Why Semen Color, Smell and Even Taste Varies Widely

Semen quantity and quality varies not just between different men, but with the same man over the course of the month, the year, and over his whole life. Variances in color, viscosity and smell from month to month are normal, depending on stress levels, vitamin and mineral intake, hydration levels and hormone fluctuation. However, some changes in semen may reflect an underlying pathology such as a prostate disease or an STD. Learning more about penis health, nutrition, and going to the doctor when necessary, are all important factors for men to consider.

Color

There is a right way and a wrong way for semen to look. In healthy men semen appears, normally, as a milky white color. But when semen color changes, it can mean many different things. Pink or brown semen occurs because blood has mixed with the seminal fluid. According to Dr Rob Hicks on the BBC Health website, most often pink or brown semen occurs because of an infection, either in the urethra, the prostate or the seminal vesicles. Other causes include trauma, urethral polyps, prostate cancer and prostate surgery. Yellow or green semen may be a sign of a urinary tract infection. Chlamydia and gonorrhoea are two STI’s known to cause yellow and/or green semen. Other possible causes of yellow/green semen include the presence of high-dose vitamins, jaundice, and even urine.

Smell

Semen has a distinctive smell which could be described as metallic. This odor comes from the high concentrations of zinc found in semen. Zinc is an important mineral in the human body for cell growth, wound healing and immune function. For men zinc also plays a very specific function in protecting male fertility and sexual health. Zinc concentrates in the prostate tissue and acts as a local regular for healthy cell growth, helping to prevent benign prostate growth and cancerous changes. Zinc also acts as an antioxidant and antiseptic for both the prostate and the sperm. Though this micromineral is important for male health, it is not found in a huge variety of foods — the best food sources being oysters, scallops pumpkin seeds, oats, sesame seeds and chia seeds; not foods that men would eat in huge quantities every single day. Increasing these foods in the diet, or taking dietary supplements containing 15-30 mg of zinc daily, may cause a man’s semen to intensify in smell. If the semen smell changes to become malodorous and foul-smelling, it may be a sign of an infection and should be checked out by the doctor.

Quantity

Semen volume can vary a lot in men, especially as they age. The WHO states that semen volume tends to fluctuate between 1.5 ml to 7 ml in most men. Anything less than 1.5 ml may be a sign of infertility, as well as possible health problems. Often how much semen a man produces is not something he thinks about very much until he is not producing enough of it. Reasons for this can be as simple as dehydration, or as complicated as heart disease, cancer, blocked seminal vesicles and prostate disease. Researchers from Queen’s University in Belfast, Ireland, found during a clinical study that men with diabetes were more likely to suffer from low semen volume and poor sperm motility. Obesity, a high-soy diet and normal aging also contribute to low semen volume, due to increased estrogen levels which affect semen production.

Taste

Whether your semen tastes like fruit or foot might not make that much difference to you, but it might to your partner. The flavor of semen varies quite a lot between different men, and women indicate that if a man’s spunk doesn’t taste nice, they are less willing to perform oral sex. In fact, as many as 85% of women do not enjoy the taste of their partner’s semen and the reason for this may have a lot to do with his lifestyle. Male ejaculate isn’t just made up of sperm — only 2-5% of it is. The other 95-98% is comprised of water, amino acids, vitamins (ascorbic acid), minerals (zinc, selenium, potassium, magnesium), hormones, enzymes and sugars (fructose). Hence, not getting enough nutrition in the diet each day may affect the way that semen tastes. In addition, smoking tobacco, eating red meat, taking drugs and a high alcohol intake are known to make semen taste bitter or sour. Natalie Ingraham, M.P.H., states on The Kinsey Institute’s blog that oranges, pineapples, grapefruit, parsley, wheatgrass, celery and some spices may have specific functions in improving the taste of a man’s spunk.

Penis Health crèmes

Health crèmes designed specifically for the health of the male reproductive system can provide needed nutrition and support that cannot be gained from the diet. Specialist penis creme formulas (most professionals recommend Man1Man Oil) provide vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that can be absorbed directly into the bloodstream and into the local tissues. Vitamin C, E, A, D, L-carnitine, L-arginine, alpha lipoic acid and shea butter all have shown in studies to support multiple levels of male sexual health. Many of these, especially vitamin C, E and L-arginine, are important for the health of the seminal fluid and semen production.

Ovarian Cyst Removal – Is it Necessary?

Most common forms of ovarian cysts usually heal with time, sometimes without even a symptom to let the person know something is going on. On some occasions, ovarian cyst removal must be preformed in order to prevent any future physical complications.

Some of the common reasons to have ovarian cyst removal generally have to do with the condition of the cyst it's self including:

o Large, solid or strangely shaped

o High possibility of cancer

o Amount of pain being experienced due to rupturing or twisting

o Patient Age: The older you are the more likely the ovarian cyst can become cancerous.

Before any decision for ovarian cyst removal can be made, your family doctor or a specialist will do several tests in order to make sure of what they are up against and if the diagnosis of ovarian cysts is correct. Sometimes it can be difficult to determine if you actually do have ovarian cyst or another physical problem due to the generic symptoms most people suffer from. These tests can range from simple blood tests, x-ray, and ultrasounds or a CT scan.

Once the proper determination has been made about the type, shape and make up of the ovarian cyst then a choice can be made about the type of cyst removal procedure the patient will have to undergo. Ovarian cyst removal does not necessarily mean that your ovary will have to be removed.

There are two main forms of ovarian cyst removal: Open Surgery and Laparoscopic Surgery. Open surgery is reserved for cysts that are generally larger or more difficult to treat including severe twisting or bleeding. Laparoscopic surgery is less evasive, only requiring 3 to 4 small incisions usually no more then a inch long to be made so special designed tools can be passed through in order to perform the ovarian cyst removal with the least amount of trauma.

No matter what type of ovarian cyst removal surgery you under go, the surgeon will always look for any signs of cancer. If cancer is discovered, it may be necessary for one or both of your ovaries to be removed in order to prevent it from spreading further. After the cyst is removed, it will be sent to a pathologist for testing to be performed and rule out the presence of cancer.

Once the cyst removal is complete you should not experience any post op complications. Depending on type of surgery you had, Open or Laparoscopic and what all was done, will determine the length of time for you to recover. Just keep a close eye on your physical condition and if you have any questions do not hesitate to call your doctor.

Oral Thrush in Newborns – Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

Oral thrush is an infection caused by the yeast fungus known as Candida albicans and is a common illness in newborn babies. The fungus is also referred to as candidosis and moniliasis, but generally these terms describe the appearance of candida albicans in adults. This article will focus on the causes and symptoms of oral thrush in newborns as well as methods of treatment.

It may be helpful to first understand some background information on exactly what oral thrush is. Microorganisms exist everywhere in our environment and usually bacteria, viruses and fungi form a symbiotic relationship with the human body. These microorganisms are beneficial to the health of babies and adults alike and the body allows them to remain present. The fungus that causes oral thrush does not have a symbiotic relationship with the human body. Candida albicans usually works its way into the body when the immune system is in a diseased or weakened state. In their first few days of life, newborn babies are especially at risk from infections such as oral thrush.

Two specific causes of oral thrush are a reaction to antibiotics and transmission from a mother with a yeast infection. The mouth of a postnatal baby undergoes certain changes following a dose of antibiotic medication that create a breeding ground for a fungus to develop. It is also possible for a mother to pass on a yeast infection to her child in the form of candidosis. The transmission occurs from exposure in the birth canal and oftentimes results in infection when the baby is from two to ten weeks old.

Diagnosing babies is usually done using the clinical picture. This means that doctors are generally able to diagnose the infection on sight alone. Oral thrush manifests itself in the form of painful white lesions on the inside of the baby's mouth. These patches appear on the gums, insides of cheeks, palates and tongue. It is also possible for thrush lesions to work their way into the esophagus. Doctors use throat cultures, endoscopic examination and barium swallow to help diagnose an oral thrush infection that has progressed to this degree.

Nipple damage due to breastfeeding can lead to an elevated risk of Candida infection. Although the nipples and areola may not show signs of an infection certain symptoms can help indicate that one is occurring. One or both nipples may be experience stinging pain or itching. Visible signs that a mother has a Candida infection include nipples with white dots, a skin rash with small fluid filled blisters, swelling and cracking of the skin.

If a doctor has reason to believe that an infant has oral thrush, he or she may send a cell sample from the baby's tongue to a lab for analysis and confirmation. The use of a lab sample can help ensure that there are no other illnesses causing complicating a thrush infection.

When oral thrush or a yeast infection has been diagnosed, both the mother and her baby should be treated simultaneously. Coordinating care for both the mother and child helps avoid the risk of the infection being passed back and forth.

Medications for yeast can be systemic (internal) or topical (external). Often physicians will begin curing a yeast infection with a topical drug, followed by a more powerful systemic if necessary. Fluconazole is antifungal cream used to treat a mother's breasts that have come into contact with a baby experiencing oral thrush. Some examples of commercially available anti-fungal drugs include Nystatin, Lotrimin and Itraconazola. Oral thrush is often treated with Nystatin by application to the inside of the infant's mouth several times daily. For complete treatment information speak with your pediatrician.

By paying close attention to the warning signs and symptoms of an oral thrush infection, mothers can reduce the complications caused by this illness. As with all concerns related to the health of your newborn, always rely on the suggestions and information provided by your pediatrician. With treatment time and concern you and your child can overcome the challenge of an oral thrush infection.

Copyright © Safe-Baby.net 2006.

The Bad Effects Of Hepatitis B

Hepatitis B is the most common serious liver infection in the world. It is thought to be the leading cause of liver cancer. The world health organization estimates that hepatitis B infections leads to more than one million deaths every year.

The disease is caused by the hepatitis B virus (HBV) that attacks the liver. The virus is transmitted through blood and bodily fluids that contain blood. This can occur through direct blood-to-blood contact, unprotected sex and illicit drug use.

It can also be passed from an infected woman to her new born during the delivery process.

The virus can cause a range of problems including fever, fatigue, muscle or joint pain, loss of appetite, nausea and vomiting. Chronic carriers have an increased risk of developing liver disease such as cirrhosis or liver cancer because the hepatitis B virus steadily attacks the liver. Chronic carriers will usually have on going inflammation of the liver and may eventually develop cirrhosis and liver cancer. About 1% of people who are infected develop an extreme form of disease called acute fulminant hepatitis. This condition can be fatal if not treated quickly. Sufferers may collapse with fatigue, have yellowing of the skin and eyes (jaundice) and develop swelling in their abdomen.

There are several drug treatments available to treat hepatitis B. Patients may be put on a four months course of injection of the drug interferon. An alternative treatment is a drug called lamivudine which is taken orally once a day. In all, early detection of the problem goes a long way in minimizing the havoc it can cause if left to develop to the chronic state.

Diet Plan For Fatty Liver – 8 Rules To Follow To Reverse FLD

A diet plan for fatty liver should be holistic in its approach to not only improve liver health, but also the overall health of the human body. Everything you consume, good or bad, finds its way through the liver before being distributed to other areas of the body. Performing more than 200 functions, the liver is a critical organ, and a healthy liver generally corresponds to a healthy body.

Fatty liver disease (FLD) results when triglyceride fat makes up more than 5-10% of the liver by weight. Fat accumulates in and around the liver cells (hepatocytes) which causes the liver to become enlarged and heavier. When this happens, some patients complain about abdominal pain and discomfort and the sensation of feeling “stuffed” in their lower torso area on the right side of the body.

For the most part, fatty liver in its earliest stages (simple steatosis) is an asymptomatic condition. Many patients are unaware the condition exists until it worsens. When this happens, symptoms may include weakness and tiredness, nausea, anorexia, confusion, abdominal pain, and jaundice. If not remedied through diet and exercise, FLD can progress to cirrhosis or liver cancer and can become fatal.

A fatty liver cure does not exist. However, this does not mean the condition cannot be treated, slowed, or even reversed. Although alternative treatment methods such as using vitamin C and E, Epsom salts, milk thistle, and a variety of different drugs do exist and are gaining popularity in some medical circles, proper diet and exercise still remains the best way to combat FLD.

The best diets for fatty liver patients follow a few key principles. Here is a quick breakdown that can help you if you have alcoholic or non alcoholic FLD.

  • Focus on foods high in complex carbohydrates such as brown rice and whole grains.
  • Reduce your consumption of refined and simple carbohydrates like those found in sugar, white bread, egg noodles, cakes, and many desserts.
  • Eat plenty of servings of fruits and vegetables every single day. A quick tip: Raw vegetable juices can be extremely healthy for the liver.
  • Stay away from deep fried, fatty, and processed foods, especially processed meats such as sausage and hot dogs.
  • Reduce and limit your consumption of dairy products. When consuming dairy focus on organic yogurts and ricotta and/or cottage cheese. You can also opt for soy and rice milks instead of whole or 2% milks.
  • Margarine, excessive consumption of fatty condiments like salad dressing, sugary fruit juices, energy drinks, and alcohol should all be avoided.
  • Focus on lean white meats such as chicken or turkey instead of beef or pork. Free range meats are best as they don’t contain harmful steroids, growth hormones, and other antibiotics.
  • Drink plenty of water (at least 2 liters per day).

Writing Effective (and Requisite) Essay Openers

When we write for college courses, we write for an audience other than ourselves. And it’s an audience of more than one–the professor who assigned the piece. A good way to think of (and never forget) audience is to imagine we are writing the assignment for a popular magazine that sits in multiple copies on the shelves of an equally popular bookstore. For each magazine sold, pretend, we get a percentage.

Our goal, then, is to have as large and widespread a readership as possible–to hook as many browsers as we can–with an effective opener (also known as an introduction). We therefore must engage, first, before we entertain, educate, or inform.

First the Caveats and Comments on Ineffective (Bad) Openers

NO to SNORE openers – Forget burdening or alienating your readers with comments of how many people in many countries have many different ideas about life and society and all those other blah, blah, blah hard-to-wrap-the-brain-around opening commentaries…which really just send the reader off to find a more intriguing read.

NO to OBVIOUS – Similar to the snore generalizations, the obvious comments in an opener will have eyes (if not heads) rolling as readers take in the TV is mental masturbation or ads are used to manipulate us statements you can avoid–by using an old Marshall McCluhan quote or Cleo awards description, for example, instead.

NO to HYPERBOLE – Putting myself through school as a waitress, I had a number of regular customers who were writers, too, they said. They would talk at me all through my shift, reciting their best work. One insisted on reiterating his description of the verdant rolling hills that kissed the edges of the glistening waters at the feet of the majestic span of the Golden Gate Bridge…until I would get so mental I would fantasize about bringing the heft of the glistening glass coffee pot screaming down onto his head. In other words, do not exaggerate. Do not bring in heavy drama and description that will overwhelm and, again, alienate your readers. Stick with the truth. Stick with the openers that work.

We Use Modes for Engaging Openers…and I’m going to Use One Here, Out of Necessity…and Spite

I once read a how-to article on web content writing, on making a site that brings traffic (the attention of many). I had already begrudgingly given in to the understanding that web content writing is very different than academic writing–it has different goals, different audiences, and different elements that lend themselves to an ‘A’ piece of writing. In fact, it is so different that to write for the web we have to unravel all we have worked to weave, have to unlearn all we have learned as college English writers.

Don’t Confuse Web Content/Writing and Academic Writing

So the writer of this article says to start web copy you skip the opener and go directly to the main point (what we in academia know as the thesis). Okay. This made sense, I thought, as web readers read differently: they read fast, they skim, they scan, they skip…to draw the most usable info in the shortest amount of time. (Probably the way you are reading now, hoping I get on with the point).

-I was with Mr. Web when he explained these facts.

-I was with him as he noted the research findings that back up the rationale for sacrificing good academic exposition for web text.

-And I was there with his tips and tricks, which were great…until he went too far, editorializing about writers who actually use openers:

He claimed that writers who rely on openers don’t have “the courage” to just get to the point. So he lost me.

Don’t Let Anyone Shame Your Learning Writing Tricks

We can adapt to just about any rhetorical style. We can adjust our notions of what makes for good writing. But we should balk when a how-to writer insults other methods of writing. We should even disregard implications of cowardice as unnecessary ad hominem attacks. False attacks. Fallacious and floppy and frivolous teaching. Screw that.

Readers of Academic Essay Writing Appreciate (even Prefer) a Good Opener

Openers in academic writing, whether in a creatively developed literary response or a historical survey, are imperative. They are a gentler way of drawing in, luring our readers. They are at first quite challenging to get right, but our mastering them–which is possible–has nothing to do with courage, which comes from the French word, “coeur,” heart. We have plenty of heart. We’re studying English, for hell sake.

Against my wishes, then, this page opens with a declaration and gets right to the point. At first. But it also has a “grabber” slipped in–because we’re looking at grabbers and because, well, I can’t help it. I want to model decent prose for you.

Samples of Effective Essay Openers by Mode/Type

Even better, I’ll share with you some samples, written by my former students (who have granted permission for the use of their work as models):

****People Love Stories. We Love to Tell Stories. The Narrative Opener:

Once upon a time, during the era of slavery, whites were afraid of blacks, and the “word” was born. That’s why someone came up with the “word.” Two hundred years later around my sister’s house, the children still use this “word”. Sometimes I even hear myself say this “word.” But guess what? I check myself and correct myself, because when you use the “word” to address someone, no matter who you are or what color you are, it is totally disrespectful.

The word: “nigger”. (1)

****To Establish Credibility, Try a Sober, Scholarly Introduction. The Statistics/Facts Opener:

By the age of forty-four, 47 percent of American women will have had an abortion. (Day 6) To describe this statistic as anything other than a tragedy is to deny the sanctity of human life. The Christian abortion debate rests upon the moral and theological dimension[s] of this issue. To examine the moral dimensions of abortion without examining the social realm is to ignore the mutually dependent relationship that surrounds this debate. (2)

****Appealing to the Senses Lures and Keeps Readers Interested. The Descriptive Opener:

Rain is pelting my car relentlessly as I drive home from [XXX] College. Cars rushing on the freeway cause the water on the pavement to burst into a fine mist, surrounding each and every vehicle with a billowing sheet of opaqueness. Finally, I arrive in front of my little two-bedroom home. With a sigh of relief, I enter my living room.

Lately, this house has turned into a haven of safety, sheltering me as much from nature’s elements as from the unpredictable and unprovoked malevolence I experience from one of my instructors. My dread is heightened by the fact that I appear to be the primary recipient of this teacher’s outbursts of viciousness. Slowly, my gaze shifts across the room and comes to rest on the play I have to read for my English class. It is Mamet’s Oleanna. I pick up the book and soon find myself drawn into the story. Quickly, it becomes clear to me that this play [deals with] the relationship between a teacher (John) and his student (Carol). While both characters show evidence of an interesting variety of behaviors, John mesmerizes me to a greater degree. I begin to wonder whether John displays symptoms of an underlying psychological disorder. (3)

Put the Readers in the Frame, Inside the Paper. The Direct Address Opener:

You are in the midst of a blazing inferno. Your mind is moving at the speed of light. Yet you are paralyzed by fear. The silence is deafening between the confinement of the four walls. You are no longer in control. You wonder how the communication between the members of the family has ceased, specifically between Mother and Father. Each passing day, only silence can be heard. The usual chatter at the dinner table is considerably lessened. It comes down to, “Pass the corn, please.” Or one excusing oneself from the table. (4)

Advance Trust, Establish Authority from the Start. The Authoritative Quote Opener:

“Generations of students have studied calculus without ever seeing its power.” This statement is found in an article by K.C. Cole titled, “Bringing Calculus Down to Earth,” from The Los Angeles Times. I most certainly agree with Cole. At one point earlier in the course of the class (calculus), I was not sure about the use of calculus and the importance of it. Others like me, such as friends, felt the same way. For this reason, I would assume, I am doing this research. This research is for students like myself to realize that “there is something about calculus,” as Cole states in the article…. (5)

Keep with the Traditional “Show, Don’t Tell” Lesson. The Example Opener:

Sex is great. To me, it is all about feelings and experiences–the feeling of flesh against flesh, the experience of orgasm after orgasm. Sometimes, even, there is that feeling of being special, wanted, and loved. I suppose my parents had sex. It is not really an image I like to bring to mind. But when my father has sex with someone other than my mom, how am I supposed to feel then? (6)

Engage by Asking for the Readers’ Opinion and Thoughtful Participation. The Profound Rhetorical Question Opener:

Is the play, True West, written by actor/writer Sam Shepard, a sublimation of his own sibling rivalry or a rationalization of one? He writes of two brothers who are equal in intelligence but opposite in character. The older brother lives by his wit and the younger by his pen. In his unique style, Shepard uses many symbols describing the keen emotions that make up these two brothers. He also uses metaphors that reel you, the audience, into the depths of anger, pain, and the reality of life…. (7)

Finally, the Encouragement of Effective (Good) Openers

YES to APPROPRIATE introductory material. That is, use an opener that is relevant to your essay topic. Use an opener that fits the material. For example, a definition of alcoholism (which might work if you were writing a book) might be too clumsy for a cause and effect paper studying the influences of alcoholism on the family.

YES to APT openers. Do the modes that you are best at writing. And do what you best like doing. Write what works for you, your audience, and your assignment.

YES, modes overlap. A narrative opener will have descriptive details. A quote may be combined with statistics and facts. But instead of tripping on what the exact boundaries are between modes or types of writing passages, focus on the specifics of one type of opener as you understand it. The rest will be bonus material that merely enhances your style.

And YES to engaging, alluring introductions that lead your readers in to the place where your thesis/opinion sits waiting to declare your bold, informed truths. Which should never be denied or neglected…any more than your audience should be.

End Notes

(1) Bronson, A. “The Word.”

(2) Roncella, L. “Judging Abortion.”

(3) Prince, U. “Who Cares? [A Study of Oleanna]”

(4) Tolosa, W. “Dark silence.”

(5) Pham, D. “Calculus as a Necessary Tool.”

(6) Guiterrez, R. “Dad, Why Cheat?”

(7) Stark, C. “[…a Study of the Psychology of True West].”

Acid Reflux: The Symptoms To Watch Out For

Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) is a condition wherein the chyme (the semi-digested food in the stomach) goes up in to the esophagus which is primarily caused by dysfunctional lower esophageal sphincters (LES), abnormal contractions of the esophagus, and delayed emptying of the stomach.

Esophagitis, or inflammation of the lining of the esophagus, may result from GERD. This is primarily due to the reflux of acid from the stomach to the esophagus. Repeated acid reflux would normally irritate the esophagus since the pH of this acid is low enough to cause redness, swelling, warmth, pain, and loss of function (collectively known as inflammation) to the esophagus.

Heartburn results from the reflux of acid due to a dysfunctional LES. It is called a heartburn not because the actual heart burns, but because it imitates the symptoms of a heart attack since the esophagus is just near the heart. Once the acid goes up in to the esophagus, it produces a burning sensation in the chest which usually occurs after meals.

Nausea or the urge to vomit also occurs in GERD since the reflux of chyme from the stomach stimulates the esophagus to push the chyme back up to the mouth.

Regurgitation of chyme or vomiting of undigested food also occurs in GERD which is also due to dysfunctional LES. This, in turn, produces an acid taste in the mouth.

Untreated GERD could cause esophageal ulcers primarily due to the continuous irritation of the esophagus caused by acid reflux. This results to bleeding of the esophagus. If bleeding is not corrected, it can cause shock and death. Esophageal bleeding would lead to hematemesis, or blood in the vomitus, and melena, or dark, tarry stool. Untreated esophageal ulcers will also lead to esophageal perforation, which also results to shock and death if left untreated.

Barrett’s Esophagus can also occur in GERD. This is primarily due to the repeated injury of the esophageal lining caused by acid reflux, which causes metaplasia of the lining. This, however, is said to be a defense mechanism of the esophagus since it will become more resistant to injuries.

The repeated reflux of acid to the esophagus would cause spasm of the larynx resulting to dyspnea and cough. Sometimes, severe acid reflux could also cause aspiration pneumonia due to aspiration of the vomitus which causes lung damage. There are a few instances wherein the presenting manifestation of GERD is cough, rather than the heartburn.

Hygienic Practices In The Handling And Preparation Of Food

The hygienic handling and preparation of food are of great importance in the prevention of food contamination and food poisoning. In home, it is necessary to handle your food to ensure that food is prepared as hygienically as possible. This can be achieved by following a few basic rules.

1. Personal hygiene

· Before preparing food, tie hair back, wash hands, and scrub nails clean.

· Always wash the hands after visiting the toilet.

· Never cough, sneeze, spit, or smoke over the food.

· Cover up skin infections, cuts, and grazes.

· Wear a clean apron.

· Do not lick fingers or spoons and then touch the food with them.

2. Food purchase

· Buy food from clean, reputable shops, where the assistants handle the food hygienically, and the food is stored properly.

· Check that there are no animals in food shops.

· Check the date stamps on fresh foods.

· Choose fresh foods wisely (see individual foods for factors affecting choice).

· Be wary of fresh foods sold on market stalls – they should be covered to protect them from dust and flies.

3. Food storage at home

· Store fresh foods in a cool place. Use them up fairly rapidly and certainly within the time recommended on the label or pack.

· Use up old stocks of dried and canned foods before new ones.

· Cool left-over foods rapidly and eat within 24 hours.

· Keep food protected from flies, pests, and rodents, by the use muslin cloth, plastic film, or a food net.

4. Kitchen hygiene

· Regularly wash and clean work surfaces, the cooker, and the floor.

· Keep utensils clean and well stored when not in use.

· Wipe up spills as they occur.

· Do not allow pets to sit on work surfaces or to eat from utensils and dishes that will be used for humans; some animals carry viruses and bacteria which can be passed on to humans, especially young children whose resistance is not well developed.

· Rinse out the dishcloth after use and leave to air so that it does not become stagnant. Immerse in diluted bleach or disinfectant regularly.

· Do not use the dishcloth to wash the floor.

· Use very hot water and a good detergent for washing dishes, so that all food traces are removed. Nylon brushes are useful for washing intricate pieces of equipment, e.g. cheese graters, bottle necks.

· Sterilize infant feeding bottles carefully.

· Make sure that frozen poultry pork, cream, and fish are completely thawed before cooking, and then thoroughly cooked to destroy salmonella bacteria which may be present. Incomplete thawing and cooking will provide a suitable temperature for the growth and multiplication of such bacteria, and lead to food poisoning.

Waste disposal

· I Keep dustbins well away from the kitchen, in a cool, shaded position. Protect from flies, cats, and vermin by ensuring that food wastes are wrapped and the lid fits tightly.

· Disinfect the dustbin regularly, especially in summer. Use a bin liner if possible.

· Empty kitchen pedal bins every day, and wash out.

· Keep nappy pails out of the kitchen; leave them in the bathroom. Wrap disposable nappies hygienically in plastic bags before disposal.

· Do not allow the sink waste pipe to become clogged. Disinfect the sink regularly, to kill germs and prevent stagnation.

Peptic Ulcers – Causes and Cures

A peptic ulcer is a sore in the inner lining of the stomach or upper small intestine (duodenum). When the intestine or stomach’s protective layer is broken down, ulcers develop. The digestive juices contain hydrochloric acid and an enzyme called pepsin that can damage the intestine or stomach tissue. These can also injure the esophagus. There are various treatments that cure peptic ulcers the symptoms of which go away quickly.

Gastric ulcers are one form of peptic ulcers that are formed in the stomach. Those that form in the upper small intestine are called duodenal ulcers.

Causes of peptic ulcers:

The two most common causes of peptic ulcers are:

Use of non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID’s)

Infection with Helicobacter pylori bacteria

Peptic ulcer is caused when H. pylori and NSAID’s break down the stomach or intestine’s protective mucus layer which prevents digestive juices from damaging the organs.

Symptoms of peptic ulcer:

The most common symptoms of peptic ulcer are a burning pain between the navel and the breastbone. Some people also have back pain. The pain can last for a few hours and again come back to last for weeks. Some sufferers of peptic ulcer may experience loss of appetite and weight loss, vomiting, bloating or nausea. Black stools may be another symptom and these symptoms vary from one person to another.

Diagnosis of peptic ulcers:

Some simple tests pertaining to the use of blood, breath or stool will show signs of peptic ulcer if it exists. Doctors may also look for signs of H. pylori infection. An endoscopy test may also be performed by a gastroenterologist. Small areas of tissue may also be removed for ruling out stomach cancer.

How are they treated?

Most people will be prescribed medicines that reduce the amount of acid in the stomach. You may have to take antibiotics if you have an H. pylori infection. Quitting smoking and alcohol can better your chances of recovery from peptic ulcer. Use of medicines such as aspirin, ibuprofen, or naproxen for a long term may lead to peptic ulcer.

You should not in any case ignore symptoms of an ulcer. You have to treat the symptoms which can go away in a short time with the right amount of medication. If left untreated, Peptic ulcer can become fatal. Even after treatment, some ulcers may recur and you may have to continue treatment for a long time.

Disclaimer: The contents of this article are for informational purposes only. We aim to be as accurate as possible, but there may be some unintentional omission of information. The content is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your doctor or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding your medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on within this article.

How to Get Rid of Stubborn Heartburn and Indigestion

Heartburn due to acid reflux has been a serious problem for many people especially nowadays with increasingly unhealthy lifestyle trends. More and more people are complaining of the distressing symptoms of heartburn. While you may believe that only medications can help you get rid of heartburn, there are in fact many heartburn home remedies that are 100 percent natural.

With many people using the colored pills (PPIs) to treat their condition, the money – making industry of heartburn medication is becoming a huge business. It’s quite a fact that people resort to medical treatments more, rather than preventing the disorder itself. After all prevention remains the best cure.

The good news is that you can get rid of heartburn in plenty of ways. Beginning with a healthy lifestyle check. You can ask yourself this question: How’s my diet? You must understand that acid reflux is rooted from unhealthy lifestyle and poor eating habits. People are so in denial about these but it pays to be honest especially when health is concern.

Now that you know that poor diet and unhealthy lifestyle is responsible to the prevalence of the acid reflux symptoms, it is important to keep a proper balanced diet at all times. Be diet conscious and start eating right. One of the simplest yet powerful changes you can, in order to improve your diet is to eat plenty of high fiber rich foods everyday. High fatty foods can trigger acid reflux and indigestion. So better stay away from them or lessen your intake if possible.

Increasing the amount of fiber in your diet will make a significant impact in heartburn prevention. The goal is to eat high fiber rich foods and to lessen the fat intake. If you’re used to his unhealthy diet you can gradually cut down the fat diet, until your body is able to adjust. If your stomach is accustomed to low levels of fiber, abrupt changes may give you unpleasant side effects as well such as abdominal cramps, gas pain and bloating. The remedy is to take things one step at a time.

Recommended foods for people who have acid reflux are: cereals, apples, pasta, green peas, potatoes, rice, low – fat skimmed milk, carrots and cabbage. Try to eat light protein meats such as fish or chicken because they are easily digested by your stomach. Everybody knows that vegetables are healthy but the truth is, not everyone likes vegetables. If you have an acid reflux or indigestion problems it is very important to eat plenty of vegetables as they greatly help in digestion. Eating spicy foods is not good because it triggers acid reflux.

It is very important to follow the recommended diet for acid reflux at all times in order to get rid of heartburn. Through a good diet, indigestion symptoms are not only cured but the root cause of acidity is relieved. Once you’re complying to a healthy diet, you’re one step away from the complete healing process.

Three Unusual Symptoms Heartburn Can Cause

Although acid reflux is quite common, the range of symptoms heartburn can produce is surprisingly broad, with some symptoms that are easily recognizable, and others that are more unusual and can therefore be difficult to recognize as symptoms caused by heartburn.

If you suspect you may be suffering from symptoms heartburn may have triggered – whether they are common or unusual – it is important that you speak to your doctor for a formal diagnosis. This is to rule out any other underlying condition and to prevent any serious or long-term consequences that may result from the disorder.

GERD can cause you to suffer from reactions that can range from quite mild – almost unnoticeable – to ones that are actually life threatening. Keep in mind, the more dramatic symptoms heartburn causes are typically those that have developed over time, so if you do feel a bit of discomfort you shouldn’t panic. However, make a doctor’s appointment anyway to ensure you know the degree and type of GERD you are suffering from and what your options are.

Aside from typical symptoms heartburn presents, you may also want to watch for these less common symptoms, which can include:

· Pain – though pain is one of the more common symptoms heartburn has to offer, there are forms of pain that are considered to be quite unusual. For example, the typical pain felt from GERD includes a burning sensation in the mid to upper chest region, or a burning sensation in the esophagus or lower throat area. However, more rare are pains that migrate to the shoulder blade or overall shoulder area.

· Vomiting – among the more unpleasant symptoms heartburn presents is varying degrees of vomiting. This can include wet or sour burps, wet hiccups, or food coming up a bit within an hour of eating. Less common versions of this potential symptom of GERD include feelings of nausea during or soon after eating or sometimes projectile vomiting. Though not common, there have been cases where this has occurred and should be checked if you experience these symptoms and suspect GERD.

Respiratory – the respiratory system is easily impacted by GERD and therefore frequently presents with symptoms caused by heartburn. These commonly include a runny nose, bad breath, recurrent sore throat, sinus infections, upper respiratory infections, wheezing, bronchitis, asthma, a nagging dry cough, coughing at night, frequent throat clearing, labored or noisy breathing, a hoarse or deepened voice, or nodules on the vocal cords. More rarely however, GERD can develop into sleep apnea, aspiration (inhalation of stomach acids into the lungs), pneumonia, and laryngospasm (a brief spasm of the vocal cords that temporarily interrupts breathing, usually lasting up to 30 seconds).

Due to so many different kinds of symptoms – and a range of uncommon symptoms that can easily be mistaken for other illnesses, diseases, and conditions – acid reflux may not be the obvious choice as a diagnosis. Only a doctor can help you know for certain if your symptoms heartburn may be causing are indeed a result of GERD. When in doubt, it is always best to seek the advice of a medical professional. This is especially true in the case of children, who may need different remedy options than adults.

Three Ways H Pylori Can Kill

In a recent survey I conducted on H Pylori, one of the most common questions that people asked was “Can H Pylori Kill?” Well, unfortunately the answer to this question is “yes, H Pylori can kill”. It may surprise you to read this, especially if your doctor has dismissed H Pylori as only a minor problem (some doctors won’t even treat H Pylori, despite overwhelming medical and scientific evidence that the bacterium can cause severe illness).

So how can H Pylori kill?

1. Perforated Ulcer, Bleeding Ulcer, Perforated Peptic Ulcer

This is a very serious condition where an untreated stomach ulcer can burn through the wall of the stomach (or other areas of the GI tract), allowing digestive juices and food to leak into the abdominal cavity. Treatment generally requires immediate surgery. The ulcer is known initially as a peptic ulcer before the ulcer burns through the full thickness of the stomach or duodenal wall. Because H Pylori causes 80% stomach ulcers and 95% duodenal ulcers, this is one way that it can be fatal.

2. Stomach Cancer (MALT Lymphoma)

MALT lymphoma is a form of lymphoma involving the mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue (MALT), frequently of the stomach, but virtually any mucosal site can be afflicted. Gastric MALT lymphoma is frequently associated (72-98%) with chronic inflammation (gastritis) as a result of the presence of Helicobacter pylori. It is estimated that approximately 1% of people with H Pylori develop this condition which, if left untreated, may lead to death. If the disease is limited to the stomach (which is assessed with computed tomography), then 70-80% of patients will have a complete regression on treatment with antibiotic eradication of H. pylori.

3. Heart Disease

Recent studies have suggested an association between H Pylori and heart disease. Although the research is not yet definitive, there is enough evidence to keep an open mind on this issue. Several mechanisms, including molecular mimicry and elevations in cholesterol and inflammatory markers in the blood (such as C reactive protein) have been postulated as contributing to heart disease.

**What To Do**

The diseases discussed in this article are advanced and serious conditions that will likely only affect a small percentage of people with H Pylori. Millions more people, however will suffer with peptic ulcers, duodenal ulcers, reflux, stomach pain, IBS, rosacea, hives and nausea as a result of H Pylori.

It is, therefore, very important to treat H Pylori and run follow up testing 4 weeks after treatment to ensure that it has been eradicated. Triple Therapy antibiotics will work for some people, but others will require a natural treatment using herbs such as mastic gum, MSM, berberine, garlic and Matula Herbal Formula.

Reflexology and Edema

What is edema (also spelled oedema), anyway?

Well, it’s an observable swelling that comes from a fluid accumulation in body tissues.

And, edema most commonly occurs in the feet and legs, where it’s referred to as peripheral edema.

The swelling is the result of the accumulation of excess fluid under the skin in the spaces within the tissues. We already have fluid there, the interstitial fluid, but this is more than usual.

Other parts of the body, such as the face and hands, can also be affected.

As many of us know after a long day of shopping (or walking around an art museum, or just standing on our feet) – swelling or edema around the ankles etc., can happen. And, it can happen to anyone.

At night, the fluid tends to drain from the legs so that foot/ankle edema is usually less obvious when you get up in the morning.

But, is it serious?

Well, depending on how extreme it is and how long it’s been there… it could be!

Types of Edema



Most of us will have experienced edema in our everyday life.

We’ll notice that our rings don’t fit or our ankles are a little puffy. And if you’ve had a little too much alcohol, you’ll see it in the morning – right before your eyes – in that puffy face of yours.

It comes and it goes but if it stays – well that could mean something different..,

There are 2 main types of edema:

  • In non-pitting edema, which usually affects the legs or arms, pressure that is applied to the skin does not result in a persistent indentation.

Pitting edema which can be demonstrated by applying pressure to the swollen area by depressing the skin with a finger, and a persistent indentation occurs. That means that the skin does not spring back but rather the indentation from your finger pressure remains, which indicates something more serious.

Edema has been described as the result of venous ulceration, which is often caused by an increase in tissue pressure (increased fluid within the tissue) because of increased capillary permeability.

Some Causes of Edema

Certainly, there can be many causes for edema. Some are fleeting as I mentioned above, while others are much more serious.

If you have edema (or any swelling) and don’t know the cause, it’s important that you see your doctor. You’ll feel better to know that nothing is wrong… or, if there is, you’ll want to know that too.

Edema of the ankles and lower legs can be mild and passing or, it can accompany other conditions, including obesity, diseased leg veins, kidney disease, cirrhosis of the liver, anemia, and severe malnutrition. It might also be a characteristic of congestive heart failure.

And, there could be other factors that might contribute to its onset, including:

  • Eating a poor diet that’s high in salt and carbohydrates
  • Taking birth control or hormone replacement therapy pills
  • Pregnancy and PMS
  • Sodium retention
  • Varicose veins and history of phlebitis
  • Allergic reactions
  • Neuromuscular disorders
  • Trauma
  • Abusing drugs

Symptoms:

One symptom is when, initially, the feet and legs will appear swollen as the day progresses, but after a period of time, the swelling will set in first thing in the morning and continue to worsen throughout the day.

There’s probably a certain amount of edema that we can live with when it’s found to not be a problem.

But, it can become serious – particularly if the edema is advanced and has been around for a while – it might cause pitting (as mentioned above, when you press on the swollen area for a few seconds, you will notice an indentation in that area that continues long after the finger-pressure is removed). Continued swelling can cause skin ulcerations.

Over time, other symptoms could develop as a result of the fluid retention and the pressure on the tissue and the body:

  • High blood pressure
  • Headaches
  • pressure on the skin
  • Increased urination
  • Palpitations
  • Swollen hands and/or wrists
  • puffiness of the face around the eyes , in the feet, ankles, and legs
  • weight gain

Salt Intake and Edema

Okay, we know that food tastes better with salt and that’s why so many products and restaurants load their food up with it.

It’s usually in vast quantities in processed foods. Even ‘health foods’ can have lots and lots of salt (it’s a pity that salt, sugar and fat are things that make food taste better and are overused in our culture).

Almost anything can be okay in moderation – but we’re way over the top with these foods.

The body’s balance of salt is usually well-regulated. A normal person can consume relatively small or large quantities of salt in the diet (although extremes are best avoided) without concern for developing salt depletion or retention.

The amount of salt excreted by the kidneys is regulated by hormonal and physical factors that signal whether retention or removal of salt by the kidneys is necessary.

If someone has a kidney disease that impairs the function of the kidneys – the ability to excrete salt in the urine is limited.

In some conditions, the amount of salt in the body increases, and this may cause a person to retain water and develop edema.

Common Treatments

Over the counter diuretics containing ammonium chloride and caffeine (think Aqua-Ban®) are sold with the promise to relieve symptoms related to edema. More severe edematous conditions require medical attention.

Treatment of edema with prescription medications is limited to the use of diuretics, commonly referred to as “water pills.”

Commonly, treatment consists of managing the underlying condition, which may include: inadequate nutrition; liver, heart, and kidney disease; or obstruction of blood or lymph flow. In some cases, a salt-restricted diet may be recommended.

If the edema is localized and due to a strain or trauma, people report have gotten good results from homeopathic products like ‘Traumeel’ & ‘Topricene’. I keep both of them at hand.

What Might Help?

  • Diet is always key – watch your salt intake and eat lots of vegetables
  • It’s always a good idea to watch your salt intake.
  • If your legs or ankles are puffy, it’s suggested that you elevate your legs above your heart while lying down.
  • Exercise your legs. This could help pump fluid from your legs back to your heart.
  • Some people find that wearing support stockings (sold at most drug and medical supply stores) help.
  • Reflexology could be a great healthy support – OR NOT – read on…

What Can Reflexology Do?

The fluid that builds up to become edema is normally brought back to the heart via the lymphatic system.

Unlike the circulatory system which has a pump (the heart), the lymphatic system relies on movements of the body to help drain it’s fluids.

Since there are no little pumps at the ends of our fingers and toes, the gentle movements of our reflexology techniques (thumb and finger-walking) at the extremities, supports the natural processes of the whole body.

Once again, I’ll remind you that reflexologists don’t treat, diagnose or prescribe.

And, I’m not even interested specifically in the movement of local fluids. My focus is on the whole body, the organs and organ systems.

But another “fringe benefit” of my reflexology work is the potential to help the fluid tides as well.

However beware, there might be some edemic conditions that don’t need this or are too weak to benefit.

Yes – that’s right, if the condition is not diagnosed – or even if it is diagnosed – and it’s advanced edema (pitted edema is advanced) – you must always check first with the doctor before working.

Why?

Because, unless you are a doctor, you don’t know if it will help or will be too much fluid movement for an obviously compromised system to handle.

No guessing here – remember, someone who is sick will have a medical team. It’s in everyone’s best interest to check with the medical team. They won’t mind or be shocked – it’s what they all do.

Now my guess is almost always that reflexology will help.

But, if someone is very ill, it’s the MD on the team that must know and approve any work before you can be sure about proceeding. They know the whole story about their patient’s health and they’ll base their recommendations on the big picture.

You and even the person with the edema may not understand or even know all the implications of their condition.

So it’s easier than you thought – and there’s no guess work – just make the call to inform the team and get the okay for proceeding with reflexology.

Easy as pie (is that a prairie expression?).

A little puffiness is a pretty common sight. In a healthy individual it doesn’t represent a problem unless it’s gone on for too long, has impeded movement or is of concern.

And, yes – there are reflexes to the immune system.

Don’t forget the spleen (the largest lymphoid in the body and thymus reflexes too – both are important).

10 Hot Tips for Passing the BLS and CPR Exam

Here is a guide to help you improve your chances of passing the certification exam for BCLS, BLS, and CPR. If you take the advice given here seriously, you will do very well on the exam. But you must allow yourself plenty of time to learn all of this material – especially if you are new to this.

1. Study and memorize study guides There are many study guides available for BCLS that can helps you study the need to knows and it is easy to take with you to study in your spare time. The study guide is not a replacement for the hands on practice and testing sessions that CPR class is known for. You need to find a study guide that helps you memorize the important things that help you perform better. There are guidelines for all age groups with the most up to date information based on evidenced based practice and research. Infants, children – large and small and adults are included with the how to do – one and two rescuer CPR, choking – conscious and unconscious, AED and pads application, and airway management.

2. Read and study the BCLS Certification Manual

3. Dress comfortably and be prepared to work on your knees (explain to your instructor if this is not possible)

4. Watch online videos on BCLS, AED and other topics

5. Take practice tests over and over until you get them all correct There are questions on many topics, including age specific questions. Topics on the exam include AED use, safety at the scene of the victim, conscious and unconscious choking victims, ventricular fibrillation and early defibrillation, one and two rescuer CPR scenarios, initial assessments, infant techniques for two-rescuer CPR, depth and rate of compressions for all age groups, and airway and ventilations.

6. Practice doing fast and hard compressions (5 cycles of 30 compressions to 2 breaths) on a doll or cushion for 2 minutes, so you can perform high-quality-CPR at the class, know the landmarks for chest compressions, depth and recoil of compression, 2-thumb technique;

7. Review the differences between the age groups and the BCLS requirements for CPR Review choking, AED pads, quick assessment for responsiveness, heart rates in infants that require initiation of chest compressions, breathing rates, a 10 second pulse check, positioning of the airway, and recovery positions, etc.

8. Understand the non-trained “hands only” CPR concept versus healthcare 30:2 CPR ratio Consider purchasing your own face shield or pocket mask with a one-way valve.

9. Read about the Bag-Mask-Valve (AMBU bag) Also, the pocket masks, positioning the victim’s airway with or without suspected neck injury other airway adjuncts; first aid. Diagnosis that are life threatening and important to learn about and recognize the symptoms; examples are myocardial infarction (heart attack) and stroke.

10. Participate in class, and ask and answer lots of questions Speaking up and asking many questions helps you understand and will facilitate your classrooms ask more detailed questions as well.

Heart Attack Prevention Secrets

Heart attacks are terrible things. Shooting pain down your arm followed by what feels like a semi truck driving into your chest is just not something that anybody should look forward to. Luckily these days if you can get to the hospital in time there's a fairly good chance that you can survive your heart attack but it can still leave you in pretty bad shape and forever alter your lifestyle afterwards.

In this article today I'd like to talk about several different prevention secrets that should help lower your risk for heart attack in many cases and circumstances. Talk to your doctor before engaging in any of these tips.

The first thing you need to do is lower your cholesterol. Some people need to use cholesterol-lowering statin drugs such as Lipitor but some people choose to go a more natural route. Be sure to consult your doctor to determine the best way for your specific circumstances.

Cholesterol in our bodies comes from things like eggs and meat and whole milk and other animal food sources but most of the cholesterol in our bodies is produced by our own bodies. Dietary fat is a key ingredient in this equation because the more that you consume the more cholesterol your body will make; so try to cut out dietary fat if at all possible.

A good target to have is 20%. Try to get no more than 20% of your total calories in a given day from fats. To do this the only thing you can do is eliminate fatty foods from your diet. Here are some tips …

Switch from oil-based salad dressings to mustard or balsamic vinegar-based ones. Try to cut out butter, margarine, and mayonnaise as well. Try to replace them with things like jam or roasted garlic. Red meat is bad as well so try to substitute white meat instead or give up meat completely if you can. Finally try to cut down on whole or low-fat milk and cheeses as well as commercially baked foods.

Finally, another great way to prevent heart attacks is to simply reduce the amount of stress in your life. Stress releases adrenaline and adrenaline like chemicals which will always raise your blood pressure which in turn will make your heart beat faster. Your heart does not need this extra workload and it can increase your risk for heart attack over the long run.

Reducing stress in your life is easier said than done but one simple technique that I like to use is to engage in a deep breathing routine of 10 deep breaths followed by 10 shallow breaths followed by 10 more deep breaths. I do this several times throughout the day whenever I feel myself becoming stressed out. It only takes a few minutes and can work wonders on your stress levels.

So there you have several simple heart attack prevention secrets that just about anybody can employ without a whole lot of effort or stress. You do not have to engage in all of these tips but adding as many as possible is certainly beneficial in the long run.