All Entries For sickness

9 Home Remedies You Should Never Try


There's no denying the secret curing powers found in certain everyday items. Salt water, for instance, can take the sting out of a sore throat. And an oatmeal bath can ease eczema. So how about soothing a burn with butter? Not so fast. That and other common home remedies aren't just ineffectual; they can actually exacerbate the issue. So before you go DIY on treating bad breath, colds or cuts, check out these nine tactics to avoid. 
Posted 11/11/2013  6:00:00 AM By: SparkPeople Guest Blogger : 8 comments   20,785 views
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5 Ways to Stay Healthy This Winter


Your winter woes answered, with tips on how to treat--and weather--cold symptoms, body changes, injuries and more.

Q. I've had a cold for what seems like weeks. Should I see a doctor?

A. Yes. The typical cold lasts just seven to nine days, with people usually feeling the worst on days two to four, says Priya Wagle, M.D., an ear, nose and throat specialist in private practice in Linwood, New Jersey. "If you experience symptoms for a longer period of time, check with your doctor to be sure you don't have something more serious, like a sinus infection. A cold is a virus, so antibiotics won't help, but sinusitis can be bacterial and is treated with a prescription." 
Posted 11/5/2013  6:00:00 AM By: SparkPeople Guest Blogger : 5 comments   9,647 views
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You Asked: ''Is It Okay to Exercise When You Have a Cold?''


Great question! When you are sick, you need to pay careful attention to what your body is telling you. If the cold is primarily in your head, it's okay to exercise, just at a lower intensity (provided you feel okay and have enough energy). Once you are feeling 100% again, then you can slowly increase your activity back to your pre-illness level. If you're feeling sluggish or the workout isn't going well, don't push it. When you push too much, the sickness can end up hanging around longer. 
Posted 4/21/2012  6:00:00 AM By: Jen Mueller : 1 comments   4,666 views
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Everything You Need to Know about Preventing Cold & Flu


Just as you hear someone cough or sneeze this time of year, you may wonder if that is something you should be worried about. Many people will come down with a cold or the flu during the winter months. But how should you take care of yourself when you are sick or around someone who is sick? Do you know the difference between the symptoms of a cold, allergies, and the flu? We have rounded up a variety of resources to help you learn about and sort out all the details about colds, the flu, and your immune system.

Posted 12/15/2011  10:00:00 AM By: Denise Tausig : 11 comments   21,687 views
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Poll: Did You Get a Flu Shot This Year?


Every year, especially since having kids, I go back and forth about getting the flu shot. My family is generally healthy and we don't usually get much more than a routine cough and cold during the winter. My husband works in a hospital where the flu shot is mandatory, and since my daughter started preschool, I've gotten them for my children, too. But I've never gotten the flu shot, which I might live to regret some day.
Posted 1/18/2011  10:25:01 AM By: Jen Mueller : 159 comments   21,214 views
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Quiz: The Secrets of People Who Never Get Sick


Gene Stone has been writing about health (among other topics) for more than two decades.

A few years ago the idea occurred to him that perhaps he was talking to the wrong people. Why not find those people we all know—the ones who say they never get sick—and ask them for their secrets. So he did just that, interviewing many dozens of people around the world until he selected twenty-five people who each possess a different secret of excellent health—a secret that makes sense and has a proven scientific underpinning.

This book tells the story of those people and their secrets, which include food-related secrets—garlic, vitamin C, probiotics, veganism, brewer's yeast. Exercise secrets—the benefits of lifting weights, the power of stretching. Environmental secrets—living in a Blue Zone, understanding the value of germs. Emotional secrets—seek out and stay in touch with friends, cultivate your spirituality. Physical secrets—nap more, take cold showers in the morning. And some wisdom that goes back generations: chicken soup, for instance, and Chinese herbs.

In The Secrets Of People Who Never Get Sick you will find meet 25 people who manage to stay well, along with their secrets, the history and science behind each one of those secrets, and most importantly, how the reader can benefit from the secrets as well.
Read on to take a quiz that will teach you The Secrets Of People Who Never Get Sick.
Posted 11/16/2010  4:00:00 PM By: SparkPeople Guest Blogger : 56 comments   24,040 views
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An Easy Way to Battle the Common Cold


I donít need to look at a calendar to know that cold season has arrived in my house. Runny noses, sneezing and coughing are the norm since my daughter recently started preschool again. I love this time of year for the cooler weather and changing leaves. But in some ways I dread it because at least one person in my family always seems to be sick from October through January.
Posted 10/15/2010  10:28:16 AM By: Jen Mueller : 68 comments   19,474 views
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Hand-washing Is Still the Best Way to Prevent Illness


With the recent outbreak of the H1N1 (Swine Flu) virus and now with seasonal flu just beginning to appear, hand-washing is still considered to be one of the most effective means of preventing the spread of disease. Strangely enough, how a simple act of washing our hands for 20 seconds with good ol’ soap and water can do wonders to keep us all healthy.

Having recently spent some time in the hospital with my Dad after his hip replacement surgery, the one common denominator on all patients’ doors was the sign encouraging hand-washing by every person entering and leaving the room. If you preferred not to wash your hands, anti-septic foam dispensers were found just inside the door. These dispensers are commonplace in many doctor’s offices these days, as well as retirement homes. Have you noticed too, that retail stores, banks, and even some fast food restaurants have resorted to keeping a bottle of alcohol based gel on the counter?

Posted 1/20/2010  4:00:00 PM By: Nancy Howard : 131 comments   14,708 views
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Is Gluten Intolerance on the Rise? What You Should Know


Gluten is a protein found in products made from wheat, rye and some forms of oats. In some people, gluten can trigger an immune response, which damages the fingerlike projections of the small intestine known as villi causing them to become flattened which limits their ability to absorb nutrients properly.

People that suffer from gluten-sensitivity may become diagnosed with an autoimmune condition known as gluten-sensitive enteropathy, non-tropical sprue, or celiac sprue, which are three different names for the same condition. Since the exact cause of celiac disease is unknown, prevention is difficult. For those that can recognize risk factors or identify multiple suggestive symptoms, early diagnosis and treatment can limit long-term complications and ensure a long and healthy life. Celiac disease diagnosis is typically based on results of a series of blood tests and perhaps small intestine tissue evaluation to look at specific antigens and antibodies.

A New York Times article last week reported that celiac disease is frequently overlooked and under diagnosed.

Here are some facts from the article that I found interesting.

  • One out of every 133 people in America has diagnosed celiac disease compared to 10 years ago when it was only about one out of every 10,000 people across the United States.

  • There are approximately three million Americans with celiac disease.

  • It takes about ten years for a person with symptoms to receive a diagnosis of celiac disease.

  • In 2003 there were approximately 135 gluten-free products on the market compared to today where there are over 830.

Back in the 1990's when I was working as a Registered Dietitian in a teaching hospital, it was very rare that I would have a client in need of gluten-restricted diet education or restriction. When someone did have that need, we used a resource list for specialty products that could be mail ordered and eating away from home was strongly discouraged. Today, you can walk into many large supermarkets and find a complete gluten-free section and there are resources such as the Gluten-Free Restaurant Awareness Program to help people find gluten-free dining opportunities. However, the increased awareness and availability of gluten-free foods for those that need them also opens a door for food marketers and fad diet promoters as well.

Posted 12/21/2009  1:41:46 PM By: Tanya Jolliffe : 81 comments   14,860 views
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Exercise Reduces Sick Time Better Than Drugs


As cold and flu season quickly approaches (or has already arrived if you live in my house), questions arise about exercise and illness. Is it okay to exercise if I have a cold? How soon after an illness can I return to regular activity? A lot of us are going to get sick this year, so it's good to know what to do if it happens to you. But what about preventing illness in the first place? We take our vitamins and eat our fruits and vegetables, but can exercise help protect you from getting a cold? Research says "yes."
Posted 10/20/2009  1:00:00 PM By: Jen Mueller : 115 comments   31,043 views
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5 Surprising Foods that Fight the Flu




There are a variety of tips to prevent viruses. When you do find yourself not feeling well, there are various cold and flu survival guides to help you cope which is good since this year the fear of the flu is at an all time high.

We have long known that consuming hot liquids like tea or soup can help break up congestion and that unfortunately, viruses take time to run their course. However, what if there are specific foods you could try this year to help the cold and flu viruses move on more quickly to help you get back on your feet.

Posted 10/19/2009  12:00:00 PM By: Tanya Jolliffe : 43 comments   20,749 views
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Can 8 Cups a Day Protect You from Cold and Flu?


My mom is a bit of a germaphobe, and I've inherited some of her tendencies, like always opening the door of a public restroom with a paper towel upon exiting or touching door handles in public places in less conspicuous places (where others are least likely to have touched them). I do things like this all the time, but when it's cold and flu season, my radar for germs is on full-force. I don't know about where you live, but something is definitely going around Cincinnati!

Everywhere I've gone the past couple of weeks, I've encountered sniffling, coughing people. At the grocery store, in the gym, and even in my workplace! One of my Pilates clients, a regular whom I usually train twice a week, went missing for three weeks straight. Turns out she had the swine flu, as did each of her kids (and every kid she cares for in her at-home daycare business). That really hit home for me. Needless to say, I'm doing everything in my power to avoid germs right now. I simply do not want to get sick!

I had a recent conversation with Coach Tanya that I just had to share. I'm sure that our dailySpark readers, water connoisseurs that you are, will appreciate this one!
Posted 10/16/2009  6:00:00 AM By: Nicole Nichols : 96 comments   16,722 views
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Is it OK to Exercise When You're Sick?


When temperatures begin to dip, it isn't too unusual to see a rise in the number of people walking around with the sniffles and the dreaded runny nose. Much of this has to do with the colder temperatures outside while the warm, dry air inside becomes a breeding ground for these viruses.

It is important to note that a cold is not the flu. While colds and the flu are both caused from viruses and can share common symptoms, colds tend to have milder symptoms, such as a runny nose, and according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention colds generally do not result in other health related issues such as pneumonia.

Flu on the other hand, can be quite contagious, lead to fever, aches and pains, chills, upper respiratory symptoms, a cough and other more serious health related risks such as pneumonia, which may or may not require hospitalization.

Many health experts advise one to continue an exercise regimen at a moderate pace but avoid doing any high intensity workouts if you have a cold, however, now is not the time push your body into some high intensity activity.

Posted 10/10/2009  6:37:05 AM By: Nancy Howard : 131 comments   25,223 views
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