What To Expect After Calling 911 For Chest Pain

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This article is courtesy of PRWeb and Harvard Health Publications, please share your comments below…..

didyouknow?If a person calls 911 with a suspected heart attack, the first test is an electrocardiogram. The following steps typically include an evaluation by a doctor and a blood test to look for signs of heart muscle damage.

Every 43 seconds, someone in the United States has a heart attack. Getting to the hospital quickly is just one reason why people should call 911 if they have chest pain or other heart attack symptoms, according to the June 2016 Harvard Heart Letter.

“If you’re having a heart attack, there are two reasons why you want to be in an ambulance,” says Dr. Joshua Kosowsky, assistant professor of emergency medicine at Harvard Medical School. One is that in the unlikely event of cardiac arrest, the ambulance has the equipment and trained personnel to restart a person’s heart. Cardiac arrest, which results from a malfunction of the nerves that stops the heart’s pumping ability, is fatal without prompt treatment. However, most heart attacks do not cause cardiac arrest, Dr. Kosowsky stresses. “It’s rare, but it’s certainly not a risk you want to take while you’re driving or riding in a car.”

The other reason to travel via ambulance is that in many places in the United States, if a person calls 911 complaining of chest pain, the dispatcher will send paramedics who are trained to perform an electrocardiogram (ECG). This simple, painless test records the heart’s electrical activity through 12 small electrodes placed on the chest, arms, and legs. A six-second recording can then be transmitted to the receiving emergency department, which can help speed up the treatment once the person arrives at the hospital.

At the hospital, a doctor interprets the ECG, which will reveal whether the person is having a major heart attack, in which an artery feeding the heart is blocked and choking off the blood supply to part of the heart’s muscle. This usually creates a distinct signature on the ECG and warrants quick treatment to open the blocked artery.

A person with a suspected heart attack will also get a blood test to measure troponin, a protein that rises in response to heart muscle damage. Other possible tests include a chest x-ray to look for alternative causes of chest discomfort, such as pneumonia or heart failure.

Read the full-length article: “When chest pain strikes: What to expect at the emergency room”

Also in the June 2016 issue of the Harvard Heart Letter:

* Heart-healthy supper suggestions

* Managing the risk of stroke from atrial fibrillation

* How volunteering may help your heart

The Harvard Heart Letter is available from Harvard Health Publications, the publishing division of Harvard Medical School, for $20 per year. Subscribe at http://www.health.harvard.edu/heart or by calling 877-649-9457 (toll-free).

Life After Physical Therapy, Avoiding Re-Injury

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This article is courtesy of PRWeb, please share your comments below…..

joggerExpert advice and tips from Post-Rehab Conditioning Specialist Ashley Jacob with Armonk Physical Therapy and Sports Training on getting back into the game—and avoiding re-injury.

In many cases, a sports-related injury—a twisted ankle or knee, a wrenched shoulder—means a trip to the doctor’s office (if not the ER), followed by several weeks of physical therapy. “After PT, most people figure they’re good to go—so they go,” says Ashley Jacob, a Certified Personal Trainer, Medical Exercise Specialist and Post-Rehab Conditioning Specialist at Armonk Physical Therapy and Sports Training. That typically means going right back to the pre-injury routine at the gym or the running track, with only a vague idea of how to regain lost fitness and avoid another injury in the future.

Unfortunately, this strategy might also be sending the patient right back to the doctor (and physical therapist), Jacob says, because it’s missing two critical elements: a genuine understanding of how to further repair—and avoid repeating—the injury and the physical conditioning necessary to completely heal the damage and restore function in the injured area. But working with a qualified post-rehab personal trainer means working out (and returning to pre-injury fitness levels) with the assistance and oversight of an exercise and fitness professional.

A targeted approach

For any patient, regardless of age or athletic prowess, returning from an injury is a lengthy process, Jacob says. Even the best medical treatment and PT regimen usually leaves the patient with residual functional deficits that require targeted strength and conditioning work, she explains. “Effective rehabilitation really needs a graduated exercise program that’s specifically designed to return the injured body part to its normal and healthy function,” she says. “And that’s something that needs to continue long after the doctor’s appointments and PT sessions are over.”

Effective rehabilitation needs a graduated exercise program that’s specifically designed to return the injured body part to its normal and healthy function.

A qualified personal trainer can design a post-rehab exercise program that closely follows the physician’s or physical therapist’s advice, she explains. (No matter how closely a patient listens to the doctor or therapist, a non-medical person is bound to miss or misunderstand or simply forget something, she says.) But equally important, she says, certified post-rehab specialists are also trained to apply the doctor’s (or physical therapist’s) directives to the individual client, taking into account the many variables—age, athletic conditioning, lifestyle, etc.—that make each client unique.

“Certified post-rehab specialists are specifically trained to work with clients who have injuries or other conditions that require special consideration,” she says. For example, they can help clients to “train around” an injury, by substituting activities that won’t put undue strain on damaged tissues.

Specifically, today’s post-rehab specialists focus on a few things, Jacob says:

* Mobility—restoring flexibility and range of motion—as well as strengthening and conditioning injured muscles, while keeping a close eye on the client’s pain levels. This address the loss of muscle mass and strength that typically accompany sports-related injuries, Jacob says.

* Alignment and form. Qualified post-rehab specialists are trained to evaluate a client’s movement patterns with an eye toward proper form and alignment.

* Muscle recruitment. Post-rehab trainers also work with re-educating muscles, which can be out of balance after an injury, thus ensuring correct muscle recruitment and preventing imbalances.

* Muscle feedback. Trainers also work on what’s known as proprioception—the messages sent to the brain from the injured tissues, which is another common post-injury problem that can lead to repeat injuries—by incorporating exercises that build stability and balance.

* Motivation. Like other personal trainers, post-rehab specialists coach clients in fitness as well as lifestyle, thus helping them maintain and improve their physical fitness as well as their mental focus.

– Ashley Jacob is a certified personal trainer with the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America, a Certified Medical Exercise Specialist and Certified Post-Rehab Conditioning Specialist with the American Academy of Health, Fitness, and Rehab Professionals, and Certified to Provide Dietary Guidance for her clients with the Cooper Institute. Armonk Physical Therapy and Sports Training provides personalized, integrative, and skilled one-on-one physical therapy services. http://www.armonkptst.com

Ways To Look After Your Smile

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By Steve Barker

malesmileOur teeth are obviously an important part of our bodies, so looking after them is a top concern for most. There are many benefits to a bright smile, aside from just appearance. With the job market more competitive than ever, having good first impressions can be the difference between getting a job and losing it, or between securing a client and losing one. A well looked after set of teeth can help you give the best possible first impression.

A friendly smile is also a benefit if you are looking for love – it is often said that potential partners make a judgment of you within the first 15 seconds of you meeting! We’re not so sure how true that is, but there is probably some merit in the broader point, if you’re looking for love, care for your teeth first! Not least of all, having a healthy mouth can give you a boost of personal confidence by making you feel better about yourself. If you are wondering what you can do to improve your dental health, you’ve come to the right place!

Dental Treatments that Can Enhance Smiles

No matter what your age, you can always do something to improve the health of your smile. Below we look at some of the most common treatments, their benefits, and general information.

● Cosmetic Procedures – These come in a wide variety of options and can be both restorative and purely cosmetic (i.e. there are no underlying problems that need fixing). Treatments like bonding are an attractive solution for those that do not like the gap between their teeth. Cosmetic procedures aren’t only for fixing appearance imperfections, but also to repair the damage done by dental conditions such as gingivitis.

● Teeth whitening – A very popular procedure that can give you a Hollywood smile! One of the most common types of cosmetic dentistry, this is a quick method that gives tremendous results at a cost effective price point. Whitening is an excellent choice if you’re preparing for an interview or trying to impress that special someone!

● Restorative care – Carried out when there has been a severe dental condition like tooth loss. This type of treatment is more common among senior citizens but applies to people of all ages. Typical treatments include dental implants and dentures.

Protect your Smile with Insurance

Dental insurance can save you a lot of money in the case of emergency care for you or your family. At the end of the day, the decision is a financial one which you are best placed to make, but we can advise on some of the pros and cons. One of the biggest advantages is the reduction in cost if you do require emergency dental treatment. An often overlooked factor is that having a dental plan can reduce your financial worries about going to see your dentist, and this means that you get the right advice and care as soon as you develop a problem, rather than putting off a visit to the dentist’s because you are concerned about the cost.

In the long term, putting off any healthcare complaint can seriously impact your long term health outcome and also cost more money than it would have done to get the problem sorted early on. The drawbacks to having dental insurance is that you may never need it but always have to pay for it. Naturally, this is obviously how any insurance works and can be a risky strategy to go without some kind of backup plan. Also, it is essential that you understand the terms of your insurance paying particular attention to what conditions/treatment it covers and any additional charges you may incur. It could be that some treatments aren’t more expensive than on a plan, but this all depends on the nature of the plan you take out. It is because of this reason that we advise you to have a good read and speak to someone with experience to help you make the decision for yourself.

Enjoy Your Smile!

The most important point of this is article is easily summarized: enjoy your smile and maintain a healthy mouth! Don’t suffer with teeth that you aren’t happy with, because life is too short. There are many dental companies out there, exceptionally experienced with hundreds of satisfied customers, such as VSP Dental. Whatever dental treatment you choose, always remember that if you look after your health, it will take care of you!

Having Plastic Surgery Done? Tips To Keep In Mind Before And After The Procedure

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By Dr. Michael J. Brown, MD

didyouknow?Getting a plastic surgery procedure done is an exciting, yet nerve-wracking time. You are excited for the changes about to take place, but may be nervous about the surgery. However, it is important that you take the time to keep some tips in mind. These tips will help the procedure and recovery go more smoothly. Here are some tips to keep in mind when you are having plastic surgery.

Follow All Pre-Op and Post-Op Instructions From Your Plastic Surgeon

When you are preparing for, or have just undergone a plastic surgery procedure, the most important tip to keep in mind is to follow all instructions from the doctor who is or has performed your surgery. You will be given a pre-op and post-op instruction sheet. These sheets will tell you what you should and should not do following the surgery. The pre-op sheet may advise you to stop eating or drinking at a certain time prior to your operation and ask you to remove all jewelry prior to surgery. The post-op instructions may explain what medications to take, what foods to eat, and how to care for any wounds after the surgery. Failing to follow these instructions can jeopardize your heath both during and after the procedure.

Get Your Affairs in Order

After undergoing a surgical procedure, you are going to want time to rest and recover. You are not going to want to have to run around and pay bills or go grocery shopping. As such, you should get all of your affairs in order prior to the surgical procedure. If possible, pay all your bills early so you don’t have to worry about them immediately following the surgery. Take the time to stock your pantry with non-perishable food, so you will have plenty to eat. Or arrange for a grocery service to deliver groceries to your home. And since you may feel like lying around for a few days, pick up a book, magazines or movies so you have something to do without becoming bored. This will help you get the rest you need without feeling like you have other things that need to be done.

Stay Hydrated Following Your Surgery

waterbottleAnother important tip to keep in mind as you recover from plastic surgery is to stay hydrated. After surgery, you may not feel like eating or drinking much, but once you get the all clear to consume liquids, you should. Make sure you drink plenty of water. This helps blood flow through your body and assists in the recovery process. It also keeps you from becoming dehydrated, which can lead to headaches and nausea.

Massage Your Scars

When the dressing and bandages come off of your body, you may want to begin to rub vitamin E oil or other scar reducing products, into your surgical scar. Massage helps to increase the flow of blood to this area of the body, while vitamin E, or similar products, help to moisturize the skin. Both of these items together can minimize the darkened color of the scar and it’s length. No one wants an obvious scar in the area they had plastic surgery, so doing this can help decrease your chances of having an unsightly scar.

Undergoing plastic surgery can be a life-changing decision. You get to improve something about your appearance that you dislike and instead, get something you have always dreamed about. This may be larger breasts, a smaller nose, or a curvier figure. However, plastic surgery can take a toll on your body. Luckily, there are certain things you can do before and after surgery to make things easier on yourself. Following these tips will help make the procedure go more smoothly and assist in your recovery.

Author: Dr. Michael J. Brown, MD, Founder and Medical Director of the Loudoun Center for Plastic Surgery and Dermatology, Dr. Brown has paid particular attention to all facets for safety and personal experience.

Contact details:

mjbrown1@hotmail.com

https://www.linkedin.com/in/drmichaeljbrown

https://plus.google.com/108238646977899871571/about

https://www.facebook.com/theloudouncenter/

Study Shows That Teens Lose Sleep After Change To Daylight Saving Time

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This article is courtesy of PRWeb and the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, please share your comments below…..

SleepingWomanA new study shows that high school students lose sleep on school nights following the change to daylight saving time that occurs in March. The loss of sleep during the school week was associated with a decline in vigilance and cognitive function, which raises safety concerns for teen drivers.

Results show that the average objectively measured sleep duration on the weeknights after the spring time change declined to 7 hours, 19 minutes, which reflects a mean loss of 32 minutes per night compared with the school week prior to the implementation of daylight saving time. Average cumulative sleep loss on weeknights following the time change was 2 hours, 42 minutes. During school days after the time change, students also displayed increased sleepiness and a decline in psychomotor vigilance, including longer reaction times and increased lapses of attention.

“For many years now, sleep researchers have been concerned about sleep deprivation in adolescents,” said principal investigator Dr. Ana Krieger, medical director of the Weill Cornell Center for Sleep Medicine at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital and associate professor of clinical medicine, of medicine in clinical neurology, and of clinical genetic medicine at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City. “This study unveils a potential additional factor that may further restrict their sleep in the early spring.”

Study results are published in the August issue of the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine.

According to the authors, this is the first study to quantify the detrimental effects of daylight saving time implementation using objective measurements of sleep duration and vigilance in students attending high school.

The study group comprised 35 high school students with a mean age of 16.5 years. Nightly sleep duration was measured at home by actigraphy during the weeks prior to and after the change to daylight saving time. Participants also completed a sleep diary to report subjective sleep measures. Measurements of daytime sleepiness and vigilance were collected using the Karolinska Sleepiness Scale (KSS) and the Psychomotor Vigilance Test (PVT).

The American Academy of Sleep Medicine recommends that adolescents get a little more than nine hours of nightly sleep for optimal health and daytime alertness during the critical transition from childhood to adulthood.

“Getting adequate sleep is key for many facets of an adolescent’s development,” said Dr. Nathaniel F. Watson, president of the AASM. “This study raises significant concern about the consequences of impeding their already hectic sleep schedules with Daylight Saving Time every spring.”

To request a copy of the study, “Adverse Effects of Daylight Saving Time on Adolescents’
Sleep and Vigilance,” or to arrange an interview with the study author or an AASM spokesperson, please contact Communications Coordinator Lynn Celmer at 630-737-9700, ext. 9364, or lcelmer(at)aasmnet(dot)org.

The monthly, peer-reviewed Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine is the official publication of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, a professional membership society that improves sleep health and promotes high quality patient centered care through advocacy, education, strategic research, and practice standards (http://www.aasmnet.org). The AASM encourages patients to talk to their doctor about sleep problems or visit http://www.sleepeducation.org for a searchable directory of AASM-accredited sleep centers.

Managing Pain The First Few Days After Braces

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By Dr. Nima Hajibaik

dentistWhat are the best methods of managing pain and discomfort from the application of new braces?

The application of braces can sometimes cause minor sensitivity, and discomfort for your teeth, and irritation to the lips and tongue for the first several days, but there are ways to ease into the transition.

You have scheduled your appointment and discussed the different types of braces available, and now you are ready to have them placed. Is there anything you can do to prepare beforehand? Yes, there is. Take some time to be prepared for your orthodontic braces by purchasing a few items you will need for the first few days such as:

• Salt

• Over-the-counter-pain medications like Tylenol or Ibuprofen

• Dental wax (This is also provided by your orthodontist.)

• Ice pack

• Soft foods like soup, mashed potatoes, yogurt, ice cream, etc.

• Smoothies or protein drinks

• Purchase oral hygiene implements such as toothbrush, floss, etc., as recommended by your orthodontist

Braces, day one: Take the recommended age-appropriate dose of an over-the-counter pain meds such as Tylenol or Ibuprofen 30 minutes before your visit to the orthodontist to have your braces applied. This can help to lessen any discomfort you may experience during and after you get your braces. This applies to children or to those who are having adult braces applied.

Once you get home, you can resume normal activity but you will want to stick to a soft food regime over the course of the next few days until you become adjusted to the new appliance. Taking sips of ice-cold water or eating frozen popsicles or ice cream can help to ease the discomfort. If you experience any sores on your tongue or lips, gargle with a mild salt water rinse to help heal the irritated areas.

Try to avoid citrus fruits or drinks at this time as they can cause further discomfort. Do not attempt to remove any bands or wires from your braces if they give you trouble; apply dental wax to the area to help alleviate any irritation.

After a week or so: you will become used to your new braces and they should not bother you as much. Continue to rinse with mild salt water and use your dental wax as needed. All of these tips can apply to the application of all types of dental braces. It is always a good idea to sit down and talk with a professional, your orthodontist has years of experience in this field, and will help you to make this transition as easy and painless as possible.

Learn More

Dr. Nima Hajibaik works at Newpark Orthodontics, located in Alpharetta, Ga. To learn more about Dr. Nima Hajibaik or Newpark Orthodontics visit newparkortho.com or call (678) 389-9400.

Hot August Nights And Day After Hangovers

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By Kac Young PhD, N.D., DCH

youngdrinkThe party was fun, the people were festive, you danced the night away and you wake up the next morning feeling like you’ve been run over by a herd of peptic camels. Other than wanting your mother to soothe your brow and coo, “There, there honey,” you can do something to restore your body’s healthy status quo.

To get back on track you’ll want to:

1) Drink Orange Juice. Go for the Vitamin C: Orange and grapefruit juices have the highest level of one of the most powerful antioxidants, vitamin C. The vitamin works to neutralize free radicals to help fight cell and tissue damage that could lead to diseases. Potassium: citrus juices have the highest level of potassium which plays an important role in cardiovascular health. Folate: Orange juice contains the highest amount of folate. Citrus fruit juices are higher in vitamin A, thiamin, and phosphorous than other juices in the analysis.

2) Eat Some Fruit. Blackberries, kiwi, grapes and oranges have the highest levels of antioxidants These antioxidants and other free radical scavengers such as flavonoids, carotenoids, organic acids (cinnamic and gallic) and vitamin E . These compounds neutralize free radicals in the body and bring oxygen into the blood stream.

3) 1 Tablespoon of Apple Cider Vinegar can help restore the acid balance in your body caused by excess drink and food. Apple cider vinegar creates an overall detoxification of the body. Research shows that it can help stimulate cardiovascular circulation and help detoxify the liver. It can also help in breaking up mucous throughout the body and cleansing the lymph nodes.

Believe it or not, a glass of red wine can rebalance your body and put your blood sugar back into balance after a night of partying.

4) 6 oz Red Wine – believe it or not, a glass of red wine can rebalance your body and put your blood sugar back into balance after a night of partying. “There’s good evidence emerging that the chief cause of hangover is acute withdrawal from alcohol,” says Mack Mitchell, M.D., vice president of the Alcoholic Beverage Medical Research Foundation in Baltimore, and assistant professor of medicine at Johns Hopkins University. So, a small glass of red wine can assuage hangover symptoms and gradually wean the body off alcohol and back into balance.

5) Spice It Up. Eat something very spicy.. Look for foods heavily seasoned with rosemary, oregano, cinnamon, turmeric, black pepper, cloves, garlic or paprika. Spices will get your circulation going and wake up your sludgy systems. Try this version of Drunken Noodles as your antidote for your revelry:

1/2 pound Asian wheat or egg noodles

8 ounces skinless, boneless chicken breast, thinly sliced (about 1 cup)

4 tablespoons fish sauce

3 tablespoons canola oil or rice bran oil

2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice

2 tablespoons finely minced garlic

1 teaspoon to 1 tablespoon chili garlic sauce, the spicier the better for you!

1 small onion, cut into 1/2-inch chunks

1 can sliced water chestnuts

1 small green pepper, seeded and sliced

3 tablespoons light brown sugar

1 medium carrot, thinly sliced on the diagonal

2 teaspoons cornstarch

3 ounces snow peas, ends snapped, strung, and large ones cut in half on the diagonal

2 teaspoons Chinese rice wine or dry sherry

1 cup Thai basil or sweet basil whole leaves, packed

recipeskacyoungCook the noodles according to package directions- usually under 4 minutes. Drain. Sauté chicken in 1 tablespoon of oil. Set aside. In a small bowl combine fish sauce, lime juice, brown sugar, garlic. In a small cup combine the cornstarch and rice wine. Stir and set aside. Add 2 tablespoons of oil to wok or large skillet. Add carrots, onions and cook for 2-3 minutes. Add garlic, snow peas and green pepper and cook for another minute. Add final tablespoon of oil then combine noodles, chicken, water chestnuts and sauces in wok or large skillet. Lift noodles gently to combine all ingredients. Serve and eat immediately.

– Kac Young, a former television director and producer, has earned a PhD in Natural Health and is a Doctor of both Clinical Hypnotherapy and Naturopathy. She is the author of 10 books. Heart Easy is a system of nutritionally sound, delicious meals that promote heart health, long life and taste great. In the Heart Easy cook book sound nutritional advice is followed by family favorites that have been turned into heart healthy meals anyone can make and everyone will love. Learn more: http://www.HeartEasy.com

After Childhood Cancer

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By Beth Kurt, MD

kidsjumpingLess than 20 percent of children survived cancer in the 1960’s. Fortunately, the five-year survival rate for childhood cancer is now approaching 80 percent. (1)

As a consequence of these improved survival rates, more teenagers and young adults who have undergone cancer therapy will go on to face special challenges when transitioning from active cancer treatment to resuming a normal life. Many survivors of childhood cancer experience late occurring health complications related to their cancer or its treatment; thus, regular medical follow-up is critical to maintain good health.

Recent studies have found that significant numbers of childhood cancer survivors do not receive the follow-up care needed. (2) The reasons may include financial difficulties, lack of insurance or a desire to move past a cancer diagnosis. To make matters more difficult, most primary care providers have cared for only a handful of childhood cancer patients and are not well-equipped to refer families to cancer centers to provide the best follow-up care. (3)

At our After Care and Transition (ACT) Program clinic visits, we provide a summary letter to the patient and their primary care physician, which details information about the cancer diagnosis, treatment and health problems that may occur as a result. We also provide resources for further reading and ways to stay healthy.

Among the issues that cancer survivors need to discuss and learn about at their follow-up doctor visits are:

• Signs and symptoms that should prompt a visit to their doctor.

• Risk for infertility and premature menopause.

• Risk for long-term heart toxicity and ways to improve or maintain heart health.

• Resources for mental health counseling.

• College scholarship opportunities.

• Other preventative health measures: use of sunscreen/risk for skin cancer, hearing protection etc.

One particular challenge stems from normal tensions between adolescent desires for autonomy and privacy, and strong parental desires to protect and care for their child both during and long after a life-threatening illness.

doctorDuring appointments with our patients, we do our best to educate adolescents and young adults about the importance of learning their own medical histories and speaking up when they have a concern about how they are feeling. This can be difficult, as adolescents may be inclined to deny symptoms like pain, depression or certain worries in front of their parents, and “neglect” to share information unless the right questions are asked. Well-meaning parents, on the other hand, are so used to being the primary historian and making decisions for their child, that it’s a learning process for them, too.

We encourage patients and their physicians to contact us if they have questions about how a health concern may relate to their cancer history. All of us at the ACT clinic keep an open-door policy, even after patients have officially “graduated” from the practice.

References:

1) National Cancer Institute

2) Oeffinger KC, Mertens AC, Hudson MM, Gurney JG, Casillas J, Chen H, et al. Health care of young adult survivors of childhood cancer: a report from the Childhood Cancer Survivor Study. Ann Fam Med 2004;2:61-70.

3) Nathan PC, Daugherty CK, Wroblewski KE, Kigin ML, Stewart TV Hlubocky FJ et al, Family physician preferences and knowledge gaps regarding the care of adolescent and young adult survivors of childhood cancer. J Cancer Survivor, 2013.

– Beth Kurt, MD, pediatric oncologist, Spectrum Health Medical Group and co-director of the After Care and Transition (ACT) Program for childhood cancer survivors at Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital in Grand Rapids, MI.

Why You Should Avoid Excess Sugar After Gastric Bypass Surgery

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Dr. Jeremy Korman

bellyAs we are well aware, obesity is a national epidemic. Even the U.S. government recognizes it as a disease. However, despite out awareness and the ample supply of “diet” foods on the market, the number of Americans who are overweight or obese is continuing to rise. Until recently, it was believed the consumption of high amounts of fat was the main factor responsible for the problem. Recent studies, however, show that sugar can be just as dangerous. The FDA considers pure sugar to be a safe food at the recommended level of consumption. The problem is that Americans are consuming two to three times the recommended amount and in various forms, such as high-fructose corn syrup. For example, about half of the population consumes sugary beverages on daily bases.

Nutrition scientist require the FDA to limit the amount of sugar is soft drinks

Soda manufacturers have taken steps to limit the amount of added sugar in their beverages. As a result about 45 percent of all non-alcoholic beverages purchased today have zero calories. Still, despite the industries self-regulation, in February 2013 the Center for Science in the Public Interest filed a petition with the FDA to regulate the amount of sugar allowed in soft drinks.

The petition is supported by 41 nutrition scientists who have shown that sugary beverages account for half the sugar we consume. High levels of fructose, corn syrup, sucrose and other added sugars can contribute to:

• type 2 diabetes
• hypertension
• heart disease
• gout
• sleep apnea
• variety of cancers

sodabottleOn the other hand soft drink producers argue that reducing the amount of sugar in their products is not going to solve America’s obesity problem. The measure would be truly effective if sugar restrictions would be applied also for cereals, baked goods, or other processed foods.

Sugar consumption after gastric bypass surgery

For morbidly obese individuals gastric bypass surgery is often their last resort after years of diet and exercise programs have failed. The surgical procedure is recommended only for individuals with a body mass index of 40 or greater. The procedure works by reducing the volume of the stomach and bypassing most of the stomach and the small intestines. The procedure is meant to help morbidly obese individuals to reduce their weight by eating less and absorbing fewer calories. Most patients, who follow their doctors’ advice, will lose 60 to 70 percent of their excess weight in one year following surgery. Although gastric bypass surgery has a high success rate, in order for the individual to lose weight and avoid gaining it back, adopting a new diet and making lifestyle changes is required.

Patients should consume nutritious foods in small amounts, and, of course, avoid consuming large amounts of sugar in any form. Aside from the health problems associated with excess sugar, gastric bypass patients have another concern. With bypass patients, sugary foods pass rapidly into the intestine resulting in a very unpleasant condition called the “dumping syndrome”. In its attempt to dilute the sugars the body will flood the intestines. The affected individual will experience symptoms similar to those of hypoglycemic reaction, including:

• increased heart rate
• cold sweat
• a feeling of butterflies in the stomach
• anxiety
• diarrhea

Dietary tips for gastric bypass patients

doctorEven before a gastric bypass surgery is performed, patients should discuss their new diet with their surgeon or nutritionist. The diet prescribed for each patient can be slightly different and it should be respected as prescribed. However some general advice applies to all patients:

• eat several small meals every day to avoid poor nutrition and inadequate calorie intake

• take small bites and eat slowly to avoid vomiting

• avoid drinking liquids for at least 30 minutes after every meal

• make sure to drink plenty of sugar free beverages, especially water

• make sure to consume fruits, vegetables every day

• make sure to have an adequate protein intake especially in the first months after surgery to allow proper healing

• avoid sweets, especially sweetened beverages, juice drinks, milkshakes, and ice cream

• take vitamin and mineral supplements to avoid deficiencies caused by mal absorption

Besides respecting these dietary tips performing regular physical exercise is also recommended as it is efficient not just for losing weight but also for increasing muscle tone and firmness.

Dr. Jeremy Korman – medical director and chief surgeon at L.A. Bariatrics, a bariatric program and surgery center of excellence within Marina Del Rey Hospital. Together with his team Dr. Korman helps patients overcome the obesity and other heal problems related to it by offering a wide range of bariatric surgery options including: gastric sleeve, gastric bypass, lap-band and gastric plication.

Guest Post – Wesley Reacher, 5 Healthy After School Snacks For Kids

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fruitTo most kids, the time between lunch at school and dinner can seem like an eternity. They don’t need rumbly stomachs to remind them that they haven’t eaten in about four hours and that dinner won’t be served for another two hours or so, once everybody’s home from work. The afterschool snack’s origin is surrounded by mystery. No one knows where it came from, or if it just popped into existence after the first day of the first school. Regardless of its origin, the after school snack is here to stay and it’s up to us to make it fun and nutritious.

The nutrition challenge

The biggest challenge that parents can face today in terms of not only providing healthy foods to their children but getting them to eat the food once it’s served is school lunches.

The biggest challenge that parents can face today in terms of not only providing healthy foods to their children but getting them to eat the food once it’s served is school lunches. Even if we pack a healthy lunch for our kids every day, which is next to impossible, they will still be exposed to the unhealthy, fast-food style lunches at school. While there isn’t much we can do about what they eat while at school, we can definitely provide better alternatives for them once they’re home. There is no better place to start than with after school snacks.

The Snack Trifecta: quick, tasty, nutritious

cookieThe problem with most unhealthy food is that it’s darn quick and easy to make. Fried potato chips, frozen pizza rolls, hot pockets, and frozen corn dogs (and much more), are easy to prepare, are filling, and are full of empty calories and enough sodium to choke a pony. To make the perfect after school snack your kid is sure to love, you need to make your healthy option as much if not more tasty than the unhealthy option. There’s the rub. The problem with the unhealthy snacks is that they taste absolutely incredible, at least to a kid. I’ve come up with 10 healthy alternatives to unhealthy snacks that will satisfy all points of the snack trifecta.

Chips and Salsa

This classic healthy snack is about as easy to prepare as it gets. Just make sure that the chips are of a whole grain and baked variety with as little sodium as possible. Pretty much any salsa will do, but you could even go as far as to make homemade salsa. Feel free to add some fat-free and/or low cal cottage cheese for extra taste and healthy protein.

Homemade Trail Mix

It’s not as daunting as you might think to make your own nutritious and great tasting trail mix for your kids. The hardest part, (and it’s not really that hard) is buying all of the separate components, then combining them into the finished trail mix product. Luckily, your kids can be a big help when it comes to this and they will have fun doing it too. At your local grocery store, simply head to bulk bins and buy the peanuts, raisins, M&M’s, almonds, dried cranberries, pitted dates, or whatever else you like in your mix. Once you have a good one half to a full pound of each, then have your kids help you mix them all together in a big bowl at home. Your homemade trail mix will last and last and your kids can take pride in knowing that they helped.

Veggie chips with hummus

There are a lot of great all-natural veggie based chips out there. Pick up your family’s favorite baked veggie chip and serve them with some fresh hummus and salsa for a delicious veggie based snack that will satisfy just about any picky eater.

eggHard Boiled Eggs with String Cheese and/or pickles

If your kids are picky or just like very plain or uncomplicated foods, then set out a plate with about two hard boiled eggs per kid along with some dill pickles and/or string cheese. They will get a huge protein boost, and the fiber from the pickles will help keep them satisfied until dinner time comes around. It’s a super quick snack to prepare as well!

Cottage Cheese and Fruit

Cottage cheese is just about the world’s best source of whey and casein proteins. It can be high in calories and sodium, but if you shop for a healthier choice, it can definitely turn into a health food snack staple around the house. The great thing about casein is that it is a slow releasing protein, which keeps the body fed for hours and hours, which makes it the perfect thing to ward off hunger in the little ones. Serve your favorite cottage with chunks of fresh fruit for a nutritious and satisfying snack that will keep their stomachs from complaining until dinner time.

Regardless of what you decide to feed your kids for snacks, just make sure that they love them and that you can feel good about what they’re putting into their growing bodies. If your snacks can satisfy all of the criteria of the “snack trifecta,” then you can win your child’s heart and make sure they have the best nutrition possible, at least when you are around. The bottom line is that you have fun and that your kids enjoy snack time, no matter what you feed them.

wesley– Wesley Reacher has a B.S. in Kinesiology with a Minor in Sports Medicine. When he’s not gunning his lats at the gym or tearing it up on the frisbee golf course, he’s blogging for Weightnot.com, a great resource for healthy weight loss.