help break up mucus.

Avoiding dairy foods can help sinus problems. Cow’s milk and other dairy products can thicken nasal secretions and block sinuses.

Eating more garlic can help sinuses. Garlic has antibacterial properties that could help fight off infections. A person could also try using astragalus. Astragalus is an herb that boosts the immune system and could help prevent infections.

Acupuncture could help sinuses. It is an effective treatment for an acute sinus infection and could ease congestion and pain very fast.

The Healing Powers of Prayer

There is evidence that praying can help significantly when you need healing. There are studies that have shown that spiritual and religious prayer can lower blood pressure, strengthen immunity, help depression, and create longer life spans. A study that was done on intercessory prayer, which is praying for other people, showed that heart patients who were prayed for daily by other people for four weeks but didn’t know it had 11 percent less complications than normal.

Praying regularly could help and decrease the chances of unhealthy behaviors, such as alcohol and drug abuse. An active spiritual life of also going to church services along with praying could help people deal with stress. Also, people who attend church services regularly could have better health by having a more social life and a larger social network.

February 5, 2008

Beware of Chemicals in Baby Items

A recent study suggests that people should be aware of baby shampoos, lotions, and powders that expose infants to chemicals. The Chemicals, called phthalates, are already in many of the common items we use, such as cosmetics, toys, vinyl flooring, and medical supplies. The chemicals are also used to stabilize fragrances and to make plastic flexible.

The harmful chemicals were found in elevated levels in the urine of babies who had been shampooed, powdered, or lotioned with baby products. The federal government doesn’t limit the use of the chemicals but California and some countries have restricted their use. Studies say that the phthalates chemicals could cause reproductive birth defects and might cause reproductive problems in boys and problems in the early puberty years of girls.

Doctors say that it is not necessary to use special lotions, powders, or shampoos on babies and you can use water by itself or a small amount of regular shampoo to clean the air of infants. Parents can look for products that are labeled phthalate-free or check the labels of products to see if they contain phthalates, DEP, and DEHP. Sometimes, the names of the chemicals aren’t found on the product labels, because it is not required of companies to do so.

Relaxation Can Lower Cholesterol

Staying calm during stressful situations can help to maintain or to raise the levels of HDL cholesterol, which is the good cholesterol. Researchers from Oregon State University surveyed 716 men and found that the men who stayed calm during stressful situations had higher levels of HDL than men who became angry or wanted to be along during stressful situations. The men that got angry also had higher levels of triglycerides, which are blood fats. The same effects happen in women.

A person that has anger control problems can learn self-control techniques, such as taking time to slowly and deeply breathe when feeling angry.