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Jan 28

Medical news: Blood test could detect heart disease in people who show no symptoms

Posted by jfrancis in UT Southwest Medical Center , testing method 2011 , symptoms , Protein , 


blood testWhat if you could find out if you are at a high risk of heart disease before showing any symptoms? What if you had the opportunity to save your life before you were even aware that you were at risk of a premature death in the first place? You'd probably go for it, right? Well thanks to new information provided by researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center this may all be possible one day. These researchers have recently discovered a new blood testing method that could help doctors detect heart disease in patients who show no symptoms.

This new test looks for a protein called cardiac troponin T (cTnT), which research has discovered that people with detectable levels of this protein are about seven times more likely to die within six years from heart disease. So far researchers have tested for this protein on more than 3,500 different samples of blood provided by individuals, and out of that 3,500 25% of the samples were detected to contain cTnT with the use of this highly sensitive testing method.

This new testing method is actually just a more sensitive version of a standard blood test normally used to determine if someone is having a heart attack. What makes the sensitive test so different from the standard test is that the standard test can only detect cTnT in a very small percentage of the population, limiting it's ability for assessing risk in people who show no symptoms of heart disease. The sensitive test however can detect cTnT in almost everyone with chronic heart failure and chronic coronary artery disease, even before they show any symptoms.

Jan 26

How to motivate yourself to exercise

Posted by jfrancis in workout motivators of 2011 , work out , staying active for


Are you having trouble motivating yourself to work out? exercisDo you often find yourself creating a slue of excuses as to why you should exercise later? Well, by coming up with these excuses you are doing your body an injustice. Just as college freshman learn that they have to take responsibility for themselves when it comes to their duties as a student, we too must learn to take responsibility of our bodies. By coming up with these excuses you aren't hurting anybody but yourself. Thousands, possibly millions, of people in America are also suffering with lack of motivation to exercise, but in actuality it doesn't have to be a dreadful chore. In fact, it can be a highlight of your day, all you have to do is find the right motivators. Try giving these tips a try and see if they help motivate you to get up and work out.

Do something you enjoy

There's nothing worse than doing something you don't want to do or have no interest in. It's a known fact that people who have to do things they don't like normally find it harder to get through that task. So why do the same thing with exercising, because that sure won't motivate you to do it again. Just because you're exercising doesn't mean you have to follow some of the more common ways to get active like using exercise machines. Maybe you like to ride bikes, play tennis, roller blade, run, power walk, play baseball, walk, play soccer, jump rope, do gymnastics, or whatever else you can think of, the options are endless! With all these options chose something that would actually make you want to get up and get moving.

Jan 24

Ten foods of 2011 that will give you more energy

Posted by jfrancis in Yogurt , vitamins , Sugar , nutrients , more energy 2011 , lifestyle , healthy


Our world today is a world filled with constant movement. There is no such thing as slowing down, only speeding up and those who can't keep up with this pace are at a high risk of being left behind. So how do we keep up with this fast pace world? For those who are not designed like the energizer bunny, many of us turn to coffee and other energy drinks and foods riddled with high doses of caffeine, sugar, and other unknown substances. But did you know there are other, healthier alternatives to these quick energy boosters that are not only good for your body but will also give you more energy over longer periods of time without the risk of a sugar crash side effect? It's true, Mother Nature has provided us with an abundance of resources that can help us keep up with this fast pace world and still feel good.

Here is a list of ten foods that will give you more energy:whole grains

Whole grains

Jan 18

No more shots: New magnetic pill system

Posted by jfrancis in vaccine 2011 , new shot method , new pill system , new


If you had the option of getting a pill or a shot when visiting the doctshot vs. pillor many of us would ask for the pill hands down. It's quick, simple, and a lot less painful. Unfortunately many of us do not have this option because of the fact that pills, along with other orally administered medications, do not dissolve at the exact location in the gastrointestinal tract needed that would allow it to be absorbed into the blood stream. Thanks to researches at Brown University this may soon change because of their new magnetic pill system.

This harmless system works by holding a pill in place inside the intestines wherever it needs to be. It is believed that this new breakthrough could allow a whole new way to deliver drugs to patients, including those with cancer and diabetes. This system can also allow scientists to understand where in the intestines different drugs are best absorbed.

So far the magnetic pill system has only been tested on rats, but progress to larger animals is on the way. How this system works relies on two key components. An ordinary looking gel capsule containing a tiny magnet and an external magnet that can sense the force between it and the capsule and alter that force as necessary to pull the pill as needed. And because the pill is detectable by x-rays, the researchers have been able to track the pill as it passed through the rats.

Jan 17

Top 5 tips for 2011 to naturally improve the skin

Posted by jfrancis in Wrinkles , skin diet 2011 , skin care diets 2011 , skin


It's not unknown that today's societyHealthyskin is obsessed with looking young and beautiful. You can't even go an hour without hearing or seeing at least one promotion for some type of beauty product. There are a whole range of products available to enhance different parts of the body such as hair, eyes, teeth, feet, hands, etc. Out of all these areas though, it's our skin that is targeted the most because it is our skin that is the most noticed part of our body. When we see another person for the first time it's their skin that in one of the things we notice first, and with that in mind it is no wonder why we want to take such good care of our skin. It's not difficult to get your hands on some kind of skin enhancement product today, especially with all the vast variety of brands offered. There are products to remove acne, reduce wrinkles, cover up blemishes, add lift to the skin, make your skin look younger, hydrate, add color and so much more! Unfortunately, although these products may make your skin look better at the moment many of these products can result in irritation, dehydration, peeling, and acne. So before reaching for the Revlon or Almay first try using these natural skin improvement methods, that are not only good for your skin and your body but have no negative side effects.

  1. Improve your digestion- Many skin disorders such as acne and rosacea are often associated with a bad digestive system. So improve your digestive system by drinking eight glasses of water daily and eating foods rich in fiber.
  2. Invigorate your circulation- An inactive body negatively affects the skin and can cause puffiness, bloating, and acne. Strengthen your circulation by exercising, stretching, doing yoga, walking, running, getting a therapeutic massage, or what ever else you can think of. 
  3. Avoid excess sugar- Most people are unaware of this but excess sugar is a major cause of premature aging. As more and more sugar enters the bloodstream, over time this could result in a process called glycation which reduces elasticity in the skin and causes it to wrinkle and sag.
  4. Eat good fats- Essential fatty acids are needed for your body to function properly. Essential fats make cell membranes, hormones and other body chemicals. They are also believed to keep your hearty healthy, reduce inflammation, and possibly prevent cancer. A few sources that contain essential fats are flaxseed and walnut oil, cold water fish such as salmon and sardines, and fish oil supplements.
  5. Sleep regularly- sleeping regularly gives our body the chance it needs to work on repairing cells.

Our skin has the potential to appear at it's fullest, but in order for it to get there we have to take care of our skin as best as possible. Just throwing on some cover up and lip gloss is not taking care of your skin, it's just making it appear better at the moment when the truth is it is still as damaged as it was when your put on the cover up in the first place. In order to enhance your natural beauty you need natural techniques, and no artificial product can ever be the perfect substitute for the real thing.

Jan 13

San Francisco bans Happy Meals

Posted by jfrancis in San Francisco , Overweight , meal , McDonald , Happy Meal , fast food , 


happy meal

For those with young children or those who have experience with young children, many of you know first hand how kids love to go to McDonalds to get a happy meal so they can find the next toy to add to their collection. Well for everyone who lives in San Francisco, California this will be no more. For those of you who haven't heard yet, San Francisco has recently announced that on December 2011 an ordinance will be put in effect official banning Happy Meals. Under this ordinance restaurants may include a toy with a meal if the food and drink combined contains less than 600 calories, and if less than 35% of those calories comes from fat. It is also required that restaurants include fruits and vegetables with all kid meals that come with toys.

A typical McDonald's Happy Meal, which consists of a cheese burger, small fries and a small drink, has 590 calories, 210 of these calories coming from fat. A second most common Happy Meal would be the 6 piece chicken nugget meal which has 620 calories, with 260 of those calories coming from fat. With these numbers the happy meal is incapable of meeting the required standards of the ordinance, and as of December 2011 will be removed from all San Francisco McDonalds restaurants.

Jan 10

Childhood obesity: Stats, Facts and Solutions

Posted by jfrancis in statistics , solution , Overweight , Obesity , fat , fast food , facts , diabetes , 


With all of the advertisemChildhood obesityents, arguments, and debates going on it would be nearly impossible for any American not to know about childhood obesity and the many dangers associated with it. This is a US epidemic on the rise! Children just 9 and 10 years old are developing serious health issues like type 2 diabetes, respiratory illnesses and heart disease because of their poor eating habits and lack of exercise. With our always advancing technology it has become far too easy for children to just sit in one place for hours at a time and have something to entertain them, like computer, television and video games. Throw in the ever growing number of fast food restaurants found virtually everywhere, and you have yourself a perfect childhood obesity concoction. If you're still not convinced of how bad childhood obesity has gotten then let me enlighten you a bit with some interesting facts about childhood obesity.

Statistics about childhood obesity

  • Obesity in children has increased 3x more than it was 30 years ago. In 1980 obesity in children, ages 6-11, was a mere 6.5% but by 2008 it increased to 19.6%.
  • Today, about 25 million children are either overweight or obese
  • Obesity is the second highest reason for preventable death in America
  • 70% of obese children already have at least 1 risk factor of having heart disease
  • 85% of all the children diagnosed with type 2 diabetes were obese
  • Children treated for obesity are about 3x more expensive for the health care system than children with normal weight
  • Obese children are most likely to grow up as obese youth and as a result more prone to joint problems, cancers, cardiovascular diseases, poor self esteem, and several other health, social, and psychological problems

Now that you know the statistics, a few of you may be wondering what some of the causes of childhood obesity are. Well the causes of childhood obesity are not all that unpredictable. In actuality they are the most obvious causes you can think of, like unhealthy eating and lack of exercise.

Jan 06

Ways to maximize sleep efficiency

Posted by jfrancis in sleep , night terrors , medical , MD , insomnia , health , apnea


Today's world ways to maximize your sleep efficiencyis a fast pace world filled with busy schedules, long work hours, and never ending movement. With all this restless energy it is not uncommon to hear many people complaining about how little sleep they are getting and how sleeping disorders such as insomnia, night terrors, and apnea are on the rise. Because of its accessibility, many people have turned to sleeping pills filled with unneeded chemicals and dangerous side effects , but in reality reaching maximum sleeping efficiency is as easy as just altering a few personal habits.

Here are a few tricks that can help you achieve more sleep without the requirements of any medical substances.

  • Create and maintain a sleeping schedule by going to bed the same time every night and waking up the same time every morning. Keep to this schedule even on weekend and when life is getting a little bit hectic.

Jan 05

Cervical cancer prevention: Don't become a statistic

Posted by jfrancis in women's health , prevention , pre-cancers , Pap test , January , HPV , cervical


ForCervical cancer prevention: Don't become a statistic those who are not already aware, the month of January is Cervical Cancer Screening Month. This is the time to alert all women to get themselves tested for cervical cancer and HPV, because as the second leading cancer in women worldwide it important that this issue is brought to the forefront. Yet despite its seriousness, there are in fact ways to prevent this disease from developing. The first way is to find and treat pre-cancers before they have the chance to develop into true cancers and the second way is to prevent the pre-cancers from happening in the first place.

The most effective way of preventing cervical cancer and locating pre-cancers is by having regular screenings. The most common way of screening is through the Pap test, also known as a Pap smear. Now many women may be wondering what they should be doing to take the necessary precautions to prevent this disease. Fortunately the American Cancer Society has developed a set of guidelines to help with early detection.

  • All women should begin cervical cancer testing three years after they have started having sexual intercourse. Women who partake in a conventional test should be tested annually, while women who use a liquid based Pap test should be tested every two years.
  • Starting at age 30, women who have had three or more normal test results in a row can be tested less often. Although some women, such as women with a weakened immune system, women who were exposed to DES before birth, and women with a history of treatment for pre cancer should continue to have annual screenings.
  • Women over thirty with healthy immune systems and no abnormal screening results can be tested only every three years.
  • Women 70 years of age or older who have had three or more normal test results in a row and have not have had any abnormal test results in the past ten years can chose to stop having cervical cancer screenings. Women with a history of cervical cancer, HIV infection, weak immune system, or were exposed to DES before birth should continue with testing as long as they are healthy enough.
  • Women who have had a hysterectomy may also chose to stop having cervical cancer screening as long as that hysterectomy wasn’t as a result of a cervical cancer treatment. If it was, then they should continue with testing. Women who have had a hysterectomy without the removal of the cervix must still continue with regular testing.

Though having the Pap test done is a great step towards the prevention of cervical cancer, it is not the only one. The most important risk factor for developing cervical cancer is infection with the human papilloma virus (a.k.a. HPV). So it is vital that in addition with getting the Pap smear all women should also talk to their doctors about being tested for HPV.

Jan 03

Top 10 foods to help you lose weight

Posted by jfrancis in weight loss , Nutrition , health , Diet


Have you ever had that problem where you’re trying to do your body right by eating better and less but for some reason no matter how much you eat you still feel hungry? Well here is a list of the top ten foods that you can eat that is not only healthy for you but will also make you feel fuller with fewer calories per gram. In addition, some of these foods will make you feel less hungry all together by altering some of your intestinal hormone levels.