Three Types Of Fungi Responsible For Most Fungal Skin Infections

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footodorThree types of fungi are primarily responsible for the majority of fungal skin infections that afflict millions of Americans each year, says Joshua Fox, MD, medical director and founder of Advanced Dermatology P.C. Trichophyton, microsporum and epidermophyton, all part of the fungal genera category, are the three main culprits. Fungal infections of the skin account for about four million visits a year to outpatient medical facilities in the U.S. alone.

To understand how pervasive and hard-to-treat fungal skin infections can be, it is good to know how they emerge, explains Dr. Fox. Often described as superficial fungus infections, the microscopic organisms that cause them feed on warm, moist, dark environments, like the feet and the jock area. The four main microorganisms that cause fungal skin infections include bacteria, viruses, parasites and fungi.

Athlete’s foot, jock itch, ringworm

Athlete’s foot is perhaps the most common of the fungal skin infections and very often one of the most stubborn, says Dr. Fox. There are three different types, including interdigital athlete’s foot, the most common form; moccasin athlete’s foot, which begins on the sole and spreads to the side of the foot; and vesicular athlete’s foot, which is the least common and shows up as blisters on the bottom of the foot. In fact, athlete’s foot (“jungle rot” as it was called) was one of the most the most common foot problems Vietnam veterans have suffered, and they still plague many veterans today.

The clinical reason for such outbreaks is due to an imbalance of microorganisms in the body, Dr. Fox explains. “A decrease in bacteria and an increase in the growth of fungi, sometimes caused by the use of broad-spectrum antibiotics, is a common culprit,” he adds.

Jock itch is also a common complaint, especially among men. Jock itch, a form of ringworm, usually occurs in the groin area and on the upper, inner thighs and buttocks.

Ringworm, which can occur on the hands, nails, feet or scalp, typically appears as a circular rash with patches that may be red or peeling or have bumps that resemble blisters. Like the symptoms of athlete’s foot, the infected areas are often itchy and can spread easily. Blistering and cracking of the skin is particularly common on the feet.

A yeast-like fungus, known as Candida, is the culprit behind the common vaginal yeast infection, says Dr. Hu. Such yeasts normally live on the skin and mucous membranes without ever causing infection, she explains. But overgrowth of such organisms can produce an infection in certain areas of the body, adds Dr. Hu.

Tips for treating fungal skin infections

If over-the-counter medications don’t eliminate irritating fungal skin infections, Dr. Fox suggests medical intervention. The kind of treatment that’s given for most fungal skin infections depends on the severity of one’s condition, he notes. For some, oral treatment is the only solution.

“Many people have suffered with fungal skin infections for years,” Dr. Fox says. The choice of oral anti-fungal medications depends on the type of fungus that needs to be treated, the affected area, other co-existing diseases that a person might have and interactions with other medications currently being taken. The most common oral medications are Lamisil, Sporanox and Griseofulvin.

Maintaining best hygiene practices is perhaps the best way to prevent fungal skin infections from recurring or even happening at all. To prevent athlete’s foot, for example, Dr. Fox suggests wearing footwear in public locker rooms and shower areas. One should wash the feet daily and most importantly, dry them thoroughly. Wearing shoes that give feet room to breathe and wear cotton socks and underwear. If necessary use a powder to keep them dry.

Dr. Fox says that while fungal skin infections can be annoying to deal with, proper treatment and attention to hygiene practices can keep such conditions from recurring.

“Unfortunately there is evidence that fungal infections of the skin can recur, even after treatment,” says Dr. Fox. “However, with careful adherence to good hygiene and close monitoring we find that most patients can overcome fungal skin infections.”

Advanced Dermatology P.C., the Center for Laser and Cosmetic Surgery (New York & New Jersey) provides cutting edge medical, laser & cosmetic dermatology and plastic surgery services. http://www.advanceddermatologypc.com

Joshua L. Fox, M.D., F.A.A.D., is the founder and medical director at Advanced Dermatology P.C. He is a leading authority in the field of dermatology with expertise in skin cancer, cosmetic surgery and laser procedures and is program director of a fellowship in laser and cosmetic surgery

Judy Hu, M.D., F.A.A.D. is a board certified dermatologist with Advanced Dermatology P.C. Dr. Hu specializes in medical, surgical, and cosmetic dermatology with extensive experience in skin rejuvenation utilizing injections and laser therapy.

Are Certain Foods Responsible For Your Depression? – Part 2

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By Kac Young ND, DCH, PhD.

Continued from part 1 of this article…..

boyhamburgerFast Food is also known to contribute to depression: People who eat fast food are 51 percent more likely to develop depression than those who don’t, according to a 2012 study in the journal Public Health Nutrition. (2) This includes commercial baked goods, hamburgers, hot dogs and pizza, the researchers said.

The inflammation-linked diet consumed by the women in the study included lots of refined grains — including bagels, pasta and white rice — as well as soft drinks, red meat and margarine. This diet was also low in wine, coffee, olive oil and green leafy and yellow vegetables, study researcher Michel Lucas, Ph.D., a visiting scientist at the Harvard School of Public Health. (3) This diet was considered linked with inflammation because it was associated with levels of C-reactive protein, interleukin-6 and tumor necrosis factor α receptor 2 in the plasma; these are known markers of inflammation. (4)

If you think you have depression, get off the cycle of refined grains, fast foods and sugar. Replace those food traps with more whole grains (wheat or brown rice pasta) fresh vegetables, fresh fruits, lean and hormone free meats, reduce the amount of red meat and use chicken or turkey instead. Substitute soft sugary drinks for unsweetened drinks like water, pure iced tea, club soda or mineral water. You may use a small amount of fruit juice and add sparkling water to create your own refreshing drink. Say no to sodas.

Stay away from the fast food chains. If you must eat out choose Subway. Select whole wheat bread, go for the chicken, skip the cheese and stay away from the fatty dressings. Other chains offer salads, bowls of ingredients instead of tortilla-wrapped items and chicken or veggie instead of meat burgers. You can control how you feel by choosing what you eat. www.HeartEasy.com shows you how to treat your health and your body like the gifts they are.

References:

(1) http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/11/04/inflammation-diet-depression-women-refined-grains-soda_n_4212848.html

(2) http://www.livescience.com/41759-foods-linked-with-depression.html

(3) http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/11/04/inflammation-diet-depression-women-refined-grains-soda_n_4212848.html

(4) ibid

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.

Are Certain Foods Responsible For Your Depression? – Part 1

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By Kac Young ND, DCH, PhD.

riceAccording to recent studies, it’s possible that eating certain foods is associated with depression. Can you get happier then by eating differently? Absolutely!

Refined Grains can be causing your depression: Pasta may be a quick go-to meal for those busy nights when you don’t have a lot of time to prepare involved meals, but it is certainly not a good meal to have every night.

Pasta, white rice and bagels (all refined grains) are foods that have been identified as inflammatory and have been linked to depression in women ages 50 to 77, according to an October 2013 study in the journal Brain, Behavior and Immunity.

In the study, researchers looked at the eating habits of more than 40,000 women, who didn’t have depression at the study’s start. They found that those who consumed inflammatory foods regularly were more likely to suffer from depression by the end of the study.

Soft Drinks can also contribute to depression: It’s all too convenient to grab a “Coke” when you’re rushing around, but the same study in Brain, Behavior and Immunity study indicated that soft drinks as part of a regular diet may also contribute to depression. In the study, men and women who consumed one or more sugar-sweetened sodas per day were 16 percent more likely to have a stroke over a 20- to 30-year period, compared with those who drank no soda.

“Soda remains the largest source of added sugar in the diet,” said researcher Dr. Adam Bernstein, of the Cleveland Clinic’s Wellness Institute. “What we’re beginning to understand is that regular intake of these beverages sets off a chain reaction in the body that can potentially lead to many diseases — including stroke.” (1)

If a soda is your go-to drink when you’re thirsty, it may be time to switch to something healthier like water or unsweetened iced tea. Reduce your sugar intake and you will reduce inflammation in your body and help ward off depression.

Stay tuned for part 2 of this article shortly…..

References:

(1) http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/11/04/inflammation-diet-depression-women-refined-grains-soda_n_4212848.html

(2) http://www.livescience.com/41759-foods-linked-with-depression.html

(3) http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/11/04/inflammation-diet-depression-women-refined-grains-soda_n_4212848.html

(4) ibid

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.

Are Parents Responsible For Childhood Obesity?

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overweightboyFrom Your Health Journal…..”I just love the Policy Mic web site, always try to bring traffic their way. If you have never been to their site, please visit it, I will post a link below. Today’s article to discuss is called Are Parents Responsible For Childhood Obesity? – written by Abdulrahman El-Sayed. Childhood obesity has tripled since 1980. Today, about 17% of American kids are obese and 25% are overweight. Obesity related illness is also on the rise as many children show signs of heart disease, cancer, type 2 diabetes, and weak joints. Physical education and recreation programs are being cut, and technology is creating sedentary lifestyle. But, the author of this article is questioning whether parents may also be responsible for the rise in childhood obesity. The author writes, “In that respect, what has changed is the environment within which parents are making decisions about food. Rather than being able to choose between several healthy, affordable options, today’s post-subsidy world has rendered the most affordable options the least healthy, forcing parents’ hands in favor of less nutritious diets for children, particularly in low-income settings.” Please visit the Policy Mic web site (link provided below) to read the complete article.”

From the article…..

Recently, I wrote an open letter to LeBron James asking him to reconsider his endorsements with Coca-Cola and McDonald’s and an article decrying Beyoncé’s recent $50 million contract with Pepsi. Reaction to the articles was mixed. Many supported them, recognizing the implicit influence that stars like LeBron and Beyoncé have on the consumption habits of impressionable children.

Others were less supportive. They argued that rather than food companies and trend makers like LeBron and Beyoncé, children today are obese because their parents aren’t doing a good job controlling their children’s diets and coaching them to more active lifestyles.

But the numbers tell a different story.

Childhood obesity has tripled since 1980. Today, about 17% of American kids are obese and 25% are overweight. Such a drastic increase suggests that something has changed over the past 30 years. Getting to the bottom of what’s causing the childhood obesity epidemic means figuring out what is changing.

And it’s probably not parents.

In fact, the numbers suggest that parents are more worried about obesity than ever before. A recent poll found that parents are increasingly worried about childhood obesity— it tied with illegal drug use as the most prominent concern among parents these days.

If parents haven’t stopped caring about their kids’ eating and exercise habits, what has changed?

In 1973, high commodity prices were devastating grain farmers throughout the central U.S. In response, the Nixon administration initiated agricultural subsidies, artificially dropping the global price of corn and other grains. The reverberations of this move still echo throughout the food market — and have important implications for childhood obesity.

Subsidies keep the price of food, from beef to high-fructose corn syrup, artificially low. That, in turn, increases the number of people who eat foods containing these products both here in the U.S. and abroad. American farm subsidies have largely underwritten the global food corporations that have come to be synonymous with obesity, like Coca-Cola, Pepsi, and McDonald’s, by decreasing the cost of their starting materials and allowing them to sell their products at lower prices than the market would otherwise allow.

To read the full article…..Click here