Heavy salt use may increase ulcer risk
Here's another reason to limit salt in your diet. A new report given at
the recent meeting of the American Society for Microbiology in Toronto
indicates that diets high in salt content may increase risk of gastric
and duodenal ulcers.
Researchers at the Uniformed Services University of the Health
Sciences in Bethesda, Md., discovered that high salt concentrations in
the stomach can trigger a genetic tendency for the ulcer-causing H.
pylori bacteria that causes it to become aggressive.
Many Americans, including half of those over the age of 60, are infected
with H. pylori. But only a small percentage of these people develop
Previous research has shown that there is an association between the
bacteria and dietary patterns. The study authors conclude that this is
especially true for diets that include a lot of salt.
It is widely known that consuming a high level of salt creates a risk
for high blood pressure, a serious condition that must be treated
throughout life after diagnosis.
Heart patients can exercise
If you have cardiovascular disease, your risk of a heart attack
during exercise is somewhat greater than a healthy person's risk.
But The American Heart Association maintains the benefits of exercise
far outrank the risk for almost everyone.
Experts say the physical activity must be done regularly and with an
intensity matched to your cardiac health. Ideally, they recommend 30
minutes of aerobic exercise, such as walking, five days a week and two
days a week of flexibility and strength training.
This is the best plan, but doing less is also beneficial if it is
Kids aspirin OK if not coated
Aspirin helps to keep heart attack and stroke-causing blood clots
from forming, but it increases the risk of stomach bleeding. So people
often choose children's 81 mg aspirin tablets rather than the typical
325 mg tablet. Studies show this dose is just as effective as long as
the tablet is not enteric-coated, which may limit absorption. The 81 mg
aspirin also costs more.
As a stomach-saving alternative, doctors at Johns Hopkins suggest
taking the common 325 mg aspirin every other day, which is just as
protective. To help you remember if it's the day to take it, get a 7-day
pill box and load it once a week.
If you think you are having a heart attack, chew a 325 mg uncoated
aspirin for fast release into the bloodstream.
Dietary C and oral protection
Scientists at Harvard have discovered that vitamin C from oranges, other fruits,
and vegetables can reduce your risk of oral cancer by half. The pill
form of C and other vitamins showed no such protection during their
Oranges have 70 mg of C per serving. Other sources include green
peppers, strawberries, tomatoes, broccoli, leafy greens, papayas,
mangos, and some berries.
Avoiding sleep apnea
Doctors reporting in Duke Medicine have found that
simple lifestyle changes can reduce the incidence of sleep apnea. The
goals are to help you breath normally while you sleep and to ease
They recommend sleeping on your side to
keep your throat open, and avoiding alcohol, smoking (and medicines that
make you drowsy) in order to keep your throat open.
If that doesn't work, a mask can be prescribed that
gives continuous airway pressure to keep the throat open.