Are there Alternative Medications for Gastritis Treatment?

Gastritis is inflammation (irritation) of the stomach lining. This may be caused by many factors including infection, alcohol, particular medications and some allergic and immune conditions. Gastritis can be either acute (with severe attacks lasting a day or two) or chronic (with long-term appetite loss or nausea). In many cases, gastritis has no symptoms (asymptomatic).

Some forms, including chronic atrophic gastritis, have been associated with an increased risk of stomach cancer. Treatment options include avoiding exposure to known irritants and taking medication to reduce the amount of gastric juices.

While there are instances where medical treatment is necessary to treat gastritis, many people find they can manage the symptoms at home. People with gastritis should see a doctor if they experience:

  • a gastritis flare-up that lasts more than a week
  • vomiting blood
  • blood in the stool

However, outside of medication, the four main causes of gastritis can all be remedied to some extent by changing your diet. Gastritis is the weakening of the stomach lining, and can sometimes be cured by a lifestyle change. Symptoms for gastritis can range from none at all to abdominal pain, indigestion, nausea, and even anemia. A diet change for gastritis focuses on alleviating the common causes of gastritis, and can be an effective gastritis treatment.

Finally, some people also choose to take over-the-counter drugs, such as antacids, to control severe symptoms, while others are prescribed proton pump inhibitors or H2 blockers to help control levels of stomach acid. In the cases where chronic gastritis causes anemia, it’s common for vitamin B12 deficiency to be treated using intermittent injections.

Research shows that foods that can help manage gastritis symptoms include high-antioxidant foods (especially those with flavonoids, like berries), onions, garlic, squash, bell peppers, nuts, soaked legumes/beans, sprouted whole grains, sea vegetables, and grass-fed meat or pasture-raised poultry. Supplements like omega-3 fatty acids, probiotics and vitamin C can also be beneficial for gastritis sufferers.

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Anemia Supplements

Anemia is the most common blood disorder in the country. According to the Mayo Clinic, more than 3.4 million Americans suffer with some form of anemia, the symptoms of which often include fatigue, weakness, shortness of breath, pale skin, and cold or numb hands and feet. Headaches are another symptom, as are nails that break easily.

The goal anemia treatment is to increase the amount of oxygen that your blood can carry. This is done by raising the red blood cell count and/or hemoglobin level. Otherwise, doctors treat the underlying cause of the anemia.

Low levels of vitamins or iron in the body can cause some types of anemia. These low levels might be the result of a poor diet or certain diseases or conditions. To raise your vitamin or iron level, your doctor may ask you to change your diet or take vitamin or anemia supplements.

If you are indeed iron deficient, your doctor will probably prescribe iron supplements. Most people with mild or moderate iron deficiency anemia can correct the problem over a period of about three months, but if iron stores remain low, a few more months of supplementation may be recommended.

Strict vegetarians may need to take in higher levels of iron.

At high doses, iron is toxic. For adults and children ages 14 and up, the upper limit — the highest dose that can be taken safely — is 45 mg a day. Children under age 14 should not take more than 40 mg a day.

The American Academy of Pediatrics suggests that — starting at 4 months of age — full-term, breastfed infants should be supplemented with 1 mg/kg per day of oral iron. This should continue until iron-containing complementary foods, such as iron-fortified cereals, are introduced in the diet. Standard infant formula that contains 12 mg/L iron can fulfill the iron needs of an infant until age 1.

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Claustrophobia Treatment Tips

Claustrophobia is one of the most common phobias. It is a situational phobia triggered by an irrational and intense fear of tight or crowded spaces. It frequently results in a panic attack and can be triggered by things such as being in a crowded elevator, a small room without any windows, or driving on a congested highway.

Claustrophobia Symptoms: For some people, claustrophobia may disappear on its own. Others may need therapy to manage and cope with their symptoms. Symptoms of claustrophobia vary. However, some common symptoms include: sweating, increased heart rate, dizziness, hyperventilating, inability to breathe, headaches, and trembling.

Claustrophobia Treatment Tips: If you experience any of these symptoms, you should see a doctor. Don’t wait until your claustrophobia becomes too overwhelming because an early diagnosis can help you better manage your symptoms. Claustrophobia is most commonly treated by psychotherapy. Different types of counseling can help you overcome your fear and manage your triggers. Counter conditioning and exposure therapy (gradually exposing people to situations that trigger anxiety) can help people build a tolerance and learn coping mechanisms. Others can benefit from therapy or medication.

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Age-related Macular Degeneration

Age-related macular degeneration — also called macular degeneration, AMD or ARMD — is deterioration of the macula, which is the small central area of the retina of the eye that controls visual acuity.

The health of the macula determines our ability to read, recognize faces, drive, watch television, use a computer, and perform any other visual task that requires us to see fine detail.

Macular degeneration is the leading cause of vision loss among older Americans, and due to the aging of the U.S. population, the number of people affected by AMD is expected to increase significantly in the years ahead.

According to a recent study by researchers at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately 6.5 percent of Americans age 40 and older have some degree of macular degeneration. Other research suggests there were 9.1 million cases of early AMD in the U.S. in 2010 and this number is expected to increase to 17.8 million by the year 2050.

AMD is most common among the older white population, affecting more than 14 percent of white Americans age 80 and older. Among Americans age 50 and older, advanced macular degeneration affects 2.1 percent of this group overall, with whites being affected more frequently than blacks, non-white Hispanics and other ethnic groups (2.5 percent vs. 0.9 percent).

Progression to wet macular degeneration is the main complication of dry age-related macular degeneration. At any time, dry macular degeneration can progress to the more severe form of the disease called wet macular degeneration, which may cause rapid vision loss. There is no accurate way to predict who will eventually develop wet macular degeneration.

Other eye diseases such as cataracts, glaucoma, retinal detachment, or dry eyes are not complications of macular degeneration. Patients with macular degeneration can, however, develop these or other eye diseases and people with these conditions can also develop AMD concurrently.

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A Quick Review of OTC Cough Medicine

Is a hacking cough making you feel lousy? Don’t grab a random box of cough medicine off the pharmacy shelf. The role of cough medicine is to ease symptoms while your body heals.

As a glance at the drugstore shelves will show you, there are many, many brands of OTC cough medicines. But there are only three basic types:

  • Expectorants help thin mucus, making it easier to cough up. The ingredient guaifenesin is the only expectorant in the U.S., so look for it on the label if you need an expectorant.
  • Suppressants help cut the number of times you cough. The active ingredient listed is usually dextromethorphan (DM). Other cough suppressants include camphor, eucalyptus oil, and menthol.
  • Combination cough products have more than one active ingredient. They have both guaifenesin and dextromethorphan. Cough medicines may also contain ingredients to help coat and soothe the throat. Combination products may have medicines to ease other symptoms, that may include decongestants for stuffy nose, antihistamines for allergies or a runny nose, or painkillers. Choose a medicine that matches your symptoms.
  • Cough drops can also help relieve a cough and may ease a sore throat.

Many OTC cough medicines have multiple ingredients — expectorants and suppressants along with decongestants, antihistamines, or painkillers. Select products with only the medicines that treat your symptoms. If your symptom is only a cough, for instance, you don’t need a decongestant or painkiller.

If you need to treat multiple symptoms, check other medicines you take to see if they contain the same ingredients. Don’t take two medicines that have the same ingredients. If you have any questions, ask your pharmacist or doctor.

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The Best Home Remedies for Chronic Bronchitis

Bronchitis is a common respiratory disease caused by viruses, bacteria, irritants such as smoke, and other particles that aggravate the bronchial tubes. These tubes bring air from the nose and mouth to the lungs.

Home remedies are actually your best bet when it comes to treating chronic bronchitis. Research trials have shown that antibiotics are not effective for the treatment of chronic bronchitis. Despite evidence of ineffectiveness and clear guidelines in the medical world, the prescribing rate for chronic bronchitis has actually risen.

Best home remedies for chronic bronchitis

  • N-acetyl cysteine (NAC), a form of the amino acid cysteine, helps thin and loosen mucus. Take one 600-milligram dose three times daily, between meals, until the chronic bronchitis has cleared up.
  • Echinacea and astragalus are herbs that strengthen the immune system and help you fight off bacteria and viruses. Take 500 milligrams of either herb four times a day for acute bronchitis or twice daily for chronic bronchitis.
  • R-lipoic acid is a powerful antioxidant nutrient that is vital in the repair of inflamed airways. Like other antioxidants such as vitamins E and C, R-lipoic acid contributes to your health by counteracting the effects of harmful molecules called free radicals, which damage cells.
  • A medicinal formula called Arcozon has potent antibacterial and immune-stimulating properties. It contains four herbs that have been traditionally used by healers in the Amazon rainforest: uña de gato (cat’s claw), pau d’arco, suma, and jatoba. You can use it to prevent or treat bronchial infections. Take one teaspoon or four capsules four times daily for short-lived bronchitis or twice daily for chronic bronchitis.
  • Ginger. Some researchers have found evidence that ginger can have an anti-inflammatory effect against respiratory infection.
  • Garlic is said to have countless healing properties. Results of a 2016 study show that garlic effectively inhibited the growth of infectious bronchitis virus. This finding suggests garlic can be used as a natural remedy for chronic bronchitis.
  • Turmeric is a spice often used in East Indian foods. A 2011 study found turmeric provided more anti-inflammatory effects than ginger. Turmeric also increases antioxidant activity. That means it may help reduce irritation and boost your immunity.

A healthy lifestyle goes hand in hand with the prevention of illnesses. It can help you recover faster when you’re sick, too. A minor illness may even be your body’s way of telling you to slow down and take it easy.

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Carb Counting and Blocking

Low carb diets are popular. It is like everywhere you look you find a variation of these. The reason it is so popular is simple; it works. But what if you love your breads, pastas, and potatoes? Can you eat carbs and still lose fat? In this post we shall look at the benefits of natural carbs blockers and whether they can help you lose fat.

While cutting down on some carbohydrate foods such as white bread, white rice and other refined grains and sugars is recommended, cutting carbs drastically may not be a good idea. The reason is that you need carbohydrates for energy.

While the term “carb counting” appears to be more commonly used, we prefer the term “carb blocking”. This is not the same as carb cutting which, as mentioned, may not entirely be healthy. Carb blocking is about how your body manages (read utilizes) carbohydrates. You see, the digestive system breaks down carbohydrates into sugar, which enters your bloodstream. This causes the pancreas to produce the hormone insulin. This is the real enemy in your weight loss battles. Why?

Insulin prompts your body to absorb blood sugar for energy, or store it as glycogen in the liver and muscles, or as fat. However, due to poor dietary habits consisting of high levels of processed carbs, many of us have developed a certain level of what is known as insulin resistance. This means that body is not able to effectively use insulin.

Certain foods and compounds have been found to potentially influence the way the body manages carbs, which can influence body weight. These work in one of two ways:

  • Carbs blocking: Also known as starch blockers, carbohydrate blockers block amylase, a compound that helps digest carbs. This causes the carbs (and calories) to pass through the system undigested.
  • Improve insulin sensitivity: When your body is sensitive to insulin, only a small of the hormone amount needed to clear glucose from your system is released into your bloodstream. This is a good a thing as the presence of insulin can negatively affect fat burning.