Why is it that the gluten-free food industry has grown at a compounded annual rate of almost 30 percent? Probably because 1 in 133 persons is now being diagnosed with a condition known as Celiac Disease. Patients with Celiac Disease are unable to digest a protein called gluten, which is found in certain grains, namely wheat, barley and rye.
Diane Dettman, with Landings Credit Union, Linda Costello, with Cherry Creek Mortgage Co., Inc., Lynn Hennessy, with State Farm Insurance, Agnes Oblas, with New Paths to Healthcare LLC, and Georgiann Serpe, owner of K Bella Salon and Spa exchange gifts at the Women in Business Holiday Luncheon.
You know that blood is red and life ceases if the body is deprived of it. You know too that life also depends on oxygen. The oxygen you breathe in with each breath latches on to the hemoglobin molecule of each red blood cell as it circulates through your lung tissue. Your circulatory system then becomes the transport mechanism by which the enriched blood goes immediately to the heart from whence it is forcefully pumped through the rest of the body. You know that blood also contains white cells that are the blood components responsible for preventing us from succumbing to infection.
For people who need to lose weight, do sugar substitutes really help? Do people with diabetes benefit by substituting products made with Sweet‘N Low, Splenda, or NutraSweet in their diet? How about our children growing up ingesting these sugar substitutes; is there any concern for their future health?
If there are eight women reading this article, one of you will develop breast cancer by the age of 80. Or if there are 48,222 of us women in Ahwatukee (ZIP codes 85044, 85048, 85045), 5,787 have already or will have developed breast cancer before the age of 80; a fairly sobering thought. Equally sobering is this: if there are 48,960 men in Ahwatukee, a little less than 1 percent or 490 will develop breast cancer. (Demographic statistics came from HOMES.POINT2.com).
Women are different from men. Physiologically speaking, hormonal differences begin at conception; sex hormones influence physiologic development through all ages from infancy, puberty, the reproductive years, and continuing for longevity. A man and a woman can both become body builders, but the differences in each one’s musculature, skeletal physiology or neurologic physiology will remain different. The list of physiologic differences can go on, but one of the most interesting new bits of knowledge is the greater understanding that even cardiovascular (having to do with the heart and blood vessels) physiology is different between the male and the female of our species.
Once again, triple-digit temperatures surround us and the hotter we get, the thirstier we feel. “Don’t get dehydrated” is as commonly heard here in Arizona as “it’s a dry heat” so everywhere you go you see people with their water bottles. Which is a good thing, don’t get me wrong. But just like most things that are good for us, did you know that too much water could turn into a bad thing? Over-hydration is as potentially a life-threatening situation as is under-hydration. Now the average Joe or Jane is not risking anything as they down their requisite number of ounces of water during the day. It’s the athletes attempting to maintain their work-out regimens in the heat of the day that are a concern, or workers required to carry out their duties in the heat of the day. Well intentioned as it may be, as these individuals attempt to avoid dehydration, they may in fact end up drinking too much water and slip into over-hydration. Too much water could be considered a poison. No kidding; it does happen.
The opening lines of “It’s For You,” by Douglas Penick, Shambala Sun, May, 2014, caught my attention: “bad news can come to feel a little like falling in love.” In this case, the author received a call from his physician informing him that he had cancer. So what is this about falling in love? What is there to love about learning that one has a life threatening disease?
To paraphrase Sarah Lee, nobody doesn’t like peanut butter. Unless you are a poor unfortunate soul who is allergic to peanuts. For now, let’s go with the joy of eating peanuts and especially the awesome joy of peanut butter.
Physician: “OK, Mr. Jones, your cholesterol and blood pressures are too high. You need to take these medicines and get some exercise. Come back in a few months. Any questions? Good! Stop at the front desk to get scheduled.”
What would you think if you woke one morning and you noticed in the mirror that half of your face looked strange? By strange, I mean you couldn’t blink one eye and your lips, mouth and tongue didn’t move properly. In short, one side of your face was paralyzed. Would you be concerned that you were having a stroke? Most people would naturally be very scared and concerned that a stroke was indeed occurring.
Every cell in the body continually carries out millions of biochemical processes requiring oxygen. By-products of this cellular metabolic process are unstable electrons called oxidants or “free radicals.” Unfortunately, these free radicals are not harmless. Their chief danger comes from the damage they incur upon cellular structures or DNA. ANTI-oxidants reduce the effects of dangerous oxidants by binding with them, thereby, decreasing their destructive power. Food sources of antioxidants include those with high levels of vitamin A, C, E, and beta-carotene, such as spinach and liver. Anti-oxidants are thought to have a role in slowing the aging process, preventing heart disease, and protecting against the development of cancers.
Consider the following very typical scenario: You are one of the growing numbers of individuals who takes an aspirin every day because of its cardio protective properties on the advice of a health care provider. Then, one day you sprain your ankle and you consider taking a couple of over-the-counter ibuprofen two or three times a day for a few days for its anti-inflammatory effects. Seems harmless enough, but is it? Is it advisable to be taking aspirin and ibuprofen simultaneously?
As a mental health therapist it has been my privilege to work with some veterans of the Vietnam, Gulf, Iraq, and Afghanistan wars. Of course, from the news media, TV, and Internet, we know of their sacrifices and their willingness to risk their lives for their country. Since 9/11 hundreds of thousands have served, and many have paid with their lives or with serious life altering injuries. Other wounds equally serious, such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), are less visible. About 20 percent of all those who have served in combat suffer from these disorders. PTSD and/or TBI can result in acute anxiety, depression, and/or cognitive impairment, which can impede work and the formation of healthy relationships that most of us take for granted.
What is hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c)? Hemoglobin is found in red blood cells and is commonly known as the element that carries oxygen. But it does something else: it combines with some of the sugar (glucose) circulating in the blood stream to become glycohemoglobin. The amount of glucose that combines with the hemoglobin is directly proportional to the total amount of glucose circulating. Since the average life span of a single red blood cell is three months, it stands to reason that measuring the amount of glycohemoglobin would give a good approximation of the average blood sugar level of the previous three months.
Why is it that from 2004 to 2010, the gluten-free food industry has grown at a compounded annual rate of almost 30 percent? Probably because 1 in 133 persons is now being diagnosed with a condition known as celiac disease. Patients with celiac disease are unable to tolerate a protein called gluten, which is found in the grains wheat, barley and rye. The inability to digest these grains when eaten leads to inflammation of the small intestines manifested by destruction of microscopic hairs, called “villi,” lining the small intestines. Without these villi, the patient is unable to absorb vitamins, minerals, and other vital nutrients, and malnutrition and anemia ensue. Young children who develop celiac disease are particularly vulnerable as their growth and normal development can be stunted.