Tag Archives: Blood pressure

Straight, No Chaser: Quick Tips to Detoxify Yourself Naturally

Natural-Detox1

Here are 3-4 Quick Tips for each of the organs involved in naturally detoxifying you; I’ve limited what I’m giving you to do in the effort to make this manageable for you. I don’t think you’ll find anything here beyond your ability to implement into your routine. If you incorporate the items listed below, you’ll be well on your way to a healthier life.
Quick tips to naturally detox your skin: 

  1. Diet: think fruits and vegetables, and cut back on refined sugar.
  2. Sweat: You know I prefer you exercise, but if you’re healthy enough, the sauna works too. Or you can just move to Texas in the summer.
  3. Exfoliation is a beautiful thing. There are dozens of ways to do it. Find one that works for you.
  4. Hydrate and moisturize. You spend too much time in the sun and lose too much water from your skin not to replenish (You get a bonus tip because your skin is such an important detox organ.).

Quick tips to naturally detox your lungs:

  1. Avoid inhaling cigarette and cigar smoke. Duh.
  2. Exercise makes your respiratory machinery more effective and efficient. Go for it.
  3. Learn to deep breathe. Take it in from your belly. Learn to breathe slowly and deeply. Yoga is a great complement to this.

Quick tips to naturally detox your kidneys:

  1. It’s all about fluids. Remember that your body is over 60% water, and you have to stay hydrated and keep flushing. I’ve discussed this previously but remember to get in at least 64 ounces of fluids a day.
  2. Learn about cranberries. Many of those urinary tract infections are successfully addressed by drinking cranberry juice.
  3. Remember that diabetes and high blood pressure are the most common causes of kidney disease. You want to detox your kidneys? Control your blood pressure and avoid/control diabetes.

Quick Tips to naturally detox your liver and intestines:

  1. Increase your water intake. Water makes your entire body function better but also softens your stools, facilitating transport.
  2. Increase your fiber intake. Fiber bulks your stools and makes it easier to expel.
  3. Decrease your alcohol intake. As everyone knows, alcohol will sufficiently damage your kidneys to the point where your body will be unable to eliminate many toxins. Liver disease is a very unpleasant experience and way to die.

It bears repeating: if all of this sound fundamental, it’s because it is. You have the ability to help yourself if you consistently apply basic health and wellness principles. You can do this.
Feel free to ask your SMA expert consultant any questions you may have on this topic.
Take the #72HoursChallenge, and join the community. As a thank you for being a valued subscriber to Straight, No Chaser, we’d like to offer you a complimentary 30-day membership at www.72hourslife.com. Just use the code #NoChaser, and yes, it’s ok if you share!
Order your copy of Dr. Sterling’s new books There are 72 Hours in a Day: Using Efficiency to Better Enjoy Every Part of Your Life and The 72 Hours in a Day Workbook: The Journey to The 72 Hours Life in 72 Days at Amazon or at www.72hourslife.com. Receive introductory pricing with orders!
Thanks for liking and following Straight, No Chaser! This public service provides a sample of what http://www.SterlingMedicalAdvice.com (SMA) and 844-SMA-TALK offers. Please share our page with your friends on WordPress, like us on Facebook SterlingMedicalAdvice.com and follow us on Twitter at @asksterlingmd.
Copyright © 2018 · Sterling Initiatives, LLC · Powered by WordPres

Straight, No Chaser: High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)

hypertension-34

High blood pressure is called the silent killer. It’s common for me to see someone who thought they were ‘fine’ drop dead from its effects, never knowing it was about to happen and not having been aware of the warning signs and risk factors.
In lay terms, your heart is just a muscular pump pushing blood (containing oxygen and nutrients) around the body keeping stuff alive. The more you poison that pump (by ingesting unhealthy foods and inhaling other toxins) and strain the muscle by adding weight and clogging its vessels so it has to pump against more force (by being obese, not exercising and engaging in other unhealthy behaviors), the more likely that muscle is to strain until it gives out. Once it does, blood isn’t delivering what’s needed to your vital organs, and that’s when bad stuff happens.
bloodpressureThe vital organs in question and those bad effects include the following:
• The heart itself (no blood flow and no oxygen = heart attack; when the heart’s not strong enough to pump blood around the body = congestive heart failure)
• The blood vessels, especially the heart’s main offshoot, the aorta (too much strain = aneurysm, an outpouching from the main tubular system, stealing valuable blood from the rest of the body)
• The brain (no blood flow and no oxygen = stroke; aneursyms also occur in the brain)
• The kidneys (not enough blood flow or adequate enough function to clear the toxins from the kidney = renal failure)
• The eyes (poor blood flow and/or diseased eye blood vessels leads to vision loss)

blood_pressure_5_treat-img_1280x720-jpg

Bottom line: The heart is a muscle best thought of as a machine. Here’s three easy things you can do to reduce your risks.
• Get off your butt. Any exercise helps to get your heart pumping and blood flowing; strive for 20” three times a week at the very least.
• Close your mouth. Everything in moderation is cool, but introduce some fruits and vegetables into your life.
• Lose the salt shaker. At least taste your food first. It’s likely the food was already prepared with salt.
Did I mention stop smoking? Any questions?
Feel free to ask your SMA expert consultant any questions you may have on this topic.
Take the #72HoursChallenge, and join the community. As a thank you for being a valued subscriber to Straight, No Chaser, we’d like to offer you a complimentary 30-day membership at www.72hourslife.com. Just use the code #NoChaser, and yes, it’s ok if you share!
Order your copy of Dr. Sterling’s new books There are 72 Hours in a Day: Using Efficiency to Better Enjoy Every Part of Your Life and The 72 Hours in a Day Workbook: The Journey to The 72 Hours Life in 72 Days at Amazon or at www.72hourslife.com. Receive introductory pricing with orders!
Thanks for liking and following Straight, No Chaser! This public service provides a sample of what http://www.SterlingMedicalAdvice.com (SMA) and 844-SMA-TALK offers. Please share our page with your friends on WordPress, like us on Facebook SterlingMedicalAdvice.com and follow us on Twitter at @asksterlingmd.
Copyright © 2017 · Sterling Initiatives, LLC · Powered by WordPress
 

Straight, No Chaser: Quick Tips to Detoxify Yourself Naturally

Natural-Detox1

Here are 3-4 Quick Tips for each of the organs involved in naturally detoxifying you; I’ve limited what I’m giving you to do in the effort to make this manageable for you. I don’t think you’ll find anything here beyond your ability to implement into your routine. If you incorporate the items listed below, you’ll be well on your way to a healthier life.
Quick tips to naturally detox your skin: 

  1. Diet: think fruits and vegetables, and cut back on refined sugar.
  2. Sweat: You know I prefer you exercise, but if you’re healthy enough, the sauna works too. Or you can just move to Texas in the summer.
  3. Exfoliation is a beautiful thing. There are dozens of ways to do it. Find one that works for you.
  4. Hydrate and moisturize. You spend too much time in the sun and lose too much water from your skin not to replenish (You get a bonus tip because your skin is such an important detox organ.).

Quick tips to naturally detox your lungs:

  1. Avoid inhaling cigarette and cigar smoke. Duh.
  2. Exercise makes your respiratory machinery more effective and efficient. Go for it.
  3. Learn to deep breathe. Take it in from your belly. Learn to breathe slowly and deeply. Yoga is a great complement to this.

Quick tips to naturally detox your kidneys:

  1. It’s all about fluids. Remember that your body is over 60% water, and you have to stay hydrated and keep flushing. I’ve discussed this previously but remember to get in at least 64 ounces of fluids a day.
  2. Learn about cranberries. Many of those urinary tract infections are successfully addressed by drinking cranberry juice.
  3. Remember that diabetes and high blood pressure are the most common causes of kidney disease. You want to detox your kidneys? Control your blood pressure and avoid/control diabetes.

Quick Tips to naturally detox your liver and intestines:

  1. Increase your water intake. Water makes your entire body function better but also softens your stools, facilitating transport.
  2. Increase your fiber intake. Fiber bulks your stools and makes it easier to expel.
  3. Decrease your alcohol intake. As everyone knows, alcohol will sufficiently damage your kidneys to the point where your body will be unable to eliminate many toxins. Liver disease is a very unpleasant experience and way to die.

It bears repeating: if all of this sound fundamental, it’s because it is. You have the ability to help yourself if you consistently apply basic health and wellness principles. You can do this.
Feel free to ask your SMA expert consultant any questions you may have on this topic.
Take the #72HoursChallenge, and join the community. As a thank you for being a valued subscriber to Straight, No Chaser, we’d like to offer you a complimentary 30-day membership at www.72hourslife.com. Just use the code #NoChaser, and yes, it’s ok if you share!
Order your copy of Dr. Sterling’s new books There are 72 Hours in a Day: Using Efficiency to Better Enjoy Every Part of Your Life and The 72 Hours in a Day Workbook: The Journey to The 72 Hours Life in 72 Days at Amazon or at www.72hourslife.com. Receive introductory pricing with orders!
Thanks for liking and following Straight, No Chaser! This public service provides a sample of what http://www.SterlingMedicalAdvice.com (SMA) and 844-SMA-TALK offers. Please share our page with your friends on WordPress, like us on Facebook SterlingMedicalAdvice.com and follow us on Twitter at @asksterlingmd.
Copyright © 2017 · Sterling Initiatives, LLC · Powered by WordPress

Straight, No Chaser: The Tragedy of Septic Shock

Septic Shock
There are bad days and then there are really bad days. In many ways, the occurrence of septic shock is a culmination of a lot of bad things that can happen to you. Septic shock is the condition your body finds itself in as a result, progression and complication of a serious infection. This infection overwhelms your body, producing a massive inflammatory reaction, bringing many complications along. These complications include a significant drop in your blood pressure and can also include organ failure, most notably of the heart and lungs. Septic shock doesn’t occur to just anyone. It most often occurs in those with weakened immunity in one form or other (elderly, immunocompromised, diabetics, recent surgery, infection or prolonged hospital stay, burn victims, newborns and the pregnant), and it is the single most common cause of death in intensive care units in the U.S. The most common cause of septic shock is pneumonia, but urinary tract and abdominal infections are also major causes.
Signs and symptoms are routine and include low blood pressure, confusion or other signs of altered mental status, fever, chills and a fast heart rate, weakness, shortness of breath and noticeably diminished urination. Don’t focus on that list, though. Septic shock is a situation where your physician will know it when s/he sees it. If something like this happened at home, you’d recognize that something horrible was wrong, and you’d find yourself in an emergency room.

septicshock

In terms of treatment, the ‘when’ is just as the important as ‘how’. The earlier this is diagnosed and treatment is started, the better chances of survival are. And let there be no doubt. Life is in the balance with this condition. Treatment simultaneously seeks to hold the patient up and support him/her while the underlying condition is being addressed. This is when the big guns are pulled in, including major antibiotics, intravenous fluids to rehydrate you, medications to support and enhance blood pressure and possible use of a breathing machine (ventilator) to ensure optimal oxygenation. Even surgery may be necessary to remove dead abdominal tissue, burn tissue or an abscess that may be the source of an infection.

The truth is septic shock carries a death (mortality) rate of 50%. It is always a bad situation and is best viewed as a medical miracle when survived as opposed to a treatment failure when death occurs. I can only wish you and your family the best if you find yourselves in this situation. Time is tissue.
Feel free to ask your SMA expert consultant any questions you may have on this topic.
Order your copy of Dr. Sterling’s new book Behind The Curtain: A Peek at Life from within the ER at jeffreysterlingbooks.com, iTunes, Amazon, Barnes and Nobles and wherever books are sold.
Thanks for liking and following Straight, No Chaser! This public service provides a sample of what http://www.SterlingMedicalAdvice.com (SMA) and 844-SMA-TALK offers. Please share our page with your friends on WordPress, like us on Facebook SterlingMedicalAdvice.com and follow us on Twitter at @asksterlingmd.
Copyright © 2017 · Sterling Initiatives, LLC · Powered by WordPress

Straight, No Chaser: High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)

hypertension-34

High blood pressure is called the silent killer. It’s common for me to see someone who thought they were ‘fine’ drop dead from its effects, never knowing it was about to happen and not having been aware of the warning signs and risk factors.
In lay terms, your heart is just a muscular pump pushing blood (containing oxygen and nutrients) around the body keeping stuff alive. The more you poison that pump (by ingesting unhealthy foods and inhaling other toxins) and strain the muscle by adding weight and clogging its vessels so it has to pump against more force (by being obese, not exercising and engaging in other unhealthy behaviors), the more likely that muscle is to strain until it gives out. Once it does, blood isn’t delivering what’s needed to your vital organs, and that’s when bad stuff happens.
bloodpressureThe vital organs in question and those bad effects include the following:
• The heart itself (no blood flow and no oxygen = heart attack; when the heart’s not strong enough to pump blood around the body = congestive heart failure)
• The blood vessels, especially the heart’s main offshoot, the aorta (too much strain = aneurysm, an outpouching from the main tubular system, stealing valuable blood from the rest of the body)
• The brain (no blood flow and no oxygen = stroke; aneursyms also occur in the brain)
• The kidneys (not enough blood flow or adequate enough function to clear the toxins from the kidney = renal failure)
• The eyes (poor blood flow and/or diseased eye blood vessels leads to vision loss)

blood_pressure_5_treat-img_1280x720-jpg

Bottom line: The heart is a muscle best thought of as a machine. Here’s three easy things you can do to reduce your risks.
• Get off your butt. Any exercise helps to get your heart pumping and blood flowing; strive for 20” three times a week at the very least.
• Close your mouth. Everything in moderation is cool, but introduce some fruits and vegetables into your life.
• Lose the salt shaker. At least taste your food first. It’s likely the food was already prepared with salt.
Did I mention stop smoking? Any questions?
Feel free to ask your SMA expert consultant any questions you may have on this topic.
Order your copy of Dr. Sterling’s new book Behind The Curtain: A Peek at Life from within the ER at jeffreysterlingbooks.com, iTunes, Amazon, Barnes and Nobles and wherever books are sold.
Thanks for liking and following Straight, No Chaser! This public service provides a sample of what http://www.SterlingMedicalAdvice.com (SMA) and 844-SMA-TALK offers. Please share our page with your friends on WordPress, like us on Facebook SterlingMedicalAdvice.com and follow us on Twitter at @asksterlingmd.
Copyright © 2016 · Sterling Initiatives, LLC · Powered by WordPress

Straight, No Chaser: Quick Tips to Detoxify Yourself Naturally

Natural-Detox1

Here are 3-4 Quick Tips for each of the organs involved in naturally detoxifying you; I’ve limited what I’m giving you to do in the effort to make this manageable for you. I don’t think you’ll find anything here beyond your ability to implement into your routine. If you incorporate the items listed below, you’ll be well on your way to a healthier life.
Quick tips to naturally detox your skin: 

  1. Diet: think fruits and vegetables, and cut back on refined sugar.
  2. Sweat: You know I prefer you exercise, but if you’re healthy enough, the sauna works too. Or you can just move to Texas in the summer.
  3. Exfoliation is a beautiful thing. There are dozens of ways to do it. Find one that works for you.
  4. Hydrate and moisturize. You spend too much time in the sun and lose too much water from your skin not to replenish (You get a bonus tip because your skin is such an important detox organ.).

Quick tips to naturally detox your lungs:

  1. Avoid inhaling cigarette and cigar smoke. Duh.
  2. Exercise makes your respiratory machinery more effective and efficient. Go for it.
  3. Learn to deep breathe. Take it in from your belly. Learn to breathe slowly and deeply. Yoga is a great complement to this.

Quick tips to naturally detox your kidneys:

  1. It’s all about fluids. Remember that your body is over 60% water, and you have to stay hydrated and keep flushing. I’ve discussed this previously but remember to get in at least 64 ounces of fluids a day.
  2. Learn about cranberries. Many of those urinary tract infections are successfully addressed by drinking cranberry juice.
  3. Remember that diabetes and high blood pressure are the most common causes of kidney disease. You want to detox your kidneys? Control your blood pressure and avoid/control diabetes.

Quick Tips to naturally detox your liver and intestines:

  1. Increase your water intake. Water makes your entire body function better but also softens your stools, facilitating transport.
  2. Increase your fiber intake. Fiber bulks your stools and makes it easier to expel.
  3. Decrease your alcohol intake. As everyone knows, alcohol will sufficiently damage your kidneys to the point where your body will be unable to eliminate many toxins. Liver disease is a very unpleasant experience and way to die.

It bears repeating: if all of this sound fundamental, it’s because it is. You have the ability to help yourself if you consistently apply basic health and wellness principles. You can do this.
Feel free to ask any questions you may have on this topic.
Order your copy of Dr. Sterling’s new book Behind The Curtain: A Peek at Life from within the ER at jeffreysterlingbooks.com, iTunes, Amazon, Barnes and Nobles and wherever books are sold.
Thanks for liking and following Straight, No Chaser! This public service provides a sample of what http://www.SterlingMedicalAdvice.com (SMA) and 844-SMA-TALK offers. Please share our page with your friends on WordPress, like us on Facebook SterlingMedicalAdvice.com and follow us on Twitter at @asksterlingmd.
Copyright © 2016 · Sterling Initiatives, LLC · Powered by WordPress

Straight, No Chaser: The Tragedy of Septic Shock

Septic Shock
There are bad days and then there are really bad days. In many ways, the occurrence of septic shock is a culmination of a lot of bad things that can happen to you. Septic shock is the condition your body finds itself in as a result, progression and complication of a serious infection. This infection overwhelms your body, producing a massive inflammatory reaction, bringing many complications along. These complications include a significant drop in your blood pressure and can also include organ failure, most notably of the heart and lungs. Septic shock doesn’t occur to just anyone. It most often occurs in those with weakened immunity in one form or other (elderly, immunocompromised, diabetics, recent surgery, infection or prolonged hospital stay, burn victims, newborns and the pregnant), and it is the single most common cause of death in intensive care units in the U.S. The most common cause of septic shock is pneumonia, but urinary tract and abdominal infections are also major causes.
Signs and symptoms are routine and include low blood pressure, confusion or other signs of altered mental status, fever, chills and a fast heart rate, weakness, shortness of breath and noticeably diminished urination. Don’t focus on that list, though. Septic shock is a situation where your physician will know it when s/he sees it. If something like this happened at home, you’d recognize that something horrible was wrong, and you’d find yourself in an emergency room.

septicshock

In terms of treatment, the ‘when’ is just as the important as ‘how’. The earlier this is diagnosed and treatment is started, the better chances of survival are. And let there be no doubt. Life is in the balance with this condition. Treatment simultaneously seeks to hold the patient up and support him/her while the underlying condition is being addressed. This is when the big guns are pulled in, including major antibiotics, intravenous fluids to rehydrate you, medications to support and enhance blood pressure and possible use of a breathing machine (ventilator) to ensure optimal oxygenation. Even surgery may be necessary to remove dead abdominal tissue, burn tissue or an abscess that may be the source of an infection.

The truth is septic shock carries a death (mortality) rate of 50%. It is always a bad situation and is best viewed as a medical miracle when survived as opposed to a treatment failure when death occurs. I can only wish you and your family the best if you find yourselves in this situation. Time is tissue.
Feel free to ask your SMA expert consultant any questions you may have on this topic.
Order your copy of Dr. Sterling’s new book Behind The Curtain: A Peek at Life from within the ER at jeffreysterlingbooks.com, iTunes, Amazon, Barnes and Nobles and wherever books are sold.
Thanks for liking and following Straight, No Chaser! This public service provides a sample of what http://www.SterlingMedicalAdvice.com (SMA) and 844-SMA-TALK offers. Please share our page with your friends on WordPress, like us on Facebook SterlingMedicalAdvice.com and follow us on Twitter at @asksterlingmd.
Copyright © 2016 · Sterling Initiatives, LLC · Powered by WordPress

Straight, No Chaser: Quick Tips to Detoxify Yourself Naturally

Natural-Detox1

Here are 3-4 Quick Tips for each of the organs involved in naturally detoxifying you; I’ve limited what I’m giving you to do in the effort to make this manageable for you. I don’t think you’ll find anything here beyond your ability to implement into your routine. If you incorporate the items listed below, you’ll be well on your way to a healthier life.
Quick tips to naturally detox your skin:

  1. Diet: think fruits and vegetables, and cut back on refined sugar.
  2. Sweat: You know I prefer you exercise, but if you’re healthy enough, the sauna works too. Or you can just move to Texas in the summer.
  3. Exfoliation is a beautiful thing. There are dozens of ways to do it. Find one that works for you.
  4. Hydrate and moisturize. You spend too much time in the sun and lose too much water from your skin not to replenish (You get a bonus tip because your skin is such an important detox organ.).

Quick tips to naturally detox your lungs:

  1. Avoid inhaling cigarette and cigar smoke. Duh.
  2. Exercise makes your respiratory machinery more effective and efficient. Go for it.
  3. Learn to deep breathe. Take it in from your belly. Learn to breathe slowly and deeply. Yoga is a great complement to this.

Quick tips to naturally detox your kidneys:

  1. It’s all about fluids. Remember that your body is over 60% water, and you have to stay hydrated and keep flushing. I’ve discussed this previously but remember to get in at least 64 ounces of fluids a day.
  2. Learn about cranberries. Many of those urinary tract infections are successfully addressed by drinking cranberry juice.
  3. Remember that diabetes and high blood pressure are the most common causes of kidney disease. You want to detox your kidneys? Control your blood pressure and avoid/control diabetes.

Quick Tips to naturally detox your liver and intestines:

  1. Increase your water intake. Water makes your entire body function better but also softens your stools, facilitating transport.
  2. Increase your fiber intake. Fiber bulks your stools and makes it easier to expel.
  3. Decrease your alcohol intake. As everyone knows, alcohol will sufficiently damage your kidneys to the point where your body will be unable to eliminate many toxins. Liver disease is a very unpleasant experience and way to die.

It bears repeating: if all of this sound fundamental, it’s because it is. You have the ability to help yourself if you consistently apply basic health and wellness principles. You can do this.
Copyright © 2013 · Sterling Initiatives, LLC · Powered by WordPress

Straight, No Chaser: The Tragedy of Septic Shock

Septic Shock
There are bad days and then there are really bad days. In many ways, the occurrence of septic shock is a culmination of a lot of bad things that can happen to you. Septic shock is the condition your body finds itself in as a result, progression and complication of a serious infection (The most common cause is pneumonia, but urinary tract and abdominal infections are also major causes.). This infection overwhelms your body, producing a massive inflammatory reaction, bringing many complications along. These complications include a significant drop in your blood pressure and can also include organ failure, most notably of the heart and lungs. Septic shock doesn’t occur to just anyone. It most often occurs in those with weakened immunity in one form or other (elderly, immunocompromised, diabetics, recent surgery, infection or prolonged hospital stay, burn victims, newborns and the pregnant), and it is the single most common cause of death in intensive care units in the U.S.
Signs and symptoms are routine and include low blood pressure, confusion or other signs of altered mental status, fever, chills and a fast heart rate, weakness, shortness of breath and noticeably diminished urination. Don’t focus on that list, though. Septic shock is a situation where your physician will know it when s/he sees it. If something like this happened at home, you’d recognize that something horrible was wrong, and you’d find yourself in an emergency room.

In terms of treatment, the ‘when’ is just as the important as ‘how’. The earlier this is diagnosed and treatment is started, the better chances of survival are. And let there be no doubt. Life is in the balance with this condition. Treatment simultaneously seeks to hold the patient up and support him/her while the underlying condition is being addressed. This is when the big guns are pulled in, including major antibiotics, intravenous fluids to rehydrate you, medications to support and enhance blood pressure and possible use of a breathing machine (ventilator) to ensure optimal oxygenation. Even surgery may be necessary to remove dead abdominal tissue, burn tissue or an abscess that may be the source of an infection.

The truth is septic shock carries a death (mortality) rate of 50%. It is always a bad situation and is best viewed as a medical miracle when survived as opposed to a treatment failure when death occurs. I can only wish you and your family the best if you find yourselves in this situation. Time is tissue.
Copyright © 2013 · Sterling Initiatives, LLC · Powered by WordPress

Straight, No Chaser: The Week In Review

week-in-review-header3-589x237
Happy Sunday, everyone. In the midst another all-time best week here, I got to discuss the topics I spend most of my time discussing with patients in the emergency department: high blood pressure, smoking and obesity. What that triad has in common is how they manifest in many different disease presentations. Well, at least now you know. I guess drinking and STDs will have to wait for another time. Here’s your week in review. Feel free to click the underlined topics to access the original posts.
We started the week on Sunday reviewing how the nerve gas sarin, allegedly used against the citizens of Syria, creates death and disease. Someone actually asked me why the victim in the lead picture was wearing shaving cream. That’s not shaving cream, folks. Victims wallow in their own secretions from everywhere, including salivation, excessive tearing, runny nose, diarrhea, urination, vomiting and lung secretions before they die of respiratory failure. We certain wish the best for the people of Syria and the country as a whole.
We spent Monday reviewing high blood pressure (hypertension), also known as the silent killer because yes, it can cause you to drop dead without knowing what happened. Just remember to try not to poison the pump that delivers oxygen and nourishment throughout the body (That would be your heart!). In part two of our hypertension review, we gave you numbers to know for monitoring your blood pressure and cues as to when that high pressure warrants a visit to the ER. I’d suggest you commit a few brain cells to that information. That’s information that could save your life, given the time dependent nature of treating the strokes and heart attacks that result from high blood pressure.
On Tuesday, we began reviewing smoking cessation and the benefits associated with it. We also discussed best practices in achieving smoking cessation. It remains interesting that many more people use the patch to stop (and many do so successfully), but stopping cold turkey remains the most effective way of stopping, for those able to pull it off. Consider the 10 Quick Tips I offered and consider working with your physician on the START method. I know this is a struggle. Over two-thirds of smokers want to stop, and over half attempt to stop every year. I wish you the best if you’re in that group.
On Wednesday, we took a look at obesity in America. Based on the data, it’s clear more people are choosing the pursuit of happiness (in excess) over the pursuit of health. That said, we’re still doing something right, as our life expectancy continues to increase despite approximately two-thirds of us being overweight (although we’re living longer with more disease).
On Thursday, we reviewed the health risks of obesity and introduced you to the caloric equation, which largely determines if you’re gaining or losing weight. It’s actually a pretty simple concept that you might consider learning, because every bit you lose reduces the load on your heart (in particular) and other organs. These relative, incremental amounts do matter.
Friday was a fun day, because we discussed solutions instead of just problems. We talked about how to lose weight the good old-fashioned way, reviewing how to pace yourself, set reasonable expectations and lose healthily. Just remember it’s going to take a lifestyle change, not a fad. The tortoise always did beat the hare. On Friday, we also discussed how to jump-start your metabolism, regardless of age. The Quick Tips I gave you couldn’t be simpler and do make a difference.
On Saturday, we completely switched gears and reviewed the painful topic of hemorrhoids. Don’t forget the self-help tip ‘WASH’, and trust me, your goal is to stay away from the ER or surgeon with these. Deal with them sooner rather than later, before it becomes a pain for everyone involved! Saturday, we returned to smoking – this time of the cigar variety. I had to bring the Surgeon General along to point out the cigar smoking is not a safe alternative to cigarettes. Can you believe a single large cigar contains as much nicotine as an entire pack of cigarettes? Who knew?
Your comments, concerns and disagreements are welcome. My goal is always to provide you information that you incorporate into making your lives happier and healthier, not to be the ‘health morality police’. As the obesity posts noted, there is too often a crossroads between health and happiness. When you’re younger, you really are investing in your health to secure your future happiness, because as you age, there is a much higher correlation being your health and your happiness. My mental health colleagues will be quick to tell you how the lack of health as you age leads to higher rates of depression and suicide in the elderly. Your goal is to head down the road that offers both health and happiness. And speaking of aging…
Copyright © 2013 · Sterling Initiatives, LLC · Powered by WordPress

Straight, No Chaser: High Blood Pressure

bp_chartbloodpressure
High blood pressure is called the silent killer. It’s common for me to see someone who thought they were ‘fine’ drop dead from its effects, never knowing it was about to happen and not having been aware of the warning signs and risk factors.
In lay terms, your heart is just a muscular pump pushing blood (containing oxygen and nutrients) around the body keeping stuff alive. The more you poison that pump (by ingesting unhealthy foods and inhaling other toxins) and strain the muscle by adding weight and clogging its vessels so it has to pump against more force (by being obese, not exercising and engaging in other unhealthy behaviors), the more likely that muscle is to strain until it gives out. Once it does, blood isn’t delivering what’s needed to your vital organs, and that’s when bad stuff happens.
The vital organs in question and those bad effects include the following:
• The heart itself (no blood flow and no oxygen = heart attack; when the heart’s not strong enough to pump blood around the body = congestive heart failure)
• The blood vessels, especially the heart’s main offshoot, the aorta (too much strain = aneurysm, an outpouching from the main tubular system, stealing valuable blood from the rest of the body)
• The brain (no blood flow and no oxygen = stroke; aneursyms also occur in the brain)
• The kidneys (not enough blood flow or adequate enough function to clear the toxins from the kidney = renal failure)
• The eyes (poor blood flow and/or diseased eye blood vessels leads to vision loss)
Bottom line: The heart is a muscle best thought of as a machine. Here’s three easy things you can do to reduce your risks.
Get off your butt. Any exercise helps to get your heart pumping and blood flowing; strive for 20” three times a week at the very least.
Close your mouth. Everything in moderation is cool, but introduce some fruits and vegetables into your life.
Lose the salt shaker. At least taste your food first. It’s likely the food was already prepared with salt.
Did I mention stop smoking? Any questions?
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Straight, No Chaser: This is Specifically For the Faint of Heart

faint
Don’t faints seem mysterious?  It’s as if your computer crashed and had to reboot.  Although we never seemingly figure out why computers are so crazy, fainting (syncope) is reducible to a common denominator: something causes a decrease in blood flow to your brain.  Recall that oxygen and other needed nutrients are carried in blood, so even a temporary stoppage or shortage of blood flow shuts things down.  Now extrapolate that to strokes and comas, which are often due to serious and prolonged causes of blockage to the blood vessels supplying the brain.  This is a prime example of why good blood flow and good health are so important.  The brain is a highly efficient, oxygen and energy-guzzling organ.  Shut it down for even a few seconds, and bad things start to happen.  Consider fainting a warning sign.
I’m going to start by offering some Quick Tips to help if you find yourself around someone who has fainted.  Then, I will get into the weeds of why these things happen for those interested.  I’m doing this so you can check these and determine where your risks may be.

  • Call 911.  Make sure the person is still breathing and has a pulse.  If not, start CPR.
  • Loosen clothing, especially around the neck.
  • Elevate the legs above the level of the chest.
  • If the fainter vomited, turn him/her to the side to help avoid choking and food going down the airway (aspiration).
  • A diabetic may have been given instructions to eat or drink something if s/he feels as if s/he is going to faint.  If you know this, a faint would be a good time to administer any glucose gel or supplies advised by a physician.  Prompt treatment of low blood sugar reactions is a life-saver.  Discuss and coordinate how you can perform this effort on behalf of your friends and family with their physicians.
  • If it’s possible that the faint is part of some heat emergency (heat exhaustion or heat stroke), follow these steps to save a life (click here).

Actually, faints are caused by all kinds of medical problems.  I list a few notable causes below, but whether the front end difficulty is with the heart pumping, the nerves conducting, or the content of oxygen or energy being delivered, the end result is the same.

  • Decreased nerve tone (vasovagal syncope): This is the most common cause of faints, and contrary to what you might think, it happens more often in kids and young adults than in the elderly.  Understand that your nerves actually regulate blood flow (analogous to a train conductor telling the heart to speed up or pump harder or not).  Changes in nerve tone can result in errant signals being sent, transiently resulting in low flow.
  • Diseases and conditions that affect the nervous system and/or ability to regulate blood pressure: Alcoholism, dehydration, diabetes and malnutrition are conditions that may depress the nervous system.  Alternatively, coughing, having a bowel movement (especially if straining) and urination may abnormally stimulate the system.  In the elderly and those bedridden, simply standing can cause fainting due to difficulty regulating blood pressure.  In this case, standing causes a sharp drop in blood pressure.
  • Anemia: A deficiency in blood cells can lead to a deficiency in oxygen delivery to the brain.
  • Arrhythmias (irregular heart beats): Inefficiency in your heartbeat leads to unstable delivery of blood to the brain.
  • Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia): Low energy states can deplete the body of what it needs to operate effectively, leading to low blood flow.
  • Medications (especially those treating high blood pressure): anything that lowers the heart’s ability to vigorously pump blood around the body can leave the brain inadequately supplied, leading to a blackout.  Let’s include illicit drugs and alcohol in this category.
  • Panic attacks: Hyperventilation caused by anxiety and panic upset the balance between oxygen and carbon dioxide in the brain, which can lead to fainting spells.
  • Seizures: Here’s a chicken and egg scenario.  A prolonged faint can lead to a seizure, and seizures lead to periods of unconsciousness, during and after the seizure.  The lack of oxygen is a common denominator.