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Archive for January 2009

Stem Cell Transplants Help MS Victims

Title: Stem Cell Transplants Help MS Victims
Category: Health News
Created: 1/30/2009 2:00:00 AM
Last Editorial Review: 1/30/2009

Source:Stem Cell Transplants Help MS Victims

Blood Test for 'Mad Cow' Disease May Be Near

Title: Blood Test for ‘Mad Cow’ Disease May Be Near
Category: Health News
Created: 1/30/2009 2:00:00 AM
Last Editorial Review: 1/30/2009

Source:Blood Test for 'Mad Cow' Disease May Be Near

Zoloft, Lexapro the Best of Newer Antidepressants

Title: Zoloft, Lexapro the Best of Newer Antidepressants
Category: Health News
Created: 1/30/2009 2:00:00 AM
Last Editorial Review: 1/30/2009

Source:Zoloft, Lexapro the Best of Newer Antidepressants

Immune System Boosters

Many believe that there are foods that can act as immune system boosters, while others believe that the simple act of getting sick and fighting it off is the best way to have a healthier system. There are a lot of conflicting reports, and a person never knows what to do next. I know that I don?t get sick very often, and I can?t say it is anything that I eat or that I do. That is just the way my body works. I guess I have been blessed with a strong immune system, and it would seem that my daughter has as well.

I have seen shows on television that claim certain food are immune system boosters. Many of these foods were simple and natural, yet they are not things that most people eat on a daily basis. You could eat them all the time, but the amounts you would need are overwhelming. Perhaps they are immune system boosters, but they aren?t going to work if you can?t stomach them, or if you can?t eat enough. I know fish is good for you, but how much fish can one person eat?

Lupazol? Immune System Support

There are others who say that many forms of exercise are immune system boosters. It would stand to reason that the better you are about taking care of your body, the better your systems are going to work. Staying active seems to be the key to everything. If you want to stay slender, get slim, live longer, fight of diseases, and feel better all around, you should make exercise a part of your day. I haven?t heard of any specific exercises that are supposed to be immune system boosters, but I think that any type would do.

There are natural pills and such that claim to be immune systems boosters. I couldn?t tell you if they work, but I know a lot of natural things can be dangerous if taken with the wrong prescriptions. If you want to know more about immune system boosters you may want to discuss the topic with your doctor. If you are on medication, you should never take anything, even something labeled as natural, without talking to your doctor anyway. Perhaps taking your vitamins, eating healthy foods, and making time for exercise is the best defense against any sickness that might come your way. You won?t be able to avoid everything, but you may find you are catching less and less of whatever is going around.

Vitamins for Acne Get You on the Road to Clearer Skin

I have battled breakouts for most of my life, at least as far back as I can remember, so I know how embarrassing and painful the condition can be. I tried just about everything to get clearer skin, but to no avail. Then I learned an important fact about our skin. What we put into our bodies will affect every part — including our complexion! It was then that I got turned on to vitamins for acne.

After many years of dealing with this condition, I came to the conclusion that there was no effective way to treat this condition topically. I mean, you can wash your face over and over, but you’ll most likely just end up with dry skin, and the breakouts will keep on happening. You can put over-the-counter creams on your face every night, but those products will never address the root cause of breakouts.

That’s why I began considering natural treatments for this condition, and researched the idea of vitamins for acne. It wasn’t difficult to do, since there is plenty of good information on the Internet explaining how supplements can work on this condition, and identifying which ones were the best. For example, there are a number of nutrients that you should look for in vitamins for acne, such as antioxidants and B5. If a product doesn’t contain those, it probably won’t help much.

Antioxidants are found in foods like fruits and vegetables, and fight the effects of free radicals that increase your risk for a variety of conditions (like skin conditions!) and cause premature aging. Since most of us don’t eat the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables daily, a supplement is a good way to get these much-needed nutrients. Once you start taking vitamins for acne, your skin will thank you with a healthier glow and a clearer complexion.

Another breakthrough in vitamins for acne has to do with B5, or pantothenic acid. This nutrient has been shown to be nearly as effective in achieving clearer skin as Accutane, but it is much cheaper and doesn’t come with a long list of side effects. There are a number of companies on the Internet that offer their own variety of this particular vitamin for acne, along with additional information about why it is so effective.

Dealing with this painful and embarrassing skin condition is no fun, but the good news is that there is help available. By finding vitamins for acne, you can give your body the nutrients it needs to stay at optimum health, which will allow you to look and feel better. Give one of these products a shot, and say hello to clearer skin!

How to Mentally Prepare Yourself to Quit Smoking

Do you want to quit smoking? Most people fail the first time, or even the 2nd or 3rd time, they try to quit smoking. How about you? Have you tried to stop smoking before and failed? Do you know why you failed to quit smoking? Chances are you didn’t mentally prepare yourself first. Read on to learn some tips to help you mentally prepare yourself first to quit smoking and increase your chances of success.

Do you really want to quit smoking?
The first question to ask yourself is what are the reasons why you want to quit smoking? If your answer is because someone told you it would be better for your health, it costs too much money, someone else wants you to quit or some other reason along those lines; chances are you probably won’t succeed. You have to really want it for you! Make a list of the reasons why YOU want to quit smoking for YOU.

Why do you like to smoke?
Now make a list of all of the reasons why you like to smoke. Is it the taste of the cigarette? Alone? With Coffee? After a meal? Or perhaps it’s the way it makes you feel. Happy? Pleasurable? Relaxed? Powerful? Important? Or perhaps smoking helps you not to feel. Does smoking numb your feelings? Reduce your feelings of stress? Or fear? Relieve your feelings of boredom? Or loneliness? Whatever the reasons, write them down.

What will you substitute for smoking?
Next you need to decide what you’ll substitute for smoking. Yes, you can get a nicotine substitute for the physical sensations you’ll feel when you quit. But what are you going to substitute for the emotional sensations you’ll feel when you quit smoking? Next to each reason you listed why you like to smoke, write down something you can do to generate those same or similar sensations or feelings.

Some suggestions are:
– Surround yourself with positive, supportive people who will help you feel good about yourself.
– Take up a new hobby such as knitting, model airplanes, scrapbooking or puzzles; anything that will keep your hands and mind busy, generate feelings of pleasure and give you a sense of accomplishment.
– Incorporate physical activity into your daily routine. Whether it’s a 10 minute walk or a bike ride with your kids, any activity that will support your efforts to quit, reduce your stress level and improve your overall health.

Following the tips covered in this article may increase your chances of successfully becoming a non-smoker. What are the reasons you really, really, want to quit for YOU? Why do you like to smoke? What else can you substitute to generate those sensations or feelings that you get from smoking? Remember, if you want to increase your odds of successfully quitting smoking, become emotionally ready first.

High Cholesterol? But I’m Not Old

Although you will often hear older folks discussing their cholesterol levels and see older persons in cholesterol reducing product ads, having high cholesterol levels is not a disease of the elderly.

Anyone, at any age can be inflicted with high cholesterol levels. The main reason why it appears that this is a disease of the aged is because they are the ones who get their levels checked regularly.

So why do many young people have such high cholesterol levels?

Although there are many factors which come into play such as genetics, and the use of certain prescriptions, most high cholesterol levels are caused by a diet which is too high in fat, too low in fiber and contains many simple sugars from soda and candy.

The average teen eats at fast food restaurants five times a week and even if they don’t go out to a burger joint, many schools now serve fast food right in the cafeteria so they are always getting tempted.

Just think of the amount of fat from all those burgers and fries, and sugar from soda, it’s enough to push anyone?s cholesterol levels upward.

So what can you do about it?

First, you have to realize that high cholesterol levels can be dangerous as they can lead to heart disease and strokes. But you also should know that you could start lowering your levels before any permanent injury to your body occurs, and you can start today.

Since I know that you still want to hit the fast food restaurants with your friends I am not even going to suggest that you stop. What you do you have to do however, it make better food choices when you are there. Do you always have to have a fatty burger and greasy fries? No.

There are better options. Each restaurant has nutrition information booklets that you can pick up at the restaurant, or if you are too shy to check them out in front of your friends you should know that most now have online menus so you can plan ahead. Just type in the name of the restaurant with “nutrition” behind it. This way you can plan before you go.

Notice all the other items on the menu besides burgers and fries? Take a look at the salads. I know that salads may not sounds as good as a burger but you will find that you won’t feel as sluggish after eating a salad. Just make sure that you avoid using all the salad dressing or ask for low fat dressing.
You will also want toss the croutons as they are very high in fat.

Still want a soda? That’s fine, just chose a sugar free one or even better yet a bottled water or glass of Crystal Light.

In addition to salads, you will also find chicken on the menu. Just be sure to remove any batter that is on the chicken. If you don’t want to tell your friends that you are watching your fat intake just tell them that the batter gets stuck in between your teeth and you find it annoying.

When you are eating at home be sure to eat plenty of veggies as they are they are high in fiber and have little or no fat. Even if you are not a veggie fan, look at different types of veggies. There are also some great frozen vegetables with low fat cheese and garlic sauces that will please even the most finicky of eaters.

Do you like Oatmeal? Great! Oatmeal contains soluble fiber that can actually whisk the cholesterol right out of your system. Just opt for the plain variety and add your own fruit.

If cold cereal is more your style look for ones that say “high fiber” or “lowers cholesterol.” You’ll be surprised how many good ones you will find. For example, Cheerios is a great cholesterol lowering cereal.

If you still crave burgers and fries, eat them at home. Use 97% lean ground beef and eat your burger on a 100% whole grain bun. Cook your fries in the oven by spraying them lightly with a non-fat cooking oil spray like Pam, and they will crisp up and taste pretty dang good.

By making simple better food choices you should start to see your cholesterol levels go down by your next blood test and be able to have a long healthier life.

Causes for Hair Loss.

How’s the dew looking these days? Is it just as thick, shiny and vibrant as it was back in high school? Or, are you starting to reflect sunlight off your head? That’s always a major bummer. No one likes to say bye bye to their snazzy dew. For some it’s their best feature in the first place. Regardless, there is not a lot we can do with the old gene pool. After all, this is probably one of the primary causes for hair loss. However, there are several ways to battle this affliction once it rears its ugly head. It’s high time to see a trichologist, ladies and gentlemen. There’s no reason why you have to say goodbye to your hair. Do you have a computer handy?

Do you know the major causes for hair loss? Well, if you don’t already, then let me fill you in on the secrets of the follicle. First of all, most likely one of the greatest causes for hair loss is genetics. So, how can you tell if you will lose your head fuzz? It has a lot to do with your family tree. You’ll want to check out your grandfather. Your mother’s father to be more specific. How was his hair looking the last time you saw him? If he’s 70 years old with a full head of hair, then that’s a pretty good sign. This is basic biology, folks. Now, if your mother’s father passed away at a young age, then there may be nothing to go on. I used to look at my father and wonder if I would lose my dew, but I still haven’t after 30 years. Not to say that it won’t happen, but it’s looking good so far. However, for the longest time, I thought his baldness would have an impact on me, but it shouldn’t according to science. Then there are a few other causes for hair loss. One of the major ones being stress. Yes indeed, stress can often be the culprit of a thinning hair dew. What does this tell you? Well duh! It tells you to take life as it comes and don’t worry about things. Worrying won’t benefit you in any way regardless.

For more information on causes for hair loss, you can get on the World-Wide-Web for a closer look. Sort through a variety of new-age treatments and remedies for thinning hair. Maybe you’re looking to do something about your hair loss. Hey, the sooner the better.

Banish Insomnia — Sleep Safe with Amino Acids

There is something most uncivilized about living in a civilized world. What is it? It?s hard to get good night?s sleep.

Some of this punishing sleep deprivation is voluntary. Too much to do. Too much to see. Too many responsibilities. Not enough sleep.

For many people, sleep is a desperate need. People toss and turn, but sleep does not come. Others get to sleep only to awaken later in the middle of the night. In the morning, thousands (millions?) head off to work bleary-eyed, trying to be productive. It?s a vicious cycle.

Eventually exhaustion can get bad enough that a person seeks help from their doctor, who obligingly writes a prescription for some pills. At first, they work well and the sleepless person gets some much needed relief.

However, the real nightmare is about to begin. After awhile, the sleeping pills stop working. Unfortunately, by then, the person is addicted. The doctor has been told the drugs are not addictive by the drug manufacturer. Anecdotal evidence, however, suggests drug manufacturers aren?t giving doctors the whole story. There?s big money in having a ?non-addictive? sleeping pill. As the saying goes, ?Money Talks.?

It turns out that there is another way, but not one health insurance will pay for. Because there are no large drug companies standing behind this alternative, health insurance companies don?t recognize it as a therapeutic choice.

Contrary to what doctors usually are taught both in medical schools and from drug companies, nutrition plays a large role in getting a good night?s sleep. There are a number of vitamins and minerals that support sleep. An internet search for ?insomnia vitamins? and ?insomnia minerals? provides a wealth of information about these nutritional supports.

Staying away from nicotine, caffeine and alcohol helps in getting a good night?s sleep, as does having a good diet and getting regular exercise

Amino acids are lesser known for their importance in being able to get enough sleep, but they are just as vital. L-Tryptophan, for example, is called ?essential? for a reason. People can?t live without it.

Without enough L-Tryptophan, or its easier-to-get cousin, 5-HTP (5-Hydroxy Tryptophan), human beings are not able to calm down. Sound familiar? Usually, about 100 mg of 5-HTP provides enough relaxation that sleep becomes an option for an average adult. Experimentation to discover an appropriate dosage is safe and easy.

Sleep becomes an option with enough L-Tryptophan in the brain. This is where L-Theanine, another commonly available amino acid, comes in. It?s a sleep time amplifier, providing more rest in less time. A dose of 100 mg at bed time is a good starting place.

Finally, GABA (yet another amino acid) works for some people. Most sleeping pills work on the same part of the brain that uses GABA. Unfortunately, for technical reasons, just taking GABA does not always work that well. Trying 200 mg at bed time is a good starting place. It may or may not work.

Anyone having trouble getting a good night?s sleep can leave the sleeping pills in the cabinet. Instead, trying some 5-HTP, L-Theanine and GABA is an inexpensive option. These supplements are a safe and non-addictive alternative.

Are You Suffering From Panic Attacks?

Standing in line at the grocery store you start to feel your heart race. Within moments your hands are sweating, your breathing becomes short and rapid, you feel hot, dizzy and overwhelmed with a sense of fear.

What is this sensation? Where is it coming form? If you have experienced similar sensations in the past and especially if you have begun changing your life and routine in the fear of experiencing it again, you may be suffering from Panic Attacks.


Panic is a physical reaction that is a response to stress. Often called the ‘fight or flight’ response, panic is a normal response to danger and is actually your body’s cue to get out of harm’s way. However, when panic sets in when there is no source of danger it can be linked to two causes – stress or possibly, a panic disorder.

The following symptoms are common during a panic attack:

– rapid heartbeat

– shortness of breath or inability to breath

– dizziness or nausea

– sweating, shaking or trembling

– a sense of fear or dread

– tingling sensation in the fingers or toes

– chest pain

– hot flashes or chills

– thinking you are going to die or go craz


Stress in our lives is not usually caused by a physical danger; in fact most stress is caused by completely normal daily activities and is not harmful to us. Too much stress, however, is dangerous to our body and in some cases it can cause panic attacks, particularly if we have experienced an additional trauma or burden such as the loss of a loved one or big change such as a new job or move. While normal stress can cause anxiety, when panic attacks become regular a panic disorder may be the cause.

Panic disorder may or may not be directly related to over stress. Some researchers are linking the panic attacks caused by panic disorder to a physical cause. If this is the case you need to seek professional help in dealing with the symptoms.

Sadly most individuals suffering from panic disorder do not get properly diagnosed. Many begin to suffer the physical and psychological effects of changing their lives, their jobs and their recreational activities to accommodate their panic attacks before finding a physician that can properly diagnose their condition. The symptoms of panic attacks may also lead a person to believe they have a dangerous physical condition and seek treatment for various unrelated diseases and conditions.


If you think you have been experiencing panic attacks you will need to be diagnosed by your physician or referred to a psychiatrist. While the physical symptoms may not be connected to a mental condition, often the fear of having panic attacks in public leads to phobias that may need to be treated as well.

A combination of medication and therapy may be used to combat the panic attacks and help a person to overcome related phobias.

The good news is that panic disorder responds very well to treatment and those who receive treatment can lead healthy, normal lives.

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