Posts for: July, 2019
Hepatitis C or (HCV) is known as a liver disease with varying degrees of severity, ranging from acute to chronic hepatitis. This illness is usually spread by infections through small amounts of blood exposure. This can occur through unsafe injection practices, unreliable health care, unscreened blood transfusions, and/or sexual practices that lead to blood exposure. An individual who happens to have a chronic case is statistically at a higher risk of developing cirrhosis or liver cancer. Around the globe, we have an estimated 71M people with hepatitis c infection. The World Health Organization estimates that in 2016, approximately 399, 000 people died from this disease, mostly from cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma (liver cancer). The good news is that antiviral medicine serves as a cure to over 95% of hepatitis C cases, which drastically lowers the risk of death associated with cirrhosis and liver cancer. Research has been ongoing to increase treatment options against this illness.
If you happen to be unsure whether or not, you may be at risk...consider getting screened. Early diagnosis can prevent health conditions that are a direct result of the transmission of the virus.
The World Health Organization recommends the following practices to prevent being infected by this disease:
- Safe and appropriate use of health care injections
- Safe handling/disposal of sharps and waste
- Testing of donated blood for HBV and HCV
- Hand hygiene, surgical hand preparation
- Ensuring health personnel are adequately trained
Be mindful of the following symptoms:
- Decreased Appetite
- Abdominal pain
- Dark urine
- joint pain
- jaundice (yellowing of skin/ eyes)
In this current time, the World Health Organization is focusing its efforts on highlighting the need to increase both domestic and international funding to scale up hepatitis prevention, testing and treatment services, to reach their goal of taking treatments to the next level by 2030.
Our digestive system is always on the move, conducting many processes throughout each day. The health of your gut plays a major role in our overall health and well-being. This all occurs within the (GI) or Gastrointestinal tract of the human body. The GI tract measures approximately 30 feet in length! Suprising isn't it?! It works in conjunction with other parts of the Digestive System to break down food into smaller nutrients. Then, these nutrients are then absorbed into the bloodstream throughout other portions of the body for growth, energy, and repair. Why is this important to overall health? Because many human illnesses are attributed to the malfunctions of the Digestive System. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, "60-70 million Americans are affected by digestive diseases, like gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) or Irritable Bowel Syndrome" (IBS). Gerd occurs when our stomach acid rises back up our esophagus or throat. This leads to heartburn and indigestion. Furthermore, Gerd causes abdominal pain and changes in bowel movements. Some people even report experiencing constipation, diarrhea, or a combination of these two symptoms. Links have been found between lifestyle changes that create stress and the onset of IBS. However, if IBS is stress-related and you happen to find someone in your life to help cope with the stressors that raises your risk of acquiring the illness...then the risk will dramatically lower. This is where having a functional, social "support system" matters. As observed by GI expert of the University of California, Dr. Lin Chang, "finding healthy ways to manage stress is important for GI health."
What you eat can help our hurt your digestive system, and influence how you feel.
A healthy life equals a healthy gut.
Are you currently suffering from a case of GERD or Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease? Then, know that you are not alone. This disease has the tendency of causing much discomfort due to stomach contents leaking back into the esophagus. This leads to the symptom of heartburn for many people. Heartburn occurs when stomach acid that has refluxed touches the lining of the esophagus, causing one to experience a burning sensation. Some simple lifestyle tweaks can help lessen the effects of this health condition.
Avoid the following foods:
- Any caffeinated beverage
- Citrus-based juices
- Tomato products
- Fried foods
In addition, eating smaller, but frequent meals can help to reduce stomach pressure that often triggers the reflux effect. Another tip is to reduce the amount of fat per meal because this nutrient takes the longest to exit the stomach compared to a carbohydrate and/or protein. Last quick tip...avoid eating before bedtime. Why? It normally takes about 4-5 hours on average to fully digest a meal. We recommend that one waits at least 3 hours after eating to go to bed.
Have a great weekend everyone!