If you’ve recently switched to a healthier diet, you might be surprised to learn that even some healthy foods are better than others. Select fruits, wines and fish, known as “superfoods,” help to promote heart health with extra benefits such as antioxidants and omega-3’s.
In addition to being a relaxing and tasty beverage, red wine has been shown to increase HDL cholesterol – that’s the good kind. This form of cholesterol is essential in fighting the formation of blood clots. Rich in powerful antioxidants, red wine provides cardiovascular benefits as well. Moderation is key – a glass a day is sufficient to boost your heart’s health.
One of America’s favorite fruits, blueberries have long been a staple of a healthy diet. While researchers initially advised against eating blueberries on account of the fruit’s low Vitamin C content, they have recently discovered that these tiny berries are rich in phytonutrients. Phytonutrients give the body an energy boost and have been shown to fight the formation of cancer cells.
In addition to being one of the most affordable varieties of fish on the market, tuna is ripe with powerful omega-3 fatty acids. Also called EFA’s, these fatty acids are shown to reduce LDL cholesterol – the bad kind, which can clog arteries and lead to heart disease. Add in the numerous benefits of omega-3 fatty acids, like increased brain function and better skin, and there’s no reason not to enjoy some tuna every now and then.
Think of salmon as the “high end” alternative to tuna. Priced a little higher, salmon contains the same omega-3 fatty acids and carries with it the same health benefits. As an added perk, the recipes for salmon are a bit more diverse and salmon has a flavor many people love.
While blueberries are notoriously low in Vitamin C, cherries have a great deal of this essential vitamin that helps to fight off disease by boosting the immune system. The antioxidants found in cherries help to prevent cancer, increase heart health and reduce aches and pains. They’re also rich in melatonin, which is essential in regulating the body’s internal clock.
All of these foods, when enjoyed in moderation, help to promote heart health and reduce the risk of cancer, dangerous blood clots, diabetes and more. If you have already been diagnosed with any of these medical conditions, these foods can also reduce symptoms, allowing you to have a better quality of life.
Diabetes is a modern epidemic. According to the American Diabetes Association (ADA), over 20 million Americans suffer from diabetes. The ADA classifies diabetes as “a group of diseases characterized by high blood glucose levels that result from defects in the body’s ability to produce and/or use insulin.” This can lead to complications such as high blood pressure, hypertension, stroke, heart disease, nerve damage (pain and numbness), kidney failure, amputation, and vision problems or even blindness.
To raise awareness of this growing trend, the ADA has designated March 22, 2011 as Diabetes Alert Day. This is a chance for people to determine their risk for pre-diabetes and type 2 diabetes by taking the online Diabetes Risk Test and learning more about the disease to take a proactive step to good health.
By asking questions about weight, age, family history, exercise and other lifestyle factors, the Type 2 Diabetes Risk Test can predict a person’s risk of the disease in terms of low, moderate or high. This is important because the good news is that diabetes can be prevented or even held in check. Taking precautions is also important; eating healthy and getting daily exercise is key.
Diabetes Alert Day also kicks off the ADA “Million Challenge,” which runs through April 22, 2011. During this time, the ADA will rally with a goal of getting at least one million people to take the Diabetes Risk Test. The test is available year round.
You can get your FREE Diabetes Risk Test (English or Spanish) by:
If you already suffer from diabetes or related complications, consider wearing a medical ID bracelet. In the event of an emergency, medical providers are trained to look for a medical ID bracelet to provide prompt and accurate treatment. You don’t have to worry about wearing a clunky, unattractive medical ID bracelet - American Medical ID carries a line of personalized and stylish jewelry that speaks for you when you can’t.
When parents are confronted with the reality that their child has a medical condition, such as early-onset diabetes or autism, often the first reaction is to worry. Some may wonder how their child can live a normal life away from the safety of home. With a kid’s medical ID bracelet, it’s possible for your little one to experience life and stay safe in the event of an emergency.
A child medical ID bracelet simply holds the key to understanding your child’s condition, should anything go wrong during their many adventures. A friend, parent or medical professional can read the information on the bracelet and immediately know the best course of action if an emergency arises. A child medical ID bracelet also gives you peace of mind when you can’t be with your child; you won’t have to worry that people will not understand his or her needs.
In addition to giving your child the ability to participate in the world around them with minimal worry, there are many summer camps and programs that cater to children with special needs. These programs help children bond with others who are like them, and it helps them to understand that they are not “abnormal” because of their special condition.
Your child has a vast array of options for safe playing, learning and growing — more than any generation of special needs children before them. Some precautions, a child medical ID bracelet, for example, as well as some unique social settings and heaping doses of love, can help them (and you) get much enjoyment out of life.
American Medical ID bracelets come in a wide variety of styles, so it’s a great way for kids and parents to talk about their needs, their preferences and (maybe most importantly) their personal style.
One of the most frightening diseases to plague our aging population is Alzheimer’s disease. While there is no cure for Alzheimer’s disease, advances in science and medicine can help slow the onset of symptoms. Learning to detect initial signs of the disease is essential for getting treatment in the early stages. There are 5 essential things to look for if you suspect that someone you know may be developing Alzheimer’s disease.
As we age, it’s true that many of us occasionally forget things now and then. However, people suffering from the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease become suddenly confused for no reason, forgetting momentarily where they are or what they were doing.
2. Memory loss
Similar to confusion, but a bit more serious, memory loss can have adverse effects on daily life. This can include forgetting to take medication, forgetting important dates like birthdays and anniversaries or not remembering names. This symptom of Alzheimer’s disease worsens over time.
3. Difficulty writing or speaking
You might notice, over time, that a loved one who may be suffering from this disease will occasionally lack the words to communicate. Alzheimer’s is known to have an adverse effect on a patient’s ability to put words into writing or speech. Also, penmanship may suffer as the disease progresses.
4. Personality changes
Alzheimer’s isn’t just about forgetting memories or words – this disease can result in drastic personality changes. The early may bring about loud outbursts of anger, happiness or sadness. Some people may experience anxiety or paranoia.
5. Poor judgment
As Alzheimer’s progresses, some patients make poor decisions and start doing things that are uncharacteristic or even dangerous. They will no longer know when enough is enough, and they may spend excessive amounts of money, start trusting anyone who knocks on their door and be easily influenced by others.
A pacemaker is a modern medical marvel. It regulates the beat of its owner’s heart through a system of leads and a small electronic device that is easily implanted with surgery. Pacemakers are very safe medical devices when used properly, but as they are electronic, there are a few general precautions that should be taken as outlined below:
Get Regular Checkups – To make sure your device is functioning properly, it is important to receive regular checkups from your medical provider. As pacemakers run on batteries, it needs to be checked at least once a year to make sure it’s not running out of juice.
Also, certain medical devices and procedures can be dangerous for patients with pacemakers. It’s essential that you tell a new doctor, dentist and any medical personal who provide you with services that you have a device installed.
Avoid Certain Electrical Devices – Understanding the types of electrical equipment that can interfere with the operation of your pacemaker is essential. Some cell phones, for instance, can interfere with pacemakers, but this is usually not the case unless the phone is held right up to device itself. If you decide to carry a cell phone, keep it in your pants pocket or purse and never place it close to your heart.
Identify Yourself – When dealing with a medical condition of any kind, it is important to make sure that those around you are aware of your situation. One of the easiest ways to do this is to wear medical alert bracelets, which are engraved with your specific condition. These bracelets are not bulky and can look very stylish as they come in a variety of colors and materials.
Doctors often recommend medical alert bracelets to patients with pacemakers. In the event of an accident or illness, paramedics are trained to look for medical alert identification to facilitate faster treatment. If your pacemaker malfunctions or you experience heart palpitations, this will come in handy, especially if you live alone.
Other types of electrical equipment can affect your pacemaker, including arc welding equipment and MRI machines. However, microwaves and standard household appliances will not affect the device’s operation. You can talk to your doctor for more information about the types of equipment that might pose a problem.
With the right precautions, a pacemaker can improve your quality of life. Patients with pacemakers are often more active and energetic, but as the devices carry some risks, understanding how your pacemaker works and how to keep yourself safe is very important.
Stay safe and stylish while living with a pacemaker by wearing a personalized medical ID bracelet from American Medical ID. Click here to view the many styles and fashions available to fit your needs. If you prefer something a little more discreet, consider a medical ID key chain or charm.
Few things frustrate pet owners more than suffering from pet-related allergies. For many pet owners, getting rid of their furry friend to alleviate allergies is not an option. If you suffer from pet allergies but aren’t willing to give up your best friend, consider the following ways to create an allergy-friendly home.
1. First, consult with your doctor to determine if medicine is available to help reduce or eliminate your allergic reactions. Over-the-counter antihistamines are often prescribed by allergists to treat pet allergies. This way, you can snuggle up with your pet and not worry about an itchy nose, watery eyes and bouts of sneezing.
2. Tackle your home’s flooring to help alleviate your pet-related allergies. If you have carpet, consider ripping it out and installing hardwood or laminate floors throughout your home instead. Carpet fabrics often retain a large number of allergens and, as a result, are much more difficult to clean. Hardwood floors, on the other hand, are more receptive to cleaning and you can often see pet dander or hair collecting on the floor for easy cleanup.
3. Consider leather furniture. Though a tad pricey, leather sofas and chairs don’t collect particles of pet dander and other allergens. If you can’t afford switching out your cloth furniture for leather, give your living room or other favorite lounge area a deep clean, and then designate it as a no-pet zone to help control your pet allergies.
4. Make sure you wash your hands thoroughly after touching or holding your pet. Also, avoid touching your eyes and nose before washing. Direct contact is OK as long as you take precautions.
5. Bathe your pet frequently. You don’t have to send Fluffy to the groomers several times a month – a quick rinse at home will work just as well. Use a mild soap and water to lightly scrub off any loose hair or dirt. Washing your pet on a regular basis will help reduce pet dander. Sometimes, water alone will do the trick.
6. Block off areas of your home to be ‘pet free’, such as your kitchen or other high traffic areas. By using a pet gate, you can restrict the amount of pet dander and hair accumulated in these rooms.
If you suffer with pet allergies or asthma but still want to keep your furry companion, consider wearing a medical ID bracelet that denotes your allergies in the event of an emergency. If you have an asthma attack and can’t speak, medical professionals will know what’s wrong by simply looking at your medical ID bracelet. American Medical ID offers affordable medical alert jewelry in many attractive colors and styles. You can even purchase a medical charm to attach to your pet’s collar.
One of the hardest things many people go through is the role reversal that accompanies their aging parents’ loss of mobility, cognition or combination thereof. It can be a struggle to adjust to caring for those who, for so long, were your primary caregiver.
Here are a few tips that will make caring for your elderly parents a better experience for both of you:
Many people often feel as though they must take their aging parents into their own homes and provide primary care themselves. This often leads to a good deal of stress and anxiety, as the children of elderly parents typically do not have the time or resources to be effective in this capacity. In assisted living homes, elderly parents can lead relatively normal, independent lives — even tending to their own gardens and cleaning duties. But, should a problem arise, help is always available and accessible.
The task of supporting your elderly parent in this new situation can be a daunting one, no matter if they’re living with you or in an assisted living environment. Because these scenarios are becoming more and more common, support groups can help a caregiver find friends and advice from those dealing with the same issues.
After a life of medical care, treating the elderly can easily result in scattered medical records, various medical opinions and overall disarray. Getting your elderly parents’ medical records consolidated and in one easy-to-find location will help the assisted living staff, or yourself, when a problem arises.
This process is stressful for your elderly parent too. The lines of communication must remain open between parent and child for the best possible outcome on both sides of the issue. Ask about their needs and wants, and communicate yours clearly in return.
While the reality of caring for elderly parents may at first seem unmanageable, a few preventative measures can ensure peace of mind and a smooth transition into a new chapter of your life and theirs. Be open, honest and cautious, and it’s likely that things will work out quite well.
For elderly parents who have medical conditions or may be experiencing minor cognitive problems, medical alert jewelry can literally be a life saver. The styles of medical alert jewelry span the gamut from dog tags to truly classy pieces that look like they came from a traditional jewelry store, but both have a dual function.
If your elderly parent becomes ill or incapacitated in any way and is unable to speak, medical alert jewelry will list his or her medical condition and assist any emergency personnel who arrive on the scene. Medical alert jewelry, quite simply, eliminates the guess work of treating your loved one.
When an emergency strikes, every minute counts, especially for diabetics. Paramedics, nurses and other medical professionals are trained to check for medical alert jewelry when attempting to treat patients who may be unconscious, or simply unresponsive. Wearing diabetes dog tags can save time, and possibly your life.
There are two types of diabetes. With Type 1, the body simply is not producing enough insulin. With Type 2, the problem may be that insulin production is low, or it may be that cells are actually ignoring the insulin. To deliver the proper treatment quickly, medical personnel must know which type of diabetes they are dealing with. This can consume precious time. Also, contact information must be found for the family.
With diabetes dog tags or any other type of medical alert jewelry, the medical staff will know exactly which type they are treating instantly. And with the free online personal health record from Online Medical Registry that comes with your medical alert jewelry, your personal contact is just as easily accessible.
There are many people who suffer from diabetes, but are not willing to wear flashy jewelry that essentially labels them. Bracelets can be bulky, and some may feel as though they are advertising their disease. Diabetes dog tags provide people with a stylish alternative. Dog tags are worn by members of the military, so people do not automatically identify them with any type of medical condition.
Dog tags traditionally are inscribed with the wearer’s blood type, so medical professionals are used to going directly to the tags for pertinent information. They provide diabetics of all ages with the safety they want in a stylish package that they can comfortably wear 24 hours a day. They can be worn over your shirt as a unique accessory, or the necklace can be hidden under your shirt. No matter how you wear them, diabetes dog tags are essential to staying safe.
People with other medical conditions can also benefit from wearing medical alert jewelry. These include any specific allergies that medical personnel would ask about in case of an emergency. American Medical ID provides diabetes dog tags, other diabetes identifying medical alert jewelry and unique medical ID accessories to help you take the precaution you need.
What was once thought of as a man’s disease, heart disease has taken the lives of more women than cancer, Alzheimer’s disease and accidents combined. Taking preventative measures from is more necessary now than ever due to rising insurance costs. In 1999, the American Heart Association (AHA) published the first set of recommendations for preventing this deadly disease based on clinical research. Now, more than 10 years later, women need something a little more straightforward to keep them on track to good heart health.
Every woman is different and the following life factors must be taken into consideration when devising a preventative plan:
Clinical studies target a specific type of woman. But the United States was founded by immigrants and now, diversity reigns more than ever. According to the American Heart Association, about 81 percent of heart disease deaths occur among lower to middle income women. This could be contributed to the present economy, which could make maintaining a healthy diet and lifestyle next to impossible. Also, with medications so expensive, taking medicine may not be an option for some. Stress also plays a factor. Learning to eat healthier and decrease stress levels is important to heart health.
The new AHA findings recognize that many women are suffering from other, more modern disorders such as obesity and diabetes. Knowing this, the AHA has been hard at work and has now published the 2011 update to the cardiovascular disease prevention guidelines for women. Not only has so much changed in the last decade, but the AHA has taken a more practical approach to these new and improved guidelines.
The most critical step in prevention is for women to get a conversation going with their doctors. It is impossible to fully understand the risks of heart disease without taking this first step. And because each woman is unique physically, a full evaluation is necessary to begin the prevention process.
Some say that knowledge is power, so there is a lot women can do once they know their own personal risks for heart disease. Full disclosure between patient and doctor is absolutely necessary, but it’s not just the doctor who should know. In the event of an emergency, all caretakers should know a woman’s medical history as well. This does not just apply to close family members, but emergency personnel, too.
Women are advised not to smoke and to avoid environmental tobacco smoke. Nicotine replacement, pharmacotherapy options, behavioral programs or formal smoking cessation programs should be pursued with the advice of your doctor.
Women are advised to consume a diet rich in fruits and vegetables; to choose whole-grain, high-fiber foods; to consume fish, especially oily fish, at least twice a week; to limit intake of saturated fat, cholesterol, alcohol, sodium, and sugar; and avoid trans-fatty acids.
Women should maintain or lose weight through an appropriate balance of physical activity, caloric intake, and formal behavioral programs when indicated to maintain or achieve an appropriate body weight (eg, BMI 25 kg/m2 in US women), waist size (eg, 35 in), or other target metric of obesity.
Medical ID jewelry is a smart way for a woman with heart disease or potential risks to inform medical officials of her current condition. If the emergency is so serious that she can’t speak, assessing the situation and trying to determine her medical needs could cost emergency personnel critical time. And with heart problems, time could be the determiner between life and death.
American Medical ID carries medical alert bracelets for women that are engraved with essential personal health information. They are also very stylish and easy to wear. Because it’s clear that each woman has unique tastes, dog tags, necklaces, charms, key chains, and other accessories are just as easy to carry around at all times.
For the complete 2011 update to the AHA cardiovascular disease prevention guidelines for women, see the full article published in Circulation, the official journal of the American Heart Association.
Medical alert bracelets and jewelry come in a variety of fun and attractive styles for people with metal allergies.
Medical ID jewelry is a special emblem or tag worn to identify someone as having a potentially serious medical condition. In the event of an emergency, medical ID jewelry such as medical alert bracelets can help paramedics properly treat an individual. This jewelry is typically made from metal and is meant to be worn on the wrist or around the neck. But some people are allergic to metal and may need to find an alternative.
Most people who have a metal allergy are allergic to nickel. Nickel is mixed with other metals as an alloy, and it may cause a skin reaction that can include itching, swelling and redness where contact occurs. The skin can blister and burn from just a small amount of contact. This can make wearing jewelry a painful experience. For that reason, it is important to exercise caution when selecting medical identification jewelry.
Medical alert bracelets and jewelry can now be made with silicone, plastic beads, leather, yarn and waterproof fabrics. Some higher grade metals may still work for people with certain metal allergies. Popular metal choices include platinum, titanium, sterling silver, and yellow gold is 12 carats or higher.
Jewelry is not the only option available. Key chains and charms are available that can attach to purses or shoes. Another innovative option to consider is a USB medical alert tag. It is a flash drive that can be plugged into any computer, and it contains any relevant information that someone might need to know about a person’s medical history. It can include information such as a physician’s name and phone number, any medications being taken, special health needs and emergency contacts.
American Medical ID offers stylish alternatives to metal jewelry such as sport band IDs made from nylon. Sportbands come in 10 color and pattern options and adjust to fit any size wrist. Also, choose from a unique selection of key chains, wallet ID cards, health passports and USB drives to facilitate all your medical ID needs.