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Monthly Archives: January 2017

Some Risks for Diet Pills

Diet pills can be addictive and can also have harmful side effects even when they are taken according to the doctor’s directions. If you have any health problems, consult your physician before taking any kind of diet pill. Be sure that you follow the directions and be sure that you’re aware of possible side effects. Stop taking the pills immediately if you experience any of them. Some known side effects of diet pills include:

  • anxiety or nervousness,
  • irritability, insomnia and a feeling of restlessness or hyperactivity,
  • high blood pressure,
  • tightness in the chest,
  • heart palpitations,
  • heart attack,
  • stroke or congestive heart failure,
  • digestive tract problems like vomiting, diarrhea, constipation or other stomach pain,
  • fever,
  • dry mouth,
  • headaches,
  • dizziness,
  • blurred vision,
  • profuse sweating,
  • hair loss,
  • menstrual cycle and sex drive disturbances and
  • urinary tract problems.

In the case of overdose, users can experience tremors or convulsions, confusion or hallucinations, breathing problems, renal failure or heart attack.

As you can see, diet pills need to be taken with caution due to all of the physical risks. But there are emotional risks too. Often those trying to lose weight may start to feel emotionally dependent on the pills. They may attribute their initial success to diet pills only, forgetting any diet modifications, exercise or other lifestyle changes that may have been the true reason for the weight loss. People will often ‘pill hop’, trying one new pill after the other, looking for the magic cure that will let them continue to eat whatever they want but still lose weight. However, only a balanced, sensible diet combined with exercise has been proven to keep weight off over any amount of time. And no pill will cause the lifestyle and emotional changes needed to stop overeating and start losing weight.

Side Effects from Vitamin D

Vitamin D overdose happens most often when someone gets plenty of sun exposure, enjoys foods that contain high amounts of Vitamin D, and exceeds the recommended dosage with Vitamin D supplements. If you’re taking a quality multivitamin and getting enough sunshine, you may not need to take additional vitamins at all. Doubling up on supplements of any kind may lead to problems, particularly with vitamins that are stored in the body. In healthy adults, taking more than 40,000 IU of Vitamin D can cause toxicity after several months.

Vitamin D is one of the fat-soluble vitamins, along with Vitamin A, E and K. This means it will dissolve in fat but not water. Once your body absorbs Vitamin D, it stores it in your liver and your fatty tissues. Fat-soluble vitamins can be stored in your body for up to six months.

Although there’s no established threshold for Vitamin D overdose, the upper intake level is generally agreed to be about 4,000 IU per day for most people, from pre-teens to adults. If you’re taking liquid Vitamin D supplements, be sure the dropper is clearly marked so you can get the proper dosage and avoid unwanted Vitamin D side effects.

Vitamin D overdose causes something called hypercalcemia, or too much calcium in the blood. If hypercalcemia is not treated, it results in excess deposits of calcium in soft tissues and organs such as the kidneys, liver, stomach, lungs and heart, causing pain and even organ damage.

Taking excessive amounts of Vitamin D can result in side effects commonly beginning with a loss of appetite, nausea and vomiting. These are often followed by itching, weakness, insomnia, nervousness, general depression, excessive urination, excessive thirst, and in extreme cases, renal failure. Other symptoms of Vitamin D overdose include abnormal bone growth, diarrhea, irritability, weight loss, and severe depression.

Treating Vitamin D toxicity starts with restricting Vitamin D supplements and limiting calcium intake. Exposure to sunlight for prolonged periods doesn’t normally cause Vitamin D overdose, so it isn’t much of a factor in overcoming Vitamin D side effects.

Who Is At Risk of Vitamin D Side Effects?

People with certain medical conditions like hyperparathyroidism are more sensitive to Vitamin D and are more prone to develop hypercalcemia if they get too much Vitamin D.

Maternal hypercalcemia during pregnancy can increase sensitivity for the unborn child. This could lead to tragic consequences such as mental retardation and facial deformities for the baby. Pregnant or breastfeeding women should consult a healthcare professional before taking a Vitamin D supplement.

For liquid Vitamin D meant for babies, the FDA recommends that the dosage dropper holds no more than 400 IU. Babies up to one year old should have no more than 1,000 IU per day. In November 2010, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) increased the daily upper limit to 2,500 IU for children 1 to 3 years old. For ages 4 to 8 years, the maximum dose is 3,000 IU per day.

If you’re a healthy adult and you’re taking large doses of Vitamin D, you could be flirting with some serious side effects. Published cases of toxicity involving hypercalcemia all involve an intake of more than 40,000 IU per day. If your own Vitamin D consumption falls under this limit, then your outcome is likely to be sunny.

Heart Boosters

Garlic

In the 1980’s, research began to demonstrate the amazing value of garlic in the protection of the heart and circulatory system.

Several hundred published research papers show that garlic can lower cholesterol, reduce blood pressure, and make the blood less sticky, thus reducing the risk of clots.

A regular intake of garlic not only protects the heart and circulation and boosts their function, but also protects against food poisoning, other bacterial and fungal infections, and even has some cancer-fighting properties.

Sulfur-rich compounds released when garlic is crushed not only produce it characteristic smell but also most of its therapeutic benefits. For this reason, supplements that are deodorized or made solely of extracted garlic oil are not as effective as either the whole bulb or the standardized whole extract.

Ginkgo Biloba

The potent natural chemicals in ginkgo extract have the unique ability to improve circulation to the brain, at the same time reducing the stickiness of blood.

Research shows that ginkgo is highly effective in improving short-term memory loss in the elderly. Even people in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease can benefit from ginkgo biloba.

There is no evidence that the plant is in any way a treatment for Alzheimer’s, but given in the early stages of the illness it appears to delay the worsening of symptoms by many months.

Research conducted by Professor Ian Hindmarch, of the Human Psychopharmacology Research Unit at the University of Surrey, in England, surveyed the impact of ginkgo on a group of volunteers who were young, healthy, and had no memory problems.

The results demonstrated that ginkgo improved concentration, psychomotor skills, and memory in the group taking 120mg of extract daily.

As a general circulatory stimulant, ginkgo is helpful in the treatment of Raynaud’s disease, chilblains, and tinnitus.

Horse chestnut

Although traditionally horse chestnut was used for its cleansing and anti-inflammatory properties, its most important use is in the treatment of peripheral circulatory disorders.

Aescin, the most powerful of its constituents, acts specifically as a tonic to vein walls, making this an excellent remedy for the relief of varicose veins, fluid retention, and hemorrhoids. Local application is excellent for reducing swelling after an injury.

Lycopene

According to Dr. Venket Rao, from the Department of Nutritional Sciences at the University of Toronto, in Canada, “Population studies have recently shown that women consuming high levels of tomatoes and tomato products rich in lycopene are less likely to suffer from breast, ovarian, and cervical cancers”.

These are the most common cancers in women and the principle cause of cancer-related deaths. Although lycopene is similar to the other carotenoids such as beta-carotene, the unique way in which it works together with vitamin C makes it a most powerful protective antioxidant.

Professor Truscott from Keele University, England, speculates that lycopene may slow the onset of age-related macular degeneration (AMD), the most common cause of poor vision and eventually blindness, in the elderly.

Vitamin Euphoria

Nowadays, artificial vitamins are added to almost every processed food – not because they are so good for you, but because foods that are “enriched” sell better. Cereals, bread, milk, yoghurt, boiled sweets, even dog food with added vitamins leave the supermarket shelves much faster than do those without them. Smokers, meat eaters, sugar addicts, or people who drink too much alcohol can now continue enjoying their self-destructing habits without having to fear the dreaded vitamin deficiency, thanks to the blessed food industry. The magic food supplements have become an insurance policy against poor diet, and nobody has to feel guilty anymore over eating junk food. And on top of that, scientific research suggests that taking large doses of supplements may protect you against disease, even though there is no real evidence to support that claim. As seen in the sales figures, the public believes that the more vitamins you take, the healthier you get.

But are vitamins really so good for your health? Despite the massive amounts of vitamins consumed in modern societies, general health is declining everywhere, except in those countries that still rely mostly on fresh farmed foods. Could the mass consumption of vitamins be even co-responsible for this trend?

Sodium and water are essential to maintain sodium levels and hydrate the body, but too much of either can seriously upset the body’s electrolyte balance. Overconsumption of vitamin A, for example, can cause loss of hair, double vision, headaches, and vomiting in women, all indications of vitamin poisoning. If a woman is pregnant, the supplement can even harm her unborn baby. As we will see, vitamins can even endanger a person’s life.

In the beginning of the 17th century, Japan was afflicted with a disease, called beriberi, which killed many people. By the year 1860, over one third of Japan’s marines had fallen ill with symptoms of weight loss, frequent heart complaints, loss of appetite, irritability, burning sensations in the feet, lack of concentration, and depression. The symptoms quickly disappeared whenever rice, Japan’s most important staple food, was replaced with other foods.

Thirty years later the Dutch physician Christiaan Eijkman conducted an experiment feeding chicken with white rice. The chicken developed symptoms such as loss of weight, weakness, and signs of nerve infection, which Eijkman interpreted as being beriberi. The symptoms disappeared again when the chicken were fed with brown rice. Soon later Eijkman discovered a few, previously unknown substances within the bran of the whole rice; one of them was named B1. This initiated the era of vitamins.

But, as it turned out, beriberi wasn’t caused by vitamin B1 deficiency. People no longer suffered from beriberi once they discontinued eating rice altogether. It should have been noticed from the beginning that, with “no rice – no vitamin B1 – no beriberi,” the disease must have had other causes than vitamin deficiency. Japanese marine soldiers died within three days after consuming white rice, yet it takes much longer than that to get a B1 deficiency. The origin of this mysterious disease was revealed when in 1891 a Japanese researcher discovered that beriberi is caused by the poison citreoviridine. Citreoviridine is produced by mold in white rice that is stored in filthy and humid environments.

Yet until today, the vitamin B1-beriberi-hypothesis is still maintained in medical text books around the world. Although it has never been proved that a B1 deficiency causes such symptoms as fatigue, loss of appetite, exhaustion, depression, irritability, and nerve damage, many patients having these symptoms are told that they have a vitamin-B deficiency. During vitamin B1 trial studies, all the participants complained about the highly monotonous diet they were given; they suffered fatigue and loss of appetite, regardless of whether they received B1 in their diet or not. As soon as they returned to their normal diet, even without B1, the symptoms spontaneously disappeared.

Another B-vitamin is nicotinic acid or also known as niacin. It has become very popular and is now routinely added to many foods. Niacin is supposed to safeguard us against diarrhea, dementia, and the skin disease pellagra. Pellagra is more widespread among people who eat maize, though not everyone who eats maize gets pellagra. Pellagra was found to be caused by food poisoning through spoiled maize. The poison involved has been identified as T2-toxine and is known to disturb niacin metabolism, thus producing pellagra. Besides the great importance given to taking extra niacin today this substance is not really a vitamin at all since it can be produced by the body itself.