My Personal Favorite, The Colonoskopy!

I was waist deep in the Gulf of Mexico, fishing for redfish when the first gnawing pain hit me in the stomach. To be more accurate it was my lower abdomen. Like all dedicated fishermen, I ignored the pain and kept right on throwing my silver spoon between the oyster beds off St. George Island off Florida’s Gulf Coast.

I’d had a slight burning sensation in my lower abdomen for a couple of days, but this time it got my attention, but not enough to quit fishing. Later that afternoon, after a shower, I curled up on the couch with some iced tea and thought about my predicament. I had an idea of the problem because I thought I’d had the same thing about 4 years earlier. It turned out to be diverticulitus, an inflammation of the large intestine. I also thought I knew what had caused my body to rebel this time; the same as the last. Beef Jerky!

I love the stuff! I make some of the best jerky on the planet and I’m stingy with it. I’ll share just about anything except jerky made with my own two hands! Over the last couple of days I had probably eaten two pounds of the dried meat and now I was paying the price. Probably my intestine had become infected by bits of meat that had not been thoroughly eradicated from my system. I took some Advil and went on about my business of having great time fishing!

The next week my doctor poked and muttered to himself and asked me how much beef jerky I had eaten this time, then scheduled me for a colonoscopy. His explanation as to why he was doing this was because I had never had one and that he got a cut of the surgeon’s fee. That was the best explanation I had heard, so I said why not? He also gave me some antibiotics which eventually eliminated the pain.

About one in four men over the age 50 gets colon cancer. Those are high enough odds to make such a test as this necessary and my friends all said it was a piece of cake. They didn’t tell me that the preparation part of the test was worse than the exam itself. It was horrible!

The morning before the actual test, forget about ham and eggs for breakfast. Juice or beef or chicken broth, is the menu for the day. Apple juice was the recommended juice! Guess what an abundance of apple juice will do for you? That’s right! Diarrhea! There’s only so much apple juice you can drink before you burst, so I alternated between iced tea and apple juice all day with a healthy spoonful of beef bouillon dissolved in a cup of boiling water. Delicious as it sounds, I wished I could have had a steak!

At 4:00 that afternoon, after a day of consuming liquids and going to the bathroom an astonishing amount of times, the serious stuff began. I took 4 pills and waited two hours before drinking a mixture concocted by the devil himself. It tasted awful and I still have no idea what those 4 pills were for!

This part of the test was supposed to take care of what the apple juice and other liquids missed. I was furnished a kit containing a gallon jug with a suspicious looking powder in the bottom. There were 5 packets of flavoring in the kit and I could choose between Lemon-Lime, Mountain Berry, Cola, Pineapple and Pina’ Colada! I chose Pineapple. Bad Choice! One of these mixed with the powder and then dissolved in a gallon of water was supposed to make the brew taste better. It didn’t! I had to drink at least a half gallon of the liquid over an hour’s time. The last half gallon in the jug was to be used if I threw up the first half of the bottle. The results weren’t pretty but it served its purpose!

The next morning, stomach empty, I was wheeled into a small room with monitors chirping, nurses fiddling with IV tubes and a smiling doctor asking me if I’d had this done before. Not likely, or I wouldn’t be here this time, I told him. He just laughed and said that the worst was over. It was! Those were last words I heard before I was awakened from the best sleep I had had in years. Except for the sting of the IV needle, I knew nothing of the test.

Thankfully, the test was negative in all aspects and I suggest that all men have the exam. It’s not at all like the tests of previous years and it’s very important if you want to catch colon cancer in its early stages. I’ll do it next year, but the next time I’ll choose Mountain Berry mix.

Texas Agricultural Workers May Be At A Higher Risk For Brain Cancer

Brain cancer risks increase with heavy exposure to pesticides, recent reports say. That’s troubling news for states with large agricultural industries, like Texas, which not only employs millions of legal and illegal workers every year, but also has over 25% of its population going without health insurance.

French researcher, Dr. Isabelle Baldi, and colleagues from the University of Bordeaux compared 221 adult brain cancer patients with 442 similarly-profiled members of the general population without cancer. The study found that “agricultural workers with the highest level of exposure to pesticides (are) twice as likely to be diagnosed with brain cancer as those with no occupational pesticide exposure.”

Baldi’s study focused on France’s famous Bordeaux region, which has one of the highest brain cancer rates in the world. Though she could not release specifics on which pesticides were used, the region, with its substantial vineyards, uses large quantities of fungicides.

According to an article released in the journal Occupational and Environmental Medicine, gliomas, a type of tumor associated with brain cancer, are three times as likely to occur in exposed workers as those with no pesticide work exposure.

The study was also the first to produce statistically relevant data suggesting that those who treated their houseplants with pesticides were at a higher risk for brain cancer as well. Again, the cancer risk was approximately double, as compared with those who never used pesticides. Baldi warned that further research was needed to confirm this link, as no controls were in place for pesticide levels and reporting biases.

Previous research from other scholars found that pesticide exposure among farmers was linked with adverse effects on the brain, including Parkinson’s disease.

All this only fuels the debate over organic, versus conventionally-grown foods, which is as hot a topic in Texas as anywhere else in the country. Recent reports that the average conventional crop is 13% lower in nutrient content than the same crop produced a few decades ago, also seems to add to the stack of evidence in favor of organic systems.

No one in Texas is immune to the risks these products pose. The state already experiences 13 fatal injuries for every 100,000 agricultural workers, which is twice the rate of all workers in Texas. Chronic diseases and cancer, however, may take years to develop. Considering that agricultural pesticide use has skyrocketed over the last several decades, the prevalence of brain cancer — and that of other brain disorders linked with these pesticides — may skyrocket in years to come. Such a surge has the potential to cripple an already perilously strained state healthcare system, especially when one-quarter of all residents are uninsured. And, if Baldi’s preliminary findings on the cancer risk associated with household pesticide use proves correct, then everyone, including residents of cities like Dallas, Houston, and Austin, is in danger.

Just the ripple effect in the healthcare system alone may be cause for alarm. If an already strained system administers the necessary, expensive, and time-consuming treatments for uninsured patients with brain cancer, along with treating the rest of the state — with its usual high rates of chronic diseases, such as diabetes, hypertension, and other cancers — then those in need of care throughout the state will feel the effects of limited resources. There are only so many doctors, nurses, and other healthcare professionals to go around; there’s only so much public funding. Longer waiting periods alone for those with such serious diseases could prove deadly. And, unfortunately, this year has been a pivotal one for proving the ineffectiveness of our public system; the Commonwealth Fund confirmed only last month that lack of health insurance is linked with poorer quality of care in the United States.

So what do we do? Limit unnecessary pesticide use, first of all, whether you’re a farmer, agricultural worker, or a green-thumbed city dweller. Look for alternatives, which are easily found in natural gardening and health food stores. Write pesticide companies and your Congressional representatives; state your concerns and let them know that serous investigations at this point are necessary. Information is the greatest chance we have of protecting ourselves and our children. Though Baldi’s study was performed in France, many of the same, or similar, pesticides are used in several countries, including our own. If we figure out and cut off the dangers now, we may literally be able to save thousands, or even millions, of lives.

Being concerned about environmental toxins is just one part of taking care of your health. How you take care of yourself will certainly affect you as you age, and eventually your wallet, as well.

Caring for Your Gold Jewelry: Four "Golden" Rules

There are four simple rules to keeping your gold jewelry looking like new. Gold is very durable but its luster can fade with time. However, with proper care, your gold will list for a lifetime. Take a look at these four golden rules and your jewelry will be shining for a long time to come.

1. Don’t wear your golden jewelry 24/7

The most effective way to preserve gold jewelry is to limit its exposure to the daily elements. For example, many personal care products can be harmful to gold jewelry. These include lotion, make-up, perfume, shaving cream, and hairspray. These products can form a dull film that covers the gold and it is hard to remove. So, to prevent this remove your gold jewelry prior to grooming.

2. Always avoid chlorine when wearing your jewelry

Never clean your gold jewelry with chlorine bleach. Bleach ruins gold by oxidizing the metal and turning it black. To be on the safe side, you should remove gold jewelry before doing any household chores. Many common household cleaners have bleach and other chemicals that may adversely affect gold jewelry. In addition, don’t swim or go in a hot tub wearing gold because prolonged exposure to chlorine in a swimming pool can turn it black.

3. Clean gold jewelry properly

Light tarnish on gold can be removed by using soapy water and a soft bristle brush. A soft toothbrush and some dish washing liquid also work well. Here is how to do it: Dip the toothbrush in the water and get the bristles into all of the crevices. Then rinse the piece in warm water until the water runs clear. After gentle scrubbing, buff the piece dry with a soft, lint-free cloth to make it shine. You can also use a specially treated cloth or other cleaning jewelry cleaning products.

If your gold jewelry does not contain colored gemstones you can clean it with an ultrasonic cleaning machine. Finally, if you have a problem with heavy tarnish, please consult a jeweler.

4. Store gold jewelry properly

Dry your gold jewelry before putting it away for storage. Moisture can weaken springs and clasps, increasing likelihood of damage. It is also important to provide enough storage space. Keep diamond jewelry separate because it can easily scratch gold. Most jewelry boxes have separate compartments to keep all your jewelry separate however, if you don’t have a jewelry box with separators, wrap each piece in tissue paper and keep the items in small bags or pouches.

That’s it, follow these four tips and you will enjoy your gold jewelry throughout your life.

Benefits of Alternative Cancer Treatments For Stomach Cancer

Stomach cancer, also called gastric cancer, occurs in the wall and lining of the stomach. According to the American Cancer Society, about 21,500 new cases of stomach cancer were reported in 2008. Stomach cancer was once a leading cause of cancer deaths, but has recently become less common.

There is no specific reason for the decline in the number of new cases; however, doctors believe it may be linked to refrigeration use for storage of food. Before refrigeration, people preserved food by smoking, salting, or pickling. Large amounts of nitrates and nitrites are found in these types of preserved foods, and these nitrates and nitrites can be converted into cancer-causing compounds in the stomach. Humans infected with the bacteria known as Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) are at higher risk for developing stomach cancer as well. H. pylori lives in the stomach’s mucous layer and has only recently been linked to stomach cancer. Because of this, doctors are still studying the ways the bacteria are transmitted to humans as well as the reasons for its association with stomach cancer.

The development of stomach cancer tends to be slow, occurring over many years. Many early-stage symptoms go unnoticed and undetected. However, when the cancer is advanced, there are several signs and symptoms including:

– weakness and fatigue
– unintended weight loss
– lack of appetite
– general discomfort in the abdomen
– abdominal discomfort, especially after eating
– feeling full after meals, even when eating is normal
– nausea
– vomiting, with or without blood

There are different types of stomach cancer.

Adenocarcinomas account for 95 percent of all stomach cancers. It is found in the stomach’s innermost lining. Lymphoma is an aggressive stomach cancer found on the immune system tissues in the stomach wall. Carcinoid tumors account for a small percentage of stomach cancer and originate in the hormone-producing cells of the stomach. Gastrointestinal stromal tumors, also called GISTs, are rare tumors that can develop in other places besides the stomach; however, the most common location for GISTs is indeed the stomach.

The doctors at New Hope Medical Center will work to create an alternative cancer treatment for patients with stomach cancer. More than 50 years of experience has helped the team at New Hope develop the New Hope Treatment Method, an alternative cancer treatment focused on individualized care. A specialized regimen allows for optimum patient care. The staff at the New Hope alternative cancer treatment center carefully evaluates a patient before an alternative cancer treatment is suggested. Several alternative cancer treatment options are included in the overall plan, including but not limited to changes in diet and nutrition, immune system enhancement, physical therapy, homeopathic medicines, acupuncture, ozone therapy, and stress management.

The entire staff at the New Hope Medical Center works hard to help cancer patients who are looking for alternative cancer treatments that are effective and non-invasive. The knowledgeable and friendly staff provide a warm environment for cancer patients. The New Hope Medical Center doctors, nurses, oncologists, and nutritionists strive to meet individual alternative cancer treatment needs.

3 Potential Small Cell Lung Cancer Symptoms

There are two main types of lung cancer; small cell lung cancer (SCLC) and non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Of these two types, SCLC represents around 20%. It is often nicknamed oat cell carcinoma due to the oat like appearance of the small cells of the lungs. SCLC develops when these small cells start to grow in a rapid and uncontrollable way and eventually become malignant (cancerous). Since this cancer affects the lungs this is the area where most of the symptoms manifest. In this article I will be discussing three of the most common small cell lung cancer symptoms.

1) A PERSISTENT COUGH:- If you notice you have a cough that does not seem to go away it could be a sign of SCLC. A lot of coughs will have no other symptoms than a dry, hoarse, itchy feeling in the throat. However, some coughs result in phlegm and blood coming up. Other coughs can even cause pain. You should inform your doctor if you notice any type of persistent cough and if any phlegm or blood comes up you should inform them right away. The cough may be down to something much less serious but it may also be an early warning sign of SCLC. Your doctor will be able to perform a number of tests and give you a professional diagnosis.

2) BREATHLESSNESS:- Feeling breathless for no apparent reason is another potential small cell lung cancer symptom. This can often lead to you feeling tired and lacking in energy whilst performing every day tasks such as walking down the street. Regardless of whether the breathlessness comes on gradually or suddenly it should be treated with suspicion. If you notice yourself becoming short of breath for no logical reason go see your doctor and explain your concerns. They will then be able to identify the cause of the breathlessness and determine if it is linked to SCLC.

3) CHEST PAIN:- Chest pain is a very serious symptom which is linked with a number of conditions including SCLC. The chest pain may be caused by coughing or deep breathing. However, you may also experience constant or spontaneous chest pain. Any type of chest pain should be treated with extreme caution and you should go see your doctor right away. They will then be able to perform a number of tests to identify the cause.

Many of the symptoms of small cell lung cancer are linked to the chest. Although the above symptoms are not exclusive to SCLC, they do usually act as early warning signs. If you notice any of the symptoms discussed above you should inform your doctor right away. They will be able to investigate any suspicious coughs or spontaneous chest pains and determine if they are linked to SCLC. This type of cancer is much more treatable in the early stages so it makes sense to act on any potential symptoms early and go see your doctor.

Whilst every intention has been made to make this article accurate and informative, it is intended for general information only. Small cell lung cancer is a very serious, life threatening condition and you should discuss any concerns, treatments or lifestyle changes fully with your doctor.

Preventive Oral Care Tips

There are two different types of measures that you can take to take care of your teeth – preventive and cosmetic. While all doctors would suggest a preventive measure as the best option it isn’t always possible. Routine care from the beginning comes under the definition of preventive measures while consulting a dentist for a surgery of teeth and gums is a cosmetic measure.

So what do you do if you need a cosmetic care for your teeth?

First, maybe it isn’t late for preventive measure after all! Your dentist would be able to tell you better. Family dentistry fishers works towards educating patients on all the aspects and best practices in preventive oral care. The specialist dentist at family dentistry empathizes on the balanced diet. Eating food items which contain lots of sugar exposes the gums and teeth to various disease, it increase the chances of plaque in teeth and after some time, it helps the bacteria to accumulate inside the mouth. Sugar acts as a food for bacterial growth. The bacteria initiate the process of creating cavities and decay of tooth. Cake, pastries, cookies, chocolates and muffins do their best to harm the tooth enamel.

Know what you eat!

It is necessary to choose food items with utmost care. Food that increases the flow of saliva is considered best for teeth and gums as saliva dissolve the food particles which stick to teeth. Prefer a lot of liquid diet, particularly water, as it absorbs the excess of sugar level and neutralize the plaque acids. Carbonated drinks should be avoided as much as possible. Soft drinks and other carbonized liquids cause the decay of tooth by providing sugar to the mouth bacteria. A well balanced diet, containing appropriate sugar and salt helps the teeth to grow strong and prevent the oral disease. It also provides the minerals and vitamins which help in overall growth of body. Family dentistry fishers also emphasizes on reducing the consumption of alcohol and leaving smoking. Both alcohol as well as cigarette causes bad breath. They also increase the chances of oral cancer.

Maintain your hygiene

No dentist can stress this enough. Maintaining a routine oral hygiene along with nutritious food gives double benefit to teeth. Brushing teeth at least twice a day (once in the morning and once at night) and using an antibacterial mouthwash after brushing takes away the sticky food particles and prevents the formation of cavities and plaque in mouth.

A Few Complications From Hemorrhoids

In most cases of hemorrhoids, conservative home treatment is all that is needed to resolve the problem. However, some individuals do experience repeated bouts of them, and in some cases, complications can result. Generally, in cases where the typical hemorrhoid symptoms of minor itching and burning occur, complications are rare.

Thrombosed hemorrhoids, strangulated hemorrhoids, and very rare secondary conditions such as anemia can be a few complications of hemorrhoids you would encounter, however.

Thrombosed hemorrhoids form when external hemorrhoids develop a blood clot. This can be very painful and demand prompt medical treatment. Additional stress on an ordinary external hemorrhoid due to constipation or a coughing attack can cause a hemorrhoid to develop a blood clot. When this happens, the pain can be very severe, and it is best to see a doctor right away. If it isn’t taken care of, infection and even gangrene can set in, though this is fortunately quite rare. The best way to prevent the complication of a thrombosed hemorrhoid is by treating them as soon as you know about them.

Not all thrombosed hemorrhoids result in severe pain, however. This particular hemorrhoid looks like a red, blue, or flesh colored lump. In some cases, they may resolve themselves after about a week. Anyone who has a suspected thrombosed hemorrhoid that is not causing pain and does not appear to be worsening may wait for a week to see if it resolves itself before seeking medical treatment. Thrombosed hemorrhoids that are painful or that do not appear to be resolving on their own should receive medical treatment.

Removal of thrombosed hemorrhoids is easier if it is done before there are any complications. Furthermore, recovery is faster and less painful, so there is every reason for someone who suspects they have a one – particularly if they are in pain – to see a doctor as soon as possible.

A complication from internal hemorrhoids is what is known as a strangulated hemorrhoid. When an internal hemorrhoid prolapses through the anus and swells, the muscles that control the opening and closing of the anal opening can cut of the blood supply to the hemorrhoid, which can cause hemorrhoidal tissues to die. The result is severe pain and the possibility of bleeding and pus formation. Surgery is required to prevent further complications such as infection.

If bleeding from hemorrhoids is chronic, even at a low level, it can result in anemia. Anemia is a condition where there are not enough healthy red blood cells to carry oxygen to cells, and it results in weakness and tiredness. If it’s bad enough, anemia can be life threatening.

Some people may believe that hemorrhoids, left untreated, develop into cancer, but this is not true. The problem is, both hemorrhoids and cancer can cause bleeding. If a person experiences rectal bleeding and is older than 50, doctors consider it important to do tests to rule out dangerous causes such as cancer. If the problem turns out to be hemorrhoids, then treatment proceeds as it would in any other age patient.

How Does Vitamin A Benefit Your Health?

Retinol, or popularly called as Vitamin A, is a fat soluble vitamin and is perhaps one of the most vital Vitamin that a human being should incorporate in his or her daily diet. The said vitamin is responsible in maintaining the health of your eyes for you to see clearly because it aides your eyes in adjusting from light variations in different environments. It could also help you in maintaining the radiance and glow of your skin because it has certain properties that could keep the skin membranes moist.

Actually finding good sources of vitamin A is not a major problem at all for it can be found in most animal and plant-based foods. Another advantage of getting enough vitamin A is the fact that it is a natural antioxidant that prevents you from acquiring dreadful diseases especially the most feared cancer. This is because; vitamin A has antioxidant properties that neutralize free radicals that are very detrimental to the tissues and may even cause cellular damage.

For those individuals who could not get enough vitamin A from their diet, they ought to take supplements to suffice their need for the said vitamin. Before anything else, if you are planning to take vitamin supplements you should seek consultation first with your physician for he knows exactly how much you will need. It is not healthy to self medicate because most of the time it could lead to toxicity due to excess dosage. Always put in mind that human beings only need enough amount of vitamin A and eating natural foods rich in with the said vitamin could already suffice your needs. On average, it is recommended for women to get at least 8000 IU of vitamin A and 10000 IU for men daily.

Other health benefit that vitamin A could offer us is the following:

1. It is a good anti-cancer agent for it has abundant anti-oxidants that give you certain degree of protection from cancer and other diseases.

2. It prevents you from having night blindness because it enhances your vision.

3. Vitamin A is also good for people who have glaucoma and measles.

4. The said vitamin is also beneficial in maintaining effective respiration as well as to prevent respiratory problems among children.

5. Vitamin A can protect you from infections may it be viral, bacterial or parasitic.

6. It also helps your bones to become stronger.

7. As what has been mentioned earlier, the said vitamin is good for your skin hence, it could lessen the like hood for you to develop acne and psoriasis.

Indeed there is no need to reiterate how important vitamin A is into our lives and health. For us to get enough of it, natural sources would be the best choice to take because it will never fail you and won’t give you problems like toxicity.

You can find vitamin A at your local or internet vitamin store in softgel forms. Always choose name brands like Kal brand to ensure quality or the vitamin supplement you buy for better health.

Information on Natural Health Supplements- Top 3 Listed Out Here

Health supplements can provide several benefits. You can obtain maximum health benefits if you know about the top health supplements that can boost your system, provide nutritional benefits and lower blood pressure and cholesterol naturally. Get all the facts so that you can find answers to all your queries about improving your own health naturally through vitamin and diet supplements. Here we will discuss about L-Theanine (anxiety and stress relief), Milk Thistle (gallbladder and liver treatment), Pycnogenol (anti-aging).

L-Theanine

L-Theanine is a popular supplement which includes some amazing and unique properties. Green tea is considered to have the largest concentration of the L-Theanine. This helps improve mood and reduce the stress. Theanine has been indicated as a safe and effectivesupplement by the Japanese in the year 1964. It is widely popular as a mind relaxant including several attractive properties. This is found to improve the dopamine in the humans. Dopamine is a type of naturally occurring chemical present in the brain that is released during the pleasant activities.

Research even indicates that L-Theanine includes other advantages. It even plays a major role in minimizing the cholesterol level and helps improve the efficacy of the cancer treatments by means of decreasing the total amount of the cancer drug in healthy cells while focusing drug on the cancerous cells.

Milk Thistle

It is reported that Milk Thistle has been in use for more than 2000 years or so. It is more common for treatment of the gallbladder disorders and liver. Silymarin which is called a flavonoid complex is extracted from milk thistle seeds and is believed to have been a biologically active component. The products of Milk Thistle are quite popular in the United States and in Europe for different kinds of liver disease.

Milk Thistle supplements can be effective for the chronic hepatitis. But more studies are required for examining the benefits and effectiveness of the supplements in such conditions. Some of the preliminary studies even suggest the use of supplements for people suffering from cirrhosis. It can even improve the liver function. In this respect as well, more studies needs to be conducted as cirrhosis and milk thistle are shown to be have been designed poorly. In all over Europe, the Milk Thistle has been reported administered to patients with liver problems primarily.

Pycnogenol

Pycnogenol is a natural health supplement which is derived from pine bark of trees known as the Pinus Pinaster. The active ingredients found in the products are also extracted from various other sources like grape seed, peanut skin and even witch hazel bark.

Pycogenol is also used for treatment of allergies, circulation problems, asthma, high blood pressure, osteoarthritis, pain, soreness in muscles, diabetes, deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). This can be used for preventing disorder of the blood vessels and heart, including other heart ailments, stroke and varicose veins. It is also used for slowing down the process of aging and maintaining healthy skin, improving the athletic endurance and improving the male fertility. Some skin creams in the market today also contain pycnogenal as the anti-aging products.