Month: November 2017

Modified Citrus Pectin: Risks Associated with Managing Colon Health

Healthcare demands are expected to rise as we age and often the conditions we seek treatment for are conditions we can naturally treat at home. If you are about to enter into the retirement phase of your life, and if you are looking for ways to minimize your healthcare costs, you may be inclined to utilize natural supplements including the use of pectin for colon health. Before doing so, however, it is important to know what risks are associated with modified citrus pectin supplements.

Natural supplements, such as modified citrus pectin, can be purchases without a prescription through many alternative medicine, vitamin, or naturopath shops. Because these types of supplements do not require a prescription, they are typically not controlled by the FDA so claims about their health benefits may not be substantiated. With modified citrus pectin, the supplement is often touted as a way for older adults to maintain good colon health without the need for colon cleansing therapy.

While these claims about modified citrus pectin may be true, there are also health risks associated with using this natural fruit supplement. In older adults who have a cholesterol complication, and who utilize cholesterol-managing drugs, the use of modified citrus pectin may actually decrease the absorption of your medication – resulting in poor cholesterol management.

In addition to cholesterol drug complications, if you are suffering from any type of metabolic disorder or nutritional deficiency, modified citrus pectin may further complicate these conditions. Because pectin decreases the absorption of minerals, including zinc, iron, and calcium, your health may be adversely affected by using this natural supplement for colon health.

Before starting any natural supplementation regimen, it is important to speak with your physician about the risks and benefits. If you are looking for a more natural way to manage your colon health, and keep healthcare costs down later in life, your doctor may be able to provide other options that will not have the same risks as modified citrus pectin.

Sources: The Seven Pillars of Health, by Don Colbert

Signs of Depression

Depression isn’t always as easy to recognize as one might think. Sometimes it is circumstances that bring on depression. Perhaps the loss of a job, a major move, stress, death of a loved one, marital or relationship problems or even health conditions can wreck havoc on ones mental state. When do you decide it is just a phase or something more?

Do you find yourself feeling out of sorts? Has your routine changed? You know, you get up everyday make your bed, eat breakfast, perhaps run a few errands before lunch, but now, your bed is unmade and the breakfast you would have eaten, is now a donut while you lay on the couch and watch television. You can’t seem to find the interest you once had in much of anything. In general, your life revolves around much of nothing. It isn’t just one thing, it’s everything. You can’t put your finger on it and when asked what is wrong, you can’t say.

Do your friends or family mention any differences in your behavior? Perhaps your spouse has noticed a decrease in sex drive? These are signs of depression. They can come on slowly or hit you all at once. It isn’t always like it is in the movies, when they show someone curled up in a ball in a dark room, constantly thinking of suicide. Depression can sneak up on you and you never saw it coming. We all want to think of ourselves as strong and that it could never happen to us, but it does. Thoughts of suicide is the huge red flag some people get with depression, but it can be much more subtle things are signs also.

Recognizing there is a problem is the first step to obtaining help. Some things can be overcome, obtaining a new job after losing one, a new relationship might snap you out of it. But, not all solutions are so simple. Of course, there are health conditions that can cause depression also, such as, diabetes, or perhaps a thyroid condition which can cause hormonal imbalances. It can be as simple as, a change in medication or a new medication you have started taking. Whatever the cause, treatment should be sought.

Depression doesn’t have to take over your life. Recognizing the signs is great beginning to overcoming the problem. Talk with your health care provider if you have one. If not, seek help from a family member or close friend. There are many places in the phone book listed under mental health, that are willing to help also.

Depression is something that does not always go away by itself. Never be ashamed to ask for help. Remember, you are not the first person to have depression and you won’t be the last. Get yourself on the road to better health today.

Addressing Mental Health Goals for the New Year

As we enter a new year, many of us commit to new physical health without addressing our mental health, as well. The holidays typically foster actions of indulgence; not only in rich foods, but in excessive partying. In retrospect, many of us can actually admit to partying all year long! Obviously, this is not a healthy lifestyle but we don’t do anything about it because the undertaking seems impossible. For some of us, it would be without enlisting the help of professionals.

Drug and alcohol use can be symptoms of underlying mental conditions. So can obsessive behaviors such as hoarding or gambling. We sometimes use these substances and behaviors to self medicate our depression or other underlying mental disorders. To find out if you might suffer from a mental condition, try taking an online evaluation by going to http://www.healthyplace.com/psychological-tests/.

Should you test positive on any of the evaluations, make an appointment with your family doctor as soon as possible. Bring your test results to your appointment and discuss your concerns with your physician. Family doctors can prescribe anti-depressants for mild depression. But for anything else beyond that, insist on a referral to a psychiatrist, as they are trained to deal with all other disorders and related medications. If you are considering over the counter or natural remedies you should discuss these with your doctor, as well.

Once your treatment begins, it is vital to stop “self-medicating”. Treatment of your medical condition will not magically make drinking, drugging or obsessive behaviors stop, but it can make stopping easier. Your body has become accustomed to certain substances and may continue to crave them. Detoxing from drugs and alcohol can not only be uncomfortable, but can also have medical (even fatal) consequences if not medically supervised. Check with your doctor to see if medical supervision will be necessary for your detox.

Finding support as you stop using alcohol, drugs or compulsive behaviors is also an important component to your mental and emotional health and recovery. There are a myriad of 12 step groups available to offer support (i.e. Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, Gamblers Anonymous). You can find an extensive list of 12 step groups by visiting http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_twelve-step_groups . Depending on your diagnosis, your psychiatrist may prescribe therapy as part of your treatment.

Commit to being honest about your situation. It isn’t easy, but professionals are trained to deal with our mental health as well as our physical health. So don’t be afraid. Being honest shows true courage.

5 Steps to a Healthier Home

Want a healthier home? Toxins in your house– from your mattress to your ceilings– may be responsible for dozens of common ailments, from everyday fatigue to serous illnesses such as cancer. Fortunately, these simple steps can help you make your home greener, safer and healthier.

1. Don’t smoke indoors. It goes without saying that you’ll have a healthier home if you smoke outdoors (or not at all). Secondhand smoke threatens not only your own health, but also the health of those around you. It can weaken immune systems, trigger asthma, increase the risk of cancer, and even cause sudden death in young children. If you want a healthy home, take your butt outside.

2. Use non-toxic cleaners. Common household cleaners can increase the risk of cancer, infertility, infant death, miscarriage and learning disabilities. Clean your house the nontoxic way to make your home healthier. Use baking soda, vinegar, essential oils and good old-fashioned water to keep your house clean without the toxic effects of harsh chemical cleansers.

3. Skip the carpet. Carpet isn’t just a pain in the butt to clean, it’s also a potential health hazard. Your carpet may contain harsh synethetic compounds, including formaldehyde, which is a known carcinogen. Carpet will also collect large amounts of dust and mold, which may not be removed, even with regular vacuuming. Ideally, choose a healthier home by having hardwood or bamboo floors instead of carpet. Real floors also save energy; a broom is powered by elbow-grease, while a vacuum cleaner needs electricity.

4. Be cautious of lead paint. If your home has lead paint, Do NOT try to remove it yourself. Do, however, paint over it. Lead paint is a major cause of brain damage in young children, who may eat chips of paint and then suffer irreparable central nervous system damage. A healthier home would include sustainably sourced low-VOC paints, which are more expensive but significantly less toxic. Also be cautious with any sealants and treatments used to preserve paint.

5. Test for radon. The second leading cause of lung cancer, after cigarette smoke, is radon. This colorless, odorless gas gives you no warning signs until you develop cancer. Make your home healthier by testing your home for levels of radon gas. Test kits are available for as little as $15 to ensure that your home is free of this poisonous gas. If your home does contain radon, several methods can help to draw it out of your home.