Archive for March, 2007

Herbal Tea Home Remedy For Acid Reflux

Posted in Health & Fitness on March 30th, 2007

There are many things that cause problems for those who have GERD (otherwise known as acid reflux). There are some things you can’t eat, and some that you should. There are times when this can be very confusing, and many don’t want to rely on medications to make all foods tolerable. If you want a home remedy for acid reflux, there are things you can try. One of these things is drinking herbal teas. Some of them will help, and some might make matters worse, so you should know which to have and which to avoid.

When choosing herbal teas, there is one important thing to think about when you are choosing what you want to try. Caffeine is a known trigger for acid reflux, and it should be avoided. That means that any herbal teas that you try must be caffeine-free. Though you can get decaffeinated coffee to drink, even that is known to aggravate GERD and should be avoided. This makes decaffeinated herbal teas the best choice when you seek a hot and soothing drink. Some of them might even help with some of your symptoms of acid reflux.

Many suggest that ginger can help sooth acid reflux symptoms, and if you can find it in a tea, a cup after a meal might help your stomach settle down for the night. You can mix peppermint with aniseed and lavender for a great tasting and soothing blend. You should boil a few cups of water and a teaspoon of your herbal mix, then drain the herbs after sitting for about ten minutes. If you boil this tea and want to have it sweetened, you might try honey instead of sugar or artificial sweetener.

Chicory Root can also be used to make a great herbal tea. You boil a few cups of this and then let sit for a while. You can then drink the tea with honey if you wish. Marshmallow tea might also help. This is not tea made from the marshmallows in your cupboard as the name might suggest, but from a root by the same name. This is known to soothe the digestive system. Another popular type of tea is Chamomile. This is also known to help soothe the symptoms of acid reflux.

You can make many of these on your own, but you can also find them in natural food stores or special sections of your grocery store. Any of these teas might help you feel better, but you won’t know until you try them. However, it is important that you talk with your doctor before you try them, as some can have side effects that you need to know about, and they might also mix badly with any prescription drugs that you might be taking for your acid reflux or for any other reason. You usually will not have any problems with this type of home remedy for acid reflux, but you don’t want to take a chance with your health.

Grab your free copy of Kathryn Whittaker’s brand new Acid Reflux & GERD Newsletter - Overflowing with easy to implement methods to help you find out about acid reflux disease diet and for information on acid reflux syndrome please visit Stop Acid Reflux Now

Is Hidden Caffeine Aggravating Your IBS?

Posted in Health & Fitness on March 28th, 2007

There are many things that can trigger bouts of IBS, but there are times when you might not know what is doing it. There are many things in the diet that can cause the bloating, cramping, constipation, or diarrhea that comes with flare ups, but some of them are easier to pick out than others. Have you considered that hidden caffeine is aggravating your IBS symptoms? It’s quite possible. You may have cut out coffee and caffeinated soda, but there are other places where you might be unknowingly getting enough caffeine to upset your system.

Diet Products:  There are many different diet products on the market that you might be taking. Some are supplements that help with energy or with appetite suppression. There are weight control bars that are much like granola bars, and other products that are closely related. These often contain natural substances that have caffeine in them. It won’t necessarily say so on the label though, so you have to know what to look for. If you don’t recognize anything on the label, make sure you look each thing up to see what it really is and if it might contain caffeine. Guarana is one of these that claims to be a natural alternative to caffeine, but it’s basically the same thing and will have the same effect on your IBS symptoms.
 
Coffee:  You probably already know there is caffeine in coffee, and you may have had to cut it out of your diet. Some like to have decaffeinated coffee instead so they can still enjoy the taste of coffee. The problem is that there are some brands that are called decaf, yet they still have some caffeine in them. The amount may be small, but it still might be enough to aggravate IBS.

Coffee Flavoring:  Though you might think that ice cream and yogurts would only contain an artificial flavor that mimics the taste of coffee, many of them really have caffeine in them. Check the labels carefully to see if there is caffeine. You may have not thought to look, but if you eat these products often, this might be a troublesome source you never considered.

Candy:  Sadly, chocolate contains caffeine, and it might contain more than you think. This includes chocolate drinks like hot cocoa. Something as small as a Hershey’s Kiss has caffeine, though it should only contain 1 mg.

Medications:  There are some medications that claim they are non-drowsy. These are supposed to help with your symptoms while keeping you awake. It makes sense. No one wants to take something for a cold only to fall asleep at work during a meeting. The problem is that some of them use caffeine to help keep you awake, and you probably don’t realize it. This is also a problem with some children’s medications also. Children should have very little, if any, caffeine.

Eliminating these things might help, but if it seems to make no difference, it might not be hidden caffeine that is aggravating your IBS symptoms. You may be able to tolerate some of them on occasion if you choose ones that have a very low amount. When it comes to decaf coffee, you might have to experiment with a few different brands until you find one that it totally caffeine-free.

Grab your free copy of Susan Reynolds’ brand new IBS Newsletter - Overflowing with easy to implement methods to treat IBS & help you find out about IBS recipe and for information on IBS symptom please visit Irritable Bowel Syndrome Relief Secrets.

Yeast Infections and Your Baby What you should know today

Posted in Health & Fitness on March 19th, 2007

A baby yeast infection caused by candidasis is not something that can simply be cured with a food journal and cookbook.  Babies can’t tell you what foods aggravate their symptoms so you need to take a different approach.

Believe it or not, but even babies can be affected by candida overgrowth and can experience yeast infections.  The most common yeast infections suffered by babies is diaper dermatitis (better known as diaper rash) and oral (mouth) thrush.  In many cases, a baby can experience both of these candida infections at the same time.

How do you know if your child has a yeast infection caused by candida?  The following are symptoms of a baby yeast infection you should watch for:

Diaper Dermatitis symptoms - Deep red rash that looks shiny and has satellite lesions.  The rash typically appears in the creases or folds of the thighs located in the diaper area and spreads.

Oral Thrush symptoms - Gray-white coating that is present on the tongue, gums and inside cheeks.  This coating will not be easy to wipe off.  In rare cases, oral thrush may be severe and the baby may find sucking painful.

What causes these baby yeast infections?  Yeast infections caused by candida start with a build up of fungus in the intestines.  Yeast infections develop in warm, moist environments where bacteria can thrive.  For a baby, the best environment for growing bacteria is the diaper and the mouth.   This overgrowth of fungus, along with other factors, may lead to diaper rash or oral thrush.

Causes of diaper dermatitis - Diaper rash is primarily caused by a wet or soiled diaper.  Skin can be irritated by urine or stool.  Irritation can also occur from diarrhea which can be highly acidic and burn the skin.  The rash can also result from tightly fitted, air-tight plastic pants which prevent moisture from evaporating.

Causes of oral thrush – Oral thrush typically occurs in babies who are still in diapers.  It can result from taking antibiotics to treat another infection, and can occur if the baby has excessive candida albicans in their system; they have damaged skin; or if there is a yeast infection present on the mother’s nipples.

Diagnosis and treatment - If you suspect a baby yeast infection, take your child to his/her pediatrician so the infection can be properly diagnosed.  Once diagnosed, treatment will be prescribed based on what the doctor deems best for your child.  Factors that determine treatment may include the age of your child, the severity of the infection, and if there are any pre-existing medical conditions.

Treatment for diaper dermatitis
- Removing diaper for a few days
- Medicated or anti-inflammatory creams
- Moisture-resistant diaper creams

Treatment for oral thrush
- Antifungal antibiotic that can be applied to skin or taken orally
- Topical cream for the mother’s breast if her nipple is the cause of infection

Take preventative action - You can keep your baby yeast infection free by ensuring the following –
- Change diapers regularly
- Keep the diaper area clean and dry
- Keep diapers off whenever possible
- Do not wash your baby’s skin with soap or other harsh cleaning products
- Properly sanitize soothers and bottle tops by boiling them for approximately 10 minutes to avoid recurrence of oral thrush.

If you haven’t already done so, sign up the free newsletter at Eliminate Candida Naturally which brings you regular updates on candida and you’ll find more on what to do for a baby yeast infection, plus candida treatment options.

5 Great Herbs For Acid Reflux

Posted in Health & Fitness on March 8th, 2007

Taking herbs for acid reflux may be a beneficial way to avoid heartburn so you don’t ever have to worry about confusing heartburn symptoms with a heart attack. Herbs can help you stop heartburn before it starts which will help you limit the number of antacids or other medications you may take for heartburn relief.

There are various herbs used as health remedies, but only some are truly effective at preventing and relieving acid reflux. The following are 5 effective herbs for acid reflux.

1 – Black Pepper – This is an aromatic herb that enhances taste, improves gastric circulation, and stimulates digestion. Black pepper can be added to recipes or can be an additional feature to prepared meals. For best results, use a small (approximately a tsp.) amount of fresh black pepper whole and grind it over food.

2 – Indian long pepper – Indian long pepper is a powerful stimulant for digestion, and is one of the most recommended for enhancing digestion, assimilation, and metabolism for foods ingested. In addition, Indian long peppers are fantastic herbs for acid reflux disease, as studies have found it can provide considerable protection against the development of gastric ulcers.

Indian long pepper should be taken in small amounts (approximately a tsp.), and can be purchased dry and used in recipes, or added to meals for flavor. Simply crush the pepper to add it to food. Keep in mind that if you use too much, the flavor can become too intense, and you may find it too hot to eat.

3 - Ginger – Ginger has been used for thousands of years to aid in digestion and treat stomach distress such as nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Ginger is one of the most highly effective herbs for acid reflux, and it is likely the most pure. The effectiveness of ginger is due to its anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and analgesic properties.

Fresh ginger root can be added to recipes or added as an extra garnish to a finished meal. Ginger can also be taken in powder form and in tea.Ginger is considered to be one of the safest herbal remedies to take, and you can ingest moderate amounts of it daily (I.E. tsp. of powder ginger, or an inch of a ginger root). However, be advised that if taken excessively, it may lead to mild heartburn.

4 – Liquorice – Liquorice is a powerful herb and anti-inflammatory that studies have found are showing much promise as inhibiting the development of ulcers, wounds on the mucous membran, and gastritis. Liquorice also acts like an antacid.

Liquorice was also found to improve the secretion status of Brunner’s gland, which is located throughout the duodenum system. Brunner’s gland works to protect against the development of duodenal ulcers. Liquorice is available in powder form and can be taken in tea. A cup of tea or 3 tsp. of powder liquorice daily is considered safe to take. High doses of liquorice can lead to symptoms such as headache, water retention and high blood pressure.

5 – Indian gooseberry – Indian gooseberry is a fruit that has been used to treat peptic ulcers and ingestion that is non-ulcer related. Studies have found Indian gooseberry to have considerable antioxidant effects, and it significantly reduced gastric mucosal injury and acid secretion. Indian gooseberry is made up of cell-protective properties as well as antiulcer, and antisecretory properties.
You can eat an Indian gooseberry raw with a little salt, or you can take it in powder form and in the form of tea. This herb is not associated with side effects, but should still be ingested in moderation, as it can act as a laxative if eaten in copious amounts.

When considering herbs for acid reflux, keep in mind that you shouldn’t take herbs as a form of medicinal treatment without first consulting your doctor about your plans. This is because some herbs may interact with other herbs, with medications you may currently be taking, or other health conditions you may have.

By Kathryn Whittaker. Sign up for a free newsletter that has proven methods for tackling Acid Reflux, Heartburn and GERD head-on at Stop Acid Reflux Now. On the site you’ll also find more about the different kinds of herbs for acid reflux and other natural acid reflux treatments.

Understanding Autism and Irrational Fears - 5 ideas you can try today

Posted in Health & Fitness on March 1st, 2007

Part of supporting an autistic means understanding autism and helping autistics cope with their fears. An autistic may fear many things including sudden loud sounds, physical contact, the dark, strange smells, etc. In fact, many autistics fear things they have no control over. However, not every autistic person has the same fears. Therefore, you need to learn what upsets your child and find ways to help them cope.

The following are 5 common fears suffered by autistics, and how you can effectively handle the situation to create a more positive experience for your child.

1. Fear of the dentist – Many autistic children are afraid of the dentist. This shouldn’t be too surprising, considering the dentist can be hard to take for the average person.

Understanding autism and fear of the dentist is a matter of introducing your child to the right dentist. You need to find a dentist who is experienced with children with disabilities, particularly autism. If you have trouble finding a dentist with such experience, your best option is to choose one who has compassion and a willingness to learn.

Overcoming the dentist fear is about slowly introducing your child to the environment. The first few visits should only consist of getting your child to sit in the chair and the dentist looking in his/her mouth. Furthermore, distractions such as TV can help make the process easier to take. This process can take several months.

2. Fear of the dark – Many autistic children fear the dark because they can’t control it and fear the unknown.

To help your child overcome this fear, try a game of peek-a-boo with the blanket, allowing your child to move from dark to light at their control. Other methods that may work in understanding autism fears of the dark include providing your child with a flashlight, lamp or nightlight.

3. Fear of loud sudden noises – Loud sudden noises such as a fire alarm or thunder, often startles and upsets autistics. Sensitivity to sound may be desensitized through sound recording. Provide your child with a recording of the sound that upsets him/her and allow them to start the sound and slowly increase its volume. Having control over the playback of sound can help the child become familiar with the noise, allowing them to recognize it when it occurs.

4. Fear of looking at people – Many autistics don’t look directly at others. Many researchers believe this is because autistics cannot accurately interpret expressions and emotions. Thus, autistics generally find it disturbing to look at people’s faces.

New studies on understanding autism have found that autistics respond well to cartoons that feature trains and cars that have people’s faces superimposed on them. These particular cartoons known as “The Transporters” have been particularly successful at helping autistics learn about emotions.

5. Fear of socializing – One of the biggest autistic fears is socializing. This means that it is often difficult for them to make friends. The following are ways you can help encourage them to socialize with those their own age:
- Encourage your child to get phone numbers of some of his/her schoolmates and bring them home so you can make calls.
- Schedule a playtime or invite another family of a fellow schoolmate over to your home for brief interaction (2 hour limit)
- Don’t rely on the friendship of only one child. Invite more than one child over.
- Ask your child what he/she wants to do when the friend comes over. Create a list of activities so things remain entertaining. Just remember, you need to teach your child to be flexible and accept suggestions from others. This can take time.

The more knowledge people have in understanding autism, the easier it will be for your child to make and keep friends.

By Rachel Evans. Sign up for a free newsletter and discover how understanding autism and autism symptoms can help you and your child cope better. For more tips on dealing with the signs and symptoms of autism please visit our blog.