Posts Tagged ‘mayo clinic’
Monday, October 10th, 2011
Time Management Tips for Healthy Living: Stress management tip: A cluttered home leads to anxiety disorder, stress and migraines; these simple home organization tips show you how to de-clutter your house quickly.
Simplify- it’s the new “downsize”
In the 90’s, the buzzword was “downsize.” Instead of laying off employees, businesses would engage in “corporate downsizing.” Switching from a minivan to a hatchback meant you were downsizing your gas budget. Going on a diet meant you were downsizing your physical space.
Today, the new buzzword is “simplify.” We have accumulated so much stuff- smartphones, laptops, Bluetooth headsets, instant text messaging, and hordes of other social media tools- that the surmounting stress has us gasping for breath, yearning for a simpler time- a time when we weren’t on-call 24-7.
A time when we could step out of our office, and actually BE out of our office.
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Save time, without going back in time
The days of snail mail and non-digital devices are (almost) over. You can’t travel back to a simpler time, but you can learn how to manage the time you have. By learning how to reduce clutter at work and at home, you will also reduce stress, and thereby alleviating anxiety, depression, and chronic migraine headaches.
Even if you’re not a Feng Shui master, you can effectively organize your house, even small living spaces, and simplify your life in a way that promotes peace and balance.
Here are some helpful de-cluttering tips:
De-clutter your workspace
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- Clear off your desk and empty its drawers. For now, put all papers, desk accessories, and miscellaneous objects in one pile for sorting. Using a non-scented all-purpose cleaning spray, gently wipe off all the dust and grime. Now, sort through your pile of paperwork, and throw away anything you don’t need. Consider taking digital photos of important documents. Do you still need the originals? Set up a filing system for need-to-store papers, like tax forms, and label each section appropriately.
- Clear your computer space. Do you have any saved files you don’t need? Erase them. Are your files organized in a way that makes it easy for you to find them? Consider renaming files that don’t clearly describe their contents. Reduce the number of icons on your desktop, and uninstall any programs that you don’t use or need. Your computer will run more smoothly, efficiently, and you will increase productivity.
De-clutter your living space
According to the Fly Lady, just 15 minutes is sufficient to declutter one living space, using what she calls the “27-Fling Boogie.”
- Put together your decluttering equipment, including garbage bags or boxes marked “toss,” “donate,” or “sort,” a bottle of spray cleaner and a dust rag.
- Set your timer for fifteen minutes per room or clutter zone. So, if you live in a 3-bedroom apartment with living room, then you will spend a total of 75 minutes decluttering your home. (You weren’t going to forget the kitchen, were you?)
- Starting at the door, get to work! Pretend this is a reality show, and the object is to end up with as much stuff in your “toss” and “donate” bags. Remember the “use it or lose it” rule- if you haven’t used something in over a year, then you might as well get rid of it.
- Now the fun part- put away all your items to be sorted, and enjoy your newly clean living area!
- When the timer goes off, go on to the next room, and start over.
- Throw out your garbage before you get second thoughts, and drop your bag of donations off at your nearest collection center.
De-clutter your breathing space
You’ve managed to simplify your work and home space; now it’s time to take the mental clutter out of your life.
- Make a list of all your commitments, including work, social life, and family. Is there anything on your list that causes more stress than satisfaction, or anything that interferes with your home life? Give yourself permission to let go of any unnecessary obligations that you don’t enjoy.
- Reduce the amount of electronic stimuli in your life. Studies show a direct correlation between migraine headaches and eyestrain, and frequent smartphone usage. Try to get by with less television viewing, movie streaming, or Facebook chatting. You turn your cell phone off before meetings, but why stop there? Silence your cell phone during meals, while exercising or just for a few quiet moments with your spouse. You have voicemail- use it.
- Don’t multitask. You might think that you’re getting more work done in less time, but you’re really just producing sub-standard work. People who try to do two things at once get frustrated easily, are unable to concentrate, and are easily distracted. Instead, focus on one task at a time, be it cooking, mopping the floor, calling customer service, or helping your child with his homework.
If you liked this, then you’ll also like:
Seven Traits of Highly Happy People with Chronic Illness
Blow Off Migraine Pain with 4 Simple Yoga Breathing Exercises!
Stop Your Next Panic Attack in 4 Simple Steps
FlyLady.net- How to Declutter
Embracing the Art of Decluttering
How to Declutter Your Life and Reduce Stress
Top Clutter Zones Organized
“Mind Sweep” – Clearing the Stress of Mental Clutter
Simplify your life to reduce stress – MayoClinic.com
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Tuesday, September 27th, 2011
Depression, Stress and Low Self Esteem
Chronic pain patients, such as migraine sufferers, experience low self-esteem, depression, and stress. Online tests help detect symptoms of chronic illness.
Chronic pain is disabling
Do you suffer from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), depression, or anxiety? Patients of chronic pain, migraine headaches, rheumatoid arthritis, or fibromyalgia often struggle with emotional issues that cause marital problems, feelings of low self-worth, panic attacks, and severe chronic depression.
Below is a review of six helpful trusted websites that offer online personality quizzes that are relevant to mental health conditions and relationship difficulties often experienced by migraine patients, and other sufferers of chronic illness.
1) Depression Self-Assessment
Take the test– Mayo Clinic
Depression is a severe emotional disorder felt by the majority of chronic illness sufferers. Depression can be difficult to catch; depressed people who have suffered their condition for years often don’t know they are depressed, and don’t remember a time when they didn’t live under a cloud of sadness. If you suspect you suffer from depression, then seek psychological therapy immediately.
2) What’s Your Worry Profile?
Take the test– Whole Living
Are you a worrywart? Excessive worrying leads to anxiety, nervousness, tension, high blood pressure, and chronic stress headaches.
3) The Sustainable Marriage Quiz
Take the test– Psych Central
The majority of migraine patients are women, with millions of patients suffering from debilitating head pain, frequent nausea, visual disturbances (auras), fatigue, and extreme sensitivity to migraine triggers such as bright lights, scents, certain foods, and changes in weather. Sadly, migraine patients suffer disability, in addition to poverty and marital problems that lead to divorce.
4) Quiz: How High Is Your Self Esteem?
Take the test– Beliefnet
Ask any migraineur what emotions she most associates with migraine illness, and she will likely tick off feelings such as loneliness, uselessness, sadness, frailty, despair, and low self-esteem. Such is the situation with many people who suffer chronic illness, as they feel that nobody in their social circle relates to their situation, and that nobody is able to help. In order to build your migraine support system, it is crucial to build confidence, optimism, and feelings of self-worth.
5) Stress Screener
Take the test– Mental Health America
How stressed are you? This informative stress test will inquire about health conditions such as emotional eating, insomnia, digestive problems, anxiety, and chemical addiction.
6) Migraine Pop Quiz: How well do you understand your Headaches?
Take the test– Migravent.com
Confused about migraine symptoms? This migraine quiz will answer questions like:
- What’s the difference between a migraine and a headache?
- How many different kinds of migraines are there?
- What is a migraine with aura?
- If I have migraines, should I avoid eating chocolate?
6 Migraine Myth-conceptions
7 Websites that will Change your Life and Make you Happier
Seven Traits of Highly Happy People with Chronic Illness
Chronic Illness & Self Esteem Issues
Live Your Life Well: Stress Screener
What’s Your Worry Profile?
Depression self-assessment – MayoClinic.com
Quiz: How High Is Your Self Esteem? – Beliefnet.com
The Sustainable Marriage Quiz
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Friday, September 9th, 2011
Exertional Migraines - What a Pain! You just finished a great workout, but instead of exercise high, you end up with throbbing head pain. Learn how to avoid exercise headaches caused by exertion.
You just finished a great workout, but instead of exercise high, you end up with throbbing head pain. Learn how to avoid exercise headaches caused by exertion.
To run or not to run? That is the migraineur’s question…
Research proves that some of the best ways to avoid chronic pain is by eating a healthy diet, getting plenty of rest, managing stress, avoiding pain triggers, and incorporating exercise into your daily schedule. But what are you supposed to do if exercise turns out to be one of your worst migraine triggers?
What are exertional headaches?
People use the term “exertional headaches” interchangeably with “exercise headaches,” but that can be misleading. While it’s true that exertional headaches usually occur after strenuous exercise, such as weight lifting, running, and other high-impact aerobic activity, there are other activities that may precede an exertional headache, including sneezing, coughing, sexual intercourse, or just having a strong bowel movement. Also read: 5 Sports-Related Migraines You Never Heard Of
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What’s the best way to prevent exertional headaches without dropping my fitness regimen?
Tip #1- Ease into it!
Don’t just run out the door and take off at a fast sprint, and expect the rest of your body to catch up. You need to give your heart rate a chance to slowly build up to your endurance level, in order to better regulate blood flow to your brain, and thus prevent a backlash of head pain. Similarly, ease out of your workout gently, by slowing down gradually and taking lots of deep cleansing breaths.
Tip #2- Check your heart rate!
If you use an elliptical machine, stair stepper, or stationary bike, then you can keep track of your heart rate, pace, and calories burned easily. If you choose the road less traveled, invest in a simple heart rate device. It will save you a headache later, and maximize your fitness potential.
Tip #3- Breathe!
If anaerobic exercise, such as weight lifting or yoga, is your workout choice, then remember to breathe deeply and regularly throughout. Take plenty of controlled breaths, and coordinate them with your movements- first breathing in, and then out while exerting your strength.
Tip #4- Check your blood sugar!
Some people who get migraines are very sensitive to changes in blood sugar. Try drinking orange juice or a sports drink before exercising, and see if that makes any difference in your migraine headache symptoms.
Tip #5- Don’t forget to stay hydrated, too!
Even if you don’t opt for sports drinks, it’s essential to stay hydrated during a workout, and the rest of the day, as well, particularly if you live in a hot, dry climate. Dehydration is one of the leading causes of headaches. Also read: 15 Tricks for Staying Hydrated and Avoiding Migraines
Tip #6- Try a bit of caffeine!
This is only good advice if caffeine isn’t one of your headache triggers, of course. Many headache treatments use caffeine to constrict the blood vessels. If you do decide to drink coffee before a workout, remember rule #5- drink extra portions of water! Which Foods Trigger the Most Migraines? See our Checklist
Tip #7- Try indomethacin!
Exertional headaches are usually benign. In that case, your doc tor might prescribe indomethacin to help you avoid getting migraines every time you want to get a good workout.
Tip #8- Take more magnesium!
In some cases, a simple magnesium deficiency correlates strongly with migraine headaches. Many popular nutrients for migraines combine the beneficial properties of magnesium, riboflavin, and butterbur.
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Exertional Headaches- National Headache Foundation
Get a Headache after Working Out?
Is Your Exercise Routine Turning Into a Headache?
Exercise headaches- Mayo Clinic
Thursday, July 21st, 2011
Eliminate Tyramine from your Diet- Some common- and not so common- foods that trigger migraine headache attacks.
What is tyramine?
Tyramine is an amino acid product that is essential for regulating blood pressure. Certain foods with tyramine include aged cheese, processed meats, and overripe fruit. Scientists found that by prescribing MAOI antidepressants (monoamine oxidase inhibitors), which prevent the breakdown of tyramine, patients are able to overcome their symptoms of depression. Still, too much tyramine can cause a “tyramine reaction,” which can have detrimental side effects. For that reason, the Mayo Clinic advises individuals who take MAOI’s to follow a tyramine-free diet.
What are the side effects of too much tyramine?
The most common symptoms of tyramine reaction are:
- High blood pressure
Do foods containing tyramine cause migraine headaches?
There is no scientific evidence proving that tyramine directly causes migraines, but there is a high correlation. According to Migraine.com, the foods that trigger migraines overwhelmingly contain high levels of tyramine, with chocolate at the top of the list, accounting for 75% of all migraine food triggers.
What are the best foods to avoid in a tyramine-free diet?
Below is a checklist of some food groups that contain high levels (6mg or more) of tyramines:
Processed meats, poultry, and fish
Opt for fresh beef, chicken, and seafood at all times- dried salamis contain food coloring, preservatives, and sugar, in addition to tyramine. Aged chicken liver contains the highest levels of tyramine, according to some reports. Other meats and fish to avoid are:
- Smoked, dried, or cured meats
- Hot dogs, sausages, and pepperoni
- Beef jerky
Tyramine levels in cheese increase with age. Pizza, lasagna, and other cheesy meals are therefore restricted on a low tyramine diet. Cheese products that contain the most tyramine are:
- Blue cheeses
- Sharp Cheddar
- Processed cheese (example: Velveeta) and aged cheese spreads
Fermented foods, condiments, and yeasted dough
All soybean byproducts contribute to tyramine reaction. These include: tofu, miso, soy sauce, and cooked soybeans. Sauerkraut is also a red-flag item on the tyramine-free diet, in addition to sourdough bread, chocolate, and non-alcoholic beer.
Fruits and vegetables
Fruits and veggies are the most unlikely migraine-triggering culprits, and the most frequently misunderstood. For example, bananas are high in tyramine, but only if they become overripe. The tyramine is in the banana peel, not the pulp. Tyramine levels increase with time, as the bananas brown and ripen. Fruits and vegetables to omit from the tyramine-free diet are:
- Brown bananas
- Certain beans, such as fava beans, lima beans, and navy beans
- Red plums
If your doctor has advised you to limit your tyramine intake, then avoid consuming the following beverages:
- Beer, lager, or ale- either from tap, bottled, or canned, including alcoholic and non-alcoholic beer.
- Red and white wine
Perfumes and Migraines: The Good, the Bad, and the Downright Stinky
Foods To Avoid In A Tyramine-free Diet | LIVESTRONG.COM
Tyramine Free Diet
MAOIs and diet: Is it necessary to restrict tyramine? – MayoClinic.com
Migraine triggers: food and drinks | Migraine.com
Thursday, June 2nd, 2011
U.S. News Best Hospitals for Neurology
Out of 1,200 hospitals that were reviewed for excellence in treating chronic migraines, the US News has narrowed their list down to the 10 highest ranking hospitals in the fields of neurology and neurosurgery.
1) John Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore, Maryland (410) 955–5000: In addition to placing #1 for migraine treatment and prevention, John Hopkins Hospital also made the national #1 Honor Roll for treatment in ENT, Rheumatology and for gynecology.
2) Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota (507) 284–2511: World-famous Mayo Clinic ranked #1 for diabetes and endocrinology, gastroenterology, and kidney disorders; they also have a strong online presence in providing current information about migraine headache symptoms and common headache triggers.
3) Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts (617) 726–2000: Massachusetts General Hospital ranked #1 center in Boston for treating migraines, and #1 in the USA for their psychiatry department.
4) New York-Presbyterian University Hospital of Columbia and Cornell, New York (212) 746–5454: In addition to neurology, NY-Pres also ranked #4 in psychiatry and kidney disorders.
5) University of California, San Francisco Medical Center, San Francisco, California (415) 476–1000: The UCLA teaching hospital was voted the #1 hospital for treating migraine pain in all of San Francisco.
6) Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, Ohio (216) 444–2200: Cleveland Clinic ranked best hospital in Cleveland for providing migraine headache relief, and #1 US hospital for treating heart disease and conducting heart surgeries.
7) Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, Los Angeles, California,(310) 825–9111: The UCLA Medical Center was voted the best clinic in Los Angeles for treating chronic migraines, and #2 in the USA for excellence in Geriatrics.
8) St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center, Phoenix, Arizona (602) 406–3000: This prestigious hospital was also voted the third best neurological center in Phoenix, Arizona.
9) NYU Langone Medical Center, New York (212) 263–7300: The NYU Langone Medical Center made the national Honor Roll for excellence in 14 fields of medicine, including neurology and neurosurgery. Additionally, they placed #2 for best hospital in New York for migraine headache patients.
10) Barnes-Jewish Hospital, Saint Louis, Missouri (314) 747–3000: The Barnes-Jewish Hospital/Washington University made the Honor Roll as #1 best migraine treatment center in Saint Louis, Missouri.
Wednesday, April 6th, 2011
Considering weight loss surgery? A new study claims that obese people who undergo weight loss surgery may also reduce their risk for migraines.
The study, which was reported in the March issue of Neurology, reports that obese men and women who underwent gastric bypass or gastric banding surgery complained of less migraines–a health problem that is more common in overweight and obese people.
“Our study provides evidence that weight loss may be an important part of a migraine treatment plan for obese patients,” said researcher Dale Bond in a news release.
According to the study, nearly half of the patients who lost more than 66 pounds from the surgery reported a 50 percent decrease in this headache condition. While researchers note that the study is small and should not be considered as irrefutable proof that weight loss can lessen attacks, it does suggest there is a connection.
Why Weight Loss Surgery Reduces Migraine Pain
Although there may be a link between losing weight and headache frequency, researchers aren’t sure why this is occurring. In fact, some researchers say this study raises more questions about this surgery and its effect on headache frequency.
Neurologists believe that the weight loss may affect other factors that can contribute to migraine pain–namely, its effects on blood pressure, stress and eating habits.
Other factors are thought to trigger these attacks. According to the Mayo Clinic, certain foods, changes in estrogen levels, physical exertion and even environmental factors can play into account when it comes to a person’s risk. For example, eating foods containing monosodium glutamate (MSG) may trigger attacks, which are commonly found in Asian restaurant food. Eating caloric foods such as chocolate, cheese or meals high in sodium may also trigger these episodes.
Study: Migraines Caused by Poor Eating Habits
Obese people who have undergone weight loss surgery are often put on strict diets that limit or eliminate these food options, which in turn may reduce their migraines. Losing weight may also make it easier for them to become mobile and independent, raising their self-esteem and reducing stress. This too could reduce their attacks.
Still, these are only guesses–researchers are unsure why weight loss surgery reduces migraine pain for these specific individuals. More studies are planned to be conducted in the future regarding these findings.
Los Angeles Times, Mayo Clinic