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5 bad habits that are making you tired

5 bad habits that are making you tired


Do you get through your days full of energy and a positive attitude, or do you find yourself dragging your feet before lunchtime? If you’re always feeling rundown, you may have adopted some bad habits that are making you tired. Findings from a recent National Sleep Foundation poll show that almost two-thirds of American adults say they aren’t getting at least seven hours of sleep, on average, each night, and technology could be to blame. Still, a lack of sleep could be just one reason why you’re not feeling your best each day.

Here are five bad habits that could be making you tired:

#1: Your Coffee or Soda Addiction

All that caffeine in your favorite coffee concoction or can of soda may give you that buzz you crave, but too much caffeine will tax your adrenal glands and you could end up feeling tired and restless. As your tolerance for caffeinated beverages increases, it will be even harder to break out of the cycle because you’ll need more just to get your buzz. If you drink more than four cups per day (or the equivalent), it’s time to cut back, say experts at the Mayo Clinic.

#2: Slouching All Day

Poor posture is the primary cause of many health problems, and fatigue is high on the list. Dr. Adrian Couzner, a chiropractor at Chirosports in Sydney points out that poor posture contributes to fatigue because it reduces mobility in your joints and muscles, and drains you of energy. When you slouch, you’re making your body work harder just to get through simple movements. Stand up straight and watch your posture when sitting down to enjoy more energy throughout your day.

#3: Shallow Breathing

Shallow breathing limits the amount of oxygen flowing to your brain and body, which may be making you feel worn out. If you work at a computer all day, watch your breathing. It’s easy to get into the habit of shallow breathing when you’re not moving around much for several hours at a time. Take frequent breaks so that you can stretch, walk around and engage in some deep breathing exercises to get that oxygen flowing again.

#4: Snacking on Processed Food

Nadine Saubers, author of “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Fighting Fatigue”, says that a diet of processed foods is a major trigger of fatigue. Eating more whole foods, and taking the time to prepare and cook “real” food may just give your energy level that much-needed boost.

#5: Holding on to Anger

While you may have your physical habits in check, make sure you’re not guilty of bad emotional habits that could be causing fatigue. Holding on to anger or not releasing stress in a healthy way could be causing tension in your body and draining you of much-needed energy. Give yourself time to deal with emotional issues so that they don’t interfere with your daily life. Whether this involves talking to someone you trust, writing a letter to the person you’re angry with (and not sending it), or confronting an issue that has been on your mind lately, find a way to let go and move on.

Plantar Fasciitis Common, Painful, Treatable

Q:My doctor diagnosed me with plantar fasciitis several months ago and it still bothers me. Will it ever go away?

A:Plantar fasciitis is aptly named: it is an inflammation of the plantar fascia, the thick band of tissue on the bottom of the foot running from the heel to the base of the toes. As you know only too well, the inflammation results in pain in the heel, typically worst with the first morning steps or after extended periods of sitting and then dissipating after walking a bit; but it may progress throughout the day.

Dr. Richard Marks is an orthopedic surgeon, Director of the Division of Foot & Ankle Surgery and the Foot & Ankle Fellowship, and an Associate Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery at the Medical College of Wisconsin.

He notes that plantar fasciitis is more common as we age, in the overweight, after an episode of strenuous walking or running, in individuals with tight heelcords, flat feet, or high arches, and when shoes fit poorly or have lost their support.

Dr. Marks tells me that, very likely, your plantar fasciitis will go away, although it may take 8-16 weeks to do so. He employs a number of different therapies in his work with patients who experience this condition: stretching exercises, change of footwear, specific training techniques for the athlete, and sometimes initial rest from activities.

Often, he prescribes an “anti-inflammatory” medication like ibuprofen (Advil or Motrin) or a night splint. Physical therapists can help teach the stretching exercises, which should be performed 4-5 times per day. Occasionally, a shoe insert is helpful. In severe cases, Dr. Marks injects cortisone or plans a surgery to remove the degenerated fascia.

Julie L. Mitchell, MD, MS, is an Assistant Professor of Medicine at the Medical College of Wisconsin. She practices internal medicine at the Froedtert & Medical College General Internal Medicine Clinic – East.

Reference:

Mayo Clinic- Plantar fasciitis

Health-guidances.com – Night splints for plantar fasciitis

 

Vitamin b Niacin Overdose and Toxicity


Common cases of vitamin B3 niacin overdose and toxicity arise from excess consumption of niacin supplements or counteractions when taken alongside other supplements. Overdose and toxicity cases may also arise when pre-existing medical conditions such as diabetes interfere with normal functions of vitamin B3 supplements. This is because it is unlikely for individuals to suffer from an overdose and toxicity of vitamin B3 derived from dietary sources. Niacin is water soluble, thus when consumed, the surplus is excreted through the urine. Therefore, it can be deduced that, consuming vitamin B3 in excess, or vitamin B overdose may lead to toxicity.

Because of the health benefits associated with vitamin B3, most people tend to forget that it can be overdosed leading to toxicity. Consumption of vitamin B3 in excess turns the skin reddish. This is because vitamin B3 is supposed to enhance the dilation of blood capillaries to allow sufficient blood flow. Therefore, an excess consumption of vitamin B3 will result to over dilation of the blood vessels hence rapid flow of blood. Other common symptoms of vitamin B3 overdose and toxicity include feeling itchy and having an irritable skin. This especially occurs to skin areas that are in constant contact with clothes.

Vitamin B3 is vital for the conversion of carbohydrates to glucose so as to enhance energy production. This can be detrimental especially to diabetic individuals when vitamin B3 is taken in excess. A high concentration of glucose in the body triggers production of excess insulin which in turn causes development of diabetes. In addition, an overdose of niacin results to development of digestion complications and problems including diarrhea, cramping and vomiting just to mention but a few. Experts also believe that overdosing niacin for a long time may result to gout.

From the above facts it is thus crucial for individuals to remember that supplements, though helpful to the body, can also cause adverse results if not consumed properly. It is not right for individuals to assume that vitamin B3 supplements will provide them with the required nutrient so they can be taken as one desires. Individuals should strictly follow dosage directions given to them by a licensed health care provider or pharmacists. On the other hand, when seeking for medical help, it is vital to mention all the supplements you are taking for your doctor to know the exact drugs (that will not interfere with the supplements) to prescribe.

Sources:

WebMD- NIACIN AND NIACINAMIDE (VITAMIN B3)

Mayo Clinic- Niacin (vitamin B3, nicotinic acid), Niacinamide

University of Maryland Medical Center- Vitamin B3 (Niacin)

Health Guidances – Niacin Overdose

 

What are the causes of Water Retention


Water retention, or edema, is a common problem which causes puffiness, bloating, tenderness, weight gain, cellulite (a combination of fat and water) and swelling in the arms, hands, feet or legs. Our bodies are approximately 80% water. Water is necessary for the body’s a natural cleansing process. Oxygen-rich water passes from the capillaries (blood vessels) into surrounding tissues to nourish the cells and flush out any toxins.

Normally, the body can maintain the proper balance. Water retention occurs when there is a problem with this process. Too much water may leak from the capillaries or the water and toxins may not be able to get flushed, so it accumulates in the tissue spaces between cells. These tissues spaces then expand, allowing more and more water to accumulate.

With the rare exception of athletes who accidentally water-log themselves during prolonged strenuous activity, water retention is rarely caused by drinking too much water. In fact, most often it is the complete opposite. The most common factors of water retention are dehydration, histamine, hormones, medication and diet.

Dehydration: When most people think of dehydration, they envision the obvious signs such as parched lips and sunken eyes. Water retention due to dehydration seems like an oxymoron, however the body will store whatever it feels deprived of. This includes water.

The four most common dehydration culprits are:

1) Sodium, found in salt and processed meats, canned foods and packaged snacks

2) Coffee/tea

3) Alcohol

4) Ibuprofen

To ensure that the body flushes properly instead of storing excess water, drinking a minimum of 8 glasses of water daily is recommended.

Histamine: Anyone who has been stung by a bee or mosquito is familiar with the puffy swollen result of histamine. In reaction to food allergies, the body’s immune system produces histamine which makes the capillaries more permeable, allowing more fluid to pass into the tissues. Because water retention seems like such a mild reaction to an allergy, most people don’t know that they may have a food allergy. Food testing can help determine which foods may be causing a histamine reaction.

Hormones: Certain types of hormones react to sodium levels in the body and cause water retention. These hormones include insulin, cortisone, estrogen (oestrogen) and progesterone. Certain medication or painkillers can reduce the levels of these hormones. Please, consult your physician before starting any medication.

Medication: Certain medication can cause water retention, including steroids, antidepressants, hormone replacement medication, and some drugs used to lower blood pressure. Some natural or dietary remedies may help to combat water retention. Please consult a physician before stopping or switching medication.

Diet: Whether its a low calorie diet or simply poor eating habits, the foods we eat (or don’t eat) affect the body. Low calorie diets are designed to reduce protein intake which pulls excess fluid out of the tissues and causes swelling.

Salt, bad saturated fats and sugar cause water retention. Salt retains water in the body. Sugar molecules retain sodium (salt), and thus water. Bad saturated fats are found in fried foods, processed foods and canned vegetables.

Good saturated fats, found in healthy proteins such as egg yolks, dark meat poultry, organ meats, beef, veal and pork are important for the body. An increase in fibre and eating plenty of raw fruit and vegetables is a great start in the reduction of water retention.

Most types of water retention respond well to dietary changes. A few adjustments to diet may be all one needs to reduce or eliminate water retention.

Source:

http://www.healthguidances.com/natural-ways-to-reduce-water-retention/

http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/water.htm

The best Natural Laxatives


If the waste disposal contractors fail to remove garbage on a regular basis, it starts to smell, which is very unpleasant for local residents. Similarly, if your body’s waste disposal system is not working properly, and you’re not eliminating waste from your body with regular visits to the bathroom, the effects on your general health can be very unpleasant indeed.

The good news is, a few simple changes to your diet can put things right without the need for medical assistance. Increase the fibre in your diet by eating plenty of fruit and wholegrains. These are just some of the best natural laxatives.

Dried fruits

Prunes come top of this list, but other dried fruits such as figs, raisins, dates and apricots can also help to ‘keep things moving.’ Dried fruits are full of fibre, and it’s easy to include some in your diet.

Water and other drinks

Dehydration can cause constipation, so ensure you’re drinking enough fluids, particularly if you live in a hot country. Fruit juices such as prune, apple and pear may also help.

Fruit

You should be eating plenty of fruit as part of a healthy diet anyway, and increasing your intake of fruit will keep your bowel habits regular. Mangoes, apricots, peaches, plums pears and pineapples all have natural laxative properties. For real ‘going power,’ try rhubarb.

Olives and olive oil

Olives are natural laxatives, and olive oil will help to soften the stools when you go to the loo. As an added benefit, olives and olive oil are heart healthy foods.

Wholemeal and whole grain products

Switch to wholemeal bread and opt for brown pasta and rice. Team your brown rice with a curry, as spicy foods have laxative properties. Exchange your breakfast bowl of cornflakes for a high fibre cereal, and add some dried fruit.

Beans

Baked beans and chick peas are high in fibre and protein, and low in fat, so they are a healthy choice as a natural laxative. If you’re not used to including beans in your diet, you may experience temporary bloating and wind, but this should soon pass.

Exercise

That’s right – exercise! Increasing activity levels will boost circulation and metabolism, thus increasing the digestive process and moving food through the body. Even a moderate amount of exercise will make a difference if you’ve previously led a sedentary lifestyle.

If you eat a varied diet, which includes plenty of fruit, vegetables and fibre, constipation should not be a problem. If it is, you need to increase your intake of natural laxative foods. The good news is, sweet treats such as dark chocolate and licorice are also natural laxatives, so you can indulge your sweet tooth while you cosset your colon!

 

Los Angeles Study on Obese Teens and Type 2 Diabetes: Facts about Teen Obesity and Diabetes

Obese teens are already having problems with Type 2 Diabetes and managing it can prove to be even harder. Drug treatment alone does not help. More than the drugs are the lifestyle changes that teens should make to decrease the rapid progress of the disease or totally preventing it. Learn more about the facts that you need to know about Teen Obesity and Type 2 Diabetes to know how you can prevent it from happening to your teen.

A latest research in Los Angeles is once again tapping every parent’s awareness about diabetes among their teens, especially overweight teens. This research aimed to look into the prevalence of obese teens and the increased risks of Type 2 Diabetes. It also employed different types of treatment that may help an overweight teen manage Type 2 Diabetes. The research proved that not just one treatment will work for Type 2 Diabetes and having a healthy lifestyle as early as possible is still the ultimate key.

Facts about Teen Obesity and Type 2 Diabetes

Fact #1: There is an increasing rate of teen obesity in the US today. It has grown three times from 1980 to 2010 and there is one in every three teens that is diagnosed as obese. 25% of children are obese and obesity has been linked to Type 2 Diabetes. It only goes to follow that with the increased rate of obesity in teens, the risk of Type 2 Diabetes and other health conditions is increasing as well. A teen with an obese parent is also at risk of becoming obese as genes also play a role in weight gain.

Fact #2: The primary cause of obesity is unhealthy eating and lack of physical activity. In this day and age of computers, video games, and the Internet, there is no wonder that our teens are less physically active and have unhealthy diets. Most teens can spend hours in front of the computer and munch on chips and junk food while surfing or playing. Healthy eating and regular exercise should be promoted even to young children because children can continue with these habits later on and earn the healthy benefits as they age.

Fact #3: Kids and teens that are already obese at age 10 may most likely be obese in their adult years. Obese kids and teens may already have unhealthy eating habits formed early and such habits may not be that be easy to change anymore as they age and mature. Old, unhealthy habits die hard and it’s sad that obesity and diabetes are the results of these kinds of habits. The risk of suffering from Type 2 Diabetes is already high in your obese 10 year old and the complications do not change when they are adults.

Fact #4: Type 2 Diabetes is an aggressive and prevalent disease among obese teens. An obese teen may have problems with insulin resistance, when the body does not use insulin properly and insulin becomes less effective, because of the excess and increasing fat in the teen’s body. The body needs to produce just the correct amount of insulin in the body for the body to be able to utilize this insulin to its optimum level. Being overweight does not help in both production and function of the insulin.

Fact #5: Type 2 Diabetes has long-term health complications that your obese teen will have to endure and be wary of until his old age. The risks of coronary heart disease, kidney disease, eye disease and blindness, nerve damage and stroke are high in obese teens also suffering from Type 2 Diabetes. Obesity and Type 2 Diabetes may also be the reason for a shorter life span, anxiety, and even depression among kids. Any teen subjected to emotional stress because of their being obese and sick with diabetes leads to an unhealthy and unhappy teenage life.

Fact #6: Type 2 Diabetes cannot be treated solely with pills or drugs as what the study in Los Angeles has proven. The study concentrated on 3 types of treatment which all involved the use of the drug metformin, a drug known to aid in lowering the blood sugar levels. Aside from treating with metformin, dieting and exercising, plus another drug, Avandia, were also used in the treatment. The conclusion is that, lowering the blood sugar level with the drug is easy especially with metformin, but the problem lies with maintaining the low sugar level and controlling the increase and the weight gain of the obese teens.

Preventing Teen Obesity and Type 2 Diabetes

    • Promote a healthy diet at a very young age until the teenage years.

 

    • Make exercise a part of your teen’s healthy routines.

 

    • Constantly educate your teen about the benefits of a healthy lifestyle.

 

    • Encourage your teen to be become more involved in physical activities.

 

    • Guide your obese and diabetic teen in managing his weight and diabetes.

 

    • Take the necessary drug treatment and lifestyle changes to deal with diabetes.

 

    • Set a good example of healthy living to your teens.

 

The ultimate key to preventing any health condition from happening is to start living a healthy lifestyle. This could start at a very young age when parents are able to control the diet and activities of their children. Teens may be harder to control in this sense but if you educate, inform, and guide your teens towards healthy eating, you wouldn’t have to worry about raising an obese and diabetic teen.

Can Proper Attic Ventilation or an Attic Fan Reduce Energy Costs in Homes?

If you’ve ever needed to get into the attic space of your home during the middle of a hot summer day in Atlanta, you know that it’s a dangerous place up there! Attic temperatures can easily reach 135 degrees or more, and having that heat trapped inside the attic is like putting a heating blanket 18 inches above your head!

In this Atlanta HVAC article, we want to take a look at one of the easy and low cost ways you can reduce some of the strain on your home air conditioning system, and look at how an attic vent fan can reduce energy costs for cooling your Atlanta home.

The Problem with Attics in the Summer

Attics are an area of most homes that is unconditioned space. Meaning, there is no air conditioning or heating of the attic space, and it simply heats up based on outside temps. Attic ventilation is important year round, but in the summer, can easily help you reduce cooling costs!

Just imagine when the temp reaches 90 outside, it could be as hot as 130-140 degrees in your attic, without proper ventilation. By installing an attic ventilator, you will allow (and help) the hot air trapped in your attic space to vent out, and cool off considerably! It may not get below 90 degrees up there, but at least it wont be a 150 degree oven!

Types of Attic Ventilators

There are 3 main types of attic ventilators commonly found in residential use. Electric powered, which is hard wired into your homes electric system. Solar powered, which gets all its power from a small panel that converts the sunshine to energy. And Turbine vents, which are driven by the heated air in your attic and spin with no power at all.

In addition to the types of power for your attic vent, you can also choose from a vent that mounts directly onto your sloped or flat roof, or you can install an attic vent to one of the gables of your home, behind a louvered vent that allows for air to flow through it.

Solar attic vents are desirable since they use no electricity, however, they don’t work very well on cloudy days, they are known to move much less air and they tend to cost 3-4 times the amount of a standard electric vent fan at the time of purchase, making potential saving much less, if at all!

Attic Vent Fan Installation

In our opinion, powered, gable mounted attic vents are the easiest to install for most handyman homeowners, since almost every home has a vent already on the gable, making the fan installation as easy as bolting it in place and sealing the air gaps around the vent, running power and turning it on! They aren’t always the preferred choice however due to the safety and electric needs.

To get an idea of how big of an attic fan you may need, get the footprint of the attic (length x width) and multiply it by .70. This will give you an approximate cubic feet of air volume your attic contains. Ex: 20×60 attic footprint, equals 1200 sf. 1200 x .70 = 840. This means you would need an attic vent that moved a minimum of 840 cfm.

Once you know how big of a fan you need, mounting the fan can be left to a professional or done yourself. Most Atlanta HVAC contractors can and do install attic vent fans, and the three companies we spoke to had a price range of $450-$600 for the basic installation, plus any additional electrical work that may be needed if no electrical source was in the attic space.

Conclusion, and Your Feedback

Installing an attic vent fan can drop the temps by as much as 20-30 degrees on a hot summer day! Eliminating that blanket of hot air in your attic and above your ceiling will effectively allow your home air conditioning system to work much more effectively, since it wont have to compensate for the extra heat.

Did you install an attic fan to your Atlanta home recently? If so, share your cost you paid, and the difference it made to the comfort and utility bills to maintain your home!

I Tried it Thursday: Zumba (And a Really Great Deodorant)

Have you ever tried Zumba? What’s your favorite kind of workout?

Tonight will be my 4th zumba session (twice a week session). I am 68 years old, over-weight, and rhythmically challenged, but I love my zumba class. I keep in constant motion even though I am usually way behind the beat. I don’t worry about hitting the mark, I may never be on the beat, but I do wonder how many months it is going to take me to learn the routines.

I am truly a Zumbaholic. I have lost 40+ lbs and shake my booty six times a week. No other type of

Exercise keeps me going like Zumba. It’s fun and there’s never two days where the routine is the same. Oh and it helps when you have an awesome instructor! Zumba with Bebe in Cypress, TX!! If you are in Houston, TX come on, you will not regret it!

I LOVE Zumba!! I barely use the machines at the gym anymore because I go to Zumba now and enjoy that immensly. Such a good way to keep moving and have fun sweating. I’m really hoping they do classes at my school when I go back in the fall!! Either that or I’ll buy a DVD and do them in my room alone! LOL!! I try to take the classes 1-2 times a week and sometimes the ones on Sunday, which just started.

I go to Zumba 4 days a week! I am addicted! It is a workout I look forward to and if I for some reason can’t go to class I get disappointed! I’m with K8blujay though… I love most dance-style workouts. If I have fun while wroking out then I am more apt to continue working out. :)

Is weight loss all about self-control?

Very little has to do with self control. It’s about people not having enough time and money to exercise and eat right. The worst foods for you are the easiest, cheapest and fastest to make.

Maintaining your weight isn’t hard if you have enough money and time to buy healthy foods and prepare them. Most people don’t. Sure you can cut out calories, but then you’re also cutting out nutrition. I could get my daily amount of calories from two cinnabons or something, but then I’d die.

I have two hours in the day to exercise, I have a boyfriend who cooks me healthy meals. This is why I’m thin. I have little self control. I really try and only eat one serving of cookies or ice cream a day, but it’s hard. Actually, I try to eat none, but that’s not gonna happen.

In many cases being overweight is an issue of time, money, and perhaps under-education. I currently live in a very working-class neighborhood and it’s hard not to notice that A)generally speaking, crappy food reigns supreme – a million McDonalds and NO farmer’s markets and that B) many people are ill-educated, have a large number of children, and have very little money. They are also generally much more overweight than in the higherclass neighborhoods in the area. Of course, when one can’t afford to buy much food, the cheaper, quicker option will always be taken. So where it costs $3.99 a lb for asparagus, 4 bucks will provide and entire meal at McDonalds and there’s no cooking involved. In these respects, certain people are much more disadvantaged when it comes to weightloss and healthy eating.

That being said however, I think self control and discipline do play a big part. It’s a matter of priorities. Albeit there are certainly cases such as those mentioned above where people really just can’t afford to eat well and cases of people with eating disorders (binge eaters) or illnesses like hypothyroidism and etc. but that isn’t the norm. Generally I think most people just expend their self discipline in other areas of their lives and healthy eating and exercise fall by the wayside. For example, consider thought processes like the following: “I’m going to stay late at work and kick my butt to get this project finished”… then later, at home… “I deserve to eat a bunch of ice cream because I was so dedicated at work today.” That’s an issue of discipline certainly. People tend to see food as a reward in and of itself. It takes self control to change these sorts of associations. In my case, I work very hard and still make sure to go to the gym and prepare healthy meals. After all of it, when all is said and done, I have about an hour to read at night before I go to bed. In fact, where one person might see ordering food in and watching a movie as a good way to unwind from the day, hopping on the treadmill and running is one of the only ways I can really get my mind off work and switch into relaxation mode.

Now I suspect most people will see this and think… OK, she’s just crazy, most people don’t like exercise or find it relaxing at all. A while back I would’ve agreed. I’ve only really become this way in the last year or two because for a few months I wanted to lose a couple pounds and forced myself to go to the gym after work etc. It was a total chore in the beginning but now it has become my reward for a day of hard work. This is where self discipline comes into play, I think. It takes self discipline to make new habits and to change one’s attitude towards health, food, exercise etc. People just tend to put other concerns first. So while it’s true that maybe self control isn’t the end-all-be-all answer to why people become overweight, it certainly plays a big part in reversing the situation.

Is this the end of bathrooms on airplanes?

Would you protest an airline that took away toilets from airplanes to make room for more seats? Or do you think air travelers should just suck it up and fly on their planes anyway?

I fly for both my job and for personal reasons, and this is the most horrible idea I’ve ever heard. I would agree that for most short hops throughout Europe the restrooms are rarely used, but seriously-what if you finished your coffee and went to the bathroom before you board, but that horrible “I gotta go NOW” hits you in midair?

I already stay away from Ryanair when I’m back home in Europe-they are cheap, but super no-frills (to the point of being dangerous, IMO). This is just another reason.

Thank God! IT absolutely baffles me why people wait to get on the plane to do their business. Spending so much time at the gate waiting to board, there is plenty of time to use the bathroom. It’ disgusting when someone drops a deuce on an hour and a half flight! I think this is ok for short flights but definately not for anything past 2-3 hours.

Ryanair is the WORST airline I have ever dealt with, so I’m not surprised that they are taking away their bathrooms. They probably justify that their flights are generally short, so someone shouldn’t have to use the restroom while on board, but still that’s crazy. They caused my boyfriend and I to miss our flight with them once, because we didn’t have our boarding passes stamped prior to going through security. No one had told us we needed to do this, and when we asked if we were alright at security they said yes that we were. Ryanair claimed it was our fault and so we had to sleep in the airport overnight and purchase the next flight out while we were there. No reimbursement and no shame ever came from Ryanair’s side.

Ryanair is by far the worst airline, however I can’t say that I’m pleased with any airline these days either.