How to recognize if your allergies are out of control

How to recognize if your allergies are out of control

In spring it’s the trees, in the summer it’s grass, in fall it’s ragweed, and in winter the dust gives you fits. Can you ever find relief from your allergies? From a runny nose to itchy eyes to fatigue, allergies are no fun to live with day in and day out. Maybe your allergies are mild enough that an occasional antihistamine does the trick or perhaps you’ve been dealing with allergy symptoms for months now without finding relief.

Not sure whether your allergy symptoms are normal? Here are the top signs they are out of control.

Constant Congestion

After a week or two of a runny nose and congestion, you should realize that you don’t have a cold, but that something else is going on. Since then you’ve been struggling to find the best treatment for your allergies. Exposure to allergens causes inflammation and excess mucous in your nasal passages, hence the constant nose blowing, headaches, and sinus pressure.

Itchy Nose

You try to avoid your allergy triggers as best you can, but your nose is still itchy all the time. If you’re not blowing your nose or on the verge of sneezing, then you’re rubbing your nose to relieve the constant itch. Sound familiar? Then you’re well acquainted with allergies.

Watery Eyes

Someone with bad allergies can often be singled out of a crowd based on the appearance of their eyes. Allergies can cause itchy, watery eyes. Frequent rubbing of your eyes and the fatigue caused by allergies can cause dark circles to appear under your eyes. Regardless, the constantly watery eyes are enough to make you want to cry!

Wheezing

Many people with asthma suffer from frequent wheezing, but wheezing can also accompany allergies. As you breath in and out a whistling sound can be heard. Due to narrowed airways, wheezing is something that requires medical attention.

For many people, allergies and asthma go hand in hand. Allergies worsen asthma symptoms. Wheezing, coughing, tightness in your chest, and shortness of breath may be signs of asthma. See an allergist to be tested if your breathing issues persist.

Low on Energy

It’s springtime, the flowers are blooming, and the sun is shining, so why do you feel so dragged out all the time? Allergies are likely to blame. When exposure to allergens such as pollen, dust, or pet dander mistakenly triggers an immune system response, it’s common for you to feel low on energy. As if that weren’t enough, congestion, sneezing, and a runny nose keep you from getting a good night’s rest, making you feel even more dragged out. Decide to take some medication to help? Then you’re getting hit a third time, as many antihistamine medications cause drowsiness.

Skin Conditions

An allergic response can also affect the skin. An itchy, dry rash that won’t seem to go away may be eczema. Hives are another type of allergic reaction. Causing red welts that may itch, hives may last hours or days. Chronic eczema rashes or frequent hives are a sign you need to see a doctor.

Depression

Include allergies in the long list of possible contributing factors for depression. The link is unclear, but seasonal allergies may actually affect more than your nose, eyes, and skin. They may also negatively impact your mood. Stuck indoors, a lack of energy, poor sleep, and feeling crummy may all be to blame. Anyone experiencing unexplainable feelings of sadness and hopelessness should make an appointment to see a medical expert.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

© 2009-2010 Keuilian Inc. 
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Please consult your physician prior to starting any exercise or diet program.

Ever wonder what’s in your water? Maybe it’s time to take a closer look.

Ever wonder what’s in your water? Maybe it’s time to take a closer look.

If you’re reading this article, you’re likely blessed to live in a part of the world with clean tap water. Thirsty? Need to wash dishes or take a shower? Just turn on the faucet and out comes water, fresh clean water that is essential for life. Since your body is made up of more than 50 percent water, it’s needed for all basic bodily functions, so don’t take it for granted.

In the United States and many other countries, the public water supply is monitored and maintained by government agencies. Safety standards are put in place to regulate its cleanliness. Most of the time you don’t have to worry that you’re drinking contaminated water that will make you sick. But a closer look at tap water shows that while you’re told it’s safe for drinking, it’s not free of all contaminants.

Be an informed consumer and know what’s in your drinking water and take steps, if necessary, to fend off any potential liquid dangers.

Tap Water

Water utility companies get their water from nearby lakes, springs, and rivers. It’s possible that bacteria and parasites end up in the water supply from animal or human fecal matter. But the potential contaminants don’t end there. Chemicals from industrial plants, nitrates from agricultural fertilizers, or chemicals from crop dusting may make their way to your water. Lead or other harmful minerals that naturally occur in the environment or that are improperly disposed may also be in your water. Sometimes contamination occurs inside your own home because of old pipes or breaks in the water line. Even pipes advertised as “lead-free” contain some amount of lead.

Additionally, while government agencies monitor levels of many contaminants to ensure water’s safety, some contaminants aren’t monitored or regulated. People with compromised immune systems or young children are most at risk from their harmful effects.

Bottled Water

More and more people get their drinking water from bottles. However, you shouldn’t assume that bottled water is safer than tap water. Because there’s usually not a guarantee your bottled water is any safer than tap water. While bottled water is regulated like a food and manufacturers quit using plastic bottles made with BPA, there are still allowable levels of chemical, microbial, and radiological contaminants.

Well Water

Millions of people get their drinking water from a private well. Not regulated by the government, the safety of well water depends on its location, regular maintenance, the quality of its water supply, and nearby human activity. To ensure it provides safe and fresh water for years to come, have your well water tested regularly.

Potential Dangers

The danger of contaminated water depends on the type of contaminant. Pathogens may cause disease or gastrointestinal illness and nitrates may hinder the body’s ability to transport oxygen. Lead can cause neurological problems, behavioral issues, or physical development delays in kids or kidney problems in adults. Certain chemicals are linked to cancer, reproductive problems, or kidney failure. In short, contaminated water can cause a host of problems, so if you’re experiencing odd symptoms, it may be worth your while to test your water supply.

Safe Water

A water filter is the best way to protect your family from harmful contaminants. There are numerous types of filters to choose from, each offering protection from different types of contaminants. There’s no one filter that will eliminate all contaminants so in order to know what kind of filter to use, first have your water tested at a certified laboratory.

And contrary to popular belief, boiling water will not make it safer to drink. It may kill germs, but not other harmful chemicals. In fact, since the amount of water lessens as it boils, the contaminants become more concentrated.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

© 2009-2010 Keuilian Inc. 
Powered by FitPro Magazine™Terms of Service | Legal Disclaimer
The content and information on this site is not intended to diagnose, cure, treat or prevent disease.
Please consult your physician prior to starting any exercise or diet program.

You need to eat a healthy breakfast every day. Here’s why

You need to eat a healthy breakfast every day. Here’s why

Maybe you just don’t feel hungry when you first wake up, you’re trying to cut back on calories, or mornings are already too hectic to take the time to fix something to eat. Whatever your excuse for skipping breakfast, you’re missing out on a lot of valuable health benefits.

Numerous studies prove and experts agree that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Here are a few reasons why.

Weight Control

Anyone trying to lose weight by skipping breakfast is making a big mistake. Think about this: people who eat breakfast weigh less than those who don’t. Why is this? Eating breakfast kicks your metabolism into gear for the rest of the day. Skimping on calories tells your body to hold tight to whatever calories it does get instead of burning them. This spells sabotage for your diet.
Not eating breakfast also makes you hungrier the rest of the day. When lunch finally rolls around, you stuff your face. For snacks, you don’t think about good health. You grab whatever’s most convenient.

In other words, a healthy breakfast sets the tone for your diet the rest of the day. Someone who eats a healthy breakfast is more likely to make healthy food choices for snacks, lunch, and dinner.

Energy

Wonder why you feel dragged out and sluggish all morning? Chances are it’s because you didn’t fuel up with breakfast. Going more than 12 hours without food means your muscles begin to be depleted of glycogen for energy. Without energy, you’re at risk for fatigue, depression, weight gain, and a lower quality of life.

Nutrition

Your body requires a certain amount of calories, vitamins, minerals, fiber, fat, carbohydrates, and protein to function. It’s a lot easier to get all the required nutrients when they’re divided between three meals and a couple snacks. Without breakfast, you’re putting a lot of pressure on the other meals you eat and putting yourself at risk for deficiencies of fiber, calcium, and other valuable vitamins and minerals.

Memory

One reason why breakfast is so important is the effect it has on your ability to focus, problem-solve, and retain information. Kids who eat breakfast perform better on tests and schoolwork. Adults are more productive and alert throughout the day. Your mind needs nutrients to function. When your stomach’s growling it’s hard to concentrate, you feel weak, and you’re irritable. This could lead to poor performance even put you in harm’s way.

Health Risks

Studies show a clear connection between eating breakfast and your health. People who skip breakfast are at a higher risk for developing high cholesterol, heart disease, high blood pressure, insulin resistance, high blood sugar, and type 2 diabetes. Eat early every day and have more days to enjoy.

What to Eat?

Now that you’re convinced you need to eat breakfast, what should you eat? To get the greatest benefit out of breakfast you need to focus on two things: fiber and protein. These nutrients provide long-lasting energy and fullness all morning long.

Examples of fiber-rich foods to eat at breakfast include oatmeal, whole-grain cereals, fruit, or toast made with whole grains. To get protein first thing in the morning, eat a breakfast that includes items like milk, Greek yogurt, peanut butter, eggs, a protein bar, or lean breakfast meats.

Breakfast doesn’t have to take long to prepare and you don’t have to sit down at the table to fill up. It only takes a couple minutes to make a bowl of oatmeal, a smoothie with frozen fruit and yogurt, or some scrambled eggs. Keep a stash of nutritious protein bars, hard-boiled eggs, fruit, or yogurt cups on hand for when you’re in a rush. But whatever you do, don’t fast from breakfast!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

© 2009-2010 Keuilian Inc. 
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The content and information on this site is not intended to diagnose, cure, treat or prevent disease.
Please consult your physician prior to starting any exercise or diet program.

2018 Goal Setting Workshop in Review

Perhaps you were unable to attend the BCS Fitness Goal Setting Workshop in early January. Brad has given you the best of his content, summed up in this podcast. Taking the time to listen and apply these strategies, is sure to set you on the path to setting and accomplishing your goals this year! Email Brad@bcsfitness.com for more notes and supplemental worksheets.

The pros and cons of various types of milk

The pros and cons of various types of milk

The dairy section of your grocery store is stocked with all kinds of milks to choose from. There’s not only cow’s milk that comes as whole, skim, enriched with vitamin D, organic, pasteurized, unpasteurized, lactose-free, or flavored, but there’s goat’s milk and milk made from soybeans, rice, coconuts, hazelnuts, hemp seeds, almonds, oats, and cashews. Milk is a wonderful source of calcium, protein, and other valuable nutrients, making it a staple in most family’s refrigerators.

Whatever type of milk you choose to drink is likely based on your taste preferences, health needs, and age. The following information can help narrow down your selection.

Cow

These days, fewer people are choosing cow’s milk for their families. Many people aren’t able to digest the lactose found in it and others argue that cow’s milk contains too much protein, increases mucous production, leads to inflammation, contains hormones and antibiotics, and actually pulls calcium out of the bones. Do your research and decide for yourself.

For those who still drink cow’s milk and are looking for a creamy taste with fewer calories, skim or low-fat is the best option. Whole milk is recommended for young kids due to its high fat content and lactose-free milks are available for those who can’t digest milk sugar. Whichever kind you choose, be sure it’s pasteurized to avoid harmful bacteria.

Almond

When enriched with calcium, vitamins, and minerals, almond milk can be a healthy, low-calorie, low-carb option. With a creamy texture and nutty flavor, almond milk is lactose-free but is relatively low in protein. Look for the kind without added sugar.

Soy

Like cow’s milk, soy milk comes with some controversy. It’s full of healthy nutrients and high-quality protein, is lactose-free, and a popular choice for vegans and vegetarians, but it’s made of soy. Many people are wary of soy products since they contain compounds that mimic the female hormone estrogen. Some studies reveal a connection between soy and male infertility and a change in thyroid function. When choosing soy milk, as with other milk options, watch out for added sugars.

Coconut

Folks scared off from dairy and soy may turn to coconut milk. Coconut milk’s rich, creamy texture and varied health benefits are appealing, but beware of its high saturated fat content and lack of calcium and protein. In small amounts, coconut milk is a treat, but it’s not recommended to be a staple in your refrigerator.

Rice

Another non-dairy alternative to meet your hankering for milk is rice milk. Made from whole-grain rice germ, rice milk is a great hypoallergenic option, contains balanced nutrition, is high in antioxidants, and is low in fat and cholesterol. However, rice milk is also low in protein and low in calcium unless it’s enriched. Since it’s derived from rice, rice milk is high in starch and carbohydrates. Because of this, rice milk is not a safe option for those living with diabetes.

Cashew

It’s not as healthy as eating a few cashews, but cashew milk is growing in popularity among vegans and people who are lactose intolerant. Cashew milk is low in calories and free of saturated fat and cholesterol but can be high in added sugars and salt. Unlike the actual nut, cashew milk is low in protein, but if you like the creamy, nutty flavor and can make up for the lack of protein another way, then cashew milk may be your new favorite choice.

Hemp

Made from soaking and grinding hemp seed, hemp milk is another possible dairy-free alternative. It’s high in calcium, vitamins, and minerals, and low in saturated fat. Unfortunately, it’s relatively low in protein. Vanilla and chocolate hemp milk are often sweetened with added sugars that drive up its calorie count, so be careful if you go the hemp route.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The content and information on this site is not intended to diagnose, cure, treat or prevent disease.
Please consult your physician prior to starting any exercise or diet program.

Want to be more productive? Try these tricks.

Want to be more productive? Try these tricks.

So much to do, so little time. Do you wonder why you struggle each day to accomplish your to-do list? You would think 16 hours of wake-time would be enough get your work done, but at the end of the day you don’t know where all the time went. If you’re like many people it’s because when you could be marking off your to-do list, you’re wasting your time on unimportant things.

Keep reading to learn a few ways you can quit wasting so much time and complete those tasks that need to get done.

Track Your Time

Everyone wastes time differently. What may be a distraction for you might not tempt someone else. To effectively quit wasting time, you’ve got to know how you spend your time. Use a spreadsheet that lists each hour of the day. At the top of each hour, think back over the previous 60 minutes. How much time did you waste and what were you doing? After two days you’ll get an idea of how much time you spend on inconsequential things and what those distractions are.

Make a Plan

Start each day with a plan in mind and write down a to-do list. Prioritize each item and then make a schedule by setting time-estimations for task. As you go through your day and make decisions about how to spend your time, make sure it aligns with your plan. Allow extra time in your schedule so you can be flexible when interruptions happen.

Put Away Your Phone

These days phones aren’t just used to make phone calls. The Internet, social media, and countless apps call your name all day long. You need a break from work, you’re waiting in line, or you’re just bored, so what do you do? Check your phone. Unfortunately, what could take 10 seconds ends up taking half an hour. And even if you’re off the phone fast, you just derailed your train of thought, making it more difficult finish the task you were working to complete. The problem with phones is they’re always with you. When you’ve got an important task to do, set your phone aside until your job is done. Texts, calls, and emails can wait.

Take a Break from Social Media

One of the biggest time wasters is social media. You may like how it allows you to stay in touch with old friends or snoop into other people’s lives, but you’re likely spending way too much time scrolling through post after post of meaningless information. Think of how much more you could get done in your own life if you weren’t so concerned about everyone else’s life or how many “likes” you got on your recent post. Ask a trusted friend to change your password or download an app that sets timers or restrictions on social media sites.

Turn off the Television

Many families’ televisions are on while they get ready in the morning, as they make and eat dinner, and while they relax all evening before bed. Think of all the books you could read or books you could write, all the chores you could get done, or all the calories you could burn in that amount of time. Zoning out with a television show can help with productivity if reserved for a short amount of relaxation time, but don’t let it run your life.

Quit Procrastinating

When there’s a task on your to-do list that you’re dreading, it’s easy to find plenty of other things you’d rather do. Unfortunately, taking a nap, watching a movie, or daydreaming won’t help get your job done. Instead of waiting until the last minute to write that proposal or fix the leaky faucet, jump in and get it done. You’ll feel better once you start and it likely won’t be as bad as you thought.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

© 2009-2010 Keuilian Inc. 
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The content and information on this site is not intended to diagnose, cure, treat or prevent disease.
Please consult your physician prior to starting any exercise or diet program.

What happens when you lose five percent of your weight?

What happens when you lose five percent of your weight?

 

You know obesity comes with great health risks, but are you willing to do the work it takes to lose weight? Even though you may be 25, 50, or 100 pounds overweight, you may be encouraged to know that losing just a small amount of weight provides health benefits that make the effort worth it.

Let’s start with five percent weight loss. For a 200-pound person, that would be 10 pounds, for someone who weighs 300 pounds that’s 15 pounds. Sound like something you can do? It is.

Five percent may be a small fraction of what you need to lose, but it could be the motivation you need to get started. Here are a few of the perks that an overweight person can enjoy when he or she sheds the first five percent of their excess weight.

Lowers Heart Risks

Anyone with high cholesterol, triglycerides, or blood pressure should know the huge effect a small amount of weight loss can have on lowering the risk of heart disease. Numerous studies show losing just 5 to 10 percent of body weight raises levels of your HDL “good” cholesterol (the kind of cholesterol that helps remove LDL “bad” cholesterol from your blood), lowers your triglycerides (blood fat that puts you at risk for heart attack and stroke), and reduces your blood pressure by five points.

Prevents Type 2 Diabetes

A little weight loss also goes a long way in helping to ward off type 2 diabetes. In fact, a meager five percent weight loss can have the same effect of lowering blood sugar levels as some medications. For those with prediabetes, this reduction may completely prevent or delay the risk of developing diabetes. A diabetic who loses weight may not need as much medication, is better able to control blood sugar levels, and will lessen the likelihood of further health complications of the disease.

Reduces Chances of Cancer

Weight loss decreases the amount of inflammation in the body and lowers levels of hormones like levels insulin, estrogen, and androgen. This is gravely important, since high inflammation and an imbalance of hormones put you at an increased risk of cancers such as colon, breast, ovarian, kidney, cervix, and prostate.

Improves Joint Health

Wonder why your knees, ankles, and hips give you so much trouble? Excess weight places a lot of pressure on your joints. Over time, this pressure weakens and thins your joints. The inflammation in your body from being overweight also damages joint tissue and increases your likelihood of arthritis. Lose a few pounds and you’ll definitely feel an improvement in your joints.

Helps You Sleep

Studies show that overweight people don’t get as much restful sleep as those who maintain a healthy weight. One reason for this is because you’re four times as likely to have sleep apnea if you’re obese. Sleep apnea is a condition where the excess tissue in the back of your throat relaxes when you sleep, causing you to stop breathing repeatedly throughout the night. Lose a few pounds and your apnea may drastically improve. With more restful sleep, you’ll have more energy and be less irritable the next day.

Boosts Mood

Maybe it’s poor self-image, a lack of energy, or feeling depressed about your weight, but for whatever reason, you’re in a bad mood all the time. Weight loss combined with a regular exercise routine is known to put you in a better mood. Exercise releases feel-good hormones called endorphins, weight loss increases your self-confidence, and the health improvements you see are all ways to feel more positive about life in general.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

© 2009-2010 Keuilian Inc. 
Powered by FitPro Magazine™Terms of Service | Legal Disclaimer
The content and information on this site is not intended to diagnose, cure, treat or prevent disease.
Please consult your physician prior to starting any exercise or diet program.