What Can Double or Triple the Risk of DVT’s for Women?

July 19, 2011 by  
Filed under At Home, At Work, featured, Health, Natural Medicine, Travel

The risk of blood clots and DVT’s are well publicized in relation to air travel, but what you may not be aware of is that just prolonged sitting around at home or the office can also be potentially life threatening – particularly for women.

New research published in the British Medical Journal (BMJ) shows that although the greatest risk factor for deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is surgery, most people associate it with long-haul flights and the Pill but they could be tragically mistaken. The amount of time spent sitting every day – wherever you are – means you could be putting yourself at risk of developing potentially life-threatening blood clots.

This study was done in the USA, and found that women who sat for a long time every day had double or even triple the risk of a dangerous blood clot in the lungs.
While the women most at risk had sat for more than 41 hours a week (on top of their work hours), the research is the first to prove a sedentary lifestyle increases the dangers.

DVT is caused when the wall of a blood vessel is damaged through injury, such as a broken bone or surgery, or if the blood clots more easily than normal as a result of medication or genetics. They fact here though is that it can also be triggered by the blood flow slowing down considerably — such as when you’re immobile for a long time through lying or sitting down.

What Can Help?
First of all realistically monitor how much time you do spend sitting down and reduce it in simple ways. First of all bin the TV remote and get up to change channels, if you work at a desk or on a computer get up every hour and just move around for five minutes. If you have the choice of stairs or a lift, use the stairs for at least part of the way.

When travelling try to drive no more than two hours without a break, even if you just pull into a car park and walk round it for a few minutes. By air, it is not now frowned on to get up and walk round the plane, though your way may not always be clear it is worth the effort to avoid the duty free carts or if stuck in your seat try tensing and releasing the muscles in your buttocks, legs and feet. By curling or pressing the toes down, which causes the muscles to contract and squeeze on the leg veins, helps to pump the blood along. Another way to help move blood to the heart is to wear compression stockings, which put gentle pressure on the leg muscles as studies in healthy people have shown that wearing compression stockings minimizes the risk of developing DVT after long flights. Avoid socks, or knee highs for women that have very tight elastic bands at the top and do not sit with your legs crossed for long periods of time, which constricts the veins.

Keep the fluid flowing:
Sorry, not alcohol but you need to drink plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration as this causes blood vessels to narrow and blood to thicken, increasing the risk for DVT. Reducing alcohol and coffee consumption, which both contribute to dehydration, is also recommended.

If water is not your thing there is also a new fruit juice which has been proven to benefit blood circulation. Sirco™contains a tasteless tomato extract, Fruitflow®, that has been scientifically proven to have heart and circulation health benefits because in several clinical trials it has been shown to help maintain a healthy blood circulation by preventing the “clumping” of blood platelets which can lead to blood clots. The blood platelet smoothing action of Sirco™ takes effect within 1 ½ to 3 hours from drinking it and lasts up to 18 hours and is suggested as a natural alternative to a daily aspirin that many people take for this action. It fits well into the healthy Mediterranean diet eithos and comes in two 100% pure fruit juices mixes; Pomegranate/Orange and Blueberry/Apple.

You should find it in your supermarket or local health store or go to www.sircoheart.com

How Dehydration Can Affect Allergies – 6 Simple Ways to Avoid It

If what summer means to you is stocking up on giant boxes of tissues and avoiding going out of doors, then there is a hidden factor that you may not be aware of. It seems that many allergy sufferers are also dehydrated, so that no matter how much water they drink they suffer from dry skin and a parched mouth.

Generally we are dehydrated as a nation, despite all those water bottles so ostentatiously displayed on desks and in gym bags. Studies estimate that 75% of us are prone to the ill health effects associated with chronic dehydration,. But what has that to do with your allergies? Well, allergies are caused by a histamine reaction in the bodyand histamine is an important neurotransmitter that primarily regulates thirst mechanism for increased water intake. It also establishes a system of water rationing for the available water in the drought-stricken body.”

When the body is dehydrated, histamine production increases significantly as its primary job is to make sure that the available water in the body is preserved for the most vital functions. It is the ‘drought mechanism’ if you like, and it creates a chain of events that affects numerous functions in the body, including the suppression of antibody production. This means that the body will simply not be as well equipped to deal with unhealthy invaders, such as pollen and other antigens.

That’s why during summer, when pollen season is in full swing, our eyes are invaded with the pollen agents, and the dehydrated body lacks the antibodies to adequately neutralize the pollen. So in response, the tear-producing glands of the eyes work overtime to wash the pollen away from the delicate membranes.

The histamine reaction and suppression of antibodies are just two of the many ways the body adapts to dehydration and although dehydration is not the only cause of allergies, it can be the primary cause. And the good news is that you can easily remedy it.

It can take time to fully rehydrate your body, but keep going as in the beginning a parched body – like dry ground – does not absorb all the water but it just runs out and away. It may seem like you are forever running to the loo in the early stages, but be persistent with your water intake and this will regulate as your starts to absorb and utilize the water better at the cellular level.

Top Water Retention Tips
1. Drink water – obvious but true – and plain, not carbonated. Not soft drinks or teas and coffees, but plain water.

2. Check the amount you drink, and the recommendation to rehydrate a dehydrated body, which is at least 1.5-2litres a day and during exercise or hot weather, you should increase your water intake significantly.

3. Don’t guess, but measure and record your water intake and that may be easier by setting out a number of bottles a day, or using a litre measuring jug and keeping track of how often you fill it. .

4. Filter your drinking water at source, at the tap, or in a filter jug or use reputable bottled water from a guaranteed source.

5. Little and often is best so make sure you drink regularly throughout the day as your body can only absorb about 12 to 16 ounces of water a time. The most important time to drink water is first thing in the morning so drink a large glass then, and add some fresh lemon juice to a detox start to the day. After breakfast have another large glass and try not to drink with meals, but in between so that you do not to dilute your digestive juices.

6. Unless you have high blood pressure, it can also help to add sea salt to drinking water because your more frequent urination means you are losing sodium. Not processed salt, and about a quarter teaspoon per litre will be plenty.. Salt itself is a natural antihistamine and if you add in a multimineral supplement then you will ensure proper electrolyte balance.

Why ‘Exercise’ May Not Be The Answer

As someone to whom the word exercise brings on a strong sense of faintness, unless it is dancing, walking or chasing the cat round the room, there is a case to be made apparently for reassessing what we think of as beneficial exercise.

The idea that exercise is good for us is constantly pummeled into our brains by the medical community, by health coaches and by the mass media – and indeed by my good self. Now it seems that while certain types of exercise can certainly be beneficial in context, placing too much emphasis on formal exercise may be highlighting the wrong issue and contributing to long term health problems–because it`s movement rather than exercise that has the most dramatic impact on our health.

Let me ask you a question: who is more sedentary, the person who exercises for one hour several times per week or the one who never exercises at all? You are all probably chorusing that of course it must be the second person, but it may not be the case at all when other factors are taken into account.

It is more important how much you move during your everyday life than how often you exercise. Why is that? Because how much time you spend sitting adversely affects your health far more than how much time you spend doing formal exercise. If you spend several hours a day sitting (in front of the tv, at a desk, commuting, at restaurants and so on), it can negatively impact your health–even if you exercise regularly. Basically, regular exercise is not enough to counteract an otherwise sedentary lifestyle.

5 Simple Changes To Help You Get Moving
There has been an enormous shift in how sedentary our lives are. We once had a lifestyle that included plenty of movement but the last 20-30 years has seen us shift so that the majority of our day is spent sitting down. Desk work is far more common than it used to be; commuting for at least an hour every day is not uncommon; and activities that used to require movement now require much less of it. Think how much bending and stretching was involved in washing clothes for instance which machines now have mostly taken away from us.

So instead of going to the gym, you just need to incorporate more daily movement and it is much easier than you think. Try some, or all, of these ideas:

1. Get a portable phone and walk round while you talk. If you have a fixed phone then stand up and talk and shift your weight from foot to foot.
2. At work make sure you take frequent breaks to just walk down the corridor, get some water, or walk up and down the stairs.
3. Watching TV all night? Don’t sit there during the commercial breaks and try to get up and walk around for about five minutes during each hour..
4. Wherever you can, don’t use a lift or elevator in a store or at a station but use the stairs instead. .
5. At the supermarket, don’t park as near to the door as you can, but aim for the very furthest spot away from the entrance. It’s a small thing, but can make a big difference to your overall movement.

What you are aiming for is to be unconsciously moving more instead of unconsciously sitting more–and you will both look and feel better as a result.

Keep Mobile Calls To A Minimum to minimise radiation risk

It is a rare person these days who does not have a mobile – if only for emergencies – and among the young they are practically an extended limb. The health risks of mobiles has been flagged up before, but a new study raises new concerns, particularly related to the length of time you are on the phone.

For several years, doctors, scientists and activists have been raising concerns about the possible connection between cell phones and brain cancer and recent research by scientists at NIH and the U.S. Department of Energy conclusively determined that a cell phone’s electromagnetic field can indeed cause changes in brain activity – and not in a good way.

Brain activity means that the cells are using glucose to create energy and a test group of 45 individuals who were on their mobile phones for 50 minutes had ‘significantly higher’ brain activity in the area closest to the telephone antenna. After this period the emitted radiation from the phone increases the activity in your brain cells and causes biological changes. The study has also raised the concern that if acute cell phone radiation is impacting glucose in the brain, an established marker of brain activity, might it also be impacting neurotransmitters and other brain biochemistry?

We know that increased glucose also occurs with infections and other inflammatory processes, and leads to the production of potentially damaging reactive oxygen radicals that can alter the ways that cells and genes work. The researchers called for a better understanding of how radiofrequency radiation might contribute to increased risk for brain tumours as well as other alterations in brain functions.

How to minimise radiation from your phone:
There are some very simple ways to reduce your exposure to cell phone radiation:

1 Use a wired headset instead of holding the phone to your ear or use the loudspeaker as both these will keep the antenna far away from your skull.

2 Get used to texting as also keeps the handset away from your brain, reducing the radiation risk.

3 Don’t use your cell phone as an alarm clock or ‘reminder’ as you will probably need to keep it close to your head and even when it’s not taking calls there’s still radiation being emitted.

4 Don’t carry your phone in your pocket as there’s preliminary research to indicate that men who carry a phone in their pocket all day could be putting their fertility at risk,

5 Use a radiation-blocking case

6 Use a radiation protector that can be fitted directly to your phone as a shield

If all these methods are employed you can reduce cell phone radiation by two-thirds.

The Practical Benefits of Tai Chi for Health and Circulation

January 31, 2011 by  
Filed under At Home, At Work, Health

The latest guidelines for preventing falls in the elderly in the USA have urged health professionals to look at interventions including exercise such as Tai Chi for balance, gait and strength training. With NHS treatment costs for falls coming in at £4.6m a day it could certainly save precious resources, and you could improve your own health in a very enjoyable way. I have often mentioned various health benefits of Tai Chi, and these usually come from research sources, so I thought it would be more helpful to hear from a practitioner on what they see as the real gains.

Jon Wallwork had suffered a spinal injury and was left with painful sciatica. Regular, dedicated practice over several months saw the sciatica diminish and within a year the condition had normalised (much to the surprise of the orthopaedic surgeon). He teaches in London and for P&O on some of their cruises and he is convinced of the health gains that can come from Tai Chi – whatever your age.

“It’s a very common perception that the practice of Tai Chi will lead you through moving meditation to this state of nirvana, this freedom from suffering. Well, dependent on your intention, attitude and goals it may do but there are real, practical benefits that have a more immediate relevance for anyone interested in maintaining a degree of good health and fitness whatever their age.

• Good posture arises in the lower back and spreads downwards to the legs through the pelvis and upwards to the head, through the spine and shoulders. Good posture depends upon good muscle tone in the centre of your body and exercises in Tai Chi training will help you develop such muscle tone and improve your posture.

• Mobility is the measure of the range of motion in the joints and good mobility aids agility and reduces the risk of injury. The range of movement found in Tai Chi forms combined with stretching exercise will considerably improve mobility.

• Co-ordination and agility can be enhanced through activity involving closely focused movements, balance and interaction with other people or equipment. Both solo and partner work in Tai Chi provides this.

Natural Help for Poor Circulation:
Tai Chi is also very helpful for improving circulation, but if you feel you need some extra help then an excellent supplement is Kiwiherb’s Organic Ginger & Kawakawa Syrup. The stimulating combination of these two herbs literally warms the body from the inside out and helps to increase blood flow around the body and especially to the extremities, such as the fingers and toes, which often suffer most.

Ginger helps energise the senses, boost vitality and increase overall circulation, and also possesses antiviral, anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting properties. Kawakawa is one of the most widely used herbs in traditional Maori medicine to improve circulatory problems and the syrup also contains antibacterial Manuka Honey

Especially useful if you suffer from chilblains or Raynaud’s disease and, as an added bonus, this organic herbal syrup also helps improve circulation to the brain, which in turn helps awaken the mind if feeling lacklustre and mentally weary.

Are Men Too Stressed to Cope with Heart Attack Risk?

September 9, 2010 by  
Filed under At Home, At Work, Healthy Ageing, Mens Health

You may have seen the news reports this week that because men are working longer hours and taking less exercise they are doubling their risk of a heart attack. If you know anyone in this vulnerable position, you might want to pass on this email to them to reinforce the importance of taking care of your heart in order to stay healthy.

Click here to find out more information about my How To Cope With Stress eBook —-> Cope With Stress

We know that stress plays a major part in whether or not you are going to be more likely to succumb to a whole host of health problems and heart disease is a major killer. Trying to handle a constant level of stress will undermine all your best efforts at staying healthy so I want to offer you some immediate help to identify and deal with your personal vulnerability to stress

Poor health, strained relationships, lack of effectiveness at work or at school are just some of the results of living with stress on a daily basis. Of course we cope, we have become experts at that, but we all have limits and going over them has serious consequences for our physical and mental and emotional health.

One of the problems of coping with stress is that we take that stressed state for granted and it becomes ‘normal’ for us and we don’t see the warning signs. Like all my books, this brand new ebook came from my own, and my clients, issues and in trying to help them I came up with some unique insights and a clear, practical plan to help them move on with their lives. When you are stressed you don’t have time to wade through heavy tomes or search out key information: now you don’t have to because I have done it for you. Here you will find all the easy, accessible information that you need to help you to identify the causes of stress in your life and then get some real, working, solutions.

How will this help men to cope?

In too many ways to list here, but if you are genuinely looking for ideas and solutions, then these are some of the key elements you will benefit from:

• Identifying the emotional and physical symptoms of stress

• Discovering the Chemical Connection to Stress

• Your Personal Vulnerabilities

• Self-assessment questionnaires

• Conventional and alternative treatments compared

• Self-help options

• Top tips to handle stress every day

Are you handling your stress or is it handling you?

Once you have read the book, then you can continue to use those top tips as part of your everyday life. Stress comes from those things that upset us the most and that is usually related to change. I have designed an action plan for both types. Knowing which you are will lead you to solutions to dealing with your stress, and there are questionnaires in the book to help you identify just what stresses you the most.

You are unique, and what stresses you, and how you respond to it is unique too. I have been writing and speaking about handling stress for over ten years and I know how distressing it can be to live with – both for you, and your friends, family and colleagues as they watch you struggle without really knowing how to help.

Let me give you the tools to not only overcome the stress you are currently dealing with, but give you with the means to avoid it in the future. I know it works, and so do those who have read it.

Are you ready?

If you want to know if my approach works, then my instantly down loadable e-book will be with you immediately so you can start to put your positive health plan into action. Visit my website at www.creativecatalyst.co.uk and on the marketplace page you will be able to buy How to Handle Stress — your proven action plan for just $9.97 and as a special bonus you also get my free special report on “ATTITUDE AND ILLNESS” because that is a key factor in having that healthy, stress-free future. Click here to find out more information —-> Cope With Stress

If you will learn to handle your stress, and not let it handle you, then that is a major bonus on the road to reducing your risk of a heart attack.

Dangers of Blackberry Thumb

September 4, 2009 by  
Filed under At Home, At Work, Lifestyle


No it is nothing to do with seasonal fruit picking, but is a genuine medical condition identified since the rise of texting on mobile phones. Swedish ergonomist Ewa Gustafsson at the Sahlgrenska Academy studied 56 young adults had reported pain in their hands, neck and arms and found their problem was the way they texted.

First they tended to hunch over the phone, and only used one thumb to text instead of two. Bet you never realised the dangers of that, but apparently the electrogoniometer that she used to measure activity in the muscles , showed excessive use of the thumb muscles. If you suffer from this condition, obviously try using both thumbs to type instead of one, do not hunch over too much and don’t type too fast.

It can also help to give your hands some support by varying your position frequently, using the backrest of your chair, resting your forearms against a desk or your thighs.

Cupping and carpal tunnel

July 25, 2009 by  
Filed under At Work, Medical Research & Studies


If you are a fan of the red carpet you may have noticed Gwyneth Paltrow exhibiting strange red marks on her body. This new celebrity treatment is endorsed by people as diverse as Britney Spears and Patsy Kensit and is an updated take on an established therapy in use in China, India, Arabia, Central Europe and parts of Africa. Used mainly for improving circulation, digestive and respiratory problems it now appears to be helpful for pain relief – particularly for those suffering from Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) – and I believe for RSI for those operating computer keyboards all day.

A new German study at the Immanuel Hospital in Berlin took 52 sufferers and randomly assigned them to a cupping programme or a placebo treatment. Their study, published on 25 June in a peer journal, confirms that this external suction technique is effective for providing temporary relief of pain from carpal tunnel syndrome.

How it works:

The treatment group had the wet cupping glasses applied in an area over the trapezius muscle. Cupping is applied to defined zones of the shoulder triangle which are connective tissue zones at the shoulder-neck region. The cupping creates a partial vacuum as the wet cup adheres to the skin – and also a rather obvious red mark which can take a while to go down. Unlike Gwyneth, you might want to avoid backless dresses until the mark disappears.

Results were impressive and showed that the patients experienced a highly significant decrease in CPS pain and other symptoms. Just one single treatment improved the ability to use the hand and wrist, and improved the quality of life as pain was decreased.

Napping for health

June 15, 2009 by  
Filed under At Home, At Work, Health

The nap has often had a bad press; associated with the elderly dozing off or the siesta so beloved of hot countries that is seen as ‘lazy’ or pointless in the more achievement-obsessed countries of the west. Leaders of men, and industry, however have often valued the nap as productive part of their day and now there is evidence that they were right all along.  Winston Churchill certainly was a great believer and he would have applauded new sleep studies backed up by acknowledged sleep experts that a nap during the day means you stand a better chance of being more mentally alert and efficient, and more likely to be in better mental health than your non-napping neighbour.

Have you ever started to just nod off in the middle of the day and sternly pulled yourself together and focused on what you were doing? Well, don’t because your body is trying to tell you that you need a break. If you want to continue being productive, don’t fight it but allow yourself to take a short interval and close your eyes. Don’t beat yourself up about it, just drift off, because resisting sleep means your brain is still arguing with your body and that won’t refresh you at all! You don’t even have to go to sleep, just relaxing and letting your mind drift can be just as refreshing – it’s the complete break from your routine that your body is trying to tell you that it needs.

If you don’t live in a country where a siesta is normal, then build in your own version of it. Can’t nap in the office? Why not? Tell people you are working on an important project and can’t be disturbed – and lock the door. Your health is an important project, so you are not being untruthful. Ten to twenty minutes works for most people, and certainly not longer than an hour or your body will slip into a real sleep and you will wake up feeling worse, not better. After lunch is often the time the body naturally wants to slow down as it is using energy to digest your food, but you need to monitor your own rhythm and see what works best for you.

At last – An accurate calorie counter – Even in your sleep!!

March 27, 2009 by  
Filed under At Work


Anyone who has ever tried a calorie counting diet knows what a nightmare it can be – particularly trying to compute the calories you burn through your everyday activities and exercise. Now help is at hand from some bright students at Georgia’s Institute of Technology in the USA.

Your gym may have a fancy piece of equipment that will tell you how many calories you are burning as you exercise, but what about walking upstairs or hovering the floor? Well there is now the ‘Happy HR’, a device that gives you total fitness monitoring and management – even while you sleep. This personal monitor straps onto your ankle or wrist and collects data continuously on all your activities that are related to your heart rate and exercise. All you have to do then is to upload that information to your PC and then and analyse it through web-based software.

The project came through a senior design student who was a keen runner and wanted a really accurate reading of his calorie output during the day. Most monitors on the market are either very cheap and simple pedometers, or expensive health monitors and he is looking to develop this for sale at around $100 and aimed at the growing health and fitness market.

He co opted other students in electrical engineering, biomedical engineering and industrial design to bring his concept to fruition. It’s a simple, subtle device that is smaller than an MP3 player and is due on the market in the autumn. Any British students out there working on innovative health projects? If so, let’s hear from you.

Next Page »