Super Foods: What Are They? Know Their Health Benefits

Super foods, in general, are plant-derived foods that contain very high amounts of vitamins and minerals. Nonetheless, some fish and dairy products also make their way to the list. Nutritionists say super foods could be one of the ways to ward off cancer, maintain heart health and possibly prevent diabetes. This, in no sense, implies that super foods are a replacement for a healthy diet or compensation for a bad diet and unhealthy lifestyle choices. After all, there is unequivocal evidence that your health relies greatly on a healthy diet comprising the right amounts of a variety of nutrients.

Super foods: What to Eat and What Health Benefits They Offer

Here are the top three super foods with their evidence-based health benefits.

  1. Blueberries

These sweet berries with blue hues are rich in vitamins, (folate, vitamin C, vitamin B6, vitamin K) and have high amounts of dietary fiber. Also, they are loaded with health-promoting antioxidants. The role of fruits and vegetables in maintaining health and preventing diseases is undebatable.

A large number of studies have suggested a strong link between an increased consumption of blueberries and decreased risk of lifestyle disorders. For example, obesity, diabetes, and heart diseases. In fact, many health benefits of blueberries come from the antioxidant flavonoids Anthocyanins. Moreover, recent studies suggest blueberries could be a perfect super food to fight cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, and wrinkles.

The best ways to eat blueberries

Here are some simple ways you can include blueberries in your meals.

  • Use blueberries toppings on oatmeal, waffles, pancakes and yogurt.
  • Prepare a smoothie by mixing frozen berries, low-fat milk and yogurt.
  • Try some easy-to-prepare blueberry recipes. For example, blueberry almond bread and blueberry chia smoothies.
  1. Whole Grains And Beans

Whole grains and beans are a great way to add more fiber and proteins in your diet. They are also rich in essential vitamins and minerals. Note that a typical American diet contains aninsufficient quantity of a mineral manganese. When you prefer whole grains over the processed grains, you can reap many health benefits. For example, lowered blood cholesterol and risk of heart diseases, improved bowel habits and sugar control, and possible weight control. Also, the beans could be a safer and less expensive alternative to meat.

The best way to eat whole grains and beans

  • Eat whole grain bread or oatmeal for breakfast.
  • Prefer whole grains over processed grains wherever you can.
  1. Oily Fish

Oily fish like salmon, mackerel and sardines may help to prevent heart diseases, prostate cancer, and vision loss due to aging and dementia. They contain healthy amounts of protein, vitamin D, protein, vitamin B, and selenium. Moreover, the oily fish is enriched with a healthy fat called omega-3 fatty acids. Notably, salmon, mackerel, herring, lake trout, sardines and albacore tuna are rich in omega-3 fatty acids.

Studies suggest eating oily fish at least once a week may help to prevent heart diseases. The minerals and heart-healthy omega-3-fatty acids in oily fish can lower blood pressure and prevent fat accumulation in the arterial walls. Likewise, omega-3-fatty acids may also help to prevent memory problems in the later years of life.

The best ways to eat oily fish

  • Eat it with a toast and a side salad for a nutritious meal or roast with cruciferous vegetables.

The Top Three Foods you Should Avoid

In contrast to super foods, some foods are so bad that you should avoid them. If you cannot, consume them in a very little quantity and less often. Here some foods to avoid if you are aiming for a healthy life.

  • Added sugar does more harm than just bad teeth and added pounds. It is a well-established fact that excess sugar makes you fatter. But do you know it also increases the risk of other serious illnesses like diabetes and heart diseases? So, next time you order a smoothie, think again. Also, make sure to read the label on your favorite snacks. Stop drinking sweetened beverages and opt for unsweetened waters, teas, and sparkling beverages instead.
  • Potato chips. No doubt, the potato is a rich source of many nutrients. But products like chips or French fries are on the opposite side. The harms of these calorie-dense foods arise from different sources. For example, trans fats, cancer-causing chemicals, and high salt content. Instead, prepare boiled salted potatoes in place of the chips.
  • Processed meat. There is no denying that meat is a good source of vitamins, minerals, and protein. In essence, meat is a nutritious food. However, the WHO classifies processed meat at number one in the list of cancer-causing substances (carcinogens). Meaning, daily consumption could put you at a high risk for cancer. Note that other carcinogens like tobacco and alcohol also fall in the same group. What can you do? Eat fresh meat instead of processed.

The Bottom Line

No doubt, super foods are a great way to potentially prevent or manage some common health problems. Yet, they cannot replace a balanced diet. You should consider super foods as a part of a healthy diet, not an entire diet in itself.

Moreover, not each super food is good for everyone. For this reason, try one at a time and observe the benefits. If you feel that the results are good, include them in your diet.

Also, consult your doctor if you:

  • Are pregnant or breastfeeding.
  • Have a chronic illness and take prescription medication to treat it. Remember some foods or super foods may interact with the medications you take.

Want to Know More?

To learn more about the health benefits of super foods, visit www.FindaTopDoc.com. Also, gain unlimited access to a myriad of other benefits. Readers can find evidence-based health information with just a click. Driven by the aim to provide authentic information about diseases, drugs, supplements, medical procedures, and lifestyle tips to all its visitors, FindaTopDoc.com and CEO Anthony Casimano allow visitors to read about the best doctors locally. Readers can choose the doctor that best meets their unique health needs, and request to schedule an appointment instantly.

Low physical activity increases risk of bladder, kidney cancer

A new study shows that a chronic lack of physical activity can drastically increase the chance of developing cancer in the bladder and kidneys, and it suggests that engaging in more physical activity may reduce this risk.
[man lounging on sofa]

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report that, every year, almost 57,000 adults have kidney and renal pelvis cancers in the United States. Additionally, almost 14,000 people per year die from these cancers.

Bladder cancer is also widespread. According to the CDC, around 71,000U.S. individuals developed bladder cancer in 2013, and almost 16,000 people died as a result.

Read more at: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/317648.php

Heart Disease Numbers: What They Mean and How to Reduce the Risk

tumblr_n3b006op1g1rd1n1oo1_r1_1280Heart disease is a major public health problem across the globe. It is a major cause of disability, loss of productive life years, and death. The good news is, you may be able to prevent it by making some simple lifestyle changes.

What Is Heart Disease?

In fact, heart disease is a broad term. It includes any disorder that affects normal heart functions. Since it is a major organ, its disorder is one of the major causes of death. This may occur if you do not get prompt treatment. Some common forms include narrowed blood vessels (inside the heart) and abnormal heart rhythms. Also, it includes structural defects that are present right after your birth. These are called congenital heart defects.

Heart Disease Numbers Indicate Serious Health Problem

Heart disease and heart attack threaten to kill more people than any other preventable disorder. With that being said, you can control it. But the rising heart disease numbers only indicate deteriorating health of people on a global level.

Regrettably, it has also plagued the lives of a significant number of American people. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) data on heart disease numbers shows it is the cause for 1 out of every four deaths. Both men and women have the same risk. Nevertheless, many people wrongly call it a man’s disease.

Currently, 28.4 million US adults are living with heart disease.

It is also a major cause of economic burden. According to the American Heart Association (AHA), it costs the US around $315 billion every year. Sadly, health expenses have been rising each year.

Know the Basics of Heart Disease: What Are They?

  • Coronary heart disease (CHD): The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute defines CHD as the deposition off atty substances on the inner wall of the arteries. These arteries are present in the heart. Therefore, when the blood flow through them is restricted, the heart muscles do not get enough blood supply. As a result, it may lead to other conditions. Most notably, chest pain (angina) and heart attack.
  • Angina: It is not a disease in itself. Rather, it is a symptom of an underlying problem. Angina on its own is not fatal. But, if you ignore it time and again, it can be potentially dangerous. Stats suggest almost 7 million Americans have angina.
  • Heart attack: It is a more serious complication that results due to an ongoing CHD. When a section of the heart does not get sufficient oxygen, the affected tissue may die. Then, scar tissues It is a medical emergency and failure to get treatment right away may lead to death. In fact, 15% of heart attack patients will eventually die as a result of the complications. It affects about 735,000 Americans each year.
  • Stroke: Also known as a brain attack, it is not essentially heart disease. Yet, both have many common causes and preventive measures. A stroke occurs when your brain does not get enough oxygen. It can be due to narrowing of the arteries that supply the brain. Alternately, bleeding in those arteries can also cause it. In any case, it is a medical emergency. It is responsible for 1 out of every 20 deaths. The annual economic burden of stroke is $33 billion. Survivors who are above 65 years have a high risk of long-term disability.

What Are Heart Disease Risk Factors?

The common heart disease risk factors include:

  • Smoking and heavy drinking
  • Family history
  • High-fat diet
  • Obesity
  • Sedentary lifestyle
  • Mental stress
  • Diabetes

What You Can Do To Control Heart Disease

To prevent heart disease, you may consider the following measures. That way, you will not only be able to control heart disease, but also lower the risk of stroke.

  • Stop smoking if you smoke. Do not start if you have not started yet. If you cannot quit on your own, seek professional help.
  • Maintain healthy blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Also, keep sugar levels in control.
  • Stay active. Aim for moderate intensity activity at least 5 days a week.
  • Cut down sodium intake
  • Maintain a healthy BMI: Keep your weight in check.
  • Drink in moderation, if you have to.
  • Learn to manage stress. Talk to your doctor about the stress management techniques. For example, yoga, meditation, and others.
  • Follow a healthy diet. Make sure to include whole grains, low-fat milk products, and protein lean meats, poultry, and seafood. Also eat more nuts, seeds, beans, and peas.

Points to Know

  • You can reduce the number of deaths from heart disease. That is when you recognize the warning signs. They include chest pain that radiates to the shoulder, neck, or jaw and breathing difficulties. Some may have other signs too. For example, nausea and vomiting, sweating, and abnormal heartbeat. If you have any of these signs, get to the emergency room right away.
  • The key heart disease risk factors are high blood pressure, high blood cholesterol levels, and smoking. According to the CDC, one or more risk factors are present in 47% of Americans. You can control all these with some lifestyle tweaks.
  • As a matter of fact, you will not be able to prevent congenital heart defects. But you can ask your doctor about some procedures or corrective surgery.

Want To Know More?

To learn more about heart disease, visit www.FindaTopDoc.com. Also, gain unlimited access to a myriad of other benefits. Readers can find evidence-based health information with just a click. Driven by the aim to provide authentic information about diseases, drugs, supplements, medical procedures, and lifestyle tips to all its visitors, FindaTopDoc.com and CEO Anthony Casimano allow visitors to read about the best doctors locally. Readers can choose the doctor that best meets their unique health needs, and request to schedule an appointment instantly.

Depression Statistics: Are We Really Happy?

Maybe we are not happy. At least, the increasing rates of depression do not indicate so. Quite understandably, America ranked 14th in the World Happiness Report 2017. While depression is not the only reason for this, the role of mental health in the overall happiness score cannot be ruled out. In fact, depression statistics are a warning sign for clinicians and patients, as well as health policymakers.

Depression or major depressive disorder (MDD) is a potentially serious medical condition. Continuous low moods, physiological changes, and suicidal thoughts are the hallmarks of this debilitating illness. Besides, it carries a substantial risk of other negative health outcomes. For example, heart diseases, drug abuse, and other mental illnesses.

6 Things You Should Know About Depression Statistics inthe US

  1. Depression is among the most prevalent mental disorders in the US. In 2015, approximately 3 million US adolescents of the ages 12 to 17 years had one or more episodes of MDD. As a matter of fact, this is equivalent to 12.5% of the US adolescent population. This is according to the National Institute of Mental Health. In the same year, approximately 10.3 million US adults of the ages 18 or more years had MDD. In fact, it was the reason for severe impairment in these patients. This is equivalent to 4.3% of all U.S. adults.
  2. In comparison to men, women have twice the risk of developing symptoms of depression. Also, a significant fraction of women is more likely to develop it after having a baby.
  3. The risk peaks through ages 45 to 64. In fact, one episode of MDD significantly increases the risk of having another episode within a short time.
  4. Depression and its effects cost the US $210 billion per year. Individuals with depression spend almost double the amount of money for health services than those without its diagnosis.
  5. Only half of the individuals with MDD receive a treatment for it. Among them, only 20% get the treatment that complies with current practice guidelines of the American Psychiatric Association (APA)
  6. The swelling drug market correlates with depression statistics. According to a 2017 report by Variant Market Research, the total market value of antidepressant drugs will reach $18 billion by 2024. This might be a healthy growth for drug manufacturers. Nevertheless, it does not indicate any significant improvement in mental health status.

Depression Statistics:  What You Can Do

After reading these scary depression statistics, you might be worrying about this looming public health issue. And this is quite understandable.

But, you can take certain steps now. That way, you might be able to optimize treatment outcomes.

  • It is treatable. This is by far the best news if you or anyone in your family is struggling with it. The right combination of medications and psychotherapy can bring them back to themselves. There are a variety of medications that the US FDA has approved for treating it. In any case, since it is unique to each individual, what works for you may be different for anybody else and vice versa. The doctors often use a trial and error approach during the course of treatment. In addition, psychotherapy, also called talk therapy, can give you certain skills to handle stressful situations better.

Pro-tip: The US FDA recommends family members to watch the patient closely. This is more important during the first few weeks after starting a medication. Also, individuals under 25 years need extra special care.

  • Certain factors increase the risk of depression. Take special care if you have a history of depression in your family. Also, if you are a female or have just delivered a baby, you are more likely to experience the symptoms.

Watch for the 10 telltale signs that may include:

  1. Feeling sad and empty for most days of the week
  2. A negative outlook towards life in almost every aspect
  3. Hopelessness and helplessness
  4. Extreme restlessness and irritability
  5. Inability to gain pleasure from the activities that were once rejoiced
  6. Problems with sleep, focus, or even memory
  7. Excessive or too little sleep
  8. Loss or gain of weight without any major physical illness
  9. Suicidal thoughts and attempts
  10. Generalized pain in the absence of any physical cause

Pro-tip: If one or more of these symptoms linger for more than 14 days on a continuous basis, seek immediate medical help. Remember that feeling low during certain times in life is normal. But if it causes significant problems or persists, you should talk to your doctor.

  • There are different types of depression. The most common ones are persistent depressive disorder (PDD or dysthymia), psychotic depression, and perinatal depression (baby blues). Moreover, some patients may also have seasonal affective disorder (SAD) or depression associated with bipolar disorder. The severity of the symptoms varies depending on the type.

Pro-tip: The classical symptoms are invariably present in all these types. Moreover, the treatment approach is also similar.

  • Depression may lead to suicide. This is the most terrifying and damaging effect one could imagine. Regrettably, some medications may also lead to the same fate. This is the reason why experts recommend a “black box” warning on each antidepressant. American men are four times more likely to commit successful suicide compared to the women. This is according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Pro-tip: Watch for the warning signs of suicide in your loved ones. Take extra care if they already have a diagnosis of depression or are taking medications for it.

  1. Extreme mood swings or violent behavior
  2. Social isolation and withdrawal
  3. Showing a hatred towards life or what’s going on. They may unknowingly talk about it with their friends or family members
  4. Signs of substance or alcohol abuse

Want To Know More?

To learn more about depression, visit http://www.FindaTopDoc.com. Also, gain unlimited access to a myriad of other benefits. Readers can find evidence-based health information with just a click. Driven by the aim to provide authentic information about diseases, drugs, supplements, medical procedures, and lifestyle tips to all its visitors, FindaTopDoc.com and CEO Anthony Casimano allow visitors to read about the best doctors locally. Readers can choose the doctor that best meets their unique health needs, and request to schedule an appointment instantly.

The Ten Commandments of Weight Loss and Maintenance

The-Ten-Commandments-of-Weight-Loss-and-Maintenance_article_mainWeight loss! It’s the easiest and hardest thing to do. It’s easy, because if you consistently eat fewer calories than you burn off, you will lose weight. It’s hard, because who wants to eat less or has time to exercise more?

With this in mind, I am going to share with you some helpful guidelines I refer to as the Ten Commandments of Weight Loss and Maintenance!

1. Thou Shall Not Drink Any Liquids Containing Calories

Liquids do not fill you up, yet they can be calorically quite “expensive.” Yes, this includes alcohol. You may have to choose which is more important to you as you only have so many calories in your “bank” to spend each day. The only exception might be unsweetened almond milk or soymilk. These have fewer calories than skim or non-fat milk and much less sugar. Equally important is that they contain healthy fats (mono and poly unsaturated), which are beneficial for good health.

Read the rest of the list at: findatopdoc.com/Diet-and-Nutrition/The-Ten-Commandments-of-Weight-Loss-and-Maintenance

Document Security in Healthcare: How Important Is It

Due to stringent laws protecting sensitive medical information, hospitals and other healthcare providers are scrambling to address their security shortfalls as well. HIPAA, HITECH, and other regulations have forced organizations everywhere to reexamine their healthcare document management and security measures. Failure to safeguard Protected Health Information (PHI) could result in being listed on the infamous data breach “wall of shame.”

But even the most secure fortress has internal security threats. Printers and queues should be configured to prevent unauthorized users from viewing queued print jobs. Enterprise output management software simplifies configuration tasks while providing administrators powerful audit tools to detect and deter unauthorized document access. The saying “trust but verify” definitely applies to healthcare information.

 

DocumentSecurity

Perhaps the easiest document to protect is the one never printed in the first place. Instead of distributing a print job to a user’s nearest printer, a company can distribute access to a protected electronic copy via an email link. By requiring users to “view first then print” or “view instead of print,” IT organizations can electronically track document access while reducing the cost of paper and other consumables.

Breaches of privacy and confidentiality not only may affect a person’s dignity, but can cause harm. When personally identifiable health information, for example, is disclosed to an employer, insurer, or family member, it can result in stigma, embarrassment, and discrimination. Thus, without some assurance of privacy, people may be reluctant to provide candid and complete disclosures of sensitive information even to their physicians. Ensuring privacy can promote more effective communication between physician and patient, which is essential for quality of care, enhanced autonomy, and preventing economic harm, embarrassment, and discrimination. However, it should also be noted that perceptions of privacy vary among individuals and various groups. Data that are considered intensely private by one person may not be by others.

American society places a high value on individual rights, personal choice, and a private sphere protected from intrusion. Medical records can include some of the most intimate details about a person’s life. They document a patient’s physical and mental health, and can include information on social behaviors, personal relationships, and financial status. Accordingly, surveys show that medical privacy is a major concern for many Americans.

In a 1999 survey of consumer attitudes toward health privacy, three out of four people reported that they had significant concerns about the privacy and confidentiality of their medical records. In a more recent survey, conducted in 2005 after the implementation of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) Privacy Rule, 67 percent of respondents still said they were concerned about the privacy of their medical records, suggesting that the Privacy Rule had not effectively alleviated public concern about health privacy. Ethnic and racial minorities showed the greatest concern among the respondents. Moreover, the survey showed that many consumers were unfamiliar with the HIPAA privacy protections. Only 59 percent of respondents recalled receiving a HIPAA privacy notice, and only 27 percent believed they had more rights than they had before receiving the notice. One out of eight respondents also admitted to engaging in behaviors intended to protect their privacy, even at the expense of risking dangerous health effects. These behaviors included lying to their doctors about symptoms or behaviors, refusing to provide information or providing inaccurate information, paying out of pocket for care that is covered by insurance, and avoiding care altogether.

Document security measures are no longer a luxury, but a necessity. Leveraging the secure printing capabilities of a true enterprise-class output management solution can help healthcare providers safeguard their patients’ PHI… and their own reputations.

Founding Partner of FindaTopDoc.com