Archive for the ‘PreDisease’ Category

Preventing and Treating Gout Naturally

Sunday, April 18th, 2010

Gout is a condition which causes pain, redness and swelling in a joint, usually a toe or foot, although any joint can be affected by gout. Gout is caused when uric acid crystals form in the joint after being deposited from the bloodstream. Uric acid results from the breakdown of purines; therefore, eating foods that are low in purine decreases uric acid in the bloodstream and prevents gout (or so the theory goes).

  • For people attempting to eat a diet which is low in purine, the following tips may be helpful:
  • Cider vinegar is thought to lower uric acid levels
  • Drinking lots of water helps to flush uric acid from the body, as does eating a diet high in fiber
  • Eat foods high in vitamins E and C, supplement with vitamins if your diet is deficient in either of these
  • Avoid: cauliflower, mushrooms, asparagus, red meat, shell fish, poultry, mackerel and sardines, as these foods are high in purine
  • Cherries, blueberries and strawberries are good for gout

Repeated attacks of gout may lead to permanent joint damage, therefore purines should be avoided as much as possible. Medications to treat gout once it has flared are available, but some have unwelcome side effects. Prevention of gout is preferable to treatment of gout.

PreArthos is an all-natural botanical formulation designed to treat joint pain safely, with no side effects.

What is Menorrhagia?

Saturday, April 17th, 2010

Menorrhagia is the technical medical term for heavy menstrual bleeding. Menorrhagia can occur for many reasons, but in the absence of any true pathology menorrhagia is usually due to an anovulatory cycle, or a cycle in which no egg is released. Women in perimenopause are more likely to experience hormonal changes that lead to anovulatory cycles and heavy menstrual bleeding.

Signs and symptoms may include:

  • Periods that last longer than 7 days
  • Menstrual flow that contains large blood clots
  • Menstrual periods that interfere with your ability to live your life
  • Menstrual flow that requires double protection (i.e. wearing a tampon and a pad)
  • Bleeding that soaks through one menstrual pad per hour (or more) for several hours
  • Signs and symptoms of anemia (fatigue, weakness, shortness of breath with exertion)

Many women experience the occasional heavy period, but if every period is excessively heavy or lasts longer than a week anemia may occur, sometimes necessitating a blood transfusion. Many women do not seek help for menorrhagia, believing that it is normal. If menorrhagia interferes with quality of life or leads to anemia, treatment should be sought.

PreMenora is an all-natural twice-daily botanical formulation designed to relieve the symptoms of perimenopause, including menorrhagia.

Source: Menorrhagia (heavy menstrual bleeding)

Statin Comes With New Warning

Tuesday, April 6th, 2010

The FDA is warning that Zocor, a statin used to lower cholesterol, may cause muscle damage when taken at higher doses. People of Asian descent may be more at risk if they take niacin in combination with Zocor. The generic name for Zocor is simvistatin.

All statins carry a certain risk of muscle damage, but this risk seems to be higher in people taking 80 mg of Zocor. In the Search study, 1% of people taking 80 mg of Zocor experienced muscle damage, as opposed to 0.02% of people taking lower doses of the drug. Rhabdomyolysis occurred in a very small number of patients taking Zocor at the higher dose. Rhabdomyolysis is the sometimes fatal destruction of muscle tissue, often resulting in kidney damage.

Symptoms of muscle damage may include:

  • Weakness
  • Muscle pain
  • Elevated creatinine kinase enzyme, as determined by blood sampling
  • Fatigue
  • Dark or red urine

All statins carry the risk of muscle damage, and patients taking these drugs should be aware of the above symptoms. Should these symptoms occur, notify your physician immediately.

PreLipid is an all-natural, twice-daily botanical formulation proven to lower cholesterol naturally.

Source: FDA Warns of Zocor Risk to Muscles

Is Irritability a Natural Outcome of Menopause?

Sunday, April 4th, 2010

Many women report feeling irritated more easily and more often during perimenopause and menopause. In fact, it is so common that it has become the brunt of many jokes. However, feeling irritable all the time is not funny to the women experiencing this symptom and may often lead to its evil twin, depression.

There are differing schools of thought about what causes irritability in perimenopause and menopause. Hormone fluctuations are thought to play a large role in irritability, much the same as they do during the time before menstruation begins for some women (as in pre-menstrual syndrome). Others believe that concomitant changes in the body during menopause that result in unwanted symptoms (i.e. hot flashes, night sweats, and sleep disturbances) are to blame for a women’s moodiness.

There may be other reasons as well. Perimenopause marks a drastic change in a woman’s body and may lead to lower self-esteem and body issues. Perimenopause may be seen as synonymous with aging. Women who have not accomplished all that they have hoped for may feel as if time is running out, and women who had hoped to have children (or more children) may be faced with the likelihood that they may not accomplish their goal. All of these factors, combined with physical changes, may lead to irritation and feelings of depression for some women.

Women who experience these symptoms should know that they are not alone. Although some women sail through perimenopause and menopause with nary a scrape, others experience all the symptoms in the book (and some that they didn’t know about). The most important thing to remember about menopause is that it doesn’t last forever, and negative feelings will eventually fade away. If feelings of irritability or depression linger and affect a woman’s life negatively, help should be sought.

PreMenora is a twice-daily all natural botanical formulation designed to ease the symptoms of perimenopause.

TMJ Pain and Arthritis

Saturday, April 3rd, 2010

The temperomandibular joint is not a joint that is commonly affected by arthritis, but when it is it can cause considerable pain and dysfunction. Talking, swallowing and chewing can become very painful activities, and because it is almost impossible to rest this joint, pain may be unrelenting.

The TMJ is the joint that joins the mandible (lower jaw) to the skull, so pain in this area can also cause pain in the ear. People who experience TMJ pain often believe that the source of their pain is their teeth. If someone is already known to have arthritis, the problem is generally easier to diagnose.

Pain can often be relieved with pain medication and heat, which may relax the joint. When these remedies fail, doctors may opt to perform arthrocentesis, flushing the joint with anesthetic and sterile fluids to rid the joint of any fluids that result from inflammation. They may instill steroids to counter any further inflammation. If this procedure is unsuccessful, surgeons may opt to perform arthroplasty, sometimes replacing the joint completely. Although arthroplasty is generally successful, it is not without risk, and less invasive measures should be attempted first.

TMJ pain can cause considerable pain and distress to the person who experiences it. Early diagnosis and treatment can result in improved function of the joint and relief of pain.

PreArthros is a twice-daily botanical formulation designed to ease arthritis pain naturally, with no side effects.

Source: TMJ Disease

The Value of HgA1c Testing

Friday, March 26th, 2010

Identification of diabetes is accomplished through the use of tests that measure glucose levels after a person has ingested glucose (oral glucose tolerance test) or levels of glucose in the blood after fasting for a number of hours (fasting plasma glucose test). The HgA1c test is a relative newcomer to the diabetes testing arena.

Scientists now believe that the HgA1c test, which is a measure of glucose attached to hemoglobin, the cells that carry oxygen in the blood, may be a more accurate way of both diagnosing diabetes and controlling it. The HgA1c test provides a picture of glucose levels for the preceding 2 or3 months, and varies less that fasting glucose levels. Thus, the HgA1c test can be administered with no preparation by the patient and provides a clearer picture of glucose control over the long term.

Normal levels of HgA1c are less than 5.0 for people who do not have diabetes. Those whose levels are between 5.0 and 6.25 are said to be pre-diabetic, and are at risk of developing diabetes without modification of risk factors (i.e. weight loss). Levels greater than 6.25 indicate diabetes. Researchers believe that measuring HgA1c is a more accurate diagnostic tool and is also of greater value in monitoring those who already have diabetes.

PreCrea is an all-natural botanical formula taken to reduce blood sugar levels and promote weight loss. It can be used by those who have been diagnosed with pre-diabetes to help them avoid developing type 2 diabetes.

Source: Glycated Hemoglobin Tests See Increasing Use

Fatigue and Menopause

Wednesday, March 24th, 2010

Fatigue can be one of the more disturbing aspects of perimenopause, affecting women to a significant degree and impacting all areas of life, including physical, emotional, and social aspects. Many women describe the fatigue of menopause as “crushing” and find it difficult to cope with daily life. Fatigue can also worsen other symptoms of perimenopause, or the perception of these symptoms.

Fatigue in perimenopause is thought to be a result of decreasing levels of sex hormones, particularly estrogen and progesterone, which may cause sleep disturbances. Difficulty falling asleep and staying asleep may occur, and hot flashes that strike in the night (night sweats) may add to the problem.

There are some things that may help, including:

  • Keeping your room at a comfortable temperature- staying cool during sleep may help you avoid night sweats. Try using a fan or keeping the window open, as well as avoiding sheets that may increase sweating, such as silk sheets.
  • Stick to a routine- keeping to a regular routine may help you get a better sleep. Go to bed at the same time every night. Try a relaxing activity before sleeping, such as reading or meditating.
  • Avoid stimulants close to bedtime- avoid drinking alcohol, smoking, or exercising right before bed, as these activities may stimulate you, making it more difficult to fall asleep.
  • Nap during the day- a short nap during the day may recharge your batteries and leave you feeling refreshed. Avoid sleeping long periods of time during the day, as this may make it more difficult to fall asleep at night.

PreMenora and PreMenora+ are all-natural botanical supplements formulated to decrease unpleasant symptoms of perimenopause, including fatigue.

Study: People with Prediabetes Seldom Attempt to Alter Risk Factors

Tuesday, March 16th, 2010

It is a well-known fact that people with the condition known as prediabetes can reduce their risk of developing type 2 diabetes, a condition in which fasting blood sugar levels and glucose tolerance test levels are elevated but are still within “normal” range, by modifying risk factors such as weight, diet and exercise.

A new study from researchers at the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) and the NIDDK (National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases) found that almost 30% of Americans over the age of 20 had prediabetes, but only a small percentage of these individuals (7.3%) were aware that they had the condition and less than half of these had had their blood tests repeated in the previous three years.

Those with prediabetes were more likely to:

  • be male
  • older in age
  • have a first-generation family member with type 2 diabetes
  • be overweight
  • have high blood pressure and other risk factors for cardiovascular disease

The take-home message of the research is that there needs to be an increased awareness of what prediabetes is and greater measures to prevent diabetes from developing, including greater promotion and support of healthy lifestyle choices.

PreCrea is a twice-a-day botanical formula designed to help reduce blood sugar levels and promote weight loss.

Source: Diabetes Risk Reduction Behaviors Among U.S. Adults With Prediabetes, Geiss et al, American Journal of Preventive Medicine, April 2010

Hormone Replacement Therapy Linked to Lung Cancer

Friday, March 12th, 2010

New research published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology has discovered that women who take HRT (hormone replacement therapy) may be at higher risk of developing lung cancer.

The large study, which included 36,588 women taking HRT containing both estrogen and progesterone, found that post-menopausal women taking HRT had a 50% higher risk of lung cancer. Women who took only estrogen without progesterone (unopposed estrogen) did not appear to be at higher risk of developing lung cancer.

The length of time a woman took HRT was related to their risk of developing lung cancer, as well as the later stage at which the disease was diagnosed. Other factors known to contribute to the development of lung cancer were considered, such as age and smoking status.

New recommendations for HRT state that women should take HRT for the shortest time possible, but there may be many women who have taken HRT for long periods of time, before the studies were done which pointed to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease with long-term HRT therapy. These women may be at higher risk for lung cancer and this begs the question: could HRT therapy be part of the reason that lung cancer rates have been increasing in women?

PreMenora is an all-natural botanical formulation that is taken twice daily to ease the symptoms of menopause.

Source: Hormone therapy linked to lung cancer risk

Prostate Screening: The Pros and Cons

Wednesday, March 10th, 2010

New guidelines for prostate screening state that men aged 50 and older should discuss their risk of prostate cancer with their physician and decide whether the benefits of screening for prostate cancer is greater than the risks. Prostate cancer is the second-leading cause of cancer deaths in men; in 2009, approximately 27,000 men lost their lives to prostate cancer.

The problem lies in the fact that really effective prostate screening tests have not been developed. At present, prostate screening consists of performing a rectal exam to check for prostate irregularities and a blood test, the PSA, or prostate-specific antigen. The problem with the PSA blood test is that it can yield false-positive results. Many prostate cancers are slow growing and not immediately life-threatening, meaning that men may undergo treatments for prostate cancer that can have potentially devastating side effects, such as impotence and incontinence. The other side of the coin is that not testing may result in some cancers not being diagnosed.

The American Cancer Society is focusing on education, recommending that screening counseling should be provided prior to screening taking place, so that men are aware of the shortcomings of prostate screening, as well as the risks of not screening. The bottom line? Men should be armed with the most current information and should decide for themselves whether or not they should be screened for prostate cancer.

Source: Let men decide on prostate screening, cancer society says