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|Tired? Depressed? It may be hidden allergies.
|Fend off headaches, yeast infections and possibly depression
By Rick Ansorge, Eric Metcalf and the editors of Prevention Health Books
Scientists acknowledge that allergens can contribute to mood alterations. 69 percent reported feeling more irritable
when their allergies flared up; 63 percent reported more fatigue; 41 percent said that they had difficulty staying
awake; and 31 percent reported feeling "sad."
"Traditionally, allergists have said that depression is the result of the allergic symptoms — you're not sleeping well
or not breathing well because your nose is stuffed up. Now we have a good deal of evidence that suggests there is
a direct biochemical process going on in at least a few people," says Paul S. Marshall, PhD, a psychologist at
Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis.
"Some researchers are beginning to suspect that some types of depression may be triggered by inflammatory
reactions in the body,"
"All we can really do is treat the depression with therapy and/or antidepressant medications and treat the allergies
with shots, antihistamines, and avoidance of the allergens," Marshall says.
Chronic fatigue syndrome
If you've been experiencing extreme exhaustion for 6 months or more and your doctor hasn't been able to identify the cause,
you might have chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). And if you do have CFS, allergies could be playing an important role,
says Leo Galland, MD, director of the Foundation for Integrated Medicine in New York City and author of "Power Healing."
"Chronic fatigue syndrome seems to be associated with an over-reactivity of certain parts of the immune system,
which is similar to what we see in people with allergies." And when allergies are part of the cause, treating the
allergies can be a part of the cure."There have been some patients in whom disabling chronic fatigue totally goes
away when their food allergies were treated," he reports.
Environmental allergens and irritants can also compound your fatigue. "Mold allergy is an important cause of fatigue and muscle aches. A
significant proportion of people with chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia have mold sensitivity," says Galland. "If you have been
diagnosed with CFS, you should see an allergist to get a thorough evaluation for allergies", he advises.
People with allergies know that their sniffling and sneezing is allergen-induced, but allergies don't always present
themselves with such typical symptoms. Sometimes allergic reactions can cause fatigue, headaches — or even
depression. While not everyone agrees there is an allergy link to these conditions, there is evidence that strongly suggests
it. Here's what's been found, and how to control your allergies to alleviate each problem.
|Is Job Stress Making You Sick?
The high price of a high-pressure job.
If you feel constantly on edge, that in itself is your body telling you that you need to take a break—whether a 10-minute walk or a two-week
Sleeplessness is often the first physical symptom of an overstressed life.
If you feel like you're under constant pressure to handle too much work in too little time, you
need to read this special report.
Our success-addicted culture may make you think stress is all in a day's work, but that daily
pressure may be harming your health."If your job stresses you out, your natural defenses
are constantly on high alert." Stress hormones, like cortisol, flood your body, and the buildup
may have a wear-and-tear effect.
A high-pressure job can actually double your risk of a heart attack, and a recent study
reveals that chronic work stress can be just as bad on your mental and physical well-being
as smoking and not exercising. Even working in a noisy office can cause stress hormones to
rise to unhealthy levels.
If prolonged stress goes untreated, over time it can make
your hair fall out, your joints ache, and even stop your
periods.A recent study shows that people who juggle large
workloads and feel overly responsible are the most likely to
be plagued by headaches, muscle pain, fatigue and more
when they're out of the office.
"Everybody has a breaking point," So listen to your body
when it's tired or anxious, and commit yourself to taking
breaks when those signals go off.
"High achievers are the very type of people who think they can handle these feelings on their own," says
Dr. Robinson. "They often don't ask for help until their stress snowballs and turns physical—in the form of
headaches, acne or indigestion." Constant stress will attack where the body is most vulnerable, he adds,
which explains why some people come down with repeated colds and flus (signs of a weak respiratory
tract), and others get clobbered with stomachaches and ulcers (meaning the gastrointestinal system is
|10 Health Benefits of Eating Spicy Food
| Spicy Food is enjoyed all over the world because spices add an incredible amount of flavor to food. Cultures all over the world
have dishes that excite and stimulate your palate with spices and add heat and flavor to everyday ingredients. But if you like spicy
food like chilies, curry and hot sauces, there is so much more to look forward to.
Recent research shows that adding some spice to your meal can provide more health benefits than was ever thought. Yes! You
heard it right; in addition to making your taste buds sizzle, spicy foods can also deliver many health benefits. These include:
- Helps in Losing Weight: Hot peppers contain Capsaicin which can speed up metabolism and help the body burn calories
faster. This is because Capsaicin increases your body temperature and contributes to an increase in your heart rate.
Furthermore, studies have shown that people who eat spicy foods eat smaller portions which can reduce their calories
- Good for heart: Hot peppers may help to improve heart health by improving the body's ability to dissolve blood clots.
Research has shown that low-density cholesterol (LDL or bad cholestrol) resisted oxidation for a longer period of time
(which can clog your arteries) when chili was added to the diet, thus reducing the heart stroke risk. The capsaicin in
peppers also fights inflammation, which has been identified as a risk factor for heart disease. Additionally statistics show
that cultures that eat spicy foods frequently have a much lower rate of heart attack and stroke.
- Improved circulation: Spicy foods also promote good circulation, and they appear to lower blood pressure. When you
eat spicy food, your body's temperature is raised; therefore, it increases your blood flow and gets your heart pumping.
Peppers help strengthen the blood vessel walls as they are high in vitamin A and C.
- Anti cancer: Many studies have shown that regular consumption of chilies and curry decrease the risk of cancer.
Capsaicin slows the growth of cancer cells and in some cases, even causes the cancer cells to die off without harming the
surrounding cells. In countries where diets are traditionally high in capsaicin like India and Mexico, people tend to have
lower rates of some cancers.
- Improved digestion: Spices also improve your digestion because they increase the hydrochloric secretion of your
stomach. This in turn will increase blood flow to the stomach and even increase the mucous lining. Capsaicin also helps to
kill bacteria like H. pylori and help to prevent or cure stomach ulcers. However, if you get heartburn from spicy foods, try
taking an antacid relief tablet which will neutralize acids in the stomach.
- Arthritis: Turmeric (haldi) reduces joint inflammation and bone destruction in people. Circumin present in turmeric helps to
alleviate the pain associated with arthritis.
- Cold and Flu: Capsaicin promotes sweating and eases the discomfort of cold and flu symptoms. It also helps to open up
the nasal passages. It may also reduce sinusitis, and other flu symptoms.
- Improved Sleep Pattern: Australian researchers have found that people who regularly consumed spicy meals fell asleep
more easily. They also woke up easier and had more energy throughout the day.
- Mood lifter: Chili peppers boost the level of endorphins and serotonin that dulls pain and give us a feeling of well being. It
can act as a depression fighter and powerful stress reliever.
- Improves breathing: Hot peppers act as an expectorant, and can help people with asthma,
- chronic bronchitis, emphysema, sinusitis, and other respiratory conditions breathe easier.
- Hot peppers can help you to breathe better by opening up clogged nasal passages.
However, it is important to take spicy foods moderately especially if you
have sensitive stomach or you simply have a low tolerance for them.
Learn to have your food spicy and hot and enjoy the amazing heath
benefits of spicy foods.
|Health Benefits of Banana
| Bananas are a great food for all round health benefits. For the average person, dieter or even athletes, bananas may provide
greater benefits than most fruits. The combination of carbohydrates and B vitamins present in a banana helps provide an energy
This fruit comes in yellow, green, and red varieties and has been proven to have a number of medicinal benefits:
- Boost of Energy: At only about 100 calories, bananas will give you a natural boost of energy. They contain sucrose,
fructose, and glucose which will give you an instant and sustainable amount of energy. Athletes eat bananas frequently for
this reason. A good way to start the day is to slice up a banana and add it to your whole grain cereal.
- Dysentery: Mashed banana together with little salt is a very valuable remedy for dysentery. Ripe bananas are also very
useful in dysentery of children, but they should be thoroughly mashed and beaten to cream before use in these cases.
- Intestinal Disorder: The banana is used as a dietary food against intestinal disorders because of its soft texture and
blandness. It is the only raw fruit which can be eaten without distress in chronic ulcer cases. It neutralizes the over-acidity of
the gastric juices and reduces the irritation of the ulcer by coating the lining of the stomach. Ripe banana are highly
beneficial in the treatment of ulcerative colitis. Being bland, smooth, easily digestible and slightly laxative, they relieve acute
symptoms and promote the healing process.
- Constipation and Diarrhea: Bananas are of great value in constipation and diarrhea as they normalize colonic functions
in the large intestine to absorb large amounts of water for proper bowel moments. Their usefulness in constipation is due to
their richness in pectin, which is water-absorbent and this gives them a bulk producing ability. They also possess the ability
to change the bacteria in the intestines from the harmful type of bacilli to the beneficial acidophilus bacilli.
- Cure a Hangover: A great remedy for a hangover is a banana milkshake with honey. The banana soothes your stomach.
Along with the milk, it rehydrates your system. The honey also comforts your stomach and brings your depleted levels of
blood sugar and potassium back to normal.
- Helps Quit Smoking: The combination of magnesium, potassium, vitamins A1, B6, B12, and Vitamin C help the body with
- Reduced Risk of Stroke: Bananas are an extremely good source of potassium and low in salt. Potassium is important for
the body as it helps keep the body fluids and electrolyte balance in body cells and helps in regulating blood pressure,
thereby reducing the risk of heart attacks and strokes. Research has shown that regular intake of bananas can reduce the
risk of stroke by 40%. A medium-size banana contains at least 450 mg of potassium.
- Improve Your Mood: Banana contain tryptophan, an essential amino acid that is responsible for serotonin production.
Serotonin is a hormone that is known to improve your mood and reduce stress.
- Keeps You Alert: It's widely known that bananas help improve brain function. Once again, it's a good idea to add a
banana to your breakfast before you start the day.
- Anemia: Being high in iron content, bananas are beneficial in the treatment of anemia. They stimulate the production of
hemoglobin in the blood.
- Allergies: The fruit is very useful for those who are allergic to certain foods and who suffer in consequence from skin
rashes or digestive disorders or asthma. Unlike other protein foods, many of which contain an amino-acid which these
persons cannot tolerate and which causes allergy. Bananas contain only benign amino-acids which in most cases are not
allergic. The fruit, however, does cause allergic reactions in certain sensitive persons and they should avoid it.
- Kidney Disorders: Bananas are valuable in kidney disorders because of their low protein and salt content and high
carbohydrate content. They are useful in uremia, a toxic condition of the blood die to kidney congestion and dysfunction. In
such cases, a diet of bananas should only be taken for three to four days, consuming eight to nine bananas a day. This
diet is suitable for all kidney troubles, including nephritis.
- Menstrual Disorders: Cooked banana flower eaten with curd is considered an effective medicine for menstrual disorders
like painful menstruation and excessive bleeding. Banana flower helps increase progesterone hormone which reduces the
- Urinary Disorders: Juice from banana stem is a well-known remedy for urinary disorders. It improves the functional
efficiency of kidney and liver thereby alleviating the discomforts and diseased condition in them. It clears the excretion
organs in the abdominal region of toxins and helps to eliminate them in the form of urine. It has been found to be of great
help in the treatment for the removal of stones in the kidney, gall bladder, and prostate. It is advisable to mix this juice
whenever possible with the juice of ash pumpkin (petha).
- Over-weight: A diet consisting of bananas and skimmed milk is considered an effective remedy for weight reduction.
Bananas need to be treated with care as they bruise easily. The ideal way to store bananas is to keep them at room temperature.
In order to ripen bananas, you can either wrap them in a newspaper or keep them in a brown paper bag. If you store a banana in
a fridge it will turn black. However it will still be edible.