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In recent years, there has been a push from organizations like the March of Dimes and the Centers for Disease Control urging women of childbearing age to make sure they get the recommended daily allowance (RDA) of folic acid, also known as vitamin B9. Women who are actively trying to get pregnant may want to consider a separate folic acid supplement. Folic acid remains important throughout pregnancy and prenatal vitamins will provide a good supply. Studies have shown that ade...

Prevent Birth Defects With B Vitamin Folic Acid

Prevent Birth Defects With B Vitamin Folic AcidIn recent years, there has been a push from organizations like the March of Dimes and the Centers for Disease Control urging women of childbearing age to make sure they get the recommended daily allowance (RDA) of folic acid, also known as vitamin B9. Women who are actively trying to get pregnant may want to consider a separate folic acid supplement. Folic acid remains important throughout pregnancy and prenatal vitamins will provide a good supply. Studies have shown that adequate levels of folic acid in pregnant women can drastically lower the chances of their babies developing neural tube defects. The neural tube is the part of an embryo and fetus that is the core of the central nervous system, it later develops into the brain and spinal cord.Neural tube defects develop early in the first trimester, during the first weeks of pregnancy. Many women do not yet know they are pregnant during this time, so waiting until they find out they are pregnant to begin taking folic acid will not have the desired effect. One of the more commonly occurring neural tube defects is spina bifida, when babies are born with part of their spinal cord exposed because the neural tube did not close correctly in development.Folic acid is one of the B complex of vitamins. It is present in many foods that are part of an otherwise healthy diet, including green vegetables like spinach, broccoli, and asparagus. It is also found in legumes like black beans and lentils. Some foods, like breakfast cereals and some breads and pastas, are fortified with vitamins, usually including folic acid. In addition to including foods high in folic acid in your diet, it is a good idea to take a vitamin supplement that is either folic acid alone, or a multivitamin that contains folic acid. Generally, advice to take large amounts of vitamins in diet or supplement form has to be tempered against the fact that some vitamins in high levels can be toxic. This is not the case, however, with folic acid. Folic acid can be taken in large amounts and not cause toxicity.Another plus to folic acid is that it is good for you, as well as your developing baby. Both men and women benefit from folic acid, which helps your body produce healthy red blood cells. Research has shown that folic acid may be beneficial in preventing heart disease, stroke, and colon and breast cancers.

How To Discover Your Hidden Asthma Triggers - Taking Control By Tracking Your Asthma

How To Discover Your Hidden Asthma Triggers - Taking Control By Tracking Your Asthma

Asthma is a serious lung disease effecting over 20 million people in the US alone. An asthma attack is caused by a trigger, which can be any external stimulant such as perfume, food, air pollution, cold air, animals, dust, etc., which our bodies react to. Knowing what your personal triggers are and avoiding them will help greatly to prevent asthma attacks. However, what triggers an asthma attack in some people may not even bother another asthma sufferer at all.To make things more confusing, sometimes a trigger will cause a mild reaction one day and then a severe one the next day. This could be the result of being exposed to multiple triggers, for example one of your known triggers could be pollen, but when combined with a few new unknown triggers - fabric softener, detergent, perfume or a food additive can hit very hard and trigger a major attack. On days when you are feeling tired and haven't had enough sleep or are under stress, you may also find that things which never seemed to bother you previously now suddenly do.As you see tracing them can be rather complex and requires a bit of detective work to track down and eliminate or minimize these triggers at home or at work. Keeping track of your asthma attacks by writing a journal for a few days is a good way to start. First it's a good idea to note how you were feeling the day you had an attack, if you were tired or didn't sleep well, had a fight with your friend.What did you eat? Make this detailed and include food ingredients, additives and coloring since they can be a trigger for many people. Where did you go that day? Were there weeds or flowers blooming nearby, animals, damp moldy smells around you? Did you start using a new detergent, fabric softener or household cleaner? Make a note of any exercise you do and your body's reaction to it. On one particular day did the exercise have negative results? Why? What was the weather like? What was the room where you exercised like? If the room is where you regularly go to exercise, was there anything different about it on that day?After only a few days of writing in your journal you will soon see a pattern emerging. You will have uncovered your asthma triggers and now you can take control and prevent an asthma attack by avoiding, reducing or eliminating them.However it just isn't practical or even possible to control or eliminate all triggers, particularly outside the home, at work, school or in public places. Fortunately, there is a safe non-drug solution that you should know about, a simple and natural allergy and asthma treatment, which many people have found to be very effective.

Old Fashioned Recipe For Preventing Allergies And Chemical Sensitivities

Old Fashioned Recipe For Preventing Allergies And Chemical Sensitivities

Allergies and chemical sensitivities are a symptom of a compromised immune system.Candida overgrowth in the body may be the precursor to immune dysfunction causing all kinds of illness and allergies to food, pollen and multiple chemical sensitivities. Antibiotics, sugar and refined carbohydrates help create and grow this problem.Candida lives in balance with beneficial bacteria in the colon. The colon is vital for nutrient absorption and toxin elimination and one of its key contributions is the ability to break down the foods we eat. It is the first line of defense for the immune system.Food is broken down in the colon with the help of enzymes, yeast and beneficial bacteria that live there; they help keep the colon healthy.Antibiotics kill germs but they also kill the good bacteria in the colon. This results in less bacteria creating an imbalance, allowing Candida (yeast), to dominate. Candida continues to grow out of balance when there is too much sugar in the diet, whether it comes from refined sugar or high glycemic carbohydrates like fruit, carrots or bread.My theory is that Candida overgrowth in the colon starts interfering with the body's ability to absorb nutrients, resulting in less than optimal functioning of the organs and the immune system. In addition, a poorly functioning colon is not able eliminate toxins as well and the compromise snowballs.Adding beneficial bacteria (probiotics) and fiber to the diet are very helpful. Cultured foods like kefir, cultured vegetables and beverages are very effective at delivering the beneficial bacteria to the colon intact. Getting the good bacteria from cultured food not only replenishes the colon, but the fermentation/culturing process enhances the nutrition in the food, and predigests it, providing super nutrition, which is very helpful especially while the gut is healing.Eliminating sugar and high glycemic carbohydrates is crucial and will help starve the Candida.(Note about sugar: One way that doctors can identify cancer cells is by the amount of glucose a cell consumes. Apparently, cancer cells also require more sugar!)Chemical sensitivity also develops when the immune system is not functioning properly. Examples may be severe reactions to fragrances, petrochemical products, pollution, treated fabrics and preservatives along with many other chemicals in our environment.Air purifiers that have a filter made with coconut shell carbon and zeolite can provide dramatic relief and create a less reactive place inside the home.Eliminating household chemical cleaners, pesticides, lawn care chemicals and body care products and replacing them with healthier alternatives is extremely helpful and easy to do.But remember, with the right nourishment, the body can heal itself, resist disease and fend off toxins much more easily. Pharmaceuticals and air purifiers may provide relief, but do not solve the problem.Rebuilding the body's immune system can bring lasting results.Recipe for creating health:Concentrate on creating health.Start with the colon. Add fiber to the diet, cut out processed food, sugar, and high glycemic carbohydrates. Do not use artificial sugar... use Stevia instead. Stevia is an herbal supplement that is very sweet, works well as a sugar substitute and is actually health promoting.Drink lots of water, plain clean water. Water is so effective at eliminating toxins from the body, cleaning out the sinuses, and rinsing away cellular waste. It is a wonderful energy booster too. Other liquids do not make up for water. One cup of coffee results in the need for more water because caffeine is a diuretic and lowers the body's water reserves. Hunger pains may actually be the body's need for water. Water helps eliminate body fat and promote lean body tissue.For extra support in allergy season, 8 to 10 glasses of water every single day will be helpful in reducing inflammation in the sinuses, preventing headaches and thinning mucus.Eat lots of cultured vegetables, kefir, and drink probiotic liquids every day to support colon health, rebalance the yeast overgrowth and support the immune system. (Candida can live in the sinuses, along with other parts of the body, interfering as it grows.)Eliminate soy (it can suppress thyroid function) and cook with coconut oil. Coconut oil and whole fat coconut milk is antiparasitic, antiviral, antibacterial and antifungal. It supports the thyroid, fights Candida and boosts the immune system.Daily intake of cod liver oil, that is free from soy or synthetic ingredients, helps support certain hormones in the body that are a factor in controlling allergic reactions.Try to eat only organic food. Fats, like butter, contain vitamin A, which is very helpful for the respiratory system.Nutrition for healing the body...it just makes sense.

Key Concepts of Gastric Ulcer

Key Concepts of Gastric Ulcer

Medically speaking, gastric ulcer or peptic gastric ulcer is a damage on the normal tissues that line the stomach. It is different from the duodenal ulcer, which pertains to damage on the normal tissue lining of the initial part of the bowel or the duodenum. Though gastric ulcer is a common disease among Americans, diagnosis is still quite hard to perform since the clinical presentations of disease vary. Manifestations may range from asymptomatic or showing of no symptoms to nausea, acute-life foreboding internal hemorrhage, epigastric pain, and iron-deficiency anemia.Gastric ulcer is produced from torn or sored protective layers of the stomach lining. These layers produce the mucus that protects the stomach from becoming injured by harsh digestive gases and stomach acids.CausesGastric ulcer is basically due to the imbalanced secretion of stomach enzymes and acids as well as the components released in the mucosal lining of the stomach. This then will get inflamed that may be aggravated by aspirin and NSAIDs or Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs. NSAIDs are commonly taken to combat the symptoms of other ailments such as back pain and kidney pain.Gastric ulcer is also a result of the following conditions: The presence of Helicobacter pylori or H. pylori, the bacteria responsible for causing gastric ulcer. Lessen capacity of the stomach lining to resist the stomach acids. Increase in production of the stomach acids.Risk factorsRisk factors are some of the causes that may intensify the susceptibility of a person against a disease. In this case, gastric ulcer. Regular use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications like ibuprofen and drugs such as aspirin and naproxen Chronic gastritis Smoking Mechanical ventilation Increased age Helicobacter pylori infectionInterestingly enough, stress and a number of emotional problems are not labeled as risk factors to gastric ulcer. Yet there are studies that may show otherwise. They point out that stress may be a contributing factor to the aggravation of the ailment.The chance of developing gastric ulcer is further increased by regular smoking and over-use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.Symptoms Abdominal indigestion Extreme abdominal pain that may subject the patient to sleeplessness at night. Blood in stools or black stools Fatigue Nausea Unplanned weight loss Vomiting, especially vomiting blood HeartburnIt must be noted though that there may be no manifestations of symptoms in some gastric ulcer cases.Differentiation of gastric ulcer and duodenal ulcer Classic gastric ulcer pain is often characterized by pain attacking after every meal. The use of antacids may not be as effective and may only provide temporary and very minimal relief. The gastric ulcer pain is typically sited at the epigastrium yet it may also be founded in the upper right quadrant of the stomach area and elsewhere. Unlike with gastric ulcer, duodenal ulcer pain usually sets hours after meals and during night. This may be relieved using antacids and specific foods. Pain that radiates to the back may suggest of complications involving the pancreas. There are cases of bleeding gastric ulcers and these may show significant signs of melena, hematemesis, and attacks of presyncope.Treatments of gastric ulcer are very effective yet recurrence is possible and complications are most likely to develop. Three percent of all gastric ulcer cases advance to becoming as stomach cancer so it is extremely important to inform your health care provider of all conditions that you fell during attacks.

Are Your Asthma And Allergies Caused By A Low Immune System?

Many people who suffer from asthma and allergies don't realize it, but a low immune system is very likely at the root of their problems. Medical experts agree that a lowered or improperly functioning "immune system" can and does result in several diseases such as asthma, allergies, arthritis, psoriasis, lupus, chronic fatigue syndrome and cancer to name just a few.The body's immune systems first line of defense against disease are barriers that prevent antigens, which are large protein molecules of bacteria, viruses, chemicals and other substances that appear harmful from entering your body. The barriers include your skin, mucus, cough reflex, stomach acid and even enzymes in your tears, which destroy toxins. If the antigen or toxin manages to get past these barriers, then the immune system launches a second line of defense, found in your blood. They are white blood cells, which perform a protective function by seeking out and destroying foreign protein antigens.If you suffer from a low immune system it is important to avoid things that suppress or act to destroy it, such as a high cholesterol diet, heavy metals (lead, mercury, cadmium), fat, alcohol, fried foods, food additives, obesity, industrial pollutants, pesticides, herbicides, stress, prescription drugs, too much sunlight, tobacco, and radiation.Unfortunately, there is no "magic bullet" that you can take to quickly repair your immune system, but there are several ways to help build and support it by providing your body with proper nutrition, regular exercise, adequate rest, relaxation and maintaining a positive mental attitude.Taking the following dietary steps will help protect and build your immune system:1. Limit saturated and trans fats, food additives and alcohol2. Take a good quality multi-vitamin/mineral supplement daily3. Ensure your diet includes adequate protein4. Take 1000 mg of Vitamin C daily.5. Eat 3 to 4 servings of vegetables daily.6. Eat 3 to 4 servings of legumes weekly.7. Eat 3 to 4 servings of omega-3 fatty acid-rich foods weeklyThe length of time required to re-build a low immune system of course will vary depending on your individual situation and environmental exposure to immune system suppressants. This is not an overnight process, for some people it can take three months to two years. Obviously, the higher your exposure has been to immuno-suppressants, the longer it will take to build your [*_*]. Children tend to heal much more quickly than adults or the elderly.People with allergies and asthma will find that their asthma and allergy symptoms become less frequent and less severe when their [*_*]s are strong. It's important to avoid using allergy and asthma drugs, which have toxic side effects and act to lower the [*_*]. There are natural supplements that safely and effectively eliminate allergy and asthma symptoms.

Coronary Angiogram for your Heart. Do you know what it is?

When the doctor recommends a coronary angiogram to someone close to you, the initial reaction is denial and non acceptance. Some people also believe that anyone who undergoes this test would invariably have to go through bypass surgery. Others believe that it will be painful, requiring prolonged hospital admission. But the truth is that it is a simple X-ray of the heart blood vessels, virtually painless and requires a short stay. Coronary angiogram is one of the most accurate tests in the diagnosis of Coronary Artery Disease (CAD). It is used to pinpoint the location and severity of CAD and is relatively safe. A "coronary angiogram" is the gold standard for evaluation of CAD. The test is done in a special laboratory called a cardiac catheterization laboratory, which is similar to an operating theater.How is a coronary Angiogram performed?The procedure will begin with the physician inserting an intravenous line into a blood vessel in the patients arm. Coronary angiography is performed with the use of local anesthesia and is generally not terribly uncomfortable. During a coronary angiogram, a small catheter (a thin hollow tube with a diameter of 2-3 mm) is inserted through the skin into an artery generally in the wrist. Guided with the assistance of a fluoroscope the catheter is then advanced to the opening of the coronary arteries, the blood vessels supplying blood to the heart. Next, a small amount of radiographic contrast, which is easily visualized with X-ray images, is injected into each coronary artery. The images that are produced are called the angiogram.The procedure takes approximately 10-15 minutes. After the procedure, the catheter is removed and the artery at the wrist is treated with manual compression to prevent bleeding.Risks and BenefitsCoronary Angiogram is the only test, which allows precise quantification of the severity of CAD to optimally take decisions for the treatment. In appropriate patients, the therapeutic information learned from the angiogram is far more valuable than the relatively small risk of the procedure. There is a small but finite risk of serious complication from coronary angiography, as it is an invasive test, but in the hands of experienced physicians, this risk is quite small (well below one per cent). Following the test the patients will be given instruction from their physician regarding exercise and exertion, care for the incision area and the use of medications.Long Term OutlookTreatment depends on the diagnosis made after the angiography. Narrowed coronary arteries can be treated during the angiogram itself by angioplasty. Another option for severely narrowed coronary arteries is a bypass operation. A coronary angiogram, which is normal, is as precious as the one that shows disease. A normal angiogram rules out a life threatening disease and is an impetus for the further continuation of a healthy lifestyle.

Summary

In recent years, there has been a push from organizations like the March of Dimes and the Centers for Disease Control urging women of childbearing age to make sure they get the recommended daily allowance (RDA) of folic acid, also known as vitamin B9. Women who are actively trying to get pregnant may want to consider a separate folic acid supplement. Folic acid remains important throughout pregnancy and prenatal vitamins will provide a good supply. Studies have shown that ade...