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Let’s Talk Minerals

mineralsJamie bit into a slice of her dad’s homemade pizza and immediately frowned.

“What’s wrong with this pizza?” she asked. “It tastes different.”

“I used low-sodium tomato sauce and low-sodium cheese on it this time,” her father said.

“What was wrong with how it was before?” asked Jamie as she set her slice down.

Her father took a deep breath and sighed. “The doctor told me that I have high blood pressure and that I need to eat less sodium. Because salt is almost one-half sodium, I’m cutting down on all salty foods. He says we’ll get used to it.”

“I’m not so sure about that,” Jamie said, and grimaced. “If sodium is so bad for you, why do you need it at all?”

Her father thought for a minute. “That’s a good question. Sodium is a mineral, and our body needs minerals to function properly.”

Minerals are non-living, chemical substances that come from the soil. Plants store minerals in their stems and …

The Silent Deadly Killer: Snoring

snoringMost people are unaware that snoring is not only a nuisance, it is a silent, deadly killer. Snoring is caused by the vibration of the muscles and tissues in the throat as air passes by during sleep. Science has now discovered that snoring is a sign that something bigger is amiss that cannot be ignored. Snoring affects over 40 million Americans today. It is a problem that is getting worse with time. Snoring is a sign of a worsening problem, Obstructive Sleep Apnea or OSA. Sadly, those who snore are not the ones who are even aware of it.

Some people are afraid to tell their partner or spouse that they snore and endure the condition, or in some cases sleep away from the snorer.

We need to become informed of this deadly problem and help those who are profoundly affected by it. Sadly my life has been affected by snoring. My ex-wife, a lifetime type 1 diabetic, with a whole host of health problems, was a snorer. But soon I began to realize that he simply wasn’t snoring, he would completely stop breathing during the night.

It started with a sudden change in his mood and his inability to stay awake, ANYWHERE. At night I would listen to him snore, he would take air in, and then I could hear as he struggled to release the air that had now become trapped behind his relaxed area of his throat, in essence, his throat had collapsed on top of his windpipe. He would continue to struggle to release the air until his brain finally recognized that he was going without oxygen and would wake him up to regain his breath. This would happen over and over. This didn’t allow him to enter the valuable, enriching part of our sleep that heals and sustains our bodies.

When I told him about it, he went through a long period of denial until it finally became too much to bear in his waking life. He was struggling to survive. Ultimately he was evaluated in a sleep center and prescribed a CPAP machine, although he ended up instead using a different anti snoring device after reading snoring mouthpiece reviews. It was a miserable existence, until he finally found the Good Morning Snore Solution. Don’t let this be you. Continue reading

You Don’t Have To Lose With Booze

sexual-assaultDaniel Reardon’s whole life lay ahead of him. The University of Maryland freshman had no history of alcohol abuse. But at his fraternity initiation party, he drank large amounts of beer through a funnel. Then his so-called friends poured bourbon down his throat. Daniel went into a coma. Several days later, he died.

Sixteen-year-old Brandon’s truck collided head-on with another truck. His friends Robert and Todd both died. Brandon suffered serious injuries. All three boys had been drinking, according to the Colorado State Highway Patrol.

Underage drinking threatens your physical, social, and emotional well-being. Make sure you know the facts.

Irreversible Harm

Throughout the United States, it is a crime to drink or provide alcohol to anyone under age 21. That age limit is not an arbitrary number. Rather, it helps protect young people from irreversible harm. Such harm can occur even if someone isn’t a “problem drinker.”

The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) says raising the drinking age to 21 …

Protect Skin: Prevention Means A Lot

protect-skinJared was slicing a bagel with a sharp knife. As the knife slid through the bottom of the bagel, it cut open his hand. Blood began gushing from the deep cut. Jared grabbed a towel and applied pressure, trying to squeeze the edges of the cut together. But 15 minutes later the wound was still bleeding. Jared’s mom took him to the emergency room for stitches.”

Jared dreaded the stitches. But, fortunately, the ER doctor had a better idea. “We can use a skin adhesive to hold the cut shut,” the doctor told Jared. “It works as well as stitches.

The Skinny on Skin

The skin adhesive used on Jared’s cut is just one of many new treatments available for skin injuries. All are designed to help these injuries stop bleeding and heal faster, better, and with less pain than such wounds used to cause.

The skin is the largest organ of the body, and it is very important to properly treat any injuries …

Cook International When Things Get Dull

cook-interlRachael ran down the hall To get to her International Foods class before the last buzzer. Each week the class studied a different country. On Fridays, they made some of the popular foods served there. Today they were cooking foods from Norway. When Rachael opened the door and inhaled, she scrunched up her nose.

“What is that smell?” she asked her friend Terri.

Terri laughed. “It’s called lutefisk (LOOT-fisk). I guess it does smell kind of strong.”

Rachael remembered that lutefisk was dried codfish soaked in lye, then cooked and served with a white sauce. “What else are we making today?”

Terry pointed at the board where the teacher had written the menu for the day. “It looks like we’re having lutefisk, boiled potatoes, and lefse (LEF-suh) with butter and brown sugar.”

“I missed class the day we talked about lefse,” Rachael said. “What is it?”

Terry said, “Think of it as a tortilla–with butter spread all over it and brown sugar sprinkled inside. …

Being Smart With Risk Taking

risk-managementBetween school and swim meets, Brandon is a busy guy. He compensates for his hectic schedule by being organized and planning his days in advance. Because he has swim practice most nights, for example, he gets part of his homework done during lunch and brings his books to meets so he can make use of his down time. He tends to stress out if plans change at the last minute.

Brandon’s sister Cindi generally finishes her homework on the bus to school. Her favorite sports? Skateboarding and downhill skiing. Last week, she walked into a store to buy a jacket, and ended up getting her ears pierced instead.

Brandon and Cindi may be living in the same family, but they are at opposite ends of the risk-taking scale. Brandon is cautious, a planner who likes to know what’s going to happen before it happens. Cindi is more spontaneous. She loves the thrill of the exotic and daring, and she thrives on fast, potentially dangerous …

Sleeping: Critical For Teens

good-night-sleeping“Everyone has trouble sleeping once in a while,” says Dr. Marks, who is the incoming president of the Society for Adolescent Medicine. “But, if you’re having trouble night in and night out, it may be the symptom of a larger problem such as depression or anxiety You don’t want to ignore that possibility.

“But more often, teens need help learning. how to fall asleep. It’s important to look at the sequence of what you’re doing at” night–and to make sure the last thing you do at night is something relaxing. I have one teen patient who told me, ‘I do my homework, practice my violin, and then go on-line to chat with my friends.’ I suggested to him that maybe he didn’t want to do the most stimulating activity right before he was trying to fall asleep. Now he chats on-line and then practices the violin to clear his head–and says switching the two activities has helped him fall asleep more easily.”

Parents, she …

Thyroid Issues: Spot Them Early And Win!

thyroid-issuesWhile training for the Olympic Games, track star Gail Devers began to experience weight loss, muscle weakness, and fatigue. For 2 1/2 years, Devers suffered from these symptoms until she was diagnosed with Graves’ disease in 1991. Graves’ disease is the most common cause of hyperthyroidism, a condition in which the body produces too much thyroid hormone. Many teens, especially young girls, develop it.

After undergoing radioactive iodine therapy to disable her thyroid and being placed on thyroid hormone replacement therapy, Devers now has the disorder under control. She went on to win three Olympic gold medals.

What Is the Thyroid?

Your thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland located at the base of your neck, at the spot where a bow tie would rest. It produces two hormones (thyroxine and triiodothyronine) that control your growth and metabolism. Everything from how quickly your body burns calories to your mood is controlled by your thyroid. As long as your thyroid is producing the right amount of hormones, …