Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Healthy Lifestyle - A Comprehensive Approach

"What is this life full of care?

We have no time to stand and stare."

- William Henry Davies

Reflecting the hectic and complicated nature of present day lifestyles, this quote is a grim reminder of the precedence acquired by material considerations over health and happiness. In our eagerness to earn more, we have neglected the balance between various aspects of life. Research has proved the link between contemporary lifestyles and disorders like obesity, heart and lung diseases, depression, anxiety, mood disorders etc.

The World Health Organization (WHO) defines health as the state of complete physical, psychological, and social well being, not merely the absence of disease. Therefore, a healthy lifestyle is one that leads to such a complete state of well being. Broadly speaking, a healthy lifestyle can be attained by adherence to the following:
  • Positive Thinking: The mind has great power over the body. The hardest part is making up your mind. If you are determined to adopt a healthy lifestyle - there is always a way. Develop a positive self image and be yourself. You can do well by not being unduly influenced by what other people say and by being ambitious only to a reasonable degree.
  • Balanced Diet: A balanced diet contains adequate amounts of nutrients like carbohydrates, proteins, vitamins, and fats along with fiber and water. These are essential for efficient operation of the body. Fruits, vegetables, cereals, milk, and meat, should be sufficiently consumed in a balanced manner. Consuming whole grains and salads is particularly beneficial. If you are fond of intoxicating brews, opt for red wine that is an appetizer and aids digestion. Liquor is beneficial only in moderate quantities.
For best results, distribute the food intake throughout the day and progressively decrease it as the day progresses. Include proteins in your diet at the start of the day - these suppress the feeling of hunger and, thereby, limit the desire for eating junk items between meals.

Herbal nutritional supplements are a natural way of compensating diet imbalances. They also improve immunity, memory, and sleep quality.
  • Exercise: A thirty minute daily workout keeps the body fit. Priority should be given to cardiovascular / cardio exercises like brisk walking, jogging, aerobics, skipping / jumping rope, swimming, bicycling etc. which increase the heart rate and maintain it for a sustained duration. These exercises improve the heart rate, metabolism, immunity, and hormonal profile. Cardio exercises are different from Pilates that focus on strength building and stretching. Cardio exercises are more effective for burning calories and weight maintenance. Yoga, meditation, and breathing exercises are beneficial for similar reasons.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Making Meal Replacement for Weight Loss Work

Meal replacement for weight loss can work for many people. Many individuals struggle to finally turn the corner and to start achieving their goals. Yet, it is incredibly important for you to take the time to find the right program and then stick with it. Sometimes, it all comes down to making a decision each time you sit down to eat the right thing. This is not easy. One way to take the risk out of the equation is to use a program designed to make it simple. It does the work for you. All you have to do is to follow the plan as it should be followed and you will see the results you want.

How Replacements Can Help

There are many ways that a meal replacement for weight loss can help you. If you are one of the many people that has trouble making the right eating decisions due to time factors, portion control, emotional eating, or other concerns, this type of plan removes that risk. You don't have to make any decisions at all. You do not eat more than you should. Ultimately, this will mean that you are less likely to make a mistake that will affect your goals.

For many people, the reason they do not eat a well balanced, portion controlled meal is the lack of time to prepare it. It is far easier to drive through a fast food restaurant instead of trying to do it on your own. Who has the time to plan a meal, not to mention make it? If that is the case, this type of choice makes it easy. You no longer are at risk of not having the food you need at hand.

Minimizing Risk Factors

It is easy to take a second portion or to enjoy a snack even when you are on such a plan. The problem is, doing this could really cost you in the long term. If you want this plan to work for you, you need a foolproof way of cutting out the risks. Replacements for your meals can help. They make it easy by keeping you from eating too much of the wrong thing. More importantly, they help you to get the type of food you really need.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Top Tips on How to Stay Healthy

Physical fitness is not the sole basis of being healthy; being healthy means being mentally and emotionally fit. If you want to be a well-rounded, healthy individual, here is a couple of staying healthy tips that may help you do just that:

Maintain an exercise routine

No, you do not have to force yourself into intense workouts at the gym if you do not want to. You can stick to easy floor exercises or simply keep yourself moving by doing some house chores. What is important is that you continue exercising. Give at least thirty minutes a day to workout and/or exercise at least three to five times a week.

Have a routine; see to it that you have enough physical activity each day. Remember, the more you keep moving, the more calories you burn; the higher your metabolism will be-and the higher the metabolism, the better physical fitness.

Be conscious in your diet

To stay healthy, you need to keep eating healthy. Add more fruits and vegetables in your diet and less of carbohydrates and unhealthy fat. Avoid eating junk food and sweets. Avoid skipping a meal-this will only make your body crave for more food the moment you resume eating. And the tendency is, one will stuff himself with whatever food that is there-and this practice can be very unhealthy.

Remember to burn more than you eat. If you are eating more, you need to move more. This practice will help you lose weight and keep a fit body. If one wants to simply maintain his/her current weight, match the amount of your workout with your food intake.

Engage in the things you are passionate about

Every now and then, to keep the stress and the demands of life from taking over you, take a break to do something you love doing. Play some instruments, draw some pictures, read novels, watch a few episodes of your favorite show, bake, cook-just do whatever it is that will make your spare time much more enjoyable and productive as well. Giving time for hobbies will help you unwind, relax and boost your self-confidence.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Foam Sclerotherapy and Stroke: The Facts

In a clinical audit in the United Kingdom of 7,027 patients who had undergone 11,537 foam sclerotherapy procedures, no cases of stroke were reported.

· In France alone, 1.5 million sessions of sclerotherapy are performed each year. Around the world, it is quite likely that millions of sclerotherapy treatments are performed each month.

· In a prospective registry of 12,713 sclerotherapy procedures in France, no cases of stroke were reported.

· Only 13 cases of stroke after sclerotherapy have been published in the world despite the huge number of these procedures being performed around the world each day. Some involved liquid sclerotherapy (4 cases), not just foam (9 cases). The majority (10 out of 13) made a complete recovery. Of the 3 cases of stroke after sclerotherapy that did not make a complete recovery, 2 occurred after liquid sclerotherapy.

· Stroke is a much greater risk after any operation under general anaesthetic including surgical vein stripping than after Foam Sclerotherapy.

· In my opinion, Foam Sclerotherapy is very safe. In fact, I believe it is much safer than traditional operations under GA such as stripping which are usually recommended by most vascular surgeons for the removal of varicose veins.

Ultrasound-guided Foam Sclerotherapy

Injection treatments have been used for many years to treat varicose veins. Two recent developments now allow us to use an injection technique to treat varicose veins that was previously only treatable by surgery. These are the use of ultrasound to guide the injection and the preparation of the chemical as foam. Over the last 10 years or so, the use of foam injection was spread widely in France, Spain and Italy and more recently the technique is being used in the USA. The treatment can be performed as a "walk in, walk out" or "lunch hour procedure".

What is foam Sclerotherapy?

The solutions that are injected are exactly the same as those which are already used to treat varicose veins. These are mixed with air to create foam, which looks a little like hair mousse, or shaving foam. Many medical and scientific studies have confirmed that Foam Sclerotherapy has an excellent safety record and that it produces excellent results in the treatment of vein reflux and varicose veins.

Who is suitable for Foam Sclerotherapy?

Most people with small or moderate sized varicose veins can be treated in this way. People with severe vein reflux are usually best treated by Laser or VNUS Closure FAST to obtain a more rapid improvement. People with large varicose veins lying close to the skin are also better treated by Microphlebectomy to avoid the brown discolouration of the skin which may occur after foam Sclerotherapy.

Key features

· Ultrasound guided sclerotherapy is a new method of treating varicose veins

· There is no need for an operation under general anaesthetic

· The treatment involves injections under local anaesthetic

· A treatment session is complete in about 45 minutes

· The treatment is carefully monitored using ultrasound

· A firm compression bandage must be worn for a week afterwards

· The cost of treatment are much lower than for surgical methods

· Minimal or no time off work

How does the foam work?

After injection, the foam pushes the blood out of the way and completely fills the vein. The lining of the vein is instantly removed by the foam (this doesn't hurt) and the vein responds by shrinking and the vein walls stick together. The channel through the vein is sealed and over the course of a few months the vein is completely absorbed by the body's healing processes.

The treatment

Treatment is performed in a treatment room and not an operating theatre. The patient rests comfortably on an examination couch. A small amount of local anaesthetic is used to numb the skin of the leg and a small needle is inserted into the refluxing vein that is feeding the varicose veins. The position of the needle is carefully monitored using ultrasound so that feeder veins are closed. Foam is then injected and its progress into the feeder veins and varicose veins is care-fully monitored with ultrasound. The whole treatment usually takes no more than 45 minutes. Finally a firm bandage is applied to the leg. The aim of this is to keep the veins compressed so that they do not fill with blood when the patient stands up. The bandage is usually worn for a week followed by an elastic compression stocking for a further week. When the bandages are removed at the follow-up appointment it is usual to find that all the varicose veins have been sealed. The leg may be a little bruised at this stage, although this is usually fairly minor. If any varicose veins have not been completely treated in the first session, they are injected and bandaged to complete removal of all veins. If varicose veins are present in both legs, the treatment is given to one leg at a time with an interval of 1 to 2 weeks.