Archive for » January 10th, 2014 «

Food Chemicals That Trigger Migraine Headaches

Do you suffer from headaches after eating something? It is possible that you are suffering from a migraine headache. Certain chemicals that people eat can trigger the headache and cause a lot of discomfort. Identifying what trigger the headaches is an integral part of migraine management. Triggers are not the same and vary from one sufferer to the next. Here are the chemicals that you should be aware of in order to avoid migraine headaches.

Tyramine is a protein that is produced as dairy products are fermented. Tyramine is prevalent in hard cheese, cheddar and other aged cheeses. It is also present in fermented soy products, sauerkraut, bananas, pineapples and figs. Tyramine is the leading trigger of migraine that is why it is being restricted to some people. Tyramine is also a leading cause of high blood pressure.

Alcohol can cause dehydration which can cause headaches. Wine and beer are fermented products and also rich in tyramine. It is best to drink alcohol and water alternately to prevent dehydration. Alcohol can cause migraine headache which is on top of hangover. If possible avoid alcohol by drinking fruit juices or to stick with water. Alcohol is known to improve the taste of tobacco causing smokers to stick with smoking even they know the health impact of smoking.

Monosodium glutamate
Monosodium glutamate is a known ingredient especially in oriental or Asian cooking. MSG is an additive designed to enhance the flavor and bring forth the fifth taste known as umami. MSG can cause certain allergies that may include headaches. It is best to test your reaction to MSG by eating certain food with MSG. If you feel some discomfort after eating MSG then you may need to ask your Chinese take-out provider not to put MSG on your food.

Aspartame is known as an artificial sweetener. It is not calorie dense making it great for low-calorie foods and drinks. However, since it is a synthetic chemical it can cause allergy and is a known trigger for migraine. It is best to find other sweeteners such as sucralose or to avoid products that are artificially sweetened. It is best to eat more fruits and vegetables than to eat processed food that can make your discomfort from migraine headache worse.

Gluten is a protein that is often found in such grains like barley and rye. It is also found in some wheat products. There are people that are intolerant of gluten that can lead to migraine headaches, nausea or vomiting. It is best to get tested for gluten intolerance first so you can avoid foods that contain this offensive protein.

Migraine IIMigraine is often remedied with pain killers but it can create more problems than it solves. It is better to avoid the triggers. A food diary will enable you to track what foods are offensive and can cause migraine attacks. The quality of life will improve if you are able to avoid the triggers that cause your migraine headaches.


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Smoke Gets To Your Ears: Effects And Treatments

6530412913_ce8d69f2c4_z_large_verge_medium_landscapeSmoking can impact your lungs, mouth and throat. There is no question about that. But can it also impact your ears? It can. Hearing loss is another reason why it is important to quit smoking. The worse news is the fact that non-smokers can also increase their risk of hearing impairment due to second-hand smoking. Get to know how smoking can make you deaf and how to avert it from happening.

Inner ear health
Smoking increases the bad cholesterol in the body. Cholesterol affects the hair cells inside your ears. The cholesterol seems to be preventing the growth of inner hair cells in the ear. Researchers are still figuring out what is the exact effect of the thinning number of hair cells inside the ears. However, it is theorized that the hair cells can lower the ability of the ears to hear effectively. The hair cells are known to improve the reception of the sounds that go through the ears.

Hypoxia can occur in the cochlea which can cause hearing loss. Like any part of the human body, hypoxia, which is the lack of blood supply, can cause cellular damage that will lead to tissue and hearing impairment. Cochlea is the part of the ear that is swimming in fluids and blood. If the blood supply is inadequate it can lead to hearing damage.

Nerve damage
Another concern that doctors raise about smoking and its relation to ear health is the disruption of nerve transmissions. Nicotine has this nasty effect on the neurotransmitters which can impact the auditory nerve. If the chemical reactions are messed up with it may cause a malfunction in the hearing. This may send the wrong signals to the brain and cause people to mishear things and unable to perceive sound as it should be.

Toxic effects
Adolescent smoking is very alarming. Adolescents have less developed ears and as such the toxins may impact the nerve endings. The nicotine can also damage the nerve endings that can lead to poor hearing at best and hearing loss at worse. Free radicals in the cigarette smoke can also lead to poor formation of tissues that can lead to hearing loss.

Cotinine rise
Second-hand smokers are known to have high levels of cotinine. More often it can cause hearing loss. Cotinine is the by-product of nicotine and is used a leading indicator if a person is a passive smoker. There have been tests that people with high cotinine levels are unable to hear high-frequencies and the degradation of the hearing continued as passive smokers remained exposed to smoking. This is also true with former smokers.

Smoking can affect the hearing too. It is best to have the ears checked as soon as a smoker quits smoking. Eating fruits and vegetables to get anti-oxidants can also help to balance the levels of free radicals and avert further damage. Fiber can also help as a form of broom to sweep the toxins that can further damage the cells and inner ear hair and impact hearing quality.

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Anti-Oxidants: Nature’s Anti-Aging Shield

antioxidants_fruit_Juice_drYou have probably heard about anti-oxidants? Perhaps you have read somewhere or caught a glimpse while shopping along the vitamins and minerals aisle at the supermarket. But what it is all about? Anti-oxidants are necessary to build a great and healthy body. While media has hyped anti-oxidants to the point that it has become a catchphrase about anything that is healthy—it cannot be denied that it works. Anti-0xidants can help slow down the aging, help fight certain cancers and even prevent the onset of chronic diseases, inflammation and even help maintain a great mental health. Let’s learn more about this wonder nutrient that has taken humanity and your local grocery store by storm.

What are anti-oxidants?
Anti-oxidants are nature’s best defense that the body can use to maintain good health. These are natural compounds that are found in some foods that you commonly eat every day. Anti-oxidants role is to neutralize the free radical that occurs also naturally in the body. Free radicals are substances that are also found inside the body but cause damage to fats, proteins and the DNA make-up of cells. This in turn may lead to diseases and accelerate the aging process.

Anti-oxidants are molecules that are interacting with free radicals and eliminate the chair reaction that can cause damage to the body and the skin. While there are some enzymes that can fight free radicals, anti-oxidants are one of the most efficient ways to bring down the ill effects of free radicals. Beta-carotene, vitamin C, vitamin E and selenium are the best anti-oxidants that are available for humans.

The body cannot make anti-oxidants on their own but needs to be supplied from the food that we eat or even from the supplements that we take.

What are free radicals?
Free radicals find its way inside the body through the food that we eat each day. When the body converts the food into energy, free radicals are produced. Other free radicals are sourced from the air that we breathe and even the action of the sunrays.

Smoking is one way to increase the levels of free radicals in the body. The smoke billowing from a tobacco contains numerous chemicals and at least 70 carcinogens that can cause cancers. Majority of the smoke that comes from smoking are oxidants. This is among of the things that make tobacco smoke dangerous to the health.

Is it a magic bullet?
While current research point out that anti-oxidants can help improve health it is not a magic bullet that will solve all health woes. Research has been quick to point out that vitamin C, E and beta-carotene are able to provide enough shield to fight cancer, cardiovascular diseases and other chronic health problems.

Are anti-oxidants the same?
Not quite. Anything that protects the cells from oxidation is technically can be called an anti-oxidant. There are other anti-oxidants that are not really nutrients like flavonoids, polyphenols and isoflavones. In fact there are 8,000 kinds of anti-oxidants that have been identified.

Do we really need it?
Anti-oxidants have shown to be able to protect the collagen in the skin. Often the damage caused by free radicals to the collagen causes fine lines to appear and also some wrinkles on the skin which is an indication of aging. People with bad collagen supply tend to appear older than they are supposed to be.

There have been studies that taking anti-oxidants improved eye health especially slowing down vision loss due to age-related macular degeneration. However, it has not been successful in preventing vision loss due to cataracts.

There have been several studies showing promise for anti-oxidants that would benefit cancer patients. Several patients that took beta-carotene have shown some reduction in cancer risk. Another study showed that selenium intake has shown promise a significant decrease to cancer risk especially to the colon, lung and prostate.

Anti-oxidants are helpful but they are not the only ones that can make the body healthy. Obviously, it would take more than just anti-oxidants to arrest the decline of the body due to the ravage of time. Diet and exercise are equally important plus living a life that is free from stress and anxiety completes the equation.

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