I am 99% bacteria, 1% human

Sounds really creepy, but it’s true. And we count on all our little friends to keep us healthy, keeping our gastrointestinal tract functioning and absorbing minerals well, and producing the critical vitamin K that is so important to our lives. Vitamin K, made by the large intestine flora, is vital for synthesis of clotting factorsContinue reading “I am 99% bacteria, 1% human”

Don’t drive long-distances with grandpa if he has diabetes

The ultra-frequent pit stops will drive you nuts (even if he’s your beloved grandpa). Buy grandpa a plane ticket! Excessive thirst and urination signals uncontrolled diabetes mellitus, diabetic ketoacidosis or diabetes insipidus.(1) Urinalysis and blood testing are meant to detect the first two conditions.(2&3) When blood testing shows normal glucose levels and there is noContinue reading “Don’t drive long-distances with grandpa if he has diabetes”

Get an opthalmoscopic exam

A non-invasive, five- to 10-minute opthalmoscopic examination can reveal: Hypertension – Detected by swelling of the optic nerve and visual center of the retina can, hypertension is caused from narrowing arteries and amount of blood pumped by the heart.(2&3) If hypertension is not controlled it can lead to permanent damage to the optic nerve orContinue reading “Get an opthalmoscopic exam”

Walk for your memory

You may or may not remember last year’s landmark four-year study related to Alzheimer’s disease sponsored by the Italians. The study appeared in December’s issue of Neurology. I found a link to an article about it below. In summary it showed that elderly people (over 65) who regularly walk significantly lower risk of vascular dementia.(1)Continue reading “Walk for your memory”

Health Starts in The Gut

Going in with the gut, I’m led to deduce that health begins exactly there. The gut and other parts of the gastrointestinal system make up the basic conduit of nutrition.(1) Food eaten is broken down by the system into simpler substances, nutrients are absorbed and transported to cells, and then are metabolized for creation ofContinue reading “Health Starts in The Gut”

Brittle Bones of a Jedi Master

After leading the fight against the Galactic Alliance, Luke Skywalker might have found himself with a developed case of osteoporosis and kidney stones. That’s because space travel diminishes bone loss and a rise of calcium in the blood, according to NASA researchers (Hullander & Barry, 2001). The reason for the bone loss is weightlessness. WhenContinue reading “Brittle Bones of a Jedi Master”

Yes, I live in Arizona so I have a higher risk of melanoma

Of the three types of skin cancer, melanoma is the most serious. It affects the melanocytes, which produce the pigment melanin that gives skin its color. The cancerous melanocytes do not die when they should (apoptosis) and form a cancerous mass. Melanoma can show up in a mole or other pigmented tissues such as theContinue reading “Yes, I live in Arizona so I have a higher risk of melanoma”

A&P? Can’t I just memorize my vitamins?

If you just read the side panel of a Wheaties box while eating breakfast in the morning you’ll already know you need vitamins A, Bs, C, and E. The milk carton next to the cereal you know is a good source of calcium and vitamin D. Why should you know about anatomy and physiology? UnderstandingContinue reading “A&P? Can’t I just memorize my vitamins?”