Daily Archives: January 14, 2016

15 Things to Avoid if you have Asthma

1. Dust
Dust, due to its allergy-inducing properties, causes havoc for asthmatics. Therefore it’s absolutely essential that very high levels of hygiene are maintained and that rooms are kept dust-free. This can be achieved by thoroughly vacuuming the entire room including every nook and cranny.

2. Flowers
Pollen from flowers is a known trigger for asthma attacks and one will do well to avoid them. Growing plants indoors can be dangerous too, since they can be a source of mold – which triggers asthma. To avoid the formation of molds, make sure not to overwater plants, keep them in a sunny place and remove dead parts as soon as they appear.

3. Pets
Animal lovers are going to the find the going tough. Research suggests that contact with cats or dogs is extremely dangerous for asthmatics. Not to mention the fact that small pieces of fur, particles of hair, saliva and even skin are all known asthma triggers. Even if the pet is not physically around you, their fur/hair might be in your environment and may pose risks.

4. Smoke and aromas in the kitchen
The smoke and aromas given off when cooking can be a major irritant to asthma sufferers so take steps to reduce such problems. If a proper exhaust fan or chimney is not available, then ensure there is an open window in the kitchen to help the cooking smells to escape outside.

5. Smoking
Cigarette smoke contains different chemicals and gases that can irritate the lungs. Smoking increases your chance of getting asthma. Symptoms such as coughing and wheezing become worse when you smoke. Babies whose mothers smoked during pregnancy have worse lung function and increased risk of wheezing. (Read: 8 steps to manage asthma in children better)

6. Anti-inflammatory drugs
Certain prescription and over-the-counter drugs like aspirin and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (ibuprofen and beta blockers) may trigger asthma attacks. Whenever a doctor is prescribing you medicines, make sure you tell him/her that you suffer from asthma. You may like to read everything about various medicines used to treat asthma.

7. Exercise
Exercise-induced asthma is a type of asthma triggered by vigorous or prolonged exercise or physical exertion. Narrowing of airway begins five to 20 minutes after exercise begins, making it difficult to catch your breath.

8. Extreme weather
Hot and humid weather or extremely cold weather causes asthma symptoms to flare-up. Even though weather is not in our control, asthmatic patients should ensure that they do not expose themselves to varying temperatures in a short time. You may like to read about 4 tips to prevent asthma attacks during winter.

9. Artificial lemon or lime juice
You’d be much better off using real lemon or lime juice. It might take a little extra work, but not only will it taste fresher, you’ll be able to breathe better too.

10. Salt
People suffering from asthma may also want to avoid salt. Scientists have observed since the 1930s that a high-salt diet worsened asthma symptoms in children. Researchers at Indian University studied the phenomenon and found that exercise-induced asthma sufferers who ate a low-salt diet can exhale more air, and need bronchiodiolator drugs less often, than those on a high-salt diet. More than 75 percent of the salt eaten by Americans comes from processed food, and processed foods are also a source of sulfites. For this reason, asthma sufferers should avoid processed foods.

11. Beer, wine, hard cider, juice and tea
Ever wondered why you had trouble breathing after drinking beer, wine or hard cider? Now you do! Sulfites are to blame.

12. Dried fruit or vegetables
Besides typical dried fruits, such as raisins, pineapple, apricots and cranberries, these foods also include things like maraschino cherries and pre-packaged guacomole.

13. Pickled foods
Pickles, peppers and relish, oh my! Avoid anything pickled if you have a reaction to sulfites. Let the jar with murky liquid be the warning sign to stay away.

14. Packaged potatoes
Things like frozen hash browns and french fries and dehydrated potatoes have sulfites, so beware. A healthier substitute would be a baked sweet potato or roasted potatoes with a touch of olive oil.

15. Naturally-occuring sulfites
Other foods with sulfites include asparagus, chives, corn starch, eggs, garlic, leeks, lettuce, maple syrup, salmon, soy products and tomatoes.


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15 Ways to Stay Hydrated

1. Radishes
These refreshing root vegetables should be a fixture in your spring and summer salads. They provide a burst of spicy-sweet flavor—and color!—in a small package, and more importantly they’re filled with antioxidants such as catechin (also found in green tea).

2. Tomatoes
Sliced and diced tomatoes will always be a mainstay of salads, sauces, and sandwiches, but don’t forget about sweet cherry and grape varieties, which make an excellent hydrating snack, Gans says. “They’re great to just pop in your mouth, maybe with some nuts or some low-sodium cheese,” she says. “You get this great explosion of flavor when you bite into them.”

3. Cucumbers
No matter how you slice ‘em and dice ‘em, cucumbers keep cool at the number one spot on the list of water-logged fruits and vegetables. Composed of 96 percent water, cukes have no saturated fat or cholesterol, and are very high in vitamin K, vitamin B6 and iron.

4. Salad Greens
Part of the reason that 2 cups of salad greens has fewer than 15 calories is that greens are more than 90 percent water. They are also packed with nutrients, such as folate, vitamin C, fiber and the antioxidant beta carotene, which helps keep your eyes and skin healthy. Plus, having a salad for lunch (or dinner) is a great way to bang out a couple of veggie servings.

6. Green peppers
Bell peppers of all shades have a high water content, but green peppers lead the pack, just edging out the red and yellow varieties (which are about 92% water). And contrary to popular belief, green peppers contain just as many antioxidants as their slightly sweeter siblings.

7. Grapefruit
This juicy, tangy citrus fruit can help lower cholesterol and shrink your waistline, research suggests. In one study, people who ate one grapefruit a day lowered their bad (LDL) cholesterol by 15.5% and their triglycerides by 27%. In another, eating half a grapefruit—roughly 40 calories—before each meal helped dieters lose about three and a half pounds over 12 weeks. Researchers say that compounds in the fruit help fuel fat burn and stabilize blood sugar, therefore helping to reduce cravings.

8. Cauliflower
Don’t let cauliflower’s pale complexion fool you: In addition to having lots of water, these unassuming florets are packed with vitamins and phytonutrients that have been shown to help lower cholesterol and fight cancer, including breast cancer. (A 2012 study of breast cancer patients by Vanderbilt University researchers found that eating cruciferous veggies like cauliflower was associated with a lower risk of dying from the disease or seeing a recurrence.)

9. Watermelon
Ninety-two percent water (hence the name), watermelon is a good source of vitamin C and, when it’s red (some are orange or yellow), also has lycopene, an antioxidant that may help protect against heart disease and some types of cancer. Enjoy fresh wedges (go ahead and see how far you can spit the seeds) or, better yet, get creative with watermelon recipes.

10. Yogurt
Depending on your preferred type, regular plain yogurt is 85 to 88% water (surprisingly, there’s more water in fuller-fat yogurt). You’ll also get calcium, some B vitamins (namely B12 and riboflavin) and, to be sure you’re getting some good-for-you probiotics, look for a yogurt that carries the “Live & Active Cultures” seal.

11. Papaya
At 88 percent water, this fruit will help you stay hydrated. Better yet, 1 cup delivers 3 grams of fiber for just 55 calories.

12. Strawberries
Even without the shortcake, strawberries are a sweet treat perfect for staying hydrated. They are 92 percent water (the most of any berry) and are loaded with fiber and vitamin C — as if you needed an excuse to sip on this refreshing summer cocktail!

13. Lettuce
Iceberg lettuce may be 96 percent water, but it’s not known for much else in the nutrition department. Richer salad greens and sandwich toppers including butterhead, romaine and spinach are more well-rounded choices and still up your hydration. Need some inspiration? Start with these creative, healthy salads.

14. Coffee
Isn’t coffee a diuretic? Well, yes, but a recent study in PLOS ONE debunks the myth that it also causes dehydration. Not only will your daily cup contribute to your water needs, coffee can also give you a sharper memory, boost athletic endurance and performance, and reduce the risk of many serious ailments including diabetes and heart disease.

15. Baby carrots
A carrot’s a carrot, right? Not when it comes to water content. As it turns out, the baby-sized carrots that have become a staple in supermarkets and lunchboxes contain more water than full-size carrots (which are merely 88.3% water).



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9 Prevention tips for Hay fever

Hay fever, also known as allergic rhinitis, is a common condition that shows signs and symptoms similar to a cold with sneezing, congestion, runny nose and sinus pressures.

1. Reduce your stress
Try to reduce your stress levels. The survey showed a clear link between stress and the severity of hay fever symptoms. Almost seven out of 10 stressed-out hay fever sufferers rate their symptoms as unbearable or debilitating. As stress levels drop, symptoms become milder. For more information, read about stress management.

2. Pinpoint Your Allergy.
The first step in controlling hay fever is to find out what you are allergic to. Maybe you know, from years of hay fever symptoms, that it’s tree or grass pollen in the spring, or ragweed in the fall. If you aren’t sure, see your physician to help diagnose your allergy.

3. If You Do Go Outdoors, Shower After.
If you have hay fever triggered by outdoor allergens, it’s important to shower and wash your hair after spending time outside when the pollen count is high—especially before going to bed. Showering helps remove pollen from your skin and hair and can help prevent a nighttime allergy attack.

4. Take Steps to “Allergy-Proof” Your Home.
There are many ways to limit allergens inside the house. Keep windows closed when pollen/mold counts are high. Prevent mold in the kitchen, bathrooms and household plants. Remove some or all carpets and unnecessary furnishings like throw pillows. Use synthetic pillows and encase mattresses in allergy-free covers. Wash clothing often. Keep pets out of bedrooms.

5. Exercise more
Regular exercise can improve your hay fever. The survey found that people with hay fever who exercise most have the mildest symptoms. Exercise will help reduce your stress levels, too.

6. Eat well
The survey suggests that people with hay fever who eat a healthy diet are less likely to get severe symptoms. Eat a varied, balanced diet with plenty of fruit and vegetables, but be aware than some healthy foods can make hay fever symptoms worse. Foods that can worsen hay fever symptoms for some people include apples, tomatoes, stoned fruits, melons, bananas and celery.

7. Cut down on alcohol
Watch how much you drink at your summer picnics and BBQs! Alcohol worsens hay fever. Beer, wine and spirits contain histamine, the chemical that sets off allergy symptoms in your body. As well as making you more sensitive to pollen, alcohol also dehydrates you, making your symptoms seem worse.

8. Sleep well
Try to avoid too many late nights during the hay fever season. The survey found that people with hay fever who get a good night’s sleep tend to have the mildest symptoms. Just one in eight (13%) people who had at least seven hours sleep a night reported severe symptoms, compared with one in five (21%) who regularly had five hours sleep or less a night.

9. Ask Your Doctor about Medications to Treat Hay Fever.
If it’s not possible to avoid your allergy triggers, over-the-counter (OTC) or prescription medications may be helpful. Available options include nasal sprays, oral medicines—liquids, tablets—and eye drops. Read labels carefully and take all medication as directed.


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22 Home Remedies for Curing Chickenpox

Chickenpox is a viral disease, which is caused by a virus, called Varicella Zoster, and it affects everyone at least once in a lifetime. Two days after getting infection, small, red and itchy blisters appear all over the body. Chickenpox is a contagious infection that quickly spreads from one person to another. Now-a-days, most of the people get the vaccination against chickenpox; but still, it is very common in newborn babies and pregnant women. Sometimes, it attacks adults too. Normally, it takes almost two weeks for the symptoms to subside after getting the infection, but there are certain home remedies that can cure it quickly.

1. Baking Soda
Baking soda is one of the popular remedies to give relief from the itching when suffering from chicken pox. When you apply baking soda on the skin and when it dries out there, you are relieved of the irritation the rashes and blisters cause.

2. Prevent the Infection from Spreading
If your child or you have chickenpox, do not go back to school, work or day care until all blisters are crusted over. This generally takes about 10 days after the first appearance of your symptoms. Stay away from anyone who is not immune from chickenpox to prevent it from spreading.

3. Avoid Scratching
If you scratch, it can cause scarring, slow healing and increase the risk of infection. If your child can’t stop the scratching, you should trim their fingernails and put gloves on their hands, at night especially.

4. Essential Oils Bath
Thieves oil is a blend of five anti-infectious, anti-viral, anti-bacterial, and anti-septic essential oils. These five oils are cinnamon, clove, lemon, eucalyptus and rosemary oils. When combined with other useful essential oils and Epsom salt, this oil blend does wonders to cure chicken pox. You can use this for an oily Epsom salt bath.

5. Lilac (Neem)
Lilac or neem has great anti-viral properties. Take some neem leaves and crush them into a paste. Apply this paste on the blisters in order to get relief from the itchiness. It will also dry out the rashes.

6. Eat the Right Food
Particular foods should be added into and removed from meals for those have chickenpox to prevent undue stress on the digestive system and boost your immune system so as to speed up the recovery process.

7. Honey
Honey is the natural antibacterial component which can excellently cure irritation. It is said that the simple natural sugars contained in the honey along with its anti-bacterial properties create this soothing effect.

8. Marigold Flower
Marigold (Calendula) is a flower which is an effective anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory herb. It is great for reducing swelling and redness of skin. Its capacity to stimulate production of collagen relieves you of pain and also speeds up the healing process. Get it from any herbal store.

9. Green Peas
Green peas are not only a delicious vegetable but also a great remedy to get rid of itchiness associated with chicken pox. Water made from peas also suppress the urge to itch.

10. Carrot & Coriander Soup
Take 100 grams of carrots and chop them well. Also chop 60 grams of coriander leaves and boil it with chopped carrots in water for some time. Now, strain and cool it down. Drink this soup once in a day. This will effectively heal the chickenpox.

11. Brown Vinegar
 Add ½ cup of brown vinegar to a tub, filled with warm water. Soak in it in order to get rid of irritation and aid in a quick healing of chickenpox while also reducing the scars.

12. Make Herbal Tea
Herbal tea is a good way to boost immunity. As chicken pox virus is basically caught by people with weak immunity, it is always advisable to have some herbal tea to improve the defense mechanism of the body. Herbal tea is also recommended even if you have already got the disease. Here is a list of some herbs that you can use to make tea to cure your chicken pox.

13. Vitamin E Oil
Apply vitamin E oil on the chickenpox blisters in order to quickly heal them.

14. Aloe Vera
Apply fresh aloe vera gel on the rashes to get a soothing relief from chickenpox symptoms. Aloe vera is one of the best natural medicines for healing skin infections.

15. Try Epsom Salt Bath
Not an actual salt, but rather a mineral compound, Epsom salt contains sulfate and magnesium which can be very useful in reliving chickenpox itch, soothing inflammation and relieving pain.

16. Oatmeal Bath
Oatmeal has been used to prepare a bath for patients of chicken pox and it really soothes their skin by relieving them off the itchiness that they get from rashes and blisters.

17. Jasmine Flower
This is a Thai remedy for treating chicken pox. People in Thailand use jasmine flowers to make tea as well as for a bath to treat chicken pox. These flowers are easily available at any herbal medicine shops as well as herbal tea shops.

18. Ginger Bath
This is yet another Thai herbal remedy for chicken pox. This relieves you of the itching caused by the disease. Although you can always drink ginger tea by boiling ginger pieces in water, ginger bath is what will get you rid of itching rather instantly.

19. Get Vitamin D from Sunrays 
Some researchers from the University of London conducted studies on varicella-zoster virus which causes chickenpox. In their studies, they found a link between UV levels in the regions and the prevalence of chickenpox there. In tropical countries, there is much lesser incidence of chicken pox through out the year. On the other hand, temperate zones have high rates of chicken pox during winter and spring seasons when sun’s ultra violet radiation (UVR) is at its low in these regions. Not only does sun rays kill many viruses, it also provides with the vital vitamin D which boosts immunity. Vitamin D is also anti viral in nature.

20. Diet Remedies
Your body needs basic nutrients including vitamins and minerals as also enzymes that may boost its immunity. Not only that, these nutrients also cleanse toxic wastes from the cells to treat chicken pox. So do not take diet lightly and pay proper attention to it.

21. Take Medications
A majority of cases of chickenpox need little to no treatment beyond the home remedies for chickenpox. However, some medications can provide help.

22. Other Methods
Except the above methods, the following methods also can provide some relief: dab calamine lotion onto the blisters; eat a bland, soft diet if there are chickenpox sores in the mouth; try acetaminophen or ibuprofen for a mild fever.


18 Simple Home Remedies for Chickenpox


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