Snow shoveling can cause heart attack

With winter around the corner, it is important to begin and prepare for the health risks the season brings. Most common risks are colds, joint pains and injuries caused by slipping on ice. But, there’s one more potential risk that should make you concerned: snow shoveling can cause heart attack.

Until now, most believed the urban myth of having a heart attack because of snow shoveling is just an excuse to get out of doing chores. Most wives didn’t take into account that this might actually be a serious health risk. But, the myth goes well beyond the snowy suburbs.

According to Medical News Today, two of the most important cardiology associations in the U.S. actually see snow-shoveling as a high risk physical activity. However, before saying your goodbye to the shovel, the citation references mention that the warning is based on one or two incidents. So, these might have even been coincidental and the underlying cause of the heart attack could have been completely different.

Adrian Baranchuk is a professor in Queen’s School of Medicine and a cardiologist at Kingston General Hospital. Together with his team, he has reviewed KGH patient records from the last two winter seasons to see if the myth had any solid evidence.

The study started on the premise that the one or two incidents “should not be enough to convince us that snow-shoveling is potentially dangerous”. And after looking at 500 patients that reported heart problems during the two previous winter seasons, 7 percent said they were experiencing symptoms while shoveling snow.

This means that out of 500, 35 patients had health problems developed while shoveling snow. As Dr. Baranchuk points out “that is a huge number, 7 per cent of anything in medicine is a significant proportion”. In fact, the figure could be even higher since the study “may have missed some patients who did not mention that they were shoveling snow around the time the episode occurred”.

On top of showing that snow-shoveling can be linked with heart attacks, Dr. Baranchuck’s team also identified the category of people with high of suffering a heart attack when shoveling snow. Thus, men who smoke and have a family history of premature coronary artery disease might want to talk over this with their physicians.

Adam Levine’s secret to a killer bod is Yoga

In today’s world, a fit body is almost essential. There are countless ways to do it, but to be fair not all are healthy and effective. For instance, have you ever thought yoga could keep both your body and mind fit? Well, Adam Levine of Maroon 5 has, and according to Details, yoga is his secret to a killer bod.

Adam Levine has a successful music career. There’s virtually no one left that hasn’t heard about Maroon 5 and the lead singer’s amazing voice. But, with Levine at the moment a judge on reality competition show “The Voice”, fans worldwide got a closer look at their favorite singer. On top of his breathtaking voice he also has a killer body.

Like most singers, artists and celebs, you’d expect Adam Levine to be a gym fan right? But the truth is that the 32-year-old judge on “The Voice” has a different strategy to keep his body fit.

Seeing that his gym routine was not that effective, Levine started the search for a better more healthy way to stay fit. The answer was yoga. It “takes what you have and molds and sculpts it, which is a much more natural way to look and feel”, explains Levine.

Maroon 5’s frontman has been introduced to yoga by instructor Chad Dennis. Until a friend had suggested a session with Dennis, Adam Levine had been keeping his distance from the yoga scene. Now, Dennis is joining the band on tour and keeps track of the singer’s daily routines.

As Levine says, yoga is “an investment in happiness for the rest of my life”. This technique is more than just a way to keep your body fit, it is an amazing method to exercise your mind and relax. The artist explains: “Playing a show before thousands of people is a highly unnatural state and when I get on the mat to do an hour of yoga before the show, I come out physically relaxed”.

Details magazine has actually asked Adam Levine to present and explain his three essential poses. For the layman, these poses might look too complicated, but as Adam swears by, they work in shaping your body beautifully.

Oprah’s trainer, on Thanksgiving healthy habits

Bob Greene, Oprah’s trainer, gives some tips about Thanksgiving healthy habits, regarding diet and exercise. He says that the main idea is to think about healthy living as a habit, just the way you see brushing your teeth.  And to not scare you off completely, here is one important thing you may not have known: holiday meals are “some of the healthiest meals”, Greene says.

Oprah’s trainer, Bob Greene believes that the foods we eat on holidays, including Thanksgiving, are some of the healthiest foods we eat all year. “A traditional turkey dinner, if it’s done right, is a very healthy dinner”.  But what we should be careful about is the amount of food that we ingest. Greene says that stuffing yourself, thinking that “Oh, yeah, I’ll get on the bandwagon January 1st and I’ll go to the gym” is not working. His 30-year-experience backs it up.
According to Greene, it’s not the food that we have to work on, or the physical exercise. It’s our thoughts that have to change. Instead of thinking that we “have to” be on a diet of that we “have to” exercise, we should get into that mind frame that says “I love to move, I’ can’t wait to work out.”

This may seem very hard at the beginning, but Greene says that all of us have to start with a simple step.  “Don’t negotiate your exercise”, he says. “It … might be something you hate to do, but don’t negotiate it. It’s part of every day”.  By not negotiating, he means do not make up excuses so you would work out less or not work out at all. Not even on Thanksgiving!

“Get like 20 minutes, a half hour in, and be done with it, and feel great the rest of the day”. It already seems simpler and easier to do, right?

Good luck!

Fake doctor injects cement in patient’s buttocks

Under the pretense that he is a doctor, a transgender person who goes by the name of Oneal Morris has injected a “patient” with cement flat-tire sealant and mineral oil. Morris, who does not have a medical license, had used the procedure on himself as well, CBS reports.

Choosing to do plastic surgery outside a doctor’s office is clearly a bad choice. However, some people do it, whether it’s for fun, at house parties, or to pay less than what they would pay to a real plastic surgeon. It is the case of a woman in Florida who went to see transgender fake doctor Oneal Ron Morris for some injections in her buttocks. The woman, who did not give her name to the press, needed to have a curvier body in order to get a job at a nightclub. Morris, who was first a man and is now referred to as a woman, injected her patient with cement, flat tire sealant and mineral oil. The he sealed the incisions with superglue.
When the pain became unbearable, Morris reassured the patient that it will go away. “Oh don’t worry, you’ll be fine. We just keep injecting you with the stuff and it all works itself out”, she said. She was sent home and at one point, seeing that her state is deteriorating, her mother called the ambulance. At first, the woman did not want to say what she went through, but when she eventually admitted, the doctors alerted the Health Department. She came with severe abdominal pain and the doctors say that there are damages done that could not be reversed.

Oneal Morris, who is 30 years old, was paid 700 dollars for the operation. It is believed that there are other victims out there, as well. The police made an appeal to them to come forward, as it would really help the case. Morris was arrested for practicing medicine without a license and for severe physical injury. She was released from jail after paying the bond.

Roseanne: “Menopause’s oblivion is f***ing sweet”

Comedienne Roseanne Barr says that the hormonal oblivion at menopause is “is f***ing sweet”. She revealed on Newsweek that since she doesn’t have to struggle with the hormonal storms, she is happier, nicer and more independent.

For most women, menopause comes with mood changes, insecurity and dark thoughts about losing the sex-appeal. On the one hand, taking into account that the sex-appeal is hormonal-based, yes, we will lose it, but this has nothing to do with femininity, which we keep forever. More than that, some of us are blessed with new mood traits that make us more appealing as people. It is the case of comedienne Roseanne Barr, who wrote an article on Newsweek, on November 21 that, on the “Joys of Menopause”.  Hilariously describing the physical phenomenon as the changing that renders you “wet where you used to be dry and dry where you used to be wet”, 59-year-old Barr says that there are some good parts of menopause that should not be ignored. “After menopause, I discovered the joy of drinking wine, and of sinking deeply into writing and time alone”, she says. More than that, she feels better now, that she is no longer the slave of her hormones, eager to always have beside her a dominating male. As she feels “gradually relieved” from that, she remembers how much sweat and tears came with the sex drive and “the kids that come from it”.

“Oblivion will be f***ing sweet after a lifetime at the mercy of my hormones” Barr added. This, however, doesn’t mean that she doesn’t want or need a partner anymore. But the things she is looking for in a man are now different. She confessed that it is a joy for her that, in her “autumn years”, she has found a man who is “more savant than idiot” and with whom she can share a truly rich life.

Watching TV triggers depression in women

Watching too much TV can trigger depression in women, by not allowing the body and the brain to be stimulated.  Even if it has its positive sides – it keeps us informed and entertained, the television watching activity must be occasional and not an everyday habit. Studies have shown that physical exercise keeps people, and especially women, away from depressing thoughts.
According to an article published in the American Journal of Epidemiology, women who dedicate little time to watching TV and more time to physical activity are at a lower risk of depression than those who watch lots of TV and forget to exercise. Michel Lucas from Harvard School of Public Health is the author of a recent study on the matter. Together with his colleagues, he took data from the questionnaires filled out by women who participated in the Nurses’ Health Study between 1992 and 2000. Of them, almost 50,000 had no depression signs in 1996. The questionnaires included data about the type and the amount of physical activity done on a daily basis. It also included information regarding the watching TV habits. After concluding how much exercise and how much TV watching these women had in their schedule, the researchers then studied the data in the follow-up (from 1996 to 2006), collecting the information regarding depression: whether they were diagnosed, whether they thought they had it and whether they were taking any antidepressants.

Here are the conclusions of the study:

The follow-up resulted in over 6,500 cases of depression. After eliminating other factors that may have contributed to the condition, such as weight, smoking or certain illnesses, it was noticed that most of the majority of women with depression had low physical activity and watched TV a lot.

As a conclusion, women who exercise 90 minutes a day had lowered their depression risk with 20%. Women who watch TV 21 hours or more per week had increased their depression risk with 13%. The two activities have contributed independently to the depression risk, which means that even if you watch TV a lot, you can still be safe from depression, if you exercise a lot, as well.

Walking through doorways can make us forget stuff

There is an explanation to why walking through doorways can make us forget stuff that we were doing. According to Professor Gabriel Radvansky from the University of Notre Dame in Indiana, the phenomenon occurs as an “event boundary”, Medical News Today reports.

It must have happened to you, too:  wanting to get something from a certain room and when you get there, you forget what you went there for in the first place. It is not early Alzheimer’s, as some may be joking about, nor it is any other serious memory problems. Gabriel Radvansky, a Psychology Proseffor at the University of Notre Dame in Indiana, United States, explains the phenomenon in a recent article posted on the University’s website. “Entering or exiting through a doorway serves as an ‘event boundary’ in the mind, which separates episodes of activity and files them away”, he says. The compartmentalization of the activities done in different rooms makes it difficult to remember what we were doing before entering the new room. 

The “event boundary” is a subject Prof. Radvansky is currently exploring.  Together with his team, he has published several articles on the matter. Their latest study was published in the Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology. Previous studies have proven that there is a location-updating effect which translates through a slight memory decline, when people are changing location, from one room to another. What Prof. Radvansky is trying to find out is the degree in which the environment influences the memory decline.
Until now, it was proven that:

– Distance has nothing to do with memory decline: people deciding upon an activity in one room and then moving in the room for a certain distance had no memory impairment; those deciding upon an activity and walking the same distance but stepping out of the room suffered a memory decline.
– Memory impairment occurs both in real and virtual rooms
– If a person decides upon an activity in one room, the passes through other rooms, ending up in the first room, the original room does not have any influence on the memory decline suffered when leaving it in the first place.

Female orgasm, similar to epileptic seizure, scientists say

Scientists at the Rutgers University, New Jersey, US, say that the female orgasm is similar to an epileptic seizure. The conclusion was drawn after a test done by using a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scanner to measure the changing level of oxygen utilization in a five-minute brain networking activity recording.
During the Society for Neuroscience Annual Meeting, which took place in Washington, D.C. the researchers at the Rutgers University, New Jersey have presented their latest findings in regard to the female orgasm. They have recorded the brain activity for a period of five minutes, monitoring the changes in the oxygen utilization before, during and after the orgasm.

The volunteer for the experiment was one of Rutgers’s PhD candidates, Nan Wise, a sex therapist.   “Secondary to an epileptic seizure, there’s no bigger brain networking event”, she said in an interview to UK’s The Guardian. Wise added that the experiment is part of her PhD work. “It’s my dissertation. I’m committed to it”.

The video footage consists in a series of fMRI snapshots that were taken a couple of seconds apart from each other. In the pictures showing 40 different brain regions on each side the oxygen utilization is showed in colors, from dark red at the beginning. As time passes, the red becomes orange, turning to bright white invading all the areas in the end, representing the highest level of cerebral activity.

The researchers say that finding how pleasure is obtained at a brain level can help in treating people who are confronted with a sexual blockage. “If we can learn how to activate the pleasure regions of the brain then that could have wider applications”, says Prof. Barry Komisaruk. Among other problems that could benefit from the findings are psychiatric conditions, such as anxiety or depression.

Why giving up sweets requires psychotherapy

Far from being just a biological need, the sugar craves have a more sensitive background and giving up sweets requires psychotherapy in most of the cases.

Losing weight has always been an issue for most of the women. Few of us have the “luck” of being born with a genetic “helping hand” that drives the metabolism at a higher speed, so that the fats will burn faster. But in most cases, it’s not about genetics. When do you know it is something else?

Every person can have cravings occasionally. It is when it becomes a habit to eat only as a result of a craving impulse that the problem appears. When you are eating without really being hungry, but because you feel the drive of stuffing yourself with a certain food, you are doing two things: you ingest quantities of unneeded food (probably not the healthiest, either) and you are trying to fill an emotional void.

A close attention to your eating habits will uncover that you are somehow driven to eat at certain moments (the evening, the time when you are left home alone, the time before an important meeting at work, and so on). Basically, it’s every moment that you feel the stress level is going up. Some people eat when they are bored, as a mechanism of coping with the anxiety of having nothing to do. And the more you feel the pressure of stressing situations, the more likely you are to eat uncontrollably.
The majority of cravings involve sweets. And of them, only the most fatty, creamy, sugary ones become interesting enough. The reason why this happens is partly biological. Sugar raises the levels of serotonin in the brain, which allows us to put our guard down and diminish the anxiety.  But as we have seen, stuffing ourselves with muffins is not the best treatment for anxiety.

Psychotherapy is the best way to go when you want to lose weight, give up sweets or dealing with food cravings. The therapist will be able to remove the cause of the anxiety, thus allowing you to be more comfortable in your own skin and say goodbye to the food addiction moments.

Sugary drinks, to blame for diabetes and heart disease in women at healthy weight

Women who are at a healthy weight but consume sugary drinks on a daily basis are at a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes or heart disease than other women, who drink sweetened beverages occasionally. The findings of a new study presented over the weekend to the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions, indicate that two glasses of soda (or any other sugary drink) per day increase the chance of the above mentioned diseases four times. The study was first mentioned by Medical News Today.

During the AHA Scientific Sessions, that take place between 12 and 16 November in Orlando, Florida, a team of scientists led by Dr. Christina Shay conducted researches in order to find out if there was a connection between type 2 diabetes and heart diseases, and the amount of sugary drinks consumed as a habit. The hypothesis was found valid.

The study consisted in the analysis of a group of over 4,000 women with ages between 45 and 84, of different ethnicities, who drank two or more sugar-sweetened beverages. They were given questionnaires which measured food frequency. The tests, which were given from 2000 to 2002, revealed that those women had more chances of developing a larger waist and they were four times more at risk of developing high triglycerides, which are connected to the risk of heart disease.

“Women who drank more than two sugar-sweetened drinks a day had increasing waist sizes, but weren’t necessarily gaining weight”, said Dr. Shay. “This study showed that risk factors for heart disease and stroke developed even when the women didn’t gain weight”.
The link, however, is not valid in the case of men.

It is yet still unknown how exactly the drinks influence the risk of such diseases. The scientists are planning on studying the problem further, in order to understand what biological mechanisms take place behind it.