PMS Relief straight from the Kitchen

For many women, prior to experiencing their monthly menstrual cycle, is not only uncomfortable, but painful too.  PMS can cause a list of symptoms ranging from headaches, dizziness and cramps to irritability, bloating, and breast tenderness.  Fortunately, there are many age-old natural remedies to help alleviate the symptoms of Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS).

Here are soPMS_147487465me home remedies found right in your kitchen to help keep you balanced:

  • From the cupboard- Try oatmeal, pasta, rye bread or basmati rice. They are enriched with magnesium, which is important for normal hormonal function. They also break down slowly and gradually release sugar into the bloodstream. The slow, steady release combats the sugar craving that comes with PMS.
  • Fruits & Produce- Avocados, dates, plums, eggplants, papayas, plantains, cherries and pineapple all contain serotonin which can supplement the mood-lifting brain chemical naturally produced by the body. Bananas are rich in potassium and can relieve bloating and swelling.
  • Seeds- Sunflower, pumpkin and sesame seeds are rich in omega-6 fatty acid, which may be missing in women who suffer from PMS.
  • Poultry- Chicken and turkey are rich in B6 and can help relieve depression. Vegetarian? Try other foods rich in B6 such as milk, brown rice, whole grains, soybeans, beans, walnuts, and green leafy vegetables.
  • Spice- Add a pinch of black pepper to 1 tablespoon aloe vera gel, and take three times a day with meals to relieve symptoms such as backache and abdominal pain. Aloe vera gel taken with a pinch of cumin may work well, too.

Along with a good night’s rest, trying some of these tips can make a big difference in finding comfort from an uncomfortable time many of us women may experience monthly.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Why Do We Yawn?

200350312-001The next time you are with a group of friends, try this little experiment: Take a big yawn and watch and see how many people follow suit. There’s a good chance you’ll set off a chain reaction of deep breaths and wide-open mouths.

Yawning is an involuntary action that causes us to open our mouths wide and breathe in deeply. We know it’s involuntary because we do it even before we’re born. Yawns typically last about six seconds and often occur in clusters. Researchers are starting to unravel the mystery surrounding the yawn. Yawning, they have discovered, is much more complicated than previously thought and although all yawns look the same, they appear to have many different causes and serve a variety of functions.

There are several theories about why we yawn. Here are the four most common:
The physiological theory: Our bodies induce yawning to draw in more oxygen or remove a buildup of carbon dioxide. This theory helps explain why we yawn in groups
The evolution theory: Some think that yawning began with our ancestors, who used yawning to show their teeth and intimidate others.

The boredom theory: Although we do tend to yawn when bored or tired, this theory doesn’t explain why Olympic athletes yawn right before they compete in their event or why dogs tend to yawn just before they attack.

The brain-cooling theory: A more recent theory proposed by researchers is that people yawn more in situations where their brains are likely to be warmer. Cool brains can think more clearly; hence, yawning might have developed to keep us alert.

But why does seeing someone else yawn might make us yawn too?
Interestingly, while all vertebrates (including fish) yawn – only humans, chimps and possibly dogs find yawns contagious. Recent studies show contagious yawning may be linked to one’s capacity for empathy. That is why humans don’t find them contagious until they’re about 4 years old; about the age when we develop a sense of empathy.

What we do know for sure is if you yawn at work or at a gathering, you’ll probably notice a few other people will start yawning, too. Even thinking about yawning can get you yawning. How many times have you yawned while reading this article? We hope not many.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Healthy Food for Healthy Skin

Healthy Food for Healthy Skin

Foods that have antioxidant properties are important because they help repair damage caused by the sun’s UV rays.  Foods and their antioxidant chemicals that will help keep the skin looking good include :

Olive oil – (monounsaturated fatty acids)

Tomatoes – (lycopene)

Dark chocolate – (cocoa flavanoids)

Kelp – (lutein and zeaxanthin)

Orange peels – (limonene)

Red wine – (reservatol)

Cold water fish such as tuna, swordfish sardines and salmon (omega 3 – fatty acids)

Sunflower seeds – (vitamin E)

Other types of foods help the skin maintain its elasticity by promoting production of collagen. These include: soy (isoflavanoids), pumpkin and yogurt (vitamin A), oysters (zinc), and lean meats for their protein content. Water is always very important because it keeps the body hydrated.

It is important to avoid foods that are made from refined carbohydrates and also those containing unhealthy fats. Besides being unhealthy for the entire body, these can lead to premature aging of the skin. .Fried foods or foods that contain a large amount .of sugar can cause acne to develop in adolescents.

While a healthy diet is important for the whole body but there are some foods that can really help you to have nice looking skin. If you would like to schedule an appointment with a dermatologist, please call 718-206-7001.healthy skin

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Can You Overdose on Vitamins?

Vitamins155169367Surely you have heard the saying, “too much of a good thing can become a bad thing.” The same applies to vitamin supplements, as taking an excess of vitamins can be harmful to your health. This may seem contradictory because vitamins are often encouraged to supplement nutrients that may be lacking in our diets. Physicians or nutritionists may suggest vitamins once it is confirmed that you have a nutrient deficiency and highly advise that the daily recommended doses are followed.

The Institute of Medicine has established guidelines such as the RDA (Recommended Dietary Allowance) and DV (Daily Value) to help people understand the daily suggested dose of vitamins.

Vitamin overdose occurs when a person ingests far more than the daily recommendation, for an extended period of time. Although the body can excrete excessive amounts of water-soluble vitamins such as vitamin C, it can retain fat-soluble vitamins such as vitamin A, which can be toxic.

Here are a few vitamins that are proven to be toxic if taken in excess, as well as their symptoms of overdose:

  • Iron- Nausea, bloody stools, diarrhea, dizziness, headache, fluid build-up in the lungs and fever.
  • Vitamin A-Hair loss, liver damage, severe headaches, bone pain, blurred vision, dry skin and vomiting
  • Vitamin D- Abnormal heart rhythm, constipation, frequent urination, muscle weakness and confusion.
  • Vitamin E- Interferes with the body’s ability to clot blood, which can be harmful for those on blood thinning medication
  • B Vitamins-B6 in excess can cause nerve damage; while B3 can cause jaundice, elevated liver enzyme levels and nausea.

If you have decided to purchase vitamins, always follow the daily recommended dose to avoid excessive intake. Before purchasing it is recommended that you consult a physician or nutritionist to receive an assessment.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Asthma in the Winter: Bundle up and Prevent your Symptoms

The cold weather has arrived and aside from worrying about the flu and other upper respiratory infections, people who have asthma should also worry about an increased risk of experiencing an asthma attack. Are you one of the 25.5 million people who have asthma? If so, follow these helpful tips to prevent triggering asthma symptoms or attacks in the cold weather.

 

  • Half hour prior to going out in the cold, take one or two puffs of your inhaler
  • Wrap up well and wear a scarf over your nose and mouth – this will help to warm up the air before you breathe it in.
  • Take extra care when exercising in cold weather. Warm up for 10-15 minutes and take one or two puffs of your inhaler before you start.
  • If possible, avoid fireplaces. As cozy as the thought of a warm fireplace may sound, the burning wood smoke from the fireplace can trigger asthma symptoms or an asthma attack.

Often times, pAsthma_176896123eople stop taking medications because they do not feel any symptoms. If you are on medicines for asthma, consult with your doctor to see if you should continue taking them even when you are asymptomatic.

Create your asthma action plan and share it with your close friends and family. It may be a good idea to make sure your friends and family know what to do if you have an asthma attack and what symptoms to look for such as: coughing more than usual, getting short of breath, wheezing or having difficulty speaking in full sentences.

 

Remember, prevention is key and you can breathe easy knowing your are taking a proactive approach to your asthma condition. By keeping these tips in mind, being consistent with treatments and bundling up in the cold weather, you can still enjoy the winter months.  If you need to speak to a physician about your asthma and plan of action, contact Jamaica Hospital’s Ambulatory Care Center to set an appointment at 718-206-7001.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Why Is Glaucoma Called The “Silent Thief of Sight?”

EyeExam93589973Glaucoma is a condition which increases pressure within the eyeball and causes damage to the optic nerve. Currently almost 3 million people in the United States over the age of 40 have Glaucoma.

Glaucoma is often referred to as the “silent thief of sight,” because there are usually no symptoms until the disease has progressed and there is some form of vision loss. Warning signs to look for are blurred vision, gradual loss of peripheral vision, tunnel vision and halos around lights.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

The NERVE of Diabetes

diabetic neuropathy -177330746According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 25.8 million people in the United States have diabetes. Typically, 60 to 70 percent of people with diabetes have some sort of nerve problems, know as neuropathy.

Neuropathy is a shorter term for peripheral neuropathy, meaning nerve damage in the peripheral nervous system. Neuropathy from diabetes can damage the nerves in your hands, arms, feet and legs. This condition can cause pain, numbness and weakness. Depending on the degree of neuropathy, and how long you have been a diabetic, nerve problems can occur in every organ system, including the digestive tract, heart and reproductive organs.

The highest rates of neuropathy are among people who have had diabetes for at least 25 years. Diabetic neuropathy also appears to be more common in people who have issues with controlling their blood glucose, have high blood pressure and are overweight.

Symptoms of diabetic neuropathy vary depending on the nerves affected and develop gradually over the years. Symptoms may include:

  • Trouble with balance
  • Numbness and tingling of extremities
  • Abnormal sensation to a body part (Dysesthesia)
  • Diarrhea
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Urinary incontinence
  • Vision changes
  • Burning or electric pain in extremities

When treating diabetic neuropathy, a nutritionist may recommend healthier food choices and exercise to help lower your glucose and glycohemoglobin levels. Additionally, analgesics and low doses of antidepressants can be prescribed for pain relief, burning and tingling.

If you are a diabetic and have been experiencing symptoms of neuropathy, Jamaica Hospital Medical Center’s Ambulatory Care Center and Department of Nutrition can help. Call 718-206-7001 to get the process started.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

What is Binge Eating?

BingeEat2.516509191Most of us have overeaten at some point in our lives and felt guilty immediately afterward. It usually happens at a holiday gathering or at one of your favorite restaurants, but what if it happens regularly? Consistently eating large amounts of food at once, and feeling upset after doing so can be considered a binge eating disorder (BED).

A binge is when you consume a large portion of food in a short amount of time – as much as 20,000 calories at once. BED is not the same as bulimia, another eating disorder that involves eating a great deal of food in a short period of time. People with bulimia are very concerned with their body image and attempt various methods to avoid gaining weight, including vomiting, taking diet pills or laxatives, or exercising too much. Those with BED, however, are not concerned with excess weight and therefore do not participate in these compensatory behaviors. For this reason, people with BED are often overweight or obese.

Characteristics of BED include: eating until uncomfortably full, eating when not physically hungry, eating alone, or waking up at night to eat. Binge eaters are usually excited while planning a binge and are frightened of being caught. After a binge, they feel a range of emotions including guilt, shame, disgust, self-loathing, or general numbness.

Binge eating may arise out of stress and an inability to deal with emotions, boredom, depression, or outbursts of hostility. It is very important to recognize binge eating disorder in its early stages and seek treatment before it leads to other health problems, such as hypertension, high cholesterol, diabetes, or heart disease. Therapy sessions can help the individual deal with these psychological aspects of binge eating disorder.

If you exhibit binge eating behavior, it’s important that you seek professional help. This kind of eating will lead to increased weight gain, low self-image and other related health issues. To make an appointment at Jamaica Hospital’s Mental Health Clinic, please call 718-206-5575.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

This Year’s Flu Season May Be Deadly For Children- Learn ways to protect your little ones

sickchild86533581It is being reported in the media  that this year’s strain of the flu virus can potentially be life threatening for children.  Since the beginning of the flu season 21 children have died. This strain of the virus can create severe respiratory problems, bacterial infections and very high fevers.

About 90% of flu cases so far have been caused by the H3N2 sub-type. H3 sub-types tend to cause the largest numbers of hospitalizations and deaths in young children-because their immune systems are still developing. The elderly and those with weakened immune systems are also at risk.

What can you do to protect your children?

  • Watch out for symptoms which include: high fevers, chills and shakes, headaches and body aches, fatigue, sore throat, dry cough, vomiting and stomach aches.
  • Keep children away from people who have flu symptoms.
  • Teach them to cover their noses or mouths, when they cough or sneeze.
  • Wash hands frequently with soap and water.
  • Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth, these are prime areas for germs to spread.
  • Speak with your physician about antiviral drugs.

The CDC recommends that children ages six months and older  should receive flu vaccinations. Although this year’s vaccine is not a match for the H3N2 virus, it will lessen the severity of the symptoms and reduce the chances of hospitalization.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.

Asthma and Alcoholic Drinks

alcoholic drinks

For most people, a glass of wine, beer or distilled liquor is a nice way to relax, but did you know that for a person with asthma it can cause an attack?  Many people end up in hospital  emergency departments with alcohol related asthma attacks.

Alcohol contains varying amounts of chemicals, such as histamines and sulfites, that can cause people with asthma to have an attack. They trigger a tightening of the airway which makes it hard to take full breaths. Alcoholic may also cause acid reflux which occurs when liquid in the stomach goes back up in to the esophagus. This reaction can lead to irritation of the airways causing them to swell..

Anyone who knows that they have asthma should be aware of these reactions and should use extra caution when drinking alcohol. Speak to your physician about what to do in case you have this type of reaction and they may be able to recommend a medication that will help to alleviate the symptoms.

If you have asthma and would like to speak with a pulmonologist at Jamaica Hospital, please call 718-206-6742.

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All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.