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7 Ways Smartwatches Will Monitor you Health

Healthy Smartwatch
As wearable tech gains popularity, we’ve started to imagine how it might affect our lives if it reaches mainstream use, and personal health tracking has taken center stage in the discussion. Smartwatches are coming out with health-related apps that utilize your movements and vital signs to help you keep track of — and accomplish — your health goals. Here are several of the ways you can use wearable tech to improve your health and fitness.

1. Track your sleep patterns

There’s no doubt about the modern era’s troubled relationship with a healthy sleep cycle. Whatever the reasons for it may be, it’s hard to break the cycle of poor sleep habits once you start. Smartwatches are a genius solution to monitoring your sleep cycle — and figuring out what’s keeping you from having a healthy one. Many sleep monitoring apps for smartwatches will give you suggestions on how to improve your sleep over time based on your unique sleep activity, so you can actually improve and get the rest you need.

2. Control your calorie intake

Smartwatch apps for tracking your calories are among the most popular being developed for the devices, making keeping track convenient and paperless. Even better, some calorie tracking apps are designed to give you encouragement through your tracking process and praise when you achieve your intake goals. One app will even connect you with your friends and family who want to encourage you to stay on track!

3. Go the extra mile

Even the simplest smartwatches are boasting pedometer tech, so you’re likely to get this feature even if you can’t shell out $349 for Apple’s new wearable device. Tracking the number of steps you take each day is a proven way to get you to move more and reach your optimal activity level. Having this technology in a wearable is certainly more attractive than stand-alone pedometers, not to mention the usefulness of a device that does a lot more than just count your steps. You’ll have less reason to not purchase a smartwatch than you would with a one-use device.

4. Record and perfect your exercise route

Similar to tracking your steps, tracking the route you take to run/walk/bike/etc. has been around for a while, but always on a stand-alone device or in your smartphone and thus requiring you to carry it whether you were planning to or not. Only now, some smartwatch route-tracking apps will keep track of your exercise route and give you suggestions for alternative or better ones. Perfect for those who need a change of scenery every now and then to keep them motivated.

5. Monitor your blood pressure

Recording heart rate and steps taken are easy capabilities to imagine, but did you know we can now measure and record our blood pressure through wearables? Normally a blood pressure measurement requires a trip to the doctor or a well-equipped pharmacy. Now you can keep track of your BP on your own, a crucial ability as you get older or for people with existing high BP-related conditions.

6. Manage your stress

Many stress management apps for smartwatches use your heart rate and other vital signs to monitor your level of stress throughout the day. Tracking multiple vital signs, wearables are able to pick up on the ebb and flow of your stress and help you pin-point where the highest levels are coming from. Some of these apps will give you tips and suggestions on how to manage your stress. Plus, having this stress-tracking system strapped to your wrist eliminates the added stress of remembering to bring a device wherever you go.

7. Get your own mini personal trainer

Need encouragement when you work out? Personal trainers are expensive and not accessible by everyone, but personal trainer apps for smartwatches are growing in popularity, offering encouragement and praise during your work outs or advice on how to move forward with your routine. Develop your workout schedule, get suggestions on new moves to try, and receive personalized feedback to keep you motivated. What more do you need?

10 Reasons Why You Should Get More Healthy Oils In Your Diet (with recommendations)

We live in a society where we are constantly bombarded with messages from the media and with products attempting to eliminate all fats from our diets. There are no-fat cookies, cakes, breads, crackers, pastas, salad dressing, chips, and the list goes on and on. What few people realise, however, is that completely eliminating fat from your diet is the worst things you can do. The truth is that fats are very important to our diets and overall health; the secret is to know which fats are healthy and which fats kill . Every cell in your body requires fat (healthy oils) to function, particularly your brain, which is made up of 60% fat. In this article today, I will give 10 Reasons Why Should Get More Healthy Oils In Your Diet, and what choices are available to you:

1. Healthier  Cell Function

Essential fatty acids are necessary for many vital functions in cells, tissues and organs. They increase oxidisation and metabolic rate. Energy levels rise with higher stamina and decreased recovery time.

2. Healthier Skin Complexion

Besides creating smooth velvety skin, healthy oils improve acne, psoriasis, and eczema.

3. Better Digestion

Essential oils from fats help prevent leaky intestines that can lead to allergies, inflammation, and auto-immune problems.

4. Cardiovascular Health

In the cardiovascular system fatty acids are required to transport cholesterol, lower triglycerides, make platelets less sticky, and lower blood pressure.

5. Elevate Your Mood

Healthy oils elevate mood, lift depression, and improve our stability to deal with stress. High stress levels promote high blood pressure, water retention, inflammation, and blood clot formation.

6. Stabilise Heartbeat

Fatty acids stabilise heartbeat, preventing heartbeat abnormalities that can lead to cardiac arrest.

7. Healthier Kidneys

Overweight people and animals benefit from fatty acids because their kidneys expel excess water.

8. DNA Protection

In the immune system, essential fatty acids protect DNA damage. Although it’s not a cure for cancer, essential fatty acids benefit people with cancer.

9. Better Mineral Transport

Essential fatty acids are involved in transporting mineral through the body.

10. Healthier Pregnancy

Research indicates that an unborn child draws from it’s mother body substantial amounts of the essential fatty acids from healthy oils that are required to build it’s brain.
Here is a list below of some of the essential fats needed for better health:
  • Udo’s Oil (Omega 3 to omega 6 in a ratio of 2:1)
  • Flax seed oil
  • Olive oil
  • Avacado
  • Fish Oils
  • Nuts such as: almonds, hazelnuts, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds
Remember, while you need to be sure to ingest enough essential sustaining fats, you also want to avoid ‘killer fats’ that are devoid of life, or even too many ‘fat-free’ products that are devoid of life. These foods then to be void of nutrition and also higher in salt and sugar, chemicals and starches.

Most people are aware of the fact that a diet that’s too rich in sugar and the lack of physical activity can make them prone to gaining excess weight and developing type 2 diabetes. This ailment occurs when blood sugar levels remain elevated for too long and can be caused by an insufficient production of insulin or by the organism’s inability to use this hormone efficiently for moving glucose from the bloodstream to cells.

People affected by diabetes are at higher risk for high cholesterol and blood pressure and are more likely to develop heart diseases and to suffer a stroke. Also, they’re likely to experience vision problems, to gain weight, to suffer from slow-healing wounds and from fatigue.
However, this ailment doesn’t always get the deserved attention, maybe because in its initial stages the symptoms aren’t that easy to recognize, or because people don’t realize how threatening this condition is and how much it can damage their overall health. Given below are 11 of the most serious effects of diabetes on one’s health and body.

1. Diabetes damages the kidneys and increases the risk of kidney failure. When there’s too much sugar in the bloodstream, the transport of oxygen and nutrients to kidneys is altered, and these organs can’t function properly. Their ability to filter waste products from the blood is impaired, and debris can accumulate, leading to diabetic nephropathy.
This condition doesn’t manifest through specific symptoms in the early stages, but left untreated it can lead to irreversible kidney damage and failure. You may however notice some signs that can tell you that your kidneys aren’t working properly, such as swelling in your feet and legs.

2. Diabetes affects the blood vessels and favors hypertension. When the levels of blood sugar remain elevated for too long, the risk of plaque formation increases, and once the fatty materials accumulate on the walls of blood vessels, blood flow is restricted. The fatty deposits can lead to the hardening of blood vessels walls and to higher than normal blood pressure.

3. Hyperglycemia can harm your nerves and increase the risk of diabetic neuropathy. It is estimated that about 70% of people dealing with this condition are suffering from neuropathy, which can be either peripheral diabetic neuropathy or autonomic neuropathy.
The former affects the hands and toes and leads to pain and the loss of sensation in feet, while the latter affects the nerves that control the internal organs, leading to problems like dizziness, fainting, gastroparesis, sexual problems and urination problems. Peripheral diabetic neuropathy is more common and manifests not only through a decreased sensation in the extremities, but also through cold feet and wounds that heal very slowly.
Due to the decreased sensation and poor blood flow, one may not notice an injury or infection and this increases the risk of developing leg ulcers, and of having a foot amputated.

4. Diabetes increases the risk of heart disease and stroke. Heart disease is common among people affected by this ailment, and people who don’t manage to keep their diabetes under control are twice as likely to suffer a stroke as people who have normal blood sugar levels.

5. People affected by this condition suffer from dry and cracked skin. Like all the other cells in your body, skin cells receive nutrients, water and oxygen through the bloodstream, and when the composition of this fluid is altered by too much sugar, skin problems can occur.
The typical issues diabetes sufferers have to deal with include dry and cracked skin, as well as an increased risk of skin infections and calluses, which can lead to ulcers if left untreated. Boils and infections of the hair follicles are common in diabetes sufferers, and nails tend to be unhealthy as well.

6. Diabetes affects your eyes and increases the risk of retinopathy, glaucoma and cataracts. Retinopathy occurs when the blood vessels in the retina become damaged as a result of hyperglycemia. This condition is asymptomatic in the early stages, but can be detected with specific tests, early treatments reducing the risk of further eye damage.
Cataracts occurs when the lens of the eye becomes cloudy, and leads to distorted vision and increased sensitivity to glare. Glaucoma appears when fluid builds up inside the eyes at higher than normal levels. This creates pressure inside the eye and can lead to irreversible damage.

7. Pregnant women can develop gestational diabetes, and this increases the risk of preeclampsia. Gestational diabetes occurs when the pregnancy hormones interfere with the organism’s ability to process insulin, and sugar remains in the bloodstream for too long. It is estimated that about 4% of pregnant women develop this condition each year.

8. Diabetes affects the health of teeth and increases the risk of gum disease. People suffering from this condition are more likely to have red and swollen gums and to experience frequent bleeding and tooth infections. In the long run, this can lead to tooth loss.

9. People suffering from this ailment are more prone to having high levels of bad cholesterol and triglycerides. These increase the risk of high blood pressure and obesity, and can contribute to metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular disease.

10. Diabetes may make one more prone to depression due to its metabolic effect on the brain, and to the variations in blood sugar levels.

11. Diabetes weakens the immune system, making you more prone to illness. People suffering from this condition experience flu and cold episodes more often and are more likely to become sick.

A new study published in Sleep has reinforced the importance of getting a good night's sleep. Researchers have demonstrated that not getting enough sleep could increase the risk of catching a cold.

The team reports that people who only get 6 hours sleep a night or less are four times more likely to catch a cold after exposure to the virus than people that get 7 or more hours sleep a night. 

"Short sleep was more important than any other factor in predicting subjects' likelihood of catching cold," says lead author Aric Prather, assistant professor of Psychiatry at the University of California-San Francisco (UCSF).

"It didn't matter how old people were, their stress levels, their race, education or income. It didn't matter if they were a smoker. With all those things taken into account, statistically sleep still carried the day."
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have previously referred to insufficient sleep as a "public health epidemic," linking it with motor vehicle crashes, industrial disasters and occupational errors.
In the past, Medical News Today have reported on studies finding that poor sleep may be linked to poor metabolic health and could raise the risk of heart attack and stroke.

Unfortunately, insufficient sleep is prevalent in the US. According to the National Sleep Foundation, 1 in 5 Americans obtain less than 6 hours sleep on an average work night.
While Dr. Prather had previously found that people who get insufficient sleep are less protected from illness after vaccination than people who get adequate sleep, the aim of his team's new study was to learn how sleep affects how the body responds to real infection.

Less than 5 hours sleep, 4.5 times the risk of catching a cold

A total of 164 participants were recruited and given the common cold virus via nasal drops so that the researchers could analyze how various factors affected the body's capacity to fight the virus off. The participants were monitored for a week and had mucus samples taken each day so the progress of the virus could be assessed.
Prior to being given the virus, each participant underwent 2 months of health screening. Their normal sleep habits were also recorded during the week leading up to the administering of the virus, using a watch-like sensor that was worn overnight.

The researchers found that the participants who had slept less than 6 hours a night during the preceding week were 4.2 times more likely to catch a cold than participants who managed to get 7 hours or more a night. Participants who slept less than 5 hours were 4.5 times more likely.
One of the strengths of the study, according to the authors, is that it is based on the participant's usual sleep cycles rather than artificially depriving the volunteers of sleep. "This could be a typical week for someone during cold season," Dr. Prather states.
While the study provides further evidence for the importance of sleep in keeping physically healthy, the researchers believe it will take a lot more work before widespread attitudes toward sleep are changed.
"In our busy culture, there's still a fair amount of pride about not having to sleep and getting a lot of work done," Dr. Prather concludes. "We need more studies like this to begin to drive home that sleep is a critical piece to our wellbeing."

Recently, MNT reported on new research revealing the mechanism behind how an animal's biological clock wakes it up and puts it to sleep. The study's findings could eventually lead to new drug targets for treating disorders related to body clock problems, such as jet lag.

Go Natural To Prevent Psoriasis

remedies for psoriasis
Mayo Clinic defines Psoriasis as a common skin condition that changes the life cycle of skin cells. This chronic disease causes cells to build up rapidly on the surface of the skin. The extra skin cells form a thick silvery layer on the skin which sometimes becomes painful.
The body naturally produces new skin cells every month to replace the dead skin cells that sheds or flakes off. However, those who suffer from psoriasis the new skin cells form within days rather than weeks. So these newly formed cells accumulate on the skin surface causing acute discomfort. Psoriasis can happen to anyone and people belonging to the age group of 15-35 years are susceptible to this persistent disease reports National Psoriasis Foundation.

Psoriasis also occurs if your immune system is not functioning properly. A type of white blood cell called T lymphocyte or T cell detects and fights foreign bodies like viruses and bacteria. If you are suffering from psoriasis then the T cells attack the healthy skin cells by mistake as if to fight an infection or heal a wound. Overactive T cells trigger other immune responses which include dilation of blood vessels in the skin surrounding the plaques and a rapid increase of white blood cells that reach the outer layer of the skin. These changes bring about an increased production of healthy skin cells, T cells and other white blood cells. As a result the new skin cells move to the outermost layer of the skin in a matter of days and dead skin cells can’t slough off that quickly. This forms thick scaly patches on the skin.

Researchers say that genes and environmental factors are responsible for the malfunction of T cells in people with psoriasis. Here are some factors that can trigger psoriasis-
  • Infections like strep throat and other skin infection.
  • Injury to the skin like bug bites and cuts
  • Severe sunburn
  • Uncontrolled stress
  • Cold weather
  • Smoking
  • Heavy alcohol consumption
  • Certain medicines like lithium, high blood pressure medicines, anti-malarial drugs and iodides.
  • Obesity
The symptoms of psoriasis vary from one person to another, some common symptoms include:

  • Red patches of skin with silvery scales
  • Children have small scaling spots
  • Dry cracked skin that bleeds
  • Itching, burning and soreness
  • Thick, pitted and ridged nails
  • Swollen and stiff joints
  • Psoriasis patches often resemble dandruff like scaling but sometimes severe eruptions covering large areas can occur.

To understand the symptoms better it is important to know about different types of psoriasis-

Plaque Psoriasis: It is the most common form of psoriasis that causes dry, raised, red skin lesions or plaques covered with silvery scales. It can occur anywhere in your body like soft tissues inside your mouth.

Nail Psoriasis: Psoriasis can also affect fingernails and toenails. In severe cases the nails can crumble and separate from the nail bed (onycholysis). In normal cases the nails become discoloured and pitted.

Scalp Psoriasis: Psoriasis on the scalp resembles red, itchy areas with silvery white scales. The affected areas can extend beyond the hairline. So every time you scratch your scalp you will find the white flakes on your shoulders and hair.

Guttate Psoriasis: This commonly occurs in children and young adults. This type of psoriasis is usually triggered by bacterial infection like strep throat. Water-drop shaped sores appear on the trunk, arms, legs and scalp. These sores are covered with fine scales.

Inverse Psoriasis: This type of psoriasis is triggered by fungal infection and is aggravated by chafing and sweating. Inverse psoriasis affects the skin in the armpits, groin, genitals and area under the breasts. The skin turns red and inflamed.

Pustular Psoriasis: This rare type of psoriasis is marked by pus filled blisters that appear hours after the skin becomes red and tender. Sometimes pustular psoriasis can cause fever, chills, severe itching and diarrhea. The rashes can occur in widespread patches in smaller areas of your hands, fingertips and feet.

Erythrodermic Psoriasis: This type of psoriasis can occur on your entire body and cause red peeling rash that itch or burn severely.

Psoriatic Arthritis: This type of psoriasis can affect any joint and the symptoms can be both mild and severe. Psoriatic arthritis is not as crippling as other form of arthritis but it can cause stiffness and progressive joint damage that may lead to permanent deformity.

If you are suffering from any the symptoms mentioned above it is time to visit your doctor for an examination. Also inform the doctor if you are suffering from discomfort and pain. Also, if performing routine tasks become difficult for example if you are having joint swelling or swiftness. Consult the physician if the appearance of your skin doesn’t look normal.

If you are already scared reading the symptoms remember that psoriasis can be cured and prevented. Doctor or dermatologists often prescribe creams or ointments that include-

  • Topical corticosteroids
  • Vitamin D Analogues
  • Topical Retinoid
  • Salicylic Acid
  • Moisturizer
Sometimes doctor prescribe light therapy where skin is exposed to ultraviolet light rays under medical supervision to slow down the growth of new skin cells. If the treatments don’t work then the doctor will prescribe medicines to suppress your immune system.

You can also opt for natural remedies to cure psoriasis. However, it is best to consult your doctor before you take them, especially if you are pregnant, breastfeeding or have preexisting medical conditions like diabetes. This is because natural remedies sometimes can interact with medications causing adverse reactions. If you are having any side effects report to the doctor and discontinue using the natural product.

Here are some common natural remedies that you use at get relief from discomfort-

Aloe Vera: Gel from the aloe plant can be applied on the skin thrice a day. This will reduce the redness and scaling associated with psoriasis. Use creams that contain 0.5% Aloe Vera.

Apple Cider Vinegar: Applying apple cider vinegar provides relief from scalp itch caused by psoriasis. You can dilute the cider vinegar with water in 1:1 ratio to prevent the burning sensation. However don’t apply apple cider vinegar if your scalp is cracked or bleeding this will worsen the situation. If apple cider vinegar works for you then you will see the results within a few weeks.

Capsaicin: This ingredient in chili peppers makes them hot and if added to ointments it can soothe pain by blocking the nerve endings. Capsaicin can reduce pain, redness, inflammation and scaling caused by psoriasis.

Dead Sea Salts: Adding Dead Sea Salt or Epsom Salt in your warm bath water and soak in the tub for at least 15 minutes can help to remove the scales and reduce the itching. Just apply moisturizer just after bath.

Oats: Applying oat paste on the skin or taking a bath in oats can reduce redness and relieves itchy skin.

Tea Tree Oil: This oil is derived from a plant that is native to Australia. Tea Tree oil has antiseptic properties and is skin-friendly. Applying shampoos containing tea tree oil will help to fight scalp psoriasis.

Turmeric: This herb is known for its anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Curcumin present in turmeric can alter the gene expression (TNF cytokine expression). This makes turmeric the first choice in preventing psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis flares. You can have it as a pill or supplement or add turmeric liberally in your food. Ask your naturopath your own turmeric dose.
Oregon grape (Mahonia Aquifolium) – This is a power-packed anti-microbial herb that can control the immune response. This herb belongs to the alkaloid family and applying ointment with 10% Mahonia is very effective in treating both mild and moderate psoriasis.

Fish Oil: Applying fish oil directly on the skin helps to cure psoriasis. Also vitamin D, Evening Primrose oil and Milk Thistle help to relieve the skin irritation. Make sure that these supplements doesn’t interfere with re-existing medical conditions or have harmful side effects.

Olive Oil: Applying olive oil on the affected areas can help to loosen some plaques next time you take a shower.

Other Tips to Control Psoriasis
Here are some additional tips to get cured of psoriasis-

Use Humidifier: Keep the air around your room moist with a humidifier since this will prevent skin dryness. Also sensitive-skin moisturizers help to prevent psoriasis outbreaks.

Apply Soaps without Dyes and Fragrance: Most soap has dyes and fragrances to make you smell great. However, if you are already suffering from psoriasis don’t use these soaps. Instead go for products that are labeled ‘for sensitive skin’.

Diet: Eliminate red meat and fatty foods to manage psoriasis. The National Institute of Psoriasis lists soy beans, nuts, chocolates and cranberries as ‘functional’ foods that can alleviate symptoms caused by psoriasis. Cut down on sugar, foods with gluten, white flour and caffeine to cure the sores.

Keep Skin Hydrated: Apply some thick ointments like Vaseline (petroleum jelly), olive oil and heavy skin creams. However don’t apply a very thick layer in the summer because sweat mixed with the ointment can make psoriasis worse. Pat yourself dry just after bath and apply the cream to seal in the moisture.

Be Careful While Taking Bath: Avoid hot water while taking a bath. Don’t use towel while robbing since chafing can worsen psoriasis. Add bath salts or oats while taking a bath since plain water can cause skin dryness. Take fewer showers in the winter to prevent skin dryness.

Follow Doctor’s Prescriptions: It doesn’t feel great to apply thick creams on the affected areas daily. However, it is important to follow the doctor’s instructions.

Expose Your Skin to Sunlight: Ultraviolet rays of the Sun can help to treat psoriasis, so a bit of natural Vitamin D will do no harm. However don’t overexpose since this can cause sunburn. Apply sunscreen on areas that is not affected with psoriasis; make sure it is above SPF 30. Consult your doctor to know how much of sun exposure you need.

Quit Smoking: Smoking makes psoriasis worse so it is best to quit smoking. Also this will reduce other health risks like cardiovascular and lung cancer.

Cut Down on Alcohol: Psoriasis is common in people who drink heavily so restrict your consumption. It is however best to avoid alcohol.

Tend to your Mental Health: This is important in managing psoriasis but it is often overlooked. Talk to a therapist to resolve your problems. Stay stress free.
Medicines that work on someone might not work on others. Find out what suits you best and incorporate that in your daily routine. So stay hydrated, think and look healthy always!

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