June 22-30, 2011 - Original Health Articles

"Balanced Diet": What Does It Mean for You?

If the thought of following a "balanced diet" has you so confused you're a bit, well, off balance, not to worry. The June issue of Diabetes Forecast, the magazine of the American Diabetes Association, outlines some simple steps for adopting a diet that's not just balanced, but tasty and easy to follow, too.

Heart Disease: Fight the Number One Killer

Although breast cancer is the disease women fear most, according to a study by the Society for Women's Health Research, heart disease is actually the number one killer of women—approximately 500,000 women die annually from heart disease—far surpassing the death rate of breast cancer, about 41,000 each year.

Aerobic Base Training: A Dying Concept?

Which provides the better path to fitness: Aerobic base training or interval training? In the competitive sports world, that's a loaded topic with strong opinions on either side of the question. For the average fitness buff, however, the answer might be both.

Give the Gift of Life: Become a Bone Marrow Donor

For cancer patients, a bone-marrow transplant can a life-saving procedure. For the lucky some, a close relative turns out to be a perfect match. The rest need to turn elsewhere to find a bone-marrow donor, a task that may not be easy. You can help simply by signing up to be a marrow donor through a national registry.

Eco-Friendly and Organic Beauty Salons: A Growing Trend

We all know going green is good for the planet, but could it also be the key to personal health and beauty?  Environmentally-conscious beauty is a growing trend that's inspiring many beauty salon owners and customers to embrace eco-friendly products and services.

7 Tips for Coping With Fibromyalgia-Related Fatigue

Fatigue is one of the hallmark symptoms of fibromyalgia and many experience it most acutely in the morning. What can you do about morning fatigue due to fibromyalgia? Try these seven tips to start your days off right. 1. Get a good night's rest. Insomnia, restless leg syndrome, pain, and frequent waking are common with fibromyalgia.

Why You Need to Love Yourself Before Loving Others

A satisfying relationship with a special someone doesn't happen overnight. If you're looking for love, you may wonder why it's just not happening. You may find the process much easier if you learn to love yourself first, experts say. "If you don't put yourself first, then you are denying your abilities to the world around you," says Carolyn Bates, a certified personal life coach, or ICF.

How Arthritis Affects the Lungs

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease that primarily manifests itself as painful, stiff joints. But because it's a systemic illness, it can affect other parts of the body. The lungs are one area where problems often surface. In fact, people can sometimes find themselves suffering from lung problems before they're even aware of any joint issues.

How to Adjust to Life Without Antidepressants

Antidepressants are the most commonly prescribed medication in the country, so mental health experts are trying to understand if, when, and how patients should cease taking them. Unfortunately, despite the dramatic increase in use, there isn't a lot of information about life after antidepressants.

Considering Composting? Tips to Keep in Mind

Instead of filling up landfills with food scraps and lawn clippings you've tossed into the trash can, you can compost, or recycle them into an organic fertilizer for your garden and lawn. Sounds great, but is it really worth the time, effort and, in some cases, money, it takes to get it started?  Simply put, compost is decomposed waste.

Hydrotherapy: Will it Work for You?

If you suffer from arthritis you may want to explore hydrotherapy. Hydrotherapy, which is simply the use of water as a medical treatment, may ease your arthritis symptoms and help you function more easily on a day-to-day basis. Hydrotherapy has a long history.

Everyday Products and Cancer Risk

Every morning you brush your teeth, take a shower, and apply deodorants, creams, makeup, and other personal care products. Did you know, however, that many of these products are a major source of human exposure to dangerous chemicals? According to the Environmental Working Group (EWG), a nonprofit that conducts independent research to expose health and environmental threats, the average consumer uses 10 personal care products daily that contain about 126 distinct ingredients.

4 Ways to Dine Out Without Damaging Your Diet

Let's face it. Dining out is wonderful. A server is there to cater to your every whim. You're provided with a delicious meal with all the upside and none of the work. What's more, you're given options: healthy and otherwise. Do you opt for the grilled chicken with asparagus and winter squash mash? Or do you go with the risotto cakes and polenta? While you may think you've chosen the healthier chicken dish, studies find that this isn't the case.

How Your Work Schedule Affects Your Mood

Work in the United States has become a 24-hour phenomenon. Many workers, such as healthcare providers, must be available at all hours, and increasingly, companies are adding shifts to accommodate customers and vendors in different time zones. Non-standard work schedules, which includes evenings, nights, weekends, and shift work are common.

Birthmarks: Facts vs. Myths

Most of us have some kind of birthmark, whether it's a tiny spot no one ever sees or a prominent port-wine stain. But very few of us know the facts about these marks and if they carry any associated risks. Here are some birthmark FAQs and clarifications of common misconceptions.

The Facts about the FDA's Painkiller Abuse Strategy

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has launched a new risk evaluation and mitigation strategy (REMS) to combat widespread prescription painkiller abuse. How will it impact patients who take prescription medications for chronic pain?  Here, the facts to help you work with the FDA's painkiller abuse strategy.

8 Summer Party Tips for Diabetics

Between the backyard barbecues, pool parties, and alfresco cocktail soirées, it can seem like summer is just one continuous and tempting opportunity to feast. But if you don't want to see your blood sugar go sky-high and your weight creep gradually upwards when you get together with friends, resolve now to party with care.

Is It a Senior Moment or Something More Serious?

You've done it again: lost your car keys somewhere in your house, or forgotten the name of a neighborhood acquaintance, or opened the refrigerator without having the slightest idea of what you were hoping to find. Everyone of a certain age has these so-called "senior moments," and many people make jokes about them to excuse their own forgetfulness.

Could Diabetes Drugs Help Your Heart?

If you have type 2 diabetes, would you be interested to know about medications that not only help stabilize blood sugar, but also appear to be protective against heart disease? Research is showing such medications may already be on the market. A Danish study involved more than 100,000 individuals who took oral medications to treat their diabetes.

What You Should Know About Food Expiration Dates

You take a container of yogurt from your refrigerator and notice that the date on the package is a few days beyond the date you're planning on eating it. Should you throw it out? Well, it all depends on the type of date stamped on the container and how well the product was handled, according to the USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service.

Your Guide to Asthma Medications

Don't let asthma get in the way of your daily activities. There are multiple asthma treatment methods available by prescription that are worth considering. Some of the most common approaches to managing asthma include asthma inhalers that contain fast-acting relief medication to open up your airways, inhaled steroids for long-term control of your respiratory functioning, and allergy control medications to manage your immune system response to various triggers that set off asthma symptoms.

Don't Get Burned by Your Sunscreen Allergy

The American Academy of Dermatology stresses the importance of using sunscreen before stepping outdoors to reduce your risk of skin cancer. But what if you're allergic to sunscreen? Does that mean you have to forego summer pleasures or put yourself at risk of getting burned? Absolutely not.

5 On-the-Go Makeup Bag Essentials

Is your portable makeup bag stuffed to the brim with products you hardly use? Or perhaps it's skimpy and empty-looking—missing the products you actually need? Organize your makeup bag with these five essentials to keep you looking fresh all day.

Strange Things That Can Happen to Your Breasts

Your breasts put up with a lot. It's only natural that once in a while, they'll react. So, what can you do about strange but common occurrences such as rashes, pimples, moles, and ingrown hairs? Women are trained to worry about lumps, bumps, puckers, and other signs of breast cancer.

Want to Be a Hospice Volunteer? Here's What's Involved

If you want to make a difference to a terminally ill person and her family, consider becoming a hospice volunteer. You'll be in good company: The Hospice Foundation of America estimates that there are more than 460,000 hospice volunteers in the U.S. But what exactly do you do as a hospice volunteer? And do you need any special qualifications? Here's what you need to know before taking on this important job.

Give Back: Volunteer to Help Kids

Volunteering can be powerful. If you're open to it, you'll wind up learning new skills, making new friends, and even changing lives—yours as well as someone else's.  Here are some ideas to get you started. Volunteer Your Time If you love babies and have time to give, hospitals with neonatal intensive care units (NICU) are often in need of "cuddlers.

The Benefits and Risks of Barefoot Running

It's safe to say that resorting to the primitive practices of our prehistoric ancestors is typically viewed as a bad thing. We evolved, discovered, and invented our way into a life in which we are no longer dependent on the hunt to bring us food, nor do we fear being stalked by predators.

Stressed Out? Take a Hike

When faced with a 40-plus hour work week, bills to pay, and trekking the kids to-and-fro, how do you let loose? This summer, make it a point to relieve your stress by utilizing the great outdoors. Exercise has long been touted as an excellent and natural way to manage stress.

Commonly Misdiagnosed Digestive Problems

Digestive problems tend to disguise themselves as other conditions, and as a result, it can be difficult to get an accurate diagnosis. But your health depends on it. Celiac Disease Perhaps the most often misdiagnosed chronic digestive problem is celiac disease, which affects as many as 1 in 133 people in the U.

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