Common Insulin Injection Problems and Their Solutions

The use of insulin as a treatment for diabetes may become more common as the American Diabetes Association’s new treatment algorithm places basal insulin as a possible second-line treatment strategy after lifestyle modification and Metformin. Beginning insulin as a form of treatment requires proper education regarding injection technique. However, even with proper education by a certified diabetes educator problems can still occur. Here are some of the most common problems I encounter at the diabetes care center where I serve as the diabetologist and medical director.

 

Painful injections:

  • Review your technique with your nurse educator.
  • Try injecting at a 45° angle; you may be hitting muscle.
  •  Be sure the alcohol has dried.
  • Inject quickly.
  • Check to be sure you have not bent the needle when removing the cap.
  • Change to a smaller needle length and/or diameter (gauge).
  • Be sure the insulin is not too cold.
  • Try injecting in a different site.
  •  Do not use needles more than once.
  • Try to relax the muscle below the injection site.
  • Larger doses just hurt more-sorry.

Bubbles in your insulin syringe: They won’t harm you if they are injected into the subcutaneous space; however, they obviously take up space in the syringe and will cause an inaccurate dose. Here are suggestions for avoiding bubbles: 

  •  Draw up your insulin slowly and steadily from the vial.
  •  Draw up two or three more units of insulin into the syringe than you need.  If bubbles are present, flick the syringe with one of your fingers to make the bubbles rise to the top and once the bubbles are at the top or you can find no bubbles then push the extra units of insulin back into the vial.
  • If bubble do appear you can inject all the insulin back into the vial and redraw the dose.

 Bleeding at the site of injection:

  •  Do not rub the injection site.
  •  Apply light pressure with your finger to prevent bruising.
  • If a bruise appears, then do not use that injection site again until the bruise resolves.
  • Frequent bleeding may indicate poor technique or another medical problem; contact your healthcare provider and/or nurse educator.

Insulin is dripping from the pen needle after injection:

  • Wait at least five seconds after you inject before removing the needle.
  • For doses of 25 units or more, wait 10 seconds before needle removal.
  • When using a needle with a larger bore than 29-gauge, i.e., 28 or lower, wait 10 seconds before removing the needle.
  • Do not carry a pen with the needle attached.  This causes air to enter the cartridge, thus slowing the time it will take to get the insulin dose.

 Insulin is leaking from the injection site:

  •  Try using a longer needle.
  •  Try a different injection site.
  • Be sure you release the pinch before you remove the needle from the skin.

 The injection device is clogged:

  • Small amounts of insulin may be caught in the needle from a previous use:  Never re-use needles.
  • There may be a clump in the insulin:  If you use cloudy insulin, be sure to properly mix your insulin before drawing it up.
  • Cloudy insulin can dry inside the needle or syringe if drawn up too far before the time of injection:  Fill your syringe closer to the time of your injection.

If these solutions do not solve your problem you need to contact your diabetes educator or provider for further assistance.

Possible Causes Of Peptic Gastric And Duodenal Ulcer

Recent studies have indicated the bacteria (lately discovered) Helicobacter Pylori as the primer cause for stomach and duodenum peptic damages. Due to the fact that this aggressive bacteria works in synergism with other potential factors such as acid secretion, it produces major destructions like inflammation and ulcerations of the gastric and duodenal tissues.

Most important factors leading towards ulcer are hydrochloric acid and pepsin contained in the stomach. In normal conditions these chemical substances are in perfect balance and do not cause damages of the tissues. This is how the stomach protects itself against harmful effects:

1. Mucous glands secrete the lubricant necessary to cover and shield the outer layers of the stomach and duodenum.

2. Gastric tissues produce bicarbonate which wads and neutralizes any kind of aggressive acid.

3. An efficient blood supply in all stomach layers.

4. Constant renewal and repair of the gastric cells.

Most dangerous for the stomach’s tissues ate non steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as Naproxen Sodium, Acetylsalicylic acid and Ibuprofen. Some of them are used to cure different problems of the articulations. This is how NSAIDs destroy digestive protect-mechanisms:

1. They damage the secretion of protective mucus and bicarbonate and make stomach and duodenal mucous defenseless against HCl and pepsin.

2. They affect cell renewal of the digestive system and hinder the normal blood circulation.

A basic factor of ulcer appearance is Smoking. According to studies we know cigarettes hinder the healing of al older ulcer, produces recurrence though treatment, and can definitely increase one’s chance of getting ulcer.

Caffeine also stimulates the acid secretion in the stomach. Caffeine rich food and beverages can worsen an already existing ulcer but caffeine alone can produce major destructions to the stomach mucous.

Alcohol leads to gastric ulcer even though there has been found no exact link between the two. Ulcer is more commonly encountered at patients with liver cirrhosis most often seen in alcohol addicts.

Researchers have established no exact link between ulcer and emotional stress but have proven it to cause relapses and aggravation of the condition. Another kind of stress is the physical one caused by severe pathological conditions or major surgical interventions. It can easily lead to development of ulcer especially in the stomach.

There is however an assembling between ulcer and heartburn and both can be treated by consuming vegetables.

Do You Know What Kick Started Your Leaky Gut?

This is Part 1 of a 3 Part Series explaining exactly how Leaky Gut develops and progresses.

There are probably many of you reading my articles and wondering to yourself, what is Leaky Gut? If you fall into this category then this article is for you! Without getting into the causes of it let’s take a look at exactly how it progresses.

I don’t want to bore with you an anatomy lecture so I’m going to keep this as simple as possible.

Initial Onset of Leaky Gut

How does it start? Well, there is no one single cause. It is typically the accumulation of multiple stressors on the digestive tract that cause inflammation and result in the initial onset of Leaky Gut.

These chronic stressors create continuous inflammation which literally burns the intestinal lining and causes damage to the digestive tract. Over time this damage breaks down the intestinal lining and Leaky Gut develops.

There are two extremely important parts of the intestinal lining which are the first to be damaged due to intestinal inflammation, the mucosal barrier and the microvilli.

When damage occurs to these two outermost layers of the intestinal lining, the result can be detrimental. When the mucosal barrier becomes damaged, the first thing that happens is you lose 70-80% of your immune system which leaves your body vulnerable to infection. This also forces the remaining parts of your immune system to work overtime to fight off all of the new invading unwanted particles and pathogens. This results in an overactive immune system. When this continues and the microvilli become damaged, you lose your ability to properly digest your food and absorb the nutrients that your body needs to function properly.

Now you have lost the ability to properly digest your food, the undigested food particles become an all you can eat buffet for harmful parasites, bacteria, and yeast/fungi. Normally these pathogens do not have enough food to thrive but now there is the perfect environment to support these pathogens existing in your gut. These harmful pathogens then push out the beneficial bacteria and create an imbalance in the gut flora also known as dysbiosis.

So, what does the this leave you with? Just to name a few Leaky Gut Symptoms…

1. Intestinal Gas

2. Intestinal Bloating

3. Constipation

4. Reoccurring Illnesses

5. Reoccurring Infections

6. Periodontal Disease

7. Depression

Natural Remedies for Irregular Menstruation, Menstrual Cycle Irregularities

Every woman experiences the menstrual cycle, which is basically the changes her body under goes to prepare it for a pregnancy. Every month, the uterus in the woman’s body grows a new lining to prepare itself for a fertilized egg. It sheds this lining when there is no fertilized egg to start the pregnancy. This shedding is known as the monthly menstrual bleeding or periods. The menstrual blood flows from the uterus through the opening in the cervix and flows out through the vagina. A woman has menstrual periods beginning from her early teen years till menopause occurs.

A menstrual cycle is calculated from the first day of the start of bleeding till the first day of the bleeding next month. On an average the menstrual cycle is 28 days in most of the women, but a menstrual cycle of 21 to 35 days is also normal. Initially in the teen years, the menstrual cycle is uneven and can vary a lot. This condition slowly gets regularized with time. As one approaches menopause, the cycle usually gets longer and then eventually stops. For most of the women, the menstrual bleeding lasts for about 3 to 5 days.

During the first half of the cycle, the estrogen hormone levels begin to increase. Estrogen is the female hormone which helps to keep the body strong as the woman ages and also makes the uterus lining grow and thicken. At this time, an egg in the ovary starts to mature and leaves the ovary on the 14th day on average. This is called ovulation. When the egg leaves the ovary, it passes to the uterus through the fallopian tubes. This time is best time for the woman to get pregnant. When a man’s sperm enters and fertilizes the egg, it attaches itself to the uterine wall. If it does not fertilize, the lining is shed again during the periods. Every woman’s body may not be able to follow this exact schedule resulting in irregular menstruation.

Factors like illnesses, weight change, stress, medications, poor nutrition and travel can affect the cycle and cause irregular menstruation. Disorders of the thyroid gland can also result in irregular periods. While it is normal to sometimes have a late period or longer cycle, it is required to use natural remedies for irregular menstruation if this condition persists.

It is better to check for pregnancy if you skip the periods for long before using the natural remedies for irregular menstruation. However, the natural remedies are safe and help in the condition of irregular menstruation. Some of the natural remedies for irregular menstruation are as below:

1. Carrot juice: Drink this regularly which will help to regularize the periods.

2. Ginger: Ginger with honey will help in this condition.

3. Fenugreek: Consume fenugreek seeds will help you get rid of irregular menstruation.

4. Asafetida: This is very beneficial and one of the good natural remedies for irregular menstruation.

5. Diet: One should eliminate spicy, junk food and refined food from the diet. Increase intake of protein rich food and eat pumpkin, drumsticks, bitter gourd, papaya and cucumbers.

6. Fennel seeds: Fennel seeds are also effective to even out the periods.

Other than these natural remedies for irregular menstruation follow a healthy well balanced diet and a stress free life. Exercise regularly and practice yoga to have regular and comfortable menses.

An Introduction To Gall Bladder Cholesterolosis

The biliary system is usually affected by gallbladder cholesterolosis, which causes changes on the gallbladder wall because of high levels of cholesterol. Te main reason for this condition is chemical imbalance in the bile and unnatural functioning of the gall bladder which causes the cholesterol to get deposited in the gallbladder walls. This condition has to be treated because it may cause some additional health problems.

It has been reported that this condition is much more frequently seen in women than in men and also in people over 50 years old. The affecter person doesn’t experience any symptoms at the beginning and just in some rare cases, there may be symptoms like painful sensation and discomfort in the abdomen. If not treated at the initial phase, this condition will require a surgical intervention in the late stages.

There are two ways in which this condition can have influence on the function of the gall bladder – local and general. Local cholesterolosis is known for the creation of small polyps, up to 10 mm in size, on the gallbladder walls. On the other hand, general cholesterolosis is actually an inflammation of the gallbladder mucosa.

In order to see if a person is affected with cholesterolosis it can have ultrasound tests, which can easily see if there are polyps or some masses on the gallbladder. If smaller polyps are noticed they can be successfully treated with proper medications. However, if the ultrasound scanning shows that larger polyps are present, then it is necessary to have the gallbladder surgically removed. It is important to have a biopsy before the surgery because cholesterolosis can develop into gallbladder cancer if it hasn’t been treated.

Another disease which can lead to gall bladder cancer is adenomyomatosis. This disorder may cause thickening of the gallbladder walls. These two disorders are very similar, and the doctor has to check the gall bladder walls before making the final diagnose. However, both these disorders can cause malignancies and for that reason it is necessary to diagnose and treat them quickly. In cases like this, the time of the treatment may make a huge difference and wither the recovery will be complete, or it will be partial, which still has the risks of developing malignancies. For that reason, it is important to consult your doctor whenever you notice some problems with the gallbladder and do all the necessary tests to see what are the reasons for that. As we have started previously an early diagnosis and treatment may lead to complete recovery.

Ovarian Cysts – How to Deal With the Pain

If you have an ovarian cyst, then you know exactly the type of pain that is involved. You know how badly it hurts and how no matter what you try, you just can’t get rid of it. You can barely sit without feeling the pain and lying down doesn’t make matters any better. No matter what you do, you are always in a constant state of pain and you are sick and tired of this. You really want a solution and you need one fast.

When it comes to ovarian cysts, there are ways to deal with the pain and even treat it without resorting to drastic measures. Although surgery is a great way to get rid of the pain and the cyst altogether, it is extremely expensive and you have to go through some strict healing routines. You don’t have time for this so you need an easier way to deal with the pain.

You can throw away all of those painkillers because a great solution is on the horizon for you. You don’t have to spend any money and you will finally be able to deal with the pain and start to heal the cyst. This magic cure is known as heat. All you have to do is get a towel hot or use some sort of other warm compress and you will be able to get results. Any time of the day where you have a spare 20 minutes can be used to apply heat to the source of the pain. Almost immediately, you will start to the get the relief that you have been dreaming about.

Breastfeeding Thrush – The Most Common Causes

Taking care of a newborn is hard enough without having to contend with thrush! Whether you experience itching, soreness while nursing, or even stabbing pains deep within your breast ducts, breastfeeding thrush can be difficult, to say the least. Sometimes your baby may have symptoms and sometimes not. When your baby has white patches of yeast in her mouth, she may also be unusually fussy, making life even harder for a breastfeeding mom.

If you or your baby have breastfeeding thrush, you may be wondering what caused it in the first place. If you have thrush it’s usually a sign that something’s more deeply out of balance in your body. It means you need to bring things back into balance so you (or your baby) don’t develop a more severe health problem than just thrush.

The yeast candida albicans is present everywhere; it’s naturally occurring on your skin, in your digestive tract; it can even be found in the air! So it’s not the yeast that’s the problem, it’s the yeast overgrowth that’s causing the problem. Everyone has some yeast in their body, but some people develop symptoms of thrush and others don’t. The difference is found in the conditions of your body (and your baby’s body) and your immune system.

When your body’s natural yeast defenses are down, the yeast can start to grow out of control. It’s also more likely to be passed on to your baby, whose own immune system is just barely developed. Here are some of the factors that predispose you to breastfeeding thrush:

Antibiotics: Antibiotic use during pregnancy or labor is a proven risk factor for breastfeeding thrush. Even if you DON’T develop thrush right away, without the right precautions even one-time antibiotic use can lead to serious yeast overgrowth months or even years down the line. Antibiotics take down your body’s natural yeast defenses.

Surgery: With c-sections more common than ever (as many as 1 in 3 first time moms undergo c-section!), there’s a great likelihood of experiencing two major risk factors for thrush: surgery and antibiotics. Surgery puts your immune system under tremendous stress. With your immune system down, it’s easier for yeast cells to invade and take hold.

Steroid Use: Steroids work by suppressing your immune system, so if you’ve taken them or are taking them, they can be a major factor in the development of thrush.

Birth Control Pills: If you just had a baby, it’s probably safe to say you are not quite ready to have another one! However, if you’re experiencing thrush, it’s better to choose another method of birth control. Birth control pills disrupt your natural hormonal balance in a way that fosters yeast overgrowth.

Weakened Immunity: Pregnancy and childbirth are quite taxing on your body and this makes your more vulnerable to all kinds of health problems, including yeast/thrush overgrowth. It’s so important as a new mom to try to take good care of yourself; eat healthy, freshly prepared food, rest and enjoy your new baby as much as you can. Let the housework pile up; you can always get to it later.

Prematurity: Premature babies’ immune systems are not developed; they are also likely to have experienced other thrush risk factors, such as antibiotic or steroid exposure, etc. This makes premature babies more vulnerable to thrush. If you’re breastfeeding and your preemie develops thrush, he or she may also pass it on to you.

Once you have thrush, it’s important to take care of it thoroughly so that it doesn’t become a source of ongoing health problems. Yeast overgrowth has been linked with many health conditions, including asthma, allergies, arthritis, migraine headaches, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue and other serious conditions. If your baby has thrush, without the right treatment he or she could also become subject to yeast-related health problems months, or even years down the line.

Don’t let thrush get you down! Take action and you’ll not only experience relief from thrush, you’ll find renewed energy, health and strength.

Steatohepatitis Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment Options

Steotohepatitis is the inflammation of the liver due to the over accumulation of fat in the liver. This disease is also known as the fatty liver acid disease and is common amongst alcoholics. It is also frequently observed among obese persons and those who have diabetes and other metabolic syndromes. The accumulation of fat in the liver is caused by drinking too much alcohol and eating too much fatty foods. However, there are also cases where a person who is diagnosed with steotohepatitis has not consumed a lot of alcohol or fat laden food, and who is neither obese nor diabetic. There are two types of steatohepatitis, namely alcoholic steatohepatitis and non-alcoholic steatohepatitis.

Non-Alcoholic Steatohepatitis

Non-alcoholic steatohepatitis or NASH is a rare disease because while most people have fat in their liver, most do not show signs of their liver swelling, and yet in certain individuals the fat causes the liver to swell. The reason why this happens is still unknown, but some doctors theorized that this may be due to the genetic makeup or that the person is diabetic or obese. Another possible cause may be high cholesterol levels or other metabolic problems. Most people suffering from NASH are between 40 and 50 years old, but there are cases where kids are diagnosed with NASH.

Unfortunately, there is no specific way to diagnose NASH. To know whether a person has NASH, he has to go to a doctor or a specialist to undergo an abdominal ultrasound, a scan, a MRI or even a biopsy. The symptoms can only be seen when the disease is already in advanced stages. Also, NASH can progress and develop into cirrhosis or fibrosis in the liver which is life threatening and irreversible. So, it is better to detect the disease in earlier stages so it can be treated immediately, so that further advancement of the disease can be avoided.

Alcoholic Steatohepatitis

Alcoholic steatohepatitis is a liver disease caused by too much consumption of alcohol. The alcohol kills the cells in the liver thereby destroying the function of the liver as well. It is common among people who drink everyday for five years or longer. The kind of alcohol is irrelevant; instead the purity of alcohol is the culprit. Actually a 60 to 80 ml of pure alcohol per day for men and 40 to 50 ml of pure alcohol per day for women is toxic to the body. Also more women develop alcoholic steatohepatits than men.

There are three types of alcoholic steatohepatitis. The first type is alcoholic fatty liver, where the liver is enlarged, firm and has turned into a pale yellow color. The second type is alcoholic hepatitis, where fibrosis is observed in the liver. There is also an inflammation caused by the hepatitis virus and the liver feels tender to the touch. The third type is alcoholic cirrhosis, the end stage liver disease where lumps have formed in the liver so that is can no longer function normally. Most people suffering from alcoholic cirrhosis have a life expectancy of only one to three years.

Steatohepatitis Symptoms

People suffering from non-alcoholic steatohepatitis can exhibit symptoms like jaundice or yellowing of the skin. They can also exhibit easy bruising, swelling of the lower abdomen, itching skin, poor memory or confusion and vomiting of blood. However, these symptoms can only be observed when NASH is already in its advanced stage.

On the other hand, a person with alcoholic steatohepatitis also exhibits nausea, vomiting, jaundice, swelling and tenderness in the abdomen. However symptoms like fever and encephalopathy is unique to alcoholic steatohepatitis. Encephalopathy is a condition where a person experience confusion, altered consciousness and even coma. Also steatohepatitits can increase blood pressure which may cause sudden bleeding. This can be life threatening when not diagnosed immediately.

Steatohepatitis Grading

Steatohepatits has three grades: mild, moderate and severe. It is graded according to the amount of fat in a single cell. When the accumulation of fat in the cell is big enough to distort the cytoplasm and the nucleus, the event is called macro-vesicular steatosis, while the opposite is called micro-vesicular steatosis. Mild grade steatohepatitis is characterized by the presence of macro-vesicular steatosis. Also the hepatocyte – the liver cell, exhibits occasional swelling. Moderate grade on the other hand, has micro-vesicular and macro-vesicular steatosis. And the hepatocyte exhibits obvious swelling which means the liver is inflamed. In the severe grade, both micro-vesicular and macro-vesicular steatosis is present in more than 66% of the liver cells. Swelling hepatocyte is dominant and the liver exhibits fibrosis and chronic inflammation.

Steatohepatitis Treatment Options

As of now, there is still no definitive treatment for steatohepatitis. Most treatment includes dieting, exercise and lifestyle changes. For non-alcoholic steatohepatitis caused by obesity, diabetes, high cholesterol, high pressure and other metabolic syndrome, the treatment is done by curing the underlying disease. If a person is obese or has high cholesterol, that person is treated with a diet regime and an exercise program. The treatment is designed to lower the fat in the liver and thereby eliminating steatohepatitis. To hasten the removal of fat in the liver, antiglycemic drugs can also be used. NASH is difficult to diagnose and if not treated immediately, can develop into cirrhosis.

The first treatment for alcoholic steatohepatitis is the elimination of alcohol consumption. Most patients diagnosed with alcoholic steatohepatitis are just in the early stage so it is easy to treat. However, if the patient is already in the advanced stage there are no drugs that can cure the disease. Liver transplant is the last treatment option for those who are already in the end stage.

Vomiting After Having Pau D’arco? A Problem and Sharing Experience

Have you heard of pau d’arco tea? Many people have been using it. But, there is a case where one of my friends tried a cup today for the first time and got very sick today (vomiting). So she asked me whether this sort of reaction to pau d’arco or not. She got into a car accident last week and has been out of work with some back/neck injuries so she thinks it could have something to do with that as well.

I will try to answer the problem above with cases and experiences I have from a friend, Linda. She says that from a non-tea drinker, she found Pau d’arco tea to be very nice tasting. Prior to taking the tea she had been doing other things, so that may have had an impact on how she responded to it.

Her naturopath never told her to take it, she did this on her own. Sometimes she would get the feeling that she wanted to gag, but it was a kind of a mild feeling. Then one day out of the clear blue sky she had to use the bathroom real bad. After going she felt much better. This was the only time that this happened while she was on the tea. At her next visit to the doctor she mentioned what had occurred and was told that her system probably was “purging”.

She is sure that she would have experienced vomiting had she not already been on something prior to using this tea. Her whole efforts revolved around keeping the flow coming out of the bottom and not the top. Just the thought of the possibility of what could come out totally horrified her.

Although I don’t have such experience but I can say that it is very rare, not to say none, that I found someone who got vomiting with pau d’arco. Take example my friend. She hasn’t vomited after using pau d’arco, but it does make her nauseated, and makes her stomach/intestines very “growly”.

My other friend says she doesn’t vomit, but it did give her the worst die-off symptoms of any of her antifungals (caprylic acid, oregano oil, garlic and something mysterious from her homeopath), and it tends to give her a mild but persistent migraine (without the nausea, bizarrely) on the days she takes it. It makes her stomach talk as well! But she must confesses that she likes the taste.

3 Foods That Are Bound To Flare Up Your Acid Reflux

The stomach produces and stores acid that helps in food digestion. There are times when this acid flows back from the stomach to the esophagus; a tube that allows the movement of food from the throat to the stomach. Acid reflux occurs when the tube is not strong enough to handle the acid. The common symptoms of acid reflux attacks are indigestion, nausea and heartburn. Heartburn leaves a burning sensation in the chest when it occurs a number of times continually.

The foods that flare up the acid reflux contain acids that worsen the situation. Foods that are spiced or those that hot sauce is added causes flaring up of the acid. Some people would rather eat the spicy food and later get medication for the heartburn. It is also the case when it comes to non-alcoholic beverages and alcohol. People would often prefer getting medication after consumption. With time, the body becomes resistant to the medication and no matter what medicine is taken there is no sign of relief.

Consumption of carbonated drinks, especially soft drinks like soda flares up the acid in the stomach. The biological link between the soft drinks and gastric pressure is that the consumption of soft drinks leads to increased gastric pressure and in turn an increase in reflux occurrence. The drinks also cause gastric distension which can trigger reflux. Other foods, when taken in large quantities flares up the acid. They include cabbages, broccoli, scrambled eggs, yogurt, pork, onions and garlic. These foods require moderation in their consumption.

Fruits can also flare up acid from the stomach. Some of these fruits Include Orange, Lemon, Lemonade, Grape fruit, Cranberry and Tomato. These also include juices extracted from them. This is because they contain acids that easily aggravate severe heartburn. Raw onions are not advisable for people with occurrences of acid reflux. Acid reflux may be flared up by sweet foods with high fat content such as butter, cookies and chocolate. Others are milk shake, sour cream and ice cream, ground beef, chicken gullet and cheese. It can also be flared up by beverages such as coffee, tea, liquor and alcoholic wine.

Change your eating habits. It is easier to exchange one food for another than to have the discomforts that come along with the acid. The amount of food you eat and when you eat it has an impact on the acid produced. Skipping meals for long duration, or eating a lot of food immediately before sleeping may cause a flare up. When you lie down with all that food in your stomach, there are very high chances of the acid flowing from the stomach to the esophagus. It is good if one can avoid all the foods that flare up the acid.

Salt Causes Water Retention

Salt Can Cause Water Retention

One of the most common causes of water retention is too much salt in your diet.   Too much salt in the diet may cause brief episodes of water retention.  By lowering sodium content in your diet you can reduce your water retention, also known as Edema. You shouldn’t completely reduce sodium, but keeping sodium intake at small amounts by avoiding processed foods is often very helpful.  Salt is a natural way to help the body retain water, which it can store and later use; so it’s an important element in diets, but should not be overused.

A normal person can consume small or large quantities of salt in the diet without concern for developing salt depletion or retention however some people retain water more easily. The removal of salt from the body is accomplished by the kidneys. The kidneys have a great capacity to control the amount of salt in the body by changing the amount of salt eliminated in the urine. 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.

Conditions that Affect Salt in the Body

When the blood flow to the kidneys is decreased by an underlying condition such as heart failure, the kidneys react by retaining salt. This occurs because the kidneys perceive that the body needs more fluid to compensate for the decreased blood flow. A kidney disease that impairs the function of the kidneys also triggers the body to retain salt. In both conditions, the amount of salt in the body increases, which causes the patient to retain water and develop edema.

Ways to Reduce Water Retention

People who experience a disturbance in their ability to normally excrete salt may need to be placed on a diet limited in salt, take a diuretic medication or take a natural supplement such as Capisette.  Diuretics work by blocking the re-absorption and retention of salt by the kidneys, thereby increasing the amount of salt and water that is eliminated in the urine.

Dietary Changes that can help reduce Edema:

  • Reduce the amount of table salt that you eat. Ask your doctor if you can use salt substitutes.
  • Reduce the amount of salt that you use while cooking. Cook with other seasonings like lemon juice, vinegar, herbs, and pepper. 
  • Eat small, frequent meals if you have swelling in your stomach or abdomen. 
  • Eat a diet that gives you enough protein, calories, and carbohydrates. Ask your doctor or dietician for help choosing the right combination of foods. 
  • Continue to drink the same amount of water and fluids as normal. Your doctor may have you limit this amount if you have severe edema.

Natural Supplement that Help Reduce Edema – Capisette

Whether your swelling is caused by an underlying condition, or simply from sitting or standing too long on a regular basis, Capisette provides you with an effective means to control your edema.

A variety of nutrients have been shown to address the underlying causes of fluid retention, including those found in Capisette. Capisette goes above and beyond replenishing the system with the nutrients it needs to combat fluid retention. By regulating your body’s delicate fluid balance with Capisette, your body becomes balanced, and subsequently, helps you to feel normal again.

A few ingredients in Capisette are:

  • Potassium – One of the three major electrolytes in your body which may be helpful for edema by regulating the flow of fluids into and out of your tissues and cells.
  • Uva Ursi Ext. – Has been used worldwide as a diuretic while also supporting the kidneys and urinary tract.
  • Dandelion Ext.– Has diuretic properties that may be helpful with edema. It is one of the few diuretics that do not create a potassium deficiency.
  • Horse Chestnut – Studies report that horse chestnut may be able to reduce leakage of fluids from the capillaries caused by edema while promoting overall circulatory health.
  • Buchu Ext. – A mild diuretic.

Would you like to learn more about water retention?

Heart Disease – Can You Lower Your Risk With Systemic Enzymes?

Understanding your risk factor and willing to do necessary actions will lower your chances of having heart disease or attack or other related conditions. Although some of the factors can’t be changed, some of them still can be managed or treated. If you manage them wrong, then there’s a strong possibility that you will put your life in a line of death.

The American Heart Association states that more than 7 million Americans have a heart attack in their lifetime. The heart disease is also no one cause of death among women and men. The treatment for this disease using systemic enzymes is quite a new therapy and can be the one of the best alternative to lower your risk.

These are the risk factors of heart disease that can’t be changed:

  • Aging factor – It is wide open when you are older.
  • Heredity – If one of your family members has it before, there’s a probability you will experience the same conditions.
  • Sex – Men more likely to suffer from heart conditions or disease. Women more likely to have it when they are at post-menopausal.
  • Race – American Indians, African Americans, Mexican Americans, and Native Hawaiians have more chance compare to Caucasians.

These are the ones that can be managed to be your advantages:

  • Smoking habit and tobacco smoke.
  • Hypertension or High blood pressure.
  • Lack of exercises.
  • Obesity and overweight.
  • Diabetes.
  • Heart healthy life style and diet.
  • Stress and anger.
  • Excessive alcohol.
  • High cholesterol.
  • Homocysteine.
  • Triglycerides or fats.
  • C Reactive Protein.

What systemic enzymes do is very amazing. It can help you to lower C Reactive Protein (CRP), the inflammation indicator, which is believed to be a better indicator of heart health or future heart disease. It also seems to help you with high blood pressure (hypertension), and cholesterol issues.

Make sure you pick the right systemic enzymes, because not all of them have the same functions or give you the most benefit and improve your heart health and wellness generally.

Cardiac Sarcoidosis – All You Need to Know and Some Exciting News

Sarcoidosis is an inflammatory autoimmune disease characterized by the formation of granuloma, primarily in the lungs. It can affect any organ in the body.

In this article we will look into sarcoidosis with heart involvement, the basic facts but also the exciting news in the treatment of the disease.

Part 1. Frequency of cardiac sarcoidosis

It was first estimated that five in every hundred patients with sarcoidosis develops heart involvement. But recently, there have been studies that show evidence that the number is actually much higher, even 20 to 30.

Part 2. Survival expectancy in cardiac sarcoidosis

This is something that has generated a lot of opinion clashes. Studies show that the 77 % of sarcoidosis related death is due to heart sarcoidosis. The reported 5-year life expectancy in cardiac sarcoidosis is 40 to 50%.

Part 3. Diagnosis of cardiac sarcoidosis

It is not easy to diagnose cardiac sarcoidosis. The symptoms range from arrhythmias and chest pain and even heart block or heart failure.

Some tests that you can expect if your doctor suspects of cardiac sarcoidosis.

  • Electrocardiography (ECG or EKG)
  • Holter monitoring
  • Nuclear imaging (with thallium)
  • Cardiac positron emission tomography (PET)
  • Heart biopsy
  • Echocardiography
  • Cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)

Part 4. Electrocardiographic abnormalities

Common ECG manifestations of cardiac sarcoidosis are: Rhythm disturbances, premature ventricular contractions and ST-T wave changes.

Part 5: Occurrence of sudden death in heart sarcoidosis

Of all the deaths that happen due to heart sarcoidosis 35 to 65% are sudden deaths due to ventricular tachyarrhythmias.

Part 6: Simulated Myocardial Infarction

This is fairly rare in patients with heart sarcoidosis but is recorded in medical practice.

Part 7. Other manifestations and heart sarcoidosis

Patients with cardiac sarcoidosis may present with an illness resembling acute myocarditis and occasionally patients have ventricular aneurysm.

Part 8. Exciting news in the field of alternative treatment of sarcoidosis research

Heart sarcoidosis and sarcoidosis itself is less a mystery with every day that goes by.The issue with sarcoidosis by now was the lack of knowledge in modern medicine on the causes of the disease. But, lately, some exciting news has been reported on the discoveries of underlying chemical causes. Based on this, a new natural treatment protocol the Aden Protocol, is fashioned which was reported to have an amazing success rate in skin sarcoidosis.

How To Save A Heart Attack Victim Using DRSABCD

DRSABCD is a First Aid acronym to remember the steps to revive a non breathing patient. They refer to Danger, Response, Send (for help), Airway, Breathing, CPR, Defibrillation. These resuscitation guidelines are useful for training purposes. It should be noted that during an emergency, should you forget the individual steps in DRSABCD, any actions taken to revive the patient will be better than none. This includes just compressions or even an older guideline.

[D] Danger

In all first aid scenarios you should assess the risk to your personal safety before anything. Then check the safety of the casualty and finally anyone else nearby.

[R] Response

Feel for a response from the casualty by gently touching them on the hand, cheek or shoulders. Talk to the person. For example “if you can hear me open your eyes or squeeze my hand”. Remember to be respectful. If you don’t get a response send for help.

[S] Send for help

It seems so obvious that a call for help is needed. However, often a first aider becomes so intent on the patient’s injuries that they forget to call for assistance. In some situations it may not be easy to stop treatment to request assistance once first aid has begun.

[A] Airway: Check, Clear and Open

Check inside the casualty’s mouth and see if there is anything that may cause a choking hazard or block the airway. If so, clear it out by sweeping with your hand, roll them onto their side to allow fluids to drain out. Once foreign material is removed from the airway open the patient’s airway with one hand on the patient’s forehead and the other supporting their jaw. Gently tilt their head back and open their mouth. DO NOT open the airway before checking and clearing it. Any foreign matter in the mouth would end up in the airway and potentially blocking it.

[B] Breathing: Look, Listen and Feel for Normal Breathing

In earlier guidelines we would have checked for (any) breath sounds. The problem with this is that there are sometimes abnormal breath sounds that indicate that a patient needs urgent attention. To check for normal breath sounds place a hand on the casualty’s chest and bring your ear down towards their mouth. Look to see if the patient’s chest rises and falls by watching your hand on the person’s chest. Listen for ‘normal’ breath sounds and try to feel their breath against your cheek. If they are breathing normally place them in to the recovery position. If not then commence Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR).

[C] Start CPR

In times gone by it was recommended to give a casualty recovery breaths before starting chest compressions. Under DRSABCD we now go straight in to compressions. Place your hands on the lower part of the patient’s chest. Compressions should be to a depth of 1/3 of the depth of their chest. Use a ratio of two breaths to 30 compressions with 100 compressions per minute. Aim to deliver breaths with minimal disruptions. When breathing for the patient you should tilt the head back gently, pinch the patient’s nose and deliver the breaths. Aim to reproduce the normal rise and fall of the person’s chest.

With DRSABCD there is more emphasis on the compressions. If when you deliver the breaths you cannot get the rise and fall of the chest, go back to compressions rather than mess around airway. At the end of the cycle try to quickly correct the airway. If you can’t, the most likely causes are either poor head position or a blocked airway. If you can’t clear the airway or you are reluctant to give ‘mouth to mouth’ resuscitation stick with compressions only.

[D] Defibrillation

AED’s (Automatic External Defibrillators) are a lot safer than they once were. They can be found more often in places where people gather such as gymnasiums, airports and shopping centres. They are designed for use by average non medically trained people. They also make a significant contribution towards the chances of survival for anyone experiencing a heart attack. To use these devices simply turn them on, follow the recorded instructions and deliver a shock when told to do so.

When attaching an AED during CPR do not disrupt the delivery of CPR if possible. If there are two first aiders, one works around the other first aider to attach the AED while the first continues to provide CPR.

To wrap it up remember these key points about DRSABCD:

  • Any attempt at CPR is better than none at all
  • Remember the ‘S’ as in Send for help
  • We now check for normal breath sounds
  • Focus more on compressions than breathing the patient
  • Use Automatic External Defibrillators where available.

The Resuscitation Council recommends that a CPR refresher course be done every year. But to give a casualty the best possible chances of recovery here is the complete DRSABCD protocol broken down in full detail.

A Paradoxical Double Life

For thirteen years, in the late nineteenth century, Clarence King lived a paradoxical double life, one as a bachelor white man and one as a married black man. The first question that comes to one’s mind is, “How is that possible?”

During the late nineteenth century, after the abolition of slavery, a number of laws were passed clearly defining which persons were black. Anyone with one black great-grandparent was considered to be a black person; one’s skin color did not matter and many light-skinned black people were able to pass themselves off as white people. Thus, in the late 1880s, blue-eyed, blond-haired, Clarence King declared himself a black person, working as a Pullman porter, when he met and was attracted to Ada Copeland, a black woman.

Martha Sandweiss, a noted historian who wrote Passing Strange, brings to life the remarkable story of two people’s diabolical lives joined together in a common-law marriage for thirteen years. This is the story of how Clarence King invented and lived a secret life for those thirteen years in order to solve his emotional need to love and be loved by a black woman.

Clarence King, born in 1842, was Yale-educated and one of the most admired men of his time, having achieved fame as an explorer and surveyor of the western part of the U.S. He was a man with many wealthy friends, one of which described him as “…the best and the brightest man of his generation.” His social life centered on numerous club memberships; he was a unique individual who could easily make friends and feel comfortable with anyone, anywhere. At night, unbeknownst to his friends, he often liked to go to “slumming,”-walking, exploring and talking with people in poverty-stricken, usually black, neighborhoods.

Ada Copeland, born around 1860, was not only a black woman; she was an ex-slave. When she met Clarence King, she met “James Todd, a black Pullman porter.” Clarence King had taken full advantage of the laws regarding the definition of a “black” person; he claimed African descent, even though it was not true. During the late 1880s it was relatively easy for someone, such as Clarence King, to adopt a secret life. “One could shed one’s personal history…to emerge new with a different name, an invented past, an imagined story…”

Throughout the thirteen years of their marriage, Clarence King lived a deceptive life, keeping his secret not only from his friends but also from his wife, Ada. Together they had five children. It was only when Clarence King was away from his family and dying of tuberculosis in an Arizona hospital did he write to Ada revealing his true identity and explaining to her he was leaving a trust fund for her and the children.

When “James Todd” died in 1901, Ada was left to raise four small children. For the next thirty years, Ada King maneuvered and struggled through the legal system to obtain access to the trust fund that Clarence King said he left for her and the children. Finally, after thirty years, her case went to trial and Clarance King’s deceptive double life became public knowledge. Ada King died in 1964 at the age of 103.

Passing Strange by Martha Sandweiss, 2009, 370 pages. Ms. Sandweiss is a professor of history at Princeton University. Penguin Group Publishing, 375 Hudson Street, New York, New York,10014.