What Causes Bloating | Health Guides Daily

Question: Why do some foods cause bloating? If I eat fish and vegetables I’m not bloated. If I eat Indian food, I’m always bloated. Is it simply overeating? Is it food-combining? I would like to never be bloated again.

An Answer:

Feeling bloated means feeling gross. There are several things which could cause bloating and you guessed at two of them – overeating and food combining.

Basically, when you’re bloated it means that something has interfered with your digestion and isn’t allowing it to proceed as it normally would. Anything that interferes with the proficiency of digestive juices is going to make it seem like you’re too full. When food sits in the stomach for longer-than-normal, not digesting as it should, it can begin to ferment causing excessive gas which may increase the bloated feeling. Food that has passed from the abdomen to the intestine without being properly digested can lead to lower digestive bloating and gas.

Over-stuffing yourself is one example, where the acids in your stomach are overwhelmed by the shear amount of food that is there. Improper food combining is another possibility. Proteins, fats and carbohydrates all require different amounts of time to digest in your stomach before moving to the lower digestion. While carbs go through rather quickly, proteins undergo their main digestion in the stomach, taking longer. Fats take longest of all and can cause delays in stomach emptying which may increase the feeling of fullness. People who are frequently bothered by bloating may wish to try a food combining diet to see if the situation improves.

Dumping a sweet dessert on a fatty meal is a food combining no-no and is one of the worst culprits for post meal bloat. Mixing fats, which take a long time to digest, with simple carbohydrates which move quickly out of the abdomen means the sugars (carbs) will be in there too long. Food moves out of the stomach together so the sugars need to wait for the fats and proteins to digest fully before the stomach will be emptied and all the food moves to the small intestine together. Sugary foods held in your abdomen will lead to fermentation, increasing gas, belching and bloating. This can also result in heartburn, where the stomach acids, struggling to digest the food that is there, splash up into the esophagus causing a burning sensation. If foods ferment in the intestines it may result in lower digestive gas and bloating.

Sometimes people don’t create enough hydrochloric acid in their stomachs for food to digest properly in the first place. This could be due to low zinc levels, bacterial overgrowth in the stomach or simply as a natural part of aging. Some nutritionists recommend hydrochloric acid supplements to help increase stomach acids; a more holistic methodology than shutting down digestion with antacids.

Eating too quickly or when in an anxious state can also lead to swallowing too much air in the process. This can lead to bloating and excessive belching. Some people are more inclined toward gassiness and bloating from certain foods. Fatty foods, chocolate and peppermint are all foods which can relax the sphincter at the end of the esophagus leading to excessive belching. Carbonated beverages, smoking and chewing gum can also increase the amount of air getting into the stomach.

Incomplete digestion will often lead to bacterial fermentation in the intestines. Undigested food getting to the intestines means bacteria get a feast, producing gas as a bi-product. Sugar alcohols like sorbitol and mannitol which are found in sugarless gums and candies are not broken down by digestion and can lead to fermentation in the intestines. Some people have a tough time with certain raw foods and may need to take a digestive enzyme when eating them. Some bloating and gas may also be caused by food intolerances. Lactose intolerance or gluten intolerance can both lead to a feeling of bloating after these foods have been consumed.

The best way to avoid bloating is to figure out what is causing it in the first place. Keep a food journal and take note of what was eaten before the bloating happened. You may begin to see a pattern emerge. See if it is perhaps the combinations of foods that are causing problems and try a food combining regime if this is the case. You may also wish to try a digestive enzyme from a health food store to see if it helps with the problem.

Waterpik Tonsil Stones Treatment | Health Guides Daily

A water pik is a dental tool that applies different pressured streams of water to flush out areas of the mouth. When you use this on and around tonsil stones it can often remove them although it hurt just a little for the larger stones. The waterpik treatment is consider a natural treatment and the water pik itself can be picked up at local and online stores for around $30 too.

Basically what you want to do is set the water pik at the level you want then massage the tonsil stones and the area around them. If you happen to have a gag reflex that is sensitive this may not be the easier or most comfortable process but it will get the job done. Not only is this a great way to loosen up the stone and suck them out it also flushes the area out at the same time. The waterpik treatment may not be the most comfortable but it is extremely cost efficient and it really does remove and clear out these stones.

The water pik machine was designed to massage the gums in order to make flossing easier. You fill up the machine with water, some people even use warm salt water, and then adjust the water pressure level to high or low. Once you start flushing you can pretty much get any tonsil stone out even the ones that tend to stick and then flush them down the sink.

If you do not have the money for a water pik you can try to use a cotton swab to help massage and pop the tonsil stones loose. Cotton swabs will work but you have to make sure you have a strong enough one and can apply the pressure to the right areas. You can also try popping them out with your tongue if it is strong and long enough to reach the tonsil stones.

Gargling with warm salt water and drinking apple cider vinegar are another example of a natural treatment for tonsilloliths that have worked for numerous people before. If you want to avoid getting the surgical treatment options then some of these natural remedies are great to try and won’t break your budget either. However, there are some cases where tonsil stones are too large and sever for these remedies to take, especially if you have a history of getting tonsilloliths or other tonsil related illnesses.

Next to the natural options like the waterpik for tonsil stones, the other option is of course a tonsillectomy which will guarantee you won’t ever get tonsilloliths again. Whatever option you find works the best for you just make sure you are keeping your health and body’s immune system in mind. The better your body run the better that you feel and tonsilloliths can have a lot of painful side effects that could make the process even more unbearable. Recognize the symptoms and know your treatment options.

Tonsil Stones Treatment Options

Whether you know them as tonsilloliths, tonsil stones or simply tonsil sores they can be very uncomfortable and cause some pretty rank breathe. Luckily there are some remedies out there so you don’t have to live with the problem for long. For those of you who are unfamiliar with tonsilloliths they are basically bumps or pockets that appear in clusters on your tonsils and in the back of your throat. They can be caused by many things but the most common is from your nasal fluid down your throat.

When you are reading to seek out treatment for the tonsilloliths you should really make sure you have them first. The symptoms can resemble strep throat closely so even if you do not want to see a doctor check out some images and guides online so you can better identify the problem. You can either choose to seek surgical or natural treatment when it comes down to it.

If you choose the natural treatment then you have a few different options to try out. One of the most common ways to treat them yourself is with a water pik and flush the stones out completely as we stated above. Some people with strong enough tongues can actually scrape them off just by moving their tongues back there and swallowing. If you do not have a sensitive gag reflex then you stick two cotton swabs back there and squeeze the stones (like a pimple) so you can drain the stones and then gurgle some water. Here are a few other self treatment tips and options:

  • Always clean and brush your tongue after meals as you would with brushing your teeth
  • Gargle warm salt water or mouth wash without any alcohol in it to remove stones
  • The more water you drink the less likely you are to develop halitosis and dry mouth
  • Always maintain a good level of personal oral hygiene
  • Promote saliva production with water and sugar free gums and candies

There are a couple different surgical treatments, depending on how sever your stones are. If you only have a few your doctor may choose to simply take a tool and scrap them away itself and then it will just be up to you to keep good hygiene and hydration to keep them away. The other option is that they perform a complete tonsillectomy which is where they simply remove your tonsils completely. Unless you have experienced problems with your tonsils before, or are over a certain age, you won’t see this option a lot in adults. However, a tonsillectomy is the most common surgery performed among children and teenagers.

It is important for you to understand what tonsil stones are and your treatment options. When it comes to the different between natural and surgical treatment the decision will be up to you. Whether you are shopping based on price or viability there are plenty of options to choose from.

Watermelon Health Benefits | Health Guides Daily

I recently wrote a post weighing the nutrition of cantaloupe versus honeydew melons and I had more than one person ask “what about watermelon.” While it’s my opinion that cantaloupe and honeydew are the “best” melons by far, the masses prefer watermelon.

Watermelon is often thought of as an empty food – mostly water, sweet taste, but not much in the way of nutrition. This simply isn’t the case. In fact, all the water taking up space in these pink, fleshy melons make them a really nutrient-dense food. Nutrient density is measured by nutrient to calorie ratio, so since water has no calories, watermelon is really nutrient dense! Keep reading to find out all the health benefits.

Although a watermelon is sweeter than an apple, it actually contains about half as much fruit sugar. And while it’s somewhat tricky to find an organic watermelon, come August you’ll be able to get local ones. And here is some more good news: Watermelons are on the Environmental Working Group’s list of the “Clean 15” conventionally grown fruits and vegetables with the least amount of residual pesticides.

Like its cousin the cantaloupe, watermelon is a good source of beta carotene, a carotenoid phytonutrient that is the precursor to vitamin A. Watermelon is quite high in many of the carotenoids including lycopene, which is more famous for being found in tomatoes. Lycopene is the antioxidant compound that gives watermelon its rosy colour. It may even be a more powerful antioxidant than other carotenoids such as beta carotene. Scientific studies have found that the consumption of lycopene-rich foods can reduce the risk of heart disease in women, protect men from prostate cancer and atherosclerosis. It’s also been found to help prevent cancers of the cervix, bladder and pancreas.

Add to its profile the fact watermelon is a good source of vitamin C and you see its potential as an antioxidant powerhouse. It may not keep the ants away from your picnic, but at least you’ll be protected from free radical damage! Watermelon is also a good source of B6 and B1, potassium, silicon and magnesium.

Watermelon is a mild diuretic and so is considered a rejuvenating blood tonic. It’s also a very alkalinizing food. Watermelon has antibacterial and anticoagulating effects, works as a digestive aid and a mild laxative. It lubricates the intestines and regulates lower digestion.

And recently scientists found a natural substance present in melons that may help with stress. The substance is an enzyme called superoxide dismutase (SOD), a powerful antioxidant that breaks down potentially harmful oxygen molecules in cells. SOD has the potential to prevent free radical damage to tissues.

In the study, subjects who received melon juice concentrate capsules were observed to have significantly lessened stress and fatigue markers. Concentration, weariness, insomnia and irritability were all markedly improved in the group receiving the melon concentrate.

Similarly, an animal study out of Japan found that stress-induced impairment to cognitive function was prevented by the same type of melon extract (SOD). This study also found the melon extract increased the brain’s antioxidant defenses and prevented impairment of spatial memory caused by stress. It’s no wonder that watermelon has traditionally been used to help with depression.

So don’t hold back on this delicious summer treat.

The Healthy Foodie is Doug DiPasquale, Holistic Nutritionist and trained chef, living in Toronto. Doug specializes in private in-home holistic cooking lessons. 

Waste Less Food | Health Guides Daily

Are you worried about how much food you (and the world) are wasting? We asked Jonathan Bloom, author of ‘American Wasteland,’ to explain how we waste food and how we can do better.

Q: How is food most commonly wasted?

A: The most common way we waste food is by simply buying too much. That weekly habit of purchasing groceries without looking at what’s in the fridge or considering how often we don’t have time to cook gets us in trouble. If we realized how much that gratuitous spending amounted to, we’d be much more likely to change our behavior.

Q: What broader social repercussions does that food waste have?

A: When we waste food, we’re turning a deaf ear to those among us who don’t get enough to eat. And it’s morally callous to waste as much food as we do when so many people go hungry. Based on our behavior at home and restaurants, we’re teaching our children that it’s okay to waste food. And the way we serve school lunches also communicates that food is disposable, like most everything these days.

In addition, throwing away food is contagious. In some kinds of restaurants, it’s socially acceptable to not take leftovers home. I long for the day when sending back a half-full plate of food would be tantamount to throwing away, not recycling, a bottle of soda. If everyone sought to waste less food and composted what little they did have, those virtuous behaviors would also catch on.

Q: Does most of the responsibility lie with the consumer or the food industry?

A: It’s shared fairly equally — there’s plenty of blame to go around. On the one hand, the food industry is merely responding to consumer demands for perfect, beautiful food. Then again, we are incentivized to spend more and get more food.

At home, this means more back-of-the fridge waste. At restaurants, we’re faced with the choice of overeating or wasting(although taking leftovers home is the wise third option). If we all stopped buying massive portions and asked for smaller portions at restaurants, it would yield change. And if we asked our grocers to sell the imperfect and soon-to-expire items at a discount, we’d pare down some of our waste.

Q: What’s your advice for anyone who wants to waste less food?

A: 1. Shop smarter — Check what foods you have on hand before shopping. Plan meals and bring a detailed shopping list to the store so you don’t buy more food than you can possibly eat. If you prefer, making smaller, more frequent shopping trips might be a better strategy to avoid overbuying.

2. Be wise about portion size — We’re all familiar with restaurants serving giant portions. But at home, you can counter that trend. Be aware of how much you serve to your family, knowing that it’s very easy to ask for seconds. Or even try using smaller plates.

3. Love your leftovers — Take home what you have from restaurants because it’s just thrown out otherwise. With your help, we can lose what little stigma remains with “doggy bagging.” It’s cool to take home leftovers — not only is it frugal, it’s the green thing to do.

Q: If you could get people to change one of their consumption habits, what would it be?

A: One of my true pet peeves is when people buy perishable foods in bulk to save money, but then lose those savings through waste. Shopping at the massive bulk retailers may make sense for large families, those who use their freezer, or folks who focus on shelf-stable goods. But otherwise, it may make more sense to buy your perishables elsewhere. The more choice in package size or amount, the less waste we create.

Vitamin Water: Health Drink or Soft Drink? | Health Guides Daily

Soft drink companies try many ploys to get us to believe that the sugar-laden, artificially colored beverages they’re pilfering are actually good for us. In fact, processed food companies collectively spend approximately $40 billion per year on food product advertising, drilling into us the idea that sports drinks are “better than water” at hydrating after a workout, for example.

It seems the latest means to get us to drink their sparkly, pretty-colored drinks is the additions of vitamins. Combine the buzz word “vitamin” with the word thought of as the most natural hydrator “water” and you’ve got yourself a piece of marketing genius designed to make you think of these cocktails as the perfect health tonic. Vitamin water has been all the rage these last few years, but to me this represents the ultimate in deception.

My main problem with these drinks is that they are using vitamins and minerals as an irresponsible marketing gimmick, leading consumers to believe these drinks are a valid source of nutrition and not simply a soft drink with a twist. People do need these vitamins, but the best source of them is from real food, together with all their myriad constituents that help the vitamins to be absorbed and work properly in the body. These drinks provide fractionated vitamin extracts, not present in their natural state with all the natural catalysts and symbiotic phytonutrients usually present in nature. It is often the synergistic effect of all these constituents of a whole food that nourish on the body, not the isolated nutrients themselves.

Many argue there is a time and place for vitamin water and that is during or immediately following an intense workout when the body needs a quick replacement for lost vitamins, electrolytes and water. I will concede that this may be an excusable use for the beverage, although I would still argue there are alternatives that don’t contain the sugar or “natural flavors” and can deliver the vitamins in their more natural form.

And, although some will argue that sugar is a necessary ingredient for the quick energy desirable for athletes, as Dr. Mercola says, “Sugar acts like an H-bomb on your system. There’s a quick explosion of energy followed by a plummeting disaster, as your pancreas and other glands do all they can to balance out the toxic stimulation to blood sugar.” Mercola also points out that less than one percent of those using these sports drinks actually need them for athletics.

I recommend getting your vitamins from whole foods like fruits, vegetables, grains, legumes and yes, even meats. It seems silly to try to get nutrition from a soft drink company. If you need additional vitamins, then take a real supplement; (preferably one that has come from a reputable company backed by real research, not discount vitamins from giant chain stores – not all vitamin supplements are created equal).

Try beet kvass, green drinks, homemade orangina or ginger ale to replenish vitamins and quench thirst. These drinks contain vitamins from whole foods in their whole form and provide a host of mineral electrolytes instead of just calcium, potassium and magnesium like vitamin waters and sports drinks. You could also try my recipe for a homemade sports drink. Or try adding a pinch of unrefined sea salt to reverse osmosis or distilled water to add in electrolytes and 92 different trace minerals. There are many options out there, don’t let food advertising lead you to believe otherwise.

Here is a comment from one of readers as below:

Vitamin water is just the latest gambit for Coca-Cola and others to scoop your hard earned money – and the drink is junk. Yes, there are facts to backup the comments made – one of them being the damage that a load of sugar does to your body. This is the type of drink that being consumed for years sets you up for type two diabetes (adult onset). Wake up people – if its instant, well, common on, use the brain that took millions of years to evolve……..there is no such thing as health in a bottle – kids drink this stuff like its healthy, parents get fooled, enough said alright – due diligence people – don’t take anyone’s word for it – check it out yourself and keep away from conflict of interest sources for your info. Eat a nice juicy orange, or a crisp tangy apple – what’s the matter people – forgot how delicious real food tastes – amazes me that I live next door to a school and there is always apples, oranges, tangerines, grapes, thrown on the ground and put in the garbage bins uneaten (homeless people take note – schoolyards are full of unused, unwrapped good food packed by mom that the kids throw away, so they will look cool suckig back a bottle of vitamin water) – and yet, they are dumping empty chip bags (all eaten),pizza slice garbage, Tim Horton’s garbage, sports drink bottles – junk food people junk food – Today I saw two teenagers at the schoo that were morbidly obese – fat enough to kill them. Junk food eaters all………

WAKE UP PEOPLE – GET OUT OF THE TRANCE THAT SLICK ADVERTISING HYPNOTIZES YOU INTO BELIEVING…….

I THINK WE ARE DEVOLVING…. eat real food and chug a glass of water.

–Jessica

The Author is Doug DiPasquale, Holistic Nutritionist and trained chef, living in Toronto.

Viral Bronchitis | Health Guides Daily

Viral bronchitis is seen the most during the winter months when it is cold outside and is often times the result of a virus or a number of viruses. It is the most common type of contagious bronchitis in adults who are normally healthy. This condition will typically run its course in 5 to 7 days without any antibiotic intervention. It is important to know some key differences between viral and aother type that is caused by a bacteria or some type of infection.

For most people who are suffering from this type they will have some excessive mucus or sputum that they cough up but it is normally white in color. If the mucus being coughed up is more of a yellow or greenish color it could be caused from an infection and often times antibiotics are needed.

Antibiotics are not really effective because there is no infection for the antibiotic to actually treat. However if it has been brought on by some form of the flue then some antiviral drugs have been known to give relief of the common viral bronchitis symptoms.

Additionally many over the counter medications such as anti-inflammatory and pain medications may help with the pain in the chest and the congestion. Some patients also find relief in an over the counter cough syrup to help with the constant hacking that is common.

Even though it is not as serious as other forms there are still symptoms that you have to deal with that are discomforting. Along with the cough that can be very persistent many people experience tightness and sometimes pain in their chest, shortness of breath and a general feeling of being tired.

Viral bronchitis generally clears up or begins to clear up within 5 to 7 days on its own. If symptoms persist consideration should be given to see a doctor to be reevaluated to rule out a bacteria infection or an early pneumonia.

Here we can learn more on this article:

Chronic Bronchitis

The two most common causes of chronic bronchitis are acute bronchitis that persists for more than 2 months and smoking. Research also indicates that another cause is acid reflux disease. It is possible that this disease can exasperate an already week bronchial system. According to the Mayo Clinic stomach acid that surges up into the esophagus is now being linked with this condition.

Bronchitis is simply the presence of infection and or swelling in a person’s airway or bronchi also referred to as the bronchial tubes. It is sometimes classified according to the number of weeks or months a person has had continuous signs and symptoms and is either classified as chronic bronchitis or acute bronchitis. The former is the condition that has been present for 2 or more months and is also commonly caused by smoking cigarettes.

Chronic bronchitis can also be brought on by the presence of secondary smoke and other pollutants in the atmosphere. The “other pollutants” can be many common environmental smells or odors including but not limited to those that come from fumes from products and chemicals. Any patient must understand that it is an infection or at least the presence of inflammation that started at a specific point and time.

Obviously this specific point at least for those who suffer from chronic bronchitis is a time when they were around a certain odor, fumes in the air, exposure to dust and the exposure to primary or secondary smoke. The most common difference between chronic and acute is that the acute form is common in those who have had the flu or other infections while chronic form may go on for several months and possibly a number of years.

The more common signs and symptoms of an upper respiratory infection include a constant hacking cough. The coughing is an effort by the body to remove and clear yellow or green mucus that’s clogging passageways. Bronchitis is an infection of the upper respiratory system. Signs and symptoms of upper respiratory infections wheezing, sore throat, chest tightness, and a cough that usually brings up green or yellowish mucus, etc.

Chronic type is often associated with the yellow or green mucus that’s coughed up a by the affected person. This is an indication an infection, because as the air passages become more inflamed, mucus is produced to fight off the infection.

The greenish or yellow mucus that is coughed up by the person with bronchitis is more common with chronic form as apposed to acute. This discolored mucus or sputum is an indication that an infection is present because the airways have inflammation and the excessive mucus is produced to fight the infection.

Acute Bronchitis

It is the presence of swelling in a person’s airway or bronchial tubes. These tubes are the tubes that connect the lungs to the trachea commonly referred to as the windpipe.

Let’s break it down a bit. If you’re caught a cold or have had the flue the result was that your respiratory system became week and this is the common beginning for acute bronchitis. Thankfully this form usually subsides within a couple of weeks unlike other respiratory problems such as pneumonia and is not nearly as dangerous. This type of condition can be caused by a virus as well as bacteria.

A persistent cough is usually the first sign. Typically there are two different types of coughing that accompany bronchitis. The first and most common is a dry cough that produces very little fluid. The second is the opposite and brings up all kinds of nasty stuff from the lungs called mucus or sputum.

Diagnosing acute bronchitis has been known to be somewhat difficult due to the fact that many of the signs and symptoms are common with other respiratory problems. Some things the doctor might do to diagnose this type of condition would be to find out of you’ve had respiratory problems in the past as well as listen to your lungs with the stethoscope. Sometimes they will run a test that is virtually painless that will tell him what your blood oxygen level is. A good blood oxygen saturation is anything between 95% and 100%.

If you have the unfortunate opportunity of being diagnosed with this condition there is very little to be alarmed about. You may decide to treat it or just let it run its course and pass with time. Usually when someone is diagnosed with acute bronchitis the can heal with plenty of rest and fluids. It’s not uncommon for the cough to remain after the other symptoms have gone away. It is possible but not likely for the cough to last for 3 or 4 weeks even though there are no other symptoms.

Preventing acute bronchitis is not the easiest of tasks. For the most part people who are smokers will greatly reduce their chances of getting it if they will simply give up the cigarettes although that’s easier said than done. Additionally getting a flu shot each year before flu season may also help for prevention.

Symptoms

There are a number of symptoms that are important for you to know about so that you can make a good decision about whether or not you might want to see a doctor and find out for sure if you are suffering from bronchitis or some other respiratory problem.

The bronchi are lining so to speak of the bronchial tubes that connect to a person’s lungs. Bronchitis is simply inflammation or swelling of the bronchi. It can be caused by what you may think is a regular cold, soreness in the throat or the flu. Low temperatures and cold air in the winter months encourage it in a bad way more than any other time during the year. Commonly known causes are breathing air that has the virus that causes bronchitis or by smoking cigarettes.

Bronchitis symptoms commonly last from one to two weeks but sometimes they can last longer. It can become chronic among people who smoke or continue to suffer from acute type.

So what are the common signs and symptoms? One of the most common symptoms is a persistent cough that produces a yellow or green mucus also known as sputum. Some other signs are chest pain and shortness of breath. Believe it or not mucus is quite normal in a healthy person. Healthy airways can make 4 or 5 tablespoons of mucus each day. But the problem arises when these mucus secretions begin to accumulate in the airways.

When the bronchial tubes which are the place for air to get to your lungs, become swollen and inflamed to begin to produce excessive amounts of mucus that is discolored that comes up when you cough. If this mucus discoloration continues for more than 2 to 3 months it’s commonly considered chronic bronchitis. Anytime there is discoloration of the mucus usually means that there is an infection.

Nevertheless, sometimes these symptoms can be confusing. Often time’s patients don’t have an excessive amount of mucus and children will commonly just swallow the sputum after they cough it up and the parent may never know that there is mucus present in the child’s airways. Or just because a person may have some excessive mucus does not automatically mean that they have developed bronchitis.

Some other signs and symptoms of bronchitis are as follows:

Wheezing, chest pain or a burning feeling in the chest, congestion, a low grade fever, general malaise or weakness, sinus irritation and or a sore throat.

Choosing A Cure

Bronchitis is a condition that can often come about due to repeated infections in the respiratory tract, as a result of a severe cold, or due to a combination factors that include some personal habits coupled with infections or a condition of influenza. There are actually several different ways to go about treatments, depending on the type and severity of the condition. Here are some examples of treatments that may be helpful.

One of the more common approaches to situations where a mild case is the use of expectorants. The expectorant makes it possible to loosen the buildup of mucus in the air passages, allowing the body to flush the mucus out of the system and bring about some degree of relief. With the mucus out of the way, it is easier for the natural defenses of the body to deal with the problem. Expectorants are one example that can be used whether the condition came about due to bacteria or by way of a virus.

Another common means of helping to deal with this disease is to keep a vaporizer handy. The infusion of warm moist air can also help to clear air passages in the nose and throat. This helps to bring some relief to the sufferer, and also allows the body to get a more equitable balance of fresh air into the bloodstream.

Antibiotics are perhaps the frontline of dealing with any type of bronchitis that can be traced back to some sort of bacteria. Prescribed by a physician, the antibiotics can immediately begin to attack the origin of the condition, and bring about a relatively quick resolution to the situation. However, it should be noted that antibiotics do not tend to be an effective curing when it comes to cases that originate from a virus rather than from bacteria.

There are a number of herbs that are recommended for alleviating and eventually reversing bronchitis. Cayenne, with its high content of capsicum, can help to clear out clogged passages, strengthen the lungs, and in general promote better health. This helps to give the body more resources to use in ridding the body of the condition. Garlic is an excellent antiseptic and can help deal with cases of bronchitis that are the result of a bacterial infection. Lobelia is an excellent expectorant that can help relieve chest congestion. Many of these herbs have an impact due to the presence of important minerals and vitamins. Zinc is one of the key elements that help strengthen the body to combat bronchitis and bring about a natural cure.

Type 2 Diabetes: Causes, Symptoms & Treatment | Health Guides Daily

Causes

The causes of type 2 diabetes are unclear. Diabetes seems to run in families in most cases. However, age, diet, obesity and a lack of exercise also play a role. The rising number of type 2 diabetes cases seems to correlate with the increasing number of overweight and obese Americans. About six out of every 10 Americans are overweight or obese.

Symptoms

In children, teenagers and young adults, symptoms of type 2 diabetes tend to develop abruptly over days or within weeks. In overweight adults older than 40, diabetes tends to develop more gradually over several years. Often diabetes goes undiagnosed because many of its symptoms seem harmless. Finding and treating diabetes early can help reduce the chance of complications.

Some diabetes symptoms include:

  • Increased fatigue.
  • Extreme hunger.
  • Excessive thirst.
  • Frequent urination (especially needing to get up during the night).
  • Blurred vision.
  • Irritability.
  • Weight loss.
  • Frequent infections (especially urinary tract infections, boils, and fungal infections).
  • Erectile dysfunction (impotence).
  • Slow healing of cuts and sores.

Because of the nature of these symptoms, diabetes might not be discovered until you see a doctor about another health problem that could be caused by the undiagnosed diabetes.

Symptoms suggesting low blood sugar

  • Night sweats.
  • Nightmares.
  • Headache.
  • Sweaty rapid pulse.
  • Feeling nervous or jittery or confused.

If your blood sugars are recording low and you do NOT have these symptoms, you may be unaware of hypoglycemia. Hypoglycemia happens from time to time to everyone who has diabetes.

THIS COULD BE SERIOUS.

If you are worried about this, you should:

  • Carry something sweet with you at all times.
  • Check your finger-stick sugar levels at least four times per day.

Risk Factors

  • Obesity. Most people with type 2 diabetes are obese, weighing at least 20 percent more than what is recommended for their height or having a BMI (body mass index) of 30 or greater. Insulin resistance increases when weight is excessive.
  • Heredity. Type 2 diabetes can run in families.
  • Age. The risk for developing type 2 diabetes increases with age. Half of all new cases of type 2 diabetes occur in people 55 or older.
  • Race. Compared with Caucasians and Asians, type 2 diabetes is more common among Native Americans, African-Americans and Hispanics.
  • Sedentary lifestyle. Insulin resistance increases with lack of exercise.
  • Women who have had gestational diabetes. Women who develop gestational diabetes during pregnancy have an increased risk of getting type 2 diabetes later on in life. Women who give birth to babies weighing 9 pounds or more at birth also have an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
  • Certain medications. The use of certain drugs, including diuretics and steroids, may contribute to the development of type 2 diabetes.

Prevention

While family history of type 2 diabetes is one of the strongest risk factors, this genetic link generally matters more in people living an unhealthy lifestyle. Many Americans eat too much fat and not enough carbohydrates and fiber, weigh too much and don’t exercise enough. Type 2 diabetes is more common in people with these habits, especially if they have a family history of diabetes.

If you develop pre-diabetes, you may have a chance to prevent or slow the progression of diabetes type 2 by changing your habits. Pre-diabetes is a condition that starts before type 2 diabetes. This means blood glucose levels are higher than normal but not yet high enough to be diagnosed as diabetes. At least 20 million Americans ages 40 to 74 have pre-diabetes. For many people with pre-diabetes, lifestyle changes can return elevated blood glucose levels to the normal range.

  • Eat a diet rich in fruits and vegetables along with whole grains, beans and low-fat dairy products. Red meat should be eaten sparingly. Lean meats such as chicken and turkey are preferable. Sweets should be eaten occasionally.
  • Exercise at least 30 minutes a day for most days of the week. Take a stroll in your neighborhood or take the stairs. Every bit of movement counts.
  • Maintain a healthy weight, and lose weight if you need to. Any reduction in body weight can reduce your chances for diabetes.
  • Talk to your doctor about diabetes, particularly if you have risk factors.

Diagnosed by Test

Common tests used for monitoring diabetes.

To help diagnose pre-diabetes or diabetes, your doctor has two different tests to use: the fasting plasma glucose test or the oral glucose tolerance test. Your blood glucose levels after these tests determine if your metabolism is normal, or whether you have pre-diabetes or diabetes.

Routine monitoring by your doctor when you have diabetes:

Name of Test How Often It Should Be Ordered
Recent blood sugar level Every visit
Hemoglobin A1C level If in desirable range, two times a year. If outside desirable range, four times a year.
Blood fat (lipid) panel Once a year
Blood electrolyte level Not routine: Test only if there is reason for concern.
Blood creatinine level Once a year
Urine test for protein Once a year
Thyroid tests Once a year
Electrocardiogram (EKG) Once (if you are over 35)

Note:

You should also have your eyes examined by a specialist every year. Your blood pressure, weight and feet should be examined at every visit.

Other Tests

Glucose monitoring

All people with type 2 diabetes need to monitor their blood glucose levels, since the single most important factor in managing the disease is achieving tight glucose control.

Most people with type 2 diabetes monitor their blood glucose levels at home. Home glucose monitoring involves taking a small sample of blood from the fingertip, placing it on a special strip, and waiting for a machine to read the glucose levels. This can be as quick as five seconds. There are other meters available that are less painful.

Keep a log for results. This will help your doctor know if your treatment plan is working.

Urine checks

Urine checks for sugar are not as accurate as blood glucose checks, which are preferred by doctors. But doing a urine test for ketones is another matter. This can help determine if your diabetes is out of control. You can find moderate or large amounts of ketones in urine when your body is burning fat instead of glucose for fuel. This happens when there is too little insulin at work.

Moderate or large amounts of ketones are a danger sign. They upset the chemical balance of your blood and can poison your body. Call your doctor immediately if there are ketones in your urine.

Treatment Plan

Good glucose control is the cornerstone to your treatment plan. Most aspects such as measuring your sugar levels, taking diabetes pills or insulin shots, exercising, losing weight, and planning meals are to help you reach your target sugar level.

Medical Examination

Diabetes is not broken into different levels of severity, although the condition called pre-diabetes sets the stage for the disease to develop.

Doctors look for how well you are controlling your disease. The most important ways to reduce your risk of developing complications associated with diabetes are to maintain tight blood glucose control and have regular checkups. Poorly controlled diabetes could lead to complications, including:

  • Cardiovascular and cerebrovascular disorders. Two-thirds of people with diabetes die of heart or blood vessel disease. Those with diabetes are five times more likely than those without to have a stroke.
  • Eye disorders. The most serious is a condition called diabetic retinopathy, which is caused by damage to the blood vessels that nourish the nerves within the retina. People with diabetes also are at higher risk for cataracts (clouding of the lens of the eye) and glaucoma (caused by an increase in fluid pressure within the eye that damages the optic nerve).
  • Nervous system disorders. Diabetic neuropathy can cause a pins and needles sensation in hands and legs or a loss of pain sensation in the extremities, which can contribute to foot problems. Neuropathy also can affect the bladder, bowel and stomach along with causing sexual dysfunction in men.
  • Foot ulcers. Diabetic foot ulcers are open foot sores that lead to thousands of amputations each year in people with diabetes.
  • Kidney disorders. Kidney damage called nephropathy occurs more commonly with diabetes and may cause end-stage renal disease.
  • Infection. People with diabetes have an increased risk of developing many types of infections.

Treatment goals

Measure How Often To Be Checked Goal
Blood Sugar Levels Each Visit *Before Meals:

  • 110 mg/dL or lower

*After Meals:

  • 140 mg/dL or lower
Hemoglobin A1C 2 to 4 Times a Year *6.5 percent or lower
Blood Pressure Levels Each Visit Below 130/80
Weight Levels Each Visit As Close To Ideal Weight As Possible
Lipid Levels Once A Year Low Density Lipoprotein Should Be Below 100 mg/dL
Urine Protein Level Once A Year Appropriate Treatment If Present
Eye (Retinal) Examination Once A Year Appropriate Treatment Given

*These numbers are ideal. These goals may change with an assessment by your doctor and diabetes team.

If your treatment is stable

Measure Frequency of Visit
If your diabetes is severe or complicated and you are on insulin shots. Once A Month
If your diabetes is severe or complicated and you are taking tablets only. Every 6-12 Weeks
If your diabetes is not severe or complicated. Every 3 Months

If your treatment is just starting or has been changed*

Measure Frequency of Visit
If you are on diet alone. Every 2 months
If you are on tablets only. Every 1-2 months
If you are injecting more than 2 shots of insulin a day. Every 2 weeks

*NOTE:

In addition, weekly phone contact may be necessary. Contact may be required more often, especially when changing insulin doses.

Medications

Medication Safety Tips

When you are prescribed new medicines, make sure you understand the following things:

  • What is the medicine for?
  • How should I take it and for how long?
  • What should I do if I forget a dose?
  • What side effects can this medicine cause?
  • Is this medicine safe to take with the other medicines and supplements that I am presently taking?
  • What other safety measures should I follow while using this medicine?
  • What storage conditions are required for this medicine?
  • Ask for written information about the new medicine.

Types of Medicine

While some people with type 2 diabetes can control their disease with diet and exercise, most need medication. Treatment can include medications taken by mouth, insulin injections or both. Most oral medications increase insulin production, decrease glucose production or help the body use its own insulin better.

Sulfonylureas

Sulfonylureas stimulate the beta cells of the pancreas to release insulin. Sulfonylurea drugs have been around since the 1950s, with chlorpropamide as the only first-generation sulfonylurea still used. All these medications work similarly on blood glucose levels, yet they differ in what side effects they produce, how often they are taken and how they interact with other drugs.

Meglitinides

Meglitinides also stimulate the beta cells to release insulin. Because sulfonylureas and meglitinides stimulate the release of insulin, you might develop hypoglycemia, or low blood glucose levels.

Biguanides

Biguanides lower blood glucose levels by decreasing how much glucose the liver makes. These medications help lower blood glucose levels by making muscles more sensitive to insulin, allowing glucose to be absorbed. A side effect may be diarrhea.

Thiazolidinediones

These medications help insulin work better in the muscle and fat and also reduce glucose production in the liver. Thiazolidinediones can have a rare but serious effect on the liver. You should have regular blood tests to check your liver.

Alpha-glucosidase inhibitors

These drugs help lower blood glucose levels by blocking the digestion of starches, such as bread, potatoes and pasta, in the intestine. These medications can also slow the breakdown of some sugars consumed in the diet. Alpha-glucosidase inhibitors slow the rise in blood glucose levels after you eat. Side effects may include gas and diarrhea.

Insulin

Many people with diabetes take insulin to control blood sugar levels, or glucose. This medication cannot be taken by mouth because it would be destroyed by digestion. Many people get insulin shots. Other methods include insulin pens, insulin jet injectors and insulin pumps. Some insulin medications are fast-acting, only taking five to 15 minutes to start working and finishes in three to four hours. Longer-acting ones might take as long as four to six hours and may not finish until 48 hours later. More than 20 types of insulin products are available.

Doctor Visit

When to See the Doctor

Because the disease begins slowly, you may not know you have it. About one-half of the people with type 2 diabetes don’t know they have it. Some people dismiss their symptoms.

A condition known as pre-diabetes often precedes diabetes, but can be hard to find because it does not have obvious symptoms other than elevated blood glucose levels. If pre-diabetes is caught, the disease may be reversed or slowed.

If you have a family history and other risk factors, talk to your doctor. Watch out for symptoms such as frequent urination. The sooner diabetes is caught, the less chance you’ll have for complications.

Questions to Ask Your Doctor

You and your doctor should talk about the following items:

Referring to your pre-visit log:

  • How well is your diabetes being controlled? If more than 50 percent of your blood sugar results are outside your target range, your doctor will discuss changes to your treatment plan.
  • How well are you following your diet and exercise recommendations?
  • Whether you should receive in-depth education about diabetes from a group class or a certified nurse educator.
  • Whether you are experiencing low blood sugar levels. If so, ask your doctor to advise treatment.
  • Review of your weight and blood pressure results.
  • Review of your blood sugar results in the office.

Examination of your pulses, including your feet, and checking for dry and peeling skin, calluses and ulcers. Review of general rules for foot care.

You should also discuss:

  • Checking your mouth and gums.
  • Whether you may need laboratory testing and how often.
  • Additional factors that need treatment to prevent further problems.
  • Whether referral to a specialist or admission to a hospital is needed.
  • Treatment goals.

While at your doctor, make sure that you:

  • Understand how and when to take all of your medications.
  • Understand recommendations about your diet and exercise.
  • Know how to check your finger-stick sugar and how often to do it.
  • Have discussed with your doctor whether treatment is needed for any of the conditions that can cause complications.
  • Are referred to an eye specialist (if it is an annual visit).
  • Plans are made to check your blood fat levels and urine protein content.
  • Know the treatment goals for your condition.
  • Get a flu vaccination, if appropriate.

When to See a Specialist

Your diabetes care team may include a primary care doctor, nurses and a dietitian. Your primary care doctor may send you to other specialists to help deal with any complications you may develop.

You will be referred to an endocrinologist (diabetes specialist) when:

  • You haven’t met your target hemoglobin A1C goals in six months.
  • You’ve developed ulcers or infection in your feet that, despite treatment, do not get better quickly or come back.
  • You have severe pain or loss of feelings in your feet.
  • You experience frequent vomiting, diarrhea or low blood pressure with dizziness.
  • You have frequent low blood sugar levels.
  • You are being hospitalized often (whether for high or low blood sugar levels).
  • You have frequent episodes of ketoacidosis.

You will be referred to an ophthalmologist:

  • Routinely every year.
  • If you have any abnormal vision.
  • If your vision is getting worse.

You will be referred to a podiatrist:

  • If the nerves in your feet are damaged.

You May Be Admitted to the Hospital If…

Your doctor may consider admitting you to the hospital if you have a very high blood sugar level and any of the following:

  • A blood test that shows ketones in your blood.
  • A blood test that shows a high acid level.
  • You are dehydrated.
  • You need antibiotics directly into your veins.
  • You have a serious leg infection.
  • There is evidence of active heart problems.

Lifestyle Changes

Controlling your diabetes depends mostly on you and how well you stick to your treatment plan. Lifestyle changes can take time. Don’t lose patience.

  • Do not smoke.
  • Maintain normal blood pressure and blood cholesterol levels.
  • Eat a low-fat diet.
  • Get regular exercise. Exercise improves diabetes control 12 to 18 hours after physical activity.
  • See your diabetes care team regularly.
  • Monitor blood glucose levels.

Exercise

Start slowly, perhaps aiming for 15 minutes of physical activity a day. Develop an exercise program with your diabetes care team. Some people with diabetes may need approval from their doctors before starting an exercise program.

  • Get your weight to as close to ideal as possible.
  • If you are prone to hypoglycemia, exercise with someone for safety.
  • Aerobic activity is best. Ask your doctor what is right for you.
  • Each session should be 30 to 45 minutes long.
  • You can start by keeping a more active routine. Take the stairs, do the laundry, walk to your neighbor’s house instead of driving.

Cholesterol levels and blood pressure

People with diabetes should try to keep their cholesterol low no matter what their levels, according to a study published in the British medical journal The Lancet. Treatment using the cholesterol-lowering medication simvastatin lowered the risk of heart attacks and stroke for people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes by 30 percent, according to the study. About 6,000 people participating in the landmark Heart Protection Study benefited whether their cholesterol levels were high or normal.

Two out of every three adults with diabetes have high blood pressure. Hypertension and diabetes are associated with other problems, such as heart disease and strokes.

Diet

If you are taking oral medications or insulin, the timing of your meals is important. Skipping or delaying meals can lead to hypoglycemia (low blood sugar).

  • Eat at least five servings of fruits and vegetables each day.
  • Make grains, starches, cereals and potatoes the focus.
  • Eat small servings of meat, fish and poultry.
  • Use fats such as oil and butter sparingly.
  • Follow your dietitian’s meal plan.
  • Learn how to read Nutrition Facts labels.

Monitoring blood glucose

Everyone with diabetes should know how to use a blood glucose monitor. You will discuss with your doctor exactly how many times a day to measure your blood glucose. The frequency of home testing depends on the medication you are taking and how well your blood sugar is controlled on a daily basis.

Stress

Watch your stress. Elevated levels of stress hormones can interfere with your treatment plan. Try deep breathing and other relaxation techniques along with following your doctor’s treatment plan.

Everyday Care

  • Only eat sugar-free, low-calorie products.
  • Eat three meals a day and snacks at consistent times. Snacks are less important if you are taking diabetic medications by mouth.
  • Cut down on saturated fat.
  • Eat foods high in fiber.
  • Stop smoking.
  • Don’t drink excessively.
  • Follow the treatment plan closely so that you take all the medications your doctor has given you correctly.
  • Follow the diet and exercise recommendations.
  • Check your finger-stick sugars regularly and record the results on your blood sugar log. Also, check your blood sugars if you have symptoms of hypoglycemia (low blood sugar).
  • Check your feet routinely, but do not treat feet problems without talking with your doctor first.
  • Reduce stress. Studies show stress can affect how well your diabetes is controlled. Practice relaxation techniques such as deep breathing.
  • Before exercising, check your blood sugar levels.

Exercise tips

Check with your doctor before beginning any exercise program.

  • Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
  • Park farther away from store entrances.
  • Get together a group of friends to take a daily walk.
  • Mow the lawn or weed the garden.
  • Sign up for a dance class.
  • Go bowling or visit a museum.

Sources

1. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases

2. American Diabetes Association

3. National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse

4. U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Two Healthy Recipes From a Trainer: Protein Cookies and Apple Crisp | Health Guides Daily

Harry Scott, a personal trainer who has been weight training for 12 years and who is certified in Agatsu Kettlebell, describes his exercise routine and shares his recipe for healthy protein cookies along with a few motivation tips. Check out his best advice for getting in shape.

Q: What does your exercise routine look like?

A: I like to change my routine every six to eight weeks depending on how quickly my body adapts. I make sure to mix compound lifts, kettlebell swings and presses as well as some old fashioned cardio. Depending on my goal, I will perform circuit training routines, heavy lifting routines, or a mixture of both to keep my body and mind engaged. Currently I am lifting weights three days a week accompanied by two days of cardio/kettlebell work to keep up my conditioning level.

Q: How do you motivate yourself to work out when you’re not in the mood?

A: I keep motivated by setting myself short term goals: (building muscle mass, leaning out) that are a challenge to accomplish but still realistic. I also have the advantage of a great workout partner who will keep me in check if I feel like being lazy. We exercise independently but offer support (encouragement) and spot each other to allow for max lifts.

I try to remind myself on those difficult days (we all have them!) that I love how I feel after the workout and that if I can just get my foot in the door of the gym I will still be accomplishing something. I have a client that motivates herself on the days she works out alone by saying she “just has to do 10 minutes.” She always ends up doing a full workout!

Q: Do you make an effort to maintain a healthy diet? What are your biggest challenges in maintaining a healthy diet?

A: I try hard to eat a healthy diet mostly focusing on balancing my meals: 30 percent protein, 40 percent carbohydrates and 30 percent (healthy) fats. The biggest challenge I face with my diet is the amount of food I eat and therefore need to cook! I am a large male (6’4) and I work out very hard. This means that to maintain or gain muscle I must keep my calories up. I try and eat every two to three hours with four main meals per day as well as healthy snacks. I also have a big sweet tooth. I love eating candy and pie so I have had to get creative to fight these cravings. I have devised ways of making protein cookies as well as a healthy version of apple crisp. This generally gets me over the hump.

Q: Could you share your recipes for protein cookies and that healthy version of apple crisp?

A:
Apple Crisp
1 peeled apple cut into chunks
1/3 cup old fashion oatmeal
1/4 cup oat bran
1/2 tablespoon margarine (non hydrogenated)
Tablespoon almond milk
1 tablespoon brown sugar or stevia to your preference
Pinch of cinnamon
Half a pinch of nutmeg
If I want to make this into pancakes, I add egg whites, take out margarine and almond milk and fry in a pan with butter. I then microwave apples and sautee them with a bit of margarine while I fry pancakes.

Protein Cookies
I cup oatmeal
1/4 cup of margarine
2 tbsps of almond milk
2 scoops protein powder (we like chocolate)
Form into balls and put in freezer or fridge at your preference.

Q: What do you eat for breakfast every day?

A: For breakfast I like to eat oatmeal mixed with fresh fruit, a protein shake and sometimes a yogurt if I am still hungry. I also make sure to take all my vitamins!

Q: Does anything hold you back from leading a healthy lifestyle?

A: It’s sometimes difficult to push myself to work out at maximum intensity after using my energy to motivate other people.

Q: Is there anything you’ve found that helps you with these obstacles?

A: My mini goals help me stay motivated as I strive hard to achieve them. My workout partner and I also like to compete, which keeps things fresh and fun. I also have a very strong internal drive. I love working out and like working hard, the sense of accomplishment is very motivating.

Q: You train people who are striving for a healthier lifestyle. If you could offer one piece of advice, what would it be?

A: Stay consistent and stop looking at the scale. For an exercise program to be effective you need to stick with it for a minimum of 12 weeks (for a beginner). The other factor that people need to be more aware of is that muscle weighs more than fat. If you begin working out and notice that you are adding a few pounds, analyze how you are carrying the weight. Measure your inches rather than your weight on a scale. You may be heavier but actually smaller.

Harry Scott works out of Trainers Fitness (located on Bathurst just south of Bloor in Toronto) and can be reached at harry.scott45@gmail.com for more information about training.

Editor’s Review:

Here is my point in this article. Harry Scott mentions that he eats 30 percent healthy fats in every meal but goes on to include margarine in his recipes! That makes no sense! Margarine is BAD. And is definitely NOT a healthy fat.

Top Four Superfoods For Health | Health Guides Daily

I recently had a reader write to me and ask for my top five superfoods. I took a look on the site to see if I’d written about them before, thinking I’d just send her a link. I found a top 10 list from awhile ago, but I thought I’d update it here with a quick and easy list of my latest four.

A note on superfoods: These foods are trendy right now, but I personally think we should use them in moderation. Although adding a superfood to the diet here and there is a good way to bone-up on some needed nutrients, producers have started to call every food under the sun a superfood as a marketing gimmick.

Just because a food is good for you doesn’t make it a superfood. But since there’s no official definition of superfoods, there’s not much we can do. So, buyer beware — just because the packaging calls something a superfood doesn’t make it so (I don’t care how many antioxidants a juice contains, if it has colouring and sugar in it there’s nothing super about it!).

Spirulina/Chlorella: An incredibly nutrient-dense food containing omega-3 fats, lots of minerals (including about five times more calcium than whole milk), a complete protein profile and high vitamin E and beta carotene content. It’s also a good source of chlorophyll, the green pigment in plants that’s high in magnesium. (All these nutrients are highly absorbable.) It has potent immune stimulating effects as well as anti-viral activity.

Sea Vegetables: Sea veggies — like kelp, nori, dulse and kombu — are rich in minerals necessary for the functioning of the human body. As our soils become more and more mineral deficient and our diets come to include more and more demineralized processed foods, we’re literally dying for minerals! Sea vegetables contain a highly absorbable form of iodine, a mineral needed for proper thyroid functioning.

Rose Hips: Rose hips have become my favorite natural source of vitamin C. With much of the vitamin C supplements on the market coming from genetically modified corn, it’s good to know there’s still a clean source out there. Rose hips contain a whopping 2000 mg of the vitamin per every 100 g — that’s over 40 times more vitamin C than is in an orange!

Coconut Oil: People are usually a little iffy about including saturated fat in their diets, even though we need it for our body to function. So skip animal sources and indulge in this veggie source, instead. The predominant saturated fat in coconut is called lauric acid, which is used by the body to fight pathogenic microbes like viruses and bacteria. Coconut oil is also easily digested and is preferentially shuttled into the cells for energy, rather than stored as fat. And never mind the misinformation about saturated fat being bad for the heart — a recent study found patients recovering from heart attacks had better heart health in the long run when they were fed coconut oil. (That you, Joy McCarthy for this excellent superfood suggestion!)

The Healthy Foodie is Doug DiPasquale, a Holistic Nutritionist and trained chef living in Toronto.

Tonsillitis | Health Guides Daily

What is Tonsillitis

Tonsils are lymphoepithelial tissues that are located in the oropharynx and nasopharynx. They can be seen in the back of the throat. They are located just after the soft palate and beside the uvalva and that the reason they are called palatine tonsils. The main function of the tonsils is to prevent all foreign germs from attacking the body and provide a defense against any indigested germs. They are normally present in small children and continue to grow in puberty. They vary according to the diameter of the individual’s throat.

Tonsils act as a part of our defense mechanism however they can cause a problem to the individual as well. They can be an obstruction in swallowing food and breathing, apart from that they can also become inflamed due to bacteria or any other infection. However through a surgical procedure of tonsillectomy, tonsils can be removed completely. Most medical specialists of ear, nose and throat recommend that they not be removed because it decreases the immunity of the individual. Once the tonsils have been removed by surgery they cannot be replaced. The problem can be solved otherwise by the use of medication.

Tonsillitis can be of severe nature and acute nature. Acute nature tonsillitis is caused because of viral infections and bacteria and the patient experiences ear pain when swallowing food or saliva, bad breath, fever and sore throat. There are some common symptoms of tonsillitis that indicate its presence in the body which include cough, headache, fever, chills, nasal congestions, white patches on the tonsils, sore throat, Redding of the tonsils or sore eyes. The lymph nodes also become swollen and tonsils brighten in color.

There are a variety of viruses that lead to this state. The most recurrent among them include adenovirus, influenza, coronavirus syncytial virus, respiratory rhinovirus and all other common cold viruses that are related to the respiratory system. Harmful bacteria could also be the cause of the inflammation. The most common bacteria that is causes tonsillitis is Group A β-hemolytic streptococcus. Normally tonsils contain white blood cells that fight off any impurity entering the body through the mouth but sometimes the bacterial and viral infections are strong and cause the tonsils to be inflamed.

Tonsillitis can also cause complications in the body sometimes like dehydration. Dehydration is serious medical condition in which the body is deprived of its usual quantity of water and minerals and tends to cause weakness and low blood pressure. Kidney failure can also occur due to dehydration as the swallowing of food and water becomes difficult. Pharyngitis can also occur due to the increased inflammation of the tonsils. The patient can also develop peritonsillar abscess in the throat if the tonsillitis persists for many days unnoticed.  If the situation gets more worse it can even result in an infection of the jugular vein which can cause septicemia infection.

Rheumatic fever can also occur in cases of strep throat. The strep throat can lead to certain pediatric autoimmune neuropsychiatric problems but this problem hardly occurs. Tonsillitis is a very old disease and complications are rarely experienced by patients.

Tonsillitis Symptoms How to Recognize Them

There are many diseases that remain dormant inside the body so people can know little about them unless they leave their impact upon us. The one such disease that usually remains dormant is related to our throat and it is called tonsillitis. It is a disease that develops inside the throat due to calcium but some other elements like phosphorous, ammonia, carbonate and magnesium also become a cause for tonsils. They develop in the forms of clusters in crevasses of tonsils. Mostly this disease occurs in palatine tonsils but it does not mean that tonsils cannot occur in lingual tonsils.

Weight of the tonsils also very a great deal and they may range from 300 mg to 42 grams. So we can say that tonsils may remain in throat unnoticed for in the form of a big foreign object inside the throat. It is a disease that is mostly related to the young adults and children usually remain safe from this disease.

There are many theories about tonsillitis but we cannot for sure say what causes this disease. There are different theories about it and the one such theory is that tonsils develop inside the throat due to the presence of excessive dead white blood cells there. These cells combine to form cluster inside the throat that is called tonsil. Some others believe that the reason of tonsils is related to the presence of oral bacteria in throat.  There may be the one or the many causes of this disease but the most important question related to this disease is that its symptoms by which an ordinary person could know that he or she is suffering from the disease.

Diagnosis of tonsillitis is not an easy task and it becomes more difficult when the tonsils are small. Most of the doctors keep their judgment about declaring this disease reserve unless they do not get an assurance by an x ray or CT scan. But we can even judge someone suffering from this disease and the most important and a common tonsillitis symptom by which we can get alarmed of having someone tonsil is halitosis. Halitosis is simply explained as bad breath that means someone taking a difficult breath during sleeping or a usual loud noise is heard during sleeping of the patient. We get an impression that the patient is not comfortable in breathing.

Another tonsillitis symptom is pain in the throat and sometimes, the patient feels pain in throat. Some patients feel a metallic taste during eating and they remain unable to feel the true taste of the food. Throat closing or tight throat is another tonsillitis symptom that a number of patients of tonsils witness and there are a few patients who often face coughing fits. These are the patients that need treatment.  The patients who suffer from large tonsils often witness tonsil infection and they have to bear the pain of sore throat quite often. Such patients sometimes feel difficulty in swallowing food and ear ache is another serious tonsillitis symptom.

Tonsillitis Treatment is Possible Without Operation

Tonsillitis is one of those diseases that are not well known by the people because they often do not feel pain from this disease. It is one of those diseases whose cause is still undetermined for sure by the doctors. There are many views about the development of this disease and the most common of them are as of the presence of dead white blood cells inside the throat. It is thought by many that dead white blood cells of throat combine together to form a hard mass of tonsils.

Some people feel that fungus and bacteria play important role in diseases so the disease of tonsils is also due to oral bacteria present inside the throat. Some doctors consider the disease of tonsils a result of over activity of slavery glands. Mucus secretion is also regarded as one of the reasons of developing tonsils. Residual of enzyme action or remaining of hard food inside the throat are also considered as among the reasons of tonsils. Some people develop tonsils due to their allergy from dairy products and smoking without filter may also cause this disease. Children mostly remain safe from this disease as young adult are its most common prey.

It is not easy to diagnose tonsillitis and in most of the times, people do not feel a need to cure this disease. Usually small tonsils are developed inside the throat and the most serious of its effects is coughing fits but sometimes, giant tonsils develop inside the throat and they are a reason of a lot many problems like frequent tonsil infection or sore throat. Some people feel difficulty in swallowing food and some even face the problem of ear ache. Such patients need immediate treatment and there are certain ways to get tonsillitis treatment.

Treatments for tonsillitis through oral irrigator is very common among the patients of tonsils but use of electric irrigators is not recommended by many because it is not easy to control electric instruments and they work with too much force that can damage tonsils inside the throat. In such a situation, the patient may witness more difficulty and pain instead of getting tonsillitis treatment. Tap oral irrigators are the best one for the treatment of tonsils because water is used in it to cure the problem of tonsils. Water is pushed inside the affected area with pressure that can remove tonsils. It is one of the cheaper methods because only water is required in this system and it is free from electric devices. Laser therapy or laser cytolysis is another method to cure the patients of tonsils. Laser technology is used to decrease the affected area by tonsils. It is one of those treatments that are becoming very popular now a day and it is one of those methods where the patient feels lesser pain during tonsillitis treatment.  There are some patients who have an aggravated situation of the problem of tonsils and such patients do feel a lot much pain. Operation is the most viable option for such patients in the tonsillitis treatment.

Natural Remedies for Tonsillitis are More Useful Than the Advice of a Doctor

Tonsillitis is a disease that remains inactive mostly inside the throat. This is a disease that results from the accumulation of calcium and some other minerals inside the throat. Oval bacteria are also regarded as a reason to develop the disease of tonsillitis. Halitosis is a common symptom to know about the disease because bad breathing is usually common among such patients. It is difficult to know the exact reason of this disease so it is difficult to avert the danger of the disease but we can cure the disease in certain ways. There are many people who prefer for the operation in this disease but operation should be our last option and not the first one. There are many natural remedies for tonsil stones and many people cure the disease by this method.

We cannot leave our tonsil stones unattended because tonsils are an important part of our immune system. They provide a natural defense to our body from many infections by filtering bacteria. Many doctors advise to take corticosteroids in case of tonsil stones but there are a number of natural remedies for tonsillitis. The one such remedy is the use of fresh lime. We may use fresh lime in a glass of warm water. We should add the four teaspoons of honey in the warm water and half teaspoon of salt should also be added in the water. Sipping of this water is very helpful in many cases of tonsil stones.

Use of the seeds of fenugreek is also very beneficial in aggravated cases of tonsil stones. The two teaspoons of fenugreek seeds should be boiled in the one liter water for half an hour. Then let the water cool and the patient should take all water in a single day. Turmeric powder is another remedy for tonsillitis and a pinch of turmeric powder should be mixed in a glass of boiled milk. Pepper powder should also be added in the milk and the milk should be taken at night. This practice should continue for all but three nights. Banafsha flowers are also helpful for curing the disease of tonsil stones. Fifty grams of flower should be boiled with fifty milliliter of milk and then banafsha flowers should be filtered from milk. Filtered banafsha flowers should be fried and it should be clarified with butter. This paste should be worn round the throat as poultice and it practice should be done at night time. Juices of carrot, beet and cucumber are also helpful the curing the disease of tonsil stone. These juices can also be used separately and in combination. If the juices are being used in combination then we should take the three hundred and fifty milliliters of carrot juice, the one hundred milliliters of beet juice and the one hundred milliliters of cucumber juice. Warm water enema and cold pack and hot Epsom salts bath is also considered as very helpful natural cure for tonsillitis patients. Cold pack should be used after every two hours and hot Epsom should be used daily or on alternate days.