Posted in Medical News Today

Can people with type 2 diabetes eat honey?

People with diabetes are often told they should not eat sweets and other foods that contain sugar because they may cause a spike in blood sugar levels. So, could honey be a healthful alternative to sugar-filled sweets and snacks?

Blood sugar (glucose) levels are the amounts of sugar found in the blood. Sugar is the body’s primary source of energy.

Sugar is broken down by insulin, a hormone produced in the pancreas. The bodies of people with diabetes do not produce enough insulin or use it correctly.

What are carbohydrates?

Carbohydrates, which are broken down into sugar provide the body with most of its needed energy. Carbohydrates make up half of recommended daily caloric intake.

Carbohydrates are present in most foods, including:

[honey in a pot]
Like most foods, honey does contain carbohydrates.
  • fruits
  • vegetables
  • milk
  • grains
  • beans
  • honey
  • white sugar
  • brown sugar
  • candy
  • desserts

The amount and type of carbohydrates consumed affect blood sugar levels. To keep their blood sugar at a safe level, people with diabetes should limit their total carbohydrate intake to between 45 grams (g) and 60 g per meal or less. As such, it is important to choose healthful, non-processed, high-fiber carbohydrates and control portion sizes.

What is honey?

Raw honey starts out as flower nectar. After being collected by bees, nectar naturally breaks down into simple sugars and is stored in honeycombs. The honeycombs trigger the nectar to evaporate, which creates a thick, sweet liquid known as honey.

Honey, like other sugars, is a condensed source of carbohydrates. One tablespoon of honey contains at least 17 g of carbohydrates.

While this amount may seem small, it adds up pretty quickly depending on how many carbohydrates a person consumes at a meal sitting. While honey is made up of sugar, it also contains vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

Read the rest at Medical News Today.

Posted in Mango Health

Is It Time to Find a New Doctor? 5 Red Flags to Watch For

Deciding if it’s time to find a new doctor can be difficult decision. After all, relationships take time, and this one happens to have a large impact on your health. Rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia writer Lana Barhum shares five red flags to watch for, as you decide whether or not it’s time to find a new doctor.

HAVING AVOIDED PREVIOUS HEALTH ISSUES, I DIDN’T KNOW WHAT A “GOOD” RELATIONSHIP WITH MY DOCTOR WAS SUPPOSED TO LOOK LIKE.

In late 2009, I sat in the waiting room of Dr. A., my rheumatologist at the time, dreading yet another visit. It was over a year earlier that she had diagnosed me with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and fibromyalgia.

RA is an autoimmune disease that causes inflammation throughout the body, including to the joints and organs. It can be life threatening if not properly managed. Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition that causes widespread muscle and tissue pain, tenderness, fatigue, along with other, often debilitating symptoms.

Prior to these health issues, my medical visits had been sporadic. So I didn’t know what a “good” relationship with my doctor was supposed to look like, at that time. But if you find yourself dreading every visit – like I did – it may be time to find a new doctor. Here are five red flags to watch for:

1. Your doctor doesn’t listen to you
Does your doctor interrupt you or appear to be distracted? Chances are, they may not listening to you. It takes two to communicate: if you often feel like your concerns aren’t being heard, you are probably right.

My first rheumatologist never addressed my concerns or answered my questions. When I endured side effects to prescribed medications and found no symptom relief, for instance, she refused to change my medicines. Moreover, at each visit, it seemed she was uninformed about my health history and why I was there.

Read the rest at Mango Health.

Posted in Medical News Today

Coconut palm sugar: Can people with diabetes eat it?

In order to manage their condition, people with diabetes need to monitor their sugar intake. A good way of doing this might be by choosing a natural sweetener option. One of the more popular choices is coconut palm sugar.

In this article, we look at the effect coconut palm sugar has on blood sugar (glucose) levels and whether it may be healthful for people with diabetes.

What is diabetes?

[coconut palm sugar]
Is coconut palm sugar a safer option for people with diabetes, who have to closely monitor their blood sugar levels?

People with diabetes have bodies that do not produce enough insulin or use insulin correctly.

Insulin is the hormone needed to help the body to normalize blood sugar levels. Blood sugar levels are a measurement of the amount of sugar in the bloodstream.

All foods contain sugar. The body stores the sugar and transports it through the bloodstream to the cells, which use it as energy.

When insulin is not working properly, sugar cannot enter cells, and they are unable to produce as much energy. When the cells of the body cannot process sugar, diabetes occurs.

What is coconut palm sugar?

Coconut palm sugar is made from the sap of the coconut palm. The sugar is extracted, from the palm by heating it until the moisture evaporates. After processing, the sugar has a caramel color and tastes like brown sugar, making it an easy substitution in any recipe .

Coconut palm sugar is considered a healthier option for people with diabetes because it contains less pure fructose than other sweeteners.

The digestive tract does not absorb fructose as it does other sugars, which means that the excess fructose finds its way to the liver. Too much fructose in the liver can lead to a host of metabolic problems including type 2 diabetes.

Read the rest at Medical News Today.

Posted in News Medical

Link Between Chronic Illness and Depression

Chronic illness and pain are generally associated with increased risk for depression, and depression is a common complication of being sick and in pain. In fact, the Cleveland Clinic reports that at least one-third of people living with a serious health condition will experience symptoms of depression.

Serious illnesses will bring out incredible challenges and hardships and complicate the ability to take pleasure in and pursue activities once enjoyed. It is no wonder that chronically ill people experience sadness and despondency.  So often, the physical effects of the illness and/or medication side effects may trigger depressed feelings.

Conditions that trigger depression

Many chronic illnesses may trigger depression, including the following:

  • Heart Disease

Up to 15% of people with heart disease experience depression, this according to the Cleveland Clinic. Further, as noted by a study published in the Archives of General Psychiatry, heart disease patients with depression have increased platelet reactivity, decreased heart variability, and increased pro-inflammation markers, which lead to increased risks, including heart attack.

Depression may increase blood pressure, affect heart rhythm, and alter blood clotting – all things that worsen heart disease or may trigger a heart attack.

Read the rest at News Medical.

Posted in NewLife Outlook

Exercises for Relief From Low Back Pain

Stretches for Back Pain Stretches for Back Pain

The American Chiropractic Association reports that 31 million Americans experience low-back pain. One study, reported in the Annals of Rheumatic Disease, finds that 1 in 10 people worldwide are affected by low back pain.

Americans spend at least $50 billion every year to treat back pain. Low back pain is also leading cause of disability in the world.

Back pain one of the most common reasons people miss work and also one of the most common reasons for visiting the doctor.

What Is Back Pain?

Your back is comprised of bones, joints, ligaments, and muscles. If you sprain a ligament, strain a muscle, rupture a disk, or irritate a joint, you may experience back pain.

Injuries and accidents can result in back pain and sometimes, a simple activity such as picking up a small child can cause back pain. Arthritis, repetitive activity, being overweight, poor posture, and stress also cause and worsen back pain.

You can also experience back pain as result of diseases affecting the organs, such as kidney infections or stones or a blood clot.

Treating Back Pain

Back health has a significant effect on quality of life so it is important to seek out appropriate treatment to manage your back pain. And while medication may help, its use has mixed results.

One study conducted for the non-profit public education and advocacy group, Research America, finds 58 percent of people experience relief with prescription drugs and another 41 percent found relief with over-the counter medications. And while some medications do offer pain relief, they can also cause side effects; long-term use is associated with variety of complications, including increased risk for stroke and heart attack, stomach bleeding, hypersensitivity to pain, and addiction.

A natural treatment for managing back pain and supporting your lower spine, without side effects and complications, involves stretching the muscles in your back. Many very simple exercises can be done in about 20 minutes as part of a daily routine.

Getting Ready and Warming Up

Everyone can benefit from stretching the soft tissues, muscles, ligaments, and tendons. It may take you a few weeks of stretching exercises to get relief for your back, spine and soft tissues, but you find many of these exercises to be beneficial for offering sustained back pain relief and increased range of motion.

There are some things to keep in mind as you start an exercise and stretching routine to help you manage back pain:

  • Wear comfortable clothing that allows for easy movement.
  • Make sure your stretching routine is pain free. Don’t force your body to do what it cannot.
  • Move into stretches slowly to avoid muscle tears.
  • Make sure you are stretching on a flat surface where you can move freely.
  • Hold your stretches for at least 25 seconds to allow muscles and joints time to loosen up.
  • Perform each stretch 5 to 10 times.
  • It is also wise to check with your doctor or physical therapist on any additional precautions you should take to avoid injury.

Read the rest at New Life Outlook.

Posted in Medical News Today

Type 2 diabetes: Symptoms, early signs, and complications

Type 2 diabetes is the most common form of diabetes. Type 2 diabetes can develop at any age, although it is more common in middle-aged and older adults. But what are the early signs and symptoms of this condition?

Type 2 diabetes results in high blood sugar levels and is believed to affect 29.1 million Americans. It accounts for up to 95 percent of all diabetes cases, according to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

In this article, we explore the early signs and symptoms of type 2 diabetes. We also look at the associated risk factors and potential complications of the condition.

What is type 2 diabetes?

Some symptoms of type 2 diabetes may include fatigue, increased hunger, and increased thirst.

People with type 2 diabetes do not make or use insulin correctly. Insulin is a hormone that regulates movement of blood glucose (sugar) into cells. Blood glucose is the body’s source of energy and comes from food.

When sugar cannot enter cells, it builds up and the body is unable to rely on it for energy. If the body is unable to get glucose, the result is symptoms of type 2 diabetes.

Read the rest at Medical News Today. 

Posted in NewLife Outlook

Coping With AFib in the Hot Summer Months

Managing Atrial Fibrillation in Summer

Atrial fibrillation (AFib) is a condition that causes a fast, fluttering heart beat called arrhythmia. The American Heart Association reports at least 2.7 million Americans are living with AFib.

Symptoms of AFib include general fatigue, rapid or irregular heartbeat, dizziness, weakness, shortness of breath, faintness or confusion, sweating, or chest pain and pressure. Chest pain or pressure is a medical emergency and you should call 911 immediately.

Summer Months and AFib Symptoms

Hot and humid weather is unpleasant for most people, but it can be very dangerous if you have AFib. Therefore, it is important for you to know the risks of hot weather and take precautions during the during the summer months.

Being outdoors during extremely hot weather takes a toll on your body and increases your chance of an AFib attack. An AFib attack causes symptoms of heart palpitations, rapid heartbeat, chest pain, and extreme anxiety.

One 2013 report out of the University of Parma, Italy, confirms that atmospheric factors, especially temperature and humidity between the end of July and the first two weeks of August, correlate with AFib incidences and attacks.

Of note is that more AFib patients were admitted to emergency rooms for AFib attacks in the middle of the summer than any other time of the year.

Read the rest at New Life Outlook. 

Posted in NewLife Outlook

What to Know About Disability for Rheumatoid Arthritis

Social Security and Rheumatoid Arthritis Disability

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) affects 1.3 million people in the United States, according to the American College of Rheumatology. It is the most common autoimmune form of inflammatory arthritis.

RA is caused when your immune system (your body’s defense system) stops working and attacks healthy cells because it believes they are unhealthy. It often causes pain and swelling in the small joints of the hands and feet, but can affect any joint or organ of the body.

RA can affect anyone of any age and there is no cure for it. Treatments include aggressive medications, lifestyle changes, complementary therapies, and in some cases, surgery.

If you have a severe form of RA, it is possible you may qualify for social security disability benefits. Social security disability payments help when you are no longer able to work due to a serious illness or disability.

To qualify for disability benefits, you will need to show the Social Security Administration (SSA) that you are no longer able to perform a job consistently. And if your joint pain or any deformities make it difficult and impossible for you to do your job, you may qualify for disability benefits.

Read the rest at New Life Outlook.

Posted in NewLife Outlook

How Common Is Kidney Cancer?

Kidney Cancer’s Prevalence

If you have been diagnosed with kidney cancer, you have many questions, including whether you are the only one living with this type of cancer and what the statistics are for risk factors, treatment success, and survival rates.

Here is some information about kidney cancer and its various statistics.

Prevalence

Last year, there were more than 50,000 diagnosed cases of kidney cancer in the United States, according to the American Cancer Society. This year, it is estimated there will be 64,990 new cases.

Kidney cancer is the 12th most common cancer in the world according to the World Cancer Research Fund International. Renal cell carcinoma is the most common type of kidney cancer with 80 to 90 percent of cases, the remaining 10 to 20 percent are renal pelvic cancer.

Two Types of Kidney Cancer

Renal cell carcinoma (RCC) forms in the lining of the tubules (small tubes) of the kidney. As the most common type of kidney cancer, it affects mostly men between the ages of 50 and 70 according to the National Cancer Institute.

How well your treatments work with RCC depends on how much the cancer has spread. Your survival rate is highest if your tumor is removed in its early stages and hasn’t spread outside the kidney, but if the cancer has spread to the lymph nodes and other organs, your survival rate is much lower.

Renal pelvis cancer (RPC) forms in the kidney’s pelvis in the ureter, the tube that carries urine from the kidney to the bladder. RPC is more common in people older than age 65 and its exact cause is unknown. It affects more men than women.

Chronic irritation of the kidney from harmful substances in the urine, such as from medicines, smoking, and exposures to certain chemicals may play a part. If you have previously had bladder cancer, you are also at risk for developing RPC.

Your quality of life and survival depends on the location of the tumor and how much the cancer has spread. If the cancer is only in the kidney or ureter, you could be cured with surgery but if the cancer has spread to other organs, it is generally not curable.

Read the rest at New Life Outlook.

Posted in NewLife Outlook

Lifestyle Changes for Managing Back Pain

Living With Back Pain

If you have experienced back pain, you are not alone.

According to one report, published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine, the number of people reporting low back in the United States on a yearly basis is 15 to 20 percent with a lifetime occurrence of over 60 percent. It is the fifth most common reason people visit their doctors.

Back pain has any number of causes. It can result from an injury or stem from a chronic condition, such as arthritis or fibromyalgia, or it can be the result of being overweight and having a sedentary lifestyle.

Most back pain gets better on its own, with or without treatment. Surgery is rarely a necessary done to treat back pain.

There are plenty of lifestyle changes and self-help strategies to help you prevent back pain, manage it, and keep it from coming back.

Keep Moving

If your back is hurting, regular activity can help to relieve inflammation and ease muscle tension.

Exercises for low back pain can you help to strength your back muscles. They also help you to support your spine.

Research finds that most exercise is safe for people with back pain.

You should, however, ask your doctor before starting any exercises for your back, especially if you are in pain. He or she can offer recommendations for effective and safe exercises.

Watch Your Weight

Extra weight, especially in your midsection, makes back pain worse because it shifts your body forward and puts strain on your back.

Maintaining a healthy weight or losing a few pounds can ease your back issues and reduce stress on other joints.

Don’t Smoke

If you smoke, reducing your risk for back pain is a reason to quit.

According to researchers out of Northwestern University (NWU), smokers are more likely to develop chronic pain. The NWU researchers theorize that smoking interferes with brain functions associated with pain.

Another study, published in the American Journal of Medicine, finds that even former smokers are at a higher risk for developing back pain compared to those who have never smoked.

Read the rest at New Life Outlook.