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Why Are People Turning to CBD For Help with Their Health?

CBD is just one of the 104 chemical compounds found in the Cannabis Sativa plant. Unlike other compounds of the plant, CBD is non-intoxicating and non-hallucinogenic. It is believed to have many therapeutic benefits that promote health and wellness in the body and mind.

CBD products have no intoxicating effects on the mind. It does not cause a high or euphoric feeling making it safe to use on a regular basis. The therapeutic effects of CBD have been studied by researchers and have been corroborated by consumers who swear that it helps them with everything from chronic pain to insomnia and anxiety.

There is an uptrend to using CBD nowadays, and people are making the CBD choice. The following are just some of the reasons why people are turning to CBD for help with their health.

1. CBD Provides Relief from Chronic Pain and Inflammation

Fibromyalgia is a condition wherein there is widespread muscle pain. Along with the pain are fatigue, memory, and mood issues. People who use CBD find that they get massive relief from fibromyalgia. CBD also helps keep the nervous system from further degeneration.

Chronic inflammation is bad for the body, and it can promote the development of more serious diseases such as heart disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, and type 1 diabetes. CBD decreases inflammation and can be seen as giving the body protection against serious illnesses.

2. CBD is seen as an alternative to Ibuprofen

People who do not use CBD Oil use NSAIDs for their pain management. NSAIDs are also called non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and are available without a prescription. Examples of NSAIDs are Ibuprofen and naproxen sodium. However, NSAIDs have side effects. Regular use of NSAIDs can damage the kidneys and can cause heart attacks and strokes.

CBD has the same effects as NSAIDs in relieving pain symptoms but without the negative side effects.

3. CBD is an effective cure against epilepsy

Some people have drug-resistant epilepsy, and CBD is seen as an alternative medication that can help control seizures. In 2018, a drug, Epidiolex, was prescribed to people who are suffering from two particular types of epilepsy called Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome (LGS) and Dravet Syndrome (DS). These two types of epilepsy don’t respond well to anti-seizure medications, but CBD has been proven to help control it.

4. CBD helps treat mental and behavioral disorders

Anxiety and other neuropsychiatric conditions is a growing health problem worldwide. Many health professionals will advise against the use of cannabis to treat mood and mental disorders because it will only exacerbate it. However, CBD has non-psychoactive properties and is non-hallucinogenic, making it safe to use. CBD can be used to treat a lot of mood and behavioral disorders such as Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), General anxiety disorder, Panic disorder, Social anxiety disorder, Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), and Substance-abuse disorders.

5. CBD can help treat heart ailments

Heart disease is a global problem and is one of the main causes of death. Having a healthy lifestyle, which includes proper diet and adequate exercise, can help stave off this disease. CBD is also an effective therapy against heart disease, according to studies. CBD has preventive factors against the buildup of oxidative stress and inflammation, which is the main cause of heart diseases.

In a study, a group of participants was given a placebo while the other group was administered with cannabidiol. The cannabidiol group had significantly lower blood pressure compared to the placebo group prompting researchers to conclude that CBD’s stress-fighting features are effective.

6. CBD helps with skin conditions

The beauty world has embraced CBD and has infused it in various creams, serums, and gels to help promote healthy skin. CBD is known to treat acne because of its anti-inflammatory properties as well as reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles due to its antioxidative properties. CBD also helps in treating serious skin conditions such as eczema. CBD regulates oil production on the skin by lowering the production of sebum.

7. CBD can help people with withdrawal symptoms

People who have been addicted to a substance will have withdrawal symptoms, which include nausea, pain, insomnia, and mood disorders. People who have opioid, cocaine, and other psychostimulant addictions will find that using CBD can vastly improve their recovery.

Smokers who smoke regular nicotine are also smoking less when they use inhalers with CBD.

Final Thoughts

CBD is a safe and natural way to heal many ailments, and its popularity has a reason: it does work. Unlike other medications, CBD is said to have fewer side effects. CBD has many therapeutic benefits, and more research should be done to exploit the many features and benefits of CBD further so people can use this substance not only for recreational but also for medicinal use.

Shane Dwyer
Author: Shane Dwyer
Shane Dwyer is a cannabis advocate who isn’t afraid to tell the world about it! You can find his views, rants, and tips published regularly at The 420 Times.

Marijuana & Cannabis News – The 420 Times

Health Tip: Creating a Healthy Routine

— People are creatures of habit, so breaking old practices and forming new routines can be daunting.

To start and maintain a new routine, NorthShore University Health System recommends:

  • Figure out what needs to be in your routine.
  • Set small goals.
  • Lay out a plan.
  • Be consistent over time.
  • Be prepared.
  • Make it fun.
  • Track your progress.
  • Reward yourself.

© 2019 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Posted: November 2019

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Recalls of Blood Pressure Med Took Toll on Patients’ Health

By Dennis Thompson
HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 20, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Emergency room visits for high blood pressure surged following last year’s recall of the popular heart drug valsartan, Canadian researchers report.

Within the first month of the recall, there was a 55% increase of people coming to Ontario-area emergency departments complaining of high blood pressure, said lead researcher Cynthia Jackevicius. She is a senior scientist with the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences, in Toronto.

Some of these patients likely were valsartan users who stopped taking the blood pressure med after seeing scary recall news citing a potential carcinogen found in some lots of the drug, Jackevicius said.

“Nine out of 10 did have an alternative replacement” for valsartan within three months. “However, that means that one out of 10 did not,” Jackevicius said.

“That’s a little bit concerning, that some of these patients may have either been confused or concerned, and decided not to switch to another medication,” she added.

The recall occurred in July 2018 in both Canada and the United States, after generics maker Mylan Pharmaceuticals detected trace amounts of a probable cancer-causing chemical called N-nitrosodiethylamine (NDEA) in valsartan meds.

It was an unusually large recall that involved intense media interest, and Jackevicius and her colleagues wondered how it might have affected the drug’s users.

So they turned to Canadian prescription and medical records to track how valsartan users responded to the crisis.

Dr. Mary Norine Walsh, a past president of the American College of Cardiology and a cardiologist at St. Vincent Heart Center of Indiana, said, “It’s really interesting data, because my assumption would have been in Canada and the U.S. that substitution was made pretty much instantly.”

That’s what happened — mostly.

Within one month, 85% of patients had a new prescription for an alternative to their generic valsartan, Jackevicius said. By three months, 90% had a prescription for a different blood pressure drug.

But that left 10% of patients with recalled valsartan who hadn’t been prescribed an alternative, Jackevicius noted.

“Maybe they heard about the recall on the news and never went to their physician or clinician to get a substitution,” Walsh said.

Continued

“When there’s a recall like this, is there a patient lack of trust in the system? Do they not get back on drugs because they’re afraid? I don’t know,” Walsh asked.

In the immediate aftermath of the recall, people swarmed Ontario emergency departments for blood pressure treatment, the researchers found.

Many of these folks likely were people who were afraid to take their valsartan and went to the ER for a replacement drug when they couldn’t reach their doctor, Jackevicius suggested.

“That’s not really the best place to go” when your drug is recalled, she said. “Going to the emergency department is not a good use of the resources there, and it’s not a good use of the patient’s time.”

However, there were also probably quite a few who stopped taking the drug altogether and suffered symptoms related to high blood pressure, Jackevicius and Walsh said.

According to Walsh, “People did worse if they came off it, which is not surprising because the primary reason they were prescribed it was for hypertension.”

Jackevicius said the incident revealed holes in medicine’s response to major drug recalls.

Empowering pharmacists to reach out to patients and prescribe alternatives could be one way to improve the response to a recall, Jackevicius said.

Pharmacists have direct knowledge of the specific drugs handed out to patients that their doctors don’t, she explained.

“It would make sense that they take more responsibility and be given the authority to substitute common medications, to be a point person in the event of a recall,” Jackevicius said. “They are accessible and would know similar medications that might be OK for that condition.”

Public health officials also could help by promptly creating a consensus list of approved alternative medications, so doctors and pharmacists could quickly and efficiently move patients onto a new prescription, she added.

Jackevicius presented her study last weekend at the American Heart Association’s annual meeting, in Philadelphia. The work was also published recently in the journal Circulation.

WebMD News from HealthDay

Sources

SOURCES: Cynthia Jackevicius, Pharm.D., senior scientist, Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences, Toronto, Canada; Mary Norine Walsh, M.D., past president,  American College of Cardiology, and cardiologist, St. Vincent Heart Center of Indiana; Nov. 11, 2019,Circulation

Copyright © 2013-2018 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

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Health Tip: Thanksgiving and Your Heart Health

— Though Thanksgiving dinner is treasured by many Americans, the meal typically isn’t heart-healthy.

Including holiday staples such as mashed potatoes and stuffing, the traditional feast is full of fatty, high-cholesterol foods, says the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

For a healthier holiday meal, the school suggests:

  • Devote most of your plate to vegetables, such as green beans, carrots and squash.
  • Don’t drench everything in gravy. Use as little as you can.
  • Limit turkey skin and dark meat.
  • Have a small slice of pie for dessert. Resist a second helping.

The school says after all is said and done, one meal won’t ruin your heart and arteries. It urges you to eat healthy during the holiday season overall.

© 2019 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Posted: November 2019

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Recalls of Blood Pressure Med Took Toll on Patients’ Health

WEDNESDAY, Nov. 20, 2019 — Emergency room visits for high blood pressure surged following last year’s recall of the popular heart drug valsartan, Canadian researchers report.

Within the first month of the recall, there was a 55% increase of people coming to Ontario-area emergency departments complaining of high blood pressure, said lead researcher Cynthia Jackevicius. She is a senior scientist with the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences, in Toronto.

Some of these patients likely were valsartan users who stopped taking the blood pressure med after seeing scary recall news citing a potential carcinogen found in some lots of the drug, Jackevicius said.

“Nine out of 10 did have an alternative replacement” for valsartan within three months. “However, that means that one out of 10 did not,” Jackevicius said.

“That’s a little bit concerning, that some of these patients may have either been confused or concerned, and decided not to switch to another medication,” she added.

The recall occurred in July 2018 in both Canada and the United States, after generics maker Mylan Pharmaceuticals detected trace amounts of a probable cancer-causing chemical called N-nitrosodiethylamine (NDEA) in valsartan meds.

It was an unusually large recall that involved intense media interest, and Jackevicius and her colleagues wondered how it might have affected the drug’s users.

So they turned to Canadian prescription and medical records to track how valsartan users responded to the crisis.

Dr. Mary Norine Walsh, a past president of the American College of Cardiology and a cardiologist at St. Vincent Heart Center of Indiana, said, “It’s really interesting data, because my assumption would have been in Canada and the U.S. that substitution was made pretty much instantly.”

That’s what happened — mostly.

Within one month, 85% of patients had a new prescription for an alternative to their generic valsartan, Jackevicius said. By three months, 90% had a prescription for a different blood pressure drug.

But that left 10% of patients with recalled valsartan who hadn’t been prescribed an alternative, Jackevicius noted.

“Maybe they heard about the recall on the news and never went to their physician or clinician to get a substitution,” Walsh said.

“When there’s a recall like this, is there a patient lack of trust in the system? Do they not get back on drugs because they’re afraid? I don’t know,” Walsh asked.

In the immediate aftermath of the recall, people swarmed Ontario emergency departments for blood pressure treatment, the researchers found.

Many of these folks likely were people who were afraid to take their valsartan and went to the ER for a replacement drug when they couldn’t reach their doctor, Jackevicius suggested.

“That’s not really the best place to go” when your drug is recalled, she said. “Going to the emergency department is not a good use of the resources there, and it’s not a good use of the patient’s time.”

However, there were also probably quite a few who stopped taking the drug altogether and suffered symptoms related to high blood pressure, Jackevicius and Walsh said.

According to Walsh, “People did worse if they came off it, which is not surprising because the primary reason they were prescribed it was for hypertension.”

Jackevicius said the incident revealed holes in medicine’s response to major drug recalls.

Empowering pharmacists to reach out to patients and prescribe alternatives could be one way to improve the response to a recall, Jackevicius said.

Pharmacists have direct knowledge of the specific drugs handed out to patients that their doctors don’t, she explained.

“It would make sense that they take more responsibility and be given the authority to substitute common medications, to be a point person in the event of a recall,” Jackevicius said. “They are accessible and would know similar medications that might be OK for that condition.”

Public health officials also could help by promptly creating a consensus list of approved alternative medications, so doctors and pharmacists could quickly and efficiently move patients onto a new prescription, she added.

Jackevicius presented her study last weekend at the American Heart Association’s annual meeting, in Philadelphia. The work was also published recently in the journal Circulation.

More information

The American Heart Association has more about blood pressure drugs.

© 2019 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Posted: November 2019

Drugs.com – Daily MedNews

Health Tip: Treating Post-Nasal Drip

— That persistent tickle in the back of your throat may be diagnosed as post-nasal drip, says Harvard Medical School.

It mentions these common treatment options for the condition:

  • Use a humidifier, or take a hot shower.
  • Keep well-hydrated to help keep mucus thin.
  • Sleep on propped-up pillows.
  • Moisten the inside of your nose with an over-the-counter product.
  • Use an oral decongestant or antihistamine.

If these approaches aren’t effective, speak with your doctor about prescription treatments.

© 2019 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Posted: November 2019

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Daylight Saving Time Bad for Health, Experts Claim

By Robert Preidt
HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, Nov. 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Clocks were set back one hour on Sunday, but some health experts say it might be better if time changes ended for good.

It’s more than an inconvenience, it’s a potential health threat, they warn.

Over time, daylight saving time (DST) eliminates bright morning light that’s crucial to synchronizing your biologic clock, possibly putting people at increased risk of heart attack, stroke and other harmful effects of sleep deprivation, said Dr. Beth Ann Malow, director of the Sleep Disorders Division at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, Tenn.

During DST changes, adults lose an average of 15 to 20 minutes of sleep. Along with potential health problems, this may also increase the risk of serious or fatal accidents.

“People think the one-hour transition is no big deal, that they can get over this in a day, but what they don’t realize is their biological clock is out of sync,” Malow said in a Vanderbilt news release.

“It’s not one hour twice a year. It’s a misalignment of our biologic clocks for eight months of the year,” she said. “When we talk about DST and the relationship to light we are talking about profound impacts on the biological clock, which is a structure rooted in the brain. It impacts brain functions such as energy levels and alertness.”

In a commentary published Nov. 4 in the journal JAMA Neurology, Malow and her colleagues summarized large epidemiological studies that support a halt to setting clocks forward or back.

Some people have more flexible circadian rhythms and adjust quickly while others are more affected by the switch to and from DST, including children and people with neurological conditions, Malow said.

There’s evidence that even slight time disruptions, like living on different sides of time zones, can be enough to affect a person’s circadian rhythms, according to Malow.

While many sleep experts believe that doing away with time changes is a good idea, the U.S. federal government isn’t considering any such move. However, many states are taking action. Since 2015, several states have passed DST exemption laws.

WebMD News from HealthDay

Sources

SOURCE: Vanderbilt University Medical Center, news release, Nov. 4, 2019

Copyright © 2013-2018 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

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WebMD Health

Health Tip: Advice for Better Looking Hair

— Maintaining smooth, shiny hair doesn’t have to be difficult. The products and techniques you use to wash your hair can go a long way, says the American Academy of Dermatology.

The academy suggests you:

  • Wash oily hair more frequently.
  • Concentrate shampoo on the scalp.
  • Use conditioner after every shampoo.
  • Concentrate conditioner on the tips of the hair.
  • Choose a shampoo and conditioner made for your hair type.
  • Protect hair when swimming.

© 2019 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Posted: November 2019

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Wildfire Smoke Threatens Health for Miles Around

By Robert Preidt
HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 30, 2019 (HealthDay News) — Smoke from the wildfires raging in California poses a serious health risk — even to those far away from the blazes, an expert warns.

“Smoke can present special health hazards to humans and pets, especially children, older adults and those with chronic respiratory problems such as emphysema, asthma, congestive heart failure, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and others,” said Dr. Zab Mosenifar, a lung specialist at Cedars-Sinai, in Los Angeles.

“Small particles in the air can travel hundreds of miles. While the immediate danger is within a 25-mile radius of a fire — depending on the winds — particles travel and float in the air for up to two weeks after the fire is out,” Mosenifar explained in a hospital news release.

Firefighters this month have been battling blazes from one end of California to the other. The whipping winds fanning the flames have helped distribute noxious particles far and wide.

The smoke can cause a number of health problems.

“When inhaled, smoke and small particles — which consist of water vapor, carbon monoxide and ash — can cause both short-term and long-term damage to the airways and lungs. Risks include irritation of the airways, inhalation of particles in the air and, of course, exposure to smoke if you are near the fires,” Mosenifar said.

Certain people should limit the amount of time they spend outside if there is wildfire smoke in their area, he said.

“Those with compromised immune systems — particularly people with lung disease or heart disease or the elderly or very young — should do their best to stay indoors. That goes for pets, as well. Animals, especially dogs, can have an even stronger reaction to smoky air than humans,” Mosenifar said.

“Even if you cannot see the smoke and particles, be aware that they are still there and still harmful,” Mosenifar warned.

Here’s what you can do to help protect yourself and your loved ones:

If you have an air filter at home or work, use it to protect indoor air quality. If you don’t have an air filter, setting an air conditioner to recirculate air can help with indoor air quality. Check that the air conditioner filters are clean.

Continued

Continue using inhalers if you have respiratory problems. This is crucial, Mosenifar emphasized.

If you have to go outside when there’s wildfire smoke in your area, wear a mask. It should be an N95 mask to keep particles out. If you don’t have a mask, cover your face with a wet towel.

“If you are suffering from persistent coughing, wheezing or an inability to catch your breath, it may be time to see a doctor, especially for those with respiratory problems. Watch for the same symptoms in pets. If they persist, seek veterinary assistance,” Mosenifar advised.

WebMD News from HealthDay

Sources

SOURCE: Cedars-Sinai, news release, Oct. 28, 2019

Copyright © 2013-2018 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

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WebMD Health

Health Tip: Understanding Social Anxiety

— About 7 percent of Americans are affected by social anxiety disorder, a mental illness in which a person feels uncontrollable fear during social situations.

These instances may range from answering a question in class to talking to a cashier at a grocery store.

Often, people with social anxiety disorder are afraid of being humiliated, judged or rejected, says the National Institute of Mental Health. Though the cause of social anxiety is not known, underdeveloped social skills and genetics are thought to contribute.

The agency recommends talking with a doctor if you have symptoms of social anxiety. After a diagnosis is made, psychotherapy, medication or both may be part of a treatment plan.

© 2019 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Posted: October 2019

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Many Women Are Sharing Breast Milk, and That Has Health Experts Worried

FRIDAY, Oct. 25, 2019 — “Informal” sharing of breast milk may be more common than thought, with too many parents mistakenly thinking it’s risk-free, new research suggests.

In a pair of studies, researchers delved into the issue of donor breast milk, and how parents are choosing to get it. In one, a survey of 655 parents who used donor milk found that only about 36% got it from official “milk banks” that screen and pasteurize donations.

Most said they’d turned to “informal” sharing, where parents get breast milk either from a nursing mom they know or via the internet. It’s a practice discouraged by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and U.S. Food and Drug Administration due to safety concerns.

There is a risk of dilution, or contamination with viruses or bacteria, particularly with donor milk obtained online, explained Dr. Lori Feldman-Winter, who chairs the AAP’s Section on Breastfeeding.

Certain viruses, such as HIV, can also be transmitted through breast milk.

“If you get breast milk from someone you know, it’s probably a low-risk situation,” said Feldman-Winter.

However, she added, that doesn’t mean there’s no risk.

Study author Dr. Ruth Milanaik, of Cohen Children’s Medical Center/Northwell Health in New York, made the same point. Even when breast milk is given for free, with the best of intentions, she said there could be accidental contamination or temperature instability that causes the milk to spoil.

“The only recommended option for obtaining donor breast milk is through a milk bank,” said Milanaik.

That is easier said than done, however.

Right now, there are 28 nonprofit milk banks across the United States that are part of the Human Milk Banking Association of North America. And most of that milk, Feldman-Winter explained, goes to hospitals for preemies whose mothers cannot yet express their own breast milk.

That means little left over for moms of full-term infants who cannot breastfeed, or for adoptive or male gay parents. And even when it is available, there is a steep cost — around $ 4 an ounce, Milanaik said.

With informal sharing, parents may get breast milk for free — either from a friend or by finding a local donor with the help of social networking. There are also websites that allow women to sell their breast milk — it’s not a cheap option, but the prices are typically lower than those of a milk bank, Milanaik noted.

Breast milk is considered the best nutrition for infants. However, it’s not clear whether, for most babies, donor breast milk is a healthier choice than formula.

There’s proof of the benefits to preemies in the hospital, Feldman-Winter said. But when it comes to healthy, full-term infants, “the science just isn’t there yet,” she said.

So if breastfeeding or banked milk are not options, the AAP recommends formula-feeding.

The new findings will be presented by Milanaik and co-author and Cohen researcher Nikita Sood on Saturday at the AAP’s annual meeting in New Orleans, and are based on two related studies. Such research is considered preliminary until published in a peer-reviewed journal.

In the first study, a survey found that of those who chose informal sharing, 56% said they had no safety concerns, and 78% did not ask for medical information from donors because they “trusted them.” More than half said they opted for informal sharing over milk banks due to costs.

In the other study, the researchers looked at 122 parenting-blog posts on donor breast milk. Most, they found, focused on informal sharing rather than milk banks, and most “lacked important discussion of safety concerns.”

It’s not clear how many parents are choosing informal milk sharing. But the new findings suggest it may be more common than pediatricians realize, Feldman-Winter said.

“Certainly one of the take-home messages here is that doctors should talk about this,” she said. “We’re missing an opportunity, as pediatricians, to open up a dialogue and help clarify misperceptions.”

As for nursing moms who have extra milk they want to donate, Milanaik urged them to give to a milk bank.

More information

The Human Milk Banking Association of North America has more on breast milk donation.

© 2019 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Posted: October 2019

Drugs.com – Daily MedNews

AHA News: 5 Scary Health Facts to Spook You This Halloween

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 23, 2019 (American Heart Association News) — Spooky, scream-inducing characters whose health has clearly taken a turn for the worse – skeletons and ghosts, for example – are as much a part of Halloween fun as pumpkins and candy.

But once the creepy decorations are put away, some frightening health facts can haunt us year-round – and should prompt us to take action.

“There’s been a lot of thought about how you motivate people to change,” said Mercedes Carnethon, a professor of preventive medicine at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago. “Sometimes scare tactics do work, like the anti-tobacco ads that showed the person smoking through a hole in her neck.”

Dr. Tyler Cooper, president and CEO of Cooper Aerobics, a comprehensive health and wellness center in Dallas, said no single strategy works for everyone.

“Everybody has a different motivator,” said Cooper, a preventive medicine physician. “If that’s fear, OK. But some people have this belief that if something hasn’t happened to them yet, it’s not going to happen. The best thing we can do is present the information about what they can expect if they continue down the path they’re on.”

If you’re not scared yet, here are some terrifying health statistics:

Most Americans spend more time in the kitchen than in the gym.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention calculated in 2018 that just 23.2% of U.S. adults meet the federal recommendations for weekly exercise: at least two and a half hours of moderate-intensity aerobic activity (such as a brisk walk) or at least 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity (such as running), and two sessions of muscle-strengthening activity. That figure was down slightly from the year before.

By comparison, a 2018 survey from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics found people spend an average of more than four hours per week cooking and cleaning up the kitchen.

“People think that it requires some type of herculean effort to improve their health and that’s not true,” Cooper said. “If you’re not doing anything, start something. Just go for a walk around the block.”

Vaping among teenagers has soared.

In 2011, only 1.5% of high school students had used e-cigarettes in the past 30 days, according to the National Youth Tobacco Survey. The figure in 2018 was 20.8%.

That increase, the CDC warned in a report earlier this year, “has erased recent progress in reducing overall tobacco product use among youths.”

E-cigarettes, which typically contain addictive nicotine, may damage blood vessels, raise blood pressure and increase the risk of clots. Beyond that, the CDC is investigating a nationwide outbreak of lung injuries linked to vaping that has resulted in a growing number of deaths.

Because the vaping phenomenon is still new, Carnethon said, “We don’t even know the effects on long-term cardiovascular health.”

Fewer than half of people who have a cardiac arrest outside a hospital get bystander CPR.

Immediate CPR can double or triple a cardiac arrest victim’s chances of survival, according to the American Heart Association.

That means when someone suffers a cardiac arrest, bystanders are crucial until trained lifesavers arrive. Whether the reason is lack of CPR training or a reluctance to get involved, experts say doing something is always better than doing nothing.

There are 9.4 million American adults with diabetes who don’t know they have it.

Diabetes left untreated can lead to damage in nearly every organ in the body, with complications ranging from heart problems and strokes to vision loss, nerve damage and even amputation.

“If you don’t know you have it, you can’t treat it,” Carnethon said.

More than 14 million U.S. households are food insecure.

The term refers to people who can’t afford enough food for themselves or their families, or who may not have access to healthy foods to ensure a proper diet. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, 14.3 million households were food insecure at some point during 2018, representing 11.1% of the nation’s households.

Even if people are not personally affected, Carnethon said, the national problem should alarm all of us.

“Social determinants like food insecurity contribute to health outcomes,” she said. “These are issues that as a society we can promote policy changes to improve the health of everyone.”

At Halloween and throughout the year, Cooper said, the message is the same: “Take charge of your own health. If you do your best to make even some minor changes, you’ll see the benefits.”

And if the facts and figures don’t scare you, Carnethon said, think about people.

“It seems data doesn’t motivate people, but personal stories and personal connections do,” she said. “We need to put a personal face on good health and make it as relatable as possible.”

So have a happy, healthy Halloween, she said. “And go easy on the candy.”

© 2019 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Posted: October 2019

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Health Tip: Prioritizing Your Wellness

— The strains of everyday life can affect overall health, says the National Safety Council.

To focus on wellness each day, the council encourages you to:

  • Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Go for a walk at lunch.
  • Find nearby exercise classes.
  • Choose healthy snacks.
  • Take breaks to stand up and stretch.
  • Get regular medical checkups.
  • Talk to your doctor about alternatives to opioid pain medication.

© 2019 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Posted: October 2019

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Health Tip: Planning a Stress-Reducing Vacation

— Not all vacations are created equally. Studies show that the happiness gleaned from a vacation is dependent on how stressful it is, says Harvard Business Review.

It found that 94 percent of people have as much or more energy after a positive trip.

To create a positive vacation, HBR recommends:

  • Ask for help when figuring out details, such as transportation.
  • Plan more than one month in advance.
  • Travel far from home. “Staycations” tend to be less meaningful.
  • Meet someone knowledgeable at the destination.

© 2019 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Posted: October 2019

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Health Tip: What to Expect When Your Eyes Are Dilated

— When dilating your eyes, your doctor will put a small amount of eye drop solution into each of your eyes, says the American Academy of Ophthalmology. Within 30 minutes, your pupils should fully open.

Your vision will be blurry, and focusing on close objects will be difficult. And you will be extra sensitive to bright light.

The effects of dilating eye drops last up to several hours, so the academy recommends having someone drive you home after your appointment.

© 2019 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Posted: October 2019

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