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The Daily Herald • May 20, 2014 • HEALTHMIND&BODY

HEALTHMIND&BODY • May 20, 2014 • The Daily Herald

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Get the facts on stomach bugs to feel better fast Few things can prove more painful or inconvenient than stomach bugs. Digestive tract illnesses can cause persons to spend many hours of the day running to restrooms while confining others to the house for extended periods of time. Though often temporary, stomach bugs can last several days to more than a week and they may lead to more dire situations if not properly treated.

or diarrhea last more than a few days. Doctors may take a stool sample to determine what’s behind the bug. In the event of a bacterial infection, an antibiotic may be needed to clear up the infection. Visiting a doctor when stomach problems persist is also beneficial because he or she may be able to rule out certain conditions, such as colitis, ulcers or Crohn’s disease.

Causes

Helpful hints

Stomach bugs are known as gastroenteritis, a condition characterized by an inflamed and irritated stomach and intestines. The Mayo Clinic says people are most likely to contract gastroenteritis after eating contaminated foods or drinking contaminated water. Sharing items, like utensils, with someone who is infected is another way to contract gastroenteritis. Viral gastroenteritis is caused by a virus that enters the body. However, bacteria and parasites also are responsible for stomach bug outbreaks. Viruses that trigger gastroenteritis include adenoviruses, rotaviruses, calciviruses, astroviruses, and noroviruses. Bacteria that can cause gastroenteritis include E. coli, salmonella, campylobacter, and shingella.

When a stomach bug strikes, it is best to refrain from eating, especially when vomiting regularly. Stick to clear broths and liquids, which are easy on the digestive system, while the stomach is irritated. Once vomiting has subsided, sufferers should opt for a bland diet. When plagued by diarrhea, the BRAT diet is adviseable. This acronym stands for Bananas, Rice, Applesauce, and Toast. These foods can help bind a person and are relatively easy to digest. Because a stomach bug often leads to dehydration, drink plenty of fluids. To restore salt and electrolyte balances, sports drinks are adviseable for adults, while a beverage like Pedialyte is best for children and the elderly. When symptoms begin to subside, sufferers can gradually add foods back into their diets. But men and women should avoid particularly spicy or heavy foods until they are convinced that they have fully recovered. Many people are tempted to turn to an anti-diarrheal medication at the first sign of a stomach bug. However, the side effects of gastroenteritis are the body’s method of ridding itself from whatever has brought on symptoms. Failure to let nature run its course could result in a rebound of symptoms or a longer-lasting sickness. To avoid suffering from

Symptoms Stomach bugs often strike suddenly. Sufferers may experience queasiness or nausea and a loss of appetite. Pain or bloating in the stomach also may occur. Vomiting and diarrhea often cause many people to suspect something is wrong, and some stomach conditions are also accompanied by fever, achiness and lethargy. Treatment Many people opt for a wait-and-see approach when struck with stomach bugs. Gastroenteritis often heals on its own. Some refer to it as a “24-hour-bug” and find that once the stomach has been purged clean, the offender no longer wreaks havoc on the body. But stomach bugs can be more persistent as well. Sufferers should visit a doctor if vomiting

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stomach bugs, men and women should consider the following tips. * Frequently wash your hands when preparing food and thoroughly cook foods, particularly meats, poultry and eggs, to reduce potential exposure to bacteria. * E. coli may be present on some fresh produce, so wash produce carefully before consumption. * Consider taking a probiotic supplement to increase the amount of good bacteria in your digestive tract. Yogurt also contains live cultures that are good at maintaining digestive health. * Avoid contact with people who claim to have the stomach flu. * Promptly consult a doctor if symptoms do not go away or if you have a high fever or blood in your stool. This may indicate a different illness. Stomach bugs are never enjoyable, but there are ways to manage the symptoms and get back on the road to recovery.

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The Daily Herald • May 20, 2014 • HEALTHMIND&BODY

HEALTHMIND&BODY • May 20, 2014 • The Daily Herald

The nutritive power of apples Who has not heard the old adage, “an apple a day keeps the doctor away”? It may seem unlikely that one fruit could be so effective at maintaining good health, but apples really are a super food. Apples are a member of the Rose family and are related to pears, peaches, apricots and plums. Though considered a fall fruit, apples can be enjoyed year-round thanks to commercial food production and importing. Apart from being sweet, sometimes sour and refreshingly crisp, apples pack a number of nutritional benefits. Research has shown that apples can help to reduce a person’s risk of heart disease and help those with diabetes. In addition, apples can help fight cancer and prevent dental problems. According to new information from long-running studies published in the British Medical Journal, eating at least two servings a week of whole fruit, particularly apples, blueberries or grapes, reduces a person’s risk for type 2 diabetes by around 23 percent. Apples are high in many antioxidants and, as a result, this makes them especially valuable at fighting illness. For example, the disease-fighting compounds in antioxidants have been shown to reduce the risk of certain cancers by neutralizing free radicals. Apples also are very high in fiber. Fiber is needed to help a person feel full and can also regulate digestive function. Fiber also can help reduce cholesterol by preventing the buildup of cholesterol-causing plaques in the blood vessels, improving cardiovascular function and possibly reducing risk of a stroke as a result. In addition to working their magic inside of the body, apples can have a noticeable impact on physical appearance as well. Apples are sometimes referred to as “nature’s toothbrushes” because they can brighten and clean the teeth. The crisp, abrasive texture stimulates the gums and removes debris from the teeth. What’s more, the natural mild acidity of apples helps to stimulate saliva production

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~ On the cover ~

7

Identifying Depression

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Snacking Smart 4 How to find time for fitness 6 The basics of boosting metabolism that can rinse away germs that lead to plaque. An apple weighs in at under 100 calories per serving, making them a low-fat and ideal snack any time of the day. Because they are low in calories and full of fiber, apples can help men and women maintain a healthy weight. Because apples can be plagued by insects and parasites, some growers repeatedly spray the trees with pesti-

cides. It is adviseable to buy organic apples to avoid many of the pesticide dangers and to be able to safely eat the apples raw. There are more than 7,000 varieties of apples on the market today. With such variety, availability and health benefits, apples make a convenient and nutritious snack.

8 Can human growth hormone cheat aging 9 Healthy Habits

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The Daily Herald • May 20, 2014 • HEALTHMIND&BODY

HEALTHMIND&BODY • May 20, 2014 • The Daily Herald

for the...

Pre-K-12th Grade Enroll Your 4 Year Old in Our PRE-K READING PROGRAM

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For 65 years, Mental Health America and our affiliates across the country have led the observance of May is Mental Health Month by reaching millions of people through the media, local events and screenings. The 2014 May is Mental Health Month theme is “Mind Your Health.” Our goals are to build public recognition about the importance of mental health to overall health and wellness; inform people of the ways that the mind and body interact with each other; and provide tips and tools for taking positive actions to protect mental health and promote whole health.

Finding time to exercise is no small feat for many men and women. Obligations at home and at the office can make it hard to fit in a workout, a familiar quandary for men and women with multiple commitments. Though it’s not always easy to fit in a workout when juggling multiple responsibilities, men and women must consider the responsibility they have with regard to maintaining their physical and mental health. The United States Department of Health and Human Services advises that healthy adults get at least 150 minutes a week of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes a week of vigorous aerobic activity, and that such activity should be spread out over the course of the week. In addition, the DHHS also advises that healthy adults include strength training exercises in their workout regimens at least twice a week. Such a workout schedule can improve both physical and mental health, making it easier for men and women to handle their hectic schedules. While such recommendations may seem manageable, many men and women still feel as if there’s just not enough time in the day for them to incorporate a daily exercise regimen. The following are a few ways such men and women can find time for fitness. * Take a walking lunch. Many professionals have heard of a “working lunch,” but those strapped for time to exercise might want to take a walking lunch instead. Rather than sitting at your desk or in your favorite booth at a nearby restaurant on your lunch hour each day, consider squeezing in some time to walk during those 30-60 minutes you normally spend eating or catching up on office gossip with coworkers. Invite a few coworkers along, walking to and from your favorite restaurant or finding a nearby park and going for a quick walk. This is an easy way to squeeze in the recommended 30 minutes of moderate aerobic activity each day, and you will no doubt feel more energized after lunch than if you had simply eaten without exercising. * Exercise in the morning. Research has shown that men and women who exercise in the mornings exercise on a more consistent basis than those who exercise later in the day, including after leaving the office at the

end of the workday. When exercising in the early morning hours, men and women are less likely to encounter scheduling conflicts, as coworkers, colleagues and even the kids will likely still be asleep. That means fewer interrupted or missed workouts. * Prepare meals ahead of time. If working out in the morning simply won’t work out for you, then consider planning meals in advance so you can free up time between the office and dinner each night. For example, slow cookers and crockpots make it possible to start making dinner in the early morning and require little or no effort once you arrive home in the evening. Plan to cook a few meals each week in a slow cooker, which will free up time for you to workout when you would otherwise be preparing dinner. * Work while you workout. Smartphones and tablets have made it easier than ever to get work done while you’re away from work. This includes getting some work done while you’re getting in your weekly recommended aerobic activity on the treadmill, elliptical machine or exercise bike. Thanks to smartphones and tablets, you can now read and answer emails and work on some projects while you sweat away those extra pounds. * Get off the couch. Many men and women prefer to unwind on the couch as they catch up on their favorite television shows and movies. But such unwinding should not come at the expense of working out. Much like catching up on work at the gym, you also can catch up on your favorite shows and movies while at the gym. Many smartphones and tablets now have apps that allow users to access subscription streaming services, so users who can’t find time to exercise should take advantage of such apps and watch their favorite shows and movies from the treadmill instead of the couch. Readers who can comfortably read while exercising can follow a similar route and read on the elliptical instead of sitting sedentary in a chair as they make their way through the latest bestseller. Finding time to exercise can be difficult, but even the busiest men and women have several options at their disposal as they attempt to make fitness a bigger priority in their lives.

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Voted Reader’s Choice In Roanoke Valley Heart disease is one of the leading causes of death across the globe. According to the World Health Organization, ischaemic heart disease, in which blood supply to the heart is reduced, is the leading cause of death in middle- and high-income countries and the fourth-leading cause of death in low-income countries. Perhaps the most troubling fact about the prevalence of heart disease is that it can be largely preventable. The American Heart Association notes that there are several ways to easily improve heart health and avoid becoming one of the millions of people to succumb to heart disease. * Embrace aerobic exercise. Aerobic exercise is essential to cardiovascular health. Daily aerobic exercise, which can be as simple as walking around the neighborhood, can help men and women lower their blood pressure, maintain a healthy weight and lower their bad cholesterol,

which can circulate in the blood and cause blockages that can lead to heart attack. * Adopt a low-sodium diet that’s also low in cholesterol. Diet can be a friend or foe with regards to heart disease. A heart-friendly diet that’s low in sodium and cholesterol can help you maintain healthy cholesterol levels as well as a healthy blood pressure. * Monitor your blood pressure. A blood pressure reading is a staple of many doctor visits, but men and women should monitor their blood pressure even when they aren’t visiting their physicians. High blood pressure does not always produce symptoms, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t potentially deadly. High blood pressure is the leading cause of stroke and can contribute to heart and kidney disease. So be sure to monitor your blood pressure and discuss with your physician ways to lower high blood pressure.

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NOW ENROLLING How to find 2014-2015 SCHOOL YEAR time for fitness

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The Daily Herald • May 20, 2014 • HEALTHMIND&BODY

HEALTHMIND&BODY • May 20, 2014 • The Daily Herald

Valley Center for Life Enrichment, PLLC

is a private outpatient counseling center locally owned in the heart of the Roanoke Valley. Our therapists are trained in various areas of expertise and serve clients of all ages including very young children and the elderly.

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Valley Center serves clients with Medicaid, Medicare, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Tricare, other insurance, and offers a plan for the uninsured and under-insured. We accept all major credit cards. Valley Center is located on the 2nd floor of the Patterson Mansion, 608 Jackson Street, Roanoke Rapids, NC.

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A new study in the journal Neurology suggests that working out is the most effective way to protect the brain from Alzheimer’s disease. Researchers studied roughly 700 study participants from Scotland, all of whom were born in 1936. Each participant reported their levels of leisure and physical activity at age 70, rating their physical activity on a scale from moving only to perform household chores to participating in heavy exercise or competitive sport several times per week. Participants were also asked to rate how often they engaged in social or intellectual activities. At age 73, participants received an MRI to measure certain biomarkers in their brains. Those who participated in more physical activity showed less brain shrinkage and fewer white matter lesions, both of which can be signs of Alzheimer’s disease. And while social and intellectual activities can be beneficial in preventing Alzheimer’s disease, the study found that social and intellectual engagement weren’tas helpful to the brain as physical exercise. The types of physical exercise most beneficial to the brain are still being studied, though information presented at the 2012 Alzheimer’s Association’s International Conference suggested that strength training is perhaps the most effective form of exercise.

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Can’t get to your doctor during the day?

Did you know? There are a host of ways fitness-minded folks can burn a few extra calories, even if they don’t know they’re doing it. For instance, those who can’t sit still and tend to have a nervous personality may burn more calories than a person who is calm. That’s because fidgeting can burn up to 350 calories a day. Laughing more can also burn extra calories. Scientists estimate that laughing 100 times is equivalent to a 10-minute workout on a rowing machine. Remember to get some shut-eye as well. Research has found that dieters who get adequate sleep can more easily shed weight. For those who are feeling amorous, engaging in intimate behavior can burn up to 360 calories an hour.

A review published in a 2010 issue of the medical journal Pediatrics found that children benefited from weight training. In the review, researchers from the Institute of Training Science and Sports Informatics in Cologne, Germany, analyzed studies that focused on children and weightlifting. The review looked at studies going as far back as 60 years, finding that children and adolescents who lifted weights grew stronger. Those who participated in strength training twice per week gained more strength than those who participated just once per week. These findings contradict a longstanding belief that children do not actually get stronger. But while children and adolescents may be getting stronger, researchers found that they do not add as much bulk or obvious muscle mass as adults. Instead, researchers feel the strength changes in children and adolescents stem more from neurological changes that make their nervous systems and muscles interact more efficiently. Though parentshave long worried that strength training will stunt their children’s growth, researchers now feel that properly supervised strength training will not stunt growth or lead to growth-plate injuries and will perhaps even reduce their risk of injury as opposed to increasing that risk.

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HEALTHMIND&BODY • May 20, 2014 • The Daily Herald

The Daily Herald • May 20, 2014 • HEALTHMIND&BODY

The basics of boosting metabolism

Men and women looking to shed a few pounds and keep those pounds off often look for ways to boost their metabolisms. Some may not know just what metabolism means, and though it is a complicated combination of processes, metabolism is perhaps best explained as the sum of those processes, each of which is instituted to convert food into energy. So it’s no surprise that so many people, especially men and women whose metabolisms have begun to slow down, want to boost their metabolism and turn that food into energy more quickly. Though metabolism is a collection of complicated processes, boosting metabolism can be rather easy. The following are a handful of ways to do so, which can help men and women reach their fitness goals. * Eat the right foods and eat more often. Many adults have been turned on to the concept of grazing, an approach to diet wherein adherents eat small portions of food every two to three hours instead of the more traditional three square meals per day. But grazing is only effective when men and women eat the right foods. Each small meal should still have nutritional value just as if it were a large meal. When eating smaller meals, include healthy sources of protein and fiber. Vegetables tend to be especially

who slept in a room kept at 66 F burned 7 percent more calories than those who slept in a room at 75 F. Sleeping in a cooler room may just be the easiest way for men and women to boost their metabolisms.

Boosting metabolism and shedding extra pounds is a goal for many men and women. But while metabolism is a complex set of processes, the various ways to effectively boost that metabolism can be quite simple.

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Strength training to build lean muscle is one way men and women can boost their metabolisms.

beneficial because they are high in fiber, a nondigestible carbohydrate that is hard for the body to break down. As the body works hard to break down fiber, it’s burning energy and boosting its metabolism along the way. Fish is another potentially beneficial food for those looking to boost their metabolisms, as studies have shown that the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oils increase the levels of fat-burning enzymes in the body while decreasing the body’s level offat-storage enzymes. Eating more often benefits the body because doing so stimulates metabolism, reassuring the body that food will be coming on a regular basis. When meals are skipped or there are long intervals between meals, the body reacts as if it might run out of food and begins to store fat. * Add some lean muscle. Lean muscle can boost metabolism, so a workout dominated by cardiovascular exercise won’t have as positive an impact on metabolism as one that includes a combination of weight training and aerobic exercise. When muscles are worked hard, the body needs to work hard to recover and rebuild those muscles, burning more calories and boosting metabolism as a result. * Don’t believe everything you read or hear. Suggestions abound as to ways to significantly improve metabolism. Unfortunately, many of these suggestions boost metabolism but not enough to help people lose weight, which is the ultimate goal of many people looking to boost their metabolisms. For example, green tea has its proponents who feel it can have a significant impact on metabolism thanks to EGCG, a compound found in the tea that has been proven to elevate metabolism. However, the impact of EGCG on boosting metabolism is negligible, and therefore won’t make much of an impact on a person’s weight. The same can be said about capsaicin, an active component found in chili peppers that some feel boosts metabolism enough to promote weight loss. Though capsaicin can boost metabolism slightly, studies have shown that influence is not significant enough to affect a person’s weight. * Don’t get too comfortable. Modern technology may be a reason why waist sizes are getting bigger. Heating and cooling systems may be must-have items, but when the body is too comfortable, it burns less energy to stay warm in the winter or comfortably cool in the summer. A study from the National Institute of Health Clinical Center found that people

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Healthy ways to banish belly fat Belly fat is often considered more of a cosmetic issue than a health issue. But few outside of the medical or fitness communities may know that belly fat is not only unsightly but unhealthy as well. Excessive belly fat can increase a person’s risk of developing type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, and even certain cancers, including breast cancer and colon cancer. So while many people may want to reduce their belly fat for cosmetic purposes, they can also use improving their overall health as a motivating factor when attempting to trim their waistlines. The following are a few healthy ways to reduce belly fat. * Adopt a healthy diet. Belly fat is often the first victim when men and women adopt a healthy diet and begin to lose weight. Researcher Kristen Hairston, MD, an assistant professor of endocrinology and metabolism at Wake Forest School of Medicine, found that people who ate 10 grams of soluble fiber per day but made no other changes to their diet built up less fat over time than others. In addition to fiber, you should include fruits, vegetables and lean proteins in your diet. These foods will help you feel more full, which will curb your hunger and, as a result, reduce your caloric intake. * Get some rest. A good night’s sleep, which is at least

seven hours of sleep each night, has been shown to reduce fat over an extended period of time. Though the exact relationship between sleep and belly fat is unknown, a lack of sleep can force men and women to look to sugary beverages or snacks to provide a boost during the day. Such drinks and snacks can cause weight gain, especially among those people who routinely fail to get a good night’s sleep. * Get off the couch and exercise. Exercise is another effective way to reduce belly fat. Numerous studies have shown the positive effect that daily, vigorous exercise can have on overall health. For example, a study conducted by researchers at Duke University found that 30 minutes of vigorous aerobic exercise, which includes jogging or working out on a cardiovascular machine, such as an elliptical or a treadmill, four times per week can reduce fat and slow down the buildup of fat over time. Those who want to reduce belly fat will likely need to emphasize vigorous exercise. While those hoping to prevent the buildup of belly fat should know that studies have shown, when coupled with a healthy diet, moderate activity, which includes anything that raises your heart rate, three times per week may be enough to slow down fat buildup.

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The Daily Herald • May 20, 2014 • HEALTHMIND&BODY

HEALTHMIND&BODY • May 20, 2014 • The Daily Herald

These snacks pack an energetic punch

Many adults find themselves feeling drowsy in the hours after they eat lunch. Aheavy lunch, a staid office atmosphere or a combination of the two can make professionals feel sleepy as the workday winds down. Though some might opt for a second cup of coffee, the immediate energy boost provided by caffeine quickly wears off, leaving men and women feeling even more tired as a result. Oftentimes, the right mid-afternoon snack can provide the energy boosts adults need to stay productive throughout the workday. The following are a handful of healthy snacks that tend to provide a lot of energy. * Greek yogurt: Greek yogurt has become increasingly popular in recent years, as more and more people are opting for this snack that’s rich in calcium, protein, phosphorous, and zinc. Traditional yogurt tends to provide a quick energy boost, as it is generally easy to digest, before that boost quickly fades. Greek yogurt is thicker than traditional yogurt, so it does not digest so easily, producing more sustained energy levels as a result. However, Greek yogurt is also loaded with protein, helping men and women feel fuller longer. That can be beneficial for those who want to lose weight, as the feeling of fullness that Greek yogurt provides means those who eat it are less likely to eat more snacks throughout the day. * Whole grains: Whole grain snacks are loaded with energizing ingredients, including fiber, iron, magnesium, and protein. Whole wheat snacks are also loaded with Bvitamins, which help people fight fatigue and stabilize blood sugar levels. In addition, the body takes longer to absorb the complex carbohydrates found in whole wheat snacks, which means the body can maintain stable blood sugar levels for extended periods of time, and that leads to a long-lasting energy boost. White bread and simple carbohydrates provide an immediate, yet temporary, energy boost when people’s blood sugar levels spike. But once that initial energy boost subsides, men and women will be left feeling fatigued. * Edamame: Many people may know edamame from recipes, but few might know edamame can be an energy-boosting snack as well. Edamame are boiled soybeans that are rich in protein, iron, omega-3 fatty acids, and fiber. Each of these things helps the body sustain energy levels. In addition, edamame is also packed with a trace mineral known as molybdenum that helps cells function properly while enhancing alertness and improving concentration. * Almonds: Almonds are loaded with ingredients that increase energy levels, including vitamin E, phosphorous, vitamin B2, and magnesium, which serves numerous beneficial functions, including aiding in the production of energy and relieving stress and anxiety. Because they are rich in protein and fiber, almonds take longer for the body to digest, which means energy levels will stay up for longer periods of time than they would for those snacks that are easily digested. Almonds also contain healthy fats that curb appetite, making it less likely that men and women who snack on almonds will overeat and find themselves fighting the fatigue that’s often a byproduct of overeating.

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Get on the road to recovery by identifying depression Nearly everyone feels down at one point or another. But when feelings of sadness stretch on and are accompanied by other symptoms, normal sadness might have given way to depression. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate depression affects one in 10 American adults at different levels, while Statistics Canada says around 5 percent of Canadians have reported symptoms that meet the criteria for a mood disorder, including depression. Many sufferers of depression believe it is a personal weakness and something they should be able to control, but mood disorders are recognized mental illnesses that say nothing about a person’s strength of character. Often brought on unexpectedly, mood disorders like depression cannot be traced to a single root cause. Many within the medical community believe depression is genetic, and oftentimes doctors treating patients for depression discover a history of depression among their patients’ immediate family members.

Many different genes may act in combination to cause a mood disorder. In 2011, a British team isolated a gene that appears to be prevalent in families in which multiple members suffer from depression. The chromosome, 3p25-26, was found in more than 800 families with recurrent depression. External factors also can play a role in the onset of depression. According to the CDC, certain groups are more likely to meet criteria for depression than others. These include women, people ages 45-64, AfricanAmericans, Hispanics, and people with less than a high school education. There are unique symptoms associated with depression. Not every person with this mood disorder will exhibit each and every symptom, but the following symptoms appearing together is often an indicator of depression:

* feelings of sadness and loss

harm

* feelings of irritability

People exhibiting symptoms of depression should first reach out to their primary care physicians, who can begin a preliminary diagnosis and look for symptoms indicative of depression. A doctor also can perform blood work to rule out other conditions that may be contributing to problems with mood, such as hormonal changes or illnesses. Some doctors may refer patients to a mental health professional who is much more qualified to treat mood disorders. A mental health professional will likely conduct an interview with the patient and pay considerable attention to the patient’s medical history. Gaining a stronger grasp of a patient’s symptoms enables doctors to prescribe the most effective courses of treatment. Treatments range from medication to talk therapy to cognitive-behavioral

* loss of pleasure in usually enjoyed activities * changes in sleeping patterns, such as insomnia or sleeping too much * difficulty concentrating * frequent headaches * noticeable lack of motivation * anxiety and panic attacks * withdrawal from friends and family * inability to make decisions * recurring thoughts of suicide or self-

therapy. Those who do not respond to more conventional treatments can discuss further options with their doctors. Patients who are prescribed an antidepressant medication should expect several weeks to pass before the medication is fully effective. Antidepressants are not universally effective, and people being treated for depression or another mood disorder should not grow discouraged if one course of treatment is ineffective. Many treatment options are available to people with mood disorders. Those who think they may be suffering from depression should first remember that they are not alone. Millions of people have depression at points in their lives or may experience recurrences of the condition. Visiting a doctor promptly can help sufferers of mood disorders address their conditions more quickly.


8

HEALTHMIND&BODY • May 20, 2014 • The Daily Herald

Can human growth hormone cheat aging? Human growth hormone performs a number of biological functions and is in abundance when children and adolescents are growing. But HGH has recently become a coveted cosmetic supplement designed to improve metabolism, fend off weight gain and restore the vigor of youth. The off-label use of HGH has resulted in a multi-billion dollar industry but not without significant controversy. HGH, also known as somatotropin or somatropin, is a natural substance excreted by the pituitary gland in the brain. It stimulates growth and cell reproduction and regeneration. As a person ages, his or her HGH levels decrease. In certain instances, doctors will prescribe HGH to treat children’s growth disorders or deficiencies in adults. However, some patients seek it for improved vitality or as an anabolic agent to improve athletic performance. Many people view HGH as the fountain of youth because it can help diminish wrinkles and the physical signs of aging while improving energy levels and helping fight depression. But while HGH has its upside, there is still much to be learned about this complicated hormone.

Several small clinical studies have looked at HGH in the injectable form. Many tout the efficacy of the hormone in growing muscles and bone, improving skin, ramping Several people use human growth hormone to lose up sexual drive, and helping with weight loss. According weight and prevent the physical effects off aging. to Stuart Weinerman, M.D., Division of Endocrinology at North Shore/Long Island Jewish Hospital, and Assistant Professor of Medicine at Hofstra/North Shore LIJ School of Another pitfall of injectable HGH is that it is an artificial Medicine, the largest review of trials with HGH demonstrate source of the hormone. When the body becomes accusthat long-term use of growth hormone caused an average tomed to receiving HGH from an external source, the pituitary 2.3 kilogram (about 5 lbs) loss of weight, 2.6 kg (5.6 lbs) gland may decrease the natural production of HGH. Should a loss of fat, 1.4 kg (3 lbs) increase in lean body mass and no person cease therapy, he or she may find that they are now consistent change in bone density. Patients using HGH tend deficient in the hormone. to feel better, too, as seen in quality of life scores. But these The Mayo Clinic says that HGH isn’t the magical answer benefits often come at a cost. for staving off aging. The organization warns that there is One significant disadvantage of HGH injections is that little evidence that taking HGH supplements provides any they are very expensive. Over the course of a year, men and measurable benefit for healthy individuals and it may actually women receiving HGH injections can expect to pay thouresult in side effects that are unhealthy. These can include sands of dollars for those injections, particularly if they are carpal tunnel syndrome, swelling in the arms and legs, joint not covered by insurance. Injections also can only be given pain, muscle pain, and enlargement of breast tissue in men. by a licensed medical practitioner, requiring multiple trips to HGH also may contribute to conditions such as diabetes and the doctor during the course of therapy. heart disease.

The Daily Herald • May 20, 2014 • HEALTHMIND&BODY

9

Healthy habits How to use diet to supplement your workout routine But many people incorrectly assume that a healthy diet is one devoid of taste. That simply isn’t true. In fact, a healthy diet does not necessarily restrict foods, but how frequently some of those riskier foods can be consumed. The following are some of the steps men and women can take to ensure their workouts aren’t losing their effectiveness due to unhealthy eating habits. * Start the day off with a healthy breakfast. Many foods make healthy breakfast options, including fruit and whole-grain cereals. Unfortunately, onthe-go men and women often reach for what’s readily available, and what’s readily available isn’t necessarily healthy. Avoid breakfast sandwiches that are high in fat and calories, and avoid eating fried foods for breakfast. For those men and women who prefer to workout first thing in the morning, keep in mind it’s important to eat before working out, even if those workouts are in the wee hours of the morning. Working out on an empty stomach can cause feelings of lightheadedness. In addition, many people are sluggish if they exercise on an empty stomach, which can make workouts less effective. If eating before a morning A healthy breakfast is a great way to supplement a workout isn’t your thing, consider going with a small snack before beginning your workout routine. routine. If even that is not ideal, then consider a snack before bedtime. However, Men and women who have successfully this option won’t necessarily prove effecadopted healthy lifestyles know full well tive, as your body might just consume all that combining exercise with a healthy diet of the energy this snack provides while is the key to getting and staying healthy. you’re asleep. Simply visiting the gym won’t work if it’s * Reassess your snacking habits. If not coupled with a healthy diet.

greasy potato chips or sleep-inducing baked goods like brownies are your idea of the perfect snack, then it’s time to reassess your snacking habits. Snacks should not induce sleep, but provide a little extra energy and reduce any hunger pangs. Fresh fruit, yogurt, energy bars, and even whole-grain crackers with a little peanut butter each make for a healthy snack that won’t zap you of valuable energy during the day. * Let food help your muscles recover. Some people feel they might negate the positive effects of their workout if they eat immediately after exercising. That’s not necessarily true. In fact, foods that contain protein and carbohydrates can actually help your muscles recover after a workout. Yogurt (Greek yogurt is packed with protein), fruit, dried fruit, and nuts make great post-workout food options, and none will negate the effect of that grueling workout you just finished. In general, the longer you wait to eat after exercising, the longer it will take your muscles to recover. * Stay hydrated. Water is an essential part of a healthy diet, and it’s even more essential before, during and after a workout. When exercising, your body will lose a significant amount of water, which can cause the body to dehydrate. Drink water before and after your workout, and don’t forget to focus on staying hydrated during your workout as well. Daily exercise is essential to longterm health. But all those hours in the gym won’t pay off if they’re not combined with healthy eating habits.


8

HEALTHMIND&BODY • May 20, 2014 • The Daily Herald

Can human growth hormone cheat aging? Human growth hormone performs a number of biological functions and is in abundance when children and adolescents are growing. But HGH has recently become a coveted cosmetic supplement designed to improve metabolism, fend off weight gain and restore the vigor of youth. The off-label use of HGH has resulted in a multi-billion dollar industry but not without significant controversy. HGH, also known as somatotropin or somatropin, is a natural substance excreted by the pituitary gland in the brain. It stimulates growth and cell reproduction and regeneration. As a person ages, his or her HGH levels decrease. In certain instances, doctors will prescribe HGH to treat children’s growth disorders or deficiencies in adults. However, some patients seek it for improved vitality or as an anabolic agent to improve athletic performance. Many people view HGH as the fountain of youth because it can help diminish wrinkles and the physical signs of aging while improving energy levels and helping fight depression. But while HGH has its upside, there is still much to be learned about this complicated hormone.

Several small clinical studies have looked at HGH in the injectable form. Many tout the efficacy of the hormone in growing muscles and bone, improving skin, ramping Several people use human growth hormone to lose up sexual drive, and helping with weight loss. According weight and prevent the physical effects off aging. to Stuart Weinerman, M.D., Division of Endocrinology at North Shore/Long Island Jewish Hospital, and Assistant Professor of Medicine at Hofstra/North Shore LIJ School of Another pitfall of injectable HGH is that it is an artificial Medicine, the largest review of trials with HGH demonstrate source of the hormone. When the body becomes accusthat long-term use of growth hormone caused an average tomed to receiving HGH from an external source, the pituitary 2.3 kilogram (about 5 lbs) loss of weight, 2.6 kg (5.6 lbs) gland may decrease the natural production of HGH. Should a loss of fat, 1.4 kg (3 lbs) increase in lean body mass and no person cease therapy, he or she may find that they are now consistent change in bone density. Patients using HGH tend deficient in the hormone. to feel better, too, as seen in quality of life scores. But these The Mayo Clinic says that HGH isn’t the magical answer benefits often come at a cost. for staving off aging. The organization warns that there is One significant disadvantage of HGH injections is that little evidence that taking HGH supplements provides any they are very expensive. Over the course of a year, men and measurable benefit for healthy individuals and it may actually women receiving HGH injections can expect to pay thouresult in side effects that are unhealthy. These can include sands of dollars for those injections, particularly if they are carpal tunnel syndrome, swelling in the arms and legs, joint not covered by insurance. Injections also can only be given pain, muscle pain, and enlargement of breast tissue in men. by a licensed medical practitioner, requiring multiple trips to HGH also may contribute to conditions such as diabetes and the doctor during the course of therapy. heart disease.

The Daily Herald • May 20, 2014 • HEALTHMIND&BODY

9

Healthy habits How to use diet to supplement your workout routine But many people incorrectly assume that a healthy diet is one devoid of taste. That simply isn’t true. In fact, a healthy diet does not necessarily restrict foods, but how frequently some of those riskier foods can be consumed. The following are some of the steps men and women can take to ensure their workouts aren’t losing their effectiveness due to unhealthy eating habits. * Start the day off with a healthy breakfast. Many foods make healthy breakfast options, including fruit and whole-grain cereals. Unfortunately, onthe-go men and women often reach for what’s readily available, and what’s readily available isn’t necessarily healthy. Avoid breakfast sandwiches that are high in fat and calories, and avoid eating fried foods for breakfast. For those men and women who prefer to workout first thing in the morning, keep in mind it’s important to eat before working out, even if those workouts are in the wee hours of the morning. Working out on an empty stomach can cause feelings of lightheadedness. In addition, many people are sluggish if they exercise on an empty stomach, which can make workouts less effective. If eating before a morning A healthy breakfast is a great way to supplement a workout isn’t your thing, consider going with a small snack before beginning your workout routine. routine. If even that is not ideal, then consider a snack before bedtime. However, Men and women who have successfully this option won’t necessarily prove effecadopted healthy lifestyles know full well tive, as your body might just consume all that combining exercise with a healthy diet of the energy this snack provides while is the key to getting and staying healthy. you’re asleep. Simply visiting the gym won’t work if it’s * Reassess your snacking habits. If not coupled with a healthy diet.

greasy potato chips or sleep-inducing baked goods like brownies are your idea of the perfect snack, then it’s time to reassess your snacking habits. Snacks should not induce sleep, but provide a little extra energy and reduce any hunger pangs. Fresh fruit, yogurt, energy bars, and even whole-grain crackers with a little peanut butter each make for a healthy snack that won’t zap you of valuable energy during the day. * Let food help your muscles recover. Some people feel they might negate the positive effects of their workout if they eat immediately after exercising. That’s not necessarily true. In fact, foods that contain protein and carbohydrates can actually help your muscles recover after a workout. Yogurt (Greek yogurt is packed with protein), fruit, dried fruit, and nuts make great post-workout food options, and none will negate the effect of that grueling workout you just finished. In general, the longer you wait to eat after exercising, the longer it will take your muscles to recover. * Stay hydrated. Water is an essential part of a healthy diet, and it’s even more essential before, during and after a workout. When exercising, your body will lose a significant amount of water, which can cause the body to dehydrate. Drink water before and after your workout, and don’t forget to focus on staying hydrated during your workout as well. Daily exercise is essential to longterm health. But all those hours in the gym won’t pay off if they’re not combined with healthy eating habits.


10

The Daily Herald • May 20, 2014 • HEALTHMIND&BODY

HEALTHMIND&BODY • May 20, 2014 • The Daily Herald

These snacks pack an energetic punch

Many adults find themselves feeling drowsy in the hours after they eat lunch. Aheavy lunch, a staid office atmosphere or a combination of the two can make professionals feel sleepy as the workday winds down. Though some might opt for a second cup of coffee, the immediate energy boost provided by caffeine quickly wears off, leaving men and women feeling even more tired as a result. Oftentimes, the right mid-afternoon snack can provide the energy boosts adults need to stay productive throughout the workday. The following are a handful of healthy snacks that tend to provide a lot of energy. * Greek yogurt: Greek yogurt has become increasingly popular in recent years, as more and more people are opting for this snack that’s rich in calcium, protein, phosphorous, and zinc. Traditional yogurt tends to provide a quick energy boost, as it is generally easy to digest, before that boost quickly fades. Greek yogurt is thicker than traditional yogurt, so it does not digest so easily, producing more sustained energy levels as a result. However, Greek yogurt is also loaded with protein, helping men and women feel fuller longer. That can be beneficial for those who want to lose weight, as the feeling of fullness that Greek yogurt provides means those who eat it are less likely to eat more snacks throughout the day. * Whole grains: Whole grain snacks are loaded with energizing ingredients, including fiber, iron, magnesium, and protein. Whole wheat snacks are also loaded with Bvitamins, which help people fight fatigue and stabilize blood sugar levels. In addition, the body takes longer to absorb the complex carbohydrates found in whole wheat snacks, which means the body can maintain stable blood sugar levels for extended periods of time, and that leads to a long-lasting energy boost. White bread and simple carbohydrates provide an immediate, yet temporary, energy boost when people’s blood sugar levels spike. But once that initial energy boost subsides, men and women will be left feeling fatigued. * Edamame: Many people may know edamame from recipes, but few might know edamame can be an energy-boosting snack as well. Edamame are boiled soybeans that are rich in protein, iron, omega-3 fatty acids, and fiber. Each of these things helps the body sustain energy levels. In addition, edamame is also packed with a trace mineral known as molybdenum that helps cells function properly while enhancing alertness and improving concentration. * Almonds: Almonds are loaded with ingredients that increase energy levels, including vitamin E, phosphorous, vitamin B2, and magnesium, which serves numerous beneficial functions, including aiding in the production of energy and relieving stress and anxiety. Because they are rich in protein and fiber, almonds take longer for the body to digest, which means energy levels will stay up for longer periods of time than they would for those snacks that are easily digested. Almonds also contain healthy fats that curb appetite, making it less likely that men and women who snack on almonds will overeat and find themselves fighting the fatigue that’s often a byproduct of overeating.

IF YOU WANT TO LIVE DISEASE FREE YOU MUST HAVE HEALTHY TISSUE! Call today and schedule your nutrition consultation. Let us help you become the very best you can be, through diet and lifestyle changes.

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7

Get on the road to recovery by identifying depression Nearly everyone feels down at one point or another. But when feelings of sadness stretch on and are accompanied by other symptoms, normal sadness might have given way to depression. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate depression affects one in 10 American adults at different levels, while Statistics Canada says around 5 percent of Canadians have reported symptoms that meet the criteria for a mood disorder, including depression. Many sufferers of depression believe it is a personal weakness and something they should be able to control, but mood disorders are recognized mental illnesses that say nothing about a person’s strength of character. Often brought on unexpectedly, mood disorders like depression cannot be traced to a single root cause. Many within the medical community believe depression is genetic, and oftentimes doctors treating patients for depression discover a history of depression among their patients’ immediate family members.

Many different genes may act in combination to cause a mood disorder. In 2011, a British team isolated a gene that appears to be prevalent in families in which multiple members suffer from depression. The chromosome, 3p25-26, was found in more than 800 families with recurrent depression. External factors also can play a role in the onset of depression. According to the CDC, certain groups are more likely to meet criteria for depression than others. These include women, people ages 45-64, AfricanAmericans, Hispanics, and people with less than a high school education. There are unique symptoms associated with depression. Not every person with this mood disorder will exhibit each and every symptom, but the following symptoms appearing together is often an indicator of depression:

* feelings of sadness and loss

harm

* feelings of irritability

People exhibiting symptoms of depression should first reach out to their primary care physicians, who can begin a preliminary diagnosis and look for symptoms indicative of depression. A doctor also can perform blood work to rule out other conditions that may be contributing to problems with mood, such as hormonal changes or illnesses. Some doctors may refer patients to a mental health professional who is much more qualified to treat mood disorders. A mental health professional will likely conduct an interview with the patient and pay considerable attention to the patient’s medical history. Gaining a stronger grasp of a patient’s symptoms enables doctors to prescribe the most effective courses of treatment. Treatments range from medication to talk therapy to cognitive-behavioral

* loss of pleasure in usually enjoyed activities * changes in sleeping patterns, such as insomnia or sleeping too much * difficulty concentrating * frequent headaches * noticeable lack of motivation * anxiety and panic attacks * withdrawal from friends and family * inability to make decisions * recurring thoughts of suicide or self-

therapy. Those who do not respond to more conventional treatments can discuss further options with their doctors. Patients who are prescribed an antidepressant medication should expect several weeks to pass before the medication is fully effective. Antidepressants are not universally effective, and people being treated for depression or another mood disorder should not grow discouraged if one course of treatment is ineffective. Many treatment options are available to people with mood disorders. Those who think they may be suffering from depression should first remember that they are not alone. Millions of people have depression at points in their lives or may experience recurrences of the condition. Visiting a doctor promptly can help sufferers of mood disorders address their conditions more quickly.


6

HEALTHMIND&BODY • May 20, 2014 • The Daily Herald

The Daily Herald • May 20, 2014 • HEALTHMIND&BODY

The basics of boosting metabolism

Men and women looking to shed a few pounds and keep those pounds off often look for ways to boost their metabolisms. Some may not know just what metabolism means, and though it is a complicated combination of processes, metabolism is perhaps best explained as the sum of those processes, each of which is instituted to convert food into energy. So it’s no surprise that so many people, especially men and women whose metabolisms have begun to slow down, want to boost their metabolism and turn that food into energy more quickly. Though metabolism is a collection of complicated processes, boosting metabolism can be rather easy. The following are a handful of ways to do so, which can help men and women reach their fitness goals. * Eat the right foods and eat more often. Many adults have been turned on to the concept of grazing, an approach to diet wherein adherents eat small portions of food every two to three hours instead of the more traditional three square meals per day. But grazing is only effective when men and women eat the right foods. Each small meal should still have nutritional value just as if it were a large meal. When eating smaller meals, include healthy sources of protein and fiber. Vegetables tend to be especially

who slept in a room kept at 66 F burned 7 percent more calories than those who slept in a room at 75 F. Sleeping in a cooler room may just be the easiest way for men and women to boost their metabolisms.

Boosting metabolism and shedding extra pounds is a goal for many men and women. But while metabolism is a complex set of processes, the various ways to effectively boost that metabolism can be quite simple.

THE

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Strength training to build lean muscle is one way men and women can boost their metabolisms.

beneficial because they are high in fiber, a nondigestible carbohydrate that is hard for the body to break down. As the body works hard to break down fiber, it’s burning energy and boosting its metabolism along the way. Fish is another potentially beneficial food for those looking to boost their metabolisms, as studies have shown that the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oils increase the levels of fat-burning enzymes in the body while decreasing the body’s level offat-storage enzymes. Eating more often benefits the body because doing so stimulates metabolism, reassuring the body that food will be coming on a regular basis. When meals are skipped or there are long intervals between meals, the body reacts as if it might run out of food and begins to store fat. * Add some lean muscle. Lean muscle can boost metabolism, so a workout dominated by cardiovascular exercise won’t have as positive an impact on metabolism as one that includes a combination of weight training and aerobic exercise. When muscles are worked hard, the body needs to work hard to recover and rebuild those muscles, burning more calories and boosting metabolism as a result. * Don’t believe everything you read or hear. Suggestions abound as to ways to significantly improve metabolism. Unfortunately, many of these suggestions boost metabolism but not enough to help people lose weight, which is the ultimate goal of many people looking to boost their metabolisms. For example, green tea has its proponents who feel it can have a significant impact on metabolism thanks to EGCG, a compound found in the tea that has been proven to elevate metabolism. However, the impact of EGCG on boosting metabolism is negligible, and therefore won’t make much of an impact on a person’s weight. The same can be said about capsaicin, an active component found in chili peppers that some feel boosts metabolism enough to promote weight loss. Though capsaicin can boost metabolism slightly, studies have shown that influence is not significant enough to affect a person’s weight. * Don’t get too comfortable. Modern technology may be a reason why waist sizes are getting bigger. Heating and cooling systems may be must-have items, but when the body is too comfortable, it burns less energy to stay warm in the winter or comfortably cool in the summer. A study from the National Institute of Health Clinical Center found that people

Horn Chiropractic may be able to stop your pain & help you regain your health without drugs or surgery 400 D. Becker Drive • Roanoke Rapids, NC • 252-537-2425

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Healthy ways to banish belly fat Belly fat is often considered more of a cosmetic issue than a health issue. But few outside of the medical or fitness communities may know that belly fat is not only unsightly but unhealthy as well. Excessive belly fat can increase a person’s risk of developing type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, and even certain cancers, including breast cancer and colon cancer. So while many people may want to reduce their belly fat for cosmetic purposes, they can also use improving their overall health as a motivating factor when attempting to trim their waistlines. The following are a few healthy ways to reduce belly fat. * Adopt a healthy diet. Belly fat is often the first victim when men and women adopt a healthy diet and begin to lose weight. Researcher Kristen Hairston, MD, an assistant professor of endocrinology and metabolism at Wake Forest School of Medicine, found that people who ate 10 grams of soluble fiber per day but made no other changes to their diet built up less fat over time than others. In addition to fiber, you should include fruits, vegetables and lean proteins in your diet. These foods will help you feel more full, which will curb your hunger and, as a result, reduce your caloric intake. * Get some rest. A good night’s sleep, which is at least

seven hours of sleep each night, has been shown to reduce fat over an extended period of time. Though the exact relationship between sleep and belly fat is unknown, a lack of sleep can force men and women to look to sugary beverages or snacks to provide a boost during the day. Such drinks and snacks can cause weight gain, especially among those people who routinely fail to get a good night’s sleep. * Get off the couch and exercise. Exercise is another effective way to reduce belly fat. Numerous studies have shown the positive effect that daily, vigorous exercise can have on overall health. For example, a study conducted by researchers at Duke University found that 30 minutes of vigorous aerobic exercise, which includes jogging or working out on a cardiovascular machine, such as an elliptical or a treadmill, four times per week can reduce fat and slow down the buildup of fat over time. Those who want to reduce belly fat will likely need to emphasize vigorous exercise. While those hoping to prevent the buildup of belly fat should know that studies have shown, when coupled with a healthy diet, moderate activity, which includes anything that raises your heart rate, three times per week may be enough to slow down fat buildup.

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The Daily Herald • May 20, 2014 • HEALTHMIND&BODY

HEALTHMIND&BODY • May 20, 2014 • The Daily Herald

Valley Center for Life Enrichment, PLLC

is a private outpatient counseling center locally owned in the heart of the Roanoke Valley. Our therapists are trained in various areas of expertise and serve clients of all ages including very young children and the elderly.

Valley Center offers individual, family, couples and substance abuse counseling. We do assessments for psychological and psychiatric referrals as well.

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Valley Center serves clients with Medicaid, Medicare, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Tricare, other insurance, and offers a plan for the uninsured and under-insured. We accept all major credit cards. Valley Center is located on the 2nd floor of the Patterson Mansion, 608 Jackson Street, Roanoke Rapids, NC.

252.308.0744 • www.valleycenterforlifeenrichment.com

A new study in the journal Neurology suggests that working out is the most effective way to protect the brain from Alzheimer’s disease. Researchers studied roughly 700 study participants from Scotland, all of whom were born in 1936. Each participant reported their levels of leisure and physical activity at age 70, rating their physical activity on a scale from moving only to perform household chores to participating in heavy exercise or competitive sport several times per week. Participants were also asked to rate how often they engaged in social or intellectual activities. At age 73, participants received an MRI to measure certain biomarkers in their brains. Those who participated in more physical activity showed less brain shrinkage and fewer white matter lesions, both of which can be signs of Alzheimer’s disease. And while social and intellectual activities can be beneficial in preventing Alzheimer’s disease, the study found that social and intellectual engagement weren’tas helpful to the brain as physical exercise. The types of physical exercise most beneficial to the brain are still being studied, though information presented at the 2012 Alzheimer’s Association’s International Conference suggested that strength training is perhaps the most effective form of exercise.

Building Brighter Futures for Our Children "Smart Start works to ensure all children are healthy and ready to succeed when they enter school. Health, family support, parenting, child care and pre-kindergarten services are available throughout our community. We also support child care programs to ensure quality early education."

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Regional Child Care Resource and Referral Line: 1-888-285-0849

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Halifax - Warren Smart Start Partnership for Children, Inc. 1139 Roanoke Avenue PO Box 339 Roanoke Rapids, NC 27870 Phone: (252) 537-5621 Fax: (252) 537-9732)

Can’t get to your doctor during the day?

Did you know? There are a host of ways fitness-minded folks can burn a few extra calories, even if they don’t know they’re doing it. For instance, those who can’t sit still and tend to have a nervous personality may burn more calories than a person who is calm. That’s because fidgeting can burn up to 350 calories a day. Laughing more can also burn extra calories. Scientists estimate that laughing 100 times is equivalent to a 10-minute workout on a rowing machine. Remember to get some shut-eye as well. Research has found that dieters who get adequate sleep can more easily shed weight. For those who are feeling amorous, engaging in intimate behavior can burn up to 360 calories an hour.

A review published in a 2010 issue of the medical journal Pediatrics found that children benefited from weight training. In the review, researchers from the Institute of Training Science and Sports Informatics in Cologne, Germany, analyzed studies that focused on children and weightlifting. The review looked at studies going as far back as 60 years, finding that children and adolescents who lifted weights grew stronger. Those who participated in strength training twice per week gained more strength than those who participated just once per week. These findings contradict a longstanding belief that children do not actually get stronger. But while children and adolescents may be getting stronger, researchers found that they do not add as much bulk or obvious muscle mass as adults. Instead, researchers feel the strength changes in children and adolescents stem more from neurological changes that make their nervous systems and muscles interact more efficiently. Though parentshave long worried that strength training will stunt their children’s growth, researchers now feel that properly supervised strength training will not stunt growth or lead to growth-plate injuries and will perhaps even reduce their risk of injury as opposed to increasing that risk.

5

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The Daily Herald • May 20, 2014 • HEALTHMIND&BODY

HEALTHMIND&BODY • May 20, 2014 • The Daily Herald

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For 65 years, Mental Health America and our affiliates across the country have led the observance of May is Mental Health Month by reaching millions of people through the media, local events and screenings. The 2014 May is Mental Health Month theme is “Mind Your Health.” Our goals are to build public recognition about the importance of mental health to overall health and wellness; inform people of the ways that the mind and body interact with each other; and provide tips and tools for taking positive actions to protect mental health and promote whole health.

Finding time to exercise is no small feat for many men and women. Obligations at home and at the office can make it hard to fit in a workout, a familiar quandary for men and women with multiple commitments. Though it’s not always easy to fit in a workout when juggling multiple responsibilities, men and women must consider the responsibility they have with regard to maintaining their physical and mental health. The United States Department of Health and Human Services advises that healthy adults get at least 150 minutes a week of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes a week of vigorous aerobic activity, and that such activity should be spread out over the course of the week. In addition, the DHHS also advises that healthy adults include strength training exercises in their workout regimens at least twice a week. Such a workout schedule can improve both physical and mental health, making it easier for men and women to handle their hectic schedules. While such recommendations may seem manageable, many men and women still feel as if there’s just not enough time in the day for them to incorporate a daily exercise regimen. The following are a few ways such men and women can find time for fitness. * Take a walking lunch. Many professionals have heard of a “working lunch,” but those strapped for time to exercise might want to take a walking lunch instead. Rather than sitting at your desk or in your favorite booth at a nearby restaurant on your lunch hour each day, consider squeezing in some time to walk during those 30-60 minutes you normally spend eating or catching up on office gossip with coworkers. Invite a few coworkers along, walking to and from your favorite restaurant or finding a nearby park and going for a quick walk. This is an easy way to squeeze in the recommended 30 minutes of moderate aerobic activity each day, and you will no doubt feel more energized after lunch than if you had simply eaten without exercising. * Exercise in the morning. Research has shown that men and women who exercise in the mornings exercise on a more consistent basis than those who exercise later in the day, including after leaving the office at the

end of the workday. When exercising in the early morning hours, men and women are less likely to encounter scheduling conflicts, as coworkers, colleagues and even the kids will likely still be asleep. That means fewer interrupted or missed workouts. * Prepare meals ahead of time. If working out in the morning simply won’t work out for you, then consider planning meals in advance so you can free up time between the office and dinner each night. For example, slow cookers and crockpots make it possible to start making dinner in the early morning and require little or no effort once you arrive home in the evening. Plan to cook a few meals each week in a slow cooker, which will free up time for you to workout when you would otherwise be preparing dinner. * Work while you workout. Smartphones and tablets have made it easier than ever to get work done while you’re away from work. This includes getting some work done while you’re getting in your weekly recommended aerobic activity on the treadmill, elliptical machine or exercise bike. Thanks to smartphones and tablets, you can now read and answer emails and work on some projects while you sweat away those extra pounds. * Get off the couch. Many men and women prefer to unwind on the couch as they catch up on their favorite television shows and movies. But such unwinding should not come at the expense of working out. Much like catching up on work at the gym, you also can catch up on your favorite shows and movies while at the gym. Many smartphones and tablets now have apps that allow users to access subscription streaming services, so users who can’t find time to exercise should take advantage of such apps and watch their favorite shows and movies from the treadmill instead of the couch. Readers who can comfortably read while exercising can follow a similar route and read on the elliptical instead of sitting sedentary in a chair as they make their way through the latest bestseller. Finding time to exercise can be difficult, but even the busiest men and women have several options at their disposal as they attempt to make fitness a bigger priority in their lives.

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Voted Reader’s Choice In Roanoke Valley Heart disease is one of the leading causes of death across the globe. According to the World Health Organization, ischaemic heart disease, in which blood supply to the heart is reduced, is the leading cause of death in middle- and high-income countries and the fourth-leading cause of death in low-income countries. Perhaps the most troubling fact about the prevalence of heart disease is that it can be largely preventable. The American Heart Association notes that there are several ways to easily improve heart health and avoid becoming one of the millions of people to succumb to heart disease. * Embrace aerobic exercise. Aerobic exercise is essential to cardiovascular health. Daily aerobic exercise, which can be as simple as walking around the neighborhood, can help men and women lower their blood pressure, maintain a healthy weight and lower their bad cholesterol,

which can circulate in the blood and cause blockages that can lead to heart attack. * Adopt a low-sodium diet that’s also low in cholesterol. Diet can be a friend or foe with regards to heart disease. A heart-friendly diet that’s low in sodium and cholesterol can help you maintain healthy cholesterol levels as well as a healthy blood pressure. * Monitor your blood pressure. A blood pressure reading is a staple of many doctor visits, but men and women should monitor their blood pressure even when they aren’t visiting their physicians. High blood pressure does not always produce symptoms, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t potentially deadly. High blood pressure is the leading cause of stroke and can contribute to heart and kidney disease. So be sure to monitor your blood pressure and discuss with your physician ways to lower high blood pressure.

Hospice Facts: • The patient and the family are in control of the Patient’s care. • Patients’ receive expert pain and symptom management. • When pain and other symptoms are effectively controlled, people not only feel better, they have a potential to live longer! • Reduces stress of traveling back and forth to hospital and/or Doctors’ visits!

• Decreased stress levels positively affects quality and length of life! • Your current Doctor is in charge of your care! • Our satisfaction surveys show that 60% of patients said they would have liked to have been referred earlier to hospice services. • Earlier referrals gives more opportunity to provide comprehensive care!

Help yourself or someone you know call us today for a free evaluation! 525 A - Becker Drive Roanoke Rapids • 252-535-1605 • www.communityhch.com

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The Daily Herald • May 20, 2014 • HEALTHMIND&BODY

HEALTHMIND&BODY • May 20, 2014 • The Daily Herald

The nutritive power of apples Who has not heard the old adage, “an apple a day keeps the doctor away”? It may seem unlikely that one fruit could be so effective at maintaining good health, but apples really are a super food. Apples are a member of the Rose family and are related to pears, peaches, apricots and plums. Though considered a fall fruit, apples can be enjoyed year-round thanks to commercial food production and importing. Apart from being sweet, sometimes sour and refreshingly crisp, apples pack a number of nutritional benefits. Research has shown that apples can help to reduce a person’s risk of heart disease and help those with diabetes. In addition, apples can help fight cancer and prevent dental problems. According to new information from long-running studies published in the British Medical Journal, eating at least two servings a week of whole fruit, particularly apples, blueberries or grapes, reduces a person’s risk for type 2 diabetes by around 23 percent. Apples are high in many antioxidants and, as a result, this makes them especially valuable at fighting illness. For example, the disease-fighting compounds in antioxidants have been shown to reduce the risk of certain cancers by neutralizing free radicals. Apples also are very high in fiber. Fiber is needed to help a person feel full and can also regulate digestive function. Fiber also can help reduce cholesterol by preventing the buildup of cholesterol-causing plaques in the blood vessels, improving cardiovascular function and possibly reducing risk of a stroke as a result. In addition to working their magic inside of the body, apples can have a noticeable impact on physical appearance as well. Apples are sometimes referred to as “nature’s toothbrushes” because they can brighten and clean the teeth. The crisp, abrasive texture stimulates the gums and removes debris from the teeth. What’s more, the natural mild acidity of apples helps to stimulate saliva production

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~ On the cover ~

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Identifying Depression

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Snacking Smart 4 How to find time for fitness 6 The basics of boosting metabolism that can rinse away germs that lead to plaque. An apple weighs in at under 100 calories per serving, making them a low-fat and ideal snack any time of the day. Because they are low in calories and full of fiber, apples can help men and women maintain a healthy weight. Because apples can be plagued by insects and parasites, some growers repeatedly spray the trees with pesti-

cides. It is adviseable to buy organic apples to avoid many of the pesticide dangers and to be able to safely eat the apples raw. There are more than 7,000 varieties of apples on the market today. With such variety, availability and health benefits, apples make a convenient and nutritious snack.

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14 The nutritive power of apples 15 Get the facts on stomach bugs XNLV156049

107 Smith Church Rd. Roanoke Rapids, NC 252-537-7010

139 Elams Rd. Near Food Lion Littleton, NC 252-586-3836

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The Daily Herald • May 20, 2014 • HEALTHMIND&BODY

HEALTHMIND&BODY • May 20, 2014 • The Daily Herald

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Get the facts on stomach bugs to feel better fast Few things can prove more painful or inconvenient than stomach bugs. Digestive tract illnesses can cause persons to spend many hours of the day running to restrooms while confining others to the house for extended periods of time. Though often temporary, stomach bugs can last several days to more than a week and they may lead to more dire situations if not properly treated.

or diarrhea last more than a few days. Doctors may take a stool sample to determine what’s behind the bug. In the event of a bacterial infection, an antibiotic may be needed to clear up the infection. Visiting a doctor when stomach problems persist is also beneficial because he or she may be able to rule out certain conditions, such as colitis, ulcers or Crohn’s disease.

Causes

Helpful hints

Stomach bugs are known as gastroenteritis, a condition characterized by an inflamed and irritated stomach and intestines. The Mayo Clinic says people are most likely to contract gastroenteritis after eating contaminated foods or drinking contaminated water. Sharing items, like utensils, with someone who is infected is another way to contract gastroenteritis. Viral gastroenteritis is caused by a virus that enters the body. However, bacteria and parasites also are responsible for stomach bug outbreaks. Viruses that trigger gastroenteritis include adenoviruses, rotaviruses, calciviruses, astroviruses, and noroviruses. Bacteria that can cause gastroenteritis include E. coli, salmonella, campylobacter, and shingella.

When a stomach bug strikes, it is best to refrain from eating, especially when vomiting regularly. Stick to clear broths and liquids, which are easy on the digestive system, while the stomach is irritated. Once vomiting has subsided, sufferers should opt for a bland diet. When plagued by diarrhea, the BRAT diet is adviseable. This acronym stands for Bananas, Rice, Applesauce, and Toast. These foods can help bind a person and are relatively easy to digest. Because a stomach bug often leads to dehydration, drink plenty of fluids. To restore salt and electrolyte balances, sports drinks are adviseable for adults, while a beverage like Pedialyte is best for children and the elderly. When symptoms begin to subside, sufferers can gradually add foods back into their diets. But men and women should avoid particularly spicy or heavy foods until they are convinced that they have fully recovered. Many people are tempted to turn to an anti-diarrheal medication at the first sign of a stomach bug. However, the side effects of gastroenteritis are the body’s method of ridding itself from whatever has brought on symptoms. Failure to let nature run its course could result in a rebound of symptoms or a longer-lasting sickness. To avoid suffering from

Symptoms Stomach bugs often strike suddenly. Sufferers may experience queasiness or nausea and a loss of appetite. Pain or bloating in the stomach also may occur. Vomiting and diarrhea often cause many people to suspect something is wrong, and some stomach conditions are also accompanied by fever, achiness and lethargy. Treatment Many people opt for a wait-and-see approach when struck with stomach bugs. Gastroenteritis often heals on its own. Some refer to it as a “24-hour-bug” and find that once the stomach has been purged clean, the offender no longer wreaks havoc on the body. But stomach bugs can be more persistent as well. Sufferers should visit a doctor if vomiting

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stomach bugs, men and women should consider the following tips. * Frequently wash your hands when preparing food and thoroughly cook foods, particularly meats, poultry and eggs, to reduce potential exposure to bacteria. * E. coli may be present on some fresh produce, so wash produce carefully before consumption. * Consider taking a probiotic supplement to increase the amount of good bacteria in your digestive tract. Yogurt also contains live cultures that are good at maintaining digestive health. * Avoid contact with people who claim to have the stomach flu. * Promptly consult a doctor if symptoms do not go away or if you have a high fever or blood in your stool. This may indicate a different illness. Stomach bugs are never enjoyable, but there are ways to manage the symptoms and get back on the road to recovery.

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Yvonne S. Elias, Owner

Becker Village Mall | 1620 E. 10th St. | Roanoke Rapids | 252-535-3636

NAGARJUNA YERRA, M.D. Board Certified Gastroenterologist

252.535.6478

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1007 Gregory Road • Roanoke Rapids



Health mind & body 2014