Exciting New Ways That Tech Can Help Manage Diabetes
Planning and organization are important for anyone wanting to live a healthy lifestyle, and for those with diabetes, the need is that much greater. After all, diabetes and heart disease almost always go hand in hand. Nothing can replace a knowledgeable medical team and regular check-ups, but there are some ways to improve the self-management portion of diabetes care with a little help from some new tech. Let’s take a look at some affordable technology that can help you or your loved one manage.
Insulin pens have been on the market since 1985 and have made diabetes management more practical and accessible when compared to using syringes. Now, Glooco explains this game-changing technology is even more sophisticated with the introduction of smartpens. Smartpens, like the InPen, help track and record data based on the use of a smart insulin pen and a connected app. The range of options and capabilities will depend on the type of pen you purchase and the plan you choose. However, any choice will make the process of taking insulin easier.
In general, smart pens offer a variety of different features such as dose calculation and reminders, as well as tracking and reporting data in the form of easy-to-read graphs and charts. Some have the ability to share data with select parties, such as a doctor or trusted family member, at the user’s discretion. Innovations like these help reduce human error, such as losing track of doses or miscalculations, so you can feel more secure in your diabetes care.
Between doctor visits, it may be useful to have a little extra support and guidance when it comes to diet, exercise, glucose monitoring, and more. That’s where virtual coaching comes in. Virtual coaching services for diabetes can help you or your loved one better understand and manage diabetes.
Professional coaches can guide you through ways you can take control and make informed decisions on various day-to-day choices. They can guide you in learning more about how different foods affect blood sugar, help with counting carbs, and do meal plans and meal analysis.
Exercise is another aspect of cardiovascular health and diabetes management, and a virtual diabetes coach can help with that, as well. Depending on which service you choose, there may even be an all-in-one option that would combine just about everything you need to aid with at-home diabetes management.
Fitness Trackers and Apps
Fitness trackers, such as the Fitbit and Apple Watch, have been growing in popularity, and as the technology advances, they are becoming even more helpful tools not just for tracking steps and activity levels, but other useful health metrics. The Fitbit performs functions such as sleep tracking, activity tracking, and heart rate monitoring. If you want something a little more low profile, the Motiv Ring tracks heart rate, physical activities, and sleep cycles all in a tiny device you can wear on a single finger.
Your own smartphone can also help you stay healthy in many ways. There’s no shortage of apps that you can install to stay on top of your blood sugar levels, heart rate, and other necessary parameters. Fitness apps that help you get a workout whenever and wherever you can are also varied and plenty. Get a handy stand to mount your phone with ease, and you’ll have fewer excuses to get moving.
Tech can help you stay on top of diabetes, your heart health, and more in exciting ways. With the help of new gadgets and apps right at our fingertips, health management is easier, safer, and more convenient than ever before. With a little extra support from coaches, trackers, and smart pens, you can spend less time worrying about diabetes and its complications, and spend more time doing what you love.
When it comes to mental health, what you eat can make a big difference. Research shows that a diet rich in foods like fruit, vegetables and seeds helps protect your mental health.
Making healthier food choices will improve your physical and mental health and fitness.
Eating high-quality foods that contain lots of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants nourishes the brain and protects it from oxidative stress — the “waste” (free radicals) produced when the body uses oxygen, which can damage cells.
Diets high in refined sugars are harmful to the brain. In addition to worsening your body’s regulation of insulin, they also promote inflammation and oxidative stress. Multiple studies have found a correlation between a diet high in refined sugars and impaired brain function and even a worsening of symptoms of mood disorders, such as depression.
Symptoms of depression dropped significantly among a group of young adults after they followed a Mediterranean-style pattern of eating for three weeks. Participants saw their depression “score” fall from the “moderate” range down to the “normal” range, and they reported lower levels of anxiety and stress too.
Alternatively, the depression scores among the control group of participants — who didn’t change their diets — didn’t budge. These participants continued to eat a diet higher in refined carbohydrates, processed foods and sugary foods and beverages. Their depression scores remained in the “moderate severity” range.
Participants who had a greater increase in fruit and vegetable intake showed the greatest improvement in depression symptoms.
Participants increased consumption of whole grains to a recommended three servings per day, as well as three servings per day of protein from eggs, tofu and beans. In addition, they were told to get at least three servings of fish per week.
As for dairy, the recommendation was three servings per day, unsweetened. Participants were also instructed to consume three tablespoons of nuts and seeds per day, as well as two tablespoons of olive oil per day, and were advised to add in spices, including turmeric and cinnamon.
Using a device called a spectrophotometer, the participants had their palms scanned. The device can detect the degree of yellowness in your skin, which correlates with your intake of carotenoids, which you get from eating fruits and vegetables.
Organisations such as Food and Behaviour Research are really helping to shape our understanding of how and what nutrition influences our minds! (www.fabresearch.org is seriously worth a look, there is a staggering archive of research there).
Here’s a look at specific foods and eating habits that will help boost your mental health!
Growing evidence suggests that omega-3 fatty acids (abundant in oily fish such as sardines, salmon, and mackerel) may have a role in brain functioning, with deficiencies in omega-3 fatty acids linked to mental health problems.
To increase your intake of omega-3 fatty acids, consume foods such as:
Wild Alaskan salmon
Other oily fish
Flax and chia seeds
Purslane (an herb)
In addition to whole foods, good sources of omega-3s are fish oil, flaxseed oil, and echium oil, but it’s a good idea to check with your healthcare provider first if you are pregnant, nursing, take medication, or have any concerns.
Probiotics are best known for their role in digestive health, but emerging research suggests that bacteria in the gut sends and receives signals to the brain (known as the gut-brain axis).
The majority of studies found positive effects of probiotics on depression symptoms.
Increase your intake of probiotics with foods including:
Take note, however, that it is possible for someone who is immunocompromised to contract an infection—fungemia or bacteremia—from probiotic supplements. Talk to your doctor before starting a course of probiotics.
Whole grains are important sources of B vitamins, nutrients vital for brain health. For example, thiamin (vitamin B1) is involved in turning glucose into energy, pantothenic acid (vitamin B5) is needed to produce the neurotransmitter acetylcholine (involved in learning and memory), vitamin B6 helps to convert the amino acid tryptophan into serotonin, and vitamin B12 is involved in the production of neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine, among others, all of which help to regulate mood.
Look for grains in their whole form, such as:
Whole grain foods can be confusing. A rule of thumb when reading food labels is that for every 5 grams of carbohydrate, a product should have at least one gram of dietary fiber to be considered whole grain.
Spinach and other green vegetables contain the B vitamin folate. Although the connection isn’t fully understood, low folate levels have been consistently associated with depression in research.
A study published in the Journal of Psychiatric Research in 2017, for instance, analyzed previous studies and found that people with depression had lower blood levels of folate and lower dietary intake of folate compared to those without depression.
Folate deficiency may impair the metabolism of serotonin, dopamine, and noradrenaline (neurotransmitters important for mood).
Folate-rich vegetables include:
Folate is also plentiful in beans and lentils, with a cup of cooked lentils providing 90 percent of the recommended daily allowance.
Don’t take folic acid supplements without consulting your health care provider. In some cases, it may cause adverse effects and there are potential risks for some people (such as those who have had colon polyps or cancer).
Enrich Your Diet With Foods High in Vitamin D
Known as the sunshine vitamin, this nutrient is made naturally in the body when skin is exposed to the sun’s ultraviolet B (UVB) rays. In the past few years, research has suggested that vitamin D may increase the levels of serotonin, one of the key neurotransmitters influencing our mood, and that deficiency may be linked with mood disorders, particularly seasonal affective disorder.
In addition, preliminary research suggests that vitamin D deficiency is a risk factor for depression in older adults.
Some people are at greater risk for a vitamin D deficiency. Darker skin, for instance, has more melanin, a substance that blocks ultraviolet rays.
Working indoors during the day, living further from the equator, or being in an area with greater air pollution also increase your risk of vitamin D deficiency.
Canned salmon with bones is rich in vitamin D and is also a source of omega-3 fatty acids. Look for Alaskan pink salmon or sockeye salmon with bones. Other foods include:
Foods that may be fortified with vitamin D (milk, soy milk, and orange juice)
Its a very rainy August day here in Mooncoin County Kilkenny in Ireland and we are all still in the middle of the terrible coronavirus global pandemic!
People are struggling to cope with the coronavirus pandemic after months of harsh lockdowns, widespread disease and economic suffering!
The number of people reporting adverse mental health or behavioral changes like drinking alcohol or drug use is on a perilous rise in recent months.
Markedly elevated prevalences of reported adverse mental and behavioral health conditions associated with the COVID-19 pandemic highlight the broad impact of the pandemic and the need to prevent and treat these conditions.
Most at risk are those who are already undergoing treatment for a previously diagnosed mental health condition!
Today I have just finished reading a heartbreaking insightful autobiography by Denise Welche called The Unwelcome Visitor which describes Denise’s life living with clinical depression, a debilitating and often a terminal illness which is greatly misunderstood in society!
I think this book should be read by people who suffer from depression , and also by the people close to them to enable them to understand and support.
Denise’s clinical depression started after the birth of her first child she had severe post natal depression.
Many women will experience mild mood changes after having a baby, known as the “baby blues”. This is normal and usually only lasts for a few days.
But severe post natal depression is very different from the “baby blues”. It’s a serious mental illness and should be treated as a medical emergency.
It’s sometimes can lead to puerperal psychosis or postnatal psychosis.
At the time there was not a lot of knowledge about post natal depression and how to treat it and it wasn’t until thirty years later that Denise received Hormone Replacement Therapy which greatly improved her depression symptoms!
Unfortunately there is no known cure for clinical depression but it can be managed in Denise’s case with HRT, Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, a healthy diet and completely avoiding alcohol and recreational drugs!
People diagnosed with schizophrenia may also ignore hygiene, avoid being around people, and lack motivation. The illness affects most areas of life and can severely impair people at school, work, and in relationships.
Once a label like schizophrenia is applied to a person, discrimination begins. This hardened opinion that the public has causes patients to feel isolated, widthdraw, they loose their friends and their sense of community and that can lead to suicide.
Increased illness and early death in those with psychosis are related to unhealthy lifestyle (poor diet, obesity, smoking, low physical activity), and the side-effects of antipsychotic drugs.
The weight gain and other metabolic disturbances that arise from antipsychotic treatment is a substantial issue in psychiatry.
Prevailing treatments revolve around antipsychotic medications. As useful as these are for some, unfortunately, they can yield poor results for others. A three-year study that tracked over 6,000 adults diagnosed with schizophreniashows just how poor. All patients were treated at academic medical centers and were taking antipsychotic medications. The study tracked three metrics: symptom relief, quality of life, and ability to function in society. Only 4 percent of those patients achieved full relief from the illness on all three measures. Clearly, we need new treatment ideas for schizophrenia.
Early detection and treatment of psychotic disorders, such as schizophrenia, is thought to be critical for maximising recovery.
Antipsychotics, even if they were a necessary intervention during a crisis, does not mean that a person needs to be on them for life.
The issues underlying psychosis, mania and sleep disorders can generally be addressed in ways that are far less toxic.
These drugs have many side effects that are unwelcome. Some antipsychotic side effects make mental conditions worse and sometimes the drug itself makes mental health worse.
Prescribing these medications to children puts them at risk, as one of the common side effects that can occur especially in the first month or two of treatment with these drugs is suicidal thoughts or behavior.
Researchers have found that in many cases, there were medical conditions that were mistaken as mental issues.
Another nutritional aspect of mental health that is very often overlooked is blood sugar management. It is a simple skill to master really, but the impact that it can have on your mind and mood is quite staggering. Basically different foods, because of their composition, will release their energy at different rates.
Pure glucose, for example, will send blood sugar up very rapidly and vigorously. Glucose is actually the benchmark against which all other foods are measured. It is the simplest form of sugar, so requires no digestive effort. It goes straight into circulation. Foods vary in their make up and complexity and certain factors will influence how rapidly foods release their energy. Fibre is one of the biggest factors. Let’s compare white and brown bread, for example.
Proper brown bread has all the fibre from the wheat husk and many brown breads have additional seeds and fibres added as well. White bread, on the other hand, has had all of the husks removed and the fibre content is drastically lower.
The fibre in the brown bread will simply make the sugars in the bread harder to get to and will require more digestive effort to release them. With the refined white bread, on the other hand, the lack of fibre makes the sugar much easier to get at. In the higher fibre food, the sugar is released at a slower, steady pace, whereas with refined foods it is released at a very rapid pace as it takes far less digestive effort to liberate the glucose. Another influence on this are the combinations in which you eat certain foods.
Adding protein to your carbohydrates for example will require a great deal more digestive effort to liberate the glucose, as proteins are digested more slowly so there is a lot more work for the digestive system to do when you have a combination of protein and carbohydrate. The result is a slow even drip-feeding of glucose into the bloodstream rather than a giant surge.
Why does any of this matter? Because, if you consume foods that flood your bloodstream with sugar, the initial feeling is rather pleasant. You get a high. But this barrage of sugar is no good for us at all and the body has very fast-acting, responsive ways of dealing with it. When it occurs, we rapidly secrete insulin. This hormone tells our cells to take in glucose as quickly as possible and put it to good use. If blood sugar stays that high for long it can cause damage. The problem is, when this happens, our blood sugar plummets and we get a sugar dip. This makes us feel tired, groggy, irritable and can make our moods spiral downwards. This is why balance is important!!!
While the physiology and so on may seem a tad complex, putting all of it into practice is rather straightforward.Here are the golden rules: GO WHOLESOME: It’s time to ditch the white refined grain products. White bread, white rice, white pasta: in the bin! Instead move over to whole grain versions. These have their fibre intact, so will be harder to digest and will release their sugars slowly. It is also worth bringing your overall intake down a little; we are all eating a few too many carbs.
FOOD COMBINE: Making better choices in terms of the carbohydrates that we eat is one part of the picture. The other part is how you compose your meals. Always aim to have a good-quality carbohydrate with a good source of protein. So, salmon with quinoa, scrambled eggs on toast, fish with vegetables and sweet potato wedges. You get the picture. By having a good source of protein, you slow down the release of the sugars from the meal, giving blood sugar a nice slow consistent drip-feeding,. Nice and simple.
Grilled halloumi with pomegranate quinoa salad Recipe.
This is a nice filling lunch, perfect for those days when you may not get a chance to eat until quite late and you want to fill up but keep it healthy, too.
It will stabilise your blood sugar and provide a B vitamin boost. Ready-prepared pomegranate is readily available in supermarkets now, so is hassle-free.
SERVES 1 50g quinoa 2 tbsp pomegranate seeds 1 tbsp pitted black olives, chopped leaves from a small bunch of parsley, chopped sea salt and freshly ground black pepper 4 slices of halloumi cheese, a little olive oil.
Place the quinoa in a saucepan and cover with boiling water. Simmer for around 20 minutes, until the quinoa is softened and a small tail has formed on the grain (I’m not making it up!). Drain.
Mix the quinoa with the pomegranate seeds, olives and parsley, with a little salt and pepper. Place the halloumi on a lightly oiled griddle pan or frying pan and lightly fry for two or three minutes each side, until turning golden brown. Serve the halloumi on top of the quinoa with a mixed leaf salad!
I read an excellent book called Menopause and Madness by Marcia Lawrence. Lawrence reveals in this book that some women who suffer from oestrogen loss are often misdiagnosed. Instead of the oestrogen replacement therapy that they so desperately need, these women are routinely referred to psychiatrists where they are given psychoactive drugs or are even institutionalised.
NICE guidelines recognise that mental health issues can be part of the symptoms of the menopause and have a series of recommendations about how to deal with them such as Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) or Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT).
Many psychiatrists believe that severe mental health problems like schizophrenia must be treated with medication, but if you don’t want to take antipsychotics, there are alternative treatments you can try. You may find it’s possible to manage your symptoms, or to make a full recovery, without medication.Click on the following links for alternative treatments.
Antipsychotic medicines have proven to be ineffective in many cases, and many individuals just don’t want to be medicated.
A growing body of research demonstrates that children and adults can overcome many mental disorders without drugs. Many holistic practitioners would rather try alternatives to psychiatric treatments before prescribing drugs.
No one has to suffer from side effects, dependence, and addiction, nor medication withdrawal syndrome. Alternative mental health options do provide non-drug-based mental health treatment options.
Treatment plans can combine several or many different therapies. Through talk therapy of various kinds, patients can honestly express themselves, face their fears, better understand their illness, and begin to identify triggers and learn how to prevent and control them.
Cognitive-behavioral therapy helps patients to undo negative or unhealthy thought and behavior patterns, as well as rationalize fears and anxieties, balance mood swings, and continuously and gradually work towards a more complete internal peace.
Exposure therapy allows patients to face their fears, anxieties, phobias, and triggers within a safe, familiar and controlled environment. The opportunity to experience exposure therapy naturally results in more comfortable encounters for these patients when dealing with their fears in the outside world.
There are lots of different ways of understanding and relating to hearing voices and other similar sensory experiences.
Some people view their experiences as a symptom of a mental health problem, relating to diagnoses like psychosis, schizophrenia, anxiety, depression or PTSD.
Others may understand their experiences as a natural response to trauma or adverse life experiences (such as childhood abuse, poverty, discrimination, racism, victimisation or social isolation).
Others may see their voices as a gift or sensitivity, an ability that can be a valued part of their life.
Others may experience them as an unwanted force in their lives that they are struggling to manage.
Conventional approaches in psychiatry to the problem of voice hearing have been to ignore the meaning of the experience for the voice hearer and concentrate on removing the symptoms (audio hallucinations) by the use of physical means such as medication.
Although antipsychotic medication is helpful to some sufferers of psychosis , there is a significant proportion that still experience the ‘symptoms’ such as hearing voices despite very high doses of injected antipsychotic medication which cause severe side effects.
Also anti-psychotic medication prevents the emotional processing and therefore healing, of the meaning of the voices.
Hearing voices in itself is not related to the illness of schizophrenia. In population research only 16% of the whole group of voice hearers can be diagnosed with schizophrenia.
The prognosis of hearing voices is more positive than generally is perceived. In Sandra Escher’s research with children hearing voices she followed 82 children over a period of four years. In that period 64% of the children’s voices disappeared congruently with learning to cope with emotions and becoming less stressed.
In children with whom the voices were psychiatrised and made a part of an illness and not given proper attention, voices did not vanish, but became worse, the development of those children was delayed.
Other supplemental treatments such as exercise, yoga, massage, sauna therapy, aromatherapy, acupuncture, massage therapy, equine therapy, art therapy, and meditation support the person’s overall progress.
Herbs, vitamins, minerals, and supplements can also make substantial differences. Research shows that nutritional deficiencies are often an overlooked contributor to mental disorders. Identifying and fixing deficits produces amazing results.
The research, published in the world’s leading schizophrenia research journal, Schizophrenia Bulletin, found that early psychosis is associated with large deficits in blood levels of critical nutrients, with particularly low levels of vitamin B9 (folate) and vitamin D.
Folate is naturally present in a wide variety of foods, including vegetables (especially dark green leafy vegetables), fruits and fruit juices, nuts, beans, peas, seafood, eggs, dairy products and grains .
Spinach, asparagus, and brussels sprouts are among the foods with the highest folate levels.
Furthermore, these nutritional deficiencies were found to be associated with worse mental health in people with early psychosis.
Although just one of many factors, it is important to recognise that nutritional deficiencies could certainly be contributing to the poor physical and mental health outcomes often observed in people with psychosis.
Since both of these nutrients are vital for physical and psychological wellbeing, this finding emphasises the importance of promoting a healthy diet for people with psychosis.
Of particular interest in the research, both patients were able to stop antipsychotic medications and have remained in remission for years now. Though more evidence is certainly needed, this is extraordinarily hopeful news for those with this disorder and for the mental health professionals treating them.
If you have schizophrenia or any serious disorder and are considering using the ketogenic diet as a treatment, I strongly recommend that you consult with a healthcare professional before trying this diet. Why? Because mental illnesses are serious disorders. The medical version of the ketogenic diet has risks and side effects.
You should have accurate information, help, and medical supervision to implement treatments in a safe and effective way. All of the patients described in all of these studies were treated by physicians while attempting the ketogenic diet.
A healthy diet is certainly an important part of the picture for good mental health but so are physical activity, good psychological care, medication [if absolutely necessary ], adequate sleep, adequate exposure to nature and a balanced lifestyle!
More than half of the world’s population lives in urban settings, and that is forecast to rise to 70 percent within a few decades. Just as urbanization and disconnection from nature have grown dramatically, so have mental disorders such as depression.
In fact, city dwellers have a 20 percent higher risk of anxiety disorders and a 40 percent higher risk of mood disorders as compared to people in rural areas. People born and raised in cities are twice as likely to develop schizophrenia.
With the vast range of therapeutic tools and techniques at our disposal, mental health practitioners often overlook a key resource that has a multitude of mental, emotional and cognitive benefits, is generally accessible to most people, and doesn’t cost a thing: the great outdoors.
As humans become less connected with nature, we lose an essential health buffer. There is mounting evidence that contact with nature has significant positive impacts on mental health.
Being in nature, or even viewing scenes of nature, reduces anger, fear, and stress and increases pleasant feelings. Exposure to nature not only makes you feel better emotionally, it contributes to your physical wellbeing, reducing blood pressure, heart rate, muscle tension, and the production of stress hormones.
In addition, nature helps us cope with pain. Because we are genetically programmed to find trees, plants, water, and other nature elements engrossing, we are absorbed by nature scenes and distracted from our pain and discomfort.
Nature deprivation,a lack of time in the natural world, largely due to hours spent in front of TV or computer screens, has been associated, unsurprisingly, with depression.
In addition to nature’s calming effect on depression symptoms, being outdoors gives you a great excuse to exercise, another important way to help manage depression. While exercise boosts endorphins — natural body chemicals that elicit sensations of pleasure — exercising outdoors can improve self-esteem and reduce feelings of depression, anger, and tension.
So couple the effects of exercise with the mood-boosting properties of the great outdoors, and you’ll address your body’s physical and emotional needs!
I visited two beautiful gardens this week situated near Carlow town about a hours drive from my home in Mooncoin county Kilkenny in Ireland.
Altamont Gardens are an enchanting blend of formal and informal gardens with riverside walks covering over 40
acres (16 hectares).
Lawns bisected by sculpted yews, slope down to a lake surrounded by rare trees and rhododendrons and lead in turn to a very different garden featuring exotic shrubs and trees.
A fascinating walk through the Arboretum, Bog Garden and Ice Age Glen with its canopy of ancient oaks and huge stone outcrops leads me to the River Slaney.
Every element you want from a great garden is here, from lovely lawns, floral beds and beautiful woodland going down to the river, to a walled garden!
Deep in the woods, away from the traffic noise, all you feel is the exertion, your breathing, and the elements around you. It’s impossible to be distracted by your everyday worries and concerns.
If you dwell on your problems like I do and just can’t stop, a walk in a beautiful garden might put the brakes on the thought train circling through your head. Research shows that a 90-minute walk in nature lowers activity in the part of the brain linked to negative rumination.
Just off the main street of the charming Carlow village of Clonegall, you can discover Huntington Castle; still the home of the family whose ancestors constructed the castle centuries before.
Huntington Castle, is set in over 160 acres of gardens, woodland and farmland.
The castle features a fascinating guided tour which explains its 17th century history.
The tour also features the world famous Temple of Goddess located in the old castle dungeons.
The castle offers a fabulous woodland playground, as well as a charming tearoom and gift shop.
The gardens are well worth a visit in their own right and were mainly laid out in the 17th century by the Esmondes who built Huntington Castle in 1625.
They include the French limes on the avenue as well as the formal lawns to the side of the house, fish ponds on either side of the centre walk and the yew tree walk.
Do you have any stunning castles near you if you do please share some photos as everyone would love to see them😍
Being outside helps clear my head, lift my spirits, and increase my focus on the present moment.Being near water is particularly healing for me. I notice all my problems seem lighter and less stressful.
Absorb nature with all of your senses. Listen to the birds, smell freshly cut grass, dip your toes in a pond or stream. If you usually exercise in a gym, try taking your workout outside — go for a walk, a run, a hike, or a bike ride. Head outside to have lunch or dinner!
At times, I feel lost, and begin to wonder what life is all about. A dose of nature reminds me just how wondrous the world is. Nature provides trees that were hundreds of years old before I was even born!
When it comes to awe-inspiring awesomeness, nature leaves our jaws dropping and spines tingling, and rekindles the realization that we’re a tiny part of an incredible universe. What’s more powerful than that?
One of the most basic human needs is to feel that you belong and you’re part of a larger tribe. But studies show that this concept goes beyond human relationships alone. Time in nature results in a sense of belonging to the wider world that is vital for mental health.
Alongside daily reports about COVID-19’s spread, so too are there growing concerns about the strain of lockdown, isolation, fear and grief on our mental well-being!
For those who cannot get out, studies make clear that views of nature, caring for plants and even digital images of nature can have positive impacts on stress. People recover from illness faster when they can see green space due to increased positive feelings, reduced fear and eased pain!
Next time you’re outside, see and listen to nature, from the birds singing their own special tunes to bright green buds that will turn to leaves adorning branches. In difficult times like these, life is everywhere!
If you can’t go outside because of your health or other reasons, many zoos and conservation organizations are streaming videos to let you enjoy wildlife and the outdoors from the comfort of your home!
If you have any nature videos you would like to share or photos of your beautiful country please post them in the comment section below or send me an email!
With all of the issues and restrictions of life caused by the coronavirus pandemic, we need something that reduces our stress, lowers our blood pressure, stimulates our immune system, and improves our mood more than ever before. It’s time to get outside!
When you’re outside, follow the CDC’s recommended guidelines on protecting yourself, such as keeping at least a six-foot distance from other people, avoiding high-touch areas such as playgrounds, not touching your face, and washing your hands for at least 20 seconds as soon as you get back home!
If you’re lucky enough to have a garden, why not take some time out of your day to get it in good condition by adding some plants and decking, so you can sit outside and enjoy the summer in style!
Breaking your day up from working indoors with spending quality family time in the garden during your dinner hour or after work will work wonders for you during these difficult times!
Brendan my husband thought now was the perfect opportunity to insulate and spray paint a new dog shed for our dogs Bruno, Hachi and Elvis as the old shed was falling apart!
I think he did a fantastic job and our three dogs have a lovely safe warm secure shed now ❤️
How about you I bet you completed some great DIY jobs yourself during this pandemic.
It would be great if you would share your work with photos or videos in the comment section below 😊
When Brendan was doing his DIY work on the dog shed I worked in our polytunnel so we tackled two jobs at once and we both enjoyed working outdoors in the fresh air!
Your self-esteem increases when you spend time with friends and family doing different outdoor
Sunlight boosts your Vitamin D levels. The more the Vitamin D your body gets, the stronger its immune system becomes!
On top of that, being with outdoor plants helps you get the health benefits of the phytoncides and other organic compounds that plants produce. These compounds boost immune function in humans!
My main interest is reading I have always liked reading since I was a child.I always liked to daydream and imagine I was the heroine in the book I was reading especially when it was a romantic novel.
I am very sentimental about everything especially a good story for example a romantic story,an emotional story,a true story and a love story!
A good comedy makes me laugh and anything emotional makes me cry!
I like many things but most of all I like reading especially at night before I go to bed.
I also use to read the bible every night before I went to sleep.However I got tired of that so I decided to to join a Christian group instead!
I am very glad I did as I have met some lovely people there!The name of the Christian Church I go to is Calvary Waterford!
It has a lovely Worship Service which I enjoy immensely!
See below a picture of the Christian Church I attend!
I like all kinds of books especially women’s fiction as you can see from the picture of my attic conversion and I like many kinds of people especially kind people!
For example a lovely women from a website called Positivehealthwellness.com asked me to partner with her website which I was delighted with especially as it has fabulous infographics on it!
As you can see from our diabetes site I use them a lot!
I hope you dont mind me telling you this but I need to get this out as people dont realise how much work is involved in creating a health website like Positivehealthwellness.com and Diabetessupportsite.com.
I think that a lot of people think that it is just a few hours a week and it doesn’t involve a lot of work but it does especially if you are very slow at typing like me!
I have been working on this website for nearly six years and have still a lot more work to do on it!You would not believe how many hours a day I work on it!
I am not very good at expressing my feelings that often but I would like everyone to know how important it is that people who read articles on websites and enjoy them should pay a compliment to the writer or send an email or write a comment in the comment section!
I want to tell you a story and it is a true story about me and this website!
I got a lovely email from a woman called Mary at a time when I was feeling very downheartened about this website!She raised my spirits when she told me that because of Diabetes Support Site she went to the doctor and was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes!
She said if it wasn’t for our diabetes site things could have been a lot worse so she was very grateful for all the work I had put into this site!
I was delighted she sent me this email as I was about to give up on this site but her words of praise gave me the incentive to continue working on this website!
Her words of kindness helped me so much and because of her kindness I want to help as many people as possible!
I so hope I can help millions of people through this website!
It is only through helping people is life worth living!Without help no one can achieve anything in this world!
People think that working on the internet must be very easy and not time consuming at all but this is totally false it is very hard work and involves a lot of patience!
It is very time consuming and you have to be very dedicated and very persistent.Also you cant expect to earn a lot of money from it!
I haven’t earned much it is hardly worth talking about and it can get you down sometimes and then other times I dont mind as long as I know that I am helping people!
The worst part of it is getting no feedback.I am on my own staring at a computer screen with no one to talk to or no one to help not really anyway!
The only people I have helping me is two men who setup a training website for people like me who wanted to create their own websites.
The name of this website is Wealthy Affiliate and I would be lost without them.Their names are Carson and Kyle!
They are two nice guys who wanted to help people and that is what they did help people!Without them I wouldn’t have had the skills or knowledge to create this website!
I hope you access the above banner as these guys are great and could help you setup your own online website but I warn you it isn’t easy and you have to be prepared for a long hard road ahead with very little income!
I dont want you to think that this is some sort of sob story it’s not I just want people to know the truth!
I didn’t realise when I first started that this would involve so much work I thought that it would be a nice little earner involving very little work!
I would just like to say one more thing I dont like to brag but I think I have learned more in the past six years working on this website than I have in the many years I worked in Teva Pharmaceuticals as a Research and Development Analyst.
I think people think that working on a health website must be very boring but I dont think so I enjoy it especially when I get feedback so please I beg you send me an email or write a comment in the comment section,I would be so grateful!
I would be very sad if I never got any feedback after all the time and effort I have put into this diabetes site!
Please realise that working on a health site can be exciting but it can also be boring especially when you get no feedback!
I had to do a lot of reading and researching for good information which was accurate and true!
This can get quite boring at times,sometimes I enjoyed it,sometimes not so much,it depended on my mood and what topic I was researching!
When I get feedback it gives me ideas about researching other areas and other illnesses!Also another kind lady Karen asked me about the Ketogenic Diet and Type 2 diabetes she was very excited to learn about Keto testing so I decided to research more into the ketogenic diet!I hope Karen found it helpful!
I think the more information a person has about diabetes the better!The major thing that all diabetics need to read is their blood glucose monitor without it you dont know wether your blood sugar level is high,low or normal.
The other major things that diabetics need to be able to read is their prescriptions and long term illness book that you bring in to the chemist as well as the number of units of insulin you need to inject using a syringe or an insulin pen!
It is also very important to be able to read food labels for carbohydrate counting,this is essential for a diabetic!Also it is important to be able to read recipes especially healthy diabetic recipes!
The other things people with diabetes need to read about is a healthy lifestyle and exercise routines!
So the most important thing that diabetics need to do is to gain knowledge about their illness through good health sites like Positivehealthwellness.com and Diabetessupportsite.com.
This website was created by me,Maureen Coughlan to help people I so hope it helps everyone!
I was in Carrick on Suir today for a walk around the town and I parked my car near Morris Oil garage!
I then walked further on and came across a number of attractive houses in the town!
See below a selection of houses and gardens in Carrick!
I then came across Carrick Swan Built where a man was cutting the grass in the Hurling and Football field!
I then passed a children’s play area which was quiet but a lot of children would be at school as it was Tuesday afternoon around 12am!
I then looked across the road and saw a Primary school with a variety of coloured flags!
I continued down the road and came across another section of the children’s playground!
Then I decided to go across the road to take more pictures of the Primary School!
See a selection of pictures of Carrick’s Primary School!
Then I met a nice man while I was taking the photos,I went into the school to take the photos and he seemed concerned!
He told me he was the principal of the Primary School!
I explained about this website and how I wanted to promote the town of Carrick on it!
I showed him this website on my mobile phone and how you can access it under Diabetes Support!
He was concerned that visitors would come into the Primary School and I explained they would only look through the gates or across the road as the school is not covered by insurance!
I think that if people want to view the lovely Celtic features below they should not enter the school as I dont want to be responsible for any damage or disruption to this lovely school!
Please dont enter the school unless you are a parent or carer of one of the children attending the school!
I then crossed the road and came across the Carrick Gardai Station!
I then came across a sign for Ormonde Castle,I think I will visit that tomorrow!
Are there any lovely castles near you that you have visited or would like to visit!
If so would you leave a comment on the comment section below!
I then came across a very nice community park in Carrick!
There was a lovely statue of Our Lady as we entered the park!
The name of this lovely community park is Fair Green!
There is another sign for South Leinster Way!
I then entered the Fair Green Park ,see below a selection of very attractive pictures of the park!
Then I saw three ladies at a distance having a chat at the far wall of the Fair Green Park!
Then I passed a house with green ivory on the walls!
Across the road from this nice community park is a selection of attractive houses and gardens!
I then went back into the park and saw a lovely tree with an exposed trunk!
What do you think of this tree,I think it is very attractive!
I then went out of the park and then took a photo of a row of fine houses at the side of the community park!
As I entered the park again I came across a man with a hat on walking his dog!
I then saw at a distance three young ladies on a bench having a chat and enjoying their surroundings!
I then decided to exit the park and took two lovely photos of Our Lady!
Then after that I went for some lunch!
I ordered leek and potato soup and a slice of homemade brown bread!
The soup was very nice and I liked the texture and flavour,it also was seasoned with plenty of black pepper which I enjoyed!
I think that soup is much nicer and healthier when it is seasoned with herbs like basil,parsley and watercress,and with spices such as pepper and chilli rather than loaded with salt which is very bad for people as it causes high blood pressure!
I liked the potato and leek in the soup,I thought the colour looked a bit bland though and if they added plenty of carrots it would have a nicer colour and flavour!
I thought the homemade brown bread was really nice,moist and light on the stomach!
After that I came across a lovely hedge and tree area!
Then I came across Carrick Swan Juvenile GAA Centre!
Then I came across a lovely colourful garden area!
I then turned around the corner and came across the Sean Healy Library!
I then entered the library and saw a really great painting of a children’s Book!
What do you think I think that it is really colourful and creative!
I then saw a selection of pamphlets on the right of the painting called RSA Working To Save Lives!
I then entered the library and came across a really nice children’s section!
See below a selection of photos of the children’s area!
What do you think of the great painting on the right of the photo above?
I think that the children’s area in Sean Healys Library is very colourful dont you?
I really like this photo especially the bookworm painted on the right hand side on the wall!
What do you think isnt it great!
I think this is a really great poster as it reminded me when I was a child how I use to get so involved in the book I was reading I would be in my own little world!
My mother Mary use to call me for my dinner and I would be so lost in the book and in my own little bubble that I never heard her!
She use to laugh at me and give me a hug!
I think reading is very important for everyone especially for young children,as it is very important for gaining valuable skills such as literacy,good spelling,learning valuable moral lessons and instilling a sense of adventure!
My favourite books as a child were The Secret Seven,Famous Five,Little House On The Praire and The Naughiest Girl In The School Series!
What is your favourite children books,please let me know what they are by leaving a comment in the section below!
I think it is great that the kind librarian who talked to me supports charities in her library like childrensbooksireland.ie!
Next I moved further down the library and saw a variety of different books!
See below a selection of children’s books on a bookstand!
Do you see any that you read yourself as a child?
There was also one computer designated for children which is a great idea as computer skills are essential now in this day and age!
Next I saw a good selection of DVD’s,I would like to see Breakfast at Tiffany’s again as I think Audrey Hepburn was a very beautiful women!
Next I saw a New Book Section I dont think I have read any of them have you?
If you have please tell me a little about them in the comment section below!
Please also let me know who is your favourite author and why?
My favourite author is Maeve Binchy because her books have lovely stories that are kind and funny with some romance in them!
Next I saw more DVD’s on a shelf organised into Action and Thriller!
Then next to the DVD shelf I saw Philosphy and Psychology,Religion,Physical Health,Self Help and Home Education!
I then viewed more of the adult section!
There is going to be a change in opening hours for Carrick library starting on the 27th of September 2019!
Next I came to the Irish History section,it reminded me of my time in St.Mary’s Presentation Convent Rathmore.
I studied Irish History there,it brought back memories of my favourite subject in school!
I remember people like Charles Stewart Parnell,Michael Collins,Eamon de Valera and Tom Clarke!
How about you what was your favourite subject in school?
Were you into History if so who was your favourite Revolutionist?
Please leave a comment in the comment section below!
There is also a sitting area in the Sean Healy library,see below a photo of a young lady using her mobile phone!
See below another selection of books in the Sean Healy Library!
More books in the Sean Healy Library!
There are seven adult computers available for compiling curriculum vitaes and doing project work for college students!
There also was a machine available for book access!
There is a reception desk for logging in and out books!
There also was a noticeboard containing local historic features!
There also were three posters giving you information on French Lessons,Piano Lessons and Guitar Lessons!
There is also an Encyclopedia and Miscellaneous Section!
I next came across a Dictionary and local courses section!
Next I came across a good photo of Michael Coady a local poet born in Carrick-on-Suir County Tipperary!
Next a came across a young woman working hard on the computer!
Next I went over to the Book Access machine to get a closer look at how it worked!
Next I saw a shelf full of information pamphlets!
Tipperary Library Council have a logo and motivational slogan see the photo below!
Then I went into a side room where I saw a fairly large selection of paintings on the wall!
A kind women came over to me and asked me if she could help me!
I was looking at one of the paintings of the artist who painted all the lovely paintings on the wall!
The lady then introduced herself as the librarian of Sean Healy Library and she told me that some of the paintings were painted using coffee and some were painted using Guinness!
I told her about this Diabetes Support website and she was very interested and I asked her if it would be alright to promote the Sean Healy Library on this Diabetes website!
I asked her if it would be alright to take some photos of the library and the paintings on the wall and she happily agreed!
See below a selection of photos of the paintings painted by Mike Gale!
Next I came across an Art Community Drawing lying next to one of the windows!
I was surprised it was not hanging on the wall!
The kind librarian was very friendly and pleasant to me,she also gave me a nice interesting piece of information that not all the paintings were painted using coffee some were painted using Guinness!
See below a selection of pictures of the Guinness Paintings!
I also saw Two flyers and a Framed picture of the artist Mike Gale in the side room of the Sean Healy library!
When I was in the room taking the photos of the lovely pictures painted by the artist Mike Gale,there was a Book Club going on!
Many times I thought of joining a Book Club especially after reading the book The Book Club by the author Kate Mc Cabe!
See below a lovely photo of some of the members of the Book Club!
I noticed that one of the women has the same shoulder bag with printed dogs on it as me I wonder if she got it in Blarney Woolen Mills like my mother in law Mary and I did and do any of you have this shoulder bag or any printed animal bag if so can you please post a photo of it in the comment section below!
I then looked out of the window as I was going to go back to my car when I saw it was raining outside so I decided to stay in the lovely Sean Healy library until it stopped raining!
I went back inside the library and I sat down at one of the desks near the children’s area and I saw a flyer of a Womens Mini Marathon!
See Below A photo of it!
I then noticed three students working hard at the computers!
I then noticed a lady and two young girls coming into the library and one of the little girls went up to the reception desk as she was bringing back her library book so I decided to take her photo as I had no photos of children in the library yet.
Then later on I saw the other little girl playing with a puzzle in the Children’s Section and I thought it would be a good idea to take her photo too.
I was so caught up in taking photos that would promote the Sean Healy library I never asked the lady with the two children was that alright and I should have!
The kind Librarian then came over to me and explained that you cant take photos of children under eighteen and post them online and she knew that is what I was going to do as I had already told her I wanted to promote the Sean Healy library in this website!
I am concerned that some people maybe annoyed that I have some photos of children in playparks and funfairs but I thought it would look very strange to have no children there!
If you see any photos of your child or are a carer of a child and you dont want their photo in this website,please contact me straight away and I will delete the photo!
I felt very embarassed and upset and I hope I havent worried that lady with the two children,the librarian asked me to delete any photos with children in them,I did this and I asked her to go through the other photos to make sure she was happy with them!
I understand if some people dont like having their photo taken and put up in this website as I explained in another article I dont like being photographed myself!
So if any of you are not happy being in any of these photos on this Diabetes website,Please let me know and I will remove the photo straight away as my intention for this website is to help people and cause no offence!
This website was created by me Maureen Coughlan to portray everything in a positive way and try my best to get rid of negativity in all areas of life!
Gardening has been a great pasttime for my husband and myself we have spend many happy hours enjoying our garden and spending time with our two dogs Hachi and Bruno.
Gardening has amazing health benefits for diabetics.Whether your garden is a small patio planter, a backyard vegetable garden or a large garden like ours.
It’s no coincidence that gardens aimed at interactive health and healing have been popping up in prisons, hospitals, nursing homes, and in community centers for homeless populations and at-risk youth.
Gardening is a way to achieve your target 2.5 hours of moderate-intensity exercise each week .
Brendan my husband spends many days in the Autumn leaf blowing as the leaves in our garden accumulate a lot during this season.He bought a leaf blower which makes the job a lot easier and it gets done in half the time.
See below a picture of his leaf blower in our lovely garden.
A large Stockholm study showed that regular gardening cuts stroke and heart attack risk by up to 30% for those over 60.Try thirty minutes of gardening a day if you are over sixty or try a quick fifteen minutes in the morning and another fifteen minutes in the evening.
As we age, diminishing dexterity and strength in the hands can gradually narrow the range of activities that are possible or pleasurable. Gardening keeps those hand muscles vigorous and agile .
Researchers found daily gardening to represent the single biggest risk reduction for dementia, reducing incidence by 36%.
Gardening involves so many of our critical functions, including strength, endurance, handiness, learning, problem solving, and sensory awareness, that its benefits represent a variety of different aspects.
When you get into the groove of growing your own flowers, vegetables and trees, you start to live more in sync with nature.You may find yourself sleeping better and not struggling to wake up every morning
Gardening builds strength. It takes a lot of work to till, hoe, weed and shovel, which burns calories and builds muscle.. You’ll also sweat more, which is the best way to rid your body of toxins and unneeded chemicals.
When you garden you grow your own fruits, vegetables, herbs and even edible flowers. You grow everything organically if you want, with no pesticides or herbicides, which is much healthier for you.
Studies have shown that gardeners eat more fruits and vegetables than other people. Brendan and myself have the freshest food as we grow our own, and when you have access to a garden filled with fruits and vegetables like ours, you’re able to eat some of the healthiest food you can get!
A European study investigating the links between diet and disease has found that people who consume more fruit and vegetables have a lower risk of dying from heart disease.
You’ll always have something available to eat, from springtime to autumn and you can send your dinner guests home with a bag of your garden’s bounty–a perfect dinner party goody bag. Plus, you’ll have fresh flowers available to decorate the table.
If you have children in your life, whether your kids, grandkids,nieces ,nephews or students in the classroom, gardening is an ideal way to teach them about the earth. Kids can read all they want about things in books, but when they see and experience them in real life, the lessons tend to stick better.
When you include kids in all the benefits of gardening they learn healthy habits before bad ones, which gets them off to a good start in life. Even if you don’t have a big plot of land, a row of herbs on the windowsill or a vine of tomatoes on the deck can teach children about the art and science of gardening.
Gardening has also emerged in recent years as a scientifically proven stress reliever. Stress can cause irritability, headaches, stomach aches, heart attacks and worsen pre-existing conditions in the body.
Researchers compared gardening to reading as a stress-relieving activity; gardeners experienced a more significant decrease in stress when compared to people who have no garden .
Researchers often find in their studies that subjects who participate in gardening have a positive mental outlook.
People who feel a connection to Nature are often happier
Gardening connects you with people and community gardens provide an ideal opportunity for people to interact with each other. Research indicates that local gardening brings about a better sense of community .
A sedentary lifestyle is directly related to a higher risk for obesity and Type 2 Diabetes. Even moderate exercise like DIY around the house will begin to increase your body’s ability to effectively use the insulin that the pancreas produces.
Exercise will also begin to burn excess body fat, which will decrease body weight and increase your body’s sensitivity to insulin. Other benefits of regular exercise such as DIY include lower blood pressure, increased energy, improved circulation (reducing risk for heart disease,) reduced stress, and increased relaxation.
Brendan is a great DIY man which gives him an opportunity to use his hands and brain. The sense of reward he gets from making something with his hands can’t be earned any other way. It’s obvious that he learns faster from “hands-on” experience than by watching someone else do something.
DIY also gives him a connection to other people such as our two neighbours David and Correl. They are happy to share ideas and advice with each other and help each other out
DIY is a great friendship builder.Correl is fairly new to the area,a very nice man from Czechoslovakia who has made many new friends around our neighbourhood because of his DIY skills.
Even if you have no desire to become a full-time DIY maker, DIY can provide a certain degree of freedom from depending on others for everything you need.
The evidence is clear DIY and gardening are excellent for your health!
My favourite garden centre is the Arboretum Garden Centre in Carlow!
It is a beautiful garden centre with a lovely restaurant,showcase gardens,a horticultural shop and loads of flowers,shrubs,trees,pots and water features!
I went there on Bank Holiday Monday and it was very busy with loads of people going into the Arboretum!
See below a picture of the Arboretum with people going into the main horticultural area!
After entering the garden centre we passed Blarney Woollen Mills where there was a sale on!
See below a picture of their shop!
We were both hungry and decided to go straight to the restaurant!
I ordered the poached salmon and Brendan got the beef!
The food was really lovely spot on!
See below a picture of the poached salmon lunch!
The salmon melted in my mouth,the roast potatoe had a lovely flavour and the broccoli was fresh and the carrots were lovely and sweet!
I went into the ladies after my meal to do my insulin injection and took four units of novorapid two units for the creamy mashed potatoes and two units for the crispy roast potatoe!
In the ladies they had lovely porcelain flower wash bowls!
I took a picture what do you think?
As we left the restaurant I stopped at their Tikki Bar and took a photo!
Then we passed a selection of gorgeous water features!
After that we went to the main horticultural area where I took a few photos of their main entrance area!
See below a selection of photos!
This is a gorgeous picture of their farmyard area full of wooden animals such as deer,storks,hens,badgers,ducks etc.
A family with three children were admiring the farmyard,the little boy liked the tractor,sheep and cows!
See the picture below!
The little girl had one of the baby rabbits in her hand admiring it!
In their main entrance hall is a selection of roses,shrubs,trees and pots!
See below a selection of pictures!
This is a beautiful archway what do you think?
They have a great selection of trees!
They have a great variety of pots!What kind of garden pots do you like?It would be great if you would leave a picture below or send me an email!
This is a lovely birdcage surrounded by beautiful shrubs!
A beautiful selection of trees in different autumn colours!
I saw a lovely red door surrounded by lushous pots in different seasonal colours!
Next I passed a bright and airy conservatory where there was two statues at either end!
I really enjoyed myself while I was taking the photos!
It was raining but I didnt mind as I was wearing a raincoat with a hood that kept me nice and dry!
I passed many statues along the Arboretum’s showcase gardens!
See below a selection of the statues!
This is a statue of David!
This is a lovely statue of a little girl holding a basket!
This is a young women holding some flowers!
This is a young man holding a basket of grapes!
There is a variety of inspirational gardens see below a selection!
Their inspirational gardens have a variety of colour,plant selections,animal art design,a tropical area , a variety of different roses and a pond with a variety of water features!
A lovely water feature at the beginning of the Inspirational gardens!
An owl hidden by a variety of different seasonal shrubs!
A beautiful pathway with stone features,trees,shrubs and colourful flowers!
The most beautiful section of the inspirational gardens!
Another colourful area!
A beautiful picture of lavender and orange blossom!
Another closeup shot of the lavendar and orange blossom!
The pond with swan water features!
An art design crocodile isnt it great!What do you think?
The tropical area with overhanging branches!
A sleeping Art Design Hippopotamus!
A lovely picture of luscious foliage !
Attractive burnt red shrubs and a variety of green shrubs!
A great little place to relax and unwind!
A young women enjoying the gardens!
A beautiful view of the inspirational gardens!
A variety of different foliage!
A beautiful picture near the top of the inspirational gardens!
This is the Arboretum Garden Centre’s Map!
Art Design Gorilla! Do you think he looks great? I do!
A spiral feature surrounded by beautiful red roses!
A tree full of apples!
Pretty pink bluebells!
Livestock hiding in the shrubs!
A selection of beautiful flowers!
A variety of different shrubs and flowers!
A selection of Fat Face Soap!
Irish Botanicals Range!
This is a great shot of the card section in the Arboretum shop!
Father and Son looking at pictures in the picture section!
PMS stands for premenstrual syndrome , it’s the combination of symptoms that some women suffer from a week or so before their period.
Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) has a wide variety of signs and symptoms, including mood swings, tender breasts, food cravings, fatigue, irritability and depression. It’s estimated that as many as 3 out of 4 menstruating women have experienced some form of premenstrual syndrome.
A typical menstrual cycle lasts about 28 days with a normal range of 21 to 35 days. It is best measured by the number of days between your periods.
Women living with diabetes may experience some unique menstrual challenges as a result of complex hormonal interactions.
The hormones which control the menstrual cycle also affect blood sugar levels. There are 2 main hormones involved progesterone and oestrogen.
These are at their highest levels before a period starts.It is thought that progesterone causes increased insulin resistance. More insulin is needed to keep blood sugars within recommended levels.
Although most women experience higher blood sugars before their period, some experience bouts of hypoglycaemia. This maybe due to oestrogen, which can have the opposite effect on insulin sensitivity.
Every woman and girl is different. Some may find their blood sugar rises considerably before their period starts. Others do not notice a difference. A few may find their blood sugar drops before and during their period. You need to discover your own pattern.
With type 1 diabetes (controlled with insulin injections) it is often the fasting blood sugar which rises before your period. Adjusting your overnight insulin often helps. When your period starts and you find your blood sugars drop, re-adjust your insulin to its old level.Take advice from your diabetes health care professional about this.
The same increase in progesterone that causes you to be temporarily more resistant to insulin also will likely cause you to have food cravings for simple carbohydrates and may cause you to lose your motivation to exercise.
Over time, this cyclical poor control can increase your risk of diabetic complications.
Alcohol, caffeine and chocolate may affect your mood. Omitting them from your diet around the time of your period may make you feel less edgy and less inclined to crave high carbohydrate, high GI (Glycaemic Index)and high-sugar snacks.
Wholewheat pasta with walnut pesto and baby spinach recipe.
I’m not a fan of excessive carbohydrate consumption, but with issues such as anxiety and depression a good carb injection once or twice a week can be very helpful.
This is because carbs, alongside the amino acid tryptophan (found here in the walnuts), can increase serotonin production, which can lift mood and regulate sleep.
SERVES 2 150g wholewheat fusilli or penne 175g walnuts 125g basil leaves 3 garlic cloves 2 tbsp grated hard goat’s cheese 200ml olive oil sea salt and freshly ground black pepper 4 large handfuls of baby spinach.
Place the pasta in a saucepan and top with boiling water. Simmer for 12–15 minutes, until the pasta is ready. Drain.
Meanwhile, place all the remaining ingredients except the spinach into a food processor and process on a medium speed to a coarse pesto.
Wilt the spinach in a pan in 2 tbsp of boiling water in the same way as you would in olive oil: just ‘sauté’ until it wilts. Stir in the cooked pasta and mix well. Add pesto to taste and mix well.
Your doctor may suggest that you take an over-the-counter medicine,every woman is different, so a drug that works for others might not be right for you.
Common over-the-counter medication include aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen. They can reduce the pain of cramps and other aches. If you take them before your period starts, you may be able to prevent some PMS symptoms from happening.
You should never take OTC medication with alcohol, which could stress out of the liver and contribute to irreversible damage.
Be careful of your dosage ,no more than one pill every six hours as needed, and no more than four pills per day.
Over the counter medications can potentially trigger acid reflux, general stomach upset, and internal bleeding. It’s one reason why you shouldn’t drink alcohol, another stomach irritant, before or after taking any OTC painkiller.
Your period is a good indicator of how your body is working overall. If you have some discomforts going on around period time, read on to find out what you can try before heading to the doctor treatment.
Research shows that adding omega-3 fatty acids to your diet reduces common PMS symptoms.A study showed that women with monthly premenstrual symptoms who took one gram of fish oil twice daily on the eight days leading up to their period and the first two days of their period experienced a significant decrease in overall PMS symptoms.
Fish oil contains two important omega-3 fatty acids–eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). These omega-3s have shown to play important roles in managing mood and sleep by improving brain cell function and helping the brain produce more serotonin, which is lower in your premenstrual week due to plunging estrogen.
Eating right can control the bloating, depression, irritability and mood changes associated with PMS.Vegetables like kale, turnip greens or Swiss chard are rich in iron and B vitamins, which can help ward off fatigue.
Calcium-rich foods are good too. Think salmon and spinach. Eat smaller meals instead of big ones. By eating more frequently, your blood sugar may stabilize better, helping you to feel better.
Swap any processed grains for whole grains such as whole grain breads, pastas, cereals and brown rice.Eating whole grains when you feel down is better than using sugar to boost mood.
Cook your own food rather than eating fast food or processed food because salt, like sugar, is hidden in a thousand places. Eating less salt is particularly recommended for patients with bloating, breast tenderness or swollen hands.
We know that sugar, caffeine, alcohol, stress, and lack of exercise all contribute to worsening PMS.
It is also true that dairy consumption can worsen hormonal imbalances because of all the hormones in milk.So cut out all dairy and consider eliminating other common allergens for a few months, especially gluten.Eat organic food to avoid environmental estrogens from pesticides.
Also medical practitioners recommend 30 to 45 minutes of exercise, five days per week and women should drink at least 64 ounces of water daily to help reduce bloating.
Dealing with stress is also critical. Take a hot bath at night, get a massage,learn deep breathing or prayer and meditation. These techniques and others can help balance hormones.
Sometimes, PMS can make everyday issues feel so much bigger than they really are. Or they can make you feel like you’re just not up to handling it all. Talking with others will relieve that emotional strain.
Chasteberry (Vitex agnus-castus) is one of the most popular herbs for premenstrual syndrome in Europe – it’s actually been used to treat PMS for thousands of years. Women taking Chasteberry had significant improvements in irritability, depression, headaches, and breast pain.It may also help with swelling, cramps, and food cravings.It does so by normalizing the ratio of estrogen to progesterone.
It helps balance other functions related to fertility including during pregnancy and menopause, and even has been used to increase fertility.
Chasteberry acts as a mild remedy to ease the physical and emotional symptoms of menstruation by working on stabilizing the hormones.Chasteberry may also help balance female sex hormones to support a more regular menstrual cycle.
For centuries, St. John’s Wort was used as a health remedy in Europe. In the past decade, St. John’s Wort has emerged as an important herbal medicine to cure PMS symptoms. While it was never historically considered one of the traditional “women’s herbs,”
At recommended doses, St. John’s Wort generally does not cause side effects. However, St. John’s Wort contains substances that can significantly alter the effectiveness of many drugs. If you’re using antidepressants, birth control pills, blood thinners, medicines for HIV, cancer drugs, cyclosporine, or digoxin, talk to your doctor before you try it. St. John’s Wort may interfere with how these drugs work.
The benefits of Evening Primrose oil are numerous. As an anti-inflammatory agent, evening primrose oil helps soothe menstrual cramps. Or, if you suffer from breast tenderness, evening primrose oil will provide relief so that putting on a bra is no longer an excruciating experience.
Evening Primrose oil also helps with mood irregularities.Evening Primrose oil helps promote a balance between estrogen and progesterone so you will feel like yourself again.
You can also enjoy long term benefits from Evening Primrose oil, besides just PMS relief. The fatty acids lead to shiny, beautiful hair and strong nails.If you have difficulty conceiving, evening primrose oil promotes uterine health.
The scientific name for this is Rubus idaeus L. and Rubus strigosus Michx. It is in the family of Rosaceae (roses). Red Raspberry Leaf can be taken in any of the following forms: tea, extract, supplement and as a seed oil.
It contains fragarine and tannins which together are known for treating PMS symptoms of cramping, vomiting, nausea and diarrhea.
It is also known to help with heavy and irregular bleeding during the menstrual cycle. Fragarine is known to help tone and tighten muscles in the pelvic region thereby assisting with the cramps caused by spasms of these muscles. In order to benefit from this you need to drink Red Raspberry Leaf tea on a regular basis.
Red Raspberry Leaf can be purchased as a tea pack or dry leaf. Place it in boiling water and steep it for about 15 minutes to make a tasty tea. Drink it up to three times per day.
Taken daily Red Raspberry Leaf will slow down the blood flow during menstruation and will build up the immune system. If taken daily over the course of several months, you will begin to forget about cramps, heavy blood flows and period pain.
Dang Gui is a Chinese herb that is known as women’s ginseng.. The herb has many therapeutic properties and can benefit the heart, lungs and kidneys.Dang gui has the ability to balance female hormones. It reduces your estrogen levels if they are too high and can increase them if they are too low.
Rich in vitamin B-12, folic acid, folinic acid, nicotinic acid, and biotin, dang gui helps to build blood, and is commonly used in Chinese medicine as a blood tonic.
Dang gui is an antispasmodic that eases cramps and other symptoms of PMS. It dilates your blood vessels to promote regular and healthy menstrual flows.It helps to relieve hot flashes and other menopausal symptoms.
Dang gui is an effective tonic for reducing anxiety and mood swings. It has a calming effect on your nervous system and promotes relaxation.
Dang gui has many other benefits including enhancing fertility, promoting healthy hair, skin and nails, treating iron deficiency and anemia, and more.
While Dang gui is considered safe for most people, it’s not for everyone, especially women with breast cancer, during pregnancy or while nursing, or with gastrointestinal problems.
Sleep difficulties are more common in people who have diabetes than in people who don’t. That’s because having diabetes raises the risk for certain sleep problems such as sleep apnea and restless legs syndrome.
Insomnia is characterized in a number of ways: you could have problems going to sleep (sleep onset insomnia), problems waking up and going back to sleep (middle of the night insomnia), or waking up in the early dawn unable to return to sleep that night (terminal or late insomnia).
Like many other medical diseases and conditions, diabetes is sensitive to sleep disturbances.
Studies have shown that diabetes worsens when adult sufferers sleep less than six hours per night or more than nine. The loss of normal sleep hours or addition of sleep hours seems to undo the body’s chemistry and completely throw off-balance the blood glucose levels.
Further studies have shown that chronic insomnia in healthy people can also instigate diabetes. Loss of sleep interrupts insulin balance,leads to insulin resistance which in turn can lead to more severe medical problems and Type 2 diabetes.
Insulin resistance is a condition in which the body’s cells do not respond normally to insulin.A lack of sleep has also been connected to obesity , a condition which has been linked to the development and increased severity of diabetes.
A lack of sleep can impair glucose metabolism and affect appetite regulation, making it more difficult for your body to control hunger or recognize satiation.In addition, the exhaustion someone feels when sleep deprived makes it difficult to exercise and control weight gain.
Getting more than 7 hours of sleep a night is a key factor in preventing obesity and therefore reducing the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.
There is an undeniable link between poor sleep and diabetes, as one tends to both aggravate and intensify the other. But managing to improve one also tends to make it easier to manage the other.
Eating correctly and properly maintaining blood sugar levels throughout the day makes it easier for the body to maintain the necessary levels throughout the night, often resulting in better sleep quality.
More and higher quality sleep has been shown to decrease glucose levels and make diabetes symptoms easier to manage.Deep sleep helps to boost immune function, support cardiac health, and control stress and anxiety.
Sleeping pills and other sleep-promoting pharmaceuticals can offer a short-term solution to a temporary bout of insomnia. And plenty of people use them. But often, prescription sleep aids come with unpleasant side effects like headaches, sore muscles, constipation, dry mouth, daytime fatigue, trouble concentrating, dizziness, and more.
Most people quickly build up a tolerance to the sedative effects of sleeping meds. Which either means that you have to take higher and higher doses to get the same effect, or they stop working altogether.
if you want to achieve longer, more restful sleep for a lifetime, you’ve really got to build healthy, pro-sleep habits.
Below explore proven home remedies that can give you a relaxation boost when you really need it, minus the side effects that tend to come with prescription meds.
Exercise boosts overall health. It can enhance your mood, give you more energy, aid in weight loss, and promote better sleep.
I was in the Lyra Hotel in Kilkenny yesterday with my twin sister Joan and my husband Brendan for our birthday!
It’s a lovely hotel with beautiful gardens!It is situated in a lovely area in County Kilkenny surrounded by trees and shrubs!
The Lyra Hotel is a very large hotel with a wonderful Entrance Hall which contains two pictures of the two golden retrievers seen above!
The entrance hall also contains lovely flowers and oil paintings that me and my sister admired!
The bathroom facilities were spotless with little hand towels for drying your hands and lovely soap dispensers and hand cream!
We had a lovely lunch,both me and my sister had the tiger prawn salad and it was delicious,we both cleared our plate!
I also had a look around their walled garden which was really lovely!I love roses and there was beautiful peach roses that smelled lovely!
I am very lucky to have a generous husband who paid for our meal!He also took us to see the Arboretum Garden Centre which is about fifeteen minutes drive from the Lyra Hotel.
It is a beautiful garden centre with a lovely seating area where we had a cup of tea each and a lovely slice of homemade sugar free fruitcake!
They also have a lovely display area with beautiful plants,shrubs and water features!
It is one of the nicest garden centres around!
Exercise triggers an increase in body temperature, and the post-exercise drop in temperature promotes falling asleep. Exercise also reduces insomnia by decreasing arousal, anxiety and depressive symptoms.
Being physically active requires you to expend energy, and helps you feel more tired and ready to rest at the end of the day.
Engage in moderate exercise for at least 30 minutes per day. You may add in some strength training or aerobic exercise a few times per week.
A bout of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise (e.g., walking) reduces the time it takes to fall asleep and increases the length of sleep of people with chronic insomnia compared to a night in which they did not exercise.
Find the time of day that best suits your needs and that has the most positive effect on your sleep.
Magnesium is a naturally occurring mineral,it helps muscles relax and relieve stress and encourages healthy sleep patterns.
This common mineral not only helps you fall asleep in the first place, but it helps you enjoy deeper, more restful sleep as well.
In our bodies, magnesium primarily exists in our serum and red blood cells. It’s one of the most common minerals in Earth, and you’ll see it as an ingredient in many foods.
Green vegetables, especially leafy ones like spinach ,kale and sea vegetables like kelp, are great sources of magnesium. That’s because the center of the chlorophyll molecule (which gives green vegetables their color) contains magnesium.
Other plant foods such as beans, peas, nuts, and seeds are good sources of magnesium. Grains such as wheat, rice, and quinoa are high in magnesium. But make sure you get them in their whole, natural, unrefined state.
In order to sleep, your brain needs to feel tired and relaxed, so it naturally starts winding things down toward the end of the day, preparing for sleep. Magnesium helps push this process along through its interactions with your melatonin levels and nervous system.
Some people are prone to magnesium deficiency, including those with diabetes, alcohol addiction, GI diseases, ADHD, and older adults. These individuals especially can benefit from supplemental magnesium.
Men may take up to 400 mg daily, and women can take up to 300 mg daily. You may choose to divide your doses between the morning and evening or take your dose before bed.
Side effects include stomach and intestinal issues. You may wish to start with a lower dose and gradually increase to see how your body reacts.
Check with your doctor if you take any medications to determine potential interactions.You shouldn’t take magnesium supplements constantly. Take a break for a few days every two weeks.
Don’t take more than the recommended dose .
Morning sunlight, how much and when you get it, actually has a significant impact on your sleep. It may sound counterintuitive, considering we sleep at night in the darkness, but it’s true.
The sun might force you awake in the morning, but it’s also essential for helping you achieve restful sleep at night. That’s because your body relies on natural light to figure out what time it is, and determine whether to pump out energizing hormones or ones that leave you feeling relaxed and sleepy, like melatonin.
When your hypothalamus—the gland responsible for regulating sleep and energy levels—senses a change in light, it tells your body to ramp up or ramp down its production of the sleep hormone melatonin.
During the day, you feel energized and alert because you don’t produce much melatonin. At night, you produce more, so you feel sleepy.
Unfortunately, in today’s modern world, we are constantly exposed to bright light. We live in artificial lighting with our smartphones, tablets, and laptops close to our faces. Because these tech devices emit bright blue light right into our eyes, our brain misinterprets the light as sunlight. If, like most people, you use these devices at night, they’re actually encouraging your brain to keep you awake.
Artificial lighting is very disruptive to sleep. Fortunately, you can counteract the effects of artificial lighting. At night, wear blue-light blocking glasses when you use your tech devices or better still stop using your tech devices at bedtime.
Stress causes insomnia by making it difficult to fall asleep and to stay asleep and by affecting the quality of your sleep.
A sleep deficit can make you feel mentally slower and more emotional, which can exacerbate your experience of stress. Dealing with lasting insomnia can cause stress, too, which can lead to more stress-related insomnia.
Taking steps to manage your stress is very critical for achieving deeper, more restful sleep.
When losing sleep becomes a regular occurrence, bedtime itself can become stressful. If you’ve reached this point, there are a few things you can do to take the stress off of insomnia.
Start winding down two hours before bedtime. Stop all work and end phone calls to family and friends.Also, avoid caffeine during the afternoon and evening.
The bedroom should be visually pleasing and very comfortable.
One should use the bedroom only for sleep, sex, and changing clothes.
“Waking” activities such as working on the computer, talking with one’s partner, talking on the phone and watching TV should take place out of the bedroom.
If you’re losing sleep due to anxiety, you may be able to relax and get better sleep with a change of perspective. Viewing your situation as a challenge to be faced, rather than a threat, can help you get into an active, decision-making mode rather than remain in an anxious, passive state.
I find walking around my lovely garden a great way to reduce stress!
It is a beautiful sunny July day here in Mooncoin and as our electricity is off for a few hours today I decided to spend some time just relaxing in our garden with our three dogs Bruno,Hachi and Elvis.
I am sitting on a deckchair at the moment trying to work on this website but finding it rather difficult as our rescue dog Elvis keeps jumping on my lap looking for rubs and attention!
I find rubbing my foxhounds fur very relaxing and his need for attention and love from me builds up my self esteem ♥️
I am reading a great book at the moment which builds up self confidence it is called I am Enough!
These three words can change your life, when you say it, think it and believe it!
This book is designed to help you massively increase your own sense of self worth so that you like yourself, feel good about yourself and believe in yourself, I highly recommend it!
If you are not a big reader there are audible versions too so you could do some exercise such as go for a walk in the surrounding area while building up your self esteem!
Another way of increasing self worth is spending time in nature! As it was such a beautiful sunny day I took numerous photos of the shrubs, trees and roses we have growing in our garden. See a selection of these pictures below, I hope you enjoy looking at them😊
It would be great if you could all take some photos of plants,trees and flowers you have growing in your garden and share them in the comment section below,I would really love to view them😊
Herbal teas are popular beverage choices when it comes time to relax and unwind.For centuries, they have been used around the world as natural sleep remedies.
Below are five herbal teas to drink before bedtime.
Not only is the smell super soothing, lavender tea has medicinal properties that act as a great sleep aid.
Many people prefer to drink this tea in the evening, as a pre-bedtime beverage, because it has anxiolytic and relaxant properties. If you suffer from insomnia or regular sleep disturbances, a simple glass of lavender tea can grant an undisturbed night of sleep and a refreshed feeling in the morning!
There is evidence that certain smells can have an effect on your sleep by decreasing heart rate and blood pressure, putting you at a relaxed state. When choosing the “smell” route, you can put a few drops of lavender oil on your pillow or in an aromatherapy diffuser.
You can also try lavender essential oils or lotions to achieve a good night’s rest. Place two to three drops of lavender oil in your hands, and then sniff the oil. After smelling the oil, rub it on your wrist or temples. Or, use several drops of lavender oil in your bath before bedtime.
Chamomile might calm you down or even make you a bit drowsy. But it’s not, in any fashion, a depressant, like alcohol or a sleeping pill. It just doesn’t have that chemical structure. In fact, it can be a lower risk alternative to depressants.
Chamomile Tea is soothing enough to help you get to sleep, but also mild enough to calm you down while still keeping you alert (during a work or school day, for example). So keep drinking!
Chamomile is full of antioxidants and antimicrobial properties that benefit your overall health.
Chamomile is by far the most recommended natural sleep aid that there is. It’s caffeine-free, contains no cholesterol and it’s proven to reduce stress and anxiety, among other things.
It’s also great for those suffering from cholesterol and diabetes.
Valerian root is often referred to as “nature’s Valium.” In fact, this herb has been used since ancient times to promote tranquility and improve sleep.Valerian has been shown to be remarkably safe for most people.
A lesser known herbal tea, but valerian acts as a mild sedative with phytochemicals sending a message to our brains to tell us to sleep .
Valerian tea is often recommended for those suffering from anxiety, mood swings and insomnia.
In addition to decreasing anxiety in response to acute stress, valerian root may also help with chronic conditions characterized by anxious behaviors, such as generalized anxiety disorder or obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
It appears to be safe and non-habit forming when taken at the recommended dosage. In some cases, it may be able to replace benzodiazepines and similar drugs.
Nevertheless, it’s important to speak with your doctor before taking valerian, especially if you’re taking other medications or have a serious health condition.
It’s a classic and for good reason. Peppermint tea is known for helping with our digestion, however, this, in turn, helps the body relax and prepare for sleep.
The mint flavour calms and relaxes the body and mind and can even help encourage pleasant dreams .
While the fact peppermint lowers blood sugar is often listed in the precautions sections , it can also be a good thing. In a pinch, someone who needs to get their sugar levels under control can down a cup of peppermint tea, or some other peppermint product.
Peppermint contains quite a bit more than just menthol. It is also loaded with calcium, vitamin B and potassium, all things which are great for giving your immune system a boost.
Drinking peppermint tea on a regular basis can help keep these compounds at higher levels in your body, possibly working to keep you from getting sick. A cup of tea a day keeps the doctor away!
Ginger and Turmeric
Ginger and turmeric make for the perfect combination when it comes to tea as it helps aid digestive problems, which again helps us sleep.
Packed with antibiotic and anti-viral agents, it works wonders for our overall health.
When you combine ginger with turmeric, you get the perfect herbal tea with anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties.
The combination of these two ingredients also helps in creating an effective sleep aid. One of the best things about turmeric and ginger tea is that it is easy to make as you probably have the two ingredients readily available in your kitchen.
Herbal teas are fantastic as they not only help you relax and relieve stress and anxiety but also come with many other health benefits, such as fighting cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure, etc.
If you are tired of sleepless nights, do not head to the chemist for OTC sleep aids. Try out different herbal teas instead and find out which one works best for you.
People of all ages, sexes and races can and do have arthritis, and it is the leading cause of disability worldwide.
People with diagnosed diabetes are nearly twice as likely to have arthritis, indicating a diabetes-arthritis connection.
Certain forms of arthritis may be more common in people with certain types of diabetes.
People with type 2 diabetes have higher risks of developing osteoarthritis and gout, which is likely on account of the fact that obesity increases the risk of type 2 diabetes as well as these forms of arthritis.
People with type 1 diabetes have significantly higher risks of having rheumatoid arthritis. Both conditions are autoimmune diseases and research suggests that certain genes may increase the risk of both conditions.
The classic sign of any autoimmune condition is inflammation and that may be the link between these two diseases. In diabetes, the immune system attacks the pancreas, whereas in inflammatory arthritis it attacks the joint tissues.
Diabetes causes musculoskeletal changes that lead to symptoms such as joint pain and stiffness, swelling,nodules under the skin, particularly in the fingers,tight, thickened skin, trigger finger,carpal tunnel syndrome, painful shoulders and severely affected feet.After having had diabetes for several years, joint damage called diabetic arthropathy can occur.
Another reason so many people with diabetes develop arthritis, and vice versa, could be a matter of shared risk factors and lifestyle behaviors. Non-modifiable risk factors, such as your age, gender and genetic make-up, are primary ingredients for a diagnosis of either arthritis or diabetes.
Similarly, modifiable risk factors that include smoking, diet, obesity, and physical activity also affect your likelihood of developing either arthritis or type 2 diabetes.
Research and experts agree physical activity is essential. The benefits of exercise include improved physical function and mobility, reduced blood glucose levels and weight control . All of these factors can affect disease progression and lower your risk of complications in diabetes and arthritis.
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) causes your joints to become stiff, swollen, and painful. As a result, you may not want to exercise. One study found that 42% of people with RA aren’t physically active. Not staying active raises your risk for type 2 diabetes.
Being in control of both arthritis and diabetes is possible through good management, self-care and consistent physical activity.
Medical Treatments For Arthritis
Arthritis treatment focuses on relieving symptoms and improving joint function. You may need to try several different treatments, or combinations of treatments, before you determine what works best for you.
The medications used to treat arthritis vary depending on the type of arthritis. Commonly used arthritis medications include:
1.Analgesics These medications help reduce pain, but have no effect on inflammation. Examples include acetaminophen (Tylenol, others), tramadol (Ultram, Ultracet, others) and narcotics containing oxycodone (Percocet, Oxycontin, others) or hydrocodone (Norco, Vicoprofen, others).
2.Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) NSAIDs reduce both pain and inflammation. Over-the-counter NSAIDs include ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others) and naproxen sodium (Aleve). Some types of NSAIDs are available only by prescription. Oral NSAIDs can cause stomach irritation, and some may increase your risk of heart attack or stroke. Some NSAIDs are also available as creams or gels, which can be rubbed on joints.
3.Counterirritants Some varieties of creams and ointments contain menthol or capsaicin, the ingredient that makes hot peppers spicy. Rubbing these preparations on the skin over your aching joint may interfere with the transmission of pain signals from the joint itself.
4.Disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARDs) Often used to treat rheumatoid arthritis, DMARDs slow or stop your immune system from attacking your joints. Examples include methotrexate (Trexall) and hydroxychloroquine (Plaquenil).
5.Biologic response modifiers Typically used in conjunction with DMARDs, biologic response modifiers are genetically engineered drugs that target various protein molecules that are involved in the immune response. Examples include etanercept (Enbrel) and infliximab (Remicade).
6.Corticosteroids This class of drug, which includes prednisone and cortisone, reduces inflammation and suppresses the immune system. Corticosteroids can be taken orally or be injected directly into the painful joint.
If conservative measures don’t help, your doctor may suggest surgery, such as:
1.Joint repair. In some instances, joint surfaces can be smoothed or realigned to reduce pain and improve function. These types of procedures can often be performed arthroscopically — through small incisions over the joint.
2.Joint replacement. This procedure removes your damaged joint and replaces it with an artificial one. Joints most commonly replaced are hips and knees.
3.Joint fusion. This procedure is more often used for smaller joints, such as those in the wrist, ankle and fingers. It removes the ends of the two bones in the joint and then locks those ends together until they heal into one rigid unit.
Arthritis that follows joint injury could be prevented by adhering to safety regulations and trying to avoid becoming injured.
Arthritis related to infection (for examples, septic arthritis, reactive arthritis, Whipple’s disease) could be prevented by not becoming infected in the first place!
This can be avoided by taking more antibiotics!
Natural Treatments For Arthritis
Doctors traditionally treat arthritis with anti-inflammatory medications and painkillers. However, some medications cause side effects, and a natural approach to pain relief is becoming more popular.
Remember always to consult your doctor before trying these natural remedies.
Your weight can make a big impact on the amount of pain you experience from arthritis. Extra weight puts more pressure on your joints ,especially your knees, hips, and feet.
Reducing the stress on your joints by losing weight will improve your mobility, decrease pain, and prevent future damage to your joints.
Losing one pound removes four pounds of pressure on swollen, painful joints. Maintain a healthy weight by combining a balanced diet with regular physical activity. Make sure you choose food from the five important food groups (fruits, vegetable, lean protein, low-fat dairy and whole grains). Try to do 30 minutes of low-impact exercise five days a week.
While there is no specific “diet” that people with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), should follow, researchers have identified certain foods that can help control inflammation. Many of them are found in the so-called Mediterranean diet, which emphasizes fish, vegetables and olive oil, among other staples.
Certain types of fish are rich in inflammation-fighting omega-3 fatty acids, which reduce C-reactive protein (CRP) and interleukin-6, two inflammatory proteins in your body. How much: At least 3 to 4 ounces, twice a week Best sources: Salmon, tuna, sardines, anchovies and other cold-water fish.
I enjoyed a walk along the river Suir today in Carrig a town near me!As you can see from the picture below it is a beautiful river with lovely scenery and plenty of activity this Saturday morning!
I loved to see all the people enjoying the river,they were walking their dogs,cycling their bikes,listening to music while keeping fit,talking and laughing or just doing some fishing like the man you see in the picture below!
The man below didnt see me taking this picture I hope he doesn’t mind!
He was too busy concentrating on what he was doing,I think this is a good thing.I am inclined to daydream a lot and not focus on what is happening around me,so today I thought I would take some pictures!
Fishing looks like a very relaxing and healthy hobby!I especially like the thought that people enjoy fishing,it’s not just that fish is good for you to eat,even trying to catch fish is an enjoyable experience,there is a sense of achievement!
Every person you meet on a walk has a story to tell!People who were walking their dogs looked happy and relaxed,even an old man walking his little terrier was enjoying the river,a young man was sitting on the bench with his red setter and golden retriever relaxed and playing with his two dogs!
That’s what I find people love to go for a walk especially in the summertime,it’s early July and the weather is not great,a bit dull for this time of the year as you can see from the picture above!
Also I think people love to talk more than we think!For example I stopped to ask the young man about his two dogs because as you know from this website I love dogs!
He was friendly and nice although we were strangers!I hope you all enjoyed this little story and if you did please let me know all about the things you notice and see when you go for a walk as I would love to hear all about it!
Fruits and vegetables are packed with antioxidants, which support the immune system – the body’s natural defense system – and may help fight inflammation. How much: At least 1½ to 2 cups of fruit and 2 to 3 cups of veggies per meal Best sources: Colorful foods such as blueberries, blackberries, cherries, strawberries, spinach, kale and broccoli
Nuts are full of inflammation-fighting monounsaturated fat, protein and filling fiber, too – a bonus if you’re trying to lose a few pounds. How much: Eat 1.5 ounces of nuts daily (about a handful) Best sources: Walnuts, pine nuts, pistachios and almonds
Beans have several antioxidant and anti-inflammatory compounds. They’re a low-cost source of fiber, protein, folic acid and minerals such as magnesium, iron, zinc and potassium. How much: At least one cup, twice a week Best sources: Try pinto, black, red kidney and garbanzo beans
Olive oil contains heart-healthy monounsaturated fat, antioxidants and oleocanthal, a compound that can lower inflammation and pain. How much: Two to three tablespoons per day for cooking or in salad dressings or other dishes Best sources: Extra virgin olive oil is less refined and processed. It retains more nutrients than standard varieties. For optimal freshness and quality, opt for oils close to the purchase date.
Sesame coated tuna steak with broad bean, lime and coriander stir-fry. This has a lovely Asian/European fusion thing going on. I love combining multiple influences, it opens up a whole new world of cuisine.
SERVES 1 1 leek, sliced 2 garlic cloves, finely sliced 1 tbsp olive oil sea salt 300g canned broad beans, drained 2 handfuls of baby spinach 1 tsp soy sauce juice of ½ lime 1 sprig of coriander 4–5 tbsp sesame seeds 1 tuna steak.
Sauté the leek and garlic in the oil, with a good pinch of sea salt, until the leek has softened. Add the broad beans and spinach and stir-fry until the spinach has wilted.
Add the soy sauce and lime juice, then tear in the coriander. Mix well, then set aside.
Sprinkle the sesame seeds out over a large plate. Roll the tuna steak through the seeds several times to ensure it is fully coated.
Gently fry the tuna steak over a low heat (so the seeds do not brown too much) for five minutes, turning. This will give the tuna a seared/pinky finish at this temperature.
If you prefer your tuna cooked more thoroughly, keep going for longer, turning regularly. Warm through the broad bean stir-fry, then place in the centre of the serving plate.
Cut the tuna steak in half to reveal the pink centre, then lay the two halves over the stir-fry. Serve.
Best Spices for Arthritis
The more anti-inflammatory foods and spices you eat, the more you are reducing chronic inflammation.When you have arthritis, your joints and sometimes other parts of your body become inflamed, and many spices inhibit inflammation.
With that in mind,here are some spices to consider the next time you are in the kitchen.
Garlic is a tasty addition to just about any savory dish. Garlic can help fight the pain, inflammation and cartilage damage of arthritis.
Opt for fresh garlic from the produce section of your market because preservatives may be added to bottled garlic and processing may decrease some of its strength.
Curcumin is the active chemical in turmeric root. Several human trials have shown an anti-inflammatory benefit, which can translate to reduced joint pain and swelling. The yellow spice is popular in curries and other Indian dishes. It is most effective in combination with black pepper, which helps the body absorb it better so eat the two together when possible.
Along with its anti-inflammatory properties, some studies have shown ginger can also reduce osteoarthritis symptoms.
Ginger is a versatile spice and can go in both sweet and savory dishes. It’s best to use it in its fresh form. A great way to add ginger to your diet is to boil it into a tea: Put a one- to two-inch piece of fresh ginger root in boiling water for a few minutes.
Cinnamon contains cinnamaldehyde and cinnamic acid, both of which have antioxidant properties that help inhibit cell damage caused by free radicals.
Cinnamon is delicious mixed with oatmeal or added to smoothies. Used in combination with other foods and spices, it may offer a cumulative anti-inflammatory effect over the course of the day.
Chili peppers contain natural compounds called capsaicinoids, which have anti-inflammatory properties. Cayenne and other dried chilies spice up sauces, marinades and rubs. Chilies can be hot, so start with just a dash or two.
When trying a new spice, start small and add more after you’ve taste-tested your dish. Anywhere from a half teaspoon to a full teaspoon is generally a good place to start for most spices, except cayenne (start with a ¼ tsp or less of cayenne).
And remember the wide variety of foods you can spice up. They are wonderful in rubs, marinades and sauces, on steamed or roasted vegetables, mixed into pasta, potatoes, rice, couscous and quinoa and in soups and stews.
Get More Exercise
There are more benefits to exercise than just weight loss. Regular movement helps to maintain flexibility in your joints. Weight-bearing exercises such as running and walking can be beneficial. Also, try low-impact exercises such as water aerobics or swimming to flex your joints without adding further stress.
A little gentle stretching can make a big difference.Reach your arms above your head, point and flex your toes, roll your ankles and gently move your head side to side. Rock your hips left to right, bend and straighten one knee at a time. Repeat until you feel less stiff.
Physical therapists can provide various ways to reduce strain and pressure on painful and swollen joints. These include manual therapy and counseling on proper positioning and body movement. They can also recommend assistive devices such as braces and splints to support joints and shoe inserts to relieve stress on the lower extremities.
Gentle manipulation with moderate pressure has been shown to reduce joint pain and stiffness, and even improve motion. However, timing is important. Listen to your body. Massage may not be as helpful during a very active flare when joints are especially tender and sensitive.
These gels work by stimulating sensory nerve endings in the skin and the body responds by reducing pain signals through the nervous system. Voltaren Gel and capsaicin cream are two options.
Often used by physical therapists and chiropractors, transcutaneous electrical stimulation (TENS) is a form of electrical stimulation used to relieve pain. Small electrodes are placed on the affected area and electromagnetic current is delivered through the skin.
Hot and Cold Treatments
Simple hot and cold treatments can make a world of difference when it comes to arthritis pain. Long, warm showers or baths , especially in the morning , help ease stiffness in your joints. Use an electric blanket or moist heating pad at night to keep your joints loose.
Cold treatments are best for relieving joint pain, swelling, and inflammation. Wrap a gel ice pack or a bag of frozen vegetables in a towel and apply it to painful joints for quick relief.
Natural sunlight sends signals to your brain and body to wake up. It can also raise levels of the neurotransmitter serotonin in your brain, which is linked to better moods. Open your blinds or curtains as soon as you wake up to help stay focused and refreshed.
A vitamin D deficiency can affect both physical and mental health, but many people have low levels of vitamin D without realizing. The physical symptoms of a deficiency may include muscle pain in the joints, including rheumatoid arthritis (RA) pain, which often occurs in the knees, legs, and hips.
Vitamin D builds and maintains strong bones, aids with calcium absorption,helps prevent osteoporosis and helps regulate cells responsible for autoimmune functions.
Most of us are probably aware of the overall benefits of drinking water – it prevents kidney infections, keeps our skin cells strong, supports our immune system and generally keeps things ticking over. On average, we should be drinking about 8-10 glasses of plain water a day, depending on our gender and lifestyle.
Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune illness where the immune system starts to attack the tissues surrounding the joints. It normally presents itself in the smaller joints such as the fingers or toes, and can be exacerbated by dehydration.
This is why it is critical that we continue to drink water as it can stimulate our production of synovial fluid, reduce inflammation around the joint and encourage the growth of new cells in the cartilage tissues.
Physiotherapy is an important part of treatment for most people with arthritis.Various forms of physiotherapy can be a great help in relieving the pain brought on by arthritis. A physiotherapist will be able to give you a better understanding of how arthritis will affect your joints and muscles. They’ll also be able to give you some useful advice on how to manage your pain with some physiotherapy.
Treatment may include:
A programme of specific exercises
General advice on increasing your activity level
Pain-relief treatments such as heat or ice packs, TENS (transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation) machines, massage, manipulation, acupuncture or taping
Providing walking aids or splints to help you stay mobile and independent.
Keeping active is very important when you have arthritis. Many people are afraid that exercise will increase their pain or cause further damage to their joints, but your joints are designed to move and the muscles and tissues around them become weaker if they’re not used.
Your physiotherapist can advise you on increasing your activity level at a rate you can cope with and on finding the right balance between rest and activity.
It’s important to start gently, pace yourself and gradually increase your activity. You may have a slight increase in pain when you first start, but this should improve as your confidence and strength increase.
Graded exercise starts slowly and increases in small steps. This will help you to strengthen your muscles and joints and increase your fitness. Improving your general fitness and stamina will help you to increase your activity level without increasing your pain.
Regular exercise will also stimulate production of your body’s own natural pain-relieving hormones (endorphins).The important thing is to find a form of exercise you enjoy so you do it regularly.
Both environmental and genetic factors play a role in who gets rheumatoid arthritis, and smoking is considered one of the most important environmental risk factors.
Smoking is linked to the development of rheumatoid arthritis, particularly for people who have smoked 20 years or longer.
Research shows that smoking is harmful to your bones, joints and connective tissue as well. No matter what form of arthritis you have, you’ll be doing your joints and yourself a favor by quitting.
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