Archive for July, 2011

Better body image helps weight loss

July 27th, 2011

London, July 18 (IANS) Improving body image helps in weight loss programs based on diet and exercise.

Obesity is known to increase the risk of diabetes and heart disease and can significantly shorten life expectancy.

Technical University of Lisbon’s Pedro J. Teixeira, who led the research, said: ‘Body image problems are very common amongst overweight and obese people, often leading to comfort eating and more rigid eating patterns, and are obstacles to losing weight.’

‘Our results showed a strong correlation between improvements in body image, especially in reducing anxiety about other peoples’ opinions, and positive changes in eating behaviour.’

Researchers from Technical and Bangor universities (Spain and Britain, respectively) enrolled overweight and obese women on a year-long weight loss programme, reports the International Journal of Behavioural Nutrition and Physical Activity.

Half the women were given general health information about good nutrition, stress management, and the importance of looking after themselves, according to a Technical University statement.

The other half attended 30 weekly group sessions where issues such as exercise, emotional eating, improving body image and the recognition of, and how to overcome, personal barriers to weight loss and lapses from the diet were discussed.

Women in the second group found that the way they thought about their body improved and that concerns about body shape and size were reduced.

Compared to the first group, they were better able to self-regulate their eating and they lost much more weight, losing ann average seven percent of their starting weight compared to less than two percent for the first group.

–Indo-Asian News service

Heat may mean trouble for patients with diabetes

July 22nd, 2011

Heat may have adverse effects in patients with diabetes and those with the disease need to take extra precautions, health professionals warned. Blood glucose levels in patients with diabetes may go down as a result of more energy being used to regulate body temperature, said Southeast Regional Chief Medical Officer Cathy Palmier.

Source

Dentists can identify undiagnosed diabetes

July 21st, 2011

NEW YORK, July 15 (UPI) — Dental visits may offer a way to help identify people with diabetes or pre-diabetes who are unaware of their condition, U.S. researchers say.

Senior author Dr. Ira Lamster, dean of Columbia University College of Dental Medicine, and colleagues recruited approximately 600 people visiting a dental clinic in New York who were age 40 or older if non-Hispanic white, and 30-years-old or older, if Hispanic or non-white, who had never been told they have diabetes or pre-diabetes.

About 530 patients with at least one additional self-reported diabetes risk factor — family history of diabetes, high cholesterol, hypertension or overweight/obesity — received a periodontal examination and a fingerstick, point-of-care hemoglobin A1c test.

To assess and compare the performance of several potential identification protocols, the study participants returned for a fasting plasma glucose test.

The study, published in the Journal of Dental Research, found for the at-risk population among the dental patients, a simple examination of two dental parameters — number of missing teeth and percentage of deep periodontal pockets — was effective in identifying patients with unrecognized diabetes or pre-diabetes.

Source: UPI.COM

Extreme Heat Precautions

July 20th, 2011

 

July 20, 2011, Inez, KY — The Martin County Health Department is urging the public to take the following precautions to avoid injury and illness during this period of extreme heat:

  • Drink plenty of fluids. Increase your daily fluid intake regardless of your activity level. You will need to drink more fluids than your thirst level indicates. This is especially true for people age 65 or older who often have a decreased ability to respond to external temperature changes. In addition, avoid drinking beverages containing alcohol because they will actually cause you to lose more fluid.
  • Wear proper clothing and sunscreen. Choose lightweight, light colored, loose fitting clothing. In the hot sun, wear a wide-brimmed hat that will provide shade and keep the head cool. Sunscreen should be SPF 15 or greater and applied 30 minutes before going out into the sun.
  • Stay cool indoors. The best way to stay cool is in an air-conditioned area. If you do not have an air conditioner, consider visiting a mall or public library. Check with local authorities for local cooling stations that may be available in your area.
  • Don’t leave children or pets inside a vehicle. Lock all unattended vehicles so children can’t enter them. Immediately dial 911 if you see an unattended child in a car.
  • Schedule outdoor activities carefully. If you must be out in the heat, plan your activities so that you are outdoors either before noon or in the evening. Rest periodically so your body’s thermostat will have a chance to recover.
  • Use a buddy system. When working in the heat, monitor the condition of your co-workers and have someone do the same for you. Heat-induced illness can cause a person to become confused or lose consciousness.
  • Monitor those at high risk. Those at greatest risk of heat-related illness include infants and children up to 4 years of age, people 65 years of age or older, those who are ill or on certain medications for blood pressure or diuretics, overweight individuals and those who overexert during work or exercise.

Signs of heat-related illnesses include a very high body temperature (above 103°F); red, hot and dry skin (no sweating); rapid, strong pulse; throbbing headache; dizziness; nausea; confusion; muscle cramps; tiredness and unconsciousness. If someone starts to experience these symptoms, seek medical help immediately and move them to a shady spot. If outdoors, begin cooling them using whatever methods are available. Monitor body temperature, and continue cooling efforts until the body temperature drops to 101-102°F.