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Archive for October, 2012

Antidepressants and Stroke Risk, Carbohydrates and Alzheimer’s, How Healthy Behaviors Fight Disease

October 25, 2012



High-Carb Diet Linked to Early Alzheimer’s | Life Line Screening

High-Carb Diet Linked to Early Alzheimer’s

Do you love filling your plate with delicious, mouth-watering pasta? Every time you do, you’re increasing your early Alzheimer’s risk.

One study shows that when older people eat heavy amounts of carbohydrates, they’re almost 4 times more likely to develop mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Sugars in carbohydrates contribute to the development of MCI, a precursor to Alzheimer’s disease, this First Coast News article says.

Lead author of the study, Rosebud Roberts, says even though not everyone with MCI develops Alzheimer’s disease, many do. The number of people diagnosed with Alzheimer’s is expected to triple by the year 2050. Currently, about 5.2 million people have Alzheimer’s in the United States.

To read more about how a diet high in carbohydrates is linked to Alzheimer’s disease, view this link: http://www.firstcoastnews.com/news/health/article/278621/10/High-carb-diet-is-linked-to-early-Alzheimers

 

Popular Antidepressants May Raise Stroke Risk

New studies show popular antidepressants (commonly referred to as SRRIs) such as Prozac, Zoloft, Paxil and Lexapro may lead to an increase in stroke risk.

One study found this increased stroke risk primarily affects individuals taking the antidepressants who are already at risk for stroke. Researchers suggest these individuals look into taking other forms of antidepressants.

“We should remember that the conditions people take SSRIs for—depression and anxiety—have their own risks in terms of adverse health outcomes, suffering, disability and even suicide,” said Dr. Jordan Smoller, associate professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School in a CBS article.

Life Line Screening conducts preventive health screenings for individuals at risk for stroke. Explore more information on how a stroke screening can bring you valuable peace of mind and then schedule your screening today.

Read the full CBS News article here: http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-204_162-57535201/popular-antidepressants-may-raise-stroke-risk/

 

Fight Disease with Automatic Healthy Behaviors 

Did you know that across the world, more than half of all deaths are caused by 4 diseases: heart disease, cancer, diabetes and chronic respiratory disease? Behaviors linked to the development of these diseases are smoking, overeating, drinking too much alcohol and not exercising.

Studies show that behaviors like those listed above aren’t driven by thinking about the consequences of the action. Instead, the behavior is automatic, performed without thinking, and shaped by our environments. The key, researchers say, is making healthy behaviors automatic rather than unhealthy behaviors. This can be done by altering your environment or changing automatic associations to make the healthier options more attractive.

To find out more on how to make healthy behaviors automatic, read the CNN article here: http://www.cnn.com/2012/10/18/health/automatic-behaviors-disease/index.html

 

What’s Trending on LifeLongHealth.com

Want to get in on the discussions going on right now at LifeLongHealth.com? Check out what’s trending now:

Anything Besides Fiber to Lower Cholesterol? What are other good foods to eat when trying to lower your cholesterol? Share your suggestion here.

Sleep Apnea  Do you have sleep apnea? If so, what has your experience been like? Share it with us.

New Study on 4 Behaviors that Add to Lifelong Health What behaviors are best for a long, healthy life? Join the discussion here.




Heart Medications and Breast Cancer

October 23, 2012





The number of women affected by breast cancer continues to grow, and as part of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, it’s important to keep in mind what we can do to lower our risk.

According to one study, certain medications taken for heart conditions and high blood pressure may have an effect on women with breast cancer. Watch the video below to discover more on this link between heart medications and breast cancer.

Being proactive with your health is a great way to avoid serious, life-altering conditions like breast cancer. Visit Life Line Screening’s YouTube channel to learn more. For those without video capability, the text is provided below.

Heart Medications and Breast Cancer

Here is the audio text to the video:

“For women with breast cancer, it may be very important to watch what drugs are in the medicine cabinet. Two types of drugs, called ACE Inhibitors and Beta Blockers are commonly used for treating high blood pressure and heart problems.

In a new study, California researchers examined how these drugs may affect women with breast cancer. They included nearly 1,800 women who had early stage breast cancer. Almost one-quarter of these women were taking at least one of these drugs.

The researchers found that the women taking ACE inhibitors were 56 percent more likely to see their breast cancer return. However, they weren’t more likely to die from the disease.

Women who took a beta blocker had a lower risk of their cancer returning, as well as a lower risk of dying from the disease.”




Men and Breast Cancer, Early Menopause and Heart Health, Age and Osteoporosis

October 19, 2012

A Common Misconception about Breast Cancer

We know breast cancer primarily affects women and because of that, men tend to believe they aren’t susceptible to the deadly disease. Unfortunately, this just isn’t the case. Men can get breast cancer, too.Life Line Screening supports Breast Cancer Awareness Month

According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, male breast cancer represents about 1 percent of the total breast cancer diagnoses in the United States. Half of the men diagnosed with breast cancer die from the disease. Why? Most men don’t believe they can get breast cancer and therefore ignore any symptoms that pop up, leading to a more advanced stage of cancer once diagnosed.

The article also mentions an informational website on male breast cancer, HisBreastCancer.org, that strives to raise breast cancer awareness for men as well as women.

Do you know a man who has been diagnosed with breast cancer? Tell us about it below.

To read more of this Philadelphia Inquirer article on studies involving male breast cancer, view this link: http://www.philly.com/philly/health/20121017_en_can_and_do_get_breast_cancer__too.html

Early Menopause and Heart Health

Although the focus of October as Breast Cancer Awareness month is incredibly important, we can’t forget the number one killer of U.S. women: heart disease.

Former studies have shown that women who take long-term hormone therapies for menopause have an increased risk of developing breast cancer. This study, published in the current issue of Menopause: The Journal of The North American Menopause Society, reveals a link between early menopause and increased risk of heart disease along with the serious importance of maintaining healthy levels of cholesterol, weight and blood pressure, along with eating more fruits and vegetables.

Life Line Screening urges both men and women to take a proactive stance when it comes to their health by scheduling a preventive health screening. Gain peace of mind or identify a serious health condition like heart disease before it gets worse. Start now.

To read more from the Examiner article on early menopause and heart disease risk, view this link: http://www.examiner.com/article/early-menopause-what-does-it-mean-for-a-woman-s-heart-risk

Think You’re Too Young for Osteoporosis? Think Again

Osteoporosis falls under the category of diseases we commonly link to aging. Many times we think conditions like osteoporosis and stroke only affect the elderly. New reports are showing this isn’t always the case.

“Women and men need to be aware that you don’t need to be old, this isn’t a disease for very old people,” Jacinta Richmond, an active 43-year-old with osteoporosis said in a Brisbane Times article. “This is something that happens now, like it or not, but it’s easy enough to do something about it.”

“Doing something about it” can include anything from more physical activity, a diet with plentiful vitamins and minerals (including calcium), avoiding cigarettes and taking part in health screenings for osteoporosis.

To read more about osteoporosis in younger people, view this link: http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/queensland/brittle-bones-not-just-an-issue-for-the-elderly-20121017-27rn3.html

Do you know someone who’s been diagnosed with osteoporosis at a young age? Share their story with us below.

What’s Trending on LifeLongHealth.com

Want to get in on the discussions going on right now at LifeLongHealth.com? Check out what’s trending now:

Vitamins or Vitamin Drink? Do vitamin drinks really have any health benefits? Find out more here.

Sleep Apnea Do you have sleep apnea? If so, what’s your experience been like? Share it with us.

Water How much water do you drink to feel healthy? Join the discussion here.




World Heart Federation Provides Heart Risk Insight

October 17, 2012

Concern about heart health and risks associated with cardiovascular disease (CVD) seem to be never-ending. Heart disease remains the number one killer in the world, and it’s impact has touched almost all of us in some way.

The World Heart Federation, an organization that strives to “lead the global fight against heart disease and stroke”, released this fascinating infographic with statistics and facts on the global epidemic that is cardiovascular disease. It states that 17.3 million deaths occur worldwide every year from CVD.

After the shock of these facts wear off, the need for preventive action steps in. With simple lifestyle changes like healthier diets, more physical activity and less smoking, we can all do our part to decrease heart disease risk.

Other preventive measures for heart disease include things like health screenings specifically designed to identify a problem before it becomes a serious issue like heart attack or stroke. Life Line Screening offers preventive health screenings for both heart disease and stroke, along with other health conditions. Learn more about how these health screenings work, then schedule yours today.

World Heart Day Infographic




Presenting the Facts by Addressing Margaret McCartney’s Issues against Life Line Screening

October 16, 2012

Recent criticism of our work at Life Line Screening comes from an article written by physician and writer Margaret McCartney, along with her new site PrivateHealthScreening.org. Those of us at Life Line Screening understand there will always be debate about health screenings. We’ve always offered high quality, convenient, affordable private screenings that individuals can voluntarily choose if they have appropriate risk factors and decide that the screenings are right for them.

Criticism of Life Line Screening fails to account for the context in which screenings are taking place. In the U.S., stroke is the fourth most common cause of death and is the leading cause of adult disability (1). This is just one statistic among many that prove we need new ideas and strategies to alter these alarming facts. Identifying serious underlying disease before it leads to a catastrophic event is surely better than waiting until the event happens.

Dr. McCartney mentions that she believes that carotid artery screening is only worthwhile once the person has already had a stroke. This simply does not make any sense. And waiting for “symptoms,” as she suggests, is also a poor strategy as most strokes come without any warning. Only about 15% of people who have a stroke have a warning “mini-stroke” ahead of time, so for the vast majority of people, the stroke comes out of the blue (2).

Also, never in this conversation has Dr. McCartney discussed the benefits of a person finding disease and seeing a doctor in time to put preventive strategies in place. While she is extremely focused on the little possibility of false-positives, she never allows for the opposite and even more powerful situation – someone coming in with something serious who is now able to work with his or her doctor to get back on the right path, thus possibly averting a serious crisis. In fact, a recent paper showed that preventive screening and treatment for vascular disease risks resulted in 14% reduction in premature death and an 11% reduction in reliance on long-term care in comparison to those who did not participate in the study (3).

Life Line Screening has many customer testimonials to attest to our services and is actively engaged in research to better understand the utility and efficacy of screening (4, 5). No screening is without risk, and any screening has a small, but certain risk of adverse outcomes as have any medicines or surgeries. On the basis of probabilities, however, its advantages far outweigh potential risks.

Dr. McCartney and others are certainly free to disagree. However, to ignore the possibility that a model that promotes education and prevention can serve a vital role in the health care continuum is to do a disservice to the very patients she cares for. You’ve seen both sides of the story. Educate yourself with the facts. View our video below to discern for yourself.

References:
1. American Stroke Association: About Stroke. 2012. http://www.strokeassociation.org/STROKEORG/AboutStroke/About-Stroke_UCM_308529_SubHomePage.jsp
2. Most Stroke Patients Do Not Get A Warning: A Population-Based Cohort Study. Hackham DG, Kapral MK, Wang JT, Fang J, Hachinski V. Neurology 2009; 73: 1074-1076.
3. The Vascular Society. Outcomes after elective repair of infra-renal abdominal aortic aneurysm. 2012. http://www.vascularsociety.org.uk/
4. Horst Bickel K-H, Bronner M, Etgen T, et al. Reduction of long-term care dependence after an 8-year primary care prevention program for stroke and dementia: The INVADE Trial. J Am Heart Assoc 2012:1. doi: 10.1161/JAHA.112.000786
5. M Chabok, M Aslam, R Farahmandfar, J Coltart, Epidemiological Study and Risk Analysis in Men and Women of Different Ages with Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm (AAA). International Angiology Journal, June 2012, Vol. 31(Suppl. 1-3) 37.




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