Sunday, May 28, 2017

Should You Worry About Your Body Aches?


When You Ache All Over

Muscle pain that affects a small part of your body is usually caused by overuse -- sore arms from lifting boxes all day, for example. Or it could be a minor injury, like a bruised shoulder after a fall. But when you ache all over your body, it’s more likely caused by an infection, illness, or medicine you’ve taken.

The Flu

When a flu virus hits, it brings on fever and congestion, and it can make your muscles ache, especially in your back, legs, and arms. It usually gets better on its own in a week or so, but call your doctor if it doesn’t. You also should see him if you have other health problems and you get the flu or you have a cough that doesn’t go away.

Hypothyroidism

This is when your thyroid gland doesn’t make enough of certain key hormones. It can cause muscle and joint aches, as well as swelling and tenderness. It can make you tired and lead to memory problems, thinning hair, dry skin, high cholesterol, slowed heart rate, and other issues. Your doctor can do a simple blood test to find out if you have it, and if so, drugs can help replace the missing hormones.

Blood Flow Problem

If you have pain in your arms, legs, or both, your muscles may not be getting enough blood -- a problem called claudication. At first, you may notice it only when you exercise, but in time, you might feel it when you sit or walk. This is usually caused by a condition called arteriosclerosis, which is when there’s blockage in the tubes that carry blood to your muscles.

Lupus

This is a kind of autoimmune disease -- it causes your immune system, which normally helps protect your body, to attack your tissues and organs. When lupus affects your joints or muscles, it can make them stiff, and it can hurt to move. There’s no cure, but medication and certain exercises can help control your symptoms. Talk to your doctor about what would work best for you.

Rheumatoid Arthritis

This is also an autoimmune disease -- it mainly affects your joints and can lead to bone loss. It can cause pain and inflammation all over your body, and your joints may swell into odd shapes. Medication and physical therapy can help with your symptoms, but there’s no cure. In some cases, you may need surgery to repair the affected joints.

Dermatomyositis

This autoimmune disease makes your muscles and joints ache and causes painful, itchy, red or purple rashes on your eyelids. It also makes spots on your knuckles, elbows, knees, and toes, can dry your skin, thin your hair, and cause swollen, irritated skin around your fingernails. It can be triggered by infection, drugs, or cancer. There’s no cure, but your doctor can help you manage your symptoms with drugs and physical therapy.

Fibromyalgia

This condition can cause pain in your joints and muscles as well as problems with sleep, mood, and memory. Scientists think it happens when your brain takes normal, mild pain signals and mistakenly makes them worse. It may be triggered by illness, surgery, or severe mental stress. Medicine can ease symptoms, and exercise and relaxation techniques like yoga may help, too.

Polymyositis

This happens when something -- possibly a virus or a problem with your immune system -- inflames muscles all over your body, especially in your belly, shoulders, upper arms, hips, and heart. Over time, your muscles can start to break down, and it might be hard to swallow or catch your breath. Your doctor may suggest drugs to ease inflammation or calm your immune system and physical therapy to help you regain muscle strength.

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

The main symptom of this condition is extreme tiredness (fatigue) that can’t be explained by anything else. It may get worse with exercise or mental strain, but rest doesn’t make it better. You also may have muscle pain, memory problems, sore throat, joint pain, and headaches, and you may not be able to sleep well. There’s no cure, but medication and physical therapy can help manage your symptoms.

Polymyalgia Rheumatica

This quickly brings pain and stiffness in your shoulders, neck, upper arms, buttocks, hips, or thighs that can be worse in the morning. You also may have fever, fatigue, weight loss, depression, and no appetite. Doctors think certain genes can make you more likely to get it. Something in the environment, like a virus, also may play a part. Steroids can ease pain and inflammation, and your symptoms may go away, but the condition can return.

Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever

Bacteria called R. rickettsii cause it, and a tick bite is usually how you get it. Most of the symptoms are flu-like -- fever, chills, headache, nausea, insomnia, and muscle aches. A rash that doesn't itch can show up on your wrists and ankles after a few days, then spread. Antibiotics treat it, and the sooner you take them, the better. If not treated, it can lead to inflammation in your lungs, heart, and brain, then kidney failure.

Lyme Disease

Bacteria from a tick bite also cause this. It can bring on fever, chills, tiredness, body aches, and a headache. Another sign is a “bull’s-eye” rash that’s clear in the middle and grows over a period of days -- it can be up to 12 inches across. The rashes -- there can be more than one -- don't necessarily show up near the bite. Lyme disease is treated with antibiotics, but some people still have aches and tiredness after finishing the drugs.

Medications

Drugs called statins are used to control high cholesterol, and about 30% of people who take them say they have muscle pain. If this is happening with you, talk to your doctor. She may be able to give you a different medication.

High-Protein Diets: The Good and the Bad


Too Good to Be True?

Lose weight while eating steak, burgers, cheese, and bacon? High-protein, low-carb plans like Atkins and the Zone can work. But you should consider the pros and cons before you decide to try one.

How Much Protein?

Women need at least 50 grams of protein a day -- men about 60 grams per day. With a high-protein diet, it can be much more than that. This extra protein can come from beans, meat, nuts, grains, eggs, seafood, cheese or vegetarian sources like soy. These diets often restrict carbs like cereals, grains, fruits, and possibly vegetables.

How Do High-Protein Diets Work?

When you cut out carbohydrates, you lose weight quickly because you lose water. Then, with no extra carbs, the body begins burning more fat for fuel. This can lead to ketosis, which may make losing weight easier because you feel less hungry. Ketosis may cause temporary headaches, irritability, and nausea but appears to be safe long-term.

Pros and Cons

You can lose weight on a high-protein diet. Choose lean meats and dairy for your proteins. Find a program that includes vegetables, so you don't miss out on fiber and other important nutrients.

Starting a High-Protein Diet

Be choosy. The best high-protein plans focus on lean proteins and include some carbs. Avoid huge helpings of fatty meats and make sure to include vegetables. Ask your doctor, or a dietitian, to help you pick the right diet.

Choose Lean Beef

Nothing says protein like a nice, juicy steak. And if you choose a lean cut, you will get all of the protein with far less unhealthy fat. In fact, a lean cut of beef like a top round steak has barely more saturated fat than a similar-sized skinless chicken breast.

Don't Overlook Pork

Pork offers plenty of protein without too much fat, if you know what type to buy. Look for tenderloin, top loin, rib chops, sirloin steak, or shoulder blade steaks. Pork cuts are much leaner than they were decades ago.

Fish Offers Healthy Fats

Fish is loaded with protein and almost always low in fat. Even the fish that have more fat, such as salmon and tuna, are good choices. Those fish generally have omega-3 fatty acids, which are good for your heart. Most people don't get enough omega-3s.

Eggs for Low-Cost Protein

Eggs are a good source of lean protein. But even though there is cholesterol in the yolk, experts say the cholesterol you eat does not raise levels in your blood. Saturated fats and trans fats are more likely to raise your cholesterol numbers.

Try Soy

Protein doesn't come only from animals. Tofu, soy burgers, and other soy-based foods are plant-based sources of protein. Bonus: Eating 25 grams of soy protein daily may help lower cholesterol.

Eat More Beans

A cup and a half of beans has about as much protein as 3 ounces of broiled steak. Along with protein, the fiber in beans helps you feel full longer and also helps lower your LDL ("bad") cholesterol.

Low-Fat Dairy Adds Calcium

Milk, cheese, and yogurt give you protein and calcium for strong bones and a healthy heart. Low-fat, nonfat, or reduced-fat dairy products can help you keep calorie counts down.

Go Whole Grains, Go Fiber

Most high-protein diets limit grains, so make sure the grains you do eat are pulling their weight. Favor whole grains. You'll get fiber and nutrients. If you're buying products made with whole grains, check the labels to make sure they're not high in sugar or fat.

Leave Room for Fruits and Veggies

Most low-carb diets still include some vegetables but often limit fruit. There's no known harm to cutting out fruit temporarily to keep your carb count down. However, for your long-term health choose a plan that includes fruit after you reach your weight goal.

Inspirational Quote – May 28, 2017

“Remembering a wrong is like carrying a burden in the mind.”

Easier said than done! When somebody does us wrong we tend to brood and allow it to fester and grow in our mind. Over time, if we refuse to let it die a natural death and fade away never to be thought of again, like a boil or a carbuncle it grows and grows and grows…. We continue to feed it from a menu of anger, vengeance, and our sense of injustice. Now, is this actually doing anything to the person who caused it? Of course it isn’t! All this does is torment and prevent us from thinking clearly and getting on with our lives content and at peace. Let it go, just let it go, you don’t need it, really you don’t!

CathiBew.co.uk

The Bicycle Machines of Guatemala

Since 1997, Maya Pedal has been focused on sustainable development in Guatemala. Locals were handed control in 2001. Recycling bicycles from the USA and Canada to create Bicimaquinas or pedal-powered machines is one of the ways the organization benefits the developing nation. But it wasn't always easy. In this video, director Mario Juarez shares how the program kept getting rejected, while also demonstrating the perseverance it took to create a positive impact.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Inspirational Quote – May 27, 2017

“A tree that is unbending is easily broken.”

Now this is quite straightforward isn’t it? We all know that trees are usually firmly planted and sturdy don’t we? However, when a gale force wind blows and the tree doesn’t “give” in order to cope there is every chance that the wind will persevere until the tree is just ripped from the earth and blown whichever way the wind chooses. Just like the beautiful trees we are buffeted occasionally by situations, people, or stress, and if we don’t bend and adapt in order to deal with these, we too may be broken in spirit.

CathiBew.co.uk

Helping Young Adults Successfully Transition out of Foster Care

For children reaching the age at which their foster care ends, transitioning to adulthood can be extremely difficult. While other young adults can rely on their families for advice or financial support, these youth are entirely on their own. First Place for Youth is an organization that is offering 'a hand up' in the transition to adulthood with housing and support to help those who 'age out' of the foster care system to succeed. According to the University of Chicago's Chapin Hall Center for Children, 24 percent of young people are homeless after leaving the system and almost half end up in prison within two years. Providing an apartment with a covered security department and rental fees, First Place for Youth has four main goals for the foster children it supports: find stable employment, locate housing that matches their income, complete two semesters of community college or a certificate program and, finally, achieve "healthy living," which means avoiding arrests, unintended pregnancies and substance abuse.