What Are Cryptic Tonsils?

You might think that “cryptic tonsils” are a type of tonsils. But they’re not. Rather, they’re a condition that occurs when your tonsils happen to have an unusual amount of folds.

Purpose of Tonsils

The purpose of your tonsils is to protect your body from bacterial and viral invasions by filtering things that pass through the nose and mouth before they may enter the body. When things function well, your tonsils capture foreign invading infections and prevent them from entering your body. When things don’t work well, your tonsils may instead capture food, dead bacteria, and accumulated mucous deposits.

The problems with this might not seem obvious initially; however, the problems only become significant when the trapped debris inflame your tonsils. This can cause them to become enlarged, restricting your breathing and making swallowing painful.

The Problem with Cryptic Tonsils

It should now be clear why cryptic tonsils can be a problem. Since they contain so many folds, they trap much, much more debris than normal tonsils; and this debris has the potentially inflame the tonsils. If this inflammation is persistent, the tonsils may even need to be removed.

Treatment

The primary problem is that your tonsils contain too many folds. This means that applying an antibiotic to reduce inflammation is only a temporary solution. In the future, your tonsils are likely to become inflamed once again, since they are likely to capture more food.

Other temporary solutions involve cleaning the tonsil crypts to prevent frequent inflammation. This may require you to take a q-tip or a spoon to brush the crypts clean and remove any food or debris.

Conclusion

If you constantly find that your tonsils are becoming inflamed, that’s a clear sign that your tonsils have too many folds; however, this, in itself, is not sufficient evidence to proceed with a tonsillectomy. Instead, you will want to consult with your ENT physician to determine whether or not the folds are truly the problem. If they are, then it may be time to consider getting your cryptic tonsils removed.

Can High Triglycerides Lead to Liver Cancer?

One of the many dangers of high triglycerides is that it is one of five risk factors that can lead to metabolic syndrome. It is well-established that this syndrome increases the risk of developing diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Now a recent study from the National Cancer Institute has just discovered a possible link between this syndrome and liver cancer.

The discovery of the connection between metabolic syndrome and liver cancer is very important because this information may help to stop the rise of this deadly cancer. In this article, we will look more closely at the relationship between elevated triglycerides, metabolic syndrome and liver cancer.

The Rise of High Triglyceride Levels in America

Triglyceride levels have been on the rise for the past 30 years. Currently, approximately one-third, or 31%, of Americans have elevated triglyceride levels, which are defined as levels of more than 150 mg/dl. Alarmingly, levels continue to rise, especially among young adults. Consistent with the rise of triglycerides are the increased rates of obesity and diabetes at younger ages. Also on the increase is the incidence of metabolic syndrome, which is now affecting about 34% of Americans.

The Five Factors of Metabolic Syndrome

This syndrome is a combination of at least three out of five medical conditions, which are:

1. High blood pressure

2. Low levels of ‘good’ cholesterol

3. High triglycerides

4. High blood sugar levels

5. A large waistline, also known as “central obesity”

There are other names for metabolic syndrome, which include syndrome X, insulin resistance syndrome, metabolic syndrome X and cardio-metabolic syndrome.

Research studies have shown a definite connection between elevated triglycerides, syndrome X and the development of diseases and conditions such as Type 2 diabetes, heart and vascular diseases, and fatty liver. Research also shows that the incidence of syndrome X has risen over 10% since 1988.

Metabolic Syndrome and Liver Cancer

In its recent study, the National Cancer Institute discovered that people who have this insulin-resistant syndrome may be more likely to develop liver cancer. The study examined the medical histories of people diagnosed with this type of cancer. The data was then compared to the medical histories of healthy people. The results? More than 37% of those with the cancer had pre-existing syndrome X compared to 17.1% of healthy people with the syndrome.

Sadly, along with the rise of high triglycerides, and the increase in cases of metabolic syndrome, liver cancer is also on the rise and has been rapidly rising since the 1980’s. This cancer is a serious and deadly cancer with only 10% surviving more than 5 years after diagnosis.

Preventing Liver Cancer

Considering the correlation between high triglycerides, metabolic syndrome and liver cancer, it is quite possible to conclude that some cases of liver cancer may be prevented if the syndrome is reversed through the control of the five medical conditions that lead to it. Each of these five medical conditions has been effectively controlled with diet and lifestyle changes.

Fortunately, whether you are battling high blood pressure, high blood sugar, high cholesterol, high triglycerides, or a bulging waistline, the same diet and lifestyle changes can work for all of them.

Five Complications of Canine Diabetes – Is Your Dog at Risk?

Has your pet been diagnosed with canine diabetes? Is so, you need to know about these complications that often go along with diabetes in dogs. Diabetes is a complex disease, and the more information you have, the better you’ll be able to care for your companion.

1. Cataracts In Dogs

It’s a sad fact that the vast majority of canine diabetics will develop cataracts within a year of being diagnosed. The lenses of his eyes will gradually become cloudy and opaque, which causes him to lose his vision. This is due to high blood glucose levels that affect every organ in his body.

Once your pet’s blood sugar levels are stabilized, which usually takes at least three months, cataract surgery is an option. Most dogs do quite well with the surgery and regain their vision.

2. Uveitis And Glaucoma

Uveitis is caused when the lenses in the eyes leak protein into the eyeball, which causes severe inflammation. This is a complication of cataracts. It must be treated right away, or it can progress into glaucoma, which causes permanent vision loss. A detached retina can occur, too.

Unfortunately, if a pet develops uveitis, cataract surgery isn’t an option any more, since there is a much higher chance of complications.

3. Increased Susceptibility To Infections

Your pet may be subject to recurring infections. It’s a vicious cycle; in a nutshell, high blood glucose levels provide plenty of food for bacteria, and then higher levels of bacteria cause higher blood sugar levels.

Urinary tract infections, prostrate infections, pneumonia, and skin conditions are commonly seen in dogs with diabetes. It’s essential to monitor your pet’s health to keep an infection from gaining a foothold.

4. Diabetic Neuropathy

This complication is a lot more common in cats, but it can happen in dogs, too. In fact, this is sometimes the first symptom of a diabetic canine that the owner notices. If your companion’s back legs seem to be getting weak, it might not be because he’s getting older. He could have diabetes in dogs.

The good news is that, in dogs, this condition is usually reversible once the blood sugar levels are normalized.

5. Diabetic Ketoacidosis In Dogs

This is a severe, life-threatening complication that results from high blood sugar levels. It’s important for all dog owners to know the symptoms of canine diabetes so this doesn’t happen to their pets.

Symptoms include:

  • Excessive thirst
  • Frequent urination
  • Losing weight even though he’s eating ravenously
  • Sudden blindness
  • Weakness
  • Vomiting and dehydration
  • Breath smells like acetone (similar to nail polish remover)

A dog with diabetes can develop ketoacidosis very quickly, in as little as a week. It can be fatal, but most canines will survive with the proper treatment.

The Best Cure Is Prevention

Diabetes in dogs can be prevented. The best way to do this is by keeping your pet’s weight under control. Feed him a high-fiber, low-fat diet, and cut out the treats and table scraps.

Regular exercise is an excellent way to keep his blood sugar levels under control. A long walk, morning and evening, will help to keep him in shape, and burn off extra calories as well.

Studies have shown that certain herbs and dietary supplements found in natural remedies for dogs can help to control blood sugar levels. Chromium is essential for this reason, but sadly, most diets don’t contain enough of this mineral.

Don’t wait any longer to protect your pet from this dread disease. With diet, exercise, and herbs for dogs, you can prevent canine diabetes.

Obesity Statistics – The Scary Facts That We Can’t Ignore

Nearly two thirds of Americans are considered overweight or obese. Obesity numbers have risen from 15 percent of our population to 31 percent in only 20 years. This means that 93 million Americans are obese. Even more alarming is the fact that 17% or over 9 million US children over the age of 6 are considered to be overweight. What effect does this have on our society? This article will examine the devastating effects on our health, skyrocketing employer and insurance costs, and even the effects on our national security.

Most of us aren’t aware that obesity causes more medical problems than heavy smoking or alcohol consumption. Carrying all that extra weight is like adding 20 of age and can lead to major health problems including high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, sleep apnea, heart disease, stroke, and increased risk of breast, colon, and prostate cancer. It may also lead to neurological disorders, asthma, and risky pregnancies. In addition, obese individuals are resorting to more drastic measures with elective surgeries like stomach bands or gastric bypass, which carry their own risks of infection, hemorrhage, and hernias. Right now the CDC says 300,000 annual deaths are attributed to obesity but the number could be much higher.

The cost to our nation’s employers is astounding. Medical insurance costs are 3 times higher than they were in 1990 and 27 percent of this increase is due to obesity. Obese patients have 77 percent higher medication expenses and 36 percent higher inpatient and outpatient treatment costs. And it’s not just health insurance costs that are affecting employers. Obesity resulted in 39 million missed work days and disability payments due to obesity average $8,720 per case per year. The total cost of obesity in 2000 in America was $117 million and you can imagine how much that figure has grown in the 10 years since 2000.

Some military leaders are now saying that obesity is affecting our national security too. Many applicants to all four branches of the services aged 17 to 24, in fact 27%, are rejected because of obesity. This is the leading reason young people aren’t allowed to serve, more than rejections due to not completing high school or having a criminal record. These facts not only reduce our ability to defend ourselves overseas, but have an impact on our ability to defend ourselves against domestic terrorism and our to recover from natural disasters. Retired generals and admirals are asking Congress for $1 million in new funding to improve our school nutrition to help reverse the trend of childhood obesity that is having such a tremendous impact on our national security.

Solving our national epidemic of obesity will not be easy but we can no longer afford to ignore the scary facts. The devastating effect on our health and rising costs to our society compel us to change our lifestyle. If we don’t, the effects on our families, economy, and national security will be devastating and will threaten to jeopardize our fundamental way of life.

How to Remove Gout Crystals Naturally Using Water

Gout crystals (uric acid crystals) cause excruciating pain. Here, as well as the causes of gout, you’ll learn how to remove gout crystals naturally using water.

WHAT ARE GOUT CRYSTALS?

Gout crystals are crystals of uric acid that form in your joints, tendons and surrounding tissue when you have high uric acid levels in your blood.

Your body considers them as ‘foreign’ matter and so sets up its normal inflammatory reaction. It’s your body’s reaction to these crystals that causes your symptoms of gout; swelling, redness, stiffness, inflammation, and, excruciating pain.

WHERE DOES URIC ACID COME FROM?

Uric acid is actually a byproduct of the breakdown of purines in your body. These are chemical compounds that exist in your body’s cell structure and in the foods you consume.

They are extremely important to you because they help convert genes to protein, food to energy, aid muscle contraction, get rid of excess nitrogen from your cells, and protect them from cancer causing agents.

During their process, purines breakdown completely and uric acid is one of the byproducts.

WHAT CAUSES HIGH URIC ACID?

Normally, your kidneys process the uric acid produced by purines, retain sufficient for your body’s needs and then excrete excess waste out of your body via urine.

High uric acid levels usually occur when your kidneys can’t handle normal acid production levels, or, the purines are producing too much acid for your kidneys to deal with.

With high acid levels there is a much greater chance of gout crystals forming and causing a gout attack.

HOW CAN I REMOVE GOUT CRYSTALS NATURALLY?

More and more gout sufferers are turning to natural ways to get rid of gout crystals and their symptoms. They just don’t like the nasty side effects of drug-based medications, e.g. nausea, vomiting, stomach cramps, diarrhea, ulcers, bleeding, etc.

Natural home remedies can reduce inflammation, relieve gout pain, and, help neutralize and remove gout crystals from your body.

One of the most effective in removing gout crystals is water! Yes, simple, clean water can be very effective in eliminating your gout crystals…

REMOVING GOUT CRYSTALS BY DRINKING LOTS OF WATER

Crystals find it harder to form when your body is properly hydrated. And most of us just aren’t hydrated enough in our everyday lives.

So by drinking lots of water everyday you are helping to prevent the crystals forming, and, helping your kidneys to flush excess uric acid from your body.

You should drink at the very least, 12 x 8 ounce glasses of water every single day. But don’t binge two or three times a day, drink little and often regularly throughout the day for best effect.

OTHER ISSUES CONCERNING YOUR GOUT

No matter how effective the water remedy is, there are a host of other issues that you need to address. In order to, not only remove your gout attack symptoms, but to prevent recurring gout attacks that can lead to permanent joint damage and potential kidney problems.

You need to investigate and consider things like your weight, diet (purines in food), lifestyle habits, medications, underlying medical conditions, family history, etc.

Men’s Health Alert – Penile Rash, Bumps and Spots

Penile rash symptoms are understandably a cause for concern for most men. Even men who are not sexually active may develop spots, bumps and penis rash that may itch, flake, and spread to other parts of the genital area. Daily penis care with gentle cleansers and penis-specific vitamins and minerals may help to prevent minor skin rashes on the penis and soothe irritated skin. In addition, men should be aware of penis symptoms that may require medical attention.

Penis rash symptoms that all men should watch for

The following symptoms can be caused by a variety of different types of penile skin conditions. In most cases, these are minor, and the redness, swelling and rash can be resolved through good hygiene and nutrient support for the skin.

Symptom: Small bumps around the crown of the penis

Possible Causes:

· Penile Papules – This condition, which mainly affects uncircumcised men, presents as a series of small, dome-like bumps that may be flesh-colored or red. They are generally not painful and do not require any treatment beyond normal personal hygiene. Keeping the skin well-moisturized and supplying the area with antioxidants and skin care nutrients such as vitamin A can help to keep away bacteria and other microorganisms that may cause penis rash under the foreskin.

Symptom: Itchy, red penis rash that spreads and/or flakes

Possible Causes:

· Psoriasis- This skin reaction occurs on other parts of the body and may affect the penis skin, as well. Symptoms include red patches of skin and may be accompanied by inflammation. Flaking and itching may also occur, and peeling the skin that flakes away may cause slight bleeding. Vitamin A treatments are often recommended by dermatologists for treating all types of psoriasis.

· Contact dermatitis- Skin allergies and sensitivities to substances ranging from latex (found in condoms), detergents and deodorants, and poison ivy or poison oak can cause a rash on the penis. Avoiding materials known to cause skin reactions is the number one solution for avoiding contact dermatitis. To soothe itchy, reddened and inflamed skin, penis crèmes containing vitamins such as A, C, D and E are generally effective.

· Fungal infections – Fungal infections, including Candida yeast and the condition commonly known as “jock itch” are found nearly everywhere, especially in gym locker rooms and other areas that are warm, moist, and frequented by large numbers of people. These can cause redness, a spreading rash, and severe itching. Keeping the groin area clean and dry and treating the skin with healing vitamins C and D may help to prevent the development of fungal infections.

Symptom: Small, red bumps at the base of the penis

Possible Causes:

· Bacterial infections- As with fungal infections, the genital area is a prime breeding ground for bacteria that can cause skin infections that may be accompanied by rash and swelling. Vitamin A, which works as a natural antibacterial, can help to eliminate harmful bacteria that can cause penis rash and foul odors.

· Shaving- Men who shave the hair around the penis may develop reddened bumps. These are actually caused by bacteria that invade the follicles following shaving. Treating the skin with a nutrient formula containing vitamin A can help to eliminate bacteria, while vitamins C, B5 and D can speed healing.

Symptom: Red, itchy rash and swelling on the head of the penis

Possible Causes:

· Balanitis- This common penis rash condition is generally caused by poor hygiene and is more common in uncircumcised men. Cleaning the area thoroughly and keeping the skin well-oxygenated through the use of vitamin C may be effective in preventing the swelling and itching that accompany balanitis, while natural moisturizers such as shea butter can help to calm irritated skin.

All men should remember that penile rash symptoms that are accompanied by a discharge, bleeding, or flu-like symptoms (such as fever, headache, cough, and fatigue), as well as rashes on the penis that do not show signs of healing within a few days, should be seen immediately by a doctor, as they may indicate a more serious condition.

Treating and preventing penile rash

Keeping the genital area clean and wearing loose-fitting, comfortable fabrics can help to prevent numerous penis skin problems, including rash, itching, and discomfort. In addition, treating the area daily with a penis health formula (most health professionals recommend Man1 Man Oil) containing essential skin nutrients and moisturizers can boost the disease-fighting ability of the penile skin and soothe the itching and burning caused by various types of penis rash.

Causes of Very Itchy Skin – Why is My Skin So Itchy?

Have you ever asked yourself; why is my skin so itchy and what are the causes of very itchy skin? If you suffer from chronic itchy skin then you have probably asked yourself this question many times. During the duration of this article several different causes of very itchy skin will be explored;

When it comes to itchy skin and rashes the most likely cause could be an exposure to an irritant such as the dyes in your clothing, soaps or detergents that you use or it could be due to hard water. Another more common likely cause would be a fungal infection such as the oils from plants like poison oak, sumac, or ivy, insect bites or stings. If you have previously ruled one of these common causes out then there could be a new irritant that is causing your reaction; at that time it is best to take a look at your current environment.

If anything new was added or something old was changed in your environment such as the brand of soap you use, the type of shampoo, the type of perfume or cologne, or even a new air freshener or even new clothes can be the cause of the irritation making your skin itch or swell with a rash. Sometimes the stress of moving to a new job or home, or the stress over money matters can cause itchy skin.

There are also many different chemicals or metals that can cause skin irritation which causes rashes or the skin to become dry and very itchy; such chemicals as the chlorine in a swimming pool during the summer months, the traces of lead in the drinking water, and general environmental toxins if you visit or move to a new location in the world.

With many different things present in the air, the ground, and around one’s home, skin irritations cannot always be avoided, yet they don’t have to rule your life either. There are a few different ways to help control dry itching skin and rashes; these ways include taking an oral antihistamine such as Benadryl or even a cortisone cream or ointment such as Cortisone 10, even a calamine lotion can be spread over the rash or the itchy skin to cool and soothe the itching.

If the suspected irritant is something that you use daily such as soaps, detergents, cleaning chemicals, air fresheners, then the easy way to deal with those items is to dispose of them properly so that they do not continued their prolonged irritations. If the problem lies in the water, then an alternative is to use drinking water for all your drinking and cooking needs, and installing a shower filter for bathing, to eliminate that irritant to your skin.

As you can see there are many different causes to skin irritation that leads to very itchy skin and rashes; but as long as you are able to figure out what causes the problems to occur, you can easily eliminate them from your life. This will allow your life to return to some semblance of normalcy without the constant chronic itching and scratching of, dry flaky skin.

Psoriasis Treatment and Recovery – Important Information

Psoriasis, a skin condition that develops in about three percent of the human population, can be treated in a number of ways. When properly looked after and treated, a person with psoriasis can be well on his or her way to a road of recovery. Before treatment, someone with psoriasis must be diagnosed with how severe of a case it is.

Usually, someone with a mild case of psoriasis will be prescribed some skin ointments or creams to help clear it up. If your skin is especially dry, you may need to have a medicated cream applied to the affected area. The two most common topical applications used for this condition are Topicort and Anthralin. This treatment for psoriasis is the most effective for the majority of common mild cases.

For the few people who do have moderate cases of this skin condition, doctors typically recommend phototherapy as the most effective precursor to psoriasis recovery. Since this kind of therapy does involve ultra violet light working in harmony with a special cream called psoralen to stop the condition from worsening, people undergoing this treatment sometimes develop side effects. While this method does work for medium to moderate cases, some might experience tiredness, headaches, itchy skin or nauseous feelings. It’s for this reason why is not a good idea to do phototherapy for long periods of time. For a better chance at weaning yourself off of this treatment, try to get some good old diet and exercise into your schedule.

The more severe cases are usually treated with FDA approved techniques. Stelara and Humira are drugs that doctors can administer to those with moderate to severe cases. If you have psoriasis on your head, there is one ointment you’re able to use, and that is called Taclonex Scalp. Xtrac Velocity, used to treat the more severe cases is a much stronger laser system than the one used to treat moderate psoriasis. Usually the Stelera and the Humira are prescribed first, and if those don’t work, then the Talconex and Laser treatment are administered. This is to minimize the amount of side effects one can obtain.

Although there is no cure for psoriasis, it will be most beneficial for you to complement any treatment you’re undergoing with diet and exercise. Eat foods rich in vitamins that help the skin such as Vitamin E, Vitamin D and Omega 3 Fatty Acids. With this important information under your belt, you will ultimately be able to conquer this condition and begin your path to psoriasis recovery.

Fungus Spores and Nail Fungus

What’s the connection between fungus spores and nail fungus? Fungi that are actively growing will eventually produce spores – tiny reproductive stages that break away from the plant and spread to new places on air currents, in water, and on living things that move about. Most people have seen fungal spores: perhaps you’ve seen a green dusty powder inside the bag of a loaf of bread that’s gone moldy, or noticed that portobello mushrooms leave a black coating on your cutting board. These substances are actually large numbers of spores (a single spore is microscopic so you can’t see it – by the time they become visible there are millions.)

It’s important to understand that most fungi produce spores of one find or another – infectious fungal spores, that is, those that can cause infection in people, only come from a few species. Portobello mushroom spores, and those of most other environmental species will not hurt you (though it’s probably not a good idea to casually inhale spores of any fungus, for various reasons). There is only a connection between fungus spores and nail fungus infection when the spores are from one of fungi that can grow in keratin, the protein that is common in nails, hair, and skin.

Infectious fungal spores are produced by fungi growing in infected toenails and fingernails. They are dispersed in the environment when bits of nail and skin flake off, on nail clippers and instruments used to trim and file nails, in nail clippings, in shoes and socks, in water, and when the afflicted person walks about with bare feet. When you realize that a small colony of fungus can produce millions of spores, it’s easier to understand how the infection can spread readily from one nail to another, on shared clothing and grooming instruments, and in public swimming areas. An infection produces fungus spores and nail fungus spreads.

Most cases of fungal nail infection are caused by a few species of dermatophytes – fungi that are adapted to utilize keratin as a nutrient source. They spread from person to person and from animal to person by means of fungus spores and nail fungus infection is not the only problem they cause: infections of the skin and hair are generally caused by the same species. A few environmental fungi, i.e. species that normally live in nature, deriving nutrients from decaying organic material, can also produce infectious fungal spores that can grow in nails, but not skin or hair. Fortunately, the species involved in any particular infection does not generally matter when it comes to treatment of onychomycosis.

Allergies to Horses

Some people are allergic to horses. Depending on the type of allergy, this can result in various symptoms: 

  • Itchy eyes, nose or skin
  • Hives or rashes
  • Watery eyes
  • Sneezing or coughing
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Asthma attacks

When first being exposed to horses, one should carefully check if one has an allergic reaction. Special care should be taken with anyone who suffers from asthma as a horse allergy can trigger a asthmatic attack, which in the most severe cases have been fatal. Consequently, if one has an asthma problem, one should take precautions when first exposed to horses (including having an inhaler and other asthma treatments to hand) and one should monitor asthmatic children when first exposed to horses.

The most common cause of allergies to horses is their dander. Dander is bits of skin which has flaked off (like dandruff) and bits of hair. Another common cause is horse mites (or rather, their droppings). One can also be allergic to horse salvia or urine.

It is possible to have an allergic reaction without being near a horse, through indirect contact. For example, dander and mite droppings can be rubbed off onto tack and clothing (in particular, they adhere to rugs, blankets and clothing), so contact with these items can trigger a horse allergy. There are a number of cases where one family member rides horses, resulting in another family member having allergic reactions or asthma due to exposure to clothing or equipment which is brought back home by the horse rider. In such cases, one should take appropriate preventive steps (e.g. have the rider change clothing before coming home, wipe down tack before bringing it into the house, etc.). Likewise, entering a barn or other enclosed area where horses have recently been can result in a reaction even if the horses are not present at the moment.

Treatment

Horse allergies can be treated in the same way as other allergies: avoidance if possible, otherwise medications such anti-histamines or corticosteroids, or desensitizing treatment. The various treatment options should be discussed with your doctor. 

If one cannot easily avoid being around horses, one may wish to be tested to determine which aspect of the horse one is allergic too, as this will help in determining how to best manage the allergic condition:

  • In the case of the allergy being caused by dander (rather than other aspects of the horse), many people report that the ‘curly horse’ breeds do not cause a reaction (apparently they produce little dander), so they are able to ride these breeds. 
  • In the case that one is allergic to horse mites, treatment of the horse and its box against mites may reduce the allergic reaction to acceptable levels.
  • In the case of allergy to urine, avoiding contaminated areas (e.g. the horse’s box) and washing the horse down (in case it has rolled in its box) may allow one to continue to be around horses without suffering from the associated allergy.
  • In any case, knowing the exact cause of the horse allergy may allow one to minimise exposure to this particular aspect and thereby continue to be around horses.

5 Signs and Symptoms of Folic Acid Deficiency

Folic Acid is one of your body’s essential nutrients! It is important for everything from brain function to cardiovascular health. Folic Acid deficiency is the most common deficiency of any of the B vitamins. It also works along with vitamin B-12 for formation of red blood cells.

Some of the signs and symptoms you would want to look out for would include:

oIrritability or Depression- Because of folic acids importance in your central nervous system you may experience symptoms such as irritability, sluggishness, forgetfulness, or depression.

oHigh Homocysteine Levels- Along with other B-Vitamins, folic acid works to lower homocysteine levels. People with high homocysteine levels have been shown to have a higher increase in cardiovascular events such as heart attacks.

oBirth Defects and Miscarriage- Folic acid is critical in the development of your fetus. Folic acid supplements are recommended to women that are pregnant or trying to get pregnant.

oSome Cancers- Some cancers have been associated with abnormally low levels of folic acid.

oDiarrhea and loss of appetite- Many vitamin deficiencies have been linked to gastrointestinal complaints.

It is very important to identify why your body may be deficient in folic acid!

Are you eating enough foods that are rich in folic acid, such as spinach and other green leafy vegetables, soybeans, salmon, or orange juice?

Are you taking any prescription or over the counter drug that has been shown to either lower folic acid levels, or increase your bodies need for folic acid such as oral contraceptives, aspirin or other anti-inflammatory drugs, antacids such as Zantac, Pepcid or Tagamet, or metformin for diabetes?

Depression: The Most Effective Treatment

When we read about effective treatments for a common psychological and medical condition like depression, we are always tempted to expect reviews and discussions of different prescription medications. Antidepressants and other depression related drugs are currently among the most prescribed drugs. This implies that despite the increasing affluence, comfort and better living standards seen today in the developed world, many people are still not happy with their lives. Moreover, considering the fact that the increasing reliance on medication and other medical procedures have not reduced the prevalence of chronic depression in the population; it is safe to assert that there are better and more effective ways of treating depression. This article intends to look at one of such effective treatment for depression.

For a better appreciation of the depression treatment that will be discussed in this article, it is important to look at the causes of depression in most people. Most people erroneously believe that depression is mainly caused by a fault with the nervous system, a traumatic or sad event that happens in one’s life. Though some cases of depression result from chemical imbalances in the body or problems with the nervous and coordination system of the body; in most cases, this belief is not correct.

It is extraordinary to note that depression, in most people, is as a result of conflict between the conscious and unconscious mind. The past events and experiences of our lives, which are presumed forgotten, are usually stored in the unconscious mind. When memories from this part of the mind begin to take over an individual’s consciousness, it creates a kind of fog over the mind, causing the confusion and anxiety that characterizes depression. Psychologists have come to realize that the unconscious mind have a great impact on an individual’s quality of life. This is one of the reasons why depression is a very difficult condition to diagnose. It does not present with physical signs or symptoms because the condition does not affect the physical body.

From the above, it is only reasonable to suggest that the best and most effective treatment for depression should begin with the mind. Within every person suffering from depression, is the ability and resources effectively to treat the condition. Unfortunately, the medical and pharmaceutical have taught us otherwise.

For a start, creating a positive attitude is the most effective prevention and treatment for depression. A sense of humor, optimism and a positive attitude can break through the worst cases of depression. Humor releases substances into the blood that relax the body and mind. Whereas a positive and optimistic attitude creates a clear mind devoid of unnecessary worries and anxieties. This makes it easy to differentiate between the present and what is being imported from the past.

It is also important to take note of every thought that crosses the mind. This requires a bit of mental and conscious effort, especially at the outset. However, it will be worth the stress. Taking stock of every thought that comes to mind enables you to thrash out necessary mental assignments and discard irrelevant thoughts instead of allowing them to clog the mind, causing anxiety, unnecessary worry and then depression.

Of course, there are cases of depression that results from chemical or hormonal imbalance in the body; there are also cases of chronic depression that no amount of positive attitude can cure. Notwithstanding that, the mind is still the most effective treatment for depression. Creating a positive and optimistic attitude, learning to free the mind of unnecessary and irrelevant thoughts, living for the moment, without worrying about today or yesterday, regular exercise and a healthy diet constitute the most effective depression treatment you can find anywhere.

Fear, Phobias, Anxiety and Panic Attacks

Fear is our defense mechanism against danger. It is a healthy reaction that protects organisms from their enemies and from hostile conditions of the environment. Without fear, we would not have any protection from danger.

However, exaggerated fear or unexplainable fears are problematic and lead to despair and craziness.

Humans are mentally ill from birth, since the very violent, cruel and immoral anti-conscience is inherent in all humans. The conscious part of the human conscience that respects human values and controls human behavior is selfish, one-sided and underdeveloped. It easily becomes a puppet of the anti-conscience, which is constantly trying to destroy the human side.

Therefore, the normal and protective function of fear becomes a disease, since this fear is either exaggerated or unexplainable.

Fear can become panic or be transformed into a phobia.

Let’s examine the definitions given to this term by http://www.dictionary.com so that we may understand what fear really means.

-noun

1. a distressing emotion aroused by impending danger, evil, pain, etc., whether the threat is real or imagined; the feeling or condition of being afraid.

2. a specific instance of or propensity for such a feeling: an abnormal fear of heights.

3. concern or anxiety; solicitude: a fear for someone’s safety.

4. reverential awe, esp. toward God.

5. that which causes a feeling of being afraid; that of which a person is afraid: Cancer is a common fear.

-verb (used with object)

6. to regard with fear; be afraid of.

7. to have reverential awe of.

8. Archaic. to experience fear in (oneself).

-verb (used without object)

9. to have fear; be afraid.

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While normal fear is our defense against danger, anxiety is the fear that something bad might happen; it is not the fear of something that is dangerous. Therefore, anxiety is the fear of the future, fear of the conditions of life, unexpected problems; in other words, the fear provoked by one’s mind suppositions and assumptions.

Phobias are manic fears concerning certain objects, places or people. They have an unexplained character. However, with my simplified version of Carl Jung’s method we can understand that phobias are caused by the unconscious as a punishment for the mistakes of our absurd conscience, which is one-sided and underdeveloped.

You can find more information about phobias in my article “Phobias Mystery Revealed-The Fear Factor.”

The human conscience is negative because it is selfish and ignorant, even though it is not as evil as the anti-conscience. Real goodness can be found only in the unconscious side of the human psychic sphere, that doesn’t belong to the human being but has a different and older origin. Its sanctity and wisdom are beyond any doubt and anyone can recognize them. Its function in the psychic sphere is always protective, so the phobias it causes attempt to save the human conscience from craziness.

Phobias belong to a different type; they are not fears like anxiety and panic, even though someone may end up with agoraphobia (fear of closed, crowded places) after many panic attacks.

Anxiety and panic attacks are caused by the anti-conscience because these fears come from assumptions, whereas phobia is the fear of specific objects, people or places.

The psychotherapy to treat anxiety, panic and phobias is my simplified version of Carl Jung’s method of dream interpretation.

We can use words and associations made by the patients as well as their drawings, which can be interpreted like dreams, in order to understand their psychic problem and its cure.

Anxiety and phobias can easily be cured while panic attacks require longer duration of psychotherapy, but they can be surely cured as well.

Anxiety, Panic and the Imagination

When I started getting anxiety and panic attacks, at first I thought that I might die. I did not know what was happening to me. The first thing I thought of when having a panic attack was to fight back and stop it before it stops me right here and now. It wasn’t until I got some professional help that I realized the fact that I was in no physical danger. That is when I found out that I was experiencing panic attacks.

So I took the pills and did the breathing exercises and all the other things that the doctor prescribed to HELP ME COPE with my affliction. All this stuff worked to a certain extent. After a few years of therapy and pills, it seemed like I had reached a plateau and all that stuff wasn’t really curing anything.

Now the next thing that I did is in no way meant to be taken as advise or a recommendation of any kind to stop seeing your doctor or go off your medication, but that is exactly what I did. It has been a number of years now since I took matters into my own hands and started researching anxiety and panic attacks. Again, this is what I felt that I had to do and I DO NOT recommend it to anyone else.

There is a lot of good information out there. But what it all boils down to is that anxiety can start the onset of a panic attack. The panic attack thrives on fear. Fear is generated and grows from the imagination. Does this make sense to you? Well it did to me so I kept looking for answers.

Here is what I figured out. Instead of fighting what your body is sensing, acknowledge it and embrace it. What ever your body is doing during the attack, you tell it “give me more”. When you know what is happening and where it’s coming from, you also know that it can’t hurt you. Just remember what caused the attack – anxiety, panic and the imagination. Take the imagination out and you remove the fear, no fear, no panic, no panic, nothing to feel anxious about.

Insomnia Relates to Anxiety, Constipation and Dry Skin According To Ayurveda

It is estimated fifteen to twenty million americans struggle with insomnia which may lead to headaches, dry skin,constipation,anxiety, depression and body pain.

The less sleep you get, the less well you are able to deal with stress and the more difficult it is to fall or stay asleep. Chronic insomnia may also result from chronic anxiety, fear, tension, depression, and other psychological problems, drug abuse and dependence (including sleeping pills), or other chronic illness that causes nighttime symptoms of pain and distress.

In natural-medicine systems such as Ayurveda, sleep is one of the important components a person needs to restore and maintain physical and mental health. New studies show that chronic sleep deprivation, which may be due to insomnia, affects the immune system and our ability to stay alert and concentrate. Inadequate sleep may be responsible for poor productivity, irritability, and a large portion of accidents on the road, on the job, and at work.

If you are questioning the adequacy of your sleep, ask yourself, Do I need an alarm clock to wake up every morning? If so, you are not getting adequate sleep. Do you wake up refreshed and energetic? If you are, then you needn’t worry about getting enough sleep. Your “insomnia” means you are trying to fall asleep too early, or get up later than your body needs you to.

However, if you do suffer from occasional insomnia, or sleep fitfully and wake up tired, Ayurvedic self-care measures and remedies can help you restore a normal sleep schedule and awaken refreshed rather than exhausted. Instead of “knocking you out,” as habit-forming conventional medicines tend to do, Ayurvedic practices and remedies encourage the body to drift into a natural, restful sleep.

Insomnia is a classic sign of a vata imbalance and a nervous system disorder. It is estimated fifteen to twenty million americans struggle with insomnia which may lead to headaches, dry skin,constipation,anxiety, depression and body pain.So many undigested life experiences can cause insomnia-career projects, family real If you are questioning the adequacy of your sleep, ask yourself, Do I need an alarm clock to wake up every morning? If so, you are not getting adequate sleep. Do you wake up refreshed and energetic? If you are, then you needn’t worry about getting enough sleep. Your “insomnia” means you are trying to fall asleep too early, or get up later than your body needs you to.

However, if you do suffer from occasional insomnia, or sleep fitfully and wake up tired, Ayurvedic self-care measures and remedies can help you restore a normal sleep schedule and awaken refreshed rather than exhausted. Instead of “knocking you out,” as habit-forming conventional medicines tend to do, Ayurvedic practices and remedies encourage the body to drift into a natural, restful sleep.

Copyright © Dr. Helen Thomas 2007. All rights reserved.