Wednesday, 08 May 2013 15:48
Dr. Annice Golden, Director of Behavioral Health, NorthPoint Health & Wellness Center
Pathway to Wellness is the theme for this year's "May is Mental Health Month" campaign. For over 60 years, Mental Health America has promoted "May is Mental Health Month" and has reached millions through media and events, providing information about prevention and treatment for mental health conditions. In an effort to raise more awareness, NorthPoint staff will be available to answer questions about mental health and wellness as well as educational materials. Staff will be in the lobbies of the clinic and Human Services every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday throughout the month of May. A free confidential mental health screening will also be available.
If you have found it challenging to stick to an exercise plan this past year, listen up! Routine exercise isn't just good for your physical health, new research has found when you ride a bike, hike, walk outdoors or do laps around an indoor walking track, and you're also helping your memory.
Answer: Meat can provide many essential nutrients in our diet. It is a rich source of iron and of protein that is the building block for muscle and many of the chemical processes in our body. However, it is not the only source for protein. Non-meat sources of protein include dairy products, eggs, nuts and beans. It is possible to get enough protein in your diet without eating meat and many people chose to adopt a meat-free lifestyle for religious, health or ethical reasons. There are so many recommendations these days about how we should be eating. Some of these recommendations are often in direct conflict to one another. One area where many diets differ is on their recommendations about eating meat - some recommend eating a lot of meat while others recommend limiting or cutting meat out of one's diet completely. What is best? Read on.
Did You Know? Five facts about chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
(StatePoint) For many of the 12 million Americans with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or COPD, breathlessness, coughing and mucus production may not be symptoms of a nagging cold, but serious, daily effects of a progressive, irreversible lung disease that includes the respiratory illnesses chronic bronchitis and emphysema.
While COPD is a leading cause of death and disability in the U.S. and worldwide, many Americans are not aware that the disease even exists.
"Awareness is important to help ensure people are being diagnosed and treated properly," said Dr. Antonio Anzueto, a pulmonary specialist and professor of medicine at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. "Symptoms of COPD -- such as shortness of breath and a lingering cough -- can often be attributed to something else. With increased awareness, we are able to diagnose and treat COPD earlier, which can limit the amount of lung damage and help improve the quality of life for patients."
Facts You Should Know About COPD
• COPD is the third leading cause of death in the U.S. and kills more than 120,000 Americans each year. That's approximately one death every four minutes. In recent years, COPD death rates for women have risen steadily. Today, more women than men die from COPD each year.
• Only half of the people living with COPD in the U.S. have been correctly diagnosed, potentially leaving an additional 12 million Americans with undiagnosed COPD. One reason for under-diagnosis is that the symptoms of COPD can be mistaken for other conditions, such as asthma, another chronic inflammatory lung disease. While COPD and asthma have similar characteristics, they are two distinct conditions with varying treatment strategies.
• Smoking is identified as the most common risk factor for COPD. However, as approximately 20 percent of smokers develop COPD, it is believed that genetic and environmental factors can also influence the risk of developing COPD. It is also now recognized that 10 to 20 percent of COPD patients have never smoked. Nonetheless, smoking accounted for as much as 90 percent of COPD-related deaths.
• The assessment of COPD should determine the severity of airflow limitation in the lungs, the impact of symptoms on a patient's health and a patient's future risk of events, such as a COPD flare-up or exacerbation that could lead to physician office visits or hospitalization. This evaluation helps determine the progression of disease and guide therapeutic recommendations for each patient.
• While there is no cure for COPD, it is manageable. Lifestyle changes, such as smoking cessation, healthy eating and exercise, are recommended for COPD patients. According to Dr. Anzueto, "Shortness of breath can steer COPD patients away from exercise. However, there are many health benefits from regular exercise that can help COPD patients." Pulmonary rehabilitation, which includes breathing strategies and exercise training, can help improve COPD symptoms. Various prescription medications are also available to help COPD patients at all stages of severity manage their disease. Dr. Anzueto recommends that COPD patients speak with their doctor about the available treatment options.
"Today, treatment options are available that can help people with COPD, no matter how severe their disease," said Dr. Anuzeto. "When medications are combined with healthy lifestyle changes, many people with COPD find that they can continue doing the things they love doing."