1. Has the FDA studied Tattoo Inks?

The FDA has limited information about tattoo inks. However, the FDA is examining tattoo inks and pigments to see if they contain heavy metals, contaminants, degradants, toxic chemicals like coating agents, microbicides and pH stabilizers, and other substances that may not be tolerable in the human body. For example, some reports claim tattoo ink has pigments that can be found in car paint and printer toner.

 2. Should I be concerned about a tattoo from a non-sterile needle or the actual ink?

Actually you should be concerned about both of them. It’s no surprised that people can get infections from non-sterile needles, but some people get infections from the ink itself because of contamination from invading mold and bacteria when the ink was made or while the ink was in the tattoo shop. When the ink itself is the culprit, it’s often due to using non-sterile water to dilute the ink (but it’s sometimes due to other reasons).

You can’t tell if ink is safe just by smelling it or looking at it. If the ink was improperly made from the manufacturer, it can be sealed or wrapped up and still be contaminated. So, you can’t just rely on a product label claiming it’s sterile when the ink could have gotten contaminated at any point in the making of it.

 3. What reactions are common (and not so common) after getting a tattoo?

Some people have a fever after getting a tattoo, and some people may get some type of rash that looks like red patches or bumps. If you have anything more serious than that, you may have to get an antibiotic treatment for the infection, or it may require hospitalization or surgery.  A more serious infection will entail shaking, chills, sweats and a high fever. Your doctor will determine if your infection is serious enough to require more extensive medical attention.

4. How should I handle getting a reaction or infection from my tattoo?

As stated in the answer to question three, it is recommended you contact your doctor (or another health care provider) to determine the severity of your reaction.

Also, make sure you let the tattoo artist know about your reaction to the ink. That way, the tattoo artist can remove the contaminated ink and prevent using it again. Also, you may be able to get detailed information about the ink that may shed light on how to treat the reaction to it.

5.  Is it safe to use those do-it-yourself tattoo inks and kits?

Unless you are a licensed tattoo artist, you might not have the right training to apply your own tattoo, which may leave you open to a high risk of contamination and infections. Also, there have been a lot of reports of allergic reactions to the inks and kits commonly found online.

6. Are there any long-term effects of having a tattoo?

The FDA and many other organizations are doing continuing research on the effects of tattoo art. However, many unanswered questions about tattoos are still not being addressed with the ongoing research. For example, most research going on today does not consider the long-term effects of the ingredients (including the contaminants) found in tattoo ink.

Another issue when considering the effect of tattoo pigments concerns what happens when the tattoo is removed via laser treatment. To date, research has shown that there is some scaring that occurs after tattoo removal, but other effects are yet to be verified.

7. What’s the bottom line?

Always consider the previously stated information before getting a tattoo. It does not matter about how advanced technology is because it still hurts and causes scarring to get a tattoo removed should you change your mind about keeping it.

Salt in Your Diet

February 11, 2017

Are you conscious about the amount of salt (aka sodium chloride) you eat? Are you certain the amount of salt you eat is appropriate for your body?

You may be surprised to find out you consume more salt than you think.

You may not use salt at all, and you still may be consuming too much of it if you eat a lot of prepared and processed foods. As a matter of fact, the sodium in most people’s diets in the United States comes from processed and prepared foods found in restaurants and grocery stores.

Now, the U. S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is trying to restrict the amount of sodium added to foods. A draft guidance for industry has been released by the FDA with the intent to have industries decrease the amount of sodium added to prepared and processed foods. The restriction concerns the amount of salt added to your foods before by the restaurants and manufacturers before you even get a chance to season them yourself.

The objective of the FDA is to have people decrease their daily salt intake to 2,300 milligrams (mg) a day, which is the equivalent to a teaspoon of salt. Right now, Americans consume about 50% more than what’s recommended for a daily allowance.

The Problem with Excess Sodium Consumption

The terms salt and sodium may be used as synonyms, but they are not identical substances. Salt is the crystal-like substance you sprinkle over your food and is 40% sodium and 60% chloride. Sodium is a mineral found in salt, but salt is the primary form that you consume sodium. Almost 95% of the sodium consumed–whether added by you or added by the manufacturer comes in salt form.

The body needs sodium to assist in doing its daily functions, and sodium can be found naturally in a lot of foods (including milk, beets and celery). Regardless of which form it’s in, sodium is also used to improve flavor, thicken foods and preserve foods.

The downside of sodium is the potential for it to cause high blood pressure, which is a precursor to heart disease and stroke. Therefore, a lot of deaths and sickness can be eliminated just by decreasing sodium intake.  

What Foods Are Typically High in Sodium?

Prepared and processed foods like soups, cheese, pizza, pasta dishes, snacks, sandwiches and salad dressings are rich in sodium.

You can’t assume a food has little sodium just because you can’t hardly taste any salt in it. That’s because most foods high in sodium won’t taste salty like pickles do. For example, pastries and sweet cereals are high in sodium but don’t taste salty. Also, some foods are low in sodium but may be consumed in quantities that make them a risky source of sodium (like a slice of bread).

Aren’t they the equivalent of an online ‘big group hug’?  All touchy, feely?  Full of love, acceptance and moral support?

They can be, but online hair loss forums are also one of the best places on the net to get open and honest advice about what’s worked for real people … and what hasn’t.

There are a number of factors to keep in mind when browsing, joining or contributing to a discussion forum. I’ve filtered over 50 hair loss related forums and discussion groups using certain criteria to arrive at a best of list.

The Top 3 Best Hair Loss Forums

#1 Hair Loss Forumforum.besthairlosspills.com

Hair Loss Forum is the online community of the www.besthairlosspills.com site.  Whilst its focus is on hair loss treatment pills, it does provide good coverage of other hair loss issues and causes. A good reference for those trying to navigate the pros and cons of the numerous hair loss treatment pills and supplements available.

#2 ForHair Forumforum.forhair.com

A focus on surgical hair restoration, but includes some interesting discussion on other treatment options.

#3 Hair Sitehairsite.com/hair-loss/default-view-board.html

A particularly good resource for educating yourself on both the causes and variety of solutions for hair loss.

Whether you’re training for a marathon or chasing a toddler around the house, there are plenty of reasons to want more stamina.

Endurance gives you the ability to power through physical activities at your peak level. Athletes build up stamina, or endurance, over time through a healthy lifestyle, a regular exercise or training routine and a balanced diet, but there may be times when you need to build up your stamina even more in just a few days. Whether it’s in preparation for a sporting event or other physically demanding activity, there are some additional things you can focus on to achieve this.

To build muscle endurance, limit your recovery time between sets to 30 to 90 seconds. Want to kick things up a notch? Take the recovery time — and the weight — down a notch. Less resistance, more repetitions and resting for 30 seconds or less between exercises is optimal for building stamina, a 2006 article in the Journal of Strength Conditioning and Research concluded. In other words, embrace those circuit workouts!

More info: How to Increase Muscle Endurance?

Memory Loss Prevention

January 19, 2017

It is normal for it to become more difficult to recall certain types of information (like people’s names) as people age.

Mild cognitive impairment is memory loss that goes beyond the normal expectancy for a person’s age, but a person still can do daily functions while having this condition.

Dementia is a more serious type of memory loss that is characterized by a progression of memory impairment, which eventually hinders other parts of one’s thinking abilities. Alzheimer’s disease (a condition in which brain abnormalities are formed by a rapid brain cell loss) is a primary cause of dementia even though other conditions can cause it.

Can We Prevent Memory Loss?

There are several ongoing clinical studies aimed at discovering intervention strategies for memory loss. Current research data indicates that shifting progestin and estrogen levels caused the risk of dementia in women older than 65 to increase. To date, claims that ginkgo biloba prevents memory loss are unsupported by concrete evidence.

However, there are some strategies you can try to help reduce the potential for memory loss:

  • Get your blood pressure and cholesterol under control. Research has proven that prolonged high cholesterol and high blood pressure increases the risk for vascular conditions (stroke and heart disease) that may lead to the onset of Alzheimer’s disease or the development of vascular dementia (also known as multi-infarct dementia.
  • Don’t smoke or abuse alcohol.
  • Exercise regularly to keep your blood flowing properly to the brain, which will decrease your chances of dementia.
  • Maintain healthy eating habits. A diet of less saturated fats and more leaf green vegetables is just what the doctor ordered for decreasing memory loss.  Beneficial fats like a omega-3 fatty acids found in fish like salmon and tuna are also great for brain health.
  • Keep an active social life, which will help you relieve stress.

Researcher claim people need to stay mentally active via writing, reading, learning new things, playing games, and gardening stimulates brain cells and the connections between them for better cognitive function and less risk for dementia.

Migraine headache is one of the most common problems seen in the emergency department and in the doctor’s office. It is a type of headache that appears to originate in the blood vessels of the head.

Migraine headache typically lasts from 4-72 hours or longer without headache treatment and vary in frequency from one per week to one per year. Migraine headache affects about 15% of the population. Three times as many women as men have migraine headache. Over 80% of people with migraine headache have other members in the family who have migraines.

Different types of migraine headache are:

  • Common migraine headache accounts for 80% of migraines. There is “aura” before a common migraine. An aura is a symptom that appears before the headache. Most often an aura is a visual disturbance (seeing outlines of lights or jagged light images).
  • Classic migraine headache presents with an aura and is usually much more severe than common migraine. Headache treatment may be required in this case.
  • Status migrainous headache is a persistent migraine that does not go away without headache treatment

A staggering range of potential migraine headache treatment exists. Depending on the severity of your symptoms, you may be advised to take over-the-counter analgesics, prescription headache treatment medications designed to quickly relieve symptoms, or even long-term headache treatment medication to prevent headaches from developing

Source: http://www.yourwebdoc.com/headache.php

Many people in the United States suffer from Alzheimer’s disease.

Alzheimer’s disease is the sixth leading cause of death in the US and has become the primary cause of dementia in people age 60 and over. Currently, over 5 million people in the United States have this condition, which gradually destroys memory and other cognitive abilities. The effects of this condition have proven to be irreversible as it gradually takes away a person’s ability to do daily cognitive functions.

Scientists have aggressively attempted to discover intervention strategies and treatment techniques for Alzheimer’s, but the results have been few.  Over the past 20 years, the FDA has approved five medications for Alzheimer’s, and one of these was just discovered as recently as 2003.  Drugs only provide so much benefit, so there must be more done to treat this disease.

Studies have shown that it takes several years for the brain abnormalities develop that characterize Alzheimer’s.  In the past, the focus of study has been done after the symptoms were undeniable, but that is many years after the brain changes have already taken place. Researchers propose that the best treatment for the disease must occur during the early stages of the disease: either at the earliest onset of obvious Alzheimer’s symptoms or earlier than that.

That’s why medications for the disease have shifted the focus on treating the condition before the more serious stages of dementia have occurred. In 2013, the FDA approved of a draft guidance to assist companies that desire to do clinical studies targeting intervention strategies aimed at treating the condition before the onset of dementia, a stage in the disease that may prove to be more treatable.

Dr. Eric Bastings, Deputy Director of the Division of Neurology Products for the FDA claims that the best window of opportunity for aggressively treating the disease must occur before people start experiencing the more obvious symptoms.

The 2013 FDA draft guidance looks promising as a tool to assist researchers in creating clinical trials for early stage Alzheimer’s therapies. The guidance is designed to promote dialog between new drug sponsors, the FDA, the academic/research community and the public.

Neurologists in the Division of Neurology Products for the FDA agree that the earlier the diagnosis in patients during the earlier stages of brain changes, the better the success of the clinical studies. Therefore, the FDA’s intention is to discover efficient and safe early intervention methods to prevent extensive brain damage.

The FDA’s draft guidance hopes to influence clinical trials at the earliest stages of Alzheimer’s as possible—even if no obvious symptoms are present.