Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Splurging over the holiday season

Holiday parties and temptations are everywhere you look and it’s only a matter of time before the opportunity stares you in the face. You know it’s going to happen, so the best defense is a great offense. Be prepared and take action to continue to support your body and health through the holidays.

Here a ways to help your body stay on track:

Stay hydrated. Always drink a glass of water with each glass of alcohol and limit alcohol intake. Alcohol dehydrates the body and kills liver cells. Eat healthy foods. Focus on eating lighter and healthier the day of a holiday party. Be discriminating with your splurges – lean into homemade treats to avoid preservatives, chemicals and other additives that don't offer any benefits. Yet keep in mind the amount of butter or shortening that went in to making that visually appealing dessert.

You know the splurge is coming, embrace it rather than worrying about it, just go and enjoy (within in reason of course) – ’tis the season. Remember, after your through eating your body continues to break down all that
mish-mosh of food. Your liver, gall bladder, pancreas and kidneys will be suffering for a much longer time than it took for you to eat the food!

Increasing water intake will help move the sodium out of your system. To de-toxify the body: try my personal favorite recipe: 1 cucumber, 5 celery stalks and a handful of kale, spinach, ice cubes, lemon and parsley. If you don’t have a juicer, use a blender.  This concoction will cleanse the body. It is loaded with nutrients and will help to maintain overall ph. 

After the holiday season, focus on eating lighter such as salads, veggies, soups. Dandelion and mustard greens will de-toxify the body. Lastly, get moving. Do something physical get your heart pumping and lose some of those extra fat calories your body stored.

Balance is the key to a healthy body.

Trisha M. Pacenti RN, BSN

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Winter weather and your health

Why is it important to dress accordingly? Simply wearing a hat on your head will keep you warm as most of your body heat escapes through the top of your head. Cold air is an irritant to mucous linings. When cold air irritates the mucous lining there is an increase of mucus secretion. Runny nose and phlegm are the result of an irritated mucous lining. This compromise within the mucous lining places you at risk for lower and upper respiratory illness.

Cold air also constricts the blood vessels. When blood vessels constrict, the heart will beat harder and faster to maintain blood flow throughout the body. As a result blood pressure increases, a blood clot may form and the risk for stroke increases. This can be devastating to individuals who have a cardiac history, such as high blood pressure or cardiac stents. Diabetics are also vulnerable to cold air crisis'. Blood vessels in diabetes are damaged due to the break down of the interior lining of the blood vessel wall. People with asthma are at risk. The bronchial tree in asthma is irritated and inflamed with increased fluid production. The sudden swallow of cold air could trigger a respiratory constriction.

Going from a warm home to the cold outside is just enough to create a health problem. The sudden extreme flip-flop in temperature is a shock to the human body. Take caution and dress to prevent cold air health crisis.

Good health,
Trisha M. Pacenti RN,BSN

Friday, December 9, 2011

How are Diabetes and Stroke Related?

Undiagnosed, untreated and/or poorly controlled diabetes causes damage to both large and small blood vessels. This damage then increases your risk for having a stroke, a poor prognosis, a longer recovery period and sets you up for additional complications.

Excess sugars circulating in the blood stream that occur in diabetes adhere to red blood cells and travel everywhere blood is circulated. From your feet to the top of your head and everything in between. This excess sugar irritates blood vessel linings causing scarring. This scarring acts as a road block and narrows the passage of free flowing blood. The narrowed blood vessel can now be blocked by a blood clot. This reaction also will create high blood pressure. Blood pressure is the force exerted by the heart within your vascular system. And, having high cholesterol just aggravates the situation more. These 3 conditions, diabetes, high b/p, and high lipids are common in diabetes and all 3 contribute to blood vessel damage.

The risk of diabetes and stroke can be lowered by adopting  healthy eating habits, avoid smoking, exercising and regular visits to your doctor. If diagnosed with high b/p, diabetes or high cholesterol, treating these conditions early and aggressively will greatly reduce your risk of suffering from a stroke. If you have a family history of these conditions, you are already at risk. Be pro-active and choose a healthy lifestyle.

Good Health,
Trisha M. Pacenti RN,BSN