Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Acid Reflux Treatments

Acid reflux is a condition characterized by the backflow (reflux) of food and acids from the stomach, which causes a burning sensation up and down the esophagus and damages its inner lining. Depending on the composition of the refluxed contents and the frequency of the refluxes, acid reflux varies from an inconvenient, but common bodily experience for most people, to a damaging disorder troubling 20% of the population. If you’re one of the millions of Americans suffering from an acid reflux disease, here is a list of acid reflux treatments options available for you: Diet and Lifestyle Changes. For those suffering from mild cases of acid reflux, implementing positive lifestyle changes is a very effective acid reflux treatment. This involves altering your diet to avoid foods that trigger reflux; eating foods that can reduce your stomach’s acidity; avoiding unhealthy habits like smoking and drinking; and changing your wardrobe to avoid tight-fitting belts and clothes that squeeze your stomach. Adopting a stress management plan is also a good acid reflux treatment, especially for patients whose conditions are caused by stress-related stomach upsets. Drug Therapy. When lifestyle changes are not enough to relieve patients of acid reflux, patients can decrease manifestations and relieve themselves of symptoms by taking medications. Medications for acid reflux treatment include antacids, histamine receptor antagonists, cholinergic drugs, gastrointestinal stimulants, and proton pump inhibitors, which either controls the stomach’s production of gastric acids or strengthens the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) to prevent the backflow of gastric contents. However, regardless if the medications used for acid reflux treatment are over-the-counter drugs or prescription medication, patients must always remember to consult their doctors before taking any medicine to avoid long-term side effects caused by the medication. Also, since certain drugs have adverse reactions to other medication, getting advice from doctors is necessary in using acid reflux medications. Surgery. In cases where medication fails to relieve patients of their condition, surgery can serve as a last resort for acid reflux treatment. Depending on the severity and intensity of the case, surgery can provide permanent relief and cure to acid reflux patients by correcting the physiological abnormalities causing the disease. This involves repairing the defective esophageal valve and increasing the pressure in the LES by either tightening the walls in the esophagusor reshaping the LES to prevent acids from leaking into the throat. However, although surgery is considered an effective acid reflux treatment with 95% of patients completely recovering, it is important for individuals considering surgery to be aware of the risks involved, which includes abnormal peristalsis, wound infection, constrictions, difficulty swallowing, an inability to burp, and perforation or damage to neighboring tissues. Alternative Treatments. Aside from the medical acid reflux treatment options already mentioned, there are also alternative treatments available to patients of acid reflux. These treatments include a variety of homemade herbal remedies and homeopathic solutions like herbal teas, and even ancient healing methods like acupressure and acupuncture. Given the variety of acid reflux treatment options available for patients, people suffering from acid reflux can better determine the most effective cure for their conditions. However, regardless of the acid reflux treatment a patient chooses, it is best to always consult a physician before undergoing a specific acid reflux treatment to ensure that adverse side-effects are prevented.

Acid Reflux Food to Avoid

gastroesophageal reflux disease sufferers struggle upon. Promoting healthy nutrition that is based on avoiding certain foods while increasing the intake of others has the potential to confer significant long-term health benefits among acid reflux sufferers. Lifestyle and dietary alterations are considered to be an integral and inseparable part of any long-term holistic GERD treatment. The foods we consume play an important role when it comes to keeping our body’s delicate natural inner balance. Since certain foods and dietary habits have been found to directly and indirectly promote the aggravation of acid reflux, avoiding those foods and adopting specific dietary habits for optimal digestion while suffering from acid reflux could have a tremendously positive effect on your existing medical condition. The following are examples of these types of foods: 1. Coffee and other caffeine containing beverages lead to increased acidity, so avoid large amounts of coffee. Try to limit your daily coffee consumption to two cups or less. It possible, split your coffee cup into two half cups, and reduce coffee drinking before the bedtime. 2. Alcohol can irritate the stomach and relax the LES muscle, leading to increased acidity and reflux. 3. High-fat foods are among the biggest culprits behind GERD symptoms. They take longer to digest and not easily eliminated out of body, thus increasing the chances acid will splash up into your esophagus. The only exceptions are omega-3 fatty acids from fish and fish oil, which are in fact powerful anti-inflammatory agents. 4. Chocolate contains a great deal of caffeine and fat. This may increase acidity and worsen digestion and hence should be avoided. If you are a devoted chocolate enthusiast, go for dark, organic varieties, and eat no more then two to three tiny squares two to three times per week. 5. Milk and milk-based products that contain a big proportion of calcium should also be avoided before bedtime. 6. Peppermint, spearmint and other mints can worsen acid reflux symptoms. Avoid foods that contain strong mints, including mint-based herbal teas. 7. Acid forming foods, for instance: tomatoes, citrus fruits, meat products. So what acid reflux food should you avoid? With these dietary changes and a healthy motivation to alter your lifestyle, you can be on your way to overcoming gastroesophageal reflux disease and improving the quality of your life and well-being. Whatever your medical condition is, when you finally decide to improve your quality of life, you can literally choose to cure GERD and prevent its recurrence, by adopting the holistic approach. You will have the power to make it happen.

Acid reflux cure

Many people today are afflicted with heartburn. If they eat food that is too spicy, they get heartburn. If they sleep the wrong way, they get heartburn. If they eat too fast they get heartburn. There can be many causes for heartburn, also known as acid reflux, and the way heartburn affects people is variable as well. If this all sounds too familiar to you then you need a good acid reflux cure. You don’t need to suffer unnecessarily. Not all acid reflux cures work the same for everybody though. People have different lifestyles and because of that cures will have different effects on different people. Some people can use simple, non-medical cures because they lead a relatively healthy lifestyle. Other people have had acid reflux problems for a longer time and might need a prescribed acid reflux cure from their family doctor. Some acid reflux cures can be found in your own kitchen. Baking soda and water can ease the discomfort of heartburn for most people and costs next to nothing. Warm milk may help someone suffering from mild heartburn and help them sleep better in the evening. An over the counter acid reflux cure, in liquid or in pill form, may be the next step if simple home remedies do not work for you. However, if none of these remedies are working after being used for a period of a week or more it may be time to search out other options. A little bit of research online may open your eyes to the many ways that acid reflux can be treated. You’ll find home remedies and over the counter medications that can be found in most drugstores, as mentioned above. You’ll also find that there is a wide array of herbal remedies that claim to be proven natural remedies and 100% effective. An herbal acid reflux cure can be helpful and may work where other cures have not. You should remember that herbal remedies are not for everyone though. If you are pregnant, have a pre-existing condition like kidney disease, diabetes or other conditions, or are a child or older adult, you should speak to your doctor before beginning to use an herbal acid reflux cure. Many herbal remedies are not safe for people who have medical conditions that are being treated by a doctor. You can improve your lifestyle today if acid reflux is impairing your ability to experience a full and active lifestyle. By learning more about cures and remedies you can find an acid reflux cure that will work for you. You don’t need to suffer from acid reflux anymore.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Avocados in your healthy life

The United States is the world's number one commercial producer of avocados. It is a major cash crop in Southern California and southern Florida, and to a much lesser degree in Texas. California has about 80 percent of the United States' market and their avocados are available twelve months of the year.

The avocado has a unique flavor and texture. All other tree fruits have either a tart, tart-sweet, or sweet flavor and a juicy texture. The avocado looks like a huge green olive and, like the olive, has a single hard pit. It is very firm when immature and is rich in oil when it reaches full ripeness.

Depending on the variety, the immature fruit comes in every possible shade of green. Some are smooth and shiny, others are dull and have pebble-grained skins. Some varieties retain their original green color as they ripen. In others, as the fruit ripens the green changes to bronze, reddish purple, or even jet-black. Some varieties are almost round, but for the most part avocados are pear- shaped. Hence they are often called avocado pears.

To test for ripeness, cradle the avocado in the palm of your hand. If it yields to the slightest and gentlest pressure, it is ready to serve, it is a Florida avocado. If it is of the California variety, give it an extra day. Too many avocados are cut and served before they have reached full maturity and flavor. Once the fruit is cut, the ripening process is terminated. So make sure that it does have the slight yield before you cut it.

Avocados are not only flavorful and colorful, but are also blessed with versatility. They can be sliced, diced, pureed or served on the half-shell. They are flavorful enough to serve alone, but also blend well when served with fresh fruit, salad greens, cottage cheese, cold meats and especially seafood. A fully ripe avocado has the consistency of soft butter and makes a delicious and colorful sandwich spread.

A cut avocado, like a sliced peach or banana, will darken and discolor when exposed to air. Sprinkling the exposed surfaces with fresh lemon or lime juice will retard this discoloration. Try to use a cut avocado as soon as possible. In the interim, cover the exposed surfaces with plastic film. If you cut the avocado in half, don't remove the pit until ready to serve.

Avocados are tropical fruits and don't like cool temperatures. Never put a firm avocado in your refrigerator. At best it won't ripen properly, at worst its flesh will turn black.

A black-skinned avocado is a hallmark of quality. The California Hass variety is an ugly duckling that has a dull, pebble-grained green skin when it is immature. As it ripens. the color of the skin turns to jet-black. This least attractive variety is by far the finest-flavored avocado available. When you see this Hass variety, remember that its ugliness is only skin deep.

Top ൫ foods with hidden fat

We all know that chocolates, cakes and cookies are loaded with kilojoules. But what about your other favourite foods? Could hidden fats be lurking in them too?

If you're trying to get your body in shape for the beach, it might be a good idea to take a peek at this list of the top 10 foods with hidden fat – and cut down on them:

1. Mayonnaise Tip: Replace mayonnaise with low-fat dressing or a drop of soya sauce on salads, and rather use low-fat/fat-free yoghurt or cottage cheese in sauces. Simply don't add mayonnaise to that chicken or tuna sandwich – make the sandwich more interesting by adding herbs, black pepper and a slice of tomato.

2. Nuts Tip: Note that nuts should form part of a balanced diet – even though the fat content is quite high, nuts are cholesterol-free and contain good essential fatty acids. But limit your intake of nuts to a handful per week if you're trying to lose weight. And choose lower-fat varieties, like cashews and peanuts, instead of macadamias.

3. Coffee creamer Tip: Coffee creamer is a definite no-no as it's loaded with saturated fat. Simply don't add coffee creamer to your coffee. Rather use low-fat or fat-free milk, or, if you don't have a fridge, settle for milk powder.

4. Peanut butter Tip: Look for the sugar-free variety in your grocery store – while sugar-free peanut butter contains just as much fat, the kilojoules are fewer. Limit your intake of peanut butter to four teaspoons per week.

5. Potato crisps Tip: When you go shopping for snacks, read nutrition labels carefully – the kilojoule and fat values vary considerably from product to product. Good old-fashioned popcorn (not the pre-popped varieties) is a healthier option than most forms of crisps – just don't add butter when you pop it. Pretzels also generally contain less fat than potato crisps (but check the label before you buy).


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