Monthly Archives: April 2013


menopauseCAUSES – Menopause is the state of an absence of menstrual periods.  Menopause is the time in a woman’s life when the ovaries cease their normal function.  Estrogen levels are decreased; which protect the bone.  A woman can develop osteoporosis later in life when her ovaries do not produce adequate estrogen.  Some symptoms of menopause are hot flashes and mood swings.

TREATMENT – Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) or postmenopausal hormone therapy (PHT) consists of estrogens or a combination of estrogens and progesterone. Hormone therapy is used to control the symptoms of menopause related to declining estrogen levels such as hot flashes.  Hormone therapy is available in oral or through a skin patch.  Phytoestrogens have a chemical structure that is similar to the estrogens which is naturally produced by the body and is found in a variety of herbs and foods.  Herbal TherapyBlack cohosh is an herbal preparation that is used for the relief of hot flashes.  There are many supplements and substances that have been listed as “natural” treatments for symptoms of menopause, including Asian ginseng (Panax ginseng) which contgain a form of phytoestrogen,  or plant estrogen, and dong quai (Angelica sinensis).  Estrogenic herbal creams may help relieve vaginal dryness and dry skin. Combinations of motherworth (Leonurus cardiaca), chaste tree (Vitex agnus-castus), hawthorne (Craetegus oxyacantha), and other herbs may help with the rapid heartbeat that comes with hot flashes.

Nutrition and Diet – Eating foods high in plant estrogens may alleviate symptoms:

  • Soy beans
  • Lima beans
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Fennel
  • Celery
  • Parsley
  • Flaxseed oil

PREVENTION – By raising your calcium intake and exercising, you can avoid osteoporosis.  Also, a daily consumption of vitamin E (400 to 800 IU) can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and hot flashes.




CAUSES – Measles is a virus that can be contracted by direct contact.  People that are infected carry the virus in their respiratory tract before they get sick; therefore, they can spread the disease without being aware of it.

TREATMENT – It is very important to contact your child’s pediatrician if you suspect that your child has the measles.  Your child’s school will need to be notified.  The pediatrician should prescribe bed rest, plenty of liquids, and soft-foods diet that are easily to digest.  If a family member has not been exposed, the doctor may give a gamma globulin injection to lessen the course of the illness. Home treatment alone is not recommended.  You should contact your primary healthcare provider for other treatment options.

PREVENTION – Children in the United States usually receive the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine before entering school.  At birth, children are put on a schedule in which to receive specific inoculations.   Children will get their first dose of the measles immunization at 12-15 months of age.  The second dose of the immunization is given when the child is 4 to 6 or 10 to 12 years old.


CAUSES – No one really knows the cause of manic-depression (bipolar). Genetic, neurochemical and environmental factors interact at many levels to play a role in the onset and progression of manic-depression. It is believed to be biological in origin and genetic, i.e., manic-depression tends to run in families. Genetic abnormalities appear in chromosomes. Psychotic symptoms in bipolar disorder tend to reflect the extreme mood state at the time. For example, delusions of grandiosity, such as believing one is the President or has special powers or wealth, may occur during mania; delusions of guilt or worthlessness, such as believing that one is ruined and penniless or has committed some terrible crime, may appear during depression. People with bipolar disorder who have these symptoms are sometimes incorrectly diagnosed as having schizophrenia, another severe mental illness. Some people with bipolar disorder become suicidal.

TREATMENT – Medication is nearly always a part of the recommended treatment course for bipolar disorder. People with undiagnosed bipolar disorder will sometimes self-medicate with alcohol or drugs to try and relieve their symptoms.  Your physician may prescribe older medications, such as lithium, which are reliable and well-tolerated by most.  In order to help with the changing moods and mental balance of a manic-depressive individual, yoga, meditation, t’ai chi, and gigong relaxation techniques could be implemented.

PREVENTION – Caffeinated drinks and foods should be eliminated from the individual diet.  It is imperative to avoid alcohol consumption at all time.  To help prevent an onset episode, adequate sleep is very important.


CAUSES – Lice infestation on the human body (also known as pediculosis) is very common.   Head lice (Pediculus humanus capitis) is the most common infestation and favors no particular socioeconomic group.  Pubic lice is caused by Pthirus pubis and is transmitted by intimate and/or sexual contact.

TREATMENT – It is best to search for head lice when hair is wet. You should use a fine-toothed comb (or a louse comb), clear tape (to stick on hair to pick up nits), a magnifying glass, and a strong light. Over-the-counter treatment is available and should be used first. If after two applications, lice are still present, then prescription anti-lice agents may be needed.  Wash all bed linens and clothing that have been in contact with the infested person in the past two days. Use hot water and the hot cycle in the dryer.

PREVENTION – Head lice can spread quickly and should be checked routinely in children.  Your child’s school should be notified if you find lice in your child’s hair, to prevent other children from getting infected.


CAUSES – Laryngitis can come from several elements; viruses, toxins in the air, chemicals, and from being overused. 

TREATMENT – If the cause is viral, it will go away on its own in a matter of days.  If it is persistent, then there’s a chance that it could be more serious; i.e., bronchitis.  Your physician will prescribe an antibiotic if a bacterial infection has set in.  An antihistamine will be prescribed to help reduce the swelling and inflammation.  Being that singers are prone to getting laryngitis, they will need to rest their voice for a few days.  By supplementing your diet with vitamin C, 20,000 to 50,000 IU a day with beta carotene and garlic, you can boost your immune system.

PREVENTION – You can prevent getting laryngitis by giving your voice proper rest, and avoid straining it.  If you are allergic to certain foods, you can experiment by removing foods that you suspect from your diet.


lactose-milk-allergy-and-lactose-intolerance-1297674-400-308CAUSES – The basis for lactose intolerance is the lack of an enzyme called lactase in the small intestine.  There are three types of lactose intolerance; primary, secondary, and congenital.  Primary lactose develops between the ages of 3 and 13 and continues throughout life.

TREATMENT – Treatment involves avoidance of products that contain lactose or use of lactase enzyme supplements before eating.  it may be necessary to eliminate only milk, yogurt, cottage cheese, and ice cream. There are caplets or tablets of lactase are available to take with milk-containing foods.

PREVENTION – You may have to give up dairy products.  If you do, make sure that you get enough calcium through other foods.


kidney_stoneCAUSES – Kidney stones form when there is a decrease in urine volume and/or an excess of stone-forming substances in the urine. Gout results in chronically increased amount of uric acid in the blood and urine and can lead to the formation of uric acid stones.  High calcium in the urine causes stones in more than half of cases. In this condition, too much calcium is absorbed from food and excreted into the urine, where it may form calcium phosphate or calcium oxalate stones.

TREATMENT – Most kidney stones eventually pass through the urinary tract on their own within three to six weeks, with ample fluid intake. Home care includes the consumption of plenty of fluids and aspirin for pain relief.  If kidney stones do not pass on their own, a procedure which uses shock waves is used to break up a large stone into smaller pieces that can then pass through the urinary system. Surgical techniques have also been developed to remove kidney stones when other treatment methods are not effective.

 PREVENTION – It can be especially helpful to drink more water, since low fluid intake and dehydration are major risk factors for kidney stone formation.  People who have a tendency to form calcium oxalate kidney stones should limit their consumption of foods high in oxalate, such as chocolate, celery, grapes, bell peppers, beans, strawberries, spinach, asparagus, beets, and black tea.